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Lucius Mattheson

Favourite Malifaux Stories

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I think my favorite story is in one of the 1-1.5 books (forgive me, I have misplaced them and can't cite the story) which involves a stagecoach ride shared by Rusty Alyce, the "original" Victoria, a woman named Dora and her baby.

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Thank you for your reply: the story ('Doppelganger') can be found in the core volume, in the 1.5 edition pp. 200-202. I must compare the texts of the first edition and the 1.5 edition and produce a variorum edition one day!

It's an interesting story, isn't it -- the title might be loosely applied to Dora and her child ('one who is not as one seems', a misapplication) but is only later revealed to be a reference to a true Doppelganger. The ambiguity surrounding Dora and the Doppelganger is very well handled, at no point is their rrelationship to one another or to their schemes made explicit, least of all in the fascinating betrayal that forms the central element of the story. Such ambiguity and the unexplained nature, emotional parasitism and strange powers of the Neverborn draws heavily on the terror-fear of the unknown and is its greatest strength -- in ambiguity lies the unknown, in the unknown is true fear.

The description of the child is very well handled and the use of humour is adroit and  does not detract from fear and betrayal.

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