[LMB] The Nature of Demons

Tony Zbaraschuk tzbarasc at lasierra.edu
Tue Jul 27 23:24:59 BST 2021

On Tue, Jul 27, 2021 at 4:55 PM Gwynne Powell <gwynnepowell at hotmail.com>

> Pen's comments about demons are interesting; all demons have the
> same power. And the same amount of power. The difference is in
> the cleverness and skill of the sorcerer, to use that power most
> effectively.

That one was interesting.  I often got the idea that there were demons of
some considerable difference in power (most notably Joen's demon).
Possibly Penric is giving Alixtra the simple version for now.

(This is definitely a plus for Penric, who is totally into
> the idea of learning, studying, finding out things... Although he does
> get a bit distracted sometimes.)

Yes, and yes.  Plus Desdemona has quite a lot of experience to feed him.
One does wonder what sorts of adventures some of her previous hosts had,
that they learned things like "how to rust a blade" or some of those other
fine details.

I also wonder if Penric is going to have another effect on his world,
> and on sorcerers, to come; up to now, most sorcerers were Temple-
> trained, and then they were awarded their demon. A few, like Dubro
> and Penric, did things the other way round. But they trained (at least
> for some of the time) with Temple divines.
> What they don't seem to have done is train with other sorcerers. In
> fact, we're told that demons don't get on (they don't seem to bond
> much, although mainly the ones we see are scared of Des, who isn't
> an ordinary demon.)  And they'd shed too much chaos (which can
> be controlled). Penric has been training Dubro for some time. And
> now he's training Alixtra. And their demons seem to settle down
> after a while, and get used to the idea.

Yes.  This does seem to be a bit out of the ordinary.  One wonders if it
will last, or if it's just a matter of Des so obviously outclassing the
others that the natural "shed chaos, fight for dominance" thing never has
time to get underway.  Or is Desdemona more practiced at doing things and
therefore less likely to leave unintentional chaos in her wake?

There's been a few books - rare and hard to get. Now Penric is
> printing plenty of copies of 'Demons for Dummies', etc, plus he's
> training fellow sorcerers. This is a massive difference to the way
> demons have been handled. And sorcerers, too.

Well, Ruchia started writing the book first, so Pen is building on other
folk's foundations.  (I am also not sure how much of this will have spread
to Chalion in the next 250 years or so, but maybe we just never had a
viewpoint where "yes, Penric is the standard authority on the subject, read
him" was something the reader would hear.)

Tony Z

Tony Zbaraschuk
Bookworm, talker, learner
Et vocavit Deus, "Fiat lux!"

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