Second April 7th Question

I just finished, and greatly enjoyed, From the Forest. My impression (having not re-read other Recluce books with chaos-wielding protagonists recently) is that Alyiakal learned a number of fairly advanced techniques (which I have always likened to lasers or energy weapons) quite quickly. I’m curious, if that’s the case, is that more reflective on Alyiakal’s unique talents, or on the benefits of having lots of order-chaos devices around to learn from. I’m also curious if there’s any genetic differences between the Cyadorans and the surrounding nations that affects the prevalence of order-chaos wielders. It seems that Cyador is much more sparsely populated despite their higher technology level and employ a lot of the same techniques as Recluce later does to rely on technology and technique when they are outnumbered.

Alyiakal isn’t really that much different from other Magi’i, nor does he have more in the way of devices or technology to learn from. What he does have is a very good tutor in Master Triamon, who makes Alyiakal really think about how to use chaos, Healer Vayidra, and the experiences of the Great Forest. No other magus has that range of experience. He also has the incentive to learn because he almost instinctively knows that he’ll be killed if he doesn’t. Because most of the inhabitants of Cyador are from the Rational Stars, that means there are definite differences in genetics from the inhabitants of the lands bordering Cyador. With the later fall of Cyador, many of the techniques for dealing with order and chaos are lost or forgotten, and have to be rediscovered, partly in Fairhaven, but largely in Recluce because greater mastery of order is required to fully harness the power of chaos.

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