In which Laughing Cat confers with Carresens.
There are a lot of names in this chapter familiar from the Jethri books, although a large part of that is retroactive, since the Carresens family (and the Denobli family, who were a separate group back then) only appear in Trade Secret, which was written after this.
One name that isn’t retroactively familiar – though I didn’t recognise it myself the first time I read this novel, because I’m terrible with names when I’m not taking careful notes – is that of the thinker Arin, mentioned by Pilot Denobli, who was Jethri’s father Arin Gobelyn. And as such it’s probably not entirely a coincidence that the ship Theo flew for the Uncle bears his name, since the Uncle was Arin’s … let’s say “brother”, with the understanding that the Uncle’s family tree is kind of complicated.
(And the bit about Bechimo being well-suited to enact Arin’s ideas brings us back around to the idea of Bechimo having been created in Jethri’s time, only to founder once again on the fact that the numbers simply don’t add up.)
Pilot Denobli’s hair reminds me of two things. The hair itself brings to mind the elaborate spacer hairstyles mentioned in Trade Secret, which makes sense considering that Pilot Denobli is descended from the same spacer culture. The way he’s always fiddling with it makes me wonder about Theo’s first meeting with the Uncle, when he kept fiddling with his hair.
While we’re elaborating tenuous links between the Carresens and the Uncle, I’ve noticed something about their ship named OchoBalrog. The “Balrog” half has an obvious connection to the ship of that name owned by the Denobli family in Trade Secret, but we’ve seen the name Ocho once before in an entirely different context: it was the name of one of Dulsey’s siblings, way back in Crystal Soldier.