|original art work by Virgil Finlay|
The Overseers have captured and imprisoned "the" replicoid of Isaac Asimov and a "woman" who they know as Mahasvin, a member of the outlawed Dead Widower Society. However, "the" replicoid of Isaac Asimov who is inside Observer Base (in Chapter 3) is not the same individual who was brought to Earth by Many Sails in Chapter 1. The Overseers have been tricked!
|The Qaz Nanotropy|
When taken to Observer Base by Overseer Sachiz (at the end of Chapter 1), Mahasvin was questioned about her presence on Earth. She told the Overseers that she had gone "back to Earth" while trying to convince "the" Asimov replicoid that unseen aliens had been secretly visiting Earth.
While playing their two roles, Mahasvin "explains" to Asimov (and the readers) what the Overseers believe is going on. When the Overseers decide that "the" Asimov replicoid has had enough time to read The Qaz Nanotropy, they interrogate Asimov, seeking information about the Retrofuturians (who the Overseers view as the chief trouble-makers now plaguing Earth).
Eventually "the" Asimov replicoid convinces the Overseers that he knows nothing about either the Dead Widowers or the Retrofuturians because he has been away from Earth for the past 25 years. This revelation from Asimov sets off a panic among the Overseers who worry that Genesaunts might be returning to Earth, which if true might mean an end to their "control" of Observer Base. The Overseers vow to hold Mahasvin under close observation, suspecting that she might be a Genesaunt spy. However, they offer "the" Asimov replicoid a chance to spy for them and infiltrate the Retrofuturians.
Now, suspecting that both of their "guests" (Asimov and Mahasvin) might be functioning as Genesaunt spys, the Overseers decide to keep them both as prisoners at Observer Base.
Yōd and Zeta and I each have different ideas about how to write Nivsaham into A Search Beyond. Unlike my two collaborators, I prefer a rather literal acceptance of the suggestion that Nivsaham is a nanoscopic life form.
|In the Ekcolir Reality. Original|
cover art by Edmund Emshwiller
Zeta believes that it is not useful to even hint at the physical nature of Nivsaham, rather, that could be left as a mystery.
Next: into the Asimov Reality
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