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From: "Robert Borski" <rborski@charter.net>
Subject: (whorl) Return to the Whorl: Early Predictions
Date: Mon, 11 Sep 2000 18:29:00 

While Horn is still in Gaon as Rajan, a fortune-teller comes and makes a
number of predictions about what is yet to transpire in his life. Writes
Horn: "It was the usual mix of flattery and menace--I would lead three towns
not my own to victory, would be tried for my life, would return as a
stranger to my sons' native place, find new love, and so on and so forth. I
will not put myself to the trouble of recording the entire rigamarole. When
he had finished I asked how I--or anyone whose future he foretold--might
know that his prophecies were valid; and he solemnly declared that the stars
themselves confirmed them."

Obviously, the stars have accorded themselves very well, and no doubt the
other events mentioned by the soothsayer will come to pass in RETURN TO THE
WHORL. But to the above list I'd like to append my own early speculations;
some build on theories I've already elaborated upon or had published
elsewhere, others are the result of half-baked notions that never quite
completely jelled; still others are pure fancy, the stuff of the coveted
Borski award. You should take them with the same grain of salt as the
Gaonese when told about the astral veracity of the fortune-teller's
divinations. ("Everybody laughed.")

Quadrifons, allegedly, has four faces. I predict an ontogenic quartet of
ape, shaman, scientist (complete with bug-eyed glasses), and robot. The
crossroads with which he's associated is actually the juncture of the New
and Short Sun series.

The Neighbors will have either two heads or be Janus-faced, linking them to
Typhon the First, galactic homeboy returned. Alternate theory: some of them
look like Horn. This is because Horn was purposely drawn by Seawrack's
singing to sexually assault her--not the kind of special talent a sane
person would desire, but one which does work to provide the Mother/Scylla
and her exiled Mainframe cabal (the people in the underwater boats) with
genetic material to work from. This artificial propagation ("My name is
Horn, also") may well explain the Neighbor's quasi-mysterious remark about
how "the Mother" is one of the sea goddess' name. I.e., Scylla's their

We will meet the oft-mentioned blind Pig, and the lesser mentioned Hound,
Patera Grig and Tansy. Babbie, when he shows up, will have a defective or
mending eye, and Horn will venture something to the effect that Babbie must
have injured it in a fight with another Blue beast or scratched it on a
thorn in his intercontinental travails.

Severian's sister, when met, will be told to fetch Incanto & Company
something to eat or drink, and the Cumaean may be present.

The fact that the inhumi don't fly from Green to Blue and/or can breed on
the latter are components of the Great Secret, but not its crux.

Robert Borski

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