Amari, Tzain, and Zélie awake to find themselves tied together in a cave. Their weapons and the scroll are gone. A man with white patterns painted on his skin appears (later revealed as Lekan). He accuses the teenagers of stealing the scroll from his people, directing his ire at Amari, who he says stinks of noble blood.
Reasonably, the atrocities perpetrated by Amari’s family have made others wary of her, especially in a former divîner stronghold.
It seems that the man (Lekan) is going to kill them, until Zélie begins to talk about the vision she saw outside—of Chândomblé full of other people. Amari realizes with horror that her father, Saran, destroyed this place, filling her with shame. Moved by Zélie’s words, the man removes their restraints and beckons them to follow.
Talking about magic and tradition helps Zélie to quickly form a bond with this stranger, gaining his trust. Evidence of Saran’s violence gives further support to Amari’s growing sense of alienation from him. As she travels, she gains more and more perspective on the wrongs he has committed, which she has been shielded from in the palace.