Lioness Rampant: The Completion Of a Journey
All lives have keystones within them, important moments that stand out in our memory and are often reached after many years of hard work. These journeys are important in terms of their achievement, but what do you do after? Once you’ve reached the mountain peak, what’s next? Where do you go from there?
In Tamora Pierce’s novel, Lioness Rampant, Alanna faces these very questions. She’s achieved everything that she’s set out to do; she’s become a knight and killed Duke Roger, her arch nemesis and the greatest threat to Jonathan and Tortall. Alanna has also sought and found adventure, but has already had her fill of it and wonders if this is all the purpose her life will have.
As Alanna begins to feel adrift, a new quest crosses her path; the Dominion Jewel, a magical artifact of immense power. Passively, it improves the lot of the land of the one who wields it. But when in the hands of a sorcerer who can wield the full breadth of the Jewel’s abilities, the very land itself can rise up and fight invaders.
Finding the Jewel an bringing it back to King Roald would prove to all that she had rightfully earned her shield as well as smooth over the ruckus created by the revelation of her true sex and the killing of Duke Roger. As dangerous as the quest is it is imperative that she complete it and return to Tortall as great dangers, new and old, rise against Jonathan. As the fight for the future of Tortall comes to a head, Alanna must prove that she is the Lioness in spirit as well as in name. For Duke Roger of Conte is back from the dead and has not forgotten how close he came to the throne, nor the one who denied it to him.
Because all journeys have a beginning they must also have an end. It can be difficult after struggling for a long time to achieve your goal and try to figure out what comes after. But as Alanna’s final adventure shows, what you do after your journey is just as important as the path you took to get there.