Reality Patrol, Tal Sharnis Bureau The following is a transcript of the portion of yesterday morning’s meeting in which decisions were reached regarding the ThingTown Abyss and the web of sorcery recently discovered to have been surreptitiously created within the city of Tal Sharnis. - D. Crowstairs, Senior Administrative Aide Regional Director Garza: I trust you’ve all read Agent Bly’s report and the analysis by Agent Kinuthia sent from Leonis Base? Good. I’ve asked Dr. Devere to join us – she has past experience that might be relevant to this matter. Deputy Regional Director Perkins: What sort of experience? Dr. Devere: Experience with situations in which an entity possessed of both subtlety and longevity seeks to gain control of a city through strategies implemented over an extended period, on a level outside the awareness of the local authorities and general populace. Deputy Regional Director Perkins: Er, yes, that, ah, does sound relevant. Regional Director Garza: When we first assigned Agent Bly to this situation, the objective was simply to have her find a way to permanently close the ThingTown Abyss. Of course, that was before her investigation of the Abyss led her to discover this web of sorcery to which the site of the Abyss is connected. What I want to know now is, if Agent Bly does close the Abyss, what effect will it have on the web? Agent Bly? Agent Bly: Sir, according to my calculations, closing the ThingTown Abyss will generate a burst of energy that will completely destroy everything inside the ThingTown Dome, including the two ortgeists and the spells that are binding them. This should leave a big hole in the web. Since we know now that the web is really a giant magickal sigil, basically what we’d be doing is erasing part of the sigil. Regional Director Garza: Would this prevent completion of the sigil and neutralize our unknown enemy’s plot? Agent Bly: Only temporarily, sir. The enemy could repair the damage by binding a new spirit or other astral being in the same general location. Dr. Devere: We should assume the enemy is prepared to do just that. When a web is spun over so many years, in territory so unstable and prone to change, holes in the web inevitably happen. Most likely, this won't be the first hole our little spider has had to patch. Regional Director Garza: What if we stopped it from being patched? If we established a permanent presence at the site, and monitored it so that no one could sneak in bind a new spirit there? Dr. Devere: Our opponent is likely to have considered the possibility that a location that’s part of the web might become unusable for one reason or another. They will have built enough flexibility into the design that if a damaged portion of the web can’t be reconstructed using the original location, the web can be modified to work around the problem. But such a modification would require some extra effort on the part of our opponent. And a spider busily moving around, fixing its web, is easier to spot than a spider sitting still. Deputy Regional Director Perkins: If the goal is to force the enemy’s hand in the hope they reveal themselves in their efforts at damage control, we should destroy as much of the web as possible, not just the part at the ThingTown location. Dr. Devere: But if we destroy enough of the web that the destruction starts to look intentional, our spider will know we’re onto it, and will scurry off and hide under a rock. Whereas if the only hole we poke in the web is the hole created by closing the ThingTown Abyss, our spider will have little cause to suspect its web has been discovered. It will assume we closed the Abyss because the Abyss itself was a danger - just as we’d planned to do in the first place - and won’t look for any further motive on our part. The damage done to the web by the closing of the Abyss will be seen as an accidental side-effect, and our little spider won’t suspect we’re watching for its next move. Regional Director Garza: Well, then. Agent Bly, I want the ThingTown Abyss closed 48 hours from now. Agent Bly: Yes, sir. Regional Director Garza: Crowstairs, my office at 1100 hours. We’ll be drafting a letter to the Mayor’s Office and the City Council explaining that the Reality Patrol will be taking permanent possession of the ThingTown Abyss site and the surrounding area. Senior Administrative Aide Crowstairs: Yes, sir. Regional Director Garza: Let’s see if poking a hole in the web will get this spider to show itself.
“Experience with situations in which an entity possessed of both subtlety and longevity seeks to gain control of a city through strategies implemented over an extended period, on a level outside the awareness of the local authorities and general populace.”
I love Bianca (AKA Dr. Devere). One of my favorite Weird Luck characters to write. This is the first time she’s actually shown up in Insurgent Otherworld, but not the first time she’s been mentioned.
This chapter marks the halfway point of Insurgent Otherworld. Chapter 32 out of 63.
See you next Wednesday,