Thursday, 14 August 2014

Pathetic Fallacy III

Carl, having "'...ridden no earthly horse...'" (Time Patrol, p. 456) since the previous night, must tell Ulrica and Alawin that all who went against Ermanaric are dead, with the bleak consolation that many on Ermanaric's side, including two of his sons, are also dead while he himself is "'...maimed and lamed...'" (ibid.) Poul Anderson did not invent this ending but inherited it from Volsungasaga.

Needless to say, nature matches the characters' feelings:

"Morning brought rain. Driven on a hooting wind..." (ibid.)

"Darkness within seemed deepened by emptiness." (ibid.)

And, when Carl leaves for the last time:

"He strode through the shadows, out the door, into the rain and the wind." (p. 459)

Thus end seventy two years and four generations of one time traveler's interactions with that Gothic family.

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