• Home
  • Music
    • CDs
    • Vinyl
    • Tapes
  • Movies
    • DVD
    • Blu-Ray
    • 3D Blu-Ray
    • 4K Ultra HD
  • Video Games
    • XBox 360
    • Xbox One
    • PS3
    • Sony PSV
    • PS4
    • PS2
    • Wii
    • Wii U
    • Nintendo 3DS
    • Nintendo DS
    • NINTENDO GAMECUBE
    • Other
  • Books
    • Children's
    • Fiction
    • Graphic Novels
    • Nonfiction
    • Young Adult
    • Coloring Books
    • Audio Books
    • Education
  • GoodTech
    • Computer Components and Parts
    • Tablets and eReaders
    • Computer Accessories
    • Video Game Consoles and Accessories
  • Last Chance!
  • About
    • About Us
    • Contact Us
    • Policies & Privacy
  • Menu
    • Home
    • Music
      • CDs
      • Vinyl
      • Tapes
    • Movies
      • DVD
      • Blu-Ray
      • 3D Blu-Ray
      • 4K Ultra HD
    • Video Games
      • XBox 360
      • Xbox One
      • PS3
      • Sony PSV
      • PS4
      • PS2
      • Wii
      • Wii U
      • Nintendo 3DS
      • Nintendo DS
      • NINTENDO GAMECUBE
      • Other
    • Books
      • Children's
      • Fiction
      • Graphic Novels
      • Nonfiction
      • Young Adult
      • Coloring Books
      • Audio Books
      • Education
    • GoodTech
      • Computer Components and Parts
      • Tablets and eReaders
      • Computer Accessories
      • Video Game Consoles and Accessories
    • Last Chance!
  • About
    • About Us
    • Contact Us
    • Policies & Privacy
  • Menu
    • Home
    • Music
      • CDs
      • Vinyl
      • Tapes
    • Movies
      • DVD
      • Blu-Ray
      • 3D Blu-Ray
      • 4K Ultra HD
    • Video Games
      • XBox 360
      • Xbox One
      • PS3
      • Sony PSV
      • PS4
      • PS2
      • Wii
      • Wii U
      • Nintendo 3DS
      • Nintendo DS
      • NINTENDO GAMECUBE
      • Other
    • Books
      • Children's
      • Fiction
      • Graphic Novels
      • Nonfiction
      • Young Adult
      • Coloring Books
      • Audio Books
      • Education
    • GoodTech
      • Computer Components and Parts
      • Tablets and eReaders
      • Computer Accessories
      • Video Game Consoles and Accessories
    • Last Chance!
    • About
      • About Us
      • Contact Us
      • Policies & Privacy

Larry Niven

Fate of Worlds

Larry Niven Fate Of Worlds
$1.05 Pre-owned
 
In Stock - Should Ship Within 1 - 2 days

Add To Basket
 


Product Condition
All used items are in good or better condition. May have minor damage to jewel case including scuffs or cracks, or to the item cover including scuffs. The cover art and liner notes are included for a CD. VHS or DVD box is included. The majority of our disc games come in their case. The majority of our cartridge games do not include instructions or a case. No fuzzy/snowy frames on VHS tapes.
Shipping Rates
  • $3.99 for the first item
  • $1.00 for each additional item
  • Expedited Shipping available at checkout for $6.99 per item

Series:

Known Space

Excerpt from book:

1
 
 
“There is an intruder, sir,” Jeeves announced, breaking the silence.
Sigmund Ausfaller sighed. Age had not so much mellowed as exhausted him. The universe was out to get him, and so what? It had been—years?—since he had mustered the energy to care. Maybe it had been years since he had cared that he no longer cared.
“Sir?”
Shading his eyes with an upraised hand, Sigmund peered across the desert. The day’s final string of suns was low to the horizon. Here and there, scattered across barren landscape, cacti cast long shadows. A lone bird glided overhead. Beyond the limits of his stone patio, civilization had left no visible mark.
A cluster of cacti reminded him of other columns. Long ago. Far away. Columns of a world-shattering machine. And they had shattered a world, although by the time it had happened he had been dead. That happened to him far too often. The getting dead part. Peril to entire worlds, too, but—
“You should withdraw to safety, sir,” Jeeves prompted.
Sigmund sighed again, this time at himself. Age made one’s mind wander. So did living by oneself. Not that, with Jeeves around, he was truly alone. To be old and alone—
“Sir,” Jeeves insisted.
Sigmund struggled out of his big mesh hammock to stand. “Describe the intruder.”
“An antigrav flitter. It’s on approach from the east at just within the low-altitude speed limit.”
“Visual sighting?”
“Too distant at present. Radar, sir.”
“How long until it arrives?”
“Ten minutes, sir, if the craft maintains its current velocity.”
Sigmund glanced at the dark circle inset in a corner of his patio. The circle was the bottom of a stepping disc. Apart from its active side being obstructed—and so rendered inert—the device was like millions across the world. Flip to light-colored side up and in one pace he could teleport at light speed to any disc of his choosing, almost anywhere on the planet.
But were he to invert the disc, then others, if they had the authority to preempt his privacy settings, could teleport here.
Sigmund valued his privacy, and his stepping disc stayed upside down.
And to be honest, his disc was not exactly like the millions of others. The micro-fusion reactor on this disc would overload seconds after he stepped out, destroying all record of his destination.
He really valued his privacy.
“Sir?”
Sigmund considered. “They’re not stealthed. They’re approaching from the east, easy to spot, not flying out of the setting suns. They want us to know they’re coming.” Sigmund gestured at his modest home, in which, on the oaken desk he had crafted by hand, his pocket comp sat powered down. “It’s not as though they can call ahead.”
“Very good, sir,” Jeeves said in his gentleman’s gentleman tone of voice: acknowledgment and mild reproach together.
Jeeves was more ancient even than Sigmund. The butler mannerisms that had once been a few lines of code—an affectation or a jape on someone’s part—had, over the centuries, permeated every facet of the AI’s persona. Kind of like paranoia in Sigmund’s brain.
Friends don’t reprogram friends, even when they’re able.
Sigmund dropped back with a grunt into his hammock. “Let’s find out what our visitor wants.”
*   *   *
THE FLITTER MORPHED from invisible to droning speck to, all of a sudden, here. Sigmund stood watching as the craft swooped in for a landing on the windswept sands. The canopy pivoted upward from its aft edge; a woman, dressed in the trim blue uniform of the New Terran Defense Forces, stepped out of the cockpit.
“Good evening, Minister,” his granddaughter called.
Minister. An official visit, as though her uniform would not have told Sigmund that.
“It’s hot,” Sigmund said. “Join me in the shade, Captain.”
“Thank you, sir.” Julia looked around before joining Sigmund under the awning that overhung half the patio. She was a tall, lithe, beautiful woman with pale blue eyes and shoulder-length ash-blond hair.
“Sit, Captain. May I get you something to drink?”
“No, thank you, sir.” His visitor stood, ill at ease, uniform cap clutched under an arm.
Her nametag read BYERLEY-MANCINI. Sunslight reflecting off the nametag rendered a shimmering hologram, detailed beyond the capability of badge-sized photonics to mimic. So, too, did her rank insignia. On a world where everyone dressed in garments of programmable nanocloth, where on a whim the wearer could change the color, texture, and pattern of her clothing, the credentials of the planetary defense forces remained—special. And, in theory, difficult to counterfeit.
In progeny and in uniforms, Sigmund’s legacy survived. And in a third respect: that New Terra remained free and whole. If others had had their way …
“If I may, sir,” Julia prompted gently, as though channeling Jeeves.
“Go ahead,” Sigmund said. “What brings you here?”
“An astrophysical phenomenon, sir. An anomaly.”
Sigmund twitched. Twice in his long life he had been marooned, alone, deep in space. Three times he had been murdered, each death grislier than the last. A glimpse of an astrophysical phenomenon had presaged his most recent death and, after resurrection, left him stranded in interstellar space.
Turbulence in the ineffably tenuous interstellar medium. An uptick in concentrations of interstellar helium. Only by such subtleties had the Pak invasion armada, wave upon wave of ramscoop warships, given warning of its coming.
The Pak were genocidal xenophobes, a pestilence upon every other form of life. As protectors, the neuter postadult life stage, Pak were freakishly brilliant, reflexively aggressive, utterly selfish in the defense of their bloodlines. Eating tree-of-life root transformed an adult, what protectors dismissively called a breeder, into a protector.
Humanity, it turned out, descended from a Pak colony that had failed on Earth millions of years ago, because Earth lacked trace elements essential to tree-of-life. From the Pak perspective humans were, rather than distant cousins, mutants to be obliterated.
Sigmund shivered, all too aware that the universe cared not a fig for his memories or his phobias.
Julia was doing her best to hide her feelings, but beneath a stoic, professional veneer she was tense. Perhaps only someone who knew her well would notice.
Sigmund said, “I’m no astrophysicist.” Open up, Julia. Tell me what’s troubling you.
“Understood, sir.” Julia hesitated. “Is Jeeves with us?”
“Indeed, sir,” the AI intoned.
“This is a matter of world security, Minister,” Julia said.
“Jeeves and I are both fossils. Our security clearances, like my title, are long lapsed.” Never mind that, as far as this world was concerned, Sigmund was the one who had invented security clearances. That he had built from nothing what had been known on his watch as the Ministry of Defense. Never mind that Julia would have no inkling what a fossil was. Life beyond the single-celled was too recently imported to New Terra to have left fossils. “Whatever this anomaly is, you’ve come to tell me about it. So, tell.”
“Right.” Julia took a deep breath. “Something impossible has happened. You’re familiar with space-time ripples
  •  

Connect With Us

Revenue from Goodwill Anytime helps support Goodwill Northern New England designed workforce programs that connect people to job training and jobs — thank you for your support!