In which Aelliana proposes a solution.
Once again it’s Aelliana who gets to make the decisive move instead of Daav swooping in and rescuing her. (I may be labouring this point a bit. But seriously, how many novels are there where that happens?)
I am particularly interested by the part of Aelliana’s proposal which has her paying the blood-price for Ran Eld’s death when Sinit becomes Delm. There are several things going on here. For one, it gives Mizel an inducement to accept Sinit as nadelm, where her mother’s actions have cast doubt on the hope that she might accept as much simply because it’s the sensible course. It also serves a practical purpose in ensuring that when Sinit becomes delm there will be an amount of money she can rely on, no matter how the clan’s fortunes may have suffered in the mean time. There’s also some shifty work going on with the melant’i of the situation. I still don’t think that Aelliana truly owes Mizel anything for Ran Eld’s death, but by accepting the blood-price as her debt she’s making sure Mizel can’t try to stick it to anybody else (such as Daav); and by specifying that the payment will be made to Birin Caylon’s successor, the result will be that Birin Caylon gets the promise of an apology but never the apology itself.