What will happen when the alien ships strike Earth? And later? Who will survive? What will life be like in that latter-day jungle? William F. Nolan, well known in SF circles on the West Coast, returns with this grim story of the days and the nights of Lewis Stillman—survivor ...
Lewis Stillman paused before a dim hand-lettered sign: MEDICAL SECTION. It was just as he had remembered it. Holstering the small automatic, he struck a match, shading the flame with a cupped hand as he moved it along the rows of faded titles. Carter ... Davidson ... Enright ... Erickson. He drew in his breath sharply. All three volumes, their gold stamping dust-dulled but readable, stood in tall and perfect order on the shelf.
In the darkness, Lewis Stillman carefully removed each volume, blowing it free of dust. At last all three books were clean and solid in his hands.
Well, you've done it. You've reached the books and now they belong to you.
He smiled, thinking of the moment when he would be able to sit down at the table with his treasure, and linger again and again over the wonderous pages.
He found an empty carton at the rear of the store and placed the books inside. Returning to the stairs, he shouldered the rifle and began his descent to the lower floor
A nice little cat and mouse chase story with a great ending.
What starts as relatively standard fare, 50's sci-fi packs an interesting twist. Short stories like this area almost always worth the minimal time reader's must inveeset, this is no exception.
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