May 18 2010 2:17pm

The Wheel of Time Re-read: The Path of Daggers, Part 8

Allo allo! Wheel of Time Re-read, here! Wotcher!

Today’s entry covers Chapters 11 and 12 of The Path of Daggers, in which I valiantly battle the eeeevil forces of (a) rampant apathy and (b) wanton conspiracy-theory nutcasery. Go me!

Previous re-read entries are here. The Wheel of Time Master Index is here, in which you can find links to news, reviews, and all manner of information regarding the newest release, The Gathering Storm, and for WOT-related stuff in general.

This re-read post contains spoilers for all currently published Wheel of Time novels, up to and including Book 12, The Gathering Storm. If you haven’t read, read at your own risk.

WILL SHE PREVAIL against the dastardly doings of the Deadly Doldrums in the tin-foil-hatted Dungeon of Despair? Dunno!

Chapter 11: Questions and an Oath


What Happens
In a barn, Rhiale tells Sevanna that the Seanchan soldier they were interrogating is dead, and opines that they should have let the Maidens do this. Someryn thinks he told them much before he died; Sevanna eyes Someryn’s excessive cleavage and jewelry, and wonders whether Someryn is copying her or competing with her. Meira thinks the man told them nothing worth knowing; they already knew his people were in Amador. Barely hiding her contempt, Sevanna tells them they know why the Wise Ones had to interrogate him in secret, lest his lies about hundreds of thousands more of his people on the way frighten the rest of the Shaido.

“They are right to fear,” [Tion] said in a stony voice. “I am afraid, and take no shame in it. The Seanchan are many if they are no more than took Amador, and we are few. You have your sept around you, Sevanna, but where is my sept? Your wetlander friend Caddar and his tame Aes Sedai sent us through his holes in the air to die. Where are the rest of the Shaido?”

The others quickly align themselves with Tion against Sevanna, even Someryn and Modarra. Sevanna sneers, and tells them she suspected Caddar would betray them, which is why she took every Wise One who can channel with her, and points out that the alternative—staying in Kinslayer’s Dagger to be hunted down—was worse. She says they are in a “fat, soft” land now, ripe for the picking, and they will make Caddar pay eventually. This doesn’t appear to mollify the others, and Tion asks if she has given up her plan to marry the Car’a’carn; Sevanna replies she has given up nothing, but that is not important at the moment. She stalks out of the barn, trying to calm her sudden nervousness that these women could easily do to her what they had to Desaine. Outside, she tells the head Maiden Efalin to bury the body and hide the grave, disgusted that Efalin is actually letting her worry show openly. She heads off back to the manor house, and the Wise Ones emerge and follow her, talking among themselves; what she hears makes Sevanna grimace.

Where were the rest of the septs, and had Caddar been a spear hurled by Rand al’Thor, and how many Seanchan were there, and even did they really ride lizards? Lizards! These women had been with her from the first. She had guided their feet step by step, but they believed they had helped plan every move, believed they knew the destination. If she was losing them now…

Sevanna feels better as she surveys the thousands of Jumai Shaido going about their business on the large manor estate, and the wonderful docility of the many wetlander gai’shain, including the family that had once owned this estate. She overhears the Wise Ones discussing what a disaster it had been going against the Aes Sedai at Dumai’s Wells, and tells them sharply that they were winning until Rand al’Thor joined in; the Aes Sedai are nothing. They are interrupted by a man named Kinhuin, who tells them the Mera’din (Brotherless) ask for the Wise Ones’ judgment; the Jumai say they cannot take their share from this place because they are not Jumai, but the Brotherless say it is really because they outnumber the Shaido two to one. Even the Wise Ones are hard-put to conceal their dislike for the Mera’din, who had abandoned clan and sept rather than follow Rand al’Thor, but Sevanna tells him that the other six Wise Ones will judge his case. She says she must stand aside, since she is Jumai herself, but she is sure they will speak in favor of the Mera’din. The Wise Ones are displeased at this, but Sevanna thinks to herself that Kinhuin will remember she spoke for the Brotherless. Once alone, she heads off to do something more important.

Galina is being punished for slapping a Wise One (Belinde); she is in a sack suspended over hot coals, covered with itching powder, howling in pain and fury both. Sevanna appears, and she and Belinde make fun of her “sniveling” for a moment before the Maidens cut Galina down. Sevanna wonders aloud if Galina has been “softened” enough, and tells her that she can stop being da’tsang if she swears to obey Sevanna in all things. Without hesitation, Galina immediately agrees, thinking that she would obey until the moment she sees an opening.

“Then you will not object to swearing your oath on this,” Sevanna said, tossing something down in front of her.

Galina’s scalp crawled as she stared at it. A white rod like polished ivory, a foot long and no thicker than her wrist. Then she saw the flowing marks carved into the end toward her, numerals used in the Age of Legends. One hundred eleven. She had thought it was the Oath Rod, somehow stolen from the White Tower. That also was marked, but with the numeral three, which some thought stood for the Three Oaths. Maybe this was not what it seemed. Maybe. Yet no hooded viper from the Drowned Lands coiled there could have frozen her so still.

Therava appears with a dozen more Wise Ones, and wants to know when Sevanna was planning on telling the rest of them about this oath; Galina goes ice-cold at her voice. Sevanna sneers, and Galina cannot understand how she has the nerve to stand up to these women when she cannot even channel. Therava seizes Galina’s hair and yanks her upright, and Galina thinks of how she had fantasized about visiting dire retribution on every one of these women—all except Therava, who filled her nightmares. Therava tells Sevanna to give Galina to her if she wants Galina broken; she will soon obey without Caddar’s “toy”. Sevanna and the others all start arguing whether the “binder” would work any better than the “traveling box”, and Galina seizes the distraction to lunge for the white rod, desperate for anything that will keep her from Therava’s clutches. Therava steps on her hand before she reaches it (Galina doesn’t dare move). She and Sevanna negotiate to have the oath be to all of them, but with Sevanna and Therava foremost. Galina thinks that if this rod was like the Oath Rod in the Tower, it could remove oaths as well as impose them, and as Therava channels into the rod, swears to obey every Wise One present in all things, especially Therava and Sevanna.

The last hope that this “binder” was something else vanished as Galina felt the oath settle on her, as if she suddenly wore a garment that covered her far too tightly from her scalp to the soles of her feet. Throwing back her head, she screamed. In part that was because it suddenly seemed as if the burning of her skin was being pressed deep into her flesh, but mainly, it was pure despair.

“Be quiet!” Therava said sharply. “I do not want to listen to you wailing!” Galina’s teeth clicked shut, nearly biting her tongue, and she struggled to swallow her sobs. Nothing but obedience was possible, now.

Therava tests out the oath by making Galina confess that she had wished harm on the Wise Ones; satisfied, she takes the rod and gives Galina a series of orders, including that she will not channel without permission. Sevanna angrily demands the rod back, but Therava informs her that certain decisions have been made, and just as the clan chief needs a Wise One to advise him, so does she who speaks for the chief, and Therava will be that advisor. Sevanna glares at them all for a moment, then asks icily for this advice; Therava answers that they should move away from these Seanchan and into the Mountains of Mist, to establish a stronghold from which they can work on reuniting the scattered Shaido. Sevanna agrees that they should move, but insists on east, not north. Therava warns her about the consequences of too often ignoring a Wise One’s advice, but Sevanna just laughs at her, saying they will all go down if she does; she has made sure of that. This makes the Wise Ones wary, and Galina tries to make herself take note of this byplay through her misery as possible ammunition. Suddenly a slight flurry of snow falls, melting before it reaches the ground; the Wise Ones gape, having never seen snow, but Galina is more astonished, wondering why the Great Lord would have “loosened his grip on the world”. Therava demands an explanation from Galina, but when Galina explains, is contemptuous of this “snow” being a problem.

Galina clamped her jaws shut on explaining about snowfalls, aghast that her instinct had been to curry favor. Aghast as well at the small pang of pleasure that keeping the information back gave. I am the Highest of the Red Ajah! she reminded herself. I sit on the Supreme Council of the Black Ajah! They sounded like lies. This was not fair!

Sevanna tries to take Galina with her, but Therava refuses, and has Galina heel her like a dog. Galina scurries after her, trying desperately to think of a way out, and unable to come up with one.

Sevanna: Is annoying. And loses a rod. The En—argh.

(Well, but she is!)

I really hate the smell of ennui in the recap, because it means I have to sit there and struggle to come up with something interesting to say about something I really have no interest in at all.

And I don’t. Blah blah Shaido, blah blah Galina, blah blah blee blah bloo blah bleh.


Okay. Something interesting. Um.

Well, I will say this is where you can first really start to tell the Shaido are beginning to succumb to a culture-wide depression. In this, Jordan had obviously known of the studies done on cultures which, for one reason or another (usually conquest, subsumation, and/or decimation by another culture), essentially perceive themselves as having lost their identity as a people, and the correlation of unusually high rates of suicide, depression, and alcoholism within the remnants of such societies.

Of course, the Shaido haven’t technically been conquered, subsumed, or even really decimated (though I suppose Dumai’s Wells counts as a good try), but nevertheless their old way of life has been completely destroyed. Granted, this is true of all of the Aiel (and the rest of the Aiel are not exactly shiny happy people these days either), but I think the difference here is that the Shaido collectively (if subconsciously) realize that unlike the rest of the Aiel, their own uprooting was only partially due to outside forces, and owes just as much if not more to their own deliberate rejection of Aiel tradition, prophecy, and law, by following Couladin (and later Sevanna) instead of Rand. Basically, the Shaido know themselves to be traitors to their own people, no matter how justified they may believe that betrayal to be.

And there is no hatred more destructive than self-hatred, my friends. Even their dislike of the Brotherless is symptomatic of that self-loathing, for the Mera’din are basically nothing more than a mirror held up to someone who doesn’t want to see what he looks like. And we will see over the course of this storyline how this cultural self-destruct sequence progresses, until by the time Perrin stages his rescue of Faile, the Shaido are all but falling apart at the seams anyway.

Even Sevanna, possibly the most willfully blind character in WOT (which is saying something), notes how many of the Shaido are subtly (at first) abandoning their social mores and attitudes. She views it with disgust, of course, instead of the alarm any remotely competent leader would have on seeing such warning signs in her people, but there you go.

Galina: Still in a world of suck. Still think she deserves it. Still feel sorry for her anyway.

Oath Rod Part Deux: I… don’t have much to say on it, since it pretty much does what it says on the tin. It’s too bad (sort of) that this whole plotline kind of flails away without Sevanna ever getting to try her bright idea of attempting to use it on Rand, though.

Because that? Would have been high-LARIOUS. “See Sevanna. See Sevanna smushed like grape. Die, Sevanna, die!” Ah, well, I can still dream.

Therava: Weelllll… this chapter is notably less on the sexual element to her sadism that I noted before (and which some people vehemently disagreed with me on, as is their right and privilege). I seem to recall it gets ratcheted back up again later, though, so I will withhold judgment (and commentary) on the matter till we see them again. I will instead just say yikes and leave it at that for now.

(Wow, apparently I can come up with something to say about anything. I’m not sure this should be considered a compliment.)

Chapter 12: New Alliances

What Happens
Graendal forges a letter, regretting that there had not been a transcriber among the items she had removed from Illian after Sammael’s death. She seals the letter with the sigil of Alsalam, King of Arad Doman, and gives it to a slightly-Compelled courier named Nazran, who recites the story he is to give Rodel Ituralde (that a Lady Tuva brought it from Alsalam before dying of wounds from a Gray Man attack). She sends him off with satisfaction of how the letter will increase chaos in Arad Doman, as well as serve her own ends. She toys with a small gold ring, pleased and surprised that an angreal tuned to women had been in Sammael’s stash.

A pleasant surprise to have time to find much of anything useful with al’Thor and those puppies who called themselves Asha’man constantly in and out of Sammael’s chambers in the Great Hall of the Council. They had stripped it bare of what she had not taken. Dangerous puppies, all of them, especially al’Thor. And she had not wanted to risk anyone being able to draw a line from Sammael to her.

A chime sounds as the beginnings of a gateway form, and Graendal is bemused that someone is observing the old courtesies, and weaves to send a chime back. The gateway opens to admit two women dressed in identical red and black gowns; one is Moghedien, but Graendal does not recognize the other, a short, imperious young woman with long silver hair and vivid blue eyes, and an “impressive” bosom. Moghedien introduces the girl as Cyndane, which makes Graendal smile, as the name means “last chance” in the Old Tongue; she notes that Cyndane seems to know what it means, and does not like it at all. Cyndane strides across the room and demands to know if Graendal knows Sammael is dead; Graendal notes her strength in the Power when she gets closer, and is astonished to discover the girl is stronger than Graendal herself. She makes light of her connection to Sammael, saying he importuned her to join in various schemes but that she always put him off, and she suspected something “dire” had happened when he stopped showing up. She asks Moghedien where she found Cyndane, deeming her a “remarkable find”, but Cyndane snaps that the name is all she needs to know, and asks if she’s noticed the weather lately. Graendal continues to ignore her, asking Moghedien what this is all about.

“You make a mistake, Graendal.” A chilly smile barely curved Cyndane’s full lips; she was enjoying this. “I lead between us. Moghedien is in a bad odor with Moridin for her recent mistakes.”

Wrapping her arms around herself, Moghedien shot the silver-haired little woman a scowl as good as any spoken confirmation. Suddenly Cyndane’s big eyes opened even wider, and she gasped, shuddering.

Moghedien’s glare turned malicious. “You lead for the moment,” she sneered. “Your place in his eyes is not far better than mine.” And then she gave a start and shivered, biting her lip.

Graendal doesn’t know what’s going on, but seats herself in a show of casualness and asks who this Death person is they keep talking about. Cyndane answers that Moridin is Nae’blis, and the Great Lord has decided it’s time for Graendal to serve him. Graendal angrily declares this nonsense; how could someone she’s never even heard of be Nae’blis? She tells them to leave, and Moghedien suddenly channels to put out every light in the room; instantly Graendal flings herself out of her chair and weaves a light, so she can see to put webs of Compulsion on them both. It works, and they both gaze at her adoringly; Graendal commands Moghedien to tell her what the purpose of all this was, and Moghedien begins to weep, begging her to serve Moridin lest she get them all killed. Graendal sees that both she and Cyndane are terrified, and suddenly the One Power vanishes from her, extinguishing the light.

Behind her, a voice rasped like rock being ground to dust. “The Great Lord thought you might not take their word, Graendal. The time when you could go your own way has passed.” A ball of… something… appeared in the air, a dead black globe, but a silver light filled the room. The mirrors did not shine; they seemed to dull in that light.

[…] She gaped at the Myrddraal standing there, pale and eyeless and clothed in black deeper than the ball, but larger than any she had ever seen. It had to be the reason she could not sense the Source, but that was impossible! Except… Where had that strange sphere of black light come from if not from it? She had never felt the same fear others did at a Myrddraal’s gaze, not to the same degree, yet her hands rose on their own, and she had to snatch them down to keep from covering her face.

She is unnerved to see that Moghedien and Cyndane are prostrating themselves before the Myrddraal, and asks uneasily if it is a messenger from the Great Lord. It introduces itself as Shaidar Haran, and that when it speaks, Graendal should consider that she hears the voice of the Great Lord. Casually, it snaps the necks of her two Compelled servants. Graendal thinks quickly and then smoothly kneels to the Fade, asking what she should do. To her shock, it laughs, though Myrddraal do not; it compliments her bravery, but warns her not to let it go too far. As she listens to its instructions, she decides not to mention the letter she’d sent to Ituralde.

Moridin, whoever he was, might be Nae’blis today, but there was always tomorrow.

Cadsuane rides in a coach with Daigian and Kumira through Cairhien as an icy rain falls on the city; she watches as Aiel stare in amazement and Cairhienin laugh for joy at the sight. Daigian is arguing very diffidently with Kumira about the weather, contending that logically, if the unending heat was the Dark One’s work, then the change in that pattern must be due to some other agency than the Shadow. Kumira would prefer proof, and tells Daigian to put her mind to what they can do about the sisters with the Aiel. Cadsuane snorts, and opines that they deserve whatever happens to them; if it were up to her, she might have given them to the Aiel anyway, to atone for the “dog’s dinner” they made of matters. As they arrive at the Palace, she warns Kumira and Daigian to be careful in the task she’s set them. They are met in the Palace courtyard by Corgaide, the head servant, whom Cadsuane asks for a room where she can work on her embroidery. Then Cadsuane turns to Merana, Faeldrin, and Bera, who are waiting there watching her, and remarks that she’s surprised to see them strolling “at their ease”; Merana flushes, but Bera replies calmly that they were given a freeday because of the rain.

“I cannot understand why you keep coming back, Cadsuane. Clearly, you want something from us, but unless you tell us what it is, we cannot help you. We know what you did for the Lord Dragon”—she stumbled a little over the title; they still were not quite sure what to call the boy—“but it’s obvious you came to Cairhien because of him, and until you tell us why and what you intend, you must understand that you’ll find no aid from us.”

Faeldrin nods, and Merana adds that if they decide they must oppose her, they will. Cadsuane is inwardly contemptuous of this challenge, but only answers that she didn’t come to see them, though Daigian and Kumira might like to visit. She leaves the latter two to be hustled off, and smiles to herself; Daigian and Kumira would be accorded little respect owing to their low standing, and no one would ever suspect they were there to see what room for maneuvering there might be in the others’ oaths to the boy. She notes as she heads through the Palace that some of the Aiel stare at her as coldly as ever, but others give her nods or even a smile. She thinks that the story that she had been responsible for saving their Car’a’carn had accorded her more respect from the Aiel than any other sister.

She wondered how they would feel if they knew that had she had the boy in front of her right then, she would have been hard-pressed to stop herself from blistering his hide for him! Barely more than a week since he nearly got himself killed, and not only had he managed to elude her completely, he had made her task even more difficult, if half what she heard was true. A pity he had not been raised in Far Madding. But then, that might have led to its own catastrophe.

Corgaide sets her up in a room, and Cadsuane asks for Alanna Mosvani to be sent to her. Then she sets up her sewing basket, which contains a number of things that have nothing whatsoever to do with sewing, and begins working on her latest piece.

The major image on her piece of embroidery was finished, a man’s hand clutching the ancient symbol of the Aes Sedai. Cracks ran across the black-and-white disc, and there was no telling whether the hand was trying to hold it together or crush it. She knew what she intended, but time would tell what was truth.

Alanna enters, and demands to know why Cadsuane keeps badgering her; she cannot tell any more than she has. She starts to say that Rand belongs to her, but cuts herself off; Cadsuane tells her she’s kept Alanna’s crime to herself, but Alanna should not think that Caduane won’t “core her like a cabbage” if necessary. Alanna embraces saidar, but Cadsuane does not deign to rise to the challenge; she notes that one of her hair ornaments, intertwined crescents, is “cool against her temple”. After a moment, Alanna lets the Power go, and sullenly repeats that she doesn’t know any more than she’s already said: Rand was injured, then not, except for the unHealable wounds, and has been leaping all over the south via Traveling, and is full of “rage, and pain, and suspicion”. Cadsuane tells Alanna in no uncertain terms that Alanna will tell her if anything changes; defiantly, Alanna tells her Cadsuane would have done the same in her place.

Cadsuane scowled over the cup at her. She might have. There was no difference between what Alanna had done and a man forcing himself on a woman, but, the Light help her, she might have, had she believed it would help her reach her goal. Now, she no longer considered even making Alanna pass the bond to her. Alanna had proved how useless that was in controlling him.

Alanna finally agrees sulkily to keep Cadsuane informed, and Cadsuane resists the temptation to slap her. Then they are interrupted by none other than Sorilea, who asks if Cadsuane is done with Alanna; at Cadsuane’s confirmation, Sorilea kicks Alanna out, which she obeys with a flounce. Kiruna appears, carrying a tea tray, and starts to ask Sorilea (respectfully) why Alanna was running when she sees Cadsuane and flushes deep red; Sorilea tells her to put the tray down and go, which Kiruna does silently.

As she turned to go, Sorilea caught her chin in sinewy fingers. “You have begun to make a true effort, girl,” the Wise One told her firmly. “If you continue, you will do very well. Very well. Now, go. Chaelin is not as patient as I.”

Sorilea waved toward the corridor, but Kiruna stood staring at her for a long moment, a strange expression on her face. If Cadsuane had had to make a wager, she would have called Kiruna pleased at the praise and surprised at being pleased. The white-haired woman opened her mouth, and Kiruna gave herself a shake and hurried from the room. A remarkable show.

Cadsuane asks if Sorilea thinks Kiruna will really learn their ways of weaving saidar; she is skeptical herself, because it’s well known that once a sister learns one way of doing a weave it is almost impossible to make a different way work as well. Sorilea’s answer reveals she knows just as much of the difficulties involved as Cadsuane does, which Cadsuane takes as a reminder to herself that the Aiel are far from being ignorant savages. Sorilea then asks sharply how they are to properly punish Alanna Mosvani if doing so would harm the Car’a’carn; Cadsuane hides her surprise that Sorilea knows about the bond, and returns one revelation for another, telling her that at the distance the two currently are from each other, Rand will not be able to tell much more than that she is alive, though of course he will die if she does. Sorilea nods, and then says that most men will take an offer if it seems attractive, but the Wise Ones learned too late that this is not the case with Rand al’Thor; now he suspects anything offered freely, and if Sorilea wanted him to take something, she would pretend that she did not want him to have it. Cadsuane is excited by this undeniable evidence that Sorilea is feeling her out, and decides to take a risk.

“Do you believe a man must be hard?” she asked. She was taking a chance. “Or strong?” By her tone, she left no doubt she saw a difference.

Again Sorilea touched the tray; the smallest of smiles might have quirked her lips for an instant. Or not. “Most men see the two as one and the same, Cadsuane Melaidhrin. Strong endures; hard shatters.”

Cadsuane drew breath. A chance she would have scoured anyone else for taking. But she was not anyone else, and sometimes chances had to be taken. “The boy confuses them,” she said. “He needs to be strong, and makes himself harder. Too hard, already, and he will not stop until he is stopped. He has forgotten how to laugh except in bitterness; there are no tears left in him. Unless he finds laughter and tears again, the world faces disaster. He must learn that even the Dragon Reborn is flesh. If he goes to Tarmon Gai’don as he is, even his victory may be as dark as his defeat.”

Sorilea studies her a while, then answers that while the Dragon Reborn and the Last Battle are not in the Aiel’s prophecies, she thinks that Rand al’Thor sees them as nothing more than a spear to be used, and broken if necessary; perhaps she and Cadsuane aim at similar targets. Cadsuane is cautiously agreeable, and suddenly Sorilea shows her how to Travel, though she is too weak in the Power to make the flows actually work. Cadsuane’s jaw drops, and she answers that she has nothing comparable to return for such a gift; Sorilea smiles, knowing Cadsuane was now in her debt, and offers Cadsuane a cup filled with plain water.

“I offer you water oath,” she said solemnly, picking up one of the cups. “By this, we are bound as one, to teach Rand al’Thor laughter and tears.” She sipped, and Cadsuane imitated her.

“We are bound as one.” And if their targets turned out not to be the same at all? She did not underestimate Sorilea as ally or opponent, but Cadsuane knew which target had to be struck, at any cost.

Enter: Cyndane.


Seriously. In my mind, this chapter is most memorable not for what actually happened in it, but for the near orgiastic frenzy of Looney Theory spewage it engendered among the fans. Chumming the waters doesn’t even nearly cover it, you guys; it was like that scene in Jaws. All of them.

Of course, my perception of the crazy may be a little outsized, as by the time TPOD was published I had finally entered the fandom, and this therefore was the first time I was witnessing the aftermath of a newly released WOT book live, so to speak. There’s a bit of a difference between watching a concert on tape, and actually being in the mosh pit, let’s just say.

The two main outbreaks of wild theorizing, naturally, centered on two points: who Cyndane actually was, and how that information (and the other tidbits on Graendal’s doings in the chapter) affected the case for who murdered Asmodean. Of the two, Cyndane’s identity was by far the least contentious. I’d say pretty much 98% of the fandom instantly concluded that Cyndane was none other than our favorite lovelorn psycho back from the dead (or whatever): Lanfear.

In fact, as I recall it the debate was not so much over who she might be, but whether she could possibly be anyone other than Lanfear. And aside from a few nutbars claiming she was Semirhage, or Mesaana, or (later on) Alivia, or even Moiraine (no, really), just about everyone was sure the answer was No.

This has been concluded beyond doubt by now, of course, but as I recall most people were convinced by her very first appearance here. We probably shouldn’t be too het up about that, though, since I’m fairly certain Jordan intended this to be a total gimme from the get-go; even aside from the personality match, the real-world allusions (Cyndane = Cynthia = Artemis = moon goddess = Selene = Lanfear) were more than enough of a clue on their own.

No, the main contention was over whether this chapter bolstered (and, in some people’s view, confirmed) that Graendal Dunnit re: Asmodean.

I’ll be honest, I ain’t getting into this. I have already said all I’m going to say on the topic of Asmodean, sorry. But you guys, of course, are more than welcome to go to town in the comments regarding it.

Instead I will move on to Cadsuane, and the way she continues to manage to completely make me want to slap her even as I admire her technique—and, to a degree, sympathize with her views, which only makes it worse. The conversation with Alanna, for instance, was pure skeevery re: the bonding thing, even as I sympathized with Cads wanting to smack Alanna around. But then, my reasons for wanting to punch Alanna are a bit different than Cadsuane’s for that very reason. Sort of. Argh.

The Far Madding comment Cadsuane makes here about Rand is either the first time we learn where she is originally from, or a reminder of it in the wake of Elyas’s passing comment in the previous chapter about the state of gender relations in Far Madding. Which is to say, seemingly as bad as some of the least appealing examples of patriarchy in the real world, except the other way around.

I’m not sure if this is intended to act as an excuse for Cadsuane’s treatment of Rand, or an invitation to marvel that she gives him even as much consideration as she does, with an upbringing that (I surmise) regards men as little more than ciphers. Either way it leaves a bad taste in my mouth, though I give Jordan credit for the gender-flipped point. The sad truth of it is, if we switched everyone’s genders in WOT, Cadsuane’s tendency to dismiss and/or belittle Rand would not be less infuriating to most readers, but in my opinion it would not strike the majority of readers as being nearly as incongruent.

I’m also sure that this statement will not excite controversy in the comments at all. Heh.

I also got reminded by Sorilea’s conversation with Cadsuane re: Alanna how very shocked I am that Alanna isn’t dead yet. In fact I’m still surprised Alanna’s death wasn’t part of the avalanche of crap that almost sent Rand over the edge in TGS, because I totally had the Warder bond snapping being the thing that almost screws our Hero.

Of course, it’s early yet. Yay?

As for the alliance between Cadsuane and Sorilea, I remember when I first read that a shiver went down my spine even as I agreed with Cadsuane’s assessment of Rand. Those two? Working together? RUN AWAY, YOU GUYS. Yeeeeek.

And has Cadsuane accomplished her goal, as stated here and (we think) prophesied by Min? Teaching Rand laughter and tears, and to be strong instead of hard?

I… dunno. I mean, it certainly seems like Rand learned laughter and tears again by the end of TGS, but he was kind of alone on a mountaintop when he learned it, so I don’t know how much Cadsuane could honestly be said to have had to do with the whole thing. I suppose in a roundabout way you could say she was the root cause, for digging up Tam and sending him to talk to Rand, which more or less triggered the whole near-meltdown, but… well. It seems a bit, I dunno. Roundabout.

*shrug* I will withhold judgment on this. The process, in any case, is far from finished, and I get the feeling ToM will do a fair bit to clarify this whole thing anyway. No point in jumping the gun.

And with that lack of concludedness, we out! Have a nice mid-May, and I’ll see youse mugs Friday!

jack middleton
3. jack middleton
Thanks for the recap, leigh
I wonder who taught Sorilea to travel. I can't remember anyone in her entourage or captives who were able. It always made me wonder if she had a mentor of the dark persuasion. More chaos. Perhaps I missed something.
Tess Laird
4. thewindrose
Egwene is teaching the Wise Ones weaves for their tutelage in Dreaming and to make up for her toh to those she lied to.

And more later...

Tess Laird
5. thewindrose
Doh! Double post!

And more later...

TW Grace
6. TWGrace
I get the feeling ToM will do a fair bit to clarify this whole thing anyway.

Personally I am not holding my breath on ToM involving anything with Rand...I think he will barely be in it, other than maybe a couple of "pre-epiphany" flashback moments with Perrin and/or Mat...

I could be wrong, it wouldnt be the first time.
jack middleton
7. Megaduck
I have never understood what people see in Cadsuane. Either in Randland or out of it.

I will admit, she is slightly more competent then the average AS, but only slightly, and her plans seem totally random to me.

I don't understand why people keep her around or even listen to her.
jack middleton
8. Seamus1602
Re: the 2 sides of Cadsuane

Her methods always bug me, but it does seem
like her plan worked in the end. Assuming, of course, that the end of tGS equals 'laughter and tears' and assuming that Cads' plan was to make Rand more crazy in an effort to push him to the brink and force him to either destroy the world
or do what she wants. If that wasn't her plan, boy, did she get lucky.
Ron Garrison
9. Man-0-Manetheran
“He needs to be strong, and makes himself harder. Too hard, already, and he will not stop until he is stopped. He has forgotten how to laugh except in bitterness; there are no tears left in him. Unless he finds laughter and tears again, the world faces disaster. He must learn that even the Dragon Reborn is flesh. If he goes to Tarmon Gai’don as he is, even his victory may be as dark as his defeat.”
There you have it, TGS in a nutshell.

"has Cadsuane accomplished her goal, as stated here and (we think) prophesied by Min?"
It goes without repeating that many of you here absolutely, positively, unequivocably hate Cadsuane's methods - and some just hate her. I got that, but hear me out.

The critical moment in Rand's 'transformation' to laughter and tears is the scene between him and Tam. It's gut-wrenching, and it rips him apart. Yes, he nearly goes crazy and destroys the world. Bad. Very bad. Now it was Cadsuane's idea to bring Tam to Rand. She prepared him a script, but we don't know what that script was because Tam abandoned it almost immediately. Then he said the dreaded C Word which was the fuse that caused Rand's explosion.

So whether Cadsuane's methods were right or wrong, if she had not brought Tam to Rand, would he have ended up on the top of Dragonmount? Near disaster by a hair, but in the end he laughs and cries. Now he might backslide some in the upcoming books, but I doubt it. As the climax of TGS, I think it is a milestone we have passed. So, I think "yes" ...with a big chunk of luck.
Kerwin Miller
10. tamyrlink
is it ever explicitly stated that teaching Rand laughter and tears is what min prophesised? it seems like everyone has made that assumption based on mins vision and cadsuanes thoughts and the fact that its clearly what is best for rand. but really cadsuane didnt teach him anything. i dont consider the "roundabout way" of fetching tam to count at all.

mins visions seem to be more direct than that usually.
Jeff Weston
11. JWezy
IIRC, Cadsuane is to teach Rand and the Asha'man something. If the lesson was at the end of TGS, I am hard pressed to see what the Asha'man got out of it. My bet is that there is more to come - what Cadsuane has to teach is not something they will like, but just as much it is not something she intends.

And, on a side note, is the plural "Asha'men"?
Hugh Arai
12. HArai
If that was her plan, then she wins the prize for least justified success ever.
Kate Collura
13. dreamwalker
I was going to add what JWezy @ 11 pointed out. Unfortunately, Cadsuane cannot be done "teaching" since she is also supposed to teach the Asha'man. So at best she has partially completed her plan.

Personally, I think we may never know whether her plan with Tam went as she intended or not. Did she mean for him to stick to the script or know he would stray from it? Did she know Rand would flip out and push him to that intentionally or take a huge risk without knowing it? Basically, is she brilliant or blind stupid? I'm honestly not sure how much credit to give her. Argh!
Andrew Belmont
15. rosetintdworld
Haha, Leigh. Thanks for plowing through the Shaido. I just noticed this is two books in a row now that Jordan has paired a Sevanna chapter with a Cadsuane one--so your grumping is helpful for recognizing structural patterns at least! Not to mention, yes, you can find something insightful to say about anything. :)

I wasn't a commenter prior to LOC, but I have re-read all of Leigh's posts, and I know how she feels about certain psychotic characters.

Am I alone among commenters here in loving Lanfear as far as villains go? I found it refreshing to read about a "simple" bat-shit crazy powerhouse antagonist (especially in a work filled with so many delusional despots who really aren't as powerful as they think they are, or cowardly but brilliant plotters who go down in two seconds once our heroes figure out where they actually are.) I was glad to get her back, although a little sad that she was "watered-down," both Power-wise and in the way she went from being the most well-developed Forsaken with the most screentime to operating entirely offscreen. I hope we see more of her in TOM.
Kate Collura
16. dreamwalker
rosetintdworld @ 15

I think it was a little disappointing to see the return of Lanfear in the form of Cyndane. I think she was interesting as a villain, as you point out, in her prior incarnation because she went her own way. She seemed not totally predictable. But Cyndane does seem "watered down" and in a large part because she's completely under Moridin's thumb now. She can't be a renegade.

When I go through and and try to remember which Forsaken are left and could possibly be responsible for something I tend to forget Cyndane and Moghedian as their own people and think of them as extensions of Moridin, since they can't do anything he doesn't want them to.

When TG is finally in full force, I wonder if they can be somehow "released" from their mindtraps? Do we have any knowledge of whether this is possible? Or at least I would think they should be given free reign to do what they want. It seems like they could be more useful to the Dark if they can act independently.
Raul Gallegos
17. Master_Asmodean
Thank you Leigh for another great re-read post and commentary. I also don't recall how it was Sorilea learned the weaves to travel. I'm still technically behind on the re-read posts, still on LoC, but try to catch up on these in real time. If there is a book or chapter where this is mentioned on her learning to travel, I would like that pointed out to me. RE Cadsuane, she reminds me of an aunt I once had. You never knew what she was planning or how it would turn out. She would get on someone's case for not throwing a birthday party, yet would sometimes lead you to thinking that you were a spoiled brat if you had one thrown for you. I donno, but when you are 8 and you are confused by that, it's hard to forget almost 20 years later. I like her over all, but can't figure out exactly why today. RE Asmodean, I didn't pick up on anything about him with Graendal's scene here. Maybe I'm just not connecting the dots, shrug. RE Galina, I don't like her, but I do feel sorry for her. No more to say on that one, but no matter who you are, if Therava doesn't give you nightmares, then be very glad of it. I wonder how a confrontation between Therava and Semirhage would go.
Tess Laird
18. thewindrose
Graendal - Talk about a complicated plan!
She seals the letter with the sigil of Alsalam, King of Arad Doman, and gives it to a slightly-Compelled courier named Nazran, who recites the story he is to give Rodel Ituralde (that a Lady Tuva brought it from Alsalam before dying of wounds from a Gray Man attack).

With all the fishiness going on, I wonder if Rodel Ituralde was leery of it?

Cyndane - the crazy theories - they still do be happening:) I like the Cyndane is Mieren one myself, as I have commented of in the past.

When I get home I will look for the part about Therava being in Galina's nightmares - it made me think that Therava might be an 'unknown' dream-walker - unknown to Amys and crew.

Sharon E.
19. Sulin
WILL SHE PREVAIL against the dastardly doings of the Deadly Doldrums in the tin-foil-hatted Dungeon of Despair? Dunno!
ROTFL! You have such a way with words, Leigh. :)

RE Cadsuane's Master Plan: 1) I don't think she's finished yet, since she hasn't taught the Asha'man anything. 2) I don't really think she anticipated Rand's extreme psychotic reaction to Tam's mention of her. I think she assumed Tam would obediently follow her Plan.

I dunno, though. Like dreamwalker@13 said, I can't decide. Which is more frightening: That she did what she did deliberately, or that she's just incompetent? If she did it knowing that Rand would (very likely) flip out and nearly Hadoken the world....*shudders*

rose@15- I love Lanfear too, she's awesome.
Maiane Bakroeva
20. Isilel
So, why are Shaido and Co. following Sevanna again? It is a ... mystery. And BTW, isn't it very problematic that the Aiel WOs can't impeach/overrule a clan chief, if necessary? They are behind the WT in this.
Will this second Oath Rod appear again and cause some more problems? I vote yes. And BTW, IMHO it's white color means that it works only on female channelers and a male binder would have been black.

Ah, yes, Cyndane and the proof that Graendal is prone to skulking around strongholds of her recently fallen calleagues. Good times. Of course, the question whether Cyndane had been stilled and Healed still remains as contentious as ever.

I remember being disappointed by the "second weave" rule, since it limits possibilities of improvement in channeling very much and all but guarantees that the AS "apprenticeship" with the WOs will be pretty useless re: skill aquisition.

Also, the first time that we see somebody who is too weak to make a weave work being able to form it. IIRC, it was supposed to be impossible in the early books.
The first time too that we see a very weak channeler who is a quick learner in Sorilea.
Raul Gallegos
21. Master_Asmodean
To dreamwalker:13, I think when prophecy is involved, it doesn't matter how it's achieved. So regardless of whether Tam did what Cadsuane wanted or not, the end result is what matters. I don't believe that it's completed though because so far, Rand seems to be the only one who has remembered laughter and tears. This is all just a guess though. I mean, the Asha’man still have not learned this, if this is indeed what they are to learn. So whether this will happen as a result of Rand or in a different way, maybe ToM will tell. My opinion is that only half of this viewing has been completed.
jack middleton
22. chaplainchris
I couldn't find the cookies at the last post. Did you guys move 'em here, or are they already eaten!?!?
Kate Collura
23. dreamwalker
Master Asmodean @ 21

I agree, I don't think it necessarily matters for prophecy's sake whether Cadsuane's plan worked as intended, as long as Rand and the Asha'man learn laughter and tears - or whatever she is supposed to teach them. I guess it is not for certain that is what Min's viewing means, although I think it is.

My uncertainty is more so a reflection of Cadsuane's character. As in, does she deserve respect for pulling off a risky and complex plan? Or is she completely foolish as well as abrasive and infuriating? I guess I would like to believe she knew that Rand would explode and that it was a risk that needed to be taken, but I have a hard time being certain of that from the text.

Either way, I also believe the viewing is only half completed.
Hilde Sørensen
24. edlihs
From The Gathering Storm Book Tour, Mysterious Galaxy, San Diego 15 November 2009 - Freelancer reporting

Q. Has Cadsuane met Min's vision regarding the lesson she must teach Rand and the Asha'man, which they won't like one bit?
A. Part of it.
Marcus W
25. toryx
Bah, more Cadsuane discussion. I'm more curious as to whether or not Rand has learned to be strong rather than hard. That's not necessarily inclusive with learning to laugh and cry again.

I can't help but get a little delight out of how much Galina is suffering. That makes the Sevanna chapters a little more bearable for me.

Something I'm a little curious about: Is Cyndane forbidden from telling anyone who she is? It seems a little weird for her (and others for that matter) to go stalking around acting like they should be taken seriously without actually telling anyone why they should be taken seriously.
Jacy Clark
26. Amalisa
Re Sevanna and the less-than-Wise Ones and Galina... Ever since Desaine was the victim of murder by committee , I had been waiting for the wheels to come off that train. It always does in the crime dramas. The perps turn on each other like sharks in a feeding frenzy. Alas, not yet. And, apparently, not ever. Unless it happens on the Seanchan's watch. I wonder how many of Sevanna's partners in crime were captured. We know that Therava, Belinde and Modarra escaped but is it safe to assume the others are now collared or da'covale? It's not important, really, I'm just curious. As for Galina and Therava - I had absolutely no sympathy for Galina while she was trussed up and roasting. None. But I felt a twinge of something mildly like sympathy when Therava grabbed her by the hair on her head and bent her head back. That woman is truly terrifying! (Oh, and I was so happy to see the snow!)

Leigh, your insight into the degeneration of the Shaido is a classic example of why I enjoy reading your blog. I will admit that I'm one who gets swept up in just the story, and I don't always and/or readily grasp the intellectual heavy-lifting that went into creating the Wheel of Time world. I am so appreciative of you (and the others here) who do. I get it when y'all point it out - usually with a slap to the forehead and a big grin and a "damn, that's cool!" - but otherwise I just get lost in the scenery. Thank you for that!

The meeting between Graendal, Moghedien and Cyndane...
Graendal doesn’t know what’s going on, but seats herself in a show of casualness and asks who this Death person is they keep talking about.

I'm sorry, but... Moridin, Death, Muerte, Death. (I really am sorry. Really.)

Way back when we were discussing whether or not Graendal had survived the nuking of Natrin's Barrow, I expressed my feeling that Graendal merited a "better" (???) death, that she was too important to be offed where we were unable to appreciate her realization that she had just received her comeuppence. Or words to that effect. This scene, with her taking on Moggy and Cyndane/Lanfear in an OP catfight and beating them both to the point that she was able to put them both under Compulsion, is one of the reasons I felt (and still feel) that way.

Cadsuane in the Sun Palace... I love minutae, and this chapter is full of it. Cats and Aes Sedai, dogs thinking that Aes Sedai are Very Big Cats... the Aiel so distracted by the rain that his pocket is picked... the intellectual but friendly byplay between Daigian and Kumira... the way Cads "carefully" situated the sewing box with its mirrored cover on the table so that she could see the door and using that to unsettle Alanna. And what would have happened if Alanna had been "truly foolish" enough to do more than just embrace saidar.

Cadsuane and Sorilea... I have never understood why Sorilea gets a pass from virtually everyone while Cadsuane is disliked by so many. They are remarkably similar. Neither suffers fools gladly. Both take it as a given that their advice will be heeded, and woe to any who would fail to do so. Both are exceptionally stubborn and strong-willed. Both use compliments sparingly but sincerely. Both would spank Rand in a heartbeat if it would get the job done. Is it because Sorilea is Aiel and therefore "noble", while Cadsuane is Aes Sedai and, well, not? Is there anything that one has done that the other wouldn't? Seriously?

I loved this meeting between them. Yes, I expected the earth to tremble, at the very least. At this point, I was still tossing around the possibility that Cads was BA, and I wondered what would happen if/when she was outed. Would Sorilea be the one to kill her? I could see that battle, and it would be awesome! (I'm settled in my mind re Cads but I'll admit that some tiny little voice is saying "watch out" where Sorilea is concerned. So I may still get to see that battle...)

@chaplainchris... *mumbles between clinched teeth and surreptiously brushes crumbs from blouse* Cookies? What cookies?
Andrew Belmont
27. rosetintdworld
Toryx, I've always wondered that about Cyndane too. Demandred, Graendal and others know exactly who the Gars and Moridin are, and don't seem to be particularly proud of having ferretted out a secret. Their identities were always public. (See the relevant Tea Parties in WH, KOD, TGS.)

Cyndane, on the other hand, keeps Demandred, Graendal, and Aran'gar, at least, in the dark. It could be her pride preventing her from admitting that the almighty Lanfear has fallen so low, or maybe it is Moridin's edict, for some reason we don't know about yet.
Jon Baker
28. Kendu
Re: Cadsuane's methods, and whether or not she's brilliant or incompetently lucky, I think it's important to note how far Rand was headed for utter disaster. The Dark One is coming, there's no stopping him, and Rand is the only one who can stop him from ending Time and the world utterly.

And according to Cadsuane, Sorilea, and anybody with sense, his victory sans "laughter and tears" at Tarmon Gai'don would likely be worse than a defeat. What could that mean? Well, maybe instead of what Moridin wants to happen, we'd get what the rest of the Forsaken want, only with an Evil Rand as God of the Earth.

Try and find another way to help Rand learn laughter and tears by around the middle of TGS. Go ahead, try. Anything that might work also becomes very risky. So Cadsuane had the guts to take a huge risk: Rand destroying the world (without unmaking anything) seems a lot better than a Dark Defeat or an Evil Victory. She had to push him to the edge and have faith that the boy Moiraine found was still in there somewhere (and ironically, I think it was Min who convinced her of that).

She did something incredible, and as for the Asha'man, well if I were Rand and had just come to the realization that an entire force of men who could channel that I was in charge of had been led down a path of horrible philosophical darkness, I would want to step in and change the way things were run. Perhaps I'd have to remove the man in charge, and if such a man were working for the Forsaken, perhaps he'd put up a fight. Perhaps Logain would be a suitable replacement, and would rise to glory above the Dragon Reborn in that regard? A Black Tower might be considered a "Tower of Midnight." Just a thought.
Sharon E.
29. Sulin
Leigh, your insight into the degeneration of the Shaido is a classic example of why I enjoy reading your blog. I will admit that I'm one who gets swept up in just the story, and I don't always and/or readily grasp the intellectual heavy-lifting that went into creating the Wheel of Time world. I am so appreciative of you (and the others here) who do. I get it when y'all point it out - usually with a slap to the forehead and a big grin and a "damn, that's cool!" - but otherwise I just get lost in the scenery. Thank you for that!

Very well said, and ditto!

Kendu@28- Very well written. You've given me something to ponder. *gets out thinking cap*

Edit for: Minutae FTW!
Steven Pattingale
30. Pattingale
*Brings more cookies* Chewy chocolate chip ones.
Birgit F
31. birgit
With all the fishiness going on, I wonder if Rodel Ituralde was leery of it?

This last order was different, though. For one thing, a Gray Man had killed Lady Tuva trying to stop it from reaching him. Why the Shadow might fear this order more than any other was a mystery, yet it was all the more reason to move swiftly. Before Alsalam reached him with another. This order opened many possibilites, and he had considered every last one he could see.

CoT prologue
Ron Garrison
32. Man-0-Manetheran
Master_Asmodean@21: "So whether this will happen as a result of Rand or in a different way, maybe ToM will tell." I agree. I didn't address the asha'man, but you said it well.

edlihs@24: Gold Star! Thanks for finding that quote. Guess we have our answer.

Amalisa@26: Ah yes, details! I love those little touches too.

Kendu@28: Cadsuane's plan did not go as planned. We don't know what was in her script, but I think it's unlikely that the way the moment played out was completely orchestrated. Her most important part of the mix was bringing Tam to Rand. I don't doubt that she intended to push him to the breaking point. Sometimes harsh means are necessary, though I don't believe that it went exactly as she planned. But it worked. Praise the Light!

And the Black Tower as one of the Towers of Midnight: very plausable. We are due for something to happen on that front.
Thomas Keith
33. insectoid
Late to the party again (but only because I got to sleep in for the first time in quite a while). Great post Leigh!

Ch. 11:
Blah blah Shaido, blah blah Galina, blah blah blee blah bloo blah bleh.
I couldn't have said it better. Meh!

Ch. 12: I actually enjoyed this chapter a leetle bit more.
Cyndane: ::chuckles:: Three guesses (and the first two don't count) as to who this recycled FS is... I was convinced the first time I read the chapter. ;)

Shaidar Haran: ::shudders::

Cadsuane and Sorilea: Ah, the meeting of the minds. Well, as of TGS Rand has the laughter thing down (or so we hope), but we can only speculate on the tears thing until the next book, I suppose.

M-0-M @9:
“He needs to be strong, and makes himself harder. Too hard, already, and he will not stop until he is stopped. He has forgotten how to laugh except in bitterness; there are no tears left in him. Unless he finds laughter and tears again, the world faces disaster. He must learn that even the Dragon Reborn is flesh. If he goes to Tarmon Gai’don as he is, even his victory may be as dark as his defeat.”

There you have it, TGS in a nutshell.
Well said!

::grabs a couple of cookies and goes off in search of milk::

34. Ouroboros
The thing that still surprises me is how quickly the Shaido fall apart. I mean, we all know that they are nasty smelling creatures from TSR but they at least have the excuse of having been duped by Sevanna and Couladin. It's often said that they believed Couladin really was the Big Chief, even after he was killed, which is really odd, but I suppose the notion that they backed the wrong horse has finally had time to fester. The rot must have really set in by now if they are willing to put up with all of Sevanna's nonsense. Oh well. It just goes to show that you should never trust anyone whose name makes you think of a desert.

I think Elaida would be another contender for the wilfully blind crown.

I don't really pay that much attention to the grinding down of Galina. It's pretty well established that she's going to be emotional sausage meat by the end of KoD; I only wish it had taken one book to get there in stead of four. As for her treatment, well, that just follows the general decay of the Shaido.

It's interesting that this is probably the closest "authentic" use of the oath rod that we've seen in the whole series; it was originally used to prevent criminals from reoffending. Obviously, they went too far with it, and they weren't serving justice, but at least it wasn't another half-arsed PR exercise carried out by the White Tower.

Oh look, Shaidar Haran is back, and doing some surprisingly physical things for a creature that is supposed to only have a limited ability to interact with the real world. Maybe he came straight from a recharge. Someone really needs to get that guy a spare TP battery.

I must admit that when I first read this I didn't get why Moghedien put the lights out, duhr! SH needed the shadows to ride in on.

So, Cadsuane.

She's embroidering an image of a man holding a seal which he's either holding together or breaking. Which does she intend? All of my money is on the latter and this only goes to show that she knows a lot more than she's letting on to everyone else. I really hope we get to see her telling Rand that this is what he has to do so that we can get the "but that's what Min said" moment.

It's good to see someone putting Alana in her place. As for her admission that she might have bonded Rand herself, Well, there are enough conditionals, not least "the light help her", to indicate that she would have done it reluctantly and probably only as a last resort. She also does not like the way in which Alana says that Rand is hers; "she had the gall to say that!" In short, if she did do it, she would have been very aware of how obscene the crime was. Also don't forget that by this point she has had several run-ins with Mister Obey Me and is probably beginning to think that he is not going to be an easy man to guide. So, it may well be that her initial revulsion to the bonding has softened now that she's had a chance to see what she's dealing with.

It's true that she could have told Alana to release the bond completely, however, Cadsuane clearly has more respect for "bonding etiquette" than Alana does. Also, the bond does provide her with a limited way of knowing what Rand is up to, and given how much rides on him, I can forgive her not wanting to lose that point of contact. Moreover, Rand has shown that the bond can't be used to control him, so she's not condoning any form of compulsion, just a way of keeping tabs on him.

Regarding the Far Madding comment, she appends it with "but that could have led to its own catastrophe." I'm taking this to mean that she believes it would have been even worse if he had been brought up as a submissive man, because everyone would be pushing him around, including Darkfriends.

About Min's prophesy: I never believed that it was as simple as the laughter and tears thing. After all, she's supposed to teach all the Asha'men something. I'm guessing that it has something to do with them realising that they need to work with the women and that trying to control and subdue the Aes Sedai will not work and could end in disaster. It may even be that Cadsuane small army of 300 odd Aes Sedai come into it.

Did Cadsuane succeed? She brought Tam in. No Tam, no psychotic episode, no Dragon Mount, no laughter and tears. It might not have gone exactly according to plan but how many plans in this series have. Also, this was quite literally the last resort. If she hadn't taken this risk then the TG would have been thought by Darf Herder and not Rand Al Therin. We’ve all seen that movie. Nooooooooooooo!

@many incompetent? At what point in the series does Cadsuane do anything which is stupid or not thought through. It might not always work out as planned but then, Egwene gets captured by Elaida, Rand gets stabbed by Fain, Perrin gets half his trolloc hunting party killed, Moiraine drives Rand off by mishandling him, Rand tries to bully and intimidate half his followers without any input from the True Power, Elayne blunders into several traps, Nynaeve refuses to take advice from men, Min thinks that she can defend Rand but only serves as a vulnerability, and so on, and so on, and so on. Moreover, Cadsuane has repeatedly shown how competent she is, and if it hadn't been for her, Rand would be done at least three times by now.

I know that lots of people don't like the way in which Cadsuane puts Rand down but do you really think he didn't deserve some of it. Go back and reread the first time Rand meets her. He is rude, arrogant, threatening, not to mention unobservant. If he didn't realise that Cadsuane was not a run of the mill AS then he certainly deserved the tongue lashing that she gave him in the throne room. Yes, I know that he had been put through a lot by Elaida’s Rand baggers, not to mention plenty of other pig headed AS, but if you go around painting everyone with the same brush then don't be surprised if you get spanked for getting it wrong. I would have thought that his being a man who can channel would have thought him that lesson.

Well, I hope the bunker has some armour, or at least a very big shield.

Ooh look, I spelt Aes Sedai right twice – well three times now.
Marcus W
35. toryx
Amalisa @ 26:

Cadsuane and Sorilea... I have never understood why Sorilea gets a pass from virtually everyone while Cadsuane is disliked by so many. They are remarkably similar.

Good question. I can only answer for myself but the difference to me is that with Cadsuane everyone knows that when push comes to shove she can pin people up against a wall, silence them and/or beat the crap out of them with Air.

Sorilea can't rely on that. She can use a wisp of the power, but from what I understand the most anyone would feel if she tried to hammer on them is a slight breeze. So Sorilea has her position and has earned the respect by virtue of her will rather than her power. Furthermore, Sorilea says what she wants and does what she wants but I don't think she is as bullying with Rand, at least, as she is with those she actually has authority over; Aiel, apprentices and Wise Ones of lesser rank.

It's not that I dislike Cadsuane because she's strong-willed and stubborn. I admire those things in people. I simply don't like the way she treats Rand. I don't think Sorilea treats him that way.
Noneo Yourbusiness
36. Longtimefan
@26 Amalisa

I had a thought on this comment

"...with her taking on Moggy and Cyndane/Lanfear in an OP catfight..."

from the description (and I am going from the re-read not the chapter) it seems to me that this bit

"Wrapping her arms around herself, Moghedien shot the silver-haired little woman a scowl as good as any spoken confirmation. Suddenly Cyndane’s big eyes opened even wider, and she gasped, shuddering.

Moghedien’s glare turned malicious. “You lead for the moment,” she sneered. “Your place in his eyes is not far better than mine.” And then she gave a start and shivered, biting her lip."

Seemed more like the reaction that happens when Mordin strokes the Cour'asova (spelling from memory. sorry)instead of the two lashing out in petty ways with the one power. To me at least.

The wide eyes and shivering was described before when he strokes the mindtrap. I suspect that at this time he is not fully trusting of Moghedien or Cyndane and strokes the mindtrap occasionally to remind them he is always there.

As to why Sorilea gets a pass. I think it may be as simple as the fact she has never struck Rand where Cadsuane has done so twice.

Also, and this just may be my reading of the characters, Sorilea may be indifferent to Rand but Cadsuane comes off as being demeaning in similar context. (thinking on the hairless bottomcheeks comment but not finding a comparable statement from the Aiel as much as a general feeling that the attitude towards nudity would not make them say something unpleasant about someone, instead they would say something positive to put them off balance with the shame of pride, uh rambly now. Stopping)

Totally valid point though. Why would Cadsuane see herself and Sorilea as similar with similar goals but the readers often dislike one and not the other.

Re-reads are totally fun!
Jon Baker
37. Kendu
Man-O-Manetheren@32: There is nothing in the text to suggest that Cadsuane's plan went awry. In fact, seconds after Rand went to Ebou Dar to destroy the Seanchan, Min told an entire room of Aes Sedai (including both Cadsuane and Nynaeve) and nobody moved to stop him. That seems to suggest one of two things: either things were going exactly as planned, or that the plan was to remind Rand of who he was before he knew he was the Dragon Reborn, and then to the Pit of Doom with any plan beyond that (in other words, faith that he would remember he was a good person).
Henry Loose
38. schrodinger
I cannot wait to see the next meeting between Rand and Cadsuane. In my mind it goes a little something like this:

Cadsuane: Phaw! have you decided to stop having temper tantrums boy?
Rand: Why Cadsuane, you're completely right to treat me like a child, after all, I'm only an infinitely old entity and the only one who knows how to save the world.
Cadsuane: Phaw! didn't I teach you respect boy? (tries to smack him with the power)
Rand: I wouldn't try that Cadsuane, because, well, you know Ishamael? He's not dead. In fact, there is some sort of link between us, so he feels what I feel sometimes... and sometimes he gets angry. You won't like him when he's angry.
Cadsuane: Phaw! shut up boy, I know what's best for you. (switches him with the power)
Rand: Now, that killed the goat.
Ishydin: Ishydin just want to be left alone! Ishydin Smash!
Rand: (regaining control of his body, talking to the bloody mess on the floor) I told you.
jack middleton
39. Lsana
@27 rosetintdworld,

Do any of the recycled Forsaken tell anyone who they are? I know that the others clearly seem to know, but I'm not sure that that is because they were explicitly told or if was just because, well, if someone shows up who acts like Bob, talks like Bob, has all of Bob's mannerisms and Bob's exact strength in channeling saidin, it doesn't take too much of a stretch of the imagination to assume that it is Bob.

As for Cyndane, my pet theory is that she's weaker than Lanfear because the resurrection process works differently for saidar and saidin channelers.
j p
40. sps49
Kendu @28-

Asking what could be done for Rand as of TGS to help him does not give Cadsuane a pass; she has had how many books now? to help him instead of "guiding" him.
Hugh Arai
41. HArai
Amalisa@26: Cadsuane and Sorilea have some strong similarities for certain. For my part, I dislike the way Cadsuane thinks in her POVs and the way she treats Rand and others. It's certainly possible if Sorilea had some POVs or more screen time I'd dislike her just as much. As it is, she doesn't and I don't.
Jon Baker
42. Kendu
sps49@40: Oh, I agree entirely with that statement. She's clearly a character who's had a difficult, unpopular arc; if you ask me, she's been placed in the role of the White Tower Personified, in that all attempts to control and browbeat Rand helped to turn him toward disaster, and only by learning how to treat him like a human being could disaster have been averted.
jack middleton
43. chaplainchris
@26 - I see you Amalisa.

*slips veil into place, picks up spear.* I see you...and I see _crumbs_.

*sees shiny object, smells chewy chocolate chip cookiers @ 30 *

yum! Cookie cookie cookie starts with c!
James Jones
44. jamesedjones
37 Kendu
In fact, seconds after Rand went to Ebou Dar to destroy the Seanchan, Min told an entire room of Aes Sedai (including both Cadsuane and Nynaeve) and nobody moved to stop him.
Because he Traveled to a city full of power using weapons, who would not hesitate to collect another leashed one. Plan or not, none of them were about to chase him there.
Raul Gallegos
45. Master_Asmodean
Ouroboros @34: Many times I have to copy/paste WoT names in when I write because my only reading of the books has been via audio listening, the spelling is not as obvious. Pronouncing and spelling them are quite different, so I confess to cheating. The trouble is that if I could get the WoT books in Braille, that would be totally rockin', but would take up too much room. I have the electronic versions in Braille, but it's not quite the same all the time. However all that being said, a few of my fav names I got down right without thinking, I.E. Asmodean. :D
Lucas Vollmer
46. aspeo
I have always wondered how Sevannah has kept her power among the wise ones since she can't channel. She pretty much pushes and pulls them into doing whatever she wants, and for some reason they do it! I wonder if she continually blackmailed or coerced her way up the ranks because she seems very young to have so much power over the other WO, especially the ones who channel. I know that saidar strength is not necessarily the only thing that matters to them, but you would think that eventually they would just tie her up in air and get on with their own planning for how to have their people survive.

Also I was under the impression that the power deflecting Ter'Angreal that Mat and Cadsuane have only went cold when channeling was occuring. Not just when someone embraced the source. Could this mean that Alanna actually tried something on Cadsuane, but found out it wouldn't work? Or, am I simply seeing too much into it?
Roger Powell
47. forkroot
Did Cadsuane succeed? She brought Tam in. No Tam, no psychotic episode, no Dragon Mount, no laughter and tears. It might not have gone exactly according to plan but how many plans in this series have.
Here's the philosophical question: Do you get full credit for the results even if your initial plan backfires but in the resulting chaos things go your way?

I think Cadsuane got as lucky as Coca-Cola did with "New Coke". They needed to change the formula to get rid of the cane sugar so they tried to sell the world on "New Coke". It was a disaster, but then someone was clever enough enough to come up with "Classic Coke" (which wasn't - it has no cane sugar) and all the clueless consumers jumped on that thinking that they'd got "their Coke" back.

So Coke accomplished their goal, they were able to change the formula without losing their customer base. I always thought that they planned the whole sequence, but that theory has been pretty well debunked (at snopes.com). They were basically incompetent and then lucky.

I claim Cadsuane had a similar result when she brought in Tam and "coached" him. She came "this close" to screwing up (and getting the world destroyed). What saved her was the basic goodness and decency at the base of LTT's character that was nurtured by Tam when he raised Rand. That "little voice" made the difference, not Cadsuane's clumsy manipulations.
jack middleton
48. Looking Glass
Shaido Decimation: The Shaido are actually decimated, and probably way more than that. Even aside from all the loss of self-identity stuff. They invaded the wetlands with their Car’a’Carn at their head, expecting easy victories, rich spoils, and literal manifest destiny. Then their first major battle, outside Cairhein, saw them totally routed and their supposed messiah killed along with huge numbers of their comrades. Their second major battle was supposed to be a quick, overwhelming ambush of a couple dozen Aes Sedai; instead they got a meat grinder probably deadlier than the first. Then their supposed fool-proof escape plan scattered the survivors across a largely unfamiliar continent with no way of locating or contacting one another. Then they found out about the Seanchan. It has not been a good year for the Shaido.

Then pile up the loss of traditions and self-identity and all that on top of it. Plus, they’ve all got to at least suspect by now that Rand’s the real deal, and by extension all the demoralizing cultural-identity-shaking stuff he said is true.

Of course, soon things will get better for them- they’ll find a nice town to camp out in, pick up plenty of loot and prisoners from a country totally unable to defend itself, and even locate some of their lost clansmen. Yep, things are looking up for the Shaido. : )

toryx@25: Having one’s new name imposed by a decidedly displeased avatar of the Dark One is probably good incentive to stick to it as much as possible even if he didn’t make it an explicit command. And Lanfear definitely did more to annoy the Shadow than Balthamel or Aginor. Let’s face it, if the Dark One’s named you Last Chance, you probably don’t want to go tempting fate any more than necessary.
Raul Gallegos
49. Master_Asmodean
aspeo @ 46: According to http://steelypips.org/wotfaq/2_nondark/2.3_one-power/2.3.13_cads-hair-thing.html I don't believe it was ever determined if this meant that the power was held or if a flow was directed at her.
jack middleton
50. Jonathan Levy
toryx & Amalisa & longtimefan:

Having slapped Rand twice, and relying on her strength in the Power are good enough reasons to despise Cadsuane. Nonetheless, I'd like to add one more: She is consistently rude to Rand, and at the same time lectures him about manners. Her blatant hypocrisy is infuriating. "I didn't like the way you spoke to me, little boy! You were rude, little boy! Now you must apologize, little boy, or I will punish you! Make a strong effort or you might not convince me!"

My 6-year-old niece can be pretty nasty towards her 4-year-old sister, but on the Cadusane Irritant Scale she hardly ranks a 3 out of 10.

Sorilea, for all her faults, doesn't pull that kind of crap.
jack middleton
51. Jelsel
@46 Aspeo;

please correct me if i'm wrong, but i thought only Matt has the power-deflecting ter'angreal while Cadsy's only warns if there is OP afoot.....
53. Freelancer
Hi Leigh. Well, only a forced peep of feminism this trip? Feeling alright? ::duck::

Since you asked, from one of my questions to Brandon last November, whether Cadsuane had completed any of Min's viewing that she would teach Rand and the Asha'man a lesson they would not like learning, the answer was;
Part of it.
In the followup of whether it was directly related to the laughter and tears as discussed by Cadsuane and Sorilea, I got a RAFO.

And now I see that as I've been reading and typing, edlihs@24 has the Q & A of that one.

So, at least in this one area, we're given a textual reason for the lack of direct discussion. I would be in good company wondering why Cadsuane doesn't simply explain her impression to Rand, that he is making himself hard instead of strong, and that it will lead to disaster if he doesn't retain his humanity. But here we have Sorilea saying that it is necessary to play Rand with some reverse psycho-babble to steer him as desired. Ok, that doesn't exactly bridge the gap, but it offers an emollient to my level of disturbance with the non-advice method of advising going on.


There is no scenario of results in the WoT universe which would end with Rand as a god, or as a replacement for the dark one, or anything remotely along those lines. Rand is a created human, gifted with abilities, burdened with a destiny. That still leaves an infinite gulf between who/what he is and a deity, whether of Light or shadow. Also, it most definitely wasn't orchestrated by Cadsuane to end that way. She was furious with Tam that he didn't continue to follow her script. She didn't plan on Rand being pushed to that edge.


You establish that Cadsuane "knows a lot more than she's letting on to", by your bet on which meaning her embroidery intends, though there is nothing to go on in deciding between the two options. Wait, watch this:

All of my money is on the former and this only goes to show that she knows no more than anybody else. I expect she'll try to convince Rand to sustain the seals, in direct contradiction to what Min has learned from Herid Fel's work.

See, it can work both ways. We don't know. Choosing a speculative position from a coin-flip choice, then laying that as the foundational evidence of your chosen conclusion, it's a logical fallacy.

As for Cadsuane's position regarding Alanna's bonding of Rand, I give her no leeway at all. She pretends to fury at Alanna for doing it, while admitting she might well have done the same. Forget "conditionals". That she would have more than considered it removes from her any allowance to chastise or punish Alanna for beating her to the punch. What's more, the biggest "condition" which makes her glad she hadn't had the opportunity, is that it fails to control him. So, her internal POV would have been more sanguine about his ambush bonding, had it actually been of use to compel him. While I dislike Cadsuance less than many, this is one issue on which I have no support for her.

RE: Why Sorilea gets a pass as compared to Cadsuane

It's ji'e'toh. Sorilea gets her way by invoking a person's own awareness of honor, and those areas in which they are falling short of the standard. Among the Aiel, there is little value in punishing someone who doesn't agree that they deserve it. The best show of ji is to recognize that you have toh, and ask the offended party to help you pay it. Anyone see Cadsuane working this way?
jack middleton
54. Jonathan Levy
Ouroboros@34 & forkroot@47:

In my opinion, saying that Cadusane succeeded in her plan to teach Rand Laughter & Tears because after all, at the end of TGS he has learned Laughter & Tears is like saying -
"Stalin successfully prepared Russia to deal with Germany (via the Ribbentrop-Molotov pact) because after all, in 1945 Russia won and Germany lost."

Or: "Kitchiner succeeded in his plan to defeat Germany on the Somme in the Great War, because after all, two years later Germany did ask for an armistice".

Or: "The Roman legions at Cannae did a very good job against Hannibal because after all, 10 years later he was defeated at Zama, wasn't he?"

In other words - no. Cadsuane blundered very badly. In hindsight, she had no idea what she was doing. A clever, subtle Aes Sedai would have drawn Rand and Tam together without either of them realizing they were being manipulated. Instead, she grabbed Tam, dictated to him what to say, confident that he would obey and certain that everything would transpire as she desired. WRONG, B****! Her actions sent Rand off his rocker, and it was only by a miracle that the world wasn't destroyed. Zero points for you, Caddy!
Tony Zbaraschuk
55. tonyz
For a long time, I thought that what Cadsuane would teach Rand & co was the ability to link -- but that just sort of gets slid over when Rand and Nynaeve link to cleanse the Taint. Maybe linking really is that simple.

Cadsuane: scary because you don't know what she's planning.

Sorilea: scary because you know that whatever you're planning, it's going to take second fiddle to what she's planning. Sorilea's a lot more out in the open than Cadsuane about what she wants and how she's going about it.

And repeated kudos to Leigh for pointing out the Shaido as an example of cultural dissolution. Excellent insight, and something we don't necessarily notice in our eagerness to loathe them.
Ron Garrison
56. Man-0-Manetheran
aspeo@46: "Could this mean that Alanna actually tried something on Cadsuane, but found out it wouldn't work? Or, am I simply seeing too much into it?" That's the way I read it too.

Looking Glass @ 48: "Let’s face it, if the Dark One’s named you Last Chance, you probably don’t want to go tempting fate any more than necessary." ROFLMAO!!!
jack middleton
58. Jonathan Levy

I noticed you picked out a line which also caught my attention:

" also does not like the way in which Alana says that Rand is hers; "she had the gall to say that!"

I've thought long and hard on Alanna's proprietary feelings towards Rand. We see them even more strongly in later books - for example, when Rand and Alanna meet in Far Madding (I forget which book it was). It always seemed incongruous to me. She bonded Rand against his will! He shielded her, threatened her, and ran away from her. He doesn't need her, and has a strong aversion to her. How could she possibly feel that she has a duty to take care of him?

Anyway, I've got a theory to explain it. It goes like this:

1) Verin knows a primitive form of Compulsion.
2) Verin's compulsion only works on someone who trusts you, and it helps if they are emotionally unstable.
3) Verin, after Rand is bonded, thinks to herself that it is very lucky that Alanna is still so emotionally unstable, because they have difficult decisions to make, and she needs to make sure Alanna goes along with her.
4) Verin has used compulsion on several Aes Sedai, to make them support Rand.

From this, I conjecture:
(A) Verin used compulsion on Alanna to make her support Rand.

5) Verin thinks to herself that the subjects of her Compulsion have to find reasons within themselves to do what she wants, otherwise the Compulsion won't work. (We've seen this rationalization most clearly with Elza, who is Black Ajah, but still supports Rand! Why? She supports Rand so he can get to the last battle and lose).

From this, I conclude:
(B) Alanna's excessively proprietary attitude towards a warder she bonded by force is the excuse required by Verin's Compulsion to rationalize her decision to support Rand.

What do you guys think?
Sam Mickel
59. Samadai
Lannis, I just saw on FB that Brandon is going to use your name in one of the books
Sam Mickel
60. Samadai
Jonathan Levy @58

I pretty much said the same thing over on the open thread earlier today.
Captain Hammer
61. Randalator
The sad truth of it is, if we switched everyone’s genders in WOT, Cadsuane’s tendency to dismiss and/or belittle Rand would not be less infuriating to most readers, but in my opinion it would not strike the majority of readers as being nearly as incongruent.

Ooooh, that's a particularly yummy looking cookie...with a large sharp pointy hook in it and a line attached to it. I wonder if I should eat..

jack middleton
62. wawwen
Nobody is interested in the significance of the numbers written on the Oath Rods/Binders?

Various forsaken have mentioned that they "Bind themselves like criminals" or "to be bound and see the end of her life approaching" but so far there hasn't been any discussion I can remember about how much life is "taken" from an OP user that swears on an Oath Road/Binder.

If in the AOL Binders were used to punish criminals it would make sense that there would be a sliding degree of punishment to them, similar to length of prison term.

Right now we know of two binders:

The Aes Sedai Oath Rod: inscribed with the number 3.
The Shaido Binder Rod: inscribed with the number 111.

We've seen that Aes Sedai have shortened life spans than that of the Kin, damane, Aiel, and presumably the Windfinders. The Aes Sedai all swear on the Binder inscribed with a 3, so we have a good sample size to work with, and we have the relative ages of various old Kin/damane/Aiel/etc to use as a sample of non-bound channellers.

It's pretty clear that "3" isn't 3 years or that only 3 oaths can be sworn. Possibly it means "a third" - removal of a third of your natural lifespan or restricting you to a third of your natural lifespan.

The problem then meets the much larger number that wouldn't fit into a percentage on the Shaido Binder.

With the Shaido Binder, we have only Galina who has used it. The question becomes what does the "111" mean, an upper limit on how many years that channeller can live, or how many additional years that channeller can live after taking the oath?

Then how does one even reconcile the number difference on each binder? I'm not even much of a fan of either the theories I just put forward since they don't mesh too well with each other.

Maybe they are just serial numbers left over from producing them?

Anyone else have an idea as to why there would be two AOL ter'angreal that do almost the exact same thing but have different numbers on them?
jack middleton
63. alreadymadwithmorecads
HArai @21
Even the respect she milks from the Aiel is unjustified. She gets credit for saving his life. When her own plan would actually have killed him. Aes Sedai could barely keep him alive. I'm with Jwezy, whatever it is she's gonna end up teaching Rand and his Asha'man, it's not gonna be something she intended. Possibly even the opposite of what she intends.

thewindrose @18
You can bet Ituralde noticed the chaotic orders. That's why he held on to the only one that made sense. Once he got the one that gave him carte blanche in waging the war against the Seanchan, he basically went incommunicado so as to avoid conflicting orders.

Isilel @20
Therava and co. are still following Sevanna because she now has black mail material on them. The knowledge that she was able to con them into killing one of their fellow Wise Ones, then lie about the murder to the other Wise Ones, once it gets out, will lose them a great deal of toh.

wawwen @62
I'm with the production serial numbers idea.
Jacy Clark
64. Amalisa
RE Cadsuane, Sorilea and ji'e'toh

TPoD, Chapter 27, "The Bargain", Min's POV:
The woman knew all about her and Rand. All about. She felt her cheeks heating. Sorilea seemed to be trying to decide if Min Farshaw was a suitable ... lover... for Rand al'Thor. Or maybe Sorilea wanted to know whether Rand was suitable for Min; it seemed that way at times. The Wise Ones accepted Min as one of them, or very nearly, but these past weeks, Sorilea had wrung her out like a laundress's mangle. Twice Min had tried balking at the incessant interrogation, and twice Sorilea had produced a switch! That terrible old woman simply bundled her over the side of the nearest table, and afterward told her that maybe that would loosen another scrap in her head.

What ji did Min owe Sorilea? Has Sorilea tried to meet her toh toward Min for whipping her? Is what Sorilea did to Min different at all from what Cadsuane has done to others? If it is, I don't see it.

I would buy the ji'e'toh argument a little easier if I ever saw Sorilea on the receiving end. So far, I haven't seen it.

TGS, Chapter 14, "A Box Opens", Cadsuane's POV:
"Is it wise to keep her (Semirhage) like this?" Sorilea asked, her tone implying that of any other she would have made a demand. For Cadsuane, she softened her words, and it almost brought a smile to Cadsuane's lips. They were like two aged hawks, Sorilea and she, accustomed to roosting and reigning, now forced to nest in neighboring trees. Deference did not come easily to either one of them.
(emphasis mine)

"Aged hawks"... I like that, all the more so because the description is dead on.

TGS, Chapter 31, "A Promise to Lews Therin", Cadsuane's POV:
She looked Sorilea in the eyes. "I have failed," she said.
The Wise One nodded, as if she had thought the same thing. Cadsuane forced herself not to show her annoyance.
"There is no shame in failure," Bair said, "when that failure was the fault of another."
Amys nodded. "The Car'a'carn is stubborn beyond all men, Cadsuane Sedai. You have no toh toward us."
"Shame or toh," Cadsuane said, "it will all be irrelevant soon. But I have a plan. Will you help me?"
The Wise Ones shared a look among them.
"What is this plan?" Sorilea asked.
Cadsuane smiled, then began to explain.

Sorilea agreed to, and helped Cadsuane implement, the Plan-with-a-Capital-P to bring Tam to Rand. Does Sorilea now have toh toward Rand? It will be interesting to see if Sorilea asks Rand to help her meet her toh. I, for one, am not going to hold my breath.

And, for what it's worth, I think Sorilea is every bit as awesome as Cadsuane, and vice versa. :)
Jacy Clark
65. Amalisa

After Moggy put out the lights, Graendal countered with a strange little globe of light, then spun webs of Compulsion around both Moggy and Cyndane/Lanfear... "...nearly strong enough to do harm, and the women stood staring at her adoringly, eyes wide and mouths hanging open in adulation, intoxicated with worship."

While Graendal didn't know that Cyndane is Lanfear, she did know that "the girl was stronger in the One Power than herself." So Compelling both of them at once was pretty impressive. At least, I thought so... :D


I think the numbers mean that we now know there were at least 111 binders made during the Age of Legends.


Thomas Keith
66. insectoid
Fork @47: Good points! BTW thanks for the shout-out on the last post—I'm honored to be called a friend. :)

Randalator @61: LOL!!

Captain Hammer
67. Randalator
Amalisa @64

And, for what it's worth, I think Sorilea is every bit as awesome as Cadsuane, and vice versa. :)

Yeah, on my Cadsuane-awesomness-scale that doesn't count for much. *ducks*

But I really liked Sorilea...until that Min-situation arose. Or will have had arosen...how do you talk about something that will happen in the future of the books but has had influence on you in the past? God, now I have a headache. And am in desperate need of a drink. Douglas Adams to the rescue!

Anyway, then it was (is/will be/has been) more or less "10 out of 10 for WO-style but minus several million for freakin' switching Min!!!" Ugh!
craig thrift
68. gagecreedlives
So I am 98.9% sure that when Moggy and Cyndane have their little shivering spell that its Moridin stroking their mind traps. But was this just really good timing or was he lurking somewhere watching? And are we any closer to a clue between the exact working relationship between Moridin and Shadar Haran?

And Moridin certainly has the touch. With just one stroke of his hand he can make his girls shiver and gasp. Makes me wonder what Graendal could do with the mind traps.......
Jacy Clark
70. Amalisa
So now I get a spam-thingy without even posting a link??? *is so confused*
72. Freelancer
I believe that a description of the binder rod as "taking" a known portion of one's life is not very realistic. Supposing that the numeral '3' meant as suggested, clipping a third of the bound person's life, what is the boundary of that third? A third of the person's entire lifespan from birth? A third of their remaining life at the time of binding? How could such a thing be knowable?

Likewise, it seems much more realistic that as a punitive device, one would be bound for a fixed-length sentence, after which the binder would be used to release them. Shortening one's life is a far different sort of punishment than making them unable to repeat their crime for a finite period.
Tess Laird
73. thewindrose
Sorila switching Min - the Wise Ones regard her as an apprentice or almost Wise One - maybe that gives Sorila some room to ummm spank. However, Min has not agreed like Egwene did to be treated like an honorary Aiel. So, Sorila stepped out of bounds there and owes Min toh. Which is getting larger because she has not adressed this issue. But then there is also the thought that non-Aiel cannot follow ji'e'toh, unless you are a Shaido. So I am not solving anything here:)

Forkroot - thanks for the shout-out(twice) that must mean I extra nice;)

I think Graendal was still holding the power while Cyndane and Moghedien were not, so that gave her an advantage to spin the Compulsion on them.

jack middleton
74. AndrewB
Dreamwalker @16 re mindtraps and TG:

I thought that people trapped in a mindtrap had full control of their actions until the mindtrap was broken. The person holding the mindtrap could send subtle reminders (i.e. stroking the mindtrap). The reason that Mogy and Cyndane do Moridin's bidding is not because they do not have complete control of their minds and souls; rather, Mogy and Cyndane fear that if they do not do Moridin's bidding, he will smash the mindtrap (sorry for such a wordy sentence).

the windrose @18 wrote: "When I get home I will look for the part about Therava being in Galina's nightmares - it made me think that Therava might be an 'unknown' dream-walker - unknown to Amys and crew."

IMHO, Therava being in Galina's dreams meant that Galina is having nightmares about Therava. WoT has given us no evidence that Therava is a dreamwalker.

Thanks for reading my musings.
Jacy Clark
75. Amalisa

When Min first joined Rand in LoC, he told Sulin that Min was his friend, that he wanted her to come to no harm and that anything done to her he would consider it the same as being done to him. Granted, Sulin is a Maiden and not a Wise One but I would imagine that the Wise Ones have been pretty thorough about questioning any Aiel about their interactions with the Car'a'carn.

Also, since then, Rand has been pretty obvious in his desire to protect Min.

To me, that even compounds the toh owed by Sorilea. She owes it to both Min and Rand - Min for the switching itself, and Rand for going against his expressed instructions. Maybe even to Sulin for the implication that she didn't insure Min's safety; the convolutions of ji'e'toh purely make my brain hurt sometimes... *lol*
Roger Powell
76. forkroot
gcl@68 (missed you in the shout-out, my bad)
So I am 98.9% sure that when Moggy and Cyndane have their little shivering spell that its Moridin stroking their mind traps. But was this just really good timing or was he lurking somewhere watching? And are we any closer to a clue between the exact working relationship between Moridin and Shadar Haran?
I wonder if the mindtrap tells the holder when the mindtrapped person is "stretching the bounds" so to speak. It would explain Moridin's perfect timing.

It would also explain why Moggy was so nervous about a few minutes delay to take a balefire shot at Nynaeve. How else would she feel like a UPS employee (measured to the minute)?
Kate Collura
77. dreamwalker
AndrewB @ 74

I think you are right. I didn't mean to say that a midtrap directly controls their actions. However, it does seem that Moridin is able to be constantly aware of what they are doing and give them reminders even when he is not physically with them. As others have pointed out as well, he seems to have perfect timing. This makes me believe anyway that he is aware of what they are doing on some level at least. It could make sense that he is aware of what is in their minds anyway.

In any case, if he is able to respond instantly to what they are doing, there are effectively not able to do something he doesn't want them to do without instant consequences, including destruction of the mintrap for something bad enough.
Scott Terrio
80. Renegade248
Darn spam filter.

Did someone mention cookies?

Lannis .
81. Lannis
Mindtrap = ::shudder::

Ugh. SWMNBN...

chaplainchris @ 22: No worries, I brought a big ol' tub of cookies because frankly folks, we is celebratin'!

Samadai @ 59: You're such a sweetie for noticing--I almost missed it! :D

Okay, and seriously, I can't focus on the post today because I saw on Facebook that my name has been chosen to be a flyspeck character's name in Towers of Midnight!

Please excuse me while I SQUEE!

Not lording it over anybody, just sharing, because frankly, not a whole lot of people know how excited I am right now. Seriously. About to vomit with joy. Somebody shoot me before I start barfing rainbows... I could die happy right now, if I only knew for certain who killed Asmodean... XD

(BTW, Graendal, your shit stinks.)
Tricia Irish
82. Tektonica
toryx & rosetintedworld: re: Cyndane. I always assumed she was a bit chagrined that she had fallen so far, in beauty and in the One Power. She was very haughty and lorded it over the other FS as much as possible, I think, given her personality. How embarrassing to be under Mori's thumb!

As for Cads plan: I think she intended to push Rand. There was a quote a while back that she wouldn't "hurt him any more than was necessary", I believe. I'm sure bringing Tam in was her idea and a good one. I wondered why no one suggested it before. Rand always loved and respected his dad and he was one of the two or three people in Randland he would trust.

That said, I don't think it was her plan to have Rand almost kill Tam and then hare off to Ebou Dar and nearly undo the world. I'm no big Cads fan, as you all must know by now, but I don't think she's evil. She just had a half-baked plan.

Back to reading.....
craig thrift
83. gagecreedlives
Its all good Forkroot. I havent been around posting a lot lately so dont slap yourself in the head on my account.

Just put a little more thought into it and Im guessing the mind trap might work a little way like the warder bond. Where you can get the general gist of their feelings if not exactly what they are up to. So when he feels them feeling anything particularly strong just gives them a little tap to remind them of their priorities.

Which could still leave Cyndane free to be Slayers employer

And a big Congratulations Lannis. I would be squeeing like nothing else at the moment
Jacy Clark
84. Amalisa

I think I have the spam filter figured out. Not how to circumvent it, but how it works. If you'll notice your post number is "80". I'll bet that your post that was caught by the spam filter will show up as "78" or "79" - after someone reviews it and determines that it is not, in fact, spam.


That is wicked AWESOME!! Congratulations!!!
Richard Boye
85. sarcastro
(Cyndane = Cynthia = Artemis = moon goddess = Selene = Lanfear)

And yet!

I got so much guff about that back in the day. No one on usenet recognized my comment Cyndane is a riff on Cynthia.

I feel vindicated ;)
Richard Boye
86. sarcastro

please correct me if i'm wrong, but i thought only Matt has the power-deflecting ter'angreal while Cadsy's only warns if there is OP afoot.....

The more we see of Cadsuane, we learn that her collection of trinkets has a lot of uses - the whole set of them is called a 'paradis net' by Semirhage later, but she has ornaments that have lots of useful little deus ex machina features.

She has a Saidar detector (it goes cool like Mat's medallion), an angreal, a Well, something that lets her know when she's in the presence of a male channeller, but the one that goes cool in the presence of Saidar ... the jury is still out whether it absorbs the flows like Mat's medallion, or simply ... directs them away from her.

2.3.13: Is Cadsuane's hair thingy a Ter'angreal?
Noneo Yourbusiness
87. Longtimefan
@ Amalisa

My bad. I thought when you mentioned taking on the two in an OP cat fight you were speaking of the two fighting not Graendal taking them on as a cat fight.

Maybe that is not much clearer but I hope you know what I mean when I say I now know what you meant. I think. :)

text can be misleading with out the spoken inflection to grant importance to certain words which really helps clarify what the person is intending.

As for the Oath Rod my theory is one is Arabic script and one is Roman Numerals but they are both three.

Why three?

Because it is a magic number, duh.

(If I were the linking type this is where the link to Multiplication Rock would be.)
John Massey
88. subwoofer
Good Lord! Of all the chapters in the galaxy we have to deal with back to back, and to have this after a Faile thread- gah!

Cranky Pants- heh- all I am thinking is a classic scene from the movies-

"Kick her in the nards!"
"Cranky Pants doesn't have nards!"
"Just do it!"
"Whoa! Cranky Pants has nards."

It could happen, one can hope. About the only redeeming thing here is Sorilea. She is total awesome sauce. That head honcho of the Wise Ones makes a pact with er... The Most Annoying Character in the WoT Universe... speaks volumes. I may have to reevaluate the situation. This is why I can't refer to Cranky Pants as Satan any more, maybe just a minor demon. Maybe she is not a total git.

The other chapter. Hmmmmmmm. Me -ten foot pole- nope. Not gonna do it. Nothing good can come out of talking about any of it. Lalalalalalala.

John Massey
89. subwoofer
Why Sorilea gets a pass. The WO's have taken some of the AS under their wings as er... apprentices. Seems to me they need it. Sorilea is the Poobah. When she snatches whatshernut's face and gives her praise and the Aes Sedai is actually baffled as to why she is pleased at the praise. Sorilea does not have much Power but she commands the respect of the rest of the WO's because she has earned it. Aes Sedai are push overs IMHO. Just like the Aiel are covered in Awesome Sauce over the Wetlanders, the WO's rock as compared to the AS. It just is.

Oh, snap- I see you toryx:)

@forkroot- did you just call Tam the New Coke?!

Weee snaps! Free- winner winner chicken dinner! Sor's got the ji'e'toh goin' on:)

jack middleton
90. MaerlynsRose
Hi everyone! Long time reader, first time poster. Thanks for the post, Leigh...between this and Lost, Tuesdays are always awesome. ;)

Re: Cadsuane and the "accidentally on purpose taught Rand laughter and tears" thing...I honestly don't believe that her whole pedagogical role has been filled. Sure, all the arguments everyone has already stated make perfect sense, but I can also just see Cadsuane, who refuses and refuses and REFUSES to learn how to respect Rand and sticks to the same tired routine that makes him angry, trying to pull something like giving Tam a script that SHE thinks will make Rand see sense. I think her intent was to have Tam bring Rand to a sane place...in all reality, who could have suspected the edge that that meeting would push him to? After all, Tam wasn't supposed to mention the C word. So if the plan acheived the correct results, but not the way she planned at all, is she responsible? I would argue that Min's vision suggests an ACTIVE role, and that whole situation I just rambled about seems...not so active?

And on Rand's character...I've been doing a literary analysis on EotW recently (:P), and I really think that Rand's gradually deteroriating state of mind is reflective of the OTHER evil...Shadar Logoth, of course. There's a lot more juxtaposition of the two in the early books, so the victory we just had, the embrace of everything NOT that, puts him firmly back in the human world, and it was the only way he was EVER going to defeat Ishydin. Not that that has anything to do with anything, I just thought it was cool. :D

@28 Kendu: I could be wrong, but aren't the Towers of Midnight some kind of Seanchan imperial prison?
John Massey
91. subwoofer
Yay Lannis:) Good times! Maybe somebody BrandonSanderson like would name a woofer after me:)hint hint I didn't get my dingle ball and I've been super good lately;)

Welcome to the bunker MaerlynsRose - I'd offer you cookies but some greed gusses scarfed them all. How abouts some canapées?

Bonnie Andrews
92. misfortuona
Wow really late to the party, but there are still cookies left so its okay.

Leigh: I am so impressed with your ability to say something about anything and make it interesting. Yeah for you.

Lannis: Wow, being a character in any book would be cool, but you get to be in the best series ever. WOW. I am squeeing for you. :D

Er, it's probably just me, but I get the feeling you've been into the ice tea again? ;p

MaerlynsRose: Welcome to the party. I see Subs brought canapes. All I've got is oosquai, but you're welcome to it.

And about the chapters, I got nothing.

Mis-walking on sunshine
john mullen
93. johntheirishmongol
I have to say these chapters were pretty useless in moving the story forward, except maybe for the Cad/Sorilia pact, which could have been done in 1/10th the time. I hate to say this but somewhere in here an editor/publisher should have taken RJ aside and got him refocused on the story, and not all the extraneous characters.
Lannis .
94. Lannis
@ Various: Thanks guys! I knew you'd get it--the hubby went to bed, figures he won't be able to live with me from now until October... aaaand he's probably right! ;)

@ MaerlynsRose: Welcome! :)
Roger Powell
95. forkroot
I hate to say this but somewhere in here an editor/publisher should have taken RJ aside and got him refocused on the story, and not all the extraneous characters.
Considering that RJ was married to the editor, I think you're left with the publisher. As for Tom Dougherty ... hey, more plot lines = more books = more revenue, right?

I do distinctly remember opening up TPoD, reading the prologue that starts with Ethenielle and the Borderlander armies and thinking "Oh no, please not another plot line!"

On the other hand, trying reading Victor Hugo some time. Now there was a guy who really needed an editor!
Sharon E.
96. Sulin
RE Sorilea having toh Dang, you guys always give me more stuff to think about. *where's that drink?*

@ Lannis- That is AWESOME- Squee all you want! :)
Tricia Irish
97. Tektonica
Leigh...thank you again for making the Shaido tolerable by extrapolating to general societal degradation. I am always so irritated at them, I just skim over their parts now. I'm still clueless as to why the WO's follow Sevannah. Even with the blackmail thing. They could take care of that cleverly. She's an idiot and has gotten them deeper and deeper into trouble.

Late to post as I keep trying to catch up, and answer the phone, and make dinner, and read a few more, and every time I refresh, there's 20 more! I can't keep up today/night! Fast and Furious! Good thoughts all.....


Glad you brought up those oath rods. I don't remember reading that at all, until this reread. What do those numbers mean? It doesn't seem that RJ would even mention they had numbers unless they were significant. They could've just had markings or texture or something. Ummmmm.....

Lannis, Congratulations! Major league cool. Can't wait to see your name in print!

Hi Mis**waves**....yeah, Sub's in the iced tea again. Glad I'm not the only one sensing a continuity breakdown there.

Sub: 'splain yourself! And thanks for the canapes! Yum.

Maerlynsrose: Welcome!! The bunker is well stocked and we are behaving, so come on in.

BTW, could you elaborate a bit more about the Rand vs. Shadar Logoth relationship....I didn't quite get that. Did you think SL was what started him on his road to "hardness" and that was what he rejected on Dragonmount at the end of tGS? confused.

Cadsuane: I still think Rand's revelations at the end of tGS had only tangential relationship to Cads Plan. She got Tam there, good move. Giving Tam a script, bad move. She could have explained Rand's mental state, the pressure he's under and the fact that he needs someone he loves and can trust around him to advise and mentor him. Tam would've known exactly how to talk to Rand, his son! But she tried to "guide" him and well, it worked even less than her "guidance" of Rand. The only credit I give her is for getting Tam there. The rest didn't work at all they way she envisioned, IMHO.
Captain Hammer
98. Randalator
sub @91

I'd offer you cookies but some greed gusses scarfed them all. How abouts some canapées?

Oh no! What have you done? This will cause so much trouble. Let's just hope that we're all professionals and rise above it...
Tricia Irish
99. Tektonica

Thanks for the shout out. I am deeply honored. This forum is a daily joy. Wonderful, thoughtful people and ideas. It always give my brain a jump start with my java joe in the morning. Thank you all.
jack middleton
100. MaerlynsRose
Thanks for the hellos, all! *surreptitiously sneaks a canapee*

@Tektonica: ::shrugs:: There's really no special relationship per se, no one event that ties how Rand becomes later with, say, his travels with infected Mat, just in an overall, thematic sense, it was something that stood out to me this time around.

RJ elaborates on the theme of what can best be thought of as "human" evil vs. "natural" evil, or evil in the abstract. The latter is something humans can't control, goes back to the creation story and is the root of all (and, as I'm sure lots of people on here know, reflects the Zoroastrian influence of the series and Christianity in general). The former is what humans breed of their own desire to be helpful and good IF those desires aren't aided by compassion and trust and unity with your fellows. The hallmarks of that are, of course, all the things we know and despise in Rand by this point-- what made me think of it was Alanna's report, actually, about how Rand is full of suspicion and rage. He trusts no one, he confides in and believes in no one, and just like Aridhol, claims to fight for the Light while losing everything the Light stands for in the broader sense-- goodness, purity, faith, trust, all human virtues. RJ really plays these things against one another A LOT in the first book, and I was just struck by how very much it applies to Rand's laughter and tears situation. He isn't exactly swinging a red light saber yet, cause Ishydin and co are still very much on his case, but he's being allowed to run free as he is because it's a different type of evil he's working, one that might have ultimately given Ishydin what he wanted...a total break in the balance. If your good champion is just another shade of black, then...so much for the Pattern, yo.

I guess what distinguishes them in my mind is the desire behind it all...Ishydin is evil because he wants bad things to happen. Rand is "evil" because he's lost sight of what makes good things really good, and not just "not bad". Either way, it gets the job done, but something to be watched from a bad guy's perspective...you don't really know what will happen with someone who isn't really "bad", but certainly isn't "good". It's a very human struggle for Rand, which also distinguishes him from his nemesis...Ishydin is on a whole other plain of weird and disconnected. Rand still fights in the human world, for the human cause, to the point where he will battle an ultimate human evil inside before he can defeat abstract evil outside.

Or something. :P
Hugh Arai
101. HArai
Amalisa@64,@75, thewindrose@73: I doubt any of the Aiel would consider Sorilea to have toh to Min or Rand for that. A young Aiel woman holding out on a Wise One about her relationships is considered to be being an idiot and deserves what she gets. In this case being adopted by the Wise Ones was not a benefit for Min.

You point out correctly that Min didn't choose to buy in, but it's apparent that the Aiel are willing to enforce their honor codes unilaterally. A less than admirable facet of their culture.

In any event, as I pointed out @41 Sorilea engaging in Cadsuane-like behavior makes me like Sorilea less, not Cadsuane more.
Hugh Arai
102. HArai
By the way, a sincere congratulations to you Lannis. I have also been lucky enough to have my name on a character in a favorite author's series and it's a great feeling.

@forkroot: Thanks for the shoutout. You're one of several people I look forward to posts from.

MaerlynsRose@100: Food for thought.
jack middleton
103. Der_Wikinger
The Path Of Daggers was the first book I had to wait for (yeah, I know, ain't I lucky), and while I seemed to have fit the pattern of having it as the least favourite book, I recently was rereading it and found 3 or 4 major scenes that I either liked or were of great importance to the storyline. The first scene is the meeting of the Borderland Kings & Queens. I missed the chance to comment on it while it was the current chapter in the blog, but to summarize my views : Tenobia wants to either kill Davram or to punish him severely ( banish him for example ) for supporting The Dragon Reborn. As to the intentions of the rulers towards Rand, they want him to come to the Blight and start doing his thing there. They don't like it one bit that he's wasting his time and playing games with the "Southlanders".

The second scene that I truly enjoyed in TPoD was the one we're reviewing now, Chapter 12 "New Alliances". Shadar Haran would be the epitome of Awesomeness Inc. and one of my fav characters if not for the fact that he's a fade, shadowspawn, the Dark One's N'avi Puppet, and in general of dark persuasions. Still...He knows how to make an Entrance and that piece of just bending down and snapping two of Graendal's fave servants is just too Disco. The one thing that was kind of disappointing about the villains in WoT was the lack of ability or follow-through that most Forsaken displayed. Most seemed too enmeshed in their own trap weaving, and too caught up in their own egos to properly counter the Light Forces or to face them mano a mano. "Look, I'm a Forsaken, tremble and fall to your knees !!" Well, shiver my timbers, good for ya ! But what else are u gonna do ?? But Shadar Haran ( & one other ) is that lone light , that beacon of strength for the Dark Forces. Actually, Ishidyn is my favourite Forsaken, and my second favourite character overall. Who is my favourite WoT character you might ask ? Rand. Yeah, I'm schizophrenic like that ^^;. So, I guess that makes me the only one fan who will be cheering for both sides, come Tarmon Gai'don.
jack middleton
104. Vidulous
Hmm... I kinda thought that "but that could have led to its own catastrophe" was referring to the giant Saidin/Saidar Radar (Saidar/din-dar?). If he had been brought up there, he would eventually have channeled there, since he was a sparker. Presumably if they find a man who can channel there they can deal with it pretty quickly. Snip, no more DR. Oops.

Having said that, I certainly don't disagree with the comment that a Rand raised to be submissive would be a whole other catastrophe in and of itself.
Sandy Brewer
105. ShaggyBella
I don't have much to say about these 2 chapters....
Thinking about the Mind Traps, though... any guesses as to who the crystal vial with the red liquid inside that Elayne & Co found in Ebu Dar belonged to? It sure sounds like a cour'souvra.
Janet Hopkins
106. JanDSedai
@Bella: IIRC there was a quote to the effect that the crystal vial was *not* a mind-trap. But I don't remember if they said what it *was*.

Sounds like we need to make lists as to what everyone's bringing to the potluck in the Bunker on Tuesdays and Fridays-- we don't want the newbies to be frightened off if we give Sub something to drink on an empty stomach! I would suggest nachos, but can't help but think of the seven layer dip Bowl of the Winds we had at Christmas. Which, as I recall, was also Sub's fault...Howabout those little two-bite cheesecakes? With chery pie filling on the side? and if there's enough filling left, we can have cherry pie! "Can she bake a cherry pie, Billie boy,Billy Boy... Whoo! Sounds like I need to get to bed before my sleeping pill takes effect...
Alice Arneson
107. Wetlandernw
JWezy@11 - the plural of Asha'man is Asha'man.

Re: Cadsuane and what she has to teach Rand & the Asha'man - BWS said she has "partially" fulfilled Min's viewing, but with no further elaboration that I know of. Could be that it's the laughter and tears thing, could be that it's something else entirely. Some have speculated that it could be linking, since she & her AS crew formed circles to defend Rand & Nynaeve at the Cleansing. (Neither is ruled out by BWS's response to Freelancer, and as far as I know there have been no other recorded Q&A to either RJ or BWS on the subject.) Mostly, any guesses we have are still in the realm of speculation. I would be thoroughly unsurprised if we get to the end of the series and still don't know for sure what Min's viewing meant. I'm not entirely convinced that "laughter and tears" is all there is to Cadsuane's plan; it's the part that she and Sorilea agree on, but there's no proof that it's the whole plan. Maybe this week I'll post a little speculation I've been working on.

Amalisa @26 - Appreciated your notes on Cadsuane & Sorilea. IIRC, I disliked them both (with a certain grudging respect) on my early reads, but by now I really like them both. Not that either is infallible, but I personally think they both have a certain right to the respect they are accorded by their own kind (i.e. AS and WO).

Kendu @28 - Good thoughts. Slightly different take on the events of those last chapters of TGS; good insight. Not that Rand would become a god, but the point about destruction possibly being preferable to the alternative is well made.

schrodinger @38 - Somehow I doubt it.

wawwen @62 - I'm with serial numbers. From comments by various Forsaken, it's fairly clear (IMHO) that the "binder rods" were readily available when needed in the AOL. I.e. there were a fair few of them around; I assumed that was the reason RJ gave us the numbers.

ShaggyBella @105 - The cour'souvra is described (CoS Ch 25) as a "tiny fragile cage of gold wire and crystal," while the ter'angreal Elayne found (PoD Ch 2) is a "tiny stoppered vial that might have been crystal, with a dark red liquid inside." The only actual similarities in the descriptions are "tiny" and "crystal" so I personally don't believe they are the same.
craig thrift
108. gagecreedlives
JanDSedai I'll bring some Pav. Great stuff

ShaggyBella @105

I thought it was a lava lamp
Birgit F
109. birgit
She bonded Rand against his will! He shielded her, threatened her, and ran away from her. He doesn't need her, and has a strong aversion to her. How could she possibly feel that she has a duty to take care of him?

Alanna is Green Ajah, and that is how they treat their warders.

If he had been brought up there, he would eventually have channeled there, since he was a sparker.

He couldn't have channeled inside the city. The ter'angreal could only detect his channeling if he went outside the zone where men are blocked from channeling but remained inside the range of detecting channeling.
craig miller
110. craigpmiller
Upon reflection ...
The Shaido and Mera’din breaking away is reminiscent of the beginning of the modern Aiel breaking away from those that still followed the Way Of The Leaf.
Anger and fear leading the way...
Tricia Irish
111. Tektonica

Thank you for taking time to spell that all out. Beautifully said!

RJ elaborates on the theme of what can best be thought of as "human" evil vs. "natural" evil, or evil in the abstract. The latter is something humans can't control, goes back to the creation story and is the root of all (and, as I'm sure lots of people on here know, reflects the Zoroastrian influence of the series and Christianity in general).......He trusts no one, he confides in and believes in no one, and just like Aridhol, claims to fight for the Light while losing everything the Light stands for in the broader sense-- goodness, purity, faith, trust, all human virtues......Rand is "evil" because he's lost sight of what makes good things really good, and not just "not bad"....it's a distinctly human struggle....etc.

What you said....loved it. The Whole Point of WOT, in a nutshell, or, er, your post. Think I'll bookmark....

JanD'Sedai@106: LOL. I'm not much of a desert person...I'll bring something to grill....maybe some good ol' messy ribs. Give Suffa something to clean up. Let me know, y'all.....

Wetlander@107: Looking forward to your ponderings.....

You guys have said it all. I've nothing to add. I'm just enjoying. Actually, my head is back in The Shadow Rising at the moment. Sorry. ;-P
John Massey
112. subwoofer
Whew! It was fairly hot here yesterday- er... northern Blight-wise. The folks living in Tear may not think so, but I am fairly sure that at some point yesterday my underwear spontaneously combusted.

Sub, 'splain yourself? Me? Which part? The kicking Caddy in the nards? The canapees? Some cookie monster scarfing all the goodies? Me not liking Cranky Pants?

Well... as far as everything goes, heads up, I am lactose intolerant so there was excess reaction to the 7-layer and will be to the proposed cheesecake. No worries, I'll muscle through, but I may have to be in quarantine for a bit after;)

I am going with what Free said about ji'e'toh and the old one, spot on.

As far as Min being switched... er... did anyone take pictures:P

@MarRose- good stuff. I did always think that Rand was making the same mistake. To beat the Shadow, he was becoming harder than the Shadow. Much like our beloved city Aridhol. And, in a way, he was tainted by Fain/Mordeth(sp?) in that he was becoming unbending, yet brittle.

Tricia Irish
113. Tektonica
Dearest Sub@112: You know we love you, right?! This would be a very serious, nerd-filled exercise without you.

After the 7-layer, you can rest in the hot tub and the bubbles will hide all.

And yes, we here in Tear are steaming already. We watch the mold grow for entertainment, now that the snowbirds have migrated back to the Blight. There's a reason Tear, er Florida, wasn't a retirement mecca until the 1950's when they invented air-conditioning.
Captain Hammer
114. Randalator
sub @112

As far as Min being switched... er... did anyone take pictures:P

Hey! No! Bad subwoofer! That's a bad subwoofer!
Marcus W
115. toryx
Re: Cadsuane's lesson:

I've always thought that the lesson Cadsuane needed to teach the Asha'man and Rand was that they needed to work together with the Aes Sedai in order to be successful. Neither Aes Sedai nor Asha'man are complete without working with the other.

If that were the case, the part that has been accomplished might actually be in regards to the Asha'man who have bonded with the Aes Sedai. Rand's would be accomplished once he knows Egwene's anger and agrees to work with the Tower instead of doing everything on his own.

Cadsuane might want to teach Rand to know laughter and tears but that might not be what he needs to learn from her.

The one thing that has been consistent throughout the series as a whole is that POV characters are not reliable sources. They're wrong all the time and we just can't use their beliefs as a strong foundation for an argument.
diane heath
116. jadelollipop
I am reading LOC at the moment. I just finished Chapter 10 where Alanna bonded Rand. Moraine's letter warned against trusting Verin (or any Aes Sedai except Egwene and Nynaeve). Alanna's act reinforced his distrust way before Elaida's delegation boxed him up for delivery.
The saddest thing though was when he wrapped Bode and the other Emond Fielder in Air.
"Best that they wanted to be clear of him. Best for them. He just wished he could have talked a little while longer about home. A little while longer with them seeing only Rand Al'Thor."
I always tear up at this point.
James Jones
117. jamesedjones
115 toryx

But Min said that they wouldn't like learning it from her. None of them would like it at all.

Damer, though, seems pretty ok with the lesson. Not just the results, but the initiation itself.
Marcus W
118. toryx
Jamesedjones @ 117:

Well in the beginning they wouldn't have liked it. Time and circumstance changed things. There's nothing that says they'll still hate the lesson after they've learned it.

There's a lot of other Asha'man who still need the lesson and they're not likely to like it all that much either.
Tess Laird
119. thewindrose
Lannis Yay!!!

IIRC, you also won something at TOR, you either have Mats luck or are Ta'veren. But getting your name in the book - way cool!!

MaerlynsRose - Welcome! Great thoughts!

Raul Gallegos
120. Master_Asmodean
jadelollipop@116: Yeah, that scene was difficult when he scared the girls. But in a way I see it as a way for them to stay away from him. That way they won't become targets. Similar to how he had to ignore going back home when the WC were being jerks there.
Matthew Smith
121. blocksmith

Wow...VCT!!! Is it raining on your parade if I write that I hope your character survives?


Either that or you need to call up the recent ESPN3 ad campaign.

On the oath rods...

We have been informed that the impact to a channeller's natural longevity is a result of the number of oaths taken. One oath=not much, three oaths=a significant amount, 111 oaths=hit by a bus tomorrow?

I tend to agree that either the numbers are serial numbers of a kind or perhaps were designated for use for some category of criminal activity and they carried more...impact... based on their number. Example, the 3 Rod was for J-walking, speeding, littering. The 111 was for putting people in boxes and periodically beating them.
Tricia Irish
122. Tektonica
I just read a short synopsis of an ancient Roman novel, The Golden Ass, by Apuleius, c. 2nd century AD. And I think there are some very interesting Perrin/Faile parallels….but then, maybe I am just looking for these things these days!

It is Milesian in form, ie: tales within the Tale. Books 4-6 is the allegorical tale of Cupid and Psyche: His wanderings, a woman’s kidnapping(Faile) and erotic adventures (Berelain trying to bed him) and is a spoof of the classic Greek “young lover’s” novels.

The plot involves a man, Lucius, who through a mistaken love potion is transformed into a donkey (Perrin, slow and careful, steady.) who ends up working for some bandits. The bandits have captured a young woman. (Shaido dogs capture Faile, et al.) He overhears the story of Cupid and Psyche while traveling as the donkey of the bandits. The story of Cupid (eros, love) and his marriage to and separation from Psyche. (soul)

He learns that to become unenchanted, he must eat roses. He has many misadventures, and fails to actually consume the roses. He finally throws himself on the mercy of Isis, (Seanchan, WO’s?) who transform him back into a man. (Accepts his leadership role, conquers the Shaido, gets his wife back)

Basically, it's the story of Desire and the Soul. And an allegory of the progress of the soul towards immortality.
(Hero of the Horn?)

You know the old saying, “If you are a hammer, everything looks like a nail.”? Well, I’m probably seeing WOT mythology in most everything I read now. This is probably a reach, but we know that RJ was very widely read and merged many allegories and myths together to form his own, grounded in our familiar tropes….not just Arthurian. I don’t think he is ever totally literal, but changes and combines facets of many tales into the WOT.

I just thought is was kind of fun, interesting and relevant at the moment. FWIW.

Sorry about the Wall 'O Text.
Matthew Smith
123. blocksmith
Oh Tek. You know you need to be careful around here whenever you start talking about golden asses. I can here Subwoofer's keyboard warming up from here.
Barry T
124. blindillusion
Hmm, sequence involving Sevanna, Therava, Galina and Cadsuane. All that’s needed is for Katerine to be there and I’d be going slightly bugshit reading through this. Meh.

As for the deconstruction of the Shaido...well, didn’t everyone kind of see it coming? Look at their name: Shaido…Shadow…. The Shaido are a shadow of the Aiel. (or perhaps the black sheep? Baa? =) Rambling, how do I love thee.

Cyndane – Spot on from the first appearance, but I have to say, I liked Lanfear more. Bat-crazy renegade trumps stir-crazy lapdog.

*Slaps forehead* I do suppose I finally figured why people keep saying Graendal did the Deed Most Foul (i.e. poor Asmodean): She mentions wondering around the digs of her vanquished compatriots after their…vanquishing. So, stands to reason she was wondering around Rahvin’s Den of Some of the Most Atrocious Shit to Take Place in the ENTIRE Series after he gets taken out by Nynaeve and Rand.

And, in the why was Cyndane placed over Moghedien category…it stands to reason it’s because Moridin knows about the Ebou Dar incident. So, while I very seldom makes cases for absolutes in regards to the works of another, I’m going to go right on and make one…the sensation Cyndane and Moghedien felt during this sequence was a direct result of Moirdin stroking the mindtraps. Now, does he know exactly what Cyn and Mog were saying? Meh.

As for the Oath Rods…. Well, it’s pretty obvious why we have a 111 and a 3. 111 ~ 1+1-1= 1 and 3 to get, you guessed it, that most wonderful number, 13.

Another thing about the Oath Rods. I’m going to agree that the numbers are serial numbers.

Somewhere on Terez’s theoryland pages there are quotes about the Oath Rods, but I have no access to those pages from work.

~ Lannis. Very cool.
Jacy Clark
125. Amalisa

Nicely done! The parallels are very interesting!

You know the old saying, “If you are a hammer, everything looks like a nail.”? Well, I’m probably seeing WOT mythology in most everything I read now.

Heh... I was playing Wordtwist on FB and kept trying to make "saidar" a word. It may be time to try that twelve step program again... :D

lol@blocksmith and blindillusion ("Bat-crazy renegade trumps stir-crazy lapdog")
Bonnie Andrews
126. misfortuona
Bunker parties
Put me down for bacon-wrapped appies, cherries and chicken breast for starters. Oh and tequilla. I've got a bottle waiting.

Sub@112 ROFLMAO. You are a bad Woof.

Cool stuff, and it isn't just you. I swear I saw Asmodean in my local drug store yesterday. ;D

I knew you'd get there. ;)

And I still got nothing to say about the chapters.

Mis-mmmm bacon
Lannis .
127. Lannis
wind @ 119: Yes! Yes, I did win a graphic novel for a giveaway a while back... it's sitting on the shelf among the To Read list... XD

Oddly, I usually never win anything through luck alone... skill, sometimes, but not through chance. Of course, if I had my druthers, I'd totally take my name in ToM! ACK! XD

blocksmith @ 121: Is it raining on your parade if I write that I hope your character survives? Funny, just last night I was debating: better to be killed? Survive? Light? Dark? I got NO hints as to where the name would land (occasionally BWS mentions "hope you're good with a spear" or something similarly indicative of what subgroup the fan's name will appear)... yeah, nothing. So I'm all a-tingle. I hope if the character dies, it's EPIC! XD

Tek @ 122: Sounds like a possibility... we all know RJ was well-read. Linda at 13th D would be the best bet to answer off-hand, I'd think (unless there's something in RJ's blog archives), but it definitely sounds plausible to me. :)

Amalisa @ 125: re: saidar... sign me up for that program, I've done that myself a time or two. On Scramble, too. :S

EDIT: GD typos. They're out to get me...
Tricia Irish
129. Tektonica

Asmodean is alive! And living in the Blight! I knew it.
Neenurneenur Graendal.

Ummmmm Bacon.....
jack middleton
130. Rand Al'Todd
RE: Caddy and the lessons for Rand and the Asha'man

I still like my LOONEY THEORY (tm) that Caddy got the story of Lews Therrin's STRIKE from Norla, the "old wilder" hiding in the Black Hills, and the source of Caddy's Para-net. (Norla being 3000+ year old female AS who opposed Lews plan and prevented any female AS from linking to support the Strike. - Part of my theory is that she went to the 'Finn and one of her wishes was to live to see the Dark Lord properly sealed away again. Yes- I know that virtually everyone disagrees - part of the reason its a "LOONEY THEORY"(tm).)

So part of what Caddy has to teach is the RIGHT way to seal the bore. Note that RJ said that just having women participate would probably only suceeded in having both parts of the Source get tainted, so the next try has to be something different from either what Lews wanted to do or what he actually did. But recall that so far, no one in modern Randland knows the story of the STRIKE. Rand has picked up a very little from Lews memories (and it will be interesting to RAFO if the new, post-Storm Rand has better access to those memories now that he says Crazy Therin wasn't really there.)

Also, a second LOONEY THEORY is that the tower mentioned in the prologue (where the Borderland rulers meet) is the EXIT from 'Finnland - the counterpart of the Tower of Gengi - I think that's where Thom, Matt, Mo and anyother survivors will reenter our world. Not much evidence to support that one, but just a feelin.

Also, another vote that the "binders" have serial numbers.
Sharon E.
131. Sulin
The saddest thing though was when he wrapped Bode and the other Emond Fielder in Air.
"Best that they wanted to be clear of him. Best for them. He just wished he could have talked a little while longer about home. A little while longer with them seeing only Rand Al'Thor."
I always tear up at this point.
Me too! It's a very sad moment.

@Rand(130) On your second LOONEY THEORY- I've had the same feeling about that tower too.

So, we have lots of great stuff for the bunker already-oooh pavlova-yum!- but I want to contribute some Sangria (because it's so flamin' hot and humid here) and some good ol' home-made quesadillas and flautas.

Hi Mis! *waves at Mis*
Alice Arneson
132. Wetlandernw
Just a note for those who haven't seen this quote yet (if any such person exists here):
...the Oath Rod is what was in the Age of Legends called a binder. It was used on criminals. If you committed a violent act, or some sort of criminal act, with a binder, someone who could channel could be constrained from ever doing that again, and the result of having three of the Oaths, is the ageless appearance. One would not produce agelessness, but even one would shorten life, and three of them put a cap on Aes Sedai’s lives, on how long they could live.
-(from a Q&A session in Budapest, April 2003)

This indicates, among other things, that there were multiples of the Oath Rod/binder. The rest is just included FYI if you didn't know already.
Ron Garrison
133. Man-0-Manetheran
Rand Al'Todd - I like the looney theory about the tower in the Black Hills being an exit. Like the gun on the mantle, why introduce it if you are not going to use it?

Oath Rod: When I read it, I saw the 111 as a "3" expressed in slash marks rather like a Roman numeral.
Tricia Irish
134. Tektonica
Sulin: Where are you that you are hot and humid too?

Rand Al'Todd@103:

You know, I kind of like parts of your Looney Theory. I hope someone knows how to seal the damn Bore for good! It would be great if Cads had that info. Why she hasn't divulged said info yet is a question.

I think Min will have her MOA with her books and theories. Maybe now that she has Cads respect, (from the Calandor info she sussed from Fel's books) they will put their heads together and figure it out. Or something Min knows will trigger a memory for Cads. ??

So if the tower in the borderlands is the Finn exit, will Mat and his cronies appear at the right time in the right place to fight there? Dun Dun Dun....tune into the ToM to find out!

Edit: For bad wording. Oops.
jack middleton
135. BenM
Wow, people can be so... vehement. I actually like Faile, though she sometimes annoys me. Not a huge Cads fan. But I don't hate either of them. I wouldn't expect everyone to be univerally liked, but few characters are worth outright hatred. (Therava, as one example.) Mainly just the nastiest and/or evilest ones. Our favorite sneaky-Verin actually had a pretty good thought about Cads. Think of her as your stern elderly aunt, who won't take any crap from anybody. She is what she is. That doesn't mean you have to like her, but hating her for being who she is, is kind of goofy, IMHO.

Aside from that, she makes mistakes, as do we all. But she seems to be one of the best AS for competence (in general) and upholding the dignity and position of the Aes Sedai. And where do people get the idea that she's so reliant on the power? I don't think she does more than most AS do. (Not much more than a switch of air occasionally.) She's clearly ready to use the power, if she has to. She seems pretty good at using her will, standing, or AS manipulation as necessary, similar to Sorilea. The power is a last resort, if someone like Alanna tries to attack her, for example.

I'm not claiming she's perfect, or likeable, but she is what she is.
Sharon E.
136. Sulin
Tek@ 134-, I'm in Texas and it's bloody hot and humid here today.

Oh and it would be so awesome for Mat and Friends to appear from the Black Hills tower, just in the nick of time. Go Mat!

jack middleton
137. BenM
DW @ 103:

re: the Forsaken

"The one thing that was kind of disappointing about the villains in WoT was the lack of ability or follow-through that most Forsaken displayed. Most seemed too enmeshed in their own trap weaving, and too caught up in their own egos to properly counter the Light Forces or to face them mano a mano. "Look, I'm a Forsaken, tremble and fall to your knees !!" Well, shiver my timbers, good for ya ! But what else are u gonna do ?? "

We actually get some insight into the baddies in TGS, from, once again, Verin.

It's been a while since I read it, but IIRC, the DO seems to value SELFISHNESS, not merely competence, being a team player, strength in the power, etc. So, it may be disappointing to a degree, but not terribly surprising.

And really, isn't serving evil about as short-sighted as you can get? Especially when you consider the not-so-looney theory that the Pattern is the DO's prison, and Nae'blis just means "last to die".

And how can you trust any promise an evil entity makes, anyway? Even if they've kept every promise they've made to you so far, they could and probably will betray you at any time. One of the little mini-themes, that's subtly woven through the series, is the bad ends that come to those who are foolish enough to serve evil. Fain, Fain's darkfriend cattle, Gode, Galina, Kadere, to name a few. One of the best examples is the treatment of Moggy and Mesaana by SH.
jack middleton
138. Jonathan Levy

Great minds think alike! :)
jack middleton
139. Jonathan Levy

I'm for the serial numbers, but with a twist: Maybe if you swore an oath on rod X, you can only be unbound using rod X. That would give a very good reason to have serial numbers. After all, there are lots of ter'angreal, and doubtless many of them were mass-produced, but we haven't seen any other serial numbers.
Tina Pierce
140. scissorrunner
Tektonica @113
After the 7-layer, you can rest in the hot tub and the bubbles will hide all.


Lannis - super awesome

as far as the numbers on the oath rods - I belong to the "they has lots of the during the AOL & had 'em serialized" . Maybe just for inventory, maybe for strength, maybe for types of binding used......

Galina's fate, while kinda severe, is really what can be expected of someone who fails the DO. Thevera? scares me to pieces! Is she DF or just a sadistic witch? (or am I repeating myself there?)

and I've got a great recipe for some super soft rolls to go with Tektonica's ribs for the pot-luck at the bunker Friday.

and on one really weird note: I was traveling last week & saw "breakfast" on a poster, but read it as "balefire" - "super" became "Sulin" - "Red Roof Inn" was "roofmistress", it went on all weekend!!!! My (non WOT reading) son said I was reading to much.
(I told him he didn't read enough)
Rob Munnelly
141. RobMRobM
Hi all - been away at a conference on beautiful Cape Cod, MA. A few quick thoughts:

- Lannis - congrats. Will have to let us know your Delta Tau Chi pledge name that makes it into ToM so we can see you and wave.
- Have no comments on the first chapter, other than to express curiousity how the Shaido can fall off the Aiel honor wagon so completely in so short of a time and whether RJ was trying to make a broader point about Randland or RL society. Or did Fain hang out with them for a time in an unpublished section of the story....?
- I love Graendel in the second chapter - it highlights why she (and Mori) are the only two competent Foresaken. Plays it cool with SH, is able to compel Moggy and Cyndane, etc. Yes, this chapter does seal the deal for me that she killed Asmo. My only question is - if she is close enough to have perceived Cyndane's strength, shouldn't Cyndane have been able to learn that Greandel had acquired an angreal?

jack middleton
142. chaplainchris
@106 JanDSedai - sounds good. You can cater all my parties.

@62 wawen - Binders - I think they're serial numbers. Since they were used to punish criminals, and since they're so open to abuse, I'm sure they were numbered and kept track of very carefully. Like policemen with their guns, but more so.

@various re: Sevanna and her control over the Shaido. Part comes b/c she controlled Couladin and now "speaks for the chief;" part is her Wise One thing. Since the revelation that WOs rank purely as equals, which in essence means by strength of will (?) then by custom she's as high ranking as any Wise One she can face down. And while nobody's as scared of her as Therava, she's pretty much the only one not intimidated by Therava.

Anyway, point being, one of the reasons she has authority over the Shaido is because she says she does. WOs can apparently do stuff like that. Which makes me wonder if their way is really more practical than the AS way? *ducks*

Agreed w/Amalisa that Graendal in this scene is smart and self-possessed. She's one of the most competent of the Forsaken - not at all my impression in the early books - and I too am sad we didn't see her final scene. Otoh, Rand's thoughtful acknowledgement of the only way to defeat a smarter foe gave Graendal her due; and the horror of balefiring her hideout was a sufficiently powerful scene for me to be ok with it.

Re: Cadsuane - she needs to eat more cookies.

Oh ok, more seriously. Re: the embroidered seal, I don't think that connects to the seals on the Dark One's prison. I've always interpreted it as uncertainty about the Last Battle and who would win - filtered through the AS-centric world view, that sees the survival of AS/White Tower as equivalent to the survival of the world. IOW, will Rand save the world/AS, or will the DO break free, shattering the AS/world? She intends him to win and hold it all together, but who can say if he will?

Re: credit where credit is due, Cadsuane, not any of Rand's friends, though of getting Tam. 2 pts. Not only was this good thinking, it was nice wish fulfillment for pretty much all of this who've been waiting 10 books to see Rand and Tam together again. And it did result in Rand's apotheosis, so give Cads that credit.

_But_, Cadsuane wasn't trying to *help* Rand - who's crazy, dangerous, and badly hurt - by getting Tam, she was trying to manipulate/control* Rand by getting Tam. (Not in an evil-I-serve-darkness way, just in the normal-I'm-with-the-Light-and-know-better-than-everyone-else kinda way that all our characters have.) Rather than trust to Rand and Tam's familial bond, she tried to manipulate/control Tam's behavior with her disastrous "script" for their talk. And in so doing, she messed up the warm/fuzzy reunion we wanted. Again, credit where credit is due - this approach nearly got the world toasted. -50 points.

Cads deserves both praise and blame. Those who think that she was deliberately pushing Rand to the edge? I don't see any textual support for that, don't buy it, and think it would'be been an insane tactic had she tried it. Yes, she's been using Sorilea's suggested tactic of steering Rand by indirection; but there are limits.

(Question: how do you folks see any fundamental differences in honesty/decency between Moiraine's approach - yield, give honest advice but show humility and accept it when Rand disagrees - and Cads/Sorilea's approach - be unyielding, prideful, and give dishonest advice hoping to push Rand in the opposite direction? Obviously Moiraine's approach was more effective, and required more self-awareness and humility, but is it any less manipulative?)

No, Alanna didn't try anything on Cads. Cadsuane would've seen the flows. The point of that part of the scene is that Cadsuane's threat and reputation is enough dissuade even somebody as hotheaded as Alanna.

Finally, Cads has inadvertently taught Rand some stuff by getting Tam to him, and he didn't like it. And he could teach that to the Ashaman - at least, teach them/treat them like people instead of like weapons. But first he'd have to talk to some of them and deal with Taim. Anyway, we know that there's more to teach.

I like Sorilea, and usually like Cads, though like Leigh I sometimes don't get her tactics. The thing I hate about her is calling Rand and all the men "boy." I get that it's a Far Madding thing, but Verin got over it. It's too reminscent (intentionally, I'm sure - nice work riling me up, RJ) of the way black men were often called "boy" by racists in the U.S.
Jacy Clark
143. Amalisa
@Sulin - I'm also in the Aiel Waste aka Texas, and it's more humid than usual here. I'm going to have to go find Sammael's "air exchanger", since he won't be needing it now! :D

@BenM - Yes, I agree. Selfishness is a key requirement. If someone is looking out for Numero Uno (with apologies to everyone's favorite Shienaran), then they'll be far more susceptible to extravagant promises of power and immortality and the like. Which seem to be the DO's coin of choice...

Oooohhhh... potluck in the bunker on Friday!! *starts digging through cookbooks*
Ron Garrison
144. Man-0-Manetheran
Texas: I'll always remember a comment from a Houston city councilperson: "Houston's a great place to live...now that we have it all indoors."

And Amalisa, Graendal took Sammael's air exchanger. Unfortunately it was in her palace during TGS. :-(

BenM: Selfishness. I believe Moridin mentioned that as the way the DO controlled his Chosen. Or was it RJ who said that?
Karen Jacobs
145. KJacobs
Tek@134: "Or something Min knows will trigger a memory for Cads."
Even more satisfying would be for Cads to say something that would trigger an 'AHA' moment for Min re Fel's notes. That would definitely be MOA!
jack middleton
146. chaplainchris
Rob @ 141 - "if is close enough to have perceived Cyndane's strength, shouldn't Cyndane have been able to learn that Greandel had acquired an angreal?"

I'd have thought so - I always thought, when in use, angreal would glow with the Power just like people do - but remember Cyndane vs. Alivia in WH. Cyn thinks Ali *must* have an angreal b/c of how much power she's holding. Apparently, she can't *see* it, and must deduce it.

Back to Graendal vs. Cyndane - Graendal iirc is only drawing lightly through the ring, and not using her full strength. She's pulling through the ring *in case* she needs the boost, but not accessing it yet. Cyndane would need to see Graendal holding more than her full power to notice the angreal. I think.

@various re: potluck. Sounds *beyond* awesome. I was just gonna bring cups or plates, but if all you folks are bringing stuff, I will step up. So: sausage balls, my (in)famous cheesy potato casserole, or peanut butter icebox pie? (Silly rabbit - all three!)
Maiane Bakroeva
147. Isilel
Sorilea being more liked than Cadsuane? I suspect that it is because she doesn't argue with Rand on-screen too much.
But as a result he doesn't consult with her either - as he should, being an Aiel chief.

It is a bit exasperating that Rand didn't learn even as much as Egwene or Elayne about the only nation that follows him whole-heartedly. I know, I know it is so he wouldn't feel so bad about destroying them, but IMHO he still has a lot of toh towards them. Oh, and BTW, nothing says that Sorilea is honor-bound to obey Rand's instructions re: Min (Cara'carn is not a king), although it is as always disappointing that a supposedly strong female leader resorts to corporal punishment.

Generally, speaking of honesty or dishonesty of trying to steer Rand, he himself is the problem. He is unable to hear out a woman's argument and consider it on it's own merits. So...
Alice Arneson
148. Wetlandernw
Selfishness. I believe Moridin mentioned that as the way the DO controlled his Chosen. Or was it RJ who said that? It was Verin in TGS.

KJacobs @145 - That's always been my theory; something in a Cadsuane/Min conversation would make sense out of something she (Min) read in one of Fel's books or his notes. I don't think it will be related to the "what Cadsuane must teach Rand and the Asha'man" though.
Karen Jacobs
149. KJacobs

You're more than welcome to join blocksmith, RMRM, and myself in the IfYouDontLikeTheWeatherJustWaitAFewMinutesSeptofTheMassachusettsAiel :) Plenty of lovely beaches on the South Shore where we can set up the Summer Annex Bunker!
Karen Jacobs
150. KJacobs
Lannis - Congrats! Beyond awesome :)

MaerlynsRose - A belated welcome! Very cool name!
Sam Mickel
151. Samadai
So it is not the Verin Pov through the portal stones but here is another fiction fiction

Citizens fled as the gateway opened, cutting in two the unfortunate man standing there. Jaric stepped through the gateway and looked around. I am home, he thought to himself.
Jaric moved down the street and saw all the people fleeing before him. When did Tzora fall to darkfriends? He thought, I will kill them all and if one of the forsaken is here I will rip them apart. Jaric pulled in Saidin and wove Fire and Earth and spun it towards the darkfriends. Some people erupted into flames and were consumed, others had time to start running as buildings came crashing down on top of them. Jaric cursed silently to himself as he walked through the city. How dare they take over my home, where are the rest of my brothers and sisters and why didn’t they stop this.
Jaric continued walking down the street killing everyone he saw. Up ahead of him three sisters stepped out on the street. “Jaric” the lead sister screamed. “What are you doing?”
“I am killing all the darkfriends, Merinda. Tzora has been lost to the shadow, help me”
“Listen to me Jaric.” “These are regular citizens; no one is a friend of the dark here.” “Come with us Jaric, you are confused, let us help you.”
“I have to stop them Merinda, Please help me.”
“Okay Jaric, we will help you.” “Come join our circle and I will guide the flows and help you.”
Jaric stared at Merinda for a moment. “You won’t trap me so easy Merinda, I can see you have gone over to the shadow.” Jaric pulled in as much Saidin as he could through the an’greal in his coat as he felt goosebumps. “Trying to shield me, you are all darkfriends.” He wove fire and earth as the ground erupted beneath them, engulfing them in flames.
Jaric walked on into the town center, killing everyone he saw. As he glanced around the city, he noticed people trying to flee. He sent lightning bolts to take down the Sho Wings that were escaping. He blew rings of fire at the Jo’cars, sent slivers of Gateways flying towards the running people. I will kill them all and save my home, He thought.
As he stood there killing, Dai’shain came into the center with him, hundreds and then thousands of them. Curiously, he watched them as they linked arms.
Aiel aren’t friends of the dark, I would sooner believe Lews was a Forsaken than that, Jaric thought. Everyone is a darkfriend, no one is left alive to help you now, he thought as he sent a wave of flames at the Aiel. The rest just kept singing and closing ranks as the others died. There is Chano, he has served my house for thirty years, He is faithful to me, I can’t kill him.
He is obviously fallen to the shadow, as flames erupted around Chano.
The Aiel were singing out loud to him, telling him all the great things he has done.
You are the great Jaric Mondoran, you defeated the Forsaken Rahvin at the battle of Shi’san, you stopped the slaughter of the people in He’ron.
Jaric listened to them singing as he killed them, part of him was screaming to stop, they are Dai’shan, they are peaceful and loving. Over that small voice he screamed, destroy them all, they’re corrupted by the Dark One. Jaric just kept spinning weaves, death to all and everything.
Jaric stopped weaving as he noticed only one Aiel left alive. The little voice in his head screamed at him. Stop it they are Dai’shan, you are killing them all.
They are all Darkfriends, they need to die.
They are our friends and family, what you are doing is wrong.
I must kill any that stand in my way.
Jaric sat there quietly struggling with himself, beginning the weave that would kill the last one. He sat there and argued back and forth with himself as the Dai’shan sang to him.
The sun had finally begun to set as Jaric wove fire and burnt the man up.
Jaric looked around at the deserted city in disgust and contempt.
This isn’t my home; it has been corrupted by the Dark One. As he walked out of town, he drew deeply on Saidin. He wove earth and crushed everything in sight, as it all settled; fire sprang up around him and melted everything as far as the eye could see.
As he walked on out of Tzora, he saw Haindar walking towards him.
“Jaric I see you had to do the same thing to your hometown, Vash’an was corrupted by the Dark one as well”
“What should we do Haindar?” Jaric asked. “Where should we go?”
“ I have heard that Paaran Disen has also fallen to the shadow, I think we should go there next”
“Let’s go looking for some of the companions and then we can finish this once and for all”
Jaric opened a gateway and as he stepped through, the voice in his head kept screaming
Tricia Irish
152. Tektonica
Oh Sam....you picked a dark moment. Maybe you should write the prequel...the AOL book. Well done. Vivid. Thanks....

And now for the Verin POV........
Bonnie Andrews
153. misfortuona
Okay, not the Verin POV. But I'll forgive you because I'm too busy getting over the shivers that went down my spine when Jaric faced the Aeil.

Very cool Sam. Thank you for this.

Mis-wondering where Tzora was.
Lucas Vollmer
155. aspeo
Samadai@151 That gave me goosebumps! Great job!
Hugh Arai
156. HArai

Generally, speaking of honesty or dishonesty of trying to steer Rand, he himself is the problem. He is unable to hear out a woman's argument and consider it on it's own merits. So...

Generally,Isilel is unable to post about the Wheel of Time without complaining about something. Aren't sweeping blanket statements fun?

Seriously though, can I ask for some examples of a time a woman clearly outlines an argument to Rand without witholding any information or motive and Rand denies the argument solely because it's a woman advancing the argument? Because I'm coming up blank myself.

Samadai@151: Cool.
Rob Munnelly
157. RobMRobM
@149. Sunday was beautiful on Cape Cod. Simply gorgeous. Who needs other places. Note, FYI, that Forkroot is an alumni of the Massachusetts Aiel but bailed out to go to the far-sunnier southwest.
James Jones
158. jamesedjones
156 HArai
Seriously though, can I ask for some examples of a time a woman clearly outlines an argument to Rand without witholding any information or motive and Rand denies the argument solely because it's a woman advancing the argument?
OK, I'll try. But we can't count Min, Elayne, or Aviendha. 'Cause, you know... we're like that.

You're right. Sweeping, blanket statements are fun. :D
Karen Jacobs
159. KJacobs
@157: Ah! I knew I was missing someone, but couldn't remember who - Thanks for the catch!
Maiane Bakroeva
160. Isilel
Chaplainchris @142:

The thing I hate about her is calling Rand and all the men "boy."

And yet, when Thom calls our protagonists girls and boys, nobody is offended. Cadsuane is very old - everybody is boy/girl to her.

Not that I like her - when she first appeared, I was impatiently waiting for Moiraine's return, for one thing, and she felt like an iterloper.

But also - as a quintessential AS, Cadsuane falls short. She as bulldozing and abrasive as the rest of them were since book 6.
She only leads among the AS because of her strength in OP. I'd have expected a truly legendary AS to be able to buckle the stupid OP-strength hierarchy. That would have immediately proved to me that she was worthy of respect.
And what about "a sister must wear many faces in the world"? Oh, Verin. Oh, the AS of the early books...

And speaking of Far Madding - didn't it produce 2 of the more notorious False Dragons?
Must be an interesting place - I have wondered if the AS who have created the ter'angreal didn't place their children, those who were too young to channel, in it's sphere of influence. After all, a sparker would never manifest if they never left the city and never die from channeling sickness or madness. Somebody should convince the citizens to get out and get tested - I wager they'll find tons of strong channelers there.

Re: Sevanna, blackmail, sure. Of course, she was involved, too. But murder of Desaine blazed the trail, I'd think, and when Sevanna became as disastrous as she did... Also, I thought that the Aiel generally ranked their hierarchy on ji, and there is no way that Sevanna could have accumulated a lot of that, LOL, wife of a chief or no.

P.S. - HArai, are you suggesting than the many men that Rand consults with don't have hidden motives and don't hold back information? So, why should it stop Rand from consulting with women ditto? Also, I see a lot of people here complaining about certain aspect of the series ;).
Sharon E.
161. Sulin
Sam@151- That gave me shivers. Very nicely done!

KJacobs- I'll get a WO to make me a gateway shortly! Anything to escape this humidity. I come bearing homemade pico de gallo and tortilla chips. :)

If anyone's interested, I've posted my first WoT artwork over on DM. http://www.dragonmount.com/Gallery/displayimage.php?album=lastup&cat=0&pos=0

Blanket statements FTW!
162. Freelancer

Thank you for bringing up Rand being unable to channel had he been raised in Far Madding. I meant to answer that question from someone earlier, but forgot. Cadsuane muses that he would have been easier to "guide" if he had been raised in Far Madding, but that it would have meant another sort of disaster. The disaster would have been Rand dying because he couldn't channel and couldn't learn to.

blindillusion@124 & others previous

I don't for a moment believe that the "reactions" of Cynfear and Moghedien at Graendal's place is a result of Moridin playing with their mindtraps. They are tussling with the Power. Inverted, of course, so that each cannot block the other's assault, with the incidental result that Graendal cannot see nor sense the weaves either, only the results. I mean, consider the sequence:
“You make a mistake, Graendal.” A chilly smile barely curved Cyndane’s full lips; she was enjoying this. “I lead between us. Moghedien is in a bad odor with Moridin for her recent mistakes.”

Wrapping her arms around herself, Moghedien shot the silver-haired little woman a scowl as good as any spoken confirmation. Suddenly Cyndane’s big eyes opened even wider, and she gasped, shuddering.

Moghedien’s glare turned malicious. “You lead for the moment,” she sneered. “Your place in his eyes is not far better than mine.” And then she gave a start and shivered, biting her lip.

Verbal swipe from Cyndane; Power swipe from Moghedien. Verbal swipe from Moghedien; Power swipe from Cyndane. It's a catfight, plain and simple. The reason it doesn't escalate is that they both know how close to the edge they are already walking, and they have a task to perform. Plus, while they both defend their pride, they don't really to get into a true throwdown in front of Graendal. As it is, the moment they lose any control they get whipped by her.


It's not tequilla (sic), it's ta-kill-ya.

Rand Al'Todd@130

Hmm, so you're one of those who thinks Norla is really Latra Posae? Well, bad news, I don't believe that the Tower of Ghenjei was reachable from the world of our story during the Age of Legends, employing the limits on the timeframe of Mat's inserted memories.

Also, the AOL item mentioned where the Borderland rulers meet is not a tower. It is a spire, and I don't believe the description allows for it to be large enough to have an interior which would fit a single body, much less many.
Bonnie Andrews
163. misfortuona
This is the first time I've seen anyone discuss hiding sparkers in Far Madding. Interesting idea, but you would think that someone would have done exactly as you suggest and have the children taken out of the range of the ter'angreal for testing.

Were Cads and Verin found within the city? What about the male chanellers?

Barry T
164. blindillusion

Raolin Darksbane was born in Aren Mador. Yurian Stonebow was born in Fel Moreina.

Past names of the city.
Maiane Bakroeva
165. Isilel
Freelancer @162:

Thank you for bringing up Rand being unable to channel had he been raised in Far Madding

Raoline Darksbane and Yurian Stonebow beg to differ ;).

Misfortuona @163:

I thought that all 3 of known Far Madding AS were discovered after they left. Verin thought something about curiosity leading to her becoming AS, IIRC.
jack middleton
166. chaplainchris
@162 Freelancer - nada. Taveren stuff would've gotten Rand out of Far Madding no matter what. What Cads means is that Rand would've been easier to guide if from Far Madding b/c Far Madding men obediently follow women. Thus, he'dve taken her direction more easily. And the disaster of its own - he'dve taken direction from other women more easily too. Imagine Far-Madding-Rand trying to say no to Lanfear!

And Moggy and Cyndy's reactions are just like other reactions we've seen when Ishydin plays with his necklace. And the idea of Moggy and Cyndy OPing each other when dealing w/Graendal is silly. Plus the whole uncertainty of whether Graendal has inverted traps around.

Isilel @ 160 - I suppose I do partially have a double standard for Cadsuane and Thom. Part of that is the feel - Thom *looks* old (in my head), white hair and beard and leathery cheeks and all. And he half-raised Elayne, so of course sees her and her friends as kids. Cadsuane's way older, but being all ageless I don't envision her as old...so the demeaning of the young 'uns seems...um, demeaning.

Though you've just made me sad/mad at myself to realize that while I'm irritated when Cadsuane calls Nynaeve "girl", I'm not *as* irritated as when she calls Rand "boy." (Part of that, though, is knowing AS call all intiates "child", esp. initiates that they don't consider sisters yet.)

Part of it, though, is that those moments from Thom just don't stick out to me as much because Thom is, in general, not a person who dis-respects and demeans those he deals with. When he uses the agist terms, I don't feel that he's doing it to belittle; I think it's natural to him because he's an old guy and talks that way.

For Cadsuane, I don't think it has much to do with age - as we've seen, people from Far Madding tend to refer to men as boys generally. It's not an age thing, it's a "keep 'em in their subservient place" thing - which is where I see the parallels to racism. White southern men didn't call black men "boy" because of any age difference; they did it belittlingly. Cads *is* old, but I think she does it to intimidate/demean.

Still, in partial Cads defense, she may be a bulldozer, but she does know a lot and without her in WH, Rand would've stayed locked in a cell or been killed by Forsaken while cleansing the Source.
Andrew Belmont
167. rosetintdworld
Freelancer @162: See Aran'gar's POV in Knife of Dreams, where she sees Cyndane and Moghedien shudder similarly and then clues in that they are on mindtraps: "It seemed once she disposed of Moridin that she would have Moghedien and the girl on leashes as well." To say nothing of the comparison to Rahvin's Tea Party in FOH; there, the Forsaken are cautiously weaving trap after trap as precautions, debating what the others might be weaving, preparing gateways in case Lanfear goes psycho and unleashes balefire... The idea that two Forsaken are flicking each other with flows of Air, like sullen novices, seems very out of character to me.
Bonnie Andrews
168. misfortuona
Re Far Madding as a hide out for sparkers.

It seems to me that bringing down those ter'angreal would have been one of the highest priorities within the tower, unless they were purposely leaving a channelers gene pool. Does anyone know how long the agreal have been in Far Madding? Since right after the Breaking, right?

Yep The pattern would have drawn Rand out of Far Madding before he was needed and with enough time to learn what he needed to know.

Mis-now you’ve gone and got me thinking
Thomas Keith
169. insectoid
Lannis: Congrats on getting your name immortalized in the WoTiverse! That is totally awesome. :)

Sub @112:
As far as Min being switched... er... did anyone take pictures:P
LOL!! Naughty woofer! ;)

Blind @124:
Hmm, sequence involving Sevanna, Therava, Galina and Cadsuane. All that’s needed is for Katerine to be there and I’d be going slightly bugshit reading through this.
Hey, watch what you say about bugshit... Also, I just knew you'd come up with 13. ;)

Sulin @136: I see you, Sulin, and love the tagline!

Jonathan Levy @139: I like your theory... it's sort of like how a lock can only be opened by the key that goes to it.

Sam @151: ::shivers:: Well done!

Sulin @161: Great drawing!!

Free @162: Re: Moggy and Cyn... Nice analysis! It makes sense now that I think about it; however, rosetintdworld @167 does have a point.

Maiane Bakroeva
170. Isilel
Chaplainchris @166:

White southern men didn't call black men "boy" because of any age difference; they did it belittlingly.

Perhaps, but Cadsuane also calls women "girls" and what's more Sorilea call Kiruna "girl" right in this chapter and Kiruna is much older than Rand. So...
Tina Pierce
171. scissorrunner
super goosebumpy
what a sad, scary POV from the Breaking.......
Roger Powell
172. forkroot
RobM to the 2nd power
I am an alumnus, except when I refer to myself using the "royal we".

With that said, I fully agree that Cape Cod can truly be a slice of heaven in late May and early June. It was pretty much a given that we'd camp there during that time of the season (in my formative years), while we waited for the black flies to dissipate in the New Hampshire woods.

I'll be back in the old stomping grounds this September (staying at the Custom House, how cool is that?).

First though, I'll be haunting BillinHI on west Oahu in early July.
Rob Munnelly
173. RobMRobM
Fork @172. Alumni, alumnus - I'm digging out at work after a conference, please give me some slack.

Free@162. I'm in the mindtrap camp, sorry. I don't see them as silly enough to ignore a dangerous adversary like Graendel to snap towels at each others' behinds. Your theory does raise the interesting issue of how much Mori can access the thoughts of the mindtrap victims or otherwise snoop at events - the mindtrap stroking was remarkably well timed so it implies snooping through the mindtrap or otherwise (such as through SH). If that problem can't be figured out, I might end up moving back in your direction.

Matthew Smith
174. blocksmith

Nice SSPU reference. My in-laws stay at the Custom House often and truly enjoy it. Great locale and amazing architecture.


You may be right but I always interpreted it as Moridin reminding them both who was really in charge.


Very nice fan art at DM. I couldn't draw that well with Micheangelo's eyes and DaVinci pushing my hand.
Tess Laird
175. thewindrose
blocksmith - Sulin is the artist

Nice work Sulin! And we get a story from Samadai - a very dark time indeed. Nice tie ins to the characters of that time!

Maybe Moridin was there, either in fancloth or using the TP. I could see him wanting to see how it played out. And then getting angry at Cyndane and Moghedein with their petty fighting, and stroking their mindtraps.

Bonnie Andrews
176. misfortuona
Er Blocksmith@174, maybe Lannis has some art I'm not aware of, but I think you meant Sulin.


Edit for thewindrose got there first
Roger Powell
177. forkroot
Maybe Moridin was there, either in fancloth or using the TP. I could see him wanting to see how it played out. And then getting angry at Cyndane and Moghedein with their petty fighting, and stroking their mindtraps.
Actually that is a great explanation. I'll sign on as a supporter of that idea.


I was thinking more of the Queen of England, not SSPU - had to google that. Guess I'm too old.
jack middleton
179. MaerlynsRose
Tektonica@111: Aw, thanks for the nice words about my ramblings! Oh, and it's not a stretch at all with the myth you pulled up...good find!

Just some thoughts on the Sorilea vs. Cadsuane debate. I DO like Sorilea and am definitely NOT a fan of Cads, and I think the difference to me is that Sorilea seems a little more...erm, honest, in her own way. She's hard, true, but she isn't as jarringly disrespectful with Rand. When I read Cads, particularly her POV, it's almost as if she goes out of her way to be as abrasive as possible, and in true AS fashion, never explains herself or tries to talk to Rand as an equal. Of course, that could be her upbringing too. But Sorilea is Sorilea with everyone, and just refuses to change her less than cuddly personality quirks for the likes of Rand.

And on a lighter note: I'm from Kentucky, and we've just had a very controversial primary here, in which the Republican party elected a Tea Partier to run in the fall. His name? Rand Paul...son of Ron Paul. Rand as a senator...:shudders:: XD
Alice Arneson
180. Wetlandernw
Isilel @160 - I'm confused at what you mean by:
I'd have expected a truly legendary AS to be able to buckle the stupid OP-strength hierarchy. That would have immediately proved to me that she was worthy of respect.
Particularly "buckle." If you mean that she should buck the system as in refuse to submit, how? She's pretty much at the top, so she's not called on to submit to much of anything except (to some extent) the Amyrlin, the Hall and the head of her Ajah, which have nothing to do with the "stupid OP-strength hierarchy" anyway. If you mean buckle as in try to topple it, why? The White Tower is enough of a mess right now, and she's got more important fish to fry. If some other definition, please explain. I'm confused.

@many - As far as I can see, Cadsuane pretty much ignores the hierarchy anyway, except when she can make use of it for her own purposes. In this chapter, for example, Cadsuane, Daigian and Kumira make deliberate use of the other AS's blind acceptance of the system, as Daigian and Kumira go off with the other three to play at "low-Power rug please walk all over me" while picking up all the intel available from them. (Kumira apparently has an eidetic memory, and Daigian is a master logician.) The fact that Kumira and Daigian are at the bottom of the AS ladder doesn't stop Cadsuane from respecting them far more than the others who stand so much higher.

I suspect she would agree that it's a stupid system when followed so mindlessly, but she has no desire to go reorganize the White Tower power structures. Let Egwene do that, if she wants; right now, Tarmon Gai'don is coming and the Dragon Reborn is not ready for it. Who cares about the stupid AS hierarchy right now?

(Well, obviously we do, but then we've spent 20 years reading something that, for these people, has been happening in a matter of months.)

On an only loosely related note, I liked Sorilea's comment on Kiruna, that she needs to realize that she owns her pride, rather than her pride owning her. I think one of the reasons Sorilea and Cadsuane have "legend" status among their respective peers is, in part, due to their ability to see beyond the surface to the individual strengths and weaknesses of the people with whom they associate. Combine that with a certain force of will, throw in a good dollop of self-assurance, and you end up with someone who pretty much can and will take charge of any situation they choose. If you add a dash of pick-your-battles-and-ignore-the-rest, you have someone who almost always wins. Not that they necessarily had the best or only strategy, but all the second-guessing in the world proves nothing when you've already won. Just a thought.
181. Ouroboros
Lots to reply to so sorry for the upcoming wall.

Lsana @ 39: There's something about thee idea of "Forsaken Bob" that cracks me up. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the Forsaken. Mesaana, Demandred, Moghedien, Semirhage, and . . . Bob.

Master_Asmodean @ 45: It would be about 100 volumes in Braille by now. Reading the books with a screen-reader is actually not that bad, and it takes a lot less time than the audiobooks. That said, the audiobooks are more fun. Is it just me or did Michael Kramer sound about 30 years older in TGS. Maybe the engineers were having a bad day.

aspeo @ 46: Sevanna is a con artist. She jumped the ranks by marrying the chief, which makes her a roof mistress rather than a Wise One. After the chief died she speaks in his name, so she's really a regent. No man has gone to Rhuidean since then and she's making efforts to delay that so she still holds the position. Maybe she's Cersei Lannister in disguise.

I don't think Alanna tried anything since Cadsuane didn't see any weaves. She may have inverted or reversed them but I don't think she knows that trick yet.

forkroot @ 47: I was speaking of causality rather than credit. We could debate how this equates to success but Cadsuane sent Tam in and that was the primary cause of Rand learning laughter and tears. Whether Cadsuane should be applauded for the outcome is a different question. Granted, she could have given Tam a better pre-mission briefing; explaining the situation and leaving it up to his judgement.

Jelsel @ 51: AFAIK Cadsuane and Nynaeve both have a ter'angreal that unravels flows. It looks like Cadsuane's works in the same way as Mat's because it goes cold when someone nearby embraces Saidar, unless she has several whose net affect is the same.

Freelancer @ 53: Okay, bad wording. I'm not viewing it as a coin toss. I'm certain that she wants to break the seals and that's why I'm putting all my money on it. The reasoning is three-fold.
1. The main image is surrounded by flowers, nettles and thorny briars; she knows she is making a dangerous choice.
2. She has already demonstrated skill in discerning hither to unknown things from scholarly works, many of them being the same as those that Min is reading.
3. At this point everyone fighting the shadow believes that the seals need to be held together, however, our attention is deliberately being drawn to Cadsuane's intensions. There's no point in doing this if they're the same as everyone else’s and there's no point in making a double bluff.

RE: "That she would have more than considered it removes from her any allowance to chastise or punish Alanna."

But she is only considering it - "might" is not "would". Moreover, her thoughts make it clear that she is revolted by the notion, so there are reasons to think that she would not have done it even if she has considered it. Are we playing the thought police? She's one of the only people who really sees the danger in what Rand is becoming and she is desperate to stop it. If someone asked you under these circumstances whether you would cross the line and do the unthinkable, could you really say that you would not at the very least consider it given what's at stake. That's all she's doing here. Of course, if there's a point I've missed in which she says outright that she would have bonded Rand then I'll reconsider, but I can't think of any.

Jonathan Levy @ 54: Rand was already off his rocker, that was the whole point, and they had to act quickly, besides, there were plenty of other people in on the plan. You can say that the plan went wrong but not that it was the incompetent act of one woman. By this point Rand was paranoid and nearly psychotic, so anybody attempting what Tam was would have been walking on thin ice no matter how they were prepared.

wawwen @ 62: I just take them as serial numbers. 111 binders isn't that big a number given that 3% of the worlds population could channel; about 200 million if there population equalled ours. It could be that every court had a binder.

Amalisa @ 64: *nods in agreement*

gagecreedlives @ 68 and forkroot @ 76: Uncle Occam says that He With Too Many Names (currently Moridin) sent them on there way, counted to 200 and then gave the traps a little tickle as a friendly reminder to stay on mission. Of course, some kind of psychic connection is possible as well.

Lannis @ 81: Congrats and make sure you survive TG.

forkroot @ 95: "Victor Hugo". *shudders* Just don't start singing it!

MaerlynsRose @ 100: Welcome.

Wetlandernw @ 107: I wonder if non-channelers were bound as well. I remember a "binding chair" being mentioned; perhaps that's what the crystal chair they found in Rhuidean is. It may even be related to the infamous crystal throne.

Tektonica @ 122: Nice find. I'll talk more about allegories after I've had some sleep.

FWIW, it's warming up in London too, though English whether is about as reliable as an Aes Sedai with an oath to tell the truth. Now if only I could find something to take away the taste in the air - chewy, I call it monoxide surprise.

I'll bring real ale and chocolate brownies on Friday.
Hugh Arai
182. HArai

P.S. - HArai, are you suggesting than the many men that Rand consults with don't have hidden motives and don't hold back information? So, why should it stop Rand from consulting with women ditto? Also, I see a lot of people here complaining about certain aspect of the series ;).

I'm suggesting he doesn't listen to the arguments of the many men who have hidden motives and hold back information any more than he does the women. He doesn't spend much time listening to the High Lords of Tear over Berelain for instance. You made the claim he won't listen to women's arguments because they are women. Again, point out where he listens to men just because they're men and doesn't listen to women just because they're women. I don't think you'll find many examples. You'll find a ton of examples where he doesn't listen to someone that is busy trying to make him do what they want without explanation. And those people unfortunately number more women than men.

ETA: And while plenty of people complain about plenty of things in WoT, I'm sure I can find at least one post of yours where you don't complain :)
Scott Terrio
183. Renegade248
Sorry if this is off topic for these chapters, but I just found something interesting on another WOT site.

Looks like their will be a reunion of some sort in ToM.

Tamylin over on the theoryland forums posed this on what book 13 will include, which is based off a Brandon signing at one of his book tours.


Here is the key section:

"Book 13 will have the opposite, with 3-4 chapters each for Egwene and Rand, "toward the end". Brandon kept those for book 13 to avoid spoiling in TGS the climax of book 13, which will mark the reunion of all the main story lines at some location, and launch TG. So in book 13 we will have the residual Rand/Egwene chapters that specifically build up to the reunion."

All i can say is YIPPEE!! Finally a reunion of the main cast. Hopefully they will all talk to each other for a change.
Tricia Irish
184. Tektonica
Mis@176: LOL. Rock on sister!

Edit; Addition....

Ouroboros@181: Smithwicks, please. I know, it's Irish, but yum. Thanks!
jack middleton
185. Looking Glass
chaplainchris@142: When Moiraine agrees to obey him "like one of the maidens" in TFoH, she also actually makes a flat-out promise not to try manipulating him. In those words. Clearly there's a little leeway there, enough to let Rand think she's dead, but still she seems to be committed to being an advisor rather than the one making the decisions. Cadsuane, by contrast, is clearly of the "I'll let him call me an advisor, but if he chooses not to follow my advice I'll find a way to make him" school.

Isilel@160: Yes, the guys Rand consults regularly are less manipulative than the women (on the whole). That's probably in part uneven character trait distribution by RJ, but certainly a big part of it is that Rand is actually way less likely to put up with sneaky, manipulative guys than with similar women. To the point that he's quite willing to use actual, physical violence on them until they get the point. Also, he's waaay more willing to listen to Min, or even Nynaeve, than to Cadsuane or the Wise Ones. And I wouldn't say that Berelain gets any less respect from Rand than Rhuarc or Bashere.
jack middleton
186. chaplainchris
Isilel @ 170 - good pts all. I will try, therefore, to be a little less excessively annoyed when someone belittles Rand, and a little more excessively annoyed when they belittle Nynaeve/Kiruna/et al. :)

(But Kiruna's an Apprentice!)

@179 Maerlyn's Rose - good thoughts on Cads/Sori. The interesting thing to me about Cadsuane and her abrasive manner is that I *don't* see her POVs as being abrasive or rude or belittling or what have you. In POVs she thinks that Nynaeve is green but has good mettle, she admires much of what Rand has done in terms of humanitarian efforts, she murmurs that he need not be afraid and she will hurt him as little as possible. That last makes lots of folks shudder, but I read it as compassion for him, knowing that being the Dragon is hardly going to be pain-free.

So in her private thoughts I often find Cadsuane to have some redeeming value. (I'm split on her thoughts re: Alanna and the bonding - partially b/c I *don't* see the Warder Bond as equivalent to rape, so I'm a little more sympathetic to the idea that an Aes Sedai facing the end of the world might bond the Dragon - which among other things would grant him heightened stamina and increase his chances! NOT sympathetic, think it's evil, but not really as bad as rape - I can't imagine anything is - so a LITTLE more sympathetic.)

Anyway, regardless of that hot topic, Cadsuane's POVs in general often make me like her more than not. She shows signs of actual regard and liking/respect for Our Heroes and their intentions and abilities. So it's always jarring (and as with Leigh, confusing) that she doesn't show them any of that.

Oh, and Rand as Senator - well, his dad was on the Village Council, so...

@183 Renegade248 - main cast reunion in next book?!? AWESOMECAKES!

*real ale on Friday - main cast reunion - cookies - um um um - good day.*
jack middleton
187. chaplainchris
@185 Looking Glass re: Moiraine - Thanks! I'd forgotten that. Moiraine's a favorite character and I'm excited as anybody to see her - but it's nice to be reminded of that and have her vindicated. Or my liking for her vindicated.

Like some other characters, she's willing to do anything for her mission - unlike some others, she gets that this might actually mean agreeing not to be in charge.

And re: your point with Isilel and Rand's attitudes toward guys and gals - Rand trusts and listens to Nynaeve (and Min of course, but Nynaeve is key here) long after the point that he's begun being dismissive of the WOs, Rhuarc, etc. He's begun doubting and distrusting even somebody like Dobraine, and kinda double-crosses Ituralde. Like others, I think he's equally open - or closed - to both sexes. With guys he is quicker to yell and threaten, though, as you note.

And I'm off to bed, so no more interesting comments for the next 12 hours! Yes, I'm looking at *you*!
188. Freelancer

First, look again at what I quoted. They sneer at each other like mean girls in junior high. They aren't above snapping towels at each other's backsides. That they are dealing with Graendal is the reason they don't do more, though they clearly want to. Second, they are obviously under Shaidar Haran's guidance at this point, and we have yet to get a scene where it and Moridin are both present. The idea of a hidden Moridin in the room slips into that area of crafting a version of the scene which isn't written and isn't likely, just to fit a concept one has already embraced. In this case, even less plausible than "Gawyn was Compelled". Do you suppose Moridin would have felt the need to remain invisible while stroking their mindtraps? No chance. He'd do it in Graendal's face, to convince her of the need to listen to him lest she share their mindtrapped state.

I understand that the description of their respective reactions is similar to when they feel that the cour'souvra is being handled, but I have to ask how it makes sense in the scene? It makes direct sense that "the new girl" is lording it over Moghedien that she's in charge, and a petulant Spider bites her, after which there is a payback. Selfish and predictable, per Verin.


For anyone who wants to look back at the monster TGS Open Spoiler Thread (not the WoT Open Discussion thread), you can't get it to open via the normal link, but last night I discovered a way in. Go to anyone's profile who has made comments on that thread (for example, birgit), go to the lower left where it says BIRGIT'S COMMENTS, select [i][b]show all[/b], then find a link from the The Wheel of Time: The Gathering Storm Review and Open Spoiler Thread!. You may have to scroll a significant distance down the comments to find it, but once you click, you're there!

I was perusing some of the things said back in October/November, and was amused at how many of them are being rehashed as we go. There were also some interesting little surprises, like finding Tektonica's first comment, back when she was in red! It seems you've been with us so much longer, Tek.


Umm, sorry?
jack middleton
189. Chaplainchris
I see nothing to apologize for
Tricia Irish
190. Tektonica

So it was October/November I finally worked up the nerve to post. I thought it was earlier, but I was probably just lurking and working up my courage. I remember the excitement the day I stumbled in here the first time and discovered
a* whole*new*world*
I was stunned. I also remember being so green I didn't know how to go gray or make italics and didn't get the IMHO acronyms. ( I still don't get all of them.) And I kept asking questions...how do I do this? that? What a pain! Thank you all for being patient and schooling me in all things cyber.
Luddite, no more!

I just hope that it doesn't feel like its been a lot longer because I'm so tedious. ;-}
I try to bring something, even if it's just ribs and martinis.

Thanks for finding that and the link into the monster thread!
Jay Dauro
191. J.Dauro
Tektonica @184
Smithwicks. My favorite.

Freelancer @188
Looking at each place I can find where we see the shivers.
Wrapping her arms around herself, Moghedien shot the silver-haired little woman a scowl as good as any spoken confirmation. Suddenly Cyndane’s big eyes opened even wider, and she gasped, shuddering.

Moghedien’s glare turned malicious. “You lead for the moment,” she sneered. “Your place in his eyes is not far better than mine.” And then she gave a start and shivered, biting her lip.

From time to time he idly stroked one of the two mindtraps that hung on plain silken cords around his neck. At his touch, the blood-red crystal of the cour'souvra pulsed, swirls moving in endless depths like the beating of a heart.

she could not leave him to babble, not when she could feel Moridin's hand caressing the our'souvra that held her soul.

Only the threat of Moridin's hands caressing her cour'souvra had driven her to Travel here at all, and she had delayed coming, prayed that it would be over before she was forced to.

So we see that Moriden has a habit of stoking the mindtraps, especially when he has sent or given instructions to the mindtrapee. I could easily see him giving the two a quick reminder of the fact that they are to be doing his bidding. I cannot see the two of them using inverted weaves to snap at each other in front of Graendal.
Andrew Belmont
192. rosetintdworld
At the risk of beating a dead horse, who says that Moridin has to be in the room to stroke their mindtraps? The timing of their reactions is a little too perfect relative to what is being said, I grant, but Jordan hardly shied away from "unbelievable" timing: having booming thunder punctuate ominous declarations, or Sea Folk porcelain falling unbroken the very second Rand thinks he can hide from being ta'veren. It happens all the time. Perfect timing hardly seems like a reason to ignore what all the rest of the evidence suggests. So while I appreciate the close reading, but I don't buy it.

Moreover, note that when Graendal warns them against triggering traps on their way out, she sees Moghedien channel immediately. If she knows it was Moghedien, then the Spider didn't mask her weaves. Do you really think that the Spider would bother to invert her weaves and avoid triggering a trap in order to pinch Lanfear's bottom, and then, when channeling is really necessary, forgo the precaution? She came into the room glowing with saidar, and masked weaves never factored into the encounter.
Sharon E.
193. Sulin
@Isectoid/Block/TWRose/- Thanks! I will be posting more art soon. :)

Ouroboros@181-Re Sevanna being "Cersei Lannister in disguise." Very true, those ladies are two peas in a pod.

Renegade@183- Great find! I am so excited for October 26. The reunion is going to be [i][b]one big[/b] MOA! *sigh, five more months*

*Mmmmm can't wait for the real ale...*
Yay for exclamation points!!!!

Alice Arneson
194. Wetlandernw
Ouroboros, Tektonica, J.Dauro... I like Boddingtons, myself. :) Anyone else?
jack middleton
195. BenM
KJ @ 149,

You all could always try joining the onlyplacewhereyoucanexperienceallfourseasonswithinthespanofadayorso sept of the northeastohioaiel
Rob Munnelly
196. RobMRobM
I'm a Guinness fan myself. Creamy and low cal to boot (it's true).

p.s. Boddington is quite good too.
craig thrift
197. gagecreedlives

I am partial to the odd drop of Guinness too. And guess who else is

hard to argue with that spokesman
Marcus W
198. toryx
Holy cow, a beer poll? That's the best poll ever! :)

I like Boddingtons a fair amount but for a light British brew like that I prefer Bishop's Finger. Old Speckled Hen is pretty good too.

Guinness is my all time favorite import, even though it doesn't even compare to what it's like in Ireland. Nectar of the Gods, I tell you.

McEwans No. 1 Champion Ale is also supremely good. I've only had it a couple of times in Scotland and I deeply regret not bringing several bottles back with me.
John Massey
199. subwoofer



John Massey
200. subwoofer
Weeeeeeee! Sometimes it's good being me:)

Guinness- the beer that eats like a meal. Flippin' widgets and all. Score me one of those and a hunk 'o cheesecake and I pity the Trolloc that crosses my path.

I'm all over the easy on a hot day stuff... and I am proudly Canadian.

Towel snapping- ahhhh- 5:01... too easy, almost like the Golden Ass- must resist temptation to comment... Gah... must make it to Friday...

diane heath
201. jadelollipop
Totally off topic but Egwene in LOC just had her dream of the Seanchan woman. I saw the comment about a reunion in TofM (YAY!!) and I saw Aviendha giving Rand a bridal wreath with Elayne and Min nodding agreement. Sort of a wedding / reception scene. Mat introducing his wife. DUN DUN DUN but to bring it back to Egwene's dream. Reaching the top could be a sign of peace/truce between Egwene and Tuon as well as Rand/Tuon

Re: Beer Poll I don't drink so abstain...but I prefer coke to Pepsi (my husband prefers Pepsi). My daughter and I also prefer Dr. Pepper :)
Karen Jacobs
202. KJacobs
Mmmmmm Guinness! Never tried the Boddingtons, but I'm very partial to Young's Double Chocolate Stout :)
craig thrift
203. gagecreedlives
Hey Sub I am pretty sure its Friday somewhere in the world. So if you need the justification to no longer resist your temptation go nuts
Noneo Yourbusiness
204. Longtimefan
I prefer my beer to be of the root kind. I also like sasparilla...in a dirty glass.

October cannot get here fast enough.

Well, I guess I can wait since there is still one more book after Towers of Midnight so there will be more waiting on the horizon.

If time sped up I would miss all of summer. That would not be fun. :)
205. Ouroboros
In keeping with the WoT numerology, here are 13 ales I am especially partial to: Ringwood Fortyniner, Jennings Sneck Lifter, Exmoor Gold, Hicks Special Draft, Abbot Ale, Adnams Broadside, Badger Tanglefoot, Bishops Finger, Fullers Honeydew, Marstons Old Empire, Old Speckled Hen, Theakstons Old Peculier, and Youngs Waggledance.

Hmm, half of those sound like extras in Lord of the Rings - which ones are riding wargs?

As you can probably tell, I've got a bit of a thing for real ale. I have a friend who moved to the states to work for NASA and they were always complaining that they could never find any good ale. You really need to drink it on tap in a pub that knows how to look after it. BTW if we're being fussy about our definitions, Guinness and Smithwicks are stouts, which are similar to ales but not quite the same. Not all English pubs sell ale but they do sell Guinness, so it's usually the ale drinkers fall back position. You can get most of the ones in my list as bottles, so there may be an online shop that delivers to the US, though it will probably be expensive. Next week we'll do tea!
Matthew Smith
206. blocksmith

My most sincere apologies...just take my original post and change the name to yours.

Beer poll

My best beer ever was MacEwans 80 in Scotland. Can't get it in the States though. I love the Belhaven Scottish Ale and Boddingtons, Guiness, and Old Speckled Hen are all good also. But I thoroughly enjoy all of the below.

Magic Hat #9
Long Trail
Long Hammer
Sierra Nevada Torpedo Extra
Red Hook

What do they have in common? All are excellent IPA's.
James Jones
207. jamesedjones
204 Longtimefan

Heck yeah. A&W is the best, although IBC is definitely worthwhile, especially in the summer.

205 Ouroboros

Extras or Fraggles...?

Edit: To add the theme song. lol
Bonnie Andrews
208. misfortuona
Hmm, Beer poll. Don't drink it, but KJacobs listed a double CHOCOLATE Stout. Hmmm. I may just have to give that a try.

Sub go ahead we know you really wanna, and honestly I can't wait to see what you have to say.

J.Dauro I've heard some rumours (Aint Facebook wonderful) that Congratulations are in order. Best wishes to you and your new fiance.

Mis-spreading the love
Marcus W
209. toryx
Ouroboros @ 205:

Oh yeah, can't forget Abbot Ale and Old Peculier! Good ales indeed.

It really is hard to find a good ale in the US. A lot of the best simply aren't available. I think you're right about Guinness being a fall back position; I prefer an ale but it can be hard to find even a good one at a lot of GB pubs these days. Guinness is always available, however, and especially good on tap over there.

Blocksmith @ 206: McEwans 80 is damned good too. Man, I wish you could get them over here.
Karen Jacobs
210. KJacobs
WooHoo! A WOT Wedding! Congratulations JDauro!
Bonnie Andrews
211. misfortuona
A wedding, Chocolate Stout, and Fraggles. Thanks jdj

What a morning. I love this site.

Rob Munnelly
212. RobMRobM
Best wishes, Jay. Hope the bonding ceremony is extra special. Rob
Roger Powell
213. forkroot
Although I live in Arizona, I used to report into a manager based in the UK. This meant at least a couple of trips to London every year. I have incredibly fond memories of tipping pints with my co-workers at the local pub and agree totally that there is nothing stateside to match a well-minded ale (or stout) at a pub in the UK.

I also learned not to try to keep up with my English co-workers when it came to drinking :-)

There are a few "English-style pubs" here in the states that serve some of the major brands on draft. It's not the same, although definitely better than nothing.

I content myself at home with Samuel Smith's Organic Ale (in bottles), which is readily available here.
Roger Powell
214. forkroot
J.Dauro - Congratulations indeed! If I may be so bold as to offer some time-tested advice? Here's the tip that has served my wife and me so well for years:

Never, ever "keep score". For example, don't say something like: "I did the dishes last night so it's your turn tonight" .. Don't do it - Don't view marriage as 50/50 - view it as 100% commitment for both parties. Seek to do your share AND MORE.

If you both approach the marriage this way, you will reap wonderful dividends over the years. (And get in the habit now, while it's all peaches and cream and romance.)

Trust me on this one!
Tricia Irish
215. Tektonica
J.Dauro, congratulations! Whee! Happy Times!

We could cater the reception in the Bunker. Suffa could get a few more damane to help out, and we have lots of good cooks. What'a ya think? ( Does the future wife, er, know about all of us?)


OK, so Smithwicks is a stout, tsk tsk. Old Peculiar is good and the Speckled Hen...oh, anything you like will no doubt be great.

BTW, fellow beer lovers, our little town has a pretty cool English Pub, brought over in boxes, and rebuilt in our "quaint" downtown. They have many goodies on tap (not quite the same, but better than bottles) and tons in bottles. Pretty good pub food too and music on the weekends....let me know if you're ever in SoFla, I'll give you directions.
Sharon E.
216. Sulin
Mmmm Chocolate Stout...sounds great! I'm not a big drinker, and I've never had real ale, but I would love to try it sometime. Of the American beer varieties, I really like Sam Adams' Oktoberfest and Shiner's Bohemian Black Lager. :)

JDauro- Congratulations, how exciting! FWIW, Forkroot's advice is spot-on. :)

Hi Mis!

Edit for: Hi Tek!

Bill Reamy
218. BillinHI
forkroot @172: We will definitely have to at least try to get together when you're in my neck of the woods. :)

JDauro: Congrats indeed! Wife and I are approaching anniversary number 47. Now if I could just get her to read WoT!
Rob Munnelly
219. RobMRobM
@various. FYI - chocolate stout is not really chocolate, just made from dark (chocolate colored) hops. But...still tastes really good. Rob
Bonnie Andrews
220. misfortuona
I am very dissapointed to hear this. Sigh.

Mis-back to the tequilla
Karen Jacobs
221. KJacobs
Mis@220: Don't worry Mis - it's so rich & creamy, you won't care that the 'chocolate' is only in the name :)

...Of course, I wouldn't turn down a little tequilla right about now either. I think I'm doomed - my boss is out of town until Wednesday, and between being positively dead here and now all this talk of tasty beverages, my motivation is rapidly circling the drain!
Rob Munnelly
222. RobMRobM
Mis - according to wiki, some brewers do make it with chocolate added, so hope remains....
Raul Gallegos
223. Master_Asmodean
to Ouroboros@181. I think Michael sounded the same in TGS as in the recent books. However if you compare his reading style of early books, I.E. TGH, TDR, ETC, then you can tell a difference. I've read some of the books using a screen reader, but while faster, not as enjoyable. The nice thing about reading them using a Braille display is that I can get an actual "feel" if you'll pardon the pun, for how names, places, ETC are spelled.
Jay Dauro
224. J.Dauro
Thanks to everyone for the good wishes. We are looking forward to a great time. She is currently reading TSR, and although she is not as entranced as I am, is enjoying herself. We did attend JordanCon together, and are planning for next year. ( We hope to sponser "the Bunker", so y'all plan to attend. )

I actually have always heard that you should skip the kids stuff, and go straight to grandkids. Her first grandchild was born Saturday, and that's when I proposed. So we are really celebrating. We head to Austin in a week to see the boy.
Karen Jacobs
225. KJacobs
Mis@220 & RMRM@222: From the Wells & Young's website....
"Pale Ale and Crystal malt, Chocolate Malt, a special blend of sugars, Fuggle and Golding hops, real dark chocolate and chocolate essence are combined to deliver a stout of with real credentials."
...So I guess we can add it back on your list, Mis!
Bonnie Andrews
226. misfortuona
KJacobs & RobM I truly appreciate your efforts to find me a satisfactory stout. My thanks.

J.Dauro Straight to grandkids sounds good.

We have plans for JCon, Oh yes we have plans.

Tricia Irish
227. Tektonica

Congrats on the instant grandparentdom too. Way to go...get everything at once! And the "kids" are grown! Perfect.

Enjoy your celebration!

Edit: Thanks for the Bunker sponsership offer at Jcon next year! Whoo Whoo!

James Jones
228. jamesedjones
224 J.Dauro

Wow. You found someone who'll read the WoT for you?

You did the right thing, J.Dauro. Congrats!
Tina Pierce
229. scissorrunner
she said yes!!
grandkid first!!
she reads WOT!!


and sponsoring the Bunker at Jcon!! WOW! fun!

may all the rest of the best be yours too!
jack middleton
230. chaplainchris
Um...weird. I *agree* w/189 - but I didn't post it. Someone impersonating me...guess I should've registered.

chaplainchrisof the heythatisnotme sept of the impersonated Aiel
Thomas Keith
233. insectoid
A beer poll?? Well, okay—as with Longtimefan, I prefer the root kind; my favorite by far is IBC because it comes in a bottle! Hmm, I see JEJ beat me to it;)

Sub @199/200: Sometimes you gotta be you. :)

J.Dauro: A big congrats to you and your bride-to-be!

Tess Laird
234. thewindrose
J.Dauro - Congrats! Guess you will need to change your 'about me' profile:) And what a score - she is reading WoT!

chaplainchris, Perhaps you were sleep responding?

OK, Sam and the Spear Sisters - is Samadai like Gaul - when he is traveling with Perrin during the kidnapping arc;)

Rob Munnelly
235. RobMRobM
@232. Oh really....Let's see if you can pass these challenge questions: What is your mother's maiden name? What is your favorite color? How many wing beats per minute of a laden swallow?
236. Ouroboros
blocksmith @ 206: We don't get many American pale ales over here. They're not quite the same as the IPAs we have here, the American hops are generally sharper, but I liked all the ones I've tried.

jamesedjones @ 207: Ah damn it! I'll be walking around with that tune in my head for the rest of the day now. Dow dow dow dow d' d' dow dow ... Damn it!

forkroot @ 213: Yes my tail is very tasty but you can't have any. I could do without the dizzy spells though. It would be nice to walk in a straight line for once, or is that just the ale. And yes, we Brits take regular exercise to keep our intake up.

Tektonica @ 215: *smiles* No offence meant. It's just that I've often had to drink Guinness because everything else was lager, and it's definitely a substitute for a good ale. Still, I won't say no to an Irish stout if one is put in front of me.

RobMRobM @ 219: I've had several beers with real chocolate in, though I didn't really take to them; I prefer my chocolate in a solid form.

Master_Asmodean @ 223: Yes Braille displays are good. I need a bigger one!

J.Dauro @ 224: Congratulations. *balloons and streamers*
One word of warning: don't use the Aybaras Marriage Guide. It's rubbish!

Ouroboros of the Drunk to much Sept of the Real Ale!
Marcus W
237. toryx
Sulin @ 216: I agree, Sam Adam's Oktoberfest is pretty darned tasty for American beer. Their Boston Ale isn't too bad either.

misfortuona @ 220: There are some beers that have a pretty strong taste of chocolate. I can't recall any off the top of my head (frankly, it doesn't work for me) but it does happen.

J.Dauro @ 224: Wow, you really did do it right. Congratulations!

Chaplainchris1 @ 232: But which "me" is you?

Or something like that.

God, I could really use an ale.
Bonnie Andrews
238. misfortuona
No we figured if a group of maidens was good enough to carry Rand's honour, it was good enough for Samadai.

Chaplainchris welcome to the grey. It's about time really.

Toryx Thanks for the info. I never knew you could mix beer and chocolate. It's given me reason to hope I too can learn to enjoy the brew.

And somehow I missed a whole lot of comments on the last post and really good ones as well.

I caught Wetlander’s awsomness but then Longtimefan@176 reminded us to remember that no ta'veren were harmed during the writing of this series, Thank you.

Amalissa@ 187 I agree wholeheartedly on the awsomness of this group. I love how the people here treat each other, I can’t even imagine taking part in most of the rant-a-thons on most forums.

Then forkroot@184 went and got personal on us. Thanks I’m glad you like the name. (I kinda do too.)

And I discovered a birthday buddy.

I can’t believe I missed it all, and now it’s Thursday already.
It’s okay though, I’ll be alright, especially since tomorrow is Pot Luck Friday.

Mis-cross posting cause who else will have so totally missed the awesomeness.
Sam Mickel
239. Samadai
As with Longtimefan, Jamesedjones, and Insectoid I prefer the Root variety of beer. Mug and A&w.

Sam Mickel
240. Samadai

That is the best thing anyone has ever said about me.

Marcus W
242. toryx
By the way, not sure if anyone has ever tried it, but Guinness on vanilla ice cream is sublime. I've known even non-beer drinkers who have enjoyed the heck out of that.
Karen Fox
243. thepupxpert
Sam @ 151 - pure awesome, I really enjoyed that!
Karen Fox
244. thepupxpert
ChapChris @ 232 - I went gray and didn't even know it... which is exactly opposite of what I've been doing with my hair for years now!
Karen Fox
245. thepupxpert
Oh, you're talking about registering... ;)
Tina Pierce
246. scissorrunner
my favorite beer is the root variety too. A&W is best, Mug - yummy, Barq's - no
Sam Mickel
247. Samadai
Thanks for the compliments on the story. I'll keep making them.
Roger Powell
248. forkroot
In your next story, make sure there's a character named "Lannis" and kill her off.

(Who me, jealous?? Nah... well, maybe a little :-) )
Sam Mickel
249. Samadai
Forkroot, I already put you in a story. Not that that compares in any way with the WoT
Lannis .
250. Lannis
@ J.Dauro: Congratulations! :D

@ forkroot: :P
Alice Arneson
251. Wetlandernw
RobMRobM @196 - I love Guinness, but he said he'd bring ale, which Guinness isn't.

toryx @198 - Much to my sorrow, I've not yet had the opportunity to try Guinness (or anything else) in Ireland. I'd love to try it, even at the risk of spoiling all the locally-available stuff forever... For the moment, my choices are limited to what I've had a chance to try.

subwoofer @200 - Guinness- the beer that eats like a meal. Flippin' widgets and all. Score me one of those and a hunk 'o cheesecake and I pity the Trolloc that crosses my path. ROFL!!! My six-year-old daughter kept trying to get me to tell her what was so funny... Sorry, sweetie, you've got a few years to go before any of it makes enough sense to be funny. :)

Ouroboros @205 - *sigh* As noted above, I can only enjoy what I can reach... Might take that list along on my next pub visit to see if they have any of it. The Pacific Northwest has a pretty good microbrew selection (Moose Drool is seriously good stuff!) but they are generally very different (in my semi-uneducated opinion) than the good British, Irish & Scots brews.

Tea? Should be an interesting one as well. :)

J.Dauro - Sounds like congratulations are in order! Very cool.

forkroot @214 - Excellent advice!

BillinHI @218 - Congrats to you - and an LOL! :)

chaplainchris1 @232 - And congrats on the grey. Ask alreadymadwhentheycleansedsaidin about impersonators... but he won't go gray because then he couldn't change it for every post.

Congratulations are rife today!!

toryx @242 - Hey, I might have to try that!

Lannis @250 - LOL!!

And wow - that was a whole post of nuthin much, wasn't it? Yikes.

Edit - I keep promising a "thing" on Cadsuane, but it's taking a long time to write. I'll post it someday...
Julian Augustus
252. Alisonwonderland
Wetlander @180:
I think one of the reasons Sorilea and Cadsuane have "legend" status among their respective peers is, in part, due to their ability to see beyond the surface to the individual strengths and weaknesses of the people with whom they associate.

You hid the nail right on the head with Sorilea (and missed the mark completely with Cadsuane, whose leadership is based almost entirely on being the strongest AS around, but I digress). Sorilea is one of the most perceptive people in the series. In TGS, in just one brief conversation with Semirhage she picked up the essential clue about Semirhage's character that would later allow the up to then clueless-after-many-interrogations Cadsuane to break Semirhage.
Tricia Irish
253. Tektonica
Beer Lovers....

I know there are many small boutique breweries all over the US of A. I know they aren't from the "holy land of brewdom", but how about naming some of your great local breweries? (Florida doesn't have any...bad water...it's why our local bakeries stink too.) So, I'm offering up a suggestion from my "other" state:

Fat Tire Brewery in Ft. Collins, Colorado has some great beers and a really fun website. Google them. They do it all, lagers, stouts, seasonals, etc. Their tour is fun too. I also had a great ale in Denver from Odell Brewery called Five Barrel Pale Ale, also made in Ft. Collins...big beer town. They make Ales, Stouts, Pilsners and Porters.

Where is Man-O when we need him? I'm sure he would have something to say about his state's great brews.

Man-O **waves** hey, where are you?
Heidi Byrd
254. sweetlilflower
So, I posted this same theory on the Open Thread, but I wanted to post it here as well b/c it is so exciting to me. I finally got my mother to read the WOT books and my expectations for her have already been exceeded. She has a pictoral representation of the Kalachakra, which literally means wheel of time, and it is a weaving of many colors, one of which is black. She is only in the middle of TGH and she has already come up with the idea that Rand will weave the DO into the Wheel and that will end the struggle for all time. Is that cool or what?

edit for spelling
Tricia Irish
255. Tektonica

Very interesting indeed! I definitely think there will be some weaving done. I suspect that Rand will weave the Bore shut by reweaving the pattern closed, not just some patch. But your mom's theory is very interesting too.

It would also account for a world more like our own, which I believe has been postulated for the "next age". We certainly seems to have more Evil around as a part of our daily reality. Sigh.

But wouldn't The Struggle continue as part of the warp and woof of daily life in Randland? Threatening to take over the pattern? Ebbing and rising?

Please ask mom to explain! It's great she's into the books! We can always use another good mind around here! Is she doing the reread too? She might enjoy it.
256. Freelancer
And I'm off to bed, so no more interesting comments for the next 12 hours! Yes, I'm looking at *you*!


(Apparently uninteresting comments)
Umm, sorry?

I see nothing to apologize for.

Ouch, that stings. :-{|>

Regarding fermented beverages, I terminated my consumption of such about the time I turned 21. I know, proof that I'm all upside down and backwards. So, it's been quite a time since I partook, and cannot therefore speak to the myriad offerings which have sprouted since that time. However, prior to turning totally to tea, I can say that the finest brewed combinations of malt, hops, and barley I encountered were:

~From Continental Europe: DoppelBock Stout (Munich) & Tuborg Stout (Netherlands)
~From the British Isles: Guiness Stout & Harp Ale
~From Mexico: Tres Equis
~From Japan: Kirin Gold

Nowadays the only beer I drink is, as others have stated, the root- variety. The original A&W was the best, and while still good it isn't quite the same today. Stewart's, IBC, and Mug are all good. Shasta & Hires are palatable, and Dad's is yuck. Snapple used to make a clear version they called TRU Root Beer, and it was quite good, but haven't seen it in years.
James Jones
257. jamesedjones
256. Freelancer
The original A&W was the best, and while still good it isn't quite the same today.
*sigh* You speak the truth.
Heidi Byrd
258. sweetlilflower
@Tek, 255
She is already upset with how many spoilery things she knows from listening to me talk about them over the years so she is not going to join the reread until she has read all of the books. Which is too bad b/c she is one of those rare people who are both intelligent and intellectual; plus she really enjoys sf/f books! She is hoping to finish reading everything by Dragon*Con so she can actually enjoy the WOT panels I drag her to :)

I hope she can explain her theory better and then I can explain it to ya'll (love to throw in some southernisms). She was talking about another Buddhist idea about some kind of war between East and West belief systems that made me think of the Seanchan, but I can't remember what it was called.

I guess I'll weigh in on the beverage poll. My favorite beer used to be Bud Light, I know its disgusting to "real" beer drinkers, but now I like Dos Equis the best.
Heidi Byrd
259. sweetlilflower
FOR LEIGH: My mom has asked for a panel at Dragon*Con about Eastern religions in the WOT world...it would be interesting :)
Joseph Blaidd
260. SteelBlaidd
A&W on tap(it's creamier).
Reed's Ginger Brew.

JD congratulations

I've always liked Cadsuane myself especially because she tends to use the "All knowing Aes Sedai" Shtick more on other AS than Rand. All things considered she is quite straightforward with Rand. She tells him what she will and won't do, only gives advice when asked and doesn't beat around the bush. She gives people respect based on their behavior not their position.

As to her sending Tam in to talk Rand down of the ledge. Her plan was likely just trying to find someone Rand trusts to reason with him. I don't think anybody, Min included, really had any clue just how far round the bend Rand had gone. This is partly because they didn't have a long enough baseline(Min,Cads,Sorelia) or had been there for most of the change so hadn't recognized the gradual shift. But also because, unlike Tam, they hadn't experienced the right things.
jack middleton
261. dannyant
I will use this as an excuse to post my Lanfear killed Asmodean theory.

She used her wishes, and her payment was the small amount of power that she lost.
One of the forsaken (I forget which) was surprised that she came back with less power.

The main reasons that this was refuted that I have heard are

1) she is psycho, she would go after rand's lovers.
She killed Asmodean because he was the only person other than rand who knew that she betrayed the Dark One. If he survived and let someone know that she would be in more trouble than she is now.

2) They would not let her out of Finn Land, because they have no control in our world.
They could have had some mechanisim, like a mind trap or something that would allow them to ensure that she came back.

3) She would not know how to find Asmodean, because she cant make wishes about the shadow.
Wishes are open ended, she could have wished for the temporary ability to sense anywhere in the world that one of her flows is present. Because wishes are open ended she could find a way around this.

So her wishes would have been

1) be un-stilled.
2) Detect her tied off flows anywhere in the world.
3) Go back to RandLand for a few hours

In exchange she
Gave up a small amount of her power, and died

Hopefully we find out how wrong we all are in the next book.
Janet Hopkins
262. JanDSedai
Wow! Not much discussion on the chapters, but all kinds of interesting things to say! Beer poll, TOM characters, engagements, potlucks, hobbitses, and DragonCon-- we no need no stinkin' WOT!;)

Lannis, we will squee mightily with you, as your husband is apparently lacking the sensibility to understand the signal honor you have been accorded. I guess we all owe you a drink at JordanCon next year!

And JDauro, you are old enough to know what you want! My sister was unable to have children with her first husband (he had had radiation therapy for Hodgkins Disease), so when she later married a man with grown children, I felt like she was cheating by going straight to grandchildren!

I don't drink much, and seldom beer, but I like Guinness, and some of the micro-brewery beers( because they're fresher?). My husband tells me the ales in England are nothing like what I've ever tasted locally; they're *real* drinks. We have an Old Chicago restaurant in town, and they have 110 beers, on tap and in bottles. they do a "beer tour" where they put your name on the wall when you order 100 different beers (you get credit for the tour on each visit, you don't have to drink them at the same time!).

I haven't attended DragonCon in fifteen years or so, but might try it for the WOT track. The problem with big conventions like that is that you will see someone you really want to talk to as soon as you get there, but you can't because you've got to carry your luggage/check-in/register/go to a panel/something else *right now*, and then you don't see that person until it is time to say good-bye on Sunday. I have enough problems with my own convention which has fewer than 100 attending; we've been doing this for over twenty years, and I *still* don't know everyone's name!

Fraggles and hobbitses, I got nothing more to say.

Oh! WOT... I just reread TGS. On my first reading, I was a little jarred by things, so reading the second time, I was looking for things Brandon should have done/not have done. But I didn't really find anything... not enough to say "this is where he went wrong with Mat" or "this description fell flat". I guess I got used to it!

@dannyant: I, too, think Lanfear dunnit. I know it's not a popular theory these days, but it was my first intuitive guess, and I've never been talked out of it.
vo mabulay
263. alreadymad
Wetlandernw @251
I can go gray if I have to. Just don't feel like doing it much as my handle feels strangely truncated and rather devoid of details. I do bring it out for some threads that require logins like one of the old threads for TGS.

Sigh... you got punk'd.

J.Dauro, congratulations, man.

Lannis, walk in the Light. Congratulations on the singular honor of attending Tarmon Gai'don. Could you do me a favor and slip me a picture of Berelain? In as little as possible.

On the drinking:
Never really could stomach the taste of rootbeer. San Miguel Pale Pilsen is a local beer that's internationally known and it's where I first got my taste for alcohol. Haven't had a chance to try those pub ales though...
jack middleton
264. OwMasha
@ JDauro - congratulations!

@ Lannis - uh, that's not envy behind me. No way.
But seriously, I am so looking forward to seeing you pop up in the text. The official text!

Beer poll: Lev Black Lion. Many others, sure, including some local brews (I'm not the most discerning - if it's bottled, I'll try it), but Lev is THE ONE.

As far as local brewers, I'm lucky to live in Utah - no, seriously. Wasatch makes the hilariously-named Polygamy Porter - reliable, pretty smooth, and funny. (The perfect drink for the DR?)

Are US ales really so bad? I like some of the pale ales around here, especially IPAs, but again ... not an expert, maybe I've been deceived. I spent a few summers in the UK, but couldn't resist the pull of cider, on tap, everywhere ... well, I was younger then. I'll have to give real ale a shot if I ever get to go back.

(OwMasha - still can't believe that there was a beer poll and she almost missed it. Don't get sick like OwMasha did!)
265. Freelancer

Fortunately for me, the local World Market carries Reed's Ginger Brew. I've always preferred sharp flavors, and Reed's is just about the sharpest. Vernor's is the best for being widely available, the only ginger ale I know of that is aged. Schweppe's or Canada Dry just taste like flavored water next to those.

You want a fountain drink with some punch to it? 6oz each of Vernor's and Ocean Spray white grapefruit juice, 1oz Torani peach syrup and a splash of lime juice over cracked ice.
Linda Taglieri
266. Linda
@224: Congratulations Jay! This is wonderful news.
Maiane Bakroeva
267. Isilel
Congratulations, JD!

Wetlandernw @180:

If you mean that she should buck the system as in refuse to submit, how? She's pretty much at the top

Yes, my brains have taken a time out, I meant "buck the system", of course. And what I find disappointing about Cadsuane is that she is (or was) the strongest. Being legendary for AS and a leader among them under such conditions is a gimme, unless you are a complete fool. Now, if Cadsuane had been medium strength, but legendary, _that_ would have made me respect her.


Speaking of Moiraine, I don't remember her promising to stop steering Rand. The Maidens certainly felt entitled to disobey Rand in specific cases like at the battle of Cahirien and to try to change his behavior in some matters.

Promise to obey like a Maiden didn't constrain Moiraine much. It just stopped Rand from seeing her as threatening/ intimidating and he wasn't resisting hearing her out anymore. The whole education thing also helped him to understand why she was suggesting some of the things she did and he was able to make informed decisions.
But between ta'veren and Rand's own stubborness she never had the power to force him into doing anything since TSR - he only thought that she did. The oath really only changed Rand's _perception_ of Moiraine ;).
Tricia Irish
268. Tektonica
Dannyant@261& JanD'Sedai@262:

I too always suspected Lanfear as Asmo's murderer. She had reason to want him silenced. As she has been resurrected, the DO must have snatched her somehow pretty quickly, perhaps when she was granted her "wish" by the Finns to return to RL for a visit. It would also explain Asmodean's declaration, "You!" I never understood why people thought it was Graendal...what did she have to do with Asmo?

Isilel@267: re: Moraine's influence on Rand:

But between ta'veren and Rand's own stubborness she never had the power to force him into doing anything since TSR - he only thought that she did. The oath really only changed Rand's _perception_ of Moiraine ;).

Perception is everything, as "they" say. And it worked. A lesson Cads should learn.
John Massey
269. subwoofer
@Isilel- as "they" say, perception is 9/10 of the law- and to the anal out there- it was on purpose.

@JD-Good times:)- For the ceremony, may I suggest a more... traditional version of the wedding vows, er... the version that includes the word "obey" a lot, and maybe snag a binding rod and throw it in there. Trust me on this one;)

You want a fountain drink with some punch to it? 6oz each of Vernor's and Ocean Spray white grapefruit juice, 1oz Patron gold and a splash of lime juice over cracked ice.

As for anything I may or may not have to say about Golden Asses- well, I'd have to take a pass on that as I know this is a PG site and I am still smarting from even just trying to explain to my wife the er... biblical significance of the term "balls deep", the term came up watching Anthony Bourdain in Thailand.


Tess Laird
270. thewindrose
::Looks to Hot Bookmarks:: We are dominating that category:)

subwoofer - I will take one of those, sounds delicious. (Can I have it now? It may make the market look better to me;)

I will bring shrimp and champagne to the bunker potluck.

Lucas Vollmer
271. aspeo
I'm kinda late to all this but I'll throw in my two cents.

I've never had much chance to try any Irish or English ales, loggers, stouts, etc. However, I have found that I don't care for Guinness because it has a coffee taste, and I'm not a coffee drinker :(

I do like many wheat beers that are made here in the US, of which Boulevard wheat is my favorite. Budweiser also made an American Ale for a while that was quite good :)

Also to be somewhat WOT related... :twitch:
272. MasterAlThor

Congrats!!!! I envy you, but I am hoping that you go to J Con next year so I can have you sign the book.


Congrats!!!!! You will be getting you grandparents info package in the mail. Can't wait to see you at the lodge meetings. By the way, your new angreal actually works as a magnet. Be careful.


Texas is like a whole nother country. Unless you have lived somewhere else, you might not like it out here in crazy land.

Beer pool

I don't really drink all that much anymore. When I did I like Killian's Irish Red. I had that motor oil that you guys call Guinness, sorry I don't like to chew my beer.

Marcus W
273. toryx
Wetlandernw @ 251:

You know, we've had our agreements and disagreements but learning that you love Guinness makes me like you all the more.

It is really hard to drink Guinness after coming back from Ireland and having it from the source, so to speak. I usually have to stop drinking any beer at all, actually, for the first six months or so after going overseas. Which is okay when you consider how much beer I typically have when I go over there. It all balances out.

Tektonica @ 253: I've had Fat Tire, though it's been a long darned time. I can't remember how good it was. I'm going to be in Grand Junction soon, though. Do you (or Man-O) have any recommendations for a good brewery out there?

San Luis Obispo in California used to have a great brewery, SLO Brew. Not sure if they're still there or not. Kalamazoo in Michigan has Bell's, which has some decent brews. But honestly, I'd have to pick Samuel Adams as the best Microbrew available in the states and you can get it almost anywhere (though sadly their best, Boston Ale, can be hard to find).

Freelancer @ 256: I have to say, Kirin Gold is good stuff.

JanDSedai @ 262: I dig the beer tour idea. I'd totally go for that. Though it'd probably take me years to finish it. For all my raving about beers lately, I don't actually drink it that often. That's probably part of why I enjoy it so much.

As for DragonCon...funny, the reason I'll never go there is because I don't want to risk running into certain people.

And finally, to be somewhat on topic: I've never pegged Lanfear for Asmodean's death. I just can't buy it. And though I think Graendal is the most likely suspect, I've always hoped it was someone more interesting like Slayer.
Sharon E.
274. Sulin
OwMasha@264- Re Polygamy Porter- ROTFL! I can just see Rand lounging on the Sun Throne, Porter in one hand, remote in the other. :D

M-A-T- Does FL count as "somewhere else?" lol. As much as the heat gets to me at times, you're right-I could never leave the Three-Fold Land permanently. :)

jack middleton
275. Hrothgordo
Whole bunch of topics in this thread so here goes . . .

Cadsuane and Sorilea - Both are bullies and annoying as such. But I think much of the annoyance of Cads’ behavior is our general ignorance of her goals and motivations. Even her POV moments are written as vague in the end

Sorilea’s goals are aimed at keeping as many of the Aiel alive as possible. She knows Rand must reach TG for any of them to live, and that many of them will die no matter what. So she has focused on keeping him aware of his humanity and trying to force him to see his responsibility to his people (and to see them as his people)

Rand and Egwene – I have seen a lot of items in here about how Rand doesn’t chameleon like Egwene and that things would be so much better if he did. I don’t know how many ways I can disagree with these thoughts.

When Egwene leaves the TR she does so because she wants to define herself as more than the innkeeper’s daughter, the Wisdom’s apprentice or Rand’s GF. Instead of going Goth or joining the Track team she experiments with being AS and Aiel. And she feels she needs to all but abandon her old life to do it, if only temporarily.

Rand on the other hand is put in situation after situation where others are trying to define him. Bit after bit of his old life is ripped from him starting with Tam’s fevered words in EotW. As such it makes sense that he would cling to the bits remaining as strongly as he could.

Rand adapts as quickly as Egwene does, and one can argue more quickly in many places. Look at his arc in tGH or tSR, where he has to become a fairly adept student of the Game of Houses, not to mention a blademaster and an Aiel Chief.

It’s just that Rand has his moral absolutism and situations that force his ability to immerse himself as culturally as Egwene does. In the Aiel case he is held back by the knowledge that he is going to get most of the them killed and knowing that sacrifice refuses to lie to them by being a “pretend” Aiel.
Leigh Butler
276. leighdb
sweetlilflower @259:

I think that's a great idea, but unfortunately I don't have anything to do with DragonCon, and in fact I've never even been to one.

You should contact Jennifer Liang, she's kind of the head honcho of Jordan-and-con-related things.
Rob Munnelly
277. RobMRobM
Hey, Leigh's here. Countdown to new post has begun. 20:00, 19:59, 19:58....
Tricia Irish
278. Tektonica

Another Anthony Bourdain aficionado! Love that guy...so cranky, so honest, so adventurous!


I don't know any breweries in Grand Junction, but Odell's and Fat Tire should be available there...it rarely leaves Colorado.

Have you been there before? It's where Colorado starts to look like Utah and the buttes (that's buttes, Sub) are stunning. There's a great small road that parallels I-70 on the south side, through pick your own cherry and peach orchards and some decent wineries...fun! (Good mountain biking too.)

BTW: I just want to clarify....I'm pretty strictly a one drink gal....any more and I get a headache.....I've just been around long enough to have tried many quaffs! That's why the drink had better be GOOD!

Sulin@274: can just see Rand lounging on the Sun Throne, Porter in one hand, remote in the other. :D ROFLOL. What a vision!

And Sulin, Florida does NOT count as somewhere else....it's nowheresville.

**twichy twich twich**
Tess Laird
279. thewindrose
Hrothgordo -One of the things I appreciate about Rand is that he doesn't start dressing like an Aiel. I do start grinding my teeth when he gets further into his non-trust of just about everyone. The Aiel for the most part accept him(most notable exclusions being the Shaido and Mera'din) and follow him willingly. It is hard when he starts just thinking of them as a tool, and one he doesn't trust.

Chris Chaplain
280. chaplainchris1
Freelancer @ 256 - twasn't me!

And I didn't get the insult until just now - that the imposter was claiming you hadn't said anything interesting. When I said I agreed with the imposter, I was only saying that 1) it weren't me, and 2) you had no toh!

Now I have toh.

But not as much as imposter.

@various - thanks for the welcome to the gray. Now that I figured out what that meant. :) Why is it called that, exactly?

Does the potluck start when Lee posts anew?
Karen Jacobs
281. KJacobs
Chaplainchris1@280: Everyone says Welcome to the Gray because the names of registered users show up in gray, whereas those that post without logging in show up as red. That would never work in WOT ... No hidden meanings :)
Sam Mickel
282. Samadai
Chaplainchris1 and Freelancer,

I have Toh, I ask that you help me make it right.
Sean Banawnie
283. Seanie
Irish/English:While I like Guiness on occasion , I like Newcastle Brown Ale (not heavy, try it!) on any occasion ;), just not often

American micro Dock Street from Philly...

Bonnie Andrews
284. misfortuona
Please tell me you're bringing Patron to the pot luck. Please! I'll bring a whole tray of bacon appies just for you. ;)

ChaplainChris & Freelancer I have Toh to you as well. It was a moment of weakness, and Sam convinced me it was a good idea.

Karen Jacobs
285. KJacobs
Sam@282 & Mis@269: . . . Ah! The evils of Gabbly :)
Bonnie Andrews
286. misfortuona
KJacobs Yes, yes, lets blame it on Gabbly.

Mis-Free you know I always think what you have to say is interesting. Right? Right?
jack middleton
287. BenM
New way (possibly) of looking at the Asmo mystery, and the obvious test:

Who in Randland would he probably be terrified of on sight?
- Lanfear
- Semirhage
- Slayer
- a gholam
- The other Forsaken to a lesser extent, if he thought they were going to kill him for his "betrayal" (same thing pretty much applies to Slayer or gholam, as they'd probably be sent by another FS.)

I believe Slayer and the gholam fail the obviosity, since we hadn't heard of them yet. It still pretty much comes down to what we saw in the FAQ. Lanfear or Graendal. I've always been of the Greandal-dunnit camp, because she best passes the obviosity test. Nobody else seems to be certain that Asmo is dead within a few books of the event.
Sam Mickel
288. Samadai
Chaplainchris and Freelancer,

We did not intend it as an insult, you both have excellent commentary. We saw Freelancers uhm, sorry and were just using a play on words.
Tricia Irish
289. Tektonica
You two pranksters! I think Sam is a questionable influence on you Mis...or is it the other way around....ummmmm.....

(Maybe it's these chapters driving us to drink and prank?)

I hope the Chaplin can think up something good for you two to meet your toh! LOL.
290. Freelancer
ChaplainChris1 has no Toh to me.

Samadai, Mis-representing

Be assured, I will be honored to help you as necessary.


Ok, I have to cave in and admit to my misspent youth. When I was 19 and on a six-week trip through Europe, three friends and I spent four days in Munich. There was this little tavern in the southeastern Schwabing district called The House of 111 Beers. About the middle of the second night we realized none of us could make it through the menu in the time remaining to us there, so we divided and conquered. The owner was a wonderful man, truly pleased to have young Yanks in his establishment. When we returned the second night he wouldn't let us buy our first drinks or food, and when the four of us finished the menu, he announced it (in German and English), and gave us each a very nice "stubby" mug.
craig thrift
291. gagecreedlives
Well Sam and Mis looks like there is only one WoT themed punishment suitable for you both.

Yep a round of spankings for your both delivered by the Chaplin and Free.

Uncomfortable mental images FTW
Tess Laird
292. thewindrose
I believe Freelancer and chaplainchris1 are using the silent treatment on you. You will keep digging yourselves in deeper and deeper...

Just saying;)

Karen Jacobs
293. KJacobs
gagecreedlives@291: I'm getting funny looks from the two stragglers left in the office, wondering why I just choked on my water :) ROFL!
Chris Chaplain
294. chaplainchris1
Gray/red - perils of being slightly color blind, didn't even notice 'til it was pointed out. Neither would be my choice of Ajah in fantasyland, though I suppose the Gray is often pretty close to what I do irl.

In that spirit - nobody got no toh to me. And I don't know what the heck anybody's talking about in these last 10 posts! What I want to know is, where's the pot-luck! Somebody better show up with the cookies or cherry pies or homemade flautas, or there *will* be toh to pay!

Maybe even with spankings. (Do I have toh to Leigh now?)

Re: joining the Gray - new members don't have to bake a pie or anything like those new to the Blue, do they? Cuz I'm still just making sausage balls...and a casserole.

My official join-up seems to be making me lose (even more) touch with reality.

Tina Pierce
295. scissorrunner
but the loss of reality is a GOOD thing!!!

sausage balls sounds yummy.....

*twitching for a new post*
Tricia Irish
296. Tektonica
Reality? RL is something we occasionally reference.
Marcus W
297. toryx
Tektonica @ 278:

I've been to Grand Junction before but it's been years...nay, decades, and I've always just been passing through. I'm going to be staying the night there after coming through Utah on a Four Elements road trip next week. I was trying to make it all the way out to Denver, but unfortunately I just don't have the time.

Sadly, I suspect that it's too early for peaches, or I'd totally be picking some while I'm out there.

Boy, it really sounds like you need to find a way out of Florida!
Chris Chaplain
298. chaplainchris1
Scissorrunner - hence the "Score!" Tektonica - that makes sense! Reference RL to enrich fantasy!

...I'dve joined up long ago if I'd realized I wouldn't have to do word verification every time I posted...
Jacy Clark
299. Amalisa
*trundles into the bunker with homemade cheese tortellini with basil, chicken and sweet marinara, bruschetta, Italian cream cake and two bottles of Valpolicella*

There are advantages to being unemployed - lots of time to cook!

Congratulations, J. Dauro!! I wish you and your bride-to-be all the happiness in the world! May the Light shine on your both!

Wow, Samadai... If the writing side of wheeloftime.org ever gets rolling again, I will certainly let you know!!

Mis - I've always hoped that something of the ruins of Tzora would show up somewhere in the books. But I don't think we know where it is...

Sulin - Awesome picture!!

Welcome, MaerlynsRose!!

Beverage survey: current favorite is Blue Moon Belgian White Ale. Complete with the slice of orange...

Absolutely over the moon ecstatic at the idea of a character reunion in ToM!!

Congrats on the gray, ChaplainChris!!

New post is up!! *goes to read*
Roger Powell
300. forkroot
BTW: I just want to clarify....I'm pretty strictly a one drink gal....any more and I get a headache.
There's a famous quotation from Dorothy Parker that went something like: "A drink? Yes! But no more than two. Three drinks and I'm under the table, four drinks and I'm under the host." ;-)

Naughty Fork™
diane heath
302. jadelollipop
not sure this will be seen. New post is up after all
But just a note that I grew up in the Southwest (NM) as many many relatives lived in Texas. Raised family in South Florida and now in Tennessee....
Alice Arneson
303. Wetlandernw
Nothing profound here, just a couple of comments on the comments, and a lot of chuckles over the twitching that happens on Friday mornings. :)

Isilel @ 267 - So if I understand right, your problem with respecting Cadsuane is more in how she was written - if she'd been written as a medium-strength AS but with the rest pretty much as is, you'd find her more impressive? I can see that, I guess. I just don't tend to think in terms of "I wish he'd written this character with different attributes." Just the way I'm built; I have fun trying to figure out what makes them tick as written, assuming that I find them believably written. (In WoT, I find most of the characters believable; I like some better than others, but I can accept them as "real" the way they are written.) Good notes on Moiraine.

toryx@273 - Well, I know there are certain ideas we're guaranteed to disagree on, but I've always gotten the impression that we like many of the same things. Like Guinness. :)

Someone asked about local microbreweries - Spanish Peaks Brewing Co. in Bozeman, MT used to make some really good stuff, but I'm not there any more so I don't know what they're doing now. Big Sky Brewing Co. in Missoula, MT makes some good stuff that's more widely available, at least in the Pac NW: Moose Drool is a yummy brown ale, and although I'm not likely to drink beer much in the winter, their Powder Hound Winter Ale is pretty tasty stuff. IMHO. I also like Alaskan Brewing Co. (Juneau, AK) and Red Hook (I generally prefer the ESB to the IPA, though).

Oh, and toryx... I'm with you on Lanfear doing for Asmodean. As you say...I just can't buy it. And though I think Graendal is the most likely suspect, I've always hoped it was someone more interesting like Slayer. I guess that's why I've never really gotten too wound up about it; I can't see Lanfear, but no one I can see is very interesting in the role. So, I don't really care all that much. It'll be nice to have it settled, though.

Hrothgordo @275 - I think you have a valid point about Cadsuane and Sorilea - we know what motivates Sorilea, but we just haven't been given much on Cadsuane. We have hints about what makes her "a legend" to other AS, and a few thoughts on the "laughter and tears" thing, but those are only surface. At least from my view, the "laughter and tears" is only a means to an end, but we're not sure what that end is exactly. (Of course, I disagree with the "bullies and annoying" statement, but I've argued that one enough.)

Freelancer, ChaplainChris, Samadai, Misfortuona... LOL, all of you!! Be assured, I will be honored to help you as necessary. Icing on the cake - this is where it burst out and made my son begin to wonder if Mom's lost it completely... :) And everyone else just makes it worse. I love Friday afternoon - I get to catch up on everyone's twitching all at once before I go read the new post. And Chris... sometimes reality is highly overrated. ;)

Amalisa @299 - Wow, I'm at your table!! Nothing like a list of favorites to make my mouth water...

Okay, y'all have abandoned this in favor of the new post, which I'm not quite ready to read because I haven't finished the chapters. See you there in a few!
John Massey
304. subwoofer
@Free290- back when you were 19?! They invented beer back then? They had Munich back then? Hmmmmmmm.

@Tek - I love Tony Bourdain- he's the kind of guy that would try anything on a dare. Loved when he was in Brazil and had the after hangover meal and was checking for heart palpitations. Good times:)

Tricia Irish
305. Tektonica

Re: Anthony Bourdain: Loved when he was going to Greece and crabbed about it all the way there...how he hated Greek food and had no interest, etc...then LOVED it! Ate crow happily along with great food on the beach.

Another cool, serious moment was when he was in Germany and made a wonderfully eloquent statement about how the Cuisine reflected the history and conquerors of the country. Oh, I wish I could remember it verbatim.

He embodies many personal qualities I am working on...an adventurous spirit, openness, being in the moment, embracing pleasure and happiness. (I have a feeling these were hard learned lessons for him, from some of his books....quite a journey and a wild ride.)
John Massey
306. subwoofer

Thought you would appreciate this- "I kinda wish I was drunk before eating this".

Tricia Irish
307. Tektonica
Sub: Thank you so much! Hysterical and now I have seen a maple bacon donut...they are REAL!
Jacy Clark
308. Amalisa

OMG, the Jagermeister doughnut... my stomach actually churned at the thought...

*reaches for the pepto-bismol doughnut*
jack middleton
309. Nate42
I almost never post comments (just lurk a lot), but as a homebrewer/beer dork I can't resist a good beer discussion.

To respond to various statements (sorry, way too lazy to quote them all)

There's no such thing as dark hops. Hops are uniformly green. Despite Sam Adam's "hops are to beer as grapes are to wine" marketing, its actually malt (ie malted barley) that is fermented into alcohol to make beer. Hops are simply a spice and preservative.

There is a popular ingrediant in stouts and porters called "chocolate malt" which is a toasted malt, and so named for a flavor reminiscent of dark chocolate. However, beers that actually list chocolate in the name (such as young's double chocolate stout) tend to contain honest to god chocolate.

Guinness is most certainly an ale. Although there are tons of substyles, all beer (with very few exceptions) can be loosely classified as ale or lager, and Guinness (like all stouts) is an ale.

I could go on (and just might later) but for now I got to run.

Marcus W
310. toryx
Wetlandernw @ 303:

On who killed Asmodean:

So, I don't really care all that much.

You know, ultimately that's where I'm at too. I've always been a little curious but it's not one of the mysteries that really nags at me. I've always thought it's far more important that he was killed at all.
jack middleton
311. spacechampion
I suppose in a roundabout way you could say she was the root cause, for digging up Tam and sending him to talk to Rand, which more or less triggered the whole near-meltdown, but… well. It seems a bit, I dunno. Roundabout.

You might as well say Kevin Bacon caused it.

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