Study Guide

The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking #1) Chapter 14

By Patrick Ness

Chapter 14

The Wrong End of a Gun

  • The guy with the gun still hasn't stepped into plain sight, but he threatens to shoot Manchee, who is barking.
  • Todd notices that except for his Noise, everything is quiet.
  • The voice questions them about what's going on, and in a quick save from revealing who they are, Viola blurts out that Todd saved his life.
  • The person lowers their gun and Todd realizes why it's so quiet: The voice belongs to an old woman. She studies Todd closely, trying to read him.
  • She eventually lowers her gun and starts climbing down the rocks. She introduces herself as Matilde, saying that one day they might "earn the right to shake my hand" (14.57). Big words.
  • She invites them to come along with her, insisting that they need a good night's sleep before they keep going. Todd and Viola deliberate about whether it's the best idea, and Todd reminds Viola that he carries the germ, and probably won't even be allowed in the town.
  • Todd and Manchee trail a little ways behind Hildy and Viola, who seem to be getting along; Todd feels hurt that Viola seems okay with running along with the first other quiet person she meets.
  • He and Manchee allow the ladies to get far enough ahead of them that it looks like they might just be left behind.
  • Then he hears someone's Noise saying "hello."