Monthly Archives: May 2017

TEoD: Chapter 8: Return of the Ice Maiden

Whew, sorry, guys!  I had vacation and then something wonderful happened.

Anyway, thanks for sticking with me.  Back to Preston University…

Michael gives Isis a call.  In the previous book, Isis was a tad annoyed that he had waited so long to contact her.  And in the book previous to that, even more annoyed.  This time, she barely bats an eye when the man who kissed her and said he wanted her in his life…ONCE AGAIN only contacts her when he wants something.  So I guess she’s getting used to Michael Murphy’s own particular brand of affection.

As he dials, he reminisces about Isis:

At first he thought that she might be an ice maiden.  She seemed preoccupied much of the time, interested only in her work.


After her father’s death, she had lived her life in hiding.  Perhaps in an effort to avoid dealing with her loss, she holed up in her office at the Parchments of Freedom Foundation in Washington, D.C.

Yep, because when a woman has a successful career, it can only be because she is hiding some deep inner pain and failing to deal with it in a healthy manner.  Can’t just be because she’s had a lifelong passion for the work, as established in Babylon Rising (written by a different author, natch).

Also, Phillips is not only retconning Greg Dinallo’s establishment of Isis’s character, but his own.  Because in the previous book, Phillips himself made mention of Isis dating other men in her life.  So, much as Murphy would no doubt prefer that she just sit by her phone, awaiting his calls while he does whatever he wants, it appears she has a life beyond being an ice maiden.

Sigh.  Anyway, to add insult to injury, Murphy remembers “his rescue of Isis from the bandits” on Ararat, but not that time Isis rescued his ass in the sewers in Babylon Rising. Figures.  And once he talks to her, although he says he’s missed her, he gets right down to business—he’ll be in Washington in a few weeks, and in the meantime, would like Isis to look into this “King Yamani” guy.  Then the “class bell” rings (because I guess Murphy teaches middle school now), and they have to hang up.

Now off the phone, Murphy gets an update on the possible fingerprint of Meth’s that he lifted in the last book.  You’d think such an assignment would be far outside her job description, but she nonetheless is keeping an ear open for a call from the FBI.  Being an ultra-conservative RTC, Murphy makes a snide remark about government bureaucracy (because doubtless the FBI has nothing better to do than examine a fingerprint on a Band-Aid submitted by a rogue archaeology professor) and departs for class.

Oh, wait.  That “five minutes” Isis was worried about?  No big thing to Murphy.  First, catch up on the FBI.  Then, set a lunch date with Pastor Bob Wagoner.  Shari took a call from him, and he needs Murphy’s advice.  Because who doesn’t.

So, ready for another of Murphy’s classes?  Well, too bad, because it’s coming up next!

TEoD: Chapter 7: Sparkling Eyes

So, while Murphy was busy getting his ass handed to him by ninjas and, umm…big guys, Shari was working until 2 a.m. grading “all the book reports and test papers.”

I continue to be astonished that book reports are even a thing in a supposedly-advanced archaeology class.  Did Phillips and LaHaye not remember college at all?

(Well, LaHaye went to Bob Jones University, so maybe book reports were a thing, after all…)

Anyway, for her hard work, Murphy gives Shari a hearty “thanks,” and Shari’s eyes twinkle.  Ew.

Murphy then regales Shari with an account of the abandoned underground amusement park with ninjas (and yes, when I actually type it out like that, it does sound a bit silly, doesn’t it?) and his theory of what Meth wants him to find.

Murphy blathers on about the ark of the covenant, getting Shari’s hopes up:

“You don’t think he’s found the Ark, do you?” Shari’s eyes were wide with excitement.  “That would be one of the greatest archaeological finds ever!”

Well, I guess so, Shari.  And I know you don’t own a TV and all, but are you sure you want to find this thing?

But no.  Apparently conceding that he shot his wad with the whole Noah’s Ark thing (an ark which, as we saw, remains lost), it is declared that Meth wants Murphy to re-find two of the three things which were apparently in the Ark (and then, I guess, lost somehow): Aaron’s Rod and a gold jar that held manna.

But Murphy is still at a loss about the whole “King Yamani” thing.  So Shari suggests that he enlist Isis’s help.  Or, as she puts it:

“I’ll give you a clue.  Stunningly beautiful.  Red hair.  Sparkling green eyes.”

Okay, first of all, Shari, that’s three clues.  Second of all, it’s just kinda odd that you characterize Isis as “stunningly beautiful” and her eyes as “sparkling.”

Except that Phillips is apparently contractually obligated to always refer to Isis’s eyes as “sparkling.”  Have I missed something all my life?  I know people with beautiful eyes, but none of them sparkle.  Or twinkle, like Shari’s.  Maybe Phillips is just really into sparkling vampires.