Poor Henry was an unhappy husband whose wife had a habit of using bad clichès. Alféar was a genii who was, quite like most humans, a creature of habit. Their murder compact was absolutely perfect, with—No Strings Attached
reature seemed to be quite sincere. Henry considered it briefly, staring at a large tinted picture of Emma, and took the plunge. "Suppose I asked you to kill my wife for me--say by what looked like a stroke, so nobody would blame me?"
"That seems reasonable enough," Alféar agreed easily. "I could break a few blood vessels inside her skull.... Sure, why not? Only the picture in your mind is so distorted, I wouldn't know her. If she's like that, why'd you ever marry her?"
"Because she seemed different from other women, I guess," Henry admitted. "When I tipped the canoe over, and I figured she'd be mad because her dress was ruined, all she said was something about not being sugar, so she wouldn't melt." He shuddered, remembering all the times she'd said it since. "You won't have any trouble. Look, can you really read my mind?"
"Naturally. But it's all disorganized."
"Umm. Well." It gave him a queasy feeling to think of anyone seeing his secret thoughts. But this fellow apparent
A mildly funny short story that explains away nicely magic, demons, and geniis. The characters are barely there, with the demon Alfear having the most depth.
It's a pulp entertainment.
I read this a wile ago but, after stumbling upon it again, I remember enough to review it. In fact, the fact that I remember it so well speaks for itself. A very good book with realistic characters and a surprise at the end. Four stars.
Liked it well enough.
Lester del Rey is a good author and this story is classic del Rey