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Darkover 1998

Hi all,

Darkover was WONDERFUL! It was great getting to meet so many of you and, of course, getting Katherine to join us for dinner, answer numberous questions, divulge so many details and read from KKB was super!

Alas, there are a lot of details I can't share...and neither can anyone else. (I think that's probably already been posted, but I haven't read any posts yet). Katherine shared a few things she didn't reveal at Westercon, but she still kept back a couple things she shared at Westercon. And I think I've connected a few details from both that suggest interesting things in KKB.

Enough teasing! On to the things I CAN share. I promised a long (have I ever written anything short? ), detailed report and I will deliver. But I'm pretty tired tonight so I can't promise to recall every single detail...if you ask the right questions you might get a few more answers.

I barely arrived in time for Katherine's first panel Friday. After the panel, Jennifer, Sianny, Brom, several others, and I kind of cornered Katherine in the hallway for a few questions....which became an hour and fifteen minute discussion! We continued the discussion during dinner and after she read from Bride.

The bad news is that we probably won't get KKB until May, 2000. Katherine had to do some revising which involved including an assassination attempt early in the book. (She said that much publically...the details about that attempt came later). She said that these changes necessitated a few minor changes in Chapter 1 of Bride. I think one of the those changes is the revelation that Azim is training Araxie in the Deryni arts. I don't remember that from Westercon. Do you, Melissa? Azim will very important in Bride. ZIP!

The Haldana Neckace, Orin's Rings, the Protocols of Orin, and Evaine and Joram's texts won't appear in KKB...but Katherine said they would probably reappear sometime. I asked where they were and if they could be hidden at St. Neot's, but I didn't get any answers. I didn't get any answers on reopening St. Neot's either.

Katherine says there is no adultery involved with Donal and Alyce. "It's an Uthyr and Igraine kind of thing...Donal substitutes at the last minute and Alyce doesn't know anything about it until Alaric's Naming ceremony. So neither she nor Alaric are guilty of anything." (That's pretty close to her exact words). She said she has to write Childe Morgan (which may not be a trilogy...depends how it develops) before she writes AfterBride because the way she handles Alaric's parentage will effect what happens in AfterBride....since Alaric will probably discover his heritage in that book. She said Brion needed a "Deryni Protector" as several other Haldane kings did, because the CC was no longer taking care of things like the Empowerment Rituals.

That led to the question of the CC's deterioration. Katherine admitted that the issue of the CC's changes really needs to be addressed...perhaps in Childe Morgan, although she thinks the roots of those changes extend back to the events of 948. I asked about Council Exit Procedures...what kept Rhydon (Pre-Coram) from revealing Arilan's Deryniness after he left the CC? She said apparently those CC oaths are binding even after a person leaves the Council...something obviously kept him quiet. She also said that Lewys ap Norfall's struggle with the Council and subsequent disappearance might be connected the Donal-Alyce situation or part of what necessitated that. (I had suggested that strange unpleasant fates seem to befall those like Lewys and Rolf MacPhereson who defy the CC and maybe fear of that kept Rhydon silent).

We talked quite a bit about the CC and she admitted there could be a secret circle within the CC because obviously they aren't sharing everything and some folks seem to know certain things that others don't. I asked if Coram was involved in answer, just a smile. She said this group probably centered on the de Courcy family, who kept their Deryniness secret until Jorian. Which leads me to wonder...Could Coram be a de Courcy? Suppose Jorian was his brother or cousin? That would strengthen his determination to improve living conditions for the Deryni in Gwynedd. (That's my speculation and something that came to me too late to ask Katherine this time...a question for the next Con, perhaps? )

Is Brother Theo a de Courcy too, then? I didn't think of that until just now. But I did ask if Bro. Theo was one person, a group, or a series of individuals. Katherine's answer "Brother Theo is Rob's construct. You'll have to ask him about that." So Rob, the ball is in your court! But you KNOW we aren't going to let the issue drop.

Speaking of issues (We're back to that word again, aren't we? ), I did try to press her about Rhidian and Kelson. All Katherine will say is that "it isn't addressed in KKB." Neither is the question of the stranger on the beach at the end of QSFC. She kind of smiled when I suggested the Rhidian issue (continuing the pun begun on Friday night) might appear in AfterBride, so I don't think that's a dead issue. :::giggle::: Sorry! I couldn't resist. What can I say? I get silly when I'm tired sometimes.

While we're on the subject of babies, I asked Celia's questions about merasha's effect on pregnant women. She said a pregnant Deryni woman would react like any other Deryni woman, but she wasn't sure that the fetus would be effected because Deryni powers don't seem to develop until the child is older. I've been thinking about that though and I think that question needs further investigation. Unborn Jerusha helped her mother and Tieg Heal in Heretic and Evaine immediately knew she was carrying a Healer. Rhysel's empowerment of Owain did things to Michaela and unborn Uthyr. And Tieg did things even as a small child. So I'm not convinced that merasha wouldn't effect an unborn Deryni child, especially an unborn Healer.

Getting back to Bride, I mispelled a couple names and held back something I could have shared because I forgot that it's in Prologue and Chapter 1. Sorry about that! It's Sion de Bennett, not Cyan as I spelled it. It's also Noelie Ramsey. Brecken, Noelie, and Kristoffl (sp?) Ramsey are the descendents of Mearan Prince Jolyon's youngest daughter, Magrette. At the beginning of Bride, Brecken is set to marry Araxie's older sister, Richelle Haldane, and Kristoffl is in the seminary studying to become a priest. Noelie is suggested for Kelson although the CC is worried about the parallel to Sidana, Ithel, and Llewell, and the Torenthi group (Mahael, Taymuraz, and Morag) really hate the idea for political reasons. It's not a problem though because, as Rothana tells Kelson while trying to convince him to marry Araxie, Noelie and Rory are in love. What Melissa and I didn't share is that Noelie's mother, Oksana, really wants her daughter to marry Kelson. Oksana wanted to marry Brion and when that failed, she went after Nigel. That's all in the Prologue, so I can share it. (Having now heard Prologue and Chapter 1 three times, I'm pretty clear on what IS there and can be shared).

Getting back to the Con. There were a lot of great panels and the Michaeline Mass was beautiful! Julianne, please post the Michaeline website address. Jennifer and I, and probably others, would like to know more about the Order.

Katherine isn't sure about her Con schedule for next year. She said she'll definitely be at Darkover again and she might go to Philicon in Philadelphia earlier in the fall. I said we needed to get her somewhere in the middle of the country and mentioned that we'd talked about organizing a DeryniCon. She sounded interested...I think she'd come if we organized it. So shall we get a team of organizers together? I'm willing to serve on the planning committee, but I think it will take a lot of people working very hard. How about it, group?

I think that's almost everything. Oh, one more thing. Don't strangle me, please, but I fear I may have single-handedly murdered Araxie in AfterBride. We got into a discussion (actually Brom started this) about whether Rothana would ever become a thorn in Araxie's side and if Kelson and Rothana's feelings might ever resurface. Katherine said she supposed that could happen. I suggested that Kelson might turn to Rothana if something happened to Araxie, such as she died in childbirth. Katherine kind of mulled that over and said, "You know, we haven't had anyone die that way." I hastily reminded her that numerous women in Codex died exactly that way, but Katherine said, "But no one's died that way in a novel. We haven't seen it." I hope I didn't plant the seeds of Araxie's demise in her brain! I guess if Araxie dies in childbirth you can all blame me.

Well...I think that's about all. Ask me some questions and I might remember a few more details. It was great meeting those of you I got to meet! I wish more of our group could have attended. Maybe next year!

Susan -- Mistress of Complications