Sailing to Byzantium: Six Novellas
strange. I can scarcely believe it really existed. —There are times, now, when I begin to feel the same way, McCulloch said. The volcano receded in the distance; its warmth could no longer be felt; the water was dark again, and cold, and growing colder, and McCulloch could no longer detect any trace of that sulphurous aroma. It seemed to him that they were moving now down an endless incline, where scarcely any creatures dwelled. And then he realized that the marchers ahead had halted, and were
Help me. “I never heard of anyone jacking into a passenger in suspension,” Dismas said. “No reason why not,” said Roacher. “What’s the good? Still stuck in a housing, you are. Frozen down, that’s no better than staying matrix.” “Five to two it was matrix intrusion,” Roacher said, glaring. “Done,” Dismas said. Gavotte laughed and came in on the bet. So too did sinuous little Katkat, taking the other side. Rio de Rio, who had not spoken a word to anyone in his last six voyages, snorted and
Discerners SPEAKING BEFORE AN AUDIENCE was nothing new for me, of course. Not after all the years I’ve spent in classrooms, patiently instructing each season’s hairy new crop of young in the mysteries of tachyon theory, anterior-charge particles, and time-reversal equations. Nor was this audience a particularly alien or frightening one: it was made up mainly of faculty people from Harvard and M.I.T., some graduate students, and a sprinkling of lawyers, psychologists, and other professional folk
And then the Library! All those lost treasures, reclaimed from the jaws of time! Stupendous columned marble walls, airy high-vaulted reading rooms, dark coiling stacks stretching away to infinity. The ivory handles of seven hundred thousand papyrus scrolls bristling on the shelves. Scholars and librarians gliding quietly about, smiling faint scholarly smiles but plainly preoccupied with serious matters of the mind. They were all temporaries, Phillips realized. Mere props, part of the illusion.
miserable evasion, cowardly, vile. McCulloch shivered. He imagined himself crying out, “We eat them!” and the water turning black with their shocked outbursts and saw them instantly falling upon him, swiftly and efficiently slicing him to scraps with their claws. Through his mind ran monstrous images of lobsters in tanks, lobsters boiling alive, lobsters smothered in rich sauces, lobsters shelled, lobsters minced, lobsters rendered into bisques—he could not halt the torrent of dreadful visions.