Outcasts of a society of physically perfect people, they couldn't stay and they couldn't go home again—yet there had to be some escape for them. Oddly enough, there was!
e to. Medicine, I'm sure, is no exception." He paused thoughtfully. "Now, there are three separate gravital units on the asteroid. One runs for forty-five minutes while the other two are idle. Then it cuts off and another takes over. This is supposed to be synchronized. I don't have to tell you that it isn't. You felt your weight increase suddenly at the same time I did. What is wrong?"
"Nothing wrong," said the engineer. "That's what you get with gravital."
"You mean they're supposed to run that way? Overlapping so that for five minutes we have Earth or Earth-and-a-half gravity and then none?"
"It's not supposed to be that way," said Vogel. "But nobody ever built a setup like this that worked any better." He added defensively: "Of course, if you want, you can check with the company that makes these units."
"I'm not trying to challenge your knowledge, and I'm not anxious to make myself look silly. I have a sound reason for asking these questions. There is a possibility of
In the future, as medical science advanced to the point where all imperfections could be corrected, any remnant of a body could be kept alive and repaired. The problem was that people badly damaged in accidents couldn't be made whole again--just kept alive. Those people frightened pets and children and made the perfect adults uncomfortable.
They had to go. They were banished to a domed asteroid--Handicap Haven. (Sorry, but the story is from 1952, when the only politically correct terms were calling liberals and pacifists Reds and fellow-travellers.)
But the partial people believed they could combine with one another to help humanity in ways the perfect people couldn't. But they wouldn't be allowed to try. So they stole a rocket.
An interesting and convoluted story, with several good characters and a couple of twists. And the hero never says a word.
An interesting sci-fi read and a glimpse of what our future might hold if society continues to follow the "mainstream" idea of "beauty". With interesting characters, good plot line and a happy ending I reccomend this book to any sci-fi fan.
2013 SFR GALAXY AWARD WINNER
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