Accepting the Lance – Chapter 62

Six of Us
Daglyte Seam

In which Claidyne ven’Orikle has not learned from experience.

I want to take a moment to acknowledge the work the Scouts have been doing. They’ve been very busy off-screen rolling up bits of the Department while we’ve been following our favourite characters around.

I feel like there have been more scenes of people having to wait for atmospheric pressure to equalise in this book than there have been in the entire rest of the series to date. That might just be a coincidence of the habitats they’re visiting, but I’ll be impressed if it somehow turns out to be foreshadowing for something. On the other hand, it could just be that it makes a useful excuse to make the characters sit still and talk about what they’re going to do next.

I’m not sure what’s left for Tarona Rusk to do now, unless it’s to go after the Commander of Agents in person.

Speaking of Scouts, as I was a moment ago, I’ve been struck with a thought that’s probably too tidy to actually be going to happen, but I’ll mention it anyway because then I’ll feel very clever if it’s true: Daav and Aelliana, when we last saw them, were off to accompany a Scout Strategist who was going to see to a “rather delicate decommissioning”. What if Department Headquarters is what he’s coming to decommission?

4 thoughts on “Accepting the Lance – Chapter 62

  1. Ed8r

    Have we seen Kethi’s surname before this—I mean the designation “vay”? Kinda appropriate for a Healer don’t you think (vay = fey)?

    And here we see my observations mentioned in the comments for the last chapter come to their sum: 2 + 2 = the command desk being rigged to strike down whoever would dare to take over after the Commander left. I was crying “No-no-nooooooo…not Rys!” Whew. The authors had something else in mind for him.

    PA: I’m not sure what’s left for Tarona Rusk to do now

    I’ve got my fingers crossed for her to do a “crossover event” and show up for the end of Trader’s Leap*.

    PA: What if Department Headquarters is what he’s coming to decommission?

    Once again, you picked up on a point that was just white noise for me when I read it. But when one *does* think about it, it becomes fun to watch for whether “that thought” plays out as expected. I don’t write my projections down so usually they just drop away as the actual plot proceeds, and I never think of them again. Occasionally, there will be one or two that stick in my craw, where I’m still saying “Why didn’t they XXX—it would have worked so much better?” but those moments are few and far between.

    *either that, or a short story…ya never know.

  2. Skip

    As to that…too much of this book felt rather like a damp squid to me, in contrast to the hoped-for pace and momentum of AGENT OF CHANGE or PLAN B. Some reasons why:

    1) All the off-screen activity by the scouts, Tarona Rusk, etc. Not knowing what they were up to left holes in my understanding of the strategic game plan for destroying the DOI. Also, I’d have liked to see Rusk in action against DOI.
    1.2) It felt like “nothing to see here, folks. Job’s already been done!” I expected it to be the same if Daav and Aelli arrived at DOI HQ.

    2) All the general obscurity and obfuscation in writing style, which began to feel coy and confusing, thereby diminishing my interest .

    3) all the scene jumping, leaving the reader not sure what just happened in that chapter, especially with the two guys working on Old Tech. Not understanding what I just read didn’t spur momentum or incite curiosity for me, but rather it triggered frustration

    Sadly, it was with some dissatisfaction that I finished the book that took down the DOI.

    Nonetheless I found myself quite enjoying some scenes.

  3. Paul A. Post author

    Ed8r, I believe this is the first time we’ve seen a character with the vay’ prefix.

    I… did not have such an excited reaction to Rys being struck down. By this point, between all the stuff Skip mentions and the foreshadowing about the Bedel having a backup plan, I was never in much suspense about whether he’d make it. Especially after Master Healer vay’Elin up and said that he’d either die or make a full recovery, because I didn’t believe for a moment the authors were going to kill him off entirely.

  4. Ed8r

    Paul, my dismay did not last even to the end of the chapter; it was genuine in the moment but ultimately short-lived. 😉

    btw, I’m also dismayed today on behalf of our authors, who lost one of their feline friends on Wednesday. :’ (

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