Some week soon I will find myself back in my normal rhythm of writing on Monday mornings. Between long weekends and delayed school openings things are not conducive to writing in normal slot! Even with the break in rhythm, however, the joy of creation manages to find a way into my crowded life, so let’s unpack “House Guest.”
One of my Google+ followers remarked after last week, “You really like your cliffhangers.” I suppose I do. Given the nature of this story being published serially, they are also necessary to create good breaking points. I promise, however, I did not leave Jeremy’s story by the wayside just to frustrated people who what to know what’s going on with him! I split the party up to move the tale along a bit, and also to give myself an opportunity to explore the “headspace” of some of the other characters. It was fascinating to walk through this passage with Ama’s eyes. Look for some other splits in coming passages. Michael, in Particular, needs some attention.
One of these days I’ll write from Talum’s vantage point. The way his mind works should make for some entertaining writing. I probably won’t happen in this book, but perhaps in the follow-up story – if it ever gets written.
As he said, Tollen left for The Ravine shortly after the group circled back in order to head toward Meadowrun. It was actually Tollen who advised Satal and Kaitlyn to send the Senator out to meet with Walter in Riverside. He was also responsible for making the Riverside guards aware of Walter’s likely arrival. He’s been working very hard to make certain Jeremy reached The Ravine, and is greatly relieved he actually made it.
I did get to put another bit of myself into the story through Tollen, and that always pleases me. “I never claimed to be nice,” is one of the things I tend to say to people. I’m really not a nice person. I do try to be good, but I don’t have the social competence or dexterity to be “nice.” Tollen is certainly not a nice person, but he’s also one of the most decidedly good people we’ve encountered thus far.
The noise cancellation which helps separate the buzz of the Bureaucratic level from the Hall of Healers is one of the wonders of The Valleys. Audible levels literally go from a roaring buzz to a faint whisper the moment the boundary of the circle is crossed. Sadly, it goes unappreciated. People find it so disconcerting they pretend not to notice the circle’s existence. They barely register the presence of the Hall!
The Seekers having rooms inside the Hall of Healing is not a new development, even thought neither Ama nor Talum had heard of it. Given the reputation of the Seekers among most people in the Inner Valleys it’s not something the Council publicizes, even to distant members of their own orders.
The reason for their presence stems from an ongoing conversation among the Healing Council. They have been growing aware of a growing stagnation in The Valleys for some time, and believe the Seekers’ desire to delve into the past may be the best path forward for their society. Tollen, as head of the Seekers, has had an office in the Hall for over two years by the time our characters arrive in the city.
Some of the orders aren’t particularly happy with the Seekers being permanently based in their own hall, but the Um and Im orders have managed to keep the council from evicting them. Merkot is well aware of what’s going on, but his reach that deep into The Ravine is limited. He’s also away of how badly a confrontation with he Healing Council would go for him and so has not pushed the issue.