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Not just rockets & robots...
"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.

Science Fiction


Clones have been a much developed topic in science fiction for more than 70 years. Now that we know they're actually within the grasp of current technology, some of the thrill is gone. Yet, in the right hands clones continue to provide fertile ground for imagined futures worthy cautionary and ecstatic.

by Christine Amsden
My Dearest Susie,

What a delightful surprise to receive your letter in the mail! When my secretary handed it to me, I confess I did not know what to think. You are the first of my granddaughters to ever send me a letter (no, Dear, email does not count), and it simply swelled my heart to read it.
Published on Aug 25, 2022
by Sarah Bartsch
Ceri slammed the door, shaking the authentic antique wood frame, which meant the situation was worse than Ash had thought. He cringed, worried about making Dad angry, but Dad wouldn't care much about the stupid expensive door once he found out about Fluffy. Their parents were on holiday at the Mariana Trench resort, the current fashionable destination for the scientific elite. It was a boring place where pretentious jerks sat around hmming and oohing at each other, competing for the most expensive room in the place and pretending dehydrated food didn't taste awful. There was nothing else to do because it was a bunch of cramped, claustrophobic pods thousands of feet underwater. Dark and boring and a fad, and he hadn't wanted to go at all. Not even a little bit. Ceri was happy to be left behind, too, and it was her idea to have the party even though they'd been "expressly forbidden" from inviting friends over, what with the feline flu outbreak.
Published on Sep 5, 2014
by M. Bennardo
As I peer from the window of the third-story lab in Bingham Building, I can just see the other guy crossing the rain-slicked cobblestones of the quad. He's hunched over, defeated. In shock, probably. He has no bags, but he's leaving forever. Everything he owns is on his back or in his pockets--a cheap suit, two hundred bucks, and a bus ticket to Topeka. It's all because, a few minutes earlier, she studied the two of us--me and that other guy. Because she pulled out her magnifying glass and scrutinized every line of our bodies and faces, peered into our eyes, tapped our knees, checked how our hair met our scalps.
Published on Nov 19, 2012
by Derrick Boden
Bret woke with a piercing pain in his side, the roar of the battlefield still raging in his ears. The ceiling and walls were white. A white curtain hung at his left. A bag pumped liquid into his vein. His ragged breaths burned. The exoskeleton must've pushed through his lung. Could they fix that? God, he hoped so. Bret's fingers sought out his pocket. He withdrew a photo, damp with sweat and blood. The most beautiful woman in the world looked back, eyes just for him, soft lips curved into a perfect smile.
Published on Nov 24, 2015
by Gio Clairval & Cat Rambo
Every time they saw the apparition, it meant more acrobats would die. Someone would spot him: white trunks, white tunic, floating in the vast billowy confines of the Big Top's canvas ceiling. The nearest acrobat would let out a keening, grief-stricken wail. A body would fall, unfastened from the balloon that had kept it airborne. Then another would plummet, and other, until all lay broken on the ground, balloons spinning free. The billboards read: "Pale Glow, the Merciless Killer," and: "The Man of Mist Won't Stop Before All Acrobats Are Dead," and: "Pale Glow Hates the Circus!"
Published on Oct 22, 2013
by Tina Connolly
A knock on the door and a small boy slipped into his office. Dr. Adrian Forster (PHD) (MD) (JD) (TM) swore silently, the thread of his thought destroyed. It had been doing that lately. Harder and harder to regain his focus. Brutal once it slipped.
Published on Jun 12, 2018
by Kyle Davison Bair
"Hey hon, can you exchange the baby at the clinic after work? The replacement should be done by now." "So soon?" I turned around from the window. Coffee almost spilled from my cup, but I caught it in time.
Published on Jul 23, 2018
by Damara Dianne
***Warning. Adult Story. Please only Read if 18+ and Prepared***
Published on Jul 7, 2017
by Andy Dudak
The 3877th instance of Fingal Reginald Boyd can't believe what he's hearing. He is the first instance of the Boyd-dissociation to be denied reintegration. The skull of his meat puppet, with its landscape of memory and regret, suddenly seems very small. "I'm sorry," 3877 says. "Can you repeat that?"
Published on Jun 20, 2013
by Karl El-Koura

Published on May 17, 2022
by JG Faherty
id was sure he heard a note of envy in Bob's voice. "Yep. Hadn't even been test-driven yet. Practically right off the truck." "Ain't that sweet." "Comes with a ten-year warranty, too. Anything goes wrong, they fix it for free."
Published on Oct 25, 2010
by Eric S. Fomley
"Why won't you eat dinner," Otto asks. Its electronic voice buzzes from the corner of the dining room where its yellow eyes beam in the darkness. "Aren't you hungry?" Melody gives a sharp nod. She stands in the opposite corner from the bot, a stained teddy bear tucked under her arm. Her trembling fingers stroke the furry space between its ears. "Then eat," Otto says. "Sit with your parents and enjoy a meal with them. They want to spend time with you." Melody's parents sit at the table in the middle of the room. Her father shoves handfuls of spaghetti into his mouth, letting the sauce drip from his fingers. Her mother stares at the wall with catatonic eyes--a gentle moan tears from her throat. Otto admires its work. The clones are modified with chips that allow the bot to command their nervous systems. It can have them do anything the little girl wants. "I don't want to eat with them," Melody says, her voice faint. "They're scary, and they don't look like my mommy and daddy." She sniffles. "They look exactly like your parents," Otto says, in its most soothing tone. "They are genetic replicas." Otto wishes the memories and experiences could be replicated too, their behavior being the child's biggest complaint. But it has told her the impossibility of this seven times already. It wonders why the child can't just accept the gifts it has given her. "I want to leave," she whispers. "I want to go outside." "You know that's not possible," Otto says. "So why don't you sit, eat, and enjoy family time instead. You said you're hungry." The bot has Melody's mother turn and offer a crooked approximation of a smile. "I don't want to spend time with them," she says. Tears drip down her cheeks. "Very well," the bot says. Melody's parents stand from the table with rigid posture. They spin and march toward the basement door in the kitchen, for recycling in the bot's makeshift lab. Otto isn't sure how long it will be before the city is free of the flesh-eating smog of the nanite bomb. It still detects the swirl of nanites in the air surrounding the house on its internal sensors, along with the bone matter of skeletons littering the street. Melody's parents are somewhere among them, picked clean of biological material. The bot is trying to do it's best to serve their last request, to watch over Melody. Perhaps there is some error in the DNA of the replicas, some minor imperfection Otto missed that is causing the daughter to doubt their credibility. Otto will work to rectify the mistake for the next iteration. "No, stop," Melody says. "Wait." Otto makes the parents stop in the kitchen doorway. Melody takes a few steps towards them, looking up at her mom with red, puffy eyes. "My real mommy and daddy aren't coming home, are they?" "No. They are not," Otto says. It has covered this before with the girl, but this time it sees a shift in her body language, like its words have found a new resonance within her. Melody nods and wraps her arms around her replacement mother's waist. She sniffs and lets go, spinning around to face Otto. "I'm hungry. Maybe we can all eat together." "I think your parents would like that very much," the bot says. Its tone is bright, cheery. They sit together at the table, eating spaghetti, while Melody tries to pretend like she's not alone.
Published on Feb 9, 2022
by Marco Giandomenico
The experiment had been a success. I was staring at my clone, marveling at how different he looked from my self-image. He was a living reflection with new independence and he examined me with the same sense of wonder and bewilderment.
Published on Apr 17, 2014
by David Gill
The rocket sat on the launch pad, pointed up and into the dark grey sky. From the bleachers, Marcus Xian watched as he prepared to make history. His clone, a young boy, was up there, asleep in that capsule, waiting like some ancient seed, waiting for an oxygen-rich environment, for damp soil and sunlight after so many years in the cold blackness of space, waiting to emerge from his steel husk and set foot on soil they could not yet know the color of. The children waited, asleep, in that tiny capsule. Waited while the world hoped that this turned out better than all our other endeavors.
Published on Oct 29, 2014
by James Alan Gotaas
So I was just sitting slouched down at the kitchen table eating our usual breakfast: scrambled eggs cooked real dry and black bacon bits and charred toast. Mommo was standing at the e-eco-cooker drying more scrambled eggs and shouting up the stairs at Poppo. My older brother Nicky was sitting at one side of the table, pushing at his eggs with his fork and making strange faces, like he didn't much feel like eating eggs that morning. My little sister Suzy was sitting in her babyfloater, crying because Mommo wasn't feeding her yet. I was trying real hard to eat my eggs nicely, because Mommo had promised me double allowance that week if I ate without tempering, like she called it, and making Poppo yell at me. Anyway, Poppo finally came down, sort of in a hurry, fixing one of his funny old ties, and making funny faces to go along with it. Mommo gave him a mean look when she thought we weren't looking, but Poppo just smiled at her. So she slid his plate in front of him and sat down by Suzy to begin feeding her. Poppo just looked funny at the eggs for a while; he didn't even notice that I was being good and eating my hyperdry eggs. He finally picked up his fork and started moving the scrambled eggs around his plate.
Published on Aug 29, 2016
by Sarah Kanning
She took a Canadian one-way and left him with a closet full of her clothes, a cabinet full of her meds, and a wrung-out heart. So he came to us. “Pancreatic cancer,” he said. “She wanted a cleaner death. But I still can’t stand it.”
Published on Jul 1, 2021
by Kenneth S Kao
My name is...John.
Published on Apr 14, 2011
by Rich Larson
Suddenly I can feel someone else in the machine--another presence, another dancing pattern in the simulated synapses. Foreign and familiar at the same time. It can only mean one thing: after a decade and a half of uninterrupted neural mapping, of mass-scale solar consumption, I've finally done it.

I've made my first copy.
Published on Sep 28, 2022
by D. Thomas Minton
Brandon wanted to find a woman he could put his arm around and have her shoulder slide into the nook of his
Published on Jan 3, 2012
by Leila Murton Poole
Doesn't she?

I guide her tiny fingers to build the playdough fence, copying the real one daddy's building nearby. She giggles at our creation, her emerald eyes sparkling. Just like they always did.
Published on Sep 1, 2022
by Jen Nafziger
One day you'll find an eyelash in a small library book, a slight, black curve that's tucked into the margins like some long-forgotten tribute to the intoxicating text. You tap the hair against your finger, pull it close to view. The static of the world glues the intact follicle to the subtle ridges of your skin, your distinctive human fingertips. The lash belongs to someone who loved this book, like you, whose passion for the page deserved a human sacrifice. If only you could meet the woman who loved the story, too. 
 Then, you'll slide the eyelash into a test-tube, take it to the lab, and make yourself a clone (it isn't so expensive anymore). Clones, they grow like dandelions, and soon you'll have a friend, a cheery, egg-yolk yellow bud you can rub upon your cheeks. You discuss great novels while sharing Found Greens salad in the Hipster coffee place that's just out of your budget. You both have the same taste, you and the clone. Neither have much money, hence the libraries and food sharing.
Published on Aug 9, 2021
by Jane O'Reilly
Dr. Abram steps away from the waist high, rectangular tank. He has checked the readings for the final time. "It is ready," he says. "You can open it as soon as you want." There are twenty identical tanks in the room, individually numbered, a screen on the side of each one showing the status of contents. I know what they are, although not who they are. That is kept strictly confidential.
Published on Mar 8, 2019
by L'Erin Ogle
His face blurred around the edges, features smeared across bone, looms over me. "Your name is Layla," he says. I don't think it is.
Published on Oct 18, 2018
by Joshua P'ng
My bags were already slouched by the front door, when I called out that I was about to leave for my campus, glancing out the window to the ice cream van. Dad came from his office, wearing perpetual calmness on his face, which I had come to love about him. Mom was wiping the smell of cookie dough from her hands as she scurried to her place on the coach. "Mom, Dad," I began, as they positioned themselves, faces aglow for some closure for their boy who was finally moving out. "I just want to thank you for being wonderful parents. My life would not have been so enriched without your guidance and care." I said in what were the most honest words of my entire life.
Published on Feb 2, 2016
by Steven L Peck
She is sitting in the library, reading. I see her face glowing in the soft light of the magazine. The familiar face I've known every nuance of for the better part of my life. She blinks twice deliberately, turning the page. AS she does so, I see the radiance of the screen flicker in her face. Her legs are curled beneath her on the cozy, lab-grown-leather chair. She notices I'm standing in the door watching. She smiles, then goes back to reading. Should I tell her? I can't decide. The ethical debate is all over the map. Even the professionals don't have a clue and have not reached a consensus. The insta-polls on the highest hit sites are split 50-50. Although, "Ethics Now!!" is running 60/40 in favor of telling her. I watched her with the boys this morning. They were laughing about our holiday in Austria when she fell into the stream while trying to jump across it. A video replay from my headcam leaps onto the kitchen screen--one of the kids must have accessed for the hundredth time. It is funny. She makes the leap, lands on the other side on both feet and then spins her arms frantically as she loses balance and falls backward into the stream. Even I join the laughter.
Published on Jan 16, 2012
by Conor Powers-Smith
Usually Tyler allowed himself twenty or thirty pages of reading before considering the day truly begun, but he'd had time for no more than three pages when Marta knocked on the library door, took two steps into the room, and said, in the ringing voice she used in the house's larger spaces, "Someone at the door for you." "Okay," he said. "Coming." He'd never been able to make his voice carry the way Marta could; it was either speak normally, or shout. He could almost see his words fade and vanish somewhere in the forty-odd feet between Marta and himself.
Published on Jan 31, 2014
by Cat Rambo
He ignored Abraham. What had the old man ever given him beside disapproval and grief? Now Sean was taking himself and his shameful activities away, leaving Abraham with nothing to disapprove of. Sean didnt look at Abraham as he said, Theyre tools, Uncle. You dont need to worry. Ill be using them, not socializing with them.
Published on Sep 10, 2010
by Alter S. Reiss
When my copy walked into my bathroom with a pistol drawn, I wasn't even surprised. For one thing, while it'd been disturbing to see an exact copy of me walking around and doing things at first, I'd gotten used to it. That was why I'd had an android made to those specifications, after all. And while it wasn't great that it had gotten a weapon from somewhere and was planning on killing me, that wasn't too surprising. I'd been sending my copy into work as me ever since I'd got him, and one of the things I'd been doing with my new free time was catching up on my reading. So I knew how those stories went.
Published on Mar 27, 2018
by Gretchen Russell
The barista served Jenny a tired smile. "The usual for you two?" she asked, nodding towards Ken.

"For me, sure. For him, um...." Jenny's head rotated towards Ken, but her eyes remained fixed on the barista's pea-green visor.
Published on Nov 28, 2022
by Kelly Sandoval
********Editor's Note: Adult language in the story that follows*********
Published on Aug 27, 2021
by Steven Saus
Sarah pulls into the driveway, and we all start to whisper. The tension and arguments of the day melt away in the heat of the birthday candles being lit. Rover whines from the bedroom and one of us--hard to tell which in the darkened living room--shushes the dog. "Better that Rover whines instead of eating the cake," the person hiding behind the couch with me says. I nod before remembering that he probably can't see me either. We might argue later. We probably will, since we're a little too alike to get along comfortably. But right now we're all focused on Sarah, just waiting for her. As the last candle is lit, the whiff of butane reminds me of smoking. It reminds me of how badly I craved a cigarette when Sarah and I last argued.
Published on Dec 8, 2010
by Henry Szabranski
Simon would not say goodbye this time. He had worked hard enough, sacrificed enough, paid enough, to not say goodbye to his wife ever again. He leaned his head against the glass wall of the pod and stared inside at River's freshly printed body. She looked up at him, smiled and said, "I love you."
Published on Sep 11, 2012
by Lavie Tidhar
They caught up with him at last on the edge of Soi Cowboy. He'd been running for some time: a doll-repair shop in Nong Khai on the Mekong river, a stint in Vientiane--he'd dumped his last ID, changed his node in a back-street warez lab in Kunming and fled, fled across Laos and into Thailand, into Issan: where nothing ever happened, and one could--almost--disappear. They came for him nevertheless, as he knew they would, and he fled again, at last trying to hide himself in Bangkok, the city masking him, the hum of its endless electronics, wireless signals, radio and telephone and optics, cables and satellites all acting to hide one single human in that vast digital space--but they found him again and he had to run.
Published on Apr 22, 2011
by Dawn Vogel
We decant another batch of clones from the goop. Their route takes them from the cloning chambers through showers, then to uniforms, weaponry, and out to the front. And then the process starts again. We've been doing this long enough that few of us remember how the war started or why we're fighting. We continue to make clones because it keeps us and our loved ones away from the front. There's not enough time to get to know a clone. They never become a loved one. R&D continually works on improvements. Faster, stronger, more resilient clones will turn the war in our favor. Since we never get to know the clones, we don't see any difference. They all come out of the goop naked and blank. They all return to goop just as blank. Today, men in suits hover nearby. They want to see the next batch. It's odd but not unheard of for a mid-day modification. We shrug and start the decanting process. This batch is different. They don't match the previous clones. They look... wrong. We frantically check the specs we received. The suits shake hands and clap each other's backs. "Turning the tide," they say. "Perfect replicas make ideal infiltrators. They'll never see it coming." We get a faint "well done" before they depart for uniforms, which also have mods today. The clones move on to the showers. And we start another batch.
Published on Jan 27, 2022
by KT Wagner
Grandma's glow-in-the-dark geraniums were harmless and kind of cute. However, the family nominated me to speak to her after she cloned her dead cat, Gerald, three times. Grandma raised me after my parents were killed in a car crash, and I'd always been her favorite grandchild. Except for the foil over the basement windows, her white clapboard farmhouse was straight out of my foggy childhood memories. I half-expected Grandma to greet me on the porch, a plate of chocolate chip cookies in one hand and a pitcher of lemonade in the other. Of course, Grandma never baked a cookie in her life, and she preferred test tubes and centrifuges to rolling pins and flour sifters.
Published on Feb 7, 2017
by A.C. Wise
Here is Doll at five years old. She's sitting rigid and silent in the closet, hoping Henry and Jakey will forget she's there. They're fighting about her. The gap between the doorframe and the door lets in a sliver of light that bisects her eye. Through the gap, she can see Henry in profile. Doll can't see Jakey, she only hears him, yelling at his father.
Published on Jul 15, 2011
by jez patterson
Nyah found the news so shocking she stopped walking. Luisa took several more steps without her until she noticed she was walking alone. "Something wrong?" Luisa asked.
Published on Dec 28, 2017