Study Guide

Dune Book I, Chapter 15

By Frank Herbert

Book I, Chapter 15

  • The ecologist, Dr. Kynes, goes to meet Leto and Paul. Kynes's mind continues to question Paul's ability to fit the prophecies of the messiah.
  • Gurney informs Kynes that he may approach and speak with Leto. Kynes thinks the Duke's people are in for a nasty surprise when they realize who is really in charge of Arrakis.
  • Leto realizes, through Kynes's tone, attitude, and mannerisms, that the man has gone native.
  • Kynes explains to Leto and Paul the inner workings of the stillsuit, a garment designed to recycle the body's moisture to prevent dehydration. (This moment is one of those that no amount of paraphrasing can do justice. You simply must read the passage to get a proper feel for how detailed Herbert's universe really is.)
  • While explaining, Kynes adjusts Leto's stillsuit for him. When he gets to Paul, he finds the boy has already put on his stillsuit perfectly.
  • Leto, Gurney, Paul, and Kynes use an ornithopter to fly into the desert to observe a spice-mining factory in action. An envoy goes with them. En route, Leto asks Kynes how the change from Harkonnen rule to Leto's rule is progressing.
  • As the Judge of Change and the planetologist, Kynes tries to keep his answers from giving away too much, but Leto pushes the fact that he is not Harkonnen.
  • Kynes does mention making Arrakis into an Eden, but when the Duke questions him about it, Kynes remains aloof.
  • They also discuss many aspects of Arrakis's ecology. Again, be sure to read the full version, as it's super informative, and also jump over to our "Setting" section for more discussion.
  • Kynes does mention that whenever they dig for the spice, the worms come to destroy the factory. No one knows what the link is between the two. Maybe they just don't like humans rooting around in their backyards. Or maybe it's something else.
  • Leto, Gurney, Paul, and Kynes see a dust cloud ahead and move in its direction. They find the factory mining for spice, but Leto spots something else in the distance.
  • It's a sandworm inbound for the factory.
  • The factory workers call in their carryall—a ship meant to "carry all" of them away—but they receive no response. Sorry, guys, them's the breaks.
  • Leto decides them's aren't the breaks and mounts a rescue operation. He orders his envoy to take as many as they can, and even to throw out chairs and shield generators if it means they can take on more weight.
  • The rescue operation is a success, and everyone escapes just in time to watch the worm demolish their factory and the full load of spice aboard it. Remember all that money talk from the last chapter? Yeah….
  • Kynes says a brief prayer but acts all innocent when caught by Leto.
  • Paul spots two men making a run for it across the open desert. He recognizes their movement as belonging to Fremen, though the spice miners deny it.
  • Kynes remains impressed by the boy's intuition and deductive skills and wonders about Paul's connection to the prophecy. He also reaches another conclusion. He likes Duke Leto.