Name this sci-fi short story...

A dead planet is discovered.
It died with the death of it’s sun.
The sun winking out is correlated in time to have occured at the same time as the birth of Jesus of Nazareth.
Thus the star of Bethlehem is the distant sun dying.

The point of the story, if I remember correctly, was to juxtapose the arrival of the saviour with the death of a world not too dissimilar to earth.

Can anyone help me remember the author of this short story? Ta!

The Star by Arthur C. Clarke

My, you’re fast! And thank you thank you, I’ve been looking for this for ages.

Six minutes. Not one of our better times.

I thought I remember that story as a New Twilight Zone episode (and of course I did:, otherwise I wouldn’t have posted this :stuck_out_tongue: )
I think they used a date of 0 or 1 AD in that episode, or some other exact date, which really irked me since the date of Christ’s Birth is only an guestimate, possibly 3 BC or so… (yeah, yeah, just go with the premise)

Seriously. I blame the election, we’re all distracted. Sorry, nootlin, we’ll step it up next time.

I have another one:

An ENORMOUS spaceship is tooling around the galaxy. Whenever they encounter another spaceship, they offer to weld the ship to their own and add the crew to the community. This spaceship has been around for longer than anyone can remember, and people themselves live for hundreds of years, because their bodies are so good at repairing themselves – they ball up into a cocoon and their body heals, and they wake up a few months later, smaller but healthy.

Hundreds of “captains” are needed to run the ship. At some point, they discover a planet at the center of their enormous ship. They make plans to land some of the “best” captains on that planet to explore it.


Thanks for your help. I would love to read this story again.

I think this is “Marrow” by Robert Reed

Sure sounds like it. Reed’s a great under-appreciated writer, by the way.

Thanks, guys. The plot for Marrow sounds dead on, but I am sure that the story I read was a short story, or at least a short novel, in an anthology. Also I am pretty sure I read it before 2000. Do you think Mr. Reed wrote a precursor? Or perhaps an editted version appeared in the anthology.

I have reserved an anthology at my local library – we’ll see.

Thanks again.

The short version of it was published in SF Age in 1997 and anthologized several times (see here for details

Great! I have high hopes for the book I ordered from the library.