AN EMPIRE OF FOUR THOUSAND WORLDS
The Pact of Mankind is a dinosaur lumbering toward oblivion; hedged about by alien enemies, rotten with decadence and corruption, run by competing oligarchies of criminal corporations, but ruled by a single man – the High Secretary of the Pact.
If the High Secretary should die, the contest to succeed him would draw in:
• The head of the armed services, using the Fleet as a tool of his political will;
• Powerful corporations, acting with calculated ruthlessness to loose alien enemies into the heart of the empire;
• The High Secretary's children and his faithless widow, pawns in a struggle which only one need survive;
• A secret cabal among the non-human races enslaved to do Mankind's labor, now ready to supplant their masters; and
• Rebellious troops from the empire's borders, determined to place one of their own sort in the High Secretary's chair.
If the High Secretary should die, it would be feeding time in the piranha tank.
And the High Secretary is dead!