MISC: The Girl Who Saved the World Part 72

George Phillies phillies at 4liberty.net
Mon Jun 11 19:44:47 PDT 2018

“Daughters and their spears,” Teranike said, “is our version. Mentioning 
boys, here comes Joe, just too late.”


The InvisibleFortress


January 23, 2018

There finally came the day on which I really did not feel sick. The 
change happened all at once. The bruises had gone away. Medico swore up 
and down that the broken ribs had been re-knitted as good as new. My 
shoulder gave me a twinge of pain if I picked up something really heavy, 
but Medico said everything was actually all right, except I would have 
to live with discomfort for a few months. That was going to be 
interesting tomorrow, when I go back to weight training.

It was very much time to re-appear at Kniaz Kang’s for breakfast, have 
pleasant conversations with normal people, and be on my way. The weather 
report for North Cosmopolis, which through some historical peculiarity 
is well inland and north of the great port city of Cosmopolis, said 
heavy snow had ended. I carefully checked my Joe disguise and slipped 
into a long winter coat and insulated gloves.It was a bit hard to hide 
that Joe teleports, not unless he walked in to Kniaz Kang’s from the 
woods at the edge of town, but his other gifts could perfectly well stay 
hidden. I wouldn’t be cold, but Joe pretended that he needed a winter 
outfit. A complicated loop of teleport jumps brought me to line of sight 
behind the restaurant and its registered teleport landing pads. The pads 
were circles of pavement, each three yards across, laid out like giant 
flowers on each side of a spinal walk.They had thoughtfully all been 
shovelled already.I’d have to thank Teranike, who did a remarkable 
amount of heavy lifting for a somewhat minimal salary. Of course, when 
you are a Polarian, and a decade older than I am, you view shovelling 
many cubic yards of snow to be light physical training.

My laser pointer was at hand.I tagged the rearmost pad, saw the clear 
light come up on the adjoining service post, and teleported the last 
hundred yards.Yes, I could have skipped tagging, but then someone else 
might have teleported to the same landing point at the same time, with 
unpleasant results, at least for them, me being one hundred per cent at 
fault.This way, any reasonable person would check the interweb, find the 
point was momentarily in use, and wait until it was free.

I was halfway down the walk when warning lights came up on all six pads. 
Not three seconds later, what had to be half the Washington State 
Persona League appeared all around me.I froze, about to panic. Fight or 
flight both sounded really bad, when all I wanted was someone else’s 
cooking. Then I realized that none of them had force fields up.

“Hi!” That was Lady Barbara, their lead mentalist, her garb the 
traditional mentalist dark green trim on cream.“Sorry if we startled 
you. We’re just here for an early breakfast.”

“Hi,” I mumbled.“Not a problem.” I moved very quickly down the walk, 
conscious that a stack of heavy-duty personae was two paces behind me. 
GR, I had seen them eating here before. We were far enough from Seattle 
that there was a shortage of tourist gawkers. Kniaz Kang did not allow 
reporters on his premises. He’d sued one large New York newspaper into 
bankruptcy over that point. Other newspapers had taken the hint. I 
pulled the side door open and held it for the Washington League. It’s 
just what a polite twelve year old boy would do for a group of adults. I 
had also lined them up in front of me in case things got violent. If 
their conversation was staged, it was really well rehearsed.Half of the 
guys were discussing the Seattle Base Ball Nines team and its perennial 
contest with one of the Boston teams, the Doves.Most of the women were 
tightly focused on Tacoma’s Amazon League professional lacrosse team. At 
least, the Starhawks say they play lacrosse. That’s women’s lacrosse, 
not the much less vigorous men’s game.Women’s lacrosse is technically 
not a blood sport. Optimistically speaking. Being charitable. The rules 
say so. Honest.They really do. They must’ve all ordered in advance, 
because they cut through to their private dining room.

I reached the head of the line. Kniaz Kang nodded at me. “You are too 
late to see her, Joe. She left already,” Kang announced.“But Dorothy and 
Teranike are still in the South Greenhouse, part way through their meals.”

“Her?” I asked.

“Her,” Kang announced with a not-quite-joking frown. “Your new 
girlfriend. Your height? Copper hair? Really pretty? Enough of a persona 
that she wore light trousers and a lighter blouse and vest, no coat at 
all, despite the weather? Paid for very little breakfast in good coin? 
After she cleaned my parking lot? And asked where she should sit, you 
being her boyfriend?”

“Oh,” I managed. “Her.My girl friend. We must have been on different 
schedules.”In particular, my girlfriend schedule was for obvious reasons 
extremely blank, likely to stay that way for some years yet, and so far 
as I can tell at the moment going to stay blank forever. Girlfriend? 
What was going on here? “Now I’d better make up to her, right?”

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <https://lists.eyrie.org/pipermail/racc/attachments/20180611/171ae54d/attachment-0001.html>

More information about the racc mailing list