Derek Kunsken. The Way of the Needle. (Asimovs, March 2012)

An excellent piece of world-building from Kunsken, set on a planet whose inhabitants are metallic crablike creatures, who draw power from the ancient pulsar around which they orbit, post-supernova.

Mok, a Follower of the Needle, a martial order of priests, has a grave mission – to assassinate a high-ranking leader of another order. There are very human elements to the story, as his journey causes him to reflect on the society in which they live, and to learn friendship and humility, against the background of having to lose his fighting pincers to masquerade as a lower order creature.

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