sleep drug... Harmless, quick, no after effects. It saves simple
people from their terror of something new, like space. When they get to
Venus they don't mind. The planet is smaller, you know, than has been
thought, not more than six thousand five hundred miles, more clouds high
up, none below. But the brightness of the sun comes through without
the heat; and all the glories of Earth cannot compare with the treasure
land that is Venus. No, they don't mind when they see..."
This is from The Great Engine by A E van Vogt. (Astounding, July 1943; and in the collection Away and Beyond, 1952.)
The following passage is from another story by A E van Vogt. Which one?
..."For some thousands of years we, whom you call Venusians, have watched with considerable uneasiness the development of civilization on the third planet of this sun system. Our people are not adventurous, nor is there a single war known to our recorded history. This is not to say that the struggle for survival has not been a bitter one. But we have an immensely more sluggish metabolism. Long ago our psychologists decided that space flight was not for us.
"We have accordingly concentrated on the development of the purely Venusian way of life, so that when your ship approached out atmosphere, we were confronted with the necessity of deciding under what conditions we would establish relations with human beings..."
For the answer see Tale-To-Author.
...The Venusian city of Kar shimmered beneath an inverted bowl of blue glory. It was a perfect day for a civic demonstration such as the welcoming home of the first expedition to Earth in many centuries. Citizens appreciated the cooperation of the weather; Liberty Square was packed with a murmuring, multi-coloured concourse that swirled in kaleidoscopic patterns. Something shrieked in the vault of space; the kaleidoscope turned uniformly pink, as five hundred thousand faces lifted to the sky.
High in the stratosphere appeared a pair of metallic pencils, their rear ends vomiting crimson flames. Sound waves from the rocket tubes fleeted downwards, bounced from the eardrums of the expectant crowd. The pencils swelled; the crimson spread along their under-surfaces as the retarding rockets belched with maximum power. In a short time the objects had resolved themselves into long, streamlined space ships...
This is from Seeker of Tomorrow by Eric Frank Russell and Leslie J Johnson, Astounding Stories, July 1937.
The following is from a tale by Robert Heinlein. Which one? Send your answer to firstname.lastname@example.org.
...On Venus no one swims; there is no water fit to swim in. Venus has no moon to pile up tides; the solar tide disturbs her waters but little. The waters never freeze, never approach the critical 4-degree C. which causes terrestrial lakes and streams and ponds to turn over and 'ventilate'. The planet is almost free of weather in the boisterous sense. Her waters lie placid on their surface - and accumulate vileness underneath, by the year, by the generation, by the eon...
For the answer see Tale-To-Author.
...Between enormous top branches as thick as the trunks of adult Earth-trees he went down like a drifting leaf, hit ground with enough force to leave heel marks in the coarse turf.
point was little more than a mile from the rim of the great plain. The
gigantic trees were thinned out here, growing widely apart with quiet,
cathedral-like glades between them. Fifty or sixty miles westward the
real Venusian jungle began, and with it the multitudinous bad-dream
forms of ferocity that only lately had learned to keep their distance
from the even deadlier form called Man....