Sunday January 27, 2013
Book 14: Broken Wind — Part I: Breath and Business

Note: The worlds visible at the right edge of the first panel are Earth and Luna. Earth is the little one with the ring -- it appears smaller because it's more distant, and it has a visible ring because there is a lot of material in close orbit around it. Luna, on the other hand, is a blue-green marble instead of an airless desert because humans worked very hard to make it a nicer place to live in spite of the environmental concerns.

"What environmental concerns?" you ask. "Nothing lived there!" True, but environmentalists were concerned that terraforming the moon would alter its night-time appearance to the eternal, species-extinguishing confusion of a number of insects, migratory birds, and ballad-writers. And in truth, the gloriously beautiful jewel the moon became still failed to compete with Earth's city lights, let alone the amber, equatorial glow of Earth's ring. Fortunately, new species arose and used that arch across the heavens for better night-vision, as a navigational tool, or as a cue to go misty-eyed just before the reprise.


NARRATOR: Earth-Luna space, aboard the liberated, unaffiliated transport gunship Bristlecone...

KATHRYN: I can't believe you let her on board!  Weren't you listening?

This Murtaugh lady is dangerous.  She tried to destroy this ship when she realized the little Ventura girl had compromised it.

KATHRYN: She used to be a rent-a-cop in thrall to a drug kingpin!

KATHRYN: She was the head rent-a-cop, and she had her whole team wound around the finger of a rogue U.N.S. field operative!

GEN. TAGON: Thank you, Kathryn.  I was listening.  You're repeating yourself now.

You convinced me of the most important thing: that Murtaugh was not a U.N.S. operative herself.

GEN. TAGON: But you did have me worried that with her knowledge of law enforcement procedures she could bring the police down on us, and delay our departure.

KATHRYN: So this is a lesser of two evils thing?

GEN. TAGON: Yes, though I doubt Murtaugh is the lesser of anything she sets her mind to.

MURTAUGH: Nice save, Karl.