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Quotes: Jeanne Reames – “Becoming” (Dancing with the Lion #1)

“Jealous men invent stupid philosophies that claim some talents cheapen the soul.”

“I can’t bless this, son. I can’t. But I can’t stop loving you either. That’s not the way it works.”

“Sometimes when you forget who I am, I think you might actually like me.”

“Someday, gods willing, he’d be the king, yet he needed someone with whom he could still be Alexandros.”

“First, let’s consider the source of your information, and therefore, its reliability.”

Irritated, Alexandros snapped, “You’re dodging?”

“I’m not dodging, I’m inviting you to consider the information and its source. We are prisoners of our evidence, after all. If the evidence is poor, so will be our conclusions. So I ask again: What is the source of your information?”

“Everything. I want everything.”

“Does a fat memory make a wise man?”

“If there’s a tall tree, you have to climb it. If there’s a locked door, you have to open it. If there’s a crazy stallion, you have to ride him. You’re going to kill yourself with that kind of foolishness someday.”

Part of being king meant knowing when to let subordinates handle matters.

“What sort of king lets his men fight his battles while he hides in the rear?”

“It’s the eyes that betray a man. Watch the eyes, not the body.”

“I’m not sure if Alexandros is clever or just savage.”

“You can have the one without the other?”

“You’re too hard on yourself. Your fater’s been leading an army longer than you’ve been alive. Nobody expects you to think like a twenty-yera veteran, except you. You reacted quicker tonight than most. You didn’t get paralyzed; that’s something. What more do you expect from yourself?”

Being king makes it hard to be a father.”

“It helps to hear the words sometimes.”

“We can’t force another man to say or do what we’d like, Hephaision.”

“It’s worse to win and to know you shouldn’t have than to lose outright.”

“The things that mean the most – I don’t want to share. This -” He made a back-and-forth gesture between their bodies. “This is mine. Ours. I don’t want the rest of them to speculate about us, although I know they will. It’s none of their blasted business!”

“Friendship lasts but love rarely lasts past the next moon.”

“Everything is easier said than done. That’s the difference between a brave man and a coward.”

“Lack of self-control leads to extremes, and that way lies vice, just like too much wine leads to madness. This is true even of virtues. Too much bravery can lead to recklessness, or a lack of honest consideration for one’s safety, which might leave a man dead. Too much pride can lead a man to sulk in his tent while his best friend fights in his place- which can lead to a dead friend.”

Nobody missed the allusion to Akhilleus.

“Too much joy, a state of constant bliss, leaves a man unable to appreciate it because he knows no sorrow. Too much love leaves a man inclined to follow passion, not reason, acting ignobly, or against his own best interest. To act against our own best interest is akratía most purely, is it not? We may even recognize how it hurts us while we indulge in it, as if we can’t help ourselves. We become soft. Undisciplined.”

“I didn’t say you had to. And love is a good thing. In moderation. Like anything else. But too much love weakens you. What if he were to be captured in battle? Would you give your kingdom to ransom him? Would you surrender your people to slaughter in order that he might live? Are you his boy or his king?”

“With a mask, I’m an actor.”

“Exactly. A good king is the best actor of all. If you will wear that mask, you can have Hephaistion. If you won’t, you can’t. Men have to follow you. They won’t follow a king who’s another man’s boy.”

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