Shayne's Amoi

by Shayne

First off, let's get the heresy out of the way. As much as I love Yoshihara's concepts and AnK's plot, there is much of the story and her portrayal of the characters that I find disturbing, or just don't care for.

She tends to make sweeping generalizations, then neglects to give the reader any details to back them up. And I find her characters to be one-dimensional in many cases. Let's face it; no matter how much you manipulate the gene pool, a human is a human. Read Frank Herbert if you don't believe me. And Elite or not, Blondie or not, humans are just damn messy creatures with lots of odd personal quirks and a distinct tendency to err.

In my fics, I've tried to explore the main characters' personalities and maybe make them seem a little more real. It's my own interpretation, though, so don't take me too seriously.

Amoi's history

After landing and terraforming are accomplished, the initial city is built and begins to flourish. I'm letting it stay in existence for about 200 years; just long enough for a couple of generations to come and go and for problems to foment.

A schism forms in Amoi's ruling body. The newer generation isn't happy with the older way of doing things; in 200 years, advances have been made in the developed worlds of many galaxies, and they want to bring Amoi out into the intergalactic community.

As a whole, the Amoian colony tends to be insular and slow to change. After 200 years on-planet, there's only one other city besides old Tanagura in existence.

The city slowly becomes an open battle ground. In Part 2, Jupiter refers to the Resistance and its leaders as 'the insurrectionists'. Terrorists would be a better word for it. They don't care who they kill, as long as it gets them what they want.

Paul Stanford is the grandson of the woman from whose initial designs Jupiter was created. He is Captain of Tanagura's militia (the only type of military the original city had besides the badly organized local police), and his loyalty is to Jupiter, not the government. He considers it his duty to protect the city to the best of his ability, and he does.

He and Jupiter decide that the best way to deal with the problem is to cut off the hydra's multiple heads and let the body flail around aimlessly; ie, destroy the Resistance headquarters, killing the leaders, then retake the city. He and a few of his men succeed in planting charges all through the district the Resistance occupies. One goes off early, though, and he's caught in the explosion. Jupiter, being the understanding female we all know and love, evacuates the remaining districts then destroys the city. Ummm... PMS?

The remains of Tanagura migrate to Berangora (the only other city Amoi has at the time) and Jupiter assumes the position she occupies in the anime and book. She completely restructures the government, and, since she can control the remaining androids, reinforces her strictures with electronic muscle.

Tanagura is rebuilt and over three-hundred years, Amoi begins to assume its present shape.

Just as an aside, here's a small blurb about the Ceres rebellion and the creation of the slums: Jupiter had no desire for a repeat of the Old City's insurrection, so she basically cut them loose and left them to their own devices. She looks on those rebels and their descendants as being no better than the terrorists who tore the first Tanagura to pieces, and it shows in the attitudes of both Elites and regular citizens.

DNA and the creation of Amoi's caste system

Jupiter wanted there to be distinct lines between the aristocracy and the middle class. And she wanted the aristocracy to look to her for guidance.

She created her Elite with the genetic strains of Amoi's original settlers woven through their DNA. They were given beauty, brains and physical perfection, but she saved the best traits to bestow on the boys who reminded her of Paul: the Blondies.

Incidentally, on my Amoi, female Elite do exist... though they are rare animals, and created for specific reasons. There is no such thing as a female Blondie.

The middle class don't produce children the old-fashioned way any more than Elites do. Sperm and egg are given to the local genetic lab and manipulated to produce what the parents want. And you have to apply for a license to even be allowed to reproduce. Birth control for both men and women is in the water supply, so that's not an issue.

When Jupiter repudiated Ceres, she cut off everything for them but basic power and plumbing. Their water is fed in from a different source, so they don't get that all-important birth control. Due to Jupiter's manipulation of the gene-pool though, which the denizens of Ceres were part of, back when they were citizens, the people of the slums produce very few girls, and therefore, cannot multiply like rabbits. The population of the slums are kept pretty consistent, due in large part to unwanted children, and the occasional, unexplained pregnancy. Hey, even birth control fails sometimes! Most of the children, though, are 'lab-errors' who either aren't aesthetically pleasing, or don't possess the right coloration.

Katze, in fact, is an example of one of these cast-offs. His parents were fairly well-to-do merchants who wanted a blue-haired boy with silver eyes. The lab screwed up and advised them to try again. He went into a Ceres orphanage.

A word or two on hair/eye color and what it means...

1. In my world, only mongrels can produce a child with black hair... and the only blondes are Elite. I wanted the contrast to be distinct. And so... my theory is that once Jupiter stopped manipulating the genes of the people in Ceres, old, dead traits began to pop up once in a while. Including the one for black hair. A person like Riki, with true blue-black hair and dark eyes, is a rare creature indeed, and as such, immediately draws Iason Mink's attention. When Iason says in Part 2 that he'd never seen anyone like Riki before, he's merely stating a fact.

And that's why you can look at someone with black hair, like Tir, and state, flat-out, that that person is a mongrel.

2. There are also definite parameters for Elite coloration. There are four variations of Elite hair color besides blonde: silver, crimson, sky-blue, and café-au-lait. The colors can be a little darker or lighter, depending on the person, but those are considered 'pure' colors and they are pretty much the sole property of the Elite contingent. Katze is a glaring exception.

The real definitive for looking at someone and deciding whether or not they're Elite, though, is eye color.

Blondie eyes are always some shade of blue. Silver Elites have either blue or green. Blues have gold or silver. Reds have green or gold. And Browns can have any of the above, which makes them a little harder to pinpoint. That's why they started the fashion for long hair, so people wouldn't think them middle-class!

3. The middle class can have pretty much any combination of coloration. Except for black or blonde, of course. They've produced some interesting mutations all on their own, too, since most parents aren't as snobbish as Katze's (or as rich), lavender and sea-green hair amongst them.

Mongrels have, for the most part, varying shades of brown hair and all kinds of eye-color. Red is another typical hair color in the slums, but blue or silver are rarely seen.

4. And now we come to pets. (Annoying little buggers that they are...) They can be either male or female, and, like the middle class, have any color combination that doesn't include black or blonde. They are deliberately created to be pretty, sexual, effeminate (no matter their sex) and dumb as the proverbial plug. You can see why someone like Iason would prefer Riki.

Some basic Amoi facts

For me, Amoi isn't the last word in planetary colonization. Reading my fics, you will find many references to other planets, planetary systems, and galaxies. In the system Amoi occupies, there are six other settled worlds and it has business and cultural dealings with most of them.

I've granted Amoi two satellite colonies: Avara and Gingetkyu. Avara is little more than a large moon, and the settlement there exists only because of a highly valuable ore that can be found very few places in the known universe. It's one Amoi's biggest exports. Gingetkyu is a near planet that, after undergoing atmospheric alteration, proved extremely fertile. Its production is mostly agricultural in nature and it provides Amoi with a great deal of flora and fauna that Amoi's eco-system cannot support.

The day on Amoi has thirty hours and one of their weeks is composed of ten days. Their year is eleven months long, and one month has three weeks. Iason asks Riki in the first chapter of Part 2 if it's Selinar already. That's the sixth month of an Amoian year. I could write out the others, but I don't want to bore you more than I already am...

Elite sexual practices

I know, I know. What Elite sexual practices?! On Shayne's Amoi, sex is off-limits to only the highest of the high: Blondies. It makes it so much more deliciously taboo.

The lesser Elite can screw around all they like, at their own discretion. For them, relationships are the forbidden fruit. As Raoul tells Guy, emotional entanglements occur, but they are frowned on and, something I didn't put in the story, likely to end in mental correction.

So, many Elites maintain a physical relationship with their pets, simply for uncomplicated relief. It's another reason that lots of them keep their harems in Apatia: distance. And perhaps because the critters are cute but aggravating...

The League of Centurions

The army's formation was grounded in Jupiter's desire to prevent another civil war where the government was left with only an ill-equipped militia to defend the city. The Citadel was built alongside the new Tanagura.

Amin Baghera, Paul's SIC (second-in-command), survived the cataclysm that killed his Captain, and became the founding father of the Centurions. Like Paul, his loyalty was solely to Jupiter, not the reigning governor, and the League's ties to the Tower remained strong for almost three centuries.

The Arena

Like any benevolent dictator, Jupiter was always aware that you must keep the natives from becoming restless, or risk the consequences.

About a hundred years after the civil war, the idea for the Arena was brought to her by a favorite of hers, at the time; a shrewd Crimson Elite with clear gold eyes who saw that Amoi's single prison was beginning to overflow. By that time, progress had given the planet two more cities, and with the rise in population, the criminal count increased accordingly.

Why mind-wipe them, he proposed. They only became a burden to the system and the tax-paying citizens. Why not let them kill each other off and make a profit in the process?

Though she disliked the violence of the solution, Jupiter saw the advantages. The human male has always been a blood-thirsty creature. Perhaps this would satisfy that primal urge.

The Arena was built along the lines of a similar ancient earth structure and the men who fought there became the heroes of their time. Ironic.




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