Anyway, before this sequence became about Flo and me yelling at each other, it was first about getting all the readers to yell at Shanna!

This is a tangled topic I can talk about from many perspectives, but let’s focus on the Watsonian issues first (we’ll get to the Doylist ones tomorrow). In her Fans incarnation, Shanna embedded with the Science Fiction Club, as it was always at the center of some news story. A few factors kept that club from expelling her despite her anti-geek sentiment: a best friend in the scene, tolerant leadership, a collegiate group curious about this outsider or spoiling for argument with an easily provoked authority figure, and a series of obvious external threats that’d make friends out of anyone who fought them bravely and as a team.

This incarnation doesn’t have any of that going for her at this point. Xan has barely exchanged a handful of PMs with this new social circle and spent a few tense hours with Shanna, and the social circle in question is also older and from a later era of fandom. Chrissie, her contact, is tolerant but not really a leader. They’re less likely to accept some near-rando who shows an interest in them, scornful or otherwise. The odds are already against Shanna swaying them to her cause, and here she is, ready to make them insurmountable.

Xan is completely right. Practical concerns are all that really count here. But… it wouldn’t have made much sense for Shanna’s issues to vanish as soon as they became impractical. She could mostly suspend them with Joel but probably feels more threatened by a group. As Xan will point out tomorrow, this shit’s got to be addressed, or else she’s going to go into the most important meeting of her life with a cluttered mind.