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By James White

Area basic: a tremendous deep-space medical institution station at the Galactic Rim, the place human and alien drugs meet. Its 384 degrees and millions of employees individuals are supposedly capable of meet the desires of any available alien patient--though that potential is often being strained as extra (and stranger) alien races happen to hitch the galactic neighborhood. Sentient viruses, interspecies romances, undreamed-of institutional catering problems--it all lands on area General's doorstep. And the one factor more unusual than a hitherto unknown alien species is having a member of that species happen on your Emergency Room.The first of 2 omnibus volumes reprints the works that all started the sphere common sequence, which have been formerly released as health facility Station (1962), superstar medical professional (1963), and significant Operation (1971).

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His voice was reserved as he said, “Severe bruising and a couple of pulled tendons is all—you were lucky. Rest. I’ll give you some stuff to rub on it. ” began O’Mara, then saw where the doctor was looking. “That’s food compound. The little so-and-so kept moving while I was spraying it. But speaking of the youngster, can you tell me—” “No, I can’t,” said Pelling. “My brain is overloaded enough with the ills and remedies of my own species without my trying to stuff it with FROB physiology tapes. ” He sniffed loudly and made a face.

While there were many species with this ability, the response to color in each species was very rarely matched. What appeared to be a bluish-gray patch to O’Mara might look like anything from yellow-gray to dirty purple to another being, and the trouble was that the other being might have been the author of the book. One of the appendices gave a rough color-equivalent chart, but it was a tedious, time-consuming job checking back on it, and his knowledge of Universal was not perfect anyway. Five hours later he was still no nearer diagnosing the FROB’s ailment, and the single blue-gray patch on its hide had grown to twice its original size and been joined by three more.

He knew that the recently orphaned Hudlarian must still be feeling confused and frightened, that the mere process of feeding it could not possibly fulfill all of its emotional needs—he knew all this and felt a deep pity for the being. But these feelings were in some quiet, sane and civilized portion of his mind and divorced from all the pain and weariness and frightful onslaughts of sound currently torturing his body. He was really two people, and while one of him knew the reason for the noise and accepted it, the other—the purely physical O’Mara—reacted instinctively and viciously to stop it.

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