Mon
May 11 2009 1:35pm

The Wheel of Time Re-read: The Shadow Rising, Part 17

Wheel of Time Re-read
Returns from weekend resting
Spring is here and stuff.

Chapter 47
And Chapter 48 are
In this post, for reals.

Old re-read entries
Are gathered in Index post
Uh, cherry blossoms.

Poets everywhere
Are spinning in their graves as
I murder their art.

Perhaps we should just
Get on with the recap and
Never speak of this?

Chapter 47: The Truth of a Viewing

What Happens
Siuan is sitting at her desk, checking the Tower’s accounts. She notes that Danelle, the dreamy Brown who was supposed to be handling the masons, must be too distracted to notice that there are far more masons on the payroll than can possibly be needed for the work to be done. She is irritated by the lack of news; she hasn’t heard anything from Moiraine since the message that Rand had taken Callandor. She sorts through the papers in her special box: a report that Sahra, the novice who had taken Min to Siuan when she first arrived, had disappeared from the farm she had been sent to; a report on Masema, who had gathered a crowd of ten thousand to hear him speak about the Dragon Reborn, whom Masema named as Rand al’Thor; a report that Mazrim Taim was still at large; reports of sisters vanishing in Illian and Caemlyn. She thinks of how the Hall had voted as expected, that al’Thor must be the Dragon Reborn, and therefore must be guided by the Tower, and Siuan had successfully deflected the proposal that they sent a delegation to him immediately. Then the door crashes open, and Elaida enters, followed by eleven more sisters, most Red but also including Alviarin, Joline Maza of the Green, Shemerin (Yellow), and Danelle. Infuriated, Siuan demands to know what Elaida thinks she is doing.

Her cold rage should have sent them scurrying, but though a few shifted uneasily, none made a move toward the door. Little Danelle actually smirked at her. And Elaida calmly reached out and pulled the striped stole from Siuan’s shoulders. “You will not need this any longer,” she said. “You were never fit for it, Siuan.”

In disbelief, Siuan reaches for saidar, and finds that she is blocked. Elaida wraps her in Air, and Siuan says they must be mad, and demands that they release her. Alviarin goes to the desk and tries to open the box, and springs back as it bursts into flames, leaving the contents in ashes. Elaida promises Siuan that she will tell them every word of what was inside.

“You must be taken by the Dragon!” Siuan snapped. “I will have your hide for this, Elaida. All of your hides! You will be lucky if the Hall of the Tower doesn’t vote to still all of you!”

Elaida’s tiny smile did not touch her eyes, “The Hall convened not an hour ago—enough Sisters to meet our laws—and by unanimous vote, as required, you are no longer Amyrlin. It is done, and we are here to see it enforced.”

Siuan is frightened, but tries to bareface her way out, threatening Elaida with dire consequences once the full Hall meets and condemns what she has done. Elaida lets her finish, then slaps her in the face, and tells her did she really think Elaida would allow her to destroy the Tower? Two of the Reds shove Siuan into the anteroom, where she sees that Leane is similarly bound with Air, and then, with shock, the body of her Warder, Alric, with a knife in his back. She snarls that Elaida will pay for this; Elaida begs to differ, and tells her followers to bring them below.

Min strolls in the North Gate, all ready to flirt with the guards, and then realizes there are none, and sees a plume of smoke rising within the Tower grounds. She walks in, thinking about whether Rand would prefer to see her in dresses like she wore now, and swearing that she will not dress up for any man. Her thoughts are interrupted when Gawyn and a crowd of young students burst from the trees carrying spears and bared blades. She asks Gawyn what’s going on, and Gawyn tells her that Amyrlin was deposed this morning, and Min must leave; Hammar is about to try to break Siuan out, and he must go. He runs off, the young men calling “The White Boar!” and “The Younglings!” Min whispers to herself that Gawyn had not said what side he was on. She hears more fighting, and thinks that she should leave, but instead looks for someplace to lay low until she can decide what to do next.

Siuan wakes in the dungeons, naked and covered in welts and bruises from the questioning they had submitted her to. Her memory is hazy, but she thinks that she had told them nearly everything, in the end. Leane asks unsteadily if she is there, and Siuan apologizes to her.

There was a long moment of silence. “Are you . . . all right, Mother?”

“Siuan, Leane. Just Siuan.” Despite herself she tried to embrace saidar. There was nothing there. Not for her. Only the emptiness inside. Never again. A lifetime of purpose, and now she was rudderless, adrift on a sea far darker than this cell.

She supposes Elaida has been made Amyrlin in her place, and vows vengeance. Then she hears a key turning in the cell door, and tells Leane to get up; whatever happens, they will face it on their feet, she thinks, and tries to avoid despair.

Min struggles with the cell door key while Laras hovers anxiously next to her. Min is still amazed that Laras had not only gotten Min to tell her what her plan was, but had agreed to help. She gets the door open and enters, but then hesitates; the two women on the floor don’t look like Siuan and Leane hardly at all to her, instead looking no more than six or so years older than herself, and they have no images or auras around them. But then one of them asks what they’re doing there in Siuan’s voice, and Min thrusts the bundles of clothes at them and tells them to get dressed quickly; she and Laras had knocked out the guard, but she is not sure how long he will be out. As she obeys, Siuan looks at Laras and comments she is glad that at least some do not seem to believe the charges against her; Laras frowns and says she must go, but reassures Min that she will not give them away, and warns Siuan and Leane that who is Amyrlin does not matter to her, but if they get “this child” caught (meaning Min), she will work them harder in the scullery than they would believe. She pinches Min’s cheek fondly and leaves. Leane is angry at Laras’ disrespect to Siuan, but Siuan tells her it is more than she can expect right now. Siuan tells Min that they have been stilled, and Min tells her she knows; it was announced all through the city. They make their way up into the Tower proper, avoiding several sisters and Warders; when they come to a corridor streaked with blood Siuan demands of Min to know what happened, and Min tells her that the Warders were fighting men who had come in as masons. She says that the Ajahs have split, mostly; the Reds are almost all still here, but there isn’t a Blue sister left in the Tower, and most of the Greens are gone as well. Logain escaped during the fighting, and that as well as Mazrim Taim’s escape is being laid at Siuan’s feet.

[Siuan’s] face twisted more, until Min thought she might begin crying. “Artur Hawkwing could not do it, but we did it ourselves.” Edge of tears or not, her voice was fierce. “The Light help us, we have broken the Tower.”

They continue on, and run headlong into Elaida, wearing the stole of the Amyrlin, accompanied by Alviarin, wearing the stole of Keeper, and an entourage of Warders and sisters, mostly Red. Min, Siuan, and Leane kneel, faces hidden by their cloak hoods, and the party sweeps by without noticing them. Siuan watches them leave, and says that she had heard that the only thing that helps a woman survive stilling is to find something she wants as much as she wants to channel. She says she knows what it is for her: to make Elaida rue the day she ever claimed Siuan was a Darkfriend. Leane chimes in to add Alviarin to this, and Min urges them on to where she has hidden horses. They reach the horses without further incident, and Min introduces Siuan to Bela as the most suitable for an inexperienced rider.

“Her horse.” Gawyn stepped from behind a wide-trunked paperbark, one hand on the long hilt of his sword. The blood streaking his face made exactly the pattern Min had seen in her viewing, her first day back in Tar Valon. “I knew you must be up to something, Min, when I saw her horse.” His red-gold hair was matted with blood, his blue eyes half-dazed, but he walked toward them smoothly, a tall man with a catlike grace. A cat stalking mice.

Min tries to stop him, but he flicks Siuan’s hood back with his sword, and says her disguise will not fool him, and demands she tell him where his sister and Egwene are. Siuan answers calmly that the last she heard, they were safe, but she does not know where they are now. Gawyn says softly that he is done with Aes Sedai word games, and Siuan tells him without hesitation that they are in Illian, studying with a sister named Mara Tomanes. He murmurs “not Tear”, and then remarks that they are saying Siuan is Black Ajah. Min puts a hand on his wrist, and says that surely he cannot believe she would help anyone who is a Darkfriend, and that his own sister and Egwene both support and believe in Siuan. He trembles, but says nothing. Siuan tells him that yesterday she was the most powerful woman in the world, and tonight she may be sleeping under a bush; is that not punishment enough? Gawyn sheathes his sword, and tells her that he only lets her go because he is not ready for her to be killed, for what she knows. Min asks him to come along, but he tells her not to ask for more than he can give.

“I will take you to the nearest gate. You would never get out without me. That’s all I can do, Min, and it is more than I should. Your arrest has been ordered; did you know that?” His eyes swung back to Siuan. “If anything happens to them,” he said in that expressionless voice, “to Egwene or my sister, I will find you, wherever you hide, and I will make sure the same happens to you.”

He marches off a little way, and Siuan says unsteadily that she’d forgotten what it is like to face someone able to kill her so easily. She looks at Leane, studying the changes in her face. She says she thought from what she read that the look would take longer to fade, but maybe their rough treatment had something to do with it; but it is not without advantages. She can lie, now, and their faces may well serve as disguises. Min asks if they will age like ordinary people, now, and Siuan answers that no stilled woman has lived long enough to find out, but she intends to. Gawyn harshly orders them to get on with it, and marches off. As they catch up with him, they are joined by some twenty young men, all armed and most sporting wounds. Min tells Siuan that they call themselves the Younglings, but does not tell her that some of the Warders planned to free her and Leane, and might have succeeded were it not for Gawyn and his followers’ intervention. The guards at the gate tell Gawyn that they have orders not to let anyone leave, but Gawyn tells them softly that he means to see these women out, or the guards dead.

The grizzled man shifted uneasily, and one of the others muttered, “He’s the one they say killed Hammar and Coulin.”

Siuan asks coldly if this is true, and Gawyn whirls and says they were friends, but they sided with... Siuan Sanche. He thrusts a paper granting them passage out of the city at Min, and yells at them to get out before he changes his mind, and they hurry out quickly. Leane comments that she always thought Galad was the more dangerous of the two, but now she is not so sure. Siuan wants to stay close to the city, to gather up the Aes Sedai who have fled, but Leane tells her flatly that they will not follow her any longer. Siuan snaps back that she knows, but wants to make sure they pick the right person to take her place; Leane can go off and raise children if she wants. Siuan asks Min if the Gawyn’s paper specifies three women, and when Min says it does not, boots Bela ahead to cut off a man she had been watching skulking around in the street ahead of them, who turns out to be Logain. Logain slumps in defeat, and says he just wanted to go somewhere to die in peace, but he’s tried all the bridges and no one will let him across. Then he realizes they are not Aes Sedai, and asks who they are. Siuan tells him she is the one who can take him out of Tar Valon, and give him his chance for revenge on the Red Ajah. Logain studies her a moment, and then tells him he is her man. Min and Leane are astounded, and Min can’t imagine what use Logain would be to them; suddenly she sees the gold and blue aura around him again, speaking of glory to come.

For a moment she let herself think of the images she had glimpsed, just for a moment, flickering around Gawyn’s head. Gawyn kneeling at Egwene’s feet with his head bowed, and Gawyn breaking Egwene’s neck, first one then the other, as if either could be the future.

The things she saw were very rarely as clear in meaning as those two, and she had never before seen that fluttering back and forth, as though not even the viewing could tell which would be the true future. Worse, she had a feeling near to certainty that it was what she had done this day that had turned Gawyn toward those two possibilities.

She shivers, thinking that it’s too late to change what she had done, and hopes it was worth it.

Commentary
And we mark TSR kicking into high gear for the Big Ass Ending riiight – now. The chapter title is awesomely tsk tsk.

From my current perspective, Siuan’s downfall seems inevitable and only to be expected, but I was shocked, when I read it for the first time, at how far Jordan took it. I was expecting that Elaida was going to make trouble, but that she not only staged a full-on palace coup, but stilled both Siuan and Leane... well, I was appalled. Remember that at this point we had been assured multiple times that stilling was irreversible, and even the secondary effects of, you know, wanting to die aside, the notion of having your power just taken away from you like that is horrifying. I felt horrible for both Siuan and Leane. Still do, really.

I was also infuriated at Gawyn – a reaction which I am hardly alone in, judging from what other people have had to say about the Tower coup in general. I know that the reasoning is supposed to be that he hated Siuan for hiding Elayne and Egwene from him, and I suppose that that’s even sufficient justification, viewed objectively, but AARRGH.

Seriously, I can’t even fathom the reasoning here. How could he have done that? How could he have sided with Elaida? Even leaving aside that it’s frickin’ Elaida, how could he have sided with a usurper, no matter how much he might have not cared for the rightfully placed ruler? Hello, isn’t he a prince? Participating in a frickin’ coup d’etat didn’t set off some cognitive dissonance, there?

Agh, see, I’m reduced to using too many italics, that’s how much Gawyn has pissed me off. I just want to smack him upside the head. With an oar. AARRGH. Idiot!

(And where was Galad in all this? I can’t remember if we found out later whether he participated or not. Or had he already run off to become a Whitecloak (*headdesk* *headdesk*) by this time? God damn, but this family is fucked up.)

I was also disproportionately sad to find out that Hammar had died. We only got to see him once, when he presided over Mat’s ass-kicking of Dumb and Dumber in TDR, but he was awesome in his brief screen time. What a waste. Do we ever find out whose Warder he was?

This chapter also reiterates why Min is an exceedingly cool character, because UNLIKE SOME PEOPLE, she doesn’t let her personal likes and dislikes deter her from doing the right thing. Although, I can’t help thinking that Min is currently putting herself in a position to be a living embodiment of the old saw that no good deed goes unpunished.

Laras was also great; I do like when a minor character that can generally be described in one sentence comes out and does something to contradict that two-dimensionality.

Some Jordan Mysteries are further confuzled in this chapter, namely the Mesaana deep cover persona and the issue of the Ageless Look. The Ageless thing just puzzled me on first reading; not on what was going on with it, exactly, but more that I couldn’t figure out why it was being made such a big deal of. I found out later, of course – I’d say the issue of whether you’re cutting your life span in half is pretty major, actually.

As for Mesaana, my memory of KOD is very hazy but I’m pretty sure we still don’t find out for sure who she was masquerading as in the Tower; if I’m wrong I’m sure someone in the comments will correct me Toot Sweet. However, assuming I’m not wrong, Danelle became a major candidate for her cover identity mostly on the basis of this chapter (and Alviarin’s thoughts on the subject later). It’s definitely the theory I subscribe(d) to, because I never bought Tarna Feir as Mesaana for a second, especially not after her very un-Red-like behavior in COT. (My reasons why are pretty well summed up in the FAQ entry on the subject.)

There’s also the issue of Alric, Siuan’s Warder, which people have claimed as a gaffe because Siuan’s failure to notice that he was dead until she saw him contradicts all the other lore we have concerning the Warder bond. This is one of those that I do believe is something of a screw-up, but for plot-related reasons couldn’t really be corrected without rewriting the entire scene; that whole sequence hinges on the fact that Siuan is taken completely by surprise. Thus the ex post facto sort-of explanation we get about it in LOC:

“Alric, her Warder. Her dead Warder, murdered when Elaida deposed her. She could lie – the Three Oaths were still gone – but some part of her bond to Alric, a bond flesh to flesh and mind to mind, had been resurrected. The pain of his death, the pain first masked by the shock of what Elaida intended and then buried by stilling, that pain filled her to the brim.”

*shrug* It’s a thing. I don’t let it keep me up nights.

Chapter 48: An Offer Refused

What Happens
Aviendha walks alongside Rand’s horse, needling him about Isendre. She says contemptuously that Isendre is weak and soft, but Rand, watching her watch him from the wagon with Kadere, disagrees about the “soft” part. Aviendha starts muttering about Elayne and taking Rand as gai’shain to her, and Rand tries to divert her by asking her to explain about roofmistresses, which she does with ill grace; Rand thinks about how he had finally gotten Bair to admit that Aviendha had not gone through the glass columns on her trip to Rhiudean, so he cannot figure out why she hates him so much. Her lectures, though, and even her tantrums, have been the most pleasurable part of the last eleven days.

If she saw a man she hated, at least she was too wrapped up in that to see He Who Comes With the Dawn, or the Dragon Reborn. Just Rand al’Thor. At any rate, she knew what she thought of him. Not like Elayne, with one letter that made his ears grow hot and another written the same day that made him wonder if he had grown fangs and horns like a Trolloc.

He is disturbed, though, that now Aviendha has started to appear in his dreams along with Min and Elayne. Moiraine has continued to try to bully him into revealing his plans; Aviendha thinks he is a fool for angering her. Egwene spends most of her time with the Wise Ones, and finally has taken her hair out of the two braids; Rand has figured out that she is passing for full Aes Sedai again. The Jindo seem a little easier around him now, but other than Aviendha no one really talks to him that much, except for when Lan and Rhuarc come to practice the sword and the spear with him, and except for Kadere, who has been continuously hinting that he has information he’d like to sell. Rand tells him that he’s not sure knowledge is always worth the price. Natael came by on the first evening to tell Rand that the Dragon Reborn should have someone to compose the great epic of his story. He asked as “research” how Rand feels about his prophesied destiny. Rand answered that he feels tired. Natael murmured that it was hardly a heroic emotion, but understandable, considering the world is full of people who either want to kill him or use him. Rand asked which one is Natael.

“I? I am a simple gleeman.” The man lifted an edge of his patch-covered cloak as if for proof. “I would not take your place for all the world, not with the fate that accompanies it. Death or madness, or both. ‘His blood on the rocks of Shayol Ghul . . . ’ That is what The Karaethon Cycle, the Prophecies of the Dragon, says, is it not? That you must die to save fools who will heave a sigh of relief at your death. No, I would not accept that for all your power and more.”

Rand thinks of how Natael had continued to pester him about his epic over the following days, but only seemed interested in the morbid details of how Rand was going to deal with madness and death. Natael finally seemed to have gotten tired of Rand’s repeated answer of “I will do what I must”, and left him alone; now he spends most of his time in the Shaido camp. Aviendha spends some of her time with the Wise Ones, and Rand realizes it is to learn to channel the day a giant ball of fire streaks out from their group. He is bitterly amused that Aviendha gets a teacher when he does not. Mat has been mostly avoiding him, refusing to talk about Rhuidean when he does talk to Rand, and claiming he remembers nothing of the ter’angreal, and then contradicting himself by warning Rand that “they” cheat. He spends most of his time dicing with the wagon drivers and pursuing Isendre. Isendre doesn’t discourage it, and Kadere never says a word. One afternoon Rand overhears Keille march up to where Mat is chatting up Isendre and offer to sell her to him for a gold mark. Isendre threatens Keille and marches off, and Keille pinches Mat’s cheek, saying few men have refused her twice, and he should be careful she doesn’t decide to do something about it. Then she looks at Rand.

“Tell him, my Lord Dragon. I have a feeling you know something of the dangers of scorning a woman. That Aiel girl who follows you about, glaring. I hear you belong to another. Perhaps she feels scorned.”

“I doubt it, Mistress,” he said dryly. “Aviendha would plant a knife in my ribs if she believed I had thought of her that way.”

After she leaves, Mat mutters “they’re all crazy”, but does not stop going after Isendre. Now, on the twelfth day, Rand realizes he hasn’t heard a word of Aviendha’s lecture on roofmistresses, and had just been listening to the sound of her voice. Rhuarc comes to tell him that they have arrived at Cold Rocks Hold.

Commentary
Jordan does love his nested flashback sequences, and I apologize for the rather confusing tense changes in my recap as a result. Basically this is a catch-up chapter to get us from where we left off with Rand’s storyline at Imre Stand to where the next major thing happens, at Cold Rocks Hold.

There are some items of interest here, though. This is where Rand’s feelings for Aviendha are really starting to shift toward Wuv, and if his reasons for doing so are more than a little bizarre (he likes that she hates him personally, instead of as a prophesied destroyer!), at least they have the distinction of being fairly unique. I still don’t know that I buy it as a romance overall, but this is an ongoing issue with Rand’s Three Women, and basically at some point you either have to accept it and move on, or, well, not.

Natael: the interesting thing about his quote above is that it’s strangely honest. Not just in that I think Asmodean is actually being sincere (I do), but in that he’s saying what everyone else is thinking, which is that any sane person would not want to be in Rand’s shoes for all the whiskey in Ireland. That Asmodean means this as a segue into trying to bring Rand to the Dark Side is just a detail, heh.

(Though, is that what he’s doing? It seems like Asmodean has his own agenda here; my impression is that he’s going along with Lanfear’s “teaching” proposition while in the meantime plotting to get into Rhuidean and steal the access ter’angreal, in which case it seems like he shouldn’t give a shit whether Rand turns or not. But hey, maybe it’s for the sake of appearances. Or maybe he just really is that morbid.)

Mat spends what little appearance he has in this chapter being alternately amusing (contradicting himself over the Foxes) and backsliding into being a bit of a dumbass. I don’t like seeing him make a fool of himself. As a side note, I think that while he’s being stupid in pursuing Isendre, I don’t think he’s being a pig about it, at least according to his own rules. If Isendre had told him to get lost, he would have, and that’s pretty much what matters. So he’s not exactly covering himself in glory here, but at least he’s not hurting anyone but himself.



Post is now over
Try to go on with your lives
Sad readers are sad.

But come back Wednesday
For action, adventure, and
Really wild things, yo

323 comments
T C
1. Freelancer
Wow, Leigh, an early jump on us this fine Monday?

Nice work again, and I'm only going to dive into one thought for starters.

Danelle is Mesaana, this chapter just about proves it.
Sparrowhawk
2. Sparrowhawk
Marvellous its 12:30 am in this part of the world and this is a pleaseant surprise.

Thanks!
Sparrowhawk
3. AlleyGirl
Awesome as always Leigh!

Notice the index isn't updated since Part 15 though.

The thing I remember most from this area in the book is that I was positive who Lanfear was, from Keille's first appearance, but I had no idea about Asmo. Maybe because we hadn't really met him before?
Leigh Butler
4. leighdb
AlleyGirl @3:

Huh, I just checked and the Index is up to date. Maybe you should try again?
Sparrowhawk
5. Toryx
The business about Alric dying without Siuan knowing about it has bothered me from the first time I read the book, lo so many years ago. I definitely believe it was a mistake, and given all the threads and rules and things RJ had to deal with, I don't blame him for it. But still, it irritates me like a mosquito bite.

I remember being infuriated at Elaida for getting away with her coup and pissed at Gawyn for fighting against the warders who tried to break her free. Now that I've re-read the books more than once, however, I kind of think that Siuan made so many mistakes that it was foolish of her not to expect to be dethroned.

That doesn't mean that she (and certainly not Leane) deserved what happened to them, however. Siuane was as blinded by pride as any Aes Sedai.

I feel more sympathy now for Gawyn than I originally did. Stupid, yes, but he's as stubborn as his sister and Siuan just pushed him too far. I'm actually more angry at Siuan's holier than thou actions driving Gawyn to such foolishness than at Gawyn making such a dumb decision.

As for Elaida, I actually enjoy reading her POV chapters, knowing that she's going to get exactly what she deserves for her arrogance and pride.

Natael/ Asmodean always fascinated me. He's one of the most interesting of the Forsaken, I always thought.
Galen Brinn
6. GatheringStorm
I never liked Elaida, from the moment she showed up in TEotW, but chapter 47 cemented her in the Characters Who Must Be Despised Top 10 List of All Time.

What an arrogant, overproud (mumble...mumble...grumble...grumble).

Then add in the ArchDumbass Gawyn...grrr.

It's a great chapter, but it definitely makes the blood boil to read it.
Sparrowhawk
7. MDiBs84
I think we all forget Gawyn grew up with Elaida bossing him around almost as much as his mother. His alleigence to her is probably just behind Morgase and Elayne.
Sparrowhawk
8. longtimefan
Just a note on the frustrating choice Gwayn makes to support Elaida over Suian.

Elaida attached herself to the ruling house of Andor right after her prophecy. Sad news, the ruling house had changed by the time she got there.

So Elaida is now the advisor to Morgase and her family. At that time probably just her and her new husband and stepson.

Gwayn grew up with Elaida in his mother's household. She was the Advisor to the Queen. It is not unreasonable to believe that there was a personal belief in Elaida's abilities over Suian's who was Amyriln and as such much more distant and unknown. Plus Suian kept his sister from him whom he was sworn to protect.

It was not the best decision on his part but as a young person with certain experiences and responsibilities supporting Elaida can be seen as a difficult but reasonable choice.
John Massey
9. subwoofer
Hey Leigh,

Wonderful work- interesting poem.... As far as Gawyn, yes he's a great thumping boob. You make excellent points about him being of an existing monarchy and basically sanctioning a coup. Something smells fishy in Denmark...

The whole instability of kingdoms is a constant theme in WoT and I have ranted on before about the whole Gawyn thing but I just wanted to reiterate his questionable motivation leaves me unsatisfied
Sparrowhawk
10. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
You're right about Asmodean, Leigh. He's basically switched to Plan B: get into Rhuidean by now. And if that was his end goal he wouldn't care about whether Rand turned because presumably with an angreal or the mother (or father) of sa'angreal he could overpower Rand or any of the other Forsaken. He might even be sincere about wanting to compose and sing Rand's song. Always was the more cultured one among the Forsaken, Asmo was.

Gawyn is basically wavering here. He probably supported Elaida because he thought with Siuan under the question his sister would... magically... resurface. Since that did not happen he decides that keeping Siuan alive is his only link to her.
Sparrowhawk
11. tacoma
Love the poetry, Leigh. Oh, and the post, too. Thanks!
Sparrowhawk
12. SusanB
Great commentary...I loved that you would use an oar to thump Gawyn, its exactly what Siuan would do!

I've always wondered if Elaida convinced Gawyn to fight for her prior to her coup in some off screen moment that we are not privy to. Otherwise, why would he join either side? He's a student there, not a warder or a hired soldier. The warders obviously fight on their AS's side & so fight each other. But there is no reason for any warder to fight any student, unless the student started it. And if the "masons" started fighting the students, then the students would be opposing Elaida when fighting back, not joining her. Just my thoughts.

I do have an unrelated question for anyone...I'm thinking about buying a Kindle. Are these books available on the Kindle or will they be soon? I tried looking in the Kindle bookstore & found some of the prologues, but didn't find the books. I'm wondering if I somehow missed them. Whether or not these books are available on the Kindle will affect my decision to purchase it. If anyone with Publishing Power reads this...I would still buy the new books in hardback, b/c I have all the others & would want to complete my collection. Then I would also buy all the books for the Kindle, so I can read them whenever & where ever I want.

Thanks all.
Michael Johnson
13. twosheddz
Haiku! Nice, Leigh!

I like how Elaida says, "Do you really think I would let you destroy the tower." She forgot the next line: "Foolish amateur, I can destroy the tower a hundred times more effectively than you!"

These chapters are where, for me, Gawyn changes from cool to someone would should DIABF.
Michael Johnson
14. twosheddz
Susan B

No they are not available on the Kindle. Someone needs to get their head out of their fourth point of contact. Some of the prologues are available as samples, I believe.

It has not stopped me from putting it on my Kindle, however. I will get them when they are legit, even though I own a complete paperback and most of a hard cover set.

Love the Kindle! I can follow this blog on it at work when it's not busy. I don't have outside interweb access there.
Luke M
15. lmelior
Darn, I thought I would be the first commenter to note the haiku. If you weren't counting syllables, the cherry blossoms line gave it away.

Chapter 47 is my least favorite chapter of the entire series, while at the same time being the reason I positively devoured the seven books afterward (my first readthrough was when KoD was released). I was so angry when I read this chapter that time that I was shaking. I don't think my second (unfinished) readthrough was much better either.

Great stuff.
Sparrowhawk
16. MCSwan
The thing that bothers me most about Alric is that it is cold-blooded murder. If deposing Suian was done in accordance with Tower law, however specious, then Suian's capture, questioning and stilling was within the law. Elaida was the legal Amrylin. Here's where I disagree with you, Leigh, Gawyn was on the right side of the law - if Elaida is the lawful Amyrlin, then any armed resistance is rebellion. However, none of that would allow a murder in order to enforce the law. Especially when simply wrapping Alric up in Air would suffice. Plus, that would get around the gaffe of Suian not noticing his death. If Jordan really needed the suffering, then Arlic could have easily been in a conventional cell, gone insane at Suian's stilling, and was killed in an escape attempt. As it is, he was blatantly murdered and NOBODY but Suian turns a hair.
Sparrowhawk
17. RobMRobM
Quick thought - as McSwan pointed out, deposing was lawful so Gawyn was on the right legal side. Might even be a commentary somewhere in the later books where he said it was not his job to get in middle of disputes among AS. Fact that he grew up with Elaida probably made decision to support her easier. I am, however, also curious about whether there was a conversation with Gawyn ahead of time where he was advised it was lawful. Otherwise, how would he know which side to choose.

Gawyn to me is one of the saddest characters in the whole book. Ultra cool and nice in books one and two, caught up in all this Elaida cr@p, and turns into a jerkface for moost of the rest of the books (except when cuddling with Egwene in Carhien, where he is again cool). They need to get him back on right side of the house as quickly as possible in AMOL - and I still can't figure out how they are going to get to the Gawyn holds Egwene's life in his hands dream from Min....

Rob
John Cater
18. katre
About Asmodean and Rhuidean: Does he actually know the access ter-angreal are there? Or does he just know it's a big cache of angreal and ter'angreal, and wants to loot it? Also, what's stopping him from just walking in? Rand and Matt didn't have any problems that one of the Forsaken couldn't have dealt with.
Michael Catapano
19. hoping
Great Post Leigh

Danelle seems to be the best candidate for Mesanna that we have seen so far. The dreamy brown that is suddenly alert and smirking, I guess is meant to be a clue that she is hiding something. But Verin also appears dreamy and then hits M (in tGH) that she assumes Rand is the Dragon. All AS hide something. A RAFO here, I think.

The sling has been used. The shepherd holds the sword.
I can't figure out what the first half means. Perhaps some M and S code.

I started disliking Gawyn as a slime in this chapter. He was in on the coup with Elaida from the onset. Why else would he have organized what is essentially his own militia within the tower? I wonder why Hammer etal allowed it?

The alric thing. I dealing with it the best I can. It was also troublesome that Siuan did not notice 12 channelers roping up Leane with air. I realize that channeling happens in the tower but right outside the room she was in? Seems far fetched.

I wish we had more Asmo POV about his plans and the changes. He and lanfear must have had some plan going in but they were seen arguing constanly, it seems.
Sparrowhawk
20. TARABONER
i never understod the Tower coup . what exactly was legally questionable about it?. why did the aes sedai start figthing each oter?.
Luke M
21. lmelior
One more thing, later on we get hints something along the lines that Mesaana tends to tap her lips when she is thinking. Anything like that happen in this chapter?
Michael Johnson
22. twosheddz
MCSwan @16

I was going to note that as well. It was legal (if barely) and Gawyn did have a long relationship with Elaida and emnity toward Siuan. I still think he's a jerk. Alric's murder along with the imported masons make it feel like everything was not on the up and up.

lmelior

I hope I would notice haiku, my wife's Japanese. Hopefully, I'll recognize origami and bonsai if Leigh throws them at us. On that note, anyone know how to get the Japanese versions? I've been poking around on Japanese book sites and can't seem to find them.
T C
23. Freelancer
Leigh,

In your recap, you make no mention of the men seen around the gates when Gawyn lets Min/Siuan/Leane go, and threatens the gate guard. It is noted in the text that they included men who came with the masons.

Why would the extra masons, the ones about which Siuan is displeased with Danelle enough to consider ordering a penance, be involved in securing the Tower grounds? Hmmm?

And as much as we all dislike Elaida, what has just happened that causes Elaida to be bold enough to stage a coup? After all, Siuan had been pleased that the Hall approved supporting the Dragon once it was learned he had drawn Callandor. It seemed her and Moiraine's plans were finally beginning to flow as desired. Hmm, there's that bit about Sahra Covenry going missing. We all know that she and the farmowner have been murderered. But surely not by Elaida. Who would have known that she could connect Min with Siuan, and with Elayne and Egwene's whereabouts?

If a female forsaken has just learned that Al'Thor is to be guided by a freelancing Aes Sedai that is outside of the Tower's grasp (and therefore the forsaken's), and that Siuan intends it to stay that way as long as possible, they would act. I really don't see Elaida doing this on her own dime, but being "motivated" to do it.

So who's mentioned by name in the crowd behind Elaida? Alviarin, whom we know is Black. Joline, who gets unceremoniously shipped off to Ebou Dar with Teslyn as a virtual punishment (or because she knows almost too much?). Shemerin, who is later demoted to Accepted, of all things (because she knows too much?). And Danelle, who was about to get in trouble with the Amyrlin for allowing too many masons to be included on the payroll. And about whom we learn nothing more, except that she is still in the Tower during Elaida's reign. And reminders that she's of the bronze brown ajah.

I despise Elaida, but since I believe that Danelle = Mesaana, the coup is under her direction. It makes perfect sense to have brought in extra muscle (the unexplainable "masons") to help secure the Tower, if she doesn't know for sure which way the balance of warders will fall. Does she know enough to "use" Gawyn in the creation of the Younglings, in opposition to the warders who would naturally support Siuan? No way to say, but it would explain the otherwise confusing decision Gawyn makes.

I have trouble with the idea that Gawyn's loyalty to Elaida is that great. I seem to get the impression that both he and Elayne are somewhat wary of their mother's stern, harsh advisor. Gawyn's reflex to threaten Siuan is held in check only by his wish to learn more about Elayne and Egwene, but I wonder how he expects to get that information after letting Siuan go. Does he really think she'll keep herself available to him? That scene actually seems more like the later one where Morgase finally throws off Rahvin's Compulsion.
Luke M
24. lmelior
Also, we have this tidbit from the wotmania faq:

Mesaana turned to the Dark Lord because she was not the best in her profession. A woman of average height and appearance, Saine Tarasind was hardheaded, practical, and intelligent, though often taken for being dreamy because of her introspection. It has been said that she was interested in real power, not the appearance of it. Appearances were never important to her. She wanted desperately to be a successful researcher. (Emphasis mine)
Alice Arneson
25. Wetlandernw
This is a chapter where I have real battles between my "it's only a book" side and "you idiot why did you do that?" side. I KNOW it's a book, and Jordan wrote the things he did for a reason and all that. But Gawyn just irritates me crazy here. If he really wanted to find Elayne & Egwene, why didn't he just go with Siuan? He's so sure that keeping her alive is necessary to finding out what happened to the girls, and then he lets her just leave to wander off who-knows-where in the big wide world where he has as little chance of finding her as of finding E&E. Gah!

But the other side of me says yes, but then the story would have had to be very different...

I agree with Leigh's comment on first/later reactions to the coup: the first time through I was stunned and horrified and all those other adjectives. And even on the reread, it still hits me that way. It's just so wrong!! I know Siuan should have done a lot of things differently, but Elaida.... Gack! Ick! Nasty!

Okay, I'll quit spluttering and go clean my computer screen now.
Kurt Lorey
26. Shimrod
Here's an idle thought. How about if Mesaana were Laras and Danelle? I have always been torn between them as my choices for Mesaana, so why not choose both?

Why?

The reader has never see them in the same scene.

Danelle had few/no friends, Laras would have had no peers who might expect friendship. So, both are rather withdrawn from the rest of the Tower.

Both have done things not normally expected of present-day Randland characters. For being "young", Danelle had some real authority with managing a major construction project. Plus, there was that "smirk" when Suian was deposed. Little details like that always set off an alarm in my head. Laras helping Min release Suian and Leane would certainly fit the "Let the Lord of Chaos Rule" fiat. Plus, there was that chatter about almost being hung when she was younger. Laras with naughty past? Hmm.

The potential "hole" would be if one (or both) were not blue-eyed with a melodious voice. Lanfear wasn't above the Keille look, you'd think at least one other Forsaken might be smart enough to do the same occasionally.

Moving on. Alric's death always bugged me, too. Maybe Suian didn't feel his death because she was shielded?

Like many young men, Gawyn acted upon the "facts" at hand, most of which had been purposely clouded by Suian. He was becoming frantic that he couldn't find Elayne, and I certainly see where he acted in the hope that Elaida would be kind enough to help him find Elayne again (a vain hope though it turned out to be).
Sparrowhawk
27. Rebecca Starr
Ch 47
Yes, I too was *shocked* simply shocked by this scene. Of course I should have seen it coming, but it hit me like a ton of bricks the first time through... to the point where I remember it feeling so strange to think of Siuan as Siuan, because in my head, well, she was the Amyrlin dammit. I didn't need to register her real name.

Jordan wrote this scene so well - even above his usual caliber - Siuan's awesome power/presence, even once stilled. The horror of her and Leane being stilled. The fierce pride when they stand up as the cell door is opened.

I've said it before and I'll say it again - it is *these* women who are my role models, not anyone I've met in real life... if I could be even a tenth as brave as they, it would be a privilege and an honour.

I likewise am fuzzy on KoD and Danelle, but I remember the Mesaana theory... ::ambles off to do research::

Ch 48
no real comment except that it really does bug me that Lanfear should very well know who Aviendha is, having been Kielle here, when it comes time for the Showdown at the docks in TFoH.
Sparrowhawk
28. JamesEdJones
Once again, awesome, Leigh! I'm afraid I'm not as impressed with Min as everyone else. She's the coolest frick'n female character in the series, studies philosophy, plays with knives, and always makes the GOOD choices.

...but she can see the future! Sure it's not exact, but wouldn't we all make better choices if we had some visions available for guidance. I love her as a character. She is one of my top five favorites. But that does not translate to being impressed with her wisdom. She knows what has to happen (for some of the important threads in the pattern) and goes along with it.

1 Freelancer

As for Danelle, do we have any proof anywhere that masking your ability to channel can be done to a certain degree? As far as the books are concerned, you either can be sensed and judged for your actual strength, or you are devoid of the ability. Where did RJ tell us that it could be done to make you look weaker? Without that caveat, Danelle cannot be Messana. Messana would have to be a servant or citizen of Tar Valon. I think Alviarin's efforts to find her among the Aes Sedai should be the biggest clue that she is NOT a Sister.

But, of course, if I'm wrong, please let me know (with a reference from the Creator, please).
Sparrowhawk
29. Greyhawk
This has always been a hard chapter to read.---because of the many --no don't do that moments. I was surprised at the treatment of Siuan and Leane and the killing of Alric (which is murder plain and simple--how did the 3 oaths work there. Dagger in the back, come on--can't wrap him up with the power). Also, I found the punishment harsh considering this took place after Siuan had already come clean about the big stuff, Rand exists and is the DR, etc.

Gwayn such a frustrating character. His motivations will never be entirely clear--and that may be the point. I subscribe to the view that he had more "attachment" to Elaida (although Elayne was able to shake that pretty easily) than Siuan. Also, in fighting Hammar, et. al he was supporting the rule of law--as the story is written (I have a hard time understanding how, given the actions taken by Elaida and co. it was in compliance with the law but, anyway) Jordan appears to allow that Elaida used Tower law to her advantage but did not violate it. Breaking Siuan and Leane out would have been the coup.
Luke M
30. lmelior
This is one of the better pages on the Mesaana question. Turns out the lip-tapping thing (from comment 21) is fairly common.

JamesEdJones @29
That link discusses the power hiding question. RJ has not shown the ability to partially mask strength in the OP, but neither has it been shown to be impossible. It could just be one of Mesaana's personal inventions or at least a weave she keeps to herself.
Alice Arneson
31. Wetlandernw
28. JamesEdJones

I won't give you the quotes, because they've been linked by others, but if nothing else, try this:

Lanfear disguised herself as Else Grinwell a few books back. That definitely required the ability to show some channeling ability while hiding her full strength.

Also, RJ said so. Check the links to WoTFAQ and wotmania given above.
Leigh Butler
32. leighdb
McSwan @ 16 and RobMRobM @ 17:

Elaida's coup was "legal" in the same sense that Bill Clinton did not have sex with that woman.

She paid lip service to the protocol just enough to be able to spin it as legit later, but given that half the Tower felt the need to fight and/or flee as a result, I'd say it must have been pretty darn hinky in execution (no pun intended).

I think, therefore, that if it hadn't been for Gawyn's personal animosity towards Siuan, he very well might have not bought the coup any more than the Blues did. And that is crap.
Sparrowhawk
33. Orophin2
About Alric: Does Aes Sedai have to see the person they are blocking? If not, it would have been quite simple for them to block Siuan and Leane before they killed Alric. And if Siuan was blocked before Alric's death she would not have felt it. Also, we do not know when Alric was killed. It could have happened at the same moment that Elaida crashed through the door. The surprise and shook could have masked the murder in the brief time between the entrance and the stilling. Could it not? He could have been killed after the stilling or before. Jordan is not clear on this. Also, we do not know for certain that Elaida actually killed Alric. It could have been one of the other, uh, "ladies".
Jay Dauro
34. J.Dauro
Taraboner @20

It appears they called the Tower with a minimum quorum, and did not notify the sitters who would vote against the proposal. And the proposal has to be approved with the Greater Consensus.

So maybe not totally illegal, but definitely violating the spirit of the law.
Kristen Cook
35. CeistaExiste
RE: The sling has been used. The shepherd holds the sword.

Sling refers to the Stone. The sling was used, so a rock was thrown, so the Stone has fallen.
Sparrowhawk
36. MCSwan
twosheddz @ 22

I don't really have a problem with the masons, if I'm planning a shady, barely legal Culp, and I thoughoughly expected it to piss people off, I'd want some extra muscle around, but agreed, the murder should have been a much bigger deal.
Jay Dauro
37. J.Dauro
Orophin2 @33

It cannot have been any of the ladies, or Elaida. This would raise too many questions about the Oaths. (Yes, if they are Black they don't have to follow the Oaths, but neither can they prove they don't have to follow them without revealing they are Black.)

But it could have been done by a Warder.

(Edit - I should learn how to spell. Or at least type.)
Sparrowhawk
38. JamesEdJones
30 Emily *sp

Thanks. Like the link and the references in it. Appearantly, I spent too much time reading about the Norse, and King Arthur parallels, and not enough time about conspiracies on the FAQ. I'll be sure to revisit it.
AJ MacPherson
39. Mackey62
I never really had that big of problem with Gawyn's reaction here. He has had one thought beat into his head from the time Elayne was born, to protect her. He has continually beat his head on the wall of misdirection that Siuan's answers and evasions to his questions. She is preventing him from doing what he was born to do.

Second, he does up hold the law as the deposing of Siuan was legal. (Yes the intentions were not good, but it was all done legally.) And this will hopefully lead him to Elayne.

Third, Gawyn is the perfect example of reacting based on the information he gets and not talking with anybody else. If he would be in a position to talk with anyone, he would come off as bad as everyone sees him. I can't wait to the reaction of "Rand killed my mother" that is coming down the way. (But if everyone talked in this series, one book could wrap up the entire 14 books).

Finally, Gawyn always ends up doing the right thing that fans want him to do. Let's Min go. Doesn't report Egwene to the other AS. Leading the Younglings and saving as many as possible against the Aiel and Asha'men. He does the right thing.
T C
40. Freelancer
RE: Alric's death

Consider where he dies. In the Amyrlin's anteroom, where Leane is bound ang gagged with Air. To me, that means he's stopped while rushing to help her. He wouldn't have been responding like that until Siuan is furious with outrage, which means after Elaida's group had thrown open her door. Surely the shield was employed the moment they saw her. That easily allows for her to not have felt him die.

But it leaves the question of who, and why. The who has to be either the Black Ajah or a forsaken, or the Black Ajah under direction of a forsaken. Anyone in the coup party not of the Black would certainly oppose murdering a warder. My opinion is that Mesaana has all of the party that isn't Black under Compulsion, and uses it to convince them that everything done there was acceptable. That isn't likely to hold strongly for long, which provides support for the later treatment of Joline and Shemerin, to reduce their credibility or access to the Hall. The why is admittedly a plot device, you can't have an enraged warder around right now, so snuff him.

I don't normally like it when folks toss out Compulsion as a rote explanation for otherwise unexpected behavior, but it's hard to imagine a reasonable hypothesis for this scenario without it.

JamesEdJones@28

Sorry, at work so don't have my deeper notes handy, but yes, RJ has given the nod to partially masking strength in the power. The reference includes Lanfear acting as Else Grinwell to point the girls at the false Tear evidence, where Egwene would have surely been blown away by her strength.
Sparrowhawk
41. RobMRobM
Leigh - I read it as real legal not Clinton legal - i.e., minimum number of sitters and unanimous - but horribly contrary to precedent and proportionality (i.e., Siuan and Leane should have been arrested, tried and given a proper penalty appropriate to the transgression rather than immediately stilled). Furthermore, treating being blue as a virtual crime is certainly something that should have been decided by more than a handpicked junta. Wish I could think of a better analogy....Rob
Sparrowhawk
42. JohnDoe
As Orophin2 said @33, being shielded would block your warder being killed right? I just thought of when Elayne was kidnapped by the Black Ajah and she could still feel Birgitte so there's that cog. However, Birgitte is the only female warder so that might be a factor too.


My big question about the coup d'etat was that Aes Sedai killed each other right? What would be so different from the Salidar rebels attacking the White Tower? Egwene said she didn't want Aes Sedai blood to be shed in an attack on Tar Valon but it already has. Anything that's started in blood ends with blood.

That was just my 2 cents. Spend it how you want.

Thanks for another good commentary. Adios, y'all.
T C
43. Freelancer
RobMRobM

Not to approach the political, but I think that Leigh's meaning by "Clinton legal" matches yours of "real legal"; that a particular parsing of words allows it to barely slip under the barrier of credulity.

If you squint your eyes real tight, and plug your ears, and jump up and down shouting, sure.
Sparrowhawk
44. Lsana
Gawyn is an idiot. Apparently it runs in the family. I could understand it if he decided to side with Elaida, though I would have thought it a bad decision. However, the way that he actually did things, first siding with Elaida and then helping Suian and Leane escape, was what led directly to the civil war. Congratulations, Gawyn. Pretty much all the death and destruction that follows can be laid on your head.

Incidentally, assuming that Egwene gets her wish and marries and bonds Gawyn, I wonder how the rest of the Aes Sedai will feel about that. There will be pardons after the end of the war, of course, but a pardon is one thing, making an unstable nicompoop the Amyrlin's warder is quite another. Makes me suspect that either Egwene won't be Amyrlin at the end, or Gawyn will end up with a "Redemption = Death" storyline.
Antoni Ivanov
45. tonka
In his blog, RJ clarified that Alric ran into the anteroom and was stabbed only a moment before Siuan was led out. He is not yet dead. Her awareness of his stabbing was overwhelmed by her shock at being arrested
Sparrowhawk
46. JamesEdJones
44 Lsana

All we've been told is: one of Gawyn's paths lead to him being bonded by Egwene and the other leads to him killing her. Then, one of his paths leads to a violent death, and the other to a long life and death in bed.

But we're never told which corresponds to which. I'm in the camp that thinks being bonded will lead to a violent death. Yay!
Antoni Ivanov
47. tonka
three oaths are

1. To speak no word that is not true
2. To make no weapon with which one man may kill another
3. Never to use the One Power as a weapon except against Shadowspawn, or in the last extreme defense of her life, the life of her Warder or another Aes Sedai

You are all forgetting one thing. The oaths prevent you from using the *One Power* as a weapon.Any Aes Sedai can stick a knife in whoever they want for whatever reason they want.
Sparrowhawk
48. RobMRobM
Free - I see a difference between the two (while sympathetic to Leigh's intent). Clintonian is using careful language to make something appear lawful when it is not. (Kind of like what the AS do all the time to avoid the proscription on lying, as I think of it.) Elaidian is do something that technically complies with the bare minimum required by law but then violates longstanding policies, precedent, fairness, etc.

R
Sparrowhawk
49. HArai
I used to be convinced that Alric's murder proves direct Black action in the takeover. In fact I used to be sure the fact that no one important appeared to even care signaled the fact all of Elaida's group were Black. Now I just see it as terminal White Tower disease. Aes Sedai so convinced of their own righteousness that they can justify murder well enough to satify the Oaths.

As for Gawyn's behaviour: Spend enough time treating a young man like a mushroom, you end up with a man that thinks like one. Any problems Siuan, Elayne, or Elaida had or will have with Gawyn I honestly think they brought on themselves. Egwene at least owns up to it when she doesn't tell him things. The rest of them spend their time jerking him around.

I can't think of a single scene between Rand's accidental palace visit and the Tower takeover where Gawyn (and Galad) didn't get either false information or no information. Heck I don't even blame him for his hate for Rand - he spent the whole time with a pack of women that have opinions ranging from "Rand al'Thor is an idiot child" to "The Dragon Reborn is the cause of all evil".
Sometimes I think the real taint in the series doesn't come from touching saidin or Mashadar, it comes from touching the White Tower.
T C
50. Freelancer
I'm with you, RobMRobM. I just sadly think many others really believe that Clintonian = Elaidian, as you just described it.
Lannis .
52. Lannis
Did anyone find Siuan's comment "You must be taken by the Dragon!" a little odd? IIRC, we haven't heard this anywhere else.

Toryx @ 5: Totally agree with you that Asmodean's one of the most interesting Forsaken... some strange shades of grey, there. And Leigh's comment about his honesty--yes, I think he's just being bold, a conversation about madness with the Dragon Reborn, but at least he's treating Rand like a person, not a tool to save the world.

Great recap, Leigh! :)
Leigh Butler
53. leighdb
RobMRobM:

Except, Clinton did not technically break any laws either. Not concerning Monica Lewinsky, anyway.

But okay. I was mostly just trying to be amusing, there. Actually I think a better analogy for what Elaida did to legality re: the coup is the bullshit way Congress tried to impeach Clinton for it afterwards.
T C
54. Freelancer
Lannis

I agree with you that it's odd to hear Siuan make that reference, especially when she's actually now involved with the Dragon Reborn. But the phrase isn't new with her usage. It's first used in Emond's Field in TEotW.
Sparrowhawk
55. RobMRobM
Leigh@53. That's it exactly. R
Sparrowhawk
56. HArai
The things she saw were very rarely as clear in meaning as those two, and she had never before seen that fluttering back and forth, as though not even the viewing could tell which would be the true future. Worse, she had a feeling near to certainty that it was what she had done this day that had turned Gawyn toward those two possibilities.

She shivers, thinking that it’s too late to change what she had done, and hopes it was worth it.


Does anyone else love this bit from Min? It seems to me that a person with her ability would want to distance herself "I see these terrible things but it's got nothing to do with me, they just happen" but instead she's claiming responsibility for her actions and hoping they are worth it.
Michael Catapano
57. hoping
ceistaexiste
Right. Makes sense. Thanks

We also see Cabriana sense her warder while being shielded in the Semi torturing scene in LOC
Sparrowhawk
58. Snuboi
I remember being so mad when I first read the chapter about the tower coup. I rushed through it so fast because I just kept getting more and more pissed. I still to this day almost 16 years later have a hard time making it through.

On another note I have always taken the masons to be proof that Danelle was at least black ajah if not Mesaana. In later POV's Elaida has always struck me as being shocked that anyone would dare to defy her and her little crew, while having the mason's ready on hand for muscle seems to show that at least someone was expecting rebellion. I assumed Mesaana wanted them on hand to MAKE SURE things turned violent especially after her talk of wanting Aes Sedai to hate each other in their bones.
Sparrowhawk
59. temple5150
Could it be possible that Siuane couldn't feel Alric's death because she was shielded from the source when it happened?
Don Johnson
60. Paracelsus
A continuity problem with Lanfear:

Did anybody else notice this or think it odd? In TFOH, Lanfear rushes down to the docks after she discovers Rand is sleeping with Aviendha. Yet Lanfear still does not know who Aviendha is. She strikes at all the women looking for Aviendha.

And here is the quote Leigh just included in her blog where Rand basically told Lanfear who Aviendha was. Surely Lanfear would have remembered considered she would have been at least a little jealous of another woman spending so much time with Rand.
Keille (Lanfear) says:
“Tell him, my Lord Dragon. I have a feeling you know something of the dangers of scorning a woman. That Aiel girl who follows you about, glaring. I hear you belong to another. Perhaps she feels scorned.”

“I doubt it, Mistress,” he said dryly. “Aviendha would plant a knife in my ribs if she believed I had thought of her that way.”

I still can't believe Lanfear is that stupid not to know who Aviendha is. This also reminds me of the scene in the TGH where Lanfear completes ignores Min snuggling in bed with Rand.
Sparrowhawk
61. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Lsana @44
Actually, the traditional Aes Sedai methodology for bringing a dangerous uncontrollable male to heel is by bonding them. Note the Red bonding Asha'man, and Alanna bonding Rand. Once bonded they'll consider him safely collared. As the Cairhien segment of the KoD prologue puts it. Who knows, some of Egwene's better, acquired qualities might bleed through.
Sparrowhawk
62. Landro
My loony theory is that Mesaana is masquerading as Laras. Why?

Well, as we've seen with Moggy, Lanfear and Semmy it's not that hard to pretend to be a non-channeler and Lanfear and Moggy have also proven that they can suppress their ego and pretend to be fat/ugly for the sake of disguise.

Laras helping Min get Siuan and Leane out of jail certainly helps divide the AS even further which just so happens to be Mesaana's objective.

But what really made me suspect her was that she protects Eggy after her capture, thus helping her resist being broken. Eggy appears to get regular novice chores so there seems to be no particular reason for Laras to protect her, but she does so by preventing scullions from playing pranks on her which seems to be a common practice towards novices.

What speaks against Laras being Mesaana is that she also tries to protect the supergirls after they return from Falme. But then again she may have instructions to do so or it might be part of building/maintaining her cover.

Feel free to debunk my loony theory ;-)
Sparrowhawk
63. CTyler
I always felt like Jordan was teasing us when he would say in interviews/q&a's that we should know enough to know who Mesaana's cover person was. Then during my re-read last month it hit me like a ton of bricks that Danelle HAS to be the person. And here's some more that logically flows from that - Danelle is not BA. She's dead, and Mesaana has taken her place. Hence Alviarin does not recognize her fully when Shaidar Haran unmasks her - if Danelle was BA, Alviarin would know her, as we know that she knows all the Black sisters. So, this means Alviarin probably didn't realize the significance of the masons, or never realized that there was some extra muscle there. If so she'd wonder why Danelle did that.

A brown sister is the perfect cover for Mesaana, as they are basically expected to be spacey and detached, covering up the inevitable mistakes Mesaana would make (not recognizing an old friend, forgetting details of previous experiences Danelle would have had, etc.).

----------------------

Separate thought. How does Asmo know the Prophecies of the Dragon? They obviously were written well after he and the other Forsaken were sealed up. Did Ishy host a "So You've Been Sealed Up for 3,000 years" seminar for them after they got out? I think that would have been amusing to witness - "They fight with WHAT these days?!?! Swords and Spears? You're joking right Ish?"
Michael Catapano
64. hoping
Landro
Hasn't Laras been around before we see the rest of the forsaken unbound? That would make it unlikely for her to be Mesanna. She would have to be real good at illusion and know her history and friends if she eliminated laras and took her place.
Sparrowhawk
65. Tony Zbaraschuk
Yes, the Tower coup is one of the most brilliant chapters in what is (I still think) the best of the WOT books. And, yes, Elaida is a nincompoop.

(I would have loved to see the Hall of the Tower meeting when Siuan gave them the report... did nobody ask "And which Aes Sedai has already managed to attach herself to the Dragon Reborn, and what was his name again?" I suspect that Siuan's tactics here may have been the final nail in her coffin when it came to P.O.ing enough Sitters to vote with Elaida. (She tends to be a rather headstrong sort of person, running people over with her plans and not explaining them -- compare her explanation to Gareth Bryne in Salidar of their clash in Caemlyn, in tFH -- and I don't imagine that that goes down very well with experienced Aes Sedai.)

The Black Ajah probably did have a supporting role in the coup (with the head of their High Council as the coup's second-in-command, how could it not?) but I don't think it was only Black Ajah members who supported Siuan's overthrow. If the Black Ajah could have gotten a quorum in the Hall, they probably would have taken over the Tower centuries ago...

I don't think Mesaana is hiding as Laras -- Laras has to spend too much time running around supervising the kitchens; a sister has a lot more free time available. Danelle is still the best bet.
Sparrowhawk
66. Tony Zbaraschuk
As far as Lanfear not recognizing Aviendha later, I've never had a problem with it. First off, Lanfear's ego forces her to take Rand's reassurance that the Aiel girl isn't interested in him, so she files any details under "finished business" and moves on, not caring about things like detailed facial appearances. Secondly, when she starts throwing lightning around she's not sure _which_ Aiel-dressed girl at the docks (Aviendha or Egwene) is the target she should be mad at (and there are probably a few dozen Maidens around as well to further confuse the issue, haven't reached that point in my re-read yet.)
Antoni Ivanov
67. tonka
@63. CTyler
Separate thought. How does Asmo know the Prophecies of the Dragon? They obviously were written well after he and the other Forsaken were sealed up. Did Ishy host a "So You've Been Sealed Up for 3,000 years" seminar for them after they got out? I think that would have been amusing to witness - "They fight with WHAT these days?!?! Swords and Spears? You're joking right Ish?"

He could have questioned some random Gleeman or he might have gone to some Library (He is one of the Forsaken, if he wants he can go to the White Tower Library and no one can stop him really) . Even some of the Two River Folks know some of the prophecies and the part he quotes is especially famous.


@ 65 Tony Zbaraschuk
I don't think it was only Black Ajah members who supported Siuan's overthrow. If the Black Ajah could have gotten a quorum in the Hall, they probably would have taken over the Tower centuries ago...

And you are right - Doesine, Pevara, Saerin and Yukiri all vote for deposing Suian and electing Elaida as new Amyrlin and we know for sure that they are not Black Ajah (since they are the Black Ajah hunters)

Of all the Sitters not informed, all but Seaine left and joined the Salidar Aes Sedai btw. (that if you are wondering what about the last of the Black Ajah Hunters)
kori lockwood
68. kori
On the whole Lanfear not recognizing Avienda, I have always let that go as a crazy ex blind with rage type o'deal. and yes Asmodean is the coolest of all the forsaken I personally love the gloomy background music he provides later.

PS lovin the reread.
Mitchell Swan
69. mcswan
Tony@66

I didn't buy it when it happened and I don't buy it now.

Rand can say whatever he wants, Lanfear *sees* the two of them basically joined at the hip.

Trust me, Lanfear would see Aviendha as a threat and not likely forget her.

I'm convinced it was a Jordan misstep.
Antoni Ivanov
70. tonka
I am with Tony btw. Lanfear didn't pay attention and beside that she was cold with rage. Why would she have to remember one girl that was around Rand a while ago.
T C
71. Freelancer
Laras cannot be Mesaana.

Laras, with fewer chins and a less spherical figure, was in the Tower kitchens when Siuan and Moiraine were Accepted, at least, as shown in New Spring. Siuan would recognize her.

And speaking of Danelle being Brown (we were, weren't we?), how odd is it for a Brown to be involved in violently deposing an Amyrlin Seat? I can see a green, if they believe it needs to be done. Even a yellow. But white and brown (and gray) are not the ajahs you'd expect to participate in this kind of act. Once again, from that perspective, the two odd ladies out would be Alviarin and Danelle.

alreadymad@61

How do you call it "traditional", when it has been a matter of only months since Alanna bonded Rand, and the Reds bonding Asha'man has been approached, but we haven't yet seen it happen?

As to Gawyn facing punishment for his part in the Tower uprising, I don't see it. Assuming that the Salidar rebels win the Tower, how many of them will have known of Gawyn's part? And how much did Gawyn and Egwene speak of it? Other than a remnant of Tower AS, I'm not sure anyone but Min, Siuan and Leane know, and they are grateful to him for letting them go. The Tower AS last saw him as trying to stay loyal to Elaida, even though she's trying to get rid of him. So I'm really not sure who it is that would call him to task, or suggest punishment.
Bill Siegel
72. ubxs113
Thanks Leigh, great job as always!
Blake Engholm
73. UncrownedKing
@69
I'm convinced it was a Jordan misstep.

Blasphemy!!! Get the rope!

It very well could be a mistake. But, I think its Lanfear in a I'm the hottest woman that has ever walked this planet trip and is so far up her own ass that theres no way she would give it a second thought.
Blake Engholm
74. UncrownedKing
@69
I'm convinced it was a Jordan misstep.

Blasphemy!!! Get the rope!

It very well could be a mistake. But, I think its Lanfear in a I'm the hottest woman that has ever walked this planet trip and is so far up her own ass that theres no way she would give it a second thought.
Sparrowhawk
75. Shawn R. Johnson
My thoughts on the Andor Royal family situation is that they are all pretty messed up pyscologicaly.

For instance Gawyn is obviously torn up between his loyalty to the tower and his family and his inability to adequately provide for his family as I think he feels like his role is the provider and father figure do to the lack on of one since he was young. This tear provides the genesis for his rage over over the Elayne and and his mother being lost and or dead even though he has information that one is alive.

Elayn is a fairly simple illustration of someone who has little self control. Especially now that she can't control her emotions at all. A good example of this is when she is captured by darkfriends and doesn't even show a hint of fear, though she is the worst possible situation she can be in at the moment.

Galad is simple also at least to someone who is a fan of Star Trek. He is a a Vulcan type character, a person of logic with little to no emotional response. So his decsion to join the whitecloaks is based purely on it being his best option, according to his logic.

Finally Morgas is probably the second most messed up of the whole family. I mean obviously some of it is due to Rahvins influence on her and her obviously screwed up memory of the time under his compulsion heavy influence. But I definitely think her aversion to Tallanvor is mostly due to her long period of queenly investor on the throne of Andor and his age of course. Although that might have to do with all her relationships prior to this being men who are older.

So in synopsis, the whole family messed up. However some like Elayn and Galad are better able to handle their problems due to better emotional response and decision making.
j p
76. sps49
Gawyn has always appeared childish to me. Wah, where's my sister? Wah, where's my crush? They're out Fighting Evil and Saving the World, why keep crying when they are obviously On A (Secret) Mission?

Almost as stupid as Elaida, but with less power. They must drink out of lead winecups in Caemlyn.

Speaking of Elaida- isn't anyone in the Tower thinking "dang, that elaida, what an idiot she is!"?
Sparrowhawk
77. LindaL
I was going to mention this in TDR, but I think that Jordan still had not decided what the Yellow Ajah was “for” at this point in the series.

At no point in the first four books are there any Yellows out healing people. Moiraine, Verin, and Anaiya have all healed on screen, but no one who was a sister of the yellow. Min saw wounded sisters, servants, and warders in her visions of the coup, but we don’t have any textual evidence that the Yellow were healing people after the Tower coup. Why not? It’s almost as though they don’t exist until Nynaeve decides that she wants to be in the Yellow ajah. Even in TDR, she was impersonating a Green sister, not a Yellow sister.

The only reason I mention it is that I think Jordan hadn’t decided what the purpose was for the Yellow, White, and Grey ajahs. When he needed a motivation for Nynaeve beyond protecting the duopotamians and stalking Lan, the Yellow was waiting for her mad healing skillz.

It doesn’t really bother me, but I’m interested in hearing what others think about this idea.

Also,(re Gawyn) I've known quite a few guys who thought they were totally tough and worldly who could not really handle the consequences of their actions. I have a lot of sympathy for him.
Sparrowhawk
78. toryx
The whole question of why Lanfear doesn't know who Aviendha seems simple to me: Lanfear considers pretty much everyone beneath her. The Forsaken are just devices for her to push around for her own satisfaction. Aes Sedai she thinks of as children. I imagine Aiel women who can wield the power seem even less than that to her.

Why would she pay much attention to Aviendha aside from noticing that she follows Rand around? Lanfear knows that she's commonly the most beautiful woman anyone has ever seen and she probably can hardly tell one Aiel from another; in her former life they were simply servants and now they're just children playing with spears.

Once she finds out that Rand's slept with Aviendha, however, Lanfear simply loses herself in rage. There's no reason for her to bother remembering exactly which woman Aviendha is. They're all the same to her, and she can kill every Aiel she reaches before she tears Aviendha to shreds.
sandi vogel
79. sinfulcashew
Leigh-
When poetry was mentioned, I went back looking for rhyming lines.....then thought.....huh?
THEN thought of the Japanese poetry of which I couldn't remember the name.
Thanks to all the Haiku fans for refreshing my memory.

Re. Gawyn's infantile? behavior. Perhaps as he 'grows up' through the rest of the stories, he changes?
It's possible.

I kind of liked Asmodean throughout his tenure in the stories.
Don't know why, maybe he didn't really like being made into what he was?
Just fishing here.
Sparrowhawk
80. HArai
@76

If as soon as I was old enough to understand what giving my word really meant, I was asked to swear to give up my own life to protect my sister - and I willingly and honestly did so, I too would be totally pissed if:

a) The authorities responsible for my sister's education and welfare repeatedly came up with:
"Your sister? Oh, we seem to have misplaced her. No idea what happened to her. Piss off."

b) The sister in question, when asked about her (LONG!) absences responded with "You're an icky boy and you're not the boss of me and piss off."

Gawyn is quite justified in being upset. He understands duty, authority and obligations. If Elayne and Siuan had said "Elayne is carrying out duties to the White Tower. We believe they are urgent enough to justify the risks. Your presence would increase those risks so you can't go with her. We don't expect you to like it, but that's the way it has to be." I suspect Gawyn would have reacted very differently during the Tower takeover and after.

Why keep crying? Because the one person in the world he's supposed to protect is gone and no one will even admit it. And now the girl you have the hots for is also gone, and no one will admit it.
T C
81. Freelancer
sps49@76

Tiny problem with your analysis. Gawyn is Never told what Elayne/Egwene are up to. He's told they're off doing penance on an unnamed farm, which he of course doesn't believe (hmm, indicates he isn't a dunce), then he's told it's White Tower business, none of his. Of course he's upset, and with right.

When Min finally tells him something, it doesn't include where they are, and isn't all that specific. It isn't long afterward that Gawyn hears that his mother and sister are dead at the hands of the Dragon Reborn.

Gawyn feels some obligation to the Younglings, or he'd be off trying to find and kill Rand. Then he runs into Egwene and promises her he won't. But he still won't help Rand, either. I can't hold much of this against him. Especially if he was under Compulsion at some time just before the Tower uprising. (Of which there is no evidence, just conjecture)
Sparrowhawk
82. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Freelancer @71
No we haven't seen Asha'man bonded to Reds yet. We do however see Cadsuane encouraging and outright blackmailing Flinn etal into being bonded. You don't suppose they did it because they were running low on Warders, now, did you?
Take note that none of the Aes Sedai actually show remorse at having the Dragon Reborn bonded, only that it was done without permission. Because he was already bonded, Kiruna's reaction was that he should have been brought to heel.
They simply don't like the idea of men running around beyond their power. Now that that definition includes Asha'man, off they go to bond them since gentling them is no longer valid. And while "traditional" might not be the best word for it, 2 of the three Aes Sedai groups resorted to this method. Meaning to Aes Sedai thinking this IS the best way to deal with them.
Why go off on a tangent about Rand and the Asha'man anyway? They are only contemporary examples. If you look at all the current examples of new Warders (excluding the only female, Birgitte and admittedly comprising primarily of Asha'man), the sisters generally consider them safely collared. As Samitsu in Cairhien thought during her PoV at the KoD Prologue(which you left out of my quote).
Bottom line is, bonding is the ultimate trump card that Aes Sedai have to play in dealing with men. They can be very picky about it, but once done, the man is considered safely collared and can be ordered to sit quietly and roll over. Aes Sedai rationalize this by saying it is part of the bond that the Warder can be forced to obey. In truth it is a hypocritical form of Compulsion. Furthermore, the Aes Sedai would most likely welcome the bonding of a talented (if a bit unstable) and potentially influential and important man like Gawyn. Note that Mat and Perrin themselves have received several propositions to be Warders. As for Gawyn, the general consensus would be that Egwene should be able to hold his leash.
Antoni Ivanov
83. tonka
This trick of compulsion through the bond cannot be used against a man who can channel. Alanna tried to when she bonded Rand but she failed. The reason that Jahar is so "obedient" with Merise is because they are close and he is her Warder and she is teaching him (of manners mostly :p)

Rand has 50 Asha'man who bonded sisters.So he will allow 50 Asha'man to be bonded by Aes Sedai (from Egwene's fraction) .It all brings it to matter of equality between the Black and the White Tower which no Aes Sedai likes but that's the basic idea "Guardians balanced the Servants"
Sparrowhawk
84. tacoma
Regarding Alric's slaying and Suian's failure to note it... (and noting that this might be my own personal retcon)

Is it possible that Suian was "fuzzing" the link? I think that's the term we learn about later once Rand and is bonded to everyone. The obvious question is why she would be doing that. My only thought is that there probably isn't much call (normally) for an Amyrlin's Warder in TV when she's hanging out all day in her study/quarters. Maybe she gives him a life w/o her constant presence so he can go out and enjoy himself a bit (or so that she doesn't have to deal with whatever runs through the bond--drunkeness ala Elayne/Birgitte--or horniness ala Rand+whoever->Alanna as he's enjoying himself).

(Five minutes later) Erg. I guess the "rushing in to save the day"/killed at the last moment thing makes more sense. Not nearly as considerate, though... *shrug*
Richard Fife
85. R.Fife
Videos from JordanCon now available for download At Portalstones

Honest, it isn't a rickroll, unless seeing me play Mat is a Rickroll.

For anyone interested. And, for extra funny, that is my kefka-ringer going off at about 1:30 in the opening ceremony. My boss was trying to get a hold of me.
Sparrowhawk
86. MattG
I find it hard to accept that I am the first person pedantic enough to point out that chap-ter for-ty se-ven is six syllables.
Jim Adams
87. dubjazz
The Wheel of Time spins
With fantastic imaging
My mind is reeling.
Jim Adams
88. dubjazz
Unmask the Chosen
Hidden deep in the Tower
She weaves illusion.
Jim Adams
89. dubjazz
To precis is art
Leigh Butler clever painter
Words are neatly stroked.
John Massey
90. subwoofer
This is my last wade in about Gawyn. You can make all the excuses in the world for him but the end results speak. He killed Hammar. His teacher whom he respected and trusted.

You'd think that maybe he would of said "Hammar, why are you protecting the Amyrlin?"
Hammar "she's the Amyrlin young padawan." (does anyone see the similarities to Episode III?!!)
Gawyn "oki doki then."

You'd think as a person who is royalty, he'd have better respect for due process.

As far as him being fed drek and wanting to lash out about it... most people, even rulers/kings look up and respect Aes Sedai. When they are told something that may seem like evasion, they still have to respect what is being told to them. Unless they are Whitecloaks- who are all knobs- then it is kill first, ask questions later, and if it still doesn't make sense, scrawl the Dragonfang on something and call it a day....

Gawyn's actions do not, by any stretch of the imagination, seem congruent with who he is. Unless he is possessed. But I don't see his head rotating or spitting pea soup so there goes that theory... but he does have a thing for Egwene... hmmm...
T C
91. Freelancer
Possessed, Compelled...

A rose by any other name would force one's hand.
Sparrowhawk
92. CTyler
Gawyn has always frustrated me as a character, especially during re-reads. He starts out very likeable - friendly to Rand, respectful of Galad (in a way very contrasting to Elayne) and all-around good guy. I picture him as the archetypal starting varsity QB with the good looks, square jaw, blond hair and a letterman's jacket on.

Then it seems like he goes off to "college" and gets all angsty and emo and decides to quit football, smoke clove cigarettes and dress in black and listen to a lot of old Cure records. The fact that he seems unaware that a) his sister is in fact alive and pressing her (tortorously verbose) claim to the crown and could you, know, use him right about now; and b) his Mom was in fact being Compulsed by Rahvin and Rand actually saved his people and killed the bad guy for him, is *facepalm* frustrating.

Since Elayne is my least favorite character (due mainly but not solely to the hundreds of pages of Andoran Successional Politics we get subjected to while A LOT MORE IMPORTANT STUFF IS GOING ON), and Gawyn's right up there, let's just say I would be buying the white wrap for my sword if I were in Caemlyn these days.
Sparrowhawk
93. Wolfmage
34 @ J.Dauro

"It appears they called the Tower with a minimum quorum, and did not notify the sitters who would vote against the proposal. And the proposal has to be approved with the Greater Consensus."

The lack of notification given to the Hall is the key here, and that is what makes it an illegitimate coup. It's like calling a company shareholder meeting to depose the Board whilst breaching the notice requirements under Corporations Law, just so you can ensure only your minority of sympathetic shareholders are available to vote. It's a grievous breach of process and makes the decision completely illegitimate. Now if the Hall were notified but simply didn't show up, that would be different, but that's not what happened. In this case it was a clandestine, emergency meeting held specifically to circumvent the requirement of Greater Consensus by the Hall.

And this is to say nothing of the fact there was known Black Ajah involvement and probable Forsaken involvement, which obviously invalidates the result regardless. So even if you dispute the procedural irregularities, breaches of ethics, convention and propriety, you can't just ignore that fact.

Gawyn may not know about the latter issue, but he is still exercising incredibly poor judgement, dominated by his puerile, emotional response. Having a tanty about Elayne's whereabouts is no excuse for him to interject himself into an internal conflagration at the Tower. His ostensible reason doesn't even make any sense - it is only pure chance that he gets to ask Siuan again about where she is - logically his role in the affair basically guarantees he is kept in the dark.

Also, for the supposed protector of Elayne, he sure is showing mighty contempt for Elayne's own choices and faith in the Siuan, as Min remarks. Of course, Elayne and Siuan could have both done more to set his worry at ease, but there are responses avalable to him to elicit answers and severe ties with Siuan which are several orders of magnitudes more sensible than playing a key role in cementing the Tower coup. FFS, it makes Galad's choice to run off and join the bloody Whitecloaks look like pure minted gold rationality by contrast.
Sparrowhawk
94. Wolfmage
On the subject of Gawyn being a twit, does anyone else find his supposedly "overwhelming" love for Egwene highly contrived.

I mean we have all these awesome Wise Ones who are strong, compelling women with Husbands and Sister Wives who are similarly strong and compelling, but supposedly they never know love or receive love from someone so great as Gawyn and Egwene? Not Amys, Bair, Melaine, or anyone? Only in half-remembered tale of this super Wise One is it even known that this is possible, out of all the accumulated lore of the Dream Walkers?

But then along comes doofus "wunderkind" Gawyn, whose own dreams condemn him as someone with a Mills and Boon fantasia idea of intimacy and relationships, and he supposed loves Egwene so much more than any other on-screen character who can enter TAR dreamspace? It's stupid frankly and undermines the integrity of far more compelling characters than Egwene and Gawyn.

It's also especially discordant given that he feels this whilst apparently believing that Rand killed Morgase, despite assurance from his super lover Egwene, and the knowledge of his sister affection for Rand.
Captain Hammer
95. Randalator
Orophin2 @33

if Siuan was blocked before Alric's death she would not have felt it.

Where did you get that from? Blocking a channeler does not affect the Warder bond in any way. Rand can still feel Alanna close by while being blocked in LoC, ch. 55, she can still feel his injuries.


tacoma @84

Is it possible that Suian was "fuzzing" the link?

No. If she had done that Alric would not have known that something is wrong. And even if her suddenly vanishing from inside his head had alarmed him, he wouldn't have known where to find her because she had, well, vanished.

As was already mentioned, Jordan explained in his blog that Alric was stabbed the same moment when Siuan was deposed by Elaida. The shock masked him receiving the wound but not his death as he was still dying when Siuan saw him


re: Laras as Mesaana

No way. Mesaana is thought to pose as Aes Sedai because of the following reasons:

- Aes Sedai can go wherever they want whenever they want in the Tower
- Aes Sedai can vanish for longer periods of time without anyone growing suspicious
- Aes Sedai can influence Tower affairs
- Aes Sedai who have been out of the Tower for a long time and don't have close friends can easily be replaced

Laras is Mistress of the Kitchens. That means she is working in the kitchens from the very early morning till long after sunset. She is constantly surrounded by other people and well known since she has been around for over twenty years. All in all it is absolutely impossible that she could replaced unnoticed, take enough time off from her job to do forsaken-y things or that she could have any significant influence on Tower affairs to pull the strings from the shadow.


Wolfmage @93

The lack of notification given to the Hall is the key here, and that is what makes it an illegitimate coup.

We hear from several Aes Sedai from both sides that the coup was adhering to the law as written but violated its spirit.

So the coup was NOT illegitimate. As evidenced by Egwene's raising Tower Law has many loopholes. In this case deposing of an Amyrlin requires at least X sitters to start the process and the greater consensus is needed for approval. The required X sitters were present and obviously they approved with greater consensus.

The spirit of the law would most likely have been that the minimum number was just given to prevent action when too many sitters were unavailable but that every available sitter would have to be notified. But if the need to notify had not been specified (just like the requirement for a candidate for the Amyrlin seat to be Aes Sedai was only implied) Elaida could go through with her plan as she only violated custom.

If the coup really had been illegitimate, no Aes Sedai would have supported Elaida.
Sparrowhawk
96. ValanVinyl
On the subject of Lanfear:
I personally have never had a problem with her not knowing Aviendha or her dismissal of Min at the end of tGH because *drum roll*

LANFEAR IS F*CKING INSANE

and therefore has no need to be rational.
Sparrowhawk
97. Wolfmage
The coup is obviously illegitimate because it was impossible without Black Ajah involvement.

However, we segued into this discussion as part of the sub-issue of what is known to Gawyn and other Aes Sedai about the legality and legitimacy of the coup. (Note these two are not necessarily the same thing). I still maintain that notice is a fundamental procedural requirement for any kind of legitimate binding meeting. So even if it was NOT written specifically into Tower Law, it certainly affects the legitimacy of the usurpation. No two ways about it - it had a massive democratic deficit.

But we don't even have evidence for exactly what Tower Law is on the finer point of legality. We only have supposition of various Aes Sedai about the legality of Siuan being disposed and Elaida being raised by the Hall. But as has been demonstrated time and time again, Aes Sedai often don't know their own laws and can be mistake about key points of fact.

You've got to bear in mind that in both primitive and developed legal systems, custom and convention can be just as important as any code or statute of rules to what is legal. So don't make the mistake of thinking only codified law counts as law.

I just don't think we can say one way or another. Certainly just because Cadsuane called Elaida a lawful Amyrlin does not settle exactly what Tower Law actually means. Fact is, no Brown Ajah expert has ever given their full opinion on whether the actions taken were in compliance with the law or not, and Browns are represented at Salidar as well.

Just as in our world, the opinion of a fair number of Aes Sedai on what the law is is likely to be worthless as against a single expert opinion from a lawyer / Brown Ajah scholar.

"If the coup really had been illegitimate, no Aes Sedai would have supported Elaida."

I can just as easily use the same appeal to authority to say that obviously a lot was wrong with it or otherwise the Tower wouldn't have split, so that really gets us nowhere. The broader point here is that Aes Sedai are not bound by anything to be in compliance with Tower Law other than internal Tower discipline, hierarchy and the power of their professional ethics. That some supported Elaida and some didn't says nothing about the legality or legitimacy of the coup by itself.

The three oaths say nothing about obeying Tower Law, and even if they did, the limitations of the oaths would allow Aes Sedai to break the law with impunity if they were ignorant of it. Aes Sedai politics is remarkably anarchic - they are actually governed almost purely by the lines of authority, which are struck through a delicate balance between the two main institutions: the Amyrlin and the Hall, intermediated by the Ajahs. Nothing says that all Aes Sedai are compelled to obey the law.
Sparrowhawk
98. ValanVinyl
On Alric's murder:
I have literally never noticed this before on account that Alric is mentioned 2 or 3 times throughout the series (if I'm not mistaken.) I have developed no emotional attachment too him at all and kind of took his death in stride with my shock at Suian's deposal... But nice catch anyway.

On Gawyn: I bloody like him. I can't judge him at all for his decisions. Suian is complete bitch to him. E and E are gone without a trace. He was raised to UPHOLD the law and he must believe to an extent just like Galad does, the Law is the Law. Everyone says Rand killed his Mother, and I would believe it too if the Dragon Reborn had just conquered my city. He's a great character and I have a feeling his return to awesomeness will be coming soon IMHO.

On Mesaana:
No idea. sure Danelle.


and a side note:
I (numerous profane and derogatory terms) hate Elayne.
Sparrowhawk
99. Tony Zbaraschuk
>As to Gawyn facing punishment for his part in the
>Tower uprising, I don't see it. Assuming that the
>Salidar rebels win the Tower, how many of them will
>have known of Gawyn's part? And how much did Gawyn
>and Egwene speak of it?

Oh, I rather suspect that it's common knowledge among the surviving Warders, and probably even some of the Aes Sedai who escaped the Tower. Plus it's _extremely_ likely that many of Elaida's Aes Sedai know about it now, even if they only learned afterwards. There is no possible way that Gawyn's part in this affair is not going to be known. Just because _we_ only learned about it from Min's POV doesn't mean that other people don't know. (Indeed, where does _Min_ find out about it? From overhearing a guard comment, that's who.)

Gawyn's part might get swept under the rug as part of a general tidying-up of things once the Tower reunites, but we still don't know if he's going to survive long enough for that to happen.

As far as the suddenness of Gawyn + Egwene, I wonder if getting swept into his dreams might not have something to do with it...
Sparrowhawk
100. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
tonka @83
Yes, it was Rand's being able to channel that prevented Alanna from Compelling him. Specifically, I believe it was because Rand was holding the Power at the time. And since he can hold so much more of the Power than Alanna and Verin combined, Alanna was able to actually feel the resistance. Samael has observed at least once that holding the Power accorded some measure of protection.

Jahar is being accomodating with Merise because she hasn't tried using the Power on him. She'll be in for a rude surprise if she does. It's almost a given that Jahar is more powerful than Merise. And when Jahar sets his mind to something, Merise can't really do much, either.
Kevin Morgan
101. DrMorganstien
@99 TonyZbaraschuk
Getting sucked into his dreams only furthers Egwene's melodramatic love for him. It still starts for some reason. If RJ had just had them be hot for one another, then sneak away in whatever town they had all their fun in, then once they departed they realized it was love rather than lust it would've been fine. For some reason they were madly in love with one another after having met once or twice for five minutes (During which Eg was drooling over the other G brother) and then waiting for several months to even remember the other one existed.
Captain Hammer
102. Randalator
Wolfmage @97

The coup is obviously illegitimate because it was impossible without Black Ajah involvement.

How so? Elaida is the one pulling the strings. She approached Alviarin not the other way round and Elaida is definitely not Black Ajah. The fact that Elaida unknowingly pulled BA into the coup is no evidence whatsoever that the coup itself was illegitimate. The BA just found that Elaida's plan furthered their causes and tagged along.

But Elaida is in charge of the whole thing. Anything clearly darkfriendly would not have been tolerated by her.

Again: even the SAS only think that Elaida violated the laws spirit.

"While what was done to you followed the letter of the law narrowly," Sheriam said gently, "we agree that it was malignantly unjust, an extreme distortion of the law's spirit."
(TFoH, ch. 27)

So even if it was NOT written specifically into Tower Law, it certainly affects the legitimacy of the usurpation.

Actually it does not. As Carlinya said in LoC, ch. 35: "a law means what it says, whatever the framers thought they meant."

Egwene was made Amyrlin using a loophole in the law. And the SAS made a very strong point that they had to follow the law to the smallest detail or they would lose the legitimacy of their choice.

If their reason for opposing Elaida was her violation of the law's spirit, they couldn't have made Egwene Amyrlin. But it's only that they think the penalty "malignantly unjust" which is a matter of "taste" if you will. The process as a whole was legitimate.

Certainly just because Cadsuane called Elaida a lawful Amyrlin does not settle exactly what Tower Law actually means. Fact is, no Brown Ajah expert has ever given their full opinion on whether the actions taken were in compliance with the law or not, and Browns are represented at Salidar as well.

Morvrin (brown) and Beonin (gray) are part of the Salidar leading circle and present when all the statements quoted above are made. They never oppose and Beonin actually voices agreement with Carlinya's statement on the nature of laws.

So if Beonin as a gray agrees that the spirit of a law is irrelevant and Beonin and Morvrin both support Egwene's raising which is clearly violating the law's spirit, Elaida's coup as such cannot be illegitimate.
Sparrowhawk
103. Wolfmage
I just don't have any empathy for Gawyn as a character. He's a complete tool. Even if he suspected Rand at the start, he has no reason to continue to believe a rumour once he is corrected by his supposed super-love.

Him asking Egwene for proof of Rand's innocence is logical nonsense - you cannot prove a negative and it is exactly the opposite of Morgase's wisdom in letting Rand go on mere superstition in tEotW.

Egwene should have retorted that the onus was on him to actually have a shred of evidence for his odious allegation against her compatriot and Elayne's love.

He badly needs comeupance soon, whether from Elayne or Rand or another Warder kicking some sense into him. A tragic death might redeem him slightly but he is pretty much beyond hope at this point. I cannot even see what he can offer Egwene anyway right now, given his duties are tied to Elayne anyway.

Incidentally, I do hope Egwene lives on to find success. But she could probably do with being taken down a peg or six, so I'm looking forward to seeing her paying her toh to Rhuarc and Melaine.

@101 - DrMorganstien

"For some reason they were madly in love with one another after having met once or twice for five minutes (During which Eg was drooling over the other G brother) and then waiting for several months to even remember the other one existed."

Well said. It is highly, highly contrived on the facts, let alone with the stupid Deux Ex Machina super special love RJ inserts into the plot through the Dream suckage incident.

Personally, I think RJ could have written a better transition from supposed Egwene's girlish infatuation with Galad into a proper love for Gawyn.
Chris Hall
104. bookwormchris
To me it is always a bit interesting that Min decides to go back and rescue Siuan and Leane. She has been trying to get back to Rand since she arrived back at the Tower. Maybe she felt guilt or something over her visions of the coup? Or perhaps she didn't know where Rand was and decided that having Siuan along could help in that. For all I know it could be some sort of Ta'veren effect. Whatever the reason, she does a very brave thing going back and trying to rescue those two. She seems to be one of the more mature female characters, at least of the younger bunch.

On Elayne... I love her at times but she tends to have some very childish moments. I guess she sorta grows up during the series, but there are times when I just want to send her to the corner for a time out. Andoran Politics.... well, some of those scenes are interesting (there are lots of little things interspersed within those scenes that make them less notsome), but it does take a while. Perhaps the effect of all this slow buildup is to enhance the wow factor when things get resolved in a few scenes. Also, makes it clear the last battle is coming and the series will be ending soon. (How soon?)

I can't remember now what I felt while going through what most consider the slower books on my last read through. I did a book a week last summer, so they couldn't have been too bad (and I was pretty lazy at times about getting to them.) I remember spending quite some time trying to look for all sorts of interesting tidbits, as I do often on my rereads, but I never do seem to write anything down. My plans to annotate (with sticky notes) the heck out of my books one of these days never survives the first few pages of TEoTW.
Sparrowhawk
105. Wolfmage
@102 Randalator
"How so? Elaida is the one pulling the strings. She approached Alviarin not the other way round and Elaida is definitely not Black Ajah."

I didn't say Elaida was Black Ajah, I said that the vote was impossible without Black Ajah participation. Obviously a Black Ajah sitter has no legitimacy in the Hall so that invalidates the legitimacy of the coup in an objective sense, even it isn't subjectively known. It is said a number of times that the support of the White was the only thing that made it possible, and the evidence is there to believe the BA was involved more than just Alviarin.

"The fact that Elaida unknowingly pulled BA into the coup is no evidence whatsoever that the coup itself was illegitimate. The BA just found that Elaida's plan furthered their causes and tagged along."

Of course it is. How can a coup pulled off in concert with the Black Ajah possibly be legitimate? The BA and their works are by definition illegitimate. Subtract the BA and none of it would have happened - but if it did - it would have been far more legitimate even with the lack of notice because it would be a vote and politicking by real, valid Aes Sedai.

"But Elaida is in charge of the whole thing. Anything clearly darkfriendly would not have been tolerated by her."

I don't see the relevance of that. It doesn't matter what Elaida subjective knew or didn't know for our purposes here. That only matters in the context of the discussion of what other Aes Sedai think about the legitimacy of the coup. But I brought up the BA in terms of the the overall legitimacy of the votes that deposed Siuan and raised Elaida.

Fact is, they were orchestrated with the BA playing a key role. By definition those votes are illegitimate.

"Morvrin (brown) and Beonin (gray) are part of the Salidar leading circle and present when all the statements quoted above are made. They never oppose and Beonin actually voices agreement with Carlinya's statement on the nature of laws.

So if Beonin as a gray agrees that the spirit of a law is irrelevant and Beonin and Morvrin both support Egwene's raising which is clearly violating the law's spirit, Elaida's coup as such cannot be illegitimate."

I would have to go read the quotes, but I don't believe either can be said to endorse the process as legitimate even if they say it is illegal (I note you keep collapsing those too concepts as if they are interchangeable. They are not.)

As for the Hall in exile, I don't think you can analogise between Hall protocol under a unified Tower and one operating during the midst of a civil war. It is like North Korea and South Korea - there is only one true Korea despite there being two defacto governments. What matters in such cases are political recognition from the outside.
Kevin Morgan
106. DrMorganstien
@104 bookwormchris
I agree on Min. I think one of the major reasons she goes to help Siuan is the fact that Ms. Sanche has earned Elmidreda's trust by keeping her secret. She also has shown herself to be a very good Amyrlin and pretty competent when it comes to anything other than prophecy reading, although no one in the series is particularly good at it (I'm looking at you, Elaida). Another thing is that anybody who knows about Mo and Si and their private quest would help out, I mean I certainly would.

I go back and forth on Elayne depending on what misadventure she is on. My overall opinion of her is that she is waayyyyy more mature than your average 17 year old princess who has superpowers. That being said, she is still immature and should listen to Birgitte more.

As to the Tower coup and stuff...I love the debate, not sure which side to come down on yet though. Everyone is doing an excellent and intelligent job discussing and you all deserve a thank you.
Sparrowhawk
107. SRizea
HArai @ 49 has the right of it. Siuan and the Supergirls made Gawyn into what he is.

There are two fundamental errors the women made that created the problem: typical WoT-style lack of empathy, and a lack of respect for how dangerous he could be.

The lack of empathy is fairly straightforward in my opinion. Gawyn was a dedicated young man who took his duties very seriously. He was taken and locked away such that he could see what he needed to do to fulfill those duties, but was prevented from doing anything about it. This is an unsustainable situation for Gawyn, and it creates in him a burning need to see something done (he is a young lord after all). Per usual WoT character MO, the women never stopped to think how they would react in such a situation.

The lack of respect stems directly from typical AS mentality that men must be "handled", but are not dangerous to those who use the OP. Gawyn was left alone to be trained in combat surrounded by potential followers (the other students). Siuan would never have left an unfriendly AS in those circumstances.

Gawyn is charismatic, has all the leadership training one would get in a royal household, took well to the sword, and had a need to act. I find it perfectly reasonable that he began to organize other youths (not yet indoctrinated by the Tower) into a tool he could use to fulfill his duty. The least credible part of this is that Hammar failed to notice the threat growing right under his nose.
Alice Arneson
108. Wetlandernw
My, my, the unfounded assumptions are flying tonight!
Kevin Morgan
109. DrMorganstien
I know, its sweet

unfounded assumptions are the building blocks of wild theories, and we simply don't have enough of those

NOTE: Irony aside, I am enjoying the discussions, I say keep it up. No offense intended Wetlandernw
Alice Arneson
110. Wetlandernw
Hey, I'm enjoying it too, in a twisted sort of way. Not the least bit willing to wade into it, though. I'll sit here in my lawn chair with my nice drink with the little umbrella in it, and just watch the shenanigans.

Oh, and maybe toss in a wasp to stir things up once in a while if it seems to be slowing.

Go light.
Sparrowhawk
111. Louis R. Rodriguez
Gawyn and the Younglings sided with Elaida because Gawyn saw it as the right thing. The whole culture of Randland, all of its history, say Siuan is wrong wrong wrong. Add on Siuan's foolish alienation of Gawyn by refusing to tell him what was going on with Elayne and Egwene, well, prince or no, Siuan was going down.

Moreover, we don't know what Elaida said to Gawyn (if she said anything), but Gawyn knows the Red Sister. He grew up with Elaida in her role as Morgase's advisor. That had to count something with Gawyn.

The only thing, other than the status of the Supergirls, that could have helped Gawyn side with Siuan is knowing how important helping Rand was and why. The prince had met Rand, even liked him. Unfortunately, forevermore, Gawyn will link Rand and the Dragon Reborn to Siuan's plotting and endangering two most important women in Gawyn's life.
Sparrowhawk
112. Wolfmage
@107 SRizea
"Gawyn is charismatic, has all the leadership training one would get in a royal household, took well to the sword, and had a need to act. I find it perfectly reasonable that he began to organize other youths (not yet indoctrinated by the Tower) into a tool he could use to fulfill his duty. The least credible part of this is that Hammar failed to notice the threat growing right under his nose."

I think your argument has jumped a massive chasm of logic here. It is one thing to suggest the entirely innocuous claim that Siuan and Elayne are guilty of being highly obfuscatory in their mission, as well as unhelpful and insensitive to Gawyn desire to fulfil his duties and stay close to Elayne - thereby letting his angst built up unattended over her disappearance. But to saying that they *made* Gawyn do what he did is, I think, wrong.

The suggestion that Gawyn was forced to do anything is not credible, let alone something so drastic and evidently reckless as killing Hammar Gaidin and playing a role in the coup which has such foreseeable and pervasively destabilising effects throughout Randland.

The attempt to sheet home blame to solely or mostly to Siuan is just a species of fatalistic thinking which relies on a kind of discredited boiling pot theory of male psychology, whereby men are these precious little creatures who could go off like a volcano at any moment if you push them. And if you do you, by God, you deserve what's coming, etc.

IMO, not only is that an impoverished way of viewing moral responsibility and male psychology, it also happens to rob Gawyn of his personal integrity and autonomous choice in the same way as Siuan's machinations - by just assuming he is an appendage of their will. It is distinctly un-Kantian. You cannot just assign his own choices no value and deterministically attribute them to extrinsic forces.

Gawyn could have left Tar Valon in search of Elayne. He could have confronted the Amyrlin earlier, he could have rallied the Younglings from Hammar's actions and refused to participate. He could have done any number of other things. The point is he choose to cement the coup based on his own emotional reasons.

Now certainly it is true that his worry may have been better managed by Siuan and Elayne in both their dealings with him, but he still bears responsibility for his actions, not anyone else. If we take that step we deny him as a person and a character and he simply becomes a disembodied causal force.
Greg Bloom
113. MuleHeadedLummox
Wolfmage @105 I think you're confusing something which would be morally wrong with something that is in fact illegal. While the Black Ajah's participation (when revealed) will likely make the AS look at the coup in a bad light, that does not make it illegal. I highly doubt that the White Tower and the Aes Sedai, who will barely admit that there is a Black Ajah, have any sort of law forbidding BA from having positions in the Tower. Again this goes to the arguement that it is not illegal, just immoral and against custom. And if the decision is not illegal, it cannot be overturned just because it is considered by some to be illegitimate.

To take a real world example, look at the situation with former Illinois Governor Blagoyavitch. Even though he (allegedly) did things that were illegal while in office, his being impeached did not automatically undo any of the actions he took as governor. In fact, the senator he placed in the seat which he is accused of attempting to sell is still in Congress. In the same way, just being found out as Black Ajah and deposed will not overturn any decision those sitters made, although it will probably force the Hall and the Amyrlin to revue those decisions.

On another note, as far as Sisters being able to kill without using the power, this is confirmed in either WH or CoT (I can't remember which offhand). One of the things in the secret histories that Siuan teaches Egwene is that, after several attempts to place a deposed (and inefective) Amyrlin back in power, in order to prevent further attempts sisters smothered her with a pillow. So AS can kill without the power, even if there is no threat to their life.
Alice Arneson
114. Wetlandernw
MuleHeadedLummox:
I think you're confusing something which would be morally wrong with something that is in fact illegal.

Well played!
::applauds::
j p
115. sps49
@83 tonka, & et al-
I think that Alanna has no luck with compelling (little c or big C) Rand is because he is so much stronger in the Power than she, although Rand holding saidin did not register as a factor with me before now. I don't recall the wording, but I recall her telling someone that attempting to prod him was like trying to lift a building.

112 Wolfmage; thanks, that is what I was trying to get across at post 76. MAybe I was too colorful

Re: the BA and illegitimacy- nobody knows the BA is involved, so it shouldn't affect anyone's actions.
Sparrowhawk
116. Wolfmage
"I think you're confusing something which would be morally wrong with something that is in fact illegal. While the Black Ajah's participation (when revealed) will likely make the AS look at the coup in a bad light, that does not make it illegal."

I didn't say the BA's participation meant it was illegal. Go back and check my words. I clearly said the BA's participation makes it objectively illegitimate. I am very careful about the difference between a norm of legitimacy or a norm of legality - it is the other posters who are frequently using them interchangeably.

*NB @105 I did make a typo: "...but I don't believe either can be said to endorse the process as legitimate even if they say it is illegal.." - should read "legal".

There is some overlap b/n the concepts, but it is entirely plausible and indeed likely to be able to identify behaviour that breaches moral norms, conventions and custom as illegitimate without it being illegal. Indeed, many scholars of legal philosophy believe that the whole basis of law as law depends on the so-called Separability Thesis - that is, the possibility of their being immoral or illegitimate law. An easy example is probably an autocratic system of government - which may be entirely lawful - but not legitimate because the power is arbitrary in an important sense.

Now, legitimacy in the context of systems of succession is complicated because it can often involve consideration of the legal aspects of succession within an arbitrary system. So we may say the succession of a Monarch is legitimate if it complied with the law without saying that we embrace Monarchy as a legitimate system of government. In that way legitimate has narrow and broad sense and can enable us to talk past each other.

For my purpose, I will simply define what I mean. My sense of legitimacy here is pretty simple and intuitive - I believe that the BA's involvement means that the decision was effectively tainted by their involvement. BA votes were crucial in the Great Consensus and in the politicking behind all the other votes. I do not invoke any law to say this - it is a question of the integrity of the process, not about its legality.

"I highly doubt that the White Tower and the Aes Sedai, who will barely admit that there is a Black Ajah, have any sort of law forbidding BA from having positions in the Tower."

Again nothing to do with the Tower Law - that is a separate argument. I separately argue above that the procedural irregularities undermine its legal status, not the participation of the BA. But I have already confirmed that there is no clear textual support for Tower Law on the status of such procedural compliance of notification.

"...this goes to the arguement that it is not illegal, just immoral and against custom. And if the decision is not illegal, it cannot be overturned just because it is considered by some to be illegitimate.""

You have just conflated illegality and legitimacy in the narrow sense of legal succession here, not me. I have kept them separate through the whole chain of discussion.
Sparrowhawk
117. Wolfmage
@113 "To take a real world example, look at the situation with former Illinois Governor Blagoyavitch. Even though he (allegedly) did things that were illegal while in office, his being impeached did not automatically undo any of the actions he took as governor. In fact, the senator he placed in the seat which he is accused of attempting to sell is still in Congress. In the same way, just being found out as Black Ajah and deposed will not overturn any decision those sitters made, although it will probably force the Hall and the Amyrlin to revue those decisions."

This doesn't contradict anything I said. In claiming that the BA's involvement made it objectively illegitimate, I said nothing about that justifying a legal nullification of the decision.

The legal debate here is of little importance, certainly less so than the moral debate. The fact is the egg is now broken, and the Tower split into two opposing factions. In such a situation the best framework to consider the issue is not internal domestic politics but civil war. In this civil war, there is two claimants to the status of being the one true Tower and one must prevail in the end.

Which claimant wins will be settled by force and political recognition. This is the way it is handed in our world and that how it will be handled in Randland.
Ankush Trakru
118. Quinty
whoa,said teh man
wot re-read in haiku is
rocking teh free world
Alice Arneson
119. Wetlandernw
Of course, if you look up the definition of "legitmate" you find things like:

"Being in compliance with the law; lawful"

Oh, details.
Sparrowhawk
121. Wolfmage
119 @ Wetlandernw

Don't be glib. Legitimate is in no way completely synonymous with legal. In the post above I specifically acknowledge the scope for overlap, but I'm not going to pretend I need to elaborately defend a plain English usage of the word as non legal, normative concept.
Leigh Butler
122. leighdb
MattG @ 86:

I find it hard to accept that I am the first person pedantic enough to point out that chap-ter for-ty se-ven is six syllables.

Not if you say it in a Southern accent!

*shifty eyes*
Ian Horn
123. IanGH
HArai @49, SRizea @107: I agree with you regarding Gawyn.

There is no evidence that Elaida planned it out to use him, and I doubt that there was any warmth between Elaida and Gawyn based on her time in Andor. I suspect that Gawyn heard that Siuan had been deposed for "various and sundry nefarious deeds", and thought that somehow she had gotten Elayne tangled up in them. Then when he heard that some warders were attempting to free her, he went and stopped them.

I can not say any more about the "legality" of the deposition of Siuan. But surely her stilling was a sham. Was there a trial? Was evidence brought forth?

I remember the sinking feeling I had the first time I read this chapter and I still feel it a bit now. If I remember correctly, this is the first chapter in the series where the good guys really seem to take a hit, losing their grip on power in Tar Valon and Gawyn turning into a lunatic.

And of course it is frustrating since we the readers all have enough knowledge to prevent this madness but the characters in the book who have it are too stiff-necked to say it.

I don't spend a lot of time thinking about sexual politics and equality in literature and the like. But, if I did, I would probably think Jordan's advance to society is the fact that he can write women to be as arrogant and stubborn as the men.
Sparrowhawk
124. HArai
Wolfmage @112:
I don't claim Gawyn was forced to do anything. He is responsible for his own actions, and I believe _takes_ responsibility for his own actions. I merely believe that there are valid reasons other than "Gawyn is such an idiot" that he took those actions. Why would he be expected to side with Siuan? I can't think of any reason he should have. Perhaps you can point me to something?
I think the _best_ thing to do would have been to let the Aes Sedai eat themselves but he didn't agree.

I think the Tower split was caused by Siuan and Elaida and the apparent 4th oath of the Aes Sedai - "I swear to constantly mislead and manipulate my own sisters, and of course all lesser mortals."
(Let me just point out that I think everyone except Loial seems to have sworn something similar - It's the one thing about the WoT that truly drives me nuts)

Gawyn picked a side. Hammar and Coulin picked a side. Gawyn didn't kill them for emotional satisfaction, he killed them because otherwise they were going to free Siuan. Why aren't we talking about how drastic and emotionally reckless it was of Hammar to try to free Siuan and Leane? I submit it's because we as readers know Elaida is a waste of skin, so "obviously" anyone supporting Elaida is an idiot. I don't see how Gawyn would know that at the time the takeover happened however. It's not as though anyone has told him anything...
TW L
125. Shadow_Jak
His sacred oath? No more.
With dimpled smile and lifted chin,
The Lily gelds the Boar

Not Haiku, that's plain
But maybe the next best thang
colon, write, quit, bang
:wq!
TW L
126. Shadow_Jak
Pathetic? It true.
But no matter what I do...
I just can't Haiku.

Sorry folks. But at 3 am... it was either this or a discussion of illegitimate poetry vs. illegal rhyme.
Sparrowhawk
127. Chernabog
I"m not sure if this has been answered yet, but how did Elaida pull off becoming Amyrlin legally?

We know she barely had the votes to depose Siuan. But the law does require the Greater Consensus to elect a woman Amyrlin. I highly doubt they did one vote after the other since the Blues would not have been told of the first vote to depose until afterwards, and things were chaotic. So without the Blue sitters to vote how did it happen? One of the Blue Sitters if I recall even died during the coup...
Sparrowhawk
128. jotto
This is in regards to Leighs comment "this family is fucked up".

Their next family reunion is going to be down right scary. You've got Elayne, Rand, Gawyn, Galad, Morgase even Thom. Rand and Elayne are having twins. Gawyn wants to kill Rand for killing Morgase, who isn't dead. Thom possibly engineering Taringail's death. On top of that you have Rand's half brother Galad, who is half brother to Gawyn and Elayne, which are second cousins or something to Moiraine and....

It's too confusing to go on. Has anyone done a character map?

I'm having flashbacks of Jerry Springer.

One tiny footnote, I know I'm not the only one who has noticed that the word orange has never appeared in any of tWoT books. It must be hard for an author to work around an entire color.
T C
129. Freelancer
Rand, Elayne and Min
Aviendha in the mix
Nynaeve's braid rips free

Thomdril Merrilin
Moiraine Damodred Sedai
A Fox and a fox

Band of the Red Hand
Dance with Jak o' the Shadows
Mat's luck wins the day

Wolfbrother Perrin
Torn 'twixt the axe and hammer
Will Maneth'ren rise?

The Wheel of Time turns
Memory, legend, then myth
Ages come and pass

Five, and then seven
Another five to follow
Haiku was e'er thus
T C
130. Freelancer
HArai@124

I think the Tower split was caused by Siuan and Elaida and the apparent 4th oath of the Aes Sedai - "I swear to constantly mislead and manipulate my own sisters, and of course all lesser mortals."
(Let me just point out that I think everyone except Loial seems to have sworn something similar - It's the one thing about the WoT that truly drives me nuts)


Nuts enough that you'd consciously avoid doing the same thing to those around you? Let them in on your plans and intentions, not mislead them, not make decisions on the flimsiest information when more profound facts are just a question or two away? Then the author made his point. Well, one of them.
Sparrowhawk
131. Anon23244
*Twitches* :look
Sparrowhawk
132. Stone Dog
The tower coup was stunning - took me completely by surprise the first time I read it.
Agree with everyone that Gawyn behaves like an idiot but I don't find it credible that he killed Hammar - the man who taught the warders all they know.
Do we know for sure that Alric was already dead when Elaida and the others burst into the Amrylin's study? Couldn't he have been taken prisoner or diverted somehow and killed afterwards? I don't think he was doing much warding while Siuan was in her study, probably only accompanied her when she travelled outside the tower.
Sparrowhawk
133. Anon23245
Freelancer@130:

HArai@124:
I think the Tower split was caused by
Siuan and Elaida and the apparent 4th oath
of the Aes Sedai - "I swear to constantly
mislead and manipulate my own sisters, and
of course all lesser mortals."
(Let me just point out that I think
everyone except Loial seems to have sworn
something similar - It's the one thing
about the WoT that truly drives me nuts)

Nuts enough that you'd consciously avoid doing
the same thing to those around you? Let them in
on your plans and intentions, not mislead
them, not make decisions on the flimsiest
information when more profound facts are just
a question or two away? Then the author made
his point. Well, one of them.

RJ's books taught me just how fun it is to plot & scheme and tell half-truths ^^

I can now confidently mislead someone without having to lie.

Playing mindgames with Lesser Mortals (especially the odd shrink that has the misfortune to cross paths with me) is great fun :D
John Massey
134. subwoofer
'K, mea culpa. Two more cents. The thing that personally gets me about Gawyn taking 'sides' in the coup has not much to do with Elaida. The Amyrlin was in power- look at her as the Pres or the Secretary of Defense. The Tower is a military school.

Now anybody that Googles RJ's background can see that he went to the Citidel and was a decorated war Veteran. IMHO that's were he drew from to design most of his scapes, characters, and kingdoms. I served my country- Canada- and it resonates with me. Of course, when I toured, it was pre...PC... so the army was palpably different, to me, better.

I digress, so in most military situations, you follow orders, without question. Period. There is no room for moral ambiguity- gee, this order doesn't feel right to me. Hammar, for his brief stint where we see him, reminds me of any DI. A crusty old sarge that will smack you around to make you into a man and at the end of it all you are grateful for the experience.

So out of the blue, Gawyn, who was raised in a castle, with real soldiers- who obeyed orders- decides, hey, my DI is on the wrong side, I must kill him... and the whole Princess Bride thing...
Shenaningans.

RJ's books are dominant with the theme of discipline and order. Look at Egwene and Nynaeve. They could toss around their instructors like rag dolls. They are hot sh#t as far as anyone in the Tower goes. Everybody was excited about the discovery of girls with so much power that they elcipse Cadsuane -who was the stuff for the last 1000 years. But the girls follow orders, scrub pots and get spanked etc. Because they understand structure and discipline and what that encompasses.

Then along comes Gawyn, possessed, doing what he did. Leigh, where's that boat oar?

*tink* *tink*
Michael Catapano
135. hoping
I am enjoying all the poetic efforts out there but am genetically unable to contribute.

Pretty impressive discussions on the tower coup in the overnight, in depth and erudite. Of course, both AS factions are at fault. None of this would have happened if they were decently collared.
:)
just saying
*runs for cover*
Lannis .
136. Lannis
Loving the back and forths, guys--great discussion! Giving me some food for thought, that's for sure.

Re: Egwene/Gawyn romance... RJ's been accused of not writing believable romance, and perhaps this is it... but in response to the "they didn't spend a lot of time together" comment, I think there was more interaction off screen. Remember in tGH, the whole Portal Stones zoom forward left us with a few months at the Tower where the girls had been educated off screen? Who's to say they didn't also interact more with Gawyn and Galad. I can't recall if the last time Egwene is near the two boys she's all moon eyes at Galad, or if she's getting over that... but it's just a thought (and Lord knows I've been wrong before!).

Re: The legality of the Tower coup... sounds like we've our own little divided Tower here... s'nice to see we can discuss it and still play well with others. :)

Wetlander: your comments from the sidelines are cracking me up! ;)
Sparrowhawk
137. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Chernabog @127
I think there were two separate votes. One to depose Siuan and another to raise her. But the requirements for both would be identical. So Elaida could manage being Amyrlin with what she already had for removing Siuan. Attendance (or lack thereof) by any of the Ajahs isn't relevant as long as she had the numbers.
Blake Engholm
138. UncrownedKing
I think the secret fourth oath is:
I shall do everything in my power to view myself as the complete and total package. In doing so an Iw ill stew in my own arrogance and ignorance, constantly mishandle very important situations, and make the Dark One, and all his evil, look like not that bad of a guy


LoC is going to be ugly for me.
Sparrowhawk
139. RobMRobM
Free @129. Really well done. Can I order one for Tuon, please?

To all re Gawyn - the fascinating issue remains how he came to the conclusion that Siuan was properly deposed and Elaida lawfully elevated, such that those who resisted (such as Hammar) should be opposed as rebels. I can't believe he came to that conclusion on his own. That is the missing element of the story. His trashing Siuan to Min as being possibly Black Ajah suggests that his information may have come from someone on the wrong side of the light.

The most amazing thing about the coup is still the abolition of the Blue Ajah. What call is there for the alleged sins of two or three of them (Siuan, Moiraine and maybe Leane) to serve as grounds to kill off the entire group. That step guaranteed a broken tower, as there could be no compromise with the other Blue sisters. That move sounds like an Elaida idiot move rather than a Black move but it is a doozie.

By the way, I believe it is mentioned in a later book that Hammar was a blademaster - so even more amazing that the Younglings took him on.

Rob
John Massey
140. subwoofer
@Lannis, yes, a divided Tower...
um... Great taste vs. less filling...
Antoni Ivanov
141. tonka
I think it's very easy for us to blame Gawyn when we haven't walk in his shoes. Imagine you were in his place. What choice would you have made. You may pretend you would have chosen to stay aside or even support Siuan but I think most will be lying to themself if you think that way. I really cannot tell what I would have chosen. My vision and opinion was already clouded by all the things I knew (but Gawyn didn't). All he knew was the the Hall had convened and they have decided that the Amyrlin Seat has been "fired" and new Amyrlin has been chosen. And then some of the Warders have decided to rebel against the new Amyrlin. Now it is not his job what and how the things in the Tower work. But Hammar and the other are rebelling against the new Amyrlin. And Gawyn hates (probably) Siuan.She hid his sister and probably put her in danger and it is his duty to protect Elayne. While Elaida was with them the last 20 years , ever since they were born. Somehow he will trust Elaida more than the mainulative b*** that's hiding his sister.Will you not?
Michael Catapano
142. hoping
Tonka@141
I believe Gawyn knew more than you say. I think he was in on the initial planning stages of the coup. He made a bad decision to trust Elaida. I don't think he saw what he deemed to be a lawful outcome and made an on the spot decision to support the legal outcome. He already had in place a militia, the younglings, loyal to him, that was the difference in the battle. Whether it was Elaida that encouraged him to do this or one of the BA that he later takes orders from, I'm not sure, but I don't think he was just swept up in the heat of the moment. Certainly his motivation was anger at Siuan.
Sparrowhawk
143. toryx
In response to Rob @ 139:

To all re Gawyn - the fascinating issue remains how he came to the conclusion that Siuan was properly deposed and Elaida lawfully elevated, such that those who resisted (such as Hammar) should be opposed as rebels. I can't believe he came to that conclusion on his own.

Well here's the thing: Gawyn was raised by a Queen who believed in and supported the White Tower all her life. Morgase taught Gawyn the value of the law and the obligation a ruler has for her people.

Then there's Elaida who was always at Morgase's side. Morgase valued her council and trusted Elaida. Thus, Gawyn was raised to believe that the Aes Sedai are noble women who respect the law.

Then Elayne disappears. The Amyrlin (Siuan) has no idea what happened to the daughter-heir of Andor. When her Queen mother comes along and demands to know what happened, Siuan twists her words as thoroughly as she ever has. Unfortunately for Siuan, Morgase and the princes are not idiots. When you twist the truth as much as she did, it's kind of obvious. Particularly given that the only true answer Siuan could have given was, "I don't know." So Morgase, unsatisfied with the answers, orders both men to see that Elayne is returned as soon as safe for her to do so.

So Gawyn, who was raised to believe that the Tower and the Amyrlin Seat were honest and law abiding is discovering this isn't necessarily true. On top of all that Elaida, who has represented the Aes Sedai and the Tower all his life, isn't bothering to hide that she's just as concerned about the whereabouts of Elayne as Gawyn.

When Elaida virtually declares that the Amyrlin Seat is a darkfriend and that her actions are complicit with the disappearance of Elayne (and Egwene) why would Gawyn not believe her? Siuan has been playing with him since he got to the tower and he has no reason not to trust Elaida. She's even provided an explanation that actually makes sense. Given that Elaida was able to win the support of enough Sitters, the accusation that Siuan is actually Black Ajah explains everything.

Given all that, why wouldn't Gawyn join with Elaida?

Personally, I blame Elayne. If she'd confided in Gawyn just once, everything would have been different.
Blake Engholm
144. UncrownedKing
@128
One tiny footnote, I know I'm not the only one who has noticed that the word orange has never appeared in any of tWoT books. It must be hard for an author to work around an entire color.

Wow my mind is blown. How the hell did you ever notice this. I can't deny this claim, because I can't think of a single instance where the word orange is uttered by RJ or any of the characters.

@139
I also always though that Elaida destorying the Blue ajah was her throwing a hissy fit. Kind of like a "I am apart of an ajah that will soon be forced to not do their job, because the Dragon is Reborn. So instead of finding a new hobby I'll take out a group that is known for having a purpose and goals and are the opposite of my group of lady loving, men hating friends."

I will always and forever hate Elaida, for nothing else other than the fact that she is an imbecile. Grr.

Does anyone get up on tueday and thursday and say a silent prayer that Leigh will suprise us with a post??? No? Just me? Fine
Michael Catapano
145. hoping
@128 re no orange
two possibilities come to mind
1 The taint on saidan was physically manifested as a burst of electromagnetic energy, but like a bizarro EMP, at a negative 590 to 620 nanometers effectively neutralizing the orange visible spectrum.
2 Mr. Rigney has an anti-English bent
Ian Horn
146. IanGH
Jotto @128 Re: Orange. Nice try. But I'm not going back to check.

Re: Elaida. I so can't wait for the scene where Egwene kicks Elaida's ass, reunites the tower right under her nose, and reveals to her face who Rand's mother is. Please, please let that be in the book 12!

What a waste of a Foretelling talent...
Kurt Lorey
147. Shimrod
@145 hoping. Wouldn't that be an anti-Dutch bent?
Sparrowhawk
148. JimmyMac80
@ 134 Gawyn was trained to be a general, not a soldier. Therefore he would be trained to learn about the situation and make up his own mind.

In general, about Gawyn, assuming that Elaida's version of the truth came out, that Siuan was breaking Tower laws, then Gawyn would be the first to step up to help deposing her, regardless of Elaida's influence. We know from one of Elayne's thoughts or comments that Morgase taught that even a queen must follow the law, therefore Gawyn would expect the same of the Amyrlin.

About the dissolution of the Blue Ajah, considering the fact that the whole Ajah rebeled it's not too surprising that she would get rid of it. Especially considering the animosity between the Red and Blue Ajahs.

@ 146 I don't think Egwene knows Rand's mother is Tigraine, I believe he is the only one who figured that out.
Sparrowhawk
149. LindaL
@128. Noticed that. Also, there's no pink. It's always a very pale/ light red.
Michael Catapano
150. hoping
Shimrod
I don't know about Dutch but I think orange is the color of England. Maybe I'm too heavily influenced by Braveheart.
Sparrowhawk
151. warcaller
148@JimmyMac80

Isn't there some discussion to the effect that whilst disposing Suian was legal dissolving the Blue Ajah was illegal?

I'm fairly certain that Elaida votes to have the Blue Ajah dissolved and then they rebel.
John Massey
152. subwoofer
@148- doesn't matter. Even officer's have to go through basic. Then OCS. And Gawyn was in Warder school just like everyone else.

Because he was "trained" as a general, he should have more emphasis on respecting the chain of command. Not the opposite. Even four stars are responsible to five- who are responsible to the joint chiefs and the SecD.
I am a free thinking person and I could of mopped the floor with my DI on day 1 but I didn't because of military law, court marshalling, the brig, other DI's and respect for the system and chain of command. It is the right thing to do.

These Princes- like Prince Henry- still have to follow orders.
Jason Deshaies
153. darxbane
Wow, I do love reading how people feel about a story's characters. The assumptions and leaps that are taken to justify points of view are awesome. Evidence? We don't need no stinkin' evidence (unless it supports the belief, of course)! These forums prove just how well RJ understood human nature. He does take dramatic license at times (It's a STORY!), but overall he is right on the button. We don't like being reminded of our flaws. Like those who makes excuses for a man (and former President, no less), who repeatedly used his positions of power to take advantage of women. Clinton lied under oath during a sexual harrassment investigation. That is 100% illegal, period. He also went on live TV and lied right to everyone's face. No spin, no conjecture, an out and out, bold-faced lie. why do some look past that? Because it is easier to do that than to question yourself, which is precisely why Elaida's Coup works (by the way, I know this is nitpicky, but this was NOT a Coup D'etat, as there was plenty of bloodshed involved). The AS who supported Elaida assigned blame for the imminent change of all they have believed on Siuan, and they weren't entirely wrong in doing so. She did break the rules by hiding her knowledge of Rand. Some of Moiraine's pigeons were obviously being intercepted, so they had evidence to support the claim. You could even argue that Elaida's actions finally exposed the divisions in the Tower that had existed for centuries. there is so much more I would like to comment on, but I will hold off for now.
Chris Maurer
154. grayfox
The thing that really makes me laugh about Gawyn is he killed his respected teacher because Hammar was trying to help Siuan & Leane escape...then what does he Gawyn do the next time we see him on screen (10 pages or so later)? Yea, he helps Siuan & Leane escape.
Sparrowhawk
155. Wolfmage
"When Elaida virtually declares that the Amyrlin Seat is a darkfriend and that her actions are complicit with the disappearance of Elayne (and Egwene) why would Gawyn not believe her?"

Um, because it's not based on evidence?

If a friend or family confidant makes a serious allegation against someone I would certainly consider their claims with some degree of weight, but I would still demand evidence of the allegation commensurate with the claim. It certainly wouldn't matter if I personally hated or felt disabused by the person in question as many posters have tried to justify based on petty emotion or an ostentatious sense of duty. That might make it more comfortable for me to believe ill of someone personally, but the fault would be mine alone if I accepted such comfort in substitution of evidence. I find the idea of embraces prejudice completely alien to good character and judgement.

The fact is, in the books Gawyn believes two outrageously implausible dispersions against two principals who are formidable and well-intentioned based on very little. Being charitable, he accepts uncritically Elaida word, in the case of Siuan, and street rumour in the case of his mother.

Such prejudice in the face of a paucity of evidence might be forgivable in a prima facie sense, but Gawyn maintains his erroneous beliefs in the face of the implicit and express testimonial of people he supposedly loves and respects far more than Elaida (eg. Elayne implicitly and Egwene expressly).

I'd say the fact that Elaida later elects to consciously sacrifice Gawyn's life highlights how grossly defective his judgement was, and it is only her incompetence in executing that plan which ironically spares him the poetic justice of a ignoble end.
Antoni Ivanov
156. tonka
I'm fairly certain that Elaida votes to have the Blue Ajah dissolved and then they rebel.

There is no way that the Hall would let such a law to pass. That's done by Amyrlin's decree.And there are still Aes Sedai in the White Tower that believe that the decree is ridiculous and Elaida will relent.
Even without all of Alviarin's machinations with this decree Elaida made sure that there is not way that the White Tower could be united behind her.
Which is in complete contrast with Egwene's intent to keep the Tower whole even the reds( her refusal to take off the red stripe from her stole )
Antoni Ivanov
157. tonka
at 152

@148- doesn't matter. Even officer's have to go through basic. Then OCS. And Gawyn was in Warder school just like everyone else.

Because he was "trained" as a general, he should have more emphasis on respecting the chain of command. Not the opposite. Even four stars are responsible to five- who are responsible to the joint chiefs and the SecD.
I am a free thinking person and I could of mopped the floor with my DI on day 1 but I didn't because of military law, court marshalling, the brig, other DI's and respect for the system and chain of command. It is the right thing to do.


What would you do if you were General and your Field General decided to rebel against the President and take part of the Army to take the President down. Would you follow him or would you stay against him? Now place yourself in Gawyn position and take the decision.
Maggie M
158. Eswana
Whew, late to the party!!

First of all:

Fife @ 85, THANK YOU SO MUCH for the video link. This absolves you of all Rickrolling shenanigans. HUZZAH!


Um, yeah, Gawyn is a huge tool in this section. I tried to rationalize his behavior- ie, he was raised with Elaida right there; he's pissed at Siuan, and he's a young man, who is wont to make silly choices. However, that doesn't excuse his stupidness. Gah. He killed Hammer. That's not cool. Especially given his flip-flopping two seconds later (letting Siuan escape, etc). Oy.

Agree with several above, also- his and Egwene's relationship lacks development and most certainly seems forced. They've barely ever spent time together, and when they were, Egwene was busy drooling over Galad. Then suddenly - poof! she's sucked into his dreams in TAR and instantly loves him? I don't buy it. But again, once could argue that several love-related storylines in WoT require suspension of disbelief. Whatever.

Uncrowned @ 144
Did you change icons? I like the new one.

also,
@139
I also always though that Elaida destroying the Blue Ajah was her throwing a hissy fit. Kind of like a "I am apart of an ajah that will soon be forced to not do their job, because the Dragon is Reborn. So instead of finding a new hobby I'll take out a group that is known for having a purpose and goals and are the opposite of my group of lady loving, men hating friends."


Yup. Also, Elaida has always been kind of a whackjob. Remember in New Spring when she tried to make Moiraine and Siuan fail their test for the shawl, even after she "helped them cheat" by practicing with them? Maybe she's just sexually frustrated and was jealous of Moiraine and Siuan's BPFF relationship (note: BPFF= Best Pillow Friends Forever, a term coined by Jason for the Skit)

But despite Elaida being a mega bitch, I think..... um, that her position as Amrylin is legit.

::is a little squirmy::

Meaning, she followed the letter of the law, even though she manipulated other sisters to get her way. Which is problematic, because as much as I would like to be gung-ho 100% behind Egwene (mostly because I thing Egwene kicks ass, especially in KoD), Elaida technically is lawfully Amrylin, albeit a terrible one. Oh well. I suppose the Tower historians will rewrite things so that Egwene comes out as the legitimate ruler. Which is probably best, in the end.
Sparrowhawk
159. toryx
@155.
Um, because it's not based on evidence?

Oh, I'm sure Elaida had plenty of evidence to present that Siuan has been up to no good, if not outright proof that she's Black Ajah. She could never have persuaded enough Sitters of the Hall to support her if she didn't.

We know the evidence of Siuan's treason (or misuse of power) exist. Siuan admits as much several times, to Moiraine and to herself in her own POV. After Siuan is taken by Elaida and submitted to questioning, she admits to almost everything.

It's never flat out said what evidence Elaida had but it must have been substantial. And Siuan had known all along that if the truth were to come out she'd likely be stilled for it.

There can be little question that Gawyn had all the evidence he needed to stand against Siuan and anyone who supported her.

When it comes to the so-called murder of his mother, I'll grant that there wasn't so much evidence to explain his reaction. On the other hand, there wasn't any evidence in contrary either. We know his mother is still alive and wasn't there when Rand stormed the palace but very few others do.

Allowing Siuan and Leane to escape later isn't so irrational either. They've already been tried, convicted, and punished for their crime. And he's got a far better chance of getting more information out of her if he allows her to leave Tar Valen than if she's shunned and forced to labor in the kitchen's under the watchful eyes of the Aes Sedai.
John Massey
160. subwoofer
So who are you saying is Prez?
IMHO it's Siuan. Hammar et all are defending their prez. Gawyn is stepping out on his own- against what all his upbringing should of told him.
I don't believe that in OCS they tell the guys, psssst, hey, all that stuff we told you before does not apply to you now
Blake Engholm
161. UncrownedKing
@158 Eswana

I most certainley did. I feel this one shows love to my man Perrin and all his wolfy, blacksmith, emo awesomeness. I found it sometime last week on yahoo images. How B.A. is that? Someone actually made this. Thanks for recognizing my existance, feel like a ghost in here sometimes lol.

P.S. I think we all agree Gawyn sucks the big one here, and belongs with Elaida, because well, umm, she sucks the big one too. And if there was a law against stupidity/ineptitude, She would get the Chair.
John Fitzingo
163. Xandar01
128. jotto

Wow, never noticed that orange never made an appearance. Reminds me of an assignment in a HS SciFi English class way back where we were supposed to note all the colors mentioned while reading Lord of the Rings. Wonder if anyone has done that for WOT?

As for why no orange, a quick trip to Wikipedia, and it looks like it wasn't even a word till the 14th century. I wonder if RJ added this little feature to make his old world feel more authentic on a subconscious level. Did you see the use of yellow-red somewhere instead of orange? I imagine there is plenty in the Aiel Waste.
Sparrowhawk
164. SonOfBattles
@149

There is pink. Tylin enjoys dressing Mat up in pink ribbons in Winter's Heart.
Sparrowhawk
165. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Wolfmage @155
Elaida getting rid of Gawyn isn't so much Gawyn's faulty judgment as Elaida cleaning house. I mean, let's make a list of the people most involved with deposing Siuan and raising her Amyrlin. That list would include Red sitters like Teslyn, Alviarin, Joline Maza of the Green, Shemerin (Yellow), and Danelle, plus, in a peripheral way, Gawyn for preventing Siuan's rescue. Where are 5 of these names now?
Teslyn and Joline were sent as ambassadors to a politically impotent ruler in Altara, where they eventually ran afoul of the Seanchan and Mat Cauthon. Shemerin has been stripped of the shawl and eventually left the Tower incognito. Alviarin, despite her machinations has lost her influence and is stuck in perpetual penance. Danelle(most likely Mesaana in disguise) slipped back into obscurity.
Elaida has systematically removed those individuals who might gain influence from supporting her and potentially amass enough to oppose/replace her. Talk about one ungrateful biatch.
John Fitzingo
166. Xandar01
Re the whole who is Mesaana debate:

While I think it is pretty much a foregone conclusion that Mesaana is not masquerading as Laras, couldn't Mesaana take her place for a short time to accomplish one task.

For example, the real Laras is either hiding or has been temporarily disposed of so Mesaana can take her place for an hour or so. Suppose Mesaana has observed Siuans secretive relationship with Min and knows of Laras involvement. Wanting to sow further chaos, she uses Min to free Siuan hoping to cause further trouble.

My main point, while the Foresaken take to one main disguise, we have seen instances where they adopt secondary disguises as well.
Sparrowhawk
167. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
For short term tasks. Yes totally possible. They only stick to one disguise primarily so they will have enough details to make the disguise convincing. If they want to masquerade as someone for a specific task, Lanfear has done it at least once.
Alice Arneson
168. Wetlandernw
Wolfmage@121
Don't be glib.

Whyever not??

Actually, I had to go to bed at that point, but as soon as I finish reading the remaining comments I'll have a short disseration for you regarding legal and legitimate. Unless someone else beat me to it.
Kurt Lorey
169. Shimrod
@166 Xandar01.

Either she (Laras) is, or she isn't Mesaana. Complex without reason otherwise.

Somebody said that Laras was in New Spring which does kind of leave her out, unless an unnecessary complexity was intended.

I need to review the usurper list for PoVs.
AJ MacPherson
170. Mackey62
Subwoofer @ 160

The old president is removed from office by what appears to be a legal way to the outside world. (How many actually knew the inner workings of the tower, was it common knowledge? AS don't share with anyone but everyone knows how the system works, I think not) A new president is appointed, in what appears to be lawful way. At this point, who in your mind is the lawful commander?

Then, some of the military doesn't like what happened, try to put old president back in charge. There obviously is a break in command. How is following your DI legal when he is going against the sitting President? Just wondering
Sparrowhawk
171. wsean
Re: evidence of Rand killing Morgase. Of course there's no evidence, since it didn't actually happen, but consider this: Rand led an attack on the palace at Caemlyn, and took over as ruler of Andor. Morgase was never seen nor heard from afterwards, and Rand even talks about her being dead. Those who weren't in the palace have no way of knowing she had disappeared beforehand. Rand attacks, the legit ruler disappears--Ockham's razor says he killed her.

Lindal @149-

Ah, but there is pink! I happen to have just gotten through the chapter in WH where it turns up. Tylin is displeased with Mat coming in muddy yet again, and makes him wear pink ribbons.
John Massey
172. subwoofer
@170- already answered same question in 160- horse is dead. Stop beating it.
Sparrowhawk
173. LindaL
@171 Damn, Damn, Damn. Of course you're right.
Sparrowhawk
174. Haikuproofer
How is it that one
Can make just two syllables
Of forty-seven?
Sparrowhawk
175. longtimefan
Just a note.

Morgase and Elayne are Gwayn's Queen and Queen to be. (ie President)

The Amyrlin is just the leader of Tar Valon. His first and only duty is to protect his sister.

If supporting a new Amyrlin who will make that possible is what he has to do he would do it and did.

He is young and trying to accomplish a task that is impossible if he is not near his sister.

Hammar put himself between Gwayn and his duty. It is circuitous but it is there. I wrote a longer version of this but the computer ate it.
T C
176. Freelancer
Wetlandernw@168

That's one all yours, I'll stay back.

RE: Tower Coup. A few snippets:

Danelle, on the other hand, the young Brown sister who was supposed to be watching Master Jovarin, the mason, was most likely letting herself be distracted by all the books the fellow kept finding her her. That was the only way to explain her failure to question the number of workmen Jovarin claimed to have hired, with the first shipments of stone from Kandor just arriving at Northharbor. He could rebuild the entire library with that many men. Danelle was simply too dreamy, penance would wake her.


Aside from the obvious, that Danelle was using Jovarin to bring men into Tower grounds who shouldn't be there, it's easy to pass over the tidbit about the mason getting books for Danelle. A recently awakened forsaken needs to understand what's happening in this age, to study the contemporaries, and the history between the ages. As a Brown, it is in keeping with the stereotype, and passes almost unnoticed. Siuan is aware of the behavior, which speaks to her depth of involvement in Tower activity, but thinks it simply a Brown foible. Still, a deft touch by Jordan on this detail.

"Fighting," Min said reluctantly. She had hoped the two women would be out of the Tower grounds, even out of the city, before learning of this. She herded them around the dark stains, prodded them on when they tried to look back. "It began yesterday, right after you were taken, and did not stop until maybe two hours ago. Not completely."
"You mean the Gaidin?" Leane exclaimed. "Warders, fighting each other?"
"Warders, the guardsmen, everyone. It started when some men who came claiming to be masons -- two or three hundred of them -- tried to seize the tower itself right after your arrest was announced."
Siuan scowled. "Danelle! I should have realized there was more to it than not paying attention." Her face twisted more, until Min thought she might begin crying. "Artur Hawkwing could not do it, but we did it ourselves." Edge of tears or not, her voice was fierce. "The Light help us, we have broken the Tower."


Two or three hundred hired swords, to kick the anthill and start the real fighting. I have to believe that there would have been little or no bloodshed otherwise. Aes Sedai are somewhat like senators in this regard. They may make good or bad decisions, but they do it very deliberately (read SLOWLY), because their serenity, the appearance of calm certainty, is more important than their accuracy. However, introduce enough chaos and the shell crumbles.

The tall, bronze-studded Alindrelle Gates stood open, but guarded heavily. Some guards wore the Flame of Tar Valon on their chests; others had workmen's coats and mismatched breastplates and helmets. Guardsmen, and fellows who had come disguised as masons. Both sorts looked hard and resourceful, used to their weapons, but they kept apart, eyeing each other distrustfully.


So there is no question that the extra "masons" are a mercenary band. Whether darkfriends or not cannot be said, though I suspect it would be a difficult thing to find a mercenary band of 300 willing to engage in a direct assault on White Tower guardsmen and warders unless they had a dark allegiance. Even when the main fighting is done, they are employed as supplemental guards to prevent a backlash attack, as well as perhaps keep anyone from leaving that the Black or a forsaken wants at hand. Min's arrest warrant comes to mind.

Jordan says that we've seen Mesaana as her alter-ego in the Tower. I can't imagine that the details presented here could show Danelle to be so involved in a heirarchial overthrow, including recruiting fighters with no purpose but to instigate violence, and not believe she fits the bill. If the deposing of Siuan was legal, there needn't have been fighting. The tower Aes Sedai, loyal to Elaida or not, could certainly have stopped the warders of the Blue and Green from taking violent action to free Siuan.
T C
177. Freelancer
RE: The orange

William of Orange was indeed Dutch, though he gained the reign of England and Ireland as well, and it is his status as King of England which is best remembered, so a tie-in between orange and England is natural.

However, the original posit for that on this thread presumed an anti-British bias on RJ's part, and I don't know that he would employ the lack of orange in his work to represent such, even if it were true, since his own historical acumen would view the Orange as it was, a Dutch title.
AJ MacPherson
178. Mackey62
@172 Sorry, was just trying to understand your thinking on the military heirarchy.
Ellie Virgo
179. Egglie
All this Gawyn discussion - makes me wonder if Padan Fain paid him a visit?

(no evidence whatsoever just a feeling that it would explain a lot!)
j p
180. sps49
@152 subwoofer-
Most officers do not enter via OCS but through the service academies and ROTC (dunno about Aussies, this is US practice). Unless they are prior enlisted, they do not normally endure Basic.

And there have not been any 5-stars for a looong time.

I do agree that Gawyn should of should've stayed out of an internal Aes Sedai matter instead of influencing it (then flip-flopping!), but his interpretation of events was that the Amyrlin is replaced, long live the Amyrlin. Supporting Siuan post-stilling would be useless, anyway; which is probably why Elaida had it done.

And wasn’t the stilling itself done “illegally”? In accordance with long standing Red tradition?
T C
181. Freelancer
RobMRobM@139

Matrim Cauthon's wife
"Bloody" Matrim Cauthon's bride
Daughter of Nine Moons

I'm not happy with that one. Give me some time, I'll do better.
T C
182. Freelancer
Damane trainer
Petite Empress of Seanchan
Unknown channeler?
j p
183. sps49
And Freelancer @176-
Good points, nice analysis.
Antoni Ivanov
184. tonka
@ 160. subwoofer

So who are you saying is Prez?
IMHO it's Siuan. Hammar et all are defending their prez. Gawyn is stepping out on his own- against what all his upbringing should of told him.
I don't believe that in OCS they tell the guys, psssst, hey, all that stuff we told you before does not apply to you now


I thought I am clear. Ok.
Siuan is the old President who just have been impeached by the Congress according to all laws.
And Elaida is the new President. ( there might be rumours or more that the Congress has been coerced/mupulated in some fashion.) You are General and some of your superiors decide that that's all part of conspiracy and decide to try to return the old President back. (but some are on the new President's side)
You are here and all you know that the Congress(the Hall in our case) has voted the President's impeachment. There might be rumours that's something is fishy. But you won't act on rumours now won't you.

And it's much more complicated( besides Gawyn's hatred to Siuan and the respect for Elaida that were mentioned already) because some of the powerful people ( e.i. the Blue Ajah and some of the others ajahs) don't approve of that and decide to stop that. But Elaida has done all according to the law and they cannot revert the situation by using the Hall so they decide to use power by taking Siuan out. (btw once they have Suian , Elaida will have many problems standing against the old Amyrlin that hasn't been tried and stilled yet.)
So who are you to support?

And I cannot believe the Warders decided only by themself that they would release Siuan.Obviously Sisters were involved.
T C
185. Freelancer
sps49@180

I'm out of the Gawyn debate. As with others, it has got people trying to ascribe contemporary practices and methods to prove a point that cannot be proven, so it's much too far afield for any additional input on my part to be of value.

But your reference to Red tradition has nothing to do with stilling an Aes Sedai. Their work involves men who channel, and you are referring to the laws governing how and when such a man can be legally gentled. Those laws apply to all, not just the Red.

Yes, Siuan and Leane were stilled well outside of the lawful practice of the Tower.
Sparrowhawk
186. wsean
On Gawyn: I think it is safe to assume that there was no Compulsion, no Padan Fain, no Black Ajah pushing. That would undermine the point. It was his own decision.

Gawyn's poor decision embodies one of the central themes of the WoT: that hiding information--not being truthful, nor open, not explaining yourself--has consequences, and can lead to disaster. That people who are information-poor will naturally make poor decisions. That if you want people to make good decisions, you should help them get there not by pushing or forcing them, but by being open with them.
Kurt Lorey
187. Shimrod
Just a thought. Why did Gawyn feel it necessary (I'm NOT using the word compelled here) to get involved in Tower business during the usurpation?????

Not a warder.

Not a guardsman.

Certainly not an Aes Sedai.


Hubris. A lot like his sister, sticking his nose where it doesn't belong, just because he's used to doing just about whatever he wants.

No surprise that it will come back to bite him in the behind later on.
AJ MacPherson
188. Mackey62
Yes the debate is meaningless and can't be proven one way or the other (another thing that is great about RJ, matters that people will rarely face and put people in that situation. Who knows for sure how one would react in that situation). My main thing with the whole situation is that Gawyn was stupid. Almost every WOT character has done something stupid, some alot more than one, but have had more screen time to do something awesome to make up for it. Gawyn has only had kind of cool guy, then nobody will anwer me so I am pissed and will kick major ass (rightly or wrongly) and I love my sisters best friend moments. If he goes on to bring the younglings and kneels at Egwene's feet, then gets gated to Elayne and helps her rgain the thorne, and finally goes and kicks major Trollocs and DF ass, people will start to like hime more. We have only had a limited amount of exposure to him and in those moments he seems to be thinking with the hair on his chest. :)
Sparrowhawk
189. CTyler
What I find especially fascinating is that by the end of KoD, Galad is a more likeable character than Gawyn, by a long shot.
Sparrowhawk
190. D-ruckus
toryx@5:

is asmodean really that neat or is it that he gets so much screen time in these early books? i mean, we never really have the Forsaken take on a whole lot of word count, so do we feel allegiance to the character because we get to see him so often? that's part of why RJ is so good at doing what he does (making the reader become invested in the baddies).
Kurt Lorey
191. Shimrod
Maybe readers like Asmodean because he isn't really, really mean and/or psychotic.

Maybe more the Foolish Forsaken.
Sparrowhawk
192. D-ruckus
mackey62 has the long and short of it.
Sparrowhawk
193. RobMRobM
Free: I like em, especially second one. Possible edit?

Damane trainer
Empress-to-be of Seanchan
Wife of Trickster Cauthon

Rob
John Massey
194. subwoofer
@tonka- you'd hope that if you impeach the Pres, it would be a full congress/Hall voting and not just the majority of the 20% sitting. Sorry to the horse. May it rest in peace.
j p
195. sps49
Freelancer @185-
I equate stilling and gentling as severing. The Reds have a history of extralegal activity (the "vileness" after the Aiel War) and bad Amyrlins.

Although, now that I mention it, Siuan ordered Taim to be severed immediately upon recapture. Maybe that is different (because 2 AS died during the escape).
AJ MacPherson
196. Mackey62
Gawyn killed Bela?

When did that happen? No wonder everyone hates him. I take back everything I said about him.
Antoni Ivanov
197. tonka
subwoofer; they had quorum so they had at least 50%.
Anyway, it turns out not to be the wisest decision he has ever made, but he did what he thought what was right to do. (as Elaida btw)

Yeah, really enough with that.
Sparrowhawk
198. RobMRobM
@196. No - Bela of the Brown Ajah is actually Danelle/Mesana in disguise. :-)
Hugh Arai
199. HArai
I have it now - the reason Gawyn supported the tower coup Gawyn = DO = Bela. Dang horse.
Blake Engholm
200. UncrownedKing
If Bela is the DO/Gawyn, then my theory about Narg is sooooo right.

Narg=The Creator
Sparrowhawk
201. AUgradGSUgradstudent
@#19... I'm entirely too lazy to read through all the posts and see if anyone responded to your question regarding Moiraine's message to Siuan.

"The sling has been used" is a reference to the Stone having fallen. You throw stones with a sling, so that's where the connection was designed. So Moiraine's message was that the Stone had fallen and Rand had Callandor.
Andrew Lovsness
202. drewlovs
Since I have missed the boat on commenting theories (damn classes!!), I think I'd like to try my hand at the "Rand and the three women" sub-plot. I've been married for 18 years, and cannot for the life of me figure out why any man would want more than one woman in his life; my wife says the same about men. So I tend to look at this scenario a little differently than others.

I see it as a curse. Most of us fall in love... true deep feelings... with only one person at a time. Further, think of how many times you have started feeling that way about someone, and it wasn't returned. With Rand, its all messed up; its not supposed to work this way! They all seem to agree about that point.

After reading David Eddings, and his take on prophecy and fate, I have to agree with him that "fated love" can be as big a burden as "fated death". But there always seems to be neccesity involved with that "fated love".

So, for me, it appears that there is something in Rand's future that neccesitates having not one but 3 women to be involved with. Even some of the prophecy we have seen indicates this. Whether Jordan ultimately justifies it remains to be seen, though now that he can no longer finish the work himself, it might never be answered.
Sparrowhawk
203. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
drewlovs @202
Good point. I always thought that Rand's three women allowed him a very wide reach with regards to the social structure of the Westlands. He has a miner's daughter, a queen, and a wise one/warrior/social outcast.

It ties him to the various groups that support him. Be they high-born, common, or Aiel.
Sparrowhawk
204. toryx
D-ruckus @ 190:

I find Asmodean to be the most interesting of the Forsaken because he breaks the pattern. He's not in it for the power (except for survival) or out of arrogance or hatred. He's all about living forever for the music. I also get the sense that to some degree he's fascinated by the changes that have occurred in the past 3000 years of his imprisonment. He's taken the time to learn the music and hear the old stories.

I wouldn't say I like him or even feel much sympathy for him. He's definitely evil and doesn't deserve redemption. But he's also the closest we get to seeing the new world from the eyes of the old and I like that his music is a mixture of both.
Sparrowhawk
205. Mark-S
One tiny footnote, I know I'm not the only one who has noticed that the word orange has never appeared in any of tWoT books

Thats because Romanda and Elaida don't become pillow friends until AMOL Part III

On the Mesaana identity, I'm siding with the masses and voting for Danelle. There was a scene when Alviarin leaves Elaida's office and Danelle is standing near by. Alviarin then heads back to her room, meets Mesaana who happens to know everything that was said in Elaida's office.
Sparrowhawk
206. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
toryx @204
Yeah. He actually sang something that was straight out of the Trolloc Wars or something like that. And the funny part of it was, he was supposed to be imprisoned at the time.
Alice Arneson
207. Wetlandernw
Well, probably no one really wants to read it by now, but I promised a dissertation on Legal vs. Legitimate (as re: the events of this chapter) so by gum here it is. (BTW, dissertation is used very loosely here. I'll try to be as concise as possible.)

The primary definition of "legitimate" is, as I so glibly noted before, "being in compliance with the law; lawful". There are, of course, more definitions, having to do with concepts like "established or accepted patterns and standards"; "reasonable"; "authentic" and a few others that don't have anything to do with this kind of situation.

I submit that when "legitimate" is used to mean something other than "legal" it implies another higher standard of lawfulness. In our society (speaking from the western world, but also from the medieval European perspective from which WoT derives so much of its flavor), whether we explicity acknowledge it or not, we do have such a higher standard. (I won't say more on that because I refuse to discuss serious theology on this forum.) Therefore, when we claim that something is legal but not legitimate, we are referring to that "established or accepted pattern or standard" to defend our claim, which is basically that, legal or not, the "something" is unlawful in a higher sense.

In WoT, you don't have that higher authority. The Creator didn't give the world his revealed will in a book. This is one of the things RJ didn't touch, I'm sure for many reasons. The upshot is, however, very pertinent to this case. As far as Aes Sedai are concerned, Tower Law IS the Ultimate Authority, particularly as regards Tower affairs. That's why however much they hate it, as long as it met the letter of the law they will never declare it illegitimate. (Not to say they won't write a few new statutes to make sure it doesn't happen again, mind you!) So I'm convinced that even if/when BA influence in the coup is revealed, that will not make the AS declare it illegitimate. After all, nothing in the Law says that BA involvement is illegal. (Remember, I'm taking this from the AS perspective, not 21st-century America or wherever you're from.)

Now, on a slightly different slant, here's what I think happened, in the thinking of the AS:

A quorum is defined by Tower Law as 11 (of 21 total) Sitters. The Greater Consensus is defined as the unanimous agreement of those present. In the case of deposing Siuan, there were 11 Sitters in unanimous agreement, so it was legal (and legitimate). However, when it came to raising Elaida to Amyrlin, even though they did it in the same meeting, there was no longer a quorum because in standing for Amyrlin, Elaida was no longer a Sitter and thus they only had 10. Therefore, she is NOT legally elected and can be declared "usurper". (The really funny thing is that if they had taken five minutes to declare a new Red Sitter to replace Elaida, they'd have had 11 again.)

This, of course, raises an interesting situation. With Elaida standing for Amyrlin, 10 sitters support her and 10 oppose (from the safety of Salidar, of course). Which group has the right to raise a new Amyrlin? You answer that one.

I will freely acknowledge that RJ never spelled it out in that detail, but I'm pretty sure that's what he was getting at. Probably the only way to prove it would be to have Harriet quote us RJs notes on the subject. It could be disproved the same way, of course, or possibly someone here will find a quotation I missed. But there you have it. There's my dissertation of the day. Wow, it got long in spite of my attempt to keep it concise. *sigh* Brevity and I aren't exactly buddies either.

Oh, and regarding the treatment of Siuan and Leane, I don't recall that anyone ever claims that it was either legal or legitimate except maybe Elaida, and even she just claims it was necessary, not legal. (Siuan did plenty of that herself, btw.) It's quite clear that stilling without a fair trial is not legal. It just gets done sometimes anyway.
Michael Catapano
208. hoping
wetlandernw
nice discussion
The chapter we just read indicates that 'more than a dozen women led by Elaida' confronted Siuan in her study so I thought they met criteria.
Sydo Zandstra
209. Fiddler
Freelancer@177:

RE: The orange

William of Orange was indeed Dutch, though he gained the reign of England and Ireland as well, and it is his status as King of England which is best remembered, so a tie-in between orange and England is natural.

However, the original posit for that on this thread presumed an anti-British bias on RJ's part, and I don't know that he would employ the lack of orange in his work to represent such, even if it were true, since his own historical acumen would view the Orange as it was, a Dutch title.



That was Dutch William III, who married towards the English throne, and descendant of THE William of Orange (who led the wars that are at the base of the founding of the Republic of The Netherlands).

Indeed, Dutch influence on England was too low and short to make RJ notice the colour from British history. BTW, the name Orange comes from the countship of Orange (in France), which is one of the titles our Royal House has.

Here ends Dutch history 101 ;)


English national colours have always involved red and white. Not orange. :)
Jay Dauro
210. J.Dauro
@207 and @208

Sitters voting.

See the FAQ

The Mystery of the Too Young Sitters

for a list of who voted to depose Siuan.

Of 21 Sitters
11 Voted to depose Siuan and remained in the Tower
9 did not vote (were not called) and fled the Tower
1 did not vote(was not called) and remained in the Tower.

So there were 11 at the Hall (as wetlandernw says) and one was Elaida. So nope, only 10 to vote for Elaida as Amirlyn.

Of the over 12 AS that accompany Elaida on the capture of Siuan, many are not sitters ( Alviarin, Danelle, Joline Maza, Shemerin, Andaya, Evanellein and Javindhra.)
David Dudley
211. Warspoon
I think that it is important to note that Wolfmage never said that the Aes Sedai will/should declare that what was done was or was not legitimate. Wolfmage is saying that, according to the tenets of a representative democracy/republic, no decision reached without the participation (or the option of participation) of all the involved parties can be considered legitimate. It may be legal. It may follow the letter of the law. It is not legitimate.
John Massey
212. subwoofer
Thank you Wetlander@207- I think that gets to the heart of the matter of whether or not Elaida was legit. I was going to put it out there and right or wrong I can live with the results. So thanks for cutting to the chase.
- my browser &google seem to be ignorant so it was like moving heaven and earth to get to this point.
Sparrowhawk
213. ValanVinyl
Ok here's my first Haiku ever:

Damn Snakes and Foxes
Battle ensues in my Mind
I am a Badass.

@ Freelancer 176

Ok you've converted me.
Alice Arneson
214. Wetlandernw
Warspoon @211

And I'm saying that Wolfmage's basic assumptions do not apply to Aes Sedai. He repeatedly bases his definitions of "legitimate" on a modern understanding of procedural validity. I could give you the whole raft of quotes from his posts if you want them, but it boils down to this. The White Tower is not a democracy. Certain aspects of its structure resemble a republic, but only to a degree. Placing the "tenets of a representative democracy/republic" as the standard by which Tower matters should be viewed is purely and simply irrelevant. That's one example of what I meant in my first "glib" (a.k.a. snarky) comment about unfounded assumptions. You can take all your high-flying ideals of about how things ought to work in a democracy or a repulic, and as far as this situation is concerned, you can flush them down the toilet. That's not how the Tower works. Our ideas of "legitimate" simply don't apply, and it's a silly foundation for an argument.

I don't think a single reader of the books would say it was "legitimate" by our standards. It was totally unfair, sneaky, underhanded and all that. (And I haven't heard anyone yet claim to be an Elaida fan.) No one has argued that. But BY THEIR STANDARDS it was legal, therefore legitimate. That's all I'm saying.

And I haven't touched his "tainted by the BA" issues...

Come to think of it, I won't. I have actual work to be done this afternoon, and I'm spending all my energy on this. Gah.
Richard Fife
215. R.Fife
Completely off topic update on JordanCon videos.

For those afraid of the PortalStones website for slowness, a guy is uploading the videos to YouTube Here. You will notice that is a user link, not a video link. See, no RickRolling.

And you will also notice I'm not touching the current discussion with a ten foot pole. I'm eating popcorn on the sidelines.
Alice Arneson
216. Wetlandernw
I think I need to return to my cold drink and lawn chair approach. Snarky comments are a lot less exhausting than passionate dissertations.
Peter Nein
217. gimpols1908
So i haven't read through all the comments yet, but I am reading a bit ahead right now (LOC) and Ordeth(Mordeth)mentions (pg 5??) planting some seeds within Elaida and Pedron Niall. He mentions that they might be able to trust their own mothers now, barely.

So at some point Ordeth has some influence there that could have some sort of influence over events, but it all seemed to happen off screen.
craig thrift
218. gagecreedlives
gimpols1908@217

Ordeth (or Fain or whatever the f*ck he is calling himself these days)goes to the white tower later on to retrieve the ruby dagger and does have some influence with Elaida.

But all this happens later on in the series when Elaida is well and truly in power. I dont have my books handy and the WOT encyclopaedia doesnt seem to want to work today but he kills an accepted and Alviarin busts him but lets him go.

And R.Fife it is some tasty popcorn today isnt it
Sparrowhawk
219. Wolfmage
@159 toryx,
“Oh, I'm sure Elaida had plenty of evidence to present that Siuan has been up to no good, if not outright proof that she's Black Ajah.

Sure, I don’t deny is room for off-camera manoeuvres by Elaida which we may infer, but it isn’t a good, solid foundation for justifying his behaviour like some seem to think. I just can’t make the leap required to go from contempt for Siuan to killing Hammar, but that’s just me. Also, the account highly suggests a very spontaneous response by the Younglings not a deliberative one, which matches up with the speedy interrogation and stilling represented in the test.

“She could never have persuaded enough Sitters of the Hall to support her if she didn't.”

As I argue above, I don’t accept that this form of argument carries much weight. Clearly Elaida only just managed to achieve a Greater Consensus from a tiny minority of Hall sitters who were actually present at that meeting with what she had, and she had the BA pulling strings to sow discord and round up critical support from the Whites.

I don’t doubt that publicity about Siuan’s activities may well have invited wide disapprobation from her peers, but we are talking about a deposing and stilling someone, a virtual death sentence without a single right of reply from Siuan in the Hall. You forget that the Hall could have raked Siuan over the coals, given her penance, exiled her, or simply reigned in her balance of power with the Hall so she was more accountable. None of those options would be denied them by having a proper meeting, the only thing it indicates is the lack of consensus of what actually happened. If regicide was such a widely shared appropriate response to such conduct, Elaida would not have had to orchestrate the dodgy emergency Hall meeting in the first place, and there would be no question about the integrity of the process. Fact is, the actions taken were so beyond the pale to many sisters that it split the Tower.

”There can be little question that Gawyn had all the evidence he needed to stand against Siuan and anyone who supported her.”

Saying that doesn’t make it true; as it is off-camera we can either assume it in good faith because it mitigates Gawyn’s actions somewhat, or reject it on lack of evidence. Personally, I don’t think the narrative plays out like. I think the text better bears the interpretation that Gawyn acted in a more spontaneous fashion and that the interrogation was the main avenue for gleaning information. I don’t think Elaida had time to spare or motive to be consulting Gawyn with everything going on.

I don’t think it is consistent with Elaida’s character that she would include Gawyn in her counsels. If anything, Elaida as a Red is more contemptuous of men and non-power wielders than Siuan, and she had no reason to think she would need Gawyn to stave off a fifth column in the Warders. I’d say such foresight is manifestly unlikely given the demonstrable flaws in her personality and short-sightedness we see proven time and again.



”When it comes to the so-called murder of his mother, I'll grant that there wasn't so much evidence to explain his reaction. On the other hand, there wasn't any evidence in contrary either. We know his mother is still alive and wasn't there when Rand stormed the palace but very few others do.”

Extraordinary claims need extraordinary evidence. Gawyn’s mother the Queen Morgase certainly knew that when she let Rand go from the Royal Palace in Caemlyn unmolested, and Gawyn as a Prince of Andor, with all the education and values that this entails should certainly know that as well.

Can I also just say as a matter of logic and epistemology, it is silly to say there is no proof she wasn’t killed by Rand – that simply assumes the onus of proof backward. I don’t believe in invisible pink unicorns for example. But even if I hear a rumour of such a magic being, it is not logically for me to assume they do, on no real evidence, and then assert that I will continue to believe this until I see proof it doesn’t exist.

The idea of proving a negative like this is a logical absurdity known as such since antiquity and the birth of philosophy. Any decent ruler of a Greek city state, or a Roman principality, for example, would be trained not to make such a rudimentary error.

“They've already been tried, convicted, and punished for their crime.”

What trial? What conviction? These are words that apply in a criminal justice system and do not fit these institutions.

Siuan got summary judgement from a legislative body which met in secret with a minority of its members. The way she was punished was the equivalent of the old Parliamentary attainder system – where a legislative body passes a special act of criminal law which applies to detain and sanction one person. There’s a good reason why these were abolished in our world because they are a farce.

@ 168. Wetlandernw
“I'll have a short disseration for you regarding legal and legitimate. Unless someone else beat me to it.”

Be my guest. I’ve said just about all I’m going to say on that subject, however.

@171. wsean

“Re: evidence of Rand killing Morgase. Of course there's no evidence, since it didn't actually happen, but consider this: Rand led an attack on the palace at Caemlyn, and took over as ruler of Andor. Morgase was never seen nor heard from afterwards, and Rand even talks about her being dead. Those who weren't in the palace have no way of knowing she had disappeared beforehand. Rand attacks, the legit ruler disappears--Ockham's razor says he killed her.”

Sorry, but you’re committing a common fallacy of mistaking the meaning of Ockham’s Razor (OR) here. OR does not actually mean the laziest explanation we can think of about any situation is usually right. That would be a terrible rule of thumb. OR is actually about trying to understand and interpret phenomenon, within the paradigm of the scientific method, and it suggests that those theories which involve the most parsimony and least amount of extraneous supposition etc., are frequently the best fit for explaining said phenomena. They are completely different ideas.

Gawyn actually has no evidence that Rand killed Morgase. He hasn’t returned to Andor, investigated the rumour in even a cursory way, or encountered any kind of real non-hearsay testimony to support the allegation. In fact, the women he is in super-special love with has testified contrarily to Rand’s character, and he knows his own sister supports Rand as well. But both the supergirls are ignored in favour of rumour.


@186. wsean
“On Gawyn: I think it is safe to assume that there was no Compulsion, no Padan Fain, no Black Ajah pushing. That would undermine the point. It was his own decision.

Gawyn's poor decision embodies one of the central themes of the WoT: that hiding information--not being truthful, nor open, not explaining yourself--has consequences, and can lead to disaster. That people who are information-poor will naturally make poor decisions. That if you want people to make good decisions, you should help them get there not by pushing or forcing them, but by being open with them.”

I agree with all that. Both Siuan and Elayne, in the case of Gawyn, and basically all WOT characters more broadly, need to practice better stakeholder management on the side of light. It is understandable where there is uncertainty about darkfriends, Foresaken and BA that you must play very close to your chest, but inter-gender communication between lightfriend is particularly terrible in WOT.

@187. Shimrod
”Hubris. A lot like his sister, sticking his nose where it doesn't belong, just because he's used to doing just about whatever he wants.

No surprise that it will come back to bite him in the behind later on.”

Yeah it was pretty much an overweening sense of something. Funny though, as he didn’t achieve anything except killing a cool character in Hammar and helping Elaida bring the world into disarray. Unfortunately it looks unlikely he will get comeuppance in the books given it will harm Egwene through the bond.
Roger Powell
220. forkroot
jotto@128
RJ on colors...

No mention of orange, hah! It gets worse ... there's nary a peep for cerise, magenta, cyan, nor mauve. And even worse - nothing described as "lemon chiffon".

However; considering the frequent discussions of how much bosom is exposed by a female character's dress, we may infer "flesh tones".
Peter Nein
221. gimpols1908
@220. forkroot However; considering the frequent discussions of how much bosom is exposed by a female character's dress, we may infer "flesh tones".

LOL... yes there does seem to be much mention of 'tan' and 'pale'(pink i presume) :)

218. gagecreedlives Fain already has the dagger back in TDR (i believe) and has not time to get the horn. The part I am discussing is only a few months after the tower split. There is no way (timeline issues?) that Fain could have gone from duotopia to influence within the white tower that quick and be close to DR when he is doing his Cam/Car hopping in LOC. So there must have been some point before when he could spread his influence to Eliada. But, on the other hand there is a man in my head telling me to smash the seals, so perhaps I am a bad source of Info :)
Richard Fife
222. R.Fife
@221:
The Tower had the dagger for healing Mat in TDR. They put it in a lead box and stashed it with the horn. After TSR and T2R debacle, Fain heads off to the White Tower and "advises" Elaida, thus influencing her. He does not stay long, just long enough to make sure she will never trust Rand, then tried to steal the dagger and horn. He gets the dagger, but was caught by Alv and had to book it out of the tower after she released him, so no time for the horn. He then had most of the time of TFoH to go about Cam/Cair hopping as needed.
craig thrift
223. gagecreedlives
gimpols1908@221

Just found some chapter summaries. Its in tFoH prologue that Fain is seen with Elaida and its chapter 19 'Memories' when Fain reclaims the dagger.

*EDIT* Ahhhh R.Fife beat me to it.
Alice Arneson
224. Wetlandernw
Wolfmage @219

Not to pick on you personally, but you keep making me do this...

Siuan got summary judgement from a legislative body which met in secret with a minority of its members.

I keep trying to tell you it was NOT a minority of its members. It was a Tower-Law-abiding QUORUM defined as 11 Sitters, which is just barely a majority of its normal total 21 members of the Hall.

And I think I finally figured out why I had to get out of my lawn chair in the first place. You launched into this big discussion of legal and legitimate regarding the coup etc. Those are the same (and virtually only) terms in which the AS discuss same within the books. What got me involved is that you use the same words with different meanings. You define "legitimate" in terms of 21st century concepts of democracy and fair play, not in terms of AS and WoT concepts of law and tradition. If you had chosen, e.g., "ethical" I'd have just quietly kept on sipping my lovely drink with the little umbrella.
Chris Hall
225. bookwormchris
It is highly possible that the BA was working on both sides of the coup. (Also, I don't think anyone mentioned Egwene's experience in the rings as a parallel to this coup. At least not in this reread comment section.) We certainly see BA involvement in both sides of the split Tower later on. It doesn't mean that they necessarily instigated the whole thing, but they would certainly not be against providing some help to either party. The more chaos they can sow now, the less prepared the Light will be for the Last Battle.

The mercenaries (masons) make we wonder if any of those that were involved here end up also being involved in the whole Andoran Civil War. I'm not sure that they'd all have to be Darkfriends to agree to participate in the Tower coup, but we can be sure they were very well paid for it. Or at least that they were promised vast sums. (I guess they could be DFs or they could have been quietly eliminated after their help. We don't really know for sure.)
Lannis .
226. Lannis
@ R.Fife & gagecreed... Dammit! You guys have popcorn?! All I've got is this damn tutu--and it's not even orange!
Sparrowhawk
227. Wolfmage
Wetlandernw @224.

Siuan got summary judgement from a legislative body which met in secret with a minority of its members.

”I keep trying to tell you it was NOT a minority of its members. It was a Tower-Law-abiding QUORUM defined as 11 Sitters, which is just barely a majority of its normal total 21 members of the Hall.”

To be fair to me, it’s only just now that I saw your quote about the actual numbers constituting a Quorum. I'm sorry if I missed it previously. I had actually thought the full Hall must be more than 21, but I concede I am probably incorrect on this. So, assuming you have textual support for it, I concede it was not a minority of the Sitters. It was 52.3%, with 47.7% excluded - not exactly a compelling endorsement of popular will amongst the Sitter but better than a tiny minority.

I would say that does tend to bolster your argument about the unimpeachably of the legalities, which I was maintaining was more a grey area, but as I don’t have textual support for notice requirement in Tower Law we will just leave it there. Otherwise I stand on the previous points I have made about the legitimacy of the process.

”You launched into this big discussion of legal and legitimate regarding the coup etc. Those are the same (and virtually only) terms in which the AS discuss same within the books.”

They aren’t the same in any world, just as a triangle isn’t a square in any world. Part of the meaning of legitimacy is that it encompasses norms other than purely legal norms. As I’ve already said the only way out of talking past each other is to define our terms. Both of us can be right if we are using different definitions.

“What got me involved is that you use the same words with different meanings. You define "legitimate" in terms of 21st century concepts of democracy and fair play, not in terms of AS and WoT concepts of law and tradition. If you had chosen, e.g., "ethical" I'd have just quietly kept on sipping my lovely drink with the little umbrella.”

Yes, if you refer back to a previous post of mine I make clear already that I think we are using different definition of legitimacy. You are using it as a synonym for legality in the narrow sense, I am not.

But I do note you have already conceded by your narrow definition that Elaida’s election as Amyrlin was illegal if not Siuan’s removal. So there is nonetheless a crisis of legitimacy in Elaida's usurpation of power under either of our definition.

So overall, I still think that the mantra of Elaida as the lawful Amyrlin is not supported.
craig thrift
228. gagecreedlives
Well Lannis you are more than welcome to come have some of mine. And I even think I might have a spare orange tutu lying around.
Alice Arneson
229. Wetlandernw
Was it, Cadsuane that called Elaida "lawful Amyrlin"? I've always assumed that either she didn't know what the actual proceedings had been (she was quite definitely out of the Tower at the time), or that she was going on the idea that "those who are in the (physical) White Tower acknowledge her, therefore by definition she is lawful." Always bugged me, but there it is.

As to my "narrow definition" of legitimate, I keep trying to explain that I'm using it the same way the AS use it in WoT. I personally acknowledge a higher authority than our government, so I see a lot of things done that are "legal" by the law of the land but not "legitimate" by that higher authority. In this context I'm using the terms the way they are used by the characters in the books. And I was trying to say that while you and the AS are using pretty close to the same definition of "legal", you are using a vastly different definition of "legitimate" than they (AS) would recognize.

As to Elaida's election as Amyrlin, I've never believed it was legal. My statement up there somewhere is the way I've pulled together bits and pieces of what the SAS say, RJ's inputs, and all that jazz. Down the way a few books, the SAS Hall declares Elaida usurper and declare war on her. I'm working on the assumption that they wouldn't try that without some legal basis, and that seems to fit with what I can find.
Alice Arneson
230. Wetlandernw
Now, where's my drink? Can I have some popcorn? But I'd look awful in a tutu so count me outa that.
sandi vogel
231. sinfulcashew
Wow! After reading these comments, I find I am out of my league.
You all seem to be lawyers, psychologists, college graduates, poets, and the list goes on!

My one poem was 'penned' during an Easter assembly in high school (50's)
"I am empty.....I have no emotion.....nothing.'
At the time I thought it was a strange thing to think during the festivities at the time.

I had a comment on Gawyns 'love at first sight'.
He held back because of his brothers seeming interest at first. It took her awhile to see the disparity between them and then found 'twu luv' later?

As to legalities etc., I leave that with you attorney types.
I was shocked when it happened and thought oh no this can't be happening. Ha!
I justly thought Elaida was pulling a sh***y(?)
I don't remember if there was much pre-dialog(wrong word?) leading up the the event. Just suddenly there they were in Siuans office.

I keep thinking (hair on fire) that all this discussion is moot?
It is RJ's writing of a story about a place and time that is kind of irrelevant to our ways now.

Please if you are going to throw anything, make it strawberries! Thank you!
&(* *)&
Alice Arneson
232. Wetlandernw
sinfulcashew @231
...It is RJ's writing of a story about a place and time...

Yes, this is what cracks me up all the time. Especially when I fall into it myself. We get SO wound up about the characters' behavior, "what-if" things to pieces, and generally carry on as if these were real people and events. As you say, it's all a figment of RJ's imagination, and he could make a character do whatever he wants/needs, regardless of whether we think the motivation adequate.

As I've said before, this is one of the things that make WoT stand out in the fantasy genre - RJ had a real ability to craft characters that make us react to them as people, and a world that draws us in to itself, so that we really CARE what happens to these people and this world. He was such a gifted storyteller that he engenders real passion for the story in his readers.

Or possibly, we're all just nuts. Or strawberries.
John Massey
233. subwoofer
It's actually snowing(wtf!) outside on my newly built deck so there will be no lawn chairs in my immediate future. On the other hand, checking posts from my Lay-z-boy works too. Skippin' the popcorn going straight for the nachos and salsa...
Orange? Maybe some juice... am on the wagon for the next little bit... 'K, maybe a little vodka...
Hugh Arai
234. HArai
Wolfmage @227:

But I do note you have already conceded by your narrow definition that Elaida’s election as Amyrlin was illegal if not Siuan’s removal. So there is nonetheless a crisis of legitimacy in Elaida's usurpation of power under either of our definition


Doesn't that simply sum up the point of view of the Salidar Aes Sedai? Siuan's removal was legal and Elaida's raising was not. So they raise their own puppet...


So overall, I still think that the mantra of Elaida as the lawful Amyrlin is not supported


What mantra? If you're refering to the fact Elaida's supporters call her the lawful Amyrlin, of course they do. They wanted to put her in charge in the first place!

I haven't noticed a lot of readers saying Elaida is the rightful Amyrlin. They've been pointing out to you that Siuan's removal was legal by Tower law, whether we approve of that law or not.

And (since I can flog a dead quadruped as well as anyone) I'll point out since Siuan's removal was legal, Gawyn preventing Hammar from freeing Siuan is supporting the rule of law. Contrary to what the "Gawyn is a noble, trained in governance and military chain of command - how dare he do such a thing" crowd says.
John Massey
235. subwoofer
@234 *between sips* already conceded at 212*sip* poor Bela. Can't remember if she was an orange horse...
craig thrift
236. gagecreedlives
She wasnt an orange horse until I covered her in cheddar cheese. She went well with the fava beans and a nice chianti.
Hugh Arai
238. HArai
@235: Bela is the DO. She can be any color she wants. And you know, it's not surprising she's Lord of the Grave. What could be more dead than a dead horse?
Sparrowhawk
239. toddywatts
On the hasty romance of Gawyn & Egwene, after they've been hanging around for a while, doesn't Egwene start paying more attention to Gawyn, and doesn't Elayne push Egwene toward Gawyn?

There's nothing to say that Hammar and the others wouldn't have died without Gawyn's intervention, is there? I mean, some may have supposed, but that's not the same as fact.

Also, I think the real lesson here isn't that secrets can be damaging to your goals, but that lack of character definitely is. I think the real mistake Siuan and Elayne made was in overestimating Gawyn. He should have had enough trust and faith in them to let them do what they think is right. I don't think he ever once asked if he could help, or really tried to understand and help.

I also can't help saying that I think the Salidar Aes Sedai delighted in telling Siuan that what was done to her was just and legal. They all blame her for their current situation.
Peter Nein
240. gimpols1908
@238. HArai

Bad Horse? (see Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along blog)
John Massey
241. subwoofer
Is it me or is there a lot of blademasters floating around out there?
Seems like every other person Rand fights or meets is a blade master. Then there is Hammar, I guess Gawyn is now, Galad, what'shispickle that Galad fights, Tam.... swinging a cat, hitting blade masters left and right(er, sorry R.Fife). Must be giving the title out over the 'net.
Sparrowhawk
242. Wolfmage
HArai @234

"Doesn't that simply sum up the point of view of the Salidar Aes Sedai? Siuan's removal was legal and Elaida's raising was not. So they raise their own puppet..."

Yes it does, and I think that textually that perspective is clearly more validated than that of Elaida's regime.

"What mantra? If you're refering to the fact Elaida's supporters call her the lawful Amyrlin, of course they do. They wanted to put her in charge in the first place!"

Cadsuane was not involved yet she called Elaida the lawful Amyrlin. The point is the claim is truth assessable regardless of the motives of the author of the claim. It can be right or wrong, or bear varying degrees of plausibility. That's what we're talking about here.

"I haven't noticed a lot of readers saying Elaida is the rightful Amyrlin. They've been pointing out to you that Siuan's removal was legal by Tower law, whether we approve of that law or not."

Well the implication was there in a lot of the comments suggesting that Gawyn actions were not those of someone wading into the murky depths of Aes Sedai power politics, but rather of someone making a simple lawful good calculation about the self-evident legality of Elaida's usurpation.

We've been debating now for a while the various issues of legality and legitimacy, and I think there has been remarkably little rancour, and some definite progress.

I've been convinced that Siuan's removal was more legally compliant than I thought, mainly due to the total number of Sitters (doh! 3*7=21), despite my ongoing hostility to the lack of notice and BA involvement, which I believe undermines it. But from Wetlandernw's insight and investigative skills we have reason to wonder about Elaida's vote in her own election because she did not recuse herself.

"I'll point out since Siuan's removal was legal, Gawyn preventing Hammar from freeing Siuan is supporting the rule of law. Contrary to what the "Gawyn is a noble, trained in governance and military chain of command - how dare he do such a thing" crowd says."

Actually no that doesn't follow at all. Since when does Gawyn's extra-judicial attack on a Tower Warder become enforcing the rule of law? Do we know his intentions? No. Do we know what he knew about the status of Siuan's usurpation or Elaida election under law or custom? No. Do we have good reason to believe he is reasonable informed about it? No. Do we have evidence of extraneous motives? Yes. Is he endowed with status of a Tower guard or Warder, empowered to act in defence of the Tower's prerogative or the office of the Amyrlin? No. At best he is a private person acting on vigilante impulse which happens to support Siuan's arrest - but not Elaida election. Calling it a defence of the rule of law is ridiculous.
Jay Dauro
243. J.Dauro
subwoofer @241

Well I don't know that I'd say we can hardly swing a cat ...

So far we have seen 7 for sure and 2 possibles in this age. With another 3 known from before. At least according to

Blademasters

and I don't remember any others. I guess Rand is just lucky that way.
Sparrowhawk
244. Wolfmage
toddywatts @ 239

"He should have had enough trust and faith in them to let them do what they think is right. I don't think he ever once asked if he could help, or really tried to understand and help."

That's a good point. I definitely think it cuts both ways, as I blame Siuan and Elayne as well, but too often it's just assumed that Gawyn was pushed into a corner with a total failure of imagination about how he could have handled being kept in the dark differently with more maturity and prudence.
John Massey
245. subwoofer
'K, including Forsaken that brings the count to 12, with Gaidal Cain, dunno why he wouldn't be considered a blade master, that is 13. Poor kitty. Sure to be a couple more cropping up in the next book or two...unless that magic number 13 means something. I read Masquerade of the Red Death and they always talked about the numbers meaning something... and what about the "master of the blades" thing, Mat was going on about. Not saying he is a blademaster, just that there may be more in the Sea Folk or the Seanchan...
Joseph Blaidd
246. SteelBlaidd
In reading through this thread it occured to me that Gawyn is set up to mirror the other young man we have running around hating the person who "killed" his parental unit, namely Dain Bornhald. Both are convinced, on scanty evidence, that one particular person is responsible for the Death of a beloved parent and that if they just kill said person every thing will be all right with the world again. It seams to me that RJ wanted to show that anybody can get fixated on a wrong idea, especially when emotionally stressed, not just the "bad guys."

Regarding why Egwene and Gawyn get the special magnetic dreams and the other dream walkers do not. Remember Meliane had the basic level version with her new husband Bael and that all consuming passion has traditionally been the province of Hormonal Teenagers since well before Romeo and Juliet. Poor Gawyn has had just enough exposure to Egwene to fall in to the first stages of a grand passion of unrequited Love and then she disappears in such a way that all he can do is worry and obsess about her being gone. On top of that he's convinced that she likes his much more deserving Big Brother/Idol. Of course he's irrational and full of all consuming passion.

Now I like Gawyn. I think he is making perfectly understandable decisions based on his knowledge and emotional state. Having been treated like a mushroom it's no surprise he gets a little soft in the head :-P.

Of course Suian and the Supergirls didn't have much choice in the matter either. Had any of them tried to explain and or recruit him to go off chasing the BA for the sake of this guy his sister met once and who is fated to go mad and is famous for killing his whole family he would have made a HUGE scene and the jig would have been up all on the whole operation. It would have been "rescue them from the bootmaker" all over the place and probably gotten everybody killed by the end of book 2.

As to why he dosn't take Egwene's word that Rand didn't kill his Mom. He has heard no rumors that any one else did and to him Rand is not "Boy I grew up with who is doing his level best to do an impossible job", nor " Cute Guy who listens when I talk politics and kisses really well and with whom I wish to make lots, and lots and lots of babies," but "Worst threat the world has faced in 3000 years and probably in need of an extended stay at Dr Jerry's House of Fun." His job is to make sure Elayne is SAFE, not happy, not emotionally fulfilled, not romantically compleate, but SAFE.

I think it's a miricle the poor boy is keeping it together as well as he is.
Ofer Nave
247. odigity
Excellent thread. A++++ Would recommend.

BTW-Wolfmage, are you by any chance a fan of Freedomain Radio?

Lastly... Go Orange.
sandi vogel
248. sinfulcashew
wetlander@232
Thinking back on the previous posts, it's curious that so many people got really 'hot' regarding some of the others comments.
As has been said before a few times-WTF?
Just because someone has a different take on the story is no excuse to get all riled up!
I'm glad everyone has settled in to posting with 'niceness'. Makes it easier to respond in kind.
Just my pacifist attitude showing.
It is just a story.....a fantastic one to be sure, but.....!
Hope no one takes offense here, as it is only MHO!
Kevin Morgan
249. DrMorganstien
@240 gimpols1908
Bad Horse? (see Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along blog)
YAY! I referenced Dr. Horrible a while back and no one caught it. I demand us to be friends

I don't know that I've ever seen a dead-er(?) horse than the Gawyn/legal/legit debate, but I do so enjoy this discussion. It makes me feel smart just for understanding everyone's points.

yum, popcorn
John Massey
250. subwoofer
Yup, I think there could be worse things to get passionate over than this series of books.not pacifism, I have seen people die and this is a clear cut case of not life and death- unless my wife kills me for being on the computer for so long. We are not discussing espionage or my RRSP's going up in smoke so it is nice escapism. Until September... and kick off time...
Sparrowhawk
251. Wolfmage
@246. SteelBlaidd

Interesting perspective there. Certainly more multidimensional and nuanced than some other posters defending Gawyn.

I love your observation about the mirroring in Gawyn's and Bornhald's views. Very astute and clever of you.

Re: dream suckage - yeah, that's true about Melaine, but as far as we know that type of lessor suckage works on anyone with strong emotions looking in, so it is pretty standard and doesn't take away from the unique status of Gawyn's version.

The reason I get annoyed with this type of suckage is because 1) I already don't like Gawyn that much because of his actions; 2) I find his conception of romance to be kind of juvenile as represented in the dream; 3) I think before him and Egwene actually hook up there is actually very little meat to their relationship to substantiate it, plus the whole Galad crush thing.

So, given all that I don't like the idea of this young crush getting endowed with some kind of transcendental significant through a super-rare TAR effect that even most Wise Ones, who are charismatic, long-lived people don't know about. I just think it arbitrarily robs these awesome characters of some kind extra metaphysically outstanding love to build up that relationship where it wasn't done real heavy lifting.

Having said that, I do take your remarks. it's probably better just not to dwell on the metaphysical significant of TAR dreamspace as a way of measuring special love. Also, I should be careful to remember that it is probably a purely one-way effect - so isn't really bearing on reciprocity of affection in the relationship. Indeed, I guess it is entirely possible for some unrequited obsession to have this effect.

But that framework would be a lot easier to swallow if the effect wasn't introduced in comparison to another super special Wise One who also generated that adoration amongst a Husband and a rival for another husband's interest. RJ seems to be conflating the formidableness of the subject of the love, with the effect.

So I still think RJ is forcing us to acknowledge "love" in a hammer-handed way.

"Of course Suian and the Supergirls didn't have much choice in the matter either. Had any of them tried to explain and or recruit him to go off chasing the BA for the sake of this guy his sister met once and who is fated to go mad and is famous for killing his whole family he would have made a HUGE scene and the jig would have been up all on the whole operation. It would have been "rescue them from the bootmaker" all over the place and probably gotten everybody killed by the end of book 2. "

I do think that they could have handled him better, but yes, there were likely reasons for him not being consulted. He is more like Galad than he would care to admit. I think there is little doubt that he would try to get underfoot and claim the right of First-Prince Protector or whatever to prevent them doing what needs to be done, if it was actually disclosed that they were chasing the BA.
Hugh Arai
252. HArai
@239:


Also, I think the real lesson here isn't that secrets can be damaging to your goals, but that lack of character definitely is. I think the real mistake Siuan and Elayne made was in overestimating Gawyn. He should have had enough trust and faith in them to let them do what they think is right. I don't think he ever once asked if he could help, or really tried to understand and help.


Help with what? "Doing penance on a farm"?
No one ever admitted they were doing anything.

How's this for a quote:
"Light, Nynaeve, Galad and I are not villains. All we want to do is help. We would do it anyway, but Mother commanded it, so there's not chance of you talking us out of it." Of course the response is to chase them out of the room.

Trying to understand?
"If you learn anything, please tell me. Please? I will beg on my knees, Min."

Trust and faith in Siuan? The person who apparently can't even deal honestly with Morgase let alone Gawyn? What reason has he been given to trust?

Trust and faith in Elayne? The girl who tags along with Nynaeve and Egwene to have an adventure and make Gaywn envious when even Nynaeve points out if she disappears from the Tower it could cause a war? Well, she is his sister. It's a lot easier to have faith someone knows what they're doing if they'll admit they're actually doing something though. If Gawyn lacks character for not trusting Elayne, the same holds for Elayne for not trusting Gawyn surely?


If you look at chapter 17, the entire section in the Tower is either Galad or Gawyn begging to understand what is going on or Min trying to convince Siuan to tell them. The initial reason Galad started talking to the Whitecloaks? How does this sound?

"Not knowing is eating Galad up, too. Listening to Whitecloaks. If anything happens to our sister, or to Egwene..."

Min even Sees indications of terrible things happening whenever Gawyn asks!

Siuan and Elayne don't overestimate Gawyn. They don't consider him or Galad at all! Ooops.

I've pointed out before, I think Gawyn should have let the Tower turn on itself. But I know Elayne wasn't there. It occurs to me Gawyn didn't even know that.

I don't claim Gawyn is some paragon, he's a hot-headed emotional youngster like oh... everyone else his age in the entire series :) I do question the ideas that it was impossible to let him have some idea what was going on, that he should have happily let Siuan and Elayne give him the mushroom treatment and that making poor decisions on poor data makes him a special idiot compared to everyone else.


@242: Hmm. We know a quorum of the Hall decreed Siuan should be deposed and punished. We know Gawyn's intention is to find out where the hell his sister is. Is student in the Tower a status with a position in Tower law? Don't know. Probably not. Does Tower law say only Warders or Tower guards can legally oppose a jailbreak? Don't know, doubt it. Did Gawyn take it upon himself to act? Looks that way. Is that legal if a Hall quorum says it is? Probably. We know vigilantes aren't lawful in _our_ legal systems. Do we know if the concept is even there in _theirs_? Don't think so.
Antoni Ivanov
253. tonka
Meh, I am curious to see RJ's notes about Gawyn/Egwene 's love. It will be interesting. Obviously how exactly they fall in love is not described in the books.
Hugh Arai
254. HArai
@232,@248,@249,@250:

I suppose I'm one of the posters that seems really worked up about this, and I suppose I am in a way. It's not that I care specifically about Gawyn though. I just really enjoy discussion about books I enjoy and I'm just sitting here grinning about having found a group of people that will discuss the WoT with me. None of my friends will read the series so I love the chance to read Leigh's take on things. And... I just like to debate. You may have noticed :) Thanks for indulging me!
Antoni Ivanov
255. tonka
And I decided to go back and read a few of the passages that featured Gawyn(and Galad) and the girls.And how I hated what the girls' attitude toward the boys was. It seems that these three girls think that men are good for nothing.I think that's changed a bit in the later books (they grow up after all). Especially Egwene, her attitude toward Talmanes, and even Mat, and Gareth Bryne speaks that way for me.
Sacha G
256. Fortune_Prick_Me
Odigity: Yes this is an A++++++ thread !

In keeping with my tradition of posts breaking the 4th wall, I would also extrapolate this is how discussions late in the 2nd Age may have occurred.

From the BWBOBA and other sources we know the 2nd Age was a time of peace, reason and consensus. Then Mierin and her research team went looking for something better... BOOM goes the Sharom! Strangely enough things start to go widdershins and people develop personality disorders and emotional traits that lead to violence, abuse and general mayhem. As we all know this led to the War(the re-discovery of violence and the failure of order)~the Breaking.

Now in the 3rd Age, the DO is touching the world again. Rational behaviour is subject to this touch, as seen previously in a past age. The DO's arsenal not only includes such crude weapons as Trollocs, Myrdaal and the Chosen, but also includes self-doubt, fear and self loathing. I count Joachim Charidin, Ingtar, Alviarin among those who acknowledge their "dark side" and Gawyn, Couladin, Sevanna, Aram, and Elaida among those who are victims of this sinister influence.

I can imagine various forums debating when Mar Ruois swore to the Shadow during the 2nd Age. With hindsight it seems obvious they sided with the DO. At the time, however, did their choice seem like a legitimate option?

RJ is a consumate world-builder, who nonetheless managed to include some (not-so-subtle) backdoors to bend his own rules. Taveren for one, of course. Secondly, the Dark One touching the world. This allows the author to break all rules of logical behaviour within the context of the narrative.

I've posted before on how much I think House Trakand are Single-Cell Organisms incapable of higher brain function... As a reader I am willing to see Gawyn as a pawn to fate. As some one who is immersed in the books, Gawyn is as blindingly dumb as TH White makes him out to be in The Once and Future King. Heroic, yet blindingly dumb.
Ofer Nave
257. odigity
Is it too late to jump on the Dr. Horrible band-wagon?

For the record, I did catch the previous reference a few weeks ago (I think it quoted the line "the thoroughbred of sin?"), just didn't respond to it. And now it's too late. Woa is me. I just galloped past it. Is there still time to hop in the saddle? Neigh. I should have grabbed the reins when I could. Now my regret is unbridled.

Horsey.
Captain Hammer
258. Randalator
Leigh does the re-read
we discuss with eloquence
RJ would be proud



Ha...Ha...Haaaaaa...HAIKU!
...stupid cold...! *sniffle*
Sharyn Blum
259. rynners
Point the first: R.Fife, thanks for the vid links (and no Rickroll). They were hysterical and you stole the show. "I like battles!" Ha!

Point the second: I also caught the Bad Horse reference a while back, but, being mostly a lurker, didn't post about it. Still, a belated "well-played".

Point the third: Nice analysis going on here about the Gawyn situation and the legal/legitimate nature of the coup, also regarding theories surrounding Alric's death. I actually might have chimed in on a number of points, but, naturally, they were largely covered by the time I arrived, late as usual. Good job all, not least for keeping largely cool heads about some hot button issues. I really appreciate the lack of serious trolling around here, which is why it's one of the few commentable things I'll read in their entirety.

Point the fourth (and final): Nice haiku, all. I've got a weakness for them myself, as my friends can attest. Just be careful, or you'll find that all your thoughts start coming out in 5/7/5. My best friend and I once texted in naught but haiku for a solid month. Oy.

Forkroot is minty.
Let's have ourselves a cuppa.
Awww! Captured again?!
T C
260. Freelancer
RobMRobM@193

There's a thing about haiku, it has just a couple of rules. Three lines, seventeen on. The meaning of on in Japanese is not precisely the same as syllable in English since it refers as much to the character(s) as the phonetics, but it's as close as we can get given the different forms of writing. So most commonly, an English haiku has three lines totally seventeen syllables. Leigh squashed two syllables into one to make one of hers fit right, but it's her southern accent on the block, so ok.

One other not-quite-rule, that many Japanese writers insist on, is a 5-7-5 pattern to the on. I tried to remain faithful to that in my corny attempts. Had I, perhaps, been more concerned with content than structure they would have had more value. But with haiku, the content is invalid if the structure isn't obeyed.

Now isn't that much more interesting than a grunch of amateur lawyers, psychologists, relationship counselors, and general know-it-alls analyzing and debating the life out of fictional events that never will deserve that much attention?

Uh, that of course is in reference to Randy, Kara, Paula and Simon's summation of last week's best performance. Not talking about anybody here, ok. So put those pitchforks right back down.
Sparrowhawk
261. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
tonka @255
The girls' horrible treatment of boys is an unfortunate side-effect of their matriarchal upbringing. Each of the girls come from a background where (to their narrow perspective) women are top dogs(read bitches). Elayne is daughter heir, while Nynaeve is a Wisdom and Egwene her apprentice. Their limited experience has taught them that the best way to deal with men is to lord it over them.
They already had a tendency to do this before, but the problem is exacerbated by studying in the Tower. The place where it is taught that, aside from being no good, men broke the world. They don't say it in so many words, but the mentality is clearly present.
T C
262. Freelancer
sps49@195

The vileness, as refered to by Cadsuane, had two disparate components. One seen clearly in New Spring, where the Black Ajah was killing males who "might" have been potential channelers, hoping to get the Dragon Reborn. Another was the spree of the Red Ajah who were hunting down and gentling men without bringing them to the Tower (ala Owyn, Thom's nephew), a clear violation of their law.

You equate stilling and gentling, but you aren't a character in the story, and the Aes Sedai most certainly do NOT equate the two. Not the least of proofs of this being the two different names for the severing, depending on the gender of the severee. One is viewed, by them, as a mercy and necessary, while the other is viewed as the penultimate punishment that may be exacted against a sister. Many think it harsher than an execution. Learning that a sister has died doesn't make them lose their lunch, but that someone was stilled turns their bones to jell-o.

Therefore, what was done to Siuan and Leane should outrage everyone who learns that it was done without the process Tower law requires.

Having a bad period in the past doesn't quite equal a tradition. These were my only objections.

Wetlandernw@207

You go! Nice throw-down there. And thank you for side-stepping "serious theology" here, for two reasons. Out of scope for the forum is one. I'd be hard pressed (read unable) to avoid diving in and making a pile of enemies, is the other. The first is the one that really matters. ;-)

Fiddler@209

Sorry, I completely missed any point you were aiming at in that post. Were you correcting me, or educating me? I already knew quite well that we were discussing Willam III (although he was also referred to as William II of Scotland). The principality you refer to as the "countship of Orange" is indeed located in southern France today, but was not French subject land during the time the Dutch originally claimed its title. It was a Roman-Catholic fiefdom in Burgundy which was annexed by Louis XIV, during the time that William III held its title.

Wolfmage@93, 97, 103, 105, 112, 116, 117, 121, 155, 219, 227, 242, 251

Thank you. I had previously begun to worry that I might be annoying some of the kind folks here with long-winded, in-depth analyses of story events and theories. You plunge my concerns, as well as the verbosity of my posts, under the shadow of your gargantuan efforts. I usually attempt to confine my analyses to known and knowable components of the story, and not conflate extra-relevant concepts such as modern legal or governmental theory with those of the fictional setting.
Sparrowhawk
263. birgit
He already had in place a militia, the younglings, loyal to him, that was the difference in the battle.

I don't think the Younglings existed as an organized force before the coup. They were just the warder students, who organized under Gawyn during the coup and found a name for their group.

keep anyone from leaving that the Black or a forsaken wants at hand. Min's arrest warrant comes to mind.

That was Elaida's doing. She recognized Elmindreda and knew that Siuan was always talking to her, but not why.

Since Elaida believes that her Foretelling refers to the present royal line it is stupid of her to try to kill Gawyn. He might be the one the Foretelling was about.
Michael Catapano
264. hoping
wolfmage
How do you feel about spanking?
(should get us to 300)

subwoofer
I note the new avatar
Are you the previous sub or a new sub re-born into this post?
Kurt Lorey
265. Shimrod
Isn't there also some rule about haiku that the season has to be alluded to somehow?

As to Tower Law, there seems to be enough large loopholes to fly a sho-wing through. In fact, it was probably intended to be that way.

As for the characters, I would posit that RJ tried to make them as recognizable (in their behavior) as he could so readers could relate to them easier.
In that, I believe that he was a resounding success (as can be seen with all the passionate debate about various actions).

Just a little aside. People often best recognize traits and behaviors in others that they themselves are most familiar with, usually because they themselves behave in the same or a similar fashion. Just sayin'.

And who said salsa?!? Bring it on!
Captain Hammer
266. Randalator
birgit @263

Since Elaida believes that her Foretelling refers to the present royal line it is stupid of her to try to kill Gawyn. He might be the one the Foretelling was about.

It's the women who uphold the royal line of Andor. Elaida being Elaida she most likely interprets her viewing as only concerning women. So she not only targets the wrong family but without hesitation dismisses roughly one half of the possible candidates which just adds a whole nother level of stupid (and possibly headdesk).

Clueless Elaida
interprets wrong, makes readers
headdesk like crazy
T C
267. Freelancer
Tiny High Lady
Miniature bundle of Bad
Anath's willful charge

Braided yellow locks
Archer once bound to the Horn
Ripped out untimely

Hornsounder, Trickster
Too many general thoughts
Gambler trimmed in pink

Excessive debate
Pseudo-intellectual
Dead Bela-flogging
craig thrift
268. gagecreedlives
birgit @263

"Since Elaida believes that her Foretelling refers to the present royal line it is stupid of her to try to kill Gawyn. He might be the one the Foretelling was about"

Stupid as it may be (and it is Elaida after all) by the end of LoC she wants him and the younglings dead. I think it was Katerine who was put in charge of this.
Kurt Lorey
269. Shimrod
Freelancer writes much
R.Fife does not. Still, I see
both as quite funny
T C
270. Freelancer
Shimrod@262

In purest Japanese haiku it is considered best form to include a cutting, or breaking word at the end of one of the lines (Kiregi), and a word that suggests a seasonal reference within the poem (Kigo). It is also preferred that two distinct thoughts be presented in the three lines, such that one line belongs alone, and the other two linked, while not grammatically dependent upon each other to form a sentence. Extremely difficult to comply with in English, both from a structural and phonetic standpoint.

HArai@252

Bingo. Very well done.

@256

Pffft. See 252 for a post of useful thoughts. Also refer to the final entry of my previous post for an analysis of your...analysis?

odigity@257

odigity puns
ponies up amusing post
then hoofs on his way

Shimrod@269

Cute.
Kurt Lorey
271. Shimrod
@270 Freelancer.

You are really pretty good at this haiku stuff. :) Your last one made me lol.
T C
272. Freelancer
Very kind of you to say so. You have Leigh to thank. After reading her intro to this post, I did about an hour of study on the subject, as haiku had only ever held a passing interest for me. What you've read in these comments include my only attempts at the form.

It's the strict structural component that suits me. I'm just that much of a number geek.
John Massey
273. subwoofer
@Freelancer
Wolfmage@93, 97, 103, 105, 112, 116, 117, 121, 155, 219, 227, 242, 251

Thank you. I had previously begun to worry that I might be annoying some of the kind folks here with long-winded, in-depth analyses of story events and theories. You plunge my concerns, as well as the verbosity of my posts, under the shadow of your gargantuan efforts. I usually attempt to confine my analyses to known and knowable components of the story, and not conflate extra-relevant concepts such as modern legal or governmental theory with those of the fictional setting.

Good times, and true. May cripple the server yet, just out of sheer volume of type. Was going to um... poke gentle fun at you for your attempts at Dostoevsky-esque posts but glad to see the self reflection. And you are rivaling me for frequency.

@Tonka- there is a reason we refer to them as ENEMA- still finding it appropriate- well done.

@249- hop aboard. A horse is a horse

@Hoping- I'm no Lord.... just me with a more...fitting... face on this blog.

@Randalator- Gesundheit.
Sparrowhawk
274. alreadymadwhenSiuanwasstilled
Re: the legality of Siuan's removal and stilling
None of it was illegal per se. Elaida made sure that the forms were observed. The observance was superficial though. In modern parlance Siuan was railroaded out of office.
T C
275. Freelancer
Sub@273

Hmm. I'll admit to being confused. Are you saying my comments have an existentialist air, or do you mean a poorly veiled disgust toward nihilist/socialist groupthink? Either could be named Dostoevsky-esque, but I doubt either could rightly be attributed to me.

Oh, you mean overly verbose and unnecessarily detailed. I get it.
Lannis .
276. Lannis
rynners @ 259: re: "lack of seriousness trolling around..." BAHAhahaha! Need some more popcorn? Gagecreed was nice enough to share with me, I'm more than happy to pay it forward. ;)

Oh, Bela, that poor cheesy horse...

An aside: we discovered the other day that Kraft Dinner--mac and cheese for those unfamiliar with Canadaspeak--sticks to cats nicely. The trick isn't in getting it on, but more in getting it off.

As per the actual discussion... re: the comment about the "lawful Amyrlin" (was it you, Wetlander, who mentioned it?) I think part of it is a case of "if you've got the Tower, you must be in the right." I believe some of the Salidar Sisters are worried about this, as having control of Tar Valon will give the outward appearance of being in the right, especially when you those you're trying to impress are sitting on thrones themselves... You just don't have the pull with other countries when you're sitting in a dusty village in the middle of nowhere.

Freelancer @ 275: Oh, you mean overly verbose and unnecessarily detailed. I get it.

BAHAHAhahaha!

Oh, and R.Fife... thanks for the YouTube notice. :)
John Massey
277. subwoofer
@Free-
Oh, you mean overly verbose and unnecessarily detailed. I get it.
Touché.
@Lannis- reminds me of that old saw- possession is 9/10ths of the law.
-please, no lawyer speak- just a casual comment-
Kevin Morgan
278. DrMorganstien
@ My Horrible friends

Glad to see I wasn't just talking at a brick wall. I also generally suffer from the lurker mentality, so no problem if anyone fails to respond, now I know I can make oddly obscure references whenever I want. Also, that may be bad news for everyone but me.

My life at the moment makes it so every few days I get to be very closely attentive to the re-read and then for a week or two I barely have enough time to just get through our Fearless Leader's excellent blog.
Sparrowhawk
279. toryx
Wolfman @219 (and so many people and comments):

I'm going to make a final comment on the whole Gawyn's decision making business.

A. Given that Gawyn has been raised in a monarchy, by a woman who seems to think it's fine to have her lover jailed and possibly executed for running off to see to a personal affair, I'd say that comparing Gawyn's legal perspectives against a 21st century viewpoint couldn't work. His experience is far from any 20th and 21st century governing or moral systems.

B. I didn't mean to say that Elaida was running everything past Gawyn. Given her feelings on men, I doubt she'd spoken with him at all. I'm just arguing that she had the evidence she needed and given that she had enough support from the Hall to overthrow Siuan with a (albeit small) majority it would be enough for Gawyn to be persuaded, given his own dealings with the less than truthful Amyrlin Seat. Obviously, it's anyone's perogative to disagree.

C. Finally, on my first read of TSR, I was livid with Gawyn and thought he was a flaming idiot. It's only on re-reads and especially my most recent one a few weeks ago that I changed my perspective and started sympathizing with him a little. I still think he made bad choices, particularly when it came to killing Hammar.

But, given a lot more thought into Gawyn's experiences with the Amyrlin, Elayne's refusal to tell him or Galad anything, and the arguments in this thread, my sympathies have swung considerably more toward Gawyn. In fact, I'm more on his side than I was when I first posted on this thread way back @ #5. Which is what makes the whole discussion fun in the first place. I'm a little sorry that my arguments weren't more persuasive for some, but so it goes.

Now I eagerly look forward to the next post later today.
John Fitzingo
280. Xandar01
Just to throw a little brush on the fire, you know Gawyn could have been defending himself when he killed Hammar. Maybe he took his group of Younglings to challenge the "bad" Warders hoping they would see reason. They didn't. Battle ensues and at that point it is kill your teachers or be killed by them. In a massive fight amongst blademasters, I am sure the objective is to kill your opponent as quick as possible so you can move on to the next one.
Roger Powell
281. forkroot
Xandar01@280

Indeed, RJ tantalizes us by making the "massive fight amongst blademasters" off screen. I like your phrasing, though perhaps it's not 100% accurate.

We don't even know for sure that Hammar was a blademaster. What we do know is that virtually all of the warders are highly skilled fighters. Having that many deadly fighters in combat at once would surely have been a fierce, blood-soaked scene.

Add in the likelihood of close quarters (since we can presume that most of the fighting occurred inside the tower) and the real possibility that former friends were fighting to the death and the tension would have been unreal.

As for Hammar - I have no evidence to support this but I could imagine his emotion as he fought one of his prized pupils, likely one that he had felt some "fatherly pride" in. Could that have slowed his hand just enough? We'll never know of course.
Kurt Lorey
282. Shimrod
How come my man Coulin isn't getting the same amount of love as Hammar?
Captain Hammer
283. Randalator
toryx @279

Given that Gawyn has been raised in a monarchy, by a woman who seems to think it's fine to have her lover jailed and possibly executed for running off to see to a personal affair, I'd say that comparing Gawyn's legal perspectives against a 21st century viewpoint couldn't work.

The seeing to family business was not what almost cost Thom his head. Morgase was merely displeased with him running off without a heads up and meddling in Aes Sedai affairs (TEotW, ch. 35) and wanted him arrested for that (she was his employer after all and medieval monarchies aren't exactely big with disciplinary warnings).

When he finally returned she would surely have rescinded the arrest order, but for once instead of softly turning her anger aside he had met her harsh word for harsh word, saying things she could never forgive. Her ears still burned to remember being called a spoiled child and a puppet of Tar Valon. He had actually shaken her, his queen!
(TFoH, ch. 19)

You try calling the Queen of England a spoiled child and a puppet of whatever among other things, shake her around some for good measure and see what it get's you. You wouldn't be too far away from loosing some height yourself...
Chris Maurer
284. grayfox
I'm just catching up again, but Wolfmage, I'm not sure including "BA involvement" really adds weight your argument helps with the legitimacy of the vote.

There are black sisters in the Hall (both Halls for that matter), so likely every vote (both Tower and Salidar) has been influenced by the BA.
Sparrowhawk
285. toryx
Randalator @283

I stand corrected.

Even in the greater context of Thom's offenses, however, it does illustrate that Gawyn comes from an environment where far smaller deeds produce far harsher reactions than those most of us face in the 21st century. He can't be expected to react in a situation such as the breaking of the Tower in a way that fits our modern sensibilities.
Sparrowhawk
286. alreadymadwhentheTowerwasbroken
Shimrod @282
That's because he was never shown teaching wannabes the sword. Unlike Hammar who encouraged Mat to kick Gawyn and Galad's asses. Even offered to cover the bet for him. My kind of guy.
Galen Brinn
287. GatheringStorm
At this point in the game, I'm glad I was puking my guts up yesterday instead of posting here: The back-and-forth has made interesting theory and reading but after the Perrin-as-Emu (pun intended) series from last week I just don't wanna play this week.
Sparrowhawk
288. wsean
Wolfmage @219

Ockham's Razor is the principle that the explanation requiring the fewest actors or fewest assumptions is the one you should select, all other things being equal, no?

Maybe it's not the right term for this situation. But my point was simply that from Gawyn's perspective, it is reasonable to assume that Rand killed Morgase. It is common knowledge that Rand attacked the palace at Caemlyn, and it is common (incorrect) knowledge that Morgase is dead. It is likely also common knowledge that Rand killed the rulers of Tear and Illian (can't remember the timing on the latter).

Rand has a prior history of regicide and is the obvious suspect, with both motive and ability. Gawyn doesn't have to listen to rumors that Rand killed Morgase, he can easily draw that conclusion himself.

I originally brought up OR because I was thinking that the true explanation of what happened would be rejected under that principle. Morgase's lover was secretly one of the Forsaken, he slowly took over Andor, Morgase fled the palace, and Rand attacked because he thought Morgase was dead and was angry? Oh, and he happened to kill that Forsaken in such a way that there was no body? Puh-lease. ;)
sandi vogel
289. sinfulcashew
Salsa?
Dance or chip dip?

I finally remembered the whole Easter poem.

"I am empty.
I have no feelings,
no emotion,
nothing."

My own high-koo!

I am looking forward to todays entry.

Stilling and Kitchen chores for Elaida, if they don't take her head.
Jason Deshaies
290. darxbane
The Gawyn discussions are great, and I can see evidence to both sides. I personnally give Gawyn the benefit of the doubt. Hammar may have been his teacher, but if Gawyn decided that Elaida was right to depose Siuan, then he defended the Tower, just like his training would dictate. Would you have preferred he didn't defend himself when attacked? We have the benefit of hindsight and also evidence unavailable to him. In the heat of the moment, he actually chose to obey his training and defend the Tower and the Office of the Amyrlin, not any individual.

Asmodean - Ugh, RJ did a good job of making a horrible person appear likeable, didn't he? A man who had his own mother severed and then gave her to Myrrdraahl; what a sweetheart. He would maim or kill anyone who appeared to be a threat to his goal of ultimate artiste, and would do anything for eternal life. He is as nuts as the others, and his reasons are even more superficial.
Galen Brinn
291. GatheringStorm
wsean @ 288,

Rand actually hasn't killed any of the ruling populace, that I can recall, so I'm not sure that "a prior history of regicide" can be used at this point in the re-read (with regards to Gawyn believing stupid rumors).

The closest exception might be Colavere (even though her corronation was contrived), but she hung herself rather than be exiled as a commoner.

None of the Tairen Highlords have died directly by his hand (again, that I can recall). I know that he threatened to hang a couple if he didn't get a treaty with Mayene that he was looking for but I don't remember any follow through.

The King of Cairhien (Galdrian Riatin) was assassinated by Thom in Book 2.

Mattin Steppaneos, the King of Illian, was missing(kidnapped by Elaida) and was noted by other, third-party people well before Rand invaded the city in order to kill Sammael. There are other people who claim that Rand did kill Steppaneos but again, it was noted by others that Steppaneos had disappeared well before accusations of his murder-by-Rand flew around.

Two of these take place well after Rand allegedly killed Morgase and again, Galdrian died in Book 2, well before Rand declared himself and there was never a connection made between his death and Rand.

Any mistakes in memory with regards to nobles' deaths, I hereby attribute to the case of food poisoning I had yesterday.
Sparrowhawk
292. jlyman
I am going to put forth my theory on Gawyn and the Tower coup. I believe that it was a bubble of evil that affected the entire White Tower and everyone in it.

Either that or Rand will wake up just in time for Bel Tine and wonder about the strange dream he had.

:-D
Sydo Zandstra
293. Fiddler
Freelancer@262:

Sorry, I meant to expand on what you stated, not educate or correct. Guess I failed. :-s


@Fain sowing seeds with Elaida and Niall:

I always had the impression that Fain might have touched Masema as well. That guy also seems to go from righteous to bad to worse.

Could have been Masema is doing all this on his own too though. And they were both in Fal Dara. We did see to other guards showing influence, but I couldn't find an onscreen scene where Fain and Masema were in the same room. I had to rely on the TGH reread parts by Leigh though.
John Massey
294. subwoofer
@Sinful289- nope- I suggest stilling and marrying her off to R.Fife- could RicRoll the starch out of her.
- salsa the dip. hard to dance with nachos.
Sparrowhawk
295. douglasm
GatheringStorm@291
I think he was referring to Be'lal and Sammael. It is probably not common knowledge that either of them was actually a Forsaken, much less that both were. Rand has certainly not been reticent about announcing Rahvin's identity, yet even that one has apparently not sent rumors to Gawyn's ears yet.
Sparrowhawk
296. wsean
GS @291

Yeah, I was referring to the deaths of Bel'al and Sammael, who effectively ruled Tear and Illian.

Although thinking about it, neither are technically regicide (I completely forgot Steppaneos existed, whoops!). Ah well. I think the point still holds up. Rand is known to have killed those in power in the countries he has taken over. Though again, the Illian attack may have happened after Gawyn had already decided Rand had killed Morgase; I can't remember.
Tess Laird
298. thewindrose
On Elaida - from the infamous part 10 of TSR:

696. Smatt
VIEW ALL BY • Wednesday April 22, 2009 02:26pm EDT
Bookmark
@684 if you're a Faile lover how about a week trapped in a sweat tent with Elaida.....

Yes, that is a naked and sweaty Elaida.

Enjoy.



697. R.Fife
VIEW ALL BY • Wednesday April 22, 2009 02:27pm EDT • amended on Wednesday April 22, 2009 02:28pm EDT
Bookmark
@694: "Read And Find Out" It was RJ's favorite way to answer a question he did not want to answer, like "Who killed Asmo?"

Naked/Sweaty Elaida would be terrifying. Thus why I am still in my cuendillar bunker.

So #289 Sinful... Elaida has plenty of punishment coming up(she does hate men...)
Galen Brinn
299. GatheringStorm
Was forgetting about Be'lal. But he is the only "ruler" who's death can laid at Rand's feet prior to Morgase's apparent death.

Was there ever a big deal made about High Lord Samon's (aka Be'lal) death? I don't remember all the screaming, fussing, rumors and accusations of murder like with Morgase, Colavere and Mattin Steppaneos.

The attack on Illian was in Book 7, A Crown of Swords. Gawyn had already heard about Morgase in Book 6 Lord of Chaos while travelling to Cairhien, prior to the TAS kidnapping Rand.
Joseph Blaidd
300. SteelBlaidd
Alreadymad @261
This is one of the wonderful examples of how Jordon turns standard gender relations o its head, by giving us a world where men rather than women are the ones treated as if their decisions don't count.

Edit and that makes 300 :-D
Ofer Nave
301. odigity
subwoofer@297: Post 18 is here

So link it. Link it good.
Sparrowhawk
302. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
There is Occam's Razor and there is oversimplification.
By Occam's Razor the correct conclusion would be that all these events are related to the general chaos heralded by the appearance of the Dragon Reborn.
Oversimplification(and faulty, not to mention stupid logic) is that the Dragon Reborn killed them all.
Ofer Nave
303. odigity
In Wolfmage's defense, he's right about Occam's Razor having an original, specific, formal meaning within the philosophy of science.

In wsean's defense, the term has since moved into the layman's parlance, mutating into a similar but less formal meaning. I blame Contact.

Anyone remember what the original meaning of the term 'jealous' was?
T C
304. Freelancer
Fiddler@293

No, my mistake, not yours. Read into your post beyond your intent. Shame on me.

jlyman@292

Don't you dare go there. No Dallas cop-outs for RJ. Just...no.

GatheringStorm@299

Moiraine balefired Be'lal, not Rand. On this issue, nobody is claiming that Rand actually killed a national ruler, but that there are many prevalent rumors to that affect. So many, that it would be hard to disbelieve them all. Now Gawyn gets a new rumor that he's done it again, but to Morgase. I can see how he'd accept it as more than rumor. I also understand the intent of trying to apply Occam to that argument, but with some details and explanations left out, it is confusing. I would rather be excessively verbose, boring, but clearly understood, than be terse and pithy, and have my meaning mistaken.
Sparrowhawk
305. toddywatts
@252

Thank you for pointing out what a LIAR he is.

Oh, fine, I stand corrected, but I think my argument still stands. If they aren't doing anything, then they are obviously in training to be Aes Sedai and he should just let them get on with it.
Sparrowhawk
306. Wolfmage
@273. subwoofer
“Thank you. I had previously begun to worry that I might be annoying some of the kind folks here with long-winded, in-depth analyses of story events and theories. You plunge my concerns, as well as the verbosity of my posts, under the shadow of your gargantuan efforts.”
Ha. I’ll take that as a compliment, I think, prolix jibes. :D

“I'd say that comparing Gawyn's legal perspectives against a 21st century viewpoint couldn't work.”

I don’t think you need any modern contrivance to see the paucity of judgement exercised by Gawyn through-out. It can help with the forensic aspect of sorting out complicated, multivariate issues in the reader's mind, but is ultimately unnecessary to finding his actions wanting.

“C. Finally, on my first read of TSR, I was livid with Gawyn and thought he was a flaming idiot. It's only on re-reads and especially my most recent one a few weeks ago that I changed my perspective and started sympathizing with him a little. I still think he made bad choices, particularly when it came to killing Hammar.”

See, I was the reverse of that. On my first series of read-throughs, I was actually quite fixated on the shabby treatment given to Gawyn in his attempt to be involved because the initial affection I had for him as a worthwhile and decent character, from his early introduction in tEotW, still competed successful in my impressions, thus anchoring my sympathies. But then what happened was that this wore off as a excuse, and after taking in the whole series over time, I began to care less and less about his subjective angst which are comparatively minor compared to his actions, and I began to see a consistency of foolishness which unmoored those sympathies.


grayfox @284.
“ I'm just catching up again, but Wolfmage, I'm not sure including "BA involvement" really adds weight your argument helps with the legitimacy of the vote.

There are black sisters in the Hall (both Halls for that matter), so likely every vote (both Tower and Salidar) has been influenced by the BA.”

That's true, but the argument isn’t that any one single BA represented in any vote undermines the whole process; I'm talking about a much stronger role than that. I’m talking about scenarios where BA participation was a necessity in the outcome in terms of voting and behind-the-scenes politicking which would satisfy a “but for” test in the chain of causation. I don’t remember anything about the ratification of Egwene, or some other crucial votes in Salidar which would be equivalent.

Don’t get me wrong – I think there's still plenty of other fishy stuff in Salidar, starting with Egwene’s recess appointments of Accepted to full Sisterhood, when they haven’t even passed the test for the shawl or taken the oaths, or her usage of personal oaths of fealty.

toryx @285.
“He can't be expected to react in a situation such as the breaking of the Tower in a way that fits our modern sensibilities.”

See, I think that’s a bit of a strawman. I don’t shy away from using modern concepts to discuss these things because it is helpful to draw upon conceptual precision when talking about complex issues. As inhabitants of the modern world - we don't need to hobble our precision if we are careful about employing it. I don't have to embrace Helenistic sensibilities to study the classical period, for example.

We can illuminate the issue of judgement of Gawyn in this way without actually depending on those sensibilities being imported directly into WOT for Gawyn to understand the conversation in the same way. Precision helps us as readers to discuss these matters carefully, but just because we start with a sophisticated framework to sort through things doesn’t mean the underlying guidance for the characters can’t be boiled down to simple prudence and principles which are universal or have immediate analogues in WOT.

“But my point was simply that from Gawyn's perspective, it is reasonable to assume that Rand killed Morgase. It is common knowledge that Rand attacked the palace at Caemlyn, and it is common (incorrect) knowledge that Morgase is dead.”

I don’t think it’s rational for him to accept a rumour as the basis for the certitude he demonstrates, that is so cemented in that it cannot be dissuaded or even paused when confronted with a credible character witness or alibi. Though I admit, Egwene’s efforts were pretty feeble. Compounding this intractability, he actually says he needs proof for a negative – which is logical nonsense.

My point about OR is that it is best limited to scientific discourse not judgements about probity to determine probable guilt. Our Courts don’t apply OR, for example, when looking at evidence – we have evidence law which governs these things and it looks at things like the status of hearsay, tendency, coincidence and character credit (credibility). OR is not relevant except at the margins.
Sparrowhawk
307. brian Holihan
does anyone else have a problem accessing the newest posting? it is past 3am EST and the Wed post has not shown up yet.

while i'd normally consider this an isolated incident, it happens regularly. when i check back within another 24-36 hours, the new post shows up - but the posting time is usually prior to my original checking of the blog.

is this just me/something i'm missing?
T C
308. Freelancer
Wolfmage

Check my comments at 262. Subwoofer@273 was quoting me there. Stated in a more sympathetic manner to your own, your protracted and capricious application of obscure terms of questionable applicability, with the express function of exceeding the comprehension of those whom you intend, not to convince, but confound, fails to inculcate more than a bare verisimilitude of the reason which might effectively subjugate others to your repeated dissertations.

That is to say, trying to impress folks to your viewpoint by expecting to baffle them with irregular and unnecessary verbage, it falls short.

But you are welcome to continue to take it as a compliment, by all means.
Captain Hammer
309. Randalator
brian Holihan @307

No. 18

4th link under "Latest Posts" in the upper left. Everything is as it should be...
Mitchell Swan
310. mcswan
jotto@128

Sorry, but you are incorrect:

One wall opened in a series of arches onto a gray stone balcony, and beyond that was a sky such as he had never seen. Striated clouds in blacks and grays, reds and oranges, streamed by as if storm winds drove them, weaving and interweaving endlessly. No one could ever have seen a sky like that; it could not exist.

The Eye of the World
Chapter 14 The Stag and Lion

--

It made a jumble to which Moiraine seemed to pay no attention at all. Instead she bent down to scratch the orange-and-white cat; it promptly left Master Gill’s ankles for hers.

The Eye of the World
Chapter 41 Old Friends, and New Threats

--

Some of the leaves had already begun to turn, and even the small swathes of orange and yellow and red among the green seemed to Egwene to be exactly the way autumn foliage should look.

The Great Hunt
Chapter 39 Flight From the White Tower
Sparrowhawk
311. Wolfmage
Freelancer @308

Wolfmage

"Stated in a more sympathetic manner to your own, your protracted and capricious application of obscure terms of questionable applicability, with the express function of exceeding the comprehension of those whom you intend, not to convince, but confound, fails to inculcate more than a bare verisimilitude of the reason which might effectively subjugate others to your repeated dissertations."

I'm not sure what you are trying to achieve here. Jibes about overburdened language or prolixity are one thing. Offered in good faith, they can be entirely constructive, and I can certainly take that in my stride, especially coming from someone who adopts easy expression and isn't themselves employing overburdened language to make the point.

I'm also happy to take cues from the overall tone of the site, to ensure that if I am out of synch a bit, at least it isn't entirely inappropriate. I personally didn't think that was the case here after attentively reading every one of Leigh's posts. They struck me containing plenty of unfiltered sophisticated writing, including lots of instances where $10 and $15 words were used in favour of $5 ones. I also read the comments and gauged a similar level of unfiltered expression.

But you're not doing any of either above. You're attempting to be clever - be taking me down a peg with what you must imagine is equivalently prolix expression. This wasn't constructive, however, you were just trying to bully a fellow poster who knows and loves the WOT series over many years and was happy to find a place and discuss the issues in an unfiltered way. You had made your point already but just couldn't let it rest.

"That is to say, trying to impress folks to your viewpoint by expecting to baffle them with irregular and unnecessary verbage, it falls short."

This is what's you might call arguing from revealed preferences. You can't think of any plausible, innocuous reason for someone to converse in a style, or use concepts from law or philosophy with some confidence, which you find obnoxious and alienating, so you ascribe to me a base motive out of sheer caprice.
Mikael Pajunen
312. BByte
C47: Ah, my favorite storyline finally starts in full force. This chapter was as big a shock when I first read it as any in the series. On later re-reads the surprise factor doesn't exist, but it's still an excellent, compact start. And the latter adjective rarely applies to this series. Even this plot is going to get dragged on through 9+ books, ugh.
Sparrowhawk
313. Micheal J.
I've just started re-reading the entire Wheel of Time series. I haven't read the whole series from beginning to end in probably around 8 to 10 years. I'm getting old and my memory fuzzy, so I deal with approximations.
Chapter 47 in The Shadow Rising is one of those chapters that has stuck with me over the years, as it seems to do with a lot of people. I've read this entire comments section and there are so many great points and ideas, many of which I've never even thought of. The events here strike a chord in us, and with good reason.
But, I can't help be more irritated with Gawyn this time through than I ever was years ago. I feel that, even through all the very valid points made about his upbringing and being close to Eladia and what not, his choice was despicable. Not so much in his dislike for Siuan Sanche -- a dislike well within reason -- but that he would turn on the very men -- friends by Gawyn's own mouth -- who trained him. I would think that any cause that would turn you to killing your own friends is not exactly a great cause to get behind. Not that I believe that Gawyn was eager or excited to do it, but the fact that he's the one who killed Hammar just isn't sitting right with me. It makes him a real jerk, honestly.
Ah, but what a good chapter. It's fun to be back into a series that I've long loved but also have long neglected.
A A
314. PhantomIce
@202 drewlovs

I agree. I always thought that the Rand's love affair with the 3 women was meant to counterbalance a repeat of how much crazier LTT became after he lost (read *killed*) Ilyena.

Meaning that desipte RJ's hatred for killing off main characters I actually thought one of the 3 girls (personal preferance: Elayne b/c a) hate her b) similarity of name with Ilyena c) andor throne safe since she's pregnant so useful if she dies during childbirth) would die before TG as the price Rand had to pay for his destiny but recalling what happened to LTT when he lost his girl, the pattern wove backup loves for Rand to make sure he remains (vaguely) sane and tied to the pattern after one of them dies.
Sparrowhawk
315. Mightymouse1107
I'll go even further than some of the rest of the "anti-Gawyn" faction.

Judged by WOT standards of justice, Gawyn should be executed. Period. Rand has ordered executions, and I could be wrong but I believe Perrin and Mat have as well.

*GATHERING STORM SPOILER*

As of Gathering Storm so has Egwene.

*END SPOILER*

In WOT systems of justice, even the light side's system of justice, execution is an acceptable punishment for murder and treason. Gawyn committed at least the first of those by most standards, and there's an argument for the treason part.

So it turns out Gawyn sided with the wrong side, because he disliked Siuan and was better acquainted with Elaida. He was so blinded by his own passions and prejudices that he never stops to wonder why Hammar and a bunch of other warders would be breaking Siuan out, and instead just gathers the younglings and rushes off to slaughter. Now its all falling down around his ears because, SURPRISE!, Elaida's an awful leader and a coup in the middle of the night doesn't sit well. So he picked wrong, even though he may have at least a halfway understandable reason for doing so.

Well, you know what? BOO HOO! All that still doesn't cover the fact that he's a murderer at least, a traitor in at least a couple senses, and probably a little unstable if he's so intent on believing rumors to fuel his anger that he tosses all other reasoning aside.

I don't think it will happen, but... honestly, if the White Tower had a version of Nuremberg later on, Gawyn should be one of those whose head is on a chopping block. "I was just following orders" doesn't cut it.
Sparrowhawk
316. GreenishYellowAjah
@313 Michael J

Are you saying, then, that Union soldiers in the Civil War weren't behind a great cause in defending their country because they fought against friends and even brothers who turned to the Confederate side?
Sparrowhawk
317. Barnabusiii
Haha, sorry for being a non-commenting lurker reader, but I saw fit to mention that the final line of your last haiku made me burst into loud laughter (making the folks around me in the coffee house stare, so thanks.) :)
Scott Peterson
318. scottpeterson
I don't think anyone has said this yet, but...
@Leigh
wow, you called it!
Mesaana = Danelle
Sparrowhawk
319. VandalThor
odigity@303
-jealosy- is coveting what someone else has, that you could have as well if only you would allow your self. Like I'm jealous of my brothers beautiful family why am I doomed to hookers and blow being my only escape.
-envy- is coveting what someone else has that you couldn't get even if you wanted it probably. Like the old man sat on the bench, envy dripping from his nose in the cold november wind as he stared at the young teens walking past arm in arm.
-rhetorical- is the posing of a question whose purpose is to elicit thought instead of an answer.

bclinton@1990's trial
-it-dirty cigar foreplay and oral fellatshing that will tarnish your otherwise exemplary presidency
Terry McNamee
320. macster
@63 CTyler and 67 Tonka: Chapter 50, "Traps", brings up the point (though Leigh elided it in her recap) that Asmodean had been in Arad Doman. (He was "hiding in a hole" until Lanfear found him.) He mentions in TFoH that he had run across a saying in Arad Doman, and that he knew Graendal was there. Aside from this convincing me that it was obvious she was Asmo's killer (because he was the only Forsaken other than Sammael who knew where she was, and she'd been told he turned traitor), there is the fact that one of the biggest and most comprehensive libraries in Randland, the Terhana Library, is in Bandar Eban, the capital of Arad Doman. So even if you don't buy that Asmo being in Arad Doman and knowing Graendal was there proves they'd been allied, I can easily imagine him doing research in the Terhana Library while he was there, and that's how he found out about the Prophecies and a lot of other things which happened while he was sealed in the Bore.
Terry McNamee
321. macster
Another thing: while I'm not going to touch on whether Asmodean was a good person or not, or should be liked or not (for what it's worth, Jordan said that he had genuinely decided to turn back to the Light before he was killed, albeit out of self-preservation, but that has no bearing on whether what he'd done was forgivable), one of the reasons I did like him was what is shown here. That he not only understands Rand's situation (which interestingly enough becomes somewhat his own once he is cut off from the Dark One--doomed to go mad from the taint, or be killed by the Dark One/Forsaken for being a traitor), but sympathizes with it.

This in turn, I think provides another reason why Jordan killed him off, besides the fact he had outlived his usefulness as far as teaching Rand was concerned. Asmodean understood Rand and could provide that willing ear to listen, the one person who would get his plight (being another male channeler) without trying to control him, supplant him (as Taim did and does), or betray him--because his life depended on Rand winning. So he could offer that unique perspective, someone whom Rand could turn to, even if he could never fully trust, whether it came to channeling or his overall role as a savior/destroyer of prophecy.

There's a lot of things that wouldn't have happened or would have happened differently if Asmodean had lived--Taim and the Black Tower come to mind, since even if Asmo didn't know Taim or that he was Dark he could have recognized things he said or did, knowledge he had, and so on, and then there's the whole kidnapping by the Tower delegation. But in the end I think Asmo had to die so that Rand would be left alone, with no one to trust (trust and the lack of it were big themes of LoC after all), no one to understand or sympathize...and this isolation was a big key to the Lews Therin voice and Rand's encroaching madness. Whatever else you think of Asmodean, if he had been there to help stave off Lews Therin and the madness, the story would have been very different. So...he died for his sympathy and loyalty. How sad.

And the fact he gives us that window into viewing the current world through the lens of the Age of Legends, and seeing what all has changed, is indeed fascinating.
Sparrowhawk
322. Divil The Bother
Hmm - a bit worried that the number of comments is heading back towards ridiculous levels - 300+ and again the vast majority involving pointless speculation about what might have happened off-screen to make Gawn act as he did during the Coup. There are plenty of hints, references, foreshadowing, etc in these fantastic books to keep us going surely without inventing stuff even Jordan didn't bother including.

Anyway these Chapters are always shoocking to read and the thing that makes Gawns involvement so hard to take is that it led to a tragedy ie the deaths of good men trying to do the right thing at the hands of youngsters who didn't have the knowledge to know whether or not they were on the right side.

As for Siuan - yes her fate was shocking but remember this woman had no qualms about sending untrained children into a trap set by 13 fully trained Black Ajah Aes Sedai - sent them to certain death basically. Based on that I don't think I have much sympathy for her plight.
William McDaniel
323. willmcd
One tidbit that it seems no one noticed (and I have to confess, I didn't go through all 322 comments with a fine-toothed comb). When Rand and Aviendha are talking Isendre's "softness" (or lack thereof), we see this exchange:

"Soft," Aviendha grunted. "Elayne is not soft. You belong to Elayne; you should not be caressing eyes with this milk-skinned wench." She shook her head fiercely, muttering half to herself. "Our ways shock her. She could not accept them. Why should I care if she can? I want no part of this! It cannot be! If I could, I would take you gai'shain and give you to Elayne!"

"Why should Isendre accept Aiel ways?" (says Rand)

Avi first looks startled, and then scowls. I think my eyes just kind of brushed over this passage before, but it struck me this time that the reason for Avi's startled response is that while Rand thinks they're still talking about Isendre, Avi is talking about Elayne, in the second half of her rant, and sizing up Elayne's willingness to share Rand in an Aiel plural marriage.

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