I think it was a short story in a 1950s-era anthology. All I remember was that a young woman was tortured (her hands crippled) for information, and someone (maybe a different person) was able to detonate a nuclear device destroying the evil regime and thereby freeing the rest of society. It ends mentioning some type of memorial plaque honoring the person.

  • Hi, welcome to SF&F. You wouldn't happen to recall what the cover looked like?
    – DavidW
    Commented Jul 3 at 4:02
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  • IIRC the bomb wasn't nuclear, though.
    – Ben Bolker
    Commented Jul 3 at 19:47
  • (But the main characters were trying to prevent the Big Bad from detonating a nuclear device ...)
    – Ben Bolker
    Commented Jul 3 at 20:20
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    For the record (in case of future duplicate votes), there is a comment from the OP "Yes! That’s it! Thank you!" on Occam Shave's answer below. Unfortunately, the comment was deleted by a flag from another user, and even mods are unable to delete it.
    – Rand al'Thor
    Commented Jul 4 at 19:28

1 Answer 1


This sounds like "Gulf" by Robert Heinlein.

The crime lord matriarch tortures a girl in this way to extract information.

The bomb that kills her after a long story also kills Joe Greene, while the guards kill his trainer and new wife Gail.

They announced their marriage to each other telepathically just before they were killed.

Joe, in all his severe training, had not been able to become telepathic until just that final moment.

The plaque honors them and their mission, as well as their marriage, by name.


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