A galaxy tale. Creative-Commons.
Moldan the Big of Bog awoke with a start; he had dreamt that he was a hundred; he was a hundred, that very day, which meant decision time.
Most Boggians lived to be at least a hundred and twenty. Every Boggian - not just the Bigs and the Lesses of Bog - had, on their hundredth birthdays, and for eight days thereafter, the option of entering a decelerator. This might kill them, or effectively take them back to their fiftieth birthdays. For the one and a half per cent who did not come out of the machines alive, death was sudden and apparently painless. Seventy four per cent of the ordinary citizens of Bog chose not to decelerate; but Moldan the Big was not an ordinary citizen. He was supreme ruler of his planet. He had, during the days of Steefax Draxy Mania, travelled the galaxy. He had negotiated trade and peace treaties with the likes of Kryptos and Ee-arth. He was big in name and in reputation. He was generally thought to be the very greatest of the Bigs of Bog.