The Atriedes leadership is decimated, and Paul and Jessica are stranded in the desert, where he undergoes a metamorphosis and begins to manifest as the very thing the Bene Gesserit feared. However, the manifestation would not have been completed without his acceptance into a Fremen tribe. Paul adopts their ways – leading raids, fighting to live, and taking a Fremen as concubine. Eventually even Paul defies the Bene Gesserit mating instructions, choosing his Fremen concubine Chani and refusing to mate with his Bene Gesserit bride from House Corrino.
Dune has soft science fiction themes and begins like a fantasy story with feudal lords, mysterious sisterhoods and imperial mandates. Sci-fi themes in Dune include ecology, planetology, eugenics, and the evolution of religions. Fantasy themes include feudal settings, mysticism, messiahs and empires. There is an appendix on ecology, and another on religion; and the backstory of the Dune entrenches the reader deeper into the universe. Mixing elements of fantasy and science has worked for Dune, making it one of the most enduring sci-fi novels today. Fans of the Duniverse have their own theories and they argue over the white-saviour complex, similarities with Lawrence of Arabia, if Paul Atreides is actually the hero of Dune, and how much of Dune inspired the Star Wars story.