Saturday, April 16, 2011

QuasarDragon Presents - Murray Leinster's "A Thousand Degrees Below Zero."

New to the regular internet, a very early (pre-classic era) SF/disaster story by Murray Leinster "A Thousand Degrees Below Zero." First published in The Thrill Book Vol. 2, No. 2 (July 15, 1919).


FROM some point far overhead a musical humming became audible. It was not the rasping roar of an aeroplane motor, but a deep, truly melodious note that seemed to grow rapidly in volume. The soft-voiced conversa­tions on the upper deck were hushed. Every one listened to the strange sound from above. It grew and became clear and distinct. The source seemed to come nearer. At last the sound came from a spot directly overhead, then passed over and toward the Narrows.

A cold breeze beat down suddenly. It was not a cool sea breeze, but a cur­rent of air coming down from directly above the Coney Island steamer. It was actively, actually cold. A chorus of exclamations arose, full of the wit of the American a-holidaying.

"Br-r-r-r! I feel a draft!"

"Say, Min, are you givin' me the cold shoulder?"

"Sadie, d'you want to borrow all of my coat or only the sleeve?"

And one young man caused a ripple of laughter by remarking:

"Feels like my mother-in-law was around somewhere."

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