I’ve been thinking a lot about what some of the themes in MU4 might be, and I think one of the most important is about personal connections; the ones we make, the ones we destroy, the ones we wish we had and the ones we protect with everything we have.

I posted a rough version of Chapter 1 some months back, in which a young woman named Eika is dropped off in a deserted town and forced to undergo a solo trial to prove her worth as part of the Order of the Blessed Ones. Her story of connection is about the utter lack of it in her failure to live up to her family’s and community’s expectations. In Chapter 2 we’ll see the connection between two new Alien Relations Unit officers, Lizzie Kapranos and Ruu-Sseikassi Tiiegasi, who will have a somewhat unconventional connection with each other that’s different than Alec Poe and Caren Johnson’s in the previous books. And later on we’ll see an arc about Ampryss and Shirai, and how their connections to their original fates have changed because of the Season of the Ninth Embodiment.

I’ve chosen ‘personal connections’ to be one of the backbones of MU4 (and possibly other related stories) partly because of what Denni Johnson did near the end of The Balance of Light: she pretty much broke all the rules and expectations and sent fate off in uncharted directions. Every detail, every question and every choice is related to what connections the characters make, because that is the only anchor with each other that they truly have.

Of course, this isn’t about strict maintenance of those connections…like I said, it’s also about how they can be destroyed, and why.

But then I’d be giving away too much if I kept going, heh.