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The Dragonbone Chair re-read – Part Two – Simon Pilgrim

The names of the three parts of The Dragonbone Chair (Simon Mooncalf, Simon Pilgrim, Simon Snowlock) certainly show the progression in Simon’s character. In this second part, he is outside of the Hayholt for the first time in his life, with all of the people he’s know left behind (or dead). At 15 years old, he is definitely a pilgrim, on his way to Naglimund or other parts unknown.

The introductory post is here, if you are interested.

The re-read post for part I, Simon Mooncalf is here.

Word of warning: This re-read post is LONG (about 5,000 words) as was the first one. This implies that each of these re-read posts are going to take a bit. I haven’t studied a fiction book like this since I studied my Gravitation Physics book (which was published about the same time as this one, and was mostly fiction).

This first book is 766 pages – paperback. Part  Two: Simon Pilgrim goes to page 221 to 470.

A note on the obvious: if you have not read the book, since this describes said book…here there be spoilers! And color commentary is in color (mostly in this color).

 

Chapter 15: A Meeting at the Inn – Simon awakens after witnessing the events at the Anger Stones, somewhere outside the forest Thisterborg, not quite sure what he just saw.

The vivid spring day was now corrupted by a mist of dream. What had happened last night? He had fled the castle, of course – those moments, his last with Morgenes, were burned into his heart – but after? What were these nightmarish memories? Endless tunnels? Elias? A fire and white-haired demons? (pg 222)

Reality slaps young Simon in the face with the fact that he can’t go back to the Hayholt, he has no money, and only skills in the kitchen. He is worried about being caught and returned to the castle for freeing Josua. He comes across a man hanged, with a sign that says he was a poacher, a thief.

Simon stumbles into the “monk” Cadrach again, and they share food and ale at an Inn named Dragon and Fisherman. When the innkeeper asks for payment, Cadrach produces the coin purse that Simon thought he had lost in Chapter 5. Simon accuses Cadrach and goes after him, but the so-called monk escapes, leaving Simon the prisoner of the innkeeper…whom he easily gets away from.

The chapter shows Simon’s frustration; he is alone and friendless, and when he blindly trusts people that trust gets trampled. He has only Morgenes manuscript, and the hope that if he can get to Naglimund that Prince Josua is there and will take him in.

Chapter 16: The White ArrowSixteen chapters in and we have a Sithi sighting. And much more in the evolution of Simon from mooncalf to…something else.

Alone again, with only Morgenes manuscript to keep him company, Simon realizes the camping and outlaw life ain’t everything it is made out to be in song and story. He does the “not fair, not fair” dance, and the “why does God hate me so?” whine.  He’s a not so skilled kitchen scullion alone in the woods. Starving or accidental death is a real possibility. Cold, he becomes a thief:

His heart beat swiftly as he pulled down a wool cloak so heavy with moisture that he staggered when it slid free into his arms. No alarm was raised from the cottage; in fact, no one seemed to be about anywhere. For some reason that made him feel even worse about the theft. As he scrambled back into the tangled trees with his burden, again in his mind’s eye a crude wooden sign bumping against an unbreathing chest.(pg 241)

The narrative says he is a week and a day away from the Inn when he passes near Sistan (kinda in the direction of Naglimund, according to the map which is so small I actually need reading glasses to see it!), staying away from people, eating little. Somehow he makes it through this part (because, you know, he’s like the main character). There is no “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” piece…he really is just stumbling along and surviving, not a natural super hero our Simon. But Tad does have him show persistence, and a stubborn “I won’t give up” attitude.

Five days west of Sistan (so he’s been living off the land for almost two weeks), Simon comes across a woodman’s cottage and meets his first Sitha (one of the Sithi), caught in a rope trap. His first impression:

The Fair One, as Rachel had always superstitiously referred to the race, wore a strange soft robe and pants of a slithery brown material only a shade darker than his skin. Belt and ornaments of shiny green stone contrasted most wonderfully with his hair – lavender-blue like mountain heather, pull back close against his head by a bone ring, dangling in a horse-tail behind one ear. He seemed only slightly shorter, although much thinner, than Simon – but the youth had not seen himself recently in any reflection but murky forest pools, so perhaps now he, too, looked this scrawny and wild. But even so, still there were differences, not-quite-definable things: birdlike motions of the head and neck, an odd fluidity in the pivoting of joints, an aura of power and control that was discernible even while its possessor hung like an animal in the crudest of traps. This Sitha, this dream-haunter, was unlike anything Simon had known. He was terrifying and thrilling…he was alien. (pg. 247)

The woodsman returns, and taking an axe, starts swinging at the Sitha. Even though the Sitha had earlier kicked Simon when he had gotten too close, Simon grabs a rock and smacks the woodsman on the back of the head. After being sick at the sight of the murder he just wrought, Simon releases the Sitha, and is rewarded with a White Arrow (shot at him, but hey, it’s a White Arrow). Then Binabik surprises him.

His first Sitha, and his first kill…followed quickly by a White Arrow, and a troll. A lot for ole Simon to take in in one Chapter and a lot of coincidences/strangeness: how does a Sitha get caught in a trap? what is he doing by himself? why was Binabik so close? Was everyone following Simon, or is this just one of those convenient plot points needed to push the story forward? I’m sure we will see this Sitha again, that I do recall (though I cannot remember his name).

Chapter 17: BinabikNow, show of hands…who is really the coolest character in this series? Binabik the troll, the faithful companion? Those of you that said “the cat” please put your hands down. Of course, it is Qantaqa, Binabik’s wolf companion. Hmmm…GRRM has dire-wolves in A Song of Ice and Firewonder where that idea came from?

After convincing Simon to take the White Arrow (“It is a Sithi White Arrow, and it is very precious. It signifies a debt, and the Sithi are conscientious folk.”), we get an introduction to Binbiniqegabenik, Binabik to his friends, a troll from Yiqanuc. Soon after, we meet Binabik’s “mount”, the wolf Qantaqa. Binabik has a slight accent (English ain’t his first language), but he turns a good phrase:

” ‘Bhojujik mo qunquc,’ as my people say.” Binabik made an expansive gesture around the clearing. ” ‘-If the bears do not eat you, it is home.’ ” (pg 255)

Simon, after a long snooze, shares a meal with his new campmate, who obviously knows a bit more about surviving in the woods that Simon (gee, ya think?), plus he has a wolf as a mount (probably cooler than having a Sithi White Arrow…at least until later in the book).

It seems strange that Simon shows little remorse or feeling over the woodsman he killed (the first man he has ever killed) even when Binabik questions him about it.

As they are both traveling in the same direction (at least, Simon says he is heading to Naglimund and Binabik says he will head that direction as well), they agree to travel together.

Chapter 18: A Net of Stars – This is the Simon-and-Binabik (and Qantaqa) get-to-know-each-other-while-traveling chapter, and Simon’s general attitude shifts upward, as depicting in the initial paragraph:

Blistered, sore-footed and clothed in rags, Simon nevertheless felt the pall of despair begin to lift a little. Both mind and body were badly bruised by mischance and he had developed a startled eye and reflexive flinch – neither of which escaped the sharp gaze of his new companion – but the brooding horror had been pushed back a short way; it had become, for the moment, just another painful half-memory. The unexpected companionship helped to ease the ache of lost friends and lost home – at least to the extent that he allowed it. (pg 261)

We get a common theme between these two, from Binabik:

“It is a difficult thing answering questions when one is having continual interruptions with more questions.”

And yet another Binabik-ism:

“A man’s soul is in peril when his feet are hurting.”

Simon is educated and entertained along the way toward the Knock, a high place on the road to Naglimund. Simon:

  • learns how Qantaga and Binabik came to be together;
  • learns how Binabik catches birds for their meals;
  • learns a bit about trolls; and
  • learns about Sedda, the Dark Woman (who is also Mezumiiru, the Moon Woman).

Binabik sings Simon a song about Sedda, and Simon’s eventual reaction is to fall asleep. I have a similar reaction on lyrics in stories; obviously the author cannot put the music in the paper (this is what enhanced eBooks can do!), but for my reading, a song in the midst of a dialog throws me out of the story, or makes me examine the lyrics for clues about what may happen in future stories…neither of which enhances the reading experience…so I tend to skip the lyrics. Sorry, Tad.

Chapter 19: The Blood of Saint Hoderund – As Simon and Binabik hike toward the Knock, Binabik tries to teach Simon how to “read” (navigate, survive) the forest. Binabik lets slip that “Simon must not have learned much in his castle”, even through Simon never told him he lived in the castle. Why is Binabik not being forthright here? He probably believes Simon would not believe him, or would be wary of him…or it is simply better for the story to wait.

But why can’t we walk straight down across the Knock? Simon wondered. It’s as though Binabik doesn’t want to be so out in the open…so exposed. …And what does he mean about a place no one asks…whatever all that was…is he hiding too? (pg 282)

They reach the Knock and Simon makes a plea for continuing their journey on the main road. But Binabik, while speaking somewhat evasively about the dangers of the road (again, he knows more than he is telling poor Simon) heads them toward a soft bed at a monastery “kind to travelers”, St. Hoderunds at the Knock. Binibik relates the story of battles, including where the man named Hoderund “rushed out on to the battlefield,  between directly the Hernystiri and Rimmersgarders, calling down onto them all the peace of Usires God. Caught between two pagan armies, he was quickly killed very dead.”

They come to St. Hoderunds, burned to the ground, many men, perhaps all, killed all around. Qantaga finds a man alive wearing monks robes, named Hengfish, who says he was away during the slaughter, and was taking care of two other wounded men, Langrian and Dochias. Langrian is injured but Dochias is mad, and he recognizes something in Simon:

“You know!” Dochias cried. “You know who it is! You have been marked! Marked like I was! I saw them as they passed – the white foxes! They walked in my dreams! The white foxes! Their master has sent them to put ice on our hearts, and take away our souls on their black, black wagon!” (pg 296)

Makes you wonder why ole Simon didn’t go mad like Dochias, since he has seen worse things and lived. Made of sterner stuff, the youngster is!

Chapter 20: The Shadow of the WheelWe’ve read passages of Simon dreaming before, and now it gets hard to distinguish his dreams (or nightmares) from reality. I’ve mentioned before that this is a characteristic that I enjoy in writing, and find several instances of it here and in the Shadowmarch series.

Simon wheel dream is a two-fer: he has a vivid dream of a massive wheel that sweeps him up its wake (representing how Simon has been swept up in history?) and maybe one of Morgenes sparrows with a certain ring in its claws?…

Now it was over him, rim foremost, a black trunk stretching to the firmament, raining turf down all round. The ground beneath Simon’s feet pitched forward as the weight of the wheel tipped the bed of the earth. He stumbled, and as he found his balance the black rim was upon him. As he stared, mute and horrified, a gray shadow passed before his eyes, a gray shadow with a flashing core…a sparrow, flying madly past, with some bright thing caught up in its curling grip. He flicked his eyes to follow, and then, as if it had somehow caught at his heart in its swift passage, he fling himself after it, out of reach of the plunging wheel. (pg 297-298)

…and he has a dream argument with Pryrates, who recognizes Simon and says he will find him and something worse.

And then there was a greater darkness, a shadow beneath the shadow of the wheel, and deep in that shadow two red fires bloomed, eyes that must have gazed from a skull horribly full of flame.
No, mortal, a voice said, and in his head it had the sound of ashes and earth, and the mute, unvoiced end of things. No, this is not for you. The eyes flared, full of curiosity and glee. We will take this one, priest.
Simon felt Pryrates hold slipping away, the alchemist’s power withering before the dark thing.
Welcome, it said. This is the Storm King’s house, here beyond the Darkest Gate….
What…is…your…name? (pg 299)

Simon shows that he is much stronger at resisting these dark things that he should be for a inexperienced 15 year old.

Still, he knew that he was caught up in something larger than just the struggle of royal brothers – greater even than the death of that good old man Morgenes or the slaughter of a score of holy men. These were all but eddies of some larger, deeper current – or rather, small things crushed by the heedless turning of a mighty wheel. His mind could not grasp what is all might mean, and the more he thought, the more elusive such ideas became. He only understood that he had fallen beneath the wheel’s broad shadow, and if he were to survive, he must harden himself to its dreadful revolutions (pg 302).

Simon reads a passage in Morgenes’ manuscript about King John and Camaris, who wielded the sword Thorn, whilst getting water for Binabik. Then Brother Dochias (the mad one) dies, and Brother Langrian awakens. He tells the story of what happened at the Abbey, of men lying in wait for a “party of Rimmersmen coming North from Erchester” and the fight/slaughter that occurred.

Simon and Binabik go foraging in the Abbey for supplies or any food, with dead men all around them. I still would have liked Simon to have shown more remorse for his first kill (the woodsman to save the Sitha) especially given this passage as he wanders the abbey:

A part of him was scornful of his weakheartedness – hadn’t he already see violent death, a battlefield full in a few short weeks? – but he realized as he walked…trying to keep his eyes ahead to avoid the sight of other eyes, glazed and cracked in the sun…that death, at least for him, was never the same, no matter how veteran an observer he had become. (pg 310)

Simon finds himself a pair of boots, but gets captured and knocked out by someone speaking Rimmersgard words.

Chapter 21: Cold Comforts – A chapter from old Duke Isgrimnur’s perspective, finally on the road heading to his northern home, out of Elias’ control (he hopes). It was the Duke’s men who were somewhat ambushed at the abbey (although they were warned and gave as good as they got), with the ambushers “countrymen” and “their leader had worn a helmet in the form of a snarling hound’s face.” The Duke is not certain who would have tried to waylay him, though he has many enemies (Skali who the King has sent to rule in the Duke’s place, apparently…but we all know it was Pryrates doing, don’t we?).

We meet Einskaldir and Sludig, two of the Dukes men, who went back to the abbey to retrieve their fallen comrade and captured Simon in the process. The Duke questions Simon, who makes up a good story, and the Duke says he can travel with them to Naglimund.

A strange storm had been approaching, and we get our first sighting of Bukken, sharp toothed creatures that spring from the ground and attack the Rimmersmen. Binabik comes into camp with Qantaga, rescuing Simon, telling him to leave the Rimmersmen to fend for themselves, as Simon is Binabik’s responsibility (“My duty is to get you to safety”…”You are my charge.”).

“It was my bound promise to protect you,” Binabik said dragging Simon along. “That was Doctor Morgenes’ wish!”
“Doctor…?! You know Doctor Morgenes…?!” (pg 329)

Chapter 22: A Wind from the North – we leave Simon’s narrative and see what else is up. This was a bit of a jolt since most of the narrative had followed Simon thus far. But Osten Ard is a big world.

The King (Elias) sends Guthwulf to Hernystir to threaten Lluth into paying taxes. He asks about Fengbald failure in finding Simon (“Did he not have the hounds I gave him? And the master huntsmen?”). Princess Miriamele apparently has taken ill and been sent away…at least, that’s what they say!

Meanwhile, in Nabban, Eolair from Hernystir is meeting with Duke Leobardis (whose brother is Camaris, bearer of the sword Thorn that Simon was reading about in Chapter 20). There is much polite politicking, with Eolair trying to convince the Duke to side with Hernystir and Josua (if it comes to that) while the King’s emissary Fluiren (who is from Nabban) and the duke’s son Benigaris (plus, apparently the duke’s wife, Nessalanta who is also the aunt of Princess Miriamele; the players are getting complicated) all see safety in siding with King Elias.

Chapter 23: Back into the Heart – Back to the Simon and Binabik narrative, and as they run, Simon peppers Binabik with questions about how he knows Morgenes and why he promised to protect Simon. This is a short but informative chapter which reveals the League of the Scroll (which could be called the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen and Trolls).

Binabik tells of his master, Ookequk, who had met Morgenes before (and had taught Morgenes to use sparrows to send messages; is Binabik careful about which birds he hunts in the forest? He could be eating the messenger!). Binabik and Ookequk were on their way to meet with Morgenes, seeing bad signs along the way (similar to the Bukken that just attacked Simon while in the Duke’s camp). On All Fool’s Eve (same night as the big bang in the Hayholt) Ookequk asks Binabik to stand watch over him while he walked the Road of Dreams, but he dies after telling Binabik a few secrets (maybe the big bang was Ookequk fighting with the Storm King in dreamland?). While waiting with Ookequk’s body trying to decide what to do, Morgenes’ sparrow reaches him with a note and “something else” attached; the note tells of the events at the Hayholt and asks Ookequk to watch out for Simon.

Simon informs Binabik that Morgenes died, which surprises Binabik. Binabik shows Simon a pendant with a scroll and quill pen, which was Ookequk’s, and Simon had seen Morgenes with a similar one. They were part of a group of “learned men” called the League of the Scroll.

Binabik believes, with all Simon has just told him and with the appearance of the Bukken, that they must go back into the forest Oldheart, to avoid the Bukken (they cannot come into the forest, it is alive, but no Ents so far) and to seek the counsel of the wise woman Geloë.

Chapter 24: The Hounds of Erkynland – Simon continues to show evidence that he is connected to the Road of Dreams, as he has a dream of a tree that he mistakes for Green Angle Tower…but it looks like the frozen tree they will be seeking later (I do remember a bit).

Binabik sees campfires behind them, but they decide to eat and read more of Morgenes’ manuscript, this part about King John battling and beating the Nabbani, and the main fight between Preseter John wielding Bright-Nail and Camaris wielding Thorn. Binabik had hoped to prove a point about when to use honor, but when Simon doesn’t get it, we get another Binabik-ism:

” ‘When it falls on your head, then you are knowing it is a rock.’ ” (pg 364)

Pryrates mentions earlier that he is sending special hunters after Simon. They hear hounds and starting running, with Binabik riding Qantaqa. The hounds pursue them, and they finally glimpse the hounds at the edge of a cliff.

Chapter 25: The Secret Lake – The hounds have them pinned at the edge of a cliff (a cliffhanger, eh?). Binabik gets Simon and Qantaqa onto a tree toppled over the edge, as he lures the hounds to him. Binabik jumps off the cliff as the hounds leap at him…but he is tied to a trunk with a rope, and several of the hounds plunge to their death. One stalks Simon on the tree, and Binabik kills it will a poison dart.

On the dog’s chest, burned black through the short hairs, was a slender triangle with a narrow base. It was a branded mark, like the kind the Thirthings men burned into the flanks of their horses with flame-heated spears.
“That sign is for Stormspike,” Binabik said quietly. “It is the mark of the Norns.”
“And they are…?”
“A strange people. Their country is north even of Yiqanuc and Rimmersgard. A great mountain is there – very tall and with a covering of snow and ice – called Stormspike by the Rimmersmen. The Norns do not travel in the fields of Osten Ard. Some are saying that they are Sithi but I do not know if that is a truth.” (pg 379)

They continue their travels, and hear more hounds, but also someone crying. Simon starts to run toward them (not away), prompting yet another Binabik-ism:

” ‘If you wish to carry a hungry weasel in your pocket, it is your choice.’ ” (381)

Qantaqa and Binabik kill a hound circling a tree, and Simon discovers Malachias (who he thinks had been stalking him in the castle) with another child. They hear the horn of a huntsman (supposedly the one handling the big dawgs) and send Qantaqa to draw off the sent while they hide nearby. From their vantage point, they see Baron Heahferth, a “crony of Earl Fengbald” and Ingen Jegger, the huntsman, obviously the “master huntsman” Elias refers to in Chapter 22 (and who Pryrates said he would send after Simon).

“Black Rimmersman, I am thinking,” said Binabik. “They are a rare lot, not often seen except at northernmost settlements where they sometimes come to trade. They do not speak the language of Rimmersgard. It is said they live on the fringes of the lands belonging to the Norns.”
“The Norns again,” Simon grunted, ducking beneath a branch that had sprung from Malachias’ careless hand. He turned to confront the troll. “What is going on? Why should such people be concerned with us?” (pg 388)

Malachias’ companion, Leleth, is in need of medical help, so they hurry to Geloë’s house. Simon swears that he see an owl fly into her house on the lake.

Chapter 26: In the House of Geloë – Qantaqa is already there, and the Valada Geloë seems to know that they were coming, and know them. Binabik relates to her their trip:

“This is far more than the striving of a king and his brother,” she continued. “The contendings of kings can beat down the land, can uproot trees and bathe the fields in blood,” a log collapsed with a pop of sparks and Simon jumped, “but the wars of men do not bring dark clouds from the north, or send the hungry bears back to their dens in Maia-month.”(pg 394)

Simon dreams of Dr. Morgenes, who warns him to “beware of false messengers” and Geloë is interested that he dreams of Morgenes while in her house. Binabik asks about other dreams, but Simon cannot remember. Geloeë and Binabik decide they, along with Simon, should travel along the Road of Dreams, as Binabik’s master had done.

As the travel the road of dreams, they see/experience several things:

  • they see Stormspike, the home of the Norns;
  • it appears the Norns are preparing for battle;
  • Simon sees Utuk’ku, the Queen of the Norns;
  • they see three swords, and runes describing a book, which Geloë identifies later as the Weird of the Swords;
  • the Storm King recognizes Simon again (“little fly”) and Geloeë saves him in the dream world.

This causes Simon to remember some bits of what happened to him on the hill with the Anger Stones when he first saw the Norns. Malachias then admits that he was the one shouting Simon’s name in the lich yard when he came out of the cave and that he (Malachias) is really a she (Marya). Did Simon tell Malachias his name when they scuffled as he was coming down from Green Angel Tower many chapters ago??

Marya says she has a message for Prince Josua from his niece Miriamele, so they all need to get to Naglimund. Geloë tells them they must go through the forest to the old Sithi city of Da’ai Chikiza (which could be Sithi for Chichen Itza…but probably not). Leleth is not well enough to travel and must stay.

Chapter 27: The Gossamer Towers – Their pursuers find them, and thanks to a Geloë-as-owl-distraction, they slip past the men in a boat going down a small inlet. As Simon retrieves the boat they will use, he gets a nice glimpse of the underside of Geloë’s house:

And as he stepped carefully over it, sliding silently through the water toward the shadow that was Geloë, he suddenly realized that what the tree roots – or branches or whatever they were – what they truly looked like was…some kind of monstrous foot. A claw, actually, the claw of a bird. What a funny idea! A house did not have bird’s feet, any more than a house got up and…walked. (pg 418)

As they make their way through the river, Simon starts watching Marya, and semi-trying to flirt with her (semi, because he really doesn’t know how, does he). He also gets a taste of Sithi magic, when he decides to caste his White Arrow away with some choice words, and is unceremoniously dumped into rough water…and emerges downstream with the White Arrow tangled in his clothing.

I’m a willing victim of Peter Jackson. When ever I read descriptions of old civilizations being approached, especially on boat with white stone architecture, my mind replays the scene from The Fellowship of the Ring where the boats go by the large alabaster statues of the Argonath, two warrior kings.

They passed eleven more bridges, or “gates” as Binabik called them, since they had for a thousand years or more marked the river entrance to Da’ai Chikiza.Each gate was named for an animal, the troll explained, and corresponded with the phases of the moon. One by one, the drifted beneath Foxes, Roosters, Hares and Doves, each one slightly different in shape, made of pearly moonstone or bright lapis, but all unmistakably the work of the same sublime and reverent hands. (pg 436)

As they moor the boat and climb out toward the city, Ingen Jegger shoots an arrow at them from the opposite bank, his men and he having caught up with them. He burns their boat and Binabik is hit with an arrow as they flee.

Chapter 28: Drums of IceHoly crap! Binabik shot with an arrow and the narrative takes another detour away from Simon to add more characters. Bad Tad, bad Tad!

In Hernystir, King Lluth is paid a visit by Guthwulf as King Elias’ emmisary. In front of Maegwin and Gwythinn (Lluth’s daughter and son) Guthwulf insults and threatens the King of the Hernystir.

In the Wran, Tiamak gets a sparrow from Morgenes, delayed because the bird was injured.

Count Eolair is still working on the Nabanni, speaking to Father Dinivan, trying to build alliances.

And we get to meet Jarnauga, an old bearded and tattooed man whom Morgenes received a sparrow from in Chapter 7 (as Pryrates was spying on him). Undoubtedly, he too is a member of the League of the Scroll. He had been watching Stormspike, but was awaiting riders he knew were coming to take him somewhere.

Chapter 29: Hunters and Hunted – And now, back to our heroes, into the scene depicted in the cover art (by Michael Whelan, according to my faded copy of the paperback) with Simon carrying an arrow-pierced Binabik (with Marya following behind) which occurs at the beginning of this final chapter of Part II.

Baron Heahferth and some of his men, in full armor, charge across the Sithi bridge, which doesn’t hold them and plunges them all into the river, providing Jegger the huntsman with no way across.

Simon carries Binabik as he and Marya flee, trying to get to the Stile which Geloë said would lead them to Naglimund. They get the arrow out of the troll, and eventually strap him to Qatanqa. They run until they are exhausted (but Simon still manages to tell Marya “I like you”). Then they see torches and hear hounds, and are convinced that Jegger has gotten between them and Naglimund.

Simon prepares a torch to fight with, and then a giant crashes through the woods. The giant smacks Simon around, then the hounds arrive followed by…Prince Josua, who kills the giant and takes them all to Naglimund.

Here is a link to the next part of the re-read.

These re-read posts and other essays have been collected into an eBook, available by clicking on the image below. Please consider supporting this blog by purchasing the eBook.

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Even after you read the re-read, I highly recommend reading the books and Tad’s words. Click on the covers below to find them on Amazon.

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