Selected Letters/synopsis

From Post-Self

In the years that follow the events of Nevi'im, the members of the Bălan clade send each other letters to stay in touch and keep each other up to date. After convergence, Codrin Bălan#Castor sends a letter to Ioan Bălan stating that ey feels weirdly torn up by the fact that ey sent a fork along to Artemis, Sorina Bălan. Ey posits that striving to individuate so fast meant that there was someone ey cared about immensely and yet had to send away anyway. Worse, though, on Artemis, Sorina will be able to forget, meaning that there may come a day when she forgets Dear, Also, The Tree That Was Felled of the Ode clade and █████. All the same, ey sends a short description of life in Convergence, the area of Castor shared by all five races: the four from Artemis and humanity.

Sorina, meanwhile, worries that there is rather more pressure than less being placed on her by Codrin and her 'exes', as she calls them, and so she requests some space from all three of them, setting up radio silence until she is better able to come to terms with the change. In a further letter, she states that many of those from Castor who have joined Artemis are struggling with overwhelming emotions. It takes them several years to work through their feelings and start to open communications again, and Sorina expands on what life is like aboard Artemis, sending pictures via the new inter-System AVEC.

Meanwhile, Ioan on Lagrange has been meeting up with The Only Time I Know My True Name Is When I Dream of the Ode clade, who is seeming increasingly overworked and worn down in her political endeavors. The instances of True Name on the Launch Vehicles, however, both seem to be unaffected by this: True Name on Castor has changed after convergence, but remains confident and in control of herself and the situations around her, while True Name on Pollux has started the Guiding Council and entered a relationship with Zacharias.

On Pollux, █████ has left the triad, leaving Codrin and Dear feeling crushed and alone. Neither of them are doing well, so Dear's cocladist Serene; Sustained And Sustaining joins them. She had previously been a part of the polycule, but left amicably some years back. Now, however, she rejoins as a way of supporting them and, soon, as a partner. On meeting with █████, Codrin learns that they left because the dynamic had changed over the years. They loved that Codrin had found fulfillment in taking charge of eir life and going into library sciences, just as they loved Serene, but it was not the dynamic that they had fallen in love with. Everyone had changed. They go off to start their own restaurant, while Codrin, Dear, and Serene start to settle into a new normal.

Back on Lagrange, after the events of Mitzvot, Ioan has forked into Aurel Bălan to track an on-again-off-again relationship with Sasha (née True Name) and explains the current status by sending them all a copy of Individuation and Reconciliation, the story that they had written about the events. Much of the explanation of what happened is hidden from Sorina to give her space from the Odists. In this section, ey explains that both True Name#Castor and True Name#Pollux sent Sasha a letter telling her to essentially mind her own business. In a later letter, however, True Name#Castor confides in Sasha, saying that she is not unhappy for Sasha, who has done something that takes courage, and that she will start to prepare the way for Sasha's upcoming book, Ode, which will tell the story of the Ode clade from within, including the story of AwDae.

The four Bălans talk about why it is that the Odists in particular seem to be so entwined with their lives, each wondering if Ioan and Michelle Hadje would have perhaps wound up in a relationship, had they lived contemporaneously. Meanwhile, Ioan has been thinking a lot about Rareș, eir brother back phys-side, and all of the others ask em about eir apparent growing stress over what happened to him, given that ey lost contact after uploading. Codrin#Pollux informs Ioan that ey knows, but will let Ioan discover emself if ey wants. Eir partner, May Then My Name Die With Me, also helps em work through eir feelings, mentioning that immortality makes it difficult to let go of things, or at least too tempting to memorialize in an unhealthy manner.

In the final letter, Ioan, Aurel, May Then My Name, and Sasha all write to tell of a just plain good day. There had been an impromptu cook-out with Douglas Hadje, E.W., Debarre, Marsh, Vos, Time Is A Finger Pointing At Itself, and Where It Watches The Slow Hours Progress. After describing the afternoon, they each write their own letters. May Then My Name is pleased to announce that life is boring in the best possible ways, and that it's nice to start becoming nobodies. Aurel and Sasha are back together after a spate of her overflowing and taking some time to herself. They are incredibly gay for each other and super cute. Finally, Ioan mentions that ey found a book written by Rareș in the library stating that he died several years after Ioan uploaded, and that the book was dedicated to em.