RiTS: Forever Knight: A Stirring of Dust, Chapter 8

RitS post 7 of 21

A lot of thinking in this chapter, guys. I’ll try to spice it up with memes.

We begin with someone thinking about how women are incomprehensible, and it’s so much easier to be a vampire than to be a human. Oh, it’s Lacroix thinking all this, capping it off with a stirring rendition of “Let A Woman In Your Life”:

Women, emotions caused by women, had ways of complicating the simplicity of one’s life. If one let them.

Pictured: Lacroix

Pictured: Lacroix

Allow me to eyeroll for a minute. (As if you guys expected anything else.) This feels like weird characterization of Lacroix, in my opinion. In the show, he’s always seemed quite fond of women, and certainly until Vachon, he was the only male character that treated women like people instead of like – well, women. Nick’s always sort of off-puttingly “chivalrous”, and that continues in the novel, but Lacroix struck me as far more egalitarian. I don’t like this sort of “human women are from Venus” bit that Sizemore sticks in his brain, and I don’t think it fits.

He goes on to think about emotions – how inconvenient they are, how he supposes everyone has them – and then about Tammy, and how he sent her away, but knows she won’t go. And we’re back to Lacroix being sort of creepy about her, but at least he knows he’s being creepy, and that he should keep trying to send her away. See? Even that goes to my previous point. He knows she’s not grown, not really a woman who can come to him on an equal footing – and therefore, he keeps sending her away, because he knows he’s not good for her.

Some dude who thinks women are crazy, PMS-ridden space aliens (or whatever it is that misogynists think of us) would never put that much thought into the well-being of one.



It’s Lacroix’s flashback, this time. Janette’s come to him to ask him to do something about Nicholas after Nick’s little zombie-killing temper-tantrum. There’s a little description of Radu’s guest rooms: Turkish, opulent, covered in silver. Everything is covered in silver; Radu has a thing about the moon, and there is a lovely line about it:

To Radu, the moon was a beautiful woman draped in disks of silver.

It just struck me. I’m not sure how one is draped in disks, but I liked it, anyway.

So Janette’s bugging Lacroix, and Lacroix is all, “But you totes want to stay here with this dude. OMG, is he THE ONE?”

Janette basically shrugs. Lacroix notices all the silver she’s wearing, and he says, “A beautiful woman draped in silver. Does he worship you, then?” and FINALLY, I understand why Janette is spending any time at all with Radu. I don’t buy for a second that she loves him, or that she’s even terribly fond of him. But I will totally buy that she gets off on the power she has over him because he thinks he loves her. That shit is better than heroin.

So I’ve heard. I haven’t experienced heroin.


They argue about what she wants Lacroix to do – should he punish Nicholas? No, she says, but Radu deserves an apology. Why? Just because he does, and then she rushes off. Lacroix’s getting close to a truth she perhaps doesn’t want to disclose: either she wants to leave him and Nick, and will stay with Radu to do it, or she really believes Radu is in the right and thinks Lacroix should think that, too. I’m more partial to the former than the latter.

Anyway, Lacroix agrees with her: Something must be done.

About Radu.


Tammy is listening to a taped episode of the Nightcrawler and thinking that Lacroix didn’t mean it when he sent her away. She’ll go back, eventually. She has to: he’s the first person who’s made her feel…anything.

She was stuck in foster care, and then she got a bland job in an office. She doesn’t connect with her peers, and while she has sex, she never finds in it the connection she needs. She finds that with Lacroix, though. She needs to be near him. She wants “to be a good girl for him”.

“Though I had to be bad to get your attention. I’ll have to be bad to come back. Then you’ll let me be good for you. You’ll take care of me….”

Now. This book is copyrighted 1997, before 50 Shades and its attendant correctional articles about BDSM (because, yeah. Those books are not even vaguely acquainted with accuracy), so maybe Sizemore didn’t know how this reads. But it reads…not creepy, I don’t want to say that, but certainly it reads like a damaged woman looking to sub for security.

There are a lot of reasons to sub, a lot of psychology that goes into it. I get that this could be part of it, but when this seems to be the overriding reason? Yeah. Lacroix is, like, a grillion percent right to keep sending her away. She needs therapy, not a Dom. Or therapy and a Dom, but simply hooking up with a commandeering man isn’t going to fix any of her problems, yo.

I'm concerned about Tammy, you guys.

I’m concerned about Tammy, you guys.

Nat goes to Nick’s place to tell him about more “animal attacks”, and that she took care of them, but the press has gotten hold of all these headless corpses, and they’re all het up about Satanists or cultists or something. Nick thinks about turning on the television to see what they’re saying, but decides against it:

It was Captain Reese’s job to handle the newspaper and TV reporters. It was his job to stop the deaths.

Fine, good, whatever, but Sizemore’s misuse of pronouns here makes it look like it’s Reese’s job to handle the press and to stop the deaths, and Nick has no jobs at all. Again, this is easily an editing error, but I had to go back and re-read to make sure I knew what was going on. And it was doubly annoying to get a misused apostrophe in the next paragraph, where Nick and Nat are talking about how they hope the public won’t panic:

If people panicked, he thought, remembering a stake being driven through the Serbian creatures’ heart….

One stake is going through the shared heart of several Serbian creatures? Yeah, no. Either it’s one stake in the creatures’ heartS, or it’s one stake in one creature’s heart. I honestly have no idea what’s being said here. I assume Nick is just thinking of the one zombie he saw get staked, but I wouldn’t have to assume if the editor had done her job, you know?

grammar 3

Anyway, Nat asks Nick where the things came from, and in another flashback, we learn that Radu makes them just by biting, that he knows he does it, and that’s why he usually tears apart his victims so savagely.

Lacroix is also angling to get Nick to take care of Radu, but mostly, this is about the zombies.

Nick tells Nat all this, and that whoever’s creating the zombie-vamps in Toronto probably knows about it, and isn’t doing anything to stop it. So they’d better get to work.

Heigh Ho

Next week: Chapter 9! Hopefully more Tammy, because so far, she’s the most interesting thing going on! And maybe Vachon! Being Tracy’s Evil!Wikipedia!

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