I tread cautiously on to this question, like an oversized badger climbs a sapling in a hurricane, because I know the TRC fandom has wildly differing readings of our man Kavinsky. But. I’m standing on the sidelines watching someone in real life go through the effects of an abusive relationship right now, and it feels incredibly irresponsible to not answer one of the many Kavinsky asks in my inbox.
Yes, Ronan has much POV in The Raven King. And yes, there is some musing upon Kavinsky’s death, but it’s not touching musing/ mourning. It’s true that Ronan & K shared some touching moments in The Dream Thieves, punctuated by delicate power plays, but it ended with Ronan rejecting Kavinsky and Kavinsky kidnapping the thing Ronan loves more than anything: his younger brother Matthew.
Blue’s narrating when Gansey and Ronan come to 300 Fox Way, discovering that Matthew’s been missing:
Ronan exploded in behind him, and if she hadn’t been able to tell from Gansey, she would’ve known it from Ronan. He was wild-eyed as a trapped animal. When he stopped, he rested his hand on the doorjamb and his fingers crawled up it.
Ronan Lynch does not get wild-eyed — only in this case, he does. Kavinsky knew the one thing that would hurt Ronan more than anything else, and that’s what he went for.
Ronan himself says in his chapter:
Something ill turned over inside Ronan.
One thousand nightmares of Matthew dead. Blood in his curls, blood in his teeth, flies in his eyes, flies in his guts.
and directly after Kavinsky’s death:
The pair of white sunglasses lay in the dust beside Ronan’s toe. He didn’t take them. He just held Matthew tightly, unwilling to let him go just yet. His brain kept replaying the image of Matthew climbing out of the trunk, fire hitting the car, Kavinsky falling —
He’d had so many nightmares of something happening to him.
At one point, the Kavinsky/Lynch dynamic was an explosive but not deadly thing: a sparkler clutched in a dry field. But any credit in the bank Kavinsky might have had was destroyed when he drugged and threatened a family member. The nicest guy in the world is only as big as his abuse, and Kavinsky wasn’t even the nicest guy in the world. The final pages of The Dream Thieves undo 350 pages before it— that’s also how life works, for the record. Endeavor not to kidnap people or stuff them in trunks, because it ruins all the birthday cards that come before.
So. Spoiler alert: Ronan doesn’t forgive Kavinsky. And he never forgets what it felt like to be afraid for his brother. What it felt like to see his worst nightmare brought to life by someone other than himself.
And that is what you’ll find in The Raven King.