Chapter 9
Illustration by Haylee Bolinger


Young adults vie for coveted citizenship on Deimos, the near-zero-gravity moon of Mars that has become a hub for innovation and interplanetary commerce. Competing in a series of challenges that blend science and creativity, contestants use neurochemicals to control their emotions and anxiety and ensure peak performance under the watchful eyes of Deimos citizens.

James L. Cambias is a science fiction writer and game designer. His first novel, A Darkling Sea, was published by Tor in 2014, and his new book Corsair came out in 2015. His stories have been featured in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, Nature, and several original anthologies. He is a cofounder of Zygote Games, designed Bone Wars: The Game of Ruthless Paleontology, and has written or contributed to more than a dozen tabletop role-playing game books.
  • Response to “Periapsis”

    Written by Alex MacDonald
    Economist, Civil and Commercial Space Divison, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

    I think the story is a really interesting analysis of how economic activity might evolve in the solar system. […] You have the emergence of diverse cultures that predominate in different environments. You have a distinct Mars culture and a very different Deimos culture. You also have a very interesting treatment of a different economic future for Earth…

  • Longer-Than-Lifetime-Projects

    Many institutions have lasted multiple lifetimes—religions, cities, universities, militaries, a very few corporations—and often that was the intent, but these were not beginning-middle-end projects. What is so worth building that multiple generations would feel inspired to bear down on it for lifetimes?

    – Stewart Brand

    Read the conversation >>

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