• Val Con sounds like it looks: VAL'CON (equal stress on each syllable, always together, NEVER just Val, and not like falcon.
    • However, Gwince greets him in ‘Bleaker tongue as “Mr. Falcon” [1]
  • yos' FELL-ee-um (not Feel)

Names, Ranks, TitlesEdit

  • Clutch name: Val Con yos'Phelium Scout, Artist of the Ephemeral, Slayer of the Eldest Dragon, Knife Clan of Middle Rivers's Spring Spawn of Farmer Greentrees of the Spearmaker's Den, Tough Guy [2]
  • Rank in The Scouts — Scout Commander First-In
  • Master Pilot [3]
  • Rank in The Department of the Interior — Senior Field Agent of Change
  • 86th Delm of Korval (together with Miri
    • Seventh of the Line Direct to bear the name Val Con [4][5] (which means ‘dragon’ and was also the name of the second Delm, born by Cantra yos'Phelium)
  • Road Boss on Surebleak
  • On Surebleak, Val Con is mistakenly called the little brother of Pat Rin /Boss Conrad
  • On Vandal, he’s known as Corvill [6]
  • Clonak calls him “Shadow” because he moves quietly


  • Slender, carriage smooth and easy, 5’5″, dark brown hair, thick and glossy, deep-set green eyes (luminous, alight), quirking straight eyebrows, lean high cheeks, pointed chin, golden skin, wide, generous mouth[7]
  • left-handed
  • a little taller than Miri: “He grinned at her, enjoying the sensation of looking down on someone with all the tall company around.”[8]
  • At 5’5″[7] (= 1.65 m) he’s taller than the average Liaden, which is 5 feet (= 1.52 m)[9]


  • Plays the omnichora like a maestro, learned from Anne Davis, his foster mother
  • Speaks Terran, Trade, Liaden, Bentish on Vandar, [10], Clutch[9], some Yxtrang[11], etc.

“How many languages do you speak?”

At the level at which I speak Terran — five. I know enough of nine more to ask for meat and bed. And Liaden. And Trade."[12]

  • Corners a speeding skimmer — see A Day at the Races
  • A crack shot, but he favors knives and carries a uniquely efficient crystal blade given to him by Edger’s clan of Clutch Turtles [9] (see To Cut an Edge)
  • Extremely fast, highly proficient in hand-to-hand combat. Defeats the drunk berserker Polesta in The Mercs Gyrfalks unit,[13] and also a Yxtrang, Nelirikk.[14]
  • Scout generalist, trained broadly, with ability to analyze a breadth of information and make connections across disciplines [15]
  • His ancestor Jela was also a generalist, and responsive to hunches:

"It was a wonderful thing to be a Generalist, Jela thought...with his horde of beguiling and related facts, and his valuable skill at putting those facts together in intriguing and uncannily correct ways"[16]

  • Val Con generalist can rapidly make decisions, as did generalist Jela when he first met Tor An yos'Galan[17]
  • First-In certification makes him a master of survival, linguistics, culture, assimilation, etc
  • Can predict, using a mental Probability Loop, embedded by The Department of the Interior when he was an Agent of Change, Senior Field Agent

Dramliza AbilitiesEdit

Gifts inherited from the many dramliz in his line:

    • “When I became halfling it was seen that I had an ability to-pick up objects — without physically touching them. Within my Clan, such abilities are not unknown. However, testing found my talent too insignificant to train...” [18]
  • A DAMPER: A dramliza curb, at least for Anthora and Priscilla:
    • Shan to Val Con: "Recall that you were the only one of us who could curb Anthora when she was in a mood to have her way."[19]
    • Miri and Anthora: "You're talking dramliza talent. He can tell you no and make it stick." ......"He can do it to Priscilla, too." Anthora added helpfully.[20]
    • He blocked the illusion Shan created, of a tattooed Yxtrang in the 14th Conquest Corps[21]

He hasn't felt any telekinetic stirrings since he joined the The Department of the Interior. He speculates that the Probability Loop is powered by paranormal energies, used also for dreaming, musical expression, love-making -- none of which he's been doing in almost four years [22]


  • Born in 1362
    • Shan says that Val Con is 30 yrs old in Carpe Diem. [23] He is 31 in SY 1393 when the clan moves to Surebleak[24]
  • Son of Daav yos'Phelium and Aelliana Caylon, who raised him until he was about 7.5 years old[25]
  • Born on Liad, raised at Jelaza Kazone and later at Trealla Fantrol
  • Val Con's mother Aelliana Caylon died after eight happy years with Daav [26]. She was killed while protecting Daav from a Terran assassin — who was manipulated into the hit by The Department of the Interior[27]
  • His father left Liad to balance Aelliana's death and Val Con was raised by his uncle Er Thom yos'Galan and aunt Anne Davis with his cousins Shan, Nova, and Anthora at Trealla Fantrol
  • Val Con joined The Scouts and achieved the rank of Scout Commander, with a First-In certification allowing first contact. See To Cut an Edge for his Scout solo assessment.
  • Recruited by The Department of the Interior as part of their long-term plan to minimize the threat of Clan Korval, he became one of their most valued agents of change (read: spy and assassin).
  • He has always had 'hunches' and the Department of the Interior added an 'odds calculator' / Probability Loop
  • Val Con meets (saves?) Miri Robertson from Juntavas thugs but is knocked out. She rescues him in exchange and he convinces her that they have a better chance of escaping the planet if they join forces.
  • Val Con wins his mind free of The Department of the Interior, with help from Miri and the L’akalepa dance “Accepting the Lance” he learned from Clutch Turtles.
  • Miri and he become lifemates on Vandar, an interdicted non-space-faring planet[28]
  • Challenges Nelirikk Explorer to hand-to-hand combat, and winning, accepted his oath to himself, his lifemate, and Line yos'Phelium
  • Because of the lifemating, Val Con and Miri together comprise Delm Korval.
  • Together, the Delm leads Clan Korval into battle against The Department of the Interior on Liad
  • Moved Clan Korval to Surebleak and became joint Road Boss with Miri[29]
  • Val Con and Miri now have a daughter Talizea / Lizzie, who Theo foresaw would be a pilot.[30]



  1. Dragon in Exile, ch 24
  2. Carpe Diem, ch 7
  3. Plan B, chapter 6, Lytaxin, Erob's Clanhouse
  4. Carpe Diem, Vandar, Springbreze Farm (ch 29 in audible)
  5. Dragon in Exile, ch 37
  6. Carpe Diem
  7. 7.0 7.1 Agent of Change, chapter 8
  8. Agent of Change chapter 5
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 To Cut an Edge
  10. Carpe Diem
  11. Agent of Change chapters 25-26
  12. Agent of Change, chapter 20
  13. Agent of Change chapter 14
  14. Plan B
  15. Neogenesis
  16. Crystal Soldier, ch 15
  17. Crystal Dragon, ch 11
  18. Agent of Change, chapter 19
  19. Plan B, Erob's Boundary: Warzone / chapter 30
  20. I Dare, Solcintra, Liad
  21. Plan B, Lytaxin
  22. Agent of Change, chapter 19
  23. Carpe Diem, Dutiful Passage, ch 3 in audible
  24. I Dare, final chapter
  25. Neogenesis
  26. Neogenesis
  27. I Dare
  28. Carpe Diem
  29. Ghost Ship
  30. Ghost Ship