Aug 21 2009 5:18pm

The Wheel of Time Re-read: Lord of Chaos, Part 7

Heigh-ho, it’s another Wheel of Time Re-read, innit? It is!

Today’s post covers Chapters 8-9 of Lord of Chaos, in which there is much stompage and schemeage, respectively. Huzzah!

Previous entries are here. This and all other posts contain spoilers for all currently published novels in the Wheel of Time series, but you knew that. Didn’t you.

The only other thing I have to say is FFRRRRIIIIIDDDDAAAAYYYYYNOM

Chapter 8: The Storm Gathers

What Happens
Nynaeve wakes up grumpy; she feels a storm coming even though the sky is cloudless and clear. She listens sourly to Elayne’s account of the previous night’s adventures, almost as annoyed that she wasn’t awake to help Heal the Aes Sedai as she is to hear that they once again had paid no attention to her warning. She asks how Elayne had ended up mired in the nightmare with the rest of them, and Elayne shrugs that part off as unimportant, hoping the Aes Sedai had learned a little humility from the experience.

[Elayne] had probably let herself be caught in the nightmare, though the girl would never admit it. Nynaeve was not sure whether Elayne thought taking credit for bravery was boasting or whether she simply did not realize how brave she was. Either way, Nynaeve was torn between admiration for the other woman’s courage and a wish that just once Elayne would acknowledge it.

She tells Elayne that she thinks she saw Rand in Tel’aran’rhiod while searching for Leane in Tar Valon, or someone who “looked a little like him”; it was only a glimpse. Elayne mutters that Rand needs her, and Nynaeve opines that what he needs is someone to “box his ears once a week on general principles”. They discuss the news gleaned from Elaida’s study briefly before Elayne has to run; she is teaching novices for the first time that day. Nynaeve goes to find Moghedien, only to discover her doing laundry (and very upset about it), apparently at Myrelle’s orders. Nynaeve stalks off, wondering if Myrelle had some kind of personal issue with her, and wanders around, looking busy so no Aes Sedai will shanghai her into some useless task. She reflects on Lan, and her desperate hope that he’s alive, and her shame that her first thought on hearing of Moiraine’s death was joy that he was free. She sees Myrelle coming toward her and hastily ducks into what she thinks is an empty building, only to find Lelaine Akashi, one of the Blue Sitters in Salidar, displaying Logain to three Altaran nobles. Logain is telling them his story about the Reds setting him up as a false Dragon; Nynaeve watches how much he seems to be enjoying it, and thinks that he really does hate Aes Sedai. The few times she had studied him, the burning contempt in his eyes had been unnerving.

Aes Sedai had shut him away from the One Power forever; Nynaeve could imagine her own feelings if anyone did that to her. He could not revenge himself on all Aes Sedai, however. What he could do was destroy the Red Ajah, and he was making a fair beginning to it.

This is a process that’s been going on for a while, in the hopes that nobles would be convinced to throw their support to the rebels, or at least not support Elaida. Nynaeve listens until Lelaine notices her, and beats a hasty retreat back onto the street, where she comes upon Siuan confronting Bryne. Bryne is growling that she is incapable of taking a compliment, while Siuan accuses him of just being smug because she has to iron his shirts; Bryne retorts that it’s not his fault she took such an oath with no expectation that she would have to keep it, and then asks what she’s heard about plans for the army to march while she’s been “groveling” for Aes Sedai. Siuan suddenly goes icy, and tells him that is not part of her oath, and he would do well to follow his oath to the Hall.

The change in Bryne was as lightning quick. “You would be an enemy worth crossing swords with,” he chuckled admiringly. “You would be a better... ” That fast the chuckle faded back into a glower. “The Hall, is it? Bah! You tell Sheriam she might as well stop avoiding me. What can be done here has been done. Tell her a wolfhound kept in a cage might as well be a pig when the wolves come. I didn’t gather these men to be sold at market.”

He strides off, and Nynaeve asks what that was all about, making Siuan jump. Siuan shuts her down coldly, but Nynaeve presses her instead on letting Nynaeve study her. Before she can make headway, though, Leane appears, and while pretending to be pissed, lets Siuan know that her attempts to get in on the meeting with the Wise Ones tonight have failed. Siuan snarls (“Fishguts!”) and storms off, and Leane takes off in the other direction. Nynaeve is irate at being ignored, but is interrupted when Lelaine joins her. Lelaine laments Siuan and Leane’s lack of decorum, and Nynaeve reluctantly helps hold up their subterfuge. Lelaine abruptly asks what Nynaeve thinks Rand al’Thor will do; Nynaeve replies that she has no idea, and hesitantly asks what the Hall plans for him. Lelaine doesn’t answer, but comments on the extraordinary number of exceptional people – like Rand and Nynaeve – all coming out of one village, and then jumps to the subject of Nynaeve’s study of Siuan and Leane, advising her to give it up and stop reminding them of what they’ve lost.

“From the way they behave, the only thing that keeps them from forgetting completely is you, and your foolish attempts to Heal what cannot be Healed. They are no longer Aes Sedai. Why hold out false hope?”

There was a hint of compassion in her voice, and a tinge of contempt too. Those not Aes Sedai were less, after all, and Siuan and Leane’s ruse had definitely painted them among the least. Plus, of course, no few here in Salidar blamed the Tower’s troubles on Siuan, on her plotting while Amyrlin. Very likely they believed she deserved everything that had happened to her and more.

Nynaeve replies carefully that Sheriam Sedai has given her permission; Lelaine notes with amusement her grip on her braid, and replies that a wise woman learns to limit how often she is a fool. She asks if Nynaeve has ever considered cutting her hair short, and leaves. Nynaeve is livid.

Months sitting here in Salidar doing nothing—for all practical purposes it seemed she was, no matter what she and Elayne managed to pull out of Moghedien—amid Aes Sedai who did nothing except talk and wait while the world went on its way to ruin without them, and Lelaine thought she should cut her hair! She had pursued the Black Ajah, been captured and escaped, captured one of the Forsaken in turn—well, none of them knew that—helped the Panarch of Tarabon regain her throne however briefly, and now all she did was sit and take credit for what she could shake loose from Moghedien. Cut her hair? She might as well shave herself bald for all the good it would do!

Nynaeve stalks on, passing a newly arrived Aes Sedai she does not recognize (and who frowns at her sharply), until she comes upon Uno. Uno gives her a grin, but she grimaces back, for seeing him has reminded her of his offer to get them out of Salidar. She walks on, musing on the notion, wishing that Thom and Juilin were not still off scouting in Amadicia, and debates where would be the best place to go if she were to leave; Elayne would certainly come if she decided to go to Rand in Caemlyn. At the thought, she comes upon Elayne’s novice class, which includes Nicola, and Nynaeve reflects that once the age bar had been lifted Salidar had acquired more novices than the White Tower had had for years. Theodrin joins her abruptly, making her jump again, and asks if she would like to be teaching novices. Nynaeve pooh-poohs the notion, but Theodrin smiles and merely comments that once Nynaeve’s block is broken Theodrin has no doubt she’ll be raised soon after, with all the amazing things she’s discovering. Theodrin then mentions that Nynaeve never told her what her “trick” was.

“People got well when they shouldn’t. I would get so mad that somebody was going to die, that everything I knew about herbs wasn’t enough...” she shrugged. “And they got well.”

Theodrin thinks that’s much better than her trick, which was she could make boys want to kiss her, or not. Her block was men; she couldn’t channel unless there was a man who she strongly liked or disliked in the vicinity. She tells Nynaeve how they broke her block, by having a handsome young man she really liked be in the room while she had lessons, and then unbeknownst to her switched him out with his twin sister.

“When she took off her coat and shirt one day in the middle of my lesson, I was so shocked I fainted. But after that, I could channel whenever I wanted.”

Nynaeve and Theodrin both laugh, and Theodrin swiftly takes the opportunity to press Nynaeve to stop avoiding her and learn how to break her block. Nynaeve resists, but Theodrin is adamant, for Myrelle has asked her to make “special efforts”. She walks away, and an astounded Nynaeve is then promptly knocked down by Dagdara Finchey (Yellow), who’s running through the streets for some reason. Nynaeve stomps back to her room, only for Moghedien to storm in moments later to rant about her “ruined” hands and being made to labor like a commoner, until Nynaeve shuts her up with an imaginary switching, and settles down to try and learn the latest thing, a weave which Moghedien claims will let a woman detect a man’s channeling, but is so complicated that so far it’s only given her and Elayne blinding headaches. She works on it until Elayne barges in, scaring Moghedien half to death, to tell Nynaeve the news: an emissary has arrived from the Tower, a Red named Tarna Feir, and the whole town is in a taking. Nynaeve observes sourly that she and Elayne had told them Elaida knew where they were, but Elayne points out that it’s one thing to be told and another to know for sure. Nynaeve kicks Moghedien out and asks Elayne what message Tarna brought, but Elayne doesn’t know. She worries that the Hall might actually seriously consider an offer to return; Nynaeve is incredulous at the notion, but Elayne replies that Nynaeve does not know Aes Sedai the way she does, and she thinks any of them would give almost anything to have the Tower whole again.

Nynaeve rubbed her arms irritably. She had no answers, only hopes, and her weather sense told her that that hailstorm that was not there was beating the roofs of Salidar like drums. The feeling went on for days.

Interesting chapter title, all things considered...

Poor Nynaeve. The world just rains crap on her head, doesn’t it? It’s very funny to me how I can be in almost total sympathy with her virtually constant state of high dudgeon, and at the same time find it hilarious. Basically this entire chapter is Nynaeve stomping around being irate at everything, and it is amusing as hell.

Not that she doesn’t have plenty to be legitimately irate about, of course. I do kind of wish she’d been nice to Uno, though. For some reason her treatment of Uno is one of the few things that irritates rather than amuses me about her. I have no idea why I have such a soft spot for the guy, but there it is. Be nice to Uno, dammit!

Completely random sighting of Slayer: Seemingly unrelated to anything in particular, unless you buy the theory that Slayer planted the Trolloc nightmare that trapped Sheriam et al, which personally I don’t. Maybe it’s just Jordan reminding us that he exists. Wild-eyed conspiracy theorists are invited to have at.

Logain: This whole thing with the Red Ajah and all that made me nervous from the start. I was convinced it was going to blow up in the Rebels’ faces from Day One, probably because of the lying and the karma and all.

Of course, then it just kind of... didn’t have any effect at all, that I can recall, so okay then. Bullet: dodged!

Bryne: Siuan would be a better what? Wife? Sparring opponent? Small green fuzzy creature from Alpha Centauri? Tell me! Grr.

Lelaine: Her introduction is so innocuous, and yet she is going to become such a giant pain in our asses, it’s amazing. Also, her commentary on the unlikelihood of so many “extraordinary” people coming from one village is about as close as Jordan ever comes to lampshade hanging.

Thom and Juilin: Well, at least we finally found out what the heck happened to them. For a while there I thought they’d fallen down a plothole. *rimshot*

Theodrin: I love her story about how she broke her block, and I love that she seems like such a normal person, which makes her a downright anomaly in Salidar. I do hope she does not turn out to be a Darkfriend, as a friend of mine stoutly avers she must be, because (he says) otherwise she is way too “nice”. B-but, why can’t we have nice things?? I cry.

Moghedien: Heh. Poor widdle Forsaken has to do laundry, oh woe!

And also, perhaps it is screamingly obvious and I shouldn’t be proud of this, but I instantly called bullshit on this “detecting a man channeling” weave the first time through, and was very annoyed (perhaps unfairly) at Nynaeve and Elayne for not catching it themselves. Go me!

(Give me a break, I hardly ever guess plot twists ahead of time.)

Speaking of Elayne, I love that she is this proper and elegantly brought-up princess, and yet is continually described as slamming doors open and barging into rooms and scaring the crap out of everyone. Probably because people getting fake scares like that is just generally funny. As long as it’s not happening to you, naturally.

Last but not least, how long can it possibly take for Nynaeve to catch on that her “storm sense” is working just fine, as long as you go meta? Ain’t you never heard o’ them there cymbalical thingys, girl? (Smash!)

(No, I do not know what is wrong with me. Move along, please.)

Chapter 9: Plans

What Happens
In his office, Niall dresses down his spymaster Abdel Omerna for letting Illuminators past the quarantined border of Tarabon. Omerna argues stubbornly (and stupidly) for allowing their admittance until Niall finally shuts him down and asks for his report. Omerna goes on at great length and very little accuracy, claiming (among other things) that Mattin Stepaneos is ready and eager to ally with the Children, with Alliandre of Ghealdan, Tylin of Altara, and Roedran of Murandy close behind, the Borderlands are in rebellion, and the Prophet’s army is sure to break any day now against Ailron’s forces.

Niall listened just enough to know where to nod. Omerna had been an adequate commander in the field, so long as someone told him what to do, but in his present position, his credulous stupidity was trying. [...] The simple form of it was this: where a spymaster should doubt his own face in the mirror, Omerna believed anything.

Niall thanks Omerna and sends him out, and as an afterthought Omerna gives him a message come by pigeon for him. After Omerna leaves, Niall doesn’t open the message, but instead contemplates the drawing of Rand al’Thor fighting in the sky at Falme. He wonders if he waited too long, and thinks that if so, the “knife in the dark” may be the only solution left. His secretary, Balwer, enters; Niall asks him if he thinks Stepaneos will really join him, and Balwer replies perhaps, but he’s just learned that Stepaneos has also agreed to an unknown proposal from the Tower.

The truth was that Omerna was a decoy, a fool who did not know himself that he was only a mask hiding the true master of spies in the Fortress of the Light, Sebban Balwer, Niall’s prim dried-up little secretary with his disapproving mouth. A man no one would ever suspect, or credit if he was named to them.

Where Omerna believed everything, Balwer believed nothing, perhaps not even in Darkfriends, or the Dark One. If Balwer did believe in anything, it was looking over men’s shoulders, listening to their whispers, rooting out their secrets. Of course, he would have served any master as well as he did Niall, but that was all to the good. What Balwer learned was never tainted by what he knew had to be true, or wanted to be true. Disbelieving everything, he always managed to root out truth.

Balwer gives Niall the real report, including the news that Davram Bashere is in Caemlyn, and the fighting in the Borderlands (over whether al’Thor is a false Dragon or not) is dying down. Niall thinks it’s no wonder Tenobia is avoiding his envoy, then, and reflects sourly that so far everything seems to be going al’Thor’s way. He is horrified by the sheer size of the army al’Thor’s building in Tear, and Ailron’s retreat from the Prophet’s forces has only stopped because the Prophet has stopped advancing. Niall reminds himself, though, that all is not lost yet; Carridin is doing well in Altara and Murandy, and Niall maintains confidence that the fence-sitting nations can be convinced to come down on his side – even Saldaea. Additionally, Eamon Valda will soon be back from Tar Valon, and while Niall has little love for Valda, it means that the Children will be at full strength again. He abruptly remembers the message, and breaks the seal while Balwer looks primly displeased at this evidence of sources that don’t go through him first. The ciphered message is from a rug seller named Varadin, whom Niall had thought dead and now concludes has gone mad.

In the jerky hand of a man on the brink of madness, it was a wild disjointed ramble about men riding strange beasts and flying creatures, Aes Sedai on leashes and the Hailene. That meant Forerunners in the Old Tongue, but there was not even an attempt to explain why Varadin was terrified of them or who they were supposed to be. Plainly the man had taken a brain fever from watching his country disintegrate around him.

Niall tosses the message aside and tells Balwer to continue. Balwer tells him that the rumors about the Ogier holding meetings are true, though there is no way to tell what those meetings are about; Balwer comments they are showing “unusual haste” for Ogier. There is also an unusually large number of Sea Folk ships in the southern ports, not doing any trading or sailing.

“The news of middling interest is... peculiar, my Lord. Al’Thor has reliably been reported in Caemlyn, in Tear and in Cairhien, sometimes on the same day.”

“Reliably? Reliable madness. The witches probably have two or three men who look like al’Thor, enough to fool anyone who doesn’t know him. That would explain a good deal.”

The last and most interesting item in Balwer’s report is the news that the witches in Salidar are claiming that the Red Ajah had set up Logain Ablar to be a false Dragon, and are telling this story to anyone who will listen. Niall frowns, and wonders if perhaps he might have been wrong, and the Tower really was split. He thinks the information very dangerous, as many of the Children would see this as a prime opportunity to attack the witches in Salidar, and Niall is determined that this will not devolve into a Children vs. the Tower scenario. Niall and Balwer discuss how to turn this to their advantage, and eventually come up with a plan to spread four rumors:

“The first, that the division in the Tower was caused by a Black Ajah uprising. The second, that the Black Ajah won, and control the Tower. Third, the Aes Sedai in Salidar, repelled and horrified, are renouncing being Aes Sedai. And fourth, they have approached you, seeking mercy and protection. For most people, each will be a confirmation of the others.”

Niall approves, and moving on, tells Balwer that he wants Elayne and Gawyn Trakand found and brought to Amador. Balwer diffidently suggests that he press Morgase, as she has been in the Fortress for over a month, but Niall replies that Morgase is too “rugged” an opponent to press too hard; if cornered, she will fight, but every day that she is here ties her to Niall more closely.

“It is always harder to abandon an alliance the world thinks you entered freely than one you can prove you were forced into. Reckless haste leads to ruin, Balwer.”

Morgase is out hawking with Basel Gill, Paitr Conel, some loaned ladies-in-waiting, and a large escort of armed men, supposedly to protect her from roving Dragonsworn, even though the nearest were some two hundred miles away. Two of the ladies compliment her on her son Galad’s quick attainment of rank in the Children, and Morgase thinks of how Niall had dropped that bomb on her the night before, and knows it to be yet another knife to her throat. The only protection she can give him is to pretend she doesn’t care about him, and so replies indifferently to the ladies. Another more powerful noble, Marande, cuts in spitefully, saying she hears Rand al’Thor displays the Lion Throne “like a trophy from the hunt”.

“I have heard as much,” Morgase replied blithely. “The lion is a dangerous animal to hunt, and the Lion Throne more so. Especially for a man. It always kills men who seek it.”

Marande smiled. “I also hear he gives high places to men who can channel.”

This is not as easy for Morgase to laugh off, and Marande presses her advantage, telling her that al’Thor consorts daily with Andoran nobility: Arymilla, Naean, Jarin, Lir. Morgase abruptly ends the hawking party and heads back to the Fortress. Marande smiles in triumph; Morgase is careful not to reveal her own smile as she thinks Marande is poison, but her need to hurt Morgase makes her reveal far more information than she should. And the names she gave Morgase were very comforting, for they had all been Gaebril toadies, and the news gives Morgase hope that her old allies – Pelivar, Abelle, Luan, Ellorien, etc. – have not yet knelt to al’Thor and might even return their support to her. They pass crowds of dirty, hopeless-looking travelers on the road, and Morgase asks the leader of the “armsmen” (really, Whitecloaks), Norowhin, if they are refugees from the Prophet. Norowhin doesn’t want to talk to her, but finally answers no, they are refugees from the false Dragon. Morgase doesn’t understand this, as al’Thor is hundreds of leagues from here.

“They believe he is the true Dragon Reborn,” he said at last, sounding disgusted. “They say he has broken all bonds, according to the Prophecies. Men forsake their lords, apprentices desert their masters. Husbands abandon their families, and wives their husbands. It is a plague carried on the wind, a wind that blows from the false Dragon.”

Morgase watches them, and vows that if al’Thor has done the same in Andor as here, she will make him pay.

Whitecloaks, bah. Morgase, agh. Infodumps, grar. Me no like mean chapter.

Though Balwer, I admit, is cool. Especially knowing where he will end up, but even without that, he’s an interesting character, made more so by his contrast with a pompous ass like Omerna.

Niall is a bizarre mix as a character; on some levels he is extremely insightful, as when he notes what makes Omerna a rotten spymaster and what makes Balwer a great one, but in the next breath he himself fails to live up to Balwer’s recipe for success. Niall terms Balwer’s secret as “believe nothing”, but a more accurate way to put it is “color nothing”. By which I mean, Balwer is great at ferreting out truth because he takes things as they are, and does not let his own personal prejudices and preconceptions alter how he interprets them. This is harder than it sounds.

I think Niall believes he does this as well, but he really doesn’t. He’s not as bad as your average fanatic Whitecloak, but he has several very large blind spots that he’s not even aware of.

Of course, so do we all, right? But I think the difference is there are certain kinds of personalities that are self-aware enough to at least recognize they have biases, and can therefore work to counteract them. The problem is, you rarely come across that kind of personality in an organization like the Whitecloaks. Niall comes close, but close, as they say, only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades. And Aludra hasn’t gotten around to inventing the latter yet. Ba dum dum.

Infodump: Blah blah. Balwer’s information does clear up what the fighting in the Borderlands was about, if not exactly how it was resolved, and presumably this is what will lead to the BoTO (Borderland Treaty Organization, as it was dubbed on Usenet back in the day), which is the big ass Borderlander army that tromps all over looking for Rand for like a hundred years, and as of KOD is still playing decoy for Elayne in Andor, if I recall correctly, which I may not. In any case, they still haven’t found Rand, and therefore this is one more thread that has managed to hang fire for six books – more, actually, since the first rumors about the Borderland fighting showed up earlier, in TFOH or even TSR. So, yeah.

The rug merchant’s message: the Seanchan are already back in Tanchico? Eh? I thought they didn’t show up until ACOS, in Ebou Dar. Well, whatever.

Morgase: As usual, she manages to say at least one thing that completely pisses me off. Seriously, woman, how is it Rand’s fault that people he’s never been anywhere near decided completely independently to go haring off into the wild blue yonder because of him? Of course, he’s going to feel guilty about them himself, but he would.

And is it just me, or is that the most loonball thing to do ever? The world is on the edge of famine and drought, there’s war busting out all over, and the End, quite literally, is Nigh, like for reals, you guys – so, obviously, this is an absolutely PERFECT time to abandon your family and friends and livelihoods and go on a road trip with no money and no food and no protection! That makes so much sense! Except for how it’s retarded, of course. Sheesh.

“Fallout shelter”, guys. Look it up. Hatches, battening down the. Seriously.

Aaaand that concludes this week’s installment of me trying to talk sense into people who don’t actually exist. It’s a tough disorder but somebody’s got to freak people out with it! See what I sacrifice for you? Yeah, you be real grateful, and I might even come back on Monday. MAYBE. Ciao!

Jason Lyman
1. jlyman
WOW!!! First comment! Now I guess I better go read the recap...
2. kutulu
Dear Leigh:

Please to be stopping with the linking to the tvtropes when I still am having the working to be done (!).


Christopher Sandoval
3. crsandoval
Thanks Leigh now i dont have to work for the rest of Friday. YEA
Marcus W
4. toryx
Both of these chapters kind of irritated me. I was irritated with Nyneave and Elayne for not figuring out that Moghedian was messing with their brains (rather literally) with the whole detecting a man channeling. I'm sure that I'm not being fair to them but still. Irritating! I'm also irritated that when there are so many things they have to work out and learn, they spend so much time working on that.

Of course, if it had worked, it'd have saved Egwene all kinds of headaches later.

Niall irritated me a lot because of much the same reasons Leigh gave. He's so smart and capable and yet so blind to what he doesn't want to see. Actually, I think he's the male version of Elaida. The two of them should have gotten married and had babies together, they're so alike.

And disgust with her continues apace. But that's just par for the course with her.
Andrew Lovsness
5. drewlovs
This is the area of the story where I started really, really liking Siuan. While dealing with a life-change that usually kills the person, she instead becomes the ultimate manipualator of a group of women who are used to manipulating the world. No small feat there.

Also, he relationship with Bryne is some of the best comic relief Jordan has ever written.

Anyway, Siuan is the one bright light when dealing the the drudgery of the rebel Aei Sedai and their "do nothings."
Richard Boye
6. sarcastro
I do hope she does not turn out to be a Darkfriend, as a friend of mine stoutly avers she must be, because (he says) otherwise she is way too “nice”. B-but, why can’t we have nice things?? I cry.

I presume you refer to me, Leigh.

It's true. Theodrin is so goody-goody she must be Pure Evil(tm).

More later....
7. taraboner
I always assumed that nynaeve "storm sense" was her felling that there supposed to be a storm but because the dark one screwed up the weather there isn’t any storm . I never even thought about the possibility that its symbolic
Jane Smyth
8. Kaboom
Pedron Niall, probably one the bad guys I liked the most. I couldn't help but feel bad for him when he was killed. I was also very happy when Balwer started to help Perrin. I hope I won't be disappointed because I expect a lot from this... do you call this a relation or a relationship?
Pete Pratt
9. PeteP
Funny how Niall's rumors strike so close to the truth with the Tower split.

You are right, Niall is the male version of Elaida.

Balwer is great --- and the highlight of the Perrin parts to come in future books.
John Shaw
10. Kinsbane
Thanks again for the re-read, Leigh.

At the first time reading the chapter with the detect a man channeling weave, I instantly knew it was BS. I haven't heard RJ quote on it, or it mentioned anywhere, but I remember when Rand first learned to detect a woman channeling; he felt a tingle. So, we have "cold" or "chill". Also, Mat's medallion gets pretty cold when a woman channels a weave at him. This, in combination of RJ's continued description of saidar as being sweet, makes me always think of a cold glass of drink, or ice cream, something similar. Things that are or have a cold or chill sensation.

Now, when I think about how RJ describes saidin, it's always related to something hot, or fire, or something similar. I think Rand was able to learn about a woman channeling in TSR because of his ta'veren luck. I think a woman can, in fact, detect a man channeling, but instead of being a chill and getting goosebumps, I imagine the woman would feel like her skin was getting lightly pricked by needled (or nettles), or something along the lines of a normal sunburn (not the coloration of the skin, but the feeling).
11. SNuBoi
I have always thought RJ wrote the return of the Seanchen really well. In ACOS when they showed up out of nowhere in Amador I was like WTF. I had missed all the clues that had been building up since TFOH and some of them were not especially subtle. Of course I was only 16 then and not the most astute reader. In the end I thougth it was some really good forshadowing and the fact that so many characters here rumors about Tarabon and just dismiss them.
John Shaw
12. Kinsbane
@ 8 Kaboom:

Possibility her "storm sense" is similar to the dice tumbling in Mat's head? A sense of something very, very important coming? I could never decide on which I wanted - a real "storm", or a shitstorm.
Alice Arneson
13. Wetlandernw
Nynaeve: Not sure what it is about sympathizing and finding it funny at the same time, but I'm totally with you on it. Maybe you have to sympathize in order to enjoy the humor in it? A lot of people just seem to find it irritating, unless they get a jolly out of seeing her frustrated because they dislike her.

Omerna. Oy. Unbelievably stupid... Wonder if RJ knew some "intelligence" folks like this IRL... I don't think I'd ever really stopped and thought about Niall's nearly equal stupidity here. (I have to say, I noticed it on the summary and wrote this big thing about it, and then read the commentary and realized the Leigh wrote basically the same thing. *sigh*) Three times in this one conversation, he completely dismisses information coming from what even he considers reliable sources. I remember the first time through, I kept bouncing back and forth between Niall being a good guy or a bad guy. All through this section, he does a lot of "good guy" things, even though a lot of them are being done with "unintentional bad guy" reasons. Yeah, he's kinda like Elaida, though generally a little smarter, or at least more patient and subtle. And not quite so self-centered, if not exactly selfless in his motivations. At least he generally intends to serve the greater good. Funny how he can be more-or-less-good-guy motivated, and individual behaviors can be more-or-less-good-guy in themselves, but the end result is self-deceived-mostly-bad-guy.
14. LaraBeaton
I thought it was pretty obvious that Bryne was thinking that Suian would great in the sack. He was admiring her fire and passion, and thinking of what other situations that might apply to.

Ob course, it may just be that I have a filthy mind.
15. Freelancer
Nynaeve - Hates that she couldn't help more after the nightmare scene. Hates that Elayne doesn't realize her own courage (while busily not recognizing her own at the same time). Just hunting for reasons to be upset with people, whether for honorable or hypocritical reasons, she just needs to be unhappy. She deserves Lan and his "widow's weeds".

Balwer - Second sneakiest character in Randland, behind everyone's favorite Brown.

Morgase - Blaming Rand = Goofy. Pleased that she is getting information via insults and taunts = Fairly awesome, given her circumstances. Determined to work the situation she has no matter what = No surprise, she's a Queen of Andor.

Pedron Naill - Funny stuff. Four rumors, "obviously false", but together they hang on each other. And yet, the first two are remarkably close to reality, and the third has more pseudo-truth in it than the SAS would want aired.
16. ephemeral-girl
Ick. Pedron Niall. Can anyone tell me what Leigh is saying about Nynaeve's weather sense? Is she saying she has to focus on the 'big picture'? Bizarre rhetoric confuzzles me...
Morgase is not one of my favorite characters to read, but I have to cut her a break or seven because she has been through more shit than any other character in the series, except possibly Rand.
17. LaraBeaton
As for this part:

And is it just me, or is that the most loonball thing to do ever? The world is on the edge of famine and drought, there’s war busting out all over, and the End, quite literally, is Nigh, like for reals, you guys – so, obviously, this is an absolutely PERFECT time to abandon your family and friends and livelihoods and go on a road trip with no money and no food and no protection! That makes so much sense! Except for how it’s retarded, of course. Sheesh.

Why not? If the world is ending, and there's nothing that you can really do about it, then why the hell not go ditch your loveless marriage, run off and spend every dime in your possession? Can you think of a better time to do that?

In your typical end of the world scenario, you can do one of three things:

1. fight to stop the end of the world
2. carry on as if everything was normal
3. party like it's 1999
Roger Powell
18. forkroot
Not to be overlooked in these chapters: Hello Tarna Feir (or at least "hello again" since New Spring). For the first time we get glimpses of a "reasonable Red", and we'll be seeing more once we meet Pevara.

IMO this is great for the series ... it gets us off the simplistic "blue ajah = good gals, red ajah = bad gals". We also get glimpses of what a PITA Lelaine is, confirming my point.
Jason Lyman
19. jlyman
@10. Kinsbane

I imagine the woman would feel like her skin was getting lightly pricked by needled (or nettles), or something along the lines of a normal sunburn (not the coloration of the skin, but the feeling).

Hot flashes? I think they would think that was something else.

RE: Balwer
I always liked him too. Especially once he started helping out Perrin. Although on my first read it took me a while to realize that it was the same person.

RE: Niall
I think he came across to me as a grandfather figure. One almost too tired to deal with all the familiar rigors of real life. Maybe becoming a little senile or something. At least in this chapter he seems to not put forth a whole-hearted effort. I dunno.
mark Proctor
20. mark-p
I was about to give up on the reread but finally 2 chapters that I enjoyed.
Grumpy Nynaeve is allways fun to read (not sure I thought that initially) and this must be one of her worst days (and we have all had days like that). It worked much better than the earlier chapters at covering all the plot threads in Salidar.
And the White Cloak chapter was actually quite interesting. I don't find them quite as irritating when they are plotting as when they are trying to do something.

Dose Moghedien's weave actually do anything (obviously not what she says it dose) or dose it just make them concentrate until they get tired?
What slightly puzzled me about Elayne/Nynaeve is why RJ decided to make Elayne the one who is most interested in the weather and uses the Bowl of winds but Nyneave has always had the weather sense but doesn't develop it. Maybe he though if Nyn did everything it would be a bit unbalanced.
Maiane Bakroeva
21. Isilel
I remember thinking that it was yet another ad hoc Talent making an appearance, but during this re-read I noticed that Nynaeve could feel symbolic storms and messed up weather since her introduction in TEoTW and had an occasional premonition, too. Funny, since it is Elayne who has weather-manipulating abilities.

And yes, Nyn is hilarious as always, but... her situation is completely unbelievable. Why aren't any AS working to break down her block? I mean, from what we have heard usually blocks merit AS attention (Theodrin, Tarna, etc.). And why wasn't she made to learn the Old Tongue, history, geography, law - a myriad of subjects that constitute normal Tower eductaion, but of which due to her special circumstances she is completely ignorant? Realistically, Nyn should have been made to study from from dawn till dusk.

I mean, RJ really wanted to bring AS down low, but this is just completely OOC.

Speaking of Siuan, she continues to be awesome and she and Leane are very lucky that Slayer didn't kill them during their TV forays. In fact, I am kind of afraid for captive Leane after KoD from his quarter.

Logain and the Reds - well, it will blow up once the Tower re-unites or somebody realizes that Leane can lie. I hope that the DA hunters decide to co-opt her before Elaida takes her head or BA/Slayer snuff her.
BTW - isn't it strange that after months of fantasizing about bleeding Siuan and Leane dry of all information they possess, Elaida completely ignores captive Leane? Or did nobody tell her the prisoner's identity? That would be very funny indeed.

I have no sympathy for Logain unless he had good reasons to believe he could be a DR. Otherwise, he is just a criminal with blood of thousands on his hands. Though he behaved relatively decently once he joined the BT - genuine repentance? Or is he trying to be worthy of his foretold glory?

Morgase... sigh. I really liked her and hoped that she was intended to be an character who could take command clad in sackcloth. I mean, we heard so much about her abilities and she had a strong enough will to throw off a truly expert Compulsion. And then this...

Niall - I maintain that he is worse than Elaida, because he is more intelligent and more bloodthirsty. Also, he did hear from Toman Head, right? About Seanchan?

Yep, Suroth and Co are back yet again... Amathera is already learning the Poses of the the Swan, no doubt...
John Shaw
22. Kinsbane
@19. jlyman
I don't know what hot flashes feel like. I know what a mild sunburn feels like. I suspect feeling a man channeling could also feel like heartburn. Or if you eat a red pepper and need tons of water + bread.
Evan Langlinais
23. Skwid
So...should that first word of this update be read "Hee-ho?"

Because I really can't read it otherwise.

Damn you, Butler!
Sean Jones
24. PersonOfTheDragons
@ 14. LaraBeaton

It's not just you there, I totally thought Bryne was talking about how she'd be great in the sack.

Or maybe I just have a dirty mind too...
Jason Lyman
25. jlyman
@22. Kinsbane

I don't know what they feel like either. I guess it was a lame duck joke attempt :(
Rob Munnelly
26. RobMRobM
Couple of quick things:

@4 and others (including Leigh) - re the weave to detect saidin, keep in mind that one of the rebel AS discovered it in KoD. So not so far fetched. Was Moggy really messing with their heads or actually trying to teach the real thing.

@6 - you mean "Pure Ebil" (TM)

@7 Yes, Nyneave "storm sense" occurs through the series when something big is about to happen, not tied to weather. Really interesting analogue made @12 to Mat's dice - they are similar and never thought of that before. Well done.

@9 Niall = the male version of Elaida - I like it. Both are smart as whips (Elaida is not dumb - she flew through tower training in close to record time) and both can convince people to follow their leads but the leads are so, so wrong....

@14 - yep, dirty mind (nods head sagely)

@15 "Second sneakiest character in Randland, behind everyone's favorite Brown..." You mean Danelle??? LOL

@17 and Leigh's comment that it is based on - keep in mind that the same thing happens in the prologue to TGS, per the item read during JordanCon. So not too silly in Randland.

I agree with several commenters that the Logain Red-bashing discussion juxtaposed with the Tarna Feir appearance (dun dun dun) is nicely played by RJ.

Glad we got a post. Thanks Leigh (and Pablo/Torie).


john mullen
27. johntheirishmongol
For those of you that missed it: Per discussion last chapter, list 3 good guys who are most likely to die in the last 3 books. You can list 3 names or add commentary. I will close poll on Monday when the new chapter arrives and post final results then.

As for these chapters, Ny just walks around angry all the time and I just dont like people like that. So she annoys me almost every time I read about her. Because she is important, you can't avoid her but I want to get her on some good medication.

As for Naill, he has interesting POV but he is all about the ends justifying the means. He doesn't consider any human cost with all the assasinations, plots, and wars. He doesn't even believe in what he is fighting for. In contrast, Rand does a lot of stuff that causes deaths but he at least agonizes over those issues and does it from a sense of duty and belief.
Leigh Butler
28. leighdb
sarcastro @ 6:

You presume correctly. And I still don't buy it, So There.

LaraBeaton @ 14:

Ob course, it may just be that I have a filthy mind.

You? That would be Inconceivable!

Skwid @ 23:

Don't make me smack you, Texas.

(Apparently, this is "dredge up old in-jokes" day...)
29. litg

Yeah, the Seanchan start at Tanchico, then progress along the coast, gobbling up Amador (in Crown of Swords) before finally arriving at Ebou Dar and Altara.
Francesco Paonessa
30. ErrantKnave
You know, for all that a block against channeling is pretty bad, Nynaeve is the one person whose block does not seem like a handicap. "Must be angry to channel? NO PROBLEM!" (Insert braid-tug anywhere.)
Roger Powell
31. forkroot
As for these chapters, Ny just walks around angry all the time and I just dont like people like that.
Well given her block, it's probably a good thing that she's got a nice base of anger that she can bring to a boil in a hurry. Quite possibly an adaptive measure. {Looks like ErrantKnave beat me to much the same point.}

Once she breaks her block, she doesn't seem quite so angry anymore ... but, um, then again, that's also when she starts "getting some" (wink, wink)
Roger Powell
32. forkroot
BTW - Who is that who is kneeling to Rand on the cover? Is this supposed to be the kneeling scene at the end of Dumai's Wells? If so, I'm curious as to the woman's identity.

33. Lynnia
RobMRobM @26: After Moggy escapes from Salidar and is pleading with (Shaidar Haran? Moridin? Random Evil Minion?) that she's not actually a traitor to the Dark Side, one of her examples is having taught the girls a weave "to detect saidin" that will instead always give you a headache. I think it's safe to assume that's correct.
34. JohnDoe
Well, I rather liked Pedron Niall. It was kinda refreshing to see a bad guy who was really good. He followed the Light yet he wasn't willing to follow Rand. I'd shy away from comparing him to Elaida but the similarities are there.

It also kinda speaks to the theology of Randland. I guess there are those who believe the Creator is active (like Logain) and there are those who believe He left everyone to their devices (like Niall). I guess the latter is reminiscent of Deism.

The woman on the cover is one of the Aes Sedai that swear fealty to Rand but there was no mention of a Draghkar...Maybe he was secretly spying for the Great Lord but that sounds unlikely. It's true. The covers do kinda suck but have you seen the cover for the UK version of TGS? So amazing.
35. JohnDoe
Well, I rather liked Pedron Niall. It was kinda refreshing to see a bad guy who was really good. He followed the Light yet he wasn't willing to follow Rand. I'd shy away from comparing him to Elaida but the similarities are there.

It also kinda speaks to the theology of Randland. I guess there are those who believe the Creator is active (like Logain) and there are those who believe He left everyone to their devices (like Niall). I guess the latter is reminiscent of Deism.

The woman on the cover is one of the Aes Sedai that swear fealty to Rand but there was no mention of a Draghkar...Maybe he was secretly spying for the Great Lord but that sounds unlikely. It's true. The covers do kinda suck but have you seen the cover for the UK version of TGS? So amazing.
craig thrift
36. gagecreedlives
Lelaine does become a pain in the ass later but her introduction with asking a clearly agitated Nynaeve if she has ever thought about cutting her hair is a crack up.

Logain while he is lying here I still think in a karma sense it balances out. Im still sticking with my loony theory that the Red led by Galina and probably with Elaida’s knowledge have set up false dragons. I wouldn’t be surprised if its all linked up with the illegal gentling of men and Cadsuane’s vileness.

Niall and Elaida are similar. And whats the one thing they have in common. Direct association with Fain. Me thinks he might of enhanced their blind spots to a degree.

Theodrin not dark friend. Very likely cannon fodder though

Im gonna go with “you would be a better wife than body servant.” Then again there mightn’t be much difference (runs into bunker ducking and weaving).


When Moggy gets “rescued” later she claims it was all crap. Its just a distraction so she doesn’t have to teach them anything proper.

And Leigh just out of curiosity what would be your opinion on the current poll?
37. Freelancer
Nynaeve's weather sense is a completely different Talent than ability to manipulate weather via channeling. It's more like Foretelling, or seeing ta'varen, or Min's viewing. So there's no inconsistency to that Talent being Nynaeve's while Elayne is more adept at weather channeling. Besides, as we can clearly see here, and has been true for some time (coincident with the first weakening of the seals, I imagine), Nynaeve isn't sensing the weather anymore. She is sensing chaos, or conflict, or strength of the shadow in her proximity. Not certain which, or any of those, but it's NOT the weather. That's why she's so frustrated about it.

RE: Broken ties and drifting lives

I would agree with LaraBeaton@17, except that this isn't quite what we see. In TEotW, we see masses of folks starting to drift to Caemlyn, partly due to the unending winter weather, but partly for no apparent reason. And Rand hasn't done anything yet. After Falme, there are the dragonsworn, but they aren't mostly drifting, they are coalescing into bands. Also, there are multiplied numbers of people just up and leaving home, but with no apparent goal. Then there are those who are displaced by riots, wars, famines, all your usual pre-apocalyptical events. Look at Almoth Plain, Cairhien, Illian, etc. In any case, there's no examples given of people "partying like it's 1999".

RE: Bryne's uncompleted compliment about Siuan.

I inserted two different possibilities for this:
1) Ally. He said she'd be a formidable foe, logically he'd think she'd be a better ally.
2) Wife. How long ago did he begin berating himself for getting in this mess just because he chased a pair of blue eyes? In a way, option 2 is the same as option 1. Seriously, why must everything possible be assigned to lust, when there's no reasonable evidence that such is the case? It would be out of character for Bryne, out of character to the story as a whole.

More importantly about Bryne's words here is that he isn't misled about where the real power is in Salidar. Siuan says "the Hall", and Bryne counters "Sheriam". She isn't the Keeper yet, so he knows all about the "guiding six", and isn't fooled.


When did a sister figure out how to sense a man channeling? And by the way, men don't have to channel to detect saidar, it's innate. The only women who know when a man channels are using ter'angreal, to my knowledge. Cadsuane and Nynaeve have them (and the Guardian in Totally Maddening)
craig thrift
38. gagecreedlives

"When did a sister figure out how to sense a man channeling?"

Its in KoD. One of the warder Asha'man makes a report to the rebels and they try out the new weave and it works. IIRC its the same time they cotton on to Halima.


The asha'man is Jahar Narishma and the aes sedai with the fancy new weave is Nacelle of the green ajah. Thank you encylopaedia WoT.

I dont know if RJ did this on purpose but we have Nynaeve being able since EotW to sense the weather. In the same book Elayne is introduced carrying a medikit and is interested in healing. Now one is terrible with weather weaves and the other is terrible at healing.
39. douglasm
In Knife of Dreams, when the Asha'man show up at the rebel camp to offer some of their number as warders, one of the Sitters brings in an Aes Sedai who wants to test a weave she developed. It's not clear how this weave works or what its limits are, but it correctly identifies a test effort by an Asha'man as using Spirit only and correctly identifies who the flow was directed at.
Vincent Lane
40. Aegnor
Anyone else have fantasies of showing up in the story at points like this and saying "No, no, no... you have it all wrong. This is how it really is and what is really going on."?
41. Freelancer
Ah yes, quite so. I remember thinking it still unequal to men's ability to sense saidar being used, since the female channeler needed to target the man with her weave to sense what is happening. But, it was real, I had forgotten.
Rob Munnelly
42. RobMRobM
Thanks, all, for the answer to the Moggy question. It is one of RJ's ironies that these lesser modern day AS figured it out when the oldtimers couldn't.

Rob Munnelly
43. RobMRobM
By the way - an update on my effort to read some of the fantasy and sci-fi classics of the last 20 years, based on my survey of the group while Leigh was on vacation.

1. I have now finished Feist's Riftwar series (the two Magician books, Silverthorn and Darkness at Sethanon). I thought it was quite good but not great. I liked a bunch of the characters (especially Pug, Arutha, Martin, Amos, Caraline and Jimmy) but
- the magic was too much of a black box - undefined powers that were in-born and then developed offscreen (both for Pug and Tomas). This was especially problematical for me in the final book.
- I had to suspend more disbelief than I like in terms of main characters escaping impossible situations without getting killed.
- It seemed choppy and didn't flow as well as I see in my favorite works.
- Finally, it didn't grab me emotionally as much as my favorites (Dune, WoT, GRRM, Amber, LoR).

The series was certainly worth reading and I can see why so many recommended it. Thanks.

2. While not on my top six list, I'm in the middle of the second book in Donaldson's Gap series of sci fi novels. It was a highly rated series of books by your recommendations and I originally was not going to read them because I had already read the Thomas Covenant books by the same author but...the books were in my library and others on the list weren't so I'm jumping in with both feet. I liked (but didn't love) the first one (The Real Story) but found it to be shockingly violent. I'm enjoying the second one more, even though it's still violent, because it is a well constructed future world, the story is incredibly well plotted and clever. I care about what's going to happen to Morn and literally am at the edge of my seat waiting for something bad to happen. The emotional response is stronger than I've had with Feist and it's approaching what I feel reading GRRM's works. I'll read the third book and then assess.

3. In the meantime, I need to order other books on the reading list (Bujold, Willis, Weis/Hickman, Salvatore and someone else whom I am forgetting) because I don't have them at my local library. I will report more as the reading fest continues. I'll be at the library tomorrow and can get books from other libaries in the system easily.

Rob Munnelly
44. RobMRobM
Here is the post describing the reading list.


Feist - Magician "trilogy" of four books.

Weis/Hickman - Dragonlance trilogy.

Hobb - Farseer trilogy

Willis - Doomsday Book or To Say Nothing of the Dog

Bujold - Vorkosigan series

Salvatore - Dark Elf Trilogy
Ed Dyer
45. HumbleReader
...apparently at Myrelle’s orders. Nynaeve stalks off, wondering if Myrelle had some kind of personal issue with her...

Nynaeve and Theodrin both laugh, and Theodrin swiftly takes the opportunity to press Nynaeve to stop avoiding her and learn how to break her block. Nynaeve resists, but Theodrin is adamant, for Myrelle has asked her to make “special efforts”.

Just reading ahead today, at the point where Egwene and Siuan find Lan in Myrelle's camp. ACoS 12 A Morning of Victory
Myrelle pleads with Egwene that she had been "prepping" Nynaeve to take over Lan's bond, ever since she felt Lan's bond transfer, but Nynaeve isn't ready yet.

Well, it appears Myrelle was indeed working on Nynaeve, even if Nynaeve has no idea why. RJ linking forward at his best!

Have to say I missed both ends of that completely in previous reads :-(
Lindy Brown
46. lbrown
The Seanchan show up in Amador in LOC and then they move on to Ebou Dar in CoS.
James Jones
47. jamesedjones
23 & 28

Hang on. So is it Lay Butler? That just doesn't sound right...

I always thought it was Lee, like "wheee". Was I doing the 'Bridgette' Silverbow thing?
Rikka Cordin
48. Rikka
lover, Bryne. lover. it's easy, just say the word.

lover lover lover.


also: did I count three rimshots or four in today's jig?
Tess Laird
49. thewindrose
Hey -I am late to the party - 1999.
I think Freelancer missed Graendal's invite.

I agree with Freelancer on the way Byrne was thinking - alley/wife.

gagecreedlives - that's a definate yes on Elaida and Pedron both being under the effects of Fain.
Read Megalomania - both have a bad case.

Also, I think the case is still open on Theodrin.
Tess Laird
50. thewindrose
Also - I am d'ing and b'ing, and I want to know if someone forgot to let subwoofer back into the bunker - haven't heard from you lately:(
51. pileated
P. Niall = Dick Cheney with actual combat exprience.
craig thrift
52. gagecreedlives

Read it?! I'm living it baby. Oh Yeah

And I think you meant ally/wife. I did have a giggling fit because of the mental image of Bryne trying to convince Siuan to have a quickie between 2 Salidar buildings.
Tess Laird
53. thewindrose
Oh my! Well some posters will be happy about the alley at least.
Perfect looking bartender with no brains left - I need a drink. Sheesh, at least at Ishamael's parties there are zomaran!
54. NancyM
One thing that has always bugged me here is when Nyn is thinking of leaving except she's not sure how to steal horses. Didn't she steal horses from the Whitecloaks in TEOTW?
Andrew Lovsness
55. drewlovs
51. pileated

Gah... no politics, please.

Besides, I think historical figures provide even better examples that don't start sub-wars within our community.

Niall reminds me of Mussolini; during the early part of his control of Italy, the world could not figure out if he was a good or bad for the world. Time has told us how that worked out, and I'd imagine that a world controlled by Niall would work out to be the same way.
56. drothgery
I guess I don't like the Elaida / Niall comparison because Niall seemed generally competent, just lacking information (some of which he'd have trouble believing, true). Whereas Elaida's always just seemed angry (flying through tower training is not evidence of brainpower; time spent as novice/accepted correlates almost exactly to strength in the power -- hence Siuan, Moiraine, and Elaida spent very nearly the exact same amount of time as novices and accepted, but you'll never convince me Elaida's even close to as sharp as either Siuan or Moiraine).

If the Forsaken had a tenth of Niall's brainpower combined, Rand and the supergirls would be in much worse shape. He's the only bad guy we've seen a lot of who's both sane and not a dunce.
Leigh Butler
57. leighdb
gagecreedlives @ 36:

I answered the poll in the podcast! Before it was even invented! Because I am PSYCHIC!

(Okay, okay. My votes for (Lightside) people who are going to die are Alanna, Sheriam, and Gawyn. I am probably completely wrong.)

jamesedjones @ 47:

No, you had it right the first time. Pay no attention to that Skwid behind the curtain; the proper pronounciation of my name was something of a running joke on Usenet hundreds of years ago. Which makes Skwid OLD. Get off his lawn!
58. macpimp
for the poll:

birgitte, bashere, cadsuane
59. Junko
Why do a lot of people want Gawyn dead? I think it would be small consolation if an Amyrlin can have a warder consort of sort for being stuck in the tower all the time while everyone else is out adventuring.

Come on guys, let's give Egwene her little fun. :)
Maiane Bakroeva
60. Isilel
Gagecreedlives @36:

Im still sticking with my loony theory that the Red led by Galina and probably with Elaida’s knowledge have set up false dragons.

From what we have seen of Red POVs, and Elaida's in particular, they are constitutionally incapable of this sort of action. On the contrary, most/all of them would have gentled even the DR despite everything, exactly as Siuan and Moiraine feared.

And the idea comes from Ishamael, so yea. The truth content? It is interesting that Ishy and all the other Forsaken work so hard at undermining the WT. Despite all the Fail we have seen from AS the FS consider them a potentially potent adversary and force for the Light.
In fact, Ishy concentrating on the Tower so much during his 3K stint may have worked to the advantage of other channeling societies (WOs, Windfinders, etc) and is in great part responsible for the WT's many shortcomings.

Nacelle's discovery also shows that one needn't be super-strong to invent new things, nor does traditional WT education destroy one's creativity. Though as an aside it seems strange that she could develop such a weave without access to any male channelers.

I have a theory about the sudden peak of invention in WoT - the Pattern is trying to compensate for 3K years of Ishy's sabotage. Maybe it is associated with Rand's super-ta'veren need, maybe not. In any case, it explains the situation better than just linking it to strength, as some WOs/Windfinders were quite strong, yet unable historically to re-invent even things that they _knew_ were possible, such as Healing.

As to AS, I imagine that among other things a lot of them just hold their inventions back. After all, nothing except election to the Hall or being made head of an Ajah can change the pecking order, so there is little motivation to share discoveries except altruism.

And possibly there is a standing order for the BA to suppress anything too dangerous/useful. I mean, isn't it suspicious that the Reds didn't have something like Nacelle's weave in their arsenal since inception? As Far Madding and Cads ter'angreals show, the ways to detect saidin channeling were known at some point during the Breaking.
Rob Munnelly
61. RobMRobM
Leigh@57. I think you've got a good shot with Sheriam. Something's up with her from the beatings and not talking about it, and it wouldn't surprise me to turn tables on her punisher and go out in a blaze or glory. Alanna too - I could see her go nutty when Rand dies and show off those Battle Ajah skills and not be around for the rebirth. That would be awkward (Rand: "I'd like you to meet my three bonded wives, two of whom are having my children...and my friend Alanna over here"). Gawyn - I doubt that for several reasons: (1) Egwene loves him and will need post-TG fun (per Junko above); (2) he's part of ruling house of Andor and should be important; and (3) RJ/BS really need to redeem him for the happy ending. Such a great and likeable character in EOTW and first half of TGH, then so aggravating but described repeatedly as dangerous thereafter. It will be a hollow victory to kill him off. For the real happy ending, we need to get back to the old Gawyn.

Helen Peters
62. Helen
IIRC the Seanchan invaded Tanchico just as the supergirls escaped, all the confusion with Nyn losing Moggy, the riot started by Thom et al, sneaking out Amathera and in the background there was mention of the Seanchan landing.

Elayne's ability to weave weather is learnt, she spent a couple of weeks on a ship learning from a windfinder heading from Tear to Tanchico(?), so it's just good teaching and learning how to handle the huge weaves. Nyn's weather sense I always thought was more like foretelling, that now she's out of TR is coming to the fore with all the politicking she's around and so she's sensing upcoming conflict as well. When she was back at home possibly the biggest problem around would be when to sow the seed for this year's harvest, so that's all the info her foretelling used to give her.
63. Phantom
Birgitte will not die. Birgitte told us that Gaidal Cain is always born before her when the wheel spins them out. But Min’s viewing of Birgitte where Min realized who she was included auras that showed Birgitte with a man older than her and a man much younger than her and it was the same man. Conclusion: Birgitte will find Gaidal and have adventures with him in the fourth age, and she cannot do that if she is pushing up daisies. Even if you argue that those could be future lives, I think that still means they have to find each other in this lifetime in order to set up the conditions for a change in the way the wheel spins them out. So many characters have protection from death in these last books - Rand (sort of), Matt & Tuon (going to Seanchan), Perrin & Faile (rulers of Saldea), Avienda, Elayne and Min (3 on a boat), Berelain & (Galad?) (falls for man in white), Darlin and Caroline Damodred (married, he dies in bed, she survives him), Moirain and Thom (to be married). Probably Suian and Gareth (married), Morgase and Talinvor (married), Egwene and Gawyn (bonding and marriage), Nynaeve and Lan (marriage, country to refound).

Still I should not grouse too much, I like my heros to live and have happy lives (boo GRRM).

My choices for the poll; Bashere & Tenobia (I treat these as one because they are both so obvious), Jahar Narishma (certainly changes the meaning of ‘he who draws it again out will follow after him’), Rodel Iteralde (just cuz, I like him, but he has no protection and somebody HAS to die).
paul Hend
64. tugthis
Moggy, Moggy, Moggy. Once again she is screwing with the neophyte AS. She should have been brought to justice, or had summary judgment when first caught. It tickles me that two twenty somethings think they can out think and out weave a three thousand year old psychotic murderess.
Jane Smyth
65. Kaboom
concerning Nynaeve temper
It is described frequently how holding the power and channeling is addictive. As the only way Nynaeve can do this is when she is angry, I think she unconsciously stays angry so that she can feel the Source and be able to channel. Of course she also has many reasons to be consciously angry, but I think not nearly enough to justify her constant bad mood.

For the survey:
Sheriam According to some possible prophecies (Egwene accepted test) Beldeine will become her Keeper. The easiest way to do that would be if Sheriam dies.

Queen Tenobia and Bashere for the same reason as everybody

But not Gawyn just because Elaida wants his death so much, it will not happen
James Jones
66. jamesedjones
62 Helen

The Seanchan invasion that occured on the heels of Elayne and Nyneave leaving was the one in Ebou Dar. Tanchico might have been close, but it was still a few weeks later (we get a POV from Suroth while she is still on vay-cay in Tremalking).

Survey: Galad (wraped in a white cloak like a death shroud, anyone?), Alanna ('cause that bond she won't relinquish has to be a bad idea), Hopper's spirit by Slayer ('cause Perrin doesn't have anything to be all emo about, right now).
67. alreadymadwithniall
PeteP @9
I wouldn't quite say Niall is the male version of Elaida. Elaida has shown extremely bad leadership skills. For all his blindspots, Niall was a highly respected and effective leader of men.

Isilel @21
I'd agree. Numerous references have been made to Nynaeve and Elayne's "spotty" Tower education up to the current. Yet we don't see that remedied by having the two actually BE in class.

I don't think Logain is really bad. Whatever the sequence of events that lead to him proclaiming himself a False Dragon, he seems to be solidly in Rand's side now. Maybe it's because, as he said, Rand would make much more trouble than he ever did, and that's his payback?

RobMRob @26
As Lynnia said Moggy later admits the weave she was teaching them would do nothing except cause headaches. And she says so to somebody she had no reason to lie to. The Salidar AS discovery was IMHO completely unrelated.

As for the strange battles in the Borderland, I don't think they were actual battles. More likely some people heard rumors of armies heading in the same direction and automatically assumed there was a battle. Besides, by the time the Borderland rulers meet, no mention is made of any of them actually fighting.
68. Greenbuddha
Gareth byrne - siuan would be a great lover...seems obvious to me.
Anthony Pero
69. anthonypero
Hi all

These chapters sucked

By all, see you Monday
Jane Smyth
70. Kaboom
I also don't think there were actual battles in the Borderlands. When the rulers meet in the Black Hills, they spent considerable thoughts (if not actual discussion) on how they made extreme efforts to avoid being seen. That can hardly happen if they were fighting.
Antoni Ivanov
71. tonka

I think the Aes Sedai are letting Elayne and Nynaeve easily because of their remarkable discoveries , they are probably hoping in their free time to make more discoveries which they are (from Moghedien tho)

Why would Elaida acknowledge Leane. She has Beonin. If she presses Leane all the weaves Leane might tell will be common knowledge. Elaida won't be able to keep them to herself as she does now.It's not really in her interest to press Leane at all
Rob Munnelly
72. RobMRobM
already @67 - I agree that based on the text Moggy was messing with em.

@63 - as others here know from posts almost from the start of the series, I don't believe that Morgase and Tallavor will be together. Actually, let me amend my earlier death pool predication:

Tallanvor - he will die saving his Queen, allowing another to step into the breach.

Angelmar - Borderlanders pay the price.

Lots and lots of Aiel including all clan leaders and more than 1/2 of Wise Women - only a remnant remains.

Longshot that will tick me off as it happens, as I like her very much:
- Min. She doesn't have any future looking prophecies that ensure her survival and someone close to him will have to die for dramatic impact. Note it will happen after the three on a boat prophecy.

73. Freelancer

Hmm, and all this time I took the nick Leighdb as a phonetic pun to say Lady B. I mean, given how sneaky clever you are, and everything, it just made sense.

About the death pool/poll, Min has a viewing of Sheriam which is extremely vague, but there's nothing to suggest it has happened even through KoD:
Rays of silver and blue flashed about her fiery hair, and a soft golden light; Min could not say what it meant.

Doesn't mean she isn't going to bite it, but this seems to suggest some future recognition or significance, and not simply being Egwene's Keeper. At least with Logain's blue and gold halo/aura, Min is sure that it means glory and power to come, which strongly implies that he isn't on the death list either. There may be glory in death, yes, but not power.
Tess Laird
74. thewindrose
Why RobMRobM, who could it be to sweep an ex queen off her feet after all her tribulations? *wink*

Although Freelancer - there is glory and power in death, if you raise from the dead three days later. Whoops, wrong character.

Maybe Sheriam is crucial in the Black Ajah purge, the soft golden light her glory and redemtion in death.

Nobody, not even the Reds, are keeping Elaida in the loop any longer. I think Beonin even realizes(now) that Egwene is truly stong and who the Tower needs as Amyrlin. From Honey in the Tea - KoD:
[i]"I will do as you say," Beonin said with obvios reluctance. Her eyes hardened suddenly, but it was not for Egwene. "It would be enjoyable to see Elaida pulled down," she said in an unpleasant voice before hurrying away to join Melavaire.
Roger Powell
75. forkroot
It's not clear to me that Gawyn (or for that matter Egwene) is safe. There's still time for her to bond him pre-TG and then have both of them snuff it.

I think I've already apologized for being bloodthirsty but IMO the story will lack emotional "punch" unless we lose one or more beloved characters. Since fairly good arguments have been made for Rand, his harem, Perrin/Faile, Mat/Tuon, and Thom/Moiraine surviving ... perhaps Egwene and Gawyn will be the "fall couple".

It would be a shame if the "Harry Potter" series ends up with more emotional impact than WoT.
Tess Laird
76. thewindrose
forkroot - I don't think some of those other characters have an absolute 'get out of death' free card. It could be that the scene where Elayne, Aviendha, Min and Rand are altogether is during TG or just after, and there is no guarentee that Min will make it. For Elayne - she will have healthy babes, but that does not ensure she will survive beyond child birth. So we have Aviendha - who will have quadruplates from Rand - I think that means she will survive for sure. And, unless they get togeter soon, it will be after TG when Rand and Avi do this.
There seems to be a lot of speculation that Perrin and Faile will assume the Broken Crown, but again that is not for sure.
Beyond a doubt Tuon and Mat make it.
Thom and Moiraine will meet again, but they may be like(hey I love you) and then become cannon fodder during TG.
Personaly, I think Min is going die. Maybe Gawyn, but not Egwene.

Also, I don't think there will be the same nations after TG - definitly geo-politcal upheaval will occur, and I don't think nearly as much land wreakage will occur.
77. Daniel Holm

Unless your name is Obi-Wan.
Maiane Bakroeva
78. Isilel

They still have Nyn and El do senseless chores like clerical work and have El teach novices. There is more than enough time in SGs schedule to be filled by (very necessary, IMHO) training. I mean, Nyn must be the first Accepted since forever who can't string together 2 words in the Old Tongue! And again, why isn't some AS seriously working on Nyn's block? They don't consider Theodrin a sister, after all and usually it is the full AS who deal with blocks.

Why would Elaida acknowledge Leane. She has Beonin.

She has been moaning to herself for some time how she wanted the Amyrlin's eyes-an-ears network and how she would have tortured it out of S@L if only...
And now Leane, the person in charge of said network is in her clutches and... nothing. Add to this the lies about Logain, and Elaida should really want to slowly tear Leane apart instead of allowing her to while time in relative comfort and entertain a stream of visitors.

The only explanation that seems feasible to me is that Elaida still doesn't know the identity of the "wilder". But even so, she should wonder why the Greens aren't doing to her all the horrible things that are normally done to somebody falsely claiming an Ajah.

Thewindrose @76

If RJ was serious about a "bitter-sweet" ending and could bring himself to kill some main characters, then:

Perrin and Faile - they can assume the rulership of Saldea just in time to lead the troops to TG and die.

I also think that either Nyn and Lan or Egs and Gawyn would die and Gawyn could also die independently.

Min? Also a possibility.

Frankly, I hope that there is going to be some tragedy and some true Breaking in the end. IMHO, the Aiel ancestral memories chapter is the best in the books - and that's because it is both tragic and hopeful.
Alice Arneson
79. Wetlandernw
Geez, you guys, go watch the news for a while. Isn't there enough tragedy IRL, without having to have major tragedy in all our fantasy too?

FWIW, some classic (paraphrased) definitions:

Starts well, ends badly = Tragedy
Starts badly, ends well = Comedy
Starts badly, ends badly = Melodrama
Starts well, ends well = Romance

If WoT ended as tragically as some of you seem to want, it would descend into melodrama, which is essentially what a lot of the "gritty, dark, realistic" writing (of whatever genre) really is. IM(H?)O, of course. Oh, and note that this is a more classical definition of comedy, not the current "stand-up" kind of thing.
Lannis .
80. Lannis
Hi all, a little late this post, and most of what I'd have to say has been said already (and probably better than I would have said it), but I have this little tidbit to add to the "who's gonna die" thoughts...

So a couple of our past conversations connected during my musings, and it occurred to me that if Min died it would nullify the channeler/non-channeler problem of the Min/Rand relationship and their Happily Ever After(TM). If she kicks it, there'll be mucho reason for Rand to get all fired up (and remember his tears), and take a personal vendetta into the Last Battle--you know, on top of all his other craptacular baggage...

Also, Min can't have viewings of herself (yes, she saw herself in a viewing of Rand, but really, she can't view herself), so what if that's our big hint that her future is unknown? Unknown and therefore extremely in jeopardy?

I just finished Winter's Heart in my own reread, and in Cadsuane's POV she mentions a tab that Rand owes--what if Cadsuane is the one to kill Min, as a way to teach Rand tears? Justified in that wacky AS way by arguing it is for the greater good?! A giant owed-to-Cads item on the list!

Pick her apart, folks--we've got a ways to go until Monday. :)
81. Dacole
where did we see slayer here..missed that. Thanks!
Alice Arneson
82. Wetlandernw
That bit near the beginning where Elayne says she thinks she saw Rand, or someone who looks like him, in TAR. That's usually a clue that Slayer in his Luc persona is (or was) wandering around the neighborhood.
john mullen
83. johntheirishmongol
One of my fave old timer scifi writers was Leigh Brackett. She wrote what I would term Scifi-noir. If you can find some of her novels they are a fun read. She also wrote the first draft of SW:Ep V...along with several other movies including The Big Sleep and El Dorado.

The best Fiest books were the ones that he co-wrote with Janny Wurts about the other side of the gate. Very oriental culture, and fascinating characters.

I am going to throw my three names. I picked 3 because though there may be more deaths, I don't think a bloodbath is called for...

My three are Min, even though I like her best of any of the trio, she is one too many wives for Rand, so I think it makes plot sense.

I think Cadsuane is also a very likely candidate, because it would wrap up her life. Plus, she is a little annoying and I think it is because she is written so we won't miss her that much.

I think Gawyn has to die, heroically, after finding out that Morgase is alive because he has totally screwed up his life.

One that is very popular that I dont see is Bashere, especially with Tenobia. We hardly even see Tenobia. It makes no sense for them both to die so that they can clear the way for Perrin/Faile because they already have the Two Rivers and they cannot rule both. I think the logic there is very weak.
Sydo Zandstra
84. Fiddler
Yay, I have some spare time again. ;)

@Freelancer: sorry to have dropped out of our discussion in the wednesday post. I'm not always online, and if you don't mind I'm not going there to catch up.

Off topic, well not totally, has anybody ever tried to visualize how a Myrddraal would look? Billy Corgan fits the bill in this clip:

Billy the Myrddraal

When I saw it first, I was thinking 'Myrddraal!'. Shows how deep WoT can get into somebody... :s

Yet, I do like the Smashing Pumpkins. :P
Antoni Ivanov
85. tonka

Well, the truth is that I don't understand it quite well either.Maybe they have some training but it's off screen.I think they mentioned somewhere they have lessons. But in any case I offer you an explanation that is good enough IMO

As for Theodrin being assigned. You have just only two examples Tarna and Sheriam. It's not enough to say that always Aes Sedai is working on it.

If you can offer me just one single quote that Elaida is thinking these things about Leane ? Everyone you said was concerning Siuan not Leane.
Elaida never thought two things about Leane.
And now Leane is again Aes Sedai. They are protocols , you cannot just torture an Aes Sedai.That was mentioned in KOD for why the Sisters didn't use more cruel methods to learn the weaves Leane knows.
James Jones
86. jamesedjones
83 johntheirishmongol

Re: Bashere and Tenobia dying

The logic comes from a viewing Min had in TEOW where she saw a broken crown when she looked at Perrin. And you might be forgetting that Perrin is also the Lord of Ghealdan. Already being the Lord of the Two Rivers hasn't stopped him from improving that nation. Plus, there's nothing on the map, aside from Baerlon, that anyone puts any effort into ruling between the Two Rivers and Saldaea. So... why not? Plus, there's all the 'darkness' when Min looks at Bashere. We figure it has to mean... something.
Antoni Ivanov
87. tonka
Two Rivers is part of Andor and Elayne has been thinking on a few occasions that she has to take care of this.

And Perrin is not Lord of Ghealdan, he is Liege Lord to the Queen of Ghealdan in the name of the Dragon Reborn. There is difference.
Antoni Ivanov
88. tonka
Two Rivers is part of Andor and Elayne has been thinking on a few occasions that she has to take care of this.

And Perrin is not Lord of Ghealdan, he is Liege Lord to the Queen of Ghealdan in the name of the Dragon Reborn. There is difference.
89. simonr
In terms of characters dying, I still wish that in WH(?) that Elayne, when captured, would have been killed. I know there are prophecies saying that she has many other things to do, but that's what would have made it so fantastic. It would have thrown everything that the books have suggested about prophecy on their head, as well as having been incredibly shocking. More so than Moirane, I think.

Alas, she survived.
90. alreadymadwithrandintar
Wetlandernw @82
I always thought that was actually Rand she saw. This would have been around the same time Rand wanders around TAR scouting Illian's defensive installations.
91. twicemarked
tonka @ 87
Two Rivers was part of Andor. Just like the White Tower was the only allowed channeler organization. The genie is out of the bottle, and you cann't put it back in.

Like Uno said, the Dragon Reborn breaks all bonds. While Elayne wants to, the Post TG Andor will be different from the pre TG one. Insisting everything will be back to the old status quoto is the recipe for disaster, just like Elaida and Niell found out. It is just like Amathera demands to be put back as the Panarch of Tarabon as if nothing happened.

In the same vein, I believe Egwene will also have a rude awakening when her idea of AS in the White Tower being above other channelers, like WOs, wind finders, the Kin, damanes, Asha'man, whatelse have you, post TG gets tested.

Isilel @ 78
The way I look at it, to break the block has more to do with the blocker rather than the teacher. Theodrin was trying all kinds of strange things, for example "no sleep for a night". From the example given, usually someone gives an idea and the blocker works on it. Having a Sister instead of an Accepted does not make a difference. What is the AS going to do differently? "Have two nights no sleep in a roll?"

alreadymad @ 90

I think you get location wrong. Nynaeve only looked around in Tar Valon, and Rand is not inspecting Illian's defense there. So it would be Slayer.
Helen Peters
92. Helen
88. tonka
And Perrin is not Lord of Ghealdan, he is Liege Lord to the Queen of Ghealdan in the name of the Dragon Reborn. There is difference.

And the queen of Ghealdan swore fealty to Perrin's wife, we could go round in circles here, Perrin reports to Alliandre, Alliandre reports to Faile, Faile lets Perrin be her lord and master.....
Jane Smyth
93. Kaboom
I just recently read the end of aCoS and this time through the battle with Sammael made me realize something.

Rand's battles with the male forsakens are as different with Nynaeve's battle with Moghedien as Saidin is from saidar.

Everytime Rand battles a forsaken it is attack and run. Lots of running around. Whereas with the women it was cut the flows of the other and counter attack, all while standing in one place.

Its aggressive (males) vs passive (females)much like Saidin/Saidar
Lannis .
94. Lannis
@ Kaboom... you're right! I never noticed that before... interesting.
Antoni Ivanov
95. tonka

I think you misunderstood me and misremember . Alliandre swore fealty to Perrin and through him to Rand, but that doesn't make him Lord of Ghealdan. And Faile is Liege Lady to Alliandre through her marriage with Perrin.


It all depends on what Elayne decides to do. It is not unbelievable if House Aibara becomes one of the great houses in Andor. I don't really know though.
96. alreadymadwithtarslayer
twicemarked @91
Ah but it was Elayne who saw him. And she never specified where. Rand for his part mostly wandered around Illian but was not averse to wandering elsewhere, Tear for example. And by extension, any other place he controlled in the real world, like Caemlyn.

Kaboom @93
It's just not Rand. Even the Asha'man who were there at the start of the Illian campaign do the same thing in their 2-on-1 and 3-on-1 battles against Sammael.
Jane Smyth
97. Kaboom
AMW @96

That's true. So replace "Rand" with "Males" in that statement! :)
Tess Laird
98. thewindrose
From Leigh's post: She tells Elayne that she thinks she saw Rand in Tel’aran’rhiod while searching for Leane in Tar Valon, or someone who “looked a little like him”

When any of them see Slayer, it is usually followed by he looked like Rand or looked like Lan.
But Rand is also running around T'a'R, he see's the map Suian makes for Egwene on how to get to Salidar. And he checks out Sammauls army as well.
Tess Laird
99. thewindrose
From KoD Outside The Gates:
And this is Alliandre Maritha Kigarin, Queen of Ghealdan, Blessed of the Light, Defender of Garen's Wall. And my liege woman. Ghealdan is under my protection." Fool thing to say, but it had to be said.
"Our arrangement doesn't speak to that, my Lord." Tylee said carefully. "I don't decide where the ever Victorious Army goes."
"Just so you know, Banner-General. And tell those above you they can't have Ghealdan."

Also, after Nynaeve Heals stilling, every Yellow in the Salidar camp decides to take a hand in breaking Nyn's block. When Thoedrin is having her block worked on, Sherimin may have been in charge, but was not 'there' doing all the work. She gave orders to others - I would think accepted to carry out. Theodrin told Nyn that she was in class with a very good looking boy. As it turns out the he had a twin, and when the "boy" took off his top and showed Theodrin that he was actualy a she, Theodrins block was broken. Sherimin was not teaching that class, but probably was giving an accepted direction. Same goes now with Theodrin and Nyn - Theodrin has the job, but I am sure she reports to an Aes Sedei. Now that Nyn has Healed Stilling, ever Yellow wants her, and take a much more personal approach.
This tells me in a way, that Moggy wasn't teaching the girls anything spectacular, otherwise personal Sister involvement would hve happened much sooner. Also remember that, Nyn and Elayne decide to start funneling all 'discoveries' through Elayne, becuase it would seem strange that someone who could only channel when angry could come up with so many 'discoveries'.
charlene barina
100. charlener0
re: breaking of bonds, I think there is some historical precedent for this, though not necessarily on such an interpersonal level. I found this link pretty interesting, though: Societal collapse
101. alreadymadwithrandandtar
Is Sammaul somehow related to Darthmaul?

Seriously though, unlikely it may be for Rand to wander around Tar Valon even in TAR, we don't really know for sure. If the man got curious enough, he knows very few can challenge him successfully there and you know what they say about curiosity and the cat.
Tess Laird
102. thewindrose
101 alreadymad-
My bad - that would pretain more to Demandred and his apprentice(s) err I mean proxies.

I really don't think Rand would be dinking around in Tar Valon in T'a'R, or for real. We do know for a fact that Slayer has been there - as Luc, he kills a Gray Man in the White Tower after he fails to kill Egwene. Also, he only takes orders from the Forsaken or the DO. So, if he was hanging around TV, he might have been getting some orders from Mesaana.
Michael Johnson
103. ZshadeZ
I JUST NOW found this update, for some reason it's not linked from the main list. o_O
Alice Arneson
104. Wetlandernw
edited out, since it just double-posted when I tried to edit. Hmph.
Alice Arneson
105. Wetlandernw
I'm just saying that usually when we see the words "someone who looked like Rand" (or Lan, as mentioned above) it's a red flag for Slayer. If it doesn't come up again soon, it may not matter. Personally, I assume it was Slayer, not Rand, if only because Rand has a stinking lot of stuff to do besides wander around Tar Valon, and we've not seen any reason to think he was there. Slayer, on the other hand, frequently does nefarious sneakings with no reason we get to see.
106. birgit
Bryne: Siuan would be a better what?

Maybe a better leader than Sheriam's circle.

Or is he trying to be worthy of his foretold glory?

Does Logain know about Min's viewings? She doesn't tell everybody about them.

Who is that who is kneeling to Rand on the cover? Is this supposed to be the kneeling scene at the end of Dumai's Wells? If so, I'm curious as to the woman's identity.

I always thought it was Taim, not a woman (AS have the saidar symbol on their stoles, not the old AS symbol).

Elaida knows she stilled Leane, she won't believe that a young channeler can be her.

Maybe a female Forsaken (Cyndane?) kills Min and Rand overcomes his problem with killing women when he avenges her.
107. altarego

Actually, after having reread LoC through WH recently, I've come to a brand new conclusion about the whole Taim/Demandred/Black Tower thing. One that makes perfect sense:

Taim isn't Demandred, we know that. But I don't think Demandred had any 'major' interaction with Taim at all. I think Taim may have been leaning toward the darkside for a bit, but I believe his real tutor was *Osangar*.

The first clue is when Rand selects Dashiva to accompany him after Dumai's Wells. Taim is both surprised and frustrated and attempts to get Rand to choose someone else. Why would Taim be frustrated? Wouldn't he want to get a Chosen as close to Rand as possible for monitoring? Could it be that his mentor is being inconveniently removed from the Black Tower?

It also makes sense from a balance issue that Osangar goes to the Black Tower and Arangar goes to the White Tower; the right and left hand daggers stab at the heart of the defenses.

Now, that's not to say that Demandred hasn't had any influence on the Black Tower or Taim at all, but I think it more of a random "Let the Lord of Chaos rule..." relationship.
Maiane Bakroeva
108. Isilel
Kaboom @93:

Everytime Rand battles a forsaken it is attack and run. Lots of running around. Whereas with the women it was cut the flows of the other and counter attack, all while standing in one place.

Well, it is more a consequence of Jordan's insistence of sticking his women into impractical clothing , which isn't conducive to athletical activity, even in battles ;).
Also, women can detect each other's channeling better than men, so this tactics would be of more limited use unless they were inverting the flows and masking their ability - which for some reason the Femsaken weren't doing in battle so far and others didn't know how to.

Oh, and now that I remember the SGs fights with the Seanchan in TGH, they were certainly running around and jumping a lot, skirts or not.

It surely looks like a good idea to move constantly during OP battles with limited sight, unless you must defend something stationary, like Cadsuane's escort did during the Cleansing . Ditto not to wear anything that screams "channeler!" like silk dresses or even black coats. Oh, well.

Altarego @107

IMHO, Taim made an impression of a taught channeler rather than a true wilder from the moment he appeared and Osan'gar has been resurrected too recently to be his first mentor.

IMHO, Taim, was well aware that Os was another Darkfriend, likely FS-trained and was afraid that he'd give himself away because he was so erratic and consequently expose the fact that Taim has tolerated and promoted exactly the kind of man that Rand ordered him to be on guard against.

Also, let's not forget the usual DF competitiveness. Taim wanted to be close to Rand himself - he wouldn't be happy about another powerful, knowledgeable male channeler DF who isn't beholden to him in any way getting there instead.
Richard Boye
109. sarcastro

"Who is that who is kneeling to Rand on the cover? Is this supposed to be the kneeling scene at the end of Dumai's Wells? If so, I'm curious as to the woman's identity."

I always thought it was Taim, not a woman (AS have the saidar symbol on their stoles, not the old AS symbol).

Aes Sedai wear the Flame of Tar Valon, in white, set against a disc of their Ajah color on their shawls (in the case of a White sister, the text even says that the only thing distinguishing the white Flame from the white background is 'black stitching'). Some Aes Sedai also tend to have their Ajah color disc/White flame logo embroidered on their cloaks - 'largely on the back' and also a smaller version on the breast.

So, what we have on the cover of LoC is a Red sister* - if you look, it's not really the yin/yang symbol of the AoL Aes Sedai - in that symbol, the edges of both the white 'flame' and the black 'dragon's fang' are flush with the border of the circle that contains them. Here, the white 'flame' is more centered in the red circle, with the artist Darryl Sweet adding some white decorative stuff in the upper right and lower left quadrant.

Yours in WOT Sartorial Triviality, I Remain


*(the cover of the e-book has the full figure of the Aes Sedai on it, not wrapped around onto the spine)
110. Aye Aye Sedai
However - Reds would not wear blue as blues won't wear red. Also I think that is a random Bat in the sky and not a raken - no neck and no tail visible.
Tess Laird
111. thewindrose
altarego @107- Osangar as a tutor definitly has merit. I hadn't ever thought of that, but it does have some good supporting points. Also, when Moridin is confirmed nae'blis, it would make sense that he is giving direction, and after Osangar gets killed again, Moridin probably snaps him up - Taim does have the Moridin color scheme going on in KoD.
Francesco Paonessa
112. ErrantKnave
@40 Aegnor: All the time, buddy. All the time. If you ask me, the real Lord of Chaos is Rumour (or Rumor if the Lord uses American spelling).
John Mann
113. jcmnyu
Three good guys most likely to die in the last 3 books...

1) Galad - I still think it is his blood on the rocks
2) Juilin Sandar - Not everyone can live happily ever after. Sorry, Thera.
3) Loial - The saddest chapter in the whole series.
Kurt Lorey
114. Shimrod
edited to remove incorrect information as corrected by tonka @115.
Antoni Ivanov
115. tonka

And another problem is that there is no such scene, I am completely certain of that.I will be very shocked if you can prove it otherwise but you won't be able since there is no such scene.

Probably you are mistaking Kisman for Taim. It was Kisman and co. that received orders from Moridin, Demandred and Taim to kill Rand. Yes from three of them separately.

One more thing : . Aran'gar says that Osan'gar(Dashiva) and Demandred were responsible for watching (Winter Heart ,Ch 13). So it's likely that Demandred is somehow entangled with the Black Tower
116. kab1
I'm chiming in a bit late here, but I would agree that it's Slayer that Nynaeve sees in TAR.
117. kab1
RFife- congrats on the Robot Overlord Contest!
118. benpatient
I am *twitching* already...sigh.
119. CalaLily

I don't think Egwene wants the WT to be above all channelers so much as a central location for female channelers. A touchstone, if you will. I see Aes Sedai coming to mean more what it did in the Age of Legends, with the Tower slowly absorbing the teaching and cultures of the Sea Folk and Aiel along with that already established in the Westlands. So you'll have Windfinders who are also Aes Sedai, and Wise Ones who are also Aes Sedai. I imagine that eventually it would get to the point where not only do Tower novices/Accepted train in the Tower, but they would end up doing a year or so apprenticeship with the Aiel and Sea Folk, who in turn would send their apprentices to work a year or so in the Tower.

I also imagine that some sort of free flow of sisters and Asha'man would travel back and forth between the White and Black Towers, if they still exist after TG. It would really suck to have the channeling world start to get back into "balance" only to have all the headway completely shattered after Tar'mon Gai'don. I'm hoping that Logain's glory includes forging a lasting relationship with the Amyrlin Seat, at least, and SOME sort of respect is established with the Aiel and Sea Folk.
120. MasterAlThor

no new post

Alright that does it. I'm gonna go pout in the courner until TOR puts up the new post
121. alreadymadwithIshy'spupil
If you people are right about Taim learning from the Forsaken then that means Asha'man training is closer to AoL standards than White Tower training. Hmmmm...
122. Hopper
My link for chapters 10-11 is broken, it just brings me back to the main page. And the link for this post didn't show up until today... Is anyone else having website issues???
Michael Johnson
123. ZshadeZ
Yeah, the site is being a bit effed link wise on these last two. Easiest way is to watch Leigh's profile and click from there for the latest.
124. Hopper
Much thanks! I was starting to get the shakes.
125. Alphashard
First off don't listen to kutulu , I need those links when you make references to things I have no clue what is. Like your link to "Lampshade Hanging" I had no idea it had a name or was considered bad writing.

Why did you think Thom and Juluin had fallen in a plot hole?

I hate Whitecloak chapters as well, it was hard not to be angry with any character in that chapter.
126. Ellie Angel
I get fed up with Jordan's world for two reasons:
1) screwed up sexual politics rife with deep distrust. It's hard to find a relationship exempt from it.
2) the quickness with which everyone resorts to beating on everyone else. Seriously, how many times do people resort to physical violence? It gets tedious.

Both recurring elements are so relentlessly bleak that they eventually soured what joy I took in the series' innovation and distinctness early on. I remember Book 6 as being the serious beginning of my disenfranchisement with the WOT. That and the slow grinding of all significant action to nearly a shuddering halt.

Nynaeve makes a big distinction in this chapter between switching Moghedian through the a'dam and "real" torture, but she is standing on a butter-greased slope, especially given her big lecture to the sul'dam way back in Book 2. I think it's the big reason Moggy had to be busted out for narrative reasons -- any longer with the a'dam and Nynaeve or Elaine would have had their moral event horizon breached.

I know human history is full of people being crappy to each other, but I find the all-consuming crappiness of nearly every character in Books 6-10 to be the biggest knock against this series.
127. yasiru89
On what Bryne meant, it was probably just that Siuan would be a better ally (which would explain the glower since she was being frustrating to him right then). Remember the Borderland saying, 'better to have one woman on your side than ten men'? Just a guess.
William McDaniel
128. willmcd
I like how Nyaneve senses "what almost seemed contentment" mixed in with Moghedien's fear while she's teaching the "detect a man channeling" weave. Nynaeve assumes it's because of the innate joy of teaching. Nope; it's 'cause she's got you practicing a weave to give yourself headaches! Another good subtle joke.

The whole "Red Ajah set up Logain" thing is so confusing. I'm pretty sure we know that Siuan came up with the whole thing (in TFoH Ch27), but seen through Nynaeve's eyes Logain's story is so convincing that every time I read it I start to question whether or not it really did happen.

Niall's perspective on the Last Battle is pretty interesting. In his megalomania, instead of a titanic struggle between the Dragon and he Dark One, as everybody else views it, he sees it as a titanic struggle between the Whitecloaks (and especially Niall himself) and Rand, the lackey of Tar Valon.

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