“That’s not going to fit,” she told him.
He responded with a smirk.
“You think so?” he relied in a sarcastic tone. “All your Consortia knowledge tell you that.”
“I could help,” she offered.
Traejan, however hasn’t had the benefit of Althea’s conversation(and conversion)with Kyso. Despite his apology, He’s still pretty much in the same state he was the night before, feeling resentful and guilty at the same time. No one’s going to completely change their viewpoints after a little chastising. He’s looking for what he expects in her eyes and her words as well as keeping up the front he’s presented to her.
It’s what he’s accustomed to.
This leaves Althea no choice(if she is going to get the answers she wants)but to rise to the challenge, at least in response to his mood, however sympathetic she feels. What empathy she does feel, however, certainly blunts her tone.
She’s capable of being much harsher.
But, hey, this is a novel. It should be expansive enough to explore a POV character’s breadth of personality.
Traejan, on the other hand feels like offering challenge to his aching guilt. And she’s forced into the same position as with Kyso, ameliorate his pain and despair.
Like before, she makes the approach with clear stated goal, then waits for Traejan to open up.
When he doesn’t, she does get a bit frustrated. She’d received the line before, but this is something she’s already familiar with, and it rankles her that he still thinks she’s ignorant and unaware of the situation she’s fallen into.
Ignorance isn’t the flaw that put her in her current circumstance. It’s her unwillingness to accept reasonable limits.
This reduces her sympathy somewhat, increasing her aggravation. So she forces the issue, and waits to see how he’s going to respond. And while she doesn’t have to wait long, he isn’t going to give it up easily.
Well, he isn’t Kyso, is he?
“Traejan,” she tried a more serious tone. “I won’t tell you how you should feel about what happened to you. Or about who and what you’ve lost.”
Traejan glared at her sharply.
“But we are going south – at least I am – probably Kyso too,” she continued sternly. “You’re going to have to decide soon whether or not you can do it. I won’t think the worse of you if you can’t.”
On the other hand, you can from the text above, Althea isn’t above her own passive aggressive level of manipulation. She’s saying that she *is* going to tell him how he should feel, an interpersonal equivalent of the politician who states, ‘I’m not calling my opponent a Nazi, but…”
Again, every interaction in a story is an opportunity for a writer.
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