The Obelisk Gate, chapters 9 & 10
We hear the tale of the near-destruction of Jekity last Season. Jija heals from his harpoon wound and is accepted into Jekity. Nassun meets the other orogene children in Found Moon, including Eitz (from the coastal comm in chapter 3). Schaffa and Nassun discuss her pre-Rifting upbringing. This includes Fulcrum-style orogeny training and Essun testing Nassun's control by breaking her hand. They discuss the thing in Schaffa's head; it causes him pain, which can be eased by something from and orogene. Schaffa confirms that what's in his head is different from the other Guardians, and they'll kill him if they know about it.
Alabaster tells the story of how Antimony took him to Corepoint, a city on the other side of the world inhabited by stone eaters and with a hole that goes very, very deep. The stone eaters have been in the city for a long time and there are a lot of them. Alabster tells Essun the stroy that Antimony told him, that the obelisks were created to boost orgoeny and something went wrong to eject the moon. Alabaster says that Father Earth is a sentient being, not a metaphor. Alabaster says there are three sides in the conflict: Humans and stone eaters, Father Earth, and another. Neither Alabaster nor Antimony say who the third side is, but it's perhaps related to what Alabaster found at the bottom of the shaft. Antimony wants Essun to channel the energy of the Rift through the obelisks to capture the moon.
- Has your opinion of Essun's parenting changed after reading this chapter and what Essun did to her daughter?
- Why did Schaffa name his complex "Found Moon" and why site it here?
- What is the third side in the war?
- The Shattering took place a long, long time ago. Why have it so many thousands of years ago?
- Essun and Nassun are much more powerful than most feral orogenes, but no more powerful than Fulcrum-bred ones. Why are they the chosen ones for this story, but not some Fulcrum orogenes?
- Jemisin continues to slowly dole out the backstory exposition. (At least this chapter wasn't interrupted by a bowel movement.) Is the pacing good for the book? What else are we learning about the wider world apart from the basic facts of Alabaster's story?