Posts Tagged ‘science’

PseudoPod 484: Flash On The Borderlands XXXI: WEIRD SCIENCE HORROR!

Show Notes

Preorder John C Foster’s upcoming novel at DoNotSpeakHisName.com

Theremin courtesy of Freesound and Thereminvox.


Unspeakable Horrors From Outer Space Paralyze The Living And Resurrect The Dead!


The Masters

by Theodore Cogswell

narrated by John Bell


“So heavy!” groaned the last earth-man to himself as he laboriously pried up a heavy flagstone with the butt of an old halberd. “So very, very, heavy.”

As the flat rock finally toppled over, he bent down, with all the speed his complaining back would permit, and grabbed a centipede that was scuttling for safety. Grimacing slightly, he bit off its head and sucked out its little ration of unsatisfying juices.

While he did so, he nearsightedly scanned the moist ground the flagstone had covered, to see if there was anything else. But that section of his larder was empty. With a weary grunt he moved over to the next paving stone. When he had it halfway up, he saw a fine Wiggling underneath. Before he could do anything about it, there was a sudden shattering of the night silence, as something exploded in the high distance. Startled, he let the halberd drop—almost smashing a toe in the process—and looked up. As he watched, there came another thundering, and, with the harsh explosions, a flickering light flood. The ragged mountains that cupped his tiny signory jumped in and out of darkness. By the time he recovered his vision the sound was almost overhead. He squinted upward into the darkness as the flashes came again, less bright this time. Then he saw a strange something descending toward him on spouting pillars of emerald flame.

“Company!” he chortled happily to himself as he tottered down the winding stairs that led to his chambers. “After all these years, real live company!”


The Stainless Steel Leech

by Roger Zelazny

narrated by Norm Sherman


I, the unjunked, am legend. Once out of a million assemblies a defective such as I might appear and go undetected, until too late.

At will, I could cut the circuit that connected me with Central Control, and be a free ’bot, and master of my own movements. I liked to visit the cemeteries, because they were quiet and different from the maddening stamp-stamp of the presses and the clanking of the crowds; I liked to look at the green and red and yellow and blue things that grew about the graves. And I did not fear these places, for that circuit, too, was defective. So when I was discovered they removed my vite-box and threw me on the junk heap.

But the next day I was gone, and their fear was great.


And Not Quite Human

by Joe L. Hensley

narrated by Spencer DiSparti


They won of course. One ship against a world, but they won easily.

The Regents would be pleased. Another planet for colonization-—even a few specimens for the labs. Earthmen, who had incredibly lived through the attack.

Forward, in a part of the great ship where the complex control panels whirred and clicked, two of the Arcturians conferred together.

“How are the Earth specimens, Doctor?” the older one asked, his voice indifferent. He touched his splendid purple pants, straightening the already precise creases.

“They stare at the walls, Captain. They do not eat what we give them. They seem to look through the guards, say very little and use their bodies feebly. I do not think that all of them will live through the trip.”

“They are weak. It only shows the laboratories are wrong. Our people are not related to them—despite the similarity in appearance. No, we are cast in a stronger mold than that.” He drummed his desk with impatient fingers. “Well—we can’t let them die. Force-feed them if necessary. Our scientists demand specimens; we are lucky that some of them lived through the attack. I don’t see how it was possible—it was such a splendid attack.”

“They have no real sickness, not even a radiation burn in the lot of them,” the doctor said. “But they are weak and morose.”

“Keep them alive and well, Doctor.”

PseudoPod 417: The Blistering


The Blistering

by Johnnie Alward


‘Try to imagine the human brain as being analogous to the ocean.’

Sam Dillinger snapped his fingers and an enormous map of the world unfurled itself above him.

‘Like the ocean, the human brain is tangible in its theory and physicality. We can touch it, understand its general uses, even map its surface topographically – the Atlantic here, the Pacific there; cognitive processing in this corner, emotional reckoning in that. We’ve studied them – lived with them – since time immemorial, but we still have so much to learn. Man may have stripmined the mountains and scorched the green earth, but he still hasn’t conquered the depths.’

He snapped his fingers again and the map reconfigured itself into a large glass pane. Paul watched as folded in on itself like crystal origami until it had become the Epsilion Prism, a corporate emblem as fiercely lionized as the golden arches or Newton’s apple.

‘Here at Epsilion, we pride ourselves in possessing the most finely detailed cognitive maps that the world has ever seen. In fifteen short years, we’ve gone from a small, speech therapy start-up on 40th street to one of the largest and most relentlessly innovative companies ever founded on American soil. We’ve helped thousands of our clients to access long-forgotten memories, undo crippling mental illnesses, and learn new languages and mathematical skillsets in the space of a few scant minutes. And still, we’ve barely begun to skim the surface of a vast and unknowable space.’

He paused and stared into the crowd – 300-odd painters, writers and musicians who hung on his every syllable.

‘That is, until now.’