Aphelion Issue 278, Volume 26
November 2022
Long Fiction and Serials
Short Stories
Flash Fiction
Submission Guidelines
Contact Us
Flash Writing Challenge
Dan's Promo Page

Aphelion: The Webzine of Science Fiction and Fantasy

Issue 101, Volume 10 -- April 2006

Issue 102, Volume 10 will be online 1st week of May, 2006.

"And if you believe that- you'll buy this watch..."
Saint Robere Guilams


Since January 27th, 1997 when Aphelion first went online.

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The Usual Rant from Aphelion's Senior Editor:

Hello again, at last. Things happen, as you well know, without our wish or want. But the ratio of good to bad things always seems to have a way of evening out - at least in the long run.

Among all the problems that have plagued me over the last few months, several blessings have also occured. So I can't gripe too much. Not really. Although roadblocks have been thrown in the way, many detours have also presented themselves for my exploration. Events still proceed apace.

The wedding is still on, ApheliCon 2 is still on, the Tri-Magnum rebuild is still going forward... Life is still good. Everything isn't perfect, but it is bearable. Most problems are non-trivial, yet only annoying in magnetude. Nothing tragic has derailed the future.

There's not a lot for me to rant about. Besides, this issue is a month late already. I'm going to shut up now and let you get to the stories.

Well? What are you waiting for? Kick back and start reading!

Back to work, for me...


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

Tell us what you think in Aphelion's Lettercol!

I'd like to thank those of you who have sent e-mails or signed into the Lettercol for your feedback. Keep those messages coming, folks! Without those messages we will never know what we need to improve upon. Hope you like the improvements so far!

Aphelion Staff:

Dan Hollifield
Senior Editor, Publisher
Iain Muir
Poetry/Filk Editor
Robert Wynne
Robert Moriyama
Short Story Editor
McCamy Taylor
Assistant Short Story Editor
Jeffrey Williams
Production Editor/Serials Editor
Ralph Benedetto, Jr.
Assistant Serials Editor
Roger Bennett
Senior Editor Emeritus
Cary Semar
Short Story Editor Emeritus

Serialized Stories & Novellettes

  • Lucinda May: A Love Story
    By Pavelle Wesser
    In the world of the future, stealing each other's 'parts' has become a hot commodity. Those who live by the illusion of love in a world governed by bots and the fear of Psych City stand to suffer mercilessly in their desire. Meet Martin, and enter the never-ending cycle of destruction this world has wrought upon his life.
  • Sin
    By Patrick R. Burger
    No eternal reward will forgive us now for wasting the dawn, Jim Morrison said. But when barbarians fall into snow stained red with their own blood as the sun shines overhead, what then...?

  • Nightwatch: CSM-115 Part One
    By Jeff Williams
    "Toward the end of the day, Alan Shepard, chief of the Astronaut Office, took the microphone in Mission Control to give the crew a public and official, if mild, reprimand. 'I just wanted to tell you,' he said, 'that on the matter of your status reports, we think you made a fairly serious error in judgment here in the report of your condition.' Carr accepted the rebuke: 'Okay, Al. I agree with you. It was a dumb decision.' And that was that."

    (Benson and Compton, SP-4208, 6 August 2004)

    A new shared universe series: Nightwatch, under the direction of Jeff Williams.

Short Stories

  • The One-Eyed Dragon
    by Brian C. Petroziello
    Something big, nasty and savage has been leaving a trail of fire and death from the Far East to New York City. Of course, now that it's on their turf, it's up to Detectives Minelli and Mulhearn of the Special Crimes Section to find the beast -- and put it down.

  • The Disappeared Man
    by E. S. Strout
    The Medicare Research Center's longevity project promised a chance at a longer, healthier life. Matt Aldrich, suffering from heart problems that would probably kill him sooner than later, signed up when chest pains made 'sooner' look too close for comfort. But Jack Simms discovered that volunteering for the project meant that Aldrich was cut off from the rest of the world -- and that made him more than a little curious.

  • Of Fast Cars and Slow Karma
    by George T. Philibin
    Jeffery was having a rough time. Someone who seemed to know everything about him and his wife Jean was screwing with him, putting Jean's picture on counterfeit money and dispensing it (along with some rude remarks) to them (and only to them) from an ATM machine. And that was just the beginning ... Jeffery soon learned that what goes around comes around in very strange ways.

  • The Blessed
    by Justin Steel
    For generations, the humans on Dracus had been blessed by the Lord with prosperity and peace unheard of in the rest of the noisy and noisome galaxy. And all it cost them was the occasional small offering.

  • ..Bargain at the Price
    by Neil Davies
    Steve Drake was an independent Trader always on the edge of bankruptcy. He couldn't afford to be picky about the Trades he took on -- and anyway, the job on Szuilta seemed too good to pass up. Big pay, low-risk cargo ... if rumors and superstition scared other Traders away, so much the better for Drake and his partners aboard The Seven Deadly Sins.

  • The Zimmerman, Captive of the Dar
    by Kevin James Miller
    Henry Zimmerman, one of the chief advisors to the President, found himself kidnapped after his bodyguard was slaughtered before his eyes. But his captors were no ordinary terrorists or foreign agents -- and their demands were out of this world.

  • Teddy Bears and Demons
    by Matthew Scott Baker
    Tasha's obsession with her ragged and downright smelly old teddy bear drove Phillip crazy. And the story she told to justify it only made things worse.

  • The Mistake
    by Rick McQuiston
    Anne had made a mistake -- not a terribly unusual one, but one that was going to cost her life. She could never have guessed how far her husband Henry's jealousy would take him. But Henry was not immune to error, either.

  • End of the Line
    By B. H. Marks
    The Final Frontier wasn't much of a frontier anymore, and there was no room for the independent spacers like Captain Deke 'Deep' Waters. Still, Captain Dale Carruthers knew how much he owed to Waters and his contemporaries.

  • Poetry and Filk Music

  • Wadhalla
    By Pavelle Wesser

  • The Mare Inebrium

    The Mare Inebrium
    Shared Universe Project...

    I open up my own Spaceport Bar to other writers!
    This link takes you to the full introduction to the project.
    The Mare Inebrium Starter Kit.
    --Updated 2/7/2004--

    This is a link to all the background information for the Mare Inebrium stories so far.
    This is a must read for all Mare Inebrium writers and fans!

    Tales of the Mare Inebrium
    All the Mare Inebrium Stories to date.

    The banner above links to
    all the Mare Inebrium Stories on one page!

    A Timeline of Bethdish: Updated 6-28-05

    All the Nightwatch Stories to date.

    The Nightwatch Archives

    The Nightwatch Series Bible


    • The Pollwatchers!
      by Cary Semar
      Aphelion's Cary Semar turns his eye towards the 2004 political scene.

    • Dan Hollifield Reviews:
      The Tower of Morkai

      Book 3 of the Thran Chronicles
      A review of the 3rd Thran novel by H. David Blalock.

    • Double Wide
      by Jim Parnell
      The collected wisdom of Bubba
      WARNING: Contains Language.

      Aphelion proudly presents the installments of Double Wide all on one page of links. We wanted to make sure that the wit and wisdom of Bubba wasn't lost for new readers, so we made a mini-archive list of just the Double Wide features.
    • Aphelion Banners
      And banner artwork for links.

      If you want to link to Aphelion and want more than a text link, then this page is for you. Some of these banners are finished, but most of them lack only my adding text to make them complete. Unfinished banners can be completed and e-mailed to you within 8 days. The banner HTML code-- and image --can be e-mailed on request, or can be more simply copied from the "View / Page Source" option in your web browser. Finished images can be copied from the banner artwork page itself. An exchange of links or banner links is always welcome.
      Link Swap E-mail should be sent to: Dan Hollifield

    • A Challenge to Writers...
      Not a contest, but a series of ideas to spark off a story. Challenge 1 is the paintings of Daniel Hannaquand, Challenge 2 is a collection of narrative hooks composed by Dan Hollifield.
    • Aphelion Links Page
      Click here to see the Links Page. Our fellow E-zines, Astronomy, research material, entertainment, and much, much more!

    • Aphelion IRC Chat
      Information about an underused feature for Aphelion. IRC Chat is a fun way to talk to our readers, writers, staff members, and other netizens. This link takes you to a basic intro and provides further links to the IRC software that you can download for free. Look for new updates as we refine this feature.
    • Aphelion JAVA Chat
      --Repaired 3\25\2003--
      For a quick look at the JAVA chat client, this link launches a new browser window that takes you to a Log-in form for a JAVA-based chat in your browser window. No special programs are needed. This will be a very simple, but passable IRC client, very no-frills. This will also tell you if there's anyone else in the chatroom, by the way.

    Read more great stories from the

    Aphelion Archives

    Aphelion Archives


  • Image Copyright (c) 1997 by Laura Butler

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