by Michael Scott
Fate and Free Will Quotes in The Alchemyst
How we cite our quotes: (Chapter.Paragraph)
"How did we ever get into this mess?" Josh wondered out loud.
"I guess we were just in the wrong place at the wrong time," she said. […] But even as she was saying the words, she was beginning to suspect that there was more to it than that. There was something else going on, something to do with the prophecy that Flamel had referred to, something to do with them. And the very idea terrified her. (19.29)
It seems as though Sophie is wrestling with the idea that the choices she makes are not necessarily her own. There's a bigger plan out there, one that she is not in control of. So is that her destiny? To follow in Flamel's footsteps? Or is she just at the mercy of Flamel's choices?
You are the prisoners of circumstance, of coincidence and chance […] if you believe in such things. (21.12)
Props to the twins—they totally called it. Their suspicions that they don't have much control over their lives are spot on. In fact, it's possible they never had any control to begin with. If they are the twins of the prophecy, haven't their fates been sealed for ages?
"Two months ago, Josh, you should never have asked me for a job, and you, Sophie, should never have started working in The Coffee Cup. But you did, and because you made those decisions you are both standing here with me tonight […] of course, there is a school of thought that suggests that you were fated to take the jobs, to meet Perenelle and me and to come on this adventure."
Scathach nodded. "Destiny," she said. (21.14-15)
So because Sophie and Josh exercised their free will, they ended up in this mess, without intending to? That hardly seems fair. But the alternative, that Sophie and Josh were fated to come to San Francisco and meet the Flamels, doesn't seem fair either. That's because either way, Sophie's and Josh's lives are no longer in their control.