I guess “FINALLY!” isn’t the way to start a review huh?
So, Becky. Welcome back to the pack! We missed you!
So, let’s take it down.
Shauna did have the power to send herself back after Arkahn. She didn’t for a simple reason. It’s the same reason she refused to take of her collar when she first worked out how. The problem wasn’t the will to do it; the problem was that she had laid down her burden. At last. Drayenmeyer promised her that she was not going home.
And Shauna believed them.
Porec was right about one thing. Laundi is a point of contention between the University and the Legion. University is no beacon of light and compassion, we know that. The Legion/University fight isn’t about good and evil, it’s just the point of view. All the points of view we have gotten are from the people who have chosen sides long ago. Jareth, Fesmer, Porec.
Then take Zana, the sane and rational one and her only comment on the matter is: “Is that Kaileb on the ground? Is he staying for dinner? Even legionnaires need to eat.”
The Legion/University fight isn’t about good and evil; it’s just the point of view.
I like the Porec/Shauna interaction here. This is almost entirely what I was expecting. A lot of things happen in a year. I’m not worried about the training his given her. All the best superheroes start out by being forcibly apprenticed to the cruelest sensei.
We all saw it, Shauna going Sith Lord. But it’s easy to understand why.
The hook that got her, wasn’t the promise of power, nor the new skills she was getting. It was the responsibility.
Porec: See Shauna? Our duty is clear. We are needed.
Duty, responsibility… the ultimate Shauna bait.
Porec was right, she had a duty to herself. But she only looked at it when all her other responsibilities were done and properly seen to. She wouldn’t even go to a movie with her friends until she was sure there was nothing else to do, and even then she left her cell phone on, just in case.
The one thing she wanted for herself was to go home, but the only reason she could give was so that she could go back to work.
Now, she had nothing left to take care of except herself. Her friends were back safe, Arkahn’s life was saved, and her family was getting on without her. Welcome to the first day of the rest of your life.
So she started throwing herself into the one thing that was hers alone. The one thing, that had become like breathing to her. And Porec was the only one left who could teach her anything about a whole field that she frankly hadn’t heard of three months before.
One thing I liked was Tarnish Night. Two phrases stand out.“What does that mean for people like us?” “I’d want to see it with my own eyes. If only it wasn’t Tarnish Night…”
She’s relying on Odi a whole lot more. She’s had it forced down her throat since she got here, now she can’t remember life without it.
Porec gave her opportunities to walk away. He took of her chains, he took off the collar, he let her roll up her sleeves and duel with him, he flat out told her to walk away and go back to Laundi. She’s in.
But the deciding factor wasn’t when she sentenced that guy. The deciding factor was when Porec asked her: “What if you’re wrong?”
And she said “Then I’ll find a way to deal.”
The case would have been dismissed in Boston, because “What if you’re wrong” is a big question. Here it’s simply a matter of getting over it.
So here’s the thing. When Mike and Katherine find her, they will say “Did you really do that? No! Surely not!” And she’ll wake up to herself.
Because she’s changed, and not for the better, only for the powerful.
You tasted something far more dangerous than power Shauna Brown. You tasted Authority, and made your choice.
She was the one Fesmer was talking to. I knew it!
This episode is transitional. I said it before; storytelling is split between sense of action and transition. This is transition, setting the scene.
The plot points:
First, they were traveling for months. It’s going to be a long road to catching up with her. That’s why Drayanmeyer said, ‘Go West’. Any other command would have been a waste of time with so much distance between them.
Second, Shauna’s abandonment issues. Well, she got a bad slice. If she had seen the next line, which would have been: “Tyler, I can’t keep paying your bills. I have to pay for the PI looking for Shauna!”
Third, Shauna’s changes. When Mike and the others find her, she’s going to be saying:“Wait Mike! I can’t let you kill Porec!” “Why not?” “Well… it’s complicated!”
Of course you realize, that we ravenous heathens are not going to be happy with this. We want more already!
You can read more of Matt's work at mattstephens.me