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04 January 2016 @ 04:33 pm
Final Quest #3  
Summary under the cut!

Final Quest 3

We open on Strongbow going to visit Moonshade in the cult she has joined, eh, I mean the Palace. Strongbow is worried, as he and Moonshade never have been apart this much and that she's spending all her time in the Palace. Now, I'm all for couples spending a healthy amount of time apart, but when Moonshade says she's learning to communicate better with their dead daughter Crescent, Strongbow points out that this makes her neglect her living, breathing daughter Freetouch.

Moonshade's answer? I'll quote: "There was no kindness in that thought! No one thinks such things here - ever!"

Uhm. Yeah. No "Freetouch is fine and doesn't need me mothering her", no "Those are your thoughts, not our daughter's", just "Don't say mean things to me! Asking me to talk to our living child is mean". Being in the Palace is all kindness and happiness, sure! Having angry thoughts is against the rules! And apparently include no pesky responsibilities like talking to your children – how dare you ask her to communicate with your child! Let her hang out with the dead if she wants to!

Sorry, I don't think that is how the scene was meant to be read, but living in the Palace starts to sound more and more like giving up life and emotions other than "sated". Very cult-like, very creepy, to me.

Strongbow begs Moonshade's forgiveness for daring to send unkind thoughts, and says he misses her. She agrees to den with him, coming out of the Palace for a while. Tribe mates see them exit the Palace together, among them Freetouch and Dart, who seem very unconcerned with Strongbow and Moonshade's heartache. They even laugh at how silly it all is and how soon Moonshade probably will be back in the Palace – Freetouch thinks Moonshade should do as she pleases and Dart seems to find his father growling about it amusing.

Charming children.

Cutter and Leetah speak of worry for Ember. Nightfall tries to be the voice of reason and asks why they can't all just fly there and rescue her, but Cutter says they must honor their promise and only come if she sends for them.

She's inherited your stubbornness, Cutter. You really think your kid will make a rational decision to save herself, when said decision could endanger others? You do remember you went running around a battle field with your guts hanging out when you thought your people needed you?

Cut to Ember tied to a high-backed chair in Angrif Djun's current housing. Surgeons are trying to tend to the Djun. It's not going well.

He's alive, sure, but he most likely won't have his balls grow back. Unless he gets Mender, of course. Angrif notices that Ember is less than perky and guesses that it's because he's separated her from her kin and their wolves. Close, but no cigar, Mr. Djun. Ember also says torturing her has no point, since she'll just "go out" – the joys of astral projection, gentlepeople!

Back with the fleeing Teir & co, the human children are hungry. Teir makes frogs jump onto his dagger, to feed them.

Yup. That happened.

First we have Windkin murdering humans more or less for sport without Leetah and Skywise lifting so much as an eyebrow, and now Teir is making frogs hop onto daggers. What happened to "never the trusting ones", Teir? Is this the point at which we just can ignore all previous moral stances the elves have taken, ever?

Sorry, sidetracked. Angrif Djun makes creepy, rapey comments to Ember, but since she's tiny he's not really interested in her in that way. Then he chokes her a bit because she reminded him of his lost, well, balls. He realizes she has no idea what torture really is and decides to educate her.

Meanwhile, the Djun's second son Rathol is hot on the trail of Ember's tribe. The human children are slowing the tribe down and the soldiers in pursuit have realized the elves have human children with them. Not good times.

Ember sends to Teir and gives him the idea of finding mounts for the children. He calls for deer to ride with his Animal Mimicry magic, which introduces this slightly odd concept to us:

"The good of the group...To no animal's mind is that an alien concept."

This is new to me – pretty sure deer don't share a hive-mind. Not frogs either. Actually, I'm pretty sure they're all individuals who'll react very differently to different situations – some might sacrifice their lives for others of their kin, but I really doubt all would.

Sorry, side-tracked again. I'll just erase those narration boxes in my mind and replace them with the silent pictures of Teir using his magic to summon deer for the human children to ride. That's enough info. No need for pseudo-hive-mind speeches.

Also, the wolves eat one of the deer. *sigh*

Cut to the Palace, where Windkin flies in without as much as a hello and asks Moonshade if spirits answer questions. If you ask me, they seem pretty damn chatty in all panels I've seen them, so knock yourself out, Windkin.

Sunstream is distracted from this topic of conversation because he now feels more uneasy for Teir & co than for Ember. Not a good sign.

Teir is about to faint, seeing as his and Ember's sending range is stretched to its limit. He gets worse when Angrif Djun shows Ember a pistol, who freaks out, which sends Teir for a spin.

We end the issue with Ember staring in fear at the huge hole the pistol's bullet has left in the chair she's sitting in. Looks like things don't bode well for Ember – really should have tried to run when you had the chance, shouldn't you? Could have spared your whole tribe a lot of anguish and tension... Just saying.
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