Sunday, 24 January 2016

A Draka Among Us

SM Stirling, Drakon (New York, 2000).

When a lone Draka is stranded in New York, 1995, Earth/2, she efficiently kills a few people for immediate survival purposes but does she then become an sf horror villain stalking the subways, hunted by SWAT teams? No.

She uses:

knowledge of the past to acquire a fortune;
knowledge of biotechnology to build a business;
personal skills to acquire a few loyal, well rewarded, slaves.

A covert US government agency prefers to do business with her and to keep her biotech out of hostile hands rather than to treat her as a murder suspect. This causes problems for the NYPD detective investigating the murders and also for the enemy agent sent after her from Earth/1. Thus, we read a different kind of narrative than the one that we might have expected.

In Stirling's Conquistador, an Earth unlike ours is invaded from an Earth like, although not identical with, ours. In Drakon, an Earth like ours is invaded from an Earth unlike ours. Is Earth/2 our Earth? Maybe. But, on the other hand, any fiction differs in close details from reality and is to that extent set on an alternative Earth. There is no IngolfTech on Earth Real - as far as I know.

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

The mere idea of a REAL IngolfTech existing on our Earth is chilling!!!

And Gwen Ingolfsson would have been a NATURAL for a horror flick. She killed many people on Earth/2, beginning with the large criminal gang she wiped out single handed in that warehouse near the beginning of DRAKON. In fact, the police officers trying to track her down followed her, in part, from the trail of bodies she left behind.