Letter 2

Church of Unity Northwestern Synod
Shen Guest House
Shen, West Nivet

autumn equinox, 12 AU

Dear Roza,

I finally got some time to continue the story. It took us two days in miserable cold rainy weather to get here, but at least we got to stay in the modern style of waystation, where they have permanent staff to keep the place clean, and the fires going, and you can get the use of a nice clean dry bed and a hot meal and hot wash water for a reasonable fee. They didn't want to let me pay, but I told them we could afford it, although I was tempted to offer to do some healing in exchange the way Granda worked his way across Nivet almost fifty years ago, and Da kept us fed out-T when we were kids. There was nobody sick there anyway, except a young renSime with a hangover, and it will do him good to consider whether the consequences were worth the cause. It's such a different world from before Unity and the early years. An itinerant healer would starve. Good.

I talked to the Missions Board and explained that they were going to have to stand up to the Tecton in defense of their people more, and not let things get to the point they'd gotten to with Jori. I pointed out that while demanding decisions in writing, signed and stamped, in triplicate, before you help some poor kid sitting right there in changeover is absolutely odious, they were going to have to try to get their people to get stuff stated verbally in formal legal terms in front of witnesses, if at all possible. If it isn't possible, or will clearly result in what's right not being done, their Gen should go ahead and do what's right and try to get the authorizations sorted out afterwards. This will make the bureaucrats apply their disgruntlement to their own people on the scene, who are used to being abused, if it gets that far. Church people must consider that the Tecton personnel will not want to get their superiors down on them for their own bureaucratic imperfections, therefore they should encourage the Tecton people to arrange things so that their superiors will not be alerted to the fact that bureaucratic imperfections may have appeared to occur.

If they get hassled later, they should claim authorization from highest authority (their God), and stick to this tactic as long as possible. I pointed out that you won't find a more secular organization than the Tecton, and they have no concept of how to deal with an organization like the Church if it doesn't back down and continues to claim the moral high ground with divine authority. Eventually the Tecton will learn that dealing with the Church by the usual method (intimidation) doesn't work, and rather than be embarrassed they will just not want to get into these confrontations and will avoid them. While this does not constitute respect, it has essentially all the same practical implications as respect.

I pointed out that while Yilli, Sectuib in Teiu, sounds very impressive, Teiu is not Zeor, Yilli is not Klyd or even Muryin, and Teiu is not one of the more influential Houses in the Tecton. When Yilli, Sectuib in Teiu, QN-1, goes before a board of QN-1s at a Tecton hearing, while she may technically be before a group of her equals, in actual fact, few if any of the board members will personally regard this to be the case behind their impenetrable showfields. Still, I've trained their people, I've manipulated their selyn systems with my own, I've qualified them with my own body, I have pledged them to my House as members with my own tentacles. The Church has given me the opportunity to save many lives through the Gens I've trained. I stand by my methods and their consequences, and I have sworn to defend my members. But I think we can all agree that it's better if it doesn't get to this point.

I also explained that while the press is their friend, in case of conflict, it is most likely a lot more the Tecton's friend.

I told them that I was proud to have trained Jori, and proud to have him as a member of my House. That he did the Right Thing in every way, despite the consequences to himself, including getting a formal verbal statement from the Sime Center Controller that management of the changeover was being passed to him, and they should give him a medal, or a vacation or a promotion, or whatever they do to show their members that they approve of him, and that he certainly deserves it for what I could zlin he suffered worrying about that hearing. I mean, here's a young Gen who has stood up to angry mobs out-T, he's put his own body between Simes and the Kill. With no Sime to help him discern the risk, he's served First Transfer to kids who could turn out to be monster channels and strip him bare, but those bureaucrats in Capital had him intimidated. Besides, he's a Second now, he has more strength and confidence from the experience, and he can serve more changeovers too.

We talked about the new projects at the Church's Technical College in Cago for a while, and the ambient was really mellow by the time the meeting broke up. I think they were worried when they heard I was coming up to talk to them. But really, what could I do to them? Simeslam them silly?

More later. I've going to have trin with some Gens who are heading east to enter the seminary, and think they want to take Donor training from us so they can be missionaries out-T.

your sister and Sectuib,

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