Those two unnamed guys are talking about Ender still. They want to know why Ender beat up Stilson. And they want to see what will happen between Ender and his brother Peter. (Any guess what this chapter – titled “Peter” – is going to be about?)
Back at home, Ender’s older sister Valentine tries to comfort Ender (the usual “sorry you got your monitor removed” brother-sister interaction), so that’s nice.
Less nice: Ender’s even-older brother Peter pretty much beats him up and threatens to kill them both. See, Peter’s annoyed that Ender had his monitor for a whole year more than he did – which means that the army thought Ender was a better candidate.
One interesting aspect to this little family drama is that Peter asks Ender to play “buggers and astronauts,” which is their version of “cops and robbers.” But that’s not the really interesting part. Nope, it’s that when Ender puts on the bugger mask, he starts to think a little bit like an alien. That is, he thinks that they wouldn’t call themselves “buggers.” Rather, the aliens probably have some negative name to call humans, like “slimies” (because we’re so oily and slimy compared to them).
Anyway, after Peter threatens to kill his little siblings and Valentine threatens to blackmail him with a secret letter saying that Peter killed her – you know, a typical day at the Wiggin house – Peter starts laughing and says that it’s all a game: “I can make you guys believe anything. I can make you dance around like puppets” (2.64).
This raises the question of whether or not he was serious then. Peter is a complex character.
Father and Mother Wiggin are less complex. In fact, they never even get referred to by their names in this book, so that lets you know how important they’ll be. (Answer: Not very important at all.) But they show up here to spend some time with their kids.
Too bad they weren’t here earlier when Peter was threatening to kill the others. Our parents would never let that fly.
Then, that night, while Ender is pretending to sleep, Peter whispers to him that he loves him and is sorry for, you know, threatening to kill him.