1632 Snippets

1636 The Atlantic Encounter – Snippet 12

1636 The Atlantic Encounter - Snippet 12 Chapter 7 The North Atlantic A thousand years before Gordon was born, and more than six hundred years before the date on the calendar, people had made the crossing that Challenger was undertaking now. Their boats were even shallower draft and their instruments were far more primitive. They had not possessed an ephemeris or twentieth-century maps. Gordon also knew that they didn't have helmets with big horns, either: that was just in the movies and the comic books. But horny helmets or no, the Vikings...

1636 The Atlantic Encounter – Snippet 11

1636 The Atlantic Encounter - Snippet 11 "I am sure you do. You know everything that goes on in that room." He pointed behind him. "My patron may be his nephew, but he is not fond of being suddenly summoned by the red robe. I should like to know why." Nephew, Servien thought. But the only nephew the cardinal might summon…would be Jean: Jean Armand de Maillé-Brézé -- whom he had appointed, at age seventeen, to be grand-maître de la navigation. The Admiral of France. The soi-disant Admiral of France. Servien caught the guardsman's eye again,...

1636 The Atlantic Encounter – Snippet 10

1636 The Atlantic Encounter - Snippet 10 Chapter 6 Paris, France If Étienne Servien had learned only one thing in the service of the crown, it was that men were subject to many perils, and that many of them ultimately proved fatal. It seemed trite to think of men's lives that way, like playing cards discarded on a table, like coins spent in the market, like wooden soldiers in the hands of a child: but it was nothing if not apt. To the great gamblers, and the great generals, most men were exactly that: elements of a wager, resources to be put...

1636 The Atlantic Encounter – Snippet 09

1636 The Atlantic Encounter - Snippet 09 "There was so much to learn," she said, without looking back. "So many books, so many papers, so many new techniques. He took it all in like a drunkard who could not help himself. "He died in Grantville," she said at last, turning to face Gordon. "He was simply too old -- his heart was weak, and I could not save him. Even Doctor Nichols could not save him. It was just as it was when my mother died: my father could not save her either. "I was ready to journey back to Jansköping. I was going to return...

1636 The Atlantic Encounter – Snippet 08

1636 The Atlantic Encounter - Snippet 08 "Well." The Dutch sailing master's face brightened, as if he might now have an opportunity to affect the direction Challenger would be going. "The best way is to follow the trade winds, the northeast winds, and make for the Caribbean." "The Caribbean? I don't want us to --" "It's not necessary to follow them all the way, Chehab," he said. "It depends on just where the edge of the trade-wind zone lies. Somewhere south of Gibraltar we could cut west, perhaps bear for Bermuda or Virginia. We'd have to...

1636 The Atlantic Encounter – Snippet 07

1636 The Atlantic Encounter - Snippet 07 Neither of the brothers had any inclination to go aloft, where more nimble and agile men and boys scrambled and climbed, heedless of the distance they might fall if they should put a foot wrong. Pete had witnessed an amazing display by a little Alsatian who signed on with the crew after going up the mainmast in record time; it was one of the first times either of them had seen the sailing master look impressed. * * * A few weeks after Pete, the radio and its operator arrived and came aboard Challenger....

1636 The Atlantic Encounter – Snippet 06

1636 The Atlantic Encounter - Snippet 06 Next to them stood two women: one was younger, from her stance and attire a servant of some sort, and the other, a woman nearer their age, was looking up defiantly at the main deck of Challenger, arms crossed over her chest, her face full of anger. "Someone you know?" Pete asked. "Not yet," Gordon said. "But I have the feeling I'm about to." He walked toward the argument, wondering what it was about. Maartens had an unfolded sheet in his hand and he shook it at the two men -- big, burly Dutchmen who...

1636 The Atlantic Encounter – Snippet 05

1636 The Atlantic Encounter - Snippet 05 Chapter 3 Stephane Hoff lifted his pen, dipped it into the inkwell and poised it over the paper; but before he could even write the customary polite salutation, he leaned his head back on the chair and set it aside with a sigh. Working for Monsieur Servien was never easy. He was demanding, precise and -- as Hoff had learned quickly -- astute enough to see through the words and determine if anything of consequence was actually being said. Other than false information, the provision of which was out of...