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In The Hero of Ages, there is a scene where

The First Generation explains to Sazed in a conversation that the atium Ruin wants is in the Homeland.

However, Ruin doesn't seem to try to get it until quite a while later, after many troops have moved there, and keeps doing what it had been far away. In other scenes, Elend was avoiding talking because it could hear conversations. Why couldn't Ruin hear this conversation?

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Ruin was not paying attention to the Kandra Homeland at the time

Ruin is not omnipresent, while the Firsts are talking to Sazed, Elend is defending Fadrex City against the Koloss with his new army of allomancers, and Vin is taking on every Inquisitor at once (with Ruin actively inside her head).

Given that he was so distracted, it is not a surprise that he didn't hear a brief conversation about Atium in a part of the world populated by beings he thought were already his to control.

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I don't have the book with me to give you a full quote, i'll add one once i'm home, but they were in the homeland, which was under a ore filled mountain.

This is the exact place that, later in the book, Elend stages his final stance, and Ruin could not see him until he and his army came out. In several places though the books its noted that metal blocks ruin's power, he can't change words in metal, nor he can't see people blocked by metal, i would assume he can't hear them, as well.

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    This is incorrect since later Vin hears KanPaar talking while he obscured by metal. – amflare May 21 '19 at 14:34
  • This doesn't really track with the story either IIRC. Don't the Kandra have metal containers for storing the Atium so that Ruin cannot find it? If the homeland were somewhere Ruin could not see, the boxes would have been redundant. – JMac May 21 '19 at 17:11
  • @JMac As I recall, metal containers were to hide the Atium as it was being transported and further obscured by metal coins. Ruin certainly knew that Atium came from the Pits of Hath Sin, and so could potentially observe metals taken from there and watch where they went. That, of course, was another layer of deception. The Kandra kept the Atium beads in a large pile in a secret chamber, and the metals in the ground further obscured it. It's not clear that Ruin (or Preservation, or Harmony) can differentiate metals by direct observation. – Upper_Case Jul 2 '19 at 23:05

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