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Elephant\'s Graveyard

Elephant's Graveyard

And Other Sci-Fi Stories
A collection of stories by

Elephant's Graveyard And Other Science Fiction Stories

This volume consists of three science-fiction novelettes by David Alexander and Hayford Peirce that were originally published in Analog Magazine as follows:

Finder's Fee April 1997 - 17,420 words
Elephant's Graveyard March 1999 - 17,680 words
Best Of Breed December 1994 - 12,750 words
Total: 47,850 words

Finder's Fee and Elephant's Graveyard are related stories. The principal character in each is Isaiah Howe, the one-time youngest Senior Facilitator in the history of Human Occupied Space. Unfortunately, Howe has fallen on hard times. When we first meet him he's making a living as a neophyte star-freighter captain with little more to his name than a highly mortgaged spaceship, the Venture. In spite of his great intellect, Howe is struggling to survive by delivering valuable cargos to outlying planets while still accepting the occasional consulting contract that his unique abilities qualify him to fulfill. These stories detail two of those situations, one on the desert planet, New Sonora, and the second on a world populated by a race of huge, organic blimps.

Naturally, nothing goes smoothly, even for a multipath like Isaiah Howe.

The last story, Best Of Breed, explores the question of what happens when an advanced civilization meets a more primitive one. In this case the aliens are the smart guys and the human race is cast in the role of the savages. Of course, unlike the Incas and American Indians, the humans know that the aliens are far more advanced than they are, and, looking at the history of the Europeans' interaction with the New World's native peoples, they know what mankind's fate in this interchange is likely be. In the days leading up to the first formal meeting between the two races, the challenge for the humans is to find a way to reverse the equation. If only there were a way to make humans smarter, really, really fast.

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