This post has the following content warnings:
Jun 24, 2021 5:25 PM
Actana Silvers Interview Terry
+ Show First Post
Total: 179
Posts Per Page:
Permalink

"Great. Cthulu type deal." Sigh. "I am going to be very worried. I am totally unable to assess such things as a possible threat."

Permalink

"Cthulu? The shades are not that dangerous if you're mobile but they are everywhere."

Permalink

"Cthulu is a fictional evil god beyond human understanding, of which catching the barest glimpse is enough to drive the stoutest men to insanity. Fictional, I insist."

Permalink

"Alright, moving on. What are the genders norms in your world?" Pause. "Some people here are hermaphrodites, I don't know if that happens to humans that are not related to magical beings."

Permalink

"It is extremely rare and considered a dangerous medical condition, I believe. What exactly do you mean by gender norms? There are definitely - some - but..."

Permalink

"Huh, I never heard of it being dangerous. In Actana, it's very common for a culture to build a lot of rules and attitudes around genders, one of which is that one gender is superior to the other and that it directly correlates to physical sex. There is variance, but it is very common for humans to think that men are supposed to lead and are superior for this and that arbitrary reason. While Faen," he points at his own ears, "inverted that with women on top. The various Giants' city-states believed in roles that by defaulted mapped into human ones but a woman could earn a male role and a man could step down to a female role. Except for the one city-state founded by hermaphrodites partially under the motivation that gender norms are stupid and anti-meritocratic. People who didn't fit the binary gender norms of male and female had varied degrees of acceptance."

Permalink

"Now that sounds familiar alright. There is a little bit of that but in modern days it's generally considered backward and barbaric to explicitly state that men are superior to women."

Permalink

"Oh, good. Does this apply to non-men calling themselves superior?"

Permalink

"Yes. See... You get two rough camps. This is an oversimplification but it's a decent way to explain. Conservative and liberal. Conservatives generally believe men should be providers and women should be caretakers, are more religious, less accepting of homosexuality and anything that breaks the gender binary, disapprove of welfare programs, support the personal right to own weapons, are more racist and opposed to immigraton, support a strong military more, prefer less government powers and like personal freedoms, and probably some other things I'm forgetting. Liberals are largely the opposite of that. Again, oversimplifying."

Permalink

He makes some variously confused faces at this. "Okay. How do liberal acceptance of gender non-conformity interacts with the thing where women are providers and men are caretakers? They sound like Faen."

Permalink

"Liberals have the same gender roles but tend to believe they are not... Binidng. Or shouldn't be, at least. 'Gender equality' is a common term. You can get in trouble for firing someone specifically because they are a woman, or have dark skin - we judge race by skin color. That sort of thing."

Permalink

"Ah, I understand that you qualified with 'oversimplifying', but be careful with that sort of broad statement. Humans here do associate coloration with race, or at least foreignness? Do dark-skinned people have something similar to women going on?"

Permalink

"'Blacks', a particular ethnic group are seen as low class and violent and prone to criminality, and looked down upon by some. Usually this is a subtle social cues thing. They also tend to be poorer. The other racial differences aren't as major or fraught. I'm just trying to cover things in a reasonable time frame. How would you explain your entire culture, hm?"

Permalink

Eli gives him a tired smile. "Well, that depends on whom I am trying to explain things to. If I don't know anything about their culture, I would try to be thorough." Pause. "For the sake of both honesty and clarity, I should mention: This is actually the longest proper interview out of four attempts."

Permalink

"What, nobody else was calm enough to be sensible about explaining things?"

Permalink

"Pretty much. Ah, experimental magic like this tends to draw on connections and similarities unless you specify things carefully and sometimes even then. Which can be great in some ways, but... it wasn't that surprising when our first attempt brought us Vitek, who might be the last survivor of his world. We did an on the fly correction and that got us a couple during sexual relations. We changed things again, very thoroughly, against that happening. Third attempt got us a man that was very angry about the kidnapping and kept shouting obscenities about how the deity of his world would destroy us. We didn't manage to explain anything to that last one, but we did explain things to the other three in a less structured manner. Vitek is actually with us now. And the couple's world was apparently unwelcoming."

Permalink

"No risk of that with me. You may want to add 'not operating any machinery or any vehicles' to your list, though... Before today I would have given you ten to one odds his god does not actually exist. But other universes rather throws that out the window, you can't expect your own rules to hold."

Permalink

"Indeed, I didn't quite believe our own myths, but apparently some of them were true and vengeful. So that world is on the bottom of our revisitation list." Eli ponders. "Do you want to switch things up a bit? Try me explaining things to see if it's more efficient?"

Permalink

"Yes, I'm rather unsure what your culture is, what the 'magic' can do - that could be revolutionary, back home - whether you'll make problems for the U.S. if you want to go that route..."

Permalink

"Reasonable. I will address each topic separately. First thing worth explaining is that this group of people," he twirls his finger around, as if to indicate the ones in their immediate vicinity, "doing the summoning thing and trying to find a new world is primarily composed of a random assortment group of people that were forcibly taken years ago by a cult. That cult discovered an old portal to the moon and that being on it helped the infertility problem. Summarizing a lot. The cult is no more. Some decided to stay and settle the place, and maybe figure out what was going on with the infertility thing. One of us figured out how to reach other worlds, and after sometime perfecting that stumbled upon a world with these larges deposits of liquefied magic energy, which we used to powered up the process- Oh, sorry, this is supposed to be about my culture. My point is that my culture is a mix-match of unlikely friends from all over the globe. I am bisexual, I am dating multiple people without them being lied to, my grandparents would be horrified about this if the world wasn't ending and none of my parental figures has a problem with that. Like the people of Themarcia, I think that gender norms should be entirely optional. So should be clothes, though that is more on behalf of my twin than myself."

Permalink

Snrk. "Grandparents being horrified of things the youth thinks are perfectly alright may be a universal constant. So you found a vast fuel source? Long term you'll want to check if it will ever run out. We were very dependent as a civilization on fossilized hydrocarbons for a while - still are, somewhat, but trying to budge away from that."

Permalink

Fossilized hydrocarbons is sure a term. "Currently, lack of fuel isn't a problem. Uh, but noted. I am not sure if that's enough about my culture? I am kinda of an outlier in terms of opinions and outlook either way."

Permalink

"You burn them," he says in response to the unspoken question. "The heat is useful to cause machines to move, and we have a lot of machines, so extracting underground oil and coal is an industry employing millions of people. I don't expect to get a good sense of your peoples' culture aside from what questions you ask and how you behave. Perhaps tell me some of the biggest scandals and political issues you remember?"

Permalink

"Oh, sounds similar to steam machines. Impressive. On scandals. The Faen have been split into three major factions for the past three or so centuries and recently heirs to the two smaller ones of those three tried to join forces through political marriage, which was scandalous on multiple axis the Sun Court princess was only third in line even if popular, while the Storm Court prince was... the entire Storm Court side started because a prince wanted the throne without his sisters being ahead of line and that marriage implies one side submitting to the other ideology. Plus, they were ambushed and killed in ambiguous circumstances and basically the three sides are accusing the other two sides of conspiracy and treason, sparking active conflicts again. There has been pressure in many Giant city-states to allow people to get fertility help in exchange for indenturing of the resulting babies, which led to at least a few neighborhoods being burned down and at least one town losing all of its two hundred slaves. Which somewhat leads to the next thing because the Storm Court is trying to make an alliance with pirates - who are often ex-slaves - and Themarcia - who often trades with pirates, which is not good diplomacy with other Giant city-states or even with one's own subjects." Pause. "The Themarcian princess got someone and herself pregnant here on the moon, and the best compromise we managed, was making people agree to a series of duels after the babies were expected to be born."

Permalink

Sounds like 18th century Europe. Except for the giants.

"Hmm. Duels only exist in dramatic fiction these days. And democracies don't go in for political marriages and complicated dynasties nearly as much as the old monarchies did. Good on those two hundred slaves. Er, if they survived."

Total: 179
Posts Per Page: