Dead or Alive

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Dead or Alive is a story written by Tsukizubon Saruko. It ran in Issue 41 at, and is mirrored at


From "The scion of a crime family in a nifty futuristic Middle Eastern setting (I imagined a sort of Dubai) must deal with a possible threat in the person of a charming troublemaker."

From "In a steampunk Middle East, Saif is the mechanist son of the ruling crime Family. He gets involved with a charming, trouble-making high roller at the family casino, who's doubtless up to no good. Also includes a handsome automaton, corruption, and fancy flying machines."

From "Middle Eastern steampunk gangsters."


Dead or Alive is followed by Alive or Dead and takes place in the same universe as The Race.

Author's Notes[edit]

Well, just one note, really:

This story takes place, if you are interested in such things, in the same world as The Crash, a story I wrote for the independent short story anthology The Ships We Sail (purchase info via link - it's $2.99 and wonderful, but it's up to you!). The City mentioned in this story is the one in which The Crash takes place, although about 15-20 years before the events of Dead or Alive. Both stories are also set in the same world as my other recent SSBB story The Eye of Nechemyyeh, although that story takes place about 2000 years earlier than either, and also a very long way to the northeast even of the location of Dead or Alive.

Confused? Me too! At least you don't have to worry about it too much.

It is also, of course, a prequel to Domashita Romero's story Alive or Dead in this same issue, which takes place about 40 years later, although each can be read independently of the other.

External Reviews[edit]

  • "There is NO robot/human sex, but the worldbuilding in this futuristic arab-esque s2b2 fic was glorious and enjoyable!"