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Heartwarming / Words of Radiance

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  • Shallan turning the entire group of deserters around to helping her by simply appealing to the reasons that they became soldiers beforehand, and telling them that they have something worth fighting for again. They charge off to help protect a caravan from being overrun by bandits, and several of them die in battle, but they save the caravan's people. Later, over the pyre for the dead (both caravaneer and deserter) one of the women in the caravan gives them a prayer to burn - not a prayer of grief or sorrow for those who died, but one of thanks.
    The former deserters gathered in front of the flames and looked at the prayer. Then they turned and looked outward, seeing—as if for the first time—the two dozen people standing there watching. Silent in the night. Some had tears on their cheeks; some held the hands of children. Shallan had not noticed the children before, but was not surprised to see them. Caravan workers would spend their lives traveling, and their families would travel with them.
    Shallan stopped just beyond the caravaneers, mostly hidden in the darkness. The deserters didn't seem to know how to react, surrounded by that constellation of thankful eyes and tearful appreciation. Finally, they burned the prayer. Shallan bowed her head as they did, as did most of those watching.
    She left them standing taller, watching the ashes of that prayer rise toward the Almighty.
    • The reaction that many of the deserters and slaver caravan guards have to Shallan drawing their portraits, which show them as better people than they are.
  • Shallan meeting Wit again. While he was trying to influence her when they first met, he apparently underestimated the impact he had on her. One wonders when the last time someone was genuinely glad to see him was. To be specific, Shallan gives Wit a giant bear hug while thanking him for the message and advice he'd given her in the past. Wit, Deadpan Snarker extraordinaire, is described as being speechless and not knowing what to do. Note that is this after he does his usual dry commentary on both Kaladin and Adolin; Wit goes to start on his little act for a third time, and Shallan renders him completely speechless with a hug.
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  • After Kaladin derails the plan to defeat Sadeas, Dalinar is clearly disappointed in him, but Elhokar is furious, and demands he be executed. Dalinar calmly tells him that if he tries, he'll make an enemy of Dalinar. Dalinar has spent the last book and a half (and six years) doing everything he can to strengthen Elhokar's throne and keep Alethkar whole—but he's willing to throw that all away for Kaladin if Elhokar does something stupid.
  • Shortly after the above, as Kaladin is being taken to prison one of the guards escorting him—a random soldier he's never seen before—silently gives him a gesture telling him to be strong. It's a stark contrast to Amaram's army, where everyone was jealous of him (and Amaram's personal guard slaughtered his friends after Kaladin did their job for them).
  • And afterward, as Kaladin is released, he finds that not only is he being released, but Adolin is too. Adolin had come in and demanded to be imprisoned until Kaladin was released, as he too felt Kaladin was imprisoned unjustly, especially after Kaladin had leapt in to save his and Renarin's lives in the two-on-four duel. And this is not long after Adolin and Kaladin had started off with a very testy relationship due to Adolin thinking Kaladin was up to something, and Kaladin's general distrust of light-eyes amplified by him seeing everything wrong with them in Adolin. While they weren't friends yet (not until Shallan cleared the air between them), it marks a turning point in their relationship.
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  • In Part 4, when Kaladin and Shallan fall into the chasms on the Shattered Plains together. Kaladin, still getting over his (justified) Fantastic Racism, tries to tell Shallan that her optimism is easy for someone in her position, only to be given a glimpse of her own Dark and Troubled Past. And then:
    He saw it in her eyes. The anguish, the frustration. The terrible nothing that clawed inside and sought to smother her. She knew. It was there, inside. She had been broken.
    Then she smiled. Oh, storms. She smiled anyway.
    It was the single most beautiful thing he'd seen in his entire life.
  • Gets a nice echo at the end, after Kaladin has revived Syl and defeated Szeth. She asks him for a genuine smile.
    He did. And it felt very, very good.
  • When Kaladin is released from three weeks in prison for accusing Amaram of murder, he finds that Adolin insisted on being imprisoned as well, and refused to leave until he did. Furthermore, Adolin believes his accusations.
    • So did Dalinar, it turns out, speaking volumes for how much honor he has and how much he trusts Kaladin.
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  • Both Dalinar's reaction to Kaladin coming back from the chasms (running the whole way) and Kaladin's reaction to seeing Dalinar for the first time since coming back (getting up and saluting despite not being able to stand without aid). Shows how much they've come to care about each other.
  • Bridge Four welcoming back Shen/Rlain when he's heartbroken from his people embracing stormform and says he has nothing left.
    Skar: Yes you do. You're Bridge Four.
    Shen/Rlain: I'm a traitor.
    Rock: Ha! Is little problem. Can be fixed.
  • Shallan revealing herself as a Surgebinder to Dalinar, despite her own fears, to reassure him that he didn't fail in his quest to refound the Knights Radiant. Dalinar is so moved he actually cries.

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