Tag Archives: Dil Nem Tiazan

Alliance of Equals – Chapter 34


In which yos’Galan does what needs to be done.

Noting that this chapter is all about Langlast, with nothing about Tolly and Admiral Bunter, I wonder if next chapter is going to be the inverse, and leave us waiting to find out what became of Padi.

I don’t quite understand what Padi’s disappearance signifies, but I don’t for a moment believe that she’s dead.

(I wonder where Lute has got to…)

Alliance of Equals – Chapter 32

The Garden of Gems

In which there are attacks from multiple sides.

It’s still not clear whether this is one set of co-ordinated attacks, or separate attacks in space and on land that happen to coincide. Once Tarona Rusk declared herself an agent of the Department, and the people seeking Padi likewise, I was prepared to conclude that the attack on the Passage was also the work of the Department; after all, as we’ve been reminded, attacks under cover of rightful customs activity are a thing they’ve done before. But then there’s Priscilla’s Seeing that one or more of the attacks is motivated by “some local chief’s bid for celebrity” – presumably Plishet. Perhaps Plishet is working with the Department because they’ve persuaded him they can give him something he wants?

I’m pretty sure this is the first time we’ve heard of a dramliz working for the Department voluntarily. It’s a fairly horrifying prospect.

The implication that Shan could have been a full dramliz if he had wanted to be is interesting, both in connection with the unfolding pattern of Lute’s lives and in light of his statement to Padi that it’s not possible to choose not to be dramliz.

Alliance of Equals – Chapter 31

Admiral Bunter

In which the bombshell is dropped.

I’ve been going back and forth on the cover illustration: at first I assumed it depicted Dutiful Passage, more or less because that was the only ship I knew would be in the novel, then later I thought perhaps it was Admiral Bunter. Now it looks like I was right the first time.

When Shan and Higgs went out, leaving Padi behind at the hotel, my first thought was that they’d been lured away so that someone could attack Padi. Then the attack on the Passage happened, and now I think it’s that Padi’s going to get wind of that and have to deal with it without Shan around to offer guidance.

It could still be that Shan was deliberately lured away. (In-story, I mean. It’s pretty obvious that it was deliberate on the part of the authors.) Perhaps it’s a two pronged attack. Perhaps it’s coincidentally an attack from Plishet with no connection to the attack on Priscilla. On the other hand, perhaps it’s just that Shan found conversation with Master Rusk congenial and lost track of time.

(Perhaps it’s good news that keeps him – it suddenly struck me as I was writing this that maybe she has news to impart of Lomar Fasholt. Although I don’t really have anything to back that up with beyond the flimsy observations that she’s female and it would be nice to have news of Lomar by the end of the book.)

Alliance of Equals – Chapter 26

The Torridon Hotel

In which there is conversation after dinner.

I don’t know if it’s significant that Shan describes the Liaden tongue as “the language of home” when speaking to the jeweller, after all the reminders there have been that the children of Korval need to stop thinking of Liad as home. Probably it’s just that that’s a conventional phrase and the situation is not appropriate for a more precise description.

I also don’t know if it’s significant that we’re getting a reminder now of Master Moonel, who appeared in Local Custom. That was back when Shan was a small boy, and Moonel was already the most respected jeweller on Liad, so it is not a surprise to learn now that he has since died. (Shan mentions that his shop stands empty; I wonder if that’s a sign that it happened recently, or perhaps that he was so respected nobody wishes to try taking his place.)

Possibly it is the death that matters — it makes two scenes in a row where the subject of death has come up in proximity with Padi, which helps things remain ominous even as her conversation with her father seems to be going well.

Alliance of Equals – Chapter 14

Vivulonj Prosperu

In which there is a recruiting of copilots and seconds.

The first mate is another Tiazan, this time not one we’ve met before. I think she may well be right about a bit of real flight being what Padi needs to sharpen her piloting; I also think that, the situation being what it is and the rules of drama being what they are, any actual attempt at flying away from the ship is likely to result in More Plot.

The Master Trader, meanwhile, seems to have decided that Padi also needs some real flight to sharpen her trading. I wonder if that’s a consequence of what happened at Chessel’s World, somehow, or if it was something he’d have started her on anyway at this point in her apprenticeship.

Alliance of Equals – Chapter 10

Dutiful Passage

In which Shan has an unanticipated meeting, and Stew still awaits an anticipated arrival.

Definitely ramping up to having Moonhawk and Lute take an active hand in the story. As yet, I don’t have any ideas about why. Presumably it’s not going to be just because a bunch of people have decided to take an unfriendly interest in Shan’s ship.

I like the grace note about the stream at Trealla Fantrol.

I don’t blame Stew for calling in his own expert when things got suddenly worse, but I wonder where his expert is from, and I’m inclined to suspect that having two experts on the case is not going to make things easier.

Alliance of Equals – Chapter 9

Vivulonj Prosperu

In which patience is a virtue.

Interesting. The scene with Daav is Interlude 9 from Dragon in Exile, only from Daav’s point of view instead of the Uncle’s. Which means this present is after Dragon in Exile‘s main plot line (i.e. the part that had Tolly and Haz in) but contemporaneous with the interlude/subplot. Well, it’s not as if it would be the first Liaden book where the various plot lines travelled at different speeds. The other interesting thing about it is that the empty chamber Daav finds himself in, and gets up to explore, is not real — or, let us say, no more real than the plain he recalls having been on earlier. In the Uncle’s viewpoint, he’s lying in the rebirthing unit the whole time with his eyes closed.

I’m getting really worried about Padi now. If she’d gone ahead with the plan to attack the guard she’d have been in a whole heap more trouble without having achieved any benefit — had she even got as far as thinking about what she planned to do after she’d killed him? (Failure to consider longer-term consequences seems to be a thing with her when she’s upset. Probably an effect of what she did to lock her fears away: if you don’t consider the consequences you don’t need to be frightened of what they might be. But you might also easily do something that solves an immediate problem by causing much worse problems later.)

Alliance of Equals – Chapter 8

Chessel’s World

In which the authorities act against an ongoing criminal enterprise.

Okay, so it’s “The trade goes wrong, launching more plot”, then. I didn’t expect it to go wrong this way, though in retrospect perhaps I should have.

Did the portmaster’s office know, when they invited Shan to a reception later in the day, that he was involved in an ongoing criminal enterprise? As Shan says, the specification that he should come alone isn’t necessarily sinister.

Shan’s reflection on the reception he received in Dayan port keeps another of the story’s balls in the air — Dayan port being where Lomar Fasholt used to live and trade. (And it occurs to me for the first time that it may not be coincidence that the planet Dayan and Sintia’s port city of Dyan have such similar names.)

I like how we have Padi trying to figure out why Shan chose to offer the goods he did, followed later by Shan reflecting on why he did.

We now have the third mate’s name: Dil Nem Tiazan. This is a name we’ve encountered before; he was one of the relatives to whom Miri was introduced at her first dinner under Erob’s roof.

Alliance of Equals – Chapter 6

Dutiful Passage
Andiree Approach

In which there may be trouble ahead.

We get quite a few new names in this chapters. There are the characters who have not been specifically referenced before, such as the crew of Pale Wing, and also characters who have been mentioned before but named, such as Dutiful Passage‘s third mate and the woman whose actions resulted in Hazenthull being brought along by Tocohl and Tolly.

Tocohl has a bit of a new name, too: this is the first time her surname has been mentioned. I wonder if it signifies anything, the way her forename does. (I wonder if it’s actually her surname, or just part of her cover?)

The third mate has the surname Tiazan, which is, as Padi recently reminded us, the name of Miri’s Liaden relatives. I did briefly entertain the amusing notion that Miri had for some reason joined the crew for this voyage, incognito, and that Shan’s comment about the third mate being “a bit stiff in the honor” was a joke. But of course we know that Miri is still back on Surebleak.

Alliance of Equals – Chapter 1

Dutiful Passage

In which yos’Galan has reason to contemplate the future.

It looks like this is going to be Padi’s book for dealing with the aftermath of Runig’s Rock, the way Necessity’s Child was Syl Vor’s.

Over on Shan’s side of the chapter, we have reminders of Shan’s encounter with Lute, and of Lomar Fasholt and the disturbances in the political structures of those who follow the Goddess. I’m hoping that’s a sign that there’ll be more Lute and Moonhawk in this book.

Pale Wing is not a ship name we’ve encountered before; from context, it’s clearly a Korval ship, and probably one of yos’Galan’s trading fleet. The ship that Tor An yos’Galan brought away from the death of the Ringstars was named Light Wing; perhaps this ship was named after that one, the way yos’Galan’s flagship is named after Quick Passage.

(It’s not strictly part of the chapter, but I couldn’t help noticing that the Acknowledgments feature a thank-you to Dr Linebarger, otherwise known as the SF author Cordwainer Smith. I look forward to finding out why that’s there.)