"The heathen geeks, they wear no breeks," the Terrans sang. But on a crazy world like Ullr, clothes didn't make the fighting man. There both red and yellow meant danger--and blood!
and M'zangwe behind him.
There was another aircar, a dark maroon civilian job, at the curb; its native driver was slumped forward over the controls, a short crossbow-bolt sticking out of his neck. Backed against the closed door of a house, a Terran with white hair and a small beard was clubbing futilely with an empty pistol. He was wounded, and blood was streaming over his face. His companion, a young woman in a long fur coat, was laying about her with a native bolo-knife.
* * * * *
Von Schlichten's mace had a spiked ball-head, and a four-inch spike in front of that. He smashed the ball down on the back of one Ullran's head, and jabbed another in the rump with the spike.
"Zak! Zak!" he yelled, in pidgin-Ullran. "Jik-jik, you lizard-faced Creator's blunder!"
The Ullran whirled, swinging a blade somewhere between a big butcher-knife and a small machete. His mouth was open, and there was froth on his lips.
"Znidd suddabit!" he shrieked.
Quite a good shoot-em-up tale but with the usual Piper shortcoming when it comes to showing emotions. People die like flies, show great courage, fall in love and have babies yet the emotional level never so much as stirs the needle.
Needs a map, too.
This is the serialized version of "Uller Uprising", which appeared in Space Science Fiction in 1952. It's a novel written for an anthology published by Twayne Books as a "Twayne Triplet", based on an essay by Dr. John D. Clark postulating a world with intelligent life based on silicon instead of carbon.
It's set in Piper's Federation universe. Uller is colony world run by the Chartered Uller Company. The protagonists find themselves in the middle of a native uprising. The natives are silicon based hermaphrodite humanoids with four arms and a roughly early industrial revolution level of technology.
Piper uses the canvas to retell the Sepoy Rebellion in India in SF terms. It's not the best of his books (that honor probably goes to Little Fuzzy or Space Viking, also available here), but it's a brisk fairly enjoyable read.
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