Next I'll whip it into shape for Baen and send it to them. That will mean a 9-12 month wait while it flops around their slush pile.
It's a little depressing. Yesterday I dared to let myself think a few happy thoughts about the submission, because no one who has read it has had anything bad to say about it.
Castalia didn't say anything other than "we'll pass" and "feel free to submit again", but their submissions page mentions that they don't offer advice or reasons, and they also promise to have an answer to the prospective author as quickly as possible. And to be honest a rejection is a rejection, whether or not the editor explains why he rejected the story. It still stings, regardless.
The rejection letter for "The Fallers" explained their decision to me, and in some ways was worse than the terse rejection from Castalia, because it sounded like they almost decided to publish it...where Castalia just said "No thanks, maybe next time."
Still, *sigh*. Well, nothing worthwhile is accomplished easily.