“The thing inside me roared to the surface, speeding toward the Darkling’s call. I couldn’t stop myself. I answered. The world exploded into blazing white light.  

The darkness shattered around us like glass. For a moment, I saw the faces of the crowd, their mouths wide with shock as the tent filled with shining sunlight, the air shimmering with heat.” 

The Darkling coaxes Alina’s light power out of her after she’s brought to his tent in Chapter 3. While not the first moment we see Alina’s power used to combat the darkness, this is the first time that she is aware that she’s doing so. This scene works to establish the way that the two forces oppose one another, with the Darkling’s shadows first consuming the ordinary light in the tent and then Alina’s Grisha light countering it when it’s pulled out of her by the Darkling. The true strength of her power is also emphasized in this scene, especially where it acts to dispel the Darkling’s own power. Alina’s light doesn’t make the darkness fade or wane, it shatters the darkness. This not only illustrates that her power is a match for his, but it foreshadows the events at the end of the novel where Alina’s light overcomes the Darkling.  

“Mal was standing at the edge of the gleaming circle now. I could see the shapes of the volcra in the swirling dark, feel the beat of their wings. He could have run, could have wept, could have clung to the sides of the skiff until the darkness took him, but he did none of those things. He stood unflinching before the gathering dark.”  

This quote by Alina occurs in Chapter 22, just after Mal is thrown from the sandskiff by Ivan. An emotionally charged moment in the text, this also perfectly illustrates the way that Alina’s light can hold the Darkling’s power at bay. The circle of light shelters Mal from the darkness and the volcra, who cannot withstand the light. Alina’s light exerts a force on the darkness of the Fold itself, enforcing a perimeter that the darkness and the volcra that inhabit it cannot breach. Importantly, the darkness itself is described as “gathering,” implying that it is collecting on the other side of Alina’s light. The darkness itself does not rupture Alina’s light, but she’s forced to withdraw it by the Darkling. The takeaway here being that the darkness of the Fold cannot overpower the Alina’s light in the way that the light can eradicate the dark when she possesses the amplifier.  

“I’m so sorry I left you so long in the dark. 
I’m sorry but I’m ready now." 

I called and the light answered.

This is an apology that Alina gives to her power that occurs in Chapter 12. As she’s standing in Baghra’s hut, Alina comes to realize that she has been hiding her power away for her entire life and finally address it directly. This quote touches on one of the secondary meanings of darkness featured in the book where it stands in for secrecy or something in hiding. In this case, Alina finally admits that she has been hiding her magic even from herself. This is a moment of significant progress for Alina. She regrets having stifled her power and finally unleashes it on her own. In so doing, this scene takes an interesting stance and pits the metaphorical darkness of secrecy against both the physical light Alina can produce and also the metaphorical enlightenment of her own self-knowledge.  

“‘Let the Saints protect the Sun Summoner,’ intoned the priest, ‘she who was sent to deliver us from the evils of the Shadow Fold and make this nation whole again.’” 

This quote is spoken by a priest during a Mass that Alina hears while travelling west from the Little Palace in Chapter 16. Here we see the way the people of Ravka define the opposing forces of light and darkness on a cultural and religious level. Not only does the priest establish the Sun Summoner as a representative of good by praying or her, but he also calls the Shadow Fold evil during his prayer. This further cements how light is correlated with goodness through its embodiment by the Sun Summoner and how darkness is associated with evil, especially though the Shadow Fold. That the metaphorical struggle between darkness as evil and light as good is sewn into the religious fabric of Ravka also suggests that it isn’t just Alina who perceives the dark as an oppressive, evil force.