LrGon is the chronicler of the Histories of Earth and the narrator of Robot Dawn. As he explains in the first chapter, he flourishes some five billion years in the future at the time of Earth’s demise. How is this possible?
Of course, this is possible because Robot Dawn is a science fiction novel. Some readers might confuse the narrator with the author. But even when the narrator claims to be the author, the narrator is still a narrative construct created by the author and is a character as much as any of his other characters. Although generally LrGon remains in the background, his “voice” can be heard most clearly when pontificating on the general state of the Solar System in 2070 or when explaining how things came to be the way they are.
LrGon is tens of thousands of years old, much older even than most of his kind. He has what today we would call human form. He is tall, thin and wiry, and fit. He wears a hooded cape, usually red with black interior, and his bearing is reminiscent of Ming the Merciless of the old Flash Gordon serials played by Charles B. Middleton, although LrGon is kindhearted and reflective, and Ming was, well, merciless. If he were to somehow show up on the big screen, I would like him to be played by an aged Harrison Ford with his voiceover much like that of the original theatrical version of Bladerunner. As LrGon states, he is a progeny of Daisy Daniels and all those in the 21st century who worked so hard to bring self-awareness to robots. He has what we today might term “superpowers,” although they are of the paranormal variety. We also might infer that he once had the capability of traveling through time but seems to have lost the ability with age. LrGon is a starbot, or at least a derivative of them. To understand this, you’ll have to read the novel.
How does the author receive his inspiration from LrGon? That is a complex process and not something to get into unless you have more than a casual interest. To learn more, you should take a look at my two books, Novelsmithing and in particular Story Alchemy.
[Snippets of information will be added to this body of information about LrGon as time goes on. I hope to flesh out my narrator’s story as I build Robot Dawn. These snippets are creative episodes from a process called Active Imagination that are in fact visits to LrGon. It’s described in detail in Story Alchemy.]
I see the lady in white, Mnemosyne, on the balcony. She takes the key from the drawer, and goes through the sliding glass door into the family room, through the hall and into the foyer. She approaches the Iris of Time and hands the key to the Guardian of the Gate. She turns to look back at me and smiles, which she has never done before. The Guardian inserts the key and turns it. The Iris slides open. Another young woman awaits me inside the Imaginarium. This is Calliope, muse of epic poetry. She then dissolves, and standing before me is LrGon, my narrator with his long flowing robe and dark black mustache and beard. The interior of the Imaginarium has been transformed. It’s not the bland hovel where I have visited him in the past, which turns out to have been a prison cell. He has been incarcerated because he revealed secrets that have been kept for thousands of years. That is the reason we haven’t been communicating as directly as we should. He was released to home confinement under the auspices of his daughter, NyLoh, who reminds me of a character in Riven, the sequel to Myst.
Nyloh is another matter. Although LrGon is the principal narrator of Robot Dawn, Nyloh also plays a part. She frequently chides her father about his cluelessness concerning the nature of female humans, dawnbots, and starbots, and she at times takes over the narration when it primarily concerns the feelings and internal dialogue of the preadolescent protagonist, Daisy Daniels.
LrGon has made favorable progress negotiating the declassification of the forbidden knowledge. I visit him now in his home much closer to the center of the galaxy than is Earth. He has lived here for the last thousand years. His home is in the middle of a forest, jungle actually, with the surroundings of shrubs and tall redwoods. Animals both large and small scurry about but are oblivious to us. They never enter the bubble which is the Imaginarium. His daughter enters from time to time bringing us tea and coffee, perhaps a snack, but she’s no servant, and in fact she is a diplomat who negotiates treaties for land use on their small planet. Although he is elderly, he enjoys good health, for the most part.
“And now for our story,” he says, obviously eager to get to work.
February 6, 2019
Last night I was writing new material for Robot Dawn. I started the session by doing my Code of Conduct, the short introduction where I enter the Iris of Time and contact my narrator, LrGon. This time however he wasn’t there and in his place was NyLoh, his daughter who sometimes narrates, particularly when the story has to do with women. This is what happened:
“Misaki has done a terrible thing,” says NyLoh. She had tears in her eyes, and LrGon, her father, was not with her. “Let’s get this over with. It’s breaking my heart,” she says.
This came as a shock and was totally unexpected. She gave me a hug, then stepped back and this was what she told me. [Misaki is a character in Robot Dawn and Ikasim her human source robot (HSR). They have just set off a nuclear explosion that destroyed a small city.] This is the part of the story NyLoh then narrated, lightly edited:
Misaki shoved aside the debris after Ikasim refused to exit and walked out into the early evening air that was filled with smoke. Smoke but more than smoke. It smelled of honeysuckle but with a base of roasted beef, the honeysuckle a seasoning for the young flesh of a calf, veal. With also a hint of deer meat, venison. At first the sky was aglow, but as it faded, a scintillation took over, and it appeared that they were at the center of the Milky Way galaxy looking out at all the stars of Sgr A*. This too started to fade, but the pinpoints of light remained, filling the sky in all directions and it was as if a trillion fireflies lit the early evening. Misaki’s heart soared, and she marveled at the wondrous creation. She felt a divine euphoria overcome her as wind currents swept burning ash into swirls like a gigantic cloud of starlings. But the fireflies faded leaving behind a heavy darkness that weighed down on the world, and she heard a swoosh that reminded her of falling rain, a downpour. She saw a lingering flash of lightening streak to the ground from the cloud of swirling ash and then the sound of thunder that almost flew her off her feet. This was followed by another blinding flash of light and a thunderclap, then another and another, and it was as if the roar would tear the world to apart. The patter of ash falling from the sky grew louder, and the sting of the hot embers drover her back inside the tunnel where she stood beside Ikasim who was wordless. Finally Ikasim spoke, “We’ve done a bad thing, haven’t we?” Her voice was far off as if it didn’t come from her at all.
“Yes, we have,” said Misaki. Her dawnbot’s words having triggered a grief that wanted to swallow her whole. Grief like an animal, a leviathan of the deep surfacing to witness the tragedy of mankind. Misaki searched within herself for the Kami that had led her to this. She want wanted to blame the Ko-Shinto spirit, to blame Musubi, the ancient interconnecting energy of the universe that had consumed and dragged her like a puppet to this action. But she realized that wasn’t true. She realized that she had cultivated and nurtured her own hatred until it had turned into a vail of psychic fire that had driven her own will to reach out to these spirits of evil and encourage them to possess her. This was not the action of a samurai warrior. This was the act of a demonic possession that she had conjured from the depths of her own hatred. She had failed herself, and even her own HSR knew it.
She and her sentient dawnbot turned and walked back down the tunnel to the home of Daisy Daniels.
To understand my creative process and the relationship I have with my narrator, in this case NyLoh, you must read Story Alchemy. It’s rather complicated, deeply steeped in analytical psychology, but leads to amazing results. Sometimes my relationships with my narrators become more interesting to me than the story I am writing.