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Empathy & Truth - the Rebels in tales of the black company

Started by droqen, November 12, 2021, 11:10:51 PM

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Not like, cry cry sad, but I'm a few pages from the end of The Silver Spike and the events are terribly sad; the motivations of each group are so clear and at odds and it's tragic. Darling, the leader of the Rebels, feels almost sorry for these two guys who we've been following the whole book, these two of four thieves who serve as book-long protagonists, who've just stabbed her in the side as well as two of her close allies, who've unleashed a terrible evil on the world, whose actions have directly and indirectly lead to death and suffering at every scale. Self-preservation.

Quote from: One of the Rebels[Darling] felt almost sorry for those two [thieves].

She overdid the empathy sometimes. I don't have any for guys who stick knives in me.

Quote from: One of the thievesI think if I had my druthers I'd rather the Rebels got the damned thing. The imperials are nasty enough without it.
I guess for guys like us it don't matter who's running things anyway. Whoever it is they're going to try to stick it to us.

The dramatic irony is heartbreaking. As reader I know who ought to trust who, and I know that it exists. But we don't get dramatic irony in real life... we're always trapped inside it, incapable of seeing the whole truth.

How can we have empathy and trust that others have it?


It takes a leap of faith to hold an empathetic, trusting worldview, and more such leaps to maintain one. Anyone, at any time, can take advantage of trust and empathy: if someone is willing to give, someone else can benefit by taking and not giving back.

I think that's the fundamental engine which drives the often-revisited traditional balance between good and evil.

Good gives, and evil takes.


Good chooses to give, perhaps knowing that at any time it can be taken advantage of.

Evil chooses to take, perhaps knowing that it might come at the expense of those who give freely.