The society Daffodil moves in is one which holds masculinity in contempt; but it is also one which holds parents in contempt. So, once Daffodil is officially disassociated with the Tolerance House, probably no one will get on his case if he discards the name his mother gave him. Terrance and Harmony will be out there to escort them from the train.
Al and the rest won't feel neglected. Eric didn't like that. He knew that his beloved was thinking about Chilena and Melody again, about not having seen them in years. It was eating at her; Eric was almost certain that this year she had even begun losing weight. So he called her back to the here and now, and to the subject of eating in particular.
It would have arrived sooner, if not for two stops enroute, during which some kind of government freight had been offloaded at the locations of two rural stations of the Agriculture Department. The passengers had been advised by Transport Police on the train to stay put and not snoop.
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This did not necessarily mean that the unknown freight had any dire and ominous meaning; the authorities liked to keep exiles in the dark about things generally.
On the snow-dusted platform, Harmony and Terrance were swamped with embraces from their nephews Wilson and Brendan and their niece Esperanza. Abraham Zondei was thus the first member of the welcoming committee to speak to Alipang and Kim--quietly. She's pining for your absent sisters, as well as for Chilena's kids. And that close call you had when rescuing Henry Spafford has only added to her stress.
We all had even less choice about being sentenced to internal exile in the first place; yet we still have to deal with the emotional strains that all these unavoidable circumstances impose on a precious saint like your mother.
So be happy and bright for her. Then she patted her belly, not yet visibly enlarged. I wish they would let you be tested for the sex of the baby. I'll survive the waiting. Shall we get going to the house? When I have a baby, I don't want to know if it's a boy or girl until it's born, anyway.
After lovingly embracing the children and Alipang, Cecilia stood positively entranced at the sight of Kim with her coat removed, as if trying to see the embryo by X-ray vision. It had not been any secret that a new Havens baby was on the way; but seeing Kim, while knowing her to be pregnant, still had a special impact on a grandmother whose heart had room for ANY number of new grandchildren.
Suddenly she burst out in tears and sobs, clinging to Kim; but Eric knew his wife well enough to be assured that this was more weeping with joy than otherwise. Kim ended up on the living-room sofa, holding Cecilia as if Cecilia herself had been a child wanting comfort. Cecilia wept so long, and patted Kim's pregnant abdomen so long This was a good sign in Eric's mind. Kim, too, understood how precious any sleep was to her profoundly world-weary mother-in-law, and went on cradling her in place as the daytime dinner was being served to others.
But Alipang, before he would eat anything himself, stationed himself near his wife and hand-fed her where she reclined. As a consequence, this home also had become a cold-weather shelter, and the De Sotos were expecting at least seven guests to arrive on Thanksgiving morning, which was when the power would be going off in most exile homes. But the De Sotos were not expecting the three women who visited them on Wednesday afternoon. First of these was to enter was Overseer Phosphorus Andrews, on duty and in her reflective uniform.
Someone who was a witness to the unauthorized abuse of Citizen Spafford, but who has herself been cleared of wrongdoing, will record a statement on your analog tape recorder, which you can adapt into an article. I'll give it the usual sedition check later. Then the other two women came in. They were not only in civilian attire, but in high-fashion attire, as if they were on their way to or from a party.
Which was possible, since government personnel were not subject to any such austerity as was imposed on the "Biblicals. This woman was in fact the very same Pinkshirt medic with whom Okokeso Vekeseha had taken cover from danger when Alipang Havens had been mopping up the infirmary room with the Overseers.
Vekeseha, the De Sotos knew. The younger woman exchanged a glance with her companion, received a nod, and introduced herself: Kurt Langford deceived me and others about his real reason for treating Spafford as a criminal. You were one of the Pinkshirt women who were trying to keep out of the way while Alipang Havens was making tofu out of those Overseers. The Consultant here helped me keep under cover Anyway, since the bad conduct of Overseer Langford put a blot on the whole Campaign Against Hate, I asked to be allowed myself to tell your readers how his un-mutual actions were exposed, and how his expulsion from the Overseers was carried out.
In a sympathetic voice, Ms. By the time the two government women left the house arm in arm, chatting about something casual, the De Sotos were feeling guardedly good about the encounter and its implications.
It had, after all, been a Forest Ranger who stuck his neck out so far as to signal approval of Miguel's arrow-borne messages. Among the small army of guests at the Eric Havens residence in Casper were Bill and Lorraine Shao, John and Felicity Waddell, Pastor Zondei, the young ladies who had formerly played the trombone and clarinet at church The sometime cult leader, however, was showing progress under the influence of Christian charity: Meat on the Havens table consisted of bear, venison The other predominant food items were mashed turnips, boiled chickweed a wild ground plant whose nutritional merits Native Americans in the Enclave had made known to their less wilderness-wise neighbors , canned peas, canned cranberry jelly, oat and rye bread with butter, and apple pies.
To drink there were several types of tea, plus apple cider. After dessert was finished, Cecilia--sternly forbidden by her husband and both of her sons to do one more lick of housework for the rest of the day--latched onto Kim again while the menfolk were cleaning up. For nearly half an hour, the still-beautiful matriarch of the Havens clan sang songs five centimeters from Kim's belly, beaming at the thought of the unborn child learning to know Grandma's voice.
And everyone else present who was paying any attention, silently raised fresh praise to God for the conspicuous boosting of Cecilia's morale. Eric, in fact, was at some pains to hide from his wife the joyful tears in his eyes. Not in the plan, but not a bad thing as it turned out, was the unannounced arrival of three women, a man and a border collie.
The one man, and the woman who was clearly with him, wore the uniforms of Diversity States Forest Rangers, and the dog stayed near them.
The other two women, keeping close to each other and a little apart from the Rangers, were wearing stylish civilian clothes, just like the civilian-attired pair who had visited the De Sotos. Just let me get the tedious business out of the way first. The woman with him will be remembered by some of you as Overseer Dana Pickering; but her request for transfer to the Forest Rangers was granted, and now she and Ranger Terrell, with Terrell's enhanced dog Whiplash, will be starting up the first Enclave station for their service, west of here.
She can introduce herself from there. First I'm a Christian, so I forgive you. Soon the new arrivals were seated and eating; and John Wisebadger plied the two Forest Rangers with questions about their plans for their Enclave posting.
Whiplash, meanwhile, struck up a sniffing acquaintance with Gabe Ellison's Irish setter Clementine. Zella Those ladies showing up at the De Soto's house was a surprise. We learn of the existence of the Chinese colony on the Moon, a sign of Greater China's supremacy.
We see the arrogance of the Enclave's Overseers; Alipang tells his son Wilson who is named after Wilson Kramer that he is worried about Ransom Kramer's anger at the murderers of his father and brother. Daffodil Ford, son of the self-absorbed, man-despising Ambassador Samantha Ford, is seen playing Equalityball in Boston.
In Sussex, Alipang tells his friend Raoul that he's worried about the possible adulterous designs of the female Overseer Dana Pickering. Miguel De Soto, founder of "The Wyoming Observer," is diagnosed with Adenoid-Cystic Carcinoma--and the regime won't allow exiles to receive the most advanced cancer treatments.
Alipang and Henry, in their capacity as paramedics, respond to the crash of the Overseers' chemtrail-spreading airplane, and are temporarily affected by the pacification vapors leaking out of it.
In Beijing, Samantha is abandoned by her assistant Nalani Hahona. Widow Lorraine Kramer begins to take interest in Taiwanese-born technician Bill Shao; Miguel shoots his anti-regime messages over the perimeter fence of the Enclave.
Summer Heron Rand, longtime pal of Alipang, is adjusting to the outside world after her release from one of the prisons absurdly called Self-Esteem Centers; it remains for her to find out where her husband and children are. Daffodil's long-suppressed frustrations are triggered by an allergic reaction to the supposedly-harmless relaxing drink "Joy Nectar;" he goes into fits of hysterics. Emilio joins the crew of one of the propellor-driven planes which have been equipped with up-to-date weapons as a means of giving the Diversity States some air defense despite their lack of jet fighters.
Alipang and Kim's children get to show off to Bert and Yang how smart homeschooling has made them. Reltseotu Smith, a lying establishment journalist, gets involved with slandering American expatriates in Nigeria one of whom is Alipang's friend Brendan ; in the Enclave, Bert spends time with Grange volunteers. Brendan fights Communist guerrillas in Nigeria; Reltseotu plans to make the good guys in this incident look like racist villains.
On board the Chinese-owned space-station hotel, Samantha and other female diplomats have a mixup over who does what. Bert finds himself the only hope of rescue for Ma'at, who is being kept in bondage by Dockerty and who was already falling for Bert even before her family's conditions took the severe turn for the worse.
Quaker surgeon Barney Jamison successfully implants the artificial breathing devices which will prolong Miguel's life. Bert persuades the Enclave administration to let him take Ma'at and her children with him as he leaves the Enclave; once in the clear, he marries Ma'at and takes his new family home to Australia.
Daffodil, having heard how things went for Bert, wants to live in the Enclave or at least visit there in part because there, unlike the Tolerance House, he might finally be allowed a romance with a girl. Injured in an accident while working in Uganda, Reltseotu is treated by Christian medical personnel, who implant a tracking device in her, so that the secret network of good guys can spy on her in case she meets with important evildoers.
Vice-President Carlos Anselmo assists Daffodil in gaining access to the Enclave; in Sussex and Casper, Overseers bully churchgoers just to keep them in their place. Henry saves the life of the trampy Odette Galloway, then disappears; Lorraine is married to Bill Shao. The unnamed covert army of international good guys carries out "music raids" within the European Caliphate, giving signs of hope for liberation to all the non-Muslims being held in dhimmitude by Islamic fundamentalists.
All this brings us back to the most recent pages, in which Henry was rescued, Ransom and Lydia pursued their courtship, and Daffodil "got volunteered" to join in a heavy-handed propaganda project in the Enclave.
Black Friday Is White One of the buildings at Natrona Airport outside of Casper had been converted into a guest lodge for government workers; and in his current theatrical capacity, Daffodil Ford was as much a government worker as Trip Conklin, Osmawani Jalil, and their supporting actors and crewmembers were.
When their plane landed in the evening on Thanksgiving Day, everyone hurried to reach the invitingly lighted two-story structure. In fact, since Osmawani was fairly athletic and energetic, Daffodil actually welcomed her taking his hand for this run, because he was more tired than she, and her tugging at him helped him get across the pavement and out of the snow sooner.
For it was snowing, and not vertically either. The wind was out of the north. Although Daffodil still would have been just as happy to be left out of this project, by now he was not feeling so bad about it. The first performance being in Rapid City had meant that his first audience had contained many persons who were NOT "Biblicals," but affiliated with the Enclave administration as Osmawani was.
They had been highly receptive--some of them, actually readers of Mr.
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