Timeframe: May – October 1922 PD
Cover Summary Edit
- The Mesan Alignment: a centuries-old cabal that seeks to impose its vision of a society dominated by genetic rank onto the human race. Now the conspiracy stands exposed by spies Anton Zilwicki and Victor Cachat — one an agent of Honor Harrington's Star Kingdom of Manticore, the other a Havenite operative. The outing of the Alignment has turned the galaxy's political framework topsy-turvy. Old coalitions have disintegrated. New alliances have been born.
- For starters, the long and hard-fought war between the Republic of Haven and the Star Empire of Manticore is not only over, but these bitter enemies have formed a new pact. Their common foe: the Mesan Alignment itself.
- But more information is needed to bring the Alignment out of the shadows. Now, defying the odds and relying on genetic wizardry themselves for a disguise, Zilwicki and Cachat return to Mesa—only to discover that even they have underestimated the Alignment's ruthlessness and savagery.
- Soon they are on the run in Mesa's underworld, not only hunted by the Alignment but threatened by the exploding conflict on the planet between Mesa's overlords and the brutalized slaves and descendants of slaves who have suffered under their rule for so long. But if Zilwicki and Cachat succeed in rooting out the ancient conspiracy, a great evil may be finally removed from the galaxy—and on a long-oppressed planet, freedom may finally dawn.
After bringing Mesan scientist Herlander Simões back to Haven, Anton Zilwicki and Victor Cachat decide to return to Mesa to obtain more information on the Mesan Alignment, using a Beowulf-designed physical disguise. They are accompanied by Thandi Palane, Yana Tretiakovna, Andrew Artlett and Steph Turner.
Zilwicki and Cachat's party enter Mesa in several different ways. While attempting to link up with Artlett and Turner, Palane and Cachat encounter an armed robbery attempt in Mendel's Lower Radomsko district and end up killing most of the gang. Cachat presses the survivors into his own newly formed organisation, and also makes contact with Cary Condor, Stephanie Moriarty and Karen Williams, the three survivors of Carl Hansen's seccy group whom he had previously worked with. Using his new position as a local crime lord in Lower Radomsko, Cachat establishes a connection with Jurgen Dusek, crime lord of Neue Rostock.
Meanwhile, Operation Houdini is being accelerated to remove evidence of the Mesan Alignment from the planet before the Grand Alliance can invade. Taking advantage of the supposed precedent of the Green Pines attack, the Alignment launches a series of "terrorist attacks" blamed on the Audubon Ballroom, causing thousands of deaths in which they can conceal the disappearance of people being removed under Houdini. The widespread fatalities, including among families of Mesa's security personnel, soon prompts violent reprisals by the government against the seccy population who are accused of aiding and abetting the Ballroom.
Cachat persuades Dusek to organise a resistance movement against the Mesan security forces, ahead of the crackdown and the eventual overthrow of the current regime. While Cachat, Palane and Tretiakovna aid the resistance effort, Zilwicki returns to Manticore to request a relief fleet from Duchess Harrington. When Office of Public Safety forces enter the seccy districts and begin slaughtering people indiscriminately, the gangs resist violently with stockpiled weapons, inflicting heavy losses on the OPS and driving them back. The Mesan Internal Security Directorate is sent in only to similarly suffer severe casualties until Hancock Tower is destroyed by a large kinetic energy weapon, which causes significant collateral damage in the citizens' area of Mendel. Finally, the Mesan Planetary Peaceforce is deployed to defeat Dusek's forces in Neue Rostock.
Though the MPP is able to finally bring Dusek to the brink of defeat after weeks of fighting, the damage has already been done: the seccy groups in the other districts and Mesa's other cities have managed to organize their own resistance movements, and the illusion of the security forces' invincibility has been permanently shattered. Then shortly before Dusek, Cachat and the others are to make their final stand, the Royal Manticoran Navy's Tenth Fleet under Admiral Gold Peak arrives and takes control of Mesa, bringing the bloody conflict to a close.
Aaronson | Jürgen Acker | Giacomo ibn Giovanni al-Fulan | Hamish Alexander | William Alexander | Caspar Alpina | Alvin | Gustav Anderman | Jwei-shwan Anderman | Nancy Anderson | Levi Andrade | Hugh Arai | Ariel | Seleven Arpino | Jubair Azocar | Isabel Bardasano | Oravil Barregos | Kayla Barrett | Bark Chewer's Bane | Amos Barkley | Byrum Bartel | Tunni Bayano | Beatriz | Skylar Beckert | Benjamin the Great | Andries Benkô | Chyang Benton-Ramirez | Jacques Benton-Ramirez y Chou | Lily Berenger | Binford | Caroline Bogunov | Sophie Bordás | Roldão Brandt | Harper Brantley | Camelia Brockmann | Elfride Butre | Victor Cachat | Harriet Caldwell | Thomas Caparelli | Carla | Catherine the Great | Chaz | Anastasia Chernevsky | Filiberto Chernevsky | Jackson Chicherin | Triêu Chuanli | Xavier Conde | Cary Condor | Henry Copper | George Couch | Aidan Crowder | Tabitha Crowley | Thomas Crunn | Loren Damewood | Vittoria Daramy | Davenport | Sheila Dawson | Octavian De Brassieres | Aldokim de Castilho | Albrecht Detweiler | Benjamin Detweiler | Cecilia Detweiler | Collin Detweiler | Leonard Detweiler | Athanasios Diasall | Gillian Drescher | W.E.B. Du Havel | Raphael Durkheim | Jurgen Dusek | Edson | Bachue Emmett | Csilla Ferenc | Connor Ferguson | Massimo Filareta | Kyle Fraenzl | Maysayuki Franconi | Loretta Frasch | Jack Fuentes | Geerard | Arnold Giancola | Giselle | Patricia Givens | Hasrul Goosens | Irena Gnoughy | Alexi Grigorev | Yves Grosclaude | Grosvenor | Kevin Haas | Thomas Hall | Hancock | Hanratty | Spencer Hawke | Carl Hansen | Bjørn Haraldsson | Honor Harrington | Béla Harsányi | Alessandra Havlicek | Spencer Hawke | Bea Henderson | Michelle Henke | Bohuslav Hernandez | Tamara Hess | Genora Hinkley | Adolph Hitler | Bentley Howell | Firouz Howt | Florence Hu | Walter Imbesi | Ingraham | Lajos Irvine | Bertie Jaffarally | Jenney the Hand | Jernigan | Frank Johnson | Bill Jokela | Stefka Juarez | Sharon Justice | Ayibongwinkosi Kabweza | Marilyn Kalanadhabhatla | Brad Kempthorne | Henry Kham | András Kocsis | Innokentiy Kolokoltsov | Mary Kyllonen | Bryce Lackland | Anthony Langtry | Loriane Lansiquot | Laski | Angus Levigne | Mark Lewis | Liam | Anthony Lindstrom | Jerome Llewellyn | Ragnarr Loðbrók | Kimmo Ludvigsen | Luke | James MacGuiness | Liang MacHowell | Teodosio MacKane | Magda | Denise Malden | Freddie Martinez | Janice Marinescu | Constance Mastroianni | Matheson | Benjamin Mayhew IX | Katherine Mayhew | Elaine Mayhew | Arianne McBryde | Jack McBryde | Zachariah McBryde | Christina McBryde | Shasta McGuire | François McGillicuddy | Genevieve McGillicuddy | McLeod | Timothy Meares | Mendez | Shai-gwun Metterling | Sergio Metz | Milla | Mitch | Mitchell | Catherine Montaigne | Ondøej Montoya | Leslie Montreau | Stephanie Moriarty | Juan Morris | Arkaitz Ali bin Muhammad | Randall Myers | Jean-Claude Nesbitt | Márton Neveu | Rudrani Nimbakar | Nimitz | Nine-Finger Jake | Lara Novakhovskaya | Audrey O'Hanrahan | Nolan Olsen | Thandi Palane | Michael Parmley | Calantha Patwary | Brianna Pearson | Dothan Perelló | Anton Petersen | David Pritchard | Eloise Pritchart | Toby Qorolas | Yuri Radamacher | Janine Riccardo | Sepp Richter | Rick | Meryl Rodman | Luis Rozsak | Samantha | Brock Sanchez | Oscar Saint-Just | Scott | Mason Scribner | Lee Seagraves | Fran Selig | Serengeti | William Shakespeare | Gavin Shultz | Claire Shwang | Herlander Simões | Macauley Sinclair | Zoltan Somogyi | Charlene Soulliere | Regan Snyder | Borisav Stanković | Stefan | Sugase | Grace Summers | Natchaya Suramongkol | Gunther Surekha | Anichka Sydorenko | Takahashi Ayako | Teddy | Tengku | Guillermo Thatcher | Thomas Theisman | Timmons | Donald Toussaint | Wilhelm Trajan | Yana Tretiakovna | Fred Trujillo | Marième Tsang | Nancy Turner | Steph Turner | Waldemar Tümmel | Wat Tyler | Yael Underwood | Kevin Usher | Kirsten van Noort | Joseph van Vleet | Sebastián Vandor | Jeffrey Vaughn | Malissa Vaughn | Veronica | George Vickers | Aatifa Villanueva | Ted Vlachos | Voigt | Leandro Wallace | Brandon Ward | Jiri Watanapongse | James Webster | Gail Weiss | Janice Wendel | Willi the Chin | Karen Williams | Phuong Wilson | Elizabeth III Winton | Ruth Winton | Jeremy X | Saburo X | Supakrit X | Marcos Xiorro | Alex Xu | Magda Yunkers | Zeno | Anthony Zhilov | Anton Zilwicki | Berry I Zilwicki | Helen Zilwicki | Helen Zilwicki Senior | Lars Zilwicki
- RTNS Bastille
- Brixton's Comet
- TNS Denmark Vesey
- TNS Gabriel Prosser
- Hali Sowle
- HMS Imperator
- HMS Impulse
- Luigi Pirandello
- Prince Sundjata
- Asian Confederacy
- Republic of Beowulf
- Cepheus Bond
- Republic of Erewhon
- Protectorate of Grayson
- Republic of Haven
- Star Empire of Manticore
- Silesian Confederacy
- Solarian League
- Kingdom of Torch
Abbasid Caliphate | Ajay System | Andalaman Exports | The Annals of Ayutthaya | anti-alcohol preventatives | Artinstute | Astophel System | Atkinson, McGillicuddy & Shivaprakash | Audubon Ballroom | Auger anti-armor missile | Axelrod Transtellar | Ayacucho | bacau | Balcescu System | Banco de Madrid | Banshee | Bateson University | Battle Fleet | Battle of Carson | Battle of Monica | Battle of Torch | Second Battle of Yeltsin's Star | Beacon | Beijing Coup | Beowulf Biosciences Code | Beowulf System-Defense Force | Biological Survey Corps | Black Widow | Blue Lagoon Park | Blue Mountain Dancing Clan | Board of Directors (Beowulf) | British Isles | Brookner Plaza | Butre Clan | Operation Capone | Cataphract | Cherwell Convention | celery | Central Security Agency | ceramacrete | Cerberus Security | Cerberus System | Chasnikov trunk corridor | Chicago | cloning | coffee | Columbia | Condor Owl class | Congress of the Republic of Haven | Copacabana | coramine lizard | Core | Crawford Sports Complex | credit chip | Cybercom of Mesa | Cyclops command vehicle | death penalty | Dedrick Tower | Deneb Accords | destroyer | Detweiler City | Detweiler family | Diaspora of Man | Directorate of Culture and Information | Dobzhansky | Dobzhansky terrorist attack | Dockhorn System | Eaker Boulevard | Earth's Final War | Earth's Western Hemisphere | The Envoy | Eridani Edict | External Bureau | Faber-Knapp battery | Federal Intelligence Service | Federal Investigation Agency | Final War Museum | flechette gun | Franklin Tower | frigate | Frontier Fleet | Gamma Center | Ganymede Canyons | Gascogne | General Board | Genetic Advancement and Uplift League | genetic sheathe | genetic slavery | Germany | Gladstone trunk corridor | Grand Alliance | Green Pines | Grendel | gross system product | Hadar Tower | Hakim System | Havenite-Manticoran Wars | Haldane | Hancock | Hancock Tower | Hidalgo Yard | Hirochi System | Operation Houdini | Hugo de Vries Park | The Huntington Arms | hyper generator | Ibanez trunk corridor | Imperial Andermani Navy | inertial compensator | Interservice Verification Agency | Jarrett Tower | Jessyk Combine | John Brown class | La Martine System | LAC | Lancer anti-armor rocket | Lindbergh Tower | Luna | Kapteyn 2 | khava | kinetic energy weapon | kint | Knight Tours | Kovaleski Tower | Landing | Liberal Party | light cruiser | Long-Range Planning Board | Lower Radomsko | Mack the Knife (song) | Malsathan unbeatables | Maidenstone Enterprises | Mandrake class heavy tank | Manpower Incident | Manpower Incorporated | Manticore Wormhole Junction | Masten Tower | Maya Sector | Maytag | McClintock Island | memory foam | Mendel | Merriwell trunk corridor | Mesan Alignment | Mesan Genetic Consultancy | Mesan Internal Security Directorate | Mesan Office of Investigation | Mesan Planetary Peaceforce | Mesa System | Minotaur command vehicle | missile | Mount Royal Palace | Museum of Science and Technology | New Athens | New Lodges | New Mali Central University | New University of Landing | nackel | nanotech transformation | Nessie Girls | Nat Turner class | Neue Rostock | Neue Rostock Tower | Neue-Stil Handgemenge | neural disruptor | neural whip | Noroguchi Nanotech | North Sea | Nouveau Paris | Office of Public Safety | Oort cloud | Operation Oyster Bay | Orion Transit Enterprises | papic | Patterson trunk corridor | perido | plasma rifle | pressor node | Prime System | Protector | pulser | Queen's Own | Rasmussen Tower | Operation Rat Catcher | Renaissance Factor | Rensselaer Industries | Rhodesian Rendezvous | Royal Manticoran Navy | Royal Mouser Corps | Royal Torch Army | Royal Torch Marines | Royal Torch Navy | Rukken | Saracen Tower | Scrag | Operation Serket Breach | Severesky trunk corridor | Sheba's Junction | Shrike class | shuttle | Sol System | Solarian credit | Solarian Gendarmerie | Solarian League Marine Corps | Solarian League Navy | Solarian Military Museum | spacing | Special Intelligence Service | spider drive | Stamford Tower | The Star Empire Today | streak drive | stun gun | Suds Emporium | Sukharov Tower | superdreadnought | Tableland Auditor Board | Technodyne Industries | Tester | Tobias Lines | Traccora System | treecat | tri-barrel | Trondheim Park | The Truth Will Out | Ukrainian Supremacists | United States of America | Verge | Vesey Boulevard | Visigoth System | Visigoth Wormhole Junction | Voyages Unlimited | Yawata Strike | Warshawski sail | Whirlpool Gulf | whisky | Whitman trunk corridor | Willies | Wister Haven | Zanj Rebellion
- Cauldron of Ghosts on books.simonandschuster.com
- Working title reveal at ericflint.net with information from the author in comments 169 and 195
- Snippets of the novel on Eric Flint's website
|Book Companions||Ad Astra Companions|
|HOS||House of Steel Companion||SOTF||Ships of the Fleet Calendars|
|HOSH||House of Shadows Companion||SITS||Saganami Island Tactical Simulator|
|HOL||House of Lies Companion|
|Jayne's Intelligence Review||Jayne's Fighting Ships of the Galaxy|
|JIR1||The Royal Manticoran Navy||SB1||Ship Book 1: The Havenite Sector|
|JIR2||The Havenite Republican Navy||SB2||Ship Book 2: The Silesian Confederacy|
|JIR3||The Silesian Confederate Navy||SB3||Ship Book 3: The Short Victorious War|