Wild Cards Volume X — Double Solitaire
Directly evolving out of events in Jokertown Shuffle, the jumper story arc begun in One-Eyed Jacks was interrupted by this novel. Dealer's Choice, the final novel of the jumper triad, was published after this volume although chronologically they happen concurrently.
Fleeing the Rox, Blaise steals Tachyon’s sentient starship and leaves for the planet Takis. Left stranded on Earth in the pregnant body of a teenage runaway, Dr. Tachyon makes a deal with the treacherous Network to reach the Takisian homeworld. Accompanied by Jay Ackroyd and Mark Meadows, the doctor races against time to catch Blaise, and reverse his jump into the body of Kelly Ann Jenkins, before "she" is forced to give birth. Upon reaching Takis, Tachyon must navigate not only the political and military chaos that follows Blaise, but also cope with his new role as a female in a patriarchal society.
The cover shown here depicts Dr. Tachyon in the body of Kelly Ann Jenkins, confronting his grandson Blaise while a battle rages over the planet of Takis. The art was by comic book artist Timothy Truman. Note that the illustration does not quite match descriptions of the character's relative sizes. Blaise was said to be much taller than Kelly. Also, Tachyon/Kelly apparently brought a sword to a gun fight.
Major Characters Edit
The majority of Double Solitaire takes place on the planet Takis and therefor considerably narrowed the spectrum of familiar cast members available to play important roles. After early appearances by the Turtle, Dr. Bradley Finn, Troll, Dr. Cody Havero, Jube the Walrus, and even a cameo by the reclusive Fortunato, the protagonists become limited to mostly Tachyon, Mark Meadows, and Jay Akroyd. Familiar villains included Blaise, Durg, and Zabb. Accordingly, several other characters are introduced for the first time, mostly Takisians, of which a partial list follows.
- Capt. Bounty - a Network operative sent to collect on a debt.
- Hastet - a Tarhiji woman.
- L'Gura - Ruler of House Vayawand.
- Malika - a female Morakh.
- Mona'ella - a Takisian princess, daughter of L'Gura.
- Nesfa - a female alien symbiote employed by the Network.
- Roxalanna - Tachyon's eldest sister.
- Taj - Regent of House Ilkazam.
- Yimkin - a Takisian nobleman.
- This Wild Card “mosaic novel" is actually a solo work by Dr. Tachyon's creator, Melinda M. Snodgrass. She dedicated the book to fellow author Victor Milan.
- In this volume the reader finally gets to see one of the cybernetic Ly'Bahr first mentioned in Aces High.
"Goddamn you! If you kill my baby I'll never forgive you!" - Dr.Tachyon