Background Edit

Episode description Edit

Following a distress call from the Vice-Warden of Contrition's Figure, Seance's correctional facility, the Beloved Dust prepare to enter the building under special circumstances. The gunslinger Fourteen Fifteen checks in with an old friend at The Signal*, and manages to only talk of work, while the Excerpt ⸢Signet⸣ spends time thinking of a past so different from, and yet so close to, the present. Tender Sky, an architect utterly familiar with The Mesh, considers herself ready for what awaits inside the digital environments of Contrition's Figure. But these are strange times. Something has changed in the facility and, worse, perhaps the Beloved Dust aren't the only people interested.

These people, these people,
They’re people, first

This week on Twilight Mirage: Second Street Drifting

The Living Library of Memorious // VOLUME 147χ: The Signal
Publications: Print: Seance: The Signal
Founded in PM 0079 by former explorer Expectancy Saint-Argent, The Signal survived two journalistic crises while establishing itself as a primary source of news for many citizens of Seance and the wider fleet. The paper saw dark times during each, but, steered by the infamously pugnacious Saint-Argent, redoubled in strength each time. Much of its initial editorial team, Saint-Argent included, were not, in fact, residents of Seance, having been born on The Sky Reflected in Mirrors. "It's quite simple," the founder was oft quoted saying. "Growing up in a city where, so often, one is kept in the dark, a child will develop a pertinent sense for the truth."

Cold open Edit

[Primary] Dispatch 93A.

I'll tell you one thing, Satellite. Even now, even with so many of the Divines gone, the Fleet is really good at knowing how to take care of its own. So much of what they do is about understanding what people need and how to get it to them. But I have my doubts, Satellite, if they're any good at understanding people outside of the Fleet.

The Assemblage has this book, Overcoming the Problem of Other Minds. It's… kind of a slog, all about knowledge and selfhood and all of that. The first half is an epistemology textbook meets holy tract, but the second part, it turns, and suddenly it becomes a story, a sort of longform fable. It's about this Divine, or a stand-in for one, anyway, who can't convince someone of his divinity. He tries over and over again to display his power, his knowledge, his technological superiority. But the would-be convert just shrugs.

The lesson, as the Fleet teaches it, is that there are people that you cannot teach, many who do not or will not understand. But they don't know what we do, do they, Satellite?

We know that when someone shrugs at a display of power, at a display of knowledge, at a display of technological superiority, it is not because they do not understand. It is because they are not impressed.

Plot summary Edit

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Poem Edit

The episode concludes with Corrective reciting the poem for which the episode is named.[note 1]

In my dreams I've curved this place
Flat boulevard from funicular
An overhang in the sidewalk patio
Burnt coffee and barbecue and tilted strings
And scaffolding and the inconsistent shoulder rubbing of people
Second street drifting

In my dreams I've curled this place
Around me sitting still on a bench
While many fill the streets
With chatter, swilling drinks
Dancing in the blush of starlight ink
Who do not know how close they are to the one
Who left them drifting

In my dreams I've curbed this place
The By-and-By and by and by
I cruised from temple top to agitprop pinnacle
A stop at each divine:
Retired to statue, retired to shape
Retired to tired symbol of then
To when these people, this fleet
These targets, these echoes of deceit
These simple, happy, joyous folk
These people, these people
They're people, first
Til then, the long days before I came
When they could just be drifting

Cast Edit

Notes Edit

  1. This poem is a transcription taken from the episode; as such, punctuation and line/stanza breaks may be incorrect.

External links Edit

"The Final Eight Divines" · "The Beloved Dust" · "The Last Divine" · "The Planet of Quire" · "Birds of Prey" · "The Sunlight of Knowing" · "We Want You To Come Home" · "Second Street Drifting" · "We are the River, And it is the Sea" · "The Sound of Strings" · "Looking To Land" · "What We're Capable Of" · "The Promise of Presence" · "An Instinct Without A Word" · "The Value of Distance" · "A Life and A History" · "An Approximation of a Connection" · "Like Falling Leaves" · "The Sun Pales to Its Brightness" · "A Single Moment, Caught" · "Bits Left Behind" · "One's Own Right" · "godspeed, glory Pt. 1" · "godspeed, glory Pt. 2" · "godspeed, glory Pt. 3" · "The Miracle of the Mirage: The Dragon" · "The Miracle of the Mirage: The Heist" · "The Miracle of the Mirage: The Siege" · "This Year of Ours: The Scoundrel" · "This Year of Ours: The Pilot" · "This Year of Ours: The Muscle" · "This Year of Ours: The Mechanic" · "This Year of Ours: The Stitch" · "This Year of Ours: The Speaker" · "This Year of Ours: The Mystic" · "This Year of Ours: The Notion" · "Every Bad Idea" · "Along A Route" · "The Good Decision" · "Staying Neutral" · "Like What We Used To Do" · "No Value in a Closed Door" · "Look the Other Way" · "The Center of the Storm" · "The Pathways in the Woods" · "Downtime on Gift-3" · "Every Time We Leave, It Changes" · "Uncontrolled Fires" · "This Place Pushes Back" · "Bona Fide, Good Faith" · "A Very Old Mistake" · "Open As Possible" · "The Second Miracle" · "Our Flaws in a Vacuum, or the Promise We Made To Each Other" · "Downtime on Skein" · "The Vault of Anticipation Pt.1" · "The Vault of Anticipation Pt.2" · "The Siege of the Lineage Brighton Pt. 1" · "The Siege of the Lineage Brighton Pt. 2" · "The Siege of the Lineage Brighton Pt. 3" · "The Restitution of All Things Pt. 1" · "The Restitution of All Things Pt. 2" · "The Feast of Patina" · "Guaranteed Events, Or: An Accounting of the Time When We Built the Machine" · "Futura Free Pt. 1" · "Futura Free Pt. 2" · "Futura Free Pt. 3" · "Futura Free Pt. 4"