In the seventh chapter of Melting Stones, Evumeimei encounters the source of her discomfort. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read Melting Stones.
AHHHH, I FEEL LIKE I’M SO CLOSE TO THE TRUTH. I’m guessing that this is an issue of perspective. Since Evvy knows so little about the world of rocks and magma and volcanoes, then perhaps that’s why she hasn’t figured out why this new power is so infectious to her. But I also got the sense that Luvo didn’t quite understand what was happening either. Right???
Well, hold up, I’m jumping ahead of myself. As was the case in the last chapter, Evvy’s attitude and behavior is… altered? Affected? I’m not quite sure what the right word is here, and that’s largely because I don’t quite understand what she’s going through. It’s obvious that she’s ruder than she normally is; she’s quick to assume the worst of others, and her temper is at an all-time high. Whatever the fizzing is below the earth, it irritates her in a way that sets her off-balance. She is extremely inappropriate with Jayat, to the point that Rosethorn has to step in to remind her to behave nicely. (And when Rosethorn is telling you to be nicer, YOU KNOW IT’S REAL.)
What chapter seven provides us with is a release, then, a chance for Evvy to resolve the internal tension that she’s feeling. Her exploration of the rocks of Mount Grace is a confusing experience for the reader, especially since the details don’t seem to amount to any singular explanation. Something poisoned the rocks before bursting into the air aboveground. What sort of magic could do that? And why were all the rocks fizzing with power? I don’t think we’re given a big clue until after Evvy’s conversation with Nory, WHICH WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT BECAUSE OH MY GOD.
“My mother worshipped money. Then her ship got hit by lightning and sank while it attacked Winding Circle eight years ago.”
OH. OH. AND EVVY DOESN’T EVEN REALIZE THE CONNECTION TO HER FOSTER-SIBLINGS. Holy shit, Tris killed Nory’s mother. Why does Pierce think this is an okay thing to casually reveal to us? WHAT HAVE WE EVER DONE TO YOU?
Anyway, I want to focus on Evvy’sâ€¦ outburst? Her obsession? Again, I don’t know how to correctly quantify what happens here because it’s so bizarre. Even Evvy herself can’t describe it:
I can’t explain it. I just did it.
This compulsion to follow the source of the fizzing power to its origin scares me because Evvy is not the kind of character to be this impulsive. Look at how she survived in Chammur: she carefully planned her days, she was suspicious of everyone and everything, and she refused to indulge herself if it meant putting herself or her cats at risk. And now? She’s taking off on horseback (without a saddle!) to chase down a feeling. She ignores Luvo’s warnings and Rosethorn’s threats. Look, is there anything here more indicative of her state of mind than THAT??? She ignores Rosethorn’s VERY REAL threats of BODILY HARM. You know what’s not comforting, either? Luvo’s take on all this:
“However, I know the nature of what possesses her. If you wish to ride on, Jayatin, I will remain with her. We may be here for some time.”
Oh, okay! So you know what’s going on, Luvo! Care to share that with us?
“Moreover, I cannot tell you what it is that makes me so uneasy. I only know that Evumeimei pursues it.”
Yeah, I’m not at all comforted by this. How can Luvo know what possesses her but ultimately feel unnerved by where it leads them? That’s because Luvo knows that Evvy is drawn to the melted stone beneath the earth, the “molten heart” as he refers to it, and he is not even remotely down with heading to that place. It’s amazing to me how he responds to this, though I’m not surprised by his reaction. As he explains it, he was born in that place. Why would he return there? Even worse, he refers to it as a place where “no good [can] be found.” WHAT??? Perhaps this is what he was referring to:
The moving colors enchanted me, calling to me. I thought I saw faces in them and hands. They beckoned me to join the fiery spirits that swam in that pool. I could feel myself melting around the edges. What would it be like down there? Maybe it would be like joining one huge lake of melted stone and magic, with no beginning, and no ending.
I thought I would like that.
I’m gonna go ahead and say ABORT MISSION, EVVY. DON’T DO IT.
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