Chapter: Just One More Day

Information relevant to the 16th chapter of The Chosen

the Election result
result of the Nepheron/Molochite election

This spreadsheet shows a precise analysis of the actual votes cast in the Chamber of the Three Lands during the Election. The votes are broken down into those cast individually and those cast in blocks

The House Suth votes are shown separately as an example of how a single House vote is broken down. In this case, the block vote includes the votes that Suth can cast as He-who-goes-before

The House of the Masks votes are also shown. Ykoriana, as Regent, casts the block vote for her House, which though, unusually, excludes women, does include the votes of children and adolescents

In the end, Nepheron is elected by the tiny margin of 16 votes

q_oOsidian © Ricardo Pinto

This drawing predates the Stone Dance by several years. It was a drawings of Osidian—note the birthmark on his forehead—even before I had really conceived of him. It has a naive style that I quickly moved away from even a couple of years later. However, for all its many flaws, it does capture something of the innocence and optimism that lies beneath the grim surface of the Stone Dance. I am sharing this because I know that there are some of you out there who are interested in this sort of thing

Notice that Osidian is wearing ranga

The symbol hanging over his chest is a personal one from much earlier in my childhood. I called it a ‘tolbtek’. I used it a lot at that time. I’m not sure what it represents, if anything. Looking at it now, I suppose it could be a symbol for the self

the Sunhold
a plan of the Sunhold and the Hall of Wings

The Sunhold is a fortress built within the Halls of Thunder to accommodate He-who-goes-before and his Red Ichorian guardsmen during a divine election. That it is a fortress demonstrates the underlying antagonism that there is between the Great [whom He-who-goes-before leads] and the Imperial Power in whose domain the Sunhold is located

The Sunhold is delved into the eastern edge of the Pillar of Heaven. It connects to the Encampment of the Seraphim by means of three well-defended passages that culminate in double portcullises. Besides the barracks and the suite of chambers for He-who-goes-before and his attendants, the Sunhold also contains the Hall of the Sun in Splendour. It is here that He-who-goes-before holds court. The Hall connects directly to the nave of the Hall of Wings through the Sun-Eyed Door

the Halls of Thunder

The Halls of Thunder are a complex of palace caverns cut high into the rock of the Pillar of Heaven. It is here that the God Emperor, the court and the rest of the House of the Masks retire during the summer months to escape the heat in the crater below—they are the Eyries of the House of the Masks

The predominant aspect of the Halls is the ceremonial axis, running southwest to northeast, corresponding to the route the Rains take from the southern seas across the Guarded Land to Osrakum

Most of the main structures lie along this axis or to either side of it.

Beginning from the Creation Window in the southwest, there is a progression of: the Thronehall, the Stairs of the Approach, the Chamber of the Three Lands (where the Election of a God-Emperor is conducted), the Encampment of the Seraphim and culminating in the Sunhold and the Amber Window that lets light in from the northeast.

original design for the Halls of Thunder

The first diagram shows my initial conception for the Halls of Thunder, and includes all the structures listed above. Note the passage connecting the gallery around the Chamber of the Three Lands to the head of the Rainbow Stair to the northwest, which is how Carnelian first enters the Halls. Shown also are the horseshoe of chambers cut into the whole of the northeast end of the Pillar of Heaven. The small diagram in the lower lefthand side shows the door to the Sunhold

revised plan for the Halls of Thunder

The second diagram was a necessary refinement of the scheme that was forced on me once I calculated how large the Encampment of the Seraphim had to be to accommodate the Chosen. Additionally, I had, by then, a much better understanding of how the northeastern end of the Encampment interfaces with the Sunhold in the east, with access to the chambers used by Carnelian and the rest of the Chosen, and that now runs only along the northern face of the Pillar of Heaven

Note also the more precise articulation of the Chamber of the Three Lands with its moat and the bridges that cross it. Also the extra stairs off the second landing of the Stairs of the Approach, leading on the southeast to the chambers used by the House of the Masks (including the Dreamchamber), and in the northwest to those used by the Wise

ancient halls
plan of the ancient Halls of Thunder

Ancient halls underlie the Halls of Thunder that once performed the same role as the new halls above, that include the addition of the Encampment of the Seraphim (that is shown superimposed on the plan and labelled “Hall of Wings”), the Chamber of the Three Lands etc. It is these halls that Carnelian reaches by descending from the Hall of the Sun in Splendour in the Sunhold, so encountering the Moon-Eyed Door

Also shown is the Forbidden House of the House of the Masks that is separated from the rest of the Pillar of Heaven by a narrow ravine, the Windmoat, and that gives access to the secret way, the Quyan Stair.

the Yden
the Isle’s lagoons and the Yden

The Yden is the region lying within the Ydenrim—the lip of a submerged, ancient crater. This lip rises some little way above the level of the lake

Much of the Yden is land that is the result of the subsided ash cone of the volcano, of which the Pillar of Heaven is the only remains—that volcano’s main vent solidified into basalt. The rest of the Yden consists of shallow lagoons whose level the Ydenrim raises above that of the surrounding lake

the Yden lying within the Ydenrim

The diagram shows the Labyrinth, built on the higher ground lying between the Pillar of Heaven and the Plain of Thrones. Around the base of the Pillar are the Forbidden Garden with its terraces. Dotted lines show height contours. Note the wide contour to the northwest (this is clearer on the expanded diagram) that shows the wetlands that slip away into the lagoons

Also shown is the route taken by Carnelian and Osidian on their first visit to the Yden: from the Quyan Stair, through the Forbidden Garden and down towards the lagoons