Chapter 42: Inej 

On the voyage back to Ketterdam, the crew discusses what will happen to Nina now that she has taken the jurda parem. Nina, still empowered by the drug, tells Inej that she can hear the way Kaz’s heartbeat changes when Inej is near him. Without asking, Nina removes the scars left behind by Inej’s Menagerie tattoo.  

Inej tells Kaz about her plan to buy her own ship and hunt slavers. Kaz asks her to stay in Ketterdam instead because he wants her. She asks him how he wants her, given he can’t touch her or look at her. She says she’ll have him without armor or she won’t have him at all. Silently, she begs him to say something to make her stay. When he doesn’t say anything, she walks away. 

Chapter 43: Nina 

Nina begins to suffer severe withdrawal. Matthias sits by her bedside. Nina asks Matthias to stay with her until the end. He says he’ll stay with her always and he begs her not to leave him. 

Chapter 44: Jesper 

Jesper misses Wylan, whom he hasn’t seen since they set sail from Fjerda. He’s been told that Wylan is below deck taking care of Nina. When the ship arrives in Ketterdam, Kaz sends word to Van Eck and arranges for a rendezvous. The crew rows a longboat out to a small island to meet Van Eck. When they reach the island, Van Eck gives Kaz the money in exchange for Kuwei, but then Van Eck’s men draw their weapons. Van Eck says he won’t let Kaz leave the island alive. Suddenly, he summons a group of Grisha Tidemakers and Squallers who are high on jurda parem.  

Chapter 45: Kaz 

Van Eck reveals his evil plan. The Merchant Council was never aware of the heist. Van Eck had hired Kaz and Pekka Rollins to abduct Bo Yul-Bayur because he wanted to manufacture jurda parem himself and take over the world.  

Van Eck threatens to destroy Kaz’s ship. Kaz tells him he shouldn’t do that because his son is on board. Van Eck reveals that he doesn’t care about Wylan because he’s an idiot who can’t read or write. Besides, he has another son on the way who will be his true heir.  

Van Eck’s Grisha destroy the ship. Jesper howls, thinking Nina and Wylan were on the ship, but Matthias and Kaz remain calm. They reveal that Van Eck doesn’t have the real Kuwei, but Wylan. Before Nina went into withdrawal, Kaz had her tailor Wylan to look like Kuwei.  

Furious, Van Eck threatens to have his Grisha kill everyone. Kaz makes the mistake of glancing at Inej. Van Eck then orders the Grisha to take the money and Inej only. Jesper shoots one Squaller but the others fly off with Inej. Van Eck escapes with the money and with Inej, giving Kaz one week to produce the real Kuwei. Wylan and Jesper see that Kaz is scheming. He vows to get back his money and Inej. 

Chapter 45: Pekka 

Kaz visits Pekka Rollins at his office in the Emerald and asks for a favor. Rollins remembers that Kaz had inexplicably freed him from his cell at the Ice Court, saying he wasn’t meant to die there and assuring him that he would pay for the favor someday. Rollins figures Kaz has come to collect.  

Rollins balks when Kaz asks for money until Kaz agrees to sell him his share of The Crow Club and Fifth Harbor. Pekka accepts the deal, giving Kaz a large sum from his safe. But he warns Kaz against confronting Van Eck, predicting that the merchant will use his political power to crush Kaz. After Kaz leaves, Pekka discovers that Kaz pickpocketed him. He wonders if Kaz can manage to take down Van Eck. 


The final chapters relate the aftermath of the heist, in which some of the novel’s main conflicts are seemingly resolved only to be replaced by new conflicts that set the stage for a sequel. For example, the heist seems to have resolved the conflict between Nina and Matthias, who have clearly overcome their differences and declared their loyalty to each other. Matthias has renounced his patriotism, recognizing through his experience with Nina that the drüskelle creed is rooted in lies and hate. Likewise, Nina has overcome her hate for Fjerda, as demonstrated by her sparing of the drüskelle soldiers in response to Matthias’ call for mercy and tolerance. However, Nina’s addiction to jurda parem leaves her future in doubt, leaving readers to wonder if Nina will die or if she and Matthias will live happily ever after. 

The rest of the crew faces new challenges to their survival as well. After escaping the Ice Court with their lives, the crew returns to Ketterdam only to face death once more when Van Eck double-crosses them. The standoff with Van Eck in many ways resembles the Dregs’ encounters with rival gangs early in the novel, with Kaz once again anticipating each of his opponent’s treacherous moves like a chess master. However, Kaz cannot prevent Van Eck from capturing Inej, to whom he has finally (albeit unsuccessfully) professed his feelings. Kaz’s inability to convincingly profess his love for Inej—even though she wants to be with him—suggests that he is still emotionally handicapped by the childhood trauma of losing his brother. Inej’s capture, and Kaz’s vow to rescue her, adds a new twist to the arc of their story and leaves readers wondering if Kaz will one day exorcise his demons and win Inej’s heart.  

Inej’s capture also upends her plan to buy her freedom and sail the high seas punishing slavers. Nina’s healing of the scars from Inej’s tattoo seems to signal that Inej can finally move past the trauma of her captivity and exploitation. However, her capture by Van Eck lands her right back in captivity, once again dependent on Kaz to set her free. But this situation hardly seems hopeless or even unfamiliar. Kaz’s visit to Pekka Rollins in the final chapter proves that he is still several moves ahead of his foes, who underestimate him at their own peril. 

The multiple cliffhangers at the end of the book suggest that the conflicts explored in the novel, both external and internal, will continue to be waged in the future. Although Kaz and his crew achieve many small victories, the heist does not prove transformative in the ways they had hoped. Their circumstances remain much the same, echoing their past traumas and failing to satisfy their desires. Kaz has failed to gain the wealth and vengeance he seeks, Inej again finds herself in captivity, Nina’s life hangs in the balance again, Jesper remains deep in debt, and Matthias remains a traitor to his country. That the end of their journey so closely resembles the beginning highlights the futility of the heist, yet each of the characters has been changed by the journey. Wylan and Jesper reveal aspects of themselves they have kept hidden, and in so doing, they build a connection with each other. Nina and Matthias overcome their fractious past and find love. Kaz has a deeper and more urgent understanding of how much Inej means to him. Inej faces the demons of her past and develops a newfound personal power. This incremental growth on the part of each character suggests that their stories are not over, that they have more room to grow, and that new adventures await.