Sexuality has been thematically lurking in the background of the novel, but with the revelations of Mike's kissing abilities in Chapter XVII, Heinlein suggests that Mike may have sexual super powers as potent as his telekinetic powers, and sex comes firmly to the forefront of the novel's concerns. Though there has been a good deal of jocular flirtation from all of the characters heretofore—Ben has spoken suggestively to Jill, Jubal has leered at his beautiful secretaries, and Mike has demonstrated innocent fascination with women's bodies—it is only in the series of kisses in Chapter XVII that Mike becomes a fully sexualized character. If he can kiss in a way that makes all the women swoon, we can imagine it is only a matter of time before his sexuality becomes central to his identity and the way he relates to the other characters. For a man who has been raised as the only member of his species, his introduction to sexuality also is a major step on his journey toward full integration into humanity.