|Skulduggery Pleasant: The Dying of the Light|
|Skulduggery Pleasant: The Dying of the Light|
|Cover Artist||Tom Percival|
|Date Published||28th August 2014 (Hardback), 26 March 2015 (paperback)|
|Date Set In||A few weeks after Last Stand Of Dead Men|
|No. of pages||605|
Last Stand of Dead Men
Skulduggery Pleasant: The Dying of the Light is the ninth book in the series. Derek Landy confirmed that the ninth book will be about the Darquesse vision that was forseen in Dark Days and set in motion during Last Stand Of Dead Men.  He completed the book on May 21st, 2014. On Monday, the 16th of June, 2014, the front cover of the book was uploaded. A limited edition cover was also released. A Black Edition, limited to 1000 copies will be hidden in Waterstones Stores. The Back Cover art was revealed on Tuesday, the 19th of March.
The War of the Sanctuaries has been won, but it was not without its casualties. Following the loss of Valkyrie Cain, Skulduggery Pleasant must use any and all means to track down and stop Darquesse before she turns the world into a charred, lifeless cinder.
The war may be over, but the final battle is about to begin. And not everyone gets out of here alive...
Danny, an owner of a general store in the idle town Meek Ridge delivers the week's grocery supply to Stephanie, now 24, who has been residing there in hiding for the past five years.
(Five years ago, a week after events of Last Stand of Dead Men) At a general store, Stephanie (the reflection) wielding the Sceptre of the Ancients confronts an American sorcerer, Ferrente Rhadaman, whose powers were recently boosted by the Accelerator and tries convincing that it's dangerous and they need to reverse the effects of the Accelerator. He denies giving up the power and reveals that Darquesse has been killing off his friends but Skulduggery steps in threatening to kill him off. Rhadaman's friends, the Hollow Men attack Stephanie while Skulduggery subdues Rhadaman and arrests him. Stephanie, as well as Skulduggery, tries to deal with the fact that she is simply an impersonation of Valkyrie.
Stephanie and Skulduggery arrive at the Sanctuary situated at the centre of the newly founded Roarhaven which was constructed in a parallel dimension and shunted to the current one. Stephanie meets the Engineer, who is working in order to deactivate the Accelerator, which is set to implode in two weeks, potentially multiplying the power of every sorcerer by twenty times. Stephanie also learns that Clarabelle has been denied the job as assistant to the doctors. Reverie Synecdoche gifts the Deathtouch Gauntlet to Stephanie stating that it will bring the instantaneous death of Darquesse and all it takes is one touch but Stephanie denies and states that she'll never wear that Gauntlet.
Skulduggery and Stephanie meet China, the newly appointed Grand Mage in the Hall of Prism, who informs them that Scrutinous, Dexter, Saracen and International Sanctuaries have taken care of the boosted sorcerers and only four remain hidden and may be offered asylum by a potentially opposing Sanctuary. Vincent Foe makes an appearance and China asks him to get her into the Church of the Faceless Ones as she wants to wade against Eliza Scorn and throw her out to seek vengeance. Foe, desiring to get rid of his debt to China agrees and leaves. China asks about the whereabouts of Darquesse upon which Skulduggery proposes two ideas. Firstly, shunting Ravel and holding him as a bait for Darquesse to attack or secondly tracing Tanith or Sanguine, Darkquesse's companions.
Sanguine considers finishing off Darquesse with the God-killer dagger while she's hibernating but decided to put it off a bit to keep things cool between him and Tanith. Tanith considers killing Sanguine as he does not see Darquesse as his Messiah as the remnant in Tanith does.
Stephanie returns home and talks to her father, Desmond about the memory stick given by a stranger to him a few days ago and confirms that he hasn't checked it's contents. Stephenie and Fletcher make out and confide that they are in a relationship.
Stephanie and Skulduggery meet Cassandra Pharos, the Sensitive in order to foresee the possible events in the future where they glimpse Stephanie, wielding the DeathTouch Gauntlet fighting off against Darquesse trying to defend her family at the Sanctuary but in vain. In the vision, Darquesse also kills off Skulduggery for trying to intervene and notices Stephanie looking into the future.
Sanguine is horrified to watch Darquesse's carnage and the harvest of human souls in order to extract information from them. Darquesse sets on a new mission requiring freeing the Remnants with Tanith. The receptacle was never lost but still heavily protected at McGillicuddy's Reek by a few sorcerer and Cleavers. Sanguine tries to convince Tanith that Darquesse is becoming insane and might kill them both and that Tanith needs to recover her true self from the Remnant taking the aid of the sorcerer Morybund and that she too wants this. Tanith questions herself but disregards her thoughts and follows Darquesse.
Stephanie and Skulduggery return to the Sanctuary prison in order to speak to Creyfon Signate, who pleads about being innocent during the War of Sanctuaries, one of the best Shunters in the world and crack a deal. Skulduggery accept to free him forgiving all his past crimes if he is able to teleport Eskrine Ravel into a 'Kingdom of Wicked' dimension using the Deadlock Sceptre of Ancients so that the link between Darquesse and Ravel will be broken and she will come back to harass Ravel and the Sanctuary will seize the opportunity to subdue her. Creyfon Signate agrees to do Skulduggery's bidding and promises to find the frequency after vibing the Sceptre.
Darquesse and Tanith free one of the Remnants after killing off the sorcerer and Cleavers guarding it and use the sorcerer, Maksy, as a host for the freed Remnant. Tanith seems uncertain about freeing the remainder but still complies with Darquesse.
Scapegrace is in a state of self-pity as he has just become another commoner and has do nothing remarkable. He confesses to Thrasher and Clarabella that he's tired of his new appearance. Clarabella informs them that the Medical Wing at the Sanctuary still has their original bodies which they may be able to restore.
Stephanie and Skulduggery capture Axel, a friend of Sanguine, a top contributed to rebuilding the destroyed Roarhaven and convict him for the murder of a colleague. Axel tells them that Sanguine has a house at Stoney after, Norsemen Palace
Sanguine watches along as Darkquesse talks to the Remnant Nestor Tarry who informs her that the 'Hessain Grimore' will educate her about deeper magical powers and strengthen her further, also she will be able to confront Argiddeon who has been memory wiped by the Sanctuary and steal his ideology. Sanguine confronts Stephanie as she destroys the Remnant and reforges him establishing control over his atoms. Horrified, Sanguine makes up an excuse and scurries off only to be held at gunpoint by Skulduggery.
Sanguine makes a deal with Skulduggery offering 3 of the 4 God-killer weapons as they have a common enemy, Darquesse and that Sanguine has no intention of dying. He also informs Skulduggery and Stephanie that the Remnants are loose but obeying the command if Darquesse and in check, that Darquesse doesn't trust Tanith anymore and that she's going after the Grimore' to gain a much darker knowledge.
The duo meets up with China at the Sanctuary and inform her of the lately occurring events. She tries to enforce the situation by dealing with the Remnants, Darquesse and the Renegades altogether. China mocks Scorn who has paid her a visit to complain about her infiltration in the church of the Faceless Ones. The three of them decide to get the Grimore' back tonight as they know its location and Darquesse doesn't. Skulduggery talks to Finbar Wong who informs them of his vision in which Valkyrie asked out for help. With the aid of Cassandra Pharos, she tells them that Valkyrie may be subdued by Darquesse and is using the last of her strength to ask out for help and there may be a possible way to subdue Darquesse and bring Valkyrie back but would require enormous Sensitive strength. Also, Stephanie and Cassandra oppose this as it is too risky.
Gracious O'Callahan, Finnegan Bane, Saracen Rue, Dexter Vex and Fletcher are on their monster hunting mission when they track and capture a Remnant possessing a Karate Teacher Mr Noonan with a reinforced soul catcher developed by China but not before he reveals that the Remnants are not so loyal to Darquesse anymore and are heading east to find a suitable town to inhabit.
Skulduggery, Stephanie, Finbar Wong and Cassandra Pharos hold a seance where Valkyrie speaks through Finbar requesting help from Skulduggery. They inform her that there is a way to isolate Darquesse from Valkyries mind and deal with her with the aid of Deacon Maybury. 'The Sparrow Flies South For Winter's is decided as a phrase to trigger Valkyries consciousness and Skulduggery's mood appears to be lifted by this new hope. He promises to act against Darquesse very soon subduing her and tells Valkyrie that she needs to be ready and at attention. China reveals that she has worked up a decisive trap for Darquesse which will counter her own powers against her once she steps in the circle. The three need to get the Grimore from the Irish Art Library, the one Skulduggery and Valkyrie raided six years ago as the Grimore' is situated there and then use Stephanie as bait in order to lure Darquesse into the circle and subdue her. China feels confident that the plan won't go wrong.
(5 Years Later, Danny Timeline)
At the general store, Danny confronts Jeremiah, a fat man arguing with him meaninglessly and another elderly man calling himself Gant who tries to resolve the issue. Gant and Danny inquire if Danny has seen a tall, black-haired Irish girl referring to Stephanie. Danny lies and denies seeing an Irish girl and both the men leave the town.
Skulduggery and Stephanie reach the vault in the art gallery after disabling the security cameras and evading the vampires by phasing through the walls. With the heightened security system, Stephanie uses the Sceptre to destroy as many boxes as possible and they retrieve the Grimore' but not before alarming the vampires, Stephanie makes a run for it only to fall in the arms of Darquesse.
(Five years later, Danny Timeline)
Danny sees the two men trailing him and throws off the acne thy delivering the groceries to another person instead of Stephanie and once he confirms that Jeremiah and the older man have left he goes to Stephanie's place and informs her of the situation. She thanks him and tells him to keep her identity hidden and if anything happens she can take care of herself.
Stephanie fights off Darquesse with all her power using the Sceptre against her but missing the mark. Skulduggery distracts Darquesse and Stephanie makes a run for it with the grimoire until Darquesse finds her and threatens to kill her. Stephanie shifts and Darkquesse lands into the trap circle with Fletcher, Deacon and others arrive. Deacon uses his powers to subdue Darquesse, Skulduggery uses the Soul Catcher and drags the spirit of Darquesse into it. Finally, Valkyrie makes her return.
Stephanie meets the engineer and is not so sure of her objectives now, Fletcher still tells her that he loves her. China meets Valkyrie and they both make amends. Skulduggery and the crew will head to America to take care of the Renegades shielded by the American Sanctuary. Valkyrie and Stephanie come to a complacent settlement to coexist.
The escaped Valkyrie is revealed to be Darquesse impersonating Valkyrie and blending in. She executes Deacon as she sees him as a threat and launches a further plan.
Scapegrace, Thrasher and Clarabelle arrive at the medical Wing at the Sanctuary and meet Dr. Synecdoche who informs them that their bodies are safe and uncorrupted and returns the two individuals to their former selves.
Vex, Rue, Skulduggery, Stephanie, Darquesse, Renn, Gracious, Donegan and Dai gather at the American Sanctuary, the others greet Darquesse for Valkyrie's supposed return. Adrasdos, a necromancer takes them to the grand Mage Zafira Kerias about the Renegades she's sheltering. Skulduggery tells her that she may deal with them if she guarantees safety and complies. Zafira investigates about Ravel's unbroken link and the messy job of the Irish Sanctuary but Renegades break out.
Skulduggery and others deal with the sorcerer Star at the second basement while Darquesse takes Fletcher away who teleports into a hospital. Darquesse confronts Vector, a boosted sorcerer who realized who she is and begs for her life informing her that Kerias managed to betray the Irish Sanctuary and that she has a creature called 'Gnarl', invulnerable to magic from the Cave of the Voids ready to be unleashed.
Darquesse heads down to the tunnels to deal with the Gnarl only for Kerias to intervene and mock her, Darquesse feeds Kerias' carcass to the Gnarl who is impervious to her attacks. Thinking about a new strategy Darquesse brings down the ceiling and buries Gnarl and leaves without anybody noticing. Vector is held captor by Skulduggery. Upon teleportation, Darquesse's impersonation is known by all and Skulduggery, China and Stephanie try to stall her and use the Sceptre.
Skulduggery, spotting the impersonation plans it all out and China kills Valkyries body letting Darquesse escape, Skulduggery uses the Sunburst to bring back Valkyrie to life with her own consciousness, Darquesse separated her for now.
(Five years later, Danny Timeline)
Gant and Jeremiah murder a family in Ginats pass mistaking them to be Irish and this trail lead them back to Danny's town by a local telling them about Stephanie and her location. Danny attempts to distract them from entering the house but realized Stephanie is missing. Gant holds him captive and tells him of his motivations to kill Stephanie.
Everybody is happy with Valkyrie's return and they advise her that the past is over and that she may now redeem herself, Valkyrie feels all the bad thoughts and intentions leaving her. She and Skulduggery leave for home. Skulduggery informs the others that Nye has escaped from the prison and Darquesse spirit is still loose. Stephanie reveals that Darquesse took her magic as well when she left her body.
While discussing Fletcher's relationship with Stephanie and how it will surprise Valkyrie a Remnant possessing a small boy informs Dai, Vex Saracen and Fletcher that the Remnants have their own plans and won't be following Darquesse for too long. Fletcher and Saracen teleport back to the Sanctuary hurriedly as Vex and Dai get possed by the Remnants.
Darquesse hires Vincent Foe to work for her and bring about the destruction of the world. For betrays China Sorrows and accepts Darquesse's offer.
At the house, Stephanie and Valkyrie argue violently about who gets to stay with the family and take care of the situation as they both have new identities. Alice is left in care while Thier parents leave. Remnant possessing Tanith attacks but Stephanie and Valkyrie together subdue her and she agrees not to kill them and that she's not so sure about following Darquesse anymore and leaves the house. Stephanie states that she will return o normal life and leave the magic behind and gives up the Sceptre. Valkyrie approves and cordially accepts.
Skulduggery investigates a dead body and declares Darquesse is possessing local people but her energy kills off the possessed body within hours. Stephanie says goodbye to the Engineer and starts to leave when Darquesse attacks her in the form of a possessed Obloquay. The two battle inside Darquesse's triggered cloaking sphere hidden in plain sight across Valkyrie and Skulduggery. Darquesse chokes Stephanie who fades away from consciousness.
Stephanie is declared dead due to Asphyxiation. Fletcher and Valkyrie are shocked and everybody mourns her death.
Valkyrie has a word with Solomon Wreath. Skulduggery tells Valkyrie to go home and take ownership of the Sceptre. Valkyrie finds the Sceptre hidden under Alice's cot and relaxes that Alice has already touched the Sceptre first and controls its powers.
The medical Wing informs that it's been six hours since Stephanie's body has been stolen. Skulduggery points out that Vincent Foe may be aiding Darquesse in her plan. Valkyrie pays a visit to Gordon and both discuss the passing events. Valkyrie realized that Darquesse plans to use the Source Fountain in the mystical caves in order to reanimate Stephanie and use that magical ability and forever possess her body.
(Five years later, Danny's timeline)
Stephanie appears and helps Danny. Jeremiah and Gant kidnap him as a bait for Stephanie and leave town.
Valkyrie, Skulduggery and Echo Gordon enter the caves below the house to search for the Source Fountain. Phync Lions attack Skulduggery who distracts them. Valkyrie and Gordon are stranded and come upon Anathem Mires corpse. Later, they stumble upon the Source Fountain where Darquesse and Vincent Foe are preparing Stephanie's body. Vincent claims that they planned this all along, he also confesses that he killed the real Gordon and reprogrammed Echo Gordon to be wiped for further use of Darquesse. Tanith comes to their rescue and pushes Valkyrie off in a tunnel. Valkyrie gets sad watching Echo Gordon fade and bids him adieu. Darquesse mentions that she will require some time to fully reach her peak strength. Valkyrie rescues Skulduggery from the Monster in the Caves with tentacles and both of them encounter a magnanimous dragon in the caves and are amazed at this. China picks them up and Skulduggery proposes bringing back Melancholia against Darquesse and shunting Ravel to trap her forever in the parallel dimension. The sanctuary prepares to trap Darquesse and Skulduggery tells everyone about his scheme. The Remnants seem to be very calm and non-intrusive in the situation.
Valkyrie, back to normal for a day visit Carols reflection and tells her about Stephanie's death and her responsibilities as Carols reflection. Carol is still the same old reflection. Returning home Valkyrie sees her parents seeing the footage o Stephanie fighting in the war with the Sceptre with a horrified expression.
Darquesse holds Tanith captive and inquires why she betrayed her. After a dialogue, Darquesse tells Tanith that the Sanctuary has ripped the link with Ravel and that she needs to punish Ravel more than ever and in doing so she would need Tanith's Remnant inside her. She rips it off and consumes the Remnant and all the knowledge of is previous hosts is granted to her. She then heals Tanith and remarks that it was probably the last kind act she would ever do, and she wouldn't be thanked for it.
Desmond and Melissa Edgley have a conversation with their daughter about the magic she wields, and they angrily demand an explanation. Valkyrie calls Skulduggery and Fergus who explain at a length about the events of the past years, Valkyrie's capabilities and their world-saving missions but the parents are somewhat angered and shocked to hear it all and can't process it. They demand that Valkyrie should return to her normal life and criticize Skulduggery for dragging a child into all the madness. Valkyrie defends him and steps up saying that it will be her own decisions now that she doesn't world any magic anymore.
Valkyrie regrets her outburst against her parents and talks to Skulduggery about it. At the Sanctuary they awaken Melancholia and Valkyrie retell her the events of the past year and a half and offers her a choice to lost her magic to help them stop Darquesse.
Tanith, now her original self without the Remnant is brought up to date about her contributions in Darquesse's plans by Sanguin who also informs her that Vincent Foe holds a grudge against her for killing Mercy. She leaves to Roarhaven without any memory of the past two years and shocked. Valkyrie informs her about Darquesse and the passing events also informing her about the alternate dimension where Mevolent is still alive. Upon China's orders, Valkyrie and Skulduggery get ready to leave and shunt Ravel back. Tanith is horrified to learn about Ravel's betrayal and Ghastly 's death
(Five Years Later, Danny's Timeline)
Dany realizes that Gant and Jeremiah follow Stephanie because she is 'Special'.
Darquesse visits Argeddion whose memories have been reinstilled and injects him with a remnant and extracts it and put it back within her gaining control over all Argeddion's knowledge and memories and kills him off. Now, her great plans have the right resources.
Skulduggery and Valkyrie are shunted to the parallel dimension where they dodge the Redhoods and try to get in the city unsuccessfully. They stumble upon the Torment who recaps the events happening in his world. Skulduggery spots Ravel who has been also trying to get in and both of them decide to get out of the dimension only to be surprisingly met by Lord Vile, Baron Vengeous and Mevolent
Skulduggery and Ravel are bashed and held prisoner by Lord Vile and Mevoldny but Darqueese arrives stating that she has learnt to shunt and manages to defend against them both. On the last of her energy, she gives up Ravel and escapes. Mevolent and the trio victorious send Valkyrie to Nye and imprison Ravel and Skulduggery
Nye performs tests on Valkyrie and detects that her body contains no trace of magic and that she's essentially a unique vessel. Just before Nye proceeds to perform an autopsy on Valkyrie, Serpine comes to her rescue and holds Nye at gunpoint.
Serpine introduces Valkyrie to the teleporter Emmet Peregrine who's still alive in this dimension and asks her to aid him in gaining through gun from Mevolent by taking the role of Darquesse. With some reluctance, she agrees once Serpine promises a simultaneous rescue for Skulduggery. Peregrine will be aiding Valkyrie in the process.
Dusk makes an offer of aiding them Sanctuary and appearing to be under their control and China adepts making the vampire Exiles official Roarhaven Citizens
Darquesse grabs the Gun after managing to stand up against Mevolent. Serpine finds the gun useless momentarily and all escape. Skulduggery thanks Valkyrie and they both steal the gun only to be stopped by Serpine and they have a heated discussion. Lord Vile appears and starts off explosions but Skulduggery and Valkyrie are shunted to the real world just in time. Valkyrie, now insanely injured is informed that the explosion triggered her Surge and her magic is back but she cannot channel it yet. Tanith visits Valkyrie's family and tells them about the situation. Skulduggery and Valkyrie have a conversation about her newly obtained magic and how it is unknown in its current state. All visit China where thy find Fletcher, Tanith, Donegan, Gracious, Wreath and are acquainted with Dusk's citizenship. China tells them that to fight off against Darquesse they'll be using the Godkilling weapons and for greater measure they will be using the ultimate Necromancy Symbol to make Valkyrie invulnerable to Darquesse's attack. China draws the symbol on Valkyrie but three physical tests need to be undergone for the shield to activate. Wreath proposes to take Skulduggery to the Necropolis to undergo the three physical tests. Skuldggery agrees but makes sure that Vile's power is under his control by going through the accelerator. After talking to Valkyrie, Skulduggery realizes that Darquesse's motive to destroy the Faceless Ones and other gods and gain supreme control. In Danny's timeline, Gant and Jeremiah brutally murder a woman running from them which terrifies Danny, who learns a lesson.
Darquesse has meeting with her supporters including the possessed Dexter Vex who has leading contribution for her future plans. She confronts Sanguine, who now possesses one god killer. Sanguine states that his loyalties will now lie by Darquesse. She proposes that she will ruthlessly exterminate Ravel and kill Valkyrie to gain her energy and become a super powerful being. Darquesse sends Dai on a quest to obtain the Sceptre bonded to Alice
Valkyrie makes amends with her family and Fletcher. Dai breaks into her house and injures her parents, severely attacking Valkyrie and escapes with the Sceptre as well as Alice. Valkyrie is grief struck.
At the Necropolis, Wreath makes Skulduggery aware of the three test and his objective. Skulduggery passes the first test after the Inquisitor tries to provoke him
Valkyrie and her parents drive to the Remnants headquarter but are thwarted by the sentry but Melissa manages to momentarily blind him gaining an advantage. Skulduggery is faced with the second test where arguable, the ghosts of the people close to him appear. I.e. Wife, child, Ghastly, Shudder, Stephanie, etc. and coax him to join them in death. Skulduggery somehow overcomes the passion and passes the second test. Fletcher and Wreath using the magical binoculars question whether the ghosts were real.
Discovered by the Remnants, Valkyrie and parents are taken to Dai who has Alice hostage and instructs them to obey his orders or Alice will die. Valkyrie drives to Roarhaven with Dai, Alice and her parents upon Dai's orders.
On their way, Foe and his minions attack the van and Valkyrie steps out to deal with them. Foe unleashes Samuel, a vampire but Valkyrie's wierd magic kicks in making her burst with energy and glow in white light and she lightning hits Samuel and Foe runs off. The four return on the journey to Roarhaven
At the Necropolis, Skulduggery faces his final test, battling the Guardian but learns that if Skulduggery passes the test, the sigil will kickstart Valkyrie's ultimate protection for 23 minutes at the moment the Guardian is defeated. Skulduggery states that he'll return and defeat the guardian when they need Valkyrie's shield to kick in and not now.
After shaking off Dexter Vex, Valkyrie and Skulduggery joins the council in the Hall of Prisms where everybody has gathered. It is reluctantly agreed that Ravel will be fighting with then, Valkyrie will don the DeathTouch gauntlet and that Skulduggery needs to defeat the Guardian exactly at the perfect moment to gain every advantage over Darquesse. Scapegrace, qualifying as a Dead Man arrives and proposes that he'll take Skul's place at the Necropolis.
Scapegrace's body is returned to him with his mind and he's given all the necessary instructions. Ravel is released from the chamber and given a Godkiller. Skulduggery instructs him to fight alongside Roarhaven against Darquesse.
Darquesse realizes that Ravel has been freed and approaches Roarhaven. Scapegrace and Thrasher, prepared with the map reach the Necropolis and Scapegrace starts off the showdown with the Guardian.
(Danny's Timeline, 5 Years Later)
Gant and Jeremiah take Danny to their magical home and wait out for Stephanie to come rescue him
Darquesse arrives and the whole squad manages to injure her consistently, especially a heavily armed helicopter. Valkyrie begins to get a grab over her 'freak' magic and rises to fight against Darquesse
Scapegrace battles against the Guardian and tries to save Thrasher from the Guardian who recognizes this as an act of purity and claims that Scaepgrace has passed the third test. Scapegrace also accepts the title of 'King of Necropolis'
Valkyrie tries to defend against Darquesse as her shield kicks in but fails to injure her. Lord Vile and Melancholia collectively beat the hell out of Darquesse injuring her and ridding her of all her healing abilities. Darquesse kills off other sorcerers and cleavers but sustains fatal injuries. As a last resort Darquesse uses a lethal shockwave nulling Valkyrie's all powerful shield and wiping almost the entire Roarhaven and nobody seems to be in sight.
Valkyrie hurries back to China seeing almost everything crumble and no sign of Lord Vile/Melancholia/Darquesse. Dexter apparently seems to be chasing Valkyries parents. Valkyrie is gravely injured with internal bleeding but persists and dons the DeathTouch Gauntlet, warns China about Ravels potential escape. She also awarded China that the Black Cleaver is now controlled by Scorn and was a ploy to assassinate her. China and Tanith battle against the Black Cleaver and Sanguine and Valkyrie try to find Darquesse amidst the chaos. Locating Darquesse, Valkyrie uses the last of her strength to counter a fatal shockwave and drops unconscious. Sanguine makes a return to help Tanith against the wounded Black Cleaver who has just dislodged a band of Cleavers while China makes an attempt to stop Ravel from using the Accelerator. While Dexter Vex distracts Darquesse, Valkyrie recovers and runs off but not before standing evidence to all the hundreds of Remnants trying to take control of Darquesse, forcing into her body as hosts. Darquesse burns them from inside and gains additional energy and critically wounds Vex after reading the Remnant from him. Billy Ray Sanguine after managing to injure the Cleaver dies of mortal wounds, Tanith surprised baits him to the Fighting Circle where the rules dictate the warriors to lay down Thier armour and weaponry and fight raw. Valkyrie explains to her parents that they need to find a safe place to hide and that she needs to fight and defeat Darquesse. Valkyrie, with extreme guilt and disgust kills Alice with her DeathTouch Gauntlet to gain control of the Sceptre and uses it to bring life back into Alice although she is utterly shamed by the act. Tanith, fighting naked against the Cleaver manages to cut off his head now that he is unarmoured and tries to recover from the battle. Valkyrie sees the scene from the vision being acted out in reality and is scared for her parents. Wielding the Sceptre and missing Darquesse, Darquesse obliterates her parents only to bring them back to prove her superiority to Valkyrie. Valkyrie now shocked and angry powers her magic and hits Darquesse hard, Fletcher comes in at the right moment and Darquesse is teleported to the circle with the Sensitives Finbar, Cassandra, Philomena and Scrutinous and manages to kill them. Within minutes she apparently obliterates Valkyrie, Skulduggery, China, Fletcher, Roarhaven Sanctuary, Three powerful nations and goes on conquest finally resulting in her opening a portal to the world of Faceless Ones. In actuality, Fletcher and Skulduggery are very much alive with everybody else including the Sensitives and inform that they shunted Darquesse and fooled her into conquering a fictional universe where their fake replicas died and that the real world is safe from Darquesse. Valkyrie's parents celebrate and congratulate her on saving the world.
Now that the danger is averted all rush down to the accelerator to see Ravel dazed and chained by China. The accelerator will blow up in 14 minutes. The engineer informs everybody that a willingness sacrifice of one soul will stop the process. Valkyrie and Skulduggery fight over who'll sacrifice themselves and express their attachment to each other. Eventually, Skulduggery walks towards the Accelerator.
Gant and Jeremiah fight off against Valkyrie who arrives to reduce Stephen. After dealing a few blows to each other, hiding out and trying to escape Valkyrie singlehandedly kills Jeremiah and takes on Gant as Danny escapes to get help.
Valkyrie and Danny together defeat Gant and drive away. Valkyrie safely returns Danny home and tell him her life story along the way. Danny is impressed but sad about Skulduggery's apparent passing. Valkyrie reveals that Skulduggery did not give himself up In the accelerator but send Ravel through it instead because it adheres to the law that ' A Soul must be willing given' but it does not necessarily have to be your own. Valkyrie informs him that she will be returning home to meet back her family and Skulduggery would be coming to pick her up. The series ends with Valkyrie inspiring Danny to live an extraordinary life and let the people know that important things like magic matter.
The book was released on August 28th, 2014; roughly the same release date of his books since Mortal Coil.
|2||Living in the Shadow .|
|3||Throwing Down the Gauntlet|
|4||Friends and Foe|
|5||To Watch the World Burn|
|6||My Normal Life|
|10||Girls' Night Out|
|11||Honey I'm Home|
|13||My Friend. My Furniture.|
|14||A Common Enemy|
|16||The National Black Belt Review Board|
|17||A Voice From The Darkness|
|18||Brogues and Burrs|
|19||Me and Her|
|22||The Return of Valkyrie Cain|
|24||A Fine Pair of Specimens|
|25||Going to America|
|29||Those Who Live in Darkness|
|32||The Job Offer|
|33||Misadventures in Babysitting|
|36||Joining the Stream|
|37||Brooking No Argument|
|39||Finding the Fountain|
|40||Famous Last Words|
|41||Here Be Dragons|
|44||A Better Person|
|45||A Brutal Act of Kindness|
|47||The Death Bringer Wakes|
|48||A New Roarhaven|
|49||Stopping for Gas|
|50||The Card Trick|
|51||The Temple of the Spider|
|52||The Devil Comes to Play|
|53||The End is Nye|
|56||Toe to Toe|
|57||A World of Pain|
|59||The Corpse Trail|
|62||The Knock on the Door|
|63||The City Below|
|65||The Second Test|
|70||Return of the Living Dead|
- It was nominated for Senior Irish Children's book award in 2014.
- Derek Landy Blogs Under Duress: Oooh FUN!
- Derek Landy Blogs Under Duress: The Year of the Requiem
- List of questions and answers from Booktopia on the Skulduggery Forums
- Derek Landy Blogs Under Duress: The Dying of the Light
- Derek Landy Blogs Under Duress: TDOTL: Shadow Edition
- Derek Landy Blogs Under Duress: The Black Edition
- Derek Landy Blogs Under Duress: The Back Cover
- Armageddon Outta Here