I need help finding a short story/excerpt I remember reading in a "best of sci-fi year?" omnibus

I remember the setting being about a future great game between great powers involving Great Britain, which the main character is a citizen and soldier (mention of a "dragoons?" uniform) of. He visits a embassy on a mission and sees a girl that is a special type of person that can lock information in their subconscious. That's vaguely what I remember.

  • This reads like the 'blurb for Catherine Drewe by Paul Cornell. I have it as an ebook but haven't yet read it so am reluctant to go online for more details in case I spoil it for myself!
    – Danny Mc G
    Jul 17, 2017 at 5:16
  • Do you know were i can purchase the ebook? Edit: Nevermind found it, thank you very much bellatrix.
    – Wiztaculer
    Jul 17, 2017 at 5:20
  • He has other stories set in the same alternate universe. I've got three but so far have only read what I think is the second one "One of our Bsta*ds is Missing"
    – Danny Mc G
    Jul 17, 2017 at 5:33
  • Its called the Johnathan Hamilton series
    – Wiztaculer
    Jul 17, 2017 at 5:37

1 Answer 1


"Catherine Drewe", a short story by Paul Cornell, appeared in the anthology The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy, 2009 Edition edited by Richard Horton. The story is available for free here.

Excerpts from story (emphasis added):

The Porters, in all their multitudes, ran out of their lodge as he cut the engine and sailed into the quad, but the sight of the Fourth Dragoons badge had them doffing their caps and applauding.

[. . . .]

“This thing will tip the balance. You can’t be the only one who’s intuited it’s here. Whoever gets it gains a decisive advantage. It’ll be the end of the Great Game—”

  • Can you explain why this is the correct answer?
    – Valorum
    Jul 17, 2017 at 6:14
  • As I mentioned in comments I have this story but it's still in my TBR stack. I only went by the OP description and it matching the 'blurb I have for that story. I'm reluctant to go deep into finding all the key points as that would be a spoiler for me.
    – Danny Mc G
    Jul 17, 2017 at 6:51

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