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 107, Volume 10 -- December 2006 - January 2007

Issue 108, Volume 11 will be online in February, 2007.

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

Our Lettercol is once again available. The URL has changed, please update your bookmarks. Thank you for your patience. -- Rob


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

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The Usual Rant from Aphelion's Senior Editor:

Season's Greetings! Whatever you're celebrating, everyone at Aphelion hopes that you're having a good one!

Winter is upon us here in the northern hemisphere. A mild one so far, 'tis true, but colder days are not far off. Te stores are swarming with shoppers, the traffic is heavier, and - sadly - the Christmas lights along the roads are punctuated with police cars, ambulances, and wreckers flashing lights to warn of someone's having had an accident. Please be careful out there. We don't want to lose you to any mishaps. As my wife and I were cruising out and back to do our holiday shopping over the last couple of weeks we saw some nasty accidents, and not a few accidents waiting to happen. People are rushing out, then rushing back, and some of them aren't looking around all that much.

I can't stress it enough: Be careful, and get home safely to rejoin your families. Now is the season to re-affirm life and hope and joy. Time to seek out friends and family, and to join together against the winter's darkness. Time to pull together and give comfort to those in need, to take comfort in those who give, and to reassure each other that Spring will indeed return to the land. All very pagan-sounding, perhaps, but that is what happens when one tries to be all non-denominational. The common denominator ccomes down to celebrating the start of winter, and wishing for its swift passage into Spring.

So as we twirl in our Earthly pirouette, dash madly about our sun, swing gracefully about the center of our galaxy, and rush hither and yon as our universe expands - remember that all motion is but a dance of cosmic proportions. Some of us in a stately waltz, others in a courtship tango, and yet others twist again like we did last summer... We are all partners in the grand dance of the universe. And it behooves us to try not to step on too many people's toes.


PS: Start planning to come to ApheliCon 3 in May of 2007!

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

  • Nightwatch: Sed Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes?
    --Part Two--

    By Bill Wolfe
    Nightwatch isn't the only organization watching the world. The Collective--an organized group of powerful psychics--has been watching them! But when one of their own goes missing, who else but Nightwatch can they turn to for help? Who else, indeed?

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

Short Stories

  • Boundaries
    by Rob Bignell
    Tombaugh Research Station was a marvel in its own right, a three-acre self-contained environment with pocket versions of everything from high desert to rain forest. Its location on the surface of Pluto was even more remarkable. But five light-hours from Earth, problems that would be minor back at home could be lethal...

  • Blue Roses
    by J. A. Howe
    Tab was fighting a losing battle against the changes that were forcing plants, animals -- and even humans -- to adapt or die. The 'antique' flowers and plants she cultivated were failing, while strange and deadly variants spread across the world. But maybe it was time for her to change, on her terms.

  • The Turks
    by Derek Davis
    Brad and Lucy Harrington were doing their best to live their lives as usual, while the Turks lay siege to the walled city of Philadelphia. But the arms race was moving at an incredible pace -- from crossbows to flintlocks in a matter of weeks -- and they lived a little too close to the wall to ignore the huge cannonballs that fell in the neighborhood. And when the wall was breached...
  • An Alien Encounter of the Worst Kind
    by Joe Vadalma
    Bob Jones had heard about the whole alien-abduction thing, and he'd always figured that it was a crock. Then he was taken -- and worse, he was never going home. But what really got to him was having to compete with representative of other species for the title of Dominant Earth Life Form -- and losing!

  • Go On, Go There
    by Ben Ayers
    Was he sick? Or was he just changing? And was there anything he could do to stop it?

  • Under New York...
    by George T. Philibin
    Sam and Bert were veteran sewer workers. When the opportunity came for some lucrative overtime finding a blockage in the labyrinth of tunnels under New York City, they jumped at the chance. Then things got very complicated. And then they got even worse.
    ***Contains adult language***
  • Memories of Sky
    by Michael McNichols
    When the vampire William tired of the whole seduction and feeding game -- and a loss of control that drove him to kill someone he loved, he looked for a way out. The living alien spacecraft he found and salvaged gave him a way to withdraw -- all the way to Mars. Of course, Mars had its own challenges.

  • Dreaming of the Dreamers
    by Tamara Wilhite
    Much of the world was a radioactive ruin, and a lot of knowledge had been lost to the electromagnetic pulse effects of the war. But the Dreamer transformation -- genetic surgery that let a human swim and communicate with dolphins -- was still available in a few places, and Naya was more than ready to make the leap.

  • Cold Stone Killer
    by Craig Cornwell
    Dave Handel, the detective with the door to anywhere and anywhen, is called in to investigate the suspicious death of a big Philistine named Goliath. And matters are a lot more complicated than the version that made it into the Bible...
  • The Tree
    by Jeffrey Swencki
    Abe Jones was a special boy with a remarkable connection to his favorite tree and to the birds and animals that lived nearby. The prospect of moving away -- of being uprooted -- was not a happy one. But even the trees and animals knew he had to go.

Poetry and Filk Music

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

    Back Issues
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    Aphelion Submissions Guidelines Page

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    My storys and comments.

    A page of my own story links, with comments.
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