It Is The Time Of The Gathering And All Nations Must Pay Tribute –
WHY MUST THEY? Kurt wondered, as the decrepit destroyer JAGER wallowed through uncharted waters on its way to Gibraltar, the Gathering of the fleet, and the Final Meeting with the Enemy.
It was sad to think how far man had fallen from the days when such vessels as the JAGER had been built. Now the last men struggled on in isolated communities, maintaining machines they could no longer build, ruled over by the distant Political Office in the person of the much despised and universally feared Political Officers. These black phantoms ruled mankind, telling one how to think, how to act, and when to obey the call to the Gathering.
And now the call had come for Kurt to sail off to Gibraltar to the Gathering – the ritual massing of the fleet for the War, the Gathering from which no one had ever returned...
Glen Cook is the author of dozens of novels of fantasy and science fiction, including The Black Company, The Garret Files, Instrumentalities of the Night, and the Dread Empire series. Cook was born in 1944 in New York City. He attended the Clarion Writers' Workshop in 1970, where he met his wife. He currently makes his home in St. Louis, MO.