Accepting the Lance – Chapter 60

Six of Us
Jenarian Station

In which Rys makes a gamble.

I suppose it was too much to hope that the official procedure for disbanding the Department merely meant calling the whole thing off and letting everyone go home.

This also suggests that I read the end of the prologue backwards: it wasn’t the Commander conditioning that headed off the thought about disbanding the Department; it was the Commander who wanted the Department disbanded, and one of Caz Dor’s colleagues who diverted the thought to buy time until the Department could be taken apart non-lethally.

I’m not sure I follow the Commander’s explanation of how disbanding the Department is an advantage to the Department, unless “disbanding” is a euphemism for “blowing up with great big explosives while the enemy is close by”. Though the bit about allowing their power to meld with the intent of the universe reminds me of the stuff that’s been said in the other plot strand about how the old universe was suffused with the intent of the Enemy; perhaps in the old universe, where the Commander would have been commanding just one force in service of that pervading intent, there was some way that disbanding the force served to strengthen the cause they ultimately served. If so, it’s unlikely to work here now that the Department is the last remnant and the old universe has been sealed off, but perhaps Claidyne’s copy of the Commander doesn’t know about that yet.

…I wonder if the official Commander’s increasing instability has something to do with she is feeling the effects of being sealed off from the old universe.

2 thoughts on “Accepting the Lance – Chapter 60

  1. Ed8r

    Trust Paul to have caught on to something that only occurred to me last night during my reread in preparation for today’s post—maybe the 10th time I’ve read this chapter?

    I had not even considered the actual possibility that this understanding of what would happen if the department were “disbanded” were anything more than a lie implanted by whatever is in the Transfer Point system. But this time, I found myself accepting it as a true piece of information, leading me to question, however, where the example she cites actually took place. We don’t know whether Raqi Sorn is in this universe or the Old one, do we? And I had not thought of the possible effects on the Commander (either one of them) of the sealing off—or even death (according to some of the Assembled)—of the Old Universe.

  2. Paul A. Post author

    This is the only place that Raqi Sorn is mentioned. I assume it was in the old universe, but that might be me working backward from the thought about how disbanding might have been more effective in the old universe.

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