Friday, September 23, 2016

"Only a Signal Shown" by L. E. Buis - review

L. E. Buis's "Only a Signal Shown" is an arresting little tale that poses a provocative "what-if" situation. A colony ship on its centuries-long journey to Alpha Centauri awakens the "sleeping" captain to report an unexpected occurrence.

An alien ship has been detected that will virtually cross the path of the colony ship.

Two other shipmates have already been awakened: the security chief and the cultural expert. They disagree on whether to attack the alien presence or to greet it as a First Contact.

In some ways, there is little physical danger in greeting the aliens, because the "cargo" aboard the colony ship is really only digitally stored personalities. However, the key directive of the mission is to ensure that the cargo arrives safely at its destination. The captain is still debating what to do, when the decision is abruptly taken out of his hands.


"Only a Signal Shown" appears in the 12 September 2016 issue of Perihelion Online Science Fiction Magazine. Check it out at

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