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Melony Coasts was by all standards a very attractive women. Two births, although one admittedly was c-section, and the subsequent sixteen years of motherhood did little to diminish Melony’s radiant beauty nor dampen her lively personality.
Melony’s children her 16-year-old son Eric, and her 14-year-old daughter Sophia were the fortunate product’s of two very enviable sets of genes. Naturally, the Coasts were popular around the neighborhood. Then one day the enterprising and chronically bored Melony developed the idea of transforming her charismatic family into a lucrative YouTube series.
Melony’s optimism was not misplaced. The family was an instant internet sensation, and soon they were drawing audiences of millions. Merchandise sales and fan donations came flooding in for the already relatively wealthy Coasts.
Like more conventional television shows fans usually had a favorite star of the show. A considerable portion of the viewership was drawn in by Melony’s low cut shirts and form…
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At State Expense

The Emperor's secluded island palace was a grand labyrinth connected by marble corridors gently lit by evenly spaced rows of candles. Antonious the master of the imperial treasury was being escorted by a silent guard of soldiers armor molded in silver and trimmed with gold. They walked in step, the rhythmic echo of their footsteps blended with faint moans of lust and sudden squeals of pain that emanated from the walls.
Inside the Emperor's depraved sanctuary, there was no restraint on any of his impulses no matter how debased and cruel. In all the Empire this is where his rule was truly absolute, and the master of the house subjected all inside to pleasures and torments unmatched by anything outside those walls. Antonious dreaded this place.
The palace guards didn’t lead Antonious to a grand hall for his audience with the Emperor but to a small room. The ruler didn’t sit on a throne. Instead, he sat cross-legged on the floor at the head of a short-legged table covered with a d…

Legacy

Melissa came through the door of the townhouse carrying two canvass bags brimming with groceries. She kicked the door closed behind her and lugged the bags to the kitchen. Melissa’s 7-year-old daughter Emma was in the adjoining living room sitting at a small plastic table set up in front of the TV. The surface of the child's activities desk was covered with scattered crayons and white sheet paper. Kate, the nanny was sitting on the sectional sofa directly behind Emma.
“Hey Mrs. Karvic,” Kate said.
“Hi Kate,” Melissa replied as she set the grocery bags down on the counter.
“Do you want help with those?” offered kate.
“Yes, thank you,” said Melissa.
“Mommy! Want to see what I drew?!”
“Of course I do!” Melissa said with reciprocal enthusiasm.
“Come see!” Shouted Emma
“Ok! Just a second,” said Melissa.
“This looks nice,” Kate grinned as she pulled out a bottle of red wine from one the bags.
Melissa smiled “I landed a new account today, so I thought I deserved a little treat.”
“Congrat…

Life Cycle

“We literally had a window with a view of eternity. Once I saw it in person, I decided I never wanted to think about it again.”
This was Meghan York’s most repeated sentiment about his time in space.  The infinite void rather than inspire Meghan’s mind had provoked an existential dread. The dark emptiness was something she never wanted to face again.
Upon his return to humanity’s celestial cradle, Meghan rejected the curiosities that had to lead her to the very demarcation line of human existence and instead embraced his biological imperative to raise offspring.
“Life,” Meghan told herself, “Life is the only remedy.”
Meghan was not annoyed to be awoken by the cries of her infant son crackling over the baby monitor. She was laying in bed anticipating its calls for a midnight feeding.
The crib was against the wall opposite the door. A woven canopy of softly glowing lights gently flowed out from a fixture above casting gentle shadows on the room’s sky blue paint. Hearing the door open th…

Never Look a Gift Horse in the Mouth

Karnot propped up his tired old body with his cane and quietly watched as a group of parents showed their children how to dig a small irrigation ditch. On most days a sight such as that would be enough to move the otherwise stalwart man to tears.  The 66-year-old Karnot had lost his only child, and now it was far too late for him to have another. For a man in his twilight years, it was a very lonely apocalypse. It would all die with him. But this time watching the process of one generation passing on knowledge to the next quelled his sadness. The old pioneer may not have carried his genes into the cosmos, but he could be sure he was leaving a hard fought for legacy. The survival of any species is never more than a numbers game. Life, especially in it’s more complex forms is exceedingly fragile. Matter will only take on consciousness for the briefest of periods before entropy tears the physical form apart and scatters the pieces into oblivion. Make as many copies as you can as quickly as…

Colony Collapse Disorder

The descent into the lightless shaft was accompanied by the rhythmic clicking from the steel teeth of gears. Every revolution of the cogwheels brought them lower and lower. 25 miners were packed into the iron lift. They drifted into the thickening darkness without a word.
The cogs abruptly locked into place as the bottom of the cart bumped against the ground. The sliding steel cage open with an ear piercing screech and the human cargo disembarked. They stood in a cavern that was at the hub four diverging tunnels. Without saying a word, they dropped their equipment into the dirt and disappeared into the lightless depths of the subterranean passages.
On the surface, the systems of civilized life were also facing similar arrest.  Everywhere people stopped whatever it is they were doing and either wondered off into the surrounding frontier or simply became stuck behind doors which they no longer had the wherewithal to open, or their bodies were seized by inescapable behavioral loops. Eve…

A Coup in the Magical Kingdom

Doctor David Merk was sitting at one of three round tables in the rather modest employee breakroom. He carefully ripped the foil topping from his cup of yogurt and mixed up the contents with a small plastic spoon. He took a bite and gave a friendly nod of acknowledgment to a lab assistant on his way to use the microwave.
Doctor Tanya Andrassy walked into the room holding a small Tupperware container in her hand a folded up newspaper under her arm.
“Doctor Merk,” she greeted in a way that was both as formal as it was familiar.
“Doctor Andrassy” David replied.
Tanya sat opposite of David and laid the paper out flat on the table. She pointed to a picture of a remarkably handsome young man.
“Remember him?” She coyly asked.
David wiped some strawberry yogurt smattered in the snow-white hair of his mustache and studied the photo for a moment.
“Oh, that’s a second generation Kyle S series,” David said. “He got into Yale? Good for him,” David said nonchalantly
“Do you ever wonder if we might…