Literary Reviews, Page 2

"Detour From Abbinford,"  (continued)



The plot of "Detour..." revolves around a washed out, would-be sorcerer turned traveler, adventurer and mercenary named Saegar who, after developing a severe case of swamp fever, is taken in by a waif who gives her name as Gren, or "just Gren," as she puts matters. The orphan lost her mother when the girl was very young and recently her father, the victim of an anti-sorcery vigilante mob led by an apparently crazed priest conducting his personal inquisition of terror.


Gren apparently finds Saegar sick along the road near her village, and takes him, along with his noble stead, Slayer, into a stable, her family's house having been burned down by the mob. She nurses Saegar back to health with a foul-tasting concoction, the formula for which she derived from her late father's book of magic and herbs.


After regaining consciousness, Saegar inquires about his benefactor's situation, only to be given a vague account of her circumstances due to Gren's initial distrust and suspicion so soon after the traumatic loss of her dear father by stoning. Because of Saegar's attire, the girl fears her guest is a monk; and her recent experiences with representatives of the Church has made her more than a bit reluctant to trust in its presumed partisans. Indeed, the reader wonders why she bothered to help the unfortunate in the first place.


After assuring his young hostess that he's not a monk, she confides in Saegar that her father had indeed been a sorcerer, but by no means evil. In fact, he had had such power, and had been in the possession of such powerful magical information in the form of a prized book, that he could have smote the priest and the entire crowd had he so chosen. But Gren's father had only used his powers for good, for healing and such. He had never had any problems of politic under the village's also recently late priest. They had only started with the remarkably prompt arrival of his replacement.


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