Chapters The Hunted Hunters, Saphira's promise
Roran and Baldor (one of Horst's sons) go hunting. While this is a lovely scene of rustic people trying to survive and make their way in the world, let us look at this logically for a moment with the reset of the data we have about Carvahall and Horst. Horst is, from what we've been able to tell, the richest person in Carvahall. He has a large two story house and plenty of money, after all in the first book, he was able to pay for Eragon's meat. There is also a butcher in Carvahall. Sloan, if we will all recall. So, if there is a butcher with meat in town why would they need to go hunting? Why plot contrivance of course! Roran and Baldor need to discover that the King's men are near by with the Ra'zac. That's pretty much the entire point of the chapter.
Roran is furious about seeing them and thinks, "Why did Galbatorix countenance my father's torture". Since when do ignorant farm boy who doesn't have a college education and probably doesn't know how to read think the word "Countenance"? I don't even know what countenance means.
After they discover this, Roran and Baldor go running back to the village after figuring that the soldiers are after Roran. After all they were after Garrow and Eragon so they must be after him when they probably don't even know he exists. Of course, the entire village wants to help Roran because he's just that wonderful of a person. And of course they have to fight the evil empire. Because it's evil and the king is evil. So we must fight against him.
Roran escapes into the woods of the Spine and hides. The soldiers make camp outside the village but they don't say why they're there. Just that they're on the King's business. And they keep on asking questions about Eragon and Roran, of course.
Roran has become the center of attention in Cavarhall. We haven't been given a reason for why the king is evil, once again. Roran once again believes that this is Eragon's fault. But it's okay because Eragon probably had a good reason for running off. Roran gains no personality or character in this chapter, he's just there to discover the soldiers and run away.
We then switch back to Eragon. Apparently he can't stand being out of the spotlight for long. We discover him oiling Saphira's saddle and trying not to overexert himself. Why is he trying not to overexert himself? The last time we checked effort doesn't set off his scar, it appears to happen randomly. He also hasn't been doing anything requiring effort. He's just been talking to people and cleaning things.
Dwarf comes in and tells him that the king of the dwarves wants to talk with him. Saphira is still able to go down the smaller corridors and not get stuck. Dwarf King tells Eragon that he can keep the armor that was given to him and Saphira. They talk about who is going to be the successor of the Varden and Dwarf King wants Eragon's opinion on it.
Then there's the matter of the Star Sapphire which is in utter rubble. The King Dwarf is very sad about the destruction of the stone. His "eyes grew mournful, deepening the surrounding lines that splayed like spokes on a wagon wheel" (page 48). This is a wonderful simile but it makes no sense in context and is completely distracting from the story. Paolini could have just stopped at deepening the surrounding lines. It's not even an action that requires a simile. But in an effort to be artistic, it's put down.
Saphira feels sorry about what she did, much to Eragon's surprise. "He sensed several emotions in her, but what surprised him most was her remorse and guilt. She truly regretted the Star Rose's demise, despite that it had been required." (page 49) Now, look at this. Earlier we learned that Eragon felt sorrowful that the stone had been broken, mourning just as deeply as the dwarves did. And he was also telling Arya that he and Saphira were one, "We share feelings, senses, thoughts, even to the point wherre we are more one mind than two." (page 27) Yet here he is, surprised that Sapphira feels similar. If they are so connected this shouldn't be a surprise to him. He should have just known it. Thus he disproves his claim that he and Saphira are one, by his own thoughts as opposed to his words. Eragon also gains another point towards sociopathy by thinking that you don't have to mourn the destruction of something if it was necessary to destroy it.
Then from the bag of Dues Ex Machina Saphira tells the Dwarf King that she would able to repair the stone if they manage to put it back together and not have a single piece missing. The Dwarf King says he can do that. I'm not really sure how that's possible. But the King is happy. Saphira apparently knows that she'll be able to do it, if the need is great enough. If that's not Dues Ex Machina, I don't know what is.
In an interesting turn of events, Ayra's involvement in the whole stone breaking is not at all mentioned. One would think that since it was really her fault the dwarves would be livid and want her out. After all this is like their oh so special stone, and they're mourning it. Yet they're not at all upset about this. Instead they're over joyed that maybe one day, if they get all the pieces together,they'll get their rock back.
Dwarf is enthusiastic about it and declares that there will be lots of drinking. Because that's how dwarves celebrate. They also bow down and kiss the ground by Saphira's feet when they hear the news of what she's going to do, maybe, if they find all the parts. They all get drunk. Even Saphira. I'm not sure what the point of this is.
But the dwarves have a good time dancing, singing and getting drunk. It ends with Saphira and Eragon passing out. So, that's the first time Eragon passes out. Though Eragon passes out not from drinking but because of a pain in his back. In any case the chapter ends with them both unconscious.
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