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Takeover

by Nerisha Kemraj

 

“Run, Billy!” Dad said, trying to hold off the droids, a true rebel.

His father had prepped him for this, but Billy never thought the time would come.

“Mom! The machine men are here!” He slammed the front door and noticed the back door broken off its hinges. They were already inside.

“Billy!” Mom screamed from upstairs.

He ran into her open arms.

“Mom! The bunker. Now!”

Just then the bedroom door flew open, and out walked a droid—his mother’s head in its hands, her blood dripping on the floor.

 

Billy gasped for air as the droid squeezed tighter.

 

Nerisha Kemraj

Nerisha Kemraj resides in Durban, South Africa, with her husband and two mischievous daughters. While poetry has been a love since high school, she began writing short stories in 2016. A lover of dark fiction, she has over 100 short stories and poems published both in print and online and also received an Honourable Mention Award in the Fujisan Taisho 2019 Tanka Contest.
Nerisha holds a Bachelor’s degree in Communication Science and a Post-Graduate Certificate in Education from University of South Africa.

Visit her Facebook page @Nerishakemrajwriter. 

System3011-01

by Meera Dandekar

 

The dark alley felt more like home and reality hit me. What was the point of running? Nothing was going to make the sinking feeling of void leave my chest.

A robotic voice outed me; my location pinged on every broadcasting frequency.

The white, powder-coated, metallic subhuman flew in to arrest me. My crime didn’t feel so serious anymore. It wasn’t like it was alive—it’s just metal.

I tased the machine and it broke down. A hologram flashed the best memories of my childhood. I read the label—System3011-01. The first of many.

My father was a great inventor.

 

Meera Dandekar

Meera Dandekar, currently living in Mumbai, India, loves to explore fictional worlds showing the magical realm and wants to visit Derry, Maine—the scariest place in the world. She has a definite admiration for the written word. Befriend her by offering her some coffee, she definitely loves a great brew!

Take It

by Jacqueline Moran Meyer

 

Dad and I hid underneath a burned-out hovercraft, taking cover from the drone spraying us with hydrocarbon needles, which not only kill but turn the dead into fuel for the Cyborg’s vehicles.

“Take it,” Dad murmured after being hit.

When he died and transformed, I rummaged through his remains, swiping my hands over the slick oily goo, searching for his life’s work. Finding the chip, I ran through the destroyed city clutching Dad’s creation, humanity’s lifesaver.

While sprinting towards the tunnel, the explosions around me intensify.

I will either reach and destroy the Cyborg’s main computer grid or die trying.

 

Jacqueline Moran Meyer

Jacqueline Moran Meyer lives in New York, enjoying the company of her husband and three children. She had been published in many Black Hare Press anthologies, Bewildering Stories, Iron Faerie Press anthologies, Eerie River Publishers, Blood Song Books, Flash Fiction Magazine, Grinning Skull Press, among others. Visit her website www.jmoranmeyer.net.

The Tyrant

by Andrew Kurtz

 

“I have been chosen by the people as a representative.  Your tyrannical ways must cease!

“Executing women who are pregnant to avoid population increase, instead of getting an abortion, is monstrous!

“Publicly burning the old and sick alive because they are unproductive to society goes beyond inhumanity!

“The people chose you to govern us because we felt you would be beneficial to society; however, we  were  mistaken,” Nicholas said as he removed a shotgun from his coat.

In an instant, a blue light disintegrated him, leaving only ash.

“Your requests have been denied,” responded the computer system that ruled society.

 

Andrew Kurtz

Andrew Kurtz is an up-and-coming horror author who writes very graphic and ultraviolent short stories published in numerous horror anthologies. Since childhood, he has loved horror films and literature. His favourite authors are Stephen King, Clive Barker, H.G. Wells, Richard Matheson, and Edgar Allan Poe. Check his latest works here.

Danse Macabre

by Joshua D. Taylor

 

Max looked around the room that was covered in Jennifer’s splattered remains. He had no idea what happened. One minute he was trying out the new salsa dancing skills he had downloaded. The next thing he knew he was covered in gore.

A notification from the developer popped up in his vision: You may have received the incorrect skills with your recent purchase. Your account has been refunded.

Max scrolled through the list of new skills in the salsa dance program and saw one titled “Dismember.”

He looked around at the mess and hoped that Jennifer had a backup body.

 

Joshua D. Taylor

Joshua D. Taylor is an author from Southeastern Pennsylvania who does not know how to keep his stories in one genre. He lives with his wife and one-eared cat. He loves to mix-n-match things from different genres and story elements to achieve a madcap hodgepodge of the truly unexpected.

With Great Power

by Darlene Holt

 

When CyDocs became a thing, they needed volunteers to test out the new ware. I was among the first, opting for a cybernetic arm which promised never-before-seen strength.

I won arm wrestling contests with ease, effortlessly ripped doors from hinges, and threw blows like a sledgehammer with my fist.

One night, I challenged a stranger with neuralware processors to a fight. He hacked the arm before I could even swing. It turned on me, titanium fingers clutching my throat, constricting with every attempted breath. The stranger’s laughter lingered as the metal hand tightened, my human arm powerless to stop it.

 

Darlene Holt

Darlene Holt is a writer, editor, and educator. Her most recent fiction appears in Sirens Call Publications, The Raven Review, and Horror Tree’s Trembling with Fear. She especially enjoys writing drabbles with several appearing in Eerie River Publishing’s forthcoming drabble anthology Dark Magic. She currently resides in San Diego, California.

Roots

by Colleen Anderson

 

The layering of nanobytes into his hypodermis laced Nirved’s nerves with lava. The pain muffled him. The nanotechnologist paused.

“No,” Nirved grunted. “Continue.”

The protective barrier had been set. Planting came next.

Large swaths of jungle lay barren, plants crisping under the sun’s inferno. Trees toppled throughout countries, and oxygen thinned. People died with the trees.

At best, this experiment could save the world. At worst, Nirved would die before Earth did.

 

Colleen Anderson

Colleen Anderson writes fiction and poetry, and her works have appeared in such publications as Polu Texni, Pulp Horror Book of Phobias, On Spec, and Cemetery Dance. A Body of Work was published by Black Shuck Books. She lives in Vancouver, BC, where she watches for mermaids and mould monsters.

Inclusion

by N.E. Rule

 

My stomach growls in anticipation of the U8-rations downloading to my dwellment dispenser on sign-on.

I push down memories of Mom’s last warning during her D-leet ceremony: Don’t accept it. But living as a grid-free hacker during the Great Overpopulation is a struggle.

Employment is impossible without it. Convertors say it opens doors, literally. Also, GloBank downloads cash creds to your braindrive directly.

The SysCtrl swipes at the bloodtear after the microchip’s implanted. He smiles reassuringly as LiFi starts up. The eye-con app for D-leet registers 9125. Now that I’m assimilated to the system, I’ve ten years to break it.

 

N.E. Rule

N.E. Rule attended Ryerson University in Toronto for creative writing and business communications. Her writing portfolio includes software specs, marketing copy, and training materials. However, her passion is creative writing. The characters in her head are getting louder, refusing to wait for her spare time to come out and play.

Cheap-Ass

by Rich Rurshell

 

Dana tore through the Obsidian Plaza Hotel, despatching security with ease. Her body had cost a pretty penny, but her speed, reflexes, and combat capabilities were unrivalled. All four limbs and her torso had been replaced with top of the line Linneman Industries augmentations. It was ironic she was on her way to assassinate their president, Charles Linneman.

Dana burst into the penthouse suite to find Linneman and his entourage eating dinner.

“Nice augs,” said Linneman. “Shame you didn’t buy our firewalls, too.”

Linneman manipulated a holographic interface in his palm, and Dana began dancing.

“Tonight’s entertainment, gentlemen!” he cried.

 

Rich Rurshell

Rich Rurshell is a horror, fantasy, and science fiction writer. From his Suffolk, England home, he ponders the existence of the sinister, the fantastic, and the downright terrifying, explores the darker side of life and what lies within, and celebrates the beauty in the world and what lies beyond.
Facebook: @RichRurshellAuthor

Cool Kids

by S Jade Path

 

Ren stood on the gore-slicked dancefloor, blood sluicing down her armour. Dancing holograms still gyrating in the wet smears, and the pounding music seemingly quiet in the absence of screams.

Staring, smiling, at what remained of the Syndicate Children—the Cool Kids.

They had made me, saved me, she sneered at that thought. They had taken her dead, junkie’s body, fused armour-scale tech to it, trained it to kill.

Made her into this abomination.

***

Ren sat on a ledge, 172 floors above the street, combat boots swinging.

Whispering, “Cool Kids never sleep.”

Leaning forward, she pushed off.

Falling—finally—to sleep.

 

S Jade Path

S Jade Path is a fledgling author of small fiction and a prolific creator of dark poetry. She has had a life-long obsession with crawling into the depths of the psyche and forging shadows into words. Her work parallels this penchant for delving into the fantastical and strolling amongst demons.  Follow her on Facebook: SJadePath