By Elizabeth Ann Scarborough, Anne McCaffrey
In Catalyst, award-winning authors Anne McCaffrey and Elizabeth Ann Scarborough brought readers to the beguiling Barque Cats: spacefaring tom cats who serve aboard starships as full-fledged contributors of the team. hugely advanced, the cats proportion a nearly telepathic bond with their minders, or Cat Persons—until, abruptly, there isn't any “almost” approximately it, and a selected Barque Cat, Chester, learns to interchange concepts along with his human good friend, Jubal. different cats quickly achieve an identical skill.
Behind the seeming miracle is a mysterious cat named Pshaw-Ra, who possesses wisdom and expertise some distance past whatever the Barque Cats—or their humans—have ever noticeable. whilst worry of a virulent plague leads the govt. first to quarantine after which to kill all animals suspected of an infection, Pshaw-Ra—with the aid of Chester, Jubal, and the staff of the starship Ranzo—activates a “mousehole” in house that incorporates the refugees to a spot of defense: Pshaw-Ra’s domestic planet of Mau, the place godlike cats are worshiped through human slaves.
But Pshaw-Ra’s activities are much less noble than they seem. The scheming cat plans to mate the Barque Cats together with his personal pussycat inventory, making a hybrid race of more suitable cats—a race destined to overcome the universe. but correct from the beginning, his plans cross awry.
For something, there’s a brand new queen on Mau: Pshaw-Ra’s daughter Nefure, a spoiled brat—er, cat—with a mood as brief as her realization span. Pshaw-Ra’s different daughter, the rightful queen Renpet, is exiled, working for her existence within the merely path to be had to her—down into the enormous catacombs underneath the Mauan wasteland. faraway from receiving the hero’s welcome he anticipated, Pshaw-Ra needs to use every piece of his significant cleverness simply to survive.
Meanwhile, as traditional, Chester and Jubal stumble correct into the center of items, within the approach uncovering the misplaced secrets and techniques of the Mauan civilization. yet that’s no longer all they discover. within the forgotten catacombs deep less than the Mauan capital, anything has woke up. whatever as outdated because the universe. anything that hungers to eat all mild and life—and that bears an timeless hatred for cats.
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Extra info for Catacombs (Tales of the Barque Cats, Book 2)
She did not argue. She sat there staring at the door, making up her mind that Nan was going to come after her at any minute, they would surely have talked to Nan by now, and Nan was going to come down here and handle the station legal people the way a stationer knew how to do. And she'd tell Nan it wasn't the way it looked, she'd tell Nan everything—at least the part about Ritterman and the other man, and Nan would understand that, Nan would back her story about not being a free-consumer—And the Thule stationmaster would give her a personal apology and a thousand cred too, of course he would, that was the way station justice worked, every one in the Fleet knew that, the way they knew there was thanks from stationers for favors done or a memorial to the Fleet's dead or a shred of support from the merchanters who had persistently smuggled war supplies and intelligence either side of the Line, then cried piracy because the Fleet supplied itself the only way it could—with no damn help from the stations, none from the merchanters, none, at the last, from Earth.
She ignored the looks, got her chips and her sandwich and her soda, tucked the chips into her pocket and walked out on Thule's little number one dock, where a cluster of lights blazed white on the gantry, spotting the area where dockworkers went about their prep, Thule's usual muddled, seldom-flexed system of operations. She gave a disgusted twitch of her shoulders, looked at that port, swallowed bites of sandwich and washed them down with soda. Damn, that ship was a problem, it was a major Problem, it bid fair to cost her neck.
0 bu y rm er Y F T ra n sf o ABB PD er Y So they were Mallory's spies, most probably—but not with Mallory, not too legitimate, since spooks had regularly sold information to any bidder. And going onto that ship was a case of hiding in plain sight. If she could learn the moves, learn the accent, learn a spook's ways—then she could get along on a spook ship, damn sure she could. Dangerous. But in some ways less dangerous a hire than on some merchanter on the up and up, with a crew that expected a merchanter brat to know a lot of things, things about posts she'd never touched, especially about cargo regs and station law, things that never had been her business.