It may be a very long day for Pel, but it's a very long week of waiting for another update for those of us who are reading this. :) Oh well, it gives me something else to look forward to - besides the fact that school will be out for the summer next Friday... us teachers are always more excited than the kids!
Anyway, another wonderful chapter. I was glad that Pel and Aldan at least began talking again, though I wish Pel would loosen up and seek help. But, I know that young men of that age just don't do that. They try to tough things out themselves, especially if they're in that sort of military environment where it goes against the 'code'. In that sense your story reminds me of Pat Conroy's story, 'Lords of Discipline' which is set in The Citadel and is another time when boys won't speak up when they are being harassed and the consequences are dire, which I sense is where this is heading.
I was glad that Imri showed up, I wondered where he'd been and I hoped that if he was around Pel and Elethil, then the other esquires might ease off some, too. But sometimes things have built up too much steam and it takes something more drastic to stop it, unfortunately.
So, are they checking on Andra to see if he's a spy? I'm assuming that that is why they were asking Pel the questions they were... not to see if Pel knew the answers but to check on Andra. I suppose it could also have been just to see if Pel would complain about Andra's treatment - if it had been bad - but the questions didn't seem like those kinds of questions to me. I was just thinking back to Andra's interview with that first man - I can't remember his name - and he seemed like a spy and I wonder if they're watching him because they're still not sure if they can trust him. Well, I'm sure it will all come out in your marvelous story!
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 Reviewer:Isabeau Date:June 8, 2007 10:56 AM
Great chapter, Dwim! It delineates Andrahar's dilemma very well, the sense of unease, of not-belonging that he still feels at this time. The explanation about Harthil and his reasons for teaching the Haradric tongue in such a dry way are rather chilling. The man is a snake. Andra's conflicting oaths are beginning to be quite a problem. Though his last conversation with Peloren was oddly hopeful to me-at least the two of them were talking.
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 Reviewer:obsidianj Date:June 9, 2007 12:53 AM
There is one good thing about vacation. I get to read more chapters in a row and don't have to wait so long for each new chapter.
Uh, oh that does not bode well for Elethil. While I was away I tried to remember all the names of swan knights out of Isabeaus' stories and tried to remember which names show up again. .. OK, there may be a number of reasons why knights die, but I have a bad feeling about Elethil since he came up with the vile brew that gave them nearly alcohol poisoning. Elethil is the quiet type, who never speaks until it is too late. It bothered me that he started to avoid Peloren and seems to be getting worse and worse. I still hope they find him before he does something irrevocably but otoh the story might demand his sacrifice.
Harthil seems to be a bad piece of work. Is he the spymaster of Dol Amroth? He is certainly paranoid and crafty enough.
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 Reviewer:obsidianj Date:June 16, 2007 1:02 AM
That is quite a surprising twist. Going from concern over Elethil to having to defend the villagers from pirates. And we still don't know what happened to Elethil. Poor Pel, he hasn't found his friend and is now not in an enviable position. From all people he is stuck with it had to be Andra, but maybe that will help them see better eye to eye than any long discussion.
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 Reviewer:Elena Tiriel Date:June 27, 2007 12:15 PM
Parley? *Parley???* That's pretty much the last thing I expected to read!
Well, Dwim, this story has caught me by the -- er, um, wait, I don't have any of *those*, being female -- oh, yes, caught me by the cockles of my heart -- yeah, that's it! I got so caught up in it, that I practically inhaled the whole thing at one sitting.
I love your characters, Andrahar most of all, but I especially enjoy that every single one is an interesting, three-dimensional, real, and really flawed individual!
I was especially intrigued by Andrahar's musings about Harthil a couple of chapters back, about how his bigotry against Haradrim contributed to subtly poisoning the learning of the esquires... that is fascinating! You clearly have a true love of linguistics to write so articulately about the use -- and abuse -- of a language.
I am really caught up in and sympathetic to Peloren's, Elithil's, and Andrahar's struggles here. You have a gift for touching your reader emotionally.
But I have to say -- confronting Corsairs is just about the last thing I imagined would happen in this story! And I can't wait to see how it develops from here....
Thank you for sharing it with us!
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 Reviewer:Nargil Date:June 29, 2007 12:29 PM
I loved this chapter, sorry there's been no reviews for a couple of weeks I was away, I'm following this still.
I'm glad Elya is ok hopefully we'll see Andra in the next chapter.
Myself and Rochnariel are of to Turkey tonight but we'll catch up when I get back in a couple of weeks
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 Reviewer:horsiegurl Date:June 30, 2007 4:36 AM
Hi, I have read Isabeau's stories and love them. Then I saw this and knew I had to read it. In chapter 10 there are many weird symbols. I do not know what they are from. They seem to be were apostrophe's are. Maybe some other symbols. It made this chapter difficult to read. This is a great story.
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 Reviewer:obsidianj Date:July 3, 2007 1:12 PM
What? Parley? That took me by surprise. What in the world do they want to talk about? But at least parley would buy Andrahar and Peloren some time. Either to get to a peaceful ending, which I doubt, or for Imrahil to bring help. The longer they don't have to fight, the better for our two heroes. I just hope Imrahil arrives soon. I don't think Andrahar and Peloren can hold on much longer with only the villagers for help.
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 Reviewer:obsidianj Date:July 3, 2007 3:54 PM
The Haradrim have a weird concept of parley. Poor Peloren. He is stressed out as it is and deciphering the code of conduct of the Haradrim is a bit much in that situation. Once you think about it, it makes some sort of sense in a weird way. Luckily Andrahar has a better grasp of the situation and can step in before Peloren gets killed.
I feel relief that Elethiel is still alive. Luckily, he wasn't "brave" enough to commit suicide. I think it might take more "bravery" not to give up but go back.
Ornendil now has a real mess on his hands. I'm curious what he will do. There have to be some real changes and some very blunt, open words concerning customs and dealings within the Swan Knights. I don't envy him his task of explaining the whole mess to Adrahil.
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 Reviewer:obsidianj Date:July 10, 2007 1:01 PM
Finally, the long overdue conversation. If nothing else comes out of it, at least Andrahar, Peloren and Elethil found a truce and I think some respect for each other. But now off to address the deeper problem: How to overcome a lifetime of prejudice. Some people will be unable to change. They will have to retire... or simply have to die out ;-). The swan knights are a well-educated bunch. The chances for them to overcome their prejudice, once it is acknowledged, are greater than for the average ignorant peasant. But as modern terrorism shows, it is not a guarantee. I think it depends now largely on the tone the masters and teachers will set in the future. So far they were part of the problem. I'm looking forward to Ornendil's plan...
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