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FQ Issue #5 ***SPOILERS***

Mkal

I feel quite pleased that many of my suspicions were right. I had guessed that Windkin could have been Teir's sire for the reason that Kahvi offered. I had felt that she would have wanted a part of Tyldak with her, but we now know why she abandoned her son. She feels that males are weak. She had Vaya and Venka (that we knew of)and I guess she felt like she would have produced another female.

wingthing

What Kahvi wanted was a mini-me. She constantly belittled Vaya until Vaya "earned" her approval with a glorious death, she raised Venka to be her "revenge" against Rayek, and when she had that notion to steal Cutter's sperm, she always spoke of the possible baby as a girl who would be chieftess. I have a feeling she either had a "perfect" daughter once, that she's been trying to basically reincarnate or she just keeps trying for this ideal Kahvi Jr. she can never quite get.

I doubt Teir would believe me, but he probably got off lightly. If he had been a she, "Teira" would have been stuck with Momm
y Dearest torturing her in person, not just in spirit. Sometimes I wonder what Venka would have turned out like if Kahvi had raised her alone. A lot less zen, at the very least.

Delhya

@wingthing Sounds like a alt Universe story to me. ~_^ Teira >giggle< I like it.

krwordgazer

Well, I finally got a chance to pick up my issue (I don't read the previews or the online issue, because I want to read the whole issue, without spoilers, in my hands. I'm funny that way).

I thought it was beautiful. It pretty much completes Act I, wrapping up this initial Recognition/Ember's capture story arc with satisfying closure, and leaving of course the loose ends that will move the story into Act II.

I had a number of thoughts about Teir and Ember, and the way Dewshine compared the two of them in the prologue. She said that they were a lot alike in that they both were in the tribe without "quite knowing how to belong to it." She said that though Ember is Cutter's and Leetah's daughter and a respected chief, she has never quite felt she deserved her position.

I found myself thinking about that as I read how Ember, who hasn't really been wanting motherhood at all, and Teir, who has been kind of obsessed with wanting to have a cub, have now met in the middle. She does want their cub-- someday. And Teir is now willing to admit he's not emotionally ready, that he needs to "learn more of family" first.

I'm an adult child of alcoholics, and some of these things seem really familiar, given what I've learned during my recovery. I think Teir and Ember, in different ways, both have abandonment issues. For Teir, though he had elves raising him that he thought were his parents, there was also the deep, semi-repressed memory that Kahvi had abandoned him. Ember, who was kidnapped in the Palace, had what must have been a very disconcerting experience of having her father change in an instant from a healthy, confident, involved father to a saddened, half-broken husk of his former self. While Sunstream was present during Cutter's healing in the Full Circle story, Ember was not, and has not experienced the new relationship with her father that Sunstream has.

I think Ember and Teir's different attitudes towards having a child of their own, spring from their similar wounds. Teir has wanted a child to compensate for his abandonment issues. Subconsciously, perhaps, he has wanted to re-create a family in which he could somehow fix what went wrong with his own childhood (though this never actually works). Ember has NOT wanted a child because she has experienced the harm that emotional un-wholeness in a parent can cause. She probably (as children do) at least partly blamed herself for the change in her father, and has therefore felt unworthy to be a parent herself.

Being able to confront Kahvi, to get angry with her, was a healing step for Teir, even though it also hurt him badly again. But suddenly being called "son," "grandson" and "cousin" has been a turning point for him. He is now able to see that family and belonging are truly possible for him, which has given him enough strength to realistically face that he's not ready yet for a child. He and Ember are finally, truly, on the same page as they take their next steps together. I'm very pleased to see the preview cover of the next issue shows Ember in Cutter's arms. This is exactly what she needs most.

One of the best things about Elfquest is how "deep" it is-- that the currents of the inter-relationships between the characters, and their inner motivations, are as complex as in any important literary novel. This is why it has generated so many rich discussions through the years on this forum. I'm looking forward to more!

Llannen

Been mulling another thought/question over....

Why was Windkin able to give Kahvi the child (fawn) she desired, one of Tyldak's line? And why wasn't Tyldak able to?

Was it because she didn't think to want it until Tyldak was gone? Or is it simply the matter of time and she had more time with Windkin to *ahem* practice at the act to obtain it?

Tavie

wingthing said: I have a feeling she either had a "perfect" daughter once, that she's been trying to basically reincarnate or she just keeps trying for this ideal Kahvi Jr. she can never quite get.


I think the second one. I imagine it's hard to be the child of a parent who wants a clone of themselves, and I thought Wendy did such a great job of portraying that in KotBW when we saw the glimpses of Venka growing up with Kahvi.

maatkare22

Why was Windkin able to give Kahvi the child (fawn) she desired, one of Tyldak's line? And why wasn't Tyldak able to?
Wasn't he dead?

stargazer

Why was Windkin able to give Kahvi the child (fawn) she desired, one of Tyldak's line? And why wasn't Tyldak able to?


Kahvi seemed to have ability to choose when to conceive a child. I expect she didn't think there was any rush to breed with Tyldak, after all, they had both lived for millennia, and she probably thought they would live for millennia more. Then suddenly, he was gone, and so was her chance to have a baby with him. Windkin was the closest she was ever going to get - at least the fawn would have something of Tyldak in him/her.

RedheadEmber

wingthing said: I doubt Teir would believe me, but he probably got off lightly. If he had been a she, "Teira" would have been stuck with Momm


I think you're right. Besides; wasn't Kahvi pretty much on a suicide mission ever since Tyldak died? How do we even know that she'd have stuck around long enough for a potential daughter to grow up?

manga


It's annoying to me that Teir's parents are both Original Quest characters (though Windkin's presence was mostly in-utero, I admit). Too darn inbred. I liked it much better when he represented a whole new tribe.

And Kahvi... ugh. In a lot of ways this seals my dislike of her ("I told them never to tell you I was disappointed in you - so let me make sure that's the first and second things I say!") But more, it's making me irritated with Elf-mom and Pop's writing. Once upon a time, Kahvi and Winnowill were strong characters with motivations and responsibilities. Now they're both just psychos.

And Ember denying Recognition? One of the founding principles of the "Elfquest" story? ARRRGH. One of the things I have always loved about "Elfquest" is the way children (the characters themselves and the general bearing, raising and living with them) is treated as a natural, integral AND VALUED part of life. It's not something I find often in literature of any genre. I loved it in "Elfquest" and I really, really don't like this turn. It does not fit with The Way, either the Wolfway or the general Pini-utopia-mindset as I've seen it. So what, Ember doesn't feel ready to be a mother. Neither did Leetah! Where would Ember be if Leetah had made the same choice? Also, how many times have we seen that the elves raise their children communally? If Ember doesn't want to be a full-time mother, I'm sure any of the others (Tyleet for sure) would be "happy to help parent the [cub]." (Originally from Moonshade in book 2, referencing the tribe's willingness to have raised the twins if Leetah had gone with Cutter on his quest.) This same matter of the tribe helping also mitigates, if not negates, Teir's comment about putting a hole in his child's heart - which I don't believe for one minute. He's so focused on giving the love and loyalty he so desperately wants, he can't help but be one of the most involved fathers ever. (Which may be a problem on it's own but no one - not even Cutter and Leetah - is perfect or a perfect parent. What's important is the loving and the trying.)

I'm also now pretty sure, based on the cover for the next issue, that Teir is going to die anyway and now Ember will have lost basically her lifemate and child in one blow.

I'm glad Ember's capture and the tribe's rescue haven't been drawn out - I was really expecting this to go a full book worth - but it also feels too fast, too easy. All that build up and -- poof?

One thing I do like - that comment about a "weapon that can't reach it's mark." Snork!

(As is usual, Wordgazer has shown me another way to look at things but I still can't it. And I speak as the adult child of an alcoholic too.)

jorenm93

Agreed with the Recognition-thing

travelbug

I think all of us feel quite a bit cheated about the cub who isnt comming :(

jorenm93

Not just that.
They're always talking about 'a natural drift to create good cubs etc' and now she's like 'Nah, I'm not into it, maybe later'. Dewshine wasn't able to refuse that easy... Same for Dodia

maatkare22

manga said: And Ember denying Recognition? One of the founding principles of the "Elfquest" story? ARRRGH...Also, how many times have we seen that the elves raise their children communally? If Ember doesn't want to be a full-time mother, I'm sure any of the others (Tyleet for sure) would be "happy to help parent the [cub]."


But, this can turn out a well-balanced personality (Skywise after his parent's deaths) or one with lifelong issues (Teir) Or...Batman I guess. So "just have the kid and let others raise it" isn't necessarily the best choice. I do agree that it really seems to stomp on one of Elfquest's bedrock principles, even though when you come right down to it "You have to have sex whether you like it or not" isn't exactly a terribly pleasant genetic imperative. (And no, I still have never forgiven Strongbow for his "Go ahead and take her and to Hell with what she wants" comment about Leetah way back when, even though I have read the Pini's eloquent explanation of the circumstances)

phaonica

For me, this was for some reason one of the better issues, though I have a lot of the same problems that have already been listed here.

Why was Kahvi able to get a child with Windkin and not Tyldak?

Were the hints that Kahvi was Teir's mother only something us readers were privy to? Did the tribe never talk about the potential? How did this never come up in any of the time that Windkin visited with Ember's tribe?
Edit: I suppose if the only hint of a connection between Teir and Kahvi was the episode with the braids, then there wasn't as much time as I'm thinking there could have been for the connection to have been brought up. I'll chalk that misconception of mine up to the distance between issues affecting my perception of time passing within the issues.

Why is Ember so special that she can refuse Recognition when Dewshine or Dodia couldn't?

I realize that part of the point of FQ is that the palace is changing some of the fundamental rules of the EQ World as we know it, but something about it seems wrong to me, like it somehow diminishes the struggles of everyone who came before who did have to live with the drama that Recognition could bring. It doesn't seem like a rule that needed to be broken.

Not to mention that Ember at first claims she refuses Recognition to protect herself and Teir during her capture and their escape, but instead creates the catalyst by which they are immediately rescued thereafter, so why bother?

lunakat

phaonica said: Why was Kahvi able to get a child with Windkin and not Tyldak?

I think maybe Kahvi just didn't have a child with Tyldak- and then all of a sudden, it was too late. Having a baby with Windkin, in order to create a new life with Tyldak's blood in it, was probably a sentimental move that she later realized did not make her feel any better about losing him. She must have thought of this well after the fact.

phaonica said: Why is Ember so s

I think the explanation given by the story is that Ember inherited this ability from Leetah- to push recognition to the sidelines... but that she and Tier weren't able to kill it completely without Leetah and Mender's help.

phaonica said: Were the hints that Kahvi was Teir's mother only something us readers were privy to? Did the tribe never talk about the potential? How did this never come up in any of the time that Windkin visited with Ember's tribe?


The only real hints that I know of came in the 'Recognition'' special- after Tier sniffed the braids. That overlapped with the Final Quest. So there was no reason for the characters to think he was related to Kahvi before that moment. Ergo, I doubt the tribe would have talked about it. But it is curious that Tier's biological father has been someone he knew this whole time.

phaonica said: Not to mention that Ember at first claims she refuses Recognition to protect herself and Teir during her capture and their escape, but instead creates the catalyst by which they are immediately rescued thereafter, so why bother?

That's a really good point. I'm with you on this one.

krwordgazer

phaonica said: Not to mention that Ember at first claims she refuses Recognition to protect herself and Teir during her capture and their escape, but instead creates the catalyst by which they are immediately rescued thereafter, so why bother?


But Ember couldn't have known that refusing Recognition would cause Teir to immediately fall off a cliff into a raging river....

phaonica

krwordgazer said: But Ember couldn't have known that refusing Recognition would cause Teir to immediately fall off a cliff into a raging river....

If she was concerned that unfulfilled Recognition would put him in danger, why not just call for his rescue in the first place?

krwordgazer

phaonica said: If she was concerned that unfulfilled Recognition would put him in danger, why not just call for his rescue in the first place?


I don't think she had the faintest idea that refusing Recognition would put him in danger-- certainly not the immediate and drastic physical danger that did happen. I think calling for the Palace was her instant response to that crisis, not anything she planned.

phaonica

krwordgazer said: I don't think she had the faintest idea that refusing Recognition would put him in danger

I can't help but feel, though, that if we as readers are supposed to accept the breaking of such a foundational rule, the whole conflict should have seemed more desperate, imo. Ember didn't think Teir was in enough danger to warrant a rescue call, yet we as readers are supposed to accept that he was in enough danger to warrant breaking the rules of Recognition. If Ember was willing to muster up to the extraordinary willpower (supposedly) of breaking Recognition, why was that preferable to having her tribe safely spirited away?

lunakat

It does seem that this particular storyline has been full of bad and/or hard-to-understand decisions made by Ember. From not visiting her brother when his first kid was born to this last one... Ember has been on a roll.

wingthing

Well... you can go ahead and shoot me now, but... when *has* Ember made especially good and/or easy-to-understand decisions?

Just sayin' :P

phaonica

lunakat said: this particular storyline has been full of bad and/or hard-to-understand decisions made by Ember.

I'd venture to say that it hasn't just been Ember. A lot of the characterization in this storyline has seemed strange to me. But they aren't my characters; I'm just here for the ride.

wingthing

Manga said: It's annoying to me that Teir's parents are both Original Quest characters (though Windkin's presence was mostly in-utero, I admit). Too darn inbred. I liked it much better when he represented a whole new tribe.

And Kahvi... ugh. In a lot of ways this seals my dislike of her ("I told them never to tell you I was disappointed in you - so let me make sure that's the first and second things I say!") But more, it's making me irritated with Elf-mom and Pop's writing. Once upon a time, Kahvi and Winnowill were strong characters with motivations and responsibilities. Now they're both just psychos.

And Ember denying Recognition? One of the founding principles of the "Elfquest" story? ARRRGH.


Thank you. Just... thank you.

phaonica said:Why is Ember so special that she can refuse Recognition when Dewshine or Dodia couldn't?


Ye-e-eah... I don't wanna *know* what Dewshine's thinking as she watching Ember blithely refuse to have a child with her beloved lifemate, while Dewshine not only had to have non-consensual intercourse (hmm... there's a word for that, what is it?), but have everyone tell her what an ultimately good thing it was!

phaonica

wingthing said: Ye-e-eah... I don't wanna *know* what Dewshine's thinking as she watching Ember blithely refuse to have a child with her beloved lifemate, while Dewshine not only had to have non-consensual intercourse (hmm... there's a word for that, what is it?), but have everyone tell her what an ultimately good thing it was!


Recognition has always had that much darker side to it; it's part of the drama of the concept. It'd be an interesting character arc if Dewshine did have some internal struggle over harboring some resentment against Ember for her decision (not only resenting Ember's choice and her ability to make it, but also struggling with memories of her own ordeal, struggling with how refusing Recognition does or does not fit into The Way, and how having such a struggle pulls her out of the Now).

I know it's kind of rehashing an old conflict, but at least, like Moonshade's arc, it would more dramatically present the consequences of the changes that are being depicted.

RedheadEmber

phaonica said: Why is Ember so special that she can refuse Recognition when Dewshine or Dodia couldn't?


As lunakat said, Ember probably inherited the ability from Leetah. Back when Cutter and Leetah Recognized Leetah denied it too. She ended up accepting it, but she probably could have "left Cutter hanging for a year." as Rayek seemed so sure she'd do.



manga said: And Kahvi... ugh. In a lot of ways this seals my dislike of her ("I told them never to tell you I was disappointed in you - so let me make sure that's the first and second things I say!")


I kinda figured the reason Kahvi so deliberately taunted Teir was because it was the only way to make him angry enough to "swim after her", Thus swimming for the surface.
She didn't want him to know that he was unwanted when he was a child, thing is; he is not a child anymore.



phaonica said: Recognition has always had that much darker side to it; it's part of the drama of the concept. It'd be an interesting character arc if Dewshine did have some internal struggle over harboring some resentment against Ember for her decision (not only resenting Ember's choice and her ability to make it, but also struggling with memories of her own ordeal, struggling with how refusing Recognition does or does not fit into The Way, and how having such a struggle pulls her out of the Now).


Not to mention cheating her out of a great-grandchild.

jeb

I feel like it's time to do what I haven't done yet and re-read all the issues straight through and see if I can't make sense of Ember's "Don't save us - OK, save us now" strategy. I'm sure that this whole episode will be extremely important later, but it's kind of puzzling now.

I almost feel like it's a set-up for a reveal that Ember had some kind of visitor from the future that convinced her that she should not have a child with Tier.

But, then again, maybe it's just important to the story that Ember and Tier don't have the relationship they've been shown to have, and this was just a dramatic reset.

lunakat

jeb said: I almost feel like it's a set-up for a reveal that Ember had some kind of visitor from the future that convinced her that she should not have a child with Tier.


Ooh! Oooh! Like Terminator 2!

Or- this could just be Ember inventing freedom of choice. Which is not invalid. It's not invalid to decide not to have children or to postpone it. The way I see it here, Ember basically is having the elf equivalent of an abortion. The kid was on its way- and she put a stop to it.

I think, mostly, what we are reacting to isn't Ember's choice, but the question of whether it breaks the established rules of the fictional universe.

phaonica said: It'd be an interesting character arc if Dewshine did have some internal struggle over harboring some resentment against Ember for her decision


Just like a woman who grew up in the fifties- who got pregnant unexpectedly and was compelled to marry the father raise the child (thus derailing her life) might have some resentment against her daughter who, in college, decides to have an abortion so that she can finish her degree and focus on her career... until she is ready to start a family. It would not be unusual for the mom to be jealous or resentful- or feel that her daughter wasn't taking full responsibility for her actions, as she herself had been forced to do. Yes, I suppose it would be understandable for Dewshine to feel this way. Then again, there would always be the mother who was glad that her daughter didn't have to give up what she gave up-- that the world had changed enough to allow for a choice.

RedheadEmber said: She didn't want him to know that he was unwanted when he was a child, thing is; he is not a child anymore.


You know what I liked about this moment? What really resonated with me? It was Tier's realization that he could never, ever, ever get the validation he wanted from Kahvi. He had spent his whole life being angry and upset and suffering- and it didn't impress her at all and never would. It was a waste of his time.

RedheadEmber

jeb said: I feel like it's time to do what I haven't done yet and re-read all the issues straight through and see if I can't make sense of Ember's "Don't save us - OK, save us now" strategy. I'm sure that this whole episode will be extremely important later, but it's kind of puzzling now.


I just figured the "Save us now." (Or rather, save him, as in Teir) happened the instant Teir fell off that cliff. She never really asked to be saved herself, Cutter and co. just decided to go rescue her.

I think it actually says it pretty well in the issue how the others aren't just 100% "Yay! This 'cheating your way out of Recognition' thing is just super-duper awesome!"
Besides; maybe they didn't really quell it, maybe it's still there and that's the reason for Ember's state on the cover for issue 6. Maybe Teir has gone off for a father-son-bonding-trip with Windkin when suddenly Ember goes all fainty on them and they realise that she really need to answer Recognition right now.

lunakat

wingthing said: Well... you can go ahead and shoot me now, but... when *has* Ember made especially good and/or easy-to-understand decisions?


Her decisions were easier to understand before she became chief. Then, she was just a kid acting like a kid. After- she was a kid in charge of adults acting confused.. and later just became flat out cryptic.

lunakat

RedheadEmber said: Besides; maybe they didn't really quell it, maybe it's still there and that's the reason for Ember's state on the cover for issue 6.


Well- Leetah did say that she and Mender had never tried this before and that she thought it could work. So yeah, that would be plausible.

phaonica

RedheadEmber said: As lunakat said, Ember probably inherited the ability from Leetah. Back when Cutter and Leetah Recognized Leetah denied it too. She ended up accepting it, but she probably could have "left Cutter hanging for a year." as Rayek seemed so sure she'd do.


I suppose that I hadn't interpreted what Leetah did as turning off Recognition, but rather having a strong enough willpower to deny it for as long as she did, and that eventually she'd have to go through with it. However, I just found a quote from ElfMom that says: "as a powerful healer, Leetah could control the urge of Recognition - even supress it - for as long as she wanted" (http://www.elfquest.com/forums/discussion/3738/ask-elfmom-did-the-idea-of-recognition-change-over-time). So I guess I've been wrong about that all these years.

If Ember's ability to turn off Recognition is influenced more by magic than by willpower, then it's somewhat easier to accept the rule being broken. (Though I don't remember if Leetah offered to help suppress Recognition for Dewshine back when that was a problem.)

phaonica

lunakat said: You know what I liked about this moment? What really resonated with me? It was Tier's realization that he could never, ever, ever get the validation he wanted from Kahvi. He had spent his whole life being angry and upset and suffering- and it didn't impress her at all and never would. It was a waste of his time.


I think that Kahvi's characterization was my favorite thing about this issue. To me, Kahvi has always been capable of crossing the line into what I would call villainous behavior. She can be cruel in ways that are decidedly not endearing, but somehow still comes across to me as someone who might be a good person who does bad things.

Knightbird

phaonica said: I think that Kahvi's characterization was my favorite thing about this issue. To me, Kahvi has always been capable of crossing the line into what I would call villainous behavior. She can be cruel in ways that are decidedly not endearing, but somehow still comes across to me as someone who might be a good person who does bad things.


Right out of one of my writing guides "What makes good people do bad things...because they have a agenda."

krwordgazer

Hmm. I haven't really had any trouble with the characters' motivations throughout this arc-- not even Ember's. When she gave herself up to Angrif Djun, she knew that this would mean that instead of Angrif sending a large number of troops after them hell-for-leather, a greatly diminished force would follow her tribe. There wouldn't be enough humans following them, for instance, to split into groups and surround or cut them off. Angrif himself would have found it somewhat painful to ride a horse-- but I'm sure he would have put much more effort into sending pursuit if he hadn't had Ember in his grasp.

Ember didn't want the Palace to come and save her or the tribe unless it became absolutely necessary-- for the reason that a strong tribe, and a strong chief, fight their own battles. For the tribe to not become dependent on the Palace (and thus weakened), the deus-ex-machina must not be called upon too easily-- and this is not just for the sake of the plot, but is logical within the framework of the story.

When Teir fell off the cliff and was drowning, it suddenly became emergency enough. Ember shut down Recognition as an attempt to help strengthen Teir so as NOT have to call for the Palace, but it backfired on her.

That's the way it looks to me.

Thornbrake

krwordgazer said: That's the way it looks to me.


Me too. I don't think there's anything that's happened so far that doesn't have a good, plausible explanation. Even if it does take some reflection on it to figure that out.

Delhya

Well Put @krwordgazer. =D>

Change is coming, the elves said it and they don't even understand the depth of what it brings. Adapt or perish. Everything can't stay the same, as for the Founding principles that were mentioned; Foundations settle and shift over time no matter how strong they were first built. :-D

jeb

I don't know, when you talk about deus ex machina I think more of Star Trek and Jordi pulling some engineering trick out of his butt at the eleventh hour. And you can't say "no, that can't happen", cuz who can argue with 24th century technology. The palace is a known quantity. One of the things it's shown to do, its primary function in fact, is move people around very quickly. I don't think it's a sign of a good leader to ignore resources that are available. "I'm tied up by this sadistic jerk, his army is after my tribe, but let's see how this plays out. Let's see how bad it gets before I call in the calvary."
And I know it's all about plot development and things need to happen. I guess I just feel it's kind of weak at the moment. I'm sure I'll probably feel differently as more is revealed.

Tavie

maatkare22 said: when you come right down to it "You have to have sex whether you like it or not" isn't exactly a terribly pleasant genetic imperative.


that's the animal kingdom, yo

Tavie

lunakat said:



wingthing said: Well... you can go ahead and shoot me now, but... when *has* Ember made especially good and/or easy-to-understand decisions?

Her decisions were easier to understand before she became chief. Then, she was just a kid acting like a kid. After- she was a kid in charge of adults acting confused.. and later just became flat out cryptic.


Let's just say it: Ember's fairly unlikeable as an adult. She was a fun, sassy, spirited kid, and she was thrust into leadership far too young (even earlier than her father was) and it made her grow up into a moody, growly, brooding adult.

I like it. She ain't no Mary Sue, you know?

I don't really like her, mind - but I like the fact that she's unlikeable.

RedheadEmber

Tavie lunakat said: I don't really like her, mind - but I like the fact that she's unlikeable.


Sorry! I'm afraid I can no longer speak to you! :P

Delhya

I think Ember kept being Chief at howling rock in the hopes of Persevering "the Way" while everyone else lives in or near the Palace. To me she has the feel and Instinct of the old wolfriders without the know how since her growing up was so diverse and complicated.

She was flying on whims and instincts and did not want to be 'bailed out." She is still trying to find her place I think, the Wild Hunt vision she had with Huntress Skyfire speaks well for her attempts at leading and not quite knowing how.

Plus remember she is living in Cutter's shadow and Sunstream is a big deal with his gifts. She has only her Wolfblood (that we know of so far) and Heritage of Ten Chiefs to live up to in a very unstable world, no wolfrider has ever had to deal with.

Wild Hunt was a test for her, now she has further Trials and Tribulations to face as Chief trying to find her Way.

lunakat

That's pretty much what Dewshine told Tier in the beginning- right?

Heather

phaonica said: I can't help but feel, though, that if we as readers are supposed to accept the breaking of such a foundational rule, the whole conflict should have seemed more desperate, imo. Ember didn't think Teir was in enough danger to warrant a rescue call, yet we as readers are supposed to accept that he was in enough danger to warrant breaking the rules of Recognition. If Ember was willing to muster up to the extraordinary willpower (supposedly) of breaking Recognition, why was that preferable to having her tribe safely spirited away?


Ember has worked hard to keep "the Way", and was open with the fact that she didn't want to rely on the Palace in these types of situations. She didn't feel Teir and the others were in enough danger to need the Palace's aid and could get out of the situation, but if Teir continued his connection with her, it was going to distract him and then bring more danger to the tribe.
When she glimpsed her last connection of Teir to see him drowning, she knew it had become a situation that required the Palace. The Wolfriders couldn't save him. There was no chance of escape for him at that point, before that moment, there was a chance of escape.



Thornbrake

RedheadEmber said: Sorry! I'm afraid I can no longer speak to you!


LOL. I don't dislike Ember. I think we've seen her struggle with decision making, which is only normal. And I kind of like that she's showing some uniqueness among the elves in not wanting kids. It refreshing.

Thornbrake

jeb said: I don't think it's a sign of a good leader to ignore resources that are available. "I'm tied up by this sadistic jerk, his army is after my tribe, but let's see how this plays out. Let's see how bad it gets before I call in the calvary."


That's a good point, but remember, Ember isn't afraid for her own life. She even says it in this issue. She knows that she's more valuable alive than dead to the Djun. And I think it holds that they don't want to live their lives--especially when they're trying to live by the traditional Way--constantly being bailed out by the Palace any time there's trouble.

I think back to the Wolfrider elders discussing how it was possible to "let danger and death back into the Holt" in Hidden Years #9.5. They knew it was important for their overall survival as a tribe. Ember and her tribe are living that principle.

phaonica

Thornbrake said: they don't want to live their lives--especially when they're trying to live by the traditional Way--constantly being bailed out by the Palace any time there's trouble.

I think back to the Wolfrider elders discussing how it was possible to "let danger and death back into the Holt" in Hidden Years #9.5. They knew it was important for their overall survival as a tribe. Ember and her tribe are living that principle.


Ok, to an extent I do understand the idea that they are trying to preserve the traditional Way and a fundamental part of this story is the question of will it and should it be preserved, given that access to the palace has made the struggle to survive a choice rather than a necessity.

It seems like the struggle being a choice undermines the gravity of the conflict, though. I feel like Krim's death was less emotional because it didn't have to happen. Ember's capture was less dramatic because it didn't have to happen. I don't know... it's harder for me to get emotionally into the conflicts presented ... I can't even think of the words of the emotions that I want to describe ... the conflict was more emotionally gripping to me when it was a struggle to survive and not a choice to struggle...

And besides that, rejecting Recognition seems like something that would go against the traditional Way, though I could be mistaken.

wingthing

phaonica said:

Ok, to an extent I do understand the idea that they are trying to preserve the traditional Way and a fundamental part of this story is the question of will it and should it be preserved, given that access to the palace has made the struggle to survive a choice rather than a necessity.

It seems like the struggle being a choice undermines the gravity of the conflict, though. I feel like Krim's death was less emotional because it didn't have to happen. Ember's capture was less dramatic because it didn't have to happen. I don't know... it's harder for me to get emotionally into the conflicts presented ... I can't even think of the words of the emotions that I want to describe ... the conflict was more emotionally gripping to me when it was a struggle to survive and not a choice to struggle...

And besides that, rejecting Recognition seems like something that would go against the traditional Way, though I could be mistaken


THIS!

I realize having the Palace around to solve anything has to be addressed if we want conflict and tension, but the answer has to be something better than "We choose to struggle because it's the Way."

Soreyes

This whole thing about Ember putting off recognition because her mother could, just don't ring true. Back in comic #5 Leetah confided with The Mother Of Memory that she to suffers as Cutter from putting off Recognition.

As for Ember. I just shake my head and wonder. She reminds me of a special needs puppy. Willing to do anything but needs a lot of guidance.

RedheadEmber

Thornbrake said: LOL. I don't dislike Ember. I think we've seen her struggle with decision making, which is only normal. And I kind of like that she's showing some uniqueness among the elves in not wanting kids. It refreshing.


That comment was for Tavie. :P

travelbug

Recognition could in theory strike Ember and Teir again sometime soon, or one of them could recognize somebody else?

Thornbrake

lunakat said: You know what I liked about this moment? What really resonated with me? It was Tier's realization that he could never, ever, ever get the validation he wanted from Kahvi. He had spent his whole life being angry and upset and suffering- and it didn't impress her at all and never would. It was a waste of his time.


Yes, that WAS powerful!


phaonica said: I can't even think of the words of the emotions that I want to describe ... the conflict was more emotionally gripping to me when it was a struggle to survive and not a choice to struggle...


Yeah, that is true. Strikes me though that the Final Quest struggles are all about choices. Choices on how to live, where to live, what you choose to let affect you, even identity.


phaonica said: And besides that, rejecting Recognition seems like something that would go against the traditional Way, though I could be mistaken.


Another excellent point. Unquestioning acceptance of Recognition is definitely the Way, as the likes of Strongbow, Cutter and Treestump have all pointed out in the past. That said, Wendy and Richard do address this by saying that the reaction of the watching elves includes both sadness and doubt about Ember and Teir's choice. I think the same can be said for some of us fans too.


wingthing said: I realize having the Palace around to solve anything has to be addressed if we want conflict and tension, but the answer has to be something better than "We choose to struggle because it's the Way."


Why? Unless you totally take the Palace out of the picture, which already happened in both Kings and Shards storylines, making the deliberate choice to allow the risk of danger and death and live by the Way is the only way to do it.


Soreyes said: This whole thing about Ember putting off recognition because her mother could, just don't ring true. Back in comic #5 Leetah confided with The Mother Of Memory that she to suffers as Cutter from putting off Recognition.


Why is everyone assuming that Ember's denial of Recognition is totally permanent? Leetah blocked it for weeks, before she confided that to Savah that it was affecting her. My guess is that Ember wouldn't even have been able to stave it off that long. Remember, it took the combined powers of both Mender and Leetah and the Palace to break the biological demand aspect of Recognition, not just Ember's will.

jeb

phaonica said: It seems like the struggle being a choice undermines the gravity of the conflict, though. I feel like Krim's death was less emotional because it didn't have to happen. Ember's capture was less dramatic because it didn't have to happen. I don't know... it's harder for me to get emotionally into the conflicts presented ...


I think that probably explains my indifference to this storyline. It is hard to get too caught up emotionally when we know the palace is just waiting in the wings to save everyone when needed. I don't think there's much dramatic tension in this kind of physical danger.

And taking away the imperative of Recognition kind of removes that psychological drama as well. I guess it is like the conflict of living in Blue Mountain. You take away all the risk and things get boring. Maybe that's what we'll see a faction of the elves realize, too. Instead of asking to be taken to a place where there is no threat of humans, they'll ask to be taken to a place with no palace.

For Leetah denying Recognition, I could see that it could be seen like having a bullet in her body. Since Leetah was a healer, she could repair the daily damage and live okay for quite a while, but it would probably wear her down. And eventually the bullet would need to come out for her to be completely well.

Tavie

RedheadEmber said: Sorry! I'm afraid I can no longer speak to you!



=((

OK, I take it back! I LOVE EMBER!!!

:-j

sulken

While I personally completely understand Ember (would've been my choice, too), her postponing/ switching off the pull of recognition is against the very thing she actually intended to protect. Now she's preserving The Way, unless she doesn't like the consequences.

I wonder how Angrif is going to attack elves, who have such a powerful tool as the palace at their disposal. Couldn't they use the Scrolls of Color as some sort of spy-drone?

wingthing

Thornbrake said:Unless you totally take the Palace out of the picture, which already happened in both Kings and Shards storylines, making the deliberate choice to allow the risk of danger and death and live by the Way is the only way to do it.


I loved the bit in Wild Hunt where Ember wanted the Palace to evacuate from Howling Rock but Sunstream had to admit all sheepishly that Skywise and Timmain had taken it for a joyride in the stars.

I guess it's the whole "We'll choose the hard way until it gets TOO hard" that I have trouble with. Krim wanted suicide by human, so I'll let her have it, but Sust and Pool are both injured and the Wild Hunt is on the run -oops, Teir is drowning - NOW we can call the Palace.

What if we had seen the elves set up rules regarding the use of the Palace. Like, never let the humans see it (I assume everyone saw that giant crystal shell overhead.) Imagine the conflict if Ember had sent for the Palace immediately but it fell to Cutter to say " No, sorry,can't risk it. You'll just have to wait for a stealth land rescue. We'll get you...eventually." Imagine the uproar in the Holt. Imagine if Sunstream defied dad to rescue Ember.

lunakat

Wingthing just made some really good points. There were a lot of ways this aspect of the storyline could have been much more interesting. A lot of potential choices and complications that could have made the situation really intriguing were overlooked. As it stands, the conflict is very unsubtle, overt, black and white- and looks like it's going to be very straightforward in it's resolution: some will go- some will stay. I'm sure various elves are going to be upset about that- but it's not complicated. It's a simple concept. There could have been more shades of gray when it came to motivation, decisions, morality and consequence.

travelbug

this part of the story is just the first bit if the Final Quest, and seem most of all to gather loose ends and putting the elves where they need to be for the big kick of.
I'm choosing to believe the details that doesn't make a lot of sense now, will be more understandable as the story moves forward towards the stars

Thornbrake

lunakat said: As it stands, the conflict is very unsubtle, overt, black and white- and looks like it's going to be very straightforward in it's resolution: some will go- some will stay. I'm sure various elves are going to be upset about that- but it's not complicated. It's a simple concept. There could have been more shades of gray when it came to motivation, decisions, morality and consequence.


I think we should wait and see how it all plays out before making that judgement. I don't think there's anything black and white about Moonshade's stuffle to decided between immortality and the Way, the Kahvi-Windkin-Teir relationship, how Ember and Teir's Recognition played out, Khorbasi's rescuing of the children and Ember's reaction, the manifestation of Teir's abandonment neurosis within the context of Recognition, the implications of the humans having guns...lots of gray in how these were told/are being told.

As far as the "who will stay, who will go?" being a simple concept, so was the "discover and unite the elf tribes" of the Original Quest.

Delhya

Putting it that way (the reminder of who stays and who goes) @Thornbrake Makes me wonder have elves stayed on The world of Two Moons up through Future Quest somehow? That would be interesting, though keeping the way would be hard I'd imagine. The humans can do a form sending eventually (which is most interesting as to how they got there even with "Science") and their knowing/sightings of the palace (which makes them of course obsessed with it) so Hmmmm So many curiosities to unfold, I look forward to it.

Then again Jink's whole story is yet to be told. ;-D

krwordgazer

I think this is mostly a variation on a fairly consistent Elfquest theme: safety and stagnation vs. risk and freedom. I know having a Palace that can swoop in and save you may seem like it makes things too safe, but there's a real danger in that safety. I'm interested to see how the tension between the two continues to play out.

RedheadEmber

lunakat said: As it stands, the conflict is very unsubtle, overt, black and white


Actually. That could be the real conflict, in story.
Seems that for Ember things are pretty black and white right now:
Elves: Good
Humans: Bad. (Probably with the exception of Shuna, Shukopek, and Khorbasi.)
Think about her thought about 'humans just getting worse' and her reaction to seeing the human children.

captainvimes

Whinthing said: I realize having the Palace around to solve anything has to be addressed if we want conflict and tension, but the answer has to be something better than "We choose to struggle because it's the Way."


What I take from the story so far, is that the palace's influence is the direct source of why Ember could deny recognition. The little shards the elves are wearing have been in plain sight everytime the topic was raised, at least my eyes were drawn them straight away. Not just with ember but with moonshade as well. Maybe that's me wanting to see it to make it fit my 'theory'..?
The safety of the palace could be changing the elves' 'circle of life' on earth now that it's restored and elves are actively living in it. A twisted sort of evolution. No need for children if there's no risk of death. The palace can't contain too many elves, maybe? Like the elves in blue mountain, who were immortal, hid themselves from the outside world and stopped having children.

That's what makes it more and more interesting to me that specifically Ember, who's in charge of protecting the way with life and death and everything in between, made that choice about recognition. I'm intrigued! And damn curious :)

elfeneyes

I'm sorry but I couldn't stop laughing when I read Windkin was Teir's Dad lol. Really throws that 500yr gap the Wolfriders were asleep into perspective.

RedheadEmber

More like an 9500 year gap. + the 500 years the Wolfriders waited before going into wrapstuff.

But yeah: Time-travel + "Outside of time" + Everybody having lots of sex = Some rather confusing families!

Queenie

"Ember! Skywise's sword will free you!" Seriously Windkin, a little bit tmi.

Kinda reminds me of that sun villager from the original quest. "My bread! My freshly baked bread!!"

Details are apparently important to the elves in critical situations:)

wingthing

Queenie said: Ember! Skywise's sword will free you!" Seriously Windkin, a little bit tmi.


Seriously, you know if he hadn't said that, some eagle-eyed and hypercritical fan would go "Hey - that's Skywise's sword, what's Windkin doing with his sword? Plot hole! I call shenanigans!"

... that's what I'd have said, anyway. ;))

TalonClaw

Thinking about the Palace . . . what about its time traveling capabilities? What would happen if, say they come across a 'copy' of the palace from another time, and then meet themselves? I have always wondered since Kings of the Broken Wheel, why they didn't go back in time and 'fix' the mess. Maybe someone else will try or the spirits or something else will want to take it for a time travel spin.
Just a crazy thought.

Tam

They've referenced the idea of going back and "fixing" things in canon. In FQ, even, I just can't remember where. But essentially, if it's meant to be, it will happen anyway, regardless of what they do to try to fix it.

RedheadEmber

TalonClaw said: I have always wondered since Kings of the Broken Wheel, why they didn't go back in time and 'fix' the mess.


Isn't that pretty much what KoBW was all about? Rayek trying to "fix the mess". Except he didn't go back in time, he went forward because "the mess" had happened when the Firstcomers accidentally got thrown back in time.

wingthing

I would have loved to see Rayek go back in time to fix his "fix". Can't you just imagine Cutter going all " Oh noes, he'll undo history, all the lessons we learned, all the lives born during those 10,000 years, everyone wiped out just after I finally made my peace with i-"

And then we're back on thorny mountain, two seconds after the Palace disappeared. Bang, it reappears, Rayek's all "Dude, sorry my bad, I didn't put the parking brake on. okay, forget saving the high ones - stupid idea. Hey, BTW, Kahvi is gonna be here in like six months, and I plan to sue for custody of our daughter. Who wants to be my character reference?"

Queenie



wingthing said: And then we're back on thorny mountain, two seconds after the Palace disappeared. Bang, it reappears, Rayek's all "Dude, sorry my bad, I didn't put the parking brake on. okay, forget saving the high ones - stupid idea. Hey, BTW, Kahvi is gonna be here in like six months, and I plan to sue for custody of our daughter. Who wants to be my character reference?"


Hahaha!

"And by the way. Nightfall, you might want to look around a bit before settling. He may be cute now but in 500 years you'll find yourself married to a garden gnome"

TalonClaw

And the breaking of timelines . . Cutter sees/meets himself from a timeline where none of KoTBW stuff happened. He would still be innocent and in the Way. I just have to wonder what would happen if the Palace ever goes back in time to change something, and then we could have multiple timelines. Lets say - if Cutter were killed, Skywise just might be tempted to change that.
It could get really weird, this 'final' Quest.

lunakat

Considering the glimpses we've had of Jink's backstory- it does appear as if something has happened that can't be undone.

Queenie said: "And by the way. Nightfall, you might want to look around a bit before settling. He may be cute now but in 500 years you'll find yourself married to a garden gnome"

Nightfall is like a teenager- she doesn't think ahead. Blame living by the Way.

wingthing

Queenie said: "And by the way. Nightfall, you might want to look around a bit before settling. He may be cute now but in 500 years you'll find yourself married to a garden gnome"

=)) =)) =))

RichardPini

Thornbrake said: As far as the "who will stay, who will go?" being a simple concept, so was the "discover and unite the elf tribes" of the Original Quest.


Brilliant! Bless you, my child. *-:)

krwordgazer

lunakat said: Nightfall is like a teenager- she doesn't think ahead. Blame living by the Way.


Heh. I know this is all a joke, but if we rejected potential lifemates on the basis of what they're going to look like years later-- almost none of us humans would ever get married at all. Nightfall didn't lifemate Redlance for his looks anyway.

krwordgazer

Well, that was a conversation-killer. Sorry... carry on. :-S

Thornbrake

krwordgazer said: Well, that was a conversation-killer. Sorry... carry on.


lol, no worries @kwordgazer. As always, your words carry wisdom!

RedheadEmber

One thing I really, really like about the issues was the ending. Not the Flying to the top of the mountain. MASSIVE CLIFF-HANGER, WAIT TWO MONTHS UNTIL IT GETS SOLVED! part of the ending, but just before that.
They have the Palace Pod, they could go anywhere. But as Teir said; "We've come this far." Not going to look what might be at the top of the mountain would be an awful waste of energy and innocent deer-life.

travelbug

Whatever they find at the mountain top, must be the introduction to the next chapter :)

But I feel quite calm about having to wait for those two months to find out

Llannen

If they tell us in two months. ;) I assume they will because of the cover of the next comic but I could see Elfmom/pop leave us dangling.
I have been puzzling and chewing at question of who is at the top...There has been reference to a demon healer...but I wouldn't think there is a new healer based on clues that Elfmom has said about too many healers being around now (with the Wavedancers). My theory is Rayek (& hopefully Ekuar). With Winnowill imprisoned within-somehow that satisfies the demon healer part in my head. But I've been so way off and some of you are more intuitive in picking up on the clues....

krwordgazer

I think there's some kind of enlightened human civilization up there. But I could be totally wrong...

lunakat

Whatever it is- it's not subtle. It's visible from a distance- from the sky.

travelbug

Maybe an "elf and human" society? Like a mountaintop town? Or castle?
It would be really cool if there's a new trive of elves up there.

I'd love to se Rayek and Eukar again <3 Venka and Auroree and Two-Edge as well.
I'm hoping some of them are up there :D

Knightbird

It would have to do something with Blue Mountain or someone (Ember possibly) would not have said "By the Halls of Blue Mountain". Ember would not really remember Blue Mountain, she was just a child and with the 'Now' of wolf thought unless something jars the memory hard.

Could it be something left over of Winnie's??? :!!

RichardPini

krwordgazer said:
Well, that was a conversation-killer. Sorry... carry on.


Don't you worry about a thing. You bring an element of balance that we find to be nicely calming. :>

krwordgazer

Oct 10, 2014

RichardPini said: Don't you worry about a thing. You bring an element of balance that we find to be nicely calming.


Shucks, I'm speechless.

8->

lunakat

Oct 10, 2014

Thanks for the conversation-killer guys! (just kidding)

You know we love you, krword- and your comment was spot on. I fully agree. You don't love a man (or woman!) for a beard or lack thereof. You don't love someone and chose them on the basis of looks. You love from your heart to theirs. (And then you decide if this is someone you can live with! Um... and then you decide if you are ready to settle down. And then... ) Anyhow...

carry on!

lunakat

Oct 10, 2014

Knightbird said: t would have to do something with Blue Mountain or someone (Ember possibly) would not have said "By the Halls of Blue Mountain". Ember would not really remember Blue Mountain, she was just a child and with the 'Now' of wolf thought unless something jars the memory hard.


That doesn't seem like an Ember type of comment. It sounds more like Skywise to me. Or possibly Windkin. (I don't know Windkin too well, but perhaps he talks like that!)

lunakat

Oct 10, 2014

Love, in my experience, is when you can't let go. You are just stuck attached to this person- for better or worse. And you can let them go. But you never really let go of them.

travelbug

Oct 10, 2014

I think "By the halls of Blue Mountain" is an unusual saying, isn't it?
Sounds like something an elf who have seen the inside of Blue Mountain would say.

Tavie

Oct 10, 2014

If "by the halls of Blue Mountain" wasn't foreshadowing, I'll eat Scouter's hat.

travelbug

Oct 10, 2014

It could possibly be Scouter who said it ;) he and Dewshine have spent most time in there out of this group of wolfriders.

lunakat

Oct 10, 2014

That does sound a lot like Scouter! He's always been very 'holy mountain of mystery Batman!' You know- I totally forgot the rest of the tribe was in there. I guess it could be Scouter or one of the others.

RedheadEmber

Oct 10, 2014

That expression gives me a feeling that whatever they're seeing might be something bad. Not like they have entirely good memories of The Halls of Blue Mountain. >:)

MaxvonBek

Oct 10, 2014

It might at long last be an explanation for where Khorbasi's little statue from 'Mender's Tale' came from. ;)

travelbug

Oct 10, 2014

It could be some sort of building as grand as the Blue Mountain.

I'm looking forward to when they'll publish the front page of #7. Hopefully in a couple of weeks :)

Knightbird

Oct 10, 2014

travelbug said: I'm looking forward to when they'll publish the front page of #7. Hopefully in a couple of weeks


Careful, something tells me it might be "and mean while back in the Palace with Strongbow..."

stargazer

Oct 10, 2014

"That does sound a lot like Scouter! He's always been very 'holy mountain of mystery Batman!' "

OMG...now I will forever more think of them as Dewshine and Robin! =))

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