Fri
Jun 4 2010 1:08pm

The Wheel of Time Re-read: The Path of Daggers, Part 12

Happy Friday, people of Tor.com! I bring you a Wheel of Time Re-read to usher in the weekendy… weekendness. Whatever.

Today’s entry covers Chapters 19 and 20 of The Path of Daggers, in which we learn you can’t fight in here, this is the War Vote!

(Yay!)

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.

And now, the post!

Chapter 19: The Law

What Happens
Everyone is eager to get back to camp, and the ride back is tense. Even though Egwene sets a hard pace, both Lelaine and Romanda manage to hold warded conferences with their lackeys in the Hall, and the other Sitters confer variously with each other as well, with the exception of Delana, who only speaks to Halima and seems very worried. Sheriam and Siuan both tell Egwene that they didn’t learn much about the rumors of Aes Sedai in Andor before starting to snipe at each other; Egwene shuts them up and gives Sheriam instructions for when they reach camp.

Sheriam’s tilted eyes went wide at the orders. “Mother, if I may ask, why… ?” She trailed off under Egwene’s level gaze, and swallowed. “It will be as you say, Mother,” she said slowly. “Strange. I remember the day you and Nynaeve came to the Tower, two girls who couldn’t decide whether to be excited or frightened. So much has changed since then. Everything.”

“Nothing stays the same forever,” Egwene told her.

Once they reach camp, Egwene expects Bryne to peel off with the rest of the soldiers, but instead he asks her to allow him to accompany her “a while longer”. Egwene knows it isn’t a good idea for him to declare his allegiance to her so openly yet, and tells him no. She adds that if she doesn’t send Siuan to him that night, he should leave, as staying could prove dangerous or even fatal if Egwene is blamed for what happened today. Bryne replies that he gave his word. He glances at Siuan, and tells Egwene she has Bryne and the army at her back, and that should count for something even among Aes Sedai. He leaves (Siuan watches him go with “anguish”), and Egwene is amazed at his openness now, of all times. Egwene and Siuan head to her tent to eat while Sheriam makes the announcement that the Amyrlin calls for a formal session of the Hall. Over stew, Siuan asks if Egwene would really tell Bryne about her feelings for him, as she thinks he would make her life “the Pit of Doom” if he knew. This makes no sense to Egwene, and she threatens to pay off Siuan’s debt to him and forbid her to see Bryne anymore if she can’t stop being so “half-witted” regarding him; Siuan answers that she will work off her debt, and also that Min told her she’d have to stay near Bryne or they’d both die, “or something like that”, but Egwene sees her blush, and realizes she’ll just do anything to be near him.

“Siuan,” Egwene said warningly. “You deny one more time what’s plain as your nose, and I’ll tell him and give him the money.”

Siuan pouted sullenly. She pouted! Sullenly! Siuan! “I don’t have time to be in love. I barely have time to think, between working for you and him. And even if everything goes right tonight, I’ll have twice as much to do. Besides…” Her face fell, and she shifted on the stool. “What if he doesn’t… return my feelings?” she muttered. “He’s never even tried to kiss me. All he cares about is whether his shirts are clean.”

It suddenly occurs to Egwene to wonder why exactly Bryne had agreed to maintain his and Siuan’s “preposterous” arrangement, or throw his loyalty to Egwene (whose only ally, as far as he knows, is Siuan), or for that matter why he had agreed to build the army in the first place—something that he had to know could get him executed.

Could the answer to all of those questions be as simple as... he loved Siuan? No; most men were frivolous and flighty, but that was truly preposterous! Still, she offered the suggestion, if only to amuse Siuan. It might cheer her a little.

Siuan snorted in disbelief. It sounded odd, coming from that pretty face, but no one could put quite so much expression into a snort as she did. “He’s not a total idiot,” she said dryly. “In fact, he has a good head on his shoulders. He thinks like a woman, most of the time.”

Siuan then adroitly changes the subject to the impending meeting, but they’ve gone over everything so often there’s little to discuss, so the result is Siuan getting more and more morbid with gallows humor until they are interrupted by Sheriam with the news that it’s time.

Siuan bounded to her feet and seized her cloak from Egwene’s cot, but she paused in the act of draping it on her shoulders. “I have sailed the Fingers of the Dragon in the dark, you know,” she said seriously. “And netted a lionfish once, with my father. It can be done.”

Sheriam asks rather petulantly why Egwene will not trust her Keeper with her plans, and Egwene gives a noncommittal answer; to herself, she thinks she only trusts a forced oath so far, even with Aes Sedai. They head to where the pavilion tent is set up, and most of the sisters in the camp are circled around it. Sheriam starts the ritual just as a flustered Delana runs up, the last Sitter to arrive; Aledrin (White) makes a ward against eavesdropping in accordance with ritual as Egwene paces to her seat. Lelaine is already standing and Romanda rising when Egwene reaches her place, but she forestalls them both by speaking first.

“I call a question before the Hall,” she said in a loud, firm voice. “Who will stand to declare war against the usurper Elaida do Avriny a’Roihan?”

Everyone stares at her in amazement a moment. Then Lelaine answers that the Hall does not declare war on individuals, and in any case there are more important matters to address. She starts in on her issues with what happened with the Andorans, and Romanda cuts in to say she has more important issues than that, one of them regarding Lelaine’s fitness to serve in the Hall. Egwene interrupts them both with the declaration that Tower law forbids shelving a question of war. Everyone blinks, and Janya (Brown) turns to Takima (also Brown) and asks her opinion, saying she remembers Takima saying she had read the Law of War.

Egwene held her breath. The White Tower had sent soldiers to any number of wars over the last thousand years, but always in response to a plea for help from at least two thrones, and it always had been their war, not the Tower’s. The last time the Tower itself actually declared war had been against Artur Hawkwing. Siuan said that now only a few librarians knew much more than that there was a Law of War.

Takima appears nervous, but finally answers shortly that Egwene is correct, and Egwene realizes Takima knows, and prays that she keeps silent. Romanda rather ungraciously acknowledges the point and invites Egwene to speak her case. Egwene makes a speech, in which she makes the point that Arathelle and Pelivar exemplify the doubt with which they are regarded, and that no one will take them seriously until they remove all doubt as to their purpose, by formally declaring war on Elaida.

“We have walked to the door and put our hands on the latch. If you are afraid to walk through, then you all but ask the world to believe that you are nothing but Elaida’s puppets.”

Romanda impatiently calls for a vote, and Janya gets up immediately, saying they might as well. She is followed by Escaralde (the third Brown Sitter), Moria (Blue), and Samalin and Malind (two of the Green Sitters). The third Green, Faiselle, is shocked by this. They are followed by Salita (Yellow, ignoring Romanda’s frown), Kwamesa (Gray), Aledrin and Berana (both White). Delana stands slowly, looking sick to her stomach, but no one else rises, and Egwene feels sick herself, realizing the count is short. Then Moria rounds on Lyrelle and Lelaine (the other two Blue Sitters) in a fury, asking why they wait, when no woman in the history of the Tower deserves the declaration more. Lelaine sniffs, affronted, and opines she hardly thinks it worth a vote, but shrugs and stands, pulling Lyrelle up with her. Takima grunts as if punched, and Egwene can hardly believe it. A wide-eyed Sheriam declares the lesser consensus, and asks for the greater consensus for unity’s sake, but Romanda says flatly that she won’t get it, and proposes they turn to other matters.

“I don’t think we can,” Egwene cut in. “Takima, what does the Law of War say about the Amyrlin Seat?” Romanda was left with her mouth hanging open.

Takima’s lips writhed. The diminutive Brown looked more than ever a bird wishing to take flight. “The Law…” she began, then took a deep breath and sat up straight. “The Law of War states, ‘As one set of hands must guide a sword, so the Amyrlin Seat shall direct and prosecute the war by decree. She shall seek the advice of the Hall of the Tower, but the Hall shall carry out her decrees with all possible speed, and for the sake of unity, they shall…’ ” She faltered, and had to visibly force herself to go on. “ ‘…they shall and must approve any decree of the Amyrlin Seat regarding prosecution of the war with the greater consensus.’ ”

There is a dead silence, and then Delana vomits on the floor, and several others look like they might join her; Romanda looks like she might “bite through a nail.”

“Very clever,” Lelaine said at last in clipped tones, and after a deliberate pause, added, “Mother. Will you tell us what the great wisdom of your vast experience tells you to do? About the war, I mean. I want to make myself clear.”

“Let me make myself clear, too,” Egwene said coldly. Leaning forward, she fixed the Blue Sitter sternly. “A certain degree of respect is required toward the Amyrlin Seat, and from now on, I will have it, daughter. This is no time for me to have to unchair you and name a penance.” Lelaine’s eyes crept wider and wider with shock. Had the woman really believed everything would continue as before? Or after so long not daring to show more than the tiniest backbone, had Lelaine simply believed she had none?

Romanda smiles, and Egwene wipes it off her face by telling her Tiana can find two birches if necessary. Still looking sick, Takima rises and shakily praises the notion of staying here a month “or longer”, but Egwene tells her there will be no more delays.

Would she be another Gerra, or another Shein? Either was still possible. “In one month, we will Travel from here.” No; she was Egwene al’Vere, and whatever the secret histories would say of her faults and virtues, the Light only knew, but they would be hers, not copies of some other woman’s. “In one month, we will begin the siege of Tar Valon.”

This time, the silence was broken only by the sound of Takima weeping.

Commentary
I believe this is what the Youth of Today (or, possibly, the Youth of 2005 or thereabouts, anyway) mean when they say “Girl, you got SERVED.”

Or “girls”, in this case. Singular or plural, they got served, you guys. On a platter, no less. Parsley may have been involved. So ha! Suck on that, Hall! Nyah! Neener neener!

Why yes, I am the epitome of sober maturity, thank you for noticing. But I dare you to claim you didn’t mentally stick out your tongue at Romanda et al and wiggle your fingers in your ears in diabolical childish glee here, because c’mon. You totally did.

Also, unless I’m really forgetting something, this is without question the most awesome moment in this book.

(And if I am forgetting something, that in itself kind of strongly argues against the hypothetical awesomeness of that something, doesn’t it? Or, uh, something. This totally makes sense in my head, I swear.)

Anyway. Let this be a lesson to you all: never mess with an Ooh Ooh Girl, for we will cut you. We will cut you DEEP. Ignore this wisdom at your peril!

I’m sure there’s some criticism you could level at Egwene here about dirty political tricks and end-runs by way of technicalities and yadda blah snore, but I ain’t trying to hear that, y’all. First of all, the Hall started it by raising Egwene via legal loophole in the first place, so KARMA, is what I’m saying, and second, it was Extremely Cool, and also moves the plot, so la la la, I can’t hear you.

Meanwhile, my medal for Airtight Logical Thinkings and Arguing Real Good is in the mail. Whoo!

Takima: Awesomeness of the scene aside, the one thing that always rather puzzled me about the War Vote is why Takima didn’t say anything to warn the others about the trick Egwene was pulling. Even if she didn’t really care about the fact that Egwene was about to achieve an effective coup (though I can’t see how she wouldn’t care about that!), Takima is also one of the “Obstructionist Five” Sitters who constantly angled for a rapprochement with the Tower and tried to block any decisions that moved toward prosecuting the war. So it always seemed rather unbelievable to me to suppose she wouldn’t have torpedoed the whole thing—just as much to prevent a formal declaration of war on Elaida in the first place as to sabotage Egwene’s hostile takeover. Basically, she had double the reason to pipe up as any of the others, and yet she didn’t. Why?

I did notice a small detail this time around which may be meant to explain it. There was a brief aside in Chapter 16 about Takima, when Egwene sees Morvrin talking to her (about the Reds and Logain, as Egwene had instructed), and Egwene being a bit puzzled at the choice of Takima to chat up as opposed to Janya or Escaralde (the other two Brown Sitters). The only thing I can figure is that it was brought to our attention so that we could assume Morvrin’s talk of the Reds’ (alleged) suckiness gave Takima a reason for keeping her mouth shut—or at least kept her indecisive long enough to give Egwene the win by default. If so, Morvrin really did Egwene a solid there, since apparently Janya and Escaralde needed no convincing at all on that score—they were the first two to stand for the War Vote. If Morvrin had chosen one of the other two Brown Sitters to propagandize, I presume the War Vote might have gone very differently.

Delana: Why the vomiting, again? Wouldn’t a formal declaration of war against Elaida and a seizure of power by the one person (Egwene) who can be presumed to actually vigorously pursue it be a good thing for the Shadow? More chaos, dissent, strife, etc.? Eh? Man, these evil people confuse me sometimes.

Sheriam: Speaking of evil people. One thing that her being definitely Black makes annoying is that for hopefully obvious reasons, it makes the sincerity of everything she says extremely suspect. This jumped out at me here especially with her tacit compliment to Egwene at the beginning of the chapter, which I originally thought was a very cool indicator of how much Egwene has accomplished re: getting her followers to respect her, but now of course I must regard as nothing more than Evil Sheriam blowing smoke up her ass. Bah.

Siuan and Bryne: Siuan continues to be hilarious. “She pouted! Sullenly! Siuan!” I LOL’d, you guys.

I don’t think I found her uncertainty about Bryne’s feelings for her (and the situation in general) as endearing before I read TGS; I’m under the impression that I previously mostly regarded their romance as annoying and unnecessarily drawn out. And slightly skeevy, too; don’t think I’ve forgotten the damn spanking thing!

But there is definitely a difference this time around, possibly because at least now I know there’s an end in sight—of this particular storyline, at least. And also possibly because for whatever reason I’ve been liking Siuan on this re-read about forty times more than I ever did before, so maybe I have more sympathy for her, or something. Who knows. But in any case, I’m glad I’m enjoying it!

And, yeah. So, in conclusion, yay War Vote, Egwene = Awesome.

And now, on to… other things.

 

Chapter 20: Into Andor

What Happens
As Nynaeve Heals Elayne, Aviendha, and Birgitte of the wounds received from the exploding gateway, Elayne hopes that the trip to Caemlyn goes smoothly. Lan has to yank out the bolt in Birgitte’s thigh before Nynaeve can Heal her, and compliments her stoicism by saying “Tai’shar Kandor”.

True blood of Kandor. Birgitte blinked, and he paused. “Forgive me if I erred. I assumed from your clothes you were Kandori.”

“Oh, yes,” Birgitte breathed. “Kandori.” Her sickly grin might have been from her injuries; Nynaeve was impatiently shooing Lan out of the way so she could lay hands on her. Elayne hoped the woman knew more of Kandor than the name; when Birgitte had last been born, there had been no Kandor. She should have taken it as an omen.

They head back to Elayne’s estate to find the party in general chaos and disgruntlement over the situation, but Alise is swiftly settling everyone, and even the Windfinders and Aes Sedai are cautious of her. Nynaeve glares at Alise and stalks off, and Elayne asks Lan where Ispan is. He tells her Vandene and Adeleas have taken her to a small hut half a mile away, and intend to stay there for the night; Elayne divines from this that Ispan is to be questioned again that night, and shivers. She and Aviendha, Birgitte, and Nynaeve are obliged to sleep in one bed owing to the overcrowding, and the next morning they set out again, and Elayne reflects that while the chances of their party going unnoticed were likely impossible, there is no reason for anyone to think the Daughter-Heir herself was part of it. She expects trouble from the noblewomen and rich merchants traveling with them, but Reanne and Alise settle that potential explosion before it begins. As they come upon more settled land, Elayne attempts (anonymously) to get a feel for the sentiment regarding herself and the throne. She learns that most people believe she was killed by Rand along with her mother, and favor Dyelin for the throne.

Elayne heard a great deal about Rand, rumors ranging from him swearing fealty to Elaida to him being the King of Illian, of all things. In Andor, he was blamed for everything bad that happened for the last two or three years, including stillbirths and broken legs, infestations of grasshoppers, two-headed calves, and three-legged chickens. And even people who thought her mother had ruined the country and an end to the reign of House Trakand was good riddance still believed Rand al’Thor an invader. The Dragon Reborn was supposed to fight the Dark One at Shayol Ghul, and he should be driven out of Andor. Not what she had hoped to hear, not a bit of it. But she heard it all again and again. It was not a pleasant journey at all. It was one long lesson in one of Lini’s favorite sayings. It isn’t the stone you see that trips you on your nose.

Elayne worries that the tensions between the Windfinders, the Aes Sedai, and the Kin will escalate, but they never quite seem to do so. Ispan ceases to be a problem in that she grows meeker and more eager to please by the day, but Adeleas is frustrated that they can only get information on outdated Black Ajah plots that are no longer relevant, and only names of Darkfriends Adeleas is sure are already dead. Vandene is beginning to suspect that Ispan has taken an Oath against betraying her fellow Black sisters. Meanwhile Nynaeve is irritating Elayne with her behavior over Lan.

It was her own fault for choosing a Sea Folk wedding, in Elayne’s estimation. The Sea Folk believed in hierarchy as they did in the sea, and they knew a woman and her husband might be promoted one past the other many times in their lives. Their marriage rites took that into account. Whoever had the right to command in public, must obey in private. Lan never took advantage, so Nynaeve said— “not really,” whatever that was supposed to mean! She always blushed when she said it—but she kept waiting for him to do so, and he just seemed to grow more and more amused. This amusement, of course, screwed Nynaeve’s temper to a fever pitch.

Elayne’s studies of the ter’angreal from the Rahad are not going well, either; one makes her dizzy, another gives everyone around her a blinding headache, and while studying the crimson rod that “feels hot”, she wakes up the next morning with no memory of anything that had happened between. Almost everyone in the party seems extremely amused when they see her, but no one will tell her what she had done; Elayne decides to study the ter’angreal in greater privacy thenceforth. Nine days after leaving Ebou Dar it begins to rain and then snow, and they realize the party is completely unprepared clothes-wise for winter; Elayne, Nynaeve, Reanne, and Merilille all blame themselves, and actually argue with each other over who gets to claim the blame until the absurdity of the fight strikes them, and they end up laughing together. Aviendha eventually solves the problem by producing a sack of gemstones to trade for winter garments. Elayne asks Aviendha where she got them.

“Rand al’Thor tricked me,” Aviendha muttered sullenly. “I tried to buy my toh from him. I know that is the least honorable way,” she protested, “but I could see no other. And he stood me on my head! Why is it, when you reason things out logically, a man always does something completely illogical and gains the upper hand?”

“Their pretty heads are so fuzzy, a woman can’t expect to follow how they skitter,” Elayne told her. She did not inquire what toh Aviendha had tried to buy, or how the attempt had ended with her near-sister possessing a sack full of rich gems. Talking about Rand was hard enough without where that might lead.

Soon after this, Renaile decides she’s waited long enough, and demands both the Bowl of the Winds and Merilille, who is to be the first of the Aes Sedai teachers to the Windfinders, in fulfillment of the terms of their bargain. She orders Merilille out like a deckhand, and Merilille has no choice but to obey. Over the next few days it’s clear that the Windfinders consider Merilille’s status to be somewhere around Talaan and Metarra’s (i.e. very low), and Elayne notices that Merilille’s increasing obsequiousness to Renaile et al is having a distinct effect on the Kin, especially Alise and Sumeko.

More and more of the Kin slid from horrified gaping to thoughtful observation. Perhaps Aes Sedai were not a different flesh after all. If Aes Sedai were just women like themselves, why should they subject themselves once more to the rigors of the Tower, to Aes Sedai authority and Aes Sedai discipline? Had they not survived very well on their own, some for more years than any of the older sisters were quite ready to believe? Elayne could practically see the idea forming in their heads.

Nynaeve pooh-poohs the significance of this when Elayne mentions it to her, but then adds that perhaps they shouldn’t mention any of it to Egwene; Elayne agrees, not particularly eager to have her “nose snapped off” the way Egwene had when she found out about their bargain with the Sea Folk. Elayne knows it was proper of Egwene as the Amyrlin Seat to chastise them, but still hadn’t enjoyed being called a “witless loobie”, especially since she agrees. When they go to Tel’aran’rhiod, though, Egwene is not there; she’s left a message scratched into the wall of the old Amyrlin’s study in Salidar, telling them to stay in Caemlyn, and be “silent and careful”. Elayne leaves in return the number 15, to indicate her guess of how many days before they reach Caemlyn. Nynaeve grumbles about the difficulty of having to jump when Egwene snaps her fingers, when Nynaeve used to change her diapers; unable to resist, Elayne snaps her fingers, scaring Nynaeve half to death. Nynaeve gets her revenge the next morning by waking Elayne up with an icicle.

Three days later, the first explosion came.

Commentary
Aaaand the most awesome chapter in TPOD is immediately followed by the most boring one. At least so far.

Seriously, nothing happened. I… I have to come up with something to say about this, really? Sigh. Okay.

Well, there is the revelation of what is exactly is up with Nynaeve and Lan’s marriage vows, which I guess was much more interesting when I, you know, didn’t know about it yet. I do have to say that the arrangement makes quite a lot of sense culturally; the Sea Folk are not very high in my estimation these days, but this tradition strikes me as eminently reasonable—even if I couldn’t see conforming to it being feasible outside the cultural infrastructure it’s meant for. The Aes Sedai/Warder thing may constitute an exception, though. When you think about it it’s a really nice way to address the fundamental permanent unequalness that would by definition have to be in that relationship. Maybe Nynaeve will convince Egwene to do the same thing with Gawyn?

Also, Nynaeve’s protestation that Lan was “not really” taking advantage of the situation was pretty funny, I grant you. I also left out the bit about how she was freaking out about sneaking him off to haylofts whenever she got a chance, so okay, heh.

And then there is the infamous ter’angreal Hot Rod Incident, which naturally has always inspired the fandom to take to a MUCH dirtier place than I think Jordan ever meant to imply. I seem to recall that the post-TPOD online discussions about what could have happened there were nearly majestic in their prurient loopiness. Those crazy fans, I swear. Minds always in the gutter, you people!

We sort of find out by inference, by the way, what really happened in WH, when Birgitte expresses her intention of getting drunk enough to “take off [her] clothes and dance on the table”, which Aviendha finds hilarious in an in-joke kind of way. Which… okay, stripping in public is really somewhat dirty too, isn’t it, but still, I think the fandom had way more fun with this than Emily Post would approve of in a million years. Heh.

And… yeah, there’s nothing else here I care about enough to muster up commentary on. At least there’ll be a murder soon!


And we out, kiddie-kadanzies. Have a super-fun weekend, and I’ll see youse Tuesday!

279 comments
Tina A
2. Tinaa
Yay, Friday happiness!

Now to read the post...
Marcus W
3. toryx
Oh hey, I'm back from my vacation. Damn it.

Anyway, Leigh's post pretty much said it all. Awesome chapter followed by boring one. What else is there to comment on?
Richard Fife
4. R.Fife
So, I have a question. Why is "Kneel or you will be knelt" worse than "I tricked you with legal mumbo, now you are all my slaves". Because, isn't that what Egwene did? She decided that she knew better than these women old enough to be her grandmother and with (supposedly) vast political and worldly knowledge, so she used what was available to subjugate them and humiliate them at the same time.

Yet, the informed analysis of Dumai's Wells is that it was horrible and bad and the Law of War is praised? (and not just by you, Leigh, I was doing the same thing until a few moment ago when a few brain sparks lit fire). Maybe force of blades was not used, but force of law is just about as potent with Aes Sedai. And maybe Egwene isn't giving the AS to Wise Ones to humiliate her, but she also wasn't kidnapped and tortured, so perhaps it is just that the scale is on a slightly less severe scale? Hmm.
Andrew Belmont
5. rosetintdworld
Wall-o-Text warning (too excited about Chapter 19!):

YAY for Chapter 19, as I've been saying like every week since we started this book. YAY.

Jordan often has his politically-inclined characters talk about the deadly nature of "bloodless battles," as he calls politics. Sometimes I think he drops the ball a little in really showing us how serious these matters are--I'm thinking of Elayne's not-at-all climactic moment with the Borderlanders in WH--but this scene is a flawless example of excellent political tension. The pacing, the razor-sharp and perfectly placed dialogue, the fine balance between description, action, and speech, and the very believable way that Egwene's mind fixates on certain details to show how incredibly tense she is all combine to make an unbelievable page turner. Wow. Thank you, Mr. Jordan.

And that's not to mention how complex this scene gets later, after we know Sheriam, and--more interesting to me, actually--Moria's true allegiances. I know we'll never see Moria again, but she has always fascinated me. Unlike Delana, we never knew until after the fact why Moria was voting the way she did, and her votes in the Hall, here and in COT, have very interesting implications for the Shadow's goals.

Leigh, I always assumed that Delana freaked out because the Sitting prevented Delana from wielding the only power that kept her useful to Halima (and thus, probably, alive): the power of her vote. Note that she vomits due to Egwene's nullification of the Sitter's right to choose their vote--not when war is declared.

Takima, I had always just thought of as a perpetually startled woman who was a little too jittery to act quite fast enough for anything. Sometimes in the morning before I've had my coffee, I watch disasters happen in slow motion, too.

Chapter 20: Meh. Although this may be a topic for another post, I will say that I've always found the last line to be totally puzzling. Jordan orders his chapters in odd ways sometimes, but ending a chapter on a cliffhanger and then picking it back up after a six chapter interlude still seems baffling to me.

(edited for clarity)
chaplainchris
6. chaplainchris
Squee! I forgot we didn't give Leigh a week's vacation, I was thinking I'd have to wait 'til next Tuesday!
Matthew Smith
7. blocksmith
One of the things I find confusing from the first chapter is that Egwene clearly identifies Halima and Delana as being tight. She knows that Halima was provided by Delana to help her (Egwene) out. IIRC, Egwene realizes she is somewhat of a spy for Delana. But still, the relationship between the two is much different than that of the other AS who supplied there maids/spies.

To me, this should have been a bright shiny, flying high, flapping in the breeze red flag that something a little different was up with Halima(gar).

And I thought Delana vomiting was by far funniest thing in this re-read...yes, I am acknowledging I am enjoying her anguish a bit.

Everything else I have to agree with Leigh on, but I did like the quiet reveal in the second chapter as to the supposition of alternate oaths on the BA.
chaplainchris
8. Tenesmus
Top Ten? Yeah! Where is my monthly e-book art?!?!?! I want it NOW!!!!!
Maiane Bakroeva
9. Isilel
One thing I don't understand about the War Vote is - if Takima _didn't_ know, how was Egwene going to convince the Hall of the existence of the Law? Was she going to call up Siuan to testify? Bringing Siuan's Oath status under closer scrutiny?

Also, I remember really liking Moria here and later, when she sounded so sensible in the Hall. Of course, she turned out to be BA!

So, what were all these evil people up to? Why was Delana so dismayed, while Moria was pretty much unfazed? Did they work for different FS, perhaps? What instructions did Delana get from the ever-bumbling Halim'gar?

And yea, I don't get all the stress-vomiting that's so popular among WoT females...

Victory is sweet, though. A perfectly executed plot, which was, IIRC, largely Siuan's creation. Great chapter and truly the highlight of PoD!

"The Dragon Reborn was supposed to fight the Dark One at Shayol Ghul, _and he should be driven out of Andor_."

People who criticize Elayne for taking down Rand's banners and generally distancing herself from him, should really remember this tidbit!

Otherwise I don't understand why they are trudging through the landscape for weeks when they could Travel.
Sure, a few stops along the way to test the mood of the populace, fine, but drawing this out for weeks? And IIRC in one of the coming chapters Elayne even admits that she wasn't learning anything useful anymore...

And IMHO, the SGs should have tried to do something here to establish respectful treatment of AS teachers. But they leave Merillile to her fate. Too bad that neither of them is going to the Seafolk as a teacher - that would have been justice ;).
Raul Gallegos
10. Master_Asmodean
Another great post. I haven't read all of it yet, but would like to comment that Siuan is just plain super-cool. As has been said in prior comments of the re-read, her coolness got even better once she had to find her place all over again. As for Delana puking? I never figured that out except that perhaps she was one of those BA who did what she was told, but perhaps was not fully dedicated as many other BA. who knows. Lastly, I agree, neener neener neener on Romanda and Lelaine. They are just plain annoying.
chaplainchris
11. chaplainchris
Leigh - yep. I totally did.

But I gotta say, this reads differently (as you mentioned in the last re-read) with knowledge that Sheriam and Moria are Black. Moria's strong support, here, was always a point in her favor to me, as was her suggestion (in later books) of an alliance with the Black Tower. Knowing that the Shadow favored these things is...creepy.

Of course, Delana vomits upon hearing thtat Egwene's now in total command, so I'd guess that the Blacks went for the war vote to further division, but were caught off-guard by the realization that division between Salidar and Tar Valon might be bigger, but the divisions within the rebel camp would be tamped down.

In fact, Egwene's victory in this vote, and her subsequent war powers, are probably why the rebels didn't fracture to nearly the degree that the Tower sisters did. (Note that they began splintering after Egwene was taken captive!) Egwene's war powers put a lid on many of the fights between Lelaine and Romanda, with Delana playing both sides against the middle. So...victory for the Light here, neener-neener, Darkfriends! Start getting ready for a stilling and an axe!

Takima's silence - interesting thoughts, Leigh. I wondered that too, but think I attributed it to her fussiness about following the law and customs. Egwene's supposed to speak on her proposal before anyone else, and with Romanda's abrupt call for a vote, perhaps she felt she couldn't speak out without violating procedures?

Siuan sullenly pouting is fun. Her gallows humor is fun, too.

Nynaeve waiting for the shoe to drop with Lan - priceless. I love Nynaeve, and it's so *her* to get herself tied in knots because Lan's *not* behaving badly!

Nyn, Elayne, Merilille, and Reanne arguing in the snow about who's to blame is great.

Aviendha sullenly pouting about Rand tricking her into a fortune is also awesome.

I must not get annoyed with this plotline until next book?

Witless loobie...funny. Elayne snapping her fingers...great! Nynaeve retaliating with icicle...not bad.

And that's all I got. I suspect reading the funny bits from the commentary was more entertaining than reading the actual chapter.

I guess the next chapter is the murder of Ispan and Adeleas? *sigh* One of my least favorite mysteries. One, because I don't think we were ever given the information to be able to deduce who did it - which is valid but unsatisfying; and two, as a grief counsellor I was so annoyed with how many fans found Vandene's presentation of grief so un-convincing, when I think RJ captured it really well. (But more on this next time - for now, suffice it to say that people grieve differently, and one of the biggest conflicts in families is when one family member doesn't see the validity in another family member's method.)
Jonathan Lynn
12. kreeble
@ 9:

I too have never understood the AS penchant for Travelling to a point multiple days away rather than like, 30 minutes outside of town. And you would think that Elayne, worried about the tension the travel is causing, would opt to get to Caemlyn sooner (even moreso as she realizes that she isnt in a great position politically anymore)


And I must confess, I cant seem to wrap my head fully around the implications that the Law brings with it. So Egwene is now in supreme command of all things relating to the war, good. And the Hall now is forced to stand in agreement every time? Im not sure what sort of legitimacy derives from that, and never mind the fact that the Hall is still free to drag their asses on any non-war agenda.
j p
13. sps49
I do note, now, that Egwene keeping her Keeper (Sheriam) in the dark was a good idea. I wonder if she has had nagging doubts since the Gray Man episode? since she is one with evidence that the Black Ajah does exist, for reals, y'all.
Bonnie Andrews
14. misfortuona
Yay post, and for this awsome chapter. Thanks Leigh, and yep I'm positive I cheered aloud when I read this chapter the first time, and I might even have thrown in a neener or two.

RFife
So, I have a question. Why is "Kneel or you will be knelt" worse than "I tricked you with legal mumbo, now you are all my slaves". Because, isn't that what Egwene did? She decided that she knew better than these women old enough to be her grandmother and with (supposedly) vast political and worldly knowledge, so she used what was available to subjugate them and humiliate them at the same time.


Well cause it just is. That's why. ;P

Seriously I don't see a comparison at all between the two situations. First of all Rand isn't the one saying kneel, and secondly Egwene hasn't made these women into slaves. In fact as we find out later she is limited to control in those things that are directly related to the war.
The AS under Egwene, at least for now, have not sworn directly to obey her.

Mis-off to drop off brownies and appies at the bunker.
chaplainchris
15. Looking Glass
On Delana being ill: For one, her instructions from Halima would certainly include “let me know about anything big ahead of time”. For another, this may be the moment she realized that they had raised someone far, far outside the expected “malleable little girl” specifications, and hey, now she’s running everything. It’s likely her reaction is sort of a time-compressed version of the same “oh crap” Sheriam’s been experiencing.

Speaking of which, I think Sheriam’s comments at the beginning are, in fact, genuine in their content, but more of a “when did this happen?” than the (false) congratulations you seem to indicate.
-

R.Fife@4: One, even for Aes Sedai, there is a big difference between legal maneuvering and coercion by deadly force.

Two, there’s likewise a difference between “I set tower policy, not you” and “you will obey all my orders about anything, period, and I’m handing you over to the wise ones until you learn your place”.

Three, Lelaine and Romanda may have been embarrassed, but only by Egwene saying that they will be appropriately respectful to their ruler, or face the appropriate discipline. Just like any other Amyrlin would have. More broadly, she’s not forcing them to accept any new obligations, but simply to honor the ones they’ve already accepted (obey the law, respect your lawfully elected ruler, etc). And if they’d been living up to that in the first place, Egwene wouldn’t have needed to say anything.

Four, by extension, Egwene had a good reason for her actions here- she really has to exert this level of authority to do her job properly. Rand, by contrast, didn’t really have any reason to demand the Aes Sedai swear to serve him, except that he apparently expects everyone to serve him.

Five, “kneel or you will be knelt” also included the rebel emissaries, who might’ve been obnoxious but didn’t really do anything heinous to deserve it. Except Alanna, I guess.
-

Isilel@9: Takima: There’s a difference between “can confirm that when it’s brought up” and “sees it coming and mentions it ahead of time”; Egwene’s afraid of the latter. Also, if no one in the hall knew, they could probably have sent out for a tower law specialist.
-

ChaplainChris@11: Hilariously, I think Aviendha still hasn’t realized that the blade Rand kept was basically priceless, and the fancy hilt was silly window dressing.

Also, I don't think it’s quite explicitly proven, but it’s nearly certain that Careane killed Adeleas and Ispan. She's certainly black. Vandene ends up killing her for it.
-

kreeble@12: The justification given for the Traveling thing is that if they pop up randomly in the area near a big city, there’s a moderate chance of cutting someone in half, so when they don’t have an exact spot to travel to, they go for the more sparsely inhabited regions instead. Which actually seems reasonable.
Birgit
16. birgit
Takima may have a good memory for books she has read, but it is strange that she remembers the exact words of some obscure law.

Too bad that neither of them is going to the Seafolk as a teacher - that would have been justice ;).

Nynaeve does have to teach them sometimes.
Bonnie Andrews
17. misfortuona
Oh Delana, I think her response was a bit WTF, as well.
But as to why. If the FS had ordered her to drag out the conflict between the Salidar AS and the TV AS, then having a single person in charge of one side, and one apparently far more capable than anyone ever thought, could be seen as a failure on her part.
Bad Delana, the FS will now punish you for your failure. Yep, that might be a stressful thing.

Mis-musing
a a-p
18. lostinshadow
re Takima: maybe she was afraid that she'd be outed if she suddenly argued so strongly against the Amrylin and was kinda hoping that one of the other placeholder sitters would figure something was up from her depressed expression and actually bother asking what else the Law on War entailed before voting on the issue.

I too repeat the question of what Eggs and Siuan had planned if no one could quote the Law on War.

no comment on beginning of Andoran throne plot line.

didn't have a problem with kneel or be knelt, don't have a problem with Eggs' (Siuan's really) political maneuvering.


mmmmm brownieess... love chocolate
Jacy Clark
19. Amalisa
Oh, yes... I do love the smack-down. The shoe dropping. The ka-ka hitting the fan. The if-we-were-in-prison-you-guys-would-be-like-my-bitches moment. Hooray Egwene!!! Take that Romanda and Lelaine!

Leigh, your explanation for Takima's surprising silence is one of those a ha! moments for me. I just figured that, once Egwene made the motion, Takima's hands were pretty much tied. That she hoped it was all a bad dream and would just go away but, once asked specifically about the Rule of War, she was pretty much roped in and had to go with it. What you said makes a lot more sense... *nods*

R.Fife, good question. My answer is that the Law of War was established sometime way back in the Tower's history for (I presume) a reason similar to this. When the Tower had to go to war and one person had to be the one to direct that war. Takima knew the Law. If the other Sitters had not bothered, at some point in their time as Aes Sedai, to learn it - well, ignorance of the law is no defense. And, yes, Egwene humiliated them - although, I don't think it was done maliciously. I'm with Leigh on this. Karma. Like Siuan said, way back in LoC, "the plump little grunter for the table turns out to be a live silverpike as long as your leg". The humiliation meted out here by Egwene is chicken feed compared to the way RoLaine and their contingents have treated her - largely because it wasn't done to humiliate them. It was done to establish Egwene as the Amyrlin-in-fact. As for their "vast political and worldly knowledge" - yes, they had that. Unfortunately, their heads were too far up their collective butts to effectively use that knowledge. Egwene also had the advantage of "big picture" kind of knowledge that the rest did not have - especially considering her time with Rand and the Aiel, the Seanchan, what she knew from her meetings with Elayne and Nynaeve in T'a'R. Far more than the Hall, she had the conviction born of witnessing things first hand that the White Tower was soon going to have much bigger fish to fry, and that they needed to get Elaida out of the way and the Tower reunited first. The Hall, it seems to me, was still laboring under the illusion that whatever else might be happening in the world, it could wait until they were good and damn ready to deal with it. So, if she had to resort to legal mumbo-jumbo and a little humiliation to get the ball rolling, so be it. Okay, it is a "the-end-justifies-the-means" argument, but so is much of what happens in this series, if you think about it. I have no problem with it. (I should also point out that I really didn't have a big problem with the "kneel or be knelt" thing either. People screw up. There are consequences. Done.)

Isilel - Yes, the stress-vomiting and the fainting. I don't understand either one. I would like to agree with you re Traveling vs walking/riding - especially in such terrible weather. But I can see the importance of gathering first-hand information about the state of the realm, as well as getting a sense of the mood of the common people. Incovenient, yes, but I think it was a politically astute thing for Elayne to do.

But while on the subject of the travelogue chapter... it had some fun things in it. Birgitte's yeah-right-Kandori-shrug thing. Nynaeve and Lan, Nynaeve and Alise, Alise and everyone else. I do have to wonder at the wisdom of the village folk who will take jewels only over jewels and gold. The Hot Rod - and I am grateful that the explanation about the dancing-naked-on-the-table has been provided. Now I can scour my brain clean of all the other theories that have been forwarded over the years. Sheesh! And the foreshadowing of Verin's oath:
Vandene said they were beginning to fear she (Ispan) had taken an Oath - the capital was audible - against betraying her cohorts.


chaplainchris - The next four chapters are Rand fighting the Seanchan. We get back to the Caemlyn-or-bust folk in eight.

Edit for stuff.
chaplainchris
20. Subbak
re: people who think the war vote is unethical, I'd say the hall pretty much deserved it.
Basically, you receive a proposition that involves an old law you know nothing about, and you know taht you are clueless about it because some aspect you were totally ignorant of was just quoted.
Making a decision in these circumstances is just plain impossible. Therefore if the Hall wants to vote, they basically ask for any nasty side effects they may get. And they are supposed to be expert politicians, so I won't blame Egwene for not offering to give them the info beforehand : they could have asked for it.

re: Takima, I believe she could have kept silent partly because she's a doormat, and partly because of the Brown appeal to press on the end of the world button just to see what it will do...

Also, since we were discussing retconing Black Ajah votes yesterday... If we remove Moria and Delanna, we're one short. So much for Miss bare-minimum-with-black-ajah-means-illegitimate. And the greater consensus was then obtained by coercion so would not count.
Matthew Smith
21. blocksmith
Kreeble@12

Think of it kind of like Martial Law. In case of an emergency (natural disaster, invasion, illness outbreak, 2000 lbs hamsters running in the streets) the government is allowed to impose martial law that restricts certain liberties we normally enjoy.

In this case, when waging war, the Amyrlin, acting as Supreme Commander, must be obeyed by the greater consensus. Thus creating a single point of leadership from which the strategy of that war is dictated. The normal democratic process is suspended until such time as the war is ended. Think Star Wars, end of Episode 2 beginning of Episode 3.
Roger Powell
22. forkroot
Isilel@9
Also, I remember really liking Moria here and later, when she sounded so sensible in the Hall. Of course, she turned out to be BA!

And we were supposed to be surprised? C'mon! Her name was M-O-R-I-A ... It's like having an character named "Diablo", chances are pretty good he'll turn out to be a bad guy.
Barry T
23. blindillusion
And we have:
Then Lelaine answers that the Hall does not declare war on individuals.
And then, per Egwene's thoughts:
The last time the Tower itself actually declared war had been against Artur Hawkwing.
. Meh, I asked sometime in the past…just what is the point of Lelaine again? Really, does she do anything to prove she’s worthy of being a Sitter, not to mention being in the running for the Amyrlin Seat? And, umm, I’m really asking here. I don’t readily recall anything anywhere that shows Lelaine as being something other than an out of control mouthpiece.

I suppose her main point is to be stop to Romanda from completely tying Egwene into a pretty little bow of a figurehead?
chaplainchris
24. AndrewB
Leigh, great post as always.
"Takima: Awesomeness of the scene aside, the one thing that always rather puzzled me about the War Vote is why Takima didn’t say anything to warn the others about the trick Egwene was pulling. ... Basically, she had double the reason to pipe up as any of the others, and yet she didn’t. Why?"

As we found out in TGS, Takima was one of the pre-split Sitters who were ordered to Salidar by the Ajah heads. These Sitters were supposed to lay the groundwork for the reconcilliation with the Tower. However, the Ajah heads noted that some of these Sitters in fact switched their allegence to the Salidar cause. (This was the chapter after the Seanchan invasion where the Ajah heads decide that Egwene should be Amyrlin. I do not remember the specific chapter number and am at work with no source to cite.)

Takima's silence as to the procedure for the Law of War could have been a result of her switch in loyalties.

Isilel @9 re the characters march through Andor. IMO, Elayne wanted to take the opportunity to assess the situation from the commoners perspective. This is reflected in the different rumors she heard. It also made her realized that House Trankand was not as popular as it once had been. Remember, Morgase had used to wander around the populace to learn what the commoners thought.

Thanks for reading my musings.
AndrewB
chaplainchris
25. chaplainchris
@15 on Careane - Oh, I agree, and think it quite explicitly...um, implied....oh, heck, what I mean is, RJ wouldn't have had Vandene sa "a gift from Adeleas" when killing Careane unless we were meant to conclude that.

My dissatisfaction with the mystery is not that we don't get an answer *cough Asmodean cough*. It's that we're not given narrative clues to enable us to deduce it prior to the reveal. The only things we know are that it's a sister, not because it logically must be, but because the author has the characters tell us it must be. And apparently they're right.

WOT is amazing, and it doesn't purport to be a mystery novel - which is good, b/c as a mystery novel it would be annoying. (As here; as with the red herrings of Taimandred that for awhile seemed *intended* to mislead - fine here, but not ok for a mystery; as with Asmodean's "obvious" murderer.)
Noneo Yourbusiness
26. Longtimefan
Wasn't "Sullenly, Siuan" a TV show with Brooke Shields?

Does that mean that Gareth Byrne is Judd Nelson?

Therefore Sheriam is Kathy Griffin.

Who knew that the Rebel Aes Sedai were just trying to put out a newspaper in San Francisco. The similarites are astounding.
Maiane Bakroeva
28. Isilel
Looking Glass @15:

if no one in the hall knew, they could probably have sent out for a tower law specialist.

Who could have blown the whistle on the other aspects of the War Law before the voting took place? Doesn't seem like a good idea, even if there was such an expert in the camp.

As to Travelling - well a day out of a big city there should be more than enough sparse areas. To make it even safer re: innocent bystanders they could Travel at night and make a small hole to look around first. And also, Rand and the Asha'man Travel exactly where they intend to go all the time and they haven't killed anybody yet. So, yea, this always seemed like a device to unnecessarily and illogically draw things out to me...

P.S. Yes, Elayne was getting the feel of the populace's mood. But she still could have gotten that by Travel-jumping and in much shorter time. And BTW, IIRC in the coming chapter she'll also think to herself that she'd given up on learning anything useful, yet they'll continue to trudge through the snow (!) even after that. Le Sigh.

Couldn't agree more re: the rather strange comparison with Rand. The situations aren't similar at all, IMHO.
Eugenie Delaney
29. EmpressMaude
birgit@16

Takima may have a good memory for books she has read, but it is strange that she remembers the exact words of some obscure law.

I think the gist of that bit was to suggest that Takima has a photographic memory, not that the WOT people would call it that.
chaplainchris
30. Subbak
blindillusion@23: The tower probably declared war on AH's empire, not the man himself, and Egwene was mentally using synecdoche.
However, they cannot declare war on the White Tower (cause duh...), so they have to satisfy themselves with Elaida.
chaplainchris
31. Hrothgordo
Egwene’s use of the Law of War is surely one of her best MoAs.


I view Takima’s silence/hesitation in warning the Hall of the specifics of the law as a combination of things.

First she is simply undecided on how she wants this meeting to go herself. She sees the trick coming but thinks that Egwene will apparently talk a big game but is apparently hunkering down the camp. But if she divulges the Law then the meeting is going to end with either Lelaine or Romanda in charge. Essentially a coin flip for reconciliation.

Secondly, I think all Browns must at some level want the smart kid to beat the ignorant bully



Delanaa on the other hand was just totally screwed.

It’s pretty obvious that her role within the Hall was to keep everyone at each others throats. The vote for War was simply to keep Egwene’s minority party in the game. The DO and Forsaken want to keep the dissension going.

But when the truth comes out, it means that she has galvanized Egwene’s leadership of the rebels. That’s the kind of stuff the DO pays off with really long torture sessions and death. No wonder she vomited.



As you do the re-read, I keep forgetting how awesome Gareth is in this book. He is like a cross between Lan and Thom. Loyal but not blind, courageous but not stupid.



Second chapter . . . yeah . . . uhmm . . . it happened.
Barry T
32. blindillusion
Wouldn't declaring war on a man's Empire be declaring war on the man? The buck stops with him, after all.

And the Rebels could have declared war on the Tower by the simple statement: "The White Tower allowed an usurper to take the Amyrlin Seat."

Also, my post was mainly wordplay in an effort for someone to paint Lelaine with, at the very least, the Competent Brush. She’s very much in the running for the Most Useless Plot Device Award. I mean, is she nothing other than the anti- Romanda?
Lannis .
33. Lannis
Delana vomits on the floor... BAHAHAhahaha!

Oh, and I agree with Rosetintdworld @ 5: I just figured Delana was sick because now she wouldn't be useful to Halima.

Yes, Egwene is awesome! Love it!

Oy, Elayne recounting boring goings-on.

Re: Minds in the gutter... ::raises guilty hand:: Nynaeve and Lan's peculiar marriage arrangement. Okay, so, maybe my mind is stuck on Dirty Mode, but Lan never taking advantage, or "not really," according to Nynaeve, just sounds dirty to me. I can't help it. ::sheepish shrug::

Thanks for the post, Leigh! Have a great weekend!
Roger Powell
34. forkroot
In defense of Chapter 20, sometimes it's nice to have a little salad between bites of meat.

Sometimes it's nice to have a little poi between bites of Kalua pork ::nods to BillinHI::

Quiet "setup" chapters help pace the story and give it a ... ::searches for the right word:: "fullness", I dunno.

You want action every chapter? Go read (uggh!) Dan Brown.
D R
35. Ouroboros
Moria and Delana both stand for the declaration which makes sense given that they are trying to increase the division. Delana’s nausea may be because she is one of those Blacks who doesn’t like the idea of harming the Tower as a whole. She throws up after she finds out that Egwene is now unstoppable, which is really going to go down well with Halima.

I also don't understand why Takima keeps quiet. I almost wonder if it was just RJ trying to up the tension without actually dive bombing the plan.

Speaking of the wisdom of the thing, it works in the short term, since Egwene now has totalitarian control of all war related matters, but there are bound to be long term come backs. No one likes to be made a fool of, and that's exactly what Egwene did to the whole Hall. In fact, in CoT it's clear that Egwene's hold his starting to slip and those come backs are on the way. Of course, her kidnapping gives them something else to worry about for a while. It will be interesting to see how the political landscape is shaping in ToM, although, we may be done with Tower politics now.

Looking Glass @ 15:

"Three, Lelaine and Romanda may have been embarrassed, but only by Egwene saying that they will be appropriately respectful to their ruler, or face the appropriate discipline."

They have just been tricked into having to accept Egwene's authority without question. That's not going to go down well.

"More broadly, she’s not forcing them to accept any new obligations, but simply to honor the ones they’ve already accepted (obey the law, respect your lawfully elected ruler, etc)."

The Hall normally debates matters and they both have a say in that. They have now been told that they must obey without question. This sounds like a new obligation.

"Five, “kneel or you will be knelt” also included the rebel emissaries, who might’ve been obnoxious but didn’t really do anything heinous to deserve it. Except Alanna, I guess."

Except meddling in Andoran politics to force Rand out; turning up in the throne room and trying to intimidate him with the power, not to mention issuing an outright threat; and sending 9 sisters after Rand told them he would meet six. Obnoxious indeed.

birgit @ 16: Photographic memory. *waves at EmpressMaude*

AndrewB @ 24: I'd forgotten that Takima was a Tower mole. Surely this would make it more likely that she would speak up. Also, she was weeping after the vote. I really don't think she wanted this thing to happen. Strange.
Maiane Bakroeva
36. Isilel
Blindillusion @32:

I felt that NS the novel was a missed chance to give Lelaine and some other influential AS a bit of a background. Maybe Egwene will finally proceed to checking the competences and prior achievements of her subordinates and somebody will tell her?

Well, at least in KoD, Lelaine was the only AS not in Egwene's trusted/oath-bound circle who had figured out Siuan's true role. Whether it is a claim to fame...

And speaking of Team Evil - OK, Delana's role was to keep everybody at each other's throats, but what was Moria's? She didn't seem unduly dismayed by the vote.
I remember reading an interesting theory somewhere that Moria was serving another FS and that she was thwarting Halim'gar on that FS's orders, in subtle ways. Alliance with the BT, for instance, couldn't have been in H'gar's interests, whatever the benefits to the Shadow...
chaplainchris
37. Subbak
Isilel@36 : Or maybe Moria was simply unguided... You can't expect the FS to know the full organigram of the BA, unless they were told by Alviarin. And Mesaana and Aran'gar are in different FS alliances, so maybe she just held that info thinking she'd have some cards in hand later if need be, and that the general "Let's split the tower" plan could be carried out by Aran'gar with a less black sisters anyway.
Bonnie Andrews
38. misfortuona
Forkroot@34
It's wonderful of you to fill in for Wetlander as devil's advocate. Even chapters need someone to stick up for them.

Mis-PR representive to the assistant DA
Maiane Bakroeva
39. Isilel
Subbak @37:

Well, somebody directed H'gar to Delana. And Delana had the name Aran'gar told to her "in dreams". So I suspect that there was one FS that did know the organigram, at least in part - Ishy. I kind of suspect that Moria was Mesaana's and that she was working against H'gar, because the Triple Alliance didn't like her in charge of the SAS.
While Ishy in collaboration with Shaidar Haran directed H'gar to Delana and Sheriam. Or maybe H'gar learned of Sheriam from Delana? IIRC, they were of similar age and may have been in the same heart.

And also... didn't H'gar boast somewhere that Egwene was fully under her thumb? If she believed that, then what did the War vote matter? Or was it just hot air?
Henry Loose
40. schrodinger
Looking Glass@15 Four, by extension, Egwene had a good reason for her actions here- she really has to exert this level of authority to do her job properly. Rand, by contrast, didn’t really have any reason to demand the Aes Sedai swear to serve him, except that he apparently expects everyone to serve him.

Rand has a perfectly good reason to have them swear to serve him. They think they know more than him, and how to fight the last battle better than him (although, surprisingly, the only Aes Sedai who actually seem to have a game plan for Tarmon Gaidon are Cadsuane, who is trying to make Rand ready, and Nynaeve, who sent Lan into the borderlands) and by virtue of who HE is (the Dragon Reborn) he has every right to expect obedience, or at the very least, people not working against him at every turn, which, unfortunately, the Aes Sedai do, intentionally or unintentionally. They are a roadblock on his road to success at Tarmon Gai'don, and thus, must be moved aside.
Roger Powell
41. forkroot
Mis@38
LOL! I almost said something about assuming Wetlandernw's role when I composed that post.

Worm@35
AndrewB @ 24: I'd forgotten that Takima was a Tower mole. Surely this would make it more likely that she would speak up. Also, she was weeping after the vote. I really don't think she wanted this thing to happen. Strange.

Not sure I'd use the term "Tower mole" since she certainly wasn't taking orders from Elaida. For better or worse, the Ajah heads cooked up their plot in anticipation of some sort of reconciliation. The guidelines that Takima et al were under were to slow down or prevent anything that would make the schism deeper.

So Takima would have to have thought quickly and not only realize what Egwene was up to, but that she (Takima) would need to speak up to stop it. When you have someone operating under false pretenses, they will tend to be a little more passive if caught unaware by circumstances.

She probably regretted not speaking up, but the moment had passed. Don't we all have such regrets?
Valentin M
42. ValMar
Delana is a curious case. She had a POV in the chapter where she met Ha'gar and we learned she was BA. Just prior to seeing Ha'gar her thoughts were definitely not BA style. She was seeing Siuan, IIRC, and was being very kind outwardly and inwardly. Again- IIRC.
This shows that DFs are very disparate bunch indeed.

PS. Of course we have Ingtar, but we got his "official testimony" and he is rather straightforward.
chaplainchris
43. Looking Glass
Isilel@28: They wouldn’t have had to send out for a legal specialist in advance, just after the war vote. And that’s assuming no-one else in the hall remembered the content of the law. Heck, Egwene herself must have found out from someone other then Takima, so clearly there was someone else in the camp who could confirm it as fact (probably Suian, who’s still widely presumed to be under Oath).
-

Traveling: I’m going off their comments to Mat about the trip to Ebou Dar. Who knows how accurate that is, but they seemed to think a week’s travel was an acceptable safe distance. But you’re right, they could have worked out a way around that, like opening gates way above ground first. Of course, then you get weird questions like how they always manage to put gates at ground level even when they’ve got no clue where they’re going, but anyway.

Rand and Co. usually try to travel to pre-cleared sites unless they’re in some particular hurry. And there’s no guarantee that there's no chance of killing someone accidentally just because they haven’t yet.

But yes, meta-fictionally, it’s almost certainly just Jordan’s way of making sure his timing lines up right.
--

Birgit@16: It’s actually not that surprising Takima knows the words- given how Aes Sedai especially like to slip through loopholes in the letter of statements, any Aes Sedai legist would pretty much need to know the letter of the law.
--

blindillusion@32: They could certainly declare war on the Tower if they wanted to, but Egwene certainly doesn’t want to. She wants Elaida overthrown with minimal collateral damage.

Lelaine seems little more than an annoying obstacle, but to be fair, I thought the same about Romanda until she connected the dots on Delana and Halima.
--

Ouroborous@35: I thought about bringing it up, but decided any embarrassment they feel about being outmaneuvered politically doesn’t really enter into the moral comparison about this vs Rand’s forced kneeling.
-

The Hall normally debates matters and they both have a say in that. They have now been told that they must obey without question. This sounds like a new obligation.


R&L voluntarily accepted their responsibility to uphold Tower law, all of it, long before Egs came on the scene. This is just a subset of that: when the tower goes to war, you obey those laws applicable to war. Even if R&L didn’t know what the laws were, they had previously agreed to follow them. By contrast, the Aes Sedai at Dumai’s Wells had never previously accepted an obligation to swear fealty to Rand under any circumstances, and wouldn’t have done so there without coercion.
-

And yeah, the rebel emissaries were a pain in Rand’s rear, but I wouldn’t describe any of the stuff they did as “heinous and meriting karmic comeuppance” the way Rand-in-a-box or Alanna’s forced bonding did.
--

Schrodinger@40: Yes, Rand needs the Aes Sedai to follow him to war, but it’s not clear that he needs a king’s level of authority rather than merely a general’s. Here Egwene isn't insisting on any more authority that she's legally entitled to by her position.

(The whole blackmail-fealty thing vs. Sheriam & Co. is different, and is a bit morally gray, but I'm only talking about this scene here.)
D R
44. Ouroboros
Weed @ 41

Ajah Head Conspiracy Agent Provocateur if you prefer. Bit of a mouthful, though. I don't know, I try to keep the word count down and then... :)

"When you have someone operating under false pretenses, they will tend to be a little more passive if caught unaware by circumstances."

There's something in that I suppose. Still, she's crying which suggests that she really was upset by the outcome and really didn't want it to happen. I'd have just expected her to be a little more proactive if she really wanted to stop it, though. In stead, she seems to have gone into some kind of temporary shock. That Aes Sedai training is really working out for them. :)

From here on in, I'm calling the White Tower the Hen Coop.
Antoni Ivanov
45. tonka
TRAVELING. There are a few types of traveling, Rand and most Asha'man can travel to any spot safely without killing or damaging anyone (like Logain stepping on the ship in KOD, all the windfinders were astonished that he didn't managed to damage anything and Harine's Windfinder points out that she thinks she might be able to do that, but she is not sure, she can travel but not this way) But AT this point the women don't know how to travel this way. Their traveling is much more rough and imprecise. Rand had Lews Therin and it was most likely easy for him to remember/figure it out. While the women have to do it by themselves. The women don't know how to travel that safe type of traveling that the men can. That's why the women have to travel in a safe, isolated place (days from Ebou Dar, days from Caemlyn) while the men don't. But I am pretty certain the Women have figured it out by KOD though.
Susan Brownhill
46. SusanB
Re: The Law of War

If none of the sitters knew the Law of War they could have gone to the tower library using TAR and looked it up. So, Egwene didn't need any of the sitters to know the law at the moment of the vote.
Maiane Bakroeva
47. Isilel
Well, if the Sitters refused to believe that the Law of War can't be shelved, it could have become messy...

That's why the women have to travel in a safe, isolated place (days from Ebou Dar, days from Caemlyn)

Days? Even around a modern city you'd find a safe, isolated place closer than that. And not only is Randland about at the level of the 17th century technologically (minus guns), it is also sparsely populated. _One_ day should be more than enough, if you have a map.

And BTW, Logain could see the deck of the ship and IIRC male Travelling isn't safer than female one, it is just used far more sensibly. They do know the trick of Travelling within the line of sight, but it is a different matter.

Schrodinger @40:

Nothing says that the Dragon should also be the Supreme Leader. Rand interprets it that way, sure, but TGS shows that he may have been moving in the wrong direction.
He had no legal authority to force an embassy (!) to swear to him, particularly after they have risked their lives fighting for him.
He didn't like that there were more of them than he had specified? He could have sent them packing. The only one who he had justification in demanding this from was Alanna.
chaplainchris
49. Subbak
re: safe Traveling, IIRC Forsaken don't bother with precautions traveling to each other's places. Of course, innocent bystanders don't matter much to them (although it may stain the carpet), but slicing in half you buddy from the Quirky Miniboss Squad may not amuse the Dark One...

So I guess there is a way of traveling, used in the AoL, that avoided hitting people with gates.
Bonnie Andrews
50. misfortuona
Latest FB post from BWS:

Okay, spellcheck done, revisions sent in to Team Jordan. Things are looking very good for the TofM deadlines.

Mis-happiness abounds

[i]darn e where did you go?
Henry Loose
51. schrodinger
Isilel@47 Nothing says that the Dragon should also be the Supreme Leader. Rand interprets it that way, sure, but TGS shows that he may have been moving in the wrong direction.
He had no legal authority to force an embassy (!) to swear to him, particularly after they have risked their lives fighting for him.
He didn't like that there were more of them than he had specified? He could have sent them packing. The only one who he had justification in demanding this from was Alanna.


I'm fairly certain that the survival of humanity is justification enough. As for the legal authority, well, that little part of the prophecies about breaking all ties and bonds seems to apply here. Also, Rand is not so much a person, but a force of nature at this point. If he chooses to break a few laws to ensure the survival of humanity by putting some people in their place, then so be it. Anyway, Rand know that by giving a group of people as manipulative as Aes Sedai even a little power over you (such as showing defiance by bringing more people than they were told to bring), they can eventually gain more, and will exploit you until they have complete control over you. Rand has zero tolerance. You cross him, you pay. Simple. Also, I happen to be a little more cynical about why they came to his aid... as we see them trying to establish themselves as THE authority trying to rescue Rand, when the force they are leading actually consists of Two Rivers men, and is actually under Perrin's command. Then there are the wise ones and the rest of the Aiel as well as Dobraine. The Aes Sedai simply do not understand their new place in the world created by the coming of the Dragon Reborn. They think they are his superiors. They need to learn otherwise, that they are equal to male channelers now.

Edit: True, there is nothing that states that Rand needs to be supreme ruler, but it makes a whole lot of sense that he should be. (oops. In my list of competent AS, I forgot Verin and her 70 year plan).
Hugh Arai
52. HArai
Egwene vs the Rebel Hall: Live by the legal technicality, die by the legal technicality.
Egwene was made Amyrlin, the Amyrlin has those rights by the Law of War and the Hall is bound to it. Siuan and Egwene were smart enough to make it work, full marks to them.

Rand and "kneel or be knelt": Unfortunately the behavior of the Aes Sedai, all the Aes Sedai have made it clear to Rand that any of them are quite likely to be at best twisting outcomes he's trying to achieve and at worst actively opposing him. As a result, he took steps when he had the upper hand. Same as he did with the Tairens and Cairhienin. Is forced obedience better than willing aid? Of course not. But you can count the Aes Sedai that give Rand willing aid on the thumbs of one hand.
Roger Powell
53. forkroot
Subbak@49
So I guess there is a way of traveling, used in the AoL, that avoided hitting people with gates.
Maybe, but in the TGS prologue Graendal curses when a gateway opens in her sanctum and nearly takes the arm off of one of her pets. So it seems more like the Forsaken are indifferent to casualties.
chaplainchris
54. Subbak
forkroot@53: Shouldn't a FS be missing an arm by now then? Or do they spend all day in chair that never moves, with assigned gate spots for their various co-plotters should they decide to arrive at the same time?

Also, if it were not possible to avoid it, it would make for a very good way to kill another FS and claim it was an accident to get away with it...
Hugh Arai
55. HArai
Subbak@54: Sure, as long as you figure you can lie about it to the DO and have him believe you...
Hugh Arai
56. HArai
Schrodinger@51:

Coming soon:
Egwene: You have to do what I say! I'm the Amyrlin Seat!
Rand: So?
Egwene: You wool-head!
Rand: Temper, temper...
chaplainchris
57. Rand Al'Todd
Re taking control - Kneeling to Rand vs the War Powers

I agree that the War Powers are part of what any AS signed up for when they signed the Novice Book.

Oath to Rand, IIRC was tav'aren at work. Not exactly fair but the Pattern weaving.

Re Rand and the RIGHT to lead:

My problem with ALL the folks trying to manipulate Rand is that NONE of them have presented a PLAN for handling TG and fighting the DO.

Elaida wanted him in a box, to be broken into a good little Da'covale, willing to obey any order, (nice irony there, of course, Suffa) and stored in a warehouse room in the WT until needed but she never mentioned HOW she would use him.

Eqwene maybe wants to help, but seems to be buying into the "AS know-all" attitude, but no POV shows
HER having a clue of WHAT to do.

Caddy apparently knows some of the affects of Taint madness and thinks she knows something of the state of mind he needs to be in, but she also has not stated ANY actual PLAN for what to do.
(I still think she has one, via Norla - Looney Theory(TM).)

FANS know about LTT's memories of the STRIKE but READERS don't. And RJ has essentially said that the STRIKE was doomed to fail even if the females assisted (or at least that both parts of the One Power would have been tainted).

Also we (the READERS) speculate that Min's reading of Haral Feld's notes, or Moraine, back from the 'Finn (with more info???) will help. But no real clue has been presented on WHAT TO DO!

All WE the READERS, have been told is that RAND himself has some limited knowledge from his questions to the 'Finn (die first, ask questions later...), but he has not mentioned anything about what he actually intends to DO.

No one else, especially the ones WANTING to control/guide him, have given us ANY indication what they would actually have him do.

(Except Lanfear, who wanted to use the keys with him to "challenge the D0 with that much power".)

How can so many people want to control/guide the savior of the Age, without ever indicating, even to themselves, what their plan/guidance entails?
They don't explain it to him (to convince him), they don't explain it to a sidekick or Pawn (just so us Readers can marvel at their plan). None of them seem to HAVE a plan!!! But they want to lead...

Sounds like too many RL politicians.
Henry Loose
58. schrodinger
HArai@56

I've been waiting for that for four books now. I have a feeling it will be one of the funnier parts.
Hugh Arai
59. HArai
Rand al'Todd@57:

Well said. I hope Cadsuane really does have a plan just because it's the only thing I could see that justifies the way she acts. I also wonder what plan Tuon is following...
Henry Loose
60. schrodinger
Perhaps, something we are forgetting, myself included, is that saying the great captains are fond of saying (something along the lines of 'the best plan lasts until the first arrow flies'). It could be impossible to plan for the last battle, but they could at least try (as of tGS, Rand has a plan of how to deal with the trolloc hordes, and how to take the fight to Shayol Ghul, but only a half formed, not very good plan of how to deal with the DO... do what he did last time). Any plans that the forces of Light could come up with only last until it begins, because the forces of the DO are the aggressors, thus, having the advantage of making the Light react to them, making the good guys play their game (at least, until Rand goes on the offensive at SG, which is why he is the supreme leader. He is the man with the plan.)
Henry Loose
61. schrodinger
Tuon's plan is simple:
1)get Dragon Reborn
2)have him bow to me
3)send him into battle
4)celebrate with newly acquired husband.
chaplainchris
62. Subbak
Rand al'Todd@57: Haha, well said.

Re: War powers (yeah, I know, the horse is dead, but I'm beating it some more anyway), it's amazing that only ONE Sitter would know the detail of a law with so big consequences... I know it's never been used in 1000 years, but basically it's like if the president/prime minister of a nuclear power forgot what the procedure to launch the nukes was, or that he even HAD the ability to launch the nukes.
Sooooo unprofessional.

Harai@59: Is the fact that she's made of awesome not justification enough? :p

As for Tuon plan, I guess it's along the lines of "Get the DR as da'covale because Prophecy Says So, then overwhelm whatever the Shadow has with your über-powerful Ever Victorious Army". The fact that Basher, Mat and Ituralde are able to kick said Ever Victorious Army's ass on a regular basis tends to prove that it may not be such a good plan.
T C
63. Freelancer
Leigh,

My take on Delana losing her lunch is that she's been getting beaten by Balthalima'gar pretty much daily for not causing enough difficulty for the Salidar Hall, apparently through the tactic of taking both sides of every issue in the hopes of fomenting gridlock. Now Egwene comes along and forces the road straight and smooth, preventing any chance of gridlock for going to Tar Valon, and Delana knows she's going to be getting more and stronger beatings. Hence, spew.


As for Takima, she remembers everything she reads, and she is a stickler for protocol. As much as she wants to, her very nature prohibits her from speaking out of turn and giving away Egwene's (Siuan's) scheme. She knows, she knows she's going to hate it, but she's also already realized that Egwene has a real spine, so she is the first to stand.


R.Fife@4

Well, since Egwene was expected to be, by the intentions of those who chose her, a "biddable"-child-puppet-powerless-sacrificial lamb, rather than a real leader with real authority, and since they employed legal mumbo-jumbo to get her there, it seems utterly apropos that Egwene use their own tactics to force action of the only kind which will produce results that mean squat. (Gotta love a perfectly formed run-on...)

And I have no significant judgement one way or another about "Kneel or you will be knelt." Rand demanded that they kneel. Taim took it a step further, which he really shouldn't have. However, Rand was in a frame of mind at that moment that preferred to go with the Black Tower flow, rather than chastise his Number One and give ANYTHING to the Aes Sedai who had stood on his last nerve and jumped about for a while.


Isilel@9

The one-month hiatus is for the soldiers to get themselves rested and their gear prepped before throwing the flag. Nothing more.


Subbak@49

Yes, you prep the weave, create a sound which can be heard at the destination, then open the gate. The forsaken do this once or twice for our awareness.
T C
64. Freelancer
BTW, from FB:

Brandon Sanderson: Okay, spellcheck done, revisions sent in to Team Jordan. Things are looking very good for the TofM deadlines.

ROXXOR
R B
65. MasterAlThor
Ahh, yes the reread. Lots of good stuff there. Just a few nuggets to point out.

We get some great insight on how women think about mens thinking.

Really wonder if it was men thinking like that, what would have been said? Would anyone have noticed? My vote is yep you bet.

R.Fife

I think I am with you on this one. I don't blame Rand for the kneel or be knelt thing. Had to happen.

Egwene and the Iamgoingtousealegalloopholetoscrewyou is kinda funny, but just like with Rand, had to happen.

Now here is where I go off the rails a bit. Egwene is getting a pass here by a lot of people. Her giving Lelaine and Romanda the business is great, but she used dirty politics to achieve it.

So what the people who are giving her a pass are saying is as long as your guy is the one playing dirty pool, everything is ok. I ain't down with this.

Egwene did something wrong here. Let's compare to a RL situation. Bush as Commander in Chief sends troops into Iraq. It was a war but Congress didn't declare one. Can you say end run around the middle? I knew you could.

The majority of Americans didn't want our troops to be there. Congress could stop funding the troops, forcing Bush to bring them home. But what politician was going to be seen as not funding the troops? Hmmm, seems to me like Bush and Egwene have something in common. Albeit only one thing but you see what I am saying.

My point is this, they both used a written law to achieve a means to an end. They both could have went about it a different way.

All that being said, I understand why Egwene did what she did, I'm just not giving her a free pass.

Shoryuken
Sharon E.
66. Sulin
Woohoo, another post! Thanks as always Leigh. :) I always enjoy reading Chapter 19, Egwene's MOA there.

ouroboros@44-
"From here on in, I'm calling the White Tower the Hen Coop.
ROTFL! That made my evening, so thanks.

schrodinger@40/51 and Rand al'Todd@57- Great points regarding Rand's authority, position etc., I was going to post something along the same lines but y'all did it so well I'll just nod my head and say: I agree completely.

HArai@56- Oh I am waiting for that scene, I think it will be memorable! :D

SulinoftheKneelorBeKneltSeptoftheCar'a'CarnsAiel
diane heath
67. jadelollipop
Re: Gateways in air...one of the gateways made by Sammael in dispersal of Shaido was in air because the leader (Maeric? the one due to go to Rhuidean)
called back about a drop....

Re: Takima I thought she stayed seated (in shock) but I read this chapter on Wednesday so may be wrong.
:)

Re: Rand as ruler,general whatsis....wasn't it the Borderlanders who commented that ruling was no part of the prophecies of the dragon??

I just finished prologue of WH and am in full sympathy with Rand and his desire to leave something behind...but Rand has the same idea re: a Breaking of the World being like the end of AOL.
Rand is breaking the world by changing the customs of the Aiel. Changing laws to be more of equality nature. As well as technological advances...He is more afraid of a physical reshaping of the land
Henry Loose
68. schrodinger
jadelollipop@67
it was the Andorans who said that the DR has no business ruling in Andor or elsewhere because it was not explicitly stated in the prophecies.

As to the breaking of the world... I agree. Rand is more afraid of a physical breaking and the strife that that would cause, but I think his worries are misplaced. To break the world on that scale, a side of the True Source would have to be tainted again... but we know, or can infer from one of Nicola's foretellings that this will not happen (Guardians to balance the Servants). The political mess left at the end of the last battle, as well as the advent of firearms is what will break the world, which leaves Rand a little more guilt free than before because firearms are Mat's and Aludra's pet project, and politics is always a clusterf***.
R B
69. MasterAlThor
@68

Ain't that the truth.

DragonoftheIseeyouSulinAiel
Thomas Keith
70. insectoid
Late again. Went on a 4-hour bike ride around Mission Bay, and then took a 2 hour nap. ::waves at Mis:: Yes, RL and alla that. Great post as always Leigh!

Ch. 19: One of my favorites in the whole book.
Siuan: Still cracks me up.

Sheriam: With hindsight, of course, it's perfectly obvious why she acts the way she does; but without, I would probably still guess there's more to her than meets the eye. Ditto for Moria, though she's not quite as obvious.

Egwene: Rocks. My. Socks. Way to put your foot down!

Delana: Meh. Guess she's no longer very useful, except to tip Halima off in KoD.

Ch. 20: May be boring, but not as dull or dreary as the next 4 or 5 chapters...
Kandori: Yeah, uh huh... nothing suspicious here!

Hot Rod: ::snicker::

Nyn + El in
T'A'R: I still laugh when I read the bit where Elayne snaps her fingers at Nynaeve.

At least there’ll be a murder soon!
How cheerful of you! LOL!!

LTF @26: Great... now I'll be be hearing and seeing Kathy Griffin whenever we talk about her... ;)

Fork @34: Well said!

Bzzz™.
T C
71. Freelancer
MasterAlThor@65

I have to differ with you on two points. First, Egwene did nothing outside of the law, she didn't even skirt the law. She used the law as written. She took advantage of information about Tower Law which was available to her and not to those whom she knew would oppose her efforts to accomplish something of value. She did nothing wrong. Ignorance of the law on the part of the Sitters isn't her fault, it is theirs. That aside from the comeuppance they so richly deserve for how they intended to use Egwene.

As to Iraq, the President submitted numerous requests to Congress for a declaration of war. What he got instead was a COWARDLY proclamation allowing the President to act as if he had a legal declaration, without making the commitment of actually voting on one. They could have, at any time, said no. They said instead, don't put any responsibility on us. A responsibility that they each take an oath to be accountable to. So, at that point, I agree with you that he and Egwene share in one respect, they did nothing wrong, but applied the authority granted them.
chaplainchris
72. Subbak
MasterAlThor@65: I don't agree with you. There are a number of dirty political tricks that you can use when you want to force a law on an assembly (declaring emergency with no good reason to limit length of debate, passing it in the summer when support against it is harder to gather, obfuscating it to the point no one but a team of professional lawyers with three weeks on their hands could understand what it is really about while making it look innocent...).

Ok, I agree that the third one looks pretty much like what Egwene did, but really, the Sitters had all opportunity to ask about details on the law on war and were only blinded by their underestimation of Egwene and their impatience to get to other matters...

I'm not saying that what she did is 100% ethical, but considering in such situations (IRL or in fiction), I feel more like the unprofessional parliament is much more to blame than the politician pulling the dirty trick.

Also, Egwene is awesome. Real life politicians are not. End of discussion, lalalala I can't hear you.
Henry Loose
73. schrodinger
Free@71
I agree with you completely on all points. The Hall of the Tower performs the same function as the Congress of the U.S. and its actions in the later books (disorganized, childish, bickering, and cowardice) really show something that RJ did really well, which is take something from his own experiences, and thoughts, and transfer it into the world of the WoT. I specifically like in tGS, when Egwene is berating the sitters after being raised again, on the purpose of the Hall to act as a check of the Amyrlin's powers (why hello expansion of federal powers under Bush and continued expansion under Obama).
chaplainchris
74. smcyc
In retrospect I am kind of wondering about RJ decision to make the war vote pass with the bare minimum (12/18 sitter). In TGS we have a POV from Egwene after learning the names of the black sisters, she realizes that one of sitter's to vote for Siuan/Elaida coup was back, and since that vote passed w/ only the minimum then Elaida's really never was AS. Well, since Delana is black then by the same logic her vote for war did not count, therefore the vote for war did not actually get the lesser majority. Ok, I am over analyzing this and besides it is kind of moot point since nobody at this time knew about Delana, but I still think it would have been better if at least 13 sitters has stood.
Alice Arneson
75. Wetlandernw
Re: the War vote - I assumed that Siuan knew both the Law of War and that Takima had read it. If Janya hadn't asked Takima, Egwene could have asked her in such a way that she couldn't worm out of admitting that she not only had read it but remembered it. As far as Takima not warning them, it seems reasonable to me that she would not expect Egwene to have the detailed knowledge she does, in fact, have. Once Romanda called for a vote, it was too late for Takima to speak up. (Per the book, they're not supposed to speak during a vote, though both Janya and Moria do so: "If Janya's speaking had gone against custom, this tied it in a knot.") Quite possibly, too, if Takima has a literally photographic memory, she is "reading" it in her head; depending on how wordy the law is, she might not have gotten to the part about the greater consensus until it was just too late. (I know, it sounds silly, but if that's the way your brain works, you're stuck with it. I'm pretty sure at least one other person in this bunch knows exactly what I mean and how valid it is.) Clearly, though, Takima didn't expect the vote to pass, and was fully aware of the implications when it did. And just as clearly, she was hoping not to have to reveal those implications.

By the way, in the unquoted text of the book, Janya's full statement was "Takima, you remember everything you read, and I'm sure I remember you saying you had read the Law of War. Is that what it says?" The clear implication is that Takima has a fully eidetic memory.

blindillusion @23 - I feel like I'm saying this too often.... but I think Lelaine's qualifications for anything are another of those things we need to assume happened off-screen, probably before the books start. There are a lot of these second- and third-level characters who have "reputations" that we don't see justified, but since they have those reputations, we need to accept that they were earned in some way before we met them. On screen, she mostly shows her ability to annoy the reader. :-)

Ouroboros @35 - "The Hall normally debates matters and they both have a say in that. They have now been told that they must obey without question. This sounds like a new obligation." The point is, Egwene is only following Tower Law, to which all Aes Sedai are already bound, and she is requiring every Sitter in the Hall to follow that Law. The fact that many of them weren't even aware the Law existed in no way mitigates their obligation to follow it. And they aren't really being required to "obey without question" - they can question all they want, but when she issues a war-related edict they are required to support her. So their being required to give Egwene the greater consensus is not a new obligation, but a new consequence of their existing obligation.

misfortuona @38 - LOL!!!

Isilel @39 - "didn't H'gar boast somewhere that Egwene was fully under her thumb?" She boasted that "her charge" was fully under her thumb. Varying interpretations... Delana? Sheriam? Egwene? I vote Sheriam, based on TGS, but who knows what she actually meant.

Freelancer @63 - Agree on Delana and the spew event. However, Takima didn't actually stand for the war vote until the bit about the greater consensus came out; the other two Browns were the first to stand.

Oh, and well-formed run-ons FTW!

MasterAlThor @65 - Not to jump on you, but I'm not with you on this. Egwene did nothing either illegal or unethical, so there's nothing to "pass." (I absolutely and categorically refuse to get into RL politics.) It was not in the least "dirty politics." Certainly their ignorance worked in favor of what she wanted to acheive. So did Romanda's impatience to sweep Egwene aside so she could get on with her anti-Lelaine agenda. So did Takima's hesitance to blurt out the rest of the law. So what? That was neither illegal nor unethical. In order to unify the Tower to get ready for Tarmon Gai'don, she had to get certain things going. She made use of their ignorance and pettiness to maneuver them into doing the right thing. I don't have a problem with this, other than that forced compliance will have repercussions in their reluctance to cooperate in other areas.
chaplainchris
76. EmmaPease
Ignorance of the law on the part of almost all of the sitters might also be a side effect of so many of them being young snd new to being sitters. In a Hall with most of the sitters far older and longer in the Hall than most of the sitters in Egwene's Hall, more would be familiar with all the law including the law on war. The odd thing is that neither Romanda or Lelaine know about it.
Sandy Brewer
77. ShaggyBella
As always I am amazed that y'all can keep all the different Aes Sedai straight. Which ones are black, moles, their motivations, too young sitters, under who's control, etc. I guess my brain glazes over after a few dozen and I usually do not remember the particulars of each one. Very impressive!
chaplainchris
78. Subbak
Wetlandernw@75:
Clearly, though, Takima didn't expect the vote to pass, and was fully aware of the implications when it did. And just as clearly, she was hoping not to have to reveal those implications.


I sincerely doubt that she would go-through such an un-Aes Sedai behavior (deliberately ignore a law she knows of, espacially one as old as the law of war).

She made use of their ignorance and pettiness to maneuver them into doing the right thing. I don't have a problem with this, other than that forced compliance


I am with you in favor of Egwene here, but this was still dirty politics, since this made use of a flaw in the way the Hall works (actually, two) : that the question may not be shelved and must be examined on the spot, and that no more information may be disclosed once the voting starts.
In the same way that filibustering, the exact opposite (if I understand it properly, I'm not American and from an European point of view it just looks weird), is a dirty trick, even if totally legal.

smcyc@74: As I already said in commentary to this post and the one before, it's good that this "BA votes are invalid" was never more than an argument among others to convince people that Elaida's election was unethical and a mistake, otherwise Egwene would have been setting a bad precedent.

ShaggyBella@77: I don't think it has to do with age, it just reveals a bad tendency of non-Brown Aes Sedai not to care about the past. Or the outside world, for that matter.
chaplainchris
79. Subbak
In my latest comment, replace ShaggyBella@77 with EmmaPease@76, of course.
Mikey Bennett
80. EvilMonkey
Despite the way Egwene makes them look, Romanda and Lelaine are not the incompetent jackasses that they seem to be. Actually, if it wasn't for their chick fight they would probably be much more effective. At certain points in the series (later, much later) each of them proves that they have a brain in their head, not just a block of solid wood. Romanda outs Delana by connecting some very obscure dots. All the more amazing because she really wasn't kickin it buddies with "The Three". Nope, wasn't even in the same Ajah. Lelaine by outing Siuan as really really loyal to Egwene and all that poutie-sullenness was an act. If either one had primacy in their rivalry, we wouldn't be exclaiming to the awesomeness of Egwene, not because they are in any way smarter than our Amrylin Supergirl, but because they have the clout and enough brains to make things work in their favor. This of course would have been a disaster for Team Light since they are very much of the old guard and inflexible in a time when all AS should be supple.

Egwene's awesomeness simply cannot be denied, yet her biggest strength besides her flexibility is her opportunistic-ness. She succeeds because she is able to exploit numerous situations that would have broken many people and use a perfect opportunity to sieze an advantage. In effect, she has perfect timing when she pounces. All of her MOA's after she comes into her own involve perfect pounces. Law of War, the Moggy slapdown, the Seanchan attack, the blackmail oaths, even the Elaida eviseration.

I think she possesses that Lion in High Grass quality we see in the Sheperd, the Wolf and the Gambler. Always underestimated or unseen until a sudden movement has their teeth wrapped around ya throat.

I don't know how this post got so long, I really did start off not knowing what to say on this besides Egwene=Awesome and Elaine=Not so much, at least in this chapter.

ShadowkilleroftheIHaveNoIdeaWhereTheseWallsOTextComeFromAiel.
Jacy Clark
81. Amalisa
M-a-T and Subbak... if Egwene and Siuan were operating within the confines of Tower law and following the procedure set forth by the Hall, how can it be "dirty politics"? As has been said by several of us, if the Sitters couldn't be bothered to learn the rules of the game, why would it be Egwene's fault that they lost?

We can say that the rules themselves are flawed, I suppose. But as long as they are the rules, Egwene was perfectly within her rights to play by them.
chaplainchris
82. Subbak
Argh... Everyone keep getting me wrong. I guess I usea different definition of dirty politics. To me anything that uses the letter of the law rather than the intent (i.e. any thing Aes Sedai-y) is likely to qualify.
And, yes, I still think Egwene is awesome and was right to play dirty here.
Jacy Clark
83. Amalisa
lol@Subbak...

Okay. I understand. Have a cookie! :D
Ron Garrison
84. Man-0-Manetheran
Hi all. Just sticking my head in the bunker to say 'hi' and let you know I'm still alive. Can't keep up with the reading, but I have to get my dose of Leigh's hilarious commentary. Extra good today, or maybe I just really needed to laugh.

We just entered our busiest season at work and the m-rons in Marketing (I know that's redundant) decided to launch a brand new website just days before the first concert. Surprise, surprise, it was full of bugs. (Still is!) People, they are so lucky I don't know the weaves for balefire.

Love you all, and I'll keep trying to find my way back to the bunker.
Alice Arneson
85. Wetlandernw
EmmaPease @76 - "The odd thing is that neither Romanda or Lelaine know about it." There's no mystery, per the quote Leigh provided:
The last time the Tower itself actually declared war had been against Artur Hawkwing. Siuan said that now only a few librarians knew much more than that there was a Law of War.
Why would a Blue or a Yellow go poking around laws that are well over a thousand years old? It's not like they have been considering declaring war on anyone lately, and old laws are much more the purview of Browns or (possibly) Whites.

Subbak @78 - I totally don't follow you here. Aes Sedai are masters of ignoring or sidestepping things that are not helpful to their personal aims. Are you claiming that Takima would naturally have told them about the requirement for the greater consensus, once the lesser was achieved? If so, I'd like to know why you think so. If you're trying to say something else, you'll have to be more specific.

As for "dirty politics" - y'all will have to work a lot harder to convince me there was anything dirty. Tower law says that when a question of war has been called, it cannot be shelved. So? How is following that law "dirty?" At that point, they could have discussed it for a while. Any sister could have asked Takima to recite the entire law, or at least asked for a summary of its major points. After Egwene's little speech in favor of declaring war, they could have discussed the pros and cons before actually voting. It was Romanda who pushed them into the standard Tower procedure that once a vote has been called, they should make their decisions without further discussion. Obviously Egwene felt that recent events should make them all jump to their feet to declare war on Elaida, but she wasn't the one to end discussion. I don't see "dirty" here anywhere.

re: your post @82 - I still don't see "dirty" - Egwene did nothing outside the intent of the law, either. "Dirty" implies unethical behavior. Clever, yes. In fact, she was able to use their pettiness, shortsightedness and ignorance to get them to follow a right and necessary path instead of their shortsighted and petty agendas. Sneakiness almost Verin-worthy, but not dirtiness.

(psst - EvilMonkey - the word you're looking for is "opportunistim")
T C
86. Freelancer
(psst - EvilMonkey - the word you're looking for isn't "opportunistim", it's "opportunism".)

::runs for the hills::
Alice Arneson
87. Wetlandernw
Ooops. ::blushes several shades of crimson::
Sharon E.
89. Sulin
Master al'Thor- I see you, Car'a'Carn. We of the Gabbly Aiel haven't "seen" you lately. You've been missed!

@Free and Wetlander- ROTFL! Oh my, I laughed so hard my side hurts! :D

SulinoftheHadTooMuchOosquaiTonightAiel
Birgit
91. birgit
So I guess there is a way of traveling, used in the AoL, that avoided hitting people with gates.

Abruptly a vertical slash of silver appeared at the far end of the room, bright against the tapestries hanging between the heavy gilded mirrors, and a crystalline chime rang loud. Her eyebrows rose in surprise. Someone remembered the courtesies of a more civilized Age, it seemed. Standing, she forced the plain band of gold down against the ruby ring on her smallest finger and embraced saidar through it before channeling the web that would sound an answering chime for whoever wanted to open a gateway.

TPoD ch. 12
chaplainchris
92. Subbak
Amalisa@83: Hmmm, cookies!

Wetlandernw@85: Not having the greater consensus would mean ignoring a very old law, which is very un-Aes Sedai. So yes, I believe that unless the greater consensus had been achieved any way (which was not the case, because of Romanda), Takima would have told them.

re: dirtyness, well you can't deny that this vote is not how things are meant to happen (that's what make it awesome), and Egwene knew it and used their pettiness and some aspects of the law for it. It's not very unethical, because they were not coerced and basically shot themselves in the foot thanks to Romanda, but not totally beyond reproach.
But let's all have cookies and talk about something else.

birgit@91: Thanks for the quote (I don't have the books before WH with me), I remembered something of that sort. Wouldn't the vertical slash be deadly if it touched someone?
Also the "someone remembered the courtesies of a more civilized age" tends to indicate that not all FS bother (I can't see who with Traveling would visit Graendal other than a FS).
Vincent Lane
93. Aegnor
I haven't read all the comments yet, so I'm not sure if this has been mentioned, but I have always assumed that the reason Takima was silent about it, is because Egwene faked her out with the whole "lets sit her a month" thing. She was silent because she thought the waiting of a month indicated that Egwene wanted to slow down the prosecution of the war. Something that Takima would obviously want. That is why Takima starts weeping when Egwene reveals her Traveling plan. It is then that she realizes she just made a huge mistake.
diane heath
94. jadelollipop
Since the Elaine chapter has little to discuss I will bring up the lack of questions re: Aviendha's toh to Rand. I had previously commented that the lack of asking questions ties into the Rand as Fisher King. I think if E had asked she would have learned more about Rand in the Waste and at Carhien.
Maybe about his parents (although not name of his mom) Any opinions on how that tie to Galad will be revealed and what reaction might be?
Any ideas on what ? one character should ask another
What would you want revealed?
R B
95. MasterAlThor
Morning all and now for today's news.

Free,
I'm not saying that Egwene or GB did anything outside the law. You are correct about ignorance of the law is no excuse.

As Commander in Chief, the president has the legal authority to send troops anywhere in the world. He didn't have ask, but it was nice that he did. Thanks for that little interesting tidbit, I didn't know that.

My point was that in using their "war powers" both Egwene and GB got what they wanted.

Subbak,
I did say that there are better examples didn't I? ::checks:: Ok, that must have been cut in the final draft.

And I agree. RL politicans suck, but that is because we are slack in our responsiblity. Cookies sound good, can I join you?

Wet,
Jump away. That is part-n-parcel with wanting to earn a GURU degree here. BTW I totally get into RL politics, cuz if I'm going to complain I better be doing my civic duty.(That's not a shot at anyone here.)

I think it was unethical at best, but nowhere near illegal. I actually understand what Egwene is doing, but I try not to follow the ends justifies the means policy.

Subbak said that using the law to further your own ends is playing dirty. That's the best way to put it. Yeah they are playing inside the framework of the rules but that doesn't make them clean.

MoM,
Hey! I'm in Marketing. Shiny word box thingy don't make head hurt. I smart.

Love you too brother, take it easy.

Sulin,
I've been here, there and everywhere. I will be on soon.

DragonofthespendingsummerwiththekidsAiel
D R
96. Ouroboros
Looking Glass @ 43: "any embarrassment they feel about being outmanoeuvred politically doesn’t really enter into the moral comparison about this vs. Rand’s forced kneeling."

Agreed. I was really just answering to "Lelaine and Romanda may have been embarrassed, but only by Egwene saying that they will be appropriately respectful to their ruler, or face the appropriate discipline." It's not relevant to the Rand comparison but there were other embarrassments. I know, I'm knit picking.

SusanB @ 46: I'm not sure if that would have worked. Every time we see people try to read things in T'A'R they keep changing before they've had a chance to read the whole document. I'd think that a book would be even worse since it's made up of so many pages. You'd probably find that you were being bounced around the whole book at random. You may even find that the book is often replaced by another.

Isilel @ 47: There are plenty of bits in the profecies that imply he has to lead and rule: People of the Dragon; leads the spears to war once more; he shall bind the nine moons to serve him; what chains has he broken, and who put into chains?; the unstained tower breaks and bends knee to the forgotten sign; he shall wear a crown of swords.

He may be misinterpreting things but so did Moiraine, and she was training him to be a leader and not a puppet for other AS to play with, so it’s easy to see where he got the idea from. Also, her last words were to trust no AS and this particular group were turning out to be a real nuisance. They may have just fought for him, but they were proving yet again that they had no respect for his wishes. Yes, he could have sent them away but he would have had to deal with them again when they next turned up and started trying to mess things up.

Freelancer @ 63:

You still get a vertical slash before the chime sounds. I.E. a thin gate is opened first and the sound sent through it. It may well be lethal for anyone to be standing where that slash appears. There may be someway to open a very "shallow" gate in the air above head height and peak through, but it sounds like Travelling is a pretty hazardous business unless there are designated waypoints.

Sulin @ 66: Just for you.

"Cluck cluck - I'm the Amyrlin."
"Bwahk bwahk. - I'm a Sitter in the Hall."
"Cock-a-doodle-doo. - I'm an Asha'man."
"I'm Rand al'Thor. Meet my family and other animals."
Sharon E.
97. Sulin
@Jade-I have some ideas/comments regarding characters (not) asking questions, I will post them later.

@M-A-T- I guess I've just not been in chat when you were. I've been busy finishing up the school year with the kids, then planning on enjoying a nice relaxing summer myself. :)

SulinoftheStayedUpTooLateAgainSeptoftheNightOwlAiel
Sheila McEvoy
98. SuffatheDamane
Aegnor@93 sez...

I haven't read all the comments yet, so I'm not sure if this has been mentioned, but I have always assumed that the reason Takima was silent about it, is because Egwene faked her out with the whole "lets sit her a month" thing. She was silent because she thought the waiting of a month indicated that Egwene wanted to slow down the prosecution of the war. Something that Takima would obviously want. That is why Takima starts weeping when Egwene reveals her Traveling plan. It is then that she realizes she just made a huge mistake.

That, that is a frickin' great point!

Nice.
Sheila McEvoy
99. SuffatheDamane
But... I neglect my main point.

I always reconciled Takima's rather schizophrenic behavior here thusly:

Takima and the rest of the the Ob5 obviously have taken pains to blend in with the rebels camp. They don't actively rail against the notion of rebellion, beseech the sisters to return to Elaida, they don't use their suasion to shape public opinion against Sheriam and her clique - which at this point, I would think to the rebel sisterhood at large, includes Siuan Leane and Egwene.

Just to step back here - it seems to me that until Egwene starts taking matters in hand and getting the rebels to, you know, actually rebel, the Salidar Hall looks rather like window dressing, like those huge, politically toothless legislatures one found in Soviet era communist countries. They exist so we can pretend that they a representative government, but everyone knows that the real power lays within the Politburo.

So, random rebel Aes Sedai Jane al'Schmoe must think "sure, we have a Faux Hall here in Salidar, but Sheriam and her puppet Amyrlin and Sheriam's clique are running the show here."

Which directs me back to my point - the Ob5 are only mildly Obstructionist and not at all the Contumacious Five. They sorta want to blend in and only try to subtly direct matters away from open hostility with the Tower. After all, they all participated in the raising of a Counter Amyrlin. They didn't want to distinguish themselves by opposing such an act so early on.

Back to Takima specifically. Egwene asks her a nerdy, scholarly question, and Takima, like all true Know-it-Alls can't help but answer. But she didn't bother explaining what was about to happen because she considers Egwene to be a bit of a farce and she never expected the Declaration of War to Pass! She knows that her sister ObFivers (Faiselle, Varillin, Magla, Saroiya) have pretty much hand selected their "sham" co-Sitters, and thus, she must have presumed that they had them well in hand.

It was only after Egwene manages to score her powerplay here do they start actively working the political system to blunt the rebellion - while also not being actively hostile and calling attention to themselves.
Sharon E.
100. Sulin
Contumacious? Huh? ::flips through dictionary:: Ah, now it makes sense. Good points, Suffa! ;)
D R
101. Ouroboros
Egwene's act was in no way ethical. I've only got 10 minutes so this will be a little rushed.

What Takima, Lelaine, and Romanda did or should have done is irrelevant. What matters is what Egwene's intensions were.

She sent sisters in secret to agitate the nobles before the meeting.
She sent Bryne in secret to arrange the meeting.
She sent sisters in secret to talk to the Sitters to make sure that they were looking for signs of being disrespected, misunderstood, and refused by the nobles.
She told the Sitters that the declaration of war will prevent them from being disrespected, misunderstood, and refused again whilst concealing her intension to begin a military campaign.
She believed that no Sitter knew about the special powers and did not intend to reveal that information, thus lying by omission.
She intended to pervert the democratic process by forcing the Sitters to pass a vote that would give her special powers without them being aware of the fact.
Once her powers were confirmed she used them to begin a military campaign which she did not discuss with the Sitters prior to calling the vote.

These acts may have been necessary from Egwene's point of view, but asking people to reach a decision whilst withholding vital facts, and using a deliberately engineered situation as proof of the necessity for that decision, cannot ever be viewed as ethical. Moreover, her first act was decree an act that the Sitters almost certainly would not have agreed to, so this was at the very least a subversion of the democratic process.

It was legally valid, but then so was Elaida's coup.

On other relevant points.

RE: The fact that many of them weren't even aware the Law existed in no way mitigates their obligation to follow it.

In some cases ignorance of the law is actually a valid defense. Egwene deliberately attempted to conceal the law and if Takima had not been there then they would have had no opportunity to investigate those laws before taking the vote. In short, Egwene is expecting to leave the Hall with them bound to her in a way which they could not have anticipated.

To those who don't think that this law requires obedience without question. Egwene's first use of her powers is to order a military action which the Sitters most likely would not have agreed to, and she did not consult the Sitters for advice first. It was simple decreed and the Sitters had no choice but to obey.

BTW, I never said that it required obedience in all things, just matters relating to the war.
chaplainchris
102. douglasm
Concerning the "Hot Rod" incident, that item's function was revealed in the Wheel of Time RPG. To quote encyclopaedia-wot.org on it (listed as "red rod"):

A ter'angreal in the form of a wrist-thick red rod about a foot long. It feels firm rather than hard and feels even warmer than ter'angreal normally do. The red rod is activated by Fire. It creates visual and aural illusions, but if the user is unwary it may put her to sleep and broadcast her fantasies and dreams.

Now, Elayne's fantasies and dreams may prominently feature sex with Rand and other such embarrassing things, but apparently she didn't actually do anything while affected by it.
Tess Laird
103. thewindrose
I remember reading chapter 19 the fist time. It was so...kick ass!!! And it seemed like things were going to happen, like now. (I sure glossed over the stay here for one month part:)) Seeing as there is a whole book that covers just one week.
I was very surprised that the Blue Sitters didn't all stand up at once. It made Lelaine seem even more petty to me, because didn't they all know Elaida had decided to get completely get rid of the Blue Ajah by this time?

A nod to ShaggyBella -
"Not much," Siuan replied in a tight voice. Shaggy Bela did not seem to be having any difficulty with the pace, but Siuan did, gripping her reins tightly in one hand and the pommel of her saddle with the other.

And our ladies don't always Travel 10 days out side of a city:
"There's an end to delays, daughter." Egwene cut in. "No more dragging our feet."{...}"In one month, we will Travel from here."{...}"In one month, we will begin the siege of Tar Valon."


And here is our Econ lesson for the day from chapter 20 Into Andor:
Merilille shook her head. "We have what they want, but they have what we need. I'm afraid that means they set the price."


tempest™
Henry Loose
104. schrodinger
Ouroboros@101
actually, I believe both elaida's coup and the declaration of war were illegal because of the votes cast by Black Ajah sitters. Both used the minimum majority, and both had at least one Black stand for the vote.
chaplainchris
105. Jonathan Levy
Looking Glass@15

The justification given for the Traveling thing is that if they pop up randomly in the area near a big city, there’s a moderate chance of cutting someone in half, so when they don’t have an exact spot to travel to, they go for the more sparsely inhabited regions instead. Which actually seems reasonable.


Yes - but: Why don't they open a gateway 100 meters above the ground, peek down to see that their landing zone is clear, and then open the real gateway? Bah. Maybe they just haven't thought of it.
chaplainchris
106. Jonathan Levy
douglasm@102

Concerning the "Hot Rod" incident, that item's function was revealed in the Wheel of Time RPG. To quote encyclopaedia-wot.org on it (listed as "red rod"): ... The red rod is activated by Fire. It creates visual and aural illusions, but if the user is unwary it may put her to sleep and broadcast her fantasies and dreams.


I've also read this description, and it's always attributed to the WoT RPG. My understanding of the WoT RPG is that it non-canonical. I remember reading a quote from an interview with Robert Jordan in which he says that his participation was limited to saying "No, you cannot have clerics" and things like that. Also, I have never seen the RPG quoted as an authority for anything else.

Can anyone explain why it is considered an authority for this particular ter'angreal? Or am I wrong in describing the RPG as non-canonical?
Birgit
107. birgit
Every time we see people try to read things in T'A'R they keep changing before they've had a chance to read the whole document. I'd think that a book would be even worse since it's made up of so many pages.

The papers fade away because they are in one place only a short time in the waking world. A book that has sat on a library shelf for centuries would be stable (although you might have to take it off the shelf again if you look away for a moment).
Alice Arneson
108. Wetlandernw
Jonathan Levy @106 - That's exactly my thought. The RPG made up rules and definitions for things as they needed them and were useful in the game, but those rules and definitions have no authority outside the game. The WoT Encyclopaedia, Wiki and possibly a few other places will sometimes include the RPG definitions if there's not much else available, but it is certainly not canon.

As far as the crimson rod ter'angreal is concerned, we have very little proof of anything except that a) the user apparently doesn't remember anything and b) if Elayne ever found out what she did she'd be all kinds of embarrassed. People quote the RPG definition, but it's not canon. People quote Birgitte and hold it up as proof, but it's only one possibility. We really don't know for sure. My own personal opinion is that she did something embarrassing but not particularly scandalous, given the reactions of everyone else. They all thought it was hilariously funny, but no one gave her "disapproving" or "scandalized" or otherwise negative looks, and with this bunch that ought to be worth something. Oh well. YMMV.
chaplainchris
109. Jonathan Levy
Wetlandernw@108

I'm glad to see I'm not the only one to look askance at the certainty with which the RPG is quoted in this case.

When I first read Birgitte's quote from WH, I didn't see it as related at all to this incident. Upon re-reading it, I can understand why people think it is. To be precise, it is Aviendha's reaction which is convincing - it's as if she and Birgitte are sharing a joke. What else could it be? But when I first read this chapter, undressing and dancing was not what I thought she did.

As to what I did think... well, I'll join that conversation, but I won't start it. It'll probably go downhill very quickly. :)
Alice Arneson
110. Wetlandernw
Ouroboros @101 - I find it interesting that one of your basic assumptions is that Egwene "believed that no Sitter knew about the special powers and did not intend to reveal that information, thus lying by omission."

My assumption is exactly the opposite: she was confident that at least one Sitter knew the full law. If no one knew it, she'd never have gotten past her initial statement. Someone in the Hall (since it was a closed session) had to know the Law of War in order to support her claim that no other question could be called until the question of War had been dealt with. In addition, someone in the Hall had to know about the Amyrlin's powers under the Law of War in order to force the greater consensus. If no one had known the first, Romanda and Lelaine would have had Egwene's question shelved in about three seconds so they could get on with their own private power struggle. If no one had known the second, it would have required finding someone who did know in order to actually accomplish anything. Egwene took a chance on Takima not saying too much too soon, but it would have been a worse risk to have no one around who knew the Law of War.

Certainly she used their arrogance, their pride, and their poor opinions of her to manipulate them into doing something they would not otherwise have done. Still, as I said before, they didn't have to do any of it. She didn't stop them from discussing the question; they should have listened to her words and then taken time for various other inputs, pro and con, before calling the question. Egwene was probably even expecting that, but hoping that their pride would provoke them into declaring war anyway. She was hoping that Takima wouldn't reveal too much about the Law of War, but she did nothing to stop Takima saying anything she wished.

As far as not revealing her entire plan, how is that unethical? The fact that she knows what she intends to do, and a fair bit of how she's going to go about doing it, should have no bearing on whether or not the Hall is willing to declare war on Elaida.

By the way, is there textual proof that
a) She sent sisters in secret to agitate the nobles before the meeting and
b) She sent sisters in secret to talk to the Sitters to make sure that they were looking for signs of being disrespected, misunderstood, and refused by the nobles,
or are those your assumptions of her orders to those sisters? I don't have time to go back through the last couple of chapters at the moment, but I don't remember specific instructions being shared with the reader.
Jay Dauro
111. J.Dauro
We do know that Egwene sent Beonin, Anaiya and Myrelle to find the Andorans, and we know that Sheriam, Carlinya, Morvrin and Nisao were to talk to the sisters to plant "seeds." But as far as I can find that is all we know of the instructions.
Julian Augustus
112. Alisonwonderland
Suffa @99:
Back to Takima specifically. Egwene asks her a nerdy, scholarly question, and Takima, like all true Know-it-Alls can't help but answer. But she didn't bother explaining what was about to happen because she considers Egwene to be a bit of a farce and she never expected the Declaration of War to Pass! She knows that her sister ObFivers (Faiselle, Varillin, Magla, Saroiya) have pretty much hand selected their "sham" co-Sitters, and thus, she must have presumed that they had them well in hand.

Kudos, you hit the nail right on the head. Here's the sequence of events before and after the vote:

Gripping the edges of her cloak Egwene stepped up onto the brightly lit striped box and turned. Lelaine was already on her feet, blue-fringed shawl loped across her arms, and Romanda was rising without even waiting for Egwene to sit. She dared not let either seize the tiller. "I call a question before the Hall," she said in a loud, firm voice. "Who will stand to declare war against the usurper Elaida do Avriny a'Roihan?"

The next thing that happens is that both Lelaine and Romanda try to brush her question aside. Lelaine says you can't declare war on individuals, and lets move on to more important things, such as how silly it is to remain here a month wasting money, opening up the novice book to grandmothers, etc. Romanda then interrupts Lelaine to declare that by protocol she has the right to speak before Lelaine, and one of the things she wants to talk about is Lelaine's fitness to continue in the Hall. Egwene then breaks in:
"A question of war cannot be shelved," Egwene said in a carrying tone. "It must be answered before any question called after it. That is the Law."

This is what prompts Janya to appeal to Takima's eidetic memory: "Takima, you remember everything you read, and I'm sure I remember you saying you had read the Law of War. Is that what it says?"

Note that Takima has not been asked to give her opinion on anything regarding the Law of War other than to confirm or deny that a question of war must be answered before the Hall moves on to other issues. After a little bit of adjusting her shawl, shifting in her seat, straightening her cap, and otherwise pondering how best to answer the question, Takima finally decides to give a direct answer to the question, "It is."

Romanda, wanting to get this irritant out of the way and get to the more pleasant task of trying to unseat Lelaine from the Hall, then invites Egwene to state her case for declaring war. As she gets up to give her speech, Egwene looks each sister in the eye and notes that Takima avoided her eyes, which made her sure Takima had guessed her plan, but she plowed on anyway, hoping Takima would keep quiet.

After Egwene's speech, Romanda, being impatient to get to the subject of unseating Lelaine, didn't even ask for alternative points of view or any sort of debate. She immediately called for the vote.
Romanda grunted impatiently, and stood only long enough to say, "Who stands for declaring war against Elaida?" Her gaze returned to Lelaine, and her cold, smug smile returned. It was clear what she considered important, once this nonsense was done with.

Janya stood first, followed by Escaralde. Then Moria, Samalin, Malind, Salita, Kwamesa, Aledrin, Berana, and finally, Delana stood.
Egwene felt bile rising in her own throat. Ten. Just ten. She had been so sure. Siuan had been so sure. Logain alone should have been enough, given their ignorance of the law involved. Pelivar's army and Arathelle refusing to admit that they were Sitters should have primed them like a pump.

At this point, Takima's calculation that the vote would fail and that no intervention from her was needed was spot on. What tipped the scales was Moria, and the reason I was so sad when she turned out to be black.
"For the love of the Light!" Moria burst out. Rounding on Lyrelle and Lelaine, she planted her fist on her hips. If Janya's speaking had gone against custom, this turned it in a knot. Displays of anger were strictly forbidden in the Hall, but Moria's eyes blazed, and her Illianer accent was thick with it. "Why do you wait? Elaida did steal the stole and staff! Elaida's Ajah did make Logain a false Dragon, and only the Light knows how many other men! No woman in the history of the Tower did ever deserve this declaration more! Stand, or hold silent from now about your resolve to remove her!"

Lelaine angrily says this wasn't worth a vote, but if it serves as a demonstration of resolve ... she stood and gestured for Lyrelle to also stand. Twelve now.
Far from standing, Takima grunted as if struck. Disbelief bright on her face, she ran her eyes along the women on their feet, obviously counting. And then she did it again. Takima, who remembered everything the first time.

As we can see, Takima obviously suspected what Egwene was trying to do, but she held her silence for two reasons. First, she was certain the vote would fail. And second, procedural rules prevented her from speaking out. She was asked a direct question which she had to answer without seizing the floor herself to make a speech, and Romanda's impatience meant there was no opportunity to debate the proposition and allow her to impart her knowledge of what the Law of War meant. She could have gone against custom by countermanding Romanda's call for a vote and demanding a debate, but she didn't want to draw attention to her motives, and she was sure the vote would fail anyway.

Perhaps a bit of Rand's taveren-ness was rubbing off on Egwene to make Moria tip the scales the way she did. As an aside, couldn't RJ have made someone else other than Moria black? I couldn't believe it in TGS, mainly because of this speech.
Alice Arneson
113. Wetlandernw
J.Dauro @111 - Thanks! That's about what I was remembering. So we can speculate about what they were sent to do, but we don't know for sure, unless someone talks about it later.

By the way... Of the 18 Sitters, 12 voted for the war declaration. The 6 who did not (initially) were Romanda and the 5 sitters who were sent by their Ajah heads: Takima (Brown), Varilin (Gray), Faiselle (Green), Saroiya (White) and Magla (Yellow), also known as the Obstructionist Five (Ob5). Stands to reason, if their instructions are to try to avoid irreconcilable activities, but for anyone not keeping lists I thought it might be nice to see this one. Aside from Romanda, who is a major obstructionist all on her own noodle, everyone who was not a "plant" voted for the war.
chaplainchris
114. Ellie_Angel
I always figured Delana pukes because she's under orders not to let Egwene become awesome -- the Shadow seems more on to people's potential in these areas than the Light throughout the series. It serves their purposes if Egwene is a puppet jerked around by Lelaine and Romanda, not someone who can be an actual focal point and rally the peeps (as we see she does later).

Also, what rosetintdworld said.
Eugenie Delaney
115. EmpressMaude
wetlanderw@113

By the way... Of the 18 Sitters, 12 voted for the war declaration. The 6 who did not (initially) were Romanda and the 5 sitters who were sent by their Ajah heads: Takima (Brown), Varilin (Gray), Faiselle (Green), Saroiya (White) and Magla (Yellow), also known as the Obstructionist Five (Ob5). Stands to reason, if their instructions are to try to avoid irreconcilable activities, but for anyone not keeping lists I thought it might be nice to see this one. Aside from Romanda, who is a major obstructionist all on her own noodle

Amazingly enough, the WOTFAQ picked all of that out almost ten years ago!

However, one still wonders why the Ob5 stood for Egwene as Amyrlin in the first place, though.
Julian Augustus
116. Alisonwonderland
Wetlander @110:

Your question about Egwene's manouvering of the Sitters before the vote is partly answered in my quote above. Nevertheless, I fully agree with you that there was nothing unethical about Egwene lobbying the Hall beforehand to make the Sitters more receptive of her proposition. On the vote itself, she stated her case to the Hall, and did not prevent anyone else from stating an alternative point of view.

In answer to Ouroboros and M A T, we can't blame Egwene for the fact that Romanda wanted the war vote quickly out of the way so she could get on with her power struggle against Lelaine, and we can't blame Egwene for the fact that Takima, who knew what Egwene was trying to do, didn't have the courage to say, "forget about custom, I demand a debate of the vote."

I don't see how one is acting unethically if one wins a vote because one's opponent is too dismissive of one's person to even consider taking one's proposed vote seriously and does not want to waste any time on a debate of the issue (Romanda). Nor do I see it as unethical if one wins a vote because one's opponent is too arrogant in thinking that the vote is going to fail so does not call for a debate of the issue.

The war vote could have failed, and nearly did. That it passed had everything to do with the attitudes of the various sisters and nothing to do with unethical behaviour on Egwene's part.
Alice Arneson
117. Wetlandernw
Alisonwonderland @112 and 116 - BRAVO!! Well said. Total agreement. (Is that a first? ;)) It tells me, also, that for one thing, Siuan and Egwene had not yet figured out that the Ob5 had been sent by their Ajah heads or any of that. It also at least indicates that Takima was sure that those five plus (at least most of) their hand-picked, "too-young" Sitters would vote the way those Ajah heads wanted. I guess she was right about the Ob5, but not about the too-young Sitters. Either the Ob5 were too subtle in their support so the new Sitters were unaware of their "obligations," or their influence was less than they thought. Or both.

I think Takima should have started to worry more when the second woman to stand was her own hand-picked TYS, and numbers 4 through 10 were the rest of them. But as noted, by then it was far too late to do anything about it.

Edit to add @116
Eugenie Delaney
118. EmpressMaude
Wetlanderw@117

It tells me, also, that for one thing, Siuan and Egwene had not yet figured out that the Ob5 had been sent by their Ajah heads or any of that.

Actually, I don't know if Siuan and Egwene *ever* figure that out that the Ob5 were sent by the Ajah Heads. Right? Can someone correct me if I am wrong?
Alice Arneson
119. Wetlandernw
EmpressMaude @115 - Presumably they voted for Egwene because they realized that they couldn't stop the Hall from choosing an Amyrlin, so they went with the candidate least likely (in their view) to be able to consolitdate power and prove to be an effective leader. Egwene would fit neatly into their plan to mostly do nothing; the Hall would continue maneuvering around each other and nothing would happen. They hadn't counted on Siuan's & Leane's machinations and political acuity, nor Egwene's strength of character and native intelligence. (Or, if you're an Egwene-hater, her sheer cussedness and bull-headedness.)

same @118 - I don't know that they did, or that they vocalized it, anyway. Siuan knew there was something wierd about the Salidar selections, but as far as I know she had no visibility of the similar situation in the Tower (that was given us by Seaine), and I know she didn't have the knowledge of the Ajah-heads-convocation we have. It may be one of those things that fades away in the reunification of the Tower and we never know if they know what the "mystery" was.
Tricia Irish
120. Tektonica
Hi All. **waves to all** I'm on vacation in NYC, and am out in the country this weekend with no books. :-( But I am enjoying the running comments, er, arguments. Keep up the good work, as I have nothing to add.

Great post Leigh. Thanks for not dwelling on the second chapter...what is there to say? Sigh .

**waves again to MOM** We miss you!
T C
121. Freelancer
Let's talk about Chapter 20.

No, let's do.

"Tai'shar Kandor."
A killer line every time.

And Nynaeve is, well, Nynaeve. Only she could get upset because her husband doesn't take advantage of the particulars of their wedding vows. But she's sure he's going to. But he just acts amused. Which enrages her. And yet, it is she, not Lan, looking for shadowed corners in haylofts at every turn.

Oh yes, let's hate Elayne for her supposed arrogance, Egwene for her supposed lack of ethics, Gawyn for his supposed lack of reason, but let's love Nynaeve in spite of her lack of anything resembling common sense when it comes to direct dealings with any male of any brand, including the one she loves, to whom she has promised herself.

Nynaeve is everything that is loved about her. And yet has more personality problems than Rand at his worst.

RE: Elayne's study of ter'angreal. Three different objects cause unintended and undesirable reactions. Two to herself, one to those around her. It seems that the warnings from Vandene and Adeleas are valid, and that women being harmed by studying ter'angreal is a reality, not just a cover story for the Black. I'm not saying that the Black couldn't take advantage of such a thing, but without direct evidence to suggest it only what is knowable remains, and Elayne's actions here show it as more plausible that when women were burnt out or killed by ter'angreal, it was merely that. Also what are the odds that every sister the Black needed to rub out was a student of ter'angreal?

Just saying. Why yes, Occam, I am invoking you yet again. Hope you don't mind.


Aviendha. Is running a close second to Nynaeve. She says Rand tricked her. But she should be able to see by this time that Rand did only as she could have predicted he would do, if she paid any attention whatsoever to how his Two Rivers upbringing guided his actions. She takes a page from some of the commentors here and prefers to think he acted underhandedly, rather than honestly and with noble intentions, regarding the gift that she intended to use "...to buy my toh from him". And this leaves her completely frustrated and upset because she's in possession of a king's ransom in gems. Perfect sense, of course.
Julian Augustus
122. Alisonwonderland
Wetlander @117:
Total agreement. (Is that a first? ;))

Of course not. I agree with you on most things, and since you are always so eloquent there isn't usually much I can add. We disagree on a few things (Cadsuane and Berelain, to name two) but you are still one of the real gems on this board. Tai'shar Seattle!
chaplainchris
123. Jonathan Levy
Alisonwonderland@112

Thank you for taking the trouble to post such a clear explanation of the proceedings. You have certainly improved my understanding of this meeting.
Antoni Ivanov
124. tonka
@Alisonwonderland@112

I agree. Very nice. Though I think that if she really wanted that law not to pass, she would have spoken regardless of custom. But Morvrin talking to her before, and Egwene's declaration to wait 30 days at least, put enough seeds of doubt and indecision that she went trough with the proceeding. And before she can do anything, the law passed.
chaplainchris
125. sushisushi
@85 Wetlandernw
Why would a Blue or a Yellow go poking around laws that are well over a thousand years old? It's not like they have been considering declaring war on anyone lately, and old laws are much more the purview of Browns or (possibly) Whites.

Why would a Blue know about this law indeed? Why would Siuan know about it in the first place, anyway? Other than cementing her place with Egwene as the go-to woman for arcane bits of Tower history, why would Siuan, an Amyrlin raised from the Blue, end up knowing that particular piece of information? My suspicion on this one is that Siuan wasn't just an Amyrlin raised from the Blue, but an Amyrlin who knew that the Dragon had been Reborn. I don't think that Siuan spent twenty years sitting on her hands or even wrangling with the Hall, but that her extensive research into Tower history was part of her effort to plan for the Tower's role in the Last Battle, which she was fully expecting to happen in her lifetime. I think that her continual emphasis on strong Amyrlins, weak Amyrlins, Amyrlins who rose, Amyrlins who fell, is the result of her own work to figure out how the Amyrlin should lead the Tower in the last days. After all, if you're leading such a group of powerful women, how could you get them to work as one, focussed on the one objective? I think that she discovered the Law of War and was planning to use it herself to force the Tower to follow her lead to the Last Battle, but that events overtook her. It's been noted here before that she sees Egwene as a second chance and my suspicion is that she ended up using a version of the same plan to cement Egwene's power as Amyrlin, one who has much-vaunted ties to the Dragon Reborn, in addition to Siuan's own training in being an Amyrlin.
Birgit
126. birgit
we know that Sheriam, Carlinya, Morvrin and Nisao were to talk to the sisters to plant "seeds." But as far as I can find that is all we know of the instructions.

"Why are you doing this, Mother?" she asked instead. "All of it, today at the lake, calling the Hall tonight. Why did you have us spend all day yesterday talking about Logain to everybody we met?

Just ten. She had been so sure. Siuan had been so sure. Logain alone should have been enough, given their ignorance of the law involved. Pelivar's army and Arathelle refusing to admit that they were Sitters should have primed them like a pump.

Displays of anger were strictly forbidden in the Hall, but Moria's eyes blazed, and her Illianer accent was thick with it. "Why do you wait? Elaida did steal the stole and the staff! Elaida's Ajah did make Logain a false Dragon, and only the Light knows how many other men! No woman in the history of the Tower did ever deserve this declaration more! Stand, or hold silent from now about your resolve to remove her!"

TPoD ch. 19

However, one still wonders why the Ob5 stood for Egwene as Amyrlin in the first place, though.

They thought that electing a child as Amyrlin shows that the rebels are not really serious.
Antoni Ivanov
127. tonka
@125.sushisushi

That is very much true, another Aes Sedai that has spent a lot of time researching, after she finds out that the Dragon is reborn, is Cadsuane (because she told us so in her POV) and Verin, most likely. But Romanda or Leleine didn't have a clue that the Dragon was reborn. So why would they care about old and obsolete laws...
Charlie McMurchie
128. FromtheLangToun
Am I alone in thinking that much of Egwene's MOA here is down to Siuan? I'd taken from Capter 16 that it was Siuan who knew the Law of War & how to use it.

sushisushi@125 gives very good reasons why it would have interested her especially as she knew - from NS - that the Dragon had been reborn.

It is Siuan who convinces Egwene that she must present herself to the Hall as "a woman in control of herself, not a girl being ridden by her heart"

It was down to Egwene to to carry it off, not an easy task, but how far would she have got without Siuan?
diane heath
129. jadelollipop
Just musing about the contrast between Egwene as Amyrllin and Elayne becoming queen of Andor,esp since they are back to back in this portion of the re-read. (In WH I am in chap 7 aka The Streets of Caemlyn --slow going) Egwene was expected to be a biddable child (shows ignorance of Two Rivers folk) and a puppet by the Hall. Elayne grew up thinking she would be queen somewhat easily. Her problems stem from Rand stating he would "give her the throne" which made everyone fear that she would be a puppet so opposition arose. Egwene was summoned and used her new skills to Travel via TAR to Salidar so we were spared a chapter 20 travelogue.
It is not til Elayne gets to Caemlyn and talks with Dyelin that she begins to see the degree of problems.
Is Dyelin a Siuan counterpart for Elayne?
I know keeping all of the AS straight is difficult as is keeping all of the claimants straight.
OTOH her guardswomen more like Rand's maidens. :)
chaplainchris
130. alreadymadwithlawofwar
sushisushi @125
Totally agree that was what Siuan was planning before Elaida undercut her. This is a woman who spent practically her entire Aes Sedai life in the White Tower. Starting off as assistant to the Blue spymaster, before becoming the Blue spymaster herself. Then as perhaps the youngest Amyrlin to be raised aside from Egwene herself. She'd have had a front row seat of Aes Sedai politicking and would have known how difficult controlling sisters and Sitters could be. She would have been researching into ways an Amyrlin could legally take on absolute powers even for a temporary period. Enough to see them through the Last Battle.

tonka @127
True. And I agree w/ Wetlandernw @85. Lelaine and Romanda, despite their seniority would have little reason to poke around in the archives for Laws that have not been used in centuries. Browns maybe, or Grays who specialize in studying laws, or possibly even Greens as preparation for War should have been foremost in their agenda.
Bonnie Andrews
131. misfortuona
It occurs to me that Siuan would have had reason to study past Amyrilins even had she not known about the DR.
She was the youngest woman raised to the shawl ever (IIRC). Lacking in personal experience, a smart cookie like Siuan, would have done well to learn all that she could from the successes and mistakes of those who had come before her.

Mis-musing, not sleeping, on a Sunday morning.
Tricia Irish
132. Tektonica
Hi Mis**waves**.
Still in rural Pennsylvania, enjoying the incredible beauty...back to NYC today.

I'm not getting much reading done so I'm just reading and enjoying all the debate here.
Richard Fife
133. R.Fife
Just to beat Bela a hair bit more: Aes Sedai do have an obligation to fight the shadow and assist the Dragon in doing so. One could (in a legal mumbo-jumbo kind of way) argue that Aes Sedai should have expected to have to one day follow Rand. Let us not forget that there is a line in the Prophecy's that pretty clearly states it will happen:
"The unstained tower breaks and bends knee to the forgotten sign."
OK, maybe not completely straight forward, but pretty durn close. Also, the SAS who were knelt did rather blatantly and unapologetically broke his rules.

In the end, both are still the standard revenge fantasy of putting someone "in their place" and, as Leigh pointed out back at Elayne's putting down of the SAS in Ebou Dar, all it usually does is give a small respite and then make things 10 times worse. That the SAS gain some small appreciation for Egwene as a manipulator is not exactly to her advantage. I will be interested to see how Egwene's hold on the tower works out in the next two books now that her war powers are gone.
R B
134. MasterAlThor
Easy like a Sunday morning....

The unethical debate.

Here is the simple truth. I'm a simple man, and I like things to be simple. I don't always get what I want, but such is life.

Ok.

How can anyone say that having your own shortcomings used against you, for the profit of another, is ethical behavior?

Egwene used the Sitters(ignorance, prejudice, etc) to futher her agenda. That is what makes her actions unethical.

DragonofthewhoooIstayeduptoolateSeptoftheI'mpayingforitnowAiel
Valentin M
135. ValMar
"How can anyone say that having your own shortcomings used against you, for the profit of another, is ethical behavior?"

This is the modus operandi in RL political and commercial life. And sports.
And what is Egewene's profit in this case?
It is (in no particular order): 1- her life; 2- important step to unifying the WT in the face of the Shadow opposition. With Elaida not the Amyrlin.

Eg and Suian used clever non-violent political and legal moves to achieve this. Whilst, as we know, even non-BA AS can be deadly ruthless.
chaplainchris
136. alreadymadwithASgames
MasterAlThor @134
Egwene didn't write the rules of the game here. Neither did Rand at Dumai's Wells. The Aes Sedai did. That is why we enjoy all these little instances of the Aes Sedai getting their comeuppance. Because frankly speaking, they deserved it. They set the stage on which they lost. Egwene and Rand are simply playing by the rules the Aes Sedai set. And seeing them outplay the Aes Sedai by the rules they have set, justifies their respective positions as main characters.
Maiane Bakroeva
137. Isilel
Folks, that was some clever analysis of Takima's actions! A very convincing one, too.

FromtheLangTuon @128:

Am I alone in thinking that much of Egwene's MOA here is down to Siuan?

Oh, absolutely. IMHO, it is pretty clear that the War Powers plan was of Siuan's devising - we even got Egwene's hint re: Siuan's intricate plotting ability, when she talked to Talmanes in the previous chapter.
Still, Egwene was the one who had to carry it out, which was no small feat.

And I couldn't agree more that Siuan when she was Amyrlin looked it up for her own use during the TG. I find it all the more strange that Siuan didn't search for info re: how to actually prosecute said war once she had the powers...


Speaking of secret archives, I thought that every Amyrlin was supposed to study them, even Elaida had a stray thought that she had no time for them currently, but intended to peruse them.

ValMar @135:

Eg and Suian used clever non-violent political and legal moves to achieve this.

Which, in my book is far more ethical than achieving stuff via naked threat, leave alone backing it with action.
But then, I never understood the negative view of WT "manipulations" as a whole.
I actually approve that the WT preferred to convince people without resort to war. IMHO, that made the WT far more ethical than most rulers, leave alone famous conquerors.
Tess Laird
138. thewindrose
R.Fife- I would imagine that Egwene will call a War Vote for TG - and I really don't see to much opposition happening. Especially after the attack on the Tower itself by the Seachan. She had been warning everyone about them from her days in Salidar to her days as a 'captive' in the Tower. She is on a politcal high now, and I think savy enough in her own right to understand this.

However, I am in the camp that not includng Siuan in her counsels will be a very bad thing. I hope she gets through her displeasure of Siuan. (Chapter 45 The Tower Stands - tGS)
"I haven't decided what to do with you yet, Siuan," Egwene said in a softer voice. "But my anger has been kindled. And my trust has been lost. You will need to soothe the first and stoke the second if you wish to enter my confidence again."


tempest™
chaplainchris
139. sushisushi
@137 Isilel: On Siuan's role in Egwene's MoA, there is certainly an argument that it really is Siuan's MoA-by-proxy, but, as you say, it's still Egwene who has to stand up there and hold her nerve for it to work. I'm currently on TGS in my own re-read and there's quite a big deal being made of various people, including Siuan, realising that Egwene really is her own Amyrlin and not any sort of a puppet or stalking horse (Bela jokes aside).

As to why Siuan hadn't done more research on how to use the War powers - I wonder if this is exposing the difference between her expected scenario and how the Law ended up being used? As alreadymad said @130, Siuan was focussed on the Last Battle. She
could have been intending to use it to direct the Aes Sedai and Warders in some sort of assault on Shayol Ghul, either led by the Dragon or in order to break his path. I doubt in a million years she expected to use it to force a rebel Hall to besiege the Tower itself.

A side point here - do we ever get any viewpoints from Siuan as to what she expected the Last Battle to be like? I know one of the characters said they were expecting something like the Trolloc Wars over again, only bigger, but I can't remember who it was (one of the Borderlandsers, maybe?)
chaplainchris
140. alreadymadwithtrollocwave
sushisushi @139
That was the late great Pedron Niall who thought it would be a huge wave of Trollocs. As a secular leader who would rather do without Aes Sedai support, it was the logical scenario for him to envision, and more importantly the one in which he would have the most use and preparation for.
It's Verin and Herid Fel who has us looking in other directions for the kind of conflict the Last Battle would be.
Julian Augustus
141. Alisonwonderland
Jadelollipop @129:
Her problems stem from Rand stating he would "give her the throne" which made everyone fear that she would be a puppet so opposition arose.

Er, no. Her problems stem from the fact that her mother, under Rahvin's compulsion, had alienated all the powerful nobles in Andor, including even her closest friends and supporters, to the extent that most nobles wanted the Trakands out of power. Even if Elayne had been in Caemlyn when Rand pulled his troops out of the City, she would have faced opposition from the other major houses. Rand had nothing to do with her problems (in fact, Rand's stated preference may have helped if it was part of what convinced Dyelin not to claim the throne herself.)
chaplainchris
142. sushisushi
alreadymad @140 Ah, yes, that would be Niall and his conviction that it would be a battle that he could actually win, with none of those pesky channelers about :) Whereas so far, we have Alviarin and the Black Ajah, Taim and his crew of evil laughers, the seven(?) remaining Forsaken, not to mention random Darkfriends, Shadowspawn of all varieties, and the expected Tide'o'Trollocs. A few thousand Whitecloaks would be able to clean that up, nooooooo problem, yepyepyep.
chaplainchris
143. alreadymadwithniall
sushisushi @142
Can't really blame the guy. He rose to the top rank among Whitecloaks. It's natural for him to plan for the one scenario he could win. He was even in the process of trying to attract allies to help in carrying it out. That puts him one up over Elaida.
Antoni Ivanov
144. tonka
@140.alreadymadwithtrollocwave
I suspect that the Last Battle will be something like at the end of The Eye of The World (Symmetry , writers love it!), but at much bigger level. The battle at Tarwin Gap will be just a distraction, the real battle will be somewhere else, something else. What exactly though? I don't really have any guess.

@141.Alisonwonderland
Rand's phrasing didn't make matters easier but yeah, the real problem stem from Morgase's blunders under Rahvin's control.

As a side note, unrelated, there is one thing certain that Rand completely secure Elayne's Throne in Cairhien. After what happened to Colavaere, no one would dare do anything else (besides Colavaere herself killed the more ambitious candidates before she took the Sun Throne). They even sent proclamation (Winter Heart) inviting Elayne to claim the Throne.
Though obviously, pretenders to rule don't have much regard for the Dragon Reborn wishes. First Colavaere who claim the throne despite Rand's wishes and with Rand's two armies in sight, Arymilla still went on and besiege Caemlyn.
Julian Augustus
145. Alisonwonderland
M A T @134:
How can anyone say that having your own shortcomings used against you, for the profit of another, is ethical behavior?

Let me put the situation in real life terms. There are two factions with opposite views of the way forward on an issue (say, for example, on illegal immigration). One side proposes a law to address how they see the problem. The other side does not bother to find out any details about the proposed law or its potential consequences, yet is completely arrogant and feel that if the question is put to a vote the electorate will easily vote the law down, so they call for a vote without any campaign or attempt to persuade the electorate of the wrongness of the proposed law.

Meanwhile, the other side that proposed the law know fully the consequences of said law, and have previously pointed out to the electorate the problems (with illegal immigration) as they see it. So they explain to the electorate why they think the proposed law will solve the problems, and go along with the vote (called by the other side!). Obviously, the proponents of the law hope that their arguments and prior examples offered to the electorate will convince them to vote for the law, while the opponents believe they have enough votes to quash the law so they don't even campaign, just say get on with the voting.

It so happens that the electorate agrees with the arguments and examples offered by the proponents, and vote for the law. A completely democratic process that I'm sure you'll say you believe in.

Yet, you keep insisting that because the opponents of the law were ignorant, overly arrogant, and took the electorate for granted (their shortcomings, you call it), the proponents were acting unethically in winning the vote! Would you say the same if this happened in RL? I am really baffled by your position.
chaplainchris
146. Subbak
Alisonwonderland@145:
That is not a proper comparison. The RL analogy would be if a party tried to pass a law on an issue (say, immigration), and somewhere inside the law inserted an article about tax cuts, totally irrelevant to immigration.

The opponents would be incompetent for not realising this, but this would still be unethical. I agree there are worse types of unethical (nobody ever said otherwise), but please stop acting as if this behavior was beyond reproach.
chaplainchris
147. Subbak
Great summary of the sitting, though, you did clarify a number of issues.
chaplainchris
148. Itaintrite
I've re-read The Wheel of Time series numerous times... but could never get past book 10 (or was it 11, when he tried to clean the taint?). I'm okay with fragmented novels where there are multiple plots going on at the same time, but when your main character disappear for most of the book... it's kind of off-putting.
Mikey Bennett
149. EvilMonkey
M A T @134:

How can anyone say that having your own shortcomings used against you, for the profit of another, is ethical behavior?

In addition to Allison's comments @145, I attempt to flip that particular comment. How can anyone say that using your strengths, whatever they are, to achieve your goal legally is unethical behavior? Egwene had a job to do and not much influence, not very many tools to accomplish her goal. So she turns that very disregard for her skills or opinions into a strength, and does it within the full letter of the law. If you contend that her actions were unethical then I do not see a way where her actions here could ever be ethical. She did not do it by force of arms even though she is the strongest person in the camp and has full army backing. She didn't do it via Compulsion even though she knew the full strength weave thanx to Moggy. She instead did it within the rules and guidelines set down by numerous generations of sisters, and did it in a particularly Aes Sedai kind of way. To use that argument, its almost like saying LeBron James is unethical because he uses his size and athleticism to triumph over his opponents. Or Steve Nash, who isn't blessed with such athleticism or height, yet still being able to succeed in the NBA because he uses his excellent court vision to his advantage. Are they being unethical because they are using the situation and their own strengths to their advantage? Just think, if the sitters were not complacent, ignorant of the very laws that govern them (and so they have a responsibility to know no matter how old the law is) and dismissive of the girl they elected Amrylin then the War Vote would never have passed. I don't know, maybe Egwene counting on the peeps who technically work for her to be stupid is unethical?

Shadowkiller
Mikey Bennett
150. EvilMonkey
one more thing, if you have been placed in the position of authority that the Sitters are in, then you are not allowed to have the particular shortcomings that led the Law of War vote to go in Egwene's favor. If you are not knowledgable of the laws that govern your own organization, then you should not be allowed to hold a position of authority in your organization.

Shadowkiller
Henry Loose
151. schrodinger
so. we have two people. one smart person and one dumb person. they sit down for a game of chess. the smart person wins continuously because the dumb person cannot comprehend the game, but continues to want to play. is it unethical for the smart person to continue to win because they understand the game better, and the dumb person refuses to learn? The sitters should have realized that because the situation was so drastic, because the Tower had become so divided, that a vote for war was possible.
Brandon Wood
152. brad21088
I could be completely wrong on this and/or someone's already proposed this answer, but to the whole "Elayne marching to Caemlyn" thing: isn't there some sort of ritual/tradition/protocol about assuming the throne? I thought she said she had to march into the city or something like that and couldn't just Travel straight to the castle. But maybe my memory is wonky.

It was right about here that I really started to like Egwene. She became my favorite character after this chapter. Yeah, she pulled some shady political moves, but, unfortunately, that's really all politics is about. In a perfect world, it would be great if she could calmly and rationally explain to everyone why she thinks things need to be done a certain way, but people don't work like that. Anyway, not trying to say she's the most ethical character ever, but I like her because she's smart, resourceful, strong, and gets stuff done that needs to be done.
Theresa Gray
153. Terez27
Oh yay, Egwene-hating. Good luck to the defenderers; I find it exhausting at the best of times.

itaintright@148 - Why is that off-putting? One of the points of the series has been that it's not all about Rand. Every person by his side has an important role to play in the Last Battle. I always thought that RJ's ability to leave Rand alone for a while to go play with other characters was one of his strengths; most authors are dependent on their main hero for too many things. There are other reasons to leave Rand alone at the places where he's left alone. He was absent for most of book 3 because he was going through some psychological issues that RJ wanted to be vague about; same for the later books, with Lews Therin.
chaplainchris
154. Subbak
Terez21@153: No one here is hating Egwene. We can say that it was slightly unethical and still think it was awesome and the right thing to do...
Jonathan Lynn
155. kreeble
I am quite confused as to what exactly would have been an 'ethical' option for Egwene. Please enlighten me.
Theresa Gray
156. Terez27
Subbak@154 - that's good to know. I was reluctant to read all the posts because I can't stand Egwene arguments. I will agree with those saying that there was nothing unethical about it, though (since it is indeed a responsibility of legislators to know the law). And I love the fact that Takima held her tongue, and only voted with her compatriots for solidarity, and a pretense at continuing to follow their Ajah Heads' orders. I'm glad it was cleared up in TGS that they were starting to side with the rebels; that explains a good many things.
diane heath
157. jadelollipop
@141 Yes the fact that Rahvin got control of Andor and Morgase resulted in a Succession rather than a straight forward Daughter-Heir takes throne (if such a thing exists.:) ) but in the eyes of the characters --Elayne and Dyelin for 2 --- Rand's comment about "giving her the throne" caused a great deal of the trouble. Fear of a puppet would result in a revolt by the common man per Elayne. The fact that Elayne was laying claim as Daughter-Heir not because of Rand caused Dyelin to support her rather than be her greatest threat.
My original comment,however was merely a compare/contrast to the we need a puppet (AS about Egwene) to the "No not a puppet" faced by Elayne
@148 Winter Heart is #9 --Rand cleanses Taint.
Pritesh Patil
158. MatHornsounder
I have written his poem here, as a tribute to RJ and the WOT series, and would like to share it with you.Its called the Path to Tarmonn Gai'dom, and even reflects our own path to the final book!! :D :)

Hope you folks like it!! ;)


Path To Tarmon Gai'don

The Wheel of Time turned
and the end of the age nearer churned

Tarmon Gai'don was beckoning
as all races came to the final reckoning

New spring was past
and the search for the foretold saviour was vast

With destinies dice cast, Fate's simple company marched towards the eye of the world
as the Great Hunt for the Horn unfurled

the Dragon Reborn as the final bastion of hope brightly burning
to face once again The Shadow rising
the fires of heaven rent the skies asunder
and the Lord of chaos clove the world with booming thunder

The crown of swords finally conquered
as the Heroes walking on a twisting path of daggers completely haggard'
and In the depth of Dark red winters heart
they arrived at the crossroads of twilight ;to a new start

The Knife of dreams pierced the soul
as the Gathering storm forward stole

yet onto the Towers of midnight they marched in pursuit
to face the dark one resolute

as they sped fast towards Tarmon Gai'don....
Towards Tarmon Gai'don.....
The end of all ages drawing near
Until all that was became a Memory of Light without fear.....





-posted it here due to some typos on the re read thread! hope you folks find it a worthwhile read!!
Antoni Ivanov
159. tonka
150.EvilMonkey
That's not true, the rulers cannot possibly know every single bit of law that has ever existed. Most certainly not when we are talking about institution that has existed for 3000 years. It would probably take you years just to read every single law that has been passed since the Tower was created. It's humanly impossible . That's why, even in our age, lawyers specialize in different areas (criminal law, international law, administrative law, Property law, Labor laws, Human rights Laws, Commercial law, Society law, Company Law, Banking laws ... I think I made my point :p). They need to know the most important bits, and if some specific law is necessary at some point, there would be specialists in this law that they can ask (Takima! or some Tower Librarian, in our case). (that they were stupid enough not to ask is whole another point)

You probably think that Law of War would be fairly important, because in the age we live right now (Afghanistan, Israel, Iraq, etc.) It's present-day for us, but for them it's something they haven't had for 1000 years.The Aes Sedai has probably never thought that they would have to declare war on anyone. There is no point in wasting time in something that you, think, are very likely never going to need. The only people who cared to studied it are people who knew they would probably need it (Siuan, for instance, since she knew that the Last Battle is coming) (and some Tower Librarians, who had specialized in that area, I imagine). But for an institution that hadn't known war for thousand years it's no wonder that they have forgotten.
diane heath
160. jadelollipop
@152 you might be thinking of chapter 28 where Elayne has to approach the Palace gates alone. She is travel worn but "Tradition and legend said women who first approached in splendor always failed"
Tricia Irish
161. Tektonica
Mathornsounder@158:

Beautiful. The Book titles never made more sense. Thank you!
Hugh Arai
162. HArai
tonka@159: Actually the fact none of the others know the Law of War makes me wonder what they had planned to deal with Elaida. They were going to whine at her till she abdicated perhaps? Mope with great vigor? If they weren't planning on declaring war, what do they need Bryne and the army for? And if they were, they should have known the laws involved in doing so.

MatHornsounder: Very creative. I like it!
Hugh Arai
163. HArai
Subbak@154:
No one here is hating Egwene. We can say that it was slightly unethical and still think it was awesome and the right thing to do...

Actually that's where you lose me in this discussion: I understand ethical to be defined as
'Being in accordance with the accepted principles of right and wrong that govern conduct of a group or profession'


so when you say unethical and the right thing to do, I'm left wondering what you actually mean.
chaplainchris
164. Subbak
Harai@163: Well take Dirty Harry. His actions are deeply unethical (and illegal, too, but that's not the point), yet killing the Scorpio was the right thing to do.

Or, to remain in WoT, freeing Logain without telling the Hall was unethical, yet it was the only course of action that could maintain Egwene as Amyrlin and avoid an unnecessary death.
T C
165. Freelancer
MasterAlThor@134

I see your Lionel Ritchie.

It is not unethical to take advantage, in an adversarial situation, of any weakness of which you are aware or suspect on the part of your adversary. It is gamesmanship. If your opponent chooses to misunderestimate you, and the result is that you get your way and they do not, that is on their own heads. Egwene did not demand that a vote be cast on her question without further deliberations, that was Romanda. Egwene did not prevent any discussion at all of the conditions or ramifications of the war vote. Would there have been any point whatsoever to her calling the question if she also stated that in passing her war vote, the Hall would be ceding to her significant authority, making it possible for them to actually proceed with the reason they were there, to oppose Elaida's usurpation? Had Egwene done that, most likely the only vote she would have received would have been Delana's.

She played them. They fell for it. But it was up to them to have enough sense to prevent it, and they proved that they didn't, which to me proves that Egwene (with Siuan's guidance) is who should be calling the shots. Full stop.
chaplainchris
166. Subbak
Ok, I really think we should move on to something else re:ethics, so I hope this will crap it up.

First, we don't all have the same definition of what's ethical or not for a politician. Therefore, we'll probably never all agree.

Secondly, at the beginning of this discussion, I too believed Egwene had done nothing unethical. However I had forgotten about the custom of not speaking during the vote. You may say that Romanda is the one who stopped the debate before it started and called for a vote. But Romanda is only one sitter.
If Romanda had been Egwene's ally, many more would probably agree that this was unethical use of the custom. Therefor, why does the fact that Romanda was unaware of being used make this suddenly more ethical?
Alice Arneson
167. Wetlandernw
sushisushi @125 - Well said! I hadn't addressed the fact that Siuan was a Blue and obviously knew about that Law. I found your comments very interesting, especially in light of the recent discussion about what Siuan was doing for the past 20 years. Since she knew the Dragon was reborn and Tarmon Gai'don was coming, she clearly ought to have been preparing in some way. Very logical, that she would be researching Tower leadership, getting ideas from past Amyrlins, etc. (BTW, while the secret histories were supposed to be required reading for Amyrlins, not all of them would be able to put things together the way Siuan-the-puzzle-master would.) Knowledge of the Law of War would definitely be of use in planning for TG. I look forward to (hopefully) learning what else she had planned. She knew about the BA and that she really didn't know who to trust, so she couldn't straight-forwardly set the Greens to researching battle techniques; did she do some of that research as well? Cadsuane has also known TG is coming; I wonder what else her research has turned up? Will they come together to form plans? Who else will give surprising contributions? What else will be in Verin's notes about how the Last Battle will come off? Okay, that was a tangent, but you (and tonka @127) stirred up a whole new avenue of speculation for me. :)

birgit @126 - Thanks!! So they had sent sisters in secret to talk to the Sitters about Logain, not to encourage them to look for signs of disrespect from the nobles. That's probably the only "unethical" thing I've seen, because they know it was a lie that Logain was set up as a false Dragon by the Red Ajah. (Ummm. Siuan knows it's a lie. Does Egwene know? I can't remember.)

FromtheLangToun @128 - Quite true. We get the fun of seeing Egwene own the Hall, and the plausibility of the plan being Siuan's all along.

Isilel @137 - "I find it all the more strange that Siuan didn't search for info re: how to actually prosecute said war once she had the powers." How do you know she didn't? If this is (and I think it's a logical assumption) one of the things she researched and planned during those 20 years since New Spring, it's fair to think she probably had a few other plans up her sleeve. They haven't come to the forefront yet, since she's been busy with the Tower split & resolution. As the next two books progress, maybe we'll see some more fruit of her efforts.

Also: "Which, in my book is far more ethical than achieving stuff via naked threat, leave alone backing it with action. But then, I never understood the negative view of WT "manipulations" as a whole." Exactly!!

146. Subbak = "The RL analogy would be if a party tried to pass a law on an issue (say, immigration), and somewhere inside the law inserted an article about tax cuts, totally irrelevant to immigration." Hang on there. Not even close. Aside from the fact that Egwene wasn't inserting articles into a law but working within the law as written, the "little detail they didn't notice" is anything but irrelevant to the subject. In the analogy Alisonwonderland gave, it would be more like including an irrevocability clause, or perhaps, stretching it a little, if you were proposing a law regarding illegal immigration, including a provision to speed up the process of legal immigration.

Kreeble - you're grey! 'grats, and welcome. ;)

HArai @162 - LOL!! Mope with great vigor, indeed!

same @163 - That, too. To me there's a vast difference between "that wasn't very nice because I didn't see it coming" and "that was wrong." Doesn't "unethical" mean "morally wrong even if not illegal?" I find that I'm very disturbed by the perception that being manipulative is the same as being unethical. If that's the case, then being a bully is straight-forward and ethical, but being the little guy who can verbally baffle the bully long enough to get away is unethical.
Julian Augustus
168. Alisonwonderland
Subhak @146:
That is not a proper comparison. The RL analogy would be if a party tried to pass a law on an issue (say, immigration), and somewhere inside the law inserted an article about tax cuts, totally irrelevant to immigration.

Absolutely not. The obscure information was quite germane to the issue and not irrelevant. The parallel real life comparison to this case would be, using the immigration analogy, if the president asked congress to pass a law declaring war against illegal immigration, but by an obscure rule of the congress, declaring war on anything gave the president dictatorial authority on that issue.
Alice Arneson
169. Wetlandernw
Subbak @166 - If Romanda had been Egwene's ally and, by collusion, deliberately called the question for the purpose of cutting off discussion before the rest of it could come out, it might indeed be considered unethical and you could hold Egwene responsible for it. Since Egwene not only had nothing to do with it, nor did anything to maneuver Romanda into doing it, but could not even have foreseen Romanda's action, it seems a bit... odd... to hold Egwene responsible for it. If my daughter is trying to manipulate me into giving her one cookie I don't think I want her to have, and then I hand her the whole cookie jar, how can anyone blame her for eating a cookie? Or two or three?

Alisonwonderland - much better analogy than mine. :)

EDIT to add - Subbak, I'd be really curious to know how you define "ethical" for a politician or anyone else.
chaplainchris
170. AndrewB
FromtheLangToun @128 wrote:
"Am I alone in thinking that much of Egwene's MOA here is down to Siuan? ... It is Siuan who convinces Egwene that she must present herself to the Hall as 'a woman in control of herself, not a girl being ridden by her heart'."

I disagree. This was Egwene's MoA. Yes, she relied on Siuan's advice, but the overarching plan was Egwene.

Remember the scene in LoC after Egwene is publically revealed to be Amyrlin. She first meets with Elayne and Nyn who congratulate her and then tell her that most of their discoveries are Moggy's. After Moggy is brought to Egwwene, Siuan comes to "instruct" her in protocol.

After dismissing Elayne, Nyn and Moggy, she lays down the law to Siuan. Egwene tells Siuan tells that Siuan may advise Egwene, but Egwene will be in charge. She then asks Siuan what advise she has to make the Salidar rebels start marching towards Tar Valon.

(I do not want to take the time to dig out my copy of LoC and provide actual quotes for this scene.)

IMHO, the Egwene haters here conveniently forget/ignore this scene. Right from the start, Egwene is not the puppet that everybody (including Siuan) thought she would be. Her training with the Aiel, her observing Rand and listening to Morainne teachings to Rand, help sharpen her political acumen.

(I say sharpen her political acumen and not form a political acumen. Egwene always had an inherent political acumen. Witness her plan to sneak Rand into the woman's quarters in Sheinar back in TGH. If you recall, Morainne thinks to herself that Egwene may go far in the hierarchy of the Tower if she can learn to hone her instincts.)

The above is why I think Egwene's successfully manuevering to declare war on Elaida was her MoA and not Siuan's.

MatHornsounder @158: Loved it. In a macro/scholarly sense, it captured the essence of the WoT.

Thanks for reading my musings.
AndrewB
Sharon E.
171. Sulin
MatHornSounder@158- Beautiful and well written. Thanks so much for sharing it with us! :)
Bonnie Andrews
172. misfortuona
MatHS@158
An excellent use of your non-scholarly hours. Thank you for sharing.

Mis-mellow
R B
173. MasterAlThor
MatHS

Good job brother.

Regarding Egwene,

I am not an Egwene hater. I give her mad props for compentency porn in TGS.

My problem with her actions here is that I believe that they are unethical. I believe this because she games the system to get what she wants, which in this case is complete control of the SAS.

I understand why she did what she did. In a way I even applaude her actions. I just don't agree with them.

There was an example given of the two chess players. Yes it is unethical if the smarter one knowingly continues to play against the dumber one.

He is taking advantage of the other. That, IMO, is unethical.

But, it has been put forth that we shelve this topic. So I immediately call for a vote.

DragonoftheitsbeenalongdayAiel
Henry Loose
174. schrodinger
::stands::
Alice Arneson
176. Wetlandernw
P.S. Not that I really care if anyone else wants to continue to discuss, but I probably won't. There are, after all, other things of interest in these chapters. I shall move on to them.
Henry Loose
177. schrodinger
::psst!:: wetlandernw! no talking while voting!
:-)
chaplainchris
178. Subbak
::stands::
Don Barkauskas
179. bad_platypus
Wetlandernw @167
...because they know it was a lie that Logain was set up as a false Dragon by the Red Ajah. (Ummm. Siuan knows it's a lie. Does Egwene know? I can't remember.)
Yes, she does; from tPoD, Ch. 15:
"They'd have never summoned me to be Amyrlin wihtout your lie about Logain and the Reds."
Antoni Ivanov
180. tonka
@163.HArai
It means that sometimes the ends justifies the means. It's a very fine line to walk and it's very easily to cross it without realizing, but sometimes it's true.

As a note I am not taking a side in the argument if this is ethical or not because I don't really know. It depends on what your definition is for ethical (and I don't mean the dictionary definition)

Isilel @137
She probably has had many plans, a good commander always plans in all possible directions but sometimes (Law of Unintended Consequences) things take a turn that you've never expected. Then you have to create new plans as you go along.
Thomas Keith
181. insectoid
Well, since by now it's an Ex-Horse...

::stands::

Bzzz™.
Joseph Blaidd
182. SteelBlaidd
Just to get things started in a new direction.

I Like Ch 20. I like the slice of life chapters because they help give a sense of reality to the work and provide a breathing space where we can get ready for the next crisis. They also are useful for passing on little character tidbits and details about the world. So I didn't find ch 20 boring at all.

P.S. I'm puzzled at the debate about the ethicalness of Politics in CH 19. For those who think Egwene ans Suan's tactics were unethical, what should they have done instead?
chaplainchris
184. Jonathan Levy
thewindrose@138

However, I am in the camp that not includng Siuan in her counsels will be a very bad thing. I hope she gets through her displeasure of Siuan. (Chapter 45 The Tower Stands - tGS)

"I haven't decided what to do with you yet, Siuan," Egwene said in a softer voice. "But my anger has been kindled. And my trust has been lost. You will need to soothe the first and stoke the second if you wish to enter my confidence again."


This paragraph, in my mind, has huge red danger signs on it saying "WARNING WARNING WRITTEN BY BRANDON SANDERSON". It sticks out like a sore thumb. It's what you'd get if Jackson Pollock was in charge of restoring the Sistine Chapel.

Character-wise, it makes no sense. It is completely unjustified (Siuan was acting in good faith in an unforseeable circumstance), and achieves nothing (Siuan is already 100% supportive of Egwene, why alienate her?). Egwene comes across like a pampered brat lording it over her younger sister. Jordan's characters do not indulge in petty psychobabble about their emotional state, as if they were jotting down notes to discuss with their shrink next Thursday.

Ugh.

There are a few other sections like this in the tower battle scenes. The one that comes to mind (I don't have the book in front of me) is when Siuan tells Bryne that she wants to go to save Egwene, and he tries to dissuade her by saying something along the lines of "Oh no Siuan, you're starting to lie too often, I don't think that's good for you, maybe I shouldn't help you".

Ugh Ugh.

I suppose you can't avoid all of these when one author finishes anothers' work. I enjoyed TGS, so I can't complain too loudly about BWS. But it still hurts my eyes to read those sections.

Ugh.
Tess Laird
185. thewindrose
Jonathan Levy-
Interesting thoughts, and I am glad you put in the *disclaimer* that you understand BwS is finishing this off. However, since Egwene and Siuan are a major plot line together, I think RJ prolly had extensive notes on how their relationship is to play out. (And there are prolly indications of how Bryne and Siuan get together as well.) An unfortunate thing about notes are they are thoughts of how something should happen, however the author may travel down that line of thought and then change his mind.

And, I am going to stop there because while I am very sad that RJ is no longer with us, we have BwS doing a pretty damn good job, and I am grateful for it.

::stand:;;

Stand in the place where you live
Now face North
Think about direction
Wonder why you haven’t before
Now stand in the place where you work
Now face West
Think about the place where you live
Wonder why you haven’t before


If you are confused check with the sun
Carry a compass to help you along
Your feet are going to be on the ground
Your head is there to move you around
{...}

If wishes were trees the trees would be falling
Listen to reason
Reason is calling
Your feet are going to be on the ground
Your head is there to move you around

So Stand (stand)
Now face North
Think about direction, wonder why you haven’t before
Now stand (stand)
Now face West
Think about the place where you live
Wonder why you haven’t


Stand in the place where you are (Now face North)
Stand in the place where you are (Now face West)
Your feet are going to be on the ground (Stand in the place where you are)
Your head is there to move you around, so stand.


tempest™
R B
186. MasterAlThor
Tempest,

You are naughty for putting that in everyones head.
LOL

TheDragonStillStands
James Jones
187. jamesedjones
184 Jonathan Levy

Don't worry. I'm sure you're right, too. If you've read the Mistborn trilogy, you'll know that that's how BwS portrays leaders. It was a paragraph very remnicent of Elend's character when he finally began to assume real control of his empire.
Tess Laird
188. thewindrose
What ever do you mean MasterAlThor:)::Eyes open wide to innocent setting::

I have to pick on the Chess thought. My son plays Chess, and he loves to have a chance to play against Masters(which he is not...yet). He says the best way to learn for him is to play against a better player and see how they think things through. One of the camps he is going to this summer is held by a Chess Master, and he is looking forward to it. I am not saying he likes losing all the time, but he does like learning and using what he learns to get better. Now my daughter on the other hand, would rather brow beat her way into winning. She enjoys physical competition better, but she does like Chess. She just hates losing, and doesn't want to learn by losing;)

Different Strokes for Different Folks:(Everyday People)
Sometimes I'm right, but I can be wrong
My own beliefs are in my song
The butcher, the baker, the drummer and then
Makes no difference what group I'm in

I am everyday people
Yeah, yeah

There is a blue one who can't accept the green one
For living with a fat one trying to be a skinny one
Different strokes for different folks
And so on, and so on and scooby-dooby-doo

Ooh, sha, sha
We got to live together

I am no better, and neither are you
We are the same, whatever we do
You love me, you hate me, you know me and then
You can't figure out the bag I'm in

I am everyday people
Yeah, yeah

There is a long hair that doesn't like the short hair
For being such a rich one that will not help the poor one
Different strokes for different folks
And so on and so on and scooby-dooby-doo

Ooh, sha, sha
We got to live together

There is a yellow one that won't accept the black one
That won't accept the red one that won't accept the white one
Different strokes for different folks
And so on, and so on and scooby-dooby-doo

Ooh, sha, sha
I am everyday people


tempest­™(Iamreallyintoworktodayasyoucantell)
R B
189. MasterAlThor
Oh Tempest.....

You do realize that the youngins will only know that from the car commercial right?

While your song fits better I am more of a

Saturday in the park
I think it was the Fourth of July
Saturday in the park
I think it was the Fouth of July

People talking, people laughing
A man selling ice cream
Singing Italian songs

Can you dig it?(Yes I can)
And I've been waiting for such a long time
For Saturday

Another day in the park
You'd think it was the Fourth of July
Another day in the park
You'd think it was the Fourth of July

People dancing, really smiling
A man playing a guitar
Singing for us all
Will you help him change the world?

Can you dig it?(Yes I can)
And I've been waiting for such a long time
For Saturday

Slow motion riders
Fly the colors of the day
A bronze man still can
Yell stories his own way
Listen children all is not lost
All is not lost
Oh no, no

Funny days in the park
Everyday is the Fourth of July
Funny days in the park
Everyday is the Fourth of July

People reaching, people touching
A real celebration
Waiting for us all
If we want it, really want it

Can you dig it?(Yes I can)
And I've been waiting for such a long time
For the day

DragonoftheIcansingtooAiel
Tess Laird
190. thewindrose
Hey Dragon - were you with us back when we were picking songs out for characters(I know sub was). We may have done it a few times, but the one I am remembering is tSR10!!!(that is when I caught up to this wonderful blog:) So in memory of that wonderful thread, I am going to start thinking of songs that relate to characters(to bad sub isn't able to play today:(

One for Mat:
Eagles Take It Easy Lyrics

Well, I'm running down the road
tryin' to loosen my load
I've got seven women on my mind,
Four that wanna own me,
Two that wanna stone me,
One says she's a friend of mine,
Take it easy, take it easy
Don't let the sound of your own wheels
Drive you crazy
Lighten up while you still can
Don't even try to understand
Just find a place to make your stand
and take it easy

Well, I'm a standing on a corner
in Winslow Arizona
I'm such a fine sight to see
It's a girl, my Lord, in a flatbed
Ford slowin' down to take a look at me
Come on, baby, don't say maybe
I gotta know if your sweet love is
gonna save me
We may lose and we may win though
we will never be here again
so open up, I'm climbin' in,
take it easy..."Alright"

Well I'm running down the road trying to loosen
my load, got a world of trouble on my mind
lookin' for a lover who won't blow my
cover, she's so hard to find
Take it easy, take it easy
don't let the sound of your own wheels make you crazy,
come on baby, don't say maybe
I gotta know if your sweet love is gonna save me, ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh,ooh

Oh well you know we got it easy
We oughta take it easy, yeah


tempest™
Jeff Weston
190. JWezy
Regarding the "nothing happened" chapter - this one always struck me as intentional. Given that the chapter ends with "Three days later, the first explosion came.", I thought that Jordan was playing with the idea of writing a nothing-nothing-nothing-nothing-ZAP! sort of thing.

Recall the convoluted chapter in EOTW where Mat and Rand are on the road to Camelyn and things happen in all crazy order, sometimes twice. He acknowledged later that his intent was to accentuate the state of mind of the characters by messing with the timeline of the chapter, and that given the reader response, perhaps it did not come out as well as he might have wished. Perhaps it was just another literary experiment gone wrong.

I freely admit that there are lots of "nothing happens" chapters coming up, of course.
James Jones
191. jamesedjones
190 thewindrose

Ahhh. It's hard to argue with The Eagles, but Mat is definitely "Renegades, Rebels and Rogues" by Tracy Lawrence. :)
R B
192. MasterAlThor
Yeah Tempest, I was around then. And I can't remember who helped me with it but we came up with this for Rand.

Brain Damage
(Waters) 3:50

The lunatic is on the grass.
The lunatic is on the grass.
Remembering games and daisy chains and laughs.
Got to keep the loonies on the path.

The lunatic is in the hall.
The lunatics are in my hall.
The paper holds their folded faces to the floor
And every day the paper boy brings more.

And if the dam breaks open many years too soon
And if there is no room upon the hill
And if your head explodes with dark forebodings too
I'll see you on the dark side of the moon.

The lunatic is in my head.
The lunatic is in my head
You raise the blade, you make the change
You re-arrange me 'til I'm sane.
You lock the door
And throw away the key
There's someone in my head but it's not me.

And if the cloud bursts, thunder in your ear
You shout and no one seems to hear.
And if the band you're in starts playing different tunes
I'll see you on the dark side of the moon.

DragonofthethankgoodnessIgotmyhomeworkdoneAiel
R B
193. MasterAlThor
Burned if I can think of a song for Perrin.
Tess Laird
194. thewindrose
jamesedjones - I have very little knowledge of Country so I looked it up - and that is a good one!

MasterAlThor that is so on for Rand:)!

tempest™
Jeff Weston
195. JWezy
For Perrin, how about "Every Breath You Take" by The Police?

Every breath you take and every move you make
Every bond you break
Every step you take, I'll be watching you
Every single day and every word you say
Every game you play
Every night you stay, I'll be watching you
Oh can't you see you belong to me?
How my poor heart aches with every step you take
Every move you make and every vow you break
Every smile you fake
Every claim you stake, I'll be watching you
Since you've gone I've been lost without a trace
I dream at night
I can only see your face
I look around but it's you I can't replace
I feel so cold and I long for your embrace
I keep crying baby, baby please

Oh can't you see you belong to me?
How my poor heart aches with every step you take
Every move you make
And every vow you break
Every smile you fake
Every claim you stake, I'll be watching you
Every move you make
Every step you take, I'll be watching you, I'll be watching you
Every breath you take
Every move you make
Every bond you break
Every step you take, I'll be watching you
Every single day
Every word you say
Every game you play
Every night you stay, I'll be watching you
Every move you make
Every vow you break
Every smile you fake
Every claim you stake, I'll be watching you
Every single day
Every word you say
Every game you play
Every night you stay, I'll be watching you
Every breath you take
Every move you make
Every bond you break
Every step you take, I'll be watching you
Every single day
Every word you say
Every game you play
Every night you stay, I'll be watching you
Every move you make
Every vow you break
Every smile you fake
Every claim you stake, I'll be watching you
Every single day
Every word you say
Every game you play
Every night you stay, I'll be watching you
Every breath you take
Every move you make
Every bond you break
Every step you take, I'll be watching you


Heck, even the repetitive lyrics fit him! ;-)
Sharon E.
196. Sulin
Oooh I'll play. When I hear this song, I always think of Rand.

Fight Inside
"Red"

Enemy, familiar friend
My beginning and my end
Knowing truth
Whispering lies, and it hurts again

What I fear
What I try
The words I say and what I hide
All the pain; I want it to end
But I want it again

And it finds me
The fight inside is coursing through my veins
And it's raging
The fight inside is breaking me again

It's still the same
Pursuing pain
Isn't worth the light I've gained
We both know how this will end
But I do it again

And it finds me
The fight inside is coursing through my veins
And it's raging
The fight inside is hurting me again
And it finds me
The war within me pulls me under
And without you
The fight inside is breaking me again

It's nothing
(It's everything)
It's nothing
(It's everything)
It's nothing
(It's everything)
It's nothing
It's everything!

And it finds me
The fight inside is coursing through my veins
And it's raging
The fight inside is hurting me again
And it finds me
The war within me pulls me under
And without you
The fight inside is breaking me again

It's breaking me!
It's breaking me!

I'm falling apart!
I'm falling apart!
R B
197. MasterAlThor
JWezy,

LOL!!!

Spot on brother.

DragonoftheI'mtoobusylaughingAiel
R B
198. MasterAlThor
Whoooo Hoooo Sulin.

That is great.

DragonoftheSulincarriesmyhonoroftheGabblyAiel
Sharon E.
199. Sulin
Here's another one for The Dragon Reborn:

Perfect Insanity
"Disturbed"

Come inside and be afraid
Of this impressive mess I've made
If you take a look now you will find

I have thrown away my prize
Done away with paradise
See what's going on inside my mind

Please let me out
Please let me out
Please let me

Branded like an animal
I can still feel the burn in my mind
I do believe that you made your message clear
(I think I'm losin' my mind, I think I'm losin' my mind)

Depriving, isolating all that I feel
Leaving me with images I know are not real
Are those words of condemnation that I hear?
(I think I'm losin' my mind, I think I'm losin' my)

Come inside, now I implore
Do you think you can restore
The crucial pieces missing from my brain?

What seems to be the matter dear?
Why do you cry and shake with fear?
I've only had the best dub me insane

Please let me out
Please let me out
Please let me

Branded like an animal
I can still feel the burn in my mind
I do believe that you made your message clear
(I think I'm losin' my mind, I think I'm losin' my mind)

Depriving, isolating all that I feel
Leaving me with images I know are not real
Are those words of condemnation that I hear?
(I think I'm losin' my mind, I think I'm losin' my)

Don't know how much I can take
Secret thoughts inside me wake
I've lost what was within me
Oh sweet insanity

Don't know how much I can take
Secret thoughts inside me wake
I've lost what was within me
Oh sweet insanity

Now I try again to find
The thing that was my mind
Behold the undersigned
Who said I?ve lost my mind?

I try again to find
The thing that was my mind
Behold the undersigned
Who said I?ve lost my mind?

I've lost my
Mind, I've lost my mind, I?ve lost my
Mind, I've lost my mind, I?ve lost my
Mind, I've lost my mind, I?ve lost my
Mind, I've lost my mind, I?ve lost

Mind, I've lost my mind, I?ve lost my
Mind, I've lost my mind, I?ve lost my
Mind, I've lost my mind, I?ve lost my
Mind, I've lost my mind, I?ve lost my mind!
Tess Laird
200. thewindrose
Jwenzy - Even the repetitive lyrics fit him - That is funny:)

Yay Sulin!

Here is one for Berelain;)(Waitresses-Know What Boys Like)

I know what boys like
I know what guys want
I know what boys like
I've got what boys like

I know what boys like
I know what guys want
I seen them looking

I make them want me
I like to tease them
they want to touch me
I never let them

I know what boys like
I know what guys want
I know what boys like
Boys like, boys like me

But you you're special (I might let you)
You're so much different (I might let you)
Ooohh would you like that? (I might let you)

I know what boys like
I know what guys want
I know what boys like
I know what's on their minds

I know what boys like
I know what guys want
They talk about me

I got my cat moves
That so upsets them
Zippers and buttons
Fun to frustrate them
They get so angry
Like pouty children
Denied their candy
I laugh right at them

I know what boys like
I know what guys want
I know what boys like
Boys like, boys like me

Nah nah nah nah nah,
nah nah nah nah nah

I see your sad now (I will let you)
Sorry I teased you (I will let you)
This time I mean it (I will let you)
Anything you want (You can trust me)
I really want to (You can trust me)
How would you like it? (You can trust me)

SUCKER! hmhmhm

I know what boys like
I got what guys want
I know what boys like
Boys like, boys like me

Nah nah nah nah nah, nah nah nah nah nah,
nah nah nah nah nah, nah nah nah nah nah,
nah nah nah nah nah, nah nah nah nah nah


tempest™
R B
201. MasterAlThor
Tempest...

I am going to pee my pants.

ROFLMAO

DragonoftheROFLMAOAiel
Sharon E.
202. Sulin
WindRose-ROTFL!!! that's perfect for Berelain.

SulinoftheROFLMAOAiel
R B
203. MasterAlThor
Here is something for LTT on how he thinks of himself. And believe me I outta know.

OneRepublic: Tyrant

Watching myself when I'm taking strides but here comes the moon and it feels and it feels like an informer quick run away hide before they see you, you know it is all, all a glow

Walking on water seems parlays now you got my trust and it feels, and it feels like sabotage when I'm pulling triggers back on myself you know it is all I know, is all I know

And it feels so real from the outside looking in
And it feels so real from the outside
From the outtttt
From the outtt tyrant
Tyrant tyranttt

Feel capable of most anything this crippled bears gonna sing gonna bring you all the years is quick turn around look your shadows could could not beautiful lies for you is what they do ..

And it feels so real from the outside looking in
And it feels so real from the outside
From the outtttt
From the outtt tyrant
Tyrant tyranttt

I'll stay with apathy im blind but I can see the tyrant to the bone
I'll stay with apathy im blind but I can see

Don't justify me
Don't justify me
Don't justify meeeeeee

No nononononon

And it feels so real from the outside looking in
And it feels so real from the outside
From the outtttt
And it feels so real from the outside looking in
And it feels so real from the outside
From the outtttt

DragonofthestillROFLMAOthankstoTempestAiel
Valentin M
204. ValMar
Oh dear, we've reached this stage... It's like a Mexican wave at a football game. Ehm, soccer ;)
chaplainchris
205. Looking Glass
Isilel@47: Siuan is probably the one who told Egwene the law, and as far as the sitters know, Siuan can’t lie flat-out. They really can’t disbelieve her. Well, they can, but they don’t know it.

And sealed session of the hall or not, we know they can decide to bring in outsiders if they have questions.
--

schrodinger@51: Yeah, Rand gets progressively more into zero-tolerance, you-will-obey-me mode, but his taking it to an extreme is one of the more direct ways that he’s falling to the dark side, and getting closer to handing victory to the shadow.

In this specific case, forcing all the Aes Sedai there to swear fealty to him may or may not been an overreach (though under the psychologically-traumatized circumstances it’s certainly understandable either way). But obstructive though the rebels were, it’s hard to argue that any of them deserves something that comes pretty close to forcible enslavement (Alanna, again, being a special case; turnabout and all that).

Of course, had he not done it, he might be facing issues with the prophecies. But then that’s true of everything he does, no matter how ill-advised.
--

On plans for TG: The lack of a fleshed-out plan does not necessarily mean one shouldn’t be ultimately in charge. Look at Egwene and Gareth Bryne: Bryne knows way, way more about what actually needs to be done to fight a war. Egwene sets policy and leaves the means of execution to him. He’s the one who knows what needs to be done, but she’s the ultimate authority. It’s one of the better examples of cooperation in the books.

If the Aes Sedai (or Tuon, for that matter) believe that they’re better at making policy decisions than Rand, then it makes sense that they’d seek out some similar arrangement with (and hence level of control over) him, even if they know he has a better understanding of how the last battle needs to be fought (and it’s not clear if they do know that).

There are, of course, two big problems for the AS. One, the various AS factions have their approach to Rand skewed by varying degrees of fear and paranoia about male channelers, particularly ones who raise armies and topple kingdoms. Two, the evidence suggests the people running the AS factions are, frankly, pretty terrible at making policy decisions (Egwene now nonwithstanding).

(Tuon, of course, has her own problems, including more channeler paranoia, bad prophecies, the EVA seriously underestimating the Shadow, etc.)
--

smcyc@74: Yeah, Delana’s Black, and Moria is as well. Really, the BA has presumably voted in every major decision since the Trolloc Wars; the tower can’t possibly unravel it all. And it’s not clear there’s much point to trying to retcon stuff, anyway; it wouldn’t really change the situation as it stands. The rebels went to war; nobody thinks Siuan is still Amyrlin.
--

R.Fife@133: The prophecies do rely on Rand doing the “wrong” thing at times, though; look at the chain of decisions that got him to Dragonmount.
--

sushisushi@142: Didn’t we only get Niall’s perspective on the last battle after he’d gotten the Fain treatment, too? Though it seems like Fain’s presence tends to amplify one’s bad qualities, rather than adding things outright.


--

On consideration, it speaks well of Dain Bornhald that he seems to have avoided the worst effects of Fain’s presence. Sure, he’s got a vendetta and a drinking problem, but he seems quite reasonable compared to Elaida or Niall or Toram Riatin.
--


James Jones
206. jamesedjones
154 Subbak & 157 Terez

Actually, there are a few of us who hate Egwene. For me, it's probably because we're in her head. And she sees absolutely nothing wrong with lying until wiser heads (like Amys and Suian) point it out to her.

If it weren't written from the perspective that RJ uses, I could probably rationalize that she really hates lying, but does it anyway because it's a desparate situation. But that's not the case. When we read Nyneave's perspective, she practically has a psychotic episode everytime she lies (which easily rivals Rand's). I mean, terrified of tea? Really?

Egwene's self-perception as the smartest person on earth, and the lack of any reaction to lying as a bad thing until Amys beats her with it, puts me firmly in the hate camp. It gets worse when Suian has to explain it to her as if she's a child in order for her to see the value in the Oaths.

No. Egwene always believes the ends justify her means. This is a very real type of person that I can't stand, and RJ displays an amazing brilliance in bringing her to life.
Chin Bawambi
207. bawambi
Tempest that might be the best 200 post of all time

BawambioftheImgonnahavethatsonginmyheadalldaynowAiel
Chin Bawambi
208. bawambi
Was going to say several things but everyone else all ready beat poor Bela again.

BawambiofthedoublepostAiel
Erik Haakensen
209. Oldwizard
I am still with you! Not that it matters to anyone anyway since I have bare been here at all, as a poster that is. :)

It's just that I don't find this book (PoD) very interesting, so I'm holding my wit and wisdom (not much, true, but... :P) for Winters Heart and so on.

Just dropping a note to say that old wizards don't die easily!
And, I have to say, Egwene's masterly handling of her "betters" were... well, masterly! Well done!

Leavin' now, don't mind me.
Tess Laird
210. thewindrose
Back from lunch, and I found one for Egwene and Rand - It's the musical version of their upcoming smack down!!! Annie = Egwene(and she gets the last word of course) Frank = Rand

(Anything You Can Do Lyrics by Berlin Irving)


ANNIE: Anything you can do I can do better
......I can do anything better than you
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can, yes, I can

FRANK: Anything you can be I can be greater
......Sooner or later I'm greater than you
ANNIE: No, you're not
FRANK: Yes, I am
ANNIE: No, you're not
FRANK: Yes, I am
ANNIE: No, you're not
FRANK: Yes, I am, yes I am

FRANK: I can shoot a partridge with a single cartridge
ANNIE: I can get a sparrow with a bow and arrow
FRANK: I can live on bread and cheese
ANNIE: And only on that?
FRANK: Yes
ANNIE: So can a rat

FRANK: Any note you can reach I can go higher
ANNIE: I can sing anything higher than you
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can

ANNIE: Anything you can buy I can buy cheaper
......I can buy anything cheaper than you
FRANK: Fifty cents
ANNIE: Forty cents
FRANK: Thirty cents
ANNIE: Twenty cents
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can, yes, I can

FRANK: Anything you can say I can say softer
ANNIE: I can say anything softer than you
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can, yes, I can

FRANK: I can drink my liquor faster than a flicker
ANNIE: I can do it quicker and get even sicker
FRANK: I can open any safe
ANNIE: Without being caught?
FRANK: Sure
ANNIE: That's what I thought (you crook)

FRANK: Any note you can hold I can hold longer
ANNIE: I can hold any note longer than you
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can, yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't - yes, you can

ANNIE: Anything you can wear I can wear better
......In what you wear I'd look better than you
FRANK: In my coat
ANNIE: In your vest
FRANK: In my shoes
ANNIE: In your hat
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can, yes, I can

FRANK: Anything you can say I can say faster
ANNIE: I can say anything faster than you
FRANK: Noyoucan't
ANNIE: YesIcan
FRANK: Noyoucan't
ANNIE: YesIcan
FRANK: Noyoucan't
ANNIE: YesIcan
FRANK: Noyoucan't
ANNIE: YesIcan

FRANK: I can jump a hurdle
ANNIE: I can wear a girdle
FRANK: I can knit a sweater
ANNIE: I can fill it better
FRANK: I can do most anything
ANNIE: Can you bake a pie?
FRANK: No
ANNIE: Neither can I

FRANK: Anything you can sing I can sing sweeter
ANNIE: I can sing anything sweeter than you
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Oh, yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can
FRANK: No, you can't, can't, can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can, can, can, can
FRANK: No, you can't
ANNIE: Yes, I can

tempest™(Noitwasnotaliquidlunch)
chaplainchris
211. chaplainchris
jamesedjones @ 206 - ok. I'm not sure I buy your assessment of Egwene's character when the books start, but let's say I do. Egwene's an adolescent when we start on this journey, and I say that not to excuse anything but to point out that she has changed and grown tremendously. If she starts out self-centered, immature, and overly sure of herself, what 16 year old isn't at times?

I'd say Egwene's most overarching character trait has been an ability to *learn*, to transform herself. And this requires some humility, an ability to see merit in other ways and customs. Unlike practically every other character, she shows an open-mindedness and willingness to change her behavior when presented with a new way.

At times that seemed like an adolescent throwing herself into whatever new thing came along, but she's matured to the point where she takes the best things she's learned along the way and synthesizes them into something worthwhile.

Every other character this side of the Dragonwall is mystified by the Aiel at some level. Even Rand, who's half Aiel and surrounded by Maidens, doesn't really get them. Egwene does, to a degree that only Elayne begins to approach due to her bond with Aviendha. But Egwene understands them, lived like them, and has moved beyond - but taking what she learned from them and learning to be better than she was.

As Aes Sedai and Amyrlin, she's soaked up her lessons with Siuan. Yet she's still open-minded enough to embrace even some of the "novice" lessons she's given in Knife of Dreams, knowing that there's more education she still needs.

When she first hears that saidin may have been cleansed, unlike every other Aes Sedai, she's not incredulous or disbelieving; she entertains it as a very serious possibility to be verified. She doesn't generally dismiss things as impossible b/c they clash with her world-view; her world view can be changed.

After being rescued from the Tower, she spends time contemplating her own errors, not just the errors of others. And she alone of the major characters decides that one of her mistakes is in hoarding information. (Thank God!)

She's one of the few who has been willing to communicate important information - not just fostering communication between Ajahs, but talking honestly with folks like Mattin Steppaneos and sharing weaves with the Wise Ones. Note that the WOs, and even Aviendha, are more reserved with her than she with them.

For her ethics, Egwene believes firmly that you must pay for what you do wrong - even if she decides to break a rule b/c she sees the goal as that important, she doesn't think the ends *justifies* the means. She believes, like the Wise Ones, in doing what you must; then paying for it. For her, evil comes from trying to escape the consequences of your actions. And she doesn't deviate from that...she's always been willing to pay for her actions, afaict.

Long post.
James Jones
212. jamesedjones
211 chaplainchris

Wow. Why would you do that to yourself?
R B
213. MasterAlThor
Tempest,

Are you sure?

DragonofthegettingmyhandsdirtyfixingmytruckAiel
Barry T
214. blindillusion
I miss Mat.



BlindoftheStillLovingTheHellOutOfTheReReadSeptofthe
StillDon'tHaveAnythingToSayAboutTheseChaptersAiel
chaplainchris
215. chaplainchris
@ 212

Just wait 'til I set it to music and upload to Youtube!
James Jones
216. jamesedjones
215 chaplainchris

LOL. No, I meant, why would you post such a long post to a confirmed button-pusher, nose-tweaker, and rick-roller. :D
Chin Bawambi
217. bawambi
Just one disagreement Chris

My main point of contention is re: the TR male crew. She is rather unbendable in her reaction to all three that she grew up with - I really hope that Rand and Egs have a real conversation in ToM.

One aside - I still think - stubbornly I'll admit ;) - that some of Egs behavior after Halima is more than just bragging of a FS - I really think the massages will turn out to be more than just an interruption of TAR for her - unless of course this is the DO's preferred battleground against the light ...

BawambiofthecantcomeupwithanythingnewrightnowAiel
Alice Arneson
218. Wetlandernw
chaplainchris @211 - Nice!!! I like your analysis.

same @215 - LOL!
chaplainchris
219. chaplainchris
@ 217 Bawambi - I agree about her sorta-blind spot with the TR guys, but: 1) she never stopped supporting Rand when we first found out he could channel, unlike the other 2 guys; 2) she's able to understand some of what Rand went through in the box - channeling a bad experience into increased empathy for somebody else being a not-common trait for WOTers. Though it remains to be seen if this affects her actions; 3) she defends Rand pretty eloquently to the AS; 4) she's always had somewhat warmer relations with Mat than the other ladies - there are moments of mutual respect in LOC, for example, in between the posturing. Note that Egwene's the closest thing Mat has to a female friend prior to Birgitte.

So yeah, Egwene's at her most childish when with her childhood friends; this is pretty common, though. And I've hopes for her rising above it as she continues to grow. (And for them to do the same! I *hope* that conversation with Rand isn't a disaster!)
Tricia Irish
220. Tektonica
My goodness this thread has gone sideways off a cliff and rebounded too....
Lots of good yucks here. I wish I could remember song lyrics and contribute, but I'll just have to laugh at you guys!

Chaplainchirs@211: I agree with your assessment of Egwene in general,
however, I am a bit fearful of her at the end of tGS. She seems to be a bit full of herself now, and I think her berating Siuan and threatening her with "excommunication", so to speak, is troublesome. Siuan is her teacher and mentor in Tower lore and law and a powerful advisor. She still needs her.

**waves at Blind** Nice drawing! Just about how I feel about these chapters too....I miss Mat and Rand. :-(
Sharon E.
221. Sulin
@Tempest-ROTFL! Are you sure? ;D

Edit for: *waves at Tek*

SulinoftheCan'tWaitforAnotherRandorMatChapterAiel
Barry T
222. blindillusion
**waves to Tek** 'Tis not my drawing, but from xkcd.

It was supposed to be used to represent the sidelining of Mat. Perhaps... Meh... Ok. Sigh. Is it October yet?
Alice Arneson
223. Wetlandernw
SteelBlaidd @182 - I like chapter 20 too, although there's less to discuss on the surface. Still, first time through the recap I noticed this, as quoted by Leigh:
More and more of the Kin slid from horrified gaping to thoughtful observation. Perhaps Aes Sedai were not a different flesh after all. If Aes Sedai were just women like themselves, why should they subject themselves once more to the rigors of the Tower, to Aes Sedai authority and Aes Sedai discipline? Had they not survived very well on their own, some for more years than any of the older sisters were quite ready to believe? Elayne could practically see the idea forming in their heads.
I seem to remember, the first few times through, thinking this was the coolest ever. Yay for equalization and all that. Now I have more mixed feelings about it, for some reason. Maybe it's knowing the repercussions of people getting more and more uppity later, and how awkward that gets. Maybe it's because, for all their faults, at least the Aes Sedai have an organization and a purpose, and some hope for a way of working together in the upcoming TG. (Completely irrelevant - I saw a book yesterday titled SUPERGEDDON - A Really Big Geddon. Parody, of course, but for some reason it cracked me up.) Anyway, I'm wondering how good or bad a thing it is, for the Aes Sedai to be losing all their mystique in the eyes of the Windfinders & Kin.

As a literary device, it's very interesting to follow "the fall of the Aes Sedai" in terms of our perception of them, which is to some extent parallelled by the perception of certain characters (or groups, particularly the Kin) within the books. They start out all-powerful, mysterious, generally Light-side but not entirely safe. With familiarity, they turn out to be... well, human. They have more training and more education than most, they have a unique power and longer life, but they still have all the natural weaknesses of all humanity. In theory they have learned greater self-control than is required of most people, because of the power they hold, but they still have natural faults. Over all, I think this is a good thing in terms of literature, because it makes them much less "deus ex machina" and more believable people. Not quite as satisfying, maybe, because it's easier if the super-powered people are clear-cut Good and Evil, but the way the magic system is set up they ought to be merely human in personality and character. Still, I find myself wishing they had managed to retain the respect of the other channelers. Not sure why.

On the other hand...

you have different fingers.

So the other side of it is that one could hope that all this lack of respect might help the Aes Seday as a group realize that just because they have superpowers, they are not "better" than everyone else, and should be working hard to measure up to the reputation they thought they deserved.

Okay, that got a bit rambly and it's not very organized, but that's what you get with frequent child-interruptions, phone calls and varying other demands on attention... *sigh* Not going to retain guru status very long at this rate... *sigh*
Barry T
224. blindillusion
Hmm.I checked my Guru, 4th Order, Card at the door when we arrived at tPoD. Perhaps I'll be able to pick get it back around WH...though it may take until KoD.

Right now...I don't even think I would rate a Guru-in-Training Card. =|
Thomas Keith
225. insectoid
Wind @190: Ah... now there's a good song! Good ol' Eagles ;)

MAT @192: Hee hee hee...

Wind @200: BAHAHAhahaha!!

Blind @224: LOL

Now see what you people have started! ::looks at Sideways-O-Meter:: It's heading off the scale...

Bzzz™.
James Jones
226. jamesedjones
223 Wetlandernw
They start out all-powerful, mysterious, generally Light-side but not entirely safe.
Dang. First impressions can be all over the place.

I remember my first impression of Aes Sedai. It was when one of the villagers reminded Rand that it isn't safe to deal with Aes Sedai. I don't recall if this was the place where they introduced the whole, "The truth an Aes Sedai tells you, is not the truth you hear" bit. But my immediate thought was Robert Asprin's Myth series, and the Daveels in it. "If you think you've made a good deal with a Daveel, first count your fingers, then your limbs, then your relatives."

It stuck with me. lol

Needless to say, I've never been in favor of Aes Sedai (with a few exceptions) since then.
T C
227. Freelancer
Ok, I see what I've been missing here...

thewindrose@188

Sly Stone eh? Hmm, I think he just got out of jail (again).


MasterAlThor@189

Now you're talking, I'm a Chicago fan from the word Go. I still miss Terry Kath.


MasterAlThor@192

Roger that. ::ducks::


And, after that it gets truly dicey. You people...
::whistles tunelessly::
Barry T
228. blindillusion
The Sideways-O-Meter...

You mean we got that thing fixed?

After what we did to it?

Wow...

I guess with Bela controlling that a'dam Suffa really is...capable....
Alice Arneson
229. Wetlandernw
'Sokay, blind, we seem to be doing our level best to trash it again. :)
Theresa Gray
230. Terez27
The song lyrics were annoying me until I realized that they were spamming the Egwene argument.
Roger Powell
231. forkroot
For all the hand-wringing about Moria turning out to be BA (after she supports Egwene), if you think about it, it makes sense.

The BA wants to promote the Tower split. In other words, Moria's "secret agenda" is in direct opposition to Takima's "secret agenda". So it makes perfect sense for her to attempt to influence events so that there is more acrimony between the SAS and TAS.

On her coolness factor:
I think we're always disappointed when a character with some likable characteristics turns out to be a darkfriend. But doesn't this just make RJ's world more believable? You might say some darkfriends are more doctrinaire than others.

I actually always sort of liked Sheriam (so did Siuan in the old days) although there were always suspicions after the Grey Man incident. When we see her POV in TGS, we learn that she was more of a self-centered opportunist vs. a hard-core creep.

I don't deny that Egwene was right to have all the BA executed, but I'll never consider Sheriam as repugnant as certain Light-side baddies (e.g. Valda.)

Oh well ...So long, Moria ::sound of headman's axe in background:: - we'll never know you better. Maybe you had some additional redeeming qualities. Maybe if the circumstances had been right you might have come back to the Light (ala Ingtar).
chaplainchris
232. Subbak
chaplainchris@215: Can't wait to see your "Leave Egwene alone" video reach a million hits on youtube... :D
Bridget Sullivan
233. Ellid
R.Fife@4 inquires:

"So, I have a question. Why is "Kneel or you will be knelt" worse than "I tricked you with legal mumbo, now you are all my slaves". Because, isn't that what Egwene did? She decided that she knew better than these women old enough to be her grandmother and with (supposedly) vast political and worldly knowledge, so she used what was available to subjugate them and humiliate them at the same time."

Ummm, I realize that this conversation moved on days ago, but I just wanted to throw my little haymaker here.

Surely you can recognize a difference between Egwene using procedural subterfuge to gain the upper hand in a legislative assembly over women who gathered together and *summoned* her to be their leader and Rand allowing *someone else* to make use of the incipient threat of bloody bodily harm to subjugate women who came to rescue him?

I can't even fathom how people are even putting them on the same plateau. Not only does one, again, not involve the threat of bloody bodily harm, but it also doesn't make them "slaves." Or even captives, for that matter.

Another crucial distinction - Lelaine or Romanda or anyone who didn't like the fact that Egwene was just vested with extreme executive powers could.... resign as a Sitter. Could leave the rebel camp and go off and join that mysterious third faction hanging out out there somewhere. Hell, they could even return to Elaida and take their chances.

Merana Ambrey could... what, exactly? Refuse to kneel and been "knelt" by force? What option does the "kneel or be knelt" diktat leave Rand's would-be rescuers? They couldn't refuse, and then they were taken into the "parole" of the Wise Ones and treated like hostages.
Hugh Arai
234. HArai
Wetlandernw@223:
Still, I find myself wishing they had managed to retain the respect of the other channelers. Not sure why.


Probably because they're MoA if they actually earn that level of respect instead of just demanding it?
Just imagine how cool it would be to see more of them measure up to their own self image the way Moiraine and Siuan have. If Cadsuane manages it the concentrated awesomeness will threaten the pattern because damn that's one hell of a self image to measure up to! :p

@various: Egwene has proven adaptable and open to changing her world-view. I still wonder if she's going to be able to manage the big one: Treating men as equals instead of "wool-heads" to be managed. It's not really fair to put it all on her but as the leader of the Aes Sedai I don't see how she can be less than a shining example if people are actually going to respond, and I don't see Team Light doing very well if they can't manage men and women really working together.

I re-read her Acceptance ordeal today and this part worries me a lot:
This man, abandoned of the Light, has touched saidin, the male half of the True Source. Thus do we hold him. Most abominably has this man channeled the One Power, knowing that saidin is tainted by the Dark One, tainted for men's pride, tainted for men's sin. Thus do we chain him.

I really hope this is the Acceptatron skewing things with Egwene's fears, because that's not doing a bitter duty that has to be done, that's Aes Sedai thinking of male channelers the way the Seanchan think of Aes Sedai. If that's what Egwene has to overcome, I don't know if she can.
Alice Arneson
235. Wetlandernw
HArai @234
Just imagine how cool it would be to see more of them measure up to their own self image the way Moiraine and Siuan have. If Cadsuane manages it the concentrated awesomeness will threaten the pattern because damn that's one hell of a self image to measure up to!
LOL!! I surely would love to see that revelation. Personally, I think she's got it in her, so one of the reasons I'd love it would be to make all the Cadsuane-haters freak out. :P

For what it's worth, I don't think the passage you quoted really reflects Egwene's own thinking. In her Acceptatron vision she's seeing Elaida standing in front of a chained Rand and "the words she must be saying crept into Egwene's head." Unfortunately, we don't know much about how the Acceptatron works, so we don't know how much is based on the knowledge of the individual, the knowledge of the sisters running it, the general knowledge held by the inhabitants of the Tower... How much is true? How much is drawn from common knowledge? How much is "possible future"? But in her vision, she clearly didn't believe Rand was "abandoned of the Light" or she wouldn't have been trying to rescue him from Elaida, would she?
Heidi Byrd
236. sweetlilflower
I like the little "slice-of-life" chapters b/c they break up the fast pace of the books. Its stressful to sit and read about one battle after another. These little breaks in the story help to keep our collective blood-pressure down:) and they also help to humanize the characters. There is useful information in almost every chapter. I think of these chapters as what a narrarator would explain in about two minutes, but since we don't have an "outside" person saying, "The Kin and Sea Folk begin to see the Aes Sedai as people, the weather finally changes, here's how the SF marriage works, Elayne fianlly learns some caution, Nyneave waits for Lan to take advantage, Birgitte is still awesome, The whole party would fall aprt w/o Alise, Everyone knows about Rand and that he must face the DO, Ispan will not reveal any secrets of the BA and the BA may take Oaths to keep them from betraying each other, yadda yadda" we get to read about these happenings from someone's perspective. Okay, so after I scanned through the chapter to write down all of the useful information in it, I realized this chapter is not boring after all! I wrote a whole Wall 'o Text about all of the interesting things that happened :)

On another topic, I was also a little upset that the AS turned out to be so...human. I hoped that with their training and long lives, they would somehow...transcend the everyday foibles we all have to deal with in ourselves and those around us.
Heidi Byrd
237. sweetlilflower
I posted a few weeks ago that I finally got my Mom to read the WOT books, and I finally remembered something she brought up. It actually sort of pertains to the first chapter. She asked me how to pronounce Amyrlin because if you look at the word through modern semantics, it could mean without Merlin. In case there are some who don't understand, which I highly doubt, the prefix "a" means without. As we all know how fond RJ was of the Arthurian legends, and the WT is without men, I found this tidbit interesting.
Hugh Arai
238. HArai
Wetlandernw@235: I'm not worried about Egwene specifically. The possibility that occurred to me for how Egwene would know "the words she must be saying" would be if that's the standard "charges" given at a gentling, which would seem to indicate a very dark outlook on male channelers for your typical Aes Sedai. Abandoned of the Light with the taint being because of man's sin?
T C
239. Freelancer
sweetlilflower@236
On another topic, I was also a little upset that the AS turned out to be so...human. I hoped that with their training and long lives, they would somehow...transcend the everyday foibles we all have to deal with in ourselves and those around us.

Ahh, but we are given the truth of this very early on. In one of Moiraine's first training sessions with Egwene, on their way to Baerlon:
"You want to know that Aes Sedai are good and pure, that it was those wicked men of the legends who caused the Breaking of the World, not the women. Well, it was the men, but they were no more wicked than any men. They were insane, not evil. The Aes Sedai you will find in Tar Valon are human, no different from any other women except for the ability that sets us apart. They are brave and cowardly, strong and weak, kind and cruel, warm-hearted and cold. Becoming an Aes Sedai will not change you from what you are."


@237

Interesting thought about the nullifying prefix "a-". But our Arthurian story actually has two Merlin types, the two masters of Daes Dae'mar, and bound to one another by fate as surely as to Rand. Moiraine the female half is obvious as Rand's first serious guide regarding his ability and his destiny. Thom Merrilin is obvious in name, and provides Rand with a great deal of worldly common sense; the musician training which kept him and Mat fed for a time, and which still serves to soothe his soul when he uses it; and the underhanded, behind-the-scenes aid he provided Rand through his skill in the Great Game.
Maiane Bakroeva
240. Isilel
Wetlandernw @223:

They start out all-powerful, mysterious, generally Light-side but not entirely safe. With familiarity, they turn out to be... well, human.

Mmm, I don't think that there ever was any doubt about AS human frailty. Even in TEoTW it is clear that Moiraine has to struggle with her temper, that she is often frightened, that the TR kids alternatively drive her nuts and amuse her, etc. And in TGH in chapters with Siuan's party the AS faults are exposed in a very direct manner, too. Ditto in the later books.

Personally, I always thought that the AS shortcomings were expounded on very extensively in books 1-5 and there was no reason to turn them into complete idiots in the other half of the series ;). Somewhat competent people working at cross-purposes can screw up things as badly as any collection of morons or worse - as the AS were already doing.

Anyway, yes, IMHO various groups of channelers losing their respect for AS is a matter of concern - because it can't be overestimated how much their own codes of behavior were shaped by AS existence and/or direct intervention.

Like, for instance how using OP for selfish and violent aims just wasn't done - because it would have drawn the attention of the Tower.

Frankly, I always thought that lack of major unethical OP use by wilders and novices put out of the WT for "defects of character" wasn't very realistic, given the general AS laxness in tracking down (potential) channelers, but there you have it.
Apparently even folks who begin to channel and become DFs before they ever reach the WT (like Liandrin) never abused their powers too much.

Hm... I wonder what happens when a DF novice isn't strong enough to advance and/or fails the tests. I somehow don't see such people joining the Kin and their abilities would be an asset to any DF circle that they might attach themselves to, so why weren't they more of a problem, historically?

Re: war plans, I have been expecting Egwene, Siuan and maybe some other AS sitting down with Bryne and working out how to best combine OP and mundane strategies and tactics for many books now.

I also wonder if the test for the shawl ter'angreal can't be used for some battle training, as the AS can't practice the use of lethal weaves against each other and there is too little time to bring in live male channelers for non-lethal sparring against saidin users. That would certainly solve a lot of issues with AS battle preparedness despite the TG being a couple of months away, provided they start immediately and train like crazy...
If _that_ was Siuan's plan - well, it would make sense for her not to say anything until they were back in the WT.

Generally, it is a pity that we didn't see Egwene already implementing measures for post-haste TG preparation in her last chapter in TGS.

Like, for instance, freeing all the Accepted of teaching duties, forcing them to their full OP potential (in circles, so that they don't burn out), and preparing them for testing.

Ditto replacing only marginally useful chores of the novices/Accepted with something that genuinely needs to be done and only the channelers can do.

Ditto figuring out the minimal necessary amount of knowledge, both OP and not, for an Accepted and an AS.
Etc.
chaplainchris
241. stromgard
I realized the conversation about immoral acts or not done by Egwene has moved on but i wanna comment on something that i didn't see anyone else taking into account: exactly who the women are that Egwene is screwing over by Not Doing Anything Technically Wrong.

Two are Darkfriends, and IMHO anything being done against a DF is ok in my book, just because it is a DF you're doing it against and they can't technically be mistreated, they have earned everything they get by just being what they are. (I know many of you disagree with me on this one.)

Regardless of that opinion, they are enemies of the entire human race and it's very hard for me to conclude that you should play fair with them and give them a chance to influence what is happening.

Then you have the 5 "traitors" that are trying to bring the SAS back under the authority of a madwoman. Not likely to happen, since said madwoman is doing all she can to push them further away, but still, they are undermining the very thing that the SAS are all about, not to mention that if they succeed a lot of the people in SAS face the very real concept of being stilled and executed. The fact that they choose Elaida over the rebels and doesn't care much about the fate of the rebels at all makes it hard for me to sympathize with them.

And then Romanda and Lelaine, who are BOTH only after the title of Amyrlin for themselves and TBH, i haven't seen much in their behaviour that makes me think either would be a good Amyrlin. Lelaine especially is scary and devious, while Romanda isn't far better. (Egwene is actually hoping that they would be BA so she can get rid of them.) And when Egwene is finally Amyrlin and the WT is united, they are still harassing and being thornes in her sides as much as possible. Because they can.

The remaining nine sitters are "a group of squabbling brats with inflated opinions of themselves, too immature for more tempered minds to influence". I... think that part of the reason that they are eager to declare war is that they have a desire to get the sitters in Tar Valon kicked out of their seats and take their places. I can't really fault Egwene for trying to put them under her thumb, actually. Oh, and some of them are supporters of L or R, too.

Yes, Egwene is using the law to screw them over BUT! half of them are her enemies (not counting any Romanda/Lelaine cronies) and it's her only option to remove an evil, viscous madwoman from the position of the most politically powerful person in the world. (With the possible exception of Moridin, Rand and/or (nowadays) Tuon, but i dunno, the Amyrlin title is kinda awesome.)

Also, small comment about "kneel" at Dumai Wells.

I mean seriously, you have to consider this from Rands POV. He has FLED from Caemlyn to get away from exactly the very AS he is now facing, since he is afraid of being gentled. Then other AS, which he trusts, bring more AS close to him in secret, shield and capture him, and torture him horribly twice every day, keeping him in a sealed small box in the dark for the rest of the time, for many weeks. Eventually, he breaks free and capture many of his captors and who walks up to him? 9 of the AS that scared him away from Caemlyn and tried to bully him into obedience before that (and one made him a warder without asking, on top of that). And then two walk up to him, acting all proud and confident, which is EXACTLY the wrong attitude for them to meet him with at this particular moment. If there is something Rand does absolutely not wish to face right now, it is Aes Sedai acting like they are in control, especially not AS from a group that he is already wary and suspicious of. So he does what he feels he must, namely assure that they will not attempt to control, shield, gentle or put him in a box.

Me? I thought Rand was very much a good guy in that moment, considering what the AS has done to and against him the whole book. In fact, the SAS are lucky not to be thrown in cells as soon as he gets back in Cairhien. The WT AS? They are lucky to have their heads still attached to their bodies.

(Yes, it was bad forcing them to swear, but both sides of the AS have trying to pwn Rand the whole book. A man can only take so much until he starts to pwn back.)
Valentin M
242. ValMar
Isilel@240
Re: war plans with Bryne.
I am not surprised they haven't done so already. They haven't done so since the Trolloc wars, apparently.
My impression is that all various negative opinions that women/AS have towards men in WOT are distilled in their feelings vs soldiers. Maybe Egwene would've found it easier to convince her "daughters" all to become damane than to become integral part of the common military. Even the Greens seem to be affected.

Hopefully know that the civil war is over and the awareness of the presense of dread-ladies/lords, soldiers and AS will start working properly together. The black-coats and the Legion of the Dragon already have done it.
chaplainchris
243. Looking Glass
Sweetlilflower@237: Way (way, waaay) back at the beginning of TEoTW, Ishamael is mocking Lews Therin about how far he’s fallen:
"Once you stood first among the Servants. Once you wore the Ring of Tamyrlin, and sat in the High Seat. Once you summoned the Nine Rods of Dominion. Now look at you!"

Thus I’m not sure how much significance we can ascribe to the "a-", since it was apparently "ta-" first both in WoT history and in publication order. (Does anyone refer to "the Amyrlin" at all in TEoTW?)

Though I agree the name is yet another RJ reference to historical/mythic figures. Merlin’s a good possibility, given the whole “legendary wizard” thing. Or Tamerlane, or someone else that hasn’t occurred to me, or all of the above.
R B
244. MasterAlThor
Terez,

This is what we do. I happens when we are
bored with the current discussion thread.

Yep, it annoys some people, but just go with the flow and join in. It tis fun.

DragonoftheIgotabasementfullofSidewaysmetersAiel
Marcus W
245. toryx
Wetlandernw @ 223:

I seem to remember, the first few times through, thinking this was the coolest ever. Yay for equalization and all that. Now I have more mixed feelings about it, for some reason.

On the surface, the notion of the equalization is really pretty nifty and I have to agree that in my initial reads I felt those things to be cool too.

The problem is, when shifts in people's thinking about Aes Sedai change, it doesn't turn to equality but a reversal of the superiority. Whenever a group who can channel ceases to feel awe or fear of Aes Sedai, they don't embrace equality. They begin to think that they're superior and as a result they automatically start to treat Aes Sedai the way they do anyone who is not a member of their group. The Wise Ones, the Windfinders and the Kin all turn their noses down on the Aes Sedai (and everyone else) as less than they.

Maybe that's a realistic shift in perspective but I hate it. I hate the constant sense of superiority amongst those who can channel. The Wise Ones are perhaps some of the easiest for me to deal with because they don't place the ability to channel at the top end of the spectrum but there's still the unrelenting "I'm better than you are," when it comes to non-Wise Ones and non-Aiel.

Just once I wish someone would come to recognize that the Aes Sedai aren't all that and still treat them (and everyone else) with some measure of respect simply for who and what they are.
chaplainchris
246. chaplainchris
@220 Tektonika - Egwene certainly still needs Siuan - I suppose I just don't think the rift between them will be very wide, so I'm not worried about it. Egwene's had to reprimand Siuan before, after all, but both still knew they needed each other.

Egwene's comments about what Siuan will need to do to enter her confidence once more indicates to me that they *will* be in each other's confidence again - by which I mean their friendship will continue. In the interim before they "make up", I fully expect that Egwene will call on Siuan as advisor just as she has been - it will just be a cooler relationship for a bit.
Don Barkauskas
247. bad_platypus
Isilel @240:
forcing them to their full OP potential (in circles, so that they don't burn out)
Interesting idea. I wonder if it would work? It may be that the buffer that prevents them from over-drawing in a circle would also nullify the effect of forcing. It may be the pushing of the channeling ability to the person's (current) limit (or slightly beyond) that creates the "forcing" effect.

At the very least, I suspect that the Aes Sedai don't know whether it would work or not. Maybe times are desperate enough that they should start experimenting, but maybe not. Definitely an interesting idea, though.
Maiane Bakroeva
248. Isilel
Bad_platipus @247:

Forcing in a circle should work, because Egwene was forced while being a damane (it is referenced in TDR, I think, and possibly in LoC, when Elayne compares their respective power levels) and the a'dam is just a perverted link. It does provide the same buffering effect - damane never burn out.

And BTW, didn't somebody somewhere (maybe in the Bowl of Wind chapter?) even think that it is impossible to burn out when linked and/or when using an angreal? Linking _is_ basically using (an)other person(s) as an angreal.

Anyway, whether AS know or not (and IMHO they do), Egwene certainly does. And I very much hope that she will use it, because there is no time for traditional approach.
chaplainchris
249. Subbak
bad_platypus@247:

Welle Egwene was in a circle (as a damane) when she was forced, so...
Joanne
250. Joanne
Totally of topic, but I suppose it is allowed since the sideways meter is out of range already…

@ 240 and 247,
This discussion makes me wonder.
Will the large number of new novices the rebels collected take part in Tarmon Gaidon?

Traditionally Aes Sedai are very protective about the novices but Egwene already ‘used’ them in the defence against the Seanchean. And after all, there are many grown women among them who would certainly be capable and a waste not to use (remember Sharina for example).

Thoughts?
Eugenie Delaney
251. EmpressMaude
stromgard@241

mean seriously, you have to consider this from Rands POV. He has FLED from Caemlyn to get away from exactly the very AS he is now facing, since he is afraid of being gentled."

Right, but so? He knows that the Aes Sedai broke over Siuan, whom he had met and allowed him to go on his way. Whom was allied with Moiraine. And the whole Blue Ajah left the Tower. And Elayne, Nynaeve and Egwene associate with.

"Then other AS, which he trusts, bring more AS close to him in secret, shield and capture him, and torture him horribly twice every day, keeping him in a sealed small box in the dark for the rest of the time, for many weeks."

This is actually inaccurate. The Aes Sedai whom shielded him and captured him were Elaida's and he never *trusted* them (although he did scoff at Egwene's warning about them).

Secondly, Rand was not "mistreated" the whole time. His initial imprisonement was in a large paddywagon with a bed and chair and furniture. Only after he saw Min, when bonkers and killed two warders did they put him in the box and torture him. His actual torture lasted two days.

Nonetheless, I still don't see how he can justify forcing the Rebel Aes Sedai to kneel just like the the Tower Aes Sedai since he previously recognized them as two distinct polities.
Chris Chaplain
252. chaplainchris1
Various things about Aes Sedai. Wall o text. Twitching for new reread post. These aren't the droids you're looking for. Proceed.

Wetlander @ 223:
...one could hope that all this lack of respect might help the Aes Seday as a group realize that just because they have superpowers, they are not "better" than everyone else, and should be working hard to measure up to the reputation they thought they deserved....

Well said! I think this is maybe one reason I've always liked the Supergirls regardless of any foibles and faults - Nynaeve, Elayne, and Egwene always work hard to live up what they think Aes Sedai should be. Sometimes their certainty that the TRBoys should treat Aes Sedai with respect bordering on reverence grates; but they do work hard on educating themselves, self-control, etc.

@231 forkroot - it's also why I liked Moria. Not so much for her support of Egwene in this book, but for her actions in KOD. It's clear that she's the driving force/leader behind the manuvering to get an alliance with the Black Tower. Now, in retrospect, it's obvious why DFs would think this is good - Taim et.al. But at the time, Moria's speech "we do be drowning" was such refreshing honesty from an AS - the world's not what it was, we're not in control, in fact we're screwed unless we make drastic changes. Like working with men.

What's more, she politicked very successfully, and while keeping Egwene, Lelaine, Romanda, and all the OB5 in the dark. Finally a non-major AS showing the skill in political manuvering and secret manipulation that AS are reputed to have!

Plus she was a Blue, and I like Blues. Past associations and all.

So with all that, having her be Black is a letdown.

@234 Harai - LOL! It would be great to see AS living up to their image! (I *guess* Siuan lives up to the image - her accomplishments are harder to see than Moiraine's, but solidfying opposition to Elaida, getting Egwene raised, and getting her trained is good stuff.)

Just out of curiousity - for how many people has Verin surpassed Moiraine on the cool-o-meter? I *think* Moiraine is still tops for me - taking out Belal and Lanfear, the latter with foreknowledge of her own danger. But Verin's 70 years of iron-nerved infiltration...wow.

Other AS I like, just because. Some of the first few are definitely sauced with some Awesome, others I just like:

Tarna. She's cold, but in her cold way she actually shows some human kindness to Gawyn, Elayne and Nynaeve, et. al. And she's MOA enough to deal with Elaida, and MOA enough to suggest that Reds bond Ashaman as Warders. Similar to my pre-Black thoughts above, re: Moria.

Pevara. Black Ajah hunter. Loyal to her friend. Implacable foe of DFs. Sees the merit in Tarna's plan and sticks her neck out to get it going. Iron nerve. Able to see more of the big picture than most.

Seaine. Black Ajah hunter. Places law above her personal preferences. Logical, but when embarking on BAHunt, chose to put her trust in a friend - one of a different Ajah, even.

Saerin. Black Ajah hunter. Kept her head during the Seanchan attack. Self-aware enough *not* to want to be Amyrlin, unlike Romanda/Lelaine/Elaida.

Vandene. Takes out the Black who killed her sister with her last bit of life. Way to go, Green.

Teslyn. Shows gratitude toward Mat. I suppose that alone shouldn't qualify her for Awesome-sauce status, but really, in this battle-of-the-sexes world, it kinda does.

Meidani. Egwene's description of her quarters and what it shows about her accomplishments was revealing. She's got maturing to do, as we saw, but there's good material there.

Samitsu. Saves Rand's life. Unlike standard Yellow arrogance, she's desperately driven to learn more of Healing and to Heal those who are hurt. Willing, even eager, to work with men who can channel to achieve this. When she Heals Dobraine, she's anxious for it to work - injured people matter to her.

Merana. I feel a little sorry for how she gets kicked around, but I think her heart's in the right place and she even works to stand up to Cadsuane on Rand's behalf. And she shouts at Rand (taveren, but still!)

Other AS I like, just because, include Masuri and, wait for it, Kiruna. (Just on the strength of Sorilea's observation that Kiruna's begun to work at her 'apprenticeship' - on that alone, I expect her to eventually measure up to AS reputation.)

Not a complete list, by any means. But it's interesting to me that 3 of my favorites are Red - I didn't realize/expect that!
Don Barkauskas
253. bad_platypus
@248,249: Well, that was easier to settle than I expected. Of course, you're both correct.
Valentin M
254. ValMar
Another one goes grey- congratulations Chaplain.
Nice summary on the AS- it's good to remind ourselves from time to time.
Often AS are portrait through the prism of special circumstances which shows them in a worse than usual light. Just because they so often fail to rise to the occasion in this turbulent times many of them are not total zeroes. E.g. besides the above listed- Cabriana vs Semirhage.
R B
255. MasterAlThor
toryx,

Can I chime in on this? Something you said made me think about how I felt about this.

The problem is, when shifts in people's thinking about Aes Sedai change, it doesn't turn to equality but a reversal of the superiority. Whenever a group who can channel ceases to feel awe or fear of Aes Sedai, they don't embrace equality. They begin to think that they're superior and as a result they automatically start to treat Aes Sedai the way they do anyone who is not a member of their group. The Wise Ones, the Windfinders and the Kin all turn their noses down on the Aes Sedai (and everyone else) as less than they.


I don't see the Kin or the WO thinking that they are superior. I see them as seeing themselves as atleast on the same level and only possibly being superior in the case of the WO.

The Kin, IMO, think that the Aes Sedai aren't all that and a bag of chips. They see the results of the bad deal that two children made with the Windfinders. This would make them believe that "hey, I used to think that you walked on air."

Where the Wise Ones come in is. We have believed for generations that you knew everything. Now we find out that you don't know as much as you say.

Both of these schools of thought don't say I am better than you. They do say, it seems your poo does stink just like everyone elses.

Dragonofthewhycan'tIcomeupwithasongforanyoftheSGAiel
Maiane Bakroeva
256. Isilel
Chaplainchris1 @252:

Moiraine is still my favorite AS and favorite character, though I love Verin too. Too bad that there is never going to be a prequel about Verin and her infiltration of the BA.

I also like all the AS you listed ;). Re: Teslyn, she is more MoAish than that - she Healed Egeanin, when it put her at major risk of discovery and she tried to push for offering succor to wounded Seanchan despite her horrific treatment at their hands.

BTW - no Siuan and Leane?

And also, the Namelle sisters where very cool back in TGH, then got hit by an idiot stick along with other AS and were becoming likable again in PoD... But still, I expected more of them, having been the gals to whom Moiraine went for esoteric information.

P.S. Masuri is likely black, though.

MAT @255:

Well, Aiel certainly think that they are better than anybody else and WOs think that they are better than other Aiel, so...

P.S.S: Joanne @250:

I certainly hope that gathering of a huge number of novices wasn't just an idle exercise and they actually participate in TG.
I have to say that one of the things that RJ didn't wholly think through is how in this gender-equal society, a boy becoming a soldier at 15 is no big deal and is immediately counted as an adult, while even a channeling woman in her mid-twenties is subject to questioning and "protection" at every turn.
R B
257. MasterAlThor
And one more thing.

I am not going to bother with the Windfinders. They have thought that they are better than everyone regardless of the actual facts. That's an opinion not cannon.

DragonofthewhereareallmyGabblyAiel
Valentin M
258. ValMar
Oh yes, forgot to answer the question- Moiraine is still my favourite too.
R B
259. MasterAlThor
Isilel,

Some of them do, but I think when it comes to the AS the Aiel come down on the side of the AS don't live up to their expectations.

The Aiel were taught to fear destruction at the hands of AS for generations. When you find out that your supposed destructors don't even know as much as you thought they did, it kinda sucks all the wind out things.

The Wise Ones no longer fear the Aes Sedai. So they show them diffidence. They look at them as if they are not superior to the Wise Ones anymore.

DragonofthetheyleftmeallalonewheredideverybodygoAiel
chaplainchris
260. Subbak
Isilel@256: Actually, since you mention it, Leane is one of the characters I feel deserve a lot more screen time... We don't even know the name of her new Warder(s), IIRC.

But my favorite AS is still by far Verin. She went so far up the Awesome-O-Meter, that even the White Ajah don't have an ordinal for that. Moraine and Cadsuane are fighting for the second place (but to be fair, Moraine hasn't been around for some time, when she gets back she'll probably kick Cadsuane's ass).
Chris Chaplain
261. chaplainchris1
@250 Joanne - the SAS already had plans to draft novices and Accepted into linked Circles in the event of Forsaken attack - which we see when they fight off a bubble of evil. (That's in LOC, right?)

Based on this, I don't see a need to *intentionally* force novices or to rush novices and Accepted into advancement. (Though personally I'd like to see Bode, Nicola, and Sharina as full sisters by the end, but I doubt we will.) They *do* need to train everybody in linking right away, and get them drilled working with a circle, and get the chain-of-command worked out in the circle.

With 1100 novices (Egwene's 1000 plus Elaida's 100), plus however many of the Kin they grab, there ought to be plenty of non-AS to link up with the already trained AS. Iirc there are around 1700 Kin, but only about 150 made it to Caemlyn. The rest are scattered all over the place, and many may have been snatched up by the Seanchan.

By the way - how many AS do we think Egwene has at her command? She started off with about 300, and about that many were under Elaida's command. But Elaida lost close to 100. 50 to the Black Tower, and around 39 or so that were apprenticed to WOs and have sworn to Rand - plus some killed or lost, like Galina. Factor in the BA purge, and Eg could have fewer than 400 AS in Tar Valon. Those bonded to Ashaman or sworn to Rand I don't think she'll get back until after TG. Still, linked up with novices, Accepted, and Kin, she could have hundreds of linked circles of considerable strength. With angreal and sa'angreal reinforcement.

Will the three sisters with Mat link up to Egwene via Elayne in Caemlyn?

Will the 300 "unaligned" sisters (many of them, at least, working with Cadsuane) link up with Egwene?

By the way - if there were approximately 500 women who could channel with the Wise Ones, does that imply that that numbers are approximately equal in the other 11 clans? We could be talking about roughly 6000 WOs who can channel, which even with Egwene's new policy and the Kin, still dwarfs the White Tower.

How many SF Windfinders (channeling variety) are there?

How many damane? And how much strength do we lose by having suldam not contribute their own potential strength, and by the inability of linked damane to form larger circles? Does their facility with weaponized weaves make up for the loss?

Compare all of this with half a dozen Forsaken and maybe 70-100 surviving Black Ajah. And Taim's coterie at the Black Tower, which is still a minority it seems? Somehow it seems to me, in channeling strength, like the Light still has a huge advantage...at least, if the fight were going to be like the Trolloc Wars on a grand scale. What does the Shadow have up its sleeves?

(And will Sharan channelers be involved in the Last Battle? The Ayyad could potentially be huge...)
R B
262. MasterAlThor
chaplinchris,

There is the thought that Demandred will have the Ayyad in the palm of his hand.

So yeah expect them to be involved.

DragonoftheatleastSulinhasjoinedmeAiel
Antoni Ivanov
263. tonka
@251.EmpressMaude
Actually it's on the second day that that Rand killed the two Warders and then he is being tortured 12 days before being rescued (http://www.stevenac.net/wot/tl1000.htm) And everyday he is transported inside a chest. And he is not in paddywagon but in a cage with "sturdy chair, and a small table" and a bed, and that only when they were camping and that lasts for two days, the rest of the journey he is in a box day and night. I thought I'll get your facts straight.
Theresa Gray
264. Terez27
It just occurred to me that I haven't seen a Moiraine-hater in some time. There used to be a prominent one at Theoryland, and since he was prominent, he attracted several more Moiraine-haters, but since that guy left Theoryland, I've seen neither hide nor hair of them. I guess they are just too intimidated by all of the Moiraine-worship to come out of the closet. One could definitely argue that there is more reason to dislike Moiraine than Egwene, but Moiraine's glory moment on the docks changed a lot of people's opinions of her (including Rand's), and of course the hope of rescue has a lot of people bouncing up and down.
Bill Reamy
265. BillinHI
Terez27 @264: Moiraine has her irritating moments (as do all the characters in WoT, with the possible exception of Loial), but for me, she has many more good moments, crowned by the massive MoA at the docks. Her Manetheren speech in Emond's Field always chokes me up and her realization that she needs to "surrender" to Rand to "control" him (as she has to do with saidar) is another MoA moment, if only a mini one.

Edit: Oh yeah, I cannot _wait_ for her rescue. Plenty of MoAs there, I bet.

Re-edit: New post is up! YAY!
Chris Chaplain
266. chaplainchris1
@256 Isilel - I said it wasn't complete! Thanks for the reminder about Teslyn's Healing - totally forgotten that and I totally thought it was awesome.

I've already said a lot in recent days about Siuan. Leane is like Siuan-lite to me - but I do appreciate her willingness to make herself over, making lemon out of her lemonade. Her loyalty and steadfastness in her cell is great - I like the part in KOD where Egwene thinks that Leane is having more impact than she is! And I appreciate that her greater experience meant that, when she went to transform the harbor chain, she knew to mask her ability and prepare & invert her weaves first. (I now think Egwene's biggest mistake wasn't failing to do this, it was failing to have backup ready for rescue. I mean, Leane did everything right and still got caught. There should've been back-up available.)

Subbak @ 260 - has Leane bonded Warders yet?

I still think Masuri is not Black and I'm all but convinced that Annoura is.
Chris Chaplain
267. chaplainchris1
@262 - yes, and I *hope* that thought is right and that Demandred's army is the Sharans and not the Borderlanders, because I like Borderlanders. But I don't take it as proven either way. (And for that matter, it may not be mutually exclusive.)

(And from a narrative standpoint, the Forsaken have to be doing something in the Borderlands - they have everywhere else. And if the Borderlanders meekly fall into line and hop through gateways back home...then what the h*ll have we wasted all this time on them for?!?)
Alice Arneson
268. Wetlandernw
HArai @238 - Yeah, if those are truly the words of the "standard ceremony" it would stink, because its all wrong in its implications. I wonder if we'll ever find out? Note Freelancer's post @239 - at least some Aes Sedai understand the truth of it.

Freelancer @239, speaking of... I always forget that bit. Moiraine tells us right up front that they're only human, but we don't actually see very much of it until later in the series. Or maybe it's just me.

Isilel @240 - Maybe it's just me. :) Anyway, good points on the concerns about other channelers losing respect for the AS. Some of that was vaguely in my mind when I first made the note, but by the time I got to writing the post I couldn't pull much of it together. I'm sure glad you could!

Re: "the attention of the Tower" being a significant deterrent to unethical OP use... It's a little hard to imagine, because our own history has changed so much in the last 3000 years - even in the last 100 years! - that we can't really comprehend how centuries-old taboos could still be in effect. I have to assume that the centuries of relative isolation disturbed by occasional warfare have created a somewhat more static set of convictions in Randland. There obviously (?) would have been a time when AS were more involved in the world, more active in recruitment, more swift to swoop down on any rumor of Power-use. IIRC, a lot of their withdrawal came from the Hawkwing and Hundred-Years-War upheavals. (That may just be a theory proposed by someone, or it might have been mentioned in the books somewhere... I can't recall.) Anyway, the mindset has been deeply ingrained, in each culture's own way, that drawing the anger of the White Tower for (mis)use of the One Power is guaranteed to be A Bad Thing.

DF novices... I guess so far we haven't seen any Kin DFs, but why wouldn't they have been infiltrated too? Seems like every group has a few, so I wouldn't be surprised to find some there.

War plans: Well, we did see them figure out an OP/mundane solution to the Tar Valon siege, after all. The mundane siege couldn't be really effective with the harbors open, so they bolluxed the harbor chains with the OP. It wasn't 100% effective, but it worked pretty well for a first try, and would have been 100% if not for the betrayal from within. (Which, of course, had to happen for other reasons, yada yada.) Now that they're more or less done with the Tower war, we can hope they'll turn to planning TG; you have to admit they (Egwene, Siuan, Bryne) haven't had a lot of time to turn their attention that way until now. I like the idea of using the shawl ter'angreal for training; I'm guessing that might have been much closer to its original purpose.

The end of TGS didn't allow time for Egwene to start implementing measures for TG preparation. She had time for the Amyrlin-raising, rebukes and apologies all around (including herself, folks!!), and starting to figure out who was where. Also, in terms of editing, I'm guessing that whatever was written in that regard was cut from TGS and moved to one of the other books. Putting that in the last chapter or the epilogue would have been wierdly out of place.

ValMar - BTW, women are also "Dreadlords". It's a unisex term.

toryx @245 - Good point. Equality isn't nearly as annoying as the reversal of superiority.
Roger Powell
269. forkroot
chaplainchris1@252
Bravo on the list of "admirable" Aes Sedai. Saerin, in particular, is one of the coolest of the "minor" characters. I loved the way she faced down Katerine (whom I hate with a passion.)

I too like Teslyn. I predict that when Mat's party reaches Camelyn she'll elect to remain affiliated with Mat and the Band!

Of course I'm a Leane lover too, as I've stated in previous posts and Siuan is right up there with Moraine and Verin in the top echelon of Team Light. Here's a few others:

1) Silviana - What she did, standing up and denouncing Elaida before the Hall, took incredible courage. Sure, when we meet her we don't like her because she's paddling Egwene. But to her credit, she comes around to understanding what Egwene is about and does the right thing.

2) Adelorna - OK, this is based more on expectations, but I think she learned a big lesson with Egwene. I fully expect her to be a big-time Captain-General for the female channelers at TG.

3) Anaiya - Of course she's history now - but I always had a soft spot for her.
T C
270. Freelancer
BillinHI

Moiraine's declaration to Egwene that she finally remembers how to control saidar was actually a low point in my opinion of her.

There's no question that she starts out thinking that the plan she and Siuan crafted is the absolute best plan there is. Well, she admits to her own arrogance-induced shortsightedness immediately after the Trolloc raid of Winternight.

It's true that she believed she could loom over the Two Rivers youngsters and make them dance to her tune straight to the Last Battle.

Yes, she intended to "steer" Rand into fulfilling prophecies as she understood them (which was horribly flawed all the way around).

For all of that, her mission objective was the right one. Do what can be done to prepare the Dragon Reborn for the Last Battle.

In the Stone, Rand takes independent action and Moiraine doesn't approve or appreciate it. She tries some psychology to get him to return to following her lead. She tries everything, except realizing that he's a leader, and she a counselor.

Then she remembers how to "control" saidar. She believes that she can steer Rand to her path by surrendering to him in certain aspects. It's a very thoughtful scene, and makes perfect sense, but it shows that at that point Moiraine still hadn't understood something she had previously told to others. This uber-ta'veren is bound to the Pattern more tightly than others, and her trying to push him in any direction other than that will bring trouble and chaos. She should have not merely "surrendered", but submitted to his leadership at that point.

Moiraine most certainly has her share of faults and misconceptions. But she still owns a major bank of awesome points for finding Rand, saving his life numerous times, and doing what was in her power to do, not for herself, but for the Light. Moiraine's actions are human, and therefore imperfect, but she has never once been shown to be selfish.

If I wore a shawl it would be Blue.
T C
272. Freelancer
::blink::

A Northwest drive-by? Did anybody get the number on that Wetlander?
Maiane Bakroeva
273. Isilel
Freelancer @270:

She should have not merely "surrendered", but submitted to his leadership at that point.

Well, she knew after Rhuidean that she had very little time and wanted to use it to educate Rand. She also knew for a fact that actually following Rand's leadership would be disastrous - he would have never allowed her to take on Lanfear.

Nor are all Rand's decisions right, über-ta'veren or not. And various folks have done good work steering him away from possible disasters when he repeatedly wanted to jump into risky situations without backup, for instance.

IMHO, Moiraine's mistake was in rejection of Rand's offer of mutual honesty in TSR and generally in "one step forward, one step back" in her approach to Rand's education _before_ TSR.

Her insistence that it is dangerous to consciously try to _force_ fulfillment of prophecies as Rand has been doing may have been partly wrong... but IMHO after TGS it seems likely that it was also partly right.
Birgit
274. birgit
The problem is, when shifts in people's thinking about Aes Sedai change, it doesn't turn to equality but a reversal of the superiority.

The Dreamwalker WO's opinion of AS changes when they meet the incompetent AS in TAR who won't admit that they don't know how to use TAR.

I guess so far we haven't seen any Kin DFs, but why wouldn't they have been infiltrated too? Seems like every group has a few, so I wouldn't be surprised to find some there.

The reason people believe there are no Black Kin is that the BA should know more about the Kin if there were Darkfriends among them.
chaplainchris
275. sushisushi
Am coming back in late here, but anyhoo…

Wetlandernw @167 Thank you, I’m glad to have been able to contribute something to the discussion – I’ve been reading through the posts, but only caught up recently and I do have a very soft spot for Aes Sedai internal politics. I’m fascinated that RJ managed to create an organization of such weight, historical depth and complexity - it’s amazing how many resonances there are to academic politics, which I’m sure are totally intentional!

Good point about Siuan-the-puzzle-master – I reckon she was looking for examples of behaviour and action-reaction that she could model the Aes Sedai response to TG off. Pity about the total secrecy and complete unpreparedness of almost everyone else, and the fact that the vast majority seem to have forgotten about those of Gitara’s Foretellings that were fairly common knowledge among the AS in NS. That is a really interesting avenue of speculation, though – which other AS were aware that TG was going to happen in the next three hundred years (at a conservative estimate) and were doing something about it? We know about this because in New Spring, one of the Accepted overheard Adelorna telling this to Shemaen (who we never see again), so you would think that the Green Ajah would have been all over it, really, particularly as there’s a chance that Adelorna was already the Captain-General. I wonder does this have anything to do with the Green’s odd alliance with the Red in TGH?

Isilel @137 I suspect that Siuan had done a lot of research on how to use the War powers for TG, which may or may not be applicable to using it to force a broken Tower back together. Good catch on Elaida thinking that she must really do some reading in the secret histories some time soon. Famous last words…

AndrewB @170 I’m far from an Egwene hater, but I do think that she owes a lot to Siuan and Siuan’s teaching, particularly before she’s in any sort of position to assert her independence. I think Siuan rather did think she was a puppet (her puppet) for quite a while longer, as she doesn’t do the ‘you *are* the Amyrlin’ speech until well into TGS (I think it’s CH38: News in Tel'aran'rhiod).

Looking Glass @205 I’m not sure, but it would make a twisted kind of sense. On the Whitecloaks view of the Aes Sedai riding for the Shadow, someone does say in TGS that they are willing to ally with AS for the Last Battle, but I think that’s after the institution of Galad’s New More Caring Whitecloak Regime.

chaplainchris1 @261 Great work on figuring all that out - it really does put things in perspective (maybe someone should send Rand this memo?) A small nit on the Wise Ones, though - most of the Shaido WOs have been made damane, so you would need to adjust the numbers accordingly.

My main Aes Sedai of Awesomeness will always be Verin, first last and always.
Theresa Gray
276. Terez27
@freelancer - one of my favorite things about WoT is chapter names. Sometimes, there are some fairly generic ones that are used more than once. 'Choices' is an example of this. The most noteworthy use of 'Choices' was the chapter in TFOH where Moiraine takes out Lanfear. In TEOTW, there is a nice parallel (note, of course, the chapter name):

TITLE - The Eye of the World
CHAPTER: 13 - Choices

"We're going to Baerlon," Rand said sleepily, but Mat snorted.

"Baerlon's all very well, but I've seen that old map Master al'Vere has. If we turn south once we reach Caemlyn, the road leads all the way to Illian, and beyond."

"What's so special about Illian?" Perrin said, yawning.

"For one thing," Mat replied, "Illian isn't full of Aes Se —"

A silence fell, and Rand was suddenly wide awake. Moiraine had come back early. Egwene was with her, but it was the Aes Sedai, standing at the edge of the firelight, who held their attention. Mat lay there on his back, his mouth still open, staring at her. Moiraine's eyes caught the light like dark, polished stones. Abruptly Rand wondered how long she had been standing there.

"The lads were just – " Thom began, but Moiraine spoke right over the top of him.

"A few days respite, and you are ready to give up." Her calm, level voice contrasted sharply with her eyes. "A day or two of quiet, and already you have forgotten Winternight."

"We haven't forgotten," Perrin said. "It's just – " Still not raising her voice, the Aes Sedai treated him as she had the gleeman.

"Is that the way you all feel? You are all eager to run off to Illian and forget about Trollocs, and Halfmen, and Draghkar?" She ran her eyes over them – that stony glint playing against the everyday tone of voice made Rand uneasy – but she gave no one a chance to speak. "The Dark One is after you three, one or all, and if I let you go running off wherever you want to so, he will take you. Whatever the Dark One wants, I oppose, so hear this and know it true. Before I let the Dark One have you, I will destroy you myself."

...

"And you, Rand?" Moiraine said. "What do you think of your first sight of Baerlon?"

"I think it's a long way from home," he said slowly, bringing a sharp laugh from Mat.

"You have further to go yet," Moiraine said. "Much further. But there is no other choice, except to run and hide and run again for the rest of your lives. And short lives they would be. You must remember that, when the journey becomes hard. You have no choice."

Rand exchanged glances with Mat and Perrin. By their faces, they were thinking the same thing he was. How could she talk as if they had any choice after what she had said? The Aes Sedai's made our choices.


Good stuff. In 'Fading Words', Moiraine's letter reveals what she saw in Rhuidean of Rand's choices, and none of them involved killing Lanfear. And of course, Moiraine probably never considered allowing events to go any other way than how they did. I still wonder if there is some foreshadowing here of Moiraine playing the role that everyone assumes Alivia will play. But I love that here, Rand assumes that Moiraine makes his choices, when it's actually the Pattern that makes those choices, not only for his life, but for Moiraine's as well.
Eugenie Delaney
277. EmpressMaude
tonka@263

"Actually it's on the second day that that Rand killed the two Warders and then he is being tortured 12 days before being rescued (http://www.stevenac.net/wot/tl1000.htm)
and that only when they were camping and that lasts for two days, the rest of the journey he is in a box day and night. I thought I'll get your facts straight.
"

Well, I applaud your efforts, but I dispute Stephen Cooper's timeline.


Anyway, thanks for the detailed response.
Theresa Gray
278. Terez27
EmpressMaude@263 - You dispute the timeline with what? The books agree with it. Erian herself only punished Rand for two days, but Galina insisted that his punishments continue whether or not Erian wanted to do it. He was kept in the box from the time he killed her Warders until he was freed, and most of his punishment seems to have been delivered by Galina and Katerine, besides the two days that Erian took out her grief on him.

Subscribe to this thread

Receive notification by email when a new comment is added. You must be a registered user to subscribe to threads.
Post a comment