Firefight (The Reckoners, #2) Firefight discussion

If David turned into an Epic

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message 1: by Jim (new)

Jim Chu Just wondering what people think, if David did got turned into an Epic, what power would he have? calamity said he would give david powers that are "thematically appropriate".

message 2: by ReaderGuy (last edited Jan 25, 2015 03:16PM) (new)

ReaderGuy I dunno about David. I thought he was going to turn into and Epic and wake up the next day, just like Regalia said. I actually would have really liked that, the self-loathing and guilt would have been really interesting. If he had been a High epic, even more so, because he would have been unable to kill himself. I get why he didn't do that, but I don't like that Sanderson's explanation was that he just said no to Calamity. It seems really cliche and a really cheap way out.

However, David may actually have still gained powers and not realized it. Remember how the Spiril didn't work very well after he almost turned into an epic? Proph did mention something about how Epic powers might interfere with some technology (although David was skeptical and seemed to think it was just an excuse). On the other hand, his ability to receive powers from Proph seems to indicate he is still normal. So, he may or may not have powers, but if he does have them, they are latent.

So, in light of that, I hope that Sanderson builds more on the significance of David not turning into an epic, as it seems like it was very important to Regalia. It also was not explained how Epics get enhanced powers.

Personally, if he had turned into an Epic, I think his powers would have been one of two things: Either very similar to Steelheart's (the reason: Calamity agreed to make David an Epic was the "poetic irony. Gaining the powers of the very epic who killed his father, and his reason for killing epics would fit that very well). The second would be a power that fits his name: Steelslayer. Destructive powers that could destroy even steel easily (like lasers, high pressure water, stuff like that) would also be very fitting. In addition, his nickname granted because of his work with the Reckoners becoming his Epic name would also be poetic irony.

It's still possible he will get powers later on, but Sanderson may be trying to keep him a vanilla human, as the story is about humans fighting epics. However, here is my reasoning for his getting powers in Book 3 or later: 1. Megan probably now knows everything David does about Calamity and has proven his theory about Epics and corruption. He therefore does not have to be good anymore so he can preserve this critical information. 2. Calamity seems taken an interest in David. David is also the only person aside from Regalia, who is now dead, who has talked with Calamity. 3. Since Megan is now good, she could guide him through getting his corruption under control. 4. DawnsLight's message to David about dreams seemed to suggest that David will have nightmares, or maybe dreams in which he interacts with Calamity.

message 3: by infael (last edited Jan 26, 2015 07:26AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

infael Sanderson was pretty focused on David's charisma and optimism, in Firefight. So...Epic powers for David could be


None of the above may seem very powerful, but if you think about the ability to talk someone out of trying to kill you, or into giving up; a gun jamming, someone saving you from drowning, survivng a 100 foot free-fall, well, small things can be pretty powerful.

Re the "irony" of David becoming an Epic, I think that's more about how David feels about Epics and not so much about what Epic power David would get.

Matthew Jagen @ReaderGuy I don't think that david simply said "no" to calamity, but what really made it so that he was able to choose not to get powers is because he faced his fears of the depths when (spoilers) he let regalia let the water in so he could save megan. Similar to how megan was able to control her anger and not get corrupted after facing her fears to "save David" from the burning building.

This also makes me wonder what could calamity's weakness is? If he's making people epics so they can face their fears, what would he fear? would he fear fear?

message 5: by ReaderGuy (new)

ReaderGuy Well, it's been implied that his refusal will be important.

Anyways, I don't know if Calamity has a weakness. This is just my speculation, but I think he may be a "fully developed" Epic. Think of it like this: All Epics start out violent, some eventually confront their fears and are freed from the corruption. They gradually mature until they reach an "adult" state like Calamity, where they can awaken/give powers to regular humans.

Granted, the whole Epic life cycle thing doesn't seem to be Sanderson's style, but I DO think that Calamity may be a neutral Epic. He only creates Epics, he has done nothing actively to destroy or conquer people. While he may not be benign, I think it's more than possible he is free from the corruption of his powers.

Alayna Ringsby It's good that David refused because he is setting an example for other epics so that they know that they don't have to give in. David did not give in to Calamity or Regalia and rejected his powers, so that is good! David probably should not be an epic. He would probably be good but it might be a little dangerous.

Hard to know what his power would be just because he conquered his fear of water so that would probably not be it. Maybe something to do with people. Maybe they would be something like Prof's, since they have a lot of similar thoughts and feelings...

message 7: by Donna (new) - added it

Donna I'm glad David refused the "offer" to become an Epic. I think it would defeat the purpose of the books, really. Having Prof as an Epic in the Reckoners only worked because he gifted his power away to others. Reminds me of Gandalf refusing to the take Ring of Power.

"With that power I should have power too great and terrible. And over me the Ring would gain a power still greater and more deadly....Do not tempt me! For I do not wish to become like the Dark Lord himself. Yet the way of the Ring to my heart is by pity, pity for weakness and the desire of strength to do good. Do not tempt me! I dare not take it, not even to keep it safe, unused. The wish to wield it would be too great for my strength. I shall have such need of it. Great perils lie before me."

message 8: by Eslam (last edited Feb 03, 2015 03:23AM) (new)

Eslam Amkte Actually that was pretty hypocrite of him , David have been fucking with the professor head the whole damn book that he can be the hero everyone waiting for, that he can fight whatever making him want to kill , that's he believe in him [Even to the very last scene which make no fucking sense] bla bla and when he offered the very damn thing and have chance to prove his bullshit he simply say no? really?!

message 9: by Morgan (new)

Morgan Beldyk I agree with Eslam, I enjoyed the book but I thought it was kind of out of character for him to refuse the epic powers. The whole book he's trying to convince everyone and their mom that there can be good epics, that they don't need to become slaves to their urges, but when he's given the chance to not only put his money where his mouth is but also potentially gain abilities that would really help the reckoners in the long run, he turns it down? "Sure, Megan and Prof, you guys have to fight your impulses all the time and be good guys, but no, not me, I'll just sit here like one of the normals, thanks." Jerk.

message 10: by ReaderGuy (last edited Feb 08, 2015 04:49PM) (new)

ReaderGuy You guys both have valid points. David choosing to reject powers is in some ways hypocritical of his new vision for ending Epic domination. Accepting the need for Epics to fight Epics totally blasts his former principal of rejecting the inclusion of Epics into the resistance out of the water. It also taints Sanderson's obvious excuse for not giving David powers: It's supposed to be about normal people overcoming Epic oppression. Except David has openly stated there is no way to win without Epic help. Granted, the justification remains valid on the argument that by allowing an ordinary human to help Epics overcome their corruption, ordinary people are still overcoming Epics, just not in the physical sense of the word.

On the other hand, David was just told by Regalia that he would kill a bunch of people in a blind rage if he got Epic powers. As interesting as watching him deal with the guilt and irony of becoming one of the monsters he fights would be, he choose to reject Epic powers because he knew if he got them, he probably would kill his friends and countless innocents. However, his horror at becoming an Epic does reveal that despite wanting to help Prof and Megan become heroes, the idea of becoming an Epic himself still disgusts and horrifies him at some level. It makes him a more human character, because his choice was motivated both out of care for his friends and some remaining hate towards Epics, despite recent revelations. Someone can't totally change in such a short time after spending the majority of his life seething with hatred for Epics.

Theory: All Epics make a choice by initially using their powers. The difference is, they have no idea what is going on and do not really realize what they are doing, and even if they did, there is a deal of temptation to take the power. David did know what was going on and was able to fight off the temptation.

Another Theory: There is no choice in becoming an Epic, but an Epic can chose not to use their powers. David, by not using his powers at manifestation, forced them into a dormant state. They are totally inert, so he can still receive powers from a Gifter because they cause no interference. In the third book, David will be put in a life and death situation where his powers will awaken at some point.

Third Theory: David is somehow significant to Calamity. Perhaps it has something to do with his father (the conclusion always has some shocking revelation we didn't see coming. His dead father having some relationship with Calamity is as good a revelation as any). David was given a choice or able to refuse powers because there is something special about him. At some point in the third book, he will gain some special ability, either powers beyond those of ordinary Epics, or he will become able to nullify the powers of Epics. He will persuade Calamity to leave or help him, kill Calamity, usurp Calamity's power, or come to some similar conclusion.

Tyler **Post contains spoilers if you haven't finished the book**

Hey guys, I love the discussion that is going on here.

My thoughts on whether or not the people being made Epics have a choice or not.. I think Sanderson made it pretty clear that they do have a choice, but it depends on their strength of character. Since the epic powers are somehow tied to your fears, David was able to deny Calamity because he was able to conquer his fear of the particular power that Calamity attempted to offer him. When people are offered power, it's in our nature to take as much of it as we're able to.

Completely disagree with Margaret's comments above that he was a jerk or a hypocrite in not accepting the powers (sorry Margaret!)

If David does eventually gain powers I think it will be something that allows him to become an opposing force to Calamity.. perhaps he becomes an equally-powerful gifter that is able to give people powers that don't drive them to become monsters?

Thinking of the end of the first Mistborn series..

infael Maybe David's father had a hand in creating Calamity.

message 13: by Sawyer Dale hays (new)

Sawyer Dale hays I believe that in resisting corruption from the power by saying no. He will become what his father new would become. I think he will become the first good. Non corrupt epic

message 14: by HeyItsNabzzz (last edited Apr 21, 2015 07:27PM) (new)

HeyItsNabzzz Tyler wrote: "**Post contains spoilers if you haven't finished the book**

Hey guys, I love the discussion that is going on here.

My thoughts on whether or not the people being made Epics have a choice or not...."

The Mistborn series is exactly what I was thinking of from the beginning! I have always compared Calamity with the red sun in Scadrial. I wonder how the third Reckoners book turns out? I hope it isn't close to the ending of the Mistborn Trilogy. It wouldn't be as exciting then.

But wow, David as an Epic. I was a little terrified at how that would have turned out. I agree with everybody who said David's refusal of the powers was a little cheap. And I also agree with Eslam and Margaret. Now that you've mentioned it, it was a little hypocritical of him to do so.

message 15: by Chris (new)

Chris Schell I may be late to the comment party.

But I don't think the not gaining powers was a cheap thing. I also don't think David actually 'had a choice' I think that calamity needed to find fear to give David a power, and since David has so far as I've read, faced every fear he's ever had, Calamity had nothing to work with. David is often described as having 'reckless heroism' but I would describe him as courageous. Obliteration, Phaedrus, Steelheart, The dark black sea. David faces each one knowing full well that he could die at any time.
Calamity was going to make his weakness water, but when David looked into the black depths, he was not afraid

message 16: by Arbré (last edited Jul 27, 2015 05:06PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Arbré Écorce Is it possible that David has some power that is inherently different than the ones the Epics use. It seems like a long shot but (several book spoilers) (view spoiler)

Maddi I think David would be mature enough to become an epic and not become evil. Plus seeing Megan would change his whole view of being a epic so...

message 18: by ReaderGuy (new)

ReaderGuy Possibly, Arbre, but this is supposedly a separate universe from the one his other books take place in. Sanderson is taking a different approach. It's possible that David will get powers derived from a different source than Calamity, but it's not really necessary. Epic powers can be practically anything, so having another source of powers doesn't really achieve anything. So, yes, he could do it, but it really wouldn't make sense if he did.

On the subject of Calamity, perhaps the fact he appeared one year before the Epics started manifesting powers is somehow significant?

Calamity is a person who suddenly (for whatever reason) gets Epic powers. Before he does crazy, he goes into space. Over the course of a year, he tries to get a handle on his anger. He then discovers that by creating Epics, he can reduce his own violent tendencies. That's why he creates only a few new Epics to replace the ones killed off. He agrees to turn David into an Epic because his killing Epics means he has to create new ones and he is angered by his interference.

Theory: Calamity is actually the most "advanced" Epic. His ability to grant powers comes from the fact that in the year he appeared, he progressed beyond ordinary Epics. His ability to create new Epics is derived from this.

"Mature" Epics develop the ability to create new Epics.

Lester Smith iii ReaderGuy wrote: "Well, it's been implied that his refusal will be important.

Anyways, I don't know if Calamity has a weakness. This is just my speculation, but I think he may be a "fully developed" Epic. Think of..."

It's possible that since he's a gifter he doesnt get corrupted.

Shima I'm not sure if we can count Calamity as not corrupted, I mean just looking at his talks with Regalia, he didn't seem to be exactly on the side of the good guys. He was obviously mad at David for killing so many epics.

I know this is a long shot, But could Calamity being in space somehow be related to Tia working in NASA?
I mean, that whole story about the other teacher getting picked to train for being an astronaut seemed a bit weird and out of place to me, unless Sanderson meant it as foreshadowing.

Arbré Écorce Shima wrote: "I'm not sure if we can count Calamity as not corrupted, I mean just looking at his talks with Regalia, he didn't seem to be exactly on the side of the good guys. He was obviously mad at David for k..."

You are probably right

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