Eulalia. Per my earlier comments, what a truly exceptional story and so superbly written — with characters that you have written into life. Having now finished reading it, and rereading many parts, totally join the deserved praise heaped upon this work by the principals here. Absolutely absorbing. Many, many bravos.
However. The story as ended leaves me unsettled. This story you have created, with its people and culture of tradition and family honor, can not be so ended as is without a false ring. Do not nearly know the Scot clan culture there as you, but know their ancestors likely are same as my mothers family and its mores in rugged southern hill country here. To wit: family blood debts are paid in blood. Always.
Can it be different with your story’s MacAlister clan? Daughter Lulie behaved honorablely in all her actions, yet was accused of disgracing herself, her family, her culture by the lies of the McRaes and was brutally whipped at their very hands to prove her courage. Can the men of her MacAlister clan just except such? Not in my mind.
And, what of Sandy and the McConchie honor. He was labeled a liar and caused his future woman to be beaten bloody when his testimony was disputed by the McRaes. If Lulie and Sandy are to marry, can the McConchie clan accept her with an unanswered honor debt? That’s two clans, the MacAlisters and McConchies, with outstanding family debts of honor.
This story cries out for continuing along so many lines (cut to sound of multitudes begging). In future rugs, will the McRaes be able to accuse any linkie just for more fun of whipping her bloody? Just my thoughts on needed vengeance and retribution.