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Masters of the Trading Game

A Science Fiction short story by Jim Cline

Cover design by Paul Adams

Smashwords Edition

Copyright © 2009 J. E. D. Cline


Masters of the Trading Game

The engine of the little aircraft he had rented had suddenly quit, and soon stalled, now heading rapidly toward the rough terrain below. He had a toolkit which quickly showed him that the engine had quit because its flight controller had been sent a signal by an airport ground control that the plane had landed and was to shut the engine down and let the passenger out. Unable to change the instruction to the autopilot, he activated his suit's buoyancy control, needed to live on this heavy gravity planet, set to a negative average weight, opened the door and jumped out. The plane sped downward past him; moments later it hit the ground, splattering pieces all over the mountainside. Reaching the ground, he adjusted his average weight for some traction, and bounded lightly across the terrain. Reaching the wreckage, he retrieved his luggage and lightly bounded away to a place that provided concealment; yet he was able to view the wreckage. Soon a helicopter arrived out of nowhere in this desolate place, and it squirted a stream of liquid fuel all over the wreckage, ignited it; hovered awhile to watch the inferno, then flew off.

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