Monday, June 25, 2012


I've been somewhat lax in putting these up:

Capitulum Tertium Decimum

Capitulum Quartum Decimum

Capitulum Quintum Decimum

One more chapter to finish the Jolie arc, a couple more to finish the Siberian arc, and one chapter to finish the narrator's arc and the whole draft; it all moves quite quickly from here, since the Wolf-King has known what he was doing all along. I suspect, when time for revision starts, that these three chapters and the next will, directly or indirectly, force a considerable amount of reworking of the early chapters, beyond the obvious reworking that would need to be done, anyway.

I mentioned that the background music in my head was from Jordi Savall's version of Marcabru's song for the Iberian Crusades, Pax in Nomine Domini; I couldn't find that version online anywhere at the time, but I think this is it (I'm not currently at a computer that can see it, unfortunately, so it could be dancing Muppets for all I know; but this should be it if the description is right). Marcabru was a twelfth century Occitan troubadour; we know very little about him, but his songs have survived. This particular one, the most famous, is also called the "Vers del Lavador", because of its unusual image. If you know any Spanish you know that 'lavadora' is the word for 'washing machine' and a 'lavador' is someone who washes; obviously Marcabru predates washing machines, but the basic meaning is the same -- the lavador is the place on the river, or other body of water, where you would go to wash your clothes or to bathe. The song mocks French nobles for cowardice; they wash their bodies in the morning, so why do they not wash their souls? They should go to the washing-place, which is Spain, to defeat the infidel. Obviously, because of the striking imagery and the complexity of a song urging people to take up the sword to purify themselves, it's a song that admits of an extraordinary range of emotional presentation: it can be sung earnestly, or mockingly, or fiercely, or chillingly. One thing I like about Savall's version, and that makes it appropriate for Aegidius, is its slightly ironic but mostly mournful inexorability: one gets the sense that there is blood at the end, but that there is little if any choice.

And another song for the soundtrack, also Templar:


  1. Cat Hodge4:48 PM

    Ah, at last! Giles is thoroughly chilling in his complete competency. I have a guess as to what the historian will do that will save his life, though...

    And boy, those Muppets can sing. :)

  2. branemrys5:20 PM

    You'll definitely have to tell me what you have in mind when you see the end, so we can compare.

    I'm glad Giles's competency is coming across as a bit chilling; one of the difficulties of writing him is that his competency is preternatural -- he's a nightmare-monster, quite literally a nightmare-wolf, and can do in reality what monsters can do in nightmares. And there's always the danger of that coming across at some point as a bit much, or sliding into the ridiculous.

    And I am glad it was really the Savall piece!


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