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Fire Forged Friends / Literature

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  • How the Animorphs became friends. Before the meeting with Elfangor, they weren't close - Marco and Jake were best friends, Cassie and Rachel were best friends, but Rachel and Jake weren't close cousins, Cassie and Jake only barely knew each other, and Rachel and Marco only knew of each other. Nobody knew or liked Tobias much, and, of course, they had never met Ax. But as Marco notes, after someone saves your life a couple times, you tend to cut them a little slack.
  • City of Bones by Martha Wells:
    • Khat and Sagai got together after Khat rescued Sagai from cannibalistic Desert Bandits and Sagai then saved Khat from dying of his injuries in the Waste. Khat was violently antisocial at the time, but still grew into Family of Choice with Sagai's wife and children.
    • Elen first hires Khat as a guide, but they slowly grow into a strong Interclass Friendship as they find themselves thrown into saving the world together.
  • Roland Deschain's second ka-tet in The Dark Tower, very much so. Eddie comes close to murdering Roland in cold blood while in the throes of heroin withdrawal and Susannah, while controlled by her Detta Walker persona, tries to kill both of them in cold blood several times.
  • From the Deryni works by Katherine Kurtz:
    • Mátyás Furstán becomes such a friend with Kelson, Morgan and Dhugal as a result of their success in foiling Mahael's coup d'etat and Teymuraz's attempt to murder Mátyás in King Kelson's Bride. The process may have begun years earlier when Nigel Haldane protected himself and Mátyás' nephew Liam from assassins in The King's Justice.
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    • Also in King Kelson's Bride, the existing alliance between the Hort of Orsal and Gwynedd is strengthened, and the formerly tense relations between Tralia (the Orsal's principality) and Torenth moves in this direction. This is in reaction to both an assassination attempt against Kelson and Liam at the Orsal's summer palace of Horthánthy and the need to pool resources against the threat of an escaped Teymuraz. Létald says, "It seems we must all trust one another far more than we had planned or dreamed."
  • The Gone series:
    • "Brittney had no romantic feelings for Edilio, but what she had went a lot deeper. She would rather burn for eternity in the hottest fires of hell than let Edilio down. "
    • Dekka and Sam:
    Sam: "I don't want to sound weird, but you know I love you, right?"
    Dekka: " Love you too, Sam."
    • Diana has become this with Astrid and Sam at the end of Light.
  • Harry Potter: Harry and Ron's friendship with Hermione stems from a fight with a troll.
    There are some things you can't go through together without coming out friends, and knocking out a twelve-foot mountain troll is one of them.
    • The battle in the Department of Mysteries in Order of the Phoenix pulls Luna, Neville and Ginny into the group, as well.
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  • In Darkness Visible Lewis and Marsh don't become friends until after the disaster at Wandsworth Prison, the first time they save each other's lives (but not the last).
  • This is how William Laurence makes both of his closest (human) friends in Temeraire.
    • John Granby is initially extremely hostile to Laurence out of friendship to another officer who lost his chance at promotion because Temeraire wanted Laurence for a captain instead. But after being faced with Laurence's heroism and concern for his dragon in Temeraire's first combat action, Granby realizes he was being a Jerkass, apologises to Laurence, and becomes his friend.
    • In Book 3, when Laurence and his crew are ordered to retrieve three valuable dragon eggs from Istanbul, they procure a guide, the half-Nepali Tenzing Tharkay, to get them from Macau to Turkey. Tharkay snarks at them constantly, keeps disappearing randomly, and generally engages in suspicious and somewhat dangerous behavior. When they arrive in Istanbul and get accosted by city guards on their way back from a late dinner, Tharkay and Laurence wind up fleeing the guards in a mad pursuit through a sewer. Once they're safe, Tharkay confesses to Laurence that he acts like a dick to make people open about their racism towards him as opposed to hiding their unfounded suspicion of him passive-aggressively. Laurence asks Tharkay if he's ever given the latter offense, and Tharkay concedes that Laurence has not. It's a Rated M for Manly conversation that cements one of the strongest relationships in the series.
  • Part of the main plot of Honored Enemy, of The Riftwar Cycle by Raymond E. Feist. During the war between Midkemia and the empire of Tsuranuanni, Dennis Hartraft and his company of Midkemian soldiers find themselves pitted against Asayaga, commander of a Tsurani platoon. The plot hook? Both companies find themselves in the territory of the vicious moredhel (dark elves), who are at war with both nations. These circumstances force the Midkemians and the Tsurani to work together to survive. Eventually, despite many fallings-out due to cultural differences and Dennis' pre-existing hatred of Tsurani for personal reasons, the two become loyal friends.
  • Common in Warhammer 40,000 literature:
    • In Dan Abnett's Gaunt's Ghosts novels, while Rawne's hostility to Gaunt lasted through many battles, their work together in the Gereon resistance makes friends of them. (In His Last Command, Gaunt reflects on the strangeness of this.)
    • In Dan Abnett's Brothers of the Snake Antoni and Princeps become rather close after saving each others lives while accompanying Priad on a Dark Eldar hunt.
    • In Blood Pact, Kolea and Baskevyl talk, random chit-chat, in the lock-down when they can't act; they know it means nothing, it just expresses their friendship.
    • In William King's Space Wolf, after desiring Revenge the entire novel, Ragnar sees Strybjorn save his life, and then go down before a Chaos-tainted force. He realizes that he does not, and should not, desire revenge, which is petty in face of their common foes. When Strybjorn lives, Ragaor sends the others, over their objections, to Bring News Back, so that he can treat Strybjorn's injuries and bring him out.
    • In Graham McNeill's Storm of Iron, Captain Eshara speaks of how war brings out the best and the worst in men, and explains that the bond of brotherhood among the soldiers is not to be found in any other way.
    • In Graham McNeill's Ultramarines novel Dead Sky Black Sun, when Leonid saves the Lord of the Unfleshed from being attacked In the Back, the Lord salutes him as "Now you Tribe!" Minutes later, when the Lord saves his life, Leonid thanks him, and the Lord says, "You Tribe."
    • In Graham McNeill's Horus Heresy novel False Gods, the reunion of Torgaddon and Tarvitz makes their friendship from the heat of battle clear to everyone.
    • In Graham McNeill's Horus Heresy novel Fulgrim, the parting of the Iron Hands and the Emperor's Children is sad because their fighting side-by-side had made new friendship and renewed old ones. Fulgrim, the Primarch of the Emperor's Children, and Ferrus Manus, Primarch of the Iron Hands, were good friends (and brothers). They met under Mount Narodnya, where they forged weapons for three months without pause. Fulgrim forged the hammer Forgebreaker, that could level a mountain with a single blow, and Ferrus Manus had forged the sword Fireblade, that forever burned with the fire of the forge.
    • In Ben Counter's Horus Heresy novel Galaxy In Flames, when Tarvitz is trying to warn the betrayed Marines on Isstavan III, he invokes The Power of Friendship to get Garro to believe his word. It is their Fire Forged Friendship that wins him.
      As my honor brother I ask you to trust me like you have never trusted me before. On my life I swear that I do not lie to you, Nathaniel.
      • Later in the same book, Tarvitz tries to join the Emperor's Children partly so he will die with his brothers in defiance of the treachery that separated them from other battle brothers. In the end, he realizes that he knows the names of all the men who are dying with him, even those who were not in his legion. In the face of certain death, he consoles them with the thought that they hurt Horus.
      • In Matt Farrer's "After Desh'ea" (in Tales of the Heresy), Angron laments his dead comrades from the Gladiator Revolt; his War Hounds/World Eaters crave it from him so desperately that Kharn feels envy listening to his account.
    • In Sandy Mitchell's first Ciaphas Cain (HERO OF THE IMPERIUM) novel For the Emperor, the Valhallan 296th/301st is an amalgamation of two regiments that were both depleted by a Tyranid attack... and each regiment collectively hates the other one. One of the first things the titular commissar has to do when he's reassigned there is put down a riot between the two factions through sheer force of will. Afterward, however, thanks to both reforms on Cain's part (including a regimental redesignation to the 597th) and success in its first campaign, the regiment pulls together to become a top-notch fighting force.
      • Amberley also says that Cain has an unusually tight bond with the officers of the regiment, and they come as a comfort to his court marshal at the end of The Traitor's Hand.
    • In James Swallow's Horus Heresy novel The Flight of the Eisenstein, while waiting on a crippled ship to see who the Imperial forces that found them were, Garro, a Space Marine, feels a kinship with the common soldiers also waiting that he had never felt before. When the ship's captain checks what he is saying, Garro urges him to speak: their experiences together should permit candor.
    • In James Swallow's Blood Angels novel Deus Sanguinius, Solus laments having fired on his battle-brothers. (Indeed, in this novel, Rafen must make it clear whenever he refers to Arkio as his brother that he is speaking of a blood relationship on top of their being Blood Angels; everyone's first thought is of this trope.)
      • In Red Fury, after disputes between the Blood Angels and the Flesh Tearers — including a duel between Rafen and Noxx — they are sent on a mission. When frantically trying to escape they are last to get on the shuttle, and Noxx gives Rafen a hand up; in the take-off, Turcio sees Rafen help Noxx keep on his feet. Turcio notes what a change it is — and keeps it to himself. At the end, Noxx admits that he dislikes Rafen a little less.
      • Also in Red Fury, the Flesh Tearer Chapter Master Seth fiercely opposed the request of the Blood Angels Chapter Master Dante and proposed dissolving the Blood Angels, but while they are fighting the Bloodfiends, Seth is knocked so that he is falling in a pit. Shouting "Brother!", rather than "Cousin," Dante grabs him and drags him back. Seth asks if he's worthy of such an address, and Dante asks if he is. At the end, Dante asks the other chapters, again, if they will give him members of their Chapters for the Blood Angels, and Seth declares that they will. He cites the page quote and says that these events have come to pass so that they are reminded that they are not cousins but brothers.
    • In Dan Abnett's Titanicus, when Mechanicus units plug off to fight Chaos despite a schism, one conspirator who engineered the split complains that this trope means they will continue to follow the man leading them into battle.
    • In Lee Lightner's Warhammer 40,000 Space Wolf novel Sons of Fenris, Jeremiah and Ragnar have won each other's respect by the end.
    • In Ben Counter's Soul Drinkers novel Chapter War, Gresk and Pallas are veterans; they join Eumenes's revolt but find it hard to fight battle brothers. Gresk talks to Sarpedon in battle, telling him there is no need to fight, and letting him guess about the orbital attack, and is executed. When Pallas goes to fight Lygris, Lygris thinks he as much wants to be kill as to kill.
    • In C. S. Goto's Blood Ravens trilogy, Rhamah has his doubts about Ahriman, but wavers because they had, after all, fought side by side against the Harlequins.
    • In Andy Hoare's White Scars novel Hunt for Voldorius, we are assured in the epilogue that the events of the novel formed this between the White Scars and the Raven Guard. Although the last actual scene shows that the Raven Guard vanished, leaving the White Scars with plenty of questions, taking the woman who had been prisoner, and the White Scars were rather annoyed.
    • In Nick Kyme's Space Marine Battles novel Fall of Damnos, this happens gradually between the Ultramarines and Damnosian PDF as the Necron threat slowly turns them from defending and defended into friends, and sometimes even battle-brothers.
  • In Jim Butcher's The Dresden Files, the relationship between Harry and Marcone constantly teeters on the brink of this. Harry has to constantly remind himself that Marcone is the leader of the mob (though a nicer mob boss you couldn't hope to find) and his constant, unwavering assistance in battle is a matter of practicality, not any kind of amicable feeling.
    • In Dead Beat, this happens to Harry and Ramirez, as witness Ramirez's saying:
      "Everyone else who lets me ride on their dinosaur calls me Carlos".
      • The same book has Butter going from a friendly work acquaintance and Harry's medical contact to, well, this. Harry saves Butters from zombies and necromancers, Butters saves Harry from a Fallan Angel and a former Denarian. It's all very cordial.
    • One of the short stories is about how Harry met Murphy. He had been hired to track down a runaway child, who had wandered onto a bridge which happened to have a troll living under it. Murphy was nearby to help take it down. In Cold Days, Harry says they've been friends since that moment.
    • Harry and the spirit of Demonreach Island. Quoth Harry:
      "I punched him in the nose. Now we're friends."
  • The Lord of the Rings:
    • In The Fellowship of the Ring, Legolas and Gimli get along rather better after spending time together in Lothlórien after the Battle of Moria. It hit the point that, years and years later when Legolas crossed over sea to Valinor, it's rumored in-universe that Gimli went with him.
    • The Return of the King, Éowyn and Merry after Pelennor Fields and kicking the Witch King's butt.
  • A few adventures together helped Mara Jade get over her hatred of Luke Skywalker. Especially in The Last Command when she killed his clone, freeing her from the Emperor's dying compulsion.
  • John Carter of Mars: In Edgar Rice Burroughs's A Princess Of Mars, John Carter and Kantos Kan forge this during their trials at the Gladiator Games and rescuing Dejah Thoris. In The Gods of Mars, John Carter observes:
    My old friend had won to the highest place in the navy of Helium, but he was still to me the same brave comrade who had shared with me the privations of a Warhoon dungeon, the terrible atrocities of the Great Games, and later the dangers of our search for Dejah Thoris within the hostile city of Zodanga.
  • In Andre Norton's Witch World, Koris and Simon Tregarth, starting with their first meeting. Later the men admit that despite the Falconers' hostility to women and so to the witches, the men of Estcarp have a relationship of less than total hostility, because they're all fighters together.
  • In Wen Spencer's Endless Blue, Turk, knowing that nothing unites better than a common enemy, intends to keep the new Reds away from his veterans until they have a common enemy to unite them. (It goes awry, but that's his intention.)
  • A Song of Ice and Fire: A lot of the Night Watch end up becoming this. Brienne and Jaime might count, although it's not so much forged in battle as being captured and tortured by the Bloody Mummers and it ends up becoming more of a Rescue Romance later on.
  • Maxie, Rosie, and Earl—Partners in Grime. Three kids who don't initially know each other, and are not inclined to get along (especially since one of them is a huge tattletale), end up ditching school together. They argue and get annoyed at each other, but come out of it as friends in the end.
  • Good Omens. Crowley, a demon, and Aziraphale, an angel, are quite obviously going to be enemies. However, after an indeterminate amount of time being Enemies, they came to realize that they had more in common with each other than their actual superiors. Thus, they came to an Agreement. They went from thwarting each other's actions to just going about their own business, with little acts of evil and little acts of good here and there, and occasionally holding down the fort for each other, as well as going out for lunch and drinks now and then over the past few millennia. Their part of the plot of the book is siding with each other again Heaven and Hell with the intent of averting the apocalypse. They also get the bonus points for Back-to-Back Badasses and It Has Been an Honor.
  • Suzanne Collins' The Hunger Games:
    • Katniss is terrified of this because she knows that in the end, she'll have to kill the other to stay alive. She still teams up with Rue, however.
    • To say nothing of the lead boy, who she purposely avoids for most of the games, hoping one of the other characters will do the dirty work for her.
    • Many of the victors in Catching Fire. Which makes the "game" much worse, as the victors have to fight against each other. Then again, many of them are more than ready to kill the others.
    • In Mockingjay there's Katniss and Johanna Mason.
    • It's implied that this also goes for Johanna, Peeta and perhaps Annie Cresta after the three of them were held captive and tortured in the Capitol.
      Johanna: We're old friends. We're very familiar with each other's screams.
  • In Flood, the main characters spent four years together as terrorist hostages. After they get out of their captivity, they maintain lifelong connections due to their shared hell.
  • The Three Musketeers:
    • On d'Artagnan's first day in Paris, he is challenged to duels by Athos, Porthos, and Aramis. Just as the first duel is about to start the group is challenged by four of the Cardinal's guards. D'Artagnan chooses to fight with the Musketeers, and the quarrels are forgotten when he is instrumental to their victory.
    • D'Artagnan and Rochefort spend the first book as nemeses. In an epilogue, it's explained that they fight several duels before ultimately becoming close friends.
  • In Rick Riordan's The Lost Hero, Leo assures Piper that even if Jason regains his memory, their adventures together will assure that they are still friends.
    • All of the Seven grow into this over the course of the series, by the end of The House of Hades even those of them who were the most unwilling in the beginning are True Companions.
  • In Lois McMaster Bujold's Cryoburn, Miles explains their connection to Raven as this, through his and Roic's being kidnapped and escaping together — covering up their older connection.
  • Conan the Barbarian: In "The Scarlet Citadel" Conan muses at the end that while Pelias unquestionably saved his life, his freedom, and his kingdom (both keeping him on the throne and preventing it from falling under an oppressor), he nevertheless never wants to lay eyes on him again. (Then, Pelias is unquestionably a Necromancer.)
    • In "The Shadow Kingdom", Kull feels this toward Brule. (No doubt aided by Brule's being the only one he can know is a real man.)
  • In Dennis McKiernan's novel Dragondoom the two main characters, a female human and a male dwarf, become this. Humans and dwarves hate each other at this point in time and they immediately take a dislike to each other. However, it turns out they are both after the same thing and quickly have to team up to survive attacks from the baddies trying to stop them. Eventually they develop romantic feelings for each other, but never get a chance to say so. Biggest Tear Jerker ending.
  • In Lewis Carroll's nonsense epic The Hunting of the Snark, the Beaver (a valuable crew member, although no one is quite certain why) and the Butcher (who specializes in killing beavers) bond over an arithmetic lesson and their mutual fear of the Jubjub bird.
  • A variant occurs in Fablehaven—the two protagonists, Kendra and Seth, are actually a pair of bickering siblings who never truly seem to get along. However, the trials they endure in Fablehaven bring them closer together, and help them to truly understand one another and become a true Brother–Sister Team. (It helps that Character Development occurs on both sides.)
  • Similarly, The Beyonders by the same author has Jason and Rachel. Although they do connect due to both being "Beyonders" from Earth, Jason is stubbon and Rachel is argumentative, which ends up pretty much like you'd expect. However, they do begin to connect, and Jason gains a great deal of respect for Rachel once she proves just how badly she wants to avert being a Neutral Female.
  • In Jasper Fforde's The Eyre Affair, Joffy muses how at first the war was pleasant, and the camaderie found nowhere else was a big part of it.
  • Elfsong by Elaine Cunningham had Danilo Thann and Elaith "The Serpent" Craulnober fighting together. While they did sort of lend each other weapons, the first time Danilo gave no-nonsense Elaith a sword loudly singing "Elminster's Jest" and the second time he grabbed the elf's inactive Moonblade (the reason of most pain in his life). Elaith had a foul temper in better situations, and both times was close to killing him after the action. So they eventually became Vitriolic Best Buds.
  • In John Hemry's Fearless, after Geary's ship and two others stay to control a hyperspace jump about to be destroyed, there are rumors that Geary had destroyed it, and the captain of the Diamond, one of the other ships, explodes with rage on hearing — he admits to not having thought well of Geary before, but that's a lie, and he would be proud to fight by Geary.
  • Bail Organa and Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Wild Space. They eventually become close friends after driving each other crazy for weeks while cooped up on a starship, surviving the crash of said spaceship at the hands of the Sith, trekking through hostile wilderness, coping with Obi-Wan's reliving of his most horrific memories and keeping each other going despite considerable injuries. The two men end up trusting each other implicitly, despite their considerable differences.
    • Gavin Darklighter and Asyr Sei'lar. The first meeting between the two nearly results in Gavin getting executed for (perceived) bigotry despite the arguments of former attorney Nawara Ven, but a raid by Imperial stormtroopers intervenes. Gavin instinctively pulls Asyr out of the way just as the raid begins, allowing Asyr to realize she was wrong about Gavin being a bigot. They stick together until they escape the raid, and maintain a strong relationship afterward.
  • In the Dale Brown novel Shadows of Steel, this happens between Tony Jamieson and Patrick McLanahan. The former is most displeased by having to fly with who he sees as a disgraced now-civilian, while the latter is aloof and mission-focused. They eventually bond during their mission.
  • In War Maid's Choice the Sothoii who fought beside the hradani infantry against three devils and a horde of ghouls don't take kindly to insults against their former enemies, and those who fought beside Leanna and the other war-maids in an apparently hopeless defense of the king, including the king no longer find disparaging remarks about them all that funny either.
  • In Michael Flynn's The January Dancer, at one point Hugh remembers this forming during the civil war.
  • In the Artemis Fowl series, Artemis and Holly's relationship goes from kidnapper and victim (1st book) to reluctant allies (2nd and 3rd books) to friendship (4th book onwards).
  • In Robin McKinley's Sunshine, Sunshine and Constantine.
  • In Sarah A. Hoyt's Draw One in the Dark, after Tom's rescue, he, Rafiel, and Keith have a strange camaraderie that he reflects on.
  • In Andre Norton's Storm Over Warlock, Thorvald's manner toward Shann during the course of the novel is often brusque, despite a couple of After Action Patchups, but he is obviously friendly at the end when he explains Shann's Field Promotion.
    • In Forerunner Foray, when Ziantha escaped the mental Time Travel but Turan did not, she mourns and reflects on how for the first time, she had known an equal, and thought it was like the bond between crewmen or Patrol who had faced a common danger.
  • In Bernard Cornwell's Sharpe's Triumph, Sharpe reflects on how he and McCandless are as close to friendship as is possible between a sergeant and a colonel — not because of a battle, but because they had been prisoners together.
  • Brotherband has the Heron brotherband, a Ragtag Bunch of Misfits who band together in the goal of succeeding at brotherband training.
  • Rose Hathaway and Mia Rinaldi from Vampire Academy, were enemies until their captivity in Spokane in Frostbite. After saving each other's lives they became good friends.
  • The Stranger Beside Me: Ann speculates that she and Ted became friends because they worked together at the crisis hotline so often.
  • Averted in Steel Dragons of a Luminous Sky by Brian Trent. The protagonist gets shot In the Back by a compatriot during World War II. When he mentions this trope she just sneers, "We've known each other a goddam week. You set a low bar for friendship."
  • The Silerian Trilogy: Tansen and Josarian. Also blood brothers.
  • In Transitions the dwarves Arthogate and Thibbledorf Pwent bond over killing undead minions. Pwent was initially hostile to Arthogate, not knowing what to make of him, but fighting their way through hordes of undead on the way to Spirit Soaring does wonders for a blooming friendship between the two.
  • The kids in Mindwarp very much count, after being hunted by aliens. In fact, the end of the series has them all promising to remain friends, whether or not they have powers and whatever else may have changed.
  • Warrior Cats: In The New Prophecy, most of the characters didn't know each other very well and in some cases were openly hostile to each other before their journey - Squirrelpaw and Brambleclaw didn't get along, and Crowpaw was aggressive to everyone (but particularly Brambleclaw due to a border conflict) - but in the end they become true friends due to everything they'd faced together.
  • The Machineries of Empire: Jedao and Cheris slowly come to like each other, even if he's still scheming and she's still unsure whether she should trust him.
  • Wander has Wander and Dagger. When they first meet, Wander saves him from the smilers against her better instincts, and they grow closer and closer over the course of the book until she's willing to risk her life to save him, and vice versa. By the end of the book they've grown into full-fledged Platonic Life-Partners territory, Wander, who's only known by her nickname and insists that Dagger is, too, willingly trades names with him, showing that she trusts him absolutely.
  • In Wolfheart, King Varian Wrynn of Stormwind and Lord Genn Greymane of Gilneas are at odds, although it's mostly Varian disliking Gilneans for abandoning the Alliance during the Third War. Eventually, the two go on a hunt together and end up fighting a bear. The mutual struggle results in them bonding, and Varian ends up leading the Worgen reinforcements in a counterattack against the Horde.
  • Victoria has Captain John Rumford and Imperial Japanese officer Captain Yakahashi Tomo becoming friends as they serve on a joint expedition against a Chinese client state.
  • In Scavenger Alliance, Wall has a definite Stay in the Kitchen mentality and has opposed female officers for years, but Blaze wins his support in becoming deputy leader by calling general justice against Cage (which Wall, as Cage's division leader, couldn't).
  • In One Of Us Is Lying, The "Bayview Four" become this, as a result of being murder suspects, as well as their network of friends and siblings. Their lack of faith in the police investigation convinces them to solve Simon's murder themselves, especially after Nate is wrongly arrested.

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