08:20:00 am, by Nic Wilson   , 137 words  
Categories: Blog, Announcements

Welcome

Nic's published works are now available for e-reader at Smashwords and Amazon, as well as other e-tailers. Visit Nic's book page for specific availability.

TelepathBlood MoonEu/DHomelessBankstersThe Necromancer's GambitNexusWhores book coverDagCinderella Shoes CoverNew Corpse SmellCockfightSave As

This blog showcases the ongoing and in-process work of Nicolas Wilson, full of wierd, fuzzy, wriggly things to tickle your brain. There tend to be several different projects ongoing at once, with their own posting schedules. Nic's publishing schedule briefly broke Nic's brain, but we replaced it with a melted Kit Kat bar we found under his toilet, and that seems to have him back online- better, even. Every November, check back daily to watch a novel birth itself in a month. Expect posting to return to its regular, if slightly assymetrical schedule outside of July and November novel writing marathons. 2014's project will be Next of Kin, a cyberpunk dystopia following a man chasing his brother's murderer.

Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 ... 38 >>

04/24/15

  06:38:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 964 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: The Colonist

Levy sighed. “Okay. Some of you have probably figured out we've got more cargo than we're supposed to- and in particular extra supplies. On the one hand, it means if we get laid over on the planet, we're okay. On the other, if we don't end up stuck for two years- the plan was for me to stay behind.” “We've got a primitive form of the seed that became the Lunar station- a robotic mining/assembly kit. Ample shelter.” “You knew?” Clod asked Rica. “She figured it out,” Levy said. “Product of being in charge of the produce- I knew I had more plants than I was supposed to. But now that things are out in the open: why you? I mean, I don't really have a horse in this race, since I only got subbed in last minute as an alternate, so I wouldn't have been a contender, anyway, but why you?” “My theory's always been that Ken has a particular kind of personal distaste for me. So this was as far away from Earth as he could blast me without people realizing he was sort of trying to kill me. Or it's because I have a unique combination of skills. My robotics training means I can keep the droids functioning long enough to build the infrastructure I'll need to survive long-term. And with my physics, I might be able to get this end of an FTL transmitter working- presuming we can ever finish wrapping our heads around how such a thing would work.” “But the plan, once I'm safely on-world, is for the Moon to start launching reflective dishes- well, basically- for such an array to bounce signals from Earth and back. Well, once Dr. Rierdon makes it to the Moon.” “Rierdon was chosen for the Moon?” Clod asked, turning up her nose. “He's an ass,” Levy said. “Groped not one, but two astronaut candidates. He definitely would have been out of the program. But... he doesn't really have any peers in his field. Certainly not any young enough that they'd likely live to see the completion of the project. And continuity’s important. But Ken did not fuck around with him, either. I heard he let the MPs drag him to the brig- you know, let him sweat it out in a military prison. Let the CIA work on him a little; I heard he was there for the waterboarding, and just kept screaming at him that you do not treat astronauts that way- and if he wanted to be an astronaut he'd learn that or he'd never leave this rock. Rierdon will always be a dick- til the day he's inevitably and righteously lynched for his epic dickery. But he at least learned to stop assaulting his coworkers, which is a step in the right direction. And I'm pretty sure he pisses himself at the mention of the words 'HR complaint' something I'm looking forward to telling the Lunar Station staff.” “But aside from the impressive heft of my melon, us Levys are extraordinarily long-lived. I don't have a great-great-grandmother who lived to less than her nineties, and even the hard-drinkenest men in the family make it into our eighties. The only way to die sooner is to diabetes ourselves to death.” “Heh, you pronounce it like Wilford Brimley,” Clod said. “It's how my mom pronounced it.” “Did she diabetes herself?” “Nope. Loves chocolate ice cream, and always has a bowl before bedtime. But so far, no diabetes. We just keep saying diabetes cause it sounds funny pronounced that way, right?” “Indiabetically.” “But why didn't you tell us sooner?” Paul asked, then swallowed, and added, “acknowledging that I'm the last person who can complain about kept secrets.” “Ken swore me to secrecy. Through training he told me he'd been keeping my alternate in the loop on the whole project, and he could swap me out at a moment's notice if I so much as drunk-sleep-mumbled it to a hooker; I don't think he understands most of us patronize hookers less frequently than he does.” “After a while I figured out that was a bluff- and he figured out that I knew that, so he escalated. And told me he could cut off my communication with Earth. My porn. Hell, he could make sure there was only enough food and water to barely and uncomfortably survive. He didn't need me to thrive- just to keep the colony going while the robots prepared the space for an actual crew.” “And I believed him. I mean, I don't think he'd do it. But he could. And he might. And even though that kind of a heavy hand made me want to break his confidence immediately, I actually agreed with him.” “I didn't want the first half of this mission to be tragic and melancholy- um, yeah. But I didn't want it to be about me. I'm as excited as I am terrified to be the first long-term man on Mars. It's a cool thing I'm doing, and one I'm happy to do. And I wanted to be able to enjoy what might be the last interactions with people I ever get to have. It's an honor to have been chosen for this, just like it's been an honor to hurtle through space with all of you.” “Aw,” Paul said, and picked him up in a big bear hug. “I'm going to miss the hell out of you.” “We'll still be able to stay in touch,” Levy said. “For the first year I'm still going to be your closest neighbor, and the easiest person to get on the phone.” “Which is to say nothing of the couple months of science and set-up we've got planned,” Rica said. “Oh,” Paul said, and dropped him abruptly. “Nevermind, then.”

04/17/15

  06:37:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 1160 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: Martian Dust

“It's an EVA,” Clod complained, “and I have twice as much training at them as you do.” “I'm more than qualified,” Paul shot back. “And... I need to do this myself. I'm responsible for Martin and Alisa.” “You're not,” she said reflexively. “I don't believe you believe that,” Paul said. “And even if you did, it certainly wouldn't be enough to convince me. Let me do this. It's an EVA, not rocket science- which I largely defer to you- or brain surgery, which you largely defer to me. Any one of us could do the EVA. But I want to. Need to, even, for my own sanity- which has not been quite as hardy as I would have originally thought.” She sighed. “Okay.” She suited up, and helped him carry Martin and Alisa into the air lock. Then she sealed him on the other side of it. Paul braced himself against the side of the Perseus. “You're sure about the orbit?” he asked over the comms. “Dude,” Levy said. “I'm pretty sure I believe in ghosts and being haunted- plus I'm easily the most neurotic person on this ship. I quintiple checked my figures. They'll get their orbital Viking funeral. Just push towards the planet. Plus, we're in a mostly stable orbit ourselves; I doubt you could shove hard enough to reach escape velocity from here.” Paul gently pushed Martin away from the ship. He started to list away. Paul's heart started to beat faster, and he worried that the corpse was going to keep floating away from the planet's surface. He contemplated chasing it with his thrusters. “That's fine,” Levy said, tracing his fingers across a tablet. “I just modeled the trajectory. Perfect, even.” Paul tried to recreate the arc with Alisa's body. To the naked eye they looked like they'd pass right by the planet, but staring at them Paul could tell there was a slight angle to their trajectory. They watched the bodies in silence for a moment. Paul felt he had to say something, so he keyed his comms and took a breath. “They were our friends, and our colleagues, and we'll miss them, and know that the universe is poorer for their loss.” He lingered outside the door, and watched as they drifted further from the ship. Clod wanted to go out and get him, but remembered enough about being a lifeguard as a teenager that she talked herself out of it- and hoped she could likewise talk Paul down. “I know that look,” Clod said over the comms. “I've seen it in combat. When a soldier's seen too much. And they lose their will to keep fighting. I've heard that people on carriers just walk off the edge, but on land, it's just in the eyes. They switch off. And it's never long before they catch a bullet, or step on a mine.” “But this isn't the same, Paul. The world isn't any worse a place than it was when we started this journey. Sometimes that means innocent, wonderful people die needlessly. But they wouldn't want you to heap another tragedy on the pile.” He sighed. “It just... it seems right, doesn't it? Me going with them... it would be fitting. And a better end than I deserve.” “At some point did you knowingly have unprotected sex with a werewolf?” “Not knowingly,” he said with half a grin. “Weird time for humor, but that's my point. You didn't have real reason to think you were putting us at risk. Hell, when you found out about it, you cut out your wrists to try and protect us- wrote a warning on the wall in your own blood.” “Seemed melodramatic to me,” Levy said with a smile. “We're out here, exploring the unknown. And oddly enough, a big chunk of the unknown tracked us down from our own back yard. But it's more than a stretch to say you're responsible. Alisa's dead, and Martin, too. But they died being astronauts- scaling a mountain people have said for centuries and maybe millenia was unscalable. And I would bet you the nastiest sex act imaginable that even if you'd told them they weren't going to make it back home, they would have still got on that rocket. I know I would have. We're all crazy people- endangering the hell out of ourselves for a thrill that I can hardly even begin to understand in myself, let alone articulate in any intelligible way.” “And you're missing the bigger issue. We shouldn't have to make that return trip alone. What if I have a medical emergency? What if Rica does, and it's something I can't quite handle? I get that this angsty guilt is a big part of who you are. But this isn't about you.” “I know,” he said. “But I wanted to give you the option.” “To send you through the Martian atmosphere to burn up?” “I'm pretty sure I've got this wolf thing under control. But what if the myths aren't total bunk. What if the closer we get to the Lunar Station, the batshit crazier I get, until I can't control it? The hormonal explanation's a great hypothesis- but it's certainly not the only possibility, and definitely not proven. ” “But that's an if,” Clod said. “And if that happens, and if you run through our tranqs and we still can't pacify you, I will shoot you myself with the Bradbury.” “Okay,” Paul said, “you can stop trying to sell me on living. Really, you had me at 'nastiest sex act.'” “Me, too,” Levy said. “Ugh,” Clod said. “I changed my mind. Both of you should burn up in the atmosphere. Preferably before you ask the question that is now almost certainly on your feeble minds.” “Actually,” Rica said, “the look on your face when you said nastiest- I think you had something very specific in your head. And even I want to know... for purely scientific reasons, obviously.” “Seriously, at what point did the Perseus become a frat house?” Clod muttered. “I think,” Rica said, “we're just happy to have the distraction.” Clod saw that she was staring out at the sun rising along the edge of Mars, casting the bodies of their crewmates in sharp relief. Clod sighed. “If I tell you, can you promise not to perv too much?” “Nope,” said Levy. “At least he's honest,” Paul said over the comms. “My inclination was to lie.” “Screw you guys, then,” Clod said. Paul opened the airlock and stepped inside. Then he sealed the outer airlock, and opened the interior one. Clod helped him take his helmet off. “In their defense, I was halfway through composing an elaborate bending of the truth myself. If only I could lie faster...” but Rica's amusement melted away. She looked to Levy, who purposefully avoided her gaze. “It's time, Levy. You need to tell them,” she said. He tried giving her his saddest puppy dog look. “Or I will.”

04/10/15

  06:32:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 433 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: You What?

“You what?” Paul asked, incredulous. He stared, beleagueredly while the signal crawled to the Moon and then back, and Ken turned the camera so Paul could see the Station behind him. “I’m on the Moon.” “I don’t care if Satan’s flossing his colon with you. But you brought Laura.” “I did,” Ken said matter of factly. “How is it you haven’t been committed to an insane asylum.” “I think the preferred term is ‘mental health facility.’ And she came because she wanted to. And because she’s got bigger stones than the rest of the so-called astronauts we left back on Earth. And she wasn’t in danger. I made sure the port was empty before we touched down. And I made sure the Station was safe before she came down the Elevator. There were risks- there always are, but at every step I did what I could to safeguard her.” “And you couldn't ask me, first?” “You're not her father. And she's a grown-up girl.” “And I'd have said, 'No.'” “You probably would have. But it wasn't your call.” “The hell it wasn't.” “It wasn't. You'd have played the tragic, noble hero, and forbid her from coming to the Moon. You'd have hated yourself, and died alone from masturbation-induced exhaustion. And I've single-handedly saved you from that fate.” “And what if I wanted to try things with Maria? We've got a kid together.” “I remember how you two ended things. There's no coming back from that- you know that better anybody.” “Doesn't stop you and Eren; you two get together and hate-bang seasonally.” “Yes, but we always hate ourselves afterwards. It's good sex, maybe even great. But that doesn't mean it gets in the way of the loathing.” “What if I don't want her to be like me?” Paul asked sullenly. “Why not? You're not so bad, all considered; hell, if you had tits and a weaker jaw, I'd want you for myself.” “You know what I mean.” “I do. And she knows what she's getting into. In fact, she's getting more of a choice on the matter than most of the folks up here with us. If she doesn't want to get a little wolf in her, da dum tsh, she can always ride back down on the next shuttle, or go back with Claude.” “Unless somebody mauls her,” he said. “Not happening. I've got Ang and Mai escorting her around. She's not thrilled with it, of course, but so far nobody's so much as growled at her. But you shouldn't be talking to me. She'll need you. And you'll need her, too.”
  03:07:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 81 words  
Categories: Announcements

$.99 sale on Euphoria/Dysphoria and Homeless this week!

Looking for a new read? Give some of these a try, for cheap. I've got two titles on sale, while I finish the final revisions on Nexus 2, and some other great projects I haven't shared yet. So now's your chance to catch up!

Over 175 ebooks from over 150 authors--including USA Today Bestsellers--are on sale for 99 cents.

This promo will last only April 10th, 11th, and 12th.

Don't forget to tell your friends so they can one-click too!

Visit the 99 Cent Book Blast.

04/03/15

  06:31:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 1136 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: Rival Affections

It had been a few days, now, since Ken took the trip down the Elevator. Laura was stir crazy. She hadn't had as much isolation training as astronauts usually received, nor had she had the same kind of lead time. So it was all hitting her at once, stuck at the small space port atop the Elevator, that she had signed her life away. She was going to get infected. That was basically a given, between the angry Station crew and her patient zero boyfriend. And once that happened, she wasn't going to be allowed back on Earth. No more Disneyland. No more orange juice popsicles. No more standing outdoors on a sunny day. She wanted to take the shuttle back to Earth, to finish school, and have kids that weren't covered head to toe in fur. But she wanted to see Paul more. She wanted to have his kids more- even if they came out furry. The Elevator lurched, and her stomach dipped. Or perhaps that feeling was dread that Paul might not be hers anymore. He slept with his ex-wife- his ex-wife who carried his child to term. And she'd seen the way his minxy little pilot eye-humped him. And she knew how hard it had been for her, back on Earth, at school- basically a roiling pot of angst and hormones. And speaking of his ex-wife, she was a super-strong, super-aggressive monster. Who was waiting at the bottom of the Elevator for her. Laura tried to force herself to stop shaking as the doors opened. “I wanted to meet you here alone,” Maria said. She was sitting in a chair, rocking her child in her arm. “Oh,” Laura said, taken aback. For one thing, Maria wasn't a giant wolf. For another, she was staring peacefully down at her son, and barely paid her any mind. “You can pull up a seat,” Maria said. Laura did. “Isn't he beautiful?” Maria asked. Laura smiled halfheartedly. Of course Paul's kid was beautiful. And so was his mother. “What's his name?” Laura asked. “Paul,” Maria said. “It seemed fitting. And he looks like a chubby little Ken doll of him.” “I can see that,” Laura said. It only made her miss him more. “Sorry,” Maria said. “New mom syndrome. I just... I can't stop staring at him, you know? The Station revolves around the Earth, and now my world revolves around his Jupiter of a head.” She stroked his hair, and the baby cooed, and stirred, but didn't wake. “But I wanted to be able to talk to you before you saw anybody else.” Laura swallowed. And Maria smiled. “Not to eat you, or intimidate you or anything. But I feel like I need to apologize. I- I left Paul. I don't know how much of it he told you about. But I left him for the Moon, and for my research and my career. And I left him with a giant hole where I'd been- and I left him like that because not leaving him like that would have left a similar hole in me. And I knew eventually he could fill his. It was selfish- maybe even bitchy. But it was never about malice. He's a great guy. In a different life I'd have dedicated my whole world to grinding his pelvis to dust while popping out an army of these adorable little things,” she held baby Paul up. “But that world isn't this one. So I left him- and that left things unresolved between us. And even though it had been years, when I saw him, it just felt like it had been a long workweek where I stayed over at the lab to finish some research- not like we'd been estranged and divorced and on different orbital bodies.” “But I'm trying to justify and defend myself because I know I screwed up. I slept with Paul. And I think I knew things were important with you, and selectively misunderstood that. And maybe there's a component to this disease that made Paul even more sexually magnetic, or maybe it's just that he'd been the primary balance in my spank bank the entire time I'd been up here.” “It wasn't fair to Paul- though I'd call he and I even, since he got sex and I got the universe's screwiest STD. But it was fucked up that I did it to you, too. I felt so guilty since, and I wanted to apologize to you so badly. But I knew that was about me- and not you. And you didn't need to hear my apology the same way I felt like I needed to give it. So I didn't. Because you didn't need to hear my side- it didn't really matter.” “But now you're here, and we'll be living together. The Station's big, and I get if you want to avoid the crap out of me. A little cold shouldering is probably better than I deserve. But I wanted to tell you how truly, deeply sorry I am. And I'm glad you're here. Because you make Paul happy. And all the crap that's happened over the last year, I love him enough to want him to be happy. And that won't be with me. I don't even know if I think it should be. Like I said- I left him. And that was always going to be there. You're the opposite. I left everything- Paul included- to come up here. And you left everything for him.” “That's why I'm glad you're here. Paul deserves somebody who would do that. And you doing that- that tells me you deserve him, too.” Maria struggled to roll herself out of her seat. She walked towards the door into the rest of the Station. “But I know you're probably already tired of me. So I arranged for my girlfriend to give you a tour of the facility- show you where the bathrooms and the food and the rest are.” “Girlfriend?” Laura asked, as a petite Asian woman walked towards them. “Paul ruined me for other men,” Maria joked. “Or I just happened to fall in love with a woman.” Mai kissed her on the lips. “This is Mai. Mai, Laura.” “How'd it go?” Mai asked quietly. “She didn't hit me,” Maria said. “You were holding a baby,” Laura said. Then she smiled. “Aw,” Mai said, disappointed. “You had my hopes up for a cat fight for a second there.” “That would have left you holding the diaper bag,” Maria said, and held up baby Paul for emphasis. “And a very soon to be full diaper bag, by the smell of him.” “Yeah, I think diaper changing would have killed the mood,” Mai said. “Come on,” she said to Laura. “I'll take you to the best junk food we've got.”

03/27/15

  06:30:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 709 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: Alone

He remembered Laura's last words to him: “You don't have to go alone.” Ken finally understood what Paul saw in her- besides the youthful perky parts. But he'd always believed that people went out alone into the world, that community was an illusion, a social nicety discussing the just beneath the surface urge to murder your neighbor to take his wife and his garden and claim it for your own. “Though in my defense,” Ken said aloud, “Kayleen gardens without a bra on; it's enough to make every man feel a little paleolithic.” But he was also man enough to admit the gulf between what a man tells himself is the difference between polite society and instinct, and staring into that empty blackness from the ledge overlooking it. So why did he love space, an equally empty blackness? He knew the answer the moment his mind formed the question. Because space was the antithesis of the human void. The void was all the lizard brain reactions that held man back from his potential; space was endless possibility, spread out across the sky to inspire the whole species. And that was what was waiting for him on that station: raw, powerful instinct, all fur and fangs and claws. In a away, what had happened to his astronauts felt honest; human beings were predatory, self-involved monsters. The crew of the Lunar Station were just wearing their monster on their sleeves. Ken also knew that there was something fitting to his likely demise. It was his hubris, his desire to see the stars, played out however vicariously through Paul and the Perseus, that led to this. He couldn't help but feel compromised his standards, and he had a lot of astronaut blood on his hands. He probably deserved to be torn to shreds. But looking out at the stars as the Elevator descended, he knew it was a death he could live with. He was in space. He was complete, fulfilled in a way he never understood before his shuttle breached the Earth's atmosphere. It was like his soul losing its virginity to the girl of its dreams. He was alone with the love of his life, and the only thing that saddened him was that it couldn't last forever. The Elevator shook as it reached the bottom floor. He'd already video conferenced with the Station crew, and knew they were going to meet him at the bottom of the shaft- which made him smile. He walked over to the exit. He stood in the Elevator once on Earth- or rather, the prototype build of it. The more expensive, intricate, difficult to manufacture on the Moon bits had been launched, but most of it was rebuilt using Lunar minerals mined by robots. He swallowed as the doors started to open. The room was dark, but he could make out several silhouettes in the blackness- including one outline he'd never forget: Paul's ex-wife, Maria. “What big teeth you've got,” Ken said. He regretted not having more clever last words; they were good, but not great. Maria stepped into the light streaming out of the Elevator, looking a little self-conscious. “I know,” she admitted. “Too big for my mouth. I had to have extensive orthodontics.” Ken sighed, from relief, but it came out annoyed. “You people ruin all of my bits,” he said. “I hope you're talking about the comedy kind...” Maria said. “You people?” Colleen asked. “Astronauts. I'm beginning to suspect there's a secret medical op they don't tell me about- funny bone ectomies. Dare I ask why the lights are out?” “We talked about jumping out at you and yelling, 'Boo!'” Maria said with a grin. “Until cooler heads prevailed.” “Yeah,” Mai said, “scaring the crap out of an older guy with a heart condition didn't seem like the kind of thing fricking scientists should be stupid enough to do.” “Anybody have the urge to violently murder me?” Ken asked. “No more than usual,” Colleen said. “Of course, you did talk to my tits a lot back on Earth- so that's relative.” “That's fair,” Ken said. “But- and I mean this sincerely, so no social niceties, please- I need to know if anybody gets a burning desire to defenestrate me. For science.”

03/23/15

  02:50:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 119 words  
Categories: Announcements

Through 3/25, get The Alien Chronicles for $.99!

For those of you who are following the amazing Future Chronicles anthology series, you've gotten amazing, and now Amazon bestselling shorts from some of the most unique scifi writers I've had the privilege of bullshitting plot with. I've had stories in two, the Telepath Chronicles, and the Alien Chronicles. The series itself is standout, and these go on sale rarely, so snap it up while you can!

Get The Alien Chronicles here!

Very shortly I'm going to be announcing Nexus 2's release date, and sharing snippets with you. Stay tuned for the pew-pew. It's been too long since I pulled out my phaser gun. But until then, Bogdan, from Nexus, has his. Check him out cheap while you can!

03/20/15

  06:40:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 398 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: In Morning

“Good morning,” Paul said into the camera. “You've eaten already, right?” Clod asked nervously. “We really are sorry about that.” “It's not your fault. I just... I forgot how much better Levy's food is. Seeing you eat real freaking waffles while I squeezed a pizza flavored soy paste out of a tube... it was cruel.” “We didn't think you minded.” “I didn't, at first,” she said. “But it was cumulative. After so many missed meals consisting of real-looking food, I was starting to consider landing the Perseus on the Martian surface.” “Could you?” he asked. “Don’t know. It certainly wasn’t designed for it. Not explicitly. But I’m pretty sure the cockpit has shielding. I think I could decouple that and make it down.” She picked up a spoonful of something that clearly wasn’t oatmeal and then dropped it back into her bowl. “I should have made you stay up here. “None of us had to stay up there.” She sighed. “Yeah, unless something goes wrong that requires somebody on this end,” she said. “I’m fine, it’s just, I had no idea it was going to get so flipping boring.” “That’s why you’ve got me.” “But you’re still wearing a shirt. Despite my protests.” “We’ve got another couple of years to this mission. Do you really think that being sexually frustrated for that long of a stretch will make things better?” “It would make my morning better,” she pouted. Paul sighed, and started to unbutton his shirt. “What are you doing?” Rica asked. “Nothing,” Paul said, and buttoned his shirt back up the rest of the way. “See what you did?” he whispered. “I got you to start taking your shirt off. Good enough for one morning,” she said. “But how are we coming on the fuel?” “Levy thinks he’s ironed the kinks out of the reactor- managed to get a 3% bump in yield, which pushes us over our threshold. We should be able to launch on schedule.” “Good,” she said, and sighed. “Good?” “I don't know if we'd be able to spare the fuel for me to come down. I'd hate to spend the next couple years up here on my own. I could get really good at Ultra Mario, but I guess I didn't realize how much of a social butterfly I am.” “Or maybe even introverts need a little attention now and again.” “Or maybe that.”
  06:29:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 507 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: Spaceshuttle Built for Two

“We have ignition,” Alan said over the radio. The shuttle started to shake under Laura. “Is it too late to say no?” she asked with a grin. “Yes.” Ken said. “But I have a dog.” “No, you don’t.” “I wanted a dog.” “Mai tells me Maria’s son is very dog-like.” “Son?” she asked. “Um. Crap. Did no one mention that…” “That… all makes sense.” She’d never questioned it before. The idea that her boyfriend contracted a strange illness in space, and that the same illness had ravaged the Lunar Station. She had never asked how it spread, but the moment Ken mentioned a son… she put it all together as he watched. “It is too late to turn the car around,” Ken said, and winced. “No,” she said. “It’s okay. I mean, I might try to tear her hair out when I see her-“ “Loathe as I am to preempt a cat fight- it could pretty quickly turn into a dog fight- and she’d win.” “I’m okay. As okay as I think I can be, I guess. I suppose that gives us things to talk about, if he makes it back from Mars.” “When, he gets back,” Ken corrected. “But since I'm having honest conversations with people. Why did you ask me to come to the Moon? And I don't think wanting to have a copilot or even somebody to share the trip up with is the whole answer. And like you just said, I'm trapped in this tube. Can't go anywhere. So tell me.” “I asked Zero first. He wanted to live on his own terms.” “You know that's not what I meant. I want to know why you were so desperate to have a copilot.” “Honestly?” “Truth.” “Nobody wants to die alone.” “Motivational speaking is not your forte.” “Not that I think we’re either of us going to die. But, nobody wants to be the only guinea pig, no matter how certain you are of an outcome. On that note, I had the Lunar Elevator locked down remotely. You’ll stay put there while I check out the Station. If nobody eats me, I’ll give you the all clear.” “And if not?” “Well,” Ken said, “that's the other reason I wanted to make sure you were able to fly on your own. You can take the shuttle back to Earth.” “And what do you think the odds are that'll happen?” “Truth?” “No reason to stop now.” “Mai said 70%. But I'd lop some of that off, since she's got a parasite that has made her violently aggressive; it's even a possibility that the disease has developed an awareness, that it might be trying to draw in more prey. It's a bit science fictiony to assume that's what's happening, but I'd correct my survival chances down to 50%.” “So you'd flip a coin to get into space?” Ken smiled. “I'd play roulette to get into space- even if every space but 28 meant horrific dismemberment.” “You're a crazy person.” “Nope,” he said, and couldn't contain his grin, “I'm an astronaut.”

03/13/15

  06:31:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 687 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: Dry Powder

“Crap,” Paul said. His arm was heavy, and his first thought was that he’d killed Rica. But the heaviness was warm, and soft- and flesh. “Crap,” he said again. “What?” Rica asked. “We had sex,” he said. “What? No, we didn’t. And what do you mean, ‘crap?’” “We had sex. We’re sweaty. And naked. And woke up on the floor in each other’s arms. And I’ve been crying.” “You frequently cry during sex?” “No, that was a side observation. And by ‘crap’ I mean that my girlfriend is going to murder me. And possibly make it look like you did it, so you have to go to girl prison.” Rica smiled. “Oh. Good. But we didn’t have sex. Trust me, I know when I’ve had sex.” “I used to,” Paul said. “A little bit of a friction burniness, certain muscle soreness. But anymore… I heal too quick. I’m not confident the old telltales would still tell the tale.” “Well I can tell you, definitively, we did not have sex. Because I didn’t fall asleep crying- I’ve been awake the whole time.” “Oh.” “We were at each other’s throats. Screaming. Fighting. We tore off each other’s clothes, and maybe there was something animal and mate or hate about it…” “Mate or hate?” he asked. “As in, if we’re nude it’s easier to either bang it out or find the soft, murdery bits. Instead, something about being vulnerable together… we both just went blubbery. There was much weeping, and cry-snotting.” “Thank God,” Paul said. “Hmm?” “I kind of thought I had dried spooge on my neck. And in the circumstances, I think having your snot caked on me because we were comforting each other… well, it’s still gross, but it’s a personal, intimate, emotional kind of gross- which makes it inherently less gross.” “It kind of weirds me out that I’m not the gayest person in this pod right now.” “Given that we’re still in kind of a naked embrace, I’d say this is one of the more heterosexual things I’ve done on this trip.” “Okay, you need to let go, now.” “Okay,” Paul said, looping his arm from under her head, though not quite understanding her urgency. “Sorry,” she said, rooting around in the dark for her clothes. “I just knew if I stayed there much longer I was gonna get jabbed. And why ruin our perfectly platonic relationship?” “So true.” “How're you feeling?” “Nonhomicidal. Peaceful, even. You?” “Like I'd really like my next pee to not be into a bucket.” Unconsciously she glanced towards the bucket. “Uh, Paul...” “Yeah?” “We knocked over the bucket. In the scuffle, I'd guess.” “All the more reason to get out of here now. Where's your tablet.” “Lights, up,” she said, and the lights came up to 40% brightness. “Shit. Looks like we stepped on it. Repeated- and angrily.” “Then how do we get out of here?” She looked to the door. “Knock real loud?” She walked over and pounded on the metal. Levy's picture came onto a small screen beside the door. “You guys cool?” he asked. “We're cool,” Paul said, “aside from one smashed tablet.” “Yeah, I thought that might happen. But how do I know you're not just acting calm, biding your time for neckbitings and stomach open-tearings.” “You're a dumbass, Levy.” “Yeah. But that doesn't prove anything.” “Eventually you have to let us out. The only question is whether or not Rica breaks off her foot in your dick.” Levy's eyes got wide until Paul grinned. “In it? Whoa. Man. And what's messed up, is I bet somebody would watch that porno.” “Levy!” Rica said. “I'm opening it, I'm opening it.” The pod shook as it rotated. There was a hiss, and the door slid up. “Whoa,” he said. “It smells like a little league bathroom in there.” “Seal it up,” Paul said. “Shouldn't we clean it out?” Levy asked. “Do you want to?” “Um, no.” “I don't think we'll need it again. So just rotate it back out into the stack.” “Aye aye,” Levy said, saluted, and hit a few keys on the keypad. The door slid down.
  06:28:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 419 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: Complications

“Laura?” Ken asked. “I didn't expect to find you in a bar.” “Are you drunk?” “I drove here,” he said. “That's not an answer.” “I suppose it isn't. But no. I'm just elated.” “And that elation isn't due to some other substance?” “Only circumstance,” Ken said, and slipped into the seat next to her. “But there's... well, a complication. With Paul. It’s not likely we'll ever be able to bring him back to Earth. Or any of the infected astronauts. They’re a contagion, after all. Bringing them to back would mean exposing the entire species to a hazardous genetic parasite- one that we need to study. But the plan for now, and for as long as the infection staves off the detrimental effects of microgravity, is for them to stay on the Moon.” “The Moon needs a resupply. And it seems all of our trained astronauts have grown another dozen ovaries each. So I'm going myself. I'll pilot the resupply myself, and stay up there. But the smallest crew vehicle they have to put on top of the rocket is a 2 seater. “And it ain’t like we can put cargo in the extra seat. What I’m saying, is if you want to ever see Paul again, this is probably your only chance. All you gotta do is agree to take a few courses remotely while you’re there. See, if you decide to stay, we’ve got to make sure you’re going to be useful to Mai- who you’ll be assisting.” “This is crazy.” “Crazy is my bread and butter.” “It’s crazier, with the caveat that my boyfriend’s ex is now a scary space monster who might try and murder me.” “Or sleep with you. And I’d given even odds to those two that she’ll just leave you alone. You get a chance at space. And true blave.” “How could I say no?” “There is one potential complication.” He picked up her glass and smelled it. It was straight bourbon. “Though it’s apparently not a problem anymore.” He swallowed. “You want to talk about it?” he asked. “No.” “Fair enough. You’ll have to pass the physical- but you're young, no history of illness or infirmity. And you know how to fly, right?” “Paul taught me.” “That’s what I thought. Normally, that’d be good enough. But you’re going to be my copilot, and I’ve got a crappy ticker. I don’t want to kill us both just because my genes hate me, so I want to make sure you're capable of one-womaning it.”

03/06/15

  06:23:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 536 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: Golden Ticket

It had been several minutes since Ken asked the question. He was surrounded by astronauts, crazy space cowboys who usually fought each other over the chance to do something dangerous and stupid. But still, not a single hand was raised. “This is a golden opportunity,” Ken said. “A chance to be a part of years of research in space. It's the Moon, and an extra long stint; it's a singular opportunity to join the ultra elite who've spent the most time outside our orbit.” “Sir,” one of the astronauts said, “we're used to being guinea pigs. But that's always come with the reassurance that the best medical and scientific minds had already figured out all the variables, and the only risk was God viewing what we were doing as building a tower like the one in Babel. But this... it's based on conjecture and guesswork. You can church that up if you want, but it don't change the fact that this isn't a known risk. It's an unknown. Made worse by the fact that we don't really know what happened up there. The Moon went dark, and astronauts died. You give us your personal assurance that whatever happened up there is over- but that assurance doesn't mean a hell of a lot, since you'll be safe back here on Earth.” “I'd gladly put my fanny where my mouth is. Don't chortle; I have an especiallly hygenic fanny. But the fact is NASA doesn't shoot people like me off world. I'm loud, and opinionated, and I make for one hell of a bureaucrat, but I'm no astronaut. And you are. You have been blessed with physicality, intelligence and talent. I would murder every third one of you for this slot. But that's no how it works.” Silence. “This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to go into space. Sure, potential dismemberment’s a rider, but this is space, and not a one of you cowards wants to make the trip? Cowards. Every last one of you.” He stomped out of the conference room. But there was a smile hiding under his sneer. He’d never had the heart to hope for this, not since his idiopathic atrial fibrillation was discovered. But he was getting his shot. Alan knew him well enough to see all that, but he kept it to himself, at least until they were alone. “I know this is what you want- what you’ve always wanted, since way before you joined the program. But you’re not that same kid anymore. You’d have to give up booze. And hookers. And booze. And all that’s assuming your second-rate heart doesn’t explode on the trip up.” “That’s sweet, that you’re concerned. But you’re not my type.” “And you’re not mine. But that doesn’t mean I can’t want you to be happy- or at a minimum alive.” “This is every pretty boy or girl whose asshole you wanted to tongue; it’s my white fucking whale, Alan.” “As opposed to your white eating whale?” “I’m going to miss that sarcastic mouth of yours. But I’ll shoot you the moon from the Moon real regular, so you can keep it exercised.” “I think, despite myself, I’ll miss you, too, Ken.” They hugged.

02/27/15

  06:23:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 737 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: Each Other's Throats

Paul couldn’t be certain how long they’d been locked away. But he did know that things with Rica had gone from unpleasant to her snarling every single syllable at him. She bared her teeth, and he swore they were longer than before. “You killed Alisa. I loved her.” He wanted to swallow his anger, and respond diplomatically, but his rage was overpowering. “Did you? You knew her a handful of months. You banged her. I'd believe you loved banging her. But loved her? I've had produce around longer than you two were together.” “You really know how to get a woman's goat, you know that? I fucking understand why Lis wanted to kill you. And I'm sad that she didn't succeed.” “You sound like you’re anxious to finish her work.” “No,” Rica said. “If she wanted you dead, you’d be dead. She wanted the crew. She wanted all of us to be together.” “She slaughtered Martin.” “She fucked up. Like you fucked up with her. But the difference is nobody murdered you for it.” She shoved him, and there was enough strength behind it that Paul left the floor behind, and smashed spine-first into the wall of the pod. It was enough to shake it on its moorings. But he didn’t care. The whole world lost its color, and all he could see was Rica. Somewhere in the last vestiges of his rational mind, Paul recognized the moment. He felt the same with Alisa, when he chased her down. She was his whole world in that moment, and it took only a moment to decide what he wanted to do to her. He balled his fist and threw a punch that his inner doctor suspected would break her jaw, her transformation be damned. But she was swifter than him, and ducked beneath the blow, and used his momentum to grapple him into the opposite wall. In his head, Paul heard Levy say, “We’ve got to stop meeting this way, wall,” but couldn’t laugh at it. Before Paul could pick himself off the floor this time, Rica lunged at him, and pinned him to the ground. They grappled, raking fingernails across one another’s face while trying desperately to get at each other’s necks. In the struggle, Rica put her knee in his crouch, and he doubled over, and it bought her enough distance to get her mouth over his neck. She bit down, but didn’t have the strength yet to tear through. She jerked her head from side to side, scraping bloody lines into his skin as he tried to pull away. She could feel Paul’s muscles swelling beneath her, saw the bones of his face jittering. Then she stopped. “What the fuck is that?” she asked with her teeth still around his throat. He swallowed, and it unnerved the both of them hat his Adam’s Apple stroked against her tongue. “Um,” he said, and turned red. “Sorry, about that. I know we were trying to kill each other and everything, but… I guess the way you threw me around was, kind of hot.” Rica tried to hold it in, but couldn’t contain herself, and rolled off of him and laughed. When she could finally compose herself she sighed, and said, “If I had a quarter for every time a guy poked me with a wrestling boner, I'd have a roll of quarters- just like the one you're sporting.” “Heh,” Paul chuckled, and rubbed his face. “Just so long as you aren't planning to do anything with it, sport,” she said. “God, no. I might have gotten away with what happened with my ex- and I emphasize might, because I wouldn't put it past Laura to meet me on the ground with a double barrel shotgun.” “But you weren't yourself, with the wolfing.” “Maybe,” he said. “But I've always loved Maria. And… Laura knows that.” “Shit,” Rica said. “I've been there. And it isn't fun.” “No. But I think… I think we'd made our peace with it. Or I thought we had. And then with everything… anyway, my point is I think I've used my get out of jail free card already. But we found your kryptonite: awkward erections.” “Awkward erections are everybody's kryptonite. Except, ironically, Superman’s. Why else would he wear pants that tight?” “Just when I thought an erection couldn’t get any more awkward.” “You did kind of deserve that,” she said. “Yeah,” he said. “Probably.”

02/20/15

  06:22:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 546 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: Responsibility

“It doesn’t feel right,” Clod said. Ken sighed, and gave her an indulgent smile. “It shouldn’t.” But the smile faded. “Look, I like Paul. And I feel... responsible for him, and everything that's happened. But he's right. He and Rica, they aren't... expendable. But given the choice of losing the entire mission or losing the two of them- it's arithmetic.” “I'm glad it's so easy to dehumanize us.” “It isn't,” Ken protested. “Don't think for a moment that every single soul lost on the Perseus and the Moon isn't a weight on me. But my job is to make sure there are as few of them as possible- and if that means tossing two astronauts into the void to save the rest, it's what we do- fucked up as that sounds.” “I know you've been through a lot. Losing Martin that way...” he sighed. “The Moon can function without an administrator, since most of the big decisions get made planetside, anyhow. But the Perseus... it requires a different kind of discipline. And leadership. It's not an easy role to have thrust on you, and particularly not under the circumstances. But we hired you to do the job because you had the right skills, and the right kind of potential. You can do this. And if the time comes, you will. If I’d ever had any doubts about that, there’d be somebody else in your seat right now.” “I’ll get it done,” she said, “but I’m sure as hell not happy about it.” “And that’s why you get to sit in the fancy seat.” “Yeah,” she said, and turned off the monitor. She sighed, and marched towards the storage pods. Levy was sitting near the entrance, sweating. “Status?” “Moist,” he said. “But just about done.” “Reservations?” she asked. “Some,” he said. “I don’t like the idea of us locking them up again- especially when this time… it feels different. Last time we were just trying to make sure Rica had an easy transformation. This time… it kind of feels like our reactor’s gone critical. And there’s nothing to do but hope the safety protocols work and we don’t melt down. But… I guess I take some comfort in that it’s like kenneling.” “Hmm?” “My family had a dog, Mittens. Cute little long haired Chihuahua. She loved to go on trips with the family. But she got ludicrously carsick. I’m pretty sure my parents were still finding vomit places when they sold their car ten years later. So the next year, on our big family vacation, we decided to put her up in a shelter. So we put her in her little carrier, hoping it would catch most of the projectile spew… and then nothing. Something about being in the kennel, it made her feel safe and I think kept her from running around and… well, anyway, the point was, we drove all the way to the kennel and she was fine, so we decided to just try taking her with us. And so long as she was inside her kennel, she was cool. So I’m trying to think of it as kenneling them. Except…” “That in this case instead of painting the walls with vomit they’d be doing it with our blood and entrails?” “In a nutshell.”

02/13/15

  06:21:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 501 words  
Categories: Lunacy

Lunacy: Zenith

“So we're concerned that you two are going to wolf out when we get closer to Mars?” Clod asked. “It's a possibility,” Paul said. “Likelihood?” Clod asked. “Probability is for crap in this case,” Paul said. “I could tell you one in four- but if that one is the outcome in the real world, then people have a one in one chance of getting hurt.” “So we should take precautions,” she said. “But this time I'm taking a tablet,” Rica said. “And I'd like my own room.” “I don't know if that's a good idea,” Paul said. “If you are going to have issues. I want to be there. To keep you from hurting yourself.” “Or anybody else?” she asked. “The way you stopped Alisa?” Clod's mouth dropped open. “If it comes to it,” Paul said. “And if it comes to it, I'd want you to stop me, too.” She knew her reaction was more aggressive than usual- it was all she could do not to attack him outright. She had enough perspective to know she wasn’t in her right mind, and forced herself to say, “Okay.” “Levy and I will gather up supplies. He rigged together some modifications. We should be able to have a little more power than last time, and we’ve hooked up one of the burners from the lab, so we can have some warm meals, at least for the first few days.” “You okay?” Clod asked. “Profoundly not,” Rica said. “Want to talk about it?” she asked. “Where to start… Paul murdered my girlfriend, and it’s hard not to think that a part of his reasoning was that she was a threat to his domination. And I’m now strong enough to threaten his dominance, and I’m about to be locked in a small cell with him and a convenient excuse for why ‘Two men enter, one man leave.’” “Levy?” Clod asked. “I think I finally understand his fascination with Thunderdome.” “That’s reason enough to worry about you,” Clod deadpanned. “But I feel really… vulnerable is probably the right word. Everything feels threatening. Everything puts me on edge. And I’ve always been shy. And introspective. And maybe a bit neurotic. But now those things make me want to fucking tear out the world’s throat.” She was shaking, and Clod reached out a hand to comfort her. “Don’t,” Rica said, and her voice was mostly growl. “I can feel it,” she said, and a tear ran over the lip of her eyelid. “I’m losing control of myself. And as… scared as I am, of Paul, I’m just as scared of hurting anybody else. I hate that Lisa’s dead- but I’m just as scared of becoming her.” “It’s different, now,” Clod said. “We know things we didn’t, then. We recognize the signs. And Paul’s been through all of this once, now. If we knew then what we’ve learned, maybe we could have helped Lis, but…” Clod reached for her, hesitated, then touched her arm, “you’re going to be okay.”

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 ... 38 >>

Nicolas Wilson is a writer and journalist. An archive featuring hundreds of short stories, comics and essays can be found here.

Search

  XML Feeds

powered by b2evolution free blog software