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By Alan Burt Akers

Booklet one of many Dray Prescot sequence. in the world Kregen that circles Antares, the brightest superstar of the Constellation of the Scorpion, forces contend for the world's future. one among them, the Savanti, referred to as in a human pawn from far-away Earth. His identify is Dray Prescot, and purely the Savanti understand his position. Dray Prescot faced a superb international -- barbaric, unmapped, peopled with either human and non-human races. yet there have been regularly the big name Lords to monitor and fee the Savanti's plans. And it quickly grew to become out that Dray Prescot himself needed to come to a decision that will switch him from a trifling pawn to a bolder piece at the planetary chessboard... (65000 phrases)

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The following they have been fashioning the software that will deliver the same point of happiness and luxury to all of the international. I observed their papermills and watched because the pulp progressively replaced via their whirring spinning equipment into soft velvety paper, appealing inventory, healthy to commemorate the loftiest phrases within the language. yet there has been a secret connected to their paper manufacture. I accrued that on yes occasions throughout the yr they dispatched caravans of paper which might locate its approach far and wide Kregen. however the paper used to be clean, virginal, ready to be written on. I sensed the key the following; yet couldn't fathom it. Very quickly i used to be instructed to arrange for the baptism. i exploit the English observe because the nearest corresponding to the Kregish, proceeding no blasphemy. Very early we set out, Maspero, 4 different tutors whom I now knew and beloved, and their 4 applicants. We took a galley which pulled progressively up the opposite river, now not the Aph however the Zelph. The oarsmen laughed and joked as their brawny hands pulled. I had mentioned slavery with Maspero and located in him an analogous deep hatred of that ignoble establishment as burned in me. one of the oarsmen I well-known the guy who had requested Maspero if he have been looking the graint. I had myself taken my flip on the oars, feeling the muscular tissues throughout my again slipping into commonly used energy traces as I pulled. Slavery used to be one of many associations of Kregen that the Savanti needs to wishes swap in the event that they have been to meet their venture. We pulled as a long way up the River Zelph as shall we after which transferred to a longboat pulled through we all in flip. I had visible no outdated males or girls, no ill or crippled, in Aphrasöe, and everybody took a contented hand on the such a lot menial of initiatives. The galley became again, with the women on the tiller waving till we have been out of sight among craggy grey partitions. The water rushed prior. It used to be of a deep plum colour, really in contrast to that of its sister river Aph. the 10 folks pulled opposed to the present. We then went via rapids, portering the boat, and pressed on. Maspero and the opposite tutors held tools that exposed themselves to be of effective energy. an enormous spider-like beast leaped from a rock to bar our approach. I stared rigidly at it—and Maspero lightly leveled his weapon; a silvery mild issued from the muzzle that quietened the monster till we have been prior. It clicked its jaws at us, its nice eyes clean and adversarial; however it couldn't circulation. i don't imagine even the technological know-how of Earth can but reproduce that peaceable victory over brute strength. one of many applicants was once a lady, of a transparent solid of function with lengthy darkish hair, now not unprepossessing yet certainly not an exceptional good looks. We driven on, passing many awful risks that have been quelled by way of the silvery fireplace of the tutors. eventually we reached a usual amphitheater within the rock the place the river plunged down in a cataract that was once a depressing imitation of the only over which I had plunged at the Aph; yet which was once however of substantial dimension. the following we entered a cave. This was once the 1st underground position I were on Kregen.

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