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Who is Oda Thahn?
A warrior, veteran of a thousand skirmishes. They call her bastard, not for the blood in her veins.
Once after a battle, she stood in the field, sharpening her blade on a crushed skull, chuckling to herself about all the people she‘d brought together. When her commander asked what she meant, Oda Thahn pointed to a grisly stain on her uniform. “Here”, she said, “was a monarchist.” Lowering her finger just a few inches, she continued: ”Here, a separatist. Who can tell them apart any longer?” Then leaned her head back and laughed, full throated. She was discharged before she could compose herself.
Now she walks the land alone. Seasoned warriors hide like thieves when she approaches. Seasoned lovers hobble away from her tent, late in the night. She only cares for what wealth she can carry, what pleasures she can experience without attachment. She has her armor and her sword, against all the obstacles life has to offer.
But the Trials of Oda Thahn are just beginning.
Dathonah, in his clay house with the thatched straw roof. Dathonah, in his sullied robes, the remnants of both medicine and illness in full view on the cloth. Dathonah, the outcast, the healer, the madman. But if you had an illness, you would be mad to not visit him. The burial ground is filled with the bodies of optimates who wouldn’t deign to be seen beyond the edges of town, where his house stood.
Of course, consider young Tal, whom Dathonah pulled back from the brink of consumption as a youngling. Tal, emerging from an embattled slumber at dawn, and screaming through hoarseness until the sun was full in the sky. Tal, who now speaks only slightly above a whisper, and always seems to look through you when she meets your eyes.
Or Anto, don’t forget Anto. He visited Dathonah in his twentieth summer for help mending a broken leg. Drank several potions, slept through many hours with foul-smelling poultices wrapped around his leg. All with Dathonah singing those damnable Fae-songs. Now he walks farther, works longer than ever before, complains less. But in the days surrounding the New Moon, he is never anywhere to be found. As soon as the first sliver of gold reappears in the night sky, he returns. Anto has never been quite able to say where he goes during this time. You can’t be sure if he even knows that he’s been gone.
Now, Dathonah must go, as he does every year, to gather rare herbs from underground. The sickly, pale leaves he collects are the groundwork of his apothecary. The journey is not without risk, so he’ll need to bring some of his prescriptions for himself.
An album with two souls, which are those of the two protagonists of this adventure, poised between poetry, dream and harsh reality: the she-warrior Oda Than and Dathonah, the outcast healer. An album that will never bore you, because among its notes there is a kaleidoscope of changing emotions and powerful visions.
But above all, the album of a true veteran of the US dungeon-synth scene: Mr. Adam Matlock, below the pseudonym of NAHADOTH.
supported by 41 fans who also own “HDK 48 † The Trial of Oda Thahn / Dathonah's Prescription”
Very relaxing,it evokes a fantasy land... like a distant and ethereal vision of an old elven town lost in the ancient, misty woods... I am not familiar with Ursula K. Le Guin yet but makes me want to check it out! Roquemaure