I just started Chapter Forty-Two of Scylla and Charybdis.
Sadly, it is not an appropriate place for a Douglas Adams homage.
Good thing I paused at that point, though: I have to go back to the first several chapters and brush up on the exact sequence of events that caused Anaea to leave the station in the first place, especially as relates to Valasca - who has come back into play as an antagonist, but if you think I can remember more than broad strokes any more ...
(I love Amazon names. They're so evocative. Thalestris. Valasca. Toxaris.)
This novel has developed intensely in the writing. It still follows (more or less) the basic shape I imagined, but the details were so much more important and interesting than I had realized. One of the main "details" I didn't even plan for is Flick, who is Anaea's guide and friend while Gwydion is out of the picture. So I invented him on the spur of the moment, found him massively entertaining to write, but figured that was it.
Then I find him stowing away en route to the final chapters. And now he's head over heels in geeklove with the programmer trying to block his hacking attempts - because who doesn't appreciate a challenge?
Gwydion and Flick interact badly, not because there's any romantic rivalry, but because they're on opposite ends of the code-of-honor spectrum. Gwydion's a small step away from being a white knight; Flick is a rogue with a hint of a Machiavellian streak.
The word count is going to come in well in excess of "reasonable length," but I know already that there's a lot of fat that can be trimmed - side detours that can be shortened (maybe cut, though I know myself and I usually have at least one good reason for keeping them), descriptions that will be too long and / or repetitive, and even, on the micro level, unnecessarily verbose sentences.
But I can see the finish line now. Right now, I have to tackle the next plot point, where I know what I want to happen, but not precisely how ... and then I have the last couple chapters mapped out to a T. Huzzah.