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Stephen Baxter Starfall AD 4771 Starfall minus 49 years Between Sol and Alpha Centauri Minya and Huul stood together on the comet's observation deck, in freefall, gently embraced by smart webbing. Beneath their feet lay the bulk of the comet nucleus, a fifty-kilometres-deep frozen ocean of dirty water ice. Above their heads was the fine carapace of the observation blister, and above that nothing but stars, a field of jewels. Huul drank in the view, for he knew he had only moments left to enjoy it. Already the bots were working at the fringe of the window, coating it over with an authentic-looking layer of comet frost. When the blister was covered altogether it would be dismantled, this outer level of decking collapsed, and the human crew confined to a huddle of chilly chambers deep in the comet's heart And Huul's son, yet unborn, would never see the stars at all—not until he was older than Huul was now. Huul, with a spasm of...