Mar 08, 2021 10:21 PM
Demon Cam in the Space Silmarillion
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"...can I please have another cherry?" Tása says. "If it's not too much trouble?"

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"It's no trouble at all." Cam makes him a whole bowlful and the bowl.

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His eyes widen. His mother turns to watch him expectantly.

"I can give everyone a cherry," he says triumphantly. "Thank you! Thank you so much! Mom I have so many I have to share - everyone's hungry -" And he takes the bowl and races out the door. 

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"Do you want me to just go conjure up a feast somewhere or what."

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"If it's not too much trouble we'll probably want that," she says. "No one's starving, we're just on half-rations because it's not obvious when we'll next be somewhere that can grow food - losing the Suns was a catastrophe on a scale we hadn't really prepared for... I expect the King'll want ships first and then food can be sorted while we're in transit, and weaponry once we land...we should give you something, but if you can make things it is not obvious what kinds of gifts we can give you..."

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"One of the perennial demon-summoning problems. I happen to be an unusually altruistically inclined demon but the standard currency is ideas - media recommendations, usually."

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"Oh, good, so we can just give you complete recordings of everything Macalaure's ever done - do we even need to give it to you - and that's just compensation even for a fleet of light-leaping ships, I think." She shakes her head. 

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"You do not need to actually give it to me, just knowing what to grab is enough," Cam says.

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"Prince Canafinwe Macalaure. Ah, start with the third symphony, I suppose, if you're starting somewhere. He's astonishing."

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"Thanks." Cam conjures up his computer and makes a note of this and then clips it to a belt loop, tail aswish.

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She watches him with fascination. And then - "oh, good, he's here."

 

And someone else walks in. Even taller, even prettier, with elaborately braided bright red hair that's barely the worse for the wear from the helmet he's pulling off. She bows again and he shakes his head at her. "There's neither time nor space," he says, "and it's I who should be honored anyway. How are you holding up? Maitimo," he offers Cam, taking in the wings and tail. "And what's going on?"

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"Cam, pleased to meet you," Cam says. "I am a summonable demon and I have been accidentally summoned into an alternate universe suffering from what sound like extremely demon-meliorable supply problems!"

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"He can create things. Any things."

He raises an eyebrow. "Well. In that case I am very very pleased to meet you and we definitely have demon-meliorable supply problems. What level of specification do you need to create things?"

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"I can copy things I can identify sufficiently well; I have to know more about what I'm doing if I'm making inexact copies; for a book I usually want title and author, say, but I can sometimes make do with substitute information; I don't expect to have any trouble with 'Canafinwë Macalaurë's third symphony'."

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"You have dreadful taste," says Maitimo to the woman, "I shall insist until the heat death of the universe that the seventh is the best one to start with. Wait, I suppose we might not need to worry about the heat death of universe anymore. In that case I'll insist even longer. There are ten so far," he adds to Cam. "I can ask him to compose another for you, if you win us this war."

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"Gosh. Uh, my standards of knowing what's going on for war-winning are substantially higher than same for giving a kid a bowl of cherries."

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"Good," he says earnestly, "I'd be alarmed if they weren't. Can you access our data systems?"

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"I would be astonished if there were preexisting compatibility between my information tech and yours."

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"'Maitimo's personal computer, and a copy of his mind-signature,' isn't enough specificity? Or do you avoid that on principle, I really shouldn't try to goad you into it..."

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"I mean, I could make your computer but I would not know how to operate it unless it's very intuitive. Mind-signature?"

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"You don't have one, I just thought you were blocking us. Perhaps in your universe there's no hardware for it. How do you communicate mind-to-mind, or do you not?"

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"...We don't. That is not a thing."

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"Ah. It is a thing for us. I suppose if you're indestructible it wouldn't be necessary. Care to come back to my ship? There are people I can put to the data compatibility question who'll sort it very quickly and I can explain everything in the meantime."

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"Sounds like a plan."

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"There are two ways to get to Endore from here," he says while they walk. "One is to just fly it in standard ships. That'll take - I don't know if our years are the same length - a Year for us is the length of time required for the Suns to cycle seventeen hundred twenty eight times - we use the distance light travels in a year as a unit of measurement for this kind of thing -"

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