The Expendables
By A. E. (Alfred Elton) Van Vogt

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I One hundred and nine years after leaving Earth, the spaceship, Hope of Man , went into orbit around Alta III. The following "morning" Captain Browne informed the shipload of fourth and fifth generation colonists that a manned lifeboat would be dropped to the planet's surface. "Every member of the crew must consider himself expendable," he said earnestly. "This is the day that our great grandparents, our forefathers, who boldly set out for the new space frontier so long ago, looked forward to with unfaltering courage. We must not fail them." He concluded his announcement over the intercom system of the big ship by saying that the names of the crew members of the lifeboat would be given out within the hour. "And I know that every real man aboard will want to see his name there." John Lesbee, the fifth of his line aboard, had a sinking sensation as...