History Literature / BestServedCold

15th Jun '16 2:54:59 PM shadowblack
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* StraightGay: Ganmark is an experienced general and one of the finest swordsmen in the world. He was expelled from the Union army for a sexual indiscretion with another officer. He rules out a BiTheWay scenario when he tells Monza that her brother was more his type. He misses out on being a ManlyGay with his "soft" face, watery eyes and general effeteness.

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* StraightGay: StraightGay:
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Ganmark is an experienced general and one of the finest swordsmen in the world. He was expelled from the Union army for a sexual indiscretion with another officer. He rules out a BiTheWay scenario when he tells Monza that her brother was more his type. He misses out on being a ManlyGay with his "soft" face, watery eyes and general effeteness.
14th Jun '16 11:39:37 PM ThraggLootrippa
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* CynicismCatalyst: Everyone in Styria had one at some point, but Monza and Benna got theirs fairly early. After their father died, Monza worked her hands to the bone to singlehandedly manage their tiny farm and support Benna. She barely got any money for her work, and was setting up for the second harvest when looters from a war across the border pillaged their home. An ex-soldier who lived in the village got a group together to raid the looters in return, which Monza and Benna joined up with. Both killed and stole from three of the looters, and that got the siblings more money than a considerable number of good harvests would. Monza and Benna joined up with the Thousand Swords after this lesson. Monza getting thrown off a cliff after raising Duke Orso to power sent her even farther down into cynicism.


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* {{Deconstruction}}: The plot revolves entirely on the premise that revenge, while a glorified pursuit in stories, is self-destructive and only causes people to come after you in kind. After her surgery, Monza has a clear choice of leaving Styria with her fortune, or pursuing the most powerful man in the land in order to kill him and his associates. She chooses the latter, and her vendetta ends up with a lot more people killed than what she set out for, good men injured, and escalating the war that Monza gets tangled up in.
** Everyone in Styria also has a low opinion of honor, and characters take turns savaging the idea that killing people in an honorable way is any different than stabbing them in the back.


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* NoOneShouldSurviveThat: The first chapter of the book ends with Monza being nearly garroted by a wire that digs into her hand, stabbed by a sword, throat cut, and then thrown off of a steep cliff. The only reason she survives the landing is that she landed on her brother's corpse on the way down, and that there was a reclusive surgeon nearby. This was solely due to the fact that he's occasionally found dead bodies where she landed, showing that Duke Orso used this method in the past quite well.


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* SillyRabbitIdealismIsForKids: Used brutally by Monza. When Caul Shivers arrived in Styria, he was a idealistic man who wanted to stop killing and become a better person. After coming into Monza's employ, she systematically criticizes his hopes and dreams, and does it well enough that he eventually starts coming to her line of thought. Then he gets his eye burned out during a torture session, and Shivers becomes a full-blown killer who doesn't care about much of anything anymore. She actually finds herself sickened by what she's done to the former idealist, but by then it is far too late.


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** The Queen of the Union, formerly Princess Terez, was married to King Luthar for political reasons. She and her husband make a show of their matrimony, but as Monza recounts, Queen Terez was far more interested in her than in her brother when they met.
2nd Jun '16 5:59:45 AM WalkingTheShades
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To do this, she assembles a team of oddballs; a warrior Northman failing at becoming a better man, a numbers-obsessed ex-convict, a pompous poisoner and his gluttonous assistant, an ex-torturer, and the alcoholic old mercenary captain that Monza replaced. The task begins easily enough, but Monza soon discovers that going after the powerful has consequences  to her, to her companions, and to the fate of Styria as a whole.


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To do this, she assembles a [[RagtagBunchOfMisfits team of oddballs; oddballs]]; a warrior Northman [[ReformedButRejected failing at becoming a better man, man]], a [[PsychopathicManchild numbers-obsessed ex-convict, ex-convict]], a pompous poisoner [[LargeHam pompous]] [[ProfessionalKiller poisoner]] and his gluttonous assistant, [[DeceptiveDisciple assistant]], an ex-torturer, [[TortureTechnician ex-torturer]], and the alcoholic {{the alcoholic}} old [[PrivateMilitaryContractors mercenary captain captain]] that Monza replaced. The task begins easily enough, but Monza soon discovers that going after the powerful has consequences  to her, to her companions, and to the fate of Styria as a whole.

8th Jan '16 2:23:23 PM Baeraad555
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* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Monza. [[spoiler:Cosca nails it, near the end, after she repeats that "Mercy and cowardice are the same": "Do you know why I always loved you, Monza? Even after you betrayed me? More, after you betrayed me? Because I know you don't really believe any of that rubbish. Those are the lies you tell yourself so you can live with what you've done. What you've had to do."]]

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* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Monza. [[spoiler:Cosca nails it, near the end, after she repeats that "Mercy "[[ArcWords Mercy and cowardice are the same": same]]": "Do you know why I always loved you, Monza? Even after you betrayed me? More, after you betrayed me? Because I know you don't really believe any of that rubbish. Those are the lies you tell yourself so you can live with what you've done. What you've had to do."]]
8th Jan '16 2:02:44 PM Baeraad555
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* EqualOpportunityEvil: At the start of the novel, Duke Orso's inner circle includes a warrior woman and an openly gay man, both of which many otherwise "nicer" rulers would never even have considered employing. It's explicitly noted that Orso can be [[PragmaticVillainy very open-minded if there's the services of a skilled fighter in it for him.]]
17th Nov '15 3:30:31 AM MadSpy
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* EarnYourHappyEnding: [[spoiler:Monza ends up as Duchess of Talins, refuses to become beholden to any faction, and looks like she's going to make a strong but fair ruler with a strong practical streak. Certainly, one better than the standard run of city rulers one's encountered in the rest of the book.]]

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* EarnYourHappyEnding: [[spoiler:Monza ends up as Duchess of Talins, refuses to become beholden to any faction, and looks like she's going to make a strong but fair ruler with a strong practical streak. Certainly, one better than the standard run of city rulers one's encountered in the rest of the book.]]
17th Nov '15 3:27:17 AM MadSpy
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* AntiHero: Monza. It's clear that she's not a nice person right from the beginning, but Orza;s brutal betrayal of her keeps her sympathetic. However, as the story goes along, it becomes increasingly clear that Monza's revenge isn't exactly justice, and that she and her brother kind of had it coming.

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* AntiHero: Monza. It's clear that she's not a nice person right from the beginning, but Orza;s Orza's brutal betrayal of her keeps her sympathetic. However, as the story goes along, it becomes increasingly clear that Monza's revenge isn't exactly justice, and that she and her brother kind of had it coming.
12th Nov '15 12:59:35 PM shadowblack
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* SexMontage: Used brilliantly in a scene that initially looks like [[spoiler: Monza and Shivers]] patching things up, but slowly reveals that, while both are having sex, it isn't with each other.
* StraightGay: Ganmark is an experienced general and one of the finest swordsmen in the world. He was was expelled from the Union army for a sexual indiscretion with another officer. He rules out a BiTheWay scenario when he tells Monza that her brother was more his type. He misses out on being a ManlyGay with his "soft" face, watery eyes and general effeteness.

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* SexMontage: Used brilliantly in a scene that initially looks like [[spoiler: Monza [[spoiler:Monza and Shivers]] patching things up, but slowly reveals that, while both are having sex, it isn't with each other.
* TheStarscream: Every captain general of the Thousand Swords has been deposed by his or her right-hand man. [[spoiler:Cosca learns from the ordeal. After being reinstated he begins offing the generals who supported his overthrow.]]
* StraightGay: Ganmark is an experienced general and one of the finest swordsmen in the world. He was was expelled from the Union army for a sexual indiscretion with another officer. He rules out a BiTheWay scenario when he tells Monza that her brother was more his type. He misses out on being a ManlyGay with his "soft" face, watery eyes and general effeteness.



* ThereIsNoKillLikeOverkill: To make sure [[spoiler: Mauthis]] is good and dead, Morveer goes ahead and poisons [[spoiler:every single ledger in the bank, killing an extra forty or so people in the process]].

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* ThereIsNoKillLikeOverkill: To make sure [[spoiler: Mauthis]] [[spoiler:Mauthis]] is good and dead, Morveer goes ahead and poisons [[spoiler:every single ledger in the bank, killing an extra forty or so people in the process]].
12th Nov '15 12:26:49 PM CaptainCrawdad
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* TheStarscream: Every captain general of the Thousand Swords has been deposed by his or her right-hand man. [[spoiler:Cosca learns from the ordeal. After being reinstated he begins offing the generals who supported his overthrow.]]
12th Nov '15 12:25:09 PM CaptainCrawdad
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** Monza and her group would be a CarnivalOfKillers themselves were they not the protagonists: lead by a [[PrivateMilitaryContractors mercenary]] with a [[TheDreaded terrible reputation]] (Monza herself), the group has a BarbarianHero (Shivers), a MasterPoisoner (Morveer) and [[PerkyFemaleMinion apprentice]] (Day), a freelance TortureTechnician and InformationBroker (Vitari), a [[ChronicBackstabbingDisorder backstabbing]] [[PrivateMilitaryContractors mercenary]] (Cosca), and a [[TheSociopath psychopath]] who is [[TheRainman good with numbers]] (Friendly).

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** Monza and her group would be a CarnivalOfKillers themselves were they not the protagonists: lead by a [[PrivateMilitaryContractors mercenary]] with a [[TheDreaded terrible reputation]] (Monza herself), the group has a BarbarianHero (Shivers), a MasterPoisoner (Morveer) and [[PerkyFemaleMinion apprentice]] (Day), a freelance TortureTechnician and InformationBroker (Vitari), a [[ChronicBackstabbingDisorder backstabbing]] [[PrivateMilitaryContractors mercenary]] (Cosca), and a [[TheSociopath psychopath]] who is a [[TheRainman good with numbers]] number-obsessed]] mob enforcer (Friendly).
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