Iron Flame Verdict: Did Dain always read Violet’s mind when touching her?

Theory verdict: did Dain always read Violet's memories?

Spoiler Warning! Dive in Iron Flame fans, but if you haven’t turned the last page yet, be prepared for some major plot revelations!


The Initial Theory:

Let’s talk about Dain and his touchy-feely moments with Violet in Fourth Wing. There’s a burning question among fans: Every time Dain cups Violet’s face, is he sneaking a peek into her thoughts? The moments are scattered throughout the book, like breadcrumbs leading us to a potential mind-reading feast.

The Touchy Evidence:

  1. Chapter 4, Page 50: Dain’s first face cupping moment. It’s tender, but is there more to it?
  2. Chapter 8, Page 92 & Chapter 9, Page 114: More face cradling! It’s like Dain can’t keep his hands off her – or out of her mind?
  3. Chapter 16, Page 190: Twice in one chapter – Dain’s hands go from her corset to her face. But is it just affection, or something more?
  4. Chapter 17, Page 203: Post-kiss confusion. Is Dain reading her mind to gauge her feelings about their forbidden smooch?
  5. Chapter 20, Page 244: Violet clocks the potential mind-reading. Smart girl!
  6. Chapter 27, Page 339 & Chapter 31, Page 405: Violet’s suspicions grow, and a pivotal touch reveals critical battle plans.

The Mind-Bending Verdict:

Hold onto your hats, because it turns out Dain wasn’t always delving into Violet’s thoughts with every touch. The big reveal? It all started accidentally. Dain, so used to being close to Violet, unintentionally tapped into her mind. Ok, so Dain is not such a little b*tch then, right?

Well, sort of…

Here’s where it gets intense: Dain sees that Xaden Riorson is getting too close to Violet and Dain imagines this looming threat. His father, Colonel Aetos, boasts about Lilith Sorrengail (Violet’s mum) meddling with Xaden, sparking fears that Violet could be a target. I mean, can we blame him? He kept trying to tell Violet this but she kept shutting him down. In fact, when you re-read Fourth Wing, you can see that Dain keeps telling her, Violet, you don’t understand, he has a reason to hurt you because of what you mum did.

To protect Violet (so cliche, Dain, so cliche) he does mind-read her memories which leads him to leaking crucial information about Athebyne to his dad…which in turn leads to the Battle of Resson.

The twist? Dain never meant to set off these events (but the road to hell is paved with good intetions, Dain…). He wasn’t aiming to betray Violet or send them into danger. It was a mishap, a tragic twist of fate fuelled by his worry for Violet’s safety and his untamed abilities. Ufff, if only men would learn how to actually COMMUNICATE!

The Verdict

So, Dain’s touch wasn’t always a gateway to Violet’s thoughts. It began as an unintended consequence of their closeness, spiralling into a cascade of events that changed their lives forever. Dain is not a bad guy. Just a bit, well, annoying. He did betray them, though he didn’t do it to kill or hurt anyone, but to protect. Dain needs to learn how to be a critical thinker.

But to Yarros’s credit. They are all 20-23 years old and Dain is basically just a 21 year old that sees his best friend in a lot of danger. He does his best, even though he needs to do a hell of a lot BETTER. And the beauty of the Empyrean Series is that everyone is maturing, growing and learning.

Do we forget Dain? Errr…yes and no. We don’t hate him, but we don’t love him either. He still needs to prove himself a bit more. For now, we just feel a bit sorry for the man, and still want to exclude him from friendly dinners…

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5 responses to “Iron Flame Verdict: Did Dain always read Violet’s mind when touching her?”

  1. Hi Cory

    I did come to Dain’s defense a lot in the theories didn’t I 😂 and originally got it wrong – thinking that he didn’t read her thoughts, but did know that there could be some sort of test at Athebyne. And it was the other way round – but I am so glad that it wasn’t all the time. Actually on my second re-read I did start to think that he might have accidentally read her memories the first time and then wondered how much he did afterwards.

    I do really have a soft spot for Dain. I admit it. It is more a personal choice, because for some reason I prefer his type of character. Don’t get me wrong, I completely love characters like Xaden, Rhys (ACOTAR), Rowan (Throne of Glass) – my biggest experience of this type of genre up until now has been Sarah J Maas 😆 (I am expanding my authors) – love them to bits, but I tend to find more interest in characters like Dain who from the start are well intentioned and very loyal, but their need to protect or their loyalty is either misguided or leads them to act in a way that was never their original intention and unfortunately this leads to dire consequences. My favourite character from Throne of Glass is Chaol, who I can see a lot of in Dain – both are extremely loyal and have a strong need to protect those that they care about. It is the growth in this type of character that I love, especially when they realise that their loyalty has been misguided and start grow in their support for the FMC and MMC as well face their own demons (mainly from an overpowering/manipulative father figure).

    I really hope Rebecca Yarros develops his character further in book 3 and the characters begin to trust him more – his slight emotion at the last battle brief in IF when he sees the infantry got me a bit, I believe that he does have a lot of compassion. Though I worry about his outcome a bit on whether he will survive to graduate in book 3, but if he doesn’t, I hope he takes his father out with him 😡

    I wondering how the interaction with his father is going to go – I’m sure that his father is pissed that he sided with Xaden & Violet and that he was the one to attack Varrish first, but there will also be Dain’s complete horror in what his father has been involved in. Hopefully there will be some sort of showdown 🤣

    But I tell you one thing – when it really came down to it, I knew he would break the rules to save someone he really cares about and that was a big one!!!

    1. Oh Emma, the moment I read Dain redeeming himself I thought HA, you’re going to love it and be so happy about it. You were a true Dain supporter and I am honestly happy he turned out to not be a terrible character.
      I guess Dain grew up with Colonel Aetos and learnt to be a stickler for rules. He didn’t see the forest from the trees, but luckily, he did come true. He did break the rules right when it was most needed. I do like his loyalty and his growth, and it explains it why Yarros was such a Dain apologist. 🙂 We get it now!
      I think we will see so much of Dain moving forward. Do you think he will die? If so (altho I hope not, really!), you are right, it should be by taking his shitty dad down with him. I cannot wait to see Colonel Aetos making faces when he realises that his precious Dain is done with his stuff.

      1. I hope he doesn’t as well. I am just worrying how sinister Colonel Aetos actually is. At first I thought he was just part of leadership covering up the truth (with a ruthless edge to him in covering it up). But now thinking about how the boxes were placed at Athebyne to draw the venin to them and now with a comment in the venin General theory that you have that mentions that the 1st year assassin who killed Nadine had red rimmed eyes which indicates that he was venin (didn’t pick up on that) – how much is he involved with the venin. Hopefully there is more of a story there.

        1. Oh Emma! I think I’ve found something else that would iterate the idea that general venin is actually from Tyrrendor.
          Page 540 -> oh shit is that why wyvern have suddenly reappeared? Did someone give the venin runes?

          I mean it’s not taught at basgiath. And riders don’t learn this(at least not the ones from Basgiath)…but marked ones know runes because everyone in Tyrrendor knows runes. Interesting..

          1. Good find – I had noted that bit for future review, but I think I was more focusing on the wards failing at the time and the wyvern waking again and not so much on the venin/rune part. Very interesting indeed.

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Hello! This site is dedicated to the Empyrean Series by Rebecca Yarros. I’ve made this place to explore the rich world of Empyrean, full of characters, theories, and places. Each post is carefully researched and updated with the newest details from the series. This site is also a great spot for discussing theories about the Empyrean Series. 🐉
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