Daniel Pedersen

Death-Row Debate

Four years ago, Darlie Routier had platinum hair, fake nails and artificially enlarged breasts. Those bad-girl looks helped convict the 27-year-old suburban housewife of murdering her two small children.

The Sub Finally Rises

On the night of Feb. 17, 1864, the Confederate Navy introduced the art of stealth technology to naval warfare. As the Union blockade of Charleston suffocated the South Carolina port, the rebels unleashed a "porpoise." At least that's what officers on the USS Housatonic thought they saw rippling toward them in the dark.

The Rivers Of Death

The full impact of Hurricane Floyd came home to Weldon Hobbs when he saw the caskets floating down his street. Hobbs, 64, lives in Trenton, N.C., a town that straddles the Trent River about 40 miles from North Carolina's Atlantic coast.

A Whole New Game

Pro athletes once had little power beyond the bulging muscles in their arms and legs. Not anymore. Hockey's Mario Lemieux and basketball's Isiah Thomas are both crossing over to the other side of sports' great and contentious divide between Athlete and Owner.

Is Your Hmo Too Stingy?

Anne Berends, a Dallas art teacher, felt too exhausted to go home from the hospital after delivering her first child last summer. She had endured 28 hours of labor, a forceps delivery and a heavy loss of blood.

Sprawling, Sprawling ...

The sales brochures don't lie, because they show you a picture, a sweeping aerial view of forest stretching toward the distant skyline of Atlanta from the vicinity of vinings estates, from high $200s-500s.

The Garage That Ate Tucson

Bob and Maria Alexander have their own end-of-century American dream. It takes the earthly form of a four-car garage. Bob, 41, owner of a clothing company, drives a sports car that once fit neatly beside his wife's wagon in their two-car garage in North Miami Beach, Fla.

Stranded And Fuming

AS CONTAGIONS GO, THIS ONE WAS virulent. American Airlines had to cancel 90 flights on the first day its supposedly under-the-weather pilots called in sick . . .

Tragedy In A Small Place

"The Basketball Diaries" MAY not have been 14-year-old Michael Carneal's favorite movie. But one scene in particular stayed with the awkward Paducah, Ky., freshman: a young character's narcotic-tinged dream of striding into his school, pulling a sh otgun from a black leather coat and opening fire.

A Prince As Parent

DIANA, PRINCESS OF WALES, was an avid consumer of the racy British tabloids. Prince Charles, on the other hand, has long insisted that he doesn't read the popular press and privately scoffs that reporters are ""pests'' and ""hacks.'' So it came as a bit of a surprise two weeks ago when the prince, dressed in shirt sleeves, wandered back from his first-class cabin to talk to reporters flying with him on a royal trip to Africa.

A Life-Or-Death Choice?

Soon Americans will probably be able to decide whether they want to turn their airbags on or off. As two very different tragedies show, the consequences of that decision couldn't be more grave.IF WE COULD CHANGE WHAT happened to Becky Tebbetts, an 18-year-old college student, late one night in 1991, where would we start?

Too Poor to Treat

NINETY-SIX-POINT-THREE is the frequency of Justus Upton's favorite radio station in Jackson, Miss. It's also, by macabre coincidence, exactly how low his body temperature fell in 1995 until he took a drug called Zovirax.

Dissing Customers

CLAES FORNELL'S LATEST HORROR story began with one of life's little jolts. "Sorry, your flight's been canceled," said the gate attendant Detroit. Fornell had booked a seat on Northwest Airlines' Flight 68, departing Detroit at 5:40 p.m.

'Garden' Party

THE BEE WRANGLERS ARE HAVing a time of it. Wranglers on a movie set normally handle the animals, and the script for "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil" calls for live horseflies to be tethered on sewing thread to an eccentric character's sweater.

Some Hope For College

IT WAS A CATCHY IDEA, BUT BILL Clinton was having a hard time selling it. Last winter, when the president and his aides were scrounging up possible ""values'' themes for the '96 campaign, making college tuition tax-deductible was high on the list.

A Stogie Warning

WHO IS BURIED IN GRANT'S TOMB? the answer is not a premium box of panatellas-although that would be a good guess. The National Cancer Institute (NCI), troubled by a sudden resurgence of cigar smoking in the 1990s, bas just begun work on a 150-page report on all the known data about the health risks of America's latest bad habit.

Crossing Over

IT'S HARD TO SURPRISE CHURCH trustees anymore. They know how to deal with divorced clergy or ministers plagued by a crisis of faith. They're slowly coming to terms with noncelibate homosexuals in the pulpit.

A Time For Bombing

THE BOMB DIDN'T KILL ANYONE, BUT its political effect was devastating. The explosion shattered windows at a shopping mall in Manchester, in Britain's industrial heartland, injuring more than 200 people and perhaps mortally wounding the Northern Ireland peace talks, which began only five days before.

Giving O.J. A Platform

OXFORD UNIVERSITY'S 173-YEAR-OLD debating society, the Oxford Union, takes pride in searching the globe for important speakers. Mother Teresa and Archbishop Desmond Tutu have obliged.

Diana's Battle Royal

LET US PAUSE now, briefly, to recall the Wedding of the Century: the hushed magnificence of St. Paul's on that perfect summer's day, the solemn medal-strewn groom and his radiant bride, the equerries and trumpet flourishes.

'I Won't Go Quietly'

It's been half a century since Television started to become a central part of the human experience, and for much of that time it's seemed more a curse than a blessing.

Was Queen Victoria A Bastard?

It is difficult to imagine a more formidable woman, in any age, than Queen Victoria. Empress of India and grandmother to Europe, she was fecund (nine children, 35 grandchildren, including monarchs of Russia, Germany, Spain and Greece) and formal (to the end of her days, she allowed her physician to examine her only by asking questions at a distance).

Major Gamble

British political journalists hate sunshine. It makes them ill. Their natural environment is a dark, smoky bar, deep in the bowels of the Palace of Westminster, where they plot and connive with the embittered, twisted, ambitious and just plain bitchy M.P.s with whom they are locked in a devil's embrace.

Turbulence In Ireland

Say GPA to most Americans, and they're apt to think of their college grades. But say GPA to bankers these days, and hearts will skip a beat all the way from New York to Tokyo, with stopovers in the financial capitals of Europe.

Dissecting The British Voter

And you think American voters are disgusted? Try Britain, where one third of the electorate can't make up its mind. Only days before the April 9 general elections, the race between Conservative Prime Minister John Major and Labor leader Neil Kinnock was too close to call.

'Bitchier Than Usual'

At last: 16 months after succeeding Margaret Thatcher with the promise of a kinder, gentler Toryism, and nearly a year after his public approval soared in the wake of Britain's contribution to the Persian Gulf War, John Major called an election.