At long last, I have reached the sixth and final Part of the book, and I'm still at a loss as to what the end might have in store.
Part Six: Words In Steel
Kwaan instructed Rashek slay Alendi if he failed to mislead him. Clearly his attempts were unsuccessful, as Alendi could feel the Well thumping. Which also means that he must have know all along that Rashek was trying to mislead him...
It feels like it's been forever since Elend's last PoV, so I suppose it's only fair that he gets to start off the end of the book. He's still travelling with Lestibournes on the way to Luthadel. At night, because Vin told them to. It also doesn't hurt that they'll avoid running into strangers this way.
Spook is out scouting ahead, so Elend is completely alone in the thick mists. Even he has begun to notice that the mists are lingering in the daytime, so he feels more than a little uncomfortable being out in them right now. It doesn't help that he can't see a thing either. All those sounds that would seem perfectly ordinary in the day suddenly become extremely disconcerting, or just downright frightening, when darkness falls.
Elend thinks about what it must be like to be able to see through the mists the way Spook and Vin do. He also often wonders what it would be like to have any allomantic ability. Yes, he still seems to wish that he was born a Misting, but who, besides a Feruchemist, wouldn't? Even without allomancy, Elend has made a great many accomplishments in his short life, though, so he probably doesn't feel the lack as keenly as some others might.
Spook returns, asking Elend if he's seen anything. When Elend replies that he heard something, Spook slips away again to check it out. He returns shortly, saying that it's just a mist wraith. Elend has the same slightly irrational fear of the things as Vin did. Of course, that's completely understandable, as he's actually never laid eyes on one before. I doubt most noblemen have seen the things, though.
Spook also says that there's a light ahead. He believes it may be a village, or maybe an army, so he tells Elend to stay behind while he checks it out.
After Spook leaves, Elend is alone once again. Or is he? There's a Mist wraith out there, somewhere, and his growing discomfort serves as great company. The prospect of the mists lingering in the daylight--killing in the daylight, has him plenty on edge. Plus he's starting to see the logic in Vin's theory that the mists and the deepness are one and the same, and that frightens him even more. In the Mists, no one can hear you scream.
As Elend stares into the foggy abyss, the misty Death appears before him. The ethereal being takes a couple steps towards him, scaring him half to death, then points north. Elend actually turns to look, but he sees nothing. He beseeches the thing to tell him what it wants of him, but it simply points northward again.
There's something different about the creature this time. Unlike Vin, who experienced a terrifying sensation when she encountered it, Elend feels peace emanating from it. It's soothing him. I didn't even know it could use allomancy. It must have been soothing Vin as well, then, which begs the question: Why make Vin feel fearful, yet cause Elend to feel peaceful?
Also, as I recall, the creature tried to kill Vin, yet it hasn't made a move against Elend. It actually seems to be trying help him. Now that I think back, when Vin found it standing over his bed a few chapters back, it didn't draw it's blade until after she arrived. Clearly it has some beef with Vin, but, if that's the case, why is it still here in the first place? If Vin is who it's truly after, why did it not follow her when she went ahead to Luthadel?
Actually, now that I think about it, the mist spirit has never appeared when Elend isn't around. Is it possible that he is it's true target, and that it has only been trying to get Vin out of it's way all this time? What on earth would it want with Elend, though? Why direct him to go North?
Anyway, I suppose that's enough speculating for now. Back to the events at hand. The spectre dissolves into the mists when Spook returns. He asks Elend who he's been talking to, but Elend isn't entirely convinced that he isn't hallucinating, so he keeps his mouth shut.
Spook has news, though. The lights he went to check out weren't coming from an army or a village, but a refugee camp, and he wants Elend to come and check it out.
The refugees turn out to be from Terris. Ththingdwen, to be exact. I'm not even going to comment on how odd and unpronounceable that name is. In all, there are around a thousand men, women, and children in the camp. Elend is currently drinking tea with one of the older terrismen, who explains to him their current situation.
Shortly after the Synod came out into the open, Terris was attacked by Steel Inquisitors. The Inquisitors used koloss to attack the homeland and dealt with the Keepers themselves. The Terris people didn't stand a chance against them. Most, if not all, of the Keepers have been either slain or taken captive. With their home in ruins, the survivors had no choice but to flee to the South.
So that's where the Inquisition has been all this time. Why attack Terris, though? If they're just trying to act out the Lord Ruler's will, why did they bother taking the Keepers captive instead of just killing them? I suppose that's a question for another time. Or, more accurately, another book.
The old man asks Elend if he knows King Venture, and if he thinks he will take them in. It falls on Elend to deliver the grim news of Luthadel's likely fall. He doesn't tell the man who he is, though. Better safe than sorry, I guess. There's also the fact that telling the man would spur all kinds of difficult and embarrassing questions.
The old man also asks Elend if he knows Tindwyl. When Elend tells him where she was when he left, the old man gains some hope. Her survival would mean much to his people, as, with the rest of the Synod presumably dead, it would fall on her to be their leader. damnation. At least Sazed still lives, but who's to say he's even capable of leading anyone after all he's been through. The whole world is falling apart, and the deepness hasn't even fully manifested itself yet. What a mess.
Anyway, the old man grants Elend and Lestibournes permission to stay with them. Elend returns to Spook, who is currently sitting on a log, complaining about how the camp's bright fires are hurting his eyes and wasting wood. Holy crap! Really? Then why doesn't he turn off his tin, instead of squandering it like a freaking imbecile.
Spook, seeing the poor condition of the people in this camp, says that the world is starting to fall apart. They have no where to go, and the whole world seems to become more hostile each day. He's losing hope, but Elend firmly asserts that Luthadel has not fallen, and that they will rebuild.
Elend's confidence seems to cheer Spook up a bit, but Elend himself isn't even convinced by his own statement. He's ignored the ghosts, the deepness, and the even the Steel Inquisitors. What else? Well, he did completely miss the existence of his bastard misting siblings, but I suppose he wasn't to fault for that.
End of Chapter 56
Kwaan wrote that he hoped that, by some miracle, Rashek might succeed. It's apparent that he did, but how did he pull it off? Alendi had to have known not to trust him, and from the sound of things, the supposed Hero of Ages had survived much bigger threats than jumped up, envious packmen. What exactly did Rashek do? How did he succeed in doing what so many others failed to accomplish?