A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Obsidian Butterfly’ chapter fifty one


One of the things I liked about working with the police was that when you went into a business and asked to speak with the manager or owner, no one argued.

What kind of magical world do you live in? There are going to be plenty of business owners who are not going to be willing to talk to the police just because they get a badge flashed at them. Especially at Obsidian Butterfly, where they regularly mind rape customers which is very against the law.

Edward, Ramirez, and Anita sit around, waiting. They stare at the stone coffin on the stage. The high priest comes out again, to speak to Professor Dallas.

He was dressed only in that skirt thing, a maxtlatl, that left the legs and most of the hips bare.

That’s a loincloth, not a skirt. Plus, if you know what it’s called, why are you referring to it as a skirt?

Anita warns Ramirez that the high priest is a human servant but Ramirez doesn’t know what she’s talking about. Of course, Anita is the only one allowed to know about vampires. Apparently, they have arrived in the middle of a show… which is happening in the middle of the day. For some reason.

Anyway, there’s a mummy in the coffin. The mummy screams before deciding to monologue.

ETA Originally I ranted about how the Aztecs had no culture of mummification. A commenter informed me that they did. This is why writers are supposed to have editors, so they avoid fucking up!

“This one’s energy went to feed our dark goddess, but she is merciful. What was taken shall be given back. This is Micapetlacailli, the box of death. I am Nextepeua.

That makes him ‘he who rains ashes’ who is married to ‘the box of death’.

In legend I was the husband of Micapetlacailli, and I am still married to death. Death runs in my veins. My blood tastes of death.

What blood? You’re a dessicated corpse.

Only the blood of one consecrated to death will free this one of torment.”

OH is this the high priest talking? Would have been nice to know.

The high priest slashes his arm with an obsidian blade and drips blood into the mummy’s mouth. Edward wants to know what’s happening.

I whispered, “Magic.”

He looked at me, eyes showing too much white. “What kind?”

I shook my head. That I didn’t know.

The high priest is using blood to raise a corpse back up and make him seem lifelike. THAT IS THE SAME FUCKING MAGIC YOU USE.

The high prise flings blood around and the mummy comes back to life. It takes a page. The vampires blast the crowd with mindrape, which Ramirez questions, but apparently it’s okay if you mind rape an entire crowd. The high priest yells at the mummy about learning obedience to their dark goddess, and one of the Conquistador vampires is dragged up to the stage. In a g string. He is then turned into a mummy.

A jade ball gets shoved in Seth’s mouth, his lips are sewn shut, and he gets thrown in the coffin. Papa comes out on stage. Then the lights shine up so everyone can see how ‘pale’ the central American vampires are. All the vampires sing a hymn to Papa.  Anita then stands up, shouts for them to stop it all, and … goes up to the stage? Isn’t this place full with an audience? What is going on?

Papa wants to know how to make a triforce, although if she’s a thousand year old vampire – I can’t remember how old she actually is – and seeing as forming the triforce involved rolling around and dry humping, I fail to see how she doesn’t know. Anita stalls her and asks her who the Red Woman’s Husband is.

“The Red Woman was another term for blood among the Mexicannas, among the Aztecs. I truly don’t know who the Red Woman’s Husband would be.”

Yeah, that’s because that’s bullshit. Anita then asks him how Nicky Baco knew how to make mummies, although what he made was lots of people stitched together. Papa then drags the memories out of Anita on how to make a triforce.

After the memory dragging, Anita sees the world as vampires see it. Essentially, you gain a Sherlock scan and can tell everything about everyone you look at, making me wonder how vampires ever get executed, seeing as they know what you’re doing and what you’ve got on you in an instant. But it means that Anita knows Papa isn’t a goddess – because other gods beside the Christian one aren’t ‘real’ – and this means Papa is incapable of understanding what ‘truth’ is.

Anita decides to talk to Papa again.

There are only thirteen chapters left. Why is there so much stalling? Oh right, that’s because the plot is weak and no one gives a shit about solving the crime.

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4 thoughts on “A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Obsidian Butterfly’ chapter fifty one

  1. Laurell, stop making me back you up, damn it….

    ….there are Aztec mummies. Frankly, mummification is pretty widespread through Latin America, so just about everyone had some sort of form of it: the Inca are pretty notorious for preserving their rulers (and all of their property) after death, and, well, yeah, just take my word for it. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aztec_mummy (And just because it’s interesting, here’s a news article from *1887* discussing the finding of a few of them: http://cdnc.ucr.edu/cgi-bin/cdnc?a=d&d=SDU18870622.2.6)

  2. Frankly, I think the idea of Aztec vampire with a narcissistic/ God complex could be awesome. She’s hidden away in her temple (somehow going undiscovered) for hundreds of years, then comes to the New World, establishes a performance art club/cult and goes about a few at a time getting revenge on the descendants of the conquistadors. That sounds kind of cliche and campy to me but it would still be more interesting than this.

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