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Planet of the Handlers

A lighter from the Ithaca, just after landing on the Planet of the Handlers.


The Planet of the Handlers was a name given by the Ithaca crew to an arboreal world in Human-Scattering space, which was the home-world of both the futars and their maters, whom they called Handlers. It is not known what the Handlers called the world.

The Ithaca and the Planet[]

To Join the Hunt[]

When the no-ship, the Ithaca, found itself above an arboreal and lush world after a prescience-guided jump by the ghola of Miles Teg, the futars aboard the vessel began acting nervously, and Hrrm, their leader declared they had come to 'home', the home planet of the Handlers and Futars.

The leader of the Handlers on that particular district of the planet was named Orak Tho, and he invited the landing party of the Ithaca to observe a hunt of the Honored Matres. He also told Sheeana Brugh, the leader of the no-ship's landing party, that the Ithaca futars were invited to participate in the hunt. The Ithaca crew had gone down to the jungle world in one group, but were soon separated into two separate parties guided by the futar's Handlers. This caused Sheeana and Miles Teg to be in one group; and the Jewish Rabbi, and the ghola of Thufir Hawat, to be in the second group. The entire group, now in two separate observation decks of the Hunt; separated by a kilometer, was especially on guard.

Enhanced Face Dancers[]

After the futars killed some Honored Matres, the Matres ended up killing one of the Handlers, who in actuality turned out to be Enhanced Face Dancers, under the control of the Thinking Machine leaders Omnius and Erasmus. Sheeana and Miles were shocked that the Handlers were indeed Face Dancers, and that the landing party were to be the next victims. Sheeana immediately yelled out to Hawat and the Rabbi, in the other observation pod, to get back to the Ithaca by any means necessary. Miles re-awakened his faster-than-sight fighting abilities, and killed many of the Face Dancers as they stood in the way of his and Sheeana's escape back to the landing craft.

As their landing craft safely boarded the Ithaca, Sheeana and Teg disembarked. Garimi, who had remained behind on the vessel, raced to the bridge of the no-ship, and had to bring Idaho out of trance that he had hypnotized himself into, as he thought of the sexual bonding he had gone through years earlier with Murbella. Sheeana then yelled at Idaho to keep a sharp look out for the returning landing craft of Hawat. As Hawat's craft reached the Ithaca, it was rammed stridently by those the Face Dancers/Handlers, but managed to navigate into the landing bay, and though it caught on fire, both Hawat and the Rabbi were able to disembark. Two other Handler craft tried to ram the Ithaca to damage it, but Idaho was able to fold space to safety, just as Omnius and Erasmus again tried to capture the vessel in their tachyon net. As the Ithaca sped away to safety, the net was severely damaged.

It is not known if all Handlers were Enhanced Face Dancers, or if some Enhanced Face Dancers had been strategically placed by the Machines on the Handler home world.