Tag Archives: Cantra yos’Phelium

Accepting the Lance – Chapter 36

Jelaza Kazone

In which the house is quiet.

A little demonstration of melant’i in Val Con’s conversation with the Healers: the person enquiring after the health of Anthora and Ren Zel is Lord yos’Phelium, their thodelm, but the person who would like to hear from Anthora when she has a moment is Val Con, her brother.

Neogenesis – Chapter 20 part V

In which Val Con and Miri gather information about their visitors.

This is the first mention I can recall of there now being two separate branches of the Scouts, but it doesn’t surprise me. I presume the schism is a consequence of the events surrounding Korval’s big play and subsequent exile, and the subsequent removal of a chunk of Liaden society to Surebleak. Liaden society as a whole was divided over how to view Korval’s actions, and although many Scouts had a sympathy for Korval it is not to be supposed that they were unanimous in their approval.
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Neogenesis – Chapter 20 part III

In which Val Con and Miri are not getting much sleep tonight.

Chapter 20 is shaping up to be a long chapter, to the point that I’m almost wondering if I need to subdivide the sections even further. Makes sense, though, since this is the chapter where a whole bunch of plot strands come together, not just from this book but from the four books preceding it.
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Neogenesis – Chapter 1 part I

Surebleak

In which we are reunited with various people already resident on Surebleak.

As the first chapter of the latest book of a series, this is mainly concerned with reminding the reader (or introducing them if they’re entering the series here) who everyone is and what they’ve been up to. It’s quite a long chapter, which might simply be that it’s a long series and there are a lot of characters to catch up on — but then, we don’t catch up on everybody, which suggests that these might be just the characters we need to know about to follow what’s going to happen in this novel. Which suggests there’s going to be a lot happening.

(Just how long a chapter the first chapter is depends whether the first part of the novel set on Surebleak, divided into three sections headed I, II & III, is one chapter or three. I wrote the paragraph above thinking of the whole thing as one chapter, but on reflection, I think I’m going to blog it as three chapters, if only so that the blog entries are a reasonable length.)
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The Gathering Edge – Chapter 22

Bechimo
Conference Circle

In which secrets are discussed.

I suspect we’ll be hearing about that other ship again some time. I did wonder if it might be the Uncle’s ship — it would be nicely ironic if Theo and her father were so close to each other without knowing it — but Bechimo would have recognised it, having seen it at close quarters in the past.
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The Gathering Edge – Chapter 2

Bechimo
Wyrd Space

In which the crew’s investigations find a whole lot of nothing.

I’m getting a bit confused about what Theo does or doesn’t know about Spiral Dance. There’s that one comment in this chapter where she indicates she knows Cantra had a ship of that name, but the rest of the time she seems more surprised than I’d expect by things which follow naturally from that, like the ship being of the old universe and the tree on the bridge being related to Korval’s Tree.

When Joyita remarks that Clan Korval is likely to have extensive records of a nature related to their problem, I wonder if it is, among other things, his own more subtle attempt to get Theo to heed Val Con’s request to return to Surebleak.

Alliance of Equals – Chapter 19

Vivulonj Prosperu

In which Aelliana returns.

Okay, so I wouldn’t have been left in the dark much longer about Tolly sharing a background with Inki. (This is far from the first time it’s happened that I’ve wondered about a thing in a blog entry and it’s been answered in the next chapter. That’s a good thing, I figure; it means the stories are well-paced and handing out information at an appropriate rate.)

Given the fact of their shared background, I think that that’s why Inki doesn’t want Haz telling Tolly about the confrontation with Stew. (I suspect the specific detail she doesn’t want Haz sharing is less the bit where she had to convince him with money, but the bit just before that where she frightened a man who wasn’t frightened by an Yxtrang. Or maybe it is the money thing, but because if she’s the legal owner of the ship the Admiral is installed in, that might give her leverage if she decides to run off with him.) She apparently hasn’t told Tolly she’s a Lyre graduate, which is an understandable precaution since he probably wouldn’t trust her if he knew — and so doesn’t help us tell whether she should be trusted, since she’d want to avoid that either way. She’s told Haz that they’re graduates of the same institute, but in a vague way that Haz will probably take to mean that they learned mentoring in the same place. And Tocohl knows Inki is a student of the Lyre Institute, but doesn’t know that Tolly is.

Meanwhile, over in the Daav-and-Aelliana plot line, we have a recap of the Tanjalyre Institute, for the benefit of readers who had forgotten or never knew about it. Among other things. (“could not help but overhear”, forsooth.) For the record, I’m very much enjoying the Daav-and-Aelliana side of the story, but I have less to say about it because its direction is less of a surprise.

Dragon in Exile – Chapter 37

Jelaza Kazone
Surebleak

In which Val Con sees his brother off.

I had wondered what became of Quick Passage. Now I wonder if the hidden control centre it’s become is the same one Miri used to oversee the Captain’s Emergency.

I like how Miri says “Now all we do is wait” as if that’s going to be easy for them.

Dragon in Exile – Chapter 10

Jelaza Kazone
Surebleak

In which Kareen and Kamele have an informative conversation.

I was a bit glib and a lot unfair when I suggested that Kareen might view Kamele as a performing dog. A better way to characterise the situation might be that Kamele has a genuine interest in and enthusiasm for learning the intricacies of the Liaden language, which makes it easier for one to forgive any stumbles since she’s clearly doing her best and it’s not her fault she’s not fully fluent yet. One might be less forgiving of a Terran who seemed to have made only the effort required to get by, for instance.

Also, they seem to actually like each other, a fact of which I took some convincing if only because Kareen has generally not made friends easily and it seemed unlikely that she would find it any easier with a non-Liaden.

(It’s interesting that, after Kamele was worried she might miss nuances if the conversation about the portrait was in Liaden, Kareen makes what must have been a deliberate choice to step out of Liaden into Terran to tell her about it, perhaps specifically to spare her that worry.)

Kareen’s description of the circumstances of Er Thom’s birth didn’t quite make sense to me at first: I wasn’t sure why it would be necessary for yos’Galan to produce a back-up delm of certain piloting ability when there was already Sae Zar. I think, though, that the problem with Sae Zar as a back-up delm is that he didn’t have the training for it; we know that training for a delm’s heir begins when he or she is very young, as happened for Daav (and Er Thom, as the designated back-up heir, got the same training). Also, Sae Zar was already designated as the heir to yos’Galan’s Master Trader, and to add Delm’s Heir to his pile would have been a disservice to yos’Galan, to be avoided unless no other solution was available.

Of the delms Kareen mentions in passing, we have heard of Jeni yos’Phelium, who helped establish the Scout Academy, and Theonna yos’Phelium, who was responsible for the Tactical Defense Pods. Edil yos’Phelium and Var Ond ter’Asten are new names. (ter’Asten is itself also a new name, unless it’s an alternate transliteration of “ter’Astin” – Jethri’s friend the scout was named Jan Rek ter’Astin.)

The implication of Kamele’s remark about Aelliana also being delm is, as I understand it, that her death wasn’t as simple as Daav failing his duty as delm to protect the vulnerable and husband the clan’s resources; Aelliana was also acting as delm, with a different assessment of who was most vulnerable and which resources the clan could least afford to lose, and no time for the two halves of the delm to reach a consensus.

Dragon Ship – Chapter 41

Bechimo

In which Theo encounters an old friend of the family.

A nice moment of cross-purpose: on hearing the message saying that Spiral Dance is out from Solcintra, Kara and Win Ton both think immediately of Solcintra City on Liad. After all, what other Solcintra is there?

I am not entirely sure what to make of Spiral Dance‘s reappearance. It could be considered as the end of something, with ship and passenger returning to yos’Phelium. But it could also be the forerunner of something: if they can make it through, what else might follow?

(The answer to that might depend on how, exactly, Spiral Dance found its way through. If it was only possible because of having a ssussdriad assisting the navigation, that’s probably an end of it, as there are no sussdriads left in the old universe. On the other hand, if the key event was Bechimo‘s haunted Struven Unit calling out in a way audible to old tech, that means the way is potentially still open – although even then, I suppose it’s unlikely that there’s going to be another ship with a haunted Struven Unit sitting in the wyrd space any time soon.)

It’s not clear how much time has passed for Spiral Dance since the Rising of Solcintra: that its passenger is now a tree and not just a seedling suggests it’s been a while, but the fact that it still fits in its planter shows that it’s been considerably less than the centuries it’s been for everyone else.