In the sixteenth chapter of The Kingdom of Gods, I’m 400 pages into this and I’m still so unprepared it hurts. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read The Kingdom of Gods.
No, stop the plot twists. Stop doing this to me.
- THE OPENING OF THIS CHAPTER IS SO INCREDIBLE AND GAME-CHANGING AND THERE ARE STILL LIKE TEN MORE PLOT TWISTS THAT FOLLOW THAT ALL UPSTAGE IT. How? How is this happening? I’m not imagining this, am I?
- Because Sieh was DYING in the opening bit, and he was dying in a way that was UNDENIABLY TERRIBLE. The mask wearer had PUNCHED THROUGH ORGANS AND PART OF HIS SPINE. And look, I thought that maybe Deka might be able to save Sieh, since his powers weren’t totally defined, so it’s not like that would have been some impossible thing. I also thought that Jemisin had long ago shown us she wasn’t afraid to kill off the main character, either.
- I did not expect Deka to touch Sieh while touching his sister and then Sieh is somehow experiencing all of time and space at once and realizing that the power between these three is coming back, only this time, it’s controlled, and then
- “But there was no reason for this. No precedent. They’d changed the universe. A pair of mortals. They’d changed the universe to heal me.”
- WHAT THE FUCK, THIS IS NOT ANYTHING I CONSIDERED IN A MILLION YEARS.
- THEY BENT TIME THROUGH SOME MYSTICAL POWER AND FOLDED SIEH BACK TO THE MOMENT WHERE HE WAS INJURED AND THEY ALTERED THE ENTIRE FUCKING UNIVERSE TO SAVE HIM.
- Which, let me just state, is the definitive display of friendship in the history of EVERYTHING EVER. Do you have best friends? You haven’t done shit when compared to Deka and Shahar. Have you supported a friend in a time of need or let them borrow money or given them a sympathetic ear? THESE FUCKERS CHANGED THE UNIVERSE TO SAVE THEIR FRIEND.
- My life is trash forever after this.
- Okay, I’m being ridiculous, I know, but I can’t get over how this is just… it’s unreal. It’s mind-blowing. It’s a sign that the power these three have is undeniably potent and frightening.
- In rapid succession, we learn there were TEN masks in the crowd, and that due to the CHANGE IN THE UNIVERSE, Nemmer was able to capture a “living” mask wearer so that Dekarta could examine him. No one else died aside from the ten unknown humans. Then we see Remath act really weird??? I mean, now that I know the ending of this chapter, I think her behavior in the beginning of this chapter is evidence of what she was planning, which meant that the emotions that poked through her Arameri stoicism were real.
- As all the characters go off to deal with the MILLION THINGS THAT JUST HAPPENED, Sieh agrees to wait in his old room for a secret meeting between Deka and Shahar. And lord, y’all, this is all so drenched in sadness and longing. Here’s a character confused about his role in the ever-changing world, whose body is dying, who’s also coping with the complicated things he feels for the people who just saved his life and for his family. So when he’s in his old room, it’s hard not to see a lot of sadness in the scene. The room is full of memories for him, some triggered by physical objects in his room, like his pile of rags. I think it’s important, then, that this is where Sieh finally proposes a theory as to what happened all those years ago that stripped him of his godhood. So much of this section of the chapter is about looking at the past, and it fits that they’d all do so in a place that holds physical memories for Sieh.
- Anyway, let me just talk about the thing that ruined me.
- Well, there were a lot in this chapter, honestly.
- “Well, think of what happened last time. You wanted me to be your friend, a true friend – something that I could never have been as a god. You would have grown up and understood how different I was. You would have become proper Arameri and wondered how you could use me.” Now I looked at Shahar, whose lips tightened ever so slightly. “If I had stayed a god, our friendship would never have survived this long. So you, some part of you, made me into something that could be your friend.”
- SOMETHING LIKE A MORTAL HUMAN, PERHAPS
- THIS BOOK IS DESTROYING ME, BECAUSE THIS MAKES TOO MUCH SENSE NOT TO BE TRUE
- OH MY GOD, THE POWER OF FRIENDSHIP RUINED SIEH’S EXISTENCE.
- EVERYTHING HURTS.
- Of course, I should note that Deka makes a good point after hearing this: Sieh is the only one who makes this act possible. Deka and Shahar have made physical contact with one another before, and nothing happened. It’s only when they join with Sieh that this power is activated.
- THEN YEINE SHOWS UP AFTER DEKA AND SHAHAR LEAVES. No, chapter, you have to give me a break. You have to! I can’t sustain this!!!!
- Y’all, it’s so fulfilling to read a work by someone who unequivocally gets her characters. Jemisin demonstrates her mastery of this world and the context that informs the behavior of each character in this scene. For example, Yeine’s “youth” as a god is taken into account as she tries to comfort Sieh; Sieh, in this sense, is both the son and the elder, cynical relative, and it’s just so surreal to read. Yeine’s recent mortality absolutely matters, and I think it’s why she tells Sieh that it’s okay for him to pursue happiness with these mortal twins. (In her own way, that is.) And she’s gentle here in a way that works as a mother figure and because she was once mortal herself. She understands mortals better than Sieh does. Sometimes. IT’S COMPLICATED.
- Laughing to keep from crying at Yeine saying that the next day will be interesting. You little trickster, YOU TRICKED ME AND SIEH.
- Oh god, the meeting. REMATH’S MEETING IS ON THE (very long) LIST OF THINGS NOT OKAY IN THIS BOOK.
- I mean, the second Remath said that “the Arameri must change,” I thought she was joking or pulling some bit of mischief because HA HA HA THAT’S IMPOSSIBLE.
- I cannot believe that I never once considered that the High Northerners were sending inactive masks all over the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms so that, in essence, Sky would be surrounded by potential assassins AT ALL TIMES.
- Just… this book is brutally unfair.
- “Shahar. With the aid of Dekarta, and our family’s most capable members, you are to oversee the preparation of a new home for the Arameri.”
- that can’t
- that can’t be a thing that’s happening
- AND THEN YOU THINK ABOUT IT FOR LIKE FIVE SECONDS AND HOLY SHIT IT’S SO PERFECT. Because if your enemies are placing these masks in every part of the known world, then go to the unknown part. Hide the Arameri from everyone ever. I mean, it’s a ridiculous plan, one that Remath knows is absurd. Sieh is quick to point out that there’s no real realistic way for Remath to have a palace built somewhere without anyone finding out. Who builds it? What happens to the workers afterwards? And even if you take the traditional Arameri path and kill them all, that’s still evidence of something!
- For the record, I’m still sticking to my Draco/Voldy hug comparison when discussing Remath hugging Shehar for the first time probably ever. Painfully awkward and strangely intriguing? I admit that this all made me want to know the real Remath more than ever.
- So yeah, this can’t work? Right?
- ha ha ha
- Yeine’s promise does come true. This meeting sure proved to be interesting.
- BECAUSE YEINE WILL BUILD THE PALACE IN EXCHANGE FOR THE ARAMERI WORSHIPPING HER INSTEAD
- i can’t even fathom the ramifications of this. I CAN’T.
Please note that the original text/videos contain uses of the words “mad” and “stupid.”
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