Welcome to Asallah En-Qu’Lara, AKA “my spelling nightmare for eight years and counting.” I’m not scared of complex names in general: I was the one who came up with “Naror’Nj” and “Faereksch’Nj.” But at least I could remember the dumb puns that inspired those names when we had to reproduce them. This was Phil’s coinage, and whenever we came back to it after an interval of months or years, I was like, “wait, is it Lara En-Qu’Allah? Just Lara Qu’Alla? Quranic Qdoba? Dammit, let me look up the original page again.”

I do like that there’s a vaguely transcribed-Arabic feel to it, with the inclusion of “Allah” and that rogue Q, which fits with this quasi-medieval era and the Sky Elves’ role as keepers of lost magickal knowledge. But boy, I wish we’d settled on a nickname for it.

We’ll get into this scene more in a bit, but two things I really like: the fact that wood elves waver a bit in their “DOWN WITH URBAN LIVING, UP WITH NATURENATURE” shtick when it comes to the accomplishments of their fellow elf societies, and the fact that Phil gave Frigg the word “palpable” in her punchline. It doesn’t seem that Friggish, but you gotta keep your characters from hitting their most familiar notes every second or they’ll start to get Flanderized.