A Caress of Twilight – Chapter 36, 37, 38: Ladies and gentlemen may I present Taranis, the giant shining turd

A Caress of Twilight – Chapter 36
Chapter 36 begins after Merry and Galen go back into the apartment after performing the fertility ritual. Maeve had stripped away all of her human-glamour and was awaiting them in Merry’s bedroom in her true sidhe form. Gordon was also waiting and apparently got even sicker while they were away? Merry goes to Gordon, and Galen to Maeve, and then they all kiss, so that Merry and Galen can transfer over the power from the ritual. After the kissing ends, Maeve moves in to kiss her husband, and Merry and Galen exit the room to leave them to do their thang.
 
You know, fuck in Merry’s bed, because that’s not gross or anything. Bet they didn’t even change their sheets from earlier that day. Also, Gordon is almost too sick and weak to walk, and somehow Maeve is going to have crazy sidhe sex with him? Meh.
 
Doyle spoke into the sudden silence of us all. “You have succeeded, Meredith.”
“You don’t know that for certain.”
He looked at me, just looked at me as if what I’d said had been ridiculous.
“Doyle is right,” Frost said. “Such power will not fail.”
“If I have such fertility power, then why aren’t I pregnant yet?”
There was a second silence, not awestruck this time, but awkward. “I do not know,” Doyle said at last.
“We will have to try harder, that’s all,” Rhys said.
Galen nodded solemnly. “More sex, we must have more sex.”
 
I don’t think solemnly was the adverb you wanted here, LKH.
 
Anyway the chapter ends with all the men agreeing that yes, they definitely must have more sex, and Merry complaining that she won’t be able to walk anywhere if they do. Frost tells her he will carry her, then, and Merry hopes he understood what she said was meant to be a joke.
 
This chapter was all of 4 pages on my Nook. Each page of my Nook represents about half a physical book page, meaning this chapter was 2 pages total. WHY THE FUCK COULDN’T YOU HAVE COMBINED IT WITH ANOTHER CHAPTER? I hate, hate, hate how extremely varying her chapter lengths are. It’s just so jarring and stupid. Learn to editor, LKH, please, for the sake of all your fans.

A Caress of Twilight – Chapter 37
Chapter 37 begins after lunch the next day when Taranis calls upon them all. I guess Maeve was already pregnant, like with a super magical fast-growing Twilight baby or something. Merry hopes that Taranis doesn’t somehow know about Maeve’s pregnancy, and she answers the call with Doyle and Frost at her side. Well, no, it takes LKH like 12 paragraphs to describe how everyone is dressed for the call, which is just one of my pet peeves in fiction. No one cares about everything down to the socks your character is wearing. A quick description of the clothes is all that’s really required, unless you’re describing something as important as, say, Cinderella’s dress upon her entrance to the ball. No one cares what some stupid Mary-Sue stand-in character and her two whiny bodyguard-lovers is wearing to answer a fucking mirror phone call.
 
Anyway, Taranis is sitting upon his throne when they answer. LKH spends several paragraphs to describe Taranis – which is totally okay in this context. It’s the first time he’s been physically “on-screen” as a character, and it’s been described that he’s super particular about looks. I don’t mind the lengthy description of what he looks like and is wearing here, it feels natural and flows well. What I don’t care about is your stupid JC Penny bargain dress, Merry, or what color shirt Frost is going to cry in today.
 
Taranis, King of Light and Illusion, sat on a golden throne. He was clothed in light. His undertunic was the movement of sunlight through leaves, soft dappled light, with pinpoints of bright yellow sunlight, like tiny starbursts appearing through the light and shadow. The overtunic was the bright, almost blinding yellow of full summer sunlight on bright leaves. It was both green and gold, and neither. It was light, not cloth, and the color changed and moved as he moved. Even the rise and fall of his breathing made it dance and flow.
 
First off, remember how I went over LKH’s word-repetition a chapter or so ago? Here it is again with the word “light”. I know Taranis is the King of Light and all, but seriously, can’t you think of a better word to use in place of light? Can’t you think of a better analogy than comparing his clothing to leaves, like you did twice here?
 
His hair fell in waves of golden light around a face that was so bright with light that only his eyes shone out of the dazzlement.
 
“Dazzlement”? Also, again, “light” twice in one sentence.
 
Those eyes were three circles of brilliant, livid blue, like three circles of three different oceans, each drowning in sunlight, each a different shade of blue; but like the water they were borrowed from, they changed and shifted as if unseen currents boiled within.
 
Can we talk about LKH’s semi-colon use here? I know it’s correct grammar for her to use one in this instance, because she’s used a few commas prior to the semi-colon placement, but still, LKH is a NOTORIOUS ABUSER OF COMMAS so I feel like she shouldn’t be able to get away with this one grammar rule. Plus I hate it. I hate seeing a semi-colon in front of a connector word. It just feels wrong.
 
Controversial Opinion: I feel that this semi-colon grammar rule should be optional, must like the fucking useless Oxford comma. Fuck that punctuation mark. Fuck it forever.
 
So much of him moved, and not in complementary ways. It was like looking at different kinds of light on different days in different parts of the world but having them be forced together. Taranis was a collage of illumination that flashed and flowed and fluttered, and never in the same direction. I had to close my eyes. It was dizzying. I felt I’d grow sick if I looked at it long enough. I wondered if Doyle or Frost were feeling a little motion sick, or if it was just me.
 
Like in this paragraph – LKH could easily have PROPERLY USED A SEMI-COLON for “I had to close my eyes; it was dizzying.” That would look SO MUCH NICER and flow SO MUCH BETTER.
 
Also the commas. OH THE COMMAS. I write all these reviews in Word first before copying them over to this blog, and I know Word isn’t the best judge of grammar and such, but HOLY SHIT these chapters are SO FULL of red and green squiggly lines it’s laughable. And entirely frustrating. I have to keep ‘correcting’ myself when I go to ‘correct’ LKH’s writing, so that I am typing the italicized portions exactly as written.
 
But that wasn’t something I could ask aloud in front of the king. Aloud I said, “King Taranis, my part-mortal eyes cannot behold your splendor without feeling quite overwhelmed. I would beg you lessen your glory so that I might look upon you without growing faint.”
His voice came in a rush of music, as if he was singing some wondrous song, but he was only speaking. In my head, I knew it wasn’t the most beautiful sound I’d ever heard, but my ears heard something beyond beguiling. “Whatever you need to make this conversation pleasant will be given to you. Behold, I am more easy upon mortal eyes.”
I opened my eyes cautiously. He was still as bright, but the light didn’t move and flow so rapidly. It was as if he’d slowed down the play of light, and his face was not quite as dazzling. I could see more of the outline of his jaw, but there was still no hint of the beard that I knew he wore, His golden waves were more solid, less radiant. I knew what color his hair was, and this wasn’t it. But at least it didn’t make my head spin to look at him anymore.
Well, except for the eyes. He’d kept his eyes that swimming blue play of light and water. I smiled, and asked, “Where are those beautiful green eyes that I remember from childhood? I had looked forward to seeing them again. Or has my memory deceived me and it is some other sidhe’s eyes that I thought were yours? These eyes were the green of emeralds, the green of summer leaves, the green of deep, still water in a shaded pool.”
The men had given me tips on dealing with Taranis, from centuries of doing it themselves and seeing the queen do it. Tip number one had been: You never went wrong flattering Taranis; if it was sweet to the ears, he tended to believe it. Especially if a woman said it.
 
So Taranis drops the glamour on his eyes and suddenly Merry can see the green of his true-eyes. She tells him that his eyes are just as beautiful as she remembers, and Taranis finally drops more of the glamour so that Merry can see him without all that excess shining and light around him. Taranis greets Merry, using her royal title, and invites her to his special pre-Yule feast.
 
I took a deep breath, let it out, smiled. “I am most honored at the invitation, King Taranis. A feast in my honor at the Seelie Court is a most unexpected surprise.”
“A pleasant one, I hope,” and he laughed, and the laugh was again that ringing joyous sound. I had to smile when I heard it. The sound even pulled a laugh from my own lips.
“Oh, most pleasant, Your Highness.” I meant it when I said it. Of course it was pleasant to be invited by this glowing man with the extraordinary eyes to a feast in my honor among the beautiful, shining court. Nothing could be better than that.
I closed my eyes, and took in a deep breath, then held it for a few heartbeats, while Taranis kept talking in a progressively more beautiful voice. I concentrated on my breathing, not his voice. I felt my breath, the ebb and flow of my body. I concentrated on just drawing air in and letting it out, on controlling it, feeling my body pull it inside me, then holding it until it was almost painful not to exhale, finally letting the air trickle slowly out.
 
Doyle realizes that Merry is acting strangely around Taranis, and he tells the king that Merry seems to be having difficulty facing Taranis’s power.
 
Doyle had been the one who warned me that Taranis was so good at personal glamour that he used it routinely against other sidhe. And no one told him it was illegal, because he was the king and most feared him. Feared him too much to point out that he was cheating.
 
What the fuck is this shit? So the sidhe can’t lie, except when they can, and they can’t thank another sidhe, except when they can, and various things are strictly illegal and taboo, except when they aren’t?
 
I wanted so badly to simply ask why it was so important that I come to his little soiree But Taranis knew exactly who had raised me, and no one ever accused my father of being less than polite. Direct sometimes, but always polite. I couldn’t pretend to be an ignorant human, as I had with Maeve Reed. He’d know better. The problem was, without direct questions, I wasn’t sure how to learn what I needed to know.
But it didn’t matter. The King was far too busy trying to bewitch me to worry about anything else.
 
So Merry begins piling the compliments on Taranis. She compliments his hair, how absolutely beautiful she remembers it. But then she quickly changes her tone, telling Taranis that she may be misremembering, as all of her memories of Taranis were from when he wasn’t using his glamour on her. Apparently this is her trying to manipulate him?
 
I wouldn’t have fallen for it; none of my guards would have believed it; Andais would have slapped me for such obvious manipulation. But none of us had known the social coddling that Taranis had grown accustomed to. He’d had centuries of people speaking to him just like that, or even sweeter. If all you ever hear is how wondrous you are, how lovely, how perfect, is it really anyone’s fault that you begin to believe it? If you believe it, then it no longer seems silly or manipulative. It seems like the truth. The true secret was that I did think that his honest form was more attractive than the light show. I was being honest, and flattering. It could be a powerful combination.
 
Anyway, it works, and Taranis finally drops the glamour almost completely, so that Merry can see him as she remembers him.
 
“Does this suit you better, Meredith?” His voice was rich enough to touch, as if I could have grabbed handfuls of it and clutched it to my body. I couldn’t quite figure out what it would feel like in my arms, but something thick, sweet, maybe. Like covering yourself in cotton candy, all air and spun sugar, something to melt and grow sticky.
I jerked back to myself when Doyle touched my shoulder. Taranis had been using more than simple glamour. Glamour changes the appearance of something, but you still have the choice of accepting it or not. Glamour might make a dry leaf appear to be a sweet bit of cake, and you are more likely to eat the cake illusion than the dry leaf of fact; but you must still choose to eat it. The glamour changes only the experience. It doesn’t make your choice to accept it.
What Taranis had just done would try to make my choice for me.
 
Buh? Everything we had known about glamour up to this point was that it changed the person using it, so that they’d appear different, or it changed the experience to mask pain or uncomfortable things. Not that it can force people to act differently. Also – it’s never been about choice, otherwise that whole bargaining bit with Sage from earlier was for nothing. If Merry could simply have chosen not to experience Sage’s glamour, couldn’t she have put a stop to it without having to ask him to go gentle? OR BETTER YET couldn’t she choose not to let Taranis’s glamour affect her so? This makes no sense now.
 
Anyway, Taranis had apparently tried to force Merry to agree to attend the feast, but Doyle jerked Merry out of the glamour before she had a chance to respond. Now that Merry has a better grip on reality, she declines Taranis’s invitation, telling him that she would be more than happy to attend in a month or so, once things calm down for her with preparing for the Unseelie Yule celebration.
 
Taranis pushes his glamour on her again, and Merry begins to frantically try to think of a way to force him to stop. She thinks over what sort of powers she has available. She knows her own personal glamour is no match to Taranis’s, so that’s out. Her Hand of Flesh won’t work over the mirror, so that’s also out. She thinks she’s out of options, when Doyle places his hand on her shoulder again. She moves her hand so it is over Doyle’s and she feels Taranis’s power begin to recede. The physical presence of a real Doyle is helping Merry overcome the psychic presence of Taranis’s glamour.
 
Taranis pushes even harder, asking Merry yet again to attend the feast, and Merry is able to yet again decline, offering to attend a feast after the Yule celebrations die down. Doyle feels the glamour, so he sits down behind Merry so that she can lean back against him. More touching = stronger resistance to the glamour. Merry reaches out to Frost, and he moves to Merry’s side, taking her hand to add his physicalness to the resistance. Taranis begins being even more dramatic about forcing Merry to accept the invitation, forcing his power through his words now. “Come to me, Meredith. Come to me in three days, and I will show you a feast the likes of which you have never seen,” he says to them, each word slapping Merry in the face with more forceful power.
 
See, there I go, starting to use the same word over and over in a paragraph. LKH quit forcing me to do things I hate!
 
Ahhhhhhh!
 
The door to the bedroom opens and Galen enters. He was responding to a call Doyle had placed out to the men in the apartment. Merry tells him to send in Kitto, and he does so. Kitto enters the room, nearly naked, and he sits at the floor leaning up against Merry’s legs. With Kitto touching her, Merry’s mind begins to clear even more, and she realizes now why Andais always spoke with Taranis while draped with her men – it helped her to keep her mind unclouded from Taranis’s glamour as well.
 
“I thank you for the honor you do me, Taranis, but I cannot in good conscience agree to a feast before Yule. I would be most honored to attend once the busy season of Yule is past.” My voice came out very clear, very steady, almost clipped.
Doyle finally figured out that I was after skin, because he kept his hands busy on my neck, caressing the parts of my shoulders and arms that showed. Normally, the feel of his hands running over my skin would have been seductive; now it was just something to keep me anchored.
The king lashed at me with his power, fashioning it into a whip that hurt even as it felt good. It tore a gasp from my throat, and I would have flung myself at the mirror, even cried yes, if I could have spoken, if I could have moved. In that one desperate moment, three things happened: Doyle laid a gentle kiss on my neck, Kitto licked the back of my knee, and Frost sat down on the bed to raise my hand to his mouth.
 
This draws Merry out of the power of Taranis’s glamour, and she is finally able to tell him to fuck off.
 
“I have tried to be polite, Taranis, but you have been as blunt with your magic as I am about to be with my words. Why is it so important that you seem me at all, let alone before Yule?”
“You are my kinswoman. I wish to renew our acquaintance. Yule is a time of coming together.”
“You have barely acknowledged my existence most of my life. Why do you care to renew our relationship now?”
His power seemed to fill the room, as if I were trying to breathe something more solid than air. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t see. The world was narrowing down to light; light was everywhere.
A sharp pain brought me back so abruptly that I screamed. Kitto had bitten my leg like a dog trying to get my attention, but it had worked. I reached down and stroked his face “This interview is over, Taranis. You are being unaccountably rude. No sidhe does this to another sidhe, only to the lesser fey.”
Frost rose to his feet to blank the mirror, but Taranis said,” I have heard many rumors about you, Meredith. I wish to see for myself what you have become.”
“What do you see, Taranis?” I asked.
“I see a woman where once there was a girl. I see a sidhe where once there was a lesser fey. I see many things, but some things will go unanswered until I see you in person. Come to me, Meredith, come and let us know one another.”
 
Ahh, so Taranis wants to fuck her as well.
 
Merry tells Taranis that she can barely function speaking to him through a mirror, so that she’d be even worse speaking to him in person. Taranis then promises that he will not use his power to vex her if she comes to visit him before Yule. Merry asks why he’s so insistent on meeting before Yule. He asks why she’s so insistent on meeting after Yule. She tells him that she’s insisting on meeting after Yule because he’s so insistent on meeting before Yule. Mature!
 
“You have frightened me, Taranis. It is as simple as that. I will not put myself in your grasp, not until you take some very serious oaths … that you will behave yourself around me and mine.”
“If you will come before Yule, I will promise whatever you like.”
“I will not come before Yule, and you will still promise whatever I like. Or I will not come at all.”
He began to shine, his red hair glinting like hard blood. “You would defy me?”
“I cannot defy you because you have no power over me.”
“I am Ard-Ri, the high king.”
 
“Ard-Ri” is a gaelic term for the high king of Ireland, I guess, but I had to go look that up, not being familiar with gaelic or any gaelic myths (despite having taken archaeology courses on ancient Ireland, it’s still not an area I’m very familiar with). If LKH is going to casually throw around gaelic terms and such like this, she should be using it much more, so that it’s not so jarring and out of place when she does. Had I not looked this up, I’d never know if it was an actual real thing, or if she was making it up. Having looked up stuff she’s thrown about in these books before, I know LKH actually has done some research into this stuff – she’s just really piss poor at letting us, her audience, know what’s what.
Because she doesn’t care about her audience. She writes for herself.
 
Anyway, Merry tells Taranis that he is not HER high king, because she is of the Unseelie Court, and Taranis thus has no direct power over her. Taranis argues some more, Merry argues some more, it’s all terribly uninteresting and circular. Arguments between characters never seem to go anywhere in LKH’s stories. They just circle around and around arguing the same exact point constantly until the main character gives up/walks away/blanks the mirror. It’s so cheap.
 
                “You are not my king, Taranis. Andais is my queen, and I have no king.”
“You seek a king, Meredith, or so rumor says.”
“I seek a father for my children, and he will be king of the Unseelie Court.”
“I have told Andais long that what is ill with her is lack of a king, a true king.”
“And are you such a king, Taranis?”
“Yes,” he said, and I think he believed it.
 
So there it is. Taranis wants to be king of both courts. He’s told Andais of such, and now he’s telling Merry. Merry tells him she seeks a different sort of king than the king Taranis would be/is. She seeks a king that will honor her rule as high queen. Taranis is insulted by this, and Merry tells him that it is he that has insulted her, by throwing his power into her face. She tells him she’s done with the conversation, and Frost finally blanks the mirror.
 
We remained in silence for a second or so, then Doyle said, “He’s always thought himself quite the ladies’ man.”
“Do you mean that was some sort of seduction?”
I felt Doyle shrug, then his arms encircled me, hugging me to him. “For Taranis, anyone who isn’t impressed with him is a thorn in his side He must scratch at anyone who does not worship him He must pluck at it, like a small piece of grit in the eye, always there, always hurting.”
 
Merry then asks why Andais and Taranis always seem to be either trying to seduce or kill each other. She thinks there must be a third choice, to which Doyle responds that the third choice would be peace, and neither wants that. Because obviously nothing in this world can ever be peaceful, it always needs to be as dramatic as possible. Always. Character drama is the only fucking thing this book can rely on to drive the plot, there’s no climax of any sort. It’s just bickering and whining for 40 odd chapters.
 
“Why is he so pressing about Yule?” I asked.
“Once there were sacrifices at Yule,” Kitto said softly. “To ensure the light would return, they slew the Holly King to make way for the rebirth of the Oak King, the rebirth of the light.”
 
Oh, so NOW Kitto speaks up. Kitto, who knew PRECICELY WHY Yule was so important to Taranis the ENTIRE FUCKING TIME. Maybe he was too busy sleeping in his little dog bed to bother saving us several chapters with this knowledge. You asshole, Kitto.
 
So anyway, they all decide it’s best for Merry to not go anywhere near Taranis and the Seelie Court for a long time, and even though it was a unanimous decision, the chapter ends with Merry thinking that their decision was not a comforting one.
 

 

UGH.

A Caress of Twilight – Chapter 38

Chapter 38 begins as Merry, Frost, Doyle and Kitto are exiting the bathroom after the mirror call. They find Detective Lucy Tate sitting in the living room. Tate tells them it’s about time, and then notices that they are all dressed up too nice for the afternoon, and she tosses in a snide comment about how they’re a little too dressed up for an “afternoon delight”. I hate how the female characters in these stories treat one another. Tate is supposed to be one of Merry’s actual friends, and yet here she is, out of the blue, being a bitch about Merry having many lovers. LIKE EVERY OTHER FEMALE CHARACTER IN THIS SERIES ACTS. It’s just awful. I wonder if LKH has any close female friends, or if this is how she acts around all of them.
 
OH WAIT, NEVERMIND, apparently Rhys and Co had told Tate that Merry was in the middle of having sex with Doyle and Frost, because that was all that would keep her from storming into the bedroom to interrupt the call. A-what? Excuse me? How fucked up is it that A FUCKING DETECTIVE will sit and wait while Merry gets her bagel toasted by her two lovers but would TOTALLY INTERRUPT royal sidhe business? Priorities? What are those?
 
“Are you telling me that I’ve been out here for nearly an hour and they’ve been on a business call?” Her voice was dangerously low, each word very calm, very clear.
Galen got up and walked the dripping cup into the kitchen, one hand held underneath it to keep from leaving a trail of tea behind.
“Business call to the faerie courts,” I said. “Trust me when I saw that I’d rather you’d have walked in on a full-blown menage a trois than the call I just finished.”
She seemed to see me clearly for the first time. “You look shaken.”
I shrugged. “My family … gotta love ‘em.”
She looked at me for a long time, almost a minute, as if she was making up her mind about something. Finally, she shook her head. “Rhys is right. Only the threat of seeing you in flagrante delicto would have kept me out here this long. But family business isn’t police business, so screw it.”
 
Yeah, that just… it’s so dumb. Merry fucking tells Tate that the call was not good, and Tate is just like “nope, sex is more important than police work!” and it’s just so dumb. I hate this book.
 
Lucy finally tells them all that there has been another mass killing the night before. It was exactly same as the previous scene, just at a different location. She asks them if they’ve been following the news about the killings, and Doyle says they have, that the news reported that the first killings were due to a gas leak. Tate tells them that there was another killing prior to the rave scene that wasn’t reported on.
 
“The very first scene probably wouldn’t even have come up on anybody’s radar if it hadn’t been in a ritzy area of town. Just six adults that time, a small dinner party gone very bad. It’d still be floating around on someone’s weird shit pile as unsolved. But the vics were high profile, so when the club got hit, it rang bells downtown, and suddenly we had a task force. We needed one, but we never would have gotten it this quickly if one of the first vics hadn’t been friends with several mayors and a chief of police or two.” She sounded bitter and tired.
“The first murders were at a private residence?” I asked.
Lucy nodded, hands just clasped now, not wringing tight. She was tired and depressed, but calmer. “Yes, and it was the first related scene, as far as we’ve been able to find. I keep dreaming that there’s some crack house or sweat shop that was really the first hit, and we’re going to find dozens of dead bodies rotting in the December heat. The only thing worse than one of these scenes fresh would be a really old one.” She shook her head, running her hands through her hair, then she shook her head again, fluffing out the hair she’d just smoothed. “Anyway, the first one was a private residence, yeah. We found the couple that lived there, two guests, two servants.”
“How far was that house from the club that we saw?” I asked.
“Holmby Hills is about an hour away.”
 
OH SHIT, NOT HOLMBY HILLS, WHERE NEWLY PREGNANT EXILED SIDHE GODDESS MAEVE REED RESIDES. NOT THAT, ANYTHING BUT THAT.
 
Doyle asks Tate to repeat where the murders happened, and she does. They all go silent and look at one another, not offering any explanation to Tate. Well, Tate is not as dumb as I thought she was, and she calls them out on this shit, telling them that they won’t just go silent on her.
 
“No,” Lucy said. “No, you are not all going to just sit there and look innocent. When I said Holmby Hills you all looked like I’d stepped in something, something nasty. You can’t give me innocent faces now and not say what’s going on.”
“We can do anything we wish, Detective,” Doyle said.
She looked at me. “Are you going to stonewall me on this? I risked my career to come down here and talk to you all.”
“We are a little curious about that,” Doyle said. “Why would it be worth your career to come and speak with us? You have Teresa’s information, and Jeremy’s assurance it was a spell. What more can we tell you?”
She glared at him. “I’m not stupid, Doyle. There are fey everywhere I look on this case. Peterson just doesn’t want to see it. The first incident is in Holmby Hills almost right next door to Maeve Reed’s house. She’s a sidhe royal. Exiled, or not, she’s still fey. We put out calls to all the local hospitals, looking for anyone exhibiting symptoms similar to our victims. We got one bite on a live person. No new dead have come in.”
 
Oh boy, a survivor! Tate asks them if they’d be more willing to assist her if they knew the survivor was a fey. Would they help her out if she let them interview the survivor?
 
“No, this has something to do with your world, doesn’t it?”
I fought not to look at anyone around me.
“Would you talk to me, tell me the whole truth, if I let you interview the injured fey? Lieutenant Peterson has declared the fey noninvolved. So, technically, even if he finds out, he can’t fire me. Or even discipline me for it. In fact, the injured fey is my cover story. Since the fey won’t speak to the fey authorities, I’m looking for a few fey faces to try to talk to him, help him adjust to the big city.”
“You think he’s from out of town?” I asked.
“Oh, yeah, he’s got 
never been to the big city written all over him. He screamed when his heart rate monitor beeped at him the first time.” She shook her thick hair all around her face. “He’s from somewhere where they’ve never seen modern equipment. The nurses say they had to take the television out of his room because he had some sort of seizure after he saw it work.”
She looked at all of us in turn, and finally came back to me, Doyle, and Frost. “Talk to me, Merry, please. Talk to me. I won’t tell the lieutenant. I can’t. Please help me stop this, whatever it is.”
 
Merry finally agrees to talk to Tate about it, and she has Rhys tell Tate all about the old gods ghost spell, and that no one in the Unseelie Court was responsible for it. Tate asks how they can be sure of this, and they almost joke about how thorough Andais is in her questioning. Tate asks them if they can also be that thorough in their questioning of the fey survivor.
 
I raised my eyebrows at that. “Are you asking us to do what I think you’re asking us to do?”
“I’m asking you to stop this from happening again. The fey in the hospital won’t talk to the police; he won’t talk to the social worker that the Bureau of Human and Fey Affairs sent over. The fey went wild when I suggested we could contact the ambassador personally if he wasn’t comfortable with a human social worker. Seeing how scared he was to talk to the ambassador made me think he might be even more scared of you guys.”
“Why?” I asked.
“The ambassador isn’t sidhe.”
“What do you expect us to do to this fey?” Doyle asked.
“I expect you to do whatever it takes to get him to talk. We’ve got over five hundred dead, Doyle, almost six hundred. Besides, from what Rhys says, if these things aren’t stopped, if we just keep letting them feed, they’ll regenerate or something. I don’t want a pack of newly born ancient deities with a taste for killing running around loose in my town. It’s got to be stopped now, before it’s too late.”   
      
“Newly born ancient deities”. That’s my new favorite thing. It’s my new band name.
 
Anyway the chapter ends with Merry and Co deciding to accompany Tate to the hospital to speak to the fey survivor, but not until they call Maeve to warn her that ancient deity ghosts had been resurrected to kill her. Because obviously that’s what they discerned from the conversation with Tate – that just because an attack happens near Maeve’s house, it’s definitely sent after her. I mean, yeah, it’s definitely likely that’s what’s happening, but they don’t know FOR SURE yet, so for them to call Maeve and tell her what’s happening, it’s kind of soon and sudden. Seems more like a case of the ALLKNOWING SIDHE using the author’s knowledge to advance plot, not them figuring it out for themselves.
 
It’d make more sense for them to call and warn Maeve of danger, so that Maeve can get with the protection spells right away, than for them to instantly know what the danger is, and that it was absolutely for certain sent after Maeve. They probably should learn that it was absolutely sent after Maeve AFTER talking with this fey survivor, not before.
 
But what do I know, I’m not a NYT best selling author, what do I know about writing a good story? I’m just some hack that’s needlessly picking on LKH’s works. I’m totally just jealous. 

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