By Diana Wynne Jones
For aeons the mages of Arth, a neighbouring universe, were looting Earth of rules, concepts and applied sciences, the entire whereas manipulating occasions and growing devastating catastrophes for his or her personal edification. Now this brazen piracy is threatening Earth with overall extinction. it truly is as much as the hoop, a mystery society of witches and warlocks devoted to the continuance and health of mankind, to struggle the virtuous, unbendingly conventional stronghold of Arth with an arsenal of mental sabotage, inner dissension -- and kamikaze intercourse ...
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Zillah reached a floury hand for her own cup of tea. " said her sister. "All the people working on the capsule think we're taking it up into space to meet UFOs. They think we're a bit mad, but they trust us. Some quite skeptical ones are seriously rethinking their position on aliens. And I'm the only one of the Ring who ever goes near the capsule. " Zillah relaxed further. Mark was never likely to have been there. She let the devastating misery of that discovery ebb away and laughed a little.
They grumbled to their aunt that Mum's career seemed to mean more to her than they did. Why else was she always away giving lectures ? Only Gladys was spared human grumbling, and she often came back from another place to find herself in an accusing ring of cats long past their feeding time. For she took to sitting, hour after hour, on the Normandy beach forest borders of the pirate world, watching through notional spyglasses for any activity in Laputa-Blish (as it came to be called). Her skin grew flabbier and more blotched.
It's the only thing that makes sense," she said. " After another long silence, Amanda said, "I agree. How do we get there? Whom do we send? " Maureen, subdued and still for once, added, "Yes, and how do we keep what we do secret from these people? " The discussion that followed this was, to begin with, slow and heavy and very, very serious. All four of them were overwhelmed with the nature of what they were discussing. This was war, against an enemy who knew all their weapons, and it made every other war look small and local and feeble by comparison.
A Sudden Wild Magic by Diana Wynne Jones