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Original Science Fiction and Fantasy every weekday. Welcome! We publish very short science fiction as broadly defined: sf, fantasy, slipstream, etc. Please read today's short story below. Browse topics in the sidebar, and read what intrigues; subscribe via email to receive each story in your inbox for free; and consider becoming a paying member to ensure we can keep paying authors and providing stories to all.

The Relic

Ethan Noll writes short stories and poems. There are very few things that he enjoys more than crafting a creative and aesthetically pleasing sentence. Writing gives him an opportunity to express ideas that he can't usually verbalize in his daily life.
I saw it sitting in the corner of the bar: a hulking metal contraption, one of the first models ever made. Once it had been considered a technological miracle, but now it was nothing but a piece of vintage decoration.
I started thinking about what life was like back then, before time machines were perfected and mass produced. It was probably a lot more exciting. Nothing has really surprised us since.
The End
This story was first published on Thursday, November 26th, 2020


I wanted to write this story using as few words as possible. As a devout fan of punk music since my preteen years, I've always appreciated simplicity and brevity in art. I don't have the attention span to write an epic novel, but I do my best to distill epic themes into little, bite-sized stories. In this story, I focused on the evolution of technology, how even the most groundbreaking innovations gradually become mundane with the passing of time. I hope you enjoyed it.

- Ethan Noll
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