Friday, December 19, 2008

Slan, 1940

Slan by A. E. van Vogt, published in 1940 in Astounding Science Fiction.

His mother’s hand felt cold, clutching his.

Her fear, as they walked hurriedly along the street, was a quiet, swift pulsation that throbbed from her mind to his. A hundred other thoughts beat against his mind, from the crowds that swarmed by on either side, and from inside the buildings they passed. But only his mother’s thoughts were clear and coherent-and afraid.

‘They’re following us, Jommy,’ her brain telegraphed. ‘They’re not sure, but they suspect. Somebody reported us, and our house has already been raided. Jommy, if the worst comes, you know what to do. We’ve practiced it often enough. And, Jommy, don’t be afraid, don’t lose your head. You may be only nine years old, but a nine-year-old slan is as intelligent as any fifteen-year-old human being. Don’t be afraid, no matter what happens.’

Read A. E. van Vogt's Slan online

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