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Kate de Vries is a fictional character in the novels Airborn, Skybreaker and Starclimber by Kenneth Oppel. She comes from a rich family, though she is very interested in science. At the end of the last book, she becomes the fiancée of Matt Cruse.
Kate de Vries was born into a wealthy upper-class family. She has a caretaker called Marjorie Simpkins, who disapproves of her relationship with Matt Cruse. Kate's parents don't take much interest in her and don't seem to approve of her "hobbies". Her grandfather was the first to discover "cloud cats", an extraordinary and mysterious creature of the sky. She finds this fascinating, and when she discovers that Matt was the one who saved her grandfather from his aircraft, their relationship becomes an adventure.
Role in Airborn
Kate is first introduced to cabin boy Matt Cruse a year after he meets her grandfather on a crippled hot air balloon. She makes her entrance aboard the grand airship Aurora, on which Cruse serves, in an ornithopter along with her over-dramatic, very proper caretaker, Marjorie Simpkins. She and Matt become friends during their voyage to Australia. Though he is aware of their class differences, she appears indifferent and annoyed by the "silly" rules set down by "people like her". Kate is an intelligent, curious girl who can take care of herself; or so she thinks. Soon, she and Matt embark on perilous adventures involving pirates, shipwreck, a mysterious island, and mysterious animals.
Role in Skybreaker
Kate and Matt are to embark on a new adventure to find the ghost ship Hyperion and the rumored treasure aboard her. In this novel, Kate and Matt together face jealousy (Kate has a new suitor, the captain of their ship, and a gypsy called Nadira, takes interest in Matt). They also discover the dangers that caused the Hyperion to drift into legend. With their relationship, and their lives in jeopardy, Kate and Matt realize that their treasure hunt may cost more than it's worth. Rachel Moulton played Kate in both audio book versions.
Role in Starclimber
Kate is accepted as a scientist aboard the Starclimber, the Canadians ticket to be the first in space, while Matt has to prove himself to get aboard. They have small arguments about this, because the latter is upset at how easily she got on. When they take off they don't know if they'll return and Kate and Matt are a little tense towards each other. Kate accepted a proposal of marriage (it was the only way her parents would allow her to go on board the ship) from James Sanderson, though she says she won't marry anyone. Throughout the book, Matt asks her to marry him five times, twice while she's still engaged to James. She says no, stating that she can't be engaged to two people at once. Matt takes it hard, but near the end of the book she admits in front of the Starclimber crew that she loves Matt, not James, and throws the engagement ring on the ground. Everyone states that they already knew, including Kate's scientific rival, Sir Hugh. The last three are at the very end of the book, when everyone is back on earth and staying temporarily in an Egyptian hotel. She finds out that James eloped while she was gone and is bothered, but not hurt. Matt then proposes, ironically in the same way he did the first time: out of the blue, stating the words "Marry me,". Kate jokes that he should probably get down on one knee, so he obliges and asks again. She states that it wouldn't be proper without a ring, to which Matt pulls her engagement ring to James out of his pocket (it is revealed he picked it up after the crash) and proposes again. She finally accepts, stating that it'll be hard with them constantly going off to different ends of the world. The last lines are Matt saying, "Good thing the world is round."
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