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Re: [kencyr] When did Jame become such a bitch? *SM SPOILERS*

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  • Damien Sullivan
    ... I don t remember this stuff well enough to comment properly, but... ... Bortis? Hangrell? ... Vs. going out of here way to help Graykin but not feeling
    Message 1 of 10 , Sep 1, 2002
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      On Sat, Aug 31, 2002 at 12:47:25PM -0000, the_zedmeister wrote:
      > Her treatment of Graykin verges on cruelty several times despite the
      > price he has paid for serving her. I'm rereading SM in preparation

      I don't remember this stuff well enough to comment properly, but...

      > The problem is that the Jame of Godstalk, the one I met and really
      > liked, had compassion for *everyone*, Kencyr and non-Kencyr, family
      > and non-family (is there a word for that?) alike. She didn't

      Bortis? Hangrell?

      > always go out of her way to help them, but she felt for them.

      Vs. going out of here way to help Graykin but not feeling for him? Look, she
      raided the heart of the enemy keep for him, and just for him.

      Maybe she was afraid and taking it out on him. And he was whiny. Or she
      resented his having gotten into such a pickle.

      And Graykin is whiny and annoying. You talk about compassion for Taniscent,
      but she didn't have to risk herself and a bunch of Knorth cadets for
      Taniscent, or even deal with Taniscent that much.

      -xx- Damien X-)
    • passer_hedera
      The thing is, you have to remember how disillusioned Jame has been since Godstalk. Her beliefs about her god and her people have been thuroughly trashed, and
      Message 2 of 10 , Sep 3, 2002
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        The thing is, you have to remember how disillusioned Jame has been
        since Godstalk. Her beliefs about her god and her people have been
        thuroughly trashed, and she's stuck in a world that refuses to match
        her sense of honor or even her basic sense of dignity.

        Graykin is a great example. You can't take what he does in SM (after
        he's bound) on it's own--remember what he did in DotM. She gave him
        his name because the one he had offended her sense of dignity and
        what she believed he was owed as a person. She showed him kindness.
        And she gave him trust. And the little pig went out and the very
        first thing he did was to betray her to Caldane. Then, when he
        realized that the pay-off for his betrayal wasn't going to ammount to
        the price he wanted, he came back to her because he figured she was
        the highlord's sister, and being friends with her would have to be
        profitable in the long run. And he told her that was his reason for
        double crossing Caldane. He's not a great person, and he's exactly
        the sort Jame thought her people weren't. Then, when he offers to
        serve her, he offers to take honor's paradox for her--to fill the
        role that she finds so disgusting among her people--to take the fall
        so that the Lord's honor remains intact--so he remains a symbol of
        what she didn't expect and hates among her people. The binding
        happened accidentally, and now he's stuck being nice to her, not
        because he's loyal, but because he's bound. And she really resents
        that concept. So of course she resents him. He's a jerk who's nice
        to her because she used her power to make him nice to her, and she
        resents that power. I wouldn't like him either.

        Meanwhile, Caldane and M'Lady Kallystine exist, women are forced by
        convention to live as third class citizens (they're lower then the
        Kendar--they don't even get 2nd class), her people bind Kendar and
        then do cruel things with them, everyone keeps lying to her, Ishtar
        is being held as a great priest despite his treachery, her only
        access to her items of power is through Bane, and she knows that if
        she calls for them (and him) people will die and it will be her
        fault, her brother whom she's sacrificed everything for wants to kill
        her, her father was not only a jerk but a nutcase and a traitor, a
        woman's spat was allowed to elevate into the slaughter of her whole
        family, and the third chunk of her people who disappeared are back
        and pretending to be the voice of her god, and to top it off a lot of
        them want her dead.

        If you learned all of that in a little more then a year, wouldn't you
        get bitter and jaded too?

        -Hedera
      • OtherCat
        Hey there, thought I d interject a comment or two. ... *Nods* I d also so say that the problem is also that she lacks anything resembling a support system.
        Message 3 of 10 , Sep 3, 2002
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          Hey there, thought I'd interject a comment or two.


          -----Original Message-----
          >From: passer_hedera [mailto:but_the_sparrow_still_falls@...]
          >Sent: Tuesday, September 03, 2002 12:00 PM
          >To: kencyr@yahoogroups.com
          >Subject: [kencyr] Re: When did Jame become such a bitch? *SM SPOILERS*

          >The thing is, you have to remember how disillusioned Jame has been
          >since Godstalk.  Her beliefs about her god and her people have been
          >thuroughly trashed, and she's stuck in a world that refuses to match
          >her sense of honor or even her basic sense of dignity.


          *Nods* I'd also so say that the problem is also that she lacks anything
          resembling a "support system." Before, she was up to her neck in allies,
          and seemed to have an innate gift for causing people who *shouldn't* be
          getting along to become friends. She had Marcarn to be a surrogate elder
          brother, or maybe an uncle, Cleppety as a surrogate mother, and Penari
          as a strange sort of father figure. She was able to connect on so many
          levels, with many very different people...and now she can't. Rose won't
          cut her any slack, Kindrie is afraid of her and half the time thinks
          she's crazy, Lyra is not a fount of wisdom, Graykin is basically a human
          limpet, Kallystine is a bitchgoddess, most of the powers of Rathillien
          are playing "tag your dead" with her...and of the only two people who
          are pro-Jame, one of them is dead, and the other one is busily trying to
          keep her brother from committing sororicide.

          >Graykin is a great example.  You can't take what he does in SM (after
          >he's bound) on it's own--remember what he did in DotM.  She gave him
          >his name because the one he had offended her sense of dignity and
          >what she believed he was owed as a person.  She showed him kindness. 
          >And she gave him trust.  And the little pig went out and the very
          >first thing he did was to betray her to Caldane. 

          Here, I don't agree. Jame at this point is an unknown quantity to
          Graykin/Gricki. He doesn't know her from Adam. The only thing he *does*
          know is that he wants/needs to be accepted by the people who basically
          own him. Even if they treat him like crap.
          Jame in her naïve way immediately thought of him as Kencyr, with all
          that implies. Not realizing, or understanding that he *isn't* Kencyr. He
          might have some confused notion of what being a Kencyr is, or what it
          means, but he just doesn't get it.


          >Then, when he realized that the pay-off for his betrayal wasn't going
          to ammount to
          >the price he wanted, he came back to her because he figured she was
          >the highlord's sister, and being friends with her would have to be
          >profitable in the long run.  And he told her that was his reason for
          >double crossing Caldane.  He's not a great person, and he's exactly
          >the sort Jame thought her people weren't.  Then, when he offers to
          >serve her, he offers to take honor's paradox for her--to fill the
          >role that she finds so disgusting among her people--to take the fall
          >so that the Lord's honor remains intact--so he remains a symbol of
          >what she didn't expect and hates among her people. 

          Again, don't necessarily agree. The problem is, I think, that Jame
          really, and truly *doesn't* want to accept responsibility, for anyone,
          or anything. She's had a rough time, anvils are dropping, and she's been
          dodging them, but she's *tired*. Nobody trusts her, everyone discounts
          her, calls her mad, and what ever. She's sick of meeting everyone's
          expections, and is resentful that their expections are either impossibly
          high, or incredibly low. And here's Graykin, who simultaneously demands
          that she protect him, then insists that she can't possibly take steps to
          defend herself, or someone else that's within her sphere of influence,
          or whatever.


          >The binding happened accidentally, and now he's stuck being nice to
          her, not
          >because he's loyal, but because he's bound.  And she really resents
          >that concept.  So of course she resents him.  He's a jerk who's nice
          >to her because she used her power to make him nice to her, and she
          >resents that power.  I wouldn't like him either.

          No, Graykin *is* loyal, he is capable of loyalty, the trouble is, he's
          so desperate and needy, that I'm sure that Jame can't help drawing a few
          parallels between herself and Graykin. Graykin wants to be her dog, but
          at this point in time, she has no use for a dog. She needed a companion,
          a friend. Something that Graykin (at this point in time) isn't capable
          of being.

          Anyone have any idea of how old Graykin is supposed to be, by the way? I
          get the impression that he's young, not much older than Jame, or at
          least in his early twenties.
        • S-G Thomas
          Graykin s a bastard. Literally. His mother died before she could give him a name, and his biological father has been stringing him alone for years. His father
          Message 4 of 10 , Sep 4, 2002
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            Graykin's a bastard. Literally. His mother died before
            she could give him a name, and his biological father
            has been stringing him alone for years. His father
            only showed some interest in his abilities as a sneak.

            I think it's pretty harsh to say that Graykin turned
            from one leader to another when his reward with
            Caldane didn't come through. He didn't do it for
            monetary gains, he wanted the approval of his father.
            Hell, he wanted anything his father would give him.

            Caldane is his father, but he doesn't acknowledge
            Graykin. Graykin doesn't have ANYONE. No family. No
            friends. He's been on his own since birth. He would
            have done (and did) anything to have his father
            acknowledge him, especially as his son. He would have
            done anything to have a family.

            Jame gave him the name of a dog. A loyal and true
            spirit, but a dog. She felt guilty of course, but what
            is worse? Her guilt or his loving acceptance of a
            name, whatever that name may be?

            I love Graykin. He isn't noble or pure. He's been
            through hell, and is trying now to make good. He has
            turned over a new leaf, maybe not for righteousness
            sake, but because now, no matter what happens, he has
            a home, a family, a master. Given a chance, he would
            die for Jame. He would do anything for her because he
            belongs to her. He's trying to learn honor again. I
            think he'll go right now.

            Not many people can image what it is like not to have
            anyone. How many more of us could honestly say we
            would retain honor and honesty under such
            circumstances? Hell, most of us here on earth have
            family and all sorts of opportunities and still don't
            retain our honor.

            I gave Graykin a second chance when I was reading it.
            He offered Jame his services as sneak because he
            wanted to protect and serve her. To be useful and to
            be hers forever. There are ways to break the bond. And
            as Graykin jealously guards James soul, he fears more
            than anything to be left alone again.

            I think I like Graykin all the more because he wasn't
            some noble and pure shining thing from the start. I
            don't like book characters who have never been tried,
            have never failed. They loose dimension in the
            illusion of purity.

            Now, in truth, after having said all this, I would
            probably want to smack Graykin around too, but for
            Jame, I don't advise her to cast the first stone when
            it comes to overcoming a dark past. She may not have
            fallen, but she's done some things I wouldn't say she
            could be proud of.

            S-G

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          • S-G Thomas
            Sending messages out of order. I just finished this one. -S-G I m glad someone else noted this. It seems that Graykin is a reminder of all the things she
            Message 5 of 10 , Sep 4, 2002
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              Sending messages out of order. I just finished this
              one. -S-G

              I'm glad someone else noted this. It seems that
              Graykin is a reminder of all the things she doesn't
              want to face. It's strange though that she would open
              her arms to a dependent blind feline, but would shut
              out Graykin (mongrel that he is). Maybe she doesn't
              like dependents that can talk. I don't know. (Cats
              versus Dogs, perhaps?)

              Also, beating the piss out of Kindrie and Graykin seem
              a bit heavy handed. It's like whipping a beaten dog.
              However, she remembers who and what she is at this
              point (okay she remembered stuff, not everything) and
              is facing the past that she tried to erase with
              amnesia.

              She also doesn't want the company of people. She
              enjoyed Marc, but the fantasy of an ordinary life was
              lost, and she can't go back to the relationship that
              was before. She's struggling to find herself. For too
              long, the thought of family, of brother, kept her
              going. She's thrown away a lot of her hopes and dreams
              on a brother who is terrified of her and the past she
              represents. Reality is such a bitch.

              I don't think the transformation was too spectacular.
              She did injure those close to her. She manipulated
              Marc, wouldn't talk to him, and she sold a bit of her
              softness in the run from the city. In Godstalk, she
              healed in the city. She had friends and a pseudo
              family. The darkness of her soul lifted for a time. It
              didn't last. You can't hide forever.

              Let us not forget that she killed a god and then
              resurrected him. Oh sure, we can claim she did the
              right thing in the end. But she took away the gods
              life without really thinking. Destroyed without
              meaning to. Later, through control and thought, she
              re-created from the tattered remains of the Old
              Pantheon the Rain God. Ah! Maturity! Fixing what she
              broke!

              It's kind of funny, but she's really an adolescent.
              She thinks she's terribly mature, and yet she does so
              many things without thinking twice about them. She
              doesn't mean to hurt people, she doesn't mean to be
              cruel, but she can't deal with all the things that are
              surrounding her so she takes it out on others
              subconsciously.

              Again, this all just makes me like her more. It would
              be frightfully boring if she did everything right all
              the time, but this way you get to see her selfishness
              so plainly and to see how she tries to redeem herself.
              She's moving towards understanding, but we're seeing
              the ugly stage. I might be taking this analogy too
              far. Oh well.

              S-G

              --- the_zedmeister <ljzotovic@...>
              wrote:
              > Her treatment of Graykin verges on cruelty
              several
              > times despite the
              > price he has paid for serving her. I'm rereading
              SM
              > in preparation
              > for B&I, nad I've had to put down the book
              several
              > times because I
              > was feeling intense HATRED towards our beloved
              > heroine. The scene
              > where she slaps Graykin as he's - with reason -
              > complaining that she
              > never came for him is a case in point. When did
              she
              > become so
              > heartless?
              >
              > I could accept the explanation that she has
              suddenly
              > found herself
              > in a new world and has too much on her plate to
              > easily accept
              > responsibility for others. Her annoyance with him
              > would suggest
              > that. But... by the end of the book, she has made
              > her peace with her
              > obligations towards Kindrie and Bane, while
              Kindrie
              > remains an
              > outsider in her affections/loyalty/whatever. In
              > fact, the main
              > reason why she ends up accepting and rescuing
              > Kindrie is because is
              > he's family. If he weren't, she would have left
              him
              > in the priests'
              > clutches.
              >
              > So obviously she feels the need to honour family
              > claims, and
              > annoyance towards anybody else imposing. I could
              > accept this from a
              > kencyr, except that a servant should deserve as
              much
              > care as a
              > relative. And if Jame had been that way from the
              > beginning, I
              > wouldn't be typing this post.
              >
              > The problem is that the Jame of Godstalk, the one
              I
              > met and really
              > liked, had compassion for *everyone*, Kencyr and
              > non-Kencyr, family
              > and non-family (is there a word for that?) alike.
              > She didn't
              > always go out of her way to help them, but she
              felt
              > for them.
              > For example, she fights for the Res aB'tyrr
              > (spelling? probably
              > atrocious, from memory), justifying it as a fair
              > exchange for their
              > hospitality, but it is evident that she both
              cares
              > for the staff on
              > a personal level and feels for underdog in the
              Trade
              > War. Or look at
              > Tanis. Jame feels contempt because of her drug
              habit
              > but compassion
              > is there too - for the youth she's losing, for
              her
              > relationship with
              > Boris, for her eventual death.
              >
              > So where does such antagonism towards Gray come
              > from? After she
              > sends him to sleep in SM to prevent him from
              raising
              > an alarm at her
              > departure, she is slightly worried about misusing
              > her power, but
              > comes to the conclusion that she doesn't feel
              sorry.
              > WTF? then why
              > does she feel sorry for Kindrie? Just because
              he's
              > family? Jame,
              > what is your problem?
              >
              > Okay. Rant over. I just needed to get it out.
              >
              > the zedmeister
              >
              >



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            • passer_hedera
              I m certainly not saying that Graykin doesn t have redeemable qualities, that I don t like him, or that I think we should condemn him or something. I m just
              Message 6 of 10 , Sep 4, 2002
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                I'm certainly not saying that Graykin doesn't have redeemable
                qualities, that I don't like him, or that I think we should condemn
                him or something. I'm just saying that he's not the greatist of
                people, and that Jame isn't totally out on a limb in resenting him.

                Although, just a note--towards the end of SM, when Lyra gets thrown
                at Tori and Lyra declares Jame her "chosen sister" (did anyone else
                read that as a "sister-kin" reference, possibly?), that the ideal
                situation for my personal amusement would be one in which Graykin
                takes Lyra as his consort, and their child, being twice Caldane's
                heir and thus of "closer" blood would take the lordship. It just
                seemed like it would be such a perfect ending for Caldane.

                And I do like Graykin. I just don't think he's a terribly admirable
                person.

                -Hedera
              • Damien Sullivan
                ... There is that. This relationship isn t voluntary on her part. Who doesn t resent obligations they feel were imposed upon them? And we don t tend to have
                Message 7 of 10 , Sep 4, 2002
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                  On Tue, Sep 03, 2002 at 07:00:19PM -0000, passer_hedera wrote:

                  > what she didn't expect and hates among her people. The binding
                  > happened accidentally, and now he's stuck being nice to her, not

                  There is that. This relationship isn't voluntary on her part. Who doesn't
                  resent obligations they feel were imposed upon them? And we don't tend to
                  have to raid enemy keeps.

                  > then do cruel things with them, everyone keeps lying to her, Ishtar

                  Ishtier. Interesting slip, though. :)

                  > is being held as a great priest despite his treachery, her only
                  > access to her items of power is through Bane, and she knows that if
                  > she calls for them (and him) people will die and it will be her

                  This one is her own damn fault, for listening to Ashe. And she can also go
                  fetch them herself, without loss of life.

                  -xx- Damien X-)
                • Damien Sullivan
                  ... Bane and Grimly, you mean? For the future there may also be the Jaran. She fit in pretty well with them. I could imagine Kirien having tried to befriend
                  Message 8 of 10 , Sep 4, 2002
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                    On Tue, Sep 03, 2002 at 03:02:24PM -0700, OtherCat wrote:

                    > are playing "tag your dead" with her...and of the only two people who
                    > are pro-Jame, one of them is dead, and the other one is busily trying to
                    > keep her brother from committing sororicide.

                    Bane and Grimly, you mean? For the future there may also be the Jaran. She
                    fit in pretty well with them. I could imagine Kirien having tried to befriend
                    her more if Ashe wasn't in the way.

                    > Jame in her na?ve way immediately thought of him as Kencyr, with all
                    > that implies. Not realizing, or understanding that he *isn't* Kencyr. He
                    > might have some confused notion of what being a Kencyr is, or what it
                    > means, but he just doesn't get it.

                    Why isn't he Kencyr? I think he is, and understands what it means at least as
                    much as Caldane does. I believed him when he said "I'm no more likely to lie
                    than you are". As for twisting honor, and 'betraying' her (he hadn't given
                    her his word), hey, that's Kencyr these days.

                    > Anyone have any idea of how old Graykin is supposed to be, by the way? I
                    > get the impression that he's young, not much older than Jame, or at
                    > least in his early twenties.

                    Yeah, 20ish, or just 20. Ardeth mentions Caldane's indiscretions to Tori
                    earlier. Look, foreshadowing!

                    -xx- Damien X-)
                  • OtherCat
                    Comments at the // ... From: Damien Sullivan [mailto:phoenix@UGCS.CALTECH.EDU] Sent: Wednesday, September 04, 2002 10:55 AM To: kencyr@yahoogroups.com Subject:
                    Message 9 of 10 , Sep 4, 2002
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                      Comments at the //

                      -----Original Message-----
                      From: Damien Sullivan [mailto:phoenix@...]
                      Sent: Wednesday, September 04, 2002 10:55 AM
                      To: kencyr@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: Re: [kencyr] Re: When did Jame become such a bitch? *SM
                      SPOILERS*

                      On Tue, Sep 03, 2002 at 03:02:24PM -0700, OtherCat wrote:

                      > are playing "tag your dead" with her...and of the only two people who
                      > are pro-Jame, one of them is dead, and the other one is busily trying
                      to
                      > keep her brother from committing sororicide.

                      Bane and Grimly, you mean?  For the future there may also be the Jaran. 
                      She
                      fit in pretty well with them.  I could imagine Kirien having tried to
                      befriend
                      her more if Ashe wasn't in the way.


                      //Actually, I was thinking of Aerulan, as the only one who's openly
                      friendly to her. Bane...I don't think is actually capable of "friendly."

                      > Jame in her na?ve way immediately thought of him as Kencyr, with all
                      > that implies. Not realizing, or understanding that he *isn't* Kencyr.
                      He
                      > might have some confused notion of what being a Kencyr is, or what it
                      > means, but he just doesn't get it.

                      Why isn't he Kencyr?  I think he is, and understands what it means at
                      least as
                      much as Caldane does. 

                      //Sorry, he isn't. He's a slave. Caldane treated him as property, as a
                      non-person. The only name he had until Jame came along was "Shit."
                      Caldane strings him along with half promises, and pays him with casual
                      cruelty and betrayal. He's Kencyr, in that he identifies with the
                      people he's grown up among, but he's spent most of his life as a
                      non-person--that's going to affect how he reacts and responds to people
                      who are "more real than he is."

                      I believed him when he said "I'm no more likely to lie
                      than you are".  As for twisting honor, and 'betraying' her (he hadn't
                      given
                      her his word), hey, that's Kencyr these days.

                      //I always thought he was being ironic, there. :>

                      > Anyone have any idea of how old Graykin is supposed to be, by the way?
                      I
                      > get the impression that he's young, not much older than Jame, or at
                      > least in his early twenties.

                      Yeah, 20ish, or just 20.  Ardeth mentions Caldane's indiscretions to
                      Tori
                      earlier.  Look, foreshadowing!

                      //*nods* :>
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