Stalking Vol 2: The Bridge of Reason
"I get that all of your categories are how Stalkers think, but can’t an average person assess
people in the same ways?"
"To begin with," she said, twisting her lips as if untying a thought, "a Stalker can assess
circumstances in ways that average people can’t, such as through knowing, so it’s not accurate to
say ‘according to how they think.’ That said," she straightened her body, "There is no reason
why you couldn’t make these personality assessments, but you’d be hard pressed to get them
right as long as your beliefs filter them. This doesn’t mean these penchants are bad, or that they
can’t have redeeming applications," she said, anticipating my next question. "They are subjects
to be studied from a particular point of view in order to arrive at another point of view."
"Please," I said with a short sweep of my hand, magnanimously inviting her to continue
plumbing the surprising depths of my ignorance.
"Poor behaviors are a means of exploration, which can have inherently good qualities.
Bigots, for example, usually take the initiative, and one way or another demand that people
conform to their standards. If they have a good head for fundraising, running a charity might do
some good in the world. But I’d check the financial books often," she winked.
"In effect, you’re saying they can’t have redeeming qualities—not to a Stalkers way of
Bonnie gave this question more thought than it deserved before saying, "I use the term
‘redeeming’ in the context of the average person’s cognition, which is to make up for something.
There is no equivalent in the Stalker’s world. If a Stalker screws up, he screws up, the event is
over, and its event-energy has been propelled onward according to the intensity and nature of the
screw up. If a Stalker sees it’s the right thing to do for the right reason, which might also alter an
event’s outcome, that is a separate event with separate energy. The Stalker is not redeeming
anything; it was too late the moment he set the original energy on its way."
Chuckling, I said, "Now you sound like he can redeem himself, he just doesn’t see it that
Unexpectedly, Bonnie reached over and clasped my hand tightly. "You are learning about
energy, not reasoning; energy doesn’t think." She squeezed and let me go. "To a Stalker, making
up for an act is preposterous. He would no more think about redemption than a pope would
consult a psychic."
"I get it, I get it," I said, raising my hands in surrender. "What’s the big deal?"
"The big deal is that you have no idea what you are really like, or how much energy you
have, so you’re not concerned about the damage you can cause by waving someone ahead of you
at a four-way stop." She relaxed her shoulders. "Definitions are problematic because they attempt
to contain ideas for the convenience of our reason, when we are trying to shatter that container.
"It’s a paradox in the training?"
"No. The context of our lessons broadened the moment you left your body; some definitions
simply stopped mattering, and others became assumptions you no longer have to question. It
follows that other terms will change with new experiences so where you’re standing now will not
hold the weight of your reason later on."
"Why would a Stalker bother defining anything—just curious?"
Catherine appeared with our order already split, asked us if there was anything else she
could bring, and left us to our meal.
"Definitions help your reason agree with what is inherently unreasonable to you," Bonnie
said as if no time had passed, "but only as a temporary circumstance." With a poised fork, she