OF LOVE, FREE WILL, AND GRAY SQUIRRELS ON A SUMMER EVENING
by Stephen Goldin
Of Love, Free Will, and Gray Squirrels on a Summer Evening. Copyright 1974, 2002 by Stephen Goldin. All Rights Reserved.
Cover image Copyright by Jason Kasumovic.
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He first saw her at a party at her house. It was quite obviously an important affair; everyone in attendance was there in person, rather than sending projections of themselves. The fact that they were willing to travel physically to the asteroid showed the regard in which the Pistarchos family was held.
The assemblage was exotic. Heads of state mingled with entertainers, business magnates with culture heroes. Humans of all races, from nearly every settled planet. And there were aliens, too. Over in one corner, a bulbous Aalan was in animated conversation with a hermaphroditic CloBonner concerning ambisexual ethics. A Jezkini sat alone in his chair, his powerful musk driving away all potential human companions. Three tiny Laooo bunched together to one side, slightly terrified of being trampled by the crowds around them. Out on the terrace, where the cool night air was more bearable to him, an aged Fesserank was holding forth on intercultural marriages to an interested group of listeners.