Maybe the Casts are as tired of the series as I am at this point because this is the shortest introduction I’ve seen in them. They thank theuir publisher, everyone in Tulsa and their agent. Though they earn a special place in writers hell when they say “we heart you” to their agent.
Fuck you, Cast. You can say love like a goddamned adult. Unless a harpy is merely the larval stage of some other Stygian horror. Then it makes sense that they’d express emotion like some ancient lich’s idea of teen slang.
We start off with Lenobia who’s asleep and having a dream that’s familiar. It’s the dream of back story past. PCK has decided that, yes, they will try and develop her into a full fledged character. If only because the elder Cast needs to see herself somewhere in this series or she’ll lose interest and go back to the lair she hollowed out in the corpse of Stoker.
Lenobia is dreaming of her long lost love, Martin Sheen. She met him on a cargo ship between France and America. He had commented on the difference between them, one being white the other being black. Really? So the biggest difference between them is the pigmentation between them and not the fact that she’ll live for a few centuries while he has the life expectancy of a feeder rat in the tank of a ball python?
Martin had a Creole accent which meant he talks like Gambit as done by Youtube parody. Martin had given her a pouch that was strong “gris-gris” and would protect her. Because anyone who sounds like they should have a restaurant famous for its craw-fish gumbo also believes in voodoo or hoodoo.
Lenobia’s dream skips forward to the memory where Martin takes her out of a burning building. He tells her that the world isn’t ready for them which makes her sad. Then he grabs the “evil human” who tried to take her as a slave and takes him into the burning building. While she assumed he died, I’m betting he went on to have a long and fulfilling live with someone who isn’t a self righteous vampire.
With that over, Lenobia wakes up and immediately tells her horse that everything is fine. Apparently she’s psychically linked to the horse. Which is something PCK just adds to everything and everyone. I’m surprised that Stark doesn’t also have a psychic link to his bow or his magic sword. She then wanders over to a rocking chair to ponder on whether or not Cowboy is a reincarnation of Martin.
The lesson here kids is that the only person you can truly love is a designated soul mate. And if they die, god will stuff their soul into a new body so they can love you again later in life. That way you don’t have to wrestle with the emotional burden of learning that you can love someone else.
Lenobia reminds herself that she vowed to never take a human lover but it might be time to screw some vampire. She figures that what she needs is a nice, distracting anonymous dicking to get over Cowboy. She then starts to go over some of the local warriors in her head as if all that she has to do is pick a cock and jump on it. Which is incredibly sexist. I would have if they’d added the stipulation that she was thinking of eligible vampires. Instead she’s just like ‘hmm, which one of them is prettiest?’ the same way someone would pick a car or a speedboat.
Luckily for some of the married and attractive meat shields, Lenobia stops this pretty quick. Because she can’t stop thinking about Cowboy and how much she’s attracted to him. Plus if he really was Martin reborn then she wouldn’t have to suffer any sort of guilt. This is followed by more whining about how she’s been grieving for two hundred years.
Lenobia then calms down her horse, again, and decides that there won’t be anything between her and Cowboy. She’ll tell him tomorrow that they can’t be anything more than coworkers and she’ll get over her attraction to him.
Over to Neferet who’s calling to a cat called Shadowfax. Ha! That’s a thing which I also recognize. I identify with this story that much more! She’s thinking about how she’s done pretty well at this whole chaos thing at the school. It’ll be even better once Stevie is sad because Rephy is dead. Sure it would be better if Stevie herself were dead or one of the other slaves of Zoey but Rephy being dead is just as good.
Neferet grabs the cat and kills him though she almost feels bad about it. Once he’s dead, she chants some mumbly-jumbly and lets the darkness feed. Now that he’s fed, Jackie will let his minions tear apart all the vampires limb from limb and rid the world of these boring creatures.
Yeah, so what was the point of rewinding the story to just before the end of the last book, PCK? Do we really care who’s cat Neferet killed to make Heath charge at Rephy? Because we care even less about the dreams Lenobia has. Why not turn the perspective over to the lunch crew as the chart out this week’s menu?
One of Neferet’s threads of darkness is apparently clumsy because it knocked over a gas lantern by the stables. Wait, what? I thought the darkness was always hanging around Neferet and she’s in the shed. So how and why did a random shadow tentacle wander out to knock over a lantern?
It just did and of course it’s starting a fire in the stables. Gee, is Cowboy going to rescue Lenobia just like Martin did? If he dies just after saying ‘mon cherie, I told you I’d be back’ I’ll stab Lenobia to death myself.
Lenobia wakes up, realizing the fire isn’t just in her dream. Cowboy is already shooing horses out of the stables before running inside. Lenobia is determined to not let this coincidental accident have the same outcome as before. She then runs into the building after Cowboy.
Lenobia runs in and there’s smoke everywhere. She yells out to Cowboy, telling him to get out and call 911. Someone else says they already did. It’s one of the undeadlings, Nicole in case you care. She says something about how she wanted to save a particular horse because she like it. Lenobia uses her equine magic to calm it down and sends the girl on her way.
So, stupid question here, PCK. Why do they use flammable lanterns in an incredibly flame prone place like the stables? This isn’t set in the eighteen hundreds, it’s two thousand nine(within the story time line). There’s a little something called alternating current championed by a guy named Tesla, Casts. Long story short, it makes lighting possible with a much lower chance of fire.
Also, where the fuck is the fire suppression system? We’re talking about very rich vampires who spare no expense on anything else. So why didn’t they spend the few bucks to install a sprinkler system on the off chance that something within the horse barn ignited. I suppose that would require there be something obviously flammable like hay around.
Cowboy is in the back near the flames. Lenobia tells him to open the stall doors which he does. She then uses her psychic powers to tell the horses to get out. They leave then she goes back in for Cowboy. He tells her to get out, she says no and kicks him to the ground and drags him out.
There are fire fighters everywhere or, as PCK says, “human firemen”. Why there needs to be a distinction as to their humanity and gender is beyond me. Lenobia yells at the EMTs when they try to give her oxygen because she doesn’t need it, Cowboy does. Someone hands her a goblet of bloody wine which is basically just a healing potion around here.
The EMS folks go to take him off to the hospital and they have a conversation. Lenobia assures him his horse will be fine and that she’ll look after him. For someone who’s just suffered a bit of serious smoke inhalation, he has little trouble having a conversation with her. Though PCK does constantly tell us how raspy he sounds in between it.
The captain of the department then wanders over and asks who’s in charge. Lenobia demands to know where Neferet is and nobody can find her. He follows Lenobia as she gives orders around. Then he offers to take Nicole to the hospital. She declines, saying their infirmary is better equipped for prepubescent vampires. He says their physiology is different but don’t worry, he’s nor racist against vampires. He knew a guy who changed and still liked him.
Shaylin then shows up, saying she saw Neferet. She was apparently just out and about staring at trees because she used to be blind. Shaylin saw Neferet in the nearby shed and that Neferet looked “dark”. Lenobia doesn’t like the sound of that but doesn’t decide to go investigate.
Erik wonders about Nicole and if she was responsible for the fire. Lenobia says she doesn’t think so, Erik says she’s normally with Dallas and Shaylin says she’s not with her right now. Shaylin also says that Nicole’s colors are changing because she can see auras. Then Thanatos shows up to dramatically demand to know what atrocity has been committed.