Sunday, 26 October 2014
The Man Who Counts, Chapter VIII
"...gripped a bow as long as himself in his foot talons, drew the cord with both hands and let fly, plucked a fresh arrow from the belly quiver with his teeth..."
-Poul Anderson, The Van Rijn Method (New York, 2009), p. 389.
As with driving a car, the entire body is used. (One sf film had US fighter pilots capturing and immediately flying alien aircraft even though the body shape was entirely different.)
Diomedean weapons also include:
weighted nets, pulling enemies to their deaths;
repeater blowguns with bayonets;
The Fleet army is coordinated by horn calls whereas the Flock has a more flexible Whistler corps. Since "'...the fat Eart'ska...'" (van Rijn) correctly predicts the outcome of a battle, Commander Trolwen jokes that maybe he should command and Tolk, the rescued Herald, more thoughtfully agrees that "'Perhaps...he will.'" (p. 391)
Van Rijn's machinations transcend the differences between species.