Aug 28 2009 4:17pm

The Wheel of Time Re-read: Lord of Chaos, Part 10

What up, yo: it is time for a Wheel of Time Re-read!

Today’s post covers Chapters 14-15 of the Lord of Chaos, in which Dreams May Come. Heh. Heh heh heh.

Previous entries are here, and this and all other posts are rife with spoilers for all currently published novels in the Wheel of Time series. If you haven’t read, don’t read. For reals!

Oh, and uh, I kind of forgot to mention in the last entry that when Elayne and Nynaeve are wandering around the Tower in the Dreamworld, Elayne thinks she catches a glimpse of Egwene for a second. This turns out to be rather relevant to the beginning of the next chapter. So, yeah.

And that’s all the news that’s fit to print, ergo, we go!

Chapter 14: Dreams and Nightmares


What Happens
Upon catching a glimpse of Elayne and Nynaeve in Tel’aran’rhiod, Egwene leaps out to the nowhere place in between, where people’s dreams appear as tiny lights. She has been avoiding everyone in the Dreamworld, even her friends, for her dreams made her think it would be a bad idea to show herself to them. She is frustrated by the subterfuge, for she knows enough to learn more on her own, but it would be so much faster if the Wise Ones would not insist that she was not yet ready.

What took her a month to master for herself, they could teach in a night, in an hour. When they decided she was ready. Never until then. It galled so, when all she wanted was to learn. To learn everything. Right now.

She sees several dreams she knows, including Rand’s warded dreams and Bair’s; she flees from Bair’s, though logically she knows that if the Wise One had noticed her it would have already been too late to run. She reflects that there have been far too many strange people in Tel’aran’rhiod lately, in particular a copper-skinned woman who must be using a ter’angreal from her misty appearance, and a sturdily pretty young woman who Egwene mentally refers to as “the determined woman”, who she thinks must be a dreamwalker from how solid she appears. Egwene isn’t sure whether they are Black Ajah, and doesn’t know what to make of the fact that neither of them are ageless, but decided the best thing to do was avoid them. She thinks she’s seen glimpses of Rand, Perrin, and even Lan in the Dreamworld, but is sure she’s imagining things.

She frowned—or would have, had she a face. One of those lights looked... not familiar; she did not know it. But it seemed to... attract her. Wherever her gaze shifted, it came back to that same sparkling pinpoint.

She returns to worrying about her problems, but then realizes that the spark is coming toward her. Alarmed, Egwene tries to get away, but it reaches her and sucks her in, and suddenly she finds herself chained to a column in a courtyard, with Gawyn coming toward her. Egwene tells herself firmly not to accept anything as real, but can’t imagine what Gawyn is about, imagining her held captive. Suddenly, Rand steps out of a ball of flame into the courtyard.

Only it hardly seemed Rand at all. The real Rand was of a height and size with Gawyn, but this image overtopped Gawyn by a head. The face was just vaguely Rand’s, coarser and harder than it should be, the cold face of a murderer. This man wore a sneer. “You will not have her,” he snarled.

“You will not keep her,” Gawyn replied calmly, and suddenly both men held swords.

Egwene decides it’s time to leave, but nothing happens. The two men fight, and it ends when Gawyn runs Rand through and then decapitates him; Egwene tries not to scream. Then her chains are gone and Gawyn is in front of her.

“I knew you would come,” she breathed, and gave a start. She was herself! She could not give in to this, not for a moment, or she would be well and truly trapped.

Gawyn picks her up and asks if she can forgive him for leaving her in danger so long, and the dream Egwene snuggles against him and coos while the real Egwene is reduced to being along for the ride. He carries her down a corridor and suddenly they are in a beautiful meadow. He lays her down on the grass and gives her a flowery speech about his feelings for her:

“When I think of you, there is no room for any other thought. Your perfume fills my brain and sets my blood afire. My heart pounds till I could not hear the world crack apart. You are my sun and my moon and my stars, my heaven and earth, more precious to me than, life or breath or—” Abruptly he stopped, grimacing. “You sound a fool,” he muttered to himself.

Egwene thinks it was rather nice, actually, if a bit over the top, but abruptly the scene rewinds and starts over, this time with Gawyn berating himself for feeling this way about her when Galad is sick with worry over her, but that isn’t right either, so he rewinds again while Egwene fights not to lose herself to the dream. He tells her he loves her, and has never said that to anyone else, and he is terrified, but wants to know if maybe she returns the feeling.

“You sweet idiot,” she laughed softly. “I love you.” I love you, echoed in the part of her that was really her. She felt the barrier vanishing, had a moment to realize she did not care, and then there was only one Egwene again, an Egwene who happily twined her arms around Gawyn’s neck.

Nynaeve is still awake, swaying with exhaustion and cursing mentally at Theodrin, when suddenly screams ring out across the town, waking Elayne. Then her bed moves, almost flinging her to the floor, and Nynaeve says it must be a bubble of evil; they have to wake everyone up before they get killed. She hurries into the next room, ducking a washbasin that come hurtling at her head, to find two of the occupants being choked by their own bedsheets. She and another woman named Satina try to get the sheets off of them, but to no avail; Nynaeve desperately tries to embrace saidar, but cannot. Then Elayne appears and yanks the sheets off with the Power, after which they become still. They help the wounded women outside; Salidar is bedlam, and Nynaeve is infuriated to see a man with his head smashed in.

People should die after a long life, in their own beds, surrounded by family and friends. Anything else was waste. Pure miserable waste!

“So you’ve found saidar tonight, Nynaeve. Good.”

Anaiya is there with two more Aes Sedai, another Accepted, and three novices, including Nicola. Anaiya tells Elayne and Nynaeve to open themselves to linking; Sammael will find that they are not helpless against him. Nynaeve tries to explain it is not Sammael, but Anaiya shuts her up and tells her to get on with it. It takes three tries to draw Nynaeve into the link, but is awed by the feeling once she is part of the circle; she can feel the other women’s emotions, and feels a great surge of sisterhood for them. One of the Aes Sedai (Ashmanaille) smiles at her, but Nicola is still cool and considering. Elayne joins much more easily, putting the a’dam bracelet in her pocket first; Nynaeve does not want to consider what might have happened if she’d still had it on when she entered the link.

Suddenly Nicola spoke, sounding half-asleep. “The lion sword, the dedicated spear, she who sees beyond. Three on the boat, and he who is dead yet lives. The great battle done, but the world not done with battle. The land divided by the return, and the guardians balance the servants. The future teeters on the edge of a blade.”

Anaiya stares at her, and asks what that was about, but Nicola does not seem to remember saying anything, and Anaiya dismisses it and moves them out. All over the town, people are being attacked by anything that can move, even their own clothes, all easily dealt with individually, but overwhelming in the sheer numbers; Nynaeve tries not to be frustrated. After an hour, things have finally settled, and Anaiya dissolves the link. Frowning, she mutters that this was not what she expected from the Forsaken. Nynaeve is so tired she can barely talk, but mumbles that it was not the Forsaken, it was a bubble of evil. Everyone stares at her, and Elayne quickly puts in that they’ve encountered one before, in Tear, and adds that if Sammael attacked them, he “wouldn’t toss sticks about”. Anaiya does not reply directly, but tells Nynaeve to go to bed before she falls over. Nynaeve begins to ask Anaiya if she and Elayne can talk to her about something they found, but Anaiya cuts her off, and Elayne shakes her head at her. Nynaeve sees Theodrin limping along, and stubbornly decides to obey Anaiya no matter what Theodrin thinks.

Oh, Gawyn. A Damsel in Distress scenario, really? For a woman who can bend you into a pretzel without even getting up first? Lord. I don’t know whether that’s irritating, pathetic, or kind of exasperatingly endearing. Probably all of the above.

As to the “I love you” exchange itself... um. On the one hand, the whole deliberate clichéd-ness of the scene and Gawyn re-shooting (so to speak) his declaration of love was actually rather fun and clever, but Egwene going from zero to MAH MAN!! in two seconds flat was – startling, to say the least.

I suppose the explanation is that she’s felt that way all along and just didn’t realize it until now? I guess? Either way, it gets a raised eyebrow from me. Enh. It’s better than her falling for Galad, anyway.

Random nitpick: Gawyn is as tall as Rand in real life? Really? That seems... wrong. Rand is supposed to be freakishly tall among non-Aiel; wouldn’t someone have commented if Gawyn were an equally unusual height? Wouldn’t Rand himself have commented on it when they met in TEOTW?

Dammit, this is going to bother me now. Okay, I just looked that scene up, and Rand describes Gawyn as being “a head taller” than Elayne, who he in turn describes as being “tall for a girl”. That’s vague enough that I guess Gawyn could be as tall as Rand, but I am for some reason virulently against anyone other than Aiel being as tall or taller than Rand. So I declare the mention of Gawyn’s height in this chapter a gaffe. BECAUSE I SAID SO, THAT’S WHY.

(Or, maybe Egwene just sees Gawyn as that tall, heh.)

Bubble of Evil: I just looked around at the room I’m typing this in to see how many things I could be attacked by if they all got animated by Teh Ebil, and all I have to say is my ass would be TOAST. It may be time for a garage sale.

Nicola: So, is being generally unlikable a prerequisite for the Foretelling Talent, or what? Well, Gitara Moroso seemed like an okay person, so maybe not, but jeez.

As for what her Foretelling means, it’s pretty obvious by this point, but here’s the FAQ’s writeup of it if you want. I always say, you can never go wrong with an Arthurian reference.

Chapter 15: A Pile of Sand

What Happens
Egwene wakes up with a headache, as she always does after dreamwalking, ever since Lanfear’s attack in Cairhien. She remembers what had happened in Gawyn’s dream and blushes furiously. She’s too tired to get up, so she goes back to sleep and naturally dreams of Gawyn, but in her version he recites a lot more poetry.

Twice, right atop one another, she dreamed of taking him by the shoulders and trying to turn him to face the other way against his will. Once he brushed her hands away roughly; the other time, she was somehow stronger than he. The two blended together hazily. In another he began swinging a door closed on her, and she knew if that narrowing gap of light vanished, she was dead.

She has many more confusing dreams about Rand and Mat and Perrin and Aviendha and Min and Elayne, which upset her enough that her dreams turn to nightmares about being bound with an a’dam and Rand destroying Cairhien and the Wise Ones selling her “like an animal” to Shara, until she is woken by Cowinde, one of the gai’shain who has refused to put off the white when their time is up. Egwene tells Cowinde she doesn’t want any breakfast, which Amys overhears as she enters the tent, followed by Bair and Melaine. Melaine tells her if she will not eat, she will not get well enough to be let back into the Dreamworld. Amys comments that she tried to look in on Egwene’s dreams last night and could not; Egwene’s mouth goes dry, but fortunately they just think it means she was sleeping too poorly to dream.

Melaine frowned. Not at Egwene; at Cowinde, still kneeling with her head down. “There is a pile of sand near my tent,” she said with something near her old sharpness. “You will search it grain by grain until you find one red grain. If it is not the one I seek, you will have to begin again. Go now.” Cowinde merely bowed until her face touched the colorful carpets, then scampered out. Looking at Egwene, Melaine smiled pleasantly. “You seem surprised. If she will not do what is proper on her own, I will make her decide to do it. Since she claims to serve me yet, she is still my responsibility.”

The Wise Ones discuss the intractability of those like Cowinde; and Amys mutters that they “twist ji’e’toh beyond its meaning”. Egwene finds it interesting that though Rand’s flouting of tradition in revealing the true history of the Aiel is the cause of the gai’shain’s behavior (not to mention the siswai’aman and those taken by the bleakness), none of the Aiel seem to blame him for it (other than the Shaido). The Wise Ones have moved on to how much the Salidar Six are annoying them; Amys tells her Carlinya nearly accused them outright of holding Egwene prisoner, but Bair laughs and said it was worth it to see her try to get all the snakes out of her dress afterward. Melaine asks Egwene if her headaches have come back, and Egwene lies that they have not.

“How much longer do I have to stay out?” she asked. She hated lying to them, but she hated doing nothing even worse. The first ten days after Lanfear hit her with whatever that had been were bad enough; then she could not even think without her head splitting. Once she could, what her mother called “the itchy hands of idleness” had driven her into Tel’aran’rhiod behind the Wise Ones’ backs. You learned nothing resting.

The Wise Ones are noncommittal, and Egwene moves on to ask whether you can be pulled into another’s dream against your will. Amys says no, but Bair counters that if you try to watch the dream of someone who has strong emotions about you, or vice versa, you can be pulled in, and once in it is almost impossible to escape. Amys agrees.

“That is why no dreamwalker ever makes the mistake of trying to watch her husband’s dreams.” Melaine stared straight ahead, face darkening. “She does not make it twice anyway,” Amys added.

Bair and Amys tease Melaine a bit more, and Egwene asks, what if you don’t try to watch but still get pulled in? Bair says she’s heard that if the emotion is extremely strong, “love or hate so great it left room for nothing else”, then you can be pulled in just by noticing the other’s dream, but such a thing is very rare. Egwene fumbles for more questions to draw them away from the topic, though she still thinks about it herself, that what had happened meant Gawyn loved her so overwhelmingly, and that she loves him in return, though she had not been willing to admit it before.

The important thing now was that she knew the danger. She would be able to recognize Gawyn’s dreams the next time, and avoid them. If you really want to, that small voice whispered. She hoped the Wise Ones took the color rising in her cheeks for a healthy glow. She wished she knew what her own dreams meant. If they meant anything.

Yawning, Elayne joins the crowd of people in front of the Little Tower, where everyone is waiting to see Tarna’s departure. She catches sight of Leane in an alley with a strange man, no doubt one of her agents, and wonders again how Leane manages to pull off smiling like that without getting into trouble. Birgitte is in the crowd, too, for once without “that horrid Areina”, but Elayne is still grumpy with her for conniving to send Elayne to bed at dawn when there was still work to be done. Nynaeve joins her, yawning her head off.

There was some excuse for Birgitte—some, maybe; a little—but none for Nynaeve. Theodrin could not possibly expect her to have stayed awake after last night, and Elayne had heard Anaiya tell her to go to bed, yet there she was when Elayne came in, balancing herself on the stool despite its now crooked leg, head nodding every two minutes, muttering about showing Theodrin, showing everyone.

Through the a’dam bracelet, Elayne feels Moghedien’s smugness; she had spent the whole night and morning hiding under a bed, and not only hadn’t been touched by the bubble of evil, but had gotten out of all the clean-up work after as well. Siuan joins them, and Elayne asks what the casualty totals were; Siuan tells them seven died in the village and over a hundred in the army’s camps, with all those weapons around and no Aes Sedai to Heal immediately. Elayne asks anxiously about Bryne, but Siuan snorts derisively, as if anything could happen to “that man”. Nynaeve’s snarky comeback is ruined by another yawn, but she meets Siuan’s stare flatly, and Elayne wants her to tell what she’s learned. Siuan tries to browbeat her by bringing up what happens when Accepted pretend to be Aes Sedai, but Elayne is too tired to be scared, and tells her to spill, or she’ll “teach [Siuan] to sit up straight”.

Siuan’s eyes narrowed, and suddenly Elayne yelped, clapping a hand to her hip.

Siuan drew back the hand that had delivered the pinch without any try at stealth. “I don’t take well to threats, girl. You know as well as I do what Elaida said; you saw it before anyone here.”

“Come back; all is forgiven?” Nynaeve said incredulously.

“More or less. With a load of fish guts about the Tower needing to be whole more now than ever, and a bit of slippery eeling about no one needing to fear except those who ‘have placed themselves in true rebellion.’ The Light knows what that means. I don’t.”

Nynaeve mutters that she doesn’t understand why they’re asking for more time, and Siuan mutters about “weak-kneed fools”, with which Elayne agrees emphatically. Then six Sitters exit the Little Tower, escorting Tarna, who mounts her horse and rides off without another word. After she is gone, Romanda, a Yellow and the oldest Sitter in the Hall (pronouncement from the Hall are traditionally made by the oldest Sitter), climbs up on a cart and tells the crowd, basically, that they are not to worry; the Aes Sedai’s purpose in Salidar has not changed, so go about your business and the Light shine on everyone. Elayne deems the speech “a wagonload of nothing”. The crowd begins to break up; Siuan looks furious, but Nynaeve is already pushing toward the Little Tower, and Elayne follows instead of asking questions, anxious to keep Nynaeve from running her mouth off and ruining their chance to go to Ebou Dar. Nynaeve reaches Sheriam, Morvrin, and Carlinya, and tells them she wants to talk to them, alone. Elayne sighs, but Sheriam merely looks at her a moment before agreeing. They go to move inside, and are blocked temporarily by Romanda, who has a brief staring contest with Sheriam et al; she doesn’t move until they dip her slight curtsies. She sniffs and finally moves, and Elayne thinks that Romanda is one of those sisters who thinks the Salidar Six have far too much influence in the Hall. Once alone with them, Nynaeve explains about what they found. Sheriam asks if they’re sure, and when they answer in the affirmative, says very good; she will send a letter to Merilille (the Gray sister in Ebou Dar sent to garner support for the Salidar faction). Nynaeve bursts out that she’ll never find it, and Elayne quickly adds slightly more diplomatic support. Carlinya says flatly that Ebou Dar is no place for Accepted, and Morvrin agrees. Elayne points out that she is more qualified than anyone else in Salidar to locate ter’angreal, and she’s sure with Merilille’s guidance it will take no time at all.

It was an effort not to draw a deep breath. “In the meantime, you could send a message to one of Siuan’s eyes-and-ears in Caemlyn, so it will be there when Merana Sedai and the embassy arrive.”

“Why under the Light should we do that?” Morvrin rumbled.

“I thought Nynaeve told you, Aes Sedai. I’m not sure, but I think the bowl needs a man channeling too, to make it work.”

The others all gasp, including Nynaeve, though she covers it quickly before the Aes Sedai notice. This is a flat-out lie, of course, but Elayne think if they buy it, by the time she had “figured out” that a circle of only women would work as well, the rebels would be tied firmly to Rand. Sheriam finally says that’s as may be, but she and Nynaeve are still Accepted, and cannot go. Nynaeve proceeds to explode into a rant about how all they do is talk and sit around instead of doing anything.

Do you know why you sit and talk? I do! You’re afraid. Afraid of the Tower divided, afraid of Rand, the Forsaken, the Black Ajah. Last night Anaiya let slip that you had a plan ready in case one of the Forsaken attacked. All those circles linking, right on top of the bubble of evil—do you finally believe in that?—but all mismatched and most with more novices than Aes Sedai. Because only a few Aes Sedai knew beforehand. You think the Black Ajah’s right here in Salidar. You were afraid your plan might get back to Sammael, or one of the others. You don’t trust each other. You don’t trust anybody! Is that why you won’t send us to Ebou Dar? Do you think we’re Black Ajah, or we’ll run off to Rand, or... or...!” She trailed off in furious splutters and panting.

Elayne wonders whether to even bother trying to smooth that over, and then sees by their faces that Nynaeve is right; they are afraid. Carlinya asks coldly if they are quite finished. Much later, Elayne pulls her head out of the giant cookpot she’s scrubbing and berates Nynaeve for blowing up like that. Nynaeve points out that Elayne’s haughty speech telling them, essentially, to quit being cowards hadn’t helped either. Faolain interrupts them to taunt and be nasty and tell them to get back to work. Nynaeve apologizes, to Elayne’s surprise, and she returns in kind. She goes back to scrubbing, determined to get to Ebou Dar no matter what.

Sheriam turns from where she had been watching the girls, and says she regrets having to do that. Carlinya sneers and asks if Sheriam wants to tell two Accepted what “fewer than two dozen” Aes Sedai know, and Sheriam shuts her up with a glare.

“Those girls are right about one thing,” Morvrin said. “Al’Thor turns my bowels to water. What options are left to us with him?”

Sheriam was not sure they had not long since run out of options.


Sigh. Egwene, girl, I swear.

I don’t remember wanting to scold Egwene like this before. Maybe now that I’m older and wiser (*cough*) I have less sympathy with her burning need to jump in feet first for everything and to hell with the consequences. I don’t feel the need to condemn her for her recklessness, exactly, but it does make me sigh, when before I think I simply shared her frustration with the Wise Ones for holding her back.

Like the thing with the headaches. There comes a certain point in your life where you realize that no, actually you aren’t invincible, immortal, or infinitely repairable, and that inevitably changes the way you approach risk. This is not to say that you don’t take risks at all, but I for one have gotten a lot more selective about what is worth going out on a limb for. The days when I would ignore a cold in favor of working eighty-hour days until I developed full-blown pneumonia are long gone; these days, when I get sick, I stay home.

(Sadly, that is a true story. That same semester involved staying awake for six days in a row. During finals. I am sometimes amazed I survived college.)

But that’s the point; when I was twenty I knew intellectually that I could get sick or hurt, and I did get sick and hurt at various times, but I had a blithe confidence that whatever happened, I could always bounce back from it. And, well, I did, mostly, because I was young. As is Egwene – much more so than me in college, actually.

So to yell at her for not taking care of herself is pretty much an exercise in futility, really. Partially because she’s, you know, a fictional character who can’t hear you because she doesn’t exist, but also because she’s young, and she doesn’t get it.

Also, get off my lawn!

Annnyway. Egwene and Gawyn: So, not only is it True Love, but it’s A Love For The Ages type true love, huh? Hrm. I like the idea, but I really think this would have worked better with a little more lead-in and a little more time spent on it afterwards, you know? Although, presumably Egwene’s and Min’s “either-or” foretellings re: Gawyn are going to happen at SOME point, so maybe the payoff will be worth it.

As for the Salidar section, the chapter title is aptly chosen, representing as it does a fruitless, boring, repetitive task. I mean, this was deliberate, but it also WAS actually boring and repetitive, so I’m stuck in this kind of recursive mind-loop of “This sucks!” “But Jordan meant it to suck!” “But it sucks!” “Aaagh!”

Though Nynaeve’s rant at the Aes Sedai was rather cathartic. Until the pot-scrubbing, that is.

And… that’s all I got to say about that. I think things begin to happen soon, so yay. Enjoy your weekend, kiddies, and I’ll see you Monday!

Luke M
1. lmelior
More Gawyn, ugh. And I totally don't remember that he was supposed to be that tall.

I really think this would have worked better with a little more lead-in and a little more time spent on it afterwards, you know?

Definitely, this seemed like it came completely out of the blue.

Hmm, maybe Gawyn is the more interesting of the brothers...
I love Gawyn forever!

That might be a fun new survey, how would you die if a Bubble of Evil struck right now? My office is relatively safe, although that plant might just strangle me. It's one of those plants with 20 ft long vines that my office mate has hanging from thumbtacks in the corners of the wall. Great, now I'm going to be looking at it out of the corner of my eye for the rest of the day.
Rob Munnelly
2. RobMRobM
Question for discussion - did Egwene get "lucky" in her Gawyn dream? I'm strongly leaning towards yes, but might just be heavy petting. ;-0

Rikka Cordin
3. Rikka
I was hella frustrated with Egwene the first time I read this and I was only... 17? I wanted to smack her pretty hard. Also, the Gawyn crap is like diabetes sweet but also definitely not on my top romances of the books. Definitely not. I like Egwene, I like Gawyn, I even like them together, I just think they should have come together MUCH differently.
John Mann
4. jcmnyu
Okay, so this has been bothering me for a while, and the bubble of evil scene seems as good a place as any to bring it up. If you are the Salidar Aes Sedai and you are planning to bring down Elaida with no blood shed, how do you do it? The answer is in this chapter, circles of channelers. There are about 200 Aes Sedai in the Tower (remember that Elaida lost 51 to the Black Tower raid and more at Dumai's Wells) and 300 rebels. Not enough to form the required circles of say 3-4 channelers. However, what do the rebels have that Elaida doesn't? 1000 novices, that's what. Couldn't the siege be ended in about an hour by forming 300 circles of 3-4 channelers and storming your way in the Tower? Someone explain why this wouldn't work and wouldn't result in any spilled blood. Shield and bind. Repeat 200 times.
5. Tonkasal
Great Job Leigh!
Guillaume Bergeron
6. Nightbaron
Hehe, @1 for the survey, I'm sure the many action figures in my office would come to life and start attacking me.

As a big fan of Nynaeve, and as much as I enjoyed the circus storyline of tFoH, I have to agree that the Salidar scenes from LoC were somewhat painful. Not as painful as the Bowl of the Winds one in the aCoS, for sure, but they still dragged.

While I hate Nicola, I love her foretellings.
7. VarnerV
I am of the opinion that it would have been more interesting if Egwene had fallen for Galad instead of Gawyn. But I am a Galad fan, unlike most. There was more lead up, at least, since all the girls are all googly about him whenever they see him. The whole Gawyn thing just seems contrived. I dunno.
8. mityorkie
Bubbles of Evil: the random encounters of Randland. Darn convenient for RPG's, but generally not the most satisfying plot development device.
Tess Laird
9. thewindrose
RobMRobM - IIRC, Egwene thinks back on this dream at a later date and finds it silly that she was so embarrased, she would make love to him till something or other. So yes, dream loving, but when they meet in Cairhein they just kiss.
John Fitzingo
10. Xandar01
For the Survey, yeah, if the office and computer equipment doesn't get me while flying around, I am sure that the big plate glass in front of me would not be healthy.

The Gawyn dream, bleh. The only thing amusing about it is seeing how he really sees Rand (which is sad) and the fact that he replays the scene over and over. Oh how many times have I woken from a dream and replayed the events in my head in various ways to solve whatever dilemma my subconscious created for me.

I wonder if Nynaeve could have eventually broken her block through exhaustion. She got herself all mad and worked up with the bubble of evil distraction. What if she stayed up for 3 days, would she have eventually surrendered? (Staying up for 3 days straight for the first few days of boot camp took quite a bit of everything out of me.)
Tess Laird
11. thewindrose
Actually Galad is much more popular with us than Gawyn.
I found the whole Egwene and Gawyn thing hard to swallow. I mean it seemed she and Galad were going to be together. Min even sees the two together:“You know I’ve read you, Egwene. I don’t understand most of it – I almost never do – but I see things I am sure link you to Rand, and Perrin, and Mat, and – yes, even Galad, the Light help you for a fool. How can any of that happen if the Seanchan take you off across the ocean?”

-The Great Hunt, Falme
Jane Smyth
12. Kaboom
When I first read the part about the bubble of evil, I though that this was where Nyn would break her block.
During her session with Theodrin to try and break her block, Theodrin mentioned that all she needed was to channel once without being angry. And during the circle scene, Nyn was thinking that she wasn't even angry anymore. So I thought that was it. She needed a circle to break her block.
Needless to say, it was a false hope.

jcmnyu @4

Even better, now that they have an association with the Ashaman, they can create very big circles. The tower AS would have absolutely no chance to resist being shielded.
Agnes Kormendi
13. tapsi
The connection was refused when attempting to contact

Damn Children of the Light...! (shakes her hands at the screen)
14. Kiley Sedai
Hmmm...I'm going to say the phone cord would be pretty lethal in the Bubble of Office Evil. Oh, and I have a pair of scissors that might not be too friendly, either. Maybe I should ask for better insurance/a raise?
Rob Munnelly
15. RobMRobM
@9 - ultimate in safe sex, wouldn't you say?
Skip Ives
16. Skip
It may just be me but after reading Leigh's (accurate) description of Egwene as the "Oh oh I know" girl, I hear "It's A-lo-ha-MOR-a, not ALOH-a-mor-a". I read Harry Potter much after most of WOT, so that may be why I never made the connection, but yeah, she is very much that girl.

As for the height thing, don't people say that the Andoran royal line is tall and fair-skinned? I could be getting that wrong, but I seem to remember that. Rand is supposed to be tall for the Two Rivers, I always pegged him at around 6'2" to 6'4" or so. So if Gawyn was 6' to 6'2" he'd be around the same height.

And @1, I'm in a office building, so very dead.

RobMRobM No comment.
17. Hopper
So am I right in assuming that the thing that "fewer than a dozen Aes Sedai know" is concerning Egwene?

Also, she really annoys me with her eagerness to learn everything now. It almost feels like a sick addiction to me. Actually before the whole Amyrlin thing I was kind of thinking Egwene might end up choosing Brown Ajah (although she would be a decidedly less spacey version of a brown sister)
Marcus W
18. toryx
I know that RJ keeps pointing it out, over and over again, but one of the things I love about Nynaeve is perfectly represented in this quote:

People should die after a long life, in their own beds, surrounded by family and friends. Anything else was waste. Pure miserable waste!

That just seems to sum up everything about her.

Egwene and Gawyn romance: Yeah, totally out of left field. I've always been a total romantic, and especially when I first read this novel but even I rolled my eyes and did a little mock gagging.

Much as I hate to admit it, Leigh's right; Egwene's stubbornness is entirely appropriate for her age. It still irritates the bloody hell out of me though.

I can't believe that Nynaeve and Elayne actually expected the Aes Sedai to let them go chasing after the Bowl. Talk about naieve. But I was amused by Nynaeve's speech and especially when Nynaeve mocked Elayne's high and mighty addition. Cracked me up.

Finally, as for the Bubble of Evil Poll: I think it'd be amusing to be beaten to death with my monitor while reading y'all's comments but I'm most likely to be strangled by my headphones while listening to Path of Daggers. Which, considering how much that book bores me, seems really appropriate.
19. Hopper
Oh and for the survey... I have a candy jar on my desk that I would love to get into a battle with. Although if the animated candy doesnt kill me, the late onset diabetes probably will.
20. VarnerV
@ thewindrose
I am totally with you, and I never saw Galad as being bad. I see Gawyn as completely unworthy of Eg, while Galad is in the position now (as leader of WC in later books) to have enough in his life to not feel ignored by Eg's responsibilities. He also doesn't seem to be petty or jealous, or as prone to jumping to conclusions as Gawyn.
I heart Galad...!
Marcus W
21. toryx
skip @ 16:

Rand is supposed to be tall for the Two Rivers, I always pegged him at around 6'2" to 6'4" or so. So if Gawyn was 6' to 6'2" he'd be around the same height.

Oh my. Look out. I remember when I said the same thing a few books ago and was lambasted by my ignorance (and subsequent disbelief).

You'll be shocked, shocked I tell you! when you find out how tall he's really supposed to be.
Tess Laird
22. thewindrose
So true RobMRobM:)
Skip: from Plots, Characters and the Wheel of Time-
Q79- Exactly how tall is Rand?

Six foot five to six foot six.
Skip Ives
23. Skip
Ah right - I remember that now, so I was pretty close. I hedged it down thinking I was making him too tall. Oops
Keith Benson
24. Midas
My first post ever! Love the recaps Leigh!

With respect to Gitara, I don't think she was such an "OK person" either. After all, she sent Luc into the Blight, probably to become Slayer...

And I could swear she did some other questionable things but I can't remember them any more...
Andrew Lovsness
25. drewlovs
On my second re-read, I was actually looking for hints at the love affair of Egwene and Gawyn, and convinced myself at every "meeting" that there was, indeed, foreshadowing forit. At the time, Jordan was THE author for me, and I had not read any other author in years... literally. I was working 80+ hours a week, and the WoT was the thing to do on my precious hour lunch. I looked forward to it every day.

On hindsight, I would have to agree with Leigh. The foreshadowing I "saw" was like an ink blot test; you see what you want to see. JORDAN might have thought he was laying down hints, and if you think back to you first true love, you might remember that you only ad strong feelings after you had some sort of intimate contact. I know I did. But if this was what he was attempting to do, he really expected a lot from his readers...
Keith Benson
26. Midas
Oh, and with respect to Gawyn's and Egwene's romance, remember that they are young (especially Egwene). Is it really a stretch for two youngsters who have never been in love/dated before to immediately declare love for the person they are infatuated with?

Gawyn has had the hots for Egwene for quite some time, so his feelings are not really surprising. While all signs were pointing to Galad as Egwene's choice early on, I think there have been clues along the way. And knowing how *he* felt about her might have sealed the deal for her.

Anyway, I always liked Egwene the best of the supergirls so maybe I'm an apologist. Still, it seems like many folks who post like her the *least* so I'm glad to step in and (finally) defend her.
Tess Laird
27. thewindrose
I know when I first read the above chapters, and Elayne and Nyn are talking about the 'Bowl of foreverblasting Winds' I was like yeah right, sure they will let you go. First they are accepted, second one is the Daughter-Heir of Andor, and third a woman that grew up with the Dragon. Yep, go ahead kids - have a great time. Don't get snatched up by Elaida. I am sure the Forsaken won't be interested in you either. Have fun!!! Yeah, I don't think so.
Antoni Ivanov
28. tonka
jcmnyu @4

First they would never ever use novice in such matter , they would never risk their life this way, and I must say I agree with them. This here was in defense , the novices were already in danger.
And second you forget that in the White Tower are stored almost all angreals and sa'angreals and they can make circles too but more powerful than the Salidar's and we don't know what sa'anrgreals they have so they might be much more powerful. What happens when 4 weaker circles face one stronger. It's not like the 4 circle can combine their strengths (13 is the max number). It will be 4 separate attacks, it won't be that easy to deal with.

And what about Gareth Bryne's soldiers,if they want it bloodless they cannot include them and that means that besides dealing with the stronger circles the Tower has they will have to deal with 50000 Soldiers. After all it's only one woman who manipulates the power in circle and an arrow can kill as easily.And one Aes Sedai can separate her flows just a few time despite the strength of the cirle. There are many things that can go wrong I didn't mentioned probably half of them and didn't think of a tenth of them. No it won't be bloodless. I cannot agree.
Jane Smyth
29. Kaboom
For the survey,
If a bubble of evil happened at work, there is no chance I would survive very long. As I work in a lab, there are about a million glass bottles (OK not a million, but very many) on shelves. If not that, then maybe the Bunsen burner will burst in flame in my face, or the scalpel blades will cut my throat or one of the heavy machines will crush me... too many terrible ways to die. If there was a bubble forcasted, I would stay at home. :)
Greg Bloom
30. MuleHeadedLummox
Attacking the White Tower using circles with all the 1000 Novices/Accepted is not a viable battle plan in and of itself for several reasons. First: Even if they travel into/close to the White Tower to avoid the guards at the gates and the majority of Elaida's army in the city of Tar Valon, the tower will still have lots of Warders and guards within it, meaning that they invaders would have to bring their own Warder's/guardsmen to fight them. While there would probably be fewer casualties than if they rebels tried to take the entire city, it would not be bloodless, and I doubt the rebel Aes Sedai are willing to shed any more blood inside the tower if they can avoid it.

Second: Now that Taim has an agreement with the Tower faction, both sides have access to Male channelers to expand circles. And while they don't know about this deal, I still don't think that the rebels would be willing to trust the Asha'man enough to have them provide help in retaking the Tower.

Third: The rebels in general have been trying to put off taking any definitive action against the Tower AS as often as possible. Without Egwene to spur them on, they would probably still be in Salidar or Murandy. They don't have the will to risk the potential 'unity' of the Aes Sedai if there is any possible way around it. Many of them are probably satisfied with the current status quo, and would resist launching an attack such as this, even if they were willing to risk the Novices/Accepted (which they aren't, seeing how they are not full Aes Sedai).
Pete Pratt
31. PeteP
I always figured Galad, Gawyn, and Rand to be close to the same height. Of course, being 6'4" or over is exceptional.

Even though I used to roll my eyes whenever Nynaeve appeared (though I enjoy her character now that I am much older, a little wiser, and have had 14 years of marriage), I have always loved her rant here.
32. Hopper
My 2 cents on 2 things...

1. About the challenging the tower thing. Yes I think that would have worked, but I think MuleHead makes a good point that so far the Salidar sisters have been taking as little risks as possible. A full frontal storm of the Tower with linked novices seems a stretch. Plus I really like the plot thread of Egwene subverting Elaida's power from within, so I don't really care that they didn't do something more direct.

2. I saw the Egwene + Gawyn thing coming from like 10 miles away. I guess I just always saw him as a much more typical romantic hero, and never really felt like Egwene was that into Galad, because as hot as he apparently is, she never jumped on the chance to "hit that" (two rivers style, of course) even though it was clear he wanted her. Ya the build up was a little weak, but with all the other plot lines going on, and the general slow pace of the later books, I'm kind of glad RJ didn't spend more pages dealing with it.
Jason Lyman
33. jlyman
@11. thewindrose

I see things I am sure link you to ... yes, even Galad, the Light help you for a fool.

Does this necessarily mean a romantic link? Now that Egwene is Amyrlin it could be a political arrangement with him. I think that Min's interpretation was probably off put by her own base attraction to Galad.

@12. Kaboom

When I first read the part about the bubble of evil, I though that this was where Nyn would break her block.

I had the exact same ethought myself. Especially when Anaiya comments on her finding saidar.

RE: Gawyn's height. She only said "of a height with" which in my book says within a few inches or so. So for me that puts him just over six feet.
Alice Arneson
34. Wetlandernw
Re: sudden love for Gawyn... It's not totally out of the blue. Somewhere a couple of books ago Lanfear (I think) commented on the brothers occupying Egwene's dreams, and Gawyn much more than Galad. I'll go back and find the quote if I need to... What I found most sympathetic in the dream sequence, actually, was Gawyn's perception of himself. VERY different from what most people see in him; he behaves in a manner consistent with his training, but he's not conceited and in fact sees himself as rather a goop - especially compared to his adored elder brother.

Yeah, she acts 16. More irritating the older you get? Yeah, probably. I seem to roll my eyes over it more than I used to. Girl needs to learn to pick her battles. Oh, that's coming up soon, isn't it?

jcmnyu @4 Shield & bind would only work until the TAS caught on and linked themselves. Meanwhile, the old argument of "perception" would certainly allow some of them to use the OP in what they would undoubtedly see as defense of their lives, and their Warders have no prohibition against defending their AS in any case. Confusion and chaos, and definitely spilled blood. And there's the little detail that they have to get to the Tower in the first place. If you go conventional, you leave behind you all manner of folks who will see you as aggressors and may well shoot you in the back. If you Travel to somewhere inside the Tower, you gain an element of surprise but tie up your strongest channelers in making Gateways for a while. But basically, I think the biggest reason they'd never do it (even if they thought of it) is the AS would never take novices into a potentially (certainly?) dangerous situation like that.

Well, I suppose that while I was writing this another 20 comments have popped in, but I have to go run errands so I'm posting anyway. I'll apologize later if necessary....
Nathan Martin
35. lerris
I was actually caught in a bubble of evil this past weekend. Fortunately, the steak knife that attacked me was only able to stab the tip of my thumb before I wrestled it onto the counter.
Maiane Bakroeva
36. Isilel
I don’t feel the need to condemn her for her recklessness, exactly, but it does make me sigh

Yes, but in this series in particular this sort of behavior seems to consistently lead to successes, so it is really unfair to single Egs out. I mean, how many times did the TR boys did something extravagantly dangerous when on the brink of total exhaustion/wounded, seemingly against common sense, and it turned out to be just the thing?

And of course most of the advances in channeling during the books happen the same way too - people just jumping into potentially dangerous things without a clue.

As we see here in Salidar chapters with El and Nyn, instutional training is just worthless after the merest basics ;).

Also - with Forsaken out and about and TG looming how slowly can people connected to the Dragon Reborn afford to go? Frankly, I still feel that the WOs wasted a lot of Egs time with the useless disciplinary crap.
William Fettes
37. Wolfmage
Ugh. These are totally not my favourite chapters, especially after dozens of re-reads. Previously I think I found all the sequences involving the in-between T'A'R dreamspace kind of intriguing, because it was cool, so there was enough interest to get past cliche and annoying aspects of Gawyn's dream. I probably wasn't as rusted on with my negative judgement of Gawyn either.

However, as I've commented before, every time I read it now I just get annoyed at the way we're forced as readers to buy into the whole love for the ages line RJ is taking on Gawyn and Egwene (nice turn of phrase, Leigh). For me, it really seems like a cheap way to inject steroids into this romance that was never that well founded in the books. Fine, he loves her - etc - but giving it one in a million status by authorial fiat is kind of grating to me. I suppose the intention is to make up for the lack of very solid groundwork in the earlier books, and probably also to help Egwene inoculate us against too much alienation with Gawyn. Well, that aspect certainly didn't work with me.
Tess Laird
38. thewindrose
HurinSmells brought up an interesting idea on the last thread. Nyn and Elayne are using need and end up in the same room as Egwene:
Chap 14 At the sight of Nynaeve and Elayne, Egwene did not step ou of the dream: she leaped out. {...}She did not think they had seen her, but what under the Light were they doing there,(emphasis RJ) in a part of the Tower that held nothing of interest?
Back in Chapter 13 Suddenly Elayne gasped, "Egwene!" Nynaeve whirled around, but the passage was empty. "I saw her," Elayne insisted. "I know I did."
So need brought them to Egwene first, then she stepped out of the dream and when they took their next step Egwene was no longer in T'a'R to be found so they ended up in the room with objects of power. So that was a good forshadowing of something that the SAS needed I thought. Just caught it this time because of HurinSmells comment.
Rob Munnelly
39. RobMRobM
@38. That was a really interesting point: Egwene as the answer to need. Wow. Thanks, re-read!

I actually found Egwene and Gawyn to be highly plausible. I picked them out as a likely and well-suited couple back in TGH. Hearkens back to earlier talk that all each one of the Trakands needs is a partner from the Two Rivers to make him/her happy and/or keep them in line and not insufferably arrogant. A touch more groundwork in the last book or two would have been nice but they haven't been together, so not much RJ could have done. Like @26, guess I'm an Egwene apologist too.

Skip Ives
40. Skip
Re: Egwene and Gawyn

I always thought the groundwork here was well laid, we are just seeing the vast difference between how we act and what we think.

Gawyn won't press himself forward when Galad shows interest, because he assumes he'll lose and he does admire Galad in some ways. Egwene is just a "good" girl from a fairly restrained town. I wouldn't expect the two of them to be throwing themselves at each other when they were in the Tower.

However, Gawyn can dream of Egwene. We see something that is very private and not meant to be shared with the world. Egwene was in the dream, she knows Gawyn actually does care about her, and that has to make her much more confident when they next meet.
41. GregoryD
Re: Gawyn and Egwene. Yeah, I think they did the deed. She is blushing later on, thinking how could she?!

When asked if Shadar Horan rapes Moghedien later in ACOS at Shayal Ghol, RJ said in an interview that, "yah, that and other things." So RJ has a habit of stating very little and letting the reader make his/her own conclusions.
Lannis .
42. Lannis
Nicola's Foretelling: Uh, Anaiya dismisses this? I know they're in the middle of a crisis, but when you're in a world where there is such a thing as Foretelling, and someone suddenly starts spouting gobbley-gook at an absurd moment (or even normal ones!), open your ears!

thewindrose @ 27: re: Nynaeve & Elayne off to find the Bowl of the Winds...

Don't get snatched up by Elaida. I am sure the Forsaken won't be interested in you either. Have fun!!! Yeah, I don't think so.


Re: Bubble of Evil... yeah, um, I'm looking at a sea of Legos and having stepped on them earlier (still have the imprint on my foot!), I'm thinking I'd be slowly constructed to death... you know, after the recliner drop kicks me to the floor... ugh... :/

Thanks Leigh, have a great weekend!
Kristina Blake
43. kab1
I was not surprised by the Egwene Gawyn pairing, I do seem to recall her mentioning she liked both brothers and possibly Gawyn more. Alas, I will never remember exactly where I the books I got this notion from as I listen to the audiobooks.

What I found more surprising was her jump to amyrlin, not so much that they choose her as amyrlin, but that she was so good at it, having her own ideas apart from Siuan's plans. I know RJ is setting us up for this, but I still had a bit of a time adjusting, especially as we see her acting with youthful recklessness/ambition even in this first chapter here.

It's not so much that I don't think she has the spirit/personality for it, it's just that it seems so quick to me. I am a huge Egwene fan, so I say this as someone who really enjoys her character! I do think we saw her mature quite a bit during her time with the Aiel however, and the scene where she tells them the truth about being Aes Sedai and meets her toh is quite powerful (this scene is coming up soon I think!)

Also, Hurin Smells's notion of Egwene being the target of Ny and Elayne TAR leaps for what is needed to help Rand is awesome! I never thought of this before, and think it's a great possible explanation.
Antoni Ivanov
44. tonka
Lannis : Anaiya doesn't completely dismiss it. She dismiss it for the moment but at the end there is moment when she says that she will talk with Nicola first thing in the morning. I doubt they will change cooking recipes.
Kristina Blake
45. kab1
oh, and as far as the bubbles of evil go- I also work in a lab, so the glassware, chemicals, and bunsen burners would quickly make it curtains for me. Unless of course since we're having bubbles of evil, I could also channel, which would be the coolest thing ever!
Antoni Ivanov
46. tonka
And Egwene being target of Ny and Elayne's need. It make totally and complete sense. After all they were looking for something to tie the Salidar AS to Rand and there is nothing better than Egwene to do that.Very good catch, I never noticed it before.

@kab1 "recklessness/ambition" - that combination might not be great for a pupil but it is very good for Amyrlin.And especially when you have old-Amyrlin-master-manipulator for adviser.
Francesco Paonessa
47. ErrantKnave
@1 lmelior
"Ugh Gawyn." I couldn't agree with you more. He used to be so cool. But I digress.

Actually, I don't digress yet. The equal-to-Rand height made me do a double-take as well. Grr. In addition to Leigh's list of people who should be as tall as Rand, isn't Lan part of that list. I always thought he was as tall, and maybe more broad in the shoulders. Or is it only Perrin who is more shoulder-broad than Rand?

Blood and bloody ashes. NOW I digress.
Francesco Paonessa
48. ErrantKnave
BTW... Teh Ebil? Yeah, I never realized how many sharp and pointy things there are near my desk. I wonder if RJ ever thought about that, what with all the weapons he had lying around. He would have been snuffed out faster than Asmodean.
Lannis .
49. Lannis
tonka @ 44: Yeah... was just skimming my copy and saw that passage... whoops! Thanks! ;)
Alice Arneson
50. Wetlandernw
Lannis @ 42 - Nicola's Foretelling: Uh, Anaiya dismisses this? So with you. Hello?!? You at least make a note of this!! Sure hope someone in the group has a really great memory. Makes you wonder - how do these Foretellings get remembered in general? Elaida apparently doesn't get lost in the process and remembers her own (with what accuracy, do you suppose?), but Nicola doesn't know she said anything, much less what she said. Does anyone remember which way Gitara leaned?

Oh, and Midas @24, Gitara was also the one who sent Tigraine to the Waste to become a Maiden of the Spear. Other than that, the only Foretelling we know of hers is the one when the Dragon is Reborn on the slopes of Dragonmount. From the little we learned about her in the books, she didn't sound like the most lovable of people, in any case. Respected, yes, but...
j p
52. sps49
Bubbles of Ebil would likely send an army of Miis from the TV at me right now to pummel me with their little round hands.

I agree that Egwene is one of the few who appear to act as if time is of the essence (which it is). There is no time for Pai Mei to make me prepare fish heads, he needs to teach me the Five Point Palm Exploding Heart thing as soon as I learn the foundations for it.

We see so little actual teaching or classes, though. What weaves has anyone learned from Aes Sedai or Wise Ones? Aviendha's fireball is the only example I can recall.
53. Freelancer
RE the whole what in your immediate environment can kill you thingy...

You learn to scan for such things when you live and work aboard ship. Any loose item is a potential missile hazard if a rogue swell causes an unexpected list, so you keep things stowed or tied down to limit movement. There are certainly plenty of loose items in my office, but I would be more afraid of the death of a thousand paper cuts if everything started swirling around me, than of solid objects hitting me. The Bob's Big Boy figure might be imposing if he were to throw his burger at me...

Didn't the Salidar Six just undergo a very humbling experience in T'a'R, where they were only saved by the knowledge and action of Elayne the Accepted? So now, when both Elayne and Nynaeve tell them they KNOW what just happened, that it wasn't Sammael, instead of thinking, "Ok, these girls have a clue, maybe just once we should listen to them", they're right back to "Speak when spoken to, child, don't bother your betters, now link up". Sheesh. I have absolutely no issue with Nynaeve tearing into them.

I'll take Pot-scrubbing in Trade for Scathing Tirade for $800, Alex.


Nobody outside of a relationship can feel what is felt inside. I guarantee that most people who knew myself and my wife before we were married wouldn't have guessed how deep our romance went. Probably many that know us now wouldn't realize the level of passion that still exists. I don't have any problems with how this is written at all. Just wait until Berelain falls head over heels for Galad. They are nothing alike, shouldn't be compatible at all. Egwene and Gawyn are much more similar in many aspects.
54. Matt A.
Gotta say it, I have always detested Gawyn. I never liked him much to begin with, and when he sided with Elaida? Useless idiot.

Galad, however, has always been cool.
55. Abernethy
Anyone else think it was out of character for Nynaeve not to get more upset about all of the people hurt by the bubble of evil? She was mad enough to channel at the beginning, but after the linking she goes off to bed...but doesn't even go to sleep, and never a thought about how she might be able to do some Healing.

I know she's tired and just spent an hour channeling, but come on, tons of people are out there hurt and dying and she's the best Healer they've got! I've always been confused why she wasn't demanding to be out there healing until she collapsed (kind of like Rand at the siege of Cairhien).
William Fettes
56. Wolfmage
To those saying they weren't surprised by the Gawyn romance, I don't think the lack of groundwork being alleged here was ever meant to suggest that there was no groundwork whatsoever. I think the point Leigh and others are making here is that they found it a little forced along by this scene and not convincingly 'organic'. Yes, the seeds were planted here and there, but it kind of went from a more one-sided childish infatuation, with Galad in the mix, to this love for the ages, grand cosmic fireworks - capable of dream suckage.

Egwene apologist is way too harsh a phrase for me to use, but, yes, some of us find Egwene's character significantly less endearing and relatable than others. For those of us with non-trivial reservations about her behaviour through the series, her rapid elevation in the story (arguably beyond her pay grade) and all the gushing praise she receives can certainly evoke mixed feelings. Accordingly, this metaphysically-endorsed entanglement with an even less liked character, Gawyn, doesn't help that sense that we are being taken beyond our own comfort zone.

RJ seems determined for us to acknowledge that Egwene is brilliant and awesome, no matter our opinions of her, and this grand love, beyond what most ordinary mortals can know, is an extension of that enforced helplessness; we just don't have much choice to interpret ourself because it is virtually decreed by authorial fiat. Personally, I prefer to appreciate the strength and depth of love by being shown it, through reciprocity between the characters, rather than being simply told that it is so. My feeling on the dream suckage is that the love between Gawyn and Egwene is being artificially developed here by far too much by 'tell', via Wise One's commentary, rather than 'show'. Later events may well give greater substance to the framework established here, but we shall see.
Tess Laird
57. thewindrose
Some weaves that were actually learned in a class/Wise One. The spinning and juggling of 'light' balls can also change their colors(Elayne and Egwene show this off when novices, before they go off with Liandrin. Egwene does learn a lot from the Seanchan weapons wise and how to locate ore. Egwene learns the eavesdropping weave from Moiraine. Elayne 'learned' the warder bond by spying on some Aes Sedei(don't know if that counts}. Elayne learns about weather weaves from a Windfinder. Egwene learns a lot about dreaming from the Wise Ones. Elanye also picks up how to do the first sister weaving when her and Aviendha become first sisters. The next time I remember any learning is when Elayne is pregnant and Monaelle teaches Sumeko, Aviendha and Elayne Caressing the Child.
So, yeah the SGs mainly learn weaves on their own, by experimenting or by doing something and by doing it they then learn how to do it - i.e. fastening a ball of light to the wall and then thinking I am learning how to do things without knowing what they are.
Alice Arneson
58. Wetlandernw
thewindrose@38 Well, so much for my theory about Egwene finding the object in tGS; I think you're right about Egwene herself being what they need. A little subtle foreshadowing, that Egwene really was what was needed to keep the SAS from going back to Elaida. I know my first time through, I didn't realize they were going to make her Amyrlin until it they actually summoned her from the Waste. (I think I caught on then...) But if you were catching all the tricky little tidbits, and putting the pieces together the right way, it really was all there. Too subtle for me, obviously; I missed it all 7 times through, and only caught it now when someone pointed it out. *sigh*
Alice Arneson
59. Wetlandernw
Okay, I gotta say this. For all the complaints about things we don't see in the book, did you really, seriously want to read long chapters about novice and Accepted classes while in the WT, getting to know Elayne's brothers ditto, conversations/lessons while moving through the Waste, more lessons every day and every night while with the Aiel outside Cairhien, plus all the hours of all the days they've been in Salidar? Many of you seem to have a problem with this, but it doesn't bother me at all to have been spared those details. I'm perfectly happy to have had them take place off screen. Granted that the time frame hasn't been as long as it should be for "proper training," AS style. But they have had months of lessons, and learned enough to make a pretty good basis for further steps on their own. So what if we didn't "see" them learning all 257 of the basic weaves or whatever; why should it be so hard to accept that they were taught a lot during the times they had?
William Fettes
60. Wolfmage
Wetlandernw @ 59

"For all the complaints about things we don't see in the book, did you really, seriously want to read long chapters about novice and Accepted classes while in the WT, getting to know Elayne's brothers ditto, conversations/lessons while moving through the Waste, more lessons every day and every night while with the Aiel outside Cairhien, plus all the hours of all the days they've been in Salidar?"

I don't make that criticism personally. I certainly don't think long chapters would be appropriate. But now that you mention it, I wouldn't mind if we had seen a bit more on-screen action in that direction. I think it could have strengthened the value of Aes Sedai's pedagogical instruction, which is still theoretically there, but tends to be overshadowed in practice by the sheer utility of being strong in the power.

Non-channelling tuition is more problematic, however, and even channelling techniques would hit a wall where it starts to over-expose the magic system.

I think other series have dealt with lessons in an engaging and interesting way though, such as Harry Potter series and Mistborn: The Final Empire, so it's not impossible. Though it helps that Harry Potter's magic system is an arbitrary black box that isn't required to make sense.

"But they have had months of lessons, and learned enough to make a pretty good basis for further steps on their own. So what if we didn't "see" them learning all 257 of the basic weaves or whatever; why should it be so hard to accept that they were taught a lot during the times they had?"

Agreed. I think they had sufficient groundwork to go their own way and your imagination can fill in the rest.
John Massey
61. subwoofer
Hi Leigh! Took me awhile to get here but I was reading every comment and using my post-it note system.

First off- Hi Midas- welcome to the club:)

Gawyn's height is a non issue folks. It was a dream yo! In dreams you can be 10ft tall and bullet proof. Seem to recall that Rand was 6'6". Frickin' giant. We had that whole conversation about how large and lumbering marathon runners must be... y'all remember, I ranted etc. as per usual.

Speaking of dreams- WHAT is up with the whole Egwene thing anyhow? Two princes after the same girl. Every description of Egwene shows her as pretty, but to quote a line- "what? Does she have beer flavored nipples?" Musta been some others girls out there. Seems odd that two princes are after the same girl and three girls are shacking up with the same guy.

Ny- give 'er! She said what I woudda and forgetaboutit. I was reaching critical mass with all this talking and no doing! Reminds me of an analogy I once heard. On the one hand there are excuses, the other- results. You can talk and excuse away anything in the galaxy, but at the end of the day it will not net you any results. Gotta have some action and direction to do that.

John Massey
62. subwoofer
Not sure what the survey is, but I have gone a few rounds with the Mickey Ds Kung Fu Panda on my desk. Sound effects and working action! Judges would take it to a decision.

John Massey
63. subwoofer
What the deuce?! For some inexplicable reason I double posted and here we are with me giving some lame text. grrrrrrrrr. Er... Hi Pablo:) waves
Alice Arneson
64. Wetlandernw
Wolfmage @60 - I agreed that it's possible to successfully incorporate lessons into the story, but... In Harry Potter, the events taking place in the classroom were often central to the plot itself, and the interactions of the characters within the classroom were a vital part of the character development. In Mistborn: The Final Empire, Vin's lessons were the primary setting used to define both the "the team" characters and the magic system. It was an efficient and effective combination of the two, and quite well done, since both had to happen within one volume. Neither of those situations really apply here; I suppose it would be possible to make some of the relationships develop in the class setting, and I guess the non-channelling classes would have been great places for more info-dumps, but neither would really improve the story IMHO. Maybe RJ could have thrown in a few conversational references to classes or lessons to make it clear that they did something besides scrub pots in the Tower, but I've always just assumed that the lessons happened based on what was written.
Alice Arneson
65. Wetlandernw
subwoofer @63 - hey, at least you managed some entertainment in the replacement text. ;)

BTW, I like your "woof". I'd emulate, but with my handle, what would I say? "Drip"? Bah! (Although I'm sure there are those who would think it appropriate...)
66. Alphashard
I really DON'T like Gawayn I mean having a damsel in distress scenario ( I mean this is a dream afterall it's not like he can control it, unlike *cough* Egwene *cough* )

But then he casts Rand as the main Villain and even Lawful Good Galad seems to get the idea that Rand ain't THAT bad. I'm just saying that I wouldn't mind if Gawyn bit the dust.

Also Leigh you are aware of the mental damage you do to yourself by not getting REM sleep right? I mean really 6 days and you weren't completely insane?? I'm surprised you weren't killing people or yourself.
William Fettes
67. Wolfmage
Alphashard @ 66

"I really DON'T like Gawayn I mean having a damsel in distress scenario ( I mean this is a dream afterall it's not like he can control it, unlike *cough* Egwene *cough* )"

To be fair, it's arguably a bit rough to judge someone on their dreams. I wouldn't want someone to do that to me, for sure. But, yes, when you combine all his dubious actions with a dream like this, which suggests to me a somewhat juvenile sensibility, I guess it's easy to be judgemental and have it confirm our pre-existing prejudices.

The fact that he has a self-effacing view of himself should count, if we count the other, but it would go further with me if he applied such modesty in other ways to scrutinise his beliefs before he acts.

"But then he casts Rand as the main Villain and even Lawful Good Galad seems to get the idea that Rand ain't THAT bad. I'm just saying that I wouldn't mind if Gawyn bit the dust."

Yes, it is one of those interesting ironies of the series that the half-brother who is type-cast as the most rigid and inflexible of the pair is easily the best at dealing with moral ambiguity and imperfect information. Whereas the one who is ostensibly more reasonable and human, ends up doing all kind of abhorrent and reckless things based on false certainties when he impaired by imperfect information.

I'm still not sure whether RJ actually intended the kind of visceral alienation I have toward Gawyn, or whether we are actually meant to feel some kind of vacillation about it and excuse him. I know some people do.
Dale schenstrom
68. Dryheat77
I am currently on my 3rd re-read (baby steps, I know). On this one I'm specifically looking for the all of the foreshadowing as normally I'm a very fast paced reader and get a flavor of the books I read instead of digging for all of the facts and connections. This forum and the links provided throughout have opened Jordan's world to a degree I would not have gone to. Now I am able to enjoy these books on differing levels while feeling like a part of a vibrant and diverse community where each of us are bringing our own perceptions to make something that is actually greater than the sum of it's parts. Just thought I'd throw that out there.
Tess Laird
69. thewindrose
Wetlandernw - I was just reponding to sps49 about the little amount of class type learning we see in the books. There is some, but lets face it - the girls are learning by doing and being placed in situations where they are 'forced' to level up. It's called the School of Hard Knocks - they don't have the luxury of sitting in class for the normal amount of time. Do we care that Nyn can't sting two words of the old tongue together, when she just Healed Stilling? That somehow she is going to help Rand even more than when she helped him cleanse Saiden?
Also, I do accept Egwene and Gawyn - seems a bit forced, but I don't really want to read pages about their romance - it's all good:) Besides I want Berelain and Galad to end up together.

Wetlandernw ...nw Wetlandernw ...H2O
err I tried:)
Ron Garrison
71. Man-0-Manetheran
"Egwene as the answer to need." PERFECT! It drove me crazy that they ended up in this room full of angreal and didn't even look around. Now it all makes perfect sense.
john mullen
72. johntheirishmongol
I have always loved OO OO girls because they are usually smart in other ways as well. I never complain about the SG when they are brave, or smart and Egwene is both most of the time.

However, Nynaeve continues to act like a petulant 6 year old. I was surprised she got off so light as to have to scrub pots instead of having to visit the Mistress of Novices. This was also one of the few times I see Elayne lose it as well, usually she operates better politically.

Egwene/Gawyn as a romance doesn't do a lot for me, mostly because I dont like Gawyn.

I am sitting in my living room, and my wife collects dragons so the I get bubbled I can see little flying dragons with our cats chasing after them.
Alice Arneson
73. Wetlandernw
lmelior @1 - Can't believe I've gone this long without answering your survey. When I read it, my first thought was all those sharp knives in the block not 10 feet behind me. Of course, there's always the computer cord to jump up and strangle me, or the trackball to either hit me in the head or try to force its way down my throat. Before the knives can get me. Ack. I'm dead.

Unless, as kab1 suggested, along with the bubble we get the ability to channel. And some instinctive protection weaves, of course. Would be so cool. Just think of the practical uses for weaves of air when dealing with small children and housework. Lannis, bet you could use those too, eh? Hmmmmm... *nods off in happy dreams where nothing is just out of reach any more...*
74. CalaLily
For the survey:

Within arm's reach I have a pair of scissors, a letter opener, a headset with a long, thin, garrote-like rubber cord, two computer mice sporting the same deadly lengths of wire, a giant computer, two monitors, and printer the size of a small boulder, an entire cork board filled with thumbtacks, and a clipboard.

Within a ten foot radius I also have a paint mixer in the form of an electric drill with a two foot long bit ending in a spirally metal head of doom, a box of nails, some drywall and a ceiling fan.

I'm not sure I'd WANT to survive the Bubble O' Ebil that came through this room...
75. CalaLily
And, after re-reading that post several times in an attempt to find and correct any typos lest I look like a COMPLETE moron, I still manage to miss "and printer". -headdesk-
j p
76. sps49

You scare me with the point that we could've endured pages of blackboard descriptions, instructors' hair, and such! But I don't recall much being referenced from Aes Sedai training, either. Just the "rosebud" exercise.

And that was my point- if they weren't gallivanting about, they would probably know very little compared to the well- rounded but mostly shallow ad hoc skills they have. And I don't see any Wise One teaching that doesn't actually happen on page, which just feels odd. To me.
Lindy Brown
77. lbrown
Nicola: So, is being generally unlikable a prerequisite for the Foretelling Talent, or what?

Nicola and Areina are ungrateful wretches. If not for Nynaeve and Elayne, they'd still be on that dock in Samara, maybe even dead by the mobs. Gosh, show some gratitude!
Lindy Brown
78. lbrown
VarnerV @ 20
I am totally with you, and I never saw Galad as being bad. I see Gawyn as completely unworthy of Eg, while Galad is in the position now (as leader of WC in later books) to have enough in his life to not feel ignored by Eg's responsibilities. He also doesn't seem to be petty or jealous, or as prone to jumping to conclusions as Gawyn.
I heart Galad...!

Me, too. I've never considered Galad bad, either. He started a riot to get a boat to get his sister out of Samara safely. And Elayne actually thought that we would turn her over to the Whitecloaks! What has Gawyn done for Elayne, or Egwene for that matter? Nothing yet.
79. alreadymadwithdreams
Eg wanting to learn everything now reminds me of Anakin's slow march to the dark side. So yeah, I don't particularly appreciate how it seems to work out for her a lot. Her and Gawyn was a surprise to me too. Although Galad did comment that Gawyn nearly(sic) went nuts when she disappeared again.

Oh, and “love or hate so great it left room for nothing else”. What a load of crock. Apparently Gawyn had enough left over to hate Rand with a passion on the basis of nothing more than rumor.
80. alreadymadwithdreams
Eg wanting to learn everything now reminds me of Anakin's slow march to the dark side. So yeah, I don't particularly appreciate how it seems to work out for her a lot. Her and Gawyn was a surprise to me too. Although Galad did comment that Gawyn nearly(sic) went nuts when she disappeared again.

Oh, and “love or hate so great it left room for nothing else”. What a load of crock. Apparently Gawyn had enough left over to hate Rand with a passion on the basis of nothing more than rumor.
Helen Peters
81. Helen
Regarding lessons... we had a whole 3 months when the girls were in lessons, a bit more for Elayne as she got to the tower before the rest of them, while Rand and the boys were mucking about with a portal stone to try to get to Falme, waaaay back in book 2. We didn't see the girls at all during this time coz the 3 months was shown as Rand's perceptions of the different realities losing to the DO in one chapter. That's the groundwork lessons done. Then there's more lessons when Verin took them back to the tower, though I don't think they were there too long in this instance, they were still being punished when they left the second time. Someone link to the time line, please. And we know Mo did basic lessons for Eg before she got to the tower, and as it's a competition to find the best/strongest channeller you can bet Elaida gave Elayne lessons before sending her off.

Also back, I think in book 2, that's the only time Eg, El and Min are in the tower, El tells Eg that Gawyn has the hots for her but would not make a move because he thinks she's 'with' Galad.

Min's viewing of Galad and Eg linked, head of WT and head of whitecloaks, political link there.

@75 CalaLily, go grey....
82. Herr_Flick
Te Bubble of ebil:

I would probably be pummeled into submission by my books (that Calvin & Hobbes boxset looks especially lethal), then all my CDs would jump out of their covers and chop me to pieces.
Yea, I'm dead.

On the other side, I think my cat is a permanent bubble of ebil, so I have plenty of training escaping.
John Massey
83. subwoofer
Good morning folks! A few random thoughts here.

The gai'shain approach to not casting off the white robes- will that be the death of the Aiel nation or maybe the rebirth of it back to what it was. The whole WoT thing seems fairly cyclical so maybe this is the Aiel coming full circle.

Bubbles of evil. Hmmmmmmmm. I was thinking about that and as my books are packed away in one of 30 random boxes clearly labeled "books"-fat lot of help that was- I can't quite refer to the text. I was wondering if the SAS play the blame game and accuse Rand of an attack from afar or even TV or the Forsaken. I was also thinking that maybe these "bubbles of evil" are not so random and are actual attacks by some unknown hand of the DO. I mean, of all the places in Randland for a random bubble of evil to pop up- Salidar? Chock full of AS who can actually do something -albeit lame- to combat said bubbles.

@82- either you are pulling a Cosby and talking like Mushmouth(edit-thanks FL) from Fat Albert or you are getting the "b" and "v" keys mixed. Either way, good times.

Funny that too. I thought I was misreading things again. Kinda like AMW thingy on Eggy. Thought he said Atkins slow march to the dark side and I said to myself- self, he has a point. That was a horrible diet thought up by a man clearly gone Saidin mad. Giving up carbs? Sheer lunacy!

John Massey
84. subwoofer
@Wetlandernw- the "woof" at the end isn't me. My dog wanted to put in her 2 cents... or maybe she was saying hi to Hopper.

Antoni Ivanov
85. tonka
subwoofer: Probably these bubbles of evil show somewhere else in places that were not central to the plot and were not mentioned. Actually besides Tear and this here and Perrin's in KOD I don't think we've encountered others bubbles in the books but there are mentions about strange things happening. I think they are just random.

And SAS blamed Sammael/random Forsaken for the attack
John Massey
86. subwoofer
There is that bit where Rand gets stabbed from Fain as he was distracted by that random cloud of evil, and there were stories of "incidents" happening that were blamed on Rand's proximity and Ta'vereness. It's too convenient. Plot seems to drag so- snap- action scene! And then let every body scramble and then finally something comes from it after. Also surprised that the SAS haven't warded their village...

Funny, the SAS blaming the Forsaken. You'd think they'd give the Forsaken more credit than that. If one of the all time powerful baddies who has forgotten more that any of these girls knows now wanted to whoop a$$, I feel they'd come up with something better. Like maybe a mysterious system coming in on a clear day and then a massive lightening attack. Or a huge tidal wave coming from nowhere or a massive sink hole that swallows up all of Salidar. Or a huge boulder, like in Raiders, rolling over the village. I dunno. maybe it's just me.

Antoni Ivanov
87. tonka
I still think it is random. The people blame everything on Rand anyway.

And I really don't think you can ward against bubble of evil.It's done by the Pattern not by other channelers
Lannis .
88. Lannis
subwoofer @ 63... Nice! I think we should all wave to Pablo a little more, eh? Our favourite moderator... okay, really it's a tie between two (I'm looking at you, Torie!) Hi Pablo! Hope your office is nice and tidy. Watch out for those Bubbles of Evil... put those loose staples away!

Wetlander @ 73: WAIT! Nobody told me that we'd be able to channel if the Bubbles hit! I'm envisioning the magical cottage tidy up scene from Sleeping Beauty... that would be sweet! Preschoolers and toddlers come in handy to move light furniture to the kitchen in order to vacuum the living room, but really, to lift the crumbs with saidar would be so much quicker...

sub @ 83: re: Aiel... I think you may have hit on something here... maybe these new forever-gai'shain are the remnant of a remnant? Hrm...
89. tearl
Re: Egwene and Gawyn

In defense of the suddenness of the feelings between them, we've known for three books (seven months story time) that Gawyn is besotted with Eg.

TDR, ch.16, Hunters Three, just after Ny throws G&G out of her room, El tells Eg:

If you want to pay attention to someone, try Gawyn. He is nice enough—most of the time—and he’s besotted with you.

So Eg has had some time to let this stew in her mind and subconscious and now confronted with the absolute verification of Gawyn's feelings she finds she reciprocates. Unexpected, yes. Totally unbelievable, not quite.
Michael Catapano
90. hoping
Suddenly Nicola spoke, sounding half-asleep. “The lion sword, the dedicated spear, she who sees beyond. Three on the boat, and he who is dead yet lives. The great battle done, but the world not done with battle. The land divided by the return, and the guardians balance the servants. The future teeters on the edge of a blade.”

I'm not too clear on the meaning of the second half of Nicola's foretelling. It seems to imply that TG is not the end of the story, although anything after that must pale in comparison.
Also why would the seanchan fight with rand's followers, especially since Mat is Prince of the Ravens?
Is there anything further to explain this?

for the survey
Goats are inherently anti-evil so I hope that I would have protection. Otherwise I might find myself skewered on a goat horn or buried in bales of hay.
Tess Laird
91. thewindrose
In my office, I would be attacked by really weird looking animals, people - I have tons of my kids art work up - they are 6 and 8 now. Also I have a lot of pictures of them - that would be way freaky! And then of course I have the laptop and wireless mouse and key board(not so many wires - yay!). And many different paperweights that I collect - oww.
As I remember, bubbles of evil float along the pattern and 'pop'. They are attracted to ta'vern, but as the seals weaken they will happen more often and more randomly.
And sps49 @76- Indeed, imagine the class scenes - at least there would not be too much about what they are wearing(they all are wearing the same thing). But we would be introduced to all the novices and accepted, and their temperments, all sorts of TV high gossip - pillow friend,girls sneaking off to meet stable hands, who did what pranks - yikes. Glad we didn't have to go there!
Alice Arneson
92. Wetlandernw
thewindrose @ 91 - they are 6 and 8 now. Hah! Mine too.

subwoofer @ 84 Well, there's that cleared up. Thanks. Now as long as the roof doesn't leak, I'll be fine. If you start seeing drips in my posts, you'll know things got really bad here.
93. alreadymadwithtehebil
The laptop can bite. Shivers
John Massey
94. subwoofer
Hmmmm. The people blame everything on the Dragon Reborn. A male channeler. Mixture of fear and awe. Saves us from the DO or will break the world again. I like Bashere's take on it- pity more folks did not have such a pragmatic outlook.

@hoping- Leigh's link to her index clears up much. Still feel short changed by AS reaction. Yes, there was stuff hitting the fan at the time, but when somebody does something so totally out of character and says "Behold..." the AS should be paying some kind of attention. They nail down Ny, El, and company all the time because they find new ways to make whiter whites, somebody is prophesying and it's like- I'll text you back later and you can clue me in. meh.

@Lanis- was thinking about it and it reminds me of the origin of martial arts systems. The staffs and the nunchaku etc were not offensive weopons. They were every day tools adopted to defend peaceful farmers and people from raiders. How did the Aeil become so handy at fighting at everything not a sword? Even bare handed? The knowledge had to come from somewhere. Way of the Leaf bares further study to me.

@Wetlander- roof leaking? Is your namesake literal then? You live in a -wait for it- wet land?- ok, ok, stop throwing fruit, really! Or are you in line for a roof reno? I wouldn't worry about it too much unless you see animals start to pair up and your neighbor down the road starts to take up boat building...

Antoni Ivanov
95. tonka
The great battle done, but the world not done with battle. -

If you think you should see it this way ::

The great battle done (e.i. Tarmon Gaidon finished) but the world not done with battle(e.i. the battle between the Shadow and the Light is not done because the Wheel weaves...)

The land divided by the return( it doesn't really imply that Rand's forces are going to battle with Seanchan but just that the land is divided,the Seanchan will continue to hold whatever they are holding now) ] and the guardians balance the servants. (well I think that's pretty clear)

The future teeters on the edge of a blade (Again the Battle against the Shadow is not done, wait for the next turning of the Wheel because the DO will be back)
William Fettes
96. Wolfmage
I actually wouldn't interpret it that way. I think if you combine Egwene's dream of the impact of Mat's militarised gunpowder, with what will be a greatly diminished capacity for the Shadow after TG, and it arguably points more towards intra-human conflict.

I imagine that even with a total victory, there could conceivably be lots of Trollocks, Myrddraal other Shadowspawn and Dreadlord armies leftover, however, with them lacking proper direction and facing a still-united Randland, I don't see them being the mainstay for the prophesy. The line "the world not done with battle" referring to the rise of the Shadow 3 Ages henceforth, when everyone now alive is a memory of a memory, doesn't really work for me. Such a lengthy gap would give the lie - as the world is done with battle for the foreseeable future.

So, personally I think it will be more along the lines of new consolidation wars, and the birth of the nation state proper. Other generals will surely copy Mat's use of a more modern military logistics model, and his incorporation of ranged weaponry and gunpower, etc., seeing how effective it is / will be. So it would then only be a matter of time.
Skip Ives
97. Skip
This is the link to the FAQ discussion on Nicola's foretelling.

Basically, it draws a line under Rand's three lovers and dumps a boatload of Arthurian imagery on top. It points out that TG while the last battle of the current age, will not be the last battle.

I expect that these are the unresolved strands the series will not address. We won't see the whole of Mat or Perrin's story. I'm not sure that we will see whether or not Rand lives - ending with Rand on a boat, neither alive nor dead is very Arthurian. That said, I hope to see Rand's story resolved at the very least.
Francesco Paonessa
98. ErrantKnave
Re: Eggy

"RJ seems determined for us to acknowledge that Egwene is brilliant and awesome, no matter our opinions of her" -Wolfmage @56

Personally, I don't know what happened, but my opinion of her changed in KoD. All of a sudden I thought she was a really cool character. I really need to read that book again because I can't remember why I had such a change of heart, but that's the impression that remains with me. Books 1-10: Could. Not. Stand. Her. Book 11: ??? Maybe she started earning her keep, or living up to her promise, or whatever.

Re: Survey of Teh Ebil

Being right-handed wouldn't help me if the Dread Pirate Roberts and Inigo Montoya jumped out of their DVD cover.
Skip Ives
99. Skip
ErrantKnave - I think it may be an issue of story-line as much as anything. Egwene's storyline in KOD was pretty cool. In comparison the other storylines with her are info-dumps and character development.

Her ability to jump as high as she has in the AS pecking order come from a combination of her power level and her training with Siuan and the Wise Ones. I'm sure the pattern wants her there too and that always helps.

Am I the only one that thinks the Black Ajah came up with all the crazy rules the AS follow? Most of them only seem to make sure people that know things don't share them or aren't listened to if they do. Just my two cents.
Andrew Lovsness
100. drewlovs
40. Skip

See, its not just me; though it did take a re-read to pick up the clues Jordan dropped about the up coming relationship between Eg and Gawyn. I think what is throwing a lot of people is this love connection is a lot more subtle than any of the others such as Lan and Nyn, Rand and Elayne, etc.

My first "true love" happened due to my first girlfriend's interest in me, but after finding out her feelings, I too found that I had feelings for her. I had just never considered them before. I guess its why this out-of-the-blue relationship never bothered me. Egwene, we know from other books, thought both the brothers were good looking, but when she found out Gawyn's feelings, she had to consider her own. I found this, like many other Jordan takes on the way humans interact, very realistic.

66. Alphashard

I think the way Gawyn feels about Egwene, with Rand being the old boyfriend, might also have something to do with Rand being the villian in his dreams. That being said, I really like how Wolfmage deals with the 2 half-brothers too.
Andrew Lovsness
101. drewlovs
83. subwoofer

Bubbles of evil... this attack always made me wonder. See, I always thought the bubbles went through the pattern and gathered around ta’veren. That being said, none of the three ta’veren were present for this one, obviously.

Now that I think about it, there were other bubbles that had struck without a ta’veren present; but they WERE found by one of the three TR men just after they have happened.

Here is when the experts will fill me in other references to other bubbles that have struck Randland and are mentioned in passing by minor characters...
102. Noren
Never got the Egwene hate myself,but then I alternate between indifference and worship to the five women anyway.And I do like the two brothers,even though they're both walking examples of the Law of Unintended Consequences:)

My take on Nicola's Foretelling is that it was just another case of AS being sneaky/hoarding knowledge;there's no point letting everybody know you think something's important.And it served an extra purpose as well;if you could keep it secret it would protect a new source of intelligence.At least it would have if Nicola had kept her mouth shut;somehow it didn't occur to her the Shadow might take a dim view of someone who could reveal secret plans.See what Alviarin almost did to Elaida...

Nynaeve's outburst was AWESOME.And accurate.I suspect the reason the AS were so quiet during and after her outburst was because she was the first person to actually say it out loud.I'm pretty certain they'd been rationalizing their behavior as just being sensible.That's probably why she got kitchen work as opposed to a visit to the Mistress of Novices;she was being punished for discourtesy and a lack of self-control, not for faulty analysis:).

Oh,and I suspect no one living in a modern society would survive a bubble of evil.One word:electricity.From your cellphone,your iPod,computer...
Alice Arneson
103. Wetlandernw
drewlovs @ 101 - I'm not going to cite any examples at the moment, but the concept as explained by Moiraine (iirc) is that as the bubbles drift through the pattern, if they come across a ta'veren they'll attach & burst right there. If not, they'll do so somewhere, eventually. So a significant proportion will erupt near one or more of the boys, and we see those. The rest will pop somewhere, and we'll only see them if they happen to pop near someone else the story is following. I have a vague recollection of hearing about some, but again, there wouldn't be as many of them out in the general populace anyway.

Did that make sense?

And FWIW, if anyone cares, I pre-ordered my copy of tGS from Borders for 17.99 (USD). Not sure if Costco would beat that, but in theory I'll get it right away without having to make time in my schedule to go shopping on the 27th. Tuesdays won't be good timing for me once school starts. :)
Susan Brownhill
104. SusanB
My 2 cents.... i don't have a problem with Eg & Gawyn being in love. I do have a problem with them having a "love for all ages". If anyone from the books has that kind of love I would vote for Nyn & Lan. They have really been set up as having that kind of love.

As for the bubble of evil. I would be strangled by diapers (preferably the clean ones) or smothered by stuffed animals.
Skip Ives
105. Skip
drewlovs @101

I figure that a pile of channelers would draw those bubbles as well as a ta'veren. I think of the pattern the same way you see the fabric of space time, and ta'veren are big gravity wells and AS would be a smaller pull, but put enough of them together and they'd draw their share of bad mojo.

I always pictured Perrin as shorter, but he's around my size, I even had a beard when I played Rugby, though he carries about 20 ponds more than I did at my heaviest playing weight. This guy is pretty much the exact height and weight of Perrin. And for those wondering, Hooker is a position in Rugby.
John Massey
106. subwoofer
Here at home I have a whatnot shelving unit that has a lot of... brickabrack on it that, upon reflection- could do some serious harm. And of course, my namesake at my feet could be possessed and gnaw off my ankle.... nawwww! Too cute.

As for love of the ages- Bela and Mandarb- bar none.

john mullen
107. johntheirishmongol
I remember Moiraine describing the bubbles of evil as escaping from DO prison. The way I took it was to mean as the seals were breaking and the Forsaken escaped, the bubbles of evil were a natural consequence of the concentated evil since the DO had been imprisoned for so many years. From TSR, I believe.
108. Shadow_Jak
As for "Love of the Aged", I vote for Reene Harfor and Halwin Norry.

Oh wait, you said love of the "Ages"!

109. Shadow_Jak
Siuan drew back the hand that had delivered the pinch without any try at stealth. “I don’t take well to threats, girl. You know as well as I do what Elaida said; you saw it before anyone here.”

I had always taken this as confirmation that Siuan was the one watching from the window. But I was thinking she had addressed this comment to Nynaeve. Don't have my book in front of me at the moment.
Alice Arneson
110. Wetlandernw
Shadow_Jak @ 109 - I always assumed Siuan was referring to what they had seen in Elaida's study in TAR on one of their earlier info-search trips. Didn't they see that in the stuff on her desk? I don't have my books handy either, but I'm pretty sure.
111. LynnOH
I too work in a lab! Bubble of evil with all those tubes of blood and cups of pee--now that's a waking nightmare I'll live come Monday.

R.Rife better lock that yellow shawl away......
Tess Laird
112. thewindrose
Alright - to clear Siuan from being 'watcher in the Window'(which I was leaning for - her or Leane to keep up on what was going on).
From chap 15 A Pile of Choss - (whoops I mean Sand) LoC:
"I still don't know see why they're asking for more time," Nynaeve muttered. "They know what they have to do." Siuan kept silent, but Nynaeve's eyebrows rose slowly. "You didn't know their answer."
"I do now." Siuan clipped the words, and said something under her breath about "weak-kneed fools." Elayne agreed silently.
Tess Laird
113. thewindrose
Shawdow_Jak @109-
The passage you quote is from Elayne & Nynaeve going through Elaida's mail. She sent out a missive saying all is forgiven come back to the Tower.
114. Parsifal
Regarding the upcoming seige/war betwixt the rebels and the White Tower, you're all forgetting the oaths. It's a detente- if no one throws the first proverbial stone, no one need defend themselves.Unless the rest of the black ajah want to be painted with targets.
So it then becomes a serious tabulation of who's got the bigger heavy's powerwise? And if there's no way of knowing, why risk war to the point of death and fracturing the already splintered Tower?
Except thanks to Elayne and Egwene, all those unbounded Windfinders, Wise Ones, and Kin might come into play. Hmmmmmm.......

Given the situation by the end of KOD, it's safe to say a more political resolution will result before we get to see an all out battle royale of Aes Sedai.
115. Parsifal
And as for Nicola's foretelling, the second part,
it seems simple enough that it's merely implying that there will be 2 battles- namely one with the Seanchan and the other being TG. It's reinforced with the description that immediately follows, regarding the return and the guardians etc.
William Fettes
116. Wolfmage
I'm personally not persuaded that the forthcoming Seanchan-Tower invasion could really qualify as "the" Great Battle. More like "a" big/great battle. Giving it that title seems a touch grandiose, when TG is around the corner and we have other likely battles, such as Logain's usurpation of the BT, and whatever else happens - which are arguably just as important to the Light. In your favour, I suppose is the fact that there has been so much build up, spread over many books, and it may very well trigger a resolution to the SAS split finally.

That said, I must admit TG being called the Last Battle does sort of create a surface thematic tension with the prophesy, so who knows.
John Massey
117. subwoofer
I dunno, there is this Gawyn guy running about the country side with this group of boys called the Younglings. These boys could make things go sideways in a hurry. There is also the factor of Mat catching up with the Band. If anyone could cut to the chase with the AS war it is him. I could see his big test being to sneak into TV and rescue Eggy. Maybe in the process have a rematch with Gawyn one on one and whoop his but again, all the while telling him he's a dolt and that Rand had nothing to do with Morgase.

Of course, if Rand did catch up with Gawyn, it would be turnip time(one can always dream).

What Leigh had to say:
The "great battle" line could refer to the Last Battle, perhaps saying that even after TG, the struggle between the Light and Shadow continues, or that there will be more fighting afterwards, or maybe there'll be a big battle BEFORE TG. The land divided by the return refers to the Seanchan invasion (Randland is rapidly becoming divided into Rand-controlled areas and Seanchan-controlled areas). The guardians and the servants are the Asha'man and the Aes Sedai. The last line is just metaphorical melodramatics - this war is crucial, duh.


On the other hand, I think Mat might also be the key to this one. Maybe as Prince of the Ravens, Mat could stop the Seanchan before they become enthusiastic and start gesturing wildly with pointy objects.

On a side note, I see that everyone must be wrapped up in either back-to-school stuff or end-of-the-summer stuff. Just sayin' because usually we'd be in the high hundreds if not well into the 2 hunny's by now. Or it could be that there is not much to grasp in these chapters. Or it could be that we've said all there is to say. Or it could be that nobody has dropped a bomb starting about sex, religion, politics or spanking.


Edit- Good morning Fiddler :)
Sydo Zandstra
118. Fiddler
There is a theory, I think John Novak aired it first, that Tarmon Gai'don is not a set Big Last Battle that we are heading to. Instead, TG started at tEotW, and the whole story we have been reading is it.

I always liked this theory. It makes sense to me. It doesn't change the fact that there wil be Huge Battles With Trollocs And Myrddraal in the end.

Remember the Game Moridin is playing in early PoD. It involves Rand, obviously, but it also screams long time planning.

About Egwene, I just never cared about her. Some people call me an Elayne hater (which I am not) because I got ticked about some of her behaviour. But that means I care about the character. Elayne annoys me at times, but I can see why, and I love reading her stuff (except for the bath scene).

I just can't do the same with Egwene. I know she is cool, doing the War on WT thing, and how she acts while in custody in the WT. But I just don't care about her.

Maybe it's because in all of the whole WoT communication thing, Egwene is the one who should be blamed, since she has access to about everybody important and doesn't do anything with it.
John Massey
119. subwoofer
I still refer to my beer flavored nipples analogy. I can't see how Eggy is such hot stuff that 2 princes are infatuated with her. From everything out there, I get the impression that there are AS, novices, Aiel, you name it- one of Siuan's aforementioned fish monger's wives- that could attract the fancy of the 2 G's. Berelain even. Eggy should of been paired up with one of Sorilea's Aiel that was picked out for her. Then that would tie the Aiel to the Tower.

Was also thinking of the love of the ages Ny & Lan, Rand & his 3, Perrin & Faile, Siuan & Bryne, Mat & Tuon and anybody I left out, er Bela and her many suitors. RJ immerses us in an end of the world scenario but humanizes it with relationships which is what keeps it going. Otherwise, what is the point of all the fighting if there is nothing worth saving?
Lannis .
120. Lannis
Noren @ 102: re: Nicola's foretelling... good call, I never thought of that. There's a good chance that Anaiya didn't want people realising what was going on there, and deliberately didn't make a fuss, only saying she'd make a note of it later...

Wetlander @ 103: re: Tuesdays and timing... drop one off at school and the rest are on a Costco field trip! ;)

Re: Bubbles of Evil... I know this is a little premature, as we have the rest of today and the majority of tomorrow for the survey results, but as subwoofer said, things are pretty slow... so I thought I'd compile our list now, and we can add any more later...

Our Bubbles of Evil contain:
computer equipment (monitors, laptops, printers...)
plate glass
phone cords/computer cords
plenty of random office supplies/equipment
headphones and their cords
candy jar and contents (gasp!)
millions of test tubes/lab glassware (some containing urine and blood--ew!)
bunsen burners
random lab equipment
steak knives and a knife block
a ridiculous amount of Legos
paint mixer (drill style)
ceiling fan
plenty of books
CDs and DVDs (and their cases)
weird children's artwork (by normal children--just weird images)
paperweights (Thunk!)
electricity (Zzzzap!)
diapers (hopefully clean ones!)
stuffed animals
nicknacks and brickabrack on shelves
perhaps a yellow shawl

various action figures, including:
Miis (a whole army)
a Bob's Big Boy figure
Kung Fu Panda figure (with sound effects--that in itself is rather scary...)
collectible dragon statues

Bubbles of Evil would not include:
sub's dog (woof!)

Needless to say, I think we're all toast...
John Massey
121. subwoofer
@Lannis *LOL*

Good times!

It's the test tubes filled with foreign objects that has me concerned. Let CSI deal with that one and figure stuff out. "HOW'D he die?!"
Lannis .
122. Lannis
@ sub... "HOW'D he die?!" BAHAHAHAhahaha!
123. alreadymadwithlaptops
Cause of death appears to be....

Spanking by laptop Shivers
craig thrift
124. gagecreedlives
Ok massive d and p’ing going on here folks so I apologise in advance

Rand being a height and size of Gawyn isn’t that big a stretch. Im 6’4 and if I was standing next to somebody 6’6” there is a difference to us but if somebody 5’8” was looking up at us she would say we are both roughly the same size.

Plus its Gawyns heroic dream and the hero is always only as heroic as the baddy is bad. So of course Gawyn made Rand more monsterous then what he was.

“Bubble of Evil: I just looked around at the room I’m typing this in to see how many things I could be attacked by if they all got animated by Teh Ebil, and all I have to say is my ass would be TOAST. It may be time for a garage sale.”

May I suggest if it worries you that much you should stop posting in the kitchen ?

Hi Midas *waves* Welcome to the asylum

Hmmm for the survey I would have my friends wii steering wheels, a couple of slabs of empty beer and some Italian stereotypes running me over in go karts.
Antoni Ivanov
125. tonka
About Gawyn's height.Egwene misjudged a little. Besides what gagecreedlives said. She has never seen Gawyn and Rand in the same room after all.

RJ is very good at making his character make wrong assumptions for some reasons (like lack of info or emotional state, etc.) Like Rand misjudged Taim's age. Nynaeve thought that she can channel the half of what 10 Aes Sedai can plus sa'angreal.There are other examples and I bet if you think you find some other yourself.
craig thrift
126. gagecreedlives
and if subwoofer gets his own trademark sign off I will get my own too

no fair
William Fettes
127. Wolfmage
gagecreedlives @ 124

"Plus its Gawyns heroic dream and the hero is always only as heroic as the baddy is bad. So of course Gawyn made Rand more monsterous then what he was."

I'm not sure that does much to mitigate Gawyn's lameness. The point isn't that he's guilty of exaggerating Rand. The dream is a kind of window into Gawyn's broader dysfunction. I love it how this is basically a little morality play he's cooked up in his subconscious, as a kind of trashy bit of wish-fulfilment (so much for love for the ages).

Moreover, it's not like the Rand in the dream is a version of Rand gone bad. As far as we see, he's a sneering cardboard cut-out villain with no plausible motives other than to feed Gawyn's hatred and act as an obstacle to Egwene. He's an unexamined black box of evil who exists so Gawyn can get on with chopping off his head, prior to scoring the girl.

The beauty of it is that this is basically the real Gawyn in a nutshell - a set of basically noble sensibilities so clouded by neurotic passions and unexamined assumptions, that they carry you off somewhere incomprehensible to the reality based community. Gawyn would have it that Rand, the emotionally complex champion of light, who would rather die himself than kill a woman, is this cartoon supervillain. And, Egwene, the strong, confident and independent ubergirl is a helpless damsel in distress.
craig thrift
128. gagecreedlives
Im not a big Gawyn lover but cut the guy a break here. First of all its his dream and he can fantasize all he damn well wants.

And the guy has fallen for a good looking, intelligent women who has the potential to be one of the most powerful women in the world.

Plus his older brother who has saved his life twice and is so good looking he makes aes sedai go weak at the knees and can match the warders stroke for stroke likes her and the ex is the dragon reborn. I can forgive the guy for feeling a insecurity.

And honestly is there a person here who in their late teens or early twenties never felt insecure about themselves compared to a rival love interest, ex partner or even felt unworthy of the other person justified or not.

And while we are being honest can any guy on these posts ever claim to have not had a fantasy where they are the knight in shining armour no matter how *head desky* the women might think it.

*edit* Ive just realised its 2am monday morning and I have to get up for work in 3 hours. Plus I have been drinking all weekend (my birthday :P)So unless anything I just said made sense feel free to ignore it all
Tess Laird
129. thewindrose
Well Happy Birthday gagecreedlives! May be a good day to call in sick from the sounds of it:)
John Massey
130. subwoofer
@GCL- dude! Happy b-day! Why toss in the towel now though? What's 3 hours between friends? Reminds me of a Lovejoy sayin'- if you have to put your hand up a horse's a$$... er, you can fill in the blanks. Classic thing though- alnighter on the B-day. Makes it memorable. 'Course, the other side to that is going to bed and waking up and you are still drunk...ahhh, memories.

'K with the spin you give it Gawyn gets some slack, but I gotta go with the last little bit that Wolfmage was going on about. Rand just isn't like that. I bet many people think he was- the way the girls were up in his grill at the inn then Rand disabused them of that notion. At the end of the day Rand still has to overcome the notion that he is a male who can channel. There is 3000 years of stigma attached to that and no amount of "he's the savior" is going to change people's initial perception or knee jerk reaction. It is like overcoming prejudice in parts of the country. People can't see past the color of your skin.

We all know that deep down, Rand is still Rand. That is why he has a thing for Min for instance. Because she still sees that side of him, despite the body mods.

131. Shadow_Jak
Wetlandernw @110 and thewindrose @ 113

Whoops. Yeah that must have been a reference to Elaida's mail.

on the other hand,
thewindrose @112
Alright - to clear Siuan from being 'watcher in the Window'(which I was leaning for - her or Leane to keep up on what was going on)...
"I still don't know see why they're asking for more time," Nynaeve muttered. "They know what they have to do." Siuan kept silent, but Nynaeve's eyebrows rose slowly. "You didn't know their answer."
"I do now." Siuan clipped the words, and said something under her breath about "weak-kneed fools." Elayne agreed silently.

I've got to go back and re-read that whole section. I'm still leaning towards Siuan being the watcher. The Watcher may not have heard the conversation, but she did see Nynaeve snooping. Siuan does not seem surprised that Nynaeve knows that answer.
132. Shadow_Jak
Regarding the whole height thing. From Egwene's perspective of about 5'2", a couple of guys well over 6' are indeed about the same height
133. Freelancer

That's Mushmouth, not Russell.


Mat and Rand ran from one in Rhuidean as well.


Have a cigar. Absolutely, much of the unreasonable and arbitrary "traditions as strong as law" of the Tower are Ishamael's influence, as is their separation from society at large. certainly the Breaking colored the common people's view of ALL channelers, but given their long lives and their ability to assert authority, the Aes Sedai should have overcome that in not too many decades.

Instead they become unnecessarily and increasingly insular, mysterious, and unknown to the public over the years. And internally, the solidification of ajahs into permanent political and functional factions that keep things from each other, that are primed for adversarial dealings with each other, should not be the result of women who live for centuries, who have incredible training in history and philosophy, and who ostensibly have the same guiding principle of Victory for the Light. All of that foolishness is an effect, and Ishamael is the cause.

Gawyn-hate, blah blah. Egwene-hate, blah blah. Gawyn-Egwene disbelief, blah blah blah. I'll take Gawyn and/or Egwene over three Galads any day of the week. Gawyn was trying his utmost to stay where he believed he had the best chance of helping his sister, even after he was sure that certain Aes Sedai were hanging him out to dry. He doesn't know she's in Caemlyn yet, and last he knew, Rand was there. Galad walked away and joined "the enemy" as far as any channeling female relatives are concerned.
craig thrift
134. gagecreedlives
Thank you thewindrose and subwoofer. Would of loved to call in sick today but I started yesterdays festivities with the dark one (my boss) so I don’t think she would of let me get away with it. Especially after she told me not to get to drunk.

And I promise to try and make this my last comment about Gawyn. It’s a dream and as far as I know he doesn’t have any dream walking abilities what so ever. So can he really be held responsible for the dreck that his subconscious pulls out.
Alice Arneson
135. Wetlandernw
gagecreedlives @ 128 & 134

I'm rather with you on Gawyn's dream... Hey, it's a DREAM. And you have to admit he lives in a world where a swordfight with the (perceived) bad guy over the fair damsel is actually a real-life thing. (In our world, we only get to do that sort of thing in video games and fantasies.) So in a sense, what seems "over-the-top" to us is... well, not so much. And his dream shows his own insecurities as much as his desires.

Okay, now his later behavior when he finds Egwene in Cairhien, that's... something to talk about when we get there. Here? Nah, can't find it in me to be hard on the boy.
136. LynnOH
Happy Birthday Gagecreedlives!

Hoping you were given a bookstore gift card as a gift.

Or maybe a little "hair of the dog"?
137. Shadow_Jak
Freelancer @133

Gawyn-hate, blah blah. Egwene-hate, blah blah. Gawyn-Egwene disbelief, blah blah blah. I'll take Gawyn and/or Egwene over three Galads any day of the week....
Galad walked away and joined "the enemy" as far as any channeling female relatives are concerned.

Excellent point. Among our cast of Good-Guys and Gals... among all the many, many, various and sundry bad decisions... that has be near the top.
Roger Powell
139. forkroot
Missed the first cut on the survey. I'd have a tough time with the 30" flat screen monitor that I have here in my home office. If I could fight that off, there's a bronze statue of a shark that could crush my skull. Plus, err, um... too much clutter.

OTOH - This time next week, I'll be reading these posts on my iPhone from a beach in Hawaii. Not sure how the iPhone could attack me if I have a firm grip on it. I guess I could just chuck it into the water if I had to.

It's interesting to speculate on the language that a Randland insurance company might have to put in policies. We have disclaimers in our world for wars and terrorism, they might have to have disclaimers for bubbles of evil.
Lannis .
140. Lannis
@ forkroot... that's providing you could prove it was a Bubble of Evil... just imagine the loop holes the insurance company would have...

"So you say your chairs chased you around the room...? But how do we know that that's how you became a walking bruise? Trampled by a herd of chairs? Really? Sounds like a load of choss..."
141. whatusername
Did anyone else get the impression that Anaiya wanted it to be a forsaken attack?

ie - perhaps a hint that she wanted to start involving Rand/BT in their circles - and that they needed an excuse to do so.
Ron Garrison
142. Man-0-Manetheran
tonka @ 95:

Well said. However, re. "The land divided by the return" I took that as the return of the Dragon. Seanchan didn't even occur to me. Have to think on that one. Mat with the Seanchans, however, doesn't seem to give creedence to that idea. Why would Mat fight Rand?

After TG, the DO may be diminished for an age, but mankind will still fight amongst themselves. The arrival of peace, doesn't mean an end to war. In peacetime, small greedy people usually see an opportunity to increase their territory, wealth, etc.

History has also shown us that with a lot of leftover soldiers who only know that skill, they make trouble as well.

Peace is a "means", not an end. And as Ghandi said, "There are no ends, only means." The Wheel would seem to agree.
Tasneem Gould
143. Latecomer
Nothing useful to add so just popping in to say "Happy Birthday!" to GCL
Joseph Blaidd
144. SteelBlaidd
I think a lot of people are misunderstanding what the Wise Ones are saying is the cause of Egwene's inadvertent visit to Gawyn's dream.

There are two parts.

1. Try to look in on the dreams of some one with strong feelings about you or you about them, and you will be sucked in.

2. If the emotion is extremely strong, “love or hate so great it left room for nothing else”,you get pulled in just by noticing.

Part one tells us that the emotion doesn't have to be mutual. If only one party has strong feelings that is sufficient. Part two says that the issue is not quality of emotion, just intensity.

Here's why this matters. Consider Romeo and Juliet, does any one really think that they would have made it past their first anniversary even without all the extraneous complications of attempting to sneak their nuptials past their parents. The emotions involved we're very intense but not built on much of a foundation. In fact Romeo makes a good model for our boy Gawyn, very emotional and prone to doing things in the heat of passion without a whole lot of forethought. Another good example would be Gwenevere and Lancelot.

Contrast Lan and Nynaeve whose relationship is just as passionate but more like Jakob and Rachel
craig thrift
145. gagecreedlives
“We have disclaimers in our world for wars and terrorism, they might have to have disclaimers for bubbles of evil.”

Could you imagine the premiums you would have to pay if you are, or are directly in constant contact with a Ta’veren. Wow


Unfortunately not. My friends and family have the opinion that I have quite enough books. I obviously disagree. But evidently I don’t have enough socks and undies.

As for the hair of the dog. Well that might have to wait until I finish work.


Colour me completely jealous. Have fun in Hawaii


I did get that impression but I thought it due to more of an over inflated sense of importance. I think they would rather be attacked by a forsaken and recognised as an opponent then ignored.

And once again thank you everybody for the kind birthday wishes
Bill Reamy
146. BillinHI
forkroot@139 Thanks for helping to boost our in-the-tank tourism-based economy. Now if only a few hundred thousand more would join you, our idiot politicians wouldn't raise our too-high taxes even more! Come out to the westside and see my favorite beach at Makaha.
Hurin Smells
147. HurinSmells
Thanks for the reference! I was hoping someone had read that comment. Being from the land of Oz, I always come to the party late, so most of the time anything I have to say has already been said by someone else!

On the plus side, we have talking apple trees. On the down side, they're really mean.
148. Stone Dog
I don't really buy into this Gawyn dream thing. This dream is far too structured and reads more like a waking fantasy than a geniune dream. (and rather a pathetic one at that)
149. isriam
About the survey - I collect swords. Enough said. I would be toast - or confetti.
Maiane Bakroeva
150. Isilel
Freelancer @133:

Galad walked away and joined "the enemy" as far as any channeling female relatives are concerned.

Ditto. Much as I decry Elayne's treatment of him, I really can't follow his thought processes there. I mean, no matter what WCs started as, at this time they were pretty much dedicated to killing female channelers (and this may have been one of their original purposes too) and anybody who as much as looked at them crosswise.
Galad, having been raised at the royal court of Andor would have certainly known all this. How does it square with his affection for Morgase and Egwene and sense of duty to Elayne?

Re: Gawyn - well, Egs discovering the depth of his feelings must have been very flattering and may have brought her subconscious attraction out. He seems to be her "type", after all. And also she discovers a powerful physical chemistry between them in this dream - so yea, why not. Seems realistic enough to me.

Wetlandernw @59:

did you really, seriously want to read long chapters about novice and Accepted classes while in the WT, getting to know Elayne's brothers ditto,

I know I am weird ;), but I'd have rather seen that than some other, more extraneous (IMHO) stuff we did get. In fact, I quite like channeling lessons in TGH and Rand's swordsmanship training.

But even short mentions that various main characters have been working on their skills would have been much appreciated. Like, that Lan had been teaching Perrin to use that axe and continuing Rand's training in the months between TGH and TDR. Or that Verin had been teaching the SGs channeling ditto.
This way their growth into badassness would have felt less contrived to me personally and it would be easier to believe that the characters are deserving of their successes, rather than just fated to win. YMMV.

Also, at this point it is difficult to take anybody who says that something must be learned, that something shouldn't be done or that the characters should slow down, etc. seriously, because so far this has been consistently been proven bunk in every case.
Therefore I really can't sympathize with the WOs here and strongly feel that they have wasted a lot of Egs time and left her much more vulnerable to the Shadow's shenanigans than she could have been. And don't start me on them not teaching Rand what they could of T'AR! IMHO, it was a crime.
Tess Laird
151. thewindrose
Lannis @140:
"So you say your chairs chased you around the room...? But how do we know that that's how you became a walking bruise? Trampled by a herd of chairs? Really? Sounds like a load of choss..."
Ha ~ That's funny!

HurinSmells - Sounds like you have decendents of Old Man Willow down under.

whatusername - SAS would want to think a Forsaken has acknowleged them as a potenial threat.
Doesn't anyone think it odd that Moiraine recognised a bubble of evil right away, and the SAS Sisters thought - ohh attack by a Forsaken. (Just goes to show that Moiraine is MoA!)

forkroot - I AM Jealous - Have fun!

gagecreedlives -Yeah, it would be a bit hard to call in if the boss is well aware of what you are up too! Hope you made it though work OK.
Marcus W
152. toryx
Isilel @ 150:

How does it square with his affection for Morgase and Egwene and sense of duty to Elayne?

I've always thought that Galad and Gawyn essentially made the same choice, but different in specifics. Both thought that the White Tower was using Elayne for its own purposes without regard to her safety. Gawyn placed the blame on Siuan Sanche, so he fought to keep her imprisoned. Galad placed the blame on the Tower itself and decided to join with those who opposed the Tower. Given that the Tower places itself above Kings and Queens and interferes with the sovereinty of those rulers, opposing the Tower actually fits with his loyalty to the ruler of Andor.

Neither man ever seemed to believe that Elayne would actually be Aes Sedai. I think they imagined that she'd get a little bit of training and then be returned to Andor with a ring and a pat on the head like Morgase.

Maybe Galad thought that her loyalty would be to Morgase and Andor first and the Tower second. In his mind, that'd be the way it should be. Joining the Children put himself on the side of Light and against the Tower (master manipulators for their own purposes). His higher loyalties to Queen and Daughter-Heir of Andor would not be compromised.
Roger Powell
153. forkroot
But even short mentions that various main characters have been working on their skills would have been much appreciated.
Agreed. It wouldn't have taken too many sentences. RJ could have replaced some of the sentences where the SGs (esp Elayne) are decided what to wear, or how much bust to expose. :-)

Confidential to BillinHI@146
We'll be on the Big Island and Kauai this year, but we'll be on the west side of Oahu next year so Makaha is a delayed thumbs-up.

It's a measure of how much I enjoy this community that I will actually follow the posts during this upcoming vacation. You guys (that means Leigh and posters) constantly amaze me with the fresh perspectives you bring to my favorite fantasy series.

I've got some vacation reading to do too: All three Mistborn novels. Should make the plane flights a lot more tolerable.
Tess Laird
154. thewindrose
Also - another thought on Galad. He joins the Children - however he does not seem to be a fervent follower, i.e. he definetly doesn't think Aes Sedei are evil incarnate. When he becomes Lord Captain Commander one of the first things he does is say that they need to align with the Aes Sedei to fight the Dark One.
Rob Munnelly
155. RobMRobM
Forkroot - You'll enjoy Mistborn, especially the first book. I particularly enjoyed the party scenes (I'm not kidding). I also just finished Warbreaker, which I found enjoyable (if a bit slow moving), I just started Elantris yesterday, and my ten year old just got the first Alcatraz book out of the library. I should have the entire BS oeuvre done by 10/27. Rob
Cian Grogan
156. Caine09
Ah Egwene, you poor misguided soul. Life must be tough when you are both impatient and bessoted about some bloke. Will you ever get what you want??

I just "love" chapters that tell you nothing new, espicailly the one's with those chicks in them, because all you get then is non-stop bitching.
James Jones
157. jamesedjones
144 SteelBlaidd

Thank the Light Nyneave doesn't have an ugly sister. :P
April Vrugtman
158. dwndrgn
I know this is a totally extraneous thought but as I was reading Nicola's foretelling, I though the bit about 'the return' was the remnant of a remnant of the Aiel returning to the Waste. I never even considered the Seanchean. Hm.
Maiane Bakroeva
159. Isilel
Toryx @152:

Galad placed the blame on the Tower itself and decided to join with those who opposed the Tower.

Except that the WCs think that any channeler and any woman trained in the Tower are also deserving of death. And since El and Egs and even Morgase are both...yea.
Women can't even dispense herbs in Amadicia without substantial risk.
Also, The interests of WCs are aligned with those of Amadicia too much for a loyal Andorman with Galad's level of training and education to be able to delude himself that there is no conflict of loyalty and duty.

As to Gawyn, I'll talk about my issues with his choices when he re-appears in the course of LoC re-read.
Roger Powell
160. forkroot
Hmmm slow day ... I've gone to the airport, flown to a different state, arrived at the customer site, (and snuck in a quick look at the postings...sssh) and there's only six more postings since forkroot@153.

OK...I'll say it for everyone ... **twitch**
Marcus W
161. toryx
Isilel @ 159:

Except that the WCs think that any channeler and any woman trained in the Tower are also deserving of death.

I don't know. I used to think that way about the WC too, but given Morgase's choice to go to Amadecia when she was on the run, and the way Pedron Niall wasn't particularly eager to see her killed for training in the Tower, I wonder how much of the "Die Witches Die!" rhetoric of the WC was mainstream and how much was driven solely by the more vocal extremists.

If every sociopolitical/ religious group was judged solely by the actions of their zealots, no one in their right mind would ever be a fill-in-the-blank.

Galad joined the Children because he admired their idealism. And given the way things turned out, he obviously did it because it was the right thing to do. He's still ahead of Gawyn in that.

Back on topic: I wasn't surprised that Gawyn and Egwene ended up as a couple, but I still think they went from young crush to "OMG I love you forever!!!" awfully fast. But then, that's pretty much true of every new relationship in this series. One minute Nynaeve and Lan were all stocic with the, "Ooh, you're good and that's kinda sexy" and the next, "star crossed lovers, kept eternally apart, *sigh*." Not to mention, Elayne with the, "I spent five minutes with Rand al'Thor and he was, like, so dreamy I might just steal him from you, Egwene, even if you were practically betrothed since birth."

Hell, then there's Egwene and Rand's childish pigtails in the inkwell love that lasted for years until suddenly, "Nah, I'm so over him. You can have him Elayne."

Let's face it: All these relationships are high school romances.
Rob Munnelly
162. RobMRobM
Fork - I'll second that twitch and raise you. **twitch, twitch**.
163. Freelancer

Makaha, where the insane go to surf. Love it there, except for a few too many rocks.

RE: Nicola's Foretelling. "The Return" is the Seanchan Corenne. This matches up with the Aelfinn answer to Rand regarding surviving the Last Battle:
The north and the east must be as one. The west and the south must be as one. The two must be as one. If you would live, you must die.

This hasn't come close to being fulfilled yet, even in part. But much is in place for it to happen. The Borderlanders in Andor; Elayne's claim to the Sun Throne; DR Regents in place in Tear, Mayene, and indirectly Ghealdan. These could easily be brought together (Bashere's help will be required) to join the north and east. The Seanchan already hold much of the west and south, just short of Illian. The third part comes when Rand and Mat get together, or else Rand gets to meet Tuon, and the Corenne submits to the DR.
Maiane Bakroeva
164. Isilel

given Morgase's choice to go to Amadecia when she was on the run, and the way Pedron Niall wasn't particularly eager to see her killed for training in the Tower

Niall has been shown to be very exceptional for a Whitecloak though - we didn't see anybody else sharing this stance apart from Galad himself. And I have a distinct feeling that Morgase wasn't firing with all her neurons when she went to Amadicia (and her entourage agreed with me).

As to idealism, what idealism? WCs destroy property and even kill unimportant people if they can get away with it, at the slightest pretext. I am just re-reading TFoH and Bryne and his veterans, think that "Mara" (who they don't know is Siuan) would be in serious danger of hanging for merely drawing WC attention to herself. And they should know.

Idealistic book here or there, given Galad's position and education he couldn't have been unaware of realities of WC mode of operation.
Kristina Blake
165. kab1
@150/153 Agreed. I too would have liked some mention of more training. what's a couple more sentences/paragraphs in light of the length of these books?!?! and also agree that these sentences could have gone in and clothes selections out!

@forkroot. I am sooo jealous!
Did you get started on mistborn on the plane? what do you think? I liked them, but I enjoyed Elantris more. Haven't read warbreak yet, but maybe I'll pick it up since Rob liked it.
I'm currently rereading A Song of Ice and Fire, which is really quite fun, since I've never done a reread of it. I literally have zero recollection of what happens to many characters!
Elroy Skimms
166. elroyskimms
kab1 @ 165

I'm currently rereading A Song of Ice and Fire, which is really quite fun, since I've never done a reread of it. I literally have zero recollection of what happens to many characters!

They all die.

Rob Munnelly
167. RobMRobM
Kab - One minor Warbreaker note is (without any spoilers) the ending tees up a sequel, so no doubt BS will get to it at some point in the future. Not a "need a sequel or the story won't be complete" but a "this part of story is over and we know what the next adventure will be" scenario.

Roger Powell
168. forkroot
The plane I took today was just here in the 48, for my job. The plane to HI is Saturday - can't wait!

I know myself well enough not to start Mistborn before vacation starts. I would stay up way too late reading and my work here would suffer. (I hope I'm not deployed at a customer site in late October, for obvious reasons!)
mark Proctor
169. mark-p
Re Galad
I agree with Isilel that it didn't really seem right when Galad joined the White Cloaks.
I can see why RJ did made him join but i think he made a mistake some where. It would have worked better if he had developed Galads character in a way that lead to the decision or made some of the white cloaks good side (assuming they have one) more apparent. Alternatively I would have liked a point of view from Galad regretting his decision but deciding to stick with them.
Rob Munnelly
170. RobMRobM
Torie/Pablo - can someone wake Leigh up? Thanks. Rob
Rob Munnelly
171. RobMRobM
@166 - LOL. Well played.

@164 and 169, among others - Agreed. Me too. Decision to join was really dumb with channellers as his sister and mother.

150/153/165 - strongly agreed. A bit of text on training would have gone a long way.

@163 - nice analysis, Free. Query how the imminent Seanchan strike against Tar Valon in the Northeast will affect the formula.

@152 -

"Neither man ever seemed to believe that Elayne would actually be Aes Sedai. I think they imagined that she'd get a little bit of training and then be returned to Andor with a ring and a pat on the head like Morgase."

Really thoughtful point, Toryx.


ps. ***twitch, twitch, twitch***
Vincent Lane
172. Aegnor
Hey, Felicia Day tweeted about the re-read yesterday. I wonder if that will increase traffic with her 1.5 million twitter followers (or however much its up to now).

(Btw, if you don't know who Felicia Day is, check out Joss Whedon's "Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog" on Hulu, or the web series "The Guild" that Felicia writes/produces/stars in at
173. alreadymadbutnotlikeGawyn
I'd take Galad's idealistic if unpopular and calculated protest over Gawyn's erratic knee-jerk reactions. The man believed murder had been committed simply on the basis of hearsay. From someone who likely never went anywhere near the palace, and for no other reason than he doesn't know what to believe.

Does he even realize what he's doing? How much of it is love for mother and sister and how much of it is, as one post noted, jealousy over the ex-girlfriend, I wonder?
Lord Haart
174. LordHaart
"What took her a month to master for herself, they could teach in a night, in an hour. When they decided she was ready. Never until then. It galled so, when all she wanted was to learn. To learn everything. Right now."

Well chosen quote. Makes me wonder if the entire reason for Nicola as a character (thus far at least) is as a counterbalance for the "child-hero" aspects of Egwene. They are very similar personalities really, at least until KoD when Egwene actually begins to earn her title.

@#1 -> Funny you should mention it. I'm doing a pretty theoretical research project on AI right now, and need to write up a 'safety' section in the report... adding Bubbles of Evil to the equation would certainly make things more interesting.

On a more serious note, unless something in AMoL shows otherwise, I reckon Bubbles of Evil, along with Ta'veren, are the two worst plot devices in the entire WoT series, and some of the worst out of any fantasy series ever (almost as bad as not mentioning the influence of narrative at all). This might be a bit more forgivable should we learn something new in AMoL about how the DO and Pattern operate. For example, if the DO is literally trying to break the Pattern (as Ishy suggests in TGH prologue), and if the Pattern turns out to be sentiently resisting this.
175. Adam E.
Is it still cool to even comment here after everyone's reading The Gathering Storm?

Anyways, I think your commentaries are da bomb, so to say, but that aside, Nicola's prophecy caught my attention after you mentioned it here:

"The lion sword, the dedicated spear, she who sees beyond. Three on the boat, and he who is dead yet lives. The great battle done, but the world not done with battle. The land divided by the return, and the guardians balance out the servants. The future teeters on the edge of a blade."

You mention that this prophecy was a done deal...but a certain prophecy in the Gathering Storm (you know the one) makes me wonder if there's more to Nicola's prophecy than it seems. I'll go back to my cave now.
176. ScoundrelTheToy
I know this is an old post but this chapter is one the most contrived and disgusting out of any and all the WoT books. Why? The Egwene/Gawyn 'love' arc is completely illogical and makes no sense.

Let me present to you Egwene being pulled into Gawyn's dreams' and what is he dreaming of? Killing Rand, whom Egwene loves as a brother I might add, and yet this phases Egwene none, really? So we the readers are supposed to believe that if someone has murderous intentions towards someone we love (which Egwene KNOWS) it's not going to matter and indeed we're going to love them?

Any scene involving Gawyn for me are the hardest out of any to get through. The guy is the definition of tool and idiot. He's akin to a lapdog that follows you around on a leash, only he has at least 3 different leashes tugging on him.

At times I love Egwene, moreso after TGS, but others such as her thoughts concerning Rand and her plot driven contrived 'love' for Gawyn sour my stomach towards her. If there's any justice, Jordan will have Gawyn die a gruesome and revolting death right after learning how wrong he is about EVERYTHING. Alas, that doesn't seem the case as he seems to be destined to become warder and lover to one of the most influencial woman in the WoT world. I feel pity for Egwene to end up with such an idiot who will only drag her down, but she deserves it for being as much an idiot as Gawyn in this regard. He is not worthy of Egwene in no shape or form. The Dark One welcome you home Gawyn you tool.

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