Summary:Words of Radiance/Chapter 56

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Twenty-three cohorts followed behind, that come from the contributions of the King of Makabakam, for though the bond between man and spren was at times inexplicable, the ability for bonded spren to manifest in our world rather than their own grew stronger through the course of the oaths given.
—From Words of Radiance, chapter 35, page 9

Plot Summary
Ishevah 1173

Kaladin and Sigzil discuss Amaram's lack of surgebinding ability as they arrive at the dueling arena. With the entire Kholin household in attendance, Kaladin brings every guard that he could. Kaladin feels anger that Amaram is honored by his appointment by Dalinar after what Kaladin told Dalinar about Amaram, and decides that he has to do something about it if Dalinar won't. Sigzil suggests that Kaladin reveal his powers and join Dalinar's Knights but Kaladin ignores this and sends Sigzil to pass his orders to the guards. Kaladin orders Moash to lead a patrol duty the next day so that he is away when Graves is dealt with.

Adolin speaks with his shardblade to prepare for his duel. He burns a glyphward painted by Shallan and tells Navani to give her a chance. They discuss the plan regarding the boon and some changes to the terms of the duel. They review Adolin's preparations and Adolin gets anxious when he realizes he doesn't have his mother's bracelet as a good luck charm. Adolin enters the dueling arena and waves to Shallan and checks to see if Sadeas is there. His opponents enter the arena and he is shocked that there are four instead of two like he expected.

Dalinar questions Sadeas about what is happening and Sadeas proclaims ignorance, until Elhokar questions him. Sadeas replies that since Adolin wasn't specific enough when naming the terms of the duel that he would be subject to a full disadvantaged duel. Dalinar tells Elhokar that Adolin would have to forfeit but Elhokar dissuades him, and the duel begins.

Adolin curses himself as he realizes his mistake in the way he issued and accepted the duel challenge. He realizes the four opponents include Relis, Elit, Abrobadar and Jakamav. Adolin puts his back to a wall so he doesn't get surrounded, and Zahel shouts advice to him to try to fight them one at a time. Adolin takes an offensive approach and does well until Jakamav is able to surprise him with a hammer blow. Adolin tries to yield but in the chaos of the duel is ignored, and he realizes that he might be severely injured.

Dalinar realizes that Adolin can have two fellow duelists under the terms of the challenge and asks for Elhokar's shardblade but the king refuses, since that would endanger Dalinar. Sadeas taunts Dalinar for not going into the arena to help Adolin. Dalinar watches alarmed as Renarin with only his shardblade goes to help his brother.

Adolin battles on and tries to get some breathing room so that he can signal the judge to yield, but Relis threatens to have Renarin severely injured or killed if Adolin doesn't keep fighting and accept punishment for what he did to Elit. Adolin reluctantly agrees, but berates his supposed friend Jakamav.

Dalinar implores Istow to end the fight, then says he will end it since she ignores him, but she replies that her authority supercedes him in the arena. Renarin fights Abrobadar as the other three gang up on Adolin, and one of Adolin's shoulder shards breaks. Dalinar addresses the crowd, asking for someone to aid his sons. He looks at Amaram, who averts his eyes. Kaladin then volunteers to aid them, telling Dalinar to take care of his men if it goes poorly, then he jumps into the arena with his spear.


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