Thursday, December 9, 2010

Murray Leinster's "The Trans-Human" (short story, war): Loneliness does strange things to a teenager

An illustration accompanying the original publication in Science-Fiction Plus magazine of short story The Trans-Human by Murray Leinster
There are a lot of stories where a baby is raised by another species & grows up thinking it's of its adoptive species rather than its real one - Mogli raised by wolves, eagle baby raised among the chicken, ... This story is of this kind.

Story summary.

Human colonization of galaxy has brought them in conflict with Khasr, spider-like aliens. Khasr had destroyed a lot of human colony worlds before humans suspected aliens' existence. Then the war began.

The story is of Johnny, a 2 year old baby boy kidnapped by Khasr before they destroyed his world. He's fed carefully chosen propaganda & grows up thinking he's a mutilated Khasr, mutilated by violent human action. Aliens will deploy him on a suicide mission to destroy earth when he's 14.

Only, he's naive at subterfuge & is quickly caught near earth. And then come his hormonal reactions on his first ever landing on earth, physical contact with a girl, living with a family, ...

Meanwhile, humans will use Khasr weapon on aliens themselves.

Fact sheet.

First published: Science-Fiction Plus, December 1953.
Rating: B.
Related: Stories of Murray Leinster (an annotated selection of his "good" works).


Anonymous said...

Sounds good! Never tried this author.

Tinkoo said...

He's among the better ones.