What up, Tor.com? Ready for another RROK? That’s what I thought!
This blog series will be covering The Ruin of Kings, the first novel of a five-book series by Jenn Lyons. Previous entries can be found here in the series index.
Today’s post will be covering Chapter 85, “Death’s Front”, and Chapter 86, “Returning”. Please note that from this point forward, these posts will likely contain spoilers for the entire novel, so it’s recommended that you read the whole thing first before continuing on.
Got that? Great! Click on for the rest!
Chapter 85: Death’s Front
[In which… well, I’m not sure.]
No, seriously, I’m not sure. This was a chapter full of explanations that weren’t really explanations and exposition that raised more questions than it answered, which is a frustrating but common element of stories where Weird Shit Is Happening But The Story Is Not Quite Ready For You To Know Why Yet.
This is fine, as long as it doesn’t stretch on to intolerable levels. Since we’ve got like three chapters left, one would assume that this won’t happen, but the certainty of sequel novels means this might not all be explained to us before the end of the book, sadly. But then, that’s why we go and buy the next one, isn’t it?
So, right, like I said, a lot of Kihrin and Janel-possibly-aka-Elana’s conversation in this chapter is more obscure than it isn’t, but some things can be determined. The main one being, seemingly, that Janel has (for some reason) only a night pass for demoning and the rest of the time she’s in the “real” world – or at least she was until Kihrin accidentally almost killed her and healed her with half a dragon heart. Like you do. And now she’s trapped in Demonland unless Kihrin can get her out via the very shaky Indiana Jones rope bridge over the Chasm which possibly represents the boundary between the world of the living and the world of the dead, which is kind of crumbling or shifting, which is probably not good? But what is good is that I totally suspect Kihrin can get her out, though whether the consequences of doing that will be good I cannot tell you.
Also, Gadrith was/is Relos Var’s unwitting pawn, everyone who’s shocked raise your hands, okay no one, that’s what I thought. I hope Mr. I’mma Split My Brother’s Soul in Twain and also Kill Him is happy he managed to do it by proxy. Asshole.
Also also, this is kind of hilarious for some reason:
“I won’t remember when I wake. Neither of us will.”160
160 I know: if Kihrin does not remember what happened to him while he was dead, how could I write of it? How could I even begin to speculate what happened to him in the Afterlife? It is, as I have mentioned, a result of my witchgift. Even if the knowledge and memories are not actively accessible, a deep-buried part of Kihrin does remember.
This raises so many questions I can’t even. Not least being the implication that Thurvishar got close enough to Kihrin on some later occasion that he was able to access “deep-buried” parts of Kihrin’s memories, and isn’t that interesting. It’s not like they were best buds (or even remotely on the same side, even) before this, so when does this memory-access between Thurvy and Kihrin happen, exactly?
GOOD QUESTION, ME.
(If it happens before the end of this book and I just didn’t remember, I will be a bit embarrassed.)
Chapter 86: Returning
[In which Kihrin is resurrected, and shit continues to happen.]
But at least Darzin is dead: huzzah! Ding Dong, the dick is dead! Good riddance to very psychotic rubbish, sez me.
So, upside: Kihrin killed Darzin, as is right and proper. Downside: Kihrin doesn’t remember anything about being dead or being a god or being a whatever to Janel/Elana, all of which strikes me as important information he’s probably going to need real soon now.
And, upside: Teraeth is particularly ineffectual in this chapter which fills me with schaedenfreudenly glee, but downside: Thurvishar is as yet still compelled to act against them even though he clearly doesn’t want to, which leads to biggest downside: Gadrith shows up. Yuck, we hate that guy.
I love that of all the questions he must have for Thurvishar before Gadrith arrives, Kihrin chooses to ask about his apparent age. Like, dude, really? That’s what you want to know about? But then, Thurivshar is gaeshed, so Kihrin knows he’s sharply limited in what he can and cannot talk about. So I guess Kihrin was just chatting for fun until Mr. The Body Thief got there.
And now that Kihrin has to face Gadrith and Thurvishar together, What Will Happen??!?!? Only next week knows! Come on back then for more!