“I wasn’t.” Embarrassment turns to indignation in short order. It’s a palatable undercurrent in The Dame’s voice when she continues with her rather emotional response. “Even if any Queen [the queen of any England] had asked me herself, I would NEVER stoop to betray my own Race.” In the heat of the moment, the Dame has made that leap of faith and assumed a lot, just like Mondo was banking on that she would. Later, much later, when cooler heads prevail, the Dame will have a completely different point of view—it will be detached and professional—such is her modus operandi.
Remember: in her day job, her real life, Dame Chillingsworth bosses spies, is not herself a spy, is very familiar with the deviousness of spies, and, as such, is predisposed to at best treat them as suspect. The “Napoleonic Code”, the presumption of guilt, taken to the extreme because spies are the accused: Guilty until proven innocent beyond a shred of doubt.
“I figured as much. And, Queen Mary is too smart to be a party to anything so stupid as the coercing of Xi into murdering his cousin Ancient Mia. But … being human, the queen here and her husband the king will still ally themselves with the Federation—choosing to overlook the allegation that they [the Federation] also tried to coerce me into murdering her [the queen].” The girl pauses for effect, and then continues her summation. “This reeks of male egotism at its most arrogant and bombastic—and it screams Section. Likely, Ms. McCombs would have advised you two against such alleged action and you would have summarily ignored her. Now, it’s just as likely in the fallout that you Mr. Eliot will be forced into early retirement and Ms. McCombs will succeed you Mr. Eliot.” Mondo winks at McCombs. “As for you, Sir Sheinwald, whether your Queen was party to this alleged act or not, if she was she’d never admit to it on or off the record anyways, it’s also very likely that you too will be sent packing once Dame Chillingsworth has had words with your boss [your Britain’s queen]. Of course, there’s no proof that these things [the harnesses] are your [the Federation’s] doing—no smoking gun. No matter, even if you had succeeded in allegedly having a coerced Xi destroy his cousin [Ancient Mia], the Dragons [who would have figured it out] would not have been so forgiving like the Havenites. Likely, you’ll also had some lame backstory concocted that although you’ll were not harnessed you too were somehow under their influence, forced against your will to do their bidding—which would explain the sham that you tried to perpetrate on me on the Enterprise while I was being brainwashed. Well, no matter. Things ended well after all. The good guys triumphed, and the bad guys lost. I so love happy endings.”
Of course, the end of a story is sometimes the beginning of another, one that details both the origin of a fixed point in time and a time paradox of sorts, one that begets a host of unanswerable questions.
Restated succinctly …
Upon disassembly, Toy reveals its heinous past and portends its equally horrendous future—for a scant few seconds a legend stamped upon its forehead is visible, readable no matter what language the reader understands: U. S. Army Air Corps, Project TOY, offset lessee ‘Royal Netherlands Defense Force Ltd’ et al – Bendix MFG’s Model 1941-A7 “Octant” – Enterprise Serial #NX-01 (Prototype); Patent 659507, John Moses Browning (inventor).