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And on the third... Spoilers

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Re: And on the third... Spoilers
Post by tlb   » Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:18 am

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JohnRoth wrote:The important piece is just before the first chunk you quoted. I've underlined the really important bit.
Torch of Freedom, Chapter 14 wrote:Several hours later, neither Judson nor Genghis felt particularly cheerful.
It wasn't as if the arriving shuttles were steeped solely in gloom, despair, and bloodthirsty hatred. In fact, there was an incredible joyousness to most of the arrivals, a sense of having finally set foot on the soil of a planet which was actually theirs.
Of being home at last.
But there were scars, and all too often still-bleeding psychic wounds, on even the most joyous, and they beat on Genghis' focused sensitivity like hammers. The fact that the 'cat was deliberately looking for dangerous fault lines, pockets of particularly brooding darkness, forced him to open himself to all the rest of the pain, as well. Judson hated to ask it of his companion, but he knew Genghis too well not to ask. Treecats were direct souls, with only limited patience for some of humanity's sillier social notions. And, to be honest, Genghis had a lot less trouble accepting and supporting the Ballroom's mentality than Judson himself did. Yet Genghis also understood how important Torch was not simply to his own person, but to all of the other two-legs around him, and that much of its hope for the future rested on the need to identify people whose choice of actions might jeopardize what the Torches were striving so mightily to build. Not only that, Torch was his home, too, now, and treecats understood responsibility to clan and nesting place.
Which didn't make either of them feel especially cheerful.
<That one.> Genghis' fingers flickered suddenly.
"What?"
Judson twitched. So far, despite the inevitable emotional fatigue, today's transport load of new immigrants had contained few "problem children," and he'd settled into a sort of cruise control as he watched them filtering through the arrival interview process.
<That one,> Genghis' fingers repeated. <The tall one in the brown shipsuit, by the right lift bank. With dark hair.>
"Got him," Judson said a moment later, although there was nothing particularly outwardly impressive about the newcomer. He was obviously from one of the general utility genetic lines. "What about him?"
<Not sure,> Genghis replied, his fingers moving with unusual slowness. <He's . . . nervous. Worried about something.>
"Worried," Judson repeated. He reached up and ran his fingers caressingly down Genghis' spine. "A lot of two-legs worry about a lot of things, O Bane of Chipmunks," he said. "What's so special about this one?"
<He just . . . tastes wrong.> Genghis was obviously trying to find a way to describe something he didn't fully understand himself, Judson realized. <He was nervous when he got off the lift, but he got a lot more nervous after he got off the lift.>
Judson frowned, wondering what to make of that. Then the newcomer looked up, and Judson's own mental antennae quivered.

They were not looking for agents; a passage just in front of yours explains what they were doing:
Torch of Freedom, Chapter 14 wrote:Somebody had to be in charge of the reception, processing, and orientation of the steady stream of ex-slaves pouring into Torch on an almost daily basis. The news that they finally had a genuine homeworld to call their own, a planet which had become the very symbol of their defiant refusal to submit to the dehumanization and brutality of their self-appointed masters, had gone through the interstellar community of escaped slaves like a lightning bolt. Judson doubted that any exile had ever returned to his homeland with more fervor and determination than he saw whenever another in the apparently endless stream of ASL-sponsored transport vessels arrived here in Torch. Torch's population was expanding explosively, and there was a militancy, a bared-teeth snarl of defiance, to every shipload of fresh immigrants. Whatever philosophical differences might exist between them, they were meaningless beside their fierce identification with one another and with their new homeworld.
But that didn't mean they arrived here in a calm and orderly state of mind. Many of them did, but a significant percentage came off the landing shuttles with a stiff-legged, raised-hackle attitude which reminded Judson of a hexapuma with a sore tooth. Sometimes it was the simple stress of the voyage itself, the sense of traveling into an unknown future coupled with the suspicion that in a galaxy which had never once given them an even break, any dream had to be shattered in the end. That combination all too often produced an irrational anger, an internal hunching of the shoulders in preparation for bearing yet another in an unending chain of disappointments and betrayals. After all, if they came with that attitude, at least they could hope that any surprises would be pleasant ones.
For others, it was darker than that, though. Sometimes a lot darker. Despite Harper's deliberate humor, he knew as well as Judson that any given transport was going to have at least one "Ballroom burnout" on board.
Harper was the one who'd coined the term. In fact, Judson doubted that he himself would ever have had the nerve to apply it if Harper hadn't come up with it in the first place, and the fact that the other man had only made Judson respect him even more. Harper had never discussed his own record as a Ballroom assassin with Judson, but it wasn't exactly a secret here on Torch that he'd long since forgotten exactly how many slavers and Manpower executives he'd "terminated with extreme prejudice" over his career. Yet Harper also recognized that too many of his Ballroom associates had been turned into exactly what the Ballroom's critics insisted all of them were.
Every war had its casualties, Judson thought grimly, and not all of them were physical, especially in what was still called "asymmetrical warfare." When the resources of the two sides were as wildly unbalanced as they were in this case, the weaker side couldn't restrict itself and its strategies on the basis of some sanitized "code of war" or some misplaced chivalry. That, as much as the raw hatred of Manpower's victims, was a major reason for the types of tactics the Ballroom had adopted over the decades . . . and the revulsion of many people who rejected its methods despite their own deep sympathy with the abolition movement as a whole. Yet there were more prices than public condemnation buried in the Ballroom's operations. The cost of taking the war to something as powerful as Manpower and its corporate allies in ways that maximized the bloody cost to them was all too often paid in the form of self brutalization—of turning oneself into someone not only capable of committing atrocities but eager to.
The Ballroom had always made a conscientious effort to identify itself and its members as fighters, not simple killers, but after enough deaths, enough bloodshed, enough horror visited upon others in retaliation for horrors endured, that distinction blurred with dismaying ease. All too often, there came a time when playing the role of a sociopath transformed someone into a sociopath, and quite a few Ballroom fighters who fell into that category turned up here on Torch unable—or unwilling—to believe that a planet inhabited almost exclusively by ex-slaves could possibly have renounced the Ballroom's terrorist tactics.
Judson didn't really blame them for feeling that way. In fact, he didn't see how it could have been any other way, actually. And he'd come to feel not simply sympathy, but a degree of understanding for the men and women who felt and thought that way which he would flatly have denied he could ever feel before his own time here on Torch. He'd seen and learned too much from hundreds, even thousands, of people who—like his own father—had experienced Manpower's brutality firsthand to blame anyone for the burning depth of his hatred.
Yet it was one of the Immigration Service's responsibilities to identify the people who felt that way, because Jeremy X had been completely serious. And he'd been right, too. If Torch was going to survive, it had to demonstrate to its friends and potential allies that it was not going to become a simple haven for terrorism. No one in his right mind could possibly expect Torch to turn against the Ballroom, or to sever all of its links to it, and if Jeremy had attempted to do anything of the sort, his fellow subjects would have turned upon him like wolves. And rightfully so, in Judson's opinion. But the Kingdom of Torch had to conduct itself as a star nation if it ever meant to be accepted as a star nation, and a home for ex-slaves, built by ex-slaves, as an example and a proof of ex-slaves' ability to conduct themselves as a civilized society, was far more important than any open support for Ballroom-style operations could ever have been.

I have heighted the important line in the following to show how they were definitely NOT looking for agents:
Torch of Freedom, Chapter 23 wrote:"What's on your mind?" Harper S. Ferry asked when Judson Van Hale came into his office. The former Sphinx Forestry Service ranger was frowning and the treecat perched on his shoulder seemed unusually somber as well. "You're looking disgruntled this morning."
Van Hale gave him a quick smile, but there wasn't any humor in it. "Whatever happened to the background check you were going to do on Ronald Allen?"
"Ronald who?"
"He was one of the ex-slave immigrants who arrived here about two months ago. Genghis thought his mental—'taste,' he calls it—was a little wrong. I brought the matter to your attention and you were going to do a more thorough background check."
"Yeah, I remember now. Hm. Good question, actually. I'd forgotten about it. Let me see what Records has to say." Harper began keying entries into his computer. "Spell the name, would you? The last name, I mean."

"Allen. A-L-L-E-N, not A-L-L-A-N." Judson drew a memo pad from his pocket and thumbed the entry he'd pre-selected. "Here. This is what he looks like."
Harper glanced at the screen in Van Hale's hand and saw a tall man in a brown jumpsuit. Going by his appearance, he was probably one of what Manpower called its "general utility lines," which they designated either D or E. That was a fancy way of saying that they hadn't bothered to do much in the way of genetic engineering.
A screen came up on Harper's computer. After studying it for a few seconds, he hissed in a breath.
Judson could feel Genghis tensing on his shoulder. The treecat was picking up the emotional aura Harper was emanating as a result of whatever he'd seen on the screen. "What's the matter?" he asked.
"God damn all business-as-usual clerks," Harper said. "This should have been flagged and brought to my attention immediately."
He swiveled the screen so Judson could see it. The screen read:

Background search
Allen, Ronald
MANPOWER SLAVE IDENTITY NUMBER:
    D-17d-29547-2/5.
SCANNING ERROR
NUMBER ALREADY REGISTERED
REGISTRATION DATE: MARCH 3, 1920
REGISTRATION IDENTITY: ZEIGER, TIMOTHY
RESUBMIT FOR SCANNING
 
"Oh, hell," Judson said. "Where's Zeiger? And what happened to Allen?"
Harper S. Ferry was working at the keyboard again. After a moment he said: "Zeiger'll be easy to find, thankfully. He's a resident of Beacon"—that was the name the ex-slaves had bestowed on Torch's capital city not long after the insurrection—"and, better still, he works for the Pharmaceutical Inspection Board. He's a clerk, too, not a field agent, so he ought to be right here." He gestured at one of the windows. "Well, just a few blocks away. We can be there in five minutes."
"And Allen?"
Harper keyed in some final words. "Oh, wonderful. He also works in the pharmaceutical industry, but he's a roustabout. He could be anywhere on the planet."
"Which company does he work for?"
"Havlicek Pharmaceutics. One of the Erewhonese firms."
"Well, that's a break. They'll have good personnel records, unlike most of the homegrown outfits—and you didn't hear me cast that aspersion upon our stalwart native entrepreneurs."
Harper chuckled, and pulled out his com unit. "I'll see if I can track down Allen's whereabouts, while I'm pulling up the scanning records. Meanwhile, trot over to the PIB and see what's up with Zeiger."

If they were concerned about agents they would NOT have waited two months to check this one. It was the duplicate slave number that tripped up the agent.
With the exception of Honor and her son, the tree cats can only sense emotional states from humans; so they do not get anything special from a trained agent. It is only when the nanotech takes over that the cats sense the panic of the human no longer in control; that is how they detect the nanotech - only when it takes control. The cats were deployed to protect important people from assassins. This example is not one of those cats, but of one already bonded.
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Re: And on the third... Spoilers
Post by JohnRoth   » Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:46 am

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tlb wrote:
. . . I'm dropping all the text, etc because it's getting too much to plow through. . .



Of course they were not looking for agents: so what? That wasn't the original question I was addressing.

Here's a copy of the original issue:

tlb wrote:Even with tree cats, things are very limited since they only sense when the nanotech overrides the subject's volition.



JohnRoth wrote: I don't think that is true: Manticore, Haven and Beowulf are rolling up the MAlign's intelligence network using treecats, and they aren't trying to trigger them first. The first instance on Torch, the cat detected something off, but didn't know what it was.


That's the issue under discussion, and the quote I underlined says exactly what I claimed it said: Ghengis detected something he didn't understand, but Judson decided it was simply an unusually intense case of nerves. Consequently, there wasn't any followup until they detected the duplication of the bar codes and the agent suicided.

It's that something that Ghengis detected that Manticore, Haven and Beowulf are using to detect agents. I assume they've added a fair bit of sophistication to their procedures, but they aren't using "challenge and die." That's simply too slow and requires too much prep work.
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Re: And on the third... Spoilers
Post by tlb   » Sun Oct 21, 2018 9:04 am

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JohnRoth wrote:Of course they were not looking for agents: so what? That wasn't the original question I was addressing.

Here's a copy of the original issue:

tlb wrote:Even with tree cats, things are very limited since they only sense when the nanotech overrides the subject's volition.

JohnRoth wrote: I don't think that is true: Manticore, Haven and Beowulf are rolling up the MAlign's intelligence network using treecats, and they aren't trying to trigger them first. The first instance on Torch, the cat detected something off, but didn't know what it was.

That's the issue under discussion, and the quote I underlined says exactly what I claimed it said: Ghengis detected something he didn't understand, but Judson decided it was simply an unusually intense case of nerves. Consequently, there wasn't any followup until they detected the duplication of the bar codes and the agent suicided.

It's that something that Ghengis detected that Manticore, Haven and Beowulf are using to detect agents. I assume they've added a fair bit of sophistication to their procedures, but they aren't using "challenge and die." That's simply too slow and requires too much prep work.

The original question was how to detect the people with nanotech in place and that was what I was responding to at first.
The question now is whether anyone is using cats to detect agents: you say yes and I say no, because the cats can only detect the emotional state which is not enough to expose a spy.

So far as I know this is the only example of an agent caught when a cat was around and it was the duplicate slave number that ultimately tripped him up. Without that nothing would have happened with him. Perhaps you are referring to the interrogation of prisoners such as Firebrand, which occur in a number of places; but they were not initially caught by the cats. Also that would not stop the nanotech from killing someone being questioned, Firebrand was lucky in that he escaped being so equipped. What Malign agents in the GA have been captured, other than Firebrand and this one on Torch?

The cats were not spread around Haven, Beowulf, the Andermani Empire and Manticore to catch agents; but to stop assassinations.

PS. In the metric thread with the blonde joke you accidently added an "f" to a word when quoting me, changing "this" to "thfis". Would you please fix that?
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Re: And on the third... Spoilers
Post by JohnRoth   » Sun Oct 21, 2018 1:41 pm

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JohnRoth wrote:Of course they were not looking for agents: so what? That wasn't the original question I was addressing.

Here's a copy of the original issue:

tlb wrote:Even with tree cats, things are very limited since they only sense when the nanotech overrides the subject's volition.

JohnRoth wrote: I don't think that is true: Manticore, Haven and Beowulf are rolling up the MAlign's intelligence network using treecats, and they aren't trying to trigger them first. The first instance on Torch, the cat detected something off, but didn't know what it was.

That's the issue under discussion, and the quote I underlined says exactly what I claimed it said: Ghengis detected something he didn't understand, but Judson decided it was simply an unusually intense case of nerves. Consequently, there wasn't any followup until they detected the duplication of the bar codes and the agent suicided.

It's that something that Ghengis detected that Manticore, Haven and Beowulf are using to detect agents. I assume they've added a fair bit of sophistication to their procedures, but they aren't using "challenge and die." That's simply too slow and requires too much prep work.


tlb wrote:The original question was how to detect the people with nanotech in place and that was what I was responding to at first.
The question now is whether anyone is using cats to detect agents: you say yes and I say no, because the cats can only detect the emotional state which is not enough to expose a spy.

So far as I know this is the only example of an agent caught when a cat was around and it was the duplicate slave number that ultimately tripped him up. Without that nothing would have happened with him. Perhaps you are referring to the interrogation of prisoners such as Firebrand, which occur in a number of places; but they were not initially caught by the cats. Also that would not stop the nanotech from killing someone being questioned, Firebrand was lucky in that he escaped being so equipped. What Malign agents in the GA have been captured, other than Firebrand and this one on Torch?

The cats were not spread around Haven, Beowulf, the Andermani Empire and Manticore to catch agents; but to stop assassinations.

PS. In the metric thread with the blonde joke you accidently added an "f" to a word when quoting me, changing "this" to "thfis". Would you please fix that?


There are several passages where different people discuss using the treecats to find moles and eliminate them. Those discussions occur on both sides, including a very juicy one where Colin D. (I think) says Manticore is rolling up their network, and laments that they eliminated a lot of their lower level agents when they executed Oyster Bay. They would not be rolling up those spy networks if all the cats could do was detect programmed assassins in the moment of execution.

Unfortunately, it's hiding at the moment, and I don't have an electronic copy to go hunting in.
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Re: And on the third... Spoilers
Post by ldwechsler   » Sun Oct 21, 2018 3:16 pm

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JohnRoth wrote:Of course they were not looking for agents: so what? That wasn't the original question I was addressing.

Here's a copy of the original issue:

tlb wrote:Even with tree cats, things are very limited since they only sense when the nanotech overrides the subject's volition.

JohnRoth wrote: I don't think that is true: Manticore, Haven and Beowulf are rolling up the MAlign's intelligence network using treecats, and they aren't trying to trigger them first. The first instance on Torch, the cat detected something off, but didn't know what it was.

That's the issue under discussion, and the quote I underlined says exactly what I claimed it said: Ghengis detected something he didn't understand, but Judson decided it was simply an unusually intense case of nerves. Consequently, there wasn't any followup until they detected the duplication of the bar codes and the agent suicided.

It's that something that Ghengis detected that Manticore, Haven and Beowulf are using to detect agents. I assume they've added a fair bit of sophistication to their procedures, but they aren't using "challenge and die." That's simply too slow and requires too much prep work.


tlb wrote:The original question was how to detect the people with nanotech in place and that was what I was responding to at first.
The question now is whether anyone is using cats to detect agents: you say yes and I say no, because the cats can only detect the emotional state which is not enough to expose a spy.

So far as I know this is the only example of an agent caught when a cat was around and it was the duplicate slave number that ultimately tripped him up. Without that nothing would have happened with him. Perhaps you are referring to the interrogation of prisoners such as Firebrand, which occur in a number of places; but they were not initially caught by the cats. Also that would not stop the nanotech from killing someone being questioned, Firebrand was lucky in that he escaped being so equipped. What Malign agents in the GA have been captured, other than Firebrand and this one on Torch?

The cats were not spread around Haven, Beowulf, the Andermani Empire and Manticore to catch agents; but to stop assassinations.

PS. In the metric thread with the blonde joke you accidently added an "f" to a word when quoting me, changing "this" to "thfis". Would you please fix that?


There are several passages where different people discuss using the treecats to find moles and eliminate them. Those discussions occur on both sides, including a very juicy one where Colin D. (I think) says Manticore is rolling up their network, and laments that they eliminated a lot of their lower level agents when they executed Oyster Bay. They would not be rolling up those spy networks if all the cats could do was detect programmed assassins in the moment of execution.

Unfortunately, it's hiding at the moment, and I don't have an electronic copy to go hunting in.[/quote]

Nanotech affected people might be the hardest to find since nothing much shows until it is activated. Nimitz never figured Honor's aide was affected even though he came close to him.

Rolling up spy networks can be helped by interrogations with furry lie detectors. Just mention names, etc.

Also, as Colin noted, they lost a lot of spies when they took down the space stations. That would be the key area to do espionage since it's where ships are built and manned. And, of course, there was no warning.
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Re: And on the third... Spoilers
Post by tlb   » Sun Oct 21, 2018 5:01 pm

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JohnRoth wrote:Of course they were not looking for agents: so what? That wasn't the original question I was addressing.

Here's a copy of the original issue:

tlb wrote:Even with tree cats, things are very limited since they only sense when the nanotech overrides the subject's volition.

JohnRoth wrote: I don't think that is true: Manticore, Haven and Beowulf are rolling up the MAlign's intelligence network using treecats, and they aren't trying to trigger them first. The first instance on Torch, the cat detected something off, but didn't know what it was.

That's the issue under discussion, and the quote I underlined says exactly what I claimed it said: Ghengis detected something he didn't understand, but Judson decided it was simply an unusually intense case of nerves. Consequently, there wasn't any followup until they detected the duplication of the bar codes and the agent suicided.

It's that something that Ghengis detected that Manticore, Haven and Beowulf are using to detect agents. I assume they've added a fair bit of sophistication to their procedures, but they aren't using "challenge and die." That's simply too slow and requires too much prep work.

tlb wrote:The original question was how to detect the people with nanotech in place and that was what I was responding to at first.
The question now is whether anyone is using cats to detect agents: you say yes and I say no, because the cats can only detect the emotional state which is not enough to expose a spy.

So far as I know this is the only example of an agent caught when a cat was around and it was the duplicate slave number that ultimately tripped him up. Without that nothing would have happened with him. Perhaps you are referring to the interrogation of prisoners such as Firebrand, which occur in a number of places; but they were not initially caught by the cats. Also that would not stop the nanotech from killing someone being questioned, Firebrand was lucky in that he escaped being so equipped. What Malign agents in the GA have been captured, other than Firebrand and this one on Torch?

The cats were not spread around Haven, Beowulf, the Andermani Empire and Manticore to catch agents; but to stop assassinations.

PS. In the metric thread with the blonde joke you accidently added an "f" to a word when quoting me, changing "this" to "thfis". Would you please fix that?

JohnRoth wrote:There are several passages where different people discuss using the treecats to find moles and eliminate them. Those discussions occur on both sides, including a very juicy one where Colin D. (I think) says Manticore is rolling up their network, and laments that they eliminated a lot of their lower level agents when they executed Oyster Bay. They would not be rolling up those spy networks if all the cats could do was detect programmed assassins in the moment of execution.

Unfortunately, it's hiding at the moment, and I don't have an electronic copy to go hunting in.

ldwechsler wrote:Nanotech affected people might be the hardest to find since nothing much shows until it is activated. Nimitz never figured Honor's aide was affected even though he came close to him.

Rolling up spy networks can be helped by interrogations with furry lie detectors. Just mention names, etc.

Also, as Colin noted, they lost a lot of spies when they took down the space stations. That would be the key area to do espionage since it's where ships are built and manned. And, of course, there was no warning.

Sorry, I do not remember a discussion of using cats to roll up the network (that does not mean that it is not there, only that I missed it). The discussion by the Detweilers about losing many agents was not stored either, I guess when I saw it I thought they were talking about Oyster Bay killing them. I have nothing electronic after Mission of Honor from the CD.
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Re: And on the third... Spoilers
Post by Jonathan_S   » Sun Oct 21, 2018 5:18 pm

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This is awkward to do on the phone, but here’s one of the places the ‘cat’s effectiveness at finding spies was discussed.
Uncompromising Honor wrote:She twitched her head in the direction of the SIS Director and Patricia Givens, and Honor nodded. One unanticipated—although it darned well should have been anticipated—advantage of the treecat bodyguards was the enormous edge they gave counter-intelligence agents. There still weren’t enough of them—treecats were a top-tier predator species; their population densities had always been low—but they’d already made their presence felt in a big way. The vetting process was still in its early stages, but the human-’cat teams had already unmasked no less than eleven spies in the upper levels of the ministries’ professional staffs. Four of them had “died of natural causes” when they realized they’d been detected, which left little doubt about who they’d been working for. The seven who hadn’t died didn’t know who their employers had been.
Last edited by Jonathan_S on Mon Oct 22, 2018 2:11 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: And on the third... Spoilers
Post by tlb   » Sun Oct 21, 2018 7:42 pm

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Jonathan_S wrote:This is awkward to do on the phone, but here’s one of the places the ‘cat’s effectiveness at finding spies was discussed.
Uncompromising Honor wrote:She twitched her head in the direction of the SIS Director and Patricia Givens, and Honor nodded. One unanticipated—although it darned well should have been anticipated—advantage of the treecat bodyguards was the enormous edge they gave counter-intelligence agents. There still weren’t enough of them—treecats were a top-tier predator species; their population densities had always been low—but they’d already made their presence felt in a big way. The vetting process was still in its early stages, but the human-’cat teams had already unmasked no less than eleven spies in the upper levels of the ministries’ professional staffs. Four of them had “died of natural causes” when they realized they’d been detected, which left little doubt about who they’d been working for. The seven who hadn’t died didn’t know who their employers had been.

Thank you. I will start rereading in the morning, clearly I need a refresher.
The strategy to have people die immediately on questioning seems strange, because it marks them as agents. The SL is even thinking people who do not die are okay. Is there another route Malign could have taken that would not be so obvious?
Last edited by tlb on Tue Oct 23, 2018 8:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: And on the third... Spoilers
Post by Brigade XO   » Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:06 pm

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The Alignment agents who died when confronted appeared to have been given the nanotech assassination treatment which means that they were carrying too much information to be allowed to be compromised and interogated. Those who "didn't know who their employers had been" were part of a much larger subset of agents who were recruited and were passing information but had no idea what the connection actual was. The reasons for recruitment could be places to so many things: money, being disgrunteled members of the military or government, any number of things. They were useful tools who are now caught and, while they may be pumped for what they shared and how, they don't seem to know much about the people who they gave the information too.

Either way, using the Treecats to eliminate people who have been passing information- to anybody- is going to make a major dent in the Alignment plans along with anybody elce who has used this type of agent. That could include various political parties on Manticore (or from other Star Nations) or businesses or Transtellars.
What they passed and when would provide parametars of what has gone out of Maticore's control and possibly the scopes and areas of intelegence that the handlers were looking for. That these people are likely to be going a way under Treason charges for a long long time (this is a prolong society) is going to boost the prison population a bit. Where Manticore ends up putting them would be interesting. It is also possible that the methods of information transfer can both shed light on who was looking for the info and illuminate conduits not considered before. Some might have even be "only" local industrial espionage and people looking to manipulate finacial markets or segments of industry for profit.

It occures to me that meetings with varioius leadership and agents of the political parties on Manticore might also flush out some interesting answers- along with suddenly dead politicians- which could ultimatly sort out some problems beyond the otherwise normal political difficulties such as the stuff that North Hollow's group were causing.

The Crown would have to be very discreat about doing that but some man or woman having a conversation at a political reception with a Treecat and it's assigned two-leg might end up dead on the floor of the conference room floor (nano inflicted) or in some very deep and hot water with otherwise polite conversation taking them to to places they never though would see the light of day or public scrutiny.
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Re: And on the third... Spoilers
Post by JohnRoth   » Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:39 pm

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JohnRoth wrote:Of course they were not looking for agents: so what? That wasn't the original question I was addressing.

Here's a copy of the original issue:

tlb wrote:Even with tree cats, things are very limited since they only sense when the nanotech overrides the subject's volition.

JohnRoth wrote: I don't think that is true: Manticore, Haven and Beowulf are rolling up the MAlign's intelligence network using treecats, and they aren't trying to trigger them first. The first instance on Torch, the cat detected something off, but didn't know what it was.

That's the issue under discussion, and the quote I underlined says exactly what I claimed it said: Ghengis detected something he didn't understand, but Judson decided it was simply an unusually intense case of nerves. Consequently, there wasn't any followup until they detected the duplication of the bar codes and the agent suicided.

It's that something that Ghengis detected that Manticore, Haven and Beowulf are using to detect agents. I assume they've added a fair bit of sophistication to their procedures, but they aren't using "challenge and die." That's simply too slow and requires too much prep work.

tlb wrote:The original question was how to detect the people with nanotech in place and that was what I was responding to at first.
The question now is whether anyone is using cats to detect agents: you say yes and I say no, because the cats can only detect the emotional state which is not enough to expose a spy.

So far as I know this is the only example of an agent caught when a cat was around and it was the duplicate slave number that ultimately tripped him up. Without that nothing would have happened with him. Perhaps you are referring to the interrogation of prisoners such as Firebrand, which occur in a number of places; but they were not initially caught by the cats. Also that would not stop the nanotech from killing someone being questioned, Firebrand was lucky in that he escaped being so equipped. What Malign agents in the GA have been captured, other than Firebrand and this one on Torch?

The cats were not spread around Haven, Beowulf, the Andermani Empire and Manticore to catch agents; but to stop assassinations.

PS. In the metric thread with the blonde joke you accidently added an "f" to a word when quoting me, changing "this" to "thfis". Would you please fix that?

JohnRoth wrote:There are several passages where different people discuss using the treecats to find moles and eliminate them. Those discussions occur on both sides, including a very juicy one where Colin D. (I think) says Manticore is rolling up their network, and laments that they eliminated a lot of their lower level agents when they executed Oyster Bay. They would not be rolling up those spy networks if all the cats could do was detect programmed assassins in the moment of execution.

Unfortunately, it's hiding at the moment, and I don't have an electronic copy to go hunting in.

ldwechsler wrote:Nanotech affected people might be the hardest to find since nothing much shows until it is activated. Nimitz never figured Honor's aide was affected even though he came close to him.

Rolling up spy networks can be helped by interrogations with furry lie detectors. Just mention names, etc.

Also, as Colin noted, they lost a lot of spies when they took down the space stations. That would be the key area to do espionage since it's where ships are built and manned. And, of course, there was no warning.


tlb wrote:Sorry, I do not remember a discussion of using cats to roll up the network (that does not mean that it is not there, only that I missed it). The discussion by the Detweilers about losing many agents was not stored either, I guess when I saw it I thought they were talking about Oyster Bay killing them. I have nothing electronic after Mission of Honor from the CD.


I believe they were talking about Oyster Bay - about a paragraph or so after mentioning that their networks were being rolled up. Both topics in one neat package.
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