I’m fascinated by Shelter and the scope of it’s accomplishment. For fans of fantasy, I’m obviously inspired by Tolkien’s depictions of Dwarf cities, though with a human twist. I wanted Shelter to be the type of wonder to which Jeremy felt drawn, which is from whence the idea of the rainbow sunset sprang. This is one of my favorite segments of the story thus far.
Let’s unpack it.
The vision of this restaurant came from a memory I have of going with my father for an afternoon of horse racing near Philadelphia. I’m not a gambler, so I’ll never go to a track again, but the restaurant from which we took in the races was precisely what I envision for Jeremy and Ama. Terraced, with tables nearly completely isolated from one another so as not to obstruct the view of the action. I was a fascinating place to spend the afternoon, and I’m pleased to bring it in to the world of The Valleys.
The name of the establishment, “The Prism” is a nod to the cable channel which used to broadcast the home games of Philly’s sports teams. This station, Prism, is part of my childhood. The reason you got cable was so you could get Prism. Now, of course, you can’t even watch away games on TV. Thanks Comcast.
Make note, the bread is crusty. If you are from Philadelphia you know what I mean by that. If you are not from Philadelphia, come and head to Sarcone’s Bakery in the Italian Market. You’re taste buds will thank you.
I hadn’t expected Ami to be from Shelter, but then William took an interest in her and I realized that it was her hometown. Again, I have no idea what role Ami plays in this story, but given that I find her popping up in interesting places she’ll probably have a larger role than I was expecting. Ever since she suddenly appeared coming down that hidden ladder I knew she wasn’t a throwaway character.
The Old Fox returns
William knew Walter was in Shelter, and that he was staying the night. Walter’s journey to The Ravine is a big deal, and would have been even if he hadn’t met Jeremy along the road. Echoes of his arrival are getting ahead of him, which are going to annoy him. This is especially true because he wants to get Jeremy to The Ravine as quietly as possible.
It’s going to be fun unpacking some more of Walter’s identity.