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TMOHD Chapter 10: Last Alend Ambassador

 
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 07, 2003 1:34 am    Post subject: TMOHD Chapter 10: Last Alend Ambassador Reply with quote

In chapter 10 I found one of those pivotal theme statements that books and series and characters pivot around:
Quote:
There is no life which does not posses its own importance, no life which may not be touched with greatness and have a hand in it.


At the beginning of the chapter, Saddith has just fetched Terisa from the rooms of Eremis, and interrupted his seduction of her. It soon turns out that this is at the instigation of Geraden, who had been in the grip of one of his feelings, this time that Terisa had been in some sort of danger. He is taken away by Master Quillon, and Saddith takes Terisa back to her rooms to meet with Princess Myste. On the way a confused Terisa asks the maid for advice, and Saddith tells her
Quote:
"My lady," replied Saddith, trying to speak lightly, "I would make certain that Master Eremis does not come to hate me." An open window somewhere let in a draft of cold into the corridor. Terisa shivered.
foreshadowing?

Princess Myste is waiting for Terisa in her rooms. The two eat a meal together, and have quite an interesting discussion. Myste has a genuine admiration for Terisa and the way she has handled her situation thus far. She also says that Geraden is trustworthy, and makes these interesting comments about her sister and herself:
Quote:
"I have a better opinion of many things than she does. She is a king's daughter, and she desires the importance of a high place in the affairs of Mordant. She does not forgive her father - or the society around her - or anything else which she imagines stands between her and her natural right to plot and manipulate and betray as much as any prince. She does not forgive Geraden for the mistaken judgement which once betrothed him to her." Then she shrugged. "I think better of being a woman. I think better of those who hold power in Orison....I think better of myself."


And Myste has this to say about Terisa:
Quote:
Then you must be very wise...You are able to see yourself exactly as you are. tou are able to see everything exactly as it is. I have no such vision...You yourself are already the wisest woman in Orison, for you have not been misled by those who believe i ntheir own wisdon. You know the difference between what is seen and what is unseen, and you do not attempt to judge the one by the other."


After the two talk for a while, they are called to Court. An ambassador from Alend has made his way to Orison through the depths of winter, in a very dangerous and difficult journey. After the Hall fills with nobles, King Joyse and Havelock come in. Havelock capers and dances and declares everything a waste of time, which the King agrees with. The Ambassador turns out to be the oldest son of the Alend King, Prince Kragen. The King and the Prince make some rather nasty cracks to each other and then the King proposes a game of hop-board between the Prince and Terisa. Terisa figures out a way to make the game come out in a tie, which saves the Prince's face. The King then dismisses the Prince with yet another insult. Elega gets up and yells
Quote:
"Father, I am ashamed!"
and flees after the Prince. The King then sadly says after his daughter
Quote:
"That saddens me...I have always been proud of you."

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2003 3:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This might be the right place to state my opinion that I never quite understood Terisa when I read the Mordant's Need books for the first time.

And I am uncertain, even now, that I do so. I know that she has a very low self-image and that this is probably why she does the things she does but what is really interesting is what would she have done if she did not have a low self-image and let people lead her around?

Some of my confusion probably comes from the fact that I read these books after having read the second chronicles and the first times I read these I always concentrated on Covenant. And in the second chronicles you can say a lot about Covenant (and you probably do Smile) but he does not have a low self image. He knows he can destroy the world, he knows he can oppose Lord Foul and there seems to absolutely nothing he will not do to save the Land.

Contrast this with Terisa who seems to gravitate towards doing nothing, and sometimes even seem to prefer doing nothing. It is all very confusing sometimes. And she is not like Linden Avery either, although both women has been emotionally abused in their youth they have gone in completely opposite directions. Where Terisa is passive, Linden is active etc. etc.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2003 3:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

well maybe .. but in the first chrons .. TC is as reluctant to be a hero as Terisa is .. and Terisa does come into herself toward the end of the 2nd book moreso ..

they are both anti-heroes .. TC feels as impotent and unsure of his role in the Land as Terisa does .. maybe not as severely as Terisa does but they are similar in this respect ..

and to be fair .. they both are whisked off to strange worlds .. by strange occurances .. in TC's case he is summoned by .. a number of summonings beginning with Drool via LF .. and in Terisa's case she is aquired by Geraden's act of imagery .. at least 'she' is given the choice of being a part of the whole translation experience .. or not ..

These are 2 similar but very different stories .. and drawing parallels between them may not benefit in an understanding of Terisa ..

It annoyed me that she was sooo reluctant and inactive .. but it also annoyed me when TC exhibited these same behaviours ..

Yes she doesnt believe in herself .. she seems to just be along for the ride .. see where it takes her .. Her self-doubt holds her back from realising her potential in the beginning .. but she has to overcome this by the end of the book or witness the end of Orison .. and all she had come to love .. like TC ..

she seems so much less willing than TC .. but although TC sat on the side lines for the better part of the first series .. he did have a history of confidence .. albeit robbed from him by leperosy ..

TC saw himself 'his image' post-leperosy .. clearly .. even though he may have preferred not to .. but Terisa couldnt see herself at all ..
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 26, 2003 4:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I might be barking up the completely wrong tree here, but isn't Terisa just acting exactly the way she has always acted, and the way that she has been purposely trained to act by her parents? Whenever she would express her opinion, or "get in the way" she would be locked in the closet...the abuse she received seemed to be a much more active sort than what Linden received. Linden also had a horrid childhood, but it seems to me that hers was more a form of emotional neglect on the part of emotional messed up parents rather than the active abuse suffered by Terisa. But its been a long time since I've completely read through either the second chronicles or MN, so I might be completely off base...
To me Terisa is acting in the only way she knows how to act. It takes traveling to Mordant and learning to care for others and seeing some positive role models for her to change her patterns of behavior...
And, yes, while I think I understand it a bit, I ALSO find it to be somewhat annoying...
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 26, 2003 5:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Right Duchess! In that way the beginning of Need, at least the 1st 1/3 of Mirror can b annoying (and a little frency (provincial) girly, 4 us guys...) 42natetly Artagel and Prince Kragen help get the testosterone flowing... Shocked Cool
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 26, 2003 10:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think I agree with you duchess, it seems to be the way Terisa always acts. But at the start of the story we do not know that and it annoys me.
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 26, 2003 11:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is very true, Ryzel. We don't know it at first, and it IS annoying...and I've always wondered what a person with more shall we say "normal" responses and behaviors would have acted in her place...Spoiler:
but in the end, she does get the job done...

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2003 6:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It could have been interesting to see what someone else would have done in her place, true.

Spoiler:

I wonder if the reason she got the job done was because of her way of doing things. Do we have any suggestion that the way she does things was the RIGHT thing to do?

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2016 12:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
King Joyse didn't stand or in any other way return the Prince's salutation. Gruffly, he muttered, "Kragen, is it? I know you." The tremors of age in his voice made him sound petulant.

The Prince's smile shifted a few degrees. "Have we met, my lord King?"

"Yes, we have, my lord Prince." King Joyse articulated the title sourly. "You should remember. It was seventeen years ago. You led several squadrons of Alend horse to protect one of your Imagers from me. When I beat you, I had to have you bound to make you accept defeat--yes, and gagged to make you keep your insults to yourself. You were an overeager puppy, Kragen. I hope that seventeen years have made you wiser."

Now Prince Kragen wasn't smiling. His men weren't smiling. One of them whispered something Terisa couldn't hear. Nevertheless Kragen's manner remained suave and sure. "My thanks for the reminder, my lord King. I doubt that I am much wiser, since I have always been too ready to forget my defeats. For that reason, I am not bitter. Howsoever, it is well that I have come as an ambassador instead of an opponent, is it not? Since I am an ambassador, you will not need to have me bound and gagged in order to save yourself from an overeager puppy."

At that, Castellan Lebbick made a noise between his teeth that could be heard across the hall. Though he sat back in his chair with his arms folded, he gave the impression that he was ready to spring at Prince Kragen's throat.

King Joyse scowled. "I have often said," he answered the Prince slowly, "that a puppy is more deadly than a dog. A dog learns from experience. A puppy has none, and so his behavior cannot be predicted."

The Alend ambassador's eyes had a yellowish cast, like a tinge of anger. Yet his manner remained unruffled. His stance indicated that he was incapable of quailing. "My lord King, do you keep hunting dogs? I do not know if you enjoy the sport. It is one of my passions. Among my people I am not considered a poor master of the hunt. I can assure you that it is never the puppy that brings down the stag."

The King's hands gripped the arms of his throne. "That," he snapped, "is because dogs hunt in packs."

"Oh, Father," Elega groaned softly.


King Joyse is going out of his way to make this an unfriendly encounter for the Prince. But as far as we know at this point, he may have good cause.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2016 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
More sternly, King Joyse went on, "We have little reason to love Alend. I ask you simply, Kragen: Why are you here?"

As if nothing had happened, the Prince replied, "I will answer you simply, my lord King. The Alend Monarch wishes to know what takes place in Mordant. He wishes to end the chaos of rumor and implication. And"--Kragen paused for an instant of drama--"he wishes to propose an alliance."

The reaction in the hall was as strong as he could have desired. Unable to restrain herself, Elega sprang to her feet--as did the Castellan, two of his officers, and Master Barsonage. Master Quillon gaped. Whispers of surprise spattered toward the ceiling. Clapping her hand to her mouth, Myste stared up at her father with excitement and hope.

Terisa had no reason to share Castellan Lebbick's hostility. As far as she was concerned, the Prince had just spoken the first sensible words she had heard in the hall of audiences.

"An alliance?" snapped Lebbick. "With Margonal? Sheep-dung!"

One of his officers demanded, "Does the Alend Monarch think we have lost our minds?"

But another cried, "But if we are allied against Cadwal? The High King musters his armies beyond the Vertigon. The Perdon should hear this!"

At the same time, Master Barsonage protested, "An alliance? An alliance against our doom?" He looked almost frantic. "My lord King, you must accept!" For an instant, Terisa thought he was going to shout, You must accept, so that the Congery will not need to call its champion!

More quietly, but with equal fervor, the lady Elega was saying, "Bravely said, Prince Kragen! Bravely done."

But King Joyse said nothing until the hubbub stilled itself. He didn't appear surprised. In fact, he hardly seemed to be interested. His face was tight, as if he were stifling a yawn.

At last the hall became quiet again. Castellan Lebbick and the others seated themselves reluctantly, as though pushed down against their will. Soon, every eye was fixed on King Joyse.

Muttering under his breath, he pulled himself straighter in his seat. His circlet had been nudged askew, and a few strands of hair hung down over his eyes. "An alliance, Kragen? After several dozen generations of war? Why would I agree to such a thing?"

"My lord King, I have not the least idea," the Prince replied equably. "I have no facts. But the rumors coming out of Mordant suggest that you are in need. They suggest that the need is growing dire. Therefore it occurred to the Alend Monarch to offer his assistance."

"What does the Alend Monarch think our need is?"

The Prince shrugged delicately. "I must repeat that he hears only rumors. But the import of these tales seems clear." He nodded past Lebbick toward the Masters. "It appears that some--perhaps many--of your Imagers have turned against you."

"Impossible!" Master Barsonage protested at once. "You are offensive, my lord Prince."

King Joyse ignored the mediator. "And what does the Alend Monarch think to gain from this alliance?"

"Your trust, my lord King."

That made sense to Terisa.

King Joyse had a different reaction, however. He sat forward, his incredulity plain on his face. "What? Trust? He does not wish to rule half of Cadwal? He does not desire Imagers of his own?"

"As I have said," Prince Kragen explained patiently, "the Alend Monarch has given himself to wisdom. He understands that things may happen between rulers who trust each other which are impossible otherwise. Of course he desires the resources of Imagery for his people. Of course he desires the wealth of Cadwal, so that he can purchase more of what Mordant has and Alend lacks. But he sees that these wishes will not be fulfilled without trust. And trust must begin somewhere.

"He offers you his assistance and asks nothing in return. If what he wants can be achieved, it will come of its own accord when his cooperation has taught you to know him better."

"I see." King Joyse leaned back again. "Doubtless that explains why Margonal has an army of tremendous size gathering beyond the borders of Fayle and Armigite. I mean, of course, that I have heard rumors of such an army."

"Then you have also heard," the Prince answered smoothly, "that High King Festten musters a massive assault against you. Doubtless"--he allowed himself a hint of sarcasm--"he means to take advantage of your weakness--I mean your need--to crush your kingship, enslave the Cares, and capture all Imagery for himself. I think you will understand, my lord King, that the Alend Monarch cannot permit Cadwal such a victory. Whether or not you accept his alliance, he must oppose the High King. In forging the Congery, you have created something which must not be surrendered."

"That is true," acknowledged the King. "That is true."

For a long moment, he stared at the ceiling, with his mouth open, stroking his beard as though he were deep in thought. His eyes closed, and Terisa thought suddenly, Oh, no, he's going to sleep! Abruptly, however, he looked back down at Prince Kragen and smiled.

His smile seemed to light his face like a touch of sunshine.

"My lord Prince," he said as if he were happy for the first time since the audience began, "do you play hop-board?"


Good thing Geraden isn't in the room, for he probably would have groaned aloud at this, for sure! Faint Just when it seems that the King is touched by reason, he has to bring up the checkers game. Razz
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