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By Cyril M. Kornbluth, Remy Charlip

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As his practice had grown to engross the neighborhood illnesses, and then to a corner suite in an uptown taxpayer building, and finally to the sanitarium, she seemed to have grown with it. Oh, he thought, we have our little disputes— The girl, for instance, was too much interested in money. She had wanted to specialize in cosmetic surgery—removing wrinkles from wealthy old women and what-not. She didn’t realize, at first, that a thing like this was in their trust, that they were the stewards and not the owners of the little black bag and its fabulous contents.

He was just looking at the letters and words to find out whether, as letters and words, they conformed to Herald style. The steady tap of his pencil ceased at intervals as it drew a black line ending with a stylized letter “d” through the word “breast” and scribbled in “chest” instead, or knocked down the capital “E” in “East” to lower case with a diagonal, or closed up a split word—in whose middle Flannery had bumped the space bar of her typewriter—with two curved lines like parentheses rotated through ninety degrees.

He took the sheet from the twenty-fifth-century newspaper from Clurg's hands and put it securely in his own pocket. "When I get those-diamonds duplicated," he said, "I’ll burn them and forget the rest. Until then, I want you to stay close to home. " Clurg nervously promised. The secrecy, of course, didn't include Betty. He told her when he got home and she let out a yell of delight. She demanded the newspaper, read it avidly, and then demanded to see Clurg. "I don't think hell talk," Walter said doubtfully.

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A Mile beyond the Moon by Cyril M. Kornbluth, Remy Charlip


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