Guys, Cassandra Clare’s Queen of Air and Darkness is released in seven (!) months! We are getting closer and closer to December 4 and the wait is becoming better yet also worse.
Cassie’s publisher Simon & Schuster recently launched the Shadowhunter Army, a monthly newsletter “containing important messages from Cassandra Clare, classified intelligence briefings, vital missions, and rewards for loyal service.” Shadowhunter Army members (soldiers?) were treated to an exclusive Queen of Air and Darkness snippet yesterday so I am sharing it with you today. This is is going to pull at your heartstrings so prepare yourselves!
In the reflection of the window glass, Kit saw the bedroom door open and Ty come in. He was still wearing his mourning clothes, though he’d taken off the jacket and was just in a black long-sleeve T-shirt. And Kit knew it was too late to run, that he cared about these people now, and specifically Ty.
“I’m glad you’re here.” Ty sat down on the bed and started unlacing his shoes. “I wanted to talk to you.”
The door was still slightly open and Kit could hear voices coming from the kitchen downstairs. Helen’s, Dru’s, Emma’s, Julian’s. Diana had gone back to her own house. Apparently she lived in a weapons store or something like that. She’d gone back to get some kind of tool she thought could fish the splinters out of Julian’s bleeding hands.
Ty’s hands were fine, but he’d been wearing gloves. Kit had seen Julian’s when he’d gone to rinse them out at the sink, and they’d looked like shrapnel had blown into his palms. Emma had stood nearby looking worried, but Julian had said he didn’t want an iratze, that it would just heal the skin closed over the bits of wood. His voice had sounded so flat, Kit had barely recognized it.
“I know how this is going to sound,” Kit said, turning so his back was against the cold glass. Ty was hunched over, and Kit caught the gleam of gold at his neck. “But you’re not acting the way I expected.”
Ty kicked his boots off. “Because I climbed up the pyre?”
“No, that was kind of actually the most expected thing you did,” said Kit. “I just…”
“I did it to get this,” Ty said, and put his hand to his throat. Kit recognized the gold chain and the slim disk of metal attached to it: Livvy’s locket, the one he’d helped her put on before the Council meeting. He vividly remembered her holding her hair aside as he fastened the clasp, and the smell of her perfume. His stomach lurched.
“Livvy’s necklace,” he said. “I mean, I guess that makes sense. I just thought you would…”
“Cry?” Ty didn’t look angry, but the intensity in his gray eyes had deepened. He was still holding the pendant. “Everybody is supposed to cry. But that’s because they accept that Livvy is dead. But I don’t. I don’t accept it.”
“I’m going to get her back,” said Ty.
*clutches chest* WHAT ON EARTH IS GOING ON? HOW DOES TY WANT TO DO THIS??
There’s no link to this snippet yet, but Simon & Schuster/Riveted by Simon Teen is “working on archiving back issues on Shadowhunters.com so new subscribers can read through them.” As soon as there is a link I’ll add it to this article.
Cassie also recently shared a snippet from an upcoming poster that fans who attend BookCon can get:
This looks really cool, but why do they have wings??
Last but not least, I do have another The Dark Artifices Q&A for you – don’t worry, it’s only three questions/answers this time. 😉
I have a question about Julian. In LOS we saw a bit of his darker side multiple times, but a big debate is about whether that was just his anti-hero/slightly immoral side naturally, or if the curse was influencing his decisions and thoughts. Emma also said that the curse would make them stronger before it made them destructive, so could that be why Emma wasn’t having thoughts as similar and questionable as Julian was, because that’s the way he is all the time?
C: The curse is absolutely affecting Emma and Julian in different ways, mosty because they are different people who respond to circumstances and stress in very different ways.
They both have some troubling coping skills that could be referred to as dark sides. Julian is prone to thoughtful calculation and deploying strategic untruths, whereas Emma is prone to bouts of violence, an obsession with revenge, and borderline masochism in her training that has left her permanently scarred. I think one reason that Julian’s behavior is noted as morally gray while Emma’s isn’t is simply because Emma lives in a society of warriors, a society in which the inclination and ability to commit physical violence is in many ways celebrated and valued. That isn’t to say that Shadowhunters don’t care about strategy, but it is to say that they have a society where Emma is celebrated for her single-mindedness, even singled out as the most promising young Shadowhunter of her generation, rather that looked upon with concern. No one looked at Emma when she was growing up and said, “Wow, this orphaned kid sure is beating the crap out of herself in training. She also has a wall dedicated to revenge and murder. Maybe she isn’t okay.” Instead her behavior was admired.
Julian’s scheming happens behind the scenes, and when it comes out, people are often unnerved by it, partially because it comes from an unexpected source. We tend to think of strategic thinking as something that comes with age and experience, so it’s startling to see a teenage boy scheming as Julian does. I understand why people inside and outside the books are concerned, because Julian has done some stuff that is morally gray: turning Anselm in for using dark magic (though, you know, he was: it’s like turning a drug dealer in for actually dealing drugs), threatening piskies, manipulating Annabel, lying to the Clave. But so far he hasn’t stepped over the line into doing anything actually villainous. He’s shown a potential for darkness, but so has Emma. It’s interesting to see people comment on Julian’s tendency to manipulate as a sign of the curse but not, say, Emma’s capacity for violence, which we see taken to an extreme level when she kills the faerie that was impersonating her father in LoS:
It didn’t finish its sentence. Emma had seized up Cortana and lunged forward, slamming the blade into the knight’s throat. It made a wet, squelching sound. Pus-colored blood sprayed from its wide mouth; it staggered back, but Emma followed, twisting the hilt of the knife.
Emma doesn’t just kill this faerie, she is so overcome by rage that she twists the knife in his body to cause pain as well as death. In Lady Midnight, Emma was already driven by an obsession with revenge. Her big plan then was to find the person who killed her parents and murder them. So is her violence with the knight affected by the curse, her upbringing, a natural reaction, or some of all those things? We don’t know yet because we don’t know how the curse operates yet and that in true in Julian’s case too. Would he have manipulated Annabel if not for the curse? Hard to say. He was in an awful position and trying to save his family and in fact, all Shadowhunters. What does it mean to make a bad choice when they are no good choices to be made?
Mostly what it means is that it tells you something about the characters making the choices. So we know that under duress, Julian turns to scheming and Emma turns to violence. Is either the best way to respond? No! Absolutely not! But this is a trilogy about people dealing with extremely difficult circumstances. If characters do not at first make mistakes and then learn from them, they are stagnant characters who do not grow — either to become better, like Gabriel Lightwood, or worse, like Nate Gray.
In sum, we can’t currently know how much of Emma’s violence and Julian’s scheming ways are affected by the curse and how much they grow naturally out of the anguishing emotional shock both characters endured as children. I’ve seen people say they wish Julian was still the way he was when he was twelve, uncomplicated and cheerful. Well, so does Julian, I bet! When he was twelve, Julian went through a damaging trauma and didn’t have a lot of support in the wake of it: in fact, crushing responsibility fell on him immediately and he had to struggle in secrecy just to keep his family alive and together. In LM and LoS, we see other characters noticing his capacity for manipulation and ruthlessness—the Seelie Queen, Kieran—but he hasn’t actually done anything all that terrible yet. We’re just worried he might because we know the awful position he’s in now that his worst fears are realized: Livvy is dead, and he stands on the precipice of the destruction of the rest of his family because of the curse.
“Emma also said that the curse would make them stronger”
The curse making them stronger doesn’t have anything to do with any mistakes either of them make — it’s simply a reference to their enhanced rune magic. The fact that Emma can heal Julian of deadly poison is an effect of the curse. The fact that they can melt stone together is an effect of the curse. It only works with and because they’re both in the same situation. As has been mentioned lots of times, one-sided parabatai love doesn’t jumpstart the curse or allow parabatai to access greater powers. Ironically in this case the curse is activated because they love each other: something good becoming the source of something dark. Is the curse also making them darker people, darker characters? We don’t know yet — we have to see how the curse plays out, and most importantly, learn why the curse works the way it does. And we will — though at what cost? 😉 (x)
I have a question I don’t know if it is a spoiler or not 🙂 will we know in queen of air and darkness the outcome of the romance between Julian and Emma and will we know who Cristina ends up with
C: I don’t think is a spoiler to say these plot lines will be resolved, just as Jace and Clarys romance was resolved at the end of TMI. TDA marks the end of these characters as protagonists, just as TMI did for Clary and Jace. And similarly, Emma and Julian’s mutual love and its consequences are a catalyst for changes not just in them but in the Shadowhunter world. Never before that we know of has anyone seen the parabatai curse play out – now we will.
I don’t think it’s a spoiler either to say we will find out who Cristina ends up with as I don’t know how I could keep it a secret. 🙂 (x)
how does Julian not realize Emma still loves him at the end of LM even tho she’s dating Mark? Because they were kissing by the attic in LoS before Emma said “Mark” and I was just confused how Julian didn’t realize Emma still had feelings for him. Did Julian just want to believe Emma loved Mark?
C: It’s established as early as CoHF that Emma once had a bit of a crush on Mark and that Julian is jealous:
Lately she’d been noticing a lot more things about Mark—the way the odd, faerie-influenced shape of his face was appealing, and the breadth of his shoulders under his T-shirts. She didn’t know why she was noticing those things, and she didn’t exactly like it. It made her want to snap at Mark, or hide, often at the same time.
“You’re staring,” Julian said, looking at Emma over the knees of his paint-splattered training gear. She snapped back to attention. “At Mark—again.” He sounded annoyed.
All throughout Lady Midnight, it’s clear that Julian is jealous of Mark in a way that he isn’t jealous of anyone else. Not just about Emma, but about Mark’s relationship with his brothers and sisters. Mark is everything Julian wishes he could be, but can’t be. Though he knows Mark has had a bad time of it these past years, he’s also resentful that the weight of all responsibility has fallen on him for so long.
“You have to understand,” she said. “Julian does everything for these children. Everything. I have never seen a brother who is so much like a parent. He cannot only tell them yes, he has to tell them no. He must deal in discipline and punishment and denial. Whereas you, you can give them anything. You can have fun with them.”
“Julian can have fun with them,” Mark said a little sulkily.
“He can’t,” said Cristina. “He is envious because he loves them but he cannot be their brother. He must be their father. In his mind, they dread him and adore you.”
“Julian’s jealous?” Mark looked astonished. “Of me?”
“It was surrounded by Mantid demons when we went, so we have pictures of the inside but not the outside,” Mark said as Ty went to get the photos. “As for the demons, Emma and I took care of them.” He winked at Emma. She smiled, and Julian felt that short, sharp jab of jealousy that came whenever Mark flirted with Emma. He knew it didn’t mean anything. Mark flirted in that way that faeries did, with a sort of courtly humor that had no real weight behind it. But Mark could flirt with Emma if he wanted. He had a choice, and faeries were notoriously fickle … and if Mark was interested, then he, Julian, had no right or reason to object. He should support his brother—wouldn’t he be lucky, after all, if his brother and parabatai fell in love? Didn’t people dream about the people who they loved loving one another?
Julian’s hands stroked her hair. “I know it’s ridiculous. But when you had a crush on Mark, when you were twelve, it was the first time I remember ever being jealous. It doesn’t make any sense, I know that, but the things we’re most frightened of, we can’t make ourselves dismiss them. If you and Mark ever … I don’t think I could come back from that.”
So why can’t Julian dismiss the idea that Emma has decided she wants Mark instead of him? Because of exactly what he said: the things we’re most frightened of, we can’t make ourselves dismiss them.This is his deepest fear and insecurity. It’s not like Emma picked the story about Mark at random. She did it because she knows Julian, and she tells Julian that she and Mark are together because it is the one thing she can think of that could make him stop loving her. Julian trusts her, and trusts her not to hurt him; though the parabatai bond makes it forbidden for them to be together, Julian knows perfectly well that Emma wouldn’t come up with a story that would hurt him so horribly unless it was true. She has literally no reason Julian knows about to lie to him this way. It wouldn’t occur to him she was lying, because he doesn’t know about the curse. We simply don’t assume people we love and trust are going to tell us horrendous lies for no reason, it’s wildly out of character for Emma, and indeed it’s something she would never do except that she knows about the curse — and Julian doesn’t. And because of his specific fears and insecurities regarding Mark, Julian is more willing to believe the lie than he would be had she chosen any one else to lie about. That’s why Emma chose Mark to lie to Julian about. He was the only one with whom her plan had a chance of working. It didn’t work because Julian wanted to believe it. It worked because he was afraid of it. (x)