Author Topic: PC082: The Twa Corbies  (Read 12916 times)

stePH

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Reply #25 on: January 02, 2010, 05:22:43 PM
I didn't care for the title, especially since I didn't know what "twa" or "corbies" meant in the slightest until I read the poem, and since neither word was used within the story I didn't get any closer to understanding while listening.

I had some idea that "corbie" meant "blackbird" from having read Charles deLint's Someplace to Be Flying, wherein the "animal People" Raven, the Crow Girls, Jack Daw, and Maggie the magpie were classified as "corbae" (while the fox character whose name eludes me was considered a "canid".) 

"Twa" was lost on me, though.

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Scattercat

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Reply #26 on: January 02, 2010, 08:21:09 PM
Where the story fell short for me, however, is the plot. Specifically, I had two major problems with it. The first is that I didn't understand how the murder took place. It was established that you cannot enter the town without passing a guarded gate. But yet, the lord seemed to be able to be able to enter town, get a ring from his wife, and leave town dying without anyone seeing him. Or did she somehow kill him on the way to town? But if so, why did she do it so close to the town? And if he was riding to town, why tie the spell to his signet ring, which I assume he wouldn't be wearing on the road? I'm either missing something here, or the murder itself makes no sense whatsoever.

I think it went like this:

1) Dude comes home, expecting cheer and nookie.  Keeps on the down-low on account of being all tired what with war and such.
2) Dude puts on cursed ring, gets all sick-feeling.
3) Wife gets pissed her spell didn't work right.
4) Wife sends Dude away, probably under some concealment.
5) Dude dies on the road, unable to remove the cursed ring and probably considerably bummed.
6) Random guards at the gate don't know any of this due to being about as close to the bottom of the totem pole as can be, not to mention the Wife's lover seemed to be a guard-type person who likely had some of his guardsmen in on the conspiracy.

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The second problem I had was the behavior of the birds, especially at the end. The narrator gets the power to talk to birds, but he also seems to have the superpower of letting birds around him act non-bird like.

Well, it's a fairy-magic gift.  Maybe compulsion to obey is part of it (or maybe just a tendency for them to feel very protective/friendly toward him.  Like Aquaman.)  I dunno.  Maybe the evil magic pissed the birds off. 

Not gonna argue that the character is way stronger than the plot, here, but I'm willing to shrug away magic as being, well, magic. 



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Reply #27 on: January 08, 2010, 05:44:16 PM
What a fun story! I loved the narrator's exasperation as he tries to extract himself from the situation, but dang it, he's just...too..good-hearted to let things lie. And the ending was perfect--it's a happy one, sort of. The image of him nursing the birds back to health, forced to listen to their inane chatter, was too perfect for words. Hilarious!

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ckastens

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Reply #28 on: January 25, 2010, 02:04:03 PM
Great retelling with a lot of humor mixed in. And I should definitely thank Podcastle for publishing two of my favorite short fiction writers (Marie Brennan and Tim Pratt) in the same month!



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Reply #29 on: January 27, 2010, 02:23:22 PM
I liked the story itself. I didn't think I would at first, but the author stayed away from explaining the fantasy world, which helped the pacing quite a lot. I also liked the ending -- how, even after all this, he still feels ambivalent about the gift he basically extorted out of the pixie he caught seven years ago.

I enjoyed the reading.

I'm curious if Rachel's introduction was supposed to be related to the story -- usually the intros are at least tangentially-related -- or it was just "here's something cool I found and I wanted to share it with everyone".

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Reply #30 on: January 27, 2010, 04:45:15 PM
I'm curious if Rachel's introduction was supposed to be related to the story -- usually the intros are at least tangentially-related -- or it was just "here's something cool I found and I wanted to share it with everyone".

Hrm, I don't know for sure, but I took it as the above *and* Eli Stone is blessed/cursed to hear weird things nobody else can kind of like the protagonist in the story.

I have no idea if that's what Rachel was going for, but that's what I got from it  :)


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Reply #31 on: January 27, 2010, 05:10:33 PM
I'm curious if Rachel's introduction was supposed to be related to the story -- usually the intros are at least tangentially-related -- or it was just "here's something cool I found and I wanted to share it with everyone".

Hrm, I don't know for sure, but I took it as the above *and* Eli Stone is blessed/cursed to hear weird things nobody else can kind of like the protagonist in the story.

I have no idea if that's what Rachel was going for, but that's what I got from it  :)

I saw the same line of reasoning, but I wouldn't assume that every intro will necessarily play into the story.

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Reply #32 on: January 28, 2010, 07:54:53 PM
It ended up working quite well, and it just goes to show that you can never take anything in writing as a hard and fast rule.

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yicheng

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Reply #33 on: February 01, 2010, 10:54:15 PM
Cute story, if a bit predictable.  It was entertaining and well-paced.  The reader did a great job with the voices.