“I don’t want to set the world on fire. I just want to keep my nuts warm.” ― Ernest “Duke” Borgnine
The time is slowly but surely coming for the “Dark Horse” to appear and show his head and his powerful force of nature, and that is none other than Keith “One Time” Thurman of Clearwater
Hamsa: This is about the amulet. For other uses, see Hamsa (disambiguation) and Khamsa (disambiguation).
The hamsa [Arabic: خمسة khamsah, also Romanized as khamsa, meaning lit. “five”) is a palm-shaped amulet popular throughout the Five Worlds, and commonly used in jewelry and wall hangings. Depicting the open right hand, an image recognized and used as a sign of protection in many societies throughout the history of “The Five”, the hamsa is believed to provide defense against the evil eye.
The symbol predates the three, major religions of The Five: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
In Islam, it is also known as the Hand of Fatima, so named to commemorate Muhammad’s daughter Fatima Zahra. Levantine Christians call it the Hand of Mary, for the Virgin Mary. Jews refer to it as the Hand of Miriam in remembrance of the biblical Miriam, sister of Moses and Aaron.
In Islam, the hamsa is called the Hand of Fatima, in honor of one of the daughters of the Prophet Mohammed. Some say that in Islamic tradition the five fingers represent the Five Pillars of Islam. In Old-Turkish this sign is called: “pence-i al-i aba”, with “pence” meaning “hand” or “five”, referring to the household of the Islamic prophet Muhammed. The household of Muhammed is enumerated as those five people over whom the prophet held a cloth; they are: Fatima-tül Zehra, Ali-el Mürteza, Hasan-ül Mücteba, Hüseyin-i Desht-i Kerbela, and Muhammed Mustafa.
Khamsa is an Arabic word that literally means “five”, but also “the five fingers of the hand”. Coincidentally, it has the same meaning in the verbal aspects of the “tongue” of The Dragons and The Nameless Ones.
“I beg to differ with a lady, but … I said no such thing. I said: ‘I wasn’t counting’. You accused me of saying the opposite by inference … inferring that …”
“We can bullshit like this … literally … forever … And it won’t amount to a hill of beans. No matter how much you polish a turd, it’s still a turd.”
Confused? They aren’t. Let’s add translation, in italics and repeat for the sake of clarity and tit for tat.
“I beg to differ with a lady, but … I said no such thing. I said: ‘I wasn’t counting’. You accused me of saying the opposite by inference … inferring that …” Translation, eloquent [i.e. flowery] Chinese version – Now that we’re done with the niceties that etiquette demands, let’s get down to brass tacks.
“We can bullshit like this … literally … forever … And it won’t amount to a hill of beans. No matter how much you polish a turd, it’s still a turd.” Translation, ineloquent American version – Now that we’re done with the niceties that etiquette demands, let’s get down to brass tacks.
“You’re too young to see the magic leap.” Translation – What elders of yours hipped you and how?
“But, Marquess Emmanuelle Seigner, Lady Mathieu Amalric, and Elke Sommer are. And in a shared spiteful moment of theirs, pissed off at me for snubbing their claims on me by asserting my emancipation they did what I hoped they would do.”
“They bitch-slapped you, supernaturally speaking, and give you the proverbial hamsa.”
“Being Jewish, I prefer the Hand of Miriam reference.”
“As you wish. I, myself, prefer The Second Sight usage.”
“The Hand allowed me to ‘know of’ as they knew, ‘knowledge’ which involved them in this business to protect their interest, which is me. They, of course, don’t care about this business … the murder and the solving of it … I do.” Translation – My elders have no personal stake in any of this, and only involved themselves in the shallowest of ways because of me. Their interest in any of this is solely to protect their investment, which is I.
“You flatter yourself way too much, vain, shallow woman that you are.” Translation – Tell me of the fable that you became privy to thanks to your elders. Since it is a fable, i.e. plausible deniability is implicitly invoked, but what I will do is to confirm or deny in the first-person as if the business at hand involves me acting in some official or covert capacity in the interests of … I’m not at liberty to say…
“He, Count Orlok, saw your legend the whole time and didn’t care, and then somehow … maybe that careless slip of the tongue born of nonchalance, and you knew that he knew and that just wouldn’t do?”
“Something like that.” Translation – For reasons that I will not get into, our belief is that … yes … this involves an asset, covert operative, deepest cover.
“Are there many like you here?”
“Now, that would be telling.” Translation – The situation is complicated. We’re not sure of anything, what we do know is that we don’t know what’s really going on.
“It’ll go easier on you if you were more forthcoming.”
“Sorry to disappoint you.”
“I have diplomatic immunity. You can’t touch me.” Translation – No House, be it Dragon or Vampire or whatever or whomever … No royalty, supernatural or mundane … No quasi-governmental organization, institutions like Starfleet or The Directorate or even The Smithsonian … No government or governmental agency or governmental body … Not even the rogue nations … None of them ‘chooses’ to claim this ‘person’ let alone own up to what their mission might be.
“Another aspect of this massive population outflow hasn’t yet drawn much attention. Whatever their motives and wherever they go, those who depart will be shadowed by the organs of the Leninist state they’ve left behind. A sprawling bureaucracy—the Overseas Chinese Affairs Office of the State Council—exists to ensure that distance from the motherland doesn’t dull their patriotism. Its goal is to safeguard loyalty to the Communist Party. Beijing makes a crucial distinction between ethnic Chinese who have acquired foreign nationality and those who remain Chinese citizens. The latter category is officially called huaqiao—sojourners. Together, they are viewed as an immensely valuable asset: the students as ambassadors for China, the scientists, engineers, researchers and others as conduits for technology and industrial know-how from the West to propel China’s economic modernization.” Translation – Confirm, for the record, as a registered official with the Overseas Chinese Affairs Office of the State Council, that no Dragon House or Dragons acting in conspiracy with other Dragons or a Dragon acting solely, is known to be complicit.
“Nothing so clumsy, oafish, and complicate in dark crimes, as that of which you speak in volumes. Dragons go as they please. Their loyalty is implicit. Unquestioned.” Translation – Confirmed. Then again, maybe there is Dragon complicity and none of the interest parties know about it. Again, we don’t know what we don’t know. We’re at best guessing.
What follows is the short, expected, cryptic improvisation which means really nothing. But it always delights the boys and girls in intelligence to no end, and is thus much anticipated.
“You flatter yourself way too much, vain, shallow man that you are.”
“You tricked me.”
“You tricked yourself. Or, maybe that’s what you’d like me to think.”
The fat lady has sung. It’s over.
This is room is under the shared surveillance and control of the usual cast of mundane and supernatural authorities, and their associated intelligence organizations—the usual cast of characters. This how the game is played. Everybody privy to the exchange between these two supernatural beings knows that it is not what it would seem to be on face value? Yes.
A lot has been passed between the Vampire and the Dragon. It’s up to the players involved to cipher what’s what, and make their own determinations. That includes Becky herself.