Rand is desperate to duplicate the Criollo recipe, but Yelena is unable to provide him with more beans so he’ll be transferred to MD-5, Brazell’s district.  This is a clue that Brazell is planning on occupying the Commander’s castle at some point.

When she returns to Valek’s suite, I have him waiting with his “sarcastic lecture” about her going to the kitchen without an escort (he’s falling for her).  I like what she thinks here, “…but logic and an empty stomach were like oil and water, they didn’t mix.”

Yet another problem arises as Yelena learns she is going to MD-5 with the Commander while Valek has been ordered to remain behind.

In this chapter, Yelena uses her magic to find what she calls her “zone of concentration.”  She senses her opponents moves before they actually move.  What she is doing is reading their thoughts, but she doesn’t know that yet.  Her use of magic drawls Irys and she gets her first lesson on how to use magic.  And Irys provides some information—the Commander’s thoughts are wide open, there’s magic flowing to the castle, Mogkan is really Kangom (Mogkan is almost Kangom spelled backward – I didn’t like Mognak or Nakgom so I fiddle with it and came up with Kangom).

Irys offers Yelena a chance to escape and it’s a pretty good plan. If you’d been paying attention, Yelena has thought about running away many times before this point.  And finally here’s her chance, but Yelena declines!  She crazy, right?  But Yelena realizes she cares for the Commander, Valek, Ari and Janco.  She can’t just leave when they might need her. Once again, she puts others first and I think it’s an admirable trait.

Irys also warns Yelena that if she doesn’t gain control of her magic, then, “someone else might grab it and use it, leaving you a mindless slave.”  Do tell – this is a bit of foreshadowing – remember Mogkan had been with Reyad when he’d done all those experiments with Yelena.

At the end of this chapter, Valek gives Yelena the butterfly statue he carved.  He reveals that he’d been thinking about her when he carved it. “Delicate in appearance, but with a strength unnoticed at first glance.”  Sigh!  That’s what he’d thought when he first met her – she was so small and fragile, but he soon learned she had an inner strength.

Here’s a picture of a butterfly pendant that Stacey Silver made for me:

Question 27 -  In Storm Watcher, what is the name of Megan’s favorite dog?

Don't answer this question in the comments!! This is another chance to win! There will be 31 questions for each chapter note published. Collect the answers to ALL the questions (or your best guess) and then enter to win a T-shirt at the end of the month (I'll post the Rafflecopter on the 31st).


  1. Very beautiful! I love the meaning behind why Valek chose the butterfly and it definitely defines Yelena! :)

    1. I love butterflys and didn't really realize that until I wrote the Study books. I'd like to get one tattooed on my arm, but am still debating!


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