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Discussion Starter #1
I'm posting the discussion early since I have a full day tomorrow.  We'll be reading Chapters 22-29 this week.  Here are the discussion questions for Chapters 15-21.

Chapter 15 - In Which Music Plays A Part

1. Mother Hildegarde helps Jamie and Claire break the musical code and discover that a large sum of money will be available to Charles.  Who do you think “S” is?

Chapter 16 - The Nature of Sulfur

1. I appears that Louis is not interested in Charles and his cause.  Why do you think that is?  What do you think of the general attitude toward Charles?

2. Why do you think Claire was poisoned at Versailles?

3. How did you feel about Master Raymond's involvement in the poisoning?

Chapter 17 - Posession

1. What did you think of Jamie's explanation when he comes home looking like he's been in a fight and in possession of an odd ring?

2. Why do you think Claire did not tell Jamie right away when she first felt the baby move?

Part Three -- Dragonfly in Amber
"Malchance"
Chapters 18-21

Chapter 18 - Rape in Paris

1. What are your impressions of the rape scene?

2. How did you think that the rapists recognized Claire as La Dame Blanche?

3. Do you think it was the right thing to go on with the dinner party after the earlier events took place?

4. Your impressions of the interactions of the guests at the dinner party?

5. Were you surprised that Mary Hawkins freaked out and interrupted the dinner party?

Chapter 19 - An Oath Is Sworn

1. How has Fergus grown into his role in Jamie and Claire's family?

2. How did you feel about learning Fergus' birthplace?

3. Why did you think Claire was unable to react to Murtagh's swearing vengeance for the attack that he was unable to prevent?

Chapter 20 - La Dame Blanche

1. How did you feel about Jamie starting the story about La Dame Blanche?

2. What did you think of Master Raymond's explanation of La Dame Blanche?

Chapter 21 - Untimely Resurrection

1. What was your reaction to the reappearance of Black Jack Randall?

2. Who do you think was more surprised to see each other - Black Jack or Jamie?

3. Were you surprised to see Dougal pop up as well?

4. What was your reaction to Jamie's hair laying around their quarters (after the haircut)?

5. Was Claire doing the right thing in trying to prevent the duel? Was she asking too much of Jamie to wait a year before exacting his revenge?
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Chapter 15 - In Which Music Plays A Part

1. Mother Hildegarde helps Jamie and Claire break the musical code and discover that a large sum of money will be available to Charles. Who do you think "S" is?


Sandringham. Frank and Rev. Wakefield weren't sure if Sandringham was a Jacobite, or if he was pretending to be to smoke out the real Jacobites. In either event, he's bound to be involved.

Chapter 16 - The Nature of Sulfur

1. I appears that Louis is not interested in Charles and his cause. Why do you think that is? What do you think of the general attitude toward Charles?


The previous attempt to restore the Stuarts failed. I don't think Louis wants to throw good many after bad. He wouldn't mind if Charles distracted the English, but he's not going to give Charles any meaningful support.

The French are concerned with their own country and their own government. James III might have had some claim to the throne, but Charles is merely the grandson of the last legitimate Stuart king, James II. The French just can't be bothered.

2. Why do you think Claire was poisoned at Versailles?

It was probably St. Germain. He's not the kind to forget and he is the kind to take his revenge.

3. How did you feel about Master Raymond's involvement in the poisoning?

Raymond didn't know that the poison was intended for Claire. He did substitute bitter cascara. I don't think he really wants to poison anyone.

Chapter 17 - Posession

1. What did you think of Jamie's explanation when he comes home looking like he's been in a fight and in possession of an odd ring?


Not looking good for Jamie. Just why would he be given that ring? It's only got one purpose, and why would he have it if they thought he wasn't going to use it?

2. Why do you think Claire did not tell Jamie right away when she first felt the baby move?

There's something about the wonder of that first movement that is just between the mother and baby.

Part Three -- Dragonfly in Amber
"Malchance"
Chapters 18-21

Chapter 18 - Rape in Paris

1. What are your impressions of the rape scene?


Pretty brutal. Poor little Mary. Marigny will never marry her now. Maybe that's a good thing.

2. How did you think that the rapists recognized Claire as La Dame Blanche?

Claire has a reputation in Paris society and in the Hospital, plus her association with Raymond. She is obviously well-known around Paris. She is a member of the nobility and a healer. In those days, women healers were frequently thought to be witches, but Claire doesn't fit neatly into that category because of her position in society. That's why she's the "white" lady and not associated with "black" magic.

3. Do you think it was the right thing to go on with the dinner party after the earlier events took place?

I think the reason was to protect Mary. If they canceled at the last minute, they would have to have a very good reason. Also, it was the first time St. Germain was invited, and Jamie wanted to see his reaction to the white stone protecting Claire. Sandringham was a guest, too, and Jamie couldn't pass up the chance to find out his connection with Charles Stuart.

4. Your impressions of the interactions of the guests at the dinner party?

Not too many undercurrents. As a matter of fact, they were getting along pretty well until ...

5. Were you surprised that Mary Hawkins freaked out and interrupted the dinner party?

Yes, very. I really thought Alex could control her, and she had a stiff dose of opium. It should have kept her under for quite a while. I should have known, though, since her uncle showed up unexpectedly that something like that would happen.

Chapter 19 - An Oath Is Sworn

1. How has Fergus grown into his role in Jamie and Claire's family?


Fergus has made himself indispensable to Jamie and Claire, and I think they look on him as much more than an employee.

2. How did you feel about learning Fergus' birthplace?

Considering his occupation, not at all surprised. I felt bad that none of the women admitted to being his mother. My feeling is that it was Madame Elise. She let him sleep there and the women turned him into something of a pet.

3. Why did you think Claire was unable to react to Murtagh's swearing vengeance for the attack that he was unable to prevent?

I think she was still in shock, not only over the attack itself, but Murtagh's plea for Jamie to kill him. Quite a bit worse than strapping Fergus for allowing Claire to come home in the company of Monsieur Forez.

Chapter 20 - La Dame Blanche

1. How did you feel about Jamie starting the story about La Dame Blanche?


Claire is always going to be out of place in the 18th century. Better that Paris thinks she is a white lady and forestall any more nefarious rumors about her. Plus, of course, it got Jamie out of having to use "the ring."

2. What did you think of Master Raymond's explanation of La Dame Blanche?

Raymond knows what goes on in Paris. I think he feels it's safer for Claire also.

Chapter 21 - Untimely Resurrection

1. What was your reaction to the reappearance of Black Jack Randall?


The first time I read it, I nearly dropped the book. Even now, it gets me.

2. Who do you think was more surprised to see each other - Black Jack or Jamie?

Black Jack. It was a double shock to him. First Claire, then Jamie.

3. Were you surprised to see Dougal pop up as well?

Another bad penny. We just never know where or when he's going to show up, or what he's up to when he does.

4. What was your reaction to Jamie's hair laying around their quarters (after the haircut)?

Not only did he cut his hair so it wouldn't get in his face during the duel with Randall, he was so distraught that he grabbed hanks of hair, cut them off and threw them down. Obviously, Jamie was in a rage.

5. Was Claire doing the right thing in trying to prevent the duel? Was she asking too much of Jamie to wait a year before exacting his revenge?

Claire's motivation was to save Frank. Why wasn't she thinking of Jamie? If Jamie fought the duel, he could be killed. If he wasn't killed, he would be arrested and hanged for killing Randall.

She was right to try to stop the duel. Nothing good could come of it, for her, Frank or Jamie.

By waiting a year, Claire ensures that Frank's ancestor will be conceived. In a year, she might be able to stop Jamie entirely. In a little over a year, they would have either stopped Charles Stuart, or everything they hold dear will be lost.
 

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1. Mother Hildegarde helps Jamie and Claire break the musical code and discover that a large sum of money will be available to Charles. Who do you think "S" is?
Had to be Sandringham. Frank had run across him and there was always a question about which side he was actually on. They knew the person had to be English, so he would be the logical choice.

Chapter 16 - The Nature of Sulfur

1. I appears that Louis is not interested in Charles and his cause. Why do you think that is? What do you think of the general attitude toward Charles?
France was having its own problems with England, so I am sure Louis was not anxious to antagonize them for a doomed attempt.

2. Why do you think Claire was poisoned at Versailles?
St. Germain had a big grudge against Claire for costing him the Patagonia and its cargo. He was known as a man who would not forget. It would be easy to hide his involvement when it was such a large place and so much going on.

3. How did you feel about Master Raymond's involvement in the poisoning?
Master Raymond routinely sold catarra instead of poison. I don't think he wanted anyone to die. If he had known one of the purchasers meant it for Claire, I think he would have tried to warn her.

Chapter 17 - Posession

1. What did you think of Jamie's explanation when he comes home looking like he's been in a fight and in possession of an odd ring?
Sounded far-fetched, but he had remained a virgin until he married Claire. I am still not sure what the ring was for, and am not sure I want to know. I mean, I understand where it went, but not why. Anyway, Jamie's sense of honor made him stay to keep an eye on Charles, but it also kept him from using the services.
2. Why do you think Claire did not tell Jamie right away when she first felt the baby move?
That is a very special moment for a mother, when you realize that it is a real person inside. How do you describe it?

Part Three -- Dragonfly in Amber
"Malchance"
Chapters 18-21

Chapter 18 - Rape in Paris

1. What are your impressions of the rape scene?
I was scared for Claire and Mary. It was very intense.

2. How did you think that the rapists recognized Claire as La Dame Blanche?
It was obviously someone who at least knew she was Jamie's wife and had heard the story Jamie had told at the tavern.

3. Do you think it was the right thing to go on with the dinner party after the earlier events took place?
It was the best way to keep too many questions from being asked. It was also the opportunity they had been wanting to see if St. Germain had been the one to poison Claire. They also wanted to see if they could find out if he was involved in the attack.

4. Your impressions of the interactions of the guests at the dinner party?
Normal political gathering.

5. Were you surprised that Mary Hawkins freaked out and interrupted the dinner party?
It had to happen that way. You knew since her uncle was there, that he had to find out. Apparently, she had a bad reaction to the opium.

Chapter 19 - An Oath Is Sworn

1. How has Fergus grown into his role in Jamie and Claire's family?
He takes his responsibilities very seriously, since he recognizes the fact that Jamie rescued him. He is becoming more a member of the family than a servant.

2. How did you feel about learning Fergus' birthplace?
I was not surprised. It was the most reasonable explanation for his presence there to begin with.

3. Why did you think Claire was unable to react to Murtagh's swearing vengeance for the attack that he was unable to prevent?
She was very surprised, but knew that Murtagh was trying his best to make up for the attack that he felt was his fault.

Chapter 20 - La Dame Blanche

1. How did you feel about Jamie starting the story about La Dame Blanche?
Jamie is very quick on his feet. This gave him a perfect opportunity to get out of a bad situation with his honor intact, and still come out with the respect of the other men. It also gave a good reason for her to be working at the hospital, since she was a healer. It was a good cover for them both.

2. What did you think of Master Raymond's explanation of La Dame Blanche?
Raymond definitely knows more than he is telling. He helped spread the story, I think in an effort to help protect Claire. He also knew there was more to her than he let on.

Chapter 21 - Untimely Resurrection

1. What was your reaction to the reappearance of Black Jack Randall?
I about fell out of my chair. He was supposed to be dead!

2. Who do you think was more surprised to see each other - Black Jack or Jamie?
I am sure Jamie suspected Black Jack was not really dead, or at least feared it. Randall also knew that Jamie had not been hanged, but where did he think Jamie would be? Even though he knew he was alive, he probably never expected to see him going around in public.

3. Were you surprised to see Dougal pop up as well?
He seems to keep popping up whenever Jamie is in trouble. He was at Ft. William, near Wentworth, and now in Paris when Jamie is out looking for Randall to kill him. Wonder why?

4. What was your reaction to Jamie's hair laying around their quarters (after the haircut)?
He was going to kill Randall, and was not going to repeat his last duel mistake.

5. Was Claire doing the right thing in trying to prevent the duel? Was she asking too much of Jamie to wait a year before exacting his revenge?
She was doing what she thought she had to do. She had no doubt that Jamie would kill Randall. She could not appeal to his sense of self-preservation, but has to make him think of someone else. I think she was hoping that by making Jamie wait, something else would happen and Jamie would not have to live with killing Frank, even indirectly. She also knew that when Jamie killed Randall in a duel, she would lose Jamie, because he would be killed for fighting an illegal duel or he would have to run. As pregnant as she is and with the problems she has had, she could not go with him, so she would lose him either way. She couldn't deal with that possibility.
 

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gertiekindle said:
Chapter 15 - In Which Music Plays A Part

1. Mother Hildegarde helps Jamie and Claire break the musical code and discover that a large sum of money will be available to Charles. Who do you think “S” is?


Sandringham. Frank and Rev. Wakefield weren’t sure if Sandringham was a Jacobite, or if he was pretending to be to smoke out the real Jacobites. In either event, he’s bound to be involved.

Chapter 16 - The Nature of Sulfur

1. I appears that Louis is not interested in Charles and his cause. Why do you think that is? What do you think of the general attitude toward Charles?


The previous attempt to restore the Stuarts failed. I don’t think Louis wants to throw good many after bad. He wouldn’t mind if Charles distracted the English, but he’s not going to give Charles any meaningful support.

The French are concerned with their own country and their own government. James III might have had some claim to the throne, but Charles is merely the grandson of the last legitimate Stuart king, James II. The French just can’t be bothered.

2. Why do you think Claire was poisoned at Versailles?

It was probably St. Germain. He’s not the kind to forget and he is the kind to take his revenge.

3. How did you feel about Master Raymond's involvement in the poisoning?

Raymond didn’t know that the poison was intended for Claire. He did substitute bitter cascara. I don’t think he really wants to poison anyone.

Chapter 17 - Posession

1. What did you think of Jamie's explanation when he comes home looking like he's been in a fight and in possession of an odd ring?


Not looking good for Jamie. Just why would he be given that ring? It’s only got one purpose, and why would he have it if they thought he wasn’t going to use it?

2. Why do you think Claire did not tell Jamie right away when she first felt the baby move?

There’s something about the wonder of that first movement that is just between the mother and baby.

Part Three -- Dragonfly in Amber
"Malchance"
Chapters 18-21

Chapter 18 - Rape in Paris

1. What are your impressions of the rape scene?


Pretty brutal. Poor little Mary. Marigny will never marry her now. Maybe that’s a good thing.

2. How did you think that the rapists recognized Claire as La Dame Blanche?

Claire has a reputation in Paris society and in the Hospital, plus her association with Raymond. She is obviously well-known around Paris. She is a member of the nobility and a healer. In those days, women healers were frequently thought to be witches, but Claire doesn’t fit neatly into that category because of her position in society. That’s why she’s the “white” lady and not associated with “black” magic.

3. Do you think it was the right thing to go on with the dinner party after the earlier events took place?

I think the reason was to protect Mary. If they canceled at the last minute, they would have to have a very good reason. Also, it was the first time St. Germain was invited, and Jamie wanted to see his reaction to the white stone protecting Claire. Sandringham was a guest, too, and Jamie couldn’t pass up the chance to find out his connection with Charles Stuart.

4. Your impressions of the interactions of the guests at the dinner party?

Not too many undercurrents. As a matter of fact, they were getting along pretty well until ...

5. Were you surprised that Mary Hawkins freaked out and interrupted the dinner party?

Yes, very. I really thought Alex could control her, and she had a stiff dose of opium. It should have kept her under for quite a while. I should have known, though, since her uncle showed up unexpectedly that something like that would happen.

Chapter 19 - An Oath Is Sworn

1. How has Fergus grown into his role in Jamie and Claire's family?


Fergus has made himself indispensable to Jamie and Claire, and I think they look on him as much more than an employee.

2. How did you feel about learning Fergus' birthplace?

Considering his occupation, not at all surprised. I felt bad that none of the women admitted to being his mother. My feeling is that it was Madame Elise. She let him sleep there and the women turned him into something of a pet.

3. Why did you think Claire was unable to react to Murtagh's swearing vengeance for the attack that he was unable to prevent?

I think she was still in shock, not only over the attack itself, but Murtagh’s plea for Jamie to kill him. Quite a bit worse than strapping Fergus for allowing Claire to come home in the company of Monsieur Forez.

Chapter 20 - La Dame Blanche

1. How did you feel about Jamie starting the story about La Dame Blanche?


Claire is always going to be out of place in the 18th century. Better that Paris thinks she is a white lady and forestall any more nefarious rumors about her. Plus, of course, it got Jamie out of having to use “the ring.”

2. What did you think of Master Raymond's explanation of La Dame Blanche?

Raymond knows what goes on in Paris. I think he feels it’s safer for Claire also.

Chapter 21 - Untimely Resurrection

1. What was your reaction to the reappearance of Black Jack Randall?


The first time I read it, I nearly dropped the book. Even now, it gets me.

2. Who do you think was more surprised to see each other - Black Jack or Jamie?

Black Jack. It was a double shock to him. First Claire, then Jamie.

3. Were you surprised to see Dougal pop up as well?

Another bad penny. We just never know where or when he’s going to show up, or what he’s up to when he does.

4. What was your reaction to Jamie's hair laying around their quarters (after the haircut)?

Not only did he cut his hair so it wouldn’t get in his face during the duel with Randall, he was so distraught that he grabbed hanks of hair, cut them off and threw them down. Obviously, Jamie was in a rage.

5. Was Claire doing the right thing in trying to prevent the duel? Was she asking too much of Jamie to wait a year before exacting his revenge?

Claire’s motivation was to save Frank. Why wasn’t she thinking of Jamie? If Jamie fought the duel, he could be killed. If he wasn’t killed, he would be arrested and hanged for killing Randall.

She was right to try to stop the duel. Nothing good could come of it, for her, Frank or Jamie.

By waiting a year, Claire ensures that Frank’s ancestor will be conceived. In a year, she might be able to stop Jamie entirely. In a little over a year, they would have either stopped Charles Stuart, or everything they hold dear will be lost.
Ditto

;D

Okay, I know that's cheating, but I really had mostly the same answers, just not as well worded!

I did get a bit angry at Claire, not for stopping the duel but for doing it because she was worried about Frank rather than because she was worried about Jamie. How is Jamie supposed to feel about that? "No, hun, you can't go fight the demon-from-he** because then my OTHER husband won't be born!"
 

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Just gonna post for the chapters I have read - been trying to get caught up on Distant Cousin - feel like a school girl with all my "required" reading for this week, as if I don't have another life ;)

Chapter 15 - In Which Music Plays A Part

1. Mother Hildegarde helps Jamie and Claire break the musical code and discover that a large sum of money will be available to Charles. Who do you think "S" is?

Chapter 16 - The Nature of Sulfur

1. I appears that Louis is not interested in Charles and his cause. Why do you think that is? What do you think of the general attitude toward Charles?
Louis knows Charles is a twit

2. Why do you think Claire was poisoned at Versailles?
someone was trying to tell someone something - as in keep your cotton pickin' hands out of our business

3. How did you feel about Master Raymond's involvement in the poisoning?
He was involved but not directly involved, he may not have been aware exactly who was the intended victim
 

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Discussion Starter #6
tlshaw said:
1. What did you think of Jamie's explanation when he comes home looking like he's been in a fight and in possession of an odd ring?
Sounded far-fetched, but he had remained a virgin until he married Claire. I am still not sure what the ring was for, and am not sure I want to know. I mean, I understand where it went, but not why. Anyway, Jamie's sense of honor made him stay to keep an eye on Charles, but it also kept him from using the services.
Are you sure you don't want to know? ;)

Chapter 20 - La Dame Blanche

1. How did you feel about Jamie starting the story about La Dame Blanche?
Jamie is very quick on his feet. This gave him a perfect opportunity to get out of a bad situation with his honor intact, and still come out with the respect of the other men. It also gave a good reason for her to be working at the hospital, since she was a healer. It was a good cover for them both.
Very true. Jamie does react very quickly to take advantage of most situations.

5. Was Claire doing the right thing in trying to prevent the duel? Was she asking too much of Jamie to wait a year before exacting his revenge?
She was doing what she thought she had to do. She had no doubt that Jamie would kill Randall. She could not appeal to his sense of self-preservation, but has to make him think of someone else. I think she was hoping that by making Jamie wait, something else would happen and Jamie would not have to live with killing Frank, even indirectly. She also knew that when Jamie killed Randall in a duel, she would lose Jamie, because he would be killed for fighting an illegal duel or he would have to run. As pregnant as she is and with the problems she has had, she could not go with him, so she would lose him either way. She couldn't deal with that possibility.
Yes, I like that. Claire directed Jamie's thoughts outward knowing he always put other people and his responsibilities first. I'm glad you said that. Now I'm not so upset with Claire for not thinking of Jamie first.

SongbirdVB said:
I did get a bit angry at Claire, not for stopping the duel but for doing it because she was worried about Frank rather than because she was worried about Jamie. How is Jamie supposed to feel about that? "No, hun, you can't go fight the demon-from-he** because then my OTHER husband won't be born!"
See tlshaw's answer. I think she hit the nail on the head.

Anju said:
2. Why do you think Claire was poisoned at Versailles?
someone was trying to tell someone something - as in keep your cotton pickin' hands out of our business
Okay, maybe not St. Germain. Maybe Claire and Jamie are getting close to stopping Charles, or on the other side, those that want to stop Charles, think Jamie and Claire are helping him.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
tlshaw said:
Actually, I am quite curious. ;)
The ring fits fairly tightly and is supposed to prolong the experience. Sometimes they are hollow with little holes on one side. They're filled with red pepper or other stimulants, and the powder is released every time "contact" is made.

Is that enough family-friendly euphemisms? :D
 

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Well, that was interesting. Sometimes I feel like I have led a very sheltered life. And that may not be a bad thing. I was going to Google it and see what I could find, but I think you answered my question quite adequately.
 

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***About that ring explaination, Gertie...red pepper.....Wouldn't that burn, meaning ouch, not burn, as in lust? LOL! Well, I guess I learnt something today.
***I never got that "white witch" as opposed to "black magic" analogy until you, Gertie, pointed that out. I thought that it may have to do with her skin tone. LOL!
***I'd want to adopt Fergus. He's the little man. So cute!!
***Okay, got more by reading about why wait to kill Black Jack, tshaw, by reading your post.
***Yes, Dougal pops up as someone said whenever Jamie's in trouble. Can't trust him, though.
***Black Jack, OMG, what a fright! I'd want to claw his eyes out. When he was gripping Claire's arm, I wish she had a long pipe in her hand or something else that was hard to wack his hand off of her. How about Jamie's sausage? LOL! Then to bash his head in....uh, got carried away.
***Master Raymond is creepy, but he'd want to protect Claire. I don't think alot of people "get him" the way Claire does. She accepts him as he is, & he likewise in mutual respect.
***Poor Mary. I do hope that she & Alex somehow, but don't know how, get together.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Toby said:
***About that ring explaination, Gertie...red pepper.....Wouldn't that burn, meaning ouch, not burn, as in lust? LOL! Well, I guess I learnt something today.
Some people feel that "no pain, no gain." :eek:

***I'd want to adopt Fergus. He's the little man. So cute!!
He is a cutie pie. Stay tuned for more on Fergus.

***Black Jack, OMG, what a fright! I'd want to claw his eyes out. When he was gripping Claire's arm, I wish she had a long pipe in her hand or something else that was hard to wack his hand off of her. How about Jamie's sausage? LOL! Then to bash his head in....uh, got carried away.
But they ate the sausage. ;D
 

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gertiekindle said:
They're filled with red pepper or other stimulants, and the powder is released every time "contact" is made.
Wow - I never heard that part before. I was curious about why the ring had the engraving on it. They must take their "special" rings very seriously.

I found myself frustrated that Jamie never explained the bite marks on his upper thigh or the hickeys on his neck. I get that things must have gotten hot and heavy and that he ultiimately resisted - but, as his wife, I'd still be extremely p.o.'d and would want to know EXACTLY what happened.

I am enjoying Fergus' role in these chapters. He's young but he is certainly loyal and clever. I hope we see him grow up in future books.
 

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1. Mother Hildegarde helps Jamie and Claire break the musical code and discover that a large sum of money will be available to Charles. Who do you think “S” is?

Sandringham is the only bad guy whose name starts with 'S'…

1. I appears that Louis is not interested in Charles and his cause. Why do you think that is? What do you think of the general attitude toward Charles?

I honestly didn't pay a lot of attention to the politics, but my impression of Louis as a very vain man would make it easy to believe he wouldn't risk his own comfort to support a campaign that seemed very high risk, especially as there was virtually no real political pressure on him to help Charles.

2. Why do you think Claire was poisoned at Versailles?

It may have been St. Germain getting back at Claire, but it could have been someone trying to get back at Jamie - someone may have found out that he is undermining Charles, or the opposite side could be afraid of his support for Charles. If attacking Jamie was too risky or obvious, attacking Claire may have been easier and accomplish the same result (scare Jamie away).

3. How did you feel about Master Raymond's involvement in the poisoning?

It sounds like Raymond is treading thin ice - if he routinely substitutes cascara for poison, he is in danger of being found out by his clients, and they may not be the type of clients you would wish to anger. It sounds like he has to pick and choose between the people whom he can fool, and those he dare not. It is hard to believe that he had known ahead of time that a potion was meant for Claire, so maybe he just got lucky. But since he did not seem surprised at her story, I have to say that somehow he knew or suspected.

1. What did you think of Jamie's explanation when he comes home looking like he's been in a fight and in possession of an odd ring?

Is it that unusual for an 18th century husband to want to stay faithful to his wife, and not bring her home some nasty diseases?? Geeze, it's a wonder all of Paris didn't die of STD's by the age of 30…

2. Why do you think Claire did not tell Jamie right away when she first felt the baby move?

Most people (who have never been pregnant) are skeptical when you tell them that - so it's hard to share it with someone who does not know what it feels like. It also would have been hard to tell him of it, knowing that it was too early for him to feel it too.

1. What are your impressions of the rape scene?

We knew there had to be some reason for Mary not to go through with the arranged marriage, it's just unfortunate that she had to suffer so much for it.

2. How did you think that the rapists recognized Claire as La Dame Blanche?

Claire seems to be noticed wherever she goes, both for good and bad, as having powers and intelligence that women of that era should not have. Someone is capitalizing on that reputation; in this case, it seems to have been to her benefit, but I think she was just very lucky it wasn't the other way around. Do one wrong thing, and a reputation as a healer can be turned into an accusation of a witch.

3. Do you think it was the right thing to go on with the dinner party after the earlier events took place?

There was no time for a 'plan b'; if they had any hope of hiding what had been done, and any hope of salvaging their well-laid plans, they had to go through with it.

5. Were you surprised that Mary Hawkins freaked out and interrupted the dinner party?

As if it wasn't bad enough for her… it had to get worse? But for her marriage plans to be cancelled, her uncle would have had to find out somehow.

1. How has Fergus grown into his role in Jamie and Claire's family?

Almost like an adopted son.

2. How did you feel about learning Fergus' birthplace?

Not surprised, since that's where Jamie found him. All the more reason to bring him into their family, since there is no hope of him finding one of his own.

3. Why did you think Claire was unable to react to Murtagh's swearing vengeance for the attack that he was unable to prevent?

It must have been pretty surreal for her - first the attack, then hearing someone demand to be killed because of it - and it shows her how deep these men hold their honor and vows to each other, which was also kinda scary.

1. How did you feel about Jamie starting the story about La Dame Blanche?

I wondered how much he was 'making up' and how much he actually believed it himself - not that she would make his parts shrivel and fall off, but that since she was a time-traveler, he's got to be thinking that she must have something supernatural about her. Maybe he's always thought of her that way - but had no reason to say it to anyone.

1. What was your reaction to the reappearance of Black Jack Randall?

Ah Hah! The Arch-Nemesis is Back!

2. Who do you think was more surprised to see each other - Black Jack or Jamie?

Definitely Black Jack. Jamie has sort of been through this once before, when he nearly went berserk and killed an innocent man (Alex). That scared him a lot, and probably made him pause just long enough not to over-react and give Black Jack the satisfaction of getting a reaction out of him.

3. Were you surprised to see Dougal pop up as well?

So, what lies is he going to tell today??

4. What was your reaction to Jamie's hair laying around their quarters (after the haircut)?

Knew that he was planning on a duel.

5. Was Claire doing the right thing in trying to prevent the duel? Was she asking too much of Jamie to wait a year before exacting his revenge?

Claire had just found out that Randall was still alive, which gave her the hope she was yearning for that Frank would still exist. She couldn't bear to have that hope ripped away again. I think that was her first reaction; I don't think at that point that she doubted that Jamie would win (and get away with it), especially after having heard of the story of his first duel as if it were a romp in the park.

Yes, she did have some concern for Jamie's safety, but she knew it was inevitable that Jamie would want to kill BlackJack, and when that time came she would willingly help him accomplish it. Her whole reason for the delay was to protect Frank.
 

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***Thanks tlshaw!  I'm glad that I finally asked. I kepted forgetting to ask this question for awhile. Mo duinne wasn't in the Kindle dictionary or google online. ;D
***Gertie, yes, you are right that they did eat the sausage. I should have thought of another object of destruction, as I am now thinking the word, sausage & Black Jack in the same sentence makes me shudder, if ya know what I mean. How about a dirk stabbing his hand. Yeah, that's better. Whewww!  ;)
*** Yes, I just read a bit more on fearless Fergus last night.  :eek: hehehe!!! I do love his character.
***About the ring, Gertie, I never thought about it that way. Vera interesting.
 

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ConnieK, that bothered me as well. Just the fact that he allowed some woman to get that close for him to get bite marks & hickeys.....well....I'd want to know details of exactly what happened as well. In the long run, after the clearing up of the matter, maybe I'd not want to have those details remaining in my memory, as it would all be a reminder of what happened. I do believe what Jamie told Claire, that it was the woman, the prostitute, that threw herself on him & I think that Jamie being drunk, didn't react as quickly to throwing her off of him, besides al the other stuff going on in his brain.
 

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bosslady said:
I wondered how much he was ‘making up’ and how much he actually believed it himself – not that she would make his parts shrivel and fall off, but that since she was a time-traveler, he’s got to be thinking that she must have something supernatural about her. Maybe he’s always thought of her that way – but had no reason to say it to anyone.
I think you are onto something here. Jamie had seen how the stones at Craig na Dun affected Claire when he took her there after the witch trial. She had told him about the time travel and she had done things and knew things that there was no real explanation for in his world. He even told her it would be easier if she was a witch. Also, even though he was well-educated, he was still a Scot and there was a lot of superstition during that time.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Toby said:
***Gertie, yes, you are right that they did eat the sausage. I should have thought of another object of destruction, as I am now thinking the word, sausage & Black Jack in the same sentence makes me shudder, if ya know what I mean. How about a dirk stabbing his hand. Yeah, that's better. Whewww! ;)
Now you have that image in my brain, too. Eeeuuuwww. You're right, a dirk in the hand, preferably a red-hot dirk pinning Randall to a bed of coals is a much better image.

*** Yes, I just read a bit more on fearless Fergus last night. :eek: hehehe!!! I do love his character.
Trouble seems to be his middle name.

Toby said:
ConnieK, that bothered me as well. Just the fact that he allowed some woman to get that close for him to get bite marks & hickeys.....well....I'd want to know details of exactly what happened as well. In the long run, after the clearing up of the matter, maybe I'd not want to have those details remaining in my memory, as it would all be a reminder of what happened. I do believe what Jamie told Claire, that it was the woman, the prostitute, that threw herself on him & I think that Jamie being drunk, didn't react as quickly to throwing her off of him, besides al the other stuff going on in his brain.
Remembering Jamie's definition of drunk, and just how much it took him to get drunk, I'm not sure that's exactly an excuse. Maybe his brain was working a little slowly, because he is pretty quick-witted. Or maybe he was just enjoying himself a bit while he thought up a plausible excuse, which turned out to be La Dame Blanche. Jamie's no saint. It's just lucky he thought up that little story before reaching the point of no return.

tlshaw said:
I think you are onto something here. Jamie had seen how the stones at Craig na Dun affected Claire when he took her there after the witch trial. She had told him about the time travel and she had done things and knew things that there was no real explanation for in his world. He even told her it would be easier if she was a witch. Also, even though he was well-educated, he was still a Scot and there was a lot of superstition during that time.
I think you and bosslady have it right. Thinking ahead
to when Jamie was bit by the snake and he asked Roger to get Claire back to her time if anything happened to him.
 

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***Sorry Gertie for that image.  :p
***Gertie, you have made a really good point about Jamie's drunkingness, etc. I guess I was just making an excuse for him. At any rate, Claire let him have it, so I feel better that he didn't get off that easy.
***As always, I have been really enjoying reading what everyone has to say.
 
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