Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Howard L Myers' "The Reluctant Weapon" (short story, space opera, free)

Quote from short story titled The Reluctant Weapon by Howard L Myers, originally published in the Galaxy magazine, December 1952.This is the first published story of Myers.

Story summary.

"Sentient Killer No.VT672", a world-destroying weapon aimed at a certain world (that will later be called Hova) by aliens called Zoz a billion years ago, malfunctioned & turned non-violent! Now Zoz are long dead, The Weapon has uplifted a local species of animals who now have a 37-world empire, & finally there is the beginning of a conflict between Hovans & the humans.

When Hovans seek the help of The Weapon - a kind of god to them - against humans, The Weapon wants to first meet a human specimen - so it can learn to hate the species enough to destroy them!

The Weapon's funny interactions with the human specimen, Jacob Absher, however, turn out to have an unexpected side effect...

Fact sheet.

First published: Galaxy, December 1952.
Rating: B.
Download full text from Baen CD.
Related: Stories of Howard L Myers.