This is topic Not Just a Contradiction - A Major Issue in How Ender Thinks from Exile to Speaker in forum Discussions About Orson Scott Card at Hatrack River Forum.

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Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
I've brought this up before, in a Shadows in Flight thread, but it's been many months and I think this is a subject well worth debating a bit further.

In a nutshell the problem is this: the Ender at the end of Ender in Exile knows more than the Ender at the beginning of Speaker. That's only natural, because OSC wrote them so many years apart, but it brings about problems deeper than mere continuity (and the Shadow and Ender series have so many of those already).

1.) Between Speaker and Xenocide Ender lives in Lusitania for thirty years. When the characters from Lusitania finally meet Bean and his children (in some way or another) in Shadows Alive how will it be conceivable that Ender hasn't spoken of Bean, his children, Arkanian, etc. to Grego, Olhado, Jane, etc. in 30 years? And if he had spoken of them, why had no character acknowledged any of it IN Xenocide or CotM, especially when the situations they were faced with drew so many parallels (genetic brilliance, political intrigue, etc.)

2.) As we were privy to Ender's thoughts throughout the entire quartet, why did Ender himself never think of Bean or the events of the Shadow wars? Seeing as he wrote The Hegemon, he must've known all those events - and the only reason he doesn't is that OSC didn't know them himself at the time of writing Speaker.

3.) OSC's standard answer of "imagine the continuity errors as different retellings of the same event being slightly different, like in real life" doesn't apply because: a.) We're in Ender's head, there's only one point of view and b.) the knowledge Ender is missing from Exile to Speaker would directly change the way he acts, reacts and thinks. They handle such similar problems (specially in Xenocide and COtM) it's inconceivable he never one thinks of Bean, his genetic condition, etc.

4.) Furthermore, if Ender knows Bean is flying around the universe, why does he never stop to look him up or wonder if he's still alive? Through the contact with Arkanian he should know all this, and OSC even goes out of his way to show us Bean still thinks of Ender in the second chapter of Shadows in Flight.

5.) What happens to Arkanian? Does he just die? Why doesn't he do as his father did and live in space or go with Ender? Why does Ender never even remember him, yet he remembers random events that happened in that one korea-like-planet?

6.) What I think will happen: when Mr. Card finally comes out with Shadows Alive, it's going to be a very difficult book for continuity. And I think he will sidestep that difficulty by simply ignoring the continuity problems, the changes between the characters and sort of "force" them together. He's a wonderful writer, so I think he'll pull it off, but the story could be much, much richer.

7.) This isn't nitpicking: It isn't about the direction they're walking in or how long something lasts (although it would be awesome if the timelines actually made sense in a revised edition). Or details like Ferreira being a traitor in SP and then being a trusted collaborator out of thin air in SotG. It's about what the characters think, feel and how they react to things. In essence, it would be a vastly different Speaker, Xenocide and CotM. They would be different books, and the classic originals would remain incredible (but different) books in their own right.

8.) What I think should happen: So, what I'm saying is one day, when Card literally has nothing else to do, that he revisit the entire series to make it internally coherent. Not CHANGE it, mind you, simply, make an alternate version. Revisit the entire saga, make it a whole again from the organic (beautiful) mess it has become. Think of it like gardening, not re-writing. I think it can co-exist with all the previous versions that are already excellent stories (like the original chapter 15 of Ender's Game, the original short story that spawned the book, etc. co-exist with everything else). I don't think he'll do it though, because it would mean retouching perfectly good work for the sake of what he might see as "details", and what I've labored to prove are not so.

9.) That's what I thought should happen a few months ago. Now I think there might be another solution: amnesia. It's right out of a Soap Opera script, but that might be an interesting challenge: can anyone think of a logical way to reconcile the Ender from Exile with the one from Speaker without rewriting anything? Adding some new information that makes you go: Oh! that's why he completely forgot Bean and the details of the wars he knew so well he wrote a book about (not to mention read his sister's very detailed historical accounts of).

In my head, the original quartet and the Shadow series (including Exile and the short stories) simply exist on different timelines, like parallel universes. That's cool and the Gang; My big beef is with mixing both those universes in Shadows Alive - it would start to feel like crossover fan fiction, like Harry Potter meeting Frodo or something.

So, fellow hatrackers, thoughts? Anyone offer solutions? Is nobody else as bothered by this as I am?
Posted by millernumber1 (Member # 9894) on :
1.) I'd say that Ender tries extremely hard not to burden those around him with the knowledge of his history. Yes, his family knows, but he doesn't talk much about his own actions during the Formic Wars, so why should he talk much about his companions, who are all thousands of years dead?

2.) The thoughts are a more serious point, but I'd say he's tried to divorce his own history from himself - except for the guilt.

3.) No real question, I think.

4.) I didn't think Ender did know Bean's still alive.

5.) I thought it was implied that he just died, living on the planet with his mother, but in contact with Petra.

6.) Well, for me, Shadows Alive should be a story about Bean's children, Jane and Miro, and Peter and Wang Mu. So I'm not as bothered (especially since Bean and Ender will both be, you know, not alive). Valentine's memories might be a bit of a problem, though.

7.) Don't remember the details enough.

8.) I think the point of the Ender's companion was to help with this issue - since Card sensibly doesn't want to have to reread his own work (that's always painful, even if it was good work).

9.) nothing here.

My own continuity problem is the Peter reading the Hegemon problem in Ender in Exile, when Shadows of the Giant clearly says he did no such thing. But since I prefer the new version, I'm okay with it.

I just hope the movie doesn't introduce horrible contradictions with the book (like Ender having a crush on Petra...ugh).

Since my favorite characters are Bean and Jane, I myself think Shadows Alive (if Card ever figures out what should happen in it) is one of my dream books. No crossover problems here! Besides, I thought he did a fine job crossing the two universes in Ender in Exile (even with the continuity problems).
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
1.) Even if he doesn't want to burden OTHERS with the knowledge, why doesn't he think of it himself? We literally listen to his thoughts, how does such a genius as himself not see the parallelisms between Qing Jao's problems and Bean's (the whole genetic experiment/genius thing)? Also, what happened to Bean directly affects what could happen to Qing Jao or what could be done about any of the other myriad of genetic problems in Xenocide. It's not just "anecdotes" that he wouldn't want to trouble people with, it's incredibly useful and important information that he withholds for no good reason (besides the author not having thought up of it yet). Also, even if you made the argument that he didn't divulge the information during a time of crisis, is it really believable that in thirty years of raising these kids he would never tell them about how he grew up and the people he grew up with? And on top of that, it's all a matter of public record. How do you write The Hegemon without including Bean and Petra? Why doesn't anyone in the Hundred Worlds read Valentine's recounting of the Formic Wars or the Shadow Wars? Everyone on Lusitania and Path should know about the protagonists in the Shadow Wars simply because they're such iconic historic figures. It's like people today (and not just any people, geniuses) flat out not knowing who Grant was. So when they meet with Bean, or Bean's children, they'll HAVE to know about him - and since Ender knows about the genetic condition, it's very difficult to believe he would never draw parallels from the past to his present.

2.) He'd try to divorce emotions, but he's not stupid. The information was useful, and the fact that it didn't even come to mind is suspect.

3.) So, we agree?

4.) I think you may be right. Anyone care to clear this point up?

5.) I don't understand why he would just die on the planet with his mother, though. Nothing in his personality suggested it, and being Bean's kid he should have an acute survival instinct, no? He really doesn't want to die at Ender's hands, and has to convince himself into it thinking it's for the good of humanity. What motive could he possibly have for just letting himself lay down and die like you're suggesting? Isn't it more likely he did as Bean did and is floating around in space? And why does Ender not care/follow up on/try to take care of him?

6.) And Peter's memories, seeing as how he should know everything Real Peter told Ender and things Ender just knew on his own. Also, why on earth does nothing from all the political intriguing in the Shadow series ring a bell in Fake Peter's head during CotM? The real reason is OSC hadn't written the Shadow series, but in continuity with the story it's very hard to justify, specially when you throw in little tidbits of stuff he does remember which is much, much more irrelevant (random stuff Ender did on random planets).

7.) I'm just saying, let's have more than one time stream and be done with it. Many fictional multiverses have it, specially in comic books. Continuity 1: the original short story. Continuity 2: the original quartet.
Continuity 3: The Shadow Series + Ender's game with revised chapter 15 + the short stories + some version of the Lusitania books not yet written.

8.) I agree that OSC won't do it, but like I said, this isn't about small issues. These are issues that would change the action, direction and intention of entire characters over the three Lusitania books. A "companion" couldn't possibly wrinkle out those problems (as it could do with smaller continuity issues).

9.) I still suggest amnesia. Sharp blow to the head before Lusitania and Ender thinks Bean is just a legume.

The movie should, of course, have its own continuity.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
I wish my ideas were clearer so I wasn't so insanely repetitive. I apologize for that. Also, it's late and I'm sleepy (4:24 AM where I am).
Posted by millernumber1 (Member # 9894) on :
1.) For the same reason I try to forget the times I said incredibly stupid things in front of large groups of people? I think that we tend to try to avoid thinking of things we feel really badly about - and Ender definitely feels incredibly guilty and painful about the entire Battle School experience. Having read the entire nine-book series multiple times in many orders, I can't say that the absence of Battle School thoughts jarred me. I mean, Card did have the relationships with Alai and Petra fairly strongly developed in the original novel, so I see no reason why the absence of their mention is anything other than a conscious choice on Card's part.

In terms of Path vs. Anton's Key, there's a distinct difference in what was done. In Anton's Key, intelligence is directly manipulated and enhanced. On Path, it's merely paired with OCD, not directly altered. There's eugenics involved, but it's societal, not genetic engineering on a molecular level. So I think the lack of discussion of Anton's Key in the Path virus discussions is perfectly legitimate.

While it is public record who was in Battle School, again, Petra and Alai (and Bean, but in a different form) already existed in the universe when the Speaker trilogy was written. I don't think their mention made much sense, given how much time had passed, and especially since Ender's identity itself was a carefully guarded secret. Everyone knew The Xenocide, but no one seemed to be very clear on what exactly happened. Similar to the way we perceive historical figures like Jesus and Julius Caesar, we may know some events and a few figures surrounding them, but we're not really up on their details and personal lives.

Also, I think people don't read Val's histories for the same reason I don't read the Gallic Wars or Herodotus: because they aren't that interesting, and TV and movies are. :-)

2.) I dunno - again, Petra and Alai are definitely existant before the Speaker series, and I think Card made a definite choice not to involve them. So excising Bean makes just as much sense - which may not be much to you, but I don't think it's a retcon or Shadow series problem.

3.) No, I don't think we agree, I'm just not sure that you have an actual question to answer here.

5.) I think he'd die with his mother because she needed him. That was the thing that showed Ender Arkanian isn't evil, remember? There's nothing Ender could do for him, and honestly, at his stage, sending him into space wouldn't be a big help. Babies, yes. A 14-16 year old? Not so much. Also, I think "Mazer in Prison" shows how horrific solo spaceflight is. That's not saving someone, it's merely torturing them until they die. Bean's a survivor, but he's also a complete realist - which is why he divorces Petra.

6.) Peter's memories are from before his conquest - he's a construct, not the real Peter, and from Shadow of the Hegemon era, not Shadow of the Giant era. Also, they're not really his memories - they're Ender's horrified imaginings of what his memories should have been.

7.) I don't think multiple timelines are very much fun, honestly. One of the big reasons I'm mad at DC Comics right now. Also, the only serious problem I have with the timelines is the handling of Peter and his reading The Hegemon, as I mentioned above.

Er, I really hope the movie doesn't have a continuity as screwed up as that. I mean, yes, things will be different, but do they have to be stupid in their difference? OSC has said many times that he hated the excision of the Scouring of the Shire from LotR, and I think the kind of change I mentioned above would be on the same level.

And there's a big difference between just leaving something out and having something directly contradict it.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
1.) I don't talk about Battle School thoughts, those are thoughts that could've been derived from the original Ender's Game, and since OSC had the material at hand it's fine that he chose not to go back to it - those relationships were finished. However, Shadow-era thoughts and events are directly relevant to the events that happen in the Speaker trilogy. If you don't see that they are, or don't agree that they are, then I guess I won't ever be able to convince you. But just as food for thought, your argument that the OCD on Path is not "genetic engineering on a molecular level" is wrong simply because they explicitly say that they DID engineer the molecules in a lab - with research that clearly co-relates to the research related to Anton's key. Furthermore, a huge chunk of Xenocide revolves around genetic engineering on a molecular level. Why would someone like Ella not research Bean's case, when it was a perpetually funded study that went on for hundreds of years and has direct effect on the things she studies? And if somehow those studies were lost over time, why did Ender himself not bring it up? He always does everything in his power to help those around him, there's no real substantial reason why he would just sidestep that. It's not just avoiding talking about interesting anecdotes (although in THIRTY YEARS I think that would come up too), it's directly hiding information that's hindering the investigation on Lusitania and Path. He must have a good reason and if OSC won't re-write anything, which is fine, he should at least address the problem. Not bringing up Alai, Petra or any other relationship from Ender's Game is fine, because none of those situations paralleled what happened in the Speaker series - however the genetics and political maneuvering from the Shadow series would've proven invaluable experience in Xenocide and CotM - and it doesn't make sense that Ender (or young Peter) would not think of any of those situations and have that information at hand.

Again, maybe you wouldn't read Val's histories, but most of the people in the Speaker series are cultured geniuses. At least Valentine herself would know. And Ender.

2.) Same as before, it's not about the emotional connections (Alai, Petra) or the people themselves (Bean) it's case studies and situations that directly affected what they were doing. If a friend of yours had a problem which he explained to you about in detail, including how he solved it, and ten years later you had a similar problem, wouldn't you draw from the experience of that first problem and share that experience with those around you to try to fix it? And don't tell me you'd forget about your friend's problem, because this isn't a small issue, it's a problem of cataclysmic proportions both times.

3.) I'm making a statement: the standard answer of "different points of view on the same facts make the retelling of those facts different" doesn't apply here. I think the handling of Peter having or having not read the Hegemon before dying does work with that standard answer, though. I assume then, that you think my larger point on the Shadows series also can be blown off with the same answer. We agree to disagree?

5.) Bean was older than Arkanian when he decided to embark on the journey. Sure, he did it for the babies and without them he would've died happily in Petra's arms. You present a plausible scenario, and while I don't think the character really showed (to me) that he would act that way, it's quite conceivable that he would. It's not a continuity error.

6.) Young Peter's memories should include everything Ender knows at that point (or a random selection of everything Ender knows, not selectively taking out a huge swath), not just stuff about Peter from before his conquest. I have no idea where you get that the memories would be from SotH era, from Ender's perspective all the Shadow series happened linearly and he found out about it all at once. Young Peter exists from Ender's knowledge of Peter and Ender's knowledge of Peter at that time includes the entire Shadow saga because he's the man who wrote the Hegemon and has read all of Valentine's histories and explicitly says he knows about the whole ordeal in Exile. He's made up of Ender's vision of the Real Peter as an adult AND of evil Peter as a child. It's why YP is able to do so well in his political maneuverings, because he starts to tap into that knowledge. I quote from CotM:

" "That's just part of my cruelty. To torment you with conversation. But maybe it's supposed to go farther than that. Maybe I'm supposed to torture you and kill you the way I so clearly remember doing with squirrels. Maybe I'm supposed to stake your living body out in the woods, nailing your extremities to tree roots, and then open you up layer by layer to see at what point the flies begin to come and lay eggs in your exposed flesh." She recoiled at the image. "I have read the book. I know the Hegemon was not a monster!" "It wasn't the Speaker for the Dead who created me Outside. It was the frightened boy Ender. I'm not the Peter Wiggin he so wisely understood in that book. I'm the Peter Wiggin he had nightmares about. The one who flayed squirrels." "He saw you do that?" she asked. "Not me," he said testily. "And no, he never even saw him do it. Valentine told him later. She found the squirrel's body in the woods near their childhood home in Greensboro, North Carolina, on the continent of North America back on Earth. But that image fit so tidily into his nightmares that he borrowed it and shared it with me. That's the memory I live with. Intellectually, I can imagine that the real Peter Wiggin was probably not cruel at all. He was learning and studying. He didn't have compassion for the squirrel because he didn't sentimentalize it. It was simply an animal. No more important than a head of lettuce. To cut it up was probably as immoral an act as making a salad. But that's not how Ender imagined it, and so that's not how I remember it." "How do you remember it?" "The way I remember all my supposed memories. From the outside. Watching myself in horrified fascination as I take a fiendish delight in cruelty. All my memories prior to the moment I came to life on Ender's little voyage Outside, in all of them I see myself through someone else's eyes. A very odd feeling, I assure you.""

Even if all the memories are skewed from this perspective in which he sees him as a monster, wouldn't YP remember ordering Suriyawong to attack Virlomi and slaughter thousands of Indian soldiers (remember it as cruelly as possible?) And even if, for some reason beyond comprehension, Ender didn't give any memories to YP from the Shadow series, doesn't YP study Peter's real life in order to emulate what he did? Remember, that's the WHOLE POINT of CotM for Peter - that he has to emulate what the real Peter did. Why in the world would not draw from a single one of those experiences? (the Suriyawong thing is an example, obviously not the best parallel he could draw).

7.) I disagree, I love multiple timelines. Matter of taste, I guess.

I agree on the movie.

There is a big difference between leaving something out and directly contradicting something. However, if I tell you a character has the key to unlocking the secret to a big part of the plot in a story and never uses it, although he tries everything else, and I don't justify why he doesn't even bring it up, wouldn't that be a contradiction? Maybe it can be fixed with something he writes later and not with a re-write, but I insist it's an issue that should be addressed.
Posted by millernumber1 (Member # 9894) on :
1.) Well, clearly, we see the parallels and connections having different intensities. I don't see the connections being as important, and it makes sense to me that Ender would block out those times in his life. But I can see where you're coming from - I simply don't have the same emotional responses, and thus don't see the contradictions.

3.) We can certainly agree to differ, especially since I think the "different perspectives" is exactly the problem with the two Peter passages in Exile and Giant - they are both clearly from Peter's perspective, with no wiggle room or secondary intermediary perspective.

But fundamentally, I have no real problem, since I think they're both great stories.

6.) I still think there's a passage in either Xenocide or Children which states that Peter's supposed to be Ender's subconscious creation of his imaginary brother at a specific point in time, which I remember to be younger than his Hegemon days. Now, yes, Peter has more knowledge, because it's a subconscious creation, and these things are an exact science, but I don't really think there's evidence that he should have more knowledge (and specific personal relationship memories) from the Shadow series.

Of course, if I find that passage (or have it pointed out) and it clearly says "Oh, I'm Peter from after I conquered the world," then my memory is clearly garbage and you can disregard everything I say. Which, of course, you're free to do anyway. I don't think my interp is any better than yours - but it is mine, so I'm just stating the book how it affects me.

As for the idea that Peter studies real Peter, well, yes, but I think the fundamental issue with Card's philosophy of strategy is that it's different every time. Strategy (political or military) isn't Risk - it's not dice, with a fixed map that's the same every time. It's an infinitely, fractally complex situation which constantly changes, and so I think he has Peter use principles but not the same strategies, so the same memories wouldn't be important (and, of course, didn't exist at the time of Children).

7.) Indeed. One half the world cannot understand the pleasures of the other.

Again, I see your point, but I just don't see the urgency, or really, the connection between the events and characters you see. I don't mean to deny that reading validity, but it just doesn't bother me, and I've tried (badly, I'm sure) to explain why.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
No, you've explained yourself quite well. In fact, you've convinced me on quite a few points. It was a pleasure to debate with you.

Good day. [Smile]
Posted by millernumber1 (Member # 9894) on :
Thank you! A pleasure indeed.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
3.) I was re-reading SotG and I think the whole "Peter didn't read Hegemon" was told from Petra's perspective. She didn't think he ever read it, so she read it over his grave. Maybe he did read it and didn't want to tell Petra?

Dunno, just popped into my head.
Posted by BlueWizard (Member # 9389) on :
1.) & 2.) Ender Speaker about Bean to Lusitanians -

I don't see a conflict here. I think at the time you speaker of, Ender is about 50 years old at least, and he has a lot on his mind with the local virus problem and the impending arrival of a war fleet.

Next, while Ender is the Point of View Character, we don't see a 24 hours a day running dialog of his thoughts. We get bits and pieces as they relate to the plot at the moment. So, we can't say Ender did or didn't think of Bean.

Next, Ender spend 3,000 year of earth time running away from his past. I don't think that is a point in his life he wants to dwell on. Plus again, he is about age 50. I rarely to never think about my friends from high school. We've moved on. And I rarely to never speak of them, I've moved on. Now compound that with 3,000 years of passing time, and those people and countless decedents of those people are LONG dead. That part of his life is first ancient history, and also a part of his life that he is actively trying to forget.

He wants to be judge on who he is now, not on what happened in the ancient past. So, I very easily see why these old memories didn't come up.

Ender spends his time fixing the lives of other people, he does not really let other people into his life and personal problems, especially 3,000 year old problems.

3.) Card's excuses for seeming continuity errors -

It is not so much telling a story from different points of view as it is simply telling the story with emphasis on different aspects. Each person who witnesses an event recounts that event differently because different aspects are important to the individuals. But, in the retelling of the event, their mind wanders with their priorities to different aspects of the event. So different tellings by the same person come out differently.

I may recount an event from my point of view, then much later I may recount the event trying to imagine the point of view of other involved individuals. So, one person can tell a given story differently with each retelling.

When we were discussing possible continuity conflicts between the end of Ender's Game and the beginning of Ender in Exile, I point this out. First, we don't have a 100% accounting of time. A conversation between Val and Ender might have occurred at a specific time at the end of Ender's Game, but that does not mean another conversation between them could not have occurred at another time in the beginning of Ender in Exile.

In a sense, the end of Ender's Game was about making a decision, the beginning of Ender in Exile was about planning the implementation of that decision. Very different conversations, each telling a very different story of essentially the same story. So, variations can reasonable occur in the telling of a given time and place.

4.) Bean Flying Around -

Does Ender know this, and how did he find out? This occurred long after Ender left. And the recounting of The Hedgemon, is not the retelling of the Shadow series. It is the telling of Peter's life which would only tangentially mention Bean.

Plus the writing of the Hedgemon occurred near the end of Ender's stay on the first planet, unless my memory fails me. So, even more time had past.

Time is a key element here. By the time Val arrives on Lusitiana, Bean and all memories of him are long dead, and Ender is a somewhat ripe age 50 and with multiple crisis on his hands. Not a lot of time to reminisce.

As to Bean thinking about Ender, yes, because it has only been a couple of years. But for Ender, it has been countless decades.

5.) What happens to Arkanian? -

Why does that matter? This is not his story. Yes, something happened to him, but it doesn't matter. Again on the issue of Ender never thinking of Bean; in the meeting between Ender and Arkanian, Ender does think and speak of Bean. Just as Bean thinks of Ender. But so far, we only have the passing of a few years of earth time. Their memories of each other are fresh, and more than anything, circumstances bring up those memories.

Many Ender-years later, and countless earth years later, yes, Ender remembers his visit to the 'Korean-Planet', because for him that is a recent and relevant memory.

The technology that created the mutation of Bean is ancient by the Standard on Lusitania. But I think in the people of Path, we see some remnant of that technology refined into more modern science. But, I see no correlation between what happened to Bean, and what is happening on Lusitania and on Path. Those more recent events are far removed from Bean, and far more complex than what happened to him. The "Bean Science" is already incorporated in the the genetic science that they are using. So Bean himself is not relevant.

6.) Shadows Alive -

I don't see as many conflicts in the story line as you seem to see. Yes, integrating new stories into old is always a problem. But for the most part Shadows Alive is something of a whole new series. This is not the continuing story of Ender, but the continuing story of new-Peter.

Which bring up another point. New-Peter does not have all of Ender's old memories. I think more likely he intuitively or subconsciously has some of Ender's knowledge, and he may be able to pull some of it from his subconscious from time to time, but it will lead him to act instinctively and not based on conscious text book knowledge. New-Peter is NOT a walking encyclopedia of "Ender".

Personally, I think the Beanie Babies discover New-Peter, and not the other way around.

7.)'nitpicking' -

Yes, characters are going to react vastly different between the end of the full Ender Series and the beginning of Shadows Alive, because in that time many many things have happened. Ender is dead. They beat the virus. They stopped the fleet. New-Peter is married. Years may have past before the Beanie Babies (Bean's Kids) finally arrive in Lusitania.

Also keep in mind, the people on Lusitania have Faster than Light Travel. They can be anywhere in the 100 Planets and Territories in the blink of an eye. They can have breakfast on one planet and lunch on another. It is very possible New-Peter will encounter the Beanie Babies on another planet. We don't know. But, Peter and his friends are not tied to the planet Lusitania. Their world will have expanded significantly by the time the Beanie Babies show up.

While there will be some historical references in the new Shadows Alive book, I think it will focus more on the problems of the moment rather than spending chapter after chapter reliving the past.

8.) Making Changes to the Books -

Personally, I don't think so. Card was seriously thinking about doing this; rewriting the ending of Ender's Game to make it more consistent with the beginning of Ender in Exile. I pointed out, for the most part that wasn't necessary.

Again, with the example of the conversation between Ender and Val. That represents one small moment in time. There were plenty of other moments in time for other conversations to occur with Val and many other people. Another different conversation does not invalidate the original conversation. It was not necessary for the ending of Ender's Game to precisely match the beginning of Ender in Exile.

9.) Amnesia -

No I don't think so. Again 3,000 year or 50 year depending on perspective have passed. That ancient past is gone from Ender's Memory, just as my life at age 15 has been set aside.

Ender doesn't need amnesia to forget about Bean, because for the most part, Ender has forgotten about Bean, someone that Ender has assumed is long dead.

Harry Potter Meets Frodo -

I disagree with this to. I don't see the inconsistencies you see. Not every detail has to match, because from different perspectives different details matter. And no account of a given event or character includes 100% of the passing of time. Even if the change in perspective is really just a change in the attitude of a single character.

Certainly, a lot of thought will have to be given to making Shadows Alive consistent, and when the time comes, Card may start a thread to deal with some of those consistencies they way he did with Ender in Exile. But, again, I just don't see the inconsistencies that you are seeing.

Just a few thoughts.

Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
I guess it all boils down to this:

Either you agree that the situations in the Speaker series mirror those in the Shadow series enough that they should come to Ender's mind or you don't. That Ender knows about them is no question, except maybe for Bean flying around in space. I do, most of you guys don't. I guess I'll find out when I read Shadows Alive and Shadows in Flight whether they really bother me or not.

Although I'll part with this:

Though it's not a continuity error per se, it's strange to me that Ender would never talk about his experiences and his friends in thirty years of raising Grego, Ela, Olhado, Quim and Quara. At least the people in the Speaker series should know OF Bean, so when they meet the Beanie Babies (love the term, did you coin it?) their reaction should be: ooooh, so you're Arkanian's brothers and sisters (or the kids of Bean, or whatever).

What would bother me quite a bit is if they showed up and the Speaker characters went: Bean? What? How? Weeeeeeird.

Also, does anyone care to discuss the moral implications that going Outside has in that it makes you immortal? If there is a thread on this, would either of you mind pointing me to it? (I'm specially thinking of the Beanie Babies and how Outside is obviously A cure (maybe not the one Card decides to use) for their ailment.
Posted by millernumber1 (Member # 9894) on :
Hum - I didn't think of the immortality thing and the cure. That is a very interesting idea - my guess is if Card goes with that, there will be a choice.

Also, that certainly jives with the interest in prolonging life through stasis and FTL.
Posted by The Rabbit (Member # 671) on :
Either you agree that the situations in the Speaker series mirror those in the Shadow series enough that they should come to Ender's mind or you don't.
These are quite far from the only two options. The fact that the story is being told from Ender's point of view does not mean we have privy to his every thought. We never see Ender think about his nose itching or his feet hurting or wondering what the weather will be like tomorrow or a thousand other things that are likely to have crossed his mind. There is no reason to conclude Ender never thought about Bean. At most what we know is that his memories of Bean didn't play an important role in his life or his choices.

Adults don't usually spend that much of their lives thinking about childhood companions that they haven't seen in decades. Even when you have shared life altering experiences with someone, they won't necessarily occupy your thoughts for the rest of your life.

Its pretty common for people not to recognize the similarity between different events in their lives. In fact, I'd say people rarely recognize those similarities while they are in the midst of a problem. That's the kind of thing we see only when we have the luxury of reflection after the crisis is over.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
Hi Rabbit,

Here you're making two distinct arguments that respond to two different situations. You say that:

There is no reason to conclude Ender never thought about Bean. At most what we know is that his memories of Bean didn't play an important role in his life or his choices.
So I interpret that as:

A.) Ender didn't necessarily not think of Bean, we're just not privy to it.

Then you say:

Adults don't usually spend that much of their lives thinking about childhood companions that they haven't seen in decades. Even when you have shared life altering experiences with someone, they won't necessarily occupy your thoughts for the rest of your life.
And I interpret that as:

B.) Even if he didn't think of Bean, that's alright because adults don't spend that much of their lives thinking about childhood companions.

My response:

A.) I think this is impossible. Ender thinking of Bean, in this context, would've shaped his life and his choices. Why would he think of Bean, remember what he knows about him and then NOT share that with Ella (as far as genetics are concerned)? Why would he not share how Peter unified the world with Young Peter, or Han, or someone? Why would Old Val not say something about the history that unfolds in Shadow, the way she constantly uses "real" history to punctuate her points? If Ender never thought of Bean, fine, he never thought of Bean even once - I'll address the problem with that later. If Ender DID think of Bean though, we should've been privy to it, as he should've mentioned it in conversation with SOMEONE (because of all the parallels I've drawn above, not just because he was reminiscing). Ender noticing the parallels in genetics and politics and then NOT sharing it, when the situation was so critical, would've meant he was actively hiding it. If so, why?

B.) I think this is also impossible, or at the very least, very, very unlikely. If somebody lives for thirty years with a group of people, how likely is it that he'll never bring up anything about how he grew up? Specially to draw from that in the form of lessons to the children he's raising. All the adults I knew growing up were constantly talking about their lives before I was born - because that's where they have to draw from. Ender inexplicably has experiences and knowledge in Exile that he doesn't have in Speaker. Fine, you say, he could've talked about it (besides the characters reading a lot of it from history books on their own) but that doesn't mean we were privy to those conversations. Well, those conversations should've affected what happened in the Speaker series. So, it does boil down to either you see, and agree with, the parallels or not. Some valid points arguing against those parallels being there have been that the technology used for genetically engineering Bean must've been ancient by the time the events on Path. Even if that's true, wouldn't Ender take a moment to mourn his friend who wasn't saved by that new technology? Bean dies a tragic death in Ender's eyes, not just a gradual fading away. Bean means a LOT to Ender in Exile, yet in Xenocide he doesn't even matter enough to take a moment to think of (as his tragically late cure is found)? If you had a very close friend who died of AIDS, would you not remember him if in your lifetime the cure to AIDS was discovered? Aside from the emotional point though, these are geniuses of the highest calibre. If I could see the parallels, of course they could too. The whole point of how intelligent they are is that they connect ideas (even very old ones) at lighting fast speeds. If they don't see the parallels there must be a very good reason for that: forgetting information (through some trauma), some reason why the parallels are irrelevant, etc.


Here's another way to see it: The Ender in Exile knows more than the Ender in Speaker and that should be addressed. If you were reading the books (from EG through Shadow to CotM) for the first time in chronological order, wouldn't you expect Ender to know the things he learns in Exile later? Why would you be left hanging about those themes? Wouldn't you expect that the casual history mentions OSC throws in there to have some relation to what you read earlier on? Wouldn't you feel that something was left out in Speaker, a book that constantly talks about history and its impact (and not a single throwback to Shadow series)? Wouldn't you find it weird that all this talk about genetics and Bean never pops into Ender's mind? In Exile they're constantly referencing things in the Shadow series, because that's the natural progression of how to write that story. Yes, it's much closer in time than Speaker, but Speaker is less than a decade after Exile (in Ender's subjective time). Even the "wanting to block everything out" theory sounds inconsistent when you realize that Old Val, a HISTORIAN, should know and reference the things in Shadow at some point. Why? Because that's OSC's style. They reference OTHER historical things all the time, the only reason they don't reference the Shadow stuff is because OSC hadn't made it up yet.

Can anyone think of a good reason (story wise) why there is not a single connection from Shadow to Speaker series? Or, better question, does anyone honestly think that if OSC had written them in order he would've left those connections out? They're necessary, and their absence splits (in my opinion) both Speaker series and Shadow series into different timelines. Unless they're re-written or addressed somehow in the future books they will remain an inconsistency - and a terrible one when you try to mix two timelines that don't really match! So far the only book to really begin to mix them has been Exile, and to me that generated most of the problems in the first place.

Shadows Alive might have a conversation or situation set in the time of Xenocide or Speaker or something that we didn't see the first time. Rewrite is not the only solution, but so far nobody agrees there is a problem. I'll keep laboring to maybe change your minds.
Posted by Jeorge (Member # 11524) on :
This thread confused me right off the bat, with this statement: "When the characters from Lusitania finally meet Bean and his children (in some way or another) in Shadows Alive how will it be conceivable that Ender hasn't spoken of Bean, his children, Arkanian, etc. to Grego, Olhado, Jane, etc. in 30 years?"

Has anyone read Shadows Alive? I thought it wasn't even written yet? Why are we assuming that the Lusitanians know nothing of Bean?
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
Jeorge: I'm assuming that because if they did know about Bean, I feel that it should've had an impact on Xenocide and CotM.

But mostly I'm just pointing out a possible problem in Shadows Alive. I feel they should know about Bean, and that Shadows Alive should somehow address things in the Xenocide/CotM timeline to explain why he was never mentioned in those books.

Again, rewritting the Speaker series is not necesarilly the only solution to the problem I'm pointing out. A good connector in Shadows Alive might have it all make sense, so as Jeorge says, we're just talking hypotheticals.

I'm only trying to convince everyone that this IS an issue, while most think it is not.
Posted by Jeorge (Member # 11524) on :
Yeah, I'm just not seeing an issue here.
Posted by la.SOMA (Member # 10608) on :
I don't see a lot of this as even a minor issue - let alone a major one. If Ender never mentioned Bean, I'd simply assume that he was protecting his former jeesh member.

I've seen a lot of people speculate that Bean's condition could have something to do with the people of Path - if this were true, it could be that the people that discovered a cure for Bean also gave the people of Path their genius/OCD. IF that were the case, Starways Congress might not want Bean around to throw a wrench in the works of their plans. It could be that Starways has the cure and has summoned Bean and his kids but Jane/Ender alerted them to not return.

Deception is a common theme in the Ender/Shadow series - It wouldn't seem out of character if Ender chose to not mention Bean during his time on Lusitania.

I think that Jane/New!Peter will (in a snarky way) introduce Bean's children to Miro and the rest of the Lusitania crew. A sort of "oh yeah.. so here's Bean's children. Ender protected them despite the fact that knowledge of their condition/existence might have helped us in more than a few ways."

I just don't see how thoughts of Bean could fit anywhere into the Speaker series. Is Ender supposed to occasionally think to himself "I sure wish Bean were here.. he was always handy when I felt like giving up. I sure hope that, by some freak chance, he'll wind up meeting me here again since I'm privy to the fact that he's floating around space with his offspring."

I think as long as Shadows Alive doesnt directly contradict the entire Speaker series then there's nothing to worry about. I'm sure Bean's children will shed tons of light on everything that happened bewteen Exile/Shadows in Flight/Shadows Alive.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
No, he shouldn't think "oh, I sure wish he were here", but at least remember him to mourn him.

Now, if this happens:

I think that Jane/New!Peter will (in a snarky way) introduce Bean's children to Miro and the rest of the Lusitania crew. A sort of "oh yeah.. so here's Bean's children. Ender protected them despite the fact that knowledge of their condition/existence might have helped us in more than a few ways."

Then it certainly WOULD be addressing the problem I'm bringing up - and it'd be addressing it in a very satisfactory way. I like this solution a lot, I hope it turns out that way too.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
Oh, and I just realised, even if Ender doesn't know about the Beanie Babies flying through space - Jane certainly does. In fact, she could have full communication with them and access to all their files through their ansible connection. So it's even more weird that they're not brought up, unless Soma's solution is used (that they were being hidden for a reason).

Keep in mind that the cure to their genetic condition has already been found in Xenocide. It's simply going Outside holding in their aiua the form that they want to take. Even if that doesn't work, it can't be harder for Ella to make a cure than it was for her to make the recolada.

Either way, once the cure is found, it should be Jane herself that calls them back.

Now, Jane knowing of them and how to cure them, you can't tell me it wouldn't be out of character for her to just forget them. (And in fact makes more sense to me that they should've been re-introduced at the beginning of CotM, because why would she risk her death before giving them a chance at life? She was too busy with the events of CotM and didn't think to have on their team three of the most brilliant people in the universe? Come on.)

There should be conversations between Jane and the Beanie Babies to clear all this up. Kinda like what Soma said. I liked his/her solution a lot. Right on.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
(for those who've read the first two chapters of Shadows in Flight):

Interesing reason why Jane would decide not to include the Beanie Babies in the affairs of CotM:

Cincinnatus is too dangerous. She doesn't him trying to conquer everyone. Then again, with FTLT, she could just take Bella and Ender and leave him behind. Food for thought.
Posted by Vasslia Cora (Member # 7981) on :
I would think that while Jane could contact them, she never really looked into it, they were just another ansible to her. If they weren't part of ender's attention they wouldn't have been important to Jane.

One thing that I've always noticed when reading through CoTM, (I think it's in that book) when Jane announces that she transported every starship currently traveling to it's destination using FTLT, would that have affected bean's ship? maybe when that happened they were taken out of Near-lightspeed travel, prompting them to see what happened, gets janes attention who could maybe now make a cure because of the effects of going "outside" for FTLT, and sparks the next events.

Or maybe I'm completely wrong and remembering the books wrong too.
Posted by la.SOMA (Member # 10608) on :
I'm not certain where Ender is during the first two chapters of Shadows in Flight - I didnt take the time to do the math. Bean mentions that he has kept track of Ender over time, though. I feel like toward the end of the book, Bean will see that Ender is on Lusitania with the Xenobiologists and then begin their flight to Lusitania. I think that's only logical - unless the timelines aren't matching up right.. then the next logical step is to have Jane FTLT them to Lusitania.

I think OSC has stated that he doesnt want popping outside to be a solution for everything and I sort of hope that it isn't the solution to Anton's Key. Since I think Bean's Children will still be young enough (and Bean presumably dead) that going Outside might not be needed. I think they only attempted to create the Recoloda and Cure for Path while Outside because of time restraints. It was a last effort before impending doom.

I don't remember in which book.. but it's mentioned that Jane has other "friends." After SotG I always wanted Bean to be one of them. I sort of realize now that it's a thin possibility, but instead it's more likely that Jane would reveal herself to Bean when neccesary. It was Bean that suggested the Mind Game be used for Ender's pension/investments - which, in an indirect way, programmed Jane when to reveal herself to Ender. It would make a cosmic-sort-of-sense that something similar happen to Bean. Perhaps Ender instructed Jane to watch over his Jeesh members and intervene in their most dire times of need - something to that effect.
Posted by Jeff C. (Member # 12496) on :
Am I the only one who just doesn't care?

Inconsistencies exist in every series and in one that spreads over the course of three decades, it's pretty much expected. It still doesn't take away from the meaning of the books, at least not for me.
Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :
Originally posted by Jeff C.:
Am I the only one who just doesn't care?

I think if you were not, this thread might have more posters.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
Am I the only one who just doesn't care?

Inconsistencies exist in every series and in one that spreads over the course of three decades, it's pretty much expected. It still doesn't take away from the meaning of the books, at least not for me.

I obviously care, as I seem to be the only one defending the point.

However, I would like to point out that for me none of these issues take way from meaning of the books either. I'll still read all the new books, and I'll still think they're wonderful stories. I just want to chat about things I notice with other people who might be interested. That's all.
Posted by Jeff C. (Member # 12496) on :
Originally posted by salcedocine:
Am I the only one who just doesn't care?

Inconsistencies exist in every series and in one that spreads over the course of three decades, it's pretty much expected. It still doesn't take away from the meaning of the books, at least not for me.

I obviously care, as I seem to be the only one defending the point.

However, I would like to point out that for me none of these issues take way from meaning of the books either. I'll still read all the new books, and I'll still think they're wonderful stories. I just want to chat about things I notice with other people who might be interested. That's all.

That's pretty understandable. I don't know how many people actually notice these things. I guess I'm a little more oblivious to the contradictions when they happen.

But hey, at least it's not like Robinson Crusoe! Remember that scene where he swims out to the ship completely naked and then swims back with stuff in his pockets? Now THAT was a contradiction [Razz]
Posted by BlueWizard (Member # 9389) on :
Some one asked or questioned how Ender could not have or would not have spoken of Bean to Ender's Step-Children.

How do you know he didn't? The was on Lusitania for 30 years. A lot of conversations can happen in 30 years, and we are not privilege to every single one of them because they don't have anything to do what the plot of the story being told.

Next, it is 3000 years from the time when Ender knew Bean and the others, in his mind these people have been dead for centuries. Even in the real time of Ender's space travel, Bean is a memory from more than 35 years ago.

My Dad was in World War II, in the heat of battle. Yet, he never really spoke of it. The general fact was mentioned, but no mention of the individuals or the specific events, and I think that is true for many veterans. War is hell, and you don't burden the people around you with your vision of hell.

I just don't see Ender as the kind of guy who sits around and reminisces. Perhaps on quiet dark night in the beginning he may have spoken of it with Val. But I really don't see much of that either. In the whole series, Ender is alone. He doesn't confide in people; people confide in him. He is the healer, not the healed.

I think the fact that we don't get a 100% timeline in any of the stories is the saving grace. Again, at the end of Ender's Game and the beginning of Ender in Exile, the two accounts of event don't have to match. The best example, is the conversion between Ender and Val in Ender's Game doesn't have to match the conversation in Ender in Exile. They are simply different conversations at different times.

Also, the general accounting of what Ender was doing when Val arrived. They don't have to precisely match because neither is a full accounting of time, and neither is a full accounting of the details. Detail difference are simply re-tellings of the same event with emphasis on different aspects. There is a lot of flexibility for the details of various events not to match and for them to still be the same.

Back to Ender telling or not telling his kids and his wife, and Val, and others about Bean, we don't know that he didn't.

Now, the genetic technology that lead to the existance of Bean is 3,000 year old technology. What ever was discovered in the science related to Bean has long ago been incorporated into the genetic science of the day. It is likely the people of Path were a distant offshot of the technology that created Bean.

But, given that Bean is 3,000 year old technology, I don't see how mentioning Bean would help any one. OK, there was this guy 3,000 years ago who was genetically modified, how does that help? How does the knowledge apply to genetic technology that is 3,000 years more advanced than the technology that created Bean?

I'm sure Mr Card will find a way to tie the stories together. It doesn't seem like that impossible of a task.

Frequently, when he is ready to tie two stories together, he will start a post here so we can work out the details through discussion, much as we are doing right now.

Again, I can't worry about a problem that doesn't yet exist.

Posted by la.SOMA (Member # 10608) on :
i realize this "problem" reminds me a lot of the Starwars prequels. Through all of Episode 1-3 i found myself getting steamed about how C3PO never mentioned anything about Anakin/Darth Vader during episodes 4-6 - but during some of the final moments of episode 3 they have his memory erased.

i agree with steve that this isnt a problem yet.. but it certainly is something to be aware of in the C3PO sense. it feels like it deserves some sort of acknowlegment.
Posted by kmbboots (Member # 8576) on :
Originally posted by Jeff C.:
Am I the only one who just doesn't care?

Nope. But I don't intend to read them.
Posted by Jeorge (Member # 11524) on :
Originally posted by la.SOMA:
but it certainly is something to be aware of in the C3PO sense. it feels like it deserves some sort of acknowlegment.

I don't see why...I think all the comments that have been made above thoroughly cover why there's no reason to assume that Ender would have mentioned Bean in the Speaker, etc. books.

Trying to retcon to include something like that would be like admitting there's a problem when there *is* no problem.

If there's still a "problem" that hasn't been answered above, I don't know what it is...
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
If there's still a "problem" that hasn't been answered above, I don't know what it is...
The Jane problem is quite a biggie, actually, and nobody has given any hint of a solution.

The Jane continuity problem goes thus:

We know that:

1.) Jane's memory is made up of all computers connected to the ansible in the world, so she knows everything on every computer ever simultaneously.

2.) Bean's ship has an ansible connection, so it stands to reason that Jane has access to that ship's data and can communicate with it.

From these two facts we can infer that:

3.) Jane knows about Bean's kids and their condition.

If The Beanie Babies aren't dead by the time of Xenocide, why doesn't Jane call them back as soon as she has the cure? Why doesn't Jane bring them instantly to Lusitania?

You can't say that she was waiting to do it later. Her life was at risk (late Xenocide, early CotM) - why would she risk not giving the cure to The Beanie Babies?

So do the Beanies already have a cure by the time they meet the rest of the gang? If they do, why wouldn't Jane recruit them in early Xenocide to help with the gang, seeing as how they're clearly the most brilliant geneticists in the universe (having already solved such a complex problem as their disease on their own)?

Even with all the arguments provided about why Ender wouldn't have already brought up Bean, gang and mentions of the Shadow series (some of which I agree with, most of which I don't) those don't address why Jane wouldn't bring them up - specially in such dire circumstances.

Again, think, if he had written the books in chronological order, wouldn't people be furious at the things he left out of Speaker, Xenocide and CotM as followups to SotG, Exile, Investment Counselor and SiF?

Solutions to the Jane problem without rewriting the story are welcome.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
I would think that while Jane could contact them, she never really looked into it, they were just another ansible to her. If they weren't part of ender's attention they wouldn't have been important to Jane.
Preposterous. Jane's attention is almost everywhere at once, the whole point of her character is that she's almost godlike in how many things she can pay attention to at once (which is the whole reason why she can push things Outside).

Why wouldn't she devote one billionth of her attention to constantly watch over three of the most brilliant people in the universe? It would stand to reason that, given her supernatural ability, she would keep track of everyone who ever had a connection to Ender (or who was particularly outstanding in some way). Why on Earth would she just "not pay attention" to possibly the only people related to him in any way still alive?

Keep in mind that good part of why we meet Qing Jao at all is precisely because she stands out to Jane - and she does so because Jane keeps tabs on everyone at all times.
Posted by Jeorge (Member # 11524) on :
I don't get why this is preposterous. If Bean and Co. aren't actively pursuing conversation with the outside world, is there even any way that Jane would know that the ansible is on anything but a derelict ship floating through space (and would she even know that much?) Of course, there are one or two short stories I haven't read, so I may be missing something.

Over all, it just seems to me like you're trying to predict what OSC is going to write, and then tell us that there are issues with your theory about how he's going to write it.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
Why would Jane stop following them? How does that make any sense?

All the arguments of "Jane was just busy with other stuff" forget the fact that Jane:

1.) Is Capable of understanding and following trillions of lines of thought simultaneously (please bear in mind the enormity of that number).

2.) Has thousands of years of leisure. Three thousand to be exact.

It's explicitly stated in the books that one of the first things she does is study everything about Ender before showing herself to him. Jane should know everything about everyone related to Ender ever written on a computer. Story wise this has no other solution other than somebody actively blocking Jane from information about Bean (and would somebody blocking Jane really be able to stop her?)

If Bean was completely unrelated to Ender, I get it, he and his kids could slip under the radar. But given his direct and strong connection to Ender, his genetic condition, the pursuit of a cure for his genetic condition, and a million other details, it seems preposterous that he would slip under Jane's radar.

Jane is always curious about everything, especially things Ender related. Jane has read all historic accounts ever, both classified and public. The logic line is this:

1.) Jane knows about Bean. 2.) Jane, by her very nature, finds out EVERYTHING about Bean. 3.) Jane knows about the Beanie Babies. 4.) Jane knows about their condition. 5.) Jane, for some reason unknown, does nothing to cure them or recruit their help.

I really don't see how you can counter argue points 1-4 by what we know about the characters, and once you accept those, I don't see how five isn't clearly an error.

Over all, it just seems to me like you're trying to predict what OSC is going to write, and then tell us that there are issues with your theory about how he's going to write it.
That is absolutely write Jeorge. That is exactly what I'm doing, I'm predicting what OSC is going to write and ringing alarm bells that there'd be a problem with it. If he writes something that somehow addresses all the problems I've brought up (and would have to retroactively explain why the Beanies didn't come up between Xenocide and CotM) I'll be very glad indeed.

The reason I've labored so much on this theory is that 99% of Hatrack dismisses this as a non-issue. It is an issue, it's a major issue. If OSC addresses it, then by definition, he's solving the problem - not negating there ever was one. I hope he does. If he doesn't, I still enjoy his work very much.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
I hate double posting like this, but I always post and the realize I've forgotten something. I know, I must be the most annoying person on Hatrack right now, but I swear this isn't trolling.

Anyway, the thing I forgot is this:

The investment software that keeps the "perpetual funds" for the research into Bean's condition active is...Jane herself. She's the tool used in order to keep the funding on his condition eternal. Now, please, tell me that she wouldn't be even a little curious about what that money was going towards and that she would just "not notice" Bean and his trip through space.
Posted by Jeorge (Member # 11524) on :
That is absolutely write Jeorge. That is exactly what I'm doing, I'm predicting what OSC is going to write and ringing alarm bells that there'd be a problem with it.
Ah, well, a wise man once said that every day has enough trouble of its own, so why borrow the troubles of tomorrow? I'm content to wait until OSC finishes writing his books, and not worry about how he *might* write it.

Besides, if I could predict his stories, I wouldn't find them nearly as interesting as I do.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
It's weird that I wrote "that's write". Brain fart. I meant, obviously, "that's right".

Anyway, I'm just indulging in speculation. As I've said repeatedly (ad nauseum really), as long as OSC acknowledges the problems then he's likely to find a creative way to solve them.
Posted by BlueWizard (Member # 9389) on :
Despite the fact that Jane's life has spanned over 3,000 years, doesn't stop her conscious self from living in real time. And in parallel, the Beanie Babies are also living in real (space) time.

At the moment they are a little busy in Lusitania, what with a virus threatening to kill them all, and a fleet of war ships coming to destroy them. I don't think they have the time to dwell on leisurely secondary considerations.

However, now all those primary problems are resolved. So, there is time to think of other things, one of those other things is the realization that they have the cure for the Beanie Babies.

Jane's thoughts are much like our own, only on a much larger and grander scale. We shift the priorities of our thoughts. At the moment work is getting the highest processing power and home is on the back burner. Once work is over, work shifts to the back burner and home moves to the front.

Now that their own problem are resolved, it is possible that Jane will turn her attention to other problems. Problems like the Beanie Babies.

As to Ender thinking and speaking of Bean, as I mentioned most war veterans are not inclined to recount stories of the war. I suspect at times when it was relevant, Ender did mention Bean, but only in restrained ways. As I said before, Ender is not the type to express his own problems or feelings; he spends his time analyzing and dealing with the problems of others. He is the healer, not the healed.

And, I don't see Bean as relevant to the virus problem that the faced on Lusitania. The technology that create Bean is ancient, and likely already incorporated in to the technology of the day. Keep in mind, this is a somewhat primitive colony, yet they have technical instruments far beyond what even the most advanced labs on current day earth have. So, the small genetic manipulations that created Bean is well within their grasp. At the moment though, they are working on a problem far beyond that of the crude missteps that created Bean.

Now, Ender and Val and Jane may well have thought of and talked about Bean 'off camera'. But I don't see those thoughts and conversations as driving the immediate plot forward. Now in hindsight, it would have made nice continuity to have had in the the Speaker series to tie it to the New Shadow series. But, as I have mentioned, we only see and hear what is relevant at the moment, which does not account for every second of time. At other time and in other places, many thoughts and conversations could have occurred which are now relevant to the new story.

Ender, Val, Jane, and other can talk about Bean in the time frame of Speaker, but we only hear about them in the 'Flight' or 'Alive' stories because it is in those stories that they are relevant.

In short, even though we don't see it at the time, Card can go back and now insert various 'off camera' discussions that occur in the 'Speaker' series.

I don't see this as a cheat or a conflict of interests. It perfectly mirrors real life. Our thought and memories are dominated by what is relevant at the moment. As momentary priorities change, our thoughts and memories change with them.

Just a few thoughts.

Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
Ender, Val, Jane, and other can talk about Bean in the time frame of Speaker, but we only hear about them in the 'Flight' or 'Alive' stories because it is in those stories that they are relevant.

In short, even though we don't see it at the time, Card can go back and now insert various 'off camera' discussions that occur in the 'Speaker' series.

I don't see this as a cheat or a conflict of interests. It perfectly mirrors real life. Our thought and memories are dominated by what is relevant at the moment. As momentary priorities change, our thoughts and memories change with them.

It's not a cheat. It's a fairly decent solution. Thank you for the response, I mostly agree with what you said.
Posted by Jeff C. (Member # 12496) on :
A simple solution to the Jane problem would be to just say the bean kids don't have an ansible. Maybe it was destroyed early on and (for some reason) they were unable to repair it.
Posted by mr_porteiro_head (Member # 4644) on :
Story wise this has no other solution other than somebody actively blocking Jane from information about Bean (and would somebody blocking Jane really be able to stop her?)
Perhaps, if Jane helped them do it.

Bean or somebody else could have convinced Jane to leave them alone and forget all about Bean and his children.
Posted by salcedocine (Member # 12613) on :
But why? Why would someone do that? Why would Jane listen? Wouldn't Bean see that Jane may be their best hope at finding a cure, and isn't that his whole purpose to keep on living?
Posted by Robert Scott Lewis (Member # 12770) on :
can anyone think of a logical way to reconcile the Ender from Exile with the one from Speaker without rewriting anything?...

The answer is obvious. Leave it untouched. Ender didn't need to recall any of the information obtained in Exile, because that is what the Hive Queen was for. Regardless of whether the stories were written or not, Ender accepted that he had nothing to do with the human race, and even though they took pity on him and tried to send him off with some honor he always knew there was more to it and that was the redemption of the species he destroyed. Ender knew a lot of things about a lot of people's lives. Too many details, in fact. But when it came down to saving the Hive Queen, nothing that Bean said or did for him after battle school was useful for him. It was this incredible planet, the Piggies, the Descolada, And Novinha that was important to him and the Hive Queen. Card may very well tie all that back around to Bean's children, we do have a planet of geniuses controlled by Starways Congress, which is exactly what Bean was trying to prevent before he died, and we have a virus that destroys and changes every cell of every organism it is exposed to, which is exactly (correct me if I'm wrong) what Ender Delphiki said he needed (and got) in order to "cure" there giantism. Who knows how it is all going to play out, and quite frankly who cares? All this means is that we have more books about Bean's children coming out, not to mention the fact that Ender, in a way, is not dead. Peter and Valentine are carrying on in his name and they might come across the Children of the Giant. Or maybe they will all realize that the Hive Queen was actually lying to Ender (the Xenocide) all this time. After all, she is the one with control of what images he sees isn't she? Maybe Peter, Val and the Giants have to not only fight the buggers again, but also the piggies. All of these are possibilities I believe, but the fact of the matter is that Ender's life happened the way it happened because That is how he could finally live with himself. The irony is that he should have never reconnected with human life, it is in fact what killed him. At least he died with a clear conscience.
Posted by swinkscalibur (Member # 13043) on :
It seems to me there are three main issues in reconciling the shadow series with the ender's series.
1. Ender's Knowledge
2. Jane's Knowledge
3. The time gap.

Possible Solutions
1. Solutions to Ender's knowledge are well documented above. Maybe he did talk about it, however no one saw the value. Especially since the events of even SiF are far in the past.
2. The solution to Jane's knowledge, or apparent lack of knowledge is also not terribly difficult to manage. Jane herself grew in her powers over time. In fact, I'm not sure her revelation to Ender in "Investment Councillor" is even concretely fixed in the timeline. If Jane studied and explored for all the knowledge of Bean and his children it may all have been apparently resolved in her observation before she spoke her first words to Ender. Finally any information that was shared between her and Ender can also be dealt with in the same was as Ender.
3. The biggest issue is to explain how/why Bean children have lived 2500 years. IF they have been flying near lights speed, then WHY and to WHERE. It makes no sense to be heading to Lusitania, I hope they have been pursuing their own investigation into the Descaladores. Or perhaps Bean's children are not directly in the story. Perhaps it will be a select group of decendants, part of a new race of leguminotes.
Posted by illza (Member # 13047) on :
Time passage, memory fading, and "off screen" conversations are decent ways to write off any noticed discrepancies with Ender's knowledge (or any apparent lack thereof).

In regards to #4:

In Ender in Exile, the letter from Hyrum to Ender that prefaces chapter 12 explains to Ender that Bean is, in fact, taking on a lightspeed voyage. Graff does not directly mention in the message any search for a cure for the condition, but he does attach "documentation concerning his genetic illness."

The message does not indicate that Bean took children with him. In fact, it basically says that Bean's gone and he's not coming back.

As for Jane:

Bean's ship left Earth in 2210 and had traveled for just over 5 years (421 years on Earth) when Shadows in Flight takes place. The investment software is also mentioned, but I think it possible that Jane is not yet self-aware. However, I don't have "Investment Counselor" in front of me and I don't recall that short story indicating a timeline other than Ender turning 20. We do know that Bean had already left Earth before Ender arrived on Shakespeare and Ender stayed there for 2 years. Without pulling out Lorentz equations, it seems likely that Beans death occurs well before Ender meets Jane.

The end of Shadows in Flight indicates that Beans children will be populating an uncharted world and are planning to hide completely from the rest of the Human Race. Combined with knowing that Bean and his children are both geniuses and born sneaks, I also think that it's highly likely that Jane doesn't know anything about them. In fact, I'd be surprised if the Leguminotes don't learn about Jane before Ender does. And combining that with the fact that Bean's children "hacked the ansible tech years ago", I think it's a real possibility.

In short, if Ender brought up Bean and his condition, it probably would have been a passing reference to Ella which she likely would have fobbed off as a dead-end since there had be no promising (or published) research in that area in over 2500 years. It would have been a small enough detail as to be insignificant to the story that it not being chronicled is easily accounted for.

Now, if it really is Bean's children in Shadows Alive, and I really think that it should be, it would be logical that the descolada is somehow directly responsible for bringing them out of ... the shadows (sorry, couldn't resist). Perhaps the planet they stopped at ended up not being a good candidate once they found it infested with descolada. Perhaps they left and kept planet hopping to find a new home only to find all of them infected. So, they naturally search for the source because, being Leguminotes, are able to jump directly to the conclusion that it was somehow artificial. This would allow for enough relativistic time to pass to bring them to the Descolada planet right on time, and perhaps at only a couple years younger than new Peter and human Jane.

All of this is speculation, of course, but it mostly makes sense in my mind.
Posted by MathTeacherGuy (Member # 13034) on :
In general, I feel like each of these issues could easily be solved by a short story or two.

For instance, Jane discovers the leguminotes. Jane talks with them and decides that they are no threat to humanity. The leguminotes express a desire to be separate from humanity. She relays the information to Ender. The two decide that they should respect the leguminotes' wishes and determine that to best protect them they cannot ever mention their existence in any way, including even drawing any attention to Bean's genetic heritage.

And this sort of thing could even be explained quite easily as the story progresses, like in pre-chapter emails or something like that.


Those are some good points. I'd actually also thought of the idea that Bean's children might either disable the ansible back to Earth or change the tech in such a way that no one from the hundred worlds (including Jane) can detect them, but I hadn't considered that the Investment Counselor timeline could allow for Bean's children to discover and interact with Jane before Ender did. Thanks for the idea, since it clearly forms the core of the previous theory in this post. Welcome to the forums.

My own idea for the leguminotes rejoining humanity is Ender's death. Since the progenitor of their race cared so much about Ender, I could see him becoming something of a myth in their culture. Perhaps after the events of Children of the Mind, it becomes common knowledge (or just the leguminotes manage to discover) that Ender lived for thousands of years before dying on Lusitania, and so the leguminotes go there almost as a pilgrimage. Keep in mind, Bean recommended that his children could use religion to help shape their species' views of humans. And who better to put at the center of that religion than Ender, who is already the center of a the Speaker for the Dead quasi-religion?

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