After the Collapse
Paul Di Filippo
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Frank Lazorg's gone mad! The dean of the fantasy art illustrators has reached his end: his creative powers have deserted him.
Then a strange new drug promises to reinvigorate him, both as man and artist. But the substance soon results in madness, plunging Frank into a world inhabited by monstrous parodies of humanity. Yet this new dimension has its own delights, as Frank soon discovers when he meets the female alien called Crutchsump!
A science fiction adventure of mind and body. AFTER THE COLLAPSE: STORIES FROM GREENHOUSE EARTH, by Paul Di Filippo. From the swarming redoubts of the polar regions, where humanity huddles from the savage heat of Greenhouse Earth, to the dusty refugee camps of a shattered America, here are six riveting tales of life during the hard-luck times of a post-holocaust planet.
wardens regrouped off to one side and consulted quietly among themselves. “Any explosion of this magnitude in the tropospheric mind would do no more damage than a conventional rain squall,” said Cimabue. “Agreed,” said Chellapilla. “But what if the explosion was meant to disperse some kind of contaminant carried as cargo?” “Such as?” asked Tanselle. “No suitably dangerous substance occurs to me at the moment,” Sylvanus said, stroking his chin whiskers. “Nonetheless,” cautioned Pertinax, “I
behind her, causing her to squeal. Maddened by the sound, Pertinax broke free and hurled himself at one of the gun-bearers. But a rifle stock connected with his skull, and he knew only blackness. When Pertinax awoke, night had fallen. He found himself with limbs bound, lying in a cage improvised from thick branches rammed deep into the soil and lashed together. He struggled to rise, and thus attracted the attentions of his fellow captives. Similarly bound, Chellapilla squirmed across the grass
felt myself on Benno’s side. But when he gave me that order in his know-it-all way, I instantly rebelled. All the years of growing up together, with him always the favored one, stuck in my throat. “Like hell! We’re just doing what’s good for the planet in the fastest way possible. Los Braceros must have studied everything better than you. You’re just a kid like me!” Benno looked at me calmly with his stoney face. “I am a Master Class Steward, and you are not.” “Well, Mr. Master Class Steward,
such an affectation before, for fear of ridicule by her peers. But now that she had cut loose from her old life, nothing seemed more natural than to talk this way. “I appreciate the sentiment, little lady.” The man extended his hand. “Bib Bogardus is the name, and I hail from Pine Mountain, Georgia. What’s yourn?” “Amy Gertslin.” “Pleased to meet you, Amy.” Bib lowered his bulk precariously into a seat at her table. “Now, just call me a nosy nelly if I’m stepping on any toes with my curiosity,
the demon is at your door/In the morning it won’t be there no more/Any major dude will tell you.” —Paul Di Filippo Providence, Rhode Island 11 July 2011 LIFE IN THE ANTHROPOCENE 1. Solar Girdle Emergency Aurobindo Bandjalang got the emergency twing through his vib on the morning of August 8, 2121, while still at home in his expansive bachelor’s digs. At 1LDK, his living space was three times larger than most unmarried individuals enjoyed, but his high-status job as a Power Jockey for