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More Tam Lin notes
Bar Harbor
alexx_kay
After the performance, which climaxes with my character descending to Hell, kestrell's reaction was priceless. "Am I going to have to go get a bloody piece of bread and feed it to the bloody dog to get you back? Because I *will* be grumpy about it. Don't worry, though; *I* won't look back."

The following day, there was some brief discussion of the play in the midst of a panel on "Stealing Folklore". One of the audience members brought it up, and said that she immediately was prompted to wonder about a sequel. What happens to Thomas? None of the women are still in love with him, and he's probably just going to mope around in the woods, missing Faerie. The panelists observed that it was interesting that, in this version, Janet explicitly is not in love with Thomas; she cares far more about her ownership of the woods, which puts her in a sort of parallel with the Fairy Queen.

The panel then got distracted onto other topics, but there are further issues. What happens to Janet? Her problems are left quite unresolved. She is still six months pregnant, and under the legal authority of a very angry uncle. There *is* an obvious solution, but it's not very satisfactory. She can escape from her uncle's household, by marrying Thomas. Which seems unlikely to be a happy marriage, as there is explicitly no love between them. This recapitulates some of the action of the ballad on an entirely different level: to save what she wants to save (her child, her property ownership), Janet must tightly hold something that causes her pain (an emotionally barren marriage).

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A ]loveless[ marriage with a good friend could be better than marriage to a stranger picked for profit, which is what her uncle planned. ("Ownership" is a bit narrow; one thing we emphasized when rehearsing Janet was that the woods were legally hers, but also her responsibility and joy.) Also, it's hard to tell how that relationship would evolve -- they've both made their imagined adventures of childhood into reality, which can be a bonding experience. I'd be interested to know what Jo and especially Lois would say -- one from any structure she may have imagined but not put in words, the other from what kind of open relationship could work in Barrayar during the Isolation.

As for Thomas: our reading was that he was shocked out of his enchantment with Faerie, at least in the short term. In the longer term, who knows? Humans are adaptable -- Thomas the Rhymer is said to have led an engaged life before being returned to Faerie from his deathbed; or this Thomas could have spent all his time moping (as in Vance's "Green Magic", or Gulliver after his 4th voyage), leaving Janet more room.

They could just tear each other apart -- that also happens on Barrayar; but it's not clear they would have, absent the outside pressures that affected Aral's first marriage.

/CHip

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