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 110, Volume 11 -- May 2007


, and welcome to the new look for Aphelion!

As you can see, we've made a few changes to the layout and format. Rob Wynne sweated and slaved over the changes for several months in order to bring you this updated layout. Everyone at Aphelion is very pleased with the result. We hope that you will be pleased as well.

Also, one of the biggest changes is that all the sections of the zine are now on separate pages, accessible from the navigation bar over to the left of your screen. That means that there are no longer any huge delays in page downloads. No more endless index page, either. Everything should be faster, cleaner, and less confusing on each page.

Along with the changes to the layout, I hope to resume writing book reviews within the next couple of issues. I have a huge backlog of things that have been sent to me, with more arriving every day. Also, I hope that we can start up the Interviews section again, as well as other sections that have been overlooked in the past.

By the way, how did you like the cover for this issue? Aphelion has attracted the attention of pro artist William R. Warren, Jr. who whipped out that little "crowd pleaser" of a cover as a sort of audition. He said that he'd be open to contributing cover art as often as his schedule permits. And he offered to do a few story illos, on the condition that he be allowed to read the story ahead of time. He would rather make his artwork fit the story than just offer up "generic" bits that might or might not actually fit with a given tale. He also came up with a wonderful suggestion for a new story series that would be based on the spacecraft he invented for the cover, and their mission. There will be more details available on a new page just as soon as we can whip one out. So be forewarned, Aphelion is about to add a third shared universe series to our featured  Nightwatch and Mare Inebrium series. This will be tailored to the hard science crowd and will feature near-future tech in an exploration of our own solar system. This series will fit in between the strict structure of Nightwatch and the "anything goes" structure of the Mare Inebrium series. More details to follow as they develop.

ApheliCon 3 will be happening in the next week or so. The date will be May 12th, the place will be here at Casa Vila, and the time will be from whenever the guests begin to arrive until the last guest reluctantly departs. Directions are as follows: Chose your best route to Athens, Ga. and get on Highway 29 North towards Danielsville. Roughly five miles from Athens you will find the turnoff for Moons Grove Church Road on your left. Casa Vila is roughly 7/10s of a mile from that intersection. Here is a link to a page of photographs of various landmarks between Athens and Casa Vila: Landmarks to Casa Vila Lyn and I hope to see you here!

Other news: There has been some talk in the Lettercol about running flash fiction - and other types of story - contests inside the forum itself. Most of the details are in a folder of the Administrivia section and seem to have the support of many Lettercol contributers. As the publisher, I'm not in the least opposed to the idea. I don't have time for it myself, but this one seems to be self-regulating so I'd say go for it. If it becomes a bandwidth problem, I'll have to call a halt to it, but otherwise it sounds all right with me. My only objections are that it'll take up some time that writers would usually spend on longer stories for the main part of the zine, not all readers of the zine read the Lettercol and thus won't get in on the fun, and that I'd like the winning entries to be included in a special section that the staff and I would have to add to the regular monthly issues, somewhere. This will all have to be worked out in the near future, of course.


Cover art by William R. Warren, Jr.

Serials and Novellas

The Solar 1 Incident
by C.A. Massa
The story of two distinct races battling over an ice-world supposedly rich in minerals and valuable jewels. Ancient alien prophecies foretell doom if the great conflict does not cease, but it seems that neither species is prepared to yield the frozen planet to the other.

Shadow Dancers
by Dale L. Willett
How could Sergeant Pete Gordon positively identify the body of his high school classmate on the battle-field and then learn from his friend's parents that their son was still in Louisiana?

On The Corner of Galaxy and Fifth
Part Two of Five
By Rob Wynne and Jeffrey Williams
A stranger's mysterious death lands Trauma and his companions in trouble with the authorities, but he soon discovers that this is the least of his worries. (Read Part One here.)

Short Stories

Manila Envelope
By Robert Starr
The key to David's revenge on the woman who had stolen the love of David's father -- and David's inheritance -- had finally arrived, in a simple manila envelope.

By E. S. Strout
They had succeeded in retrieving a massive piece of a glacier from 20,000 years in the past. Okay, their aim had been a little off ...

By Martyn Taylor
Despite the size of the haul from the body of Donkey and Weasel's latest victim, Weasel knew they had picked the wrong victim to mug. Especially with the coppers in an uproar over the Ripper murders!

The Rapture
By Daniel Devoto
Although the Bible said that it would be the faithful that rose up into the sky, in the end, it was the Godless who left the Earth in their spaceships. Those who stayed behind could finally live according to God's word ...

Full Circle
By Ezra T. Gray
They say that what goes around, comes around, and the wicked shall reap what they sow. Of course, things are never that simple.

The Way of the Warrior
By Michael G. McLaughlin
For the honor of the Broadhagh clan and an end to war, Briana must fight the warrior chieftain Kilian of the Coinneach. Could her wits and agility match his strength and experience?

In Deep Cover
By Mark Dykeman
Sander T. Anderson was one of the most successful evangelists in the ... business. Of course, no one knew that he was collecting faith as well as cash.

The Door
By Saki Channing
She found the brass rod while searching for the notebook that held every poem she'd written since junior high. And then she found the door, hidden behind a bookcase that hadn't been moved since before she moved into the apartment.

***Best Short Stories of 2003***

Last Man Standing
By L. G. Carillo
Trevor was in San Diego trying to close a deal when the Korean nukes fell. Now he had to get back to his family in Los Angeles ...

The Treasure of Agrinothe
By Sharon Partington
Brak of Calmor was the best thief in the Thirty Kingdoms. But the job he had planned would take all his strength, skill, and luck -- and then some.

The Case of Donald Phelps
By Cameron Neilson
Donald Phelps insisted that his wife had been taken by aliens. The police, of course, had other ideas. Dr. Lopp hoped to use hypnosis to find the truth ...

The Killer's Choice
By John Biggs
Molina was finally offering him a way out. All he had to do was kill one child ...

***Best Short Stories of 2004***

A Path of Ramble and Mist
By Jaimie L. Elliott
Jeremy only wrote sword-and-sorcery tales. He never expected to have to live through one.

By Jim Rudnick
Miguel came to confess that he had been pursued by demons ever since he stole the strange silver locket from a dying man. The priest was more than ready to listen.

Beyond Sapiens
By Noel Carroll
She had been born different, with a brain a hundred times denser and more efficient than any normal human. Leaving the Earth with only her hundreds of artificially-gestated children for company seemed preferable to life among the inferior masses...

Helen Damnation
By Robert Moriyama
Helen 'Damnation' Mackay was the toughest Law Enforcement Officer in the Port Arthur lunar colony. When they told her to drop her investigation of one of the colony's founders, the results were predictable.

***Best Short Stories of 2005***

Uncle ... Uncle
By Robert Starr
People thought there was something odd about Karl Reusmensuen. They were right. But if they ever met his uncle...

By I. D. Weis
He's a tough guy, hired muscle in a city that makes Bosch depictions of Hell and Bedlam seem tame. Trying to hang on to his humanity and still get the job done isn't easy.

The Jazz-Jazz
By Dan Edelman
Every Mandaroy soldier was deadly beyond belief, but Kai Ferracane was the Dagian Guard, last survivor of the best of the best. It was time for him to show the Scorpio Gemfire troops exactly what he could do.

***Best Short Stories of 2006***

The Importance of Being Khan
By Gregory Adams
The crazy psychic told Warren Pohmer that Warren was the reincarnation of Genghis Khan. He had to be crazy to say that, right?

Blue Roses
By J. A. Howe
Transgenic plants had all but wiped out unmodified species, in spite of Tab's best efforts to preserve them. What would she do when the last "antique" rose died?

By Mike Driver
Jeff thought that working as an assistant groundskeeper cum gravedigger sucked. And that was before graves started opening from the inside!

***Best Mare Inebrium Stories 2004 - 2006***

Just Another Day at the Office
By N. J. Kailhofer
The alarm came from the R&D Department. It was always the R&D Department that caused the most trouble...

The Customer is Always Right
By Bill Wolfe
All things come to they who wait- Even if they wait forever.

Helen in Wonderland
By Robert Moriyama
In the Port Armstrong lunar colony, Helen Damnation McKay has no equal. In the Mare Inebrium however, she may have met her match!

Enter The Dragon
By B. H. Marks
When one seeks vengeance to the exclusion of all else, one may find in the end that all the best laid plans go awry -- if one picks the Mare Inebrium as a hunting ground.

The Kitten Box
By Gareth Lyn Powell
What is the true nature of man? And if you knew that, how would you measure it? Willing to bet your life on it?

A Fish Out Of Water
By Linda Kelly
Some bars don't know how to deal with a patron who is obviously drugged out of their mind, but at the Mare Inebrium, intoxication is just a state of mind...

Deus Ex Machina
By Wishbone
You'd would think that having proved that some planet's major deity was actually an alien Sociology Professor would be enough for one student's lifetime. But now Robert Landis had to survive the wrath of the disillusioned natives he'd "inconvenienced" with his secular revelation.

Poetry and Filk Music

A Modest Proposal
by Richard Tormello

The Critics
by Gary William Crawford

Ghost Runner
by Thomas D Reynolds

by Aurelio Rico Lopez III

Intergalactic RV People
by John Grey

The Raven's Deliverance
by James Matthew Byers

by Richard H Fay

Skimming Rocks on a Pond, Called 'Me'
by Bryon D. Howell

Best Poetry of 2003

Into The Trap
by Dandan Xu

Poetry, Blood, and Cyanide
by Cyrus Mahan

The Feast of Samhain
by Terry Lowenstein

Snake Dreams
by Matthew J Hewitt

The Grove
by William Bolen

The Unknown Man
by Lanaia Lee

Best Poetry of 2004

Coming Home
by Gareth Lyn Powell

Flying Again
by Danny Erin

Recollections Of A Gentleman
by Mike Rasmussen

Robot Berserk
by John Grey

Tech's Lament
by Steven Utley

by Steven E McDonald

Best Poetry of 2005

The Battle is Over
by Thomas Reynolds

The Bear
by Mari Ness

The Colony
by John McKevitt

Goes Around, Comes Around
by Jan Logsdon

Meat Machine
by Bill Wolfe

OI! People of Earth!
By Gareth Lyn Powell

And Beyond
by John Erickson

The Brazenest Whore In Syria
by Lea Ann Douglas

The Carnival of Freaks
by Thomas Reynolds

Existence Enough
by David Siegel Bernstein

Fairy Tale A Sestina
by Kathleen McCarthy

Me and My Shadow
by Daniel C Smith


Dream Songs of Lore: Superhuman
by Jaimie L. Elliot
In the first part of an ongoing series, Jaimie Elliot explores some of the rich stories found in less familiar folklore and mythology.

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