I'd say "so what" but even if you ignore the long hair=beauty motif in the Fairy, this is actually a pretty effective threat. Hair cutting is humiliating and irritating, but it also means she can cut off something else. Cooperate now, or you lose your nose.
But of course, it's not played like that in the book. Nope. Hair cutting is the most horrible of horrible things you can do to the Fae.
Adair’s body was as empty of reaction to my approach as his eyes. He was lucky I was not my aunt, for she sometimes took lack of response on an involuntary level as a personal insult.
Translation: he didn't get a boner, like the other guy did.
Also: This is officially the lair of the bloody psychopaths.
And every single time we go back to Adair, we are reminded that he's limp. He does not have an erection. He's "limpbodied" to quote the book. This is the most important thing about this character: He doesn't have an erection when he looks at Merry.
So the guards bar their way and insist...something. It isn't very clear. People named Hawthorne and Ivy are going to test themselves against the ring--and screw her rather promptly--and if the ring doesn't know them, then one of these two are supposed to take the other guy's place. Only Hawthorne and Ivy aren't here and the guards aren't letting them through the door. So I have no idea what the fuck is going on.
So Merry pushes her way forward--it takes for. fucking. ever--and she and Adair start making out because now he wants to? I think? And they do? And then they magically teleport to somewhere with lots of dead plants, even though the Queen's doors and the rest of the guards are still there?
Seriously. WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON I AM GETTING WHIPLASH WHAT THE HELL
I held the dirty cup in my two hands, for it had no handle, and my hands were too small to hold it comfortably one-handed. I held it toward the place in the rock where the water had once bubbled forth. I knew exactly where the water should have flowed from. I knew it even though I had never seen it. I touched the cup to the rock, just below the opening.
Nothing annoys me more than when LKH drags out the biblical imagry. It's so. fucking. obvious when she does it. And I know there are motifs common to all religions, but as I've said about nine times this review, she keeps on bringing up the attitudes and gender issues of fundamentalist Christians, so it's pretty obvious that she may have jettisoned public Christianity, she's still got the soul of Fred Phelps (or Doug Phillips. Google it.)
But this particular image has kind of pointed out why I HATE the goddess-moves-through-Merry shit LKH is pulling here. See, the water-from-the-rock story in the Bible is when Moses is about to lead the Hebrews into the Promised Land. He prays, hits the rock, and water comes out. Cool, right? Except he was just supposed to talk to it, not hit it. Hitting it made it look like the water came from his effort, not God's...and God does not like it when you take His credit (or, for that matter, screw with his stuff). Moses did not get to go to the Promised Land because he took God's credit for the water episode.
Which brings me to my point: Why would a Goddess only act through Merry? Why would ANY true Deity choose just one vessel/mouthpiece? They're not in awe of the Goddess in these episodes. They're in awe of Merry. Why would the Goddess set things up so that Merry gets most of the credit here?
...because LKH doesn't know how to write something that DOESN'T glorify her main characters. Gotcha.
I sent the power on my fingers into that small dark opening, spread it on the crack like invisible jam, so thick, so rich.
I knew in that instant that it had been meant for another more real liquid to be spread upon it. But this would do; this, too, was part of Adair’s essence. Part of his power, his maleness. Male energy to touch the opening in the rock, like the opening of a woman. Male and female to bring forth life.
One: Yep. Straight sex, folks. It's magic.
Two: You honestly expect me to believe that the Lair of Bloody Psychopaths never bothered with blood sacrifice on one of their magic fountains? That they saw their realm dying and went "Oh, well. We ought to sacrifice the white stag during the next solstice but I really can't be bothered"? You want me to believe that THESE PEOPLE wouldn't have tried this already? That MERRY is the only person to try waking these things up?
And of course the water comes out (While Adair is wailing about how she tricked him) and the old nasty cup Merry was holding becomes a beautiful chalice made of wood and all I can think at this point is
Merry then realizes that the cup is meant for the Queen, and the chapter ends with them all wondering if they could get Andais to drink it.