A Leaf in the Storm


This too shall pass.

The energy-opaque bubble triggered to protect us from the primary plasma and secondary thermobaric shockwaves from the orbital strike, the same hazards raising the projected casualty rate in the concourse to around ninety-five percent.

I reached into the city with authority an order of magnitude higher than any planetside government, requisitioning every transatmospheric-capable vehicle within a two-mile radius for improvised extraction. Two-thirds of those vehicles were selected at random and ordered to destroy themselves. The remaining third I laid in a circle equidistant from our location.

Worst of all, I was following one of a large number of action sequences generated in advance for unlikely circumstances. This left my surface thoughts more-or-less unoccupied by strategic or tactical concerns, and gave me an opportunity to reflect.

We had been young, once. She had dreamt of a career in high politics, and I of more direct means of changing the world.

What a shame we had both achieved our dreams.

Comments (2 so far!)

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But you meet the Prince at the Board,

I'm queen myself at bals-paré,

I've married a rich old lord,

And you're dubbed knight and an R.A.

Each life unfulfilled, you see;

It hangs still, patchy and scrappy:

We have not sighed deep, laughed free,

Starved, feasted, despaired,—been happy.

And nobody calls you a dunce,

And people suppose me clever:

This could but have happened once,

And we missed it, lost it for ever.

Sorry for the quote, but this piece by Browning is ever vivid in my mind.

  • #1115 Posted 7 years ago
  • 0
  • 5 out of 5


Excellent quote. It happens I have not seen it before.

  • #1118 Posted 7 years ago
  • 0

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