Morrigan is so important

Real talk, tho: I’m forever wounded over how Morrigan says that Kieran being an incredible child isn’t her doing, and how she does is try to inflict as little damage as possible. Because that alone shows just how deep the abuse Morrigan suffered as a child scarred her, and how terrified she is to make these mistakes, even by accident.

And basically how some adults that suffered extensive abuse and violence as children feel like, when they get to the point they become cognizant of the trauma they went through and how that shaped them?

It’s… How many adults that suffered abuse in the hands of their parents feel when they become parents themselves. The fear of hurting them is terrifying, choking, paralyzing. And it’s part of healing.

For Morrigan to show that… It’s so important.

anonymous asked:

do you think mor and azriel are mates bc they've spent so long with one another and the bond hasnt snapped into place??

Okay so before I start I want to say that a lot of this is sort of my headcanon and sort of ‘what I’d do if I was given free reign to write this relationship’ it’s not AU by any stretch of the imagination but it might not also fully reflect canon either though it’s drawing from it. Basically none of this should be taken as a solid ACOTAR 3 theory; this is what my general thoughts and musings. Right, weird disclaimer out of the way, on to business.

To answer your question in a word: yes. Yes I think they’re mates who just haven’t let themselves feel/allow the bond to be accepted between them (and if this is the case then it’s another fascinating thing we can use when talking about mating bonds because I feel like there’s a lot more choice involved than might originally be considered)

To now ~*~meta~*~ on your question Mor and Azriel’s relationship dynamic is rich, layered, complex and frankly delicious. As a fic writer, as a sometimes meta-wonderer, as a general human being with vague thoughts bouncing around in my head it’s fascinating. 

For one thing I think it’s another really really well done relationship stereotype subversion (much like we see with Tamlin/Feyre). We’ve seen these unrequited love type things before where the guy falls in love with a girl and can’t let her go and continues to love her without either of them ever acting on/responding to these feelings but I’ve never seen one that I would deem healthy or positive or non-toxic it always has massive issues that I don’t see at all with this pairing.

Yes Azriel has been in love with Mor for centuries and neither of them has acted on these feelings but I think that’s where the similarities end. For one thing it’s not obsessive and it’s not jealous. The narrative makes it explicitly clear that both Mor and Azriel have had various other lovers in the past few centuries. Az never attempts to badmouth Mor or her partners for this, never attempts to control her or tell her she can’t/shouldn’t be with someone other than him, never polices her in any way at all (which given her backstory is incredibly important for her character and the narrative as a whole given its emphasis on choice and agency)

Secondly the love between them is mutual. It’s never as explicitly stated with Mor, like Feyre never makes the out loud observation that ‘Mor loves Az’ the way she does with him but I think it’s still explicit enough. The way she protects him, the way she speaks for him, the way they are with one another, the way she behaves when he’s shot. I don’t think I can find a label to slap on to define exactly how they love one another (platonic, romantic, familial) except to say that I think it’s unconditional. These two will love each other, protect each other, die for each other until the end of time and nothing is ever going to change that about them.

Thirdly their feelings are open. Mor is 100% aware of the way that Azriel feels about her (and I think Az knows the way she feels about him too but again it’s difficult to be sure because we never really see much from Az’s POV in any sense, we get much more insight into Mor because she’s much more open as a character) But I don’t think either of them hides the way they feel, I think that love is as open as it is unconditional they’ve both simultaneously agreed without speaking that they’re not going to take that last step and have it become romantic but they’re both aware of how the other feels I think. 

Which brings me to the fourth thing I love about this pairing: they both have reasons/concerns about being with one another. It’s not a case of he has feelings for her but she doesn’t have feelings for him so he’s just going to pine forever and refuse to move on. And it’s not a case of ‘Azriel has self-worth issues and that’s the only reason they’re not a couple’ that’s too simplistic as well. They both have issues about committing to one another in a romantic relationship that are addressed within the narrative and responded to by the characters but I’ll get to that.

Azriel’s issues are more explicitly obvious as Mor lays them out on the table in a nice easy to manage manner for us:

‘ “The issue, actually, wouldn’t be me. It’d be him. I could peel off my clothes right in front of him and he wouldn’t move an inch. He might have defied and proved those Illyrian pricks wrong at every turn, but it won’t matter if Rhys makes him Prince of Velaris—he’ll see himself as a bastard-born nobody, and not good enough for anyone. Especially me.” ‘

This I think is another one of those ways where SJM subverts our expectations on something. This is something we’ve seen/heard a lot before, character A not feeling worthy of character B and not entering into a romantic relationship with them because of it but I think it’s different with Azriel, firstly because it’s very firmly grounded and rooted in the trauma that he suffered as a child and is therefore very understandable and relatable to a reader but also because of the way Mor reacts to it?

This pairing is respectful as all hell with each other; they respect the other’s agency and right to choose and be wary and not be ready at all times which is one of the big reasons this ship isn’t romantically canon yet. But Mor never invalidates Azriel’s feelings or situation here. She never tries to say ‘you don’t think you’re worthy of me but I do so that’s that problem solved’ she never tries to overcome or undermine this insecurity on his behalf, she never tries to push him on it because she knows he’s not ready, she’s knows why and she’s utterly respectful of that choice and part of him.

Mor’s issues I think are less explicitly stated but I think they’re also present and I think they revolve around commitment issues her fear of getting hurt and mostly her fear of hurting him. Mor is incredibly protective of Azriel throughout the book, she’s always first to meet him when he returns from missions, she intervenes in conversations to redirect the flow or the topic on his behalf, she’s very conscious of any points he’s uncomfortable or distressed, she tries to warn him off accepting dangerous missions, the way she acts with him after he’s poisoned/shot and the fact that it’s her who we see healing him when they return from Hybern.

‘“I’ve had lovers,” Mor clarified, “but … I get bored.” ‘

and then: 

‘Mor closed her eyes as she tipped back her head, sunning her golden face with the same irreverence that Cassian perhaps sought to shield Azriel from—and Mor herself perhaps tried to shield Azriel from as well.’

I think Mor’s carefree attitude is both a blessing and a curse and it’s a curse for her romantic relationships. I think she’s scared of committing, I think she’s scared of getting too close and I think she’s scared of giving someone the power to hurt her (which is again informed by her past and her trauma and completely understandable both to the reader and to Azriel. These characters know each other’s history in and out and remember it was Azriel who found Mor after everything that happened he knows very clearly and starkly where these feelings stem from with her) and I think she’s also afraid of her carefree nature and that irreverence and her habit of getting bored with her lovers coming back and hurting Azriel which is absolutely the last thing she would ever want to do.

I also think this is important to consider with Mor:

‘ “After I got what I wanted, after … everything, I didn’t like that it caused a rift with him and Rhys, or even him and Az, so … never again.” ‘

I think Mor is afraid. She’s reckless and fearless and careless about absolutely everything except the people that she loves. This little family that’s she’s built around herself, this little network of support, the people who fought for her, would kill and die for her without a moment’s hesitation mean the world to her. Mor was the dreamer born into the Court of Nightmares and this family helped her get out; this family became her hope and her light and her Court of Dreams and taught her how to live again and I think the only thing that scares her is the thought of losing them. And I think she’s afraid both of hurting Az at some point if she gets scared and backs out on him but she’s also scared of alienating Cassian or Rhys by pursuing things with Az.

The dynamic that this group has means everything to her and I don’t think she wants to risk it, she doesn’t want it to change and I think that’s exactly the reason she hasn’t confronted Az about the way they feels: she’s afraid of changing things between them. If she never steps up and says anything, if they never act on these feelings then they can still have the relationship that she cherishes right now. She can still love him and defend and protect him and he can still do all those things for her and she never has to risk losing it. I think she feels a romantic relationship is kind of an all or nothing thing? Either it’s the best decision she’s ever made and everything she’s ever dreamed of and hoped for or it’s a disaster and they both get hurt and she ruins everything that means so much to her.

And again this isn’t something that Az never ever pushes her on. He never tries to escalate their relationship, he never tries to address or overcome these fears. He respects them. He respects where they come from and why she has them and he accepts her for the way she is. This pairing is incredibly respectful and incredibly accepting of one another’s faults and fears. I think neither of them wants to try and force the other to change for them. Both of them have experience with being controlled and harmed by other people in this way and they’re both aware of the other’s past and I don’t think either of them wants to be that person who tries to make those decisions for them.

Okay so to swing back round to the mating bond thing (because no I hadn’t forgotten about it I just went on a really long tangent) for me I think it’s the perfect, not exactly solution that’s too neat and easy it isn’t just going to make these things magically go away but I think it would help ease their fears?

For Azriel, knowing that he’s Mor’s mate, that he’s quite literally made for her would go a long way to overcoming his fears because I think a big part of the mating bond is the idea of equality, the idea that this person completes and balances you in every way, they can look at your darkness and match it with their own, they can find the same light in you that you can find in them, they can take all of your punches and give them back as good as they get.

And I think for Mor it would help with the commitment thing because this is, again, the person she’s made to be with, the person who knows and accepts all of her, who will always be there, who has been patient and understanding and will know what to do if and when she gets scared and he’s her mate which is a pretty big pointer that committing to him is going to be a good decision to make.

I think that they sort of have all the traits you’d want in a mate? Everything that I’ve mentioned above, they love each other mutually and unconditionally, they’re protective over one another, they would do anything for each other, they can’t bear to see the other hurt (and I think there’s a case to be made for Mor being incapable of causing him pain too which is a big thing for mates – when her actions against the king result in Azriel crying out in pain she backs down immediately and the first thing she does afterwards is go to him and place a hand on his wound) they understand one another, they accept one another completely, they’re very supportive of one another – they are equals in every sense that I can think of. Mor brings the light out of him and a side to him that nobody ever sees and I think he grounds her and anchors her – they are what the other needs in a partner, they are the others perfect counter and answer to every question their souls might ask. 

I think there’s a definite connection between them but I also think that the lines they’ve refused to cross for all these years have never quite pushed them across it. I have various headcanons for how the bond between them makes itself known and they become fully aware that they’re mates and accept the bond but these are just pure hc/fic planning, they have little to no meta basis in canon whatsoever so I won’t mention them here.

I do think that it’s entirely possible and even likely that they’re mates but even if they’re not I don’t think it undermines this relationship between them and I don’t think them not being romantically canon undermines it either. While I would live if we got romantic canon and an acceptance of this potential mating bond in ACOTAR 3 I don’t need it. And I will equally lose my shit at like, soft forehead touches and quiet ‘I love you’s. All I really want is to see the bond they already have deepen.