(urth) Short Sun notes: Remora

Andrew Mason andrew.mason53 at googlemail.com
Mon Oct 7 14:40:51 PDT 2013

Marc Aramini wrote:

The house might be a hus

 Who would the other man be on that reading?

Thomas Bitterman wrote:

> I had always considered this to be a pretty straightforward shot at
> Aristophanes's/Plato's myth about the origins of sexual orientation.

I like that. I was about to protest that the Neighbours are gendered (The
Neighbour Horn, Windcloud, and the one who gave human Horn the sword are
he's: the one who transfers his spirit to the Whorl is a she), but of
course so are Aristophanes' double beings; the myth isn't meant to explain
gender, just sexual desire or love.

Lee Berman wrote:

> What Windcloud says is: "In the Whorl, I made the acquaintance of *many* of
> your race.?" This would not seem to be the way one would describe
> electronically
> wandering around Mainframe or lurking in the tunnels. I think it implies
> Windcloud
> wandered around places like Viron, connecting with the regular sorts of
> Whorl residents
> we know best.

I take it Gerry meant they met the human staff of Mainframe. But of course,
since part of their purpose in being there  was to observe humanoid inhumi,
one would think they would also  have to be in the cities, where the inhumi
are. (I believe Marc thinks Quetzal's tree is a Neighbour: this may be
right, but a tree isn't well-placed to make the acquaintance of many
humans, so it's likely there are some in human form as well.)

> My interpretation is that humans are baser animals than Neigbhors and are
> thus more equipped
> to resist infection by Inhumi. SilkHorn beats Jahlee to death. Other
> groups bury the Inhumi
> alive etc.  Perhaps The Neighbors were unable to perpetrate such violent
> atrocities against their parasitic enemies and were forced to escape to
> another plane of existence.  They were unable to
> deal with the Inhumi here in the material world, as humans are at least
> partially able to do.

Well, the inhumi believe that humans could defeat them by being more noble
- that is the point of the 'Secret'. And when the Rajan says that this is
'a weapon too heavy for our hands', he also says that the Neighbours knew
of it but were unable to use it - which suggests to me that they do hope
humans will be able to wield it.

> >Of Windcloud, however, we do know that he had previously lived on Blue,
> >since he reveals that he was the original occupant of Inclito's house - he
> >says that the Rajan came to stay in his house, being invited by a man who
> >was living there (and we are indeed told that the core of Inclito's house
> >was an old Neighbour structure).
> Good point. But is there any indication that Neighbors have a lifespan?
>  If he is more or less
> immortal, couldn't Windcloud have originally lived in Inclito's place then
> gone to Green and
> become entwined with the parasitic Inhumi?

That's certainly possible. But I'm uncertain of the idea of Neighbours
becoming like inhumi. Even if we take the 'entwining' image to refer to the
relation of Neighbours and inhumi, it doesn't force us to think that; a
vine and the tree it entwines remain separate entities. And in general
inhumi become like their victims  rather than the other way round.
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