Summary of Sharra's Exile
PrologueLew and Kennard Alton have already spent two years on Earth since Sharra's awakening (see The Heritage of Hastur). Despite numerous attempts, Terran medics were not able to restore Lew's hand: Sharra has likely modified Lew's DNA. But with the help of the constant monitoring of his father, Lew is recovering his mind control and escaping Sharra's domination.
Lew and Kennard have been away from Darkover for three years now. No Comyn had
any contact with them during those years. Regis Hastur is now 18 years old and
has just finished his training has a Guard. He learns now how to rule a domain
by attending sessions of the Cortes. His lover, Danilo Syrtis, is being
prepared to rule the Ardais Domain and spent the previous winter doing so in
the Hellers. Danilo is now the adopted Heir of Dyan Ardais who is no more
trying to abuse him.
Lew and Kennard have been away from Darkover for five years now. As they arrive on Vainwal (a pleasure planet), they meet by chance Diotima Ridenow, who is there on "holidays" with two of her brothers, Lerrys and Geremy. The first meeting between Dio and Lew is a bit rough, but Kennard is eager to meet Darkovan people and invite the Ridenow to dine. After the dinner, Lew and Dio dance together and both feel very attracted by each other. The day after, they hunt together, using hawks and riding horses. They finally fall in love and despite her young age (about 16) Dio is courageous enough to bear a full telephatic contact with Lew, understanding and sharing this way the suffering he is enduring since Marjorie's death.
Lew lives since one year on Vainwal with Dio. He had never been happy again
since his departure from Darkover, but Dio has managed to heal him and at
least to make him more an more human. Moreover, she keeps Lew away from his
father: they have been to close to each other during their five years of
Book twoRegis is waked up by Marius Alton very early. Marius asks Regis for a favor: his close friend Rafe Scott stays with him in the Alton house in Thendara and he seems to suffer from a telepathic sickness related to Sharra. Regis feels anxious because he has just dreamed about Sharra. He goes therefore to the Alton house and manages to reach Rafe. They three young men begin to wonder about the return of Lew or Kennard: one of them might have brought back the Sharra's matrix. This is all the more dangerous as Kadarin and Thyra are alive (as told by Rafe). Regis feels uneasy as the return of the Alton might be a consequence of the warning he gave to Dyan: the Council thinks about giving the Alton domain to Gabriel Lanart.
The first day of the sixth Council season after the Alton departure happens shortly after these events. Prince Derik who has still not been crowned seems to be influenced by Merryl. The Council proposes to give the Alton Domain to Gabriel Lanart. But two challengers appears: Marius Alton and Jeff Kerwin Jr (aka Damon Lanart-Aillard). The situation is going more and more confuse as Derik announces that the Aldaran Domain is going to be reunited to the Comyn by means of the wedding he has arranged between Callina Aillard and Beltran Aldaran. In order to add more confusion to this situation, Lew Alton arrives suddenly in the Crystal chamber.
The Council is recessed for half an hour. Lew uses this time to dress in Darkovan clothes and to announce Kennard's death to his family (Marius, Jeff and Gabriel). Dyan himself is deeply hurt by this death. When the Council resumes, Danvan Hastur asks to the Council to delay the choice of the Alton Lord for seven days. The Council must now consider the problem of Callina wedding. Of course Callina does not want to marry to Beltran. But the older and most influent members of the Council (especially Danvan and Dyan) think that this marriage could be a good method to reunite the Comyn in order to face Terran colonialism. In fact, only the youngest members of the Council such as Danilo, Regis and of course Lew seem to remember Sharra's awakening and Beltran responsibility in these events.
Anyway, Derik has already invited Beltran for the Festival Night.
After the Council, Lew goes with Marius and Jeff to the Alton House in
Thendara. Rafe finds out some raivannin for Lew which enables him to
silent the voice of his father in his head (constantly repeating his final
order "go back to Darkover, fight for your brother's rights"). Lerrys
Ridenow comes to order Lew to divorce from Dio, arguing that she does not want
to see him anymore.
Regis Hastur visits with Callina Aillard in the Comyn Tower (situated in the
Comyn Castle). Callina tries to understand how Regis was able to rescue
Javanne from Sharra. Regis must have a quite uncommon laran, related to a
natural keeper ability, also related to the Hastur gift (the ability to work
with other matrixes without the complex training of a normal keeper). Callina
asks Regis to convince Lew to bring the Sharra's matrix in the Comyn Tower,
under the safe guard of Ashara. Just before Regis departure, we learn that
Beltran has started his journey to Thendara escorted by an army.
Lew has been wounded during the fight and Jeff heals him. After that, Gabriel
has Marius' body carried to the chapel in the Comyn castle. Marius is buried
two days later in Hali. A small procession goes there: Gabriel, Lew, Linnell,
Jeff, Andres and rather surprisingly Lerrys Ridenow. Regis and Dyan rejoin
them in order to pay homage to Marius. During the ride back to Thendara, Regis
tell to Lew the story of a strange rumor among the Guards about an Alton
child. Gabriel and Lew have no idea about who could have fathered such a
Regis and Danilo have just spent the night together. Danvan Hastur disapproves
this union and behaves toward Regis as if he were a child. Regis leaves his
grandfather rather angry and joins Danilo and Dyan for breakfast. They talk
about the political situation: Dyan would like to solve the Alton
succession. He wants Lew to give up the Domain to the mysterious Alton
child. Moreover, Dyan wants to ally with Beltran in order to use Sharra to
threaten the Terran: he wants them out of Darkover. It seems now obvious that
Merryl Lindir-Aillard, Dyan's minion, has used his influence on Derik in
order to have Callina marry Beltran.
Lew tries to convince the Council that Beltran is dangerous. He says that
there is a blood feud between Beltran and him, forgiving that blood feud is
not allowed among Comyn. Callina asks to Beltran if he has sworn allegiance to
the Compact. He plans to do so as soon as he will be accepted in the Comyn and
he plans also to give his terran weapons to his promised wife, Callina
herself. Callina resigns herself to marry with Beltran in order to avoid war
between Aldaran and the Comyn. The handfasting will be held at Festival
Night. Suddenly, a giant fire form of Sharra appears in the Council: Beltran
and several other Comyn lords fly away from the room. After the disappearing
of Sharra's illusion, Danvan declares the Council Session closed for the
On the morning of the Festival, Regis goes to the Terran headquarters in order
to meet up with Rafe Scott. On his arrival, Regis has a discussion with Dan
Lawton, the Terran Legate. Lawton wants to capture Kadarin and threatens Regis
with sending the Spaceforce in Thendara if the Comyn do not manage to catch
Kadarin. After this, Regis speaks to Rafe and frees his matrix. Rafe wants to
meet up with Lew in the Comyn Castle and Regis will try to arrange a
meeting. On his way back to the Castle, Regis stops to see Beltran offering
his Terran weapons to Callina. In a strong telepathic relationship with Dyan
Ardais, Regis manages to destroy all the weapons. He discovers this way that
Dyan has the Alton gift.
Lew leaves Marja in Andres's care and goes to seek Callina. They spend a few
moments with Linnell's twin, Kathie Marshall. She is still very tensed and
close to madness. In order to protect her, Lew put a sort of barrier around
Book threeAs Gabriel arrests Beltran, Regis goes to seek Prince Derik: the young man is also dead. His shields were weakened by the drinks and he couldn't resist Sharra. Regis is now King of the Domains.
On the next day, Terran forces begin to seek Kadarin in Thendara. Unfortunately, this is not easily accepted by Darkovan and Regis writes a personal message for the Legate Lawton so that he withdraws his men. He goes to look for Dyan: Regis thinks he might be a good messenger. He finally discovers him in the Aldaran apartment, where he is having a discussion with Beltran. Dyan reveals his plans: he wants to use Sharra against the Terran, in order to eject them out of Darkover. But in order to do that he needs someone with the Alton gift: Sharra cannot be operated without this gift. Regis almost flies away from the Aldaran apartment in order to avoid revealing to them that Dyan himself has the Alton gift.
Lew spends the night after Sharra's attack with Dio who heals him and tells him that Lerrys has flown away from Darkover. On the next day, he prepares to go to the rhu fead with Kathie and Callina: they need to get the Sword of Aldones, the only weapon able to defeat Sharra. Dio and Regis would like to help them, but Lew refuses arguing this might be to dangerous. They go out of the Comyn Castle through a secret exit starting from the Alton apartment and they ride to the Hali lake. They enter the rhu fead (Kathie is under Lew domination when they go through the Veil). Inside, Kathie is able to reach the Sword of Aldones, a matrix shaped as a sword. But when they exit from the rhu fead, they find Kadarin and Thyra waiting for them. Kadarin tries to get the Sword but he is repelled by it. Thyra turns mad as she thinks to Marja: she strikes Lew with her dagger. He is grievously wounded.
Dio and Regis are going back to the Comyn Castle when they receive a telephatic scream from Marja. When they arrive in the Alton apartment, they find Andres's body: he has been killed by Beltran when he tried to protect Marja. Shortly after, Regis is reached by Dyan thoughts: he is now aware of his gift and has chosen to serve Sharra. But before doing so, he managed to hide Marja in an unknown place, out of reach from Beltran. Just after that, Regis learns from Danvan that Dan Lawton is looking for him. Regis and Dio go to the Terran Headquarter and Regis authorizes Lawton to send a helicopter to Hali in order to rescue Lew, Callina and Kathie. When the helicopter comes back, Lew is almost dead, but Regis gets the Sword of Aldones and turns himself into Hastur: he heals Lew instantaneously.
Lawton puts in jail Kadarin and Thyra. After that, Regis tries, with the help of Callina, to clean Lew's matrix but he can't: the bound with Sharra seems too strong. Just after this failed attempt, Lawton comes to tell them Thyra has disappeared and suddenly Lew is teleported on the forecourt of the Comyn Castle. The final battle between Hastur and Sharra begins. Regis and Callina are on one side with the Sword of Aldones and Thyra and Kadarin are on the other side with Sharra. Lew is teared between them. But Dyan arrives and frees Lew from Sharra. The battle goes on and Regis manages to strike Sharra with the Sword of Aldones. Kadarin and Thyra disappear with Sharra. After the fight, Dyan dead body lies on the ground of the forecourt: if he had chosen to join Sharra, she would have defeated them. Callina is also dead and Lew finally understands that she was more or less possessed by Ashara before. Regis' hair have turned white.
EpilogueAfter the death of so many Comyn, Darkover needs to change: it is going to become a full member of the Terran Empire. Lew goes into exile with his wife Dio and his daughter Marja: he is going to be the first representative from Darkover to the Imperial Senate.
source file (Last modification: Wed Apr 21 17:21:45 1999)