Project mastodon by clifford d. simak

The Project Gutenberg EBook of Project Mastodon, by Clifford Donald Simak

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Title: Project Mastodon

Author: Clifford Donald Simak

Release Date: August 2, 2007 [EBook #22216]

Language: English

*** START OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK PROJECT MASTODON ***

[Transcriber’s Note: This story was first published in March 1955
_Galaxy_ and the etext was produced from the anthology “All the
Traps of Earth and other stories”. Extensive research did not
Uncover any evidence that the U. S. copyright on this publication
Was renewed.]

PROJECT MASTODON

By

Clifford D. Simak

The chief of protocol said, “Mr. Hudson of

– ah – Mastodonia.”

The secretary of state held out his hand. “I’m glad to see you,
Mr. Hudson. I understand you’ve been here several times.”

“That’s right,” said Hudson. “I had a hard time making your people
Believe I was in earnest.”

“And are you, Mr. Hudson?”

“Believe me, sir, I would not try to fool you.”

“And this Mastodonia,” said the secretary, reaching down to tap
The document upon the desk. “You will pardon me, but I’ve never
Heard of it.”

“It’s a new nation,” Hudson explained, “but quite legitimate. We
Have a constitution, a democratic form of government, duly elected
Officials, and a code of laws. We are a free, peace-loving people
And we are possessed of a vast amount of natural resources and – “

“Please tell me, sir,” interrupted the secretary, “just where are
You located?”

“Technically, you are our nearest neighbors.”

“But that is ridiculous!” exploded Protocol.

“Not at all,” insisted Hudson. “If you will give me a moment, Mr.
Secretary, I have considerable evidence.”

He brushed the fingers of Protocol off his sleeve and stepped
Forward to the desk, laying down the portfolio he carried.

“Go ahead, Mr. Hudson,” said the secretary. “Why don’t we all sit
Down and be comfortable while we talk this over?”

“You have my credentials, I see. Now here is a propos – “

“I have a document signed by a certain Wesley Adams.”

“He’s our first president,” said Hudson. “Our George Washington,
You might say.”

“What is the purpose of this visit, Mr. Hudson?”

“We’d like to establish diplomatic relations. We think it would be
To our mutual benefit. After all, we are a sister republic in
Perfect sympathy with your policies and aims. We’d like to
Negotiate trade agreements and we’d be grateful for some Point
Four aid.”

The secretary smiled. “Naturally. Who doesn’t?”

“We’re prepared to offer something in return,” Hudson told him
Stiffly. “For one thing, we could offer sanctuary.”

“Sanctuary!”

“I understand,” said Hudson, “that in the present state of
International tensions, a foolproof sanctuary is not something to
Be sneezed at.”

The secretary turned stone cold. “I’m an extremely busy man.”

Protocol took Hudson firmly by the arm. “Out you go.”

General Leslie Bowers put in a call to State and got the
Secretary.

“I don’t like to bother you, Herb,” he said, “but there’s
Something I want to check. Maybe you can help me.”

“Glad to help you if I can.”

“There’s a fellow hanging around out here at the Pentagon, trying
To get in to see me.



Project mastodon by clifford d. simak