Botkin Yul-Erdene was the instructor for combat training classes at the Little Palace. He was a former Shu Han mercenary who had fought in multiple wars on every continent. He fought for anyone that could afford to pay him. He is said to have a gift for killing no matter the method, and can and will train anyone. He is shown to favor his own people, but since "the Shu had a bad habit of taking a scalpel to their Grisha, few made it to the Little Palace to join the Second Army."

Appearance and PersonalityEdit

Scar across his neck and straggly hair. Shu, so dark hair and golden eyes like Tamar and Tolya. He loves weapons and fighting.


A former Shu mercenary whom the Darkling recruited to teach Grisha to fight without their powers.

Shadow and BoneEdit

Botkin teaches Alina to fight better, making her run many drills throughout the palace grounds. He is shown to be friends with Zoya, calling her a star pupil, until she uses her powers against Alina in a fight, which is forbidden.

Siege and StormEdit

Botkin stays at the Little Palace after the Darkling's coup and later on throughout the book. He continues teaching Grisha, including the Fabrikators after Alina adds them to combat training. He does not seem to have any problem with Alina's changes. Later, Alina sends Botkin with the Grisha students to Keramzin, which she hopes will be safer than the Little Palace.

Ruin and RisingEdit

The Darkling presents a dead Botkin, along with Ana Kuya and the three Grisha scouts, hanging from an oak tree in front of the Keramzin orphanage in a vision that Alina has. She yells at the Darkling that she hopes Botkin killed twenty, even hundreds of the Darkling's Grisha. The Darkling simply says that Botkin was an extraordinary man.

Memorable QuotesEdit

Shadow and BoneEdit

  • "Block! Faster! Maybe little girl likes to be hit?"
  • "Steel is earned."


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