Thursday, 14 August 2014

London

Manson Everard and Charles Whitcomb are among a group of recruits to the Time Patrol from the period 1850-2000. For Everard's time, which presumably means this same period, the Patrol has three milieus, each with its headquarters in the years 1890-1910, and branch offices in other decades. The Western milieu headquarters are in London.

My question is: does the Patrol have an office in each major city, including London, and a Western milieu headquarters which also happens to be in London? In other words, does the Patrol have one establishment in London or two? When Everard twice visits the London office, is he visiting milieu headquarters or not?

He visits this London office in 1894 and again in 1885. That second date is before the existence of milieu HQ so presumably the London office is not the same as HQ, which we therefore never see? This makes sense because the office seems to deal only with local business, not with one and a half centuries of temporal traffic.

The London Victorian office is fronted by Dalhousie & Roberts, Importers, too conservative to have adopted electric lighting yet. The local agent, Mainwethering, is dealing with a German fanatic from 1917 who, having learned of time travel from an incautious anthropologist, has come to 1894 to assassinate Queen Victoria. Mainwethering also deals with the Balkan Question and the opium trade although he does not explain how either of these impacts on time travel. As I said, local issues.

I expect that advanced training for an Unattached agent would involve some self-assessment of his whole career to date, thus that the older Everard might be surreptitiously present both during his training at the Academy and also during his first meeting with Mainwethering. In the latter case, he could simply be in an adjoining room so that, afterwards, he and Mainwethering would be able to agree a joint assessment of the younger Everard's performance.

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