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I'm not writing.  I sent in my narniaexchange prompt (Woot!  Early!  I LOVE my prompt!  Thank you whoever you are!).  So, I'm sort of done writing for now.  Really.   I'm not working on TSG or Harold & Morgan.  I'm still too uncertain of being able to sustain a story given how readers dropped like flies at the end of TQSiT.  But, work is slow, the days are hot, and the evenings are a bit dull since I don't watch TV.  I'm using the treadmill and watching Merlin on netflix which is a total crack experience -- it's so cracky, I'm just not sure I can get by the embarrassment I keep projecting over the whole thing.

But as a result of the Narnia and feminism discussion on NFFR recently, a question came about what the heck was Aslan thinking in dumping Shasta off with Arsheesh the abusive fisherman.  Really, it is a total Dumbledore leaving Harry on the Dursley Huh sort of moment.  This is an idea I've had for a while and have even mentioned here a few times -- a retelling of The Horse and his Boy with the Trickster god of the Calormene pantheon.

So, The Horse, His Boy, the Rat, and the Trickster
An introductory procrastination by rthstewart
2,187 words

 




 Because it so puts my brother’s beak out of joint, sometimes I help Aslan.  Not that he really needs it of course.  But, Calormen is my country, not his, and the people, especially the slaves and peasants, certainly know me better than they know him.  Besides, the Lion of Narnia appreciates a good joke, he does. 

 
It was like this.  One night I was banging around away south.  My people are weak here and don’t have anything, which means I’m strong, if you follow, because faith in the Trickster is the only thing they do have.  A slave who leaves a bread crumb has far more power than some great Tarkaan lord giving me a plate of gold.  Not that he would.  He gives all his gold to my big brother, Tash. 

 

So, the Tarkaans mock me, and when they don’t give me my due, and when they abuse the people who worship me, well, I’m not above a bit of fun at the expense of the great and powerful.  And that’s really what this story is about. 

 

It was late and I was hopping fence to fence, chasing away the foxes and collecting the offerings my people leave – the shriveled root, the kernel, the flower.  For these folk, my folk, what they give, I return to them, three-fold, as the saying goes.  So, the shriveled root becomes a whole onion, a kernel becomes an ear of corn or a sheaf of wheat, the flower turns to a cup of honey.  The hen will lay another egg, the goat gives sweeter milk, and the bread rises a little more in the pan.  I don’t ask for much.  My people don’t have much and what I give in return eases their hard lives, just a little.

 

So, my offerings collected and blessings dispensed, I was sitting on the fence, wondering if I should go bother the dreams of a fisherman I don’t like.  He never gives me so much as a fish head. 

 

When, speaking of fish and what the cat dragged in, who should drop out of a tree but the Lion of the North.  He wasn’t a lion down here.  He was cat.  A really large cat.  Which was still a problem since I was a rat at the moment.   

 

“Hullo, Aslan.”

 

“Trickster.” 

 

It’s really odd hearing him talk all deep and formal when he’s not a Lion. 

 

I edged away from the cat and jumped on to the hindquarters of a donkey who had sidled up to the fence.  With a nudge from me, the jenny lazily swatted her tail in the direction of cat.  I scratched her withers in return.

 

Aslan wanted me to ask him why he was here.  I wasn’t going to.  There was only reason why he would be here, so far from his own lands and the creatures who worshiped him. 

 

I kept scratching the jenny.  The cat flicked away a fly – and it wasn’t even one I sent.

 

“Would you like to hear about a joke?”

 

Oh he knows how to get my attention, that clever cat. 

 

“What’s in it for me?”

 

“A role in playing the joke.”

 

“Who is being pranked?” 

 

“The Tisroc.  One of his sons.  Other powerful Tarkaans.”

 

I couldn’t help it.  My whiskers twitched.  That Lion is such a bastard.  Any prank on the Tisroc, his sons, and their great Lords always pisses off Tash.  Which just makes me do it more.  Aslan knows this.

 

“Tell me the joke.”

 

So the Lion told me a tale.  He said there was a great King in the North whose money and infant son had been stolen by one Lord, only to be stolen away by another Lord.  The Prince was raised in Calormen as a poor servant, never knowing who he was.  One day, the Prince stole a great Tarkaan Lord’s horse, who was really a Talking Horse of Narnia.  (I loved that part).  Then, a young Tarkheena, promised to another great Tarkaan Lord, she finds a Talking Horse of Narnia too, and gives everyone the slip and meets up with the Prince who doesn’t know he’s a Prince and looks like a slave. 

 

It gets even more complicated once they get to Tashbaan and I could tell Aslan hadn’t thought through this part of his joke yet.  There’s a really angry Calormene Prince (Aslan didn’t say who, but I could guess and it really sweetened the story for me, that’s for sure).  The Calormene Prince wants to marry a Queen of the North, she’s not interested and so she and her brother need to secretly escape Tashbaan.  Somehow, the Northern Prince needed to get mixed up with his twin brother.  And that Tarkheena, she gets found out but escapes with information about a secret invasion.  Then she and the Prince who doesn’t know he’s a Prince raise the alarm and there’s a big battle. 

 

I don’t care much about battles so I stopped paying attention.  My people are always fodder in war and they always lose the few things they do have.  Besides, war is boring and loud and really I admire the clever ones who get out of a scrape without killing or burning anything.

 

But the rest of the story.  Well, frankly, I was hard pressed to see the Lion pulling it all off, especially with all those tricks and disguises, and plots and lucky chances.  And in Calormen, too.  I could see why he came to me.  Oh, Aslan could do it on his own, sure.  But, it’s more fun when two play and the Lion of Narnia has a sense of humour, and really, he can set the goal and let me take care of the details.  It’s why I like him. 

 

Except when he eats me.  That hurts.

 

And, pranking the Tisroc, his sons, and the Great Lords?  Colour me entertained. 

 

“I’m in,” I told Aslan, just as he was explaining more about the politics of his Northern lands.  Boring.  “But, three conditions.”

 

The cat growled.  He doesn’t like it when others dictate terms. The jenny, at my urging, took a step further away.  I didn’t want to get eaten.  Again.

 

“I claim the Tarkheena as my own and I get to have some fun with her and your Northern Prince.”

 

“Fun?” the cat repeated.  It’s odd hearing sarcasm from a cat’s mouth.

 

“I know you’re going to have them get married and rule wisely and well and all that.  But to get them there, I want to do something fun with them first.  Make them earn it again.  Send them off on a mad adventure before they get too old and boring and married.”  Something with pirates and mistaken identities and more disguises.  Really, I just love disguises.  There would be wild misunderstandings, too.  The sorts of things humans could resolve in a minute if they ever talked properly to one another.  Which they never, ever do. 

 

“I will entertain that proposal,” the Lion agreed.

 

Fair enough.  He was going to a lot of trouble for this caper.  He didn’t want me to upstage that.  We’d work it out when the time was right.

 

“As for you claiming the Tarkheena, she will give her allegiance to me first.”

 

I rolled my beady rat eyes at the cat.  Of course she would go to Aslan first.  “But she’s a Calormene, and always will be, cat.  It will always be in her blood and heart, and a girl this clever I want looking to me, not my kin.”

 

Aslan considered it but really, whether he agreed or not, you could put a Tarkheena in the North, but you’d never get the Tarkheena out of her.  Not completely.  And why would you want to? 

 

“Very well, Trickster.  I agree to your modest terms.  What is your third?”

 

“The Calormene hothead Prince?  I want some role in the punishment you give him."

 

It’s pretty funny when a cat looks gobsmacked. 

 

The jenny turned and looked at me so I scratched her back again, an idea already forming.  Aslan would agree to this condition.  He knows I am a lot more creative than he is when it comes to public humiliation.

 

“I agree,” the cat said. 

 

We weren’t going to shake on it.  I didn’t want to get that close to him. 

 

To business.  The best pranks required a lot of planning.

 

“So when do we start?  You need to get the infant down here.  When’s he coming?”

 

“Tomorrow.  I will bring him here, to the beach, by boat,” the cat said.

 

Come to think of it, there was a story in Calormene about a great Prince stolen away as an infant, hidden in a boat, and raised by barbarian wolves in the North.  This was a funny retelling of that old fable.

 

“So who is going to find him and raise the boy?” 

 

“The fisherman, Arsheesh.”

 

I stared at the cat.  He stared back and I heard a threatening growl.  I didn’t care.  He was crazy and I was angry. 

 

“My brother’s feathered balls!  You vicious, stupid fleabag!  You can’t just deposit an infant with Arsheesh!”

 

The cat’s growl got louder. 

 

“Arsheesh is awful.  He’s mean, he drinks too much, and he’ll work the boy to death.  He’s the worse sort of human, Aslan.  You don’t want him there.  Pick someone else.”

 

The cat flicked his tail irritably.  “But if the boy is happy, he will not run away.”

 

Oh.  Right.  There was that.

 

Still, the cat was being stubborn.  I didn’t like Arsheesh since he withheld what was due me, but even so, Aslan didn’t know the man the way I did. 

 

“Aslan, I know you don’t deal with humans much.  They aren’t like your Trees and your other Narnians.”  Reptiles didn’t raise their offspring at all.  Most of Aslan’s Beasts were only with their parents for a season, or maybe a few years.  “I know other folk who would give a child a proper home.  When the time comes, we can work something out to get the boy to leave.”  Prophetic dream, maybe.  We were both good at those.

 

“It is Arsheesh,” Aslan said, and there was no arguing with him.  Stupid cat.  He’d just eat me and then do it all on his own, and it would work, but it would be a giant cock up and I’d miss out on the pranking. 

 

“Fine,” I muttered.  Really, sometimes I wondered if the Calormenes were right in calling Aslan a fiend.  This was so stupidly unnecessary, it was almost cruel. 

 

I would watch out for the boy; I could mete punishment and misfortune on Arsheesh when he was too harsh – but not so much for him to think the boy bore a curse. 

 

I admit a lot of the fun of this prank had disappeared.  I know what vicious humans would do to those who were weak and small.  So maybe the Prince had good blood from kind people, but a cruel master could turn the sweetest person sour and mean.  That wasn’t the sort of thing a Lion would think of – how what you knew when you were young could taint you later.  He’d want a good King for his Northern land, not a tyrant who had learned to enjoy pain and suffering because he’d suffered it at the hand of a brutal Calormene fisherman.

 

This meant I had to stay involved.  The baby Prince would need my aid. 

 

I started ticking off on my paws what would need to be done as Aslan, curse him, had figured I would.  They would need a goat for milk and there was a good girl across the field I was fond of.  She’d been raped by a passing bandit, had a child herself, and would gladly give her breast to an orphaned babe. 

 

“Are we concluded?” Aslan asked. 

 

If I had shoulders, I would have shrugged.  “Yes.”  I had a long night and day of work ahead of me.  Really, just dumping an infant in a fisherman’s cot was mad.  Arsheesh would try to pass off the child first, too, which meant I’d have to get the good people who want to help to go against their nature and refuse.  That would be hard. 

 

I gave the jenny another scratch.  “I’ll have Arsheesh down at the beach tomorrow evening.”

 

The man slept like the dead.  I’d probably need biting flies, mice chewing on his hair, and scratching fleas.  Torturing Arsheesh made me feel better.  “You’ll help me, darling?” I asked the jenny.

 

The donkey huffed her agreement.  She would plant herself at Arsheesh’s hut and bray all night for another scratch on the withers. 

 

“Thank you,” Aslan said.  And he meant it.  I still felt bitter about it, though.

 

“Does this mean you won’t eat me?” I asked.

 

The cat jumped back up on to a high branch of the overhanging tree.  It was the sort of leap no other cat could have made save the Lion. 

 

“Not this time, Trickster.” 

Comments

( 52 comments — Leave a comment )
elliemurasaki
Aug. 5th, 2010 05:57 pm (UTC)
rthstewart
Aug. 6th, 2010 01:08 am (UTC)
Thank you!!!
autumnia
Aug. 5th, 2010 06:08 pm (UTC)
*Sees a rth post. Glances at it. Sees there is FIC involved. Drops current work project and proceeds to read. Stops after the first two paragraphs because she realizes this may possibly involve the usual rth-fic-notetaking for a review....*

Ohhhhhhhh... I Must. Read. This. I must also find time to do so. Which means I'm determined to finish my work project first and came back to enjoy as a reward. But I am happy to see you writing, rth!
l_a_r_m
Aug. 5th, 2010 06:10 pm (UTC)
BRILLIANT BEYOND BRILLIANT.

OMG I love you! This was so awesome and you were so right, Aslan is SO being Dumbledore right now! LOLZ a cat! HE IS TOTALLY MINERVA MCGONAGALL I LOVE IT. This was completely wonderful, I love the way the Trickster fights for his people! Makes their lives just a little bit easier! Works out all the details for Aslan's game! BRILLIANT BRILLIANT BRILLIANT. I adore the Trickster's voice, and love the characterization of Arsheesh -- not even a fish head! OMG, Vernon Dursley. GIVE HARRY AN ICE POP, DAMNIT! Oh poor Shasta!

Faaaabulous. Oh my friend, you never cease to surprise and amaze me. <3
rthstewart
Aug. 6th, 2010 01:12 am (UTC)
I totally did not realize the cat/McGonagall connection. It's the first time I've ever done First Person pov, so I'm glad it worked for you!! It is totally a Dumbledore. And... I've decided that reason Aslan gives Aravis those 5 claw marks because the Trickster is pissed that one of his people, that servant girl, gets whipped. So he wants Aslan to do it. Aslan is all, no eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth, and the Trickster will have none of it. He like Aravis, but he's angry!
(Anonymous)
Aug. 5th, 2010 06:17 pm (UTC)
SO awesome. OMG. I love love love everything in this - of course the Trickster, and the way he and Aslan speak, and the worldbuilding, and the bit about Aravis....loveeeeee it!


It’s really odd hearing him talk all deep and formal when he’s not a Lion.

I, um, thought of Cas. Sorry!


So maybe the Prince had good blood from kind people, but a cruel master could turn the sweetest person sour and mean. That wasn’t the sort of thing a Lion would think of – how what you knew when you were young could taint you later. He’d want a good King for his Northern land, not a tyrant who had learned to enjoy pain and suffering because he’d suffered it at the hand of a brutal Calormene fisherman.
I love this. Aslan is great and all, but I love the Trickster being needed to help him out, make his plan a success.

metonomia
Aug. 5th, 2010 06:18 pm (UTC)
That was me! Forgot to log in.
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makinhistory
Aug. 5th, 2010 06:37 pm (UTC)
This story made me LOL and go a little *flail*! Cats looking gobsmacked and non-lion Aslan - love all around.

But oh, Merlin. What a painfully amusing waste of time. It's a guilty pleasure of mine; most of the time I sit there going "...NO." :)
rthstewart
Aug. 6th, 2010 01:20 am (UTC)
Thanks! I've written Aslan as a cat a couple of times. It's a bit more manageable and less noticeable. And Merlin is hilarious. I do feel far too much empathy for the actors. complete crack
autumnia
Aug. 5th, 2010 08:26 pm (UTC)
Now that I have read...

Ohhhh... LOVED this! I'm quite fond of the Trickster you wrote here, a little different from bedlamsbard's characterization of him in her crossovers. He's so much more... human, for lack of a better word, than either Aslan or Tash it seems. He falls somewhere in the middle where people can identify with him more. He doesn't get all the gold like Tash, nor all the glory like Aslan; his followers are the poor, who offer what they can barely afford to spare.

Cat eat Rat. Oh, poor Trickster. That's what happens when you take this shape and He takes the other. The conversation between the two really is a lot like the one between Albus and Minerva: baby, Animagus, and all.

I think my favorite part is how the Trickster protests the Lion's decision to put Cor with Arsheesh. With such a parental figure as that selfish fisherman, Cor will grow up to know how the other half lives, and being royalty will not inflate his head nor his ego. That's why Aslan chose Arsheesh, I assume. And with the Trickster looking out for Cor, the Lion knows things will turn out all right.
rthstewart
Aug. 6th, 2010 01:37 am (UTC)
I've not read any of Bed's work where there actually was a Trickster -- only that there was a mention of him in a 7? god pantheon in that neighboring country whose name I always forget. The realization that it is a total Dumbledore moment did not hit me until yesterday. I'd been thinking about this scene for a long time and when Animus mentioned on NFFR the oddity of Arsheesh being Aslan's chosen guardian, I decided to waste a few hours not writing. As you know, I take a benevolent view of Aslan, so this is perhaps a bit harsher of a take than I'd normally do.

But, it's interesting to explore and yes, there's the idea of Shasta learning humility, probably being better in mending/patching/understanding diplomacy and the whole baby in the bullrushes too.
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ilysia_039
Aug. 5th, 2010 10:22 pm (UTC)
*flails*

I. Love. This. Really. This is brilliant and clever and funny and the very best sort of world-building. The absolute best. What you've done in just a little over 2000 words to the Calormene pantheon is fantastic. The Trickster is just perfect; he's such a conflict of amusement and serious thought, jokes and caring and needling away the Tisroc because he knows Tash'll hate it. God, what I wouldn't do to be a fly on the wall when Tash finds out just how deeply his brother was involved with the Lion from up North.

And Aslan here is just as great. It's not the normal picture we get of Aslan, which makes it interesting and builds the world like BAM. Because he's a cat in Calormen, and is sarcastic, and clearly doesn't always think things through the way the Trickster does, maybe because the Trickster is a bit less... divine?

In any case, this is brilliant and I love it. *fan-girl squee*
rthstewart
Aug. 6th, 2010 02:04 am (UTC)
Awww. thank you! God, what I wouldn't do to be a fly on the wall when Tash finds out just how deeply his brother was involved with the Lion from up North.
To whit,
"Oh by Zalindreh's six tits," I muttered. "Eaten again."

Aslan is a little less benevolently divine than how I normally portray him. And the Trickster is quite the Bugs Bunny/Hermes/Loki/Pap Legba sort. Divine but he's got a malicious streak too.
min023
Aug. 5th, 2010 10:26 pm (UTC)
Squeee! I promise to leave some better comments when I'm not going to be late to school/work (mum's taxi, and all that), but if this is 'not writing', then yes please, I'll have some more of that! : )
rthstewart
Aug. 6th, 2010 02:05 am (UTC)
DRive like the wind!
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animus_wyrmis
Aug. 6th, 2010 04:05 am (UTC)
OMG TRICKSTER.

I love this. I really like that this is all planned out from the start, that it is something of a joke, and that it takes the Trickster to point out the little things like UM ARSHEESH.

But if the boy is happy, he will not run away
OH. If he is unhappy, he will abandon his home and his gods and betray the army of the Tisroc. OH.
rthstewart
Aug. 6th, 2010 12:54 pm (UTC)
I started playing with the Trickster in TQSiT because there is a character with what might be viewed as precognitive abilities and I liked the idea that others speculate as to its source -- God, Saint Agnes, intuitive skill at Jungian analysis,, Aunt Nancy (an American slave hybridization of the West African folklore Trickster Anansi, the spider), and Papa Legba, another Trickster, a loa of the Vodou. From there, it occurred to me that the whole of HHB could be seen as one giant joke of mistaken identities, changes, disguises, and guile over might. The Trickster was often worshiped by the poor and downtrodden as a way to "get back" at his oppressors without them ever knowing it. All perfectly fitting with HHB and I thought were I to ever try to tackle that part of the Chronicles, it would be a retelling of it with added Trickster.

The comments on NFFR board brought that all back, including your own about HEAD DESK Aslan and Arsheesh and I decided, since I wasn't writing anyway, to pull this out. The OMG it's a total Dumbledore was a relatively late insight undoubtedly influenced by some of the AU HP out there.

I had liked the idea that in exchange for his help, the Trickster was going to be able to take Cor and Aravis out for one more spin when then are older so I could play with my favorite formula -- boy and girl take a trip, boy and girl exchange lots of witty banter that is really UST, boy and girl save the world/galaxy/country/day, boy and girl do the deed.

The idea of the Trickster actually claiming Aravis is one that I mentioned to you when we were doing the memes about talking about stories we'd never written -- these Northern Queens with Lucy, Aravis, and Susan.

Errr, yeah, stopping now, though I did have a brain wave that the Trickster is involved in those 5 claw marks because the servant girl is one of his people -- terrified of a cruel master, abused, and truly trapped. He's disappointed in Aravis and angry, he wants to teach her a lesson, and he wants an eye for an eye. I take a more pretty benevolent view of Aslan than what you see on most of the LJ communities -- and the claw marks aren't one I can easily reconcile. Of course, it's not as if the Trickster can make Aslan do anything but... well that's not insurmountable.

Stopping now. Really.
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(Anonymous)
Aug. 6th, 2010 02:49 pm (UTC)
Anon but loyal
Hello,

I was sorry to read that you lost a large number of readers towards the end of TSG -- that's where I picked it up and enjoyed it immensely. Following a referral from cobweb_diamond I began reading the story and thoroughly enjoyed it. I haven't read the Narnia books in at least ten years but your story made me consider picking them up again to reconsider my initial readings as a young adult. The Catholic overtones were apparent then, but I'm sure a new reading would bring them through and their implications on CS Lewis's work in a much different vein. I haven't read anything of his but Screwtape in years.

To be clear, your work was fantastic as a stand alone; it read clear and with it's own narrative even with my sparing knowledge of the original. The Franciscan view of science v. theology was well drawn, and the story wasn't lacking suspense, nor did it flatline, through any of the stories. It was clearly paced, thought out in its entirety, and I was looking forward to where it was building. I do hope you continue. But, if not, enjoy whatever you decide to write!

Regards,

Clue
rthstewart
Aug. 7th, 2010 04:19 am (UTC)
Re: Anon but loyal
Thank you so much for de-lurking, Clue. I greatly appreciate hearing from folks and I truly value what you say. I had posted here before, during the writing of TQSiT, though it's more relevant in Part 1, that the Franciscan world view pops in numerous places. I was really interested in showing Digory (and Polly) as trying to make their Narnia experience relevant and important in this world -- they are very much role models to the Pevensies. In Digory's case, he's working on a line of thought regarding environmental stewardship that is very prevalent in the Franciscan magazine that arrives in my home periodically. In honor of Darwin's birth last year, and the prevalent creationist views in the Narnia fandom, I really wanted Richard Russell to be a scientist and man of faith.

So thank you. I greatly appreciate it.
kloves_books
Aug. 6th, 2010 06:18 pm (UTC)
Hey, I just discovered this site the other day and have read 6 of your pieces. PLEASE tell me that part 3 of TSG is NOT on permanent hiatus, because I REALLY want to read it after that end to TQSiT. Please?
rthstewart
Aug. 7th, 2010 04:27 am (UTC)
Well thank you and welcome! How did you find them? If you are so inclined, I'd love to hear what you read and what you thought of it. Thank you very, very much. It means the world to me when people weigh in and I had no idea they were reading or how they found it.

I'm not working on Part 3 or Harold and Morgan -- well that last isn't strictly true. I tinkered with some smutty bits and more dialog in Part 3 and for H&M I started looking at the history of the Rothschild, DuPont, and de Medici families as models for Lone Island banking clans -- these families built and maintained their wealth and empires in part by their patriarchs marrying children to first and second cousins. The houses of Stanleh and Sterns are both very corrupt and the House of Meryl needs to grow through marriage and it's run by a woman. And that Narnia should be very worried about anyone lending money to Calormen or Telmar. And I decided that writing about taxes is really boring. And I think Princess Even More Dim would make an appearance. If I were writing, which I'm not.
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keeperofqkeys
Aug. 6th, 2010 07:41 pm (UTC)
I do so hope you keep writing. You have loyal readers. It doesn't matter how many of us there are, you still have us! Please don't let us down by giving up, it would make me terribly sad.

I did enjoy this, even if it's been nigh on forever since I last read HHB. It wasn't particularly one of my favorite books from the series.

I'll make sacrificial offerings of fine wine, if that's what it's going to take to get you to continue, btw ;-).
rthstewart
Aug. 7th, 2010 04:28 am (UTC)
Funny you should mention wine... keep watching this space for when the fic exchange goes up.

And thank you for the continuing support. I do appreciate it. See above about H&M.
anastigmatfic
Aug. 7th, 2010 12:43 pm (UTC)
♥♥♥♥♥ TRICKSTERS.

You know me and tricksters. Clever, conniving, tricksy Tricksters. This is brilliant, and your Trickster is just the right blend of benevolence and mischief. Especially loved the aside about why he dislikes war -- because he would, wouldn't he, when his people suffer the most from it?

Also -- "my brother's feathered balls." Hah. Reminds me of the Tiger's Balls story retold in American Gods.
rthstewart
Aug. 8th, 2010 01:46 am (UTC)
You are here! You read it! I adore you! Yes, I think that about covers it!!
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intrikate88
Aug. 7th, 2010 07:33 pm (UTC)
♥ ♥ ♥

Different style of writing for a different perspective this time, and you pulled it off well. I like the approach Aslan took, and the way the Trickster sees the world and his place in it. Reminds me a bit of Neil Gaiman's Anasi Boys.
rthstewart
Aug. 8th, 2010 01:47 am (UTC)
Thanks, my friend! The first person isn't something I've ever done before, so it was sort of an experiment. But this came really easily. I wish everything else was so quick!
(Anonymous)
Aug. 9th, 2010 05:18 am (UTC)
Amazing job on this one! I'm glad to see that Aslan has a sense of humor! Maybe he get's it from his father. "Say Aslan want to hear a joke? It's about these kids and some rings... hilarious."

One thing that's really getting me to me is wouldn't Shasta/Cor know he's not really Calormen? I mean it's only so much tan you can get right? Let me stop there because it will turn into 100 questions.

I hope to see some more not writing from your soon!
x.

rthstewart
Aug. 9th, 2010 06:13 pm (UTC)
It's another anonymous reader! I love you folks! I see there being a lot of humor in Aslan -- the first joke in TMN, the way he teases Trumpkin in PC, and so forth. While I do not write as Christian allegory (obviously -- we've got an ambiguous pantheon even as presented here), as a post of a few weeks ago shows regarding biblical passages I was called upon to proclaim at Mass, I see nothing contradictory in the divine (and quasi-divine of Narnia) having a sense of humor. I know s/he is making fun of me -- it actually happened again this last weekend with my notes to Lectors including a quote from CS Lewis and the gospel reading concluding with a passage I feel wholly encapsulates the vision I had of part 3: "Much will be required of the person entrusted with much,
and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more.”

As for Shasta/Cor being unaware of his background, I suppose he's probably never seen his reflection. People certainly will have remarked upon his fair complexion, even beneath the dirt and tan. Arsheesh would certainly lie to him. And perhaps, for all Shasta knows, there are lighter skinned Calormenes -- and there likely are -- I see it as a big and mixed sort of place with variations in skin tones. This is actually an interesting issue of whether the society would, as whole, "favor" darker or lighter skinned persons --good world-buidling, cultural possibilities there. Perhaps men of the warrior classes would be favored for their darker complexions for it would show they were out fighting for glory under the sun, whereas lighter skinned would be favored in women?
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(Anonymous)
Aug. 10th, 2010 01:55 am (UTC)
Trickster
If the trickster made you do this, I hope he messes with you more! :)

AEE
rthstewart
Aug. 10th, 2010 01:02 pm (UTC)
Re: Trickster
Nice to see you again, AEE!
wingedflight21
Aug. 10th, 2010 04:06 am (UTC)
Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant! And you do realize that with the mention of the adventure involving pirates and misunderstandings and disguises, I reeeeaaaallly want to hear about that now!

(Pst. And just take a look at all the reviews you've gotten already for this! See, people still love your writing!)
min023
Aug. 10th, 2010 08:46 am (UTC)
Yep, just what I was thinking. Must have read my mind : )
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(Anonymous)
Aug. 17th, 2010 05:29 pm (UTC)
still eagerly awaiting
TSG and TQSiT are one of the very few Narnia stories I've enjoyed. TSG/TQSiT in particular because of the depth you've provided for the reader, and the research material (AKA wikipedia) you've made me read to ease my curiosity.

Your characterization of Peter and Susan are pretty much my standards now for any post-TLWW stuff. I'd especially like to see how you tackle the version of Susan that Lewis gives through Lucy (nylons, lipstick, and parties) with your own POV. I've never felt comfortable with that version.

Over & out,
Pie
( 52 comments — Leave a comment )

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