[LMB] FF: Chapter 11

Pat Mathews mathews55 at msn.com
Mon Sep 23 14:05:59 BST 2013



> From: tlambs1138 at charter.net
> To: lois-bujold at lists.herald.co.uk
> Date: Sun, 22 Sep 2013 19:16:43 -0700
> Subject: [LMB] FF: Chapter 11
> 
> A brief run through of Chapter 11, with commentary:
> 
>  
> 
> "Siggy, reminded, pointed his solderer at Ti. Silver, when approving this
> ploy, had kept her inner thoughts about it most secret. Going in with Ti
> unarmed, apparently under the quaddies' guns, covered him in case of later
> capture and legal prosecution. Equally, it disguised the possibility of
> making his ersatz kidnapping real, should he decide to bolt back to the side
> of his legged companions at the last moment. Wheels within wheels; did all
> leaders have to think on multiple levels? It made her head hurt."
> 
>  
> 
> --She's right. If leaders know what they're doing, yes, their heads will
> hurt. It's part of the job, as far as I'm concerned. 
> 
>  
> 
> "In fact, the effect of her action on everyone present, not just their
> captives, was most gratifying. Everyone moved faster. This could get
> addictive, Silver thought. No arguments, no complaints-" (shooting the
> solderer at the other pilot, showing the quaddie propensity to turn tools
> into weapons. Foreshadows the use of the riveter in DI, I should think). 
> 
>  
> 
> --"Power corrupts. Absolute power is pretty neat." Now she knows how it
> feels to be on the other side. 
> 
>  
> 
> "Was this the pleasure in power Van Atta felt, when everyone gave way before
> him? It was obvious what firing the weapon had done to the defiant pilot;
> what had it done to her? For every action, an equal and opposite reaction.
> This was a somatic truth, visceral knowledge ingrained in every quaddie from
> birth, clear and demonstrable in every motion."
> 
>  
> 
> --What makes Silver different is that she is *thinking* about what it is
> doing to her, rather than merely accepting and/or rejoicing in her first
> major use of power. 
> 
>  
> 
> "Any evil they could do, quaddies could do too. If they chose."
> 
>  
> 
> --Silver already understand that it's all about choices. 
> 
>  
> 
> "I wonder how all this is going to go," sighed Emma. "How it will turn out.
> Where we'll all be in seven months ..." 
> 
>  
> 
> Hardly a figure chosen at random, Claire realized. "Away from Rodeo, anyway.
> Or dead." 
> 
>  
> 
> --Claire also understand what is at stake. Both the quaddies' present and
> their future lie in their hands, now. 
> 
>  
> 
> "We'll still have to work, but it will be for ourselves. And our children." 
> 
>  
> 
> --And that makes all the difference.
> 
>  
> 
> And now a word from our villain:
> 
>  
> 
> "Bruce Van Atta pressed a finger to one side of his nose, squeezing the 
> 
> nostril shut, and sniffed mightily, then switched sides and repeated 
> 
> the procedure. Damn free fall and its lack of proper sinus drainage, 
> 
> among its other discomforts."
> 
>  
> 
> --For one, brief shining moment let all of us who are martyrs to sinus
> complaints sympathize with him. 
> 
>  
> 
> "Female wimp, he thought. A relief, that they had only a few weeks left to
> work together, and he didn't have to jolly her up any more." (cf Dr. Yei)
> 
>  
> 
> --All right, that was fast. Now we can go back to hating him, and um,
> looking forward to Dr. Yei's later job action. 
> 
>  
> 
> "Emergency, emergency, this is not a drill," Graf repeated. 
> 
>  
> 
> --And now the action begins. 
> 
>  
> 
> "A planned accident-could it be, could it possibly be . . . ? "
> 
>  
> 
> --Always ready to think the worst, our Bruce..
> 
>  
> 
> "There would have to be a sacrifice, for the sake of form, after the
> accident."
> 
>  
> 
> --Now we see why Van Atta is on Rodeo, and not at headquarters on Earth. His
> willingness to throw others under the bus at a moment's notice can't have
> escaped the notice of his superiors-who undoubtedly wonder if they are next.
> 
> 
>  
> 
> "Control, he told himself in a mortal fear of his imminent self-destruction.
> Control, stay in control-and get Graf later. Get him, get them all. ..."
> 
>  
> 
> --And there we are. Van Atta is down but not out-but what, precisely, can he
> actually do? 
> 
>  
> 
> Stay tuned for our next thrilling chapter!
> 
>  
Ah, yes, Van Atta, the demo model for the Incompetent Sociopath at the management meetings.
 		 	   		  


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