Spoilers ahead! I'm not recapping these chapters in Bloodlines and The Golden Lily, but I do refer to some things that happen in them. These posts are to give some commentary and behind-the-scenes info for people who want to read along (or re-read) with me or walk down memory lane. If you haven't read the books, you might have some surprises ruined. So maybe go grab a copy and read along as we count down to The Indigo Spell! :)
THESE POSTS ARE NOT ABOUT THE INDIGO SPELL! You're safe if you've read the first two books in the series.
The Golden Lily, Chapter 2
Remember when I said that I catch people up over a few chapters? Yesterday’s chapter went over the Alchemists, and now it’s time to learn about Sydney’s charges in Palm Springs. And what better way than through Sydney’s email? I’m particularly in love with Angeline’s all-caps forwarding and Adrian’s plaintive prison letter. I wrote that long before the recent incarnation of Les Miserables in theaters and thought maybe I was being too obscure with the 24601 reference. Now I see references like that left and right, so I guess I’ve gone mainstream.
I’m a big lover of contrasts, and you’re probably well aware by now of how my books flip between wacky and serious. It’s why the succubus series can have angels in Santa suits on one page and Georgina’s heart being ripped out in the next. After the dark tone of chapter one, I had to completely turn it around here. I love that talented, brainy Sydney, member of an elite and far-reaching organization that’s trying to save humanity, finds herself having to get Angeline out of trouble for violating the dress code with homemade jean shorts. I remember at the time, my editor worried it was too ridiculous, but I pleaded to keep that scene in because I think it’s just a great example of the humor that fills these books and offsets the hard-hitting emotional gut punches.
Oh, Angeline. Angeline, Angeline, Angeline. She’s a tricky person to write. Her potential for comic relief is off the charts. She’s a classic fish-out-of-water character, enhanced by the fact that even among her own people, she had little impulse control. She does what she wants! At the same time, I don’t want her to be completely absurd. There’s an aching vulnerability to her she hides that needs to be taken seriously. Even though she’s longed to be a part of the outside world, she’s constantly aware of how beyond her some parts of it are. She’s always trying to catch up and keep up, and that’s a frightening place to be. It lends a poignancy to her character and makes her incredibly complex.
Fun fact: I originally had her make the jean shorts with a butter knife. My editor pointed out the logistical difficulties of that, and even I had to agree. So, we went with an all-purpose knife.