Redemption Cairn

Redemption Cairn

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Redemption Cairn

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Redemption Cairn is a science fiction short story by Stanley G. Weinbaum that first appeared in the March 1936 issue of Astounding Stories. "Redemption Cairn" is the only Weinbaum story set on Europa.

Weinbaum's Europa

In Weinbaum's Solar System, in keeping with the then-current "near-collision" hypothesis of planetary formation, Jupiter radiates enough heat to create Earth-like environments on the Galilean moons. Europa is airless except for a depression on the Jupiter-facing side of the tidally locked moon, which holds a thin, but breathable atmosphere. This region is divided into a number of small valleys separated from each other by ridges rising above the atmosphere. The most widespread Europan species is the bladder bird, which carries its own air supply with it in an air sac, allowing it to cross over the airless peaks.

Plot summary

Jack Sands, the story's narrator, is a spaceship pilot down on his luck. In September 2111, he is about to be evicted from a flophouse when he is recruited by his old friend Captain Harris Henshaw to co-pilot an expedition to Europa. Sands is one of only two survivors of a previous visit to the Jovian moon. The other was his drug-addled co-pilot Kratska, who crashed the expedition's ship, the Hera, while landing it on Earth. While Sands lay unconscious in a hospital, Kratska put the blame for the crash on him, ruining his reputation. Kratska has since disappeared.

Sands' new co-pilot is Claire "The...
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