New answers tagged

-1

I've always pictured the aliens (somewhat) described in "Goodbye Ilha!" as 'triskelions" or three-armed starfish, since mention is made of three limbs or probes only. I imagined they moved by somersaulting (which would make me dizzy but they're not human) or "tip-probing" one in front of the other. They also appear to have some sort of radial symmetry since ...


8

This looks like "Murder Will In" by Frank Herbert. The being you refer to was actually a symbiotic pair sentience, whose two members are identified by "Tegas" and "Bacit". You can find some pages of that in Google Books' "The Collected Stories of Frank Herbert". This is the section where the "invaded" being, Joe Carmichael, that Tegas/Bacit has just ...


16

This sounds like "Riding the White Bull" (2004) by Caitlín R. Kiernan. If you read it in a hardcover anthology it might have been Two Worlds and In Between: The Best of Caitlín R. Kiernan (2011). (I wonder if she's a Sisters of Mercy fan?) Dietrich (Deet) Paine works as a freelance scrubber for the Agency, hunting down and killing (scrubbing) infected ...


5

This is "The Blink of a Wizard's Eye" by Joel Rosenberg, published in Dragon #71. (I previously identified it here.) Here is the information about wizards' powers getting greater with distance (and one of them pulling the rocks being pulled down from space, although the target is not actually the other wizard): One of the peasants shouted, pointing ...


1

Could it be The House on the Strand by Daphne du Maurier? The setting for the story is an ancient Cornish house called Kilmarth, which is based on the house the author had recently bought, following the death of her husband.[5] The narrator, Dick Young, has given up his job and been offered the use of Kilmarth by an old university friend, Magnus Lane, a ...


6

As one of the commentators suggested, this sounds like "There is a crooked man", a novella by Jack Wodhams, first published in 1967. It deals with a number of grotesque accidents occuring with a teleportation system, including Mr Frederic Traff: Mr. Frederic Traff looked down at himself and choked back a cry of dismay. He had been incorrectly ...


16

"The Painters Are Coming Today", a short story by Steve Rasnic Tem. You may have read it in the 1984 anthology 100 Great Fantasy Short Short Stories edited by Isaac Asimov, Terry Carr, and Martin H. Greenberg. Out of the corner of his eye Walter could see one of the painters swiping at the side of the house with a paintbrush. "Hey you! Just a darn . . ." ...


12

There is a line like this in Legends from the End of Time by Michael Moorcock. My Lady Charlotina's Ball must have been at least a mile in circumference, set against the soft tones of a summer twilight, red-gold and transparent so that, as one approached, the guests who had already arrived could be seen standing upon the inner wall, clad in creations ...


15

Possibly Desertion by Clifford D. Simak? It pre-dated the similar Poul Anderson "Call Me Joe" and I think matches a little closer to your description". Years ago, in the 90's, Written in 1944 I read a Sci-Fi story in an airline mag. It is a short story vs. Call Me Joe which is a novelettte so better fits what might be in an airline mag. It is ...


34

Crying Willow by Edward Rager. I read it in Asimov's 100 Great Science Fiction Short Short Stories. If this is the story your memory isn't quite correct. Plants communicate their distress to each other, and the grapevine detector is used to catch someone who is torturing a plant. No humans were harmed in the making of this short story. The tree being ...


1

The story of Benjamin Button comes to mind, but does not have the 'cat and mouse" elements you mention. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Curious_Case_of_Benjamin_Button_(film) (Mods may wish to move this to a comment)


10

Could this be "Twilight of the Gods" by John C. Wright? This was published in 2009 in a collection called "Federations" edited by John Joseph Adams. I have not read it myself, but according to an interview with the author: The story springs from two roots. First, this is my attempt to tell the story of Wagner’s Ring of the Nibelungs in space, complete ...


1

Partial match to Northworld by David Drake, in which the eponymous planet has lost its all-powerful leader and is missing from the "Consensus". A human police officer is recruited by the non-human controllers of the Consensus to find out what happened. The officer is sent to the world where he finds a blending of mental abilities that enable him to move ...


7

This sounds a lot likeThe Dueling Machine by Ben Bova. Points that match: The story begins in media res with as the viewpoint character fights a duel on a frozen planet. They combatants are wearing something between a power suit and a single-person armoured vehicle; visibility is almost zero and radar range is short. The viewpoint character knows what ...


0

This is Ben Bova's The Dueling Machine.


13

"The Dueling Machine" by Ben Bova and Myron R. Lewis. Google books cover blurb: At first, the dueling machine seemed like a benign or even a helpful invention, allowing people to blow off steam and solve conflicts in a virtual reality-like environment. But before long, an evil tyrant discovers a way to use the device to inflict real and lasting harm on ...


4

"Exile", a short story by Edmond Hamilton, also the answer to this question; first published in Super Science Stories, May 1943, available at the Internet Archive. You might have read it in the paperback anthology The Great Science Fiction Stories Volume 5, 1943 or the hardcover Isaac Asimov Presents The Golden Years of Science Fiction: Third Series, both ...


1

I'm pretty sure you're talking about "Ever After," a short story in Susan Palwick's book The Fate of Mice.


30

This description sounds like James Tiptree, Jr. (Alice Sheldon)'s 1981 novella "With Delicate Mad Hands", although lacking some major details. The protagonist of the story is a young, unattractive orphan who is "an expert at being unloved". Since childhood she has heard a "Voice" that she believes comes from space, telling her to "Come". She works hard to ...


4

This sounds like the "Lost Legion" by S.M. Stirling first published in the anthology, Bolos: Honor of the Regiment, Baen Books, 1993. The main protagonist is Lieutenant Bethany Martins. In this story, Bethany's unit has to traverse a Latin American jungle countryside harboring enemy guerillas. The unit's main armored vehicle is an intelligent tank, the ...


1

Essentially, Potterley would be blackmailing Foster with having already started into forbidden activity. While research into neutrinics and the chronoscope is not apparently illegal, such research is seen as frivolous and there is an unspoken threat that a researcher, and thereby the university he works for, would have all research funding cut off if they ...


10

Arnold Potterley's stated reason for wanting to view the past was that he was trying to exonerate the Carthaginians of child sacrifice by tossing the children into the flames, with this being a subconscious way of similarly exonerating himself of the death of his daughter. Foster paced the floor. Somehow, this explained the reason for Potterley's rabid, ...


12

This looks like another request to find Sheena 5 by Stephen Baxter. According to Wikipedia it was first published in Analog in 2000, and has been republished a number of times, including the 2001 Best Sci-Fi anthology in the link. As mentioned in the comment above, it's also been incorporated with a few changes into Manifold: Time. In both iterations ...


7

"Shipping Clerk" by William Morrison. Short story originally published in the June 1952 issue of Galaxy Science Fiction. A down-and-out and very hungry man finds a "nut" on the street, practically breaks a tooth biting down on it, and accidentally swallows it. He picked up the nut, banged it futilely against the ground, and then looked around for a rock ...


25

This is John W. Campbell, Jr.'s "The Brain Stealers of Mars" (1936) Part of the problem is that the Martians are telepathic, so the astronauts can't use things they know to detect the Martians. The astronauts are in a mixed group of duplicates of themselves; Penton uses Blake's sneezing to kill all the fake Blakes. Blake gets on their ship and fills it ...


9

I'm pretty sure about this one. I believe it is "Piccadilly Circus" by Chris Beckett, originally published in Interzone magazine May-June 2005 and later in The Year’s Best Science Fiction, 23rd Annual Collection, which the author has kindly put online here. The story is a sequel to "The Perimeter" (online here). In the stories the inhabitants of the virtual ...


10

"The Lifecycle of Software Objects" is a novella by Ted Chiang that was published in 2010, so just within the date-window that you give. The story is about "digients" (short for "digital entities"), which are artificial intelligences that run in a digital world, created for entertainment purposes. The digients start off childlike, and develop intelligence ...


5

This sounds like "Mixed Up", a short story by the Ukrainian sci-fi writer Vladimir Savchenko. I read it in a compilation of Soviet science fiction short stories called Red Star Tales. A synopsis is available here: When an alien race beamed their personalities across space to Earth, mankind learned the secret of interstellar travel; not everyone, ...


9

This could potentially be "Alien Earth" (1949) by Edmond Hamilton. I found it by Googling Short story drug people live as slow as trees which turned up this [story-identification] question. The answer there has some relevant quotes but the top one seems most relevant: Farris lifted Berreau. The man's body was rigid, muscles locked in an effort no less ...


5

This is probably "Small World" (1957) by William F. Nolan, which you may have read under one of the variant titles "The Small World of Lewis Stillman" or "The Underdweller". Under the latter title it was collected in his mid-1970s collections Alien Horizons (US) or Wonderworlds (UK). The story is much as you describe; the protagonist, Lewis Stillman, is ...


17

This seems like The Moon Moth by Jack Vance, a short story of his originally published in Galaxy Science Fiction (Aug 1961 edition). The premise is that a hapless Earth Consul to the planet Sirene (Edwer Thissell), is stuggling to adjust to the planet's culture. On Sirene, all inhabitants (including the few Earthmen that have settled there) communicate ...


8

"Achilles' Heel", a short story by Christopher Anvil, first published in Astounding Science Fiction, February 1958, available at the Internet Archive. If you were in the UK you may have seen it in the British edition, Astounding Science Fiction, May 1958 (UK), also available at the Internet Archive. It was reprinted in Christopher Anvil's 2006 collection The ...


0

As was mentioned offhand in a deleted answer, one of the stories at 70s Young Adult science fiction short story collection available in schools fits your description as per this site's summary. The Music of Minox (Howard Goldsmith) finds an interplanetary mining camp attacked by aliens monsters resembling crystalline porcupines that emit harp-like sounds. ...


4

This is a dupe of Old story about mysterious creatures at the bottom of a well that have a taste for "live turkey" (i.e. human flesh)?, which has the answer of "Hey You, Down There" by Harold Rolseth. A farmer digs a new well and discovers some sort of civilization of 'monsters'. The farmer and his wife/daughter feed the 'monsters' by ...


3

I found this by looking through every Analog cover until I saw this one: I instantly recognized it; that gave me an author, J. Brian Clarke, and a story title: "Intent of Mercy". ISFDb tells us that every story in Clarke's The Expediter series was published in Analog between 1984 and 1989. Digging up my old Analogs, I found that my "linked short stories" ...


5

I've seen this as a short video form, Welcome to Life, by Tom Scott. You can watch it on Youtube.


7

Possibly "The Story of a Brain" by Arnold Zuboff? The story included a series of physical systems, of increasing complexity, none of which would be described as "conscious" by most people, but which (the author implies) must be conscious if computationalism is true. The story talks about a "spread-brain" project. Initially a man with "a horrible rot was ...


8

The Sea Change by Arthur Jean Cox looks to be possibility. I found an excerpt of the story in The Best from Fantasy and Science Fiction Seventeenth Series in Google Books searching for skeleton "pearls that were his eyes" (the third search result). natsscifiguide.com describes it as: A man drowns at sea, but is resurrected in an underwater “hive.”


10

It's obviously A letter from the Clearys by Connie Willis. From the story's wikipage: "A Letter from the Clearys" starts with a young teenage girl and her dog making their way home through the countryside after a visit to the town's post office. (...) This ordinary cheerful letter upsets the family greatly and the protagonist states that this is not her ...


35

I wonder if this is "The Masters" collected in Ursula Le Guin's The Wind's Twelve Quarters? There are no "dark numbers", but there are "black numbers" (i.e. numbers represented using Arabic numerals) and zero is explicitly one of them. The society they live in uses numbers of course, but they are Roman numerals, and are hobbled by a lack of zero, negative ...


9

This is "Proof" by Hal Clement (1942, Astounding). You can read it (with some OCR quirks) here. You can find it in The Great SF Stories IV, although I found it in Antologia Scolastica, an Italian anthology. All the elements you cite match, except for solar flares being ship launches. They do note that our converters take so much as to lower the solar ...


5

I found it. It was called Mara's Shadow by Darci Stone in the Writers of the Future Volume 34 anthology. The science behind the story forms around a group of scientists working on solving an unknown disease. The facts don’t seem to add correctly with everything they know. As more and more people contract symptoms, it becomes evident that the disease is ...


11

Short story about a Martian invasion . . . "The Martian Shop", a novelette by Howard Fast, better known for his historical novels such as Spartacus; first published in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, November 1959, available at the Internet Archive. Does any of these covers look familiar? . . . that starts with a mysterious set of stores in ...


15

This sounds like it could be one of Philip K. Dick's stories. He re-used themes quite often and it can be hard to keep track. The idea of adults playing with dolls in complex set ups is central to The Days of Perky Pat. Unusually, I was able to lay my hands on my copy pretty easily. The adults in the story are supported by air drops of supplies after ...


6

"Like a Bird, Like a Fish", a short story by H. B. Hickey, first published in Worlds Beyond, February 1951, available at the Internet Archive; reprinted in the anthology Worlds of Tomorrow edited by August Derleth. Plot summary from www.storypilot.com: When a strange ship crashes in Guadalajara, the villagers call Father Vincent. When the priest realizes ...


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