Six Sentence Sunday, 16 December 2012 (Cleopatra’s Ironclads)

The regalia of Isis, Mother of Steam, was heavy indeed, with its crown of gears and twin stacks, a visual pun on the traditional headdress. Gods were shape-shifters, after all, and the Great Mother was no different in that respect. It took some help, and a great deal of stage-managing, for a a woman of seventy to bear that weight as if she were a girl of seventeen. 

The trumpets blared, and the hard blue sky swallowed them, the sun flashing off the instruments of the mechanical orchestra, as the great doors opened on their hydraulic hinges and the veil of smoke parted to reveal the Incarnate Isis, bearing her instruments of office. 

She counted her own heartbeats, and they slowed: odd that paying attention to something made it slow. Her heart was rowing her forward in time, toward her own rendezvous with the Fates.

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9 Responses to Six Sentence Sunday, 16 December 2012 (Cleopatra’s Ironclads)

  1. Well that has piqued my interest. Good six. 😊

  2. Sue says:

    Loved the intermingling of instruments and the orchestra – it flowed full circle.

  3. Vivien Dean says:

    That last sentence is absolutely stunning. Well done!

  4. Obviously you’ve vered from the historical Cleopatra a long time ago, to have her at 70. is this near the end? Or is most of the book a flashback?

    • epbeaumont says:

      This is an excerpt from the epilogue, so yes, this is where the history goes alternate. Most of the book, as I wrote it, hews pretty closely to the historical record except for a thread running alongside about an alternate path for development of technology they already had.

  5. Steampunk Egypt-Rome – interesting! Cool excerpt!

    • epbeaumont says:

      I’m a serious history-of-technology buff as well as a Cleopatra fan, so this was a natural–and Joyce Tyldesley’s biography of Cleopatra, with its allusion to the Arabic tradition of Cleopatra the virtuous scholar-queen, served by way of muse for this amazingly fun project.

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