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Speculation (and One Spoiler) Regarding Melanie Rawn's "Exiles" Series

Updated on August 4, 2015

The Spoiler

The next paragraph has what is reputed to be a spoiler from a fan who supposedly asked Melanie Rawn a question about the series (though I wasn't there, so this is merely what other people have reported), so if you don't want to read it, skip to the following section, which contains the speculation-only section.

The story is that at a convention, a fan asked Rawn if we would find out who Collan's parents were in "The Captal's Tower" (the planned third book of the series). Rawn reportedly said that the interesting part isn't who his parents were, but who his grandparents were. So since Gorsha said that Sarra didn't lose her first baby because of any genetic weakness on Collan's part that would seem to indicate that Collan is a Blood. Now we need to look at Bloods in the generation before their parents' generation.

There really aren't a whole lot of them that we know of by name. There's Gorsha, of course, and his sister Gorynna, and Jeymian Renne, Allynis Ambrai, Aidil Alvassy, Enis Dombur, Telo Ambrai, Gerrin Ostin, Jener Ostin, and Taigrel Ostin. I must be missing someone because this all adds up to Col being very closely related to Sarra, like a second cousin in several different ways. I doubt that Gorsha would have let Sarra marry another descendant of Alynnis Ambrai or Gerrin Ostin, so they are out. So that leaves Gorsha, Gorynna, Jeymian, Aidil, Enis, Telo, Jener, and Taigrel. That's three women and five men. Jeymian doesn't seem to think of Sarra as a granddaughter, so let's eliminate her. Since we need two grandmothers, that leaves Gorynna and Aidil. And including Gorynna probably means that Gorsha is out. So now we have Enis Dombur, Jener Ostin, Taigrel Ostin, and Telo Ambrai. Probably only one of the Ostin brothers (Gerrin), is in there, so that eliminates both Jener and Taigrel. So either Enis or Telo is in. Of course, they keep saying how one of the Dombur traits is blue eyes and Collan does have striking blue eyes, so Enis could very well be in. Then we could have two married couples, which would make some sort of sense -- Aidil and Enis and Gorynna and Telo. However the only child we know of of Gorynna and Telo, Gerrin Desse, is only 12 years older than Col. Remember, too, that the Crossroads of St. Feleris gave Sarra black-and-turquoise clothing, and Collan green-and-gold. So green and gold must be Collan's true Name colors, just as black and turquoise are Sarra's. Unfortunately, as far as I can tell, Rawn has not seen fit to tell us what Name has green and gold as its colors. Additionally, either Gorynna or Gorsha more or less has to be in, since Col was able to break Gorsha's Wards, something that only family should have been able to do.

The Speculation

Unrelated to that spoiler, I also believe that Collan was Mageborn, despite Gorsha's certainty that he wasn't. Remember that back at the beginning of "The Ruins of Ambrai," Collan rejected a gift "utterly." Considering the timing, that "gift" was most likely the Mage gift. This makes sense when you remember that Col was able to break Gorsha's Wards and take away Glenin's ability to kill. I wonder, too, if there is some way for Collan to have survived, because of several of the things said at the beginning, like that this "gift" would eventually seem meager when it was compared to that of others with the same gift. If all he ever did with it was find the twins that one time and then remove Gorsha's wards and kill himself, there really will be no time for him to compare it to anything. We are also told that he visits the remains of the cottage at Maslach Gorge later and finds a new cottage and a family living there, but the last time we see that area, Cailet is visiting Maslach Gorge and finds nothing but the burned-out cottage. Col was already 30 by then, and it wasn't that much longer before he fathered the twins. I guess he could have visited it during the Minstrelsy period, though, even though it wasn't mentioned.

What will happen in the future?

Right off the bat, I'm hoping that Josselin will turn out to be the "him" that Cailet will love more than she loved Taig. I love their interaction, particularly in the scene where they take the newbies to see the pakkas. And it makes sense that Josselin's reluctance to go through the listing ritual is because he's afraid that she will discover his love for her (notice he doesn't deny that he loves Cai when Sarra asks -- he just said that it would be stupid of him to do so). I was kind of weirded out by the age difference, but the book does say that young men frequently marry older women. In fact, Cailet has to be quite a bit younger than Mirya Witte, since Mirya is somewhere around Sarra's age, if not older. It is hinted at that Josselin may have been a bower lad at one point. If so, he may well know how to help Cailet through her shame over her disfigurement.

I've always believed that the smaller light that follows the Ladymoon is some kind of space station. The fact that the Lenfellians came from Earth originally is mentioned in the books, even if only obliquely, through mentions that there are animals such as dolphins and horses on Lenfell. Hopefully the solution to their problems won't come from the space station, but it may figure in some way.

Related to that previous thought, I wonder where the galazhi came from. Lisivet Mikleine mentioned that some words (the names of the animals that we know to be native to Lenfell) come from descriptions of the animals in question, while others, such as "horse" and "dolphin" don't. Well, galazhi isn't a description, so they must have come from Earth. I would think that they are mutated gazelles, but the jump form "gazelle" to "galazhi" seems larger than from "coyote" to "kyyo," or from "pegasus" to "pakkasos."

The Mage Guardians and the Malerrisi will have to put their ongoing feud away for good. Perhaps it will be a Romeo and Juliet type solution where Jored and Taigan can't deny their love for one another but can't be together, and their misery and/or tragic deaths cause the two sides to come to a détente. I have also read speculation that the reason that Sarra had twins is so that one could become Captal and the other First Lord. In this situation, of course, the First Lord and Captal would kind of have to find ways to work together to their mutual benefit.

I think that following the détente between the Mage Guardians and the Malerrisi, they will work together to fix the Waste. They did the damage together; it just stands to reason that they would have to put the land to rights together, too.

I hope that Cailet finds some proof that other Captals have lost part of the Bequest over time. They must have, since the knowledge of how Ladders were created was lost long enough ago that even Gorsha didn't know how it was done. Even if creation of Ladders was a talent, one would think that maybe the Bequest would include information on identifying people with the talent. Or at least some hint of how Ladders were created, or that they are naturally occurring. Or a big sign saying, "Don't bother trying to create them, it's (a natural occurrence/a talent/whatever)" Or something. But it apparently it is just a mystery, which just doesn't make sense if the Bequest has always been passed down in its entirety.

At some point we have to find out where the imperfect children have been going to grow up safely. Strangely, I wonder if the Malerrisi will turn out to have the information. After all, some of those imperfect children may well have skills or traits or a heritage that the Malerrisi need for their plan.

Also, we have to solve the riddle of the Wraithenbeasts. Is there really such a thing? Or is someone killing people who come too close to something they aren't supposed to find? Or could it be a combination of the two? Maybe the beasts are like guard dogs? Maybe what they're protecting is the place the imperfect children are sent to?

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    • Olivia-O profile image
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      Olivia-O 24 months ago

      I suspect that you're right. But that doesn't mean that we can't speculate about where she might have been going, does it?

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      ZshadeZ 24 months ago

      At this point if she actually releases the book I'll eat a few dozen hats. I gave up on that happening over a decade ago.