Saturday, June 18, 2016

Release Blitz: Stupid Humans by VR Craft

What if all the intelligent humans abandoned Earth... and we're what's left?

Samantha is a journalist who travels through the wormhole to New Atlantis and discovers that embarrassing reality when she meets the People, humanity's more intelligent—and smugly superior—distant relatives. Unfortunately, thanks to humanity’s penchant for fighting, a Human/People conflict is brewing. She could almost forget she's not on Earth, except the People have tails and don't slap idiot warning labels on everything.

Plagued by anti-Human sentiment on New Atlantis and unwilling to return to Earth, Samantha moves to the Five Alpha, the space station closest to the wormhole, where Human—and People—stupidity lurks around every corner. Then the conflict worsens, causing concern for the security of the wormhole—and its closest neighbor. Naturally, politicians from both sides decide they can provide a diplomatic solution by holding peace talks on the station.

When sabotage puts both Five Alpha and her only route back to Earth in jeopardy, everyone blames Samantha—including a manipulative politician with her own agenda—forcing her to fight to uncover who is plotting to destroy the wormhole and cut off Human/People relations for good. Can she find a way to save the wormhole—and her sanity—before it's too late?

"Are you sure you want to do this?" Anderson asked an hour later, as Brad sat on a cold examination table and waited to get even colder.

"I'm positive. Put me in cryo right now. You have my instructions." Brad shoved the signed consent form and travel order back at the doctor. Could Anderson tell he was terrified his plan wouldn't work and not at all sure he wanted to do this?

Anderson stared at him for a moment and finally took the pad. "You know...." He ambled back to the row of cryocans. "You still have a few minutes to reconsider."

"I've made my decision."

"But what if your girlfriend doesn't follow you in? Are you sure you want to go to Eart, a planet you've never visited before, by yourself, in the current political climate?"

Brad took a deep breath. "She's only refusing to go back because she doesn't want me to leave my home for her. Once I'm in cryo, and you can't wake me up or take me off the ship, she'll join me."

"You're sure of that?" Anderson pushed buttons on the nearest can. Samantha called those things coffins, and suddenly Brad saw the resemblance- it did look like a sleek, white coffin with blinking lights. He'd never been in cryo before, and despite everything he'd read about how safe it was, the prospect of spending months in that thing was  a little nerve-wracking. But cryosleep was necessary to protect travelers from the potentially damaging physiological effects of traveling through a wormhole, and a trip through the Divide was necessary to get to Earth. Besides, cryo had been used safely for years, and he had nothing to worry about.

Screw that, as Samantha liked to say. He was terrified.

"I'm sure," he said with as much confidence he could fake.

"Her reasoning, as you've described it, sounds right." Anderson unlocked the narc box and removing a dose of anesthetic, which he slapped into a port at one end of the cryocan. "But there are a few problems."

"Problems? What do you mean?" Brad swallowed, his throat dry.

"You know she had her medchip locked, right? And the only restriction she put on it was no cryosleep?"

"She did what? Why would she do that?"

Anderson shrugged, leaned against the can, and stroked his chin. "You know the usual reasons people restrict a medchip, but nobody puts a cryo lock on it for moral or religious reasons. It can't be construed as hurting anyone else, and you still have a heartbeat- even if it is extremely slow- so you're not technically dead. People feel much more secure about their beliefs in the afterlife when they don't have to come back from the dead."

"Then why?" Brad gripped the table. The whole world was falling away from him, and they were still under AG.

"Well, I really can't speculate. But, you know, some people do."

There was only one other reason a person might have a no-cryo lock. "You mean she might have pissed someone off? Like a criminal who might want to put her out of commission for an extended period of time without actually committing murder?"

"Some people place cryo restrictions for that reason. Your girlfriend is a journalist- like you, right?"

Brad frowned. "Uh, yes. But she writes features about seeing this place from the Human perspective. She doesn't cover crime."

"Again, I can't speculate." Anderson shuffled over to his desk, where he stared down at a data pad for a moment. "I probably shouldn't tell you this, because it's confidential- sort of like what I just told you- but it does affect the treatment you're about to choose for yourself, so I'm making an exception. And I didn't tell you any of this."

"Of course. What is it?" He had no idea Samantha had so many secrets. What now?

"She placed that restriction on her medchip five years ago, shortly after she arrived here from Earth. That means she was damn sure she didn't want to go back a long time before she met you."

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