So. Can we have a plot now?
Well, Maeve runs out of the room in tears, while her bodyguards all stand around with a "huh?" look on their faces. Meanwhile Merry is standing frozen because "She tasted like sunshine."
Gee, why would Maeve be so upset? Maybe it's because she's dropped her glamour for the first time in forty plus years? Maybe it's because having another Fairy around reminds Maeve about her life in the Seelie court? Maybe it's because--
I felt my eyes widen. “You mean she’s attracted to me.” I shook my head before he could say anything. “She’s attracted to the first sidhe she’s touched in a hundred years.”Yeah. Because it all has to be about sex with Merry. Even though the text then goes out of its way to say "Maeve is not a Lesbian." Thanks. I needed to know this.
Then they all discuss how Maeve dropping her glamour basically rang every bell in the neighborhood. Then they all discuss how Maeve was worshiped long after the rest of them were forgotten--and I've already discussed the stupidity of reducing a fucking deity to erotica's supporting cast, so we're not going to talk about it again--and how that's given her more power. And then somebody points out the obvious: That Maeve being a movie star basically equals more worship than she would have gotten even back in the day.
And this is a big deal in the story's universe, because the Fae are only in the states as long as nobody worships them. In the last book, Queen Crazy had to beg Merry not to reveal that Prince Cel had worshipers of his own. This could, in fact, get the Fae thrown out if it were revealed that movie-star worship equals god/goddess worship.
Will this ever get addressed? No. I mean...LKH can either use this little bit of worldbuilding as a launchpad for a truly epic plot of epic proportions...or she can have her self-insert screw a major god of the dead Celtic religion she studied up on when she jumped faiths.
This is almost as bad as when Anne Rice wrote those first person books from Jesus's perspective.
Anyway, Maeve asks everybody to go out to the pool. Everybody's fine with it except Kitto, who freaks out because he has severe agoraphobia. He lived his whole life in caves and dark tunnels. Merry doesn't care. The guy can't handle a big white room and she's going to make him go outside. She'll allow him to go to the van if he gets overwhelmed, but she's decided he needs to work on his fears.
You know, usually exposure therapy occurs under highly controlled conditions, under a counselor's supervision. But I'm absolutely sure a member of a race where rudeness is punishable by death is perfect to supervise a traumatized individual's exposure to something that scares the shit out of them. And this--a highly charged negotiation with a literal goddess--is the perfect time to make Kitto face his fears.
And then Rhys decides to make everybody skip down the hallway singing "We're off to see the wizard".
That's how the chapter ends. I did not make that up.
Plot is still nonexistent.