Episode 107: Must Have Own Weapons by Edward McKeown

When the wombat comes, he’ll find me gone.
Dan Coulter has lost his girlfriend, and cannot find anything to look forward to in life any further. He’s considering putting an end to it once and for all. At that moment, with gun in hand, he sees a rather unusual want ad. The only caveat? Whoever responds to this ad must be able to bring their own weapons. Well, at least Dan can fill that part of the ad, right?

Afterward, Big and Rish talk about Neanderthal accents, the BBC series “Doctor Who,” as well as waxing poetic about time travel once again.

Special thanks to Marshal Latham for producing today’s story, and Julie Hoverson for lending her voice to today’s episode.

Right click HERE to download the episode, select Save Link As, and save the file to your hard drive.


Related Links:
Edward McKeown’s SFWA site and his SFReader site.
Journey Into… Podcast
Marshal Latham’s Swamp Stories
Marshal Latham’s Blog
Julie Hoverson’s 19 Nocturne Boulevard.
Photo by Joseph Nicolia.
Music was No Clemency by Trust No One, Africa by Peppe Ska, Goodbye Father_ My Destiny by Brandon K. Guttenfelder, Intro and Lost in Circles by Spectral.
Some sound effects were provided by freesound.org.
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License


14 Responses to “Episode 107: Must Have Own Weapons by Edward McKeown”

  1. I am glad you guys liked the production of this one! I had a lot of fun doing it. Other than “The Alarm”, I also produced “Out of The Storm” and “Anakoinosis”, so I have had other opportunities to practice. I learn a little more with each story. I may drop on the forum to talk more about the production.

    But as to the story, I really liked it. I have to admit that the beginning kind of turned me off a bit, just a young ex-soldier drowning in his sorrows and telling us how intimidating he was. But from the phone call on, the story built on itself and by the end was quite riveting, and even moving.

  2. L'Androide Says:

    If you’re curious, the professor lives in Chelmsford, Mass. I can tell by the area code and first 3. Helps that I also live there.

  3. LOVED this episode. Great story. Super production, Marshal! I also found it incredible that even the Neanderthal timeline has a Sean Connery ;-)

  4. I hate time travel crap most of the time, but this kicked ass.

  5. You guys compared this story to Dr. Who. Not bad but I thought immediately of the TV show Sliders (1995-2000). They had a story line about and alternate time line where the Kromaggs (cro-magnon, get it) dominated and wanted to conquer human timelines.

  6. Neanderthal’s outcompete humans and modernize timeline is a better here than the Cro-Mags from Sliders.

    It’s an interesting chrono-menace, and I’m glad you chose this story.

    If you are interested in this sort of chronological warfare, you might want to check out the roleplaying sourcebook GURPS: INFINITE WORLDS – which has essentially the modern day earth fighting with a ultra-utilitarian rationalist society called the Centrum to manipulate the sociological and technological developments of other parallel worlds (“worldlines”) than their own.

    An earlier version of this involving more timehopping about on the various worldlines was “23 Skidoo”, which had Ming Chinese, Nazis, and others also competing to alter the timelines of the other parallel worlds to replicate their ideal societies.

    Also, on forums: they don’t have the same opportunity for hit and run and shallow commentation as much as reply areas like see. See: Escapepod. They disabled comments for shallow controversy and trolling after a while and led to focusing on their forum, which generates a lot of commentary.

    If you can bypass the initial hump of needing people to register and start checking it, people can become more into commenting when there are forums rather than just reply sections.

    And Rish managed to rally his dangerously Scottish neanderthal accent into something more unidentifiable halfway through the chrono-hunter’s death dialog.

  7. I don’t normally care for time travel in general. It’s so rarely done well, and even when it’s done well, it doesn’t end up interesting to me.

    This was a fun story; it basically just handwaved away all the inherent logical problems of time travel, which I can empathize with, and the plotline was interesting once we got past the maudlin opening (and thank goodness we didn’t end up going back in time to fix his relationship, because sweet merciful Lord have I read that story too many times). The sounds and production were indeed excellent, so well done all around.

    I’m amused by how many time travel stories are gummed up by the recent discovery that suggests Neanderthals bred with humans before fading away. I’m less amused by the sort of divine right this story posits for our species, right down to the dying member of the “inferior race” crowning them rulers, having been defeated. (Echoes of the less savory Kipling-esque stories there, with manifest destiny and all that. At least there wasn’t a white man’s burden, too.)

  8. Gentleman – finally! How long have we been telling you you needed forums? 2 years? 3? :D Anyway, glad you caved.

    Also, congrats on totally hogging the short story category in the Parsecs! Rock on.

  9. Thanks for all the kind comments it means a lot
    Edward McKeown

  10. This episode “sparked” an evening of family fun! I was listening to old episodes on my ipod, and when I heard Big talking about lighting a dandelion on fire. I stopped the ipod immediately, gathered my 12-year-old son and a lighter and went out into the yard–that has been desperately needed to be cut, so is full of white dandelions. It also happened to be dusk. Too cool. :) When we came in and told my husband, he had to take it to the next level and went out with a butane torch–it worked, too, needless to say. Way too much fun.

  11. Nathan Lough Says:

    Wow, I loved this story! A great pulp adventure. Well-read and wll-written. The shock of finding out who the shooter was really woke me up. I had been expecting rival scientists, or other future baddies, or a personal vendetta against the explorer. I was quite surprised.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: