Letters Column for July 2006: Answering Questions

Posted on August 3, 2006 by Jenna

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(Did we ever learn how Meredith recovered from discorporation? Though hopefully it won’t come to that…)
— Ninjacrat

In 1986, a bit of Meredith coils away from the rest. It hides, shuddering, behind false walls of cognition that it forms around itself. It firewalls away the knowledge of itself and forms a body and becomes a her.

She says, “I am that which I have intended.”

This is the wrong answer to her question, and so she ceases to exist, but that is of little matter to her.

I am slightly curious as to how to interpret the phrase “the point of the history”
— cariset

I knew a man once who didn’t learn the lessons of history.

It found him, history did.

It came billowing out of the books, the wood, the walls.

He said, “I have rejected you that I may unfurl my wings; that I may exist in a context external to that which you have established. Humbly I greet you and humbly I ask you that you should let me go.”

But history is sharp

And history is cold

And history is not forgiving.

Thus we found him splayed upon the floor with great gashes on his back and blood around him in the shape of wings.

The bastard hadn’t left any evidence, of course.

We tried to shake history down. We told it that corroboration had confessed. We shone lights on it and we threatened it but the bastard just kept grinning and so we had to let it go.

Most of the people who knew him are dead now. Old age, sickness, fiends—

I don’t think it’ll stop until it takes them all.

But I just wanted to say WOW and thank you and keep up the good work.
— Taliskar

I cannot begin to express how much I like the presentation of Confucianism and Mr Kong.
— chaomancer

Thank you for your kind words. ^_^

Is Martin still a rebel against the natural order, or is he going to graduate to a place on the throne before Ink makes it to the top?
— rpuchalsky

Martin is an agent of the natural order.

So that’s where Ink was!

She always wins Hide and Seek.
— insanitykun

I think an optimized Hide and Seek robot might beat her, but all such robots are currently engaged in other searches.

…Kill God, indeed. It’s good to have goals and all that, but I’m staring to think Ink brings it on herself.
— Ninjacrat

I don’t think that’s ever really been in question. ^_^

Passing thought: How did they not overhear Martin and Sukaynah’s conversation?
— Ninjacrat

Tep tuned it out.

I thought it messed up the narrative flow to have Martin and Sukaynah saying a bunch of stuff during Tep’s intro. Possibly a mistake. ^_^

So either there’s some time distortion involved, or the Gibbelins are somehow (directly or indirectly) responsible for inspiring Damon Knight.
— Penultimate Minion

Not to mention Dunsany!

Like “Tep” being named pet backwards, to continue the dyslexic agnostic bit.
— rpuchalsky

Tep is the second sound in his name. There’s a preceding ‘ah’ that isn’t normally vocalized, but which serves to shape how it gets pronounced: the second, downward-falling syllable in a notionally longer and fairly cheerful sound.

I suspect that that means it’s actual origin comes from something more like ‘biddip’ or ‘buddup’ or even something like ‘haddip’ or ‘get up’ or ‘adapt’.

I wouldn’t want to commit to anything in a letters column, but I’d suggest that he was laying there dying and heard frog noises as a command to get back up. That seems a reasonably plausible start to a werewolf origin, particularly back in the 1800s. ^_^

I am normally too quiet and shy to comment, but I’m breaking the silence today because it’s my one-year Hitherby anniversary – I started reading a year ago. It was less than a month later that I found myself so obsessed that I began to be seriously worried that, thanks to Hitherby, the rest of the world had become oddly empty. But I got over that, and now all I have to express for this work is my profound admiration.
— Vierran

^_^ Welcome.

Best I can some up with for now is that Martin wishes the part of Sukaynah which is a beast such as he wishes the Monster to be to go forth and inflict transformative suffering, whereas the part of her that is still a girl is still in need of whatever imrpvoement can be wrought by being tied up under a tower on the edge of chaos.
— Atelos

That’s pretty close!

Martin is not 100% free of willful blindness. If he were, then there’d be even fewer questions he couldn’t answer. ^_^

So what’s the difference between the Warbish Lavelwods of this year and the Snavering Lavelwods of almost-to-the-day last year?
— Penultimate Minion

Snavering lavelwods are murderous mutant mini-squids. Albeit adorably fuzzy.

Sukaynah is not miniature and has not displayed fuzziness as of yet.

But it also somehow cheapens my feedback, reduces it to an integer. I suspect the author feels it less when I click the fourth star than when I say that I really liked this post. That it spoke to me. That I found Red Mary’s “How a man grows aggressive…” quote particularly insightful.

Thank you Rebecca. The world is a measurably brighter place because of you and your writing.
— Mithrandir

Thank you for your kind words!

Anyway, that’s all for this month.

I am currently intending an Audience post for later this month. I, um, see, posting issues ate part 2 and I have to reconstruct it either from memory or ab initio, and if that really irritates me then Saturday might be an Audience post. Otherwise it’ll be after this current 4-parter. ^_^

Thank you for reading, thank you for commenting, thank you for donating, thank you for making a mindful effort to see things clearly and to look on others with compassion*, and I’ll see you again next month!


  • If for some reason you can’t look on others with compassion then using X-ray vision is also acceptable.