Hum. I forgot how short many of these chapters got. Usually, I don’t let my chapters get this short in a book. I like longer chapters, and tend to be pretty stable in my chapter lengths. ELANTRIS, however, is an aberration. It has a good twenty chapters more than my average book, despite being shorter than many of them.
The line about a Svordish epic is, for those of you who are wondering, a reference to the monomyth. (I.e., the heroic archetype.) It’s ironic that I should include a nod to Campbell in my novel, since I rant about fantasy writers paying him too much heed in one of my critical pieces regarding ELANTRIS. (I posted it in the ELANTRIS resources section.)
The only other thing to say about this chapter is that it’s about where the Mad Prince subplot began in the original drafts of the book.
Though this is explained other places on the site, I should probably note it here. The Mad Prince, a character who has been cut from the book, dominated about three or four chapters in the last quarter of the manuscript. Originally, Raoden wasn’t an only child–he had a brother who was something of a madman. Eton–the Mad Prince–was sent away by his father to live in seclusion. He was mentioned several places in the text, foreshadowing the time when Hrathen decided to pull him back into Arelish politics to try and use him as a pawn.
In this chapter, the Mad Prince arrives in the area–though we don’t know it. Hrathen finds out that Eton has arrived, and goes to meet with him off stage. The reader doesn’t know what’s going on yet–you only know that Hrathen has some other little scheme he’s been cooking up since Sarene’s fall. (Remember, in the original draft of the book, Telrii was far less of a character. Hrathen gave up on him early in the book, after the plan to sink Iadon’s ships ended up being a wash.)