Chapter 23

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Chapter 23

Post by Freakzilla »

Safaris through ancestral memories teach me many things. The patterns, ahhh, the
patterns Liberal bigots are the ones who trouble me most. I distrust the
extremes. Scratch a conservative and you find someone who prefers the past over
any future. Scratch a liberal and find a closet aristocrat. It's true! Liberal
governments always develop into aristocracies The bureaucracies betray the true
intent of people who form such governments. Right from the first, the little
people who formed the governments which promised to equalize the social burdens
found themselves suddenly in the hands of bureaucratic aristocracies. Of course,
all bureaucracies follow this pattern. but what a hypocrisy to find this even
under a communized banner Ahhh, well, if patterns teach me anything it's that
patterns are repeated. My oppressions. by and large, are no worse than any of
the others and, at least. I teach a new lesson.

-The Stolen Journals

It is late evening on Audience Day before Leto can see the Bene Gesserit. Moneo stops to talk to Duncan on his way out and Leto wants to know what he said. Monea tells him Duncan thinks the flogging is un-Atreides and that he finds Hwi Noree attractive. Leto orders Duncan kept away from Hwi and orders Moneo to send Duncan and a troop of Fish Speakers to scour the city for trouble. Leto says he will meet the Bene Gesserit at False Sietch, former home of the Museum Fremen and currently their school.

Reverend Mothers Anteac and Luyseyal lead the delegation and both are Truthsaysers. Luyseyal is supposed to be the best they have and is obviously the one in charge. Leto, knowing it annoys them, greets them in Jessica's voice. They ask what he hopes to gain from the flogging. Nothing, he tells them, it diminishes him. They ask him to join forces with them since they are more alike than different. He says he would rather join with the degenerated Great Houses whining about their lost spice riches. They ask him about his physical changes, he tells them his brain has grown enormous and there is very little left of his skull. Durring the conversation, Luyseyal moves closer and closer to Leto almost imperceptively until Leto smells spice essence. he knows the Bene Gesserit would know the old stories about how spice essence will shatter a worm into sandtrout. He tells them he is not yet fully sandworm and he's more of a colony creature with sensory alterations. Luyseyal's hand moves towards a fold in her gown. He says there have been fads in smells and this stops her hand. He says he remembers them all, Anteac looks at Luysayal, neither dares speak. He says people covered their natural odors becaust they knew instictively that their pheromones betrayed them. He says they have missread their history of spice essence, sandtrout only sense it as water. They claim it was only a test, they were curious. Leto keeps the essence and asks them where they got it. They say they bought it from smugglers. He says there hasn't been smugglers for 2,500 years. Waste not, want not, says Anteac. He says he won't punish them , he is merely amused and they are still to be rewarded. They ask to protect him in their community. They know he deals with the Ixians and have reason to believe they may try to harm him. Leto says he doesn't fear the ixians. They say the Ixians have joined with the Guild to create an artificially intelligent mach that can predict even the God Emperor's actions and they fear it. Leto assures them that they will not make a mechanical brain. He tells them that automation is not the same as intelligence. Also, the closer they come to anticipating him, the more they will be his allies. Leto asks them a life-or-death question, "how do you even know you're alive?". Luyseyal gives a pat Bene Gesserit response, "I am the mirror of myself" which Leto finds offensive. Anteac says "I don't need pre-set tools to deal with my human problems, your question is sophomoric". This makes Leto laugh out loud and he asks Anteac to leave the Bene Gesserit and join him. Luyseyal looks puzzled and he tells her that if something falls outside your yardsticks you are dealing with intelligence, not automation. She starts to ask why he orders thinking machines from Ix if he has such a low opinion of them but Leto interupts and tells Anteac that Luyseyal should never let out of Chapterhouse without a guardian. Luyseyal goes pale and shuts her mouth. Young Luyseyal will never dominate old Anteac again. As their reward, Leto says he will continue their spice alotment for the next decade at it's current level and he will ignore what they really intended with the spice essence.

Duncan enters and informs Leto that there is violence in the city and in the Forbidden Forrest and he's brough a large group of guards to protect Leto. They are hunting his "wolves". The Reverend Mothers stand in awe as Leto tells Duncan exactly where, when and with what weapons to place Fish Speakers to quell the violence and that he should leave one survivor in each place. Idaho leaves and Anteac says this is a result of the flogging. He tells her to inform her superior that he prefers the company of predators to that of prey. He tells Moneo to replace the wolves in his forrest with humans.
They were destroyed because they lied pretentiously. Have no fear that my wrath
will fall upon you because of your innocent mistakes.

~Leto II, God Emperor
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