Study Guide

Dune Book III, Chapter 46

By Frank Herbert

Book III, Chapter 46

  • Paul, Stilgar, and Gurney stand on a ridge, viewing the Emperor's war camp. Paul seems amused that they think themselves safe behind their shield wall.
  • How confident is the Emperor? He's brought his court to the battleground, including the women, the servants, and the lackeys. Far be it from us to criticize, but that seems like a horrible idea.
  • Paul gets the weather report. A great-grandmother storm is inbound right for them.
  • Gurney's a little gloomy, but Paul reassures Stilgar that that's just Gurney's pre-battle way.
  • Gurney does bring up a good point. Their plan requires them to use atomics, and the Great Convention states that no atomics may be used against humans. But according to Paul, they aren't going to use the atomics on people; they're going to use the atomics on the shields protecting those people. Well, okay, Paul…
  • The Emperor's camp sends up a flag as a message. It's the CHOAM flag, a subtle message to the other houses reminding them of where the coin stands.
  • Paul gets another update on the storm. It's still en route to hit the shield wall dead on. Paul orders his gunners to set their sights before the storm renders them blind. Their aim is for the nose of the ships. No nose, no flying. No flying, no escape.
  • The time comes. Gurney presses the red button and the atomic explosion rocks the world. The storm hits them dead on, and the gunners begin their assault. Don't you just love it when a plan comes together?
  • The command post packs up and heads into the tunnel. Inside, they receive a message, though it's hard to make it out with all the static. It turns out that there was a raid on Sietch Tabr. Something has happened to Alia, and Paul's son has been killed.