It's only a few months since Gregor and Boots returned from the Underland, leaving their mother behind to heal from the plague. Though Gregor's family receives frequent updates on her condition, they all know Gregor must return to fulfill his role as the warrior who is key to the Underlanders'... read more
Gregor's mother is still recovering from the Plague in the\ Underland hospital in Regalia. He and Boots make regular trips to visit with her and to spend time with Luxa, Hazard and the other Regalians, and it becomes known to Gregor that the other creatures of the Underland call human... read more (warning: may contain spoilers)
Gregor's mother is still recovering from the Plague in the\ Underland hospital in Regalia. He and Boots make regular trips to visit with her and to spend time with Luxa, Hazard and the other Regalians, and it becomes known to Gregor that the other creatures of the Underland call human Underlanders "killers", just as bats are called "fliers", or mice called "nibblers". His battle training with the gnawer (rat) Ripred continues. Gregor is still inexperienced when fighting in the dark, and he soon learns of a surprising turn of events involving Pearlpelt the Bane, the white rat whose life he spared at the conclusion of "Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane." Pearlpelt is now of adult size and considers himself an abused victim, despite the fact of his having killed his caretaker Razor over the carcass of a cockroach and having maimed two succeeding caretakers. Pearlpelt is now under Ripred's eye, as his personal student; yet the Bane resents Ripred and desires to be king of the gnawers.
While Gregor attends Hazard's birthday party, the nibblers (mice) send back the crown Luxa gave to them to send if they ever needed help, and Gregor realizes that he thinks Luxa is pretty. Gregor and Luxa try to find the nibblers, but find both of their colonies deserted. While in one, they witness a symbol, which greatly upsets Hazard. The symbol is part of an old code, "The Marks of Secret." The symbol means death for all who see it, and resemble a scythe. Ripred and Gregor saw it also, at the site where Luxa suspected the crown had been sent from. Gregor, Ares, Luxa, Aurora, Howard, Nike, Boots, Temp, Hazard, and Thalia (a young bat who was to bond with Hazard), go through the cavern system called Hades Hall to try to find the nibblers. In the Hall they witness the mass death of many nibblers, who were apparently driven off a ledge into a cavern. Here Luxa makes the "Vow to the Dead", promising she will avenge their deaths. They also choose to carve the mark of death on the wall. Here, they pick up Cartesian, the only nibbler to survive the fall. Word of the "Vow to the Dead spreads quickly, and Gregor realizes that Luxa has just declared war on the rats.
They learn that the Bane, now the rats' leader, is planning to annihilate the nibblers and they stumble across Ripred, whom the Bane had imprisoned. They free him and witness the death of many nibblers caused by toxic gas from a volcano. (Due to the charismatic nature of the speech delivered to the gnawers by the Bane, and the genocide of the mice by toxic gas, where the rats had told them they were only going to be resettled, this seems to be an allegory for the Holocaust). They realize that a child's song that was sung at the party is actually a prophecy left by Bartholemew of Sandwich. They name it "The Prophecy of Secrets". The volcano erupts, killing Thalia. Luxa and Ripred go to help the nibblers fight off the rats. Gregor goes to Regalia to warn the others of the oncoming war. The book ends with their mention of the 'Prophecy of Time' and a war starting. Gregor is prepared for the worst, and on Ripred's advice, takes Sandwich's sword from the Underland Museum, and knows it to be truly his for the fight ahead.
Throughout the book, Gregor's relationship with Luxa grows, and he begins to desire/cherish her. At the beginning, during Hazard's birthday party, he dances with Luxa, and starts to think she is pretty. Later, while the two were riding on a bat, Luxa laid her head on Gregor's shoulder for parts of the trip. Towards the end, Luxa asks Gregor why he is helping the nibblers, the mice never did anything that he would benefit from. Gregor replies that he's helping them because they had saved Luxa's life.
“What harm can it do, Howard? We are all past redeeming.”Luxa
“Temp is big. Temp is small. Temp is big. Temp is small.”Boots
life is short. There are only a few good things in it, really. Don’t pretend that one isn’t happening,”Highlighted by 192 Kindle customers
“My heart is so crowded already,” whispered Hazard. “But I’m sure the others will make room for Thalia. She is not a very big bat.”Highlighted by 120 Kindle customers
How exhausting it was to keep a secret, to hide a secret, to discover a secret, to know a secret existed and waited for you in the dark.Highlighted by 87 Kindle customers
It begins much more quietly. In a room, on a field, in a remote tunnel when someone who has power decides the time has come.Highlighted by 86 Kindle customers
“Did you indeed?” said Ripred. “It seems like only yesterday you were a baby bouncing on your grandpa’s knee. And now you’re starting wars. They grow up so fast.”Highlighted by 86 Kindle customers
GREGOR AND THE CODE OF CLAWHighlighted by 64 Kindle customers
At that moment two unexpected things happened. Gregor realized that he thought Luxa was pretty.Highlighted by 64 Kindle customers
“Temp! Temp! Look! Fo-Fo is here!” said Boots cheerfully. “I said, I am he called…oh, never mind,” said Photos Glow-Glow crankily.Highlighted by 61 Kindle customers
“And I don’t care if that makes you mad, Luxa. Get mad! Don’t talk to me! How will that be different from about ninety-five percent of the time, anyway? You’re always mad at me for something. Usually, I can’t even remember what! What’s it matter? I don’t live here. I’m just visiting. Anything that I’ve been doing to help you, that’s just a favor! Not something I owe you. And when we get back to Regalia, I’ll be sent home and we can forget we ever knew each other! Okay?”Highlighted by 57 Kindle customers
“They saved your life,” he said. And for just a moment, Luxa’s face softened and she smiled.Highlighted by 53 Kindle customers
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