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Author Topic: Deryni Rising  (Read 35516 times)

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Offline Shiral

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #60 on: January 25, 2016, 04:36:29 pm »
Loving all your discussion starters Whitelaughter.

I too have sympathy for Charissa especially having read some of the back story in The King's Deryni.  However I keep reminding myself that this is a two-hundred year old claim that is actually going no-where. It is hard to see that she would have any support from any of the real power brokers within Gwynedd - certainly not any of the Dukes - just a few discontented nobles with an eye to the main chance.

I'm not sure - please jump in and correct me, folks- that Wencit has any Festilic pretensions, I think that line dies with Charissa. He certainly doesn't intend to rule Gwynedd in place of Torenth. My understanding is that he sees a weak neighbour, torn by internal divisions with a young inexperienced king and looks for an easy conquest.

 I cannot see either how a marriage between Kelson and Charissa would have been acceptable. Prior to Kelson the Haldanes have spent two hundred years pretending that their powers have absolutely nothing to do with the Deryni - in fact they come from a dimetrically opposed direction. To use the language of Merseyside (where I currently live and minister) - the Haldane powers come from the Big Fella, the Deryni from the Other Fella.

I don't think that anyone - not even she  herself- has any reason whatsoever to suspect that Jehana is Deryni prior to Kelson's coronation. Neither for most of the book has Loris any reason to suppose that Kelson is half-Deryni and proud of who he is. The only fly in the ointment as far as Loris is concerned is Morgan and once Brion has died he thinks that he has that sorted with Jehana's connivance. Ian far from being someone to be unmasked, is an ally in that he is busy spreading little nuggets of poison bait about Morgan. Personally I think that what pushes Loris over the brink into madness, is Duncan's involvement in magic - two hundred years of the "hand of God" keeping the priesthood free from Deryni taint has been seen to fail. If Duncan, how many others, Loris must wonder.

I don't think voluntary abdication is in the mindset of a culture based on primogeniture and the divine right of kings. Neither do I think Nigel would have accepted disinheriting his nephew (Conall now, but that's a whole different can of worms!). Challenging primogeniture for whatever reason would have risked undermining the whole basis on which feudal society is based.

In certain countries abdication is still not a word mentioned before one's sovereign.  ;)

I suspect BOTH Nigel and Kelson would have objected very strenuously to both the idea of marriage between Kelson and Charissa, AND the idea of Kelson abdicating the throne.  Point one, Nigel's beloved and brother and Kelson's beloved father was assassinated by Charissa. Even if we can now find her motives understandable, a loyal brother and son are going to be distinctly unenthusiastic about the late King's heir marrying his father's murderer, to say nothing of how Jehana would feel about it.

    Point 2, if Charissa's motivations to kill the Haldanes are understandable, Kelson's hardly going to volunteer to be  the next Haldane she does away with. He would NEVER be able to trust her, even if he were to put aside every filial scruple he has. Which I think would be unlikely. HIS reasons to do away with Charissa would be  just as legitimate as hers to do away with him in that circumstance. Having a King and Queen of Gwynedd determined to off one another would be a dynastic disaster.

Point 3: Nigel really doesn't want to be King, and he would argue HIS points to Kelson about his being the legitimate heir of the late King quite forcefully, probably even more forcefully than Loris would argue his. Nigel would also have some pretty pointed things to say to Loris about trying to talk the new and rightful King of Gwynedd into abdicating his throne.

I'm not sure I understand how Loris would have unmasked Ian. I've never had the impression they ever spoke to one another in any function other than their membership on the Privy Council. Nobody knew Ian was in league with or would be Charissa's champion until he stepped forward at Kelson's coronation.

Melissa
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Offline Elkhound

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #61 on: January 25, 2016, 06:30:21 pm »
If Kelson would object to the idea, what would Charissa say?  The shrieks would have echoed from the Atalantic clar to Torenth.

Offline Evie

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #62 on: January 25, 2016, 06:45:48 pm »
Fun discussion!  Although I also feel a little more sympathy for Charissa these days (seeing one's father killed in front of you would have caused some definite mental and emotional scars, not to mention hatred for the family one held responsible!), I can't imagine a Kelson/Charissa marriage resolving the dynastic feud for the reasons others have already stated. But to address another point you mentioned earlier....


And of course her death - like Brion's death - doesn't resolve anything, the feud continues with Wencit as the next pretender. And if she'd killed Kelson (who as others have pointed out, is at his best in this book) she then has to, while exhausted, face Nigel: she can't win.

I suspect even an exhausted but fully trained Deryni would have a distinct advantage over a Haldane heir who only has unactivated magical potential, and as far as I recall, Nigel hadn't ever even had his Haldane potential set at this point in the series, much less activated. (Or was he also wearing an earring that I've long since forgotten about?)  Charissa would not be likely to wait patiently until Morgan and Duncan can perform an Empowerment ritual for Nigel, after all.  So she'd easily be able to summon up the power to kill a fully human, non-empowered Nigel who can't even summon up defensive wards, even if she was fatigued from killing Kelson first.  Kelson, being half-Deryni (which even Morgan and Duncan didn't know until after they Empowered him), might have stood some chance against Charissa even if the ritual hadn't worked, although that would have been a long shot given his lack of training.  Nigel, on the other hand, would probably have been more like a poor insect looking up at a swiftly descending sledgehammer if he were suddenly put in a position of having to defend himself in a Duel Arcane.  :D

My understanding is also that the Festillic line died out with Charissa, but Wencit's pretensions were his own, as her nearest male Furstan kin. Her death was simply a pretext for him to cast greedy eyes on a former vassal kingdom in a state of internal turmoil.
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Offline Jerusha

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #63 on: January 25, 2016, 08:31:44 pm »
If Kelson had lost to Charissa, perhaps the Council might have stepped in to prevent a Dual Archane between Nigel and Charissa.  There were rules to be followed (not that the Furstans or Festils were fussy about rules), but it wasn't until High Deryni that the council agreed that half-breed Morgan could be challenged (and not to the death.)  With Nigel being human, and with no reason to be empowered at the time, perhaps the Council would have finally stepped in to prevent that happening.  Though depending who was no the Council at that time, there may not have been agreement to take action. 
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Offline Evie

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #64 on: January 26, 2016, 12:09:59 am »
IIRC, the CC told Kelson that, as the Haldane, he already had the right to call upon them for aid. Of course, that was a pretty useless "privilege," given that he had never even heard of them until shortly before Arilan took him through their Portal to meet them all personally, and therefore it's doubtful the CC ever expected him to actually turn up on their doorstep.... ;D
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Offline drakensis

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #65 on: January 26, 2016, 01:07:51 am »
My understanding is also that the Festillic line died out with Charissa, but Wencit's pretensions were his own, as her nearest male Furstan kin. Her death was simply a pretext for him to cast greedy eyes on a former vassal kingdom in a state of internal turmoil.
Wencit was Charissa's first cousin once-removed, with the common ancestor being his maternal grandmother, Chriselle Festil. His Festillic claim was quite valid as such things go.

Liam-Lajos was Charissa's second cousin and third cousin: his mother Morag was Wencit's sister and his paternal grandfather Mahael was a grandson of Chriselle's mother AriElinora Festil.


Charissa did get dealt a bad hand in many respects - although if she'd not followed up her Festillic claim she'd still have been a very powerful noblewoman and lived in comfort and prosperity. As a very accomplished Deryni she'd have had respect in that sphere as well.
This doesn't really take away her treatment by her husband or the obsessive focus on Gwynedd that her father had inculated in her with the result that... well, to refer to the famous line by George R. Martin's queen: "When you play the game of thrones you win, or you die."

It's hard to see Charissa marrying Kelson and it working out politically. For that matter, it's hard to see her successfully ruling Gwynedd if she had killed him. Even with Morgan out of the way and presumably an army from her cousin, fringe regions would likely have broken away and the Deryni-hatred preached for generations would have led to constant uprisings in core regions.
As a result, while Festil I eliminated the main Haldane line (as far as was known) and claimed based on his distant blood connection - and proceeded to expand Gwynedd's borders; it's likely a Queen Charissa would have seen Gwynedd diminished by the loss of at least Meara-Cassan and Claibourne and have been largely dependent on the House of Furstan's continued support to hold the throne.
Not to mention she had no heirs other than Wencit, who also had no living children. So before long it would have been Lionel as king of Torenth and Gwynedd, probably using one of his brothers as viceroys... not really a stable situation.

Offline whitelaughter

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #66 on: January 26, 2016, 06:36:32 pm »
Thank you for all your responses  :D

In order: There is of course zero indication in Deryni Rising that Nigel has in anyway been prepared to gain the Haldane powers. I say 'of course' because letting Kelson know that there is a back up plan for after Charissa reduces him to a small pile of ash would not be good for his morale  :P

- Kelson and Charissa would both be horrified by the idea, agreed. But that is one of the prices of royalty, that you don't get to choose your spouse. And while trust is in short supply, they could be fairly sure that they wouldn't murder each other until it was clear that Charissa was going to bear a healthy male heir, as doing so beforehand achieves nothing. Since she would know long before anybody else, thanks to her Deryni powers, they'd be wise to live in separate castles once she was pregnant.
 [Massive tangent: The condemnation of abortion predates Aquinas by 12 centuries, it's in the Didache from the first century. Given the Deryni can mindspeak with the foetus though, they'd probably regard the presence of someone to talk to the starting mark. Something that has struck me is that there should be occasional cases of Deryni having non-magical children, as the genes from distant human ancestors pop up: their absence implies that they got culled long before they were born. Also, given Deryni can kill a grown adult with a hand gesture, they would needn't herbs to obliterate a foetus!]

- the inability of Charissa to have children - if known - would put the kybosh on this. Maybe. Would depend who knew. It wouldn't be difficult to fake a pregnancy using the shapeshift abilities. Given Wencit corrupts Bran Coris the next year by activating his Haldane potential, and Coris has a Deryni wife + children, changelings are available! And the plan could then be sold to Charissa as a way to disinherit the legitimate Haldane line, which would be a subtle form of revenge likely to appeal to someone who can't have her own children.
The flip side though: there are no Healers until Morgan rediscovers the ability. Could he have healed Charissa? If so, would that have been enough to end her hatred of him?

Offline Elkhound

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #67 on: January 26, 2016, 07:40:33 pm »
Unswe "Queen Charissa", the Quinnells would have asserted Mearan and Cassanian independence, and would have had the backing of Llanedd & Howicce and most of the states of the Connait.  Morgan would have had Corwyn secede, with the backing of Trallia and the Forcinn.  Not to mention Jehanna's family declaring blood-feud over Kelson.  Charissa would have bitten off more than she could chew.  In short, she wasn't nearly as smart as she thought she was.

Offline Jerusha

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #68 on: January 26, 2016, 09:04:40 pm »
Try as I might, I cannot see the marriage of Kelson and Charissa.  They would have spent their wedding night with daggers under their pillows.
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Offline whitelaughter

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #69 on: January 27, 2016, 02:07:29 am »
Unswe "Queen Charissa", the Quinnells would have asserted Mearan and Cassanian independence, and would have had the backing of Llanedd & Howicce and most of the states of the Connait.  Morgan would have had Corwyn secede, with the backing of Trallia and the Forcinn.  Not to mention Jehanna's family declaring blood-feud over Kelson.  Charissa would have bitten off more than she could chew.  In short, she wasn't nearly as smart as she thought she was.
[nods] All this sounds likely.

Try as I might, I cannot see the marriage of Kelson and Charissa.  They would have spent their wedding night with daggers under their pillows.
Sounds as if you can see it quite clearly :P

Offline drakensis

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #70 on: February 01, 2016, 05:12:00 am »
Morgan would have had Corwyn secede, with the backing of Trallia and the Forcinn.
To be fair this is one point I disagree on.

Morgan was already wounded and I strongly doubt he would have survived Kelson by longer than it took for one of Charissa's moors to get hold of him - Charissa knows that he's a clear threat to her and he's far too unpopular with the Church and most human nobles to be worth using as a hostage or the like. So I'm sorry ladies, but Kelson's death is pretty much Morgan's death knell at this point.

With that said, Warin de Grey might start a successful rebellion in Corwyn against Charissa, potentially forming a revived Mooryn under Nigel (duke of Carthmoor) or one of his sons.

Offline revanne

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #71 on: February 01, 2016, 07:18:29 am »
So I'm sorry ladies, but Kelson's death is pretty much Morgan's death knell at this point.

With that said, Warin de Grey might start a successful rebellion in Corwyn against Charissa, potentially forming a revived Mooryn under Nigel (duke of Carthmoor) or one of his sons.

Sadly I must concur, and even more sadly from my point of view I don't give that much for Duncan's chances either, as Kelson's confessor.

Interesting idea about Warin though.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2016, 09:41:10 am by revanne »
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Offline Elkhound

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Re: Deryni Rising
« Reply #72 on: February 01, 2016, 07:48:55 pm »
Morgan would have had Corwyn secede, with the backing of Trallia and the Forcinn.
To be fair this is one point I disagree on.

Morgan was already wounded and I strongly doubt he would have survived Kelson by longer than it took for one of Charissa's moors to get hold of him - Charissa knows that he's a clear threat to her and he's far too unpopular with the Church and most human nobles to be worth using as a hostage or the like. So I'm sorry ladies, but Kelson's death is pretty much Morgan's death knell at this point.

With that said, Warin de Grey might start a successful rebellion in Corwyn against Charissa, potentially forming a revived Mooryn under Nigel (duke of Carthmoor) or one of his sons.
. The point is that Corwyn would secede.  Under whom is secondary.

 

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