Dors Venabili

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Dors Venabili is a fictional character in Isaac Asimov's Foundation Series. She is a good friend, protector and later wife of Hari Seldon, the primary character of Prelude to Foundation and Forward the Foundation. At face value, Venabili is a woman two years younger than Seldon, in her own words not very good-looking. She tells Seldon that she is a historian from Cinna, and, before her involvement in The Flight, Venabili taught history classes at Streeling University on Trantor.

Venabili has been assigned the task of protecting Hari Seldon by Chetter Hummin (one of several aliases used by R. Daneel Olivaw) who takes an initial interest in Hari Seldon's psychohistory research. Over the course of Prelude to Foundation and Forward the Foundation she shows an obsessive concern for his safety and earns the nickname "The Tiger Woman" for the ferocity with which she is willing to defend him, and her accuracy, reflexes, and skill (all thought to be superhuman to the point of feline). Despite that, throughout her lifetime protecting Seldon, she was always reluctant to harm opponents in the course of protecting her husband. This is a result of her being bound by the Laws of Robotics.

Toward the end of Prelude to Foundation, Seldon reveals his suspicion that Venabili is a human-appearing robot working with R. Daneel Olivaw on his mission to protect mankind. (Clues that reveal Venabili's true nature include her learning to master a weapon skillfully and immediately after watching a gangster use it just once.) A talk with Venabili pretty obviously confirms his supposition, even though the word "robot" is not spoken here. Still, the issue has no apparent effect on Seldon's love for Venabili, and even though she concludes the talk "So you see, Hari. I'm not really what you want." Seldon is unperturbed, thinking about his protectress and future wife in love.

Venabili tries to help Seldon also as a historian. Their talks on the former Kingdom of Trantor make Seldon consider the planet as a provisional model for the then still very immature psychohistory.

Together with Seldon, Venabili raises Raych, whom they encounter as a 12-year-old boy while in the Dahl sector of Trantor.

Venabili dies in Seldon's arms after being his spouse for 28 years, apparently as a result of both the EM damage inflicted during the attempt on her life by a traitor in Seldon's ranks, Tamwile Elar, and a violation of the First Law of Robotics as Venabili kills Elar in defense of the Psychohistorical Project, thus essentially choosing to follow the Zeroth Law and suffering a fate similar to that of R. Giskard Reventlov. When dying, Venabili confesses to Seldon that thanks to him she felt like a human being.

In the original Asimov books, it is unknown if Venabili has been repaired after the damage. In the epilogue of Forward the Foundation, Seldon's last word was "Dors!", yet it is not specified, if he met her, or if it is only an exclamation of a man longing for his dead spouse. Venabili reappears only in The Second Foundation Trilogy, after her apparent death, having been repaired by Daneel. She is originally assigned new duties, but has difficulty adapting to them. Having been built for the specific purpose of caring for Hari Seldon, her absence from his life and her knowledge of his impending death give her new perspective on Daneel's orders. Eventually, she leaves his service entirely, and it is implied that she takes up with the robot Lodovik Trema, but only after one final visit to her husband, whose last recorded word was her name.