sf01 puts the fun in funeral

19 05 2011

Nobody’s quite sure how to deal with any of this.

Shaking things up is the name of the game for Stars Fall. They’ve had a comparatively easy time of it so far; folks stay home while other folks run off and have wacky, danger-packed adventures. Well, now the danger’s come home to roost, and things are changing all around them. This could get ugly. Pack fresh underwear.

Also, let’s play a little speculation game. Finish reading the new scenes, then take a look at this.

Some whitespace for spoilers. Although it’s kind of the first thing in the new scenes, sooo… not HUGE spoilers.

Emily’s Foresight is getting a bit gummed up, and has shown her ten visions. Right now, you have SOME of what you need to know what they are or what they will represent. Others, well, wait and see, but it’d be no fun if I told you which was which. Let’s see what you can do with these. I’ve numbered them, handy-like, for your convenience, but will neither confirm nor deny.

1. Undying, with a bitter taste of ash where logic once held sway.
2. Warm life and cold death twice over, on the hunt anew.
3. Water from a far away empire, in which mermaids now swim to distant shores.
4. Glowing golden eyes of rage, an awakening summer sleep.
5. They will no longer lie down, after one falls.
6. All together, speaking in one magnetic voice.
7. His merciful punishment, carried on artificial winds.
8. Faintly flickering satisfaction within the burning metal wheel.
9. A fertile river valley, harrowing and winding, but ending in a welcoming land before a great hill shaped like a witch’s hat.
10. A shattered and murdered world, half in flame, half in ice, the crowns divided.

I will say that these all refer to characters or events in Stars Fall, and they will occur in the order they are listed.

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24 responses

19 05 2011
storytellersjk

Very well written mourning scenes. I didn’t see the other two coming, I have to admit. You know I remember you complaining in the past about how annoyed you get at how kill happy Wheedon is and how cheap you find that technique. Scenes like this are a good example of why. Characters dieing should have impact, usually one part disbelief and one part surprise (no matter how foreshadowed a death may have been), or else its just cheap melodrama. Killing characters, especially long running characters in a serialized piece of fiction, should be more than just a plot device or a way to get cheap heat. Too many writers forget that these days I think.

19 05 2011
Stefan "Twoflower" Gagne

Cheap heat’s a good way to put it. Either cheap heat to Women-in-Refrigerators push someone over the edge, or in Whedon’s case, to show “ANYTHING can happen! No one is safe!” Lame in both cases.
In contrast, these deaths are pivotal, tied heavily into the plot, and will have deep repercussions well beyond this point.

19 05 2011
cmdr_zoom

aaand I’m crying.

19 05 2011
loopychew

I didn’t anticipate Esrever dying; I figure he continued to operate in the mirror realm and wouldn’t be physically harmed by external forces even by holding open the portal, but DAMN. I actually welled up at the eulogies.
In contrast, these deaths are pivotal, tied heavily into the plot, and will have deep repercussions well beyond this point.
Firstly being that there are probably a bunch of people TRAPPED ON THE MOON. Not just Anu, but people who were charging the MCs at that time.
And I can only imagine how Anu feels; not only is she TRAPPED ON THE MOON, but the reason for her return, and the person that was to help her with that, and her biological birth father are all dead. (I’m trying to remember; does Anu have all the memories Una had before they split?) I would think her an ur-example of “woman scorned,” as she’s one of the few with a close connection to all three (well, one could argue her connection to Kas, but).

19 05 2011
loopychew

1. Undying, with a bitter taste of ash where logic once held sway.
Almost sounds like Los Muertos, but I doubt zombie brain fluid would taste like ash. Feral something or anothers?
2. Warm life and cold death twice over, on the hunt anew.
That sounds like Scout.
3. Water from a far away empire, in which mermaids now swim to distant shores.
Aetheric steam? Not quite water, but it could be close enough for prophecy. We haven’t had a mermaid world surface to my recollection, so…
4. Glowing golden eyes of rage, an awakening summer sleep.
Can’t think of anything off the top of my head.
5. They will no longer lie down, after one falls.
Either “one” is part of “them,” or “one” IS “them,” which is being used as an indefinite gender article. The latter suggests something about Los Muertos. Hell, even the former suggests Los Muertos after SA04 (“one” being Doctor Ruiz).
6. All together, speaking in one magnetic voice.
Moscow?
7. His merciful punishment, carried on artificial winds.
8. Faintly flickering satisfaction within the burning metal wheel.
9. A fertile river valley, harrowing and winding, but ending in a welcoming land before a great hill shaped like a witch’s hat.
Not sure about these three. 7 and 8 could refer to Jeeves, but I don’t know if it will.
10. A shattered and murdered world, half in flame, half in ice, the crowns divided.
This one’s the most patently obvious one, which is why I’m hesitant to actually SUGGEST it directly deals with the dream Emily is having.
It could be Mirror-Realm versions of Emily and Scout, but I’m not quite sure how things would work there with Esrever gone.

19 05 2011
kamalloy

I was afraid Ono wasn’t going to make it. I did not see Esrever coming at all. Well played.
Here’s my guesses at prophecy. Warning for other commenters that towards the end it might get really spoilery as I’m speculating about the whole thing. (I’m probably totally wrong, but if you don’t want to contemplate the end yet, don’t read past #8.)
1. Undying, with a bitter taste of ash where logic once held sway.
This might have already happened with the end of Arcology #A076 (where logic once held sway); the “undying” being the memorials.
2. Warm life and cold death twice over, on the hunt anew.
Scout, particularly given his converation with Taamusi.
3. Water from a far away empire, in which mermaids now swim to distant shores.
This “Quantum Mermaid” that you refer to at the very end, since it sounds like Petersen, Morales, and Maria are all doing some work in Seattle (Distant Shores).
4. Glowing golden eyes of rage, an awakening summer sleep.
Possibly Emily getting more and more involved with using the Crown of Summer. Alternately, a member of the Summer Court gaining some sort of new (and nasty) powerup.
5. They will no longer lie down, after one falls.
I want to say this has something to do wit the “stars fall” theme, possibly dealing with the Orbitals who are still lurking out there.
6. All together, speaking in one magnetic voice.
Like said, it does remind me of Moscow. Alternately, could be communications from the main Orbital fleet.
7. His merciful punishment, carried on artificial winds.
8. Faintly flickering satisfaction within the burning metal wheel.
Haven’t really got too much of an idea on these two, so I’ll keep them in mind as we progress through the story.
9. A fertile river valley, harrowing and winding, but ending in a welcoming land before a great hill shaped like a witch’s hat.
10. A shattered and murdered world, half in flame, half in ice, the crowns divided.
10 is the Bad(?) Ending, with Emily and Scout separated and trapped on the Earth for all eternity. But before that happens, they realize that the only way to save the world is to get everyone else off it, so they use their power (and probably Orbital work, and a whole lot of other things) to send the rest of the world’s population to an empty Earth – Pangaea. And what they find there, when seeking out their new home, is 9.

19 05 2011
Stefan "Twoflower" Gagne

Yep, Anu retained Una’s memories from before the split. She grew into Fae-dom after that, though, and considers that copied life a past of her past, a closed chapter. Still, she would NOT be happy about Ono’s death, and she did work closely with Kas, too. And yep, TRAPPED ON THE MOON.

19 05 2011
Anonymous

We haven’t had a mermaid world surface to my recollection, so…

There was mentions of Atlantis in lf01. And also one of the elemental witch is part of the Royal err… Water Court.
-HP

19 05 2011
jengagne

I would wager that #1 is something Orbital-related due to the “logic once held sway” part. But undying? Ash? I dunno.
For #5, that’s my bet too, that this is a reference to Los Muertos. They sort of fell after they took out the Doc. But I wonder what could change that.
#6 Yeah, that’s my thought too — Moscow? But I don’t know what’s “magnetic” about that.
#10 Esrever seems to be one of a kind. I wonder what abilities Anu might have inherited from him — but she seems pretty damaged, damaged by more than just grief. Either way I doubt Stefan would use the same trick twice to make mirror-duplicate fall guys.

19 05 2011
jengagne

1. Yeah, I assume this is Orbital-related due to the “logic” mention. Hmm, undying memorials? I wonder.
2. Ooh, that sounds plausible.
3. Good idea. Why is the water from a far away empire, though? The only empire I know of at the moment is the Brits.
4. Achievement Unlocked! Glowy Eyes! I could buy that. “Rage” though, wonder what that’ll be about. We’ve seen a lot of tragedy already, so I wonder what could cause such a rage-powerup.

19 05 2011
jengagne

I suppose they could still get her back somehow; didn’t Emily promise she’d figure out a way to do it?
… Oops. Wait, it was Kas who promised to work out a way to keep the mirror conduit open and therefore to bring Anu back. Which she never did get a chance to figure out. Doublecrap!
Anu might not care about coming back now, but all those other people won’t be too pleased with the whole “stranded to die” aspect…
Let’s hope Kanthi has been stepping up the space program. o_o

19 05 2011
kamalloy

3) Yeah, the British Empire isn’t that far away. However, it could be interpreted as steam (which is just gaseous water) from the breath of the angels (a faraway empire). Alternately, water from Atlantis.
I like how there are multiple viable interpretations for these.

20 05 2011
loopychew

1,3: DUH. *slaps forehead*
4: Both interpretations are pretty good, but the Crown of Summer is Hindsight, so it would mean she’d be consulting Lady Winter a lot in that case.
5: This makes sense, too, particularly if Lar is the “fallen” one.
9, 10: Tragic, but I can see that. 9 could also be a metaphor.

20 05 2011
schadrach

Another possibility regarding #6 might be Seattle. We’ve got major characters heading in that direction and they *are* millions of tiny electronic devices…

20 05 2011
jengagne

Isn’t Lar braindead in a white room somewhere? … actually, a white room on the arcology that Kas just bamf’d away?
We know he didn’t act alone, though.

20 05 2011
jengagne

RE: #1, if it were already done and therefore irrelevant, she wouldn’t be seeing it with Foresight, would she? So either it already happened but it’s still relevant to shaping the future, or it hasn’t happened yet, or some combo thereof.
I expect at least some of all our guesses are flat-out wrong simply because we don’t have all the information we’d need to guess yet (as he said in the OP)

20 05 2011
loopychew

Lar’s braindead, but fallen doesn’t necessarily have to mean *DEAD* dead. For all we know, even the people in the prisons were recovered. Alternatively, if he were bamf’d, then he IS fallen.

20 05 2011
jengagne

True, I guess they did retrieve Jesse from her brain-damaged white room status — but my impression is that she wasn’t quite as fried as he was.
Considering how little time they had and the lack of reflective surfaces in a white room, I would bet they didn’t get him. Esrever can’t leave the mirror so that would require some other Orbital to remember Lar, go fetch him, and toss him into a mirror.
But this is Stefan’s writing so WHO KNOWS right? :D

20 05 2011
loopychew

Ooh, good call.

20 05 2011
schadrach

Taking my shot at the full list:
1. Undying, with a bitter taste of ash where logic once held sway.
Los muertos, perhaps? They are certainly undying, and one could claim that when the doctor was alive and acting as the “head” of the beast that presumably logic held sway?
2. Warm life and cold death twice over, on the hunt anew.
Scout on the hunt again, having been alive, then hound, then lion, and now joining the Wild Hunt with the hounds again as mentioned in the conversation with Taamusi? This is probably the most straightforward one of the lot. Which means we’re all probably wrong. =p
3. Water from a far away empire, in which mermaids now swim to distant shores.
This one I’m not sure of. The only empires we’ve heard reference to are England and one in Asia. I’m totally drawing a blank.
4. Glowing golden eyes of rage, an awakening summer sleep.
Someone is certainly angry, and that someone is certainly a summerfae. Perhaps Emily getting angry and actually wielding her power as wearer of the Crown of Fire rather than restraining herself as she has so far?
5. They will no longer lie down, after one falls.
This is probably tied to the beginning of when the stars fall, but I’m not sure which “they” is “they.”
6. All together, speaking in one magnetic voice.
Like I mentioned above, I think this one is to do with Seattle. Probably Seattle dropping the charade of being Seattle and acting as a single entity.
7. His merciful punishment, carried on artificial winds.
The “artificial wind” could very well be aetheric steam (the literal breath of angels mixed with actual steam, pressurized and pumped). The question being who is in line for a “merciful” punishment? If he hadn’t “renegotiated” in LF I would have guessed Benny/Ben’ai.
8. Faintly flickering satisfaction within the burning metal wheel.
I have no idea whatsoever. I can’t think of anything that could be adequately described as a burning metal wheel to even link it to. =/
9. A fertile river valley, harrowing and winding, but ending in a welcoming land before a great hill shaped like a witch’s hat.
Not sure on this one as far as details. The withes’ hat is a very clear symbol of Emily. The welcoming land is certainly Pangea. That is lies “before” the hat implies that Emily will see the way to Pangea. Which either means some complicated way to find an appropriate Earth or that depositing ~2 and a half earths of shaman-charged planetary mass at effectively random coordinates creates such a place (which makes Emily receiving Kas’ memory palace more relevant).
10. A shattered and murdered world, half in flame, half in ice, the crowns divided.
This one we know — the world split in two, half aflame, half frozen. Presumably this is after “speaking the word that would one day break the world in half” (to quote how fs05 described the Pandora spell). So, umm, Pandora will be cast, with everyone other than Emily or Scout either having been killed beforehand or passed to the other side (to an alternate earth, “Pangea”), with the two of them being all that remains on this one?

20 05 2011
poet_ninja

#5 really makes me think “Winterhounds.”
A lot.
And if they stop lying down, someone, somewhere is gonna feel it.

21 05 2011
viciv

Because it hasn’t been said yet:
I like the children. They’re cute and teenagery. (And one of them has an eternity of experience.)

21 05 2011
lirazel

O-kay….
I also liked the mourning scenes. And I like the way the Esrever/Anu tension was “resolved” — I was worried that Kas was forgetting about them.
And I liked the teenagers.
1. Undying, with a bitter taste of ash where logic once held sway.
This sounds like Lar to me. Or, possibly, Anu. The mirror world was very “logical”.
2. Warm life and cold death twice over, on the hunt anew.
This is Scout.
3. Water from a far away empire, in which mermaids now swim to distant shores.
I, too, think this is the British Empire, doing something-or-other with the Atlanteans.
4. Glowing golden eyes of rage, an awakening summer sleep.
You know, Lady Winter’s been much in evidence; Lady Summer is still there in the past… Or, it might be the Summerhounds other than Scout.
5. They will no longer lie down, after one falls.
This sounds like the Winterhounds to me.
6. All together, speaking in one magnetic voice.
To me, this is definitely Seattle.
7. His merciful punishment, carried on artificial winds.
Somehow, this doesn’t sound like steam. The steam, after all, is supernatural, not artificial. But who deserves a merciful punishment? Petersen?
8. Faintly flickering satisfaction within the burning metal wheel.
Why does this make me think of Jeeves?
9. A fertile river valley, harrowing and winding, but ending in a welcoming land before a great hill shaped like a witch’s hat.
This sounds like Japan to me.
10. A shattered and murdered world, half in flame, half in ice, the crowns divided.
Not to be spoilery here, but in one of your bonus stories there’s a vision of the burned world with the crowns still one. So, I don’t think Emily’s vision is of THE future, but of A future — and the reason she can’t see it is that she’s coming to a choice point and even Foresight can’t tell her what she’ll choose — only Insight, and only when the moment has fully arrived.

22 05 2011
Anonymous

Small detail:

Typing with one hand was extremely difficult

Perhaps you should add “and an excruciating pain”… I don’t find typing with one hand *that* difficult.
-HP

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