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Monday, December 25th, 2006

Borders of Infinity

Categories: [ Books/Barrayar ]

Three not-so-short stories by Lois McMaster Bujold, wrapped into one book, where Miles explains Illyan why the Dendarii have been costing ImpSec so much money lately.

In The Mountains of Mourning, Miles investigates the murder of a “mutant” baby in a small village in the backcountry of Barrayar, where infanticide for such a reason is still common. The mother accuses her husband of the crime becaus he was seen near the house where the baby was sleeping while the mother was picking berries at some distance. The murderer happens to be the mother of the mother, who had had several “mutant” babies and had killed them herself. The husband knew that she was the murderer, didn't say anything to protect his wife.

In Labyrinth, Miles conducts a covert operation on Jackson's Whole in order to help a geneticist of House Bharaputra to defect. The scientist won't leave without taking some vauable samples with him, but these are currently hidden into virus residing in the calf of a genetically engineered super soldier that he helped creating. Alas, the super-soldier has too much physiological drawbacks to be useful, and the project has been canceld; the only surviving specimen has been sold to House Ryoval for the Baron's collection of weird creatures. Miles then tries to enter Ryoval's facilities by night, but he's caught and locked up in a cellar with the super-soldier, who happens to be a female teenager, admitedly 8 feet tall and with sharp nails, but very friendly if you are friendly with her. Miles manages to escape with the creature he named Taura, just after destroying the whole collection of Ryoval's tissue samples that is the core of his business.

In The Borders of Infinity Miles is a prisoner of war of the Cetagandans. The prison camp is on Dagoola IV under an everlighted dome. The prisoners are all living together, and organised as gangs; only the stronger survive. Miles manages to organize the weaker people to control the distribution of food (which appears twice a day in a random location of the dome as a heap of space rations). Once he managed to organize all the prisoners, the Dendarii arrive and extracts all the ten thousand people within two hours, the delay needed by the Cetagandans to get their fleet to defend the place against the attacker.

[ Posted on December 25th, 2006 at 15:58 | 1 comment | ]

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Comments

Read it again

Comment #1, Matthieu Weber (Finland), February 10th, 2016 at 22:55

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