Yal-hune never ceases to amaze me. In the face of any adversity, she remains on equilibrium and her mind shows its depth as it works to counter and compensate imbalances. As a living example she has provided me with an invaluable tool. It's one thing to know rationally the correct course of behavior, it is another thing entirely to follow such a course when emotions from one's pasts rise to the surface and demand an entirely different course of action.
In the short span of time since our unhappy visitor's departure, Yal-hune has taken the event and transformed it into a catalyst for all sorts of good. That is one of the things I love about her - her ability to take unexpected lemons and make the most delicious glass of lemonade one has ever had the pleasure to taste.
My cell phone rings as I walk outside to retrieve the mail. It's Tech1.
"Your hunches paid off, and we have a lead on Isis. BigBro turned up a group of emails sent from public libraries in Tucson to the Galactic Mapping Project at ASU. She's set up a meeting with the director of the Project in two days at the University at 2 PM."
"That's great! What did the emails say? How much did she already reveal?"
"Not much. She merely mentioned some 'ancient documents' recently uncovered in an 'archaeological dig' that might be of interest to the project. She was very discreet. It was only because you had us put extra emphasis on the nearby institutions that we caught it."
"We've already put some agents up in Tucson, which can be used, if needed, on short notice. I doubt if she will return to the libraries now that she has her meeting, but if she does, we'll grab her beforehand."
"Don't. Let her be. If you take her, there's still Encyclopedia who will very likely be free to do something more rash. We need to tail her and get them only when they are known to be together."
"I'm sorry, old habits die hard. I'm so used to giving orders..."
"That's okay. You'll always be Tech1 as far as I'm concerned, even if I do hold the designation."
"Keep me informed on any updates. I'll be there at the university when the meeting is held. I want to get a chance to talk to her. She's a good person and her heart is in the right place, she just doesn't have a read yet on the true state of the world."
"Say hi to Yal-hune for me, will you? I miss her. Everyone at SDAI misses her. She's not an easy person to know and then let slip out of one's life completely. Do you think you could persuade her to stop by Shamballa for a visit?"
"I'll pass on your greetings and message and see what I can do."
"Do you ever wake up and realize just how damned lucky you are? Do you even have a sense of measure to be able to really comprehend the difference?"
"Yeah. I know. But, I'll tell you something...one gets used to anything - and a lot faster than one would think. You remember when you first got to fly the Borealis? How you thought it was like the best Christmas morning you could remember and nothing could top it? Then after a few weeks the thrill and mystique has worn off and flying it is fine and all, but no longer 'Christmas morning' all over again?"
"Yes, I remember."
"Well living with an extraterrestrial - a gorgeous, divine extraterrestrial woman, who has more powers than a Marvel or DC comics super-heroine, becomes much the same way - absolutely, plain-Jane normal. And with normal comes a whole host of problems one glazed over when one was just starry-eyed."
"Sure, I believe you...but still...there are moments behind the Borealis when its still Christmas morning."
"And there are moments with Yal-hune, and now Skuuinja, where I realize just how lucky I am too."
"For making it easier not to hate you."
We both laugh aloud.
"I've got some information about our galaxy neighborhood to input into the SDAI computer system archive. The universe is a lot larger place then we thought and there are a lot of worlds that are potential security threats to Earth. Life was a LOT simpler just dealing with threats like Iran, North Korea, China and Russia. Even Al Qaeda seems positively insignificant next to the threats that have faced us all these years - centuries even - that we have not known about whatsoever.
"Sure. Anytime you want to stop by, your access codes are still working."
"Thanks. Maybe I can convince Yal-hune and Skuuinja to stop by for awhile as I update the central computer."
"That would be wicked."
"You know...Epic! Wicked! Sick!"
"Ah...you've been updating the slang files?"
"No...we got a new hire, a replacement for Isis in the linguistics department. She's 19 and is a veritable fountain of current slang."
"Ah, I see. 19? She must have had high sourcing credentials? Well remember the more things change, the more they stay the same."
"Yes. She's the daughter of someone high up out at Langely who knows about SDAI. she was put on the fast-track."
"Indeed. Keep an eye on her. Ease her into the information stream."
"Yeah...keep her out of the loop. No sweat. I already have her eating out of my hand. She's 'hella thrilled' about being here."
I laugh some more. It's always fun to see change as it manifests and juxtaposes itself alongside the old."