Chapter 21 begins immediately after Merry licked Jonty’s blood tear off her finger. It is as if time has slowed down for Merry. She sees a cloud of demi-fey fill the room. The demi-fey had been forbidden to come, since goblins often eat them. Then all the magic faerie dogs start pouring into the room.
Merry finally hears Frost ask “what is this?” And she comes out of her trance, or whatever it was. Royal, one of the demi-fey, tells them that it’s the beginning of creation, and Penny, Royal’s sister, tells them they’re just waiting on one more piece to complete it.
Then the giant black dogs run into the room, with Doyle following. He’s leaning on a small black pony, only Merry knew it wasn’t a pony, but a kelpie. Kelpies had been hunted to extinction in Europe before the fey fled to the US, so Merry is surprised to see one here.
Doyle tells them that the dogs wouldn’t let him rest anymore. Merry reaches out to touch him, but she’s stopped by Royal.
“No, Princess, that is not the point.”
I looked up at him. “You said the last piece.”
“He is the last piece, but you don’t have to touch him. You have touched him enough for this moment to happen. You have touched them all enough to call us to you.”
“Understand,” he finished for me.
And then this stupid chapter ends with Frost whining about how he doesn’t have a dog.
Chapter 22 begins with a rush of power filling the room.
The world exploded, if you could call light, color, music, and the perfume of flowers an explosion. I had no other word for what happened. It was like standing at ground zero on the first day that life walked on the planet, but it was also like standing in the most beautiful meadow in the world on a lovely spring day with the gentlest of breezes blowing. It was a perfect moment, and a moment of incredible violence, as if we were all gently torn apart and put together again in the blink of an eye.
LKH is not very good at metaphor or simile.
So finally when everything calms down, Merry notices that Doyle is completely healed, and that the dining room had changed. Instead of a large formal room, they’re now standing in a huge room of marble.
Merry sees some of the demi-fey swarming the Red Caps, but the Red Caps are not swatting them away like Holly/Ash are. No, instead the demi-fey are rolling around in the blood that pools on the Red Caps red hats. Jonty tells Merry that she has “remade them”.
They Rhys shouts out “Merry!” and she turns her attention to him. He’s standing by Frost, who had collapsed onto the floor.
I remembered then what I’d thought. He had had nothing to hold on to while reality remade itself. He had been alone in the terror and beauty of it.
And the, I’m not kidding, TWO PAGE chapter ends with Merry running to Frost.