Three flying saucers
Although I didn’t give this story my highest rating, I don’t have anything negative to say about it. It is well written and has interesting characters; I wish I could produce something of this quality. My only problem is with the category/placement; I need more “sci” in a story to call it sci-fi. I would call this story urban fantasy or paranormal.
The main character is a sort of government contractor. He has the ability to drain days of a person’s lifespan into himself, and then to pass those days of life on to other people. He drains people who are dying in the hospital and can’t pay their debts, and contributes to people the government deems worthy: researchers, business leaders, etc. He gets to keep a percentage of the days for himself as a collection fee. One of the most interesting aspects of the story is how he gets a rush of energy and vitality when he drains others, and hits a depressive low when he passes days onward.
The main character has a little computer built into his hand to track the days flowing in and out, but to me that wasn’t enough “sci”. The premise of days being an identical commodity for trading between people struck me as too magical. If the story had been about organ or stem cell harvesters, or a machine that could suck mitochondria out of a person’s cells, or something else that sounded more biological, then I would have been on board, but perhaps the story would have suffered. Maybe my argument is a little unfair since I wouldn’t make similar remarks about a sci-fi story with a faster than light spaceship; I guess my brain just sees transportation getting faster throughout history and expects the trend to continue.
If you don’t require your sci-fi to be “hard” style, you’ll probably enjoy this story.