42. An Unsettling Preview of a Mysterious Adult State

Soundtrack and Video: Adam Ant, “Wonderful,” 2011 live acoustic Aramil and Valentine are gathering up practice weapons and boxing gloves, and preparing to spar in the atrium. As Valentine unlocks the French doors that lead from the armory to the garden, they hear someone singing, first softly, then at full volume. Valentine recognizes Inglorion’s voice, and is […]

30. Listening for a Miss

Life in the Underdark as Marquis Theates sounds exotic, but at times it resembles the life of a mid-level manager in corporate America, seen through infrared vision. Over the next few days, Inglorion attends a lot of meetings and briefings, and holds some. He writes and reads reports, resumes his usual alliances and vendettas. All […]

33. Valykria

Another episode of Man Raised by Spiders, the coming-of-age story of Valentine Shelawn. The next few days of travel are uneventful. Though Aramil tries to take an interest in his surroundings, he’s subdued and sad as he reflects on the consequences of his actions. Valentine, on the other hand, is profoundly relieved to be freed […]

4. Further Training

The next day, a footman delivers an elaborately folded note from Aramil. “What the fuck is this?” Valentine asks, “an origami swan?” The footman shrugs. “His handwriting is terrible. Can you make this out?” “He’d like a rapier lesson this afternoon, if convenient.” No valid excuse rises to mind, so Valentine scrawls a time early […]

2. Theates

The second episode of Man Raised by Spiders, the coming-of-age story of Valentine Claudius Shelawn. The next morning, Valentine receives a dinner invitation from his cousin Sieia, Xardic’s wife and, apparently, one of his many living Shelawn relatives. It’s delivered by a servant who was told to wait for an answer. Valentine gives a verbal […]