A Caress of Twilight – Chapter 42 & 43: A fight scene that’s not just mindless bickering? Sign me up!

A Caress of Twilight – Chapter 42
Chapter 42 begins with them scaling the wall to get inside the mansion compound. So they get inside and are stopped when walking down a narrow alley between the side of the house and some very large, full bushes. Galen and Tate make Merry stand in the bushes for protection, because even though she won the argument to come along on the Maeve-rescue mission, Galen wasn’t going to let Merry actually DO anything.
 
Because she’s not a ruler or anything, right?
 
So while they’re waiting in the alley, the Nameless suddenly becomes visible. Which means that one of the three guards, Doyle, Frost or Rhys, was able to sufficiently wound it enough to break through the glamour. The mere sight of the Nameless forces some of the police officers who spotted it to go mad.
 
I couldn’t see anything, but two of the policemen opened their mouths wide and started to scream. The other policemen paled, but tried to calm the other two down, until one of the screamers dropped to his knees and tried to claw out his own eyes. One of the calm ones fought to hold the screamer’s hands away from his body. Another older officer slapped the other screamer over and over, cursing under his own breath with each blow. “Son of a bitch,” slap, “son of a bitch,” slap … until the screaming officer sat down on the grass and hid his face, whimpering.
 
With the police out of the way, Galen steps to the side and Merry can finally see the Nameless.
 
How do you describe the indescribable? There were tentacles, and eyes, and arms, and mouths, and teeth, and too many of all of it. But every time I thought I understood its shape, that shape changed. I’d blink my eyes, and it wouldn’t be the way I remembered it. Maybe I couldn’t see what the Nameless looked like. Maybe my mind just couldn’t hold it all, and this was the best my poor mind could come up with. All I could think was if that shambling mountain of horror was the protective version that my mind would allow me to see, I did not want to see anything worse.
 
The policemen began shooting at the thing. As they start shooting, Tate and Co realize that the bullets are flying all over the place, and one of the now-mad policemen near them gets shot to death. Galen throws himself on top of Merry for protection, and Tate tries to call off the guns. Finally, it stops, and they all get a view of the Nameless. It’s bleeding now, but not really injured at all. Tate discovers that the National Guard is en route with helicopters and anti-tank weapons on board, so she focuses her attention on finding Maeve.
 
Which of course means at that exact moment Maeve and Gordon Reed come running out of the house with Julian following close behind them. Maeve and Co catch up to where Merry and them are waiting, and she immediately asks Merry if Taranis is behind the attacks, if Taranis knows anything about the magical one day conceived baby. Merry tells her no, he’s not aware of the pregnancy, but he sent the Nameless on her because he discovered that Merry saw her.
 
Wait, what? When was this even discussed. All that was said about the Nameless was that it was sent to kill Maeve. Nothing about why. I mean, yeah, you can assume that’s why it was sent, but still. Your character should not know this stuff without the audience knowing!
 
Maeve tells them that everyone else that was with Julian, save for Max, is dead. The policemen start helping her over the wall. As Julian is climbing over the wall to safety, Lucy calls their attention back to the Nameless. Rhys was currently entangled with it, and he drives the edge of his battle axe into one of the Nameless’s giant eyes.
 
Galen then chooses this moment to be a hero and as the chapter ends he runs towards the Nameless to join the battle. 

A Caress of Twilight – Chapter 43

Chapter 43 begins with Merry charging into the action after Galen. Apparently Merry is wearing sandals, because she comments that they weren’t “meant for running” so she had to toss them to the side while she ran towards the Nameless. Why couldn’t you have changed your shoes when you stopped back at your apartment for extra weapons, Merry?
 
They round the corner and see the Nameless in action. It has Rhys wrapped in its tentacles, and Rhys is no longer moving. His arms were hanging loose at his sides, and his weapons lay on the ground. Frost was still battling the thing, but one of his arms hung slack at his side and was useless. Merry sees him thrust his sword into one of the Nameless’s tentacles, and the Nameless smacks him aside, throwing him across the yard. Merry tries to run to him, but Galen stops her.
 
She then sees Doyle laying next to the pool in his own blood. He tries to lift himself up, and the Nameless knocks him into the pool with a swat of its tentacles. Merry then wants to run to Doyle to help him, but Galen forces her to swear an oath that she won’t go within the Nameless’s reach. She does so, reluctantly, and Galen asks Nicca to stay with her, then runs off towards the thing. Detective Tate and other policemen start shooting at the thing. The Nameless reaches out and grabs one of the officers. It then rips the office in half, sending blood and guts and gore all over the yard. Kitto throws himself on top of Merry to shield her from the gore, because Kitto isn’t smaller than Merry or anything.
 
I don’t understand why the guards always have to throw themselves on top of Merry whenever there’s any danger. Why can’t they, like, throw a shield over her, so that she can still see what’s going on or something. No, they just always throw themselves on top of her, and then they lay on her so she has to peer through their long, luxurious hair to see what’s going on. It happens in every single book and it’s just so dumb. And making Kitto do it to her, when he’s smaller than her in both size and stature? Ugh.
 
So Merry finally raises her head from the ground, she sees Nicca and Galen both fighting the thing with a sword and dagger each. The Nameless apparently gets sick of the physical fighting, and it begins to attack Nicca and Galen with magic. It shoots a white mist directly into Nicca’s face, and it drops him. The Nameless then turns its attention on Galen, and Merry knows she needs to do something to help him.
 
Kitto helps Merry up from the ground, and she starts walking towards the Nameless, but then she slips in a puddle of blood and lands on her ass. She pulls her hands up and realizes that they’re now covered in blood. Her left palm begins to itch and burn, and she realizes she’s sitting in a pool of the Nameless’s blood, and the blood must be poisonous.
 
Merry starts screaming in pain, as the burning from the Nameless’s poisonous blood is spreading through her body. Kitto tries to help her, but after touching her he also starts yelling in pain as blood starts pouring out of his chest.

Merry realizes that she caused Kitto to begin bleeding with her touch. She knows that this is the start of her second hand of power, and in order to cement its magic she turn her attention on the Nameless to make it bleed.
 
If I had to touch the Nameless for this new hand of power to work, I was going to die, but I was going to try with magic like you’d try with a gun.
 
That’s one sentence.
 
I pointed my left hand toward the creature, palm out, and thought, not the word blood but of blood. I thought about the taste of it, salty, metallic; the feel of it fresh and almost scalding hot in large doses, the way it thickened when it cooled. I thought of the smell of blood – that neck-ruffling scent – and the way enough of it freshly spilled always smelled like meat, like raw hamburger.
 
The chapter ends with Merry thinking about blood and walking towards the Nameless.

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