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reV

The Third Machine Dynasty
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Afterlife Crisis
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“Zeus,” I said, once the dust had settled, the chickens had hatched, and the chips had fallen where they may. “I don’t mind telling you that, while we were still in the thick of it, and before the happy endings were strewn about with a lavish hand, there were moments when I felt things mightn’t end so fright- fully well. One might even say that Rhinnick Feynman, though no weakling, came within a whisker of despair.”

 

“No kidding,” said the honest fellow.

 

“I mean, one couldn’t say that peril didn’t loom. It loomed like the dickens. The tortured Napoleons, the corrupted ancients, the bone-chilling brushes with matrimony, not to mention the even graver threat of—”

 

But wait. I’ve gone off the rails. Eager to bring my public up to speed on current events, I’ve shot off the mark like a scalded cat and left the readership befogged. It’s a snag I often come up against when starting a story, viz, the dashed difficult business of where to begin. No doubt you’ve found yourself in the same sand trap. I mean, if you bung in too much explanatory chit- chat at the starting gate, establishing what is known as “atmo- sphere,” or sorting out who begat whom all the way back to the primordial soup, you fail to grip. You see your readers, if any, stifling yawns and reshelving the book before you can say “what ho?” Yet if you spring off the bat at a couple of hundred mph, without supplying the merest whiff of expositional what- nots, you leave your public at a loss and yelling for footnotes. And it now occurs to me that, in opening the tale of present interest with the above slice of dialogue, I have made the sec- ond of these two floaters, failing altogether to set the stage for the super-sticky affair involving Zeus, Isaac Newton, Nappy, Vera Lantz, Dr. Everard M. Peericks, and the Napoleon who had lately taken to calling himself “Jack” — a tale which my biographers will probably call “Rhinnick and the Newtonian Horror,” or possibly “Feynman Conquers Science.” But by whatever name the affair is called, after taking all in all and weighing this against that, I suppose that it’s best to begin this story at the inception of my quest, if inceptions are the things I’m thinking of, and describe events in a roughly chronological order, allowing readers to string along and draw such character- strengthening lessons as they might from their perusal of my adventures. And so we begin, as it were, at the beginning. Let me marshal my facts, weigh anchor, and shove off.

 

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Love after the End

Love after the End

An Anthology of Two-Spirit and Indigiqueer Speculative Fiction
edition:Paperback
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