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  • Odo

    Love the fact that, even forewarned, our heroes are vulnerable. It is in the nature of the Deadlies to be seductive.

    • JWLM

      Yes indeed. I also love the fact that Sid gets himself out of the trap so very quickly.

      So, who takes over here? Voss or Wolfe?

      And what sin is Wolfe vulnerable to, I wonder?

      • Heather

        Lust maybe? He’s certainly a bit of a flirt.

      • Amy

        Wolfe interrupted a high-stakes search for Voss in order to dance with Florrie. I’d put money on Lust getting to him.

        • Sanjay Merchant

          Yup. The only other thing I can think of would be Pride (in his musicianship) and even that’s a stretch, given that Voss scouldn’t goad him into a fiddle contest. (In a bit of a hurry to find the exact quote, but Stolen-Ability Enhanced Voss challenges him to a fiddle contest, and Wolfe says “Eh, I doubt I could outdo you, but let’s jam!”) So, if Envy couldn’t exploit that, I doubt Pride could, either.

          • non_canon

            I think you have the right of it in your comment lower on about it being more of a flaw the bad guys can exploit rather than anything else. Ben and Verity have short tempers but they aren’t particularly bloodthirsty or full of rage, and while Sidney has expressed that he doesn’t think he has what it takes to be a stage performer he normally would never be okay with seeing someone suffer like these performers seem to be. Which opens up the field quite a bit on who can and can’t be affected.

            I’ve also been wondering if it has to be pride of something about the person themselves or can be about pride in something someone else has. Like, maybe it could goad Verity and Sidney into an argument over if she or Harry is the better adventurer. Although now I’m getting an image of Ben joining that argument in defense of Verity and it’s an….oddly sweet image all around.

        • Nightsbridge

          I mean, maybe? But I don’t see him being gotten any more than Wrath got Ben and Variety.

    • Stephen E Wilson Jr.

      I think it’s more that the deadlies are normal feelings, even worthwhile feelings to have at times, its when they grow to strong that they become deadly. Envy is close kin to admiration & can drive self-improvement when envy at another drives you to better yourself. Nobody can be free of the deadlies because without them life would be dull.

      • LA Julian

        Another theory is that vices are virtues ‘gone wrong’ – not necessarily too intense, but the dark mirrors of good traits, twisted in some way that makes them destructive.

        • Heylir

          Oh, I remember something I read a long ago:

          “And from out the ashes rose up seven other shapes; the first said: “Pride was I named; I am called Noble Spirit.” The others spake in the same fashion, and Ulenspiegel and Nele saw from Avarice come forth Economy; from Anger, Vivacity; from Gluttony, Appetite; from Envy, Emulation; and from Idleness, the Reverie of poets and sages. And Lust upon her goat was transformed to a beautiful woman whose name was Love”.

          • JWLM

            _The Legend of Till Eugenspiegel_. Well played, sir, well played

          • Maria Gerasimova

            Тиль Уленшпигель :)

        • Elliot Schmidt

          A chart I found some time ago speculates that vice and ‘virtue’ are just aspects of a spectrum and while one extreme is bad, so is the other. The true nobility is found somewhere in the middle

    • Ocean Burning.

      Kate is doing a really good job as author by reminding us that the Deadlies aren’t called Deadly because they’re predictable and easy to beat. Several pages ago someone referred to Lust as “versatile”; in fact, all the Deadlies are versatile. I bet most people are at least somewhat susceptible to almost all the Deadlies, given the right situation and the right material for them to be tempted with. Remember, even Wolfe, who is so calm that he was the obvious choice to defeat Wrath both times, is capable of getting (okay, slightly) angry in certain situations (Chapter 2, page 51).

      • Sarah Hardister

        Wow, thanks for pointing me to that. I’d completely forgotten and just assumed he’s never been mad. Kind of funny to see him slam a door like that.

    • Nonesuch

      The deadly sins are, after all, natural urges that get blown out of proportion and warped out of all sanity and notions of preservation.
      The potential for them is in all of us….

  • Eve

    Awww Sid. (I gotta admit I wasn’t picturing envy to be the one to get him)

    • BaronHaynes

      I imagined it appealing to Ben, considering his insecurity about Sid’s natural skill at magic. Which may still be coming, but this was an interesting surprise.

      • Heylir

        And it is Ben whom Envy said “It worked a treat on him, he was fun!” about, after Mr. Voss’ Ghostbusters appeared on the scene.

        • non_canon

          Context is very important here, I think. In those situations it was about something Ben wanted, whereas in this scenario Envy is specifically eliciting envy about something Sid wants.

          Envy has always proven ready to adapt, though, so it’ll be interesting to see what it does now that it’s aware of the group coming to stop it.

        • I can’t imagine why Mr Thackerey would be envious of an employer with well-trained, hard-working, efficient and obedient employees.

    • Yeah, it honestly never occurred to me that squeeing technically qualifies as a form of envy

      • Heylir

        I would say it doesn’t (like selfless admiration of others’ talents and skills doesn’t), but Envy’s powerful presence twists one’s feelings for the worst.

        • JWLM

          Nah, this is Sid. We saw his wish for playing on the stage — by the way, well played, Kate — almost the first time we saw him “This is the only kind of magic I’d do if I could,” but his parents won’t let him.

          (ETA: Here’s the reference: .)

  • BaronHaynes

    Envy looks way creepier when it’s in its element.

  • Heylir

    I like Sid’s words becoming green as he “sings Envy’s song”.

    • JWLM

      And the they turn back to black with “oops”.

    • ThisCat

      His outline also changes colour, if you look closely.

  • Tut, tut. That young lady is showing an awful lot of knee, even if she is wearing stockings.

    • LA Julian

      The scandalousness implied by the old phrase so often used of circus riders and danceuses – ‘flesh-coloured tights’…!

    • Ghostdanser

      Shameless hussy…

  • Brother Nightmare

    Envy doesn’t know Sid yet does he? I sense our little wizard becoming a distraction. I mean, he can preform after all, maybe he will get to be in the spotlight for a bit.

  • mendel

    I still have that fox as my desktop wallpaper.

  • Sanjay Merchant

    Envy’s got a nice little setup here: the people who aren’t allowed in envy those who are, the people who ARE allowed in Envy the performers for their skill and fame, and the performers envy the audience for just getting to sit down and relax.

  • Jonathan Trouba

    You nearly walked into a damn riot, Verity. You don’t get to talk.

  • Sanjay Merchant

    You know, in these discussions, we kept talking about which virtues would be associated with which character, but it seems to be more the case of which hero has a what flaw that a given sin can exploit.

  • Tsapki

    Nyu, I still can’t decide if I like Envy’s look more as a fox or as a dragon-weasel…

  • Yeah, Sid – “oops”, indeed.

  • HaphMat

    Looks like Voss will be have a say in Envy’s demise, with that eye of his.

  • Ben New

    Considering Verity and Ben went right under Wraths influence, maybe she shouldn’t complain to much about Sid :D

  • Ocean Burning.

    Well, I sure hope Voss comes up with some sort of idea about how to weaken it soon…
    Meanwhile, back in the Anchor, Mal better be drawing the circle for Envy. I also hope this one is easier for him to draw than Wrath’s was.

    • Heylir

      The idea I came upon, first and at once, is an expansion of that Wolfe and Voss’ duet, sort of: some all-people performance, everyone dancing ang singing, something like this. Maybe, including people outside the Opera. I doubt the decision would be so simple, though.

  • Gary Foster

    “It went back to the fox form because I liked it.” I must say I’ve never heard a better author’s justification for anything, ever. 5,000 respect points to you, madam.

  • AquaBat

    Oh, who’s the one calling Sid a moron for being affected by Envy for all of two seconds and snapping out of it? Verity, one of two in the group who succumbed completely to Wrath for at least a minute and being incapable of snapping out of it herself, requiring calming music to shake it off?
    I guess it won’t be long until Pride washes over her too.

  • Nonesuch

    This from the lady who fell for Wrath’s schtick hook, like and sinker. :-/

  • Matt [in Middletown]

    Ben and Sid can perform a magic show!

  • This guy

    He couldn’t help himself!
    He is a very pathetic man.
    (Still lovable)

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