Aug 27 2010 2:19pm

The Wheel of Time Re-read: Winter’s Heart, Part 13

Greetings and yos to alla y’alls, and welcome back to the Wheel of Time Re-read!

Today’s entry covers Chapter 19 of Winter’s Heart, in which Mat basically reenacts bits of Hitchcock movies. Sweet!

Today’s entry is a short one, because my week has continually verged on the insane, in some bad ways including more dental work (did I mention my teeth are fired? BECAUSE THEY ARE), but in one completely and totally rockin’ awesome way, in that as of about 48 hours ago as I write this, your Auntie Leigh became an actual Auntie Leigh, and she is so damn skippy about this that she has begun to refer to herself in the third person. O the Humanity.

(I have a nephew! His name is Remy! And he is adorable! Squee!)

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 that’s what that is, so I will have a toast, and you will have a post!

Chapter 19: Three Women

What Happens
In the common room of the Wandering Woman, Mat notes with interest a high-stakes card game going on, where a “tiny black-haired man” is cleaning up, but decides against trying to join. Unfortunately, Mistress Anan is out, and her daughter Marah doesn’t like Mat at all, ignoring him in favor of yelling at the tavern employees, scolding Caira for failing to keep “Air Captain Yulan’s” cup full; Yulan proves to be the man winning the card game. Mat wonders briefly what an Air Captain is, but dismisses it, telling Marah he’ll wait in the kitchen. Once there, Enid the cook gives him a sly smile.

“So, you found out I was right,” she said, pointing the spoon at him. “You squeezed the wrong melon, and it turned out the melon was a lionfish in disguise and you were just a plump grunter.” Throwing back her head, she cackled with laughter.

Mat forced a grin. Blood and bloody ashes! Everybody really did know! I have to get out of this bloody city, he thought grimly, or I’ll hear them bloody laughing at me the rest of my life!

He now thinks his fears about the hidden stash are foolish, and covers the reason for his visit by telling Enid he came to thank her for her cooking, which is better than anything at the Palace (and he’s not lying). To his surprise, Enid serves him up a gilded fish right there, and Mat can’t resist eating it. As he’s finishing, Setalle returns with another woman in a hooded cloak behind her; Mat catches a glimpse of her face and almost falls over. Setalle clears everyone but Mat out of the kitchen.

“What a surprise,” Joline Maza said, tossing her hood back. Her dark woolen dress, with a deep neckline in the local style, fit loosely and looked worn and frayed. You would never have thought it from her carefree attitude, though. “When Mistress Anan told me she knew a man who might take me with him when he left Ebou Dar, I never guessed it was you.” Pretty and brown-eyed, she had a smile almost as warm as Caira’s. And an ageless face that screamed Aes Sedai. With dozens of Seanchan just the other side of a door guarded by a cook with a spoon.

Joline hangs up her cloak, to Setalle’s irritation; she starts to tell Joline it isn’t safe when there is a commotion outside the door, Enid trying to block someone with a Seanchan accent from entering. Mat grabs Joline and puts her on his lap and pretends to be kissing her; Joline is about to fight him when she registers what is happening, and plays along, terrified. A heavyset so’jhin with a beard (oddly) enters, pushing Enid aside; he is followed by a Seanchan woman with hair cut in the manner of lesser nobility. In an Illianer accent, the so’jhin announces Captain of the Green Lady Egeanin Tamarath to Setalle, and demands her best rooms.

Mat gave a start when the man spoke, and Joline, perhaps thinking someone was coming toward them, moaned against his mouth in fear. Her eyes shone with unshed tears, and she trembled in his arms. The Lady Egeanin Tamarath glanced at the bench when Joline moaned, then grimaced in disgust and turned so she could avoid seeing the pair. It was the man who intrigued Mat, though. How in the Light did an Illianer come to be so’jhin? And the fellow looked familiar, somehow. Likely another of those thousands of long-dead faces he could not help recalling.

Unimpressed, Setalle tells him calmly that her two best rooms are occupied by Captain of the Air Lord Abaldar Yulan and Banner-General Furyk Karede of the Deathwatch Guards, respectively, and Egeanin is welcome to try kicking them out herself if she wants. Mat expects Egeanin to explode, but Egeanin is dryly amused by Setalle’s “nerve.” Egeanin frowns at Mat and Joline, though, and hopes Setalle doesn’t let that sort of thing go on a lot, and Setalle assures her she will never “see the like again” here. The so’jhin is frowning at them too, until Egeanin drags him out, which Mat finds a bit rich considering what he’s heard about Illianers. Everyone, even Setalle, is shaken once they are gone; Mat tries to stand Joline up, but she clings to him, sobbing; Setalle makes him carry Joline down to the cellar, which he might have enjoyed if it weren’t for his leg. Mat asks Setalle if she makes a habit of rescuing Aes Sedai.

“I heard whispers there was a sister still in the city,” Mistress Anan replied, “and I managed to find her before the Seanchan did. I couldn’t leave a sister to them.” She glared back over her shoulder, daring him to say different. He wanted to, but he could not make the words come. He supposed he would have helped anyone get away from the Seanchan, if he could, and he owed a debt to Joline Maza.

Mat puts a still-sniffly Joline down, and Setalle comments that her nerve is broken after being on the run from the Seanchan for days. Mat tells Joline he will help her if he can, though he’s not at all sure how he’s going to do that, and remarks that Teslyn wasn’t as lucky as she. Joline spits back that she’s glad Teslyn was caught, since Joline is sure that Teslyn had drugged her so she could not escape until it was too late to get out of the city. Mat is rather shocked at her viciousness (Setalle looks like she wants to slap her), but hurriedly repeats that he will help her, since he is in debt to her.

A tiny frown wrinkled Joline’s brow. “In debt?”

“The note asking me to warn Nynaeve and Elayne,” he said slowly. He licked his lips and added, “The one you left on my pillow.”

She flicked a hand dismissively, but her eyes, focused on his face, never blinked. “All debts between us are settled the day you help me get outside the city walls, Master Cauthon,” she said, in tones as regal as a queen on her throne.

Mat swallowed hard. The note had been stuck into his coat pocket somehow, not left on his pillow. And that meant he was mistaken about who he owed the debt to.

Feeling sick, he leaves soon after without calling Joline on the lie-by-omission and goes back to the Palace. After dithering a bit in Tylin’s rooms, he grows disgusted with himself and quickly sneaks up to the “attic” level of the Palace, which has been partitioned into tiny wooden rooms, and starts opening doors. The first damane he sees is a former Windfinder, who looks at him first with fear and then hope.

He closed the door without saying a word. I can’t save all of them, he thought harshly. I can’t! Light, but he hated this.

He finally locates Teslyn’s cell and slips inside; Teslyn only stares at him, and Mat asks why she put a note in his pocket. Teslyn answers that Elaida wants Elayne and Nynaeve, and Teslyn wished to “inconvenience” her, even dosing Joline with forkroot to keep her from interfering, and look what it got her. Mat sighs, and tries to convince himself that Teslyn’s petty motive for the note clears him of any debt to her, but fails. He tells her he will try to help her escape; calmly, she points out that no woman who can channel can get past the city gates. Mat mutters that he’ll figure out something.

“You do be serious,” she whispered, so low he nearly did not hear. “I did think you only did come to taunt me.” Slowly she sat, swinging her feet down to the floor. Her eyes latched on to his intently, and her voice took on a low urgency. “Do I want to escape? When I do something that does please them, the sul’dam do give me sweets. I do find myself looking forward to those rewards.” Breathy horror crept into her voice. “Not for liking of sweets, but because I have pleased the sul’dam.” A single tear trickled from her eye. She inhaled deeply. “If you do help me escape, I will do anything you ask of me that does not encompass treason to the White—” Her teeth snapped shut, and she sat up straight, staring right through him. Abruptly, she nodded to herself. “Help me escape, and I will do anything you ask of me,” she said.

Mat tells her he’ll do what he can, and Teslyn tells him there is another Aes Sedai they must take, Edesina Azzedin. Mat says he thought there were three or four former Aes Sedai among the damane, but Teslyn tells him that Guisin and Mylen (whom Teslyn knew as “Sheraine Caminelle,”, but she won’t answer to that anymore) are “changed,” and would betray them; Edesina, though, is still herself, and Teslyn won’t leave her even if she is a rebel. Mat tries to protest, but Teslyn shoos him out, with a comment that maybe he should try dressing less flamboyantly. He stalks out, muttering about Aes Sedai, and runs straight into Tuon. She tells him coldly that damane kennels are forbidden to men; thinking fast, Mat tells her he was trying to bring a pastry to a Windfinder who did him a favor once.

“I didn’t see her, though. I suppose she wasn’t caught when…” He trailed off, staring. The stern judicial mask the girl always wore for a face had melted into a smile. She really was beautiful.

“That is very kind of you,” she said. “It’s good to know you are kind to damane. But you must be careful. There are men who actually take damane to their beds.” Her full mouth twisted in disgust. “You would not want anyone to think you are perverted.” That severe expression settled on her face again. All prisoners would be executed immediately.

“Thank you for the warning, High Lady,” he said, a little unsteadily. What kind of man wanted to bed a woman who was on a leash?

She leaves, and Mat concerns himself with the now three Aes Sedai who are all expecting “Mat bloody Cauthon” to save them, and how they might start talking if he takes too long about it. He thinks he could plan a battle in his sleep, but this is different, and decides to track down Thom and Juilin.

Part of the problem with doing such a close reading as I have been doing with this series is that things tend to get magnified beyond what they might normally have done on a more casual perusal.

By which I mean, I know that I found the damane thing repugnant before, but this recap has brought my revulsion for the concept to a whole new level. Probably because by definition, I can’t just zoom by the stuff that pisses me off and get to something I like better, which has always been my standard method of rereading WOT (or rereading anything, for that matter). But I can’t do that here; no, now I have to think about it, and (horrors!) come up with reasonably intelligent things to say about it.

Yes, my life is such a vale of tears, I know. But still: sometimes that’s awesome, and sometimes it makes me want to beat people up for being such a shitty species, even fictionally. Because while sul’dam and damane are happily Not Real, the historical (and sometimes not so historical) institutions upon which they are based are way, way too real. And that sucks, in a word.

(Kennels. Jesus.)

“Nausea-inducing” is not even in it, you guys. Especially with Tuon’s casual (and all-too-believable) mention of some of the more heinous abuses available to visit upon a population of totally helpless and exclusively female slaves who are regarded as being subhuman at best. Granted, not that being male would necessarily stop that from happening either, but the single-genderedness of the situation unavoidably adds that special something to the whole stinking stew. The fun, will it ever stop?

Ugh. Ugh ugh ugh.

Given all that, I wonder if I’m being too harsh or cynical in kind of raising my eyebrow at Mat’s mental commentary on Tuon’s remark. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all kinds of pleased my favorite character finds the idea repellent, but with umpty-thousand memories packing his head, the vast majority of which are from soldiers in time of war, let’s just say I find his total astonishment at the very notion a little… disingenuous. And not on the character’s part, so much as on Jordan’s. It was just a little too “HEY, HERO HERE, NOT DISGUSTING PERV AT ALL” neon-sign-y for me, like, thanks, I knew that already.

I dunno, I just find it hard to believe that I could be more jaded than Mr. Military over there about the realities of being a female POW (or equivalent). But then again, I guess none of his memories ever had to think about that sort of thing. Lucky them.


All that being said, other than the stomach-turning damane business I generally liked this chapter, mainly because of how much it put the lie to Mat’s continual blathering that he’s no bloody hero. Because really, if he isn’t one, who the hell is? Exactly!

And, the whole vaguely WWII/Nazi occupation/underground resistance sneakiness flavor of this chapter helps with the liking too. The “fake makeout” scene was highly amusing to me just because it proves (in my opinion, anyway) that some clichés refuse to die for good reasons instead of bad. I think this gag is in, like, every spy story ever, and yet, it still works. Heh. If it ain’t broke…

Teslyn and Joline continue to throw the universe out of whack by being an (relatively) awesome Red and (comparatively) sucky Green, respectively. (Adverbs are fun!)

Though I did have a certain amount of sympathy for Joline’s freakout, that was rather tempered by the fact that she is, well, a sulky twit of the type just born to cause trouble. A sulky phony twit, to boot, though perhaps I don’t entirely blame her for doing what she thought she needed to to keep her incipient rescuer on the hook, but still.

Normally I would cut her more slack considering she’s basically the Ebou Dar equivalent of Anne Frank right now, but she was a sulky twit long before that, too, so, well. Like Setalle, I can feel for her even while wanting to smack her. That’s because I can multitask.

For obvious reasons, though, I felt for Teslyn a hell of a lot more. I think I made this observation back during Egwene’s (mercifully brief) stint as a damane, but there’s a certain amount of disadvantage involved in tending to viscerally identify with characters’ situations. Panic sums it up, I think.

It’s interesting, by the way, that Setalle obviously so implicitly trusts Mat. I mean, yes, she trusted him before, but hiding an Aes Sedai from the Seanchan? That is major. Nazi occupation shit, etc., as I said. And yet, she didn’t even hesitate to bring Mat in on it. Says something, don’t it?

Tuon: It’s tempting to read more into her reaction to Mat’s lie than may be really there. On the obvious level, there is her pleasure that her future husband isn’t a perverted rapist, which, you know, totally understandable, that, but perhaps also she might feel more of a subliminal connection to the imprisoned channelers than she might admit to herself, possibly? Or, not. I don’t know. I am, possibly, not making a lot of sense here.

Egeanin and Domon: We’ll talk about them more in upcoming chapters, but I did want to note that I immediately guessed (and was immediately indignant about) who Egeanin’s so’jhin was even before we found out for sure, but somehow missed that Domon had obviously recognized Mat here. I are the most smartest, sometimes.

Also of minor note is the fleeting appearance of Air Captain Yulan in this chapter, of whom we are going to hear a lot more from down the line, at least in an indirect, getting-his-ass-kicked way. Hooray!

And that’s a wrap, y’all! I hope you have a fabulous weekend; mine will be spent telephonically kissing babies, so I win! See you Tuesday!

Chin Bawambi
1. bawambi
long time listener first time caller

#1 woohoo

EDIT: for congrats to Leigh
Marcus W
2. toryx
Congratulations on the nephew, Leigh! I became an uncle for the first time last November, and it is pretty cool. Especially since you get to go home after you're done oohing and aahing over him.
Rob Munnelly
4. RobMRobM
Leigh - congrats on little Remy. Feel free to spoil the bejeezus out of him, Aunt's prerogative.

"Skippy" - I recall reading a book over the past two years where that was the favorite expression of one of the female protagonists. Please tell me you got this from that book and relieve me of my mental misery trying futilely to remember it.

Feel free to delete both adverbs before Teslyn and Joline respectively. That is all.

Remember, La Resistance was against Canada not Nazi Germany. Mat just needs to remember to offer punch and pie before the meetings. Edit - actually trying to save Canadians against US oppression ("Blame Canada. All that hockey hullabaloo and that b*tch Anne Murray too....")

Tuon - you're reading too much into it at this point in the story. She's very protective of her damane and takes a close personal interest in their welfare. Idea that she might be in a kennel someday hasn't once passed her mind, IMO.

Setalle - is cool, that is all.

Mat - interesting to see him recognize the Tuon actually is beautiful - is this the first time? And I always loved the follow up "All prisoners would be executed immediately." Priceless comedy.

Mike McCaffrey
5. earlgrey
"yet, she didn’t even hesitate to bring Mat in on it. Says something, don’t it?"

She said it once before, just prior to taking E and N to the Kin. Something like "he'll give you his last copper, but you can get him in all sorts of trouble"
James Hogan
6. Sonofthunder
I always liked this chapter. And no, I'm not a horrible person(mostly), but I just love seeing Mat put the lie to his constant denials of heroism. He just does what he has to. And the fact that his "what he has to" bar is set so much higher than many people's, is part of why Mat is one of my favorite characters.

The fake make-out scene with Joline is a classic. I think Mat does more crazy, goat-killing antics with Joline than any other man has ever done to any Aes Sedai, most likely!! I do think Joline's sort of annoying(as she will continue to be once they're all with the circus, and onward), but I still couldn't leave her to the Seanchan.

I think the most powerful part of this chapter was the above-quoted oath of Teslyn's, to do anything if Mat would just rescue her. Her fear of actually *wanting* to please the Seanchan, of her will being molded to theirs, is starkly obvious, and chilling to my soul. Well done, RJ.
Daniel Smith
7. Smittyphi
Yay, new post.

I forgot about Tuon's comments here. Dropped my liking for her slightly. Kennels? Nauseating indeed. For such a "progressive" society trying to keep the peace by allowing the the queen her thrown but subject to the Seanchan, treating people like dogs is horrible.

Congrats on being a real Aunt now. Nieces and nephews are so fun, you can give them back whenever you want! :-P
8. alreadymadwithnephews
Congratulations on the nephew. I'm afraid I already have quite a few. One of them has already mustered enough gall to try punching me.

Also.. anybody noticed Teslyn's total about-face?
She would have stopped short at betraying the White Tower. And she actually changed her mind. Knowing how Aes Sedai oaths work, she's well and truly Mat's now. And she'll betray the White Tower if he tells her to.
Heidi Byrd
9. sweetlilflower
Perhaps Teslyn will be involved in getting the Horn out?
Birgit F
10. birgit
The Pattern pulls Mat towards the encounter with Joline. He suddenly feels an urge to check on his money, then he is delayed in the kitchen when the cook offers him a fish meant for another guest. He decides to stay and eat until Setalle and Joline come in. Then Domon and Egeanin come in, adding more members of the escape party.
Lucas Vollmer
11. aspeo
Congratulations on becoming an aunt Leigh! I have a 2 year old niece myself, and I'm still not used to it! lol

I thought this was a pretty good chapter. I really enjoyed Mat thinking quickly enough to do the fake makeout with Jolene. It certainly worked effectively enough to throw off suspicions about any channelers being around, even though Domon was able to recognize Mat.

I think that it's interesting that what makes Mat see Tuon as being beautiful is her smile. I don't really know what that says good or bad for him, but I like it anyways.

And Mat is so totally a hero because of his promising to get the AS to freedom. Even if he doesn't want to admit it, he knows that his actions are heroic. I wonder how he feels about that? ;p

I think that given the way Teslyn feels about Elaida, she probably does feel more loyalty towards Mat after he rescues her from slavery.
TW Grace
12. TWGrace

Also.. anybody noticed Teslyn's total about-face?
She would have stopped short at betraying the White Tower. And she actually changed her mind. Knowing how Aes Sedai oaths work, she's well and truly Mat's now. And she'll betray the White Tower if he tells her to.

I always read that as the oaths kicking in, not an about face.

That she couldnt say the lie that she would do anything "short of the treason against the White Tower", when in her "heart of hearts" she knew she would do ANYTHING.
Sébastien Chaillous
13. Demiandre
It id interesting to note that Teslyn is willing to betray the White Tower to help Mat. That's gigantic. One of the few time we see the First Oath way of preventing lies. And it is a good way/sentence to show it.

I don't remember if it is first mentioned in this chapter, but the title makes me think of Mat's saying : "one pretty woman means fun at the dance, two pretty women means trouble in the house. Three pretty women means run for the hills".

Congratulation for your nephew! Let's hope he will not start to channel at 18 and bring you near the chopping block by saying harsh word to people you shouldn't :p
Barry T
14. blindillusion
All prisoners would be executed immediately.

Perhaps one of my favorite descriptions in the whole series. It’s not too surprising it comes from my favorite character’s thoughts, is it?

- Leigh, congrats on the nephew. And you’re right, of course. Babies are amazing.

Teslyn – I’m very interested to see her in ToM. She’s one of few Aes Sedai that’s likeable…and I really what a more complete explanation as to why she’s disappointed in Mat in tGS.

Joline – Bleh. Hope she gets parked in Caemlyn…forever.
Tricia Irish
15. Tektonica
Leigh: Congratulations! Just think of all the fun outings you and little Remy will have! (yeah for raising boys!) Thanks for doing a post in the middle of your familial joy.

I didn't like Teslyn until this chapter. Her vow to Mat was awesome and I so felt for her admission that she was beginning to welcome her "praise" from her sul'dam. And yay Mat for giving her a life-raft to hold onto her sense of self!

The kennels and Tuon both made me ill here, for the same reasons I can't read books about the Afgani women's plight. I feel sick and violent at the same time. It makes me want to run out the door and DO something. But what???

I love that Mat is such a matter of fact Hero. He just does what needs to be done. Period. And he doesn't even see it.

Setalle = Good Person with good judgement.
Tom Burton
16. Conky
“If you do help me escape, I will do anything you ask of me that does not encompass treason to the White—”

I always thought that quote was a mistake by Jordan. My brain finished the quote as "treason to the White ". I'd always scratch my head and think, "But Teslyn is Red. I guess Jordan made a mistake." Thanks for finally correcting this, Leigh. She was going to say White Tower, not Ajah. Got it!
Bonnie Andrews
17. misfortuona
Congratulations on the new nephew Leigh.
Being an Aunt is a wonderful thing. I am one 16 times over and great aunt to 18, and I can tell you they've filled my life with many laughs and tears. Enjoy.

Mat is absolutly the hero he denies, and also realistic enough to realize that he can't save them all. I just want to hug him.


Waves and hugs to all
Rob Munnelly
18. RobMRobM
Thank goodness for the internet. "Skippy" is a frequently used adjective in Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum books, which I read last Spring. Whew! No need to worry about Alzheimer's until next year.....

Jay Dauro
19. J.Dauro

Spoil him and give him back to his parents. It's a wonderful thing. Congratulations.

Love Mat's reactions here. Makes sure he can tell that Joline is not telling the "truth", then immediately goes to find Teslyn. Not a "hero" (at least in his own mind), but will do whatever it takes to honor his debts. Gotta love him.

Uncle Jay (to more than I can count.)
20. pro_star
Leah, congrats!!!

Now, back to lunch...
Rob Munnelly
21. RobMRobM
One quick question: who are the three women of the chapter title? The three AS? Setalle, Egeanin, Tuon? Marah, Caira, Enid? Some combination of the nine?
22. Tzwolf
I find it amusing that Mat finds taking part as the dominate in a bondage situation disgusting yet he has been forced into being the submissive by a knife wielding Queen.
23. AndrewB
Leigh, congatulations on the birth of your nephew. Hope he and his mom are healthy and happy.

Jeff Soules
24. DeepThought
First off -- wow, Tor made the comment box some WYSIWYG crap. Boo. Where's the "off" button?

More relevantly, I do love how well-observed Jordan's viewpoint on damane slavery is--recognizing that the horrifying part is finding yourself buying in to the power structure, accepting the role in which you're cast. I like that a lot.
I'm not really surprised Domon recognized Mat. He wasn't exactly the most social or even dare I say stable or sane fellow during their previous aquaintance, and that sort of first impression makes you remember someone.

Re: Mat's reaction of "who wants to bed a woman on a leash" -- yeah, it's heavy-handed on Jordan's part, but it's also consistent with Mat's character throughout. He's a flirt, not a predator; he wants to be with women who encourage his advances, because they can engage in Mutually Enjoyable Activities and because he likes the game of it all. (And in Jordan's world, it's supposed to be a game that's open to both parties much moreso than in our own, as I think he's on record as saying). Ultimately he's not looking for, er, somewhere to put his ashandarei, but rather for the validation and the thrill of being found attractive and being engaged in the game. There's no way to get the rush of being desired if you're forcing yourself on someone. Which is all just to say that I think it's a consistent depiction of his character, so I don't disapprove of it here, even if Jordan's world has idealized away many of the worst parts of our own in this respect.
Jennifer B
25. JennB
Yay! I remember being so excited that Mat was finally going to escape Ebou Dar. I kept thinking "You have to rescue the Windfinders and you know it."
Barry T
26. blindillusion
Huh? Well, that's interesting..
27. Jelsel
thnx again Leigh!!!!

some observations about the kennels;

yes, the whole slavery thing is ofcourse abhorrent to our enlightend western standards but leashing channelers is a quite logical thing to do from the historical Seanchan perspective.

Seeing their major wars in the past with wild channelers, who are not barred by anything resembling the 3 oaths, i'd probably do the same...
Tricia Irish
28. Tektonica
Does this mean that we can easily bold and strike through and underline and all this cool stuff at once!

Oh, we could get very expressive on here now! Oh boy!
29. msjanic
Congratulations on being an actual Auntie!
30. Rand Al'Todd

Now we know the name of Gaidal Cain in this turn of the wheel.

We'll have to ask Birgitte to come baby sit!!!

Heads for bunker! Hopes Suffa has it properly stocked for a long stay!

Seriously, Congrats to Auntie Leigh and best wishes to the wee one (and the new Mommie) !!!
Karen Fox
31. thepupxpert
Finally getting caught up after some grueling weeks at work. Don't get me wrong, I'm thankful I have a job, but I have been missing my WOT fix daily read-through!

Hey this is great!

{edit for excessive spaces}
32. Freelancer
Auntie Leigh,

Babiez R0xx0rz!!!!1!!11!!

Especially the ones that you can spoil and then walk away from. Here's hoping Remy continues to peg the Adorable Meter for a long time to come.

On the chapter at hand...

No way Tuon is expressing even deeply submerged empathy for her damane based on her saidar affinity. This reaction is entirely about relief that her future Prince of the Ravens isn't an abusive slug. (apologies to slugs who aren't as low as sexual predators)

Joline: I have sympathy for anyone facing this situation, and I don't factor in their prior attitudes, because people are people. None deserve less freedom than others unless they are convicted criminals. Period.

Teslyn: Interesting that she is so far gone she will throw everything which formerly had her alliegance under the bus, in favor of loyalty to her rescuer. I cannot judge her for this, it's very understandable, and couldn't have been easy for her to do. Also, clearly Mat feels as I state above regarding Joline. He went after Teslyn from a sense of quid-pro-quo for the note. After learning that her reasons for the note were far from magnanimous, virtually self-serving, he still couldn't walk away. Surface of tin, heart of gold. That's Mat.


Aww, ya beat me to the punch. I wanted to point out that Mat is probably the only person on the planet to have both snuggled and spanked an Aes Sedai without prelude nor permission, and it was the same Sister in both cases. The twists, they burn!

Ok, now I will, with great trepidation, approach the subject of human slavery vis-a-vis the Seanchan. The rationale is provided in TSR chapter 38, Hidden Faces, that thought which permits the Seanchan to believe they aren't the horrible people that Leigh believes they are. Egeanin has been forced to confront the fact that the a'dam can control Bethamin, a runaway sul'dam. In her internal POV, she recites what everyone in Seanchan is taught; females who have the spark in them to channel are animals, not people. They are related to those who Broke the World, and who would force their rule upon everyone else if left free. ~ If this is how you are raised, and no questions to the contrary allowed, it doesn't make you horrible for believing it. Here, we have in Egeanin the first example of one who has to consider that there isn't complete truth in those teachings, and she turns from them, being unable to deliver Bethamin back to those who would probably kill both of them for what they know, what must now be kept hidden. ~ And one must also ask how much influence Ishamael might have had on this over the years. Given how he poisoned Hawkwing against Aes Sedai, it seems reasonable to think he followed Luthair's descendents across the ocean and took a hand in troubling channelers there as well.

[i]Edit to add[i]: Yay for new edit window! Also, what's with the double paragraph spacing?!? I will now attempt to adjust... and, it seems I cannot. I guess we get to scroll just a little bit more...
Jonathan Levy
33. JonathanLevy

Also.. anybody noticed Teslyn's total about-face?I always read that as the oaths kicking in, not an about face.

Me too. I think we can also conclude she's not Black :)


All prisoners would be executed immediately.

One of my favorites as well!
34. AndrewB
This chapter shows demonstrates that Mat is the only truly heroic character out of Rand, Perrin and Mat. By heroic, I mean that he will do whatever it takes to help somebody in need, even if it means risking his life to do so. Since Mat was cured of his taint to the dagger he has done that. First, he proceeds to Tear after Egwene, Nyneve and Elaye after he learns that Lord Gaebril means to kill them. Second, after the Black Ajah have taken the three girls, he vows that he will get them out of a place (the Stone of Tear) that no army has ever captured (at least until later that night). The third example is trying to get the Tear and Cairhien armies out of the path of the incoming Aiel in TFoH. It would of been easier for Mat to ignore these armies and wait for them to get slaughtered. While it was true that he initially helped them as a means to make it easier for him to get away from Rand, he ultimately stayed with the armies for the duration of the battle. He did not leave after the first encounter with the Aiel.

Rand, on the other hand, will not let anything or anyone get in his way of preparing for the Last Battle. See his willingness to sacrifice Lan in TGS as an example. In this sense, Rand acts as the detached leader who believes that the ends justifies the means. Over the course of the series, Rand has become so hard (albeit by choice), that he has alomst become inhuman. Despite Mat's knowledge that he will loose men in battle, it still upsets him. See his reaction in KoD after defeating the Seanchan.

(Note: I am not trying to argue that Rand does not have a valid reason for acting emotionless. It is his way to handle the enormity of the obligation he has. Rand's protection of women, the last vestige of compassion he had, was stripped from him by Semirhage.)

Perrin, likewise does not act for the greater good. His actions in the rescue of Faile demonstrated this. Perrin even acknowledges that his single focus may have not been the most proactive step he could have taken. He also acknowledged that the world could burn so long as Faile was rescued. Perrin also adopted this attitude after returning to Cairhien in ACoS. His heroic nature (as I define the word) has not been seen since TSR. In that novel, he would do whatever it took to end the Trolloc presence, even turning himself over to the Whitecloacks.

Thanks for reading my musings.

Thomas Keith
35. insectoid
Congrats on the new nephew, Leigh! :D

The fake makeout scene with Joline is classic, clichéd as it is. And the scene with Teslyn makes me grumble about the Seanchan a lot more. (Kennels. Eurgh.)

And Setalle is awesome, trusting Mat like that. Also: Hi, Domon and Egeanin! About time you showed up Long time no see!Also, the line:

That severe expression settled on her face again. All prisoners would be executed immediately.

always makes me crack up.

DeepThought @24: I agree wholeheartedly with your first sentence. What's the deal, Tor? Does this mean I can't copy-and-paste anymore?? (Although, on the upside, it means we can use strikethrough again!)

Okay, so I'm wrong—the WYSIWYG comment box automatically translates bbCode! Sweet. But the spacing bug needs to be fixed, definitely. (Quick—someone go drop a line to Torie! Okay, so I already did...)

Tek @28/Pupxpert @31: :D


Karen Jacobs
36. KJacobs
Congratulations Leigh! Being an Auntie is the BEST . . . and when they grow up and have kids of their own, it is still just as much fun. (Yes, as old as it makes me feel, I can speak from experience there!) Remy is a great name too - Love it!
Birgit F
37. birgit
One quick question: who are the three women of the chapter title?

He had an Aes Sedai hiding in the cellar of The Wandering Woman and two wearing damane leashes who all expected Mat bloody Cauthon to save their necks. He was sure Teslyn would inform Edesina all about it as soon as possible. Three women who might start getting impatient if he failed to waft them to safety soon enough.

38. Freelancer
amw @8 & Jonathan Levy @33

The point of what Teslyn is saying to Mat is to prove to him how strongly she wants out of there. It had been her nature for many long years to place her loyalty to the White Tower above all else. But now, for her to include that condition in her statement to Mat would, however slightly, dilute it. She suddenly won't permit herself to do so. She wants her appreciation for the opportunity to be rescued to have no conditions placed upon it. Also, her loyalty to the Tower isn't currently unquestionable, with her desire to "inconvenience" Elaida. This isn't an oath kicking in, it's Teslyn choosing where her trust lies, and at the moment, it's with the only person who is willing and able to free her from the a'dam.
Jeff Soules
39. DeepThought
@38 Freelancer:
This isn't an oath kicking in, it's Teslyn choosing where her trust lies

Agreed. It can't be the Oath Rod, because if she's willing to do anything, she must be willing to do anything that doesn't betray the Tower. Stating a subset of what you're willing to do is not a lie. If I would do anything if you'd only clean the bathroom, it is not a *lie* to say "I will eat this chocolate cake if you clean the bathroom." Of course offering more in the way of sacrifice might help my bargaining position, but I certainly *would* eat the cake if that was the price!

The Oath binds AS away from positive lies, but permits negative ones. In a sense this is parallel to the action-through-passivity required to channel saidar -- which might be kind of interesting, if you think about it. Anyway, the AS who invented the Oaths were intimately familiar with saidar, and worded this Oath very carefully as a result, knowing that you don't have to be active to do anything you want as long as you're clever.
Thomas Keith
40. insectoid
It seems the more times I edit that comment ^^ the worse the paragraph spacing gets. Curse you, AquaScum!

James Jones
41. jamesedjones
Loving the new comment box. Much fun!

Alright, I'm still snickering over Insectoid's post at 35. Funnier than Leigh's commentary. :) Of course, Leigh's commentary was about analysis of Mat's awesomeness and horror at the plight of the damanes (How she manages some funny from that, even with it being a Mat chapter, I don't know. But she's awesome.)

Nephews are awesome, too. My brother's kids look just like him. And they are a ton of fun (much more so than my brother was at that age).

Have I mentioned how much I love this new comment box? Thanks Tor Management Services! :D

Edit: Yay! Spaces are fixed!
42. MasterAlThor
We have a new comment box??? I am loving it, thanks Tor!!!!!!


Congrats on Remy. You should just call him Gambit. New additions to the fam are totally awesome.

Now I am going to have to come up with more comments just to play with the new box...err stuff.

Tess Laird
43. thewindrose
What the helloooo. I am not open to changes(just kidding):) Maybe we will get emoticons soon?

Joline, another one of those wonderful greens. I like how she looks at Mat straight in the eyes and says that all debts are paid when he gets her out o Ebou Dar. So why is she still with him?? If I were Mat, I would have her and her warders on some horses after they were on the road - bye byee!

So three women. Could be the three Aes Sedai. Or Setalle, Egeanin and Tuon.

Have fun with the little one Leigh!

44. AndrewB
In honor of MasterAlThor, this post is just to allow me to play with the new comment box.

So now I can type like this. Way awful cool.

The only problem is that when you skip a space while typing something in the new comment text box, it appears in the positing as double spaced (or at least it did back when I posted my comment @34.

Does somebody know who to contact at to see if this problem can be fixed? Much thanks.
edit: apparently, the skipping problem still exists. Oh well, I will just have to train myself not skip a space when I want to begin a new paragraph
45. wot_philosopher
First: congratulations on becoming an aunt! Second: I'm not sure that Mat is being deliberately obtuse about the sexual abuse of POWs from military history. He's simply a morally good person, and as such that doesn't enter into his mind. His reaction is a visceral disgust with the idea, not a claim that he never knew anyone in his memories who did so.
Finally, a maintenance-type-note: on the main Reread page, there's still no link from Winter's Heart at the top to the Winter's Heart re-read post list. My poor scroll finger would be very grateful for a hyperlink. ;)
diane heath
46. jadelollipop
Aww, ya beat me to the punch. I wanted to point out that Mat is probably
the only person on the planet to have both snuggled and spanked an Aes
Sedai without prelude nor permission, and it was the same Sister in both

cases. The twists, they burn!

Which is why Joline wants Matt as a Warder :)

Rob Munnelly
47. RobMRobM
Just had the thought - is Remy named after the Dennis Quaid character in the Big Easy? Has that famous dialogue: Ellen Barkin playing the DA: "I've never had much luck in love." Quaid playing Remy: "Your luck is about to change." LOL. Thank goodness the kid isn't named after Lestat, star of a really bad New Orleans-oriented movie.

Three women - as you can tell from my earlier post, I believe Harriet was playing with us with several three women sets. (Note that I said "sets", not "sex". Keep it clean, guys).
Tricia Irish
48. Tektonica
RobM@47: One of my All Time Favorite Movies!!
Thomas Keith
49. insectoid
AndrewB @44: I sent Torie a shout, but if anyone would like to take the time to shoot her a quick email, that would probably be seen sooner...

Sean Arthur
50. wsean
Congrats, Leigh! My niece just turned 1. :) Make sure to spoil, spoil, spoil!
51. alreadymadwiththreewomen
This is crazy. I like my windows windowed, but the comments box stays at the same crazy width.

HMM... Yes, I believe it was multiple sets of three women.
Three Aes Sedai women
Three Seanchan women(the ones he brought out of Ebou Dar, Egeanin, Tuon and Selucia)
Three women in Setalle Anan's inn(Enid, Marah and Setalle Anan herself)
Jennifer B
52. JennB
AndrewB @ 34

You have a good point. I believe that since Mat hit rock bottom so early in the series we get to see him emerge as a true hero first. Hopefully now that the other two have hit their low spots, they will have their time to shine as well.
John Massey
53. subwoofer
What kinda crap upgrade is this? Soooo, what's the plan here, we post like a bunch of doofs and wait for the first service pack?

I see we are taking notes from Microsoft.

Congrats to Insectoid for his longest post ever:P

Speaking of upgrades and congrats-Hey Leigh-s'up? When the kid is a little older, get him wired on kool aid while baby sitting then send him home to mom and dad. They'll love you for it... not that I am speaking from experience or anything;)

WoT- Mat is bags of awesome here. Him kissing whatsherpickle- do I need to show "Finkle is Einhorn" again? Dunno if they had mouth wash back then, but maybe another fish? This kinda reminds me of the situation in Tear where Mat saves a couple girls' bacon and they give him grief for it. This is the begining of a long trip down Misery Road for the Matster. Go for the bourbon buddy, if it doesn't help, at least the pain is less aggrivating.

Irene Gallo
54. Irene
Hi, guys. I'm taking notes on the WYSIWYG editor -- we'll start fixing.
diane heath
55. jadelollipop
Leigh congratulations on the new nephew. My newest grandson is just one month old. My nephews are in college
Heidi Byrd
56. sweetlilflower
@Andrew #34

Perrin, likewise does not act for the greater good...

Well, I hate to quibble with you on a small detail, but Mat is not really acting for the greater good. In fact, the only one of the three who continually acts towards the "greater good" is Rand, in that (almost) everything he does is aimed towards the LB. Mat puts himself in danger to settle a personal debt, a promise, or a wager. I think it his attention to each individual's rights and humanity that make him such a likeable character. Mat actually cares about people and tries to help others, even if it hurts him. He knows he is integral to the LB, and yet he keeps putting himself in harms way to help different people. If he were really interested in the greater good, he never would have wanted to leave Rand's side. The "greater good" is sort of like religion, it is an idea that has been used to perpetrate horrible crimes against individuals. (Note: I am not saying that all religions are horrible or anything like that. I am only saying that there are some people who will do whatever it takes to get what they want and they will use any tool to achieve it. In the past, religion was often the tool used to cow or inflame the masses.)

I think part of why Rand has become so cold and hard is because he has stopped seeing people as people. Hopefully, now that he has realized that the relationships we have with each other are what make us worthy, he will begin to "see the trees instead of the forest".

Also, congrats to Leigh on becoming an Auntie! And, sorry about the teeth... perhaps you should just get them all pulled and get some dentures :) :) :)
Ron Garrison
57. Man-0-Manetheran
New chapter. New textbox. Now when the guys think about each other we can refer to the Technicolor Swirlies in kind! Wheeeeeee.

OK, not so wheeeeee. You should have seen how cool Technicolor Swirlies looked before I hit "post."
Rob Trotter
58. shadar
Granted, not that being male would necessarily stop that from happening either, but the single-genderedness of the situation unavoidably adds that special something to the whole stinking stew.
Just a quick point: The males get killed instantly.

Leigh - I think your auntieness is making you slip. (Also 57 comments and no-one picked this up):

Also of minor note is the fleeting appearance of Air Captain Yulan in this chapter, of whom we are going to hear a lot more from down the line, at least in an indirect, getting-his-ass-kicked way.

I think you are thinking of General Turan. Who was well and truly kicked by Ituralde. Air Captain Yulan on the other hand -- led the raid against the White Tower. And while Eggy Girl blew up a bunch of raken-kind -- the Seanchan still see that as a success.
Thomas Keith
59. insectoid
So, what'd I miss? ;)

Sub @53:

Congrats to Insectoid for his longest post ever:P

::poke:: By the way, I saw a couple thousand Woofs at the ballgame tonight. And I thought, "Sub-woofs and Super-woofs!"

Irene @54: Thanks Irene!! I did notice that my comment @35 mysteriously went back to normal. Sorry Sub:)

Man-0 @57: I had noticed that text coloring wasn't behaving, either. Not as big a deal as the spaces, but still.

Thomas Keith
60. insectoid
Oh, and copy-paste (among other things) doesn't work properly in Google Chrome. (I get a bunch of "divs" and most of the carriage returns go poof. Works ok in IE8. Spacing around block quotes is kind of loopy too. ::waves at Irene::

Jonathan Levy
61. JonathanLevy

It can't be the Oath Rod, because if she's willing to do anything, she must be willing to do anything that doesn't betray the Tower. Stating a subset of what you're willing to do is not a lie.

Logically speaking, your argument is correct. However, it hinges on the assumption that Teslyn deliberately chose to specify a subset of what she was willing to do. In that case, she would not be speaking a word that is not true.

However, if Teslyn is attempting to specify the entire set of things she would be willing to do, then specifying a smaller subset would constitute a lie.

As always with the first oath, it depends on the state of mind of the speaker.

In this case, Teslyn is trying to convince Mat how desperate she is. And she is desperate. In this context, I don't think we can rule out the possibility that in her mind she is trying to specify the entire set of things she would be willing to do. In fact, I think it rather plausible.

Combine that with the description of how she was cut off: " Her teeth snapped shut, and she sat up straight, staring right through him. Abruptly, she nodded to herself.

It seems as if her being cut off was entirely involuntary, and it takes her by surprise ("she sat up straight, staring right through him.") A moment later she realizes what this means ("Abruptly, she nodded to herself") and continues. We've seen other cases of the first oath kicking in, and the description is very similar (e.g. Egwene taunting Elaida about the fourth oath she was planning to require).

So in short - while I think it would have been possible for Teslyn to say "I will do anything except betray the tower" without the oath kicking in, had she been in a certain state of mind, I believe that in fact she was not in that state of mind, and that what we saw here was, in fact, the first oath kicking in.
Peter Nein
62. gimpols1908
@Teslyn and the oath rod...
I always assumed that this was the oath rod at work due to the 'teeth clicking' comment. It is a discriptor that RJ uses many times through out the series when the first oath kicks in. If i remember right when we are with Perva on the great witch Black Ajah hunt she tells one of 'ferrets' to be silent and her teeth click shut. I take this to mean that Teeth Clicking = Involuntary Mouth Closing. If she had just changed her mind later no teeth clicking would have been involved, but it is a display that she is still herself and trying to hide her desperation until the first oath breaks her ficade and she has to deal with the fact that she is so deaperate that she will forsake all she has sworn allegience to for an escape.

@Irene... I just really miss that Firefox can't spell check within the box (i can't spell my way out of a cracker back jox)

@Nephew - Be kind to the parents, they are about to visit the land of DuskQuil. A magical place where you are neither awake nor asleep.
Elena Vaccaro
63. EarthandIce
First of all Congratulations to you Leigh, nieces and nephews are fun. Unfortunately all of mine were in different parts of the country than I was. And yes spoil him rotten then send him back to Mommy and Daddy.
Ahghhghhggh!! I am not sure I like this. I usually write my comments in a Word doc, copy and paste, now this will not let me.

Freelancer@ 32: Everyone is raised in a culture that they take as 'being the correct one', which is pretty much what you are saying. I congratulate RJ for being able to create a culture that he (I hope) found, well, unsettling at the least.

At this point in time, I would imagine Suroth has told Tuon about the sul'dam being able to learn to channel, but I would not be so sure. Suroth is out for power no matter what it takes to get it, as we will see later in this book, I think. Also, I do not believe Egeanin knows about the two sul’dam being collared if Falme. The only reason she knows is her experience at attempting to control Bethamin with an a’dam.
This brings up something about the ‘Armies of the Dark’ Luthar Paendrag fought. They recognized channelers with the spark, but not those who could learn? This does not make any sense at all to me. Were they so jealous of their power? Something like the Forsaken?

AndrewB @ 34: Yes Rand does sacrifice friends, not because he wants to, but because he can see no other way to do it. In several of his POV’s we see his self recrimination about it. I believe one of the times he thinks his actions will ‘make a Seanchan gag”.

On his compassion after Semirhage’s treatment and his destroying Grandael, I took that as not only his insipient depression, but the taint of the True Power.

Freelancer @ 38: I agree but also include that she is realizing Elaida is not being Amyrlin. Elaida is abusing her power (and being a bully to boot), and as a result Teslyn is in a situation that is very frightening not only to her, but to other Aes Sedai, which Elaida has dismissed as fantasy. Granted Elaida finds out first hand that leashes are real, but her attitude all around has hurt the Tower.

Gimpols1908: No, Firefox will not spell check for me either. My stratige has been to put my comments in a Word doc, spell check then copy and past into the box. : ) With the new comment box I will have to see what happens. Had to put into Notepad to paste. : (
64. MasterAlThor
Well this seems like the perfect time to post this thought about Mat.

I don't care for Mat at this point in the story. Pink ribbons and his continual whining about how Tylin treats him. If you don't like it leave, but no you had to get all Patty Herst on us.

But I have to take the long view of Mat, which is a good way to explain why Mat seems off in tGS. (note that I think that Mat is fine in tGS, but others think that he is off)

Here we see the de-manning (hey if Leigh can make up words so can I) of Mat. So what am I talking about? Well, Mat is getting dressed up in pink ribbons and while his macking skills are still there, you can see his thought process starting to change. He goes back to Tylin, despite the fact that he constantly complains about her treatment of him. He knows that Tuon is a High Lady and yet finds himself attracted to her. Notice he is not bitching about nobles much anymore. Oh he still grumbles, but not so much anymore. My point he is getting used to the idea of being with nobles.

By the time we get to tGS he is married to Tuon and become the Prince of Ravens. He has sent Tuon back to Ebou Dar and he misses her something fierce. Mat will never truly be the lovable rouge that I remember from the first 7 books again, and I guess that is the way it is supposed to be.

I started this saying that I have to take the long view of Mat and I understand that has to grow. But why oh why can he not be more like Nyneave in this regard. (Yes, yes you will say that Nyneave has grown. I say she hasn't) It is very clear to me that Mat is growing, but I love the insistance that he will still be the same Mat even though it is glaringly obvious that he isn't.

Ahhhhh, I long for the days before of Mat before Ebou Dar.


I had more but my children running around constantly asking me for stuff has scattered my brain. I will possibly re-edit this later with more thoughts to tighten up my thoughts
Tess Laird
65. thewindrose
insectoid - you comment at 35 was hilarious before it was fixed:) (Mine was pretty long too, before the fix.) I have to agree with the others who think the 1st Oath is kicking in on Teslyn. Her teeth snapp shut on her thought of treason to the Tower, she stares through Mat, and then nodds to herself and tells Mat that she will do anything if Mat can get her out of there. (What this says about loyalties is a different arguement.) And here is another Mat thought:
He went, muttering to himself. Just like an Aes Sedai. Offer to help her, and the next thing you knew, she had you scaling a sheer cliff in the middle of the night to break fifty people out of a dungeon by yourself. That had been another man, a long time dead, but he remembered it, and it fit. Blood and bloody ashes!

And we finally get Thom back doing something!
He needed a schemer, someone used to plotting and crooked ways of thinking. It was time to make Thom sit down and talk.

Edit to add the Teslyn thought(it disappeared!)

John Massey
66. subwoofer
"What is it that a man may call the greatest things in life?"

- "Hot water, good dentishtry and shoft lavatory paper."

- Words to live by Leigh. I think dentists have a fix going on. I flossed and brushed like religion, see the dentist every six months and he still has the nerve to ask if I floss. ::Smack:: Floss this!
The secret is in the rinsing. Those guys in the Listerine commericals have been holding out. I dunno, me da never took care of his teeth and he smokes like a champion so hello denture- time. Sucks. Hence my paranoia about it. That and you know how hard it is to find dentures for dogs?

Impossibles I tells ya.

@MAT - nice to have you back- :)

Like I said, Matster is going down the long road of Misery coming up. Have we all forgotten the upcoming shenanigans (damn lack of spell check!!!) with Luca's circus? Sometimes duty is heavier than a mountain. Mat, for all his light- heartedness, really does things the TR way. He saves these ladies whom in turn, bust his balls tenders for quite the while coming up. Sigh.

@Insectoid- betcha those dogs were pretty hot, eh? Wink, wink!

@Irene- Yay service pack 0.1!!!

Thomas Keith
67. insectoid
Glad everyone got a laugh out of my Wall-o-Whitespace! ;)

Sub @66: Well, maybe, but I was referring to the Woofing kind of dog. It was bring-your-dog-to-the-park night. ;)

Jay Dauro
68. J.Dauro
Earthandice @63

Eganin learns about Renna and Seta in Winter's Heart 21, when Bethamin tells her.
Tears streaming down her face, Bethamin clutched her cup to her breasts as though hugging herself. If she was trying to keep from shaking, she failed miserably. Trembling, she stared at Egeanin, or perhaps at something beyond her. Something horrifying. The fire had not warmed the room very far yet, but sweat was beaded on Bethamin's face. ". . . and if he learns about Renna and Seta," she babbled, "he will know for sure!  
He'll come after me, and the other sul'dam! You have to stop him! If he takes me, I'll give him your name! I will!" Abruptly she tilted lifted the cup to her mouth unsteadily and gulped the contents, choking and coughing, then thrust it out toward Bayle for more. He did not move. He looked poleaxed.
 "Who are Renna and Seta?" Egeanin asked. She was as frightened as the sul'dam, but as always, she kept her fear hard-reefed. "What can the Seeker learn about them?" Bethamin's eyes slid away, refusing to meet hers, and abruptly she knew. "They are sul'dam, aren't they, Bethamin? And they were collared, too, just like you." 
 "They are in Suroth's service," the woman whimpered. "They are never allowed to be complete, though. Suroth knows.

So in Chapter 13, Eganin knows that a collar will hold Bethamin. She probably has deduced that an a'dam will hold other sul'dam. And she is having to consider how this affects what she has been taught.

Hugh Arai
69. HArai
@Irene: Using Safari the new entry box stretches about twice as wide as the rest of the comment interface. Gives the impression of being a popup slapped on top of the old interface.
70. alreadymadwithcomments
I get pretty much the same with Google Chrome.
Alice Arneson
71. Wetlandernw
Freelancer @32 (and many others, by now) Just have to add a thought here, regarding the way the Seanchan feel about damane and Aes Sedai... This should by rights come in the next chapter, but there it might get buried in the AAACCCKKKKK about how the damane are treated. Bethamin's POV gives us the following:
Fingering her chin thoughtfully, Bethamin studied the kneeling damane. She was suspicious of any damane who had called herself Aes Sedai. History fascinated her, and she had even read translations from the myriad of languages that had existed before the Consolidation began. Those ancient rulers reveled in their murderous, capricious rule, and delighted in setting down how they came to power and how they crushed neighboring states and undermined other rulers. Most had died by assassination, often at the hands of their own heirs or followers. She knew very well what Aes Sedai were like.

What they fail to realize, of course, is that the "Aes Sedai" after the Age of Legends and the Breaking went in (at least) two different directions, though both still called themselves Aes Sedai. On the Seanchan continent, they went in the direction of self-serving, power-hungry, despotic rulers who did whatever they wanted; the only ones who could gainsay them were others of equal or greater strength in the One Power. On the Randland continent, they began to work together and eventually formed the White Tower, which, while obviously not ideal after 3000 years, still held itself to a certain standard of service and mostly stayed out of politics.

(Yes, I know, they pulled strings on nations and brokered treaties, but it was less for personal power and more for the sake of maintaining or reinstating peace between the nations whenever possible. For all we see of the failures of the White Tower, compared to what the "Aes Sedai" on the other side of the Aryth Ocean had become, it's really quite good.)

Given that background, and then the Ishamael-influenced antipathy toward Aes Sedai that came along with Luthair Paendrag, the Seanchan attitude toward the White Tower, as well as channelers in general, is perhaps a little more understandable. It's not right, but it's understandable.

Somewhere along the line, the sul'dam figure out that leashed Aes Sedai are mostly worthless as fighters; I wonder if anyone actually asks questions about why they are unable to use the Power as a weapon. In any case, by the time we get to TGS, Tuon has spent a great deal of time with a few AS, and we can hope that she will eventually put together the things she's learned to realize that AS in Randland are not the same as the ones in her history books.
Thomas Keith
72. insectoid
AMW @70: And of course, in Chrome it won't let you resize to fix it:)

WetNW @71: I'd say the Seanchan didn't get the memo (or email, or tweet) about AS being cooperative and peaceful. ;)

John Massey
73. subwoofer
@Insectoid- really? Cool- dogpark! We had something like that a few weeks ago. The SPCA was there and they were adopting out pooches too. It was a good time. Me, the woofers and beer... oh yeah, a ball game happened somewhere in there too.

Er... WoT related- AS peaceful and not meddling? mmmmmmmmmmm... Didn't Suian lament of one of her botched attempts of nation building because the guy she wass trying to save died a short while after? And Elaida- IIRC meddle was her middle name. Regardless of motivation, the AS did dable in politics. Not saying it was good or bad, but the truth remains. They had organization, order, civility and rules that are upheld to this day. Perhaps that is the distinguishing feature from their counterparts across the pond. And did Artur send many with his son? Were those he did send normal or docile?

Alice Arneson
74. Wetlandernw
subwoofer - As I noted, the Randland AS do meddle in politics, but more for the purpose of keeping the peace than for overt power-plays (particularly personal power/rulership). Also, they are all functioning more-or-less for the goals set by the WT, rather than the pre-Consolidation-Seanchan multiplicity of nations, each with its AS ruler(s) all fighting one another, ripping the countryside to pieces with the Power.

Given how Hawkwing felt about AS, I doubt he sent any over the pond with his son. Anyone kn0w for sure?
Hugh Arai
75. HArai
Wetlandernw@74: Didn't Manetheren get betrayed because the Amyrlin of the time was jealous of Eldrene? Sometimes I wonder if the Randland/Seanchan differences in AS behaviour aren't more of a result of Ishamael's influence more than anything else - the AS Darkfriends are simply more cohesive and more subtle this side of the ocean. The OP wielders in the other cultures appear to demonstrate that channelers aren't born demanding supreme executive power so it seems to be up to the individual's choices.
Alice Arneson
76. Wetlandernw
HArai - There was a time, many years past, when Aes Sedai did marry, and in some cases (as with Eldrene) ruled kingdoms. (IIRC, Eldrene was the last Aes Sedai queen, but I could well be wrong about that.) Whatever the reasons, by the time of the Forerunners and the Return, the activities of Aes Sedai in Randland bear very little resemblance to what the Seanchan "know" about Aes Sedai.

It is my fond hope that someone who can do something about it (Fortuona?) will recognize that channelers can indeed control themselves, and need not be controlled by others (who are of course latent channelers themselves); with that knowledge, the necessity of leashing all channelers simply goes away, and the shame of the sul'dam as latent channelers becomes moot.

Incidentally, this could be Fortuona's way out of the dilemma of learning to channel: if channelers need not be leashed, then she's home free.
john mullen
77. johntheirishmongol
Nice little new notepad here, hopefully won't lose any more posts when I try to write.

Anyway, it was nice to see all the ones who are leaving getting together ...Tuon and Mat, the AS, egeanin and the capt, Setalle etc...kind of a quick preview of who we were going to see a lot of in the future.

I like the whole scene in the kitchen. The necking scene is always good for a laugh. It's no wonder that everyone uses it because when people are doing pda, the natural inclination is to not pay attention too closely.
John Massey
78. subwoofer
Well, in some eyes this could become a "chicken and egg" arguement. Did Tuon relent the leashing of damane because she could channel or did she do it because it was the right thing to do and she can channel?

I think this is Rand's thing to do. His "kneeling to the Crystal Throne" or whatever, albeit in word, nod of the head or some strange twist of the phrase will have conditions. Or maybe his kneeling is so he can strike at Tuon's knee-caps easier. Regardless, I think the Dragon, strongest ta'veren around, will use his pull to put a stop to the insanity. As long as he doesn't get carried away and give women the vote.

Runs for cover- Fire in the hole!!!

79. Sue11
According to the BBoBA "the first a'dam was made by an Aes Sedai, Deain, who brought it to Luthair Pendraeg in an attempt to curry favor with him. She knew he had no Aes Sedai in his armies, and for the most part the Aes Sedai hated him."
Since Artur Hawkwing in 975 "put a price on the head of any Aes Sedai who refused to renounce Tar Valon", he would be unlikely to send any with his son to Seanchan. So Ishamael was sending Luthair into a death trap!
Hugh Arai
80. HArai
Wetlandernw@76: I share your hope. The problem being Tuon is at least as stubborn about knowing "the proper way of things" as anyone else in the series. We'll see soon I hope.

subwoofer@78: I'm not sure Rand's ta'veren pull is going to do it. He worked it pretty hard at their meeting in TGS after all and couldn't even get her to agree to ally against the DO.

Thomas Keith
81. insectoid
Hello, what's this? The comment box is normal sized again... Thanks Irene! :D

Antoni Ivanov
82. tonka
@ 74. Wetlandernw

According to BWB the Aes Sedai in Seanchan were already there playing for power, killing each other untill they were not leashed. I really really doubt any were brought with ships.
83. alreadymadwithkneeling
subwoofer @78
It will take someone of Rand's height a great deal of kneeling to hit Tuon's knees.
Dorothy Johnston
84. CloudMist
I think there are two relatively simple ways for the Seanchan to change the way damane are treated: one, for Elayne or someone else to create an adam that, instead of putting the damane under the control of a suldam, creates the effect of the damane having sworn the Three Oaths while she wears it. The other would be to either copy the Oath Rod already in Tar Valon or find another binder rod and give it to the Seanchan.

Below is one of my cats, Yukiri, playing with her Warder Purple Dog.
85. Freelancer

For everyone who isn't sure, pda as referenced in the above post means "public display(s) of affection".


I'm sure that Yukiri never looked so good. She is Gray, right?
Alice Arneson
86. Wetlandernw
tonka @82 - My point exactly @71

CloudMist @84 - Awwww. :)
John Massey
87. subwoofer
Wow! This is a slow news week. Day 3 and we are not even skirting 1 hunny. 4 double 00 buck is up for grabs on the prediction thread, but as you have notices from my lack of posting there, I am just not feeling that thread.

@CloudMist- soooo, lemme get this straight, Purple Dog is Warder to your kitty? Scratches head with paw... does this mean yur cat can channel? How doe she do the hand gestures/ waving around? :)

Thomas Keith
88. insectoid
CloudMist @84: Awww cute!! :D

Sub @87: Perhaps the kitty was raised by Wise Ones, and doesn't need to use all those silly gestures.

After all, all they have to do is look cute and meow and they get fed. :P

Sandy Brewer
89. ShaggyBella
Slow day for sure. A good laugh in this chapter for me -Teslyn to Mat:

"It do be best if you go now." she broke in again. "Men are no allowed up here, and in any case, you will rouse suspicions if you do be found." Frowning at him, she sniffed. "It would help if you did not dress so flamboyantly. Ten drunken Tinkers could no attract as much attention as you do. Go, now. Quickly. Go!"

Everyone is a critic, I guess. Or the clothes really are awful.
One other thing I was thinking about...Tuon must know about Mat & Tylin's relationship. What does she think of her future spouse being a Queen's plaything? Possibly how she can get rid of Tylin. It would be irritating, kind of a cruel joke, that the guy you are supposed to get has a beautiful, well endowed Queen for a lover.
Dorothy Johnston
90. CloudMist
Freelancer, et al.

Instead of hand motions, Yukiri swishes her tail. In fact, when she's utterly bored, she chases her tail. I named her Yukiri because she's colored like a Japanese spaniel but given her personality, I should have named her after a Green.
Maiane Bakroeva
91. Isilel
Is Joline the most stupid and annoying Light-fearing AS ? It certainly seems so. From now on I kept wondering how she managed not to Darwinate out long ago. Her warders must be extremely competent indeed.And a Sitter, however briefly? Really?
Her quick vascillation between stupid haughtiness, recklessness and utter terror/helplessness here was particularly contemptible. And this is a Green? I hope that Setalle gets her channeling back and shows the dim-witted twit what"s what.

Oh, and why are so many female characters prudish prigs? Even when they are Seanchan soldiers/sailors?

Setalle is awesome here, BTW, and so is Mat, because fate isn't forcing him into things as it mostly does. It was his decision to rescue Teslyn.

Another very visceral example of what damanehood truly means, too.
Pretty interesting that Edesina who was in Seanchan captivity since the end of TFoH, IIRC, held up pretty well while Teslyn is aready cracking.

I fortell here that Teslyn will be the one to bring Mat, Thom and Noal to the Tower of Genji via Travelling and that she'll Heal a mortally wounded Moiraine in the nick of time, once they re-emerge. She'll also remain with the Band/Mat, since they badly need a medico, separately or together.

I was excited about the impending escape/rescue escapade hinted at here. Too bad that it took 2 more books to conclude...
Lucas Vollmer
92. aspeo
Warning theorizing below :)

Regarding the AS in Seanchan. Is it possible that the original ones who went there were dreadlords/darkfriends that fled there when seals were placed on the bore? When the backlash came it made the men go mad, but what about the women? There were almost certainly women in the ranks of channelers for the shadow(just look at the forsaken), and the only two real possibilities for what happened to them was being killed or fleeing to safety.

This leads me to the idea that they fled to what became the Seanchan continent, and tried setting up kingdoms for themselves. I am pretty sure that they are described as almost constantly warring with the one power, as well as being power-hungry and greedy. This sounds very different from the AoL AS either before or after the bore was initially opened. From the limited scenes we have of AS from back then they are still looking out for the people and trying to help, instead of looking for power or glory.

I am sure other people have theorized this, but I haven't read it before; so I thought I'd lay it out there for you all...

PS The new comment box is pretty neat cool! ;P
Maiane Bakroeva
93. Isilel
Aspeo @92:

Personally I have always been convinced that Seanchan had been one of the territories held by the Shadow during the War of the Shadow. I mean, the Seanchan emblem is the Raven, which used to be also the symbol of the Shadow both during the eponymous War and during the Trolloc Wars. What more needs to be said?
And of course, a lot of Seanchan customs seem to be evolved from DF behaviour. Like, for instance,children of the Empress needing to prove their strength and fitness to rule by struggling against each other.
Tricia Irish
94. Tektonica
Aspeo@92 and Isilel@93:

Excellent observations about the AS in Seanchan Land post AOL....and one I've not seen before on this thread. That would certainly explain the AS belligerence there and subsequent collaring, as well as the vying for position by the Empress' children. Seanchan Land = Shadowland. (At least in the past) With hold-over attitudes today. I wonder if any of this will come out in the next two books?
Valentin M
95. ValMar
Really great observations on the customs on the Seanchan continent! Not only the rules of the succession (RL Ottoman e.g.) but also the slavery (RL where to begin?), etc.
Whilst RJ clearly drew from RL cultures to create the Seanchan, there is an underlying darkness which is absent from other WOT cultures, IMO.
So, even if not DF, customs and characteristics of the Seanchan have seeds from those of DF 3 000 years ago.
Lucas Vollmer
96. aspeo
I hadn't thought about the Empress and her children. Their vying for position has some strong resemblances to the Forsaken and their struggles with each other to become Nae'blis.

I agree that there certainly seems to be a certain darkness to the culture as a whole, even if a lot of the normal people are pretty much good.

I think a historical flashback to right after the end of the war in Seanchan would make for some very interesting reading. Too bad we probably won't be getting it :(
Maybe there will be an article in the encyclopedia if they decide to make one though!
Barry T
98. blindillusion

Don't forget, Teslyn was given special attention harsher training by the sul'dam Bethamin.
Birgit F
99. birgit
TGH,Ch7 - The Sea Folk have a saying about Seanchan, "lands under the Shadow, beyond the setting sun, beyond the Aryth Ocean, where the Armies of Night reign."
That would make sense if Seanchan was Shadow territory.
100. MasterAlThor

And of course, a lot of Seanchan customs seem to be evolved from DF behaviour. Like, for instance,children of the Empress needing to prove their strength and fitness to rule by struggling against each other.

Good eye there Isilel. You have given me something to mull over for a long time. Thank you.


Edit: Shout out goes to Woof. I got it for ya
Liz Piltch
101. amythswitch
Why is the index page not updating with links to current posts? It doesnt even show that shes started posting about winters heart yet.
102. MasterAlThor

You forgot to mention what Turak said to Fain,

The Armies of Night had other followers.
TGH Ch 34

Yhat is some very important info. We might want to dig into that some more. Anyone willing to get RAFO'd?

103. Paulw

I dunno, I just find it hard to believe that I could be more jaded than Mr. Military over there about the realities of being a female POW (or equivalent). But then again, I guess none of his memories ever had to think about that sort of thing. Lucky them.

Hasn't Mat figured that which memories he received were picked by the finns? There's no reason to assume abusing female POWs was seen as relevant (and could have a disastrous effect on someone like Mat). The scene is rather fitting his youthful optimistic viewpoint.

yes, the whole slavery thing is ofcourse abhorrent to our enlightend western standards but leashing channelers is a quite logical thing to do from the historical Seanchan perspective.Seeing their major wars in the past with wild channelers, who are not barred by anything resembling the 3 oaths, i'd probably do the same...

Their wars also consisted of many men killing each other, not barred by anything resembling the 3 oaths. Why are men not held in slavery? It seems silly to try and justify it on that level. It's understandable why they would do it, but to try and frame it as anything but an opportunistic power grab is to miss the point. "Enlightenment" is nothing to do with it; Luthair enslaved women who can channel to secure his position of power. The institution of suldam/damane has nothing to do with the greater good, regardless of the intentions of those participating.

I think this is Rand's thing to do. His "kneeling to the Crystal Throne" or whatever, albeit in word, nod of the head or some strange twist of the phrase will have conditions.

Isn't any "Karetheon Cycle" information from Seanchan suspect? They were mutilated for Seanchan propaganda purposes.
Antoni Ivanov
104. tonka
91. Isilel
Pretty interesting that Edesina who was in Seanchan captivity since the end of TFoH, IIRC, held up pretty well while Teslyn is aready cracking.

What are you talking about? Edesina is on a embassy from the Salidar Aes Sedai, she was captured the same time as Teslyn when the Seanchan took Ebou Dar
Karen Fox
105. thepupxpert
Free @ 38 and various - The way I interpreted Teslyn's reaction to the words she was saying to Mat was that Teslyn was lying to herself that her desire to be free would not override her loyalty to the White Tower. In reality, she was ready to do anything and therefore was prevented from saying what she initially started to say. Didn't her teeth clamp down as she was saying the words or am I misremembering? I think we've seen this a lot when oaths kick in, that person's mouth just shuts down or they start choking on their words and can't get them out.
Karen Fox
106. thepupxpert
Jonathan @ 61 - I see you got there before me and way more eloquently! I should've read through everything first!
Karen Fox
107. thepupxpert
edit for double post
Rajesh Vaidya
108. Buddhacat
@105 and many others before:
I have seen a lot of people stop, clamp shut their mouths when re-thinking what they are going to say, and then say the revised thing. Exactly as Teslyin did. So there is no reason to invoke an Oaths-related process for her changing what she said. The author used the formulation as a way to emphasize how vehemently she wanted out, that's all.
Daniel Goss
109. Beren
I guess I never saw it as an oath coming into effect. I saw it as a woman having a bit of an internal conversation.
She inhaled deeply. “If you do help me escape, I will do anything you ask of me that does not encompass treason to the White—”
Her teeth snapped shut, and she sat up straight, staring right through him.
(inner monologue something like "No, I'll do anything. Will I really do anything? Turmoil Turmoil, Angst and Turmoil. Yes, I suppose I really will do anything)
Abruptly, she nodded to herself. “Help me escape, and I will do anything you ask of me,” she said.
Whether that's an oath clamping down on a statement that she didn't consciously realize was untrue, or merely a desperate woman learning a bitter truth about the flexibility of her own loyalties when placed against the possibility of permenant enslavement, I don't know.
*edit for wysiwyg editor
110. Freelancer
RE: Teslyn

I personally believe Beren's description, but I can understand someone interpreting the action as the First Oath taking effect. To me, the key is this:
Abrputly, she nodded to herself.
This action indicates, as Beren suggests, an internal conflict having been resolved. As I have previously posited, Teslyn stops herself from finishing her statement while a condition was included. Does she dare risk being left enslaved for the sake of the Aes Sedai institution? No, she does not. So she has decided to discard a previously unconditional loyalty to the White Tower, and in return for making certain that Mat understands how badly she wants free, she would now willingly oppose the Tower if Mat wishes it.

It is not so much of a stretch for her, after all. She has been opposing Elaida in tiny ways ever since she and Joline were "dumped" in Ebou Dar, which Teslyn surely knows was simply to get them out of Elaida's way, as well as, in Teslyn's case, to show that Elaida would be harsh to her own Ajah if she felt like it.
Steve Hussey
111. deihbhussey
I'm making these posts having not as yet read all posts (I'm late on Friday's re-read and just started it a few hours ago), so hopefully more people haven't touched on the same points & i apologize in advance if I'm repeating anything.

RE: Teslyn: Important to keep in mind that she was already at extreme odds with the Elaida run WT given her earlier feelings on the matter – hence drugging Joliene to prevent her from doing anything to bring the SG’s to Elaida (not out of love for the SG, but out of spite against Elaida)
Also great thoughts on Ishy and poisoning Hawkwing leading to a supposition that he did the same in Seanchan lands with Hawkwing’s descendents - I never considered that but it definitely makes a ton of sense.

Completely agree on Mat’s status as the Uber Hero of the 3, though I am biased in that since he’s my favorite. Great examples quoted too. He does what is right regardless of danger to himself and maybe he hasn't been put in position to pick "the lesser of two evils" - so that may be why he gets to keep the "knight-errant" status longer. It'll be interesting how he reacts to his loyalties in the coming books being Prince of the Ravens and Rands uber-general.

I actually enjoy Mat cause it's Mat & I always like him getting more screentime (even in the early books, with the exception of tDR, he didn't get much screentime by himself sans another major character). I do disagree that Mat should leave if he’s unhappy as I don't think he's actually unhappy here - basically Mat just likes to grumble about the way things are and what he puts up with, but that’s just cause he likes to b*tch at himself.

IMO, I think Mat continues to go back to Tylin because he doesn’t want to leave (& the pattern doesn’t want him to leave) until it’s time to make the correct move. That’s his Art of War training in action. It isn’t time yet as all the appropriate pieces are not in place, so he is doing what he needs to do to get ready to go when the moment is right & concurrently – subconsciously or consciously – utilizing the advantages being the “Queen’s Toy” obviously bring him. It keeps the Seanchan off his backs and gives him free reign to move pretty much anywhere he wants within the city & palace while allowing him to go about his planning right under everyone’s collective noses. Also, I think he secretly enjoys being with Tylin, but just doesn't want to consiously admit it to himself.

I will now continue to read the remainder of the posts. :-)
Tricia Irish
113. Tektonica
We got a spammer.....see Buzhi@112....they spammed every thread they could get to.....I flagged it, but don't know what else to do. ?
Tina Pierce
114. scissorrunner
Mat not realizing he is acting like a hero while he's risking everything is why he is such a favorite. or maybe we wish we'd act the same way just "because" (at least it is for me)
Wesley Parish
115. Aladdin_Sane
It was one of the funniest parts of the book for me - poor Mat loathes - professionally - Aes Sedai, yet he's willing to pretend to be snuggling her just to keep her safe ...

Tuon cracks me up too - so sure of herself, prowling around, stalking Mat, while he's doing his level best to crack the Seanchan wide open ... and she cracks a smile because she likes what she sees - and he thinks she's beautiful.

Some mothers do 'ave 'em; and there's one born every minute.

BTW - Auntie Leigh, congrats! (Now if you seriously want to be freaked out, remember who Auntie is in Hoban's Riddley Walker ... )
Alice Arneson
116. Wetlandernw
Tektonica @113 - Flagging is all you can do, but it's enough. Torie & company are very quick to check on flagged messages and remove them when they're spam. And in a case like that, where multiples show up, she'll get all of them. (Incidentally, it's also a way to call her attention to a message such as, for instance, a plea for a new discussion thread... Email works for that, too.)
Jonathan Levy
117. JonathanLevy

I agree with 99% of your description of Teslyn's motives, but that's because 99% of it is equally valid for the Oath-Rod-Kicking-In interpretation. See how few changes I need to make in your text:

This action indicates, as Beren suggests, an internal conflict having been resolved. As I have previously posited, Teslyn was stopped from finishing her statement while a condition was included. Does she dare risk being left enslaved for the sake of the Aes Sedai institution? No, she does not. So she has realized she is willing to discard a previously unconditional loyalty to the White Tower, and in return for making certain that Mat understands how badly she wants free, she would now willingly oppose the Tower if Mat wishes it.It is not so much of a stretch for her, after all. She has been opposing Elaida in tiny ways ever since she and Joline were "dumped" in Ebou Dar, which Teslyn surely knows was simply to get them out of Elaida's way, as well as, in Teslyn's case, to show that Elaida would be harsh to her own Ajah if she felt like it.

@108 @109 & @110:
To me it seems that this is precisely the way Jordan would have written the scene if he wanted it to be an oath rod kicking in. If he hadn't, there are a million ways he could have achieved exactly the effect Freelancer describes without including an involuntary reaction which might have been caused by an Oath. An example:

“If you do help me escape, I will do anything you ask of me that does not encompass treason to the White Tower”. She sat up straight, staring right at him. Abruptly, she nodded to herself. “Help me escape, and I will do anything you ask of me,” she said.

Let me ask the complementary question. If Jordan's scene does not describe an oath rod kicking in, then how do you believe he would have written this scene if he HAD intended the oath rod to have kicked in? Please keep in mind that the POV is Mat's, not Teslyn's, and that Jordan doesn't tend to spell things out for his readers.
Wesley Parish
118. Aladdin_Sane
92. aspeo

Nice point. I hadn't considered that a possibility. But on the other hand, they have these exotics, the torm, the raken, etc, which I understand from the Big Book with Bad Pictures, to have been used to suppress Shadowspawn.

So on one hand, the Crystal Throne as a coercive 'angraal of some sort, made specifically for the use of the Dreadlords during the War of the Shadow, yes, I can understand how that would be possible; but on the other hand, the torm, the raken, etc, crushing the Shadowspawn, I can't see how that could've happened without some of the channelers being of the Light, and being in command of those exotics.

Yep, a bit of a mystery. But clearly the Seanchan see themselves as being in the Light now, howevermuch they may have been a DF territory during the War of the Shadow.
119. Shard
So do any of you think that Teslyn and Joline are the Two Aes Sedai that leave the world hanging in Balance that are in connection to Mat?
diane heath
120. jadelollipop
It was my understanding that the 2 Aes Sedai that are weighed on the scale by Mat were Moraine and Verin. He has to wait for a time in Camelyn and then follow directions left by Verin or go with Thom to save Moraine. Two promises he made. What if they conflict?
Maiane Bakroeva
121. Isilel
Alladin-sane @118:

" But on the other hand, they have these exotics, the torm, the raken, etc, which I understand from the Big Book with Bad Pictures, to have been used to suppress Shadowspawn."

Well, it is my understanding from this book and RJ's answers that even those on the side of the Shadow didn't remain cohesive during the Breaking. And one needs a DO's mark to command Shadowspawn or at least Ishy As an Intermidiary like during the Trolloc Wars. So, it is not surprising for me that despite their DF origins, the Seanchan channelers eventually lost control over them.
IMHO existence of slavery among the Seanchan and in Shara, when it is unknown in the Westlands and was unknown during AoL, is another strong hint that they used to be Shadow-controlled.
The current Seanchan customs are an unholy mix of those DF-derived attitudes and the ideals of Hawkwing's Empire, IMHO.
Rob Munnelly
122. RobMRobM
Lsiel - I should note that your insights in the Seanchan area over the past day have been particularly thought provoking. Well done. Rob
Rajesh Vaidya
123. Buddhacat
More on the Teslyn point: As a plot point, and as a moment of personal realization and growth of Teslyn as a person and Mat as a hero, it packs more of a punch that Teslyn chose to swear the way she did of her own free will, foregoing the usual AS nitpicks and skullduggery. The Oath-Rod-kicks-in scenario is totally counter-productive to the overall sense of this chapter.
Rob Munnelly
124. RobMRobM
Buddha @123. I don't agree. I like the plot point that Teslyn instinctively proffers the WT protective party line, is brought up short by the Oath (to her surprise), and has to admit the truth that she'll do anything to get out of the collar, even if it harms the WT's interests. That's powerful enough of an epiphany for me.

125. BenM
Shard @119: I always thought so. But looking back on it, how much difference would it really make? Is Teslyn going to save the world somehow, or something? Does it really matter which AS warned Mat? He rescued both of them, regardless.
126. Shard
See I always thought the balance of Two AS was about Moraine somehow. It was just recently where some have said it was Teslyn and Joline and I have no idea what they will do that would fit the prophecy. I like what Jadelollipop said choosing between Moraine and Verin, THAT makes sense to me.
Birgit F
127. birgit
Does it really matter which AS warned Mat? He rescued both of them, regardless.
It matters because if Joline had been the one who wrote the note Mat wouldn't have gone to the kennels and would only have rescued one AS.
David Guenther
128. stoonbora
I always read Tuon's comment to Mat about being kind to damanes not as a way of saying that she had a subliminal connection to them at all. To me it echoed the way I feel if I'm talking to a girl I'm attracted to and she mentions that she has a dog or really likes dogs. It makes that person automatically more attractive me. Of course in this context, with humans and not dogs being the subject in question, it becomes hella creepy.

(Also, I realize that this comment comes almost 5 months after the last one on this thread, and that people are likely no longer reading them on posts this old, but I'm just making my way through the re-read now and feel the need to post every once in a while!)
Alice Arneson
129. Wetlandernw
stoonbora - in case you see this... by all means comment! You're not the only one starting the reread late, and many more will probably follow. You can even ask questions, because us old-timers often notice when there's a new comment on an old thread and come back to check on it. And FWIW, I certainly never felt that Tuon's "kind to damane" thing was due to a subliminal connection. As you say... If I spend a lot of time training or breeding dogs, someone who treats dogs well in general is going to meet a certain amount of approval from me.
David Guenther
130. stoonbora
Good to know that there are still people looking at old comments Wetlander, thanks. It makes me feel less like I'm talking to myself.

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