Reply#1 - firstname.lastname@example.org
This is a good question! I've read ICB many times but cannot recall for the life of me how she got it, especially since it's not mentioned anywhere else except at the end as you pointed out.
I can only conjecture that it is perhaps a Braxin term of endearment, and she adopted it for various symbolic reasons to disorient her foes.
Reply#2 - email@example.com
Alas, there is no clean answer to how she knows it -- readers' imagination is such a wonderful thing to inspire -- but it does show up in a former scene.
She actually has a dream, as I recall while on the ice-plains of Derleth, which pretty much mirrors the scene that actually occurred with Harkur.
If you believe in racial memory, an odd but interesting theory, you could say that it was an actual fragment of the past surfacing in her unconscious.
Or you could say that with her background (parents obsessed with Braxin culture) and their knowing more of the language than most Braxins did,
it might have been a construct of shreds of images picked up unconsciously while she was a child, a kind of reassurance filtered
through the mythos of the culture she grew up hearing about. Also her whole life was obsessed with the Braxins, so it was natural she would
dream in that venue sometimes. Since she was more Braxin than Azean by nature, you might also argue that unconsiously she knew this, and used
Braxin imagery in dreams to symbolize the comfort of being accepted. Which is of course what the dream is all about.
Or you could allude to the advice of one best selling author (I forget which one,unfortunately ) who said that every author is allowed one unexplained coincidence per book. :-)
But anyway, while there is no certain answer where the dream came from, her use of the name came from that dream.
Reply#1 - firstname.lastname@example.org
I don't believe so. We have several pieces to go on:
Zatar: "What does she need?"
Feran: "Consummation of a self-hatred so intense that all the Probes in the institute couldn't alter it."
(Above from page 453 (paperback), below page 454)
Zatar: "And what if that hatred were consummated?"
Feran: "But that would take the destruction of Braxi-of you-of herself..."
And lastly, from page 478
Anzha: "But to kill you, to defy my conditioning outright, that I can't do."
But what she *does* is not kill him outright (like shooting him), but indirectly (like giving him cancer). I think that, in conjunction with identifying the psychics as her people instead of the Braxi, would free her from the original programming (esp that Pazua is dead, per Feran).
Reply#2 - Rlmarler@aol.com
Some added contradictions:
"...We made our peace, so I can't take full credit. He (Feran) undid what he
could of his early work within my mind, and gave me the key to deal with the
rest; that freed him from the builk of his guilt. You may therefore take
credit for his suicide."
He undid what he could... Was she free, then? Had the sexual traps been
removed from her psyche, that a man might indulge in her pleasure without
risk of death?
"I'm not a Probe, so I can't do it cleanly; any contact we have will be
tainted by my experience. But he (Feran) set the patterns in my mind, and
showed me how to work them. ..... To fulfill my conditioning - which will
give me my freedom."
"Conditioning can't be undone," she gasps.
There is a sadness in his (Feran's) mind. --- Institute propaganda. I can
negate my original work; it will require th last of my strength, but it can
be done. As for the rest, you must deal with that yourself. A lifetime of
habit has reinforced the patterns I set into your mind. You must deal with
that directly -- satisfy the conditions of your programming, in other words,
and then you will be free of it."
My feeling is that she, with time, can overcome her conditioning. and by
giving Zatar his psychic abilties she fulfilled (in her mind) what was
necessary for the fulfillment of her original "race."
Reply#3 - Jdoherty@opic.gov
I think she is free. At the end of the book we don't know for certain that Zatar is going to die. Throughout the book Zatar has shown a
remarkable ability to defy tradition without consequence. He has also shown an ability to counter-act the usefulness of telepathy and second-guess the
thought processes of psychics, prior to becoming a telepath. As long as he was given the time to master his new talent, I don't believe he would be
easily defeated. The key is how Zatar will deal with the new talent and its' side effects.
What would it do to Braxi, to have an involuntary psychic for a ruler? What would it mean to that nation of hedonists that their figurehead denied
himself sexual contact? And what would happen to his House, whose very structure was founded upon sexual intimacy?
You have destroyed me, my enemy.
(Page 490, paperback)
At the end of the book it is clear that Zatar feels defeated, but that is
where it ends. I find it difficult to believe that someone that powerful in
fact and in personality would be so easily discouraged. So I can't go along
with the idea that she has outright defied her conditioning by contributing
to his demise. Feran had already told her that with li Pazua gone and no
Institute in existence, any conditioning dependant on those two entities
became invalidated, so bearing a Braxin child is not an issue. However,
Anzha does have the Azean codes that dictate the pairbonding instinct, and
so becoming a part of Braxin culture and mating with Zatar is something that
emotionally she can't accept. I've always felt that she offered the talent
as a chance to support and accept the culture as her own without actually
having to stay and become a part of it.
Li Pazua is dead; Zatar killed him in your name. The Institute is gone and
the psychics are scattered. Any part of your conditioning that depended
upon him is now invalidated. You need fear no sudden surge of maternal
instinct ... as long as there is no Institute, that part of the conditioning
will remain inoperative.
"I'm Azean, Zatar, enough to give that special meaning. Tau checked the
codes, and they're all there. Any intimacy would bind me to you in ways
that you can't imagine, ways I can't accept. Already - "
She stopped herself, and he thought he saw the promise of tears. "There's
an alternative," she said hesitantly. "I wasn't sure whether I would offer
it, but it seems to suit both our purposes."
Shaken, she withdrew her thoughts from that foreign arena and limited them
to the confines of her body. She was afraid to try again. What did it
mean, that the thoughts which drew her were not those of ambition thwarted,
but of pairbonding shattered? She had lived with her obsession for so long
that she had ceased to analyze it. Azeans paired for life; was it possible
that she had done that? Had that one Azean instinct bred true in her after
all? Hasha, if that were the case....
(Page 383 - 384)
I believe that she was freed from her conditioning. By undoing his original
work, Feran has given her a chance to explore many avenues and allow her an
opportunity to forge her own future. But by removing that mental surgery
that enabled them to save a catatonic child, also removes those crutches
that enabled her to survive the trauma of her early childhood. Being freed
from her conditioning may not have freed her from her self-hate & guilt.
Feran told her that the only thing that would get in the way of that freedom
would be a lifetime of experience and habit that reinforced his original
work. But I believe that it is that same lifetime of experience that would
give her the strength to face the self-hate and guilt to build a new life.
By facing Zatar, her fathers' assassin and the ruler of her people, and
giving him this new telepathic talent, she closed the door on that section
of her life. She freed herself from her conditioning by giving Zatar a
power that could strengthen and continue his power, but because it was
tainted by her experience, she would give him such pain and suffering that
her need to strike back at her fathers' assassin would be fulfilled.
I can give you immortality, Zatar - by guaranteeing the strength of your
dynasty. By giving you such insight that you'll be able to negate Azea's
psychic advantage. I can even give you the key to discovering whatever
power remains among your own people - while showing you such pain that
you'll regret this meeting for the rest of your life. I can make you a
ruler, Zatar, such as no ruler has ever been! - and I can and will cause you
such suffering that at last my hunger for vengeance will be satisfied.
(Page 479 - 480)
In the end Anzha is gone without another word and we don't know where she
will go or do. But it seems to me that being freed from her conditioning
and at last having some closure to the deaths of her parents, she has the
chance to move forward and make a new and better life.
Just my thoughts on the matter! Thanks for listening!