sheliak: (fantasy)
[personal profile] sheliak
The first two chapters of The Gates of Tagmeth are readable on the Baen website.

I'm wondering about the source of those disasters that seemed to befall Gothregor while Tori and Jame were both in residence.

The storm could, theoretically, be pure Rathillien—the Falling Man doesn't much like Jame, after all. But the mold seems more definitely Kencyr in origin—and it seemed to be actively growing while Tori and Jame had their fight. Fueled by it, perhaps.

And that's odd. I don't think that it's Jame's doing—her powers of destruction seem unlikely to cause unfettered growth, even of something inconvenient and disgusting. Tori's, maybe: he's in turmoil, and he's a creator, which I suppose could fit the symptoms: he's uncomfortable with Jame's presence, angry at her and unhappy with himself, and his unacknowledged power is lashing out. But that doesn't seem quite right either. Especially when Tori's spread so thin these days.

Two theories.

First: It could be something that Jame and Tori are doing together, or something that's happening simply because of their proximity—two partially-realized Tyr-Ridan, neither in full control of themselves, nemesis and creator, and at odds with each other. Maybe this type of mess is to be expected. (The counterargument, of course, is that nothing of the kind has happened when they've been alone with Kindrie. But for one thing, Kindrie's own abilities might minimize this kind of disruption—preservation is inherently stable. And for another, there isn't nearly the same level of tension between Kindrie and either of the twins; he and Jame have made peace with each other, and as much as Kindrie admires Tori, Tori's response to him isn't that personal.)

Second: Ganth is currently something of a malevolent ghost, possessing his son and squatting in Tori's soul-image. And although we know Ganth was Shanir—a berserker and blood-binder—we don't know what aspect of the Three-Faced God he was most closely tied to—it's even possible that he had gifts in multiple directions. Perhaps he's to blame for this—either entirely, or tainting Tori's own gifts, as he sometimes speaks through his mouth?

With Jame living so close to Restormir (a choice I rather agree with—even if she didn't want to be on the opposite side of the Riverlands from her brother, it's probably much safer for everyone just now), I imagine we'll be seeing a lot of the Caineron. Maybe this will be the book where Caldane dies? I've wondered if either he or Rawneth might, before the final book of the series. But maybe that's just wishful thinking—I really loathe Caldane.

I hope to see some of Gorbel—he's one of my unexpected favorites—but I don't think there's been any hint of where he is, so far. I think his year at Kothifir would have ended at the same Jame and her ten got their new assignments, but I'm not sure.

Kallystine acting as Matriarch? She's got to be as bad at the job as her father is at his. But it does make me wonder--how are Matriarchs chosen, usually? Does Cattila get to pick her successor, is it a matter for the council, or what? I somehow doubt it's the lord's choice.

I'm a bit amused at how quickly Kallystine seems to have turned against her father. But then, if she's no longer a favored pawn, her ambitions need a new outlet...

And on a lighter note, I find the image of Lyra trying to make divided skirts for herself awfully endearing. And it's interesting to see her imitate Brenwyr in addition to Jame.


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