In middle school, About 16 years ago I read a soft paper back anthology with two stories I remember in great detail.

The first was about a biologist studying a miraculous worm from some alien world that had at least ten different sexes and their mating habits for the reproduction cycle.

The second story included a security detail looking for a high priority individual whose SOS went off in an offline space station.

Inside was a massive medical experimentation facility that had been corrupted and sentient. With one room full of sheets of skin of varying shade's. Roamed by cultivator Autons that would Shred them to piece with the Mantid like blades used to harvest the skin for grafting.

I can't find it anywhere and I'd be very greatful for any insights to titles.

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  • Hi, welcome to SF&F. Do you happen to remember any details of the cover art?
    – DavidW
    May 15 at 21:59
  • For the record, paramecium(s) have ten sexes. No scifi required :-)
    – Valorum
    May 15 at 21:59
  • 1
    Were the terms "autons" and "mantid-like blades" actually found in the story?
    – Valorum
    May 15 at 22:01
  • 1
    Were the worms intelligent? What was "miraculous" about them? Could they work healing miracles, or what? Was the biologist a man or a woman? Was he or she studying them on their native planet?
    – user14111
    May 15 at 22:04
  • 1
    Was the "high priority individual" a wanted criminal, or an important dignitary that the security detail was supposed to protect? What is a "cultivator" "Auton"?
    – user14111
    May 15 at 22:06


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