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From: "Roy C. Lackey" <rclackey@stic.net>
Subject: (urth) Re: Count Dorcas
Date: Sun, 3 Oct 1999 00:26:05 

My Dorcas post was more a case of speculating in public than anything else.
I don't see any good reason, in the context of TBOTNS, for Dorcas to be a
vampire, either, and I am certainly open to any better explanations for all
the bat business. My main point was that the circumstances of her life,
death, and rebirth are mysteries still to be explained and that, taken
together, there is enough evidence in the text to suggest that Dorcas may
not be the Little Miss Innocence she seems. And that doesn't count sleeping
with her grandson, of which she was ignorant, or with Jolenta, of which she
wasn't, if she did.

As I said, I knew this wasn't going to go over well. I will note, however,
that I did say:

>>"There is not enough direct evidence in the text for me to assert that
Dorcas was a vampire or that she and/or her husband were somehow involved in
the death of a baby, but the subject of bats comes up too often to be
dismissed out of hand and the death of Jolenta is suspect, as is the timing
of Caron's."<<

Aside from differences of opinion and cultural relativism, Jim Henley wrote:

>>Perhaps he is calling attention to Agia's lies about Dorcas' age.<<

She wasn't lying. Sev himself thought she was 18 or 19.

>>As for Jolenta falling down a well, she is already, IIRC, sick.<<

No, she wasn't sick until after the "bat bite"; before that she was just
sore from being beaten by Talos's cane and was in no danger of dying. It
wasn't the wound that sickened her, it was acute anemia. (Is that the proper
euphemism for losing a lot of blood in a short time?) <g>

>>It's all she can manage to avoid upsetting Sev by mentioning her husband

She did mention her husband, as I said, just not in the context of finding
out what she can of her old life. And she wasn't concerned about sparing
Sev's feelings. It was their last conversation, the oral version of the Dear
John letter; she was leaving him, for good.

>>Frankly, her finding him is one of the two things in
the series that most strains my credulity, but it's not beyond the realm
that, as I suggested above, the closer Dorcas got to the abandoned quarter
the more memories returned, and when she came back to or staked out her old
house, Caron was still there.<<

You are mistaken. Caron didn't live there. Their old home/shop was two-days
travel downriver from the inhabited parts of Nessus. The boatman lived
"...in a loft now. A man I knew years before, though that was years after
Cas was gone, he lets me sleep there." (I, XXII) The quarters were,
apparently, near the Citadel, which is where Sev first met him, the first
day of the novel (last page, chapter II). The Citadel is within sight of the
Botanical Gardens. So that should relieve you of one of the two gnats.

> She was still a child when she died, as far as I am concerned

Because that is how we regard these things in the West at the close of the
second millenium AD.<<

No, actually it has more to do with the fact that I have a child at least
ten years older than Dorcas. It's a function of age, I guess.

>>BTW, the above probably seems like a vehement reaction to something you
gave a lot of thought to and spent a lot of time on. Let me just say that I
appreciate very much the opportunity to be vehement.<<

You're welcome.


*More Wolfe info & archive of this list at http://www.urth.net/urth/

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