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Thursday, January 4, 2018

Knightfall 1.5: Shrewd De Nogaret

Actually, in Knightfall 1.5 last night, the King's adviser De Nogaret proved to be more than shrewd.  He's shaping up as a stone-cold genius in pulling the strings to get the King and France to do things his way.

As we previously saw, he was no fan of the Princess marrying the Catalonian Prince.  De Nogaret at very least sees his best future (and, at this point, I guess we can say that's also what he sees as best for France) as the Princess marrying English royalty.  So, what does he do about the French and Catalonian marriage, literally on the verge of happening?  He fakes his own near-death, and sets up the Catalonian to be killed by a female Mongolian ninja wielding Greek fire.

That's cool in all kinds of ways.  First, ninjas were Japanese men.  So a woman from Mongolia taking this assassin's role is a somewhat fantastical development - but also consistent with the mythological motif that runs through the Templars already.   And, although Greek fire was legendary, it was as real as death, and its development by the Eastern Roman Empire aka the Byzantines helped them keep off attackers of all sorts for a thousand years after the Western Roman Empire fell.

I'm also really liking the fine tuning of relationships among Landry, Gawain, and Tancrede.  Each Templar is different yet utterly devoted to the cause and convinced of the superiority of his own instincts and analyses.   This tripartite leadership makes for some riveting scenes, as when Landry and Gawain, after making Tancrede literally run the gauntlet, turn to him for help in identifying the assassin (unfortunately not in time to stop her).

Lots of good story ahead in this excellent series.

See also: Knightfall 1.1: Possibilities ... Knightfall 1.2: Grail and Tinder ... Knightfall 1.3: Baby ... Knightfall 1.4: Parentage

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