Eric Flint Wiki

The Picnic, Jan Steen, 1650-1675

Grantville Gazette VIII was published on-line in July, 2006


"Not a Princess Bride"[]

By Terry Howard

Jimmy Dick gives sage advice to a downtimer about how to break up a teenage romance.

"The Painter's Gambit"[]

By Iver P. Cooper

Note: This story also appears in the print version of Grantville Gazette V.

This story traces the courtship of Birgit Wegener by a young artist, Felix Gruenfeld of Amsterdam. Along the way, Felix goes to Grantville, learns to play chess and gains some success as an artist. Significant parts of the story take place as a series of letters exchanged by Felix and Birgit, linking narrative segments from the point of view of one or the other. The adventures of Felix Gruenfeld continue in First Impressions in Grantville Gazette XVIII. The cover art for Grantville Gazette XII purports to be an etching done by Felix.

"Dear Sir"[]

By Chris Racciato

The opening quoted above is a rewrite of the classic Nigerian scam, rewritten to dupe a 17th century German investor into helping someone from Grantville. The story is set in the Grantville police station as the victim learns that he has been duped. The humor of this short story comes from the interaction between a hardened 20th century policeman and a minor 17th century nobleman, mediated through an interpreter.

"The Sons of St. John"[]

By Jay Robison

What remains of the Celtic church (some monks and a fantastic illustrated Bible) comes to Grantville. Presbyterian preacher Enoch Wiley gives them land that was willed to his church by a down-timer, after working out his grief for his son, who had become an Episcopalian monk, and had been left up-time.

"Prince and Abbot"[]

By Virginia DeMarce

Conflicts about adding Fulda to SoTF, some uptimers are kidnapped, Wes Jenkins remarries.

The story was later reprinted in DeMarce's book 1635: The Tangled Web.

"A Question of Faith"[]

By Anette Pedersen

Note: This story also appears in the print version of Grantville Gazette V.

Traumatized artist priest Johannes has taken refuge in Grantville, but realizes he is being led to choose between the church or the Americans. He is torn because in some ways he disagrees with both. He decides to choose his own path. When Denmark becomes an enemy of the Americans, he advises visiting Prince Ulrik to do same.

"Got My Buck"[]

By Barry C. Swift

Note: This story also appears in the print version of Grantville Gazette V.

A group of mercenary soldiers is slated to attack the Grantville-protected region the next spring after the 1632 Croat cavalry raid detailed in 1632.

Encouraged by one of the soldiers named Herman, Wili, who is a survivor of a prior clash of arms with the Americans, tells a tale a man, who he only knew as "the new guy", had told him of being fed by an elderly resident of Grantville while passing through the strange town.

The old man had shown him his .22 caliber rimfire rifle, and said that it was the only weapon he owned; that the swords and pistols on the wall were trophies. He said that he'd received the rifle as a child, that it had been his older sister's, and that she had learned to shoot as a child, just as he had. Here Wili interrupted his story to mention that the old man thought the .22 was a "real weapon", but that the swords and pistols weren't "real weapons". He then went on to tell about hunting licenses and the week-long, limit-of-one, deer hunting season, mentioning that the old man had gone out every year, but never got a deer.

The new guy then told of seeing the mass grave of many of the Croats as he wandered through the town, which made him glad the he had not contradicted the old man's talk of the town's ordinary people, men and women alike, had dealt with the Croats; and how he, with his .22, had finally "gotten his buck".

Before the battle the next morning, the new guy was missing from the camp, having left only his pike behind where he'd slept. The story ends with Wili silencing his cohorts after telling the grim outcome of his tercio being annihilated within without coming within 75 yards of the Americans, concluding that the new guy was "smarter than he looked."

"Capacity For Harm"[]

By Richard Evans

Note: This story also appears in the print version of Grantville Gazette V.

Set in 1633 in Belfort, Franche Comté.

Tomas Eichemann a huckster who works under the name Doctor Lebenenergie who had previously visited Grantville and discovered how to create a hand cranked electric generator has been "invited" to demonstrate how the device worked to members of the inquisition. 

Despite the good testimonies of his previous clients and his willingness to help the clergy they decide to test out how his device can be used to cause harm on him rather than letting him leave. 

"Flight 19 to Magdeburg"[]

By Jose J. Clavell

Missing Bermuda triangle planes, Flight 19, turn up at Magdeburg airfield. It's a science fiction story published in a downtime magazine - written by John Simpson!

"Rolling On"[]

By Karen Bergstralh

Martin the smith shows his former masters around, gets them to invest in the latest uptime/downtime innovations.

"Three Innocuous Words"[]

By Russ Rittgers

Uptimer Committees of Correspondence organizer Chip Jenkins celebrates Christmas with Katerina von Ruppersdorf. He has ordered her a new-fangled parlour stove, but the box is very small. His father has gotten revenge for the many hours of Christmases past.

Continuing Serials[]

"Joseph Hanauer, Part One: Into the Very Pit of Hell"[]

By Douglas W. Jones

A group of Jews heading to Poland stop in Grantville. The story begins before the Ring of Fire, and continues as the travelers are buffeted by rumors of war in the north and the Ring of Fire to the east. This basic scenario was outlined at the end of the nonfiction piece "The Jews of 1632" in Grantville Gazette VI.

This is the first of three Joseph Hanauer stories, continued with "Joseph Hanauer, Part Two: These Things Have No Fixed Measure" in Grantville Gazette XIII and completed with Joseph Hanauer, Part Three: All Creatures Stand in Judgment" in Grantville Gazette XIV.

"The Doctor Gribbleflotz Chronicles, Part 3: Doctor Phil's Distraction"[]

By Kerryn Offord

The redoubtable egotistical alchemist, the beloved if unlovable Herr Doctor Gribbleflotz is in danger of falling for an investment scam. Various down-timers are claiming they've proved a method of smelting aluminum and need more funds to develop the mine which has already begun low volume production. The up-timer Kubiak family who so humorously manipulate the bombastic Dr. Phil in their four year partnership revealed in this running soap opera are seeking to protect the good doctor from his passions—and coming up blank.

A happy accident intrudes as Dr. Phil visits Rudolstadt and, through a sudden shove in the back, meets the dour Pastor Kerstenmeir's youngest daughter. This adds a true love story into the mix of developed characters in this comical series of canonical "Dr. Phil" soaps.

"The Essen Steel Chronicles, Part 2: Louis de Geer"[]

By Kim Mackey

Mathematician Colette, author of the Crucibellus documents, coaxes her uncle, Louis de Geer, into acquiring downtime assets and forming a corporation to make iron/steel.

"Butterflies in the Kremlin, Part 1: A Russian Noble"[]

By Gorg Huff and Paula Goodlett

A Russian team is sent to spy in Grantville and hires an unemployed mechanic, Bernie Zeppi. The Russian prince, Vladimir Petrovich Yaroslavich, gets interested in Brandy Bates.

The story is reedited into 1636: The Kremlin Games.


"Refrigeration and the 1632 World: Opportunities and Challenges"[]

By Mark Huston

"New France in 1634 and the Fate of North America"[]

By Michael Varhola

Describes how the defensive actions of the Eastern North American Indians were unable to repulse the French invaders. Theorizes that a cooperative coalition of tribes would have done better.

"Aluminum: Will O' the Wisp?"[]

By Iver P. Cooper

There is no doubt that aluminum is a wonder metal. Pure aluminum has a density only about one-third of iron, it is as reflective as silver, and a good conductor of heat and electricity. When exposed to air, it quickly acquires a protective coating of aluminum oxide, which shields it from further corrosion. Alloys of aluminum are extensively used as structural materials in the construction of buildings and vehicles.