The anti-hero of the story, Theodore Honey, is engaged in research on the fatigue of aluminium airframes. His current project, overseen by Dr. Dennis Scott, is to investigate possible failure in the high aspect ratio tailplane of a new airliner, the fictional Rutland Reindeer. Honey, a widower, in addition to his work, must bring up his young daughter, Elspeth. The events are narrated by Scott in the first person.
Honey is unimpressive in appearance and is so intensely focused on his work that his relations with the outside world—never that good to begin with—suffer badly. Throughout the story, people judge him by that appearance, or by his varied and unconventional outside interests, such as pyramidology—the study of possible esoteric interpretations of the Pyramids.
Copyright: Public Domain in Canada