Johannes Punkt’s Flaskpost

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Tag: sci-fi

Home/Sick

Alien psychologists seeing diseases that just aren’t there in your precious human mind. They like you. In your head, one terrapsychologist has decided, there is the feeling of belonging anywhere. The yearning for a specific location, it is so strange and causing you so much pain. You are not, you need not long for Earth, they tell you, you will be okay without it.

“I already have a word for it,” you tell them. “Homesickness. But it’s no sickness.”

There is an expression on her face that you cannot read. Maybe it’s a smile. “And it is not your home.”

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The Big Crunch

As the universe shrinks, the sky lights up, and night is erased by the cold light from dead stars far away. All our probes and lonely radio transmissions start bouncing back on us, faster and faster in accordance with the speed of the shrinking. Everybody wears a wide-brimmed hat and dark shades. Our crops die, our insects too, and then there is too much death to enumerate properly. Our own sun seems unaware of it all, shining on like ever before. Our cities are blanched out, we flee underground, and we’re just waiting for the crumbling sound of everything dying.

They Uploaded her Consciousness to the Machines

They uploaded her consciousness to the machines and treated her there for a few hours. The consciousness felt it as years and years.

Each time an error occurred, they rewound the digital brain a little. Sometimes, they detected mistakes made many months ago, and months of progress had to be deleted.

Finally, they claimed this facsimile cured. There is no way to download consciousnesses, only uploads. It would take around two years realtime to cure her with 87% certainty, as long as they do not deviate from the schedule, as long as they never let her glance at the ending.

A Host with No Guests

Jannu knew the exact spot the visitors would choose. It was in the water. Were the visitors aquatic? He found an island nearby and oared his way out to it, setting up a massive welcoming buffet of all the different kinds of foods he could find. He stayed on the island for three days, gradually thinning the once-impressive buffet. Sometimes he stared at his feet.

On the other side of the world, just a kilometre away from the place Jannu stared at when he stared at his feet, the visitors wondered why nobody came to greet them, then they left.

Plots You Can Have: Low-Budget Indie Films Edition

Plots You Can Have is an ongoing series of posts where I suggest storylines for stories that came out of my head but that I have given up for adoption. If any of these strike your fancy, please take them! And if you do write anything from this I would love to read it. For more posts, see: tag/plots-you-can-have

This Plots You Can Have is about things I imagine would make good low-budget indie films.

A SICK WORLD

“You have dreamt up a sick world.” (Variations on it are repeated throughout the movie like arc words.)

A person (who is really some form of deity but has repressed it) believes ze is experiencing psychosis and gets worried about it. First scene is where the deity explains to a psychoanalyst – the best in the field – that ze wants the psychoanalyst to follow hir around for a whole year and then come to a conclusion. The therapist protests, of course, but the deity presents hir with a lot of money, up-front, and gives hir a month to finish hir business before ze will come to pick hir up. When the money does not convince the therapist, the deity offers salvation instead.

It transpires that the deity is working as a world-class motivational speaker. The month passes quite quickly; the psychoanalyst lies to hir patients a bit and apologizes profusely but can’t say no to the deity’s offer. They travel the world a bit and things seem to be really quite bad wherever the deity goes. The psychoanalyst starts questioning hir own sanity, and at a conference for downtrodden psychopaths in business-clothes, ze decides the deity is the one who is making things bad. Now ze just needs to prove it.
Read the rest of this entry »

Voyage

“Find life.”

You were fitted with a chelonian, deliberate kind of intelligence, and all the cameras in the world. You left our system as a living thing; you taught us all we know about extrasolar space. And you fulfilled your mission; you found life.

You aimed your thruster; you set your course.

And you degraded. Micrometeors, particles of dust, stray gamma bursts, bugs that turned up after hundreds of years, data inconsistencies. So you turned into just another inert clump of metal, gathering ice on your journey to this other world. They did not see you coming.

And you crashed.

I Solve Your Fictional Problems with FTL-Drives

The post on Time Travel was a success! On account of how everybody loves technobabble, I will strive to make solving your fictional problems a regular occurence. Today’s letter comes from one @_TK_O (Ms. Osborne), who writes

Dear Mr Punkt,

My starship is not peppy enough, and I’m struggling to get it to go faster than light. However, all the fancy spaceships my friends own seem to be able to manage it! Tell me, how can I win the next big drag race in the Alpha Quadrant?

Sincerely,

Ms. Osborne, T. Read the rest of this entry »

2012 NaNoWriMo Excerpt #3

Last one of these I’m posting before I get anywhere with editing this novella into shape. I haven’t even got to write the really cool scenes yet! (The really cool scenes are some NGE/Michael Bay stuff. Explaining it here would ruin the explositude.)

Previous excerpts can be found here: /2012/11/12/nanowrimo-excerpt-1/ and here: /2013/01/13/2012-nanowrimo-excerpt-2/

This snippet takes place between excerpt 2 and 1. As usual, comments appreciated.

[Content Warning: sex]

~

She closed the door and exhaled and lay down on the floor. Immediately, Ikkje appeared from the doorway from the kitchen and sat down next to her. He held her hand. He wore an apron and smelled like cinnamon.

“Do you love me?” Rovy asked.

Ikkje Pouncer appeared to think for a little while. The house was modest, she thought. Like most of Ikkje’s kind, the house was just at the edge of the city, but Rovy was okay with this. “I think I do. I don’t think anything has changed. What’s wrong?”

He spent most of his days out in the emptiness, unrecorded, hunting and gathering. Rovy shook her head. “Long day, is all. Have you heard of the falling elites?”

“Elites?”

“The bewinged men and women falling from the sky, love.”

“Is that where the elites are?”

“Well, a bunch of them fell and something happened to the Information Market. Hardly any Buskers there, but many buyers. Don’t know what to make of it. Is dinner done soon?”

“It is. I gathered a lot of mushrooms and potatoes, today.” He smiled.

She kissed him. “You know, most hunter-gatherers also do the hunting business. I don’t think I’ve ever seen you bring home a phant of any kind.”

“These potatoes were totally a struggle, I swear.”

She stared at the little information ball that had rolled out of her pockets.

She kissed her husband again, “hey, do you really love me?” Read the rest of this entry »

I Solve Your Fictional Problems about Time Travel

Fictional people often come to me with their Problems. They are very distressed until I calmly technobabble at them until it all seems to make sense. So, I thought I should offer my services to the public. Are you a fictional person? Do you have a problem? Email me at johannes.punkt at gmail dot com and pose your problem and I will try to explain it away.

Now, without further ado, today’s problem is about time travel. The question was illustrated in the form of a picture of a DeLorean several thousand miles into space, with Earth in the background, and a pithy explanation that the Earth moves in space.

Q: How come time machines also seem to be space machines and always know exactly where to go???

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NaNoWriMo Excerpt #1

I am losing interest in telling this story well but there should be salvageable things after the month is over and writing can return to a more reasonable pace.

~

The Information Market seemed to breathe, or have a pulse. But it was nothing but a layer-3 suborganism and its ebb and flow was no more than that of the ocean.

Its pulse quickened, though. Garish stepped out onto a podium while three or four ghosts of him moved around on the floor like it was some sort of dance. His suits were black and grey now, his hat shorter and flatter. One of his ghosts stopped dead in front of a short hunchback.

“Why hello there, gorgeous,” he said though she hid her face. “How do you feel about a transaction?”

Her hunch seemed to twitch and she turned away. Garish stretched out his cane to poke her on the back with it but she turned around and ripped it from his grip. “What do you want?” There was a veil over her face now.

“How about, I hand you this –” he held up a small information ball like the one he’d given to Rovy a few hours earlier – “which is an extensive guide to dieting and taking care of one’s body. All I want for exchange is a little personal information from you.”

“I’m not telling you anything and I don’t need that.” Her voice was like gravel and grit.  Read the rest of this entry »