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By Robert Silverberg

In the a long way destiny, Earth is a tired backwater and humanity is unfold around the galaxy on worlds that begun as colonies, yet now consider like domestic, each one with its personal lengthy historical past of one thousand years or extra, and every with its personal certain tradition. one of many strangest is on Borthan, the place the founding settlers verified the Covenant, which teaches that the self is to be despised, and forbids an individual to bare his innermost options or emotions to a different. On Borthan, the filthiest obscenities that you can imagine are the phrases “I” and “me.” For the heinous crime of “self-baring,” apostates have constantly paid with exile or demise, yet after his eyes are opened through a customer from Earth, Kinnall Darival, prince of Salla, hazards every thing to coach his humans the true which means of being human.

With a brand new advent via the writer, and the first-ever map of Borthan, this vintage, out of print on account that 1992, is a ravishing new addition to the Orb imprint.

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He set foot on the first step. A single deep clear note rolled across the canyon; the feeling of uneasiness swelled to an irrational dread. He could see that his men were infected with it. Resolutely he mounted the second step. Another and different tone echoed through the hills. He marched steadily up the long flight, his men following reluctantly. A slow, ponderous and infinitely tragic largo kept time to his labored steps, labored because the treads were just too broad and the lifts just too high for comfort.

Through the door he saw a vast empty hall and on the far side an altar, large in itself, but dwarfed by the mammoth proportions of the room. The inner walls shone, each with its own light, red, blue, green, golden. The ceiling was a perfect, flawless white, the floor an equally perfect black. There was nothing to be afraid of here, he told himself, this illogical but horribly real dread was a sickness, unworthy of a warrior. He stepped across the threshold. A momentary dizziness, a flash of terrifying insecurity and he collapsed.

Graciously, our prayer was answered. " Scheer, at the control board, picked this moment to increase the volume on the fourteen-cycle note. With nameless fear pressing his heart, confused, baffled, the lieutenant took the easy way out. He gathered his men about him and marched back down the broad flight of stairs, colossal organ music still following him in awful, inescapable accompaniment. "Well, that's that," Ardmore commented as the little group disappeared in the distance. "First round to God's chilluns.

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