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From: mark millman <millman@us.ncipher.com>
Subject: Re: (whorl) Crocagators
Date: Wed, 25 Apr 2001 17:30:19 

At 12:58 PM 25-04-01 -0700, Dan'l Danehy-Oakes wrote:

> The Kitchen Staff Wombat wrote:
>> My understanding is that the 
>> number of human attacks from
>> crocodilians is very low. They're 
>> much like wolves that way--
>> feared as human predators all 
>> out of proportion to the actual 
>> danger they present. Which isn't 
>> to say that they can't sometimes 
>> be very dangerous, indeed. 
> Which was pretty much my point. Assuming per argu-
> mentam the "Golden Rule" theory of the Secret, _and_ 
> that the human colonists somehow manage to imple-
> ment it, then the inhumi become "something we can live 
> with," either as benevolent sentients or as dangerous but 
> mindless giant leeches.
> In fact, there's some doubt in my mind as to how many 
> people are actually killed by the inhumi in the situation 
> which actually holds on Blue at the time of Horn's jour-
> ney -- I don't recall many examples of someone actually 
> dying from inhumi attacks [excepting the attack on the 
> wedding, as a very special special case]. Do the inhumi, 
> like wolves, bears, sharks, snakes, crocodilians... suffer 
> from exaggerated human fears as to the extent of the 
> danger they pose?
> I somewhat doubt it, on the grounds that the inhumi (at
> least in the form we know) are far smarter than wolves, 
> bears, etc., and able to "pass" as humans: a combination 
> that makes one inhumu potentially far more dangerous in 
> the long term than a good-sized pack of wolves. But the
> Bluvian scenes in SHORT simply don't seem to reflect a
> people in imminent danger of being wiped out by 
> predators.
> I dunno. There's _something_ weird missing here, what 
> it is ain't exactly clear...
> --Blattid

At the risk of being obvious, allow me to point out that, unlike the 
inhumi, wolves, bears, sharks, snakes, crocodilians, and the like do 
not preferentially target humans as their prey.  

Also, as I recall (and I'm afraid that I don't have the book here for 
reference, so we'll have to depend on my recollection), Fava had to 
be very careful not to kill Salica when she fed from the old woman.  
If Fava hadn't been living with the family at the time, she very likely 
would have been less careful.  (If anyone is likely to die from the 
inhumi's depredations, it would be the old, the very young, and the 
sick; curiously, though, even the baby Sinew was not killed when he 
was attacked.  I wonder whether this may be a clue; thank you for 
bringing it up, Dan'l.)  I do have to agree with Dan'l, though; the 
inhumi aren't going to kill off Blue's human population any time 


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