Mare wakes and realizes that she is on the Undertrain. She realizes that she is lying across from Cal, who is handcuffed in metal he could easily melt away. He is still, and Farley and several guards have guns pointed at him. Mare is lying on someone’s lap, but this person will not let her sit up to see who it is. Mare asks for Kilorn, and he emerges from the crowd of Farley’s Guardsmen. Mare turns her head sharply to see who is above her, and immediately asks if everyone is dead. Shade assures her that neither of them is dead.
It is clear from Mare’s question that she legitimately believed she was going to die in the arena. The world seemed so hopeless that it is more plausible to her that all of her friends are dead than that Shade has somehow, magically, turned up alive. Cal’s restraints represent another inversion in the novel: the Reds have now taken a Silver prince prisoner.
Shade reveals to Mare that he was reported dead, but, as he demonstrates, he has the power to teleport instantly anywhere he wishes. His executioners were consequently unable to kill him. Shade assures Mare that their parents are also safe.
Not only is Mare’s brother alive, but he also has a power like hers. She now has someone else in her life with whom she can share this new, strange Silver-and-Red ability.
Mare looks at everyone and tells Farley and the guards to let Cal go. No one answers, and Cal says that he is too much of a danger. Mare begins to say that Cal saved her after the atrocities Maven committed upon him. Cal bristles at Maven’s name. Farley insists that Cal’s saving Mare does not prove his loyalty to the Scarlet Guard. Farley then insults their “romance.” Mare and Cal both flinch, knowing that they desire each other but that their chance of romance is ruined after everything that has happened.
Mare wants to trust Cal, but she must come to the understanding that even if he is loyal to her, he will not necessarily be loyal to the Scarlet Guard. After everything that has happened, both she and Cal should see that conflicting and limited loyalties happen all the time. Their feelings for each other remain, but they have already demonstrated that they cannot promise loyalty to one another. Both of them are loyal first and foremost to their political convictions.
Kilorn tells Mare that the Guard cannot afford to trust Silvers again. He also says that Cal might be a valuable prisoner. Mare does not say that Cal could easily escape if he wanted to, but she realizes that Cal is too tired and broken to try escaping. Mare wishes she had the luxury of choosing not to fight anymore. She knows that Kilorn and Farley will not stop fighting either. She tells Farley that Maven has the list of the others like her and Shade, and will use the bloodbase to track them down.
Even as a prisoner, Cal has some privilege over Mare. His personhood is not in question, whereas Reds’ basic human rights are not being met. Knowing that the other Reds are much closer to her in their experience of political despair and political hope, Mare turns to them to begin strategizing for the next step in the revolution.
Mare stands and resolves to find the others before Maven does. Kilorn steps forward, determined to join her in that mission. Quietly, Cal radiates warmth over Mare. She thinks back over her friendship with Cal and realizes that they are no longer friends. Still, they are united by a single thought about Maven: “I will kill him.”
Mare’s relationships are complex, and no two are quite alike. Although in the past she has had a distaste for manipulation, she realizes that it might be advantageous to use the connections she has with people rather than rejecting those she does not consider true friends. In some senses, her bond with Cal is the strongest and most personal bond she has because Maven has taken so much from both of them.