In which Admiral Bunter and Tolly discuss necessary action and acceptable risk.
A nice piece of narrative judo, here. By having Tolly explain things to Admiral Bunter, the reader is informed of matters that will be relevant to the ongoing adventures of Inkirani and Tocohl, who couldn’t have handled that bit of exposition themselves without it coming down to them telling each other things they already know. As a bonus, there’s the little touch of irony that Tolly and the Admiral consider going to the place where they would have met again with their former companions, and then decide not to.
I also like the bit where Tolly is telling Admiral Bunter about the rumour regarding the Carresens-Denobli long-looper. He says that there is this rumour; he doesn’t say what he knows from his own experience of its accuracy. Of course that’s something he doesn’t need to be telling Admiral Bunter at this point in their relationship; all the Admiral needs to know is that there may be other people like him out there.