Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Night's Mistress: Tanith Lee (1947-2015)

Fantasy / horror / SF Grand Master Tanith Lee passed away on Sunday. While I was a latecomer to her books, I was sufficiently blown away by the Tales of the Flat Earth sequence to teach Night's Master in Spring 2014. Here is the transcendent ending of that amazing novel:
     But abruptly Fair, the youngest of the seven sisters, crept to the window, and there in the east she saw a single yellow sword uplifted, the token that the sun was coming. What made her do it she never knew, but she hurried to the incredible man, and, kneeling by him, she kissed his mouth, and whispered: "Azhrarn, awake, for the sun returns to earth and you must return to your own kingdom."
     And the man's eyelids flickered up, and two dark fires blazed suddenly between the bladed lashes, and he smiled, and touched the lips of Fair with his cool fingers. And then he was gone.
     The room was filled with screaming yet again, while a black eagle rose unseen into the sky of earth, turned on its broad wings, and vanished without trace.
     Moments after, the bright sun rose. But be sure, the age of Innocence was ended.
Rest in peace, Tanith Lee.