In language translation, you may get a literally accurate word-for-word translation ... but miss the meaning entirely. And in space-type translation ... the effect may be the same!
There was a stir. "But you can find it again," the Ruler said.
"I can," Korvin said.
"And you will tell us about it?" the Ruler went on.
"I will," Korvin said, "so far as I am able."
"We will wish to know about weapons," the Ruler said, "and about plans and fortifications. But we must first know of the manner of decision on this planet. Is your planet joined with others in a government or does it exist alone?"
Korvin nearly smiled. "Both," he said.
An agent for the Interstellar Union is sent to a newly discovered planet with a highly efficient, logical, scientifically brilliant race that is on the verge of spaceflight and has atomic weapons. His mission is to subvert their incursion into space and keep them on their planet. His attempt is amusing.
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