Trade Secret – Chapter 22

Tradedesk, Framinham Cafe

In which Jethri is properly introduced to his Uncle.

So, Jethri is not an exact duplicate of Arin; his genes have been tweaked somewhat, with the purpose of giving him his knack for salvage lots. Just as Arin is not an exact duplicate of Yuri, his genes having been tweaked to produce some other result Yuri was unable to reach on his own. And Uncle Yuri… brings us back to the question of whether he is the Uncle, or perhaps that Uncle’s younger brother, through however many generations of being tweaked somewhat. He doesn’t seem like the same person, quite, but then again who would after living through a thousand years and seeing the universe change dramatically around them?

Uncle Yuri seems more agreeable to Jethri continuing on his own path than he did back when he was talking to Grig. Perhaps it’s just that he’s had time to think it over, and an opportunity to see what Jethri has made of himself. I kind of get the feeling, too, that Dulsey is a positive influence.

And… Scout ter’Astin was not in evidence, having apparently found something to occupy him elsewhere. Pleasantly, one hopes.

11 thoughts on “Trade Secret – Chapter 22

  1. Ed8r

    I would say that Uncle Yuri is the same Uncle in the sense that he was duplicated exactly. In Dulsey’s protestations that Ariin was not, and Jethri is not, a clone, she did not include Uncle. He is a clone, I think, and thus is the “same” Uncle Cantra knew. Meanwhile, Jethri is informed that he is a “manufactured” human.

    When Jethri insists he’ll stay on the Elthoria rather than coming to work for “the family,” Uncle frowns but Dulsey laughs. I wonder if they had a small bet beforehand regarding Jethri’s likely choice. I also wonder if the reason Uncle backs down with such alacrity is because he has an exact record of the tweaks made to his own genetic makeup in order to manufacture Jethri and so he can simply create a new iteration of that design. Of course he doesn’t have Arin or even Grig available to train the new human, but the potential for recognizing fractins ought to still be there, don’t you think?

  2. Ed8r

    Glancing back at what I wrote just above sparked another thought: what if Seignur Veeoni is not just Uncle’s sister but also Jethri’s ” twin sister”? That is, what if the reason Uncle was able to have her design and manufacture fractins is because he started with the same DNA design Arin had developed to “manufacture” Jethri?

  3. Othin

    Jethri and Seignur Veeoni – nice catch.
    When Uncle met Jethri in Trade secret – he checked that Jethri’s design was valid – in so far as the talent for sensing old tech and fratcins were concerned. So it’ll be a legitimate guess that Uncle build on Jethri’s design when he found Tinsory Station still alive.

    My guess about laughing Dulsey is that she bet or told Uncle that he (the Uncle) wouldn’t be able to convince Jethri to change his course and that the Uncle would also find use in the course Jethri had set himself.
    Jethri, already showing his potential as Master Trader, would have been difficult to take control off against his wishes.
    While Jethri didn’t decide to do what the Uncle wished he still managed to further another of the Uncles goals. Jethri’s position as adopted son of the Master Trader and junior trader in the Liaden guild put him into position to help impede the impending Terran – Liaden conflict. (At least that seemed to be the track Uncle set out for Jethri – prove my predictions of war wrong). And while Arrin and the Carrensens were also working for this goal Jethri is the first to be working on the Liaden side of that equation.

    @manufactured human
    How does this differ from artificial? Is Jethri (and all the Uncle’s sisters and brothers) a violation of the Free Gene and Manumitted Human Act? Or was this law not around in Jethri’s time? Or were manufactured humans so scare that Jethri (and a lot of others) didn’t think or know about it?

  4. Paul A. Post author

    Perhaps the difference from “artificial” is that he’s manufactured out of all-natural ingredients?

  5. Ed8r

    Paul, that gave me a good chuckle I had to stifle…almost was laughing out loud at work!

    Maybe the Uncle (and therefore, Dulsey) would define a clone as an exact duplicate of an adult: throw ’em into the duplicator and let it “remake” the original. In fact, it seems we now know of another real clone: Daav.

  6. Skip

    Real clone Jen Sin yos’Phelium, Tinsori Lightkeeper. And possibly Aelliana??

    I am 99% sure it’s always been the same Uncle, resurrected, reduplicated, whatever. I think I read something. Will go check around…

  7. Skip

    These excerpts from Fandom site imply that the Uncle who placed Daav in a cloning chamber is the same guy who knew Jela and Cantra:

    “He had himself been reborn more times than he could enumerate, absent a check of the records. And, of course, in order to be reborn, one must first die.” Dragon Ship, ch 19

    “He might, thought Uncle, gazing down at the pods on Dulsey’s palm, be the only left who remembered the name of the great race of trees. Ssussdriad.” Dragon Ship,” ch 11

    ”a lifetime counted in tens of hundreds of Standard Years” — Dragon Ship, chapter 13

    Quite telling, I’d say. How many years is tens of hundreds of Standards? Well over a millennium

  8. Skip

    Uncle could be 10,000 years old. Maybe he was originally a sherieka. They were human once, according to Jela. When they first started to go all fascist and psycho, he took his own course — before they’d mastered timonium, fractins, etc. so, he’s been playing catch up.

  9. Ed8r

    @Skip: Maybe he was originally a sherieka.

    Now *that*s a bold and interesting idea—and why not? To extrapolate further: Uncle would have to be one of the (singular) entities that joined into a single mind/power, becoming the (plural) Iloheen. Perhaps a rebel entity who believed that each “manufactured” or “cloned” creation—or at least the “human” or humanoid ones*—had the right to its own individual agency and autonomy. That would fit with his (apparent) mission, as seen in Crystal Soldier.

    *I added the idea of “human” because we have had no thoughts about, nor interactions with, the entities formed by the dominants with their submissive zaliata or tumzaliat as far as I know.

  10. skip

    Yes, Ed8r, It is a fun idea, anyway! Little is known of the sherieka / Iloheen, and little is known of Uncle. But Jela reflects about the shereika in chapter 1, crystal soldier:

    Sheriekas . They’d been human once, at least as human as he was—and even if his genes had been selected and cultivated and arranged, he was arguably as human as anyone who didn’t bear a Batch tattoo on both arms—

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