deux ex machina

Tue Mar 14 22:20:49 PST 2006

Davdi Silverrock wrote:
> I am pretty sure that there is at least one point (and probably more
> than one) in the texts (and both V & P sets of texts)  where Zerika
> and Sethra are in the same room together.

As far as I know, only in Paarfi's texts, not the Vlad novels. The 
closest they come is in Teckla, when the Easterners are attacking the 
palace, and Sethra arrives to defend. That all happens off-stage, 
however, so we have no direct scenes with the two.

As a foundation for the argument, I contend that SKZB never writes 
something in the Vlad books without a reason. If you read them that way, 
you can see things, such as odd relationships between people (ie, "I was 
brought back to life by Sethra after Kiera found my body in a gutter" 
OWTTE, in Jhereg). Which means odd things standing out in the books are 
probably there for a reason. Which reason is what we're concerning 
ourselves with here.

All of these are minor. But so was the hint regarding Kiera and Sethra 
in _Jhereg_.

Many of my Vladiad books are still scattered due to a move, so, from 

In Phoenix, there's a mention of Dark Lady's cove, one end with a crown 
on it. (Vlad and Aibn-- A'bin-- Aeib'n-- hell, the drummer, are 
discussing where Morrolan's ship is moored, I think.)

In Orca, there's the mention (with details) that the empress has gone 
missing just as Kiera appears, and she's gone missing before.

There's a joke somewhere in the books that there are laws against undead 
holding the throne, likely in Taltos, said by Verra.

There's the mention of speech patterns in Orca, and Kiera 'waxes 
eloquent' on a topic, much as the Empress does in Phoenix when she and 
Vlad are walking down a hallway. (One line in particular, when Vlad 
interrupts each of them.)

In Phoenix, again, Zerika mentions wanting to see Vlad with her own eyes 
again, as she couldn't remember what he looked like (or something to 
that effect). Sethra has memory troubles as well, and may have said 
something like that as well, but I have memory troubles and can't recall.

Sethra mentions she knows the empress's mind well, _Orca_.

_Phoenix_, "I almost told the Empress that she should become a Teckla if 
she loved them so much, but I was afraid she'd take it the way I meant 
it." OWTTE. On the face of it "I home she drops dead and comes back as a 
Teckla." But, a bit of irony if the Empress is a shape-shifter.

There's a few other things, but they don't come to mind at the moment. 
It's been a couple of years since my last pass through the series.

Anyway, I'm throwing it out there as a holey theory (as in, a theory 
with big holes). As I mentioned in my very first message, Paarfi's 
so-called histories do damage to it quite directly, and falling back to 
him as an unreliable narrator is a bit too handy to explain the problem 

I'll schedule the books for another pass through here soon, and I'll 
scribble a few notes this time 'round.

Every truth has a context.