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* TakeAThirdOption: a thirteen has two options post-Jacobsen Accords: stay imprisoned on Earth for the rest and know when and where you're going to die, or go to Mars and become a part of the workforce (as well as something of a minor celebrity). Or you can run, in which case you'll have a UN-backed thirteen-hunter (who is probably a thirteen) come after you.

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* TakeAThirdOption: a thirteen A Thirteen has two options post-Jacobsen Accords: stay imprisoned on Earth for the rest of their life and know when and where you're going to die, or go to Mars and become a part of the workforce (as well as (and something of a minor celebrity). Or you can run, in which case you'll have a UN-backed thirteen-hunter (who is probably a thirteen) come after you.


* LighterAndSofter: Than the ''[[Literature/TakeshiKovacs Takeshi Kovacs]]'' novels. Itís still a treasure trove of human brutality, but the protagonists have better goals and (somewhat) cleaner methods, and the world as a whole is a much nicer place to live in.

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* LighterAndSofter: Than the ''[[Literature/TakeshiKovacs Takeshi Kovacs]]'' and ''[[Literature/ALandFitForHeroes A Land Fit For Heroes]]'' novels. Itís still a treasure trove of human brutality, but the protagonists have better goals and (somewhat) cleaner methods, and the world as a whole is a much nicer place to live in.



** Doubles as as FridgeBrilliance for why Marsalis carries less psychological baggage than [[Literature/TakeshiKovacs Kovacs]] or [[Literature/ALandFitForHeroes Ringil]].

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** Doubles as as FridgeBrilliance an explanation for why Marsalis carries less psychological baggage than [[Literature/TakeshiKovacs Kovacs]] or [[Literature/ALandFitForHeroes Ringil]].


* CategoryTraitor: Most of the other thirteens view Marsalis as a traitor for helping the UN hunt down and imprison his own kind.

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* CategoryTraitor: Most of the other thirteens Thirteens view Marsalis as a traitor for helping the UN hunt down and imprison his own kind.



* TestosteronePoisoning: Comes with the territory with all Thirteens. [[spoiler:Carmen Ren is an attempt to avert the harmful aspects of this trope, by creating a female Variant 13.]]

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* TestosteronePoisoning: Comes with the territory with all Thirteens.for Thirteens, although Marsalis can reign himself in better than most of the others in the story. [[spoiler:Carmen Ren is an attempt to avert the harmful aspects of this trope, by creating a female Variant 13.]]


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** Doubles as as FridgeBrilliance for why Marsalis carries less psychological baggage than [[Literature/TakeshiKovacs Kovacs]] or [[Literature/ALandFitForHeroes Ringil]].


* CategoryTraitor: Most of the other thirteens view Marsalis as a traitor for hunting his own kind and capturing them for the UN.

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* CategoryTraitor: Most of the other thirteens view Marsalis as a traitor for hunting helping the UN hunt down and imprison his own kind and capturing them for the UN.kind.

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* CategoryTraitor: Most of the other thirteens view Marsalis as a traitor for hunting his own kind and capturing them for the UN.


** WordOfGod is that the book is set in the aftermath of a series of ill-conceived genetics experiments [[https://web.archive.org/web/20090804051247/http://www.yourmomsbasement.com/archives/2005/08/interview_with_2.html the author compares]] to 20th-century environmental abuse as an examination of "[[InTheblood heredity as destiny]]" and if people can defy their instincts; such topics are irrelevant in the Kovacs universe, where one ''can'' change one's body like clothing -- or refuse to. It can be considered an AlternateUniverse, the divergent point being the discovery of Martians - ''Broken Angels'' explicitly lists the date, and it has already passed in this book's timeline.

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** WordOfGod is that the book is set in the aftermath of a series of ill-conceived genetics experiments [[https://web.archive.org/web/20090804051247/http://www.yourmomsbasement.com/archives/2005/08/interview_with_2.html the author compares]] to 20th-century environmental abuse as an examination of "[[InTheblood "[[InTheBlood heredity as destiny]]" and if people can defy their instincts; such topics are irrelevant in the Kovacs universe, where one ''can'' change one's body like clothing -- or refuse to. It can be considered an AlternateUniverse, the divergent point being the discovery of Martians - ''Broken Angels'' explicitly lists the date, and it has already passed in this book's timeline.


** WordOfGod is that ''[[https://web.archive.org/web/20090804051247/http://www.yourmomsbasement.com/archives/2005/08/interview_with_2.html Black Man]]'', being set in the aftermath of a series of ill-conceived genetics experiments comparable to 20th-century environmental abuse, is an examination of "heredity as destiny" and if people can defy their instincts; such topics are irrelevant in the Kovacs universe, where one ''can'' change one's body like clothing -- or refuse to. It can be considered an AlternateUniverse, the divergent point being the discovery of Martians - ''Broken Angels'' explicitly lists the date, and it has already passed in this book's timeline.

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** WordOfGod is that ''[[https://web.the book is set in the aftermath of a series of ill-conceived genetics experiments [[https://web.archive.org/web/20090804051247/http://www.yourmomsbasement.com/archives/2005/08/interview_with_2.html Black Man]]'', being set in the aftermath of a series of ill-conceived genetics experiments comparable author compares]] to 20th-century environmental abuse, is abuse as an examination of "heredity "[[InTheblood heredity as destiny" destiny]]" and if people can defy their instincts; such topics are irrelevant in the Kovacs universe, where one ''can'' change one's body like clothing -- or refuse to. It can be considered an AlternateUniverse, the divergent point being the discovery of Martians - ''Broken Angels'' explicitly lists the date, and it has already passed in this book's timeline.


** WordOfGod is that ''[[https://web.archive.org/web/20090804051247/http://www.yourmomsbasement.com/archives/2005/08/interview_with_2.html Black Man]]'' -- set in the aftermath of a series of ill-conceived genetics experiments comparable to 20th-century environmental abuse -- is an examination of "heredity as destiny" and if people can defy their instincts; such topics are irrelevant in the Kovacs universe, where one ''can'' change one's body like clothing -- or refuse to. It can be considered an AlternateUniverse, the divergent point being the discovery of Martians - ''Broken Angels'' explicitly lists the date, and it has already passed in this book's timeline.

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** WordOfGod is that ''[[https://web.archive.org/web/20090804051247/http://www.yourmomsbasement.com/archives/2005/08/interview_with_2.html Black Man]]'' -- Man]]'', being set in the aftermath of a series of ill-conceived genetics experiments comparable to 20th-century environmental abuse -- abuse, is an examination of "heredity as destiny" and if people can defy their instincts; such topics are irrelevant in the Kovacs universe, where one ''can'' change one's body like clothing -- or refuse to. It can be considered an AlternateUniverse, the divergent point being the discovery of Martians - ''Broken Angels'' explicitly lists the date, and it has already passed in this book's timeline.


* BolivianArmyEnding: Debatable; [[spoiler:The book ends with a wounded Marsalis trapped in a house by a dozen gang-bangers. Even if Marsalis kills them all, he's got to get back to civilization to get his wounds treated... but they're a bunch of baselines who are already scared out of their wits, while he's a thirteen with multiple fully-loaded weapons and elite military training]]. The closing quip?

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* BolivianArmyEnding: Debatable; [[spoiler:The book ends with a wounded Marsalis trapped in a house by a dozen gang-bangers. Even if Marsalis kills them all, he's got to get back to civilization to get his wounds treated... but they're a bunch of baselines who are already scared out of their wits, while he's a thirteen with multiple fully-loaded weapons and elite military training]].training, while they're a baseline rabble that's ''already'' scared out of their wits]]. The closing quip?


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-->'''[[spoiler:Onbekend]]''': There you go. Thatís pure thirteen, brother. Donít play their fucking games, find a way to fuck them all instead. Marsalis, youíre it. Youíll do fine out there.


* HalfHumanHybrid: Nothing prevents human variants from breeding with baseline humans. Glossed over until the each of the {{Wham Line}}s happen. It's [[DiscussedTrope pointed out]] that nobody really knows what, if any, modified traits the offspring will inherit since most human variants have only been created in the last few decades.

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* HalfHumanHybrid: Nothing prevents human variants from breeding with baseline humans. Glossed over until the each of the {{Wham Line}}s happen. It's [[DiscussedTrope pointed out]] that nobody really knows what, if any, modified traits the offspring will inherit since most human variants have only been created in the last few decades.



* {{Jerkass}}: thirteens are Jerkass the Species. Navant, Marsalis, Keegan (the thirteen who extorts Ethan Conrad), and implied with Ethan Conrad. Merrin [[spoiler: and his twin Onbekend]] are outright evil. Everyone thirteen but Isaac Sutherland is an ass, who is never in an actual scene. A [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold heart of gold]] may accompany the jerkass part, but it's rare among them.

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* {{Jerkass}}: thirteens Thirteens are Jerkass Jerkass: the Species. Navant, Marsalis, Keegan (the thirteen who extorts Ethan Conrad), and implied with Ethan Conrad. Merrin [[spoiler: and his twin Onbekend]] are outright evil. Everyone thirteen but Isaac Sutherland is an ass, who is never in an actual scene. A [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold heart of gold]] may accompany the jerkass part, but it's rare among them.


* [[spoiler:BolivianArmyEnding]]: Debatable; [[spoiler:The book ends with a wounded Marsalis trapped in a house by a dozen gang-bangers. Even if Marsalis kills them all, he's got to get back to civilization to get his wounds treated... but they're a bunch of baselines who are already scared out of their wits, while he's a thirteen with multiple fully-loaded weapons and elite military training]]. The closing quip?

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* [[spoiler:BolivianArmyEnding]]: BolivianArmyEnding: Debatable; [[spoiler:The book ends with a wounded Marsalis trapped in a house by a dozen gang-bangers. Even if Marsalis kills them all, he's got to get back to civilization to get his wounds treated... but they're a bunch of baselines who are already scared out of their wits, while he's a thirteen with multiple fully-loaded weapons and elite military training]]. The closing quip?


* [[spoiler:BolivianArmyEnding]]: Debatable; [[spoiler:The book ends with a wounded Marsalis trapped in a house by a dozen gang-bangers. Even if Marsalis kills them all, he's got to get back to civilization to get his wounds treated... but he's a thirteen with multiple fully-loaded weapons and elite military training. They're a bunch of baselines who are already scared out of their wits]]. The closing quip?

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* [[spoiler:BolivianArmyEnding]]: Debatable; [[spoiler:The book ends with a wounded Marsalis trapped in a house by a dozen gang-bangers. Even if Marsalis kills them all, he's got to get back to civilization to get his wounds treated... but they're a bunch of baselines who are already scared out of their wits, while he's a thirteen with multiple fully-loaded weapons and elite military training. They're a bunch of baselines who are already scared out of their wits]].training]]. The closing quip?


-->"Look, the fucking cudlips, they talk such a great fight about equality, democratic accountability, freedom of expression. But what does it come down to in the end? [[spoiler:Ortiz. Norton. Roth]]. Plausible, power-grubbing men and women with a smile for the electors, the common fucking touch, and the same old agenda they've had since they wiped us out the first time around. And every cudlip fucker just lines right up for that shit. ...You know how you breed contemporary humans from a thirteen? You fucking domesticate them. Same thing they did with wolves to make them into dogs. Same thing they did with [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Domesticated_red_fox fox farming in Siberia back in the 1900s.]] You select for fucking ''tameness'', Marsalis. For lack of aggression, and for ''compliance''. Tell you how you get that. How you get a modern human. You get it by taking immature individuals, individuals showing the characteristics of fucking puppies. Area thirteen, man. It's one of the last parts of the human brain to develop, the final stages of human maturity. The part they bred out twenty thousand years ago because it was too dangerous to their fucking crop-growing plans. We aren't the variant, Marsalis-we're the last true humans. It's the cudlips that are the fucking twists. Modern humans are
fucking infantilized adolescent cutoffs. Is it any wonder they do what they're told? They tried to contain us. But we'll beat that.
We will, we're fucking ''wired'' to beat it. We're their last hope, Marsalis. We're what's going to rescue them from the Ortizes and the Nortons and the Roths. We're the only thing that scares those people, because we ''won't comply'', we won't stay infantile and go out and play nice in their plastic fucking world."

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-->"Look, the fucking cudlips, they talk such a great fight about equality, democratic accountability, freedom of expression. But what does it come down to in the end? [[spoiler:Ortiz. Norton. Roth]]. Plausible, power-grubbing men and women with a smile for the electors, the common fucking touch, and the same old agenda they've had since they wiped us out the first time around. And every cudlip fucker just lines right up for that shit. ...You know how you breed contemporary humans from a thirteen? You fucking domesticate them. Same thing they did with wolves to make them into dogs. Same thing they did with [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Domesticated_red_fox fox farming in Siberia back in the 1900s.]] You select for fucking ''tameness'', Marsalis. For lack of aggression, and for ''compliance''. Tell you how you get that. How you get a modern human. You get it by taking immature individuals, individuals showing the characteristics of fucking puppies. Area thirteen, man. It's one of the last parts of the human brain to develop, the final stages of human maturity. The part they bred out twenty thousand years ago because it was too dangerous to their fucking crop-growing plans. We aren't the variant, Marsalis-we're the last true humans. It's the cudlips that are the fucking twists. Modern humans are\nfucking infantilized adolescent cutoffs. Is it any wonder they do what they're told? They tried to contain us. But we'll beat that.\nWe will, we're fucking ''wired'' to beat it. We're their last hope, Marsalis. We're what's going to rescue them from the Ortizes and the Nortons and the Roths. We're the only thing that scares those people, because we ''won't comply'', we won't stay infantile and go out and play nice in their plastic fucking world."



** WordOfGod is that ''[[https://web.archive.org/web/20090804051247/http://www.yourmomsbasement.com/archives/2005/08/interview_with_2.html Black Man]]'' -- set in the aftermath of a series of ill-conceived genetics experiments comparable to 20th-century environmental abuse -- is an examination of "heredity as destiny" and if people can defy their instincts; such topics are irrelevant in the Kovacs universe, where it ''is'' change one's body like clothing -- or refuse to. It can be considered an AlternateUniverse, the divergent point being the discovery of Martians - ''Broken Angels'' explicitly lists the date, and it has already passed in this book's timeline.

to:

** WordOfGod is that ''[[https://web.archive.org/web/20090804051247/http://www.yourmomsbasement.com/archives/2005/08/interview_with_2.html Black Man]]'' -- set in the aftermath of a series of ill-conceived genetics experiments comparable to 20th-century environmental abuse -- is an examination of "heredity as destiny" and if people can defy their instincts; such topics are irrelevant in the Kovacs universe, where it ''is'' one ''can'' change one's body like clothing -- or refuse to. It can be considered an AlternateUniverse, the divergent point being the discovery of Martians - ''Broken Angels'' explicitly lists the date, and it has already passed in this book's timeline.



-->'''Marsalis''': "You don't understand what you're up against. You think because Merrin's killed a couple of dozen people, he's some kind of serial killer writ large? That's not what this is about. Serial killers are ''damaged'' humans. You know this, Sevgi, even if Tom here doesn't. They leave a trail, they leave clues, they get caught. And that's because in the end, consciously or subconsciously, they ''want'' to be caught. Calculated murder is an antisocial act, it's hard for humans to do, and it takes special circumstances at either a personal or a social level to enable the capacity. But that's you people. It's not me, and it's not Merrin, and it's not any variant thirteen. We're not like you. We're the witches. We're the violent exiles, the lone-wolf nomads that you bred out of the race back when growing crops and living in one place got so popular. We don't have, we don't need a social context. You have to understand this: ''there is nothing wrong with Merrin.'' He's not damaged. He's not killing these people as an expression of some childhood psychosis, he's not doing it because he's identified them as some dehumanized, segregated extratribal group. He's just carrying out a plan of action, and he is ''comfortable'' with it. And he won't get caught doing it-unless you can put me next to him."

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-->'''Marsalis''': "You don't understand what you're up against. You think because Merrin's killed a couple of dozen people, he's some kind of serial killer writ large? That's not what this is about. Serial killers are ''damaged'' humans. You know this, Sevgi, even if Tom here doesn't. They leave a trail, they leave clues, they get caught. And that's because in the end, consciously or subconsciously, they ''want'' to be caught. Calculated murder is an antisocial act, it's hard for humans to do, and it takes special circumstances at either a personal or a social level to enable the capacity. But that's you people. It's not me, and it's not Merrin, and it's not any variant thirteen. We're not like you. We're the witches. We're the violent exiles, the lone-wolf nomads that you bred out of the race back when growing crops and living in one place got so popular. We don't have, we don't need a social context. You have to understand this: ''there is nothing wrong with Merrin.'' He's not damaged. He's not killing these people as an expression of some childhood psychosis, he's not doing it because he's identified them as some dehumanized, segregated extratribal group. He's just carrying out a plan of action, and he is ''comfortable'' with it. And he won't get caught doing it-unless you can put me next to him."


* YouHaveNoIdeaWhoYoureDealingWith: Explored in the context of true HumanSubspecies; what make the thirteens so awesome and terrifying is that they are not ''super''human but ''other''human. It is ''abnormal'' for baseline humans to be [[TheUnfettered Unfettered]] {{Sociopath}}ic {{Badass}}es, and the process of developing those traits ''damages'' humans in [[ShellShockedVeteran predictable]] ways. Thirteens have those traits from birth, and have to ''learn'' to follow laws, recognize the rights of others, and deal with situations by means other than violence. This makes dealing with them a ''nightmare'' because where damaged humans have [[SanityHasAdvantages diminished capacity]], on-mission thirteens are firing on all cylinders.

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* YouHaveNoIdeaWhoYoureDealingWith: Explored in the context of true HumanSubspecies; what make the thirteens so awesome and terrifying is that they are not ''super''human but ''other''human. It is ''abnormal'' for baseline humans to be [[TheUnfettered Unfettered]] {{Sociopath}}ic {{Badass}}es, badasses, and the process of developing those traits ''damages'' humans in [[ShellShockedVeteran predictable]] ways. Thirteens have those traits from birth, and have to ''learn'' to follow laws, recognize the rights of others, and deal with situations by means other than violence. This makes dealing with them a ''nightmare'' because where damaged humans have [[SanityHasAdvantages diminished capacity]], on-mission thirteens are firing on all cylinders.


* StealthPrequel: For the ''Literature/TakeshiKovacs'' series, even though WordOfGod explicitly says it was not intended as one. Still, much of the backstory fits (right down to the chronology and details of the colonization of Mars, as well as numerous tech-related {{CallForward}}s), and it's stated that [[BodyBackupDrive cortical stacks]] are in the pipeline.

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* StealthPrequel: For the ''Literature/TakeshiKovacs'' series, even though WordOfGod explicitly says it was not intended as one. Still, much series. Much of the backstory fits (right down to the chronology and details of the colonization of Mars, as well as numerous tech-related {{CallForward}}s), and it's stated that [[BodyBackupDrive cortical stacks]] are in the pipeline.



** OTOH, it can be considered an AlternateUniverse, the divergent point being the discovery of Martians - ''Broken Angels'' explicitly lists the date, and it has already passed in this book's timeline.

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** OTOH, WordOfGod is that ''[[https://web.archive.org/web/20090804051247/http://www.yourmomsbasement.com/archives/2005/08/interview_with_2.html Black Man]]'' -- set in the aftermath of a series of ill-conceived genetics experiments comparable to 20th-century environmental abuse -- is an examination of "heredity as destiny" and if people can defy their instincts; such topics are irrelevant in the Kovacs universe, where it ''is'' change one's body like clothing -- or refuse to. It can be considered an AlternateUniverse, the divergent point being the discovery of Martians - ''Broken Angels'' explicitly lists the date, and it has already passed in this book's timeline.

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