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"I am Runya Sulemar. Come with me to the razor's edge. We'll choose our fates with another dance, striding the river red." - Runya Sulemar, introducing herself to some Ratadoni Ranida lizard-men.
The Greenwater is a series of novels by Thrythlind, two parts of which are written, centering around a backwoods swamp "skinner" named Tennel Grimbeck. As the story progresses, a lygiel Roquen named Runya Sulemar shares equal importance with Tennel.
The third part is in process
The story is set in an unnamed fantasy world within the borders of a nation referred to as "The Confederacy". The first book details the travels of Tennel from the village he lives near to the edges of the titular region, the Greenwater.
The Greenwater is an inland sea covering roughly the same area as Texas with unknown depths. Out of the sea grow gigantic trees with trunks large enough that small towns can be carved out of the layers of dead bark on the outside and with branches so thick that a column of troops can comfortably walk down them as if they were a road. These trees dominate most of the area.
The Greenwater is split into five general regions: the High Branches, the Middle Branches, the Low Branches, the Mesas and the Dim
the Mesas are five large, plateau like islands that hold the majority of the region's civilization. Until the Ffolk (humans) arrived, people (with the exception of the goblin-like Lamta/Rik (self-name/Ffolk-given name)) did not live in the trees themselves, but only used them for travel. The northern most Mesa, still unsettled at the time, was granted to the Ffolk by the dominate species when they first arrived. None of the other Mesa's come into the current story, but Ratadoni, a mesa ruled by a tyrannical kingdom of lizard/dragon-men, is mentioned as an adversary.
the Middle Branches are the tangled mass of natural pathways and tunnels that can be traveled through to get from tree to tree or mesa to mesa. There is lots of wildlife in these trees and since the Ffolk started building outposts into them, scattered populations in the north.
the High Branches are incredibly tangled, like untamed wilds, usually with branches that are not thick enough or strong enough to serve as primary roadways.
the Low Branches are isolated and solitary and usually serve as a way for people to get from the Mesas to the Middle Branches.
the Dim is the area of scattered small islands in the dark places under the canopy of the giant trees. Only individual families live there and it is mostly a predator's paradise. The exception being the "Hinoitaur" race which makes its colonies in the hardest to find islands.
The plot begins with Tennel Grimbeck having a dream about a rogue "alligator" that killed his two closest friends, a married couple of fellow hunters. Due to the fact that it was known or rumored he was in love with the woman of the pair, the people in the nearby village start suspecting him of arranging the death, even to using dark powers to do it. In addition, in speaking to a taxidermist friend, he confirms that the "alligator" was actually more like what the friend had heard described as a "Greenwater crocodile". As such, he takes his substantial savings and heads off to volunteer for the militia being sent to reinforce the Greenwater colonies after the end of a war with some sort of aquatic race (not yet encountered in the story).
Note from the Author: I tend to use these pages as sounding boards for ideas as well as a form of self-promotion. For my original fictions, I do most of my troping on my own files offline, because I don't want to spoil anything...as I am want to do when ranting about my stories. However, currently most of the entries were done by me as part of a way of figuring out how to summarize the setting. From here on out, however, this page will be only occasionally updated by me specifically. (Though I might run a promotion that involves troping my stuff.)
Tropes Found In The Greenwater Novels:
- Action Girl: Runya Sulemar.
- Boldly Coming: The Confederacy spreads by moving into an area, setting up trade posts and marrying into the culture until such time as they successfully assimilate it.
- This has resulted in some racial anxiety in the Greenwater.
- Cool Horse: Tennel's riding cat, Laneku.
- Dark Action Girl: The Weaver, also a case of Evil is Sexy if the pics are anything to go by.
- Famous Ancestor: Laneku is from a famous line of riding cats.
- Face of the Band: Jorvald.
- Fan Service: Though only minimal attention is made to the fact, the first fight scene in the prologue is between a stark naked Runya Sulemar and twelve Ranida.
- Fantastic Slurs: Runya's brother, in a flashback dream sequence, says "We birds will lead you, and you snakes can kill anything in the way." At the time, she was insulted by such "vulgar" references to their race. (Males being bird-men and females being snake-women)
- Fiery Redhead: partially subverted and played straight in Runya, who is very energetic and passionate, but not prone to letting her anger get the best of her.
- Functional Magic: Four kinds
- Ether-Crafting, which is described as a combination of long, time consuming rituals or the crafting of magical items.
- Prayer, praying to an immortal being in hopes that a) they happen to be listening at the time; and b) they decide to go ahead and help you. Usually subtle and difficult to tell whether anything magical actually happened or not.
- Weaving, which is the control of the body, elements and animals. Described sort of as dancing, martial artist druids.
- Blood Magic, inborn powers inherited due to descending from immortal beings.
- Half-Human Hybrid: The Ffolrik are a cross of Ffolk and Feyrik/Malana. This is the first time the Ffolk have encountered a race that is significantly different from them in terms of physiology.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Tennel seems to go out of his way to piss people off, but at the same time is protective of others and respectful of nature.
- I Work Alone: Tennel, so very much Tennel. At least he wishes.
- Knight Errant: Runya Sulemar is a roquen, something similar to a holy warrior, of the hinoitaur people.
- Knight in Sour Armor: After being lost for more than a year, Runya has started to doubt, not her ideals, but whether or not she is still following them.
- Master Swordsman: Dobrek
- Mysterious Past: Dobrek, aside from being a "duelist" (read assassin), makes several comments that imply a diverse history.
- Naive Newcomer: Morriga Dagnon is at first very eager to prove that her town Drenon is still home to the best archers in the world but hasn't lived much outside her palace.
- In some ways, Runya is also this.
- Non-Mammal Mammaries: Justified by the fact that all sentient races, including dragons, are the descendants of especially powerful Ffolk/humans which ascended to a higher plane of existence and thus every race: hinoitaur, malana, ranida, rik, etc are essentially mammals despite appearing reptilian and even being mostly egg-layers. The only exception to this are the Greenwater Serpents which were created by the Dragons, and which are the only race that cannot interbreed with the others. This can now be considered All in The Manual since it has migrated from my private files to this webpage.
- Not Using the Z Word: two main instances
- The term "magic" is never used.
- For the most part, the author avoids using gender-specific titles.
- the Ffolk refer to their aristocrats as "Peer" instead of "Lord" or "Lady" with "Mipeer" replacing "Milord" and "Milady"
- Lampshaded early on when Runya notes that "Man" is just the word the Ranida use to describe the Ffolk (humans). - AN: in addition, the term "Man" comes from a phrase that means "has no path", so the term is a very insulting one for the Ffolk/humans.
- Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Played both straight and subverted as most of the races of the Greenwater seem partially reptilian. Some of these are possibly averted given the statement in the spoiler under Non-Mammal Mammaries above.
- subverted: The females of the hinoitaur race are naga-like snake women (the males are talon-footed/winged humanoids with feathers rather than hair) and yet the race is respected as wise and valiant.
- played straight: The Ranida of the Ratadoni nation are regarded as dragon-worshiping fanatics prone to tyranny, though Runya doesn't assume they're enemies until such time as she realizes they're from Ratadoni.
- played straight: Likewise, the lamta are shown as monkeyish, lizard people with a barbaric sort of frenzied violence.
- subverted: the Malana (called "Feyrik" by the Ffolk) are visibly scaled as well, though from a short distance they can be mistaken for darkskinned humans
- subverted: Nest Serpents, in addition to being the primary means of defending the eggs of the various reptilian sentient races, are described as being rather affectionate pets.
- played oh so horribly straight: Mal Vipers, which were bred to drive people insane enough to destroy each other and especially their own young.
- Sergeant Rock: Sergeant Rinswite