The Fighter Pilot

a short short story
By James Nathan Post

Lt. "Snort" Norton relaxed in his chair and guided his robot jet to a target six thousand miles away, using his heads-up virtual reality screen to see through the plane's eyes. It was just like being there. His enemy were ragged men with rifles, guarding opium crops they sold to buy ammunition. He knew the money came from evil drug traffickers addicting his own country's people, and he was protecting them, so morally justified and motivated. There they were. He zoomed in until he could see their faces. "Gotcha," he said as he finished off his coffee. He put the target bogey right on them, selected his weapon, and hit the initiate button on his joystick. From far above, he released the bombs to kill the drug terrorists, and to seed their fields with deadly land mines, so nothing could be grown there, not for many years. Suddenly the building his control booth was in suffered a terrible shaking and collapsed around him, the result of an earthquake which crushed him instantly. Lt. Norton was declared to have been killed in action, and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross.

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A Science-Fiction Anthology.