Hart Schmidt, Ambassador Abumwe's B-Team diplomatic aide, is on his home planet of Phoenix for a Harvest Day visit with his family. His politically active and powerful family is by no means convinced that their youngest son is making the best use of his talents as a low-ranking diplomat for the Colonial Union. Hart loves his family, but he's quickly reminded that it's not just the distances involved that cause him to limit his visits to the annual Harvest Day holiday. As he struggles with the normal family dysfunction around him, his father takes him aside and makes him an offer--if he'll just resign from the diplomatic corps and come home for good--that's awfully hard to refuse.
Hart, whom we normally see mainly as a secondary character and Harry Wilson's foil, is center stage here, re-evaluating his life and making critical decisions about his values, his career, and his future direction.
I bought this story.