“I am neither he nor she,” Piyopok sparkled. “When I am old, I will return home and spend a few years caring for the children of others. When my time comes, I will become my own children.”
“How will you become your own children?” the Queen asked.
“I will divide into parts,” Piyopok sparkled. “Each part will become a new Gek.”
“There will be two of you? Three of you?” The Queen pondered aloud.
“Not really,” Piyopok said. “Each will have a vague memory of me, but will not be me. I fondly remember my forebear Guyopol, but I am not Guyopol.”
“How remarkable,” said the Queen.
“Your highness, be assured that how you reproduce is equally remarkable to me,” Piyopok sparkled.
-- From “Edison Wedge and the Gek”
Edison’s rise from humble circumstances to a career working for the Gek traces a Horatio Alger trajectory, until disaster strikes, disrupting his comfortable life. His fellow humans lie, steal, and kidnap, and the sphinx-like Gek aren’t always reliable, either. Edison’s path has a few bumps until opportunities open out in new directions in a satisfying ending. This is just the sort of story bright young readers are looking for: a lively adventure story with fascinating aliens set in a future full of possibilities.
Told with a dry sense of humor, the story resolves in a manner that follows naturally from what we have learned of the frooners.
Neher’s stories recall the early work of Larry Niven, with exotic aliens and an unyielding internal logic underlying the events of each story. These stories are evidence that a promising career awaits this new writer.
Both stories are available as Nook ebooks:
Edison Wedge and the Gek by Jon O. Neher
The Froon Cycle by Jon O. Neher