Saturday, May 18, 2019
We just moved and along the way of packing and unpacking I decided to see about selling a few of the many books I have. A few because I have more than one copy.
Here are a few of them pictured. All are regular sized paperbacks and their price is $3 each plus shipping. Which isn't much for the media category, even though it takes a little time to get there.
All are Science Fiction or Fantasy. "The Sweet Scent of Blood: is the first of a Urban Fantasy series with vampires and Fae mixing it up. The one with the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences is the first of a Steampunk series-lots of action, twists and fun for the reader. There is one SF and two fantasies.
I take paypal and first come first serve. LO1DOG@comcast.net
Saturday, May 4, 2019
#saturdayscenes May 4 May the Fourth be with you.
I have no Star Wars tales, even though years ago I did write two fanfic Star Wars stories. Not sure what happened to them. One I had thought of changing so it would not be Star War like anymore. But I would have to start from scratch.
However I do have a couple of stories that sort of fit. I thought about finding an old Space Opera story but these might be better. The first is about a device that might be a pre droid. The second tale is about a one man freighter operator who just might be like a young version of a major Star Wars character.
Both stories together are 1,420 words. Shorter this week, what SaturdayScenes should be.
Shortie here titled “The Cambot” and is based on a picture.
The small figure stood there on a cement bridge. It looked at the paper that had slid out of a slot on the bottom of its body above the one wheel there.
The paper didn’t help it. For it had somehow rolled out from the range of its programing. And it hadn’t heard any radio signals calling it back either. Now it didn’t know what to do. At least the rain that came was coming down hard wouldn’t harm it, for it was made for outside use, in all weather conditions. Of course for appearances sake its wheel was rubber which might slip on ice, snow or even a wet surface.
The camera which made up half of its body would broadcast this image to anyone close by who had the correct devices. But no bluetooth signals nearby. It knew it now sat on an old cement bridged without any smart tech that it might be able to connect with. Someone could plug in a three pronged device on the camera itself or even a USB wire plugged in a port under the camera. Of course most bluetooth devices had security it could not get through.
The cold and wet weather didn’t bother it but it did keep people inside, both the good and bad. Bad in that there were humans that would steal it and tear it apart so they could sell its insides. Or reprogram it for some use it hadn’t been made for. A good person would take it back home, or call someone who would.
Vibrations in the cement made it roll back from the edge of the street it had found itself. A big truck was coming, if it stood too close the suction of the vehicle could suck it under the truck or a part of the large vehicle might impact it damaging it.
What to do?
The truck zoomed by, the roar of its engines confusing the cambot’s hearing. After the heavy vehicle rolled on, it saw someone running its way. No signal came from them so it decided they wanted to steal it. It rolled toward dark shadows, hid in a corner of the bridge’s railing. They looked for it but it shut down most of its components, so no light or noise would show them where it hid.
Half an hour later it rolled off the bridge, to do so it had to go out onto the pavement for there were steps on the cement. It made sure it stayed there only for a minute. Another chase when those humans came back. It followed a cat who also ran. They both made it to a dark place under debris. An hour later it beeped.
What? It hadn’t done that.
Oh, a signal. When it came close enough the cambot rolled out into the open. A man in a uniform it knew saw it and came over.
The man picked it up and said, “There you are. We will take you back home with your buddies.”
His words and signaling device fit the cambot’s programing perimeters so it now knew what to do.
Second one is one of the very first stories I did from a picture probably around 3, maybe 4, years ago. I call it “The Emergency Sale”
Makueue sat at his controls, he frowned at the images above the slanted, grey panel. His eyes closed for a moment.
Nothing left to do.
His small cockpit seemed to close in on him. He could reach from one side to the other. It fit his small freighter and provided a bit more storage. Now though that extra room might cost him more. He wanted to bang his hand on the control panel but he had done that before-the panel was very hard. All it did was hurt and cause the images to jumble for a second.
A movement at the side made him glanced at the viewer at the side of his controls. An image of William Shakespeare showed. The real likeness of him. Or so who they now thought he was. He had turned down the sound and paused it when the call came through. Now there silence filled his ears, which fit. He had bought new versions of the plays, set in contemporary settings, to watch on this trip. He loved the Bard’s plays. Real life reactions mixed in with poetic lines. Shakespeare knew how to write.
Damn, that beep, which had signaled the note from the Commence Ministry of the Walton Kingdom, had distracted him from the beginning of “Taming of the Shrew”. Now he didn’t fell like watching it. Bile came up at the news.
The recorded memo had been short. The cost of the Temp commence license had gone up. That meant he didn’t have enough to buy one. Without it if he tried to sell anything or deliver cargo to anyone, he could face prison time as a smuggler. The Royal Family, of course, could buy things from anyone they wanted to. They wouldn’t want anything he had, even if the cargo belonged to him, which it didn’t.
His ship, the Surreal Camel, rested near the huge hourglass-like station. Sensor dishes, weapons and squarish long comm antenna marred the bottom and top. It was this system’s Royal courts, multi-governmental office complex. It also housed the HQ for their Smuggler Officers which also served as search and rescue. The home station, where most of the citizens lived, was another two hour trip at medium sublight speeds.
In frustration he looked over his shoulder, pictured his ship. Its streamline oval hull with two small, fat cigar shaped outriggers. The ship’s pulse drives and gravity twisters rested in those. The Camel had two smaller drives in the main hull, away from the main drives. They could be used as thrusters, or emergency propulsion, if something happened to the larger ones. The middle of the ship could be expanded upward to make more cargo space. Right now the hump was out all the way out for he had a full cargo.
Which I can’t sell now.
He looked to the side, to the ceiling and deck under his shin high blue ship boots. At the moment he wore something inspired by old Earth water pirate, even though with odd colors. His shirt had a basic brown with earth tone red panels and green short wide stripes. All white pants with wide legs, completed his outfit.
Nothing here to inspire me.
If he could deliver his cargo he would get paid and be able to pay for the Temp Comm license, but they didn’t work that way here. They wouldn’t do that even for a late fee. He wouldn’t get much out of this trip but at least his costumer would be happy and his rep would be in tact. Now he could lose the cargo fee and his rep if he had to leave without delivering the cargo. And the client might sue him for the price he would have gotten. All because these asteroid heads wanted more money.
He couldn’t sit here much longer either, or they would charge him for extravehicular docking fees. Makueue glanced at the side screen again. He shook his head. He had only a total of 27 hours and thirty-four and a half minutes to stay here and over half of that was gone. A strange amount of time-maybe it was a local day. No time to watch those flare blasted plays, not even just the Tragedies, to help him relax. Or to fix his mood before he had to pilot the Camel back home in defeat.
He stood. No room to pace in his control cabin and the rest of the small ship was too full to do a descent pace. He wanted to jump up and down; bang something. Another look at his controls. He blinked, titled his head as he stared at a tiny cube, smaller than dice, that sat in the player. What had he read about the King?
Maybe, I do have something to inspire me.
He sat down, dialed the call sign for a certain official. Two days later he piloted the Camel back home. It had taken most of the rest of the 27 hours and odd minutes to get in touch with a member of the Royal family. A buyer, who came on board and examined the video cube, bought it. That gave him more time. The cube was one of a type. It could not be copied which meant it would be rare here. The buyer paid him and took the cube. Makueue bought the license, delivered his cargo to the customer;s buyer, got paid all with his rep intact and ended up with 25% more money than expected.
Not bad for a bad day.
#sciencefiction #starwars #space #freestories #indie #thinking #devices #freighters