The two small comments in italics in rectangular brackets
Here are some passages from the Star Wars SF novel ``Jedi
Search'', 1994, by Kevin J. Anderson (ISBN 0-553-29798-8).
Being an INTP myself, I
seriously think that the character Qwi Xux as depicted below is an
excellent, and thoroughly appealing, example of an INTP person.
In the novel, the story line goes that Qwi Xux has been malignantly
brainwashed by the ``bad'' party into this behaviour; I think however
that INTP people simply have these characteristics naturally
built-in. INTPs in my opinion really tend to be naive and
oblivious in this way; this naiveté however is in my opinion simply the
other-side-of-the-coin of the capacity of INTPs for technical and
scientific analysis and design. INTPs cannot not be impartial, and
cannot not be desinterested in the ``moral'' purposes their ideas are
put to, in the same way as ENTJs cannot not be leaders. Expecting
an INTP to become less ``naive'' in my (naive) opinion hampers the
effectiveness of the INTP at scientific work.
[ ] are added by me, and are not in the original.
The two small comments in italics in rectangular brackets
HAN SOLO seemed to be drowning in a syrup of nightmares. He could not
escape the drugged and painful interrogation, as the hardened and
porcelain-beautiful face of Admiral Daala stared at him and pummeled him with
``Just put him over there,'' a woman's trilling voice said. Not Daala.
His body was being dragged like luggage across a floor.
``We have been ordered to stand guard,'' said a fuzzed voice filtered through a stormtrooper helmet.
``Stand guard, then, but do it outside my lab. I want to talk to him in peace.'' The woman's voice again.
``For your own protection --'' the stormtrooper began. Han felt himself dropped to the floor. His limbs didn't seem to remember how to bend.
``Protection ? What is he going to do -- he doesn't seem to have the energy to sneeze. If you left any unscrambled memories in his head, I want to pick at them without any interference.''
Han felt himself hauled upright again, his arms wrapped around him. Cold, smooth stone pressed against his back. ``Yes, yes,'' the woman's voice said, ``chain him to the column. I'm sure I'll be safe. I promise to stay out of reach of his fangs.''
He heard the marching boots of stormtroopers leaving the room. His mind became active long before his body figured out how to respond. He remembered parts od the interrogation, but not at all of it. What had he told Admiral Daala ? His heart began pounding harder. Had he divulged any crucial secrets ? Did he even know any crucial secrets ?
He was fairly certain he had told her the basic events about the fall of the Empire and the rise of the New Republic -- but that caused no harm, and it might even lead to benefits. If Daala knew she had no chance, perhaps she would surrender. And if banthas had wings ...
His eyes finally opened grudgingly, letting light slam inside. He flinched away from returning vision, but eventually his eyes focused. He found himself in a spacious room, some kind of laboratory or analysis center, not his detention cell on the Gorgon. He heard singing and the sound of flutes.
Han turned his head to see a willowy alien woman standing in front of a device that seemed to be a combination musical instrument and data-entry pad. He had heard her voice arguing with the stormtrooper. She hummed a complex string of notes as her fingers played on the musical keys; in front of her a rotating blueprint of a three-dimensional triangular shape took form, like a shard of glass capped with a tetrahedron and some sort of energy pod dangling from the lower point. With each tone the woman processed, additional lines appeared on the complicated diagram.
Han worked his tongue around in his mouth and tried to talk. He meant to say, ``Who are you ?'' but his lips and vocal chords would not cooperate. The sounds came out more like ``Whaaaaa yuuuurrrr ?''
Startled, the female alien fluttered her slender hands around the 3-D geometrical image. Then she pranced over to where Han lay. She wore a badge on her smock, imprinted with her likeness and glittering holograms of the kind used for cypher-locks.
She was an attractive humanoid, tall and slender, with a bluish tint to her skin. Her gossamer hair seemed like strands of pearlescent feathers. When she spoke, her voice was high and reedy. Her eyes were wide and deep blue, carrying an expression of perpetual astonishment.
``I've been waiting for you to wake up !'' she said. ``I have so many questions to ask you. Is it true that you actually set foot on the first Death Star [a super-weapon that can destroy entire planets -- MR], and you got a look at the second one while it was under construction ? Tell me what it was like. Anything you can remember. Every detail would be like a treasure trove to me.''
The babbled questions came at him too quickly to assimilate. What did the Death Star have to do with anything ? That was ten years ago !
Instead, Han focused his gaze past her. Pastel gases glowed on the other side ofthe broad windows, swirling around the insatiable mouths of the black holes. He counted all four Star Destroyers in orbital formation high above. That meant he must be somewhere in the little cluster of planetoids in the center of the gravitational island.
And he was alone. Neither Kyp nor Chewbacca had ended up here with him. He hoped they had at least survived Daala's vicious interrogation. He worked his mouth, trying to form words again. ``Who are you ?''
The alien woman touched her badge with one of her long-fingered hands. ``My name is Qwi Xux. And I know that you are Han Solo. I've read a hardcopy of the debriefing you gave Admiral Daala.''
Debriefing ? Did she mean the interrogation, the torture chair that made his entire body spasm ?
Qwi Xux's entire demeanor seemed superficial and distracted, as if she were paying only a small amount of attention to details while she kept her mind preoccupied with something else. ``Now then, please tell me about the Death Star. I'm very eager to hear what you remember. You're the first person I can talk to who was actually there.''
Han wondered if the interrogation drugs were still muddling his brain, or if there was a reason why someone should want him to talk about the defunct Death Star. And why should he tell this Imperial scientist anything anyway ? Had he divulged anything important to Daala ? What if she took her four Star Destroyers and attacked Coruscant ?
``I've already been interrogated.'' He was plased to hear his words come out clearly enough to be understood this time.
In one buish hand Qwi held up a short printout. ``I want your real impressions about it,'' she continued. ``What did it sound like ? What did it feel like when you walked down the corridors ? Tell me everything you can remember.'' She wrung her hands in barely restrained excitement.
His response apparently shocked Qwi enought that she took a step backward and let out a startled musical squawk. ``You have to ! I'm one of the top scientists here.'' Her mouth hung partly open in confusion. She began to pace around the pillar where he had been bound, forcing Han to turn his head. The effort nearly made him pass out.
``What good does it do to withhold information ?'' Qwi asked. ``Information is for everyone. We build on the knowledge we have, add to it, and leave a greater legacy for our successors.''
Qwi struck him as being impossibly naive. Han wondered how long she had been sheltered in the middle of the black hole cluster. ``Does that mean you share your information with anyone who asks ?''
Qwi bobbed her head. ``That's the way Maw Installation works. It is the foundation of all our research.''
Han barely managed a grin of triumph. ``All right, then tell me where my friends are. I came in here with a young man and a Wookiee. Share that information with me, and I'll see what I can remember about the Death Star.''
Qwi's uneasy reaction told him that she had never before considered anythng but clear-cut cases. ``I don't know if I can tell you that,'' she said. ``You don't have a need to know.''
Han managed a shrug. ``Then I see how much your own code of ethics means to you.''
Qwi glanced toward the door, as if contemplating whether to summon the stormtroopers after all. ``It is in my charter here as a researcher that I have access to all the data I need. Why won't you answer my few simple questions ?''
``Why won't you answer mine ? I never signed your charter. I'm under no obligation to you.''
Han waited, fixing his eyes on her as she fidgeted. Finally, Qwi pulled out her datapad and hummed as she keyed in a request.
She looked at him with wide deep-blue eyes that blinked rapidly. Her hair seemed like a glittering waterfall of fine down spilling to her shoulders. When she whistled again, the datapad gave a response.
``Your Wookiee companion has been assigned to a labor detail in the engine-maintenance sector. The physicist formerly in charge of concept development and implementation always swore by Wookiee laborers. He had about a hundred of them taken from Krashyyyk and brought to the Installation when it was formed. We don't have many left. It's hard and dangerous work there, you know.''
Han shifted his position, still finding it difficult to move. He heard rumors that Wookiee slaves had been put to work during the actual construction of the first Death Star. But Qwi spoke of these things with simple frankness.
``What about my other friend ?'' Han asked.
``Someone named Kyp Durron -- is that him ? He is still aboard the Gorgon in the detention area, high security. I don't see much of a report from his debriefing, so apparently he didn't have much to tell them.''
Han frowned, trying to assess the information, but Qwi became animated again. ``All right, I've shared the information you wanted. Now tell me about the Death Star !'' She stepped closer to him but remained well out of reach.
Han rolled his eyes but saw no reason not to. The Death Star had been destroyed long ago, and the plans were safely locked inside the protected data core of the former Imperial Information Center.
Han told Qwi about the corridors, the noises. He knew the most about the hangar bay, the detention area, and the garbage masher, but she didn't seem much interested in those details.
``But didn't you see the core ? The propulsion systems ?''
``Sorry. I was just running interference while someone else knocked out the tractor-beam generators.'' Han pursed his lips. ``Why are you so interested in all this anyway ?''
She blinked her eyes. ``Because I designed most of the Death Star !''
Before she could notice Han's shocked reponse, she trotted over to the near wall and worked a few controls that turned a section of the metal plating transparent. Suddenly a dizzying panorama replaced his narrow view of the bright gases. He could see the other clustered rocks that made up Maw Installation.
``In fact, we've still got the prototype Death Star right here at the Installation.''
As Qwi spoke, a gigantic wire-frame sphere as large as any of the asteriods rose behind the shortened horizon of the nearest planetoid like a deadly sunrise. The prototype looked like a giant armillary sphere, circular rings connected at the poles and spread out for support. Nested in the framework and superstructure hung the enormous reactor core and the planet-destroying superlaser.
``This is just the functional part,'' Qwi said, staring out the window with admiration in her eyes. ``The core, the superlaser, and the reactor, without a hyperdrive propusion system. We didn't see any need to add the structural support and all the housing decks for troops and administrators.''
Han found his voice again. ``Does it work ?''
Qwi smiled at him, her eyes sparkling. ``Oh yes, it works beautifully !''
Looking at the delicate, birdlike Qwi Xux, Han somehow could not imagine her as the developer of the Death Star. But she worked willingly in the Maw Installation, and she had admitted her role in a matter-of-fact way. ``What's a nice girl like you doing in a place like this ?''
``This is what I do. This is what I'm best at.'' Qwi nodded her head absently, as if considering an answer. ``Here I have a chance to grapple with the greatest mysteries of the cosmos, to solve problems that others have claimed are unsolvable. To see my wild ideas take shape. It's very thrilling.''
Han still could not understand. ``But how did this happen to you ? Why are you here ?''
``Oh, that !'' Qwi said, as if suddenly understanding the question. ``My home planet was Omwat, in the Outer Rim. Moff Tarkin took ten young Omwati children from various cities. He placed us in intense forced-education camps, trying to mold us into great designers and problem solvers. I was the best. I was the only one who made it through all the training. I was his prize, and he sent me here as a reward.
``At first I worked wit Bevel Lemelisk to bring the Death Star to fruition. When we had the blueprints completed, Tarkin took Bevel away, leaving me to create newer and better concepts.''
``Okay,'' Han said, ``so I'll ask again, why do you do this stuff ?''
Qwi looked at him as if he had suddenly grown stupid. ``It's the most interesting thing I can imagine. I have my pick of the challenges, and I'm usually successful. What more could I want ?''
Han knew he wasn't getting through. ``How can you enjoy working on things like that ? it's horrible !''
Qwi took another step backward, looking baffled and hurt. ``What do you mean by that ? It's fascinating work, if you think about it. One of our concepts was to modify existing molecular furnace devices into autonomous `World Devastators' that could strip raw materials from a planet's surface, feed it into huge automated onboard factories, and produce useful machines. We're quite proud of that idea. We transmitted the proposal off to Tarkin shortly after he took Bevel with him.'' Her voice trailed off. ``I wonder what ever happened to that idea.''
Han blinked in astonishment. The terrifying fleet of World Devastators had attacked Admiral Ackbar's home planet, laying waste part of the beautiful water world vefore the juggernauts were destrroyed. ``The World Devastators have already been built,'' Han mumbled, ``and put to very efficent use.''
Qwi's face lit up. ``Oh, that is beautiful !''
``No, it isn't !'' he shouted into her face. She sprang back. ``Don't you know what your inventions are being used for ? Do you have any idea ?''
Qwi backed off, straightening up again defensively. ``Yes, of course. The Death Star was to be used to break up dead planets to allow direct mining of the heavy metals trapped in the core. The World Devastators would be autonomous factories combing asteroids or sterile worlds to produce a wide range of items without polluting inhabited planets.''
Han snorted and rolled his eyes. ``If you believe that, you'll believe anything. Listen to their names ! Death Star, World Devastator -- that doesn't sound like something for peacetime economic development, does it ?''
Qwi scowled and turned her back on it. ``Oh, what difference does it make ?''
``The Death Star's first target was the planet Alderaan -- my wife's home world ! It murdered billions of innocent people. The World Devastators were turned loose on the inhabited world of Calamari. Hundreds of thousands of people died. Those efficient factories of yours manufactured TIE fighters and other weapons of destruction, nothing else.''
``I don't believe you.'' Her voice did not sound confident.
``I was there ! I flew through the rubble of Alderaan, I saw the devastation of Calamari. Didn't you read about it in my interrogation report ? Admiral Daala pressed me over and over again for those details.''
Qwi crossed her slender bluish arms over her chest. ``No, that wasn't in your debriefing which you so melodramatically call an `interrogation.' ''
``Then you didn't get the whole report,'' Han said.
``Nonsense. I'm entitled to all data.'' She stared at her feet. ``Besides, I only develop the concepts. I make them work. If someone on the outside abuses my inventions, I can't be held responsible. That's beyond the scope of what I do.''
Han made a noncommittal sound, simmering with anger. Her words sounded rehearsed, like something that had been drilled into her. She didn't even seem to think about what she was saying.
Qwi flitted back to her 3-D display panel, tapping on the musical keys and humming to sharped the long, angular image she had been constructing when Han opened his eyes. ``Would you like to see what I'm working on now ?'' Qwi asked, studiously avoiding any mention of the previous discussion.
``Sure,'' Han said, afraid that when she no longer needed to talk to him, Qwi would send him back to his detention cell.
She gestured to the image of the small craft. Four-sided and elongated, it looked like the long shard of a firefacet gem. From the diagram he could see a pilot's compartment with space enough for six people. Small lasers studded strategic areas; the bottom of the long point carried a strange toroidal transmitting dish.
``Right now we're working on enhancing the armor,'' Qwi said. ``Though the craft is not much larger than a single-man fighter, we need it to be completely impervious to attack. By introducing quantum-crystalline armor, where only a few layers of atoms are stacked as densely as physics permits, laminated on top of another thin film just as tough but phase shifted, we can be confident that nothing will harm it. Not so much as a dent.''
Han nodded to the laser emplacements; he couldn't see well from his vantage chained against a support pillar. ``Then why add the weaponry if the ship is indestructible ?'' He had visions of a fleet of these things replacing the TIE fighters; a small force of indestructible assault craft could fly into any New Republic fleet and carve the ships up at their leisure.
``This craft is highly maneuverable, and small enough not to be noticed on a systemwide scan, but they still might encounter some resistance. Remember, the Death Star was the size of a small moon. This accomplishes through finesse what the Death Star brought about through brute force.''
With a cold fear inside Han did not want to know the answer to his next question. How could she compare this small ship to the Death Star ? But he coudn't stop himself from asking, ``And what is it ? What does it do ?''
Qwi looked at the image with awe, pride, and fear. ``Well, we haven't actually tested it yet, but the first full-scale model is basically completed. We call this concept the Sun Crusher, tiny but immensely powerful. One small, impervious craft launches a modulated resonance projectile into a star, which triggers a chain reaction in the core, igniting a supernova even in low-mass stars. Straightforward and simple.''
In his horror, Han could think of nothing to say. The Death Star destroyed planets, but the Sun Crusher could destroy whole solar systems.
HUNCHED in his dark robes, Tol Sivron came to visit Qwi Xux in her
research room. He drew in a long, hissing breath, and his head-tails twitched
with uneasiness as he stared at her setup. The Twi'lek administrator gave the
impression of never having set foot inside an actual laboratory before --
which seemed odd to Qwi, since he was in charge of the entire installation.
Qwi stopped her musical calculation with an atonal squawk. ``Director Sivron ! What can I do for you ?''
Tol Sivron demanded regular written reports, feasibility studies, and progress summaries; he hosted a weekly meeting among the scientists to share their ideas and their work in a frank and stimulating exchange.
But Tol Sivron did not make a habit of visiting.
He shuffled around to the room, poking at things, kneading his knuckles, and looking at the standard equipment as if deeply interested. He brushed his clawed fingertips over the calibrating gauge of a weld-stress analyzer, muttering, ``Mmm hmmm, good work !'' as if Qwi herself had invented the common instrument.
``I just came to commend you for your consistently fine efforts, Dr. Xux.'' Sivron stroked one of the vermiform head-tails draped around his neck; then his voice grew stern. ``But I hope you are about finished with your endless iterations on the Sun Crusher project. We're past Grand Moff Tarkin's target date, you know, and we must move soon. I insist you write your final report and get all the documentation in order. Submit it to my office as soon as possible.''
Qwi blinked at him in annoyance. She had submitted five separate ``final'' reports already, but each time Sivron had asked her to rerun a particular simulation or to retest the structural welds in the Sun Crusher's quantum armor. He never gave any reasons, and Qwi got the impression that he never read the reports anyway. If it had been up to her, the Sun Crusher would have been ready for deployment two years ago. She was getting bored with it, wanting to move on to a new design she could start from scratch and get back to the enjoyable, imaginative work again.
``You'll have the report by this evening, Director Sivron !'' She would just send a repeat of the last one.
``Good, good,'' Sivron said, stroking his head-tail again. ``I just wanted to make sure everything is in order.''
For what ? Qwi thought. We're not going anywhere. She hated it when the administrators and the military types kept sticking their noses in her work. Without another word Tol Sivron left.
Qwi stared after him, then activated the rarely used privacy lock on her door. Returning to her imaging terminal, she continued trying to crack the wall of passwords in front of her. She did like challenges, after all.
Qwi could not stop thinking about what Han Solo had told her. At first it was a new puzzle to solve, but then she finally began paying attention. To her all the prototypes she developed were abstract concepts turned into reality through mathematical music and brilliant intuitions. She kept telling herself that she did not know, or care, what her intentions were used for. She could certainly guess, but she tried not to. She didn't want to know ! She blocked those thoughts before they could surface. But Qwi Xux wasn't stupid.
The Death Star was supposed to be used to break apart depleted, dead planets to provide access to raw materials deep in the core. Right ! Had she thought up that excuse afterward ? The World Devastators were supposed to be immense wandering factories taking useless rubble and fabricating scores of valuable industrial components. Right ! Tarkin had been with her during the immense pressure of her orginal training. She knew what the man was capable of.
And the new Sun Crusher was -- ``What ?'' Han had said, raising his voice so that it hurt her fragile ears. ``What in all the galaxy could the Sun Crusher be used for other than to completely wipe out all life in systems the Imperials don't like ? You don't even have a bogus exuse like rubble mining. The Sun Crusher has one purpose only: to bring death to countless innocent people. Nothing more.''
But Qwi could not possibly have the responsibility for lives on her hands. That wasn't part of her job. She just drew up blueprints, toyed with designs, solved equations. It exhilarated her to discover something previously condidered impossible.
On the other hand, she was perfectly aware of what she was doing ... though feigned [??? - MR] naiveté provided such a nice excuse, such a perfect shield against her own conscience.
In the Maw databanks Qwi had discovered the complete ``debriefing'' of Han Solo -- protected by a password she had easily broken -- full video instead of just a transcription. Sivron and Daala had indeed kept much of it from her -- but why ?
As Qwi watched the entire torture session, she could not believe her eyes. She had never suspected the information had been taken from him in that manner ! The words on paper seemed so cool and cooperative.
But on a deeper, professional level she was outraged at Admiral Daala. Access to data was supposedly open to all Maw scientists. She had never been denied a single information request in twelve years inside the black hole cluster ! But this was even worse. She hadn't just been denied access to the full report -- she had been deceived into thinking Han's debriefing held no more data.
But information is meant to be shared ! Qwi thought. How can I do my work if I don't have the pertinent data ?
Qwi had little touble breaking through the various passwords. Apparently, no one had expcted her to bother looking. [...]
HAN ROLLED over with a groan in the detention cell. The
hard ridges on the surface of his bunk -- Han thought of them
as ``discomfort stripes'' -- made sleep itself a nightmare.
He awoke from a dream about Leia, perhaps the only enjoyment he had experienced in three weeks. The dim reddish light filtered down, hurting his eyes without providing useful illumination.
He blinked his eyes open, hearing people move outside his cell door, the clank of stormtrooper boots on the floor gratings, muffled voices. The cyberclock clicked as someone activated the password code.
He sat up, suddenly alert. His body ached, his mind still buzzed from the interrogation drugs, but he tensed as the door opened. He had no idea what this was, but he felt certain he wouldn't like it.
Corridor light flooded in, and Qwi Xux stood beside an armed stormtrooper. She looked battered and abused by her own thoughts, which gave Han a smug grin. He hoped she had lost a lot of sleep after learning of the devastating use to which he inventions had been put. She might be able to fool herself, but she coudn't fool him.
``What, have you come back to discuss a few more moral ussues, Doc ? Am I supposed to be your conscience ?''
Qwi crossed her pale-bluish arms over her chest. ``Admiral Daala has given me permission to interrogate you again, '' she said coldly, though her body language did not match her tone. She turned to the guard, her pearlescent hair sparkling in the dim corridor. ``Would you accompany me inside for the interrogation, Lieutenant ? I'm afraid the prisoner might not cooperate.''
``Yes, Dr. Xux,'' the guard said, following her into the cell. He slid the door partially closed behind him.
While his back was turned, Qwi withdrew a blaster from the utility pocket on her smock, pointed it at the guard, and fired a stun blast. Rippling arcs of blue fire surrounded him, then faded as he crumpled to the floor.
Han leaped to his feet. ``What are you doing !''
Qwi stepped over the fallen stormtrooper. The previous day she had seemed more fragile; the Imperial-issue heavy blaster pistol looked huge in her delicate hand. ``Admiral Daala is mobilizing this entire fleet in less than a day. She plans to take the Sun Crusher and her four Star Destroyers to wipe out the New Republic. Your friend Kyp Durron is also scheduled for termination this afternoon.'' She raised her feathery eyebrows. ``Does that add up to enough of an excuse to escape as soon as we can ?''
Han's mind reeled. At the moment all he could think of was seeing Kyp and Chewbacca again, then getting back to Coruscant so he could be reunited with Leia and the twins. ``I don't have any appointments I couldn't be persuaded to cancel.''
``Good,'' Qwi said. ``Any questions ?''
Han smirked as he began to pull on his disguise of stormtrooper armor. ``No, I'm used to doing this sort of thing.''