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From: Michael Andre-Driussi <mantis@sirius.com>
Subject: (whorl) OBW contains five frames
Date: Thu, 8 Jun 2000 08:37:19 

Timothy Reilly wrote

>Nick Price's review of OBW was
>also a fine job (and needless to say I agree with the diplomatic criticisms
>it contains of the plotting of TBLS), but one point of detail - how do we
>know Hari Mau was searchoing for Silk on the Whorl? - my impression is that
>he was doing so on Blue only.

Oo-oo, I can provide some parts of an answer for that one!

ON BLUE'S WATERS, among other wonders, contains five distinct timeframes:
Blue, Green, Whorl, Present, and Future.  Most of the "action" is in the
Blue frame (the beginning of the quest, boat on the sea, etc.), and then
there is some in the Present frame (the writing of the book,
administration, the war, etc.).  And the Future is contained in the
footnotes added by others.

But Green and the Whorl are covered, too.  For example, we know a bit about
the trees and lianas on Green (189), as well as the mystery of the Rajan's
death on Green (195)--at least, that there =is= a mystery.  We know even
more (and yet, paradoxically less) about events on the Whorl: the pencase
from Horn's father's shop (burned out), references to a fellow named Pig,
the presence of Oreb, Silk's robe, Hyacinth's azoth . . . that Hyacinth is
dead (379) and Olivine is alive (290) . . . even the corn (310) that was
the main purpose of the quest, and a new eye for Marble (310).  And more.

We don't know how the narrator got from Green to the Whorl.  But we do know
how he got from the Whorl to Gaon:

"When I came here I was a prisoner--a prisoner who was respected, true.  I
was treated with great kindness and even reverence by Hari Mau and his
friends, but I was a prisoner just the same.  I knew it, and so did they .
. .

"I owe this town and its collective population nothing, because I was taken
from the _Whorl_ against my will" (309).

So it becomes clear that the Rajan, finding his quest in ruins (for reasons
which remain obscure: after all, he has the corn, the eye, etc.), was
willing to remain on the Whorl (or wait for a different lander) yet was
compelled by Hari Mau and company to board a lander.  Which led directly to
his situation in the Present frame (as rajan of Gaon).

(Also, iirc, Hari Mau was looking for Silk based upon what he knew from


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