Posts Tagged ‘Mars’

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Cast of Wonders 320: Presumed Dead (Part 7)

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Presumed Dead (Part 7)

by Rick Kennett

The Xenoid hadn’t tried to cover up evidence of its theft. (Continue Reading…)

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Cast of Wonders 319: Presumed Dead (Part 6)

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Presumed Dead (Part 6)

by Rick Kennett

For a moment she puzzled over why the plants up ahead had all turned white and were sparkling under the sun. (Continue Reading…)

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Cast of Wonders 318: Presumed Dead (Part 5)

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Presumed Dead (Part 5)

by Rick Kennett

The map in her hand now showed only the blue-green of the sea. Apparently there was nothing but ocean ahead for the foreseeable future.

“Plain sailing form now on, Lazarus,” she said, turning to look for the spider, but could see it nowhere. (Continue Reading…)

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Cast of Wonders 317: Presumed Dead (Part 4)

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Presumed Dead (Part 4)

by Rick Kennett

Cy looked into her palm and said, “Mountains?” (Continue Reading…)

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Cast of Wonders 316: Presumed Dead (Part 3)

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Presumed Dead (Part 3)

by Rick Kennett

Night came quickly in these latitudes, dropping out of the late afternoon sky like a black weight. Though she thought it silly she didn’t much like the idea of coming across spiders in the dark. Not that she imagined there was a posse after her or that she might be ambushed. But the notion was hard to shake. The spiders were an unknown quantity. (Continue Reading…)

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Cast of Wonders 315: Presumed Dead (Part 2)

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Presumed Dead (Part 2)

by Rick Kennett

Half stumbling, almost tumbling, she made her way down the slope to the plain. The need for shelter and overwhelming curiosity had replaced the urgings of caution. (Continue Reading…)

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Cast of Wonders 314: Presumed Dead (Part 1)

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Presumed Dead (Part 1)

by Rick Kennett

Days later, while sheltering from rain that had lost its novelty, she decided the end had begun when George McClusky said, “So what do you suppose that is?”

That had been the moment. Everything leading up to it may have had a bearing, may have been a primer, but hadn’t been the trigger. Not the utter mental void of floating in space with only the whisper of her rebreather for company. Not when the McMurdo Sound disintegrated around her. Not even the battle itself. (Continue Reading…)

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Episode 173: Timelines

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This story marks our fifth appearance of Cy De Gerch. You can find all her previous adventures here.


TIMELINES

by Rick Kennett

 

The star Doloris B was shrivelling, collapsing in upon itself and growing hotter.

As Utopia Plain accelerated away, Captain Brown switched from aft view to forward where the star field was beginning to blue-shift. On the weapons repeater beside him the Terran ship was sliding into the sights. The repeater’s identification lights were on, blinking insistently.

At fire control Lieutenant Cy De Gerch stared at her weapons screen and said, “Range to targets now four point five million and closing.”

Across from her, Lieutenant Peters flipped back the plastic cover on the I.F.F. override and jabbed his finger down on the sensor panel. It lit with the words Genetic Code confirmed. 

“Identification Friend or Foe override operating, sir,” he said.

“Range four million and closing,” said Cy.

(Continue Reading…)

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Cast of Wonders 130: The Phobos Monolith


The Phobos Monolith

by Preston Dennett

True to her nature, Vasia ran without fear or caution across the Martian landscape.  She leaped in huge graceful arcs that any dancer would envy. Naira did her best to keep up, but because of legs, and she quickly fell behind.  How she wished she could rid herself of the cursed robo-walker that encased her legs so she could run like Vasia. Her sister’s body was strong and healthy.  Naira, unfortunately, wasn’t as lucky. It was a miracle that their parents had even let them outside, considering how protective they were.

“Hurry up, Naira!” Vasia yelled.  “Wait ‘til you see. It’s just a little farther.”

Naira huffed along at a steady pace.  Vasia wanted to show her a patch of crystals she had found.  They would, Vasia said, make a nice addition to their collection.

Seeing that Naira was catching up, Vasia turned and began running again.

Naira watched as her sister soared upwards.  Then she landed and disappeared into the ground.  A small puff of dust geysered upwards and settled instantly.

“Vasia!”

Naira increased her pace and knelt down where her sister had disappeared.  There it was: a small black hole in the ground, just large enough to swallow Vasia.
(Continue Reading…)

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Cast of Wonders 114: Now Cydonia (Staff Pick 2013)

Show Notes

Now Cydonia ran as Episode 71 back in March of last year. One reason I’m personally so proud of our win is the story’s author, Rick Kennett. Although I’ve never met him, he’s from my home town of Melbourne, Australia and I love that a fellow countryman writes such kick-arse stuff. I narrated one of his ghost stories for Pseudopod, the immensely creepy The Dark and What It Said which is flat-out the best evocation of how spooky and lonely the Australian bush can be. Rick is a talented writer and I’m always happy to hear his stories when they appear in the pod-o-sphere.


Now Cydonia

by Rick Kennett

Cadet Cy De Gerch bounced forward into the desert darkness, raised her arms in a defensive posture and, as best as a fourteen year could, barked, “Halt! Who goes there!”

There was no one there. There never was.

Cy jumped back, a slow leap in the low gravity, to her original position on the perimeter, her vacsuit moving easy like a second skin, to watch and wait and break the boredom as best she could until relieved. Out there was the desert she had trekked the past two years with her section of Martian Star Corps cadets. Out there was the countryside of Mars – cold and red and a billion years dead, littered with rocks, pocked with craters, filled with myths and ghost stories, most of which Cy didn’t really believe. Sergeant Kreeng – Old Get-It-Right – had known what he was doing when he’d set them perimeter guard duty consisting mostly of doing nothing. It was, she knew, a discipline of the mind.

(Continue Reading…)

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Cast of Wonders 89: The Carmel B Crazies


The Carmel B Crazies

by Rick Kennet

On the day she turned seventeen Cy De Gerch peered through a window into rusty red desert and saw her future squatting darkly in its launch cradle.

She’d been discharged from hospital an hour before and had made her quick way to Styx City Starport. Standing now at the window into Launch Cradle 3, her bag slung over the shoulder of her new Martian Star Corps tunic, she gazed through the glass like a kid outside a toy store. Utopia Plain, her new toy, smooth, black, ellipsoid, seemed to squat in its cradle amid a patch of the red desert of Mars. Recently repaired after a battle with Xenoid warships at Rigel, the starship’s liquid lines were unbroken but for the pressure tunnel extruded from her forward hatch. A thing of space, it seemed to sit impatient to lift into the pink-brown sky and the void beyond.

All her fears and excitements came flooding back – a feeling of elation at this new beginning aboard her first ship; a scary feeling too of coming adrift, separated from her family on Phobos and the surrogate family of her space cadet section, training days ended.

Inspecting herself in the window’s reflection, Cy adjusted her tunic sporting its new lieutenant’s bars and ran a hand through her short dark hair, wondering if she’d surprise her new captain with her age. She thought that she might. She was the first of her breed – a product of the Gartino genetics experiment – to qualify for active service. It all depended on what Captain Ralph Brown was like. Would he understand and appreciate her as a purpose-built person, trained and schooled seventeen years for this purpose? Or would there be suspicion and mistrust?
(Continue Reading…)

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Cast of Wonders 71: Now Cydonia


Now Cydonia

by Rick Kennett

Cadet Cy De Gerch bounced forward into the desert darkness, raised her arms in a defensive posture and, as best as a fourteen year could, barked, “Halt! Who goes there!”

There was no one there. There never was.

Cy jumped back, a slow leap in the low gravity, to her original position on the perimeter, her vacsuit moving easy like a second skin, to watch and wait and break the boredom as best she could until relieved. Out there was the desert she had trekked the past two years with her section of Martian Star Corps cadets. Out there was the countryside of Mars – cold and red and a billion years dead, littered with rocks, pocked with craters, filled with myths and ghost stories, most of which Cy didn’t really believe. Sergeant Kreeng – Old Get-It-Right – had known what he was doing when he’d set them perimeter guard duty consisting mostly of doing nothing. It was, she knew, a discipline of the mind.
(Continue Reading…)