Wednesday, July 7, 2021

“Merger” • by Eric Fomley


Vi chewed the bloody steak, the juices dripping down her chin.

Lang, her chief of security, sat across from her. A smile cracked his face.

“The White Suns can’t stop us once the merger goes through,” he said. “No spice will go in or out of this station without passing through our hands.”

Vi nodded and forked another piece into her mouth.

The waiter came through and dropped off a nice-looking pie.

When he spun and left, Lang looked sharply at Vi.

“What’s wrong?” she asked.

“I’m pretty sure he wasn’t our waiter.”

The holo of the pie winked out—revealing the swirling nanobomb.

¤     ¤     ¤

Eric Fomley’s
work has appeared in Daily Science Fiction, Galaxy’s Edge, Flame Tree Press, and The Black Library. You can read more of his work on his website at or buy him a coffee in exchange for a story at



A few words from the publisher:

Bruce Bethke here. This week The Pete Wood Challenge is bringing you seven new flash fiction stories, all of which key off some slight variation on the phrase, “I’m pretty sure he wasn’t our waiter.” In an ideal world we’d like to see you express your appreciation for these stories by taking a closer look at our books and magazines—

For example, consider this audio book, THE COUNTERFEIT CAPTAIN: just the perfect thing to listen to while you’re driving to your summer vacation getaway.

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