Flo and I had occasionally discussed what Iver thought about the reports that Gravedust was alive, which must have reached his ears eventually. Auraugu discovered at least one of the five was alive and kicking as early as Chapter 13. Harky knew the group was back by Chapter 18, and Gravedust was visibly fighting rebels there. Even if he didn’t engage other dwarves directly in that one, somebody probably would’ve mentioned “the archer dwarf on the elves’ side” afterward. And lots of the World’s Rebellion would’ve seen Gravedust fighting the Corruptor Beast in Chapter 35, including some dwarves who surely recognized him.

Some of Iver’s reaction here is political theater. He has a lot less trouble believing the mystics are hypocrites than he says he does: he’s just trying to trap Gravedust into admitting that hypocrisy in public. Gravedust continues to show his political adroitness: he not only sidesteps that trap, he uses the current moment to bolster his challenge to Iver.

FB: “Reaching behind my back like this is just how I express my skepticism about your prowess! It’s kind of like interlacing my fingers behind my head and sitting back in my chair. But I don’t have a chair, so I’m doing this instead.”