Four and Tris Easily Run Around the Erudite Compound Because Everyone Here is Terrible at Their Jobs: Insurgent Chapter 32

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Insurgent Chapter 32

Last week, we discovered that Tris has been betrayed by her brother Caleb, unless everything is not as it seems or something. Who knows! Anything could happen in the wonderful, rich world of Insurgent! [Matthew says: Except possibly for things.]

Why did I never wonder how Eric and Jeanine knew that I had aptitude for three factions?

Why did it never occur to me that only three people in the world knew that particular fact: Tori, Caleb, and Tobias?”

Maybe you were so distracted by how boring and uninteresting that revelation was that you didn’t care to give it any further thought? That’s my excuse anyway. [Matthew says: My excuse is that I didn’t know I was supposed to care. Like, “she has an aptitude for multiple factions so she is DIVERGENT” is way easier to latch onto than “she has an aptitude for one more faction that most people with an aptitude for multiple factions so she is MORE DIVERGENT”. It’s got a little less oomph.] Hell, I can’t even remember Jeanine and Eric mentioning her aptitude for three factions (woah), but I’m sure it happened because this series never misses a chance to not only emphasize that Tris is Divergent, but to remind us that she’s the Divergentiest of them all.

Peter comes in to escort Tris to the showers, and their banter has transformed from vicious to almost playful?

“You brain-dead?” he asks.

“Don’t think so.”

“Don’t be so sure.”

“Ha-ha,” I say. “How long have I been asleep?”

“About a day. I’m supposed to escort you to the showers.”

“If you say something about how badly I need one,” I say tiredly, “I will poke you in the eye.”

…Poke you in the eye? That’s cute, I guess. Come on, Tris, you can do better than that. This is a prime opportunity to threaten to stab Peter in the eye as he did to Edward in the last book. [Matthew says: Actually, what’s weirder is that after Tris says that, the book doesn’t make any mention of how Peter did that, which is really weird, because usually this book misses no opportunity to tell us what it means.]

On the way to the bathroom, Tris spots Fourbias:

I can see where our paths will intersect, between where I stand now and my cell door. I stare, not at him but at where he will be when he reaches for my hand, as he did the last time we passed each other. My skin tingles with anticipation. For just a moment, I will touch him again.

Six steps until we pass each other. Five steps.

At four steps, though, Tobias stops. His entire body goes limp, catching his Dauntless traitor escort off guard. The guard loses his grip on him for just a second, and Tobias crumples to the floor.

I can’t fucking believe I was promised some chaste hand-touching, and instead I got a shitty action sequence. I feel so cheated! [Matthew says: Insurgent is the Divergent series’ Attack of the Clones.] And did anyone notice how it was at four steps that Four was able to break free? If you weren’t convinced that he deserved that name, now is the time to become a believer.

Four grabs a gun and runs off with Tris, but he’s not trying to escape. No, he’s trying to find something! I really hope it’s not a serum or anything to do with simulations. Maybe it’s like a plot!puppy he’s after. I’d be into that right now. Also, in case you were wondering if this was actually a simulation, Tris points out that it isn’t, so thank goodness I guess?

He stops abruptly, almost dropping me, as he reaches a wide hallway with panes of glass on either side, revealing offices. The Erudite sit frozen at their desks, staring at us. Tobias pays no attention to them; his eyes, as far as I can tell, are fixed on the door at the end of the corridor. A sign outside the door says CONTROL-A.

This sounds suspiciously like it’s going to have something to do with simulations. Man why can’t they be looking for more guns or just anything other than simulation-related nonsense!

Tobias searches every corner of the room, and then shoots at the camera attached to the ceiling on our right. The camera drops. He shoots at the camera attached to the ceiling on our left. Its lens shatters.

It’s weird that other than this camera, we don’t know what’s actually in the room. I have this image in my head of Tobias just running around an empty room looking carefully in every empty corner.

Because somehow no one has shown up yet – the security in this place sure isn’t what it used to be! – Tris and Four have a big discussion about why Four really turned himself in, choosing life over death, and secret plans. Seriously, they have more time to have a conversation right now than when they weren’t prisoners.

“I didn’t come here on some suicide mission,” he says. “I came for two reasons. The first was to find Erudite’s two central control rooms so that when we invade, we’ll know what to destroy first to get rid of all the simulation data, so she can’t activate the Dauntless’s transmitters.” That explains the running without escaping. And we found a control room, at the end of that hallway.

Yes, his explanation certainly did explain what just happened. Thank you for pointing that out, Tris. Your explanation of Four’s explanation explaining the explaining of the running without escaping. What would actually be super helpful is if you clarify what “control room” means in this context. [Matthew says: This is what I meant by that eye thing earlier.]

“The second,” he says, clearing his throat, “is to make sure you hold on, because we have a plan.”

“What plan?”

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“According to one of our insiders, your execution is tentatively scheduled for two weeks from today,” he says. “At least, that’s Jeanine’s target date for the new, Divergent-proof simulation. So fourteen days from now, the factionless, the loyal Dauntless, and the Abnegation who are willing to fight will storm the Erudite compound and take out their best weapon—their computer system. That means we’ll outnumber the traitor Dauntless, and therefore the Erudite.”

Sounds easy enough and like nothing could go wrong, I guess a third book the series was just a terrifying myth. [Matthew says: Wait, more importantly, one of their INSIDERS? This sounds like some seriously important information to just gloss over it! Why don’t we know more about the Dauntless spies inside Erudite? This seems like the sort of thing that would be constantly influencing the events of this story!]

“But you told Jeanine where the factionless safe houses were.”

“Yeah.” He frowns a little. “That is problematic. But as you and I know, a lot of the factionless are Divergent, and many of them were already moving toward the Abnegation sector when I left, so only some of the safe houses will be affected. So they will still have a huge population to contribute to the invasion.”

I don’t really understand how being Divergent is directly linked to the factionless headed towards the Abnegation sector. Please explain in the comments if you can translate this for me. [Matthew says: It must be part of their master plan. I mean, they have active spies they haven’t told us about, so why the fuck not.]

Four tells Tris she has to make it through the next two weeks, and Tris starts whining about how she’s so tired and she doesn’t want to make it through or live anymore. At first I was really annoyed by Tris during this scene, because it was so whiny.

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At first, this is how I saw Tris.

But the more I thought about it, the more I actually like this bit:

“You have to. You have to survive this.”

“Why?” The question forms in my stomach and launches from my throat like a moan. I feel like thumping my fists against his chest, like a child throwing a tantrum. Tears cover my cheeks, and I know I’m acting ridiculous but I can’t stop. “Why do I have to? Why can’t someone else do something for once? What if I don’t want to do this anymore?”

On the one hand, I know it’s kind of like why the fuck did you come here, Tris? But when I thought about the fact that she’s a teenager, that she’s suffered really traumatic loss, that she thought she was doing something noble and necessary by turning herself in (even though it was actually a completely idiotic thing to do), she’s not a perfect heroine making the best decisions all the time. She’s human and tired and doesn’t want to do it anymore, but also is too stubborn and brave in a lot of ways to just call it quits and kill herself. I think in a lot of ways we have to give Tris some credit for just not being Zoey Redbird, you know?

Really, walk with me here, Zoey has an affinity for ALL THE ELEMENTS, Tris has an affinity for MOST OF THE FACTIONS. Simulations are to Divergent as rituals are to House of Night. Tris could really easily fall into the Zoey trap of being like, “The elements will give me all of my answers in every situation! I have no plan but the elements/the goddess will bring the perfect plan to me no matter what the fuck I do.” At least Tris’ magical divergent affinity for factions (personality traits) doesn’t lead her to the perfect answer or solution every fucking time. [Matthew says: Most of the time. Tris does have a tendency to walk into a scene, then try to figure out why she walked into it. But at least that’s more so a sin of convenience than it is “EVEN THE VAMPIRE GODS ARE ON HER SIDE”, which is a little more grating.]

What does confuse me is this:

And what this is, I realize, is life. I don’t want it. I want my parents and I have for weeks. I’ve been trying to claw my way back to them, and now I am so close and he is telling me not to.

Tris left her parents to be in a different faction, expecting never to see them again. I know that’s different from knowing they were dead, but this to me doesn’t justify her suicidal thoughts/death wish. If she had stayed in a faction she hated just to stay with her parents that she was so close to, I’d buy this a lot more.

Four gives Tris some words of encouragement, and then the traitor Dauntless/Erudite show up to do their damn jobs and get these assholes back to their cells.

What do you guys think about Tris’ death wish? It doesn’t make me like the books or anything, but after giving it some thought it at least makes her more interesting to me than a lot of the heroines we read about here.



  1. Bellomy Reply

    Can I just point out AGAIN how stupid the faction system is?

    They make a distinction here between factionless and divergent, but SERIOUSLY WHAT IS IT. Not only that, how does it exist if you can pick what faction you want to be in anyway? I guess people want to be factionless, which would be an awful twist as it’s ludicrously obvious, since you can literally just DECIDE NOT TO BE. Just like Tris picked what faction to belong to, because her divergence is completely irrelevant to everything.

    As for the death wish, it would be quite interesting indeed if I believed any of the reasons Roth is desperately trying to foist on us for its existence. But I don’t, so I’m just rolling my eyes.

    • 22aer22 Reply

      Never feel you have to ask if you can point out how stupid the faction system is. The answer is always yes.

      From my understanding, you definitely can choose to be factionless, you can be exiled if you fuck up and they don’t kill you, or if you fail initiation (like with Dauntless initiation) you get kicked out and become factionless like in Edwards case.

    • 22aer22 Reply

      It’s weird, I flew through the first book in the series, but this one I have no desire to read ahead at all because it’s so dull! I’ve heard spoilers about the end, and I’m excited to get to all that because it’ll be something more interesting to write about for a change 🙂


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