The Oath of the Fey

The Oath of the Fey, also called the Raytheonic Oath (named after Eduard Raytheon, first Master of the McIntyre School) is an oath taken by telepaths and, eventually, by all psi-talented individuals.

The oath is given in the presence of a telepath, and the swearer's mind is open so that the telepath may read his/her sincerity. No practicing telepath is given the approval of the McIntyre School without swearing the Oath.

Text of the Oath:

I swear by all the gods of my house, by the spirits of my ancestors, and by the integrity of my being that I will keep this oath to the end of my life.

I will hold in highest regard those who taught me my art. They shall be as my parents and siblings, and I pledge that they shall never suffer want or neglect while I can prevent it.

I will use my talents as I have been taught, always guided first by the dictates of conscience and morality, second by civil law, and third by the orders of my superiors. I will be personally and singly responsible for all my actions, and will allow no other to take that responsibility from me.

I pledge never to use my talent in anger or other emotion, nor while I am made irresponsible by drugs. I pledge always to be respectful of the rights of those without my abilities, and always to be courteous to those who share my talent. I pledge that I will render aid and instruction to any who have not mastered their talents.

With purity and holiness I will pass my life and practice my art. Whatever I learn through my art and under seal of secrecy, this shall remain secret; whatever I learn without such seal, I will not reveal without clear and compelling reason.

While I continue to keep this oath unviolated, may it be granted to me to enjoy life and the practice of my art and craft, respected by all men, in all times; but should I trespass and violate this oath, may the reverse be my lot, and may my life be forfeit to the one who took this oath and to all paranormals everywhere. In token of my sincerity I open my mind to my oath-taker and my teachers, that they may read and judge my intentions.

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Empress Amy Kuchta

Empress of the Terran Empire TE 235 - 242

b. 30 April 209, Nagoya, Terra
d. 28 December 242, New York, Terra

Amy Kuchta was the only daughter of Mandike Kuchta (177-290) and mathematician Lisand Vasiliev. From before her birth, her destiny was dominated by her great-grandfather, Sten Kuchta (TE 123-237). Sten, in a bid for more political power for Idara Kuchta, embarked upon a program of genetic enhancement beginning with his daughter Erika (151-232) and continuing with Mandike (177-290) and Amy. Amy's particular enhancements included the strengthening of genetic constellations associated with mathematical ability and pattern-formation.

Amy's education included stays at Harvard, Cambridge, and Harare Universities. She passed her adulthood exams at age 15, and immediately began moving up through the Imperial bureaucracy. At 16 she attracted the attention of Emperor Tsung Dao Wu, who took an instant liking to the girl. She was attached to the Imeprial Court in 227, and in 229 she rose to the position of Imperial Hand, the Emperor's chief assistant. In 231, when she was 22, Tsung Dao Wu formally adopted Amy, naming her as his chosen successor.

In 223, at age 14, Amy entered into a dynastic marriage with Robert Churchill. The couple's three children (David, b. 224; Cathie, b. 227; and Judy, b. 231) were grown in vitro and raised under the supervision of Mandike Kuchta.

For the four years following her appointment as Emperor's Hand, Amy was the instrument of Tsung Dao Wu's administration. She travelled throughout the Empire on various missions, and built a reputation as a stern but rigorously fair person of great practical intelligence.

Upon Tsung Dao Wu's death in 235, Amy ascended to the Throne without serious challenge. Her seven-year reign was mostly absorbed in political machinations aimed at establishing a hereditary succession. It was not until 240 that the Imperial Council approved her nomination of her son David as her Heir.

Amy died in 242 at the age of 33; it is conjectured that the daily operation of the Memory Crown conflicted with her brain structure and caused cumulative damage. She was succeeded by her son, David Kuchta.

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The Marching Morons

It used to be an article of faith, among the self-appointed intelligentsia, that the human race would grow steadily stupider as time progressed. After the advent of reliable birth control, so the reasoning went, intelligent people would choose not to have children, or would stop after one or two—whereas the non-intelligent would continue to breed like rabbits. Over the course of generations, then, the proportion of intelligent people in the population would decline, and in the end, we would all be a bunch of morons.

This reasoning was impeccable—but it rested on the erroneous assumption that intelligence is hereditary. In fact, once economic factors are removed, there is absolutely no evidence of any correlation between the intelligence of parents and the intelligence of their children.

In short, the morons have not marched over the rest of us, because morons insist on having just as many intelligent children as do geniuses.

-from Closet to Chamber: An Autobiography by Miranda Maris, Firebrand Books, 2035

Find out more in Dance for the Ivory Madonna by Don Sakers Digg!


The Lister Gestalt

LISTER GESTALT: A virtual reality environment containing a specific arrangement of audio-video-tactile stimulation, which interacts with the human nervous system in such a way as to set up patterns of electrical feedback, resulting in immediate and total cascade failure, complete loss of higher brain functions, and death within 10 hours. Although the Lister Gestalt is commonly considered to be nothing more than hacker folklore, believers are quick to point out that no human could survive contact with the Gestalt, and that absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Every hacker, it seems, has a friend of a friend who knows someone who died after exposure to the Lister Gestalt.

The AI community has declined to either confirm or deny the existence of the Lister Gestalt.

-The Boy Who Cried 10111011110110000110 and Other Cyber Legends
by Dr. Brand Danjun, Norton, 2018

Find out more in Dance for the Ivory Madonna by Don Sakers Digg!