Oct 21, 2019 10:51 AM
Foresight in the less fun parts of Kith
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"I'm sorry to hear that. Can you tell Daz he has my sympathies? Also, how did he and you fix it? Did you just focus on making Kiray good at thinking, or was it something more specific?"

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"He didn't know what thinking better was like, so he made some things up and some of them worked. I had that much, so I made up more things from there and I think Kiray's fine."

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"Can you describe any of the things you or he made up? I guess they might be hard to put into words."

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"It is, sorry."

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"That's alright."

That's probably all Margaret can get out of asking questions for now; the next step is to figure out what exactly she'll aim for once she knows how to aim. When she's not making food or sleeping, she plans. She only wants to take on this much responsibility once, and she wants to live up to it; she's going to be thorough.

Margaret's notes-bangle is replaced by a scroll, still mounted to a bracelet so she can't drop it. She writes a massive pile of specifications; she can decide what to cut later if she decides it's safer not to try too many things at once. The new person should be female, sixteen, and in good health, physically strong, with antibodies to every disease on Earth and here; she should have excellent stamina and coordination; she should have acute hearing and the best possible eyesight. Skin that won't sunburn, a very low risk of cancer or heart disease, this height and that weight and a cooperative metabolism and healthy flexible joints and minimal need for sleep, and and and. 

Mentally, she should be as intelligent as humanly possible, with a strong moral compass, concerned for the well-being of others and disinclined to violence except in self-defense. She should be fluent in every language Margaret has ever heard of, but especially the local one and English. She should have all Margaret's background knowledge of this world and of Earth, plus Earth-expert-level knowledge of physics and biology and chemistry and engineering and medicine and fashion design and mining and farming and every other form of science and art and craft she can think of in hours of thinking and writing, not to mention being as good at people-design as possible.

(The wake cycle after she questioned Sovi, Margaret prophecies, "Not working memory, but memorization and prioritization, matters for creation." She stops thinking in terms of "how much can I fit into a person" and starts thinking in terms of priority ordering. Even with starscape letting her write as small as she can read, her scroll gets pretty long.)

Margaret still can't make clothes, so the new person should share her companions' lack of a nudity taboo. Similarly, she should be content with the limited social circle of their little group, but not averse to welcoming new people if they're required. Not too bothered by the lack of modern Earth conveniences, but ambitious and inspired to invent them. Neither too much caution or not enough, a love of building and inventing but the flexibility to do whatever work is most useful, an eye for the long-term future. She should be generally cheerful and happy to exist. And, if and only if it's possible, she should be about to starscape and willing to go for magic.

Once she runs out of things to write, she goes over it with Sovi and Kiray, asking for help with anything she forgot.

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They don't have much in the way of suggestions except that they think the new person shouldn't get tired of working or traveling or whatever else needs doing the way Daz can sometimes.

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Margaret adds mental stamina and industriousness to her specification, sleeps on it one more time, and wakes up in the morning still unable to see any further flaws. She's as ready as she'll ever be.

Sparks coalesce into a human form, tall and muscular and symmetrical. The woman's eyes open, and a voice built for singing says, "Hello everyone. I think I'll call myself Alana. Don't worry, Margaret, I feel fine. And I know just what to do." She stretches her limbs, experimentally but with an athlete's grace. "My, what a rich and untapped resource this round is! We're going to build so many things together."

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