Study Guide

Blood Red Road Chapter 9

By Moira Young

Chapter 9

Freedom Field

  • It's now midsummer on the dot, so this whole human sacrifice business is about to go down.
  • Saba helps everyone prepare for the assault. There seems to be some sort of plan, albeit a vague one, but no one shows any interest in filling Saba in.
  • Apparently, Saba and Jack are supposed to enter through a narrow cave. Before they go inside, Saba surprises us all by finally kissing Jack.
  • After a brief make-out session, Saba and Jack get back on track. They meet up with the rest of the group on the other side of the mountain, with "the King's Palace" in clear view (9.131).
  • That night, the workers in the fields begin preparing for the ceremony. Emmi and Tommo are staying away from the main action, while the others move ahead.
  • Then our heroes see something horrifying—the King. He's limping, but he's very much alive.
  • Jack and Saba sneak up as the King begins the ceremony with a ritualistic speech. Several Tonton then drag a very messed-up looking Lugh from shadows.
  • Ike and Saba break away from the group. They bop two Tonton in the group carrying Lugh and steal their uniforms.
  • Ike and Saba end up on the platform as the ritual begins. At the last second, Jack's promised diversion comes: a torrent of water bursting out of the irrigation system, flooding the chaal fields.
  • In the chaos, Ike and Saba snag Lugh and start running away, though the King sees them. They reach the stables with the others, but Saba sees Epona getting chased in the distance.
  • Epona has no hope. Saba decides to go back for her, but she ends up mercy killing her with her bow. This had happened in one of her hellwurm-induced nightmares, by the way.
  • The group keeps moving. Lugh finally wakes up, and he and Saba share a warm reunion.
  • The kids reach the spot where they're supposed to meet up with Tommo and Emmi, but they only find Tommo looking frantic. It seems like Emmi was kidnapped by the Tonton.
  • Saba and Jack decide to go to Pine Top Hill to bargain with the King. Everyone is tense.
  • After some waiting, Saba and Jack see the King approach in the distance with DeMalo and another Tonton. He has Emmi, and he's holding a gun to her head.
  • The King wants Saba's life in exchange for her sister's. Saba agrees.
  • As soon as they have Saba restrained, however, a group of other Tonton emerges from behind the group. What bamboozlement.
  • Suddenly, a crow swoops down from the sky, followed by a group of vicious Free Hawks. To our shock, DeMalo suddenly turns tail and runs, along with a handful of other Tonton.
  • Saba plants an arrow in the King as the tide turns in her team's favor. He gets up again (because of course), but he ends up impaled on a sharp rock formation. Boo-hoo.
  • When Saba returns to the battle, she sees that Ike has been killed. That's a legitimate boo-hoo right there, folks.
  • After the group puts Ike to rest on a funeral pyre, Maev tells Saba that the dudes they were in a territorial dispute with ended up helping in the battle. Sweet deal.
  • Saba thanks the Free Hawks and wishes them goodbye. She's surprised to see Jack walking away without saying anything, however.
  • Jack tells Saba that he has some business to take care of, but he promises that he will see her again near the "Big Water" out west (9.993).
  • Finally, Emmi, Lugh, and Saba are reunited again, with Tommo joining their little fam. They head off west, with Saba leading the way for the first time in her life.