Eldest Chapters 69 & 70

Sorry about the late post. Internet troubles strike again.

These chapters are called ‘eldest’ and ‘inheritance’.

Eragon is shocked and not by all the senseless killing going on around him. No, he’s shocked that Roran accuses him of being responsible for killing Garrow and not being over it already. He only lost his father because you happened to stumble upon the biggest plot coupon ever plopped down on Alagaësia, Eragon. I can’t imagine why he’d resent that. Not to mention you don’t seem all that bothered by the death of your uncle. Sure it started you on the path but old Garrow gets less mention than your bowel movements.

Being as war is one of those pesky things that moves with the inexorable slowness of glaciers, Eragon takes a moment to have a break. He stops by the dwarves and has a chat with the king who notices Spahira is still wearing her armor. Then they stop and compare the latest in chainmail accessories and laugh at all the soldiers who bought their armor off the rack at some retail store, the cheap bastards.

The tide turns officially this time because the dwarves actually get involved. Imperials go crazy and some defect or runaway or just surrender. Flaming javelins get launched from the ship into the crowd of soldiers. Then some drums start beating and a dragon shows up because why use your most powerful weapon when it can gather dust like a properly sealed action figure locked away in the attic.

This dragon is red, so it’s not Shruikan, and is all spiky and murderous looking. Eragon assumes that Gabby got one of the dragons to hatch for him. The rider of this dragon, who remains nameless and undescribed because it’s not Gabby, launches some evil, because it’s red, light at the dwarf king who dies of a heart attack. Eragon kills a horse, who’s already dying so it’s okay, to restore him and Saphira to fighting form and attack.

Eragon and the unnamed rider play a game of flying chicken and crash into one another. The red one is smaller than Saphira but strong and they snap at each other like puppies playing about. They each breathe fire at each other in turn and each rider turns it harmlessly away. A pity Eragon couldn’t have gotten a look at this other rider and told us what he looks like or who it is. Oh and two imperial magicians who are stronger than any other appear on the battlefield and start killing Varden magicians.

I’m going to wager a guess that it’s the ‘twins’ on the ground and Murtagh on the red dragon. Why? Because they found scraps of clothing but not the bodies. Whenever someone wants to create the illusion of death the just toss an old sweater off to the side and vanish entirely.

Eragon jumps from the saddle and slashes at the red dragon before Saphira catches him. They fight on the way down to the ground then land. The other rider gets down and heals his dragon quickly and with a short spell. Then they engage in swordplay while the two dragons make an impromptu ring. The battle come to a halt as everyone stops to watch this pay per view event unfold live right before them. Some of the more enterprising Varden start barbecuing the dead and selling the meat to everyone who’re too busy watching to notice.

Gee, it seems like the other rider can anticipate his every move and wears Eragon out. Then the other rider does a little flourish that Eragon recognizes and he throws himself at Murtagh. Or he pulls off the helmet and reveals that yes it’s Murtagh.

The next chapter opens with Murtagh standing there attempting to be villainous or some such. The image I get is of a character that’s gotten a little exhausted from humoring his creator and would really like a cold beer and a lie down.

Eragon claims he saw Murtagh die and he only saw darkness when he scryed for the idiot. To be fair, Eragon, you only tried once and you never saw the body. Under the heading of stupid plot twists that means he was practically guaranteed to be alive. Eragon accuses Murtagh of being a traitor.

“I had no choice!” snarled Murtagh. “And after Thorn hatched for me, Galbatorix forced both of us to swear loyalty to him in the ancient language. We cannot disobey him now.”

So he’s not really evil, just under a sort of mind control. And he claims he was taught powerful magic that the elves don’t dare to use. Yes, now he can throw lightning from his hands and wear a really sweet black cloak. Eragon says it’s magic that shouldn’t be used. Then why is it there, Eragon? If the gray people who made magic the way it is allowed for it then there must be a reason or am I, once again, thinking this through more than the original author?

Oh and they stand there while Roran kills the ‘twins’. It’s done with no ceremony and they both die without names. More poor characters fed to the poor writing of a hack.

Then they get back to ‘fighting’ after arguing. Eragon says if Murtagh can’t disobey Gabby then he should let Eragon kill him to save lives. Murtagh says ‘no’ and reveals Gabby’s plan which is to rebuild the riders and he needs a female dragon. The third, and unhatched egg, is male, making Saphira the potential mother of all future dragons.

Eragon can’t compete with Murtagh’s magic and he gives up. Murtagh almost kills him but doesn’t and doesn’t take him back alive for some reason. I thought you couldn’t disobey Gabs, Murtagh? He takes Eragon’s sword, reveals that they’re brothers and takes off. ‘That’s not true. That’s impossible!’ ‘Search your feelings, you know it’s true.’ ‘Wait, doesn’t this feel familiar?’ ‘It does, almost like it’s already been done.’ ‘Ah well, why stop now?’

Because the ‘twins’ are dead and Murtagh has lost interest, the battle turns around and the Varden win. Eragon cries because he lost his personal battle. Gee, I feel so bad for you Eragon. Here, have this refreshing tonic that smells of bitter almonds. Drink it down fast and go have a nap.

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5 Responses to Eldest Chapters 69 & 70

  1. maeverin says:

    wow, something kinda…y’know…happened there.

    and for something so rare like dragons and dragon riders–they seem to keep popping up.
    Murtagh should have been revealed to be Eragon’s brother in the first book. that would have made this meeting a lot more bittersweet, i think.

    • vivisector says:

      And it would have made the reveal a little less clunky and rushed. Then again I’m sure Chris had no idea until the last couple of chapters.

  2. Wasn’t Galbatorix originally considered evil for destroying the dragons? Yet now he’s going to try and restore them. More anti-evidence that he’s evil.

    Fluffy, Spot and their kids are due to come back from their Twihard hunting trip next post. I think before they come back I’ll send their egg sac to an etymologist to find out what’s going on inside. I know a guy who can get the job done – he swears he can thoroughly investigate its insides without harming it. The results should be here in two posts.

    • vivisector says:

      I think it’s just more evidence the Gabby’s one of the good guys. He had to kill the other dragons because they were part of the elf power structure.
      And that gives me something to comment on about the Ra’zac coming up.

  3. Vanessa says:

    Internet problems, eh? Should get that checked out.

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