SFF Audio were talking about Cordwainer Smith’s story The Game of Rat and Dragon on Twitter yesterday and suggested checking out the Wikipedia description. I looked it up and found what has to be one of the greatest first few lines of a Wikipedia page ever. This description reminds me of how lovely and weird science fiction and/or psychedelic drugs can be. I definitely need to find a quiet safe place to take a dose of this story.
“The story takes place in the far future. Human travel in outer space is threatened by strange creatures known as the Dragons. Imperceptible to ordinary people, Dragons are experienced as nothing but a sudden death or insanity. Dragons can only be destroyed by very strong light, but they move too fast for conventional defense methods. Both human and telepathic cats (who perceive the dragons as rats) are able to sense the creatures within milliseconds. The humans and cats work together as teams to protect interstellar spaceships traveling via planoforming (a type of faster than light speed travel). The cats ride outside of the spaceships in their own tiny crafts, waiting for the order from their human partner to attack.”