In the sixth chapter of Melting Stones, Dedicate Myrrhtide continues to be the worst, but perhaps there is an explanation for that??? If you’re intrigued, then it’s time for Mark to read Melting Stones.
Every time I think that I can’t dislike Myrrhtide more, he goes ahead and proves that he should be disliked with a passion I’m not sure I have. (Just kidding, I’m so good at holding grudges.) But why is that? Why is it so easy to hate the guy? And more importantly, what does that mean for Melting Stones?
Myrrhtide is bitter, cruel, and arrogant, plain and simple. Watching him interact with Evvy is unbearable because he has no problem insulting and berating a fourteen-year-old. I think there’s a particular heinousness in an adult picking on a teenager, and I know that’s part of the reason why I despise him as much as I do. He knows that he’s got more power than Evvy because he’s older, and he has no problem exploiting that power. He goads Evvy until she’s irritated, then utilizes his position as an elder/superior so that he can demonize her for being immature. Like, who thinks this is an acceptable way to talk to someone?
“In two years you’ll be sixteen. It won’t matter then who your friends are. You’ll be out on your ear, Evumeimei. Out on the street where you belong.” He smiled cruelly. “Unless you take your vows to the temple. But you’d have to care about us â€“ and that’s not a thing you can lie about.”
“Spoken like a true guttersnipe.” He sounded pleased. “Take, take, take. Never give anything back. Why the temple keeps allowing the likes of you inâ€“”
Gods, he’s like half the assholes I met in college who were convinced I’d cheated my way to university, or that I was only there to improve diversity. It was impossible for them to consider that maybe I was talented, and maybe I was special. We’ve already seen Myrrhtide do the same thing with Evvy, despite how many times Rosethorn tries to assure him that there’s a reason why Evvy is around. And the worst part is that ROSETHORN SHOULDN’T HAVE TO CONSTANTLY ADDRESS THIS. HE SHOULD HAVE ACCEPTED THIS THE FIRST TIME. I mean, how can one man believe so many contradictory things??? How can someone who is a “guttersnipe” also be a “spoiled brat”? She’s either poor and came from poverty, or she’s gotten everything she’s ever wanted in life. You can’t have both at the same time. Of course, in Myrrhtide’s mind, anyone like Evvy getting any attention is more than they deserve. Right? That’s how he views her: as undeserving of literally anything.
I wonder, then, if Evvy’s anger and restlessness has something to do with her location. She’s always been the kind of character to speak her mind, and yet, her behavior is slightly different than what we saw in Street Magic. That could partly be due to her growing up, but throughout chapter six, she describes an odd sensation within her blood:
Normally I would have told the rock not to be silly, but my veins were filled with hot, fizzing blood. It was like what I’d sensed in those old power places, only stronger. If Jayat and Tahar had drawn this kind of strength from there, I was surprised Jayat could bear to ride along so pokily.
What the hell is happening beneath the earth in the Battle Islands? See, I’m getting the sense that whatever this is affects Evvy’s emotional state as well as causing the constant tremors. That’s not meant to discount her reaction to Myrrhtide because fuck him forever. I’m more concerned about her restlessness because this means the magic can influence her physical body in ways she can’t control. (Well, she might be able to later, but for now, it affects her regardless.) I admit that I have no clue what’s going on here, but I know that it just feels wrong. Someone has to be doing this, right?
Anyway, let’s just take a moment to rag on Myrrhtide one more time before I close this out. After Evvy saves the whole group from certain death due to a rock avalanche after another quake, THIS IS WHAT MYRRHTIDE SAYS.
“It’s just raw power. There wasn’t any art to it.” Fusspot was red-faced as he fiddled with his horse’s reins. “Thank you.” He said it to the horse’s side.
I’d say he can’t get any worse, but I know now that this is impossible. HE’S PERPETUALLY AWFUL.
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