The following is an author’s annotation that relates to a specific chapter of the book MISTBORN: THE FINAL EMPIRE. Note that the following is NOT the text of the actual chapter, but a companion to the chapter, revealing “behind the scenes” information. If you have not read the book up to–and including–this chapter, you risk serious spoilers! Please, if you haven’t read MISTBORN, go visit the sample chapters, or perhaps purchase the book via Amazon.
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This two-chapter cycle is one of my very favorites in the book. It’s the sort of thing you can only pull off–in my opinion–after good set up. The reader has to feel an attachment to the characters so that the tension works. They also have to understand the magic so that the action is quick, not laden with explanations or confusion. And, they have to understand the context so that it feels like something is at stake.
But, when everything comes together, you get chapters that are very powerful and, hopefully, fulfilling. The scene with Vin falling in the rain, hitting the rooftop, then crawling into a puddle is one of the first and most vivid ones I had for this book. Then, the image of Sazed–the quiet, humble scholar–appearing at the lair with the dying girl in his arms. . . .<.p>
Well, I feel that these two chapters are some of the best I’ve ever written.
Burning metals by instinct, by the way, is something I had to add to the book for scenes like this. I had to be able to have characters be able to heal quickly–in a relative sort of way–so that I could keep the pacing where I wanted it. That meant long term, quick healing, if that makes any sense. I made it possible for an Allomancer’s body to use metals–particularly pewter and tin–when they needed them.
Those of you who have read to the end might wonder where the Lord Ruler got his fantastic healing powers. Well, it has to do with Feruchemy. See, the ability to heal one’s body is one of the things a Feruchemist can store up. And, the Lord Ruler’s power–by being both Allomancer and Feruchemist–is to draw near-infinite power from his Feruchemical storages by burning them. He can be any age he wants. He can live as long as he wants. And, he can heal as quickly and much as he wants. More on this in book two.