Havok Publishing

Tag - robots

Structural Edits

I’ve been caught.
No, only Meg noticed.
I reach for a new binder of case files. That inconsequential proofreader knows better than to report my errors.
Pen in hand, I skim the first file, spotting the typo underlined in red. Before I can process the information, the tech in my brain corrects any trace…

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Super Gus, Do You Copy

The glass roof of the museum’s atrium shatters, and I duck behind a pillar. Twenty-three rotund robots rappel through the jagged opening on extensible steel arms. Riding atop the center bot is a short, pudgy man in a purple-and-green-striped lab coat. Frizzy orange curls encircle his bald scalp like clouds around a shiny mountaintop.

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Proofreader

Typos are proof of humanity.
The Typo Alliance slogan fills my mind as I park and slip a file from my purse. I tap my glasses twice, activating the scanner to illuminate data.
TYPO: NEW ECLECTIC GRID POWERS LOCAL WAREHOUSE
ASSIGNED: AGENT BRODY HIGGINS
CONCLUSION: NO FOLLOW-UP REQUIRED
I snap the file shut. Brody might

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The Pancake Maker

“Are you still working on that thing?” Mauldin shoved a handful of popcorn into his mouth and eyed the hunk of metal parts his brother was attempting to jimmy rig together.
“Yep.” Pablo paused and tilted his head. Pursuing his lips, he bent his head the other way. After a moment, his face

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Fergus-19

I rushed to kick our jackets out of the way as Gran stepped through the front door. “Come in, Gran! Sorry about the mess.” I flushed. I had given this same apology every Friday night for ages.
I thought this might be the week we’d conquer the layers of detritus cluttering our apartment.

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The Price of Metal

Lykaina slid the box across the desk with a gentle smile. “A gift from the marshes of Hecate.”
Mr. Collins opened the lid and inhaled deeply. His eyes drifted closed. “Fresh cranberries. Marvelous.”
“Perhaps not the bounty one would receive from Demeter…” Lyka spread her hands. “But we share what is ours.”

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Before and After

The ball of light splits the forest in two, bouncing heat and ash off the canopy all the way down into the damp undergrowth. Where bits of debris alight on a rare dry patch, the underlying fungal layer, with sodden indifference, snuffs them out in a puff of smoke. A wide flat piece,

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Preserving Peace

Adam observed the flock of pigeons. The whole time he’d been sitting on the rusted park bench, seeds disappeared around only one. The real pigeon ate the seeds he threw at it; the drones just pecked at the ground.
A few drone birds took flight. Adam glanced at his watch. Right on schedule.

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A Glint of Silver

Lyle bit his lip, heart pounding as he scanned the waters for any sign of police boats or security. This trip was a stupid idea. Why had he even agreed to return? He knew the dangers.
Flustered, he ripped the sunglasses from his face and rubbed his burning eyes. Foolish sentiment had clouded

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Farmer, Inventor, Goat

If only that blasted goat hadn’t eaten the time machine.
Inventor and his brother, Farmer, hadn’t spoken a word between them since. Plus, the stupid goat blipped to the Renaissance every time it hiccupped for a solid month. That afternoon snack had ruined everything…
Inventor shook his head, staring out the workshop’s high

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The Good Boy

When Rosco opened his eyes for the first time and saw the old man smiling back at him, all operational parameters pointed to one thing: it was going to be a happy life.
His performance diodes peaked under the kindly gaze and the feedback-response loop set his chain-link tail thumping uncontrollably against

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Closure

Closure.
Ha.
I’m here by doctor’s orders. The last place I want to see is Death’s Curve. I despise every stick, every inch of pavement, every pebble along this road. You’d hate seeing where your daughter died too.
This is the sort of place teenagers used to go to neck when I was younger.

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