Wednesday, March 8, 2017

"His Hand Had Found the Small Blaster and the Night Was Heavy with the Scent of Burnt Flesh"

"Who Murders, Who Dreams."
By Jeffrey Goddin (?-?).
First appearance: Galaxy, June 1977.
Short story (14 pages).
Online at (HERE).
(Note: Faded text; click the "Zoom In" function 3 or 4 times for greater clarity.)
"Now and in the future, murderers are hunted by their dreams!"
The Environment, always pleasant, always present, knows Phil Lehman even better 
than he does himself; so when Phil starts down a dismal road in pursuit of ill-gotten 
gain, path from which there's no turning back, including an occasional detour into 
murder, the Environment knows . . . and waits . . . and plans for that moment, the 
perfect moment . . .

Editor's note about this story: "Murder, theft and betrayal in Metropolis A. Combining 
the genres of Science Fiction and Mystery is notoriously difficult. Mr. Goddin makes 
it look as easy as—dreaming!"
- There's not much about our author on the Wild World Web, except for this (HERE).
- The basic setup in this story is very reminiscent of Robert Sheckley's "Seventh Victim," which we highlighted last summer (HERE).

The bottom line: "Actions are sometimes performed in a masterly and most cunning way, while the direction of the actions is deranged and dependent on various morbid impressions — it's like a dream."

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