We are introduced to our other main character Wes, who will, looking at how the book is going to far, probably be the male love interest. Oh and look at that, he’s 16! Surprise!
Oh, and he’s also the sandy hair, warm brown eyes and hot but angsty teen! OMG! HE’S SMIRKING! OMG HE HAS MUSCLES! OMFG HE’S WEARING TORN JEANS!
He’s hungry and somewhat upset that he won’t get a meal because he turned down that job that was offered to him that included a meal with it. Why’d you turn down the job then? For shits and giggles?
There were white tablecloths and real silverware.
Oh, so we can’t have yellow tablecloth or blue tablecloth. And tell, me. What ensues as REAL silverware? Are we getting like…. mutant forks and spoons instead in most places? Knives that cut with the handle and are held at the blade? Or do you just have a problem with plastic spoons bitch?
We find out that time has moved forward by 1 week and the bombed casino still has it’s guts spilling out. The only thing they’ve done is add heaters to the hole to block out the eternal cold.
Wait. If getting fucking bombed is a common thing, wouldn’t you think that the place would have been fixed already? Also, there has been no reason whatsoever about why the hell bombs just get randomly dropped into a thriving city at random intervals and people aren’t fleeing the city in fear and instead are going on and about their daily lives as if waking up the next morning possibly dead isn’t a big deal.
This world building. I just can’t.
And then……….. it turns out they’re sitting at a restaurant/bar the whole time and guy offering Wes the job goes ahead and orders beef as to probably flaunt his money and status because in a world where everything’s freezing, the only meat that’s abundant is fish. Beef is extraordinarily expensive and rare and all cows are raised in temperature controlled stables.
1. Why don’t you just order your own goddamn food?
2. IF THERE ARE NO COWS, THEN WHERE THE HELL ARE THEY GETTING THEIR VEGGIES? COWS CAN SURVIVE LOWER TEMPERATURES THAN PLANTS. WITHOUT VEGGIES EVERYONE IS SURE AS FUCK DEAD. ALSO YOU’LL GET MAJOR ASS CONSTIPATION IF YOU ONLY EAT MEAT. THERE ARE ONLY VEGETARIANS FOR A REASON.
Also, cows can survive 40 below temperatures, so the whole temperature controlled stables is just a waste of energy. It’s obvious here that the author did not do her research because a simple Google of “Can cows live in cold weather?” gives you this as the FIRST RESULT.
As the conversation continues, we’re told that Wes is OMFG BADASS! because he was the leader (at 16) of the best mercenary team in the city until he refused to torch a hotel, which sounds like a rather trivial thing to do compared to the other things he’s probably been asked to do. Of course, you don’t know because other than refusing to torch the hotel and refusing this job (kidnapping a CEO) nothing’s been told of any of the other “badass” things he had to do.
Mr. I-Get-To-Eat-Beef guy tries to convince Wes with the old “you need money and this job is nothing” trick and Wes refutes with “guilty conscience”. Except for, when your Mr. Badass Mercenary Dude who’s so good your famous as 16, guilty conscience shoulda long been a problem of the past.
Oh and we finally get an explanation for the bomb but not for why people aren’t fleeing the city. “Marked factions”, which I’m assuming is referring to marked people like Nat, bombed the casino which is why Beef Dude is asking Wes to do this job. And that has to do ??? with kidnapping a CEO.
And then the author does a massive info dump about the races of people in this world. Basically, marked people (like Nat) can read minds and shit. There are “smallmen”, aka DWARFS, YOU FUCKER. There were these things called slyphs who are gorgeous blonds with beautiful singing voices and draus, who are supposedly evil albino slyphs who can kill with their minds.
Returning to the scene, there’s even more padding and Wes is starting to get second thoughts, because why not? He finds out it’s not kidnapping it’s killing and Mr. Badass goes “Oh no you didn’t!”
He’d done a lot to survive, but he wasn’t a paid killer.
So, never, has the top mercenary team killed a single human? That. Is. Unbelievable.
Mr. Beef Guy waits for an answer and we find out, via info dump that the USA is now the RSA, Remaining States of America. Even though it’s also constantly expanding via military victories… so… uh… yeah?
You find that Mr. Badass wants to actually be a sculptor, because it’s SO ROMANTIC. He gets food anyways because Mr. Beef Dude orders some for him and muses over how authentic and amazing it is compared to pizza and canned food. Uh, dur, what’d you expect?
But he won’t take the job, so “lol, jk, I’d rather waste food that shouldn’t be wasted than kill someone because somehow I still have integrity.” which is complete bullshit considering he’s the top mercenary team leader.
At this point, the author is just trying to plop likable characteristics onto a “badass” character that completely contradict with what the character does.
Bradley (Mr. Beef Guy) leaves angrily and tells him to get use to starving.