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Out of order snippet? WHAT out of order snippet?

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Re: Out of order snippet? WHAT out of order snippet?
Post by ldwechsler   » Mon Sep 25, 2017 9:36 am

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ly published an Honorverse novel 6-8 months after getting the manuscript, with the eARC going out 30-60 days after. Given the unprecedented 14 month gap it's hard to figure when she'll release the eARC.

From a readiness angle she could probably release it next month. The eARC represents pure gravy for both Baen and the MWW, so hopefully they won't sit on it too long. I have no insight as to sales figures or eARC vs. Kindle vs. Dead Tree sales for the MWWs works (publishers keep that pretty close to the vest, unfortunately), but I'd be surprised if the eARC had any material impact on hardback/Kindle sales of the finished book.

Edit: And thanks to the Mad Wizard for giving us that excellent date/event summary. It's boggling how much has gone on, narratively, in less than 2 years.

The sweep of this series is unrivaled in Science Fiction, IMHO. Only CJ Cherryh comes close.[/quote]

Toni didn't schedule it until she had a firm turn-in date, which she didn't get until July. (Remember that what was going on last fall created a certain . . . uncertainty about my delivery schedule.) By then, the slots in the first two quarters of 2018 were completely full and that may have been true of the third quarter, as well. Even if it wasn't, she'd probably have held it till the fourth quarter in order to hit the holiday sales with what is going to be --- correctly --- marketed as the wrap up of the arc that began in OBS.[/quote]


RFC,
You're being a bit too modest. Your new book will almost certainly outsell most of the lead books for the year and quite possibly all of this year as well.

Your fans are legion and will be buying. And the libraries will buy (quite a few lead books are not ordered by the Palm Beach County library system) their quota.

But perhaps you can intervene with Toni for an early eArc. Perhaps really early.
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Re: Out of order snippet? WHAT out of order snippet?
Post by runsforcelery   » Mon Sep 25, 2017 9:45 am

runsforcelery
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Vince wrote:

Robert_A_Woodward wrote:
IMHO, Houdini should have been activated when Oyster Bay was authorized several days after 1st Manticore (i.e., 11 months earlier than Houdini actually was). Furthermore, sufficiently cautious conspirators should have planned on disappearing BEFORE they go active with Prometheus.


RFC responding to Robert_A_Woodward wrote:
They were in the process of disappearing even before Oyster Bay, and Oyster Bay was organized very quickly in response to their perception that the introduction of Apollo meant that the war between Manticore and Haven was effectively over and that Manticore was going to emerge as a major obstacle. It was an improvisation, and there was no way that anyone in Manticore — or anywhere else — could determine who had launched the attack or where it had been launched from. Under the circumstances, Albrecht felt — and I, personally, would agree with him — that the odds that anyone could trace the attack back to a non-existent (as far as the rest of the galaxy knew) interstellar conspiracy with exactly zero in the way of evidence of any sort were enormously lower than the possibility that someone like the Biological Survey Corps or Beowulfan intelligence in general might notice the abrupt disappearance of several thousand prominent Mesans. As I said in my earlier post, a “slow-motion” Houdini had been in operation all along. The instant that Albrecht Detweiler knew that anyone had discovered the existence of the Alignment, he decided that it was imperative to get critical personnel out of the Mesa System and to erase the Alignment’s physical footprint immediately and however destructively necessary, and that's precisely what he did.



Vince wrote:
I would say if you are going to poke a manticore, don't do it from an exposed position. And the Mesan Alignment should have known it was in a precarious position (for those Mesan Alignment personnel physically on Mesa) having used Manpower and Mesa to poke Manticore in the original Talbott operation. The Alignment should have activated or accelerated Houdini shortly after the conversation (2 weeks later, after the freighter Marianne failed to report in) with Aldona Anisimovna, Isabel Bardasano, and Albrecht Detweiler where the failure of the Talbott operation was discussed in At All Costs. Bardasano puts her finger on the key information:


At All Costs, Chapter 47 wrote:

<SNIP>

"At this point," Bardasano said, "we don't know how our security was penetrated. I see two possibilities. One is that the penetration took place on the Monican side. President Tyler and his closest advisers had to be brought fully into the picture, at least as far as their part of the operation was concerned. Their security arrangements were beyond our control, and we don't know how or where they might have been breached.
"The second possibility," she continued unflinchingly, "is that the penetration was on our side of the operation. In that case, the most likely scenario is that this Terekhov literally stumbled over the Marianne."
"Marianne?" Detweiler repeated.
"The special ops ship we were using to deliver weapons to our proxies," Bardasano explained. "We've used her and her crew dozens of times before. They're reliable and experienced in this sort of covert operation, and using our own ship and our own people let us maintain a far lower profile and avoid an entire additional layer of potential leaks."
"So why do you think she could be involved?"
"Because she's the only direct link between our terrorist proxies and Monica." Bardasano shrugged. "Izrok needed emergency transportation for additional shipyard technicians. Marianne was already headed for the Cluster. He asked me if we could transport them for him, and I agreed. Apparently, I shouldn't have."
She made the admission without flinching, and a flicker of what might have been approval showed in Detweiler's eyes.
"If she is the clue the Manties picked up on," she continued, "they must have taken at least some of her personnel and sweated them. They don't actually know anything about the Monican side of the operation, but they do know they delivered technicians to Monica. That could have been enough. Unfortunately, we probably won't know whether or not that's what actually happened for some time. Marianne's movement schedule means we don't expect contact with her for another couple of weeks."

"This is all speculation," Detweiler remarked, and Bardasano and Anisimovna both nodded.
"We barely managed to get out of Monica, and take the only Frontier Security personnel directly involved in the operation with us," Anisimovna said. "We couldn't afford to wait around for any more details. If they'd captured Isabel or myself—"
She broke off, and it was Detweiler's turn to nod.
"Point taken," he acknowledged. He considered them silently for several more seconds, then seemed to reach a decision.
Italics are the author's, boldface and underlined text is my emphasis.





I’m not quite clear on why everyone seems to think there was some sort of big, flashing illuminated arrow pointing at the Mesa System and saying “Interstellar Conspiracy Headquarters Here” prior to Jack McBryde’s conversations with Victor and Anton.

For example, the Marianne didn’t belong to the Alignment and nobody aboard her knew one damned thing about the Alignment. One reason that the Alignment has found Manpower useful over the years is that the Devil is beyond blackening. They could use Manpower to do anything they wanted to without anyone looking beyond the “Well, they’re the kind of scum that deal in human lives. Of course they’re going to be involved in all sorts of awful things!” Anisimovna and Bardasano were known to their fellow conspirators only as representatives of a pair of Mesan-based transstellars conspiring with a batch of Solarian transstellars. Not a single person involved in the operation at a lower level than Anisimovna and Bardasano had any evidence or knowledge to the contrary. In fact, when the crew of the Marianne was captured and interrogated, the only truthful testimony they could give only reinforced the cover story that this was an operation by rogue transstellars. (I realize that “rogue transstellars” is redundant, of course.) And does anyone think that Manticore was going to attack Mesa --- at that point --- when the Mesan transtellars involved were only two players among several, including some mighty prominent Solarian conspirators? The far more likely response was exactly the one they got: Manticore put it down as another debt it owed to corrupt transtellars in general, denounced them in the press, demanded that the Solarian players be investigated and prosecuted, and never thought for a moment that there might be something deeper and still darker behind the cover story. And nothing in that cover story possibly justified launching a military operation against the Mesa System (with all the attendant risks of a further potential confrontation with the League, which was already pissed off over Monica) while the situation with Haven was as . . . fraught as it was at the time.

My point is that the Alignment was already withdrawing key personnel from Mesa on a carefully orchestrated timetable designed to avoid anyone on Mesa — or anywhere else — saying “I wonder where all those high paid executives and their families have mysteriously disappeared to” or “I could’ve sworn those three key researchers were still in place, but now they and their kids have disappeared without leaving a forwarding address.” The original Houdini was poised and ready to go the instant the Alignment’s leadership had reason to believe its existence might be intruding into the light. The expedited Houdini was ordered within hours of Albrecht realizing that the Alignment’s existence had intruded into the light.

I think that people who feel he Alignment should have shaken the dust of Mesa from its sandals and vanished into the night — regardless of however obvious the unexplained disappearance of thousands of personnel and the destruction of scores of physical sites might be — the morning after the Battle of Monica or (at the latest) the instant Oyster Bay was ordered are suffering a bit from We’re the Readers So We Know What’s Happening Syndrome. They’re seeing the downside of the Alignment not having pulled every single soul in the inner Onion off of Mesa but without considering that the very act of pulling them out would have been evidence that they’d been there to need to be pulled out. Making the conspirators vanish would have left conspirator-shaped holes that would definitely have made someone like Manticore look beyond the fall guy façade of Manpower and Kalokainos and Technodyne and wonder why people with no connection whatsoever with Manpower or Jessyk had suddenly disappeared into the night. Until the threat of the discovery of the Alignment’s existence from a different perspective became greater than the threat of confirming that it did exist by pulling so many people abruptly out of their lives on Mesa, Albert felt (reasonably, I think) that he wasn’t justified in ordering Houdini at all, far less the expedited version punctuated with nuclear explosions!


"Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as Piglet came back from the dead.
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Re: Out of order snippet? WHAT out of order snippet?
Post by n7axw   » Mon Sep 25, 2017 10:12 am

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Mesa might not have had a "interstellar conspiracy headquarters" sign hanging over it, but if my memory serves correctly, Manpower has done a lot of conspiring over the centuries and have even been occasionally caught at it. So it's not surprising that suspicion would come their way.

What shifts in the storyline is that some people start wondering why a transstellar is acting like a star nation...even before Zilwicke an Cachat's exposing the Alignment. As I recall, that question is one of the reasons they go to Mesa.

Don

-
When any group seeks political power in God's name, both religion and politics are instantly corrupted.
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Re: Out of order snippet? WHAT out of order snippet?
Post by runsforcelery   » Mon Sep 25, 2017 10:39 am

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n7axw wrote:Mesa might not have had a "interstellar conspiracy headquarters" sign hanging over it, but if my memory serves correctly, Manpower has done a lot of conspiring over the centuries and have even been occasionally caught at it. So it's not surprising that suspicion would come their way.

What shifts in the storyline is that some people start wondering why a transstellar is acting like a star nation...even before Zilwicke an Cachat's exposing the Alignment. As I recall, that question is one of the reasons they go to Mesa.

Don

-


They're wondering why a consortium of transtellars is acting like a star nation and --- Manticore being Manticore and Haven being Haven --- how Manpower is pulling the strings on the rest of its partners and the League. Anton and Victor aren't off to Mesa to uncover a vast interstellar conspiracy. They're off to figure out why the Usual Suspects are acting on a bigger, much more dangerous scale.

And, as I say, Albrecht had already begun the final draw down of Onion personnel from Mesa. He just wasn't willing to do it on such a rapid basis that it would be obvious that someone was being pulled out. He had to balance several factors:

(1) Can I afford for my key people to be stuck on Mesa in the (highly unlikely) eventuality of a Manticoran conquest of the system over what a batch of transtellars did to it in Talbott?

(2) If I pull out several thousand people, most of whom are very successful in Mesan society, on an overnight basis, won't I draw attention to who they were, what their associations were, and why they might have needed to be pulled out?

(3) If I expedite the withdrawal of the people involved, how do I expedite the elimination of the Alignment's physical footprint, as well? Won't a batch of nuclear explosions tend to validate Manticore's claims that there was something on Mesa that needed to be hidden?

(4) Prior to Green Pines, I have no evidence that anyone in Manticore or Haven suspects a damned thing. Even with Green Pines, I don't know what Cachat and Zilwicki were looking for when they turned up or what Jack may have told them.

(5) It doesn't matter what he may have told them, because they're dead and so is he.

From the perspective of the reader and of Anton and Victor, the question of Manpower's motivations has begun to shift. From the perspective of virtually everyone else in the Honorverse, it really hasn't. (Honor is probably one of the few other in-universe characters who share their questions, but not even they have begun to so much as suspect the truth until McBryde drops his little bombshell on them. And it isn't until they return to Mesa in Cauldron that Anton's analysis begins to suggest even to them that people may be being extracted under cover of the "terrorist" attacks.)

So, yes, the tide is shifting and Albrecht finds out he has to push the button on the expedited --- and messy as hell --- Houdini, but that is evident before the fact only to the reader. There is zero reason for anyone in-universe to see it coming before McBryde spills the beans to Anton and Victor, however, and I think that's the standard by which Albrecht's decisions (and the timing on them) have to be evaluated.


"Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as Piglet came back from the dead.
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Re: Out of order snippet? WHAT out of order snippet?
Post by GregD   » Mon Sep 25, 2017 11:51 am

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JohnRoth wrote:
GregD wrote:
"runsforcelery"
And, of course, the EARC will be available for those of you who want it well before next November!

Is that a promise? Toni seems to really like delaying the damn things


What delay?

Let's cover the history. ARCs (advanced reader copies) were originally dead tree versions that were given to people in the industry who had influence on buying the books in bulk, showing it in stores, writing reviews the day it was available to the public and similar. In other words, part of the marketing process.

Then they started showing up on eBay for completely ridiculous prices. Apparently some people really do have too much time and money on their hands.

Making an electronic version available to fans was a completely commercial response to that. However, the amount Baen gets from the fans is a whole lot less than what they get from getting the book into the hands of people who can get it prime space in stores so they can read it and make decisions.

Making eARCs available to the general public is simply a way of getting some fans to buy the book twice. Or three times. Of course, it may also have some word-of-mouth effect for the marketing campaign.

The timing of the release will be decided by marketing.


1: Larry Corriea has said that he's had advances "pay out" just on eARC sales.

2: Toni has received books, complete from author, and released the eARC ~6 months later, because she didn't want to release the eARC "too soon."

3: I buy a lot less eARCs now, because they used to come out a month+ before the webscription started, and now they often come out 2 days or less before the first half of the book.

Yes, I'm pissy about this. I'm paying for time. Getting a mere 1/2 the book early is rarely worth $15
Last edited by GregD on Mon Sep 25, 2017 6:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Out of order snippet? WHAT out of order snippet?
Post by n7axw   » Mon Sep 25, 2017 12:57 pm

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runsforcelery wrote:
n7axw wrote:Mesa might not have had a "interstellar conspiracy headquarters" sign hanging over it, but if my memory serves correctly, Manpower has done a lot of conspiring over the centuries and have even been occasionally caught at it. So it's not surprising that suspicion would come their way.

What shifts in the storyline is that some people start wondering why a transstellar is acting like a star nation...even before Zilwicke an Cachat's exposing the Alignment. As I recall, that question is one of the reasons they go to Mesa.

Don

-


They're wondering why a consortium of transtellars is acting like a star nation and --- Manticore being Manticore and Haven being Haven --- how Manpower is pulling the strings on the rest of its partners and the League. Anton and Victor aren't off to Mesa to uncover a vast interstellar conspiracy. They're off to figure out why the Usual Suspects are acting on a bigger, much more dangerous scale.

And, as I say, Albrecht had already begun the final draw down of Onion personnel from Mesa. He just wasn't willing to do it on such a rapid basis that it would be obvious that someone was being pulled out. He had to balance several factors:

(1) Can I afford for my key people to be stuck on Mesa in the (highly unlikely) eventuality of a Manticoran conquest of the system over what a batch of transtellars did to it in Talbott?

(2) If I pull out several thousand people, most of whom are very successful in Mesan society, on an overnight basis, won't I draw attention to who they were, what their associations were, and why they might have needed to be pulled out?

(3) If I expedite the withdrawal of the people involved, how do I expedite the elimination of the Alignment's physical footprint, as well? Won't a batch of nuclear explosions tend to validate Manticore's claims that there was something on Mesa that needed to be hidden?

(4) Prior to Green Pines, I have no evidence that anyone in Manticore or Haven suspects a damned thing. Even with Green Pines, I don't know what Cachat and Zilwicki were looking for when they turned up or what Jack may have told them.

(5) It doesn't matter what he may have told them, because they're dead and so is he.

From the perspective of the reader and of Anton and Victor, the question of Manpower's motivations has begun to shift. From the perspective of virtually everyone else in the Honorverse, it really hasn't. (Honor is probably one of the few other in-universe characters who share their questions, but not even they have begun to so much as suspect the truth until McBryde drops his little bombshell on them. And it isn't until they return to Mesa in Cauldron that Anton's analysis begins to suggest even to them that people may be being extracted under cover of the "terrorist" attacks.)

So, yes, the tide is shifting and Albrecht finds out he has to push the button on the expedited --- and messy as hell --- Houdini, but that is evident before the fact only to the reader. There is zero reason for anyone in-universe to see it coming before McBryde spills the beans to Anton and Victor, however, and I think that's the standard by which Albrecht's decisions (and the timing on them) have to be evaluated.


Ok... a consortium of transtellars. That is a friendly amendment to my comment. My point is that the question is being asked, and not just by Ruth, Anton, and Victor. Mike Henke is also chewing on it and as I recall, she passes it along to Landing where Pat Givens among others also chew on it a bit. Having the question asked is what opens the way for our favorite duo to embark on on their journey to Mesa. That is not the only factor, of course. But it is a major one. McBryde spilling the beans is a result of the question being asked to start with.

Don

-
When any group seeks political power in God's name, both religion and politics are instantly corrupted.
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Re: Out of order snippet? WHAT out of order snippet?
Post by JohnRoth   » Mon Sep 25, 2017 1:19 pm

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RFC, thanks for the clarification. I'd been wondering why the MAlign hadn't been transferring their operation to Darius, and had tagged "Operation Houdini" as the complete, start to finish, transfer operation. Turns out, they had, but the pace was glacially slow.

It also clarifies that final series of nuclear explosions: those bombs had been there all along, and weren't part of the expedited "Operation Houdini."

I still think they should have speeded it up once the Lynx terminus was discovered, but as you point out, that's hindsight.
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Re: Out of order snippet? WHAT out of order snippet?
Post by runsforcelery   » Mon Sep 25, 2017 1:54 pm

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n7axw wrote:
n7axw wrote:Mesa might not have had a "interstellar conspiracy headquarters" sign hanging over it, but if my memory serves correctly, Manpower has done a lot of conspiring over the centuries and have even been occasionally caught at it. So it's not surprising that suspicion would come their way.

What shifts in the storyline is that some people start wondering why a transstellar is acting like a star nation...even before Zilwicke an Cachat's exposing the Alignment. As I recall, that question is one of the reasons they go to Mesa.

Don

-


runsforcelery wrote:They're wondering why a consortium of transtellars is acting like a star nation and --- Manticore being Manticore and Haven being Haven --- how Manpower is pulling the strings on the rest of its partners and the League. Anton and Victor aren't off to Mesa to uncover a vast interstellar conspiracy. They're off to figure out why the Usual Suspects are acting on a bigger, much more dangerous scale.

And, as I say, Albrecht had already begun the final draw down of Onion personnel from Mesa. He just wasn't willing to do it on such a rapid basis that it would be obvious that someone was being pulled out. He had to balance several factors:

(1) Can I afford for my key people to be stuck on Mesa in the (highly unlikely) eventuality of a Manticoran conquest of the system over what a batch of transtellars did to it in Talbott?

(2) If I pull out several thousand people, most of whom are very successful in Mesan society, on an overnight basis, won't I draw attention to who they were, what their associations were, and why they might have needed to be pulled out?

(3) If I expedite the withdrawal of the people involved, how do I expedite the elimination of the Alignment's physical footprint, as well? Won't a batch of nuclear explosions tend to validate Manticore's claims that there was something on Mesa that needed to be hidden?

(4) Prior to Green Pines, I have no evidence that anyone in Manticore or Haven suspects a damned thing. Even with Green Pines, I don't know what Cachat and Zilwicki were looking for when they turned up or what Jack may have told them.

(5) It doesn't matter what he may have told them, because they're dead and so is he.

From the perspective of the reader and of Anton and Victor, the question of Manpower's motivations has begun to shift. From the perspective of virtually everyone else in the Honorverse, it really hasn't. (Honor is probably one of the few other in-universe characters who share their questions, but not even they have begun to so much as suspect the truth until McBryde drops his little bombshell on them. And it isn't until they return to Mesa in Cauldron that Anton's analysis begins to suggest even to them that people may be being extracted under cover of the "terrorist" attacks.)

So, yes, the tide is shifting and Albrecht finds out he has to push the button on the expedited --- and messy as hell --- Houdini, but that is evident before the fact only to the reader. There is zero reason for anyone in-universe to see it coming before McBryde spills the beans to Anton and Victor, however, and I think that's the standard by which Albrecht's decisions (and the timing on them) have to be evaluated.


Ok... a consortium of transtellars. That is a friendly amendment to my comment. My point is that the question is being asked, and not just by Ruth, Anton, and Victor. Mike Henke is also chewing on it and as I recall, she passes it along to Landing where Pat Givens among others also chew on it a bit. Having the question asked is what opens the way for our favorite duo to embark on on their journey to Mesa. That is not the only factor, of course. But it is a major one. McBryde spilling the beans is a result of the question being asked to start with.

Don

-


Unless I am misremembering , Pat Givens still wasn’t prepared to say definitively that Haven wasn’t behind the assassinations that derailed the proposed peace conference. She certainly wasn’t pointing a finger at Manpower or Mesa. The decision to go to Mesa was made by Victor Cachat and Anton Zilwicki without even consulting their respective governments. Remember that Zilwicki sent back channel word (more or less) of where he was going to Honor by way of Catherine Montaigne. That was because he, Victor, Ruth, and their buddies back home on Torch had started wondering if the traditional view of Manpower might not have been . . . less than complete, given the fact that they now have evidence that it was acting more like a star nation than a conventional transstellar. At that point, even they had more of an itch they couldn't scratch than any sort of a theory to explain what had changed or how. Like a certain mongoose in a Rudyard Kipling story they had to go "run and find out."

Mike Henke doesn’t start to ask questions about “Why is Manpower is acting like a star nation?” until after the Battle of Spindle in February 1922, because up until that point nobody realizes that the Bad Guys™ are actually managing to throw around entire SLN fleets. Up until that point, everything that’s been done could have been — and, in the case of Monica, demonstrably was done — by one or more of the transstellars. Maneuvering entire fleets is considerably more ambitious, and that’s the point at which Mike’s “I Am Suspicious™” button gets punched. The Battle of Spindle is only a couple of weeks before Oyster Bay, and Oyster Bay — delivered by parties unknown — on the heels of Spindle begins adding point to the I Am Suspicious™ buttons of the more paranoid members of the intelligence community. The fact that Manpower’s representative — Anisimovna — was involved in both Monica and New Tuscany certainly helps to focus suspicions (especially Mike’s, Khumalo’s, and Baroness Medusa’s) on Mesa, but they are still thinking in terms of the very transstellar which the Alignment has designed from the beginning as their stalking horse. When Beowulf informs both Haven and Manticore about Operation Raging Justice, it only ratchets up the focus on — and perplexity over — why Manpower and its transstellar allies are pursuing the policy they are. And, of course, how they can get away with it.

Meanwhile, Anton and Victor, thanks to their engineering problems, take a long time to get back to Hainuwele/Parmaley Station. It’s not until the first week of April 1922 that they actually leave Parmaley Station and head for Nouveau Paris, and they arrive there only after Honor has been recalled to Manticore in the wake of Oyster Bay. So it’s not until late April/early May that Eloise Pritchart learns about the Alignment’s existence, and it’s not until the first week of June that Eloise and Elizabeth do their “handshake” treaty of alliance.

People were wondering what the hell Manpower and its transstellar buddies thought they were doing, and people were wondering how they had the juice to pull it off, but nobody had gotten past the notion that it was Manpower (and the aforesaid transstellar buddies) doing it.

The reason I’m stressing that is that Manpower was there specifically to be suspected in the Mesan Alignment’s grand scheme of things. Up until Jack McBryde peeled up a corner of the mask and let Anton and Victor see what was hidden behind it, things were proceeding (in a strategic sense, despite any tactical setbacks) in the direction Albrecht & Inc. wanted them to proceed.

And, let me stress again, that Albrecht was already pulling people out of Mesa. The core of the Onion had already begun disappearing down the rabbit hole long before Green Pines, and until Anton and Victor turned up — alive — in the Haven System to blow the whistle, not even Mike Henke would have considered invading and occupying the Mesa System while they were still trying to figure out what levers in the Solarian League Manpower could pull.

(Well, Mike being Mike, the notion of going after Mesa would undoubtedly have warmed the cockles of her heart after New Tuscany and Spindle :lol:, but at that point she had other fish to fry. In particular, despite Spindle there was no official declaration of war between the League and Manticore and taking a major fleet inside the League’s frontiers, even to attack a star system which wasn’t a League member, could only have helped ensure that the military confrontation with Old Chicago would get even worse.)

Once Eloise shared Victor and Anton’s findings with Elizabeth, everything changed. At that point, it was time for Albrecht to get everyone he could out as quickly as he could.

And, by the way, there is an additional defense in depth built into both the Alignment’s long-term plans and into Operation Houdini specifically designed to cause everyone but the Grand Alliance to conclude that these allegations about vast interstellar conspiracies are the paranoid ravings of a batch of unhinged neobarb imperialists who have only intermittent contact with reality.

Pretty well designed for that, actually, if I do say so myself. :twisted:


"Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as Piglet came back from the dead.
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Re: Out of order snippet? WHAT out of order snippet?
Post by roseandheather   » Mon Sep 25, 2017 2:28 pm

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runsforcelery wrote:They're wondering why a consortium of transtellars is acting like a star nation and --- Manticore being Manticore and Haven being Haven --- how Manpower is pulling the strings on the rest of its partners and the League. Anton and Victor aren't off to Mesa to uncover a vast interstellar conspiracy. They're off to figure out why the Usual Suspects are acting on a bigger, much more dangerous scale.

And, as I say, Albrecht had already begun the final draw down of Onion personnel from Mesa. He just wasn't willing to do it on such a rapid basis that it would be obvious that someone was being pulled out. He had to balance several factors:

(1) Can I afford for my key people to be stuck on Mesa in the (highly unlikely) eventuality of a Manticoran conquest of the system over what a batch of transtellars did to it in Talbott?

(2) If I pull out several thousand people, most of whom are very successful in Mesan society, on an overnight basis, won't I draw attention to who they were, what their associations were, and why they might have needed to be pulled out?

(3) If I expedite the withdrawal of the people involved, how do I expedite the elimination of the Alignment's physical footprint, as well? Won't a batch of nuclear explosions tend to validate Manticore's claims that there was something on Mesa that needed to be hidden?

(4) Prior to Green Pines, I have no evidence that anyone in Manticore or Haven suspects a damned thing. Even with Green Pines, I don't know what Cachat and Zilwicki were looking for when they turned up or what Jack may have told them.

(5) It doesn't matter what he may have told them, because they're dead and so is he.

From the perspective of the reader and of Anton and Victor, the question of Manpower's motivations has begun to shift. From the perspective of virtually everyone else in the Honorverse, it really hasn't. (Honor is probably one of the few other in-universe characters who share their questions, but not even they have begun to so much as suspect the truth until McBryde drops his little bombshell on them. And it isn't until they return to Mesa in Cauldron that Anton's analysis begins to suggest even to them that people may be being extracted under cover of the "terrorist" attacks.)

So, yes, the tide is shifting and Albrecht finds out he has to push the button on the expedited --- and messy as hell --- Houdini, but that is evident before the fact only to the reader. There is zero reason for anyone in-universe to see it coming before McBryde spills the beans to Anton and Victor, however, and I think that's the standard by which Albrecht's decisions (and the timing on them) have to be evaluated.


Ok... a consortium of transtellars. That is a friendly amendment to my comment. My point is that the question is being asked, and not just by Ruth, Anton, and Victor. Mike Henke is also chewing on it and as I recall, she passes it along to Landing where Pat Givens among others also chew on it a bit. Having the question asked is what opens the way for our favorite duo to embark on on their journey to Mesa. That is not the only factor, of course. But it is a major one. McBryde spilling the beans is a result of the question being asked to start with.

Don

-[/quote]

Unless I am misremembering , Pat Givens still wasn’t prepared to say definitively that Haven wasn’t behind the assassinations that derailed the proposed peace conference. She certainly wasn’t pointing a finger at Manpower or Mesa. The decision to go to Mesa was made by Victor Cachat and Anton Zilwicki without even consulting their respective governments. Remember that Zilwicki sent back channel word (more or less) of where he was going to Honor by way of Catherine Montaigne. That was because he, Victor, Ruth, and their buddies back home on Torch had started wondering if the traditional view of Manpower might not have been . . . less than complete, given the fact that they now have evidence that it was acting more like a star nation than a conventional transstellar. At that point, even they had more of an itch they couldn't scratch than any sort of a theory to explain what had changed or how. Like a certain mongoose in a Rudyard Kipling story they had to go "run and find out."

Mike Henke doesn’t start to ask questions about “Why is Manpower is acting like a star nation?” until after the Battle of Spindle in February 1922, because up until that point nobody realizes that the Bad Guys™ are actually managing to throw around entire SLN fleets. Up until that point, everything that’s been done could have been — and, in the case of Monica, demonstrably was done — by one or more of the transstellars. Maneuvering entire fleets is considerably more ambitious, and that’s the point at which Mike’s “I Am Suspicious™” button gets punched. The Battle of Spindle is only a couple of weeks before Oyster Bay, and Oyster Bay — delivered by parties unknown — on the heels of Spindle begins adding point to the I Am Suspicious™ buttons of the more paranoid members of the intelligence community. The fact that Manpower’s representative — Anisimovna — was involved in both Monica and New Tuscany certainly helps to focus suspicions (especially Mike’s, Khumalo’s, and Baroness Medusa’s) on Mesa, but they are still thinking in terms of the very transstellar which the Alignment has designed from the beginning as their stalking horse. When Beowulf informs both Haven and Manticore about Operation Raging Justice, it only ratchets up the focus on — and perplexity over — why Manpower and its transstellar allies are pursuing the policy they are. And, of course, how they can get away with it.

Meanwhile, Anton and Victor, thanks to their engineering problems, take a long time to get back to Hainuwele/Parmaley Station. It’s not until the first week of April 1922 that they actually leave Parmaley Station and head for Nouveau Paris, and they arrive there only after Honor has been recalled to Manticore in the wake of Oyster Bay. So it’s not until late April/early May that Eloise Pritchart learns about the Alignment’s existence, and it’s not until the first week of June that Eloise and Elizabeth do their “handshake” treaty of alliance.

People were wondering what the hell Manpower and its transstellar buddies thought they were doing, and people were wondering how they had the juice to pull it off, but nobody had gotten past the notion that it was Manpower (and the aforesaid transstellar buddies) doing it.

The reason I’m stressing that is that Manpower was there specifically to be suspected in the Mesan Alignment’s grand scheme of things. Up until Jack McBryde peeled up a corner of the mask and let Anton and Victor see what was hidden behind it, things were proceeding (in a strategic sense, despite any tactical setbacks) in the direction Albrecht & Inc. wanted them to proceed.

And, let me stress again, that Albrecht was already pulling people out of Mesa. The core of the Onion had already begun disappearing down the rabbit hole long before Green Pines, and until Anton and Victor turned up — alive — in the Haven System to blow the whistle, not even Mike Henke would have considered invading and occupying the Mesa System while they were still trying to figure out what levers in the Solarian League Manpower could pull.

(Well, Mike being Mike, the notion of going after Mesa would undoubtedly have warmed the cockles of her heart after New Tuscany and Spindle :lol:, but at that point she had other fish to fry. In particular, despite Spindle there was no official declaration of war between the League and Manticore and taking a major fleet inside the League’s frontiers, even to attack a star system which wasn’t a League member, could only have helped ensure that the military confrontation with Old Chicago would get even worse.)

Once Eloise shared Victor and Anton’s findings with Elizabeth, everything changed. At that point, it was time for Albrecht to get everyone he could out as quickly as he could.

And, by the way, there is an additional defense in depth built into both the Alignment’s long-term plans and into Operation Houdini specifically designed to cause everyone but the Grand Alliance to conclude that these allegations about vast interstellar conspiracies are the paranoid ravings of a batch of unhinged neobarb imperialists who have only intermittent contact with reality.

Pretty well designed for that, actually, if I do say so myself. :twisted:[/quote]

...you deeply terrify me. Your Diabolical Celeryness.
~*~


I serve at the pleasure of President Pritchart.

Javier & Eloise
"You'll remember me when the west wind moves upon the fields of barley..."
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Re: Out of order snippet? WHAT out of order snippet?
Post by pappilon   » Mon Sep 25, 2017 2:49 pm

pappilon
Rear Admiral

Posts: 1072
Joined: Tue Sep 05, 2017 11:29 pm

runsforcelery wrote:Remember that Zilwicki sent back channel word (more or less) of where he was going to Honor by way of Catherine Montaigne.


Couple of quick questions.
1) Didn't Cachat & Zilwicki go to visit Honor at her flagship just before departing for Mesa.

2) After being outed on interstellar TV for being the super secret superspy and retiring to Torch to aid them in their Intelligence agency, is Manticore even his government anymore.? Realizing, of course, I am exercising my 1st person omniscience and not the view from the Honorverse.
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The imagination has to be trained into foresight and empathy.
Ursula K. LeGuinn

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