woot woot - I love it when a group of people band together to solve a riddle and some of the hidden text within DG's work certainly takes on the flavour of a riddle every so often..and the treasure is one of those threads that weaves it's way in and out of the story and sometimes disappears altogether only to appear in the most unlikely places later in the story...so I am very grateful to:
Great questions Repoman. I think Lisa SF's got the way of it below:Repoman said:
Was Duncan trying to return the treasure to Ellen as a MacKenzie? In his illness, did Duncan think that he would find Ellen with the silkies?
Did Jamie simply return the treasure to the location where Duncan had removed it? Hmmm. (Keep in mind that Geillis apparently instructed the pirates where to look for it!)
Oh well done you! either it means the rock 3rd from the tower at the devil's cauldron, or it means the one that the three silkies always sit on or something of that ilk! I think perhaps Duncan wasn't strong enough to return the gold to it's fated resting place and so perhaps got it as far as the shrine before he was caught. In essence when he realised that Jamie, in essence the only "Mackenzie" around was right in front of him, he probably just breathed a big sigh of relief knowing he could pass the baton onto the next man to carry the weight (pun intended) of the secret of the gold.Lisa SF said:
She heard the silkies singing, there upon the rocks, one, and two, and three of them, and she saw from her tower, one and two, and three of them..."
Sounds like a code that Jamie, alone of all in that room, might understand -- directions to where to find the treasure, or advice about where to keep it hidden.
I agree that the "white witch" now, as is common in DG's writing, is likely to mean both the location of the treasure (the saint's pool) and a reference to who it comes from. I'm thinking though that Jamie would have known at least the St Bride's bit but I also think that he would have hoped that somehow it had come from Cliare too. After all he knows that she's not really dead, just gone...he even takes pains to tell the "Wee Major" I love that knickname! that she's "gone" not "dead". My heart breaks in this scene when he talks of her.
As to the title "White Witch's Curse"....do you think that's because having the gold, is one thing, and all well and good, but actually being able to use it or convert it to money or food or goods is actually very difficult and will draw down the crown on your head (ha ha), so it's of absolutely no good to you if you have it anyways?
Or does it simply refer to Duncan's saying "It is cursed"