Brief no-spoiler overview of Chapters 17-18:
Tris is welcomed into the Dauntless-born crowd by Uriah.
They go out on an adventure as a big group and Tris enjoys herself immensely.
She proves she is brave.
Christina and her friends stick up for her again.
The Dauntless born initiates and transfers are together for stage two.
Stage two is awful.
Tris must be brave and smart for stage two.
Tris and Four have a few cute moments.
Tris learns about Dauntless changes.
**SPOILER ALERT AHEAD: IN DETAIL DISCUSSION OF CH 17-18**
Tris is sitting in a hallway because she can’t be in the dormitory anymore, she had cleaned the blood up because no one else wanted to. Uriah sees her and knows that she is upset so he invites her on an adventure with the rest of the Dauntless-born initiates.
Usually the only initiates that are allowed to come are ones who have siblings who are part of Dauntless but Uriah makes a case for Tris that she had just seen someone stabbed in the eye. So they let her come.
They jump on the train and she meets a Dauntless named Shauna who knows who she is because of Four. Tris realizes that Four isn’t coming so that must mean that there is heights involved with this adventure and that no one else must know about his fear.
Tris gets jealous with how Shauna reminisces about being an initiate with Four.
Tris realizes that they are going to the empty Hancock building which is dark and empty. They enter the dark building and head towards the elevator.
Tris has a small fight with a girl who has a shaved head.
Shaved head girl: “‘What floor?'”
Tris: “One hundred.”
Shaved head girl: “How would you know that?”
Tris: “‘We’re in a one-hundred-story abandoned building with some Dauntless,’ I retort. ‘Why don’t you know that?'” (Roth. Pg. 216.)
When they get to the top, there is a hole, they use a ladder to climb onto the roof.
Tris sees something and realizes they will be zip-lining. Shauna is the first to get in, she hurtles towards the ground and every one is cheering and getting pumped.
Tris thinks, “‘I have to wait for seven people’ It is a strange blend of terror and eagerness, unfamiliar until now.” (Roth. Pg. 219.)
All of the Dauntless are unafraid but the initiates look terrified. Tris wonders what happens to transform them from “panic to delight.” (Roth. Pg. 219.)
Tris is up now, Uriah’s older brother says, “‘Ready, Stiff?’ Zeke smirks down at me. ‘I have to say, I’m impressed that you aren’t screaming and crying right now.” (Roth. Pg. 220.)
Tris feels on top of the world as she flies through the air, weightless, free.
She feels exhilarated, happy and full of adrenaline.
She describes it, “The ground grows and bulges beneath me, and I can see the tiny people standing on the pavement below. I should scream, like any rational human being would, but when I open my moth again, I just crow with joy. I yell louder, and the figures on the ground pump their fists and yell back, but they are so far away I can barely hear them.” (Roth. Pg. 221-222.)
When she finally slows to a stop, she works to undo herself and drops twenty feet into the arms of the Dauntless people, she thinks that it is a braver act than the zip-lining.
They all get ready to catch Uriah and Shauna says to Tris, “Pretty sure we can’t call you ‘Stiff’ anymore, Tris.” (Roth. Pg. 224.)
As Tris walks into the cafeteria with the Dauntless, her friends gape at her.
She tries to act nonchalant but thinks they can see through her.
Will says, “They may not have wanted you there then, but they seem to like you now.” (Roth. Pg. 225.)
Al tells Tris that she missed seeing Christina stand up for Abnegation and almost punching an Erudite who was here as a reporter.
Christina turns to Tris and says, “Yeah, while you were off having fun, I was doing the dirty work of defending your old faction, eliminating interfaction conflict…” (Roth. Pg. 226.)
Will interrupts and tells Christina that she had fun doing it and then turns to Tris to tell her the whole story.
This chapter ends with Tris thinking about being Dauntless, “It’s the first time I have been really eager to be one of them. Which means I have to survive the next stage of initiation.” (Roth. Pg. 226.)
Favorite quotes from chapter seventeen:
When Tris zip-lines from a building with the Dauntless born initiates, “My heart beats so hard it hurts, and I can’t scream and I can’t breathe, but I also feel everything, every vein and every fiber, every bone and every nerve, all awake and buzzing in my body as if charged with electricity. I am pure adrenaline.” (Roth. Pg. 221.)
The second stage of initiation begins now.
The Dauntless-born initiates and the transfers will now be together for this stage.
They all speak about ranks and the unfairness that Dauntless-born get to train all their life but Uriah shuts it down by saying he heard there is no way to train for stage two.
When Tris is called she enters the room with Four and sees a machine much like the aptitude test.
Tris asks Four what the simulation is and he says, “‘Ever hear the phrase ‘face your fears’? he says. ‘We’re taking that literally. The simulation will teach you to control your emotions in the midst of a frightening situation.” (Roth. Pg. 230.)
Four will be able to see what she sees, so he can monitor how she is doing.
She will have to calm herself down and take hold of her fear in order to get out.
He tells her to be Brave and she closes her eyes.
She awakes in a field, she hears wind that she can’t feel.
Something lands on her shoulder, it has talons. It’s a black bird. A crow.
She tries to get rid of it but she can’t. Thunder rumbles in the distance.
The sky darkens, an army of crows is swooping down on her.
She tries to run but her feet won’t move, the birds are pecking her, hurting her, she is freaking out.
She screams for help before she remembers, “You stay in the hallucination until you can calm down.” (Roth. Pg. 234.)
She tries to calm, she is sobbing, she relaxes each part of her body slowly, while she cries.
She wakes in the metal chair and screams to get the birds off her but they are gone.
Four allows her to calm down so the others won’t she her all frazzled.
He grabs her and takes her out the back door, they walk for a while and then Tris gets angry at him for doing that to her.
He calmly says, “Did you think overcoming cowardice would be easy?” (Roth. Pg. 237.)
She is sobbing again and he just stands there and let’s her cry. She says she wants to go home and Four gets mad at her.
She thinks she failing but finds out that she got out of her hallucination three times faster than any of the other initiates.
Four explains that being fearless isn’t the point, but being able to act regardless of fear is the goal.
Tris finds herself leaning in closer to Four, closing the distance.
Tris says she finds getting into Dauntless difficult and Four tells her that it never used to be so hard and that the new Dauntless leaders are the ones who have changed it to make initiation tougher.
She realizes that Eric has been trained to be tougher and vicious but the training didn’t work on Four.
This Chapter ends with a conversation between Tris and Four,
Tris: “‘Do I look like I’ve been crying’ I say.”
“He leans in close, narrowing his eyes like he’s inspecting my face. A smile tugs at the corner of his mouth. Even closer, so we would be breathing the same air-if I could remember to breathe.”
Four: “‘No, Tris,’ he says. A more serious look replaces his smile as he adds, ‘You look tough as nails.'” (Roth. Pg. 241.)
Favorite Quote from chapter eighteen:
When Four warns Tris about the stage two testing, “‘Be brave, Tris,’ he whispers. ‘The first time is always the hardest.’ His eyes are the last thing I see.” (Roth. Pg. 232.)
Thoughts on Chapter 17-18:
Tris made some friends with some Dauntless-born initiates and had a lot of fun zip-lining, she feels alive, free and for the first time really enjoys being a Dauntless.
The detail of the zip-lining experience was amazing, you really get to see how fearless Tris is.
The second stage is “facing your fears” its terrifying and very well detailed.
I loved all the Tris and Four moments. I am growing very fond of their friendship.
What will happen with Tris’ new friends and her first friends? Will there be jealousy?
How will Tris fair with stage two, will she be found out as her mother suspects she will?
What is going on with the Dauntless leaders, why did they change the initiation process?