As I mentioned before, I have been thinking about both making COT more 'accessable' (a dirty word sometimes) to non-Thief fans and un-gaming certain aspects of The Thief universe. One difficulty is that the story lacks a Fry. A Fry, as I have decided, is what you call the outsider that is put into the story mostly for the purpose of exposition. The Fry doesn't know what anything is or what is going on, so other characters have to explain things to them, or they have to observe and figure out things on their own that everyone else would take for granted. Sometimes it works well (like Fry in Futurama) and sometimes it's tedious and alienating (like making Neo not know what EMP is in The Matrix).
I did a little tinkering with it today, focusing on the fire arrows. First I found all cases where they are mentioned and renamed them to fire-arrows. Yep, a dash. A small distinction, but I think it's important to idenfity them as a thing and not as an adjective followed by a thing. Ghost is the only one in COT (so far) that uses or sees fire-arrows, and he's the farthest thing from a Fry (at this point in the story anyway ... later on he very much becomes one!) So the problem was, how do I have Ghost explain to the reader something that he would completely take for granted? I added this paragraph to the start of his first section, before he enters The Bonehoard.
I checked my gear one more time before going in. I always took more than I would need, not because I was afraid of running out, but because I wouldn’t use what I had if I was afraid of running out, and might do something stupid instead. I had a set of fire-arrows, which I had already carefully inspected to make sure that the explosive crystal tied to the end of each arrow-shaft wasn’t chipped or cracked, or had any other flaw that would cause it to blow up while in my quiver. I didn’t have many, not because they were rare or expensive – in fact I grew them myself in a few fire pits I tended in my basement – but because if I packed them in too tightly the sharp edges would rub against one another and sooner or later the whole set would become just one big fireball. On the other hand the bombs and mines were more predictable and more expensive, and tended to be used as more of a defensive last-resort. They were the most fun when combined with big flasks of oil, which I had, to really make sure that whatever was chasing me would regret it.
So I had him explain something he takes for granted by making him consider something he would not take for granted - them exploding. I think it works. What do you think? What else in the story needs a Fry to explain?