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At The Bright Empire....
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- Uberposter of Distinction
Not a new story, but First Protector 2 got 49 hits yesterday, for a total of 1,012. True Spartan's Prelude at 31 and Shadar's AU-2017 essay at 28 were new, while the latter's "A Dinner Party" gained 16 for a total of 497.
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It comes from an article about what aliens might look like, but the link for that doesn't identify the author or illustrator.
Another edit of First Protector, Part Two. Some mistakes corrected, section titles changed and key passages edited. A new scene makes the first allusion to the epilogue of Homecoming 3, but of course Vespyr and the rest don't know it's an allusion...
I'll be out of state for nearly two weeks beginning tomorrow. Don't know how much I'll be able to keep in touch...
brantley wrote: www.brightempire.com/WW-Gadot.html
My take on Wonder Woman, posted to mark the summer solstice. Loved it, despite the nits...
Quite a contrast to a failed pilot six years ago: Nothing but nits there!
Nice review… I think you captured the essence of the movie. First two acts were good, peaking in the second, and the third act was forgivable (but not notable) given it was the required ultra-powerful CGI fight that it seems all superhero movies have to include. At least Jenkins pushed it back far enough into the movie to do justice to two really good acts.
The underlying philosophy, that war is intrinsic to humans, along with, strangely enough, love, is handled reasonably well. Or as I would say it more simply, we humans are bipolar in that we can kill and love in the same day.
I thought of General George Patton, who claimed:
"Battle is the most magnificent competition in which a human being can indulge. It brings out all that is best; it removes all that is base. All men are afraid in battle. The coward is the one who lets his fear overcome his sense of duty. Duty is the essence of manhood.”
Of course, I’ve always (wanted to) reject his philosophy, but it is possible he is right. In any case, the movie makes the case that war is part of our nature and cannot be removed. So we have to counter it with love whenever we can.
Not a bad message for a Hollywood superhero CGI fest.
- Legend of SWM
By the way, before the Tom Hanks version of Cast Away, there was a 1986 movie called Castaway with Oliver Reed and Amanda Donahoe. Amanda spends a lot of her time naked, and in one scene she's naked reading Colin Wilson's The Criminal History of Mankind. I wonder if Jenkins or screenwriter Allan Heinberg had ever read that....
<< The frightening thing about the members of the Japanese Red Brigade who machine-gunned passengers at Lod airport, or the Italian terrorists who burst into a university classroom and shot the professor in the legs - alleging that he was teaching his students ‘bourgeois values’ - is that they were not criminal lunatics but sincere idealists. When we realise this we recognise that criminality is not the reckless aberration of a few moral delinquents but an inevitable consequence of the development of intelligence, the ‘flip side’ of our capacity for creativity. The worst crimes are not committed by evil degenerates, but by decent and intelligent people taking ‘pragmatic’ decisions. >>
Book Two of First Protector is about to reach its climax in today's update.
Vespyr Tal-esta, the Companion who has come home from Tazzi to bring proof about the heavy GAR being deployed by the Aurean Empire against the Velorians and the innocent worlds where they serve, has no idea that the Galen are about to intervene on their behalf.
But their advance man Alexius Tornikios and the Galen he speaks for, Aphro'dite, likewise have no idea what is happening on Velor, with rival factions on the High Council faced with how to deal with the threat from the Empire with whatever resources Velor itself can muster. Story lines that began in the Empress of the Dawn and Homecoming series are about to come together.
The Aurora Universe has always been about superheroine adventure and romance, and my version of it has always been about world-building in the science fiction tradition. But here it is about Big History.
--Brantley Thompson Elkins
For the wrap-up of Empress of the Dawn III ( www.brightempire.com/Empress-3.pdf ).
It has to end with the Battle of the Triple Moons, which has to involve both the Androssian fleet and Kalla herself. I'm not sure how to make it all come together.
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<<I later took Dar’yul aside to discuss my own concerns as a Velorian
“Do you truly suppose that very many of my fellow Velorians will want to take the risk of being annihilated?”
“They won’t have any choice in the matter. Conscription.”
The first Companions had indeed been conscripts in all but name, given away by their fathers or the priests. It was only later that they discovered that how powerful they became outside the Velorian gold field and – much later – that they could live on and on, far past the time they would have died at home. But freedom for them, once they had served their indentures, had become a challenge for the High Council.
I could see where things might be going.
“Will they make the indentures indefinite, too?”
“I don’t think Koro’lat would go that far. The Companions have to feel they have a chance.”
“A chance of what?”
“A chance for freedom and near-immortality, versus the risk of being cut down in the prime of life. It should all balance out in their minds. That’s how Koro’lat sees it. How the conscripts will see it…”
A sudden thought occurred to me.
“What if they conscripted men too?”
Dar’yul was clearly flabbergasted, and it took a minute for him to respond.
“They’d never hear of it,” he said.
“But, like the women, they could look forward to longer lives.”
“Only, they wouldn’t have any women… unless—”
“The terms of indenture for Companions would forbid that. Even those for groups as opposed to individuals exclude outsiders.”
“Solomon Gazrall was an older man, and allowed me… certain liberties. I even formed… attachments.”
“You were indeed fortunate in being allowed those ‘certain liberties.’”
“Even if such liberties were sanctioned for all Companions, Terrans might resent us for taking them with Velorians – they’d be constantly reminded that they are ordinary men, that they can never measure up to Velorian men as lovers.”
“Some have taken Terran lovers, and even found happiness with them.”
“But only after fulfilling the indentures.”
Being indentured as Companions for a mere century came to seem a blessing, compared to a short life back home under the domination of men, for it could leave them free to live and love as they saw fit… although that freedom could be bittersweet, given the short life spans of their Terran lovers.
But it might all be academic, I thought.
“Won’t it take a vote of the Senate to authorize conscription?
“Indeed. And for all the military measures to be funded by the indentures – which might be assigned to planets as such, rather than wealthy individuals.”
“Until Gazrall, nobody on Tazzi was wealthy enough. But how could planetary indentures work?”
“There are doubtless worlds that would tax their own people for protection, or the illusion of protection, once word spreads about the GARs. As to the rest, I suppose the same kind of lotteries as for the boys sent to the Academy would be instituted to—”
“I get it!”
“And it might all be in vain. There are no easy answers. Perhaps none at all. But I can discuss the issue with the rest of the Council and the Senate after they’ve gone through the motions with the Priests at the Shrine for the Remembrance.”>>
Book Two of First Protector is finally reaching its climax in today's update. But it's been necessary to revise Chapter Eight and add a Chapter Nine to develop the relationship between Vespyr and Dar'yul, the junior High Councillor assigned to the case against her as a deserter who has actually taken up her cause and in whom she is able to confide about herself and what really happened – and what she only believes happened – on Tazzi, and how it changed her life and gave her a new sense of mission. There are seemingly small but significant revelations about other players, with more of these yet to come – including about the cult family Vespyr left behind when she became a Companion.
--Brantley Thompson Elkins