MISC: The Girl Who Saved the World Part 25

George Phillies phillies at 4liberty.net
Sat Jan 23 12:30:23 PST 2016

Now, the unholy trio are from Alt.Er.Net Nit.I.verse  they were meant as 
a tribute to all and sundry.

And now, back to Eclipse, The Girl Who Saved The World

“Ah, yes, the original agenda. Eclipse and how she escaped. Is there an 
issue here?”  The Ambassadors glowered.  “Valkyria,” Holmgren said, “Can 
you add anything to what happened afterward?”

“Rolf,” she answered, her use of the first name reminding her audience 
of the ill-kept secret that she was also Lindgren’s mistress, or perhaps 
the other way around, “there is a written report with video support, 
which hopefully all of you have had time to study.  Let me, however, 
note that the broadcast video of my conversation with the Bearer does 
not completely agree with what I remember her saying. The actual events 
appeared to be a scenario that we’d examined very thoroughly, namely the 
‘polite declines to cooperate’ option.  The plan was not perfect. I 
believe one of Markgraf Moeller’s excellent volumes on tactics treats 
plan failure.  The first failure was that the Bearer does not look like 
all the drawings we are distributing.  She’s considerably shorter than I 
am, enough that at first I thought she was not the Bearer, and could not 
imagine who she was. It did not help that the Maze was doing time 
distortion, so that my teleport to St. Brendan’s Isle took some hours to 
complete.  Based on Eclipse’s actions in the Maze, we thought we had a 
good estimate of her gifts, namely close to none.  We appeared on 
Atlanticea with what should have been overwhelming strength. The ancient 
American aphorism is ‘If a company seems enough, send in a division. 
That way no one gets hurt.’ We’ve had time to do a complete 
reconstruction.  Eclipse was a solid target, not an illusion.   Most 
attacks on Eclipse found their target.  All six of my team drains were 
drawing at full capacity.  Lady Sylph is emphatically certain: The 
Screaming Skull hit Eclipse with his death command.  I hit her with the 
Katana of Justice. All that, and Eclipse’s defenses did not go down.”

“She used the Namestone?” Elizaveta Romanoff asked. The Russian 
Ambassador’s interruption was only almost a question.

“The Copper Book of Harvest Stars is completely clear,” Valkyria 
answered calmly.  “The Wizard of Mars agrees, a very expensive question 
to have answered.  The Bearer needs several days to mesh with 
Namestone’s powers. Until then, Namestone supplies a few cosmetic 
tricks, no more. Observe that Eclipse’s garb was immaculate. That was 
all the Namestone did for her.  No, Eclipse stood up to us using her own 
shields. If she had a team backing her, they did a darn fine job of 
remaining invisible the whole time, not to mention fooling six Drains 
and a Seer. I am less bothered that we didn’t take her down, and more 
bothered that the Screaming Skull didn’t appear to have discomfitted 
her. Perhaps I should also be bothered that she did not give the Martyr 
her private persona name. The Copper Book says that that is a 
requirement for being given the Namestone. Somehow she managed to dodge 
answering his question.”

“Someone who stands up to the Skull? Is there such a person?” Legate 
Hong asked.

Valkyria rested her chin on her fingertips. “Other Lords of Eternity. A 
few persona from ancient history.   The Goetic Knights wore enchanted 
armor, armor superior to mine.  The Marik Master of Parades supposedly 
wore the Invincible Sigil of the Eternal Procession. This Eclipse person 
is none of the above. However, manifestly, there is such a person, 
because I hit her square on with the Katana of Justice, and during the 
explosion her force field did not waver.”

“If I may?”  Prince Wang, ambassador of the Celestial Republic of the 
Han, rarely spoke. “We are not, Valkyria excepted, masters of the art of 
battle strategy. We should give those who are masters of battle our 
thoughts, not spend time chatting about tactics as the amateurs we are. 
   However, I believe I see why we missed the range of her gifts.  She 
neglected to use them.  She did not quite attain the ultimate feat of 
brilliancy ‘defeat your enemy without doing anything’, but she was 
parsimonious in her choice of methods.  While in the Maze, she never 
teleported, mostly showed human resistance to heat and cold, played City 
of Steel well but not brilliantly.  Until we attempted to kill her, she 
could have been a very well trained ungifted woman.  Twenties perhaps 
sounds young. She might have a touch of the gift of agelessness. 
Perhaps Valkyria can explain what I am missing.”

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