Liaison describes one of many relationships, usually sexual in nature, that avout must declare publicly before their Math. These relationships can vary from extremely casual to the equivalence of marriage in the eyes of the Math. The Discipline prohibits secrecy about personal intimate relationships in order to prevent rumor mills, personal intrigue, or other distracting drama among the avout.
While the Dictionary mentions that liaisons are typically between one fraa and one suur, it does suggest other combinations or genders and/or numbers of involved are recognized. The only "non-standard" example in the book is between Magnath Foral and "another man who was his liaison-partner," as mentioned when Cell 317 arrives at Elkhazg. Magnath is specifically not an avout, so while Erasmas' non-reaction may infer this situation is not atypical, it is not direct evidence of same-gender liaisons among avout.
- Tivian is the least committed liaison recognized at Saunt Edhar.
- Etrevanean is recognized at Saunt Edhar and similar to "going steady."
- Atlanian is a liason between an avout, typically a Decenarian and an extra which can only be consummated during apert. It is named after an avout who wrote love poems during their separation in such a situation.
- Perelithian is the most committed liaison; equivalent to marriage.
- (1) In Old and later Orth, an intimate (typically sexual) relationship among some number of fraas and suurs. The number is almost always two. The most common arrangement is for one of these to be a fraa and the other a suur of approximately the same age. Liaisons are of several types. Four types were mentioned by Ma Cartas in the Discipline. She forbade all of them. Later in the Old Mathic Age, a liaison between Saunt Per and Saunt Elith became famous when their hoards of love-letters were unearthed following their deaths. Shortly before the Rebirth, several maths took the unusual step of altering the Discipline to sanction the Perelithian liaison, meaning a permanent liaison between one fraa and one suur. The Revised Book of Discipline, adopted at the time of the Reconstitution, described eight types and sanctioned two. The Second New Revised Book of Discipline describes seventeen, sanctions four, and winks at two others. Each of the sanctioned liaisons is subject to certain rules, and is solemnized by an aut in which the participants agree, in the presence of at least three witnesses, to abide by those rules. Orders or concents that deviate from the Discipline by sanctioning other types of liaisons are subject to disciplinary action by the Inquisition. It is permissible, however, for an order or concent to sanction fewer types; those that sanction zero types are, of course, nominally celibate.
- (2) A Late Praxic Age bulshytt term, as such, impossible to define clearly, but apparently having something to do with contacts or relations between entities.
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