Stocks and Futures by John Visclosky

“—As you know, the program uses a combination of advanced geometry and quantum computing to respond quickly to market shifts and improve the firm’s pricing of derivatives. It’s also been enormously helpful in the area of risk analysis—”

Sitting at his desk, listening to the young programmer speak, Matt shook his head slowly. As usual, he had no idea what the lanky quant was trying to tell him.

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A Few Billion Leaves by Thomas Howarth

Is it worth your lives? his father had asked him – repeatedly. Your lives? A bullet for a few billion leaves?

Well, he’d never understood it.

No, that’s not fair; he understood it perfectly well. That’s precisely why he feared.

He’d never come out to the settlement. Laisa asked, with deliberate frequency, why he never visited.

Because he’s afraid, Felipe explained.

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Apotheosis by Simon Levick

The fork in the display case glinted under the lights.  It rested on a shiny black plastic podium, and impaled on its tines was what appeared to be a human finger.  He was pleased with the finger and gave a grunt of satisfaction.  It was his own finger, pinkie of the left hand, plaster cast thereof.  Title of work: give/take/eat.  Listed in the catalogue as item no. 17, price £6,000.

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