Sten Adventures Book 6: The Return of the Emperor
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|Author||Chris Bunch and Allan Cole|
|Cover artist||David Mattingly|
|Genre||Science fiction novel|
|Publisher||Del Rey Books, reissued by Orbit Books|
|Media type||Print (paperback)|
|Preceded by||Revenge of the Damned|
The Eternal Emperor had been assassinated at the end of the last book. Apparently, he is not so immortal after all.
Sten takes his leave of Imperial service, then takes it upon himself to hunt down and kill the members of the Privy Council that took over after the demise of the Emperor. He gathers proof they were responsible for the assassination but can not touch them. Finally, after a failed assassination mission, he organizes a grand tribunal to try them for their crimes, even though they are not present.
This book also follows a mysterious character named Raschid that wakes up in a strange spaceship, in a strange portion of space, with no memory. He leaves, finds himself drawn to a dive of a diner and becomes the cook. He is very successful and things look good for him until his internal clock tells him it is time to leave. He can not even explain it to himself, it is just time to go.
He signs onto a smuggling ship, organizes a mutiny and takes over the ship, mostly to prevent the bloodshed that would occur if the other members of the crew were to carry through their own mutiny. He lands the ship at its scheduled point, a planet called Dusable.
Dusable is the most corrupt planet in the known universe. Everything about the planet revolves around politics; the only thing you can say about Dusable, is that it works. Raschid wades in and in a dazzling display of political cleverness and guile, rigs the election. Again, he does not know why he is doing this, just that he is supposed to.
After the election, he borrows a ship and takes off. Something in his heads has clicked and he knows what he is supposed to do. He makes a few stops along the way and shows up to the grand tribunal that Sten is running and stuns everyone by parading out of his ship with his Imperial Gurkha bodyguards. He is the Eternal Emperor reborn.
The book ends with the Privy Council captured or killed and the Eternal Emperor in charge once again. It looks like it is smooth sailing for Sten from here on out.
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