Thu
Jan 26 2012 1:00pm

Rothfuss Reread: Speculative Summary 8: “I have a patron” Speculations on Master Ash

We’re half way through our over-the-top re-read of Patrick Rothfuss’s The Wise Man’s Fear, and we’re going to pause here for another speculative summary. After we’ve summed up some of the speculation we’ll be moving on. These posts assume you’ve read all of both books The Name of the Wind and The Wise Man’s Fear, and they are absolutely full of wild surmise, speculation and spoilers for all of both books. Please don’t go beyond the cut unless you want that!

Abbreviations: NW = The Name of the Wind. WMF = The Wise Man’s Fear. DT = Day Three, the forthcoming final volume. K = Kvothe or Kote when I can’t figure out what to call him and I’m feeling Kafkaesque. MT: Myr Tariniel. D = Denna

Useful links: The Sleeping Under the Wagon post, in which there are lots of theories. The re-read index. The map.

We’re going to have one more bonus speculative summary post next week in which I sum up everything I think we know about the Creation War. Then the week after we’ll get on with WMF from the meeting with Felurian.

Master Ash

I think we have two theories about Master Ash, Cinder and Bredon. We also have a pile of speculation about Bredon.

We know from our German readers that “Ash” is the ash tree more significantly than it is the residue of fires, and we know Rothfuss works closely with his translators.

Daedos asks a really interesting question:

Denna never seems to feel annoyed with her actual patron. He is easily as demanding as Kellin, even if he doesn’t keep her locked up in a room. This shows that Denna is not one to be kept around simply for money / jewels (as with Kellin), and must be after something much more important to her in her relationship with Master Ash. He either has some sort of literal hold on her (whether magical, blackmail, or other), or it is a more symbiotic relationship. He has something she really wants and she has something he wants. We’ve speculated a bit about what Denna wants, but what about her patron? What does he have to gain from their relationship?

I think it is her music / voice. Maybe she is a Singer, or has potential to be one. Then again, if she is a singer, her view of Lanre (Haliax) as the tragic hero might conflict with the fact that the Chandrian are afraid (or at least weary) of Singers.

Whoever her patron is, what does he have to gain from having D? Maybe her singing. The whole pile of stuff patrons usually get in the way of goodwill he’s not getting because of the secretive nature. And it doesn’t seem that he’s doing the thing Threpe talks about with training somebody up quietly to reveal them.

Mr Awesome has a suggestion:

We don’t know much about the fae, but we do know that D’s patron was suppressing information about Lanre, probably on purpose because he supplied her with historical texts and also because it seems unlikely he’d have an interest in Lanre if his intent wasn’t to futher suppress the truth. It also would be unusual for D’s super mysterious patron to accidentally help the Chandrian. I feel like it’s unlikely that he wants to help the Chandrian end the world because that would also end his beautiful game, but he does seem to be helping them, at least a little bit, through this misinformation.

Maybe he’s on the neutral side of the Naming/Shaping war, trying to preserve equillibrium?

Maybe indeed. We haven’t heard a whole lot about that side. That would make him a tinker as I understand things. Have we seen any tinkers he could be? Yes... the one Kvothe buys the paper from. But I don’t believe a tinker would beat D.

Chandrian or Amyr?

Most of us seem to think he has to be on one side or the other — though the Chandrian and the Amyr post-date the Creation War of course.

Maltheos wonders:

I think Master Ash is Bredon who may or may not be affiliated with the Chandrian, but who IMHO has an idea of Kvothe’s parentage. Which is why Denna was sent and why its “her job” to keep an eye on Kvothe. Also this explains why Bredon is so helpful to him at court — he is simply playing a deeper game. Additionally it explains his pagan rituals — it is unlikely that his dabling in “the occult” magics of chaning names is held in much good light by the establishment.

CPJ:

I suspect Ash of being Amyr, but if so, why does he tell D the story of Lanre in which Lanre is the good guy?

Somebody suggested way back that D and K could be parallels — as his family were destroyed by the Chandrian and he is becoming an Amyr in opposition to that, she might have had some parallel experience with the Amyr destroying her life and leading her to seek out a Chandrian to oppose them.

If you ask cui bono from her Lanre song, it’s definitely the Chandrian.

Bredon and Cinder

My initial thought was that Master Ash was Cinder. I was very surprised by the suggestion it was Bredon.

Stephan Jones speaks for me here:

I didn’t have the slightest suspicion that Bredon was anything other than a helpful old courtier. Now I think I wasn’t paying enough attention.

Bredon fits in many ways — and whether or not he’s Master Ash he’s still really mysterious. But the further assumption many of us have been making that Bredon is an Amyr — I really don’t think so. The “beautiful game” is in many ways the opposite of the “greater good”. Means vs Ends.

Dave435 is convinced he’s Bredon:

Bredon=Mr.Ash I think Pat has stated this a plainly as he will state anything. Denna mentions that she is teaching Mr. ash to dance Bredon mentions he has recently taken up dancing. Deanna and Mr. Ash are gone and Bredon is gone as well.

But it could be a red herring!

Daedos thinks he’s connected with the Fae and comes up with some solid evidence:

I think his “pagan” frolicking might be explained in book three. Pagan...Fae? Might he be connected with the Fae? Who plays Tak? Bredon, Felurian...has anyone else ever mentioned the game?

This gets even more interesting if Bredon is, in fact, Master Ash. What might the Fae have in mind for Denna? We discussed the possibility of her going to the other world extensively. Maybe there is some connection after all. This would put Denna’s version of Lanre’s tale into an entirely different light. Maybe it can all be traced back to the Cthaeh...

Greyhood is absolutely sure, but thinks this is part of the beautiful game:

If Bredon was being tried in court for being Master Ash, he’d be convicted. The wolf head is particularly blatant for me. “A man and a fae are as different as a dog and a wolf.” Tak. Denna and Bredon’s appearance/disappearance/appearance in Severen. Pagan rituals. Etc., etc., etc.

Fascinating character. He’s so likeable, and Ash is so twisted and confusing. And his agenda is unknown. It’s going to be a great reveal. I think Rothfuss wants us to know he is Ash so we can try to guess at the beautiful game. And since we know we’re walking into a trap...

The idea of “beautiful game” opens up so many possibilities. K with his unseen enemies, K with Chronicler, Rothfuss with us...

And let’s face it, the “beautiful game” is the opposite of “for the greater good”, and the song benefits the Chandrian, so Bredon/Ash clearly cannot be an Amyr. And the beautiful game is also the opposite of destroying the world, so Bredon/Ash clearly cannot be a Chandrian. And since iocaine powder comes from Australia...

We need a third option.

Shalter asks who the real opponent is in that beautiful game:

1) The Cthaeh is presented as prefectly malicious and aware of every branch of the future. We should be doubly suspicious of anything it trys to emphasize.
2) Bredon emphasizes that it is the overall long term game in which he is interested. When he meets Kvothe, K is more of a piece on the board than a player.

Whom would be a better opponent for the most beautiful, long term game for Bredon—Kvothe or the Cthaeh? At this point in the story, it seems clear that the answer to this question is the Cthaeh. We are pulled by our closeness to Kvothe as the protagonist to imagine that everthing centers on him, but Kvothe is much more a piece than a player.
Both Bredon and the Cthaeh (and probably others) are trying to manipulate Kvothe in the grand game that they are involved in.
Now, does this mean that Bredon is good? We don’t know what his goals are (or even what he is exactly) only that he is playing his long term game. If he is really playing against the Cthaeh, then it does seem that either he must be a long lived entity or he must be a member of a long lived organization. Since he views himself as a player rather than a piece, it seems likely he is long lived and thus not entirely human. Whether he is Fae, Amyr, Angel or other remains to be seen.

And Mr Awesome actually has a suggestion that makes sense of what he’s doing:

Thought: if Bredon’s strategy is to jump into traps headlong and then turn the trap against itself, what trap is he jumping into via his manipulations of D, specifically the propaganda she’s spreading? Why would it be in his best interest to make Lanre seem nice?

and Wetlander NW has a sensible warning against speculating too far:

I find the assumption that Bredon = Ash (on the part of some readers) mildly amusing. It’s possible, maybe even probable, but it’s certainly not yet proven. Trying to figure out Bredon’s motives based on what Denna does at her patron’s instigation might be fruitful, or it might just be a jaunt down the garden path.

and A Fox brings it all back to the Creation War with some very interesting speculation:

I have always believed that Bredon is D’s patron since first reading. I’d like to draw some links between Bredons/M Ash’s behaviour and the Creation war.

CW; Fae were created by the Shapers, who then created Faen etc etc. It seems likely that the Fae also faught on the side of the Shapers. Perhaps by choice, perhaps by command. Perhaps a combination. They were defeated.

The Fae were locked in Fae beyound the doors of stone (it seems likely that this ’locking’ does not completely work becuase of the moon’s power being in both Faen and 4c’s...it cannot be cut from itself s the dr is always ajar to some extent. Perhaps this is why Iax ’stole’ it in the first place? A guarentee that he and his would nt simply be locked away forever?).

By closing off Faen it seems that most of the magic in the 4c’s was also closed off, as well.

We have had mentions of the Sithe court...their customs and duties to protect the Ctheath..or othrs from the Ctheaths influence. How long has the Ctheath been in Faen? Were they thus honour bound during the war? Perhaps then they felt they had no choice but to stay when the doors were closed.

Either way these people have been locked away becuase of others actions. Trapped and persecuted as demons when they do manage to cross.

During the end of the war Lanre traveled to.through Faen and turned his coat, saw from an other perspective. Unfortunately this change came from and/or culminated in the Ctheaths malicious influence. So his reaction was a bit...extreme.

M Ash is an agent of Faen/the Sithe...he finds D, a new yet talented musician and gets her to write the Song of Seven Sorrows, giving an alternative view of the Creation war...one from the perspective f Faen. Notice hw curios it is that Iax isnt glorified...this suggests that the Fae were conscripted/honour bound rather than allies.

M Ash als does this at a time when K is coming nto his powers..possibly the one capable of opening the ways between Faen and the 4Cs.

Of course the gaping hole in this is that the Sithe are mentioned by the 7 as their hunters...mmm...perhaps a rival Faen group?

Either way we know that K will return to Faen and we know he’ll pick up Bast, as well as the clear build up to his beliefs being turned on their head...so we’ll see a lot more f this. And I suspect it will all be GREY.

Other possibilites

The Frog suggests:

what about the possibility that Ben, Bredon and Mr. Ash and maybe even Scarpi are all related or even the same person. Maybe Ben has been watching/manipulating/guiding Kvothe along ever since he left the troupe. We’ve already established the possible connection between Bredon and Mr. Ash. Ben’s been gone so long that we tend to forget about him... Just a thought.

Ben does fit, he’s older, he has a reason to keep away from K because K would recognise him. He can’t be Bredon, at least not without being a master of disguise — and Bredon is personality-wise nothing like Ben. Scarpi, maybe?

Wicked Kinetic thinks Master Ash might be a priest, because of Pupper’s puppet show:

ndicates that Denna’s patron might be an incognito priest in the Tehlin church. Given PR’s painting the church as a corrupt/false/dangerous but impotent remnant of its past power as a primary mover in the previous iteration of the current kingdom - it would only make sense that there is still a section of the Tehlin church that is also dabbling in the Creation War (or post-Creation War) or whatever you want to call what turns out to be ongoing between Amyr/Chandrian/Sithe/Singers/Fae/Tehlu/etc

I find it strange that we do not have any insight into current church members or leadership - only a glimpse that they still have power in the stories of The Trial and the Iron Law and Temic/Tema still being used, and them abducting Skarpi for ’telling the wrong sorts of stories’ or some-such.

Why wouldn’t Mr Ash be a church-figure using Tehlu-beliefs to inflict guilt and control over D

The real argument against this is that we haven’t seen any possibilities. There aren’t any chaplains or priests or anybody really who it could be. And Rothfuss and K are both better storytellers than to have it be somebody we’ve never heard of. And Greyhood points out that the Amyr are/were part of the Tehlin church and that would be sufficient connection for the puppet. But we’re back to cui bono again.

Then CPJ wonders if it might be Caudicus:

who else might Master Ash be? I think Caudicus has been suggested somewhere or other... (visually he matches the ’priest’ suggested by Puppet a bit more closely), and it might be worth keeping track of his movements too.

Caudicus could make himself come across as a gentleman and he leaves the Maer’s presence for long periods at a time. Also, the Maer’s comment about ’which university’ makes me wonder: are were sure Caudicus attended the University... or did he attend another one...? If so, he might have quite different views on things like knowing and shaping...

One reason I wondered about this is that Kvothe doesn’t mention to anyone back at the Universtiy later on that he met this Caudicus fellow who seemed to be up to no good. Granted, a lot has gone on since then, but he probably ought to have mentioned it to Kilvin at least... it feels like an intentional ommission to avoid Kilvin: “Caudicus? Never heard of him...”, though perhaps I’m now just winding myself up in paranoid consipiracy too...

Who is Master Ash and what’s his plan? I wish I knew.


Jo Walton is a science fiction and fantasy writer. She’s published two poetry collections and nine novels, most recently Among Others, and if you liked this post you will like it. She reads a lot, and blogs about it here regularly. She comes from Wales but lives in Montreal where the food and books are more varied.

157 comments
Rob Munnelly
1. RobMRobM
"Who is Master Ash and what is his plan?" Very good, Leigh - back to the old childrens' tale: "What is his plan? Chandrian."

I really like the point make evident in the Chtaeh discussion last week. It said "stick" by the Maer and K will find the Chandrian - and then made very clear that what he said was a pun. As Bredon has a walking "stick" and is located near to/by the Maer, it seems pretty darned clear that either Bredon is Chandrian himself (hello, Cinder) or will attract the Chandrian to him (perhaps such as D singing a Lanre song). I'm of the camp that Bredon = Mr. Ash = Cinder and we're waiting to see what his beautiful game is.

Rob
Matthew B
2. MatthewB
While the concept of a beautiful game is certainly appealing, i can also imagine telling someone you were interested in a beautiful game in order to give you an advantage towards winning. One hand distracts while the other holds a hammer.

As i said, the beautiful game theory is appealing and seems to be shaping up nicely, but let's not lose sight of the practical issues involved in winning and losing these "games."
Robyn Oakes
3. shimmertree
Excellent summary, Jo. Thanks for all the hard work.

(Just finished "Among Others" btw. Brilliant and highly recommended.)
Kristoff Bergenholm
4. Magentawolf
We’re going to have one more bonus speculative summary post next week in which I sum up everything I think we know about the Creation War. Then the week after we’ll get on with WMF from the meeting with Felurian.

It's not exactly a bonus. :(
Skip Ives
5. Skip
@1. RobMRobM - Who is Leigh? ;) You got your re-reads mixed up, and your accents.

@2. MatthewB - I agree, also one could argue that the beautiful game is an Amyr concept. A game is only won if it is won "correctly", and by playing beautifully the truth is revealed to player.

Also, we assume the Amyr are the "good guys" because the Chandrian killed Kvothe's parents (and granted Cinder makes a good bad guy). But would Kvothe kill to protect "Kote"? If so would that make him any different than the Chandrian? As the books have repeatedly shown, the story depends on the teller, after all these are the Kingkiller Chronicles.
DEL
6. DEL
A few speculations:

D mentions at least a few times that Master Ash can give her access to things no one else can. She asks the boys at the Eolian about "magic where you write stuff down and it comes true". Later K catches her tying Yllish knots, "Your hair.. it almost says lovely"(seven words!!!).

I think D and K are the flip of the coin; joined by similar experiences, each tracing hidden stories and hidden powers for their own reasons. They both level up as the story progresses, each hiding secrets that are best shared, neither realizing each other is their best hope for the future.

Unless Bredon is a magician trick by Pat, I am well statisfied his other identity is Master Ash. He mastered his modern politics and social game, got bored and moved on to more cosmic intrigues.

Naming and changing names: I believe D and K took on the partial names of Sir Travien and Aloine. Bredon definitely has had a full life... did he also get changed through taking on a name at some point?
Rob Munnelly
7. RobMRobM
@5 - Indeed, LOL. I guess we'll have to start calling Jo "Ms. Ash." Re your comment on @2, my understanding is the opposite - if the Amyr do something, it is ipso facto deemed true/right. Means are irrelevant, and even evil things can be done "for the greater good."

Rob
DEL
8. Lackless
@1 I'm not with all three Master Ash/Bredon/Cinder because of the Cthaeh. I think I mentioned this on the previous reread, but remember, the Cthaeh says it's a twice-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Kvothe to meet Cinder. The first time was with his family; the second was with the bandits. He met Bredon over and over again, talking, playing tak - so I think Bredon/Cinder goes against the twice-in-a-lifetime statement from the Cthaeh. I'll throw out here that Bredon could be one of the other Chandrian, especially if he influenced Denna to write the song. I find it unlikely, but the Cthaeh talked only about Cinder, not the others, so it is possible.

I am, however, with Ash/Bredon. There are too many clues to ignore: the game, the walking stick, even the dancing. The question is, if Bredon is Master Ash, what is his plan? I have to wonder whether Bredon as Ash and the Cthaeh are both trying to influence Kvothe, but with different results in mind.

@6, that's six words, by the way, not seven.
George Brell
9. gbrell
I concur with @7.RobMRobM. A beautiful game is irrelevent to the greater good and, to the extent it prevents it from being achieved, antithetical. The distinction that @5.Skip might be trying to draw is that between act and rule utilitarianism, but I feel that the Amyr as written are act utilitarians.

I was able to see Jo read from Among Others last weekend and had a wonderful time. I highly recommend it to anyone, especially if you want a heavy dose of nostalgia re: 1970s science fiction (combined with a great story). Jo, it was a pleasure to meet you and I'm sorry I wasn't able to come to dinner, although I heard it was quite the event.
DEL
10. Silkki
This has nothing to do with this weeks topic, but I think I know what El'the means.

E'lir - see-er
Re'lar listener

E and Re in this case are prefixes to transform a verb "see" (lir) to "someone who sees." Same is done with verb of "listening" (lar) to "someone who listens"

El'the probably follows same pattern, so all we need to figure out is what "the" means. Luckily we know from NW that Kvothe means "to know."

Kvo'the - to know
El'the - someone who knows, or in this case, knower! Other group in creation wars any1?
Anthony Pero
11. anthonypero
Ash is one of the trees used in burying "demons" and making sure they don't come back. SO, if Kvothe naming Mr. Ash is referring to the Ash tree, wouldn't this have significance? Seems that Mr. Ash might be someone holding back the Scrael and other things we see in the frame.
DEL
12. AndyW
@10 Re'lar means speaker, not listener. But I still think 'knower' fits.

There was some discussion about Rhinna (the panacea from the Chteah), Rhinta (Adem word for Chandrian), rhintae (what the skindancer asks Chronicler if he is), and rhinata (from the door to the archives roughly translated as "the desire for knowledge shapes a man"). Someone thought this root meant man, but I think it means shape. The panacea shapes (i.e. creates or changes), the Chandrian are the Shapers, the skindander is trying to find the Shapers, and with knowledge a man can Shape.
DEL
13. Silkki
@12 erm yes. my bad there
Claire de Trafford
14. Booksnhorses
Ok. You've convinced me that Bredon is more sinister than I thought (although that was when I was merrily trotting through the books feeling impressed I'd noticed a few things :) and probably Ash.

I don't really care if he is a good guy or a bad guy as long as Denna gets to do something more interesting and kick ass; still not really feeling the love there.
DEL
15. mr. awesome
Probably the etymology of the word for man is similar to the word for Shap(er/ed) because the division between men and fae was created at some point, according to Felurian. I think the idea of a person as a Shaper makes sense, especially given the importance of Shaping in those early times.
Melanie S
16. starryharlequin
Lackless @8: the Cthaeh says it's a twice-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet Cinder again, actually, which could be interpreted to mean they have met (or will meet, as anthonypero said) a total of 3 times. Your point about the many meetings with Bredon is well taken, though, and I think is a strong piece of evidence against Bredon=Cinder. Like you I do think Bredon=Ash.

Silkki @10, I like the El'the etymology!

More generally...continuing on from georgiana89's point from post 51 on the previous thread:
Something else I was thinking was that a lot of people assume that the Ctheath is twisting the truth about Denna and her patron and the beatings. It struck me that it could be entirely true, with no redeeming angle, and that whilst Kvothe intervening to save Denna would be the "right" thing to do (as no one wants to leave a women to be regularly beaten) it could still be a disatrous thing for the world, eg. if her patron was important and Kvothe killing him started a war
Well, gosh, if her patron is Bredon and Bredon is currently/ends up king of Vintas and Kvothe kills him for his treatment of Denna... (I still think Ambrose is more likely; the Jakises seem to be taking out the competition, between the family lost at sea and Caudicus mentioning his visit to their family estate.)

I also don't think Ben is likely to be in the Cinder/Bredon/Ash nexus. The line about the situation that causes him to leave the Ruh (couldn't have laid a better trap, or whatever it was--don't have the book in front of me) seems to indicate we're going to find out about his horrible demise in DT. I also don't think Caudicus is involved, because of the connection to the Jakis family, which seems to be a separate plot thread (though one can never really tell).
DEL
17. Goldberry
I think that the theory about Ben is, while unlikely, important. Ben may not be Bredon or Mister Ash, but he has to be important- he's central to the first part of the book. We know that after only a brief debut, Skarpi will come back, so I think that we'll be seeing Ben again. I also have the feeling that he is related to what's happened so far- maybe he's associated with Skarpi or something.
Speaking of Skarpi, I don't think that he's an Amyr. If he is what does that say about the Chronicler? We know that they're associated. Is the Chronicler an Amyr himself? Or is he just on their side? I just don't think that Kote would entrust his life story to someone who he knows was sent by an Amyr, especially if he killed an angel. I could be wrong, and K could be completely on the side of the Amyr, which would be why he was hated, but I just doubt it. I get the impression that Kote turned away from the greater good, especially when he offers to tell a seemingly random boy an important story that might hurt the good of the country or army but would aid the individual. So, I doubt that Skarpi is Amyr, but for the obvious reasons, Chandrian seems unlikely as well, which would put Skarpi in the neutral territory, with Bredon (possibly).
Anthony Pero
18. anthonypero
Or, Goldberry, K has no intention of letting C live. Maybe K is setting a trap, and C is the first one caught.
DEL
19. Shakescene21
Wow! There are some amazing insights here. I had concluded that Bredon was probably Mr. Ash, but now I'm further convinced that Bredon=Ash=Cinder. I suspect that in DT we'll learn that Bredon/Cinder has been playing a wicked "beautiful game" that will involve Kvolte in some horrific deeds.
DEL
20. bp
Why can't Bredon be a traitorous Amyr? There are many groups of Fae, with different agendas. And there are different groups of people. Why couldn't there be an Amyr that believed that the right path to fight the Chandrian is to remake Lanre.

Remember the Bast discussion of beauty--what you describe someone as, becomes their nature. Love _makes_ someone beautiful. What does a story of Lanre the honorable do to the Chandrian?

I don't think this last one is really true, but fun speculation. I would be pretty certain that Bredon is an Amyr (hence Puppeteer's puppet is of a churchman), and that he is Mr. Ash, and has his own motives.

I am a believer in theme, so I think this story (so far) of Kvothe's arrogance will be reflected in teh arrogance of the Amyr. And that the path Bredon is trying to walk is completely wrongheaded. But we will see.

Speaking of that, when will we see?
Alice Arneson
21. Wetlandernw
Goldberry @17 - Chronicler is hardly "a seemingly random boy" - and I can only assume you're referring to Chronicler, given the context. First, we know he's the author of the book we saw in NW about the draccus. Second, and far more important, when he tells Kote who he is, Kote says something like, "Not a chronicler, the Chronicler." He is known to K not only by his real name, but by reputation as the Chronicler as well.

(And if you're instead referring to the random boy who showed up at the inn the day before, K didn't tell him any stories. If you're referring to someone else, please clarify.)
DEL
22. Lackless
@21, 17 is talking about Aaron, whom Kvothe attempted to save from war by promising him the story. It didn't work because Aaron thought he was lying.

@16, I took it to meant that he would meet Cinder one more time in the future, because at the time the Cthaeh said it, he had met Cinder twice, and the Cthaeh is making the point that he wasted his opportunity. At the same time, it is trying to set him up for a final (and possibly disastrous) meeting with Cinder. Remember also the significance of the number three in the books - a lot of things come in threes. Three-part names (Maedre, Saicere, possibly Cthaeh), "I am telling you three times (what they say when they want to be serious)," Taborlin's three items (key, coin, candle), and Kvothe even admits, just after he returns from Fae when he is telling stories to the people at the inn that (and I quote):

"At the end I bested Felurian but spared her life. In her gratitude she wove me a faerie cloak, taught me secret magics, and gave me a silver leaf as a token of her favor. The leaf was pure fabrication, of course. But it wouldn’t have been a proper story if she hadn’t given me three gifts."

I'm sure there are many more examples, but those were the ones I thought of right now. To sum it up, I think it would be especially fitting if he met Cinder a third and final time with the intention of killing him. That's what I think the Cthaeh is setting up.
Alf Bishai
23. greyhood
If Bredon was being tried in court for being Master Ash, he’d be convicted. The wolf head is particularly blatant for me. “A man and a fae are as different as a dog and a wolf.”

Thanks, Jo, for including one of my posts - even a slightly mangled one! I was mixing up Master Ash and Fae mid-thought. I meant the evidence for Bredon being Ash is damning (stick, dancing, appearing/disappearing with Denna&Ash, white hair, social status, mysterious personality in general, concealed agenda) - and the evidence for him being Fae is suggestive (wolf head on stick, tak, pagan frolics, goat feet, always naked).
Alice Arneson
24. Wetlandernw
While I have to admit that the case made for Bredon being Master Ash is pretty strong, I'm still not quite 100% convinced. I hope it turns out to be true, if only so that all the speculation here doesn't turn out to be sand on the garden path. :) I'm far less convinced that Cinder is the same person (as either one, should they turn out not to be the same). Lackless @8 gave some pretty good reasoning on that which supports my gut reaction.

The glimpse of Bredon's ability to be absolutely ruthless if he wants (destroying Kvothe at Tak), surrounded by his otherwise-consistent persona of the kindly gentleman, is the thing that absolutely convinces me that he is at least something more than he appears. Whether or not the circumstantial evidence for Master Ash as his alter ego turns out to be valid, he's clearly going to matter in the next day's story. IMO, the best argument for his being Denna's patron is the need to keep the cast under control. Obviously there are several people who are going to be really significant in D3:

Kvothe (duh)
Auri
Denna
Bredon
Denna's patron (Master Ash)
Cinder/the Chandrian
The king who is (presumably) killed by Kovthe
The Penitent King who (presumably) replaces the one Kvothe kills
Ambrose (I just can't see him fading into insignificance at this juncture)
Maer Alveron
Meluan
The Amyr

(I think I left out a few, but I'm drawing a blank now.)

I think some of those people have to overlap, or you've got too big a cast of characters for the size of the story. PR has been quite clear that this is only going to be three books, but there are a lot of clues lying around that need to be wrapped up. One of the things I think PR has done extremely well is to not only make each of his characters matter, but also to keep them from getting away from him. Because of that, I don’t think that many different individuals can be as significant as they’ve been set up to be.

I don't see Denna, Auri, Meluan or Kvothe overlapping with any of the others, but that leaves us 7 (or probably more) players who will affect the story in very significant ways - to say nothing of the many minor characters who will have their own significant contributions. I think PR has too much control over his story to leave all those people as "loose ends" to be tied up in D3. So here are some of my guesses...

I think it's quite probable that Bredon is Denna's patron, as well as possibly (?) the king to be killed. (I also suspect that Ambrose will be part of that game - possibly that Kvothe will fall for a trap set by Ambrose which results in Kvothe doing the deed or at least taking the blame for killing the king.) My guess is that the Maer will also be the Penitent King. Those combinations would reduce the list by a few:

Kvothe (duh)
Auri
Denna
Bredon = Denna's patron (Master Ash) = The king who will be killed
Cinder/the Chandrian
Maer Alveron = The Penitent King
Meluan
Ambrose
The Amyr

That’s more or less off the top of my head. I’d love to hear what characters others would add to (or remove from) the list of “significant players” for D3 – and especially how some of the projected roles might be filled by known characters.
DEL
25. Lackless
@24 Wetlandernw, I like your analysis. I also might add Elodin to the list, considering he is Kvothe's mentor in Naming, which we know will be vital in D3. Not to mention the fact that he is a very interesting character, what with his backstory and his general behavior.

Devi is a possibility, but she may turn out to be more of a minor character. The same could be said of both Sim and Wil, although if Sim does somehow manage to become king, he would immediately be on the list.

Also, you've omitted the frame story. I think Bast could be very important, and since we don't know when Kvothe meets him, he could appear near the end of the inside story. Even if he doesn't, he's one of the most important characters in the entire book. He influenced the divulging of the story in the first place, and he also intends to bring Kote out of his shell, which could be extremely important at the end, maybe even throughout, D3.

I considered both Skarpi and Ben, as either or both could have an important part to play. But since they have been only minor characters so far, and there is no substantial evidence that either will make a dramatic return, they are probably best left off for now.

Then there is the Cthaeh. It could be argued that it is the most important being in the series because of the way it can influence events. Still, I'm not sure it has a place on the list of important characters. It hasn't really been developed as a character in its own right, and it's fairly obvious anyway that the (supposedly) all-seeing Cthaeh is going to have a substantial impact on the events of D3.

The title of D3 is almost certainly going to be The Doors of Stone. We know, at the very least, that the Doors of Stone are important. Felurian tells Kvothe that Iax is behind those doors. If the doors are open, Iax himself could become a very important character. Still, for the same reason as some of the other characters I've mentioned, I don't think he belongs on the list, because he's played no direct part in the story as far as we've seen (the only references to him are in Hespe's story, from Felurian, and possibly in the Creation War). We don't know enough about him.

That's it for characters I've considered for the list. In terms of the characters on the list that I might not include, I would say the only two are Auri and the Penitent King.

Auri could easily be another minor character with Devi, Sim, and Wil. If she is the Princess Ariel, then of course she's important. There does seem to be something fae about her, the way she talks and acts, and I'm not going to dismiss her out of hand. Still, there is a possibility, if she is not the Princess Ariel, that her "page time," per se, will be limited in favor of some of the other characters on your list. It's possible that her purpose as a character was already served - giving Kvothe a compassionate aspect to his personality, giving him an access into the archives, providing companionship, etc. I don't believe it myself, but I'm saying there is a danger that she could sink into unimportance in D3. I cannot say the same for the rest of the characters on your list, except the Penitent King:

If the Penitent King is not the Maer Alveron (who I do believe fully deserves his place on the list, what with his influence in WMF and what the Cthaeh says about him), then I don't think the Penitent King will be important at all. I think the name itself implies that he's not the Maer - can you imagine the Maer being penitent? It's possible, but seems highly unlikely to me. Moving on. There's been no definite indication I can remember that the PK replaces the killed king, although it is certainly possible, and he could turn out to be more important in the frame story (with the war that's going on) than in the inside story. Still, I think if he's not the Maer, he's going to be a minor character, even if he does succeed the killed king.

Final thoughts - you have Bredon as the king who will be killed. I haven't heard much of that theory - the most popular one is that Ambrose is the killed king - but if Bredon is, then is he already king when Kvothe meets him? If not, how/when do you think he becomes king? The most likely scenario to me is that he is a very high-ranking noble, ahead of the Jakis family, who eventually becomes king of Vintas. I don't think he can already be a king, because as far as we know, the only important king is in Vintas (King Roderick, I believe).

That's it for now. I too would love to hear other opinions.
Bruce Wilson
26. Aesculapius
First, Master Ash:

We just have SO little to go on! I think it's highly significant that the translations focus on the use of the English word "Ash" in the context of the variety of tree and NOT the residue from burning. Specifically, the ash leaf that blows into Kvothe's mouth when he's trying to make up a name for Denna's mysterious patron in NW (hmmmm - Master Ash being named *by* the Wind...?!) and, I have to agree @11, that the repeated references to ash (the tree - or wood from the tree!) in things like the rituals for dealing with demons, and invocations by Bast, would all seem to hint at a Faen connection.

It would be a nice link from "Ash" to "Cinder" and it was a reasonable leap to make but the specificity of the translations would seem to suggest that this is not the direction we're going.

I'm fully with Jo in this: just who *is* Ash - and what could his purpose be? His interest in Denna seems to pre-date any possible direct involvement with K and the retcon of Lanre is almost designed to be deliberately confusing! What's interesting, though, is that Denna states quite plainly that *she* chose the subject of her song from something she found whilst doing genealogical research for patron - although he later helped her with it. I suspect D may have been manipulated into developing this song more than she realises but the more significant part may be this: why is Master Ash quite so interested in genealogy? Just whose ancestry is he trying to establish and what else is he looking for? (the son that brings the blood, perchance? - and, if so, why?). How does this fit in with Ash being at the Mauthen farm looking for the Chandrian artefact?


Second, Bredon:

The circumstantial evidence regarding Bredon as a candidate for Master Ash is probably the strongest of any that we have - although it is just that, circumstantial. As others have mentioned many times, there are many subtle hints: the broadly consistent descriptions of Denna's patron in NW and Bredon in WMF - both in terms of appearance and bearing; the timings of Bredon leaving Severen relative to Denna not being around; the separate references to dancing by both Bredon and Denna; the pointed references to Bredon's stick (the only other character I can think of who used a stick was Alveron) followed later by the Cthaeh mentioning Denna being beaten with a stick. It all sort of fits but there's nothing concrete.

I also have to wonder just exactly who Bredon actually is; he appears to be "grandfather old" but not elderly; he has pure white hair and beard with "owlish" brown eyes; he has no colours other than grey (Ash grey and charcoal, to be precise. Hmmmmm.), his rank and role at court are both left undefined. The character serves as a mentor for K and provides exposition to both K and the reader but I can't believe that this is to be his only function. He genuinely seems not to know who K is and in his last meeting with K seems genuinely shocked by the wooden ring and the letter from Meluan. He gives no hint that he has any inkling of another possible link between K and Meluan - although who knows if this is all just part of a beautiful game...? Equally, if he is Master Ash then Denna has never linked herself to K and he also seems to be unaware of who K is in this context too. So why would he wish to involve himself with K at all...?

The rumours K is given regarding Bredon and the "pagan rituals" on his lands firstly seem consistent with confirming Bredon as a character in his own right (and not, say, Baron Jakis in disguise), secondly, they perhaps suggest that Bredon has an interest in things outside the normal Tehlin culture of Vintas (again, the Fae...? Possibly the Amyr?); there's also the location of these as being in the secluded woods outside his northern estates - back towards the Eld, perhaps...? Amyr was my initial suspicion but now I'm not so sure. The fact that he directly parallels what Bast says regarding a "gift freely given" also harks back to the Fae.

Bredon acknowledges that he once had an interest in courtly politics, and was something of a power when he was younger, but now has "no machinations to advance" which "takes the spice from such maneuvrings." Strangely, his comment about being "something of a power" in his youth made me wonder just how old Bredon actually is - and what that "power" actually was. For no good reason, it strongly reminded me of Gandalf, discussing the many names he has been given by various people, which includes a throw-away comment to the effect of: "Ólorin I was in my youth in the West that is forgotten." With deeper knowledge of the full depth Tolkien's creation, that single statement goes right to the heart of who Gandalf *actually* is; now, I'm not necessarily suggesting that Bredon is of that ilk but the way he is described as wearily acknowledging his previous involvement in court politics and his role within them just made me wonder *which* court he was referring to and just how long ago this really was. His knowledge of the various different types of rings and their meanings seems to go much deeper than most. He may mean the court in Severen and Vintas generally but what if he's actually thinking back to the Faen Courts or even one of the seven Cities...? Could Bredon, perhaps be the one who didn't betray his city; forever isolated...?

Anyway, wild speculation aside, I expect to see rather more of Bredon in D3 and I now suspect he is likely to have Faen rather than explicit Amyr or Chandrian connections. He's still my prime suspect for Master Ash - but no more than that.
Melanie S
27. starryharlequin
Lackless @25:
although if Sim does somehow manage to become king
Do we know if Fela is noble? He could marry her and end up the High King of Modeg, perhaps?


Aesculapius@26: you've convinced me Bredon isn't Baron Jakis, and I like your genealogy angle. Question, though: do we know how the gossip that Kvothe receives refers to Bredon? If it was one of the written stories (was it? I don't have the book with me), seems odd it would just be a first name. But Kvothe doesn't remark on any other identity given, which means it wasn't (and the court doesn't know either), or it was and Kvothe didn't realize the significance, or it was and K doesn't want us to know the significance.

Goldberry @17: Kvothe's version of the greater good has always seemed to be about helping powerless people, though, after he didn't help the boy in Tarbean.
Rob Munnelly
28. RobMRobM
Quick thoughts.
- have changed my mind. Yes Ash, not Cinder.
- leaning more towards Amyr theory - willing to hurt or destroy D and/or K for the greater good (perhaps a trap for the Chandrian).
- we are forgetting that in NOTW K says he saved princesses from barrows. I could see the Maer sending him on another rescue mission, it suceeds, he become friends with the King, somehow kills the King, and the Maer becomes the Penitent King - because he sent K to the King in the first place.
- I will give more thought to Wet's list but remember that Chronicler is working w Scarpi so Scarpi will play a role in D3 - possibly by curing K of what ails him, just like in Tarbean.
-excellent work on this thread by all.

Rob
DEL
29. rea
I l ove reading these threads, although msot of the analysis goes way over my head. But one thing that strikes me--are we sure this is going to be a trilogy? Because there are an awful lot of loose ends to be tied up and unexplained things to be resolved. It begins to look more like a dodecology to me . . . .
Bruce Wilson
30. Aesculapius
@27:

Yes, the rumours about Bredon come to K amongst the things that people write down and send to him once it becomes known at the court that he's (supposedly) looking into family histories.

K simply reports that the rumours refer to Bredon; he doesn't mention exactly how Bredon is named in the document(s). For that matter, we don't know what part of his name (if any!) "Bredon" actually is. The Maer is referred to as "Alveron" so Bredon may be his family name for all we know.

It did occur to me that Bredon could be either genuinely who he says he is, entirely fictitious or there may be a *real* Bredon elsewhere but who is being impersonated by the person K meets. If someone was playing a particularly complex game then they could be manipulating this; if Bredon is *not* who he says he is then, for example, he could be submitting false rumours about "himself" (directly or through someone else), which would appear to make the assumed character of Bredon more "real" or the rumours may pertain to the "genuine" Bredon, far away on his estates, but have nothing to do with the man K meets at the Maer's court.

Wheels within wheels...

I stopped at that point because that's how conspiracy theories spiral out of control - and this way madness lies...!!

For now, I'm inclined to take Bredon at face value but keeping one eye open for subterfuge! Even then, if we assume he is who he says he is, we still know very little about him personally and have no real indication as who he *really* is in terms of rank, role, family, history...!
Steven Halter
31. stevenhalter
I am in the Bredon = Mister Ash camp. There seem to be too many little pieces for it to be just a red herring.
I don't think that Bredon = Cinder. For the various reasons others have given above but also because it doesn't feel correct. Cinder seems very much a piece that is moved about rather than a full player. An important piece, but he didn't seem to have the depth of personality that Bredon seems to have. Admittedly, we haven't seen much of Cinder but the few brush strokes we have seen don't paint the same portrait as Bredon at all.
DEL
32. RoryB
@28 -I think D is the princess.

At the end of Chapter 73 of NotW, K and D discuss the location of that ill-fated wedding. "We made our way back to the top of Barrow Hill...." K quite clearly goes on to save D from the 'dragon' in and around this location.
Rob Munnelly
33. RobMRobM
@32. Interesting if true, but I believe NOTW refers to plural princesses. (Text is at home so I can't check).
DEL
34. RoryB
@ 33 -- might not be as solid as I first thought (shame, it was a nice a-ha! moment). However:

"I have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Trebon. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and life. I was expelled from the University at a younger age then most people are allowed in. I tread paths by moonlight that others fear to speak of during the day. I have talked to Gods, loved women, and written songs that make the minstrels weep. You may have heard of me."

There might be a sliver of something here, as the list seems to be chronological for the most part.
Rob Munnelly
35. RobMRobM
@34 - "talked to Gods...." Not Felurian, as she is separately mentioned. Who? The Chthaeh? Skarpi? Tehlu masquerading as someone? The Chandrian? Bredon? Auri?
Jo Walton
36. bluejo
Magentawolf: I know. Sorry.

Silkki: I like that! But it's not in "Vorfelen Rhinata Morie". Of course, it could be a different language...
DEL
37. RoryB
@35 - That's the part that makes me view the list as loosely chronological. (You can argue that we've seen him expelled before he meets Felurian, but since that punishment was suspended I think its still an open question.)

Allowing for that we get:

NotW: Stole princesses; burned down Trebon
WMF: Felurian; expelled(?)
Day3: expelled(?); talking to Gods.
DEL
38. Lackless
@27, I didn't consider Fela as a possibility. She could be of a high rank in Modeg, but you'd think she would have mentioned it. Even if she is, and she's hiding it, it's unlikely that Sim could become King of Modeg by marrying in. Kingship usually passes to the most blood-worthy man. A queen may marry into the position, but rarely a king, unless it is a queendom and not a kingdom (which I don't think Modeg is).

Here's a conversation between Wilem and Kvothe in WMF:

“The problem is his father,” Wilem explained in low tones as we made our way between the grey buildings. “Sim’s father holds a duchy in Atur. Good land, but—”
“Hold on,” I interrupted. “Our little Sim’s father is a duke?”
“Little Sim,” Wilem said dryly, “is three years older than you and two inches taller.”
“Which duchy?” I asked. “And he’s not that much taller.”
“Dalonir,” Wilem said. “But you know how it is. Noble blood from Atur. Small wonder he does not speak of it.”

So even if he's not a powerful noble, he's still a high-ranking one, and could possibly become available for kingship somewhere. It's a longshot, I'll admit, and right now I see Ambrose as the king. Ambrose vs. Sim has been discussed in a previous reread.
DEL
39. TheFacelessMan
Side thought but related to Bredon/Ash/Cinder theory.

So Kvothe is in self imposed exile. Whether this is a part of his game or something he was forced or felt compelled to do remains to be seen. However, along with his exile we, or I for sure, have always somewhat assumed that in the frame Kote/Kvothe is working alone. The exception being Bast of course but he seems more interested in his own goal then any he may or may not know about Kvothe's plans/end game.

We have experienced many mentors and teachers being present through Kvothe's story. Ben being the first and to me most unlikely but obviously important. Randomly a Tinker who is also an Arcanist and student of the University happens upon a Ruh troupe where he finds Kvothe? He then decides to stay on with them even though most Tinkers seem to be solitary and constantly moving? Granted the troupe moves around quite a bit so it would still serve Ben's needs and role. It fits with the Tinker mold to bring something what is needed even if they didn't know it (Kvothe and his first taste of magic, knowledge, and what was possible in the world.) However, it seems obvious to me that he didn't just stumble upon Kvothe. He was there to help set him upon the path to his power and time at the University. Much like Skarpi was placed to "wake" him after his parents were murdered. He had to spend time in Tarbean learning valuable lessons and skills but was conveniently meeting Skarpi when he was (just about) old enough to start his journey to the University? Flash forward and we meet Tempi who will introduce him the the Adem and the Lethani. Convenient that he happened to meet one of the more open and curious Adem who started him on that path? I'm not saying Tempi was in on it specifically but someone else may have thought the meeting of the two was a good thing.

This is all to say I find that there are forces outside of Kvothe's knowledge working upon him. Perhaps he is aware of them more now in the frame and perhaps not. Long story short couldn't Bredon (even if he is Master Ash, less so if he is also/or Cinder) be a mentor to him as Kvothe or even an ally now? We seem to think if there is a link between Bredon and these other personas that he is sinsister but perhaps he is teaching Kvothe things he needs to know. Even using others (D) to teach him these lessons. These lessons may be tragic and hard to withstand (death of D/friends or just losing her/them) but perhaps all for the greater good. Shaping Kvothe into the hero he needs to be or the catalyst that is desired?

Also, who else might be helping Kvothe/Kote? No one else might have interconnected interests to his? Seems unlikely. I think this game is too big for there to be just two players (as most of us seem to think anyway) but it isn't just Kvothe VS. Chandrian. Each side is going to have heroes and allies. I can't wait to find out who happens to be which.
DEL
40. mr. awesome
I think Sim will do something against K in the next book that will break Sim's heart to do, and that he'll do it because he's trying to save people. I think Sim will betray Kvothe either to help Fela or to pursue a greater good.

The greater good bit might not seem probable, but I feel that Sim is developing into a more and more mature character as the books go on. I think that his praise of Kvothe in the library (for quieting the talkers) indicates that he'll get over his reluctance to pursue the greater good.

Something tragic is going to happen to Sim. He is too happy and childlike and innocent, but at the same time he is extremely intelligent and capable. This leads me to think his decision will also be noble, at least in his eyes. This makes me think that he'll be complicit in betraying K, although I think Denna will play a more active role in the betrayal.

Also, for Denna to truly betray Kvothe, I think they need to get back together again. They need to make up and get to know each other better if she's going to break his heart completely, the fight they've already had doesn't seem like it would be strong enough to do the job.
Jeremy Raiz
41. Jezdynamite
Side note, joke: being from Australia, I giggled like a child when I read the iocaine powder quote.

In honour of the next meeting between K and Cinder, I bet K says to Cinder (in whatever accent that resembles a spanish accent in FC):
"Hello, my name is Kvothe son of Arliden. You killed my father. Prepare to die!"

Though I highly doubt Cinder has 6 fingers on his right hand. ;-)
George Brell
42. gbrell
A general point about important characters.

Rothfuss says in one of his interviews that Auri, Devi and Ambrose were all later additions to the story. Interestingly, Lorren was apparently one of the original characters in the story (and Kvothe's best friend at the University). Whether that means they are important or not is anyone's guess.

See: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_U7SzMJkY0
(at 7:05ish)
*If you haven't watched these interviews, both very entertaining and provide some interesting info about Pat and the books.

@20.bp:

Remember the Bast discussion of beauty--what you describe someone as, becomes their nature. Love _makes_ someone beautiful. What does a story of Lanre the honorable do to the Chandrian?

It's not what you describe someone as, it's what they see themself as. This is the central point of Vonnegut's Mother Night (his best novel, IMO). That is why Bast says:

"If you tell her she's beautiful, she'll think your sweet, but she won't believe you ... But there's a better way. You show her she is beautiful. ... Suddenly the story she tells herself in her own head changes. She transforms. She isn't seen as beautiful. She is beautiful, seen.

In order for the story to change the Chandrian, they would have to believe they were actually fallen heroes. Ignoring the cliche response, I wouldn't be able to read Haliax as believing himself heroic.

What the story does do, however, is make Selitos (and by proxy, the Amyr) into a tyrant. If enough people believe that, perhaps the order begins to see itself as tyrannical or they begin to doubt their own judgment about what is for the greater good. That would begin the decline of the Amyr, I think.

@29.rea:

Rothfuss has said in interviews, most recently after WMF's came out, that this is three books. He will likely write more in this world (including his novella/novel about Laniel Young-Again), but this story is three books.
DEL
43. wickedkinetic@yahoo.com
Given the number of people hunting the Chandrian - I'm thinking the players of the larger game are not 2-sided good vs. evil, but more complicated than that.

I also have a real hard time believing that anyone would leave Kvothe on the streets of Tarbean as an education - unless he is some kind of immortal and no harm could come to him. Given the fact that harm does come to him, and he comes near death a few times, and no saviour ever comes to rescue him - well - I just don't think it holds up. If he is someone's (Ben/Skarpi/etc) valuable tool in a greater game, its a pretty huge risk to leave him sleeping on the roof, begging for scraps, and running for his life from cops and bullies from time to time.

I always thought Bredon's comment about how he can't climb any higher playing courtesan politics is a definite tell that he is someone very significant, he's hit his glass ceiling whatever that is. I don't think he can be THE king though, on account of some of the other gossip-mongers chasing Kvothe would have traded that info for access or info from Kvothe. Also, King's tend to stay pretty busy running kingdoms, not spending a bunch of time playing tak with teenage wizard rockstars.....
Jeremy Raiz
44. Jezdynamite
@42.gbrell:

Thanks for the 3 part interview link. Very interesting. He certainly gets mightily frustrated at being asked questions he feels he's been asked before. But I didnt know Devi, Auri, Ambrose and Lorren were characters he added in after his initial first drafting of the whole story.

Watching this interview opened my eyes to how much he reworked both books before publishing. He says in the 3rd part of the interview that in book 3, he still has significant "constructng" work to do on the story. I wouldn't be surprised if both Bredon and Cinder were red herrings for Master Ash.

Random thought about Cinder:

A thought that just occurred to me: since Cinder just got recently shot in the leg with an arrow, I wonder if he would now be using a walking stick to get around (if in fact he is even injured)?
DEL
45. Lackless
@44. very interesting last thought, but there is no indication that Cinder is in any way harmed by the arrow, and since he's not even human, I have a hard time believing he would need a walking stick after being shot in the leg. Plus, and I don't think I've mentioned this before, but Cinder really doesn't seem like the dancing type to me.
Jeremy Raiz
46. Jezdynamite
@45 - thanks for your thoughts. We have different ideas about Cinder not being the dancing type.

Someone who is described as Quicksilver rolling from a jar, like mercury, fluid and graceful in his everyday movements, I think Cinder could be a very good dancer (as Denna states about her patron). Just because someone likes petty cruelties doesn't exclude them from liking to dance.

Do you have any other reason to believe Cinder wouldn't like to dance?

I don't think Denna actually says she is teaching her patron to dance? Please correct me if I'm wrong, I can only find reference to Bredon telling K that he is learning to dance.

It feels reasonable to me that Cinder (who is probably older than 3000 years old), being a leader/hero of one of the 7 destroyed cities, would know how or need to know how to dance before he betrayed his city. I think someone worked out that Lanre was about 2000 years old when he betrayed Selitos, I wonder how old Cinder was at the time. Surely an adult with court dealings, given his status in his respective city.

Someone like Shehyn (who is a sword fighter like Cinder), who is described by Kv to be more graceful than Felurian dancing, you'd think that Cinder would be just as graceful, if not more graceful than Shehyn.

I think the art of dancing is a natural progression from Ketan-like movements that the Adem perform. And I'd hazard a guess that Cinder is a better swordsman than most, if not all, of any individual Adem.

But these are all just guesses by me. No proof, just speculation.
DEL
47. Lackless
@44. very interesting last thought, but there is no indication that Cinder is in any way harmed by the arrow, and since he's not even human, I have a hard time believing he would need a walking stick after being shot in the leg. Plus, and I don't think I've mentioned this before, but Cinder really doesn't seem like the dancing type to me.
DEL
48. Lackless
Sorry about that. For some reason, every time I try to post a comment, my computer reverts to the old one. I had to use a different web browser to post this one. Anyway, here's the quote:

Denna tapped a finger against her lips thoughtfully. “He’s a surprisingly good dancer. I think I can say that without betraying anything. He’s quite graceful,” she said, then laughed at my expression. “I’m doing some research for him, looking into old genealogies and histories. He’s helping me write a couple songs so I can make a name for myself. . . .” She hesitated, then shook her head. “I think that’s all I can say.”

Denna isn't teaching Ash to dance; she just tells Kvothe he's good at it. That's another connection between him and Bredon.
DEL
49. mr. awesome
Denna is even lamer than we thought if she doesn't notice that her patron is also an evil demon.
Jeremy Raiz
50. Jezdynamite
@48 - I agree with you that I don't think Cinder was in pain when he was shot in the leg and he withdrew the arrow. But maybe he needs a walking stick till his leg heals after the battle adrenalin wears off? I really doubt it too...but I'm throwing it out there anyway.

Also, the Cthaeh encounter happens only 5-7 days (in the mortal world timeframe) after Cinder is shot in the leg. And the Cthaeh also says "Two days ago he used his walking stick. That was new." Could the phrase "That was new" actually refer to a new walking stick (Cinder), or that using the walking stick itself is new behavior because he'd only just started using a walking stick (Cinder)? Or simply that using his "existing" walking stick was new behavior (Bredon)?

In terms of dancing, I would have thought that this text...

Denna tapped a finger against her lips thoughtfully. “He’s a surprisingly good dancer.
I think I can say that without betraying anything. He’s quite graceful,"

...means her patron can already dance and is quite graceful. As opposed to Bredon who is just learning. And I wonder how graceful a dancer Bredon can be (especially when he'd probably be the lead - no sexism intended; or be dancing solo) when he needs a walking stick to get around? FYI Cinder hadn't been shot in the leg at the time Denna made the dancing comment about her patron.

Rothfuss is brilliant at giving us so many red herrings throughout the books....it's great. I'm probably wrong about my suppositions, but I love a good debate.
Jeremy Raiz
51. Jezdynamite
@49 - If it should be obvious to most people that Cinder is an evil demon, and if Denna's patron is Cinder, yes, I'd agree Denna would be really lame.

The Cthaeh says that the Chandrian "have a lot of experience hiding those telltale signs."

In case you're not joking, I dunno where it says Cinder is a demon? Or even that he's evil.

What are the Chandrian's intentions? Are they evil? I don't know. Good vs evil strikes me as something too simplistic for the storyline. Are the Amyr good or evil because they act "for the greater good"?
Saldaña Leopoldo
53. Earendil
@10 I've always think that El'the means The one who listens. That's the highest level of awakening of the sleeping mind, to listen the world

“I found this cave when I was out chasing the wind,” the old man said. “I decided to stay because this place is perfect for what I do.”
“And what is that?” Jax asked.
“I am a listener,” the old man said. “I listen to things to see what they have to say.”
Alf Bishai
54. greyhood
Not sure if anyone is interested in how Master Ash signals D. There may be a clue in here somewhere. In Trebon D refers to the signal but says it isn't very sinister. My thought is that D's ring was sympathetically linked to something Ash holds. So when Ambrose took the ring, she was really in trouble. When K returns the ring, D is underwhelmed. It was too late. She had been chewed out. D also shows interest in the sympathy demonstration, noting that this is how the bell signal worked in Kellin's apartment. My thought is that Ash used a kind of morse code via the sympathetic link with her ring.

I don't think anyone would be surprised if Ash was a master of sympathy, etc. Bredon? Rings?
Anthony Pero
55. anthonypero
How about Lorren as Mr. Ash? I always thought it was someone from the University, a Master, until Bredon came around... maybe Bredon is a red herring to throw us off of Lorren... or Hemme? Why did Branduer expect Hemme to be wearing a protective gram in tNotW during Kvothe's Sympathy demonstration in Hemme's class? What is going on with those two? Haven't seem much speculation on that.
Katy Maziarz
56. ArtfulMagpie
"Why did Brandeur expect Hemme to be wearing a protective gram in NotW during Kvothe's Sympathy demonstration in Hemme's class?"

I assumed that would be like asking a woodshop teacher why he wasn't wearing safety goggles, lol.
Anthony Pero
57. anthonypero
Do we hear about other Masters wearing grams during classes, expecting malfeasance? I took it as something much murkier... especially giving the overheard nature of the comment... and Rothsfuss is not known for filler.
Anthony Pero
58. anthonypero
Also, i don't think to that point we'd had an explanation of what grams were, so... if the comment is just meant to illustrate how foolish Hemme was, it wasn't effective, because we didn't know what they were talking about at the time.
DEL
59. mr. awesome
The Hemme scene is really odd because Rothfuss still hasn't explained why K got such a good sympathic link. Even the text itself points out that K somehow violates the laws of physics, which means Rothfuss is going to resolve this at some point. I just can't figure out how.
George Brell
60. gbrell
@55-59:

The most interesting line is Brandeur's: "We should all take precautions. . . . You know as well as -"

This seems to confirm anthonypero's comment that something appears to be going on behind the scenes. This also implies that the danger is not purely related to sympathy since all the Masters should take precautions.

@59mr.awesome:

You are correct that Kvothe's link strength is unexplained. We should also note that Kvothe manages to do a number of things with sympathy that appear to work better than they should (the draccus, the lightning strike).
DEL
61. Richard Hendricks
Perhaps Bredon/Ash's intent with D's version of the Lanre story is for it to act as a smoke-screen.

D creates the perfect tragic song about Lanre, where he isn't such a bad guy. Sings it, and it immediately spreads like wildfire...

What kind of effect would this have?

Well, Haliax has shown an ability to hear his name spoken. He might approve or ignore D's song since it paints him in a favorable light. But, B/M A's plan is to have this song become so popular that Haliax's ability is negated - so many are playing D's song, now he can't hear others plotting/executing a plan against him, perhaps using his Name in some way.

That would be an interesting end to the Lanre saga, wouldn't it? Reviled as a villain, who kills all who mention his name, until a new song/story is written that makes him a tragic hero(maybe?), which ends up causing his demise.
DEL
62. TheEightChandrian
I am convinced Mr Ash could be Bredon, but the idea of Skarpi and Ben sounds interesting.
We've been fooled before (at least I was) with Denna being just a minor character and then BOM! She's there again, the same may happen with Ben...
And with Skarpi, in NW K mentions him as if they were close, when so far they've only meet twice at Tarbean and briefly.

And if Bredon isn't Ash it doesn't matter he's still important, PR has mentioned "every word has to earn it's place in the book" (or sth like that) so Bredon must be important. Perhaps he is trying to manipulat K, maybe his pagan frolic is related with the Doors of Stone, trying to find a way to connect the Fae with 4c again... I can see Bredon making K participate in some kind of ritual and that is the reason "demons" roam 4c again, like the scaraps and the skin dancer in NW
Christoph Hartwig
63. FabricatedTruth
Just a minor comment on the idea that Caudicus might be Denna's patron. It has probably been mentioned before, but before Denna plays her song for Kvothe she tells him that Master Ash fancies himself a bit of a historian. (Might be different phrasing, don't have the book near me.) Caudicus is the one Kvothe has to go to hear about the Lackless history and in his tower he finds a few historical texts.
Add to that the fact that Denna mentions Kvothe could have met Master Ash at the Maer's Court and that I can easily see Caudicus hitting a woman, and I think there is about as much evidence there for him being her patron as for Bredon.
DEL
64. bbq
@FabricatedTruth; I don't feel that Caudicus is Denna's patron, but the idea definitely warrants some discussion. It's mentioned a few times in the book (by a few characters, I think) that Caudicus often travels, which would make it possible for him to meet Denna in Imre, and other places.
Bruce Wilson
65. Aesculapius
Given that the matter of Caudicus was allegedly, ahem, "properly attended to" before the end of WMF then it would seem unlikely that Caudicus will be returning, whereas one suspects that further appearances by Denna's patron are likely to be significant in D3.

Now, I acknowledge the possibility that the individual dragged off to the Maer's dungeons (or wherever) by Dagon *just possibly* may not have been Caudicus, I remain wary of turning absolutely *every* discussion regarding PR's writing into a convoluted "what if..." conspiracy theory.
Rob Munnelly
66. RobMRobM
Two quick areas of thought, inspired by my ongoing re-read of WMF.
- Any reason that Auri cannot be Princess Ariel? That could be one reason Elodin was so surprised by the name selected by K. Also, any reasons she can't be Faen? She sure seems like it and the moon plays a role each time she appears. Also, note that she offers to protect K after the first misfeasance attack - K treats that as part of her goofiness, but she actually might have some real power. Also, in that line, any reason she can't be Bast's sister? That certainly could be one reason that Bast is so devoted to K.
- D's pro-Lanre song sounded like the latest chapter is someone's (Amyr's?) attempt to rewrite history. The key earlier example was the different versions of the history (discussed in WMF) whether the Amyr were a civil or church-based organization). We are, of course, still left to figure out who is responsible (likely Bredon in the D case) and why.

Rob
Bruce Wilson
67. Aesculapius
Yup, agreed - there's definitely something slightly other-worldly about Auri.

Rather tangential to the topic of Master Ash but what the heck...

Aside from who she is and how she lives there are all the other little things that occur with her as the story progresses: as you say, there may well be more to her offer of protection than K realised; there are the gifts she gives K that match (or even *are*...!?) Taborlin's artefacts; she promises K that they will be safe together; without prompting, she refers to K as her Cirridae and clearly understands the symbology that underlies this - and then there's her ties to the Moon, the Wind and whatever might be going on with the Underthing.

Auri may have been a later addition to PR's original story but it always amuses me to read people commenting that because she was a later addition she's therefore not significant to the overall story-arc. Just 'cos she was added later it doesn't mean that the original story couldn't have been adapted to weave her deep into the plot of the finished trilogy version of the story.

Elodin certainly knows more about her than he's letting on. It may only have been implied but I couldn't help the feeling that Elodin was more than a little amused that K was so adamantly defensive of her - like K had no idea just who (or what) he was trying to protect!

I have my suspicions about Auri...
DEL
68. bbq
@54:

I'd consider this unlikely, sympathy permanently attached to objects requires sigaldry, which Kvothe almost certainly would have noticed when the ring was in his possession.

Also, just as an interesting aside, Caudicus is seems similiar to Caduceus, which is the name of the staff carried by Hermes in greek mythology, and derived from the greek k?rukeion which means 'herald's staff'. Apparently it's often mistaken for the rod of Asclepius, the greek symbol of medicine and healing - possibly paralleled in WMF by the fact that the Maer and his court are fooled into thinking that Caudicus is a doctor whilst he is actually poisoning him. However, Caudicus also appears to be a roman name (though I can only find one reference to this), so I'm probably reading into it too much. :)
DEL
69. mr. awesome
If Auri isn't Ariel the cast of characters is going to be way to long. Also I think Auri will escape D3 unscathed. I don't really have any basis for that prediction except that I think many people will need to be eliminated but that too many deaths would be tedious, and that it would be too dark to match the tone of the series so far if Rothfuss killed off Auri.
DEL
70. mr. awesome
Irrelevant thought: if drawstone is the old name for Loden stones, it stands to reason that drawstones were gotten from somewhere other than the town of Loden.

I'm doing my own rererereread right now, so I'll probably have lots of uninteresting tidbits like this in the future.
DEL
71. mr. awesome
Perhaps by that I meant the near future.

I think I found another clue about Lanre/Haliax. When Abenthy is lecturing K for being reckless when trying to call the wind, Abenthy implies that Lanre was a powerful person who made an idiotic mistake.

Also this means that Abenthy knows a lot about Lanre.
Maybe Ben kept some information from K's parents?
Alice Arneson
72. Wetlandernw
Aesculapius @67 - I agree on the "later additions can't be significant" chuckle. One, if he felt it necessary to add the character, she's probably quite necessary to the story. Two, sometimes an author will add a new character to make a plot device more plausible; sometimes the original character who did whatever just didn't work, sometimes it's a matter of pulling several things together, and many other reasons. Whoever/whatever she is, I can't see Auri as being less than vital to the plot.
Ashley Fox
73. A Fox
@67, 72 I also agree with you. I rather think she is a lynchpin. The narrative so curiosly sets up all these major things utside of K's pespectives/pursuits. He chases the myths of the chandrian/Amyr but disregards the Lackless myths (v likely his own heritage), the moon even after Elodins hinting, Hespes' story and Felurians flagrant tale, although meeting skarpi and hearing his stories are a major turning point he takes little from them except the ref to the Amyr, when pursuing his studies in Ademre it is the ketan he most focuses on rather than the Lethani and their worries fr his morality.

Auri definately fits in with one of those things that K accepts in his life at face value but does not try to associate any greater meaning.

Of course the way that Kote tells his tale, icluding these things, suggests that his is more than aware of his youthful ignorance/bull headedness.

Though clearly even Kote has not made all the connections.

So is this a story filtered through three layers of perspectives, and we the readers trying to poke through that fourth wall?
Alf Bishai
74. greyhood
(You don't Cthaeh...)

I forgot to say this in the Cthaeh summary. Sorry. The Cthaeh tells K that he has much more to tell him. This has implications. K might not have heard enough from the Cthaeh to be manipulated successfully. It's possible that the Cthaeh knew it wouldn't be able to infect him enough but still maximized the time he had.

(Incidentally, Puppet said a similar thing. 'Bring that one back, I'm not finished with him.')

But why would it tell K, 'Wait!' when it knew K wouldn't wait? Was it just basically talking to itself at that point? Or was that line part of the poison? - it would echo in K's head and have some effect.

In any case, on face value the utterance must be true. If K had stayed, the Cthaeh had more plague-ship stuff to tell him. This tells us that it is not enough simply to talk to the Cthaeh. How much you hear is important. And K may not have heard enough to be fully manipulated.

All we really know is that the Cthaeh used the time it had with K as effectively as possible. But it simply may not have been enough, just like killing butterflies may not be enough to cause Armageddon, though it may be all you've got.

As I type this 'the butterfly effect' suddenly comes to mind. A butterfly beats its wings - a hurricane happens across the world. Analysis: The Cthaeh seems pissed that this isn't actually true.
David C
75. David_C
Is Bredon an important fae, or, to use a Tolkein-ism half-elf?

It fits with some of the clues, in particular the indeterminacy of his age, and the fact that little seems to be known about his courtly rank. Fae-in-exile perhaps?
David C
76. David_C
To others who speculate that the Cthaeh (some Canadians pronounce the first sound of "Cthaeh" like the second consonant cluster in "sixth", and the word to rhyme with "It's going to thaw, eh?") is important, I'm still firmly of the opinion that he's a Tom Bombadil, too powerful to be anything but a minor and slightly chaotic influence on the plot.
DEL
77. mr. awesome
@74 greyhood

I like the idea of degrees of freedom which is implicit in your post. A lot.

It makes sense because it seems like the Cthaeh would have needed to talk to K for only a moment in order to fully work its evil. It's unlikely that the Cthaeh would need to talk to K, but only for a few moments. It seems like the Cthaeh's power would either exist in decrees or in absolutes, and if in absolutes it seems unlikely that it would take Cthaeh so long to do what needed to be done.

Can the Cthaeh make mistakes? Like it knows it needs to do X for evil to happen, but it gets bored or malicious so it doesn't do X right away or in the right way?
Steven Halter
78. stevenhalter
@74, @76, & @77: In some fashion there has to be a mistake. This mistake can either be on the part of the Cthaeh (it is falliable in some way) or on the part of those who interact with the Cthaeh (or us, the readers)--the goals of the Cthaeh are different than what are being ascribed to it. If there ins't a mistake then it is game over, evil dominates and the Cthaeh wins with no hope of any other answer.

@74:If the Cthaeh is truly able to fully foresee every time line and its consequence, then it knew exactly what to say to Kvothe in order to get him to do the actions that will most direct the timelines into the directions that the Cthaeh wants. So, when it shouts wait, it knew that it would need to shout wait at the beginning of the conversation and the wait is needed as a little additional push.
Now, unlike what Bast says, this doesn't mean that everything that Kvothe does from that point on will work entirely to the Cthaehs advantage. What it means is that the Cthaeh has influenced him into the timelines that will most work to the Cthaehs advantage. Kvothe could still do things that the Cthaeh might not like. It has just set him on the path that is most advantages to itself. If, of course, it is infalliable and it wants a path most advantages to itself.
DEL
79. Peaceman
The Cthaeh knows the future.We assume that he tries to influence K in a bad way.But even if the Cthaeh knew how somebody reacted to his words it intails not that he can influece K so strong that he do horrible things.My reasoning is difficultly to put in words,because of my english.Maybe an example helps.

The Cthaeh see K.He manipulate him.His aim is making K do evil things.But maybe the Cthaeh look in the future and grasp the fact that it does not matter what he says K will not do evil things after talking to him some setences.So he tries to make the best of the situation before K run away.Perhaps the Cthaeh hopes that K will come back sometime.
I hope you understand what i mean.Possilbly I understood the part in the book wrong because the german WMF is devided in to two parts and the part with the Cthaeh will bei published in march. But if I understand right and the Cthaeh manipulate K so hard than the end of the trilogy is the doom of the world ?!
Steven Halter
80. stevenhalter
@79:The Cthaeh is not necessarily trying to get Kvothe to directly do an "evil" action. For example, maybe he just needs to influence Kvothe enough so that he spends a few extra minutes yelling at "Master Ash" and this makes him be too late to save Sim from a burning building.
Causing inaction can be just as harmful as causing a direct action.
Or, it could be that the Cthaeh is really trying to cause something really good to happen. It just happens that a lot of bad things need to ioccur to cause the final good result. In this case, we have misunderstood the Cthaeh.
Alf Bishai
81. greyhood
@79 Peaceman - that example is exactly what I mean. Thanks!
DEL
82. spirit theif
I think the Bredon=Master Ash fits the story most. Especially given Denna's ability to create Yllish knots.

From WMF, after Kvothe plays Tintatitornin:
Wil: "Bredon is closer to bread than beer."

Kvothe: "IT's not that bad. In the small kingdoms women drink it when they're pregnant...."

Wil: "Kvothe, we don't judge you. Sim and I don't mind that you're a pregnant Yllish woman."

So Bredon is from Yll. And Denna met him in between leaving Imre and going to Trebon in NOTW. And she left on a boat... By the way the were just unnecessary narration. And this is just my speculation. But it seems to fit so well.

About the Chandrian.
I can't wait till we get to Ademre. All those little hints we get.

So Cinder is Ferule, one of those who betrayed a city. I think that pretty much eliminates the possiblity that he is ''good." There is a bit of doubt though. "There were seven cities and one city. The names of the secen were forgotten, for they are fallen to treachery and destroyed by time. The one city was destroyed as well, but its name remains. It was called Tariniel." WMF page 844
"The enemy (Haliax) poisoned seven others against the empire, and they forgot the Lethani. Six of them betrayed the city that trusted them..." "One remembered the Lethani, and did not betray a city."

Is this the Amyr origin story? I thought that Tehlu and his angels were the order of the Amyr. But the eighth person who did not betray the city is reminiscent of the eighth figure on the Trebon vase.

I venture a guess that the eighth city is the Free City of Tinue. Jax is knew about Tinue before he created Fae, and Tinue is still a city today. Or so we assume. Why do people ask about the road to Tinue if it isn't on the Great Stone Road?
Now I'm frustrated with Rothfussian logic. I think I'll call it a day.
Anthony Pero
83. anthonypero
So, Bredon's name is the name of a beer in Yllish... that doesn't make him Yllish. My name means "priceless" in latin... doesn't mean I'm from Rome.
DEL
84. spirit theif
@84
You're right, but Rothfuss's world every name has significance. We didn't have to know that Bredon Beer is from Yll, but Rothfuss gave us that detail. Which to me gives it some small importance.

About Auri
I don't have my copy of NOTW, and I don't remember a Princess Ariel reference. Is she in any way related to the Amyr or the Lacklesses? The Maer's heir perhaps? Auri is so tied to the Amyr that it seems like she'll be leading Kvothe to them. Kvothe is her Ciridae, she knows "For the Greater Good" in Tema. THen there's the Puppet scene, where a Tehlin priest, representing the Church, hits a young girl, representing the Amyr.

I sound like a conspiracy theorist. Too much time on the internet.
Katy Maziarz
85. ArtfulMagpie
Here's the thing, spirit theif...we are NOT told that Bredon beer is Yllish. At all. We are told that Yllish women drink Bredon beer when pregnant. That doesn't say anything about the beer's origin! I mean, Kvothe is drinking Bredon beer, and he is most definitely not in Yll. There are clearly wide-ranging trade routes throughout the Four Corners. Just because some of the Bredon beer is consumed in Yll does not in any way shape or form mean that it is produced there.
Anthony Pero
86. anthonypero
Princess Ariel is mentioned one time in the frame in tWMF, in Chapter 2. K is talking to Aaron, telling him he'll tell him the truth about Princess Ariel.
DEL
87. mr. awesome
On beer: If mostly only Ylls drink Bredon beer, it's more likely than not that Bredon beer has Yllish ties. If someone is named Bredon, it's more likely than not that they have ties to Bredon beer.

I'm not a member of the camp which holds that every single detail mentioned by Rothfuss in the story is going to be incorporated into the next book or has significance in terms of the plot. However, it seems suspicious to me even at my most skeptical (perhaps I am just not very skeptical): cond, I don't think there's any evidence that calls for any particular interpretation of Puppet's puppets. It is probably symbolically important, but there are no details given which suggest any specific meaning should be ascribed to the puppets at this point. If you can warrant your claim that it describes the relationship between the church and the Amyr I'd love to see it. However, I also think you've got the power dynamics backwards. The Amyr were stronger than the church...

@86. Thoughts you've lead me to:
1. It seems odd that Aaron would know about a random princess given the ignorance of most people in Newarre (probably misspelled that) on foreign issues. Ariel was probably very important.
2. I've been assuming Ariel is still alive at the time that story Kvothe is true. I don't think that assumption is warranted. She could very well have been kidnapped a few centuries ago and K only just found out the truth. I don't remember the specific details of Ariel, but the general idea of this point probably holds regardless, which is that Ariel could hypothetically be from a few centuries ago.
3. Someone told untruths about Ariel either from ignorance or to spread misinformation.

@87. I am feeling whimsical for no good reason right now which is why this post is also whimsical. @87.
Alice Arneson
88. Wetlandernw
Lackless, Aesculapius et al – Thanks for responding to my request for thoughts on significant characters and possible combinations! (Also – I apologize for asking the question and then apparently disappearing for several days. I’ve been reading, but haven’t had the time to comment. RL happens…)

FWIW, I should say that I’m not even remotely convinced that Bredon actually is the King of anything; it’s just one of the possibilities I’ve seen, and at the time it seemed worth mentioning. :) I appreciate the point that neither the king-to-be-killed nor the Penitent King need necessarily be significant players in the story. While both will obviously be very important to the world, that doesn’t prove that they will have much page time. On the other hand, they could… I guess that’s one of my big RAFOs – will they be mostly-off-screen characters we don’t really care about, or will they turn out to be characters we’ve already met? And who else will turn out to be more significant than we (or I, at any rate) realized? Lorren, Elodin, Skarpi, Sim, Will, Devi, Ariel, Fela… There are a lot of potentially emerging players; I’m sure when we look back, we’ll see how it was all foreshadowed, but for now it seems to just be shadowed.
Jeremy Raiz
89. Jezdynamite
I don't know if this has been raised before, but has anyone brought up the possibility that Count Threpe may be Master Ash.

Some of my reasoning below:

(1) Threpe is an old gentleman (grey bearded, white hair), has lots of money and could have good reasons for his secrecy (one of which, he is a patron to 3 or more other musicians already, but I suspect other motives too). Kv describes Denna's patron as white haired and wealthy (when he thinks D left with her patron when he missed meeting her, after the Fishery fire rescue of Fela).

(2) Threpe only meets Denna after Kvothe describes her the day after he wins his pipes.

(3) Denna meets her patron at the Eolian (when Kvothe isn't there) who introduces himself to her.

(4) D and Threpe are never mentioned to be at the Eolian at the same time by Kv (one time excepted, when Kv plays the two tunes in WMF, Denna on the 3rd tier with a lord, and he spots Threpe on the 2nd tier but couldn't find him when he first looked).

(5) Threpe is the one who organizes for Kv to go to Severen to the Maer, and Denna also appears in Severen.

(6) Some of Threpe's money may come from Denner resin (he says his first name is Dennais) which could explain one of the reasons why he may be near Trebon when the Chandrian attack, as he could own the Denner resin producing site. One of his connections tell him about the Mauthen wedding and the pot/cauldron, and he sends D to get more information and he wants to see for himself? Not too sure about the part.

(7) Kv spills all the beans about D's patron to Threpe, which would be very interesting if Threpe himself was her patron. Imagine what reasons he'd have for beating D after finding out she talked to Kv.

(8) D believing that her patron does not know about Kv would be totally wrong. K feels comfortable confiding in Threpe and D thinks Threpe doesn't know Kv. Also, Threpe may have given D a job to keep an eye on Kv (which she confesses to Kv is her job during the Trebon/Denner resin journey).

(9) Threpe plays the lyre, and the instrument that Master Ash buys for D is a lyre, which Threpe could help,her with.

(10) Threpe is more than capable of helping D writing her songs, as he and Kv worked together on the Jakass, Jackass song.

However, (11) Other than Threpe being an older man, I'm not sure if he'd have a walking stick.

It wouldn't surprise me if PR hides Master Ash in clear sight, and only our liking for Threpe masks his potential role as Master Ash. I can definitely see Threpe as having a dark side and playing the beautiful game.
- -
90. The_Bloody_Nine
@89 But surely Deoch would've recognised Threpe. The first description of Master Ash we're provided with is when Kvothe turns up late to the Eolian and Deoch explains that Denna waited (for good while, apparently), but ultimately left with an elderly gentleman.

Unless, of course, this is, itself, a red herring and the person she left with turns out not to be Master Ash after all.
Jeremy Raiz
91. Jezdynamite
@90 - good point. I didn't read that part properly.

Your point about a red herring about her leaving with someone other than her patron could be my saving point... I doubt Deoch would lie about not knowing the person she left with.

Luckily, D says in a different conversation that her patron is an older gentleman and has money/clothes/bearing.
Anthony Pero
92. anthonypero
Mr. Awesome@87:

Given the context of the scene, I think it's safe to assume that the Princess Ariel story is a Kvothe story that includes a princess named Ariel. The truth doesn't mean people have been spreading lies, but that, like all of the K stories, they have drifted due to retelling. He's telling Aaron he'll tell him what really happened.

I assume the storry of princess ariel is related to the phrase in the name of the Wind when he is dramatically introducing himself: "I have rescued princesses from Barrow Wights..."
Ashley Fox
93. A Fox
Threpe? Nah. Just doesnt hold for me, the main weight of your argument seems to be that he is old and well off with a fondness for music.

It doesnt fit in with his chara' at all, he also clearly states he cannot afford another musician. Also he is a big feature of Imre and does not seem to leave it at all...even his relationship with the Maer is through letters. If Threpe is involved with any of the grander plot arcs I cant imagine it to be more than a dabbling nature.

Bredon hower, although seemingly benevolent has enough hints, clues and ambiguity surrounding him to be a strong contender.

On bredon beer. In a previous discussion (cant remember which, likely the corresponding section) I sugested a speculation that I stilll hold too.

Bredon beer is indeed the province of Bredon, a source of family income and a well known brand in the 4c's. It has a strong export in Yll especially. This would mean that the Bredon family would have strong contacts in Yll to enable this commerce. The Bredon family would then be exposed to Yllish culture.

In the text we have seen how Yll follows the old ways, is the oldest known civilisation (Elodins comments on knotwork), they were also persecuted and nearly wiped out by the Arturan Empire-a strong ally of the church during which time the amyr were in prominance.

This suggests they have something/know something certain factions left over from the creation war do not want known. They have strong connotations with fae. Perhaps they are even the Ruarch who did not choose a side-whitnesses. They certainly did not fall under the sway/lies/dogma of the church. Tehlu is not an angel, demons do not exist.

Anywho I believe that it is though this famile connection-through trade-that Bredon became intersted in the Fae..to whatever aim he is pursuing.

Perhaps his families relationship with Fae is even older...perhaps the recipe for the beer is actually faen, K makes a point of saying how individual it is in its unusual properties. It would make the fact he gves some to Auri even more interesting (perhaps its not just her gifts that have significance).

Actually.....have we been as blind as K? Is Scarpi Yllish? He certainly does nt perscribe to the church's lies (including the one that Tehlu still lives) and from our brief encounter seems to seek to dispell those lies.

Is Lorren Yllish? Or an ally. Its is strongly suggested in the text that it is he who 'rescues' Scarpi from the church in Trebon. We have long suspected there is more to him. His requestions network would be a great way to pass info along, see that certain texts/perspectives are buried in the Archives and others bought to light, perhaps to even organise those Ylls on this side of the sea.

The requsitions bloke we meet is Yllish. He assumes K is Yllish, perhaps even thinks he is involved...

Its curious how a people supposedly nearly wiped out, their country broken etc appear in everyplace, high and low, that K goes.
Ashley Fox
94. A Fox
Soz 2x posting

A little thought. Beautiful game, pieces on a board representing different people/factions. I would not be surprised if Bredon had connections to each, even some level of acceptance, but did not truely hold to their values but used them for his own agenda. Playing the feild if you like.

Much as D does which her men. Perhaps this is in part what attracted him to her.
Rob Munnelly
95. RobMRobM
@93. Yikes. I never thought that Lorren's trip to Tarbean in NOTW could have had something to do with saving Scarpi from the Church. What an interesting thought. If so, doubt it has to do with Yll, and more than it has to do with Scarpi being an ancient being and Lorren being a "good" Amyr who can save him.

Also, agree Bredon can't be Yllish but would be a noble in Vintas or Small Kingdoms with good ties to Yll (and knowlege of knots he can pass on to D).
DEL
96. mr. awesome
@93 Great job catching that Lorren's visit to Tarbean may have concerned Scarpi. That fits very well.
Felipe Martins
97. felipem
Just a though... do we have any evidence that Skarpi's story is true? As far as we know Denna has read books that say Lanre is a good guys, and all Kvothe knows about Lanre he learned from an old man at a tabern. Or am I forgetting something? I think Bast says that Lanre talked to the Chtaeh before betraying the cities, but that could be folclore, people could blame all kinds of bad things on the Chtaeh.
Note that Denna's song doesnt say anything about the Chandrian, only about Lanre and Selitos. If this is the real truth, then Selitos could be Haliax. I'm not realy convinced on this, but it sure is intresting... PR tells us on every oportunity he has that not all the narrators in his story are trustable (not even Kote... or Skarpi).
Correct me if I forgot something, please.

Also, does anyone know when the Chronicler studied at the university? After Kvothe got out, that's for sure, he tells us that. How much time does an avarage person stay at the university? 4-6 years? That could give us a better idea on how much time it's passed between the main and the frame story.
DEL
98. spirit theif
@85 Thanks for the distinction. Didn't pick up on that before.

@87
I agree that the Amyr were stronger, but that's the whole point of the conversation with Puppet. Wil and Kv make a bet about who disbanded the Amyr, but have directly contradictory facts. So they go to Puppet, where they learn that Emperor Nalto had no real power, and the Church issued a decree that formally disbanded the Amyr.

However, this doesn't mean that they've disappeared. They're just lurking in the shadows.

@89
Threpe doesn't really have any muscial talent. His real contribution to Jackass, Jackass was his political knowledge. He performs at the Eolian but plays so poorly that he has given up trying for his pipes. On the other hand, the Song of Seven Sorrows is a famous song. I wonder iof Bredon had the ability to help Denna write that masterpiece.

Last thoughts:
We are told that Kv looks too hard and misses what he's supposed to see. And since I'm at the point where I'm rereading every word for a clue I guess I have the same fault. IMO, the biggest tragedy would be if he finally sees what's been right in front of him all along, and it's been a trap, and he was too clever to win the beautiful game.
Ashley Fox
99. A Fox
@97 You raise a good point about the trustworthiness of Skarpi's stories, however imo we have to take into account the different variations of stories/comments we have had from different sources and use each to filter the next to find a aproximation of the truth.

(No.s used to signify a rough timeline)

Skarpis stories (2&4)
Ademre stories (3)
Arildens' song
Felurians tale (1)
The preists (cant remember name!)'s stories (6)
Hespes' song (1)

The Lackless ryhms (5)
Various snippets from books K reads (mostly post 6)

Little bits of history that build up over the series. (mostly post 6)

Wil's story (5 & 8?)

Odd things that Elodin, Haliax, Auri, Bast & Ctheath say (mmmm well look at those names together)

The vase

All things considered Scarpis stories seem to meld the truths cental to each story. Doesnt mean he doesnt have bias tho ;)
Felipe Martins
100. felipem
@99
Skarpi's story might not be entirely false. As you pointed out, the other stories all corroborate most points of the tale:
-The cities were corrupted by "the enemy" (Skarpi, Ademre)
-The enemy is Iax/Jax who is not Haliax (Hespe, Felurian)
-Selitos ripped his own eye out (Skarpi, Denna)
-Lanre was once a great warrior (Skarpi, Denna, Arliden)
-Lanre and Selitos fought as the cities fell (Skarpi, Denna)

We never have a confirmation that the betrayer is actualy Lanre, none of the other stories even mention him! What if Selitos was the betrayer and Lanre the good guy? Would that mean Selitos = Haliax? In that case he's not an Amyr, which would compromise Skarpi's 2nd tale.

As I said, I'm not convinced of this theory either, but the fact that Denna actualy found books and made a decent research on the subject while Kvothe only heard a tale of an old man at a tabern.... that's suspicious....
Rob Munnelly
101. RobMRobM
I had an odd and very off the point thought on the way into work on the train this a.m. - Elodin as Vashet's poet king. Discuss now or when we hit the Vashet chapters.
Steven Halter
102. stevenhalter
97-100:
We are receiving information at the tail end of a very long campaign of disinformation from several sides. We have seen that information about the Chandrian and the Amyr has been actively scrubbed from records. We see what little information is available is twisted through the lenses of 1) the gradual natural decay of information passed by word of mouth and 2) an active twisting of details from peole trying to change details for their benefit (the Tehlin church) and people trying to obscur the actual details (the Amyr) and other groups messing with information for reasons we don't know at this point.
As A Fox says @99, we can look at the points of convergence of the various stories as places that may be closest to some sort of historical fact. Of course, we are also dealing with the actual source of the obscurment of details--PR himself. I suspect he hasn't put in quite enough details to just deduce what is going on.
All of this is what makes the story so great to this point. We have a puzzle-picture painted from multuple angles. What is in the picture isn't quite clear. We don't have all of the pieces and some of theose that we have are from entirely different puzzles. But, hopefully, D3 will shed some amount of clarity and it will all fit together. Although, even after D3, I suspect, we'll have some mysteries left.
David C
103. David_C
@102 In particular, I suspect that we won't have the complete back-history.

I'm not certain that people who are trying to parse the last nuance of the Iax/Jax story are on the relevant track. To draw a Tolkien parallel, how much do you need to know about Earendil to grok (to borrow from Heinlein as well!) the Lord of the Rings? What do you need to know about Vilya?

In one sense, not very much at all. Despite the incredibly deep roots of the story, there is enough wonder in the present story. In another sense, of course, it is nice to know who holds the three rings, and to know which were the three elf-human marriages.

I contend that the same must be true of D3. We care about Auri and Sim, so the plot cannot be K playing Pandora and accidentally opening a bad box from 3000 years ago and releasing the nasty boojum. If it's really to be tragedy or eu-catastrophe, it has to be rooted in the present day interactions between K and D and perhaps the Jakis's and Auri.

Yes, what happened in the song that K and D sing together when they meet for the second might provide delicious parallels, but it's K and D that matter, not Sir Savien.

To continue the LOTR parallel, Frodo is a noble character because of the choices he makes and the challenges that he overcomes in the story. The back story of Bilbo and Smeagol and Deagol and Isuldur's mistake makes the foreground richer, but it is not the foreground.

Master Ash is perhaps a case where both foreground and background matter. D is clearly foreground, and Ash matters to what D and K do; so understanding Ash is relevant to understanding the plot. Understanding the fae may be relevant to understanding Ash (if the Fae / Ash / Bredon connection pans out). But it's unlikely that Bredon's present concerns are going to be directly related to the Jax story.
Alice Arneson
104. Wetlandernw
A quick comment on the Bredon beer discussion: the idea that it is primarily consumed in Yll and must therefore be Yllish, and that therefore Bredon (the man) must also be Yllish, is founded on almost nothing.

Kvothe has gotten Bredon beer in Imre several times without making a big fuss over it, so it's clearly readily available there. In the scene with Sim and Will, where they're giving him a hard time about drinking it, Kvothe lists some of its good properties and mentions that in the small kingdoms, pregnant women drink it for some of those good properties. One of them says something about not telling anyone that Kvothe is a pregnant Yllish woman - and that one comment is the sole connection between Yll and Bredon beer.

("I hope you like Guiness. I find it a refreshing substitute for... food.")

In addition, there's no real need for Bredon the man and Bredon the beer to be connected in any significant way. This being a novel and the product of PR's imagination, it's not likely that they have the same name by mere chance, but it's not entirely provable that the connection is quite at the level often assumed here.

Completely irrelevantly, just... in the "for what it's worth" department, when I first realized that Bredon was probably going to be a significant character, I had to recall the first literary character I met with that surname: his first name was Death. "Pronounce it any way you like. Most of the people who are plagued with it make it rhyme with teeth, but personally I think it sounds more picturesque when rhymed with breath." I wonder if PR has read that book...
Rob Munnelly
105. RobMRobM
After re-reading NoTW and WMF, I have changed my mind yet again. Not about Ash being Bredon - that is solid, IMO. I no longer believe Bredon is an Amyr. I now think he is one of the Sithe. Sithe aren't particularly defined in the text but I believe that are a faction within Fae (such as those who seek to keep people away from the Cthaeh) and are enemies of the Chandrian.

Supporting hints: Felurian says that members of the Fae can use powers and hide themselves among people; and, to K's surprise, Felurian is very familiar with the game of tak. The beautiful game scenario fits just as easily into Sithe as it does with the Amyr - he is trying to get D to create a Lanre song to pull Chandrian out of hiding so he can trap them. He is Fae so (like Felurian) he doesn't mind if humans get hurt along the way. Since he could well be hundreds of years old, he could well have taken human form years ago, perhaps replaced the real Bredon, got close to the Maer and commenced his game, whatever it is. (For all we know, he also might well be the one who hired Caudicus to poison the Maer, although I don't understand the game benefits of that move. Perhaps he needed the Maer weak and desperate so that he would be forced to marry the Lackless heir and give Bredon an opportunity to gain access to the Loclith box.)

Rob
Steven Halter
106. stevenhalter
David_C@103:I agree. The major actions of D3 will be grounded in the characters that we have become invested in. To do otherwise wouldn't make for a very interesting story.
What we are seeing in NotW and WMF are actions in the past reverberating and affecting the present. This is reinforced by the presence of long lived beings with agendas they are pursuing through that time. I fear that Kvothe and his friends are caught up in events of which they are unaware. How those events and the character driven part of the story interact will be very interesting in D3.
andrew smith
107. sillyslovene
@105- Rob,

I like this idea- it fits well into something that I've wondered about, and haven't seen a definitive answer to: why was Caudicus addicting (not just poisoining) the Maer? If he had just wanted him dead, he could have killed him at any moment with any disguised potion, or, heck, any number of ways with sympathy, etc because of his proximity/ability to grab something from him. We are shown that the guy has no problem with malfeasance. But addicting him, certainly plays into the thought of a longer game strategy- getting a hold on him that can be used in a longer play than simply brutally removing him (an action which Bredon might be ready to use if necessary, but wouldn't feel any sense of fulfillment by).

Without answering the why, it certainly fits with the 'how' of Bredon...

Personally, it makes sense to me from thematic clues that Bredon is knowledgable about the Lackless family and its box/artifacts, wants access to them, and is playing a very long game with trying to figure out how to access them. Perhaps the cultivatin of K. is directly involved with this, or maybe Bredon is just looking for something else to occupy his time while he is playing his long game as Mr. Ash (remember, if D is correct, and has told her patron nothing about her connection with K, then Mr. Ash/Bredon, might not know anything about him), which doubles the irony of K being the 'blood' helping the Maer hook up with and create another 'son who brings the blood' with Meluan...
Felipe Martins
108. felipem
@107. For some reason it's always been crystal clear for me that part, but I may be wrong... Caudicus was sent by the Jakkis to make the Maer look like a sick man that could die any time. They don't want him dead... yet. When the Jakkis' are closer to him, then yes Caudicus would apply a deadly dose of the poison, and no one would look deeper into it.
DEL
109. wickedkinetic
On Caudicus slow-poisoning the Maer - I think they wanted to destroy his chance at marriage without killing him, keeping him dependent on their Caudicus or whoever was running him. why would a delightful young lackless marry a sick old man....

On the Bredon Beer/Yllish connect - I think there are so many parallels between Ireland/Irish and Yll/Yllish in the text its impossible to ignore. The red hair, the Guinness beer, the basically exterminated/tortured/mistreated people, the strange old magics (druids or celtics anyone?) its almost impossible to deny that Ireland is the inspiration for Yll in this story. I think all the references to Yll indicate at the very least that there will be a large story impact and major reveal that ties to Yll in some way in D3.
- yllish knots on the lackless box?
- yllish knots in Denna's hair
- Bredon/Bredon beer
- Bredon / Ash ties to Denna

I know there's no real textual grounds for it - but I still like the theory that Denna (and now possible Bredon as well) are old Yllish royalty underground/exiled/in hiding and seeking to reestablish their independence or reclaim their sovereignty (more Irish ties there but that is probably a stretch - I don't think the 4 Corners has room for an Yllish Republican Army)
Rob Munnelly
110. RobMRobM
One follow up on Bredon - if he is a Sithe and can use glamourie to change his appearance, is there any reason he could not be masquerading as Count Threpe as well? Count Threpe is perfectly positioned to identify "Singers" that somehow can be used against the Chandrian in Bredon's beautiful game, including D and K. Bredon could have facilitiated an "acquaintance" between the Maer and himself as Threpe and later suggested that the Maer use Threpe to find his musical Cyrano in Imre. Bredon as Threpe might even be the one responsible for making sure that K doesn't get a patron to protect himself, as he'd be easier to manipulate without one. (It w0uld have the side benefit of limiting the number of characters PR will have to resolve in D3 - that one's for you, Wetlander).

Thoughts? Prove me wrong?

Rob
Jeremy Raiz
111. Jezdynamite
RobMRobM@110 - I really hope PR reveals one or more Singer (Tahl?) and Sithe characters in D3.

I think your theory has just as much merit as anyone else's theory that has been posted here.

I think Threpe will play a role as Master Ash and I can see merit in both Bredon and Cinder options too. I'll stick to Threpe though, Bredon and Cinder seem a bit too obvious to me and easy options for red herrings but I would love it if you were right about your theory. It would incorporate 4 character/story lines - Bredon, Threpe, Master Ash and the Sithe (and also provide us with another good way for K to be betrayed other than him being betrayed by D, the obvious choice).

Assuming you are right about Bredon/Threpe is a Sithe, do you think it is known by him that K spoke to the Cthaeh? If so, would that mean the Sithe are keeping K alive for a specific reason (since they apparently kill anyone who encounters the Cthaeh) or Bredon/Threpe/Sithe is working as a rogue Sithe? Or the Sithe no longer guard the Cthaeh (as K got to speak to the Cthaeh without encountering a Sithe guard) and they are following their own agenda?

Or does the Cthaeh use the Sithe to kill those who the Cthaeh want killed? I can imagine there are people who speak to the Cthaeh that could hamper the Cthaeh's plans if they are allowed to live, and the Cthaeh let the Sithe kill these people.

Wouldn't the Cthaeh know who the Sithe will/won't kill when the person is standing before it? If the Cthaeh wanted a person to live after speaking to it, surely the Cthaeh would tell that person how to get past (and avoid) the Sithe guards, or it would orchestrate for the Sithe guards to be otherwise occupied. Wouldn't it do this for any person of merit who had spoken to it if that person could further the Cthaeh's goals?

I guess we'll discuss more about the Cthaeh in the following weeks in Felurian's chapters .... But just in case I put the Cthaeh points (and a few more) in the Cthaeh speculative summary.
DEL
112. robocarp
Put me firmly in the Ash = Cinder camp.

In NotW, after K meets D in the aftermath of the wedding at Trebon, Denna tells Kvothe that Master Ash questioned her about the wedding (how many people were there, etc.) right before heading toward the wedding, which was right before the Chandrian attacked. Ash was using Denna as a spy, and to me this is by far the most important evidence on who he is, yet I see few mentions of it here.

Master Ash is definitely a Chandrian, or closely connected thereto. Cinder is the most obvious choice.

Bredon is definitely not a Chandrian himself; he shows none of the signs. (I don't believe the Chandrian are capable of hiding their signs. You could maybe say he's in thrall of iron but it's a stretch.) I suppose one can argue that Bredon is one of the Chandrian's "peeps", maybe even their manager, whose job was to investigate places the Chandrian plan to attack. But I don't buy it.

The only direct evidence that Bredon is Master Ash is the Cthaeh's passing mention of Master Ash's walking stick, and even that can apply as well to Cinder (who'd just been shot in the leg). Other evidence is circumstantial and not very good, in my opinion, certainly nothing as good as Denna's testimony in Trebon.

From a meta standpoint, I don't believe it would be good literature for Bredon to be evil; there'd have to be sinister undertones to him and I don't see any. A storied past? Yes, the rumors, personality, "beautiful game", etc., all support Bredon once having been someone important. Evil? No.
Jo Walton
113. bluejo
The CTH says the Chandrian have had practice at hiding their signs. You can believe it or not, but that's what it says.
DEL
114. robocarp
Ok, thanks for clarification. So they can hide their signs, they just can't suppress them. I'm sure Cinder is smart enough to wear sunglasses whenever he's walking around town, but I doubt they could hide thier signs when in continual close contact with someone as Bredon was with K.

(Actually, rereading that section, the Cthaeh seems like it was being sarcastic. It has to tell the truth, so the Chandrian do have plenty of practice hiding their signs, but it doesn't mean they're any good at it.)
DEL
115. Zizoz
I posted this on Part 2 as well, but I doubt anyone will see it. I hope this one is recent enough...

In Trebon, when Kvothe is making up names, they seem to approach «Ferule». In particular, the last three he says before the wind blows an ash leaf into his mouth are Feran, Forue and Fordale. This to me is convincing evidence in favor of Master Ash being Cinder.

Also, on an unrelated note, my captcha was «fferoun ???????».
DEL
116. Rayonn
What about the seventh of Lanre's followers from the Adem story? The one who 'remembered the Lethani, and did not betray a city'

As far as I know, we don't know the name of that individual, but it seems likely that he might still be around, presumably opposing the the Chandrian, but using more 'chaotic good' means than the utilitarian Amyr.

Perhaps he is Mr. Ash, Bredon, or both?
DEL
117. old aggie
I didn't see this idea above, so here goes:

I've always had the feeling that D's "patron" is Scarpi - ever since Trebon.

Maybe Master Ash, whether or not he's Scarpi, is an Amyr, and he's using D as a tool to "groom" K to join the Amyr ranks: leading him into situations that will prove his mettle, build his confidence and sense of justice, etc.

And I bet that K will be plenty angry, when/if he finds out that his Amyr heroes have treated his beloved like an inanimate object that can be used then tossed aside - especially if they sacrifice her life.

I've only read the books once, so lack the depth some of you have, but that's my idea so far.
Felipe Martins
118. felipem
@116 I think of the followers of the Lethani more like Lawful Good (or at least Neutral Good) and Amyrs as Chaotic Good. Bredon fits better as Chaotic (beautiful game), just like Mr Ash (beating Denna).
Dave Mattingly
119. blackwyrm
I also think that Master Ash is Bredon, and that Bredon is an Amyr. Part of his beautiful game of turning a trap against itself is that of proliferating so many namedrops of Lamre and the Chandrian through Denna's song that the Chandrian will no longer be able to investigate them all, making the Chandrain "safe" to discuss. When the Chandrian can follow up, they'll have to do so one Chandrian at a time. That will leave them scattered and vulnerable.
Ashley Fox
120. A Fox
I think the biggest problem with proposing that Master Ash (Bredon or no) being an Amyr is the fact that he encourages/enables/hires D to write a positive song about Lanre.

The Amyr were formed to enact vengence on Haliax (Lanre turned) and his follwers, vengence for their betrayel and for what they did. The burning of Myr Tareniel becoming the emblam of this.

D's song promotes the Chandrian, not provokes. Arlidens troup were singing songs of the Amyr variety-that they are evil and need to be wiped out. Either way there is nothing to say that her song will cause the Chandrian to come 'one at a time', in fact we see the exact oposite with Arlidens troupe.

Ive posted extensively on my thoughts re Master Ash/Bredon/Fae & politics so I wont repeat them here. :) (such as I do not think he is in league with the Chandrian, but recognises their danger and possible benefits to his own plan)
DEL
121. cotterdan
I don't know if anyone else has brought this up but maybe Master Ash is feeding Denna the false story of Lanre to counteract people like Skarpi. It seems from puppet that Master Ash has something to do with the church, and since they were so against Skarpi it would make sense that they want to put an end to his tale. I would imagine that people were less willing to believe Skarpi's story about Lanre after Denna's song became popular. Maybe the church is working for the chandrian. That would explain why the church has become so corrupt and split with the Amyr, and it would also fit with Skarpi having such disdain for the church if he indeed is an Amyr.

This also fits with Master Ash being Bredon. While Kovthe is falling in line with the Amyr's drive to serve the greater good, Bredon is just trying to play a beautiful game. Bredon is serving the church and therefore the Chandrian. He is having a song be made that will make people less likely to believe stories like the one Skarpi told. He is setting the Amyr up to be the bad guys.
DEL
122. Narbles
I recently discovered these books and this reread. I have to say that I find the Bredon is Master Ash theory to be pretty unlikely.

Sure, the walking stick and dancing fit. But the personality? Bredon is nothing but kind and helpful to Kvothe. He shows no temper, no violence. I think any hints that he could be Ash are meant to throw us off the real trail, that Master Ash is Cinder. Perhaps they will also trick Kvothe into believing Bredon is Denna's patron, perhaps leading to him killing Bredon.

The proof for me is in his name. Bredon beer, as Kvothe states, is given to pregnant women for the nutrients it contains. Arwyl lectures about it in his class, saying it is made with flower pollen, fish oil and cherry stones. Wil and Sim turn up their nose at the thick brew, closer to medicine than beer. But Kvothe brings it to Auri to keep her healthy.

Every choice in naming is deliberately made by Rothfuss. The beer could easily have had another name, and so could Bredon. They share a name, and that should be considered significant.

That said, I think there is something to Bredon's "pagan frolics" that we don't know about yet. A connection with the fae seems likely, considering we never see anyone but Felurian and Bredon playing tak. I think Bredon's "travels" take him into the ancient Eld and the Fae.
DEL
123. Bernardo
i'd like to point out that in brazilian's edition there's a translation mistake (probably) that seems to give out something.

master ash in portuguese version is 'mestre freixo'
and cinder is 'gris'

in page 516 denna sais 'freixo gris' instead of 'mestre freixo' or just 'freixo'
Ian Weih-Wadman
124. Dunfodabadun
If bredon is master ash, then he could easily be the king K kills. He may even provoke K into doing almost unintentionally, maybe with a name, by finally killing D. He's easily important enough in Alveron's court to eventually become king. He may also be Ambrose's father, which could mean that by killing Bredon K accidentally makes Ambrose king.
Ian Weih-Wadman
126. Dunfodabadun
Cinder is in the Eld being a bandit leader when K is talking to Bredon and D is visiting Ash, so it wouldn't make sense for them to be the same person.
DEL
127. arcticcivvie
Anyone still look at this? Echo...echo...echo...

I'm not into spoilers, so I deliberately skipped this on the re-read. But I'm pretty convinced that Master Ash is Cinder, so I figured there wasn't any harm. I understand some of the reasons people think it would be Bredon, but I didn't really agree with all of them.

Maybe the biggest reason I feel this way is that Kvothe is actually pretty good at naming, although he doesn't realize it. I think that's a deliberate theme on Rothfuss's part. He names his horse "One-Sock" on accident. He names "Auri", and that's significant too, according to Elodin. He even guesses Nell's name. Just like he often says seven words around Denna, he often names things correctly. And so when trying to pick a name for Denna's patron, Zizoz is right- he picks all F names in a row, getting very close several times to Ferule. Then he settles on "Ash", which is (in English) another word for Cinder.

Also, Kvothe has an interesting exchange with the Ctheah, who, of course, spends the conversation teasing him with hidden truths and wordplay. The Ctheah gives him some hints and details about Cinder (although Kvothe is having a hard time figuring it out). Then in his next sentence he says "He beats her, you know..." referring to Denna and her patron. Read straight through, it seems like a subtle reference, telling Kvothe exactly who Denna's patron is, although Kvothe misses that, too.

That doesn't even touch on the fact that Ash was at the wedding, or influencing Denna with her song about Lanre, or any of the other reasons people have linked Ash with Cinder. Even though these reasons seem pretty subtle, they seem to fit with Rothfuss's themes and manner of dropping hints.

My $0.02.
George Brell
128. gbrell
@127.arcticcivvie:

I think a number of us continue to read the old threads.

Then he settles on "Ash", which is (in English) another word for Cinder.

I tend to discount this argument based on the fact that most of the translations translate the term as Ash (tree/wood) rather than Ash (cinder) as mentioned by Jo in the OP. Now, Rothfuss has used English-language-only wordplay before (Vintage, Not tally a Lot ess, etc.), so you may be right that we should discount foreign language translations. But I think there are just as many subtle hints planted for Bredon as there are for Cinder: the wolf/owl imagery, the dancing line, Denna's implication that her patron is a noble in the Maer's court.

The best evidence pointing towards Cinder seems to be a) Denna's song choice and b) an assumption of cruelty on the part of her patron and Cinder's obvious cruelty to Kvothe at his troupe's murder. But I don't know that either of those are sufficient to overcome the fact that Cinder fits almost none of the clues Denna gives regarding her patron.
DEL
129. arcticcivvie
Understood, and I didn't really expect to convince anyone. I don't think there's any serious proof one way or another.

In all honesty, though, the fact that the wordplay doesn't work out in any other language doesn't really hold any weight with me at all. That's just how language works. Rothfuss can't control that- and it's obvious that he's very careful with his wording. Some of that simply won't translate over and would be impossible to include.

However, many of the reasons people suspect either Cinder OR Bredon seem like a stretch to me- from the dancing line to the walking stick to the speculations on motives. They could go either way. But as I said, I think it's a deliberate theme by Rothfuss that Kvothe names things correctly. I thought that the first time through, when we didn't know Cinder's real name- and at that point the Ash/Cinder connection DID seem like a little bit of a stretch. But after finishing the second book, and knowing that Cinder is Ferule... I was listening to the audiobook, paying attention in particular to that secti0n, trying to remember exactly how he settled on Ash... and the three or four 'ferule-like' names startled me. I hadn't expected that at all.

That convinced me. I guess we'll have to wait to find out.
DEL
130. acidfreeze
I don't know if it's been mentioned before, but the most likely reason the Sithe are opposed to the Chandrian is simply because Haliax has come into contact with the Cthaeh. Bast explicitly states that if they were to find Kvothe, they'd kill him, exeryone who has come into contact with Kvothe, and burn the Waystone to the ground. They'd even kill any scavenger animals that came into contact with Kvothe's corpse.

Obviously they'd be enemies of the Chandrian, since we know for a fact that Lanre / Haliax talked to the Cthaeh, and the Cthaeh's conversation with Kvothe implies that at least Cinder has also had interactions with it.
DEL
131. therighstuff
Haha, please, everyone who thinks the stick is related to Bredon and serves as some sort of definitive clue (or red-herring) please google the word "Ferule" - Cinder's second name. "He beats her...stick to the Maer." Then google ferule. It's a real word, well placed and well used.

Bredon is clearly relevant, but the Ctheah never lies. Cinder is Ash. Denna was harmed (family killed?) by the Amyr. And I suspect she'll be the angel he must kill to gain his heart's desire. It would break Kvothe so.
George Brell
132. gbrell
@131.therightstuff:

Wasn't aware that "ferule" was an actual word. Apparently, an alternate spelling is "ferula," which is the Name Kvothe hears when Haliax controls Cinder at the scene of the troupe's murder. That's very strong evidence for Cinder being Master Ash.

I don't know why you think Denna would be the Angel, however. It doesn't even fit with your theory that the Amyr harmed her. It makes more sense if he had to trick a Demon (Cinder) and then fight an angel (a Singer) to keep his heart's desire (Denna). Given the frame context of that legend, his heart's desire seems to pretty clearly be Denna.

Alternatively, and this is very unsupported conjecture, have we ever considered that Cinder was Master Ash up until the wedding massacre at the end of NotW and then Bredon stepped in and took advantage of Cinder's secrecy to steal Denna from him? Denna has no contact from her patron for at least a month after Trebon and doesn't even mention him reappearing until Ch. 64 of WMF when she meets Kvothe in Vint.

Also, it sounds like the first incidence of violence against her was at the farm, but her accidental revelations in Ch. 64 suggest they've become more commonplace ("Her hand went to the fading bruise on her cheek. 'No he didn’t. I told you. I fell while I was out riding.'").

Also, what if "Stick by the Maer and he will lead you to their door" is supposed to be read " and will lead you to door." This would work almost as well with Cinder in place of Bredon as he could lead Kvothe to the Amyr's door as well, but it makes more sense if Bredon is an Amyr (since he's been close to the Maer).

Finally, there are a couple comments here that suggest that Cinder is Master Ash or Bredon is not Master Ash based on temperment. They suggest that Bredon is too nice, too calculating, while Cinder is cruel and lacks control. Except the Cthaeh explicitly says "Sometimes in a temper, but mostly it’s a game to him. How far can he go before she cries? How far can he push before she tries to leave and he has to lure her back again?" Isn't that a (really f*cking sick) beautiful game? Isn't that about power and control more than cruelty. Modern theory on domestic abuse (a pseudo-comparison) is that its about control, not sadism. That's what her relationship with her patron seems to be based on ("Poor girl, she’s tied to him so tight. Thinks that’s all she’s good for."). Also, note Bredon's hot/cold temper when Kvothe becomes cocky playing tak.
thistle pong
133. thistlepong
therightstuff@131

Okay, a quick ctrl-f reveals that nobody mentioned it on this page. On the other hand, that revelatory datum was posted at Westeros on, oh look, March 6th of 2011, and has been shared here as well. It's not that Tor folks are laughably occluded, it's just that it's not considered definitive evidence.

For a good long time, Pat maintained that the names were not intended to correspond to real words, that he had no special familiarity with non-English languages (s:a Carceret, Ruach, &c.) and that there were plenty of clues in the text without resorting to that sort of thing.

At best it's a minor point in favor of Cinder/Ash, especially compared to Ash's presence at Trebon and the "Feron, Ferue, Fordale" line.
ferule: an instrument (as a flat piece of wood like a ruler) used to punish children

walking stick: a stick used in walking
Steven Halter
134. stevenhalter
therightstuff@131:Hmm, I thought we had mentioned it in some post. Of course, ferule is a real word and it means a stick or cane used in punishment. While interesting, it isn't definitive.
Ashley Fox
135. A Fox
So if anyone it could be argued to represent that; creepy killer captain
of the guard...or whatever his actual title is, apolgies can't quite
remember.

He functions to punish, in the nature of ferule, K always has bad
feelings around him, a nature that seems to paralel the way Cinder acted at the massacre of K's family. He is also conveiniantly out hunting mischevious wizards...perhaps leaving himself enough time to begin his ops in the Eld.

The relatioship between the Maer and he is an odd one, and would be even more interesting in this light.
Steven Halter
136. stevenhalter
A Fox@135:That's Commander Dagon you are thinking of. Dagon is certainly by the Maer's side and seems to be very odd. I rather think he fits the role of being a Ciridae for the Amyr. Dagon seems quite odd as a human. Interestingly, Dagon (Dagan) was a Sumerian god with various roles. From Wikipedia:
Dagan is mentioned occasionally in early Sumerian texts but becomes prominent only in later Akkadian inscriptions as a powerful and warlike protector, sometimes equated with Enlil.
That fits the Dagon of the text fairly well. Dagon could be seen as the instrument that enforces the Maer's discipline--his ferule, if you will. From this, I don't take that Dagon=Cinder, but rather that ferule might be a descriptive (or even title). So, Dagon is the Maer's ferule as Cinder is Haliax's ferule.
A Ciridae could easily be thought of as a ferule for a given Amyr.
Jo Walton
137. bluejo
In my idiolect a ferule isn't a walking stick but the rubber bit that goes on the end of the stick, what in Canada is called a "cane tip".

Not that this is even faintly useful.

I also think we're chasing shadows round in circles, because "stick by the Maer" might refer to a person but it doesn't refer to Ferule/Ferula/Cinder, as Cinder isn't by the Maer. Cinder is off leading bandits against the Maer (why?) and then he is gone. He may be a stick, but he's not by the Maer.
Steven Halter
138. stevenhalter
Just to stretch things a bit more, I see that there are various types of South American butterflies with Dagon in their name.
thistle pong
139. thistlepong
bluejo@137 (like)

shalter@138 why does that give me deja vu?
Steven Halter
140. stevenhalter
And, of course, Dagon loses an eye when he is getting Caudicus.
Ashley Fox
141. A Fox
:) I was rather playing Devil's Advocate. In that if you look at various parts of the book and view the 'evidence' with various chracters, then it is possible to find correlations.

I took the ...info in 131, shook off the mockery, and presented a plausable alternative.

Though..now I am tempteded reread those sections to see if Dagan's (thanks shalter!) eyes are ever described as 'chill' or 'dark'.
DEL
142. therightstuff
well, there's some good stuff there too! Forgive me for not looking at Westeros (? hadn't heard of the site before), but the fact that it wasn't mentioned here (I did look!) made me surprised - I just finished the book and was expecting Ferule/Cinder/Ash connection to be mentioned. Obviously there's nothing definitive yet - Bring on day 3! - so at best anyone will just have clues.

But the way I see it the "evidence" for Bredon/Ash connection is circumstantial, whereas the "evidence" for Cinder/Ash connection is word-based. Of the two, it seems Pat favours the second over the first. Kvothe's naming of "FE/RU/LE" before settling on Ash, the Ctheah's word play, even Bast cursing at the end "...cinder and ash..." just shows how linked the two are in this world.

(Mostly I just lost my liking for Denna and am hoping she dies, not really sure there's much evidence one way or the other for us to say who the "angel" is. There are far too many fair women in the story.)

Dagon as Ciridae I could buy. But I could also buy Caudicus as Amyr since we never heard his motive for poisoning the Maer (who we know was digging into Amyr secrets).

Another unrelated point. I think most of the stuff on the Lackless/Lockless family has been made quite clear to us, but while we're digging through other characters I couldn't help remember that story about the boy who stole the moon's name. And how he was always unlucky....maybe even....Luckless. Haha :)
Ashley Fox
143. A Fox
Dagan. He and the Maer are 'looking over maps' when K first see's him. (For what purpose? Bandits? The Lackless lands?)

"Dagan looked at me with dark, dispassionate eyes. His face was hard and sharp and emotionless. I surpressed a shiver." WMF p.374

(coupled with Cinder, NotW, troupe massacre "His face was narrow and sharp." & "dark and chill of eye")

" As Dagon stepped into the room his eyes flicked toeach of the corners, to the window, to the other door, breifly over me, then back to the Maer. When his eyes touched me, all the deep feral instincts that had kept me alive on the streets of Tarbean told me to run. Hide. Do anything so long as it took me far away from this man." WMF p.439.

(!!! This is potencially exciting. We have surmised that K's retreat into his sleeping mind was a result of his encounter with the Chandrian, specifically Cinder (at Haliax's command) sending him into 'sleep', leading him to the events of Tarbean, hiding, until Skarpi Names him. Here we have an echo of that time, and perhaps that command, when he meets the eyes of Dagan.)

Via Stapes "Good lord, Rand, he's like cold water down the back of my neck. I wish you'd get rid of him."
(Signs on the vase. Tree, pool of water, snow.)
Maer "So someone else could have him? No, Stapes. I want him right here. My mad dog on a short leash."
(But whose leash? This has an interesting correlation with the relationship of Haliax and Cinder.)

Dagan goes wiazrd hunting. Curiously, in the next chapter, is where K thinks he is "finally getting my teeth into the game" of tak. Bredon denies this, claiming a subtle game, that K is not getting. His confidance boost from stopping the Maers poisening means he is actualy playing worse. I believe this also extends to K missing what is right beneath his nose, he does not yet understand what game he is playing, or that it is 'a mirror e hold to life'.

Later, the Maer on waylaid Tax collecters, in north, near Lackless lands (which is dropped in as if expecting K to have some reaction. He is stunned when K fingers the Lackkless, as if expecting a wholly different answer...)"I suspect someone in my guard is in league with them" Like Dagan?

Cinder, in Eld. "He stepped into the choas with fearless grace, taking in everything with a glance." Much like Dagan in above qoute. "As I watched him stride across the encampment I was reminded of...something....He gestured to his men, and something in that motion was terribly familiar..."

Later, upon return to severen K and the Maer are talking of what happens. "But still, strange and bitter news." he muttered, almost to himself." Why is this strange? He knew there were bandits-and efficiant ones. Is it the news of the leader disappearing? Or is it rather that it has ramifications on his own plot. Confirmation of 'magic' in the Eld, near the Lackless lands. Mmmm.
"He gave me an oddly calculating look."What do you make of it?" Then the Lackless box enters.

I am half convinced that Dagan is Cinder, wearing a glamourie. If Faen can wear a glamourie, a seeming, to resemble a mule and the Chandrian know how to hide their signs...a missing eye doesnt seem that much of a stretch. Dagan returns 2 days after K leaves. The Chandrian obviously have some sort of teleportation-like power. Dagan is not occupied, is not really mentioned other than his return. He is obviously in the Maers confidance with whatever he is plotting, but perhaps Cinder is actually playing this role to further Haliaxs' plan? There is an obvious central focus of the Lackless lands and mysteries.

Looking over these sections I cant help but feel that Stapes has been overlooked. He is faithful to the Maer, he protects him. I also suspect that he knows more of arcanists than he lets on. He turns to evil wizard when he suspects K of poisening the Maer, or at least taking advantage, showing that he respects him. "My outer door...He has ears like a dog. Its uncanny." Or perhaps he has a system similar to the bells in Denna's swanky lodgings. He clearly distrusts Dagan.

"Our Stapes is old fashioned...And more educated than he cares to admit. Calanthis is the Eld Vintic Name for them...Its also the surname of the royal line of Vintas." WMF p.440
thistle pong
144. thistlepong
You are fantastic, A Fox. For now, that is enough said.
Steven Halter
145. stevenhalter
A Fox@143:I think there is definitely something off about Dagon. I tend towards him being something other than a Chandrian as I mentioned above. But I do think he is more than just a mortal guard.
George Brell
146. gbrell
Going to join the chorus of support for A Fox's well-researched theory.

It has a number of interesting implications vis-a-vis Denna's patron, "stick by the Maer," and the Amyr.

Some small pushback:
-Dagon is described as "weathered," while Cinder's skin has the "perfect beauty of porcelain."
-Dagon is bald, while Cinder had shoulder length hair when Kvothe met him.
-Cinder wears a "coif" when Kvothe sees him at the bandit camp. Traditionally, a coif doesn't cover the face. It was at distance, but it's interesting that Kvothe doesn't recognize Cinder's face (or Dagon's). But this could also lend credence to the glamour theory (along with the Cthaeh's comments), since it's unlikely bandits in superstitious Vintas would follow a man with goats' eyes.
George Brell
147. gbrell
A follow-up after having read the brief bits of text involving Dagon. Could Dagon be in league with Caudicus?

I'd like to highlight portions of this exchange:

“Ah, Dagon!” the Maer said cheerily. “Are you well this fine day?”
“Yes, your grace.” He stood attentively, not quite meeting the Maer’s eye.
“Would you be good enough to arrest Caudicus for treason?”
There was a half-heartbeat pause. “Yes, your grace.”
“Eight men should be sufficient, providing they’re not likely to panic in a complicated situation.”
“Yes, your grace.” I began to sense subtle differences in Dagon’s responses.
“Alive,” Alveron responded, as if answering a question. “But you needn’t be gentle.”
“Yes, your grace.” With that, Dagon turned to leave.

-Interestingly, Dagon only ever says: "Yes, your grace." He has no other lines in the text.
-I presume that Dagon doesn't meet the Maer's eyes because of his inferior social status, but what if has to do with maintaining a glamour? The problem with this is that Chronicler's reveal of Bast seems to suggests that indirect glimpses (as opposed to direct ones) reveal the underlying truth beneath a disguise, and that it is more about expectation than examination.
-What is the "half-heartbeat pause"? Is he merely startled by the unusual nature of the request or is he startled because he is involved in the treason?
-Kvothe detects subtle differences in his responses (see previous comment about him having only one line). This can be read one of two ways: 1) Kvothe is commenting that he uses the one line in different ways (see, e.g., Vashet with "You fight like a tiger"); or 2) Kvothe is commenting that his later responses have changed somehow from his earlier responses. Perhaps because he realizes that the Maer hasn't caught him?

This also ties in with what happens immediately after. The Maer and Kvothe are "secured" in the Maer's rooms while Caudicus escapes by Dagon's orders. I've yet to see an explanation for the "malignant spirit" that killed Anders. And it's "Dagon" that is after Caudicus while the guards are left to guard the Maer (due to the ambiguity of language, Dagon could've taken guards with him as well, the text isn't clear - judging by the fact that guards were slain by Caudicus at his eventual apprehension, I lean towards this interpetation).

Ambiguity pops up again when Caudicus' disposition comes up between Stapes and Kvothe. He is only caught "by setting fire to ." I would normally read this as him perishing in the fire, but Kvothe reads the situation as implying that they managed to capture him and he was then "tended to." Perhaps the reason a) Caudicus was so close and b) it took so long to catch him was that Dagon/Cinder needed time to find a patsy to replace Caudicus or prevent himself from being fingered.

And what better way to keep people from examining one's eyes than by conveniently "losing" one?
thistle pong
148. thistlepong
You could probably handwave the direct/indirect gaze question by noting that Devan's a namer who has seen the world and knows there are no demons in it, only Faen.
DEL
149. Noorthansen
WMF p. 396: "Outside the window I watched two squirrels chase each other around the tall trunk of an ash tree" - could this be K and D running around Mr. Ash/Bredon? Squirrels are red in my part of the world...

BTW - thanks for all the comments! They heighten the reading experience so much!
thistle pong
151. thistlepong
I certainly did a search for squirrel to see if it indicated a chapter parallel. Alas he uses the word a bit too often. Still made me smile.
DEL
152. pirimie
Just finished my re-read and now try to follow all the great comments and the insightfull speculative summary. I am in the Bredon camp. But when I was re-reading the Severen chapters, I couldn't help but wonder if not the Maer could be Master Ash. First because of the description of the ash tree in front of the Maer's windows. And then because it seemed a bit too coincidental that Kvothe was sent on the hunt in the Eld just after Denna performed her Lanre song. As if Maer Alveron wanted to intentional seperate Denna and Kvothe. I always wondered how Kvothe had been so secretive about his first visit into Severen, trying to get rid of possible followers. And then later be so careless all the times he met with Denna. So the Maer could know about their meetings and about Denna singing this song to him. And it seemed strange to me how Denna seemed to avoid to be introduced to the Maer when they had been in his gardens at night. Why is he contacting Count Threpe off all for help of courting Meluan Lackless just when Denna is abroad and Kvothe "free"? But being the Maer it explains his need for secrecy a lot.

I haven't had time to think everything through and there is lots against this theory. E.g. it is never mentioned that the Maer is traveling often (to Imre to meet Denna and Trebon etc.) and he had been ill in the last year, he seems to be not very good with poetry and song writing (to help Denna with her song). I just wanted to mention another possibility.

And probably no-one ever will read this, because I am way behind....
Steven Halter
153. stevenhalter
pirimie@153:No worries--lots of people will see your post. I think the Maer has been conjectured before and those are decent reasons in the for category.
DEL
154. pirimie
stevenhalter: you are very kind :D
Now I have to find those thoughts about the Maer. So much to read....
DEL
156. pirimie
Thank you so much for the link. And you just summed it up much more eloquently than I did and much more thought through. :D

As a newcomer to this site, it is nice to see that someone else had had similar thoughts.
George Bracken
157. jorgybear
“The beautiful game is also the opposite of destroying the world”. I disagree.
"The point isn't to win?" I asked.
"The point," Bredon said grandly, "is to play a beautiful game." Suggesting that he doesn’t mind whether he wins or loses, merely that he plays well. In fact, I get the feeling he would get immense pleasure from being beaten by masterful move, provided that he himself played well. If someone like that were to see the world as a Tak board, playing with people without thought of consequence, sounds very Chandrian to me. And a little like the Ctheah, except that the Cthaeh KNOWS the consequences, that’s why it does what it does.
DEL
158. Akil Hollis
Master Ash is Amyr. He's chasing the Chandrian and letting Denna help him.

Denna being trained to be Amyr, she will take Kvothe's name and good right hand (which he pledged her in breaking his promise to stay away from Master Ashe), because it is for the "greater good" that this dangerous man lose his powers.

Obvious to us because he has been influenced by the Cthaeh. Obvious to everyone in his world after he opens the door in the library. Hidden there for safety. Guarded by immortal Auri, broken peice off the moon captured by Jax/Iax who waits behind the door.

But I still dont know which king Kvothe kills. Ambrose with power from Iax' world? Iax himself?

Also dont know if Devi is truelly a demon. And whether she got kicked out of the University for better reasons than what she admits. Maybe reasons connected to the fall of Elodin. Maybe Fae, maybe she opens the door when Kvothe lets her in the Archives out of pity?

Hurry up Patrick! I've read the first 2 books like 10 times each. If i say they were great will you work too hard on the next book? Should i say they were okay so you can relax and write?!?
DEL
159. Sholto
The Caudicus theory is interesting, I would definitely consider him being Master Ash, except for the fact that the two look nothing alike. Master Ash is supposed to be older, with gray or white hair, while Caudicus is described as follows: "a thin man with a long, hawkish nose and curling black hair." The physical charactersitics don't match, so unless Caudicus has a way of changing his face, I think it's pretty unlikely. And honestly, if Caudicus just happens to have some secret magic that changes his face, that will kind of bug me for lack of depth....

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