Emily and the White Council

25 Nov

Emily and the White Council

A couple of people asked, after reading The Right Side of History, why the White Council (or at least elements of it) was so quick to throw Emily under the bus and do their hardest to get her tried, convicted and depowered/executed before anyone could do anything to stop them.  They thought the issue came out of nowhere <grin>.  It didn’t and here’s why.

In the real world – a dreadful place, I don’t recommend a visit – one of the principle issues with immigration is that immigrants have been raised in different places and don’t always think the same way as the locals.  (Americans think nothing of driving for hours to eat; Britons are often reluctant to drive more than an hour or so from their homes unless it’s for something major).  Immigrants have different ideas about a lot of things, from education to religion and clothing and, even if we don’t want to admit it, it can be quite difficult to judge which way someone will jump if you don’t share the same cultural background.  This renders them dangerously unpredictable, which fuels fear of the unknown.

Fair or not, this is human nature.  The stranger is always suspect.

Emily is a child of our world.  The White Councillors are not.  To us, she’s a comprehensible character with understandable motives.  To them, she’s a dangerously unpredictable element who could go left or right or straight ahead or even withdraw, based on a calculus they don’t share and certainly don’t understand.  They certainly don’t know she’s an immigrant, so they’re not making any allowances for her limited understanding of the world around her. 

And so, from their point of view, Emily is just bizarre.

She defeats a necromancer … how?  Why can’t she do it again?  When she does, why doesn’t she kill all of them?  Why isn’t she promoting herself, or responding to reasonable requests for alliances, or doing anything they would do if they were her?  Why is she picking such odd and mixed friends?  Why is she …?

King Randor gives her vast lands, wealth and power.  She gives them away!  She is a brilliant genius who invents lots of revolutionary innovations, yet she gives them away too? She captures a school and reignites a nexus point and declares she’s going to turn it into a university … what is that?  What will she do next?

They’d be a lot happier – they’d certainly understand – if Emily asserted herself, made use of the power base she created and became a great ruler.  But she is just weird.  She should be ruling her lands, not giving them away.  She should be …

From their point of view, Emily is a loose cannon.

And what are they going to do about it?

Bribe her?  She’s already wealthy beyond the dreams of Quark.  Smear her?  Most of the known world thinks she’s a heroine.  Kill her?  She’s powerful in her own right – she beat necromancers – and she has, as far as they know, a father who might be even more powerful and certainly much more ruthless.  And if they do … who’s going to beat the necromancers?  The Allied Lands were losing, before Emily arrived.  Perhaps she is a Child of Destiny after all.

Emily’s enemies were caught in a bind.  If they moved against her, they risked disaster.  If they did nothing, they risked disaster too.  Who knew what she would do next?  They didn’t.

All of this was brewing ever since Shadye died.  And, when the necromancers as a whole were defeated, it exploded. 

16 Responses to “Emily and the White Council”

  1. Jared November 25, 2021 at 12:56 pm #

    This was fun! I hope this is a prelude to something more!!! Lol

  2. Dan November 25, 2021 at 1:35 pm #

    That and the fact a lot of them seemed to have very selfish goals in the messed up magic of their world killing her meant getting her stuff.

  3. Allan Mitchell November 25, 2021 at 4:11 pm #

    Hope more Emily books are coming……

  4. AC Young November 25, 2021 at 4:30 pm #

    Thankyou for the explanation.

    With hindsight (I didn’t see the vicious U-turn by Master Lucknow coming) my analysis is that up until the necromancers were defeated the benefits of Emily’s existence vastly outweighed the disbenefits. As the only living magician known to have defeated multiple necromancers she is a powerful piece on their chessboard. Yes, she had come up with inventions that upset the established order, had undermined at least one monarchy, had sown the seeds that others nurtured into revolution – but if a necromancer attacked the Allied Lands (and one would sooner or later), every magician who had defeated a necromancer would be needed on the front lines.

    Once the necromancers were defeated the balance shifted. She was still Void’s daughter, she was still a Baroness of Zangaria in her own right, she was still Void’s apprentice. But she was no longer a crucial element in the war against the necromancers. And that meant that in the eyes of some (Master Lucknow e.g.) she was now more of a liability than an asset – and the longer she was allowed to make her changes the more of a liability she would become. So in their eyes she had to go.

    • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard November 25, 2021 at 4:38 pm #

      And while killing Emily won’t stop what she “already started”, in their minds a Dead Emily couldn’t create more problems.

      While I suspect a Dead Emily would cause more problems, especially when she was dead at their hands, they likely weren’t thinking clearly.

      • Robert kaliski November 25, 2021 at 11:09 pm #

        Void for one would be unhappy that she was dead and that would have been a very bad thing for the council. If nothing else he would be expected to avenge his daughter. Again a very bad thing for them.

      • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard November 25, 2021 at 11:15 pm #

        She also had friends in Powerful positions.

        But I’m also thinking about the Levelers who have adopted Emily as “Their Own”.

        The White Council would have created a Martyr for the Levelers’ Cause by killing Emily.

  5. Kris November 25, 2021 at 5:47 pm #

    Thanks!! That makes soo much sense. 👍👍😁

  6. Robert kaliski November 25, 2021 at 7:01 pm #

    I thought the reasons for the White Councils actions were obvious and expected. They did something very American that we do with foreign powers. We try to contain them and if that fails we crush them.
    Further we as the readers know Emily is a hero. The mages and nobles see her through their world filter and probably wonder when she is going to turn on them and take control. After all that is what they would do to protect what they have. They further may be afraid Void is behind her and they know he is totally ruthless. Their error was not trying to silence Emily but waiting too long. Their efforts to get rid of her would have worked if they pushed before Void taught her. As we found out he was giving her the tools she needed to take over.

  7. George Phillies November 25, 2021 at 9:38 pm #

    If the white council had succeeded, some number of people would have become annoyed with them.

  8. stephen November 26, 2021 at 10:16 am #

    Just reading this reminds me of Emily’s adventures in the nameless world.
    Might be time for Emily to do that mediator’s job. A new series name might be needed as schooled in magic no longer stands true.

  9. Fahnir November 27, 2021 at 1:55 am #

    What makes no sense to me is 1.) Void was believed to be her father; 2.) Void is immensely powerful–the most powerful sorcerer alive; 3.) Void is completely ruthless to the point of making people disappear; and 4.) Vengeance is completely normal in this world–Ditto for Queen Alassa and Melissa’s family (who are themselves immensely powerful in magical society and who owe Emily their lives). Everyone knows the legal case is B.S. How did they think they were going to survive killing Emily? That is what made no sense to me.

    • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard November 27, 2021 at 2:09 am #

      Short Term thinking on their part is very likely. (IE Not thinking about what happens after Emily’s death.)

      It’s also possible (although not supported by text evidence) that some might realize what would happen to them but might be willing to risk it as their deaths would be worth it if Emily is permanently gone. IE Sacrificing themselves to Save The Allied Lands.

      • Fahnir November 29, 2021 at 11:42 pm #

        Not thinking about starting a blood feud in a feudal society?? As far as they knew, Void would have killed not only them (around a dozen attacked Emily during her date with her boyfriend), but their children, children’s children, their entire extended family–blood feud–and these people spent entire arcs of the series thinking about Emily…still doesn’t work for me…

      • Robert kaliski November 30, 2021 at 7:24 am #

        The White Council sounded egotistical enough to think they could take Void with their combined powers. Japan attacked the United States believing the massive industrial and population edge of the US was a hollow threat. By presenting him with a an accomplished feat they could beg forgivness rather than permission.

        The Council also did not know or even dream of the tactics and tricks that multiplied Void’s power. Emily was probably not the first scion of a mage that the Council in its history had put down. The fact they had the method in place to take a mage’s power away seems to point to a reason for suchbold thinking.

      • Jared November 30, 2021 at 8:38 am #

        I agree, and I think they didn’t really understand just how powerful he really was. Even without his tricks, he had an understanding of magic that really put him in a class above lone power IMO.

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