Posted 08 July 2007 - 04:11 PM
I didn't take notes at the reading because I was in full costume, but I'm just going to point out some stuff I recall from it, since I'm the first one from the con back home and ready to post. The order may be a bit funky, but I'm just throwing out some things to keep you occupied until the full reports come in.
- George has been working on this chapter for many years, it seems. He's restructured it several times, due to the nature of the chapter involving many flashbacks into Varamyr's life.
-The chapter begins with Varamyr inside the skin of one of his wolves (like the Bran inside summer POVs we've seen, in fact, at first I thought it was a Bran chapter). The three wolves (One-Eye, the oldest, and I can't recall the names of the other two) are hunting and come across three people, two men and a woman cradling her "pup" (baby). The wolf thinks that the men are the greatest danger, and they set upon them. They kill the men, and then the woman. The wolf Varamyr is inside begins eating the child, the "sweetest meat" of them all or something.
-Varamyr awakes from this in a shelter in an abandoned village about half a league north of this. He is injured. A boy stabbed him with a bone knife as he had tried to take a cloak from the boy's dead mother. Varamyr had been patched up by Thistle, a spear-wife, whom had not recognized him. They had started in a large group of refugees running from the Battle at the Wall. Some of those had run off with the Weeper, who was planning on taking the Wall, some had run off with a supposed seer woman who had a vision of boats arriving to take those beyond the wall to a new home, various others had gone in different directions.
-When Orell the eagle had burned, Varamyr had at first passed out. When this happened, his snow bear (who always hated him) broke free and killed a bunch of people before being slain. I can't recall what happened to the shadowcat... only his wolves had stayed true to him.
-Varamyr reflects on his training with Haggin (sp?), another skinchanger who he had been taken to as a boy.
-There is a flashback to when he was 6; he was a scrawny, sickly child whose older sister had taken to calling "Lump" (a name he later used when Thistle asked him who he was). He had a younger brother, Bump, who was strong and healthy and whom his mother had directed all her attention to, leaving Lump to fend for himself. They had three dogs, and one day the dogs were found in a room, with Bump dead. Their father could not know which dog was responsible, and so killed them one by one. When the last, most loyal of them came to the father's call, Varamyr slipped into him, and tried to beg his father not to kill him. Of course, being a dog, this came out as a whine, and when the father beheaded the dog, Varamyr screamed from elsewhere. At that point they knew what he was. Some time later, his father came with an axe and took him out into the woods, and Varamyr thought that it was his turn to die, but instead he gave him to Haggin.
ack... I think I'm more tired than I thought. There's something to chew on for awhile, before the others come with their notes and stuff. much more juicy stuff to come.