Agent Of The Terran Empire (Ensign Flandry, Book 1) by Poul Anderson

By Poul Anderson

Flandry, the following a captain, undergoes a chain of adventures: he's kidnapped via the Scothians, an alien race hoping to invade the Terran Empire; rescues the Emperor's abducted granddaughter; meets Aycharaych, his nemesis in league with the Merseians; and investigates a formerly unencountered alien race that has invaded the far away colonial international of Vixen.

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At that point the air was full of them; it made his living room, his whole house, cloudy. During this stage he tried not to inhale them. Most of all he felt sorry for his dog, because he could see the bugs landing on and settling all over him, and probably getting into the dog’s lungs, as they were in his own. Probably—at least so his empathic ability told him—the dog was suffering as much as he was. Should he give the dog away for the dog’s own comfort? No, he decided: the dog was now, inadvertently, infected, and would carry the bugs with him everywhere.

A. Powers had fed his own personal physiognomic characteristics into the computer units, so that, buried in the frantic permutation of qualities, his own surfaced and combined … on an average, he had calculated, of once each fifty years per suit, served up and reassembled, given enough time per suit. It was his closest claim to immortality. ” the host said loudly, and there was mass clapping. In his scramble suit, Fred, who was also Robert Arctor, groaned and thought: This is terrible. Once a month an undercover narcotics agent of the county was assigned at random to speak before bubblehead gatherings such as this.

He pushed open the car door and stepped out. The girl eyed him and continued on. He followed. Thinks I’m fixing to grab-ass, he thought as he snaked among the people. How easily she gained speed; he could barely see her now as she glanced back. A firm, calm face … He saw large eyes that appraised him. Calculated his speed and would he catch up. Not at this rate, he thought. She can really move. At the corner people had halted for the sign to say WALK instead of DON’T WALK; cars were making wild left turns.

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