Summary (Spoiler Alert on high)
The shadow guys have locked down that Ender’s siblings are trying to rule the world and do not seem very concerned about it.
Valentine is hanging out when Graff comes and picks her up. He takes her to Ender, who is hanging out by a lake. Ender has built a raft. He and Valentine hang out on the raft in the lake and talk. In the end, seeing her allows Ender to go to Command school with an okay mind. Sorta.
Then they blow all our minds. They ship out to the Command School which is in a location so secret that the guy that gave them a lift is now a permanent resident whether he likes it or not. Then Ender is told that the humans are not waiting for the buggers to invade, but to invade the buggers. Seems they sent ships out decades ago and are about to make it there to kick some alien butt.
I know. I fucking know. I guessed wrong. I thought they were gonna be invading Russia or something, not another galaxy. But let’s back up a bit.
First of all, it seems that Val and Peter have amassed a huge following, like global defining kind of followings, and the shadow men are just “whatever” about it. Isn’t that the kind of global thing they should be worried about? This does not seem like the most stable of utopia’s to let two kids, brother and sister of the dude they are resting the future of the human race on just hang out and influence global policy. Especially when you have admitted these kids have the same abilities as The One, but were too emotionally unstable for the job of The One. That’s just not right on at least five levels. That’s like saying Neo in the Matrix had a brother but he was a little too power hungry so you let him run Germany and whoops.
As much as I enjoy Val, I really dislike her ambivalence. This is peace keeping on a whole other level. This power seems to be going to her head to the point where she forgot that she was doing the writing to stop a vicious sociopath from continuously threatening to murder her, then she keeps pissing him off. Bad things can only come from this.
Her talk with Ender is equally heartbreaking. The way he has become hard and changed, pulling away from her. I mean, just the passage where she goes to tickle him and he grabs her hand before realizing what she’s doing:
“Oh, yes,” he said, “You used to tickle me.”
“Not any more,” she said, taking back her hand.
Their relationship is just dead. And the deadness hurts, the woodenness of it. This story is almost Pinocchio in reverse, watching a real boy become a soulless block of wood used to batter back the invading horde for the good of the village. And that’s why she’s here. To show him how much he has changed. To show him that the connection they share, however lessened, is still there. To show him that there’s something worth being dead over.
And that’s just messed up.
Then we learn that, oh yeah, we are not waiting on an invasion. We are the invasion and you have about 5 years before we kick the hell out of the intergalactic hornet’s nest. What the fudge? Who’s plan was that? Send out the ships and let’s hope we find somebody to lead them. You must be crazy to dream up that kind of plan.
But, as we have seen, crazy wins battles. Crazy tends to win wars. Let’s just hope they have not pushed Ender too far into the crazy pants that he outgrows them, huh?
I am not even gonna get into the part where essentially they tell the space cab driver, “Thanks for the lift, now get in the damn house and stay there. You live with us now.”
- Say you were Neo’s dumber brother. What would you do with your reality bending powers?
- If you had a syndicated column, would you use it to make money? Click on the Amazon banner at the bottom of the page and buy something for “yes,” and also for “no.”
- Have you had a moment with a sibling or friend where you tried to reconnect but could not? Did it happen on a raft? Did you build the raft? Did you draw up plans for that or just kinda tie a bunch of sticks together?
- If you were a space cab driver, what would you hang from your space rearview mirror? Fuzzy dice?