oh gods, oh gods. I've been fretting all week about the direction of the trilogy, because the way the pieces had been stacked up it could only end badly for the reader, either through a cheap trick Deus Ex Machina impossible ending, or for the death of everyone involved.
I was screaming at myself editing these few pages and today the main protagonist handed me a reminder about one of her greatest fears, and in seconds everything snapped into place.
Don't outline Mari. Just listen to the characters. Why did I EVER stray from this?!
I am so happy I could cry. Even if nothing I write ever makes it to published status, I've found the key puzzle piece to unlock the problem.