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What's the Point of Raoul?

Join us in talking discussing all things Honor, including (but not limited to) tactics, favorite characters, and book discussions.
Re: What's the Point of Raoul?
Post by jtg452   » Wed Dec 02, 2020 10:43 am

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ThinksMarkedly wrote:
jtg452 wrote:A 20 year jump? Maybe he's a very junior tactical officer (if he's in the Navy, the Tactical track is the only way he'll go since Tactical is THE command track and look who his parents are) serving on a CL or DD that comes across something. Think Abigail Hearns at Monica.


A 20-year jump would see him on his snotty cruise. 25 years would give him maybe a position as a flag lieutenant to some high-ranking officer. In other words, the role that Helen Zilwicki has assumed.

He's already around 2.

Goes to the Academy at 17. That's 15 years from the end of the book.

4 years on the Island- that's 19- including snotty cruise since you have to pass it to graduate.

Graduate and you're an Ensign- which is a lot like being a 2nd LT. As long as you don't die, get somebody killed by being extremely stupid or scuff up the Captain's ship badly, you will make LT(jg) shortly thereafter.

It's peacetime. The multi-year deployments of constant convoy duty or deploying until recalled or damaged so severely that you need a yard are over. Snotty cruises will be a year or less because there's no reason to deploy a ship for extended periods away from a base. I figure 6-9 months would be more than adequate time to knock some reality into them and evaluate their possibilities as actual officers rather than just theoretical ones.

Since Silisia is now split between the Manties and the Andies, the traditional pirate hunting grounds where generations of RMN officers were blooded are gone.

On the other hand,I can see similar patrols in what used to be the Verge and Protectorates. Then again, the Mayans, Sollies (eventually), Havenites, Andies, RF (nobody knows that they are part of the MA and they were meant to be a bubble of stability in the chaos of the Solly break up, remember?), and even the Graysons will all be conducting those sort of patrols out there, too. Can you say, "Slim pickings?" I knew you could. There's going to be a whole lot of hunters in that patch. It's a mighty big patch but there's a whole lot of hunters out there beating the bushes, too.

Oh, and Mesa is/was occupied so the slavery business has taken a major hit. I don't see the Havenites, Manties or Torch allowing Manpower Inc to go back in business anytime soon, do you?

Either way, he would be so monumentally junior to basically anyone that he would have to be Johnny On the Spot to have a meaningful impact on the plot line.

Unless RFC kills him off so Honor comes out of retirement with blood in her eye.
Last edited by jtg452 on Sat Dec 12, 2020 2:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What's the Point of Raoul?
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Wed Dec 02, 2020 12:27 pm

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cthia wrote:We must not overlook the possibility of Raoul stepping into Honor's political shoes, there on Grayson and in the Star Kingdom. Think of a Katherine Montaigne with dual citizenship and power.


If she'd died or still does in an upcoming book, sure. With her still alive, recipient of a third generation prolong, he won't have that chance any time soon. Sure, she can delegate to him if he shows aptitude for it.

The character that we've heard from David is that he'd join the navy, so not a politician. But now that everything's changed, maybe his decisions will be different. After all, if his mom is still alive and in the Top 3 Most Celebrated Heroes of the navy, he might want not to join that and constantly get compared to her, or worse, being the recipient of unrequested favours of people trying to get on her good side.
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Re: What's the Point of Raoul?
Post by jtg452   » Wed Dec 02, 2020 4:57 pm

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ThinksMarkedly wrote:If she'd died or still does in an upcoming book, sure. With her still alive, recipient of a third generation prolong, he won't have that chance any time soon. Sure, she can delegate to him if he shows aptitude for it.

The character that we've heard from David is that he'd join the navy, so not a politician. But now that everything's changed, maybe his decisions will be different. After all, if his mom is still alive and in the Top 3 Most Celebrated Heroes of the navy, he might want not to join that and constantly get compared to her, or worse, being the recipient of unrequested favours of people trying to get on her good side.



His Daddy isn't a slouch in that department either, if memory serves. :roll:

I see a Mike Henke redo in the making. There's going to be those that attempt to play the patronage game with him and I just don't see Honors kid being willing to want to play it.
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Re: What's the Point of Raoul?
Post by cthia   » Wed Dec 02, 2020 6:55 pm

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ThinksMarkedly wrote:
cthia wrote:We must not overlook the possibility of Raoul stepping into Honor's political shoes, there on Grayson and in the Star Kingdom. Think of a Katherine Montaigne with dual citizenship and power.


If she'd died or still does in an upcoming book, sure. With her still alive, recipient of a third generation prolong, he won't have that chance any time soon. Sure, she can delegate to him if he shows aptitude for it.

The character that we've heard from David is that he'd join the navy, so not a politician. But now that everything's changed, maybe his decisions will be different. After all, if his mom is still alive and in the Top 3 Most Celebrated Heroes of the navy, he might want not to join that and constantly get compared to her, or worse, being the recipient of unrequested favours of people trying to get on her good side.

I didn't literally mean "step into Honor's shoes."

Why can't he have his own political career. With his special Catlike instincts, he would be great at it. I disagree with the notion Raoul won't play a significant role. I can't believe the author would waste Raoul's unnatural skillset after bothering to set the stage. I can believe even less that Honor gave birth to a son who will be insignificant or lackluster. I'll believe even less than that that that Demon Murphy - prodded by the machinations of the universe - will leave him be either. Besides, all of Honor's offspring may be saddled with Armsmen. That simple fact dispells insignificant in and of itself.

Albeit, a notion of "one bad Harrington apple" is a bit frightening.

Son, your mother says I have to hang you. Personally I don't think this is a capital offense. But if I don't hang you, she's gonna hang me and frankly, I'm not the one in trouble. —cthia's father. Incident in ? Axiom of Common Sense
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Re: What's the Point of Raoul?
Post by jtg452   » Wed Dec 02, 2020 9:56 pm

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cthia wrote:I didn't literally mean "step into Honor's shoes."

Why can't he have his own political career. With his special Catlike instincts, he would be great at it. I disagree with the notion Raoul won't play a significant role. I can't believe the author would waste Raoul's unnatural skills after bothering to set the stage. I can believe even less that Honor gave birth to a son who will be insignificant or lackluster. I'll believe even less that that Demon Murphy - prodded by the machinations of the universe - will leave him be either. Besides, all of Honor's offspring may be saddled with Armsmen. That simple fact dispells insignificant in and of itself.

Although the notion of a "bad" Harrington apple is a bit frightening.


I don't think that he will play an insignificant role in the entire new story arc- just the next couple books because The Original Master Plan had to be altered and the time between the first and second arc is going to be much shorter.

The shorter the jump forward is, the less likely that he will be old enough to plausibly be in a position to have an impact. Junior Tac officers aren't power brokers and neither are very junior Flag Lieutenants no matter who their mommies, daddies and godparents are or who adopted them.

A 50 year jump in a prolong society would have him up to having his own command or maybe even command of a division of significant vessels like BC's or heavy cruisers. Scotty made Captain Senior Grade by the last book and was going to fly his own flag. Basilisk Station was his first deployment after his snotty cruise, so the story arc of 20 some odd years is his entire career and even HE wasn't a flag officer yet through 20 years of war, expansion and attrition of those senior to him.

At the end of the current arc, Raoul is at least 15 years before he can even make it to the Academy and 19 before he's even officially an officer.

A 25 year jump makes him a LT(senior grade)or- maybe, if he's really good and really lucky- a LTCmdr. Peacetime advancement in a prolong society, remember? In a military where, in peace time, at least, seniority is a big factor in promotion. It's not 20 and out in these circumstances, so all of those junior officers at the end of the current books are still active- and senior and experienced. Minimum hitches for enlisted are 10 years, remember?

LT(sg) and LTCmdr are still the lowest ranks of the folks sitting in the chairs along the wall- when they aren't getting coffee and carrying folders- at the meetings where decisions are being made. They are still in the, 'Should be seen but not heard,' category under all but the most extreme of circumstances. Not movers and shakers and if a decision maker wants to hear their opinion, they will ask- but don't hold your breath waiting for it to happen.

A 30 year jump would probably make him a LtCmdr or Cmdr and a department head on a waller or somebody's XO on a light vessel like a cruiser or destroyer. Why? Because there's a LOT of light units and he's going to have to pay his dues just like everybody else. Do you think that his folks would have it any other way?
Last edited by jtg452 on Sat Dec 12, 2020 1:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What's the Point of Raoul?
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Wed Dec 02, 2020 11:52 pm

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cthia wrote:I didn't literally mean "step into Honor's shoes."

Why can't he have his own political career. With his special Catlike instincts, he would be great at it. I disagree with the notion Raoul won't play a significant role. I can't believe the author would waste Raoul's unnatural skillset after bothering to set the stage. I can believe even less that Honor gave birth to a son who will be insignificant or lackluster. I'll believe even less than that that that Demon Murphy - prodded by the machinations of the universe - will leave him be either. Besides, all of Honor's offspring may be saddled with Armsmen. That simple fact dispells insignificant in and of itself.

Albeit, a notion of "one bad Harrington apple" is a bit frightening.


He can have his own career and he can be exceptional at it -- and I do expect that whatever that is, he will be exceptional. The problem is that if he chooses either Navy (either RMN or GSN) or politics, he's going to be eclipsed by the huge shadow cast by both of his parents, especially his mother. However good he is, he won't have either the experience or the seniority, or plainly won't be taken seriously until much later.

He'd have to choose something different to be able to shine at that young age. The plan was that one of the children (Katherine) would find a career in intelligence, which is not something they'd be compared to their parents. That can be a plan for both of them, if they can find other careers, like Foreign Office and Diplomacy.

Otherwise, as jtg452 said, a time jump of less than 30 years will not have either Raoul or Katherine play any significant role. That's the age that Abigail Hearns is right now getting to (she was 27 at the close of UH). With a 30 year jump, Faith or James would be the age that Honor was on OBS, so they could be just coming out of the ATC or equivalent advanced course in the career of their choice.
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Re: What's the Point of Raoul?
Post by cthia   » Thu Dec 03, 2020 1:57 am

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ThinksMarkedly wrote:
cthia wrote:I didn't literally mean "step into Honor's shoes."

Why can't he have his own political career. With his special Catlike instincts, he would be great at it. I disagree with the notion Raoul won't play a significant role. I can't believe the author would waste Raoul's unnatural skillset after bothering to set the stage. I can believe even less that Honor gave birth to a son who will be insignificant or lackluster. I'll believe even less than that that that Demon Murphy - prodded by the machinations of the universe - will leave him be either. Besides, all of Honor's offspring may be saddled with Armsmen. That simple fact dispells insignificant in and of itself.

Albeit, a notion of "one bad Harrington apple" is a bit frightening.


He can have his own career and he can be exceptional at it -- and I do expect that whatever that is, he will be exceptional. The problem is that if he chooses either Navy (either RMN or GSN) or politics, he's going to be eclipsed by the huge shadow cast by both of his parents, especially his mother. However good he is, he won't have either the experience or the seniority, or plainly won't be taken seriously until much later.

He'd have to choose something different to be able to shine at that young age. The plan was that one of the children (Katherine) would find a career in intelligence, which is not something they'd be compared to their parents. That can be a plan for both of them, if they can find other careers, like Foreign Office and Diplomacy.

Otherwise, as jtg452 said, a time jump of less than 30 years will not have either Raoul or Katherine play any significant role. That's the age that Abigail Hearns is right now getting to (she was 27 at the close of UH). With a 30 year jump, Faith or James would be the age that Honor was on OBS, so they could be just coming out of the ATC or equivalent advanced course in the career of their choice.


I understand your notion, but I can't agree in full. Although, I do agree a lot of people will make the same mistake. There is a lot of room on the success ladder between mediocre and Salamander. Raoul won't be living in his mother's shadow any more than any other officer is living in Saganami's or Honor's. Nobody will expect Raoul to be better than Honor, but there is a darn good chance he will be just as good as Honor. And possibly even better, depending on the situation.

Space is huge, and there are plenty of cards remaining in the deck that can be dealt by Murphy for Raoul to cut his teeth on. You mustn't make the mistake of - pardon Honor's expression - idiot newsies . . .

“I know people are going to compare Hypatia to Grayson,” the duchess said, and Megan managed not to blink at the way the older woman’s thought had followed her own. “I suppose that’s inevitable, given the similarities. Of course, the differences are a lot more significant than any of those idiot newsies are going to realize!”

She grimaced, and Megan surprised herself with a chuckle. Arngrim had returned to Manticore with dispatches, accompanying the Hypatian transport carrying the squadron’s survivors, barely two T-days earlier, and she’d already decided she’d rather face a salvo of Cataphracts than the Manticoran news corps any day!

“Better,” the duchess said approvingly, then laid a hand on Megan’s shoulder.

“I had a heavy cruiser to face a single battlecruiser,” she said more soberly. “The tech imbalance was a lot narrower than the one you had, but in a way, that only made the situation simpler. I mean, there weren’t a lot of fancy tactical options. You found a much more…elegant solution, and at least Hypatia doesn’t have steadings.”

Son, your mother says I have to hang you. Personally I don't think this is a capital offense. But if I don't hang you, she's gonna hang me and frankly, I'm not the one in trouble. —cthia's father. Incident in ? Axiom of Common Sense
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Re: What's the Point of Raoul?
Post by tlb   » Thu Dec 03, 2020 10:10 am

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cthia wrote:I didn't literally mean "step into Honor's shoes."

Why can't he have his own political career. With his special Catlike instincts, he would be great at it. I disagree with the notion Raoul won't play a significant role. I can't believe the author would waste Raoul's unnatural skillset after bothering to set the stage. I can believe even less that Honor gave birth to a son who will be insignificant or lackluster. I'll believe even less than that that that Demon Murphy - prodded by the machinations of the universe - will leave him be either. Besides, all of Honor's offspring may be saddled with Armsmen. That simple fact dispells insignificant in and of itself.

Albeit, a notion of "one bad Harrington apple" is a bit frightening.

ThinksMarkedly wrote:He can have his own career and he can be exceptional at it -- and I do expect that whatever that is, he will be exceptional. The problem is that if he chooses either Navy (either RMN or GSN) or politics, he's going to be eclipsed by the huge shadow cast by both of his parents, especially his mother. However good he is, he won't have either the experience or the seniority, or plainly won't be taken seriously until much later.

He'd have to choose something different to be able to shine at that young age. The plan was that one of the children (Katherine) would find a career in intelligence, which is not something they'd be compared to their parents. That can be a plan for both of them, if they can find other careers, like Foreign Office and Diplomacy.

Otherwise, as jtg452 said, a time jump of less than 30 years will not have either Raoul or Katherine play any significant role. That's the age that Abigail Hearns is right now getting to (she was 27 at the close of UH). With a 30 year jump, Faith or James would be the age that Honor was on OBS, so they could be just coming out of the ATC or equivalent advanced course in the career of their choice.

cthia wrote:I understand your notion, but I can't agree in full. Although, I do agree a lot of people will make the same mistake. There is a lot of room on the success ladder between mediocre and Salamander. Raoul won't be living in his mother's shadow any more than any other officer is living in Saganami's or Honor's. Nobody will expect Raoul to be better than Honor, but there is a darn good chance he will be just as good as Honor. And possibly even better, depending on the situation.

Space is huge, and there are plenty of cards remaining in the deck that can be dealt by Murphy for Raoul to cut his teeth on. You mustn't make the mistake of - pardon Honor's expression - idiot newsies . . .

We can hope that RFC will continue writing stories for as long as possible; but Honor's saga has taken about 25 years to get to this point and the next expected books are the one with Eric Flint and a possible story by RFC alone about Honor's father. Perhaps there will be a short story or more about Honor's children, but it is expecting a bit much to hope that RFC with launch a new series. But I can easily be wrong and the fate of the Malign will not be settled before her children come to prominence.
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Re: What's the Point of Raoul?
Post by Kensai   » Thu Dec 03, 2020 11:33 am

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Guys....

Interesting observations and theories. No one know what RFC will do with the characters of Raoul and Kat.... He might not even have a solid plan right now, with how he changed the storyline.

We do know they likely will have roles in future tomes. What roles, we don't know and RFC will tell us when he knows and writes it. :)

I do think there is a possibility that is an outlier- something no one has offered up as an idea for either child.

Service with the Marines or medical fields. Follow in the footsteps of Alfred and or Allison? I mean, both children have been around THEM a lot... and may pick up interest in medical fields.... or either could ask after Granpa's Marine Career and decide he/she/both wanna do *that*

And lets be honest- if either child were to have concerns about being in Honor's shadow, the Corps would cure that. Everyone is Worthless until they get through Boot. And then only semi-worthless.... :)

Kat would have the most trouble in Naval Service as she is female and likely will look a lot like her mom; despite best efforts, expectations will be obnoxiously high (RL history of this, btw, with children of famous officers following footsteps). Raoul with his ability with tree cats, has a lot of possibilities... and in turn, limits BECAUSE of that ability. He may forego anything public and become a Ranger to work MORE with the Treecats....

Katherine... same deal. If she's really bright, Intel or Diplomatic Corps. Medical may be her thing too. Or she may be a tomboy personified and wanna play in the mud. Or even none of it and choose to be a Grayson Woman of Pre-Honor days (doubt that but its an option, albeit super slim.... and slim be on that horse heading out of town).

We don't know where he's gonna go with the characters. Wherever he DOES go, it should be appropriate and be an interesting read.

In any case, I hope RFC gets his writing groove going soon.
John T.

aka The Philosophical Kensai

"Master your craft lest it master you."
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Re: What's the Point of Raoul?
Post by Brigade XO   » Thu Dec 03, 2020 3:46 pm

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I don't see the next 15 to 20 years being all that quiet for RMN and the Grand Alliance.
Sure, the political/pirate problems in Silesia are getting stepped on rather hard at the moment but without a wholesale change of people in positions of power and authority there will still be a lot work out there in both the diplomatic and military sence. Diplomatice in this case "explaining" to people who will take runs at twisting SEM laws and get back to the old methods of making a lot of illegal money out of government

Talbott will be busy but dealing with the League 2.0 and everything that will happen as the nominal blanket of control and semi-rule of law the SLN and League buracracy with OFS used to keep or get systems under their thumbs. Pirates are almost the least of that.

Raoul is going to- based on the end of UH- be growing up on Grayson and he is the designated Steadholder "prince". He's going to get an education not all that different from Abigail learning what is expected and required of a Steadholder. Should be interesting.
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