Changes for Chapter 1 of Without Bloodshed 2E
Many of the interactions in “The Unforgiven”, Chapter 1 of Without Bloodshed, will need to be re-written. This will change the rest of the novel considerably. However, it’s necessary because I want to account for the events of Silent Clarion, set things up for Dissident Aggressor, and improve the characterization and plotting in Without Bloodshed.
It’s one thing to have Naomi come to the door sleepy, but she should come armed with a naked sword because it’s long past midnight.
Naomi should recognize Imaginos on sight. After all, how many blue-eyed, white-haired bishounen are there in the world? Of that small set, how many of them wear double-breasted white suits with blue cravats and sapphire cufflinks?
Naomi should not be friendly to Imaginos. They have history from Silent Clarion.
Naomi should address Imaginos by his “true name”, and then by the alias he used in Silent Clarion: “Ian Malkin”.
Naomi should recognize that Imaginos has an unconscious woman who looks a hell of a lot like Christabel Crowley in his arms and suspect nefarious intentions on his part.
Never mind the kind Winter Solstice wishes. Sure, they establish early on that the Starbreaker setting isn’t on a Christian calendar, but it’s out of character given what Naomi knows about Imaginos.
We don’t want to turn Naomi into a complete bitch lest she put readers off, but she should be polite, firm, and highly suspicious.
Imaginos/Ian Malkin/Isaac Magnin
I need to do a better job of showing that Imaginos and Isaac Magnin are the same person.
Naomi recognzing Imaginos for who he is and then calling him “Ian Malkin” is an opportunity for Imaginos to imply that he’s using a new identity nowawadays, and explain that he’s now “Isaac Magnin”.
Imaginos should also recognize that Naomi has the true Starbreaker.
Naomi possessing the true Starbreaker requires changes in Desdinova’s scenes later on.
Imaginos should insist that despite what Naomi thinks of him, he’s here to help Christabel, because he promised to see her safely home.
When Naomi insists that Imaginos leave Christabel on the couch, and settles into one of the armchairs by the fire to keep an eye on her, he should temporarily retreat.
We should make Ashtoreth a viewpoint character, and have her show up as Imaginos leaves Christabel’s house. This will split “The Unforgiven” into two scenes, but I think it’s worth it.
She already has a good idea as to what’s going on because she saw Naomi greet Imaginos with the Starbreaker in her hand.
She offers to help Imaginos, since Naomi isn’t likely to go to sleep on her own, but Imaginos insists on dealing with it himself.
Imaginos leads Ashtoreth through Christabel’s house, first disabling her household AI daemon Aleister.
Ashtoreth should still remonstrate with Imaginos, insisting that he might be able to get what he needs by talking to Morgan, but to no avail.
Ashtoreth doesn’t fully understand Imaginos' purpose, but all he’ll say is that Christabel must die if Annelise is to live again. The Christabel/Annelise connection will come up early in the next novel, Dissident Aggressor, in the first part: “When You Don’t See Me”.
It isn’t until she gets into the limousine that brought Imaginos to Crouch End and sees the other passenger that she begins to understand. But before she can demand an explanation, Imaginos tells her he’s counting on her to help make it a show to remember. The limo kicks into gear, leaving Ashtoreth with the original Christabel Crowley.
The question is, do we give the line about how this should be an interesting show to Ashtoreth, or find away for Imaginos to keep it?