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"Science Fiction" means—to us—everything found in the science fiction section of a bookstore, or at a science fiction convention, or amongst the winners of the Hugo awards given by the World Science Fiction Society. This includes the genres of science fiction (or sci-fi), fantasy, slipstream, alternative history, and even stories with lighter speculative elements. We hope you enjoy the broad range that SF has to offer.

The Doctor

Neal Cline writes all kinds of things but particularly loves science fiction. He lives in Dallas, Texas.

"But I didn't KNOW she was an alien!"
The doctor just stared at me.
"I mean, she was perfectly human, doc. Well, except for the eyes. And the tail. And... other stuff. Ok, I knew she was alien, all right? But I'd been drinking all night and she was really hot, y'know?"
The doctor looked down at his charts.
"As drunk as I was, she could'a been an elephant. So we danced and talked and had a few more drinks and we went to my place. It was just one night, doc. She disappeared by morning. And now--this."
The doctor said, "Hmmm."
"Doc, c'mon, we're both men of the world, right? You've been around the block, right? Who hasn't had a one-night stand? Let's be real here."
The doctor said nothing.
"Talk to me, doc. Give. I'm really worried. What have I got? Is it an alien STD? Some kind of intergalactic AIDS?"
He lowered his voice. "Am I gonna die, doc?"
The doctor shook himself. "No, you're not dying."
The man sat back. "Thank God. Thank God. What a relief. But I still got this... whatever it is. What do I do about that?"
The doctor finally met his eyes. "I'd say you have about nine months to figure it out."
The End
This story was first published on Thursday, September 26th, 2019

Author Comments

As a kid I watched James T. Kirk making out with every hot alien girl he met without ever facing any consequences. I wanted to turn that trope on its head. This is also my first story in which I didn't like the main character.

- Neal Allen Cline
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