The Final Calling: Progress Report Eight

Chapter Seven is now online.

Chapters One through Fourteen are paid for; Chapter Fifteen was about halfway, last I checked.

Chapters One through Fourteen are written, and I’ve just started Chapter Fifteen.

Chapter Eight will be posted on Wednesday, August 4th.

Guess that’s everything; we’re getting settled in here.

13 thoughts on “The Final Calling: Progress Report Eight

  1. Hanner is a very dangerous man, isn’t he? You can go pretty far in life being able to keep your focus when everyone else is panicking and being quick to take advantage of good opportunities.

    Luckily for everyone else, he doesn’t seem given to Vond-like ambition. But if he were, I sure wouldn’t stand in his way. Even though he’s lost all his warlock powers, I sure wouldn’t.

  2. Now I wish you’d done Dumery of the Dragon first—I’m curious to see how the Wizards’ Guild, the various Ethsharitic governments, and others react to the disclosure of an overt human/Great Dragon partnership. (Is “business partner with a dragon” now a school of Ethsharitic magic? I’d think the Guild would consider that more than enough power for one person to have, and they surely wouldn’t want Dumery meddling in politics.)

    I presume that even if the Wizards’ Guild knows exactly what’s going on, their attitude towards humanitarian intervention is “sucks to be you”. Perhaps the Council of Warlocks has enough money in their treasury to hire assistance, although they have other pressing demands on their purse, with their regular source of income suddenly cut off, and of course they don’t even know the ex-Called are still alive.

    On the other hand, the Wizards’ Guild may soon find a large number of powerful ex-warlocks who have shown a commitment to regulating other warlocks to be very useful—if they attune all warlocks in good standing to the Lumeth Source, they could agree to strict limits on how much power they draw in return for quickly swatting down Vond and any other warlocks who break the agreement.

  3. Well, you’re far enough ahead that if you’d just bump your daily goal up to 10 pages, you’d have plenty of time to finish Dumery before you need to do another Final Calling chapter. The mind control lasers say that’s perfectly feasible, and if you can’t trust mind control lasers, who can you trust?

  4. I wonder if this indicates that Dumery is completely immune, rather than just highly resistant to the Source, given that he had no problem flying to within 100 yards of where he thought the Source was.

  5. “And such there be, you will bear no malice for any actions I take upon them, to secure my home?”

    Is that a typo for “An such there be…”?

    I think it was stated somewhere near the end of Night of Madness that about one in a hundred people are incapable of becoming warlocks — maybe having a minor lesion in the part of the brain that warlockry affects? Near the beginning of Night of Madness there’s a scene from the POV of an old woman who was the only one in her village in Aldagmor who wasn’t turned into a warlock and called. Presumably, in the region right around the Source, everyone who could become a warlock did become one, but there were a few like that woman who couldn’t be made warlocks. And in The Blood of a Dragon, Dumery tried to apprentice himself to a warlock and was turned away, which could mean that he’s totally immune to being turned into a warlock, or could mean that he is (or was) a very low-powered warlock like Sterren (before Vond attuned him to the other source). I’m thinking he’s totally immune to warlockry; if he were just very low-powered when first turned into a warlock, like Sterren, then being near the Source for several weeks or months of each year for ten years would have, at a minimum, increased his power to a consciously noticable level, if not to high-powered levels resulting in his being called.

  6. I’d imagine the reason he was willing to get so close is much simpler; from high altitudes Aldagon could probably see a lot of people moving down there… ergo the assumption that people aren’t being “Called” anymore.

    It is a little strange that they arrive and Dumery is untroubled by the same proximity to the Source, but they feel it necessary to ask about the warlocks not being effected… I assume the intended question is something (in plain speech) along the lines of “is that what stopped the Calling.” It could be a little clearer what she’s asking, because it does sound a little like she’s randomly oblivious to the fact Dumery is doing the exact same thing she’s asking about.

    I assume Dumery is the first dragon-rider of Ethshar, that dragons of size enough to be ridden weren’t that common during the Great War.

  7. Dumery doesn’t know whether he’s totally immune or not, but assumes he can safely go anywhere there are humans. He’s tested his limits a little over the years, with Aldagon’s help.

    Still, I should probably make that clearer in the second draft. If I’d been writing from Dumery’s point of view it would be easy, but I didn’t want to switch.

    “And such there be” is to be consistent with The Blood of a Dragon, where Del Rey’s copy editors systematically changed every instance of that meaning of “an” to “and.” Yes, I know it’s wrong.

  8. Stars and Stones, I love dragon stuff. Hanner wins serious points for being ready to talk to Aldagon, I’m sure. I bet this goes a long way towards re-establishing his authority as Chairman with the ex-Warlocks.

    Dumery seems to have a good idea how the Guild operates, which implies some things about what he’s been through the last ten years. He’s also cynical enough to assume that magicians looking in via scrying spells won’t inform others to help out.

    Is this the first Ethshar novel to be so global in scope? We’ve got storylines in Ethshar of the Spices, Vond, Aldagmor, and Ethshar of the Rocks. I guess Night of Madness had some similar characteristics. Interesting how different a book about a phenomena is, compared to character-driven plots.

    Very illuminating, I think we’ve got more hints about the way the world works in the first few chapters here than in whole books before. Here’s hoping for more on theurgy and sorcery, the poor unattended subjects.

    And you gotta wonder what kinds of tricks Dumery has picked up so far. You can see him operating like Gresh, a bit. If he’s already selling blood, then he’s got to have the money.

  9. Very good chapter! If I recall correctly a fair number of early Warlocks had the Spell of the Spinning Coin used on them before they were called, that is how the Guild knew that they were not dead, just stopped, because the coins stopped spinning but didn’t fall over. That being the case the ones who survived the pit and escaped bow have coins spinning just fine, and those who escaped bu were injured have coins that spin more slowly and might wobble a bit of their injuries are life threatening. Surely at least a few Warlocks had friends who were Wizards? Failing that most of them had families and such other friends who will wish to aid them now that they are unfrozen. It won’t be easy or instant help, but I think help in many forms will be on the way soon if it is not already in progress.

    I presume next we learn more about Vond and his resumption of authority? Or do we get another viewpoint back in one of the Three Ethshar’s or possibly Dwomor? In some ways this book is kind of turning into a who’s who of Ethshar, we have seen several characters pop up from different novels now. I certainly don’t mind, I always like it when things tie together like the real world does. Will the witch from Blood of a Dragon be showing up as well? The Warlock she was helping is amongst the Called somewhere, assuming he is alive. They seem to have formed a bond of a sort and it might reassert itself now that he is unfrozen in time.

  10. I’m looking forward to seeing something of Adar Dagon’s son and Teneria of Fishertown… though I assume that they’ll show up sooner or later. Teneria’s been playing with warlocks for almost 10 years and Adar seems too compelling a lose end not to do *something* to tie off or build on (fun fact, Teneria’s now 2 years older than Adar was when he was Called).

    I’d argue the book is still about characters, just characters being driven by phenomena rather than their own lives. Both Spell of the Black Dagger and even moreso Night of Madness had some of these traits, but one of the novel things (for Ethshar) about this book is that it involves the aftermath of an event that literally brought in threads from across the World for 34 years and is now spitting them out in a big wad. I’d almost be surprised if this book doesn’t spit out at least one character that come with good story ideas set back in the 5220’s unless there are just that many characters that have already been written about being woven in.

  11. And on the way to Ethshar of the Spices they’ll have to stop at The Inn By the Bridge and meet Valdor. Iridith the Flyer will just happen to be at the Inn as well….

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