Whereas in A Calamity Damantin has an undecided loyalty towards the kingdom that exiled and eventually murdered his father Sharad along with a neutral relationship with the series protagonist Spaulding the 6th novel turns 180 degrees and we see how the 10 year Äimite training has transformed Damantin (perhaps with the aid of some brainwashing) into a subservient guard. Whereas in A Calamity you cannot even imagine Damantin to wear the Äimite uniform in Quandary his officially new attire seems to mimic his complete change of heart to a new normal.
However despite his undeniable loyalty and dedication Damantin is still prone to bending the rules. In the first few pages of the novel it becomes fully apparent that Damantin not only has moved into the Äimite Castle on a permanent basis but he had a son named Neimar in complete secrecy. If you have read A Calamity it won't take you very long to confirm the identity of Neimar's mother.
It's a well-known fact that guards are officially celibate and in Diaspora we discover Lord Jamarnid was sentenced to death because he had a child with a human but Neimar lives among the guard like they are just one big family. While even Froylan himself was surprised he nonetheless seems awfully pleased with the innate talent of Damantin's offspring.
A second grey elf becomes an important supporting character in Quandary: Tioja. In A Calamity we briefly get to meet him in his most mentally unstable state as he fights against Leilandy with utter heroism and while he still shows traces of his disturbing behavior he seems to be recovering his once lost sanity and revealing he knows a lot more than it seems at first. Froylan has an ulterior motive for treating Tioja which was already hinted in A Calamity: after discovering the sorcery potential of demonic beasts he is on a quest to automatically invite any grey elf that can summon one to the guard. The fact that Tioja is still reasonably young and can summon one of the most powerful beasts in the world is just too tempting for him.
Richard is starting to show his age and rapidly declining vitality as he is already in his mid-40's at the start of this novel whereas Spaulding has finally started to show signs of aging. We are now fully used to seeing Froylan as the anti-hero of sorts by now and he's worried that the two series protagonists will perish from old age. After several drastic turns and twists of fate, the true hero to this story will be revealed in the final third of the book.
Quandary is my longest finished novel with approximately 120,000 words. I felt that I needed to gradually increase the word count not to annoy the reader but because of the utter complexity of telling the background stories of so many characters. Whereas Damantin seems to steal the show in A Calamity in the 6th novel we get to see a little bit of everyone. I do feel bad that Trevilin takes to the sidelines in this tale because there is more to him that isn't yet revealed but that can be reserved for later.
I feel vastly satisfied with this story and hope the readers will enjoy it as much as I did. If I had to choose a part of the story that I particularly loved it would be the two chapters dedicated to Lord Shuran. I enjoy knowing more about the past stories of varying recurring guards and Shuran's tale will surprise you all.