Book Recommendation: “I’ll take care of Scotland” by T. Shadowfoot

This book by an ununderstandably hitherto unknown author is a master piece. It tells the story of 5 friends, Chedo, Zewi, Zeke, Marvy, and Olbri – a pentagram of morally superior agents if you will-, who conspire to spoof the guardian candidates of two agents of the other faction whose guts they hate because they play the game so much better than them. These portals are located in Scotland, and since they cannot get there in person, and are too arrogant to try and find colleagues who could take down the portals, they decide that one of them, Chedo, should actually spoof, the others agree to level small accounts for the designated bot master to use.

The first part of the book details the development of their plan, colorfully describes the increasing satisfaction – almost intoxication -, with themselves and their illusion of power, and the ever accelerating spiral of self deception and self-proclaimed righteousness. This part ends with their last meeting before the spoof operation starts; as they part ways the designated bot master turns around one last time and makes the promise to his friends that gives this novel the title: “Don’t worry, guys. I’ll take care of Scotland.”

Book cover
Shadowfoot – I’ll take care of Scotland

The second part starts with a long passage of a sober, sometimes even technical description of the bot master’s preparations, flows into an account of his first exercises and then gives way into a pulsating, mesmerizing frenzy of ever increasingly frequent portal killings. Things are looking good. Then he starts to become careless, goes on a holiday during the crucial phase of his operation, and even finds a spiritual side in himself: He spends hours at a Via Dolorosa nearby without doing anything.

The story ends in the fiasco that was foreseeable: The operation fails, the bot accounts get cut down one by one – here, the narration skillfully matches and weaves the beat of the portal killings with the pulse of the bot accounts that Chedo uses being banned -, and finally culminates in his actual account being cut down and at the same time, him realizing that he did not have enough bots with levels high enough to match those of the remaining guardian candidate targets.

His breakdown, the horrific mélange of weeping, regret, stupefiedness, and terror at the thought of having to report his friends that he failed utterly in the task with which they trusted him is reported in piercing epic breadth, but then abruptly ends. The last chapter concludes with a short and terse, but nevertheless intense and moving scene in which, at the first meeting after the catastrophe, his friends do not speak to him, but with tears in their eyes and shaken by their own sadness and disappointment, self-loathing for having trusted Chedo with something that important, and furious anger proceed to beat him with large sticks, poke him with red hot iron rods, and finally call him terrible names.

The tone of the book oscillates between a happy go lucky style and gloomy, dark-depressive narration which nicely corresponds with the original optimism and happiness of the 5 friends about their cunning plan and their bitter failure in the end. You will happily ignore the little flaws of this master piece. For example, the role of the character of Olbri in the story is unclear. He occasionally gives his legal opinion on things, but otherwise curiously has no relevance in anything.

All in all, this book is a fascinating read, you will not be able to put it down after you have started reading it. It is available as a paperback from Spooferetto Publishers for 149€. A hardcover edition is also available for 150€, and it comes with a little construction kit for a cardboard Onyx Guardian Medal Portal (your choice of the models ‘Achanalt’ or ‘Tyrebagger’) that you can assemble yourself and keep on a window ledge or your work desk as a memento to not become too self-righteous and a reminder that spoofing is not ok.

Mind boggling.” – Evening Post
Intensely educational.” – Dr. R. Esonator, Modslot University at Jarvistown
Horrifyingly instructive!” – The Loretto Sentinel
Don’t read this before you go to sleep.” – Spoofmag
This novel will make you forget to recharge your own guardian portals for days.” – The Enlightened Post

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