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From: Spectacled Bear <spectacled.bear@pobox.com>
Subject: Re: (whorl) Divine Silk and Pas (spoilers)
Date: Thu, 08 Feb 2001 12:51:04 +0000

At 16:01 2001-02-07 -0800, Jonathan Dale wrote:
>Having just finished RTTW and being new to this list, the following
>questions may already have been answered in the current yet-to-be-published
>digest! Apologies, if so.
>I was quite astounded by the end of RTTW; not so much the question of
>identity regarding Horn and Silk, but more the chronology of what happens
>when; Wolfe manages to masterfully obscure the precise ordering of events
>until the very end (I managed to get hints by seeing when Horn/Silk
>possessed the azoth).
>4. Is the nature of the azoth revealed anywhere but when Horn/Silk cuts the
>boat in two in RTTW? What is the speculation on this - that it is some kind
>of shaped antimatter beam? Also, what's the relationship to the black blade
>that the Neighbour chooses for Horn when he has to clear the sewer - is it
>some strange precursor to the fact that he will one day get the azoth?

A literary echo, I think. The only hint as to how the azoth works
is given when we first see it in _Nightside_, which talks about
reality splitting in two. The fuligin cloaks of the torturers are
compared to the colour of the blade in RttW, which does make it
sound more like a space-time phenomenon than a material thing.
It can be deflected a little by good steel, though, and it doesn't
reach indefinitely. Azoths wouldn't have been allowed on the Whorl
if they were likely to puncture it!

>5. Given the nature of the inhumi/human symbiosis secret, I was unclear on
>the exact specifics of how children were created; in one part of RTTW, the
>process of inhumi mating is clearly explained and somewhere in IGJ Fava
>explains about breaking out of the egg, etc., but I was unclear from where
>the mind was drawn. Is it that a primal inhumi takes on the mind from the
>first victim (which would explain Krait and Sinew) or is it more related to
>who the parents were?

The inhuma drinks blood, develops an egg with a supply enclosed,
and lays it in the water. The mind comes from the blood by the
chemical transfer of memories, as in the Book of the New Sun.

Spectacled Bear.

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