Feb 22, 2020 1:26 PM
sequel to maitimor
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"I guess everyone who didn't buy an airport will be pretty eager to get in on all this magic and might be on board with that."

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"Speaking of airports, unless you want this thing detailed down to the potted plants I have it specced out now, three cheers for computer aided design and this nifty utility that simulates pedestrian traffic flow. Was I at some point going to explain IUDs to some people?"

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"Yes! I can have them brought in now."

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"...here, or do you have someplace slightly more like a lecture hall?"

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"Couple rooms over. It's not all that differently designed but it's bigger. While they're on their way I might have...advice for going over well, culturally?"

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"...okay, hit me."

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"There are lots of countries that are sexually liberal and make the math work out with poisons and infanticide, in those countries this'll just make the math work out without that and it'll be great. Maybe Osirion will eventually slide down that road but no one wants it to, and no one's going to be eager to shove it. But there are problems which people care about which it solves, like poor hardworking city families with more kids than they can afford to feed and minor nobility splitting and splitting their inheritances or shoving all their excess kids into dangerous occupations. Your - ideal introductory case here - is a harmonious family with four kids who can't care for and educate and marry a fifth or sixth. And then we can add some edge cases, like obviously prostitutes should have access so they don't kill their kids, but that can't be the public face of the thing."

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"Okay."

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Then he can shoo lots of church people into the room for the talk.

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Cam puts up a big screen, light-projected like his handheld computer. "Hi," he tells the audience, "my name is Cam. What've you all been told about what you're doing here?"

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"You're a visitor from another planet. That planet has technology that enables women to avoid pregnancy, and there is interest in introducing it in Osirion so that family sizes can be smaller."

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"That's correct. There's also the equivalent for men - and more than the one I have a presentation about for women, but this is I think the best combination of reliability, ease of introduction, low-maintenance, etcetera. It's called an IUD, which in my native language stands for 'intrauterine device' but has been rendered into its own word over time." Slide. "Looks like this. Inserted into the uterus like so," slide, "it's nearly one hundred percent effective at preventing conception - until it's removed, whereupon fertility is immediately restored. Side effects include cramping, spotty bleeding, and rarer things -" Slide, list, he reads it out. "Questions at this point?"

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Do women insert it themselves? How long does it last? Does it interfere with marital relations? In the very rare cases where it causes lasting problems, are they the sort a Cure spell handles?

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"No, they don't do it themselves, I'm going to tell you guys how. If you'd like to, say, rethink the gender balance of this group for that reason, I'll wait. Fifteen years. Very rarely someone will claim he can feel the string and if that bothers your patients you can trim it for them. I am not intimately familiar with the capabilities of your magic but I believe it handles wounds and infections both, am I right?"

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It does do this! They will probably only have women do these surgeries but their supervisors should still know about how everything works. 

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Sure. So here is a speculum and here is what petroleum jelly is for and so on and so forth.

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His audience is uncomfortable but attentive.

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And that is his how-to presentation. He recommends based on historical experience with other human populations that they make these available without requiring husband (or father) consent, "but obviously that's a nonbinding recommendation, I'll provide all the supplies anyway."

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The Council will probably figure that out.

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"Questions?"

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Some technical ones!

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He can answer these no problem.

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Then that is all. They are very excited, really, once they get over how it's weird.

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"Cool. Let me get you starter packs of everything to get you underway on priority patients who have four kids under five and a laid-up husband or what have you, but I'll fill up a warehouse once I'm pointed at one." Everybody gets a totebag with a copy of the presentation and a few procedures' worth of supplies.

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Everyone is awed.

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