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  • Complete Monster: necromancer Leso Varen.
    • Any Dasati who has risen to an influential position within their society will almost certainly be one as well.
  • Esoteric Happy Ending: At least for thousands of people from Midkemia in Riftwar Saga, who ended being slaves of the Tsurani during the invasion. Is not stated what happened to them and by Pug POV (and the statement of Asayaga) they either ended in hellish conditions dying like animals or as a sex toys of the conquerors. You know, a happy alliance between worlds.
    • Later books (in particular The Empire Trilogy and the circumstances of Kevin leaving Mara's service) seem to indicate that a prisoner exchange and release of Midkemian slaves back to their homeworld followed.
  • Idiot Plot: A last-minute plan change in Shadow of a Dark Queen arises when Roo remarks that the Emerald Queen will need to build a new armada before she can send an army halfway around the world, and Calis and company decide to try destroying Novindus' biggest shipyard to put her back several years. Until Roo spoke up, nobody thought to ask where she would get ships of the size and number she would need to carry out her inevitable invasion.
  • Mary Suetopia: The eledhel in Elvandar. They are all morally upstanding, all beautiful, all skilled. Their very home is a work of art, the mere sight of it sure to drive the most grizzled veteran to tears. They harbor no resentment for anyone, regardless of reason. Any elves who don't live as they do are considered unfortunate deviations from the ideal (as the term "The Returning" implies), but are generally happy to abandon their whole life's worth of teachings and values (and, in the case of the moredhel, family and friends too) and go live with the eledhel as soon as they realise how awesome they are. The glamredhel literally skip off to Elvandar as soon as they learn it exists. And of course, moredhel can go "good" and become eledhel, but no eledhel ever goes bad. Ever.
    • Note that there is ONE character in all the books who's been to Elvandar and has anything negative to say about it: Calis, Tomas and Aglaranna's son. He considers its static, unchanging ways to be "boring" and vastly prefers human company.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Duke James/Jimmy The Hand, in either sense of the word.
  • Moral Dissonance: Many issues concerning the moredhel. One particularly jarring scene involves two scouts deliberately leading a troop of Tsurani into a group of migrating moredhel women and children. After dooming them to be cut to shreds, they talk in surprise about how unexpectedly pretty those moredhel were for a race that's supposed to be evil. While this could be a realistic depiction of the sort of enemy dehumanisation typical in prolonged warfare, one of the scouts, Martin, has been raised by eledhel, whose moral uptightness is placed on a pedestal many times in the series. However, the Moredhel are not called the Brotherhood of the Dark Path for nothing - signs at least point to that Path being what keeps them from re-joining their kin. Ambition Is Evil, much?


  1. Taken at face value in the books, the Returning is held to be miraculous by the eledhel, and considered the result of foul witchcraft and mind-manipulation by the moredhel, not to mention a great tragedy. The Returning happens when a moredhel is ready and chooses to let go of their old war-like ways and abandon the Dark Path. No non-moredhel character in the books ever voices the opinion that the Returning is anything but a great thing to happen - not even the ones doing the Returning, despite how painful it must be for them. On the other hand, there are several details in the books that make it sound a bit suspicious. First there's the question of how and why a moredhel with no prior exposure to the ways of the eledhel (and no way to even know what those ways even are, exactly) should naturally decide to abandon the entirety of the world-view they've been raised with and forsake their family and responsibilities and go buddy up with their ancestral enemies. Then there's the process of Returning, which involves the affected moredhel starting to act odd and distant over a span of years, culminating in a single, sudden and, it seems, inevitable switch to eledhel, at which point they run for Elvandar - in other words, something that doesn't look like the result of natural changes in personality, but instead an affliction of sorts. On that note, there's the fact that the Returning is attributed (by moredhel and eledhel alike) to the "Call of Elvandar", i.e. its magic, which, as known from the books, is at least significantly shaped by the Spellweavers (the eledhel mages). There is evidence from Magician that the Spellweavers can discreetly manipulate a person's personality and suppress certain impulses, as they did with Tomas. (Them doing it en-masse would also explain how they can keep Elvandar a peaceful utopia, despite the moredhel and the eledhel being the same people.) Plus, trying to resist the Call is physically painful. And lastly there's the problem that the Call seems to naturally target more goodish/less Dark Path-heavy moredhel. Since a moredhel who Returns is removed from the moredhel population, the Returning is obviously getting in the way of the moredhel becoming less evil as a people. To support this, in the case of both of the Returned moredhel we get to know in the books, it's quite likely that the moredhel people would have been better off if they'd stayed. On the other hand, all pure-blooded elves seems magically drawn to Elvandar, not just the moredhel, but even the star elves, whose existence was unknown to the Spellweavers, suggesting that this may not actually have been a result of deliberate brainwashing.
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