Dicebox is set IN SPACE! and in the future, but most definitely not a Space Opera. This low-key Slice of Life saga concerns a married couple, Griffen and Molly, aimlessly traveling from world to world. The Metaplot concerns the Mysterious Past of one of the two principal characters, now coming back to haunt her. Beautifully rendered and novelistic.
- Embarrassing First Name: Molly's name is actually Benecia. She has given up answering to it to the point that she misses her name being called in official areas (as it's still her legal name) and ends up having to spend twice as much time waiting to be called again. Eventually Griffen loses her patience and pays for Molly to change her name.
- Everybody Has Lots of Sex: Marriage appears to be more of an emotional relationship in the future.
- Family Theme Naming: Griffen, Basilisk and Chimera (who prefers Phyllis).
- Fingore: Molly is missing the third finger on her right hand. As yet, it is not clear how she lost it, but flashbacks tend towards the bloody and freshly lost.
- Gender-Blender Name: Mary Rafferty X is a man, unusual for a matrilineal line.
- Hallucinations: Molly sees them from time to time and is unable to hear other people while she is having them. The cause is unknown, but she appears to have some sort of precognition or telepathy (or at least intuition) through them, once seeing her wife having a pleasant conversation that shades into a hallucination of the other person snapping her neck. They have become so routine to her that when she and Griffen come across unusual things such as strange bugs, Molly initially assumes they're a hallucination and ignores them or nonchalantly waves them off. Griffen has expressed surprise and occasionally exasperation with how Molly treats her hallucinations, unreal or real.Griffen: Look, Molly, even if you think I can't see something, don't throw it at or on me. It's just rude.
- Indestructible Edible: Soicheez.Molly: You pulled it out of the wreck.Griffen: As, as an insulator. As a cure for foot rot. As a thousand other things that are definitively not food.Molly: Damn, really? We're having this conversation? It is food, Griffen, a great source of protein, in fact-Griffen: Yes, that "keeps as near to forever as you can get." So, it doesn't decay. Meaning it doesn't break down. Therefore, protein or no, it's not food.
- Missing Mom:
Griffen: It just occurs to me, you should be in school. Explain why you're not.Rhys: Simple. It's first break, I took a tour.Griffen: Oh, sure. So simple. And just how and when are you going to rejoin this tour?Rhys: I don't have to, ah- I'm an adult now, you know?Griffen: You're an idiot. Go home Rhys. Get back to school and learn.Rhys: You're horrible and I don't have to do what you say-Griffen: That's right, because Phyllis is now your legal guardian! Aren't you grateful that I left you with her? Considering what a bitch I am! Now GO! slams hands down for emphasis
- Inverted with the Stoykas. Griffen is the Missing Mom in question and one of the protagonists, while her son is a secondary character.
- Although she's still alive, Molly's mother is one unwittingly. She writes letters to Molly, but Molly had never known until very recently. Molly is very angry with Baka about this.
- Mundane Utility: In the future, everybody has neural implants... which they mostly use to keep updated on things like when the next bus will arrive. When Griffen has to be collared against her using the larger possibilities of her implant, she complains that it's these little things that annoy her the most.
- Noodle Incident: Griffen and the planet Auster.Griffen: —which you knew, of course. I'll just shut up now, shall I?Molly: Mostly because we've had this conversation before. The last time we were here.Griffen: No, I've never been to Auster.Molly: Yeah you have. Well, most of you anyway.Griffen: No...?Molly: Yes. Not surprised you don't remember after that kilo of janga. You know, that you kept going at for your nerves? beat After your run-in at Rydal?
- One-Word Title
- Too Clever by Half: Griffen, as Burt points out, could easily have disappeared if she hadn't insisted on every aspect of her disappearance being stunningly amazing. She forged a Baron's pardon from her highly top-secret work and disappeared, and then set it up so that she also reported to a parole officer who just happened to be her disappeared/dead brother. And made it look like those reports came from the Baron's office.
- Vagabond Buddies: Griffen and Molly, naturally.
- Viewer Gender Confusion: Griffen caused a fair amount of confusion for readers early on. Word of God: 'Griffens sex is female. Her gender is a little more elusive (as is anyones).'