Celebration Sneak Peak

In celebration of passing p. 600, draft, here it is! Short & sweet, because most of this volume is but major, for spoilers.

Please note: the following is copyright material, to the author - you are asked not to remove or disseminate it from this site.


The wind had dropped to a whisper, then stilled, the brisk scent left by the rain storm overlayed by a stinging, fresh frost. Talvish huddled into the oiled wool cloak, brought back from his loan to Fianzia. Off duty, but still armed since his side trip to Dame Dawr's that had ended inside a wrecked tavern, he paused on the exposed trail that led up the stone peak that crowned the swept height of the citadel. There, Watch Point's high tower cut a stark outline against the starred vault of the sky. Under the steel edged rim of his helm, his jade eyes surveyed Mearn, who had paused on the grass ledge by the open stair, carved into the rugged cliff head.

"Are you sure, Captain?" the youngest brother s'Brydion asked. "Be certain, now. Or turn back." Slim as a forlorn child, he huddled in his jeweled doublet. The odd opal stud flared errant fire, splintered by light as he shivered. His wretched state was not only due to the cold. The elegant rapier at his waist was not a fit weapon for war time; he had always hated the blood sport of the hunt with a passion. Even so, his taut frame had the set of a man who was pressed beyond desperate, and dangerous.

Nor was his plea spurious.

Talvish's mood, tonight, held no railing humor. "Go up there, you're going to need backing, my friend."

originally posted by Blue

Ooo… is Fianzia Talvish's girlfriend? :smiley:

"Pressed beyond desperate, and dangerous."

Mearn has always reminded me of a tasmanian devil, just without the racket. Not someone to mess with!

originally posted by Hannah

Woohoo!! Very tasty tidbit!

*off to face a Monday morning marginally happier*

originally posted by Wendy Collett

What can you say? Dame Dawr is once again a real party animal! Always knows how to show a guy a good time with a tavern brawl…

hmmm, on second thought, she probably wasn't involved, but still, got to watch that cane!


T'would be interesting to see a citadel map, and one of some of the other major towns such as Etarra and such, especially showing the Lanes as they pass through…

(similar to the one with Hell's Chasm).


Fianzia - you'll know her in Stormed Fortress as Mearn's wife. She's been mentioned, other volumes, but here she comes forward, on stage.

originally posted by Blue

Cool! I would LOVE to see the woman Dame Dawr chose as a match for Mearn. Perhaps my Tasmanian Devil analogy is not so far off the mark. I saw a documentary on the critters, and wow, are they ferocious!

originally posted by Hunter

Did Talvish leave poor Fianzia to freeze when he swiped her coat? it's probably a presumption all this happens at Alestron?

The question of course (only to be answered when SF is released) is who or what Mearn might be going up to see?

originally posted by Hannah

Presumably thy're at Alestron, with the reference to a recent visit to Dame Dawr's, and the mention of "Watch Point's high tower", which sounds like something to be found in Alestron.

So, if they are in Alestron, who or what could Mearn be facing that would involve desperation and danger. Why is he improperly dressed and armed (in a hurry, or unable to access his own weapons/clothes at home?) for the danger he's to be facing? And what could be so dangerous that he would need backing in Alestron itself? Is the 'wrecked tavern' a related incident–and if so, who wrecked it?

Wild speculation: Lysaer is already 'in resident' and has made accusations of treachery that Mearn is just now returning to address… It's mentioned that his rapier is unsuitable for war time, so maybe the [bleep] has already hit the fan…

Very intriguing snippet indeed!!


originally posted by Hunter

I'm wondering whether Bransian, at the urging of any or all of his relatives, is rather belatedly trying to succour support through the original foundations of the clanborn order on Athera.

-> Caithdien?
-> Fellowship?
-> Paravians?

Alestron was after all a Paravian Citadel in the Second Age if not the First. Although it doesn't seem to have a Paravian power focus, there was no power focus in Daon Ramon when Jieret's distress allowed the return of the Ilitharis Paravian to defend "his brother". Jieret as the land and the land as Jieret heard the distress and the Paravian answered… would love to see another Paravian return at Alestron.

Lysaer has many points of "discussion" with the s'Brydion that he's come across Athera to address.

originally posted by skeoke

Missed this completely!!!

Have to be careful, only lurking part time.

To me, this is the most interesting and exciting bit yet. Can't wait to find out what's going on.

Like baking; wonderful aroma but nothing to taste yet.

It's fun to enjoy the waiting.

originally posted by R’is’n

How did I miss this? Thanks Skeoke! hrraaahahaha… I just got chills reading it.
I really love this aspect of the writing. You feel like you are not only learning about characters, but something that you can relate to everyday living.

I was rereading COTM again, (I've got a nasty recurring flu and am abed, and all my head can handle is WoLaS… :smiley: Go figure…!)

I came across a typical example of Janny's superb attention to detail: Lysaer is sizing up Arithon at the banquet; Arithon's natural preference for privacy suggests to Lysaer, a character that is prone to being unforgiving, yet he talks to the raiding party members without any sense of harbouring grudges. Seems like an example of his gift of compassion working, if Lysaer's insight was accurate -which, pre-curse I think it was.

*grin* Shall we start to promote WoLaS as a cure-all? :wink:

originally posted by Tadgh

Theres goin to be a bit of infighting in the family. Mearn comes to realise Arithon was right and is pushed into saving the clan. He's goin against Bransian and so Talvish is adding back up. Mearn is giving Talvish a chance not to go against his duke.

Thats just my own speculating

Riveting stuff Janny, keep up the good work.
SF will be devoured within the day once i get it

originally posted by Nathan

Devoured within the day?!?!?!

Personally I will be savouring every moment of the experience, desperately trying to make it last as long as possible.

After all, you wouldn't wolf down an Aberdeen Angus fillet steak smothered in a warm stilton sauce as if it were a $1 cheeseburger would you?

Janny, can't wait, can't wait’CAN'T WAIT!!! : )

originally posted by Auna

For me, there is always a struggle between enjoying the journey and getting to the end. Since this is the close of an arc, this struggle to not devour it quickly will be a harder one.

There is no way I'd ever be able to sleep after I begin reading this book unless somehow it was actually boring (ya right :p). So, devoured within the day will apply to me… the 'day' will just be long :wink:

originally posted by Tadgh

Does one savour a wait let me think…an Aberdeen Angus fillet steak when one has been inthe desert for a year with no sustenance, that is of course one survived. I think NOT!!!
Second or even third time one it may be savoured leaving one truly full filled(ha ha) and satisfied.

originally posted by Tadgh

Does one savour a wait let me think…an Aberdeen Angus fillet steak when one has been in the desert for a year with no sustenance, that is of course one survived. I think NOT!!!
Second or even third time round it may be savoured leaving one truly full filled(ha ha) and satisfied.

originally posted by Bec

When a new book comes out I do a very quick (speed) read of the new book - just to satisfy my curiosity. Then start the in depth read - as I know "what's going to happen" I can then read slowly and carefully so I don't miss anything. THEN I re-read the whole series from the start to see how the new book ties in and where the clues were about where the story was going (I am sure I miss a lot of the clues!!). This way I quench my initial thirst and then rehydrate myself completely!! (carrying on the desert theme!!)

originally posted by R’is’n

I'm going to try to savour this one. I've been a glutton before… well… we'll see when the book actually falls into my grubby mitts… :smiley:

originally posted by R’is’n

"since his side trip to Dame Dawr's that had ended inside a wrecked tavern"

I'm wondering - is Dame Dawr still at the Alestron castle? Is Mearn actually planning to infiltrate the citadel? Is that why Talvish is offering support? This would mean that they abandoned the fortress in the end…?

Another idea is that Jeynsa has arrived at Alestron and spoken to the family about Arithon's "sorcery" … Mearn and Talvish perhaps preparing for the possibility of 'hunting' Arithon to face charges…?

Or, Mearn left the citadel in some kind of disgrace, and is now returning because he feels compelled to be with his family… or perhaps worse… the fortress has been stormed, and there are only a few survivors… and he's the only one left to carry the dukedom? *shudder* I hope not!

originally posted by skeoke

If the testing of princes is the caithdain's job, what happens when the caithdain is wrong?

With such dire charges supported by the caithdain, and Arithon making such ridiculous demands, what will the s'Brydion do? Dame Dawr trusted and supported Arithon's mad scheme, is she brawling with her grandsons?

The more I consider, the more eager I am to find out!

(especially since last time I was way, way off base.)

Fun, fun, fun.

when's it due out again??