In which Pat Rin is still missing, Ren Zel is still processing his change in circumstances, and Mr dea’Gauss is, as always, remarkable.
More evidence suggesting that this is actually Day 52: it was on Day 51 that Val Con and Miri learned that Pat Rin had disappeared, and it seems unlikely they’d wait an entire day before asking Nova if she knew anything.
Nova, by the sound of it, is still hoping that they might bring matters before the Council of Clans and have a solving without resorting to anything that might be described as a “war”. Val Con and Miri are less optimistic. I think I’d be with Val Con and Miri, even without the information (which we have and they don’t) that the Department is even now moving against Korval through the Council. (Indeed, considered from Val Con’s point of view, it might be said that it is already too late, and that the war has been going on, with casualties on both sides, for some considerable time already.)
Ren Zel, it appears, is of the dramliz (a thing for which there have been several hints already, which Ren Zel has been shying away from acknowledging), with power and potential that impresses even Anthora, who’s reputed to be one of the most powerful dramliz now living. In the scene where he explores the starweb of creation, he reminds me of the surpassingly powerful dramliz of the Migration-era prequels. (There are several other aspects of this match that remind me of the old dramliz, too – which is perhaps not to be wondered at, considering that this is the first “wizard’s match” we’ve seen since the prequels to occur between two actual wizards.)