Yelena’s on her way to Brazell’s manor house.  At the first stop for the night, she translates the symbols etched on her switchblade’s handle.  There are six silver markings.  In this graphic, designed by my friend Daniel, which I used for T-shirts, there are only three.  I cheated – I decided to keep the switchblade simple, that I would have three symbols, but each one represents two words.  As you can see, the last one has an infinity sign in it meaning forever.  I guess I could say the other three symbols are on the other side, but in Chapter 28 it’s pretty clear that they are all in a row.

A secret rendezvous turns tragic.  When she’s in the woods with Rand, she reaffirms that her first instinct is not to run, but to stand and fight.  In this scene, Rand is supposed to betray her yet again, but he can’t do it and ends up sacrificing himself to save her life.  He asks for forgiveness and she grants it.  He redeemed himself and I’m glad.  I liked Rand – he was a conflicted character with a number of quirks.  I never kill off a character lightly.  The story dictates the course of events and this was a natural progression.  I didn’t plan for him to die – you all know me - I never plan :).

And then, Yelena kicks butt.  She’s not going to be a victim and has no choice but to defend herself.  She crushes the first guy’s windpipe – no hesitation because she knows there are more.  It’s kill or be killed and she doesn’t have time to weigh the consequences of her actions.

The fight with the second goon is in close and personal.  It’s realistic and bloody.  I always say I write fantasy because I like swords and horses.  Using a gun is too easy – it’s too easy to take a life.  While with a knife or sword, you have to be close enough to look into your opponent’s eyes and smell their fear.  I’m not against gun ownership as I have two good friends who are responsible gun owners, but I really wish someone would figure out how to keep them out of the hands of criminals and those crazy people who go into schools, malls, and theaters.

Valek arrives – he didn’t obey the Commander’s order, but he is beginning to suspect the Commander isn’t really all there.  So technically, he didn’t disobey the Commander.  And as they near Brazell’s manor, it’s obvious the Commander is not himself.  Yelena knows it’s going to be bad when she arrives at the manor house.  She has come full circle.  Hiding her backpack, she uses her lock picks to secure her hair into a bun.  I don’t have long hair – I have curly hair that grows out like a bush and defies gravity so I usually keep it shoulder-length.  A friend of mine had her long straight hair twisted up into a knot and held in place with chop sticks – I was fascinated by this and thought if she can use chop sticks, then Yelena can use her lock picks.

The ending isn’t a surprise.  Brazell’s been waiting to kill Yelena for a long time, but they do need to wait to keep Valek in line until all their plans are in place.

Question 28 – In Touch of Power, where did Kerrick finally admit he cared for Avry?

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).


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