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From: "Alice Turner" <pei047@attglobal.net>
Subject: (whorl) Neighbor + Inhumu + One?
Date: Tue, 22 Aug 2000 10:16:28 

Nick G:

> Drawing on a remark John Clute made a few days ago:
> are we sure of the fate of those inhumi who, however
> long ago, ingested Neighbor blood and thus became
> equal to the Neighbors in puissance? The inhumi who in
> Horn's time infest the City on Green clearly have a
> relation to them, but their qualities seem to derive
> from their human slaves, the "inhumans". Did the
> original "Neighborly inhumi" survive in some other
> guise? Specifically, are the Neighbors Horn encounters
> not perhaps inhumi themselves?

 I disagree with almost all the specifics that Pat. Rat puts forth with
regard to this series, but I agree with him that it is theologically
conceived. To me, it illustrates the ideas of the second-century heretic
Origen (who was consigned to hell on 15 counts of anathema by his fellow
Church Fathers) who believed that, as angels could sin and fall, demons
could repent and redeem themselves and begin to rise. Instead of a
static and everlasting heaven and hell, there would be a sort of
cyclical motion with, eventually, all things turning to God. (It's a
little more complex, but that's the general idea.) The system that Wolfe
has laid out here is fairly simple: the Neighbors or VPs stand in for
angels, the inhumi for demons or devils, and human beings are shown
being both noble and outrageously wicked and, especially, quarreling
incessantly with one another. The ingestion of blood (and the mysterious
"secret") do change the inhumi nature toward that of their
victims--what's more we see the naked yearning of all three of the young
inhumi to be "real" girls and boys, to aspire upward toward humanity
(this would be how Origen put it--humanity is the middle state beween
devil and angel).

So (sorry to be so longwinded), I think the answers to both your
questions is no, but with qualifications. I don't think there's going to
be any revelation about actual physical change--Harn is not an inhumu in
any way, IMO, nor are the Neighbors. But I do suspect there is going to
be something about partnership. Somebody in the last few days suggested
that the visit to Urth was triggered by Horn's working in tandem with
Rigoglio. I doubt it. I think an unhuma(u) must always be present for
Horn to swing this telekinetic trick (though it is true that the venue
derived from Rigoglio in this case). And the ability was contributed by
a Neighbor. Still, yours is a more intriguing notion of the "secret,"
than any of the Golden Rule platitudes offered so far!

> Do any others share my impression that Wolfe wishes us
> to equate the City of the Inhumi with Nessus? Are they
> congruent in being accursed?

Congruent, yes; he practically slams us over the head with it. Accursed,
hmmm, see above.


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