Twenty Questions from Harlequin: Cats’ Answers

Please answer all questions to the best of your ability— write what you believe. (Flip and sassy answers are entertaining but seldom useful for these purposes. False answers designed to mislead me and protect your identity will waste our time, and annoy the pig.) I will keep the answers in strictest confidence. If a question seems ambiguous, choose an interpretation and answer that. Answers may be as long or short as you deem appropriate. You need not be sober when answering these questions: in vino veritas. If you find yourself considering “I don’t know” for an answer, try thinking of all the answers you would disagree with until you find something acceptable to yourself.

  1. What’s your favourite colour?

    Blue. Midnight blue when I can get it.

  2. What do you want to wear at your next costume party?

    Wizard’s robes, covered in formulae from thaumaturgy and physics. With a pointy hat.

  3. Under what circumstances, if any, would you sacrifice your life?

    If I had excellent reason to believe I’d be happier afterward, whatever condition I was going to be in.

  4. What do you like or dislike about traveling?

    Packing is a pain. And I have to get someone to take care of my cats. For that matter, I really miss my cats, but they hate traveling too so I’m not about to bring them along, especially given my professional reasons to travel. And airline food is terrible. It’s kind of nice to find the nightclubs in a new city, though, but I’m always having to watch my back there even more than usual.

  5. What makes life worthwhile for you?

    Learning how things work and applying my knowledge. Fixing things that are broken. Coming up with better ways to do boring or impossible or impractical things.

  6. What’s the best thing you’ve ever done?

    Saved a lot of lives throwing healing magic around down at the clinic is probably ahead of the occasional threat I’ve removed as a shadowrunner.

  7. Do you want to study warfare or magic?


  8. What’s your favourite number?

    Five. It turns up in magic over and over again. Though three is pretty nice, too.

  9. How do you believe the universe works?

    There’s a set of rules governing the fundamental operation of everything, though they may be funky enough that it’s impossible to model any meaningful volume of space rigorously.

    These rules manifest in a variety of fascinating ways— we still have no idea what the physics of magic is. Nature spirits seem to exist even without a shaman to call them up (since they have been observed to spontaneously manifest), but some trick of psychological orientation makes Hermetics incapable of conjuring and controlling them. (Elementals may or may not exist without a mage to conjure them; it's hard to tell.)

  10. What sort of education have you acquired, and how? Did you enjoy the process?

    College was fun. I loved absorbing all the ideas that anyone had to teach, and playing with them in projects to really get my hands dirty with them. Some of the academic bullshit was annoying, but I can hack it for all the goodies there are to learn.

  11. Is there a great figure from mythology, literature, history, or the media that you identify with? If so, which?

    I liked Richard Feynman, who is damn near a mythic figure in physics. He was incredibly effective at coming up with new paradigms without being bound to tradition.

  12. What kinds of animal do you like to spend time with? Why?

    Cats. They understand me, I understand them. They don’t lie to you, they don’t hold grudges for perceived slights, they don’t suck up to you because they’ve been genetically programmed to be slaves. You have to earn a cat’s respect.

  13. What’s the worst thing you’ve ever done?

    Signed away my life to a corporation in exchange for a scholarship.

  14. Why are you running the shadows?

    I can’t hold down a legitimate job while I’ve got a corporation looking for me... and I don’t have to get out of bed in the morning most days. I get to learn all kinds of neat things and occasionally fix something that needs fixing.

  15. Under what circumstances, if any, would you betray your friends?

    If they betrayed me first.

  16. What’s your best party trick or show-off stunt?

    Well, the area-effect Ram spell is pretty showy, and it does a nice job of making opponents less lethal without hurting them much (though go-gangers can get a good deal of road rash that way).

  17. What manner of dying do you fear most?

    Any death by slow, painful torture goes to the top of my list. Being very slowly eaten alive by numerous small creatures would be worse than merely a slow dissolution in acid, I think.

  18. What do you expect to experience after you die?

    I’m really not sure. I can’t discard the notion that I’ll dissolve away into nothingness at death and experience nothing at all, but I’m hoping to permanently project my spirit to some metaplane or other. I’m open to surprises, though.

  19. Is there an aspect of yourself you would like to change or part with? If so, what?

    Part of me wants to get out of the shadows and stop being paranoid, but I’m not sure that’s a survival trait. Getting rid of the need to be paranoid would be nice.

  20. How would you like to retire?

    All extant charges against me dropped, a tenured professorship at MIT&T with lots of enthusiastic students ready to help out with research, and some hefty grant money.