Revelations of Thelvi [19 Hivvem 4261]
[OOC disclaimer: No, this isn't you. Or me. But you knew it was coming, didn't you? And of course Sythyry doesn't have a clue. Zie never starts out with one. -bb]
After that rather unpleasant digression with Mintiet, we posed The Question to all others who would answer.
Esory:"There's not much to say for me. I've never much cared for the kisses of other Rassimel. I spent two years with my tail curled into a spiral over a particular Cani woman, but she left me to get married in the usual Cani way at the end. Now, well, I've got a hopeless crush on someone -- not Rassimel, not Cani -- who's even less interested. Enough of that for now. Does that qualify me, Mintiet, arbiter of Traffness?"
Mintiet:"I suppose it does."
Thelvion:"My turn next?"
Me:"If you like." I braced myself for the effort of staying awake through Thelvion's life story.
Thelvion:"Well, I don't know how to ask this ... is it possible for a god to reincarnate someone in the wrong species?"
(A digression upon reincarnation: I don't know how it is in monster-lands. On the World Tree, reincarnation is simple enough: the spirit (which carries personality and volition, but not memory or tangible substance) of a prime, on death, returns to the prime's creator god. At such time as the creator god wishes, the god stuffs the spirit into a prime foetus, usually a month or so before birth, though with Sleeth I believe it's at the instant of birth so the mother doesn't get clawed from within. So, you will live again, but you won't remember anything of this life. I suppose it's better than not having any reincarnation at all, but it's not much better. The god might reincarnate you immediately, or might never get around to it, but for the short-lived species it usually happens within a few years. Zi Ri don't die very often and aren't born very often, so we might take a lot longer. Also creator gods make new spirits for some births -- only a fraction of living people are actually reincarnated. Spells to track previous lives are very hard, so research on this topic is only carried on in a few places, and I'm not very familiar with it.)
Jrakh:"No. The creator gods do not make mistakes."
Esory and I -- the ones who know the most theology -- howled in laughter.
Jrakh:"No, really, they don't, and Kvarse and Lenhirrik and Kaimiri don't either."
Which is absurd. Kvarse and Lenhirrik are notorious for making mistakes in their dealings with each other. Accanax made a serious mistake when he created the Khtsoyis. Maybe Kaimiri hasn't made any mistakes, by virtue of endless foresight -- time gods can do that sort of thing if anyone can -- but the others are frequently squeaking idiots. The sort of squeaking idiots who can make a universe, but that doesn't stop the squeaking or the idiocy.
Various other transaffectionates offered various other ignorant opinions on the topic of gods putting spirits in the wrong species of body. Finally Esory shut them all up with Perfect Logic.
Esory:"Since, say, Mircannis is the only god to work with Rassimel spirits, and she only works with Rassimel babies, it wouldn't be a simple clerical error for a Rassimel spirit to get shoved into a Sleeth body, say. It would take both Mircannis and Gnarn making a mistake -- or, more likely, doing it on purpose."
Thelvion:"Couldn't Gnarn snag a Rassimel spirit at the moment of death, thinking it was a Sleeth one?"
Esory:"Well, the spirits drift to the creator gods, rather than getting snagged -- that's why Spirit Reunion spells work the way they do, for one. And even if a Rassimel spirit ended up with Gnarn, Mircannis would ordinarily know about it and, presumably, ask for it back. Not a guarantee, I suppose, but not a simple mistake."
Thelvion looked crushed.
Me:"You suspect that your own spirit was put in the wrong body?"
Thelvion:"It would explain a great deal."
Jrakh:"No. Absolutely not. You are not transaffectionate, you are not a Sleeth reincarnated as a Rassimel by mistake. You are simply a fool, and, additionally, a madman."
Thelvion sobbed. Tediously.
Jrakh assaulted him with a barrage of Imperial-grade denials and opinions.
Whiskey and Mintiet drew Jrakh aside and tried to calm her down. Esory and I drew Thelvion aside and tried to calm him down. Eventually, by judicious use of fig wine and salty appetizers, both teams were successful, and no more was said of this topic by the principals. Whiskey and I compared notes afterwards though.
- Thelvion suspects -- he is not convinced, but he suspects -- that he is a Herethroy man in a Rassimel body. He feels more of a kinship with Herethroy and the Herethroy village life than with anything Rassimel.
- He is, of course, in love with a Herethroy. (Just one, though, Rassimel style. Herethroy style would be two.)
- The actual wrongness of species might not be as simple as being a Herethroy spirit in a Rassimel body. That is, perhaps, a simple way of expressing a very complex concept. (But Thelvion did not elaborate on the concept.)
- If I made a Cloak of Another God talisman for him, he would be immensely grateful.
- If Thelvion is actually right somehow, then he's not traff, he's loving someone of his own true species.
- It is an insult to the heart of the Imperium -- and her own marriage -- if someone can be the wrong species. It would distort the balance between the four main species.
- Thelvion should be excluded from the club on the grounds of him being too disgusting and insane if he is wrong, or not traff if he is right.
- She's probably not coming back in any case.
- In Thelvion's favor: Herethroy, and Herethroy village life, are endlessly tedious. Thelvion is endlessly tedious.
- Not in Thelvion's favor: the Fallacy of the Consequent in particular.
- Can a sufficiently skilled wizard determine what prime species a spirit should go with? I don't know. I don't suppose it actually matters, unless Glikkonen comes to visit and feels like inspecting my friends. And I'd really rather not have zir so interested in my personal life.
- We think that Jrakh is so upset because she thinks Thelvion is arguing that:
- all transaffection comes from having the wrong sort of spirit, and thus
- her own peculiar marriage comes from having the wrong sort of spirit, and thus
- her symbolic function as Emperor of Dlesty is based on a divine mistake, which would in turn
- render her public performances of very private matters a twisted disgusting thing indeed, even, arguendo, if it isn't one already.
- I am amazed at how large a bowl of indirect doom I poured for myself when I called for this club. And that's just from the members.
- I have no idea what to do about Thelvion at this point.
- Or Jrakh.
- Or Whiskey.
- Or Mintiet.
- Fortunately my relationship with Esory is a wholly uncomplicated and entirely straightforward friendship with a nice flavor of mutual assistance and common sense, or I'd be enjoying an even larger bowl of doom.