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Everyday Drabbles #765: Survey Flight

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The ultralight aircraft buzzed through the sky above the gargantuan alien creatures.
“Can we get closer?” The biologist asked, leaning out of the craft’s door with her camera.
“Do you want to be lunch, doctor?” The pilot asked. To him, they resembled giant stingrays. He’d been stung by a ray once as a child. Back then, there were still fish in the sea; and humans on Earth.
“Don’t be so paranoid,” she said.
But it was his job to make sure she got back to base safe, and with so few humans left, he would make damn sure she did.

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Everyday Drabbles #764: The Musketeer

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The duke’s men had entered the palace. We fought them hand-to-hand with flashing blades and single-shot pistols, our organized lines dissolving into a chaotic melee through the corridors and ballrooms.
I had no love for the king, but the duke was no more palatable. I’d sworn oaths, and I would uphold them.
But as the day wore on, I watched good men die. I killed good men. For what? The vanity of a throne? A title? Their bodies lay among the smashed marbles and torn tapestries, and I swore a new oath.
Whoever won would have to deal with me.

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Everyday Drabbles #763: Water Priestess

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I expected the Priestess of Water to be a willowy maiden sitting beside a pool, using her powers for divination or healing. I didn’t think she’d kick my ass.
She flowed across the training yard, moving gracefully from stance to stance. A spiraling jet of water danced through the air around her, forming a shield to deflect my attacks one minute and snapping out like a wet towel the next. It wasn’t long before she forced me to yield.
“You weren’t what I expected,” I said.
“Water is unpredictable,” she said. “But you will learn to go with the flow.”

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Everyday Drabbles #762: The Cloud People

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Humanity had left everything behind. They escaped the prison of the flesh and transcended their physical forms. Living as beings of pure energy, they inhabited virtual realms only limited by their imaginations.
No longer shackled to their frail and limited bodies, they left the strife and conflict of the old world behind. It was the ultimate eternal golden age.
Sometimes someone would venture close enough to the physical world to let the last body know what was happening.
He was patient with them, as they were his only visitors. But somebody had to stay behind to keep the servers running.

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Everyday Drabbles #761: The Eye of the Tiger

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Tiger was engineered for violence. They’d grown him in a lab as an amusement for crowds grown used to mundane bloodsport. Gestated with the teeth and claws of an apex predator, he was expertly trained in the arts of fighting and killing.
The crowds, as fickle as they were, loved Tiger. He didn’t merely survive in the ring but excelled, winning the title of Champion.
But Tiger was troubled. He looked around himself and saw a gilded cage.
Tigers are cunning predators and patient. Someday, he would break that cage and come for the throats of those who created him.

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Everyday Drabbles #760: Tulip Mania

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It was a perfect crime.
Technically, it wasn’t even a time at all considering where he committed it in the timeline.
He’d travel back in time to Amsterdam in the 1630s. A few short trips gave him insider knowledge on which bulbs would produce the most valuable tulips. All he had to do was resell the bulbs, deposit the profits, and check his bank balance in his own time. Sure, it caused hyperinflation in the seventeenth century, but that wasn’t his problem.
Except for this time, he materialized surrounded by bloodthirsty botanists looking to make a deal of their own.

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Everyday Drabbles #759: Spring Hillside

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The sorceress dismounted from her giant golem and examined the hillside. Pink and purple blossoms carpeted the grass. A warm breeze sent them dancing through the air with a sweet scent. She sighed contentedly.
Her brief reverie was interrupted by earth-shaking footsteps. The approaching construct wasn’t as large as her’s, but made up for it by being covered in jagged spikes. She watched as it trampled a particularly fine blossom.
“Sorceress Miwako!” The rider called. “I challenge you!”
She grimaced, and with a complex gesture, dismissed the boy’s golem out from under him.
“Not here,” she admonished as he fell.

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Everyday Drabbles #758: The Fleet of Venus

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Rule one: Never look down.
There was much of anything to see, just pink clouds piling out to the horizon.
Rule Two: Secure your lines.
She checked both safety lines and the lockdown on the cargo. All good.
Rule Three: Watch out for your neighbors.
She raised her signaler and flashed out a message. Two quick acknowledgments came back, confirming all’s well. Satisfied, the pilot started the hover engine and signaled her departure. It was a long way to the next Pylon, and the winds above Venus were fair. She raised sail and kicked her little boat into the sky.

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Everyday Drabbles #757: The Ghost’s Game

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The ghost hunters moved cautiously through the abandoned house. They went past the grimy kitchen and dusty family room and up the stairs.
The group split up in the hallway, and he found himself alone in a child’s bedroom. A TV and vintage game console sat by the bed, and discarded medication bottles stood in a row on the dresser. Suddenly, his equipment went wild. The door slammed.
“What do you want?” He asked.
The television turned itself on. He understood, and started a 2-player game.
Sometimes the vengeful spirit wasn’t in the house. Sometimes, it was in another castle.

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Everyday Drabbles #756: The Architect’s Patron

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She’d always hated the architect, but he was a genius, and she wanted a house that was as fashionable as she was, so she gave him free rein when he designed her house.
It didn’t matter to her that the inbuilt furniture was uncomfortable and that his ludicrous open-air fireplace was a safety hazard. She grumbled and put up with his quirks and theories to be the toast of the architecture world.
She sold the house when the market crashed, confident that at least her name would remain attached to the site.
The developers tore it down to build apartments.

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