Private Meeting Room
In which Dyoli and Mar Tyn consider what’s to do.
Two thirds of the way into the book, and I still don’t know who the people on the cover are, but I’m beginning to consider the possibility that it might be Dyoli and Mar Tyn.
This chapter brings a clarification of Mar Tyn’s attitude: he is not unaware of Dyoli’s regard for him, nor does he doubt that given the choice she would want them to stick together; it is only that he doubts the universe will allow her the choice. (Which suggests that there were things he avoided saying to Shan, because he considered that saying them would not help and might lead to trouble.)
The impression I’m getting is that Dyoli’s other talent is one that goes beyond being able to see futures that might happen, or even to see which possible future will happen, into allowing her to choose which future happens. If so, that’s a pretty big power for a couple of people with apparently less-than-dramliz talents; the last time we saw someone pull it off, it was Rool Tiazan and his lady. (Perhaps, like that thing Moonhawk was talking about, it’s something that can only be achieved successfully by two working as one.)
I was expecting that Dyoli and Mar Tyn would end up coming along to the Redlands, but I wasn’t expecting them to know about it and be aiming for it deliberately. I suppose their knowledge must come via the Department’s interest in the Redlands’ talents; the timeline doesn’t work for them to have been among the Reavers, but perhaps they went with whatever earlier and more inconspicuous expedition discovered that the Redlands had something worth sending Reavers after.
I’m not clear whether Dyoli already knows, when she says that Dutiful Passage will take them to Civilization, that the ship is already headed that direction. Shan wouldn’t have told her where the ship’s headed after Volmer, because he has no reason to share his plans with someone from Ixin who’s leaving at Volmer anyway, but she might have seen it once her talent fired up. I hope so; that means that her plan only encompasses persuading Shan and Priscilla to take them along instead of handing them off to Ixin and going without them. If she doesn’t already know Shan’s intentions, the implication is that she’s willing and believes herself able to overrule the captain and the trader and make them go somewhere far out of their way.
(But here’s a disconcerting thought for free and gratis: Suppose that Dyoli didn’t know Shan was planning to visit the Redlands, because he wasn’t: when Dutiful Passage stopped to drop off its crew at Pommier it was headed somewhere else entirely. Suppose that Shan is wrong about the existence of dramliz abilities that can affect events retroactively, and that the only reason Shan and Padi have spent the last few weeks planning an approach to the Redlands is that Dyoli decided, here and now, that it would be useful for that to be the case…)