In the seventh part of Snuff, Vimes further pursues the secret of the Hall and the Shires. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read Discworld.
Trigger Warning: For blood/gore
Oh, so now we’re getting into the meat of this book! Ah, what a set-up, y’all, and I love it when you get to a point in a book where you finally know why all the shit that came before is there. We had to have that bit in the beginning with Vetinari about goblins; we needed Vimes to get to the Hall; and it was IMPERATIVE that Vimes get to a point where he met a sizable number of people around The Hall and in the Shires so that he could begin to suss out a possible crime. This works so well here at this point to build up suspense! Y’all, I was truly entertained my how this chapter unfolded, even if I did not get to Jethro’s reveal. YET. Yet! It might still come!!!
Before I get to the utter joy of Sybil’s dinner party, I just want to express how happy I am that Willikins is finally getting to be in the spotlight. Not only am I learning more about him, but he is flat-out the most entertaining part of Snuff so far. He’s hilarious, I’m in love with the way he talks, and as I’ve mentioned on video before, he gives the story a buddy cop vibe. I have enjoyed seeing Vimes paired up with Angua and Carrot a lot, but he’s got a completely different rapport with Vimes, and it’s a goddamn treat to get to experience it. THEY WORK SO WELL TOGETHER.
The Dinner Party
Okay, look, I get that I misread (on video) this dinner party as being more posh than it was, but there’s still a dynamic here that’s fun, which is Vimes doing whatever he can within the social rules of a situation to make fun of other people and piss them off. Vimes toes the line here, though he almost leaps across it a few times. Like the scene at the Goblin’s Head with Jethro, Vimes acts as he does in order to get these people to reveal information they otherwise would not reveal. And he does it in such insidious ways, too!
It all starts with Colonel Makepeace, the retired “warrior” who was once part of the Light Dragons in Pseudopolis. Vimes relates to him, makes it clear he has knowledge of something that’s faded into history, and then places the bait out by shifting the conversation to undesirables. While the colonel never says what undesirables are in the Shires, his lack of an answer is a clue in and of itself. Pratchett keeps this up throughout, too! When Vimes sees the colonel and his wife squirming, trying to avoid sharing too much, it tells Vimes that he’s close to some sort of truth. The Colonel wanted to say something, but his wife stopped him. On top of that, Vimes continually teases all the guests with the knowledge that while this isn’t his jurisdiction, he would feel compelled to arrest someone in the Shires if they did commit an egregious crime.
So, they know that Vimes has some power here. Hell, maybe not even power, but he’s motivated and will do something if someone tells him… well, anything at this point. The real interesting shit, however, happens when the topic of goblins is brought up. They’re troublesome in the area, apparently, and the way they’re spoken about, it’s clear most of these people see them as vermin and nothing more. Most, I said, because one person has a very interesting reaction: Miss Beedle. Why doesn’t she speak during this time? Why does she frown so much when others talk about them? Why does the Colonel’s wife “look at her as one might glance at a child who was doing something wrong”? I assume, then, that Miss Beedle holds a different opinion on goblins. Or perhaps she doesn’t mind them being around? Or maybe she knows something about what’s happening to the goblins??? I don’t fucking know, but I really hope that Vimes goes and speaks with her privately? I NEED TO KNOW! So… does that mean there’s also a clue in that conversation about Jethro and masters??? I don’t know… possibly???
Well, look, I did sort of call it; I said earlier on video that I probably wouldn’t learn what Jethro was going to tell Vimes for a long time because this is a Pratchett book and Pratchett has constantly thrown me off the trail during this series. But y’all, I certainly did not expect Willikins and Vimes to find a pool of blood up on that hill and a severed goblin claw. Is it possible that Jethro was murdered before he could blow the whistle? Yeah, unfortunately, that’s very possible. And, as Vimes notes, it doesn’t look good that he fought Jethro earlier in the day, giving him a prime motive to murder the blacksmith. Was this all a set-up because someone overheard Jethro and Vimes? WHY IS THERE A GOBLIN CLAW IN A GIANT POOL OF BLOOD?
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