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Friday, October 11, 2013

"Requiem in D-minor (for prions, whale and burning bush)" by Ian McHugh

First appeared in Hub #24.

A failed PhD candidate links whale songs to prions and these prions to aliens, trying to communicate--to someone or something other than humans, since humans die.  An alien artifact is found on the moon and the candidate is called on to communicate with these aliens.  Its shape is in the form of a burning bush, but its attempts to communicate kill humans.  It is unconcerned with human affairs--in fact, it actively hampers them.

Clever use of multiple conceits.  Well-written with a pleasant suspense.  Albeit, the ending was familiar.

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