Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight!Then there's my current problem in the writerly line...
Pieces of nine and ten!
I was going great guns with a story, everything falling nicely into place, until I went back and read the earlier sections and realized my character would not have reached the false conclusion he did reach which sparked the great guns bit, because he'd specifically been told the truth of the situation back then.
My quandary is (besides the fact of liking the scene) that I myself often forget essential pieces of information and go trundling in the wrong direction until someone says 'But the meeting has been cancelled, I told you that already,' or some such. Oh. Yes. It is and you did. Actually I never forget cancelled meetings because it matters immensely whether I get my evenings or not (our meetings happen outside work hours.) But other things that ought to matter immensely get forgotten, especially if it's something I'm emotionally invested in.
I know this happens all the time and to other people. It gets even more illogical. I was once in a group therapy situation and I saw people, quite literally, not being able to understand the simplest sentence if it was something they didn't want to hear. The words didn't register as having meaning. On one occasion the sentence 'I think you aren't being honest with her' had to be repeated and rephrased for ten minutes until the genuinely bewildered guy it was addressed to grasped what it meant.
But that's real life. (Very possibly, it's my real life and there are people who haven't ever experienced that.) My guess is that in a story it looks weird. Would a reader not say But look you were *told* this? when my character forgets the piece of information that matters most to him, but remembers a minor something else that was said before? I believe it: the guy (it's Gouen BTW) has a deep if repressed suspicion about the source of the information (Kanzeon) however ostensibly unimpeachable that source is. I think his mind would seize on the bit that bolstered the worst interpretation and forget the bit that contradicted it: or assume that it was a lie, in spite of Kanzeon's reputation for truthfulness (which is my own invention by-the-by. Canon says nothing about the veracity of bodhisattva; we just give hir the benefit of the doubt, either by influence from the original Kuan-yin in the novel or because we read hir as Minekura's avatar or both.)
But I don't know if such deep, and such deeply human, psychology will uhh fly in a dragon king. I know I should just rewrite the scene. The trouble is that I can't think why else Gouen would do the very necessary thing he does next, if he didn't think he'd been betrayed yet again by Heaven.
ETAmend- unimpeachable. Jeez, my head.