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Messages - jwmeep

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For those interested, the page numbers where Kelsier communicates with Spook (I think, I could be wrong):

Pg. 407 - "You want to be like Kelsier? Really like Kelsier? Then fight when you are beaten!"

Pg. 408 - "I named you, Spook. You were my friend. Isn't that enough?"

Pg. 445- "And that's why you absolutely must get that message sent, Spook. The pieces of this thing are all spinning about, cast to the wind. You have a clue that nobody else does. Send it flying for me."


1.  It's an inside joke between them.  "Spook" means "Sneaky" or "Clever" in the street slang.  It was a compliment.  

This just gives me an even greater reason to like Kelsier.  You know Kelsier is one of my favorite characters, and one of the most frustrating parts of the series. When I finished Hero of Ages, I wasn't really sure how big of a part Kelsier played in it. Some of his greatest victories were either the will of Ruin (toppling the Final Empire,  destroying the Pits of Hathsin) or so small in the wider scope of the story (killing a single inquisitor.) He just made an impact on a minor part of the whole epic. I find myself wondering if Kelsier wasn't some great man, just another puppet of Ruin trying to do what he thought was the right thing, and was in all reality working to destroy everything.

 But after re-reading certain things I realized I was looking at the wrong things as "greatest" actions. Little things like Spook's name, are really what made Kelsier a good man. In an offhand way that no one else could understand, he told that kid he was worth something. "You are not abandoned, you are clever." Kelsier's biggest victories were the subtle ones. Making Spook and Vin understand their self worth, inspiring good men like Ham and Breeze to be great men. Giving a powerful legacy to those who followed. Like Elend. Even though Elend didn't accept Kelsier as a deity, in a way Elend was greater believer in Kelsier than Demoux was. Elend took strongly to things Kelsier talked about, and believed in trying to survive and being optimistic in the face of hopelessness even when Kelsier's own crew were shaken.

Kelsier's influence was more important in the grand scheme of the Mistborn series than his actual actions against the final empire, and I am content with that. Of  course finding out he didn't let a little thing like death slow him down, "borrowed" the power of a god, and helped steal victory from the jaws of Ruin helps too.  ;)

Perhaps this will help, however.  Like most of the leaders of soldiers in this series (Demoux, Wells, and Conrad included,) Goradel is based on and looks like one of my friends.  In this case, it's Richard Gordon.  He's read the book and cheered for his namesake's sacrifice and eventual victory.  So the REAL Goradel knows.  ;)

Yeah that helps. As did re-reading the part where Goradel volunteers to take the message. He promised to deliver the message or die trying. And he ended up doing both. I just find his character extremely compelling. If Goradel had met Kelsier in the palace, Kelsier would have killed him without a second thought, killing a traitor to his own people. Which Goradel admitted he was. But it was Vin he met, and that made all the difference. Instead of calling it even with helping to "rescue" Vin, he kept serving with a dedication and loyalty that would make Samwise Gamgee jealous. He died in a wasteland ash, his actions unknown to  all except the man who killed him. And yet he is still a hero whose actions helped save the world.  I guess it's kind of silly to for me to find a minor character so compelling, but take it as a compliment to your writing that even the minor characters can make an impact on your audience.

I'm a big fan of Brandon's work. This book is one of his best so far, and it really affected me.  Some parts had me in tears, others had me pacing around at midnight.

Might as well try my questions:

1: It seemed that Kelsier was fluent in Spook's street dialect, and even conversed with Spook in the dialect at one point. So I'm assuming  Kelsier knew what Lestibournes really meant, and being who Kelsier was, giving him a new name probably was more about building the boy up, rather than just the length. That said, why Spook? If he was trying to boost Spook's self confidence, why use a name like that?

2: Given that Kelsier seems be keeping an eye out for everything from the beyond, how does Kelsier feel about how every turned out? Has his opinion on Elend changed? How did he react upon learning Lord Ruler's true nature? I'm guessing this may be a RAFO situation, but I might as well ask.

3: A question about Goradel. His end was very tragic, and was one of the things that had me in tears. The thing that really twisted the knife into me, is that he died that horrible death thinking that he had failed. When everything he tried to survive failed, his final act was to try to prevent the message into falling into Ruin's hands, but even that was futile. With those who seem to be active in the great beyond, did Goradel ever find out about what his actions helped to bring about? Was he ever thanked for his actions?

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