Scythe

by

Neal Shusterman

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Scythe: Chapter 37 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
In his journal, Volta writes that Rand and Chomsky often discuss what methods of self-gleaning they'd like to use one day. Volta says he hates this game, as he fully intends to glean for thousands of years.
This journal entry was presumably written well before Rowan met Volta, and suggests that all scythes begin their careers idealistic and not fully aware of the sacrifices that they'll be asked to make.
Themes
Coming of Age Theme Icon
Two days after Goddard's death, Xenocrates sits with Rowan and promises to ban fire in conclave. He marvels that Rowan made it out alive, but Rowan says he was stationed by the gate. He stares into Xenocrates's eyes and asks if this is the end of his apprenticeship. Xenocrates says that Rowan will still take the final test, and he or Citra will still have to glean the other. Maxim Easley arrives with champagne, and when Xenocrates asks why he's still here, Rowan explains that Maxim owns this house. Maxim says he's selling it.
At this point, Xenocrates has no real reason to continue to uphold Rand's suggestion of Citra and Rowan gleaning the other, which suggests that he's likely only doing so because he feels that he cannot bend the rules of the Scythedom once again. In other words, Xenocrates is likely—or hopefully—trying to reaffirm his loyalty to the Scythedom and behave properly.
Themes
Surveillance, Corruption, and Justice Theme Icon
Xenocrates mentions that there are rumors that a scythe addressed a group of firefighters. Rowan says he's seen the videos, and Xenocrates goes on to say that they've found the remains of Volta, Chomsky, and possibly Rand, all with the gems from their rings and their robes, but they haven't found either the diamonds from Goddard's robes or his ring. Goddard's skeleton also has no skull. Rowan suggests the investigators need to look harder. Esme appears in the doorway. Rowan calls her in and informs Xenocrates that Esme is returning to her mother. He asks if Xenocrates would like to take her there and winks. Xenocrates wonders if he should pay more attention to Rowan and agrees to take Esme home. As he gets up, he agrees to call off the investigation.
Again, the way that Rowan manipulates Xenocrates shows that even the nasty things that Rowan learned from Goddard can be useful to him, especially now that he's an outsider in the Scythedom after losing two mentors. Xenocrates's realization that he needs to pay attention to Rowan suggests that he's aware of many of the things Rowan could've learned from Goddard. Xenocrates trained Goddard, after all, so it's likely that he'll recognize some of Rowan's quirks that possibly came from Xenocrates himself.
Themes
Coming of Age Theme Icon
Surveillance, Corruption, and Justice Theme Icon