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Set TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture (of 1958, that is), the plot centers around Clifford "Kip" Russell, a young man who wins a used space suit by writing a whole bunch of advertising jingles for Skyway Soap. (He was hoping to win a trip to the moon. The spacesuit was the consolation prize.) After spending a great deal of time and energy restoring it, Kip decides to sell the spacesuit to help pay for college. He takes it for a final drive first -- unfortunately, this results in him being kidnapped by a voracious alien he ends up calling Wormface. The alien is also holding captive a little genius girl named Peewee and a strange, mink-like creature Kip calls the [[StarfishAliens "Mother Thing"]].

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Set TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture (of 1958, that is), the plot centers around Clifford "Kip" Russell, a young man who wins a used space suit by writing writes a whole bunch of advertising jingles for Skyway Soap. (He was Soap, hoping to win a trip to the moon. The spacesuit was the consolation prize.) Moon. He doesn't come in first, but close enough to it to win a spacesuit. After spending a great deal of time and energy restoring it, Kip decides to sell the spacesuit suit to help pay for college. He takes it for a final drive first -- unfortunately, this results in him being kidnapped by a voracious alien he ends up calling Wormface. The alien is also holding captive a little genius girl named Peewee and a strange, mink-like creature Kip calls the [[StarfishAliens "Mother Thing"]].



* ArtisticLicenseHistory: Invoked in-universe. The alien court only very slowly realizes that their captured Neanderthal is not related to modern humanity.
** ScienceMarchesOn: ...while the modern genetic studies show that Neanderthals ''are'' related to us -- we've simply assimilated them.

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* ArtisticLicenseHistory: Invoked in-universe. The alien court only very slowly realizes that their captured Neanderthal is not related ancestor to modern humanity.
** ScienceMarchesOn: ...while the modern genetic studies show that some Neanderthals ''are'' related to us in our ancestry -- we've simply assimilated them.



* BrattyHalfPint: Peewee. Not as bad as some examples, but she's got all the hallmarks.

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* BrattyHalfPint: Peewee. Not as bad as some examples, but she's got all the hallmarks. She even invokes it.
-->'''Peewee''': Daddy said ''"No!"'' and Mama said ''"Good gracious, no!"''...and so I went. I can be an awful nuisance when I put my mind on it. I have talent for it. Daddy says I'm an amoral little wretch.\\
'''Kip''': Uh, do you suppose he might be right?\\
'''Peewee''': Oh, I'm sure he is. He understands me, whereas Mama throws up her hands and says she can't cope. I was perfectly beastly and unbearable for two whole weeks and at last Daddy said "for Blank's sake let her go!--maybe we'll collect her insurance!" So I did.



* ICallItVera: Oscar

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* ICallItVera: OscarOscar.



* LittleStowaway: Peewee

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* %%* LittleStowaway: Peewee



* PsychicPowers: The Mother Thing communicates partially by song, partially by empathic projection.

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* PsychicPowers: The Mother Thing communicates partially by song, partially by some undefinable form of empathic projection.



* SecondPrize: The Spacesuit

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* SecondPrize: The SpacesuitKip sends in the winning jingle in the advertising contest...but it turns out a whole bunch of people came up with it also, and their place in the hierarchy of prizes is determined by postmark dates. Kip gets the titular spacesuit.



* SpaceIsCold: Averted. Kip points out that the main temperature problem in a spacesuit is getting rid of the wearer's body's heat, not freezing to death. The surface of Pluto on the other hand ''is'' really cold.

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* SpaceIsCold: Averted. Kip points out that the main temperature problem in a spacesuit is getting rid of the wearer's body's heat, not freezing to death. The surface of Pluto Pluto, on the other hand hand, ''is'' really cold.



* {{Zeerust}}: Navigating the stars...with a slide rule. As in many of Heinlein's juveniles, the setting is a strange (to modern readers) ultramodern version of the 1950s -- live primetime TV and soda fountains in drugstores coexist with orbital space stations and interplanetary flight. [[note]]Slide rules are practically Heinlein's calling card. It'd probably be faster to list the books of his that don't have "slide rule" or "slip stick" mentioned somewhere. He used the term "slipstick" so regularly, whole generations of his fans are growing up with the erroneous notion that people who used slide rules on a daily basis actually ''called'' them that.[[/note]]

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* {{Zeerust}}: Navigating the stars...with a slide rule. As in many of Heinlein's juveniles, the setting is a strange (to modern readers) ultramodern version of the 1950s -- live primetime TV and soda fountains in drugstores coexist with orbital space stations and interplanetary flight. [[note]]Slide rules are practically Heinlein's calling card. It'd probably be faster to list the books of his that don't have "slide rule" or "slip stick" "slipstick" mentioned somewhere. He used the term "slipstick" so regularly, whole generations of his fans are growing up with the erroneous notion that people who used slide rules on a daily basis actually ''called'' them that.[[/note]]


* ChekhovsSkill: The first chapter is mainly about Kip's father encouraging him to study higher levels of math and science than what is taught at his high school. Most of this comes in handy later, like when Kip manages to prove that the base he is in is in fact on Pluto. He also studies both Latin and Spanish, and Iunio the Centurion whom he meets later speaks a hybrid of the two.[[note]]While [[{{RealityIsUnrealistic}}this may seem contrived]], it's {{TruthInTelevision}}, since Roman generals were often given land in the newer Roman province of Hispania.[[/note]]

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* ChekhovsSkill: The first chapter is mainly about Kip's father encouraging him to study higher levels of math and science than what is taught at his high school. Most of this comes in handy later, like when Kip manages to prove that the base he is in is in fact on Pluto. He also studies both Latin and Spanish, and Iunio the Centurion whom he meets later speaks a hybrid of the two.[[note]]While [[{{RealityIsUnrealistic}}this [[RealityIsUnrealistic this may seem contrived]], it's {{TruthInTelevision}}, TruthInTelevision, since Roman generals were often given land in the newer Roman province of Hispania.[[/note]]


* SeparatedByACommonLanguage: Kip knows enough Latin to attempt to talk to Iunio when they first meet. Unfortunately, the Latin he knows is a world away from the Latin ''Iunio'' knows, which means Kip's barely comprehensible and accidentally insults him in the bargain--calling him "friend" is heavily implied to be an accidental proposition or at least extremely over-familiar.

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* SeparatedByACommonLanguage: Kip knows enough Latin to attempt to talk to Iunio when they first meet. Unfortunately, the Latin he knows is a world away from the Latin ''Iunio'' knows, which means Kip's barely comprehensible and accidentally insults him in the bargain--calling him "friend" is heavily implied to be an accidental proposition or at least extremely over-familiar. Luckily, they work it out later.

Added DiffLines:

* SeparatedByACommonLanguage: Kip knows enough Latin to attempt to talk to Iunio when they first meet. Unfortunately, the Latin he knows is a world away from the Latin ''Iunio'' knows, which means Kip's barely comprehensible and accidentally insults him in the bargain--calling him "friend" is heavily implied to be an accidental proposition or at least extremely over-familiar.


Kip, Peewee, and the Mother Thing find themselves in Wormface and his fellow aliens' secret base on the moon and manage to escape, albeit briefly. After the failed attempt, the wormfaces decide to move the prisoners to an even more remote base on Pluto. There, the Mother Thing atempts an escape by setting up a beacon to contact her people, but seems to be fatally injured before she can activate the beacon. Kip completes the task and ends up almost dead himself. It turns out she was fine -- her species isn't bothered at all by being frozen solid, other than the not being able to move part.

to:

Kip, Peewee, and the Mother Thing find themselves in Wormface and his fellow aliens' secret base on the moon and manage to escape, albeit briefly. After the failed attempt, the wormfaces decide to move the prisoners to an even more remote base on Pluto. There, the Mother Thing atempts attempts an escape by setting up a beacon to contact her people, but seems to be fatally injured before she can activate the beacon. Kip completes the task and ends up almost dead himself. It turns out she was fine -- her species isn't bothered at all by being frozen solid, other than the not being able to move part.


* ShipperOnDeck: [[spoiler:Peewee's dad says she's "fond" of Kip. And suggests he visit semi-regularly. And mentions how Kip's dad ended up marrying his most brilliant student. It's pretty clear he expects some sparks to fly when Peewee is old enough.]]

to:

* ShipperOnDeck: [[spoiler:Peewee's dad says she's "fond" of Kip. And suggests he visit semi-regularly. And mentions how Kip's dad ended up marrying his most brilliant student. It's pretty clear he expects some sparks to fly when [[WifeHusbandry Peewee is old enough.]]]]]]


* ShipperOnDeck: [[spoiler:Peewee's dad says she's "fond" of Kip. And suggests he visit semi-regularly. And mentions how Kip's dad ended up marrying his most brilliant student. It's pretty clear he expects some sparks to fly when PeeWee is old enough.]]

to:

* ShipperOnDeck: [[spoiler:Peewee's dad says she's "fond" of Kip. And suggests he visit semi-regularly. And mentions how Kip's dad ended up marrying his most brilliant student. It's pretty clear he expects some sparks to fly when PeeWee Peewee is old enough.]]


* ShipperPnDeck: [[spoiler:Peewee's dad says she's "fond" of Kip. And suggests he visit semi-regularly. And mentions how Kip's dad ended up marrying his most brilliant student. It's pretty clear he expects some sparks to fly when PeeWee is old enough.]]

to:

* ShipperPnDeck: ShipperOnDeck: [[spoiler:Peewee's dad says she's "fond" of Kip. And suggests he visit semi-regularly. And mentions how Kip's dad ended up marrying his most brilliant student. It's pretty clear he expects some sparks to fly when PeeWee is old enough.]]

Added DiffLines:

* ShipperPnDeck: [[spoiler:Peewee's dad says she's "fond" of Kip. And suggests he visit semi-regularly. And mentions how Kip's dad ended up marrying his most brilliant student. It's pretty clear he expects some sparks to fly when PeeWee is old enough.]]

Added DiffLines:

* LockingMacGyverInTheStoreCupboard: The Mother Thing manages to persuade the Wormfaces to let her have access to the workshops on their base on Pluto. This does not end well for the Wormfaces, as even under close supervision she manages to sneak enough spare parts for herself to build an [[SubspaceAnsible FTL communications transmitter]] to call for help from her own people...and a couple of bombs powerful enough to wreck the entire base.
-->'''Kip:''' (narrating) She got the run of their shops by baiting their cupidity. Her people had many things that wormfaces had not--gadgets, inventions, contrivances. She began by inquiring why they did a thing this way rather than another way which was so much more efficient? A tradition? Or religious reasons?
-->When asked what she meant she looked helpless and protested that she couldn't ''explain''--which was a shame because it was so easy to build, too.


In what may be the quintessential Heinlein ending, [[spoiler: mankind wins the right to live, everyone gets home safe ''with'' scientific proof of their adventure, and Kip gets a free ride to MIT.]]

to:

In what may be the quintessential Heinlein ending, [[spoiler: mankind wins the right to live, everyone gets home safe ''with'' scientific proof of their adventure, and Kip gets a free ride to MIT.]]
MIT.


* SorryToInterrupt: While being held prisoner on the Moon, Kip enters Peewee's room and finds her crying. She doesn't notice him, so he sneaks out and then starts to head back while making a lot of noise so she can hear him coming and hide the fact that she was crying.

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* SorryToInterrupt: While being held prisoner (comfortably) on the Moon, an alien planet, Kip enters Peewee's room and finds her crying. She doesn't notice him, so he sneaks out and then starts to head back while making a lot of noise so she can hear him coming and hide the fact that she was crying.


Fortunately, they are rescued and Kip receives advanced medical treatment by the Mother Thing's people. Unfortunately, the Mother Thing's people like to [[HumanityOnTrial judge new races]] to see if it's safe to let them join galactic society. Kip finds himself called upon to [[PleadingTheHumanCase defend humanity's right to exist]] alongside a [[AllCavemenWereNeanderthals dumb Neanderthal]] and [[FantasticRacism racist Roman legionnaire]] Iunio brought millennia into the future to account for all of human history.

to:

Fortunately, they are rescued and Kip receives advanced medical treatment by the Mother Thing's people. Unfortunately, the Mother Thing's people like to [[HumanityOnTrial judge new races]] to see if it's safe to let them join galactic society. Kip finds himself called upon to [[PleadingTheHumanCase defend humanity's right to exist]] alongside a [[AllCavemenWereNeanderthals dumb Neanderthal]] and a [[FantasticRacism racist Roman legionnaire]] Iunio named Iunio, who were brought millennia into the future to account for all of human history.


Fortunately, they are rescued and Kip receives advanced medical treatment by the Mother Thing's people. Unfortunately, the Mother Thing's people like to [[HumanityOnTrial judge new races]] to see if it's safe to let them join galactic society. Kip finds himself called upon to [[PleadingTheHumanCase defend humanity's right to exist]] alongside a [[AllCavemenWereNeanderthals dumb Neanderthal]] and a [[FantasticRacism racist Roman legionnaire]] brought millennia into the future to account for all of human history.

to:

Fortunately, they are rescued and Kip receives advanced medical treatment by the Mother Thing's people. Unfortunately, the Mother Thing's people like to [[HumanityOnTrial judge new races]] to see if it's safe to let them join galactic society. Kip finds himself called upon to [[PleadingTheHumanCase defend humanity's right to exist]] alongside a [[AllCavemenWereNeanderthals dumb Neanderthal]] and a [[FantasticRacism racist Roman legionnaire]] Iunio brought millennia into the future to account for all of human history.


Fortunately, they are rescued and Kip receives advanced medical treatment by the Mother Thing's people. Unfortunately, the Mother Thing's people like to [[HumanityOnTrial judge new races]] to see if it's safe to let them join galactic society. Kip finds himself called upon to [[PleadingTheHumanCase defend humanity's right to exist]]... along with a [[AllCavemenWereNeanderthals dumb Neanderthal]] and a [[FantasticRacism racist Roman legionnaire]] brought millennia into the future to account for all of human history.

to:

Fortunately, they are rescued and Kip receives advanced medical treatment by the Mother Thing's people. Unfortunately, the Mother Thing's people like to [[HumanityOnTrial judge new races]] to see if it's safe to let them join galactic society. Kip finds himself called upon to [[PleadingTheHumanCase defend humanity's right to exist]]... along with exist]] alongside a [[AllCavemenWereNeanderthals dumb Neanderthal]] and a [[FantasticRacism racist Roman legionnaire]] brought millennia into the future to account for all of human history.

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