Liaden Wiki

Arin Gobelyn

Life in Brief[]

Arin Tomas /Gobelyn was prolly a very old, continuously regenerated clone created by The Uncle. (See Balance of Trade and Trade Secret)

  • member of the Tomas family
  • husband to Iza Gibelyn and co-pilot on Gobelyn’s Market
  • fractin-scientist
  • one of the Combine commissioners, but quit when things went in a direction he couldn't support [1]
  • Raised his twin / son Jethri from infancy. Left him his fractin collection, a trade notebook with a hidden alphabet for deciphering Old Tech inscriptions, etc
  • Died heroically when burning building exploded, circa 1108, according to eyewitness Scout ter’Astin: "Your father—he was as a giant. He went back into that building twice, and brought out injured persons”[2] (see section below)
  • Courier ship "Arin's Toss" that Theo pilots for The Uncle is named after Arin.
  • Wrote The Envidaria (see below)

Clone, undercover[]

  • a continuously regenerated clone, he is prolly of the same stock that came with The Uncle from Old Solcintra, following Korval’s Ship of the Migration, Quick Passage
  • "Father" of Jethri Gobelyn. Jethri thought of him as father, cuz he raised him from infancy, but Uncle refers to Jethri as “Arin’s youngest brother” [3]
  • Iza Gobelyn’s husband. She eventually hated him for deceiving her, using her:

Arin come back from a long run of commissioner business with a barely born kid he claimed as his. Not the kind of thing someone who married partly for love wants to hear, I’m guessing—well, it didn’t take a lot of research then to see that Arin been married twice before, and the first time he’d been married they called him thirty Standards old and she’d thought she’d met him when he was thirty-three’[4]

  • Trade Secret indicates that Jethri is a specialized clone, with talents like Arin’s, [1]
  • Got the name Gobelyn from his wife Captain Iza Gobelyn of the tradeship Gobelyn’s Market[1]
  • His "cousin" is Grig Tomas, another clone who watched over Jethri on Gobelyn's Market after Arin died and Iza disowned him[1]
  • Grig and Arin piloting red-eye flights, centuries ago:

“manning the boards in shifts, six hours on, six hours off; ‘mite and crackers at the station. He’d done many a run just that way, back when him and Arin was active on Uncle’s business. ‘Course, he’d been a couple hundred Standards younger then.[5]

  • Grig's POV: "Despite that his whole life had been one form of lie or another, he’d never been near as casual with the truth as Arin. Well, and he was light on most all the family talents, wasn’t he?"[6]

in Old Universe[]

The following information is assuming that the Arin who is Jethri's "father" is the same Arin we met back in Crystal Dragon — which Balance of Trade and Trade Secret imply

  • Dulsey introduces him to Jela as: "our librarian and linguistic specialist"[7]
  • Described as a tall glowering fellow with a strong jaw,[7] tall lean and tough, with grey eyes set deep under strong black brows [8]
  • He worked for The Uncle as the team leader in the search for old tech artifacts on Vanehald [9]

Arin’s Envidaria[]

Arin’s “Envidaria of the Seventeen Worlds" is/was a hush-hush manifesto, thesis or action plan — the titular “Trade Secret” itself, written by Jethri’s “father” Arin

  • The DeNobli family and the Carresens read it and built smaller ships and Tradedesk. They met with Jethri Gobelyn. [10] (Trade Secret)

Envidaria Thesis: (a bit obscure)

  • The Seventeen Worlds are a cluster of planets along the galatic arm where unusual cosmic phenomena is expected to last for five centuries — beyond current time with Val Con and Miri.[11]

“a peculiar knot of worlds along the galactic arm that were mostly Terran, and constrained by the physics of dust clouds, particle jets, and gaseous remnants of a string of supernovas. The Jumps into and out of the region were extra long, and for the next few centuries, the easiest Jump locations would be fraught with hot magnetic bubbles, essentially doubling and tripling travel time into and out of the arm.”[12]

  • while the phenomena continues in that Space, the big cargo ships (which are supported by Combine) won’t be able to fit through the... what? space rubble? jump point?
  • How to reach those 17 worlds:
    • Use smaller ships on longer loops — the route will take a long time. Take the whole family along. Make it a lifestyle. Make the ships self-sufficient. (Smart even??)
    • Sounds like Bechimo’s design. He’s far smaller than Dutiful Passage.

Freza tells Jethri about the intent of Arin’s Envidaria:

  • let the huge Combine trade ships duke it out with Liaden big ships, while smaller ships allow other traders to go about their business[13]
    • Reminiscent of Janifer Carresans-Denobli’s “everyone is happy” talk with Theo at Tradedesk. (See Dragon Ship, ch 18)
  • The Envidaria also describes how the Jump Points cannot always be trusted, due to gravitational pull.[14] (So Aelliana Caylon revised them to account for ongoing shift...centuries later.)

A viewpoint from within the Seventeen Worlds after the system has been running for a while:

To stop one world being the top spot like Liad tried to do, the Envidaria’d kept the sides even . . . and that meant worlds shouldn’t own all the ships, all the stations, all the commerce. Spadoni was ’sposed to be independent, her people free to work at what they could, while the trade org belonged to the planet system and most of the ships came from Outside. The Envidaria was supposed to make that work.[15]

Arin’s Heroic Death[]

Scout Captain ter’Astin to Jethri:

"Your father—he was as a giant. He went back into that building twice, and brought out injured persons. Was it three or five that he carried or guided out? The years blur the memory, I fear. The third time, however. . .” He moved his shoulders.

“The third time, he handed his rescue off to the medics, and paused, perhaps to recruit his strength. Behind him, the building collapsed as the inner roof beams gave way sequentially — throwing out debris and smoke with enormous energy.”

“When the dust cleared, I was down, your father was down — everyone in a two-square radius was down. After I had recovered my wits, I crawled over to your father. The wreckage was afire, of course, and I believe I had some foolish notion of trying to drag him further from the flames. As it happens, there was no need. A blade of wood as long as I am had pierced him. We had nothing to repair such a wound, and in any case it was too late. I doubt he knew that he had been killed.”

“You are fortunate in your kin, Jethri Gobelyn.”

Jethri swallowed around the hard spot in his throat. He’d only known that his father had died when the warehouse had collapsed. The rest of this. . . “Thank you,” he said, huskily. “I hadn’t known the — the story of my father’s death.”

“Ah. Then I am pleased to be of service.”[16]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Balance of Trade
  2. Balance of Trade, DAY 66 Standard Year 1118, Kailipso Station At Leave
  3. Balance of Trade, Day 165, SY 1118
  4. Trade Secret chapter 9
  5. Balance of Trade, Day 180, SY 1118, Irikwae
  6. Balance of Trade, Day 165, SY 1118
  7. 7.0 7.1 Crystal Dragon ch 19
  8. Crystal Dragon ch 18
  9. Crystal Dragon ch 21
  10. Trade Secret, chapter 16
  11. Trade Secret, ch 13 and 29
  12. Trade Secret, chapter 13
  13. Trade Secret, ch 26
  14. Trade Secret, ch 29
  15. "Revolutionists"
  16. Balance of Trade, DAY 66 Standard Year 1118, Kailipso Station At Leave