Helen of Troy is in mourning for her dead husband, Paris. Killed in single combat with the merciless Apollo, his body is nothing but a scorched and blasted thing. Hockenberry, her lover, still sneaks from her bed after their nights of lovemaking. And the gods still strike out from the besieged Olympos, their single-molecule bomb casings quantum phase-shifting through the moravecs' force shield and laying waste to Ilium. Or so Hockenberry and the amusing little metal creature, Mahnmut, have tried to explain to her. Helen of Troy does not give a fig about machines. She must dress for the funeral. And man and the gods and the unknown players in this tragedy must prepare for the final act. And a battle that will decide the future of the universe itself.