Warmth and Respect 2016-04-04 18:23:55
Head Curator of Lilitic Antiquities

Warmth and Respect

Íora Chúkotía was never really a happy person, excepting perhaps when she was drunk and had nowhere to be the next day. In every major literary canon, there are stripes of authors, of either sex, who suffer from the terrible affliction of self-destructive alcoholism. There were few other Lilitai who coped so poorly and yet maintained careers of such significance, largely due to the availability of ready and superior therapies that became available after contact with humans.

Well-known are the surface details of Íora's late, lonely days and her reputedly awful fortunes at the game of love, Dzhemesselía. Less has been said about Íora's deep and protracted struggles with regret, anxiety, and at times, neurosis.

In a society of people that live for potentially thousands of years, time has a way of creating new arrangements of familiar pieces as the centuries wage on. The Lyrisclensiae call this phenomenon societal plate tectonics, as they experience it to some extent as a result of their memory transmission across generations, and have occasionally observed it in other long-lived cultures. Old minds, it seems—the best of them, anyway—have a knack for reinventing themselves through drift and evolution. When one has so much time, even serious defects like schizophrenia may be overcome and, eventually, forgotten.

This makes Fínanía something of a paradox at first, as by contrast with her peers she was quite constant in her personality. One journalist wryly suggested that society actually revolved around her rather than Sarthía, just at a safe distance. Understanding Fínanía is a matter of understanding reopened wounds. Immediately prior to the Vendashro, and in the year following, Íoya was smitten for the first time in her life with love for another of her kind. It was not a good love by Sarthía's standards; it was one-sided, impossible idolatry and affection for someone staggeringly out of reach for Íoya, who was still accustomed then to the station of records clerk and had never truly wielded much social responsibility.

The object of Íoya's affections was none other than Moiléa herself, the slokdtaba who had secretly served on the royal advisory council for generations. Moiléa's appearance was of energizing, maternal significance to all those who took part in the Vendashro, and enabled them to rekindle faith in their own species as one that had been vital in building the great star-empire of Ksreskézo. Íoya took things a step further, growing obsessed with the woman herself. This filled a role in her life that she never knew was missing—indeed, a role missing from most of the lives of the slokdtabasa, entirely without their knowledge—and in a way that spilled over readily into other needs. There is no record of Íora ever approaching the matron during her two short years with the nascent Lilitai, but it is clear she was deeply affected by Moiléa's passing.
Samantics comment   12 months ago