Sometimes, there is such compelling possibilities with a background group or character, that is only briefly mentioned or used as a backdrop in a book, I wish the author had developed them more fully. For example, I’d love to read more about the Zetetic Elench from Iain M. Banks’ Culture series and Quellcrist Falconer and Quellists in Richard K. Morgan’s Takeshi Novaks series (although, I haven’t read Woken Furies yet, perhaps it’s fleshed out more fully there). Read below for quotes that provide some context. If you are reading this and have your own idiosyncratic example(s), please leave them in the comments. Better yet, suggest fan fiction you have found compelling. I have no idea where to start. Thanks!
“The Elench wanted to alter themselves, not others; they sought out the undiscovered not to change it but to be changed by it. The Elencher ideal was that somebody from a more stable society — the Culture itself was a perfect example — could meet some Elencher — Rock, ship, drone or human — on successive occasions and never encounter the same entity twice. They would have changed between meetings just because in the interim they had encountered some other civilization and incorporated some different technology into their bodies or information into their minds. It was a search for the sort of pan-relevant truth that the Culture’s monosophical approach was likely ever to throw up; it was a vocation, a mission, a calling.”—Iain M. Banks, “Excession”
“The personal, as everyone’s so fucking fond of saying, is political. So if some idiot politician, some power player, tries to execute policies that harm you or those you care about, take it personally. Get angry. The Machinery of Justice will not serve you here – it is slow and cold, and it is theirs, hardware and soft-. Only the little people suffer at the hands of Justice; the creatures of power slide from under it with a wink and a grin. If you want justice, you will have to claw it from them. Make it personal. Do as much damage as you can. Get your message across. That way, you stand a better chance of being taken seriously next time. Of being considered dangerous. And make no mistake about this: being taken seriously, being considered dangerous marks the difference – the only difference in their eyes – between players and little people. Players they will make deals with. Little people they liquidate. And time and again they cream your liquidation, your displacement, your torture and brutal execution with the ultimate insult that it’s just business, it’s politics, it’s the way of the world, it’s a tough life and that it’s nothing personal. Well, fuck them. Make it personal.’—Richard K. Morgan, quoting fictional character Quellcrist Falconer in “Altered Carbon”