The Necon quad was packed, as usual. Writers drinking shit-tons of booze, and eating fuck-tons of saugies. Bracken MacLeod and Errick Danger Nunnally wore kilts, and shirts that read THING 1 and THING 2.

“Hey,” said Errick, motioning to Bracken. “Is that your robot?” He nodded his head in the robot’s direction. Bracken followed Errick’s gaze to a robot that looked similar to the one in Lost in Space.

“Nah,” Bracken replied, gulping vigorously from his hand-crafted IPA. “I think that’s Jim Moore’s. I heard he takes it everywhere he goes.”

Just then, Jim entered the quad, hugged a bunch of people really hard, coralled his robot (where it was entertaining a bevy of single ladies with sordid stories of its youth), and marched it over to Bracken and Errick.

“Hey, fellas, have you met Jordan?”

“You named your old-timey-looking robot ‘Jordan’?” Errick asked, incredulous.

“Sure, why not?” Jim said, and grinned wide.

“Well, why not something cooler, like ‘Heliox 7,’ or ‘Steel Pete’?”

“Those aren’t very good names, Errick.”

“I know, sorry. I panicked.”

“Anyway,” Jim continued, “the reason I brought Jordan over—besides the fact that Brett wrote it this way—is that I think it can help you settle on the title of your forthcoming ChiZine novel.”

“Uh, okay. I guess. What does it have in mind?”

“The question is,” Jim replied, and winked, “what doesn’t it have in mind?”

Bracken pounded the rest of his beer, used Errick’s belt buckle to open a fresh one, and said, “This is very unhelpful so far, Jim. You know that, right?”

Jim ignored Bracken, locked eyes with Errick. “What part of ‘infinite possibilities’ don’t you get, Errick?”

“‘Infinite possibilities’ is the problem, Jim. Too many choices.”

“Fine,” Jim said, suddenly crestfallen. “Arm wrestle my robot instead.”

“What, now?”

“Do it. Arm wrestle him.”

“I will not.”

“You will.”


“Coward. What about you, Bracken? You think you’re so tough. Arm wrestle my FUCKING robot!”

“Whoa,” Bracken said. “Where’s all this hostility coming from?”

“No more Mr. Nice Jim,” Jim said, tears threatening. “And no more fucking hugs, either. Robots are the future, and I built one. Respect my talent in the burgeoning field of robotics right now, Errick Danger Nunnally, or I will tell my PERFECT GODDAMN ROBOT to rip your arms off and jam them up your GODDAMN STUPID ASS!”

Jim, red-faced and nearly foaming at the mouth, didn’t wait for a response. He simply pointed at Errick, and shouted, “MAKE HIM HURT!”

Errick leaped back quickly, but it was already too late. Jordan—lurching forward, saying, “Danger, Errick Nunnally! Danger, danger, DANGER!” (long walk for a terrible joke)—grabbed both of Errick’s wrists and yanked as hard as its machinery would allow. This amount of force turned out to be more than sufficient. Errick’s arms popped out of their shoulder sockets, and a quick-spray jet of blood splashed out of both holes, soaking Bracken and Jim Tarantino-style.

“Bam!” Jim shouted, and clapped his hands together once very hard.

“Jesus fuck!” yelled Bracken.

“Ahhhhhhhhh, Chriiiiiiiiiiiist!!!!!!” intoned Errick, falling over, more blood pumping out of his sockets, soaking the grass where he fell.

Jordan then made good on the rest of Jim’s order, much to everyone’s vomitous dismay: pants down, bloody arms rammed in as far as they could go.

Lights out.

Best Necon ever.




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