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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 Vortex

Aniket Sanyal is an Indian born writer currently living somewhere in the center of New Jersey. When not debating the existence of simulated realities, the merits of literary vs. genre fiction, or arguing about something in general, Aniket can be found at his desk writing poetry and short fiction. His poetry has previously appeared online in Bewildering Stories.

When the vortex comes, you will be asleep. You will not even be dreaming of your name.
When the vortex arrives you will be in a different land. It will not occur to you whether your horizons are completely or totally aligned.
When the vortex lands, you will be a particle of the greatest insignificance.
But for now...
None of this has happened. There is no such thing as the vortex. We are safely enmeshed within the reality brought upon our heads by drunken forefathers. You are resting easy or perhaps not resting at all. You are beautiful and men gaze upon your gleaming skin when you dare them with your eyes.
Later on perhaps...
You may rise and do things that are done in the morning. You may gaze out into the infinite reaches of the galaxy and wonder where your craft will be taking you. You may contemplate the existence of a particular item of flora as opposed to an analogous item of fauna and you may impress yourself with all the books you have read. But even in these moments, you know you will not survive it.
Because, as you must already know, the vortex is everything.
It is everything you have ever known and ever will come to know. The vortex sits within every cortex, rides the charge of every synapse and feeds upon the electricity of every movement. It is the notches in your spine and dirt between your teeth. You are not powerless before it. You are nothing. It is the power and you are the vortex.
How was your day?
You must be tired. Heavy with this burden of knowledge, a long day at the academy, interstellar traffic jams, alien races jostling for galactic priority and you are the only one who truly knows just what the hell is going on. Do not fear, we have all been in your position before. Relax. Take a deep breath, then another and then, out of view of the holy book, pour yourself a drink, maybe two. Sit down and sink into your comfort. Close your eyes.
Fall asleep.
The vortex is waiting.
The End
This story was first published on Thursday, March 12th, 2015
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