Study Guide

The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking #1) Chapter 31

By Patrick Ness

Chapter 31

The Wicked Are Punished

  • Todd takes some time figuring out how to steer his boat.
  • He tell us his plan: Manchee is going to take the burning stick somewhere so that Aaron thinks that Todd has a fire going. Manchee will come barking to Aaron's campsite, pretending to tell Todd that he's found Aaron. Aaron will catch wind of this and go chasing after the dog (who will hopefully run fast), and at this point, Todd will row by and pick up Viola (as well as Manchee) before Aaron can get to them.
  • Yep, pretty complicated plot right there. Todd knows this, and the only other option is to kill Aaron.
  • Todd looks at his knife, still covered in blood. He says that it seems alive—but will only have life if he chooses to give it; he is the master of the knife.
  • Todd's heart is beating out of his chest and he shakes like mad, but his plan is actually working. Except that when the Viola part comes along she's lying motionless on the ground—she's alive, but passed out.
  • She stirs a little as Todd shakes her; he can hear Manchee and Aaron getting closer.
  • Viola repeats, "you came for me" a couple of times, and then they run for the boat.
  • Viola makes it in, but Todd falls short, landing in the water. As Viola tries to pull him in, Aaron catches up and pulls his legs in the opposite direction. Manchee, ever the hero, jumps in and starts attacking Aaron, biting his nose off.
  • Then Aaron grabs Manchee by his scruff.
  • Todd and Viola are in the boat, getting farther away with the current. Aaron has Manchee on shore, and Todd is screaming Manchee's name, while Manchee is barking Todd's.
  • Aaron takes his free hand and breaks Manchee's neck, and Todd reels back in the boat, overwhelmed with darkness.