May 13 2009 2:36pm

The Wheel of Time Re-read: The Shadow Rising, Part 18

Hi, y’all! Welcome back to another Wheel of Time Re-read post! Today we are covering Chapters 49-51. Getting down to the wire here on The Shadow Rising, kids!

I’m glad everyone liked my crappy haikus! Unfortunately I’m on about two hours’ sleep right now so this intro will not be nearly as interesting. Them’s the breaks, eh?

Previous entries can be found here. There are spoilers everywhere, but you should know that by now.

And I got nothing else interesting to say, introductorially. Perhaps you should clink a link and read on, huzzah?

Chapter 49: Cold Rocks Hold

What Happens
Rand looks around, but doesn’t see anything different in the landscape to indicate they have arrived. He asks where it is, and Aviendha looks at him like he’s crazy. Rhuarc tells him he will see, and heads toward a fissure in the rocks ahead. The Jindo follow him, as do the Wise Ones’ group, and the Shaido begin setting up camp. Rand offers a hand up to Aviendha, saying that he needs to be able to hear her if she’s going to keep him from making a mistake. She hesitates, glancing at the Maidens, but then allows him to pull her up, hanging on with a squawk as he heels his horse into a gallop to catch up. Rand is surprised to see Couladin in the group with Rhuarc, Heirn, and Amys, and more puzzled when the man looks at him with amusement as well as contempt. Mat gallops up, and asks what this place is.

Rand told him, and he frowned at the towering rock face of the butte. “You could hold that thing for years, I suppose, with supplies, but it isn’t a patch on the Stone, or the Tora Harad.”

“The Tora what?” Rand said.

Mat rolled his shoulders before answering. “Just something I heard of, once.”

Mat is not pleased to hear that the peddlers are unlikely to be leaving soon, with all the clans coming. The party heads into the fissure, which soon widens into a vast canyon which contains the strangest town Rand’s ever seen; the Aiel with him all break into ululating cries and bang pots and spears to announce their arrival. They make their way to the end of the canyon where a large flat-topped boulder is situated. Amys has run ahead, and when Rand and the others reach the boulder she is standing there with Lian, the roofmistress of Cold Rocks Hold.

The wavering, high-pitched cries dwindled away to nothing as Rhuarc halted before the boulder, a step closer than Heirn and Couladin. “I ask leave enter your hold, roofmistress,” he announced in a loud, carrying tone.

She gives it, adding warmly that Rhuarc will always be welcome. Heirn steps forward and asks leave to come beneath her roof, which she also grants. Then Couladin swaggers forward and asks leave to enter Lian’s hold, at which she frowns, and a buzz of shocked murmurs rise from the surrounding Aiel. Rand asks Aviendha quietly what’s wrong, and she replies in disbelief that Couladin asked permission as a clan chief, and if Lian refuses him for the insult, it will cause trouble with the Shaido. She berates Rand for not listening to her, and tells him that it is Lian’s right to refuse anyone, even He Who Comes With the Dawn, because women here are not powerless like wetlander women. Rand shakes his head, amused, and tells her he’d like her to explain to the Women’s Circle in Emond’s Field one day how powerless they are.

“You have my leave,” Lian began—Couladin smiled, swelling up where he stood—”to step beneath my roof. Water and shade will be found for you.” Soft gasps from hundreds of mouths made quite a loud sound.

Couladin is infuriated, and storms back into the crowd, clutching his forearms. Aviendha explains softly that Lian has welcomed him as she would a beggar, and so insulted him deeply without insulting the Shaido. Then she fists him in the ribs and tells him it’s his turn, and he’d better not dishonor her teaching. Rand dismounts and walks up beside Rhuarc; he bows, even though none of the other men had, and asks leave to come beneath Lian’s roof. Then he hears Aviendha’s breath catch, and realizes he was supposed to say the other thing, but Lian stares at him a moment and then remarks that such modesty is becoming in a man. She curtsies awkwardly to him, in return for his bow.

“The Car’a’carn has leave to enter my hold. For the chief of chiefs, there is ever water and shade at Cold Rocks.”

Couladin stares at Rand with hatred and stalks off; Mat tells Rand he’d better watch his back with that one, but Rand replies that Couladin isn’t the one he needs to worry about.

Moiraine to one side and Lanfear to the other. How could I have more danger than that? It was nearly enough to make him laugh.

Rhuarc puts an arm each around Lian and Amys and tells Rand he met his wife Amys, and now he must meet his wife Lian. Rand’s mouth drops open, and Mat splutters incredulously. Rhuarc frowns and says he thought Aviendha was teaching Rand Aiel ways; Amys comments dryly that likely she’s been teaching him Maiden hand talk or similarly useless things. Rand quickly sticks up for Aviendha, and says he would like her to continue as his teacher, and then wonders why he said that. Aviendha starts to say something, but Amys stares her down, and she shuts her mouth. Lian warmly invites Rand and Mat to come and get food and rest. At her house, Rand and Mat are joined by Lan, Moiraine, Egwene and the other Wise Ones, and Lian is deeply respectful to Moiraine and Egwene; Rand remembers that Lian has not been to Rhuidean and so only knows the general legend that the Aiel had failed the Aes Sedai. He notes that she refuses to accept a guest gift from Moiraine as too great an honor, but did not hesitate to accept his, which tells him something about the relative importance of the Car’a’carn and an Aes Sedai. Moiraine comments that the Three-fold Land will surely see more Aes Sedai now, which does not please the Wise Ones at all. As they eat, Rand watches Lian and Amys, who smile at each other as much as they do at Rhuarc, and catches himself thinking that he couldn’t see Elayne and Min agreeing to such an arrangement, and decides the sun has cooked his brains. Aviendha spends the meal explaining every last thing to him in excruciating detail with clenched teeth. Rand says to her quietly that he doesn’t know what he’s done to her, but if she does not want to teach him he’s sure someone else could be found. Aviendha grits backs that he has done nothing to him, nor ever will, and continues right on with her lecture. Mat looks deeply grateful to not be involved, and Rand thinks maybe a bribe would help. Finally Bair gives Aviendha a look that shuts her up, and Rhuarc tells Rand that two clan chiefs, Jheran of the Shaarad and Bael of the Goshien, have already arrived at Alcair Dal, and Erim of the Chareen is on his way. Rand confirms with Rhuarc that the Shaarad and Goshien have blood feud, and wonders if maybe gathering all the clans together is not a recipe for disaster, after the way the Shaido behaved at Rhuidean; maybe he should go on ahead to Alcair Dal. Melaine and Bair speak up sharply for their respective clans, and declare they are not like the Shaido.

“None of which answers Rand al’Thor’s question,” Rhuarc said. “If you go to Alcair Dal before all of the chiefs arrive, those who have not come yet will lose honor. It is not a good way to announce that you are Car’a’carn, dishonoring men you will call to follow you. The Nakai have furthest to come. A month, and all will be at Alcair Dal.”

Seana puts in that it will be less, as Bruan intends to run the whole way. Rand thinks it is too long, but there was no choice, and ruefully muses that it’s not like the stories where everything goes the way the hero wants it, even with ta’veren influence. He asks Rhuarc how many will resist him.

“I cannot be sure in it,” the clan chief replied around his pipestem. “When you show the Dragons, they will know you. There is no way to imitate the Dragons of Rhuidean.” Had Moiraine’s eyes flickered?

Rhuarc is sure of Bruan and Dhearic of the Reyn, but says the Shaido are certain to make trouble, either from Couladin or from Sevanna, the widow of the previous clan chief. He thinks most of the others will follow, but there is no way to be sure. He asks again if Rand will not consider wearing Aiel clothing, and Rand answers that he will not be a pretend Aiel, and the Dragons on his arms will have to be enough. Moiraine suddenly asks where he intends to “lead the spears to war once more”.

Rand’s fists tightened convulsively, till his knuckles cracked. Trying to be clever with her was dangerous; he should have learned that long since. She remembered every word that she heard, filed it away, sorted and examined until she knew just what it meant.

Mat and Egwene watch him worriedly, but the Aiel do not look perturbed. Rand asks to be excused, and walks out.

First mention of Sevanna AAARRRGGGHHH *throws things*

Ahem! Sorry.

The nuances of Aiel culture are hell to recap (I skipped a lot of it for sanity’s sake) but great fun to read about. This may come off as slightly insulting, but it’s fascinating to me in the same way as reading about ancient Japanese culture was in Shogun. And actually there are more than a few similarities between the two, as I am hardly the first to note: Ji’e’toh is pretty clearly based on both the Bushido code of the samurai era, and the more modern concepts of on and giri (or perhaps it is giri and ninjo; I freely admit that my understanding of Japanese culture is less than stellar). In my opinion it is a credit to Jordan’s worldbuilding abilities that his invented culture gives off such an aura of implied (and actual) complexity that it can be favorably compared with many real ones.

With the benefit of hindsight, it’s clear here that Couladin has already received the counterfeit Dragons on his arms, courtesy of Natael/Asmodean (and wouldn’t I love to have seen how that conversation went), but I am a tad unsure here (because I don’t really remember in detail what happens next, and have not read ahead to confirm) whether Lanfear has any clue that that’s what Asmodean has been up to in the Shaido camp. I think not, based on her behavior in the next chapter, but we’ll see.

On the Aiel polygamy thing: okay, I admit it, I’m curious. Do the sister-wives have sex with each other, or not? Jordan, of course, is very FCC-compliant in his fiction, and so never says one way or the other outright, because that would be Dirty (*rolls eyes*), but it’s a legitimate question. My own theory, based on little more than how I think this ought to be, is that it’s probably a matter of personal preference. Although, I do think I am backed up by my general impression of Aiel mores concerning sexual/romantic relations, which is that the genders of the people involved are a secondary concern, of less importance than insuring the familial stability of beneficial relationships.

*reads last sentence again* Or something similar that makes actual sense. Anyway, I think, therefore, that the sister-wives thing can be either a “friends stick together” thing, or a “friends with benefits” thing, but not necessarily both.

Lian and Amys and Rhuarc, though, are totally having crazy threesome action. Because I Said So.

Chapter 50: Traps

What Happens
Rand heads toward the canyon mouth, wishing that he could trust Moiraine not to hand him to the Tower on a leash. He watches the Aiel going about their daily lives, and notes that most of them watch him with an air of speculation. He reaches the peddlers’ wagons, where Rand is surprised to see that Natael is back from the Shaido camp; Keille is busy bargaining, but pauses to frown at Natael frequently. Rand skirts the wagons and finds the Roof of the Maidens in Cold Rocks. The guards at the door refuse to let him in, scandalized that he would ask, but agree to carry a request in to Adelin. All the other Maidens gather around to watch, grinning, as he goes through the items Adelin has brought him, and picks out an ivory bracelet carved with roses and thorns, which he thinks is fitting for Aviendha. When he tells Adelin who it is for, all the Maidens stop smiling, and Adelin tells him she will take no price for the bracelet.

“Is this wrong?” he asked. How would Aiel see it? “I don’t want to dishonor Aviendha in any way.”

“It will not dishonor her.” She beckoned a gai’shain woman carrying pottery cups and pitcher on a silver tray. Pouring two cups, she handed one to him. “Remember honor,” she said, sipping from his cup.

Uncertain, he copies her, and to his surprise she kisses him on either cheek. Then he has to repeat the ceremony with every Maiden there, which takes quite a while. He finally escapes and finds Aviendha beating carpets outside Lian’s house. When he gives her the bracelet, telling her it is a gift for teaching him, she stares at him expressionlessly, and says that she has never worn a thing that would rattle and give her away before. Rand says, but she can wear it now that she is to be a Wise One. She agrees flatly, and puts on the bracelet. He asks again if it is a dishonor, and explains to her about Adelin and the tea-sipping ceremony. She shudders, and explains they think he is trying to attract her interest, and have approved as if Aviendha were still a Maiden. Rand is dismayed, and starts to say he will set them straight, but she cuts him off furiously and tells him that would dishonor her; they must think as they will now.

With a glance at the bracelet, she added, “You truly know nothing, do you? You know nothing. It is not your fault.” She seemed to be repeating something she had been told, or trying to convince herself. “I am sorry if I ruined your meal, Rand al’Thor. Please go.”

Rand suspects the apology was on orders, but thinks that she sounds sincere, and hopes maybe she will grow more civil to him soon. He enters Lian’s house, where the Wise Ones are talking, and asks Amys if she ordered Aviendha to apologize to him, but Amys says a forced apology is no apology, and would not have done so. Rand tells them that he knows Aviendha is their spy, and Melaine admits that they had thought he might not see beyond a pretty young woman, but they had not reckoned on her tongue, among other things. Rand demands to know why they want her to stay with him then, now that the jig is up, and Amys ripostes, asking why he lets her stay. Rand replies that at least this way he knows who the spy is. Bair says, then everyone is satisfied.

“She will not find out what you want.”

“What we want?” Melaine snapped; her long hair swung as she tossed her head. “The prophecy says ‘a remnant of a remnant shall be saved.’ What we want, Rand al’Thor, Car’a’carn, is to save as many of our people as we can. Whatever your blood, and your face, you have no feeling for us. I will make you know our blood for yours if I have to lay the—”

Amys cuts her off and tells a gai’shain to show Rand to his room. He goes, wondering what Melaine’s last words had meant, and mocking himself for wondering if she had meant a trap. He scandalizes the gai’shain woman by asking for wash water; then she scandalizes him by offering to wash him. He drifts off thinking about traps, and dreams that he is swimming in a pond in the Two Rivers. Min and Elayne jump in with him, landing on either side.

Two strokes would take him to either woman. Away from the other. He could not love both of them. Love? Why had that popped into his head?

“You do not know who you love.”

He turns to see Aviendha on the back, dressed as a Maiden. He invites her in to the water, and is interrupted by a laugh from the other side of the pond. He sees a beautiful naked woman there, and thinks that he knows her. She asks if she should allow him to be unfaithful to her even in his dreams, and he knows that Min, Elayne and Aviendha are gone. She dives in and swims to him, embracing him tightly. She tells him she will make sure he never forgets this; he says slowly that he knows her, and this isn’t right. He tries to pull away, but she holds him fast.

“I ought to mark you.” There was a fierce edge in her voice. “First that milk-hearted Ilyena and now... How many women do you hold in your thoughts?” Suddenly her small white teeth burrowed at his neck.

Bellowing, he hurled her away and slapped a hand to his neck. She had broken the skin; he was bleeding.

“Is this how you amuse yourself when I wonder where you have gone?” a man’s voice said contemptuously. “Why should I hold to anything when you risk our plan this way?”

Suddenly the woman is back on the back, clothed in silver and white, talking to a man-sized blur. She sneers that he is as bad as Moghedien, creeping about like the Spider and hiding. The blur asks why should he associate with her if she cannot control her appetites? If he is to take risks, it should be for more than “pulling strings on a puppet”. Dangerously, she asks what he means, and Rand somehow senses that the blur is unnerved by her anger; then it vanishes, and the woman gives Rand an irritated look and disappears as well. Rand wakes, and feels the tooth marks still on his neck.

Lanfear. He had not dreamed her. And that other; a man. A cold smile crept onto his face. Traps all around. Traps for unwary feet. Have to watch where I step, now. So many traps. Everybody was laying them.

Suddenly he realizes he is not alone in the room, and instantly seizes saidin and leaps to his feet, channeling all the lamps alight and wrapping the intruder in Air. Then he sees it is Aviendha, and releases the flows binding her immediately. She scrambles up, and shakily says she doesn’t think she will ever get used to that from a man. Rand snaps at her that she’d better get used to it, and demands to know why she is here. Aviendha says that the Wise Ones are watching him “from outside”, and then trails off, but Rand abruptly gets it, and realizes they have been spying on his dreams, and asks harshly how long. Aviendha says she was not supposed to tell him, and Seana said something about it being too dangerous tonight, which is why they are taking turns watching the door. He says that still doesn’t answer his question, and Aviendha starts saying something about not being able to protect him without a spear, but then Rand realizes he feels something wrong in the air, and brings up his fire sword. He creeps into the outer room, Aviendha following with bared knife, and finds a Draghkar feeding on a gai’shain. The Draghkar tries to hypnotize him, but Rand, wrapped in the Void, walks up to it and slices its head in two. Aviendha checks the gai’shain and says she is dead, and then throws herself flat as Rand sends a bar of fire over her head, to kill the second Draghkar in the doorway. He tells her to rouse the spears. She obeys, and he goes outside to find Seana dead in the garden. Pandemonium breaks out in the canyon as Trollocs attack; Mat and Rhuarc run up, and Rhuarc hands Rand a shoufa. Rand starts to put it on, and then laughs and says to let them see his face, and runs toward the fighting.

Mat kills another Trolloc and curses Rand for getting him into this again. A Maiden stops beside him and compliments his spear work, calling him “gambler”, and comments that the Trollocs might have forced a way in were it not for the Aes Sedai.

“There weren’t enough for that,” he said without thinking. “They were meant to pull attention here.” So those Draghkar would have a free hand to reach Rand?

“I think you are right,” she said slowly. “Are you a battle leader among the wetlanders?”

He wished he had kept his mouth shut. “I read a book once,” he muttered, turning away. Bloody pieces of other men’s bloody memories. Maybe the peddlers would be ready to leave after this.

He stops by the wagons and find Isendre there. He tells her she’s safe now, making sure to lean on his spear so she would see it, but she turns without a word and goes inside the wagon, slamming the door. Mat stalks off, vowing to go back to bed, and runs into Rand and Aviendha; both are expressionless, and Mat thinks they deserve each other. Moiraine enters the circle of light cast by Rand’s sword and tells him the Draghkar were surely meant for him this time; he replies calmly that he knows.

Moiraine’s lips compressed, and her hands were too still on her skirts; she was not best pleased. “Prophecy is most dangerous when you try to make it happen. Did you not learn that in Tear? The Pattern weaves itself around you, but when you try to weave it, even you cannot hold it. Force the Pattern too tight, and pressure builds. It can explode wildly in every direction. Who can say how long before it settles to focus on you again, or what will happen before it does?”

Rand says dryly that it makes as much sense as any of her explanations, and asks what she wants. She replies that she wants him to confide in her, or does he think he’s learned everything he needs to know after one year away from his village? Rand replies that he will confide in her if she says plainly and clearly that she won’t try to hinder him, and won’t try to use him for the Tower’s ends. She replies that she will do nothing to hinder him fulfilling his destiny, but she will not watch him lay his head on a chopping block. He tells her that’s not good enough, and in any case he wouldn’t confide in her here. He adds that even dreams have ears, and Mat notices that Aviendha hunches a bit. Rhuarc approaches and tells Rand it will likely be Gray Men next, and he wants to put guards around Rand at all times; for some reason, the Maidens have volunteered. Rand agrees, sounding a bit uneasy, and Aviendha hunches even further. Mat asks about the Shaido, and whether it would be better to have them inside in case of another attack, but Rhuarc says he wouldn’t bring a thousand Shaido inside Cold Rocks even if Grassburner were coming, but in any case, the Shaido have already left. Rand asks which way they went, and Rhuarc says north; no doubt Couladin means to meet Sevanna on the way and influence her against Rand.

“I mean to go to Alcair Dal,” Rand said firmly. “Now. I will apologize to any chief who feels dishonored by coming late, but I’ll not let Couladin be there any longer before me than I can manage. He won’t stop at turning Sevanna against me, Rhuarc. I cannot afford to hand him a month for it.”

Rhuarc pauses, and then says maybe he is right. He says they will leave at sunrise, but Rand counters that they must be on their way before first light; there are no customs to cover him. Rhuarc is taken aback, and Rand asks Mat if he is coming.

He certainly did not intend to let the peddlers get away from him, not his way out of the Waste. “Oh, I am right behind you, Rand.” The worst of it was, it felt right saying that. Bloody ta’veren tugging at me! How had Perrin pulled free? Light, I wish I was with him right now.

Mat stalks off to get a little sleep, leaving Rand chuckling behind him.

And the metaphorical-if-not-actual sexual shenanigans continue! Interesting that Rand’s love quadrangle is explicated in a chapter named “Traps”. Coincidence? Okay, probably. But still.

Lanfear’s obligatory Crazy aside, I can’t decide what I think in general about Rand’s Three Women Thing. There is the obvious inclination to think it’s kind of prurient and heh-heh-heh, but then again I will say that Rand’s feelings for all three of them are never portrayed that way. I’m not sure that makes it okay, but it at least makes it easier to swallow.

Someone (I’m sorry that I don’t have the moral fortitude to go find out who) brought up in the comments the very astute observation that “fated to be in love” is not necessarily much more fun a destiny than “fated to die to save the world”, when you really look at it, since from that perspective you’re stuck with the person in question whether you’re actually compatible with them or not. So I suppose it’s a matter of opinion whether Jordan meant the romance between Rand and Min/Elayne/Aviendha to be something that could have believably developed on its own, or if it is prophetically determined for some practical future-event-enabling thing. I guess we’ll find out?

Lanfear and Asmodean: Asmodean is portrayed overall as the weakest of the Forsaken, not necessarily in terms of strength in the Power (though that might be the case too for all I know), but in the sense of being cowardly and unambitious; he just wants to play his guitar harp, maaaan. But I say it takes a certain bravery to stand up to the utter Crazy that is Lanfear, and not only that, but to sneak around behind her back while they’re practically living on top of each other. I mean, yeah, that’s about to backfire on him horribly, but hey. Points for trying, Asmo!

On the Wise Ones: I sympathize with their problem here, that this unknown outsider boy is responsible for the survival or extinction of their entire culture, but nevertheless I find the notion of spying on someone’s dreams to be unethical in the extreme. If I were in Rand’s shoes I would be livid. That is so not cool, y’all.

Also, was Melaine seriously thinking that if she proposed to Rand he would actually accept? Because, you know, no.

Mat: in general I love his progression toward being a Great Battle Leader, but the quote above with the Maiden talking to him has always struck me as a massive clunker of an exchange. One of the few, fortunately, but, yeah. I mean, come on: I ain’t no strategist, but observing there were too few Trollocs to put up a real fight is hardly planning Waterloo; it certainly did not merit that kind of response from the Maiden, if you ask me.

Of course, if the nameless Maiden here is actually future would-be assassin Darkfriend Melindhra, all bets are off. So there’s that.

Moiraine: getting desperate, are we? Nicely done, on Jordan’s part I mean. She is calm and still and all, but you can tell she is about to freak the hell out on Rand at any moment. And I know she can’t lie, but even so, am I the only one that thinks the exploding Pattern quote sounds like bullshit?

Chapter 51: Revelations in Tanchico

What Happens
Egeanin, Elayne, and Nynaeve are trying to eat a traditional Domani meal with eating sticks called sursa, with little success. Egeanin asks Rendra why she is serving the cuisine of Tarabon’s enemy, and Rendra replies it is the fashion, and not a good idea to go against it. Elayne asks if she really thinks there would be riots over what food inns are serving, and Rendra replies that with the mood in the city the way it is, there’s no telling what would set the mob off. Egeanin growls about “no order”, and Rendra laughs and says she remembers what order is; perhaps they will have it again some day. Then she grins and remarks that forks and spoons are under the napkins, and leaves; Nynaeve and Egeanin grin at each other and dive for the utensils, but Elayne beats them both. Elayne has been greatly enjoying Egeanin’s company for the past week, and admires her forthright manner, but wishes they had not been mired up in the inn so often for Egeanin to find; the near constant riots since Amathera’s investiture had kept them inside, and Thom’s promised carriage had been suspiciously slow in arriving. Nynaeve asks Egeanin what questions she has today; Egeanin frowns and begins to bring up the women she knows they are looking for, but is interrupted by Bayle Domon, who strides in to say he has found them, but cuts himself off when he sees Egeanin. He says, “You!”, and to Elayne’s shock Egeanin leaps up and attacks him. Domon throws her down, and Elayne immobilizes them both with Air and demands to know what is going on. Domon growls that Egeanin is Seanchan. Nynaeve and Elayne exchange shocked looks, but Egeanin does not deny it, and Elayne lets them both up.

“Seanchan,” Nynaeve growled. She clutched a fistful of her long braids, then gave her hand an odd stare and let go, but her brows were still furrowed and her eyes hard. “Seanchan! Worming your way into our friendship. I thought you had all gone back where you came from. Why are you here, Egeanin? Was our meeting really an accident? Why did you seek us out? Did you mean to lure us somewhere your filthy sul’dam could lock their leashes around our throats?” Egeanin’s blue eyes widened fractionally. “Oh, yes,” Nynaeve told her sharply. “We know about you Seanchan and your sul’dam and damane. We know more than you. You chain women who channel, but those you use to control them can channel too, Egeanin. For every woman who can channel that you’ve leashed like an animal, you walk by another ten or twenty every day without realizing it.”

Egeanin replies that she knows, to Nynaeve’s surprise; she reasoned it out. She and Domon half-flirtatiously compliment each other on their fighting skills, and Elayne tries to reconcile this new knowledge with the fact that she likes Egeanin. Nynaeve seems to be having no such difficulty, and snarls to Egeanin that she need not think she will collar them. Egeanin replies that she has no such intention, but only wanted to learn from them, and admits that she likes them, much to her own surprise. She explains that she was sent back to find the sul’dam that had been left behind after Falme, and by accident had discovered that the a’dam would hold the one she found, but adds that she let the woman go last night.

“I will pay dearly if that is ever discovered, but after talking with you, I could not...” Grimacing, she shook her head. “That is why I stayed with you after Elayne revealed herself. I knew Bethamin was a sul’dam. To discover the a’dam held her, that she could... I had to know, to understand, about women who could channel.”

She asks what they intend to do with her. Nynaeve hesitates, and changes the subject, asking Domon if he really had found them. Domon doesn’t answer, staring meaningfully at Egeanin, and Elayne says she doesn’t think Egeanin is a Darkfriend, to which Egeanin chimes in angrily that she certainly is not. Domon is doubtful, but tells them that two of the women they described are at the Panarch’s Palace. Nynaeve is skeptical, considering that the Whitecloaks occupy the Palace at the moment, but Domon is certain. Juilin enters, sporting fresh wounds, and asks to speak to Nynaeve alone, but Nynaeve says she supposes he’s found the women at the Palace too, and Juilin shoots Domon a dirty look before confirming that he had seen Jeaine Caide from a distance, who surely had to be the only Domani woman in all of Tarabon at the moment. Domon and Juilin snipe at each other for a moment, ignoring Elayne’s attempts to say they had both helped, and then Thom enters; he is quite disgruntled to learn that he’s been beaten to the punch regarding the Black Ajah’s whereabouts, though Elayne makes it sound like she and Nynaeve had found it out. Nynaeve casually tells Thom and Juilin that Egeanin is Seanchan, and then ignores their protests, making them all sit down to eat while they decide what to do. Thom remarks that the problem is deciding whether Amathera is ally, dupe, or captive of the Black Ajah, and Juilin counters that the real problem is how to reach her whatever her situation is. They discuss the problem through the meal, with Thom and Domon surprisingly supporting Egeanin’s contributions over Nynaeve’s objections. They finally decide they need more information, though Nynaeve has to wrap the men up in Air to convince them it’s okay to leave her and Elayne alone with a Seanchan.

“You keep a taut crew,” Egeanin said as soon as the door closed behind them.

“Be quiet, Seanchan!” Nynaeve folded her arms tightly; she seemed to have given up trying to pull at those braids when she was angry. “Sit down, and—be—quiet!”

They wait, Nynaeve pacing angrily. Thom comes back to report several times, ignoring Elayne’s pleas that he stay behind over his added wounds. The day goes by, with the men only turning up false leads while riots grow and fade outside, until Nynaeve confronts the three of them and tells them to give up for now, ignoring their protests. She and Elayne arrange for a pallet to be set up in their room for Egeanin, who submits calmly to being searched for weapons; Elayne objects when Nynaeve insists she be bound with the Power, but Nynaeve retorts angrily that she is Seanchan, and Elayne acquiesces. Nynaeve takes the dream ring and tells Elayne to wake her in an hour. After she falls asleep, Egeanin comments to Elayne that she thinks Nynaeve hates her, but Elayne does not; Elayne tells her not to be so sure, but reassures Egeanin that they will not hurt her. She settles down to wait for Nynaeve.

Not to be overly grandiose about it, but this chapter pretty accurately demonstrates one of the major problems with people, in that they often maddeningly insist on being individuals worthy of admiration even when their cultural background contains everything you might abhor. I imagine an analogous situation in our world might be making friends with someone you think is really cool, and then discovering they are a member of the Nazi party.

I’ve not experienced anything quite that dramatic in my own life, but I’ve had similar enough to appreciate the sensation. I remember meeting this one guy at a party who was nice and articulate and witty (and cute), and I was really enjoying talking to him, until he casually mentioned that in his opinion Hurricane Katrina was a judgment on New Orleans for being a den of sin, and it was a shame the whole place and everyone in it hadn’t been wiped off the map.

Let’s just say the conversation went... south, after that. So to speak.

My point is, I have total sympathy for Nynaeve’s dilemma here, because Egeanin is a member of a society who would like nothing more than to enslave and torture anyone like Nynaeve for life, and yet unlike Party Guy is not only a generally admirable person (her letting the sul’dam go at great personal risk proves that if nothing else does), but has declared that it was Nynaeve’s (and Elayne’s) influence that made her reject her own cultural conditioning. Which is great... if you believe it. And while we know that Egeanin is sincere, Nynaeve of course has no such assurance.

This dilemma, by the way, is another thing which nicely defines Elayne and Nynaeve’s respective characters, in a way that is completely believable for both of them. Nynaeve’s natural reaction, as a person who lives on the outside of her skin and has never seen the value of hiding her emotions, is to be pissed, and growly, and conflicted. Elayne, on the other hand, is cursed with the ability to see both sides, and is therefore automatically diplomatic and inclined toward the peacemaker view, which is something instilled in her by training but I think also by personal inclination. I have sympathy for both of their positions.

Other than that there isn’t a whole lot to say about this chapter, which is a ramp up for Shit About To Happen, which we will get to next time.

So here’s to next time, eh? See you Friday. Finish line in sight!

Eric Robinson
1. perrin77
Woot another WOT recap. These make my day. Thank you Leigh
Alex Johns
2. almuric
"Clink a link"?

Try for a bit more sleep, please. :)
John Massey
3. subwoofer
We were all victims of poetry because of the Haiku...
now onto Nazis- oh my!
Is anyone going to dispute that Couladin needs decapitation?
I always look for parallels in our worlds. Like the ice peppers and the sursas etc. Found it interesting the way common things are incorporated.
Leigh-moshimoshi- Joudeki dayo.
Richard Fife
4. R.Fife
Mmm, Sister-Wives are BPFF's Leigh. Makes sense to me. I like battles!

Anyway, I agree on all points (for once?). But, that Maiden is likely not Mehlindra as she is a Shaido, yo.

I know that Asmo as an awesome character was hashed out like mad in the last set of comments, but I will put in my 2 coppers: yes, he rocks. Although, his "vileness" was actually done somewhat weakly, I feel. I mean, he gave his own mother over to shadowspawn and commited plenty of atroscity as a regional governor for the Shadow in the AoL. And all we get from him now is occasional sniveling and harp playing. Where's teh ebil?
Alex Johns
5. almuric
Can I ask a question about Couladin's tattoos? I know he hasn't displayed them yet, but I want to ask: "How did Asmodean make them?" We have heard nothing about a tattoo kit. Did he use the One Power? If so, why would even a Shaido agree to it? Everyone and their mother is scared of male channelers. Why would Couladin not be?

I see no evidence of Couladin being a darkfriend. A typical idiot, megalomaniacal, but no more idiotic than others we meet, like Weiramon. I can't come up with any way to make the tattoos without the One Power and if that's how they're made, Couladin has to be a darkfriend.

But if he was, I think he would have behaved differently. Even though I can see the reasoning behind setting him up as a false Car-a-carn, neither Lanfear nor Asmodean said anything to suppose that that's what they were doing. And it's doubtful it would have been one of the other Forsaken. And if he was a darkfriend all along, then the surprise shown at Rhuidean is out of place. Did Asmodean convert him on the way to Cold Rocks Hold?

I really don't understand how that all worked. Anyone got a clue?
Lannis .
6. Lannis
Couladin = worst poker face ever.

Re: Moiraine... I love any chapter where we can see her human side... the fact that she's getting frazzled just makes me happy. Deep down, I ? Moiraine, but I take extreme pleasure in watching her slowly crack... call me twisted, but it's true.

Great recap, Leigh! Thanks! :)
Andrew Lovsness
7. drewlovs
Sevanna... uggh. I really disliked this character, worst than ANY of the "evil women" (ELO comes to mind here) we see elsewhere. Why? The STEREOTYPES!! She is obsessed with her looks, her appearance, and is always willing to "hop on the good foot to do the bad thing" to further her "career". Why not just use a frikkin' wise woman that is as power hungry as an Aei Sedai? *grumble grumble*

And then there is Egeanin; I actually liked the beginnings of this character, until she found her hubby and lost her intestinal fortitude due to Tuon. It's not that I don't understand; but if Nyn was reduced to groveling because her old teacher in the Two Rivers became an Aei Sedai and had power over her, I would feel the same way. The ruin of an interesting personality.

We are getting to the worst part of the early books for me; it seems to me that there would be other ways of splitting off the "bad" Aeil without destroying their traditions...well, their belief in those traditions, anyway. And Asmo's use of the power to create a fake "he who comes with the dawn" just really frosts my hide, and it has EVERYTIME I've read this book.

Sorry for getting ahead; I'm just cringin' already, you know?
Elroy Skimms
8. elroyskimms
almuric @ 5

Even though I can see the reasoning behind setting him up as a false Car-a-carn, neither Lanfear nor Asmodean said anything to suppose that that's what they were doing. And it's doubtful it would have been one of the other Forsaken.

IIRC, doesn't Asmo confirm to Rand that he made the fake Dragon tats?

Dru O'Higgins
9. bellman
There's no reason Couladin has to know that the power was used to transfer the dragons. Maybe he was told that drawings would transfer to his wrist, the drawings were applied and the power was used without his knowledge.
10. crsandoval
I think this whole part in the waste is one of the best. thanks Leigh for the Re-Read. It helps some of us get through work
sandi vogel
11. sinfulcashew
I watched some of the video from the Con and I must say it is nice to be able to put a face with the words.

Now to the reading!
Jay Dauro
12. J.Dauro
Melaine's line

“The prophecy says ‘a remnant of a remnant shall be saved.’ What we want, Rand al’Thor, Car’a’carn, is to save as many of our people as we can. Whatever your blood, and your face, you have no feeling for us. I will make you know our blood for yours if I have to lay the—”

I always thought she was threatening to lay a marriage wreath for Aviendha, similar to what Avi says Sorilea might do.
John Massey
13. subwoofer
Couladin's tats- 3 words: lick and press.
Captain Hammer
14. Randalator
Don't be stupid, be a smarty
Come and join the Nazi Party!



I don't get the Wise Ones. "Spying is evil, but watching your dreams we're totally cool with. You know, because it's much more intimate. And that makes it okay. Intimate equals okay."

What's up with that?
Sean Banawnie
15. Seanie
@9 Bell

@12 J

agree with you both ,simplest reasons are sometimes best....
wow , more crazy Lanfear ...or I could say Lanfear more crazy...oe even--- more Lanfear crazy....funny-- crazy and Lanfear just go together so well
I always liked these "remember honor " scenes with the Maidens . Great stuff as always Leigh. (with or with out sleep)......but I was a little puzzled looking for the link . *grins*
16. Belmont
Re: Asmodean and Lanfear living on top of each other
in the wagons. I assumed that once they were inside
the wagon they could Travel wherever they wanted to
go to get away from it all. But I'm not sure what would happen if someone was looking for one of them (i.e. Natael, Keille), came by, knocked on their door, and got no answer. Loud snoring sounds created by the Power? A message on the door saying "Gone fishing. Be back later"?. Or a gateway that remains open which goes to a more relaxing space (i.e. like the one Lanfear appears to maintain in the World of Dreams).
Sean Banawnie
17. Seanie
@11 sin do you have a link ?
you're not fifing us are you ?
18. Rebecca Starr
Ch 49
I have always assumed that yes, the three-way marriage is precisely that, so not only is the man married to both women, but the women are married to each other, and thus have, er, conjugal relations. There's a Melaine/Dorindha quote that I know is coming up that supports this, so I'll point it out when we get to it.

Ch 50
Can I just say: poor Seana. This sudden death of hers so soon after we meet her makes her just utterly forgettable. Every re-read, I'm surprised anew to remember she even existed. What a crappy deal Jordan gave her!

Ch 51
you pretty much said it all Leigh. I like the tricksy way El/Nyn/Egeanin become friends here because it just seems so *real*
Galen Brinn
19. GatheringStorm
"Lick and Press"

The first time I read this, I remember thinking that Couladin had "false dragons" on his arms in this scene. I just didn't know who had done it. For some reason, I hadn't figured out that Natael = Asmodean. Like a lot of other people, I fell for the "dupe" characters of Hadnan and Isendre...
20. Whiteknight
I'm probably in a very small camp here but i think the Seanchan are simply misguided in there beliefs of enslavement. I believe it was a cultural assimilation thing that brought them to what they are now. In essence they conquered the people on that far continent but culturally they were the ones that got assimilated. After all it was the a local that made the first adam and the political scheming was also a characteristic of the people there before the arrival of Hawkwing. So really i pity them, they are completely deluded by their beliefs that weren't for the most part theres to begin with.
Sean Banawnie
21. Seanie
or would my grammar be better if I said you are setting us up for a Fife ?
j p
22. sps49
@5 almuric-

Couladin is insane. Delusional, megalomaniacal, and some that have probably been deleted from the APA manual....
Sean Banawnie
23. Seanie
@19 Gathering Storm --that lick and press was cute.
I was half fooled originally . I had a feeling Keille was the crazed one--some of her quotes . There is the one time where she asks Rand if "he belongs to someone else..." , when he is buying from the peddlers..{and Mat gets Hadnan's hat}.
Didn't pick up on Natael till later.
John Pigott
24. AbEnd
Sister-wives with the ability to channel might make for interesting nights for Rhuarc.

"Is that you or just a little weave of Spirit and Earth?"
25. swmdilla
The love quadrangle is really interesting. I mean it could be all Vicky Christina Barcelona but i just don't get that feeling. I hope it has significance in the final books, like the bonds they have save Rand after Tarman Gaidon. I guess we'll see.
sandi vogel
26. sinfulcashew
Seanie @17
What the heck is 'fifing'?
If I even knew how, is it something cool?

I found the link to youtube from an R.Fife post in the last post.(17)

I would put it here but don't know how?
I will try now though.....

This is a link to the second vid of five of the opening w/"ACTING". (Courtesy of Jon Lovitz) The skit.

Aha, easy as pie! Just thought it required more brainwork and special things.
I see people putting up emoticon type things and colors, etc. and haven't a clue how.
Galen Brinn
27. GatheringStorm
sinfulcashew, I believe fifing refers to R.Fife's attempts to Rickroll everyone several threads back. So, definitely

bbCode will give you a primer.
sandi vogel
29. sinfulcashew
Is R.Fife a trouble maker?

After following a couple of other links last night, hers(?) is the only one that came across without having to wait...........for it to download.
I have little patience at times.
John Massey
30. subwoofer
@26Sinful- ahem, not at home so don't have those bookmarks synced but try this
and, um.... Richard Fife is a guy, maybe...
edit- sorry @27gathering- guess I was too late to the party
Kurt Lorey
31. Shimrod
@14 Randalator.

Of all here, I would have listed you last on the old Nazi jokes list.

Besides, I'm pretty sure your rhyme doesn't translate into German the same way.

With sister-wives, I imagine it's a matter of personal preference on the part of the sister-wives (husband's potential for input ignored).

No RickRoll from Mr. Fife (this time). Check it out.
Kurt Lorey
32. Shimrod
Hers?!? You mean the one wearing the Yellow Shawl? ROFLMAO.

No, really.
sandi vogel
33. sinfulcashew
I looked at one of the rickroll links awhile back. EEEgads.
I was afraid!
But, no, if it was a prank I wouldn't participate.
Hmmph. (Nose in air)
34. Lsana
I don't think the sister wives are lovers. I just don't see it in any of the examples we have. At dinner, Rand's thought is that both Amys and Lian were deeply in love with Rhuarc, suggesting that their focus was mostly on him. Melaine is clearly all about Bael, and Dorindha (sp?) doesn't get much more than an occassional mention. And of course, none of Rand's harem ever thinks about each other in that way. It wouldn't be a bad idea if it happened, but there's nothing in the books that suggests that it should.

18. Rebecca Starr,

Glad someone else remembered to take a moment for poor Seana. She's one of only 4 dreamwalkers. She was Egwene's teacher. And except for an offhand sentence in the next chapter, she never gets another mention. No suggestion that Eg was upset about losing one of her teachers, that the Wise Ones were upset about losing a friend, or that anyone in her clan gave a damn about her. We don't even get a suggestion that it will be harder to manage with only 3 dreamwalkers rather than 4. Seana was completely disposible.
sandi vogel
35. sinfulcashew
Sorry Mr. Fife! maybe!

GS (gathering storm) the link you put up isn't working.
Should I be afraid?
AJ MacPherson
36. Mackey62
Couladin, like Gawyn, is a totally misunderstood character and his decisions make prefect sense to me!

Kidding. Off with his head.
37. Browncoat Jayson
RE: Melaine's quote

You have to remember that in the Aiel culture, she would have the right to propose, and the only choice he would have would be to accept or (if I remember correctly) "crush it beneath his feet", thus insulting her (and likely all of the Aiel). He can't lose their support, so that puts him in a bit of a bind, eh?

Still, not a situation where she would like to force him. Makes for a bad leader when he, you know, resents you (as well as not knowing your culture).

Still, I agree that the Wise Ones watching his dreams is a huge breach of personal space. Kudos to him for getting Asmo to teach him to shield his dreams pronto, but I'd have had words for them as well. Especially since Avi gave herself punishment for telling him; no worries about letting on she betrayed their secret.
Blake Engholm
38. UncrownedKing
@14 Randalator
I don't get the Wise Ones. "Spying is evil, but watching your dreams we're totally cool with. You know, because it's much more intimate. And that makes it okay. Intimate equals okay."
What's up with that?

You forget that women in this book *coughAndInrealLifecough* are devious and mildly evil when they want something. And will do mental gymnastics so in thier minds they are completely in the right
-Honestly, who throws a shoe?? ha-

Lick and press = all kinds of awesome. I'll be honest I never figure out how Couly got tat-tat-tatted up but I've always said that I am ignorant to details.

P.S. You know Amys is a minx in bed.
Galen Brinn
39. GatheringStorm
sinfulcashew @ 35. Odd...the link goes straight to the Tor page where it's supposed to go when I click it (hint, it's the same one that's just above the "Post A Comment" box). But here's the full link, anyway:
40. toryx
almuric @5

Aside from Asmodean actually admitting to giving Couladin the dragons in FoH, I don't think we ever really hear how they were done.

I assume that the Dragons are placed there using the One Power, since that's presumably how it'd work using the Ter'angreal. It shouldn't be too difficult for a Forsaken to figure out how to do it too.

I agree that Couladin is just a power-hungry fool/tool, and not an out and out darkfriend. As someone else mentioned, however, it's possible that Asmo put the Dragons on without Couladin knowing it was he, or done with the Power. Couladin would have no way to tell the power from Asmo or a Wise One.

I've personally felt that Couladin is actually deluded enough to believe he is the Car'a'carn. So I wouldn't be surprised if Asmo actually came to Couladin in his dreams or something, and made it seem like he'd been chosen as He Who Comes With the Dawn, and it's his task to show the outsider for the fraud he is. There's no telling if that's what happened but it seems as likely as anything.
41. jlyman
So am I the only one who totally and completely missed the fact that Asmodean was the one who gave Couladin his wicked tats? (wicked, evil, naughty tats) Is there a reference in the books to that or is it mostly conjecture based on what's found in the text?
Jason Deshaies
42. darxbane
R. Fife @ 4,
Even if Melindhra is Shaido, she would still be with the other maidens. The Maidens put their society ahead of clan and sept, just like the wise ones. There are Shaido Maidens guarding Rand even up to book 8 or so, so it could very well have been Melindhra who was trying to get closer to Mat.

Something I have always been very curious about (I know I'm getting a little ahead here); How does Rand apparently lose the ability to see the black strands attached to the Male Forsaken? He sees the True power linked to Ishy, and he sees the Tainterater lines on Asmo, but never notices them again. Any theories as to why?
sandi vogel
43. sinfulcashew
Thank you all for the links to the code pages.
Now If I can just find something to put in here!

GS-Sorry, But it was someone else's link that didn't work. Although I went back looking for it and couldn't find it. It must have been fixed?
Galen Brinn
44. GatheringStorm
Couladin's not a DarkFriend?!?! lol

Nah...he's evil but not that kind of evil. He'd probably be classified as a megalomaniac or if you prefer a more up-to-date term then someone with, narcissistic personality disorder.

Definitely (self)deluded enough to believe that the spontaneous appearance of the dragons to be the real thing.
45. David-2
This is an off topic question. It suddenly popped into my head in the shower and seems to me for some reason to be quite urgent - so after googling and finding no answer I'm asking it now rather than wait for the appropriate chapter, weeks in the future. Thanks in advance for indulging me!

1) Somewhere we learn that Aes Sedai can disolve the warder bond without harm to the warder, for example, if she is about to die of old age she can choose to do this.

2) Alanna has sworn an oath of fealty to Rand.

So: Why doesn't Rand ever order her to dissolve the bond?

(Does he just not know it is possible? If so, why doesn't he ask some pertinent and pointed questions to the Aes Sedai sworn to him to find out what exactly the bond is all about? Or maybe he could ask Lan.)

-- David
Don Johnson
46. Paracelsus
Does anyone else suspect that Asmodean was the one that sent the Trollocs and Dragkar? Asmodean had already broken off from Lanfear's original plan. He had already put the dragons on Couladin. Something tells me that it may have Asmodean this latest batch of Trollocs. I think he may have done this to give the Shaido a chance to take off for the 'Golden Bowl.'

Asmo wanted Rand out of the way so that he could have had unhindered access to Rhuidean. Could be wrong, though.
Kurt Lorey
47. Shimrod
NPD disordered people aren't evil, per se.
Richard Fife
48. R.Fife
Almuric @5:
Mmm, perhaps our favorite get-outta-jail-free card can be used. Asmo compulsed (sticks tongue out at Wetlander) him, perhaps even made him think his stupid story about going into Rhuidean at night and getting the tattoos, but then left out who/what the aiel really were (and let Couladin make it up on the spot at the meeting).

And yeah, made them with the power since they aren't really tats, they are "as though part of the skin, and glitter like metal".

@17 I'm a verb! Weeee
Portalstones WMV downloads
Youtube User who is posting them

I am most definately a man. There is a (non-shawl) photo of me in my user profile, for Light's sake.

@42 Darxbane:
As I recall, all societies will stay with society instead of clan if need be, but as there is a large camp of shaido nearby, and there is no hint of shaido maidens coming along with Couladin to gain entry to Cold Rocks, doesn't seem likely there is a Shaido in the Taardad Maiden Roof.

As to the threads: the Ishy ones were kinda special since perhaps ishy was really deeply in the TP (snerk) at the time. For Asmo, he specifically has to look for them, and that was probably some intuitive power-weaving to see them. I don't think he ever had a clear look at Rahvin or Sammy to bother looking for them, as both do a very cat-and-mouse fight with Rand.
F Shelley
49. FSS
whiteknight@20 - I'm with you on this for one VERY important reason: It is obvious that Seanchan was Shadow-controlled territory during the War of the Shadow. It is also obvious that the so-called "Aes Sedai" in Seanchan were Dark-Friends (the Black Ajah, or any other color-coded Ajah, not being invented yet).

The reasons:
1. The symbol of the Imperial family? The Raven
2. The name of the Army? The Armies of the Night
3. The Adam is a ter'angreal that works like the Black Ajah's involuntary circle.
4. Which was invented by an Aes Sedai to control other Aes Sedai already in Seanchan
5. And I'm sure slavery was already in force there

So, when the Luthair landed in Seanchan and began to conquer, he co-opted and was co-opted by the descendents of the Shadow-occupied lands. And the Aes Sedai there were all Darkfriends, and if you want to battle a Dreadlord with another Dreadlord, you need some means of doing exactly that, which turned out to be an adam.

Also bear in mind the mindset of Hawkwing and his sons: all Aes Sedai are evil. Seanchan 2000 years ago just proved it for Luthair, with the unfortunate result that non-darkfiends were chained ever since.

Also, is anyone offended for Moghedien's sake when Nynaeve and Elayne use an adam on her?
Captain Hammer
50. Randalator
Shimrod @31

Of all here, I would have listed you last on the old Nazi jokes list. Besides, I'm pretty sure your rhyme doesn't translate into German the same way.

Please don't tell me you've never heard of The Producers...
F Shelley
51. FSS
@45 - He ordered her to, and she refused until she knows that the other bond holder can handle him. She doesn't know it's 3 bond holders...
52. David-2
FSS@51: That was after she swore fealty? I didn't remember that, but if so, how does that square with her oath?

I think Min says of some of the Aes Sedai sworn to him that "she will obey after her fashion". I never quite understood what that meant, except that it meant it was a rather fishy oath and Rand had better not trust it too far. (And I don't remember if Alanna was one of those Aes Sedai Min spoke of.)
Michael Catapano
53. hoping
I agree with Toryx@40 about couladin not being a DF but simply normal, human evil and was duped by Asmo.

Paracelsus @46
I don't like to jump ahead, but, in an upcoming chapter, Lanfear does confirm it was Asmo who sent the shadowspawn and set up Couladin to distract Rand while he went to Rhuidean.
Still begs the question of how the shadowspawn got so far into the Waste, but I won't go there again. (oops, I just did)

Seana=redshirt Aiel
Richard Fife
54. R.Fife
@49 FSS:
Interesting idea, cept that Seanchan had also prior to Luthair managed to destroy all the trollocs and fades in their blight. It was Aes Sedai that were there prior to Luthair that brough the grolm et al from the portalstones to fight the shadowspawn in the blight. Substantiated in the BBoBA.

I think it is more likely that the Aes Sedai of over there were just without a central power structure, and thus were more likely to be involved in direct rule of the land as well as amoral, crazy things. I'll grant you, though, that Luthair and Seanchans fixations on otherwise dark-motifs is off-setting. I think it was supposed to be more of a red-herring, though, to make us think all of Seanchan was shadowsworn. More likely Luthair picked those motifs as a bit of a finger to the Dark One, who had very little influence over there without shadowspawn harrassing people.

Although, it is of note, that the Seanchan blight, while not advancing and mostly "dormant", still is very deadly, just not as deadly as the westlands blight.
Galen Brinn
55. GatheringStorm
When any of the Forsaken get chained with an a'dam, I have no problems with it. Reasons being are all the crimes that have been/are being committed by them. In their case, it's nothing more than modern day prison.

For Egwene or anyone else who's never committed a crime, it's involuntary servitude and the deliberate breaking of that person so that they are...pliable...for lack of a better term.

The key differences for me are intent and usage of the a'dam. If the intent is to break someone's will, then the usage is torture and enslavement. If the intent is to bind someone for criminal transgressions, then as long as unnecessary torture happens, it's not any different than say...a jail cell.

But that's just me. *ducks incoming torture debate*
56. David-2
(speaking of flaky oaths, by the way, which I was doing even if nobody else was ...

The most shocking thing in the whole series that an Aes Sedai does, in my opinion, is when Siuan (no longer able to channel but still Aes Sedai to her bones) swears "an oath that noone but a Darkfriend would break" to Gareth Bryne and then immediately breaks it, with the airy excuse that she would obey him, she just didn't say when.

I'm telling you, if I was Rand al'Thor I wouldn't rely on any Aes Sedai I hadn't personally Compelled to obey me. Oaths just wouldn't suffice.)
57. crsandoval
Couladin's Dragons are not tatoo's and neither are rands they are made from the power. I doubt someone was in the glass ter' angreal with needles and ink. So i am sure it was not too hard for asmodean to make other dragons with the power
58. JamesEdJones
42 darxbane AND 48 Fife

Just wanted to clarify on the black wires. As far as I remember, Rand only saw them in TAR and while Skimming. All of the Ishy wire events occured in TAR, while the Asmo sighting took place while Skimming. Please let me know if I was wrong.
sandi vogel
59. sinfulcashew
MR. Fife-Ok, so I went and checked and unless you had a LOT of surgical work are definitely a boy!

But your hobbit kitties look like demoniac cats!The glowing eyes.
Just joking of course, I have two kitties myself that sometimes act like they are. PJ thinks he is all studly and whenever I open the door, he tries to show Rosie, the other one, just how manly he could have been.

Sorry for getting all off topic, but when there is a question of gender, I think it is important to get it straight!
Sean Banawnie
60. Seanie
@55 GS
agree , big difference in holding innocent person and one of the evilest of evil.{not to mention powerful} just for light's sake don't bring up spanking. oops . *duckcoverroll*

Asmo=slacker Forsaken
Tracy Long
61. BookFairy
Lian –yes both of Rhuarc wives are cool!
I usually enjoy the “bad guy’s” in WOT but Couledin, not even fun to hate.
It is also interesting to see where the Aile live. Nice caves!

The ceremony with the maidens “Remember honor”.
And then they volunteering to be his guard. Rand should have known better.

As for Egeanin, it was nice to see her again.
Galen Brinn
62. GatheringStorm
David-2 @ 56,

If I'm not mistaken, part of their oath was to serve him until (the conclusion of?) Tarmon Gai'don. Since it includes a fixed end-date then it implies "from now until".

I don't have my book handy but the oath may have explicity stated a time frame as well. Anyone got this line handy?
63. jlyman
Okay, I do believe everyone about Asmodean giving the dragon markings to Couladin. I think it's just been a long time since I have read this particular book. And I am lagging far behind in my own re-read, still in The Great Hunt (stupid work and family responsibilities!).

And really I just call them tattoos for lack of a better term. What would you call them? Skin grafts? Metallic skin accessorising? I don't know. I guess markings is as good as it gets.
Richard Fife
64. R.Fife
@58James: I just checked on both counts, and yes. The black wires were only visible in TAR and the skimming place, with a specific clause during the asmo fight saying that Rand had not seen them since the skimming place, and as he never got a clear look at Rahvin, I guess that explains that. I wonder why Nynaeve didn't see them, though. Maybe something about being there physically.
65. toryx
The whole Dreamwalking thing has always bothered me. The Wise Ones are always big on talking about what's dangerous and evil and wrong but that never stops them from interfering with things or pursuing questionable activities.

I guess they hold themselves to a different code of conduct than they hold others, particularly when it comes to spying on people. Or maybe they're the-ends-justify-the-mean-ers.

Taking Egwene into Rhuarc's dreams as a demonstration, when it's done by his wife doesn't seem so bad (who I'd like to presume had gotten his permission). Encouraging her to poke into other people's dreams without letting them know, however, just rubs me the wrong way. What's more personal than that? It's like searching through someone's underwear drawer or being a peeping tom while they're showering or having sex. Only, worse.

Hell, it even smacks a little of mind-rape to me. And you'd think that this is a favorite tactic of the Forsaken, the human equivalent of evil in their worldview, I'd have thought the Wise Ones would be a little more wary of doing so themselves.

Or maybe I'm just taking it too personally. But I know if I were Rand, I'd be inclined to react furiously and probably do something I'd regret later. You just don't poke into my head.
Galen Brinn
66. GatheringStorm
BookFairy said
The ceremony with the maidens “Remember honor”. And then they volunteering to be his guard. Rand should have known better.

I'm not sure I follow. How, exactly, should have Rand known better when he wasn't raised in that culture? He had no knowledge of regard gifts, etc. The only cultural knowledge he had of the Aiel was from Aviendha's fingernail-on-chalkboard-lectures from the last few days. And based on her (Aviendha's) attitude towards him, who can blame him for zoning out during said lectures and thinking about which person was one of the Forsaken and what traps they were laying for him?
67. David Scotton
Also, was Melaine seriously thinking that if she proposed to Rand he would actually accept? Because, you know, no.

I'm pretty sure she was referring to laying a marriage wreath for Aviendha. Look at the line in context - Rand says he knows Aviendha is their spy, yet they don't seem to care. Melaine says she wants to make Rand know their blood for his. Obviously Aviendha's main purpose isn't spying but making Rand fall in love with her, and if they've been spying on his dreams they have some reason to believe that plan is succeeding.
Tracy Long
68. BookFairy
Any time you participate in a ceremony you don't understand in a culture you weren't raised in it's
never a good thing. Shouldn't alarm bells went of when they took giving Avienda a gift soooo seriously?
69. Norry
@14 Randalator

Curse you for beating me to it.

Germans, go into your dance!
Galen Brinn
70. GatheringStorm
Maybe, but a bit late at that point, wouldn't you agree? If he backed out then, how many people would he have pissed off? Also, how would he have known the Maidens would volunteer to be his bodyguards? How could he prevent that...again, without pissing off more people than you can count?

Ignorance got him into the situation but I think backing out, at any point, would have caused even more problems.
71. wsean
Re: Seana's death. Yeah, I always forget about her. It's just as well, though. We've got Seanchan and Siuan Sanche and Seaine, all pronounced differently, did we really need another one? Although Sean is a pretty awesome name.
John Massey
72. subwoofer
Hmmmm other's culture's rituals.
Any time you participate in a ceremony you don't understand in a culture you weren't raised in it's
never a good thing.

Yes, Aviendha showed great restraint at Rand's blundering around. I am just this side of surprised that Rand did not accidentally engage himself or adopt a pet gara in the whole time. Also equally amazed that no aiel tried to sell him a dried river bed.
Alex Johns
73. almuric
Since the dreamwalkers can see into the future, one would assume they also know Aviendha and Rand are gonna fall in love. And they can probably tell that it's necessary in order for things to go well. I'd guess Melaine was just gonna rush thing before Amys interferes.

So we're agreed Couladin's dragons were applied with the One Power and that he doesn't appear to be a darkfriend. So what did Asmodean do - convince him that he was just an accidental channeler who, btw, knows how to make dragon tattoos? The only other explanation is compulsion, like Mr. Fife suggested. From what I understand of compulsion, (and I'm not from the Age of Legends, so my knowledge is incomplete) compulsion is difficult to do well. I don't remember anything about Asmodean being particularly good at it.

So either you make Couladin convinced he went to Rhuidean, which would fall apart the next time he talked to his buddies.

"Hey, check out these nice tats I got in Rhuidean."
"Dude, you so did not go to Rhuidean."
"I totally did. Look!" Points at forearms.
"Uh, dude, you're loony. Oh look, I've got the bleakness. Gotta go."

Or you make Couladin convinced that he was, what, 'magically' given the dragons? Wouldn't he give himself away there, too?

"Rand al'Liar had to go to Rhuidean to get his tats. I got mine while I was sleeping. How cool is that? You guys should totally follow me. I got 'em right before dawn, so you know the prophecy was fulfilled. It was wicked."

I'm reading Path of Daggers right now. We never see the average Shaido and why they're following first Couladin and then Sevanna. They know the prophecies as well as all the rest of the Aiel, I'm sure. Why the hell is anyone following them? Force of personality? There's already plenty of precedent for other tribes taking in Shaido who don't wanna follow a false Car-a-carn. And then Sevanna starts acting like a clan chief. Why would the average Aiel put up with that. Are we supposed to believe that the Shaido are all just genetically deficient in the clue department whereas every other Aiel is the most honorable bad-ass in existence?

Somebody please give me a rational explanation for how Couladin got those dragon tats.

(And I know we haven't got there yet, but put me down in the 'pissed off' column that Jordan didn't write a wicked fight scene when Mat gave Coula-headless his just deserts.)
74. Zeynep
@40 Toryx: That "Asmodean appeared to Couladin in his dreams" thing makes a lot of sense to me. Previously I always thought Couladin sneaked down to Rhuidean without the knowledge or permission of the Wise Ones (and I think he says that outright, later) but of course, because he sneaked down that way, no one had told him what it would be like or what to do ("go into the glass columns," etc.) So he had no idea what to expect, and if a man appeared to him, especially in some kind of Illusion, or a disembodied (Asmodean knows the Invisibility weave) voice boomed out "You are the Car'a'carn" as soon as he stepped into the first square of the abandoned city and then the Dragons appeared on his arms, how would he know that wasn't supposed to be the way?

...or as soon as he stepped into the city he fell asleep---I'm sure there is a weave for that---was drawn into T'A'R, and off we go. Again, he would not know that was not how it was supposed to be.

Re: Asmo being not quite evil, I always thought he was an illustration of what becomes of talented, but unambitious people: Endless ages of music sounded so attractive to him, maybe with added fear of death, that he gave his soul to the Dark One---and he must have been at least exceptional in the Power for the Dark One to even want him---but once immortal, he has very little he wants to do with it. Therefore, he's ineffectual. His entire machinations, even the most ambitious one---going after the sa'sa'angreal---always sounded like he undertook them reluctantly, to protect himself, to me.
75. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
I love Mat's "Two of them" quote.. I think I'll quote it later.
Was it really necessary to include the girls misadventures in Tanchico?

J.Dauro @12
No not for Avi. For herself. Which is as appalling to us as it was for the other Wise ones. If their reaction is anything to judge by.

Uncrowned King @38
Yes, another instance of hypocrisy. We get a lot of this from the major influence-peddling female-dominated groups in WoT.

David-2 @45
He asked her nicely in Far Madding. And the answer he got was that she still considered him her Warder even if he does not accept it. Blah blah blah, she would have to check those she would pass it on to see that they are capable of handling him blah blah blah. Apparently her oath of fealty does not cover it.

David Scotton @ 67
Except that Melaine doesn't have as much chutzpah as Sorilea. And laying a bridal wreath is generally a personal act among Aiel females. Melaine's wording says "the bri-" not "her bri-"
76. Zeynep
alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed @75: I still think David was right, though---Melanie might not have as much chutzpah, but she does have a flaring temper and some impulsiveness, and the sentence "I would make you wed Aviendha if I had to lay the bridal wreath myself" would make complete grammatical sense. That's how I have read it, from the first.
Captain Hammer
77. Randalator
Almuric @73

"And why did they refuse me?" Couladin snarled. "Because the Aes Sedai told them to! Rhuarc does not tell you that one of the Aes Sedai went down from Chaendaer with this wetlander! That is how he returned with the Dragons! By Aes Sedai witchery! My brother Muradin died below Chaendaer, murdered by this wetlander and the Aes Sedai Moiraine, and the Wise Ones, doing Aes Sedai bidding, let them walk free! When night came, I went to Rhuidean. I did not reveal myself until now because this is the proper place for the Car'a'carn to show himself! I am the Car'a'carn!"
(TSR, ch. 57)

So apparently after Asmodean approached him he went into hiding to match his story of sneaking into Rhuidean. Average Joe Shaido is all "Yeah, he was like totally gone, dude. Oh look, a spoon." and follows Couladin in the general direction of fucked-upness...
Rikka Cordin
78. Rikka
I completely forgot today was Wednesday (Reading Day and packing/studying/not having classes ruins my time-sense) so when I remembered that this updated today I was very excited :D

Of course, I've been naughty and have been reading ahead which takes all the fun out of the reread blog. But I'll be back in full swing once we hit PoD (I only own up through CoS).
79. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Zeynep @76
What she says is "I will make you know our blood for yours if I have to lay the-", not "I would make you wed Aviendha if I had to lay the bri-". If she really meant somebody else she could have just said "I will make you know our blood for yours if I have to lay her bridal..."
We are talking about possibly the most impulsive and hot-tempered of the Aiel Wise Ones. And one who is currently at the prime of her life. She's not likely to think before making such a statement. What did you think she was going to say? "I will make you know our blood for yours if I have to lay the-" bridal wreath of Aviendha? Grammatically correct, yes. But cumbersome for a native speaker.
Don Barkauskas
80. bad_platypus
How about "...if I have to lay the bridal wreath for her."? Perfect grammatical sense and very natural as well.
81. alreadymadwhenLanfearinvadedmydreams
Good point. You have yours and I have mine. I still think Melaine meant her own wreath.
Jay Dauro
82. J.Dauro
Melaine marries Bael in TFoH 21. Somehow, I don't think she is hot-headed enough to marry Rand here when the Wise Ones have put Avi there just for that purpose.

In TFoH 23 Avi says that if she argued with Sorilea, Sorilea would make a bridal wreath for Avi, lay it at Faren's feet and force him to pick it up.

It makes much more sense to me that Melaine is also speaking in that vein.

And she could still say "If I have to lay the - " Bridal wreath myself. The other WO would know what she was saying.
Galen Brinn
83. GatheringStorm bad are we when we debate the theoretical ending to a sentence and how grammatically correct it is? LMAO
Roger Powell
84. forkroot
Leigh, I'm not sure your analogy using the "cute party guy" applies to Egeanin, unless you also found out next that he was seriously questioning the extreme beliefs that he had previously held.

It's clear that once the supergirls get over the initial shock of Egeanin being Seanchan, they do hear that she is in the process of rethinking her whole life's attitudes, conditioning, etc. Even though they are cautious about believing her, it does put the situation in a different light.

OTOH, the initial shock value was greater. You'd only been chatting with Mr. Witty for a little while. Elayne and Nyaneve had had a week or so to know her and had grown to like her.

Now.. having just criticized your analogy :-), let me turn around and tell you how much I enjoy this re-read. Others have said it before, and others will say it later, but it's my turn now:

Chris Hall
85. bookwormchris
@40 and other(s): I was thinking it was in a dream that he gets his Dragons, but I'm not sure why I was thinking that. Possible that there is some textual support for that. (My books are coming! I have to give them up for a few weeks after the arrive though.) Certainly I always thought the dragons were applied with the Power since they are not traditional tattoos. (Is there a scene some where where we get an image of the dragons settling on Rand's arms? I have a sudden visualization of that...)

As for the black lines that Rand sees, I wonder if only male channelers can see them? If they only show up in TAR and the Skimming place, I wonder what that says about them. Those were always interesting to me, since they are a physical (visual) manifestation of their connection to the Dark One. Then we have all these marks being put on people (Rand's luv bite, Fain's ability to see the taint of the shadow, others.) I'm minded slightly of The Picture of Dorian Gray.
Richard Fife
86. R.Fife
she could also have meant to say "If I have to lay the oats before bela myself." It is well known that laying oats before a horse in Aiel culture would incur much toh on the horses owner (still technically Rand in lieu of Tam). Now, since we also know that Bela is the Creator/DO (they're the same, afterall) and a Dreamer, it makes sense that the Dreamers would know that laying the oats before Bela would not only bind Rand to the Aiel forever, but also teach him how to laugh and cry again. A shame the dreaming also told them that they could not tell Sorilea about Bela.
Roger Powell
87. forkroot
R.Fife - Perhaps this explains why Melaine gets the hots for Bael. I wonder if there's any character whose name is an anagram for Aldieb?
Richard Fife
88. R.Fife
Forkroot: can't think of Aldieb off hand, but Faile did call herself Mandarb to begin with. Makes you wonder where Perrin's mind really is.
Captain Hammer
89. Randalator
bookwormchris @85

Is there a scene some where where we get an image of the dragons settling on Rand's arms? I have a sudden visualization of that...

Egwene has a Dream of Rand with dragons swirling around him and settling into his skin but we never get to see the actual process.
90. Vecki
Hello, hello, long time lurker, first time poster, blah blah blah.

I always figured Melaine was talking about laying Aviendha out (presumably naked) in front of Rand. She wants him to 'know his blood for theirs', not necessarily for them to be wed. So I always thought she was about to say 'lay the fool girl in front of him' or something to that effect.

Amys says at some point after 'The Far Snows' that 'she (Avi) has been more successful than you know', and that she was waiting for Avi to tell them, but since she hadn't... and then they notice Rand standing, you know, RIGHT THERE.
91. Freelancer
Melaine was speaking in behalf of Aviendha when she cracks out of school and almost gives away one of their secrets.

Aviendha was ordered to teach and stay close to Rand for a reason. The Wise Ones know she will be his, and are facilitating that in the hopes that it will save lives.

Melaine is one of the Wise Ones that knows this. She isn't going to propose to Rand for herself. They obviously believe that the quicker HHCWtD is attached to them by marriage, the better their chances of increasing the size of that "remnant of a remnant".

Also, this isn't the only place in the story where there is a suggested threat that a Wise One might drop a bridal wreath before an hombre on another female's behalf. Was it Sorilea?

RE: Rhuarc and his wives

Some pairs of Aiel women become first-sisters to facilitate becoming sister-wives to one man. Others will only marry a man who can accept both of them because they were already first-sisters. Regardless of which is the case, any intimate behavior on their parts now smacks of incest, since within the Aiel culture they are as blood sisters. But, some folks need their daily prurient fix like others need caffeine.

RE: Tanchico thread

I find it amusing that when she's offscreen and it's possible, the Elayne-bashers are out in force nailing her to the cross for every brand of unpleasantness known to man (that's the non-gender form of man there, BTW). But here she and Nynaeve are the focus of an entire chapter, and after 90+ comments not one giving her the customary backhand to the cheek. I suppose it's just that she's actually thoughtful and decent and pleasant in this chapter. Ok, so when we get to the chapter where she turns into stupid on a stick, ya'll will let me know? Because this seems like the same person I read about throughout the entire series. Lack of information sharing, of which none in Randland is guiltless, is her major defect. Unlike Nynaeve, whenever Elayne realizes she's handled something poorly, she repents and atones. Nynaeve deflects and berates. But Nynaeve gets all the love, while Elayne gets all the hate. Her other defect is having her nose in the air. Just like all the Elayne haters.

RE: The Black Threads

As previously noted, only visible in T'a'R, but there seems to be a slightly more complex set of conditions than simply that. Rand has seen them three times.
- Aginor while they fought near the Green Man's place, and they were surely in T'a'R, though we didn't know it at the time.
- Ishamael's cords were not visible to Rand above Falme, and it would be hard to say that was T'a'R, since everyone for leagues around could see the fight. Later, when Ishy's cords are visible, they are in T'a'R for sure.
- Asmodean, while skimming to Rhuidean

No mention is made of Rahvin's cords, thought he and Rand fought in T'a'R. But they are both there in the flesh, entered via gateway. Times when Rand dreamed in T'a'R of Ba'alzamon, Demandred, or Sammael, he sees nothing, but it's possible that the forsaken are there in the flesh at those times.

And one more for Leigh:

An itch in my nose
A poetic allergy?
I haiku atchoo!


Zarine introduced herself to Perrin as Mandarb when they got on the ship to Illian. When he laughed at her, she got very irate until he told her it was the stallion's name as well. Then she backpedaled, admitted it was her own selection as a Hunter name, and decided maybe she'd just go with Faile.
So what does all that have to do with Perrin's mindset? He wasn't into her when she was Mandarb, or Zarine, or even Faile until not long before she gets caught by the Hedgehog in Tear.
Richard Fife
92. R.Fife
...ow. I was poking fun along the lines of Bela/Bael and my Batshit Crazy Bela theory above. Never meant anything serious to come from the comment. At all. Not an iota.

And... ah, the GreenMan-TAR theory. I heard that alot from a few people at JC. They were kinda froathy at the mouth and wild-eyed. ;)

Although, I do admit it is possible that the GreenMan's Grove was tied to TAR, especially with the need element to it and how it can move, perhaps since it was only "half TAR", we had no cords.

Also, End of TDR, both Ishy and Rand were there in the flesh. I again think it was just that Rand never had a clear view of Rahvin in TAR that is why we never heard about black-cords.

When does Rand see the others in TAR via Dream? I thought that was always Perrin or Nynaeve or such.
Sam Mickel
93. Samadai

I think RFife is saying that Perrin has a thing for horses.
F Shelley
94. FSS
David-2 @52.

Yes, the conversation happens afterwards. She gave her oath of fealty with the first set of Aes Sedai at Dumai's wells, he ordered her to release him during Winter's Heart in Far Madding.

"Because you took me, Alanna," he said coldly. "If more sisters knew, you would be the one birched." Min had told him once that he could trust Alanna, that she had seen the Green and four other sisters "in his hand." He did trust her, in an
odd fashion, yet he was in Alanna's hand, too, and he did not want to be. "Release me, and I'll deny it ever happened." He had not even known that was possible until Lan told him about himself and Myrelle. "Release me, and I'll set you free of
your oath."

Her next sentence:

"I've thought of being free of you," she said finally. "I have dreamed of it." She gave a small, rueful laugh. "I even asked Cadsuane to let me pass the bond to her. A sign of how desperate I was, to ask such a thing. But if anyone can handle
you, Cadsuane can. Only, she refused. She was furious that I suggested it without asking you, outraged, but even if you agreed, she won't." She spread her hands. "So you are mine." Her face did not change, but as she said that, the joy flared
anew. "However I acquired you, you are my Warder, and I have a responsibility. That is as strong in me as the oath I swore to obey you. Every bit as strong. So I will not release you to anyone unless I know she can handle you properly. Who bonded you? If she is capable, I will let her have you."
Roger Powell
95. forkroot

can't think of Aldieb off hand, but Faile did call herself Mandarb to begin with. Makes you wonder where Perrin's mind really is.

LOL! I'd forgotten about that!

Welcome aboard. Given the Aiel's use of the expression "laying the bridal wreath" I doubt that Melaine intended to use the term in any other way.

As for "laying Avienda", well lets just say that "He Who Comes with the Dong" takes care of that soon :-)
96. IHeartMatrim!
Avid reader, first time poster...Love the reread, Leigh THANK YOU BUNCHES! And thank you all, for giving me something to read other than nursing textbooks!

Ok, so just a thought floating in my head (and I don't have my books on hand to give your exact quotes)...Amys makes a comment that Avi was "more successful than she knows" (or he or us or whatever). Min has seen that Avi will have Rand's babies and something will be odd about them. Prophecy says Rand will save "a remnant of a remnant" of the Aiel. I've wondered if the oddness of Avi's babies were that they were the last of the Aiel to survive after the Last Battle--the rest having died in the war. It's a bit of a stretch, but maybe it explains why Avi's babies are odd and the Amys comment (after all, what else did Avi succeed at? It isn't teaching Rand about the Aiel culture, that's for sure!)What do you all think?
Alice Arneson
97. Wetlandernw

JMO: Pretty sure Amys does mean the... uh... warming up in the igloo... with that comment. However, we're also pretty sure that didn't result in a pregnancy, because the Wise Ones who do the first-sister bonding between A&E down the line a ways would NOT do that if either were pregnant. Something about it being too hard on the babies. Also the fact that quite some time after the igloo event, she still shows no signs.

As for the remnant of a remnant, it's as valid as any other theory! No opinion worth voicing, myself.
98. RobMRobM
Leigh's comment on Mat's development as a battle leader triggered a thought about why WoT is so cool - because it is so freakin long stories can develop over many volumes, increasing the power of the eventual payoff.

Consider Mat - Book 1: wise off with bravery, archery skills, a penchant for the old tongue but gets into trouble with the knife. 2: Pretty much the same but getting sicker. 3: Gets cured (in doing so, speaking more old tongue), shows master skills in quarterstaff, shows emergence of luck in random games, and tons of bravery and intestinal fortitude in trip from TV to Camelyn to Tear; 4: Learns future from snakes, gains ashendari, memories, full knowledge of Old tongue and knowledge of battles from foxes and spends most of book being introspective while integrating all he has learned and learning the asha-whatever is perfectly suited to his fighting skils; 5: Big payoff as integration continues until it flowers in the battle plan scene in the tent with Lan outside of Carhien and the "gotta get away" battles with the group that turned into the Band. His wise ass nature, reluctance to take charge, luck, fighting skills and battle skills all came together in incredibly powerful fashion.

This is of course followed by the second long arc where he trains the Band using his knowledge but then gets pulled away on the five freakin book long frolic and detour to Ebou Dar, in which he is continually masterful but is poorly used by Nyn and Elayne, and then has the neverending slow trip towards safety with Luca's circus and a traveling menagerie of Sul'dam, Aes Sedai, an innkeeper, a child, the DoNM and her hidden bodyguard. The quick hit chapters where Talmanes shows up, Mat rejoins the Band and sets up the complex series of battles that blow the minds on Tuon, Seluccia, the Seanchan General, Karede and Musenge - and the readers. So well done, and so powerful given all the cr*p Mat has had to put up with over the preceding half-dozen books. nice to see the "Are you a battle leader in your own land" line as one of early hints at the fun stuff coming. Rob
99. Freelancer

Well, far be it from me to sense the humor in something I can take too seriously. Seriously.

There are Rand dreams where he seems to be in the Ways (it's before he has seen them for real), and is alternately watching and hiding from Ishamael. If I remember correctly, Ishy meets other males in that place, and speaks briefly with them while Rand peeks over a railing.


Alanna is speaking straight, so when she says, "However I acquired you, you are my Warder, and I have a responsibility. That is as strong in me as the oath I swore to obey you. Every bit as strong." she must mean it exactly. I meant to comment on this before, and add that Rand does not issue a command. His words, "Release me and I'll set you free of your oath", are an offer, a proposed trade. I suspect that the oath to obey could have been invoked had he made it a direct command, but she clearly doesn't see it that way, especially since she uses the strength of that very oath in her description of why she won't allow herself to release him, that his care is now her duty.

She also cannot be hedging when she tells him that if the woman who bonded him is capable, she'll let her have him. It's too direct a statement to allow for avoidance of the First Oath. But Rand has no intention of telling Alanna to whom he is bonded, because:
1) It includes an Aiel Wise One Apprentice, a non-channeler, and a rebel Accepted. We just know she'd react to that like an Illuminator's nightflower
2) He is in love with all three, and they with him

So, things stay as they are in terms of Alanna's bond.
John Massey
100. subwoofer
Wetlandernw@97- warn a guy when you type something like that-
Pretty sure Amys does mean the... uh... warming up in the igloo...

am now wiping my monitor dry... LOL!
Was thinking about a few things. One, what kind of time line is Rand on where he is concerned about the Forsaken catching up vs. his mad rush to the Golden Bowl. Is it prophisized or is it just an internal clock in Rand's head.

Two- Rand buggering about in TAR. I seem to remember Mog freaking out about it to Nynaeve and a few other instances where Rand is blundering around and others see him. There was a point in an earlier book before Rand learned to ward his dreams where he was lashing out at everyone. Has he become a master of this from LTT? And if it is so dangerous for a novice to go into TAR by themselves, why hasn't Rand bit the big one by one of the Forsaken laying a trap for him etc?

I think in the fight with Rahvin, the air turns to jello and he gets attacked by piranha. Are these blind flailings with the Power LTT taking control or Rand learning from him or instinct? Always bothered me how convenient that all was for the guy. It is like the Forsaken are giving him a golf handicap or something.

um... Go Rossi!
Lannis .
101. Lannis
GatheringStorm @ 55: I agree with you on the chaining Forsaken with a'dam... the intent is everything... well put.

Glad to see some new names at the party these last couple of threads--hi guys! :)

R.Fife @ 86 & 88: re: laying the oats... BAHAHAhahaa!

R.Fife, Freelancer & Samadai: re: Perrin has a thing for horses...

Of course he does--he's a blacksmith... ba dum chi! ;)

(The urge to do it was too much--sorry folks!)
102. Planeswalker
Chap49. I still don't get it why they put up with Couladin here. Can't the Shaido decide already for a new clan chief? And then even if its Couladin, let him pass through Rhuidean first? Passing the test, he'd probably die there too anyway.

Moiraine to one side and Lanfear to the other. How could I have more danger than that?
Seems like he doesn't consider Asmo here yet.

Sister-wives. Yea. Definitely threesome action there.:)

Chap50. Elayne/Min/Aviendha - Rand - Lanfear... Oh boy. What is with Rand's dreams and a pond? And also.. Neck-biting? I definitely dig Lanfear! Hahaha

I also wonder at the end of the chapter, why does Rand always have to ask Mat if he's going with him? Does Rand want Mat with him always (the sense that of all the people there in the waste, Mat is the one he trusts most)? Or he wants him to go somewhere else already (the sense that Mat always tried noticeably to leave)?

Chap51. Yea, I also did wonder why include this Tanchico chapter in today's reread here? Supergirls' chapters are sometimes somewhat or somehow irritating. Some of them. Some. Especially here. Where Thom is degraded as a character.

Anyways, reading the commentaries... Lots of R.Fife floating around. Hehehe Thanks for uploading the videos... Gotta watch them later. Can't wait!
Richard Fife
103. R.Fife
And last one from me for a while:
I decided to get off my lazy spank-receptical seeing as TSR is almost done and got my tGH parody written. Probably will edit any bad rhymes/rhythms tomorrow after I've had sleep, but the mostly finished product is over in tGH-9.
104. toddywatts
Almuric @73

That's the funniest thing I've read all week. Thank you!
105. Valan
@ Free 91

To be clear I actually hate Elayne because of her absolute awful treatment of Mat. This is a mortal sin because Mat is The Most Awesome Character Ever IMHO and this fact therefore overrides all of the well she seems ok now and transcends all past and future events. Elayne is a stuck up bitch.
*clears throat* Sorry had to get that out of my system.

Anyway @ FSS 49.
That is actually one of the coolest theories I've heard in a while about Seanchan being originally Darkfriend controlled, I think this makes total sense before the Breaking, but after there was so much change it might have lost its inherent evil and became simply f*cked up. (complete speculation I know but fun) I'd like to read some other opinions on this if anyone feels up to it.

and Leigh
"Lian and Amys and Rhuarc, though, are totally having crazy threesome action. Because I Said So."
Andrew Lovsness
106. drewlovs
I really think the whole "why do the Shaido follow Couladin" is actually a REALLY interesting conversation. Not many have picked up on it, which I interpret as a lot of "you know, I really have no idea.".

Couladin has the right blood-line, obviously, since his brother was there to take the clan chief eye test; but after he lost his head, literally, many of them should have realized that the "wetlander" was the real deal.

Walk down the thought process, pretend you are a Shaido Aiel...can YOU think of a reason they would put up with Sevanna? For a few months, I can accept the shock at what Rand told the Aiel world... but soon, tradition and legend resume their rightful place, and more and more I would thing an average Shaido that wasn't taken by the bleakness would start to gravitate to considering returning to the other clans.

Perhaps they do not feel that is possible?
Alice Arneson
107. Wetlandernw
"you're not fifing us are you?"

"I'm a verb! Weee!"

Hours later, I'm still giggling. My husband is seriously considering treatment options for my obviously pending breakdown.
Kevin Morgan
108. DrMorganstien
this has been one of the funniest threads here in a while, go everyone
craig thrift
109. gagecreedlives
As anyone actually seen an Aiel beggar?

“When you show the Dragons, they will know you. There is no way to imitate the Dragons of Rhuidean.” Had Moiraine’s eyes flickered?”

How much does Moraine actually know here? Has she been spying on Couladin and if so why hasn’t she warned the other others or is this something she has picked up in Rhuidean?


Not sure about the red herring but Ishy played a big part in the sending of Hawkings army across the ocean. Maybe he had something to do with the naming.
April Moore
110. aprildmoore
@ R.Fife

Yes, you are now a verb. Congratulations. I was certainly more surprised than you were. Wikipedia entry forthcoming. :-)
111. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
J.Dauro @82
Very good. But at this point, Rand al'Thor was an unknown quantity to them. They did know how he would react. I guess the only thing we can agree on is that Melaine was being her usual impulsive self. Although it's strange that they never really mention any prophecies about Aviendha even in POV's among themselves. How did they know she was the one? Also, if she was the one, Sorilea wasn't in on the plan. Otherwise she wouldn't be passing off her whatever-it-is nephew to Aviendha.

Randalator @89
I thought it was one of Perrin's wolfdreams that had the dragons floating and settling on his arms. Or did he and Egwene have separate dreams about it.

FSS @94
Just seeing Alanna's answer quoted makes me see red. The nerve that woman. Her responsibility is to release something that was acquired by trickery and was never truly hers.

Planeswalker @102
Some? I can't really remember offhand a single Girls story arc that does not annoy. They all mostly get by on a combination of luck and foolhardiness, you'd think they were the ta'veren.

drewloves @106
Failure of leadership. There was a power vacuum after Couladin's death, since he and his brother were the ones slated to be tested as chiefs. That left them vulnerable to a)Sevanna's greed and machinations, and b)The Wise Ones' stubbornness in trying to prove Couladin was legit(which he never really was).
Besides, imagine yourself as a Shaido spearfighter. Other clans distrust the mere mention of you. Suddenly out comes from your clan He Who Comes With the Dawn. But there's a catch. Your He Who Comes With The Dawn has a rival. A weak and soft wetlander. Who do you support? Your HWCWTD promises riches and glory taken by force from those despicable wetlanders. The other one can only offer some garbage about once following the Way of the Leaf. As if true warriors could have such weaklings for ancestors. Never mind the other clan chiefs. It's a conspiracy to malign the Shaido once again.
This thinking of course is what kills 2 of every 3 that goes to Rhuidean. Only goes to show how prevalent this thinking is among Aiel. Also the reason why Meradin joined the Shaido. It is a form of denial combined with escapism.
After Couladin's death it was probably clan pride that kept the Shaido together. I don't think the average spearfighter realized that Sevanna's plan was to capture and break Rand Al'thor.

gagecreedlives @109
I guess from what Moiraine saw of the Dragons, she must have thought that it could be copied with the Power. Or maybe she thought the weave could be similar to the one used on the Dragon banner and was therefore neither original nor specific to the marking of Aiel chiefs. Meaning if one could figure out how the Dragon Banner was printed, you could also do the same for an Aiel chief's arm.
j p
112. sps49
Rhuarc's "there is no way to imitate the Dragons of Rhuidean" comment may have simply amused Moiraine; the girl gets around, knows the One Power, and likely knows what the word "Inconceivable!" means. :)
113. Viddles
Is it not possible that Asmodean pulled a Sammy and told Couladin it was done with an artefact from the AoL? He is in a peddler caravan, after all, and is a gleeman; he could probably have convinced a douche like Couladin that he'd found some long lost ter'angreal of awesomeness.

ASMO: "Wanna be the Car'a'carn?"
ASMO: "Okie dokie. Take this idio- er, ta'tuu box, and push the button. It'll only work on you if you really are the Car'a'carn, though...."
Coul: *presses the button*
ASMO: *channels*
Coul: *looks at his rad new metal tats*
ASMO: *surprised face* "By the Great Lord of the D- Light, it seems that you truly ARE He Who Comes At The Dawn! Go forth and tell your so-called Aiel!"
Coul: "Aiight. Say, this isn't some shadowrunner trickery, is it?"
ASMO: "By the holy taint of the beautiful and benevolent Dark One, may he live forever and wipe out mankind, I swear that it is not. Go light."
Coul: "Good enough."

I also buy the idea from Zeynep @74 that he actually entered Rhuidean and Asmo somehow tricked him into thinking he was chosen.

However reading the point where he reveals himself at Alcair Dal, it seems like he is being such an overt dcik about it that he MUST know he isn't for real. I always figured he knew for sure that he wasn't the Car'a'carn but he thought he could fool the others. I guess it is moot, though. What happened, happened, and I doubt this information will come up in aMoL. Maybe in Harriet's Encyclopedia of WoT though....

Couladin - A lucking foser who tried to lead the Aiel after being given metal tattoos by Asmodean in Rhuidean under the pretext of having been chosen as He Who Comes With The Dawn.

Asmodean - The lamest of the Forsaken, but the most likeable as a person. Killed in Caemlyn when looking for wine, by the following character who is most intuitively obvious to even the most casual observer,

114. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Asmodean - metrosexual forsaken. And you know what they say about metrosexuals...
Captain Hammer
115. Randalator
alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed @111

Egwene is the one who dreams of the settling into the skin business.

There had been a dream of Rand, reaching for a sword that seemed to be made of crystal, never seeing the fine net dropping over him. And one of him kneeling in a chamber where a parched wind blew dust across the floor, and creatures like the one on the Dragon banner, but much smaller, floated on that wind, and settled into his skin.
(TSR, ch. 25)

Perrin only sees some floating action.

Rand stood amid swirling stormwinds, laughing wildly, even madly, arms upraised, and on the winds rode small shapes, gold and scarlet, like the strange figure on the Dragon banner;
(TSR, ch. 28)

Viddles @113

That conversation is hilariously funny.
116. Freelancer

Ahh, first you invoke "Who shot JR?", and now Vizzini. The horror...

RE: Couladin's markings

Nah, I'll wait till we actually re-cap those chapters.


RJ has a point to make with all of these "frustrating" character treatments. I'll let it be until we're much further down the road, but one could do well to recall the platitude, "Hate the sin, love the sinner".
Kurt Lorey
117. Shimrod
@50 Randalator,

Frankly, I should have gotten it right away, but The Producers isn't in my top five favorite Mel Brooks movies. It did sink in late last evening.

My only excuse is that I have some real Nazi business on my mind this week, as a long time coming set of appeals ended, and the person in question was finally deported to Munich.

Sometimes, it is difficult (for me) to keep separate the entertainment blogs from political and/or historical ones.
118. BigBoy57
Too many posts to read through so sorry if these have been mentioned above but -

1. Wasn't Melaine referring to placing a bridal wreath for Aviendah at Rand's feet?

2. The maiden who referred to Mat as "Gambler" would have to have been a DF wouldn't she,seeing that as early as TEoTW Ishy was referring to Mat by that designation?
Jim Adams
119. dubjazz
Lannis @101
Hereabouts someone who shoes horses is called a farrier. Blacksmiths work making/forging metal artifacts.
Sujay Naik
120. simoquin

Anyone ever make connections between WOT and any particular music? I began reading WOT around '99 when Sting's Brand New Day was released, and was reading these chapters while listening to 'Thousand Years' and 'Desert Rose'. I associate both so strongly with WOT ( former because of the lyrics and the latter on the music). Now it's all stuck in my head - hearing either of those two songs triggers WOT in my thoughts and vice-versa.
121. birgit
the more modern concepts of on and giri (or perhaps it is giri and ninjo; I freely admit that my understanding of Japanese culture is less than stellar

on = toh, giri = duty, ninjo = human feelings (in conflict with giri)

I will make you know our blood for yours if I have to lay the—” fool girl in your blankets myself.

The Adam is a ter'angreal that works like the Black Ajah's involuntary circle.

A forsaken thinks about the a'dam as an involuntary circle as something the savages of this age discovered that was unknown in the AOL.

Hereabouts someone who shoes horses is called a farrier. Blacksmiths work making/forging metal artifacts.

Somewhere Perrin thinks that one of the reasons he became a blacksmith is that he likes to work with horses.
Michael Catapano
122. hoping
Current day farriers shoe horses with pre-made horseshoes and do hoof care. Back in the day, blacksmiths were required since all shoes were custom made. Both Perrin and Mat have farriers with their armies, in later books, for routine hoof care.
Captain Hammer
123. Randalator
Shimrod @117

You've been involved in the Demjanjuk case?

alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed @111

Just seeing Alanna's answer quoted makes me see red. The nerve that woman. Her responsibility is to release something that was acquired by trickery and was never truly hers.

Do I smell a spanking...?
124. JamesEdJones
91 Freelancer

Abso-freakin-lutely! To all of it.

Especially the revelation about Perrin.

No. Wolves.

Falcons? Um, no. Wolves

Hedgehogs? What?! No, W- Oh, whatever.
Kurt Lorey
125. Shimrod
@123 Randalator

Just emotionally.

I have long had more sympathy for Simon Wiesenthal's passion to serve justice, rather than Eva Kor's plea for forgiveness.
Lannis .
126. Lannis
Re: Moiraine's eyes flickering at mention of Dragon tattoos as impossible to copy...

I wonder if she (at one point) contemplated copying the clan chief's tattoos... she's familiar enough with the prophecies to have realized that those were the Dragons by which Rand would be marked twice. I know she's got this nice foothold on "not forcing prophecy" and "the pattern reacting badly if tried" but I wonder... she did say she would do anything...

And yes, folks, I know what that's in reference to, but just surmising as to why she reacted to the comment. Feel free to pick it apart--s'all moot, anyway (a character's small reaction to a comment, something thought that we'll never revisit), but fun to discuss. :)

dubjazz et al. re: Blacksmith joke. Granted, a poor one... but still a joke. I only have to out-think toddlers--please have patience. XD

JamesEdJones @ 124: BAHAHAhahahaha! (And you forgot the hawk! Uh, I mean wolves.)
127. toryx
Re: Moiraine's eyes flickering at mention of Dragon tattoos as impossible to copy...

I've always thought that this was her remembering one of the paths of her life from her Rhuidean experience. When Rhuarc told Rand they were impossible, one of those memories came back to life for a moment and her eyes flickered at the memory.

I could be completely wrong, but it makes as much sense as anything.
Mitchell Swan
128. mcswan

And truth to tell, he would not rest himself until only one living man bore the Dragons. By rights he should lump Asmodean in with Couladin. Asmodean had marked the Shaido. But Couladin’s unrestrained ambition had made it possible; his ambition and refusal to abide by Aiel law and custom had led inevitably to this place, this day.

Fires of Heaven
Chapter 43 This Place, This Day
129. Dreamwolf
Just a off topic question, are there not anyone more than me that have wondered why, in the age of legends, not more healing Ter'angreals was made?

The war of shadow and then the breaking took over a hundred years as I understand it. In any war booth sides would have had serious use of items that allow anyone or at least anyone capable of channeling a bit of spirit to heal both men and animals. Especially since according to RJ the talent of healing always has been one of the more scarce one.
Given that I would assume both sides being interested in making large numbers of healing Ter'angreals and many of those should have survived until the current.

Any thoughts on that?

A similiar albeit weaker argument could be done for Ter'Angerals that confessed knowledge and/or training in the use of the OP, Rhuideain is a example of that being possible and I find it a bit strange that we never even heard a hint of anything like that.

Finaly I'd like to thank Leight for both the reread and for deepening my understanding of the english language, the latter in company of , much obliged.
130. JamesEdJones
129 Dreamwolf

I believe it was Liandrin who was contemplating the why's of the talent of healing. One of the thoughts that crossed her mind was why it was so close to the ability to hurt or injure.

My reasoning is that a Terangreal made to heal might be like a scalpel from our day and age. The first attempt to examine it revealed that it was very sharp. And was thus destroyed.

A little tongue-in-cheek, but that's the way this mind works.
132. JamesEdJones
131 GatheringStorm

Not sure. It's in my head about 10% of the time. Could be anywhere between my ears. I know it doesn't need all of that space.
133. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Randalator @123
Yes. Preferrably with the Power so the warder can't interfere. BWAHAHAHAHA

Dreamwolf @129
Not sure about the War of the Power, but the Breaking took closer to three hundred, IIRC. As for Rhuidean, we must remember that it was Aes Sedai from the AOL who entrusted the ter'angreal in them to the Aiel. And it was Aes Sedai survivors of the Breaking who supervised its building.
Kevin Morgan
134. DrMorganstien
Another reason for no Healing ter'angreal is that they require some of the "strength" from the channeler(sp?), and that person decides how much each person becomes fatigued from the Healing. If it were an inanimate object it would either disintegrate on first use or everyone who gets Healed by it is instantly put in a coma for a month.

well, at least that is my uniformed estimate
135. Balance
This is one of the funniest threads you guys have done in awhile. These are some of the funnest chapters the first time through. It's reminicent of the first three books. We finally are learning about the Aiel. (very interesting on first read) We get to watch some of Mat's advencement. It's even complete with a random shadowspawn attack. Plus we get a shot as Rand al la jedi master with his sword. Tanchio is not that bad, as we get a payoff from the balefire wand fight, and Moggy vs. Ny.
I think the idea of Asmo tatin' Coul in TAR pretty good. Asmo waiting in Ruid for Coul in real life good too. I'm sure if you had a Forsaken's power you could figure out how to make it work.
Moraine shifting her eyes at the dragon tat comment is RJ foreshadowing and giving us a reason to believe the tats can be duplicated. On this point I'm curious if the raven tats the Deathwatch get are power created as well. I seem to remember that they are not easily duplicated with ink.

and, of course, thank you Leigh.
136. Cowboy Funk
I think Moiraines eyes flickered when mentioned of dragon tattoos because the Wise Ones probably all get little cherry tattoos on their bums when they come out of Rhuidien...I thought that was obvious.

The whole Seanchan thing, I thought that the land was being controlled by random power hungry Aes Sedei to begin with and when Luthair and co. came over they binded the nations together and started using the a'dam to set shit straight since the land had been ravaged by AS using the power for their own motives and goals since no White Tower was bearing over them. Also I never knew they had/have their own version of the "blight" there. This is interesting. Obviously the Shadow is present in Seanchan as we see darkfriend Seanchan (i.e. Suroth) so they had to swear their oaths to someone over there. And obviously the Forsaken know about Seanchan and in some cases take an active role in manipulating events over there (i.e. slaughter of Imp fam) but i never though they had a Blight and all that jazz...interesting. Could make for the post "mat/tuon" adventures" to be interesting if they ever do materialize.

We may be way off on another tangent already but I just wanted to add my 2 cents...cheers.
137. Tony Zbaraschuk
I suspect that Healing requires too much reactive control for ter'angreal -- they're programmed to do something, but can't change their programming, and so they'd end up doing something obnoxious to the patient instead of curing him the way a Healer who's seeing the situation can. (An alternative is that Healing ter'angreal were so useful that they were all used frequently, and therefore lost and/or broken, long ago.

One of the things that Jordan manages, again and again, is showing how vast the power of the Forsaken to cause destruction is, how much devastation they can unleash with a casual plan that requires little effort on their part. Asmodean marks Couladin, probably to give himself a fifteen- or 20-minute head start when he goes to Rhuidean, and winds up unleashing a war that destroys Caerhien and has consequences lasting for half a dozen books so far. Later, Sammael will do something similar with the Shaido, scattering them across a continent in a matter of hours (and doubtless leading to massive destruction everywhere).
(What is it about the Shaido that makes them vulnerable to these sorts of ploys, anyway?)

The Tanchico scene is pretty awesome, particularly with Nynaeve being the take-charge person she is at this point. (She hasn't yet suffered her crisis of self-confidence in tFH). Not as awesome as the climax chapter there, of course, but pretty impressive. And everyone arriving at once with the clues was very funny.

The Wise Ones, I think, know that spying on Rand's dreams is dishonorable, but they're stuck between a rock and a hard place. If they _don't_ find out everything they can their people are going to die. That pressure has been known to lead people to make less-than-optimal decisions in various ways.
(And one of the very big ironies is that the Shaido are probably going to be the "remnant of a remnant" that survives... as of the current books, Galina's group is the only one heading _back_ to the Threefold Land.)
James Jones
138. jamesedjones
137 Tony

Very nice thread. Everything spun out nicely without the usual "here's what was never implied but could have happened" that has been so scattered throughout all of the posts. Thank you for the reasoning.

I do have to admit, though, the "could have happened" posts are a guilty pleasure of mine. Viddles had me snickering for hours. Please keep 'em comming.
Captain Hammer
139. Randalator
re: Healing ter'angreal

I think Healing especially AoL-style Healing is by far too complicated and patient-centric to be automated.

In present-day Randland till Nynaeve took the stage Aes Sedai used a very crude (by AoL standards) one-size-fits-all type of Healing. And even post-Nynaeve the Healing is still rather standardized and takes most of the required strength out of the patient instead of the True Source.

AoL Healing took no strength out of the patient at all and could even Heal scars/old wounds which isn't possible for Aes Sedai today. It seems to have had much more sophisticated and specialized weaves for specific patients, injuries and diseases. Just like Delving a pregnant woman tells you nothing about the state of the child but Caressing the Child gives a complete everything about the pregnancy right down to the sex(es) of the children. If there are specific diagnostic weaves there have to be specific Healing weaves as well.

Following that assumption Healing ter'angreal would have to check the patient and his current condition (injuries, diseases, foreign objects still embedded in the wound e.g. trolloc arrow in side, etc.) and then apply the appropriate weave(s) in the required strength. I guess that would have been much too complicated to be rolled up into an automated process.
140. Freelancer

Well played!

Lannis@126 & toryx@127

I too believe that Moiraine's eye flicker is triggered by a Rhuidean induced bit of information. The only clear connection to be inferred is that in one or some of the futures she experienced, she copied Rhuarc's markings onto both of Rand's arms.

And yes, that she said she would do anything to help the Dragon defeat the DO is critical in this context. She does reveal that she considered bedding Rand to gain more trust/influence with him, but the Rhuidean rings showed her nothing but disaster in that path.


Good quote pull, that will settle a few of the hanging questions.


I have possible answer for you, but you won't like it. In the AOL, saidin/saidar were more prevalent, to the point that there were the "standing flows". It would make some sense that if healing ter'angreal were created, they would have been formed to employ these standing flows, so that no channeler would be required to operate them.

If this hypothesis were true, how many of the ter'angreal in the Tower, or the Great Holding, or in Rhuidean, are actually healing devices, but cannot work because the True Source has weakened, and therefore cannot be identified with their original function? Just a theory.

Tony Zbaraschuk@137

(What is it about the Shaido that makes them vulnerable to these sorts of ploys, anyway?)

Ahh! The quintessential question regarding all of the people in this saga. The question of character. In the case of the Shaido, it is clearly established that they have little ji compared to the rest of the Aiel populace. It is well stated;
You can't cheat an honest man.
Anytime a person or group sacrifices their character (conscience, honesty, integrity, etc) in favor of personal gain or ambition, they are vulnerable to ANY temptation that purports to help in that regard.
141. Freelancer
Or you could go with Randalator's wild, loony, unfounded healing ter'angreal theory up there @139. ::hides::
Kurt Lorey
142. Shimrod
IIRC, some Forsaken sniffed that the "Healing" in the 3rd Age was but a remnant of battlefield first aid remembered loosely from the War of Power.
143. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Tony Zbaraschuk @137
No way the Wise Ones would consider watching the dream spying. Because then they would have toh to Rand. And they certainly don't act like they do. Not even when caught.
Captain Hammer
144. Randalator
Freelancer @141

Or you could go with Randalator's wild, loony, unfounded healing ter'angreal theory up there @139. ::hides::

Actually that's a wild, loony, unfounded "no healing ter'angreal theory", thank you very much. *wink*

But it's not all that unfounded, all the facts are right there in the books: different diagnostic weaves (Delving vs. Caressing the Child), different Healing weaves (AoL Healing vs. Third Age Healing), the significance of strength used in Healing (Samitsu Healing Dobraine) and the very variation-free workings of ter'angreal (as long as they are not manipulated from outside).

So my conclusion is still speculative but it's based on solid facts...

In the AOL, saidin/saidar were more prevalent, to the point that there were the "standing flows". It would make some sense that if healing ter'angreal were created, they would have been formed to employ these standing flows, so that no channeler would be required to operate them.

If this hypothesis were true, how many of the ter'angreal in the Tower, or the Great Holding, or in Rhuidean, are actually healing devices, but cannot work because the True Source has weakened, and therefore cannot be identified with their original function? Just a theory.

That "True Source weakening" is quite a stretch. We have no evidence whatsoever from the Forsaken, that something is wrong with the True Source. There would have been comment if the True Source were weaker than in the AoL.

These "standing flows" were most likely just a world-wide power grid that ter'agreal could tap into which of course was destroyed in the Breaking. Something akin to a wireless electricity grid. And anyway, standing flows just allowed non-channelers to use ter'angreal that required channeling. So any Healing ter'angreal could still be operated by any channeler without the standing flows.

Embracing the Source, she touched that pattern with hair-thin flows of Fire and Earth at two of the interconnections. That would not have been necessary in the Age of Legends, but something called the “standing flows” no longer existed. A world where almost any ter’angreal could be used by people unable to channel seemed odd beyond comprehension. Why had it been allowed?
(CoT, ch. 21)

Note that the ter'angreal still works without standing flows. It just requires active channeling where it wouldn't have in the AoL..
145. Freelancer
Yeah, my whole sarcastic point of 141 was that yours was much more sound than mine. Your posit of the standing flows as a broken "Power grid" makes sense, but for now I'll hold to the concept that there is simply less Power available, that while channelers can still tap the Source up to and beyond their personal capacity says nothing about the global quantity and concentration available.

However, given that there are so many ter'angreal, the proper use of which cannot be determined, I leave the door open to the possibility that some ter'angreal might have been made that could only be worked by the standing flows, that a live channeler is somehow different enough to prevent proper operation.

This is the kind of can we open when asking a question that cannot be answered from within the text. But, since so many people love the contents of these cans...
Sydo Zandstra
146. Fiddler
Re: Alanna bonding Rand as a Warder.

I think Alanna is mainly serving the overall plot, as a homing beacon for Rand.

Alanna could track Rand, when he was abducted by Elaida's emissary, and (I seem to recall) when he was being held in prison in Far Madding.

Also, I have a suspicion that Alanna won't release Rand (the reasons why Rand didn't elate on who his other bondees are were stated somewhere above), and that Rand will go Warder Crazy when Alanna's killed during the Last Battle, in AMOL.

And (maybe) then we will see the Aiel singing again, to try and soothe Rand, and they will be destroyed by him. (Just like when we saw them do during's Rand's trip in the glass columns)

Just a thought...
Lannis .
147. Lannis
Fiddler @ 146: Yeah... Alanna sure looks like cannon fodder... at least, I hope she does--Light, please let her be! She's a frakking emo whackjob!
j p
148. sps49
Healing ter'angreal:

There are many; their function is simply not always recognized. Some from Sweden resemble stainless steel salt shakers and will be used in our future to diagnose and treat injuries in outer space.

I crack me up!
149. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Fiddler @146
Yes, Alanna was able to track Rand but then again, Perrin already had several wolfpacks on the scent. And their little party of 9 self-serving sisters really did not add much to the strength that Perrin had already gathered. All they did was get in the way as a matter of fact.

As for tracking Rand to Far Madding, it was that series of blunders in LoC that lead Rand losing trust in all Aes Sedai in the first place. Including the ones sworn to him. Most of whom have their own interpretations of their oaths anyway that diverge from Rand's own interpretation. Or did you seriously think Rand would run if he could trust his retainers to watch his back? Granted getting caught was stupid on Rand's part, but Alanna had absolutely nothing to do with springing him.

Re: healing ter'angreal
The only one I'm familiar with is a crystal in the Philippines that is usually used for skin whitening but can also be used for general healing using the appropriate weave.
Andrew Lovsness
150. drewlovs
I've often wondered why Asmo didn't go to Rhuidean to "look around" until Rand was hot on his tail. Yeah, yeah...he wasn't sure if what he was looking for was there, but still.

The conclusion I came to was, Lanfear was making SURE he didn't have the time. Anyone else have as good a reason?

If this is the case, Couladin could not have gone to Rhuidean with Asmo sneaking/hiding/tagging along; there just isn't a good reason for Asmo to do the dragon tattoos and then leave Rhuidean unexplored.

Well, in my mind there isn't...
151. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
drewlovs @150
Maybe the wards around Rhuidean were set to stay active until HWCWTD was proclaimed.
Kurt Lorey
152. Shimrod
Is it just me, or is there a definite trend towards hating on strong, independent female characters here (and not by the men)? Who is next? Cadsuane?
j p
153. sps49
I don't hate the Supergirls, but some of their antics annoy me. And their dealings with Mat ring true, and detract from my wanting to like them.

Cadsuane is just Moiraine with gray hair, to me. Too full of herself, too condescending, too close with her own knowledge and skills (like all the Aes Sedai). Slapping Rand for using balefire? Alright, teach him an alternative to use against darkhounds, Forsaken, etc. That slap was not called for. Yeesh.
154. wsean
No way, Cadsuane rules!


I think you may be confusing hating on Nynaeve and Elayne with hating on independent females in general. Nynaeve and Elayne get hated on mostly because of how they treat other characters that we like (Mat, Thom, Juilin, etc). But there are plenty of independent females who are well-liked. Min, Aviendha, Birgitte, Moiraine, Siuan, Egwene, Tuon, Verin, and plenty more if you include the more minor WO/AS characters.
155. Spook
The exploding pattern issue: Does Moiraine mean Rand loosing Tarmon'Gaidon if he tries to force the prophecies too much?
If anyone can, the dark one could explode the pattern.
Alice Arneson
156. Wetlandernw
152,153, 154

If you had the patience, time and intestinal fortitude to go back through the last four months worth of posts, you would find lots of different people loving and hating different characters. As near as I can tell, Lan, Loial & Rhuarc are the only characters that come close to universal approval. Everyone else has their fans and... what do you call 'em, anti-fans? I think the girls especially engender fairly strong reactions from the readers, but there's both love and hate in those reactions. And while there are a few who love to hate all of the "supergirls", there are far more who get irritated with certain of their actions but generally like or accept the characters as they are.

For myself, I generally like most of the women, some more than others, and there are only a few that really make me want to spit tacks. And almost all of them deserve a slap upside the head once in a while. But then that's true of most real-life women I know, myself included.
Kurt Lorey
157. Shimrod
No. I have a distinct impression of waves of "I hate XX" waxing and waning in cojunction with the chapter PoVs.

Faile, Egwene, Nynaeve, Suian (yes, Suian), Alanna, Morgase, Elaida, Else, Elayne, Egeanin, and that doesn't even count the women we haven't "met" yet, the BA or Forsaken women.

So, of the main PoV women, all have haters. The secondaries, accepting your premise, we have Min and Moiraine as "liked".

We have to progress one more level further down before the likers seem to outweigh the haters.

I'll try to keep an eye on this as we meet more strong female characters, but I don't think I'm way off here.
AJ MacPherson
158. Mackey62
I don't understand the whole Loial universal approval. He has had his great moments (how can you be against saving the children, just ask any politican), but a lot of the time he seems like the annoying little brother. You can't say that to AS, don't do that, Mom said not to play ball in the house, let me go with b/c I have to write my book.

Lan and Rhurac, yeah they are Bad Ass, but the do present a cautionary tale of threesomes that work, Rhurac, and threesomes that don't, Lan, Mo and Ny. Cat fight!! Whoo hoo!

Just kidding about Loial.
Kurt Lorey
159. Shimrod
Notation made. Set up "reminder" schedule for Wetlandernw. Buy more tacks. Buckets and buckets.
Ofer Nave
160. odigity
Yes, Cadsuane is next. That woman is horrible. Not at all like Moiraine.
161. wsean
Faile, yeah. Can't leave her out; she's probably the most hated on character in the books. But she's not even a main character. And remember that some characters (i.e. Siuan) get criticized mostly for making bad decisions--that doesn't mean people hate them.

Out of all the characters you listed, I've only seen Nynaeve, Elayne, and Faile get consistently hated on.

As for Elaida... sure she's hated, but it seemed like Gawyn actually got more hate than she did in the Tower coup comment section.

Even Lan has people who dislike him. So I'd say the list is Loial, Rhuarc... and Verin. :)
Alice Arneson
162. Wetlandernw
You'll note I very carefully said "come close to universal approval"... I'm learning to hedge with the best of 'em!

You may be right that there are more who hate than those who love the main women, but I won't concede yet that it's overwhelming.

Oh, and next time Berelain or Sevanna shows up, don't bother with buying tacks. Just give me a handful of nails and I'll give you the tacks - by the bucketful.
Captain Hammer
163. Randalator
wsean @154

No way, Cadsuane rules!

Yeah, she rules in an arrogant, condescending, god-I-hate-that-stupid-know-it-all-bitch kind of way.

She totally rocks badassery-wise but, ugh...her, she's annoying. She is the best and the worst of all Aes Sedai since the Breaking all rolled into one.

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's "Amalgamation Aes Sedai"...!

Wetlandernw @162

Oh, and next time Berelain or Sevanna shows up, don't bother with buying tacks. Just give me a handful of nails and I'll give you the tacks - by the bucketful.

Actually, the next time we see Berelain it is in Cairhien and she totally rocks everyone's socks off there...
164. Freelancer
Find me someone posting on here that dares to hate on Aan'allein.

- Even the Aiel who came to serve justice on Laman Damodred showed respect to him, while he was an enemy battle leader
- He silently and stoicly put up with a week of Moiraine's Power-wrought shenanigans before he was her warder
- He trained Rand, not simply in the sword, but to stand up as a man, even in the presence of the Amyrlin Seat
- The first time Rand properly stood up to Moiraine, his response was "Tai'shar Manetheren", risking insult to his Aes Sedai to mark honor to the Dragon Reborn for taking up that "mountain"
- He made Nynaeve GIGGLE, for Light's sake!
165. RobMRobM
@161 and earlier: my near-universal love list to this point in the books: Loial, Rhuarc, Verin (!!), Tam and Abell, Elyas, Min (!!), Amys, and Gaul. I'm predicting good things later for Mat (from mid-TFOH on) Tuon, Seluccia, and Egwene (from Amyrlin on), Talmanes, and Karede, among others. Definitely some strong women in there. Rob
166. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
What's wrong with Berelain? I like Berelain.

Cadsuane is horrid though. There's a distinct echo of a generation gap in her dealings with everybody else. She's overrated to me, and yet, some of her actions have made her integral to the plot simply because Rand is slowly losing it. Again, in no small part to the actions of the other women, particularly Aes Sedai, around him. She says that Rand keeps accumulating debts to her, yet they are ants to the elephants of debts that the Aes Sedai as a body owe him. At least Moiraine got more sympathetic before her detour through Finnland. I don't see Cadsuane unbending long enough.
Alice Arneson
167. Wetlandernw
164. Freelancer

Thank you. Lan is my hero.
Kurt Lorey
168. Shimrod
@162 Wetlandernw said:

"...but I won't concede yet that it's overwhelming."

Yeah, yeah. I don't discard my pet biases and theories easily either. So, I completely understand your reluctance.
Alice Arneson
169. Wetlandernw
alreadymad @166

What's wrong with Berelain? I like Berelain.

That's 'cause you're... well, just look at your handle. You said it, not me!

But seriously. Don't get me started on Berelain just yet. There is a stretch in Cairhien when she's pretty cool, when she's actually doing her job, and I started to like her after all. Then Perrin came back on the scene and it all went down the big swirly again. Gah. I don't even like thinking about that part. And now I shall plug my ears and dance about going 'tra-la-la' every time I see her name until we actually meet her in the reread. I am NOT going there again yet. Talk about needing intestinal fortitude!
AJ MacPherson
170. Mackey62
Why the hating on Cadsuane? She treats Rand just like he wants to be treated, as a person, not a lord, chief, king or a mad man. She one of the only ones honest with him that her only goal is for him to make the last battle. His feelings, arogance, etc., knock that crap off. You are a 20 year old, self absorbed punk. Laugh a little, have a little hanky panky, Live a life worth fighting for, not just b/c you are the Dragon Reborn. Be human. That is a horrible thing to want out of the "hero".

Plus, she old as dirt. Why would she put up with anything, especially Rand, the ultimate emo. All the talk about about nobody talking and trusting other characters, we get one who appears that way and is badass, and we hate on her? Shame, shame.
Richard Fife
171. R.Fife
Actually, recent studied have shown that present topsoil is made up of Cad's shed skin from her novice days that has mixed with the ground to provide a withering, harsh, unusable soil.

Therefore, Cadsuane is older than dirt.

And she's a cranky old woman who hasn't had the proper attention of a man for far too long. (ducks)
173. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Her position as adviser has been overrated, so far. I still don't understand her place in the plot aside from getting a respectable Aes Sedai at his side. The only use she has had thus far was organizing the defense at the cleansing. And this was because Rand's paranoia got to him, said paranoia being a side effect of Aes Sedai unreliability in the first place. Besides, she got Eben Hopwil killed by putting Daigian in charge of the circle. What would a Yellow know of battle? If Eben had been leading the circle it could have been Aran'gar's body they'd buried. She even admitted to blackmailing Flinn etal into accepting Warder bonds. For no better reason than that she wanted them under her and her sisters' control.
And as for treating Rand the way he wanted, Rand wanted to be treated as a man. Not as an itinerant boy.
174. Freelancer

Easy, now. No fair giving yourself a stroke, I'll feel much more alone in posting for the minority viewpoint without you.

The First of Mayene (to avoid naming her) is a boorish wench. Getting what she wants is more important to her than modesty. Only when she's afraid for her life(first bubble of evil), or pressed with a duty she cannot shirk, does she ever take her eyes off whatever she has decided is the goal of her basest appetite.

I suppose there are enough readers who enjoy the idea of a female who won't take no for an answer from a guy, but to use one of Leigh's common arguments, turning the tables on an traditionally one-sided wrong behavior doesn't suddenly make it more acceptable. Unless one's sense of morality doesn't exceed that of the males on Friends. Or the females, come to think of it.
Richard Fife
175. R.Fife
You had me in stitches. Touché
176. alreadymadwhenBerelain'sdressfelloff
I liked the Berelain in Cairhien arc. It was fun watching Perrin and Faile light up like fireworks. She's a confident go-getter who still manages to get the work done. And a devious, very formidable mind underneath those scandalous clothes and flirtatious behavior.

As for Cadsuane, she's one to talk about taking arrogant people down a notch. The pot calling the kettle black? He (or she) who is innocent cast the first stone.
Lannis .
177. Lannis
Shimrod @ 152: re: hating "strong, independent female characters..."

Nah, don't like Alanna (emo whackjob, as stated above), or Faile (for her treatment of Perrin). Nynaeve and Elayne sometimes drive me crazy, but there are aspects of their story lines I love, too--and even Faile, I don't mind at the end of tSR. But Alanna just makes me nuts--ARGH!

To be fair, there's some male characters that make me go ::headdesk:: too... Fain (ew), Tallanvor (just talk to her, doughhead), Domon (just don't like him), and Beslan (more crazy, in a drunken frat boy kind of way)... there's more... but my memory needs jogging right now.

I guess I'm saying it's not just hating on the girls. And really, we're back to the whole "RJ did his job well" when we're finding ourselves with beefs with believable characters, and not beefs with the writing involved (say, a one dimensional, archetypal cast?).

Re: Berelain... I totally agree with Wetlander @ 169!

Oh, and I ? Cadsuane! :)

And Verin! :)

170, 171 & 172: BAHAHAHAHahahaha!
Lannis .
178. Lannis
alreadymad @ 176: Just read your (ahem) new handle. BAHAHAHahhahaha!
Amar Ramraj
179. aiel1219
Hey peeps. I'm Back!!! I was finally able to get a dang powersupply for mylaptop, n the buttons on that touch screen kbd on my phone r too small to type with.

NEways. Was just wondering. Why didn't the Shaido wise ones never say anything about Couldain's claims at being HWCWtD? There was no clan chief to say "Hey u lil bugger, u didn't go to Ruhidean!", so shouldn't the Shaido WO have said summn? And has anyone thought that mb the Shaido will be the remnant of the remnant? Since they will be headed back to the waste and all other Aiel are headed to TG?? How much wud dat suck???
180. RobMRobM
wetlander @172. While intriguing, that would never work as Green and Yellow Ajahs don't get along, LOL.

181. Freelancer

RobMRobM scores from downtown! Poor R.Fife, one day in a shawl, an eternity as a target.


Hey, missed that cute lil' icon. Never fear, if there's one thing Shaido are good at, it's getting themselves in trouble. I'll admit that Therava is, at least, planning to do the right thing, and get outta the wetlands, but I just don't see them getting there safely. And, since they don't follow the Car'a'carn, they won't be around for him to protect. There must be a parallel between the original agreement of Rhuidean, that only those chiefs who accept the Jenn's demand and go through the crystal forest will save their clans.
Alice Arneson
182. Wetlandernw
You people crack me up. Thanks - I needed a good laugh tonight!

aiel1219 - been wondering where you'd got to. Welcome back.

A couple people have mentioned it, but I just CAN'T buy the Shaido as the remnant of a remnant. There would be no poetic justice in that AT ALL. Note that I have no textual evidence whatsoever, pointing in any direction. Just that I will be VERY disappointed if that's it. I want them all to DIAF. Or at least go wander off and get completely lost and humbled and shoot their own feet and have lots of icky stuff happen to them. Besides, Melaine's babies have to survive and be part of the next Age. So there.
Roger Powell
183. forkroot
I'm willing to cut Cadsuane some slack in light of her "lifetime achievements". She might be brusque, but she's been on the side of the good guys (not BA, not rogue-red) for a long, long time.

She's able enough to have brought a number of false dragons to heel, while being smart enough to recognize the real one.

She was even bright enough to figure out what Moraine and Suian were up to, although she's a touch harsh in her judgment of their performance.

For nearly universally loved characters: Don't forget Dobraine and Bran al'Ver. And what about Thom? Anyone dislike him?

Agreed about Alanna. What Rand should have done was balefire the crap out of her right after she involuntarily bonded him. Enough balefire should erase back before the bond and avoid any effects of her death.
184. Grinwell
Did you guys see The Gathering Storm cover art now posted at Brandon Sanderson's site?

Oooh, one-handed Rand!

Is that Elayne gaping at him?

Elayne: Hey Rand, could you try not using the Power every time you wanna go outside. I mean, I kinda like having a door on our house.
Rand: Mutter, mutter...Ilyena!...mutter, curse...storm coming...kill them all...
Elayne: Um, okay honey, I'll just be in the kitchen if you need anything.
185. Branwhin
Hmm. Re. the cover art:

First, thanks for posting it, whether or no it has to do with the current reading ... whatever, just gimme all the WoT there is!!!

I actually like that. The woman ... not sure. White blouse and bulky brown skirts, light hair, I'd say Aiel. Not sure about the amount of bosom displayed though! I thought only Sevanna went that far overboard, and she as I recall tends to wear more bling than Mr. T whenever possible. To say nothing of having been caught by the Seanchan (heh, heh).

Rand ... poor fellow. I just want to hug both of him.

186. tamyrlink
wetlander @ 172

robmrobm @ 180

Daigian is White Ajah, but still, all Aes Sedai know about battles, its just that Greens make it their specialty. (Think Mo in TEotW, and well just think Mo period, Teslyn in KoD, and when the Aes Sedai attacked the raken at the bowl of the winds). Cadsuane only had her in charge cuz she's one of the few sisters she trusts, plus she has years on beldeine at being Aes Sedai. But still, considering that Flinn drove of Demandred with Sarene and Corele and he lead that circle, perhaps Cadsuane should have let Eben lead, since him and Flinn trained together.

sigh. you know what they say about hindsight.
187. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Wetlandernw @182
He shall spill out the blood of those who calls themselves Aiel as water on sand, and he shall break them as dried twigs, yet the remnant of a remnant he shall save, and they shall live.
Not quite conclusive but it at least implies that the "remnant of a remnant" will be of the faction associated with him. Although to be fair I'm beginning to suspect that the Meradin will play a part in saving the Aiel as well. Just think about it, able-bodied males electing to live out the rest of their lives in peace? Can anybody say genepool?

forkroot @183
I wouldn't actually go so far as to balefire Alanna. I'd torture her Warder though. Systematically break the bones in his body one by one with The Power until she released the bond.

Branwhin @185
At least the Dragon is now closer to what I imagined it would be. As opposed to its appearance in ACoS.

tamyrlink @186
I stand corrected. I thought she was Yellow. Her being White makes it even worse. The infuriating thing is that Cadsuane never realizes her error in appointing Daigian to lead that circle. Far Madding bred to the core, she never realizes what a difference the Asha'man training makes in Power assisted battles.
188. Valan
My personal infallibly awesome character list includes: Lan, Mat, Min, Rhuarc, Amys, um... Bela and MORIDIN (the most completely awesome bad-guy, you know there's gotta be some craziness involving him Moggy and CrazyBitch in AMOL)
I don't really know what the deal is with the Fain bashers, he's a pretty damn good psycho %90 of the time.

And a complete tangent:
Remember when Nynaeve breaks the block? how all that water rushes up and she sort-of-flys to the surface? Why why WHY don't the aes Sedai pull the same trick and walk around the bottom of the Ocean which no doubt contains entire cities of the Age of Legends and angreal, ter'angreal, cuidellar, etc.? no 3rd Age archaelogist Ajah i guess...

Wait that's just like freakin Waterworld isn't it?... ugh
Lannis .
189. Lannis
Valan @ 188: re: Fain... I think you hit the nail on the head--I might just love to hate him.

Wait... nope... he's annoying, too. I just hate him. Whoops.
190. Valan
@ Lannis 189
LMAO! you really had me goin though

By the way when you see the cover: insert these captions and it makes total sense.

Aviendha: Rand you know its been like since the Fires of Heaven that we’ve actually had..
Rand: *interupts* Dammit Ilyena i asked for Salmon!!! Salmon you bloody barmaid!!
j p
191. sps49
I respect Cadsuane, I just don't like her. That typical Aes Sedai "do what I say and don't question me, you mushrooms" attitude- ugh!

Gawyn got more discussion because his actions were bad, m'kay?, but we are supposed to like him, so it gets a response. Elaida acts according to her character's super cluelessness; we expect little better form her. I nominate Elaida as Universally Hated, any seconds? Any opposed?

TGS cover- not as bad as some, but still with the typical DKS misproportioned people he's done for the past 30+ years.
192. Valan
I second sps49's Elaida proposal. I also add to that list Child Byar, Liandrin, and Sevanna.
Lannis .
193. Lannis
@ 191 & 192: re: Elaida as Universally Hated...

And... motion passed. Next? ;)
194. RobMRobM
forkroot @183 (great name, by the way)

Dobraine - agreed (and still waiting for the eventual connection with his sister/daughter Breanne who's hanging with Langwin and Perrin).

Actually, now that I think of it, Langwin qualifies.

Thom - too much criticism over being downgraded to wimp mode in his travels with the Supergirls to be universally loved, even though he is pretty cool still.

Bran - Don't think he does enough cool things to qualify -- but I probably should have included his wife (Marin), who has guts enough to keep the news of two AS living nearby from her own husband and keeps a straight face in the Perrin, Faile, Aiel, Loial onslaught earlier in Book 4. She's pretty darn cool.

@184, 185 - very funny lines re Elayne but my money's on Avi. That doesn't look like a Queen's dress to me. Also, what's up with the hole blown through the house behind him? Where the heck is he and what is he doing there?

Tam @186 - I was following up on Wetlander's joke about RFife helping Cadsuane "get some," not the serious point someone else made about Daighan and the cleansing battle. Your point is valid, though.

@188 - Bela yes! (and the hidden Darkfriend piece makes her/him even cooler) Fain no, no, no!!! Moridin he may be a yes after all. Have to save that thought for when we have the coolness discussion at the end of the books again. Hmmmmm.

195. alreadymadwhensaidinwascleansed
Valan @188
Because it had nothing to do with the Power. The only thing she did with Saidar was break the ship's pieces apart so she could get out. She did not have enough strength do anything else and the event described was actually Nynaeve in the process of drowning. Good thing Lan found her.
196. RobMRobM
@192. Let's see...Galina; Katherine; Suroth; 95% if the Athen Miere.... But they all come later. R
j p
197. sps49
Valan @192- good choices. I see a Blindly Evil trend here....
Greg Bloom
198. MuleHeadedLummox
@192 Valan
Child Byar actually does something right (finally) in KoD when he supports Galad in overthrowing Valda, but I agree that he's a pretty hateable character up to that point.

As to Berelain, as was discussed earlier she was cool in Cairhien up to the point that Perrin showed up, and again in CoT and KoD once Faile is kidnapped. Which begs the question of whether she changes her attitude around Perrin (i.e. no longer actively pursuing him) because everyone thinks they slept together or because she is more concerned with her competition with Faile than in actually getting together with Perrin.
199. alreadymadwhenBerelaintrespassedinthenight
That's too many maybes. Berelain simply has her head screwed on right when it gets down to business. Unlike other girls who do great with hanky panky and mess up when it comes to business. That's why I like her.
200. Valan
i'd have to agree Berlain is a likeable character once we get to Cairhein. Her... thing... with the Aiel is just to cool not to. i just have a hard time not liking soomebody if Rhuarc does. If she'd actually wanted Perrin for anything other than winning her standing catfight with Faile, I'd tell Perrin to drop his wife back on Tenobia in a heartbeat.
@ 198, yeah I kind of forgot about that, my bad. But he's still a bloody Whitecloak. Galad's the only one that's broken the line between tCotL and coolness IIRC.

Also to add to the list of universally cool (or at least likeable):
Herid Fel
Kevin Morgan
201. DrMorganstien
@199 Mr. AlreadymadwhenItriedtoremembermyname
(Just a joke, your names changes are hilarious)
Berelain doesn't always have her head screwed on right when it comes down to business. When several people of her party were kidnapped and killed her first thing to do was make everyone think Perrin cheated on his wife. I have no idea how that was a good idea for anyone, even she gets no benefit from it.

I also assume everyone loves Logain, Damer Flinn, and Leane Shariff 'cause I sure as hell do.

As for TGS cover art, I am wondering why the hell someone blew a hole in the door and there are no enemies in sight. Is it madness? Lews Therin? Bela? Actual enemies? Narg?

No, at this point if Rand, or we, saw that last one it would be all excitement and nostalgia.
Chris Hall
202. bookwormchris
How can you like a LEGEND? Respect Cadsuane, perhaps. Worship her, quite likely. Like her? Are you mad?

((My books are here, but they must be off to the library soon to be judged. Must. Fight. Urge. To. Read.

Some slight usage to follow the reread along, perhaps.))
203. alreadymadwhenBerelainwentallout
DrMorgenstien @201
Err no. The first thing she did was offer a truce to Perrin so they could get down to business. No more fun and games. Since Perrin's manners went south along with his wife, that didn't go over well.
Can you blame the girl for getting back at him using her preferred weapons? Intrigue, boys, not those ... things. He decided to ignore the matter, so she did the same. Simply tit for tat, really.
In her defense she did go all out helping to manage Masema and getting the tools Perrin would use to rescue Faile. Those were her boys that got the Seanchan license that Perrin would use on Tylee. Two good thieftakers who were already mentioned in the aftermath of Dumai's Wells, where they were instrumental in digging out Colavaere's crimes. They'll never see Mayene again for taking that letter.

Re: the name
We aim to please :)
Amar Ramraj
204. aiel1219
My cover interpretation:
Aviendha has finally caught up with Rand in TGS and them 2 was tryin to make babies in da house. Then a Seanchan flyin thingy with a Damane flyin side car busted things up. Rand pulls his clothes on n runs out shakin his fist at da Seanchan flying thingy for interupting his quality time n Aviendha is just gettin outta da house after arranging her hair.

EDIT: just a question that I'd like to ask the guy who did da cover art: What da heck's with the purple cumberband and why isn't Rand wearing the dragon belt buckle Aviendha gave him and aren't those dragon tattoos supposed to be golden?? (ok that was 3 questions)

I know, I know. The questions won't get answered... but still, mb one of the WoT bigwigs will read my post and ask the cover dude to make some changes.
Ofer Nave
205. odigity
Thanks for posting the cover art. Seeing that they've maintained the consistency of terrible that we've come to know and hate is a good sign.

Most misnamed. Artist. Ever.
Roger Powell
206. forkroot
I'm still laughing!


forkroot @183 (great name, by the way)

Dobraine - agreed (and still waiting for the eventual connection with his sister/daughter Breanne who's hanging with Langwin and Perrin).

Actually, now that I think of it, Langwin qualifies.

Ah shucks - (blushes) - thanks for the compliment.

Good call on Langwin and I'd add Basel Gill.

The more I think of it, there are dozens of minor characters who are pretty likable. For example, how about Petra the strong man in Valan Luca's circus?

You can find likable characters almost anywhere except Shayol Ghul ... and the White Tower.
Roger Powell
207. forkroot
Hmmm - I guess there are likable characters in the White Tower too (Laras?) - just not Aes Sedai.

I kinda liked Hammar, especially when he backed Mat. Too bad about him ....
208. Tony Zbaraschuk
Moiraine's little flicker of the eyes at hearing "There is no way to imitate the Dragons of Rhuidean" may be a remnant of her trip through the rings, but it might also mean that she knows something from the Tower that the Aiel don't. For instance, I can totally imagine someone in the Tower knowing a weave to create tattooes.
Antoni Ivanov
209. tonka
Or maybe Rand did really imagine it , and that little flicker means nothing .

likable characters in the White Tower : Pevara and all her friends from the Black Ajah Hunters. I like them. Lately I find Tarna (the new keeper) likable too in a way.
Michael Catapano
210. hoping
caption for the book cover

Rand, you have much toh to the horse for trying to teach her to channel. Look at the door!

*ala Marlon Brando in 'Streetcar'*
Damn You

Kurt Lorey
211. Shimrod
Oho! Let the backtracking begin. I have a very good example of this in the current news, but will try not to bring politics over here.

Easy to like characters you see for a couple of lines (or pages), but...I believe I have struck a nerve, or caught someones with their hands in the cookie jar.

Me? No, I'm not getting a cookie, Mom (clink, clink).
Michael Catapano
212. hoping
Re healing ter'angreal

I like this idea and there is some support for it in the books. It is stronly implied that Elayne found an orgasminator in the Ebou Dar cache. This represents a form of healing.
We know that she is reluctant to give it up.

So, the AOLers knew how to affect biological systems with a ter'angreal.They could probably do it with other forms of healing. It's a small jump to posit standing waves for the non-channelers to use it as well.
Probably still could not cure the common cold.

(I hope these links work. My first time.)

edit I guess they didn't work. sorry
213. alreadymadwhenLanfearwentnuts
You forgot the tag.
You can just click the bbCode link and it'll show you how.
Don't worry. There's still cut and paste.
Amar Ramraj
214. aiel1219
at the guy trying to post the link

u put xt to appear on comment i] in the 1st set of square brackets u put url=http://whateverthelinkis then in the 2nd set /url.
hope that helped.
Just incasee it didn't:
For a set of bbcode tags u can click here
John Massey
215. subwoofer
as alreadymadwhenthegavemedecaf has stated- dude- you forgot the open bracket-url=whatever http]-insert catch phrase here openbracket-/url] stuff. And if you post a youtube link, it usually won't let you do it from your favorites or if you are logged on. Malformed url pops up.
Was thinking last night about Asmo- Mr. was a composer before he swore to the DO. Being as the Forsaken are from AOL, wouldn't they know the song the Tuatha'an are wandering around looking for?
As for Rand on the cover- I WANTED A BUD LIGHT!!!
217. alreadymadwhenthehyperlinkswentnuts
It's (open square bracket)URL(equal sign)(whateverthelinkis)(close square bracket)(what you want to appear) (open square bracket)(slash)(URL)(close square bracket)
Amar Ramraj
218. aiel1219
*sniff sniff* (guess that doesn't work when us guys do it)
No one mentioned my cool pic in the comment...LOL!!!

NEways, what I actually wanted to ask was if anyone came across anything about international releases for TGS? I'm stuck all the way in India and worried that I'll be late in getting my hands on a copy. Mb I shud just plan a vacation early November...hmmmmmm....
Kurt Lorey
219. Shimrod
Maybe aiel1219, you should have a friend sent it to you. Last time I checked FedEx, et al delivered to most of India.
James Jones
220. jamesedjones
218 Aiel

Um... Cool pic!

217 AlreadymadthefirsttimeJordansaidTwoMoreBooks

Seems pretty straightforward, but you forgot the weave of Spirit, need for a circle of two women and a man, and Bela.
Michael Catapano
221. hoping
Re healing ter'angreal

I like this idea and there is some support for it in the books. It is strongly implied that Elayne found an orgasminator in the Ebou Dar cache. This represents a form of healing.
We know that she is reluctant to give it up.

So, the AOLers knew how to affect biological systems with a ter'angreal.They could probably do it with other forms of healing. It's a small jump to posit standing waves for the non-channelers to use it as well.
Probably still could not cure the common cold.

Thanks to all for you patience
Blake Engholm
222. UncrownedKing
On Cover art and @204 and others:

I for one am pissed that theres no bad guys with Trolloc hats........

Lets be honest we are 12 books deep, who here thought the covers would improve? Looking back in time Rand must have had about 5-6 plastic surgeries. He's looked long and lanky, Blonde, red headed, brown headed, built, HUGE (ACOS: is that Rand or Hulk Hogan minus fu-man-chu ???), he's been tatted and retatted. But alas nothings changed.

My money is this is a Madness scene. And has Avi been described as "busty"? Because dammmmmnnnn girl. ha

Its time for a new Post *twitchtwitch*
Blake Engholm
223. UncrownedKing
BTW @214

Thats a really good Aiel pic. Probably should change your icon........
Lannis .
224. Lannis
subwoofer @ 215: re: Cover art caption.

(Ahem.) I think you meant to say, " I WANTED A CANADIAN!" ;)
Lannis .
225. Lannis
Oh, and the various "explanations" of the bbCode for links are making me laugh. So nice of you guys to all help... um... clarify the issue. S'clear as mud. ;P
226. Sparrowhawk

Cover art :
the terms that spring to mind (that are censored for a family show like ours :-) )

Awful/absolute rubbish/garbage/crap (feel free to enter a word of your choice

I confess I have the art skills of a 2 year old amoeba but I find this so bad as to be an offence to the all of us nutcases (even to my untrained eyes the characters proportions seem wrong). I suppose the only consolation is that the standard of consistently poor cover art since post the TDR has been maintained. You can imagine the advert "You too can add to your collection of disgusting cover art - call TOR and ask for DARRYL SWEET - hurry now as stocks are limited with only 2 books to come"

It seems that this cover has been done by a 6 year old (apologies to all 6 year olds out there) that is trying to combine "Gone with the Wind", "Little House on the Prairie", a "Mills & Boon" book cover and the haunted house from the intro to the Scooby Dooby Doo cartoon.

Or is this perhaps the Pattern showing for all good there is bad and as such for the superb quality of the books (in general) we need the equivalent pigswill for a cover.

I mean come on!


thanks and apologies
Amar Ramraj
227. aiel1219
@225 Lannis
This is as clear as I can make it :S
(Take out the *'s and u got the exact code u need)
gives you:

U just substitute with whatever website address u want and substitute google with whatever u want to appear instead of the blue google.
I really can not think of a better way to explain....hmmmm... well unless I was next to u that is.
John Massey
228. subwoofer
@Lannis 224- um... Molson isn't Canadian anymore, much like Bud is owned by Brazilians or some such. So maybe the caption should read: I WANTED A LABATT'S BLUE- LIGHT... um... naw, just doesn't sound the same.
Am with King about the cover art- WTF is up with the house- Was hoping for a castle or something too... Some romance novel guy was given free reign to muck with us...
and nice pic aiel.... looks like something from Sinobi 3.
229. Sparrowhawk


Awesome art work - now that is cover art.

John Massey
230. subwoofer
@alreadymadwhenshehidtheremote- its openbracketurlequalshttpcolonwhateverclosed
bracketinstertcatchpharasehereopentbracketslashurlclosebracket meh.
Lannis .
231. Lannis
aiel @ 227: Dude, I'm okay with it--I can make links--but it's hilarious that everyone is trying to explain it in their own way... garbly gook!

sub @ 228: Damn. Forgot the non-canadian Canadian. Frankly, when I think Molson, I think this. Not so much "they're gone" so much as "they went out with a bong." XD

(Sorry folks!)
Kurt Lorey
232. Shimrod
Any reviewer who expresses rage and loathing for a novel is preposterous. He or she is like a person who has put on full armor and attacked a hot fudge sundae.

Kurt Vonnegut

Applicable to art as well.

As to the bbCode "hints", it's like reading a software manual written by the programmer(s). They use contexts that might not be clear to someone who did not write programs.

I really feel sorry for non-native English speakers. The fluidity of context in English (especially American English) must be ofttimes quite confusing.
Blake Engholm
233. UncrownedKing

I don't know if people are going to comment on your rant, but...

Your thoughts and feelings are shared by most of us (if not all of us). But what are we going to do about it. This rant comes up after every book comes out. So yeah we hate it, but I could give a shit about the cover. Pardon da french. I ususally take off the cover sleeves.
Kurt Lorey
235. Shimrod
This is Canada (and Canadians) now and always for me.

Canadian Geography Lesson
Amar Ramraj
236. aiel1219
@232 Shimrod
I see u use the term art very loosely.

And to counter yer quote I would like to quote myself "don't try to get paid for crappy work unless you are open to ALOT of rage and loathing"

(EDIT: there was a smiley her that was supposed to make sure no one took me too seriously but dunno wat happened to it :s)
But otherwise, I have actually grown sort of accustomed to the err...interesting artwork on covers, but always think it should have a little more relevance to the characters its portraying even if it is not so great art.
237. Sparrowhawk

Yup - covers are taken off (although the UK switched on COT to the just the wheel - quite nice actually)

tick tock - its 10:47pm where I am and I'm guessing that Leigh's review will be arriving at 3am for me so that may be a factor in a pointless rant ....but still something else to look forward to tomorrow....

Overall can't argue with your point mon ami.....

ps mucho respecto to you and quite a few others for the quality and humour of the posts
John Massey
238. subwoofer
@Shim- yes, that was us... circa 1980 something ;)
nowdays we lose the accent. FYI I miss John Candy from SCTV too.
239. alreadymadwhenthecoverfelloff
jamesedjones @220
Like I said, you needed to apply a specific weave.

UncrownedKing @222
The Dragon is closer to what it should be, as compared to ACoS. But.... the color is off. The color should be closer to the one shown on ACoS. Does the one who makes the cover art realize he's doing the same guy?
Kurt Lorey
241. Shimrod
Art, is in the eye of the beholder. RJ repeatedly approved of Mr. Sweet's work, so it might actually be WoT heresy to hate on it now. ;)

Maybe, a challenge should be issued whereas all the art critics around here ought to submit their own versions before being allowed to criticize the covers? Perhaps the submissions could then form the basis for next year's calendar?
Kevin Morgan
242. DrMorganstien
@203 alreadymadwhenBerelainwentallout
DrMorgenstien @201
Err no.
As soon as I saw that I knew I was wrong. This just proves I'm even less well informed than I had previously thought, ouch. Thanks for setting me straight though

@205 odigity
Most misnamed. Artist. Ever.
Galen Brinn
243. GatheringStorm
Maybe someone's covered it in a post since, but Daigian lead the circle because they were the ones using Callandor. As you may recall, Cadsuane said it's only safe when used in a circle, with a woman guiding the flows because it lacks the "buffer" to drawing too much power (a circle basically IS a buffer). Never mind that it would magnify The Taint's effect on male wielder (see the effect on Rand in the Battle of Ebou Dar in Path of Daggers).
Amar Ramraj
244. aiel1219
@Shimrod 241
RJ repeatedly approved of Mr. Sweet's work, so it might actually be WoT heresy to hate on it now. ;)

U do realise that this community is one of the most criticising/analyzing/(several other words that I can't think of now) bunch o ppl u ever will meet rite? But it's all in good spirit, we will still all buy the books n *bitch n moan* over the most minute thing we don't like LOL!!!

Ok, mb I'm just bored n choosing to reply to things at random here... sorry Shimrod :(
Roger Powell
247. forkroot

If memory serves, Elza led the circle that had Callandor. Jahar Narishma drew saidin through it, and Merise was also in the circle.
Galen Brinn
248. GatheringStorm
Whoops. My bad. I stand corrected. Previous comment retracted as I was thinking of the wrong group.

Therefore, there is no excuse for Daigian leading that circle.
Kevin Morgan
249. DrMorganstien
New topic idea until we get a post today:
Best part of this book?

Mine was definitely discovering Skimming, since I thought it was Traveling.
James Jones
250. jamesedjones
247 forkroot RE: 243 GatheringStorm

Your memory serves correctly. Dagnabit and Eben were out wandering with some other saidar channeler and no angreal or sa'angreal.
251. alreadymadwhenRandlosthishand
My copy of ACoS is just the maroon one without any art. It wasn't until later that I saw the art. And didn't believe it was Rand until I found the tiny, microscopic dragon on his wrist.

GatheringStorm @243
Yep. The ones linked with Eben was Daigian and ... Beldeine IIRC. I don't think anyone seriously believes Daigian and Beldeine by themselves could fight off one of the Forsaken. IIRC Eben was the strongest of Rand's Asha'man at the time, and without his help Aran'gar could probably have shielded Daigian and Beldeine even linked as they were. Then have his way with them. The perv.
James Jones
252. jamesedjones
Best part of this book? That's got to be the scene with Marin and Loial twitching at each other. That's just my opinion, and may have something to do with the fact that we are awaiting a post today. Who knows?
Kurt Lorey
253. Shimrod
Hey! You're the hoser. Gimme a beer.
Sam Mickel
254. Samadai
Aiel1219 and others,

Even if all the Aiel following Rand die in the last battle it wont be the Shaido or the brotherless left being a remnant of a remnant. Remember that there is still all of those families of the Aiel fighters left in the Waste. Women children some of the fighters as well. These if any would be the remnant.
255. wsean
forkroot @206 (yeah, I like the name too)

That's one of the awesome things about the books. There are cool and interesting characters who turn up for maybe two paragraphs, and then fade back into the background. It gives the world so much depth.
Amar Ramraj
256. aiel1219
Hmmmm... My fav scene in this book...hmmmmmm... ohhhh I know!!! After just seeing the quite errrmmm... busty Aviendha pic ... it's gotta be Aviendha runnin down to Ruhidean in da buff...purrrr.... LOL!!!!

Actually there are too many of really good bits in this book for me to pick a fav.
AJ MacPherson
257. Mackey62
I always the thought that the remnant of a remnant was the Tinkers. They used to be Jenn Aiel before they were the Jenn, so they would the remnant. that was just my 2 coppers.
Galen Brinn
259. GatheringStorm
But the Tinkers are not really Aiel anymore. They've been "outside" and interbreeding for three thousand years, so does that count?
David Dudley
260. Warspoon
The Aiel are not really Aiel anymore either. Ask the Jenn.
AJ MacPherson
261. Mackey62
But is a remnant ever really what it used to be?

I don't know. It is prophecy. If it was really, really easy to figure it all out, what fun would that be. Just the thought of the WO running around trying to save as many Aiel as possible and saving the Tinkers instead, kind of interesting after all history we saw earlier.
Blake Engholm
262. UncrownedKing
Is there one person who is Jenn still? I could see every Aiel dieing except the one Jenn or something dramatic like that.

My mind is boggled by this
James Jones
263. jamesedjones
260 Warspoon

"We're sorry. The number you dialed has been disconnected or is no longer in service. Please check the number and try again."
Ofer Nave
266. odigity
The cover for EotW is beautiful. This is difficult to understand. My looney theory which I made up just now is that he was on some serious shit when he painted it, then after it was a success, and he was making money and signing contracts, he decided to go sober so as to not endanger his career. And thus we receive an 18 year parade of mediocrity.

Darryl, man, do us all a favor - smoke this.
267. alreadymadwhentheAielwentbust
UncrownedKing @258
Not entirely solid. IIRC, they abandoned the covenant before Aiel started picking up the spear. By covenant I don't mean only the Way of the Leaf, since they obviously stuck to that, but also their servitude to the Aes Sedai.

odigity @266
Sniff. Bwahahahah
Sam Mickel
268. Samadai
Just to stir the looney plot. Bela is neither the DO or the Creator. She is instead Latra Posae Decum, the leader of the female Aes Sedai who side against Lews Therins plan of the Seals. Realizing what she did was wrong she transported her self through time(via waygate or portal stones)to help the new Dragon defeat the Do. Her spirit has taken over Bela and she is waiting for the right moment to reveal herself, whereupon she will heal Lews Therins Insanity by seperating him from Rand with Alivias help, therefore causing LT to die
269. alreadymadwhenBelaranoff
Samadai @268
I further posit that the reason Bela seems to be conniving with Narg is that she is actually stringing him along. When the right moment comes, Narg will serve as the new vessel for Lews Therin's soul. Until then she is keeping him close.
Antoni Ivanov
270. tonka
@ 248 GatheringStorm and all the others Whoops. My bad. I stand corrected. Previous comment retracted as I was thinking of the wrong group.

Therefore, there is no excuse for Daigian leading that circle.

Yes we have , two

1. RJ said so.
2. Cadsuane said so.

Really, we don't know the background of both Daigian and Eben. Neither how skillful they are but I assume that Daigian is more skillful since she had years and years to study with the power unlike Eben. And not mentioning Eben is too young, and experience is a quite important factor. Yeah he was at Dumai's Wells but even if Cadsuane knew that it's quite different fighting off the Forsaken than killing trying to kill more Aiel per second. So I'd rather agree with Cadsuane.
In the end it might have been better (for the Aran'gar encounter) if he was leading the circle.But how is Cadsuane supposed to know that there is a female channeling Saidin
James Jones
271. jamesedjones
270 Tonka

Have you gotten to any of the parts with Cadsuane, yet? She thinks she knows everything. Therefore, she is held accountable by all of the frothing fans for not knowing everything. QED (yeah, I've got no idea if I used that right) :)
272. MarcusCRB
@266 The cover for EotW is OK - proportions are weird, as his always seem to be but the thin that kills it for me is Lan is in Plate or Scale armour...

How the hell is the guy going to track silently, move swiftly and dance the forms wearing that lot???!
Maggie M
273. Eswana
My 2 cents on the cover:

Um, we're all used to the sort of covers we get from Tor/Mr. Sweet. So nothing new. Myself, I can't draw more than stick figures and cats from the back (an oval, a circle, 2 triangle ears and a tail), so I'm in no place to judge someone else.

However, I'm stoked it shows Rand with one hand.

As to the girl in the background- I though first of Elayne since she's blonde, but the white cotton blouse and darker skirt is sort of like what the Wise Ones wear, so many it's supposed to be Avienda after a visit to the hair salon?

And whoa, huge hole in the wall. Rand is pissed, me thinks.
275. Digital_Eon
UncrownedKing @222:

Actually, she kind of has... Kadere describes her in TFoH (chapter 29) as "full-breasted compared to most of the Maidens" - which could mean that the Maidens are unusually flat for the most part, but Aviendha certainly isn't.

Maybe she's wearing one of those low-cut Wetlands dresses designed to make her look like a Sevanna-esque Wise One. It's the new thing in Aiel fashion: fusion dresses!
276. Freelancer

Maybe, a challenge should be issued whereas all the art critics around here ought to submit their own versions before being allowed to criticize the covers? Perhaps the submissions could then form the basis for next year's calendar?

To be consistent, would you apply the same rule to criticism of the text? Because that would make this forum a very lonely place for the one or two of you out there that can write as well as Robert Jordan. Of course, then Pablo wouldn't have to lurk here worrying that we'd bust his joint.

Mr. Sweet's cover art is by no means Rembrandt, and there are always details that are clearly from the text, but misplaced (Lan as a Sheinaran in breastplate and with two back-harnessed swords on the cover of TEotW comes to mind). But keep in mind the conditions under which he works. Is the book in finished form when he's given the 'script to work from? Is he given direction about the scene to be portrayed? He is given notes about details to be incorporated? Does he get the time to read through the source material several times, to make sure his understanding of the details equals that of the most rabid fanatics?(You know who I mean)

So I don't get wrapped around the axle about cover art. That said, whoever does Bob Salvatore's cover art, that dude knows Drizzt better than Sweet knows Rand Al'Thor.


Yeah, that's what I'm saying.

Last point about the cover art, which is more in relation to the story. If indeed it is Aviendha being portrayed, the cleavage is way out of order. Remember how outraged Avi gets in Ebou Dar over Elayne's choice of dresses with the oval cut out. It's one thing to be nude in the sweat tent, among those you know, another altogether to show the public your skin. It just wouldn't happen.
277. alreadymadwhenEbendied
tonka @270
Daigian may have more years studying the Power, but she has one serious limitation. This is the reason Aes Sedai put so much stock in how many years one spent as novice and Accepted, because a combination of intelligence and strength in the Power will accelerate the learning cycle. She maybe intelligent but that does not necessarily translate into battle skill and she doesn't even have much Strength.
Besides, she may have more experience overall, but what about battle experience? It's a crude concept, but Eben has been blooded at Dumai's Wells and the Seanchan campaign. His reaction to the stress of being in a battle has been tested. This was most likely Daigian's first battle, since Cadsuane herself notes in her POV that Whites don't encounter battle situations much. Putting a first timer in charge of a war party is simply a recipe for disaster, rank or hierarchy does not matter.

jamesedjones @271
QED=Quod Erat Demonstrandum "Which was to be demonstrated."
278. Grinwell
Yeah. Cover girl is most likely Aviendha. Thanks for the clarification. I didn't notice what she was wearing as much as area.

I like several of DKS's covers. Even though they are not EXACTLY what Jordan described, they often give a good "sense" of the book.

Maybe with the decision to split the book into three and rush this one to publication, Mr. Sweet didn't have a lot of time to turn around the art for this one? I mean, Brandon didn't even have time to work on the title before the ball was rolling.
Roger Powell
279. forkroot

forkroot @206 (yeah, I like the name too)

(another blush) y'all picked a good week to say something nice, thanks again.


Yeah he was at Dumai's Wells but even if Cadsuane knew that it's quite different fighting off the Forsaken than killing trying to kill more Aiel per second. So I'd rather agree with Cadsuane.
In the end it might have been better (for the Aran'gar encounter) if he was leading the circle.But how is Cadsuane supposed to know that there is a female channeling Saidin

Cadsuane can't know in advance which gender of Forsaken will be encountered by which roaming circle. Plus, nobody in the 3rd Age would know very much about fighting Forsaken, so she's going on instinct anyway.

I agree that she'd be biased toward the much older and experienced channeler. I don't think strength comes into consideration because the combined strength of the circle is available to the leader. It was just an unfortunate coincidence that Aran'gar encountered a circle led by a female and thus gained a strong advantage in surprise.
Lannis .
280. Lannis
Hey all! We's pretty funny today--giggling like a fool, and my hubby's tired of hearing me repeat the jokes. What can I say, he married a geek! (Geekess?)

@ alreadymad... Dude, you've been mad for a really long time... ;)
281. Roxinos
"And I know she can’t lie, but even so, am I the only one that thinks the exploding Pattern quote sounds like bullshit?"

That's not the way the First Oath works, Leigh. She cannot lie, but she can say something that is untrue if she believes it to be true. So it may be complete bullshit, but Moiraine still thinks it's true. It's just her perception of the way the Pattern works.

Aes Sedai are also capable of sarcasm and speaking in any other terms which are not meant to be taken as truth, regardless of how the listener actually takes it.

If an Aes Sedai could convince herself that the sky is red, she could say "the sky is red" without the Oath preventing her from telling the lie.
282. Jenny Creed
About the nazi party analogue, I think it would be more accurate to say it's 1950, and the power puff girls are Jews and find out Egeanin is German. Yeah, she's from that place, but she hasn't personally done anything to them. At that point Nynaeve going all "You must suffer for the crimes of your people" is what I have the most problem with.
283. Ellie Angel
Nicely said, Jenny Creed.

re: Rand's women, I've always found it dodgy that Rand gets a blond, a redhead and a brunette. It's like the neapolitan ice cream of women. Gross.

I've always interpreted Melaine's bitten-off comment about the wedding wreath to be along the lines of 'you will marry Aviendha if I have to make the wreath and stuff it into her hands and force her to put it at your feet myself'.
Terry McNamee
285. macster
I know a lot of details get missed, but I always found it odd that nobody seemed to notice or wonder what in the world Lanfear meant when she said she'd found Asmodean "hiding in a hole". This is made clearer in the next book, in Chapter 3 "Pale Shadows"...but nobody ever wonders "Where was he? What was he doing there? How did he know where Graendal was?" It sure makes things that happen later on "intuitively obvious". ;)

Oh, and it indeed makes no sense for Asmo to take Couladin for his dragon-marking but not search Rhuidean. Plus it seems he could go in--when he and Rand enter Rhuidean at the end of the book there's no problem entering, just with channeling...which would also preclude Asmo putting the dragons on him there. So put me in the "did it in TAR/a dream/used a fake ter'angreal" and Couladin knew all along he hadn't gone to Rhuidean. He was nutty enough, and convinced of his own rightness to lead, that he would believe a dream or think not going to the city wouldn't matter since the dragons had appeared.

On a related note, while I agree that Moiraine's look was because she'd seen herself in the rings putting dragons on Rand, I find it ironic indeed that Couladin would accuse Moiraine of doing this when that is what Asmodean actually did to him. More proof though, I think, that it either happened in TAR/a dream, or Asmodean made him think a ter'angreal did it--either way, Couladin could then convince himself it happened out of destiny, not Aes Sedai/wetlander manipulation.
William McDaniel
286. willmcd
A few others have mentioned Seana's death already, but it occurs to me: despite the fact that RJ kept her at more of a distance than the other 3 dreamwalking WOs, is it not the case that she is the most important character to be killed by Shadowspawn to this point in the series (which is to say, she actually had a speaking part)?

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