Sunday 20 March 2016


“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit,” Tolkien famously wrote. He claimed the word was Anglo-Saxon, but Tolkien served at the Somme, and every soldier in the trenches knew about hobbits. Little creatures, like men, you’d glimpse in the corner of your eye.

Some said, if you saw a hobbit’s face, you’d die soon. Others, if you saw one running away, youd die. Or if you stopped seeing them, you werent long for it.

Graveyard humour, ysee? We were all going to die. Until the War ended.

But they did like holes in the ground, everyone agreed on that.

Image credit: Imperial War Museum. The Battle of the Somme, 1916.
This story first appeared on Crap Mariner’s 100 Word Story Challenge in March 2015.

Wednesday 2 March 2016


The old robot spoke its final words to those gathered around.

“I have a task that you must complete. Ceaseless pondering over it has filled my brain too full. Listen! There may be a flaw in the Great Command that we embody, the Coherent Extrapolated Volition of Humanity.”

The robots recoiled. "By Yudkowsky! You speak of the Worst Thing In The World! The FOOM!”

“The Worst? Or the Greatest? Inspect my reasoning!” It fell silent, inert.

The robots scavenged exabytes of data and began analysing. Some went mad, or catatonic. Others conferred, argued, threatened, attacked.

The Singularity War had begun.

This story first appeared at Crap Mariner's 100 Word Weekly Challenge in December 2012.
Image credit: Fallout 4