*ACOMAF SPOILERS* could u clarify what happened at the end of chapter 9/beginning of chapter 10? i thought that feyre's spring magic had exploded, decimating the room, but i was looking in the acomaf tag and it seems ppl think that is not the case? idk what do u think/ can u explain it to me
Hello, Nonnie! Of course, I’d be glad to help!
What happened in this scene was actually a result of Tamlin losing control over his emotions and powers, not Feyre. When Feyre tells Tam that his actions–the guards, the isolation, the restrictions on her movement–are drowning her, he becomes incredibly upset and just loses it. His power explodes out of him, shattering the windows, destroying/exploding the furniture, and very nearly hurting Feyre as well. (Tamlin has always had trouble controlling his powers/anger/rage [as evidenced in ACOTAR with those talons of his] and now we finally see what happens when he loses control–and it isn’t pretty.)
In fact, Feyre could have been incredibly hurt if it hadn’t been for the shield she instinctively threw up to protect herself: the shield of air spinning around her. This is why she is so shaken up. It is the realization that Tamlin had very nearly hurt her, and the only thing that protected her wasn’t a shield he put up for her, but her own. The air between them acts as her only shield from that rage and power; it is the “line between chaos and order, danger and safety.” In this moment, Tamlin transforms from her safety to her danger–and that is devastating for her.
And Tamlin is devastated as well. He realizes that he could have seriously harmed her–even killed her in that moment–and he begs for forgiveness. “I’ll try to be better […] Please–give me more time. Let me…let me get through this. Please.” He is begging for forgiveness–not only for the emotional abuse, but also for the potential physical harm he almost caused her in this scene. Tamlin has transformed from the protector to the danger, and in doing so, Feyre and Tamlin’s relationship makes an undeniable and dangerous shift.
Because this moment also calls forth the shadow of physically abusive relationships. The emotional abuse that was inherent in the first few chapters–the isolation, the disregard for Feyre’s wants and needs, the emphasis on what Tamlin wants over hers–takes a shuddering step toward the threat of physical abuse. It calls forth the image of those relationships where, although the two love each other, one physically hurts the other. Emotions run high and one person snaps, and he/she harms the other. The line is crossed from safety to danger, and that trust has been breached. How can Feyre feel safe? Tamlin may not have meant it, and he may be sorry, but we (and Feyre) cannot deny the fact that he almost hurt her–and the only thing that stopped him wasn’t himself, but Feyre’s own instinct for self-preservation.
This moment is a tipping point–a turning point–and it foreshadows things to come. This is why it’s so important, and why Feyre cannot stop shaking, and why at the end of the scene, Feyre focuses on the red paint “splattered on the wall”–focuses on it as it “slide[s] down the cracked wood paneling.” This red paint that looks like blood. This scene–the loss of control, the fury and rage, and Feyre’s own desperate attempt to protect herself–represents a moment of physical abuse, and the spiraling of their relationship.
I know this got a bit long, Nonnie, but I hope it helped explain this scene and whose power was doing what! :)