The Margin Alien

Don’t spend too much time looking around, I told myself. Just find Andy, fix the harness, and come on back.

My brother had said the place was amazing and the people were great and that he couldn’t wait to take us there, once he was sure it would be safe.

But I couldn’t let that dazzle me. Especially since a small part of me wondered if he’d somehow gotten enthralled into staying longer than he’d intended. Maybe he’d lost track of time. I glanced over at the kids, who stood thirty feet away. Andy didn’t allow himself to lose track of time anymore, unless someone else was taking care of the kids. And the state of his bedroom, his garage…

Remember why you’re going there.

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Titan Matter

“What’s the secret ingredient?”



Castor smiled as his memory moved through the days before it all went horribly wrong for a few, even as hope remained for everyone else. A few moments before, he had been sitting stiffly on his lab stool hunched over a microscope. But the alarm on his phone had sounded, a jaunty jazz number that reminded him of happier days.

The secret ingredient in the biomaterial that had been used to treat, to cure, to advance the five volunteers lying in one of the most advanced burn wards in the world, was neither love nor magic. But anyone might have thought so, the way the stuff brought those folks back to life.

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“Refill, sir?”

I looked up at the server lazily and gave a weak nod. She filled my water glass and I watched as the gentle gurgling of water being poured into water tinged the air with a soft pink glow.

I was tired. My eyelids felt heavy and they burned a little. I hadn’t slept well again. I wanted nothing more than to lie down. But I couldn’t sleep and maybe wouldn’t unless I started making progress, real progress, in making sense of my senses.

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