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The Ktesh: Delicious but Deadly

Any traveller will recognize that the first sounds and smells of a town are those of the settlement’s ktesh. The birds stand only as tall as the knee, but, as the saying goes, “All cities are built of the bones of the ktesh.” They hunt as a flock, consuming the rats, mice, and toka of a settlement and, in return, the people of the settlement consume the flesh of the ktesh. The color of its feathers never fade and are used for spectacular artworks, and its bones are read by namedealers to read portents of the future.

The meat has a bolder flavor than that of any other bird, but is both more delicate and more abundant than that of sheep or goats. It bears well the spices that travel the Great Road and combines well with eggplant and garlic. In most cities, it can be purchased, heavily salted and spiced, grilled on sticks.

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Captain Radish Saumet’s Spacesuit

We’ve seen Radish Saumet’s spacecraft, Happy Delivery, before! Her spacecraft doesn’t have much of an aesthetic (except for the spraypainted Jolly Roger on the side) because it’s so modular; Radish swaps parts as needed, keeping the ISp and thrust as high as she can afford.

Her spacesuit, on the other hand, is another matter. Over time, she’s swapped dozens of parts in and out to match her tiny frame and her habits. Barring repairs, though, it’s remained the way it is for the last couple of years. Continue reading Captain Radish Saumet’s Spacesuit

The Corvosapien

A million years from now, Corvosapiens is the greatest intelligence on Earth. Humans are now a matter for their archaeologists to debate, while none yet realize that the Third Order Stars are the last remaining artificial satellites.

But they will soon. Their three-dimensional assumptions, in addition to the observations of the planet made by athletes flying at high altitudes, give them an easier philosophical route to space than humans ever had. Continue reading The Corvosapien

New World: Spike Trotman’s Bold Entry into Science Fiction Comics

First contact stories, with their inherent and explicit contact with The Other, approach the Platonic ideal of Science Fiction. They highlight what we think is true about ourselves (for whatever value of “ourselves” the author cares about) and contrast it with an alien that possesses a critical difference in that dimension. Through the meeting of “us” and “them”, the author then gets to make an assertion about the society in which they live, for better and worse, and then get to stretch their imagination to do all the really fun, skiffy stuff, like determining how their aliens’ different physiological needs presents them with different cultural options.

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the alien art of designer joshua a.c. newman