Mother of Syrinx. Captain of Iasius, a voidhawk that spawns Syrinx and Oenone. As a voidhawk Captain, she and her ship have shared every thought and emotion (through affinity) for 108 years. Athene has had three husbands and numerous children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Almost all her adult off-spring are involved in spaceflight. But, they come home when not in space, making Athene’s house an active port-of-call unto itself. Athene describes the Edenist psyche: “Our empathy means we never hide what we feel...the balance is the penalty of being human: the danger of allowing yourself to feel. For this we walk a narrow path...On one side we have the descent into animalism, on the other a godhead delusion. Both are pulling at us, both tempting. But without these forces tugging at your psyche, stirring it into conflict, you can never love. They awaken us, you see, these warring sides, they arouse our passion.”
Athene’s husband and Syrinx’s father. Died at age 168. Becomes part of the Romulus habitat personality. Sinon explains the Edenist perspective on Adamists: “Adamists are incomplete. We know that we will continue after the body dies; in some way, some fraction of us will linger for hundreds of mellennia....consider the disadvantage under which the ordinary Adamist labours. The mythical kingdom, that is all their heaven can ever be, beyond even knowing. In the end, such belief is very hard for poor sinful mortals to retain. Our afterlife, however, is tangible, real. For us it is not a question of faith, we have fact.”
Much to Athene’s displeasure, he downloads a portion of his personality out of the neural strata into one of the half million serjeants being rapidly assembled for the operation against the possessed on Mortonridge. The serjeants themselves are monstrous looking things since their organs are “force-cloned” and then “stitched” together. It normally takes 15 months to create a serjeant, but those for the operation are being thrown together in a few weeks. Crude but fully functional.
The Hundred Families????
The Saldana Dynasty -
An Adamist family line turned Edenist. Saldana's have an average life expectancy of about 200 years, superior physique and intelligence. They are born leaders, most of them Kuluian aristocrats.
Wing-Tsit Chong -
The founder of Edenism. The first human to transfer memories into a habitat neural stratum. Denounced and excommunicated by the major religions of Earth in 2090 as an attempt to avoid divine judgment.
Ruth Hilton -
Member of Lalonde Group Seven. The village "schoolmarm". A qualified didactic assessor equipped with a laser imprinter that allows her to literally teach educational courses on any given subject. She is in Aberdale as the reality dysfunction begins. She stands up to Jackson Gael after he is possessed. Allowing Father Horst and her daughter, Jay to escape from the flames and terror of the dysfunction.
Jay Hilton -
Ruth Hilton's daughter. A confident and independent child of 12. She gets most of her confidence from a high degree of trust in her mother. Upon her escape with Father Horst and several of the children from Aberdale when the reality dysfunction emerges, she becomes someone the other children refuges from Aberdale look up to as a leader. She is the oldest and strongest of them and Father Horst relies heavily on her assistance in a variety of tasks. She escapes with the other children in Reza Malin’s valiant rescue mission.
She adjusts well to life on Tranquillity and quickly befriends Haile, the young Kiint. The two often play in the water and along the beach. They develop a particular fondness for making castles and other shapes out of sand. One day Jay suggests to Haile that they attempt to make a Tyrathca tower just to do something different. Kelly Tirrel had shown her their appearance. She wishes to they could make their Sleeping God alter, but doubts it can be made out of sand.
Haile, being a naturally inquisitive Kiint, inquires about the Sleeping God. Jay tries to explain that it was an altar in the Tyrathca’s religion. Haile asks if it is similar to Christianity, since that is the only religion of which the youngster has knowledge. Jay and Haile get into a rather confusing discussion about religion in general, Haile cannot understand how there can be more than one God. The Kiint goes off to query her parents about the nature of religion and about the Tyrathca’s Sleeping God particularly.
Syrinx’s brother. Captain of the voidhawk Graeae. It was he who persuaded his sister to sign on for a seven-year tour of duty in the Confederation Navy only three years after Syrinx had become the full-fledged captain of Oenone. Eventually, he and she were selected to service in the CNIS. Killed in an antimatter explosion while docking with the Dymasio. The force of the explosion was so violent that very little of Thetis’ neural stratum could be transferred as is the Edenist custom upon death. Oenone captured what it could in its neural cells, but the retrieval was fractured and scrambled. Syrinx returns the remains to the Romulus personality habitat. The personality is able to take the fragments and weave them into some sort of cohesion to form a child of 10, but Thetis, as an adult and as a whole, no longer exists. His psychic remains will fade rapidly into the collective nature the personality. Syrinx is deeply troubled by this spiritual fragmentation. It is not often that an Edenist passes away so incomplete. Hamilton writes of her thoughts: “Emerging from the jumble of doubt and misery was the tenuous wish that Adamists were right after all, and there was such a thing as God, and an afterlife, and souls. That way Thetis wouldn’t be lost. Not for ever. It was such a tiny sliver of hope. Oenone’s thoughts rubbed against hers, soothing and sympathetic. If there is a God, and if somewhere my brother’s soul is intact, please look after him. He will be so alone.”
Oenone’s fusion-generator specialist. Age 125. Syrinx’s lover (she being exactly 100 years younger than he.) His mature assists Syrinx in learning to be patient with the aggravating ways of Adamists. After Syrinx is rescued from being tortured, he convinces Oenone that Jupiter is the best destination for her. There, he consults with Eden, the original Edenist habitat. Eden agrees that the outbreak of possession among the Adamists is worthy of a general Consensus.
Jackson Gael -
An Ivet and Dexter Quinn’s first “follower.” Initially, a companion on several acts of crime while in Lalonde. One of the first humans to be possessed by the reality dysfunction.
Loren Skibbow -
Gerald's wife, horribly murdered during the inital emergence of the reality dysfunction in Aberdale. She later returns from the beyond to possess Pou Mok. She then rescues Gerald from his therapists and helps him to escape Guyana to Valisk in an attempt to rescue their daughter Marie from possession by placing her into zero-tau. She attempts to explain the beyond to Gerald, but her understanding falters. We learn from her that, while there aren’t “separate places” in the beyond, it is somehow possible to leave it. Plus, she adds surprisingly, “The beyond isn’t necessarily the torment everyone is making it out to be.” She promises Gerald that she will meet him somehow when he arrives at Valisk. After assisting her husband in negotiating a birth on the starship Quadin, she finds herself trapped by Royal marines. After she unleashes a violent white fireball at them, she opens the airlock and is sucked into space where Pou Mok’s body glows for a moment before exploding.
Powel Manani -
Group Seven’s settlement supervisor. His job is to stay with the group for some 18 months and assist them in establishing themselves safely and productively in the jungle. He is also charged with keeping order in the settlement, particularly where the Ivets are concerned. He absolutely hates them and rules them with an iron will. Assisting him in this endeavor is Vorix, a sayce with which he is affinity bonded, giving superior powers of intuition and perception into the natural environment in general and human nature particularly. He controls the sayce through neuron symbionts and uses him for hunting and scouting purposes in addition to assisting with keeping a tight rein on the Ivets. Vorix is later killed by Lawrence Dillon as the animal pursues the Ivet into the jungle during the general purge of Ivets by the settlers. Ultimately, Manani is sacrificed as part of a ritual by Quinn Dexter. The reality dysfunction begins at this point.
Colin Rexrew -
Governor of Lalonde. Life-long corporate man of Miconia Industrial, a corporation with 10% stake in the LDC (third largest investor). After a ten year stint on Lalonde, he will be in line for membership in the Miconia board. He has eight years left to serve and is frustrated with many aspects of the development of the planet. Kenyon, an asteroid intended to be exploited for its rich mineral deposits when Lalonde completes stage one development, has arrived several decades too early, by his reckoning. While it looks good to the LDC investors to show that Kenyon is en route, now that the asteroid has arrived it will inevitability become a liability as nothing can be done with it. Lalonde is developing too slowly, with tremendous drain on financial resources being placed by colonization efforts that are occurring too rapidly to allow for adequate infrastructure upkeep. Upon learning that the local authorities have little faith in their ability to maintain control of Durringham, he orders that a band of mercenaries be raised. An envoy is sent to Tranquillity, the nearest port affording the possibility of raising mercenaries is sufficient numbers.
An Ivet who becomes totally devoted to Quinn and his Satanic cult, its sexual rituals, and especially its covert plans to escape from Aberdale. Ultimately, of course, Quinn wants to return to earth and seek revenge upon Benneth. Along with Jackson Gael, Lawrence is completely under Quinn’s control, a tool to be used in whatever plans he devises. Dillon is killed during the round up of Ivets by the citizens of Aberdale following the murder of Carter McBride. But, he returns from the beyond on Norfolk to once again serve as Quinn's disciple. This time his body is stronger and he vows that things will be as they were on Lalonde "only better." He bows at Quinn's feet proclaiming that "the whole universe will bow before you, Quinn."
Gwyn Lawes -
An Aberdale citizen who is ambushed by the Ivets on a routine hunt for game in the jungle. His Jovian credit disk is transferred to Quinn. He is then mauled to death by a sayce that the Ivets had captured alive earlier. It is the perfect crime. Quinn gets the fuseodollars for future use in his plan escape Aberdale and the sayce rips Gwyn to shreds, leaving the appearance of another unfortunate victim of the jungle’s wild animals. No one suspects otherwise.
Rai Molvi (Shaun Wallace)-
Aberdale’s leading official, though no real government has been set-up as yet. He is proud of the accomplishments of the citizens under his leadership of the loosely formed council. He hopes to become mayor of the settlement when it is sufficiently developed. Along with Father Horst, he is convinced by Quinn to give the Ivets better treatment and more freedom. It seems to be working from his perspective. Aberdale is fast becoming a model for stage one development.
When the reality dysfunction breaks out however, he is possessed by Shaun Wallace, a Northern Irishman from the 1920’s. He is captured by Reza Malin’s scout team. He describes “the beyond” from where the possessed come as not being a place (like Hell, for example). He is uncertain as to how the possession process began. “The way was opened for us,” Shaun Wallace says. “Something came through from this side, right here on this sodden hot planet. I don’t know what the creature was. Nothing Earthly, though. After that, there was no stopping us.” He tells the team that the mysterious red cloud that is slowly covering Lalonde is created by the possessed collectively because they fear the night sky. It reminds them too much of the beyond, so they cover it up. He reveals that the ultimately plan of the possessed is to completely remove Lalonde from the Universe “to a place of our own making. A place where there is no emptiness hanging like a sword above the land, no death to claim us.” He boldly asks the team “…isn’t that a dream worth having?”
Shaun senses when Chas Paske blows up Durringham. He grows angry and accuses the scout team of being responsible. He tells the Reza team that they are the last mercenary team left on Lalonde and that all the possessed will now be coming for them. He later has a change of attitude when he sees all of Father Horst’s orphans crying their eyes out with fear and longing for their parents (who are all possessed now.) He tells Reza that they must quickly move the children away as the possessed are about to attack. This is the first indication we have that some of the possessed, while not willing to go back to the beyond, are willing to assist the humans in their fight against their fellow possessors.
An 86 year old cosmonik, someone who has spent an inordinate amount of his life in free fall space flight. This has taken a toll on his body, with bones, muscles and organs degenerating. By now he has been completely reconstructed. Bones are exchanged with carbon-fiber struts. His diet is supplemented with pure electrical consumption. His skin has been totally replaced with a ochre silicon membrane that allows him direct exposure to space with out a special suit plus the ability to function in a vacuum for up to three weeks without a power or oxygen recharge. Perhaps Warlow’s most distinctive feature, however, is his arms. They are forked at the elbows, giving him two forearms, one containing the regular human hand/figure configuration, the other fitted with titanium sockets for accomplishing various mechanical tasks. Unlike many cosmoniks, however, he has retained his basic humanoid shape.
After successfully attaching the Lady MacBeth to a huge chuck of debris in Murora’s ring, Joshua gives the cosmonick the task of planting a ten-megaton device from the Lady Mac’s last combat wasp as a mine near the Gramine (the possessed ship closest to the Lady Mac). The intent is to destroy that vessel and better the Lady Mac’s chances of pulling off Joshua’s ambitious Lagrange maneuver. He is some 12 kms distant from the Lady Mac in space when, with a sense of isolation growing in him, he asks to communicate (via an accompanying Edenist bitek processing block) alone with Aethra. He asks the unfinished Edenist habitat about the nature of death with the ultimate aim of ascertaining if the habitat can accept a person’s memories via neural nanonics rather than through affinity. In other words, can an Adamist transfer memories into a habitat multiplicity?
He wants to guarantee the success of Joshua’s escape by detonating the device himself as the Gramine passes him in orbit, thus being assured of blowing up the ship. His rationale is that he has very few good years left anyway. His memories and thought processes will begin to leave him long before his artificial body will die.
Aethra agrees to take in his memories, though she warns that the process will be much slower than affinity. She begins to accept his memory transfer. Warlow detonates his nuke, completely destroying the Gramine just as Joshua begins his escape maneuver.
Kelly Tirrel -
24 years old. One of Joshua’s many lovers. Independent minded personality. An aspiring reporter who pushes her way into covering the mercenary action on Lalonde as her “make or break” chance to become a renowned reporter. She follows Reza Malin's merc team down to the surface. She is injured when the scout team is assaulted by the possessed at the village of Pamiers.
Being a reporter and familiar with communications systems, she gets the idea to use the LDC’s geosynchronous communication platform to send a repeating message to Joshua aboard the Lady Mac at Aethra as to their location and their predicament. Kelly provides great assistance in seeing to the children during the Reza team’s escape from under the red cloud and while they are pursued by numerous possessed pikemen and knights. After Reza detonates his team’s nuke, she and Father Horst go with the children in the hovercraft to rendezvous with the Lady MacBeth’s spaceplane, while the Reza team meets its death trying to hold off the repeated attacks of the possessed.
As her news editors and corporate superiors begin to review her report of the action on Lalonde they realize that it can’t be condensed into anything less than 3 hours. Kelly argues over every little cut, passionately defending the entire piece as containing vital information that must be made REAL to everyone who accesses the report when it is made available. She also insists upon being the anchor for the report herself partly out of jealousy for the more famous news anchor woman and partly out of a driving desire to effectively communicate what has been let loose upon the galaxy.
After making her datavised reports on Lalonde, she takes the enormous amount of money it generates for her and decides to place herself into zero-tau in order to avoid death and the beyond.
Kelly has problems, however, securing a permanent zero-tau reservation for herself. Her employer is reluctant to issue her pension that would pay for such a placement. This, combined with the horrors she witnessed on Lalonde and the hopeless threat of eternity in the beyond, sends her on a binge with Present Time Reality programs. Lacing the PTR’s with special “black” programs, she treats herself to almost constant pleasure trips while blocking memories of her experiences on Lalonde. Her addiction takes her to the edge of death through malnutrition and compulsive stimulation that threatens to damage the neurons of her brain.
But Lieria makes her way to visit Kelly, interrupting one of her trips. Kelly beseeches the Kiint being to tell her how she can escape the beyond, but Lieria refuses to discuss the matter. Instead, she pays Kelly one million fuseodollars for the entire, unedited data recording of her experiences on Lalonde. Lieria thanks her and leaves saying that Kelly has “contributed valuable information to our race’s store of knowledge.”
With the million fuseodollars she can now secure permanent zero-tau placement. But a private visit by a Kiint is an almost unheard of event. Kelly knows there must be something on her Lalonde data that is of specific value to the Kiint. Her natural reporter’s curiosity is peaked. Someone must have told the Kiint about something on the data that was edited out in the public broadcasts.
She decides to pay a visit to Jay Hilton and learns of Jay’s conversation with the young Kiint, Haile, regarding the Tyrathca Sleeping God alter. Kelly immediately realizes that this must be what lead Lieria to come to her and acquire the entire data recording of Lalonde. The Sleeping God alter is on the recording.
Kelly discusses this with Parker Higgens and Ione. Since the Kiint obviously have an interest in the Sleeping God, then everyone takes a renewed interest in the possibilities that might be contained there in relation to the reality dysfunction. Parker Higgens believes that the Sleeping God might be some sort of advanced technology that can be used against the possessed.
Captain of the blackhawk Udat. He is approached by Dr. Alkad Mzu about the possibility of transporting her off Tranquillity to pick up some unnamed cargo. She datavises the type-definition files to Meyer. He gives her a quote. She says she will be checking with other captains for quotes as well. Later, Meyer’s neural nanonics discovers that one of his memory cells is being altered by Dr. Mzu’s datavised information. His internal safeguard programs make adjustments to isolate the problem. A time-delay code is uncovered that rearranges the cargo information into data on something completely different. Something that surprises Meyer and inspires him to rise to the “challenge” Dr. Mzu’s mission would pose. He assists Dr. Mzu’s escape from Tranquillity by swallowing the Udat INSIDE Tranquillity. The swallow required a flawless precision that was thought impossible. His neural nanonics were subjected to tremendous shock in the Udat's escape from Tranquillity with Dr. Mzu in tow.
After finally recovering from the mental trauma he experienced in assisting in Dr,. Mzu's escape from Tranquillity, he takes the Udat to Nyiru, an asteroid orbiting the planet Narok. There Dr. Mzu paid her fee and left as mysteriously as she had arrived in his life. He only saw her twice during the flight. He spends several days at the asteroid's hospital undergoing repair and rehabilitation of his neuron symbionts. When he is finally able to leave, he and the crew of the Udat settle in to their first ZTT jump. At that point a datavised message automatically plays aboard the ship recorded earlier by Dr. Mzu. She informs Meyer and the crew that she knows the Udat was part of the Omuta mercenary squadron that intercepted her mission thirty years ago to deploy the Neutronium Alchemist against that planet. In retaliation for that, she has planted a mechanism in the ship's life support system that creates a distortion in the Udat's wormhole that will ultimately devours the ship. Within seconds the blackhawk and its crew are obliterated.
Melvyn Ducharme -
Fusion specialist for the Lady Mac.
Ashley Hanson -
Pilot of The Lady Mac. 67 years old but was born well over 300 years ago. Reasonably wealthy, in 2229 he signed over everything to the Jovian Bank in exchange for a zero-tau pod maintenance contract. He alternates 50 years in entropy-free stasis with five years of adventure in the Confederation. A self-proclaimed “futurologist.” Joshua is as interested in him for his tales of the past as he is in his avian prowess.
He is wounded in the thigh during a shootout between Confederation agents and two possessed that enter a bar on Ayacucho. The wound is treated with a simple medical nanonic patch.
Parker Higgins -
Eighth director of the Laymil research project. 85 years old. Appointed to his post as the last act of the Second Lord of Ruin (Maurice Saldana - Ione’s father). He goes to Trafalgar to consult with Confederation officials regarding the possession crisis. He is shown the Mortonridge flek and realizes that it is the same phenomenon as what the Laymil experienced as revealed in the Ruin Ring Research project. At the insistence of Admiral Aleksandrovich (and in spite of his personal protests) he takes a team of naval weaponry specialists back with him to assist in the research effort, now redirected to try and find a solution to the growing crisis. Higgins knows the Laymil culture well enough to realize that they would never use weapons to address an attack. Rather, they would employ “psychological inhibitors distributed the spaceholms’ life-harmony gestalt,” essentially meaning that they would attempt to reason with their enemy.
He reports back to Ione after his visit to the First Admiral. He expresses a personal objection to allowing the Kiint to remain on the Laymil project because they obviously knew what happened to the Laymil all along. He doesn’t believe the Kiint intend to assist the project in any meaningful way. Ione objects to this reasoning, stating that the Kiint are of superior intelligence and might be attempting to “nudge us in the right direction” through their continued involvement with the project.
Higgins makes two suggestions to Ione. First, he suggests that Joshua be consulted to see if the exact coordinates where the original electronics stack was located could be obtained. Perhaps, he suggests, there are more Laymil electronics to be found. Ione informs him that Joshua is not on Tranquillity at the moment (he is searching for Dr. Mzu, though she keeps this secret). Tranquillity suggests that Neeves and Sipika, the original scavengers who tried to kill Joshua inside the ruin ring as he discovered the Laymil electronics stack, be consulted to see what can be learned from them. Ione tells Higgins she will do what she can to ascertain the coordinates. Secondly, Higgins recommends a more thorough scan of the Laymil home planet’s orbital track. It is hoped that there might some residual energy that might tell something of what happened to the long since vanished planet. Ione agrees.
His research team discovers the sensorium of the Laymil suicide as possession threatens their race. His analysis concludes that, though the Laymil committed suicide, they had solved the essential nature of the beyond. For them, the suicide was the fruition of that resolution. Lieria agrees with that assessment, but quickly adds that suicide is probably not a valid solution for humankind. Higgins becomes enraged at the Kiint because the xenocs understand the nature of the beyond themselves and out of frustration of the fact that whatever knowledge and understanding the Laymil achieved about the beyond was lost in their suicide. He accuses the Lieria and her race of merely studying humanity. Lieria calmly replies, “I must repeat, the answer to your problem lies within you, not us.”
A member of the Tyrathca breeder caste, who speaks with Reza Malin’s scout team about the attack of the possessed upon Coastuc-RT, the theft of the starship Santa Clara and the nature of the Tyrathca tradition of “The Sleeping God.”
Edmund Rigby –
A possessor who takes on a body in Boston on Norfolk. He was a captain of the Australian Marines during the Vietnam War. He died during the war, but now uses Vietcong tactics against the hapless militia that Grant Kavanagh puts together to put down the “rebellion” in the city. As he attempts to force Grant Kavanagh to submit to possession, he loses control of his own mental processes and is taken over by Quinn Dexter, returning from the beyond.
Captain Maynard Khanna -
38 year old officer of the Confederation Navy’s executive staff. Sent by First Admiral Aleksandrovich to meet with Ione to confirm the Third Lord of Ruin’s intention to honor her father’s commitment to keep Dr. Alkad Mzu confined on Tranquillity. The Captain believes that Dr. Mzu might be contemplating an escape from Tranquillity in order to deploy the Neutronium Alchemist against Omuta.
After hearing Mullein’s surveillance report about Capone’s actions at Arnstadt and Kursk, he recommends that the Confederation use observation voidhawks to “seed” the space around the planets with stealthed fusion mines in order to disrupt the takeover of the planet.
Upon learning of the Capone organization’s intentions to attack Toi-Hoi from Syrinx, he assists Admiral Aleksandrovich in planning a counterattack operation involving over 700 Confederation warships. The ships come from a variety of locations within a 70 lyr radius of Tranquillity and are ordered to that habitat as a rendezvous point.
Unfortunately, he is later one of the few non-possessed humans trapped inside the courtroom when it is ordered sealed during the white fire attack by Jacqueline Couteur and her compatriots. He is possessed by Perez, who promptly discovers that Khanna is aware of the impending attack being planned against the Capone organization’s fleet at Toi-Hoi. Perez immediately tells Jacqueline of his newfound knowledge. Perez is sent back to the beyond to prevent him from revealing that the possessed now know of the Confederation’s plans. Khanna’s body is left dead and unpossessed.
Hasan Rawand -
Captain of the Dechal. He is very experienced with the financial side of trading and convinces Joshua to cooperate with him in an illegal cargo haul of antimatter confinement equipment. In the scheme, Rawand is the primary carrier, with Joshua serving as a decoy. He and his crew also get into a brawl with Andre Duchamp and his crew over a 800,000 fuseodollar debt that Duchamp owes him. During the fight one of Duchamp's men is killed and Erick Thakrar intervenes with some of his specialized CNIS weaponry to allow Duchamp's crew to escape. Later, Hasan happens upon the Villeneuve's Revenge again while it is docked at the Culey asteroid. Again Duchamp escapes, this time due to intervention by CNIS agents who kill Hasan and his crew as they attempt to kill Duchamp and Thakrar.
Laton’s daughter. She is present at the sacrifice of Powel Manani and the emergence of the reality dysfunction. She witnesses it while cloaked in her chameleon suit, but the possessed Ivets still spot her and fire energy bolts at her. She erupts in flames and is burned to complete ashes. To the Ivets this is such a waste. They wanted to possess her body. But nothing remains.
Carter McBride -
10 year old boy captured by Camillia and one of Laton’s incorporated slaves. They murder the boy and hang him upside-down in a tree where Aberdale’s settlers would find him. This serves Laton’s purpose of turning the entire settlement against the Ivets thanks to Father Horst, who, upon seeing such debauchery, tells everyone that Quinn and the rest of the Ivets are devil worshippers.
Nang, Lieria and Haile -
A Kiint family worker as part of the Laymil research team in Tranquillity. Haile is the child, a daughter, about two meters tall with a body more rounded and whiter than the its parents.
Son of Eysk, a powerful and wealthy businessman dealing in vast quantities of seafood on Atlantis. 24 years old, robust with tan skin and long curling hair. Has a brief affair with Syrinx.
Oski Katsura -
Head of the Electronics Division of the Laymil Research project on Tranquillity. 70 years old. Under her guidance, and with the help of a team of Kiint assistants, the largely intact circuit board that Joshua scavenged from the Ruin Ring is translated into intelligible Laymil sensorium.
Candace Elford -
Lalonde’s chief sheriff. 57 years old. Is puzzled by the poor quality of the satellite images over the Quallhiem counties when the images appear to be working perfectly in all other parts of the planet. Still, she is able to detect that six of ten villages in the area contain some burned out buildings. Initial reports are that there is an Ivet uprising of some sort and the villagers have started killing the Ivets in the area. She decides to send a 100-man “posse” on some colonist boats up to the region to investigate and bring order back to the villages. Candace is forced to admit to Colin Rexrew that 1/3 of Durringham is effectively out of control, not from the activities of the possessed, but from the lawlessness that precedes the coming of the possessed as they slowly make their way nearer to the Lalonde capital. When Rexrew inquires as to whether the city can be held against the impending invasion, Candance replies that she doubts it. As the situation continues to deteriorate in Durringham, refuges begin to flock to the city from outlying areas. Panic is becoming the order of the day. She resorts to using her meager security resources to control specific strategic areas, including the spaceport and the hospitals.