Apr 27 2009 4:10pm

The Wheel of Time Re-read: The Shadow Rising, Part 12

What up, yo: Welcome to a brand shiny new installment of The Wheel of Time Re-read! Today we will be covering Chapters 34-36 of The Shadow Rising.

Previous entries can be found thataway; this and all other posts are rife with spoilers for all of the currently published Wheel of Time novels. Read ’em or weep!

And... that’s all I got to say about that. Onward!

Chapter 34: He Who Comes With the Dawn

What Happens
Rand and Mat shuffle painfully away from Rhuidean, trying to beat the sun back to the camps. Mat is in particularly bad shape, frequently stumbling and clutching his head; Rand notes that Mat is not complaining, which is a bad sign. Rand is not much better, but is only thinking about the prophecy that said he would destroy the Aiel, and the others that say he will Break the world again, which horrifies him.

“Light,” he said harshly, “I don’t want to destroy anybody.” His mouth felt lined with dust again.

Mat glanced at him silently. A wary look.

I am not mad yet, Rand thought grimly.

He thinks to himself that he had to do it, though; he needed the Aiel, a people who followed him for a reason other than greed or fear. He and Mat have almost reached the Wise Ones’ camp when Couladin yells at him, demanding to know what he has done with Muradin; he says Rand must have murdered him, and attacks, casting a spear at him, followed by two more from other Shaido. Rand slices two of them out of the air with saidin and Mat knocks aside the third with his spear, and Couladin howls that this is proof – they went into Rhuidean armed and are covered with blood. This time a dozen spears come at them. Rand and Mat fling themselves aside, and the spears bounce off each other and somehow end up stuck in the ground in a perfect circle around the spot he had just been standing. Everyone is stunned for a moment, even Couladin. Bair runs down the slope in a fury, yelling at Couladin to stop; if he violates the peace of Rhuidean again he will be outlawed. Couladin starts to protest about Rand and Mat’s weapons again, but Bair declares they went unarmed, though she asks Mat in an undertone where he got the spear.

“I was given it, old woman,” Mat growled back hoarsely. “I paid for it, and I mean to keep it.”

Bair sniffs, and tells Rand to get rid of his fire sword and show them the signs before Couladin whips them up again. Rand doesn’t know what she’s talking about for a moment, and then remembers what Rhuarc showed them. He pushes up his left sleeve:

Around his forearm wound a shape like that on the Dragon banner, a sinuous golden-maned form scaled in scarlet and gold. He expected it, of course, but it was still a shock. The thing looked like a part of his skin, as though that nonexistent creature itself had settled into him. His arm felt no different, yet the scales sparkled in the sunlight like polished metal; it seemed if he touched that golden mane atop his wrist, he would surely feel each hair.

He raises his arm above his head, and mutters rise, but the Aiel seem to want more. Bair grabs his other arm and pushes back that sleeve too, revealing a second Dragon wound around his right arm, and her breath catches. Rand thinks of the prophecy (“twice and twice shall he be marked”) and wonders what the price is, and when he will have to pay it. Bair thrusts his right arm in the air too, and proclaim him the Car’a’carn, a chief of chiefs, and that prophecy was begun to be fulfilled. The reaction of the Aiel is not what Rand expected; they stare, and then silently drift away, except Couladin, who snarls first. Rand asks where Moiraine is, and Egwene tells him she must still be in Rhuidean, along with Aviendha, and then shocks him by telling him that he and Mat were in the city for seven days. Rand is appalled at the time lost, and asks how long until Moiraine returns. Bair answers that if she has not returned by the tenth day, she will not; Rand restrains a snarl and asks if one of the Wise Ones will Heal Mat. They say they cannot, and Egwene explains to an indignant Rand that not all women who channel can Heal like Moiraine can. Rand asks Lan why he did not go with Moiraine, and Lan answers darkly that the Wise Ones “convinced” him not to go after her. Rand asks Rhuarc how he is supposed to unite the Aiel when none of them will even look at him. Rhuarc answers that it is one thing to know a prophecy will be fulfilled one day, but another when it starts in front of you. Rand knows he means the prophecy spoke by the old Aes Sedai at Rhuidean, and asks if everyone sees the same thing in the columns; the Wise Ones protest that no one is allowed to speak of what they see in Rhuidean, but Rand answers that he means to change what is and is not allowed.

“Change,” Rhuarc said. “You know he brings change, Amys. It is wondering what change, and how, that makes us like children alone in the dark. Since it must be, let it begin now. No two clan chiefs I have spoken with have seen through the exactly same eyes, Rand, or exactly the same things, until the sharing of water, and the meeting where the Agreement of Rhuidean was made. Whether it is the same for Wise Ones, I do not know, but I suspect it is. I think it is a matter of bloodlines. I believe I saw through the eyes of my ancestors, and you yours.”

Rand feels strange about the reiteration that his ancestors were Aiel, and changes the subject, asking about the “sharing of water”; Rhuarc explains that from the start of the Breaking of the World to the time the Aiel entered the Waste, only one people did not attack them, and offered water freely. He adds that that is over and done with now, and the treekillers spat in their faces. Rand shakes his head, thinking of the amazing complexity of the events that had happened in order for him to be born when and where he was.

How many more points like that had there been, where a single decision one way or another affected the weave of the Pattern for thousands of years? A thousand times a thousand tiny branching points, a thousand times that many, all twitching the Pattern into a different design. He himself was a walking branching point, and maybe Mat and Perrin, too. What they did or did not do would send ripples ahead through the years, through the Ages.

He looked at Mat, hobbling up the slope with the aid of his spear, head down and eyes squinted in pain. The Creator could not have been thinking, to set the future on the shoulders of three farmboys. I can’t drop it. I have to carry the load, whatever the cost.

They reach the tents, and take Mat inside to tend to his wounds, but Lan stops Rand and asks if he saw Moiraine in there; Rand says he did not, but assures Lan that if anyone would make it out, Moiraine would. Lan grunts, and warns Rand to be careful of Couladin. Rhuarc agrees, and says he will detail Jindo to guard Rand. Rand joins Mat inside to get his injuries tended to; and asks Rhuarc how he could get ahead of Couladin, to tell the other clan chiefs about his markings. Rhuarc replies that there are places that clan chiefs meet; the closest is Alcair Dal. Mat repeats the name, giving it a subtly different sound, and translates: “The Golden Bowl?” Rhuarc nods, though he says there is nothing golden about it. Rand frowns, and thinks he was not the only one marked in Rhuidean; Mat understood the Old Tongue whole now, though he didn’t seem to be aware of it. Rand notes that Egwene has noticed this too. He asks Rhuarc how long it will take to get all the chiefs to Alcair Dal, and Rhuarc says weeks, though it will go faster if the Wise Ones visit their clan’s chiefs in the dream. Rand asks Amys if they will do it, and she asks bitterly if he is so eager to destroy them. Rand answers that he has no time; nine Forsaken still live, and he cannot afford to wait. Amys does not seem surprised by the news, and finally says that they will do it. Rand feels some of his tension lift, and asks Amys to tell him about his mother. Amys tells him Shaiel came to them while Amys was still Far Dareis Mai, and how they had found her wandering the Waste in silks and finally out of curiosity gave her water. She never gave her real name, instead taking “Shaiel”, which means “Woman who is Dedicated” (Mat nods, and Lan eyes him).

“She spoke of a child abandoned, a son she loved. A husband she did not love. Where, she would not say. I do not think she ever forgave herself for leaving the child. She would tell little beyond what she had to. It was for us she had been searching, for Maidens of the Spear. An Aes Sedai called Gitara Moroso, who had the Foretelling, had told her that disaster would befall her land and her people, perhaps the world, unless she went to dwell among the Maidens of the Spear, telling no one of her going. She must become a Maiden, and she could not return to her own land until the Maidens had gone to Tar Valon.”

Rand thinks he’s heard that name, Gitara Moroso, before, but cannot think of where, and also wonders at the thought that he has a half-brother somewhere. Amys continues that no one not Aiel had ever become a Maiden, but somehow they found themselves agreeing to let her try, and though it was hard, Shaiel succeeded. Seana picks it up, commenting that Rand looks a little like her, and less like Janduin, his father. Janduin had been the youngest clan chief of the Taardad in memory, and had done much to bring peace among warring clans. Rand asks how he died; Amys says he was devastated by Shaiel’s death, gave up leadership of the clan, and went north to fight Trollocs and Fades in the Blight. Those who returned, though, said he’d been killed by a man; Janduin had claimed that the man looked like Shaiel, and would not defend himself when the man ran him through. After this, Rand spends the rest of the day watching Rhuidean, waiting for Moiraine to return; at one point he asks Melaine, who is angry with him for refusing to eat, why she is not plotting with Couladin to kill him, since he is supposed to destroy the Aiel. Melaine storms out, and Bair answers that he is both the Aiel’s doom and their salvation.

“Without you, no one of our people will live beyond the Last Battle. Perhaps not even until the Last Battle. That is prophecy, and truth. With you . . . ‘He shall spill out the blood of those who call themselves Aiel as water on sand, and he shall break them as dried twigs, yet the remnant of a remnant shall he save, and they shall live.’ A hard prophecy, but this has never been a gentle land.”

Some time after this Aviendha returns, exhausted and sunburned; when she catches sight of Rand, she glares at him with hatred in her eyes, and Mat advises Rand not to turn his back on her. Rand supposes that she has been through the columns and that’s why she hates him. At sunset Moiraine appears, almost collapsing with exhaustion, and Rand regrets that the only thing he feels is relief at the time saved. Mat asks what he is going to do now.

“Something you should like. I am going to break the rules.”

Yay, infodump. Fun to read, not so much to recap.

I mentioned it before but it’s worth reiterating how much I liked the little detail that Mat will yowl and complain if there’s nothing really wrong, but is silent when in real pain. Why I like it so much I’m not really sure about. Something about how it indicates what a person’s like when their back is to the wall, or that they know when to drop the bullshit and buckle in, maybe.

So, yeah, I was wrong earlier about the glass columns using only one genealogical line to send everyone through, mea culpa. On reflection, it works, since the Aiel traveled in one humongous group for practically the entire span of time covered in their Wayback Machine, and as Rhuarc says, everyone only gets the same coverage once they reach the Waste and split up into clans. Though how the glass columns handle that logistically is... something I’m not going to bother thinking about, honestly. “It’s The Magic, Stupid” works for me on this one.

I think the thing that really made the Aiel storyline in general work is their entirely believable reaction to Rand’s coming and declaration as Car’a’carn. Which is to say, their distinct lack of enthusiasm at the news, which is I think at least in part Jordan’s gentle poke at how these things often go in stories of this type, as Rand himself notes:

In the stories, when somebody fulfilled a prophecy, everyone cried “Behold!” or some such, and that was that except for dealing with the villains. Real life did not seem to work that way.


I note in passing that Rand’s thought about the Creator laying the fate of the world on three farmboys upholds my Character Pyramid argument from the previous entry. I’m just saying!

I can’t remember off the top of my head whether Rand puts it together that Gitara is also the Aes Sedai Moiraine told him in TGH had announced his birth just before dying. Not that it matters, I suppose, though I think realizing this may be partially what helped him figure out that Shaiel = Tigraine. I wonder if he’s ever going to tell anybody about that? Not that he needs to, I guess, but I just think it would be cool if someone besides him knew that he is actually of royal blood, just to see their reactions.

Chapter 35: Sharp Lessons

What Happens
Egwene enters the Heart of the Stone in the Dreamworld and is startled to see a woman there dressed like a Sea Folk woman, except with no blouse. She gasps, “Elayne?”, and Elayne jumps and whirls, suddenly dressed in a very demure green dress, and explains embarrassed, that that is how the Sea Folk women dress at sea, and she just wanted to see what it was like. She tells Egwene that Juilin and Thom are with them, sent by Rand and Lan (and Moiraine), and that Nynaeve is quite set up about it, though she won’t admit it.

Egwene smothered a small smile. Nynaeve was set up? Elayne’s face was beaming, and her dress had changed again, to a much lower neckline, apparently without her realizing it. The ter’angreal, the twisted stone ring, helped the Daughter Heir reach the World of Dreams as easily as Egwene did, but it did not confer control.

Elayne asks how Rand is, and Egwene tells her everything that happened, adding that she is worried that Rand is getting harder, that he only sees pieces on a game board instead of people, but Elayne replies that sometimes to do what’s right, a king or general must sometimes hurt some people in order to avoid hurting everyone. Egwene doesn’t like it, but accepts this, and moves on to the subject of Wise Ones, and the fact that some of them can channel, including Aviendha; Elayne says of course: she felt the same kinship for Aviendha that she did for Jorin. Then she grimaces, realizing she has betrayed her promise not to say anything about the Windfinders, and asks Egwene to keep quiet about it. Egwene agrees thoughtfully, reflecting that that was two societies now that had channeling women as integral and respected members of it without imposing any type of binding on them. Elayne moves on and tells Egwene that the Sea Folk think Rand is their Coramoor, and that she thinks they are ready to follow him without question; Egwene sighs and wishes the same were true of the Aiel. As it is, Couladin would kill him given half a chance.

Elayne took a step forward. “You will see that doesn’t happen.” It was not a question or a request. There was a sharp light in her blue eyes, and a bared dagger in her hand.

“I will do the best I can. Rhuarc is giving him bodyguards.”

Elayne seemed to see the dagger for the first time, and gave a start. The blade vanished. “You must teach me whatever Amys is teaching you, Egwene. It is disconcerting to have things appear and disappear, or suddenly realize I’m wearing different clothes. It just happens.”

Egwene promises to do what she can, but warns Elayne that she might not always be able to make their meetings. Elayne glances at Callandor, driven into the floor, and asks Egwene why she thinks Rand did that. Egwene replies that he said it would hold the Tairens to him, to know that he was coming back, and hopes he’s right. Elayne says hesitantly that she thought it might have been because he was angry about something. Egwene asks, like what? Elayne mentions the two letters she gave him, and when Egwene asks if she said something angering in them, she laughs it off, but her dress flickers wildly and her hair springs up in all directions. Then Egwene feels something snatch her away, and is gone.

Egwene wakes in her tent with a gasp, and finds Amys sitting there. She asks angrily why Amys pulled her out, and Amys cuts her off, saying she may be Aes Sedai in the Tower, but here she is an ignorant child playing with snakes. Egwene tries to protest, and is suddenly hauled into the air by one ankle; furious, she tries to embrace saidar and finds herself blocked. Amys snarls that she was warned, but went anyway.

Her eyes seemed to glow in the dark, brighter and brighter. “Never a care for what might be waiting. There are things in dreams to shatter the bravest heart.” Around eyes like blue coals, her face melted, stretched. Scales sprouted where skin had been; her jaws thrust out, lined with sharp teeth. “Things to eat the bravest heart,” she growled.

Egwene screams as jaws close around her face, and wakes again in her tent, still cut off from the Source. She starts scrabbling for her knife, and Amys tells her acidly to calm down. Egwene asks shakily if it is really her this time, and Amys replies it was her both times; sharp lessons are the best. She continues that she did not know Aes Sedai could lie, yet Egwene went into the Dreamworld after promising she would not. She lets go of the shield around Egwene, sighing that she cannot hold it any longer, as Egwene is so much stronger than she in the Power, but says that if Egwene will not follow directions, she will not teach her. Egwene swears to do as she is told from now on, but implores Amys to let her meet with her friends – they need her help. Amys stares a moment, and then tells Egwene to braid her hair. Egwene is confused, and Amys says that she will wear her hair in two braids with ribbons, like little Aiel girls wear it, and will keep her hair that way until she shows she can be trusted as a grown woman. Egwene tries to bargain with Amys, but Amys is having none of it, and finally Egwene agrees. Amys tells her that she has a strong talent for the dream, and will likely outstrip all of them one day, but not if she doesn’t live to see that day. Amys waits to see if Egwene is going to try bargaining further, but Egwene manages to stay silent, and at length Amys adds she will go with Egwene to meet her friends. Then Amys tells her there is work to be done, and brings Egwene to a tent set up as a sweat bath. She and Egwene join the other Wise Ones and Moiraine already inside, with a sullen Aviendha tending the coals. The Wise Ones begin discussing Rand, and how to make sure as many of the Aiel as possible survive his coming, and also to make sure he survives as well, and for that he will need guidance. Egwene asks if Rhuarc cannot guide him in Aiel ways, and Amys answers that her husband is a good chief, but no peacemaker; they need someone to be there to tell him when he is about to step wrong. Also, they need someone to watch him, to help them figure out what he is going to do so that they can know what to do to most help the Aiel. Bair asks Egwene whether he would confide in her, but Egwene replies that she doubts it; he does not trust as he used to. Moiraine puts in coolly that she will help where she can, but that she has little influence with Rand these days. Bair sighs, and tells Aviendha that she will stay as close to Rand al’Thor as she can manage, from waking to sleeping, and listen to him in the hope he will let something slip to a pretty woman. Aviendha spits that she will not; Bair is amazed, and Egwene hastily interjects that it would not be betraying Elayne to merely keep an eye on him. This only makes Aviendha angrier, and Amys demands to know what her problem is.

“I do not like him!” Aviendha burst out. “I hate him! Hate him!” Had Egwene not known better, she would have thought her close to tears. The words shocked her, though; surely Aviendha could not mean it.

“We are not asking you to love him, or take him to your bed,” Seana said acidly. “We are telling you to listen to the man, and you will obey!”

The Wise Ones mercilessly browbeat Aviendha, but she will not comply, until Egwene puts a hand on her shoulder and asks her if she will do it for her, as her near-sister. She could think of it as watching over him for Elayne. Aviendha slumps, and acquiesces. Business done, everyone goes back to enjoying the sweat bath, and Egwene asks Moiraine in an undertone if Rhuidean was very bad. Moiraine replies quietly that the memories will fade, and as for those that don’t:

“The Wheel weaves as the Wheel wills, and we are only the thread of the Pattern. I have given my life to finding the Dragon Reborn, finding Rand, and seeing him ready to face the Last Battle. I will see that done, whatever it requires. Nothing and no one can be more important than that.”

Moiraine: still awesome.

Egwene: slightly... less awesome. I used to not get why people got so annoyed with Egwene, but reading this now, I see it, because she is totally the “Ooh! Ooh!” Girl.

You know who I mean: that annoying girl in grammar/high school who was always the first – and middle, and last – person to raise her hand in class; and she wouldn’t just raise it, she would shoot it up like a cannon going off, it was like she was trying to bust her own hole in the ozone layer over there. She’s the girl who is completely convinced she knows everything, and is unfortunately just smart/talented enough that it is very difficult to convince her otherwise. She has an opinion on everything, and is eager and excited and impatient and confrontational and tactless and even though you know she at least theoretically will go on to do great things one day (or at least definitely graduate college), right then she basically drives everyone there including the teacher right up the goddamn wall.

Egwene is totally that girl. And yet, though I see why others would therefore be annoyed with her, I cannot get annoyed with her, because I was also totally that girl.

Maturity has blunted the edges a bit (no, really, it has – think of that, and shudder), but yeah, I was totally that girl, and at her age, in her situation, I doubt I would have fared better in the “Sharp Lessons” department than Egwene. (Mrs. Scarcello, if you’re still out, there, I hereby officially nominate you for sainthood.)

So I get why people don’t like her, but I cannot participate. Us “Ooh! Ooh!” Girls gots to stick together, aight?

Chapter 36: Misdirections

What Happens
The Aiel head out from Chaendaer in three parties: the Taardad with Rand, the Shaido, and the Wise Ones in their own small party between, to keep hostilities from erupting. The Shaido left when the others did, even though by tradition Couladin should have waited another day for Muradin to emerge. Egwene, Moiraine and Lan ride with the Wise Ones; Rand watches them and wonders what they are saying. He also wonders why Egwene is wearing her hair in pigtails. Walking beside him, Aviendha abruptly tells him that Elayne is the woman for him, and Rand thinks she had obviously been set to spy on him, and that he is supposed to be stupid enough not to realize this just because Aviendha is pretty. He asks what she means, and she begins describing Elayne to him in rather graphic detail. Mortified, Rand tries to cut her off, but she says implacably that if Elayne did not arrange for him to see her at her bath, Aviendha will act as her near-sister and remedy the lack. The Aiel nearby (and Mat) are vastly amused at his efforts to shut her up, and Aviendha angrily tells him that Elayne laid her heart bare to him in those two letters, and meant every word, and yet Rand rejects her.

Rand scrubbed a hand through his hair, and had to rearrange his shoufa. Elayne meant every word? In both letters? That was flat impossible. One contradicted the other nearly point for point!

He misses Min, who had only occasionally insulted him or made him feel a fool, unlike Elayne or Aviendha, who both made him feel like a complete idiot. Aviendha stalks in silence, staring at him, and he wishes she would go away.

Mat shades his eyes against the glare and wonders why Rand is putting up with the Aiel woman, who in his opinion makes Nynaeve look meek. He watches the Wise Ones and Moiraine, and thinks about his situation.

I’ve been to Rhuidean. I’ve done what those snake folk said I had to. And what did he have to show for it? This bloody spear, a silver medallion, and . . . I could go now. If I have any sense, I will.

He looks out over the barren landscape, and grimaces. Maybe he should stay a while longer. A Maiden scout who Mat regrettably recognizes as Dorindha (she had played Maiden’s Kiss with him in Tear) comes back to the column with the news that peddlers are approaching; Mat perks right up, but notices that Rand has gone stone-faced at the news. Rhuarc orders the column to pick up the pace, looking displeased, until the huge caravans of wagons comes into view. Mat asks why everyone seems upset; he thought peddlers, gleemen, and Tinkers were allowed free passage in the Waste. He doesn’t get an answer, and Rand sidles up to him and mutters that he should probably not bring up Tinkers. Once the wagons stop, Rhuarc and Heirn go to meet them, and Rand, Aviendha, Rand’s bodyguard of a hundred Jindo, and Mat all follow; from the Shaido side, Couladin approaches as well. Mat notices that no one from the Wise Ones’ party comes, instead gathering around Moiraine and something in her hands that sparkles. The leader of the wagons introduces himself as Hadnan Kadere, and Mat notes that though he sweats copiously, he does not seem intimidated by the Aiel. Kadere tells them he seeks Cold Rocks Hold, and Rhuarc informs him coldly that he is nowhere near Cold Rocks, and if he had continued another day, he would have reached Rhuidean. Kadere goes pale and hastens to assure the Aiel that he would never have done so deliberately, and Rhuarc says he may travel with him to Cold Rocks. At this, Couladin jumps in, saying that the Shaido have the larger numbers, and therefore the peddlers should travel with him. Rhuarc bitingly asks if Couladin became a clan chief while he wasn’t looking. Couladin reddens, and retorts that the Shaido are also concerned with He Who Comes With the Dawn, and will follow him. Mat notes that he did not say that Rand was that person. Rand, staring at the wagons, doesn’t seem to be listening. After a moment, Rhuarc says the Shaido will be allowed to camp outside Cold Rocks Hold. Kadere sighs with relief and offers to start trading then and there, but Rhuarc says they will camp at Imre Stand that night, and trade will be done then. Kadere starts to put his hat back on.

“A hat,” Mat said, reining Pips closer to the peddler. If he had to remain in the Waste a bit longer, at least he could keep that bloody sun out of his eyes. “I’ll give a gold mark for a hat like that.”

“Done!” called a woman’s huskily melodious voice.

Mat starts at the sight of the immensely fat woman in cream-colored silk approaching; Rand frowns and shakes his head. The woman introduces herself as Keille Shaogi, and snatches Kadere’s hat and offers it to Mat, saying he will need it to survive the Three-Fold Land, where a man can die just like that. Mat thinks she is very odd, but thinks the broad shady hat is worth it, and pays up. Keille turns to Rand and asks if there is anything she might sell him, but Rand merely shakes his head and says nothing. Mat notices, as they get ready to head out, that a gleeman is standing back by Keille’s wagon. Mat tries to engage Rand in conversation about how strange the peddlers are, but Rand says nothing, unnerving Mat, and Aviendha opines that Mat understands nothing. Rand finally says something about Kadere’s eyes, how they had never changed, and that Kadere was a dangerous man. Mat agrees uneasily.

Rand changed his study to the tops of the nearest spires and buttes, twisting his head this way and that. “Time is the risk,” he murmured. “Time sets snares. I have to avoid theirs while setting mine.”

Mat asks, snares? Rand doesn’t answer directly, but leans toward Mat and says in a loud stage whisper that they ride with evil now, and to watch himself. Mat is incredulous that he thinks Kadere is evil.

“A dangerous man, Mat—the eyes always give it away—yet who can say? But what cause have I to worry, with Moiraine and the Wise Ones watching out for me? And we mustn’t forget Lanfear. Has any man ever been under so many watchful eyes?” Abruptly Rand straightened in his saddle. “It has begun,” be said quietly. “Wish that I have your luck, Mat. It has begun, and there is no turning back, now, however the blade falls.”

He heads back toward the Taardad, and Mat follows, wondering what the hell all that had meant, and thinking he simply had to find a way out of here before it was too late.

I read this chapter, and all I can think is to say, in a Vaguely Aussie Gamekeeper Guy From Jurassic Park voice, “Clever author”.

Okay, where to start with all the clever on display. First there is the chapter icon, which is so one of those tests you get where the professor tells you to read ALL the instructions before starting the test, and of course no one does, and it’s only at the end of the test you find out that all you had to do to get a passing grade is write your name at the top, Wah-wah horn noise! In other words, if only you had paid ATTENTION, dear reader, you would totally have known what was up with this chapter even before you read it.

Which I could put down to Jordan being snarky, except for how, 98% of the time, he was totally right. Very, very few people I’ve talked to have claimed (believably) that they noticed the icon or its significance the first time they read this.

(And if you did notice it, I have to bust out Kate’s favorite quote from The Princess Bride: “Yes, you’re very smart. Now shut up.”)

Then there is the tactic of switching to Mat’s POV before we meet the peddlers, just so we can be suitably bothered and bewildered (and bewitched, I suppose) by Rand’s ominous comments of Apparent Crazy. You can tell that was the purpose, because this is one of the few Mat POVs that is really not about Mat in any significant way, other than some hints that will be expanded upon in the next chapter (and, of course, the acquisition of The Hat).

I really did not twig for the longest time to the fact that Rand knew Keille was Lanfear from the moment she appeared – no, scratch that, he knew something was up from the moment he heard there were peddlers. I didn’t pick up on this even though he specifically brings her up at the end of the chapter, apropos of apparently nothing. Don’t I feel sheepish. What’s more, Rand’s comments right there also indicate that he knows (or at least strongly suspects) that Moiraine and Co. were listening in as well.

It’s probably a matter of opinion as to whether his bringing up Lanfear was meant to be a warning to Moiraine, snarky bitterness over his funny-ha-ha-but-not-really predicament, or both. Or, possibly, even a warning to Lanfear, though I would think that would be a rather tactically unsound move, all things considered. But, hey this is Rand we’re talking about, so maybe he thinks it’s the chivalrous thing to do, blargh. I guess the only real question was whether he had figured out that the gleeman was really Asmodean already, or if that came later.

As a piece of writing, it is, as I’ve noted, bloody freakin’ clever (“Misdirections”. INDEED, Mr. Jordan); as a character note on Rand, though, I’ve never been able to decide if it veers into Out Of Character territory or not. As portrayed, Rand’s certainly no idiot, but Holmes-like logical insight has never struck me as one of his strong suits; he seems like more of a “quick thinking in a crisis” kind of guy.

However, now that I think more on this, maybe I’m not being fair to the character. Rand does do a pretty fair amount of deductive reasoning from small and/or obscure clues (the decision to go to Rhuidean itself being one example). I guess that, to me, this is just somewhat occluded by the number of times he’s let his ta’veren-ness lead him around by the nose – or alternately, the number of times he’s reasoned out something that turns out to be dead wrong.

Then again, I guess it would be boring if he was right all the time. Right?

As a last note on this chapter, consider the following:

... rough flats broken by hills and tall stone spires and flat-topped buttes, gray and brown and every hue between, some streaked with long swirls in shades of red and ocher. Occasionally a great natural arch loomed as they moved north and west, or strange, huge slabs of rock balanced improbably, forever on the brink of falling. Every way Rand looked, jagged mountains reared in the distance. All the wreckage of the Breaking of the World seemed gathered here in the place called the Aiel Waste.

Is this a shoutout to the badlands of the American West, and the nuclear testing done out there, or what?

And I’m spent, kiddies. See you Wednesday!

Andrew Lovsness
1. drewlovs
I am sooo happy Mat has his staff now. When he fought Galad and the male version of Elayne, he was so bad-ass I really hoped he stuck to that type of weapondry, and Jordan giving him one is a thing of awesomeness.

On a offhand note, I went to finish reading the part 10 responses, and noticed we over-loaded the system. Not bad at all; I wonder if that has ever happened to Tor...

I'm sure someone else responded to that, but as you can see, I'm a bit behind on my response reading...
Rebecca Starr
2. Rebecca Starr
Ch 34
agreed on how realistic the Aiel's reaction is to Rand's pronouncement. it actually makes the last chapter of TDR seem like it was written... well, an Age later, all of that "Aiel and Defender alike kneeling and shouting The Dragon! Al'Thor!" in one of RJ's rare all-knowing, God-like POVs.

aaanyway, I'm curious if people have thoughts on 'the price Rand must pay' - other than his death, being an obvious answer. we know 'once the dragon for remembrance lost' (Rhuidean, very obvious), but have we seen 'twice the dragon for the price he must pay' yet? is it yet to come at Tarmon Gaidin? discuss

I also wonder which 'rule' specifically Rand is referring to as he muses to himself at the end - it seems like such a dramatic ending to the chapter, so I admit I'd be a little disappointed if he's only thinking, "I will tell all Aiel about the columns" or "I will lead the Aiel out of the Waste." tho probably, that is the answer to my own question

I do love on p.558 the thought about the Cairhienins "one simple decision" to let the Aiel have water, and all the events that occurred (including Rand's birth on Dragonmount) as a result. it is one of those things that I think RJ meant to make us think about with this series, and one that can make you think until your hair is gray... in a good way
Rebecca Starr
3. bookworm
You know, Rand could be wrong about the three farmboys saving the world thing. His character does seem to have a hard thing believing "girls" to be capable (ever since he wanted Egwene to go home in EotW).I am somewhat surprised you didn't mention it from that point of view.

I agree with most of your appraisal of Egwene, and I could really see that comparison to you coming. lol.

That last paragraph was more about southern Utah and or parts of Arizona in my book. Atomic testing was done in Nevada, where I'd imagine the terrain was fairly flat. I think RJ was trying to set a scene to something that might be somewhat familiar.
Galen Brinn
4. GatheringStorm
I think the "price he must pay" is the first part of the 'Finn prophecy of "to live you must die"...along with all the other damage in the meantime (eyesight, hand, the Dual-wound, etc).
Rebecca Starr
5. Rebecca Starr
ok I lied, I'm not done yet (and yeah, I guess i sort of was an ooh ooh girl, though I never really put in those terms before...)

Ch 36
doh yes i totally missed Lanfear's symbol the first time around, and when I did realize the Forsaken were with the peddlers, I was *sure* she was Isendre... I couldn't fathom her as fat ugly Keille either.

i agree with you, Leigh, that Rand's behavior is so odd, knowing that the peddlers are Darkfriends (if not Forsaken) but not telling, but "pretending" to tell Mat that they're evil, while really meaning it... i also find it curious he takes this moment to say "it has begun." i mean, it's not like he hasn't encountered the Forsaken before!

but then, I think this Rand-looks-pretty-loony-all-a-sudden is part of why we're getting this chapter POV from Mat... Generally, when Rand explains things to himself in his own head, he does wind up looking pretty sane.
John Massey
6. subwoofer
Hi Leigh- nobody's twitching, but we haven't been wearing the same underwear for two weeks straight either. Post is great as you have always done!

If anyone wants to wade into the mire and mirkiness of post 10- don't log in and it will be no problem... Theoretically.

Yes, Rand does need a burning bush or something to say "behold". Then maybe the Aeil would take him serious. Loved the Wise One's responses to seeing the Dragons. The sigh of
"yup there it does- darn, is it a temporary tatoo?"
Maggie M
7. Eswana
It’s been forever since we last saw Mat and Rand…. Had to skim the previous Glass Columns chapters to re-orient myself!

Ch 34: has Rand (or any character) ever figured out or commented on Galad’s half-brother-ness to Rand? Will it even come up? I suspect Moiraine knows, since Galad was her cousin (or aunt? I always mix their family up).

Ch 35: It’s interesting to compare Egwene’s thoughts about the Oaths between here and later, when she’s Amyrlin. Back in tSR she notes that both Windfinders and Wise Ones have honored places in their societies, implicitly trusted with their great power. Aes Sedai, however, are bound, and still not generally trusted. By KoD, she’s been with Aes Sedai so long that their predjudices are rubbing off on her- she calls Nynaeve and Elyane out for their hesitation about the Oaths and the Rod. Quite the 180-degree turn around.

So Egwene = Hermione. Yeah, I see it. Though I was totally That Girl in high school too, so I’m less annoyed by it and more “oh geez, was I that annoying? Yes, I was. Oy.” Egwene, while she has her annoying parts, is certainly a well-developed characters. The changes between tEotW and even tSR and especially KoD are quite astonishing, especially if you remember she’s barely twenty years old. The depth and maturity she acquired so quickly is actually remarkable.

Ch 36: I remember being rather irritated with Rand in these earlier books, because he just seemd *so* clueless about his three woman. Granted, we as readers have the omnipotent viewpoint (well, sort of ), so we have the advantage of knowing about Min’s viewing and how all three girls feel about him. However, for most of this book- really until he and Avienda sealed the deal in tFoH – I just wanted to shake and yell, “Listen man. All three of them love you. For real. Now, have fun figuring that family dynamic out. Have you ever seen Big Love? What? They don’t have HBO in Randland? Too bad. It might help you a lot.” But he just seemed more naïve about women than usual here- and it was frustrating.

Okay. Mat notices a Maiden named Dorindha. Is this the same Dorindha who will become sister-wife to Melaine? That doesn’t make sense--- since Dorindha was Bael’s first wife, and thus had probably given up the spear for a while before Melaine wanted in on the deal. It seems unlikely it’s two women of the same name. Anyone have any insights?


And… I’m out. Happy Monday, friends.
Rebecca Starr
8. Edgelaw
Leigh, nice as always. I agree that Jordan was sneaky good here, and that Rand knew that Lanfear was behind the peddlers (or that they were a scheme of hers). But, he definitely didn't know that Lanfear was Kellie. Hence his surprise at the end when Lanfear blows up the wagon and the big fight among her, Rand, the girls and Moraine happens. Small point and you are absolutely right that Rand was smarter than I was on my first read-through. I suspected Forsaken plots right away with the peddlers, but nothing more specific.
Andrew Lovsness
9. drewlovs
One of the main reasons I have suggest others read Jordan's book was his ability to write realistic female characters. He is ultimately limited, since he isn't one; my sister is the first to tell me this.

But overall, his female charaters are strong willed, and tend to break from the fantasy genre women and their "weaknesses". From the time I started to work, my managers have all been women, and I "grew up" thinking of women in power positions. Thus, it was a hard transition for me to think of women as the "weaker sex" in any rational way.

Jordan hardly ever makes me feel "weird" in this way, as some other authors do, and Moiraine and Egwene are two characters that are realist, likeable and legitimate power players. My two favorite characters are Mat and Nyn, but these re-reads along with my own readings have brought me to true respect for the character Egwene.

Funny, I started this second post to discuss more of the Mat/old tongue topic, and never quite got there... go figure.
Rich Bennett
10. Neuralnet
wow I have to start paying more attention to the chapter icons... I never really notice them when I am reading the books.
Ellie Virgo
11. Egglie
I always saw the price he must pay as specifically relating to the Aiel. He gets two dragons, one for remembrance lost like all the other chiefs, one for the price he must pay as Car'a'carn. I think its to do with him destroying the aiel, the price for saving the world is the death of virtually all the aiel. Only a remnant of a remnant shall he save and all that.

I also can't help having sympathy for Egwene. I get that she is annoying a lot of the time but I don't get the hate that she provokes. But then, I too, was an ooh, ooh, girl at school:-)
Rebecca Starr
12. Cowboy Funk
I did forget about Moiraines little "listening device" she uses in this chapter. I know she has used it before but it was in an earlier book and kinda got left by the way side. "Clever girl." (I'm glad someone else is still using this Dated or not.)
Maggie M
13. Eswana
Egglie @11:
That makes sense (the price). We haven't seen anything specific yet, other than the brotherless ones and Shaido desertion, but maybe something more explicitly Aiel-destroying will happen close to or after TG.

I vote we start an "ooh ooh girl" support group.
There are probably a lot of us out here. :-)
AJ MacPherson
14. Mackey62
Re Rand knowing who Lanfear is, I thought he thinks she is disguised as Kadere’s little play thing (can't remember her name). But I could be disremembering.

"ooh ooh girls" so gosh darn cute, so gosh darn annoying.
15. Freelancer
Nice post, Leigh.

I'll only dig into one tiny piece of it right now. I'm right with you that I didn't pick up on Lanfear's icon until it was already obvious, meaning a whole book later.

Also, your impression that Rand's intuition about trouble on the way with the peddler's appearance matches my own. Basically, "Huh? Something's up? And just how does Rand know that, did he gain an extra sense inside the crystal spires?" I hunted back and forth for quite a while trying to see a clue to his insight here, and it just doesn't exist. Somehow, Rand knows that Lanfear and/or other Forsaken are coming for him. Him commenting out loud to Mat about all the people watching over him, it was clearly meant to both let Moiraine know he was aware of her eavesdropping, and to warn her as much as he could.

A seminal fulcrum in the story, this stage. After learning his true history from the Ancestitron, Rand finishes the transition from "Why me, what do I do?" to "I'm it, here's how it's going to be." Disapproval of the Creator's selection of farmboys as saviors aside, he fully accepts that the role is his, and is now determined to do his best. He started this transition when leaving Tear, but it culminates at Alcair Dal.
Josh Davis
16. YoSoyElJosh
Ugh, Egwene. I always like her at the present, but she just has some character reversals that really tick me off.

When Rand suddenly develops his ladykilling complex, I get irritated. When Egwene, suddenly, is madly in love with Gawyn instead of Galad, I get irritated. When Egwene, suddenly, decides the Oath Rod makes her Aes Sedai, I get irritated.

I do understand the events that occured which led her to those changes in her beliefs, but they still bother me. Egwene is pulled into Gawyn's dreams, and can't help returning his feelings for her, as he's such a super sweet guy. Egwene spends an enormous amount of time around Siuan and molds herself after her.

But, I don't like it. Both are just too sudden for my tastes. I'm more willing to accept fervently taking one position at the beginning, or slowly changing stances, but her rapid about-faces (at least, as we read them, they seem to occur very quickly) just shout "ret-con" for me.
Rebecca Starr
17. AUgradGSUgradstudent
I don't think Rand puts together that Asmodean is the gleeman until he sees him while Skimming back to Rhuidean. There's a line there about his shock at seeing Natael and not Kadere. Then he comments to Lanfear later that he was sure it was Kadere because of the eyes.
Rebecca Starr
18. jk24
My first post. Thanks for the re-read, it's really great.

I think that when Rand says, "It has begun," he is referring to his plan to bind a Forsaken to him in order to learn how to channel. I believe he mentions this towards the end of TSR or at the beginning of TFoH. I may be mistaken, though.
Chris Maurer
19. grayfox
I think Rand even thinks Lanfear is the other woman with the peddlers (can't come up with her name right now) and Lanfear makes a comment that she's willing to look fat and ugly if its necessary.

One other comment...badlands are generally considered to be in parts of the Dakotas, Montana, Wyoming & northern Utah (also parts of Canada). Most of the weapons testing by and large occurred in Nevada and New Mexico. Sorry to nitpick!
Kristen Cook
20. CeistaExiste
Lord Rand of House Mantear. Are there any Mantears left? Any traces at all?
Richard Fife
21. R.Fife
Chap34 Comments:
I agree, really like the desc on Mat. Probably cause I'm the same way (and a lot of people are). People like to kabitz, but /usually/ they know when to shut up and get the work done.

So Rand is a reliable narrator, eh? Just cause he thinks its true doesn't mean it is. I still uphold my double pyramid PoV

Leigh et al, wanna go to the "Ooh! Ooh!" ball with me? (was an insufferable knowit all back then, and I'm sure some will say I still am today).

Eswana: Galad was Moiraine's Aunt. I love it. I know what you mean to say (nephew), but I like that version better. Thus far, I don't think anyone has really brought up the Galad connection, will be interesting to see what happens. I predict that Galad will give Rand a copy of the Whitecloak bible thingie and get him all frothing at the mouth.

@11 Egglie
I too think the price is the destruction of the Aiel, but I don't think in the death sort of way. I think it is more in the destruction of their paradigm of living, way of thinking.
Galen Brinn
22. GatheringStorm
For me, Egwene = simply annoying. Elayne on the other hand, elicits...more...negative emotions.

One thing that's bothered me about the peddler caravan: How the hell did they get ALL the way out in the middle of the Aiel Waste, near Rhuidean that fast (only 7 days since Rand got there)? It's nowhere mentioned of Travelling (on the part of Lanfear/Keille). I may also be mis-remembering, but I seem to recall from Hadnan's perspective that he wouldn't have gone to the Waste if not for the sudden appearance of Keille and her knowledge of high-end DF signals that compelled him obey her as higher up the food chain (but not the implication she was anything MORE than a DF).
Rebecca Starr
24. RobMRobM
@20 - yes. In KoD, one of the young'uns who support Elayne is the rep for Mantear. Can't remember his name but Elayne considered him the smart one of the group. Rob
Marie Adomako
25. MSedai
I want to join the support group, as I am a prime candidate. Confirmed when my (now) husband's friends commented upon his dating me: She's so nerdy! But she's hot, so it's ok. HMM.

And I never did get what was up with the peddlers until it was obvious, and it is only now on my third re-read that I actually look at the chapter icons for clues. Yeah, I am that slow.

I was always super annoyed with Egwene's insistence on the Oath Rod later on, when it obviously seems like such a bad idea. And I really don't remember any time that Rand comments on Galad being his half-brother, does he? I had pretty much forgotten about that whole thing because it isn't talked about ever again.
26. Freelancer
Okay, after perusing other thoughts on these chapters, I'm ready to suggest that something told to Rand by the 'finn clued him in for the arrival of the bad guys.

Surely he knows that one of the male forsaken is going to be bound to him to teach him, and perhaps they gave him just enough information about the sequence of events that he knows to expect a peddler's wagon train. That way, it isn't uber-deduction, simply recognition. Hence the ominous and inexplicable, "It has begun".

Some day, Brandon needs to reveal all of the 'finns answers to Rand and Moiraine. We have snippets, no more. While he's at it, we need retro scenes of what both Moiraine and Aviendha see in the Wise One ter'angreal in Rhuidean.
Richard Fife
27. R.Fife
@26: there is also the plain ol' prophecy of the dragon. He needs to go to the ancient city in order bind the shadow swore, or something like that. He knows that going to Rhuidean will directly lead to him confronting and capturing a Forsaken.
Ronald Hobbs
28. dustrider
erm, andorran royal familly. if Galad is Rands half brother, and Galad and Elayne share a father....

In modern families that would be uncomfortably close. I know they're not blood related, but that's like your dating your mom's ex-husbands kid... always struck me as eeww.
Rebecca Starr
29. Evinfuilt
The terrain is completely southern Utah, maybe a bit of Colorado thrown in for good measure.

A person could hide for years in the slot canyons of Utah. Water is rarely found, but the whole land is just beautifully carved and painted.
Bill Siegel
30. ubxs113
Great post Leigh.

I love how this is the point where Moiraine starts to become desperate to have any influence over Rand. It really adds depth to her character.
Rebecca Starr
31. douglasm
Eswana@7 and YoSoyElJosh@16
I suspect Egwene's 180 on the Oath Rod issue is due to Compulsion by Aran'gar. The Black Ajah doesn't want to give up its own set of Oaths, which they'd have to in order to match the no-longer-ageless faces of all other Aes Sedai, and the bad guys may have other reasons to consider the Three Oaths a good thing for their side. So, since Aran'gar was already in such a perfect position to do it, she went ahead and put in the tiny bit of extra effort required to "persuade" Egwene to change her mind about the Oath Rod.

Yes, it's a complete reversal of an important character's opinion on an important matter, but there is a perfectly good explanation for it.
Rebecca Starr
32. hoping to be of the blood
Rand was definitely waiting to see when the forsaken would come after him.
He recognized the plan as soon as he saw the peddlers but he was too far away to see any individuals.

"He came into the Waste," Rand chuckled..."I wonder if he will leave it again."

Mat thought he was going mad.

I also think he knew one of the male forsaken would come and fulfill the prophecy of him binding the shadowsworn.

"It has begun" Indeed.
Blake Engholm
33. UncrownedKing
A few things:

Ewg didn't start annoying me until the siege of TV and Halima friendship (grrr argh)

Mat's Hat - Uber awesome

Galad and Rand - It was revealed to me back in some post that had way to many off topic, and awesome, comments on it, that Rand and Galad were actually half-brothers. This still blows my fa-reaking mind. Probably how Rand is going to get the Whitecloaks and all of their stupidity to fight in TG instead of beating teh innocent and raising their noses at people.

I forgot about the spears falling in a perfect circle at Rand and Mat. Is there any significance here? I feel like Mat's luck and the Tavareness^2 may have done it, but I don't know.

I love the whole "Butterfly Effect" line of thinking being revealed here during these chapters. Really cool visuals and very believable.

I'm a card carring member of the "Man I wish I wasn't a WOT-noob back during my first read, and had picked up on the icons before POD" club. Always welcoming new members. WE are the normal WoTers who arn't geniuses and all knowing. :)

Also, Avi's anger toward Rand just down right pisses me off. Get over yourself woman! Gah, I'm not trying to start a fire in here, ladies, but it really annoys the hell'outa me.

And this concludes my rambling. This is the only part of Monday I look forward too.
Rebecca Starr
34. Browncoat Jayson
I think a lot of Rand's suspicions about the peddlers were simply that they were headed straight to Rhuidien; straight to Rand. Hardly coincidence.

But he was never sure who they were; he is shocked to see the gleeman when he went back to Rhuidien, and has to ask Lanfear which one she was.
lanyo lanyo
35. lanyo
R.Fife. thanks, I never realized Rand knew he was getting a pet forsaken. Then, the whole peddlers' scenes got confusing, and I was way slow on figuring out the were any forsaken instead of just DFs.

I hate the "ooh, ooh" girl. My mom is one, and since I tend to know lots and don't want to LOOK like that girl I spend lots of time biting my tongue and letting someone else try an answer. So I'm more of the snarky "god you're dumb" girl. Way worse I bet...
Dan Sparks
36. RedHanded
@25 MSedai

The Oath Rod isn't a bad idea. Shortens life span..yes. But as they go on in some detail, it's the main reason people trust Aes Sedai as much as they do (not much i know) Without the oaths they really don't know if an Aes Sedai is lying or if they are going to attack someone with the power or not. At least with the oaths people know somewhat what to expect.
Rebecca Starr
37. SonOfBattles
Sounds like a description of Monument Valley, no?
Galen Brinn
38. GatheringStorm
dustrider @ 28,

Rand and Galad are half-brother by the same mother. Galad is half-brother to Elayne by sharing the same father. So there's absolutely no blood relation between Rand and Elayne...just soap opera-worthy marriages.
Maggie M
39. Eswana
douglasm @ 31:
I like that theory. It also gives me yet another reason to dislike Halima, so that's great. Hopefully now Egwene will start to see the Light again since Arangar is gone. She was on to something for a while there.

Uncrowned @ 33:
Also, Avi's anger toward Rand just down right pisses me off. Get over yourself woman!
I sort of (wince) agree with you on this one, but I feel I have to defend my fellow woman, Avienda Awesome.

Imagine you're a girl, one raised with a pretty firm sense of what is Right and Wrong. Now, imagine that a friend of yours is dating a guy you really couldn't care less about, but your friend digs him, so good for her. Your friend has to go somewhere Far Away (like study abroad in Tanchico, for instance). She asks go to keep an eye on him; to keep skanky girls off him at bars, etc. You agree.

Now, all of sudden, you receive Prophetic News that you will someday have lots of sex and babies with your friend's man, the one you aren't such a fan of. This is a DESTINY thing, so you have no control over it. Given that people don't often take kindly to being told who their destined partner is (cough, Mat, cough- and he doesn't meet Tuon for like three more books, not the day after the prophecy), it would be rough to know that *someday* you will essential be betraying your friend by helping her boyfriend cheat. Even given the Aiel custom to share husbands, it would still be a rough one to take.

No fires started, so don't worry-- I just would hate to be in the same situation, cause that would really suck.
Blake Engholm
40. UncrownedKing

Well I am apart of the "Everyone is an idiot" crowd. Well not that bad, I do realize that I can/am wrong some/a lot, but I do enjoy when the ooooh oooh people get shot down for being wrong. And yes there are most certainly male ooh ooh-ers.

The ooh oohers in college turn out to be the people that raise their hand on the first day of class and ask if the professor has any more problems for them to do, because they took the liberty of doing all the homework possible while on "spring break". OMG really cool little 16 year old boy genius from over seas who enjoys being "better" than the rest of us.

OKOK I'm sorry for going off on a tangent..

EDIT: at 39

Yeah, I am probably overly harsh on Avi, because she turns out to be one of my favorite characters later on. Coming from a race of people who grow up idealizing the warrior entity, it is understandable that Avi would not understand how to control/emote her feelings. But still grr.
Rebecca Starr
41. Tony Zbaraschuk
How the hell did they get ALL the way out in the middle of the Aiel Waste, near Rhuidean that fast (only 7 days since Rand got there)? It's nowhere mentioned of Travelling (on the part of Lanfear/Keille)

The only thing that makes sense is that Rhuidean is actually relatively close to the Dragonwall, not way far out in the middle of the Waste. (This also ties in with the brief story of how Rand found out about Rhuidean, with the peddler who somehow made it back and wrote his story. If he could get back from Rhuidean to a stedding without any water, it's close.) And note that the Jenn brought all their wagons to Rhuidean, so there must be a passable wagon-trail from Caerhien to Rhuidean, which Kadere also follows.
Depth of worldbuilding: one of the Signs of Quality Literature.

Lanfear probably has some kind of thread tied to Rand (like the Findings we'll see a couple of times later), so she knows he's jumped out into the Waste, and rapidly diverts Kadere's caravan (which must already have been in, or near, the Waste) as the best available cover for her plan. It's possible that she diverted it ahead of time, but that would requite some foresight (or perhaps Pattern-reading) on her part; Lanfear and Ishamael apparently both have some ability to detect what Rand is going to do, or is doing, to the Pattern as a whole. I suppose she and Asmodean could have done massive mega-Compulsion on the whole caravan ("forget about this hole in the air you're driving through"), but that seems out of style for either of them.

Rand's thought about the infinite cascade of decisions resulting from that one gift of water is really, really, great; one of the moments where the series rises into the realm of high philosophy.

Okay. Mat notices a Maiden named Dorindha. Is this the same Dorindha who will become sister-wife to Melaine?

I don't see any reason why it has to be, other the Law of Name Conservation in Fiction, but RJ is good enough to give that one a pass when necessary.
mark Proctor
42. mark-p
Its a bit of a coincidence that both Rand and Mat take 7 days in their Ter'angreals.
Unless Matt was hanging for all that time or he was placed there at just the right time to be rescued which sounds a bit unlikely as well.
The tinkers just seemed suspicious but I think Rand was wrong about Kadere, he might be dangerous but not as dangerous as the others and he probably didn't know who Lanfear was disguised as or if she was even there.
Have we seen any pedlars yet who are not dark friends?
(The only only one I can think of who might not be sank into the ground with a ghost village during a bubble of evil.)

After all the discussion on taveren last time, maybe Tigraine is a minor character who was taveren (for a while atleased) which helped her convince the Aiel to let her join them. So that she would be in the right place at the right time for Rand to be born.
Amys' discription of her included "And certainly no one not Aiel had ever become a Maiden of the Spear. Some of us thought her mad from the sun. But she had a stubborn will, and somehow we found ourselves agreeing to let her try"
Rebecca Starr
43. zeropiel
Moiraine is/was about the same generation as Tarangail and Caraline Damodred. Remember she was late accepted when Rand was born. Even with an early start and at most 10 years as novice + accepted that would make her at least 25 then, though shaiel arrived in the waste at least 5 years before that.

Caraline is mentioned as Moiraines cuisin, so I'm thinking Tarangail was too. I think Caralain is Galads aunt. There is no way Galad can be older than Moiraine.

Rand does realize his relationship to Elayne. He askes Dyelin about the history of Andor and figures it out. Later he asks one of the other Ladies how close the "cuisin" business is in the families to find out if he can safely get it on with Elayne.

I don't remember Rand mentioning Galad as his half-brother, though he knows he has one. Remember Shaiel left a son she loved in these very chapters. Rand and Galad only met once, in TEOTW when he drops off the wall. Don't think he ever connects the dots.
Rebecca Starr
44. RobMRobM
@43. Tarengail is Moiraine's half brother - same father but M was child of second wife.

Rand never mentions that Galad is his half brother. My very strong suspicion is he must have figured it out during his discussions with Dyelin that all of the Andoran nobles visting him in Camelyn thought he looked like Tigraine, causing Dyelin to ask him bluntly who his mother was. (Rand rather cutely says his mother was a maiden name Shaiel, without disclosing that she was originally a wetlander.) It is one of the scenes to be awaited in the last three books when he discloses to Elayne, Dyelin, Galad, Elaida (!) who is mother is....
Rebecca Starr
45. RobMRobM
Of course, that makes Moiraine Rand's aunt....
Amar Ramraj
46. aiel1219
Jus backing up R.Fife here mostly.
I also think that Rand figures out the Forsaken in the waste bit from prophecy (well mostly)

"Power of the Shadow made human flesh,
wakened to turmoil, strife and ruin.The Reborn One, marked and bleeding,dances the sword in dreams and mist,chains the Shadowsworn to his will,from the city, lost and forsaken,leads the spears to war once more,breaks the spears and makes they see,truth long hidden in the ancient dream."
--TSR Chapter 6

This is the prophecy that Moiraine tells the girls Rand quoted to her. He's been reading alot of other prophecies and interpretations, so he may have just gotten quite a bit more out of those than we know. Also, he says that Lanfear provided him with the final clue about what he must do (while he was in the stone). This was just after she offers him to get a male forsaken to teach him. These things combined would have lead him to expect atleast Lanfear and a male forsaken to appear in the waste. Since the Aiel are so seperate from the rest of the world, the forsaken would most likely have to be outsiders... thus when a caravan of traders appears and so close to Ruhidean (unhindered)... well it don't exactly take sherlock holmes to figure this shit out. Of course he didn't know who exactly were the forsaken in the Peddlars Caravan but he was pretty sure they were there(Latere he tells use he suspected Kadere and that chick who eventually gets her head shaved by the maidens).
Sorry, I didn't realise how long this would be.
Rebecca Starr
47. RobMRobM
Separate point, and one made by another poster in an earlier thread (so I can't claim credit, even if I'd like to), but it seems clear that Janduin was ta'veren himself. Rob
Rebecca Starr
48. tacoma
AUgrad @17,

Your comment about Rand knowing it was Asmodean-as-Kadere is right on and is one of the reasons I really like this series. Many people have a tendency to make judgments with imperfect information--not to judge myself...sometimes it's all you have. In that respect, it's not surprising to me that Rand (et al) see evil eyes == evil's all he (and anyone) really knows about any of the Forsaken.

It isn't until after the skimming revelation and subsequent fallout that I realized that these people are just like their real-world counterparts, making due. The Forsaken are just as messed up as anyone else and that their concerns are informing their decisions (regardless of choices I might have made in their shoes).

Before this point in the story, I remember thinking that some of these characters are really flat. In retrospect I have a lot more tolerance for the various characters and the story became much more "real" and enjoyable for me. For instance, I'm not nearly as annoyed by Egwene as I once was. Faile, on the other hand....

Rebecca Starr
49. BookFairy
So many answered questions.This chapter rounds out Mat’s Odin characteristics, and gives us our first for shadowing of just how Mat has been marked by Rhuidean.

Couladin…not even fun to hate.

Its cool getting to see what the Aile Wise Ones are like, the things a “real” dreamer can do, and how different their hierarchy is from that of the Aes Sedai.

I never was an ooh ooh girl so I reserve my right to be annoyed by Egwene (at least for the time being).

I have to admit that even after having read this book several times I never caught the icon. This is one of those sections I didn’t like the first time I read it but now enjoy because I know why it’s important and who’s who.

Love the Hat!

Hey Rand guess why Avy hates you.
Rebecca Starr
50. zeropiel
@44 Never knew that about Moiraine, but it makes sense. Caraline was probably little sister to the guy who was killed by the Aiel, and is now high seat house Damodred. (I think)

Did Dyelin mention Galad? I can't recall. I remember Rand hiding his lineage though. I keep wondering why he keeps that information secret.
Amar Ramraj
51. aiel1219
@50 zeropiel
I think the reason he kept it secret was because at the time he was like "I am giving the Lion Throne and the Sun Throne to Elayne" and he needed the Lords in both places to support her. If he started revealing his relationship with a former daughter heir and a person with certain claims to the sun throne (i.e. his mommy) it could seriously undermine Elayne's claims as well as his claim of wanting her on the throne, and btw thw latter is already doubted by alot of people.
Rebecca Starr
52. Siuanfan
Yanno, I'd always assumed that Elayne was Rand's Twoo Wub and the other two were the taveren-generated-for-a-purpose-we'll-discover-later secondary romances, possibly because of her name being so similar to Ilyena and the fact that they were the ones to show a spark of romantic feeling toward each other first (even though he met Min first, I didn't notice a spark). But now I think Min is really the TW. He's much more comfortable with her, she makes him laugh, and he mentions quite often how much he prefers her company since the other two confuse the hell out of him. Maybe Min's the Twoo Wub, the other two are ta'veren-generated romances, possibly for the purpose of creating babies... and the Elayne/Ilyena thing was just a coincidence.
Rebecca Starr
53. CalaLily
Aha, I didn't catch the Lanfear icon either, but I DID get awfully suspicious when Keille came out of that wagon in a silver dress and moon-and-star combs stuck in her "coarse black hair".

Me: "Dhing any sort of foreshadowing, so my stunned reaction to "surprises" are genuine and somewhat laughable. *cough*
Rebecca Starr
54. jwhite
Rand did not know who was who in the peddlers caravan. He only had suspicions. Later in Rhuidean he asks her which one she was and she replys if he could believe that she would have fat old kellie?

Also another thought on Rands weirdness in this chapter is that he knew he had a very limited amount of time until the forsaken caught up to him and when this unusual peddler wagon train was heading was going (wagons east) the wrong direction, it was like a giant neon sign (maybe the three fold land is supposed to be nevada) for his paranoia to see.
Rebecca Starr
55. Rebecca Starr
Thanks jk24 - I like that theory on "it has begun"

Eswana - I think she is a completely different Dorindha. For all the wealth of names RJ throws at us, every once in a while there is a duplicate.

and yes I agree with those who think the Waste is southern Utah... I could never quite picture the Waste in my mind until I took a vacation there about 2 years after starting to read the series, and in my mind, I went, "Aha!"
Rebecca Starr
56. Albin0

I'm definetly of the snarky "god you're dumb" girl persuasion myself, yet Egwene has always been my favorite of the supergirls. I would like to think this is because she seems a lot more honest and up-front about some things than the others. For example: She tells Rand the truth about not being in love with him, and she is equally straight-forward with Gawyn about her love for him. When she does have to lie, she is always chafing about it on the inside, like when she is going behind the Wise Ones' backs, or even when she is controlling the tower whilst simultaneously trying to seem like a puppet-Amerlyn (sp?).

Most of the time I'm wishing some of the other girls would take a page from Egwene and be a little more open instead of sneakily manipulating things(2 letters Elayne, really?), yet I know this would make things less interesting, not more.
Rebecca Starr
57. Tony Zbaraschuk
Another thing to note: Elayne to Egwene to Avienda to Rand -- some of the characters are trying to share information and communicate to each other, and look at what happens? Massive mess-up in communications. So it's not that they aren't ever talking to each other; it's that when they try to do it bad things happen.

No perfect information flow: another major element of the series. ;)

Rand goes out into the Waste partly to draw the Forsaken after him so he can pull and capture one of them, but (just like the cleansing of saidin later) we don't see his decision-making at the time, or all the evidence he draws on to come to his conclusions. Like his friends, we have to take it on faith that he knows what he's doing.
Rebecca Starr
58. Smatt
Out of Team ENEMA (got to love that acronym)the only one who is not stupid is Min closely followed by Aviendha. While Elayne is the worst of the bunch Egwene certainly throws out a few howlers.

I will give Egwene credit for being open about who she loves but apart form that she does act superior and condescending, pretty much like most of the AS and Wiseones.

On the whole the females in WOT seem to regard the men as incompetents who have just learned how to tie their shoe laces and should not be left unsupervised.

Although the men do make a lot of crap decisions they do not generally think women are imbeciles. However, they do seem to think they are incapable of protecting themselves.

If there was some kind of chart to show the gender biased cock-ups I think the women would be ahead but not by much.

Anyone feel like creating that chart?
Rebecca Starr
59. tailspinner
Just because Mr. Jordan does things like this sometimes..

What if ?


Just a thought, I have a feeling that rand has to learn a crazy lesson of some sort (re Cadsuane) about being Strong but not hard. Maybe that's why these girls are here.

Re: Egwene mind changing, having once been a twenty year old girl and an Ooh-ooh girl at that. These girls generally like mentors and being accepted and rewarded. She might just be going with what those around her suggest, peer pressure is a banal explanation, but whatever.

Leigh, so glad you are back, I repeatedly miss the icon, some genius point it out to me, and I then forget about it the next time through. Thank you for being todays genius.
Chiara Elvira
60. elvyelvy
Oh my, ooh ooh-ness galore round here. I was one too, but having 4 mighty ooh ooh-ers, and other 3 would-be ones in my high school class sort of saved me. The concentration was so awful that my ooh ooh-ness found different roads to make me a pest, though it came always out in the open during English classes. I still wonder that my elder sister let me live… oh of course, she was Miss OOH- OOH-AWESOMESUPREME.

THE R.Fife, shameless self promotion indeed :-)

Rand keeping his lineage secret is due not only to his "I am giving the Lion Throne and the Sun Throne to Elayne"-scheme, but also to the fact that he’s not sure he can figure out how to survive TG – prophecies are not very encouraging about that, remember? His blood on-blahblah stuff. Moreover, he has accepted his saviour-of-the-world role, but he is not craving for personal power.

Off topic – and again maybe not – age issue, once more. Why all the wondering posts? When life expectancy was rather short, 18 – 19 marked a grown up and responsible individual, expected to take his/her place in the community. Kings and queens of the Middle Ages were expected to reign and lead at that same age, the lengthening of the “young” age is a thing of our society . True, age brought authority, and younger people had to defer to that a lot, but maturity came sooner, and children were considered adults on a small scale. See portraits, toddlers wear differently, otherwise children have a small-size version of their parents’ outfits.
See? Ooh-oohness + natural verbosity = = lecturing ranting tendency. (*sighs*)
Tess Laird
61. thewindrose
Aarrggg, a three hour meeting and I miss the beginning. I didn't like Egwene until KOD, but when I look back, I am amazed at how fast she did grow up. I have the upmost respect for her as she "battles" her way though the Tower winning the respect and approval of the TAS to become the Amyrlin Seat in one of the books after KOD. (At least that is what I am hoping for.)
I think Rand is a pretty sharp guy, granted he does have a mountain on his back.
I recognized Lanfear as Keille, but didn't figure out Asmo until it was revealed. Made sense that it would be him though.
Chiara Elvira
62. elvyelvy
Smatt@58 you sooo kindly volunteered...
Rebecca Starr
63. Smatt
Sighs, picks up book1, a pen and quietly begins to cry...
Rebecca Starr
64. Cobblestones
Re Mat's hat:

Is there any significance in that Lanfear (well Keille really) gives the hat to Mat? Why would she do what she did in that scene? I assume money is not an issue. Did she put some kind of 'finder' on the hat? If so, would her channeling make Rand suspicious (goosebumps)? He wouldn't of course know who had channeled (he might suspect Moiraine eavesdropping) hence the mysterious dialogue?
Rebecca Starr
65. gagecreedlives
Must be 2 different Dorindhas out there. Isnt Baels future wife a wise one and the one Matt sees is a maiden. Although if thats not the case I wonder if Matt would have the crazy in him to tell Bael that he played maidens kiss with his wife.

Smatt I hope you have a lot of time on your hand if your going to try and chart that.

I think on my first read through I knew something was up with the peddlers but no idea exactly what. Back then I dont think I had fully realised what all the different chapter icons meant.
66. Freelancer
Ahh, Leigh, I meant to amplify on this one earlier:
Rand asks Lan why he did not go with Moiraine, and Lan answers darkly that the Wise Ones “convinced” him not to go after her.

Yeaaahhhh. Lan says "convinced", but what the Wise Ones did was hold him bound in Air until he accepted their word that both Moiraine and he would die if he went into Rhuidean after her. They might respect Aan'allein as the only wetlander with so much ji, but they didn't think twice about hogtying him with the Power until he listened to them.
Chiara Elvira
67. elvyelvy
Smatt, don't forget lots of paper (*ducks to avoid the ink jar, books 1 to 11 and a box of tissues*)
Rebecca Starr
68. Laural
My boyfriend at the time gave me tSR as a graduation present, along with Red Mars, which I read first and hated and didn't read the other till the end of my sophomore year. So I was clueless, for sure, but the strength of this chapter made me want to get through the book and the rest of the series. I wish there was more Rand outwitting the Forsaken in the other books too. Sigh.
Rebecca Starr
69. Smatt
@ 67

I have had to give up. The weeping became sobbing and my tears ruined my rudimentary tally chart. I need waterproof ink and paper...

Oh, and 300 assistants. The force is not strong with me.
Rebecca Starr
70. Tankard of ale
Excellent blog as always. Over the years all of my hardcover copies have disappeared (loaned out, taken?) and now can only find WH.

Funds are tight at the moment and cannot afford to replenish my dilemma that was self made.

Thats why I so enjoy you Leigh as the blogger and the various commentators, as to refresh my memory and offer new insight.

Originally I missed the icons and their meanings. But now, years later I can see that and the subtle hints scattered throughout this nasterpiece.

This has been one of the most informative (and at times mind boggling) threads that I have ever had the pleasure to have read.

Gifted writers all, the knowledge of this thread stuns me. It also keeps me from posting at time for fear of sounding like a newbie or worse a fool.

Keep up the awesome work. I lurk to learn!
Chiara Elvira
71. elvyelvy
Smatt, your plight saddens me, recruiting of the 300 assistants will start at once. Be steadfst, the force will be with you. Always!

Btw, my eyes fell on ch 1 of TSR, when Min sees Sheriam, and
the red-haired Aes Sedai’s face seemed battered and bruised.

I don't recall Sheriam being beaten during the coup at the tower, so would that foreshadow Sheriam being beaten by somebody - possibly DF- in Salidar?
Sam Mickel
72. Samadai
I wasn't guilty of not catching what the icons meant, I just totally never looked at them the first several times reading them.

I am prety sure Rand knows about Galad being his half-brother. Someone (maybe Dyelin)mentions how Tigraine disappears leaving behind her son Galad and Taringail, who Morgase married to strengthen her ties to the throne.

I picked up on the forsaken band of peddlers right away, but also thought that Asmodean was Kadere. I was pretty sure Keille was Lanfear though with her comment about never offering a bargain twice to the same man.
Rebecca Starr
73. Randalator
YoSoyElJosh @16

When Rand suddenly develops his ladykilling complex, I get irritated. When Egwene, suddenly, is madly in love with Gawyn instead of Galad, I get irritated. When Egwene, suddenly, decides the Oath Rod makes her Aes Sedai, I get irritated.

But that is most likely the result of Aran'gar's patented screw-with-your-mind-massage. You can hardly blame her for that. Until it is revealed that the saidin chick had nothing to do with it, at least.

I do understand the events that occured which led her to those changes in her beliefs, but they still bother me. Egwene is pulled into Gawyn's dreams, and can't help returning his feelings for her, as he's such a super sweet guy. Egwene spends an enormous amount of time around Siuan and molds herself after her.

Yeah, the Gawyn obsession is forced. But Egwene becoming Siuan v2.0 is not that much of a change. She already brings all the major personality traits to the table. She's strong willed (only hightened by her experiences since leaving the Two Rivers), dedicated, intelligent (ooh ooh), she has at least some idea of dealing with several "interest groups" through observing Nynaeve the Wisdom and daddy mayor and got a bone grinding Wise One education on top of that. The only thing she actually had to learn from Siuan was political finesse and "Amyrlin daily chores 101".

The rest is pure Egwene...
Rebecca Starr
74. gagecreedlives
Tankard of ale@70

"Gifted writers all, the knowledge of this thread stuns me. It also keeps me from posting at time for fear of sounding like a newbie or worse a fool."

I know exactly how you feel. However I just though bugger it, Ive been called all sorts of different fool before (although never a fool of a Took)and just though Id keep throwing in my 2 cents anyway.

So Galad has 2 half brothers who are both going off the deep end. I cant wait to see the family reunion. I wonder if Camelyn has an equivalent for the Jerry Springer show.
Rebecca Starr
75. austin-c
@42 mark-p

It does seem to be a coincidence that both Rand and Mat are ~7 days in the ter'angreals.

I think the best explanation is that it took the 'finns that long to jam all the memories into Mat's head. Am I the only one?

I seem to recall that there was a dream or foretelling of mat chained up with the ashandarei.
Rebecca Starr
76. bookworm
@39 Eswana. Cool laydown of the situation.

@52 Siuanfan. I'm thinking you are projecting your own values here. Why can't one love three?

To whomever: I suppose Lanfear could read prophecy too, and so have Kadere's caravan pointed to Alcar Dal soo enough. Anybody remember when Rand burned "Selene's" letter? That was the tracker that Lanfear had left with Rand.

Re: "Ooh, ooh" persons. I suppose we might consider that behavior endemic around here. Lots of smart cookies around here. lol
Rebecca Starr
77. Rocephin
I wanted to add my (belated) thanks for the re-read, which has been fascinating.

I wanted to toss out something that had not been commented on. I had always taken it that Janduin was killed by Luc. Afterall, no one would look more like Shaiel (Tigraine) than her brother.

I was just curious what others thought? A)Too obvious to mention, or B)Too far out to mention.

I originally thought it too much of a coincidence, but dont we find out somewhere later in the books that Luc was basically bullied into going to the waste by Aes Sedai (Gitara, if I recall)? Thus suggesting that this was part of her dreaming/prophecy?
Richard Fife
78. R.Fife
Gage @ 74: Off topic completely, but I have a cat named Pippen (picture in my profile, actually), whom I call a "Fool of a Took" on a regular basis. I mean, why else name a cat that, right?
Rebecca Starr
79. Rebecca Starr
sadly, i do have a spreadsheet that includes a category of quotes that could generally be summed up as "women!" and those that could be summed up as "men!"

said with exasperation of course :)

though by far not a complete list, it's pretty thorough, there are 100 quotes in the first category, and 150 in the second, so yes, the edge goes slightly to women's exasperation.

::hands Smatt back his tissue box::
Rebecca Starr
80. Smatt
Appologies for jumping ahead.

If The Hat is a tracker placed on Mat by Lanfear then it is no longer working otherwise Cyndane would now exactly where he was and would be an ooh ooh girl and tell Moridin who wants RPM dead now.

@ 77

I also have always thought it was Tigrains brother.
John Massey
81. subwoofer
Sooo... glad to see many of us decided to get icons over the weekend. The rest of you, haul some ass.

@Smatt, love your post, quit your blubbering. You did ask for it.
I will give Egwene credit for being open about who she loves but apart form that she does act superior and condescending, pretty much like most of the AS and Wiseones.

Like you didn't see that coming. All AS seem to have their nose in the air and do things then act like they had permission all along.

As for the icons- the reason I had them figured out was the Trolloc skull and fist indicated a battle scene so I always keyed in to those.

I think one of the key things that is glossed over is the nudity. It was funny as hell when Rand was having issues in Fal Dara with his new clothes. Egwene had issues when she had to go to the sweat tents and enjoy the sight of 100 year old women nude.
Moiraine came back naked
...falling and staggering back to her feet as she climbed, as sunburned as Aviendha. He was startled to see she had no clothes on either. Women were crazy, that was all.

And then comes along Aviendha- who I think was pissed because Rand saw her naked and she did not arrange for him to see her.
Mat had been right; she was bare as she was born.

She flipped out because she saw Rand staring at her and thought he was filling his eyes... so to speak.

Which brings me to Kadere's eyes. AS, warders, Wise One's and Aiel, buddy is sweating like champion but his eyes give him away. Rand knew something was up, Aiel 1219 said it right. He just didn't nail down what.

And, I am a big fan of the ooh ooh girls. Great fun in the sack. Yes, I went there. Now I will burn for it. Saw an opening, took it- read 'em and weep.
and a map can be found here.
John Massey
82. subwoofer
Mat's medallion should be blocking any charm put on it by Lanfear. And Fain should be the only one who can track RPM by will.
Rebecca Starr
83. Renegade 247
I have to disagree with you that Rand knew Moraine was listening in on the conversation with the peddlers.

As we see later when Rand reads her letter after Moraine and Lanfear fall through the doorway, he wonders how she knew that Natelle was Asmodean. Now if Rand knew that she was listening in on the conversation with the peddlers, he would of figured out how she knew that Asmodean was teaching him. Since he doesnt know how Moraine knew about Asmodean, I fail to see how he knew she was listening in at this time with the peddlers.

Just my 2 cents worth. Loving the re-read and also your Jordancon post Leigh. Keep it up. :)
84. Freelancer
@77 Rocephin

Yes, I think it's taken as read that Luc killed Janduin when he went off to the blight. So Rand's uncle killed his own brother-in-law, Rand's father. Just another strike against Slayer.

@71 elvyelvy

I'm pretty sure that Min's visions for all the mayhem in the Tower, including injuries to Sheriam and Gawyn, included certainty that it all happens on the same day.

@83 Renegade 247

Good point, I'll have to re-evaluate the import of Rand's words in that area. He certainly seemed to me to be talking as if someone could understand his words, that he had to stay ahead of "them", that "it has begun", and so on. But only Mat was nearby, and having Mat's POV there, we know he didn't have a clue, in fact was concerned for Rand's sanity.

So it seemed logical that, given we're shown Wise Ones gathered around Moiraine and her twinkling kesiera, there must be a connection. But your point is valid, if Rand had guessed Moiraine would be listening, he wouldn't have been surprised at how much she knew in her letter.

So I suppose we, the readers, were the ones meant to "overhear" and understand his intent.
John Massey
85. subwoofer
... and Rand should be thinking with his big head- seeing as he knows, thanks to prophecy, that he has to face the DO at the end of these books. He should be more focused on that and less focused on how to get three different women in the sack. Unless he figures he's cannon fodder anyway and has a "smoke 'em if you got 'em." attitude.
Rebecca Starr
86. Smatt
Subwoofer, you raise an interesting point about the medallion. We know the medallion negates the OP when it is used directly at the wearer but we also know that it has no effect if the OP is used indirectly. It could be that it would have no effect on an inanimate object that has been interfered with by the OP.

Ooh, and here is a paradox. If it does negate objects that have been OP'ed then wouldn't it also negate itself? After all it was made with the OP...
87. Freelancer
@86 Smatt

Ooh, and here is a paradox. If it does negate objects that have been OP'ed then wouldn't it also negate itself? After all it was made with the OP...

Who says it was? It was a gift from the 'finn. That every female channeler in Randland calls it a ter'angreal doesn't mean it was fashioned with the OP. But if you're going to go there, why not ask how Far Madding constructed a massive ter'angreal that imparts the properties of a stedding? I find it amusing that Verin admits the thing can't be studied because of what it is, and yet Elayne wants to study Mat's medallion. As if there were a way to study it. We know it blocks both Saidar and Saidin, so unless it's susceptible to the True Power, go fish.
Sara H
88. LadyBelaine

Lord Rand of House Mantear. Are there any Mantears left? Any traces at all?

Lord Perival Mantear shows up and is a juvenile lord who is noted as being precociously wise and politically astute, and throws in behind Elayne in the later books.

No idea what his relationship is to Modrellein, Tigraine, Luc and Rand, though.
John Massey
89. subwoofer
wtf- I raise many interesting points. I am just that kind of guy. Was the medallion power wrought or 'finn wrought? Mat still has good times
"I thank you, Wise One. And I won't ask if you added anything just to give it that ... memorable... taste/"

And I am glad he has his spear. Before he gets Shen an Calhar, he needs it.
Roger Powell
90. forkroot
Re Mat's hat ... Am I the only one who felt "yuck! gross!" when he first got it? That hat comes right off the head of a heavyset, sweaty dude on a typical hot day in the waste. As a desert dweller myself, I can assure you that you wouldn't want to put on someone else's hat once they've sweated it up.
Rebecca Starr
91. hoping to be of the blood
@42, 75
Both Rand and Mat in Rhuidean for seven days always seemed unlikely to me, especially since little time elapsed for the visits to the finn via the doorway in tear. Maybe time flows differently with the foxes. No good explanation that I can see.

Agree that the reread is great. Participating has made me read even closer and appreciate the books more than ever.

I think it is generally agreed that Luc killed Janduin, but was it Slayer in the Luc persona or did it happen pre-merge? I think someone worked out the timeline but I can't find it.

I have a cocker spaniel named Perrin. My wife has no idea where the name came from. She thinks it sounds french.

Avi and the aiel seem nonplussed by nakedness so I don't think that is the reason Avi was mad. I agree with the great summary of Eswana @39

I'm a little surprised to see how many women enjoy tWoT. I always thought SciFi/Fantasy was a male hobby. Great to see
Sean Jones
92. PersonOfTheDragons
I'm pretty sure that he doesn't care how sweaty the hat is at that point forkroot....he wouldn't have just blurted out "I's give a gold mark for a hat like that." He's hot, not used to the waste and it's bright!
Rebecca Starr
93. gagecreedlives

That made me lol as my initials are actually C.A.T.

I thinks its pretty much accepted that slayer killed Rands dad. Im not sure why I am certain of that fact but I am. Do people have any thoughts on whether it was just an unfortunate coincidence that he met slayer in the blight or was this an organised hit by the shadow?
Rebecca Starr
94. Smatt
The Ter'angreal in Far Madding, if I remember correctly, was a device constructed from several parts which in conjuction duplicated a stedding. They might not have the same end result if seperated. The medallion is a single object.

It would be good to find out for definate if it is Finn or OP wrought. I always assumed it had been made by with the OP. This does not mean it was made during the AOL. It could have been made in a previous age with different knowledge. We know the OP users in the AOL did not know everything.
Rebecca Starr
95. CireNaes
My wife is one of those 'ooh ooh' girls, but she has really toned down over the past four years or so. My daughter is due in May and I really hope she doesn't have both my temper and my wife's 'oohyness'. I got the icon the first time, but didn't get that Slayer whacked Janduin until the fourth time I read this book. I still feel a little sheepish about that. No Aladdin jokes please.
Rebecca Starr
96. Joe Bono
@ Tailspinner (59)

The three loves of Rand as the three Greek words for love really resonates, but I'd actually suggest swapping Aviendha and Elayne, giving us:

Aviendha as Agape:
Self sacrificing, divine, familial love - representing the relationship between Rand and the people of the dragon. Rand as savior, chosen one, shedding his blood on the rocks of Shayol Ghul to defeat the Dark One.

Min as Philia:
Brotherly love, connection with common folk, caring for someone for their sake, not your own. Rand as preserver and peacemaker, trying to leave a legacy of schools, good laws, and unified (if not united) nations post-Tarmon Gai'don.

Elayne as Eros:
Passionate, romatic, and sexual love. Rand as the fool, acting on whim and desire without thinking through consequences thoroughly enough. Holding Cairhein and Andor for Elayne instead of focusing on establishing strong, stable stewards/rulers. Bipolar activity, constant longing, uncertaintly about what Elayne wants from him (two letters?!?!).
Rebecca Starr
97. Joe Bono
@ hoping to be of the blood (91)

I think it's established somewhere else in the 'Finn mythology that time can flow differently in their domain. I remember someone mentioning a story where someone goes to Finnland (maybe through the Tower of Ghenji? Could be from Perrin's wolfdream conversation with Birgette earlier in this book) and sleeps a night there and wakes up a hundred years later in Randland ...

Another thread to pull on with time distortions - Snakeland had obvious warps or folds in its' spatial dimensions, Fox land may have time folds, giving us a completely different space-time geometry when considering them as a whole.
John Massey
98. subwoofer
@Joe, that was Mat recounting a tale
We aren't going upstairs to find ten years gone, are we, like Bili in the story?
Richard Fife
99. R.Fife
@91: Girls in SFF. I actually talked to Tom Doherty a hair on that. He had commented that there are a lot more girls reading SciFi/Fantasy recently, and even lauded Stephanie Meyer as a "gateway" for them into the realm of "what if".

@97: It was Bili, who went to sleep for 10 years and woke up with a bag of gold. Definately sounds Finnish.
Rebecca Starr
100. ZamIt
Bair to Mat - "Boy"
Mat to Bair - "Old Woman"
Bair to Mat - "Young Man"
Mat to Bair - Bow and "Thank You"
All the ladies = loving Mat
John Massey
101. subwoofer
@Hoping to be
He froze as soon as he opened the door to his bedchamber. Aviendha had not chosen to remain with the tents. She stood before the washstand, with its mismatched, cracked bowl and pitcher, a cloth in one hand a bar of yellow soap in the other. She had no clothes on. She seemed as stunned as he, as incapable of moving.
"I..." She stopped to swallow, big green eyes locked on his face. "I could not make a sweat tent here in, so I thought I would try your way of..."...."I thought you would remain longer at the bridge. I..." Her voice rose in pitch;her eyes widened in panic."I did not arrange for you to see me! I must get away from you. As far away as I can! I must!"

Aeil do not have a problem being naked as a rule, their sweat tents prove that out. But if they are trying to catch someone's interest, I think the rules change. I can't find the passage, but doesn't someone instruct one of RPM on how to be seen naked, dance like no one is watching, then realize that they are being stared at and act all coy.

Aviendha, at the point in the book where the Wise One's ask her to watch Rand, seriously balks. She knows in her heart she loves him and does not want to betray Elayne's trust so here we are. Her cranky that Rand saw her naked coming back from Rhuidean.

And I thank you all for challenging me on some of my opinions. It is making me a better reader and I have been leafing through pages like a heathen, trying to recall where I saw something. Having a memory like a steel sieve doesn't help either. The end result is that I have a better understanding and greater appreciation for RJ's wonderful work.
John Massey
102. subwoofer
Does anyone else see the add for "Air Randy" Jordan shoes?
Rebecca Starr
103. Smatt

It is the Maidens to Rand on how to get Avi to notice him.

Can't remeber what book.
Rebecca Starr
104. Planeswalker
@Leigh - you really are that girl? that little "annoying girl" who shoots her hand up in class? hahaha very funny, i'm trying to imagine...

i didn't at first recognize those similarities with 'Egwene' and 'know-it-all-girl', but yea... i think i get it... and it does annoy me, those little brats...hehehe :)
Joseph Blaidd
105. SteelBlaidd
Eswana @39
Excellent summation. It probably starts back before the rings though. I always took her little talk with Rand at the Portal Stone on one level as "Your kind of cute and I might be interested but my friends sister has claimed you so I not going to do anything about it. One of the other things to remember is that Aviendha has, up till this point, had NO interest in 'boys' (or girls for that mater;)) and she has no interest in a relationship or marriage and really resents the loss of freedom that goes with becoming a Wise One.

This is the first time she has ever dealt with this kind of interaction, so I bet she figured she could ignore her attraction and it would go away. But then she's 'told' it wont go away and Rand starts accidentally following through the 'proper' courting procedures (just like Mat with Tuon and Perrin with Faile) and it all goes down hill from there.

Re Egwene. She definitely has Class Rep written all over her, and is more than a bit of a Miss-Know-it-All. I was in the "please for the love of Mike will somebody else raise their hand this time............. fine" group.

The thing that Egwene comes to realize about the Oaths is that they are really the only thing holding the Aes Sedei together as a group. All of the other Chaneler groups have a culture they are embedded in that helps them stay a cohesive group, but the AS are at best a"society of hermits" in Suin's words. As bad as they are now about going off in their own directions imagine if there was nothing to hold them together.

I like the Girls as the Three Loves but right now I think Min is Leading the Eros Count by a significant margin.
LT Tortora
106. Lucubratrix
I bet plenty of us here were in the "ooh-ooh-ooh" club at some point in our scholarly careers....

I don't recall whether I picked up on Lanfear's identity the first time I read this. I'd like to think I did, but that might just be a case of wishful thinking. As far as Rand picking up on it, I wonder if it wasn't Lews Therin whispering to him.
Greg Bloom
107. MuleHeadedLummox
subwoofer @101

I think you're right on most of that, except that it might not be that she loves him already, but has seen in the rings that she will fall in love with him.

The ironic thing about the whole Rand/Avi relationship is that her refusal to treat him as special is probably the main reason he falls in love with her. I'm pretty sure that at some point we find out that what attracts him to the three girls is that they don't treat him differently just because he is the Dragon Reborn/Car'a'carn. So if she had acted normally to him instead of scorning him constantly, he might not have fallen for her.

As far as Egwene goes, I think the point I started really liking her was around LOC, when we finally see her starting to mature. She definitely acts the youngest of the main cast (except maybe for Mat) until the Wise Ones really get their hooks into her. However, she really matures and acts more as an adult as the series goes on. She still does some dumb things, but she seems to actually learn from her mistakes, unlike some other characters.
Amar Ramraj
108. aiel1219
@70. Tankard of ale
Gifted writers all, the knowledge of this thread stuns me. It also keeps me from posting at time for fear of sounding like a newbie or worse a fool.

:) One thing I like about this community is that everyone can post their opinions and when sum1 gets it wrong other more knowledgeables will let u know without makin u feel like an arse.

I totally enjoy posting my ideas and seeing them picked apart, that way I get a whole lot more insight into the books and very often my incorrect notions are dispelled. It's one of the joys of being apart of this community.

I think atleast trice a week I am stunned by people's knowledge and insight of the WoT world!
Thanks guys... and I know Leigh doesn't need more props but... thank you fearless leader (YOU'RE AWESOME!!!) :)
Rebecca Starr
109. jwhite
I have never read a scene were Mat's medallion stopped a man from channeling at him. Is there one and if so does the medallion turn cold or does something different happen to it?
Lyle Caldwell
110. Tower_of_Ganja
The medallion didn't save Matt from Rhavin's channeling in Caemlyn, though Matt may or may not remember that.

But that was "indirect" magic, not specifically male, that made the difference.
F Shelley
111. FSS
@109 - I haven't read all the comments till now so hopefully I'm not repeating anything: Mat's medallion saves him from being Compulsed by Arangar in Salidar during the Rebel Aes Sedai Drunken Barn Dance.

@110 - It is well documented that a channeler can fling an object at Mat and it will hit, such as a glob of mud (Adelas/Vandene) or a wall falling on him (Seanchen attack on Ebou Dar, and in this case, the Lightning in Caemlyn)...
Joseph Blaidd
112. SteelBlaidd
Halima channels at Mat during the Dancing after Egwine's Raising to the Stole.
Amar Ramraj
113. aiel1219
@109 Jwhite

It should have been nothing, but before he had gone ten paces the foxhead went icy cold on his chest. He spun around, looking furiously for anything at all. What he saw was Halima staring at him in the firelight. Only for an instant before she seized a tall Warder's arm and whirled back into the dance, but he was sure he had seen shock on that beautiful face.
--LoC Chapter 44

This is the only instance I can remember where Saidin is channelled at Mat and the medallion negates it. Even this is a bit iffy. But maybe RJ confirmed that Halima did channel at him, I’m not sure.

@110 Tower_of_Ganja
The lightning channeled at him was caused by a weave of the one power but it isn't a weave itself. WHile the medallion causes weaves to melt before they touch the wearer, the things created or moved by the weave can still cause trouble.
Makes me wonder what would happen to Gholam if someone hurled lightning at him or mb a really big fireball.

EDIT: ohh sorry, I see several people beat me to it. But anyways am leaving it as it is... took too long to type LOL!!!
Rebecca Starr
114. Immortal One
Another thing that Rand seems to have deduced is the way to cleanse Saidin.

Also, I'm fairly certain that Rand knew that one of the peddlers was Asmodean - but he most likely thought that he was Kadere, not Natael, with all those times Rand warns Mat about Kadere's eyes not changing and implying that Kadere is evil.
Lyle Caldwell
115. Tower_of_Ganja
Right, that's what I meant by "indirect" magic.
Amar Ramraj
116. aiel1219
Hmmmmm...another shower induced thought.
I wonder what happens if someone channels an inverted weave at Mat while he's wearing the medallion or at the Gholam. Has this been done before? I don't remember.
Rebecca Starr
117. alexonthemovetx
I'm posting without reading all the comments, but i've always felt that Rand was expecting Lanfear and a male forsaken; maybe one of Rand's questions to the Finns was something along the lines of "How do I learn to use the OP?" and the answer was one of the male forsaken must/will teach you. Or he remembers what Lanfear offered him (tSR -ch 9), Asmo to teach him, and then they could destroy him "once he has taught you all you need to know."
Just my two cents, although i had no clue what was going on the first time either :)
Lyle Caldwell
118. Tower_of_Ganja
@116 aiel1219

I don't think it works that way - the inverted weaves cannot be seen by other channelers, but the weaves themselves behave as any other, and the medallion should dissolve them as well.

Maybe the medallion and gholam would be affected by Moridin's True Power. Though given the general reluctance of Forsaken to use the TP (before Moridin's reserving it for himself), there had to be some other way (than TP) for the forsaken to control/command the gholams. AFAIK, that issue and how Grey Men are created/commanded, have not been addressed in the text.
Rebecca Starr
119. jwhite
Thanks everyone,

I was hoping that saidin would have caused it to go warm but oh well...

... and well spotted
Rebecca Starr
120. LongStrider
They could also have answered someone from the Age of Legends, since he's also learning from LT once he really get that second voice in his head going.
Rebecca Starr
121. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
At first Aviendha resented Rand because he was willing to go to Rhuidean even though he was not asked whereas she who was strongly invited did not want to come. It's as if her unwillingness to do her duty was being thrown in her face.
After Rhuidean, when she saw what was to happen, well she still did not like the idea of betraying Elayne and being told she would fall in love with this man as if it was not her choice.
Chiara Elvira
122. elvyelvy
hoping@91 SF/fantasy a male hobby? Since when? my father fed me bread, comics and adventure books since my early days. Before I was 11 I had swallowed Verne and the whole lot, then I attacked Iliad (my father commented, not for the first time "That girl's gonna give me headaches. Plenty of headaches").
And I remember the fateful encounter with the Lord of the Ring, a hot summer day, nothing to do, all friends scattered on holiday, and me idly walking and flicking through the shelves of the library. Suddenly I stopped and grabbed this huuuuge book, with this fancy cover. Hmmm, the title sounded promising, I had time on my hands, plus I like big books (size matters, you know). I started LotR the following day over breakfast, and literally devoured it in three days. Couldn’t put it down, I did not answer the phone calls, I went to lunch and dinner reading it. Then I started buying all the Sf/fantasy books I could. I even managed to come back from London with some 40 books in my luggage (you can’t blame me, I was fed up with the lousy translations we were given, and internet was not available those days) and 3/4 of my clothes hidden in my aunt’s house – she found them bit by bit for a long time afterwards, I think.
And believe me I wasn’t the only one even then, so long ago.

@all - about Rand and his three girls. I remember distinctly (*puts glasses on and grabs a few books from her desk, going through them superfast*) that… oh,here it is, WH, ch 12, when Rand is multibonded, and (Elayne’s POV) we get that
“He loved all three of them. And that made her want to laugh with joy. Other women might find doubt, but she would always know the truth of his love.”

So apparently Rand does not feel a different kind of love, he loves them in the same way and with the same passion. As I recall, we know for sure that he and Min , ahem, do not shake hands and say good night. So much for an Agape-style relationship with Min.
Though it can be argued that they probably cover different roles in his life.

What Aiel says is true, Tankard@70, we have opinions, post them, discuss them (hotly at times), dissect them so that our appreciation of the books is heightened. Good job, and a collective pat on the shoulders for all of us, and hooray to our patient captain, Wonder-Leigh.
Rebecca Starr
123. JamesEdJones
Just had to say, Snarky girls are WAAAYYYYY better than Ooh ooh girls. Primarily because the Ooh ooh girls are usually hypocrites in these books because they don't actually share any useful information.

Leigh compares Egwene to Hermione, but Hermione always proofreads Harry and Ron's work, and tries to make sure they have all of the information they need.

When do we see Egwene do this? NEVER! All she does is try to stick her finger in other folks work, and mess around with wrong information. She doesn't qualify as an Ooh ooh girl because she doesn't have the right information, and she doesn't share what she has.

Also, have to shout out some love for Avi. Her attitude towards Rand produces some of the most hillarious scenes in the entire series. The first time through I kept wondering why she was such a pain, but Rand didn't do anything about it. So, I figure it's not my place to stop Socrates from drinking the hemlock.

The second time through you realize Rand's attracted to her, but he doesn't accept or acknowledge it. The denial on both sides is the best part about it (Cold Rocks Hold, anyone?).

I remember feeling nothing but sympathy with the adult characters. Rhuarc and the Wise Ones have almost as much information as we do in this situation. Can you imagine putting yourself in their place and trying to make this work? So much fun...
philip hodgson
124. hodgsopg
I don't think that Aviendha's problem with Rand has much to do with Elayne. She pushes Elayne on him in an attempt to stop him falling in love with her. Her problem is that all she wants is to be a Maiden of the Spear, she does not want to be a Wise One, she does not want to fall in love with a man, particularly a non-Aiel, and a swordsman too, and she has seen what his coming will do to the Aiel, which was probably much worse in many of the alternate futures she has seen. But betraying Elayne is about the only thing she can accuse him of.
Rebecca Starr
125. Randalator
I don't think that Aviendha's problem with Rand has much to do with Elayne. She pushes Elayne on him in an attempt to stop him falling in love with her.

No, there's definitely more to that.

Beside what she had incurred toward Elayne (comment: sleeping with Rand), her toh toward Rand (comment: him saving her from Lanfear) was a termite mound beside the Spine of the World.
(LoC, ch. 19)

If pushing Elayne on Rand were just a means of evading her own feelings, she wouldn't care about toh towards Elayne. But she even contemplates killing herself to meet her toh. That's quite extreme even for Aiel standards and keeping in mind that Elayne is a wetlander who doesn't even follow ji'e'toh it's just completely off the scale.
Rebecca Starr
126. birgit
I wonder if he’s ever going to tell anybody about that? Not that he needs to, I guess, but I just think it would be cool if someone besides him knew that he is actually of royal blood, just to see their reactions.

Doesn't Dyelin figure it out when she tells Rand about Tigraine?

I forgot about the spears falling in a perfect circle at Rand and Mat. Is there any significance here? I feel like Mat's luck and the Tavareness^2 may have done it, but I don't know.

In Tear Rand walks past a man who drops fish that fall in a circle like the spears, so it must be ta'veren.

Anybody remember when Rand burned "Selene's" letter? That was the tracker that Lanfear had left with Rand.

He burns the letter when the others catch up with him and they are in the new inn after the old one burned down.

But if you're going to go there, why not ask how Far Madding constructed a massive ter'angreal that imparts the properties of a stedding?

And why do the channel detectors work in a stedding-like place?
Amar Ramraj
127. aiel1219
@125 Randalator
I think she contemplates killing herself due to her toh towards Rand, from him saving her life. She contemplates killing Rand to meet her toh towards Elayne I think... I just can't wrap my mind around it being that she could meet toh incurred when Rand saved her by killing him... then again yah never know :S

She had toh toward him, but much more toward Elayne. All he had done was save her life.

Killing Rand al'Thor would meet one toh, killing herself the second, but each toh blocked that solution to the other.

@126 brigit
Dyelin doesn't figure out he is Tigraines's son, exactly, she is suspicious about his resemblance to Tigraine and asks who his mother is. He tells her Shaiel and Janduin are his parents and he will swear it on any oath. She is relieved and then tells him about his uncanny resemblance to Tigraine.
Rebecca Starr
128. bookworm
Randalator, honor is all Aviendha has to cling to. The Wise Ones said somewhere that she wears her honor like some kind of clothing (or something, I forget exactly). Kind of like wearing it on her sleeve. It doesn't matter whether Elaine follows the Aiel way, or not.

I think the greater consensus of us have no idea just what honor means to non-Wise One Aiel. Somehow, I think it is a deeply ingrained over-compensation for failing the Aes Sedai and abandoning the Way of the Leaf.

Aviendha had promised to watch Rand for Elaine. She failed her promise to Elaine by falling in love, and consumating that love with Rand. She likely also feels that Rand failed Elaine in whatever romantic promise she thought he and Elaine had made to one another (in truth, none at all).

So, her honor was diminished by her own failure, hence her consideration of suicide. She viewed Rand as having lost honor (conflicted as she was about him being Aiel, or not) by having succumbed to Aviendha's lust instead of remaining chaste for Elaine. So, her consideration of killing him to satisfy honor.

Convoluted, yes. Better discussed over ale? Surely. But, another nod to RJ delving into relational and societal complexities. Good stuff.
John Massey
129. subwoofer
Yes, I am all over discussing things over Aiel ale. I believe elvyelvy came up with that stroke of genius several posts ago(must give credit where it is due).
Also wanted to give a shout out for the best handles so far- toss up between MuleHeadedLummox and Tower_of_Ganja. Good times.

Randalator... dog with a bone... tenacious, but let 'er go.

Aiel1219@108 sums it up nicely again. I like trowing things out there as fodder for discussion, then watching it burn on the pyre of WTF were you thinking...

elvyelvy, it was grade 4 and my teacher Mrs. O'Shaunessey, started reading us C.S. Lewis. Got hooked and it went downhill from there. The local library had a summer reading contest and I think the goal was 20 books by the end of summer. I shattered that one...

And people... you are killing me with this ooh ooh girls talk. Don't make me post a clip to show you the error of your ways.
Rebecca Starr
130. gagecreedlives
Mr Woofer I personally am a slow learner and will probably need that clip show.
Rebecca Starr
131. JamesEdJones
129 Subwoofer

I think we'll have to include "Mr Woofer" in the list of best handles. Thanks, Gagecreedlives. :) And we'll all be more impressed if you share some insight beyond a number and CS Lewis (every library has a large selection of Dr Seuss, after all. lol).

BTW please share the clip.
Blake Engholm
132. UncrownedKing
Bet you won't woofer

@122 elvy
I love the scene that follows the multi-bonding. The reactions of Min, Avi and Birgette (and their frantic search for oosquai) while Elayne and Rand are ..... indisposed, is hilarious. Sorry had to comment on it.
Lannis .
133. Lannis
Late again... and basically my thoughts have already been expressed... oh well.

jk24 @ 18: re: Rand saying "it has begun" and referring to binding a Forsaken as a teacher... I agree--it wasn't until a later reread that I had any idea what Rand was speaking of, but knowing where the story was going, I just chalked it up to the Gonna Catch Me A Forsaken plan. And we all know that Lanfear *did* give him the idea...

UncrownedKing @ 33: I'm a member of the "WoT 1st Read Noob Club," too!

Tankard of ale @ 70: Gifted writers all, the knowledge of this thread stuns me. It also keeps me from posting at time for fear of sounding like a newbie or worse a fool.

Aw, shucks--I think we're all appreciative of your kind words. But by all means, please post! I know I, myself, have had my ideas/memory corrected on several occasions--but no shame! That's the point--it's a conversation, and (for the most part) we are respectful of each other's opinions. Please jump in--that's the fun! :)

subwoofer @ 81: Sooo... glad to see many of us decided to get icons over the weekend. The rest of you, haul some ass.

::Cringes:: I keep looking for an avatar but haven't found one I like! ::pouts::

forkroot @ 90: re: the gross factor in Teh Hat... um, yeah... I remembered Mat got the hat from the peddlers, but I have to say, on this reread, it was a big ol' EW!

Oh, and I ? Aviendha. :)
Galen Brinn
134. GatheringStorm
Of all the ENEMA girls, Min is probably my favorite. Aviendha would come next (except when she's gushing all that near-sister/first-sister crap to Elayne). Nynaeve (starting in Winter's Heart when she finally stops being a total PITA) comes in really close to Aviendha. Elayne and Egwene? Meh...the whole way around. Those two come place a way distant last.

Even FAIL (TM) kind of grows tolerable (in spite of the constant territory marking and other juvenile behavior, she does generally try to help Perrin). While E&E just keep sinking. Maybe that will change in the remaining three books...
Rebecca Starr
135. Lsana
I'm late, I know, but there were a few things I really wanted to say about these chapters:

On Couladin:
This didn't bother me on earlier re-reads, but it does here: why don't they do something about Couladin? Everyone knows he is going to be trouble (Lan's warning to Rand was one of the biggest "Duh!" moments in the series so far for me), and he's given the Wise Ones more than enough excuses to come down on him like a ton of bricks. So why don't they do something about him rather than whining about how "Shaido dogs have no honor"?

Also, incidentally, why aren't there any Shaido Wise Ones here? They are the ones who need a new clan chief, so I would think they would have brought at least one of their existing WO to Rhuidean in order to influence who is sent.

On Egwene:
The girl annoys me here to no end. Usually, I find her the most tolerable of the Supergirls, but here she is acting like a dangerous brat. She isn't acting like Hermione, she's acting like a cross between a mad scientist and a spoiled brat. She wanders off into TAR alone, something the Wise Ones clearly regard as something akin to trying to build a nuclear bomb, and also something that she had specifically given her word she wouldn't try to do (a promise she never had any intention of keeping). When she gets caught, all she can do is whine about how unfair it is that she has to accept any limits at all. I have no sympathy whatsoever for her.

On the Aes Sedai trust/oath rod issue:
I do think Egwene is sort of onto something here. The Aes Sedai tend to use the 3 oaths as a sort of ethical crutch. They are bound not to lie, attack people, or make weapons, so they are good guys, everyone should know that, and they can do whatever they want within those oaths. If the oaths were removed, however, in the short term, hatred and mistrust of the Aes Sedai would skyrocket to levels not seen since the breaking. In the long term, though, it would probably help; Aes Sedai who wanted a reputation as trustworthy would actually have to act in a trustworthy manner, rather than just assuming that because everyone knows they can't lie, they should automatically be trusted.

But there's a larger issue here that Egwene doesn't seem to get, and it drives me nuts. Ultimately, the Aiel trust the Wise Ones, because the Wise Ones are Aiel, loyal to sept, clan, and the Aiel as a whole. Similarly for the Windfinders. The Aes Sedai are outsiders to everyone. They owe their loyalty to the White Tower, and Light only knows what it's agenda might be. A good Aes Sedai might be liked and respected but never trusted the way someone who was part of a society might be. It seems to me that Egwene's plan to make all channelers part of the White Tower is more likely to diminish the status of Windfinders and Wise Ones rather than raising the Aes Sedai.
Richard Fife
136. R.Fife
Re: Couladin needing "taken care of".

Well, the Shaido may have no honor, but everyone else does, and anyone on any leg of a Rhuidean trip is supposed to be safe. So yes, the Shaido are honorless, and if they actually do dance the spears, Aiel will f him up, but until then, he can be as inflamatory as he wants.

No clue on why no Shaido WOs showed up. Perhaps your own clan's wise ones cannot say yea or naye to Clan Chief candidacy. Would be a logical step of check and balance seeing as it is apparent that other clan's WOs can say Y/N.
Galen Brinn
137. GatheringStorm
R.Fife @ 136,

I think the lack of Shaido WOs is more due to the location of Shaido territory to Rhuidean. It's mentioned in the upcoming chapters that the Shaido territories are way on the other side of BFE and the Tardaad are much closer. It's therefore, much easier to have other WOs perform the necessary duties if they are going to be nearby or are already there.

They can set all this up via Dreaming to one another...
Richard Fife
138. R.Fife
Couladin and Mauradin still had to come from Shaido land regardless. You think they coulda brought some WOs with them.
Rebecca Starr
139. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Egwene's idea is to build a vehicle for allowing Aes Sedai greater access to societies all over and end their isolation.
IMHO Egwene's plan will eventually get the Aes Sedai back to the status they purportedly enjoyed in the AoL and worthier of the name Servants of All. Like any plan the Aes Sedai make though, the road will be long, hard, convoluted and full of roundabout, backward paths, and several instances of just plain getting lost.
Chiara Elvira
140. elvyelvy
R.Fife@136 about Shaido WO, there was no mentioning of them at Rhuidean, yet I do remember clearly that early in KoD Therava tells Sevanna that a new clan chief is going to be elected as Bandhuin (or something like that) has left for Rhuidean with an escort and 4 WO to stand witness. Yet I am just relying on memory, so I might be wrong (can someone please check?). In which case it is not clear how WO are chosen as witnesses of passing the test.
Blake Engholm
141. UncrownedKing

Thats correct. The Shaido got fed up with Sevanna's psycho bs and sent a contingent to Rhuy under her nose. thats a woman who deserves to be spanked unmercifully then roasted over an open flame until she grows the hell up.

Or maybe its all because shes insane.
Richard Fife
142. R.Fife
crazy, i can tell you about crazy. Try sitting on the phone with Dell for 2 hours with undeniable proof that they sent you a bad processor while they try and send you everything except a processor. GARAGARAFHSDFLJDOFAJWAAAH

Ahem, yes, I forgot about the Shaido and WO thing later. Guess Couladin/Mauradin were just WO-less or something. Or maybe the Shaido were still breaking tradition since there were no other WOs from other clans to stand witness.
Chiara Elvira
143. elvyelvy
I think there are no clues as to the WO-witnessing business. What if a WO says "Ok, go" and another pops out and says big NO? we just don't get all the rules for every single dealing in Randland.
Alice Arneson
144. Wetlandernw
Yeah, so I'm late too... Caught up on the reading last night, but by then had not enough functional brain cells to post a coherent comment. We'll see if I can do better this morning. 'Course, all the good stuff has been said already, but that's never stopped us, has it?

First: someone already said it, but I don't think Rand's POV regarding the "everything rests on three farmboys" is a validation of the Character Pyramid. Sorry, Leigh, just means that he doesn't have any idea yet (for that matter, at this point neither do we) just how important the girls will be. Especially Egwene.

Second: Ch 35 - Oh, darn, I was so proud of myself for seeing it, and here Egwene actually said it in the book: here's the second culture in which channelers function as an integral part of society without extraneous "binding". Sorry I can't give credit to the posters (not enough oomph to go back and find them) but two very valid points have been made re: her 180 on the Oath Rod. One, it could be due to Compulsion from Halima or two, it could be that she realizes that it's the only thing that holds AS together. Wow. Both great possibilities - too bad they're mutually exclusive! It will really be interesting to see how this plays out in AMoL. And whoever it was that said it, (found you: alreadymad @139) the concept of bringing all channelers together so that they can all be more free AND more deserving of the name "Servants of All" has some awesome potential.

Three: Ooh-ooh-girls. Okay, charter member. *sigh* Except that I was too shy to be quite so totally forward with it. Probably the saving grace, even if everyone hated me for always getting the top grade on the test. Leigh, I think you're right in figuring out a lot of the bipolar reaction of the fandom. Good call. I think I like Egwene (in spite of her mistakes, many of which deserve a good slap upside the head) partly because she has the rest of the traits I wish I did: the courage to throw herself unreservedly into whatever she's doing and the commitment (stubborness? tenacity?) to keep going when it's tough. Oh, and that whole "do what you have to do and pay the price" thing - she may chafe at her restrictions, and sound like she's whining a lot, but she never hides behind someone else's mistakes as an excuse for her own.

bookworm @128
I think the greater consensus of us have no idea just what honor means to non-Wise One Aiel.
I would say, any Aiel. You're right, though. We live in a culture where promises are lightly made and lightly broken, where dishonesty is only bad if you get caught, where cheating is acceptable if you have "a good reason" and I could go on but won't. I think the concept of ji-e-toh is very foreign to us, just as Rand's sense of chivalry is becoming increasingly foreign to our culture. There's a whole dissertation here, but I'm not gonna make it this morning.

Last comment: girls reading scififan... Well, ever since about third grade! Mr. Hamilton read The Sword in the Stone to our class, and since I sucked it up, he loaned me The Hobbit to read on my own. Been hooked ever since. Couldn't quite handle LoTR until 5th or 6th grade, Silmarillion took more years after that... Lewis's Chronicles of Narnia and Space Trilogy came in there somewhere, and then in high school I got into Anne McCaffrey, Ursula LeGuin, a few others like that. College brought exposure to Marion Zimmer Bradley, Terry Brooks and lots more of that ilk. And (with that first exception) those were all brought to my attention by other girls. When I got married, my husband got me interested in more of the scifi (as opposed to fantasy): Asimov, Verne, etc. By now, I find that its not the genre so much as the author that determines my enjoyment, though the authors I enjoy most tend to be fantasy. (In this context, I won't go into all the other great literary genres out there.) E.g. in SciFi, I can't stand Kim Stanley Robinson or Neal Stephenson, purely because of the writing style. Vernor Vinge and Larry Niven are so-so: well written, but too plot driven with shallow characters. (My personal likes/dislikes only, you understand.) Love Heinlein. Won't go on now, but had to say it. If anyone is still reading this comment, you get a gold star or something.
Lyle Caldwell
145. Tower_of_Ganja
@138 R.Fife

I think this is because if Therava had been at Rhuidean, she would have accepted Rand as HWCWTD and Sevanna would have immediately lost power within the Shaido. And as Jordan needed a story, that obviously could not have happened. Eagles to Mordor all over again.

So many of the plot points in this series hinge on unshared or unreliable information, from Rand and Perrin and Matt keeping secrets from each other to Sevanna playing the Shaido WOs, etc. Even when info is finally shared, the players have painted themselves into corners they cannot come out from. Therava is not that different from Elaida, or Nyneave, for that matter. Nyneave could easily be a "bad guy" in the series if she had been given the wrong set of information from the start (which she kind of did at first anyway).
Rebecca Starr
146. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Wetlandernew @140
I'm not so sold on the Halima compelled Egwene theory myself. Particularly since Egwene's 180 comes just after Siuan's assertion that the oaths are what make them Aes Sedai. It gives them their neutrality and credibility. Egwene was actually parroting Siuan's views when she said that.

Tower_of_Ganja @145
Agreed. Even at Malden, Therava's focus was not so much on supplanting Rand as proving that Couladin was given approval to go to Rhuidean. Meaning she meant to prove that Couladin and the Shaido were unjustly treated in being refused to enter the city. And yes, Therava and Elaida do act a lot like Nynaeve did before leaving Two Rivers(do as I say and get out of my way or you'll be friends with the switch).
Chiara Elvira
147. elvyelvy
So Wetlander, do I get my my golden star?
Rebecca Starr
148. bookworm
I'd like to agree with the Halima was not compelling Egwene faction.

He was keeping her under his thumb (at Moridin's direction) in order to play both sides of the Aes Sedai split. He just enjoyed giving her pain, I'd imagine. Petty.
Rebecca Starr
149. sps49
@126 birgit-

My belief is that Far Madding works like the Centaur Aisle. If you could move the widget to a stedding, it would undo the stedding-ness.

Females reading SF might be time related. When I read first Tolkein, it was freshman year of high school, 1978. And I think there was only one female for years after who had read any fantasy, let alone hard SF. Nowadays it is definitely different; my normal goddaughter (as in, not dorky at all) has read Rowling and Meyer- just like many other high schoolers. Times have definitely changed.

I'm off to the Star Trek rewatch, hope to see y'all later!
Rebecca Starr
150. gigi
Well, I have never been an ooh ooh girl, so I do not understand why The Hat is soooooo significant! Please expalin????
Lannis .
151. Lannis
Wetlander @ 144: Woo-hoo! Gold star! First claim, too! ::holds out back of left hand::

re: Egwene's 180 view-turn (see what I did there?)...

IIRC, Leigh (or another commenter) mentioned Egwene's ability to immerse herself in whatever culture she's in. Won't go back to find the exact quote, but whomever said it did so during around tEoTW and the mini-Tinker vacation that Egwene and Perrin enjoyed... (I think...)

My point is, I don't think Egwene just adopts the culture (Wise One's clothes in TAR?), but also the views of whatever culture she's currently enjoying... hence the Siuan mini-me in Salidar. That said, I think she's also learning everywhere she goes, and that has a big impact on her character. She finds more info, then changes her opinon--though I do agree that a complete 180 is a little much. My overall (and superficial) opinion of the main characters would be that Egwene does the most intellectual growth, whereas the others do more personal/internal growth.

Egwene's got that burn to learn...

EDIT: Dammit--elvyelvy beat me to the punch!
Lannis .
152. Lannis
gigi @ 150: re: Teh Hat... I'm going to say, IMO, that Mat's hat is so important because it's one of the definitive items he carries, along with the foxhead medallion and the spear (do you see someone in costume as Rand without the Dragons? Probably not. Perrin without the axe? No. Mat sans hat? Maybe... yeah, no).

Not only does it change Mat's appearance, but it's obtained immediately after Rhuidean, and marks a change in Mat's demeanor. There's Mat-sans-Hat, when he's the joking/immature, still-into-adventure farmboy, then Mat-à la-Hat, when he's more world-wise/cynical/mature, muttering (almost constantly) "I'm no bloody hero" but still jumping into the fray out of an unspoken duty.

That's my take on it... anyone else? Feel free to pick it apart. :)
Alice Arneson
153. Wetlandernw
147. elvyelvy
151. Lannis
Gold stars coming up! :)

151. Lannis
Yes, I see what you did there - although I have to admit I might not have caught it if you hadn't pointed it out. I'd make a good WoT character - I see what I expect to see and too often don't catch the little twist that makes it so different than what I think I saw.

Agree on your Egwene analysis. She takes on the WHOLE culture when she takes anything, and learns learns learns. Even from her mistakes, sometimes! ;) I have to read KoD again (only got through CoT in my latest reread, so have only read it once). During her time in the Tower, does she begin to objectively synthesize the different cultures? It seems like her time with the SAS got her pretty well into the AS culture; her capture seems like a good time to think about the values and strengths of the things she's learned. I'm thinking her upcoming changes to Tower society will (or should) be based on combining the best of the various cultures to the benefit of all.
Shawn Spearman
154. fishes153
gigi@150 I was wondering about the hat too. Thanks for bringing that up.

Lanis @151 I have been reading like mad to get caught up and that discussion in the early threads about Egwene popped into my head too. She is so chamelion-like in her personality. I kind of like that about her.
I think she acts so spoiled early on because she was probably a spoiled "rich" girl in her village. Her change after being with the Aiel is such cool character development IMO.
Lannis .
155. Lannis
Wetlander @ 153: Sa-weet! I'm a sticker hound! :)
Rebecca Starr
156. Lsana
@151 Lannis,

I agree 100% on your analysis of how Egwene adopts the views of the cultures she's in, but I don't see that as a good thing. To me, it makes her come off as flighty. She has so few strong opinions, so few principles that aren't just grabbed from whatever people happen to be at hand. If she were in high school, she would be one of those who mindlessly follows the in-crowd without ever stopping to think about whether what they are doing might be wrong.

Egwene really needs to come up with some values of her own, whether by synthesizing the values of the cultures she's been with or by choosing one and going with it. One way or the other, though, she needs something that will stand against someone else's argument. She seemed to kind of start that process in KoD, but I think she still has a ways to go.
Rebecca Starr
157. jlfitz
re: Egwen's 180 on the oath road.

It's not really a full 180, she want's AS to take the oaths, but she also want's to undo them when they retire, so they are more like the kin (and Windfinders/Wise Ones.)
Shawn Spearman
158. fishes153
I agree with the adaptation, but not sure about her not being able to make a decision herself. I think she started out that way when she was travelling to TV, but since travelling with the Aiel, she has made decisions on her own. They weren’t always good decisions, but they were totally hers. Even the decision to accept her toh was her decision.
Once she got to Salidar, she used that chameleon-like persona to her advantage. She hid out and let the SAS think she was amenable to their every wish, and then when the time was ripe for her plans, she acted. I don’t see her as flighty at all. She’s becoming as sneaky as Verin. Don’t get me wrong, she makes her share of mistakes, but I definitely think she has Verin-potential.
Alice Arneson
159. Wetlandernw
149. sps49

At the risk of giving away my age, by 1978 I'd been reading Tolkein for nearly 10 years and Lewis for 7 or 8. That said, I didn't really know anyone else (male or female) who was reading scififan until about 1975 or 6 when my best buddy took an English class in it. (Yup, a Science Fiction and Fantasy class in high school in the 70s. Pretty progressive in small-town Montana!) I think she got hooked into a lot more authors then, and introduced me to most of them as well. Never looked back...

(Correction - my much-older sister was the one who had introduced me to Narnia, but I don't know that she was much into fantasy as a genre. More into C.S.Lewis & the rest of the Inklings.)
Alice Arneson
160. Wetlandernw
158. fishes153
I don’t see her as flighty at all. She’s becoming as sneaky as Verin. Don’t get me wrong, she makes her share of mistakes, but I definitely think she has Verin-potential.

You said it! Totally agree.
Galen Brinn
161. GatheringStorm
jlfitz has a point.

However, her plan on allowing Aes Sedai to remove the oaths and "retire" to The Kin I think will be more problematic than Egwene realizes: The social hierarchies are totally different. I don't see too many AS retiring to the kin and having to suck up to someone who never made it all the way to full AS. There will be full-on culture clash/wars as people who used to be "leaders" now find themselves having to bend to someone who is much weaker, etc.

It comes across as well-intentioned, but poorly thought out. Which is they way the Road to Hell goes...
Deborah Jones
162. NanaD
re Egwewe
Being a young woman from a small sheltered village, maybe she felt the need to immerse herself into what ever culture she was in at the time with the hopes of talking the good from all and discarding the bad in order to make herself into a person better able to fulfil her destiny.

Her mentors were good examples of leadership. Nynaeve was the wisdom of her village, Moraine was the first Aes Sedai that she met. The wise Ones were certanily someone to emulate. And Siuan was the best example of an Amyrlin in recent history.

As for the Oath Rods, perhaps she had witnessed first hand how bad the Aes Sedai were bound by the oaths and just couldn't image them running around without them.
Rebecca Starr
163. Smatt
I agree with jlfitz take on Egwenes attitude to the Oath Rod.

At present the AS need the Oath Rod because Randland only accept them because of the 3 Oaths. Remember, at one point even after the breaking they did not swear the 3 Oaths and it used to be only 2.

Until they can prove themselves to truly be Servants of All (and not servants to what they think regardless of what anyone else thinks)they will be restricted.

If they are going to keep the Oaths they should add a 4th one: I will not be a darkfriend. Bye bye BA.
Rebecca Starr
164. hoping to be of the blood
I'll admit to loving Eg, more so since her WO days.
She is so not an 'ooh, ooh' girl, whose main purpose in life is to show how smart she is.

She is a smart, driven, ambitious, strong-willed girl, not even a woman, when we first meet her. She is thrown into a world of death and violence, slavery, and being pursued by the BA, in large part to help her boy hood friend who, btw, has to save the world. I think she's feeling a little pressure and is not taking liberties for her own benefit. Even Amys agrees when Eg says that time is a luxury and her purse is empty. Very serious minded and focused is our girl.

I make a motion to remove her from the ENEMA epithet.
Galen Brinn
165. GatheringStorm
Smatt @ 163,

If they are going to keep the Oaths they should add a 4th one: I will not be a darkfriend. Bye bye BA.

We already know that the BA removes at least the Oath against lying, so that means they have an Oath Rod of their own. It wouldn't take much to remove a 2nd oath. Maybe I'm not seeing the whole picture, but I would think they've got an instant workaround.
Rebecca Starr
166. Lsana
@165 GatheringStorm,

But if they are bound not to be a Darkfriend, could they even form the desire to join the BA? It would seem that the BA would have to undo that oath to even know who to recruit...
Sydo Zandstra
167. Fiddler
Egwene and the Oath Rod.

Somebody mentioned Siuan being some kind of a role model, after Egwene is instated as Amyrlin. I always thought the 180 degrees switch happened after Siuan told Egwene that the first thing she wants to do when back in the White Tower is to reswear the Three Oaths because that is what makes an Aes Sedai.

Tony Zbaraschuk@41:
I suppose she (Lanfear) and Asmodean could have done massive mega-Compulsion on the whole caravan ("forget about this hole in the air you're driving through"), but that seems out of style for either of them.

Not necessarily. I could see Lanfear do it. But strong-willed characters can overcome the effects of compulsion. Rahvin had trouble keeping Morgase in line, Nynaeve overcame Moghedien's Compulsion and I think Kadere could have been a problem here as well. And it was a big group of peddlers too...

It's just that there were great risks involved in this case,from Lanfear's POV.

Have we seen any peddlers yet who are not dark friends?
(The only only one I can think of who might not be sank into the ground with a ghost village during a bubble of evil.)

Have you ever seen a traveling salesman who isn't a DF? ;)

About the Sun Throne:

So Rand is not aware yet about Galad being his half brother. However, I'd like to see what happens if he finds out about it. Because by the same standards Rand claims the Sun Throne for Elayne, Galad has a better claim. I guess the same goes for Gawyn, but he's more tied to Andor. This doesn't go for Galad though...
Shawn Spearman
168. fishes153
164 @ hoping….

I agree with you and am very nearly president of the Eggie fan club, but if we remove her from the ENEMA label we would be left with AMEN. This doesn’t quite capture negative feelings I get when I read about them the same as ENEMA. We may have to leave it as is.
Galen Brinn
169. GatheringStorm
I agree with you and am very nearly president of the Eggie fan club, but if we remove her from the ENEMA label we would be left with AMEN. This doesn’t quite capture negative feelings I get when I read about them the same as ENEMA. We may have to leave it as is.

Of course, you could always change it to MEAN. lol. But true, in general terms ENEMA seems to fit better.
Galen Brinn
170. GatheringStorm
Lsana @ 166,

Maybe I'm not remembering correctly, but I seem to recall that the BA guides novices to them, the same way that the other Ajahs do: While the Novice/Accepted "pick" their Ajah, the Ajahs have been guiding behind the scenes so that the right person goes to the right Ajah.

They would just approach the new sister and say hey, swear on this that "I release all oaths" and then reswear them with the ones that the BA wants them to say.
Rebecca Starr
171. Smatt
@170 GatheringStorm

If the new AS was releasing the oaths for the specific reason of becoming BA then the oath would preclude her from doing it. The 4th oath could be changed to:

I am not a darkfriend and I will not be a darkfriend.

Problem solved.
Rebecca Starr
172. Oberndorf
I seem to recall reading that Compulsion (or at least its lesser variants) work better if the commands/thoughts are logical or can be justified by the victim's normal thought processes. Hence Compelling someone to believe that pigs fly would be difficult, but convincing a man to marry a woman he finds attractive wouldn't be.

Ergo,I suspect Egwene's 180 on the Three Oaths is a combination of factors. Egwene can see both the upside of the Oaths (their status as a sine qua non of Aes Sedai status, and a unifying factor within the Tower) and the downside (isolating them from society, shortening their lifespan). So when Halima wants to have her shift her opinion on the Oaths for the Shadow's own reasons, it's not nearly as hard as it would ordinarily be to convince a strong-willed character like Egwene to change her mind.
Rebecca Starr
173. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
GatheringStorm @170
Some of them were already darkfriends before coming into the Tower. Some were guided in and sworn as Black shortly after gaining the shawl.

Fiddler @167
On the contrary, Lanfear has expressed a distaste for the use of compulsion. More likely that the entire caravan was composed of darkfriends. In fact, I think Rand's POV in FoH states them to be all darkfriends.
And Rand knows who his mother is, and everybody knows who Tigraine's other son is. He probably just hasn't thought it relevant.
Sydo Zandstra
174. Fiddler

Wasn't that based on Compulsion Graendal-style and/or Compulsion used on LTT?
Rebecca Starr
175. sps49
I think this is touched on in the WOTFAQ (all hail), but the BA would have to be very good at scouting prospects- any response like "what, you all are darkfriends?!" would have to result in the death of a novice/ Accepted/ AS.

But then, how does a prospect seek out the BA? Is it done the way certain ladies on some Navy vessels ID'd like minded new lady crew with the greeting "So, do you play softball?" Those who knew would know, and it probably went over the head of those who didn't/ weren't/ whatever.
Rebecca Starr
176. gigi
Thanks,lanis 152 for the explanation. And thank goodness I am not the only un-ooh ooh girl that reads these deliciously wonderful books!!!!!
Rebecca Starr
177. Smatt
Darkfriends can recognise each other through hand signals. For example Kadere new Lanfear was a high up darkfriend from the signals she gave him.
Sydo Zandstra
178. Fiddler

And Rand knows who his mother is, and everybody knows who Tigraine's other son is. He probably just hasn't thought it relevant.

I can see why. But if Galad would make a claim, Rand would have to grant it. I mean, if you hang an Aiel friend (Mangin) in order to prove you stick to the rules, you can't back out in favour of your girlfriend...

Yay! More plots!
179. Freelancer
@156 Lsana,

I take the opposite position from yours.

- When Egwene and Perrin spent time with the Traveling Folk, she had respect and admiration for the courage they showed by holding to a set of convictions that puts them at a continual disadvantage to anyone who has no honor.

- Egwene is the one who was held as a damane by the Seanchan. She learned much from that experience, and it will matter greatly when she holds Moghedien captive in Salidar, as well as giving her an anchored viewpoint about any kind of slavery or bound captivity.

- She accepted the role of apprentice to the Wise Ones, and immersed herself in ji'e'toh to the best of her ability, but not until she recognized a deeply valuable morality within it. Remember her first interactions with ji'e'toh were repulsive to her.

- She quickly became Siuan's star pupil as the child Amyrlin, because there's nobody better to help her learn than the previous Mother whose only loyalty is to seeing that Aes Sedai survive as well as possible, and do what's right. Siuan has no faction, no agenda of intrigue. Yes, she's playing the rest of the sisters, but her only goal is a whole Tower without Elaida in the Seat.

So, flighty is not in it, for me. She has a discernment beyond her years, and takes from experiences those things which are valuable, and leaves the rest behind. She is anything but indecisive. Her problems usually stem from making decisions before she knows enough for wisdom to be part of the process. And even this trait is an evidence of courage and fortitude. She is always willing to "do what she wishes, and pay for it". I just can't get too down on someone who always accepts the cost of their actions.

On the other hand, there's a ton of love for Nynaeve around here, and she's still my least favorite SuperGirl. The reasoning is the same as with my respect for Egwene. Nynaeve doesn't admit errors unless the moon is purple, she hammers other folks for momentarily displaying any of several foolish traits she presents continually, and she tries to get out of the consequences of her mistakes, or blames others. I'm very glad Egwene didn't learn more from her before they left the Two Rivers.
180. Freelancer
RE: Galad's claim to the throne of Cairhien,

I've often believed it would end up that way. Galad is the best known living Damodred, and has earned a reputation for acting honorably to a fault, which could separate him from his family's blackened legacy.

My suspicions about Galad becoming King of Cairhien actually got boosted when he joined the Whitecloaks. That may not make any sense at first, but it has always intrigued me to look for a connection between the two, since the symbol for both is a shining sunburst with wavy rays. Wouldn't that be an easter egg?

Anyway, if Galad ever decided to "throw his hat in the ring" for the Sun Throne, I'm sure Rand would allow it. Besides, there hasn't been talk about Elayne doing so in quite awhile, and with her just finalizing her claim to Andor, and her pregnancy as it stands, I don't see it happening real soon.
Lannis .
181. Lannis
gigi @ 176: S'no prob. And no, I wasn't an Ooh Ooh Girl, either... too shy. Usually knew the answer, but wouldn't speak up. :)
Maggie M
182. Eswana
@ several, esp. freelancer @ 180:

I love the idea of Galad as the next King of Cairhien. This is even more plausible given that he's probably going to marry Berelain, who has done a kick ass job running the goverment there, is liked and trusted by the nobles (and the Aiel there), and they would be an amazing power couple.
Rebecca Starr
183. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Fiddler @174
Lanfear's plan involved enslaving Rand with sex. She did not want to provoke LTT with the power unless a) she was ready to take him on, or b) she was just plain pissed enough not to care. She made clear that she did not want to compel Rand and wanted him to come to her of his own free will. Besides, the major members of the caravan are already proven darkfriends(Kadere and Isendre), what difference would a few more to round out the driving team make?
184. Freelancer
@182 Eswana

Exactly! Imagine Galad showing up with wife-to-be Lady First Berelain on his arm, whom everyone applauded for her fair and effective handling of Cairhien in the Lord Dragon's name. Add the strength of his blood claim and his reputation (although he'll have to work hard to get people to believe he's a new flavor of Whitecloak Lord Captain Commander), and it's a walk.

Of course, the last we heard from Galad regarding his opinion of the Dragon Reborn, he was telling Elayne to stay as far from him as possible (Elayne and Nynaeve on their way to Salidar). I suppose after first contact with Berelain, Perrin, Faile, Morgase, Basel, and Balwer (a not unimportant Whitecloak connection as Niall's secretary) he could be convinced that Rand is a Good Guy(TM).
Chiara Elvira
185. elvyelvy
Lannis@151 sorry, sheer luck – we can share as post-sisters. Be steadfast, the right avatar will come to you! *ahem*trying to be serious and focused.

Freelancer@179 makes several excellent points, as well as others, but the development of Wot characters -who develops and who doesn't, and why and how- is a rather bulky matter. I'd need a way to keep track of and organize loads of info (thanks Smatt, your help will be most appreciated) in order not to loose details and facts.

Galad and berelain as the Brangelina of Randland? And the Sun Throne under their ooh-ooh pretty bottoms? Hmm, quite possible, very very possible.

Subwoofer@129 thanks for the compliment (*blushes*) – I will hold you to that and the first round is mine.
Sam Mickel
186. Samadai
@168 @169
we could make it N'EMA then it works out the same.

I realize that Galad could claim the throne in his own right, but we are forgetting the man Rand has in charge in Carhien. Lord Dobraine is the kind of guy who would make the best king. Loyal to his country and people with the trust of Rand and others.

I am of the opinion that the majority of the Whitecloaks that follow Galad will not survive past TG.
Anybody have any idea what will happen when Perrin meets up with them and Bornhold and Byar have their flip out session
Rebecca Starr
187. bookworm
Somebody please give me one "because it's the right thing" reason why Galad would consider becoming King in Cairhien.

Unless Galad were convinced that such a move was "the right thing to do", he would never consider it. Besides, the Damodreds are really in bad odor right now rounds there anyway.

Putting Galad in charge there would be tantamount to throwing him to the fangfish. The nobility would eat him for dinner.

Next, I don't think Halima Compelled Egwene. Maybe I missed that part in the books somewhere? Without some evidence, it isn't likely considering what I do remember about Arangar's discussion of it.

And, at 250 years old, I'd imagine that most Aes Sedai to have become somewhat more laid back and ready to cultivate roses. The only thing that drew Cadsuane back was the rise of the False Dragons (not that she knew that at the time). I can't really see retired Aes Sedai continuing to meddle in power politics, if they ever did when they were younger (not all did).
Lyle Caldwell
188. Tower_of_Ganja
Egwene has been through two crucibles, and is going through a third, which have burned away most of her bad decisions and, well, youth. First the apprenticeship with the Wise Ones, then the political shark tank of the Salidar AS, and now as the captive of the Tower.

Of the characters in WOT, only Rand has been similarly tempered and changed*, though his changes have not all been for the best. But his process is not complete yet either (Cadsuane/Soreila ).

The Rand/Egwene reunion will be interesting to read.

* perhaps Moraine in Finnland is undergoing something equivalent.
189. Freelancer

Since we're "supposing" that Berelain will be falling for Galad, we could suppose that she will provide his "It's the right thing" motivation. There is no king, the last king was a Damodred, he's the closest living relative, and the nation needs a king. He doesn't want to be the Lord Captain Commander of the Children (at least he keeps referring to it as a bad joke last we saw), but after he learns that:

1. Morgase is alive and well, and (sort of) on the Dragon Reborn's side
2. Elayne is alive and well and on the throne of Andor
3. The Dragon Reborn is not evil, and is trying to put the best people possible in charge of each of the nation's within his power

He might see it as the right thing, even if he doesn't see it as a desirable thing. Agreed, Dobraine is one of the few Cairhienin nobles that give Rand the honor and respect due him, and has been a profitable regent. But he is a soldier, not royalty. Galad is both.

@188 ToG,

You should include Egwene's time as damane in Falme as a crucible, yes?
Rebecca Starr
190. bookworm
Sorry Freelancer, too tenuous. There must be a specific argument, otherwise it fails the Galad "test" (for me).

And, I see more to Berelain than her having some insane notion about becoming Queen in Cairhien. Give the poor character more credit than that.

Finally, there isn't any credence to an argument that Cairhien will even survive Tarmon Gai'don as a political entity. I'm thinking some things will change in Randland no matter who wins Tarmon Gai'don.
Rebecca Starr
191. hoping to be of the blood
I think you may be right about Moiraine learning some valuable lessons in humility in finnland, but I think that started after her return from the rings of Rhuidean. After seeing the many life possiblities and how her decisions affected them, she realized that she was not all powerful and she could not control events. She had to submit to the way things were and how the pattern determined them to be. Very humbling for her but her behavior has already changed. For example, she shares her eavedropping technique with the WOs. I can't see her doing that before the rings. Upcoming in this book is more of moraine accepting a diminished role and actually becomes more effective and useful to Rand.
Sam Mickel
192. Samadai

When Rand and the Aiel save Cairhien and Rand goes into the city and into the throne room. all of the lords line up by rank and Dobraine is third in line of the Caihenin nobles after Colovaere and Maringil
Rebecca Starr
193. Smatt
@187 Bookworm

Cadsuane new that the Dragon had been reborn during the time of New Spring. I think she mentions this in COT.

She probably came out of retirement to remove the False Dragons and she was extremely bored. For me it is quite clear that she maintained a loyal cadre of AS ready to aide her when the true Dragon makes himself known. These AS where obviously not aware of her plans.
Rebecca Starr
194. Smatt
Galad will follow Rand because he always does the right thing regardless of the consequences to himself.

1. TG is comming and the Dragon Reborn must be there to fight the DO.

2. Although Rand is becoming harder he has instigated fairer laws. Galad is not stupid and will see this. He was also raised by Morgase who is probably one of the most just and law abiding monarchs in Randland.

3. Rand is his brother. I am sure this is going to become public knowledge.

4. The only power strong enough to withstand and defeat the Seanchan is Rand.

5. Morgase is alive and with Perrin. They are in very close proximity to each other and will probably cross paths. Morgase will be albe to inform him that this Dragon not the monster rumours make hin out to be form her experience with one of his closest supporters.

I also think that Galad will get Cairhien with or without the hot Lady First. Though he will not be looking for it. Elayne will have enough on her plate being AS and Queen of Andor.

I do hope that Elayne will realise (when she grows up) that he is not as bad as she makes him out to be and give up the claim in his favour. This persistent misrepresentation of Galad is one of her worst traits.
craig thrift
195. gagecreedlives

She may of enjoyed giving her pain I think the main reason for the headaches was so that she could then also cure them with her massages and thus gain easy access to Egwene. Cause the problem and the come up with the solution to gain trust as a tactic is an oldie but a goodie.

Freelancer @184

I don’t think he thinks of Rand as a bad guy in and of itself but is showing concern for the girls as he is aware that how dangerous hanging around could be. Not the least being Galad has the common held belief that Rand will re-break the world.

Samadai @186

No idea what that reunion is gonna be like but I bet it will be awesome and maybe just a little awkward.
John Massey
196. subwoofer
GAHHH! R.Fife@142- felt your pain today. Computer went up in smoke. Replaced the hard-drive. No go. Replaced the power supply. Nothing. Replaced the mother-board- then saw that the power supply I just got did not have enough pins to plug into the new mother-board... climbed up a bell tower and hurled bags of flaming dog sh!* at passing motorists.

Lanis@133- Doesn't have to be perfect I was going to post the Jim Beam label... but it may of type cast me as a full on alcoholic instead of a binge drinker.

Lasagna@135- I always thought that Couladin needed beats. Love how Bair dummy slapped him back into his place:
"Do you wish to be a Wise One Couladin?"... "Put on a dress and come to me, and I will see if you can be trained. Until then, be silent when Wise Ones speak!"

Shaido apparently skirt the bounds of Ji'e'toh. A reference does not instantly spring to mind but I do recall seeing it mentioned repeatedly the concept of "...even for a Shaido" and Shaido dog has more honor and other things. I get the impression that the Shaido are the gheto clan of the Aiel. All the dregs of Aiel society wind up there.
John Massey
197. subwoofer
@JamesEdJones, if you saw me at 81, you would realize that I am a dirtbag and it would really lower the quality of these posts for me to go there... but I am know to have lapses of weakness. And I cannot remember what I had for breakfast(see previous posts) you expect me to remember specific details from back in the day?

Freelancer@179- Gotta love Ny's character flaws. Can't see as to how that is different from every( You can throw sticks and stones, just no rotting food) other woman I have dated in my sordid past. *ducks the first Civic*

elvyelvy- be careful for what you ask....
Rebecca Starr
198. toddywatts
@161 Gathering Storm

One of the changes necessary in the Aes Sedai society will be the recognition that strength in the power doesn't necessarily equal knowledge/wisdom. How many ooh-ooh girls does it take to come to that realization?

I think it only makes sense to hold up the example of the Wise Ones as a guide. I can't remember her name, but she's really influential and so weak in the power that she has to bend over to pick up a rock.

I wonder how they decided on the title of "Wise Ones?" It hardly seems appropriate when applied to the likes of Therava and Sevanna (isn't Sevanna a self-appointed Wise One, though). The whole Shaido tribe seems a little far-fetched to me, now that I'm thinking more about it. There's got to be a Congar or a Coplin behind them.

And, though it shames me to admit it, I was an ooh-ooh girl trapped in a boy's body.
craig thrift
199. gagecreedlives
I believe your thinking of Sorilea there toddywatts.

And she confuses the hell out of any aes sedai thats trying to establish how the Wise One's establish their pecking order.

Any thoughts on whether in a terribly ironic twist of fate that the shaido could be the remnant of a remnant.
Rebecca Starr
200. toddywatts
Oh, and if Galad had been interested in ruling Cairhien, hasn't he had like months to come forward? He was in Tar Valon when what's-his-head was assassinated, wasn't he? I'm sure the news would have reached them.
Rebecca Starr
201. toddywatts
@199 gage
Sorilea, thank you! I love her, even if I can't remember her name.

I refuse to think of the Shaido that way. I may go so far as to suggest that you need to have your mouth washed out.

Oh, I know it's probably wrong to think that they all deserve to die just based on the actions of their leaders, but I'm a petty kind of guy.
craig thrift
202. gagecreedlives
No worries mate and if it makes you feel better I think that the shaido are about to join the extinction list. I personally think it will be more likely that the aiel that have joined the tinkers will become the remnant but I am really curious to others peoples thoughts on the matter.
Amar Ramraj
203. aiel1219
@156 Lsana
As a person who has had to live in many many different cultures, I can empathise with Egwene. Also, I don't think that she simply changes to suit the culture, she seems to keep what she sees as best about a particular culture and combines it with others to make quite an intersting character.

Personally I have what some may call that dry sarcastic humour (associated with a certain Island in Europe), believe strongly in Liberty and Justice for All (Merc) and am also very very passionate in what I believe and may tend to go overboard quite often (my country of origin).

LOL!!! Even my accent is such a combonation that most ppl have toask where r u from??? Which I usually amile at and answer nowhere.

sorry if this is repeating what sum1 else posted

EDIT: B4 any1 bites my head off, about the qualities I listed for myself, and place they came from: I'm not saying that those are the only places with those qualities or that they are the premier things abt those places, I'm just saying that those are some of the things that stuck with me from different places just to show how a person could adopt parts of different cultures into their personalities and still be a strong and moral (well usually I am) person.
Chris Hall
204. bookwormchris
About the whole 7 days thing (besides 7 being a special number for some people) it is possible, although I'm not sure how probable, that part of their little time jump was a result of sitting under the magical tree of life.

For the whole 180 camp with one of my favorite characters. I don't think it was Compulsion in this case, for reasons previously elucidated by others.

Egwene is one of my favorites because she shows real development over the books. Constructive development, at any rate. Rand changes a ton, but I don't like his whole "must be hard enough to repel everything" regimen. Flexibility is key, Rand. Ask Perrin the blacksmith about that some day. Sure, Egwene can be childish at times, but remember that she is very young. She goes through a ton in the few years we see her and by KOD I am loving her. The whole embrace the pain thing is fun, especially since all the AS around are wondering at her grace under the strap. (As a turning point, at least one of them, for Egwene, I see the episode where she admits she lied to the Wise Ones and others and accepts her punishment as a big one.)

Perhaps I am now rambling. I know there was more, but I will leave this as it is. Except to mention that I am very excited about Mat in the next bits. (Also love the Battle for Two Rivers.)
Shawn Spearman
205. fishes153
198 @ toddywatts….

…so weak in the power that she has to bend over to pick up a rock.

LOL! I had to back up and read that shit again! Too funny!
Rebecca Starr
206. Randalator
Freelancer @189

There is no king, the last king was a Damodred...

The last King of Cairhien was a Riatin (Galldrian Riatin), not a Damodred. House Damodred lost the crown to House Riatin after Laman's Sin.

They still have a valid claim but Caraline Damodred as High Seat of House Damodred would be a stronger contender than Galad or Elayne(though she has accepted Elayne's claim).

If we go by "last rule, first claim" the logical choice would be Ailil Riatin, sister to the late High Seat Toram Riatin.
Rebecca Starr
207. sps49
@177 Smatt-

No, I mean before a DF learns any handsignals, before joining the Dark Side. A mistake in initial recruiting in the WT would result in a missing AesSedai, and that would be noticed somewhere.
Rebecca Starr
208. birgit
This didn't bother me on earlier re-reads, but it does here: why don't they do something about Couladin?

There are a lot more Shaido, so it wouldn't be a good idea to attack them (and the Peace of Rhuidean forbids it).

Shaido apparently skirt the bounds of Ji'e'toh. A reference does not instantly spring to mind but I do recall seeing it mentioned repeatedly the concept of "...even for a Shaido" and Shaido dog has more honor and other things. I get the impression that the Shaido are the gheto clan of the Aiel. All the dregs of Aiel society wind up there.

That's the opinion of a clan that is a traditional enemy of the Shaido. An allied clan might think differently. Couladin and Sevanna don't act honorably, but that doesn't mean all Shaido are like that.
Chiara Elvira
209. elvyelvy
Double thumbs up for Lannis's icon!!!

Subwoofer, Nyn might say that you think with the hair of your chest, like most men (which in fact tends to be true - Ok ok, I'm joking well almost).
And for the record, I'm a fully grown up girl, in age at least, so don't you worry.

We should start organizing this PostCom, that would be a thing to remember.

Randalator@206, if i remember correctly, the Riatin girl will marry... hmm can't remember his name after some chase, have a happy marriage though not a long one.

As for the Shaido, many non-shaido who joined them are starting to go back to the Waste (or at least thinking to) and Therava is taking the remnants of the clan back to rebuild it.
Rebecca Starr
210. tonka
@ 207.sps49 Would they notice. Maybe but they may think she is somewhere in the world or that hse has died while outside of the Tower.Even 20 years ago (in New Spring) most thought Cadsuane death untill she show up in Canluum (and in the White Tower during the Aiel siege)

@ 198.toddywatts
Sevanna is roofmistress of Comarda Hold. She is not a WO.
Chiara Elvira
211. elvyelvy
tonka@210 I already commented about how AS seem not to have a coherent organization. No record is kept of the comings and goings, of deaths and so on. So a death would be noticed if the body were found, or her warder felt her death, otherwise she might be considered as off on her own for her personal reasons. Now that I think of it, a simple checking on what AS are drawing the "salary" would be enough to have a clear idea of their number.
Plus the Amyrlin authority seems strong and at the same time random. Verin herself warns Perrin that there are many schemes inside the WT, implying they are not bad in nature but possibly conflicting. And she should know, as she started some project of hers many decades before - again sneaky sparrowy clever Verin.
So I assume that Egwene cherishes the idea of a more centralized organization.

Before I forget, let me post this to be retrieved when we get to chapter 54 and later to AS's age issue: Moghedien says that
I had lived over two hundred years when the Bore was opened, and I was still young, for an AS

So the 400 years of the Seanchan damane -Alivia?- are not an impossible notion.
Rebecca Starr
212. bookworm
@194 Smatt.

When it comes to Cairhien, your five points don't have any relevance concerning the possibility of the installation of a new King (or Queen).

See @206 Randalator, who kindly took the time to research the Cairhien situation.

Like the Damodreds, House Riatin likely wouldn't be getting a return engagement at the top either, though.

It seems to me that when the group was in Cairhien, there was some explanation of how dynastic succession "worked" there. Something like Andor, where the major noble Houses vie for support amongst the minor nobility, until some kind of plurality or majority is reached.
213. Freelancer
Ahh, Randalator, you are correct sir.

Drat, Thom, you have to stop doing that. You can't just go around rubbing out monarchs (or male spouses of monarchs) every time the current love of your life has a spot of bother. Well, Ailil does have a valid claim, indeed. But didn't she defer to Elayne's claim in Rand's presence?

Aside from speculation about Galad and the Sun Throne, how's about this twist?

1. Rand brings the Seanchan into his service for the Last Battle
2. Galad and his 7000 children meet Perrin's group, learn Morgase lives, and are convinced to support the Dragon in the Last Battle
3. Seanchan and Whitecloak armies end up side by side marching to Tar'mon Gai'don

The last time we saw a POV from Galad, he had told his men that they would have to fight alongside Aes Sedai in the Last Battle, so they agreed they could work with channelers against the Seanchan. How ironic when they end up as allies?
Rebecca Starr
214. Randalator
elvyelvy @209

if i remember correctly, the Riatin girl will marry... hmm can't remember his name after some chase, have a happy marriage though not a long one.

You're thinking of Caraline Damodred and designated husband High Lord Darlin Sisnera, steward of Gondor Tear.

Though their marriage is not necessarily destined to be short. Min's viewing said that Darlin will die in bed and Caraline will survive him. I think that implies that Darlin will die of old age (although it doesn't exclude the possibility of dying in bed rather young due to poisoning). But from the context I tend towards the "long chase, long marriage"-option...

As for the Shaido, many non-shaido who joined them are starting to go back to the Waste (or at least thinking to) and Therava is taking the remnants of the clan back to rebuild it.

Which makes the Shaido one possible candidate for the "remnant of a remnant" that will survive after the Dawnster (a.k.a. Rand al'Thor) is through with them. Another candidates would be the Tuatha'an. Consider the irony...
Chiara Elvira
215. elvyelvy
My my, Randalator, you have a computer memory (maybe a plug behind your neck like Matrix?) and I blush for the gaps I show.
Yes, that's the man, and I can't pinpoint why, but the phrasing of it gave me that impression (crappy impression, ok).

That the Shaido would make the remnant of a remnant, well, that would be not only ironic, but mocking as well. Yet RJ seems to have been an ironic (in the best meaning) man, able to see and appreciate how history can be mocking.
Rebecca Starr
216. bookworm
@214 Randalator.

One up, one down. ;)

The Shaido are destined to fade away just like those who failed to follow the Jenn Aiel into Rhuidean so long ago. Not soon enough to help Galina (I hope), but soon enough all the same. Those who can't/won't change die.

The sad thing (for me) is that Galina may yet have a part to play. The DO isn't strong enough to throw away so many adherents (I know, I know, the weak have no place at the DO's side). Worse (for Therava), Galina might gain the upper hand again.

Not likely anyway, given the size constraints of the last three books, but an amusing thought to entertain.
John Massey
217. subwoofer
From the what I remember(and yes, my memory is like Mat's pre-Rhuidean) Galina has been broken. She realizes that she will be Therava's "little Lina" for all time. I believe that is her comeuppance for smacking around Rand.

Can't remember (no surprise there) what it was, but the Shaido always rubbed me the wrong way. Maybe it was the way Couladin was a serious pain in the butt on the slopes of Rhuidean. His temper, his disbelief at Rand being the Dragon, the crap he pulls at Alcair Dal- and then the stuff outside of Cairhien. When they started taking Wetlander Gai'shan, a thing unheard of in Ji'e'toh, it pretty much sealed the deal for me.

Yes, Sevanna is a douche bag, more concerned with power and image- how she looks- than the well being of her clan.

Lannis, nice rose. Embracing Saidar I see.
Blake Engholm
219. UncrownedKing
First, Aeil1219 what happened to the icon? BOOO on you for changing and not telling us.

2nd, somewhere around 191 or so:

There is most certainly a coming of Gandalf th... I mean Moraine the White and a "I come to you at the turning of the tide" moment coming up here. I hope and pray its in book 12. Should be bad ass.

@200 I think Galad didn't make a clame for Cairhien because he was so into the "GO Whitecloaks! Go Light" phase.

@206 or so About the 7 days in Rhuidy:

I think as soon as they entered the city, with all its foggy magicalness, time acted differently. Once Mat and Rand went in, they were on Rhudiean time, which I believe to be slower compared to Randland time. But the dynamic duo never notices any difference due to the fact they are in Rhuidean.

I think I have begun rambling so I'm done.
Hip-hip-hooray for Wednesday
Rebecca Starr
220. Randalator
elvyelvy @215

My my, Randalator, you have a computer memory (maybe a plug behind your neck like Matrix?) and I blush for the gaps I show.

Well a couple of things are bound to stick when you've read the books so often that you've actually lost count. I'm in my 10th re-read right now...I think..could be the 11th.

But that's not the whole truth. I tend to extensively research, cross-reference and double-check before I comment using the combined forces of Encyclopedia WoT and html-versions of the books that allow quick searches for keywords. I'd be a lot less accurate quite often if I had to comment just based on memory or had to sift through my paperbacks for specific quotes.

So "computer memory" is quite accurate.
Lannis .
221. Lannis
elvyelvy @ 209: Why thank you! ::curtsies::

subwoofer @ 217: Wasn't going for the saidar link, but completely baffled why I didn't think of it...?!
Kurt Lorey
222. Shimrod
Apologies are due.

I began lurking here without creating an account (because I was so excited to be able to talk WoT with some other people). So, I've been happily posting away when someone starts asking posters to quit fooling around and create an avatar (which meant I had to break down and create an account).

So, to my embarrassment, I find that my chosen handle had already been claimed by some other (extremely smart and classy) person. Oops!

So, apologies to the original "bookworm" for attempting to hijack your (extremely cool and original) handle!!

Readers/blogmeister can now be amused (or not) by my further comments under my "new" nick, and should henceforth not hold the original "bookworm' responsible for any comments made previously by me.

And yes, I totally ripped off Lannis for my own avatar. Thanks, Lannis! (who is surely a wonderfully clever Aes Sedai).
Richard Fife
223. R.Fife
Actually, I'm in the school that I think the Shaido are the remenant of the remenant. Shaido may no longer be under the contract of Rhuidean, but I think that the 3000 yr old threat still holds. They will persevere and be annoying, and the rest of the Aiel will either die or return to being daishan. *is a doomsayer of the cool*
Rebecca Starr
224. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
birgit @208
Nobody else stands up for the Shaido. Even the Shaarad and the Goshien who had bloodfeud both agree the Shaido are honorless dogs. And it's shared by all clan chiefs during one of Rand's conferences.

bookworm @212
I suppose it's a lot like Andor, only bloodier. Much bloodier.
Deborah Jones
225. NanaD
Perhaps after the Last Battle the Aiel will just be the Aiel. No clan divisions but united under The Dragon Reborn.
mark Proctor
226. mark-p
I was thinking the remnant of the remnant might be the gai'shain. The last cultural remnant from when Aiel were pacifists.
Either them or the Tuatha'an and the Aiel who have given up the spear. I didn't even think the Shaido might count.
Thats the trouble with prophesies you can't really tell what they mean until afterwards.

I really have to stop posting and reading for the next 6 weeks or I will fail my exams, you all better do the same or I will keep coming back to see what I have missed.
Shawn Spearman
227. fishes153
220 @ Randalator

How did you get HTML versions of the books? I would LOVE that. Are they available somewhere?
John Massey
228. subwoofer
Um... yay for Wednesday.... can't grumble grumble tell techs anything grumble some more. The Shaido might still be around just because of proximity sake. They are on the "nice" side of the Dragonwall.

As for all the Aiel being Aiel, I think it is Aiel either joining Rand's Maidens or the guys with the red head bands or giving up to bleakness and going into the Blight to die.

'K everyone, we are all waiting to pounce on Leigh's post... um... Hi Leigh waves hand.
Rebecca Starr
229. BlacksmithButNotEmo
Getting here late; you guys have done a wonderful job of squeezing the juice on these.

Just a small addition to bookworm@148 and gagecreed@195 on Halima and Egwene's headaches: Creating the problem and offering the solution to gain access is exactly right, but there was one additional benefit: by keeping Egwene in pain, it lessens her effectiveness (ability to reason and deduct) and makes her more predictable and manageable. Impressive that Egwene manages to keep her plans on track and juggle the SAS in the face of the low level assault.

tower@187 and uncrowned@219: love the Moiraine the White bit. You *know* she's coming back from Finlandia (that was for you, Subwoofer) with answers, an otherworldly air, and possibly some goodies (a la the foxhead medallion).

Okay, let's do part 13...
Kurt Lorey
230. Shimrod
@229. Great point about lessening Egwene's effectiveness.
Rebecca Starr
231. Rebecca Starr
"Actually, I'm in the school that I think the Shaido are the remenant of the remenant."

Light! I certainly hope not!! They barely deserve the name Aiel anymore
Shawn Spearman
232. fishes153
How pathetic am I? I keep hitting refresh to see if anyone has posted…or, you know….hi, Leigh!

Anyway, since things are slow I thought this would be the perfect time to derail the discussion that only a few of us are reading anyway.

I know that much has been said about how RJ has borrowed from LOTR, the Bible, and mythology. But I have been struck, ever since my first read, at just how close he got to Guy Gavriel Kay’s Fionavar Tapestry when he wrote about Mat’s hanging on the Summer Tree Avendasora. He even includes the ravens of thought and memory, which IIRC, were also in Kay’s rendering. Has anyone else noticed this?
Richard Fife
233. R.Fife
Fishes: look up some of the Odin myths from Norse mythology ;) I think you will find they both stole from that. Odin hung himself by his spear from Yggdrasil, the tree of life, to gain knowledge, and he had two pet ravens, thought and memory.
Shawn Spearman
234. fishes153
Ah, that explains it. I remember much of Greek and Roman mythology, but never got into any Norse mythology (Though I did read a couple of Thor comic books when I was a kid).
Thank you for that.

By the way, what does ret-con mean? I usually try to figure out all the abbreviations on my own, but that one has remained a mystery to me.
Sam Mickel
235. Samadai
Here I am sitting around waiting for the new post, bored out of my mind *twitch*. I was looking at my profile and updating it still couldn't find an icon I like. Then I started looking at all my postings and on part 10 I posted 26 times, which is equal to about 3.125% of all postings there. Sorry I helped break it. Now that i am really bored and numbers are something that I like I am going to look and see what all of your %'s are so we can assign proportionate blame (yeah I am looking at you).

I realize I am a freak no need to point.
Of course Iam kidding about the blame thing but still interested in the #'s
Rebecca Starr
236. nickeyw
I might be wrong as I haven't read the last few books in a while but isn't Halima staying near Egwene and giving her headaches to effect her dreams. Halima knows the importance of Egwenes dreams and doesn't want her to know/suspect certain things. I am sure somewhere Halima is interupted or something and that night Egwene has Dreamer dreams again.
Rebecca Starr
237. Hummingbird
@101/ Hoping to Be

I think it is like the difference between intending to be naked to go skinny dipping and someone spotting you naked as you come out of the shower.

In one you are in control of the nakedness and in the other it is surprised on you.

Sweat tents and stripped down by the Wise Ones are a different experience then having someone walk in on you unexpected.

OF COURSE.... it doesnt help that she "hates him" I mean she really really "hates him", or so she says.
Galen Brinn
238. GatheringStorm

Retcon is short for retroactive continutity. It's defined as "the deliberate changing of previously established facts in a work of serial fiction".
Josh Davis
239. YoSoyElJosh
In regards to something we were discussing earlier: I'd always thought that the remnant of a remnant might go further back. We've already seen the Aiel split twice; the first split left us with the Tuatha'an and the Aiel, the second gave us the Aiel and the Jenn Aiel.

But, to complicate things, the prophecy refers to those who call themselves Aiel, but I can't find when that prophecy was written. I doubt their could be avoided simply by a name change, though.

Judging by the various Aiel prophecies, the surviving Aiel will once again serve the Aes Sedai, but to what effect isn't certain to me.

Quotes for those who want them:

"When the Trollocs come out of the Blight again, we will leave the Three-fold Land and take back our places of old."

"The stone that never falls will fall to announce his coming. Of the blood, but not raised by the blood, he will come from Rhuidean at dawn, and tie you together with bonds you cannot break. He will take you back, and he will destroy you."

I notice there's not a lot in the prophecies about going back to the Waste. I'm sure it's been commented on before, but that's probably not a great sign for the Shaido.
Shawn Spearman
240. fishes153
238 @ GatheringStorm


Guess there's a reason I couldn't figure it out myself. I never would have gotten that.
Shawn Spearman
241. fishes153
239 @YoSoyElJosh

Could Take them back mean take them back in time by telling them the true history of the Aiel? Rand did that by revealing what none of the Chiefs or WO would reveal. He took them back in time and, in effect, broke them. Just a thought.
Galen Brinn
242. GatheringStorm
That's always been my interpretation of "take them back", fishes.

However, given The Creator's penchant for writing something that's totally obscure to most of us but allegedly "intuitively obvious to the most casual observer", there's no telling...
Josh Davis
243. YoSoyElJosh
Well, just as an additional note, from the Eye of the World glossary:

" is prophesied that a child born of a Maiden will unite the clans and return to the Aiel to the greatness they knew during the Age of Legends"

Though I do say, his telling them the true history seems a likely "Take them back," but feels to me incomplete. However, my feelings are hardly a great citation.
Chiara Elvira
244. elvyelvy
@various about mithology: the Tree of Life is associated with miths of the Great Mother and later development of Her aspects into different goddesses, and knowledge is in it too. Throw in also the tree linking this world with the one above and that below, its being a marker of the natural cycles of birth/death/rebirth and you have a picture of how big a part myths play on WoT and how RJ elaborated them.
Rebecca Starr
246. Qtip6
I am new to this idea of Jordan fans discussing these epics fo fantasy on-line.
Well, I envy those of you who can ignore chapter icons when you read. But then, I read EotW four times (in 1992) before I had a chance with any other book, consequently, I was mining the text for any further clues on what would happen next for quite some time. Sadly, I had never visited WoT FAQ until after catching this re-read (which is excellent, Leigh)For me, I was always a bit of a Luddite and avoided such noisome things as computers and newsgroups. What wonderful theories and discussions I was missing. Too bad that the Dark One is stuck in a stable in Tar Valon. :( But, regarding icons, looking for the secret, often hidden wolves or gleemen in the coming chapter, I would feel a strange unsettled feeling until RJ finally revealed the reason for the icon.
Rebecca Starr
247. Ilhandar
Alot of posts, I wonder if anyone will even get down this far!

About Leigh's comments on Egwene the know-it-all:

I have always found Egwene to be the most annoying of the supergirls. I think it has to do with her attitude that she knows better than the "wool-headed" idiot Rand. She never stops to think that maybe as the Dragon maybe he knows a bit more than she does about what he has to do. She just ends up being another in the lost list of people who think it is their right to control him. It seems to be a theme with Jordan, as he alludes to Lews Therin having the same trouble at the end of the AOL in the "World of the Wheel of Time". The reason Lews Therin and the hundred companions make their solo strike into Shayol Ghul is because the women under the influence of Latra Posae refuse to help, thinking they know better than him how to deal with the situation. In my mind Egwene seems to parallel Latra Posae in many ways. Going with the theme of everyone being reborn, I always had a uneasy idea that Egwene is Latra Posae reborn. Any thoughts on that?
Richard Fife
248. R.Fife
Hmm, possible, but I think it is more just coincidence, and also remember, Latra Posae and LTT were on equal footing, so to speak. They knew what eachother's points were, and the flaws in their own plans, and it was more of a fundemental disagreement of intellectuals that degenerated into a 2nd grade name-calling match, as opposed to standard duopotamian/randlandish affairs that seem to start in the 2nd grade and work their way down.

And yes, we read down, deep, deep in the dark.
Shawn Spearman
249. fishes153
243 @ @YoSoyElJosh

" is prophesied that a child born of a Maiden will unite the clans and return to the Aiel to the greatness they knew during the Age of Legends"

I think we discussed this a bit when we talked about who sees what in Ruidean, but it seems that the role of the Aiel during the AOL was a bit glossed over. I seem to recall some people being upset that Aiel were being treated like slaves or such.

I was still lurking back then and still trying like mad to catch up. Anyway, if you read that part again, you will see that even the high class/high born people treated Aiel with huge respect. I don’t have my books, but there is one part where they bump into Charn, I think it is, and then when they see how his hair is cut, they almost grovel an apology.

My point is that the greatness they knew in the Age of Legends was not the greatness they know now. In fact, I doubt that a Ruarc or even a Gaul would be able to take on that mantle of humility. The greatness of the Aiel during the AOL was the respect they were accorded by being The Servants to the Servants of All.

I think the remnant will be the ones who have fallen to the bleakness (siswai aman???). They have thrown down their swords and now have nothing left to them except death or a new way of life (or a not-so-new way of life). The rest of our wonderful Aiel friends are likely cannon fodder for TG.
Rebecca Starr
250. jotto
I have not read all comments posted so I'm not sure if this has been brought up or not.

This is some what in regards to the "Shaiel = Tigraine" comment Leigh made on chapter 34.

I wonder if the reunion, of Rand and Galad, will be as rehumanizing to Rand as I think it will be? Knowing you have a brother and actully facing him as a brother are two very different things. I hope Jordan held off the reunion so long for a reason. It will be very disappointed if this fact doesn't get a decent resolution by the ending.

In retrospect doesn't this realization make the scene where Rand falls into the garden in tEotW more dramatic. I mean his only living relative besides Luc (and possibly Sulin, I'm not sure if she means blood brother when she cries 'the Aes Sedai have stolen/taken my first brother' in LoC) ,is standing only a few feet from him. When I realized that it was one of those "wow" moments.

Oh, I could be totally off course here but, I think Galad and Berelain hook up. I think he is 'the man in white' that Berelain falls for. Min Mentioned it at some point I can't recall.
251. PhantomIce
@52 Siuanfan

I always thought that the Rand's love affair with the 3 women would serve a higher purpose pre TG in that it was meant to counterbalance how much crazier LTT became after he lost (killed) Ilyena.

Meaning that desipte RJ's hatred for killing off main characters I actually thought one of the 3 girls (personal preferance: Elayne b/c a) hate her b) similarity of name with Ilyena c) andor throne safe since she's pregnant so useful if she dies during childbirth) would die before TG as the price Rand had to pay for his destiny but recalling what happened to LTT when he lost his girl, the pattern wove backup loves for Rand to make sure he remains (vaguely) sane and tied to the pattern after his wife dies.
Rebecca Starr
252. Ryamano
Looking at it, it would be interesting to see Aviendha's POV in these chapters. She's actually a woman fighting fate. She saw that she's destined to love Rand, but she doesn't accept it. "Who says that a prophecy must be true? I decide my own fate!" That's the atitude of the modern man. And Aviendha does that, just as Min does. But in the end she resigns and concedes defeat. Aviendha's a very interesting character that's underappreciated. And the cultural clash she provides is so funny! Except when she's with Elayne.
Rebecca Starr
253. ryamano
On the Aiel who'll survive, from book 11 on I always thought it'd be the Shaido. I mean, they'll return to the Waste while the rest of the world will be fighting Tarmon Gai'don. Their death rate will probably be less than the ones who're fighting with Rand. And this'll be very tragic, which is one thing I think RJ wanted from these books: the sense that not everything is good once the end comes.
Rebecca Starr
254. Divil The Bother
A few points on the comments and chapters

I notice in the comments that Egwene comes in for some praise for her "Do what you must and pay the price" philosophy. I'd have to disagree. I find it totally in keeping with her general childishness that she thinks it's ok to do anything so long as you take the punishment.

So let's see... Go out and commit any crime and then confess all to the cops, do your time and everything's ok? Well not for the sods you've committed the crime against! As usual Egwene forgets that others are affected by her actions aswell.

On Egwene adopting the cultures she encounters...
In my view that's coming from a deep down belief that her own culture is inferior to everything she is exposed to on her travels. She is incapable of evaluating objectively these new cultures and is blinded to any negative aspects by what she percieves as the good parts. So Aes Sedai are the best thing since sliced bread. No Wise Ones are the best thing ever. No..etc. We all see it in our kids when they come home talking like or copying the behavious of the cool kids in school. That's about Egwene's level.

Oh and I forgot to mention one problem I have with these chapters. Egwene, Nynaeve and Elayne are on a top priority mission to weed out the Black Ajah in wherever - nothing could be more important than this right? Wrong! I want to learn about Dreaming so I'll abandon my two mates to trek for months into the Aiel Waste (she doesn't know Rand will use the portal stones). By the time I learn anything useful my two friends will have been more than likely killed by the Black Ajah but I'll be a real Dreamer "sigh".

Going on a bit I know but I'm not a big fan of T'A'R and most of how it features in the plots seems very klunky to me.

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