“The Veil of Astellar,” Leigh Brackett, 1943 – An alienated human hijacks a ship of passengers and leads them to a slaughter by “superior” alien vampires who inhabit the Bermuda triangle-like “Veil.”
Comments: A disturbing story concerning the devaluation of humans, the absence of empathy, and despair. References to euthanasia and the inadequacy of language and communication. On my first read, I thought of the Holocaust. Others have read it differently. This story is collected in Lorelei of the Red Mist; in a review of that collection, Paul de Filippo describes the story as his favorite, noting that it features “spaceflight, immortality, an alien succubus, self-sacrifice and virginal innocence.” (Paul Di Filippo, SciFi Weekly, March 10, 2008)
Author: Wikipedia: “Leigh Douglass Brackett (December 7, 1915 – March 18, 1978) was an American author, particularly of science fiction. She was also a screenwriter, known for her work on famous films such as The Big Sleep (1945), Rio Bravo (1959), The Long Goodbye (1973) and The Empire Strikes Back (1980).” Brackett was married to fellow science fiction writer, Edmond Hamilton.