Arthur Charles Clarke

Science fiction

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INHERITANCE Arthur C. Clarke As David said, when one falls on Africa from a height of two hundred and fifty kilometers, a broken ankle may be an anticlimax but it is none the less painful. But what hurt him most, he pretended, was the way we had all rushed out into the desert to see what had happened to the A.20 and hadn't come near him until hours later. "Be logical, David," Jimmy Langford had protested. "We knew that you were O.K. because the base 'copter radioed when it picked you up. But the A.20 might have been a complete write-off." "There's only one A.20," I said, trying to be helpful, "but rocket test-pilots are-well, if not two a penny, at any rate twelve for a dime." David glared back at us from beneath his bushy eyebrows and said something in Welsh. "The Druid's curse," Jimmy remarked to me. "Any moment now you'll turn into a leek or a perspex model of Stonehenge ." You see, we were still pretty light-headed and it wouldn't do to be serious...

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