In my previous excerpt, Andor the silver CatFox finds himself outfoxed by Nightshade at their first meeting. He raised himself in the Forests of Blacktail IsLand, having always been independent since his father left him to become a Pirate. Andor taught himself proper English, wishing to sound deceptively upright and very smart. His wishes came half-true. While Andor is highly intelligent and deviously clever, he is far from what Forever would consider upright. He keeps himself clean and his speech is flattering, but underneath, his temper flares and his mind is working at a strategy to overcome Nightshade.
At the beginning of the excerpt, he seems surprised that she knows how to defend herself. Most Women and Girls in Forever leave Warrior-work to the Men, since it is a physically taxing and very difficult trade. His mocking comments about her eyes and her hair are only used to distract her so he might have an opening to kill her. He seems to have an understanding that she has not seen another Creature of her same species, ever, much less one of the opposite gender. Now by CatFox terms, Andor is actually quite handsome, and he uses that also as a tool to manipulate his enemies. Surely Nightshade notices this, but since her father has trained her so hard, she is able to push it aside to focus on her defense.
Andor is, at the very least, dangerous. Few have escaped his hunt. He is a mere adolescent and has already built himself a terrifying reputation. He will try any and everything he can use to his advantage to tear down the defenses of his victims.
But Nightshade is different. He knows who she is, and like most adolescent Boys, he speaks from the things which catch his attention first, which is her eyes. They seem bewitching to him, and so he says something about them. Anything from Andor’s lips is a gambol. It could mean that he is trying to distract his victim, or that he is genuinely feeling that way, or perhaps a mixture of both. Andor is a confusing Creature to those he deals with, and most of the reason for that is because he himself is confused.
Being so young, he still has not discovered who he truly his. Certainly he thinks he knows he is a trained killer, but he is still tossing that up in his mind, although he doesn’t realize it. He also has a mean side to him, which is his mockery. Nightshade obviously does not take any of it from him. His burning desire for his bounty reward causes Andor to flex all of his best moves on Nightshade as he meets her for the first time. I always thought he may also be trying to show off for her.