Sunday, 24 January 2016

Follow The Arm

On the site of Long Island or Manhattan but on Earth/1:

"The ghouloon reacted...reaching out to grab her..."
-SM Stirling, Drakon (New York, 2000), Chapter One, p. 18.

In New York on Earth/2, when Gwen stops herself from falling:

"Something fell past her." (p. 21)

Later, a detective sees:

"It was an arm, detached at the shoulder. Naked, except for reddish...fur, fur with darker spots. Thick, dense fur running all the way down to the knuckles." (p. 27)

Thus, a ghouloon's severed arm has accompanied Gwen from Earth/1 to Earth/2. If we remember pp. 18 and 21 when reading p. 27, we follow this sequence of events in three stages. We already know what a ghouloon is: a baboon with genetic material from dogs, cats and human beings, with vocal chords, opposable thumbs and enough intelligence to operate simple machines. But its arm provides an intriguing mystery for an NYPD detective.

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

I remember the ghouloon's arm as well. There was a reason why Stirling included that little detail. Technology had advanced far enough in our Earth/2 that DNA analysis revealed the grotesque genetic background of ghouloons. It gave the baffled NY police both a mystery and an intriguing clue. It was a very Sherlockian touch!