How will House Phoenix arise from the ashes?

Davdi Silverrock davdisil at gmail.com
Wed Dec 21 01:14:05 PST 2005

On 12/19/05, K Kuhn <kknolte at ecity.net> wrote:
> Davdi Silverrock wrote:

> >
> > I am inclined to doubt that there are such examples.  If someone is a
> > full member of the House, then their genes should indicate that, and
> > they ought not be expelled - if their behavior violates civil norms,
> > then there ought to be civil punishments.  It's hard to imagine
> > behavior that violates House norms, yet not civil norms.  Which is why
> > Kragar being a crossbreed (or something else that doesn't fit into
> > House genetic norms) is far more likely than him "merely" giving
> > commands that no-one listened to (which isn't even incompetence, per
> > se).
> IIRC, when Vlad was killed in Yendi, he ended up giving a temporarily
> fatal lesson to one of his henchmen when he came back to the office,
> apparently because Kragar had let standards slip so badly while Vlad was
> dead but getting better that said henchman made a really obviously
> stupid mistake.  That kind of "poor order giving", ie, a command ability
> to ruin his subordinate's knowledge of what the heck they're doing in
> only a few days is not good, from a military perspective, although
> possibly not from a civil one.
> Ie, it doesn't matter that Kragar is apparently a very good at making
> his boss look good (even to the point of disobeying in order to save
> said boss's ass - see the restaurant scene where Vlad would have been
> assassinated if Kragar hadn't disobeyed), since in a military situation,
> if the boss gets killed in battle the next guy in rank has to take over,
> with rather bad results if he can't do the job.  Civil situations it
> doesn't matter quite so much.  So maybe Kragar is full Dragon, but so
> dangerous to a primarily military house like the Dragons (given that
> he's good enough at getting things done to be promoted, but absolutely
> horrible at being in charge), that he'd get kicked out?

I understand the point you're making, but I still see problems with
it.  Consider:  promotions are gradual.  Putting Kragar in charge of a
military group large enough to make a difference in a battle, while at
the same time being aware of his... peculiar unnoticibility, means
that whoever was in charge of field assignments was the one who made
the mistake, not Kragar himself.  Also, consider this:  Before a group
goes into battle, they train and practice maneuvers.  Again, ample
opportunity to note that Kragar's group is Not Doing Well because his
subordinates aren't paying attention to him.

> This assumes that the thing about Dragons wanting recognition for their
> ability (by being promoted to leading as many as they prove worthy of),
> is a strong trait, so that keeping a Dragon around to be useful, but
> carefully unpromoted to keep him out of the chain of command, leads to a
> very unhappy Dragon and a really nasty revenge on the ones who got
> promoted over him without being better at the job.

Again, we've seen Dragons who were not in fact ambitious for higher
command, so I see problems with that.

> Alternatively, if Kragar's possible ability to ruin an army's
> professionalism while in command led to a particularly humiliating and
> multiply-fatal-to-favorite-scions-of-important-families defeat, internal
> politics could lead to getting kicked out too.


Actually, I did just now think of another scenario.  Let's say that
Kragar was at a rank that he was comfortable with, as an aide to some
real officer, which put him in the chain of command, but no real
prospects for advancement, nor really wanting any.  And perhaps this
officer *used* Kragar (and his extreme sneakitude) in ways that
Dragons would frown upon - that is, in sabotaging *fellow* officers,
perhaps by intercepting intelligence and presenting it as being his
(or her, Dragaerans being equal-opportunity) own, or messing with them
in other petty ways to gya's own advancement, all-in-all being conduct
unbecoming to an officer.  And perhaps this officer gets gyaself
killed in battle, so Kragar's problems with being in command are
brought to the fore as he has to handle things himself.  Hmm.  We
might even posit that the officer was discovered, and the sabotage
*was* considered as being over the line of treason, and the officer
was executed.

So, ordinarily, just being "not-listenable" wouldn't have gotten
Kragar kicked out, but combine that with his role in the sabotage
being discovered...  Perhaps Kragar was only spared death since he was
obeying orders, but "should have known" that he should not have obeyed
such orders.

Perhaps there actually is some sort of clause or basis for ejection
from the House for conduct unbecoming to a Dragon.

Hmm.  Maybe.  Although that doesn't explain the sneakitude itself. 
Unless...  Unless perhaps the officer posited was responsible for that
as well - perhaps a sorcerer or psychic specializing in creating
stealth illusions?  And that explains Kragar's friendship with Daymar;
no one was able to figure out how to undo the "stealth mode" besides
the original officer, and Kragar became more and more desperate to
find someone or something that would undo it (and obviously, failing,
even with Daymar)?

Shrug.  Perhaps I ought to add that to Speculation:Kragar as well...