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About Literature / Professional Julian M. Miles - a.k.a. JaeMale/United Kingdom Recent Activity
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Literature
Appeal
“Your lights are too bright.”
The fresh-faced lady looks nonplussed. The bearded man behind her taps something into the rig on his wrist and the brightness cuts by half. He gives me a thumbs-up. I nod.
The suited man who looks so out of place in my cabin taps his watch.
“Live in three, two, one…” He points at the fresh-faced woman.
“This is Charlene Mason of KBTX, your realtime online news source. I’m here in Manitoba Springs with Clinton Wilkes, a man who knows the Ectarra like no-one else.”
She points the microphone wand my way as the camera drone swings through a half-circle to bring me into view.
“So, Mister Wilkes, you’re an Ectarra expert?”
I shrug: “Wouldn’t go that far, Charlene. Just been researching them for a while. Come to a conclusion that isn’t popular.”
“We at KBTX are always interested in presenting well-researched alternate views, Clinton. Your work caught our attention and
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Literature
Judgement Today
Jesus came strolling through the corn, two women in winged armour following behind. He had a hemisphere of light flickering about his head and nothing caught on his robes as he walked barefoot across our yard to stand in front of my sister, Annelise.
I’d been wondering why she’d stopped playing with the deer that came to greet her every morning. Must have felt his approach. Come to think of it, things did seem nicer hereabouts, all of a sudden.
“Can we take my brother?” her voice is pitched so I can hear.
“No, Annelise. Not this time.”
This time? I thought there was only one Judgement Day?
“But he doesn’t deserve to be left behind.”
He turns his gaze upon me and I’m shot through with light.
“Eventually, for certain – if your Grandfather doesn’t corrupt him first.”
“But Granpaw Trey used to be a preacher. He wouldn’t corrupt anything.”
Jesus gives a little grin, then composes his expres
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Literature
Belonging
Another flawless afternoon.
“Spin for me.”
I smile and cut a perfect seven-twenty, poised on one heel, arms spread to imitate the mantling of an eagle. As I come to a stop, I let a flash of dragon wings spread down from my outstretched arms before dropping the visuals, transferring, and collapsing into a heap on the couch next to Lizzie.
She squeals, slaps me, then rests a finger on the end of my nose, the other hand raised in admonition: “You promised to stop using instant transference.”
Sinking deeper into my slump, I sigh: “Habit. Too easy to do magic when there’s a yottahertz CPU with a billion cores handling the reality.”
The admonishing hand slaps my forehead: “No-one knows the specs of Heart or Mind.”
“Some might do. It’s only been forty years.”
Lizzie tilts her head in surprise: “Hadn’t thought of that. It’s not like we can ask them, though.”
She’s right. The Ecofleet is still
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Literature
My Sweet Death
The airlock used to be palatial. Now the four-metre walls are coated with sickly golden crud: the exudations of a million desperados.
The bouncer is vaguely human. He waves at us: “Leave your weapons here.”
Pointing to an upturned crate next to the inner door, I grin at Ella: “Stay.”
The bouncer looks puzzled. Ella shrugs and thumps her backside down on it.
I smile at him: “Ando Morre.”
He presses the ‘open door’ panel: “Whatever.”
Inside is a typical portside speakeasy. I look about. Weather forecast: stormy with outbreaks of violence.
“Ando, you woeful excuse of a man. Come to do me a solid, brother?”
Definitely come to do you something, chum.
“Parchment Dan. Just the being I didn’t want to meet.”
Yet.
His skin rustles as his face splits nearly in half, letting out a belly laugh. His crystalline teeth glow yellow.
It’s not a pretty sight: “I see you’ve had your head replaced. I
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Literature
Play Nicely
The view goes negative, then my tummy does the thing where it tries to chuck everything out whichever end is the nearest.
It’s an hour before I can pick up the coffee left by an orderly barely older than my little sister. She doesn’t say a word. Literally runs off as soon as she’s put the cup down.
I need to clean myself up. Then someone needs a crash course in datamancer etiquette.
Stalking down the corridor in clean fatigues, I can feel people moving away. I’m sensitive enough to read data as it passes by, and able to adjust it by act of will. It’s not hard to detect the clumps of electrical impulses bundled up in lifeforms.
“Specialist Leeson. What are you doing away from your post?” Sergeant-Major Ipswich sounds annoyed.
“I’m not at my post because it became irrelevant. I’m looking for the shitstick who gave permission for someone to let off an EMP within a half-kilometre of me without warning. Honestly, SM, I’m tryi
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Literature
Like Mist in the Sun
Another cold coffee. It’s the last one I’ll have for a while. Tigerhouse closes tonight and affording bean coffee will go back on the luxuries list.
“Last one?”
Elena slides into the seat opposite, looking like a pinup from the side of someone else’s bomber. Her coffee is steaming and she’s got a double-stack bacon and stilton sandwich. It’s amazing what being pretty and having no truck with overbearing bosses will do for the punctuality and quality of your mealtimes.
She spins the plate so half of the pile is facing me.
“That’s yours. Since you haven’t had a break.”
I examine her expression to see if it’s a wind-up.
“Not joking, Doug. Get some while it’s hot.”
The lady watches without comment as I go face down in hot food. Minutes later, I come up for air, wash it down with cold coffee, then carefully wipe the wreckage from my face.
She grins: “That didn’t touch the sides, did it?
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Literature
The Low View
Confined in a 4-metre cube with nothing but my thoughts for company. Poor conversation and haunting memories by day, convoluted dreams by night. The dreams are too disturbing to contemplate long enough to unravel, so they leave varying degrees of disassociation in their wake. I kind of welcome that. Anything to relieve the monotony. After the first sets of 100 press-ups and sit-ups, I switch to jogging on the spot until my legs give way. Takes a while. I’m in the best physical condition of my life. My instructor would be proud, I think. She’d certainly be surprised. I was never one for excelling at anything. Doing just enough to get by without hassle was my way.
Explaining the reasons for that would take a while and requires insight I don’t possess: family problems, inadequate father figure, who knows?
Back to it. Every month or so I like to do this. Tell the walls my story. Keeps things from coming loose in my head.
Earth got attacked. Nothing major, but it took a lo
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Literature
Paper Moon
The walls are sweating as I labour up the stairs. Intravenous packs are heavy and I have to buy in bulk, otherwise I couldn’t afford enough of them. The door opens to my retina print and I barge in, pushing the door closed with my arse.
Colin’s left me a fresh sterile pack with needles – he must have got his overtime. Shame he doesn’t care enough to stay realside and celebrate. Virtual sex may be athletic, but it’s just not squishy enough.
Drink a half-litre of sugar water and strip. Into the recliner, sort the wires and tubes, sliding the needles into my arms. New steel feels strange, for all that I know there’s no real difference. At least he hung full bags for me. I don the headset but leave the gloves. Reaching into the left one, I press the ‘engage’ toggle. As the wires slide into my brain, my hands clench and arms shake. Medsites say that’s a symptom of nerve damage, but it’s irrelevant. Not like I can afford to have it
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Literature
The Eyes That Never Sleep
I open my eyes to behold a slit of blue between tenements that descend from lofty, sunlit heights to the sordid mess of which I am a larger part. Lining that strip of clear sky are the blurry, baroque patterns made by fire escapes and drying racks set against the cerulean heavens.
Lowering my sight, I find aged brickwork well on its way to possessing the rugose anonymity of weathered rock due to a thick layer of ordure. In places that glistens like oils left to dry by a demented painter.
I have but one boot remaining. The sock on the other foot bears more resemblance to what covers the walls than any garment. My trews are ragged, likely ruined. I am shirtless under my heavy coat, and am lying on a soiled mattress.
Have I an appointment? Am I late? Something disturbed-
My testicles are wet.
Pressing my chin to my chest, I see a bottle resting against my crotch, angled in a way that incriminates my left hand for dereliction of gripping duties.
Righting the bottle, I narrow my eyes, then
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Literature
Thud, Bang
Is all I hear.
On a world where everything uses parts of the visual spectrum humans don’t, we’d have been better off staying away. Far from its star, the eternally-twilit forests of Modbiaent XIV are protected by interstellar law and, more effectively, by orbiting weapons platforms. Naturally, this isn’t entirely about conserving the environment. Modbiaent XIV has stocks of a rare element, dubbed Biaeum, that has many possible uses. It’s been found on a couple of asteroids, but the quantities here are far greater.
Light in a spectrum that allows humans to see actually causes some indigenous life forms to break down. Labelled ‘photonecrosis’ by the media, it means that humans visiting this world should adjust themselves, rather than seeking to adjust the environment. Drysuits mated to space helmets using visual technology borrowed from the military is the current vogue.
“Tassy! What was that?” James sounds scared.
I made contact with him a
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Literature
It's Not Like They'll Miss It
The last words my Pa said to me were: “Down where the rocks run free, and the colours run like blood.”
Not the traditional deathbed wisdom for the young buck, but certainly something to stay with one. After seventeen years of prospecting, I still think about it. When Kristin and I transitioned from lust to romance, I knew I’d share the words eventually. That time is tonight, in one of those quiet interludes before dropping off to sleep.
She sits up and replies: “Melting in magma.”
That makes me sit up.
Dondas Kieller, my Pa, had been a crystal hunter, a seeker of the impossible gemstones that can be found in the rubble that drifts through space. His business partner for twenty years, Alois Johnston, had quit barely six months before Dondas found the motherlode.
Not that there was any mining involved. He found an ancient spaceship tethered within an isolated asteroid. How long it had been there was a question with a staggering answer: it had been abandoned
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Literature
He Wore Sorrow... She, the Crown
The bright lights seem colder, shining from tall glass towers, set against a sky made starless by clouds. Nearer are the lights that adorn the forest of Christmas trees on the plaza above. Closer still are the control boards that flicker above the six-lane carriageway at our backs. Closest are the lights we string while setting up against the two-metre fence that separates pedestrians from traffic.
The wash of passing vehicles provides ventilation for this informal market. It’s surprisingly fresh air, what with most of them being electric. The occasional waft of exhaust fumes marks a classic storming by, while a smell like grass after rain indicates the passage of a cold fusion power unit: a limousine or Domestic Army truck.
Speeding traffic draws the eye but gives nothing back: people watching at the speed of modern society – too fast to get details or gain anything from the experience.
“Got something for me?”
I know that voice. Tobin Dray, a coarse throwback i
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Literature
Arterial Drive
I’m sitting in a luxurious café on the seafront at Torslit, watching ten-metre-tall purple waves break across the dome, when a news article catches my eye on the ever-present infofeed.
“Police today released the constructed image of a human they wish to question in connection with several gruesome murders across Fabulon. The suspect stands one point seven metres tall and speaks with a Churuish accent. If you see this male, notify a polipoint immediately. Do not attempt to approach, engage, or apprehend this dangerous being.”
The image is of a bearded everyman in a plaid bodysuit, with an old scar on one cheek and dragon tattoos curling round his forearms.
I wait for the words linking him to killings on worlds like this one, but – as usual – they never come. Even if they did suspect, I doubt it would be broadcast. But, every time, I still wait for it. Like all of my kind, I’d like my art to be appreciated. Which is the eternal dichotomy: to conti
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Literature
Get Out of Guildford
Crane somersaults over my head with a gleeful shout. He lands behind me in the crater as a spray of purple fire lashes by above us.
“Why are you so bleedin’ happy?”
“I love it when a war doesn’t fuck about.”
“Come again?”
He waves his hand to encompass the battlefield about us, a place we used to call Guildford.
“My grandad did four tours where he spent more time oiling the guns than using ‘em. Said war was dull, you needed a full-tilt apocalypse to keep it interesting.”
“You had a fucked-up family, brother.”
He grins: “Didn’t realise that until I got out into the real world.”
Something that looks like a tiger crossed with a lobster lunges over the rim of our dent in the dirt. We gun it down. Takes four full clips before it stops trying to slaughter us.
He points, shaking his head: “That’s new. Big, too.”
“Buggeration. Time to offski.”
Encountering a lone fourth
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Literature
She's Gonna Cut Us Down
I encounter God at midnight in a convenience store. She’s chatting with the bloke behind the counter while making herself a caramel latte on the new coffee machine.
“So I said to him, you shouldn’t service rich people all the time. Try offering a few poor people their heart’s desires. You’ll get more variety.”
It’s the offhand way she mentions it. The man behind the counter is just nodding his head but not really listening. Otherwise, he’d have heard the truth in her words. Conversational honesty, I call it.
“That’s a good term for it.”
I look up to meet the regard of sparkling pink eyes. There’s a smile on her face.
“You’ve spotted me. Let me buy you a coffee for that.”
She turns her attention back to the machine and doesn’t say another word until the drink’s made. Waving the cups in my direction, she tips her head toward the door.
“Come on. There’s a better place to enjoy
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Literature
The Spires of Thenix
There’s a half-kilometre tourist cruiser flying between Adma and Therna. It looks tiny from this distance. Compared to them, it would be at any distance.
Douglas Thenix translated the Decoran Stone, an artefact found during the excavation of a site near Lothal in India. It described the origins of the Vimana, the magnificent flying palaces of the Sanskrit epics. At the time, his work was ridiculed.
A century later, we arrived here and proved him right. This planet is named in his honour, as his translation found no names for homeworld or inhabitants. Nor did it provide warning of the awe-inspiring structures left by a civilisation so obviously advanced it scares me. I’m not meant to be scared: I’m the Imperial Earth Administrator for this sector.
Named for beings from his translations, these towering pieces of architecture baffle us. Each is less than a kilometre in diameter, yet they soar at least sixteen kilometres into the sky, protected by a forcefield that defies
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My third DD!

Thank you.

I shall continue to put words into stories and stories into books.

You folk who comment, favourite, and communicate are why I do this.

Thank you.

PS: 'The Courtesy' will be in this year's anthology, 'Never a Sky We Know', which will be published before the end of the year - sorry to be vague; I'm completing a novel (and monthly flash fiction submissions, and the short fiction that pops into my head) and only have one set of paws to type with, so scheduling is my usual 'when I finish this, and that - oh, and that one over there, I'll do it' variety.

My main site is www.lizardsofthehost.co.uk - why not click over and have a browse? I've lots of stuff online.

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Rafellin's Profile Picture
Rafellin
Julian M. Miles - a.k.a. Jae
Artist | Professional | Literature
United Kingdom
Author, publisher, poet, storyteller, project manager, game designer, pagan, and part-time gentleman.

(Profile photo by Maricel Dragan, slitsight.com)
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:iconkittysib:
KittySib Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Kitty kitty - RaveThank you for the llama and have a good day!Kitty kitty - Dont care   
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:iconiantp:
IanTP Featured By Owner May 18, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Happy Birthday dude, hope you had a good one :) x
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:iconrafellin:
Rafellin Featured By Owner May 18, 2018  Professional Writer
Ta.
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:iconlady-pilot:
Lady-Pilot Featured By Owner May 18, 2018
Happy birthday and best wishes!
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:iconrafellin:
Rafellin Featured By Owner May 18, 2018  Professional Writer
Thankee.
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:iconsimonjm:
SimonJM Featured By Owner May 17, 2018
Happy Birthday!  For Rafellin 2018 by SimonJM
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:iconfrankt:
FrankT Featured By Owner May 15, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Tyvm for the Llama :)
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:iconakrasiel:
akrasiel Featured By Owner Dec 3, 2017  Professional Writer
:noes: Another Jae!
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:iconrafellin:
Rafellin Featured By Owner Dec 4, 2017  Professional Writer
Yup. 'Tis only a nickname, though. The name on my books is Julian M. Miles.

Pleased to make your acquaintance, miss.
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:iconakrasiel:
akrasiel Featured By Owner Dec 4, 2017  Professional Writer
Only a nickname for me too, even though that's what's going on my books. :giggle:
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