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The Rim Worlds

... out on the Galactic Rim things are very iffy and if you fart really hard your're liable to blow yourself on to an Alternate Time Track.

A Bertram Chandler.






















Baleful Beasts 1974
(Cover Emanuel Schongut)

Editor(s): Seon Manley & Gogo Lewis
Publisher: Lothrop, Lee & Shepard Co. (USA)
ISBN: 0-688-41573-3
Publication Date: 1974

Baleful Beasts 1974

(Written As By George Whitley)
Short Story

Unfortunately, man has not always been kind to animals. Suppose we were to speculate about a time when animals could turn upon us and attack. Perhaps the smarter the animal, the more vicious the attack; who knows?

Since the times of the Greeks, dolphins and porpoises have been credited with extraordinary abilities to rival those of man. According to ancient Greek mythology, the dolphins and porpoises were originally men who were transformed into sea beasts by the god Bacchus. The ancient writers said that there was and obscure but powerful bond of affection between these animals and humanity, that were endowed with kindheartedness and a man-loving propensity. Certainly both dolphin and porpoise often show endearing characteristics. They often escort vessels at sea, and have been known to rescue swimmers; there very presence in folklore signified fair weather and good sailing.

The Greeks wrote poems expressing the wish that they themselves were dolphins and porpoises, man's other souls half between sea and land."

Suppose, then, that these creatures that are so close to man should turn against humanity. "Change of Heart" is no a Just So story as Kipling might write, but rather a frightening just-suppose.