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Aphelion: The Webzine of Science Fiction and Fantasy

Issue 114, Volume 11 -- September 2007

Editorial

Hello, and welcome to Aphelion Webzine!

First off, the Aphelion staff has asked me to move the monthly upload date for new issues from the 1st of each month to the first Sunday of each month. This will help prevent various offline, real-world difficulties from making us miss our self-imposed deadlines. I don't see any problem with this, so we'll start off with the October issue coming out on October 7th rather than the 1st.

Secondly, Casa Vila has suffered another loss. On Wednesday, August 22nd, our beloved poodle Willie finally succumbed to the rigors of old age. He passed quietly, free from pain, while in the arms of my wife that evening just after I got home from work. He was 25 days shy of his 19th birthday. He was laid to rest in a plain pine coffin, built by my own hands, in the back yard of Casa Vila. A lock of his hair was placed in a glass vial, sealed against the elements, and burried alongside the headstone marking the grave of my second wife, Cindy Nelms. He'd missed her ever since she died. Now they are together again.

My wife Lindsey and I also loved Willie with all our hearts. He was our friend, our guardian protector, our companion, our loving court jester and clown. He gave us unconditional love, which we gladly returned. He always let Lindsey know when someone approached the house, while I was at work. He made it plain to all that he would give his life to pretect her against all odds. It is only fitting that he died in her arms, secure in the love she returned to him.

I hope you will all understand when I say that I don't really feel up to writing a longer Editorial, or the book reviews that I had planned for this issue.

Willie Perry-Hollifield

Willie Perry-Hollifield
Sept. 9th, 1989 -- Aug. 22nd, 2007
"He was a good boy..."

"If there are no dogs in Heaven,
then when I die I want to go
where they went."
Will Rogers, 1897-1935

I now return you to your regularly scheduled reading material...

Dan

Serials and Novellas

Magic And The Heart
Part Two of Four
By McCamy Taylor
Magic is easy. The human heart is much more difficult to master. This is what Prince Marc of Suunland discovers when he enlists the aid of a powerful magician.who was once his mother.s lover--- to help him find his younger brother who has disappeared under mysterious circumstances.
(Read Part One here.)

The Blind Collaborators
By Lee Alon, Nathan J Kailhofer, Iain Muir, TaoPhoenix, and Gareth D Jones
When things start going wrong on the orbital habitat Astropolis, the only people who can help are the ones who know nothing about it.

The Shadowy Man
By Elena Clarke
The battle of reason versus magic played out in an age of enlightenment. When his royal charge disappears under mysterious circumstances, a rational man must look to the shadows for answers.

Short Stories

Walking the Cobblebones
By Jaimie L. Elliott
Girthbottom the necromancer must solve the grisly murders plaguing the Cobblebones, the walled city of the dead within the city. After all, there is evidence that something undead is the culprit, and undeath is his business...

Daddy's Game
By A. K. Sykora
The near-immortals used technology to keep themselves amused, replaying the great battles of history using simulations that gave them a god's-eye view -- and god-like control -- of the proceedings. And Daddy was an acknowledged master of the game.

The Moonborn
By L. J. Geoffrion
Nokomis was the first child born on the moon, and it showed in her elongated form and unearthly grace in lunar gravity. Her uniqueness made her something of a celebrity -- and more.

By Traditional Means
By Mike Driver
The supermarket chain wanted to position itself as the best source for food grown and prepared the old-fashioned way. Dale Webster, senior buyer, was sent to witness the "traditional means" used by one of the chain's suppliers so he could help with the marketing effort. If only he had paid more attention in the meeting ...

Rain
By Craig Cornwell
Many people hate their jobs. Frank Castleford had better reason than most -- he felt like the whole world depended on him, and he wasn't sure he could handle the load. And of course it was raining again.

Soft Laughter
By Danny Raven
Alex had made an emergency landing on what was supposed to be an uninhabited planet. The only problem was whether he could last long enough for a rescue ship to arrive with no food except the meager supplies on his ship. But the planet wasn't uninhabited after all...

A Case of Lycanthropy
By Jeani Rector
Susan was an ordinary woman with an ordinary life -- aside from the husband she suspected of infidelity -- until the stray dog bit her.

Transport by Design
By Richard Tornello
Undesirable elements arise in every society. The opportunity to remove those elements -- without killing them outright -- and at the same time ensure the survival of civilization was irresistible. But Captain Arthur Philip was beginning to have his doubts about the whole mission.

Those Who Came Before
By Aaron Bass
Technology and art were forbidden, but Arthur's inventive mind and clever hands couldn't resist drawing and tinkering and exploring the ruins left by Those Who Came Before. Lord Hawthorne was not amused. But Arthur had a way to avenge himself on Hawthorne and all those who allowed him to rule.

Christville
By Mark Edgemon
A fable of sorts, that answers the question "What would Jesus NOT buy?"

Results of Forum Flash Challenge for August 2007

Congratulations to David Alan Jones and ... me (Robert Moriyama), co-winners of the August 2007 Challenge. Our challenge entries were tied after a special run-off vote following a THREE-WAY tie at the end of the regular polling period! Check out "Altered Ego", "Penguin Boy", and four more snack-sized morsels of twisty goodness (after you read and comment on our other fine features, of course)... And check the Fun and Games folder of the Forum around September 9th for another impossible mission in the Flash zone!

Poetry and Filk Music

We're Already A Hydrogen Society
by Richard Tornello

The Splinter Dragon
by James Matthew Byers

Horrorku
by Richard H Fay

An Old Voice
by Terri Wachowiak

Features

The Idiot Box: Flash Gordon
By Terence Chua
Terence takes a look a the new Flash Gordon series

Writing On The Edge of the Wood: Where Do You Go For Inspiration?
By Gwen Knighton
Gwen spends some time pondering where inspiration comes from, and how to chase it down when it won't come to you.

Myth Conceptions: Mythic Masculinity
By Jaimie L. Elliot
Jaimie examines how shifting societal perspectives change the way we frame stories from mythology.


Aphelion Webzine is © 1997-2007 by Dan L. Hollifield