Jul 30 2010 2:41pm

The Wheel of Time Re-read: Winter’s Heart, Part 6

A man may die, nations may rise and fall, but the Wheel of Time Re-read lives on! Yay!

Today’s entry covers Chapters 7 and 8 of Winter’s Heart, in which we ask not what your damane can do for you, but what you can do for your damane! Or something like that!

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 7: The Streets of Caemlyn

What Happens
Elayne rides slowly through the overcrowded city, conspicuously wearing the Daughter-Heir’s coronet. She wishes those cheering her were more numerous, but prefers the silence to outright jeering. She thinks that while the saying “Who holds Caemlyn holds Andor” is not quite true (as Rand proved), she will never be queen unless she can win over the city. She is accompanied by Sareitha and her Warder Ned Yarman, and eight of the newly-recreated Queen’s Guard, all women, which is drawing a lot of attention from the crowd. Sareitha opines that it is not safe for Elayne out here, reminding her of the ten sisters of unknown affiliation currently occupying an inn nearby. Elayne replies calmly that they are not necessarily Elaida’s; to herself, she thinks it more likely they are among those standing aside until the schism in the Tower is resolved, though she is having them watched anyway. She doesn’t understand why Elaida wants her, Elayne, so badly, but it’s a significant concern now that Elayne has declared her presence to the world. Sareitha further points out that Elaida is not the only one who wants her, and Elayne concedes mentally that kidnapping claimants to the throne is almost par for the course, but counters that that is why Sareitha is here too.

“If I don’t dare leave the Palace, Sareitha, I will never get the people behind me,” she said quietly. “I must be seen, out and about and unafraid.” That was why she had eight Guards instead of the fifty Birgitte had wanted. The woman refused to grasp the realities of politics.

She also wants to see the state of affairs in the city for herself; the large numbers of refugees are both burden and benefit to Caemlyn. Her musing is interrupted when she senses a furious Birgitte coming toward her quickly, and swiftly heads to meet her. Birgitte gallops up to tell her that news has come from Aringill: the men escorting Naean and Elenia out of the town were ambushed and murdered. Elayne replies, so they have a spy in the Palace, and then wishes she hadn’t said so in front of Sareitha. Both Sareitha and Birgitte agree, and immediately use this to argue for a bodyguard for Elayne within the Palace, which Elayne rejects angrily. She goes on bitterly that she should have overseen moving Naean and Elenia herself, or least sent the whole garrison at Aringill, but Birgitte snaps back that a queen isn’t supposed to run her own errands, any more than she is supposed to go wandering around the city at night in disguise and maybe get her skull cracked open by toughs. Elayne sits up, indignant, thinking she had only done that once, but Sareitha jumps in with details that make it clear she was following Elayne and Aviendha that night and knew exactly how close their call was. Birgitte doesn’t think sending the whole garrison would have helped either, and probably only would have ensured Aringill’s fall to boot. Sareitha asks who took them, and Elayne replies they’ll know soon enough.

“It is very simple, Sareitha,” she said in a carefully controlled voice. “If Jarid Sarand took them, Elenia will give Naean a choice. Declare Arawn for Elenia, with some sweetening of estates for Naean in return, or else have her throat slit in a quiet cell somewhere and her corpse buried behind a barn. Naean won’t give in easily, but her House is arguing over who is in charge until she returns, so they’ll dither, Elenia will threaten torture and maybe use it, and eventually Arawn will stand behind Sarand for Elenia. Soon to be joined by Anshar and Baryn; they will go where they see strength. If Naean’s people have them, she will offer the same choices to Elenia, but Jarid will go on a rampage against Arawn unless Elenia tells him not to, and she won’t if she thinks he has any hope of rescuing her. So we must hope to hear in the next few weeks that Arawn estates are being burned.” If not, she thought, I have four houses united to face, and I still don’t know whether I really have even two!

“That is… very nicely reasoned out,” Sareitha said, sounding faintly surprised.

“I’m sure you could have, too, with time,” Elayne said, too sweetly, and felt a stab of pleasure when the other sister blinked. Light, her mother would have expected her to see that much when she was ten!

They return to the Palace, meeting Careane and one of her Warders (Venr Kosaan) on their way out, and Elayne tries not to be overly paranoid in wondering which of the many servants might be the traitor in their midst. Sareitha and Yarman peel off for the library, and Birgitte immediately lights into Elayne for her stunt of sneaking out with Aviendha (and without Birgitte); Elayne deflects her diatribe by chastising her for language.

“My… language,” Birgitte murmured dangerously. Even her strides changed, to something like a pacing leopard. “You talk about my language? At least I always know what the words I use mean. At least I know what fits where, and what doesn’t.” Elayne colored, and her neck stiffened. She did know! Most of the time. Often enough, at least.

Birgitte tells her that Yarman may still be “goggle-eyed” over being a Warder, but Birgitte never was, and doesn’t jump for Elayne. She accuses Elayne again of ennobling her to “rein her in,” and storms off; Elayne stomps her foot and thinks she meant it as a reward, mostly, and also that Birgitte Silverbow had a lot of nerve accusing Elayne of taking unnecessary risks. She likes Birgitte as she is, but wishes their relationship were more Warder to Aes Sedai and less “knowing older sister to scampish younger.” She shakes herself and sends for Reene Harfor.

I think I’ll call this the “convertible in Dallas” chapter. Sheesh.

Though I do get Elayne’s frustration about being hemmed in by bodyguards 24-7. After a year or so of getting to traipse all over the land practically by herself and have adventures and stuff, having to go back to everybody being all up in her Kool-Aid and treating her like spun glass would be unquestionably very galling. But that doesn’t mean she has to be stupid about it, does it?

Speaking of which, the new (and improved, heh) Secret Service Queen’s Guard is something I quite enjoyed when it was introduced. Mostly, of course, because I was pleased that Elayne was taking a cue from the Aiel (Aviendha, in other words) and creating a place for women to be in military service, which, finally, Randland, but also because their style of uniform (which I think gets described more fully later on) is a straight-up riff on the 17th century French musketeers’ uniforms—made famous, naturally, by Dumas’ The Three Musketeers.

Which is awesome. I’m not sure why, but it is. Something about those uniforms always just frickin’ kills me. It’s a thing, I have no idea.

(At the 2009 JordanCon, my absolute favorite costume there was this one girl who dressed as a Queen’s Guard, with the sash and plumed hat and everything. It was kickass.)

This almost certainly isn’t the first time it’s mentioned, but Elayne’s musings on the “unaffiliated” sisters in Caemlyn is probably the first time I really made the connection that up to a third of all the Aes Sedai out there had not actually chosen a side in the schism, but were instead just kind of hanging out and waiting to see who won before coming back. I really can’t decide if I think this is sharp political savvy or rather contemptible cowardice. Of course, it’s not like those two things are automatically mutually exclusive.

Complicated politics are complicated: I quoted that entire paragraph about who re-kidnapped Naean and Elenia for the sole reason that the idea of trying to summarize it made my eyes cross. Basically I’m like, sure, whatever you say, Elayne. This is one of many reasons why me deciding not to go for public office is a good thing.

Though at least I wouldn’t be subject to a government where abduction is standard procedure, because sheesh. That’s kind of hilarious and awful at the same time.

Birgitte: Her dig at Elayne for not knowing what her own curse words mean was funny (and accurate), but this is about where I kind of stopped liking Birgitte. I mean, I get that she’s under a ton of stress, and is additionally freaking out because she’s convinced Elayne jinxed her or something by putting her in actual charge of things, and that’s all understandable, but that doesn’t change the fact that it means awesome laidback Birgitte who hung out with (and stuck up for) Mat in Ebou Dar is now replaced by tense snappy Birgitte who takes her frustrations out on everyone around her, and all the sympathy in the world isn’t going to change how much not fun that is to be around.

It’s a damn shame, too. I really hope she gets re-awesomed before the end of the show. Come back, awesome Birgitte!

Chapter 8: Sea Folk and Kin

What Happens
Elayne meets up with Reene Harfor in the halls, where Reene tells her that she may have uncovered a pair of spies, but they fled before she could catch them. Elayne tells her that there may be more, and not just from Naean or Elenia. Reene says she will go on looking, and gives Elayne a rundown of her schedule with rather firm “suggestions” of how to handle various issues, including the news that most of their flour is full of weevils and moths, and the hams are spoiling, which Elayne thinks very odd, considering it is winter. As they walk, she catches sight of Solain Morgeillin and Keraille Surtovni hurrying along with a woman squeezed between them.

Flashes of silver showed at the neck of the sullen woman squeezed between them, though the Kinswomen had draped a long green scarf around her to hide the a’dam’s leash. That would cause talk, and it would be seen sooner or later. Better if she and the others did not have to be moved, but there was no way to avoid it. […] How did Rand always manage to do the wrong thing? Being male just was not excuse enough.

Reene carefully ignores all this and finishes by telling Elayne that Mistress Corly has asked to see her, saying she has good news “of a sort.” Elayne decides she could use even sort of good news, and heads off to see Reanne. She runs into Vandene in the corridor. Vandene has Zarya and Kirstian with her, both demure and meek in white. Elayne thinks their treatment is too harsh, but had been surprised to find that most of the Kin disagreed. Vandene momentarily stumbles over calling them “children” (which Elayne does not find surprising, considering that Kirstian is older than Vandene herself), but firms up and informs Elayne that these children have come up with a theory about the murders in Hanlon Bridge, and concluded that the killer must be either Merilille, Sareitha or Careane. Vandene is not happy that they were thinking about this at all, much less what they had concluded, even though she and Elayne had concluded from the start that the murderer must be Aes Sedai.

[Adeleas and Ispan] had been paralyzed with crimsonthorn before they were killed, and it was all but impossible that the Windfinders knew of an herb only found far from the sea. And even Vandene was sure the Kin numbered no Darkfriends among them.  

They base their reasoning for the latter on the fact that Ispan knew no more about the Kin than any other Aes Sedai, and if there were any Darkfriends among the Kin, the Black Ajah would have known all about them. Which means that one of the sisters with them was also Black, something Elayne et al are very anxious to keep quiet. Vandene opines that someone has to take Zarya and Kirstian in hand to keep them busy, which means Elayne or Nynaeve. Elayne replies that she hardly has a moment to herself as it is, so it will have to be Nynaeve. Nynaeve herself appears and joins them, asking cheerfully what they’re talking about.

The small red dot, the ki’sain, in the middle of her forehead did look quite strange. According to Malkieri custom, a red ki’sain marked a married woman, and she had insisted on wearing it as soon as she learned. Toying idly with the end of her braid, she looked… content… not an emotion anyone usually associated with Nynaeve al’Meara.

Elayne jumps when she realizes Lan is there too, and shivers at the look in his eyes. Nynaeve’s good mood vanishes when they explain, and she tells them that maybe Elayne can “loll around playing politics,” but Nynaeve has her hands full with the Kin. She’s particularly incensed that many of them now try to argue with her, but Elayne thinks Nynaeve brought that on herself.

“And those cursed Sea Folk! Wretched women! Wretched; wretched; wretched! If it wasn’t for that bloody bargain…! The last thing I need on my hands is a couple of whining, bleating novices!”

This doesn’t please Zarya and Kirstian, but Elayne is not inclined to be the peacemaker for once, since she’d like to slap both them and Nynaeve. She retorts to Nynaeve that she is not playing at anything, and points out to Nynaeve that left to their own devices Zarya and Kirstian will be running off to play detective in a second. Nynaeve, however, replies that maybe they should let them, and forthwith assigns them to Vandene. Vandene is not happy about this at all, but Nynaeve counters that maybe this will give Vandene time to sleep and eat, which she hasn’t been doing. She makes it an order, and Vandene is obligated to yield. As revenge, Vandene remarks that Sereille Bagand had once told her Vandene was too hard on her students, and Zarya and Kirstian go pale.

As Mistress of Novices and later Amyrlin Seat, Sereille was a legend. The sort of legend that made you wake in the middle of the night sweating. “I do eat,” Vandene said to Nynaeve. “But everything tastes like ashes.” With a curt gesture at the two novices, she led them away past Lan.

Nynaeve mutters about Vandene being stubborn, and Elayne wisely ignores this to ask if she knows what Reanne’s news is. Nynaeve replies she’s been in her rooms all morning, and frowns at Lan for some reason.

Nynaeve claimed her marriage was glorious—she could be shockingly frank about it with other women—but Elayne thought she must be lying to cover up disappointment. Very likely Lan was ready for an attack, ready to fight, even when asleep. It would be like lying down beside a hungry lion. Besides, that stone face was enough to chill any marriage bed. Luckily, Nynaeve had no idea what she thought. The woman actually smiled. An amused smile, oddly. Amused, and… could it be condescending? Of course not. Imagination.

They head off to find Reanne, Lan scaring servants as they go, and Elayne fills Nynaeve in on the events of the morning, declining to respond to Nynaeve’s obvious advice regarding spies. Nynaeve tells her they’ve sent eighteen of the Kin via gateways into Seanchan-controlled territory, mostly to try and smuggle out any Kinswomen who didn’t make it out before the invasion, but also because those eighteen would likely have run off if not given something to do. Nynaeve sighs that she can’t see how Egwene’s plan is going to work when most Kin will never earn the shawl, and she doesn’t see them consenting to be novices for the rest of their lives either. They find Reanne with Alise and one of the captured sul’dam, Marli. Nynaeve asks if this one’s “seen reason”; Alise replies that they still deny they can channel (and thinks they can’t really, they are more poised on the brink of it), but at least they have stopped trying to attack people. Reanne adds that they deny seeing the flows, too, claiming it’s a trick, but that sooner or later they will run out of lies to tell themselves.

Elayne sighed. What a gift Rand had sent her. A gift! Twenty-nine Seanchan sul’dam neatly held by a’dam, and five damane—she hated that word; it meant Leashed One, or simply Leashed; but that was what they were—five damane who could not be uncollared for the simple reason that they would try to free the Seanchan women who had held them prisoner. Leopards tied with string would have been a better gift. At least leopards could not channel.

She had decided to have the Kin convince the sul’dam that they could channel, and then send them back to the Seanchan, where their secret was bound to come out sooner or later and shake the Seanchan badly, perhaps even tear them apart, but so far it hadn’t been going well. She asks for the good news, if it isn’t Marli, and Reanne binds Marli to her chair with saidar before replying that three of the damane may be ready to be released from their collars. Elayne and Nynaeve are both surprised, especially since only two of the five captured damane are from this side of the ocean. Reanne continues with distaste that two of the three Seanchan-born damane (Marille and Jillari) still say they must be collared, but Alivia no longer agrees, or so she says.

[Reanne] shook her head slowly in doubt. “She was collared at thirteen or fourteen, Elayne, she’s not certain which, and she’s been damane for four hundred years! And aside from that, she is… she’s… Alivia is considerably stronger than Nynaeve,” she finished in a rush. Age, the Kin might discuss openly, but they had all the Aes Sedai reticence about speaking of strength in the Power. “Do we dare let her free? A Seanchan wilder who could tear the entire Palace apart?”

Nynaeve stares at Reanne, and Elayne keeps quiet; this is an Aes Sedai matter, and therefore Nynaeve’s decision. Lan suddenly speaks up, and tells Nynaeve that if she doesn’t then she might as well give her back to the Seanchan; collaring someone who wants to be free is no better than what they do. Alise tells him to be quiet, but Nynaeve says he is right. She remarks that at least they don’t have to worry about the other two, but Reanne isn’t so sure, pointing out that Kara (from Falme) is very fond of the sul’dam, and Lemore (from Tanchico) still answers to her damane name as easily as her real one; she doesn’t know if either of them would stand up to a sul’dam who ordered her to help them escape. Nynaeve struggles with herself, gripping her braid, and finally declares that the women will have to be watched closely, but nevertheless the a’dam will come off. Elayne smiles in approval.

Reanne merely nodded acceptance—after a moment—but a smiling Alise came around the table to pat Nynaeve’s shoulder, and Nynaeve actually blushed. She tried to hide it behind clearing her throat roughly and grimacing at the Seanchan woman in her cage of saidar, but her efforts were not very effectual, and Lan spoiled them in any case.

Tai’shar Manetheren,” he said softly.

Nynaeve’s mouth fell open, then curled into a tremulous smile. Sudden tears glistened in her eyes as she spun to face him, her face joyous. He smiled back at her, and there was nothing cold in his eyes.

Elayne struggled not to gape. Light! Maybe he did not chill their marriage bed after all. The thought made her cheeks warm.

She notes that Marli is crying while staring straight at the weaves binding her, but Reanne says they always do that, and then convince themselves it was a trick later. She says it will take time to convince “the Mistress of the Hounds that she is really a hound herself.” She remarks her news wasn’t so good, was it, and Elayne agrees, hoping for some real good news soon.

Now there’s a chapter name to strike fear into the heart. At least the Windfinders aren’t actually in this chapter.

While I can certainly sympathize with Elayne’s lack of appreciation for having yet another thing to worry about on top of all the other crap she’s already got on her plate, I don’t think she’s being quite fair to Rand re: his “gift.” Of course, this is partially Taim’s fault for bitchily phrasing it that way in the first place, which certainly wasn’t Rand’s idea, but still. However, she is keeping her grousing to herself, so you know, it’s fine.

I was actually very surprised that Rand decided to send his POWs from the Seanchan campaign to Elayne, but on reflection she really was the only logical choice. He had to send them to someone who could handle them (i.e. someone who could channel, or to be more accurate, someone with a group of people who could channel), but of the groups he has available, the Wise Ones have their hands full with the Aes Sedai prisoners, he can’t send them to Egwene for reasons that should be obvious, and he doesn’t trust either Taim or Cadsuane, period. That basically leaves Elayne and Nynaeve. So, sucks to be them, I guess.

Also, enter: Alivia. Dun!

I have to say I was very taken aback by Reanne’s revelation that Alivia was stronger than Nynaeve, which at a guess puts her somewhere at Mesaana or Graendal’s level of strength. (I have absolutely no basis for this ranking other than my own opinion, but in my head, the rough progression of female Forsaken from weakest to strongest in the Power has always been: Moghedien, Mesaana, Graendal, Semirhage, and Lanfear (pre-Cyndane-ing). Well, actually I think this is based more on a judgment of their personalities than anything else; whether this makes it more or less likely to be accurate, I leave as an exercise for the reader.)

Woo, tangent. To veer back on topic, I was rather highly annoyed that my girl Nynaeve was suddenly (and randomly, to my mind) no longer Most Badass Female Channeler (for the Light, anyway). In fact I kind of still am, since Alivia has continued to seem random and square-peg-in-round-hole-y to me ever since. Presumably this will no longer be the case once she finally fulfills Min’s prophecy about helping Rand die? I hope so, because she’s otherwise been nothing but a vague irritant to me ever since she was introduced.

Speaking of Nynaeve and strength issues, I found Elayne’s thoughts on that intriguing, since to my recollection this is the first time Elayne has thought of herself as subordinate to Nynaeve under the traditional Aes Sedai ranking rules. Not to continue with the JFK references, but I have to say this made me think of the paranoia when Kennedy was elected over the fact that he was Catholic, which made (stupid) people believe that the Pope would basically get to run the country through him.

This was a thoroughly idiotic chain of reasoning for JFK, but it occurs to me that it could be quite a bit more of a legitimate argument for Elayne, who as an “ordained” Aes Sedai, so to speak, has a much stronger obligation to obey the Amyrlin than a Catholic layperson does to obey the Pope. I can definitely see the potential for a possibly severe conflict of interest at some point.

Zarya and Kirstian: Sound like they should be a Russian pop duo, and man did I get tired of typing their names this post. Otherwise, whatever; this mystery’s been solved and I see no point in dwelling on it.

Well, except to observe that Vandene and Elayne’s “logic” for why it has to be one of the Aes Sedai who dunnit is rather appallingly flawed, no matter how right they turned out to be. The reasoning on the Windfinders is solid, but assuming that because Ispan knew nothing of the Kin means that none of the Black Ajah knows about them is a major logic fail. Even without knowing, as the reader does, of the extreme need-to-know-only structure of the Black Ajah, it’s still a giant honking assumption to make.

And you know what they say: when you make an assumption, you make an “ass” out of “u” and “mption”. (*waves to Lara*)

Lan: Is awesome. Again. Some more. I heart him. That is all.

And I is done with ye! Have a doughnut, and enjoy your weekend!

Bonnie Andrews
2. misfortuona
A new post, and a Gabbly Party. Could this day get better?

Mis-I don't think so.
3. Mehndeke
There is a certain pleasure in reading these each time they're posted, and I won't be denied it!
Brandon D
4. Ishmayl
Good stuff, and finally done with Perrin, though I'm not really looking forward to getting into the Andoran succession thing either. Thanks Leigh!
Rob Munnelly
5. RobMRobM


Mesaana as being stronger than Moggy? I always pegged her as wimpiest out of the Chosen.

Re Lan - tres funny when Elayne realizes that Nyn hearts him too, and likely quite often.

Re Birgitte - your (accurate) observation is an early signal of why the Succession plotline is such a Fail for most folk. It's actually very interesting and not that lengthy (if spread out over several books) but everyone involved in it is aggravating and on edge, even the ones we like. The same principle also applies to the PLOD as well (and, gulp, most of books 6-10).

And who is this Lara who merits a wave? I always credit the "assume" joke to an Odd Couple episode where Felix is arrested for scalping theater tix, but perhaps I'm dating myself.

Nice job as always.

Chin Bawambi
6. bawambi
I didn't mind this section as it made emo Perrin go away for awhile...

John Mann
7. jcmnyu
I've always thought of Alivia's role in the story as Rand's personal bodyguard. However, I couldn't trace her movements over the next 4 books from memory, so maybe that's just the impression I got from her performance at the Cleansing. I also was peeved at Nynaeve's decline in the bad ass rankings. But, it does make some sense. If the Aes Sedai don't reproduce and the Windfinders do, genetically, you would expect better Channelers. Same with what we know of Shara. Is it ever mentioned if there are damane offspring? I know Tuon comments to Mat later in this book that it would be "perverted" to go into the kennels and do your thing, so I doubt it would be allowed. If I had to guess, a Windfinder would be the best of the Light. However, according to the list compiled on 13th Depository, Alivia is ranked second behind Lanfear and tied with Cyndane. Graendal and Sharinna are next followed by Semirhage, Nynaeve and Talaan. So, my theory has not been proven out.

The logic fail about the killer was epic and legendary. I can't believe RJ even tried to explain it if that is all he could come up with.
James Jones
8. jamesedjones
Birgitte is definitely still her MOA self. This is the same persona she assumed for Nyneave when Nyneave tried to treat her like an invalid. She's got no "subtle" setting. If she's irritated with you because you've been a stupidhead, which was acknowledged by Elayne's POV, then she will treat you like a stupidhead.

I still find that I really like her scenes.
Sydo Zandstra
9. Fiddler

Lara is somebody who used to post in the old newsgroup discussions. :)
10. junior1234
"… could it be condescending?"

Heh, yes Elayne it could very possibly be condescending.

Jordan's attempt at describing Nynaeve's wedded bliss are generally pretty terrible, but that line is funny. I'v always like the way that, even though they are friends and peers, Jordan can often make you feel the differences in the supergirl's ages, even though it is relatively small.
a a-p
11. lostinshadow
I feel sorry for Birgitte in this storyline because she is so clearly out of her comfort zone.

I always looked at the descriptions of Nynaeve's wedded bliss as intentional comic relief on RJ's part.
Richard Boye
12. sarcastro
I wonder if Elayne was aware of her mother's habit of walking among the people incognita and that served as her inspiration for her little excursion?

I mean, it's carelessly foolhardy enough for it be in character for her, being Elayne "I will barge into unknown danger" Trakand, but I wonder if she tried because her mother used to do the same thing.

Also, random sidenote: this sequence includes the lexicological debut of the word 'princess' - the first time in the whole damned saga. I also thought it was cool that the Daughter-Heir has a simplified version of the Rose Crown.

Hey - where is the actual Rose Crown, anwyay?

I revile Alivia and I share Leight's enbummerment that all sorts of random women popped up that exceed Nynaeve's strength - Alivia, Sharina, Talaan, Someryn, etc...

I initially thought that Alivia would end up with Egwene (I thought all of the Seanchan channelers would, due to Perrin's wolfdream of Egwene and a party of women bowing to Rand, and some of those women were Seanchan) and since she had hundreds years in learning her repertoire of weapon-based weaves, she serve to help get all the channeling gals on Team Light up to speed in fighting with the One Power.

You know how all the comments are made about the Black Tower is rushing people through and turning them into weapons, but yet the White Tower takes forever? Well, I also remembered Birgitte's comment about how the White Tower accelerated the training during the Trolloc Wars... rub those two thoughts together and I thought that Alivia (living Saidar Weapon and her centuries of knowledge) plus the Kinswomen (the Aes Sedai reserve force of mostly/partially trained channelers) would serve the narrative purpose of filling out the depleted Aes Sedai as an army of female channeling warriors.

But sadly, no. No idea what Alivia's purpose is.

Also, nice example of the Law of Conservation of Characters here - damane Lemore is probably Lady Lielwin, the Tarabonner noble who Egeanin sent off to her doom.

Also, I just dig Reene Harfor. When I am King, she can run my palace staff and my secret police any time.
13. Mehndeke
Never forget, Brigitte will be getting another MoA when she goes to rescue Elayne after the kidnapping. Sure, it's not for a long, long, long, long, long...(whoops sorry, got lost there) time, but it happens.
Sam Mickel
14. Samadai
I just got confirmation that Jordancon 3 is going to be April 15-17 2011 at the Crown Plaza Ravinia. They are taking reservations now(got mine). Tell them you are calling about Jordancon to get the group rate. 1-888-233-9527
Lucas Vollmer
15. aspeo
I agree with you about the politics stuff Leigh! It can get very confusing and hard to sum up, but for some reason I still enjoy reading this plotline. I've always found it interesting, even though I have to re-read parts a couple times.

I really like reading the passage where Lan says: "Taishar Manetheran". It just makes me get a big grin on my face when Nynaeve and Lan look at each other smiling. It's just such a cute scene. Maybe it's because I've only been married for a short time myself, but I definitely got the newlywed vibe with them.

I still think that having Alivia be stronger than Nynaeve doesn't make a lot of sense, but maybe it will play out to be important in the end of the series. I hope so, anyways.

Damane may not have children, but I'd be willing to bet that Sul'dam do. The gene for channeling would still be passed on this way then.

Also, nice example of the Law of Conservation of Characters here - damane Lemore is probably Lady Lielwin, the Tarabonner noble who Egeanin sent off to her doom.

I've never noticed that, I suppose it seems possible to me.
John Mann
16. jcmnyu
aspeo @ 15

Good point about sul'dam procreating. However, since sul'dam are ones who can learn and damane are sparkers and sparkers are usually the ones who have greater potential, I think the Seanchan would be limiting the potential high power channelers of their population just like the Aes Sedai are. But, since they catch everyone with the spark, there should be more of them in Seanchan than the Westlands since 3 in 4 die without training.
17. BenM
I totally agree with everyone about the EPIC FAIL in logic. I've never gotten that. It's such a huge assumption. Heck, whether any of the BA whatsoever know about them or not, there still could be darkfriends running around in the Kin, who, by the way, for all we know could wind up freeing the BA in the next book. There are DFs in pretty much every other group on the planet. There's no reason to believe the Kin would be any different.

Such stupid non-logic. Where's the White Ajah when you need them? lol

(Hmm, I still wonder if there are any DF Ogier? And what the hecks the deal with those people who supposedly have their heads in their bellies?)
Alice Arneson
18. Wetlandernw
Politics and politics - and they're both right. Elayne needs to be seen, out and about and unafraid. Elayne also needs to be protected, or a single arrow could shut out House Trakand competely. *sigh* Have I ever mentioned, I hate politics?

Glad you quoted the whole bit on Elayne's summary of the situation. Especially the last line, about her mother expecting her to see that much when she was ten. It's funny, because when it comes to Andoran politics Elayne knows what she's about, but sometimes she doesn't realize that what she knows there isn't 100% applicable elsewhere. Also loved Birgitte's "At least I always know what the words I use mean. At least I know what fits where, and what doesn't." Not sure which was funnier - that, or Elayne's "She did know! Most of the time. Often enough, at least." Loved that exchange. But... I think you're right; this is where Birgitte started to become more complainy and less cool-competent. Never thought about that before, but I think its true.

LOL: How did Rand always manage to do the wrong thing? Being male just was not excuse enough. That was so funny. Rand had to do something with the damane and sul'dam, and the best thing he could think of was to send them to Elayne... who really, really didn't need any more complications. It's really too bad he couldn't have sent them to Egwene - she'd at least have had more resources to draw on to deal with them! But then, Alivia has to be someplace where she can be hooked up with Rand, Min & co., so...

Okay, I'm not going to talk about Lan & Nynaeve other than to say that this bit cracks me up - especially Elayne's thoughts, which are so clueless... Oh, and
Tai’shar Manetheren,” he said softly.
chokes me up every time, along with Nynaeve's reaction. Awww...

Why, oh why, can they only think in terms of the existing Tower structure when they think of "all channelers being connected to the Tower" - of course the Kin aren't going to go sit in the Tower and be novices for hundreds of years. To say nothing of the Windfinders and Wise Ones. Or whatever the Seanchan system evolves into eventually. Time to think outside the box, girls...

Okay, Alivia... I suppose it wasn't "realistic" to think that Nynaeve could remain the strongest, but I too was knocked sideways the first time around by Alivia being stronger, and it's kind of a niggling disappoint that sticks with me. *sigh* Also the fact that we never really get much personality with her; I can't get into her head, so I really don't know what to do with her. Maybe the reread and discussion here will help me sort her out.

Logic fail... yeah. Still waiting for the Kin DF to show, though. There's gotta be one. (Doesn't there?)

Doughnuts? Did somebody say doughnuts? I could use a doughnut while I go read the comments...
j p
19. sps49
Unaffiliated sisters see a choice between Elaida and REBELS. That is definitely a choice than can be delayed as long as possible.

I cut Birgitte some slack here. She's stressed out by being directly responsible for another person's life, and it is entirely new to her.

Oh, and now we begin the De-Powering of Nynaeve. This use of the Worf Effect will get old.
Lisa Keefe
20. fledge
The Seanchan seem to view damane as dangerous (and maybe not pure/less than human?) hence the need collar them. Given their strict control over everything, I'm mildly suprised they haven't bred out the genetics for chanelling by barring previous parents of damane children from having more offspring ever again. Or more likely, the parents would be too traumatized to have more kids.

I'm sure Birgitte is concerned about Elayne's safety because she genuinely cares about her as a person but does anyone have thoughts on what happens to women warders if their Aes Sedai die? Would they commit suicidal revenge like the men?
Maiane Bakroeva
21. Isilel
news has come from Aringill: the men escorting Naean and Elenia out of the town were ambushed and murdered.

Because securely transporting them via Travelling would have been too easy? Sigh. What do all those bloated plot-lines have in common, hm... ;)

Sareitha was actually pretty capable, if she could shadow Aviendha without discovery. In a city, granted, but still. She also seemed to know some interesting stuff. Too bad that she died without accomplishing anything.

Like the idea of Elayne's bodyguard, even with stupidly flamboyant uniforms! Too bad that Brigitte has to be yet another "unwilling leader" (I hope that she does become a badass general, eventually). And I used to think that one of her incarnations was Joan d'Arc too :(.

Whyever did Rand decide to dump the sul'dam and damane on Elayne? Surely, the thousands of Aiel WOs who didn't have to struggle for the throne could have dealt with them more effectively!
I hope that somebody figures out how to take them over the brink using a'dam. Maybe just pull OP through them, as through an angreal?

I wonder how the Kin rescue operation went, though. That could have handed Seanchan Traveling much sooner.

Oh, and I hated when Elayne started to defer to Nynaeve! It is a stupid, stupid system and they used to work so well together, without that "precedence" crap!

Speaking of an AS ruler - I guess that coronation oath and the promises she has to make when accepting oaths of fealty (all of which would be binding to a properly raised AS) sharply limit what an Amyrlin could demand of her and thus saufguards her nation from excessive WT meddling.

P.S. I'd love a ToM predictions thread! I have so many predictions of varying degrees of craziness, that I wish to unleash on the unsuspecting world!
22. AndrewB
Leigh opined above: "... up to a third of all the Aes Sedai out there had not actually chosen a side in the schism, but were instead just kind of hanging out and waiting to see who won before coming back. I really can’t decide if I think this is sharp political savvy or rather contemptible cowardice."

IMO, not taking a side during the White Tower split is an act of "contemptible cowardice." From an Aes Sedai's point of view, the split had become public. There was open fighting with the prior Amyrlin being deposed. This split caused a sizeable faction to openly choose a different Hall of Sitters and a new Amyrlin.

Further, both factions are forming/increasing their side's military might. Any living Sister should realize that a war is a likely scenario. Since 2/3 of the Sisters may be taking part in a civil war that the rest of the world will be able to witness, the remaining 1/3 must (morally speaking) chose a side. There comes a point where you can no longer sit on the sidelines and wait for events to play out. As Siuan might say if she lived in our world: it is time to fish or cut bait.

Thanks for reading my musings,
j p
23. sps49
Isilel @21-

Amyrlins Seat seem to consider any ruler to be subject to their orders already; I don't see any real difference.

The ruler's subjects may not like it, though.
Julian Augustus
24. Alisonwonderland
Leigh @Commentary:
Speaking of Nynaeve and strength issues, I found Elayne’s thoughts on that intriguing, since to my recollection this is the first time Elayne has thought of herself as subordinate to Nynaeve under the traditional Aes Sedai ranking rules.

I seem to remember in tPoD, when Elayne was chewing out Nynaeve for always hustling Lan into the nearest hayloft whenever she had a chance and for neglecting her duties, that Elayne said something like, "You are supposed to be our leader, well LEAD!"

Come to think of it, while Egwene managed to break away from Nynaeve's dominance while she was in the waste, Elayne has never stopped regarding Nynaeve as her superior since their Tower stay.
Janet Hopkins
25. JanDSedai
Of course, we have to remember that this is the first appearance of these characters in this book. So, for the casual reader, it has to establish the characters and where they are in the story; but for the more invested reader, still give enough new information that we are satisfied.

I am *so* glad that RJ never did a "what-has-gone-before" stchick! If you remember the story, fine. But if you don't, you get enough clues to pick up where it left off.

By this time in the series, I had started a re-read to coincide with the publication date of the new book. But some of the earlier books, I first read not having read anything in WOT for two years, so I was glad of the re-establishing thing RJ did.

The first book in the series I read was TDR, and I picked up who everybody was just fine. And the next book I read was TFoH; while I was a little confused as to how Rand got to the waste, the subsequent story flowed well. And then, I read everything else by Jordan, and really got "invested" in the story.

I could argue that TFoH is the last place that you could enter the story, but, certainly, LOC is the latest you could enter the story, and still have a clue of what is going on. I would not recommend Book 7 on to anyone who has not at least a cursory knowledge of the characters.

So, I think RJ did an admirable job of balancing the needs of the cursory reader and the fanatical reader. If this makes the story go a little bit slower that we could wish, I guess it is a fair trade-off when in makes the story more accessible to more readers.
Birgit F
26. birgit
Given their strict control over everything, I'm mildly suprised they haven't bred out the genetics for chanelling by barring previous parents of damane children from having more offspring ever again.

The Seanchan system needs damane, they just don't want them running free.

Ny probably hasn't reached her full potential yet. Will she be stronger than Alivia when the does?
27. Freelancer
"Tai'shar Manetheren."

Nynaeve knows how strong an approbation this is, coming from Lan. It is pretty much the highest compliment which a Borderlander has to offer another person, and often reserved for honor earned in battle. Without saying out loud, "I'm so proud of you for that decision!", which would have been uber-embarrassing in present company, he says so in a more personally moving way. Hence Nynaeve's dropped jaw, leaking eyes, and beaming smile.

Elayne. Nunya-bidness how the married folk get along behind closed doors.

Speaking of Elayne, it is shown repeatedly how well she understands and accepts the duties and behaviors necessary to be politically successful in Andor. Up to this point, should she do anything much differently than she is?

I get that Birgitte as military administrator is less exciting than as Elayne's Warder up to now. However, since Elayne is going to spend the next year NOT travelling across the lands, the adventuring factor is turned way down, and the politicking factor turned way up. If she isn't used in this way during this story arc, she is hardly used at all. Which is worse, Miss Hero-of-the-Horn-turned-Captain-General, or Miss Not-Appearing-in-this-Story-Arc? Better to have her this way than not to have her at all. Especially since we wouldn't want to have missed all the estrogen-positive-feedback happiness.

Hyphens, FTW!


Doesn't Birgitte recall a past life with the name Joanna? I'd always thought the same, had to be Joan d'Arc.

Elayne and Nynaeve were commanded by Egwene to behave as normally raised sisters, trying their best to obey the Oaths and traditions. I think it works in their favor for Nynaeve to take precedence in purely Aes Sedai matters. She is holding the unofficial office of Aes Sedai advisor to the Daughter-Heir, taking many problems off of Elayne's plate. Under the circumstances, I believe this would have been true regardless of relative strength and the deference model. Nynaeve's greatest competence is in exactly such forms of administration, which are not unlike her responsibilities as Wisdom.
Alice Arneson
28. Wetlandernw
RobM @5 - Funny, I always thought Moghedien was the weakest of the female Forsaken, with Mesaana next up. Not sure why. Might have to research it in the text. 13D also ranks them that way, but with no clear indication as to the reasoning.

fledge @20 - First, the Seanchan have no desire to eliminate the genes for channeling. They need the damane, and it's all part of their culture. Second, since you can't identify a potential damane until she's at least 12 (absolute minimum) and maybe not until 20 or 21, how could you possibly forbid parents of a channeler to have more children? Chances are they'd be done having chidren by the time their little damane was tagged anyway. So then what - go kill all her siblings? Even the Seanchan aren't quite that warped.

Isilel @21 Because securely transporting them via Travelling would have been too easy? Yeah, I thought about that too. Why not just send a capable channeler along, let her stay in a quiet place long enough to "learn" it, then take the whole shooting match straight through a gateway to the stableyard?

And I agree that sending the Seanchan women to the Aiel WO would have been cool; if anyone can get them to stop the nonsense and get with the program, they're the ones! Biggest problem with teaching them to channel at this stage, is making sure they work for the right people when they get going. The Aiel could help with that, too.

However, I rather liked it when Elayne started deferring the AS leadership to Nynaeve, if only as a logical division of labor. Elayne gets dragged into the AS/WF/Kin tangle enough as it is; she's better occupied doing her politics thing. Nynaeve needs to get back and get involved, and take on a real job. Since the AS system is handily set up to give her this one, great - use it for what you want. I've never had a problem with women who deliberately use the "silly system" when it makes sense and ignore it when it doesn't.

Can't wait to see your predictions!

AndrewB @22 - Since you brought it up... I can't at all blame those who were out of the Tower for not taking sides - at least not until they have a chance to learn more about what the two "sides" are and what caused the split. We as readers know all about it, but they have to rely on rumor and varying reports - for those who heard about it at all. At some point, those who find out probably should do something, but those who are living out in the middle of nowhere, or those who are on assignment as someone's advisor, might just be smarter to stay where they are until they actually have a chance to learn the truth. And frankly, if they had to choose a side based on what little they could reasonably be expected to learn (other than conversation with someone who was there), they should choose the Tower rather than a bunch of rebels. I'm jsut as glad they didn't.
Tess Laird
29. thewindrose
Is there some type of donut thing going around? My office b-day card was about if donuts could talk::blinks:: I think Bite Me was the best one:)

Elayne also wants Nynaeve to be her advisor at one point. Which brings up the thought 'will Mailkier become an inhabited nation again?' Maybe that should be on the rumored ToG predictions tread;)(Or maybe this should be what happens after aMoL?!)

Yikes - still at work, more later.

Richard Boye
30. sarcastro
Isilel@21, Freelancer@27

Ya know.

I always took Birgitte's previous incarnation of "Maerion" to be an allusion to Maid Marion, who in her long, checkered folktale history occasionally pops up as in drag as a boy in the band of Merry Men, or as a skilled archer in her own right... but, but....

I never twigged on Joana as being an allusion to Joan of Arc. Duh.

Any thoughts on what or who Teadra is supposed to allude to?
Torie Atkinson
31. Torie
@ 5 RobMRobM


That said, good idea! I'll see what I can do about a new thread.

For all: if there's ever an issue (with the site or with a user), one's best bet is to either flag the relevant comment or shoot me an e-mail. Alas, puny human limitations prevent me from reading every single comment on the site, but I am super responsive to e-mails and flags if you want to grab my attention, I promise!
Rob Munnelly
32. RobMRobM
@31 thank you torie very much. I am heartily sorry for my attention getting actions.
Torie Atkinson
33. Torie
@ 32 RobMRobM

I'm just joshing you! No worries at all. Thanks for the heads-up.
34. Freelancer
egads, torie, that was startling. i actually leaned back in my chair. see, you've left me unable to even touch the shift key.
Thomas Keith
35. insectoid
Yay new post!! Thanks Leigh.

Nothing to say right now; might think of something later. Brain's not exactly running on all cylinders at the moment.

However, I do wish to say: Happy Birthday Windrose!!

Torie @31: ::waves::

Free @34: LOL! *cough*

James Hogan
36. Sonofthunder
Yay, Torie is awesome! That thread makes my computer cry.

And for these chapters, I guess I'm just a nerd, but I thoroughly enjoy all the politics leading up to Elayne's throne. I love hearing the Harfor Reports and the Norry Files, and I even love how Birgitte is portrayed! The fact that she's always so frazzled and in a bad mood really hammers home the point how tough the Caemlyn situation is. If Birgitte's overwhelmed, you know it's bad!!

And Lan/Nynaeve...I love them. That is all.
37. EarthandIce
Spoiler Alert!

Alivia's function is to help Rand die, which is giving Min fits.


* Alivia - "Rand, I like Alivia. But she is going to kill you." Rand replies, "Helping me die isn't the same as killing me. Unless you've changed your mind about what you saw."

Opps, this is in the future, sorry.

This takes place in Far Madding when Rand is attempting to kill the four that attacked him in the Sun Palace (Raefar Kisman, Manel Rochaid, Charl Gedwyn, Peral Torval)

On the Aes Sedai who have not committed to either Elaida or Egwene, I think they do not want to commit to the rebels, and are not sure of Elaida being Amyrlin. This happens in real life more than most of us know. It is not really being a coward, it is a strategic move. Remember Aes Sedai were supposed to have invented Dae Demar (agh, I can never spell that) The Great Game. One of the moves in The Great Game is not to do anything, watching what other people do.

Ohh, captcha is because chances. Mmmmmm...The Game?
Thomas Keith
39. insectoid
@Windrose: Oh, and... Ack ;)

Bonnie Andrews
40. misfortuona
YAY Torie.
A shiny new thread means I can read it, and post, at home again. :D

Happy Birthday thewindrose. May you always find water and shade.

Mis-no more excuses
Richard Chapling
41. Chappers
Since a quick pass through Ideal Seek turned up no results, I'm going with the following: Rand ate it.

No mentions after he arrives at the Palace, along with his still-unexplained nightly excursions in LoC (end of Chapter 18, for example) point to sleep-Travelling to Caemlyn and a munch on an interestingly shiny doughnut (to keep today's theme...).

Also explains the pains in his side...
Thomas Keith
42. insectoid
Chappers @41: LOL!! (*cough*)

Bill Stusser
43. billiam
I always thought that the reason Alivia is stronger than Ny is because A is 400 years old. I would think that if Ny lives that long she would end up just as strong if not stronger?
Roger Powell
44. forkroot
Oh, and now we begin the De-Powering of Nynaeve
When I first read your comment, I read it as the "deflowering of Nynaeve", which Lan has certainly taken care of ;-)

IMO, having other Forsaken-class channelers popping up seems completely plausible, given that the White Tower measured strength against their own subset which we now know was quite limited.

So what do we learn? We learn that their foolish restrictions on the age for novices allowed them to miss Sharina, their ignorance of the true Sea Folk potential allowed them to miss Talaan, and a whole 'nother continent of channelers can (not surprisingly) produce an Alivia.

It just shows how incompetent and irrelevant the pre-Egwene White Tower had become. And their blind spots were not just limited to detecting channelers! We've already discussed what a farce the "Battle Ajah" turned out to be.

I'd rag on them more, but I am firmly convinced that one of Ishamael's projects over the years was to ensure the impotency of the White Tower through his BA proxies.
Don Barkauskas
45. bad_platypus
billiam @43: That's not the way it works. Channelers reach their full potential and then never improve. It depends on the amount of training they receive and channeling they do. Egwene, for example, is already at her full potential (because she was forced).
Hugh Arai
46. HArai
Of course Birgitte is unhappy. She explains it quite clearly to Elayne: She's not trained to be a general and she's clearly had enough experience as an adventurer and soldier to know what happens to armies when their general hasn't got a clue. The fact she's the only choice available at the moment (well, there's Lan, but it's not like that choice wouldn't have issues!) may be fact, but it won't make her happier.

The fact she's a Warder for an Aes Sedai with the survival instincts of a dodo bird is also unlikely to be happy making.
Alice Arneson
47. Wetlandernw
billiam @43 & bad_platypus @45 - I think b/p meant to say "how fast they reach it" depends on their training and how much they channel. But yes, once they reach their full potential, which happens in not-too-many years, they stop. In any case, trained women can come pretty close to evaluating another woman's full potential long before she actually reaches it. (With men it's different - they can't tell until they get there and don't change any more. IIRC, men also tend to increase in jumps, whereas women mostly follow a smoother growth curve. Might be wrong on that one.)
Sydo Zandstra
48. Fiddler
HArai on Elayne@46:

The fact she's a Warder for an Aes Sedai with the survival instincts of a dodo bird is also unlikely to be happy making.

That is one of the funniest remarks I've seen in this reread. :D

Sad it's true, too...
49. arvadal
I always thought that the fact that Elayne and Birgitte mirror and amplify each other's moods due to the warder bond contributed to her attitude. The stress they are both under would be amplified. Add in Elayne's pregnancy and the emotional roller coaster she becomes, and who can blame Birgitte.
John Massey
50. subwoofer

2 in a row! .50 Cal! Yay!

Ahem- you know, it seems to me that all sorts of bad-ass channelers are falling out of the woodwork. You can't swing a cat now for all the people that seem to be the "strongest channeler in an age". Is somebody gonna crack open a barrel of whoop-ass? On another tack- with all these hot stuff channelers, I was under the impression that they were going to play match-up with their counterparts for the DO but when the fight is on to cleanse Saidin, there was teamwork for the gooders and the baddies just ran around using guile and guerrilla tactics not much one on one.

Lan- well, leave it to a guy to get to the heart of matters;)

I find it curious that the Seafolk have no issues holding the AS to their side of the Bargain- and Ny and Co. do try to honor their side of things, but with Mat their is no question of backsliding and leaving the boy hanging out to blow in the breeze.

Queen's Guard? Meh- let 'er rip. They earn their stripes in the up coming siege. Birgitte is the shining light in the next few chapters for me.

51. Freelancer
In the jungle, the mighty jungle, the lion sleeps tonight...

But the woof stalks continually, ready to pounce on those major decimal numbers.

For insectoid: 0w3C


Not wrong. Saidar channelers progress in a virtually linear pattern until they arrive at their terminal strength.

RE: The Rose Crown
It is referenced 11 times between the start of Winter's Heart and the end of Knife of Dreams. None of which is an actual sighting of said crown, each reference is an internal POV, considering Andoran politics and what the future holds.
Tess Laird
52. thewindrose
sub - you are missing ..a.. ummm 0 there!
Back from work ...and a wonderful dinner of filet mignon and merlot, cheesecake and reisling, and we have sub at half a set. Picked up some cuarenta y tres on the way home, heard For Whom the Bell Tolls and at 40...and time marches on!!!

Wet and Free!! Sorry for any grammer and spelling mistakes going forward, and also any free-form associasion that may come from my choice of words! (teehee)

John Massey
53. subwoofer
Here's a thing- Elayne isn't the queen yet, there is some sort of house election to be held. Soooooo why does Elayne get the big fancy palace? Shouldn't she be hanging out somewhere until she is officially recognized and gets her secret decoder ring, or is this like possession is 9/10ths of the law type thing?

And yes, Elayne has earned several "forgot to duck" medals.

John Massey
54. subwoofer
Right, TOR dot just went sideways.

Good times.

@Wind, thanks for the heads up, I'm coming over:)

And I am not stalking nuthin', me life is full of happy coincidences. I am too much of a workaholic to be checking for post numbers on the thread. Baby needs a new pair of shoes.

Tess Laird
55. thewindrose
sub its cool, I know about the whole freudian thang and all:) Just joshing! I haven't heard that one in years!

We just had to restart the signal and all, so add yager to the mix! I am telling these people who say they are my friends that I am no longer teen/college age, and I may very well be bed ridden for the weekend if they keep it up! Yes , please some water? Nyn knew all about the water cure!

Tess Laird
56. thewindrose
insectoid **Yay** I got an Ack!!!

Let's hope that dosen't come back to haunt me in the morning;)
Ron Garrison
57. Man-0-Manetheran
Interesting comments about Birgitte becoming more "complainy." Never thought about it, but definitely agree. This made me think about how so many of the characters in these three books have become more stressy. Their lives are becoming messy; they struggle with being able to control their situations. This made me think about the Dragon being One with the Land and the growing darkness that is coming with Rand's descent. Why wouldn't the darkness be affecting his friends as well?
Tricia Irish
58. Tektonica
Windrose: Happy Birthday!!!!! So sorry to get here late...I hope you get everything you want! And more!

Torie: Thank you! You are wonderful with a cherry on top. We*heart* you.

Insectoid: I hope you're better sound awful!

Harai@46: The fact she's a Warder for an Aes Sedai with the survival instincts of a dodo bird is also unlikely to be happy making. ROFLOL!!

Politics v. Aes Sedai loyaties: I think Elayne's obligations to the people of Andor trumps all. The AS can go hang. (or come second).

Love the Nyn/Lan scene. Elayne is so clueless. And Lan, doing as promised, letting Nynaeve lead in public, quietly gives her major props for high integrity. So proud and loving of his wife. Nice.

Re: All the big deal channelers that are appearing. The Pattern may have been planning for this for a long time. Spinning out the necessary weapons to keep the Wheel turning. I do kind of wish we'd had some insight into who Alivia is, given her fearful task. She is a bit of a cipher. I wish I could trust her more.

I thought the whole Birgitte being flustered and unhappy as General was amusing at first....I still like her very much....but as this plot drags, er, goes on, the girl/girl bond thingy with all the emotional leakage and hormonal/pregnancy craziness really gets old. Sigh. Birgitte does rise to the occasion and grows into her position nicely, thank you very much. She's pretty much a walking MOA.

PS: Is there any birthday cake and merlot left in the bunker?
Tess Laird
59. thewindrose
Psst..Tek - sub and I are drinking some cuarenta y tres in the bunker(from now on 43). You live down south so you may? be familiar with it. Very good mixed or straight.
Birthday cake, I am blanking.. Oh yes - work brought us all icecream B-day cake - because I like icecream cake ,... we have our cake and need to eat it before it melts. No icecream in WoT:(

Tricia Irish
60. Tektonica
Thanks Wind....i'll be right in.....I'll bring some chocolate cake for Sub...he doesn't do dairy, if I remember correctly. I love curanta y tres...haven't had it years...oh boy...I love birthdays!
John Massey
61. subwoofer

I kinda sorta maybe started a wee tiff of a barfight once by calling out the bartender that was setting up shots. I told the guy "he had a lot of nerve serving that stuff here" or words to that effect and apparently the rep was there and didn't take that too well. To which I swiftly made some comments about may as well serve up NyQuil, then the conversation went downhill from there. Lemme tell ya, Jag reps have no sense of humor. Probably 'cause they have to drink the stuff.

John Massey
62. subwoofer
Wha? We've switched to lemon liquor? Holy shmoo! I'm gonna have to chug to keep up! You realize I'm operating heavy machinery tomorrow. This may be a challenge with a splitting headache.

...and, par for the course, I had a flippin' chefs salad for supper today. Who came up with that plan? Salad. For supper. Then we go on a bender. Why does it always have to be that way?

John Massey
63. subwoofer
yeah... like Wind, I'm half in the bag already. When you get older, you become mellow with imbibement. Me, I'm so mellow, it feels like nap-time.

Have you ever snored so loud you've woken yourself up?

... maybe its just me...

Tess Laird
64. thewindrose
sub -you say Jager, I say Yager..yum yeah, what ever... your right:)

Heavy machinery? That's nothing compared to what Saldean Farmboys have to do after a heavy night of drinking;)

Whoops we are in Caemlyn with Elayne right now. Some would say she needs a good night of..ahem..But then we get the cranky pregency stuff which we will hear much complaining about. Yep, good times! Thank goodness my two little spots of sunshine are visiting relatives!

Tess Laird
65. thewindrose
subwoofer - how about this one? This starts happening then like Mat you get out of Hinderstap!

john mullen
66. johntheirishmongol
So, it seems as if the Oath rod does more than shorten your life, it cuts down on the power you eventually can grow into. Proof is not only Alivia but the runaways/wilders.

Elayne, hot blonde goodness, yummy.

Brigit, take a chill pill.

Nynaeve, got that little sex glow thing going.

Lan, he's getting some.

The rest of it was setup for the whole kingdom thing. So when do we get to the necessary parts of the action?
John Massey
67. subwoofer
mmmmmmmmmmm? Elayne- sexy? When did that happen? Seems we have to get the heck out of Dodge a might early. Too bad, had a drinking game all lined up for us...

-another sign the end is near- wife is cussing in German. Must seek shelter...

light a shuck for Texas time here!

Sandy Brewer
68. ShaggyBella
When Rand sent the Suldam & Damane to Elayne, He thought there were four "real Aes Sadai" with her and in charge.

I am in the clutches of a nasty summer cold, I will opt for the Nyquil, since I don't have to work tomorrow.

At least this chapter was not about Mesema or Perrin.
Tess Laird
69. thewindrose
sub are you dropping off, just about the time we head off to the bar?

btw - In the frame of mind I am in tonight, that last link was halarious!

Alice Arneson
70. Wetlandernw
johntheirishmongol @66 - HUH??? No, they can tell how strong a girl will get long before she can get anywhere near the Oath Rod.
71. MasterAlThor

me heard a vicious rumor that you celebrating without me.....what gives?

I thought that we were cool like that?

Happy Birthday, may you have many more.

Specially since your only.....what....29


Jessica Thompson
72. CFP
In Ch. 35 we learn that Alivia "was stronger than Cyndane had been before the Aelfinn and the Eelfinn held her!" (I nabbed the quote from this article since I don't have the book myself.)

I've been taking the quote to indicate that Alivia is stronger than Lanfear was, even when Lanfear was at her most powerful. Since Lanfear was the strongest female channeler in ... ever, then I guess the apprehension the good guys show here is a bit more understandable.

At least, I could be missing something, but that's what stands out in my memory on the topic of ranking saidar-wielders.

While I also felt a bit miffed at finding Nynaeve outdone by several good team channelers, almost suddenly no less, I took comfort in her unsurpassed awesomeness in the full-of-win husband department, not to mention her attachment to the bracelet and rings angreal. It doesn't exactly make her stronger, but angreal are rare, and it could be a nasty surprise for someone who thinks they know how strong she is based on natural ability alone.
john mullen
73. johntheirishmongol
@70 Wetlander
I disagree, buddy. They can tell approximate strength and they could easily tell the girls were among the strongest found in generations, but the evidence points to some of the runaways having continued to develop more strength after having gotten away.

Equivalent to physical strength, if you live to be much older, you should continue to develop mental powers, until somewhat past middle age.
Alice Arneson
74. Wetlandernw
CFP @72 - Funny you should mention Nynaeve's angreal in the same post as you mention Cyndane's evaluation of her strength. In that scene, Alivia was using Nynaeve's angreal, so Cyndane got a "boosted reading" on Alivia. Here's one quote from RJ on the subject:
when Alivia faced Cyndane, Alivia was by far the stronger because of her angreal, and had various tools (ter’angreal) to work with besides, but Cyndane was much, much more knowledgeable about channeling. Alivia, after all, knew relatively little except how to be a weapon. That was very useful in the situation, but in this case, knowledge versus strength made it an even match.
(emphasis mine, for the immediate purpose.)

john @73 - Care to present some actual evidence?
Jessica Thompson
75. CFP
@72 and missing something, and @74 there it is. :)

Alice Arneson
76. Wetlandernw
CFP - I've got far too much of RJs blog memorized... :) Still, even without angreals Alivia is right up there near the top of the charts. In fact, the only one we know for sure is stronger is still Lanfear. Maybe Sharina, maybe Cyndane.
Thomas Keith
77. insectoid
HArai @46:
The fact she's a Warder for an Aes Sedai with the survival instincts of a dodo bird is also unlikely to be happy making.

Sub, you continue to be hilarious!

Free @0x33: I like to shoot for hexadecimal numbers. ;)

Wind @52/55/56: Sounds like you had a good time! You're welcome for the pic; believe it or not, that thing has been sitting collecting (magnetic) dust on our fileserver for almost 16 years. ;D

Tek @58: You should have heard me yesterday. As seldom as I get sick, it's still a bummer...

JTIM @66:
Elayne, hot blonde goodness, yummy.
YES! Take that, Elayne-bashers! :)

Alice Arneson
78. Wetlandernw
john @73 - Nope. In New Spring, it's made abundantly clear that a woman can be expected to reach her full potential after she has been raised to the shawl; the Oath Rod doesn't freeze it in place. In the scene following Moiraine's & Siuan's raising, when they are told about the strength heirarchy, Moiraine thinks
At least she and Siuan were near identical in strength, and likely would be as they gained their full potential. They had moved in lockstep so far.
A little later:
"...I thought we'd have to start at the bottom, but we're not so far from the top already. In another five years, we'll be close." (Siuan speaking) Whether or not they thought about it, everyone knew when they would reach their full strength; the length of time could vary considerably from woman to woman, but it was always a smooth climb in a straight line.
Very shortly thereafter, they meet someone new to them, and when Moiraine evaluates the other woman's strength, she notes that "it was nearly as great as her own and Siuan's would be eventually." Then, as she thinks about she and Siuan leaving the Tower to find the baby Dragon, she considers that "she for one did not intend to return until she was at her full strength."

So... No, taking the Oaths does not freeze your OP growth. They knew beforehand how strong they would eventually become, but they didn't reach that full strength for several years after.
Hugh Arai
79. HArai

Here's a thing- Elayne isn't the queen yet, there is some sort of house election to be held. Soooooo why does Elayne get the big fancy palace? Shouldn't she be hanging out somewhere until she is officially recognized and gets her secret decoder ring, or is this like possession is 9/10ths of the law type thing?

She is the offically decreed Daughter-Heir, so until she's "found unsuitable" (read: has her throat cut) she gets to use the official stationery.
Maiane Bakroeva
80. Isilel
Belated happy birthday, Windrose!

Personally, I wasn't bothered by Nyn being upstaged in strength department, because I found the whole "strength is everything (unless you are Moiraine)" irritating, contradicting a lot of world-building and generally counter-productive. I hoped that it was a sign that cleverness, ingenuity and skill as well as genuine leadership ability would be more important now. Didn't see a lot of indications of that since, though :(.

Speaking of Nyn and Elayne's relationship, no, Nyn was not the leader between them since TDR. While Elayne was not confrontational, they were equals. I really loved the true friendship and cooperation between the 2 of them, with minimum of mis-communication and all the required give-and-take.
That's why the intrusion of stupid, stupid AS hierarchy angered me so. Sure, there had to be some re-distribution of responsibilities, but they should have talked that over, instead of Elayne automatically ceding all AS decisions to Nyn, cause she is stronger in OP.

Re: Rand thinking that Elayne had 4 AS with her - thousands of WOs would still have incomparably easier time with over 20 sul'dam and 5 damane. I really don't see what he was smoking, there.

I also don't agree re: Elayne's survival sense - she has more of it than any of the boys!

And if Brigitte used to be Joan d'Arc and Maerion, she should have had experience of ordering people around and wouldn't have always been "a simple archer". I really don't see why RJ went into "unwilling leader" with Brigitte, we already have a glut of them.
Tricia Irish
81. Tektonica
Well, Wind and Sub.....

It looks like you had a grand old time after I left. (I dodged a bullet!) Hope your head(s) are OK today....*snark snark*
Good luck with the heavy equipment, Sub.
Wind...don't forget those's bright outside!
Jay Dauro
82. J.Dauro
sarcastro @ 12
Also, nice example of the Law of Conservation of Characters here - damane Lemore is probably Lady Lielwin, the Tarabonner noble who Egeanin sent off to her doom.

I do not think so. Lielwin was sent to become a da'covale. She could not channel. TSR-38
Leilwin had gone bound and gagged onto one of the courier boats in the dead of night; she was young and pretty, and someone would find a better use for her than slitting her throat. But Egeanin was not in Tanchico to find serving girls for the Blood.

Lemore is her real name, her damane name was Larie. WH-8
Lemore is just nineteen, a pampered noblewoman with the extreme bad luck to have the spark manifest itself in her on the very day Tanchico fell.
Susan Brownhill
83. SusanB
JanDSedai@25...You made me laugh...I started with book 7! I was studying abroad, someone just finished the book & recommended it to me. I read it in one weekend & fell in love. As soon as I got home (2 months later), I bought the first 6 and started reading. Its still one of my favorite books, as are all the rest ;).
Tess Laird
84. thewindrose
Thanks for the b-day wishes everyone! I am now starting the go back a year program:) (MasterAlThor - you know you are always welcome to the party!)

Samadai reported:
I just got confirmation that Jordancon 3 is going to be April 15-17 2011 at the Crown Plaza Ravinia. They are taking reservations now(got mine). Tell them you are calling about Jordancon to get the group rate. 1-888-233-9527

Tres cool! One of my goals this year is going - so see you there!

I am feeling great today.(Lots of water, works like magic!) We are kind of hot and muggy w/ clouds up here in the Twin Cities, so might not need the shades.

Wetlander has the right of what transpired in the Cyndane/Alivia cagematch. With what Nynaeve gave to Alivia before the show down, she had the tools she needed. Cyndane had all her knowelge though - so it ended up an almost equal fight. One of Alivia's arms was burned to the bone(Flinn fixed that.) I don't think Cyndane suffered any harm(but to her ego?)

85. EarthandIce
Wow, I guess I missed a party. Happy belated Birthday Windrose, and many more to come. My poison of choice has been Jose Cuevero, but that is me. I have also enjoyed a couple of Jeagers in the past.

Everyone get a couple good glasses of OJ into you (It always helped me the morning after).

The comments on all of the powerful channelers showing up I think is the Pattern getting ready for the Last Battle (of this age anyway from philosophical discussions eg. Herid Fell & Moridin).

We do not know all of the Dreadlord, just the Forsaken that are still breathing, and of course Taim and his cronies. I suspect there are other channelers we have not seen on screen, and who does Demandred have lurking in his camp.

Of course, Verin ferreted out many of the Black Ajah, but what about Wilders that are Darkfriends? Have all of them trained in the Tower?
John Massey
86. subwoofer

damn crows woke me up this morning. Status report- blazing ball o fire starting down on me evilly, mouth feels like an ashtray, head feels like perrin pounded it on an anvil, eyes don't seem to be working properly, and some nutbar keeps hammering away on a keyboard... wait, thats me. i'd start flyin on my reno but somewhere in the festivities of last night my shoes disappeared. this may take some stragety to figure out.

and i am putting an a.p.b. out some vandals stole the ram emblem off my truck. i am a firm believer in vigilante justice and an eye for an eye. They ripped something off me, so i will return the favor. maybe a nipple ring, nose ring, finger, ear, limb... whatever i happened to grab hold of. incidentally am now looking for a rare dodge ram er... ram emblem. if anyone has one floating around...

Tricia Irish
87. Tektonica
Hi Earth and Ice....nice to see you.

I think it's the Pattern spitting out the powerful channelers. Light side needs all the help it can get.

I'm interested in seeing what other info comes out of Verin's little black book in ToM and MoL....hopefully, she has more inside poop on all the DarkFriends/Dreadlords, running around, as well as theories on the Last Battle and the DO's End Game. I hope Egs gets Siuan (whom she can trust) working on the translation, pdq.

There are bound to be DF Wilders, Kin, Aiel, Seanchan, etc. I don't think any group is immune. Unfortunately.
Bonnie Andrews
88. misfortuona
Man sorry, but not surprised, to hear of your condition this morning.
There was a slightly chewed shoe outside the bunker when I came in this morning. Figure that might be yours.

Good luck on the renos today.

Mis-wondering where you can pawn a silver ram
Alice Arneson
89. Wetlandernw
subwoofer - thewindrose is right, you know. All the magic you need to prevent that feeling is water. One glass of water for every two drinks... you make an extra trip or two, but you wake up without the symptoms you described so eloquently. The only reason you feel that way is that you're dehydrated, and the best hydration is water. Of course, it works best in the midst of the party instead of waiting until the next morning...

WOT? I got nuthin - I shot my wad last night.
Alice Arneson
90. Wetlandernw
misfortuona - oh, you're a naughty one, you are! :>
James Hogan
91. Sonofthunder
Ahhh, I missed the party last night!! Happy birthday, windrose!!!!! :)
Holger Marx
92. DreamHealer
Re: Strength of the female Forsaken

From a Mesaana-POV we know that she is as strong in the One Power as Semirhage. I would assume (without facts to prove it) that Greandal is stronger than those two, but of course Semirhage has a much meaner reputation.
Alice Arneson
93. Wetlandernw
DreamHealer - Well, from a Mesaana POV we know that she thinks she's as strong as Semirhage... ;)

For anyone curious, Linda has done a pretty good analysis of saidar strength rankings over at the Thirteenth Depository. It's not canon, since it was put together by a reader, but she did a pretty thorough job based on what we have from the books and from Q&A or blog comments from the authors. It's worth a read, in any case.
Tess Laird
94. thewindrose
I had a thought(alarming I know) about Birgitte. When Min really views her for the first time she see's:
Auras danced around her and images flickered, more than Min had ever seen around anyone, thousands it seemed, cascading over one another. Those multitude of images and auras flashed by too quickly for her to make out any clearly, but she was certain they indicated more adventures than a woman could have in one lifetime. Strangely, some were connected to an ugly man who was older that she, and others to an ugly man who was much younger, yet somehow Min knew they were the same man.
I don't think Birgitte ever has memories of the times when she is much older than Gaidal Cain. Maybe in these incarnations she becomes a great general or battle leader? -And since she never remembers the times she is much older than Gaidal, she also doesn't remember being a leader? I do hope that may be it. I also think it would be nice to see Birgitte as a leader.

Sam Mickel
95. Samadai
Let's all remember that none of Mat, Perrin, Or Rand considered themselves leaders either. Birgitte is actually a good leader, she uses what she knows to make people follow her lead.
Sydo Zandstra
96. Fiddler
Re: Birgitte as a Leader.

There is Leading a Palace Guard, and there is Leading an Army.

I liked reading about Birgitte leading the Palace Guard and how she rescued Elayne. (I don't consider this a MOA though, even if I like Birgitte a lot)

Lady Marian and Joan of Arc weren't commanding armies, as in planning strategies and battlefield tactics. So even if Birgitte has been these people in former lives, her turning out to be a Great Captain Class Leader would be disappointing to me. Gawyn, on the other hand, likeable or not, does have the makings to become one.

I don't think RJ had that in stock for Birgitte. She'll probably soon get back to being Elayne's Warder.
97. Freelancer
Of course, there's a better solution than even over-hydrating to avoid those wonderul morning-after sensations. But then again, almost everyone swears to make that choice while in the throes of a hangover, and they almost never mean it. Good times!

Birgitte is "living in interesting times". I don't know why she should complain. Plus she gets to wear that wonderul costume. Yes, Leigh, when Elayne's newly commissioned Queen's Guard outfits are described, I immediately saw Richard Chamberlain, Michael York and Oliver Reed.
John Massey
98. subwoofer

To quote Silk I read this series 20 years ago and I can barely remember what I had for breakfast most times- "water? I'm thirsty, not dirty." geeze. That's right, kick a fella when he is hung over. See if I save any salsa for you.

I'm a firm believer in the ol' hair of the dog that bit you cure-all. Works every time.

Found my shoes- wife had the idea of throwing them up on the bunker. If I was sober enough to negotiate the stairs, I've earned them. Guess I wasn't, which incidentally explains the abrasions and various bruises I woke up with. And the song of the night was-beer for my horses. Can't sing to save myself, but my wife and friends lemme give 'er on the kareokee machine.
It is curious how friends have your back though. I was bummed by my truck being vandalized and my buddies have no problems letting me make a doof of myself and I am sure there will be a youtube video shortly.

Wasn't Moses the Cardinal in the movie? ahhhh memories...

John Massey
99. subwoofer
Incidentally, I have an 80 Gal air compressor that makes an unholy amount of noise for a person in a delicate condition. Am seriously thinking of selling it for a quieter model. Maybe get a team of midgets to blow into the other end of the air-hose. Hopefully they can generate enough psi.

John Massey
100. subwoofer
Awwwww, I gotta be me:)

Good times indeed.

That was an interesting link Wet gave on power rankings. I cannot fathom the amount of time it took to research, chart and figure out the who's and what's to get that ranking. My post-it note system pales in comparison.

Alice Arneson
101. Wetlandernw
Freelancer - Well, suggesting moderation to subwoofer seemed a bit... you know... uhh... ::shrug:: I personally never met a hangover I liked, but subwoofer seems to enjoy his, so... oh well.

::shakes head::

::mutters:: who ever heard of enjoying a hangover? Oy.
Tricia Irish
102. Tektonica
Sub: I love that stupid movie. Thank you.

I hope your surviving the day. Water doesn't help me at all anymore. I've become a light weight. It's just not worth losing a day. Sigh. I used to be a good drinker.....
103. Freelancer

Yes, that's Ben Hur alright. And Bonnie Parker as MiLady de Winter, Proximo as Athos, Allan Quatermain as Aramis, Beau Geste as D'Artagnan, and Lilian Lust as Constance.

One of the better cast films of my lifetime.
John Massey
104. subwoofer
Like I said, pshaw! I've been hurt by professionals, what's a little headache?

I remember getting 24hr leave, being wayyyy in the bag and making it back to base for 2 hrs rack time then turning out for a 10 miler. I did say I'm an old infantryman. I am used to soldiering through pain and abuse. It is what we do.

Heck, even in my uni days, I recall there was a few times I was testing for VO2 max for double sculls and my test days came right after last day of classes. Goin' hard till 0500 then showing up for a 10000 meter hard erg. Yeesh. Good thing they never linked the breathing thingy to a breathalyzer;)

Pain is temporary.

It was a fun movie. Proximo in another outstanding role.

105. fscx

You do forget one thing with the female side of the one power, in the Nynaeve/Alivia strength issue. And that is that Females grow stronger over time. At this point in time Nynaeve is what between 25 and 30ish in age while Alivia is over 400 years. And that it has been stated that Nynaeve has not reached her full potential yet where as Alivia probably has. Meaning that Nynaeve is possibly still stronger the Alivia. And that Jordon is only showing Alivia to show what how much Stronger Nynaeve will become. But that is my opinion because up till this point all we have had for powerful female one power wielders are the forsaken.
diane heath
106. jadelollipop
Have finally finished COT and started KOD. Had forgotten the details of Galad's emptiness walk etc (and putting rage into the void) which made so many wonder if he will channel. (seeing the flies wings move for instance)
But was actually mildly amused when it was mentioned that Galad had thought the death of Valda would be satisfying but nothing would change unless Morgase was alive again. (RAFO in November?)
Re: the above discussion of Darkfriends... Suroth mentions that she is Atha'an Shadar which is Seanchan for Darkfriend. She wants to collar Liandrin but despairs of finding a DF among the Sul'dam
That was never an easy task--relatively few sul'dam turned to the Great Lord
Alice Arneson
107. Wetlandernw
fscx @105 - There's one teensy little problem with that. An experienced channeler can tell what a woman's potential is, long before she reaches it. After some work with the Power, a new channeler can tell what her own eventual strength will be, as well as that of others around her. So the extent of Nynaeve's potential is known to her and those around her - and her full potential is still less than Alivia has reached. (Although, yes, Alivia has probably long since reached her full extent.)

jadelollipop @106 - I'd never really noticed that particular statement before. Very interesting... and of course it makes me wonder how the DFs find each other - or did before the FS came along and created their own lines of "communication."
John Massey
108. subwoofer
I always thought the baddies communicated through Fades. Y'know, watch me kill my family to prove myself loyal to the big black hat... then the Fades would introduce one baddie to another if they needed to team up or something. Just a thought.

109. Freelancer
TPoD, Chapter 30:
Some might cause minor problems, and one, a grandmother named Sharina with a potential above even that of Nynaeve, certainly had everyone startled...

WH, Chapter 8:
"Two of the Seanchan women ... seem truly horrified at the prospect of freedom. Alivia has stopped that. Now she says it was only because she was afraid she would be retaken. she says she hates all the sul'dam, and she certainly makes a good show of it, snarling at them and cursing them, but. . . ." She shook her head slowly in doubt. "She was collared at thirteen or fourteen, Elayne, she's not certain which, and she's been damane for four hundred years! And aside from that, she is . . . she's . . . Alivia is considerably stronger than Nynaeve," she finished in a rush.

Given that these women understand about potential, and the steady rise thereof until a woman reachers her ultimate strength, they would certainly say if Alivia's strength is not greater than what Nynaeve expects to attain. But what they say is that she is "considerably stronger", not "So, that's what Nynaeve is going to reach".

No cipher in that, pretty straightforward.
Joseph Blaidd
110. SteelBlaidd
Had a thought about Traveling and why the AS seem to use it so poorly here at the begining.

It Occurs to me that, at this point in the story, in the AS mind Traveling is very much like flying was in the Fifties. Powerful, luxurious, and a special occasion. As such they seem to treat it as a limited commodity that they can use up if their not careful. So in the first few times they do it it's an event (We're TRAVELLING(dun-dun-dun)). With a lot of padding on either end. Remember that sending people of to get Naean and Elenia is only the fourth time Elayne has traveled and only the 2nd or third gate she has made.

Rand on the other hand treats Traveling like you would your car, and not even a special car but more like the junker you keep for your commute to work. its a go any where park however kind of thing. This is i think a result of his familiarity(from LTT) with Traveling as a mode of transportation. Ans as the series progresses and everyone else starts to get more comfortable with it they start using it the same way, But at this point in the story Elayne and co are not used to thinking of traveling as a convenience as opposed to a luxury.

@windrose happy belated birthday. I bring cake.
Jonathan Levy
112. JonathanLevy

I do not think so. Lielwin was sent to become a da'covale. She could not channel. TSR-38
Leilwin had gone bound and gagged onto one of the courier boats in the dead of night; she was young and pretty, and someone would find a better use for her than slitting her throat. But Egeanin was not in Tanchico to find serving girls for the Blood.

Well, we know that being in dire need tends to manifest latent channeling sparks, and being bound and gagged in the streets while young and pretty, certainly qualifies as DIRE NEED. That said, I think it's too early to quote this as an instance of character conservation - though if it is confirmed later on, I think it will be the best example so far. Better than Breane, Paitr, or Shiane. In any case, my hat off to you sarcastro, for spotting the potential.

Lemore is her real name, her damane name was Larie. WH-8

Lemore, eh? Lovely name.

Then, methought, the air grew breathless, stifled by the silver necklace,
held by der'sul'dam whose footfalls tinkled on the tufted floor-
"Wretch!" I cried, the Seanchean sent thee - by this A'dam they enslaved me!
Grand me respite and nepenthe, from my memories of Lemore!
Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe, and forget the lost Lemore!

Quoth the Sul'dam "Nevermore."

(runs for cover)
John Massey
113. subwoofer
Hey- watch it! This is my hiding place. Did you at least bring something to eat?

114. AndrewB
Subwoofer @98 said: "To quote Belgarath- 'water? I'm thirsty, not dirty.'"

A David Eddings reference. Not something I expect to hear/see from this group. One problem Subwoofer. Belgarath never said that line. It was Silk; the morning after he saw his mother at the Drasnia royal palace. (Castle of Wizardy, book 4 of the Belgariad.)

I am in the minority here. I enjoyed David Eddings. His character development was excellent. Yes, his plots were simplistic, but I think the writing made up for it. The Elenium (the 1st Sparhawk novel is one of my favorite fantasy series).

Also, his stand alone book, Regina's Song, was a very entertaining read.

Thanks for reading my musings.
Tricia Irish
115. Tektonica
Jonathan Levy@112:

Wonderful Poe, fwiw! Nice.
diane heath
116. jadelollipop
@114 I don't think you are the only one who enjoys reading David Eddings. I love the Belgariad series but the Elder Gods series was a bit disappointing (the ending anyway).
Birgit F
117. birgit
I don't think Birgitte ever has memories of the times when she is much older than Gaidal Cain. Maybe in these incarnations she becomes a great general or battle leader?

In the past, she was always younger, but she is ripped out of TAR after Gaidal Cain is reborn, that might change the pattern for the future.

I am rereading the Belgariad at the moment. Barak isn't happy when the Dryads offer them water to drink, either.
Sydo Zandstra
118. Fiddler
I have a soft spot for Eddings too, since it was reading the Belgariad (translated in Dutch) that got me into reading fantasy when I was about 12 years old. Without Eddings, I probably never would have read Tolien, RJ, Erikson, Kay, Bujold, Pratchett and many other good authors, and that would have been regrettable... ;)

My favourite series by Eddings is the Elenium. IMHO it's his best writing (with the Tamuli being his worst, although I never read anything that was published after that).

I am rereading the Belgariad at the moment. Barak isn't happy when the Dryads offer them water to drink, either.

LOL! He wouldn't be.
Tess Laird
119. thewindrose
I was musing on Birgitte for this reason:
Auras danced around her and images flickered, more than Min had ever seen around anyone, thousands it seemed, cascading over one another. Those multitude of images and auras flashed by too quickly for her to make out any clearly, but she was certain they indicated more adventures than a woman could have in one lifetime. Strangely, some were connected to an ugly man who was older that she, and others to an ugly man who was much younger, yet somehow Min knew they were the same man.

And then add what RJ said on Min's viewings:
"Do Min's viewings always predict the future, or do some tell about the past, mainly the 7 towers around Lan in The Eye of the World?

A: "Um, her viewings are always concerning the future."

-Robert Jordan, Glimmers Interview

So these views of Birgitte are of the future(which would indicate at least 2 things:
1. Birgitte is tied to the wheel as a hero of the horn(again or still?)
2. Gaidal and her hook up.

What I am going out on a limb with is I think there were pasts where Birgitte was the older by far, and she never remembers these. So she could alternatively do different things this time as opposed to what she normally does with Gaidal. They are still linked during these times, but I don't think as lovers. Perhaps he keeps gaining ranks in her army and is singled out as the person to follow her, and they have adventures that way? We probably won't know, as this all would happen way after aMoL. He is not as old as Olver, and Olver is 10 in CoT.

John Massey
120. subwoofer
Love Eddings, though he does do the Star Trek version of fantasy- "we'll take all the kings and queens of the world and we'll send them down to the planet while all the people that may have skills for traipsing around hangs out playing crib." That and everybody at some point seems reasonable. Not true in real life.

Take me for instance.

But it was a good read at the time. Tried to get into Elder Gods, it was a tough row to hoe.

Edit- Weeeeeeeeeeee! Life is good. Scored the 13 on the open thread. Now I am a happy camper:P

Bonnie Andrews
121. misfortuona
AndrewB @114
I'm quite surprised that you were surprised. From what I recall of past discussion, most people enjoyed if not loved at least the Belgariad, though I suppose I have heard people complain that he recycled that plot.
I'm in the loved it camp and personally Belgarath is one of my favorite Fantasy characters ever.

Mis-might have actually stewed my brain today
Sam Mickel
122. Samadai
No comments for 8 and a half hours.
okay this is weird. people have lives? who knew
Alice Arneson
123. Wetlandernw
Samadai - it appears to be widespread. Theoryland's "Tamyrlin" commented on facebook earlier today:
Is it me or is the online #WoT world very quiet? Seems like a great time for a new theory! Working on it...(having others work on it too).
Someone else called it "the quiet before the storm" of TofM.

Hey, do you suppose we'll get the prologue and first couple of chapters early again?
a a-p
124. lostinshadow
Count me in among the Eddings lovers. the Elenium was definitely my favorite of his work though I also enjoyed the Belgariad.

Like Fiddler, Eddings is what got me into fantasy (though not in Dutch) and I swear got my verbal SAT scores up. Between my PSATs and SATs I did absolutely no studying but did read a lot of Eddings then more fantasy and my verbal score (back when these things were scored over 800) went from a 480 to a 740. after that my parents never interfered in my choice of reading material again.

Wetlandernw@123 they probably will do another teaser. though I'm not sure it helped. it was really painful getting only that little bit.
Barry T
125. blindillusion
I'm a fan of Eddings.

Silk is the man.

And Wetlander, I'm hoping so...

Though I'm going to avoid the Spoiler threads like the plague...this time. =|

(And hmm, seems I missed quite a bit by taking the weekend off to go to Mississippi. Lots to catch up on.)
126. Freelancer
Look what happens when this place is neglected. People gushing over another author, mangling Poe, and someone stole 13 from blind. Just shameful behavior...

You know, I remember that RJ said all of Min's viewing were of the future, but the babe in a cradle with a sword, that's Lan himself, so I'm thinking there's one or two that have already happened. Of course, one could also consider it an Aes Sedai answer, given the cyclical nature of the Wheel. There is no event in the past which is not also in the future, on a subsequent turning. When is an answer not an answer?
a a-p
127. lostinshadow
and on totally unrelated note...compliments of my mother in law :p

A little known fact....

The first testicular guard, the "Cup",
Was used in Hockey in 1874 and
The first helmet was used in 1974.
That means it only took 100 years for men
To realize that their brain is also important.

[b][u]Ladies.....Quit Laughing. [/u]

Thomas Keith
128. insectoid
Free @126: The babe in the cradle with a sword could refer to Lan himself... but it could also be one of his future children w/ Nynaeve... Just sayin'.

Lost @127: BAHAHAhahaha!! Silly jocks.

EDIT: =}

Maiane Bakroeva
129. Isilel
So, given the wasteland here of late ;) I went to throw a look at Dragonmount and saw this:

"So, I recently asked Brandon why Amys or Bair didn't try to contact Edarra in her dreams when they were looking for Tam. Brandon replied...

BrandonSandrson: @WoTLuckers There's a reason. TofM may shine light on that."

And also, a confirmation of something that bothered me for a long time:

"Wise One's are trained to know a dreamwalkers touch, and we see them convey information back to the dreamwalkers in the past--Seana repeats what a Wise One named Alsera told her."

So, it seems that I was right and Rand's WOs should have been in contact and able to exchange information with Perrin's group the whole time. So, why the PLOD? Dun- dun-dun...

Fiddler @96:

So even if Birgitte has been these people in former lives, her turning out to be a Great Captain Class Leader would be disappointing to me.

Why, exactly? Through all her memories, she should know the mistakes a military leader could make and manage to avoid them. She is certainly much more fit to be a Great Captain than Perrin or Gawyn, IMHO.

And speaking of Joan d'Arc, she certainly had no problems with taking on huge responsibility or making big strategical decisions. Even if whether she commanded on the battlefield is debatable.

But if Brigitte has "always been just a simple archer", she couldn't have been Joan anyway. Hm... and what was Brigitte during the War of the Shadow? A shock-lance sniper? She couldn't have been an _archer_ surely...

Gawyn, on the other hand, likeable or not, does have the makings to become one.

Gawyn is a great fighter and good at small unit tactics. But despite all the Bryne's training, he is short-sighted and consistently unable to see the big picture, which is the worst failing in a general, IMHO. Also, he always disregarded Elayne's decisions and wishes so far, which doesn't bode well for the possibility of them working together profitably. And anyway, he'll have his hands full with being the Amyrlin's warder.
Jonathan Levy
130. JonathanLevy

I always thought that in tEotW Min's ability also let her see the 'status' of someone (i.e. significant aspects of their identity). Hence she saw Lan with seven ruined towers around his head, and a babe in a cradle holding a sword.

In the next books, this was subtly shifted to only include future events.
Rob Munnelly
131. RobMRobM
126/128 - We've had this discussion before but I've always believed the babe with the sword refers to the restoration of Malkier in the future rather than a backwards look at Lan himself. My problem is that under the same theory what is the future related event of Thom that involves a man, not him, juggling fire and the white tower? Perhaps it refers to...Mat and we'll get more info in ToM?

JLevy - very Poe-tic.
Tricia Irish
132. Tektonica
It certainly is quiet around here....hello? *echo* hello?
Perhaps is summer vacation for many? Off to explore distant vistas in RL? Or enjoying the outdoors with family and friends? Or these chapters? (oops, did I say that out loud?)

Lost@127: Very very funny. Interesting mother-in-law! ;-)
diane heath
133. jadelollipop
Brandon Sanderson Going through TofM and adding chapter names/icons (both chosen by Harriet) and combining chapters at her direction.

He states the deadline is in two weeks when the final version will be sent to Tor.

Nothing to say about current chapters. Already waiting for Tuesday's post :}
James Hogan
134. Sonofthunder
It is quiet in here! Maybe it's just because we've found other books to read during our plod through this one. So during this quiet, allow me to wander off topic...At least, I've been reading the first couple books again(currently reading TGH for only the third time ever!). And maybe this is just because being active on here has made me more critical, but as I've read TGH, I'm convinced that if it had come out under Brandon's name, we would be tearing it up in literary indignation! RJ seems to have had a bit of a different style back then. Lots of people going "Aaahhh!" and overall, not the style I'm used to. Is this just me being overcritical for no good reason?

Also, it is quite hilarious seeing how he didn't have everything quite planned out yet. The Aielman comparing Verin's face to a Wise One's. Turak's head being shaved bald(he's not of the Imperial family, is he??). On the other hand, so many awesome things are foreshadowed and it's so cool seeing people meet for the first time(just read about Elayne, Min and Egwene meeting - at the moment, Egwene is jealous of all these girls that Rand knows. Cracks me up) Also, Moiraine is awesome. The end.
Rob Munnelly
135. RobMRobM
@134 - I read TGH a few weeks ago as well. I like the intro scenes in Shienar although they drag a bit (love love love the intro of Verin - "and I assume the "man who channels" from the Dark Prophecy is one of your three boys, Moiraine"); the hunt for the horn drags quite a bit; like the early scenes with the girls in the tower; like the Carhien party scene (with Breane hitting on Rand); love the Portal Stone trip to Toman Head; like the Falme scenes ... but still can't figure out the particular form of power that gets Rand up in the sky with Baalzamon and/or why Balzamon didn't die when Rand stuck a sword in his heart? In sum, not one of my favorites, bottom third or even bottom quarter.

vo mabulay
137. alreadymad
Sonofthunder @134
All of the Seanchan High Blood become members of the Royal family and are assigned ranks in the succession.
James Hogan
138. Sonofthunder

Ahh, that does make sense. Turak said something about being 12th in line to the throne, so I should have figured. Thanks!
Marcus W
139. toryx
Re: Min's viewings: I think that Min sees the future and things as they are. When she looked at Lan and saw the babe with the sword and the towers, she was seeing who he was at the time of the viewing. Those two events, for all that they happened in the past, are a substantial part of his character and as a result they dictate a great deal of where he's going, what he does and who he will become.
140. Megaduck
Re: Min's Viewings
I always thought that Min's viewings of Lan foretold the return of Malakar. The babe is his and Nyns son who'll become the next king of the seven towers.

Sadly, that doesn't bode well for Lan's survival of the last battle.
Matthew Smith
141. blocksmith
It has been a very busy couple of weeks in RL...finally caught up on the reread and comments. Forgive any type-os... trying to type with a potentially broken forearm (long story involving girls softball, coaching first base, and a bat).

Anyway, the only thing I have to offer is that I think the damane/sul'dam problem could be solved with a little Verin-like compulsion. Implant the idea that the sul'dam can see the weavees...implant the idea that the damane can be free...and voila- you have the start of a beautiful friendship. Or at least a little more open-mindedness. I have to figure that Nyn, at least, realizes that a little compulsion is possible (after what Moghedien did). Perhaps it's just not in her character to do so.
Alice Arneson
142. Wetlandernw
blocksmith - Yeouch. Somebody throw the bat they forgot to leave at home plate?

I like the idea of "compulsion-lite" on the damane & sul'dam! At least, in a way I do. Because it's obviously for such a good cause. On the other hand, it makes me cringe - is taking away someone's free will for "our" purpose any better than when it was taken aways for "their" purpose? Obviously the damane had their free will taken away, in large part, the moment they were collared. Would that make it more conscionable for Nynaeve (if she knew how) to use even Compulsion-lite to manipulate their will? It's dicey. From a pragmatic standpoint, it makes all the sense in the world. Verin would do it in a heartbeat, and I suspect maybe Egwene would too. I'm not sure about Nynaeve or Elayne. Any of the Wise Ones would. But the Aes Sedai have been so steeped in the idea that Compulsion is Evil that I'm not even sure Cadsuane (who is nothing if not pragmatic!) would be willing to use it - even the Lite version that requires the Compelled person to find a reason within themselves to comply.

Still, it would be a fairly elegant solution. Apply a little mild Compulsion just to make them see the possibilities outside their deeply-ingrained assumptions, and see what happens. :)
Tess Laird
143. thewindrose
141 and 142 - nope, I can't see the light side using it, even if it may seem like a good idea. BTW, Blocksmith did you happen to see Inception for that idea;)JJ^_^

I had a frivolous thought, so I came back here. You know how we like to dissect the names and connect them to historical figures, and stuff like that? Well check out Gawyn - there is a yawn in there! Galad, is glad!(Or we are glad to look at him;)

Matthew Smith
144. blocksmith

Let's just say I should have learned my lesson long ago to make a wide berth around batters in the on-deck circle.

That said, it's been worth the pain...the team did great making it to their first championship game (unfortunately losing but the experience was wonderful for the 12 young ladies and the coaches).

Agreed on the compulsion is evil thing...very clearly it has really only been used by Forsaken, DFs, and the occasional warder bond enforcement. And you definitely hit that gray area in this case. Just thought it would solve Elayne's problems, but could lead to a very slippery slope.
Matthew Smith
145. blocksmith

No Inception for me as yet...although it does look interesting. Not a big DiCaprio fan...except the Departed, which being a Boston-based movie I wanted to like anyway (that's me being a shameless homer).

Does that make Egwene gween with envy?
146. Freelancer

As hilarious as your mother-in-law's tidbit is, I counter with the simple truth that the brain is already protected by a bone enclosure, and is therefore somewhat less vulnerable.


Well, the vision around Thom of a man (not him) juggling fire really must be his nephew Owyn, I seriously doubt it's Rand. While Mat juggles, he doesn't juggle fire, and even if he did that wouldn't bring any connection to the White Tower. Nah, that vision is the lead-in to Thom explaining why he stays with RPM until Whitebridge, why he attacks a Fade to give them a chance to run. And Lan is described in that same book as having been given three things while still in the cradle; a locket, a pledge, and a sword.


Am ensconced in my own pre-release readthrough, about 70% through TDR now, so have recently finished TGH as well. Yes, there are some small things that get retconned or revised later, but the two you cite are actually fine. The years do not touch Wise Ones as they do other women, so a reasonable connection could be made to Verin's ageless face, even though hers is amplified by three Oaths. And Turak is a High Lord, ranked even above Suroth.


I cannot conceive of Nynaeve using Compulsion of any sort on anyone. She has been the victim of a mild Compulsion by Moghedien, and she has seen what happened to the chandler's apprentice, Kerb, when she removed Graendal's Compulsion from the boy. But before any of that greusome firsthand experience, she despises anything which takes freedom from another being. I believe Elayne has the Kin taking care of this already. Some of the sul'dam have broken, and admitted they see the weaves, and then there is Bethamin and Seta, who are still with Mat's entourage, and Bethamin at least has begun to channel. That should get the ball rolling on destroying the Seanchan leashing tradition.
Ron Garrison
147. Man-0-Manetheran
blocksmith@144 re. compulsion - There is also the "extra bit" from Logain's men bonding the AS.
Maiane Bakroeva
148. Isilel
Freelancer @146:

Well, the vision around Thom of a man (not him) juggling fire really must be his nephew Owyn

Why can't it be his son with Moiraine? And speaking of the White Tower - well, if Thom marries Moiraine, he will be tied to WT through her.

Jordan did say that _all_ Min's viewings are of the future, IIRC.

While I don't think that Malkier is going to be restored - honestly, I think that most countries will cease to exist and/or will be formed into new political entities after LB, IMHO, nothing speaks against Lan fathering a kid who'd become a heir to Malkieri tradition.
Heidi Byrd
149. sweetlilflower
Maybe Min actually saw the ToG instead of the WT. It could have been Mat juggling fire. I guess we will RAFO...
Tess Laird
150. thewindrose
sweetlilflower, could be possible if she saw a D. Sweet cover...

Rob Munnelly
151. RobMRobM
Mat could very well be juggling fire in the Tower of Ghenjie. Fire to blind, etc. If he gets Moiraine out, easily could be juggling the White Tower too.
Bonnie Andrews
152. misfortuona
Mat's balls of fire, might also be the tied to the cannons. The light knows he's going to be doing some juggling yet to see those come to use.

Mis-just needed an excuse to say it
153. Granten
Two points to make on these chapters. The first is that, yes Elayne did have some time of freedom where she could roam the countryside while declaring she would never need the help of men like Mat, Thom or Julian. If memory serves she also got kidnapped and then rescued by those men at least once a book. Seriously, this is supposed to be an intelligent woman?

The second, her political analysis is at best as unlikely as some of the calculations made in the later Sherlock Holmes novels.
154. Freelancer
"The strongest images around the gleeman are a man--not him--juggling fire, and the White Tower."

Mat has been taught to juggle, but that doesn't make this vision of him. And Min is clear on it being the White Tower. I know Jordan claimed that all of Min's visions were future, but I think that is a concept he adjusted later, and couldn't retcon these items once they were in place. The ruined towers around Lan's head are past/current, certainly not future.
"The strongest things I see about the big, curly-haired fellow are a wolf, and a broken crown, and trees flowering all around him. And the other one--a red eagle, an eye on a balance scale, a dagger with a ruby, a horn, and a laughing face."

The stuff for Perrin is clearly all in the future, as is most of the viewing for Mat. But what about the red eagle? That's Perrin's emblem later, not Mat's. However, there is very strong suspicion that one of his past incarnations is Aemon himself.

Just saying...
Rob Munnelly
155. RobMRobM
Free - not a bad point. Could argue, in counterpoint, that Mat manifested Manetheren several times thereafter, including the war cry in EOTW, the healing scene in TDR, the aftermath of the quarterstaff fight in TDR and the decision to adopt a Manetheren commando group, the Band, as name of his war unit. But we probably won't know for sure until the post-series Encyclopedia comes out....
Birgit F
156. birgit
And Turak is a High Lord, ranked even above Suroth.

Suroth is a High Lady, that should be the female equivalent of a High Lord.

Most of Mat's memories are from Manetheren, that is a strong connection to the Red Eagle.
a a-p
157. lostinshadow
blocksmith@145 - for what it's worth, I'm not much of a DiCaprio fan either but Inception was great fun. if you liked him in the Departed (aside from the movie being in Boston), you may enjoy him in Inception as well.
Jonathan Levy
158. JonathanLevy
135. RobMRobM

Re: TGH. I always thought the chapters on Toman Head were of the highest quality. The rest of the book - less so.

Re: Min's Viewings
I always thought that Min's viewings of Lan foretold the return of Malakar. The babe is his and Nyns son who'll become the next king of the seven towers.

It's worth noting that the marriage of Nynaeve and Lan is not foretold until TGH,Ch43: "A man's ring of heavy gold floated above Nynaeve's head." Even this doesn't foretell marriage & children. Also, the towers around Lan's head are ruined, not restored. So it seems to me premature to have a foretelling of Malkier's restoration this early in tEotW.

Of course it's possible that the prophecy actually refers to Lan's bastard child who likes to build Lego towers. Wouldn't be more bizarre than Sheriam's viewing :)
Tricia Irish
159. Tektonica
This from johntheirishmongrel@66 on the Open Predictions Thread: I thought it pertained to our Berelain/Perrin discussion:

Galad says hi mom, sees Berelain, falls for her immediately, she falls back, stupid Perrin/Faile/Berelain storyline stops but then Faile flirts with Galad and a new stupid Faile/Galad/Berelain storyline begins, takes 3 books and we all tear our hair out!
Matthew Smith
160. blocksmith

Acknowledged it is not in Nyn's character to do so...just thought it would have saved a lot of time. Similar to Travelling instead of travelling.


His accent wasn't great (a touch overdone at times) but his character (background/motivations) was right on and well acted.

Tektonica@159 and JTIM...

NOOOOO! (as I jump of a metaphorical cliff). Truthfully though, it would only be two books, right?
161. laotsekung
Re: 2009 JordanCon Queen's Guard costume - that was great and as you say spot on. I'm at a total loss though regarding the Asha'man - just not what I had in my head (think the coats you see in something like 'The Scarlet Pimpernel' or 'Blackadder the Third') Since when was a Nerhu style jacket one with a high collar? B'ah humbug!
162. itsjustme
Rand didn't intend to give the sul’dam and damane to Elayne. I've seen someone in this list of comments (not going to track by and find the exact one) say he was sending them to the 4 Aes Sedai that had been with Elayne and Nynaeve. That's not it either. Rand never knew about that group. In TPoD, chapter 23, he says that he was going to send them to the "group of sisters that Mat was taking to Caemlyn with Elayne." Remember, at this point, Rand didn't know Mat and company ran off to Ebu Dar. He still thinks the entire Salidar group is heading toward Camelyn. It's not until chapter 11 of WH that Nynaeve tells his Egwene has a huge army marching on Tar Valon, and even then she leave his with the impression that Mat and the Band are that army. So Rand never knew about the smaller group from Ebu Dar. Actually, as of the end of book 12, Rand probably still doesn't know about that trip.
Jennifer B
163. JennB
re Brigitte's complaining

I believe that this is an early symptom of her feelings of loss. Later we learn that she is dealing with major depression because she is losing her memories of Gaidal Cain. She eventually begins drinking, drowning her sorrows to the point where she is continously drunk.

Min's viewing is of Brigitte's past lives where Gaidal Cain was older and her present and future lives where he is much younger. In Brigitte's present life, he is a newborn somewhere while she is already a full grown woman. It will be a while before he is old enough for them to meet and fall in love.
Like birgit@117 said.

Hmmm... I wonder if RJ made a mistake with that quote. Guess we will never know, unless we can get someone on Team Jordan to tell us. :-) And Freelancer@126 has a perfect example.

I think that your interpetation of Min's viewings could be right. If that is it, then the older man in Min's viewing shoud fade as Brigitte loses those memories.
164. Shard
You know for a person who supposedly loves Rand, Elayne constantly thinks very little of him. I mean he did the best he could with Andor to keep it safe. He avenged her Mother by killing Rhavin and kept her enemies from declaring for the throne in her absence. Does he get a thank you? Course not.

Thanks Leigh for pointing out more Elayne mistakes I hadn't notice before. Your right she has no idea about Slayer and wouldn't that have blown her mind if it had been him who had killed the sister or Halima even.

I really try to appreciate and like all the good guy characters but Elayne makes it very hard to do so and because of her attitude in this plotline I love that Brigitte snaps at her. Elayne needs to learn some damn humility and a little caution too.

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