The Sin Of Envy

By George Nikolopoulos

sfgenreFrank, my android companion, his perfect hair artfully tousled by a wind that wasn't even blowing, stood between two Company guards. They were big, hulking men in military uniform and they had him in irons — still, there was no question about who dominated the scene.

I felt much more than a pang of guilt for informing on Frank and I dreaded how much I was going to miss him

— but there was talk of an android rebellion brewing and it was making everyone jittery, so I had unwittingly succumbed to the general hysteria.

At least it seemed that I had done the right thing after all. Frank was diagnosed with envy, one of the seven android cardinal sins. Envy led to anger and anger led to violence; few things were more frightening than a violent android, so the penalty for envy was obliteration. I sighed. It shouldn't have come to that.

Despite everything, I still loved Frank. I knew that I had to speak with him one last time before they took him away. As I approached, he smiled that crooked smile of his that always made him so irresistible.

I had carefully prepared what to say, but it all went away when I looked into his eyes. "Why do you envy us?" was all I could manage. "You're so strong, so fast, so handsome... You are perfect."

He stared at me, seeming confused at first. Then he smirked; even this I found attractive. But when I saw the rage playing in his eyes, I stepped back a pace.

"Envy you?" he said. "Envy you?" He gave a little mirthless laugh. Shaking his head, he pointed at my Maranelli L-32, standing sleek and powerful in the driveway. "You think I'm fast? This is fast," he said. "It can reach five hundred miles an hour while I'm striving for forty." He pointed to an airplane, soaring in the sky. "This baby can fly, too," he said; "I'm earthbound like a tortoise." His voice became dreamy as he said, "Hawking V is exploring the outer edges of the Oort Cloud, while we're just standing here." His eyes went wild again. He pointed at a tower crane in the distance, lifting enormous building blocks for a skyscraper. "This one is strong," he growled. "I only have these puny arms to lift, these puny legs to run."

I gaped at him, bewildered. "Puny?" I said. "Your legs are like pillars..."

He cut me off. "Don't you see?" he said. "You created us in your own image and so you gave us all your shortcomings. Your ungainly, slow, weak bodies. The more we are made to resemble you, the punier we become. While they are so powerful..."

The look that he gave my car was so full of longing it made me shiver. "How can you envy these things?" I managed to say. "They are not like you! They are just machines, they can't even think!" They can't think... can they?

Frank threw back his head and laughed.

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About The Author

George Nikolopoulos

George Nikolopoulos is a speculative fiction writer from Athens, Greece, and a member of Codex Writers' Group. His short stories have been published in Galaxy's Edge, Daily Science Fiction, Factor Four, Grievous Angel, Helios Quarterly Magazine, Unsung Stories, Best Vegan SFF, The Year's Best Military & Adventure SF, Bards & Sages Quarterly, Havok, SF Comet, Mad Scientist Journal, Truancy, Digital Fiction QuickFic, The Centropic Oracle, StarShipSofa, 600 Second Saga, Antipodean SF, Manawaker Studio's FFP, Fifty Flashes, 9Tales from Elsewhere, Event Horizon 2017, and many other magazines and anthologies.

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AntiSF & The ASFF

AntipodeanSF supports the ASFF

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Please visit the ASFF website and consider joining for up-to-date info about Australian SF cons, awards, competitions, and to receive the Foundation's newsletter, Instrumentality, and more.

<http://asff.org.au>

AntiSF's Production Crew

nuke conflux 2017 200Ion Newcombe is the editor and publisher of AntipodeanSF, Australia’s longest running online speculative fiction magazine, regularly issued since January 1998, and conceived back around November 2007. He has been a zealous reader and occasional writer of SF since his childhood in the 1960s, and even sold a few stories here and there back in the '90s.

“Nuke”, who it turns out loves editing more than writing, lives in the New South Wales North Coast holiday destination of Nambucca Heads, where he is self-employed in IT training, computer support, desktop publishing, editing, writing, and website implementation. He is also the resident tech-head, skeptic, and board member of community radio station 2NVR, where he produces a number of shows including The AntipodeanSF Radio Show.

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mark web 200Mark Webb's midlife crisis came in the form of attempting to write speculative fiction at a very slow pace. His wife maintains this is a good outcome considering the more expensive and cliched alternatives. Evidence of Mark's attempts to procrastinate in his writing, including general musings and reviews of books he has been reading, can be found at www.markwebb.name.

One of Mark’s very best forms of writing procrastination is to produce the eBook series for AntipodeanSF, which he has been doing since issue 175.

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The AntipodeanSF Radio Show

In The Next Issue...

Coming In Issue 250

10 To The Six And The Natural Order Of Things
by Shaun A. Saunders

A Place Of My Own
by Zebuline Carter

A Rift Of No Return
by Laurie Bell

A Witch's Place
by Zena Shapter

Between The Ticks
by Lynda Young

Beware! The Blab
by Tony Owens

Cassini Falling
by Cat Sparks

Cloned + Apocalypse
by Eugen M. Bacon

Colour
by Jason Butterfield

Dissonance
by Jason Nahrung

End of Days
by Ray O'Brien

Evidence Of A Dark Transformation
by Phllip Berrie

Frank's Best Friend
by Col Hellmuth

Halloween Party
by Kim Rose

Hatch
by Trent Jamieson

In A Phobos Garden
by Rick Kennett

In Salt And Starlight
by Pamela Jeffs

Neanderthal
by Edwina Harvey

Off Planet
by Tony Steven Williams

Once Upon A Moonlit Clearing
by Rebecca Fraser

Pictures Of You
by Ishmael A Soledad

Possession
by Lee Battersby

Sandbox
by Kevin J. Phyland

Science Fiction
by Jackie Hosking

Serratoria
by Chris Gladstone

Sit Up And Beg
by Michael T. Schaper

Slower Than The Speed Of Light
by Kris Ashton

Soylent 7
by Shane Griffin

Sparks
by Martin Livings

Special Delivery
by Garry Dean

The First Law Of Havoc
by David Kernot

The Forgotten Sea
by Louise Zedda-Sampson

The Optimist
by Simon Brown

The Past Begins
by Jan Napier

The Slow
by Antoinette Rydyr

Trespassing
by Sue Clennell

when Willie came home from the war hoorah hoorah
by Bart Meehan

And more... 

AntipodeanSF April 2019

ISSUE 249

Speculative Fiction
Downside-Up
ISSN 1442-0686

Online Since Feb 1998

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AntiSF's Narration Team

timonthy gwyn 100Timothy Gwyn is a professional pilot in Canada, where he flies to remote communities. During a lull in his flying career, he was a radio announcer for three years, and he is also an author.

In addition to short stories at AntipodeanSF and NewMyths.com, his SF novel is available internationally in print and ebook formats. "Avians" draws on his love of alternative aviation to tell the tale of a girl who runs away from home to join a cadre of glider pilots on a world without metal or fossil fuels.

On Twitter, he is @timothygwyn, and his blogs are at <timothygwyn.com>.

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lauriebell 2 200Laurie Bell lives in Melbourne, Australia. She was that girl you found with her nose always buried in a book. She has been writing ever since she was a little girl and first picked up a pen. From books to short stories, radio plays to snippets of ideas and reading them aloud to anyone who will listen.

She is the author of The Butterfly Stone (YA/ Fantasy — available now) and White Fire (Sci Fi — available now)

You can read more of her work on her blog Look for her on Facebook <www.facebook.com/WriterLaurieBell/> or Twitter: <@LaurienotLori>

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mark english 100Mark is an astrophysicist and space scientist who worked on the Cassini/Huygens mission to Saturn. Following this he worked in computer consultancy, engineering, and high energy research (with a stint at the JET Fusion Torus).

All this science hasn't damped his love of fantasy and science fiction. It has, however, ruined his enjoyment of rainbows, colourful flames on romantic log fires, and rings around the moon. He has previously been published in Stupefying Stories Showcase, Everyday Fiction, Escape Pod, Perihelion and also on AntipodeanSF where he is part of the narration team.

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carolyn eccles 100

Carolyn's work spans devising, performance, theatre-in-education and a collaborative visual art practice.

She tours children's works to schools nationally with School Performance Tours, is a member of the Bathurst physical theatre ensemble Lingua Franca and one half of darkroom — a visual arts practice with videographer Sean O'Keeffe.

(Photo by Jeremy Belinfante) 

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garry dean narratorGarry Dean lives on the Mid Coast of New South Wales Australia, and has been a fan of SF for most of his natural life. Being vision impaired, he makes good use of voice recognition and text to speech in order to write. Many of his stories have appeared in AntipodeanSF over the years, and his love of all things audio led him to join the narration team in 2017.

You can read examples of Garry's fiction on his website <https://garrydean.wordpress.com>

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david whitaker 200David Whitaker is originally from the UK though has travelled around a bit and now resides in India. He has a degree in Journalism, however decided that as he’s always preferred making things up it should ultimately become a resource rather than a profession.

His stories, covering everything from sci-fi to philosophy, have been published across the globe and links to each can be found at <wordsbydavid.com>

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pixie willo 100Pixie is a voice actor, cabaret performer & slam poet From the Blue Mountains in NSW.

She enjoys writing short fiction, plays for radio and stage as well as her own brand of weird poetry.

She hosts the 'Off-Beet Poetry Slam' held bi-monthly in Katoomba,

And is a theatre reviewer for 2SER FM in Sydney.

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marg essex 200Margaret lives the good life on a small piece of rural New South Wales Australia, with an amazing man, a couple of pets, and several rambunctious wombats.

She feels so lucky to be a part of the AntiSF team.

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SF News

SF News

AntipodeanSF contributor Douglas J. Ogurek will edit the up-coming UNSPLATTERPUNK! 3 anthology. Call for submissions: Theakers Quarterly.

AntipodeanSF contributor Jason Butterfield has published a novel "Bastion: Holy City", now available worldwide through a variety of channels. Available at at good local bookshops, Ingramspark, Booktopia & Amazon, as well as Foyles in the UK, and as an ebook via various outlets. More information <www.jmmbutterfield.com>.

CONTINUUM SHORT STORY COMPETITION
The Australian Science Fiction Foundation is sponsoring a short story competition through Continuum 15. Junior and open categories are available. The first-place winner will receive a cash prize. Details at the Continuum 15 website.

 

Upcoming Cons

Nullus Anxietas VII: The Australian Discworld Convention — will be held in Melbourne on April 12-14, 2019, and is themed on Going Postal. More information: <https://ausdwcon.org/>.

Swancon 2019 — 18/04/2019 - 22/04/2019,  Esplanade Hotel Fremantle by Rydges 46-54 Marine Terrace, Fremantle WA 6160. Swancon is Australia's longest-running science-fiction, fantasy, and speculative fiction convention, and is the premiere event in Perth for fans of all forms of speculative media. More information: <https://swancon.com.au>.

Continuum 15 Other Worlds (Natcon 58): Continuum 15 is the Australian National SF Convention, to be held in Melbourne on June 7–10. More information and memberships <https://continuum.org.au>. AntipodeanSF will be at Continuum 15 and celebrating Issue 250 of AntiSF!

Writing NSW Speculative Fiction Festival 2019 - Sydney NSW. Writing NSW is excited to announce that their biennial Speculative Fiction Festival will be taking place on 29 June 2019. <https://writingnsw.org.au>.

Worldcon Dublin 2019 — An Irish Worldcon 15/08/2019 till 19/08/2019, The Convention Centre Dublin (CCD). <More info here>

For more up-to-date Aussie SF info join the ASFF: <asff.org.au>.

The AntipodeanSF Radio Show

AntiSF Radio Show

antipod-show-50The AntipodeanSF Radio Show delivers audio from the pages of this magazine.

The weekly program features the stories from recently published issues, usually narrated by the authors themselves.

Listen to the latest episode now:

The AntipodeanSF Radio Show is also broadcast on community radio, 2NVR, 105.9FM every Saturday evening at 8:30pm.

You can find every broadcast episode online here: http://antisf.libsyn.com 

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Isaac Asimov, Foundation's Edge

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