The Trial of Pawa Wanga

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Herald of Fury's second trial introduces us to a set of characters that we won't meet again for the entire novel: Deejo, Paaja and Wadhi. It also places us in a Rodian dive bar, that we won't revisit for the rest of the story. So why introduce these characters? Why this commentary, through Deejo's viewpoint, in this setting?

We chose Deejo, Paaja, and Wadhi, because we wanted to show how every day Rodians are grappling with these trials. It's one thing to know that Krul is simulcasting the trials. It's another thing entirely to understand what that means for real Rodians. So throughout the chapter, their dialogue gives us a perspective on the trial we wouldn't get if we were in Pawa Wanga's head, for example.

The dive bar at Ashgo's tells us more about Deejo, Paaja and Wadhi than we'd get if we had long explanations of their characters. These are men that like bars with "cheap ale, receptive dancers, smoking allowed." They harass each other and throw out casual obscenities. This is their place, a place where they're allowed to say what they think.

Where will they go from here? What will these three men do? We leave this unresolved, and only hint at the future. As the trial proceeds forward, we sense Deejo identify with Pawa Wanga. Pawa's scams, coarse personality, and brute will are features of Deejo as well, in a less grisly occupation. Pawa's execution is a call to action for Deejo, and one he rejects reflexively. Only Wadhi, Deejo's more thoughtful friend, translates Pawa's trial and execution into personal action. Paaja is content to watch on with perverse fascination.

What would you do?

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