Old Thaddeus McIlvaine discovered a dark star and took it for his own. Thus he inherited a dark destiny—or did he?
eemed, before he knew his contact had been closed. Guru came through.
"Are you ready, McIlvaine?" he asked soundlessly.
"Yes. All ready," said McIlvaine, trembling with eagerness.
"Don't be alarmed now. It will take several hours," said Guru.
"I'm not alarmed," answered McIlvaine.
And indeed he was not; he was filled with an exhilaration akin to mysticism, and he sat waiting for what he was certain must be the experience above all others in his prosaic existence.
* * * * *
"McIlvaine's disappearance coming so close on Richardson's gave us a beautiful story," said Harrigan. "The only trouble was, it wasn't new when the Globe got around to it. We had lost our informant in Richardson; it never occurred to Alexander or Leopold to telephone us or anyone about McIlvaine's unaccountable absence from Bixby's. Finally, Leopold went over to McIlvaine's house to find out whether the old fellow was sick.
"A young fellow opened up.
Not a bad story. An old codger makes contact with an alien world, except no one believes him. They give him technology to change his life, and when he uses it . . . .
Nothing profound here, but the character of the old man is good, and everything holds together until the end. It works as a yarn.
2013 SFR GALAXY AWARD WINNER
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