Flash Fiction: Ro-Sham-Bot


by Effie Seiberg

ro-sham-bot-300Effie Seiberg is a science fiction and fantasy writer living in San Francisco, where she works as a tech consultant and makes cakes shaped like spaceships and facehuggers. Her short fiction can be found in Lightspeed‘s “Women Destroy Science Fiction” special issue, Galaxy’s Edge, and PodCastle, among others. Follow her on twitter at @effies, or check out her other stories at effieseiberg.com.


I found a robot’s heart today. I didn’t think they still made robots with hearts, but there it was, at the corner of Leary and Sycamore.

It even looked like a heart: size of a fist, valves pulsing with pale ching ching noises each time they opened and shut. The metal was old and worn. At the bottom I could just make out the words “If found, please return to the Akirobo Corp” with most of the address worn away.

I took it home and plugged it into my computer. It had a few jumbled videos—the way older robots used to store memories. My computer was old enough to be able to play them.

I sorted by number and began to watch.

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FSi-230-227wFantastic Stories of the Imagination
September–October 2015 #230

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You can view the Table of Contents and read excerpts from these stories here.

  • Fiction: “The Attic of Memories” by Sunil Patel — A bucket list with a life of its own.
  • Fiction: “I Miss Flowers” by Alexandra Grunberg— When living forever isn’t what it’s cracked up to be.
  • Fiction: “Elvis has Left the Building” by Dario Ciriello— The King was only the opening act.
  • Fiction: “Cartographer’s Ink” by Beth Cato — Conquering a map, literally.
  • Fiction: “Ro-Sham-Bot” by Effie Seiberg — What do you do with an old, obsolete robot’s heart?
  • Reviews: “The Fan: Virgin Ghosts, Virgin Priestesses, and Virgin Vampires” by Carole McDonnell — In this month’s column, Carole McDonnell reviews the American film A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night, the Korean series Oh My Ghostess!, the 2012 film Chanthaly directed by Mattie Do, the first female Laotian horror film maker, and Abengoni, Charles Saunders African-inspired sword and sorcery novel.
  • Reviews: “The Magic Lantern: Erasing the Origins” by Adam-Troy Castro— Adam-Troy Castro uses the Western as a model for what should and shouldn’t be done to cope with the modern comic book movie epidemic. Err. Renaissance! Full disclosure: A-T C writes comics, as well as other things, and his opinions are fascinating.
  • Reviews: “Area 51 1/2 September-October 2015” by Steven Sawicki — In this issue our resident Alien reviews novels by John Scalzi, Adam Christopher, John C. Wright, short fiction by Kelly Link, and the animated short THE OCEANMAKER, written and directed by Lucas Martell.
  • Reviews: “New & Noteworthy Short Genre Fiction: September-October 2015” by Gillian Daniels— Gillian reviews stories by C.S.E. Cooney, Jei D. Marcade, Arie Coleman, Sofia Samatar, and Charlie Jane Anders.

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