The next chapter, “Ambitions,” opens with an in-milieu commentary about the interrelatedness and distinctions of magics in the world of the Elderlings. It moves then to Fitz mulling over his hubris in presuming to be able to teach Dutiful the Skill and the many tasks facing him amid the instruction. The course of his days during the winter is noted, as is his reluctance to engage Thick about the Skill.
Amid their talk, Fitz confers with Chade about Dutiful’s rapid progress in the Skill and realizes the effects of age creeping up on his great-uncle. Talk turns to Thick, as well, and Fitz mulls over his Skill-training with Galen and the depravities of his once-teacher. And Chade’s own longing for the Skill comes to the fore, with the older man admitting its intensification against the exigencies of increasing age. Conversation turns sharp, and Fitz retires to his own chambers, mulling over his personal connections.
Hap occupies much of Fitz’s thoughts, and he does not like that Svanja so often accompanies Hap when he sees his foster-son. He also calls on Jinna, trying not to fall into a habit of assignation with her and not succeeding. Fitz mulls over his hypocrisies as the chapter closes.
I don’t know that there’s necessarily much on which to comment in the current chapter, other than references to earlier events I’ve linked already. I suppose the ruminative interlude on display is a good thing, though, allowing for some explication as well as altering narrative pacing. Such does not offer much for engaging commentary though, even if an occasional breather is a welcome thing amid reading.