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datatime: 2022-12-03 09:27:31 Author:GxUmZzoG

The latest death toll estimate, the announcer continued, "on this ninth day after the destruction of the capital, gives two million, eight hundred thousand dead. More than half of this figure is from the population of the city proper. The rest is an estimate based on the percentage of the population in the fringe and fallout areas known to have received critical doses of radiation. Experts predict that the estimate will rise as more radiation cases are reported.

No, no,"" he added in response to the murmur of surprise from the monks. ""Not His Holiness. I had not told you this before, but if the worst comes on Earth, the College of Cardinals-or what's left of it-will convene. The Centaurus Colony may then be declared a separate patriarchate, with full patriarchal jurisdiction going to the cardinal who will accompany you. If the scourge falls on us here, to him, then, will go the Patrimony of Peter. For though life on Earth may be destroyed-God forbid-as long as Man lives elsewhere, the office of Peter cannot be destroyed. There are many who think that if the curse falls on Earth, the papacy would pass to him by the principle of Epikeia if there were no survivors here. But that is not your direct concern, brothers, sons, although you will be subject to your patriarch under special vows as these which bind the Jesuits to the Pope."

Those who stayed behind had the easier part. Theirs was but to wait for the end and pray that it would not come.

Afterward, the conventual Mass was a Mass for Pilgrims and Travelers.

The latest death toll estimate, the announcer continued, "on this ninth day after the destruction of the capital, gives two million, eight hundred thousand dead. More than half of this figure is from the population of the city proper. The rest is an estimate based on the percentage of the population in the fringe and fallout areas known to have received critical doses of radiation. Experts predict that the estimate will rise as more radiation cases are reported.

He watched two novices carrying a steaming cauldron out of the emergence kitchen. They hoisted it onto a table and began ladling out soup.

The abbot's visitor cleared his throat and stirred restlessly in his chair. The abbot turned.

You are the continuity of the Order, he told them.

You're certain?

Well, said the visitor, "it's certainly better than letting them die horribly, by degrees."

Will we now, Zerchi grunted. "But listen a moment."

Thus it was settled. While the sun rose, a shepherd was elected to lead the flock.

Will we now, Zerchi grunted. "But listen a moment."

"With you goes the Memorabilia. With you also goes the apostolic succession, and, perhaps-the Chair of Peter.

If they choose me, I shall be certain.

The abbot smiled. "You heard me badly. I said "burden," not 'honor." Crucis autem onus si audisti ut honorem, nihilo errasti auribus."

Afterward, the conventual Mass was a Mass for Pilgrims and Travelers.

The abbot smiled. "You heard me badly. I said "burden," not 'honor." Crucis autem onus si audisti ut honorem, nihilo errasti auribus."

Accipiam, the monk repeated.

No, no,"" he added in response to the murmur of surprise from the monks. ""Not His Holiness. I had not told you this before, but if the worst comes on Earth, the College of Cardinals-or what's left of it-will convene. The Centaurus Colony may then be declared a separate patriarchate, with full patriarchal jurisdiction going to the cardinal who will accompany you. If the scourge falls on us here, to him, then, will go the Patrimony of Peter. For though life on Earth may be destroyed-God forbid-as long as Man lives elsewhere, the office of Peter cannot be destroyed. There are many who think that if the curse falls on Earth, the papacy would pass to him by the principle of Epikeia if there were no survivors here. But that is not your direct concern, brothers, sons, although you will be subject to your patriarch under special vows as these which bind the Jesuits to the Pope."

Well, said the visitor, "it's certainly better than letting them die horribly, by degrees."

It had not been easy to charter a plane for the flight to New Rome. Even harder was the task of winning clearance for the flight after the plane had been chartered. All civil aircraft had come under the jurisdiction of the military for the duration of the emergency, and a military clearance was required. It had been refused by the local ZDI. If Abbot Zerchi had not been aware of the fact that a certain air marshal and a certain cardinal archbishop happened to be friends, the ostensible pilgrimage to New Rome by twenty-seven bookleggers with bindlestiffs might well have proceeded on shank's mare, for lack of permission to use rapid transport jet. By midafternoon, however, clearance had been granted. Abbot Zerchi boarded the plane briefly before takeoff-for last farewells.

This station is required by law to broadcast the following announcement twice daily for the duration of the emergency: 'The provisions of Public Law 10-WR-3E in no way empower private citizens to administer euthanasia to victims of radiation poisoning. Victims who have been exposed, or who think they have been exposed, to radiation far in excess of the critical dosage must report to the nearest Green Star Relief Station, where a magistrate is empowered to issue a writ of Mori Vult to anyone properly certified as a hopeless case, if the sufferer desires euthanasia. Any victim of radiation who takes his own life in any manner other than that prescribed by law will be considered a suicide, and will jeopardize the sight of his heirs and dependents to claim insurance end other radiation relief benefits under the law. Moreover, any citizen who assists such a suicide may be prosecuted for murder. The Radiation Disaster Act authorizes euthanasia only after due process of law. Serious cases of radiation sickness must report to a Green Star Relief-

Well, said the visitor, "it's certainly better than letting them die horribly, by degrees."

Afterward, the conventual Mass was a Mass for Pilgrims and Travelers.

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