Cover image for


Author: Murray Leinster (William Fitzgerald Jenkins)
Published: 1919
Language: English
Wordcount: 3,113 / 9 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 87.8
LoC Category: PS
Audiobook: upload.librivox.org
Downloads: 3,536
Added to site: 2007.11.04
mnybks.net#: 18859

From All-Story Weekly, July 12, 1919.

Show Excerpt

n his skull, and my saddle burned my hand if I touched it where the sun struck it. There was a trickling stream of perspiration down either cheek, and a third stream down my nose. From time to time I smudged the dust across my face in an attempt to stop the streams, but the action merely interrupted their course.

It was in this peculiarly Texan atmosphere that I came upon Jimmy Calton.

He was standing by the open hood of one of those mechanical miracles known as a "tin lizzy," holding a sooted spark-plug in a cloth in one hand and attempting to clean it with the other. He was swearing the while, dispassionately, in a curious mingling of good Anglo-Saxon and 'dobe Spanish.

"Hello, Jimmy," I said listlessly.

He looked up and nodded.

"Say, you look hot," he observed. "Come on an' ride a ways with me. Lizzy heah'll be runnin' in a minute, an' you can tie yo' pony on behind."

"Going anywhere in particular?" I asked.

"Over t' see th' coroner," he told me. "Ol' Abe Martin got shot th' other day an' folks are say


Average Rating of 4 from 2 reviews: ****
Sardo Weems

Not a science fiction story, it's set near the border of Texas at the start of the 20th century. A coroner's inquest of a murder and robbery is going on in the dead man's house, and something seems too perfect.

There's lots of set-up at the start of the story and a satisfying ending.

Leah A. Zeldes

A very short story about the dangers of the truth. Nicely done.

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