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For Every Man A Reason   By:

For Every Man A Reason by Patrick Wilkins

First Page:

Transcriber's note:

This etext was produced from If Worlds of Science Fiction November 1954. Extensive research did not uncover any evidence that the U.S. copyright on this publication was renewed.

Illustrated by Paul Orban



To love your wife is good; to love your State is good, too. But if it comes to a question of survival, you have to love one better than the other. Also, better than yourself. It was simple for the enemy; they knew which one Aron was dedicated to....

The thunder of the jets died away, the sound drifting wistfully off into the hills. The leaves that swirled in the air returned to the ground slowly, reluctantly.

The rocket had gone.

Aron Myers realized that he was looking at nothing. He noticed that his face was frozen into a meaningless smile. He let the smile slowly dissolve as he turned to look at his wife.

She was a small woman, and he realized for the first time how fragile she was. Her piquant face, framed by long brown, flowing hair, was an attractive jewel when set on the plush cushion of civilization. Now her face, set in god forsaken wilderness, metamorphosed into the frightened mask of a small animal.

They were alone.

Two human beings alone on this wild, lonely planet. Aron's mind suddenly snapped from that frame of reference his subjective view of their position to the scale of galaxies. It was a big planet to them, but it was a marble in the galaxy that man had discovered and claimed, and was now fighting with himself to retain. This aggregate of millions of pebbles was wracked with the violence of war, where marbles were more expendable than the microbes that dwelt on them.

The two walked hand in hand away from the meadow where the ship had been. The feeble wind snuffled at the scraps of paper and trash, the relics of man's passing.

They walked up the hill to their station, the reason for their being on this wayside planet.


Aron thought about the scenery around them. The compact, utilitarian building that was the station did not seem out of place against the bleak landscape. The landscape did not clash or conform to its location it just didn't give a damn whether there was a building there or not.

Aron and Martha, his wife, took their time. They had an abundance of that elusive quantity known as time at this lonely outpost. The trail up to the station was rough, with rocks and weeds tearing at them. Aron resolved that that would be one of his first projects, to put in a good path to the meadow where the rocket would come for them five years from now.

The sunset did nothing to enhance the countryside. There was not enough dust in the air to create any striking colors. As the shadows began to lap at the hill, they hurried the last few steps to the building.

That evening they were both nervous, justifiably so, for not only were they starting on the questionable adventure of sequestered watchdogs on the planet, they were starting the adventure of marriage.

Aron had met Martha on Tyros, a planetary trade center of some importance. She was a waitress.

Since he was marking time on Tyros, waiting for his assignment, he had a chance to cultivate her acquaintance. On their dates, what he had to tell her about his life was brief, impersonal.

Aron was in the Maintenance division of the Territorial Administration and his duties were to hold posts on various planets and act as an observer of that planet's caprices.

The rush of mankind from Earth, like a maddened swarm of bees from a hive, had carried it through the galaxy in a short time. On all the discovered planets that had to be reserved for future inhabitants, the Territorial Administration had set up observation stations. The men posted there were merely to record such fascinating information as meteorological and geographical conditions... Continue reading book >>

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