Mar 5 2013 2:00pm

The Wheel of Time Reread: A Memory of Light, Part 5

The Wheel of Time Re-read: A Memory of Light, Part 5Hail, WOTers! I bring you, with probably more phlegm and mucus than is strictly sanitary, a Wheel of Time Re-read!

Today’s entry covers Chapter 2 of A Memory of Light, in which no one asks for permission for anything, and sometimes it’s awesome and sometimes it really isn’t.

I didn’t mean for this to be another one chapter post, but see above re: phlegm and mucus. Also, eye-watering, itching, and hacking up a lung or two, no big. So far 2013 is FIRED as far as my immune system is concerned.

Previous re-read entries are here. The Wheel of Time Master Index is here, which has links to news, reviews, interviews, and all manner of information about the Wheel of Time in general. The index for all things specifically related to the final novel in the series, A Memory of Light, is here.

This re-read post, and all posts henceforth, contain spoilers for the entire Wheel of Time series. If you haven’t read, read at your own risk.

And now, the post!


Chapter 2: The Choice of an Ajah

What Happens
Pevara sits alone with Androl, trying to pretend she is not terrified being among men who can channel. She comments that the rain does not seem natural, and she and Androl realize that the people walking past outside are ghosts. She thinks of the some forty villagers who had burst into flame for no reason some days earlier, and thinks that the world is unraveling. Turning to their more immediate problems, she points out to Androl that she is the only one left of the Aes Sedai in the Black Tower who has not been turned, and perhaps they can use that. Androl rejects the notion of using her as bait, opining they should sneak her out instead, and she replies that she is not a maiden in need of rescue. Androl counters that this is not her fight.

“Let me explain something to you, Asha’man,” Pevara said, leaning in. “This is my fight. If the Shadow takes this tower, it will mean terrible things for the Last Battle. I have accepted responsibility for you and yours; I will not turn away from it so easily.”

“You’ve ‘accepted responsibility’ for us? What does that mean?”

She says the Black Tower needs guidance, but Androl says she means they need corralling. He asks why the White Tower sent Red sisters to bond Asha’man, and Pevara answers that the Red Ajah is dedicated to dealing with men who can channel. Androl argues that the Red Ajah only exists to destroy them, but Pevara counters that the purpose of the Reds is to keep men who can channel from harming themselves or others.

“I would like to believe that, Pevara, but I’ve seen the way you and yours look at us. You see us as… as some stain that needs to be cleansed, or poison to be bottled.”

Pevara shook her head. “If what you say is true, and the Source is cleansed, then changes will come, Androl. The Red Ajah and the Asha’man will grow together in common purpose, over time. I’m willing to work with you now, here.”

“Contain us.”

“Guide you. Please. Trust me.”

Androl says he wishes he could believe her, as she does not seem like other Reds, who hate men (Pevara privately admits that many do, but sidesteps the accusation), but says he cannot believe she is truly their ally. Frustrated, Pevara tries to change the subject, but Androl challenges her to state that she doesn’t find him repulsive; cornered into a straight answer, Pevara admits that men who can channel do disturb her, and she thinks what they do is unnatural, but she insists that that does not mean she finds the men themselves “repulsive.”

“You are just a man trying to do your best, and I hardly think that is worthy of disgust. Either way, I am willing to look beyond my inhibitions in the name of common good.”

“That’s better than I could have expected, I suppose.” He looked back toward the rain-splattered windows. “The taint is cleansed. This isn’t unnatural any longer. I wish… I wish I could just show you, woman.”

He asks about these circles she mentioned, and she explains the basics to him, and also that in a circle with one man and one woman, he would have to lead. They try it, and Pevara has a moment of panic when it works. She fights it down when she senses that Androl is just as frightened, and tries to see if she can tell that saidin is clean, but the power is so foreign to her she cannot be sure. Androl is amazed at her strength compared to his, and wonders if he could break the block on gateways with it. Pevara grows nervous, and asks him to release her. Androl ignores her, using her saidar to move things in the room, and she cannot stop him. She panics, and he finally notices this and breaks the link. Without thinking, she lashes out, sending Androl to his knees, and afterwards realizes she has bonded him. Androl is incensed when he realizes what she’s done, and retaliates in turn, bonding her with the Asha’man version.

“You bonded me?” she said, horrified.

He groaned, rolling over. “You did it to me first.”

She realizes she can not only feel his emotions but even has an impression of his thoughts, and declares she will release her bond if he releases his, but Androl replies that he doesn’t know how to release his. They are interrupted then by Evin, who charges into the workshop to report that Welyn and his Aes Sedai Jenare are back, but they have been turned. Androl groans, because Welyn had been with Logain.

“[Logain] isn’t here,” Evin said, “but Androl, Welyn says Logain will come back soon—and that he’s met with Taim, and they have reconciled their differences. Welyn is promising that Logain will come tomorrow to prove it. Androl… that’s it. We have to admit it now. They have him.”

Pevara could feel Androl’s agreement, and his horror. It mirrored her own.

Aviendha silently sneaks into Elayne’s camp at Merrilor, easily avoiding the wetlander sentries and guards while contemplating what to do about the Aiel, and Rand. She reflects that the Aiel will need a purpose after Rand is done with them, but rejects the notion of returning to the Three-Fold Land, thinking that would only invite attack from the Seanchan. She remembers that in her vision, both the Seanchan and the Aiel had waited almost a generation before escalating to full war, and wonders why. She dodges the sentries outside Elayne’s tent and slips inside, where she sits and listens to Elayne argue with Lord Lir about the futility of trying to retake Caemlyn. Elayne declares that they will try and rescue any remaining refugees from the city, but that they will wait until the Trollocs eventually abandon the city before attempting to engage them.

“We will begin sending in scouts before the night is through, trying to find pens of civilians to save, and Aviendha, what in the name of a bloody goat’s left stone are you doing!

Aviendha looked up from trimming her fingernails with her second knife. Bloody goat’s left stone? That was a new one. Elayne always knew the most interesting curses.

The three High Seats at the table jumped up, scrambling, throwing down chairs and reaching for swords. Elayne sat in her place, eyes and mouth wide.

“It is a bad habit,” Aviendha admitted, slipping her knife back into her boot. “My nails were growing long, but I should not have done it in your tent, Elayne. I am sorry. I hope I did not offend.”

Elayne splutters at first, but then becomes extremely amused to realize Aviendha had snuck through her entire camp, into the command tent, and got within five feet of Elayne herself without anyone noticing. Elayne dismisses the very unnerved High Seats and embraces Aviendha warmly. Aviendha is uncertain as to whether she’s done something wrong, but Elayne just tells her she is “a gem.” She sobers, though, when Aviendha asks after Caemlyn, and tells her that it must have been an inside job, opening the Waygate to let the Trollocs in. Aviendha asks if her plan to starve the Trollocs out of the city means Elayne will attend Rand’s meeting tomorrow. Elayne confirms it, and adds that he’d better not give them “theatrics and stalling” while her city burns. A messenger brings a letter, which Elayne uses the Power to open; at Aviendha’s look, she sheepishly explains that now that she can use saidar reliably again she keeps finding excuses for it. The letter proves to be from Rand, and Elayne is both annoyed and amused by it.

“He insists that I return to Caemlyn to see to my people. He gives a dozen reasons why, going so far as to ‘release me from my obligation’ to meet with him tomorrow.”

“He should not be insisting on anything with you.”

“Particularly not so forcefully,” Elayne said. “Light, this is clever. He’s obviously trying to bully me into staying. There’s a touch of Daes Dae’mar in this.”

Elayne wonders why Rand wants her at the meeting so badly, and hopes it is not because he thinks her feelings for him will influence her. Aviendha says she must go to him that night, as there might not be another chance, which is part of why she came to Elayne. Elayne gives her blessing. Aviendha regrets that she does not have the time to get to know Min better as well, but thinks that Min feels better about her than she did, and asks Elayne to send for her so that all three of them may speak together. Elayne agrees.

Re: the first half of this chapter, I didn’t buy for a moment that Logain had already been turned, but nevertheless: Dun!

So it’s always great fun, not, when you have two characters whom you like a great deal go and behave like utter boneheads. Case in point: Pevara and Androl. Like, seriously, guys. Seriously?

As I said in my initial review: no consent issues here! Of course, it’s a bit hard to decide where to lay the blame when (or so it seems to me) both parties are equally culpable. An argument can be made, of course, that it was more Pevara’s fault than Androl’s, because she did do the involuntary bonding first, but I tend to think that’s balanced by the fact that she knew her version of the bond could be undone, while Androl retaliated with no such knowledge, which is equally shitty if you ask me.

Whatever, you can certainly quibble about it if you want, but at the end of the day they were both giant idiots and that’s pretty much about the size of it, in my opinion. Which is actually strangely nice, in a way.

And what I mean by that is: one thing I definitely really enjoyed about the Pevara/Androl relationship is that throughout its evolution, it has always unquestionably been a relationship between equals. Far more so, in fact (or at least far more obviously so), than many of the other male/female relationships in the series, romantic or otherwise—and definitely more so than I think pretty much any of the Asha’man/Aes Sedai relationships thus far (with the dubious exception of Rand and Elayne, I suppose). There is the familiar dynamic of pushme/pullyou between them, but Androl and Pevara in particular seem to harbor a hell of a lot more mutual respect in the process than we generally have seen—or at least that’s how it seems to me.

Of course, there is the point that Androl and Pevara’s relationship has developed under circumstances completely unlike nearly every other relationship between Asha’man and Aes Sedai thus far. It’s entirely post-Cleansing, for one (and Pevara’s skepticism notwithstanding, that does make a difference), and it’s also past the point at which even the White Tower has basically given up pretending the Black Tower is not actually a real organization. By which I mean, by the time Androl and Pevara meet the Asha’man have gained both legitimacy as a political entity and (uneasy) respect as a fighting force to be reckoned with. Not to mention, there’s nothing like being thrown headfirst into a life-threatening crisis of conspiracy with someone to make each respective party shut up, get on with it, and quit sweating the small stuff.

And hey, involuntary telepathy helps too, it turns out!

Which isn’t to say it’s all smiles and roses, but part of that feeling of equality this relationship gives off is due to the fact that Androl and Pevara both seem to be very good at acknowledging their own prejudices to each other, even if they can’t (yet) argue each other out of those prejudices. Pevara’s statement, by the way, that she is trying to work past her own ingrained biases re: men channeling is about as mature a response as one can possibly hope for on the subject—especially given that, unlike so many other prejudices, Pevara’s actually has a basis in reality. Or at least it used to until very recently. (And, actually, kind of still does, when you consider that Androl and many other Asha’man are, technically, still insane.)

Speaking of which, the frustrating thing about Pevara and Androl’s argument about the Red Ajah is that they are not actually arguing about the same thing, though I don’t think either of them really realizes it. (People who have these kinds of arguments rarely do, in my experience.) Because while Pevara’s pro-Red arguments are perfectly valid based on the theory of the Red Ajah, Androl’s anti-Red arguments are based on how that theory works out in practice, which is to say, not all that closely to the theory.

This is the problem when your nice, shiny, smooth principles come in contact with the dirty, lumpy, jagged-edged world they have to live in. It ain’t generally pretty, is what I’m saying.

However, again they are at an impasse: Pevara is right that in the pre-Cleansing era, something like the Red Ajah was unavoidably needed, and Androl is right that their necessity did not prevent their work from corrupting them. But just because the ugly grimy practical world is going to inevitably ding up your glossy shiny theoretical paint job is not sufficient cause to say “fuck it” and have no principles at all, I suppose.

Which I think means I just made a basically pro-Red Ajah argument, sort of, so now I have to go lay down for a while.

Or, change the subject to Aviendha, who made me laugh aloud in this chapter. It’s been a while, I think, since we’ve gotten to see Aviendha be badass in and of herself; the Wayback Ter’angreal episode aside, she’s mostly spent the last couple of books doing pointless about-to-be-a-Wise-One chores and somewhat unrealistically managing to never be in the same room with Rand, or so it seems. So this was a nice reminder that girl’s got skillz.

Though I do think it is pretty damn foolish of Elayne to not have had any kind of ward around her tent, even one just to warn of an approach. Hello, have you not noticed what’s been happening to you for the past couple of years? Or what’s happening currently? It’s Apocalypse Now, honey! Paranoia, it’s a virtue, embrace it! Jeez.

That said, Elayne’s reaction to Aviendha’s stunt was priceless, so I’ll let it slide. And “a bloody goat’s left stone” is actually a pretty good epithet, if you ask me. Goats are automatically funny. Though I’m not sure if an actual direct reference to genitalia counts as cheating, in WOT profanity terms.

Aviendha’s thoughts on the Aiel-Seanchan conflict as predicted by her vision were interesting. I’m a bit fuzzy on whether this was clarified before we got to the Tuon portions of AMOL, but I think the inference that’s meant to be made is that in the vision timeline at least, the reason for the delay on the Seanchan side is that nothing happened until after Tuon died and a new Empress/Emperor was raised. Or is that only in the new timeline? I has a confuse. Well, whatever, I’ll come back to that.

Is it just me, or is Rand’s letter actually pretty simplistic by Daes Dae’mar standards? Plain old reverse psychology? I don’t know, that’s kind of basic stuff there. But then again, I guess it’s only amateur if you assume that Rand assumed that Elayne wouldn’t see through it. If you suppose that he knew she would see through it… well, in that case I’m not sure why he would have bothered, then. Maybe he actually knew that it would amuse her? *shrug*

And that’s what I got for this one, y’all. Send Claritin, and I’ll see you next Tuesday!

Sam Mickel
1. Samadai
I love both povs here. Pevara is a really good person, Aviendha is just hilarious the way she thinks.
Deana Whitney
2. Braid_Tug
Yea! a post!

Ah, Pevara. The best of the Reds. She really should have gone Green. Then again, is sounds like the Greens don't do the full "battle" training that the Reds do.
Love the romance that developed between these too. Some of the best "light" moments in the book.
David Goodhart
3. Davyd
Pevara really turned out as one of my favorite secondary characters. Androl, too, of course, but we've known Pevara longers. Talmanes is up there also. I think it says a lot when readers get this invested in 2nd and 3rd tier characters in a story with a scope this large.
Rob Munnelly
4. RobMRobM
Re goats being automatically funny - google Whitney Houston goat videos and see what comes up - nothing NSFW, get your minds out of the gutter right now - just 35 million youtube views of awesomeness.

Re the chapter, Pevara-Androl are adorable (although I can't believe Pevara bonded Androl without consent - she could have asked or threatened that unless he lets go, she'll bond him) and Avi-Elayne are entertaining.
Nadine L.
5. travyl
I love chapter two, especially the “I believe it was your bad idea first.”
And I loved that Aviendha behaved like a Maiden of the spear (rather than a Wise One), stealing herself into Elaynes tent.
The only thing that didn’t “fit” for me is Elanye calling Aviendha “gem” – I just have the feeling one woudn’t call an equal “gem”, it feels condescending, though that might be wrong and a problem of English not being my native language.
Kat Blom
6. pro_star
I admit, the "what in the name of a bloody goat's left stone" left me giggling. That one was awesome. Leigh, feel better!!! Lots of juice and drugs to make you live once more!
Rich Bennett
7. Neuralnet
Just have to chime in to say that the Pevara-Androl scenes were for me some of the highlights of this book. I was definitely in the you are crazy to add new characters at this point camp before reading AMoL... and I was wrong.
8. whimsicalrapscallion
Despite the controversy surrounding its inception, the double bond is one of the coolest discoveries of the third age. Add to that Elayne figuring out how to give a warder to a non channeller and it's telepathy for everyone!
Bryan Cogswell
9. shmoo

Hard for me to let Pevara off on the bonding thing. Sure SHE knew that she could undo it - but how would Androl know that? From his perspective he knew how to do it and didn't know how to undo it so why should be think/believe that it could be undone?
10. AndrewB
For the last couple of books, I have championed the idea that post LB, the Red's primary purpose should be to hunt escaped Dreadlords and Forsaken (I realize the post AMoL, none of the Forsaken are free). To that end, I beleive that Reds should seek to bond any willing Asha'man to help with this cause. With the development of the double bond between Pevara and Androl, I think that she be standard practice for an Aes Sedai/Asha'man Dreadlord hunting team.

Thanks for reading my musings,
11. Twedge
Thanks again for the re-read, Leigh!
12. graftonio
About the Aviendha/Future Aiel, Seanchan war. One of the people in Aviendha's vision said something to the effect that after the old empreress died was when the trouble really started.
13. NotInventedHere
Is it just me, or is Rand’s letter actually pretty simplistic by Daes Dae’mar standards?
It is, and it isn't. It shows that Rand has learned his lesson, that he can't just tell Elayne what he wants her to do because she feels that would undermine her authority (childish as that may be at times). So he directly tells her she should do the opposite of what he wants, knowing that she will see through it and know that he really wants her to be present but at the same time ensuring she isn't seen to be following his orders (or whims, or what have you). Not exactly the most complicated ploy, but more than just reverse psychology - he knows she will see through it, the point is that it let's Elayne know it is important to him that she be there without the appearance of blatantly telling her so.
14. Faculty Guy
Thanks, Leigh, and hopes that you will recover health quickly.

No worries about a slow pace (i.e., single-chapter weeks) now, I think. In the past, I believe some of your fans were concerned that you wouldn't "catch up" the Re-read before the publication of AMOL. Now, the situation is quite different: we have nothing to look forward to EXCEPT your weekly installments. I suspect some of us would be happy for you to string them out indefinitely. Well, I guess there is the hoped-for "Encyclopedia," but that is pretty far off and not a for-sure thing.

As we found out in 2007, NOTHING is for sure.
Ron Garrison
15. Man-0-Manetheran
Feel better soon, Leigh! Maybe some time in the sweat tent with the Wise Ones???
Vincent Lane
16. Aegnor
I think the tower made a critical mistake with the Red Ajah. Not with it's creation (which was necessary), but with who joined the Red Ajah. As Pevara admits here, many Reds hate men. Even those that don't actively hate them have very low opinions of them. Don't like men? Join the Red. That right there is completely backwards.

Men who could channel (before the cleansing) aren't evil or criminals. They are normal every day people who suddenly found out that they had a horrible incurable disease that would eventually cause them to go insane and hurt others, including those they love. It should require compassion and understanding. Instead you have disgust and hatred. Instead of being treated as people with an illness, they were treated as wild animals that needed to be put down.
17. Ryamano
Shouldn't Elayne have noticed Aviendha was inside her tent due to the first-sister and wife-bond?
Tricia Irish
18. Tektonica
Feel better, Leigh. I've been coughing and snoting for 2 months now. (TMI, I know.) This is a nasty f**ing bug this year. Good luck!

Loved Androl and Pevara...and they just get better! Two really good secondary characters and welcome comic, and personal relief, during the War. Nice to see Avienda and Elayne together again too. Wish we had a scene with all three ladies. (I really wanted more Min in this volume, or at least a last Min/Rand scene).

btw....I don't think it's demeaning to call a peer a "gem." You're telling your friend that they are a jewel...priceless, shining, multi-faceted, rare.
Erdrick Farseer
19. Erdrick
I agree about that being a great Avi scene. She's always been one of my favorite characters.

About the Aiel/Seanchan tensions, yes (according to the vision) things did not escalate to full war until after Tuon died, but how long was that? I just found on library.tarvalon.net that: "The final vision is only seventeen years after Tarmon Gaidon, but there has already been a new Empress for several years." Well...Seanchan empresses do tend to get assassinated. Perhaps it was tensions and scrimmages with Aiel (in the vision universe) that precipitated circumstances leading to a successful assassination of Tuon.

In the new future, with their new role in the Dragon's Peace (and with the Wise Ones actively working against the forseen corruption of what constitutes honor to the Aiel), I can imagine things developing along very different tangents. Since Tuon can channel, her potential lifespan is quite long. So it's possible that the "time of the old empress" is much longer in this new future. The potential implications of that are vast.
Maiane Bakroeva
20. Isilel
Yea, I like Androl and Pevara, but that was definitely... stoopid. Also a missed opportunity to describe whether Asha'man bond has any beneficial effects on the bondee and what happens when the bonder dies. At least Androl didn't hit her with the absolute Compulsion version. Also, what happened to the necessity of kissing your bondee? Wasn't it how the bond was developed and how all other Asha'man had to do it? I thought that AS had to touch their bondee too.
Also, makes even the non-Compulsion Asha'man bond iffy, if they can't free the women. Hm... And of course, the absolute Compulsion version is both widely known and ripe for abuse. Even though, seemingly, not even evil Asha'man jumped on an opportunity to make themselves some slaves... highly unrealistic, if you ask me.

I have to also note here, that lack of equality in one-to one- trans-gender link always troubled me. Pair of individuals, partners, is such a basic unit in so many human endeaviours and this spells that women aren't "separate, but equal", but very much _less_. In fact, it is almost Biblical.

The process of bringing a man into the link has been changed from the previous books changed, too. In WH, Nynaeve brought Rand into the link and then had to actively cede control to him. Here, Androl almost grabs Pevara and establishes the link himself? Meh.

Nor do I find the AS seeming inability to sense lack of taint in a link(!) to be convincing. I mean, Moiraine could sense the taint, while channeling in the Ways in TEoTW... I don't think it plausible that AS who had linked with Asha'man _before_ the Cleansing could have been unsure on the subject and wouldn't have trumpeted it far and wide.

Aviendha is a hoot here, yes. Re: anti-human ward, it may not be practical while Elayne is awake. So many different people come and go in her tent which is a command center that she'd have to constantly reset it.

And why, oh why is Rand using manipulation on one of his sweethearts? Wasn't his Jediying supposed to help him over such foolishness?

Graftonio @12:
One of the people in Aviendha's vision said something to the effect that after the old empreress died was when the trouble really started.
My impression was that the "old Empress" (Tuon) died quite soon after the Last Battle and that she and Aiel were coming close to hammering out a deal re: release of the captive Wise Ones, and other captive Aiel. After she died these issues remained at a stalemate for many years, until Aiel started the war.
Karen Fox
21. thepupxpert
Pevara's bonding of Androl was a knee-jerk reaction to having been completely helpless within their circle, and Androl on the other hand was like a kid with a new toy, trying it out on everything. I think Pevara's bonding was reactionary backlash due to fear, and Androl responded by getting pissed off and copying her. There was no time to consider the consequences. And they both seemed to be fine with the bonding after they had time to experience their new feelings. I found it a lot less repulsive than Alanna's bonding of Rand. That is still one of the more difficult sections for me to read in the entire series.

EDIT: For spelling.
Sean Dowell
22. qbe_64
Chapter 2 solo? Even being sick Leigh,
c'mon meow.

I know we can take our time, but I don't think anybody wants this re-read to run into 2014.
Glen V
23. Ways
Thanks, Leigh! I'm sending you and Tek good vibes so you can shake your bugs.

This was definitely one of my favorite chapters in the book, possibly topping the list (only a re-read will tell for sure). Especially the Pevara and Androl scene - love 'em both. Double-bonding has incredible possibilities, wish we'd seen more of this later. Yes, it was a knee-jerk reaction in this particular case, and has some negative overtones as such. And, yes, it reminds me somewhat of organic chemistry (double bonds are generally stronger than single bonds). Even so...

Aside: it occurred to me while re-reading this chapter last night that Morgase doesn't appear in aMoL at all. Could be bad memory. Did she exit stage left in ToM, never to be heard from again?
24. alreadymadwithpevara
Braid_Tug @2
It looks like Greens primarily focus on conventional warfare with conventional troop formations and equipment, whereas Reds specialize in One Power duelling.

graftonio @12
NO, the troubles started when the Aiel raided the Seanchan palace and found the contingency plans for a preemptive strike on Andor. The Aiel of that future weren't bound to the Dragon's Peace and therefore were chafing without an enemy to fight. So they manufactured one.

On the Red Ajah's failures:
Given how the One Power tends to get passed down bloodlines, you'd think somebody would have gotten the idea to keep track of known channeler bloodlines. Oh yeah right. Aes Sedai rarely have children, and the Black would have gotten to whatever records there are.

Isilel @20
It looks like Asha'man are finding ways around previous limitations. By the end of the book Logain has released Toveine. Another thing the Black Tower previously did not know how to do.
As for detecting the Taint, it's not like a lot of Aes Sedai have been thru the Ways. And it's quite different to intuitively feel a Taint in the surrounding environment than to go digging for it while in the process of channeling a power that is completely alien to what you're used to.
Even men have trouble describing the Taint clearly.
25. s'rEDIT
Just a quick response to the Cube:

Hey! What do you mean "anybody"? Be sure to speak only for yourself, sir!
26. Susurrin
Get better Leigh! Androl and Pevara rock even when they're being stupid because they do what nobody else in the WOT is fond of doing...talking out their issues.
27. AndrewB
Isilel @20 -- It was not that the Asha'man could not release a bondee. Rather, Androl did not know how to release the bond. Other Asha'man did (as alreadymadwithpevara @24 above noted).

Thanks for reading my musings,
Eric Wyatt
28. SunDriedRainbow
@23 Ways

There is a reference to a woman treated badly by men, who still forged her own path, or something similarly poetic that I believe is in reference to Morgase, but I don't think she has active screentime. I think it occurs during one of the Rand-Weaves-The-Pattern sequences.
Eric Wyatt
29. SunDriedRainbow
@23 Ways

There is a reference to a woman treated badly by men, who still forged her own path, or something similarly poetic that I believe is in reference to Morgase, but I don't think she has active screentime. I think it occurs during one of the Rand-Weaves-The-Pattern sequences.
Dixon Davis
30. KadesSwordElanor
Thanks Leigh from a newbi. So glad to have kindred souls to chat with. A shiny new angreal and a cask of Tam's best apple brandy to the first one to tell me who Ewan is. Hint: He is a Asha'man.
31. ZinaLu
So...I heard about the poor guy in Florida who fell into a sinkhole while sleeping in his bed and the first thing I thought to myself was Bubble of Evil....... any one else? I laughed and laughed at myself.
Today is my daughters 21st birthday and I've been reading and loving these books since before she was born.:)
Ken England Jr
32. Vambram
Thank you, Leigh, for everything that you have done for the WOT community! I hope that you start feeling better very soon.

Chapter 2 was one of my favorite chapters. Although there ARE consent issues between Pevara and Androl here, I still really like the way that those two interact in this chapter. Also, the start of their trusting each other and their friendship towards one another is a clear foreshadowing of upcoming scenes with them in AMOL.

Aviendha's sneaking into Elyane's tent and Elayne's reaction was honestly Laugh Out Loud funny for me both times I read AMOL. I think that was good writing on Brandon Sanderson's part, and I like how we got some good humor in before the tense confrontation coming up in chapter 3.
33. Freelancer
Leigh, vitamin C, lots of fluids, NO drugs! They mask out symptoms, but they also slow your own immune system to a crawl. Don't trade getting completely better soon for feeling slightly better (but not actually being healthy) quickly.

Pevara contends with Moiraine in these early scenes with Androl. No, not for awesomeness, though she holds her own in that regard. For slicing the truth so thin it's transparent.

It takes direct interrogation from Androl for her to admit that she's even remotely disturbed in the presence of male channelers, when the truth is that she's borderline insane with fear. So when Androl (as thepupxpert @21 says) starts playing around with his new toy -- the doubly shiny toy of saidar and Pevara's far superior strength -- it blows her gasket. She totally comes from together, and as soon as she has hold of saidar for herself, she does what she believes will ensure that this can never happen to her again.

For all of the reasons we know that it's beyond impolite to bond someone without asking, I refuse to judge Pevara. At the time she bonded him, she was not in possession of her faculties, and was acting out of sheer terror. I cannot relate to her terror, it doesn't make sense to me, since the two of them have been conversing as completely rational adults up to then, and Androl did nothing with saidar of a violent or threatening nature. But I can accept that with her personal history, and her chosen Ajah, and the global biases against channeling men, it is a very plausible, though irrational, terror.

Of course that doesn't make it right, but it does make it human.

As for Rand's note to Elayne, it is simple. Elayne is in a position where, being seen to comply with either the wishes or the commands of the Dragon, are not beneficial to Andor, nor to her rule. Rand knows that Elayne is more adept at the Game than he, it is not an attempt to fool her, he knows she'd see through that, and he counts on it. This way, she can publicly be seen to ignore the wishes of Rand al'Thor, not following his written suggestions, yet do what he actually hopes she will do. The subterfuge is for others (Egwene?) who still don't realize that he has a working wit, not Elayne.
David Corless
34. phonos
I thought the "Goat's left stone" was to do with kidney stones rather than its testicles... Apparently kidney stones are common in goats...
j p
35. sps49
Not much original for me to say by now :( except Hello, everyone!

I'm a bit disappointed; I finally finished the book last week (I also had to miss both signings in my area) and just now caught up again to the Re-read (Part 1 was laden with spoilers- that was the first and only time I read Leigh before the book)!

That's okay, there will be plenty of grist to mill soon enough.
36. Weezer
Morgase is in The Last Battle (p. 767). Raen and Ila are among those she coordinates sending to the battle to find the wounded and comment on her role.
Glen V
37. Ways
Weezer @36
Thanks for the heads up. I'd forgotten that little tidbit about Morgase in the Last Battle. It hardly qualifies as on-screen time, but an honorable mention is better than nothing.
Sean Dowell
38. qbe_64

Sorry for assuming to speak for everyone, but here are the facts at the current pace to help you decide.

1 prologue - 3 weeks
48 short - regular chapters - 48 weeks
1 insane - cruelly long chapter - 5 weeks?
Total - 56 weeks. 1 year + 1 month.

Pace to date:
beg TEoTW - 1/2 ACOS - Jan '09 - Feb '10 (6.5 books)
1/2 ACOS - 1/2 New Spring - Feb '10 - Mar '11 (4 books)
1/2 NS - end TGS - Mar '11 - Apr '12 (2.5 books)
TOM - somewhere aMOL - Apr '12 - May '13 (> 1.5 books)

You know SREDIT, now that I look at the numbers as well, it almost seems destined to take over a year. As it started Jan 20, 2009 I feel like Jan 14th or 21st 2014 would be a fitting end date.

Although, as a later comer to the re-read (like around TOM #23), it's been difficult for me to adjust from my reading pace of 20-25 posts per day (often at the deteriment of work and personal relationships in my life) down to 1 per week. I barely made it through TOM at that rate.
39. Looking Glass
Alreadymad @24: The Seanchan contingency plans brought Andor (and, indirectly, the other nations) into the war, but the fighting between the Aiel and the Seanchan had been going on for some time by that point. I want to say forty years, but at any rate since the period of the vision chronologically prior.

That war started because the Aiel were pissed at the Seanchan, mainly over the wise ones that were collared, and also didn’t really know what to do with themselves other than go to war. It’s possible that were Tuon around, the Aiel would have had less to object to on the Seanchan side, or that they would have been more willing to deal peacefully with her. I seem to recall they said something to the effect that the old empress had been fairly honorable but they weren’t so keen on the new one.
Pat Bachelder
40. PadraigBee
@39 Looking Glass

Did not think about it before reading your comment, but if the old empress (may she live forever) had been assassinated, would that imply the assassination was carried out by her own offspring ? I know it could have been anybody within the empire, but to think that it could be Tuon/Mat's child that was less than honorable brings me pause...what caused her to think the progress in the vision future needed to be changed to something less honorable (and kill the empress, may she live forever). I would like to think that Tuon/Mat would have brought her up better than that...
Valentin M
41. ValMar
I liked how the relationship between Androl and Pevara developed. It was refreshingly different from the usual way this works in WOT. There were big hurdles to be overcome but two decent people did it. The bondings are easy to wave away, especially with hindsight.
One thing about Pevara bonding Androl puzzles me- why did she bond him? Shielding and catching him with flows of Air seem some of the more obvious reactions if she was feeling threatened by the channeling man but didn't want to harm him. Maybe because she was already considering bonding and due to the stress of the situation...

Rand's letter to Elayne seems to me, besides what posters rightly pointed out already, like a private joke between them. I think it was cute and interesting- instead of just a generic "I wuv and miss you, please be there tomorrow". Their relationship really took off when El was teaching Rand Politics in Tear. This kind of stuff will aways have special meaning to them, IMO. Relatively speaking of course, given the subject matter of high politics.

Hm. I just realised I've written a whole two paragraphs entirely on relationships. When are the battles starting?!

edit: for clarification (and for spelling, yet again)
Dixon Davis
42. KadesSwordElanor
ValMar @ 41

I agree. It does seem a little strange that bonding would be how Pevara retaliated when to incapacitate him via air flow would have made more sense as a automatic reaction defense tactic. I contemplated a while and chalked it up to Pevara’s subconscious desire to bond Androl because they are begining to fall for each other.
43. Caseyy
Is there any mention of Mat in the Aiel-Future Vision?
If the superboys are releaved of their ta-veren-hood after the defeat of the DO, it seems Mat is in a very precarious position. Tuon's death, and war with the Randland nations and the Aiel, would seem to be his death sentance for sure.
44. SimpleFarmer
Loved your post about Elayne reading Rands letter.

Reminded me of The Princess Bride. Here is my version with Elayne playing the part of Vizzini and Rand playing the part of the Man in Black:

All Elayne has to do is divine from what she knows of Rand as to what to do. Is Rand the sort of man who would tell Elayne to come to the meeting or go to Camelyn.

Now, a clever man would tell her to come to the meeting, because he would know that only a great fool would go to Camelyn. Elayne is not a great fool, so she can clearly not choose to go to the meeting.

Rand must have known that Elayne is not a great fool, and would have counted on it, so she can clearly not choose to go to Camelyn.

Has she made her decision yet?

Not remotely. Rand wields Saidin and as everyone knows, Saidin is/was tainted and people who wield it cannot be trusted, and wielders are used to not being trusted, as Rand's sanity is not trusted by many.

So she can clearly not choose to come to the meeting. Rand would have suspected that Elayne would know that the taint has been cleansed and Rand can be trusted, so she can clearly not choose to go to Camelyn.

You'd like to think that Elayne is stalling at this point.

Rand has stolen her heart which means there is a strong bond between the two of them, and he could be trusting the strength of that bond to get her to come to the meeting, so she can clearly not choose to go to the meeting.

But, he has also fought the Forsaken and even lost an arm, and in losing the arm he has learned that he is mortal and the Forsaken could show up at any time, so he would want Elayne as far from him as possible, so she can clearly not choose to go to Camelyn.

Billy Abbey
45. felix
I, for one, don't mind the slow pace. We might as well savor the last book. I am in no rush to get to the end of the reread.

Feel better Leigh
46. Rand al'Todd
@44 - Loved your spin. Truely shows how Daes Dae’mar works on the logical decision making process.

Re all who are talking about WHY Prevara started the dual bonding process:
The Wheel weaves the Pattern as the Wheel wills. While the two of them may not be ta'veren, the abilities their link gives them plays an extremely important role in the last battle.

Come to think of it, Androl's entire history indicates that he just might be
ta'veren. Sure, he has a Talent with travel gates, but he also seems to have a ta'veren-like ability to make people follow him and a ta'veren-like ability to be at the right place at the right time. And a ta'veren-like ability to have people do seemingly odd things aroung him - like getting Prevara to bond him and getting Taim to put an "Androl" mask of mirrors on him while he steals the remaining Seals. The more I think about it, the more I think he just might be ta'veren. Sounds like a new question for a Brandon signing or for the future Encyclopaedia.
Dixon Davis
47. KadesSwordElanor
@46 Rand al’Todd

Neat theory. I like it a lot. But is seems that if not outright mention, BS would have had some character at least mention the possibility of Androl’s ta’verenness sarcastically. But I wouldn’t be floored to find out it was the case.

Androl is my fave character outside of the Two Rivers, Moiraine, Lan (who I think will be given honorary Two Rivers citizenship one day), and the source of the only tears I shed. More on that later in the reread.
Thomas Keith
49. insectoid
Later than I'd like, but oh well.

Great post as usual. Get better soon, Leigh—you gotta be well for JCon!

I recall thinking (in my notes) that Androl & Pevara's sudden double-bonding was... sudden. Not to say it was a bad idea—they do work well together later on. And that Two-Way Warder Telepathy thing is actually pretty useful.

Aviendha sneaking around (and Elayne's reaction) brings only one word to mind, and that word is: roflcopter. (Because that's basically what I was doing.) XD

In other news: my mom and I did purchase an Asha'man coat. We don't know how soon it'll ship, but hopefully it won't be too late. I did get my new red-and-gold Dragon pin in the mail. :D

I would have posted this ten hours ago, but our cable had chosen that time to go out inexplicably. *mumblegrumblerassapassacable*

Davyd @3:
I'll add your new icon to your button at my next opportunity.

SimpleFarmer @44:
LMAO!! But now he's given EVERYTHING away! XD

Alice Arneson
50. Wetlandernw
@ Leigh – Thanks for giving us a post even while dealing with the crud. Hope you recover soon! (And while we all have our own approaches to dealing with illness, I have to agree with Freelancer – don’t take the stuff that just masks the symptoms. Let the symptoms do their job of cleaning out your system, along with the help of good nutrition and LOTS of water. JMO.)

I’m not much of a fan of “no-fault” claims; “distributed fault” is usually closer to the truth. But this scene with Androl and Pevara… the way it escalated was so bloody realistic. She suggests the circle, he balks (the first time it came up). Now they agree to try it; he’s amazed and distracted; she panics; he finally notices and releases her; she lashes out without thinking; he lashes back… and voila! they’re bonded and can’t get out of it. To their credit, they don’t waste a lot of time in recriminations; once they figure out they can’t really change it, they move on – and some of the things they move on to are really, really awesome. But I did have to laugh at this scene. Not the bit that comes next, though; if the realization that your best hope for resistance to the Turning Machine may have been Turned already doesn’t straighten up your priorities in a hurry, I don’t know what will.

travyl @5 – FWIW, when a dear friend does something that is really cool, and gives you a much-needed laugh on top of it, calling her a “gem” is perfectly acceptable. It doesn’t really carry any condescending overtones.

Faculty Guy @14 – First, I agree with you that I don’t in the least mind a slower pace on the AMoL reread! However, the forthcoming Encyclopedia, while it is “far off” (probably about 2 years) is as definitely as humanly possible “a for-sure thing.” Harriet has been working on it for quite some time; they have a timetable laid out to include not only the writing, but also plenty of time for good artwork to be developed prior to publishing.

Aegnor @16 – I agree that the Red Ajah went askew, but it’s a pretty normal skewing when you think about it. And... I'm going to do a separate post on the subject - partly to avoid the appearance of jumping on you personally, which is not my intent, but also because this got really, really long.

Isilel @20 – Things change. In all the bonding back and forth, why is it so hard to believe that someone could figure out how to do the bond without the kiss? And who says Asha’man in general can’t release the bond? All we know is that Androl doesn’t know how. And… I’m still trying to figure out what your third paragraph is supposed to mean. How does this chapter prove that women are “very much less” rather than “separate but equal”? You really lost me on that one.

As far as we know, the women who had bonded Asha’man prior to the Cleansing were quite sure of the difference, but “trumpeting it far and wide” is a) not exactly an Aes Sedai thing to do and b) a bit difficult, what with the communication issues of a split Tower and deep divisions between the Ajahs. In an ideal world, of course Merise, Corele and Daigian would have been telling everyone that saidin was clean, and everyone would have listened and believed them. But this is a very non-ideal world; that’s the point, right?

Ways @23 – Morgase showed up once, organizing the workers who were searching the battlefield, looking for wounded among the fallen and picking up arrows and weapons that could be redistributed.

Freelancer @33 – Your editor took a break yesterday… ;) (Third paragraph made me blink a few times.) One additional comment on Pevara: she didn’t even consciously realize that she was bonding him until after she’d done it. Of course, Androl didn’t know that, nor that she would consider releasing him…

qbe_64 @38 – Thanks for the summary. When you put it like that, I’m pretty content with one chapter a week. My husband, on the other hand, would vote for the initial TEotW pace of 18 chapters/week, because he keeps hoping I’ll get over the WoT obsession sometime before retirement… (Little does he know!)

ValMar @41 – It’s pretty clear she didn’t consciously intend to bond him, but I suspect you’re right – the weave she subconsciously went for was the one that had been on her mind lately; although she didn’t say so (IIRC), she had to have been at least thinking about bonding Androl, if only because he was obviously the leader of the resistance.

Rand al’Todd @46 – I like the idea of Androl being ta’veren, though there’s no proof. It would certainly be interesting, given that Logain can see ta’veren and Logain was the one who promoted Androl so quickly, ostensibly due to his Traveling Talent… It would certainly be a great question for someone to ask!
Alice Arneson
51. Wetlandernw
So here’s that little essay on the typical Red Ajah attitude – which isn’t actually much different that the general attitude of… almost everyone except the male channelers. Note that the following is not “what I think is right” so much as “this is the way it would be seen by the survivors” – and this is what would logically come of it. And yes, I'm fully aware of the blame women - especially certain women - bear in all this, but the point is how attitudes develop. That old “history is written by the winners” thing? Well, in this case it was more “by the survivors,” but not many of the men were around to tell their side of the story, so the cultural biases developed along the lines of the women's biases.

Combining the actions of the men with the results of their actions, it’s not surprising that there was a certain lack of compassion. To wit: Lews Therin Telamon decided, without the concurrence of the Hall of the Servants, to proceed with his strike at Shayol Ghul. He was supported by men only. While their actions did result in patching the Bore and locking away the worst few of the DO’s minions, it didn’t exactly make everything all better. Now, not only were there still Dreadlords, Darkfriends and Shadowspawn to fight, but the best of the male channelers all went stark raving mad on the spot. Furthermore, all the remaining male channelers were affected by it and couldn’t be entirely trusted, which meant that much of what the Aes Sedai were accustomed to doing was, at best, severely weakened. (I’m pretty sure, from what we saw in Rand’s WayBack experience, that many of the women continued to work with the men as long as they dared, and some of them gave their lives along with some of them least-affected men to prepare for the future. But much as they might want to trust an individual, the knowledge that he would inevitably go mad would put a limit on that trust.)

Then you watching it progress – men helplessly caught in the madness, doing worse and worse things, destroying the world, destroying civilization, destroying everything, and what do you do? You steel yourself against any compassion, because these men (and at the time, there would have been a lot of them) have to be contained, they have to be stopped. The only thing you can do is get out there and shield them before they know you’re there (if you can), and then gentle them so they can’t do any more damage. By the time it’s over and the earth settles down after all the damage has been done… well, it’s quite a mess. It might not be entirely reasonable, but it’s pretty understandable that everyone’s attitude toward men who can channel is… less than compassionate.

(Incidentally, this is why I’ve always defended Egwene’s reaction to Rand in the beginning of ToM – not because she’s correct, but because any other reaction from her would be completely out of character. In fact, if she had immediately seen that Rand was right and gone along with him… aside from ruining the story, that would really have made a Mary Sue of her. And of course, the fact that they were both wrong, and they were both right, proves the point. Rand not only didn’t have a plan at the time, but he was wrong about breaking the Seals before going to Shayol Ghul; following him, mindlessly trusting that “He’s the Dragon, of course he must be right!” would have been disaster. Egwene’s own stubbornness might have made her take it too far, but then that’s why we needed Moiraine, right? Anyway, I continue to maintain that Egwene’s reaction was entirely reasonable, even though it wasn’t entirely correct.)

In a way, it might be more remarkable that there are any women like Pevara and Cadsuane, rather than being remarkable that there aren’t more. From our vantage point, it’s easy to see that these men – especially given that they only seem to show up every 5 or 10 years – should be treated as men with a terrible disease, and one for which the only cure is nearly as bad as the disease itself. But 3000 years of ingrained distrust of men who can channel lends itself pretty well to mistreatment of them in the name of the greater good. So you mostly have Reds going out in teams, out to contain and destroy the rabid animals, and a very, very few women capable of seeing them for normal human beings who, through no fault of their own, have fallen victim to a terrible curse.

It’s too bad they didn’t have a whole collection of paralis-nets for use by the Red Ajah from day one; the ability to approach a male channeler singly, without fear, and without the need to slap a shield on him instantly, would go a long way toward your ability to treat him like a human being, and would reduce the antagonism by several orders of magnitude. I’m privately convinced that much of Cadsuane’s success in that regard was the fact that she could talk to such a man with neither fear nor aggression, so that he had the opportunity to make the needful choice of his own volition. No man wants to live in the shadow of impending madness – but neither does he want to be trapped and treated like an animal. The Reds had no real choice but to shield a man instantly, before he could strike them; that doesn’t do much to make him feel cooperative, so… things go downhill rapidly. From there you develop a group mentality that simply assumes there’s only one way to do the job – and you end up with the typical Red attitude. For that matter, you end up with a whole lot more, but that’s a whole ‘nother essay.

Of course, if they’d started out with a whole collection of paralis-nets, it would have been a very, very different story.
Keith Buttram
52. Wookster125
@50, 51 Wetlandernw

Not much to say after that other than,


Nicely done.

Although I would add in response to Isilel @20 that the idea behind the man leading a one-to-one group with a woman was supposed to be a balance to the fact that women could link with one another without a man present at all, while men could not. At least, that is how I always understood it.
Valentin M
53. ValMar
Wetlander @ 50

Re: what Isilel meant about the lack of equality between men and women. I believe it's to do with the fact that in a link between one man and one woman it's the male channeler who has to lead the circle.

Re: the bondings. Actually bonding an Asha'man is what Pevara went to the BT for, so one of the things that must've been on her mind a lot is bonding and who to bond. This must've been a factor when she lashed out.
But back to my original puzzlement on this- the scene itself played out somewhat unexpectedly* for a bonding. For a moment I thought Pevara was about thump Androl around the room like a rag doll.

Wookster @ 52

That's how I understand it as well. Or, in other words, there's about 50% chance that you are right.

* btw, the term "unexpected" here is not loaded meaning "wrong" or anything like that
Alice Arneson
54. Wetlandernw
ValMar - I agree with you regarding the "unexpected" nature of the... turnup. It does seem more logical - or at least, more expected - that Pevara would shield him, at the very least. Could it be that she'd been working very hard, either consciously or subconsciously, to reject the impulse to shield every channeling man, and replace that with a willingness to bond one? Could she do that to the point where the bond-weave would be the involuntary reaction, rather than the shield-weave? She's a strong-minded woman...

Okay, I see the possibility of "a man must control a one-man/one-woman link" being taken as "men are better" - but I don't think it stands up to much examination. As Wookster points out, of course, men are completely unable to form a circle without a woman - and except for the very small circles, there have to be more women than men to make it work. A man can't initiate a link - ever. And if you go beyond the smaller circles, doesn't a woman have to control the circle? Lots of intricacies to the linking, and by no means all of them favor men. One of the themes of WoT has been the balance of men/women, and specifically of saidin/saidar. They aren't, ever, intended to be exactly the same except opposite, like negative and positive numbers. They are different and complementary, and either one without the other simply doesn't work as well.

Some clever author once said something to the effect that the most interesting aspects of a magic system are its limitations, and how the characters have to work within those limitations to accomplish their mission. I've always liked the fact that RJ built into his magic system some definite limits - and that the limits aren't exactly the same for men and women. Each half has its strengths and weaknesses, and in many cases even the users don't recognize their own strengths.

Then again, I'm not terribly prone to seek offense in difference, even when it's a gender-related difference. I rather like the differences between men and women, and I don't see any reason to assume that one must be "inferior" merely because it is different.
55. Weezer
@Ways - NP. Agreed that with all her time in the story, it's weird to not get any dialogue. But when this much condensing needs to happen, I guess she's better off than Romanda.
Valentin M
56. ValMar
Wetlander- about the bonding. I think that you may be right about the impulse- Pevara's was there to build bridges, after all. So she might've contiously been trying to avoid agressive reactions contrary to her instincts.

What it may simply come down to is that she might've been seriously considering bonding Androl already- or actually have decided to do so before the actual deed. And then one thing led to another, as per Freelancer, and other posters...

I got much deeper into this issue than I intended (not for the first time) but bonding without asking is pretty bad thing to do so it's worth exploring why a likeable character has done it.
57. Freelancer
Wetlandernw @50

You mean the phrase "come from together"? It's a common joke in the military when something goes totally wrong, or a piece of equipment breaks down. Instead of saying "came apart", you say "came from together". So yes, it was intentional.

On Pevara, I agree that she wasn't quite aware of what she'd done until she began to regain control. That was my point, that she was so afraid of being unable to release herself from the circle, a circle CONTROLLED BY A MAN, that she was out of her mind with fear. Of course, an Aes Sedai should still remain serene, calm, and controlled even so. /s Completely agree that bonding was the weave of choice in her terror, for two reasons. It was the "issue du jour" there in the Tower, the permitted bonding of soldiers and Dedicated by Aes Sedai in balance for the sisters bonded by Asha'man, and because it was a non-violent way for Pevara to gain control (or so she thought) over Androl to prevent him ever holding her prisoner in a circle again.

RE: Androl being ta'veren

Logain is many things, some good and some bad. What he definitely is, is tactically capable. If he had a ta'veren among the non-turned Asha'man, no matter how weak, he would have paid far more attention to him, would have made use of him in situations where the Pattern's will could tip in their favor. There's no evidence of such. As for the appearance of ta'verenesque traits, Androl is a natural leader, people respond to him because he is decisive, clearheaded, and not driven by emotion. He is also audacious in taking action when there's little choice left, and that leads to unexpected things happening. Fortuna favet fortibus. Not ta'veren.

Wetlandernw @54

Alice Arneson
58. Wetlandernw
Freelancer @57 - Well, that's one...

Also - ::grin:: Thought you would...
Glen V
59. Ways
That one was pretty obvious. Or am I just getting way too involved with this re-read? ::starts to examine priorities::
Glen V
60. Ways
Edited out double post.
Thomas Keith
61. insectoid
Wet @58:
Am I missing something? I read your comment @54 and didn't see whatever it is... *is puzzled*

Alice Arneson
62. Wetlandernw
Ways - clearly you're becoming as OC as (some of) the rest of us... :)

insectoid - see your shoutbox.
63. Pie'Oh'Pah
@42. KadesSwordElanor I contemplated a while and chalked it up to Pevara’s subconscious desire to bond Androl because they are begining to fall for each other.
So the commingling of saidar and saidin leads to an increase in the local personal gravity well? Interesting.
@44. SimpleFarmerRand has stolen her heart which means there is a strong bond between the two of them, and he could be trusting the strength of that bond to get her to come to the meeting, so she can clearly not choose to go to the meeting.
He started with stealing her heart; next is her kidneys, then it's her liver, and her lungs, and her pancreas ... you just can't trust these Dragons Reborn, can you?
64. aslane
First time posting, so I'd like to say thanks for making these re-reads!

I was kind of wondering to myself about bonding another channeler. It seems to me that bonding would be some sort of tied off weave connecting one person to another. I wonder if it could be broken, like a shield, in time by the person effected? Or maybe it's related in some way to compulsion (sp?) you cant effect it because breaking it would somehow mess with your mind? Anyway just wondering

Also i totally did the princess bride guy's voice in my head 44
Jonathan Levy
65. JonathanLevy
20. Isilel
Also, what happened to the necessity of kissing your bondee? Wasn't it how the bond was developed and how all other Asha'man had to do it?
46. Rand al'Todd
Re: Androl possibly ta'veren?
Logain can see ta'veren (LoC:30)
"You know, I saw a man once who will cause more trouble than I ever did. Maybe it was the Dragon Reborn; I don’t know. It was when they took me through Caemlyn after I was captured. He was far away, but I saw a . . . a glow, and I knew he’d shake the world. Caged as I was, I couldn’t help laughing."
It's not impossible that Logain recognized Androl as ta'veren, but we heard nothing about it. But it strikes me as strange. Would there really not have been a clue planted about this?

I think Sanderson simply magnified Androl beyond his original importance, which makes us cast about for explanations. I don't say this as criticism - the Androl sections are some of the best parts of the book. How often do you see a character introduced at the last minute get so much sympathy from the readers? It's an accomplishment to be proud of, for a writer.

50. Wetlandernw
In all the bonding back and forth, why is it so hard to believe that someone could figure out how to do the bond without the kiss?
Edit: I had a comment here about this, but on re-reading TPoD:26 I changed my mind, and deleted it.
Dimly she was aware of his horse plunging and dancing as her heels drummed its shoulder. Dimly she heard the man talking. “Easy, you lump-eared sack of coal! Calm down, sister. I’m not going to—Easy, you spavined mule! Light! My apologies, sister, but this is how we learn to do it.” And then he kissed her.
"I could have done without the extra bit," he sighed, patting the horse’s neck; the animal snorted, but it no longer leaped about, "yet I suppose it is necessary. You’re hardly a wife.
The "Extra Bit" sounds like his euphemism for the orgasm, and the kiss has always been part of the bond.

If "Extra Bit" refers to the Compulsion, he would not have apologized for it.
Dixon Davis
66. KadesSwordElanor
@ 63 Pie’Oh’Pah

Yeah, maybe (thought you might be poking fun at me a little with the “personal gravity well” thing by taking my “falling for each other” thing literally, you know “gravity”, “falling,” but I don’t think so?) So, let me clarify.

Although AS and Asha’man are somewhat super-human, they are still human. I think Pevara lashing out with saidar by bonding Androl is because they are beginning to bond, if you will. For instance, if Androl was off drinking at the tavern (with an acquaintance mind you, only travel in pairs remember) and this scene would have taken place with Evin, (or Ewan, no one got my joke @ 30, so no angreal or Tam’s apple brandy, read page 104 AMOL, error, I think?) I think Pevara would have lashed out with an air weave, or some such. For me, this scene serves to underscore the fact that AS and Asha’man, again, although somewhat super-human, are still human. Therefore, they are subject to the same stuff we are. For instance, your first reaction to a loved one who jumped out and scared you in the hallway would be different than the reaction to a stranger, because of the small window of subconscious recognition (still don’t think I’ve quite explained this very well and could be totally off).

@ 20 Isilel

Let me preface this with a “Please allow for the fact that I may be totally misunderstanding you, because I readily admit I’m very fallible.” Not sure what you meant by “In fact, it is almost Biblical.” I concede that that Bible has been USED to justify women being subservient or less, and all sorts of atrocities have been committed using the Bible as justification. But I don’t think it is what the Bible teaches, or what everybody universally accepts as the Bible’s teachings. In the Garden, Woman has the decency to blame the snake. Man looks at the creator of the universe and says “Hey, that woman YOU put here, it is her fault.” In other words it is Creator of the Universe’s fault; after all God put the woman there. In Ephesians (paraphrasing) it states “wives submit to you husband as to the Lord.” “Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.” I can’t imagine anything more subservient than getting the hell beat out of you, crucified, and being ridiculed by a people you came to save.

I promise I’m not trying to start a religious debate and this is probably the wrong place for this, especially for a newbi, so I’m sorry. Just pointing to the fact that it sounds as if your saying the Bible condones women being less or subservient, which, to me, it clearly does not. Please don’t kick me off if I’m out of line here guys. I have finally found a home.
Valentin M
67. ValMar
KSE @ 66

Good point that Pevara wouldn't have reacted the same way, i.e. bonding, if it was a different Asha'man there. If she agreed to a link at all.

Also, you are not the first one to quote/reference the Bible here in some way or another and won't be the last. It's not something you need to worry about.
68. Stromgard
@2 Braid_Tug

Does anyone else think that the Green Ajah is seriously underperforming comapred to other Ajahs in this series. They are supposed to be these awesome Valkyre Amazon Sorceresses, and still we seem to have fewer Awesome Greens than from most other Ajahs...

I mean, there is Cadsuane, but really, I have a) mixed feelings aout her awesomeness, and b) she is practically not part of the Tower organisation, nor has she been for many decades...

And there is Elayne. But she is a) not trained by the Green Ajah AT ALL, b) hasn't taken the oaths, c) hasn't done the AS test, and d) not been traditionally raised, so she barely qualifies as a Green IMHO.

The rest just feels a bit meh. There is Leane, but she was a Blue for decades, and has been a Green for less than a year, so...

Merise is promising if you ask me, and should have been given more screen time, and Seonid has potential, but the rest...

Alanna is just acting wierd, Joline is full of herself, and even the Ajah heads Myrelle and Adelorna fails to shine. (Myrelle gets a Gold Star for keeping warders alive though.)

The other Ajahs have more awesome:
Blue: Moiraine, Siuan, and Egwene should she have chosen one.
Red: Pevara, also Gabrelle.
White: Saerin, and Seaine. (It is a bit amusing that the reason that Seaine got her moment of awesome, starting the BA hunt, was because she misunderstood things, which is ironic since she is White, but the BA hunt is still awesome in my book. The hunters are possibly the bravest AS in the whole series, with the exception of the equally brave Siuan, Moiraine and Verin.)
Yellow: Nynaeve! And also, Romanda, who figured out Aran'gar.
Brown: Verin! Verin Verin Verin Verin! She is so awesome that she counts as several! :-D
Gray: Even the Gray has Yukiri, Merilille, Merana and Annuora, who are very good at what they do, even if what they do is almost always not very exposed upon.
Valentin M
69. ValMar
Tarna was Red too. Lelaine was very formidable Blue, though she sailed a bit too close to Pedron Niall territory (non DF with very questionable morals).
On a side note, aren't more Reds BA than not, that we know of? I think I might go and have a little survey.
Edit- to answer my own question, nope, the Reds aren't overrepresented as BA. Though, looking at the Encyclopedia list of BA AS Javindhra isn't included and I thought she was BA.
Dixon Davis
70. KadesSwordElanor
@66 ValMar

Thanks for the validation & confirmation.
71. Stromgard
Meh! Forgot Silviana on my awesome AS list. Shame on me.
72. Stromgard
I'm not sure how much awesome either Teslyn, Tarna or Toveine is, actually. It kinda seems to me that most of their endeavours have ended in failure, though mostly for no fault of their own, but due to circumstance impossible to foreseen. (Seanchan invasion, Taim joining the Dark Side, and Elaidas stupidity.)

Also, Gabrelle is Brown, I was certain that only Red sisters attacked BT. Hm. On a side note, I wonder if Alviarin tried to send as competent AS as possible, to hurt the White Tower more, or as incompetent as possible, to maximize the chance of Elaida's failure?

Concerning Lelaine, well. She is an awesome plotter and manipulator. However, she is exclusively using it for her own benefit as far as I can tell, and she falls short compared to her nemesis, Romanda, who not only figured out Aran'Gar and Delana, which was a CMOA, but also considered sacrificing herself and submitting to punishment, should it be Accepted status, stilling, or even execution, to unite the WT before TG happened. We see nowhere that Lelaine is considering the same thing, quite the opposite, Lelaine is mainly concerned with her own elevation. Which is probably why the sitters rally to force Cadsuane to take the stole, because, you know... Lelaine is alive. :-) While being undoubtedly made of great leadership material, Lelaine seriously lacks the unselfishness needed to be a good Amyrlin. Romanda, on the other hand, is not nearly as qualified as a leader. If Cadsuane hadn't lived, I'd vote for Moiraine or Saerin.
Jordan Hibbits
73. rhandric
Well, I'm late to the party, add another to the list of being sick...

Anyways..I don't have much to say at this point, most has been covered. But Re: Pevara's bonding of Androl and the reason. Remember that the Warder bond has some form of ability to act similarly to Compulsion - Alanna tried to use it on Rand, and failed. Pevara was more fearful than any time in her life except for when her family was killed (IIRC; we haven't gotten to the scene where she mentions that), and lashed out. In addition to what everyone else has said, Bonding him would allow her to (try to) control him -- even though it doesn't work on channelers, she doesn't know this.
Rob Munnelly
74. RobMRobM
@68 - agree with your general point but Egwene has always been clear in text that she would have picked Green rather than Blue.
Alice Arneson
75. Wetlandernw
aslane @64 - Welcome! It's fun to see so many new folks joining in for the last book. As for the Warder bond... In some ways it's like Compulsion or Healing: a weave that is laid on a person, does its job and dissipates. That is to say, as I understand it, the weave itself dissipates but the effect does not. If you cut someone with a sword, the sword doesn't have to stay there in order for the cut to be a real wound, right? I think weaves that affect a person (whether mind or body) are often the same - you don't have to either maintain or tie off the weave in order for its effects to remain. Some do, of course; a shield, or bonds of air - things like that have to be held. But stilling doesn't have to be held; it's a bit like the permanent version of a shield, right? Compulsion doesn't have to be held; the effect on the mind remains once the compulsion is set. That's an interesting case, actually, because a strong mind can throw off the effects of a lower-level Compulsion. (Thinking out loud, as it were, so you're just getting a thought-meander here, not proof...) I don't recall seeing anything, though, that would lead me to think that the Warder-bonding weave has "levels of strength" aspects like Compulsion, though; it's a weave that creates a specific link between two people, and I think it would have to be specifically released by the one who created it. So I believe the answer would be no, you can't break out of a Warder bond. But that's just my opinion.

KadesSwordElanor @66 - Welcome! And I agree: the Bible does not teach women as inferior beings; merely different. Both made in the image of God, and both equal heirs of grace. Roles may be different, but - in spite of the way sinful humans* tend to interpret it - that doesn't mean that the Bible teaches that one is in any way a lesser being. I think RJ understood that, and he tried very hard to build a world in which the magic system had a balance between the male and female halves - different, but equal in value.

*"Sinful humans" means all of us, by the way. I would never try to claim that I, or anyone else here, is "sinless". But it is our human nature that leads us to abuse and misinterpretation of the truth.

Stromgard @68 - You started something. Later today, I'm going to spend some time on this thought, but on a quick scan, I noticed that for most of the Ajahs, most of the AS I actually remember are the BA members. The rest have one or two that we actually got to know a bit, but most of them are... not terribly significant, and usually there just to provide a counter-irritant to Our Heroes stupider moves. ;)
77. AndrewB
Stromgard @68. I do not think consider Gabrelle, Merilille or Merana to be all that. If you need another Green, you could have picked Vandene.

Thanks for reading my musings.
Birgit F
78. birgit
There is something remaining with compulsion that Ny could see in the brain of the compelled person. The bond likely is similar. Could someone like Ny delve a person and figure out if they are someone's Warder?
Stefan Mitev
79. Bergmaniac
The Greens have Cadsuane and Elayne, which is more major contributors than any other Ajah except the Blue. And Egwene is practically a honorary Green. I think they were fine overall. Sure, they had their moments of plot convenient incompetence, but so did the other Ajah too (and almost everyone in the series).
Deana Whitney
80. Braid_Tug
@ 65, JonathanLevy: I’m confused by your post to Free. Were you using the Logain quote to say Androl was ta’veren?
Because in that quote is Logain talking about when he saw Rand before Rand fell into the Palace gardens. Sorry, I don’t have my book with me to quote Rand’s account of that moment.

@ 68, Stromgard:
I always felt the Grays and Whites got overlooked as a whole.
Verin and one of the twins was Browns, so yea for the historians / researchers.

But your post highlighted how many named Grays we got. So maybe only the Whites got really overlooked. But there was also many times when it was said they are the smallest Ahja.
Does anyone wear a White Ahja shawl at the convention?
Alice Arneson
81. Wetlandernw
Re: the Warder bond - It's quite possible that Nynaeve would be able to Delve someone and see the bond-weave; if she could see the compulsion web and the taint, why not? Which leads me to sort-of-correct my earlier statement. There must be something of the weave itself that remains in the person, at least for "mind-altering" weaves like Compulsion; however, there's no evidence that Healing leaves any kind of web, or any aftereffect except the healed body (and the exhaustion of having been healed, in the old method). Still, I don't believe it's the same as a "tied-off" weave, and I don't believe the Warder bond is either. It's a "set weave" if you will. Something that is put in place and, to some extent and in some way, holds its shape once in place - but without further effort or active "tying off" of the one who set it. Interesting...

ValMar @69 - There was a lot of speculation that Javindhra was Black, for various reasons, but all we know is that she was a Red Sitter, assisted with Elaida's coup, and went with Pevara & co. to the BT. At some point, she began to act very strangely, but whether that was because she was Black and Taim found out, or because they'd Turned her, or just because she's a bit of a nutcase... we don't know. By the time AMoL starts, though, it doesn't matter: if she was already Black, she was; if not, she's been turned and she is now.

Stromgard @72 - The group who went with Pevara was all Reds, but the first group of fifty under Toveine was a mixed group. We know that Alviarin was careful to make sure there were no Blacks in that group. Of the names we know, there were three Red (Toveine, Jenare & Lemai), two Gray (Akoure & Adrielle), two Yellow (Carniele & Desandre), a Brown (Gabrelle), a White (Ayako) and a Green (Aisling). That's only ten of the fifty, but it appears to have been pulled from all the Ajah's.

AndrewB @79 - Vandene is a good one, agreed; however, I have to say that in very difficult circumstances, the other three proved themselves to be quite resourceful.
82. colinbc
It's probably beaten to death by this point, but I see the Pevara-Androl sequence as the moral equivalent of a mutually drunken hookup. "Sober", Pevara would have asked Androl, and I think she would have had good reason in expecting his answer to be yes. Personally, I think she'd halfway decided on him the moment he showed up at her door and gave his speech. Similarly, I think if Androl asked Pevara, she might have dithered and hemmed and hawed for a bit, but ultimately she would come to the conclusion that the Towers must work together and that accepting the reciprocal Bond would mean as much as a Grand Symbol coming from a high-ranking Red as it would mean to be with a man who quite clearly fascinates her.
Continuing the metaphor, the two of them "woke up the next morning", decided that while they probably wouldn't have done it right that minute "sober", they probably would have gotten around to it eventually, and there were other things on their plate, so best to just keep calm and carry on.
Contrast that to the guile and deception Alanna used to draw close enough to Rand to Bond, and I think the mens rea aspect justifies our differing opinion of the three similar cases.
83. Freelancer
RE: Javindrha

I have trouble considering a Turned Aes Sedai as immediately related to the Black, since those sisters chose their extra ajah, and that is a concrete distinction to me. Turned channelers have been violated against their will, and are victims.
Don Barkauskas
84. bad_platypus
Stromgard @72: Expanding on Wetlandernw's answer @81, consider this excerpt from the WH Prologue (Gabrelle speaking):
"...are we fifty-one sisters united, or do we revert to being Browns and Reds, Yellows and Greens and Grays? And poor Ayako, who must be regretting that the Whites insisted on having a sister included."
From this phrasing, it seems that Ayako was the only White and each of the other Ajahs had at least two sisters included. Probably the Reds are the majority, but I can't find further definitive information.
Alice Arneson
85. Wetlandernw
Freelancer @83 - My bad. Calling a Turned sister "Black Ajah" isn't accurate. She may be a Dreadlord now, but even speaking literally, she never joined the Black Ajah and is not (necessarily) part of their structure or heirarchy. In fact, most of them probably report to Taim rather than Alviarin. So you're entirely correct. If Javindhra was already BA, she was BA. If not, she's been Turned and serves the Shadow now.

Incidentally, I don't know if this has been published elsewhere yet, but someone asked in our general Q&A if Turning can be reversed. I can't do an exact quote, but his response was something like, "Well, Nynaeve would certainly believe so." Which, in context, indicated (to me, anyway) that it really wasn't answered in the notes because it wasn't going to happen in the books, but we should all know that Nynaeve has done "impossible things" before, and there's at least a possibility that she could figure out how to do it. She'd certainly try, anyway.
Valentin M
86. ValMar
Wetlander @ 81

Yes, I don't recall Javindhra ever been confirmed as BA. I believe it's reasonable to assume that she is. Given her behaviour and change of opinions in the context of the story, the simplest explanation is that she is BA. If she isn't, IMO, we would've been shown that she isn't and the clues that suggested that she is were red herring. I think that's how these things usually work out in stories. Of course, this is a minor matter and Brandon had a lot on his plate already.

Freelancer @ 83

Turned AS absolutely must not be considered BA. In my view they simply aren't. Victims indeed. When I read a scene with Turned Tarna I think "poor you", not "you monster". Even "Darkfriends" is not appropriate I believe (like for the turned Asha'man).
The term "Turned" is right when not lumped with the another DF channelers like original BA, otherwise the overall "dreadlords" should do, IMO.
If I have given the impression of thinking otherwise when talking about Javindhra, in a previous post, it wasn't my intention. I don't recall her being described with the telling signs of being Turned so this wasn't on my mind at all when I decided that she was BA.

edit- on the one hand I'm really pleased to see Wetlander's post @ 85 for obvious reasons, on the other, because I took so long in writing mine (I was actually watching something on TV at the same time) it seems like I plagiarised her...
Also, I see now that it was she that was the culprit calling Turned AS BA @ 81. I knew I was way too smart to do that!
87. Freelancer
But with a guilty conscience, it would seem...
Dixon Davis
88. KadesSwordElanor
Got to believe being turned can be healed. Got to go, Scare Crow Boat is performing at a batchelor party
Valentin M
89. ValMar
Freelancer- conscience as guilty as mind too smart.
90. Freelancer
Yeah, I know. As Maverick said, I had the shot, I saw there was no danger...
Janet Hopkins
91. JanDSedai
Re: the less-than-awesomeness of the Green Ajah

Remember that the long-time Sitter for the Green was BA. She was probably squelching any plans to train the sisters in battle tactics until it was too late.
Jeff Schweer
92. JeffS.
I'll agree that a turned channeler is not BA although I've been struggling with what to call them all along. Since it seems as if their free will is gone, at best you could call them power wrought cannon fodder.

It's like a cross between a Psychic lobotomy and tainted compulsion weave. Sometimes I get the image of the angel on one shoulder and the devil on the other thing from the cartoons and such but instead of the angel getting beat up, the poor thing gets balefired and ceases to exist into the past. No conscience means no mercy.
Thomas Keith
93. insectoid
Got a short JCon/Re-read button update. Finally got a new ink cartridge, and with the help of some special coated paper, came out with a pretty darn good result. This is the final assembled button:

If you've been following my progress thus far, you may notice I added a "metallic" filter to the text, to make it pop out more. The colored ring, as you can see, only shows a little on the front.

Now, I just have one question for those of you on the list of 28 or 30 who are going to the Con (and thus getting a button): do you have any problem with pin-backs? I have some plain-backs (that's what the one in the photo is), which you can attach any ordinary magnet to, or one of the self-adhesive kind they supplied with the backs. (These last don't seem very useful for attaching to clothing, even with a strip of metal on the other side.) The "gripper tag" kind of magnets are kind of costly (like a buck and a quarter apiece), so I'm kind of leaning towards making some of each (say, a pin-back to wear, and a magnetic one to stick on the fridge). What do you guys/gals think?

Thomas Keith
94. insectoid
Faculty Guy @14:
Why, certainly... I'd be happy indeed if we still had Re-reads in, say, 2015. That is, of course, all up to Leigh.

Man-0 @15:
Naughty, naughty!

Ryamano @17:
That's an interesting point. On the other hand, Elayne was a bit distracted talking politics.

Isilel @20:
Good arguments, as always.

Free @33:
Well said!

SimpleFarmer @44:
"Truly, you have a dizzying intellect." XD

Wet @62:
*feels sheepish*

JLevy @65:
Your comment seems a little mixed-up...

Stromgard @68:
Nice analysis!

Free @83:

Roger Powell
95. forkroot
Back to the Green Ajah:

Adelorna had her moments. Remember that she was the one who lead the Ajah heads to nominate Egwene to replace Elaida. Also - she had a nice little talk with Egwene letting her know that the Greens had come around and accepted her as "one of theirs" even though Egwene had not technically been raised from any Ajah. This gave Egwene a nice little boost at the time.

Alanna also had some MOAs most off-screen during the defense of the Two Rivers. She (and Ihvon) helped much more than Tomas and Verin did (and we know why now.) And of course she saved Perrin's life there too.

Of course Alanna is justly criticized for bonding Rand against his will - but that bond did a lot to help him survive when the Tower AS kidnapped him. And, to her credit, when given the chance at the very end she "did the right thing" to release the bond in time.

Speaking of Ihvon - I wonder what ever happened to him? If we assume that Moridin did indeed kidnap Alanna from Tear, he was probably trying to move North to find her. I suppose he ended up in the LB and went "berserker" and died when Alanna did.
Karen Fox
96. thepupxpert
@95 fork and the group - Was it ever determined that Alanna could sense that Rand had bonded the other 3 women? I still don't feel that she had any right to keep the bond and should have let him go way before she finally had to. Was there ever any other incidence where a warder was bonded by more than one AS? I know Myrelle had multiple warders but were they all bonded to each other? I'm thinking no. Also, were Avi, Elayne & Min all bonded to each other?
Todd Mulholland
97. dtmulhol
@96 - Alanna passed out for a couple days when the three bonded Rand, IIRC. I don't have the reference, but as I recall, she knew he'd been bonded again, but didn't know who.
98. Freelancer
Winter's Heart, Chapter 25, Far Madding. Alanna demands that Rand tell her what he did that knocked her out for three days. He tells her he allowed someone of his choosing to bond him. Alanna flies into a rage and tells him that he belongs to her. Rand tells her to release the bond, and she responds that she will only do so if he tells her who bonded him, and if she approves. He won't, so she won't.

Alanna didn't know that it was a Warder bonding that happened to Rand (I'm not even sure it was the bonding itself that decked Alanna, it may have been the exercize which followed), and she cannot sense the other three at all through it.

Also, as far as we've seen, there's no evidence that the three ladies gained any sort of bonding to one another. Elayne and Aviendha already have the first-sister bond, but that doesn't give the sense of awareness that a Warder bond does. It seems to be simply all of them bonded to Rand.
99. s'rEDIT
Free@98: If you changed all to each in your last sentence, it would help its clarity.
Alice Arneson
101. Wetlandernw
Way to snag the hunny! ;)

FWIW, I've been thinking that (@98) but hadn't sucked up the wherewithal to verify and write up the thoughts. Thanks for taking care of that. Gem.
102. Rand al'Todd
Insectoid @93: I like the button. I'm looking forward to getting mine at JordonCon. I, for one, would certainly be willing to make a reasonable donation to cover some of the expenses.

Re Alanna's bond with Rand -
IIRC, she was with Verin at the time. Have we ever seen evidence either way to conclude that she bonded him due to Verin's mini-compulsion?

We see with Morgase that people who have done something odd under compulsion will go to fairly great lengths to justify to themselves that the act was due to their own decision making, rather than attributing it to outside influence.

Also, we see that Verin made the Dumai Wells captives pledge to Rand, presumably because she thought it would help him in the long run. Possibly she thought that having Alanna bond him would also be to his benefit. (And she knew that if SHE bonded him, there was a good chance that someone in her Darkfriend chain of command would find out and order her to use it to do something harmful to him. Also, it appears that even the normal warder bond makes it hard for a sister to conseal the fact that she is a Darkfriend from her warder. While Verin was really a mole and might not give off the right signals through a bond, Rand's failure to react to her as a DF might have jeopardized her undercover status. Thus it had to be a third party she could control or influence to some degree.)

If Verin compelled Alanna to bond Rand, then the dregs of the compulsion, combined with her self-justification after the fact, would have made her very relunctant to release the bond. Obviously at the end, Alanna knew that there was no possible remaining good that could come from the bond, only harm, so she released him.
103. Freelancer
Rand al'Todd

No, there has been no evidence that Alanna's choice to bond Rand was due to any outside force. There are reasonable arguments that Verun did so, but nothing in the text strongly supports it. On the other hand, there is a great deal of evidence that Alanna had already considered bonding any or all of the Ta'veren Trio. Her first appearance with any dialogue, giving a lesson to Egwene and Nynaeve on the trip from Fal Dara to Tar Valon, demonstrates her exaggerated interest as she queries the girls about them, with greatest focus on Rand. Faile gave her a very direct threat for obviously considering bonding Perrin while they were all in Emond's Field.

The best explanation for Alanna's behvaior is that she is a stubborn, passionate, bull-headed Green. She believed it best if the Dragon Reborn were tied to, and under the control of, a sister via the Warder bond, so she did it. Little did anyone yet know that you cannot Compel a Warder if they too can channel (or apparently, if they are of the same gender, i.e. Birgitte). Once done, she refuses to release Rand, at first because of the connection forced upon him to the White Tower. After Rand is bonded by his ladies, she refuses to release him, partly out of spite, partly because she supposes that he has chosen a barely trained sister and considers it inadequate. And at the end of the day, the bond lets at least one sister have an idea where he is and how he is, and she won't give that up.
Thomas Keith
104. insectoid
Rand al'Todd @102:
Hmm, you weren't on my list. *facepalm*
Fear not, you've got a button now.

Perhaps I should list who I do have a button (image) made for:
aprildmoore (Green)*
BillinHI (Blue)*
Braid_tug (Brown)*
Branwhin (Brown)*
chaplainchris1 (Gray)*
forkroot (White)*
Insectoid (Green)*
JanDSedai (Red)*
Lannis (Blue)*
leighdb (Green)*
Man-0-Manetheran (Brown)*
Misfortuona (Camouflage)* ;)
moondivatx (White)*
Rand al'Todd*
R.Fife (Yellow)*
rossnewberry (Green)*
Scissorrunner (Green)*
Sulin (Green)*
Sweetlilflower (White)*
Tektonica (Green)*
travyl (Yellow)*
Ways (Brown)*

A * indicates that button has been printed and pressed. I will update this list as often as needed.

An amazing 34 altogether (though several are what I'll call Honorary Re-readers, who AFAIK spend time primarily with other parts of the WoT fandom). If you're going to JCon and your name isn't listed, please let me and Tektonica and Man-0 know. And, of course, if you have an Ajah or other color preference (for what it's worth), let me know and I'll add it.

*updated 4/3*

Dixon Davis
105. KadesSwordElanor
Wish I could go to JCon. Looks/sounds like so much fun.
Debra Bradford
106. trotBelatrot
I woke this morning and remembered I had this dream last night. I have never experienced a dream like this before.

I am on an island, running thru the woods. I am happy! Rand and I have had such a woderful day until it started raining. Even though it is raining and my long hair keeps getting in my face, obscuring my vision, I am happy, happy. I am with Rand. I really do prefer short hair though. I am also getting exasperated with the mud. I don't think I will ever get use to mud. It keeps trying to suck off my shoes but I am not mad. I am happy, I am with Rand. We are runing to get out of the weather, I am not sure where exactly we are going. I trip and fall. Sticks have pulled on my long skirts, causing me to fall. It is aggravating, I use to have better balance. Rand stops and turns, tries to pick me up but I slap his hands away exasperated. I won't let him carry me. I do hold his hand and again we start to run. Run to get out of the rain. I see snakes and I jump to avoid them. They do not scare me, I've never been scared of snakes. I am happy - a bit pissed off with all this rain and mud- but happy.
Suddenly we are out of the woods and on a beach. I see a beautiful wooden boat pulled up to shore with a ramp leading up onto it. As we get closer I realize it is unlike any boat I have seen before. It is smaller (although it can hold several people), has bright lights inside and is smoking andrattling. I believe it must be like those motor carriages you see on the roades now a days. Rand and I walk up the ramp and into the boat cabin. There is a round wooden table with chairs. I turn to Rand and ask him if he can drive this boat. He smiles replying "I have not been idling my time away, I have been learning many new things. I have learned to pilot this type of boat." Then my dream shifted
Time has passed-Rand and I are sitting at the round table waiting on someting. Suddely there is a commotion at the front of the boat and the boat starts bobbing. Nynaeve walks thru the door wearing a lovely gray dress with her hair draped over her shoulder in a long braid. Rand has risen to greet her. She walks up to him and thumps him on the forehead with her palm. "You great lummox" she says then grabs his head in both hands for a second. When she releases her hands she says "you'll do" and steps back. Rand laughs and says "I missed you too Nynaeve". Nynaeve leaves to get tea from the kitchen. Elayne lunges towards Rand, wrapping her arms around him and kissing him. Oh Elayne, she is so beautiful in her blue gown. She is such a powerful ruler, a true queen. She is so outgoing, outspoken, talented. I am so proud of her. I sit there thinking of how much I love her and Rand. I am startled. I had not noticed the third woman enter the room. She has walked up and is now standing right beside me. I look up to see she is holding a very large book in both hands. She has short dark hair starting to turn gray. SHOCK
My dream shifts again
Now I am the girl with the book. Time has passed. Rand and I are sitting at the table a little apart from each other. Nynaeve, Elayne and Aviedha are standing along the other side of the table laughing and catching up with each other. Rand reaches towards the book. "Not another one, don't you think there have been enough books written about me!". I too reach for the book. I tell him that this book is different. It is special. It has pictures in it for one thing. It is also magical. I open the book and begin to read the first page. (Now at this point I do not remember what I read. I do know that in my dream it was something beautiful like poetry, the words flowing together, but I can't remember it now). The girls have stopped talking and are paying attention to Rand and me. I turn to the next page in the book. This page is filled with paintings of all Rand's friends and aquaintances. This is the magic page. If you concentrate on one person's image it will expand to fill the whole page. When you turn your attention to another person that image will expand and the other will shrink. Now I tell the others that if you flip a coin over a person's image the coin will come down heads if the person can channel and tails if the person cannot channel. I demmonstrate by flipping a coin over the image of Mat and it comes down tails. I flip a coin over the image of Perrin and it comes down tails. I flip a coin over the image of Rand (the painting is of Rand before he changed - old Rand) and it comes down on edge and begins to spin.
Rand slams the book shut on top of the coin. "I do not need to read about my like, I lived it after all" he says. I take his hand, I feel such pity for him. He did have such a terrible life for several yeaers. Suddenly I realize he is feeling pity for me. We stare at each other both feeling each of our pity for the other. As we atare the pity turns slowly to love for each other. Slowly the love turns to happiness. We are both very happy. We smile at each other.
And my dream was over. I can't stop running it thru my mind. Like I said never had a dream like this.
Dixon Davis
107. KadesSwordElanor
trotBelatrot @106

That is crazy. I had a dream one night that two guys kidnapped my daughters. I ended up chopping their heads off with callandor as they pleaded for forgivenss. There was alot more to the dream but that is the only WOT part. One question. Did Rand look like Rand-Rand or Moridin-Rand? You said the painting in the book was pre-change but never mentioned appearance otherwise. Was he hot?
Ron Garrison
108. Man-0-Manetheran
Insectoid - These buttons are going to be great. Thanks.

JordanCon - Anyone here who is on Facebook but doesn't know there is a special page for WoT Re-Readers, it can be found at
You will also find some very interesting things there too!
Ron Garrison
109. Man-0-Manetheran
Insectoid, Tektonica -
Add another re-reader to the Bunker Guest List: aprildmoore
William Carter
110. wcarter
Wow, that's awesome insectoid. Thanks
Thomas Keith
111. insectoid
Man-0 @109:
Okay, can do! I'll ask her if she wants a green border (for Cadsuane).

Tricia Irish
112. Tektonica
It wouldn't be JordanCon without April!! I think she was a Rereader long before most of us.

I'll add Rand al'Todd to my list too.

Carry on.....
Edward Phippen
113. Grimwanderer
Hello all. Just thought I would add my 2p regarding Rand's letter to Elayne. *

I see this as more than just reverse psychology and more than a way of telling Elayne that he wants her at the meeting (while avoiding giving the impression of telling her what to do). Both of those are true... but it is also something more.

Had Rand simply said that he wanted or needed her at the meeting, Elayne might have done otherwise out of stubbornness. He used reverse psychology -- knowing that she would see through it -- but also knowing she would be curious about what he was planning.

Creating curiosity, or wrapping something in mystery, draws people in. They want to know what you are really planning, what you are really trying to achieve. It is human nature. This was basically what Rand inadvertently did way back in the Great Hunt when he became the toast of the town in Cairhien.

So (in my view), Rand wrote the letter asserting that Elayne go to her people, knowing she would see through it, but knowing this would tip the scales just enough that she stayed for the meeting. It did also (as NotInventedHere said @ 13) give Elayne cover that she was not simply doing what she was told by the Dragon Reborn. All in all, not a bad bit of game of houses in all that.

I also enjoyed the storyline with Pevara and Androl throughout the book. Their growing relationship was an unexpected highlight. In light of how much screen time they get in the book, I do wish they had been given more to do in their grand finale than tricking some dreadlords into a steadying. They came to represent one of the core themes of the series (male / female working together) yet their big victory at the last battle was underwhelming for me.

Lastly, best wishes to those going to dragoncon. Wish I could join you. I will be traveling home to the US for a couple weeks, but will be my father (currently in the hospital) and other family members.

* I apologise if my thoughts echo what has been said by others. Haven't had a chance to read all the comments yet. :-)
Ken England Jr
114. Vambram
@133 Grimwanderer
Good summary of the reasons why Rand wrote what he did in that letter to Elayne. Those ideas have been posted before, elsewhere, but nevertheless, I agree with your summary.

As for Androl and Pevara, I am also a WOT fanatic who enjoyed the scenes and plot line with those two. I agree with your views concerning Brandon Sanderson's most controversial pairing in AMOL.
Some fan forums have a very vocal minority that constantly complained about Androl and Pevara for over a month after AMOL was released. However, I am happy to say that I enjoyed their scenes and it does not matter to me that Androl and Pevara had more "screen time" in the book than did Logain or some of the other previously established characters.
115. alreadymadwithlinking
I've been trolling thru the text on forming the link between these two and Nynaeve and Rand. And well... the difference isn't that large. I figured I might as well put this out now.

The main problem is that forming the link is intuitive for these people. A lot of the descriptions hinge on how they perceive it.

I don't have the complete text for this one, but it seems the main difference is that people keep saying Nynaeve had to yield control to Rand voluntarily.

Maybe in Nynaeve's mind that's what she wanted to do.

The fact is, that by its very nature, a one-male-one-female link must always be led by the male. The female cannot yield control voluntarily. It can't be voluntary when she never has a choice. It simply defaults to the male once the circle is complete. The text of Winter's Heart yields this. And it's critical that it is referred to as a circle.

Nynaeve walked Rand thru getting ready to link. "Reached, but did not seize it" is the actual text in Winter's Heart. Then when she was ready, drew on saidin thru him, much as she would saidar thru an angreal.

It is not however called a circle for nothing. Once she completed the circle by drawing on saidar herself, control defaulted. She described the feeling as being yanked out of her skin.

In Pevara's case, most of it was in her own POV. Compared to Nynaeve, she would have been less willing to let control go, and would feel outraged even more when it did go. She did however, as per procedure place herself on the edge of embracing the Source.

This is where it all begins. One must put himself or herself on the edge of embracing the Source. In both cases this is the commonality. The divergence is in what happens afterwards.

In Nynaeve's case, she initiated it by drawing on saidin thru Rand. Then when she drew on saidar as well, only then did control pass rather abruptly. The text in Winter's Heart points out that Nynaeve wasn't actually holding the Source when she drew on saidin. Rand didn't feel saidar as he did saidin until after Nynaeve complained.

In Pevara's case, she wasn't sure how to draw saidin thru Androl. Either that or Androl didn't know how to put himself on the brink without seizing saidin. Maybe Nynaeve was simply more used to seizing something by force. Kind of like the mirror image of her previous problems in surrendering to saidar.

Whatever happened Pevara practically asked Androl to initiate the link. Androl did so. The same way Aes Sedai initiated the link. By drawing on saidar thru the other person as if thru an angreal. Unlike Nynaeve though, Androl started seizing saidin at the same time. We know because Pevara felt it immediately when she was yanked into the circle. She and Nynaeve even use the same words for the feeling.
Dixon Davis
116. KadesSwordElanor
Grimwanderer @ 113

I too thoroughly enjoyed Pevara & Anrol's stroyline. Is the "underwhelming" victory you refer to their seizure of the seals from Taim. I thought that a pretty big victory. I would also say that there was another victory I deem pretty monumental. I will be glad to expound, but was waiting until we got closer to the chapter to which I am referring. And for what my 2 cents is worth (which isn't much), that chapter is close to the end and it will be okay if we don't get to it for a long time.
Edward Phippen
117. Grimwanderer
KadesSwordElanor @ 116

To be honest, the whole seals being taken by the dark just seemed like a distraction to me. It would have had more impact if it had been discovered by team light a book or two ago (giving them - and us - more time to worry).

I may be wrong (I've only read the book once.... so far ), but I don't remember team light having much time to worry about the seals once the battles started... Just a few lines here and there to remind us that the plot thread was still out there. I'm not saying it wasn't critical to the book... Just that (with everything else going on) it felt like an after thought to me.

Basically what I remember is: battle, battle, death, light side getting creamed, battle, battle, what does Matt have planned?, battle, battle... But it will all be meaningless without the seals!, battle, battle, death, etc. (Just to clarify, I'm not complaining about all the battles in a book about the Last Battle, just saying that the plot about the seals having been taken came up very late and got a bit lost with everything else going on.)

The underwhelming bit that I referred to was specifically the resolution of Alviarin and company. YMMV.... But I really wanted more (from both Alviarin and from Pevara / Androl).
Dixon Davis
118. KadesSwordElanor
I see your point and agree that earlier revelation of Team Bad possessing the seals would have been more impactful. Refresh my memory on what you are referring to via Alviarin & Co. if you don't mind, and I will look it up (I've only read whole book once too, though I have read prologue, CH 1 & 2 about 5 times for reread). Got to head to church and would love to respond later should you choose to except this mission.

I wanted more too, and still do.
Valentin M
119. ValMar
Man-o @ 108

Thanks for the link! I hardly use FB at all and once I made a feeble and unsuccessful attempt to find the group. I'll try to join now.
Edward Phippen
120. Grimwanderer
KadesSwordElanor @ 118

Not to get ahead of the story here (although I obviously am doing so... Anyone still avoiding spoilers should look away now!)...

....but Alviarin shows up late in the book and has command of a small entourage of dreadlords. She arrives just in time to be tricked into leading her crew into chasing someone they believe go be Rand. It turns out to be Androl who tricked them with a mask of mirrors.... Which they find out only after following him into a stedding where they are taken into custody by the ogier.

Alviarin, arguably one of the more successful dark friends, is dispatched in just a few pages. This is (if I remember correctly) the last big accomplishment for Androl and Pevara (not sure if we even see them again after).
121. alreadymadwithFBgroup
Man-0-Manetheran, who's the admin on the FB group?
Alice Arneson
122. Wetlandernw
alreadymad @115 - Nice job! Thank you; excellent summary of how it worked in both cases, and how the "differences" aren't really differences at all, but different angles on the same thing.

Grimwanderer et al @ several... While I can see what you're saying, I personally don't find it a let-down. Androl and Pevara had done a series of amazing they-just-get-better-and-better! effects throughout the book, starting with the double-bonding here, through their adventures in cleansing the Black Tower, multiple battlefield antics, lava gates, snagging the Seals from Taim's belt pouch, etc. They ought to be exhausted and running out of ability to function, but they still manage to take out a group of black channelers, including one who might well be only one step shy of Chosen, using their brains instead of their flagging strength. Finally, exhausted, they manage one last feat - turning Logain to mercy instead of tyranny by persuading him to rescue children from the Trollocs rather than trying to get the sa'angreal out of the crystal. I thought it was a well done arc; not everyone should go out with a bang. IMO.
123. Freelancer
AMW, that would be Samadai. And the group is called WoT Tor.com rereaders.
Dixon Davis
124. KadesSwordElanor
Grimwanderer @ 120 & Wetlandernw @ 122

I maybe overstating this because of how this scene effected/affected(can never get those two staight) me emotionally. And I am also jumping ahead so spoiler alert! This was one of my favorite scenes in the whole series.

pg. 847 "Please," Androl whispered, so soft. "Children, Logain. They're slaughtering the children. . ."
Logain closed his eyes.

It took me a long time to get back my composure after this scene. The simple addition of the "so soft" was pure genius. I would make the argument that Logain, had he succeeded in capturing the scepter, could have been on his way to becoming another variation of Moridin. Logain's natural ability to lead, the pain of what was done to him by the Reds/WT and stilling, torture by his own and the pencil thin margin by which he escaped the turning, were all coming to a head in a lust for power. And let us not forget that Logain had the seals and was actually waffling on what to do with them. In steps Androl, and speaks the exact words that would sway anyone who had any shred of "walks in the light" left in them. Pure awesomeness.
Edward Phippen
125. Grimwanderer

You are correct, not every character needs to go out with a bang. With these two, however, my feeling was that their story needed to go somewhere.

I've started and deleted 9 or 10 paragraphs as I'm not really capturing what I am trying to say. What I'm really talking about comes much later in the book, however, and I'll try to get back to it as we reach that on the re-read.
Alice Arneson
126. Wetlandernw
Grimwanderer - Gee, I've never done that.... Ha. :) (I can't count the number of files, much less paragraphs, that have hit the bin because I couldn't say what I wanted...)

Yeah, the discussion that comes up as we get to the actual scenes we're talking about may help to crystalize the thoughts. I do (think I) understand what you mean - it's just that I don't feel the same way about it. Then again, I make the assumption that their story will go somewhere - we just won't get to see it.

I assume they will be integral to the development of a working relationship between the Black and White Towers. It seems like a natural direction for them to go, with their double bond. Both are already leaders within their Tower, but they're going to want to work together and stay together - and yet, I can't see either of them giving up their own place. So I think they would be immediate leaders in figuring out how to get the men and women working together, exploring not only bonding but double-bonding, for those who are interested. I also wouldn't be surprised to see a fair number of those who are already bonded decide to try the double version - but we'll only actually see it if it's in the Encyclopedia. (Who knows - it may even give a certain future Amyrlin an idea about how to extend her lifespan while she figures out how to disentangle the Oath Rod mess...)

Anyway, I think that's part of why it doesn't bother me - I assume there is more story for them - it's just not part of the Last Battle and the immediate aftermath. And I personally liked the touch of having them be so exhausted they could hardly function, but they kept doing whatever little things they could - like creating just one more gateway to get to someone with enough strength left to fight off the Trollocs and rescue the children.
Deana Whitney
127. Braid_Tug
@ 93. insectoid; I like the button! Like the idea of a fridge magnet too. Mine is covered! I never want a stainless steel fridge, they don't hold fridge magnets.

Like Rand al’Todd, I would be happy to donate for them.

Please put a Brown boarder on mine. This is really going to be fun. I’ve never been to a Con before where I’m looking forward to seeing so many friends I’ve never met.
Roger Powell
128. forkroot
I guess I'm on the clock to get a good avatar eh? I certainly want a button.

I wonder what a forkroot plant looks like? Anybody have suggestions?
Deana Whitney
129. Braid_Tug
@ Forkroot, check your shout box.

Do you know that when you Google “forkroot” images, for some reason, Lord of the Ring Lego pictures and odd Barbie images appear. Very strange.
Don Barkauskas
130. bad_platypus
Freelancer @103:
Little did anyone yet know that you cannot Compel a Warder if they too can channel (or apparently, if they are of the same gender, i.e. Birgitte).
Is there textual evidence for the same-gender part of this? Or is it simply that Elayne has too much respect for Birgitte to try to use the bond to Compel her?
Ron Garrison
131. Man-0-Manetheran
"I wonder what a forkroot plant looks like? Anybody have suggestions?"

William Carter
132. wcarter
It's too bad we can't create a Kickstarter funding project dedicated to kidnapping trasporting Wetlander to Atlanta for Jordancon.

On a side note, the mentions of a re-read group makes me almost wish I still had a Facebook account. Almost.
Alice Arneson
133. Wetlandernw
wcarter @132 - Aww. Thanks. :)
re: facebook - I'm pretty sure the only thing Freelancer uses facebook for is the the reread group and the occasional private messaging... Nothing says you have to use your full name so everyone can find you!
134. Rancho Unicorno
@forkroot 128, for some reason, I always think of a mutant parsnip. Well, I guess not mutant, because I guess forked parnsips occur on a regular basis, but I was imagining something like a tooth with even-sized roots.
135. s'rEDIT
forkroot@128: Whereas I had always pictured mandrake root.
136. alreadymadwithforkroot
I always imagined it was some variant of marijuana.
Thomas Keith
137. insectoid
Braid_Tug @127:
Brown: done!

Fork @128:
I suppose, though an avatar isn't strictly necessary; it just looks better. ;) (Everyone on the list gets a button regardless of whether they have an avatar or not.)
I'm not much of a botanist, so I can't really help you there.

wcarter @132:

Alreadymad @136:

Roger Powell
138. forkroot
Mega-props to Braid_Tug who pointed me at the mandrake image at the 13th depository (hopefully they don't mind me using that image for my avatar.) The depository has quite a bit of information that suggested that RJ modeled forkroot somewhat after our mandrake plant.

So ... here we are into the 15th book of the Reread and I've finally got an avatar!
Ron Garrison
139. Man-0-Manetheran
I always imagined it was some variant of marijuana.

"Dude, I think those guys are darkfriends."
"Nah. Yur just paranoid."
"Yeah, whatever."
Thomas Keith
140. insectoid
Fork @138:
It has been added to your button. :)

Man-0 @139:

Maiane Bakroeva
141. Isilel
Wookster125 @52:
Although I would add in response to Isilel @20 that the idea behind the man leading a one-to-one group with a woman was supposed to be a balance
to the fact that women could link with one another without a man present at all, while men could not.
The balance for men not being able to link is men being stronger, no? I mean you need a circle of 13 to contain/overpower some men, surely this is compensation enough?

IMHO, the fact that one man and one woman can't be fully partners as channelers, since if they combine their powers in a link, only the man's skill, experience and Talents are relevant, while woman can only be a passive OP battery, is something of a very basic problem re: the whole balance theme.

In fact, RJ went overboard with making his male channelers awesome - i.e., they are stronger, they learn much faster, they are incomparably more creative (and not just compared to AS, but to all other female channelers too), they don't actually seem to be weak in Water and Air, like women are in Fire and Earth, the Healing Talent isn't rare among them, they can feel women embracing saidar, etc.
I.e. all the balancing weaknesses and limitations that men were supposed to have were gradually discarded.
And in AMOL they have even changed one of the few links that previously _had_ to be led by a woman, i.e. 2:1 link, so that a man could control them.
And of course we see Androl seizing Pevara and bringing her into the circle, although previously it was supposed to be the other way round.

Alreadymadwithlinking @115:
The female cannot yield control voluntarily. It can't be voluntary when she never has a choice.
The way it was described with Nynaeve at the Cleansing, she did have a choice. She just couldn't weave the OP. But she certainly had the choice to dissolve the circle, for instance, instead of passing the control to Rand. It is only after the control was passed that she didn't have a choice and passing of it was not automatic, but deliberate.

Rand al'Todd @46:
Come to think of it, Androl's entire history indicates that he just might be ta'veren.
Please, no! I'd like to think that even in the WoT world people can be awesome due to their own abilities and drive, rather than being wholly dependant on the hand-outs of the Pattern for everything. Let people be heroic on their own merits.

Wetlandernw @50:
Things change. In all the bonding back and forth, why is it so hard to believe that someone could figure out how to do the bond without the kiss?
But why establish that some newly-discovered thing has to be done a certain way and then do it differently, without any explanation? And Pevara learned the Warder bond from another senior AS, so why should it be some hitherto unknown variation that doesn't require touching? It has been established that once you learned a weave a certain way, it is very difficult and often impossible to do it in a different way, even if gesture is the only difference.

Agree 110% with your essay on the Reds in @51, though.

however, there's no evidence that Healing leaves any kind of web, or any aftereffect except the healed body
There is a subtle effect in that a healer can sense identity and position of the healed over the short distances ever after, IIRC. So, something does seem to stay.

Finally, re: Androl and Pevara, I too really like them, despite the iffiness of their mutual bonding.
And I like them, in part, because they are believably and entertainingly deconstructing a lot of gender-based WoT BS that we know and love, up to and including the problem of unbalanced one-on-one link .

Alas, according, to one of Sanderson's interviews, RJ intended the White and Black Towers to remain forever separate, which makes zero sense to me, but YMMV.

Jordan Hibbits
142. rhandric
@141 Re: continued separation of White and Black Towers

I see it as while the two have some similarities (ie, 2 Towers made of channelers), the fact that the White Tower has traditionally hunted the very men who comprise the Black Tower, and the Black Tower was built to train men to be weapons, means they don't have a place to merge. Eventually, in another Age, there will be a single organization of men and women channelers, and in the 4th age they will likely work together, but for the 4th age they won't be operating under the same management. It's like Sealing the Bore -- the rubble must be cleared away, and as long as the White and Black Towers exist, that can't happen.
143. AndrewB
Rhandric @142. Good Analogy.

"Wish I didn't know know what I didn't know then." Bob Seger, Against the Wind
144. alreadymadwithcircles
Isilel @141
Nynaeve wasn't holding saidar when she started drawing saidin thru Rand. Read the text. Rand didn't feel saidar thru the link until after she complained about being yanked out of her skin. She was slightly more methodical about it than Androl. But the point is, once she also started drawing saidar, thereby completing the circle, there wasn't any way she could have retained control. It just passed automatically to Rand. Don't blame Rand, he didn't take control summarily. He was as surprised as she was.

In Androl and Pevara's case, Pevara felt the chaos that was saidin almost immediately after she was drawn into the circle. A sure sign that
Androl drew both saidin and saidar simultaneously. You could say she was forced into it, but the fact is, she's only complaining because as a Red, she doesn't like being led around by a man. For some reason she wasn't able to do it the same way Nynaeve did. She said Androl had to lead. She was in that reaching but not yet holding saidar state and was waiting for him to ask permission. And Androl probably fumbled it and forgot to ask in his eagerness. He also did in one step what Nynaeve did in two. And there's nothing wrong with that. This is uncharted territory for current day Aes Sedai. People will invariably end up using different paths toward the same end.
Maiane Bakroeva
145. Isilel
Rhandric @142:
I see it as while the two have some similarities (ie, 2 Towers made of channelers), the fact that the White Tower has traditionally hunted the very men who comprise the Black Tower, and the Black Tower was built to train men to be weapons, means they don't have a place to merge.
Well, but didn't persecuted minorities IRL join the Institutions that used to persecute them upon emancipation? And gradually worked at changing them for the better?
And what does "trained as weapons" for a few months or even a year mean? Isn't it what happened to all the soldiers and it didn't make them unfit for returning to civilian life afterwards? There is no room in the Dragon Peace for Asha'man as a military force anyway.

What is more, RJ started all the many hook-ups between the 2 groups and implied that Aes Sedai not having kids is wrong and that's one of the things that is going to change in the Fourth age.
The natural result would be both male and female channelers being members of the same family, etc. , which would make separate Towers somewhat impractical.

Also, imagine all the headache re: policing of channeling misbehaviour when you have 2 different jurisdictions which are likely to be partial to their own people.

Generally, I found the whole speedy acceptance of Asha'man and quick and neat resolution of residual madness to be somewhat cheap and unsatisfying too. Even if it did allow Nyn to be awesome. IMHO, all that should have been among the issues that remained open.

Alreadymad @ 144:

It has been established in the books previously that woman has to form the link, bring a man into it. Being in receptive state should not be enough, Pevara should have been the one intiating it. As this scene is written, Androl actively builds the link and brings Pevara into it, which is the opposite of what should be happening. And there was no reason to change it - Pevara still could have panicked subsequently.

BTW, isn't it interesting that Moiraine wasn't ever afraid of Rand _or_ of Asmodean? Despite lacking Cadsuane's protection. Quite a contrast to nearly every other AS in the series, IIRC. Don't really remember Verin's reaction..., but of course she was a special case.
146. alreadymadwithlinking
Isilel @145
Or it could simply be that the Tower no longer really knows how to form the link. Heck, maybe in the AoL they had a protocol about having the women initiate the link and bring men in to prevent abuse and this got twisted down the line. One more instance of the latter generations getting the truth twisted. The fact is, that time and again we get instances where the Tower's accepted truth gets overturn by actual practice.

In Moiraine's case, Asmodean was already partially shielded when she came upon her. She saw Asmodean as a tool of prophecy, chained to Rand as he was.

On separate Towers:
There has to be a shared purpose between the Towers if they are to merge. Unfortunately, at the moment there isn't a lot of shared experience or goals between the two. Asha'man at this point don't have a lot of commonality with most of the White Tower. At most they have things in common with the Greens and the Reds, which, despite being the largest Ajahs, are still just two out of six.

They have to mature first as an organization. Find their way before they can be subsumed under a united Tower.
147. Freelancer
Isilel @145
And what does "trained as weapons" for a few months or even a year mean? Isn't it what happened to all the soldiers and it didn't make them unfit for returning to civilian life afterwards?
No. However difficult it is to believe, I beg you to accept the word of a warrior on this. There is a VAST difference between being trained for warfighting, and being trained "as a weapon". No semantic ring-around-the-rosy, either. Perhaps in some places in the world people are de-humanized so, turned into walking bombs or such, but no place where people are meant to be free.

With the Black Tower, Rand's directive was to teach them to be weapons, because he needed the destructive potential of their channeling available as soon as possible. But do not conclude that he meant their humanity to be stripped from them. Wives, children, pets? And, apart from those who are already darkfriends, the men we meet in black coats are utterly human. Karldin, Narishma, Fedwin, Hopwil, Grady, Fager, Damer. In fact, of those who serve the Light, Logain is the worst of them.

They have not become varelse, they remain raman.
Valentin M
148. ValMar
Isilel @ 145

It's a bit unfair to the other AS to compare them to Moiraine. She is far too awesome.

Freelancer @ 147; Isilel @ 145; Alreadymad...

I also think that being "trained as weapons" hasn't rendered the Asha'man unable to function in normal society.
Firstly, as Free says, we know, we've seen them as decent guys.
Secondly, what does "trained as weapons" means for the Asha'man? I'm pretty sure it's vastly different from training in RL spec forces and the like. Mostly it's the weaves they learn and practice and the intencity and risk involved what makes it different from the WT. Daily live seems relatively domestic, wives & kids... following from this is:
Thirdly, we are talking about the Asha'man integrating with the WT. If anything, the guys are not mad enough for the lasses! The WT makes the Roman Curia look down to earth.
Roger Powell
149. forkroot
In fact, RJ went overboard with making his male channelers awesome - i.e., they are stronger, they learn much faster,
I don't think we can conclude that they learn any faster in general. Remember that the White Tower would bend over backward to avoid Novices burning out - and so brought them along very slowly. Their silly restrictions on finding female channelers misled them into thinking that they were rarer than they really were - all of which contributed to a "don't lose a single woman" mentality.

When the BT was founded time was of the essence, and channeling men lived under the threat of eventual madness. The Black Tower accepted high rates of burnout and death as the price for pushing the men to learn as fast as possible.

Also consider the case of Egwene who was essentially "forced" by the Seanchan. Ironically, the a'dam might have protected her since it uses the same principles as a circle, and hence might well buffer like a circle. Regardless, Egwene was a very faster learner - comparable to the men.
151. JimF
@51. Wetlandernw

"...It’s too bad they didn’t have a whole collection of paralis-nets for use by the Red Ajah from day one; the ability to approach a male channeler singly, without fear, and without the need to slap a shield on him instantly, would go a long way toward your ability to treat him like a human being, and would reduce the antagonism by several orders of magnitude...."

Yeah it's so much nicer to be smothered with a pillow in your sleep than to be blasted to bits by a coven of "witches". ;) Cannot really disagree with you, as the necessary outcome is the same in either case. However, Thom Merrilin's bitterness at all Aes Sedai over the way the Reds treated Owyn says that the Reds basically screwed the pooch in their approach.
Alice Arneson
152. Wetlandernw
JimF @151 - If you simply look at the difference between the men Cadsuane brought in and the men the Red Ajah brought in, I'd have to say the approach makes a lot of difference. The Red Ajah was, presumably, organized in part as a reaction to the Breaking; at the time the Ajahs were formed, anyway, the world was still very much recovering from it. There had to be a certain amount of fear and resulting antagonism, right? By the time you find out that a man can channel, you don't know how far along in the madness he is, and you don't want to risk your life going in and talking to him without shielding him. That attitude would, given human nature, build into... well, the Red Ajah we saw in the WoT.

Keep in mind that the "cure" is not the fault of the Aes Sedai; it's the fault of the Taint/DO. The men can't help the fact that they're going mad and dying; the AS can't really help it either, other than by cutting off their access to the thing that's causing the madness and death. I'm sure many of the men felt like the cure was worse than the disease, but they were dangerous - to themselves, of course, but to everyone around them as well. Death was inevitable once a man started channeling, but when and how were still up in the air.

And as you say, the Reds screwed the pooch in their approach. By the time they were done with him, a man was either dead, or he wished he was. And it was not necessary; just ask "Emarin" about it.
153. JimF
@152. Wetlandernw: I cannot disagree that the solution was either death (rare apparently as a direct action of the Reds) or gentling. However, if one caught the guy, then 'splained to him and his girl and his dog what and why it was going to happen, then did it, there is the smallest chance that one or two might have actually survived it with the help of whatever support group that might have been enlisted (after all, some women survived gentling, especially those that had some support). Instead the Reds seemed to have basically acted like the NKVD - and when a large percentage of your members actually hate men it's not hard to see why. When they finished their grim little exercise, they left a man who was a thorough outcast in his homeland.

If they ever made a mistake (and killed or damaged a non-channelling man, for example), would there have been any contriteness, any action against them, any penances in the Tower? The White Tower was performing a necessary service, but in a way that was cruel, inhumane and apparently, unpoliced by the Amyrlin.
Alice Arneson
154. Wetlandernw
Jim, I think a severe lack of compassion was their trademark and the reason for their generally horrible treatment of the men. (An attempt to gentle a non-channeler wouldn't actually hurt him, but their other treatment in the process just might.)

I can understand it, to some extent; in the first generation, the resentment against Lews Therin and the 100 Companions for starting all this, plus the truly terrible effects of the Breaking would naturally result in fear, anger and fierce determination to stop all of it by any means necessary. But there's a lot of blame to go around: Lews Therin Telamon and Latra Posae Decume, between the two of them, managed to completely polarize the men and women, who should have been working together. Women who had once been friends of these men should have been able to show compassion toward them. (And we know that some of them did manage to work together again, for a time.)

Something got lost. The simple fact of the taint meant that every man who could channel really, really needed to be severed at some point, before they did irreparable damage; that's no one's fault. Instead of developing a culture of compassion and aid, though, the Red Ajah developed a culture of antagonism and enforcement. Once can't help but wonder if, in the early days, some beloved women were killed or stilled by the men they tried to aid, and the backlash was part of the negative culture development. Nothing like anger and fear to create enmity, is there?

In any case, that's the root of my original comment: if the women had been able to approach a man without fear of being killed or stilled when he lashed out - i.e., in possession of a paralis-net - there would have been a higher chance of the culture developing in the direction of compassion rather than antagonism.

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