Thursday, April 12, 2018

Daemons Discuss - Podcast: Take 36! | Chapter Discussion about the All Souls Trilogy; Chapter 12 of Shadow of Night

Yes, we did that. We named the episode this. To quote a Daemon while recording "Oh, Lord!"

Take 36 - The One With the "D"

Description: Here it is folks, the moment we've been waiting for! Finally, the chance to actually title an episode this, after some off-handed remarks in another episode! In all seriousness, this is the one with family planning, the one with the temple, the one with the feasts, the one with La Robe, the one with financial independence, the one with wedding, and the one where Matthew and Diana become one. The "D" is for Daemons, you dirty ditch-dwellers! 😜

SPOILER ALERT! We (The Daemons) approach this podcast with an assumption that the listener has read The All Souls Trilogy, including A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night, and The Book of Life. If you haven't, and you don't mind, we certainly don't mind!  😊  Let's do this. *Note - this podcast is labeled 'explicit'

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1. Show notes:

For newcomers to the series:- We'll start with the basics: The books in discussion are A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night and The Book of Life.  Together they make The All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness.
- Our Daemon Guides to the All Souls Trilogy are available for download: ADOW, SON, TBOL

Deb's newsletter - The Blast; subscribe on her website
- If you'd like a ready-reference from the author herself, be sure to download the All Souls Real-Time Reading companion (free e-book at online booksellers via Penguin and Headline books).
- Deborah Harkness usually conducts a real-time reading on her Facebook Page (starting in September), and shares her posts across social media. Check out her website for all of her social media links, and of course all that she has to offer her readers! Be sure to sign up for her newsletter while you are there!
- To see what's available on the web as far as the All Souls universe fandom, check our links page.

In this episode:
* (00:47) - This podcast is brought to you by our Patrons! To become a patron all you need to do is visit us at and become a member. See what level tier you'd like to join us! All tier levels will receive access to our exclusive Daemons Discuss! The Aftershow podcast.

* (01:15) - Discusser emails! Thank you Kit, NE Angela, Stephen & Sara!

* (06:04) - This chapter review is brought to you by Shelli Carter; Thank you, Shelli!


This picture is just to set the mood for you . . . you're welcome! 😏
 * (07:04) - At Sept-Tours in front of the fire in the Library
  • Leggings! Matthew hooked a girl up with some comfy clothing to lounge around in. We appreciate it! Matthew’s wedding gift: one of his shirts, which extended to my knees, and a pair of his old hose. Each leg had been ripped along the top inner seam, and then Matthew had stitched the two legs together into something vaguely approximating leggings—minus the waistband and the spandex. 
  • Nothing too pagan . . . and the word "surely" when it comes to Philippe. “Surely the priest won’t allow Philippe to do anything overtly pagan. The actual ceremony will have to be Catholic.”“The family never puts ‘surely’ and ‘Philippe’ in the same sentence. It always ends badly.” Matthew planted a kiss on my hip. 
  • Hillybilly incest sh*t? No! We are rather proud of our maturity here. Jean theorizes that Philippe wants control of the whole party! “[...] Philippe has managed to appoint himself not only the father of the groom, but the father of the bride.” 
  • Diana isn't into the fuss . . . we discuss Sarah and Emily's handfasting. Sarah and Em hadn’t had a formal ceremony. Instead an elder in the Madison coven performed a handfasting. Looking back, it reminded me of the vows Matthew and I had exchanged before we timewalked: simple, intimate, and quickly over. 
  • No such thing as an empty ritual . . . “It’s just an empty ritual.”“There’s no such thing.” Matthew frowned. “If you can’t bear it, you must say so.” Angela brings up the fact that in Catholicism, marriage is a sacrament.
  • Tonight is just a feast, modified to exclude milk, meat, or cheese. There were dozens of dishes: a soup made with chickpeas, grilled eel, a delicious puree of lentils, salt cod in garlic sauce, and an entire fish that swam through a gelatinous sea of aspic, with sprigs of lavender and rosemary impersonating water plants. Philippe explained that the menu had been the subject of heated negotiations between Chef and the village priest. After the exchange of several embassies, the two had finally agreed that tonight’s meal would strictly adhere to the Friday dietary prohibitions against meat, milk, and cheese, while tomorrow’s banquet would be a no-holds-barred extravaganza. 
  • Diana's side of the aisle would be rather sparse, if the ceremony were held in present day. She'd only invite Sarah, Em, Chris and the chair of her dept. at Yale. We still contend that this does not indicate that Chris was her BFF like we see in the next book. 😶 We're sticking to our RETCON theory. Chris in The Book of Life (in our opinion), is a victim an example of it.
  • Matthew is NOT a loner . . . “[...]I’m known for being a loner. I used to think you were a loner, too.”“Me?” Matthew laughed. “Except on television or in the movies, vampires are seldom alone. We prefer the company of others. Even witches will do, in a pinch.” He kissed me to prove it.
  • The family planning talk! We circle the wagons here waiting to see what Matthew actually wants and how he feels about actually having kids. “No matter what Marcus and Miriam said back in New York, there is no evidence whatsoever that you and I can have children. Even herbal contraceptives like these can have unsafe side effects,” Matthew said, coolly clinical.“Let’s say, for argument’s sake, one of your scientific tests revealed we could have children. Would you want me to take the tea then?”
  • The medieval contraception options: “Abstinence. Withdrawal. And there are condoms, though they’re not reliable either. Especially not the kind available to us in this day and age.” Matthew was right. Sixteenth-century condoms were made from linen, leather, or animal intestines. (Re: animal intestines? Um....EWWW!)
  • Matthew's circular logic: “If—if—we could conceive a child together, it would be a miracle, and therefore no form of contraception would be effective.” ...Wait, Matthew, wha?!
  • The Feast of Immaculate Conception - the day they are actually married.
  • Matthew wants her to put the herbs back in the stillroom. Passing on blood rage, and Matthew's hope for the future is discussed here. “If we could conceive, and if this tea were effective, I’d still want you to leave the herbs in the stillroom.” [...] “When I study patterns of extinction and see the evidence in the laboratory that we are dying out, the future seems hopeless. But if I detect a single chromosomal shift, or the discovery of an unexpected descendant when I thought a bloodline had died out, the sense of inevitable destruction lifts. I feel the same way now.” Usually I had problems when Matthew adopted a position of scientific objectivity, but not this time.
  •  Jean points out Diana's growth as far realizing her place in this world. “When I drove Philippe’s dagger into Champier, all I could think of was that he was going to take my thoughts and memories and I wouldn’t be the same person when I returned to our modern lives. But even if we were to go back right this minute, we would already be different people. All the places we’ve gone, the people I’ve met, the secrets we’ve shared—I’m no longer the same Diana Bishop, and you aren’t the same Matthew Clairmont. A baby would change us even more.”
  • Valerie thinks Matthew is proceeding with caution. Diana is thinking about fate.
  • Philippe overhears and *poof* shows up to interject his wisdom into the possibility of their conceiving. He quotes Heraclitus (or did Heraclitus quote HIM? 😎). “Never is a long time, Matthew, as I told you. As for the impossible, I have walked this earth longer than man’s memories and have seen things that later generations discounted as myth. Once there were creatures who swam like fish in the sea and others who wielded lightning bolts instead of spears. They are gone now, replaced with something new. ‘Change is the only reliable thing in the world.’”
  • Ysabeau?! At home mending her men's clothing by sewing?! HA! “Who knew the de Clermont men could thread a needle, never mind stitch a straight seam?”Philippe’s eyebrows rose. “Did you think Ysabeau mended our torn garments when we came home from battle?”The idea of Ysabeau sewing quietly while she waited for her men to return made me giggle. “Hardly.”

A white buck. Photo from Ithaca Journal
 * (23:43) - At the temple; the offering to Artemis
  • Jean felt Deb's writing was quite evocative right here. She also points out the hoof prints on the ground as they relate to characters we know . . . hmmmmmmmmm! Philippe swung down from his horse and motioned for me to do the same. Once I dismounted, he took me by the elbow and guided me through two of the strange lumps and into a smooth expanse of snow-covered ground. All that marred the pristine surface were the tracks of wildlife—the heart-shaped outline of a deer’s hoof, the five-clawed marks of bear, the combination of triangular and oval pads belonging to a wolf.
  • Philippe's explanation of the place. "A temple dedicated to Diana stood here once, overlooking the woods and valleys where the stags liked to run. Those who revered the goddess planted sacred cypress trees to grow alongside the native oak and alder.” Philippe pointed to the thin columns of green that stood guard around the area. “I wanted to bring you here because when I was a child, far away and before I became a manjasang, brides would go to a temple like this before their wedding and make a sacrifice to the goddess. We called her Artemis then.”
  • Philippe's invocation, and Jean is the hero that saves the day! She was comfortable experimenting with the Greek. “Artemis Agroterê, renowned huntress, Alcides Leontothymos beseeches you to hold this child Diana in your hand. Artemis Lykeiê, lady of the wolves, protect her in every way. Artemis Patrôia, goddess of my ancestors, bless her with children so that my lineage continues.”Philippe’s lineage. I was part of it now, by marriage as well as the giving of his blood.“Artemis Phôsphoros, bring the light of your wisdom when she is in darkness. Artemis Upis, watch over your namesake during her journey in this world.”
  • Valerie points out that in Neopagan religions different aspects of the goddess are presented, just like with the Greek and Roman Gods/Goddesses.
  • We talk about the surge: and we think this may have stamped all of the parallel timelines. A surge of power washed through the ground underneath my feet. The goddess was here. For a moment I could imagine the temple as it once was—pale, gleaming, whole. I stole a glance at Philippe. With a bear pelt draped over his shoulders, he, too, looked like the savage remainder of a lost world. And he was waiting for something.
  • The white buck! Angela is seeing white bucks everywhere! A white buck with curved antlers picked its way out of the cypress and stood, breath steaming from its nostrils. With quiet steps the buck picked his way over to me. His huge brown eyes were challenging, and he was close enough for me to see the sharp edges on his horns. The buck looked haughtily at Philippe and bellowed, one beast’s greeting to another.

Maybe the dish looked a little bit like this? Maybe it was more submerged? We don't know! 😖 Recipe HERE
* (33:07) - The banquet (Philippe loves a party!)
  • We discuss Diana's gown and wonder if it's to match with the season, or if there was a separate significance. The dark green fabric reminded me of the cypress by the temple now, rather than the holly that decorated the château for Advent. And the silver oak leaves embroidered on the bodice caught the light from the candles as the buck’s antlers had caught the rays of the setting sun.
  • You are beautiful, mon coeur! Wait a darn minute, Matthew ... you are just now noticing?! “Jesu,” he said, stunned. “You are beautiful, mon coeur.” Matthew took my hands and lifted my arms to see the full effect.
  • Diana won't be taking the damn tea (yay!👏) “I sent Catrine to the stillroom to put away Marthe’s herbs.” It was a far bigger step into the unknown than the one that I’d taken in Sarah’s hop barn to bring us here. “You’re sure?” “I’m sure,” I said, remembering Philippe’s words at the temple.
  • We discuss Diana's insecurities that we may not have paid attention to previously. Our entry into the hall was greeted with whispers and sidelong glances. The changes in my appearance had been noted, and the nods told me that at last I looked like someone who was fit to marry milord.
  • The actual feast. There were dozens of dishes: a soup made with chickpeas, grilled eel, a delicious puree of lentils, salt cod in garlic sauce, and an entire fish that swam through a gelatinous sea of aspic, with sprigs of lavender and rosemary impersonating water plants.
  • We start discussing aspic, and somehow we wound up into a convo about Jello shots. THE DITCH! We are taking a tour of it here.
  • Philippe covers Diana's ears. We talk about how fatherly this was. [...] their commentary was downright ribald and Matthew’s responses were just as barbed. Happily, most of the insults and advice were delivered in languages I didn’t fully understand, but Philippe clapped his hands over my ears occasionally anyway.
  • Diana wishes Matthew can see himself like she does. We all do. “Just look at him,” Matthew marveled, taking my hand. “How does Philippe manage to make every one of them feel that they’re the most important guest in the room?” “You tell me,” I said with a laugh. When Matthew looked confused, I shook my head. “Matthew, you are exactly the same. All you need do to take charge of a roomful of people is to enter it.
  • The kithera and Peleus, and Thetis, and Achille's. The room was mesmerized by Philippe’s otherworldly bass “There Peleus first saw Thetis, daughter of Nereus, the god of the sea who told no lies and saw the future. From her father Thetis had the gift of prophecy and could twist her shape from moving water to living fire to the very air itself. Though Thetis was beautiful, no one would take her for a wife, for an oracle foretold that her son would be more powerful than his father [...]"
  • The Bride and Groom separate for the evening.  Matthew and I rose. I smoothed down my skirts, my attention fixed resolutely on his doublet. The stitches on it were very fine, I noticed, tiny and regular. Gentle fingers lifted my chin, and I was lost instead in the play of smooth curves and sharp angles that made up Matthew’s face. All sense of performance disappeared as we contemplated each other. We stood in the midst of the hall and the wedding guests, our kiss a spell that carried us to an intimate world of our own
Deborah Harkness' inspiration for La Robe
* (44:19) - Preparing to get married, Cinderella-style; the mice Valerie was referring to
  • The precession that is led into her room to prepare her to be dressed: A procession of women with pitchers came to my chamber, chattering like magpies and filling an enormous copper tub that I suspected was normally used to make wine or cider. But the water was piping hot and the copper vessel retained the glorious warmth, so I wasn’t inclined to quibble.
  • Her possessions . . . The women left me to soak, and I noticed that my few belongings— books, the notes I’d taken on alchemy and Occitan phrases—had disappeared. So, too, had the long, low chest that stored my clothes. When I asked Catrine, she explained that everything had been moved to milord’s chambers on the other side of the château.I was no longer Philippe’s putative daughter, but Matthew’s wife. My property had been relocated accordingly.
  • Philippe's gifts! “I came to give you your wedding gifts.” Philippe held out his hand, and Alain placed a large velvet bag in his palm. “There was no time to have something made, I’m afraid. These are family pieces.”
  • Diana has had a very successful week. When I’d arrived in France, I was entirely dependent on Matthew. In little more than a week, I had learned how to conduct myself, converse, manage a household, and distill spirit of wine. I now had my own property, and Philippe de Clermont had claimed me publicly as his daughter.
  • Angela wonders what Philippe said to Walter about this day. “The women in this family manage their own finances. Ysabeau insists upon it. All of the coins in here are English or French. They do not hold their value as well as Venetian ducats, but they will raise fewer questions when you spend them. If you need more, you have only to ask Walter or another member of the brotherhood.”

Eglise de Saint Lucien (we have no actual inspirational notes, this is just a church in Saint Lucien!)
* (47:00) - The bells begin to ring.
  • The wedding. We loved this passage: I faltered as we came to the church. The entire village had assembled outside its doors, along with the priest. I searched for Matthew and found him standing at the top of the short flight of stairs. Through the transparent veil, I could feel his regard. Like sun and moon, we were unconcerned at this moment with time, distance, and difference. All that mattered was our position relative to each other.
  • The reception. What happened afterward was a blur. There were torches and a long walk up the hill surrounded by well-wishers. Chef’s feast was already laid out, and people tucked into it with enthusiasm. Matthew and I sat alone at the family table, while Philippe strolled about serving wine and making sure the children got their fair share of spit-roasted hare and cheese fritters. Occasionally he cast a proud look in our direction, as if we’d slain dragons that afternoon. 
  • Take your wife to bed. “Take your wife to bed and finish this,” Philippe murmured. “But the guests . . .” Matthew protested. “Take your wife to bed, my son,” Philippe repeated. “Steal away now, before the others decide to accompany you upstairs and make sure you do your duty. Leave everything to me.” He turned, kissing me formally on both cheeks before murmuring something in Greek and sending us to Matthew’s tower.

We've always imagined this bedroom to be Matthew's in Sept-Tours, and it turns out to be the bedroom for the chateau that is the model for Les Revenants - Château de Montbrun
* (48:21) - Doing the Deed and the D!
  • Undressing; Jean thinks this was wonderful foreplay. Valerie doesn't think she'd have the patience. AT. ALL.
  • Diana trying to rescue her gown! “There it is,” he murmured, hooking his index fingers around the edges and giving a decided yank. One sleeve, then the other, slid down each arm and onto the floor. Matthew seemed entirely unconcerned, but it was my wedding gown and not easily replaced. “My gown,” I said, squirming in his arms. 
  • Jean provides some stage direction here. A growl is required.
  • The heart vein - the foreshadowing. [...] my husband was focused on the place where my nearly transparent high-necked smock disappeared into the heavy reinforced fabric of the corset. He pressed his lips against the swell. Bowing his head in a reverential pose, he took in a jagged breath. 
  • The D and deed are done! We end the chapter with this: “Let me love you forever,” Matthew murmured against my damp forehead, his lips trailing a cold path across my brow as we lay twined together. “I will,” I promised once more, tucking my body even closer against him.
* (53:00) Housekeeping! Brought to you by Melanie Nelson! Thank you, Terry for your wonderful review. Thank you, Michelle for sharing your story and providing your insight on chapter 11. Then we got a voice mail from Camille! Thank you Camille!

* (56:16) Save It For the Show - brought to you by Dora Flores-Ryan! Topic: The handling of S.E.X. in the All Souls Trilogy. We talk about how generally this isn't talked about in the fandom. We only just realized how many people were willing to share their viewpoints after we started the podcast.

* (1:03:55)  Promo break – scroll down, or click here to get a hold of us and/or become a Discusser -- information on joining our Facebook group also located on that page. Those of you with US numbers can text ADOW to 444999 to become a Discusser.

* (1:05:00) - Last thoughts! Jean remains sad, because we are leaving France soon. Angela soothes her by mentioning that Prague is coming. Angela's last thought is that the mini tour is coming and she doesn't have a stop near her, so she'll live vicariously through Jean and Valerie. Val does an advertising dump: Visit and "like" our Facebook page, Follow us on Tumblr (Tumblr-only giveaway coming as soon as we hit 782 followers), the new text option for becoming a Discusser, and ALL SOULS CON! Also consider becoming a patron!

All Souls Con 2018

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  • * NOTE: Please keep in mind that this group is only a supplement to our podcast. We recommend that you join only if you truly enjoy the podcast and want to discuss things further. Listening just to gain entry will be a waste of our time, and frankly yours! The screening process has been intensified to keep membership intimate, and to try to keep out folks who don’t have the best intentions for the group and its dynamic. It's an imperfect process, but we are determined to keep it a healthy place for speculation and more detailed discussion for all members, including us. When we opened the group, we decided to require listener-only membership because podcasting is a very personal medium. People who listen tend to know how we are and think. Those who like what we have to say (and don't find us too abrasive/foul-mouthed/opinionated 😈), will most likely enjoy the group to its fullest, and utilize it as a sounding board with other like-minded members who have the ability to peacefully discuss divergent or opposing ideas. We don't have time to worry about mal-intent, because it breeds drama and discourse. If we're not comfortable, then the rest of the members won't be comfortable. None of this is negotiable. It's simply how it is. This is why the Facebook group is not public and we don't advertise it on Deb's website, social media, or other venues.

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Credits/Copyright Information 
* Intro music: "Ghost Dance" (edited down to second chorus) by Kevin Macleod, licensed for use by Creative Commons.
* News intro: by AwesomeMusicVideos21; provided for fair-use/royalty-free.
*  Outro music: Rimsky-Korsakov - "Scheherazade Symphonic Suite for Orchestra Op.35 - IV. Allegro molto," Public
* "Save it for the Show" segment voiceover by Devyn Grendell  
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* The Daemons Discuss podcast is hosted and produced by the owners (Angela, Jean and Valerie) of Daemons Domain and can also be found by entering the url in your browser, (listed on the various podcast syndicates like iTunes, Stitcher, etc.) which will redirect you back to the parent site, Daemons Domain.
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* Our episode titles are a loving tribute to the show "Friends" just 'cause we love Friends and - let's face it - it's easier! Here's how one of the show creators explains their reasoning:
Jeff Greenstein: "When Marta & David & Jeff & I did 'Dream On', we used to spend a lot of time thinking about titles, because they were on-screen at the top of each episode. On "Friends", we decided that was a waste of time. We figured, why not name each episode after the thing that people will ostensibly be talking about around the water-cooler the next day?"
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