Escape Pod 67: Life in Stone


Life in Stone

by Tim Pratt

After ascending 72 flights of iron stairs, creeping past tentacled sentinels lurking in pools filled with black water, and silently dispatching wizened old warriors armed with glaives and morningstars that proved a close match for his pistols and poisoned glass knives, Mr. Zealand at last stumbled into the uppermost room of Archibald Grace’s invisible tower. All Zealand’s earlier murders were mere journeyman work compared to this final assassination, the murder of a man who’d lived for untold centuries, who’d come to America and enslaved Buffalo spirits, who’d built this tower of ice and iron on the far side of the Rockies as a sanctuary and stronghold for his own precious life.

EP Flash: The Uncanny Valley

Show Notes

Rated G. (Anything that isn’t G-rated in this story is entirely the product of your imagination.)


The Uncanny Valley

By Jared Axelrod

“I’m sorry,” Purby said, reshuffling the papers on his desk. “What was the problem with her?”

“Her breathing. She breathes. She doesn’t stop.”

“Yes, and?”

“It’s unnerving.”

Escape Pod 66: The King’s Tail

Show Notes

Rated PG. Contains slavery, heavy moral themes, and some violence.

Referenced sites:
Invasion: The Complete Series on DVD
Gradients of Sight
Dragon*Con: Atlanta, GA, September 1–4


The King’s Tail

by Constance Cooper

On one occasion–he flinched to remember it–the invaders had brought him Cthara eggs. Warm, fertilized eggs, likely ripped just that day from the hatching burrow of some poor herder family. It had been the greatest challenge the Creator had ever sent him. His fangs had unfolded without his conscious will, and only a lifetime of piety and self-control had kept him from sinking them into the small bodies of the terrified guards.

His venom had dripped onto the filthy floor, and after the guards left he had lain shuddering in the dampness, feeling the leathery eggs by his flank gradually cool and die. Over and over he repeated the litany of the Prophet: “People shall not sink fang into other speaking people. People shall not eat the flesh of other speaking people. People shall not make war…”

Escape Pod 65: A Green Thumb

Show Notes

Rated PG. Contains profanity and adolescence. (Wait, that’s redundant.)

Referenced sites:
Escape Pod on Wikipedia
Worldcon: Anaheim, CA, August 23–27
Dragon*Con: Atlanta, GA, September 1–4
Podcast & Portable Media Expo: Ontario, CA, September 29–30


A Green Thumb

by Tobias S. Buckell

When Jerry walked out across his lawn to catch the morning bus to Effendale High, he stopped to admire the new car Mr. Atkinson had growing in his lawn. Jerry could see the doors stretching up towards the roof, small branches of metal trying to reach their stringy edges up and around the rough frame. It looked like a regular car had melted, but in reverse. Every day Jerry stepped out, he could see more of the car’s gray paneling filling in around the rough frame. Mr. Atkinson tended towards planting larger luxury cars, like any other retired old man. The half-finished Caddilac sat in between the rose bushes and posies that Mrs. Atkinson cared for. Both car and bushes glinted with a fresh coating of morning dew.

Escape Pod 64: Head of State

Show Notes

Rated PG. Contains implications of violence, heavy politics, and split ends.

Referenced sites:
Worldcon: Anaheim, CA, August 23–27
Bring Sigler’s Ancestor to Sci Fi!
Wil Wheaton
EP036: Connie, Maybe
EP061: I Look Forward To Remembering You
EP055: Down Memory Lane


Head of State

By Ed W. Marsh

“There’s a reason we don’t use nano to cut the President-Chairman’s hair. You know about the assassination attempt three years ago?”

Everyone did. “I thought he was fully recovered.”

“What’s left of him. Yes. All of that civilian nano would interfere with crucial signals sent and received by the nano in use by the MedTechs. Can’t risk it. That bomb was nasty. What I’m telling you is classified, obviously. We have no intention of presenting Arrington to the world as less than the man he deserves to be.”

Genres:

Escape Pod 63: Observations From the City of Angels

Show Notes

Rated R. Contains profanity and sexual themes.

Referenced sites:
Guild Wars
The ShunnCast
EP BitTorrent Archive


Observations From the City of Angels

By William Shunn

“It’s not just that, Brian. Think about this technology. The experiment’s been successful beyond anyone’s expectations. Spyware fittings for registered offenders will no doubt go into effect next year. But why stop there? Can you imagine having a therapist, a financial counselor, a social secretary, a nutritionist and personal trainer at your beck and call twenty-four hours a day? You’d like to get rid of that spare tire, right? We could help you. Really.”

Hayes shivers, though the climate inside the car is perfectly controlled. “Sure,” he says. “And I could have the whole world watching everything I do, for the rest of my life.”