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Werthead

Guy Gavriel Kay

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3 hours ago, Ran said:

I would put it down not to their having any specific romantic connection, but rather that Crispin had both seen what she had seen in Sarantium, in Valerius's rule and dreams, was someone who had shown intelligence and sympathy, and alone of all the people she knew would not try to use her to any end of his own. He was not a political person by nature and wanted nothing more from life than to be able to make his mosaics undisturbed. He was also, like her, someone who had lost a spouse. They had an understanding of one another, basically, and some measure of shared experience.

 

You didn't find the end result at all contrived though?  To have her appear?  At first, when Crispin indicated to Martinius that Gisel was (as I interpreted it) permission to find a wife of his choosing...that's why, at first, I thought Alixana coming to Crispin was because of something Gisel might have set in motion...I mean, Gisel didn't want the former Empress killed...

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19 minutes ago, Jaxom 1974 said:

You didn't find the end result at all contrived though? 

No. I initially recoiled from the idea of their having a romance but on further consideration it seemed to me, as I said, that the connection between them isn't romantic at the time Lord of Emperors ends, but something more like a seeking out of comfort and friendship and the desire to make something that will last (a mosaic with dolphins, once; children, now).

I think one thing about the epilogue is that it takes place like a year after the previous chapter. We don't know what has gone on for Alixana in that time, but Crispin imagines it wasn't easy. I think on can see how she could have been swayed towards finding someone she was sympatico with, someone she had some measure of shared experience with but who offered her different things from what her life had been like before.

I can see the note from Gisele indicating that she had a hand in Alixana turning up, but no, I think the reference here was to put us in mind of the fact that Crispin was married once and might marry again.

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I didn't totally hate Alixana turning up to be with Crispin, though as mentioned the fact that every female character that wasn't Gisele wanting a bit of him was pretty corny. But I did think it was contrived that they need to go into further hiding as their conversation strongly implies, since as SeanF said in his original question on this, there doesn't seem to be any particular reason why she should need to once Styliane was out of the way. Even if she somehow avoided news of that for a year, Crispin would surely set her straight immediately. 

Edited by polishgenius

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@Ran...I do not disagree with what you're saying about two souls finding their comfort and all...I don't. It just feels...off...in the execution. At least a little.  Despite their interactions, it never had the feel that it was meant to be...

Eh. It isn't something that ultimately takes away from the overall story...

(I still like Under Heaven and Lions more...and I think part one and Last Light also...damn it's hard to rank these...)

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6 hours ago, polishgenius said:

there doesn't seem to be any particular reason why she should need to once Styliane was out of the way.

Because there would be people who would surely try to use her to her own ends among the Antae. Such as Eudric, getting into his head that Governor is not enough and thinking marrying the former Empress could do a lot to establish his own imperial claim to the western half of the empire. If Alixana were revealed to be alive and well and the subject of potential intrigues, Gisel might then feel a need to remove her -- or, more likely, Leontes would.

Since Crispin made a very handy depiction of her that neither of them wanted to destroy, they really couldn't stick around.

 

Edited by Ran

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