Tag Archives: Festevalya

Alliance of Equals – Chapter 3

Dutiful Passage

In which Padi has a lesson to learn.

I raise an eyebrow at Padi’s dismissal of things that serve no purpose other than looking pretty. Apart from the error she’s making of assuming that “I see no purpose to this” is the same as “There is no purpose to this”, it seems shortsighted for one who aspires to be a trader: even if a thing’s only value lies in looking pretty, it still has value that may be usefully leveraged or may cause problems if ignored. People value the things they value, for whatever reason.

(That said, being unreasonable isn’t all that unlikely for someone Padi’s age.)

I’m wondering if the Carresens Syndicate is going be part of the “alliance of equals” referred to in the title. When the family (and Pilot Janifer Carresens-DeNobli) was last mentioned, in Dragon in Exile, the delm summed them up by saying they were very like Korval. (I somehow doubt the Uncle is going to be part of it; has he ever recognised an equal?)

Dragon Ship – Chapter 20

Departing Tradedesk

In which there are pilots in peril.

I think it’s probably for the best that the Guild Office wasn’t open when Theo went to see about advertising for a captain for Theo. It might be a good way to find a captain for a normal ship, but Bechimo‘s kind of a special case and I’m not convinced there’d be a good chance of finding a good match without broadcasting just how special in more detail than would probably be wise.

That’s an interesting moment when Theo and Bechimo are butting heads over going to Eylot, and Joyita seems just as amused by the situation as Clarence does.

Dragon Ship – Chapter 19


In which there are many meetings.

…well, that seems a pretty clear statement that Bechimo was built in or shortly after Jethri’s time, with Arin’s ideas as guidance. There have been other people named Arin (there’s one in Crystal Dragon), and there might even have been another who was a noted thinker on subjects of interest to traders, but it’s not likely there was another who was all that and had a son who took a different path.

But we’re still stuck with the fact that the beginning of Ghost Ship states straight up that Bechimo has been awaiting a captain for over five hundred years – which is to say, since two hundred years before Jethri was born.

(On another, less contradictory, note, we have another hint to go with the one from “Intelligent Design” of a technological underpinning for psychic abilities in the Liaden Universe.)

Dragon Ship – Chapter 18


In which Laughing Cat confers with Carresens.

There are a lot of names in this chapter familiar from the Jethri books, although a large part of that is retroactive, since the Carresens family (and the Denobli family, who were a separate group back then) only appear in Trade Secret, which was written after this.

One name that isn’t retroactively familiar – though I didn’t recognise it myself the first time I read this novel, because I’m terrible with names when I’m not taking careful notes – is that of the thinker Arin, mentioned by Pilot Denobli, who was Jethri’s father Arin Gobelyn. And as such it’s probably not entirely a coincidence that the ship Theo flew for the Uncle bears his name, since the Uncle was Arin’s … let’s say “brother”, with the understanding that the Uncle’s family tree is kind of complicated.

(And the bit about Bechimo being well-suited to enact Arin’s ideas brings us back around to the idea of Bechimo having been created in Jethri’s time, only to founder once again on the fact that the numbers simply don’t add up.)

Pilot Denobli’s hair reminds me of two things. The hair itself brings to mind the elaborate spacer hairstyles mentioned in Trade Secret, which makes sense considering that Pilot Denobli is descended from the same spacer culture. The way he’s always fiddling with it makes me wonder about Theo’s first meeting with the Uncle, when he kept fiddling with his hair.

While we’re elaborating tenuous links between the Carresens and the Uncle, I’ve noticed something about their ship named OchoBalrog. The “Balrog” half has an obvious connection to the ship of that name owned by the Denobli family in Trade Secret, but we’ve seen the name Ocho once before in an entirely different context: it was the name of one of Dulsey’s siblings, way back in Crystal Soldier.