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359 pages, Paperback
First published October 7, 2014
“But if there was one thing any Radchaai considered essential for civilized life, it was tea.”
“What are Radchaai without tea, after all?”
“Because I had once been a ship. An AI controlling an enormous troop carrier and thousands of ancillaries, human bodies, part of myself. At the time I had not thought of myself as a slave, but I had been a weapon of conquest, the possession of Anaander Mianaai, herself occupying thousands of bodies spread throughout Radch space.
Now I was only this single human body.”
“If Athoek Station had any importance at all, it was because the planet it orbited produced tea.���
“You take what you want at the end of a gun, you murder and rape and steal, and you call it bringing civilization. And what is civilization, to you, but us being properly grateful to be murdered and raped and stolen from? You said you knew justice when you heard it. Well, what is your justice but you allowed to treat us as you like, and us condemned for even attempting to defend ourselves?”
“[…] to most Radchaai, human was who they were, and everyone else was… something other.”
A task for Leckie to do if we ever discover time travel— ruthlessly edit (or cut out) that tea plantation endless dragging section.
“It wasn’t what I wanted, not really, wasn’t what I knew I would always reach for. But it would have to be enough.”
When we were nearly there, minutes away from docking, Ship spoke directly into my ear. “Fleet Captain.” It didn’t need to speak to me that way, could merely desire me to know it wanted my attention. And it nearly always knew what I wanted without my saying it. I could connect to Mercy of Kalr in a way no one else aboard could. I could not, however, be Mercy of Kalr, as I had been Justice of Toren. Not without losing myself entirely. Permanently.
It wasn’t what I wanted, not really, wasn’t what I knew I would always reach for. But it would have to be enough.