Phil’s original draft for this scene was not too different when it came to the sky elves, but featured all five of the original Peacemakers. I felt like that wasn’t quite working for us, leading to the following exchange:

Edits galore to the opening sequence. The big problem I had with the last draft was that there was no overt reason for Bandit and Frigg to step up when Byron, Gravedust and Syr’Nj were standing right there. I decided to cut Gravedust, who had nothing to contribute in the space allotted, and Byron, who wasn’t doing anything Syr’Nj couldn’t do better. Where they are and what they’re up to while the girls are playing ambassador is a question to be answered more firmly later, possibly in another random encounter, but I see them embarking on an adventure that only they’re qualified for– caving, perhaps, or infiltrating a men-only society. 

Then I thought about having Syr’Nj’s timid, let’s-all-get-along approach falter, so that Frigg and Keynes could get their moment, but we’ve seen her diplomacy fail a lot in the last few chapters. I felt it was time for her to win one, especially in a flash-forward, so the reader has some idea what developments to look forward to from her. So in the current version, Syr’Nj is consciously using Frigg and Keynes’ individual blunt personalities as “bad cop” to her “good cop.” I also like the point of contrast between this and the friction between Frigg and Syr’Nj on the airship. Those two still don’t like each other in Asallah En-Qu’Lara, but they’ve learned to accommodate one another a bit. -T Campbell 2/17/10 9:43 AM 

What a STELLAR improvement! Way to go, bropiece. I modded Frigg’s dialogue up a little bit so we don’t overuse the F-word. Also I like Frigg using the word “palpable.” -Phil Kahn 2/17/10 8:08 PM