Specialist, The

The Specialist
Image from Steve Bowers

A quasi- mythical individual (or possibly a group of individuals), wandering the the Wormhole Nexus and nearby worlds (largely incognito) getting involved in local issues of great potential relevance.

Most situations where the Specialist appears are on the verge of crisis, usually brought about by intelligent actions. Several emerging blights in the Sagittarius arm appear to have been defused by him, as well as the intended crusade by a militant group of Negentropics against worlds in the Disarchy. He has also been sighted in the Perseus arm, apparently helping several colonies escape the Amalgamation. It seems the Specialist appears out of nowhere, gets involved with key individuals and situations and usually manages to defuse the crisis by discreet interference. Then he disappears without a trace.

The existence of the Specialist is debated; it has been suggested that he is just a projection of the ancient archetype of the wandering saviour or even a deliberate memetic construct. Another common idea is that he is an avatar or creation of unknown inner sphere AI gods, seeking to help baseline populations in a discreet manner. Some neohermetics have suggested he is, or is patterned on, Count Saint Germain, Fulcanelli, or the Wandering Jew. Some have suggestion connections with the Santor Magus. Stories circulate about him being a time traveller, a descended archai or an alien. Like any other issue where transcendent manipulation is involved, the Specialist seem to be nearly impossible to track down or gain solid evidence of.

The Specialist always appears as a nearbaseline or minimally modified biont, fitting in culturally with whatever the local culture is but always giving a plausible impression of being from somewhere else. His bearing is amiable and pacifist if somewhat eccentric, and he usually gives the impression he belongs to a social group of intellectual relevance or wisdom. He has extensive scholarly and practical skills, which nearly always seem to suit the situation at hand while in themselves not being suspiciously powerful. Quite commonly he has a small number of followers who appear to be normal beings who are merely following along on his travels.

The Specialist seems to have an independent means of transportation, and is notably good at vanishing shortly after intervening in events; it has been suggested due to a few sightings that he possess a very small clarketech craft. At several times the Specialist has been apparently killed, only to re-appear. This deepens his mystique and suggest that he is sponsored by (or is) a high toposophic archailect.
 
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Development Notes
Text by Anders Sandberg

Initially published on 20 September 2001.