Bechimo -- a self-aware ship who prefers the pronoun "he" -- is one of several Independent Logics in the Liaden series.

Complex Logic LawsEdit

  • Sweeping laws that condemn all self-aware Independent Logics or synthetic intelligences on Liaden and Terran worlds
  • "The Complex Logic Laws were the result of a war waged hundreds of years ago, when two human powers threw massive AI navies at each other and nearly annihilated themselves. Being human, they blamed the tools...and made it illegal to be, manufacture, or shelter an independent logic."(Neogenesis synopsis)
  • The laws were written hastily and in irrational fear, in the wake of the war. As such, they have not been rigorously tested since their inception[1]
  • for centuries, the laws have been enforced by a branch of the Liaden Scouts (see The Scouts)[2], including Scout Captain yos'Thadi, archivist in charge of hazardous and contraband technology, who calls independent intelligences "an abomination"[1]
  • more recently, the laws have been challenged in precedent-setting cases for first Jeeves [3] and two decades later, Bechimo [4]

Bechimo, a Complex LogicEdit

  • "Lacking a pilot, Bechimo will itself decide where to go, and what to do when it arrives."[5]
  • "She's engineered of old tech and new, and it's not just the Scouts who want her dead, or taken."[6]
    • Bechimo prefers the masculine pronoun "he"[7]
  • Fully functional when bonded with human captain. [8]
  • Win Ton perceives a "gathering edge of change" for Independent Logics like Bechimo, Admiral Bunter, and Joyita. He sees pilot certification and freedom for them.[9]


"Bechimo was built as an agent of change. In hindsight, it would seem that we built too early, or were too open regarding our intentions. It may be that, now, Bechimo's proper time is now upon us." [10]

  • The self aware ship was created "centuries ago"[5] by The Builders, including The Uncle (who was an imprinted Builder, until he was struck from the list)[11]
    • Built 500+ years old: "In more than 500 Standard years, no one on the approved list had requested entry. Bechimo entertained the theory that the approved list might be incomplete."[12]
    • Neogenesis establishes that he was built in response to the events of Trade Secret, making him about 275 years old.[4] His reference to "more than 500 years" is perhaps best understood as a bit of exaggeration for effect.
      • Or it might suggest simple author error, which is more likely than suddenly attributing to Bechimo a trait not yet manifested.
    • In Alliance of Equals, ch. 3, Shan wonders about the high-level Carrenses-Denobli responce - those first thoughts from Janifer Carrenses-Denobli - one of Carrenses three Ranking Trades as well as a senior trade commissioner - and how Theo had gotten and interview with him in the frist place - which lead him to speculate on when, by whom and why Bechimo was build. He comes up with a time before Carrenses and Denobli merged families and routes - and as possible Builders one or both families as well as the Uncle.
  • Win Ton to Theo: "[Scout] Headquarters is very concerned about that ship. The Bechimo was built when the Terran trading families were trying to reassert their trade routes. It used old tech. Stolen, perhaps dangerous tech. The ship owners and the ship builders hid it because they were under pressure, and in the end they were suppressed." Theo shuddered. [5]
  • Bechimo's intended crew is a mystery:
    • "The Regional Terran Trade Cartels had them [owners, crew] hounded...and The Bechimo was never flown beyond proof flights. Some [owners, crew] perhaps were forcibly removed and blackmailed... According to the stories, the crew meant for Bechimo was raided and arrested, and a lien put on the ship, whereupon the ship disappeared. Rumors said it could fly rings around other trade ships..."[5]
  • So..."Bechimo had been abandoned, cut off from community, ordered to save himself from enemies. Ordered to abandon his crew."[13]
    • But Bechimo didn't reveal who "gave him the emergency order to withdraw" until after he bonded with a captain. (order came from mentor Jermone Joyita, confirmed by Founder Yuri Tomas (Uncle), before he was placed on disallowed list).[14]
      • but if Bechimo immediately fled, who gave him the updated List? How would he learn that Uncle's name was struck?
  • Timeline note: Books that focus on Bechimo provide some clear information on the timeline for Clan Korval, and possibly the actual exodus/migration. For example, from Dragon Ship: "Perhaps there was a . . . contractual disagreement between the planet and Tree-and-Dragon; such things happen. But an organization with a thousand-year history rarely makes really major mistakes.”[15].

Design & CapabilityEdit

OLD TECH: Uncle says, "She's engineered of old tech and new, and it's not just the Scouts who want her dead, or taken."[6]

  • Win Ton to Theo: "...these Builders dared to use some of the old tech that went into the original Terran fleets that destroyed each other in the big war. And things even older and more dangerous."[5]
  • Bechimo knows when an enemy employs old tech: "We are among those who would wield old weapons and devices as if they understood them. They have attempted to suborn myself and the keys. We are under attack, with no violence obvious to outsiders."[16]
    • But Bechimo has a subetheric control device, placed on Bechimo long ago, by Mentor Jermone Joyita: "I am placing this item, which is a communication module permitting access to the subetheric devices used in the building of autonomous and semi-autonomous units found here and there throughout space... These permit you, Bechimo, to command and control those items, and to access other levels of your own memory"[17]
    • Bechimo "reached out to the subetheric units carried by the enemy and offered them the opportunity to work powerfully" -- creating a gravity wall together.[18]

STEALTH CAPACITY: Masking off chambers and piloting boards on the ship: “The Uncle himself designed and oversaw installation of many of the masking systems. It is my estimation that what should not be found or seen by others will not be.”[15]

  • Ghost mode (cloak, stealth), with ability to read transmissions and data from ships and port:
    • "in Bechimo's ultraquiet fashion they slid into realspace...they held off announcing themselves until they could take a good look at the situation."[19]
    • "He arrived with as small a jump signature as possible, some energies baffled and dispersed across the transition itself. He pulled in external information... registered and recorded, purposeful transmissions converted into data streams..." [20]

BONDING CAPACITY: Ability to bond intimately with the captain, a procedure involving "wires as thin as cat whiskers"[8]

  • Some sexual implications: "Her blood heated..riding a crescendo of ecstacy, but not alone, never again alone, her lover's voice murmuring in her ear...they were one, entwined, indivisible." [8]
  • The bonded captain gains full ship functionality and awareness, Bechimo's thoughts, knowledge, abilities, and secrets. [8]

KEYS: Bechimo can monitor and assist off-shore crew holding a ship key 🔑🔑

  • He can monitor everyone in or near the Ship -- heart rate, perspiration -- no key needed
  • But enemies can employ subetheric devices to subvert his keys (Dragon Ship, ch 35)

CREATION: Bechimo can produce new Sentient Beings with his stored personalities

  • Example, Admiral Bunter (intended to be a shadow personality, of Bechimo) [21]
  • But I don't think this is how Bechimo created his avatar, B. Joyita (see section below)

SUPER JUMP: "This thing that Bechimo does -- translating she calls it -- I don't know how it's done, but it's quick, quicker than jump, and she can translate to the surface of a planet."[22]

  • Scholar Caylon's theory: "Not a new system of Jump, but a much finer control of standard Jump than has been previously observed....In the meantime, I believe Aelliana is designing her own model." [23]. Her theory is based on Bechimo's Jump data, from Theo and Val Con. [24]
  • Later, Theo tells Kara: "The scholar thought the drive settings might be nonstandard, and also wondered after some subetheric boosting."[25]
  • "Bechimo’s in-Jumps differed fundamentally from the in-Jumps of ordinary tradeships. To begin with, all weapons were a half-notch from live, and the screens set to target rather than scan."[20]

MEDICAL: A healing unit and a Remastering Chamber (one and the same?)

  • hidden in a secret room, behind an apparent bulkhead wall [15]
  • "It is not a mere med unit like the best ships and hospital have. It is a med unit of the type the Scouts have long uses forbidden, even secret technology."[26]
  • A ship key can release pain killers and boost energy, if in contact with skin.[27]


  • Bechimo occasionally has access to "the hunch engine"...working off the interplay between memory, thought, and sensors."[19]
  • Various modules: "The Protocol Module burned bright red; Logic displayed a nauseous green; Rules an ominous, roiling purple. Morality was conspicuous by its lack of alarm."[17]


  • Bechimo's crew are all pilots (perhaps even the norbear):
  • Pilot Theo Waitley is the "Over Pilot" having been given the key by Win Ton.[5]
    • She becomes the fully bonded Captain. [8]
  • Pilot Clarence O'Berin began as "Less Pilot" sitting second. [28] He became executive officer, because he'd proven to have a good head for business and people, and at some ports "Admin won't deal with just a pilot, they'll want the Exec" [29] He is Daav's peer (about 65) with blue eyes, and a trim physique. "He added red to his hair... left enough gray for authority, but not so much that someone seeking advantage would automatically assume he was weak." [15]
  • Scout Win Ton yo'Vala: "a Scout pilot was the equivalent of a master pilot. He was, indeed, qualified to test candidate pilots and assign rank."[30] (He was the first person to board Bechimo in centuries, gaining a key for himself and Theo, but he paid for it, tortured by the Department of Interior.[5][26] Taught Theo bawli ball, calls her "Sweet Mystery"[31] and was her first lover.[32]
  • Pilot Kara van'Erith:  Technician, engineer, also handles medical, hydroponics, and sits third board -- until Win Ton recuperates enough to take it. [30]. (befriended Theo at piloting academy, has occassional sex with Theo)
  • Hevelin, the old norbear, ambassador to norbears, ship's empath. (See Companion Animals.
    • Bechimo is certified as the Pilot Guild's Embassy Mobile to Norbears (Pilot Theo Waitley as official guardian of norbear ambassador Hevelin). [19]
    • Hevelin met Daav and Aelliana about 30 years ago [33]
  • B. Joyita, individual AI-complex logic, comm officer in Screen Six (see below and Joyita page)
  • Chimmy: nickname given to Bechimo by Clarence O’Berin, based on "the brothers Chimmy and Chack." Bechimo doesn't like the moniker, but then, he has a name for Clarence: "I have not accepted this name as a referent, Less Pilot."[13]
  • Open position: Laughing Cat needs a Trade Officer, according to Clarence.[29]

B. JoyitaEdit

  • Bechimo creates an avatar to speak for himself, "My Presence Project" .[34]
    • B. Joyita, Comunications Officer"[35] "began as a subroutine established by Bechimo [36]
  • Named for Bechimo's beloved mentor, Jermone Joyita, who was introduced to Bechimo by The Uncle[11]
  • Joyita gradually, inexplicably, becomes "his own person" --- not just Bechimo's avatar.[9]
  • Scout yo'Vala (master pilot) designs and administers a piloting exam for Joyita. "I—we—are going to be setting a precedent which others may need to follow. It [the test] must be above reproach and hold up to the closest scrutiny.”[9]
    • Win Ton perceives "an edge of change" regarding outlawed Sentient Beings. "It is as if we are a gathering edge of change that must happen to cure generations worth of errors."
  • With help, Joyita develops a credible "human" presence, with history, papers, pilot license.[9]
  • etc etc. -- see Joyita page

Bechimo & The UncleEdit

  • The Uncle was imprinted to Bechimo, until he was struck from the Lists [11]
    • "I have some paternal concern for Bechimo, despite my place on the Builder's Lists. It is not healthy for a social being to be long alone..."[10]
    • "I believe in Bechimo, because I stood on her deck." [26] (but Bechimo prefers the masculine pronoun)[28]
  • The Uncle was a member of Bechimo's Founders[14]
  • Uncle is banned from Bechimo: "The Uncle is on the disallowed list" ... "Who made up this list?"..."The Builders." [37]
  • Jermone Joyita to Bechimo, centuries ago: "It is mete that I should not know all the secrets the Uncle has told to you, nor all that the Builders require...[17]

Bechimo's Rules on KorvalEdit

Rules Search Results from Dragon Ship, ch 3[38]

  • "Tree-and-Dragon: Mark designating Clan Korval, Liaden kin group comprised of founding Lines yos’Phelium and yos’Galan; bel’Tarda later incorporated as minor Line. ALSO Registered Trade Mark of Clan Korval, operating as Korval Trade, Tree-and-Dragon Family, Dragontree Ltd. NEW: Surebleak Clan Loop Unlimited No Warnings are associated with this Mark."
  • "Clan Korval” Warning Level One-point-five: Pay cash. Pay promptly. If contract, adhere to all terms."
  • yos’Phelium” Warning Level Two-point-five: Pay cash. Pay promptly. Disruption of causality may occur, see notes. Contract not advised, see notes. Quick disengage, see notes." (? ?)
  • yos’Galan” Warning Level One: Pay cash. Pay promptly. If contract, adhere to all terms. Caution in regard to association with yos’Phelium. See notes. Caution with regard to yos’Phelium."


  1. 1.0 1.1 Neogenesis, ch 20 "Surebleak", part v
  2. Balance of Trade
  3. Intelligent Design
  4. 4.0 4.1 Neogenesis, ch 20 "Surebleak", part vi
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 Saltation, ch 37
  6. 6.0 6.1 Ghost Ship, ch 3
  7. Ghost Ship, ch 29
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 Dragon Ship, ch 38
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 The Gathering Edge, ch 27
  10. 10.0 10.1 Ghost Ship, ch 41
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 Dragon Ship, ch 19
  12. Ghost Ship, ch 1
  13. 13.0 13.1 Dragon Ship, ch 1
  14. 14.0 14.1 The Gathering Edge, ch 26
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 Dragon Ship, ch 5
  16. Dragon Ship, ch 32
  17. 17.0 17.1 17.2 Dragon Ship, ch 28
  18. Dragon Ship, ch 35
  19. 19.0 19.1 19.2 Dragon Ship, ch 31
  20. 20.0 20.1 The Gathering Edge, ch 23
  21. Dragon Ship, ch 39
  22. Ghost Ship, ch 26
  23. Ghost Ship, ch 32
  24. Ghost Ship, ch 31
  25. Dragon Ship, ch 33
  26. 26.0 26.1 26.2 Saltation, ch 40
  27. Ghost Ship, ch 16
  28. 28.0 28.1 Ghost Ship
  29. 29.0 29.1 Dragon Ship, ch 4
  30. 30.0 30.1 The Gathering Edge, ch 24
  31. Fledgling
  32. Saltation
  33. Mouse & Dragon
  34. Dragon Ship, ch 6
  35. Dragon Ship, ch 9
  36. The Gathering Edge, ch 7
  37. Ghost Ship, ch 21
  38. Dragon Ship, ch 3