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YMMV / The Wayfarer Redemption

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  • Alas, Poor Scrappy: Isfrael wasn't very likeable, especially towards the end, but his death and subsequent soul-rape at Qeteb's hands was still more than he deserved.
  • Alternate Character Interpretation
    • Axis: prophesied hero portrayed warts-and-all, or Designated Hero who crossed the Moral Event Horizon with his slaughter of Borneheld?
    • Azhure: brave heroine from humble beginnings (or so she thinks) with a sympathetic backstory; or character who, after a token Dark and Troubled Past, gets everything handed to her on a silver platter via authorial favoritism whether she actually wants it or not?
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    • StarDrifter: lovable Handsome Lech or genuine sexual predator?
  • Cliché Storm: Whether it's a good one, however, depends on your perspective. To be fair, both trilogies were written in the mid 90s, so it wouldn't have been considered as cliche.
  • Complete Monster:
    • Artor, The Plow God and the God of the Acharites, was once a Sufficiently Advanced Alien who saw the Land of Tencendor and decided he wanted it for himself. To that end, he imprisoned the Star Gods and led the humans, whom he called Acharites, into a racist war against the Icarii and the Avar. When the Acharites won the war he proceeded to have them cut nearly all of the Avar's forests down to reduce the power of a competing goddess, the Mother. When a prophecy threatens the destruction of his people, he does nothing, not seeing it as his problem and blaming rival gods when naturally his people's belief in him begins to fade. He shows no care at all for the well-being of his worshippers, enjoying torturing one to give him power, stepping on another, and brainwashing a village to perform blood sacrifices in his name before he is killed.
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    • WolfStar SunSoar, Ninth Talon of the Icarii, may present himself as well-intentioned, but is actually one of the most monstrous characters in the entire series. After getting his wife to murder the previous Talon so he could take the throne of the Icarii, he began experimenting on the Star Gate and started throwing children with magical potential through the gate, including his niece, pregnant wife and unborn child, before he is killed. However, he returns Back from the Dead through the Star Gate, writes a prophecy that will result in the deaths of thousands of people, and sets out to ensure this prophecy can come true. To that end he tricks the last remaining of the Charonite race into dying in a horrific way, trains the Antichrist in dark magic, and mind rapes a teenager into making a Deal with the Devil, among other crimes. In the second series he rapes and impregnates his granddaughter and assists in having her grandmother's soul possess her body, and when she regains control of her body he manipulates her into a relationship with him.
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    • Sheol, the Demon of Despair, is one of the six Timekeeper demons and The Dragon of the group. While the body of her boss, Qeteb, remains incomplete, she is in charge. In the past she along with her fellow Demons destroyed hundreds if not thousands of worlds, including the Earth. When her and her fellow demons first break through the Star Gate into the land of Tencendor she demands the honor of sowing madness through the land first. Under her influence, thousands of people lose their minds, including a woman who strangles her toddler with a clothesline and then kills herself in despair. Leading the demons, Sheol then proceeds to rebuild her boss's body, fouling the five sacred lakes of Tencendor in the process. When she and her Demons capture WolfStar trying to use their magic against them, Sheol orders each of her fellow demons to rape him repeatedly for their amusement. When her trial happens, she is offered the choice to repent or choose to be evil, and she freely chooses evil and torments Faraday, the one giving her the test.
    • The aforementioned Qeteb, the Midday Demon, is the boss of the Timekeeper Demons. In the past he and the other demons ended life on thousands of worlds, including the Earth. When he is reformed in Tencendor after sustaining mortal wounds that destroyed his body, he immediately drives every creature and being not under magical protection insane. He is a Bad Boss, frequently beating his own demons and grabbing Sheol by the hair and throwing her into a wall minutes after his resurrection. He repeatedly rapes a soulless woman and later has one of his demons possess her, and taunts Faraday about raping and dismembering her. His ultimate goal is the cessation of the Star Dance, which would end all life in the universe.
  • Creator's Pet: Inverted with Faraday, beloved by the fanbase and loathed by the writer, who wanted to kill her off repeatedly.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Faraday. Douglass made no gripes about hating the character, wanting to kill her off as early as Enchanter. The only reason she survives as long as she does and makes it out alive and happy was because everybody Douglass knew pressured her to play out her character completely (which makes sense, as even early on Faraday is an important character to the plot).
    • StarDrifter, one of few major characters to generally remain on the fandom's positive side. While not immune to self-pity, he nonetheless better recognises his own flaws than most of the "heroes", making him a lot more tolerable (and downright likeable); by the second trilogy, where Axis and Azhure became self-righteous assholes, StarDrifter is the Only Sane Man and much more considerate towards women than he used to be.
  • Jerkass Woobie: There's more then a few.
    • Borneheld, believe it or not. The sole reason he is such a loathsome asshole is because the world was repeatedly telling him "screw you Borneheld." He was a Butt-Monkey on multiple occasions, almost enough to qualify him for the Chew Toy trope, and rarely did anything ever go good for him without the help of the Seneschal's team of professional Smug Snakes. He winds up slowly falling out of favor, driven a bit crazy enough to murder his dad, and then he instantly regrets it. He is stuck in a marriage with a woman who would rather be banging, guess who, Axis. His own mother hits him when she sees him again and disowns him in favor of...guess who, Axis. He then loses all his battles against Axis, winds up dueling him, loses to Deus ex Machina, and gets his heart ripped out. The author is telling us something very strongly about this character.
    • Timozel. He starts as a kind-hearted boy who just wants recognition. He pledges himself to Faraday out of the goodness of his own heart. Then... He's brutally mind raped by Gorgrael and to a lesser extent WolfStar, then decides the easiest way to both protect Faraday and gain the respect he wants is to help Faraday's husband, Borneheld, because Faraday won't tell him about her own plans. Then Faraday rejects him and because of the mind rape, he's forced to become Gorgarael's general. And by the time he's found by Axis, he's been twisted and destroyed and Axis doesn't even hesitate once to kill him (though he's sad for the boy that Timozel once was, before all this). Wow.
      • To be fair, Timozel steadily Took a Level in Jerkass (starting in BattleAxe) and never let it go. Apparently he always felt some measure of hatred for Axis (who was his mother Embeth's lover after his father died), but it only slowly starts coming into play once Gorgrael gets his claws into him.
    • DragonStar qualifies at the beginning of Sinner. Sure, he'd been a jerk in the past and, but he's stuck as a mortal, watching as the whole rest of his family gets to live forever, and most people hate him for a reason he doesn't even remember because of the way magic affected him.
      • You can tell how sympathetic a character tends to be (in general) by how good their treatment of Drago is - which at the beginning accounts for Zenith (his younger sister), Zared, & Leah. That's it... There's a bit of Moral Dissonance involved, in that he's perfectly willing to plot revenge on everyone who mistreated him when given the chance, and he's not immune to self-pity. It takes being shown what he did to his brother Caellum through the latter's eyes for him to understand this, after which he steadily evolves into a Messianic Archetype.
    • To a certain degree, StarLaughter. For all that she's a ruthless, heartless bitch, she didn't start out that way, and much of her cruelty comes from her treatment at the hands of her husband/cousin WolfStar. Towards the end there's emphasis on the "Jerkass" part of this evaluation.
      • She wasn't the nicest person before she died though, given that she committed regicide and spends the second trilogy of the series helping the Timekeeper Demons (Aka the epitome of pure evil) go to Tencendor so they can lay waste to Tencendor and cause millions of casualties and disasters that forever change Tencendor for her own selfish agenda.
    • To a certain degree, WolfStar in the second trilogy. First he has to be the one to deliver the bad news about the Timekeeper Demons to the Star Gods and loses all his power, he loses Niah for a second time and during his mad plan to recreate Niah, ends up captured and raped by the Timekeeper Demons repeatedly and is badly injured for the rest of the trilogy because of it. But at the same time, he's a self-serving power hungry asshole who raped Zenith when Niah was sharing the body and planned to use Zenith to blackmail DragonStar.
    • He's not as bad as most of the above examples in the jerkass department, but Axis counts too. He was led to believe his whole life that his mother died cursing his death and has been lonely most of his life, not to mention the scorn he often experienced because of his being a bastard child of royalty. Despite this, he's still a pretty lousy parent and kind of an arrogant ass.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Borneheld crossed this by fatally, and remorselessly, backstabbing FreeFall (who was distracted advising Axis not to attack Borneheld). This is heavily lampshaded by the various reactions of Faraday, Axis and Magariz. The entire Seneschal crossed this line when it was revealed that their genocide of the Forbidden was founded on a complete lie. If this alone didn't send Jayme and Moryson over the Moral Event Horizon, the revelation that they had tortured and attempted to ruthlessly murder Rivkah certainly did.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: Caelum goes from borderline loathsome in Sinner to admirable in Pilgrim, and it's handled quite organically.
  • What an Idiot!: Isfrael's dealings with Qeteb in Crusader. Any reader can tell it's going to blow up in his face, but he's too much of an arrogant imbecile to recognise the signs.
  • The Woobie: The entire series has more than a few woobies.
    • Rivkah. At the young age of 15 she's betrothed to Searleas the Duke of Ichtar by her father and is trapped in a loveless marriage and gives birth to Borneheld and is completely miserable the entire time while her husband just plain didn't care. She then meets and is seduced by StarDrifter and she conceives Axis who she's led to believe died in childbirth. Rivkah is then carted away to die at the foot of the Icecarp Alps by Jayme and Moryson who end up raising Axis. Thankfully she's found not long afterwards by an Icarii and is healed back to full health and gets to marry StarDrifter, but the loss of their son hit both of them hard. They have a daughter together named EvenSong but due to the vast lifespan differences between humans and Icarii, Rivkah is aware that she will die well before her husband does and they slowly drift apart over time and by the time they learn their son lives and he comes into their lives, Rivkah and StarDrifter's marriage has disintegrated so far that they can't fix things. She ends up having to watch the civil war between Axis and Borneheld as her two sons try to kill each other because of the Prophecy and she can do nothing but watch. Plus it's revealed that the night before she was sent to marry Searleas, she married Magariz and she feels as if she betrayed him for 30 years. Thankfully she finds some happiness since she and Magariz rekindle their romance and end up renewing their wedding vows and thanks to Faraday, they have a son together and once the battles are all over, Rivkah gets to spend the rest of her days happily until dying from old age with Magariz.
    • Faraday. She's betrothed to Borneheld shortly after turning eighteen, falls in love with his brother Axis and then ends up trapped in the Prophecy of the Destroyer. And while Borneheld does try his best to be a good husband to her at first, he quickly turns into an abusive asshole who constantly cheats on her. Meanwhile her friend Timozel who pledged himself to be her Champion turns into an even bigger ass who treats her almost as badly as Borneheld does until she breaks the vows once she's had enough of his crap after she finally gets to be with Axis. And she only gets to be with Axis for eight days before leaving to fulfill her role as Tree Friend after it turns out that he's fallen madly in love with Azhure and they have a child together during the two years they hadn't seen one another, which she takes incredibly well and befriends Azhure. Unfortunately after finishing her role as Tree Friend, Faraday is kidnapped by Timozel who is now Gorgrael's man and she's raped by Gorgrael and then murdered by him in front of Axis who could do nothing to stop it without also being killed, but thanks to the Mother's intervention, Faraday becomes a doe and allowed to roam free unfettered of her problems as a human. Worst of all, she gives birth to Axis' child without him even knowing and Azhure ends up raising him and she can only see him from time to time but was never able to raise him.
      • And life only gets worse for her 40 years later in the second trilogy. She ends up becoming a human again and ends up having to play peacekeeper between Drago and pretty much everyone else and is understandably bitter about everything that happened to her. Despite her not wanting anything more then a platonic friendship with Drago due to her trauma from Borneheld's abuse, Axis' betrayal of her and Gorgrael raping and murdering her, she ends up falling in love with him and he with her and after talking with the Mother, she finally lets herself love him. While she is happy for a time, she ends up pushing him away and becomes afraid that Drago/DragonStar will let her die to save Tencendor like Axis did and ends up giving herself up to Qeteb due to her fears and believing she can't fight destiny. Qeteb ends up raping her several times and she's left broken and begging for death. Meanwhile, she's also the surrogate mother for a girl named Katie who is more or less the heart of Tencendor and if she dies, Tencendor dies. Faraday ends up having to watch Katie die when Qeteb gives Drago/DragonStar the Sadistic Choice to decide who dies and he picks Faraday. Thankfully after this, Faraday finally gets a happy ending where she can move past everything that happened and gets to be together happily with DragonStar who will never hurt her or treat her badly, but she went through six books of hell to get there.
    • Azhure also counts. Her mother ran off with a peddler when she was a child and her father Hagen physically abused her for over 20 years for any reason he could until she killed him and escaped to the Avar who rejected her because she dared to use violence to survive. While she finds happiness with the Icarii for a time because Rivkah/GoldFeather is there and she becomes friends with EvenSong and finds her true calling as a warrior, unfortunately StarDrifter who is Rivkah's husband becomes incredibly attracted to her and tries to seduce Azhure and for awhile she has to deal with his attraction to her until it finally ends with him accepting that it'll never happen and they become friends because she's with Axis. But meanwhile, Azhure is incredibly insecure about being with Axis because he longs for Faraday and she firmly believes that despite the happy life they build together and the son they have, Axis will forget about her for Faraday and she has to live with that for over a year. Besides this, Azhure has alot of self-loathing because of her inability to remember her mother's name and she's afraid that her son will forget her name. Due to rash actions on Axis' part, it's revealed that she has Trauma-Induced Amnesia and she actually watched Hagen kill her mother and Hagen's not really her father, her father is WolfStar SunSoar and she's an Icarii Enchanter, but can't use her powers normally like regular Enchanters do. After that, Axis is believed dead and her unborn twins try to kill her and nearly succeed and it turns out she and Axis are gods. Thankfully she becomes best friends with Faraday who doesn't blame her because Axis fell in love with her and they started a family and gracefully steps aside so Azhure can marry Axis and after coming into her powers, Azhure helps Axis destroy Gorgrael's army, go on a quick holiday with him before he leaves to kill Gorgrael and gets to live happily with him.
      • Unfortunately, things get worse for Azhure in the second trilogy too. First her daughter RiverStar is killed and it's believed Drago did it but it turns out Caelum did it and it's implied Azhure figured it all out., plus she loses all of her powers along with every Icarii Enchanter and the Star Gods, she loses the Alaunt to their true master and is forced to accept that Caelum has to die as a decoy StarSon and then has to face her failings as a mother and is powerless to stop the self-destruction of her family. Thankfully she gets to have a happy ending in the afterlife with Axis until the events of the Darkglass Mountain Trilogy.
    • Zenith definitely qualifies. She's spent her entire life having nightmares and memory blanks that end somewhere inbetween mildly bad like waking up on Sigholt's roof or really bad like waking up in the Iskruel Ocean on floating ice. Then it turns out that she's meant to be the reincarnation of her grandmother Niah who is the source of her nightmares and memory blanks to be the lover of her grandfather WolfStar, then her brother Drago is strung up in a Kangaroo Court by her other brother Caelum and while on the run with Drago, she's raped by WolfStar and Niah wins the fight and Zenith's soul is forced out of her body and no one gives a shit except for StarDrifter (Her other grandfather who she adores) and Faraday. Thanks to Faraday, Zenith is able to reclaim control of her body from Niah, but then the Timekeepers attack Tencendor shortly afterwards.
      • After this, she and StarDrifter fall for one another due to their SunSoar blood (Which is allowed because in Icarii society, only parents, offspring or siblings are forbidden) and despite Zenith's badly wanting to be his lover, she's still dealing with the trauma from being raped and is just unable to adjust to seeing StarDrifter as anything more then her grandfather and eventually ends up spending all her time with WolfStar in an attempt to find closure and be able to accept StarDrifter as a lover and is killed because of it by his insane ex-wife.


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