THE LOST RACE

by Robert E. Howard. Originally Published in Weird Tales #9, January 1927. Cororuc saves a wolf from a panther but is captured and held prisoner by the intended victim's clan! Cororuc glanced about him and hastened his pace. He was no coward, but he did not like the place. Tall trees rose all about, their sullen branches shutting out the sunlight. The dim trail led in and out among them, sometimes skirting the edge of a ravine, where Cororuc could gaze down at the treetops beneath. Occasionally, through a rift in the forest, he could see away to the forbidding hills that hinted of the ranges Continue reading

THE VAMPIRE MAID

by Hume Nisbet. Originally Published in Stories Weird and Wonderful, 1900. Searching for the meaning of life, has he finally found it in the pale raven-haired temptress? It was the exact kind of abode that I had been looking after for weeks, for I was in that condition of mind when absolute renunciation of society was a necessity. I had become diffident of myself, and wearied of my kind. A strange unrest was in my blood; a barren dearth in my brains. Familiar objects and faces had grown distasteful to me. I wanted to be alone. This is the mood which comes upon every sensitive and artistic Continue reading

THEY'RE MADE OUT OF MEAT

by Terry Bisson . from Omni, April 1991. It's wise to leave meat alone, unless you don't mind a lingering aftertaste! "They're made out of meat." "Meat?" "Meat. They're made out of meat." "Meat?" "There's no doubt about it. We picked up several from different parts of the planet, took them aboard our recon vessels, and probed them all the way through. They're completely meat." "That's impossible. What about the radio signals? The messages to the stars?" "They use the radio waves to talk, but the signals don't come from them. The signals come from machines." "So who made the machines? That's Continue reading

THE NEW ATLANTIS

by Francis Bacon. Originally published in 1626. Sea voyagers find a strange new land, but is it really new?    WE sailed from Peru, where we had continued by the space of one whole year, for China and Japan, by the South Sea, taking with us victuals for twelve months; and had good winds from the east, though soft and weak, for five months' space and more. But then the wind came about, and settled in the west for many days, so as we could make little or no way, and were sometimes in purpose to turn back. But then again there arose strong and great winds from the south, with a point east; Continue reading

PROTECTION

by Robert Sheckley . from Galaxy, April 1956. The Derg offered him protection from all future accidents, but at what cost? There'll be an airplane crash in Burma next week, but it shouldn't affect me here in New York. And the feegs certainly can't harm me. Not with all my closet doors closed. No, the big problem is lesnerizing. I must not lesnerize. Absolutely not. As you can imagine, that hampers me. And to top it all, I think I'm catching a really nasty cold. The whole thing started on the evening of November seventh. I was walking down Broadway on my way to Baker's Cafeteria. On my lips Continue reading

QUICK ON THE DRAW!

by James D. Lucey. Originally Published in The American Magazine, 1955. Doc Stanton is called upon to save the life of a gunfighter intent on killing his best friend! WALTERS, the barman at The Pride, stood before the doctor, his hand on his gun. "Come along, Doc!" he said. " Some yellow-livered citizen sneaked into The Pride last night an' switched the whiskey in Luke Guyer's special bar bottle with the stuff in my knockout bottle. Three drinks out of that bottle would kill anybody. Luke got about five in him before he hit the floor." Dr. Stanton nodded and limped over to a cupboard. Robert Continue reading

EARTHMEN BEARING GIFTS

by Frederic Brown. Originally Published in Galaxy Magazine, June 1960. Mars had gifts to offer and Earth had much in return if delivery could be arranged! DHAR Ry sat alone in his room, meditating. From outside the door he caught a thought wave equivalent to a knock, and, glancing at the door, he willed it to slide open. It opened. “Enter, my friend,” he said. He could have projected the idea telepathically; but with only two persons present, speech was more polite. Ejon Khee entered. “You are up late tonight, my leader,” he said. “Yes, Khee. Within an hour the Earth rocket is due Continue reading

WHO GOES THERE?

by John W. Campbell. from Astounding, August 1938. Chapter 1 The place stank. A queer, mingled stench that only the ice buried cabins of an Antarctic camp know, compounded of reeking human sweat, and the heavy, fish oil stench of melted seal blubber. An overtone of liniment combated the musty smell of sweat-and-snow-drenched furs. The acrid odor of burnt cooking fat, and the animal, not-unpleasant smell of dogs, diluted by time, hung in the air. Lingering odors of machine oil contrasted sharply with the taint of harness dressing and leather. Yet, somehow, through all that reek of human beings Continue reading

TRANSITORY ISLAND

by Richard Wilson. From Cosmos, Volume 1, Number 2, May 1941. When three men are alone on a barren island in the middle of nowhere, how can two of them disappear without a trace? DOUG PELTON CHUCKED a valueless penny into the Pacific and laughed grimly. He was remembering a questionnaire he had answered ten years ago in college. "What three objects or persons would you like to have along if you were stranded on a desert island?" He had listed: "Mary Astor, the complete works of Shakespeare, and a shaving kit." Well, here he was on a desert island, but without Miss Astor, with nothing to read Continue reading