Review – Bribery

Review – Bribery

Bribery fills in a storyline gap.


After writing Reversal, I got to thinking about a missing piece of information.

Barking up the Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Before Days | Bribery

Before Days

Just how – and why – did Yimar and Treve go along with everything? And how did Polloria insinuate herself into the family?


As a prelude story, the information given about the Calafans is pretty sketchy. Chawev, the First Minister, plays a guessing game with his three children, Treve, Yimar, and Chelben. He wants them to guess who’s coming to dinner, quite literally. Bits of background information flow in, that Yipran is comatose, and is being cared for by a Dr. Baden. Baden has helpers, but only one is female. And that’s who’s on her way to join them.

Adding to the background information, their home is filled with the smell of cooking prako. Treve explains that it’s an expensive dish, and Chawev counters that their guest has generously provided it. Further, he tells them that things are going to be different, and they’re going to eat better from then on.  This rather neatly conforms to what Doug and Lili are eventually told during Local Flavor.

When Polloria, the guest of honor, arrives, she comes bearing gifts. There’s a pretty stylus for Treve, who is still, at that point in the timeline, destined for a diplomatic career. Yimar is given a small bracelet, prefiguring the Cuff of Lo gift in Friday Visit, Together, and Temper, and the bracelet for Melissa in Fortune.  Chelben, who is still a rather small child, is given a stuffed linfep toy. Treve and Yimar, at least, see through Polloria, at least in her efforts to insinuate herself into the family. As for her ambition to become the new High Priestess, that part is mentioned but they don’t seem to realize just how far she will go, or how far she has already gone.

Story Postings


The story is Rated K.


I like the little glimpse into Calafan life, including the use of a fork, which prefigures a small plot point in Reversal.

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Posted by jespah in Fan fiction, In Between Days series, Review, 1 comment

Portrait of a Character – Yipran I

Portrait of a Character – Yipran I

Yipran I now has a fate which differs from my original idea.


As I wrote Reversal, I needed a character who would, in our universe, be someone who the natives would mimic with Lili. In the Mirror Universe, she would be mimicked by Jennifer. She would be mother to Treve, Yimar, and Chelben. Enter Yipran.


I like Susan Sarandon for Yipran.

Barking Up the Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Susan Sarandon as Yipran I (image is for educational purposes only)

Susan Sarandon as Yipran I (image is for educational purposes only)

The actress is tough and smart, and is an Oscar winner.

She can play all manner of characters. Hence I feel she would easily be able to show a Yipran who is not yet healed. Yet she would also be one who is, in dreams, the spiritual leader of her people.


Barking Up the Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Susan Sarandon as Yipran I (image is for educational purposes only)

Susan Sarandon as Yipran I (image is for educational purposes only)

Intelligent but damaged, High Priestess Yipran never fully recovers from what Chawev, Baden, and Polloria do to her. Essentially, by poisoning her with an excessive amount of potassium, they have cut off her dreams and eventually she becomes comatose.

In Bribery, Yimar and Treve express the desire to visit her in the main hospital, but are thwarted, as Chawev wants to bring in Polloria as their new stepmother – despite the fact that Yipran is far from dead.

By the time of Friday Visit, Yipran is slowly recovering, but her damage remains. In Fortune, she can speak clearly in dreams, but not during waking life.



In both universes, Yipran is the victim of her husband. He attempts to do her in, in order to pave the way for the ambitious vixen, Polloria. Treve, their eldest son, reveals in Together that Chawev and Yipran really can’t divorce, as no one wants to believe that the First Minister and the High Priestess would ever not have a perfect marriage.

Mirror Universe

Barking Up the Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Susan Sarandon as MU Yipran I (image is for educational purposes)

Susan Sarandon as MU Yipran I (image is for educational purposes)

Just as in the prime universe, Yipran is the High Priestess of the Calafan people. As such, she is their spiritual leader, although her husband is their political leader.

In the mirror, Yipran’s life ends near the end of Reversal, as Polloria and Polloria’s cronies kill her. Hence her daughter, Yimar, succeeds her.


“Yes, and my time will be up soon anyway. But you will continue on, as planets form and die and break apart and become new things, you will watch. And as lives begin and end, you will bear witness. {And} when the last atom has been blown apart in the remnants of the Big Bang, as the last of the energy converts to dark matter, and the universe hits absolute zero, you will be there. And you will watch it, and go with it, as it turns onto itself, and again renews, in an endless cycle. For when it is all dark matter, and it has all recompressed, as it passes through another septum, one that does not yet exist, and it goes to another place, crossing another pond, there will be another Big Bang. As there have been countless ones before, there will be countless ones after.”


Yipran spends a lot of time as a victim. However, that’s one of the main drivers of the plot in Reversal. At some point, I might write more of an origin story for her. Yet right now that is very much on the back burner.

Posted by jespah in Hall of Mirrors, In Between Days series, Portrait, 6 comments