- Eldest Whistler, for all that she's an Aloof Eldest Sister, causes a lot of these with her intense familial loyalty and her kindness to her insecure, vulnerable brother Jerin.
"We don't blame you, honey.""She's a princess. All her life people have obeyed her commands. You're a boy. All your life you have listened to others. It was up to her to stop at any no you have, even if it was whispered."
- She finds a stripped and murdered man she vaguely knew and takes her coat off to cover him with, "her eyes furious". She's then desperately afraid for her little brothers and has to go back to protect them.
- This is a world where a man who's had premarital sex is often considered be ruined forever. Eldest is enraged when she believes Ren raped her brother, but cools to hear his explanations and is gentle when he bursts into tears.
"There is redemption for the innocent."
- Eldest pretty much constantly insisting that her brother is not livestock.
- How she gradually sheds her hatred of Ren and comes to see her as a good woman.
- That Effortless Amazonian Lift, and the first time Jerin ever sees her blush.
- "Rescuing" Cullen from his family, especially since Jerin, hearing the plan, says, "Ah, a husband raid. What us Whistlers do best." Eldest's indulgent affection for Cullen.
- The letter she writes to Jerin. He may be a boy and she may condescend to him a little, but she does believe in his competence and some ability to take care of himself.
- The Big Damn Heroes moment at the end of the book.
- The distressing tangle of what to do with Eldie Porter is covered on Cycle of Revenge and You Killed My Father, but Eldest comes up with a third option.
"Chin up. Eyes front. Show no fear. You're a Whistler - and your family will always be there if you need us."
- The wedding.
- Mother Elder giving Corelle a chance to make up for her poor decisions.
"You can't make good decisions as an adult if you were never allowed to make any decisions while you were a child."
- The Whistler sisters are too proud to admit total ignorance of the bell-pull system. Without being told, Jerin knows to ask for them.
- Sometimes it's the little things, such as when reluctant bride Trini finally takes Jerin's hand and addresses him affectionately. She doesn't have a problem with him as a person, she just didn't really want to remarry. Given how brutal the princesses' first husband was toward her, her attitude is understandable. It's still really nice when she does warm up to her new husband, though.
- Trini, period. She is very protective of Jerin, and just as keen on riding to his rescue when he is kidnapped as her sisters.
- Preparing for a hot bath in the family bath house (a highly unusual amenity) Jerin reflects on how the said house was just one of the several ways his grandmothers turned themselves inside-out to please their captured husband. Basically what Alannon wanted he got - he seems to have been happy with his low-class soldier wives.
- When Jerin is in the process of going catatonic with worry that the princesses will reject him after being kidnapped Cira reassures him that even if everyone else abandons him she will stay by his side, regardless of whether he is seen as unclean or not. Considering their society's views on male purity and the true nature of her identity this is a really big deal.