Second stage Lensman

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Authors: Edward Elmer Smith
Tags: spanish
you tackle him, sister," he advised
    her when she had recovered. "Couldn't you tell from the feel of my mind-block that you
    couldn't crack it?"
         "I was afraid so," she admitted, hopelessly, "but I had to kill you if I possibly
    could. Since you are the stronger you will of course kill me." Whatever else these
    peculiar women were, they were stark realists. "Go ahead—get it over with. . . . But it
    can't be!" Her thought was a wail of protest. "I do not grasp your thought of a 'man', but
    you are certainly a male; and no mere male can be—can possibly be, ever— as strong
    as a person."
         Kinnison got that thought perfectly, and it rocked him. She did not think of herself
    as a woman, a female, at all. She was simply a person. She could not understand even
    dimly Kinnison's reference to himself as a man. To her. "man" and "male" were
    synonymous terms. Both meant sex, and nothing whatever except sex.
         "I have no intention of killing you, or anyone else upon this planet," he informed
    her levelly, "unless I absolutely have to. But I have chased that speedster over there all
    the way from Tellus, and I intend to get the man that drove it here, if I have to wipe out
    half of your population to do it. Is that perfectly clear?"
         "That is perfectly clear, male." Her mind was fuzzy with a melange of immiscible
    emotions. Surprise and relief that she was not to be slain out of hand; disgust and
    repugnance at the very idea of such a horrible, monstrous male creature having the
    audacity to exist; stunned, disbelieving wonder at his unprecedented power of mind; a
    dawning comprehension that there were perhaps some things which she did not know:
    these and numerous other conflicting thoughts surged through her mind. "But there was
    no male within the space-traversing vessel which you think of as a 'speedster'," she
    concluded, surprisingly.
         And he knew that she was not lying. "Damnation!" he snorted to himself.
    "Fighting women again!"
         "Who was she, then—it, I mean," he hastily corrected the thought.
         "It was our elder sister . . ."
         The thought so translated by the man was not really "sister". That term, having
    distinctly sexual connotations and implications, would never have entered the mind of
    any "person" of Lyrane II. "Elder child of the same heritage" was more like it.
         ". . . and another person from what it claimed was another world," the thought
    flowed smoothly on. "An entity, rather, not really a person, but you would not be
    interested in that, of course."
         "Of course I would," Kinnison assured her. "In fact, it is this other person, and not
    your elderly relative, in whom I am interested. But you say that it is an entity, not a
    person. How come? Tell me all about it."
         "Well, it looked like a person, but it wasn't. Its intelligence was low, its brain
    power was small. And its mind was upon things . . . its thought were so . . ."
         Kinnison grinned at the Lyranian's efforts to express clearly thoughts so utterly
    foreign to her mind as to be totally incomprehensible.
         "You don't know what that entity was, but I do," he broke in upon her floundering.
    "It was a person who was also, and quite definitely, a female. Right?"
         "But a person couldn't—couldn't possibly—be a female!" she protested. "Why,
    even biologically, it doesn't make sense. There are no such things as females—there
    can't be!" and Kinnison saw her viewpoint clearly enough. According to her sociology
    and conditioning there could not be.
         "We'll go into that later," he told her. "What I want now is this female zwilnik. Is
    she—or it—with your elder relative now?"
         "Yes. They will be having dinner in the hall very shortly."
         "Sorry to bother, but you'll have to take me to them—right now."
         "Oh, may I? Since I could not kill you myself, I must take you to them so they can
    do it. I

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