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October 14th, 2005, 10:21 PM
Oh no, this is my first time to post and my whole post just evaporated when I tried to make a bulleted list.

Now I have to rewrite the whole thing.

I am trying to find the title/author of a fabulous short story I read many years ago. I don't recall the compilation it appeared in, nor the names of the characters.

Someone breaks a minor law in the Emperor's palace and is sent to a punishment planet (for petting a kitten).
There, he is surgically altered and given claws and thick skin.
Placed on the planet surface with other "criminals," he digs down into the soil.
Like the others on the planet, he is used to grow body parts that are then harvested.
A large bull-man takes care of them and is compassionate to them.
Finally, after he struggles not to lose all sense of himself, the planet is liberated and all are freed.

The story is ever and ever so much better than I make it sound.
It is fascinating, well-written, and quite bittersweet in tone.

Please, if anyone knows this story, please post the title.

I thank ye very much.


October 16th, 2005, 03:57 PM
This doesn't quite fit all your elements, but part of it reminds me of "A Planet Named Shayol" by Cordwainer Smith, written in 1961 and republished in his collection "Rediscovery of Mankind." It's got the prison planet, and people having organs and bits harvested off them. Hope that helps a bit.

October 16th, 2005, 04:10 PM

That is the title! It has a bull-man called B'dikkat in it, he's the one that helps the poor things who are growing the body parts. He goes about drugging them.

Thankee, thankee, I so need to reread this story, all the more remarkable for its 1961 copyright.

Many more thanks.

October 16th, 2005, 05:46 PM
Wow, I got one! I think this is my first time being able to answer one of these questions. Go ME!!! :o

BTW, I highly recommend you pick up the entire collection "Rediscovery of Man." Cordwainer Smith was a phenomenal writer, and that has basically all of his short works, which were his best. There's a ton of stuff in there that you'll probably like.