Trader’s Leap – Chapter 12


In which Tekelia makes the acquaintance of a Dragon.

It was nice of the authors not to keep us hanging too long on that question.

Actually, we get two questions settled, since we also get confirmation in passing that Colemeno is the third planet in the Redlands System. It’s also, apparently, home to both Civilization and the Haosa (and perhaps the only planet of the system which has its particular relationship to the ambient, which if true raises a new question).

The description of what’s done to Unteachable children whose families choose to try to keep them within Civilization is kind of horrifying, at least partly because I can think of real-world parallels.

There’s an obvious relation between the story of how Tekelia was pronounced Unteachable and the trouble Padi’s been having with her stylus. If Lina isn’t the right teacher for her, perhaps she’ll find a more suitable teacher among the Haosa.

That might not be sustainable in the long term, since Padi and Shan have both indicated that they don’t prefer a solution where she’s stuck on one planet to learn. But perhaps she’ll be able to make her own way once she’s got the basics, or alternatively the fact that she and Tekelia are meeting like this suggests a possiblity of distance learning.

And how did this meeting happen? Did Lady Selph know what was going to happen, or did she, like the Haosa, just open herself to possibility and see what showed up?

(Also, how does Tekelia know about norbears? Are there norbears on Colomeno, or are they known through meetings like this?)

We have a pronoun for Tekelia now: “their”.

6 thoughts on “Trader’s Leap – Chapter 12

  1. Paul A. Post author

    In context, it seems less like a determinative statement that Tekelia’s pronouns are “they/their” than that the authors finally reached a point where they couldn’t avoid using a pronoun, and “their” was the least inaccurate one available. In any case, it would seem to indicate that neither “he/his” nor “she/her” would do the job.

  2. Ed8r

    I noticed the their and wondered briefly whether the authors were merely yielding to the recent decisions (within the past 3 years) by some well-known American sources to allow its use as an epicene they. Or whether they were using it specifically as the even more recent non-binary singular pronoun. I didn’t stop to think it through, however.

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