By Roger Zelazny, Robert Sheckley
On a devilish sabbatical in Europe, Azzie discovers that morality performs are the entire rage. He comes to a decision to strike again by means of generating an "immorality play", during which seven nondescript human pilgrims can be allowed via magic to achieve their hearts' wishes. however the forces of excellent are made up our minds to shut the play earlier than it opens. New characters unexpectedly commence roaming the degree, corresponding to a thankful Dead-listening Cyclops, and Azzie's personal protagonists start altering their hearts' wants at the slightest whim. this is often one theatrical construction which may do with no an angel - and there's even worse information ready within the wings...
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The Venetians additionally confronted a danger of common fires. humans have been attempting to preserve dry and hot, they usually have been frequently careless whereas lighting fixtures their stoves; the variety of harmful fires within the urban used to be more than an individual had ever recognized ahead of. necessarily, there has been speak that a few have been set purposely, through brokers of Venice's enemies; electorate have been ordered to maintain a detailed watch on strangers and to suspect the presence of spies of their midst consistently. The rain got here down in an incessant chatter that was once like wet wind gods chatting with one another with unfastened home windows for tongues. Droplets dribbled off mantels and cornices and the rest that led to some extent. The wind drove the rain and broke colossal drops into little drops. The water point rose gradually all through Venice. Water overflowed the canals and flooded out into the squares and piazzas. It crammed San Marco's sq. to a intensity of 3 ft, and it persevered to upward thrust. It used to be no longer the 1st time Venice have been afflicted by way of rain and floods, yet this used to be through a long way the worst a person had noticeable. robust winds out of the northeast, weighted down with Arctic frost, blew progressively for days, and confirmed no symptoms of letting up. The republic's leader climate forecaster resigned his well-paid hereditary publish, so distasteful had his paintings of predicting catastrophe turn into to him. humans have been praying to saints, devils, effigies, no matter what they can think about, hoping to get a few reduction. simply to make issues worse, plague have been suggested in a few components. And there have been claims that Mongol outriders were visible only a day's trip away, and there has been no telling how quick they have been advancing. The Venetians have been exhausted via their consistent concerns, fearful through the massive forces shaping up outdoor of the republic, and suspicious even of one another. the standard ceremonies in honor of yes saints had fallen into abeyance. church buildings have been taken up day and evening with prayers for the salvation of town, and with anathemas brought opposed to the Mongols. Church bells tolled frequently. This in flip spurred an air of determined gaiety. It was once an excellent season of events, masked balls, and fetes. Carnival reigned regularly, and not had Venice proven herself to larger virtue. regardless of the storms, candles gleamed brightly within the mansions of the wealthy, and tune might be heard up and down the canals. humans moved quickly in the course of the rainswept streets in cloak and part masks, on their manner from one parry to the subsequent. It was once as though one final fling was once all that remained for the proud previous urban. It didn't move unremarked that there has been whatever awesome approximately what was once taking place, anything that looked as if it would surpass Earthly good judgment, whatever that smacked of the supernatural and of the arrival of the final days. Astrologers searched via outdated parchment manuscripts and located predictions that the realm was once because of finish quickly, simply as that they had suspected, and that the 4 Horsemen of the Apocalypse might quickly be noticeable using around the flaming sky on the time of the ultimate sundown. a wierd incident happened sooner or later.