Chapter I (that's not a one...)
Let me preface this by saying that these are my thoughts as I read through this book for the first time. I'm sure I'll be back to "OHHHH!!!" as we read more!
Now, on to the discussion:
First, let me say this prologue really creeped me out. It did exactly what it was supposed to do, in that it dropped me in the middle of the frying pan and made me feel sorry for the slab of meat that was cooking there. It loaded me with tons of questions and part of me isn't sure I want the answers!
With that being said, let's talk about the meat. Here we have a guardsman, who has been held prisoner by a sorcerer for nine days. He's been tortured, but the part that haunts him the most are the tortures he was forced to watch visited on others. He's forgotten his name, forgotten his life before now (except that he guarded the Khalif at some point), and didn't remember how he got there. Ask he remembers is the nine days he's counted of his imprisonment.
Enter Mouw Awa, who is called a manjackal and who enters the guardsman's thoughts planting fear there (I'm guessing this is his job. To make the fear spells more powerful?). He separates himself from the ghuls, but feeds on the soul of his "friend's" victims. The guardsman calls him a "shadow thing" which to me sounds like he's never actually seen this creature.
Now, fear-spells and pain spells... are these contributing to the guardsman's receding memory? Is Mouw Awa removing memories in order to heighten the fear and feed the spells more power? He gives them back as the guardsman dies, which makes me think he's manipulating the memories somehow. In which case, what in the world is he?
Before I close this prologue, my questions that I am afraid of the answers to:
1- If the guardsman watching the torture of the others was part of the fear spell, then is his death also feeding the fear spell of someone else?
2- How did the guardsman get there?
3- Does his dedication to protecting the Dhamsawaat affect the spell?
I feel really bad for guardsman to have lost every memory for nine days only to get them all back and, presumably, die forgetting everything that he'd been remembering the whole time!
What do you think?