I Really Can't Remember Who Any of These Characters are Anymore: Allegiant Chapters 9 & 10

Ug two Fourbias POV chapters. Guess I’m in charge of all the menfolk this week! [Matthew says: This week on BBGT, women take over, feminism wins, all men murdered by their womanly fire breath and lightning magic. That’s what feminism is, right? I’ve been spending a lot of time on Twitter lately.]

Allegiant Chapter 9: Fourbias

This chapter is a mere 6 pages according to my Kindle app. Literally all that happens is that Fourbias takes Tris somewhere private and asks her what she wants to do about Caleb being on trial.

“Tris.” I set my hands on the wall on either side of her face and lean into them. “You don’t want him to die. I know you don’t.”

“The thing is . . .” She closes her eyes. “I’m so . . . angry. I try not to think about him because when I do I just want to . . .”

“I know. God, I know.” My entire life I’ve daydreamed about killing Marcus. Once I even decided how I would do it—with a knife, so I could feel the warmth leave him, so I could be close enough to watch the light leave his eyes. Making that decision frightened me as much as his violence ever did.

“My parents would want me to save him, though.” Her eyes open and lift to the sky. “They would say it’s selfish to let someone die just because they wronged you. Forgive, forgive, forgive.”

“This isn’t about what they want, Tris.”

“Yes, it is!” She presses away from the wall. “It’s always about what they want. Because he belongs to them more than he belongs to me. And I want to make them proud of me. It’s all I want.”

I can completely understand that since her parents died she’d want to honour them by saving her brother or at the very least not want everyone in her family to die. I don’t understand, though, saying that it’s always been about what they want because that’s so untrue. [Matthew says: I mean, I can get Tris’s “I want to make them proud of me” angle, but it is weird that it somehow turned into “It’s always about what they want”. Like, somehow the first is a normal (and nice!) “I miss my loved ones and want to do right by them”, but the second is more of a “GOD. MOOOOOOM.” Which is a strange way to honor the dead.]

Anyway, Fourbias says he’s going to save Caleb tomorrow, and then Tris and Fourbias proceed to make out.

Allegiant Chapter 10: Fourbias Again

Back in Four’s head, we get the most flowery description of feet that I never needed:

I used to run all the time and fight all the time because I cared about muscles. Now my feet have saved me too often, and I can’t separate running and fighting from what they are: a way to escape danger, a way to stay alive.

I do not fucking care about how the dramatic changes in your life have affected your feelings about running and fighting, Fourbias. I cannot stress that enough.

For some reason suddenly Fourbias injects himself with a serum so he can get into his fear landscape. Why the hell is this happening? I think I’m in my fear landscape right now writing a post where it’s all Fourbias’ point of view and we will never ever escape serums and fear landscapes even when they are coming out of absolutely nowhere.

I don’t know what I will see next.

I wait for a long time without anything changing. The room is still dark, the floor still cold and hard, my heart still beating faster than normal. I look down to check my watch and discover that it’s on the wrong hand—I usually wear mine on my left, not my right, and my watchband isn’t gray, it’s black.

Fourbias’ greatest fear is that one day he’ll realize his watch is on the wrong hand. [Matthew says: Maybe he only has four fears because the others all died of boredom.]

But actually he looks in a mirror and sees that he’s Marcus, so I guess his real fear is that some sort of Freaky Friday situation will occur when they both reach for the same piece of Dauntless chocolate cake and they’ll swap bodies, but then realize it’s actually super hard to be one another! They’ll encounter wacky situations along the way and ultimately reach a heartwarming resolution.

cryptkeeper

In decidedly un-Freaky Friday fashion, Fourbias/Marcus winks at himself in the mirror and then starts choking himself. Because one should always remember to wink at themselves in the mirror before choking oneself ~ Emily Post.

All Four has to do to get himself out of this situation is to, “imagine my reflection as water running over Marcus’s skin, replacing every piece of him with a piece of me. I remake myself in my own image.” So that was resolved very quickly.

In case any of this was at all ambiguous (it wasn’t), Veronica Roth saves you the trouble of interpreting anything yourself

I was still afraid of him, I knew, but in a different way—I was no longer a child, afraid of the threat my terrifying father posed to my safety. I was a man, afraid of the threat he posed to my character, to my future, to my identity.

Or OR Freaky Friday. 

ruininglife

The next fear features Tris coughing up blood and Four trying to save her, but he can’t. Then he comes out of the fear landscape, which raises the question: wasn’t that only two fears?

After abruptly leaving his fear landscape, Fourbias goes to rescue Caleb from his cell. It’s absurdly easy because he just reminds everyone that he’s Evelyn’s son and they’re like, “Right this way, sir, please do kill this prisoner if that’s what you wish to do. I’ll just give you some privacy.”

Zeke helps Fourbias slip away with Caleb, and Zeke gets a really long goodbye scene, which is completely lost on me given I can barely remember who he is or why this is significant:

“I probably won’t be seeing you again, will I? I mean, I know the others might come back, but you . . .” He trails off, but picks up the thought again a moment later. “Just seems like you’ll be happy to leave it behind, that’s all.”

“Yeah, you’re probably right.” I look at my shoes. “You sure you won’t come?”

“Can’t. Shauna can’t wheel around where you guys are going, and it’s not like I’m gonna leave her, you know?” He touches his jaw, lightly, testing the skin. “Make sure Uri doesn’t drink too much, okay?”

It’s hard to feel sad that Fourbias might not see Zeke again, and it’s even harder to be impressed by Zeke’s generosity (?) by staying with Shauna (who?), or to be concerned about Uriah’s drinking (is that an issue?) [Matthew says: Even if Uriah’s drinking is suddenly an issue now, aren’t they still wandering into an empty wasteland with no clear idea where civilization even is? Much less liquor stores?] But the book tries really hard for us to believe it’s a significant scene:

I know I should leave, but I have to stay in this moment for a little while, feeling its significance. Zeke was one of the first friends I made in Dauntless, after I survived initiation. Then he worked in the control room with me, watching the cameras and writing stupid programs that spelled out words on the screen or played guessing games with numbers. He never asked me for my real name, or why a first-ranked initiate ended up in security and instruction instead of leadership. He demanded nothing from me.

After summing up an entire, allegedly meaningful friendship in five lines, Fourbias hugs BFF Zeke, and they make some lame, typical teenage boy jokes like, “Bye sweetie.” Adorbs. But really, did we even know they were that close before this moment? Did we care? More importantly, were were supposed to care? Zeke is no Fernando, that’s for sure.

Fourbias takes Caleb to the train station, and takes this moment to wax poetic about train jumping and also answer our questions about who operates the trains:

I see the train coming from a long way off, making its last journey through the city. Once, the trains were a force of nature to me, something that continued along their path regardless of what we did inside the city limits, something pulsing and alive and powerful. Now I have met the men and women who operate them, and some of that mystery is gone, but what they mean to me will never be gone—my first act as a Dauntless was to jump on one, and every day afterward they were the source of my freedom, they gave me the power to move within this world when I had once felt so trapped in the Abnegation sector, in the house that was a prison to me.

I would like a comprehensive list of what the factionless are responsible for, because operating trains doesn’t seem like a shitty enough job to be delegated to them. How are jobs determined in this society, damn it.

After jumping on the train, Fourbias and Caleb reunite with Tris and Caleb finds out he’s not headed to his execution, but is actually going outside the fence with them. Tris and Four talk about how they’re ready to leave the city behind them. Me too, you guys!

Does anyone think the book is going to get more interesting now that they’re going “outside the fence”?

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