May 6 2009 5:25pm

The Wheel of Time Re-read: The Shadow Rising, Part 15

Hello, everyone, and welcome back to your briefly interrupted Wheel of Time Re-read!

My little birthday vacay was lovely, involving purple flowers, Cowboy Be-Bop music, filet mignon (OMGSOGOOD), and of course martinis. Oh, and kicking some random guy’s ass at darts, that was awesome. Two double bullseyes in a row, sucka!

And that was after the martinis. Phear my drunken dive bar game skillz, yo! It’s good to know I have something to fall back on.

Ahem! Anyway. Thank you all for the lovely birthday wishes, and for not breaking the site while I was gone, it is muy apprecianado. (Yes, I know I have just committed a crime against Spanish. As is only appropriate on Seis de Mayo!)

Today we are covering Chapters 42-44 of The Shadow Rising, whoo! Previous entries are neatly Indexed here, and as always please beware of rampant spoilers for the entire series in all of these posts.

Let’s get to it!

Chapter 42: A Missing Leaf

What Happens
Perrin is in the wolf dream, standing among the empty Tinker wagons with no wound or pain. He puts his hand on his axe, but the hammer is there instead.

He frowned; once he would have chosen that way, had even thought he had, but surely no more. The axe. He had chosen the axe. Hammerhead suddenly became half-moon blade and thick spike, flickered back to stout cylinder of cold steel, fluttered between. Finally it stopped, as his axe, and he exhaled slowly. That had never happened before.

He thinks Slayer is out there somewhere, and is suddenly also armed with bow and arrow. He begins zigzagging across the Two Rivers, checking to see how far word has spread, thinking about how Faile is a queen’s cousin, and yet loved him, and that women were strange, yet wonderful. Then he sees a flock of ravens flying toward the mountains, and follows, to where the Manetheren Waygate sits. All seems normal, and Perrin is about to leave when he realizes that there is only one Avendesora leaf on the gate, instead of two the way Loial had left it, and in the next moment the Waygate is open. He examines the gate, and notes that he cannot pass through the reflective surface here. The gate begins swinging shut, and he jumps out of the way; he’s sure it means more Trollocs and Fades are entering the Two Rivers right at that moment in the real world. Suddenly Perrin senses he is being watched, and leaps aside just barely in time to avoid an arrow through his heart. He dashes away out of the valley in one step, and jumps back to a vantage point above the valley, searching for Slayer. He finds him lying in wait for Perrin to recross his path.

This was the first time Perrin had gotten a good look at him; a hundred paces was little distance for his eyes. This Slayer’s high collared coat had a Borderland cut, and his face looked enough like Lan’s to be the Warder’s brother’s.

But Perrin knows Lan has no living kin, and though this man wears his hair the same as Lan, he rejects the idea that he is Malkieri, because Lan is the only one left. Perrin prepares to shoot him from behind, feeling no remorse for doing so, but Slayer somehow senses him and streaks away. Perrin curses and follows, and as he stands in the Westwood trying to detect Slayer’s scent, Slayer begins talking to him from concealment, telling him it was a “neat trick”, locking the Waygate, and if he knew how many Shadowspawn had died there trying to get out, he would be thrilled, but now the gate is open.

“It was only a few hundred to begin, Goldeneyes. Just enough to keep those fool Whitecloaks off balance and see that the renegade died.” Slayer’s voice became angry. “The Shadow consume me if that man does not have more luck than the White Tower.” Abruptly he chuckled. “But you, Goldeneyes. Your presence was a surprise. There are those who want your head on a pike. Your precious Two Rivers will be harrowed from end to end, now, to root you out. What do you say to that, Goldeneyes?”

Perrin wonders why the man is talking so much, drawing him right to him, and then realizes it’s probably an ambush. He grins, deciding not to play Slayer’s game, and steps out of the wolf dream, intending to wake up. Instead he finds himself in a regular dream with Faile nuzzling him. He wakes up the next morning painfully, to find Faile and Ihvon in the wagon with him. Faile tells him to lie still after all the thrashing he did in his sleep, but Perrin tries to get up, telling them he has to get to the Waygate. Faile tells him under no circumstances is he running off to the mountains with an arrow in him; he’s going to Emond’s Field. He argues at first, but knows she is right and gives in with ill grace. Ihvon murmurs that there will be more Trollocs then, and leaves. Perrin is wild to get going, but Faile feeds him breakfast and grooms him, ignoring his protests.

By the time she got around to brushing his hair and combing his beard, he had settled on dignified silence.

“You are pretty when you sulk,” she said. And pinched his nose!

Ila comes in and she and Faile help him dress; Perrin compliments Ila on the stitching job on his coat, and she tells him Faile did it. Faile flushes, and Perrin remembers her claim that she would never sew for him, and merely thanks her solemnly; she blushes even more. They help him outside, and the Two Rivers boys tell him all about the Tinker women dancing. Perrin says he’s seen it, and Faile tells him the tiganza is one thing, but one day she will dance the sa’sara for him, and “show you what a dance really is”. Ila gasps in recognition of the name, and Faile blushes redder than ever. Perrin decides he really really wants to see that. Perrin tries again to convince Raen to come to Emond’s Field, and Raen is again surprised that he considers listening, but again refuses.

“The Way of the Leaf is not only to do no violence,” Ila said gently, “but to accept what comes. The leaf falls in its proper time, uncomplaining. The Light will keep us safe for our time.”

The Tinkers give extended goodbyes to the Two Rivers party, except Aram, who is standing off to the side sullenly, and Perrin notices that somehow Faile is keeping any of the Tinker women below a certain age from giving him kisses. Raen and Perrin exchange the ritual farewell, and Perrin wonders if they will ever find the song, and hopes they will at least find safety. After they are a mile north of the Tinker camp, the Aiel reappear. Gaul joins Perrin and asks after his wound; Perrin lies that it is fine, and asks if Gaul spent a pleasant night playing Maiden’s Kiss. Gaul stumbles and almost falls on his face, and Perrin asks what’s wrong. Gaul asks who he heard suggest that game, and Perrin replies that it was Chiad.

“Chiad,” Gaul muttered. “The woman is Goshien. Goshien! I should take her back to Hot Springs as gai’shain.” The words sounded angry, but not his odd tone. “Chiad.”

“Will you tell me what is the matter?”

“A Myrddraal has less cunning than a woman,” Gaul said in a flat voice, “and a Trolloc fights with more honor.” After a moment he added, in a fierce undertone, “And a goat has more sense.” Quickening his pace, he ran forward to join the two Maidens. He did not speak to them, as far as Perrin could make out, only slowed to walk alongside.

Perrin asks Ihvon if he knows what that was all about, but the Warder doesn’t. Then he teases Faile about the sa’sara dance; she snaps at him that men have thrown their hearts and fortunes at the feet of women who have danced it, and he replies that there is no need for her to dance it then; his heart is already hers. Faile stumbles, and then laughs that he is too clever for her, and she will dance it for him one day and boil the blood in his veins. Perrin is in increasing agony, though, and soon cannot distract himself from it. They continue on to Emond’s Field, the men singing songs, but their first view of the village is a shock to all of them; all of the greenery has been cut back, and the village is surrounded by stakes and sentries. Ihvon points out the catapults, six so far, and Faile says proudly that Perrin’s people are almost as tough as Saldaeans. The crowd parts as they enter, murmuring “Perrin Goldeneyes”, and he wishes they wouldn’t; then he sees a flagpole on the Green, flying a red-bordered white flag with a red wolf’s head on it. Verin approaches and remarks that Alanna told the villagers that Trollocs fear wolves, and doesn’t he think it makes a good symbol? Faile observes that Morgase might have a problem with it, and Perrin says that’s just lines on a map; he didn’t even know they were part of Andor until he went to Caemlyn. Faile replies dryly that rulers have a tendency to believe maps. Perrin says to Verin that he thought she and Alanna were hiding, and she says after all the stir he caused they could hardly continue in hiding. She examines his wound and says it is bad, and needs Alanna. He asks again why she is really here, and she ignores the question and grabs a young girl, telling her to go find Daise Congar to tend to the wounded men in Perrin’s party.

The men with him were as stunned by what they found here as he was. Ban scratched his head at the banner, and a few just stared around in amazement. Most looked at Verin, though, wide-eyed and uneasy; they had surely heard the whispers of “Aes Sedai.” Perrin was not escaping those looks entirely himself, he realized, talking to an Aes Sedai as though she were just any village woman.

Verin tells him Alanna will take care of him, and Perrin wishes it didn’t sound like that might have more than one meaning.

The axe/hammer thing is interesting, in that in most symbolic choices in fantasy it’s pretty clear which is the “right” choice and which is not. I think this one is a lot more ambiguous, though; it’s clear (especially by KOD) that ultimately Perrin needs to choose the hammer, but it doesn’t feel to me necessarily that Jordan intends to imply that he is doing the wrong thing by choosing the axe in the short term. Though again I have to bring up the point that the choice is made a little less significant by the fact that a hammer to the face offends just about as much as an axe to same, and conversely an axe is just as useful in construction as a hammer is (I’d like to see someone try to hew lumber with a hammer, just for example). I still remain unsure whether the ambiguity of the axe/hammer-destruction/construction dichotomy is deliberate or not.

More clues to Slayer, whatever. This was definitely a lot more interesting when I didn’t have a clue what was up with him.

Re: the sa’sara, I note that one way in which authors of written media are allowed to cop out that creators of visual/audio media are not is that it’s really easy to write that a dance is so darn sexy that your blood will boil when you don’t have to actually produce the dance in question.

I wrote earlier that I wished we had seen some of the Two Rivers stuff from the Aiel’s perspective, but it’s also fun that their whole soap opera is just going on in the background and almost no one else is even aware of it. I also like that even with the sparse amount of concentration we get on him, it’s obvious that Gaul will most likely be just like Rhuarc one day, but is enough younger that things can still rattle him. Like Chiad, for example, who (going by the standard WOT pigtail-pulling formula) Gaul obviously is all about.

Verin and Alanna: so sneaky. “Oh, yeah, wolves scare Trollocs, make a flag!” Another really interesting thing to see would have been a POV from either of them. Ah, well.

Chapter 43: Care for the Living

What Happens
Verin leads Perrin’s horse to the inn, and he hisses at her to get him inside, to escape the voices of those who were looking among his men for their sons and brothers and husbands, and not finding them.

The door cut off the heart-lost wails, and the cries of Dael al’Taron’s mother for someone to tell her where her son was.

In a Trolloc cookpot, Perrin thought as he was lowered into a chair in the common room. In a Trolloc’s belly, where I put him, Mistress al’Taron. Where I put him. Faile had his head in her hands, peering into his face worriedly. Care for the living, he thought. I’ll weep for the dead later. Later.

Faile demands that Verin do something, but Verin tells her Alanna is much better at Healing than she, and they must wait for her. They wait in the common room, which has been turned into an impromptu armory, and Perrin asks if anyone knows where Loial is; Dav Ayellin tells him that he’s out helping clear forest, but that someone went to tell the workers that Perrin is here, and Dav bets they all come to “get a look at you”. Perrin wonders if he’s a gleeman or something, and asks about Luc. Elam Dowtry says he’s off hunting the Horn or something, and says Luc told him he’s rightfully a king of somewhere, maybe Andor. Perrin says absently that Andor has queens, not kings, as he and Faile and the Aiel exchange significant looks, and Verin remarks that he has a way of causing trouble; yesterday he took a delegation out to the Whitecloaks without telling anyone and told them Emond’s Field was closed to them. Verin understates that she doesn’t think it’s a good idea to antagonize Whitecloaks unnecessarily. Perrin frowns, thinking that if Luc was doing all that yesterday maybe he wasn’t behind the Trolloc ambush after all, but he still wants to think he was.

“Wanting won’t make a stone cheese,” he muttered. “But he still smells like cheese to me.”

Dav and the other two looked at each other doubtfully. Perrin supposed he must not seem to be making much sense.

The third man in the room turns out to be Ewin Finnegar, who Perrin is shocked to see has grown a foot and now talks in a deep bass voice. All three of them clamor to hear about his adventures outside the Two Rivers, and Perrin thinks they are idiots, but tells them an edited version of it, which seems to disappoint them. Ewin demands to know why Rand and Mat didn’t come home too, then, if it’s all being hungry and getting rained on. Tam and Abell have entered, so Perrin is careful to tell the same half-truths as before. Then Faile orders the boys to stop pestering Perrin and be on their way, and to Perrin’s surprise they actually bow to her awkwardly before leaving, passing Loial on the way in, who’s carrying a giant axe.

“You are hurt,” he boomed as soon as his eyes fell on Perrin. “They told me you had returned, but they did not say you were hurt, or I would have come faster.”

Perrin is startled by the axe, and notes that Loial does look angry, probably at having to chop down trees. Perrin rubs his face and is surprised to find it dry; he feels very hot. Faile wants to know what’s keeping Alanna, but Verin merely says she will come. Perrin tells Loial about the open Waygate, and Loial says mournfully that it is his fault, because he locked the Waygate but did not destroy it. He explains that he can’t actually destroy it by himself, but if he removes both Avendesora leaves, it will die. He says he will go do it now, but Perrin tells him no, there are Trollocs up there; Perrin will go as soon as Alanna Heals him. Then he asks for a drink of water, and Faile jumps up and feels his forehead and shouts that he is burning up. Alanna enters at that moment and checks Perrin, then instructs the others to lay him out on the table immediately.

“Mistress Luhhan,” he murmured, “Mother says I can come be apprenticed to Master Luhhan.” No. That was a long time ago. That was . . . What was? He could not seem to remember.

He dimly hears Alanna explaining that the arrow is caught on bone, and she will have to realign it before pulling it out; hopefully the shock will not kill him. They all hold him down, and Faile puts a leather-wrapped stick in his mouth, telling him to bite down.

Would she come hunting with him, running across the endless grassy plains after endless herds of deer? Icy cold shivered through him; vaguely he recognized the feel of the One Power. And then there was pain. He heard the stick snap between his teeth before blackness covered everything.

I definitely think in general that Perrin tends toward the emo-martyr end of the spectrum and needs to loosen up, but on the other hand, I fail to see how any non-sociopath could live through the scene at the beginning of this chapter, with everyone crying for their dead kin, without feeling like a giant pile of crap for at least a little while. Ouch.

That scene, plus the one where Perrin tries halfheartedly (and unsuccessfully) to tell Ewin et al how an adventure really goes, are the kind of scenes that make me abruptly remember that Jordan was a war veteran. My father’s father was in the Navy during WWII, and fought in the Pacific, and I have no idea what any of the specifics of his service were because he simply refused to talk about it. Granted, I was a young girl while he was still alive (he died when I was twelve), so it probably wouldn’t have been very appropriate to tell me about it, but I don’t think he talked about it to anyone. Not even my father. I guess after a certain level of intensity of experience, there just isn’t anything left to say unless you are a poet. Or a writer.

Perrin’s mention of Loial’s axe made it occur to me how appropriate it is that Loial is with Perrin and all the symbolism he’s got going on, as opposed to Rand. Later on, in my opinion, Loial becomes a character that Jordan didn’t quite know what to do with
(hence the long off-screen missions he kept getting sent on), but in the Two Rivers sequence he is quite thematically pertinent. And also, adorable.

I’m not sure what the purpose is of Perrin’s doubts about Luc here, because it seems like a little late in the game to be trying to introduce uncertainty about his role as a Bad Bad Man. Maybe it’s hindsight talking, but I’d say that ship has pretty much sailed, n’est-ce pas? Though I did find it amusing that apparently both the Luc half and the Isam half are bitter about their “lost” royal status. Maybe that’s supposed to be the motivation for Luc’s Darkfriendliness?

Other than that there’s not a lot to say about this chapter, which is mostly vamping while Perrin goes from “badly injured” to “about to bite the dust”, so we’ll move on.

Chapter 44: The Breaking Storm

What Happens
Perrin wakes in one of the inn’s bedrooms, weak but Healed. Faile tells him Alanna said he must rest for at least two days, but he senses that she is not telling him something, and finally drags out of her that Loial and Gaul are gone. Perrin realizes they’re going after the Waygate, and gets out of bed, ignoring Faile’s commands to stay put. She tries to physically pull him back into the bedroom as he walks out, and they end up falling down the stairs together, landing in a heap at the bottom. He anxiously asks if Faile is all right, and she grabs his collar, and tells him he cannot do everything himself, and even if he were strong enough to go after them, he must not. Marin comes out and finds them on top of each other at the base of the staircase, and can’t decide whether to be appalled or amused. Faile jumps up , embarrassed, and complains to Marin that Perrin is stubborn and won’t listen to her. Marin tells her in an undertone (though Perrin hears every word) that she is going about it wrong.

“He was an easy little boy to manage most of the time, if you handled him properly, but when you tried to push him, he was as muley as any in the Two Rivers. Men don’t really change that much, only grow taller. If you go telling him what he must and musn’t do, he will surely lay his ears back and dig his heels in.”

She offers to demonstrate, and turns back to Perrin and offers him pie if he’ll go back to bed. Perrin gets up and asks her to have Hu or Tad saddle Stepper. Marin and Faile both take his arms as a cry of “Trollocs!” goes up outside, and Marin tries to tell him that it’s none of his concern. Perrin keeps on, and suddenly Faile sighs and tells Marin to do as he asked. Marin goes, reluctantly, and Perrin asks Faile why she changed her mind.

Tucking his shirt in for him, she muttered under her breath. Doubtless he was not supposed to hear well enough to understand. “I musn’t say must, must I? When he is too stubborn to see straight, I must lead him with honey and smiles, must I?” She shot him a glare that surely had no honey in it, then abruptly changed to a smile so sweet he very nearly backed away. “My dear heart,” she almost cooed, pulling his coat straight, “whatever is happening out there, I do hope you will stay in your saddle, and as far from Trollocs as you can. You really are not up to facing a Trolloc just yet, are you? Maybe tomorrow. Please remember you are a general, a leader, and every bit as much a symbol to your people as that banner out there. If you are up where people can see you, it will lift everyone’s heart. And it is much easier to see what needs doing and give orders if you aren’t in the fighting yourself.” Picking his belt off the floor, she buckled it around his waist, settling the axe carefully on his hip. She also batted her eyes at him! “Please say you will do that. Please?”

Perrin reluctantly admits to himself that she is right that he wouldn’t last very long against Trollocs, and tells her he can’t refuse her anything when she smiles so prettily. She answers that he’d better, or she will do to him what he did to her the first day in the Ways; he chuckles and says it sounds like he’d better let them kill him, which Faile does not find very funny. They go outside to find Jon Thane and another man Perrin does not know being Healed by Alanna, surrounded by a crowd of what looks like everyone in the village. Tomas tells Perrin that the forest-clearing party was attacked by a lone Trolloc. Then Bain and Chiad emerge from the forest and tell Faile that there are some five hundred Trollocs a mile or so away. Perrin asks why Verin and Alanna, who are fussing around the catapults, haven’t cleared these people off the streets then, and Ihvon replies that they do not seem to want to listen to outsiders, and suggests Perrin try. Perrin is sure they could have done it if they really wanted to, but goes over to Bran and Tam and Abell and tells them Trollocs are on the way. Bran says they knew it had to happen sooner or later, and shouts to the crowd that Perrin says Trollocs are coming and to get to their places. The crowd begins breaking up, with many of the men saluting Perrin in a way that makes him very uncomfortable. He mutters to Faile that he wishes he knew what the Aes Sedai were doing, and Faile replies that she thinks they mean him to be a leader, and adds that she thinks he was born to do so. Perrin snorts, thinking he was born to be a blacksmith. The villagers form up in ranks with Tam directing them. Perrin is surprised when Dannil and Ban and the rest who had ridden with him come up and form an honor guard around him, and disgusted to see that they are carrying a smaller version of the wolf’s head banner. He looks at the village’s defenses, and debates trying to send Faile back, but thinks better of it.

“Trollocs!” half a dozen voices shouted, and bestial, blackmailed shapes flooded out of the Westwood, howling as they ran across the stumpy ground, waving scythe-curved swords and spiked axes, spears and tridents. Three Myrddraal rode behind them on black horses, darting back and forth as though driving the Trolloc charge before them. Their dead black cloaks hung motionless no matter how their mounts dashed or whirled. The horn sounded continuously in sharp, urging cries.

A few men shoot immediately, and Tam curses at them to hold till he gives the word. He asks Perrin, “Three hundred paces?”, and Perrin wonders why Tam is asking him, but nods. The Trollocs charge, and at three hundred paces Tam gives the order to shoot. Arrows fly, and so do the catapults, and Perrin jumps when the stones explode on contact, ripping swaths of Trollocs into shreds. They continue the bombardment until all the Trollocs are down, and after a moment of shock the villagers begin shouting in victory. Bran comes over to shake Perrin’s hand and tells him he has led them to a great victory, ignoring Perrin’s protest that all he did was sit there.

The Two Rivers folk raised a thunderous cheer, for him. “Perrin Goldeneyes! Huzzah! Huzzah! Huzzah!”

Perrin mutters to Faile that the Fades had to know that this sally wouldn’t work; why didn’t all the Trollocs come? Tomas joins them and says it was a test, and points out the raven spy flying away from the village; he says they will attack again, now that they have a better idea of the village’s defenses. Perrin worries that there could be ten thousand Trollocs out there, but Verin joins them as well and disagrees, opining that they can only be moving the Shadowspawn through the Ways in small parties, for large groups would draw Machin Shin within minutes. She wanders off, and Faile threatens to stuff him in bed if he even thinks of trying for the Westwood; Perrin lies that he wasn’t thinking of it. Then he hears a commotion coming from the south, and hurries off to investigate.

Preview battle, yay! With Shit Blowing Up, even, heh. Everything’s better with explosions!

It was fun to see Tam getting some of his martial spirit on, as well. I’ve always felt that except for this part of TSR we never got to see enough of Tam, or Abell either. I guess it would not be cool to let them horn in too much on their sons’ screen time, but still, I really like them.

I try not to quote too excessively in general (hah), but I had to include Faile’s entire “honeytalk” speech above because I found it hysterical, mostly because I was picturing her looking like she wanted to chew rocks the whole time.

I am carefully passing over the part after that – not the part where she threatens to return in kind what Perrin did to her in the Ways, but the part where Perrin laughs it off. This is to prevent undue mastication of mineral aggregation on my own part. You know that scene in A League of Their Own, where Tom Hanks barely restrains himself from screaming bloody murder at Bitty Schram for missing the cutoff man, and kind of vibrates for a while afterwards? Yeah. I’d really rather not harsh my buzz of liking Perrin ‘n Faile until I absolutely have to.

Oy, I’m a little verklempt. Talk amongst yourselves. I’ll give you a topic: does Verin and Alanna’s (and Faile’s and Tam’s) rather blatant maneuvering of Perrin into a position of authority diminish his achievement of Lordly status, or is it just an indication that even feudal leadership is only successfully achieved by committee? Discuss.

And that’s all the time we have! I love you all, you’re like butter. I’ll see you Friday, it will be so Prince of Tides. Buh-bye!

1. JamesEdJones
Woo Hoo! The reread is back!, maybe I should read it before I post. Sorry, still a little twitchy.
Blake Engholm
2. UncrownedKing
O thank the lord!

Hope the B-day was awesome.
Chiara Elvira
4. elvyelvy
You Martinied yourself and WON? at darts? you truly are awesome!!!
ahem, now i think I'll go and re-read the post.
Welcome back
5. CalaLily
8D Leah! You've saved us from ourselves! Thanks for the post, you've distracted us from RickRolls, shelocs and mass suicide! *hugs*
Richard Fife
6. R.Fife
Butter? I'm curdled and churned milk? bleh. anyway.

Hmm, on the topic of Perrinb being forced to lordly status, it does kind of annoy me because, as Perrin oft points out, he isn't really doing anything. He mostly asks people what they think then tells them to do it. Almost like the duopotamians turned him into a british monarch.

You also get to contrast to his leadership style Faile's. Where Perrin mostly is just "do what sounds smart in your own heads", she actively is manipulating and pulling strings and ruling at least the female half of T2R.

Then you get Rand and Mat. Rand has to fight tooth and nail to make people recognize him as a leader, and Mat, while he "fell" into it, does earn his position. So there is a bit of a tryptch (was that the word for Elaida's painting?) of the three types of leader. The worthy who must fight for it, the worthy who just gets it, and the figurehead? Seems odd, even if you look at it in "Fights for it, just gets it, has it thrust on him".

And I do think that for all that Mat "doesn't want to be a blood lord," he is just fooling himself, as he secretly relishes leading.
7. CalaLily
...and I completely misspelled your name. x.x I'm sorry.
Luke M
8. lmelior
Regarding Perrin's being seemingly forced into a position of leadership, I agree with R Fife @6, it is quite annoying to the reader, though it obviously doesn't diminish his achievement in the eyes of the other characters. Perhaps the Aes Sedai are simply aware of how the whole ta'veren thing works and kind of help that process along.
Dru O'Higgins
9. bellman
I think Perrin is a natural leader. What the Aes Sedai are doing, at least in part, is trying to make him accept it. The AS probably also know that the only way they will survive to leave the Two Rivers is if Perrin is in charge.
10. mike17126376547649723654732
Does the maneuvering of Perrin diminish his attaining Lord status?

HE never attained it, his Taverinness(?) attained it for him

and feudal leadership can be successfully achieved in multiple ways
11. Rebecca Starr
hmmm, the Perrin being pushed to lorldy status has never bothered me, only because I take it as a ta'veren thing, more than a Faile/Verin/Alanna thing. Plus, people need leaders in war time. ::nods head vigorously::

Ch 42
aaargh. doesn't it just kill anyone else that if Perrin and Egwene shared the tidbits they learned in their dreams, they could put the puzzle pieces together a whole lot quicker?

Ch 43
I had the exact same thought as you, Leigh, on Jordan's status as a war vet coming through in this chapter... I forget how much we know about any injuries he may have taken in Vietnam, but he writes of pain, and the delusion that it causes, so well here. (on that note, my boyfriend still thinks the internal battle every time Rand embraces saidin is supposed to describe morphine...)
Deborah Jones
12. NanaD
Maybe it is just the mind-set of this time that the people really want/need a leader. Someone that they can look up to and depend upon. Most of the time, as was stated above, the people just follow good common sense but still feel the need to have someone in authority to validate their choices.
Perrin has been out in the Great Unknown World beyond the Two Rivers so he must have learned something that the village people don't know. Let's make him our Leader!!

Welcome back Leigh. We didn't misbehave too much.
Rikka Cordin
13. Rikka
I definitely feel for Perrin with the whole "Lord" thing being shoved on him, by his 'friends' no less. For all Mat claims to just want a gamble and a girl, he knows what he's doing. Rand is just kind of screwed by destiny/fate/the pattern when it comes to the leading thing but Perrin has no clue what's going on and just kind of looks at people like o_O and keeps himself from hitting them.

also, the word is triptych :P
Maggie M
14. Eswana
Welcome back Leigh! Wow, we sure missed you. But a well-deserved birthday/cinco de mayo break!

I really, really, love Faile & Perrin's dynamic here. Eclipsed only by "The Price of a Departure," coming to a re-read near you on Friday. (Squee!!!)

Perrin didn't come across to me as emo here; after all, he's wounded, sick, tired, and dealing with *lots* of emotional baggage from his family's murder. Add to that the expectations of an entire village and the woman you love-- yeah, I can see where he's a little testy.

I agree Leigh- the Aiel mini-drama is a nice breath of fresh air amidst all the death and destruction. Very subtle, very clever.

does rather blatant maneuvering of Perrin into a position of authority diminish his achievement of Lordly status, or is it just an indication that even feudal leadership is only successfully achieved by committee?

I think the ladies knew that 1) Perrin was capable of great things but didn't believe it of himself, and thus had to be encouraged and 2) since he was a home-grown hero his influence with the people would be oodles more effective than if they tried to pull the "I am Aes Sedai, hear me roar!" card. Remember, when Moiraine sort of tried that back in tEotW, she was booed and hissed at. However, because Alanna and Verin are pulling strings from the background, the people are much more receptive.

Also, I wish we saw more of Tam, as well. Hopefully when he and Rand have their big reunion it will be in the midst of some smackdown and we'll get to see Tam show off his Illinear Companion skills. Sweet.
Agnes Kormendi
15. tapsi
It's great that you had such a wonderful birthday, Leigh!

Re: the axe/hammer-destruction/construction dichotomy - yes, both can be used in construction as well, but a smith is something of a healer and magician in almost all cultures. Even among the Aiel, there are special rules for them, if memory serves well.
Alice Arneson
16. Wetlandernw
Funny, but I think one of the reasons I love Perrin is the great one-liners Jordan gives him. Especially in this section. Crack me up.

"... there is no need for her to dance it then; his heart is already hers"

“Wanting won’t make a stone cheese,” he muttered. “But he still smells like cheese to me.”

" sounds like he’d better let them kill him."

And of course a few chapters back with Loial and Marin twitching at each other. And he's not usually being intentionally funny; half the time its just in his thoughts. Maybe I like it because I can never come up with lines like that when I want them. ;)

Also love Faile's "honey speech" - gritted teeth and all. Major funny.
Alan Perry
17. stepper
Welcome back!
RE: Perrin, I think it was just the trappings that the AS forced on him. Afterall Tam and Abell were following him even prior the rescue at the White Cloak camp, and think of all the stories that had come back of his convincing the folk in the outlier farms to come in, his trolloc raids.
Likely the duopotomians were thinking of him as a leader anyway (even if subconciously), and the Wolfhead Banner just formalized it.
John Pigott
18. AbEnd
No, the maneuvering of Perrin by Verrin and Tam, etc is perfectly normal and shows that the "old hands" respect and recognize Perrin as an up and coming leader and are willing to make him look good and educate him by example as well.

Perrin would not have known when to release the archers, but I bet he knows now for next time.
19. Greyhawk
As I said in a previous post, Tam is a character that I think could have been more prominent in these sequences, but as Leigh notes and I noted there is a limit to how many characters an author can realistically write about. But it seems to me that Verin's, Alanna's and Faile's manuevering is meant to capitalize on Perrin's Tavernness. Nothing about Perrin's experience (except the wolves) equals Tam's in terms of combat and leadership (and probably even in one on one martial skills). So does that diminish Perrin's role--not IMHO. He IS a good leader, just not the only available one and probably not even the most logical or sensible choice to go for. But once he is in place he carries his weight.
20. Don, Iowa
Ahh darts, I play better when I'm smashed myself. Guessin you were playin '01 or cricket.

Anywho... Perrin still in badass stage at the moment with the 'big one' still on it's way, can't wit till friday now.
21. RebelLives
It has always bothered me a little bit how we are told about the Two Rivers being independant and self-sufficient and then all of this happens and they go all Lord-worshipping with Perrin. I understand the need of a leader and it makes sense. The fact that they continue to do it afterwards and build a manor and all just doesn't fit for me.

I always enjoy seeing Tam scenes. It would be cool to have a story about the Aiel war and have Tam as one of several character POVs.
22. Greyhawk
Oh, also, Faile already was bugging me again as I see her maneuvering as self-serving and even a little condecending. As if Perrin's ambitions are not enough for her, she needs to remake him to satisfy her desires for what her husband should be.
Alice Arneson
23. Wetlandernw
On having leadership thrust on Perrin... I must admit to being a bit bemused by it all. It very obviously IS being thrust on him in these scenes, between the AS, Warders, Tam, Abell, and Faile, all making sure others see him as the leader even when he does nothing. For some reason I love it when Tam does that "Three hundred paces?" thing. He's not the guy to be playing sneaky AS games, but he definitely makes everyone see that he's looking to Perrin as their leader. He would definitely not have needed to do that - he could have just taken charge and no one would have thought it odd in the least. But for some reason he feels its necessary that Perrin be seen by all the TR folks as THE LEADER.

I guess the easy answer would be ta'veren, but I don't think thats it. My guess is that he and Abell have already observed leadership qualities in Perrin that he doesn't see in himself. I suspect they also know (from conversation with the AS/Warders?) that he will be important in upcoming events. (Complete side note: do the AS know yet that Rand is the DR? Why does no one tell Tam?) In any case, I think they carefully and deliberately position themselves where they can quietly help & support Perrin, give advice on things he doesn't know yet, etc. Deliberate or not, he learns a lot from them here that he'll need later on. As for the AS and Faile, we know the AS do what they do for their own sneaky reasons, and Faile wants him to be all that because she's in love with him.
24. Greyhawk
Wetlandernw @23. I like your interpretation of Tam's actions. Never saw it that way myself and I still don't see any textual support for it now (I also don't see any text contradicting that read). But it is a lot less frustrating way to read those exchanges.
Rick franz
25. savazar
Verin knows but I dont think Alanna know but she might suspect.
26. Tony Zbaraschuk
One thing I keep thinking about Tam: he must really have not wanted to go back to war. He was Second Captain of the Companions of Illian, which certainly sounds like something a lot higher up than "mere commander of pikemen"; he probably is an accomplished warleader in his own right. We know he earned a heron-mark blade, but the title indicates he earned rank as well.

So why isn't he already organizing resistance against the Trollocs? Why wait for Perrin to arrive, instead of just hunting them on his own? (Possibly he thinks the Whitecloaks would come down on him for some reason, perhaps relating to the Whitecloak War over Altara way back when.)

Yes, I definitely want to see more of him and Abell.
27. boquaz
Without Faile, Tam, Verin et al to educate him, Perrin is an emotional bully. Through his thought process we see that he means well, but that does not equal leadership. Unless you want unhappy followers, you can't snap at people, waste time brooding and generally fail to do the "little things" like Perrin continues to do throughout the series. The one sequence where he's leaving his lordly duties to Faile because he's bored with them (or embarassed, or some stupid reason) always makes me want to throttle him.

Although, would he have learned these lessons if his manipulators let him fall on his face a few times early on?
Alice Arneson
28. Wetlandernw
I know it's been said about 150 times, but I really like Tam and Abell. I SO hope we get more of them in the remaining books. They have such quiet awesomeness.

Tony Zbaraschuk @26
On why Tam wasn't already organizing stuff... The Trollocs weren't there in such force earlier, and he & Abell were pretty much trying to keep from giving the Whitecloaks target practice. Once Perrin showed up and was able to tell them a lot more of the whys and wherefores, they knew it was bigger stuff. Also, while Abell's family was held hostage by the Whitecloaks, they weren't going to do anything stupid. So once Perrin & company rescued the hostages and went off chasing Trollocs, he did start organizing defenses. I don't have quotes in my pocket today, but I think all the changes to the village that they saw at the beginning of today's reread selection were pretty much Tam's doing.

That's what I was wondering. And of course we all know Verin is sneaky personified, so she wouldn't tell Tam unless she felt it was necessary. Alanna would just because she loses control of her tongue a lot, but if she doesn't know that would explain it.
kori lockwood
29. kori
Does anyone think Faile is pushing the whole lord thing on Perrin simply because it will be easier to introduce "lord Perrin" to her parents than Perrin the blacksmith? Just a thought.
Amar Ramraj
30. aiel1219
Welcome back Leigh. N congrats on the darts game (Hope u had a few bucks or mb a few martinis riding on it :)

Concerning Perin and the leadership being forced on him, we also see this happen to Rand when Moiraine(I think it was) had Aglemar make him Ingtar's second. Even the situation with the Dragon banner is somewhat similar. We also had a fair bit of Rand trying to resist the leadership role as well, before he jumped in head first.

With Perin the resistance seems to be a more long term thing and I really don't think that'll go away for a long long time. He seems to think that he can go back to being a blacksmith and doesn't want to face his situation. It does get a bit annoying at times.

But Perin did show that he has the ability to influence people in the scenes where he talks the folks on their farms into going to EF and setting up defenses. This is most likely his Ta'verenness, but even so, it's still a hand quality for a leader to have.

Well I have a few more jumbled thoughts on the subject, mb if no one posts them I'll try to sort em out.
Claire Edwards
31. ClaireBelle
Leigh, this re-read is made of awesome - thanks soo soo much!! Happy Birthday, thanks for coming back before it all got crazy crazy...

I've been lurking intensively for the past few weeks and thought it was about time I joined le fun. IMHO Perrin wasn't really "elected" by Verin, Alanna, Tam et al - he was already leading, you see it in the scene at the Lewin's farm where he persuades the whole family to leave for Emond's Field. He is the most reluctant of the three boys to accept the fate the wheel has picked out for him though...
Chiara Elvira
32. elvyelvy
How true, Leigh, about telling one’s war experiences. My uncle fought in the British Army WWII, campaigning from India across the Middle East, Anzio and all the way up. He was the most respectful, kindest man, yet he literally snapped at me that “Some things are best left unsaid”, when I remarked that every soldier had stories, interesting stories to tell, and he likely had many of them that could provide a lesson. And I perfectly remember the hatred in his eyes, and only much later I understood that hatred was directed at past events, not me.

The Aiel mini-drama (perfectly named, Eswana) is a perfect way to remind the reader that many lives go on and a lot of stuff happens even during wars, to many people and not only to the main characters.
sandi vogel
33. sinfulcashew
Well, as everyone can see.....somehow I got the 'avatar' loaded.
Don't ask how? I kept doing a browse, and it didn't say upload or anything. I kept trying and finally gave up.
Then Lo and Behold when I went back to profile, there she was!

Anyway, a million thanks and hugs to every one who gave suggestions!

Now I can get back to the reread and back to the topics at hand!
Amar Ramraj
34. aiel1219
@33 sinfulcashew
awwww nuts... No one mentioned that u don't really get any sorta notification when u upload the image?
Poor baby, I think u may have been unnecessarily frustrated for a while there.
Captain Hammer
35. Randalator
I think Perrin is not an achiever but a ta'veren-er. The only skill he brings to the leader-table are levelheadedness and a knack for common sense. Okay not exactely ubiquitous in Randland but Tam, Abell or Bran are just as skilled as Perrin and then some. He's just been pushed into leadership by his ta'verenness. Or more accurately ta'veren pushed other people into seaking his leadership.

Unlike Mat and Rand he is not much of a leader even after he got handed the Two Rivers on a silver platter. The actual work he leaves to his wife. And whenever he is not hiding behind Faile he's basically just telling people what they already know or what anyone with common sense could tell them.

Rand while being put into position by ta'veren just the same actually becomes a Lord. He learns about how politics work, how to run countries, about taxes and justice, etc.

And Mat (again forced into his role by ta'veren) really becomes a general albeit grudgingly. And while he has the gift of countless battle memories it's his own skill that let's him adapt it quickly to his current situation. Which is not achieved by just having knowledge in your head.

The best example to illustrate what I mean is Perrin's meeting with Alliandre. He just drops one brick after another and ends up with a queen oathsworn to him. Rand would have guided her with actual knowledge.

Perrin just stays on level one ("ta'veren does the job") of leadership while the others move on to level two and become leaders of their own merit.
Ellie Virgo
36. Egglie
everyone manipulates Perrin all the time, its like his thing.

In a way I can see that the support he gets here might take away from his achievement but actually, for me, it would have been worse if we saw him just unrealistically becoming awesome with no learning curve. Its a shame that it is a bit of a repeat of Rands feelings/issues in tGH but I forgive that because the TR story has such a fantastic momentum and emotional kick to it.

Loving the Aiel too, although I do wonder, how does maidens kiss work with only two maidens? Mat's description would make it a pretty short game, and not so shocking as Gaul seems to find it :-)
37. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
I think it was not so much the Aes Sedai pulling strings behind the scenes and putting Perrin in charge as.... helping things along. Imagine how events would have transpired without Aes Sedai. Perrin would still have gone and rescued the Luhhans and Cauthons. He would still have convinced people to go to Emond's Hill. He would still have gone hunting Trollocs and likely would have died in that encounter. This is one instance where I don't really have anything bad to say about Aes Sedai interference. Of course, from their perspective even the illusion that they helped a local leader is probably enough to start with.

I do have a comment about Perrin's idiotic insistence on closing the Waygate himself when he can barely stand. Loial ang Gaul by themselves would not be able to manage it? WTF!

Ooohh and double action catapults that explode on impact. Nice... nothing on blossoms of fire but neat all the same.

Tony zbaraschuk @26
Maybe he just wanted to groom somebody else to take charge. Maybe he thought Perrin could do it.

kori @29
Yes. That has entered my mind.
38. Latecomer
Wow - this is why I love the re-read.

I never realised that Luc's hints about the throne to Andor was anything more than misinformation - but of course it fits the Non-Isam personality!

Obviously the shadow corrupted these heirs into having resentment and entitlement issues :)
39. Latecomer
Also - re Faile pushing Perrin or manipulating him into lordliness - I was thinking exactly the opposite.

How lucky is he that he has someone well wersed in what a leader should do and how a lord should behave. He's not being looked up to because of her - its because of who hi is (becoming). Rand or Mat didn't need any outsider changing them - and neither does Perrin.

But his views so far have always been as a layman - imagine if he was paired with someone who was the same. He's be dead from the Trolloc attack now because he insists on doing it all himself. He's lucky as hell he has Faile!
Richard Fife
40. R.Fife
@38 Another interesting comment to Luc's throne envy: Andor has queens. He would have grown up in the environment of even mentioning an Andoran King would get you smacked around some, and yet he insinuates that he should be on the throne. Hmmm, I suspect... uh... flower envy. There we go. Rose envy, perhaps.

We also have to think of one thing: we have no clue what kind of person Luc was pre-Isam. It's great and good to think "Andoran Royalty, must be a grade A person," but also think about what little we know of how Tigraine reacted to being sent off to the waste. She did not exactly sound "happy" when the maidens found her. I could imagine Luc also mucking around in the blight, cursing everyone he knows about stupid Aes Sedai and always telling the truth, and perhaps having already been of the mind that he should be a King, not some fool-warder-wannabe mucking around in the blight. Hmmm....
Jay Dauro
41. J.Dauro
Randalator @35

Isn't one of the jobs of a leader often to validate what a follower already knows is right.

Yes, I fell Perrin is pushing back against having to lead. But he is having to be a leader to men that he grew up with, and probably felt were way beyond him in their capabilities since he was a boy.

And as we see later (in KOD) Perrin comes to actually be the leader, he works out the rescue plans, controls the followers who are out of line, and the ones who are nervous about what is happening. Even here he realizes that he doesn't know everything, but look at how many people follow him.

I think he evolves to be a pretty good leader, it justs takes a bit longer (and something that really drives him to have to do it.)
Michael Johnson
42. twosheddz

Wouldn't that have been the cut-off woman? *ducks*

I think that this is the first re-read that I realized that Slayer was after Fain and not one of the boys.

I think that Perrin's leadership is part Ta'verenness, part manipulation and part that he is a good natural leader. When he grouses about only telling them to do what they already knew to do, he doesn't realize that that is part of what a leader does. His affirmation and validation of their ideas will empower them and strengthen their loyalty to him. Their are also several cases where he will correct or call out individuals when he believes they are wrong, regardless of who they are.
43. RobMRobM
Re c. 42 - thought question for the day: why would Isam say that Fain had "more luck than the White Tower"? I never thought the White Tower was particularly lucky at anything. Discuss. Rob
Richard Fife
44. R.Fife
@43 Rob: it might be the darksides version of "Dark One's Own Luck." One always think that one's opponent is lucky whenever they foil one's plans, cause it sure as snot couldn't have been skill on their part, and the Great Lord knows that it wasn't any failing in one's skill. Nosiree. Musta been luck on their part. Drat.
45. ValanVinyl
Nice post Leigh.

Hmmm... I think that Tam, Abell and the Aes Sedai are "pushing" the leader thing on Perrin is a direct result of Perrin already taking charge by:
1: He and his tavereness got everybody off their farms and into a defensable position at Emond's Field
2: His semi-supernatural Wolf powers and eyes really give him an edge in a small village.
... and leader for that matter

So yeah I think that he's already made himself leader and Tam, Aes Sedai etc. are simply making sure he acts it for the symbol T2R needs.
Alice Arneson
46. Wetlandernw

Good point. Each of the three boys has someone(s) helping him learn leadership. Rand has Moiraine, Lan, Elayne (yes, she DID help him learn statecraft!), Rhuarc, and a few others I've forgotten at the moment. Mat gets all those memories the Finn stuffed in (what a bunch of advisors! all the best fighters and generals!) plus Tuon. Perrin gets a couple of AS, a wife, and the other guys' dads. Hah!

Come to think of it, Faile's training in statecraft and management wouldn't be all that far off of Elayne's. Hmmm. Saldaean vs Andoran, but still. Hmmm.
47. ammbd
Hammer/Axe is not a simplistic either/or statement of creation/destruction.

Jordan knew full well that both have been used for each throughout history.

It's more a showing that a person using a tool has choices to make about when, where & why to use that tool. About showing that life is more wave than particle - sometimes the correct choice is to make war with a hammer/axe & sometimes the correct choice to to build with a hammer/axe.
Agnes Kormendi
48. tapsi
"Does anyone think Faile is pushing the whole lord thing on Perrin simply because it will be easier to introduce "lord Perrin" to her parents than Perrin the blacksmith? Just a thought."

I think it's more like Faile, being Davram Bashere's daughter, and Queen Tenobia's cousin, was one of the first to recognise that Perrin would make a great leader. After all, she obviously didn't only fall for his strong arms and bare chest... And she wants him to live up to his potential. I think that's actually a good thing if partners try to bring out the most from each other, and it is also clear here that the Two Rivers folk need a leader.

The older men already have their place in this community. They are all well-respected, but their roles are more or less defined by the last 20-30 years. Perrin, on the other hand, has just come back, and he has changed a lot -- he is a dark horse, and as such, can take any role. Also, they see that 1) Perrin has a very capable young noblewoman as his future spouse 2) treats Aes Sedai as his equals and gets away with it 3) treats a nobleman like Luc with cold indifference -- these things mean that he has the kind of reputation and power that allow such things. His connections make him a better choice. Plus he shows promise as a leader. So I think that Tam and Abell and Bran choose very wisely when they decide to make him the leader he can be.
Lannis .
49. Lannis
Chapter 42: Um, did anyone else notice that Slayer starts monologuing?! Glad Perrin does a "wtf is this guy doing?" thought... I mean... wtf? Just sayin...

Verin! She totally knew that Alanna was out to bond one of the three ta'veren! Totally! Sneaky sneaky...

kori @ 29: re: easier for Faile to introduce "Lord Perrin" to her parents... interesting thought, definitely deserves merit, IMO.

Leigh: My reread is slightly ahead of yours, and I'm finding myself playing a game of trying to guess which quotes you will use in your recap. I find it interesting what you choose and what I would choose (for the most part, they're exactly the same--some things are just integral, and are important to quote). The Gaul/Chiad thing... yeah, didn't guess that quote... but then, I didn't really understand the triangle there on the first couple rounds through, so looking at it closely is a great idea--so thanks! :)
50. Roxinos
Well, since you gave me a bloody topic, I may as well take it up.

I'm not quite sure Alanna and Verin's motivations. Naturally, I take Verin as the head-of-state in that two-party relationship, so all of Alanna's decisions I think of as being subservient to her will. Except, of course, the occasional excursion which just furthers Alanna's own plans but doesn't actually affect Our Hero.

When you think of Verin as being in charge, you must think of Verin's motivations. We certainly know from later evidence that Verin's main goal is to help Rand at whatever cost. She knows that Perrin and Mat are tied heavily to Rand, and when given a chance to help Perrin (and in turn help Rand) she does so. Propping him up into lordship can only do so much. Perrin would have taken command when he needed to take command, Verin and Alanna were just bolstering his position.

So those are my thoughts.
jane reynolds
51. janie
Glad you had a good bday, Leigh!

Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them?
It doesn't exactly fit Rand, unless his being the DR is the way he was "born great," but it does seem to fit the other two quite well.

I wondered that, too, about Maidens' Kiss. Brings back the whole question about whether there was more to the game than Mat let on.

I was wondering that, too, and I like R.Fife's explanation. I was thinking that there could also be a more personal reason for him saying that. Does anyone know if Luc went to the White Tower for his traditional First Prince of the Sword training before Gitara Moroso sent him off to the Blight?
52. Shawn John
My idea is that Perrin does not of course want to be a leader but Verin and Alanna and Tam and Abbel also Faile see leadership qualities in him and are trying to push him in that direction for his good and the villagers. After all the villagers want him to be there Lord and they are giving them want they want because it is a good choice even though Perrin can't see it himself.
kori lockwood
53. kori
I wouldn't argue against Perrin as being a good leader either. and i do think it's great how at this point Faile is a great support. I think he is a good leader for the simple fact that he is not getting caught up in a power trip over his new found influence. Think about it, your young 20 something and your dating a noble and everyone you know is bowing to you. It would be easy to buy into the hype is all I am sayin'.
sandi vogel
54. sinfulcashew
Thanks for the sympathy!!!!!
I needed that!!!!!
No noone mentioned the automatic placing of the pic.
(It's my granddaughter! by the way)
Alice Arneson
55. Wetlandernw
Egglie@36 and janie@51

Note that the game didn't actually happen in this case. Gaul's shock isn't so much at the game as that one of those two suggested it, and then that it was Chiad. Their clans (Bain & Gaul are Shaarad, Chiad is Goshien) have blood feud, so the attraction between them is a bit difficult for him to contemplate. I think the fact that Chiad and Bain bonded as first-sisters (done because they felt the society bond was inadequate given blood-feud) makes it easier for her. (I.e., she's already been there.)
56. Latecomer
Wetlander - you gave me a Hilarous Image in my head.

Scene: Elayne and Rand huddled in a niche...
Moranine comes up: "RAND! What are you doing"
Rand: "Ummm..Homework, MOM!"
sandi vogel
57. sinfulcashew
Regarding Maidens Kiss,
I always had the impression that there were a LOT of maidens involved.
Could be wrong? (probably wrong)
Alice Arneson
58. Wetlandernw

Hey, they're an ingenious bunch. I'm sure they could find a way to play with only two. ;) And who's to say they have to stop at one kiss each?
59. sps49
Perrin is written to parallel typical US junior officers, particularly those whom the Higher Ups see potential in. He is smart enough to listen to his experienced specialists' recommendations and, as long as those recommendations fit with the Big Picture (including everyone else's Little Pictures), he tells then to go ahead. This keeps him informed and the specialists working toward the common goal.

Unless everyone is in total agreement, somebody has to be the arbiter and decision maker. Everyone has seen Perrin start things up, which puts him in charge by default. Tam and the AS see that a) he is doing fine and b) know they are not likely to improve on his efforts. So they support him and help make him better.

Leaders need to be familiar with everything, but are not expected to be expert at everything.
60. RobMRobM
44 and 51. I agree Mr. Fife could well be correct. On the second part of Janie's question, my guess is that it was likely Luc did the Andor royal line thing and got training in the White Tower. I don't recall text on point but I can't think of any reason why he wouldn't. Also note that Gitara was the AS advisor for the Queen of Andor, so Luc probably had more knowledge of the White Tower (through her) than other royals in other lands. And, if sent into the Blight to be turned to the dark, probably more reason to be angry at the White Tower than anyone. Rob
61. JohnDoe
I don't agree with the thought that Perrin doesn't deserve the leadership roles he has. Yes, sometimes he's forced into leadership by others but so was Rand by Moiraine as previously stated.

@ 35,Randalator
Perrin is very much a leader. We see it in the Two Rivers, Dumai's Wells and in his battle against the Shaido. He's ta'avern. Ta'avern are born to lead and shape the world (Atur Hawkwing for example).

Rand does know how politics work, but so does Perrin. Remember Alliandre says he was the most skilled Daes Daemar player she had met. As for running nations and taxes, Rand did none of that sort. He always placed Stewards to do that (Dobraine in Cairhien, Darlin in Tear, and Gregorin in Andor)

Mat gains his "abilities" because of ta'avern-ness and the Pattern. He even states several times that without his memories, he wouldn't even have the Band of the Red Hand. It's his memories that allow him to adapt to his situations. Plus, how many times have we seen Mat trying to escape his fate and leave Mat? That's what's amazing about the Big Three: they're slowly accepting that they have to lead and the Pattern will force them to.

As for your criticism of Perrin and Alliandre's meeting...As I previously noted, alliandre said that Perrin was the most skilled politician she had met. As for the other part, what person would not be shocked that a queen swore fealty to them? I would literally be saying "ollie, ollie oxen-free" so it wouldn't count. When I was reading that chapter, m eyebrows nearly climbed out of my head.

Your notion of ta'avern levels is interesting. Out of five, I'd say Perrin and Mat were 3.7s and Rand is a 4. I feel as though none of the ta'avern have reached their "peak of awesome-ness," to quote Barney Stinson.
Seth Ball
62. Sethric
Another comment on the confusion of the hammer/axe dichotomy:

I don't think the choice Perrin has to make is made less significant by the fact that both can kill. In reality a blacksmith's hammer is made as a tool. Just because it can be put to use as a weapon shouldn't degrade its purpose. A battle axe is much different than a wood axe; it has a thin blade for slicing and is much lighter. It definitely would not be very suitable for cutting wood. It is only made for one purpose - to kill. The choice is actually quite important for Perrin.
j p
63. sps49
Also, I remember thinking Something Was
Up with Alanna. I don't recall whether I suspected she wanted to bond one of Our Boys but I knew she wanted to get all up in at least one's business.
jane reynolds
64. janie
Good point. Chiad only suggested it to Bain as a joke, not expecting anyone to hear, so maybe it doesn't matter that there are only two of them.
Interesting point also about Chiad having already dealt with the blood-feud issue - I'm not much further ahead than the re-read at the moment, and I don't remember much about how their relationship develops, but it will be interesting to keep that mind when we get there.

Gorgeous pic!
65. SRizea
I've always found Perrin's path to leadership the most palatable. All three boys are significantly helped by the Ta'veren factor, so that's a wash in the comparison.

Mat has a second arbitrary plot device (the Finnish Brain Dump) helping him to his leadership role. Very cool, but kinda hard to swallow.

Rand fights it tooth and nail, then leaps in head first. The only reason he survives is having Moiraine and Thom working behind the scenes (Faile helps Perrin, but these two are another class above her).

Perrin comes into it rather slowly; he gains the skills required to support his talent at a reasonable pace. He also attacks leadership more sanely than Rand or Mat. He identifies followers with expertise, and lets them do what they do best. He becomes the overall coordinator and prime worrier. This alleviates the worries of his experts and keeps them energized to play their respective roles. I find this much more realistic than Rand's "I will do everything" mentality. I'll admit Rand has fewer trustworthy followers, but he doesn't often use those he has due to his Savior Complex.
66. RobMRobM
Random comments
- When P steps out of the wolf dream, he dreams a dream of being with Faile. This boy's in Wuv.
-Also nice juxtaposition of the one avensdora leaf causing trouble at the waygate and Raen's comment that the way of the leaf keeps them safe. Very subtle irony, no?
- Note that I also disagree with commenters that Verin has control of Alanna; note earlier warnings from Verin to P that Alanna has her own agenda. I do think (through process of elimination) that Alanna's secret missions are hunting for TR girls with the spark. They gathered a whole passel of girls awfully quickly once the battle was over.

43. No comment other than Faile is very cool despite the serious illness of Perrin (with her "here, have this stick to chew on" line); and I never before noted that P broke the stick in his teeth -- as noted, the boy is strong!

- High comedy when Perrin and Faile end up in a tangled heap at the bottom of the stairs. Similar in feel to scene in a famous movie involving a post-argument broken bed of a newly married couple and the witness saying "Homeric! Impetuous!" (Can you guess the movie? Chance to show off.)
- Ditto re back and forth on the "staying on horse and out of trouble" speech. I never realized how funny this was until this re-read. Please Leigh - drop being verklempt over Faile threatening the S word and P responding that the trollocs had better kill him first. That is truly funny. Don't be a poop. P and F are really good in this part of TSR.
- While Verin is actively pushing him to be a leader, I believe Tam and others truly think he has the best judgment for the job, even if young. Tam knows far more about battles and kicking ass himself but he knows Perrin is better at leading people to do the right thing.
- I've said it before and will say it again - Tam needs some real screen time in AMOL or I'm going to be aggravated. Everything Tam does is cool and he is underused by RJ during the first 11 books -- I hope and trust to build drama for scenes to come where (1) Tam finally flashes those bladmaster skills "on camera," he finally finds a wife worthy of him (I vote for Morgase) and he reunites with Rand (whom he has deliberately stayed away from to keep Tam safe from being targeted by the dark). I'll be surprised and upset of any of those three things don't happen.

Alice Arneson
67. Wetlandernw
Hey, on the subject of Tam... When I read through Jason's script of the JordanCon opening ceremonies skit, I noticed the following:

WILSON (as Tam)
Rand... take my sword. Go on without me.
JASON (as Rand)
No, Father. I won’t.
Do it, lad. Oh, and I’m not your father. Now go.
But...but... will we meet again?
Of course. I’ve seen the outline for A MEMORY OF LIGHT.
HARRIET (as herself)

So here's my question: for those of you who were there, did those lines actually happen? And was there any reaction from Harriet & co.? Did they let it stand?

I realize that Jason has NOT seen the outline, and Team Jordan has very firmly not been giving clues, but... was this just Jason whistling in the wind, or did they actualy allow one tiny little peek ahead?
lanyo lanyo
68. lanyo
I really always thought Alanna was just a bit crazy. I guess that AS propaganda got me too, I never suspected mourning, or desperately seeking a new warder.
Tam's wicked smart. He knows BIG THINGS are happening, when his adopted kid and a bunch of others are whisked off with AS, and when one gets back he's even more changed than Tam himself was on his own return. If Perrin seems to lead, he should lead.
The talking smack to AS faces probably doesn't hurt Perrin's street cred tho
69. AYE Aye Sedai
@ 66 and others - I think Tam and Abel want the quite simple life in the TR after the battle and thus don't want the folks to look to them for the leadership - - They had their time in the spotlight and they are content to be the majors and LTs rather than the general - they realize Perrin has stepped into the role and are perfectly willing to be in the subordinate role - obviously they prepared the town defenses and the AS prepared some surprises.

Would like to have seen Verrin poke and pry at Taim to explore Rands history.

With reading all 10000+ posts since we left TEAR - I forget does Gaul like Chiad or Bain (WOTFAQ is missing this critical info)- hopefully he will get both - reminds me of my teen camp days when you liked one girl but could not ever separate her from the herd to see if she would go to the dance with you - stupid wetlanders...

To all - like the variety of discussion posts and hated the extra posts *( yes Rick Rolling and other stupid stuff) esp when just to drive the posts to crack the system - too much inanity (save it all for your facebook pages:P )- also lets at least stay on the current book if not on the specific chapters for analysis as it seems that we are picking up new fans/readers and we don't want to spoil certain things - like who killed Asmo.
Leigh Butler
70. leighdb
CalaLily @ 7:

Don't worry, it happens all the time.

ammbd @47:

I like that. Well said.

Lannis @49:

The quotes are kind of funny; I use them for multiple reasons. Sometimes it's just because the summary part's been going on too long and I want to break it up; sometimes it's because I can't think of a way to sum a particular bit up that wouldn't be longer than the actual quote; and sometimes, of course, it's because the quote is hilarious and/or awesome.

Wetlandernw @67:

Pfft. Jason's in showbiz. He's a lying liar and you shouldn't believe a word he says. But I had no need to say it twice.

*toothy grin*
71. Freelancer

So, you like John Wayne, yes?

I too am in the camp of Tam Deserves More. Here we have the one man in the Two Rivers with real military experience, including combat in more than one conflict. A calm, unassuming, but very solid and thoughtful man. And oh, yeah, a Blademaster. Actually, quite the Hondo type himself.

Yes, Verin, Alanna, and Faile push Perrin to be a leader. Yes, Tam, Abell, and Bran join in after it becomes apparent that he's IT. I've no problem with any of that. Perrin doesn't see it, doesn't believe it, doesn't do anything to assume the position, so others help him to realize it. Prior to being faced with annihilation, the folk of the Two Rivers were fine being independent, self-reliant, and private. With DOOM coming down the road, something different is necessary. Good thing there's a ta'veren handy.

Kinda funny how so many people say Perrin is their least favorite of the ta'veren trio, but here they're all giving him mad propz.
Alice Arneson
72. Wetlandernw
Rats. I figured that was the answer, but I'm such an optimist. Well, not really, but sometimes you get desperate, and November's a long ways away. :)
73. Freelancer
I take a much different view from Leigh or ammbd@47 regarding the axe v the hammer. A blacksmith's hammer is made to build. And while axes can be used to construct, Perrin's is a waraxe. It is made to kill, you'd have difficulty using it as a tool.

Perrin's mythological archetype is The Builder, and it is surely the hammer he is meant to wield. But at the moment, he believes it more important that he be a Warrior. It seems that even T'a'R knows more about him than he does of himself, or perhaps a little of the "real" Perrin sneaks through and causes the hammer to appear first. The choice is shown to be black and white, either/or. That the hammer flickers back and forth with the axe is his internal conflict, which would be less distinct if each device was seen having dual purposes.
Ofer Nave
74. odigity
Nobody answer Wetlandernw. AMOL spoilers will be punished severely, starting with a RickRolling storm, and escalating steadily from there.

La la la la I can't hear you la la la la
75. Freelancer
Uhh, Leigh already answered, and did so quite well, I'd say.
76. Shadow_Jak
does Verin and Alanna’s (and Faile’s and Tam’s) rather blatant maneuvering of Perrin into a position of authority diminish his achievement of Lordly status

I think everyone is missing a very important point.
The people of the Two Rivers are known for their independence (read mule-headedness).

There is no way they would have followed anyone from outside the Two Rivers be they Aes Sedai, Warder, or the Queen of Andor. You don't tell Two Rivers folk what to do! Sure, they might listen and nod, but then they'd go right ahead and do whatever they thought best.

Neither would they have followed Tam or Able. They had not even found anyone willing to take in the Luhans and Cauthons once they had them rescued. So it would have been as always, within each village, the Mayor and the village council; the Wisdom and the Women's Circle deciding what to do. Then trying to come to agreement between them (read: convince the other their plan was best)

Perrin was the only one to step into the role of leader; leader of the entire Two Rivers. And if you recall, he initially stepped into that role without any coaxing from Aes Sedai or Faile or anyone else. Not that he tried to claim leadership. No, he just set about doing what needed doing.

There's a saying, when something needs to be done... Lead, follow, or get the hell out of the way! Perrin led the way, and Tam, Able, Gaul, and even Faile followed. Evntually so did the rest of the Two Rivers. (Guess the Whitecloaks handled the "get the hell out of the way" part)
sandi vogel
77. sinfulcashew
Anyone remember the 'Kiss' game, with Mat, as being more involved? More maidens involved?
That seems to stick in my (fuzzy) memory.

Thank you Janie.
I just love that pic of her.
78. Freelancer
Yes, Mat's Maiden's Kiss event involved quite a few of the Aiel chicas. He didn't make it back to his own bed until near dawn.
Chris Hall
79. bookwormchris
I too would love to see Tam dust off those blademaster skills. We don't see much in The Eye of the World, mostly the aftermath. I want some awesome blademaster action. That said, I don't think he will get a certain ex-queen to be his wife. I'm not sure he will ever have another wife. I could be wrong.

Perrin gets tired of leadership for the Duopotamians because he is telling people he grew up with (often much older) to do what they would have done anyways. He doesn't want to be a Lord. He wants to be a blacksmith. (And to have some alone time with his new wife.) Personally I would get annoyed if normally fairly rational people starting coming up to me and asking me what to do when they already know what to do. Could this be part of his taveren power? Part of it might be the vast changes going on in T2R and everywhere else. I do love it when Faile scolds him for hanging out with people he knew as a kid (she is trying to train them as servants, if memory serves) while she is stuck dealing with his petitioners.

Also, how old is Faile? I don't buy that she is super young, but I am interested in any textual (or Creator) evidence as to her age. I remember it was brought up way back in the rereads somewhere. Possibly just the comments. My memory is spotty.

I have nothing else to say right now other than I can't wait for the conclusion of the Battle of Two Rivers. Whitecloaks suck, btw. Bunch of cowards. *smacks Galad for good measure*
sandi vogel
80. sinfulcashew
Thanks for that info Freelancer!
Nice to know that the brain cells aren't TOO shot!
81. Freelancer
I never disparage the brain cells of the mature.

"Old age and treachery beats youth and exuberance...every single time!"

My 80 year old mother, recovering from a stroke, still whips the room at Jeopardy.
Alice Arneson
82. Wetlandernw
bookwormchris @79

We've debated how accurately you can interpret the two bits of info we're given on Faile's age, so here they are and take them as you like:

One year ago, give or take at most two months, Ewin Finngar was specifically listed as "fourteen years old". Somewhere in the upcoming few chapters (the next couple of months), Faile notes that he is "the same age as she". So... if you take it literally, she's 15. If you take it more loosely, like maybe Ewin's birthday was close and that could have been a bit more than a year ago, etc., he could possibly have just turned 16. Then you can decide how loosely to interpret "the same age" from Faile's perspective.

So: minimum 15, maximum 18 if you stretch it.
83. Shadow_Jak
Of the three, Perrin is the one most willing to accept responsibility. When he heard about Whitecloaks in the Two Rivers, he never hesitated. He took the repsonsibility to return. (Even though the only thing he could think to do was surrender to them)
When he arrived to find the Trollocs back, his family dead, and the Luhhans and Cauthons prisoners, he had to act. He never tried to recruit followers, he was just doing what he had to do. As Tam said when they were looking over the Whitecloak camp before the rescue, when Perrin tried to apologize for giving them orders...
Perrin, you took charge back at Jak's place. This isn't the first time I've followed a younger man who could see what had to be done."

Contrast this to Rand and his flight from everyone in TDR. And Mat who is still (at this point in the book), just trying to figure out a way to get away. He doesn't even begin to accept his role until the end of TFH. And is still fighting it even well into the TLoC.

Sure Perrin is uncomfortable in his role. He has to learn to lead and rule, right in front of the people who watched him grow up. He left the Two Rivers as a boy, now he is back as their leader. Neither Rand nor Mat faced that challenge. Good thing he has Faile, Tam, Abel, Bran, Verin, Gaul and others to help and encourage. But Perrin is the one who led. He was the only one there who could have rallied and united the entire Two Rivers.
John Fitzingo
84. Xandar01
83. Shadow_Jak
Of the three, Perrin is the one most willing to accept responsibility.

What an interesting thought... What if was Rand or Mat that had gone back to TR?

Mat was just looking for a way out, and at this point his talents have yet to truly emerge. Had he gone back, he probably would have been killed thus removing one of the legs of the "tripod."

If Rand had gone back, would the Aiel in the stone followed? What kind of shock would that be to the TR folks? Rand the evil DR, coming back with savages, would they have followed them as easily as they followed Perrin? I think not. We would have seen a whole lot of stubbornness going on. Plus Fain may have actually gotten to him, especially if the Aiel were not with him.

Perrin is the best choice to lead TR, irregardless of what helped him get there.

Any other guesses what might have happened if Mat or Rand had returned instead?
Captain Hammer
85. Randalator
Perrin is very much a leader. We see it in the Two Rivers, Dumai's Wells and in his battle against the Shaido. He's ta'avern. Ta'avern are born to lead and shape the world (Atur Hawkwing for example).

What happens in the Two Rivers is only ta'veren at work. What he does there almost anyone could have done. Tam, Abell, Bran...the only thing that prevents them from doing so ist the lack of ta'veren to drive the stubborn duopotamians towards their leadership.

Rand does know how politics work, but so does Perrin. Remember Alliandre says he was the most skilled Daes Daemar player she had met.

That's what Alliandre thinks, but read that scene again. Perrin is "half distracted" to the point where he doesn't even listen to her and when he apologizes he's all "Oh crap, I called her by her name!" and immediately after that his mind wanders back to how to deal with Faile marriage-wise.

No, Perrin is probably the least skilled Daes Dae'mar player on the whole continent. What happens in this scene is Perrin royally screwing up and ta'veren twisting it to be the right thing.

As for running nations and taxes, Rand did none of that sort. He always placed Stewards to do that (Dobraine in Cairhien, Darlin in Tear, and Gregorin in Andor)

O yes he did. He only installed stewards when he had conquered too many nations to deal with on his own. But he very much deals with injustice in law and taxes in Tear and Cairhien. Remember the numerous meetings with the High Lords in Tear and how he thinks that Elayne's teaching helped him dealing with them. He meets frequently with Norry in Caemlyn and constantly thinks about things like if the servants in the palace are still being paid after Morgase's death.

Gregorin is in Illian by the way, not Andor.

Mat gains his "abilities" because of ta'avern-ness and the Pattern. He even states several times that without his memories, he wouldn't even have the Band of the Red Hand. It's his memories that allow him to adapt to his situations. Plus, how many times have we seen Mat trying to escape his fate and leave Mat? That's what's amazing about the Big Three: they're slowly accepting that they have to lead and the Pattern will force them to.

I never claimed that Mat would have become a general without the memories or that he didn't try to escape his fate as all three Ta'veren did at some point. But as I said earlier knowledge is worth nothing without the skill to adapt it to a certain situation. I could read countless books on warfare but that still wouldn't make me a skilled leader in the field because I would not be able to adapt my knowledge to the given situation.

Also Rand and Mat accept their responsibilities. Perrin does not. By Winter's Heart Perrin basically says "Screw the World. I want Faile back. Let the Shadow win for all I care!" and completely abandons his duty to the world. Which will have dire consequences.

As for your criticism of Perrin and Alliandre's meeting...As I previously noted, alliandre said that Perrin was the most skilled politician she had met. As for the other part, what person would not be shocked that a queen swore fealty to them? I would literally be saying "ollie, ollie oxen-free" so it wouldn't count. When I was reading that chapter, m eyebrows nearly climbed out of my head.

See above. What happened there was 100% ta'veren and 0% skill.

If you consider that skill then Rand sitting in an Inn in Cairhien doing nothing is worth the "Thom-Merrilin-memorial-Trophy for outstanding skill in the field of Daes Dae'mar related badassery".
Helen Peters
86. Helen
Rob @66 you're going to be disappointed, Morgase is going off with Tallanvor.

@71 Just coz Perrin is my least fav doesn't mean I don't love him, truly.

@82 Re Faile's age, the first time we see her, through Perrin's eyes in tGH, Perrin thinks she's his age, so late teens 19 or 20, and that's a few months ago now.

With Perrin taking over as leader of t2R. 'You can't have more than one leader' (I think that was a different series of books) and though Tam or Abel or Bran could have done it, it would not have been as effective as they were seen as equals. Had Tam come back from war and not settled down being a farmer he would have been able to do it. But everyone sees him as still a farmer, not a leader. Perrin has been gone for 18 months or so, time to learn all sorts of things, also time for the blacksmith apprentice memories to go fuzzy round the edges so people are more likely to accept him.

What struck me mainly about these chapters and the following is the number of people in t2R, esp round EF. I had just assumed small village fuedal England type number, a few hundred, everyone know each other etc. But with 70 young men (say 15 to 25 years old) following Perrin, then being able to fend off 500 trollocs (and later on as well) this place is much bigger than I imagined at first.

Need to go now, see you all later.
Antoni Ivanov
87. tonka
Also Rand and Mat accept their responsibilities. Perrin does not. By Winter's Heart Perrin basically says "Screw the World. I want Faile back. Let the Shadow win for all I care!" and completely abandons his duty to the world. Which will have dire consequences.

Do you really think that if Elayne, Aviendha or Min were in real danger Rand wouldn't leap to save them. I am sure he will forget the Last Battle and everything just to save them. That's his weakness (in his oponion) .

And everyone of the trio has their own strengths. Mat is a brillant tactician (yes thanks to the old memories but still it is as it is) , gambler, person of honor (when he gives his word he keeps it), he is the "rescue man" . And more of course.

Perrin ,he thinks very thoroughly, he is quite good at "puzzles" and seeing how the things should be done (which is extremely important for any leader) . He is always frank and straight-forward ( he always speaks what he believes) .He is extremely responsible.And more.

Rand is my favourite character(besides Moiraine) and I can tell many good things about him .He is extremely good at Daes Dae'mar . I found it amusing and a bit irritating when Elayne was shocked how he could see through her plan/deception so easily in Winter Heart. After all he is schooled by Moiraine, in Tear and Cairhien).And more (yeah I know I mentioned only one thing actually).

They all are ta'avern,they have their super special abilities and their own strengths.
88. RobMRobM
@67 - the script don't lie.

@71 Freelancer wins bragging rights re the "Homeric! Inpetuous!" quote from Barry Fitzgerald commenting on the bed of John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara in The Quiet Man. Well done.

@73. Agree 100%.

@86. You could be right but Tallanvor is IMO has too many weak points to marry Morgase and have it a happy ending. My prediction is he dies with valor and Tam steps in. I've noted in earlier threads that there is a logical argument that Tam is the source of the "Two Rivers speech" that Morgase vaguely remembers from her youth as referenced in the EOTW throneroom scene in Camelyn (i.e. there is no one else from the TR identified in the text that could be the source and Tam spent enough time in Camelyn to marry a local merchant's daughter). And Tam likes redheads. And wouldn't it be a good payoff for the happy ending of Rand, Elayne, Avi, Min and the kids hanging out in the castle, with Morgase and Tam living down the hall....

89. SusanB
I think Perrin becoming the leader is very realistic. Tam & Abel may know how to fight, but that doesn't mean they would make a good leader. Remember, neither of them was Mayor, so they either aren't interested or don't believe they would be effective. Ex, Gareth Bryne is a great military commander, but he has never been the leader of his people. Tam, Abel, the AS & Faile each have strong individual talents, but I don't think any of them have the ability to "lead" the people of the two rivers. I think Faile's skills put her closest, but she is an outsider & would not be accepted w/out Perrin. Good leaders are good at inspiring their people & listening to their advisors before deciding on the best course of action. People are inspired by Perrin (whether b/c of his taveraneness or his personality/experience) & his is surrounded by knowledgable people whom he listens to. I think his success in rescuing people from the white cloaks & fighting the trollocs solidifies his postion as leader. What Tam, Abel, AS & Faile do just prevents him from sneaking away from his position. The position he earned.
Ellie Virgo
90. Egglie
RobMRobM@88 - just one point about the Tam/Morgase relationship. Rand actually mentions his father by name in the throne room scene and there is no reaction from Morgase. They could have met briefly, with Tam in capacity as 2nd captain of the Illianer companions, but there was some speculation (possibly not you) that they might have met in Tar Valon and known each other quite well. Without even a blink at hearing his name I don't buy it. Not saying you are wrong about her remembering his accent just adding to the discussion (because I couldn't be bothered to go back and find the actual thread where we were discussing it before).
91. RebelLives
Shadow_Jak@83, I disagree about Rand running away from responsibilities in TDR. I felt like it was more about him trying to escape the push and pull of Morainne on one side and Ishy's dreams on the other. He was pretty sure at that point he was the Dragon Reborn and knew he was going to have to pull Callandor, so he was running to spring the trap as quickly as he could to get it over with.
92. tailspinner
Welcome back Leigh....

Re: your comment on Loial, doesn't he become integral later? My understanding was that he was going to convince the ogiers to come fight in the last battle. RJ didn't know what to do with him in the meantime, but I think they will be critical in Tarmon Gaidon.
Captain Hammer
93. Randalator
Helen @86

Re Faile's age, the first time we see her, through Perrin's eyes in tGH, Perrin thinks she's his age, so late teens 19 or 20, and that's a few months ago now.

Well she might look older but it's a fact that she is only 15 or 16 at most in LoC. (WoTFAQ)
94. CalaLily
In regards to Perrin’s role as leader: I believe he is fit for the role, but having people who S’d you when you were little and whom you listened to as the older and wiser members of your village suddenly submit to your authority for no real (at least as he sees it) reason would be a little weird. It’s like, if all of a sudden your principal stopped calling you to the office to set you down or praise your progress and started asking you how to run the school. Some people might take advantage of that, but I see Perrin as the “good boy” at this point, and utterly confused at the sudden shift in status quo. Especially since it puts him at the top. After all, he’s only 18/19.

This isn’t to say Perrin doesn’t have the skills needed, or that the only reason he’s in the position he’s in is because of Verin, Alanna, or Faile tugging/pushing him into it. He was “in the lead” back in TEotW when the party got separated and he was with Egwene. I mean, imagine what it looks like to the Two Rivers folk. A teenage boy, an apprentice even, is “stolen” in the middle of the night by an Aes Sedai, a person who for all intents and purposes was something of a mix between the Dragon, a Queen and every myth you could toss in there. A year later he suddenly pops back up, trailing Aiel, an Ogier, a foreign young woman who obviously is in some sort of relationship with him, and oh yeah, he came through the Ways. Not to mention he calls the two Aes Sedai already in the Two Rivers by their given names WITHOUT the honorifics, and he goes to rescue women and children from the Whitecloaks and hunt trollocs, those beastly things that eat people. Plus he knows Tinkers enough to trust them to come into the fortified town. Heck, I’d put him in charge, too.

Perrin: "...really, I'm not a lord. D:"
Me: "You are now, pal."
Blake Engholm
95. UncrownedKing
@93 Man this still creeps me out that she's only 16. She comes off as sooo much older. But then again, 16 then (what I consider to be 'then'=late dark ages) would be like 22-25 now.

On the Perrin stuff:

Your only as good as your supporting cast.

Perrin is an unexperienced leader who leads heart first most of the time (doing whats right instead of necessary) which makes him a hugely believable character. But he makes up for lack of experience by surrounding himself (intentionally of not) with people who know their stuff.

With these people surrounding him,
A) his Ta'vareness comes out
B) He's learning what it is to be a leader
C) He's becoming the most level minded, and least *headdesk* characters.

He's my favorite character so I may be biased,XD, but in the coming chapters his Leadership comes out in full force, and this is what binds the TR army to him. The scene with the whitecloaks is so cool, and the big battle, and the tinkers, and yeah and.

PS I found a new icon and its probably the most perfect icon in the history of iconography. Yeah...Iconography
96. CalaLily
@UncrownedKing: :o Care to share?
97. CalaLily
.o.! There it is! It is pretty cool. xD
Captain Hammer
99. Randalator
Just to make clear: I'm not saying that Perrin could not be a good leader. He's awesome in stage one of leadership (ta'veren-ness -> the Two Rivers). But so far he hasn't evolved from stage one like Rand and Mat did. He just goes on as always and let's ta'veren/Faile do the job.

And when he finally has to take charge (read: when Faile is out of the picture) he takes the wrong off-ramp and leads everyone down shittyness-lane instead towards Cairhien.

That's really sad. Especially since he used to be my favourite character...
Michael Catapano
100. hoping
Made it before post 100

re AS and Perrin.
Alot of their motives have already been discussed above. They are AS after all and they manipulate and scheme as easily as breathing. I think one of Verin's reasons is she has an academic curiosity in how ta'veren works so she pushes and prods and observes. She is probably busy scribbling down the results.

'This boy's in Wuv'
They ended up in the soft grass and then...
I wondered if he went into a regular dream, a drug induced dream or if he was pulled into faile's dream ala Eg and G. Faile did alot of blushing for no reason in that chapter, but I think she probably stayed up all night to nurse Perrin.

Certainly TR people are stubborn, but they have never faced a problem like trollocs and an invading army before, in their memory anyway. So they are ready to follow someone and actually see Luc as a leader and adopt some of his suggestions for defense. Of course, Perrin(+faile) is ideally suited for the role.

RJ said faile was 17yo. It might have been at a tPOD book signing.
Blake Engholm
101. UncrownedKing
And when he finally has to take charge (read: when Faile is out of the picture) he takes the wrong off-ramp and leads everyone down shittyness-lane instead towards Cairhien.

Ok since I just finished KoD, I'm going to talk about this. Faile was captured for 52 days (book time) now yes this took 2 books (or three i guess), but the why is what no one considers.

There was about 9000 new characters introduced in WH and CoT and they all got their own POV and chapters. I literally found nothing in the Perrin story, that annoyed me. All he was doing was trying to get his wife, Morgase, and the queen of Ghaldaen back.

This is way more productive then almost every other character. Almost every other.

And then the scene where he finally has the man power to attack the Shaido and release her = Pure, uncut, Awesomeness.

I am just confused at all the anti-Perrinness. I understand that Faile bothers people. Strong women seem to do that with this crowd. But you can't tell me it was a bad story plot.
Captain Hammer
102. Randalator

The shittyness is what he made of the Prophet situation by not focussing on his task and giving a damn about the dynamics between the different factions following him. That's going to lead to unpleasantness of massive proportions...
Blake Engholm
103. UncrownedKing
We can all agree he botched that. Should have tied up meseama and threw him through a gate way. Guys a real asshole. He turned Aram against Perrin! That is messed up
Michael Catapano
104. hoping
Great avatar. Definitely has Perrin written all over it
Richard Fife
105. R.Fife
On the question of the skit script:
While yes, Jason is who wrote it, Wilson and Harriet delivered all the lines straight-faced, but aside from the audience hootin' and hollerin', nothing else was said of it. See also the volunteer mat @ the 'finn scene, and the answer to "Do you always answer ?".
106. CTyler
Re: #101 (uncrowned king)

The thing that bothers me the most about the whole Perrin/Faile/Shaido/Malden thing is that the whole saga starts in Book SEVEN (Rand and Perrin fake-fighting and Perrin's mini-army heading to Ghealdan) and as of the end of Book ELEVEN he's still there!!! That's 5 freaking books for one (admittedly complex) storyline. Meanwhile we've got forests' worth of chapters on Andoran successional politics (singlehandedly turning Elayne into the most annoying and - for me - hated character in the whole saga).

My thought on Tam al'Thor - I've always felt (Cadsuane POVs notwithstanding) that the reason RJ has held off a Tam/Rand reunion for so long is that Tam will be the key to restore Rand's humanity (his ability to laugh and cry, etc). I think re-uniting w/ Tam will result in a Good Will Hunting-esque "It's not your fault" Taster's Choice Moment, with Tam playing the role of the bearded Robin Williams.
Amar Ramraj
107. aiel1219
Who's Tam gonna end up with??? Wait for it....wait for it... Verin!!!!

She was smitten by Tam in Tar Valon when he went with MAt's dad. That's y she REALLY went back to T2R... and maybe she had met him when he was younger during the Aiel war. She's not really sneaky, just embarassed abt being in wuv.
LOL!!! ok there's my cookie theory of the month!!! :)
108. Greyhawk
Uncrowned King @109
"I understand that Faile bothers people. Strong women seem to do that with this crowd."

I have to disagree. It is not strong women, but shrill stereotypes that are the problem, at least as I see it. See my post TSR Part 3 at 88.
109. Greyhawk
Typo --- meant to say @101.
110. MSedai
Re: 106

Yes! I like that theory on a Tam/Rand reunion. I can't remember, does anyone ever tell Tam what is up with Rand? I would think the "your adopted son is the Dragon Reborn" conversation would be memorable for me, but I can't pull it up. Can anyone tell me?
It really seems that nobody but the readers actually knows who Rand really is- Re: royal family connections, etc.

And yeah, I really forgot exactly how painful the kidnapping of Faile story arc was to read. I went back and started reading again at WH, because I had basically forgotten totally the last three books. (They are the ones I've only read once. Hey, I'm a late-bloomer with this series...) Now, halfway through COT, holy cow. The first time I ever read this series, I devoured the first 9 in 2 1/2 months, but it took me that long to read the last two. It is like the epitome of miscommunication and every relationship that can get possibly screwed up, getting screwed up. The story arcs are seriously so frustrating to read the first time, and I can only get through them now because I started there, and I still have momentum. Plus, I know it will end some time.

So yeah, the pure frustration in this story arc is enough to make Perrin my least fave super boy. I mean, even Aviendha and Birgitte get annoying.

Off topic slightly, I know, but I can understand that even though Perrin is pretty darn awesome in this story arc, his later actions really cloud things.
Blake Engholm
111. UncrownedKing
In KoD right before the attack on Malden, Tam comes to Perrin via portal, and either asks about Rand being the Dragon or just looks at Perrin in a way that conveys that he is in the know and is saddened by it.

Its in the end of KoD
Amar Ramraj
112. aiel1219
yeah Tam knows
Frowning, Tam watched Grady vanish into the gray murk. "I could wish I'd had some other way to get here," he said. "Fellows like
him visited the Two Rivers a while back. One called himself Mazrim Taim, a name we'd all heard. A false Dragon. Only now he wears a black coat with fancy embroidery and calls himself the M'Hael. They talked everywhere about teaching men to channel, about this Black Tower." He freighted the words with sourness. "The Village Councils tried to put a stop to it, and the Women's Circles, but they ended up taking above forty men and boys with them. Thank the Light some listened to sense, or I think they'd have had ten times that." His gaze shifted to Perrin. "Taim said Rand sent him. He said Rand is the Dragon Reborn." There was a touch of questioning in
that, perhaps a hope for denial, perhaps a demand to know why Perrin had kept silent.

--KOD Chapter 29

I see sum1 beat me to it...but I spent too much time lookin up da quote LOL!! so...
Marie Adomako
113. MSedai
@111, 112

Thanks! See, I don't remember anything at all about KOD!!!! Good thing I'm almost there. I keep reading references to things that happened, and think, how did I miss that? By getting really screwed up with my reading at freaking COT!!! That's how!!!
Alex Johns
114. almuric
What people don't seem to understand is that being good at fighting does not make you a good general. Tam and Abell just don't have what it takes to unite the Two Rivers or else they would have started while they were hiding out. They either don't have the force of personality or the large-scale vision of what is necessary. And I know if I was in their shoes I would have been doing the exact same thing as them. No way do I have enough hubris to think that I would be able to lead others into doing the correct thing.

I think that this is what the ta'veren business does for Perrin. He sees what he thinks should be done and has no problem telling people what it is. And it's the right thing. And that's because the Pattern or Wheel needs him to do these things.

And this sort of leads into a discussion as to whether anyone in Randland actually has free will. You can look at it as Jordan just writing what he wanted to happen but if you're looking at it from the viewpoint that this actually happened in some alternate reality, then what does it really mean to be ta'veren and do any of the heroes have free will? Could they walk away? Are the prophecies just someone looking into the future and seeing stuff that will definitely happen or are they suppositions based on available information? Is there any prophecy that didn't happen? Without at least one failed prophecy, I'm gonna say that at least the ta'veren boys don't have free will. And perhaps not the SuperGirls either.

Does The Dark One have free will? If I'm the Dark One and the prophecies say that I will be defeated, I'm gonna do my damnedest to make sure they don't happen. I'm at least not gonna make Slayer, since he's in the prophecies and I made him. I may not have direct control over much else, but that one at least (I think) required my direct intervention and I'd be an idiot to help the prophecies come to a successful conclusion.

Perrin probably has that innate quality that makes people follow you. Patton had it. Stonewall Jackson. Quite a few of the generals in the Civil War did. I'd guess many generals do, but almost certainly not all. (Sometimes the promotion board does stupid things.) Some, but again not all, presidents. Taft didn't have it, for sure. Washington had it, of course.

Think of the Henry the Fifth speech in Act IV, Scene III. If you can give that speech and really mean it and get people to fight at 10-to-1 odds, then you're an innate leader of men.
"He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam'd,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian."
Perrin is that guy. His problem is that he's too humble to believe it. Which is why he needs a support staff. But it's entirely possible for others like Tam and Abell and Faile to see it in you and try to get you to see it. Because if you're in the Two Rivers right now and you know anything about fighting you realize you need a general and the best candidate around is Perrin and hey, he's ta'veren, so even better. So the reason they goad him to leadership is that they need to in order for the Two Rivers to have a chance at surviving.
Alice Arneson
115. Wetlandernw
105. R.Fife

Thanks, that's what I was really after. They didn't change the lines, they just popped them out with no reaction whatever, and let the fans make of it what they will. And we still have to wait... and wait... and wait... and eventually RAFO. Which is what we'd have done either way.
AJ MacPherson
116. Mackey62
I didn't read all the other posts, but just wanted to jump in with my 2 cents about the whole thrusting leadership on Perrin. First, and this is especially the case with Tam, I see him being the trusted sergent, he knows what to do, and asks the question in such a way to make it look like Perrin is making the decision. Why? because just like in the real world, we have all met people who have "it", that ability that says this person is a leader (In WOT it would be ta'veren). Other people want to be leaders and try to act like it and everyone else just cringes at the thought of them leading.

Now the people doing the "thrusting" are, except for Faile, experienced, older, intelligent people who understand that a figure head is needed to when, or rather, something greater than the individual to make people fight harder (not an original thought). Faile knows the same being raised in a "Royal Family". It all makes sense to me. But Tam is by far the best part of this because of the leading questions and statements that help to educate Perrin without talking down to him. Throw in the fact about RJ's military experience and this becomes even a more important realization to me. The whole young officer thrown into the field and if he is not educated quickly, they will all die.
Amar Ramraj
117. aiel1219
I just sortta realised summn. Not sure if I'm right but the best way to find out is to post a comment here.

It seems to me that the 1st time Perin shows his leadership skills without being pushed and without thinking "but I'm not a lord" was when he's heading in to rescue Fails. If u read that chapter I just quoted from KoD u'll notice how he treats ppl, Telling Tam there's nothing to be done abt it now and how he announces Tam as his first captin etc.

Also the first time that we see Mat acting completely as a leader without being pushed by Ta'veren or other ppl and him not trying to find a way out is when he's facing the Seanchan army (well almost entirely converts from "the wetlands") sent by Suroth to Kill Tuon.

yet another similarity?
Alice Arneson
118. Wetlandernw
I think I already said this, but I have to say it again. Tam was once the Second Captain of the (Illianer) Companions. He does have what it takes to be a leader, and has experience in leading soldiers. He could take the leadership role for this situation. (Note, I'm not talking about becoming Lord of the Two Rivers, just about the immediate situation in this section, the defense of 2R.) For his own reasons, he believes it's better to have Perrin seen as the leader, and with all his fighting experience, he takes the perfect approach (as noted by several commenters). As far as his reasons, several folks have presented some very plausible suggestions, so I won't repeat them here.

Okay, I'll 'fess up. It just irritates me when someone says Tam "couldn't" be the general. He could, but chooses not to. 'K?
Aidan Young
119. aidanyoung1102
One of the things about Perrin's leadership qualities: he showed up in the TR and immediately starting doing things to change their bad situation. The Aes Sedai and Tam and Abell were already there but they were pretty much just hiding out. So Perrin was the best leader of the group from the very beginning, simply because he started doing what was right. The others recognized that and did what they could to support him. In that sense, I think he is a more natural leader than either Matt or Rand, who both had to have all of these self-realization moments before they would do anything but run from their responsibility.

That's one of my favorite things about Perrin. He just comes into a situation and does what he believes is right and speaks what he believes is true. And he's such a GOOD guy that anyone would stand up and follow him.

As far as the Axe and the Hammer, to Perrin the Hammer represents building and the Axe destruction. And he longs for the days when he can return to building something good in the world instead of feeling like he's always tearing something down.
Shawn Spearman
120. fishes153
Greyhawk @24

I am working on my re-read (read - audio books) and just finished the Battle of Malden in KOD. During that battle, Perrin watches Tam order the archers to fire on the oncoming Shaido. He thinks Tam has ordered it too early, but discovers he is wrong as the archers hit their mark. Perrin mentally berates himself for doubting Tam’s ability. Tam knows what he is about, but allows Perrin to make the decision to help him “come into his own” so to speak.

Tony @26

Also in that battle or prior to it, Tam mentions to Perrin that he had hoped to “never hear that sound again” (speaking of the rat-tat-tat of the Shaido spears and bucklers). I think Tam was hoping to avoid full out conflict preferring to go solo instead.

Twosheddz @42

This is the first time I caught the Luc/Isam connection to Fain too. I think I read these books too fast to catch the subtleties. (But then subtlety has never been my strong suit – now that I think of it, I could have done real well growing up in EF)

Here’s a thought that occurred to me during KOD. We discussed the possibility of Eggie being Ta’veren, and RJ said no, but that there might be some other females who were. What about Faile. I know, I know – it’s hard to image someone so annoying as being Ta’veren (which equals coolness). But think about it. Anytime she is not in Perrin’s Ta’veren shadow, she exerts very Ta’veren-like qualities. Look at her whole role in KOD. She influences people’s lives almost as much as Perrin does in the Two Rivers. Going off of John Doe’s rating system @61, I’m thinking she might be a 2.5-3 on the Ta’veren scale. I’m just sayin’…..
Captain Hammer
121. Randalator
aiel1219 @117

Mat is a leader long before that. Basically since way back in TFoH when the Band forms. During the Battle of Cairhien ta'veren forced him to lead. After that he became the leader (despite complaining every minute).

But complaints aside he DOES step up, organizes the Band in effective units, appoints captains, sets rules (like the Redarms performing police duty), deals out the money and generally is in charge of everything. Where the Band goes, what the Band does, when they do and how they's Mat calling the shots.
Amar Ramraj
122. aiel1219
@121 Randalator I'm not saying that mat isn't a leader b4 this but those things that he did were suggestions from those old memories, basically all his decisions concerning the band are and a major reason the band is following him is his memories and luck.

Basically Mat's Leadership = Ta'verenness +dead guys pushing him in the right direction

Perin's Leadership = Ta'verenness + living guys pushing him in the right direction.

Mat is the shoot's from the hip kinda hero, so he gets memories of tons of battle leaders to make sure that even if he is shooting from the hip he has enough knowledge n xp to hit his target.

While Perin is that careful thinking kinda guy so he gets living ppl to push him into drawing the gun b4 it's too late.

So basically based on theircharacter types the both get what they need to make em what they need to be. And when their lady luvs are in danger they both quit their "I don't want this bull poo" and take charge of things and they both even earn the respect of Seanchan soldiers. :) Another similarity.
Helen Peters
123. Helen
The quote for female ta'verens was 'none of the main female characters' were. But it needs to be someone we've not seen through Siuan's POV as she can see them. Faile fits the bill. I would have suggested Siuan as well but someone mentioned one of the novices/accepted in Salidar could also see them, which would rule out her.

Tam will end up with.....

wait for it.....

.... Bela (so long as she isn't the dark one)

I've always seen Tam as more RSM type rank. Though do we know the ranking system of the Illianer Companions to decide whether he's non-com or comissioned. The saying goes that the armies are run by the non-coms.
Kurt Lorey
124. Shimrod
I'm with Randalator on this Perrin as a Leader thing.
Blake Engholm
125. UncrownedKing
@120 and others

I like the idea of Faile being Ta'veren. Makes sence now that I think about it. In KoD, she definately has some events go her way.

ex: The house that falls on her doesn't crush her but leaves her with a good view of the sky and a red flag. Which leads her to summoning Morgase to use the OP to levels Morgase herself didn't know was possible. AND THEN have one of her "subjects" be weeping and staring at the house that fell on his Lady, see the flag fluttering wierd and assume that she's alive, get help and rescue her with the help of that creepy Aiel who is in love with her. AND THENNNNN have Perrin find her almost immediately afterwards.......

Well we are most definately in agreement on this topic. Wow revalations today.
Lannis .
126. Lannis
RobM @ 66: The Quiet Man. One of my faves! :)

And it runs rather nicely in sync with our WoT theme of "if you like someone, poke 'em with a stick. And just keep poking."

Re: Tam... um, I think I've said this in an earlier thread... don't get me wrong, I love Tam, but because he's not lined up for a happy ending (no wifey in the future--can't convince me of Morgase, sorry!), I think he's Tarmon Gai'don cannon fodder... he'll have some great moments and die a tragic death. His contribution to the battle has already happened, if you think about it: he was the hand that raised Rand.
Amar Ramraj
127. aiel1219
@123 Helen
Thanks for indirectly commenting on my attempt at humor :) while your's was exponentially more funny... I'll take credit for suggesting the train of thought and the "wait for it", and bask in the reflected glory LOL!!!

I think my big question here would be what did RJ mean by main characters? If he meant RPM nwhat was the other thingy (for rands harem n Nynaeve n Egwene?) *runs for cover after the harem comment*
because if he meant those 8 it could very well be Faile. Or mb even Elaida, I mean sum1 that stupid becoming Amarlyin seat??? Gotta be Ta'veren LOL!!!
B4 u kick down my dumb Elaida theory with "but Siuan didn't c her as Ta'veren" remember that Ta'veren can kick in anytime. and from the way things went in the big coup Siuan probably didn't even see Elaida b4 she was stilled at that time.
Marie Adomako
128. MSedai
Yeah, unfortunately I agree with Lannis @126 re:Tam.
I also think that Tallanvor is cannon fodder, and Morgase doesn't have much more of a role to play other than to appear to Gawyn and go "surprise! I'm alive, now stop being stupid!" At least I really hope that is her role....

"Basically Mat's Leadership = Ta'verenness +dead guys pushing him in the right direction

Perin's Leadership = Ta'verenness + living guys pushing him in the right direction."

Haha , aiel1219, still chuckling...
129. Atara
Where does everyone get the idea that Rand et al. are 19 or so? I thought it was pretty clear when Moiraine came to the Two Rivers that they were all 16, so given the winter they passed after TGH, they should all be 17 now. I seem to recall Ewin Finnagar specifically mentioned as being a couple years younger than Mat and Rand. Am I remembering this incorrectly?
Blake Engholm
130. UncrownedKing
@66, Rob, and Lannis.

The Duke Lives!

Big Jake, Quiet Man, Eldorado,McKlintock are my favorites

Sorry late to the We love John Wayne party
131. wsean
I always thought the big laughter-and-tears moment would be the return of Moiraine. Doesn't she still top his women-I-killed list? And that would explain Min's vision that she's crucial for the last battle.

Or maybe several of the women on the list. Moiraine, Morgase... anyone else still alive who he thinks he killed?
Lannis .
132. Lannis
wsean @ 131: I like your idea about why Moiraine is crucial for TG, though we know Cadsuane has to teach Rand how the whole laughter-and-tears dance.

Cadsuane: Hey Rand, I have a surprise for you. Remember Moiraine?
Rand: You mean the one I killed?
Cadsuane : Well, here she is!
Rand: You're dead.
Moiraine: No, I'm not. You should be happy!
Rand: I was talking about Cadsuane.
Cadsuane: I don't hear laughing or see tears. Hrm...
Alex Johns
133. almuric
@118 Wetlandernw

Many people can be in charge of a squad of people. In a military setting that's actually not that difficult. In the military of today, that job is given to incompetent nitwits all the time. (Not that I'm saying Tam is incompetent.) In the formal structure of an established military, it doesn't take much leadership ability to command a squad of men. We can assume that Tam did a good job - maybe even an excellent job - and maybe he was raised to that level on his merits.

Nonetheless, this ability is not what's required in the Two Rivers right now. There is no established military hierarchy. No overall leader to say, "Here Tam, lead these people." We need a natural, charismatic leader of people. One who's both able to come up with military strategy (at which Tam is almost certainly better than Perrin, right now) and one who's able to rally people around a cause. This latter part Tam is unable to do, for whatever reason. He just doesn't have it in him or else he would have done it instead of hiding in the woods with Abell.

Why didn't Tam and Abell free the Luhanns? They could have gotten a dozen people together to do what Perrin did. They just didn't have the innate belief in themselves that Perrin has. He knows that what he's doing is the right thing. And he's able to convince other people to follow along. Largely because of ta'veren-ness, although to some extent that's really just Jordan's deus-ex-machina as to why people follow the three boys. Otherwise, you'd have a good percentage of people saying, "Eff you, man. You're not the boss of me." As it is, he gets everyone behind him which is just barely enough people to hold off the Trollocs until help arrives. So the pattern needed him to be ta'veren, else he'd be trolloc-food.

Off-topic: 'El Dorado'? Pfft, that's just a cheap remake of 'Rio Bravo'. The original's much better. (Although, tbh, I like both.) Leigh Brackett ftw! And Walter Brennan makes all the difference. His portrayal of 'Stumpy' is mega-awesome.
Shawn Spearman
134. fishes153
wsean @131

Well I guess we could count the Aiel girl he left in Shadar Logoth. We don't know for sure she's dead do we? Maybe when Rand cleansed Saidin and wiped out Shadar Logoth he set her could happen...
Alice Arneson
135. Wetlandernw
129. Atara
Where does everyone get the idea that Rand et al. are 19 or so?

Rand, Mat & Perrin were born in 978 NE, dated accurately by the end of the Aiel war. According to the WoT Chronology, documenting Steven Cooper's incredible efforts researching it, The Eye of the World begins in March 988, making them 20 at the beginning of the series. This point in the reread is mid-June, 999, so at this point they are 21.

Note that I, at least, don't know for sure what time of year the boys were born, just that all three were within about a two-week time frame, and Gitara's Foretelling says "he lies in the snow..." (New Spring, Ch 2) So if they were born in January/February/March, they'd be the ages I stated. If the snow was late in the year, birthdays October/November/December, they would be 19 at the beginning and 20 now.

Re: Ewin Finngar, the only info about age difference is "The years separating Rand and Mat from Ewin, only fourteen, were usually more than enough for them to give short shrift to anything he had to say." (TEotW, Ch. 2)
136. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Shadow_Jak @83
Errr... Perrin didn't go home to accept responsibility. He went home to accept blame. Responsibility goes a bit further than being willing to die. It sounds cliched but dying is the easy way out. That he did do a turnaround and actually stumbled on the correct course of action doesn't change the fact that his original intention was simply to die.

Helen @123
The title of the commander of the Companions of Illian is First Captain. Tam Al'Thor was second captain. Admittedly this still leaves a lot of room depending on the actual rank structure of the Companions. He could be anything from Second in command to commander of a second reinforcement unit to just head of the headquarters staff(not likely if he was a blademaster).

Atara @130
I thought so too. Until I read on the timeline that the Aiel War (When Rand was born) was exactly 20 years ago. Not around 20 years ago. That makes them 19 if you start at a part of the year before their birthdays coinciding with the anniversary of the Bloodsnow when the last battle of the Aiel War was fought on Tar Valon.

Re Tam/Morgase:
While I subscribe to the Tam met Morgase before and he is where Morgase heard Two Rivers speech. I draw the line at them end up together in the end. There is theory and there is wishful thinking. Tam being one of a very rare breed who ventured out of the Two Rivers to gain a high rank in a foreign army would support his speaking his Two Rivers accent somewhere within hearing distance of Morgase. Them knowing each other well enough to end up together in the end (somehow dispatching of Tallanvor along the way, easier said than done considering how much the poor man has already been through) is just plain wishful thinking.
Ellie Virgo
137. Egglie
"we know Cadsuane has to teach Rand how the whole laughter-and-tears dance."

I was trying to hold this in but, since you brought it up. . .

Actually I don't think that we do know this. We know that Cadsuane has to teach Rand and all the Asha'man something that they will not like learning from her (mins viewing)

We also know that Cadsuane and Sorilea agreed that they will work together to teach Rand laughter and tears again and that they both agree that he needs to be strong not hard. However, it is strongly implied in Cadsuane's POV that this is merely a step along the way to her ultimate goal. Caddie and Sorilea agree to be "bound as one" to teach him laughter and tears but Cadsuane thinks to herself that targets even a hand apart might not be at all alike.

I think we all tend to assume that what Rand and the Asha'man must learn form Cadsuane is the same thing that she is trying to teach him but I am not sure that it has to be the case.

Now feel free to find quotes that prove me wrong:-) I also invite suggestions on what she must teach him if it is not laughter and tears - I haven't a clue.
Kurt Lorey
138. Shimrod
It's some crazed philosophy where many women assume that a widower needs to remarry for some reason.
sandi vogel
139. sinfulcashew
Sure wish I could add to the whole discussion, but everyone has covered it all.
If I think of something, then on down the line, someone else mentions it!

Oh well,
I always rooted for Morgase and Talanvor,

and someone mentioned that Perrin did something without Tavereness. I think that is a no no.
All the boys are Taveren and that would preclude any plainness(? being a part of it, IMHO!
I got tired of the Perrin chasing Faile parts the first time through, but came to appreciate more of it in later reads. Galina me off royally.

My favorite Perrin scene still to come up.
Kurt Lorey
140. Shimrod
Liah remained behind in Shadar Logoth.

1) Pretty sure Mashadar touched her. If touched, she's dead. If not?

2) Shadar Logoth is now gone. Liah couldn't/wouldn't leave. Liah is dead.

edit: Wiki says Rand balefired her so she wouldn't suffer.
j p
141. sps49
re 135 Wetlander-

Half of 21 is 10 1/2,
add 7 gives 17 1/2,

so Faile is old enough for Perrin!

Richard Fife
142. R.Fife
Honestly, while I think Morgase and Tallanvor will end up together, that relationship annoys me. In partic, I think Tallanvor is a bloody idiot. He is always acting like he is all angry and peeved off with Morgase, but still is all loyal/in love with her. WTH? I don't care how much I "loved" or was "loyal" to a person, they treat me like dirt like Morgase treats Tallanvor, and I'd drop her ass on the road and be on my way. Or perhaps grab her by the scuff of the neck and... *ducks*

That's just me.
Michael Catapano
143. hoping
Cadusuane seems to know a lot about male channelers from her experience. Maybe she will tell them how to integrate dual personalities. Just because Graendal and aol people usually weren't successful, doesn't mean 'the primitives of this age,' as one forsaken put it, might not figure it out. No book support for this. Maybe wishful thinking.
Galen Brinn
144. GatheringStorm
Lannis @ 126,

Wow. Regarding Tam, you are one dark and depressing person. ;)

You are hereby renamed Betrayer-of-Hopes-for-Good-Characters.
Kurt Lorey
145. Shimrod
Well, R.Fife. Some guys just aren't as smart as you.

Some guys or girls are in love with the idea/ideal of a person, and will do almost anything in an attempt to win that idea/ideal.

What will be intersting to watch is whether Tallanvor learns what Morgase is (or isn't), and can accept it, or not.

And, in watching Morgase learn (or not) that loyalty and love aren't things to casually discard or take for granted.

Thank goodness Lini is along, else the Morgase/Tallanvor relationship would never get off the ground. As it is, it still might not.
Captain Hammer
146. Randalator
Shimrod @140

You're right, Liah was touched by Mashadar. That alone can ruin your day quite thoroughly. But being balefired by Rand on top of that makes for serious deadity...deadishness...err...two for the price of one is all I'm saying...

sps49 @141

Ewin Finngar is 14 in 998 NE (TEotW), Faile is the same age as Ewin which makes her 15 or possibly 16 in late 999 NE (LoC, Prologue).

Richard Fife
147. R.Fife
Ya know, we all get on Perrin for not being able to tell age (the discreditation of him thinking she looked about his age or a bit younger), but we trust Faile to be able to tell someone's age on the dime at a glance? As I also recall, Ewin is commented as looking markedly older, enough that Perrin does a double-take on seeing him. Perhaps Faile thinks Ewin is older than he really is when she thinks herself the same age as he is.

@Shimrod: well, I shall take my superior intellect and wag a "told ya so" finger at Tallanvor regardless. (Does not do well with stupid people, professional hazard of being Tech Support.)
Richard Fife
148. R.Fife
from enc-wot: has changed so much Perrin barely recognizes him. He is much taller and lean-faced with broad shoulders and a startlingly deep voice. (TSR,Ch43)
Captain Hammer
149. Randalator

Faile is quite specific ("Dav and Elam were as old as Perrin, and Ewin was her own age."), as opposed to Perrin ("She was young — no older than he was, perhaps").

That looks more like knowing than guessing on Faile's part...
Richard Fife
150. R.Fife
The part of me that wants Faile to be at least 17, maybe 18 will continue to believe she was just guessing.

I deny your reality and substitute my own!
151. RobMRobM
Sorry to have stirred pot again on Tam-Morgase but there is it. Re an earlier comment (too lazy to look), no I don't think Morgase became familar with Tam's speech through a close relationship otherwise (as you said) she would have remembered the last name. I do think that Tam had some sort of speaking role in or near the castle while an officer with the Companions and Morgase picked up on it. She may have even thought him to be handsome....

Re them getting together, it's the Wheel of Time, baby. First chapter, one of key themes is Tam as an eligible bachelor. Given Rand's unique role, he is not going back to TR after TG so Tam will be lonely (assuming he doesn't become fodder, of course) so what is better for RJ to have planned to have Tam find a partner at the end of the books, thereby closing the circle. If you accept the logic, which is plausible, the question becomes who will fit the bill? Morgase sure does (redhead, possibly some form of past history which will come to light, needs someone who will love her as a woman rather than as a queen, proximity in Perrin's camp). I can't think of anyone else in Perrin's camp that will have as satisfying conclusion to the story. As R.Fife pointed out, Morgase and Tallanvor have problems on both sides - not a happy fit. Tallanvor can go out in a blaze of glory and voila, true wuv can blossom and Rand and the harem can save on babysitting for the grandkids....

If you put aside proximity to Perrin, I could see other fun candidates for a fix up (Leane, Selucia) but they don't quite fit the bill. So, call me a Tam-Morgase "shipper."

Deborah Jones
152. NanaD
Mr. Fife,

Please check the facts of the characters ages in wotfaq or wotmaina.

Faile is six years younger than Perrin. So is Ewin.

As you should know boys change a lot between 14 and 16.
153. wsean
wotfaq ain't necessarily the facts. It's speculation based on the text. All R.Fife is saying is that if Perrin assumes incorrectly that Faile is his age, how do we know Faile isn't assuming incorrectly that Ewin is her age?

It's a reasonable question. We know that Faile is at least somewhat younger than Perrin. We don't know for sure that she's actually Ewin's age.
Blake Engholm
154. UncrownedKing
Faile is 100 years old and apart the Kin. There! Let the truth set you free
Sydo Zandstra
155. Fiddler

Honestly, while I think Morgase and Tallanvor will end up together, that relationship annoys me. In partic, I think Tallanvor is a bloody idiot. He is always acting like he is all angry and peeved off with Morgase, but still is all loyal/in love with her. WTH? I don't care how much I "loved" or was "loyal" to a person, they treat me like dirt like Morgase treats Tallanvor, and I'd drop her ass on the road and be on my way. Or perhaps grab her by the scuff of the neck and... *ducks*

Because Tallanvor reswore a heavy oath to serve his Queen Morgase after Gaebril/Rahvin made the guards swear a new oath, probably. I recall Lini telling Morgase about this, before they fled Caemlyn.

Also, Morgase abdicated by saying the words where nobody could hear them, when she was at Whitecloaks' Central after the Seanchan captured it (tCoS, ch 26, The Irrevocable Words). And the whole Maighdin stuff was so that Perrin wouldn't learn who she was. So the others don't know about Morgase stepping down as Queen (unless I missed a part where she told them; I'm in LoC now in my reread).

This would make Morgase still be his Queen, to who he swore a heavy Oath to serve, in Tallanvor's mind. He may be annoyed by her, while in love with her at the same time, but he's honour bound to serve.
156. Freelancer

You mean the marriage bed of Sean and Mary Kate. Oh, but we shouldn't mention that movie here, because Sean S****s Mary Kate when she gets out of line.


Your first paragraph there is right on. Perrin doesn't WANT to lead anyone. He just wants to get things done. Now, to dig deeper, since he's been out of EF for over a year, and his family is gone, he's pretty much lost any attachments to how everyday life in the village is going. This leaves him unconflicted and able to see clearly HOW to get things done, and so he sets out to do the tasks he believes need doing.

The truth is, that's about all that's needed to start being a leader, whether you like it or not. Add all the other stuff that's been ground 'round for the last couple of posts, a little water, and voila, instant Lord-of-the-Land. You just want to be a blacksmith? Tough toenails, ta'veren. You're IT!


No cookie for you! Loony...

@110, 111, 112

I think it's worth adding that once Tam mentioned to Perrin that Taim called Rand the Dragon Reborn, clearly hoping for a denial or something other than a confirmation, Perrin's response is, "Nothing to be done about it now". That line blew me away the first time through. Perrin's original personality would have been embarassed for Tam, he would have stammered and finally said, "Yes sir, it seems he is". Now it's more like, "So what, we have things to do today, let's focus on that, shall we?". Brrr...


You're exactly right, that what Caduane/Sorilea each intends toward Rand, and what Min's vision are about, could be wildly different. So far, the available information puts both thoughts on the same track, and since RJ is not sneaky at all, it must mean the same thing. :-{0>


I deny your reality and substitute my own!
This, unfortunately, is how the vast majority of Tech Support do their job, with commensurate results.
No, that can't be what's happening, you aren't following my script! What's really wrong is all your fault. Thank you, now pay the bill.
But of course, go ahead and continue to fail to do well with "Stupid People", aka your clients. Can you tell I love Tech Support? ::Returns to his job of training technical field service engineers::
Alice Arneson
157. Wetlandernw
Completely irrelevant to anything being discussed, but here's a suggestion. For those of you who haven't done it yet, I'd recommend that next time you need a WoT fix and Leigh's new post isn't coming for a while, get hooked into the WoTFAQ and WoT Encyclopedia. They are compilations of a whole lot of effort by a whole lot of people to sort this stuff out. They have taken the books, comments at book signings, RJ's blog, all sources they could find that were validated by RJ in some way, and put it together as best they could without having RJ's notes. In some cases they include speculation and theory, but they're pretty good about quoting sources so you can decide for yourself if their conclusions are valid. In any case, if you're at all like me, they put together stuff you haven't got the time to sort for yourself, and in the process point out links and conclusions you might never have reached just from your own reading.

I realize that some of the folks here practically have them memorized, and some were involved in putting them together, but for those newer to the on-line WoT community they can provide a lot of great info. There are others (dragonmount, wotmania, tarvalon) that you might enjoy, but those two are the best-organized, most accessible compilations I've seen yet. Oh, and for sequence of events, Steven Cooper (as mentioned above) did an amazing WoT Chronology.
158. PieterT
In RJ's defence, I agree with @62 Sethric and @73 Freelancer. This type of axe is not intended to chop up wood.
But even a wood axe destroys trees in my opinion, you have to use other tools to create something useful of the wood, other than smaller logs to burn.
Galen Brinn
159. GatheringStorm
I was always kind of pissed that Perrin didn't relay the information about Rand being The Dragon Reborn (to Tam, at least). So when Tam hears about it, it's 3rd party and has to be very shocking. Then when Perrin finally does acknowledge the facts to Tam it's in such a way that you almost want to slap the snot out of him. Perrin's personality has gone so far over the edge over FAIL (TM) having been kidnapped that he loses sight of everything else.

I'm not trying to take away from the fact that his wife is being held as a slave (lords know how I'd feel in that situation), but wow...really?
160. RobMRobM
@159. Perrin hinted earlier in TSR (Tam: the AS let slip that the boys were ta'veren. How has it affected you. Perrin: I haven't seen anything happen to Mat or me....) Tam could have followed up to get the truth and didn't. Perrin left Rand to make his own disclosure. And, just before the battle of Malden, I thought Perrin's comment was spot on. There really was nothing for Tam (or Perrin) to do about it.

@156. I'm glad you decided to stick around. You're too much.

Alice Arneson
161. Wetlandernw
I'm not trying to take away from the fact that his wife is being held as a slave (lords know how I'd feel in that situation), but wow...really?

So think really hard about how you'd feel if your wife was kidnapped and made a slave. And it goes on for a couple of months, and you're trying to figure out what to do about it. You'd gladly (well, I don't know about you, but Perrin would) give your life in exchange for hers, but you know her captors wouldn't make that exchange, and they aren't interested in ransom. The rest of the world is making demands on you, and you know they are important, but right here and now, you're up to your knees in snow and your wife is being held just out of reach. You don't have the luxury of the readers, switching to another story line for a couple chapters because other important things are happening elsewhere. You are stuck there trying to figure out how to rescue your wife, unless you're willing to abandon her to go off and take care of other stuff. Remember, if you go somewhere to take care of other things, by the time you get back your wife and her captors (all umpty-thousand of them) may have gone somewhere else and you'll have to search for them all over again. Also remember that you never intended it to last for a couple of months. Every day you've been hoping: first just to find her, then to find a way to get her out, hopefully today, maybe tomorrow.

Hey, folks, I realize that for us it keeps interrupting the other cool stuff with this stuck-in-the-mire going-spare-about-his-wife story line, but I honestly don't see how you can be so critical of Perrin if you think about it for more than 3 seconds. Yeah, "wow...really?"
Kurt Lorey
162. Shimrod
@156 Freelancer.

There went your chance of getting your cupholder fixed.
Jay Dauro
163. J.Dauro
Fiddler @155

In TPoD Chapter 8 we learn that Lini told Tallanvor about Morgase abdicating. So he knows she is no longer his queen. And as I remember, this gives him hope.
Chiara Elvira
164. elvyelvy
Faile's age is a big issue round here. So I will drop my 2.5 cents.
1 cent)I have not read anything in WoT that makes me think there is one single relationship – marriage –affair involving an adult and a person not considered adult. (If I missed it please point it out.) Furthermore I can’t think that RJ put one such relationship on purpose in his books, but a slight age miscalculation across the books might have happened. With so many characters events and details to keep track of, this would be hardly surprising.

2 cents)we have the "infamous" passages about her age (TDR and Loc-Prologue)that caused all the turmoil

1/2 cent) I can't recall anybody pointing out a fact: in ch 53 Perrin and Faile get married before Daise Congar, Marin al'Vere, Alsbet Luhhan , Neysa Ayellin of the Women’s Circle, and that would not have been possible if they had not considered her of marriageable age. And the Women's Circle have the final sy in this.

extra coin for free) in LoC (ch 46) Faile's parents learn of her marriage, and do not seem particularly surprised (incidentally Perrin thinks that “Maybe he had married into a family where everyone was mad.”).
Apparently Deira had spanked Faile in the past, as Bashere says that “They always did get a little carried away when they argued, and Zarine's too big now for Deira to put an end to it by spanking her.” (hahaaaa- Randland's favourite pastime again)
A bit later we learn that Faile and the mother argued and each slapped the other’s face, but in the end Bashere cuts her wife short remarking that “ Since you've obviously decided Zarine ... Faile ... is no longer a child, I think Perrin will do well enough.”

So Women's Circle and Deira Bashere can't be wrong on this.

*ducks and thinks she has stirred an anthill*
Alice Arneson
165. Wetlandernw
elvyelvy @164

No anthills here! I totally agree, and can't think how I never got around to mentioning that. In my defense, my reason for pointing out Faile's age has always been in HER defense: you can't expect a 15-year-old to act like a woman twice her age. She ain't there yet. That was never to say she's too young for Perrin. In a culture like this, 15 or 16 is perfectly marriageable, depending on the individual's maturity (or perceived maturity). So the Women's Circle in EF obviously considered her ready for marriage, or they would not have done it. Whether their standards would (in abstract) match those of Saldaea doesn't really matter, since everything took place in their jurisdiction. And as you say, her PARENTS agree that she's old enough - at least enough not to declare her marriage void.

By the standards and relative maturity of 15-year olds in OUR culture, I only know a few that I would consider "old enough". But in Randland, more was expected of kids (in a practical manner) and they grew up younger.

Now I'll duck with you.
Sydo Zandstra
166. Fiddler

See? I forgot something again. Yay for rereads, even after 16 years... ;)

However, where in the Morgase-Tallanvor storyline did this happen? This seems to be a breaking point, and the stuff R.Five is basing his view upon could be before that...
Chiara Elvira
167. elvyelvy
*sighs relieved*
Well, I certainly was not of marriageable anything at twenty, let alone at 15, and I don't know one single person who would in our present culture, where at 30 a man is too young to marry (no kidding, I heard mothers say so). But we are dealing with a culture that reminds a lot a mixture of medieval and renaissance, and back then people had to grow faster, or they wouldn't grow at all.
168. Freelancer
Agreed, Elvy. Was a time young folks were expected to earn their keep before they were 13, and even "uneducated" teenagers were far more educated than a sad majority of today's young people.

Certainly knowledge doesn't equal wisdom, but another major difference from today's culture was the inherent respect for, and willingness to learn from, one's elders. Wisdom is not innate, it must be nurtured and grown, and without an existing source of valid wisdom that is nearly impossible to achieve. So a 16 year old from two centuries ago would be amazed at the ignorance, inattentiveness, and insolence of many of today's 16 year olds, who have the advantage of much of the world's learning at their very fingertips.
169. CalaLily
@Freelancer: I would even venture to say that 16 year-olds from 200 years ago were far more wiser than 16 year-olds of today.

On Faile's age: I have absolutely no problem with her being married at 15/16. In fact, it explains much of her sometimes childish behavior. For all her maturity, she still is very young. However, she was to be her father's heir since her older brothers died. That's a TON of responsibility, one I'm sure she was well-schooled in before she ran away to become a Hunter. If any of the glimpse of the marriage culture we get from Ethenielle in PoD is an indication, she would be married to another powerful Borderland house and expected to keep strong ties to her family. She would be expected to play Daes Dae'mar skillfully and to the advantage of her husband and House. Not to mention run the numerous estates that kept her House running financially.

Remember, Nynaeve was allowed to braid her hair at 16 and Egwene was allowed to at 17. Faile is a practical young woman well able to take care of herself Even if by today's standards she is most definitely not an adult, I think people would treat her as one. She would probably be one of those people where 18 was just a formality, as it were.

Now, that doesn't mean I wouldn't like to see her end up some Wise One's apprentice She's still young enough to have that "I know everything and you're wrong" attitude. :) But I think that would build her character, not break her down. I like Faile, flaws and all.
170. Aegnor
As an aside, I just finished Mistborn today, and after reading it and Elantris I am even more excited about the upcoming book. The climax of that book really was very good. Kelsier's fight scene and confrontation was absolutely incredible.
Luke M
171. lmelior
Wetlandernw @157

Seconded. There is a ton of great info in those links, and anyone here who hasn't bookmarked them would do themselves a favor to do so now. I'd also recommend you just do some googling around, for instance, check out this Wikipedia entry. A lot of this info is also in the WoTFAQ, but you can get more in depth with it on Wikipedia by following the related links.

I also refer to the wotmania FAQ just as often as the others, as I find it attributes sources just as well and there are very interesting topics, like the table of relative strength in saidar. I thought it had an approximate comparison with men too, but perhaps I stumbled upon that elsewhere. It used numbers with Rand at 100, anybody know what I'm talking about?
Alice Arneson
172. Wetlandernw
Hey, you learn something new every day if you're not careful! I haven't looked at wotmania very extensively, since I find the home page to be badly designed and generally irritating. But I had never checked out their FAQ. Looks like it might be worth a read. Thanks, lmelior.
Captain Hammer
173. Randalator
R.Fife @150

The part of me that wants Faile to be at least 17, maybe 18 will continue to believe she was just guessing.

I deny your reality and substitute my own!

I know what you did there. You said "deny" instead of "reject" so that Adam Savage can't sue you for copyright infringement. Sneaky.

I love that line and quote it pretty much on a daily basis...
174. ValanVinyl
@ 170 Aegnor
Just wait til you read Warbreaker. That book blew me away. I am 100 percent confident BS can finish this series in not only a capable manner, but in a badass one as well.

As far as Faile age is concerned I am definately in the camp that age is a formality and not an accurate measure of maturity. Especially today. That - maybe - doesn't begin to happen until you turn 20, in most cases (not mine of course.)

And full agreement with Wetalndernw @ 161 and though it sounds total cliche - love sometimes beats the world on a balance scale.
Jay Dauro
175. J.Dauro
Fiddler @166

This is just after Morgase et al have been rescued by Perrin, returned to the camp, and bedded down for the night (when we find out about it, we do not know exactly when Lini told him.)

And his line:

"... Once there was a soldier loved a queen from afar, knowing it was hopeless, knowing he could never dare speak. Now the queen is gone, and only a woman remains, and I hope. I burn with hope!"

Aegenor @170

If you have just finished Mistborn 1, keep going. 2 & 3 are outstanding. After you finish, you may want to read Brandon's annotations on his website.

He provides an insight into how the story developed and what he is trying to do for each chapter. (So far he has them for Elantris, and Mistborn 1 & 2.) I really hope we get annotations for TGS and the others. It would be great to see how he worked through the different sorts of problems he is having doing AMOL. (And I plan to get Warbreaker as soon as it is published. OK, recorded, since I usually do these on audiobooks. BTW Michael Kramer, who reads the male POVs on WOT, also does Mistborn, and a very good job of them. I have really found that listening helps me slow down and get more from the stories.)

But after reading his published works, I am really expecting great things in November.
176. Wolfmage
“Remember Alliandre says he was the most skilled Daes Daemar player she had met.”

But Alliandre’s opinion is essentially as flawed as the Seanchan Banner General’s when Perrin mentions Suroth’s first name trying to acquire the folkroot. In that scene, Tylee mistakes Perrin’s ignorance at Seanchan custom for a calculated risk that the official would believe he was Suroth’s lover. In both cases, the author of the opinion is just elevating Perrin’s skill on an assumption that Perrin’s effect on those around him is based on conscious skill and political deftness. But I don’t think that is ever demonstrated that well as opposed to being forced by her dialogue remark.

Perrin has shown capacity to read between the lines at times, sure, like his recognition of the death threat against Colavaere, but that wasn't rocket science. We don’t have a lot of evidence for him being any great hand at the Great Game. IMO Alliandre’s opinion is pretty baseless.

I mean Perrin's biggest champion Faile herself thinks that other people see guile in Perrin when it is mainly a misreading of his forthright integrity and force of personality. I’m not trying to diminish Perrin, I do think he has leadership skills, but I really think Jordan at times is a little clumsy in forcing the reader to acknowledge stuff with hyperbolic dialogue, rather than actually demonstrating it. Personally, I put more faith in things shown rather than told, and if it must be told, then weight should be accorded to characters who are more formidable than Alliandre for example.

I think we compare and contrast Matt’s effect on people to Perrin's, and he certainly benefits from luck if anyone does. Take his infamous confrontation with the Seafolk - he does let his temper blossom there, but in contrast he at least takes a conscious calculated risk to bully the Seafolk and use his ta'verenness against her. He continually see underlying.

If Perrin didn't have his super smell to Deux Ex determine the emotions of people in real-time, he would seriously handicapped by his slow thinking.
Richard Fife
177. R.Fife
NanaD@152 I audible said ow when reading that. I know what WoTFAQ and the chonology say, and, as was said a post later, my arguement was they were falsely assuming Faile's mental statement of being the same age as Ewin is unreliable narration because Ewin hit his growth spurts early and looks older than he is.

And I don't know about puberty. I erupted fully formed from my mom like a halfman. No awkward teenage years, yay. Now if only I could find some eyes.

Freelancer @ 156: actually, I'm the guy they call when the monkeys with scripts can't fix it. Tier2/3 support. I'm the one that actually does fix the broken "cup holder" or the laptop they claim to have not touched, even though it is soak and filled with sand. I am actually typically pretty nice to my users, but sometimes they make my blood boil, just like I am sure I make my mechanic's blood boil sometimes when he sees how I treat my car.

And, in non-WoT news and to make this completely off topic: I saw the 7pm EST showing of Star Trek tonight. It rocks.
178. ValanVinyl
You can actually already download Warbreaker in PDF format @ for free if you're wanting to read sooner than mid June. I actually pre-ordered the hardback anyway. Its worth every cent and more.

I really wonder what will happen when Morgase is revealed... Perrin will have two Queens in service to him and actually know! (Yeah I know she abdicated, but she's still a Queen in self-imposed exile in my book)
(Thats gotta be a real mindf*ck for somebody that doesn't care to lead anything)

All this talk of later events its making my eyes itch. MAS WHEEL OF TIME POR FAVOR! ANDALE!

i'd think I'd go crazy without these re-read posts in the meantime Leigh. Did this really just start this year...
Chris Hall
179. bookwormchris
Some good stuff about Faile's age in here. Not too sorry I brought that up.

It has been ages since I read through many of the WoT info sites. Probably not since high school. (Which was only 3-4 years ago, although the reading of those sites would have occurred closer to 5-7 years ago. I still miss Silklantern, if anyone knows what happened to that.)

I've read Elantris and the Mistborn Series (Mistborn Series first). Warbreaker was/is online, but I'm waiting until the physical book comes out. I have no doubts that Brandon Sanderson will do these last books justice. The waiting is killing me though.
Eugenie Delaney
180. EmpressMaude

I haven't checked the wotmania FAQ in years since it was revealed that they plagiarized the whole WOTFAQ.

I shall go peruse now. Hopefully they've learned the art of citation and fair use.
j p
181. sps49
@177 R.Fife:

So you are the one who I can't get to about the lines on my laptop display....

I am relieved at someone's opinion on Star Trek. All I've heard so far is Chris Pine saying it has great special effects and action sequences; hearing that worried me.
182. toddywatts
Someone touched on Luc's claim to the throne of Andor. I don't know if I missed a follow up in the comments, but I was thinking, maybe Taringail wasn't the first person to consider killing off the rightful ruler and trying to hold the throne. Luc might have been bitter about his sister's right to the throne all along. Sheer speculation, as far as I know, but you never know.

I don't think Perrin has made such a mess of things. I can't imagine anyone leaving their spouse a captive because the world needs them to move on. On the other hand, if Perrin has to be present for Tarmon Gaidon, him being taveren and all, maybe Tarmon Gaidon has to wait on his schedule.

One of the biggest themes in the series is misunderstandings/miscommunication. Perrin's talk with Alliandre is very much like Rand's experience in Cairhien. The more he protests that he's not doing anything, the more people are certain he's up to something.

And, can I just say how surprised I was to remember that Aram is dead? I can't believe I forgot that. It must be that my hatred for him is so strong that I wasn't willing to give it up.
Andrew Lovsness
183. drewlovs
I'm a big fan of Band of Brothers, which is about Easy company, 101st division. They based the entire miniseries on actual interviews with the veterans, which made for ultimate realism. They even started each episode with bits and pieces of those interviews.

What struck me the most about this was, at one point at the end of the series when you see which veteran is which (you obviously know which actor is portraying what GI, but they don't give names to the actual veterans until the end); it fits in with Leigh's point.

One of the Vet's sons did not know that his father even FOUGHT in WWII. Now, these were the guys who defended Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge, and the man never even mentioned that he was there to his family. In fact, many of the families commented that they might have known that their patriarch was in WWII, but always assumed that he never did anything eventful. True veterans of bloody wars tend not to talk about them afterwards; in order to fit back into society, they cannot.

My father was a Veit Nam vet... same thing. He was a medic on the helicopters that jordan used to fly; not the same one, obviously, but you get the idea. I found that out last year, and I'm 38.
184. Freelancer
Both of my father's brothers were aboard the same ship in the Pacific in WWII, didn't know it for almost two months. One being an aircraft maintenance officer, the other an operations officer. The joke that they found out by literally running into each other at a ladder, one going up the other down, is just about all they'd say of their service in the war.

Much later, I discovered a small jewelry box that didn't have jewelry in it, but a large, very misshapen bullet. I finally got him to say it was from a Japanese aircraft, and had gone through his leg, in what turned out to be a "test attack". What followed was a massive raid, including torpedoes, bombs, and kamikaze attacks that ended up forcing the abandonment of the USS Hornet, which was sunk the following day.

He had never told anybody but his brothers and sisters about it. Not his wife or children. He only told me because I was already in the Navy, and it seemed to him appropriate. Even so, he was clearly pained to bring up anything from that time.

(Now to slip on topic...)
So the idea that Tam, returning to the Two Rivers and picking up life as a farmer, isn't interesting in bragging about his wartime exploits, is perfectly realistic to me. In fact, the point at which I knew I was going to be hooked on TEotW:
"I got it a long time ago," Tam said "a long way from here. And I paid entirely too much; two coppers is too much for one of these. Your mother didn't approve, but she was always wiser than I. I was young then, and it seemed worth the price at the time. She always wanted me to get rid of it, and more than once I've thought she was right, that I should just give it away."

Even before Lan explains the herons, you just know that Tam had been in combat, with that melancholy line. It felt so much like my uncle.
185. drewoftherushes
This is related to nothing that's been said here (I think) but I'm saying it here in the hopes that someone will do something.

Tor, Brandon Sanderson needs a new website.

The one he has now looks like a middle school fantasy nerd designed it. For all the great things Brandon has to say, especially on his blog but including hosting his Warbreaker website and selling his own stuff, maybe you should pony up and put a professional on the case.

Please? For our sake, and his.
186. Freelancer
Pssst, drewoftherushes, over here where nobody can hear you...

Brandon's brother manages his site, and he seems to like it as is. ::/whisper::

Just saying.
Ofer Nave
187. odigity
RJ's world has it right on the age thing - more than ours, anyway. Ours is the fucked up insane one. 18 is ridiculous. If you want to know why teenagers act like teenagers, it's because they are adults forced to act like children for six extra years.

This arrested development period is a new thing, history-wise, and it's unimaginably destructive. We would be wise to reconsider it.

Anyone remember that ST:TNG episode where the twelve year old kid was complaining to his dad about having to learn calculus? That always made me smile.
188. Shadow_Jak
Xandar01 @ 84
What an interesting thought... What if was Rand or Mat that had gone back to TR?

Under the circumstances, I can't see how that would ever have worked. It was difficult enough for Perrin, taking the lead before Tam and Abel. Think how much harder it would have been for Mat or Rand to take the lead over their own fathers! (And of course, Mat's reputation would likely have been impossible to overcome!)

Randalator @85
What happens in the Two Rivers is only ta'veren at work. What he does there almost anyone could have done. Tam, Abell, Bran...the only thing that prevents them from doing so ist the lack of ta'veren to drive the stubborn duopotamians towards their leadership.
"the only thing that prevents them from doing it...", is that they cannot. Only Perrin. Not Tam. Not Abel. Not Bran. And they were smart enough to realize it. That's why the supported Perrin. He was already uniting the Two River, almost without trying.

Also Rand and Mat accept their responsibilities. Perrin does not. By Winter's Heart Perrin basically says "Screw the World. I want Faile back. Let the Shadow win for all I care!" and completely abandons his duty to the world. Which will have dire consequences.

As I understand it, Perrin's job was to stop the Profit's deprecations in Ghealdan and to assure the Queen of his support. Looks to me like he is well on his way to accomplishing both. Not to mention putting finish to the Shaido. True, it took a little longer than he thought, but 100,000 Assorted Shaido are a little hard to work around.
Besides, Rand would not likely have been too pleased to have Perrin leave the Queen of Ghealdan and the daughter of his Marshal General in captivity.
Kurt Lorey
189. Shimrod
For those who might wonder why some loved ones never talk about their war experiences, I submit the following excerpt from the single time my grandfather did so. He had served with the 1st Infantry Division in the AEF during WWI, volunteering early and deploying overseas with the first elements of the American forces. Although he never served in a Combat Arm, he did serve in Combat Support which was often right behind the front lines. During his time as a truck driver, he had to serve as an auxiliary ambulance for Graves Registration. Everyone, including the drivers, had to pitch in to load the dead onto the trucks, and I'm sure that he saw things that a farm boy from Indiana had never before dreamed of, and would never want to again.

"War does something to a person. We were scared, but we had to develop a numbness and an unfeeling attitude toward it all. Otherwise, we would have lost our minds...To see blood and carnage everywhere as men, horses, and mules are blown to bits developed in us a certain savagery and hate that pushed us on toward a terrible enemy with a willingness to see him destroyed...(But) before I reached home, I decided that I must clear my mind of all the terrible experiences of the past two years, as much as possible. It would not be right to make my family and friends sad and uncomfortable by inflicting upon them the horrors in which they had no part. Now, I was home with the expectations of building a new and better life. (After marrying my grandmother) Her love and the home we established helped me to forget the horrors of war. Soon I began to collect the bits and pieces of the two years of war and hide them away in a hidden corner of my mind."

As far as I can tell, he never spoke of the war to his three children or any of his grandchildren, and the only reason I can give you the preceding quote was because my grandmother made him fill out a survey send to WWI veterans by the US Army's historical branch. Still, I wasn't provided a copy until after his death, which I can only presume was a precondition he had set upon my grandmother. He did keep a uniform neatly folded in an old trunk in the attic all those years, which is apparently what he did with his memories as best he could.
Ofer Nave
190. odigity
I agree that it's natural to not want to talk about it, and that it's an effective survival mechanism...

...for the individual. It would be better for everyone as a whole, though, if veterans did share the horrors of war with others. Between the censorship in the media, and the self-silencing of veterans, militaries are able to slaughter humans on a massive scale elsewhere, while at home, we barely even notice. It feels unreal and bloodless.

That needs to change if we are ever to do away with war. If every person coming back from deployment told everyone they met exactly what they just experienced, war would be a much tougher sell.

Individuals and societies always pay the price for their unwillingness to process reality.
191. RobMRobM
re @188 and the anti-Perrin quote within it. Disagree strongly that Perrin was disregarding responsibilities while trying to save Faile.

His mission was to limit Masema's destabilizing depredations in the southwest. Bringing Masema along with thousands of his followers did that, albeit not per the envisioned plan. When the Shaido entered (dun, dun, dun), he had to get her back and destroy the Shaido for the simple reasons that (1) 100,000 Shaido would cause more trouble than Masema ever dreamed of and (2) having Queen A captive would be destabilizing. He then formulates the plan that rescues the hostages, largely destroys the Shaido and, at the same time, largely destroys the bulk of Masema's forces. Hardly a dereliction of duty.

192. Planeswalker
@185 & @186
Very funny! The site is good as it is. Of course, it can be better. But generally, its ok. :)

It's kinda sad anyway. The ones who wanted the war are never in the frontlines. Those who were volunteered "forced" into the frontlines were those that didn't want the war. Selfishness and Pride and Greed and all those bad things create war... So sad, they all and still exist. Those true vets never talk about their experiences because they were horrible. How can one be so proud of killing another human?
Kurt Lorey
193. Shimrod
I agree that "war" should be a tougher sell. Unfortunately, I cannot see being able to doing away with war until the impetus for one human being to commit violence upon another disappears.

I also agree that individuals should be able to articulate their experiences without fear. Unlike my grandfather, I have known many others who have not been able to compartmentalize their memories, and who subsequently were unable to effectively re-integrate back into society.

Cultures and individuals differ of course, but in much of American society, people are not prepared for what can become required of them in war.

Sometimes, in my opinion, war is still necessary. But, if people knew more about what war can actually entail for some, they might less likely to invoke it so easily.

Back on topic...

Sorry Rob, but Perrin was all about getting Faile back. EVERYTHING else was subsidiary. I think I remember him thinking about making a deal with the DO if it would help (Masema?).
Deborah Jones
194. NanaD
The faq's may not be complete but they are what we have to work with. I for one enjoy reading them.

I agree age is not as important as experience and wisdom. Most of the teens that I know can't wash their own clothes much less balance a checkbook.

As to the Women's circle thinking Faile old enough to marry, I think Faile may have given them the impression that she and Perrin had been doing more than just traveling together.

And didn't Bashere say something grandchildren?
195. drewoftherushes

Maybe Brandon's brother needs to take up a new career.

Don't get me wrong, it's well organized, it's just aesthetically...pedestrian.

P.S. If you're Brandon's brother, I apologize, but I speak the truth.
Lannis .
196. Lannis
Egglie @ 137: re: Cadsuane teaching Rand laughter and tears... It's been a year or two since I've read that far into the series (still with Leigh on tSR), but I still think that, yes, Cadsuane has to teach Rand to not be hard...

Cadsuane thinks to herself that targets even a hand apart might not be at all alike.

I remember this too, and I agree with you that yes, it could be taken that Cads has a totally different thing to teach Rand, but I took her thought to mean that the goals of Cads and Sorilea are totally different--Cadsuane's being Rand surviving and winning at TG, and Sorilea's hingeing on the whole Aiel "remnant of a remnant" Aiel population/cultural survival.

And Freelancer @ 156 makes a good point, too... or perhaps Cads has some inside info (hearing a foretelling--she'd be of an age to know Gitara Moroso, right? Maybe knew to keep her head down for a few decades then pop out again when no one expected it?) and her agenda is the same as Min's vision. Or... we're back to that whole "targets even a hand apart might not be alike at all" comment...

Circular, anyone?

As per the quotes to back myself up... uh, yeah... I look after five kids during the daylight hours--not only am I not rifling through the books, I'm trying to avoid the grubby paws on the books... ;)

All that said, I have totally been proven wrong before, and never take offense to disagreement... that's the fun of the whole discussion! :)

sinfulcashew @ 139: Yeah, I always rooted for Morgase and Tallanvor, too. Nice avatar! Love those "can't get any closer to the camera without being the camera" shots! :)

GatheringStorm @ 144: re: Betrayer-of-Hopes-for-Good-Characters... BAHAhahaha! I stick out my tongue at you, sir! :P

elvyelvy @ 164 & Wetlander @ 165, and R.Fife: Re: Perrin & Faile (and Faile's age)... I agree... aside from some immature behaviour at the beginning of tSR, there is nothing to indicate that this marriage is unsuitable due to the parties' ages. And R.Fife is right: a lot of the info on Faile's age is based on the opinions of other characters--and we've all see how characters can mislead us in their POVs, or just have info flat out wrong... so what's to say that Faile isn't misjudging Ewin's age, and thereby setting a false marker for the rest of us to follow?

And after all that... I agree with CalaLily @ 169... I don't have a problem with Faile marrying at 15/16... RJs world is not our own.
Galen Brinn
197. GatheringStorm
Lannis said:

GatheringStorm @ 144: re: Betrayer-of-Hopes-for-Good-Characters... BAHAhahaha! I stick out my tongue at you, sir! :P

John Fitzingo
198. Xandar01

Brandon's site is unique and defiantly follows it's own little theme. Have some pro do it and you'll get a cookie cutter design with flashy graphics and crap. Pro isn't always better.
Galen Brinn
199. GatheringStorm

Hey, folks, I realize that for us it keeps interrupting the other cool stuff with this stuck-in-the-mire going-spare-about-his-wife story line, but I honestly don't see how you can be so critical of Perrin if you think about it for more than 3 seconds. Yeah, "wow...really?"

Sorry if my opinion (or other peoples') offends you, Wetlander. We are entitled to them, however.

In consideration for YOUR point of view on the subject, I will politely refrain from expressing mine when we get to that point in the re-read.
Bret Scott
200. BlacksmithButNotEmo
I think the impatience about Perrin chasing after the kidnapped Faile is that it's just so relentlessly long. Books worth. Such a fat chunk of forest goes to the while most everything else spins in place.

It does advance Perrin as a battle commander; he's been more thoroughly blooded after Malden, with his heart on the line. You could argue that he needed to go through all that to prepare for TG.

But damn that one note theme in his head gets tiresome.
Blake Engholm
201. UncrownedKing
while most everything else spins in place.

Thats a perfect way to describe books 8 and 9, for the most part anyway. CoT is the worst in this aspect IMHO. You could sum that book up in 100 words or less and just head into KoD.

But thats not completely true I guess. Stuff does happen, but damn its lacking.

We should take books PoD through CoT and make one book. Take out the chars no one cares about and call it a day.

I'm only waiting for todays installment....

202. Beytrayer of Hopes for Good Characters
re: Gathering Storm @ 197...

(Ahem!) Maybe I should have said it like this...

I stick out my tongue at you, sir! :P

(Yeah, getting bored waiting for the next installment...)
Galen Brinn
203. GatheringStorm
LOL. Glad you like my sense of humor, Lannis/Betrayer-of-Hopes-for-Good-Characters!
Alice Arneson
204. Wetlandernw
GatheringStorm: Sorry if my opinion (or other peoples') offends you, Wetlander. We are entitled to them, however.

Sure you're entitled to them. But isn't this discussion all about pointing out stuff we seem to be missing? And I totally understand the frustration - I could cheerfully have done without the Morgase/Alliandre line, and the interminable feel of the Faile-capture line. (For that matter, I could have done without about half the stuff in books 7-10 or so. I almost stopped reading at that point...) I just thought it might be worth pointing out what Perrin is going through so folks (not just you) could consider it from a different angle. My apologies if I came across too strong for you - when I get going on something like this I get a bit forceful sometimes.

*Help! RFife, am I back to being the scary lady? Not my intention, but thought maybe I could state an alternate perspective...*
Galen Brinn
205. GatheringStorm
It's cool, Wetlandernw.

What I was trying to express was frustration over was Perrin's lie-by-omission in regards to Rand being the Dragon. When Tam basically calls him out on it, Perrin's attitude just seems to be "So what? Get over yourself; my wife's been kidnapped and the world can burn for all I care". Just saying "Yes, he is. I should have told you earlier but there's nothing we can do about it now" would have been a better response (and more in line with what I take his personality to be/have been).

The frustration of taking 3 books to cover a month or two is a whole other ball of wax.
Blake Engholm
206. UncrownedKing
Can someone quote this line.What he actually does say. My books are not with me ATM.

I think there was 52/53 nots in that leather cord he was keeping track with. So almost 2 months in our world.
Deborah Jones
207. NanaD

You are not scary at all.

If we can't express our opinions, like adults, and be respectful of other's opinions, like adults, what is the point of this discussion?

I have never been a critiquer of books I have read, but this forum has caused me to look a little closer to the small details that makes a good story great.
Alice Arneson
208. Wetlandernw
GS: I was conflating your I'm not trying to take away from the fact that his wife is being held as a slave statement with all those others who get down on Perrin "being all emo" and "failing to do his duty" in that scenario. My bad. I'd read one too many "Perrin's such a wuss" comments and they finally shot me off into an FBLR.

In point of fact, it's always bothered me that nobody had the courtesy to tell Tam & Abell what was really happening with their sons. In another point of fact, I have no idea how you could possibly approach that tactfully, so in a sense I can't blame them. One of those "I'll do it when things calm down" excuses. I mean, really, how do you tell a man that his son is still really a good guy, or at least you think he is, even if he is that horrible legend come to life?
Galen Brinn
209. GatheringStorm
UncrownedKing, I think someone quoted it above but it's kind of needle-in-a-haystack-ish trying to find something out of 206 posts.


I don't have my book but if my memory of the quote from above is accurate, Perrin simply says "Nothing to be done about that now", when confronted:

Frowning, Tam watched Grady vanish into the gray murk. "I could wish I'd had some other way to get here," he said. "Fellows like him visited the Two Rivers a while back. One called himself Mazrim Taim, a name we'd all heard. A false Dragon. Only now he wears a black coat with fancy embroidery and calls himself the M'Hael. They talked everywhere about teaching men to channel, about this Black Tower." He freighted the words with sourness. "The Village Councils tried to put a stop to it, and the Women's Circles, but they ended up taking above forty men and boys with them. Thank the Light some listened to sense, or I think they'd have had ten times that." His gaze shifted to Perrin. "Taim said Rand sent him. He said Rand is the Dragon Reborn." There was a touch of questioning in
that, perhaps a hope for denial, perhaps a demand to know why Perrin had kept silent.

--KOD Chapter 29 (as quoted by Aiel1219 in post 112).
Richard Fife
210. R.Fife
Wetlander, don't you know what happens when you invoke my name?

Anywho, here's a happy medium. I don't think G.S. was saying so much that we are vexed with Perrin, but that we are vexed at how we are hammered over the head with him, thus meaning our vexation was more with RJ. Something I have learned in my path to authorship is that "reality sucks". Yes, what Perrin is going through is realistic and fairly well portrayed, but that doesn't mean its readible or enjoyable. Compound on it that books 7-10 were fairly, um, mired down? with stories that were "spinning in the mud", and there were just so many stories that vexed us with a hint of forward motion, then we get to Perrin again where there is no motion (or at least not as much of a forward hint). Thus why I think Perrin is typically the least liked.

As to you being a dragon-lady, wetlander, eh, such is the internet and the joys of strictly "verbal" communication without nonverbal cues. Now *raises batton* let us twitch together.
Sean Banawnie
211. Seanie
A2208 Wetlandernw:
you know I kinda thought the same thing as far as Tam's reaction to Rand --however I had never read (until recently posted here on the re-read ) The Raven story ---and Tam tells the Dragon story and he sounds very sympathtic to the need for the dragon etc I think he might get a reasonable reaction to that very stressful news but I think he could handle it . Mat..... TR wouldn't know what to do with
Luke M
212. lmelior
Wetlandernw @172
I agree, the front page is a complete jumble and not very useful. My bookmark goes directly to the FAQ, though occasionally I'll browse their other sections, like the theory section. Here's an interesting one, for example.

bookwormchris @179
The wayback machine knows all. Well, not all because there is quite a bit missing, but the story of why they aren't around anymore is there on the front page.

@drew re: Brandon's website
My only complaint is that it doesn't render well in Firefox in Linux. The third item in the breaking news section is cut in half, stuck behind the flash frame. The menu drops down behind the frame as well. That's more a problem with Adobe's Linux implementation (it happens on a lot of other sites), but that doesn't mean I can't complain about the use of Flash.

Also, I've been wondering about something. Is there some significance to the shape of the gems on that front page? They are the pretty much exactly the same shapes found in this flash game on Kongregate, and it seems too much for coincidence.
213. RobMRobM
Re criticism of Perrin for not telling Tam earlier - it's what happens when you have two reticent characters. Tam knows Rand is ta'veren and Perrin has hinted that something is up with him. Tam easily could have taken him aside and ask what really is going on, but he chose not to. Perrin likely sees it has Rand's job to inform his father but probably would give the info up if Tam presses him. Tam doesn't (until KoD) and the truth doesn't get told. Not entirely Perrin's fault. Rob

P.s. Waiting (and wondering why Torie is posting in the Beagle thread while Leigh's missive isn't up yet).
214. RebelLives
While we are waiting on Leigh to post our next fix, I thought I would post something completely unrelated to WOT. We are obviously all readers here. What do you guys and gals think of e-readers like the Kindle? Do you think books will ever be replaced? While I'm very intrigued by the Kindle, especially when travelling I personally love the feel and weight of books. Just curious.
215. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
I myself have no comments as to how Perrin had to rearrange his goals in Ghealdan. My main complaint is that his interpersonal skills apparently went with his wife when she got kidnapped.
216. markp
It is much easier to be a leader if people let you lead rather than having to fight everyone else who think they should be leader or know better.
But if Perrin started doing stupid things or forcing people to do things against their wishes he would become unpopular very quickly (or at leaded he would in the real world)

I've always thought RJ made some sort of mistake with ages somewhere.
If you read the first few chapters of the EOTW, from the way they act and especially the way others treat them like they haven't grown up yet. It seems like Rand etc are only ~16 (rather than 19/20) and that Ewin is only a year or two younger so.
217. Freelancer
Back into the Tam business. This is a man who can handle whatever's thrown at him, without a doubt. So he will deal with Rand being Who He Is. That his reaction might be favorable, I strongly doubt. I'll consider two sources for this opinion:

1. From TEotW, where he echoes Bran in warning Rand about the machinations of Aes Sedai. Surely he has had closer experience with White Tower ladies than anyone else in the TRs, so it isn't simply the superstition of such as Cenn Buie.

2. From KoD. His first words to Perrin on coming through the Asha'man's gateway is "I could wish there had been another way to come here". Now, given that he follows up with discussion of Tain taking upwards of 40 men from the area to the Black Tower, we might think it's just that. But even examining Tam's statements about that, the other men tried very hard to convince them NOT to go with the Asha'man.

Tam is no fan of the Power, no matter who is wielding it. In spite of learning that Rand is the DR, and that he instituded the Black Tower, Tam is strongly opposed to anyone freely wishing to be involved with it. I think his mindset in this regard is well established, and even though he will surely support and aid Rand, he'll never be favorable happy that he's a channeler.


I've no trouble at all with your dissection of Perrin's "narrow-minded" goals. And from other reactions, nobody else really is either. They just wished there had been more butt-whooping in those segments than mundane chasing about the countryside. (Hmm, not intended to be a spanking reference)

I completely disagree with those perceptions. You can't get to the battle at Malden, Aram's death, the disabling of the Shaido Wise Ones, Masema's current place in things, Galina's exploits, the gathering to Faile of several hundred "wetlander gai'shain", Morgase's fight to use the Power, etc. without each of the other events that don't happen to be "badass". And that necessarily includes Perrin's temporary truce with Tylee's Seanchan forces, which is NOT insignificant at all.

I'm sure it's just a case of people being raised on too many John Woo, Wachowski Bros, and Rob Cohen movies. If stuff isn't going fast, blowing up, or bleeding heavily, then "nothing is happening".
218. MikeDeepo
Re MarkP @ 216, I think his treatment of ages is pretty good. I know I wasn't treated like an adult at 18, and I certainly wasn't acting like one. It wasn't until I graduated college and started having to deal with things like bills and crappy bosses that my parents/older relatives started treating me like an adult.
Dru O'Higgins
219. bellman
I don't think Tam will disapprove of Rand being the DR until he finds out what that entails. There's a quote from Tam in TEotW, something like there's no subject that can't be discussed. I think Tam meeting Rand and accepting him will be an important step in Rand learning to feel again.
220. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
markp @216
True. The way RMP are described at the beginning of EoTW, you'd think they were in their late teens at most. Always being called "boys" and characterized as always getting into the sort of trouble teenagers do. They aren't even thought to be fit to leave home on their own without attracting the interest of both the town and women's council. In today's society, of course, a twenty year old is already a full adult with all the legal responsibilities.
Chris Hall
221. bookwormchris
lmelior @212
Thank you for that. I keep forgetting that the wayback machine exists.

RebelLives @214
I'm definitely waiting a long time on the ereader thing. I love my physical books and ereaders are just not anywhere close to where they would have to be for me to put down that kind of money. Plus it is very hard to share with those systems. I tend to share a ton of my books with others and to borrow books as well. (Got my brother into a ton of different books, borrowed about 40 books from my friends Senior year of high school.)
j p
222. sps49
@ 190 and others-

Bill Mauldin* expressed it well in his autobiography- "The surest way to become a pacifist is to join the infantry".

* 45th Infantry Division, Purple Heart, Pulitzer during WW2. 2nd Pulitzer as a civilian cartoonist.
223. jlyman
Just a comment on the boys' ages. When I first read the books they seemed to me to be 16 or 17 in TEOTW. However, I can totally see them as being 19 to 20.

I mean, say you graduate high school at 18. How many freshman and sophomore college "kids" do you know who play pranks on roommates, neighbors, etc.; go out partying and are generally irresponsible?

Not to say that they all are, but I'm sure that we all know at least a few around that age who are definitley... ummm, maturity-deficient. So, to me, the guys being about 20 years old is totally okay.
Galen Brinn
224. GatheringStorm
Among us males, how many of us at age 20-ish actually acted 20-ish? I'm 37 and my wife still accuses me of only being 18 at the outside! lol
225. Freelancer

The symbols used on Brandon's website are taken from Elantris and Mistborn. There is no connection nor correlation between symbology in the two sagas. In Elantris, it is the symbols themselves that are a magical focus. In Mistborn, they are just representations of different materials, and although some aspects of the symbols seem to relate to the three different magic systems which exist in that world, there's no deeper description of those provided.


You're right, I don't think it's a matter of approval or disapproval. Tam is much to pragmatic to disapprove of a fact. It is my opinion, however, that he won't find himself able to take it in a "favorable" light. As Egwene is so fond of saying when faced with a hard truth, "Maybe, but it doesn't mean I have to like it".
226. MikeDeepo
Very true. I'm convinced I stopped maturing at around age 14 or so and just learned to fake it when necessary.
Don Barkauskas
227. bad_platypus
One more thing in support of Faile being 15/16: when Bashere first meets Perrin and Perrin tells him that Perrin and Faile are married, on of Bashere's comments is that "'s not old enough to marry without her mother's permission." It seems highly unlikely that he would say that if Faile is 19/20.

Also, in regards to the Two Rivers women allowing a young woman to get married, it's pretty clearly established that they consider maturity---not physical age---for this.
Alice Arneson
228. Wetlandernw
I'm convinced I stopped maturing at around age 14 or so and just learned to fake it when necessary.

Michael Catapano
229. hoping
re kindle
I hesitate to get it because it is so heavily controlled by amazon. It will only play ebooks bought at amazon and you can't do anything else with the content but read it on kindle, so you will pay a premium price and not even own the ebook.
Alice Arneson
230. Wetlandernw
Re: Kindle

They have this great goal of having "every book ever written" available for Kindle, but as of now they're a LONG way from it. For my part, they don't have much available yet that I want to read. That said, if I had a long commute via train or bus, I'd think it was a pretty good thing because it's a lot easier to take along than... say... Lord of Chaos. And the cover won't fall off.

The technology is pretty cool, from what I've seen, and the storage required is a lot less than my current library. But... I'm not going there until they have a lot more that I want to read. And I'm a big one to wait until the technology matures and they get the kinks out...
Alice Arneson
231. Wetlandernw
Dash it all, anyway. Or perhaps, bloody buttered onions. I've been lurking all morning, hoping to catch the new post right away. Now I have to be away from my computer for about 3 hours, so I suppose it will go up as soon as I shut down, and there will be 150 comments to read by the time I get back. *sigh*
232. RebelLives
I think Leigh is waiting till the end of the day Eastern time to torture us after the the crash.
233. hummingbird
Yes, the Two Rivers boys are Taveern. Yes, that is influencing things around them. Yes, there are some powers that be that are doing some maneuvering to put these boys in positions of power.

Is it really being thrust on them? In the context of how we see this story play out, possibly. I wonder however, if these boys would not (if left alone in the Two Rivers) might not have risen to some level of status within the community?

The are from established families (everyone likes Tam and Master Luhan), were obviously of some intelligence and some charms.

The girls would have each in their own right climbed to some levels of authority as well.

So the positions are different, but the question of do societies randomly accept leadership by baffoons or despite being thrust into the positions does society accept the leadership from these individuals because they were destined to lead in some way anyway?
Richard Fife
234. R.Fife
New post for those unaware (no link so you'll actually believe me). Also, Rebel, Torie has taken the credit for our torture. Blame her.
Ellie Virgo
235. Egglie
Lannis@196 Sorry, didn't mean to suggest that you personally should get the books out and look up a quote - just to acknowledge that there might be quotes out there that I had missed.
Captain Hammer
236. Randalator
RobMRobM @191

That plan he made basically read "Hunt Shaido, make Shaido dead Shaido, free Faile, have sex". He's just pursuing the Aiel without looking left or right. Plan making comes only when they reach Malden. But shit has already hit the fan by that time.

As soon as Masema declared he would be alright with Travelling, that's what Perrin should have done:

a) set up basecamp
b) form scouting party + 1 Asha'man
c) tell them to scout, return, Travel, rinse, repeat
d) tell scouting Asha'man to open a gateway to basecamp twice a day (morning and evening)
e) initiate scouting cycle
f) have Asha'man No. 2 open a gateway to Cairhien instead of next scouting location at the end of scouting cycle one
g) lead unsuspecting Prophet et al. through, follow with rest of your army
h) "Strange. Looks almost like Cairhien. Huh, whaddaya know, it IS Cairhien. What a crazy random happenstance! Oh well, scince we're already here..."
i) deliver Prophet to Dragon
j) Travel back to basecamp
k) join scouting party
l) resume "Hunt Shaido, make Shaido dead Shaido, free Faile, have sex"

THAT is a plan.
Sydo Zandstra
237. Fiddler
About Perrin, I never disliked him. I see where he's going to, although I admit he was taking his time.

Shaido: useless thread in storytelling. After Mat killed Couladin it should have been exit for that. Even if they are the remnant of the remnant. They could have left for the Waste 5-6 books earlier.

And that would have saved us a lot of Faile/Perrin-groans.
238. jafco
Heh. Some of you folks ought to write "Alternative Wheel of Time" novels. Then Perrin could do the right (your) thing instead of:

(thanks @188. Shadow_Jak & @191. RobMRobM):

"...limit(ing) Masema's destabilizing depredations in the southwest; destroy(ing) the Shaido; rescuing his wife and daughter of Rand's military 2IC; rescuing the abdicated Queen of Andor (and the mother of Rand's own dear wife, Elayne); rescuing the Queen of Ghealdan (Rand's 'cousin'); setting up the soon to happen reuniting of Morgase and her son Galad (along with 8,000 Whitecloaks under his command); making an alliance with Banner-General Tylee of the Ever Victorious Army (the first occasion of something that must happen in preparation for Tarmon Gai'don) (Mat follows closely, and even more potently, by marrying Tuon and thus becoming Prince of Ravens).

Mat says in KOD (36: Under an Oak): "...Seems to me being ta'veren works on me as much as it does on anybody else...."

I think we're seeing the same with Perrin:

1) When the Two Rivers was in trouble, the pattern let him free of Rand (Mat, though obsessed with getting away, wasn't released) to go to its rescue (misguidedly to turn himself over to the WC; ultimately to become Lord and CIC of the West).

2) When Rand was captured by the Tower AS in LoC, Perrin was driven to his rescue. So now, in the case of the rescue of Faile, there doesn't seem to be a foghorn blowing and lights flashing and so forth calling him to some other duty (if it were Mat, dice would be rattling in his head). He does the thing he has to do, and in doing so gathers benefits galore.

That's the story, and for me it makes sense.

@133. almuric "...In the military of today, that job is given to incompetent nitwits all the time. (Not that I'm saying Tam is incompetent.) In the formal structure of an established military, it doesn't take much leadership ability to command a squad of men. We can assume that Tam did a good job - maybe even an excellent job - and maybe he was raised to that level on his merits...."

Several things: In today's lean, volunteer, battle-tested Army, what you said probably almost never happens. It did happen in the piss-poor draft Army of, say, 1968. 'Nam generally helped straighten things out in the field, but that's a hard way to get good leadership.

Tam was an officer in the Illian army. He fought - and survived - the Aiel, at least in the last grand battles around Tar Valon (and hence was on Dragonmount where he found Rand). He has (won) a Blademaster's sword. The guy is a warrior of considerable stature.

@204. Wetlandernw "...*Help! RFife, am I back to being the scary lady? Not my intention, but thought maybe I could state an alternate perspective...*..."

Naw, W, you're a sweetie. I would have...spanked him... had I been you. :)
Alice Arneson
239. Wetlandernw
Thanks, jafco. I thought about it...;)
240. Blinkers
Oh would you just get over the whole 'Perrin spanked Faile - oooh I'm so angry about that' thing already. We get it, it pissed you off, enough already. But in the world depicted in these books it's an acceptable punishment, so now you need to accept that fact and stop bringing it up in your re-reads.
241. Annika
I always saw the tiganza as a form of bellydancing.
242. Divil The Bother
Good to see that the number of posts is returning to manageable (i.e. comments on these chapters and posts:

1. I agree with 137 Egglie on the ambiguity around what Cadsuane has to teach Rand - is the laughter and tears actually mentioned anywhere other than in Cadsuane's head?

2. Re Faile being old enough to marry. She's already taken advantage of the Naive Emonds Fielders to keep them bowing and scraping to her so it's not as if they're likely to dispute that she's old enough to marry. Anyway if Perrin wants to marry her he's welcome - just another example of how incredibly thick he is!

3. Following on from that one of the reasons I find Faile so unlikeable is how quick she is to see others' roles as simply serving her needs (as in ensuring Perrin's entire home town continue bowing and scraping to him so she gets to Lord it over everyone). This is essentially how Lord Luc behaves and expects from others and we all know he's a baddie. Witness also how natural she finds it that other will choose her to serve slavishly eg Cha Faile and the ridiculous fealty swearing that goes on in the Shaido camp. Someone mentioned her being Tavaren above and that can be the only explanation (as in Jordan deciding it's gonna happen) coz I can't see anything in her that would inspire that level of devotion. Compulsion similarities???

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