The non-linearity of this chapter consists in us having Ren re-learn a thing she originally learned in Chapter 18, which we’ve decided to pull out of there and save for here, so that she’ll have more opportunity to react to it. What we have here still isn’t fully developed, I suspect, but I do think it’s in the right place now. (And once again, I’m glad that writing isn’t performance art; we get to revise what we’ve done before you lot ever see it.)
I’ve commented in various places about how this book is kind of terra incognita in a way the previous ones weren’t. The core of what we’d developed in the game can be found in The Liar’s Knot; when drafting The Mask of Mirrors, we knew we were writing our way toward that target. But this book is the onward-rippling consequences of that core, which is in part terrain that the game hasn’t gotten to yet — or if it has, it’s been in the context of plots and characters which are nowhere in this series. Plus there are a couple of long-term conflicts there that the PC version of Ren hasn’t yet gotten to resolve.
All of which is a roundabout way of saying, this chapter contains two events I’m really looking forward to in the game, even as I partially scratch the itch by dealing with the book renditions of those situations. 😀 One is a much-needed revelation; the other is a much-needed ass kicking. It’s nice when people get what’s coming to them . . .
Word count: 168,000
Authorial sadism: Normally I think of this in terms of us being mean to our lead characters, but in this case I should acknowledge that we took what was originally supposed to be mainly a social downfall and made it, uh, extra dramatic.
Authorial amusement: “No wonder you got in the habit of lying.”
BLR quotient: The last stitches of love are bringing the fabric together.