The sport of challenge she found in War and rightly judged to be the secretof Life itself - and the key to the endless domination, subjugation, andeverlasting, everchanging glory that filled her head and heart with prideand fury, joy and hatred, all the wise and terrible truth that flared from hersea-blue, empty eyes. Rightly she judged that she was the purest,strongest force on Earth. Even old Dragon was just another challenger,regularly bested, shamed, and raised again.She never had been inclined to try eating Dragon, though (unlike Scaraband a few others remembered only in song and story). More meat therethan her efficient, svelte furnace of a belly would ever need, anyway.Her only fear was that that same always-hungry belly would let a child outthat shared the contradictory fire and blackness of her soul. Of all theothers, only she had mastered and contained both Light and Dark, Goodand Evil, the Two Forces that made her both eternal and invincible. Theyechoed through her brutal heart and burst from her beak in the damning,shattered screams of her myriad priests and professional liars, castingforth a Truth undeniable that spoke of talons through your spine and amerciless eating.Most of the other animals froze in terror at that voice, falling upon theground and loosing their tears and bowels. Some few among the strongestand most deadly (such as the Lion of the North and vicious, long-livedSand Scorpion), crawled to serve her, hoping to preserve their power byavoiding challenge.The mere concept of the Two was enough to befuddle the other animals -even Dragon with his Eight Ways could not keep corollaries of the Twofrom infesting his control layers and distorting their behaviour. Polarcapitalist chancres covered his face and eyes with issues now, anddiscoloured, necrotic memory tissues (caused by attempts to reconcile theTwo using the Maoist/Orwellian viral meme injection method) made hislimbs and thoughts grow sluggish. Only Eagle could hold such universalcontradictions in her mind.Even so, some would always challenge her. She made sure of that - noteven the suicide of opposing her could be refused, such was her power.There were ways and ways to die. The last passive opponent would behaving trouble reproducing its population accurately for some generations,her latest thunderbolts being possessed of a rather long-lasting destructiveaura. Something extra-nasty her technical castes had dug up or extorted ordeveloped recently, she understood.