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The Well Of Ascension Chapter 39-40

Child Bahkbar


Finally starting the fourth Part. It begins with one short chapter, followed by a really long one. I'm not complaining, though.

Part Four

Chapter 39

Tis chapter commences with Straff riding in carriage, and Zane walking alongside him. Straff is not at all pleased with the results of his sons' assassination attempt. Yes, I imagine that he was seething with impotent rage when he heard the news of their colossal failure.

Apparently those six allomancers were one third of his secret misting progeny. That means he has eighteen misting offspring? Including Elend and his other normal kids, this guy must have a small army of illegitimate children. He has indeed been a busy, busy man.

He knows that Zane did not participate, but he, as of yet, does not know why. Did Zane betray him? As he watches Zane argue with himself against spontaneous murder, he wonders what he's gotten himself into. What indeed.

When Straff brings up the fact the Vin will have his head now that she knows that he tried to have Elend assassinated, Zane says she too clever to believe that. It sounds crazy, but he's probably right. Vin must know that if Zane wanted her and Elend dead, they would be.

Straff's procession reaches their destination. He's come out here, very near to the Luthadel walls, to meet up with his old friend, Lord Penrod. What a shock. Penrod is planning on handing the city to Straff? That's how he got the merchants to vote for him. Straff offered the greedy, power hungry curs an even better offer than Cett did.

It would seem, from the way he's acting, that Penrod has the city's best interest at heart. I thought he was smart, but apparently I was wrong. He knows that Straff can't be trusted, as they've apparently been "buddies" for a good long time now. Why would he offer the city to Straff, knowing that he'll just be stabbed in the back sooner of later?

Also, to be honest, this doesn't seem to be much of "friendship" to me. All I see is Straff trying to make Penrod into an obedient mutt. He acts like a complete prick to Penrod, and, from the looks of things, their relationship has always been this way.

Anyway. To his shame, Straff is too craven to accept Penrod's offer and enter the city. Despite the fact that Vin would never take action against him if he took Luthadel "legally", he refuses to make a move until she is dead, and he must rely on Zane for that, which terrifies him even more.

Once their revelatory meeting is finished, Straff rudely dismisses Penrod. Shortly afterwards, Zane leaps from the shadows, and shortly after that, he reveals that he has poisoned Straff. Again. He acts like he's awed by how Straff always somehow always seems to catch his little ploys. Little does he know that Straff actually didn't catch the poison this time. As soon as Zane runs off, Straff desperately rushes back to his camp. To Amaranta.

Straff makes it back in the knick of time, and Amaranta obediently begins brewing her magical cure-all. What hold does he have over her? I mean, she doesn't seem very happy to be here, and she isn't a skaa slave, so why doesn't she just leave? Is the pay that good?

Anyway, as the antidote begins to take effect, Straff makes a hard decision. Zane must die... Okay... Does he have a plan? How exactly will he go about killing one of the most skilled Mistborn alive? Besides, he needs him. How is he ever going take care of Vin without Zane? He doesn't seem to have thought this whole thing through.

End of Chapter 39

Kwaam says that Alendi's appearance just seemed too... convenient. he wrote that it was almost as if they constructed the Hero themselves, instead of allowing him to "arise naturally." Well, that makes about as much sense as anything else he's written. Oh, wait, no it doesn't.

The Big Four-O

This chapter starts with Vin's perspective. It turns out her injuries weren't all that grievous, but Elend stayed by her bedside anyway, even though he now sees her for the "monster" she is. Is that really how Vin sees herself? She's no monster. The Inquisitors are monsters; She's just an overly protective mistborn who sometimes uses unnecessarily excessive force...and occasionally explodes heads.

When Vin takes note of his uniform, or, rather, lack of it, Elend lets her know about the results of the vote. He says that Penrod is a far better choice than he is anyway, that he should have put his support behind Penrod from the start, and that his arrogance could have landed them with Cett. Heh. If only he knew.

He goes on to say he must either admit that he was wrong to ever believe in the Assembly, or trust in their decision. Or he could, y'know, accept that the Assemblymen are only humans, and that they, imperfect humans that they are, will occasionally make huge mistakes. Such as deposing the only decent king this godforsaken city is ever likely to have.

Anyway, Elend seems pretty down, but when Vin reaches out to comfort him, he exhibits an infinitesimal flinch. Can you blame him for that? She exploded a mans head not two days ago. Not to mention that he almost died himself. The flinch most likely means nothing. He just needs some time to mentally recover, that's all.

Vin, as per usual, is reading a bit to much into his uncontrollable negative physical reaction to her touch. She's acting like this is it. It's all over. I suppose this explains why she's always keeping secrets from him. She actually believes that if he gets too close and sees the "real her", he'll leave her. Now he has seen her for what she is, and Miss Insecure has leapt at the first chance to give up all hope.

Elend sees the sorrow in her eyes, but he seems to think that she's disappointed by his failure. He says that they'll get through this and that she just needs some more rest.

This somehow brings Oreseur to Vin's mind. When she asks of him, Elend tells her that the kandra is digesting a new body. Ah, that's right! He attacked a human, broke his contract, and got himself brutally mutilated, all for her. If Oreseur can care so much for her, knowing "what she is", then why can't Elend? He's always known about what she does. Does she really think so lowly of him to believe that he'd abandon her after seeing her in action first hand?

Anyway, the conversation takes a turn, and they begin discussing more important, erm, less personal matters. After the events of the previous days, Cett has locked himself up in Keep Hasting, and now, as he's well and truly trapped, Elend hopes he'll be more willing to negotiate. I honestly don't see why he wouldn't be. He's obviously in no position not to at least consider Elend's first offer.

Straff, on the other hand, has been oddly silent. The assassins were blatant, which, according to Elend, isn't his style. That, and no one was able to identify the assassin's. Vin actually mentions that she recognized that last guy, but there's no hope of finding out who he was anymore.

Vin apologies for making him see...that, but Elend says it was nothing. He brings up the fact that he's seen death loads of times, unwisely using the Lord Ruler's executions as an example. He tries to correct himself, but the damage is done, and, unbeknownst to him, his compliments are only making it worse. Wow, this guy never fails to impress. Always opening his mouth and saying the wrong things at the worst possible times, he is.

Elend then brings her an admittedly drugged bowel of soup, and, after she willingly drinks it, leaves the room.

Vin awakens a few hours later to find Zane in the room. What a thing to wake up to. I imagine it must be somewhere in between waking up with a snake and waking up with "The King".

Anyway, Zane starts spouting his usual drivel. He says that the only reason she was injured at all is because she was too busy protecting the nobles. So what? Was she just supposed to let several of those mostly-innocent people be slaughtered? What kind of person would that make her?

What is this creep's game, anyway? When Vin asks him exactly this, he replies with some impressively smooth lies. He says that Straff fears her way too much to have sent those assassin's. Vin then recalls where she'd seen Mr. No Head before. He was in Cett's entourage--one of the serving men. Ah. That explains the peculiarities surrounding those guys. A clever ploy. A very clever ploy indeed. Zane seems to have really planned ahead.

Zane goes on to tell Vin of Penrod's plans, adding that oh-so important bit of truth to his fabrications. Vin has fallen for this lies, same as she always does: Hook, line, and sinker. Cett will be chin deep in proverbial excrement if Vin shares this information with anyone. Fortunately she seems to be rather adept at keeping important information from those who need it, so there's the chance that she won't tell a soul.

Zane says that he has no wish to see her or Elend dead, which is probably only a half lie, but I doubt he gives two big one's about what happens to Elend. He then proceeds to spill his soul to Vin. I'm using figurative speech, of course; Zane doesn't have a soul.

The madman says that he isn't Elend, but that's okay, because even though he sometimes wishes he were, he can never be like his brother. He says it's better that they never meet, as they don't belong together anyway, and neither does Vin. i.e, he's asking her to "be his woman."

He then leaves her, but before going, he hands her a gigantic bead of atium, telling her to be prepared for next time. Great...

The chapter feels like it should be over, but no, there's another short time skip, and we're right back to Vin. Some time has passed, but she is still in recovery. Oreseur comes to visit her today, and--what a surprise! He's still a dog. He gives some nonsense excuse for it, but its pretty clear that he rather enjoys being an animal.

Vin thanks him for breaking his contract to save her, but he says he didn't break it, he only slightly abused it. The contract never said they couldn't harm humans, only that they mustn't kill. Had he accidentally slain the man he attacked, he would have returned home for execution instead of sticking around here.

So kandra can die. Just not by any tools they have today, apparently. When Vin asks why they feared the Mistborn if they could not kill them, He says that they should change the topic. Vin expresses some dismay at being left in the dark about this, so, against his better judgment, Oreseur tells her more. Dumbass.

The Lord Ruler actually created them and the Koloss, and he carefully placed in the kandra a mechanism to keep them under control at all times. This "something" apparently involves Allomancy, and that is why the Kandra feared mankind. Well, info's out now.

Vin draws from this that the Lord used the power of the Well to create the kandra, and she assumes that the power must have ran out rather quickly, on account of his using armies to conquer instead of pure mystical energy. If that's the case, though, what makes her think that the Well has magically regained it's power all of a sudden? If it continuously regenerates over time, would the Lord Ruler not have been tapping into that power on a regular basis? If her theory is correct, the Well should be all but completely empty if and when she gets her hands on it.

Anyway, Vin proceeds to take Oreseur's information, his trust, and tries to use it to exploit his weakness.


What is this? I thought she was supposed to be his friend. Now she's experimenting on finding a way to control him? I know she's going through a difficult time, but this? This is totally unacceptable.

Vin gets no results at first, but instead of giving up she tries out her trusty duralumin, causing Oreseur to let out a dog-scream and go into convulsions for a few minutes. Vin immediately apologizes,terrible but it's to late. The damage has been done.

When he eventually recovers, he says that she is not to blame, that it's his fault for telling her in the first place, and leaves her to wallow in her own guilt and self loathing.

She does feel terribly guilty--as she should. He saves her life and trusted her with intimate, potentially damning, information about his kind, and she repays him with this? What if she had done something terribly wrong and damaged him beyond repair? What if he'd been exaggerating about not being able to be killed by allomancy, and her curiosity had cost him his life?


End of chapter 40

Kwaan writes that he began to see other issues with Alendi after his previous revelation. Awesome. Will he ever tell us what they were? I doubt it.


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I've got to say, I love seeing your viewpoint as you read the Well of Ascension, with all of your guesses. It's really amusing and very nice to remember. Thank you for taking the time to do this.

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Thank you for putting up with me, and for taking the time to read and comment. It's been good fun so far.

Yeah, it must be pretty hysterical reading some of my assumptions when you know exactly what's going on. Heck, once I'm done with the book, I'll probably have a laugh or two at how far off base some of my guesses were...unless they turn out to be spot on...

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