Endymion (Hyperion Cantos)

Endymion (Hyperion Cantos)

infobox Book |
name = Endymion
title_orig =
translator =

image_caption =
author = Dan Simmons
illustrator =
cover_artist =
country = United States
language = English
series = Hyperion Cantos
genre = Science fiction novel
publisher = Headline Book Publishing
pub_date = February 1996
english_pub_date =
media_type = Print (Hardback & Paperback)
pages = 441 pp (first edition, hardback)
isbn = ISBN 0-7472-0525-6 (first edition, hardback)
preceded_by = The Fall of Hyperion
followed_by = The Rise of Endymion

Endymion is the third science fiction novel by Dan Simmons in his Hyperion Cantos fictional universe. Centered around the new characters Aenea and Endymion, it has been well received like Hyperion and The Fall of Hyperion - within a year of its release, the paperback edition had gone through five reprints. [cite web|url=http://www.erinyes.org/simmons/rendrev.html|title=Reprints|accessdate=2008-06-18] The novel was nominated for the 1996 British Fantasy Award. [cite web|url=http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/s/dan-simmons/|title=Dan Simmons|accessdate=2008-06-18]

Plot summary


The story opens 274 years after the Fall of Hyperion, in which Hegemony CEO Meina Gladstone ordered the destruction of all farcaster singularities to stop the TechnoCore from eliminating humankind. However, the loss of the WorldWeb infrastructure also resulted in the collapse of civilization on most planets.

Brawne Lamia, Martin Silenus and the Consul were the only surviving Pilgrims that stayed on Hyperion. The Consul left shortly and joined the Ousters. His fate is uncertain. Brawne Lamia, pregnant from the first John Keats technological reincarnation, gave birth shortly after to a daughter called Aenea. Lamia died when Aenea was still a girl, and Silenus took care of the child. When Aenea was twelve years old, she entered the "Time Tomb" and disappeared. Silenus hid his home and began cryonic hibernation to wait for her return.

Father Paul Duré was the only pilgrim not in Hyperion. Before the fall, he had farcasted to Pacem, the dying Catholic Church's planet, and had been elected as the new Pope, under the name of Teilhard (a reference to Teilhard de Chardin). His papacy was determined to rejuvenate the Church. When he died unexpectedly, he was reincarnated as Lenar Hoyt, due to the remaining cruciform on their shared body.

With Lenar Hoyt as the new Pope, with the help of Cardinal Lourdusamy, the Church took a new direction. Two new Sacraments were introduced, the Acceptance of the Cruciform and the Resurrection. The Church had developed a new technology that improved the results of the Resurrection, so the believers who had accepted the cruciform were virtually immortal. Assisted by the immortality, the Church grew steadily, and under the name of Pax, filled the void left by the Hegemony after the Fall, as the government of all the galaxy's mankind. When Hoyt died, he was resurrected again and again, and Father Duré never again appeared to the public eye. Under the various Hoyt's papacies, Father Duré was considered as an Antipope that nearly killed the Church.

Aenea's rescue

274 years after the Fall, Raul Endymion is a hunting guide in Hyperion who kills a hunter in self defense (the hunter later resurrects). Endymion is framed for murder and sentenced to death. He refuses the cruciform and appears to be executed. To his surprise, he awakens in the house of an old man named Martin Silenus. The old man tells him that he has been rescued to perform a mission: rescue his "niece" Aenea who is about to return at the Time Tomb, find the old Earth (Silenus may be the last living human born there), destroy the Pax, and "find out what the fuck the TechnoCore is up to and stop it." Endymion assumes that Silenus is demented, but accepts the mission. He is helped by Silenus' android servant A. Bettik and by the old Consul's starship.

Meanwhile, the Pax also knows that Aenea is about to arrive. They consider her an abomination and want her captured. The mission is assigned to Father-Captain Federico de Soya, who prepares an army of elite troops on Hyperion's surface and in surrounding space to trap Aenea.

Endymion and Silenus's plan consists of arriving at the Time Tombs, flying on the Consul's Hawking mat. When the Tomb opens, Aenea appears as predicted. However, The Shrike also emerges and massacres most of the Pax military units - both on Hyperion and in local space. In the confusion, Endymion meets Aenea and takes her to the starship, where Bettik is waiting. The Pax, fighting with the Shrike, cannot stop the ship before it translates to hyperspace.

Travelling through Hyperspace

The ship's first destination from Hyperion is the Parvati star system. The trip starts the friendship between Aenea and Endymion. He realizes that his young friend is far more precocious than a twelve year old should be, and he feels a hint of the mystique that she will have in the future.

Meanwhile, Father de Soya, badly injured by the Shrike, is determined to not let Aenea escape again. He takes possession of an Archangel-class courier ship, the "Raphael", that allows him and three of his elite soldiers, (Sargent Gregorius, Corporal Kee and Lancer Rettig, from the Swiss Guard) to fly to Parvati faster than hyperspace. The price of this speed is a painful death and resurrection of the ship's passengers.

When Aenea and Endymion arrive to Parvati space, de Soya is waiting to stop them. Aenea threatens to blow the old Consul's ship and die. Since de Soya's orders are to catch her alive, he has to let her go.

The next destination is Renaissance Vector. De Soya's team, after dying and resurrecting again, are ready to stop her even if she tries to blow the ship. Aenea convinces him to allow her ship to land, but instead she flies the ship along the old River Tethys through one of the farcaster portals, all of which have been inactive since the Fall of Hyperion. De Soya guesses her plan at the last moment and attempts to disable Aenea's ship, but too late to prevent it from farcasting.

Traveling through the River Tethys

The ship has arrived to an unknown sylvatic planet through the farcaster. The passengers are all unharmed, but the ship is badly damaged. Its AI states that it can be auto-repaired, but it will take about five standard months. Since Aenea cannot wait, Raul constructs a raft to follow the River Tethys. Raul, Aenea and Bettik depart and leave the Ship on the unknown planet.

De Soya, unable to determine to which of the hundreds of planets crossed by River Tethys Aenea has fled, begins an odyssey of continuous deaths and resurrections through all known planet systems in order to find her.

The raft arrives at the next inactive farcaster, but again it works and translates them to another planet, Mare Infinitus. As they travel across the aquatic planet, looking for next farcaster, they encounter a sea platform occupied by Pax guards. Since they cannot avoid it, Raul boards the flying carpet and goes alone to the platform, taking some explosives in order to create a distraction. He succeeds, but only after fighting with Pax soldiers, losing the carpet, falling into the water, and eventually being rescued by Aenea and Bettik.

They find the next farcaster and translate to Hebron. Strangely, they find this Jewish planet absolutely uninhabited. Aenea and Bettik find a hospital with automated medical kits, which cure Endymion, who is still injured from the Mare Infinitus adventure.

Meanwhile, De Soya's search brings him to Mare Infinitus, where he finds evidence that Aenea and Endymion have been there, namely the flying carpet. De Soya concludes that Aenea's final destination might be Ouster territory. Hoping to intercept her, De Soya and his men translate there, but there is an accident: resurrection fails, and consequently their ship is automatically rerouted to Pacem.

De Soya is resurrected there, but one of his men, Rettig has died the "True Death". The Pax government, in spite of De Soya's consistent failures to capture Aenea, decide to keep de Soya on the mission, and assign a new officer to his guard, Rhadamanth Nemes, a member of a "new race of soldiers, prepared to fight the ousters".

At Sol Draconi Septem

Aenea, Raul and Bettik continue to travel through the farcasters. Their next destination is Sol Draconi Septem, a barely terraformed, frozen, high gravity planet. There, they meet and befriend the Chitchatuk, primitive humans who are adapted to Sol Draconi Septem's terrible conditions. The Chitchatuk take Aenea and her companions to meet Father Glaucus a blind priest estranged from Pax. At Glaucus' home, Aenea, Bettik and Raul rest and enjoy the priest's friendship.

They depart again and farcast to Qom Riyadh, an Islamic planet, which they find also strangely uninhabited, and then to God's Grove.

Meanwhile, de Soya has received information that it has been "revealed" to the Pope that Aenea is in Sol Draconi Septem. De Soya and his guards fly there in his Archangel Torchship, but something is wrong: Nemes is not dead. In fact, she wakes up when the rest of crew has yet to resurrect, and takes a dropship to the planet. She has inhuman strength and skills and is ruthless. She kills the Chitchatuk and Father Glaucus. She also links to the farcaster and learns that Aenea has gone to Qom Riyadh and will soon head for God's Grove. She plants this new destination in the ship's communicator, but de Soya is suspicious. When they farcast to God's Grove, de Soya secretly gives the ship instructions to resurrect the crew in only 6 hours instead of the safer 3 days.

Encounter at God's Grove

Nemes takes the Raphael's dropship and prepares an ambush for Aenea, including monofilament, land mines and a trap to beat the Shrike, if it shows.

When the raft transporting the heroes arrives, they fall into her trap. A. Bettik has one arm cut off by the monofilaments. When Nemes attacks, the Shrike appears and blocks her. They fight each other to a standstill, but Nemes uses her secret weapon. The Shrike is transported 5 minutes into the future, giving Nemes plenty of time to kill Aenea. However, Father de Soya, barely resurrected and piloting the "Raphael", talks to Raul by tightbeam and shoots Nemes from outer space. Nemes disappears in a lake of molten rock.

Blessing her, de Soya guides Aenea to the dropship and lets her go. The heroes pass through a farcaster to reach their end destination: the supposedly destroyed Old Earth, which is now orbiting a Sun-like star in the Magellanic Cloud.

Aenea guides the ship to Fallingwater, Pennsylvania, where she will study with an architect (the Frank Lloyd Wright cybrid) until she is ready to fulfill her mission.


External links

* [http://mostlyfiction.com/scifi/simmons.htm#endymion Book Review at Mostlyfiction.com]

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