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Quotes

Quote #7

Ender was human and Bean had been allowed to see. (11.213)

Now, we know that Ender thinks that he’s Bean’s secret friend.  But the end of Chapter 11 is the first time that Bean realizes that he’s Ender’s friend. What makes Bean realize this is that Ender shows his, ahem, softer side – that he’s not just an invulnerable commander, but he’s really a vulnerable kid. Also, they have a sleepover, which drives home the point that they’re friends. This is a bit odd, because Ender can’t be friends with any of this other soldiers, so why can he be friends with Bean? Why can he show Bean that he’s vulnerable?

Quote #8

They both laughed, and Ender had to remind himself that Graff was only acting like a friend, that everything he did was a lie or a cheat calculated to turn Ender into an efficient fighting machine. (13.272)

How do you feel about this? We’ve heard (from Graff) that he really is Ender’s friend. When Ender isn’t in the room, Graff just won’t shut up about how great Ender is. But all this time, Ender has only seen Graff as a manipulative guy. (Why? Because Graff is a manipulative guy.) This seems like one of those rare moments when Ender realizes that Graff is also his friend. But notice that Ender doesn’t totally believe it. We could compare this to the quote above: Bean gets the idea that he and Ender are friends pretty quickly, but Ender resists the idea that he’s friends with Graff. Why?

Quote #9

Ender imagined what it would be like to have his friends there with him, cheering or laughing or gasping with apprehension; sometimes he thought it would be a great distraction, but other times he wished for it with all his heart. Even when he had spent his days lying out in the sunlight on a raft in a lake, he had not been so lonely. Mazer Rackham was his companion, was his teacher, but was not his friend. (14.233)

Like Graff, Mazer loves Ender (see 14.308), but doesn’t shows it until the end. And so Ender is surrounded by friends, he just doesn't know it. Which is one of those funny moments: Ender knows that he’s Bean’s secret friend, but he doesn’t understand that other people might be his secret friend too.

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