After Rowan kills Goddard and Rand, he escapes. A major takeaway is after Rowan pushes Citra and snaps her neck leaving her deadish, Citra hears a voice telling her she is meant for greatness (or some bullshit like that-I don’t remember). That voice was the Thunderhead and you can probably surmise by the title that book two is about the Thunderhead. Thunderhead picks up almost a year after book one where Scythe Anastasia, Citra, is the new scythe and remains working under Scythe Claire.
Spoiler Edition-The bold portions are my issues with Thunderhead
Rowan is Scythe Lucifer and is killing scythes who kill dishonorably. You can only kill a scythe by burning them. Rowan planned to glean scythe Brahms but he lets him go and gives him the opportunity to repent. The Thunderhead cannot intervene but becasue Rowan completed his apprenticeship and is now in possession of a scythe’s ring, it considers Rowan a scythe and will leave his capture and punishment in the hands of the scythedom. A while later, Tyger finds Rowan’s hideout and tells him that Rowan’s father was gleaned by Brahms (their immunity is now over and Rowan’s immunity given to him by Citra will expire in 2 months).
There are several locations that do not have cameras and therefore are not monitored by the Thunderhead. One of these so called charter regions is Texas. Tyger tells Rowan that he has a gig in Texas and that he’s moving there. When he gets to Texas, we find out that Scythe Rand hired him. Rand was not dead and got herself to a revival center.
Greyson Tolliver who regularly spoke to the Thunderhead was told by the Thunderhead that he was important. When he’s recruited to the Authority Interface to train to be an agent, he’s excited. Soon after, he is called in to the main office where he meets Agent Traxley. Traxley reviews rules of the separation of scythe and state. Traxley gives Greyson an example that if it is known that there was a hit on Scythe Ana and Scythe Curie, the Thunderhead is prohibited from intervening. The Thunderhead also cannot warn civilians. Traxley is sending a message thru the Thunderhead to Greyson to make him warn Ana and Curie. Greyson does by splatting on their car right before they trip a wire explostion. He is able to warn Ana before he is deadish. The academy officials find out and expell Greyson and label him as an unsavory. A requirement of an unsavory is to visit a probation officer and on Greyson’s first visit, Traxley is now his probation officer. Traxley tells Greyson to infultrate the unsavory life and hangouts to get info on who is trying to kill Ana and Curie. When he agrees, his Greyson identity is wiped from existence. He does and meets an unsavory named Purity. Purity recruits Greyson, now called Slyad, to assassinate Ana and Curie at a theater. He discovers that they are under the orders of a scythe and that scythe was Rand (I think). He also discovers that their plan is to fill the sprinkler pipes with acid and to start a fire causing the acid to burn the scythes. Greyson wants out and goes to tell Traxley and then learns that Traxley was gleaned. Greyson foils their plan by warning Ana and is burned in the process. Scythe Constantine thinks Greyson is the culprit and vows to glean him but Ana knows better and finds him and tells him to hide out in the Tonists colony. He does and eventually accepts this way of life even when an ally of Ana offers him a way out. Greyson is deeply upset and thinks the Thunderhead has abandoned him so he asks for a sign that the Thunderhead still cares about him. The Thunderhead does so by flashing the lights for 1.5 seconds but Greyson’s eyes were closed and missed it thus believing the Thunderhead no longer cares.
Faraday finds Rowan and tells him he should stop killing scythes because it’s not going to curb their behavior. Faraday tells Rowan he’s leaving to find the mythical place of Nod where supposedly the founders planned a failsafe against a scythedom that falls to evil but that that plan has been lost to time. Faraday’s search leads him to the library in Alexandria where he and his new apprentice, librarian, then go to current day DC to find Nod on a map that was conveniently not revealed to the Thunderhead. When they find it, they discover the place has a working camera so now the Thunderhead knows about it.
Rowan visits grand blade Xenocrates and finds out Brahms gleaned his father. Although Xeno could have captured Rowan, he lets him go. Rowan goes to Brahms to kill him but walks into a trap. Rowan is captured and sent to Texas where he’s reuinted with Tyger. All this time, Tyger has been training with Rand and believes he’s appenticing to be a scythe. Rowan tells him different but Tyger doesn’t believe him largely do to his infatuation with Rand. Rand has Tyger and Rowan fight but Rowan beats him every time because Tyger doesn’t use logic. After a long time of capture, Goddard visits Rowan with Tyger’s body and voice. Rowan thought he killed Goddard by decapitation but Rand helped Goddard and she killed Tyger to use for Goddard’s new body. During this time, Goddard has the best tech heads and scientists visit him but since there are no cameras in TX, the Thunderhead doesn’t know why. Goddard wants to fight and beat Rowan but he can’t and he leaves him for deadish multiple times. During one deadish moment, the Thunderhead talks to Rowan and tells him that there is a 39% chance that Rowan is going to affect the world.
At the next conclave, Xeno has announced that he’s been appointed to be a high blade (comparable to a supreme court justice) and that it’s time to vote in a new grand slayer (president). Their elections are done by nominations, an hour or so of debate, and a 9 second voting period. Scythe Marie is nominated and although she doesn’t want it, she accepts. Scythe Nietzche was also nominated and when other nominations were on the floor, Goddard walks in and is nominated by Brahms. Nietzche steps down. Ana only has a few moments to find a loophole and she does. When it’s time to vote, on second 8, Ana asks for an inquest (a postponment to the election) on the grounds that only 7% of Goddard is a scythe and that is against the rules. Xeno accepts the inquest that will be resolved at the World Scythe Council (?) in Endura. In Endura, Ana and Curie receives a tour of the underwater nation including an air tight vault that holds the founder’s artifacts. We also discover that Endura is not monitored by The Thunderhead and that they are on their own to fix any tech glitches.
Goddard has taken Rowan to Endura and plans to present him for punishment and to garner favor of the high blades. He uses Xeno’s visit by Rowan as blackmail and Xeno recuses himself of the vote. One evening Rand offers herself physically to Goddard becasue she’s always loved him and that’s why she fought so hard for him. He turns her down and humiliates her and she visits Rowan and gives him a key to escape. Her logic is that if she can’t get what she wants, Goddard, then Goddard can’t get what he wants. When Goddard finds Rowan has escaped, Rand blames Brahms and Goddard believes her and he kills Brahms. Rand believes she is controlling Goddard and is happy.
The high blades unanimously voted that since Goddard’s body is only 7% his own, he cannot be grand slayer until he completes an apprenticeship. They then elect Curie as an interim grand slayer until there is a formal vote.
Rowan finds Ana after the vote when they are about to leave the island to warn her. Because the technology is so bad on the island and humans are in charge of fixing which could take several minutes, Goddard and his scientists rigged the island to be submerged in mere minutes. During this time, all the high blades drown and there is no escape because the airports have flooded. Rand and Goddard escape by helicopter and it is revealed that Goddard didn’t want all of this to happen. Curie deceives Ana and Rowan into thinking she can save everyone but what she needs is in the vault. Curie locks Rowan and Ana in the vault saving their lives. They will die but they will be found deadish and revived but there’s no way of knowing how long they will be there before they are found. Curie and all the other scythes go to the tallest building and then self glean-Curie is dead.
The Thunderhead is upset and makes a loud noise that is head all over earth. The tonists think it is the great resonance which they believe is their god. Everyone is marked unsavory except Greyson. (The Thunderhead doesn’t talk to unsavories.)
The story ends with the Thunderhead telling Greyson that need have to talk.