This time a Demarchist sleeper ship, with thousands of passengers on board, has apparently been taken over by the Conjoiners among the passengers and is now drifting in space near an large unknown object. Time is running out as, without any engines, the ship is slowly drifting towards the object and won’t survive the encounter.
I really enjoyed this short story which has quite a depth to it, essentially beginning with the quote:
Shame is a mask that becomes the face.
The implication of which being that if you wear the mask long enough, it grafts itself to your skin, becomes and indelible part of you–even a kind of comfort.
And actually ending with the quote:
A late gift is worse than no gift at all.
Would you mind leaving me now?
Available in the anthology, Infinite Stars.
And for my sins of thoroughly enjoying this i now head straight into A Spy in Europa.