Accept No Substitutes can be found in






Infinity Science Fiction

March, 1958

The Sexual Morality
Act was fierce to buck,
but the Algolian
sex surrogate was
... er... even fiercer!

Ilustrated by ED EMSH

Accept No
Substitutes

By ROBERT SHECKLEY

RALPH GARVEY'S private space yacht was in the sling at Boston Spaceport, ready for takeoff. He was on yellow standby, waiting for the green, when his radio crackled.

"Tower to G43221," the radio buzzed. "Please await customs inspection."

"Righto," said Garvey, with a calmness he did not feel. Within him, something rolled over and died.

Customs inspection! Of all the black, accursed, triple-distilled bad luck! There was no regular inspection of small private yachts. The Department had its hands full with the big interstellar liners from Cassiopeia, Algol, Deneb, and a thousand other places. Private ships just weren't worth the time and money. But to keep them in line, Customs held occasional spot checks. No one knew when the mobile customs team would descend upon any particular spaceport. But chances of being inspected at any one time were less than fifty to one.

Garvey had been counting on that factor. And he had paid eight hundred dollars to know for certain that the East coast team was in Georgia. Otherwise, he would never have risked a twenty-year jail sentence for violation of the Sexual Morality Act.

There was a loud rap on his port. "Open for inspection, please."

"Righto," Garvey called out. He locked the door to the after-cabin, If the inspector wanted to look there, he was sunk. There was no place in the ship where he could successfully conceal a packing case ten feet high, and no way he could dispose of its illegal contents.

"I'm coming," Garvey shouted. Beads of perspiration stood out on his high, pale forehead. He thought wildly of blasting off anyhow, running for it, to Mars, Venus.... But the patrol ships would get him before he had covered a million miles. There was nothing he could do but try to bluff it.

He touched a button. The hatch slid back and a tall, thin uniformed man entered.

"Thought you'd get away with it, eh, Garvey?" the inspector barked. "You rich guys never learn!"

Somehow, they had found out! Garvey thought of the packing crate in the after cabin, and its human-shaped, not-yet-living contents. Damning, absolutely damning. What a fool he'd been!

HE TURNED back to the control panel. Hanging from a corner of it, in a cracked leather holster, was his revolver. Rather than face twenty years breaking pumice on Lunar, he would shoot, then try—

"The Sexual Morality Act isn't a blue law, Garvey," the inspector continued, in a voice like steel against flint. "Violations can have a catastrophic effect upon the individual, to say nothing of the race. That's why we're going to make an example of you, Garvey. Now let's see the evidence."

"I don't know what in hell you're talking about," Garvey said. Surreptitiously his hand began to creep toward the revolver.

"Wake up, boy!" said the inspector. "You mean you still don't recognize me?"

Garvey stared at the inspector's tanned, humorous face. He said, "Eddie Starbuck?"

"About time! How long's it been, Ralph? Ten years?"

"At least ten," Garvey said. His knees were beginning to...

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