Feyre wakes up in Rhysands arms and they stare at each other for awhile, and she realizes she would be content to do that forever. You’d think after everything that happened with Tamlin, Feyre would maybe, I don’t know, not go from, “Maybe I’ll hook up with Rhys? Maybe I like him?” to “FOREVER????” in under a minute.
Abruptly, Feyre asks why Rhys made the deal to see her one week for every month. Good morning to you too, Feyre.
His violet eyes shuttered.
And I didn’t dare admit what I expected, but it was not, “Because I wanted to make a statement to Amarantha; because I wanted to piss off Tamlin, and I needed to keep you alive in a way that wouldn’t be seen as merciful.”
Rhys is obviously just butthurt that Feyre said she wanted to have fun with him last night and didn’t confess her undying love. Wow. Can you imagine if Rhys had just been like, “Hey, I actually don’t feel that way. Is that really all you want?” rather than being a passive-aggressive turd about it?
The weirdest thing is, I’m not criticising all stories where a character doesn’t express their feelings…a lot of times I love this kind of angst. But what bugs me goes back to Matthew’s criticism from last week. Rhys is so strategic about when he’s completely honest and straightforward with Feyre. It’s so selective and manipulative. If he’s honest now he might not get the upper hand, so instead he opts to try to get under Feyre’s skin a different way.
It’s also partially because this shit is both super rushed (“FOREVERRRRR!!”) and moving at a glacier’s pace and I can’t anymore.
The day is tense and full of going to forest clearings where Feyre practices her powers – seriously what the fuck is happening in the story right now? – and eventually when Rhys is flying Feyre somewhere else he says there’s another story he needs to tell her. Before he can, they’re attacked!!!!
Failed, because those were ash arrows through him. Through his wings. They’d tracked us— yesterday, the little magic he’d used with Lucien, they’d somehow tracked it and found us even so far away—
Rhys flung out his power. Too late.
Arrows shredded his wings. Struck his legs.
Oh no! Now Rhys will never get to tell another emotionally manipulative story designed to get what he wants from Feyre! WHY DIDN’T HE FLING HIS POWER SOONER WHATEVER THE FUCK THAT MEANS?
Feyre manages to use one of her many many powers to break their fall with a shield. I’m honestly surprised she didn’t make a trampoline out of darkness or something.
It’s dark and Feyre hears spooooky sounds in the forest as she tries to search for Rhys.
Every hair on my body rose.
We never stayed out here past sunset. I took steadying breaths, nocking one of my few remaining arrows into my bow.
Wait when did she have a bow with her? What about her millions and millions of special powers?
I unstrung my bow. Any bit of light might give me away.
Well that was…short-lived.
It was not hot anger that poured through me.
But something ancient, and frozen, and so vicious that it honed my focus into razor-sharpness.
And if I wanted to track him, if I wanted to get to the spot I’d last seen him … I’d become a figment of darkness, too.
This series has the strangest effect where the more times I re-read the books the less sense any of it makes to me. Like it works if I read it in a few hours without stopping and my brain isn’t fully processing, but when I’m carefully reading each chapter it just endlessly baffles me.
Feyre winnows through the trees and doesn’t look at “the things prowling on the forest floor” because fuck the world building, she needs to find Rhys!
Eventually she tracks him down, being dragged into the mountains by enemies who have split into two groups to try to throw Feyre off. But Feyre has a secret weapon on her side:
I weighed my options, smelling the two paths.
They hadn’t counted on the small, second scent that clung there, entwined with his.
I didn’t let myself think about the fact that my scent was on Rhys, clinging to him after last night. He’d changed his clothes that morning— but the smell on his body … Without taking a bath, I was all over him.
Yup. The whole rescue plot hinges on the fact that they hooked up the night before and haven’t bathed yet. This isn’t the book we wanted, you guys. It was the book we needed.
Feyre finds Rhys being whipped in a cave, and Feyre murders everyone. She makes a point of telling us how much she loves it unlike how she felt when she was killing the Fae for her final trial in the first book. That seems like a really weird thing to bring up right now in the heat of the moment, but sure, okay. Also, like, duh? These are two very different situations.
She goes to unchain Rhys and notices there’s something weird/different about these chains but isn’t sure what yet. After she frees him, she also is able to winnow him away and start removing all the arrows that are still in his wings.
I seriously can’t remember where all their friends are supposed to be or why they were alone in the forest now anyway? Especially after running into Lucien, you’d think Rhys wouldn’t have wanted to be so exposed.
To distract him, Feyre tells a story of how she bought paint when she was younger and painted things for her family.
Rhys’s voice was raw as he said to the floor, “What did you paint for yourself?”
I drew out the fifth, moving to the sixth before saying, “I painted the night sky.”
Oh my god. That can only mean one thing. NIGHT COURT FORSHADOWING, Y’ALL!
“I never knew why. I rarely went outside at night— usually, I was so tired from hunting that I just wanted to sleep. But I wonder … ” I pulled out the seventh and final arrow. “I wonder if some part of me knew what was waiting for me. That I would never be a gentle grower of things, or someone who burned like fire— but that I would be quiet and enduring and as faceted as the night. That I would have beauty, for those who knew where to look, and if people didn’t bother to look, but to only fear it … Then I didn’t particularly care for them, anyway. I wonder if, even in my despair and hopelessness, I was never truly alone. I wonder if I was looking for this place— looking for you all.”
If you had left in the first and last line that would have mostly made sense, but what is all that garbled nonsense in the middle?
Rhys thanks Feyre for saving him and doesn’t react at all to what she said, so we’re probably supposed to just know that inside he’s bursting with joy or something. He also tells Feyre that they were ambushed by Hybern soldiers. He’s the big bad of the series who you probably already forgot about. They have fancy ancient chains that can block magic. And now ya know.
Before Rhys passes out and ends the chapter, he tells Feyre that he was looking for her too.