Funny when the story hits a rut, and I let it go to continue forward. But I hate leaving things be. This time I just assumed that part of the story had little meat to gnaw on and let it go to traverse elsewhere. But then inspiration comes along.
Inspiration isn't always a happy thought, an ethereal dream, or divine instruction. This time it comes straight out of the dregs of life. I can't always plan on these things, so sometimes the negative is inspiration enough to guide one through the muck and mire of a story. If I feel unbidden -- how does my character feel?
Then why do I write such a thing as a fantasy series? It's enough to convince someone to read a stand-alone, but a series? My epiphany -- I do it for the characters. Sounds strange, but I have given life to a group of folk I care about, and I don't want to abandon them now. Their story should be told. Andro Rhine has to mature through pain as well as life's joys. Time for the youngin' to grow. And now I know how he feels...the same as I do. We'll both get by.