May 23 2013 1:00pm

Rothfuss Reread: Speculative Summary 20: Watching his Master

Rothfuss Re-read Speculative Summary 20: Watching his Master

My obsessively detailed reread of Patrick Rothfuss’s Kingkiller Chronicles is over, but we want to keep on talking about the books. I’m going to post the occasional speculative summary of cool things posted since last time. Spoilers for all of The Wise Man’s Fear and The Name of the Wind—these discussions assume you’ve read all of both books, and frankly they won’t make the slightest bit of sense if you haven’t. But we welcome new people who have read the books and want to geek out about them. This post is full of spoilers, please don’t venture beyond the cut unless you want them.

Abbreviations: NW = The Name of the Wind. WMF = The Wise Man’s Fear. D3 = Day Three, the forthcoming final volume. K = Kvothe or Kote when I can’t figure out what to call him and I’m feeling Kafkaesque. MT: Myr Tariniel. D = Denna, 4C = Four Corners, CTH—that thing I can’t spell! IID3Y = Is it Day Three Yet?

Useful links: The Sleeping Under the Wagon post. The re-read index. The map. The timeline. Imaginary Linguistics.

DarlinKaty has noticed something interesting that I don’t think we have ever discussed.

Kvothe is referred to as Bast’s “master” several times. I suppose I could go back through the first 5 chapters and count, but that seems tedious. But Chapter 3 ends with:

“there was no one around to notice the difference. No one except Bast, who watched his master, and worried, and waited.”

In a Rothfuss book, ending the chapter with such powerful words should signal you to pay attention. Looking back, at first I thought it was Bast waiting for the hired guys, for Chronicler to show up, for something that he’d set in motion to happen. Seems a reasonable enough explanation for the *LOOK HERE!* wording.

But when compared to the end of Chapter 5, Notes, it seems more significant.

“Then Bast drew a chair alongside the bed and sat, watching his master, listening to him breathe.” The Bast sings the alsmot lullaby then we have this: “Bast’s voice faded until at last he sat motionless, watching the rise and fall of his master’s silent breathing through the long hours of morning’s early dark.”

Hmmm, two of the beginning chapters both end with Kvothe being referred to as Bast’s master? And Kvothe hasn’t shown any desire for power or mastery over another soul in either the frame or his narrative in any other circumstance that I can recall.

So then we’re left with (because we need more) more questions. WHy is Kvothe Bast’s master? Does he actually control him, as a kind of minion? Is Bast an equivalent to a familiar? Does this support the K is an Amyr/Chandrian character?

What does it mean that Kvothe is Bast’s master? I’d just seen it as “master/student,” there are masters at the University after all. But is it more significant?

I’m sorry I haven’t had time to get on writing about women in the books—I have a post on women in the University that’s been sitting half-finished as I’ve finished a novel and started another. I don’t think I’m going to have time to do it justice soon. But the last summary thread is getting very long and kind of old, and I think we could do with a new one, so here you go.

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

Steven Halter
1. stevenhalter
New thread! Nice. For another new thing, since the forums were closed a while back I have created a blog and a wiki for Imaginary Linguistics. The wiki is at:

Right now it contains all of the content from the original forum pages organized in a real wiki. If anyone wishes to add things there, just drop me a note and I will add you as a user.
The blog is at:
If anyone feels a need to add something there, just drop me a note and I can add it or make you a user with author privileges. Any suggestions are welcome.
I wanted to get these set up in advance of D3 (whenever that is) so we can merrily add new words.
Rob Munnelly
2. RobMRobM
SH - very cool.

Jo - one thing I wanted to pass along. A few months ago I strongly recommended Among Others to one of the librarians at our excellent public library. Last weekend, she saw me and thanked me for the recommendation, saying that she loved it. She's now seeking out your other books.
Dustin Freshly
3. Fresh0130
Interesting, I never really gave much thought about Bast and K's relationship outside of the whole Teacher Student/possible father son relationship. I just assumed that Bast was using it as an honorific like Luke and Yoda's relationship.

Interesting theory though that Bast is somehow bound to K as a familiar of sorts, we saw Chronicaller bind him, although not very successfully, with iron. We know Chronicaller is a weak namer, especially with what we've been given, although much of it is speculation by us, the readers, at this point, about K's prowess in his prime as a Namer. So a somehow permantent binding being achieved by K upon Bast at some point in his journies is certainly not out of the realm of possibilities.

Hrrmm... Another theory that just came to me. Is it out of the realm of possibilities that K did return to Felurian as he promised and again found a way of escaping her clutches, yet this time instead of giving him a Shaed to protect him, she sees the human world going to hell in a hand basket, which apparently it will at some point in D3, so she binds one of her underlings to him directly as a protector/subserviant? Bast's title certainly infers a nearness to Felurian's realm. It would explain Bast's over protectiveness of K and his despair at seeing the man he's been bound to protect not give a flying fig if someone comes knocking to cut his throat or if he just die in his sleep, K honestly could care less when the books begin.

Over the course of both books Bast has displayed a "Help me help you" attitude towards K, even going out of his way to try and provoke him into letting a portion of his old self out, mentally and physically. If you were bound to someone and ordered to protect them and they did nothing to help or change the situation, I could totally see Bast resorting to some fairly extreme actions in order to address said situation, which he has. This is especially true if he was bound to K by Felurian, I doubt many Faen creatures would like to have her ire directed at them.

Anywhoo, just a thought or two.
Karen L
4. changisme
I wonder about the whole Master/student dynamic too! I feel there must have been some kind of collision between the two, like they made some kind of bet or met in some kind of battle of the minds. As far as I can tell, Bast is very powerful.
5. megablargh
This isn't so much a question about Bast/Kvothe, but about sympathy.

I thought I knew how sympathy worked, but during the 2nd book, where they fought the encampment of bandits, I don't think I do anymore. How on earth did Kvothe kill the bandits just by stabbing the dead corpse? How exactly did he link the bandits to each other? Is Rothfuss saying that just because they're both human, that's enough to link them? What's to stop every assassin from carrying around a corpse, linking it to their target, and just stabbing it multiple times? Ambrose could've just done this.
John Graham
6. JohnPoint
megablargh @5: Kvothe did exactly what Ambrose tried, except that his simulacrum was somewhat different than a wax or clay one (i.e., it was actually flesh and blood, but he didn't have hair or blood from the other bandits). however, they're all part of the same bandit camp, wearing similar clothing, etc. Remember, also, that Kvothe has an exceptionally strong Alar, which is what allows him to link a bit of straw to a candle wick, and beat another student in a duel.

I'd assume that most assassins aren't nearly as good at sympathy (...) as Kvothe. Also, there's the whole malefeasance issue. Ambrose did effectively that, but it was awfully risky. His simulacrum of Kvothe was probably a better link, anyway, since it included Kvothe's blood.
7. Tarcanus
I forget exactly what the 'bad' part of the Faen realm was called - the Mael?

I seem to recall that Bast comes from that part. It was surprising when I read it because Bast doesn't seem bad - just has a different morality scale than humans.

I think that this discounts Bast being tied in any way to Felurian and points to Kvothe having to have another interaction with Fae before the end of Day 3.
8. Tarcanus
Pardon the double post, but I just found where I remember the Mael from.

Bast's title is: Bastas, Son of Remmen, Prince of Twilight and the Telwyth Mael

So Bast is definitely from the dark side of the Faen street.
thistle pong
9. thistlepong

Yah, nobody seems to wanna talk about that. Even Kote. It's pretty weird.

Congratulations on getting so much writing done, Jo!
10. megablargh
JohnPoint @6: That's what confused me, he didn't have any blood or hair of the other bandits. I don't think linking straw to a candle wick is a good comparison to killing 7(?) bandits without any of their actual blood or hair, if your example is to be used as any rule of measurement of just how strong Kvothe's Alar is.

I don't think assassins would need extremely strong Alar to do their job, especially if it's just one person, and not 7 people in a row, under unfavorable conditions(i.e, camping for a month). I would think anyone at Re'lar level could possess 1/7th the Alar of Kvothe's and make a decent assassin. Also how would anyone ever catch you?
I think I just ignored that the fight ever happened due to disbelief and moved on. Thanks though.
John Graham
11. JohnPoint
Tarcannus @7/8 Re the Mael, it's not quite as simple as that. After the skin dancer attacks, Kvothe and Bast have the following conversation:
Bast shook his head. "It seemed like one of the Mahael-uret, Reshi. A skin dancer." He frowned as he said it, sounding anything but certain.

Kvothe raised an eyebrow. "It isn't one of your kind?"

Bast's normally affiable expression sharpened into a glare. "It was not 'my kind'," he said indignantly. "The Mael doesn't even share a border with us. It's as far away as anywhere can be in the Fae."
So it's not entirely certain that the Telwyth Mael is the same as the skin dancer's Mael.... (it could be like New South Wales which is nowhere near Wales...)
12. lyraadriana
Just read this entire re-read over the last several days. You guys are amazing. So much I never thought about or even noticed over the half dozen times I've read D1 and D2.
Matthew Abel
13. MatthewAbel

I think the link would be fairly strong - similar to the link displayed between two coins early on. The alar must be strong enough for the sympathist's mind to truly "believe" they are one and the same. With a life size simulcrum made of flesh and bone, and dealing with a bunch of interchangable, faceless bandits, I think it's fair to assume you can have a strong link and a strong belief they are the same. I also think it's easier since he's stabbing, not trying to pick up and move them all.

Of course, the rule of cool probably helps a little bit.

I've got no theories on Bast. I don't trust him. I feel like he's trying to awaken Kvothe for more than just teaching.
D. Pack
14. Wringleader
As K and Bast have, to some extent, a teacher-student relationship, I've accepted the term master as a student merely showing his respect.

I believe, though, that K has a strong connection to the Fae and that it is in Bast's interest (and the Fae) to have a strong K. Maybe K is the Fae's protector?
thistle pong
15. thistlepong
So it's not entirely certain that the Telwyth Mael is the same as the skin dancer's Mael.... (it could be like New South Wales which is nowhere near Wales...)
It just feels weird to shrug it off so casually, though. Folks will spend post after post commenting on the similarity between rhinna, rhinta, rhinata, and rhintae or Edema and Ademre. This is the same word. I mean, at least Kvothe raised an eyebrow. And we know Bast is up to shenanigans.

Chronicler's at the Waystone as a result of his rumors. We get a 100% guarantee that he arranged for the soldiers to attack in WMF. Heck, the book opens and closes on it. We should probably consider the possibility that he had something to do with the shambleman.

Looking at the scene again, Bast's desperately trying to get Reshi to do something and begging everyone else to stay back. But he does nothing until it's ready to kill Devan. And holds off again until it goes for Kote, who's clearly willing to let the action play out.

There are similarities, of course, that may or may not be common to all Faen. They're both demonstrably painfully distraught by iron. The both move with incredible speed. Bast recognizes the language and the whatsitsname uses words we only hear elsewhere from Felurian.

And the laugh:
It was no human sound.
The Mahael-uret sounds like birdlike, or like a hawk cry.
It was no human laugh.
And Bast's owl like shrieking fades away, swallowed by the silence of the epilogue.

Can we at least call it a maybe?
16. Fester
I thought the transference from the corpse to the bandits would be about the same as the perfectly detailed statue of Hemme K describes to the sympathy class in D1. THat would give about 10%, which seems pretty reasonable with how hard K was working at cutting the tendons and how cold he got.
Nisheeth Pandey
17. Nisheeth
re:Kvote killing Bandits and Assassin's using Sympathy:
I think that he was able to do it since a human body does have similar chemical composition, it would work as a passable link to the other bandits. Anoter advantage would be how it was similar in shape to oter humans (just as the wax puppet is shaped to be similar to a human)
As for assassin's not using sympathy, I simply attributed it to there being no sympathatists (is that the word?) who have decided to go for the work of Assassin's. Most people from the University get more reputable, and legal, jobs.
John Graham
18. JohnPoint
Thistle @15: Oh, I agree that it's suspicious and I've wondered about it a lot. There definitely are similarities, and Bast is up to more than we know. I just don't think that we can automatically say that Bast is from the "bad part" of the Fae realm -- we have the same word, yes, but I don't think that we know enough about Faen geography or language to know for certain what the connection is between "the Mael" and "the Telwyth Mael".

But at the same time, if Bast is lying about this, it seems like a very transparent lie -- Kvothe obviously knows (at least more than we do) about Faen geography, and knows that Bast has a relationship to the Telwyth Mael. Additionally, Bast knows that Chronicler knows that as well, so denying the relationship between the Mael and Telwyth Mael seems, well, transparent.

Though I do have a theory, but haven't fully developed it yet:

What we know about Faen geography comes from WMF ch 101, where we see:
I also learned that there aren't directions of the usual sort in the Fae. Your trifoil compass is useless as a tin codpiece there. North does not exist. And when the sky is endless twilight, you cannot watch the sun rise in the east.

But if you look closely at the sky, one piece of the horizon will be a shade brighter, in the opposite direction a shade darker.If you walk toward the brighter horizon, eventually it will become daytime. The other way leads to darker night. If you keep walking in one direction long enough, you will eventually see a whole "day" pass and end up in the same place you began. That's the theory, at any rate.

Felurian described those two points of the Fae compass as Day and Night. The other two points she referred to at different times as Dark and Light, Summer and Winter, or Forward and Backward. Once she even referred to them as Grimward and Grinning, but something about the way she said it made me suspect it was a joke.
So, the Fae appears to be a sphere with two axes: Day/Night and Dark/Light. In order to locate part of the realm, you would need to give a position -- coordinates, if you will -- for both axes. Essentially, latitude and longitude. I think that's exactly what we see when Bast is introduced: "Bastas, Son of Remmen, Prince of Twilight and the Telwyth Mael". Read that instead as "Prince of 40-50 degrees N, 85-95 degrees W" and it makes sense in our world.

"Twilight" obviously refers to the positioning on the Day/Night axis, and I think that "Telwyth Mael" refers to the position on the Dark/Light axis (which we can perhaps also refer to as "Order/Chaos" or "Good/Evil" as much as the Fae have concepts of good and evil).

My feeling is that the "Telwyth Mael" is not the same place as "the Mael". Let's call the "bad part" of the Fae "Chaos". Then, I think that the "Telwyth" part is a modifer of Mael -- perhaps it means "Chaotic Neutral" or "Chaotic Good". Just as the other coordinate, Twilight, is neither Day nor Night.

That seems to make the most sense to me, since we don't know much more. And we do know that the Tain Mael is one faction in the faen courts, but that doesn't tell us much either.

(Oh, and on the subject of laughs, we also have Felurian's which "...was wild as a fox's cry, clear and sharp as morning birdsong. It was no human sound.")

@16&17 re the bandits -- ::agree::

EDIT to add: we also have Felurian named as "Lady of Twilight, Lady of First Quiet." Which could definitely be taken as a coordinate system as well. Twilight is the same, and "First Quiet" could well be a location on the other axis.
19. The Frog
15. thistlepong

"Chronicler's at the Waystone as a result of his rumors. We get a 100% guarantee that he arranged for the soldiers to attack in WMF. Heck, the book opens and closes on it. We should probably consider the possibility that he had something to do with the shambleman."

If we consider the possibility Bast had something to do with the Shambleman, could we then even consider the possibility he had something to do with the Skrael being so far already...?
thistle pong
20. thistlepong
The Frog@19
If we consider the possibility Bast had something to do with the Shambleman, could we then even consider the possibility he had something to do with the Skrael being so far already...?
Sure? But... I got nuthin'. Can we support it? I could do some handwavey voodoo andclaim that about halfway through D3 we'll find out wtf-scrael. And in the last, like, four chapters we'll learn why they showed up in Newarre. Until then they'll haunt us.


Well, that's certainly somthing to think about. Maybe Tain and Telwyth are the "poles" of the Mael equator/meridian? And Day and Night are the "poles" of the Twilight(/Dawn?) equator/meridian? You could finagle something close to "as far away as anywhere can be" out of that.

DoIL folks: can you torture any meaning out of Telwyth and Tain?
And, um, Department of Imaginary Topography folks: what changes if the surface of Faen is inside the sphere or whatsitsshape?
Alice Arneson
21. Wetlandernw
That’s a very interesting discussion, Jo. I had skimmed over the “master” references, simply taking it to fit the definition of a teacher – or more specifically, “A worker or artisan qualified to teach apprentices.” Obviously that’s reinforced by the number of times the apparent teaching relationship comes up, when Kote tells Bast to go read Celum Tinture, etc. Or Bast saying, “I couldn’t leave, Reshi. Who else would teach me?” (Chapter One, NW) So there’s clearly some kind of teacher/student relationship going on, but it begs the question of why a 25-year-old (give or take a few) human would be an appropriate teacher for a 150-year-old Fae.

It’s made pretty clear that Bast feels pretty strongly about having Kvothe as his teacher, and that Kvothe knows how important it is to Bast. It leaves us with the questions of why it’s so important. What can only Kvothe teach him that matters so much? Or is it Kvothe himself that is important, and the “what” is immaterial? The idea that “master” could also refer to the definition of one holding authority, control, or ownership puts a very interesting twist on it.

There’s also a slight implication (mostly in terms of Kvothe’s occasional threats to boot him out, or suggestions that he could leave) that perhaps Kvothe is only aware of the first definition, while Bast is actually there because of the second. Certainly the identification of “his master” only appears from Bast’s perspective (not Kvothe’s) but that might not prove a lot. Kvothe may not be all that likely to think of himself as “Bast’s master” in so many words, I suppose.
John Graham
22. JohnPoint
Thistlepong @20
Maybe Tain and Telwyth are the "poles" of the Mael equator/meridian? And Day and Night are the "poles" of the Twilight(/Dawn?) equator/meridian?

And, um, Department of Imaginary Topography folks: what changes if the surface of Faen is inside the sphere or whatsitsshape?
Yeah, that's a good thought -- I was assuming that Day and Night were the poles of the one axis, but hadn't thought about Tain and Telwyth as the poles of the other (I was assuming something more like Good/Evil, Order/Chaos, or as Felurian tells us, Light/Dark, Summer/Winter, or Forward/Backward. Granted, any of these could be what Tain/Telwyth mean...)

I can't think of any fundamental difference if the realm is located on the inside of a sphere, not on the outside. It would complicate the idea of stars, moon, and a sun (since on the outside of a sphere you can get day, night, and a gradient of darkness as the surface curves away from the source of light), but that could well be solved with magic.
Steven Halter
23. stevenhalter
I kind of like the idea of a stationary moebius strip with a fixed point of illumination. This could give you a continuous surface with areas of light, twilight and darkness--the ratios depending on where the light source was located.
A non-rotating sphere (or tidally locked) would also work.
The interior of a sphere would be difficult to light such that there were shaded portions unless the illumination isn't from one point or is interfered with in some fashion.
A Tel is a mound or hill, especially one that is burying a city. This fits fairly well with various "fairy" references. Wyth is welsh for 8 so Telwyth could be something like the Eight mounds or Eight Faen cities.
thistle pong
24. thistlepong
Wyth is welsh for 8 so Telwyth could be something like the Eight mounds or Eight Faen cities.
Like seven cities and one city?
Steven Halter
25. stevenhalter
thistlepong@24:Why, yes, that would fit very well. That lends a lot of weight to that translation.
Jeremy Raiz
26. Jezdynamite
I wonder if a third Mael is uret (from Mahael-uret below).

Quote: Bast shook his head. "It seemed like one of the Mahael-uret, Reshi. A skin dancer." He frowned as he said it, sounding anything but certain.

Or perhaps Mahael (Mael?) translates as either "skin(s) or "dancer(s)".
27. Dessert
@sympathy assassins
Take note that Brandeur chastises Hemme for not wearing his gram.
John Graham
28. JohnPoint
Re Faen geography -- the external surface of a sphere makes the most sense to me. A mobius strip would be interesting, but I have a hard time figuring out how the second dimension (whatever we're calling it) would work. Though, ttytt, Kvothe only indicated that you will eventually return to the starting point if you walk in the Day/Night direction, not necessarily the other.

Eight cities, eh? That's convenient...!

BTW, I expect that most people have found this already, but there is a pretty cool kickstarter going on right now for NOTW playing cards. Pat is heavily involved, and there will likely be a lot to glean from the design of the individual cards.
29. DoYouHas
I'll start this with an apology since this is my first time posting and I will probably be repeating theories due to not having read all of the comment sections. So here goes the brain dump.

Cthaeh -
I've come to think that there are mainly two factors that limit the Cthaeh's ability to be damaging.

The first is the people it speaks to themselves. There are only so many things that one person can influence. Like the plague ship analogy, eventually the area is quarantined, the plague dies down. There are multiple things that probably work against the Cthaeh's influence, like the Sithe and the Lethani, maybe the tinkers and Amyr. My point is that if the Cthaeh's influence was something that could not be defended against and continued unchecked then the world in the narrative would be much worse than the relative peace that is actually there.

The second limiting factor is that because the Cthaeh can only cause a limited amount of damage through one person, it must use that person in order to arrange an encounter with someone down the road. For example, it has been suggested that the gap in the Sithe's protection of the tree was caused by them being drawn off to kill Cinder. Cinder is directly influenced by Haliax who is directly influenced by the Cthaeh. And while I don't know if that is the actual reason why there was a gap in the security, I do think that the gap was present because the Cthaeh not only tries to choose the most malevolent path for people it encounters but also has to balance that with a path that leads another influential person to it sometime in the future.

(On a side note I think that it is interesting that the Cthaeh has no qualms directing Kvothe to the Adem even though they teach the Lethani, something that I think works against the Cthaeh's influence.)
On to what the Cthaeh says. The Cthae predicts Kvothe meeting up with Cinder in D3. "I'd say it was a twice-in-a-lifetime-opportunity meeting up with him again." The "again" discounts the orginal encounter when Kvothe was a child. So we can be pretty confident that Kvothe meets up with Cinder just one more time.

I think that the 'wit' in "Stick by the Maer and he will lead you to their door" is all about the door. Why it is the Amyr's door I do not know. Maybe they built it, or maybe they guard it. Either way, I'm pretty confident it is the Lackless door and a counterpart to or at least similar to the Four Plate door. I think this because 'the enemy' is shut beyond the doors of stone. There are multiple doors. This could be waystones, but I don't like that explanation because character's reactions to waystones are all across the spectrum, positive and negative. If "The Enemy" was shut behind the waystones, I would expect more negative and ominous descriptions and reactions of/to them to have survived. This leaves me with the Four Plate door, which absolutely is ominous, and the Lackless door, which makes it doors instead of door and has a similar air of mystery about it.
I saw it suggested (I do not remember who) that the Cthaeh is Selitos. I do not think this can be possible. (Again, apologies if this has been dealt with). Iax speaks to the Cthaeh before he steals the moon, triggering the creation war. I don't think Selitos would have intentionally given Iax advice that would lead to the CW where Selitos is on the opposite side from Iax. Also, in Skarpi's story Selitos sees how Lanre sought knowledge where knowledge is better left alone. This is a clear reference to the Cthaeh and is completely seperate from Selitos. Moving on... this is going to be long.
Dagon -

Three things tip me towards Dagon being significantly more than he appears. The first is his name, which is quite striking, not something I would expect of a minor character. Second is his eyes. I've begun to notice that it is mainly important people who get their eyes described in the KKC: Kvothe, Bast, Denna, Alveron, Dagon, Felurian, Elodin, Etc. When Kvothe goes out of his way to describe the way someone's eyes strike him, I immediately think there is depth in that character. Lastly, the extreme reaction Kvothe has to Dagon's gaze (it sends him into the feral sleeping-mind part of himself from Tarbean).

I am pretty confident that Dagon is an Amyr. Nowhere else in the books do we get such a clear cut example of someone who follows ends-justify-means. But before I go into the nitty-gritty, I want to look at the situation with the Maer and the bandits in general. We know that the Chandrian (or at least Cinder) are invested in waylaying the taxes that specifically go to the Maer. This does only two things; it increases tension between the Maer and the king, and it increases tension between the Maer and the common people. So for whatever reason, the Chandrian want to destabalize the Maer or make strife between him and the king. From what we know about the Amyr they stand opposed to the Chandrian, working against and attempting to prevent the negative things that the Chandrian do. It makes sense to me that there would be at least one Amyr near the Maer (this is also hinted at by the Cthaeh) in order to work against the Chandrian's plot.

The connection between Dagon and Cinder is largely made because Dagon has dark eyes and Kvothe supresses a shiver and Stapes says he is like a cold water down the back of his neck. Which fits the 'chill and dark of eye' part of Cinder's signs. However, I do think there is a description of the Amyr which fits Dagon much better from earlier in WMF, Nina's from the painting on the pot.

"They were all awful to ook at. But he was the worst. I can't get faces right, but his was terrible grim. He looked so angry. He looked like he was ready to burn down the whole world."

The only thing that doesn't fit neatly from that example straight to Dagon is the anger. Dagon is described as dispassionate and emotionless. It might be that the anger is there because the Amyr on the pot is in the presence of the Chandrian and is rebuking them. Everything else fits: The ends-justfiy-means attitude, the grimness, the terrible/frightening presence. And most of all whenever Dagon's methodology is mentioned, there is burning. He would find the bandits, but he would raze villages and burn down a thousand acres of the Eld. He burns Caudicus out of his hiding place.
Something that particularly interests me about Dagon is that the Maer says, "Besides, I believe there may be magic at work in the Eld, and that is outside Dagon's ken."

If Dagon is Amyr this becomes something rather interesting. We know that the Chandrian have their magical signs, but do their destruction and violence with swordwork and the like. What if the Amyr are similar? The Duke of Gibea spends his time working on advancing the medical field, a field that, as it is practiced in the medica, uses remarkably little magic.

What if when Chronicler talks about Kvothe being a "red handed killer" (Amyr reference) and a new chandrian he is close to the mark? We already know there are parallels between Kvothe and Lanre, the loss of love, speaking to the Cthaeh, lack of sleep. What if whatever has happened to Kvothe, the possible name change, the killing an angel, or whatever has given him some attributes similar to the Chandrian or Amyr, and that is what is preventing his use of magic. That was how I read the skin dancer's question on rereads is "Te Rhintae?" "Are you a Rhinta?" It seems to recognize something of the Chandrian in Kvothe (or I could be completely wrong).
This is already far too long so I'm going to stop here and hopefully break my thoughts on other subjects into more posts later.
30. Dessert
What is the general consensus on the sword "Folly" in the Waystone? I always assumed it was Cinder's due to the similar imagery, but I suppose it could be an ademic sword.

In the Waystone:
"... But when the light touched the sword there were no beginnings to be seen. In fact, the light the sword reflected was dull, burnished, and ages old... The sword shone with the knowledge that dawn was a small beginning compared to the ending of a season: the ending of a year."

"His eyes were like his sword, and neither one reflected the light of the fire or the setting sun."
31. DoYouHas
Oooh, I forgot to mention my favorite parallel between frame Kvothe and Haliax.

Kvothe-Chronicler exchange:
""Some people say there was a woman-"
"What do they know?" Kvothes voice cut like a saw through bone. ... His right hand, tangled in a clean white cloth, made a slow fist. Eight inches away a bottle shattered."

Haliax-Selitos exchange:
"Selitos spoke softly, "Safe from the joy and wonder..."
"There is no joy!" Lanre shouted in an awful voice. Stones shattered at the sound and the sharp edges of echo came back to cut at them."
32. Anne-Lise
Bast's title is:
Bastas, Son of Remmen, Prince of Twilight and the Telwyth Mael
That make Remmen a King. I missed that inference before.
Jo Walton
33. bluejo
RobMRobM: Thank you!

Anne-Lise: Or a queen. Or a prince -- as in the Russian model.
John Graham
34. JohnPoint
Anne-Lise @32: Or, depending on how Pat uses the Oxford comma, Remmen himself could be Prince of Twilight and the Telwyth Mael.
thistle pong
35. thistlepong
I've mentioned before that a chance encounter with a reader who owned the first printing of the trade paperback revealed a sort of odd, crucial change in the text. Some dialogue followed and it came out that only that version had that, and other, changes. The mass market paperback dropped awhile back and I managed to pick up the first printing. And lo, there were the changes again.

Anyway, this is the driest sort of geekery that some folks might be interested in.


Part One

Chapter Titles: WMF


HC - confirmed
Kindle - confirmed
MMPB (1st) - confirmed

TP (1st) - reported
TP (2nd on) - reported

MMPB (2nd on) - unavailable

ARC - as posted on the during the reread

Chapter titles are identical except for:

103 - Close Enough to Touch (HC, Kindle, TP 2nd on)
103 - Lessons (TP 1st printing, MMPB first printing)

124 - Of Names (HC, Kindle)*
124 - Secrets and Mysteries (MMPB 1st printing)*

The ARC is identical until Chapter 96, at which point several chapters appear to be combined, some under different titles, ultimately realigning with the others at 119 with When Words Fail, which is Chapter 121 in all other versions. Jo began using the Kindle version around that point, though, and I'm somewhat confused about whether the information after that is entirely accurate.

* I'm currently seeking confirmation of this difference in the Trade Paperback printings
Steven Halter
36. stevenhalter
A sphere is clearly the most obvious representaion of Faen geography. A light source fixed with respect to one side of the sphere pretty much gives us an exact duplicate of the Faen realm as described so far.
We discussed this somewhere in the past and I remarked that it was interesting that Kvothe found the aspect of Fae that walking in one direction for long enough would bring you back to where you started. This implies some things about Fae but also implies that either Kvothe is ill informed about 4 corners geometry or 4-C isn't on a spherical world.
There are actually a large number of objects that have the property that a straight line will reconnect with itself. Another interesting geometric object is a flat square torus. This object is square but if you go across one edge, you end up on the other side. The easiest way to picture this is a computer monitor and some old video games that used this property. For some interesting extensions to this, see:

In the above link, they have managed to give a visualization of a square flat torus embedded in 3-D mapped such that all distances are preserved--it wasn't stretched in other words.
This is particularly interesting given that there is a comment on "Manifold maths" in the texts and the method of embedding a square flat torus into 3-D depends upon the Nash Embedding Theorem (see a beautiful mind) that states that every Riemannian manifold can be isometrically embedded into some Euclidian space. Isometric here refers to preserving the length of every path before and after embedding. Fairly cool stuff.
37. DoYouHas
Doesn't it say in the story about Jax that different rooms in the folding house are in different seasons, not just different lights? In a fixed light source world, how would seasons work? If they are fixed as well, like the Jax story would seem to imply, would it make sense that they are the other axis in the Fae? Light-Dark and Summer-Winter?
Patrick Stultz
38. Audion
@DoYouHas 29 - Cthaeh

I always thought of the Cthaeh not as omniscient in an overall god like sense, but a targeted foreknowledge sort of way. Meaning he only knows the future pertaining to the person he is talking to right now, he can't just see the future all the time.
If this is the case it still makes it a devastating creature, but also explains why the world isn't up in flames completely either.. it can only do so much with what it has.
Arm an infant all you want, but it can still only do so much ill.
Andrew Loyd
39. DoYouHas
@Audion 38,

I did a bit of rereading and I think the right answer is probably somewhere between our two impressions of the Cthaeh.

I think Bast completely believes what he says that the Cthaeh can see the whole future, perfectly. I don't think this can be true because I don't want to believe that the entire history of the KKC is one massive tragic chain reaction from the Cthaeh. Possible, but super depressing. (This is why I initially started looking for limits to the Cthaeh.)

Upon a reread of the section I noticed that "What can you tell me of the Amyr?" is not Kvothe's first question despite the reaction it gets from the Cthaeh and the emphasis put on asking of it from Felurian. The first question is "I thought the red ones offended you?". Kvothe asks the Cthaeh about the Cthaeh, nothing happens. But when the Cthaeh get's Kvothe to admit to and ask an external question, we get the slow and satisfied "Ahhhh". Perhaps the Cthaeh does see the future perfectly, like Bast believes, but it only sees in regards to what is asked and the asker. All of the knowledge it displays relates to the Amyr, the Chandrian, and Kvothe himself. This includes the Maer and Denna because the Maer would be attached to both Kvothe and the Amyr. Same story for Denna except she is caught up with the Chandrian in some way (I'm pretty sure).

But what supports this you might ask? The Cthaeh displays a lack of knowledge about Kvothe before he asks the question about the Amyr. ""You are Felurian's new manling, aren't you?" I hesitated, but the dry voice continued as if I'd answered. "I thought as much. I can smell the iron on you. Just a hint. Still, one has to wonder how she stands it."" If the Cthaeh does not lie, as we are led to believe, then it does not know for sure who Kvothe is and used deduction to figure out he was Felurian's manling. Compare this to the instant after the question where the Cthaeh knows Kvothe's life story.

I also think that the reason that the Cthaeh had to let Kvothe go before it could bite him or drive him beyond insanity is because it knew the gap in the Sithe's guard was closing. Or maybe because it knew that Felurian would destroy Kvothe if she saw his eyes weren't clear.
lake sidey
40. lakesidey
@28 JohnPoint Maybe a Klein bottle?

41. Dmack
The master-student relationship between K and Bast poses a challenge to a widely-held assumption: that D3 will end with K putting everything right in the world he tore apart.

It's possible that K's actually training Bast up to do this; that D3 brings us right up until the present day, completing the "Kingkiller Chronicle", and from there on out it's Bast's story.
Carl Banks
42. robocarp

I don't really think it's widely believed K will set the world right at the end of D3, and personally, I highly doubt it.

One little thing to keep in mind though: tNotW actually started a couple days before D1, so it's possible, likely even, that the final book could end a few days after D3. I doublt Kote could Save the World in one day (most of which will be taken up telling a story), but give him three more days after his mind has been awakened and maybe he can do it. He is Kvothe, after all. So Saving the World could happen, but I doubt it.
43. mutantalbinocrocodile
Apologies as I haven't had time to do more than skim the previous entries:

This has actually been bugging me much more than many of the more popular mysteries. What on earth does Bast want to learn from Kvothe? As a teacher/student relationship, it's exceedingly bizarre. Kvothe only seems to ever give one homework assignment, which is in a subject that he probably doesn't know himself (Celum Tinture is an alchemy textbook). He doesn't seem to care in the slightest that Bast never does any of his "homework". He poses him the one puzzle with the chest but doesn't seem to have any clear pedagogical purpose. So:
1. Is the teacher/student relationship a ruse? Who are they trying to fool? ("Each other" might not be an unacceptable answer.)
2. Does Bast want to learn something that Kvothe is consistently refusing to teach him?
Wallace Forman
45. WallaceForman
* I like the idea of the Mael as an axis of Faen geography. It is the first idea that has allowed me to make sense of Bast's discussion of his proximity to the Telwyth Mael. Nice going!

* I doubt the Faen realm has an actual shape. No doubt its geography is alien and other-worldly. From Felurian's dicussion, it seems to have multiple axes of spectrums of certain characteristics, but they seem not to be related to one another in a consistent, mappable way (one of the axes seems to keep changing, or there are more than 2 axes).

* Remmen is not necessarily a King of Prince. He could be a consort of a Queen. Or Bast's title might merely be some sort of honorific, rather than a hereditary title.

* My suspicion is that the Cthaeh sees names, rather than the future. A possible limitation is that he cannot predict name changes... i.e. his weakness is the consequences of unforeseeable shaping. This could have significant implications if Kvothe has in fact changed his name, perhaps foiling the Cthaeh's plans? It could also be significant if Kvothe is bound back to his old name. This, in fact, is what I suspect Bast and the Chronicler are doing, starting from when Chronicler says, "Then again..." "You are Kvothe."
47. Peaceman
I refer to Pat´s favorite quotes and try to get a connection to the topic.
Bast: “You do not know the first note of the music that moves me.”
(The music of Kvothe, his master, who don´t play it anymore?! Maybe Bast is waiting for the song, which set him free… ) Because like Kvothe pointed out : “Metal rusts, music lasts forever.”
Futhermore I will try to initiate a consideration about :
Bast: “We all become what we pretend to be.” This in relation to his first quote could mean, that nobody knows his purpose but we see that he is a student/subordinateof Kvothe and at the End he could act contrary to his purpose to assist Kvothe indistress.

Out of topic, why do you think Pats likes the quote “Blue,Blue,Blue” of Elodin so much? There must be a greater meaning behind it but it doesn´t extrapolate to me.
Nisheeth Pandey
48. Nisheeth
@47, Peaceman:
There doesn't have to be any greater meaning to it. I like that quote a lot as well, and I never saw is as having some special significance. I just liked it.
Andrew Loyd
49. DoYouHas
It is extremely hard to speculate on the Bast-Kvothe relationship or just Bast in general because there is so little background information. We have no idea at what point in Kvothe's constantly growing power and understanding he met Bast. We don't know how long they have been together or whether they met in Fae or 4C. Bast in general is just a big question mark. We know he cares about Kvothe, he can do magic, and he has a title, that is about it. His scheming up until this point really can't be argued to be malicious over attempts to get Kvothe to act like Kvothe.

However, I do have a theory that might explain their relationship. The thing that fits best in my opinion is that Kvothe saved Bast's life at somepoint and that initiated the cliche 'my life is yours' or 'I'm forever in your service' moments. This would be something that Bast would take with seriousness and formality in refering to Kvothe as master and would get him following Kvothe around. It also explains Kvothe's side of the relationship where it is less formal and not thought of as much in terms of Master-servant but rather teacher-student.

As for what Kvothe is teaching Bast, I think it is entirely possible that most of Bast's education is based on university style studies. We know from Felurian that the Fae lose much of their power when they enter the 4C, which says to me that most Fae don't bother trying to cross. I think it is likely that the Fae are pretty ignorant about the 4C world, like a lesser version of what your average person thinks about the Fae. We know that the Fae tell manling stories, and use magic that seems pretty exclusive to them (at least at the moment) and Bast is at least competent with it. I think it is reasonable that upon following Kvothe back to the 4C world (probably Bast's first trip) Bast sees the studies and learning that don't exist in the Fae and wants to learn. The teaching provides a nice norm for interaction between Bast and Kvothe in what must have been an awkward situation for Kvothe. Then they become friends.

This is the only thing I could think of that fit. Thoughts?
thistle pong
50. thistlepong
Out of topic, why do you think Pats likes the quote “Blue,Blue,Blue” of Elodin so much? There must be a greater meaning behind it but it doesn´t extrapolate to me.
There doesn't have to be any greater meaning to it. I like that quote a lot as well, and I never saw is as having some special significance. I just liked it.
I think it's the only triple epizeuxis in the books, though. That sort of repetition for emphasis isn't something you pass over lightly. It should mean something from a structural standpoint.

At the very least it calls attention to itself, to the chapter it ends, and to "blue." It's saying, "Hey, take a closer look at me! What do you see?"

Think about where a lot of our speculation starts. How old is the University? What is Naming? What does the sleeping mind have to do with the price of butter? Has Kvothe already been expelled? It all starts here. The politics of the University are in stark relief, Valaritas makes an appearance, the "seven words that will make a person love you," and the criminally ignored "ten words that will break a strong man's will." If anything we should maybe take a closer look at bear-baiting.

And blue? The first revealed sign of the Chandrian. Arliden's analogy about hereditary eye color. the pale blue rhinna, Denna's colors starting fifteen chapters into WMF. The livery of the Penitent King. Blue! Blue! Blue!
Steven Halter
51. stevenhalter
thistlepong@50:That's a good point about the ten words. We've noticed sentences of seven words in a number of cases. Ten word sentences must not stick out quite so obviously.
There are a lot of blues as you point out. Not sure how it combines.
thistle pong
52. thistlepong

Seven word sentences stick out because they're emphasized in the narrative. While not all of them are specifically lampshaded, enough are that we know it's important. Every time Denna says, "That's seven words," we're reminded about the importance of the claim, the relationship, and the number.

There are other ways of drawing attention. Epizeuxis, or any repetition, really, is one of them. I'm not saying all those blues are combined. I'm saying they're all important to the story as it's told and as it's formally constructed. It's like a key. Repeating blue three times calls our attention to it.

If, for example, the connection between Alveron's colors and the Penitent King's soldiers' livery hadn't already been noted, and Peaceman had asked hir question, we might pay closer attention to blue and discover it.

I'd argue that it calls attention to color as well. I might be biased, of course, given my relatively recent prediliction for alchemical symbolism. On the other hand, that's yeilded some startlingly productive readings even stripped of the fancy literary tradition stuff.

Actually, with that in mind, I could throw out that both blue (or azure) and lute (though not the instrument) are such symbols. At the end of the niggredo, the lute (or seal) is broken to reveal the blue tinged matter ready for purification in the albedo. Gibberish, I know. But it's in the right place, right at the end of the narrative, followed by another symbol, the cervus fugitivus (Denna, the fleeing hind,) signaling the next stage.

So far, my favorite ten words are, "The whole story falls apart if Lanre isn’t the hero.”
Carl Banks
53. robocarp

I'd guess PR would find the "You saved my life, therefore you are my master forever" thing to be too cliche.

How about this:

Bast is a member of the Sithe who's been assigned to monitor Kvothe. The silly elf bit is all an act. His present goal is to get K out of his funk. The real reason he is so horrified to learn that K spoke to the Cthaeh because it means he has to kill him.

No? Bast is an Amyr who's been assigned to Kvothe. He is wearing a double glamour (he's a man disguised as a fairy disguised as a man). This explains Bast's tendency to do things for the greater good (like invite people to rob the Waystone Inn). Also explains how he can grab Chronicler's guilder.

No? Bast is Denna. She is wearing a double glamour (she's a woman disguised as a fairy disguised as a man). Have you noted a few undertones in the relationship between Bast and Kote? That's why. That's why Bast is so desperate to get his Reshi back: Denna isn't attracted to the boring innkeeper.

Still no? Bast is Auri. Ok this is getting sillly.
54. aethel

You actually have hit upon (in your first item) something close to my personal speculation. (Firmly in the "theory", no hard evidence to back it up category.) PR goes out of his way to set the expectation that Bast is Kvothe' ally, while at the same time remind us he has a dangerous side. It seems like he might be playing with our expectations to eventually pull a reversal. What if Bast is an agent of Felurian's, charged with making sure Kvothe fulfills his promise to return to Felurian?

Part of his duty would almost surely be making sure it was fiery Kvothe, and not dull Kote, who returned.

This is not to say that the two don't have a strong, genuine personal bond, or a student/mentor relationship. But these could be things that developed in spite of the situation.
55. androgynes
Hi this is my first post so sorry if it has been mentioned already.

Has anyone mad a connection between the mains and Iaxs house?
Both are desscribed very similar as not quite fitting/counterintuitive. A similar argument could be made for the Underthing

If one or the other holds it would imply a connection between the university and the shapers. As opposed to the usuually assued connection between the university and the namers.

In general I highly doubt an actual history of the 4C exists. There are convincing ideas like Tabolin=Elodin out there, which require some people being far older then they appear to be. Or at least that their "story" is backdated. On the other hand we know equally famous people (K, the guy Chronicler interviewed in 2 days) still being alive.

I havent found solid evidence of some kind of rebirth pattern (like in WoT) however the popularity of some story characters doesnt seem to fit with an actual history.

Maybe the fae offers a solution here as there is no (strict) temporal alignment between fae and 4C
Nisheeth Pandey
56. Nisheeth
@53, robocarp:
I like your second idea, that Bast is an Amyr. Just a nitpick. Felurian says, "there were never any human amyr".
So he might be one of the original Amyr and using only single glamour.
57. shunt
3 colors blue might mean liberty, equality, and fraternity.

Is that any help ?
58. Peaceman

why do you think so?

Some sentences before Elodin said "blue,blue ,blue" , he mentioned that this is another way to understanding. In the german book it is translated as another way of knowledge acquisition. Maybe a hint of pat that persons or things connected with blue help Kvothe to find more information about the chandrian etc. .
thistle pong
59. thistlepong
Sweet merciful Tehlu! You're a German reader? May we incessantly question you?
Andrew Loyd
60. DoYouHas
androgynes@55 - I hadn't noted the similarity between Jax's house and mains. I do think that the similarity is there but I don't think they are the same thing. The Hespe's story about Jax and Felurian's story about Iax corroborate eachother and pretty heavily point to the folding house being the Fae. Also, Felurian describes the Fae realm as being sewn from a whole cloth. Mains is described as being a number of smaller buildings that have been joined, giving it it's counter intuitive and cobbled together look.

Robocarp@53 - I was giving the simplest example of the cliche, which I guess is the easiest to dismiss. PR doesn't seem particularly afraid of writing cliches, just so long as he can make them interesting. The university of magic and the old man who shows up and guides the hero would be two examples. I do think it is entirely possible that the situation is one of Bast being indebted to Kvothe. It may not have to be for saving his life, but the vibe is there.

As for Sithe, Amyr, and Denna. Sithe doesn't fit with the episode with the guards. Bast sent them in to rob Kvothe, not kill him. The Amyr is possible but unlikely as we know that Kvothe is going to draw closer to the Amyr and the Chandrian in D3 and it is unlikely that Kvothe would not know that Bast was aligned with them. Yes it is possible, but I don't think there is much evidence. It feels like a theory that came from taking two things we know very little about (Bast, Amyr) and mashing them together on that virtue alone. Denna is super unlikely for plenty of reasons, my favorite being the 'perfect ears' description from Bast.

I think there is plenty of reason to think that Bast is up to something devious, and plenty of reason to think that there is something important in Bast's back story. However, I have yet to see a good reason why Bast is a sinister force for all the speculation on the dastardly things he could be or might be doing. It feels more like we are projecting motives onto Bast because he is an unknown in a lot of ways, and so we want to pair him up with other unknowns in the story.
61. aethel

I certainly agree that we don't have any good reasons to suspect any one particular devious twist to Bast over another. (My own is definitely just personal speculation.)

However, to steal someone's term from another thread, I think we're seeing some pretty consistent "character poetics" on Bast surrounding reversals of our expectations. Right now it seems to me that he is being set up as appearing totally dedicated to Kvothe. Which makes me expect a reversal of some kind.
62. Peacemann
@59 thistlepong
What do you mean?
Steven Halter
63. stevenhalter
Peacemann@62:we like finding out translation differences as a cross check on what meanings of words PR is really intending.
64. Peaceman
@63 stevenhalter: Thats no problem ;) Which words are you interested in?
65. Anne-Lise Pasch
@53. robocarp:
"You saved my life, therefore you are my master forever" ... that's 10 words! ;p
Jason Hudson
66. Pykus
I have to get ready for work, so most of this will have to wait, but OH BOY do I have some good stuff for you guys! I've been WAITING for a new post so I could share! :D

I discovered something the other day that got me all excited, and then I realized that it felt familiar, and that I might have read it here already.

[url=[/url] : Resh as an abbreviation can stand for [url=[/url]... or [url=[/url]... as a generic term for a teacher or a personal spiritual guide.

"Reshi" also seems quite similar to Rishi, which might have come from a word meaning "seer".

In either case, it also struck me that "Bastas, Son of Remmen" means maybe there's a connection to "Finol of the clear and shining eye" who "was killed by gremmen at the Drossen Tor." Gremmen isn't capitalized in the copy I'm reading, so I'm not inclined to do more than note the similarity until it makes more sense.

Jason Hudson
67. Pykus
SO! Pardon me while I weave you a story...

@55 When we meet Tehlu at the earliest point in his timeline he's with Selitos, Aleph and company. He volunteers to become an "Angel" type creature because "I hold justice foremost in my heart" as he puts it. The angels are told they can "punish or reward what you yourselves witness from this day forth" giving us a hint of why they are doing this.

The next we hear of Tehlu he is impregnating Perial and being reborn as Menda. This story comes from Trappis who is (as I recall PR saying when asked) a priest in a Tehlin sect. We take all our stories with a grain of salt here, but there are elements of truth to it.

Lets assume for the moment that this is what became of all the "angels". They would be periodically reborn (as Tehlu said he would be "if called in the proper manner"), they would learn and mature quickly. They would reward and punish as at least part of their goal as stated by Aleph, and as demonstrated by Tehlu in the story of Menda. With Scarpi's story implying that they would forget what they knew I assume they would start fresh each time they were reborn with no recollection of previous lives (Menda did not prclaim himself to be Tehlu until he was already an adult, so perhaps this information might be learned as they age?). The statement that they "must punish or reward only what you yourself witness from this day forth" fits with that theory and also explains at least part of the reason for this change. I believe that the speed with which Menda aged was overstated, and that the story was originally about how he learned and matured quickly. I have no evidence for this other than we haven't seen anyone else age that quickly.

In terms of our hero, all we know at the beginning is that he was an exceptionally fast learner. In light of all this, however, it stands out to me how frequently Kvothe metes out justice without thinking of it as such. He'll steal pens and ink from an asshole bookshop owner, but leave money for a cobbler who asked for none. He does many things to aid the Maer (though this is also all in his own self interest) who is a good man, but also goes out of his way to pay back Ambrose's horrid behavior regardless of its potential (inevitable) cost to himself. His repayment is blind to status or wealth.

This also led me to the speculation that the reincarnated angels had, in the past, eventually become the Ciridae. As purified souls (per Skarpi's story) their judgement would understandably be "above reproach" (and I could not imagine what else would be enough to grant someone that distinction... but I'm starting to believe there were others). Add to that the times Kvothe is mentioned as a Ciridae (by Auri) and the times he had some imagery around him that might imply that link. For instance, perhaps the blood running down his hands as he cleared the bandit camp was close to the events that were the actual origin of the tattoos. This would mean that the angels reborn had allied themselves with the Amir, those that had a similar calling but pursued it in a different way, which would make very much sense. I'm also questioning the exact relationship they had and I have an intreaguing idea. More on that later though. :)

I had a moment of clarity a few weeks ago while re-listening to the audio book. I already suspected Kvothe of being one of the angels (Tehlu originally, but I have a better guess now. :D), along with Denna and Devi, but what got me was Kvothe's description of Sim from NoW Ch91, "Good, honest, gentle Sim. He could never bring himself to say bad things about another person, just imply them. Even that was hard for him." and it reminded me of the description of Enlas, "who would not carry a sword or eat the flesh of animals, and who no man had ever known to speak hard words." I can't say without a doubt that Sim doesn't eat meat, but the one time I recall meat being on the menu in the mess it is stated that Sim did not eat. It is mentioned though that his father would have liked him to be a soldier, but he would not do that. Also:

(NoW:54)I liked Simmon, but he was terribly innocent at times.
(NoW:56)Wilem put a protective arm around Simmon, who leaned unashamedly against his shoulder. "Our Simmon has a tender heart," he said gently. "I imagine he meant to say that he liked it very much."
(NoW:65)"I like them," she said. "Wilem is a stone in deep water. Simmon is like a boy splashing in a brook."
(NoW:87)"I love you, Sim," I said earnestly. "Sometimes I think you're the only honest person I know." He looked me over. "You're drunk." "No, it's the truth. You're a good person. Better than I'll ever be."
(NoW:91)Good, honest, gentle Sim. He could never bring himself to say bad things about another person, just imply them. Even that was hard for him.
(WMF:33)"In the interest of pure accuracy," Fela said in an offhand way, "Ambrose didn't use the words 'daft bint.' " She didn't let go of Sim's arm. Simmon looked a little embarrassed. "Yes, well. There are some things you don't call a lady, even in fun." He reluctantly let go of Fela and sat on the trunk of the fallen tree. Fela sat next to him.
(WMF:39)"I have a hard time imagining Sim as a priest," I admitted. "Or a soldier, come to think of it."

If that's a positive match, who else could we peg like this? This might indicate that there might be similarities that persist through incarnations. Who else learns with exceptional speed? Who else could be described as pure of heart? Who else has exceptional hands and sees things as they are moreso than others?

I believe Denna to be "Fair Geisa, who had a hundred suitors in Belen before the walls fell, the first woman to know the un-asked-for touch of man." (I'm working on assembling a list of references for her.)

Fella might be "Tall Kirel, who had been burned but left living in the ash of Myr Tariniel."
(NOW:68)"This isn't the hand of some swooning princess who sits tatting lace and waiting for some prince to save her. This is the hand of a woman who would climb a rope of her own hair to freedom, or kill a captor ogre in his sleep." I looked into her eyes. "And this is the hand of a woman who would have made it through the fire on her own if I hadn't been there. Singed perhaps, but safe." (A tenuous link, but they can't all be perfect! :P)

I believe Devi to be "Deah, who had lost two husbands to the fighting, and whose face and mouth and heart were hard and cold as stone."
(WMF:)"I made Re'lar before they threw me out, you little slipstick. I earned it. My Alar is like the ocean in storm."
(WMF:)"Oh you're very good. I almost believe the stories about you now. But what makes you think you can do what even Elxa Dal couldn't? Why do you think they expelled me? They feared a woman who could match a master by her second year." Sweat made her pale hair cling to her forehead. She clenched her teeth, her pixie face savage with determination.

Auri might be "Ordal, the youngest of them all, who had never seen a thing die, stood bravely before Aleph, her golden hair bright with ribbon." I'm a little bit inclined to think it might be Celian just based on her quick learning and her absolute bravery, but I'm not certain of that at all.

I also believe that Elodin is Tehlu. Mostly this is because of how he feels towards the residents of Haven and the barkeep of the Half-Mast's comments about how "everyone knows God's displeasure falls heavy on those who raise their hands to madmen....", but it also has to do with the fact that "They mete out justice to the world, and Tehlu is the greatest of them all—". Given how quickly Elodin became Chancellor it's a solid guess, but I'm sure there's more to the story. :)

What about Kvothe?
(WMF:73)I opened my mouth to speak, and it felt like cracking open the door of a furnace.
(WMF:112)"Even when you make your face a mask, your eyes are like glittering windows."
(WMF:120)"But today as you spoke, it came to me that the gentleness was the mask. And this other half-seen face, this dark and ruthless thing, that is the true face hiding underneath."
(WMF:127)"You have a fine anger." I lay on my back, her small body curled under my arm, her heart-shaped face resting gently on my chest. "What do you mean by that?" I asked. "I think anger might be the wrong word." "I mean Vaevin," she said, using the Ademic term. "Is that the same?" "I don't know that word," I admitted. "I think anger is the right word," she said. "I have spoken with Vashet in your language, and she did not correct me."

That sounds like Andan. "And beside her came Anden, whose face was a mask with burning eyes, whose name meant 'anger'."

What of previous incarnations? Would Andan possibly become as notable in his other incarnations? Kvothe has similarities to several characters from the past and is made mention as being like them or even being the characters themselves. How many times was Kvothe referred to as a young Taborlin? A Ciridae? Having Illien's fire? Auri gave him the coin, key and candle... I think he was also Sir Savien, and that perhaps Eloine was a previous incarnation of Denna/Geisa. A love story that started 5000 years ago would be a hell of a thing...

I believe that Taborlin was an incarnation that witnessed the deeds of the Chandrian, and so like Kvothe, had the determination to learn magic and naming so as to punish them, or perhaps just Syphus, much like Kvothe fixates particularly on Cinder. Illien might never have seen their deeds and so would be free to become the best at music and singing without being compelled to focus on the arcane.

What else supports this idea?
(WMF:23)"You look like an Amyr," she said. "Kvothe is one of the Ciridae."
(WMF:24)"You are my Ciridae, and thus above reproach." She reached out to touch the center of my bloody chest with a finger. "Ivare enim euge."
(NOW:28)Then Aleph spoke their long names and they were wreathed in a white fire. The fire danced along their wings and they became swift. The fire flickered in their eyes and they saw into the deepest hearts of men. The fire filled their mouths and they sang songs of power. Then the fire settled on their foreheads like silver stars and they became at once righteous and wise and terrible to behold. Then the fire consumed them and they were gone forever from mortal sight.
(WMF:97)I felt as if this was the only time in my life I had been fully awake. Everything looked clear and sharp, as if I was seeing with a new set of eyes. As if I wasn't bothering with my eyes at all, and was looking at the world directly with my mind. The sleeping mind, some piece of me realized faintly. No longer sleeping, I thought and smiled(...)Now I knew her to the marrow of her bones. Her eyes were like four lines of music, clearly penned. My mind was filled with the sudden song of her. I drew a breath and sang it out in four hard notes(...)I cupped my hands and breathed a sigh into the hollow space within. I spoke a name. I moved my hands and wove my breath gossamer-thin. It billowed out, engulfing her, then burst into a silver flame that trapped her tight inside its changing name(...)I spoke again, and the wind brought her down among the pillows. I made a tearing motion and the silver flame that once had been my breath became three notes of broken song and went to play among the trees(...)I saw myself reflected in her eyes, naked among the cushions. My power rode like a white star on my brow.

One more thing:

On Reddit, jakelear posted the question of who polices the Amyr, which PR comments on intriguingly in this video:

I believe the angels to be the Ciridae, or at least some of them. Or if not, they are at least the ones that police them and the rest of the Amyr. When someone does something for the greater good but has to be stopped, like the Duke of Gibea, who is there to stop them? I especially like the way it fits with the picture on the vase that Nina drew for Kvothe.
(WMF:35)"I don't like looking at him even now," she said. "They were all awful to look at, but he was the worst. I can't get faces right, but his was terrible grim. He looked so angry. He looked like he was ready to burn down the whole world."... She'd painted the Amyr so the words Andan and Ordal rested directly on top of his shoulders, one on each side. Almost as if she were hoping the names would weigh him down, or trap him.

I would fathom a guess that the Amyr on the vase is Selitos. I don't have the kind of supporting evidence I would like, but what if he ran amok? What if his idea of the greater good at some point became killing the Chandrian despite the consequences to the rest of the world? Might Anden and Ordal have punished him for what he did? How would they do that? Would they be hesitant to kill him since his help might be necessary at some point? Especially if he is the one who has the power to defeat the Chandrian? They might, perhaps, close the stone he used to cut out his eye in an impossible to open wooden box, therefore trapping him in a tree? With his ability to see the truth of people by looking at them, one might think he knew the future...
John Graham
68. JohnPoint
Pykus @67 -- Interesting. We have speculated on a few of these connections once or twice before, but I don't think that anyone has put together that elaborate of a case for Kvothe et al. being incarnations of the angels. We have often dismissed it as cliché, but have to remind ourselves that Pat isn't completely opposed to putting his own spin on clichés.

I particularly like the potential tie-in with the Selitos=the Cthaeh theory. It would provide some more "plausible" connection (beyond Scarpi's story).
Jason Hudson
69. Pykus
@68 Thanks very much!

What made the most recent change to my theory was a comment I got on Reddit that to have Kvothe be Tehlu smacks too much of a "golden Child" or "Chosen One" type thing that apparently PR dislikes.

With all this, and especially with Kvothe being Andan, it really averts that pitfall and it is something that I find most satisfying.

Now the angels are our allies in a perpetual war between our great grandparents. They're the ones that keep us from getting crushed between them as a result, much like Bredon's description of what would happen if Kvothe were to keep the Maer's ring, "crushed between his mortar and her pestle."
Carl Banks
70. robocarp

Fascinating. You know it's pretty good when you're able to guess which character is which angel before reading it. Kvothe=Andan was the first thing I thought as soon as I knew where you were headed, also I correctly chose Geisa, Deah, and Ordal. Kirel as Fela makes sense, but I didn't think of it because I took Kirel to be male. Can't think of who Lecelte would be be. Imet could be Mola if you allow gender flips (remember what she did with Kvothe's mommet).

Well, the problem with this sort of thing is that good stories usually aim for a mix of personalities, and when you get two such sets of personalities, it's almost inevitable that some will match up, especially if you give yourself permission to ignore important people if they don't have a good counterpart (which angel is Wil?). For instance, you could probably match Kvothe's buddies to the Greek Pantheon fairly well. So pardon my slight dubiousness. :)

What I think is a interesting question is how the characters might see their relationship to the angels. Tehlinism is monotheistic so it's not likely that the angels had their own (adherent) cults, but maybe some people thought of themselves as playing for Team Andan or Team Ordal. Was Denna's behavior shaped in part by identifying with Geisha?
thistle pong
71. thistlepong
Did we miss this?
Menda looked to be a young man of seventeen. He stood proud and tall, with coal-black hair and eyes.
There's a lot of if wafting off this. I wanna acknowledge that right away. On the other hand, I think the Selitos/Cthaeh thing is solid enough, and the Encanis links are pretty strong, too.

Anyway, some things, prolly a bits of Pykus's post, JohnPoint's comment, and Pat's discussion about the NotW deck, constructed enough of a narrative to incite curiosity about Menda's eyes. Seems odd to make them coal-black when so much of Cinder's stage presence hinges on that. It would kind of tighten up the whole, "did me a bad turn once," thing.

I didn't get very far corroborating the story, though. I mean, it makes a little more sense if Menda is intimately linked with the Menders. They're heretics. And we know Trapis is, er, apostate or whatever. I took a look at "A Time for Demons," since I think that's the only other popular depiction of Tehlu. A few things stand out. He's dresses in all white. He's masked. And the pageantry occurs during the snows of midwinter. Emphasizing or occluding all of Ferule's signs.
72. Pianohtoaster
isnt that interesting, the midwinter pageantry is also where Kvothe meets the "angel" dressed as Encanis (wings of fire and shadow) and Skarpi, who talks of Tehlu as if he personally knows him.
73. mikeN
Hey guys, I've been reading the origional read through threads and sumary threads here off and on for quite a while, but not the comments before so apologies if this stuff has been covered before.

One thing I noticed for the first time last night while reading Kvothe's story about Faeriniel and the old beggar in WMF. I have always assosciated the old man with the tinker from the begining of the story of Iax and the moon.
One thing I never noticed before was that his name, Sceop, is an anglo-saxon word for a singer or musician and translates as "Shaper."
Andrew Loyd
74. DoYouHas

I've always favored Skarpi as Sceop. Physical description and the ability to tell stories so well that it would make the Ruh ask him to travel with them both work.

I like the idea that there are Ruach around that are not Amyr, Angels, or Chandrian, remnants of a lost age. And while they might have agendas they are more like third parties in the gigantic struggle. This is the category I put Skarpi in without any reason other than I think he is Sceop and it feels right.
Carl Banks
75. robocarp
DoYoHas@74 and mikeN@73

It's been noticed before that sceop is Anglo/Saxon for shaper/musician and someone made a long post about it (pianohtoaster@315 in the last thread). Very interesting theory with that makes a lot of clever connections.

Anyway, I've decided that the Faerinel story doesn't feel like a true story, or even based on a true story with a lot of details changed. What it feels like is hidden ancient wisdom: the story was originally written to help preserve secrets, but as the story was passed down, the secret meaning was lost, and the story came to be interpreted literally.

So, for instance, the thing about refusing wine and accepting water: the present-day Edema Ruh believe this to be a ritual to determine who should be accepted into the Family, but the real meaning might be very different, like (I'm making this up) Sceop (the shaper) has to refuse the tempation of shaping magic (wine) and only use knowing (water).

There are some comparable examples to this sort of thing in literature. The Book of Revelation in the Bible had many allusions to current events of the time, but later generations didn't get the allusions, and interpreted it as an end-of-the-world prophecy rather than a condemnation of the Roman Empire. The original meaning was hidden until 20th century antropologists uncovered it. Another example is from the Sherlock Holmes story "The Adventure of the Musgrave Ritual".
76. Vayda
I've just finished my own reread of the books and since then I've been obsessively perusing these threads. I have a theory of my own about d3 that I haven't seen anyone here come even close to, so I'm wondering if I'm completely off base or seeing something that maybe no one else has yet.

I think there's a third world we will encounter during d3. If the mortal realm is one, and Fae is another, I think there's a third world that's sealed beyond the doors of stone. I hashed this theory out with my boyfriend, who is just as obsessive as I am, and I think I've compiled some good evidence that this third world could exist.

First, the only mention of "doors of stone" in the first book is when Lanre is fighting the great beast at Drossen Tor. The book says "after the battle was finished and the enemy was set beyond the doors of stone, survivors found Lanre's body, cold and lifeless." Boyfriend and I initially assumed this was a metaphor for death, but what if it's not? If Lanre and the enemy were both dead, why specifically say "after the enemy was set beyond the doors of stone" and then describe Lanre's death differently? It sounds to me less like the enemy is simply dead, and more like they were driven back and the doors whence they came were sealed.

"Doors of stone" is said twice in WMF. The first time by Felurian, who says she will not say the name of the one who stole the moon, even though he is "beyond the doors of stone." That gives us two possibilities. First, Felurian could use "doors of stone" as a metaphor for death, and be worried that saying someone's name can call them back from death. There is precedent for that, with Lanre. However, the other alternative is that the moon-theif is still alive, and simply in another world, which the doors of stone are sealed entrances to. The second time the phrase is said in WMF, it's someone saying they "swear on the doors of stone," which, while an interesting thing to swear on, doesn't give us much information.

Oh, speaking of things Felurian said, she also mentioned that there "were never any human Amyr," which means that the Amyr were either Fae (inconsistent with the rest of the stories about them) or that the Amyr were a third sort of being (possibly the Ruach, which have been theorized over and over as the people-before-people.)

My next piece if evidence is that there are three metals that seem to have great significance within Rothfuss's world: copper, iron, and silver. Iron is the most obvious, with it's connection to the Faen world, as well as it's ability to harm (or at least cause pain or discomfort to) Faen creatures. Copper clearly has some kind of ability to bind namers, as evidenced by Elodin's copper-laden cell and the other bits and pieces that indicate copper is namer-bane. Plus, there was that blog post where Pat confirmed that a copper sword would be very useful if you wanted to kill a namer. So here's my thought: you want to hurt a Fae, use iron. You want to hurt a mortal, a namer, use copper. You want to hurt this third sort of being, use silver.

Proof that silver hurts the DOS-beings? Well, we know Lanre wielded a silver sword against the enemy he set beyond the doors of stone. Dedan and Martin argued over whether Taborlin's sword was made of silver or copper. Auri gives Kvothe a silver coin he's never seen before and says it will protect him. And in the poem that gives Kvothe and Bast the idea of decorating with holly for protection, the white riders carry silver swords. Finally, the pittance that tinkers are traditionally given is an iron penny, a copper penny, and a silver penny. Protection in fae, protection in the mortal world, and protection in the third world. (Assuming tinkers can, or could at one time, travel between the three, which seems to be a possibility based on Hespe's story of Jax and the tinker.)

As for what the doors of stone themselves actually are, how about the four-plate door as one of them? Plates on the door are made of copper, which could be a safety measure to keep namers from ever opening the door again. The Lackless door could be another, and perhaps Kvothe, as the "son who brings the blood" inadvertently opened the door, which released the Scrael? Or, worse, Kvothe got the Kingkiller title by killing someone who was opening the door, thus starting the civil war, but was too late to stop the door from opening anyway?

So what sort of being is beyond the doors of stone? Well, I suspect it's something akin to a demon, but no closer to a demon that a fairy is to one of the Fae. I think the scraeling came from beyond the doors of stone, and the demons of legend like Encanis came from there as well. If they're harmed by silver, that explains why Tehlu's midwinter mask is silver and the Tehlin justice symbol of silver scales. It does not explain why Kvothe's weapon of choice against the scraeling was iron... But if my theory were perfect I wouldn't be asking for thoughts on it!

Finally, my boyfriend asked a really important question: if there's a third realm, why is it not mentioned even a whisper in the first two books? For that, I went and looked up Fae in NOTW. There's no mention that Felurian is Fae, and although we know Bast is of the Faen court, we don't know that Fae is a completely separate world at all until book 2. Wouldn't we feel silly saying there's no mention of a third plane in books 1 or 2, only to find out that's where the Amyr are from?

I dunno, just seems to make sense to me. Anyone have an input on my crazy ramblings?
Steven Halter
77. stevenhalter
Vayda@76:I've mentioned the idea of whatever is behind the Doors of Stone being a distinct place from Fae or 4C a couple of times in the reread. I think it makes quite a lot of sense as:
1) If it was just in Fae then it becomes not so great a place to lock someone.
2) Evidence in the Jax story of knowledge of more than 2 worlds.

So, yes, I like the idea of there being at least 3 places. The doors you mention are clear possibilities for additional world entries. Note that they could lead each to a different world as well.
78. TheYllest
During my first re-read of NoTW, I began an attempt at establishing a timeline of events, including month, day, etc., but found several contradictions in the text to what I assumed to be canon, namely the days of the span and months of the year as given in the appendix of some editions. My initial intent was to sort out specifically what days within the lunar cycle Denna appeared, but have since found this impossible given the irregularities in day, month, and season.

Days: Luten, Shuden, Theden, Reochen, Orden, Hepten, Chaen, Felling, Reaving, Cendling, Mourning
Months: Thaw, Equis, Caitelyn, Solace, Lannis, Reaping, Fallow, Dearth.

There are 5 events attiributed a specific date which require no deduction to place on the Aturan Calendar within the text:

1) The day Kvothe pawns his book and leaves Tarbean for Imre is "Shuden. The thirty-fifth" (Ch. 29), which we can assume is in Caitelyn given the next recorded event.

2) The day Kvothe is accepted into the University is "the forty-third of Caitelyn" (Ch. 36).

3) The day Kvothe is first brought on the horns for burning Hemme is the "fourth of Caitelyn" (Ch. 40)

4) The day Kvothe is whipped for burning Hemme is "the third of Equis" (Ch. 40).

5) The day Kvothe is again on the horns and promoted to Re'lar for calling the wind is "the fifth of Fallow" (Ch. 86).

Between events 1 and 2, 8 days pass according to the calender, however, Kvothe explicitly states that he has five days to get to the University before admissions conclude on Cendling, but Cendling is truly 8 days away from Shuden. During the passage of these days, mostly on the caravan to Imre, Rothfuss is very explicit about the passage of time; only 5 days pass, and magically we go from Shuden to Cendling. This could have been a simple oversight, but seems like something with Rothfuss' attention to detail, he would have caught.

Between events 2 and 3, we go from the 43rd of Caitelyn to the 4th of Caitelyn in "less than a span". This makes no sense unless the admissions were supposed to have occured the month previous in Equis, not Caitelyn, which is again a feasible mistake.

But! Event 4 (the whipping) takes place the day after the event 3, and is supposed to have happened on the 3rd of Equis! So if I am to believe this, Caitelyn 4 is followed directly by Equis 3, which was preceded less than a span by Caitelyn 43. Isn't Caitlyn supposed to be after Equis? These seem like major oversights, in my opinion.

Does anyone have any corrections or other evidence which may support some of this weird time passage? Thanks.
Carl Banks
79. robocarp

I think you've made a great case for silver being a special metal like iron and copper, which definitely makes the presence of third realm a nice and tidy solution. Good theory.

There is one notable place that's been mentioned that might qualify as this third realm: the Tahl. This is a good candidate because it's very likely, I'd say almost certain, that Kvothe is going to visit it in D3. (Why? Because when Wil and Sim asked him what place he'd like to visit someday, Kvothe said "Tahl". Very obvious foreshadowing.)

We don't know a lot about Tahl. It is east of the Stormwal Mountains, appears to be desert-like (at least in part), and the people are described as exotic and witch-like, and good at healing. They apparently have a small bit of commerce with Adamre. The scraelings seem to have originated on the othe side of Stormwal. I would agree that the scraelings don't seem like Fae creatures at all, so they probably did come from the third realm, which points to Tahl. (As for why the scrael are susceptible to iron: if they were originally meant to attack Fae beings, and I think they were, their creators might have allowed susceptibility to iron in exchange for other powers. Since none of the Fae carry iron, it would have been a good trade.)

The obvious problem with Tahl = third world is that it probably wouldn't be the place described as "behind doors of stone". You could say the doors of stone refer to the Stormwal Mountains, but that doesn't fit well with the stories that suggest it's the most impervious barrier there is. However, I honestly think the case for a third realm is very good even if it turns out the Doors of Stone don't refer to it. But Doors of Stone the title of the third book so they probably do refer to the third realm, so the third realm probably isn't Tahl. Damn you PR, you keep leading us in circles.

I have another reason for believing there's a third realm: my current worldview is that Ergen and Fae were allies during the Creation War. There had to be some other realm to be the enemy. But I think that's a minority opinion.
John Graham
80. JohnPoint
Vayda @76, and replies --

I like the discussion of the third realm, and also like your suggestion about silver as a special metal. One thing I'm not entirely sure about is whether the Scrael actually ARE vulnerable to iron per se. Kvothe uses a big rod of iron to kill them, true, but I always had the feeling that he's using it more for mass than for content -- the first Scrael was killed when Carter's horse fell on it, essentially crusing it. My impression is that Kvothe just needed something with enough mass to break their "shells" and a bar of iron is going to be much more massive than a club or sword.

As far as the scene where he holds the iron drab up to its claw and there is a hissing sound and the claw cracks, well, I've never been entirely sure what to make of that scene. I tend to read it as some type of stage trick or perhaps sympathy that he does in order to make everyone believe that the scrael is a demon. Remember that he wants the others to believe that it's a demon, for several reasons: 1) it will be "correctly" buried (ash, elm, deep pit, etc.), 2) it is an answer that fits their worldview and they can easily believe, 3) they then ask the blacksmith to make a bunch of iron bars, which Kvothe will need one of in order to attack the other scrael.

So, in summary, I'm not sure that the scrael is particularly sensitive to iron, so that doesn't necessarily conflict with your ideas about the third realm and silver.

TheYllist @78 --

Somewhere along the link Pat indicated that he made an error with the trip from Tarbean to the University, and he resolved it in later editions. I don't remember how he resolved it off hand (but I think he changed the day name when Kvothe leaves Tarbean), though you could likely find it relatively easily by searching google for it -- it has been mentioned in the reread at least once before.
81. TheYllest
I have found another contradiction having to do with the passage of time, related to my previous post (@78). Kvothe's first semester at the University is called "Spring Term," despite it beginning in Caitelyn, which I always imagined as Summer, given the constant association between Thaw and the beginning of Spring. Terms are two months which equates to 1/4 of the year, i.e. a typical season. His second term (and it is clear that there is no break between) is called "Fall Term", which presumably begins in Lannis if time flows normally. His third term is also called "Fall Term". Is this a situation where there are two Fall and two Spring terms? It seems like Winter and Summer are far underrepresented in these books compared to Spring and Fall, if nothing else in sheer number of mentions by name. Do the seasons work differently in the FC, i.e. short Summers and Winters? How do the months, then, align with the seasons?

JohnPoint @80

Thanks for the info. I have only just recently been turned onto the series, so I haven't completed the whole reread. I figured, as this is the most recent post, I should probably write here.
John Graham
82. JohnPoint
TheYllest @81: Here's a link to the comment about the correction: Sunday March 11, 2012 06:32am EDT

It came via the translator's forum. Pat corrected it to say "Orden. The thirty-eighth."
83. Amperage
:P New to the reread thread, so first, many thanks to Jo and everyone else for giving me something to read and ponder between books.

On the topic of Bast and "his master"... just throwing it out there, but perhaps the important part is the possessive "his", as Bast expressing a proprietary interest in Kvothe as "his" master namer or master arcanist.

Bast has rings of horn and leather. If these rings were given to him, then they show that at least one person feels they owe Bast a service, and that another (or the same) feels rather peeved at him. Perhaps they were rings given sarcastically by Kvothe, who both owes Bast service (teaching) and views Bast with enmity as a result (because it's one more thing tying him to the Kvothe he used to be).

Somewhat off the topic of this particular thread (I was too late to contribute to the threads where this would be on topic) ...
Has anyone reviewed the "faux latin" phrases with an eye to clever anagrams?

Looking at the Imaginary Linguistics Wiki, we have

1. En Temerant Voistra
2. En Faeant Morie
3. Regim Ignaul Neratum
4. vautium Tegnostae
5. Vorfelan Rhinata Morie
6. Ivare Enim Euge
7. Celum Tinture

All of these except Celum Tinure have the letters of "name" in them.

Really stretching those as anagrams, we have:
1. A Namer is Never Tott (what Elodin is really trying to say?)
2. In Fae to Rename?
3. I've got nothing sensible, though there are the letters for some very relevant words in here.
4. Tut us to give a name (hrm.. this one isn't very convincing. )
5. hrm, something about "name a ravel" or "for a hint"??
6. I give u ere name (I give you our name?)
7. Mule Tincture (lol!... this one needs work)

Sigh, I think I need a stay in the Rookery after this.
Anna Garces
84. Bannanashake
Tarcanus, I wonder if K got his Kingkiller title from killing Bast's father who as you pointed out is a prince in the fae realm. Maybe he then bound Bast to him to keep him from exacting revenge?
Jo Walton
85. bluejo
Bananashake: It's not impossible, but it's unlikely, because he's known as Kingslayer in the Four Corners where people don't know or care much about Fae. Also, it seems to me that in the dynamic between him and Bast, Bast is doing more for Kvothe than he "should" -- the milk, the lullaby. And then there's what Bast's doing against what K wants -- sending out hints that lured Chronicler, hiring the soldiers and so on. Bast has an agenda, I think, and we do not know much more than the first note of it.
Gerd K
86. Kah-thurak
Also, we are probably not wise enough to fear him as he should be feared ;-)
thistle pong
87. thistlepong

JohnPoint noted the resolution from the translator's forum regarding the incorrect dates between Tarbean and Imre. Given that, despite my own febrile desire, I'd err on the side of caution and call the proximal dates mistakes as well. Or "artifacts," as Pat would say.

The order of events would be:
Mourning (44)
First Class (1) (Solace)
Next Class, Called on the Horns (2)
Whipped (3)

I'd imagine the terms are similarly in error.

The terms should be

Equis/Caitelyn; Spring term
Solace/Lannis: Summer term
Reaping/Fallow: Fall term
Dearth/Thaw: Winter term

Spring, Fall, and Winter terms are called by name. Summer term is present in description if nothing else. Still, your posts are remarkable for their comprehensive taxonomy. It definitely bears closer examination. Thank you.

I'd urge you to write Pat and ask for confirmation. He has a history of answering little quibbles like these from time to time.
88. TheYllest

Thanks for the input. I have queried Mr. Rothfuss about these issues as you suggested, however I doubt whether I should expect to hear anything very soon.

I do, however, find your defintions of the months problematic for the simple fact that the word thaw is in 3 out of 4 instances preceded or associated with Spring (i.e. Spring Thaw). This would mean that Thaw, marking the beginning of Spring, begins the calendar year as well, which is historically a time of rebirth and new beginnings (i.e. new year), if not on the Gregorian Calendar.

We will see if The Beard has anything to say on the matter.
thistle pong
89. thistlepong
Looking at it all again, it seems like he should be admitted at the end of Thaw. The whipping and the third term, calling the wind and the narrative ending around the first snowfall fall into place. As you pointed out, the terms are already misnamed, but spring, summer, fall makes sense in context.

On the other hand, it's messed up enough that it could just be Pat foregrounding unreliability for careful readers like you. Mostly I'm embarassed I got stuck on the 5 days/8 days thing and never realized how garbled this was. So thanks, again.

In the Timeline thread I noted that the time that passes between his troupe's massacre (or Abenthy's departure) and Tarbean is also poorly accounted for and that hasn't been resolved, either.
90. TheYllest
Everything lines up if you use your definition of the seasons, change his entrance month to Thaw 43, and change his "on the horns" hearing to Equis 2 (instead of Caitelyn 4). This, however doesn't change the fact, that we essentially lose his first summer at the University, skipping straight to Fall Term.

If we instead look back to the trip from Tarbean to Imre for clues, we see that they were concerned it might rain, and were unconcerned with cold or snow. The most revealing evidence comes from K's description of the weather ("Outside was the warm quiet of a windless Spring night") on the night he and Denna went on the walk to the pond while caravanning.

This suggests to me that it is already well into Spring, and his first term at the University should be Summer. That means the given entrance date (Caitelyn 43) is correct, but the hearing and whipping dates should be revised to Solace 2,3. Then the subsequent Fall Term is also correct.

I believe there is sufficient evidence to surmise that Rothfuss wrote it two different ways (Spring & Summer), blended the two drafts during rewrites and overlooked some of the specifics during final editing, or didn't think it was important enough to the story to spend time revising.
Kyle Litke
91. Kylelitke
This is terribly outdated I'm sure, but I just noticed this on my reread and didn't notice it mentioned in the applicable section.

In Wise Man's Fear, in Chapter 47 (the interlude where Kvothe starts making up stories about Chronicler):
"And more important, he knows Chronicler can't control you if you have your name hidden away somewhere safe. The high king's name is written in a book of glass, hidden in a box of copper. And that box is locked away in a great iron chest where nobody can touch it."
So, if Kvothe does indeed have his name (or part of his name) locked into the chest by his bed...does that then suggest that he's doing it to avoid being controlled?

This could, of course, be meaningless, but considering the speculation about Kvothe having his name locked away, this jumped out at me on the reread.
Jo Walton
92. bluejo
Just wanted to draw people's attention to Pat's Kickstarter for NW playing cards. It looks pretty cool, and they're planning to do WMF cards too. There are also cool extra things including copper jots. I've signed up for a pack of cards, and I thought there might be others here who wanted to. Tomorrow's the last day, so go now if you're interested.
93. DrFood
In case folks haven't checked out the Kickstarter, you all should know that there are several hours long Google hangouts that mostly consist of Pat and Shane, the artist, working together on portraits of major characters. There is a lot of information to be had here, because Shane has a lot of questions about the characters while he is drawing them.
thistle pong
94. thistlepong
Pat posted a blog this morning as a final push for the project. Albino Dragon, the two man outfit designing the deck, has pledged 5% of the company (not just the proceeds of this one project) to Worldbuilders. If the project hits $500,000, they'll increase that to 10%. A little over $30k to go.
95. Little Tinker
I have a thought. Someone may have had this thought before me... If so, great minds think alike!
So Netalia Lackless is the heir to the Lackless estates. She runs off with the Rue and her family disowns her.
Assuming we are right about Netalia being Kvothe's mother, then Kvothe would be the true heir (in blood at least). Which brings me to this:

“how can a family thrive when the eldest heir forsakes all family duty?" From the genealogies book Kvothe is given by Caudicus.

The lacklesses are unlucky, lots of misfortunes over the past thousand years or so and it is implied that at least one previous heir has been neglecting family duty. Why?
Bit of a stretch but... Off being amyr? Maybe it's a tradition that the eldest has always followed? Or every few generations a new amyr/ciridae is 'born'?
This fits with the idea that Kvothe is predestined to be an amyr as well as with the earlier Ruache (Rue?) reincarnation idea. Might also explain why Haliax sensed the Amyr's presence when cinder was about to kill Kvothe and why cinder heard Martin praying and/or sensed Amyr presence before he disappeared from the bandit camp.
It would also be a nice way for the maer to lead Kvothe right to the doors of the Amyr as predicted by the cthae.
So if the Lackless door in the rhyme is a door of the Amyr, maybe this is the door that Iax is trapped behind. Or maybe I am well off the mark and rambling!
Any thoughts?
John Graham
96. JohnPoint
Amperage @83 --
On the topic of Bast and "his master"... just throwing it out there, but perhaps the important part is the possessive "his", as Bast expressing a proprietary interest in Kvothe as "his" master namer or master arcanist.
I like this. It's a creative twist to the otherwise obvious emphasis, and we know that Pat likes creative twists and hiding details in plain sight.
Steven Halter
97. stevenhalter
JohnPoint@96:I kind of like the idea of Bast thinking of Kvothe as a pet of some sort. He wants to fix his pet.
98. TheYllest
New (or old) thoughts on the Loeclos box, Iax, the Chandrian, and Kvothe:

Let’s assume for the moment that the tinker in Hespe’s story represents the Cthaeh which sets Jax on the path to capturing a piece of the moon and sparking the Creation War. Through his interaction with the tinker, Jax came into possession of the three packs, a walking stick, and a hat. The first and second packs have some interesting items but nothing incredibly significant that I can see, but he cannot open the third pack because "the knot too much for ". This is a subtle hint that the third pack is actually the Loeclos box which is engraved with Yllish story knots and is historically difficult to open. When Jax meets the old hermit in the cave, representative of the Knowers (perhaps Teccam), the man is able to open the pack by listening to it and speaking its name. The pack contains three items (plus the spectacles which he already received from the tinker/Cthaeh).

*The Spectacles: used to see the moon and stars, represent the power to See (E'lir, Knowing)

*The Stone Flute: used to call the name of nightjars and the moon, represents the power to Speak (Re'lar, Naming)

*The Bent Piece of Wood: used to build the Faen Realm, represents the power to Create (El'the, Shaping)
**I am speculating here that the highest level at the University (El’the) means Creator or shaper which gives interesting context to Vorfelen Rhinata Morie. Further support for this can be found in the Wikipedia article for “El (diety)” which literally means creator, and we all know PR’s pension for including little language hints. Also in the article we can see “Aleph” and “Il” (Yll) mentioned by name.

*The Iron Box: used to store a piece of the moon's name, represents a heretofore unnamed power to Change names (Cthaeh or C’theah, Changing)
**We know that this fourth ability exists based on Elodin's reaction to Kvothe's inquiries about renaming, but we can also assume that it is very powerful and dangerous. It is noteworthy that this power has no place in the University ranking system. The idea that Cthaeh or C’theah could be this rank is pure speculation, but would mean that the Cthaeh is not an entity, rather an ability.

All that being said, I believe these items to be symbolic of the power held within the Loeclos Box: the abilities to See, Speak, Create, and Change. Whatever is truly in there will give the opener these abilities, perhaps becoming another Cthaeh. That being the case, it makes sense how the Cthaeh can so clearly see how events unfold: he would change the names of those who came to him in such a way that they are destined to follow the path for which he names them (Jax->Iax, Lanre->Haliax, The Chandrian, etc.). Whether or not he is the original Cthaeh, I believe Iax is the Cthaeh we have come to know as existing in the Rhinna Tree in the Fae, that being his only way of interacting with the world from behind the Door of Stone. His ultimate plan being to destroy the world of the Four Corners so that the moon has only one sky in which to live, the Fae, so they can be together always (e.g. sending Lanre and the other Chandrian to destroy the world as Haliax). This would mean that the Chandrian (Rhinta) are all the people who have come to speak to the Cthaeh and have been so renamed to continue his work of destroying the 4C world, in doing so being marked with their particular affliction.

Given that he was the owner and keeper of the Loeclos box, let’s now say that Iax was the first Lockless. He has a true knack for being unlucky and breaking things, as told by Hespe, which according to Caudicus continues to plague their family today. He also has “changing eyes” according to Felurian’s story which becomes significant when you begin to think of Kvothe as the Lackless heir, being the son of Meluan Lackless. Kvothe has changing eyes, and while not unlucky in the story, he holds “Be Wary of Folly” as his motto in the frame, meaning he most likely came into some bad luck, mistakes, or broke something (An Eld Vintish line). Wouldn’t it be strange if “Be Wary of Folly” were actually the Lackless House saying, given their knack for bad luck? That would mean that Abenthy knew Kvothe’s mother was a Lackless when he wrote it in the inscription of his book as a kind of warning. Kvothe also manages to follow in his ancestors footsteps fairly well as he has no parents (from a broken home), chases the moon (assuming Denna), speaks to the Cthaeh, and presumably changes his own name (Kote).

*Tinker’s Third Pack = Loeclos Box
*Items in the third pack represent different naming powers which will be given to the opener.
*Iax is the Cthaeh we know, but not the only Cthaeh as it is an ability, not a name.
*Iax’s goal is to use his name changing powers to control people and destroy the 4C world, forcing the moon entirely into the Fae.
*Iax is the first Lockless and Kvothe is following closely in his footsteps.

That was kind of rambly, but I think there are some interesting takeaways and theories there. Feel free to expand or shoot holes all through that, I welcome discussion.
Steven Halter
99. stevenhalter
I'm not sure if the Tinker's Third Pack is necessarily the same exact box as the Loeclos box, but I do like the idea that they are the same sort of thing and the knotwork is the Yllish design.
Iax as the Cthaeh as being the only way to contact past the Doors of Stone is interesting and has attractions, but I think I will stay in the Cthaeh as a separate being camp for now.
Iax's goal seems (to me) to be to do whatever he wants--reshaping things as his will demands.
100. TheYllest
It seems to me the Iax's goal was always to have the moon to keep as his own, hence my idea that he is the driving force (as the Cthaeh) in trying to destroy the 4C world. Did he ever have any other motivation that we know of? Why would his goal be to arbitrarily shape things as he sees fit? That doesn't make any sense or add to his character; it makes him senseless, and a senseless bad guy is bad writing. And a bad writer, PR is not.

That is not to say that I am necessarily right in my theory here, but I hardly think he is without motivation except to "do whatever he wants".
Steven Halter
101. stevenhalter
@100:That is essentially how Felurian describes the Shapers. They kept pushing the boundaries of what could be done. Moving the moon was the final straw. Hubris applied to the extreme is a fine motivation.
Note that I'm not saying you are wrong, just that I am not convinced.
Carl Banks
102. robocarp

I never connected the knot on the third bag to the Yllish knots myself, yet it seems so obvious in retrospect. Good job spotting that. I like a most of what you said there, but I echo stevenhalter's skepticism about the Cthaeh = Iax. For me, one issue is that the Cthaeh hasn't demonstrated any power to Shape or Create, and to Change a name is only a possibility. Also, Felurian says the one who stole the moon is sealed behind Doors of Stone, implying that this is a relatively safe place (though not safe enough to call names), which doesn't agree with the Cthaeh's situation at all.
103. andrew07
Hi guys, I haven't posted before but I've been following this from the beginning.

A thought occurred to me this morning- about a potential way to open either the Lockless box or Kvothe's thrice locked chest.

Correct me if it's been said before, but I think a loden stone might be a sort of key, maybe at least one of the many countermeasures securing one of the boxes.

This method would effectively hide the lock within the wood, so when you pass over the stone it trips a locking mechanism. It occurred to me that loden stones haven't been used that much except for the Draccus fight, but they have been talked about a suspicious amount, an the fact that they are rare is quite emphasised.

It just seems like a hint of foreshadowing. Not many people would have one, so it's not like people passing magnets over the box is something that would happened by chance. Also, didn't he give it to Denna? Maybe his way of ensuring someone he cares about possesses the key, if he remembers how to open it of course...

What do you guys think, a possible tiny theory?
104. TheYllest

Thanks for the feedback. I agree that it is a bit of a stretch to say Iax is the Cthaeh, but it seemed to fit well into how I view its hidden motivation, namely destroying the 4C world. I do, however, have to disagree with your statement that the Cthaeh is not a namer. While he hasn't directly demonstrated this ability, he says, "I am Cthaeh. I am. I see. I know...At times I speak," which seems like as direct a statement that can be made saying he has the power of names.
105. TheYllest

This is a very clever idea and solution to the Loeclos box which has been well established with foreshadowing if it were the case. The only problem I see with this idea is that it is rather anticlimactic for a box that hasn't been opened for 3000 years. Has no one thought of trying that in all this time? It is a very novel guess, but I somehow doubt it because it lacks a certain mystique. I have a feeling naming/shaping will be involved. In my post above @98, I make an argument that the tinker's third pack from the Jax story is the Loeclos box which is opened with some form of naming and/or Yllish knot magic.
Carl Banks
106. robocarp

Ah, but I didn't say the Cthaeh wasn't a namer, in fact I would guess it's the most powerful namer we've met so far, and maybe ever. But that power is only in Seeing names, not calling them (the other powers you list).

However, as you say, the Ctheah does say it sometimes speaks. If it's talking about naming, maybe it does have those powers.

But a minor correction. The spectacles were not found in the third bag: the tinker explicitly says there are only three items in the third bag. Jax notices the spectacles before the tinker opened it. They might have been in the second bag, on the tinker's nose, or just laying around. I'd guess the distinction is between Knowing and Shaping here: the spectacles symbolized knowing magic so they were accessible, whereas the items in the bag symbolized shaping magic so were hidden. The tinker never opened the third bag so never had the power of shaping, so if we identify the tinker with the Cthaeh, that would be symbolic of why the Cthaeh doesn't do shaping magic. Assuming it doesn't.
Patrick Stultz
107. Audion
The problems I have with the Cthaeh being more than what was presented to us is Bast's reaction to Kvothe's ignrance on the subject. I think K found all his answers and we know he's re-telling the story from the view point of incorperating all the important bits.
Now he could just be playing an extrodinary game, but I don't think so. I think the Cth is just an ancient "evil" creature who likes to set people on a nice path of destruction and pre-dates everything else out there. Whatever abilities it has are interesting, but moot when it comes to "who" it is or was imo.
108. TheYllest

Nice catch with the spectacles. I had read it wrong intially. Without remembering the tinker says there are three things, it seems like the spectacles could have been in the bag from how it is presented, but I have to agree with your interpretation. One problem though, how would the tinker know there were three things, or that they were valuable, in the third pack if he himself had never opened it? This could just be a factor of how the story is told, but if he knows what is in the pack, it would make sense that he has opened it before and unlocked that power. Do we know if you can know/see something without physically seeing it? Do we have any precedant for name calling without some form of sensual feedback?

I still think it is a very elegeant solution that the Cthaeh knows/sees the future by setting his 'puppets' on their path by shaping their names to do his will. There is no direct evidence for this save for the circumstantial idea that both Jax and Lanre's names changed at some point between their interaction with the Cthaeh and the next time we hear of them in the Creation War narrative.
Carl Banks
109. robocarp

Don't know, at some point you can get carried away with symbolism. I'm not sure the tinker even represents the Cthaeh, so this might have nothing to do with anything. But my read on it would be that the Ctheah knows about shaping powers, but for whatever reason doesn't use them.

Also, I kind of doubt that Jax's name was changed to become Iax. Hespe's story is an old oral story with a lot of details changed, and I think Jax is just a munged version of Iax.
Andrew Loyd
110. DoYouHas
I'm pretty curious about Aleph. He is mentioned in both of Skarpi's stories and it seems to be a little different in both. In the first one Aleph is described as a peer of Selitos. As one of the few that could match Selitos' skill in naming. In the second story he becomes more like a god, creating angels. He clearly is a shaper if the creating of the angels(singers) happens the way Skarpi describes, but he isn't part of the shaper's side of the creation war.

Kvothe claims in his resume at the beginning of the narrative that he has talked to gods. The only 2 characters that I read as 'gods' in the first two books are Tehlu and Aleph. It is possible that all of the angels could fit with this boast, but I'm leaning towards Kvothe having a conversation with Tehlu at some point in D3.
Jason Hudson
112. Pykus
Here are some repeating phrases I've been pondering the significance of...


(WMF:40 Re:Puppet) When his face emerged from the hood he was grinning like a child

playing dress-up in his parents' clothes.

(WMF:99 Felurian) "There were never any human amyr," she said, dismissing the idea out of

hand. "those you speak of sound like children dressing in their parents' clothes."


(NoW:28 Scarpi) Deah, who had lost two husbands to the fighting, and whose face and mouth

and heart were hard and cold as stone.

(WMF:77 Marten) "He went on for an hour, and you wouldn't have recognized the woman he was

describing as our hard-eyed Hespe. He practically sang about her." He sighed. "He thinks

she's too good for him. And he's convinced if he so much as looked at her sideways he'd end

up with his arm broken in three places."


(WMF:102 Felurian) "No calling of names here. I will not speak of that one, though he is

shut beyond the doors of stone." ... "This shaper of the dark and changing eye stretched out

his hand against the pure black sky. he pulled the moon, but could not make her stay. so now

she moves 'twixt mortal and the fae."

(WMF:102 Saicere's Atas) "Next came Finol of the clear and shining eye," I repeated

attentively. "Much beloved of Dulcen. She herself slew two daruna, then was killed by

gremmen at the Drossen Tor."


(WMF:83 Marten's story of Taborlin) Scyphus knew if Taborlin swore to help him, the wizard

would abide by his promise, because Taborlin never broke his word.
"Then Taborlin said, 'If you're so brave, give me my staff before we duel.'
" 'Certainly,' Scyphus said, even though he didn't really mean to give it back, you see.

'It's right next to you in that chest there.' "
Marten looked around at us conspiratorially. "You see, Scyphus knew the chest was locked and

had only one key. And that key was right in his pocket. So Taborlin went over to the chest,

but it was locked. Then Scyphus laughed and so did a few of the guards.
"That made Taborlin angry. And before any of them could do anything he struck the top of the

chest with his hand and shouted, 'Edro!' The chest sprung open and he grabbed his cloak of

no particular color, wrapping it around himself."
He called forth great barbs of lightning and killed twenty guards. Then he called forth a

sheet of fire and killed another twenty. Those that were left threw down their swords and

cried for mercy.
"Then Taborlin gathered up the rest of his things from the chest. He took out his key and

coin and tucked them safe away. Lastly he brought out his copper sword, Skyaldrin, and


(WMF:151 Kvothe tries to open his Thrice-Locked Chest) Brushing away a coating of dust and

spiderwebs, he opened the box. Inside lay a key of dark iron and a key of bright copper.

Kvothe knelt in front of the chest again and fit the copper key into the iron lock. With

slow precision he turned it: left, then right, then left again, listening carefully to the

faint clicks of some mechanism inside.
Then he lifted the iron key and fit it into the copper plate. This key he did not turn. He

slid it deep into the lock, brought it halfway out, then pushed it back before drawing it

free in a smooth, quick motion.
After replacing the keys in their box, he put his hands back on the sides of the lid in the

same position as before. "Open," he said under his breath. "Open, damn you. Edro."
He lifted, his back and shoulders tensing with the effort of it.
The lid of the chest didn't budge. Kvothe gave a long sigh and leaned forward until his

forehead pressed against the cool dark wood. As the air rushed out of him, his shoulders

sagged, leaving him looking small and wounded, terribly tired and older than his years.
His expression, however, showed no surprise, no grief. It was merely resigned. It was the

expression of a man who has finally received bad news he'd already known was on the way.


(WMF:111 Deoch talking about Denna) "Is it any surprise then that she is harder to lay

hands on than a windblown leaf?"

(WMF:109 Kvothe) "Unless falling is what the Lethani requires," I said without thinking.

My head still felt light as a windblown leaf.

(WMF:111 Kvothe and Shehyn) "Who knows the Lethani?" Shehyn asked.
"The windblown leaf," I responded, though I cannot honestly say what I meant by it.


(NoW:37 Simmon talking about Master Lorren) "Chilly?" Simmon asked. "Distant? Like an

unblinking pillar of stone?" He laughed. "Lorren is always like that. Rumor has it that Elxa

Dal has a standing offer of ten gold marks to anyone who can make him laugh."

(WMF:111 Kvothe and Shehyn) "Where does the Lethani come from?" "The same place as


(WMF:105 Bast) "It's just that you know so many things," Bast said. "You know all sorts of

things you're not supposed to. You know about the Berentaltha. You know about the white

sisters and the laughing-way. How can you not know about the Cthaeh? It's ... it's a


(WMF:125 Vashet) Holding the sword, Vashet turned to Shehyn. "This is the one for him,"

she said. And for the first time since I'd known my teacher, it was as if all the laughing

had been pressed out of her. Her voice was thin and dry. Shehyn nodded. "I agree. You have

done well to find it."


(NoW:41 Wilem) He shook his head. "No. Sheyem." He stressed the word, and brought his

hands even with each other.
"Oh," I mimicked the gesture. "Balanced."
He nodded. "You work until your debt is balanced with the Medica."

(WMF:125 Shehyn) "You are beautiful, Shehyn. For in you is the stone of the wall, the

water of the stream, and the motion of the tree in one."
Shehyn blinked, and in her moment of surprise I found myself firmly gripping her shoulder

and arm. I made Thunder Upward, but instead of being thrown, Shehyn stood still and solid as

a stone.
Jason Hudson
113. Pykus
Something else has occurred to me about the Adem.

The fact that Andan's face is a mask with burning eyes, and that the Adem wear a mask of impassivity seems like more than mere coincidence. I have begun to wonder if the Adem had their origin somehow shaped by Andan.

It also seems like the mask of impassivity is meant to be a defense against namers and/or shapers.

I think that if one were going to war against a group that had the potential to exert the kind of control over you that Kvothe had ove Felurian, one would go to any lengths to prevent that from happening. At one point Penthe said something about growing up with fa,ily and knowing everything inside of them because every motion of their face revealed much. (something along those lines anyway). If the display of emotions on ones face revealed ones identity, that would be a dangerous thing, akin to telling someone your real name.

It might also make more sense if the Adem were the "deep" knowers that felurian talked about. I'm not convinced of this entirely, but for those that know so deeply, the mask of impassivity would be the only way to prevent every interaction from being too intimate, like what would happen if you could hear the thoughts of everyone you spoke to.

Lastly, I also noticed that when asked what flower she would bring to Kvothe, Denna said "a willow blossom", and that the Cthaeh's tree "resembled a vast spreading willow". I'm going a little crazy wondering on the significance of that.

114. TheYllest

Aleph has interested me as well for quite sometime because, as the supposed creator of all things, he gets very little page time compared to his contemprary, Tehlu.

K appears to consider Aleph the creator of the world, which by itself would make him a 'shaper' of sorts. He also posses the ability to assign and/or change names, which I suppose is a form of shaping, given that he "gave everything a name" (later qualified to be only one version of the story), and shaped Tehlu and others into Angels/Singers.

According to Skarpi, Aleph is one of four master namers whom Selitos viewed as capable as he was (Selitos, Aleph, Iax, and Lyra). We cannot discern from the story however whether Aleph is more powerful or only equally powerful to Selitos, but given that in Skarpi's second story (continuation of the first), Selitos refers to Aleph as "Lord", which gives me the impression that Aleph is actually more powerful, not equal. Aleph asks Selitos to "leave this world behind" to better "serve him," which he refuses, in doing so creating the Amyr (comprised of Ruach followers of Selitos). Tehlu steps forward, who was as of yet unmentioned in Skarpi's stories, and volunteers to Aleph's request since Selitos refused. Therefore, Tehlu is a disciple/follower/student/contemporary of Aleph, according to Skarpi, which gets him arrested by the Tehlin Church.

Now I ask, why then were the Angels even created if it was not to capture Haliax and the Chandrian, as this is the stated goal of Selitos who stands apart from Aleph. The only hint we get is from Aleph's single attributed quote in the series, "All personal things must be set aside, and you must punish or reward only what you yourself witness from this day forth,” in response to Selitos' request to avenge Myr Tariniel, which he refuses. I have no idea the motivation for this if not to payback those who destroyed the Ergen Empire. The only thing I can glean from this is that the Amyr and the Aleph/Angels stand apart on a very serious issue which likely puts them at odds. Given that he is a shaper and his inaction against the Shapers' destruction of Myr Tariniel, perhaps Aleph was on the Shapers' side of the Creation War. Added to this is that fact that Kvothe had to kill an Angel, who follow Aleph, to get what he desired, which is likely to kill a Chandrian. Perhaps the Angels are protectors of those who have been influenced by the Cthaeh (i.e. the Sithe).

We also know PR has a tendency to incorporate ancient mythologies from around the world into his name to give hints as to their function. 'Aleph' is the first letter of the Hebrew and Arabic alphabet and holds mysterious or mystic powers, such as to bring inanimate objects to life (shaping?). El is another form of the letter aleph, which is the name of the creator God in several ancient cultures, and also the beginning of the 'El'the' title, which I surmise to mean Creator (shaper).

Reading back through that, there are truly too many possibilities to explore due to lack of textual evidence. Everything we surmise about Aleph is really a stretch except that he is likely the creator God of the 4C, similar to Iax and the Fae. Other than that, it is all speculation.
Patrick Stultz
115. Audion
@ 114 - When Selitos mentioned Aleph as "Lord" I assumed it ment superior in a rank structure, not in a personal power structure. Much like a swordman being beholden to a Lord, it doesn't mean the Lord is better with weapons, just that the guy works for him.
Everything else I like the reasoning on, I don't fully agree but as you say it's hard to back everything up with textual evidence.
116. Little Tinker
Re: Iax as the Cthae
The timeline just doesn't fit for me. Bast says that Iax spoke to the Cthae before he stole the moon. I much prefer the idea that Encanis is the Cthae, trapped by tehlu as the truth behind Trapis's story.
Also, I am convinced that the loeclos box is made out of wood from the Cthae's tree. The descriptions are just so similar. I also think that there is no lock and that the wood was 'shaped' by a namer, just like Fela's stone ring. The copper running through the wood reminds me of the copper in the stone walls of Elodin's cell. Protection against a namer 'Unshaping/opening' it?
117. TheYllest
If you want to say the Cthaeh is Encanis, that timline is dubious at best. According to Trapis (who isn't all that reliable a storyteller), Tehlu destroyed Encanis sometime between 400 and 1000 years ago, while the Creation War happened thousands of years before that. If we disregard Tapis' timeline, we still have the problem Tehlu was not annointed as an Angel until after the destruction of Myr Tariniel which was part of the Creation War, which was incited by the trapping of the moon's name by Iax, which was itself preceded by Iax speaking to the Cthaeh (e.g. the Cthaeh existed even before Tehlu trapped Encanis, at least according to Skarpi's timeline).

I am also now becoming dubious on Iax as the Cthaeh, but I don't like the idea that it is just some malevolent being running the world from a tree in the Faerie world. It's motivations seemed to align with those of Iax, and that is my main support of the theory, which is really not enough to stand on. We need more concrete info.

I agree with your assertion that the Loeclos box is made from the wood of the Rhinna tree to which the Cthaeh is confined. The copper and iron combination seen throughout the series makes perfect sense in that world if those are the two elements which can keep out Fae and namers.
Andrew Loyd
118. DoYouHas
@TheYllest-114: You bring up two interesting points.

1. "Now I ask, why then were the Angels even created if it was not to capture Haliax and the Chandrian, as this is the stated goal of Selitos who stands apart from Aleph."

Similar to the Chandrian, we know almost nothing about the Angel's purpose. It is pretty intentionally blanked out of the narrative by having Kvothe come late to Skarpi's second story.

2. "Perhaps the Angels are protectors of those who have been influenced by the Cthaeh (i.e. the Sithe)."

I think that the angels are 'the singers' from Haliax's statement, "Who keeps you safe from the Amyr? The singers? The Sithe? From all that would harm you in the world?"

For a long time I thought that the singers were the musicians like Arliden who torment the Chandrian by putting their story to song. This seemed supported by 'singers' not being capitalized in the list and that Selitos cursed Lanre and all that follow him by turning their names against them. This is a decent theory and would explain a good chunk of why the Chandrian try to destroy information about themselves.

However, there is a parallel between Skarpi's story about the Angels and Kvothe's experience with Felurian that makes me lean towards the Angels being the singers.

"the were wreathed in a white fire. ... The fire flickered in their eyes and they saw into the deepest hearts of men. The fire fillled their mouths and they sang songs of power. Then the fire settled on their foreheads like silver stars and they became at once righteous and wise and terrible to behold."

"Her eyes were like four lines of music, clearly penned. My mind was filled with the sudden song of her. I drew a breath and sang it out in four hard notes. ... She met my eyes, and in the twilightwritten there I saw again the four clear lines of song. I sang them out. They burst from me like birds into the open air. ... Felurian gave a startled cry and sat so suddenly that it was almost like a fall. She curled her knees toward herself and huddled, watching me with wide and frightened eyes. ... It billowed out, engulfing her, then burst into a sliver flame that trapped her tight inside its changing name. ... I knew then that I could kill her. But the thought sickened me, and I was reminded of ripping the wings from a butterfly. Killing her would be destroying something strange and wonderful. A world without Felurian was a poorer world. ...I saw myself reflected in her eyes, naked among the cushions. My power rode like a white star on my brow."

There is just a tremendous amount that is the same here. Kvothe sings a song of power, the song of Felurian, he doesn't see her name like he sees the wind, his mind is filled with the song of her. He has a white(silver) star on his brow that displays his power. He shows sudden wisdom in how he realizes that a world without Felurian is a poorer world. Felurian looks at him with fear (terrible to behold). There is even the presence of silver(white) flame during the whole thing.

Think about the one thing we do know about the angel's purpose. They are out there to punish and reward according to what they witness. The Chandrian have been slaughtering and destroying things for quite a long time. Even if the Chandrian are not their only focus, like the Amyr, it makes sense that the Angels would be after the Chandrian anyways. This fits with Marten praying and Cinder looking to the sky and fleeing.

I really like this idea that Kvothe's power and nature is being torn between the Chandrian, the Amyr, and the angels(singers). There have already been lots of comments about how Kvothe is wearing an Amyr t-shirt. But then there is the parallels I pointed out earlier that show that his true power may be more like the angels. And lastly you have Chroniclers comment about how Kvothe is a myth or a new Chandrian and Kvothe responds with, "The important people know the difference." It could simply be that Kvothe is the chosen lackless heir that everyone has been waiting for and he is also an angel reborn. But I am really holding out hope that he isn't a 'chosen one' character. Instead, I hope that Kvothe is more an incredibly exceptional regular person that meddles with ancient powers, gets caught between three factions, and gets chewed up and spat out because of it.

Unrelated note: There is a good chance that Kvothe doesn't even have Caesura anymore. The Adem required him to make arrangements to return the sword when he dies. He faked his death. There is a good chance that part of that deception required sending Caesura back to the Adem.
Nicola Addy
119. LittleTinker
Just to clarify, I guess this would mean Iax and Lanre talking to Encanis, well before he was trapped in the tree by Tehlu. The box would also have been wrought before the Ctheae was trapped in it.
As an afterthought, the copper and iron content of the tree would make it a great place to trap a 'demon'. Tehlu was missioned with punishing only those crimes that occurred after he became an angel, but Encanis had been around since long before Menda/Tehlu was born.
Trapis's story is doubtless transformed/embellished by both re-telling and the propaganda on the church.
Encanis as the original enemy?
Carl Banks
120. robocarp
...but he isn't part of the shaper's side of the
creation war.
Given that he is a shaper and his inaction against the Shapers' destruction of Myr Tariniel...
Unless you guys have evidence I don't know of (and I've love to see it if you do), we don't know which side Selitos and the Ergen Empire were on. We don't even know if Knowers vs Shapers even mattered in the late stages of the war. We don't even know who all the belligerents are.

The main evidence for Ergen being on the Knowers' side is that Selitos seems to be more of a Knower. (I think many people assume Ergen is on the Knowers' side because the Shapers come off as the "bad guys", but that's not evidence, it's an assumption.)

The main evidence in favor of Ergen being on the Shapers' side is that they are clearly defenders in the war, yet Felurian strongly implies that the Knowers were the aggressors.

Point is, we don't know, and I'll bet at least of some your questions might be less puzzling if you assume Ergen is on the Shapers' side.
121. aethel
Hey folks,

I attended several of PR's seminar's at Origins. In particular, there was one line of his answers that provided information I haven't seen anywhere else. In case any of this is new info, I wanted to share it (as well as write it down before it all slips my mind). I'm already a slightly unreliable narrator since this is all from memory, but here goes (this is all paraphrase of things he said):

Pat added ~60K words about Kvothe's time in Ademre during his rewrite of book 2. He was excited for a chance to show parts of his world that aren't the "Faux-medieval" commonwealth. People make a lot of assumptions about his world and the Commonwealth because they see trappings that look familiar from other fantasy worlds, so they assume his setting is the same.

The history behind the commonwealth's culture is really like "if the Romans had done it right." When Atur conquered everything, they made sure that the only way to get legal protection was to speak Aturan. All laws and legal proceedings were in Aturan. (He made some comparison to Normandy and why in the real world so many legal terms are French.) He also made a comment about Tehlinism taking over because when the Atur conquered everything "They cut down your god tree." Then when the Aturan Empire finally did fall, your ancestors' religion and language had been dead for generations, so its not like anyone had any incentive to go back to them.

If you find this useful, I'll try to keep an ear peeled for similar tidbits at Gen Con.
Sahi Rioth
122. Sahirioth
Re: Aethel @ 121
parts of his world that aren't the "Faux-medieval" commonwealth
I've always wondered in what 'age' readers assume the KKC to be set. I get the feeling that it's medieval-ish, but I have seen quite a bit of comments and fan art that assume more of a late renaissance equivalent (1550-1600 or so) or even late 18th to early 19th century. I'd like to know what impression you guys had, and why. Perhaps you can even find some textual evidence to support your claims - I sure can't remember anything to give solid grounds to the way I visualize the 4C.
123. Jayray
Has anyone speculated about the Jackis line being related to Jax (Iax) in the stealing of the moon story?
124. Jayray
Additionally to those thinkgin Jax's name was actually changed, i dont think he changed his true name. It seems more that JaxIax is just a matter of the story being translated into differnt languages over thousands of years etc.

For example, IRL the word "janitor" comes from the Latin derived word ianitor, which means door keeper. "J" words are commonly derived from "I" words IRL etymology.
thistle pong
125. thistlepong

Thanks. I haven’t had anyone corroborate that since WMF came out. He said much the same thing at the reading I attended. We’ve had a few discussions about, “Rome done right,” ‘cause some folks around here know quite a lot about Rome. The Imperial Tehlin Aturans came in and built a building that was essentially a Pizza Hut/Taco Bell only instead of two dubious tastes that cause IBS together it was a church/courthouse. Petitioners had to present their cases in Aturan and the best place to learn it was in church, which condemned other religions... tidy.


I just took it as generic D&D setting: faux-medieval plus anachronisms. But Pat’s addressed it here and there, mentioning that the Four Corners don’t correspond to any particular time period. He’s gone a bit further mentioning that even our ancient cultures developed technologies asymmetrically and didn’t necessarily put them to the same uses.

Laundries and salt pumps are quotidian, there’s robust international trade, giant machinery decays beneath the University. There’s hodge and podge. No firearms or internal combustion vehicles. LEDs, pyrex, and home security systems.


It has been proposed. However, while Jax and Iax tend to be the same in non-English translations, Jakis changes pretty freely, mostly so "Jackass Jackass" can still be funny.
126. Rich C
@122 Sahirioth

I personally favor a relatively late real-world-equivalent setting, like the late 18th or early 19th century, based mainly on the existence of pocket watches, which were not invented in our world until about that time (and which solved the longitude problem thereby greatly increasing long-distance trade). The Adem also seem to have readily available technology (glass windows, iron stoves with chimney pipes) which seem substantially post-medieval. Land transportation didn't really get any faster (other than having paved roads) until the railroad, so the fact that everyone is using animal power doesn't really tell us much. I don't know anyting about maritime technology, so I don't know if the sailing ships we've seen described would constrain the real-world-equivalent time. Am I right that printed reading material is pretty readily available? Kvothe describes several different interactions with printers (getting his "apology" to Ambrose printed, selling the rumor-stories before leaving Severen), but there's also a scriptorium in the Archives where students are apparently coping manuscripts by hand (more medieval). My feeling is that the availability of reading material is suffficiently widespread that it must be printed rather than hand-written, but its ambiguous.
Andrew Loyd
127. DoYouHas
@Jayray - 124: Yes, it has been supposed that Jakis and Jax are linked. Unfortunately there isn't much to go off of except for the name. It has also been supposed that Jax and his unlucky streak means that he was the founder of the Lackless family and their unlucky streak. I thought a while back Jax was Lorren (the physical description and the no laughing/smiling fits well) until I realized that was contradicted by Felurian saying Iax is behind the doors of stone. Lots of ideas, few that are really convincing so far.

@robocarp - 120:
My thought process for thinking that the Shapers were against Ergen is pretty simple.

1. 'The Enemy' of Ergen is set beyond the doors of stone after Drossen Tor.
2. Iax is locked behind the doors of stone.
3. Iax is the foremost shaper, the spark for the war. It would follow that he would be on the Shaper's side.
4. The Shapers were at least part of 'the enemy' of Ergen.

There are a few other things that are more based on interpretation that support this as well which I can bring up if you are not convinced, but this is the core of it.
John Graham
128. JohnPoint
DoYouHas @127:
I thought a while back Jax was Lorren (the physical description and the no laughing/smiling fits well) until I realized that was contradicted by Felurian saying Iax is behind the doors of stone.
Ah, but from Felurian's point of view, Lorren is (or could be) behind the doors of stone. He is located in the mortal, which could be construed as "behind the doors of stone" when you're speaking from the Fae, and he spends a lot of time in the Archives, which contains its own door of stone. Afterall, what is in front of vs behind a door depends on what side you're standing on...
Carl Banks
129. robocarp

I'm quite convinced of the opposite, in fact. That if Knowers vs. Shapers is still a thing (which I'm not at all convinced of), that Ergen is on the side of the Shapers. I have reasons, but as far as direct evidence goes, nothing much either way.

Your evidence it's based on a rather strong assumption that if any two people are said to be sealed behind stone doors, they must be the same person. It certainly could turn out to be true, but as far as evidence goes it's weak.
Ryan Murray
130. TheYllest

Here is everything I can gather about the creation war and who belonged to each side. Most of this is information which we already know or assume, but textual support goes a long way. Also, given my most recent reread, I prefer to label the two sides as Empire and Rebels given that it appears there are shapers on both sides (prevents confusion).
"those who saw a thing and thought of changing it, they were shapers. proud dreamers...but one shaper was greater than the rest...he stole the moon and with it came the war" -Felurian
"Jax brought out the black iron box, closing the lid and catching her name inside...I have mastery over you (Ludis/Moon). And I say you must stay with me forever, so I can be happy." -Hespe
Jax/Iax is the shaper who stole the moon and started the Creation War.
"Lanre and Lyra fought side by side. They defended Belen from a surprise attack...Over the long years they pressed the empire’s enemies back." -Skarpi
Lanre (a warrior) and Lyra (a namer) fought together, defending the empire.
"at Drossen Tor...Lanre brought victory to his side, but he bought it with his life...After the battle was finished and the enemy was set beyond the doors of stone" -Skarpi
Lanre and Lyra fought the empire's enemy at Drossen Tor, winning the battle and trapping him behind the doors of stone. Lanre died in the battle.
"the first and greatest of the shapers...he is shut beyond the doors of stone" -Felurian
Jax/Iax was the enemy of the empire who was shut behind the doors of stone.
"From beyond the doors of death Lanre returned" -Skarpi
"Lanre...fought, fell, and rose again. To fall again. Under shadow falling then." -Arliden
Lanre was brought back from the dead by Lyra.
"Lyra was ill. Lyra had been kidnapped. Lyra had died. Lanre had fled the empire. Lanre had gone mad. Some even said Lanre had killed himself and gone searching for his wife in the land of the dead . There were stories aplenty, but no one knew the truth of things" -Skarpi
Something happened to Lyra "years" after bringing Lanre back, forcing him to presumably make his fateful trip to speak to the Cthaeh in order to gain the power of the panacea and cure her. This is where I believe his name was changed to Haliax and he was set on his path of destruction, the Cthaeh manipulating him to destroy the Empire.
"I sing of subtle shadow spread across a land, and of the man who turned his hand toward a purpose few could bear." -Denna & Master Ash
Lanre, now Haliax, has taken on a righteous mission that was difficult but necessary, in doing so, "turn(ing) his hand" against the Empire. This is an opposing opinion to Skarpi, having come from Denna and Master Ash.
"The empire had an enemy...But the enemy was not great enough to pull it down...he moved like a worm through fruit. He poisoned seven others against the empire...Six of them betrayed the cities that trusted them." -Shehyn
Haliax is now the enemy of the empire, at least in the Adem tradition.
"Fair Lanre stripped of wife, of life, of pride still never from his purpose swayed. Who fought the tide, and fell, and was betrayed." -Denna & Master Ash
The Cthaeh convinced Lanre he was betrayed, and that his purpose should be to destroy the empire, who he believes took Lyra from him, perhaps for bringing him back to life using shaping.
"He saw in Lanre a great darkness and a troubled spirit...Lanre, what have you done?...You have beaten me...through guile, but never again." -Skarpi
According to Skarpi, it was Selitos and the empire who were betrayed by Lanre/Haliax. This is skewed by Skarpi's prespective, and given that he portrays Lanre as a traitor, I imagine Skarpi is Amyr, not and Angel, who are bound by Aleph to forgive all previous transgressions.
"Selitos knew with certainty and horror that Myr Tariniel was not the only city that had been destroyed. Lanre’s allies had brought about the ruin of the last bastions of the empire" -Skarpi
Here is the only evidence I can find of which side of the war Selitos belonged on, which appears to be the empire. So Lanre had been on his side for many years before, but was influenced by the Cthaeh to turn coat and destroy the empire.
"Lanre...had sought the power to bring Lyra back to life again. Out of love for Lyra, Lanre had sought knowledge where knowledge is better left alone, and gained it at a terrible price." -Skarpi
Lanre was influenced by the Cthaeh which likely changed his name to Haliax.
"Selitos...stood forward and said, 'Lord, if I do this thing will I be given the power to avenge the loss of the shining city?'...Aleph said, 'No.'" -Skarpi
Selitos is subserviant to Aleph, which means during the war, they had both sided with the empire (whether or not Aleph was actually involved in the war is another story)
"Some of the Ruach murmured agreement with Selitos and went to stand with him...they remembered Myr Tariniel and were filled with rage and hurt at Lanre’s betrayal" -Skarpi
"Tehlu stood forward...He knelt before Aleph, his head bowed, his hands open at his sides." -Skarpi
A post Creation War schism erupts on the winning side (the empire) about how to handle the leftover rebels (i.e. Haliax and the Chandrian). The Amyr seek vengeance against the Chandrian, and the Angels seek to protect the innocent, judging only what they themselves witness from that day forth. This could mean that they are the protectors of those who have been corrupted by the Cthaeh, limiting their influence, or perhaps they are similar to the Amyr, just forgiving of all the war time atrocities.

Here's my best summary of the Creation war sides given that info--
Empire: Lanre, Lyra, Selitos, Aleph
Rebels: Iax, Haliax, Chandrian, Cthaeh

Post-Creation War alliances--
Amyr: Selitos, other Ruach
Angels: Aleph, Tehlu, Kirel, Deah, Enlas, Geisa, Lecelte, Imet, Ordal, Andan
Chandrian: Haliax/Alaxel/Lanre, Cyphus, Stercus, Ferule, Usnea, Dalcenti, Alenta

Sorry for the information overload. It just seemed like a lot of questions have been coming up, so I wanted to provide some quotes. Draw your own conclusions as you see fit.
Carl Banks
131. robocarp

That's very nice information, and I applaud you taking the time to get it out there. But I disagree with one of your conclusions. I hate to be a monomaniac about this, but everyone keeps making the same mistake.

Assuming everyone is telling the truth, here are the facts.

1. Iax is sealed behind stone doors. (Felurian and Bast)
2. The enemy of the Empire at Drossen Tor was sealed behind stone doors. (Skarpi)

That's it. It doesn't say that they are same person. Anywhere. We don't even know if the enemy in #2 is a single person, or an army.

Based on the quotes you've given, Iax's alliance is unknown.

One other issue: We don't know if the Creation War was a rebellion, so I wouldn't label the enemy "Rebels". And so there's no confusion: Lanre and the Chandrian are rebels; but we don't know if the preexisting enemies are. (Last sentence added with later edit.)
Steven Halter
132. stevenhalter
TheYllest@130:Good job bringing all of that together.

robocarp@131:Very valid points. I would guess that there are bits of confusion in all of the stories and the "truth" is a matter of perspective and all too falliable memory/historical memory.
Andrew Loyd
133. DoYouHas
@130 - Very nicely summed up. The only thing I would disagree on is the Cthaeh. I choose to see the Cthaeh as a separate entity, aligned with nothing but itself.

@128 - Looking at if from Felurians point of view doesn't change where Iax is as much as I would like to be vindicated in my Lorren guess. Felurian doesn't see the 4C realm as a shut door. She regularly moves between them when she ensnares new men. She talks about the barrier between Fae and 4C as more of an inconvienence, something to be avoided because you lose much of your power (which is interesting because Bast seems pretty powerful in 4C).

Felurian says that he is "shut beyond the doors of stone". Shut implies made fast, which is something the Fae and the 4C realm is not. If Lorren was in fact Iax, it would have to be only in body, not in power.

@129 - I do believe that Knowers Vs Shapers was a thing because I believe Felurian to be a reliable source (first hand, no reason to lie, relatively innocent nature). I would very much like to hear your reasons why Ergen was the Shaper side of the conflict. I'll do the same for why they were 'the enemy'. Maybe we aren't as intractable as it seems right now.

Also, my assumption about the stone doors goes further than what you say. I believe the doors of stone to refer to, if not exclusively, the 4 plate door and perhaps the lockless door. It could also refer to the waystones, but as the books refuse to come to a conclusion of exactly what their role is I pass them over for the 4p door. It is from this belief that the 4p door is one of 'the doors of stone' refered to by Skarpi and Felurian that I draw some conclusions. The first is that the door was made for staying shut. Which means that once 'the enemy' and Iax were shut behind the doors of stone, they likely have not been opened since. Second, there is a sharp contrast between the doors into and out of the Fae, which are full of cracks you can slip through, and the 4p door, which is constructed flush with the frame and wall, and made so tight a pin couldn't fit into the cracks. Also, the 4p door has a quality that sounds like the ancient qualities of the objects of the 3rd pack in Hespe's story. Even though there is a lot lacking about the 4p door that would make it a door, it is undoubtably a door. It's nature shouts what it is, same for the keyholes.

The 4 plate door is foreshadowed, ancient, imposing, and conveys it's nature in a way that you don't see except in Hespe's story about Jax. I don't think it is too much of a stretch to believe that the 4p door is one of the doors of stone. It is the one that I do most my theorizing about because it is the one we know the most about.

All this being said, I believe the doors of stone were created to seal away 'the enemy', much like Elodin's room in the rookery was made to seal away a namer. I don't think they were a preexisting structure simply used by Ergen after they were victorious. And if you agree with me on that and on the 4p door being one of the doors of stone, then you should also agree that it follows that Iax and 'the enemy', even if they are not the same person, but rather an individual and a group, were likely sealed at or near the same time.

I'm going to stop because I'm pretty far down the rabbit hole with my assumptions. Hopefully this cleared up where I am coming at the problem from. I'll start thinking about all the reasons I think the Shapers are not Ergen.
John Graham
134. JohnPoint
Steve @132:
I would guess that there are bits of confusion in all of the stories and the "truth" is a matter of perspective and all too falliable memory/historical memory.
And that is what I take (with reason) to be Pat's meta-narrative or main "point" behind the whole story. It is, as he says frequently, a story of stories. I read the entire saga as a demonstration of the fact that the truth is indeed a matter of perspective.

DoYouHas @133: oh, I know and understand re Felurian and the DoS. I was mostly making a ::silly:: comment regarding your point about Lorren. My point was also that we don't actually know where the war took place, or from what perspective "shut" refers to. Felurian's story occurred before humans and the Fae. So, we don't really know what the landscape looked like, other than that the Fae realm was created by the shapers. So, something being shut behind a door doesn't necessarily tell us where either side is located.

One other point to follow up on robocarp @131: it's also particularly important to realize that we specifically do NOT get a confirmation from Felurian as to who the Shaper of the Dark and Changing Eye is. Pat specifically leaves this information out, which should make us question the assumption that Iax=Jax=the powerful shaper.
Andrew Loyd
135. DoYouHas
There is very little confirmation of anything we talk about here. I work more on things I think fit and how likely I think a theory is to be true.

Among the many assumptions I use when I'm theorizing Iax=Jax=the powerful shaper is a pretty firm one. You are absolutely right that there is no confirmation but when the stealing of the moon is attributed to all three, it is not a huge leap to think that they are the same person called by different names.
Jason Hudson
136. Pykus
@135 I tend to agree with you on that. Good point IMO.

Also it strikes me as odd that "The Enemy" seems to have won the creation war, abd that "The Enemy" was also shut beyond the doors of stone.

I would think that if we just got our asses kicked it would be US who was shut beyond the doors of stone unless we shut them beyond the doors of stone after fleeing through them in the first place... but that doesn't seem to make sense to me yet.

Am I remembering the accounts incorrectly?

I would think that if shutting the enemy beyond the doors of stone against their will had been an option then it would have probably been done a way long time before it actually was.

The other possibility I see is that those who are relating each of those accounts are the descendants of opposing sides in the creation war, but that doesn't make sense either, given that being shut beyond the doors of stone would probably preclude us from hearing their side of things.

Any ideas on that?
Andrew Loyd
137. DoYouHas
@134 -
DoYouHas @133: oh, I know and understand re Felurian and the DoS. I was mostly making a ::silly:: comment regarding your point about Lorren. My point was also that we don't actually know where the war took place, or from what perspective "shut" refers to. Felurian's story occurred before humans and the Fae. So, we don't really know what the landscape looked like, other than that the Fae realm was created by the shapers. So, something being shut behind a door doesn't necessarily tell us where either side is located.
I think it is important to note that Felurian's story takes place both before and after the creation of the Fae realm. The Fae realm is created, the moon gets stolen, the war breaks out, then Iax/enemy gets shut beyond the doors of stone. I think it is reasonable to think that the 4C world and possibly the Fae realm were the locations for the creation war. It doesn't make sense that the story of Lanre (for example) would be passed down over the millennia in the 4C world so that it could be pieced together by someone like Arliden if the story had not originally taken place in the 4C world and was not particularly relevant to it. Also, the way I read Felurian's story is that at one point there was only the 4C world, the world that the moon belongs to. It could have been a different map than we are familiar with (like with the theory that the shapers took a hunk of land to make the Fae), but it would still fundamentally be the 4C world. There hasn't been a third realm even hinted at in the books except for maybe one behind the doors of stone or the heavens. Why would it be more probable that the Creation War happened in some other place rather than being the ancient history of the carefully crafted place we have been introduced to over 2 books?
PS - Sorry if this comes off as combative, it is the rhythm I get into when I'm arguing a point.
138. Dr.Zippy
I'd like to offer an interpretation of the seven things before the Lackless door (apologies if I'm repeating someone else's ideas). Tarborlin the Great's power is often described as linked to his staff, key, coin, and candle. Couldn't these items be used to open the Stone Door? "A ring unworn" could be a key-ring; "a thing tight-held in keeping" could be a coin (think 'tight-fisted with money'); "a candle without light" is obviously a candle. Perhaps more importantly, Kvothe was given a key, coin, and candle by Auri, who may be more than she seems. Remember, there is always truth in stories.

I know the common idea for "a thing tight-held in keeping" is the Locleos box, but I believe the box actually refers to "a word that is forsworn." In the Jax story, one of the items in the third pack is "a small, iron box." (We know the wood of K's locked chest is heavy with iron, and may have been inspired by the wood of the Locleos box, which is described as dense and mineral-rich.) When Jax captures her name "he could feel it, fluttering like a moth against a windowpane." What if the box holds a name, or something inscribed with a name?

I believe the "enemy sealed behind the doors of stone" is not just Jax, but the fae creatures that prey on mankind. They were "shaped" to destroy man, and thus could easily be called "the enemy." Maybe the only way for the skinchangers and scrael to enter the 4C during the creation war was via two, massive open portals to their part of the fae. Supporting this idea are two facts. Mankind is completely unfamiliar with these types of fae creatures, while farmwives still leave out bread and milk on nights with a full moon to pacify fae folk like Bast. Also, they were sealed in such a way that even Bast and his fae kingdom hasn't seen or heard from these creatures in centuries. These facts suggest that the stone doors completely sealed off the scrael, skinchangers, etc., and that Kvothe's yet-unconfirmed action has reintroduced them to the 4C.

I believe "the broken road" refers to the only road on the map, connecting the University to a distant place in the Stormwal Mountains. I believe that either end of the road stops at a stone door (4p door in the Archives, Lackless door at the other end). I would not be surprised if the Lackless door is in a location similar to that described in the Jax story (a flat space high up in the mountains, where he opened the folded-up mansion).

Finally, we assume Kvothe is a hero. Why? Because stories are about good heroes. But tied to him we have a prophecy involving the opening of a long-sealed door, interaction with the pure-evil Cthaeh, and the start of a civil war. Does saving a few women and killing a bunch of bandits balance out the death and destruction that is to come?

I am perfectly happy not having the third book in my hands right now. WMF ends on a high note in the story that brings a smile to my face. I fear that I will not be smiling when this series concludes.
Sahi Rioth
139. Sahirioth
Re: Kvothe being a hero (Dr. Zippy @ 138)

I don't think Kvothe bringing about the destruction of the world would mean he's not a hero. He might have good intentions, be unaware of what the consequences of his actions will be, or even be making a mistake. But he has already shown the qualities of a hero, or rather a vigilante... Worth remembering, however, is that Rothfuss has explicitly stated that Kvothe's story is a tragedy.
thistle pong
140. thistlepong
DoYouHas@137 (and 135 and 133 to some extent):

One of your basic assumptions is that Felurian provides an authoritative version. If I remember correctly, robocarp resists that reading. I like primary sources myself, but even so I’m stymied.

Felurian says the first shaper pulled the moon into Faen, and with it came the war. War. Came to Faen. The Shapers were doin’ wrong things, culminating in stealin’ the Knowers’ ever so precious moon, and that scat would not stand.

The temptation to write fanfiction gets pretty strong sometimes. “The War of Mortal Aggression,” has a nice contingent implicated quality. Alas, it might confuse the point.

The stories, at once complex and incomplete themselves, don’t play well together. Skarpi appears to present Ergen as the defender, besieged for centuries, with one of the most powerful shapers among its remaining leadership. Attempting to reconcile that with Felurian’s account suggests Ergen in Faen.

That’s frustrating. And it’s just one detail. I’m frankly surprised robocarp’s willing to concede Iax is shut beyond the doors of stone. I mean, it certainly seems so obvious, but we’re still left wondering why it’s okay to say it in the Mortal while it’s shushed in Faen. Then consider that in two printings so far Bast says “Jax” rather than “Iax.”

Contrary to popular opinion, Skarpi and Felurian don’t even the same thing. Felurian’s “shut beyond” seems to imply TSotDaCE is safely banished from Faen. Skarpi’s “enemy” lacks referents entirely, but whatever. The enemy was “set beyond” the doors of stone. You shut prisoners behind doors. You set guards beyond them. What are we to make of that?

For what it’s worth, I think the third realm solution is a weak attempt to resolve any contradictions arising where the stories grate against one another. You’re right. There’s no evidence for it. Ignoring the contradictions that challenge a particular reading is no better. Both are expressions of frustration and confusion.

I suppose it looks like the folks who suggest we don’t know much for sure, or that the tension in the interstices could be the point of the story, have thrown up their hands and quit. I wanna offer that it’s more of a gentle reminder to reconsider and examine the assumptions brought to the text versus what can actually be assumed from it.

Take your thoughts on the four plate door. We know some stuff about it from the text. Elodin and Puppet both confirm it’s a door. Elodin might even have implied he’s been through it, having said that as a Re’lar Kvothe doesn’t get to. He certainly seems to be at peace with his former curiosity. Kvothe’s initially confused by the round holes in the copper plates. We, as readers, aren’t; especially after seeing the key around Meluan’s neck.

Sure, it’s undoubtedly a door of stone. And I’m sure it’s got a role to play in the story. I’m not sure why it has anything to do with the Creation War. Or why Skarpi and Felurian say doors if it does. Did someone use Occam’s Razor to chop folks in half and store the sinister portions behind Valaritas and the dexter portions somewhere else?
Ryan Murray
141. TheYllest
I appreciate your input here, which I find to be extremely valid. We have no confimation that Iax is the enemy locked away behind the doors of stone at Drossen Tor, only that he is currently locked behind the doors of stone (not necessarily the same). I very much like the idea that an army of shaped/Fae creatures such as scrael, skin dancers, daruna, and gremmen (whatever these are), is also behind the doors of stone, and not even necessarily the same door(s) as Iax. In the frame, we assume Kvothe has opened the doors of stone (especially given the working title of D3), perhaps releasing this vast army of creatures on the world as well as Iax.
With Regards to Iax's alliance, I suspect that only one side of the war had control of the doors of stone, meaning that even if they are separate, it is likely anything behind any doors of stone belonged to the same side in the war. I understand this is speculaiton, but it feels right.

"Iax spoke to the Cthaeh before he stole the moon, and that sparked the entire creation war" -Bast
"one shaper was greater than the rest...he stole the moon and with it came the war" -Felurian
"Jax brought out the black iron box, closing the lid and catching her name inside...I have mastery over you (Ludis/Moon). And I say you must stay with me forever, so I can be happy." -Hespe
Given this information, there is no question in my mind that Iax=Jax=powerful shaper. They all "steal" the moon, and in two versions, Iax/powerful shaper both start a war as a result. Also, shared between Felurian and Hespe's version is the fact that now the moon shifts between two places because it has been partially trapped. If this turns out not to be the case, my mind will be blown.
Steven Halter
142. stevenhalter
The pieces of textual evidence for more than two realms come from the story of Jax. They are arrived at from somewhat metaphorical inference.
The first pieces come from the start of the story: (1)
“Jax was a strange boy. A thoughtful boy. A lonely boy. He lived in an old house at the end of a broken road. He—”
One day, a tinker came down the road to Jax’s house. This was something of a surprise, because the road was broken, so nobody ever used it.
“If you can find something in your pack that will make me happy,” Jax said. “I will give you my house. It’s old and broken, but it’s worth something.”
The tinker looked up at the huge old house, one short step away from being a mansion. “It is at that,” he said.
Then, from the second portion we have: (2)
The hermit shook his head. “Can’t you hear them? Most things whisper. These things shout.” He pointed at the piece of crooked wood. “That is a folding house unless I miss my guess. Quite a nice one too.”
“What’s a folding house?”
“You know how you can fold a piece of paper on itself, and each time it gets smaller?” the old man gestured at the piece of crooked wood. “A folding house is like that. Except it’s a house, of course.”
We widely take part (2) to be a metaphor for the creation of the Fae realm. The "unfolding" of the "house" results in the creation of a separate world (manifold maths). If we apply this meaning of house here to part (1), we may infer that the house that Jax lives in at the beginning is a world distinct from that in which most people live and that the pathway to it is broken (sealed?). So, the "tinker" is a traveller between worlds.
When the hermit recognizes the folded house, it is as an object that he has seen before, so one of many.
thistle pong
143. thistlepong

I suppose that's plausible. At the moment it feels like I can only see it if that's what I'm looking for. Mostly I see a good listener. There should at least be a whisper of a rumour somewhere else. Still, not bad.

The Yllest@141:

The new paperback recasts Bast's statement as, "Jax spoke to the Cthaeh," which to sone extent calls the equivalence into question. Your list ignores Skarpi's explicit statement that Selitos was the most powerful. And he's, y'know, the only reason we know the name Iax. I think JohnPoint's urging caution more than denying a possibility.
Jason Hudson
144. Pykus
@142 I like your reasoning here quite a lot. I've been reading up on Norse mythology because of the references I think I see to the story of Odin, and the tree he hung himself from was the tree from which 9 separate realms hung and that seems significant to me and might make some of my big questions make more sense.
John Graham
145. JohnPoint
As is frequently the case, thistle said it best @140:
I suppose it looks like the folks who suggest we don’t know much for sure, or that the tension in the interstices could be the point of the story, have thrown up their hands and quit. I wanna offer that it’s more of a gentle reminder to reconsider and examine the assumptions brought to the text versus what can actually be assumed from it.
I definitely agree that Iax=Jax=TSotDaCE is certainly indicated by the parallels of the three stories, and -- from all appearances -- most likely to be correct. My reminder is to probe the areas where we specifically do not get confirmation or where we see conflicting details.

Felurian is, afawct, an eyewitness to the events. As such, her version is most likely to be "accurate" -- setting aside the possibility of her 1) intentionally misleading Kvothe 2) misremembering events, or 3) not knowing everything that was happening at the time. Since her story is most likely to be accurate, it is intriguing that she specifically does not name TSotDaCE. She knows it, for sure. So why doesn't she tell us (other than a relatively lame excuse re calling his name)? Potentially, she doesn't tell us because it would contradict the other two stories that we do hear.

Remember that both Bast and Hespe are repeating stories that they have heard, and we don't really know the provenance. It is certainly possible that somewhere, sometime, the true story was changed (either accidently or for propaganda), and that led to the versions that Bast and Hespe both repeat. Since we hear them from two different sources, we assume that they validate each other. But if they're derived from the same story, they would be likely to share common characteristics.

Actually, Arliden's example of eye-color is a good example for how we should approach this, following a principle that's used in cladistic analysis in taxonomy. To paraphrase, a bunch of grandchildren sharing the same eyecolor imply that the grandparents likely had that eyecolor too. Similarly, species evolve over time, and closer-related species tend to share more common characteristics. In taxonomy, we look at an entire set of characteristics across a group of species to help us determine what are the "true" relationships between the species. Thus, if we have three species that share a common ancestor, the two that have more traits in common are likely to have more recently diverged than the other three.

Stories evolve as well, so we could run a cladistic analysis of the Creation War stories. In all three stories (as quoted by the Yllist @141), we have someone "stealing" the moon. In two, we have that someone named as Iax or Jax (Bast and Hespe). In two, we have that event sparking the War (Bast and Felurian). We know that Felurian's story diverged from the other two earliest (or potentially at the same time), based on the assumption that she was an eyewitness.

Thus, it's likely that someone did "steal" the moon, and that that event led to (or was early during) the Creation War. However, the oldest version of the story - Felurian's - doesn't name that someone, specifically avoiding it. But we shouldn't assume that since Bast's and Hespe's stories share (+/-) the name, therefore Felurian's does too.
Ryan Murray
146. TheYllest
How are we supposed to reconcile these two quotes, both told in Skarpi's first story?
"Selitos was the most powerful namer of anyone alive in that age."
"Selitos knew that in all the world there were only three people who could match his skill in names: Aleph, Iax, and Lyra."
Are the three listed not living? We know Lyra is dead from Haliax.
"My wife is dead . Deceit and treachery brought me to it , but her death is on my hands." (Aside-this seems to fit with Skarpi being sided with the empire as Lanre feels like the empire is the cause of Lyra's death, not himself, in Denna's song)
Aleph appears to be alive, but may also be some kind of undead diety. Iax we have previously assumed to be behind the doors of stone at this time, which may not be accurate, but not alive? We can't be sure. The two statements both reference the same Age as well, so that can't be a limiting factor.

Is there any logical way both of these statements can be true? Should we assume Skarpi is lying about Selitos' power given his likely Amyr association? They seem too contradictory to come from the same source. The implications of these statements based on current discussion could be impactful.
Nisheeth Pandey
147. Nisheeth
@146, TheYllest:
It could be as simple as Selitos was a Namer, while Iax/Jax or whoever was mentioned in Felurian's story was a Shaper. This would imply that the Empire were the Namers thigh.
Carl Banks
148. robocarp

Actually I credit Felurian among the most reliable, but that was kind of beside the point.

There's two ways to analyse things. One, by taking everything at face value, and two, by being cynical and suspecting that anything could be a lie. The thing is, even when you take a cynical approach (which I kind of like to do) it's important to be sure of what we can conclude from a face-value analysis as a starting point. And more importantly, what we can't conclude.

Concluding that Iax was an enemy of the empire is a mistake. Suspecting? Yes, it's a very reasonable thing to suspect. Conclude, no. What's infuriating is when I suggest something unpopular like, "Ergen was allied with the Shapers", and people say, "Can't be true because Iax is the enemy sealed behind stone doors and he was a Shaper." Uh, no, we don't actually know that.

OTOH, concluding that Iax is sealed behind doors of stone, not necessarily the enemy, is correct at face value. Two points of evidence directly connect them: Felurian's story and Bast crediting Iax with the theft. It probably wouldn't surprise you that I have some minor doubts about this, given my distrust of Bast, but that's according to a more cynical analysis.


The Creation War definitely started out as Knowers vs Shapers, but it doesn't mean the war still fell along those lines by the time Lanre appeared. Given how it seemed like the war lasted thousands of years, who knows if they even remembered why they were fighting? Additionally, it helps solve one of the more nagging problems, namely that people on both sides appear to use Shaping magic at least a little.
Jason Hudson
149. Pykus
@146 I've thought that the several statements that had been made about who the most powerful namers were were probably all correct, but that the statements were referring to points in time that were different enough that things changed. Lyra Iax and Aleph might have BECOME more powerful in the span of time between the two referenced in the comments. I was also thinking that it might be that the statements were referring to differing worlds... maybe Selitos was the most powerful in his realm... it might be interesting to re-interpret "Cities" when people talk about the Myr Tariniel and such as being the capitals of different realms... maybe travel between worlds used to be common?... Just a thought. :)
thistle pong
150. thistlepong
The Yllest@146:

It's tempting to write "exactly." But in this case match just means "to provide a worthy competitor." Selitos is the acknowledged reigning champion and title belt holder at that time. Iax et al are not ninety second knockouts.
Ryan Murray
151. TheYllest
Both statements refer to namers, so we can assume both refer to the same power. Also, shaping is just another form of naming, knowers being capable of it just choosing not to (at least in the beginning).

In the context of the story it all occurs in the present, recalling events from the war that had past. It is all the same age, so no significant time passes from the beginning to the end. I also can't see how different worlds would matter unless time is dependent on the world, because he is the greatest of the time, but has three matches throught the world (as in one world). Thistlepong's interpretation makes more sense, it is just semantics.

If this is true, then how has Haliax become more powerful? He must have derived his newly acquired power from a source greater than that of Selitos. Cthaeh? Its interesting to note Selitos' comment about Lanre's binding being would be "as fruitless as a boy attacking a soldier with a willow stick," when the Cthaeh tree has branches similar to a willow.
So does this mean that Haliax is now the most powerful namer in that time, or did he just catch Selitos by surprise? From Selitos' thoughts, we can at least assume the Lanre has become a "match" to his power.
thistle pong
152. thistlepong

The robocarp inside is more cynicl than the real one, I guess. Mea culpa.
What's infuriating is when I suggest something unpopular like, "Ergen was allied with the Shapers", and people say, "Can't be true because Iax is the enemy sealed behind stone doors and he was a Shaper." Uh, no, we don't actually know that.
That's actually well within the larger point I was trying to make. It's also kind of what makes something like The Yllest@130 difficult to respond to. Ayway, your pov has influenced mine.

The Yllest@151:

How indeed? How did Kvothe manage to best Felurian? Did he derive his newfound power from some greater source? Kvothe had no skill with names. Fighting her would be as fruitless as... well, you get the idea. There's a technical parallel in the story wherin a neophyte bests a veteran, so it's not even a gratuitous use of the trope.

I've always been resistant to "the Cthaeh (or Iax, or whatever) gave Lanre powers." The Cthaeh didn't give Kvothe any. Doesn't seem to have given Iax (or Jax, depending on the printing) any. Doesn't seem to be known to do that, nor would it need to. Iax might be locked away, so that's a dubious call at best.

On the other hand, this is how naming and the sleeping mind works. Flashes of insight and incredible ability. The only other time we get "dark forces better left alone," Wil's talking specifically about wizard college. And both versions of Myr Tariniel suggest Lanre got the drop on Selitos. Once he's silenced it's over.

Or maybe he had some of that crap Kilvin talks about. That frictinless surface and the object that consumes angular momentum would immobilize someone pretty handily. I dunno.

A quick glance makes it look like fighting soldiers with willow sticks is as common an idiom as the road to Tinue. I have no idea what to derive from the rhinna being willow like.
Nisheeth Pandey
153. Nisheeth
@151, TheYllest:
I think that the difference you state is the conceptual one, and that in practice, it would be much harder go from Namer to Shaper, like, you could know how everything about how a machine works, but making it still would be hard. Hence I always though of Shapers and Namers as entirely different.

On the other hand, my comment was something I had just noticed. I think the more likely solution (and the one I actually believe) is that Skarpi was exagerrating in for the sake of storytelling.

Now, not related to the current topic: I was reading Cthaeh part again and found something that confused me:
After Bast tells Kvothe about its flower, Kvothe tells the story of the Fastingway war, which started beause a boy took the flower. What I don't understand is(even by assuming what Bast says about the Cthaeh to be true), how does simply taking the flower lead to a series of catastrophes? Cthaeh didn't have any way to influence the boy.
Andrew Loyd
154. DoYouHas
Hmmm, lots of interesting stuff since I went to bed.

@Thislepong - Yes, one of my flaws is that I am more trusting of accounts than I probably should be, Felurian and Skarpi being two big cases.

I know this is not directly confirmed, but it seems to me that the knowers and the shapers were quarreling before the Fae realm was created. I have always tied the age of the knowers and shapers to Ergen, so I assumed that Ergen existed in 4C before the Fae realm came about.

I think something that is causing us major troubles at the moment is that none of us really know what the line between a Knower and a Shaper is. Felurian hints at it for us, but we really don't know. I feel like we are doomed to argue in circles because there is no way to know if Selitos (for example) is a Shaper or not.

I am also willing to concede that if the doors of stone from Skarpi and the doors of stone from Felurian are different, then Iax would not have to be 'the enemy'. It could be that Skarpi was referring to waystones, which could have been an attempt to seal off the Fae from 4C. That could make them both markers for safe roads and places of pagan frolics. I have resisted this explanation because I think there is more to the waystones than that and I don't think the entire Fae was part of 'the enemy'. That being said, there is no guarantee that Ergen wouldn't see the Fae as a convienent place to put their enemy and lock away the good with the bad. I will also bring up that the Fae realm has never been made fast, from it's creation to present, so this function for the waystones is a flimsy explanation at best. But there are other more plausible theories like the Lockless door and the 4p door not being related or, even if they are related, serving different functions. Even though I don't ascribe, I will admit the possibilities.

Here are a couple new reasons why the Shapers lost and are behind the doors of stone. (This is discounting Aleph because I think he/she is the exception to pretty much everything).

1. Felurian refers to everything the about the Shapers in the past tense.

2. The Shaper's activities that so angered the Knowers, that they wouldn't stop even unto the point of war, have not been evident in anything we've seen in the narrative except for the Fae realm itself, which occured before the enemy is set beyond the DoS.

A small matter of clarification on the 4p door. Kvothe isn't confused about the keyholes. This is the very first mention of them:
"In spite of these notable lacks, the expanse of grey stone was undoubtedly a door. It simply was. Each copper plate had a hole in its center, and though they were not shaped in the conventional way, they were undoubtedly keyholes."

And while I agree that Elodin's statement would imply that at some point you could go behind it. I think that is pretty strongly contradicted by the frame level foreshadowing we get about the door:
There were other locked doors in the University, places where dangerous things were kept. Where old and forgotten secrets slept: silent and hidden. Doors whose opening was forbidden. Doors whose thresholds no one crossed, whose keys had been destroyed or lost, or locked away themselves for safety's sake. But they all paled in comparison to the four plate door.

I would be very surprised if I was the only one that drew a parallel between the nature of the 4p door and the objects from the third pack. There are other doors that are meant to stay closed at the University, other doors whose keys are a mystery, other doors where old and dangerous things are kept, but the 4 plate door is moreso. And if you think that is a fair comparison, then I think the connection back to Ergen or Jax or Shapers or all three is reasonable speculation.

On a side note, in the playing card kickstarter conversation PR refers to the Amyr as "propagandists" (iirc). I had been thinking of their actions largely as removing relevant information from the public space. If they are actively adding back false information it throws extra doubt on a number of things like Skarpi's stories (we don't know alignment), Denna's patron/song, what made Arliden choose Lanre as the topic of his song, where did he get his key bits of information. I'm sure there are others, but those are what immediately came to mind.
John Graham
155. JohnPoint
DoYouHas @154:
I had been thinking of their actions largely as removing relevant information from the public space. If they are actively adding back false information it throws extra doubt on a number of things like Skarpi's stories (we don't know alignment), Denna's patron/song, what made Arliden choose Lanre as the topic of his song, where did he get his key bits of information.
This is precisely how I read the meta-story. Pat has mentioned many times (and I've discoursed elsewhere about it) that this is a story about stories. And one feature of stories is that they change over time and are subject to propaganda. We see that in many elements of the narrative, from Kvothe spreading stories about himself during his first term at the University, to the scene with the birth of the Legend of the Chronicler in WMF. We also see it in examples of Pat's other work (e.g. Princess and on his blog).

Thus, we need to examine stories exposed in the narrative with some level of healthy skepticism.
Ryan Murray
156. TheYllest
I would argue that Iax/Jax got his power from some source as he appears normal, save for a knack for unluckiness (in Hespe's version), but then receives the tinker's packs which the hermit helps him unlock. Whether or not either of those characters symbolize a Cthaeh, one of them gave him objects of power, and the other helped him unlock (untie) them. After which, according to your particular source, he did some combination of the following: creates Faen, steals the moon, begins a war, becomes the greatest shaper. Any of those things is enough to constitute a vast change from where he began. It is just too curious to me that both Jax and Lanre attain abilities far beyond what they previously had. They are both tragedies, similar to Kvothe, starting fairly normal, gaining unprecedented abilities, ending in death, despair, and destruction as payment for their newfound power. The parallels scream. The Cthaeh is the common factor.

Also, in my theory, if the Cthaeh can give powers, he doesn't necessarily have to save for when it is the preferable way to choose the path he wishes the world to take.

It's hard to say exactly what happened in that particular story as we are given a synopsis of a presumably more detailed story which Felurian conveyed to Kvothe. However, I think it is pretty reasonable to assume that you cannot simply approah the Rhinna tree and take a flower without the Cthaeh luring you in with his biting words and influence.
thistle pong
157. thistlepong
Kvothe nodded. “It’s one of the stories Felurian told. I never understood the part about the flower until now. She never mentioned the Cthaeh.”

“She wouldn’t have, Reshi. It’s considered bad luck.” He shook his head. “No, not bad luck. It’s like spitting poison in someone’s ear. It simply isn’t done.”
They leave Cthaeh out as a matter of course, but every Faen listener can infer it from the flower.


It's nothing to do with trust, really. It's a little bit dispassionate analysis and little bit openness to alternative explanations. What is actually said versus where we land on the jump to conclusions mat.

The Yllest@156:

You're taking Bast's position, "what every Fae child knows," that all these events can be traced back to Cthaeh; and then going a step byond and attibuting all onus to him.


While I'm a bit wary of the difficult to verify "iirc" within a dozen hours of video, I can dig what you're saying. Given the structure of The Princess and Mister Wiffle, I'm prepared to be wrong about some of our most lauded theories.
Steven Halter
158. stevenhalter
thistlepong@157:I expect D3 to be an interesting combination of "Ooh, we figured that one out," "We got that completely wrong," and "We never saw that coming" moments.
Andrew Loyd
159. DoYouHas
@Thistlepong - *IIRC* The actual phrase is "propaganda merchants".
John Graham
160. JohnPoint
Thistlepong @157 --

Sorry if I was a bit unclear in my point @155. I didn't mean that I read the meta-story as the Amyr are necessarily controlling/propagandizing everything, but rather, that the stories are changing over time and subject to direct manipulation by (potentially) multiple factions.

Over the course of 5000+ years, we're talking about some major gene-flow in the oral history ("meme-flow"?) -- some changes will be random or happenstance (akin to genetic drift), while others will be intentional (akin to artificial selection).

I read the meta-story as thus: Pat is telling a story about stories, how they work, how they change, and how they can be used both to find and to hide the truth. As he claims (e.g., ) telling stories about stories is what he does and he can't help it. He is Ruh to his very bones.
161. Derek Patterner

Possibly off-topic, but has anyone compiled a list of allusions and historical references in the novels?

For example, I found it interesting that Felurian mentions "Mavin Manshaped" as a character in a manling tale--Mavin Manyshaped is a character in Sheri Tepper's "True Game" novels.

"The Door of Stone", beyond which Iax is imprisoned or exiled, reminded me a bit of Tolkien's "Door of night", beyond which Morgoth (Sauron's master, a rebellious angel/Lucifer-like figure) is imprisoned/exiled in the Silmarillion.

The mentions of a courtesan named Hetaera (hetaerae were Greek courtesans) and of the silphium plant (Kvothe's contraceptive agent, an extinct plant from Libya used as an abortifacient) were also neat.
Paul Murphy
162. Smurfy911
So I didn't go through all of the comments - I've spent the past 2 days reading the whole reread of both books, quite lengthy.

Here are some speculations and just want to see your guys' thoughts.

First on Haliax and Iax. This resonated throughout the whole book with me. First I believe that Haliax is both Iax and Lanre - in this I believe that when Lanre died and was brought back, he was brought back with the body/soul of Iax - hence being renamed my selitos as he was not Lanre anymore. Maybe whatever was attempted by Lyra to bring him back instead just refused his body with somethnig powerful that she believed would revive him, only to replace him with Iax. So my following here is that Lanre is actually sealed behind the doors/in a prison.

Secondly - Do we have any inkling as to the plans of the chandrian? My personal thought is that they are trying to undo the splitting of worlds. To rejoin the Fae and human lands together and restore the moon to one sky. While this may seem farfetched I believe this has evidence in that inside the story/out of the frame we only hear of the fae as far off story tales, with conflicting evidence and widespread disbelief. (assumably because they are restricted of passage through the moon gates only opening on full moons or during specific lunar periods)However in the frame we see that they were 'very far west' not that Bast and K are surprised by their appearance, just that they have made it this far, as though the two worlds are collapsing and the fae creatures are invading this land full of easy prey. To this extent it makes me think that Haliax's doors and the immortality of the Chandrian are granted by the split between the two worlds, and joining them, reuniting the moon would finally end their torment or open the doors allowing them release.

Third - Has anyone thought about the trifoil compass points being the large yellow hideous spots on the map in random locations? they just seemt o have no story relation so far, and Kvothe going to Renere, finishing the university, wrapping up the frame and goingt o all three points seems very far fetched considering he said the next book will be shorter than WMF, so I think those points are the trifoil marks. (again I havn't scoured comments but have not seen this mentioned anywhere?)

Fourth- Just a odd bit of information I've been curious about. Bast is afraid of death, Kvothe talks about the possibility of killing Felurean, the sithe kill anyone that talks to the Cthaeth - obviously human and fae, but it is never discussed as to why no one has tried to burn down the tree or remove it/cover it. It is therefore in my belief that this means the tree is a prison, and the properties of the Roan? sp . wood the only suitable thing for whatever is in it. Also it hates red butterflies as they offend it's aesthetic. Kvtothe's red hair? It leaves the blue alone - Chandrian's blue flame? I know it's stretching but you wonderful people seem to make miracles out of pidgeon scratches of info!

Lastly - The unseen ring, could this just be the ring he receives from lady Lackless, given the amount of times he's told not to wear it, it shouldn't be seen and whatnot?
163. Marco.

"Sure, it’s undoubtedly a door of stone."

Is the "it" you refer to the 4 plate door? If so, and you'd be willing I'd love to hear you flesh that out a little. (I was under the impression that folks were relatively settled on the waystones being the doors of stone)
chris schorr
164. chrisss811
Hi everybody I'm new here and want to share my thoughts and theories with you. I have postet this first on reddit and emailed it to Jo. She said I just should post it here. First off, I'm sorry for my poor english because its not my first language (I'm german). This link will contain spoilers! I have read and heard both books a dozend times. I was researching almost daily new theories of you guys and think I have read almost all of them all. I'm really hooked on these stuff. I don't think that Patrick Rothfuss has giving us already the key to unravel the story yet, but I try to give some new thoughts to your amazing theories.
First off I want to call some irrefutable facts which everybody needs to know.
A: Kvothe is the son of Nethalia Lackless: Ok you remember the end of the rhyme of Arliden about his wife. - not tally a lot less - Nethlia Lackless. I didn't have the option to unravel this, because I've read the story in german. But I think this have to be evidence enough. I've first read about this theory in Joe Waltons "Under the wagon thread". Credits to her at this time.
B: Cinder is denfintly Master Ash. Maybe Bredon is Cinder too because of some 'Glamour-magic', but Cinder is Ash. When Kvothe is looking for a name for Dennas Patron he uses his naming-skills: "Frederick the Flippant. Frank. Feran. Forue. Fordale." Feran - Fe/ Forue - ru/ Fordale - le - Ferule. This have to be evidence enough.
Here are my thoughts:

1.Cinder: Cinder is alive! Kvothe is very carefully telling us the story. Carefully in consideration of telling us true Names. He told us Cinders true name once. The first time when Haliax named Cinder, it was "Ferula". But when the Adem gives him the true names of the Seven, it was "Ferule, chill and dark of eye". Which I think is the true name(see above - Feran, Forue, Fordale). We know that it is dangerous to call these names numerous times, because the person you name, can hear you and even know where you at. Thats the reason why he changed this name. The same thing with "Cyphus- bears the blue flame." But in the story with Tarborlin told from Marten, it was "Scyphus-the Soccerer-king". I think this is an evidence that he's alive too.

2.The Silence: I think Kvothe already killed one of the Seven and therefore became one of the Seven. In the discussion between Arliden and Ben about the Chandrian, they call their signs and one of them was a 'non-natural Silence' (Maybe from 'Grey Dalcenti, never speaks'). And this is probably the one Kvothe killed because now the "Silence" belongs to Kvothe. The Chandrian are always seven. And when Kvothe killed one of them, he maybe is cursed to be one of them, to stuff the hole he made.

3. The thrice-locked-chest: I think the man who is waiting to die, is a "man"(Chandrian) in the thrice locked box(maybe Cinder). Remember when Bast knocked at the box and then Kvothe asked him "what would you do if your knocking get a respond(or an anwser)?" The Box is constructed with iron and copper. Maybe the copper is to hold the Rhinta and the iron to let him feel a constant pain. Remember the heavy weight of the box. They say the Chandrian can't die but maybe there is a way (copper?), maybe Kvothe will sacrifice himself like Telhu with Encanis. I think the one in the box is a decoy bird, which leads me to:

4. The beautiful game: Kvothe is setting a trap. A trap for the Seven. The sword Folly, can't rust because its not iron( maybe copper). It cannot fall down from the wall because of the Ruah wood. The Ruah wood cannot decay. Then there is something with these brass bound barrels. Brass is something of a copper alloy. Maybe he will stick them in there. But I think there was only three barrels, not seven or six. Hmm? But these things are all prepared for an Chandrian attack(rotting wood, rusting iron, brittling bricks etc.) I think he have chosen the place and the time well, exactly like with those Scraels. He have chosen a village where almost only old people live. People who have lived there lives, excepting one - the 'Smiths-apprentice'. And that was the one he wanted to save.(and at one time he tried to warn Graham too, that he should be ready to defend himself) He knows everybody in this village (Newarre-Nowhere) will die. That is not the way of Bushido, sorry i mean Lethani, but it is for the greater good. But he wanted to save the apprentice and that was Lethani. And this whole trap - isnt both of it. It is the "beautiful game". A trap in a trap etc.

5. Alchemie: Kvothe has lost all magic skills excepting one. There is one magic you dont need body or mental skills. Alchemie - there for you need knowledge. Alchemie is the form of magic which bored Kvothe and he didn't learn in his story so far. But we know that he is Alchemie-skilled in the real time. He knows the Cellum Tinkture etc. He wants Bast to learn Alchemie. I think Alchemie is a big key weapon in fighting the Seven.
Some Alchemie: Cyphus is related to copper. Cyprus. Cyprus is the Island where Copper came from. Coppers(Cuprum) liguistic origin came from the word Cyprus. Cinder is related to mercury. Remeber he moves like mercury. Originally the word mercury meant "living silver". Stercus is in thrall of iron. I've read a great theorie about the seven alchemie Symbols of the ancient time: lead, tin, silver, mercury, iron, copper and finally gold, I think everyone of the Seven is related to one and is bound with them,like Stercus with iron and Cyphus with copper.And I think they can be used against them. Aurum for example means gold in latin. I think Auri is a key to this puzzle too.

The blue fire(or flame): Ok, Cyphus bears the blue flame and Cyphus could be related to copper. But why flames are turning blue in his presence? Laurian told Abenthy that a blue flame can be caused by natural gas, which is true. I googled a bit about the phenomen blue flame, and the easiest method to produce blue fire is to use copper chloride. Just spread copper chlorid over a campfire(or hearthfire) and the flames will turn blue. (When you burn copper sulphat you will get a blue-green flame). Another important attribute of copper chloride is that it will chorode most metals. Iron corrosion can be precipitated by copper chlorid. Remember that one sign of the Chandrian is rusting iron. This doesn't fit the theorie that every Chandrian is related to one sign, and Stercus seemed related to iron. It's just a thought. Maybe Cyphus or Stercus abstract copper chlorid somehow? Ok, that sounds weird, but in my head it had made more sense. I have read that Patrick Rothfuss studied chemical engineer. I think that Chemie and Alchmie will be very significant in 'Day 3.'

Kvothes weapons against the Chandrian:
(We know that demons fear pure Fire, Iron and mirrorglass(and the holy name of god, of course))

AlchemieKeyCoinCandleFolly(copper, or magic iron?) the Waystone Inn itself:

Tarborlin was in a prison of stone and he only had a coin, a candle
and a key. Kvothe is in a big stone-house(maybe waystones) and had these
weapons too.
Maybe the Waystone Inn is made of big waystones. The Chandrian don't
appear near waystones.
Why? We know that waystones standing on safe places. Maybe the Waystones
handicap the Chandrian in some way? The VALARITAS-Door is a big
waystone too. Kvothe told us about an place called Faeriniel(when he
told Sim and Wil the story about Sceop).
He said that this is a place you cannot find when you looking for it.
You only can find it when you travel to another place.
I think the Waystone Inn is on this place(Newarre). There often appear
travellers like at the
beginning of TNOTW, or the possesed soldier, or the Chronicler, or the
two soldier at the end of TWMF, etc.
The Waystone Inn attract them like a lodestone. We know that waystones
attract people. They draw them somehow magnetic. Maybe waystones don't
brickle by an Chandrian attack.

I think the Chronicler is more then he seems. There is something
important about him. Yes i know he's a Lochees (Lackless). Maybe at the
end oft the story he will be the hero of the KKC. Kvothe tells him the
story for a reason. It is not in Kvothes nature to tell his story just
to demystify himself for the afterworld. I think he is part of Kvothes
game. The story he tells is a part of his game. He is luring them with
his story.
So what about Bastas? Hmm. Maybe he is not so sympathetic to Kvothe as
he claims to be. But Kvothe is too clever and too much of an actor. He
is acting infront of Bast and he plays him like a lute. I think Bast is
Felrurians child and want something from Kvothe. He want something from
Kvothe, not from Kote and thats why he wants his old Reshi back.

By the way, there are some thoughts I can't really back up but i will
list them anyway:
The Symphathie-Crime against Kvothe don't come from Ambrose. I don't
think so. Maybe someone else attacked him with his blood. The same thing
with these two assassins. Maybe Ambrose don't send them. Someone has
his hidden hand on Kvothe since the beginning of the story. Why did
Scarpi know his name. Why did Lorren know Arliden. Why did Denna say
it's her job to know things about kvothe. Why did Denna appear
everywhere Kvothe goes? Why did Bredon flatter on Kvothe. Why did
sometimes stranges people appear in the story(for example before his
ship-journey or when he left Vintas and wanted to throw Meluans ring
away). I think Kvothe is watched and controlled by a gray eminence.

The Univesity is not what it seems to be. It is not a place where
some teachers are really excited for to teach you powerfull names, so
you can get happy with them. Elodin said Kvothe doesnt know to what he
commits himself. He said the University is not a big playground. I think
the University is a big watchtower for the VALARITAS-Door. The masters
are teaching them these names for some reason. Why is Elodin so
enthusiatic to teach Kvothe the name of the wind? I hope you can help me
with this thoughts.

Another thing i noticed is that Puppet is allowed to have candles in
his room in the library. Maybe Lorren was not flipping because he was in
fear that the books catch fire, but rather cause the four-plate-door
can be affected by fire somehow. Maybe there is something alchemistic
with this door too. Remember the four Elements of Alchemie: Fire, Water,
Air and Earth. MAybe you must name them?

Well, I'm sorry for the long post and my bad english(and my terrible
grammar), I'm trying to improve it. I hope you can give me some feedback
on my theories.
thistle pong
165. thistlepong

Nothing meaningful. Kvothe is a man of flesh. Valaritas is a door of stone.
Steven Halter
166. stevenhalter
chrisss811@164:Thank's for joining in. The trap idea is quite interesting. Others have proposed a beautiful game and the pieces you mention could fit into such a thing.
I agree that the Valaritas door and maybe the Lockless door will prove to lead to somewhere else.
Nisheeth Pandey
167. Nisheeth
@164, chriss811:
The idea that he is making a trap, and howeverything is made to resist the Chandrian's signs is intersting.
About your questions:
I think it was confirmed in the story that the malfessance was done by Ambrose. From what I remember, Devi used symapthy to light Kvothe's mommet on fire, while the Gram would protect him. Then he would go to the room and ensure that the mommet was destroyed.

Skarpi knowing Kvothe's name could be him being able to see Names, and him using Kvothe's real name. But Kvothe only heard 'Kvothe' like he heard Dal say Fire when he actually had used the Name of fire.

PR said that Lorren knew of Arliden because he was a bard, and many songs were attributed to him. He wanted Kvothe to help him with identifying which (unidentified) songs were by Arliden.
John Graham
168. JohnPoint
chrisss811 @164-

Welcome. I also find your idea that Kvothe is creating a series of "Chandrian resistant" objects to be quite interesting, and something that I haven't seen mentioned before. It's definitely worth examining.

It also raises a question for me: what will Graham deliver on D3? In each of the other two books, he brought something atypical early in the book. If both the mounting board and the barrels are intended to be Chandrian-proof (or, even if they are not), Graham will likely bring something new on D3. What will it be?

Re the thrice-locked-chest: I strongly doubt that Cinder (or any of the Chandrian, or anyone alive) is locked in the chest. My vote is on the items that define him as Kvothe -- his lute, his shaed, probably his rings, perhaps in one form or another the V and H. He seems too strongly desirous of the items in the chest for it to be an enemy -- at the end of WMF, he seems to need to access the chest, almost like an addict going through withdrawl. To me, the scene indicates that he wants what is in the chest because it would truly make him Kvothe again.
chris schorr
169. chrisss811
@Nisheeth @Johnpoint
Thanks for the welcome. You're probably right with Scarpi is a namer, that makes sence. When Elodin calls the Wind to Kvothe, Will or Sim understand only "Wind" too. And your Question what will Graham deliver early in D3 is excatly what i thought. I'm sure he will appear with something new, which Kvothe ordered. I post my theory on reddit too and someone already told me why Lorren knows the Barden, but thank you for the information. I always thought it has to be something of major importance and I'm a little bit dissapointed about that. I dont think Rothfuss would lie on such a thing.And with the box: When only his tools are in this box why is it then so heavy(300pounds or so?). Another question to you guys: Is it true that Rothfuss will bring out another Trilogie about Kvothe. I have heard that somewhere and hopes it is not true. They have said the first Trilogie will be Kvothe in Kotes story, and the next Trilogie from there on. In an interview with Rothfuss I have heard him say "a good story needs an end". I hope the KKC will not be such an endless Cyclus like ASOIAF.
John Graham
170. JohnPoint
chrisss811 @169 --

There has been a lot of speculation both ways on Pat's next trilogy, and nothing definite either way. I have specifically heard Pat say that THIS story ends with D3 -- depending on how you interpret "this" that could be construed as either "Kvothe's life/role in the 4C ends, etc." or as "Kvothe's story of his personal history ends (opening the possibility for another trilogy to be about Kvothe in the future)."

Thistlepong has previously linked to information indicating that the next trilogy won't be about Kvothe (I don't remember exactly what offhand, but you could find it by searching thistle's recent posts).

So, to answer your question about the next trilogy: it's not certain either way. However, the best guesses I have seen indicate that it will not be about Kvothe, and we will have a definitive ending in D3 (likely including K's death in one form or another).

Edit to add: here's a link to thistlepong's most recent post about a new trilogy: According to what the linked post (on reddit) claims, Pat specifically indicated that there will be no more books avout Kvothe. However, without hearing the exact question and the exact answer, it's hard to say (Pat is incredibly slippery about how he answers questions...)
Andrew Loyd
171. DoYouHas
Has it already been considered that Kvothe doesn't even have Caesura anymore? It is likely that Kvothe had to return it to the Adem as a necessary part of faking his death if he still had it at that point.

Sorry if this is repetition, I scanned for it in a couple other threads, but the comments aren't easy to navigate for specific things unless you have read them all at some point.
Adam S.
172. MDNY
I never understood why people are so convinced that the story has to progress beyond what we've seen. Why does Kvothe's story need a conclusion beyond him ending as the innkeeper Kote? From the beginning, we've been told that this is a tragedy. What I like about the story is watching that tragedy unfold, learning about the world of 4C and the characters as we do. I could be wrong, and in the end K will regain his powers/open the box/die/ all of the above. But I don't see why so many people assume that K's story is not over. Just because Bast doesn't want it to be? Because we, the readers, admire Kvothe and want him to return to his past glory, warts and all? I tend to take what he said at the beginning of his tale at face value, and accept that it is a tragedy, in which we already know the end, just not how it ended there.
John Graham
173. JohnPoint
DoYouHas @171:
It's certainly a possibility, and makes a lot of sense to me. I don't know that we have anything specific to go on either way, other than Kvothe's comment "That is not...Kaysera."

The only real possibility I see that Kvothe wouldn't have returned it would be if either a) the Adem know about or are involved with the fake, or b) have some "magical" means of keeping track of swords. Neither of these is supported by the text (nor are they contradicted, either).

MDNY @172: That's also what Pat has indicated (that the story is a tragedy, and that he wanted to tell the story of a hero sitting in a bar, reliving past glory, fading away). So, the story could well end with exactly what we see at the beginning: Kote, in the bar in Newarre. The primary reason to think there will be something slightly more than that is the amount of foreshadowing in the frame, and layout of the story: it leads us to believe that there is more happening than just the story that Kvothe is telling Chronicler.
174. NateHawk
(In advance, I'd like to apologize if this is duplication/already came up.)

I've been re-reading the books again and I just reviewed WMF Chp. 18 - Wine and Blood. This chapter was very interesting to me due to the Denna's mentioning of a different kind of magic:

"What if someone told you they knew a type of magic that did more than that? A magic where you sort of wrote things down, and whatever you wrote became true... Then, if someone saw the writing, even if they couldn't read it, it would be true for them. They'd think a certain thing, or act a certain way depending on what the writing said." WMF P.177

This sort of idea does not show up in NW or WMF again, so this leads me to believe that PR purposefully interjected this tidbit in here to forshadow another kind of magic.

As he said on his blog, there are 10 types of magics in the 4C universe. 1-6 were already mentioned, with a 7th already hinted at, yet not explained. Could this be the 7th type of magic PR was talking about?

Building on that theory, we have a reason to believe that Denna may have this type of magic.

"Your braid," I clarified. "It almost says Lovely." WMF P.1109

Then Denna proceeds to overreact, taking out the braid after cursing. Kvothe then says that he "liked it better before ."

1) When did Denna learn Yllish story knots? Almost nobody knows story knots anymore, and she points out that "you're supposed to read them with your fingers, not by looking at them." How did she come across this information?
2) Why? Why would she put this in her hair? Why would she want a sign in her hair telling others that she is lovely?

My theory is that Denna DOES have the aforementioned magic of writing down something and having others believe it. We know that Denna is lovely. We know she is chased by all kinds of men. What if she is beautiful partially because of her ability to change others' perceptions of her?

There is also a lot of mentioning of Yllish story knots throughout the story, wether through the Box or while Sim, Wil, Fela and Kvothe are in the Archives (I can't find the page/chapter). Technically, the knots are a type of writing, which would tie into this theory.

In short: I believe Denna has this magic of writing something down and becoming reality for the one who reads it. This is the 7th magic that PR mentioned in his post. And there may be more to come from this kind of magic in D3. Thank you all for reading this long-winded post :)
Adam Price
175. Zuphlas
Natehawk: I believe that's something people have discussed before, and while I think not everyone's convinced and opinion's still divided on exactly how it would work, that was more or less what I took it to be.

Re your questions:
1 - From memory, Denna sends Kvothe letters from Yll (of which he gets one), and was there with her patron. So she's been there, and I assumed that was where she learned. Although if her patron knew, then he could presumably have taught her anywhere.

2 - Remember that Denna gets by on her looks in various ways. Having a magical way of enhancing what people think of you could only help there. And even if it's not specifically magical when done in her hair,she could just consider it to be a sort of good luck charm for her - besides, it seemed to me that having a hidden language out in the open without anyone realising it was something that would amuse Denna.
Carl Banks
177. robocarp

Just a nitpick: the idea does show up in WMF again, albeit in the form of a jest. Remember that K tried to start a rumor about the famous "Chronicler", where whatever he wrote would become the truth?

That is, perhaps, a slight suggestion that Denna isn't using such magic. If K had found out that Denna was using this magic on him, would he joke about it so freely?

But if you ask me, I think either Denna is doing this magic, or PR (or Kote) wants us to think she is. There are too many small things for it to be a coincidence.
chris schorr
178. chrisss811
I think she manipulates him with her knots. After Kvothe tells the rumors about the "famous chronicler", he said that he hates it or that he have a problem when people are trying to manipulate him.
179. e2point718
StevenHalter: Consider adding some coverage of the influence of semitic languages? Rothfuss is familiar with Hebrew to some extent (Ruach, for example), Semitic roots that emphasize consonants over vowels (shoresh) and Jewish culture (names have power, using workarounds like hashem to refer to names that cannot be spoken or written)

Yllish fascinates me. Its knots seem to work the same way that TehPesinAruFehrish runes do. Whether it is related to Faenish and/or TehPesinAruFehrish would be interesting tofind out. Sadly, there is very little Yllish outside of Cyae tsien. I wonder whether TehPesinAruFehrish is essentially Ruachish, and the age of both languages ties back to some original speaking mastery.

Finally I'm pretty sure that Te in Faenish means "You" and I'm not convinced that "Tehus antausa eha" starts with the name Tehlu. (I live in the Jax/Jakiss and Tehlu/Lockless or Moonlock camp without any reason beyond that it's fun)
Ryan Murray
180. TheYllest
I'm hoping Jo opens a new thread about this subject soon, but before then, you should all read "How Old Holly Came to Be" from the Unfettered anthology, a PR short story set in the 4C with some very interesting tidbits about the world and its history. It is also a beautifully written story. I don't want to comment on the content yet for those who haven't read.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
181. SwordOfMidAfternoon
@ 5/6/7 From Hemme's hot-foot to Ambrose's mommet attacks on Kvothe, to the bandit battle.... the ease with which those would-be very harmful-to-deadly attacks were carried out makes me wonder why there aren't more sympathy trouble-makers out there. It seems like someone with even a rudimentary understanding & ability could cause some serious trouble. With such powers at their disposal, I can't believe that the actions of a few Caudicus's or Ambrose's (or even Kvothe's) haven't led to the utter destruction of the university. It is mentioned repeatedly how much mortal harm could be inflicted by an arcanist with only a drop of blood... seems like anyone with a vendetta to settle need only acquire an arcanist with an accommodating conscience..... With such power I would expect arcanists to 'go bad' on a fairly regular basis.

Another thing on Sympathy & Kvothe... can he or can he not create sympathetic bindings? He can't seem to light a fire in a calm state or under duress.... but, he seemingly can cause glass bottles to shatter, as he did early on in one of his first chats with Chronicler in the Waystone.
Carl Banks
182. robocarp

I can't come up with anything for why there isn't more malefeance other than suspension of disbelief. During the Aturan Empire, when arcanists were highly prone to be considered witches and persecuted, I could see it. 200-some years after the empire fell it's hard to believe, even if there is a great taboo against it. You'd figure some arcanists (not just Kvothe) would be unconstrained by taboo, others in desperate situations. Best explanation I can think of is that the singers and Sithe will get to them sooner or later.

The Chancellor tells Kvothe that not two centuries ago (I think) arcanists would be burned, and that's why malefeance was so frowned upon. But what if that was a red herring? What if the real reason arcanists were burned is because they knew too much? It would fit into the empire's penchant for censoring certain knowledge.

Maybe Gibea's medical experiments were to find "non-magical" cures for diseases, so that demand for magic cures would be lessened, and perhaps the magic would be forgotten.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
183. SwordOfMidAfternoon
Precisely... It seems like the only preventive measures against malfeasance (and worse.. see bandit camp escapades) is the belief that it is very naughty and would make the Arcanum look bad.

Interesting thought of the Sithe/Singers as park rangers in the wilderness of magic. If that's the case, they must be woefully short-staffed. How Kvothe can stroll up to a/the Ctheah (not sure if Ctheah get a definite or indefinite article... do we have any clue as to how many there are? If it is more than one, I can't imagine there being many...), have a little chat, and then go about his business is most curious. If the chief purpose of the Sithe is to prevent entities from contacting the Ctheah... that performance doesn't leave me overly confident in their effectiveness...

With the number of persons familiar with sympathetic bindings being churned out by the University, the law of averages dictates that at least some of those persons will wind up in unfortunate/desperate straits where taboos against malfeasance go right out the window.
Wallace Forman
184. WallaceForman
@180 On your recommendation I read "How Old Holly Came to Be." It's hard to make out much from the story, but here are some preliminary thoughts (in white). The story has no particular charm of its own, and since I'm not able to learn anything from it about the 4C, I can't really recommend buying it to others.

The story is about a tree, a holly tree, and "the lady", who comes and goes from the tree. (Or multiple ladies?) The some obvious associations the story would invite is with the holly boughs in WMF (dicussing holly crowns worn by the Sithe while hunting skin-dancers) and the other trees important in the KKC. The "Singing Tree" of the Tahl, the Adem's sword tree, Aethe's tree, and the Cthaeh's tree stand out as important trees, particularly the last. Other parts of the story vaguely suggest shaping. A shadowy creature that might be Haliax makes an appearance.

Holly grows near a tower, and at various points in the story, holly (more holly, or the same holly?) is made to grow around or near that tower. Holly is described as being the only tree in the area, and at some point the tower disappears, and only the old holly appears to remain. This line from WMF is also interesting:

“In the stories I’ve heard,” Kote said, “holly traps them in a body, too.”

So we might want to draw associations between Holly and Cthaeh's tree. I am firmly in the Cthaeh=Selitos camp. The story could describe the metamorphosis of Selitos's tower into a tree, all alone, a holly tree binding something (Selitos, in the tree itself?). Old Holly also becomes a man, so that he is both tree and man, whatever that means.

But there are too many problems with this particular association. The Cthaeh's tree has blue flowers and no mention of red berries, suggesting it is not a holly tree (which, Wikipedia informs me, have greenish-white flowers). A stream passes by Old Holly, but none is mentioned near the Cthaeh's tree. There are no characters in the story that seem to correspond to the Cthaeh itself, except perhaps holly itself. The Cthaeh denies that it is a tree, however.

What other character parallels can we draw? There is a lady at the the tree, who builds a garden, then a man comes, then both leave and the garden disappears, then a lady comes to the tree again, cries, leaves, comes back, builds a garden, hangs out around the tree, sings, reads, and climbs. Then there are unnatural demons. Fire-breathing wolves, bird men, and one shadowy man-shaped creature. Holly kills or wounds all the demons. Then the woman leaves. The garden and tower disappear, but not holly.

Is the battle with the demons the creation war? The death of Encanis? Are the man and lady Lanre and Lyra? Maybe, but there is really no way to know. The details are scant, as Rothfuss has told the story from the standpoint of a not very observant tree. Nothing recognizable as a skin dancer appears in the story.

Well, if someone can make some sense of the story, I'd be glad to hear it, but I won't hold my breath.
Jo Walton
185. bluejo
WallaceForman, Yllest: I've got nothing. I bought it hoping to do a post on it as you suggested, but really I can't. I wouldn't have been able to tell it was a 4C story without being told externally. Also, it's not so much a story as a poem with the line breaks taken out. I'm not saying this is a bad thing -- I've done the same myself. Some people are short story writers and some are novel and poem writers, and it's pretty clear that Pat is the latter.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
186. SwordOfMidAfternoon
To any proponents of the Cinder=Bredon theory...

the Ctheah says Kvothe only met Cinder twice. He saw Bredon many times.
thistle pong
187. thistlepong

I've had some thoughts on it, but I'm not confident in my ability to properly white out my text given my experience with the timeline.
Ryan Murray
188. TheYllest
While there is nothing concrete in this story, there is plenty to speculate on, which is why I brought it up in this thread. The story doesn't advance the tale of Kvothe in anyway, but adds to the mythos of the 4C.

While the story is very short, I have quite a few thoughts on this poem/short story. It may be me looking too deeply, but I see alot to sink my teeth into. When I have some time, I will try ot put them all together into something cohesive.
John Graham
189. JohnPoint
Re "Old Holly"

My copy should be arriving any day, and I look forward to reading it.

Since it's not part of KKC, perhaps a separate post would be in order (still within the reread, but titled something like "gleaning from other 4C stories"). Jo, I know that you indicated that you don't have much to say about it at this time, but you wouldn't have to say much in the post, mostly just briefly summarize it and lead into discussion. Opening another post with a spoiler warning would allow people to post ideas without worrying about inadvertantly spoiling anything for anyone.
Wallace Forman
190. WallaceForman

Whiting out appears to work for me when I quick post, but not when I preview what I've posted.
Steven Halter
191. stevenhalter
The safest white out process is: 1) write your comment 2) Hit preview 3) Apply white color 4) post. This seems to always work.

I've read Old Holly now and would agree that it is more on the poetic form than prose side. Knowing that it was set in the 4C, there are some guesses I could make like:

Lady seems to clearly be a shaper.

but I'll wait until we agree that either a suitable amount of time or a suitable post appear to not have discussions in white out.
Steven Halter
192. stevenhalter
Also, if you post and find that the text isn't whited then editting, whitening and then post work.
Steven Halter
193. stevenhalter
194. Takshash
@191: If I hadn't been told that the story was set in 4C it'd be an amazing poem. However, with that knowledge, some of the word choices take on much more weighted meanings.

"...Old Holly..." read like one more night around the campfire Kvothe, Tempi, Dedan, Hespe, and Marten.

The most important bit, it seemed to me, was that as The Lady shaped, she sang. Always singing as she was changing. I believe we have our first definitive glimpse of one of the singers.

Just one more tiny piece of the mythos of the 4C. Another honest lie.
195. Ace101
Jo, just want to say thanks - spent the past two weeks going through the entire reread and I love it- I appreciate you putting in the time in what was clearly a labor of love.
Ashley Fox
196. A Fox
!! Have only just seen this, er, new post. Shall commence catch up anon, tho is it all safe now? I've not read the Old Holly story...And I'm going to pre-empt with an apology for the abrupt subject change here:

I've been researching of late (working on my own world-building) and my convoluted thought-paths happened to have lead me to Al Jazari and Hero.

Their work on automata and hydraulics relevent here. Well theres a whole lot which has parralels with pre-CW, artificing, the Underthing & four plate door.

Got side tracked for a while considering that the plates on the door may actually be windows for displaying certain data, the room beyound containing the machinery, which one would access with that doors particular key. Think of the displays of the Antikethera machine. Only rather than merely data input-output, it actually provides co-ordinates. The door opening ** according to the programming.

Then, of course, given the course of the thoughts that had lead to this, my sub'con' displayed the passages re: Manifold Maths, Hespe's story of Jax and the unfolding house, the static-continuum nature of Faen. And wondering that that door, rather than just being some service passage, was actually a cross-dimensional portal.

Symbols of the seasons, solar system & Alchemy, pretty fronts for some impressive knowings.

I also stumbled across this and had to laugh, wondering if Rothfuss was tweaking our noses a bit.

"What Sharkey found was that Hero, who had designed everything from the aeolipile (the world's first steam-engine, see picture above) to "a vending machine that dispensed a shot of holy water in exchange for a coin," had designed a mobile theatre, complete with Dionysus and some female worshippers, all automata, which came in on a sort of self-propelled, self-guided cart. Sharkey saw the similarity to da Vinci's lion at once. But when he looked in Hero's Peri automatopoietikes ("On automata-making"), it became clear: this theatre was actually programmable -- using string for the programming language."

So we have a theatre, programmable machinery & string no less. Wonder if Hero's Dionysus had red hair? In KKC we have the Yllish and their string language, which may very well work in that it *programmes the mind*. Then we have the Ruh and red hair that is mistaken for Yllish (as well as the other linking factors between them.) And of course that chaotic element :)

Any thoughts?

Oh and it did also lead me to wondering if the Locleos box is actually a
machine, alog the lines of the Antiyethera but ussing KKC world 'magic' for powersource. The links with the moon, part of Ludis' name being trapped, may very well be an idicator to the power source.

Which also links in with the tidal quality of Faen.

Perhaps the Yllish is instructions on its use, a remote control or data display device re. the doorway machinery between 4C's & Faen?
jum bles
197. jumbles
Hi, I just joined the site to take part in these rereads. I've read everything (posts and comments) up through part way through part 7 of The Wise Man's Fear reread. I got impatient though (there's so much) so I'm going to post now. I do still plan on reading it all. Just wanted to put some ideas out there. Apologies in advance if these have already been said.

1) I think the Eolian may have been destroyed, possibly by Kvothe. In NotWc54, after Stanchion says he could use someone else with Illien's fire, Kvothe says he needs a place to burn. In reference to thinking he hadn't won his pipes, K narrated that "the earth would crack and swallow this glittering, self-important place before I would show a trace of despair" (NotWc56). K certainly seems to show despair in the frame, so couldn't that mean the Eolian is gone?

2) I think the "door that holds the flood" could be a dam that keeps the Lackless door underwater

3) I think Puppet is likely one of the human Amyr. Felurian says that human Amyr "sound like children dressing in their parents' clothes" (WMFc99). Puppet is described as "grinning like a child playing dress-up in his parents' clothes" (WMFc40).

4) From WMFc2:
On his first hand he wore rings of stone,
Iron, amber, wood, and bone.
There were rings unseen on his second hand.
One was blood in a flowing band.
One of air all whisper thin,
And the ring of ice had a flaw within.
Full faintly shone the ring of flame.
And the final ring was without name.
From NotWc28:
... and wings tore from their backs that they might go where they wished. Wings of fire and shadow. Wings of iron and glass. Wings of stone and blood.
Seems like every set of wings can be matched with one of Kvothe's rings. Fire, iron, stone, and blood are explicitly mentioned. Ice with a flaw withing could actually be a glass ring. The ring without name could match up with the wings of shadow; there are multiple references to the nameless void, I could see shadow and void being linked.

5) In WMFc73, Kvothe compares a name to a key. Perhaps his name is the third key he needs to open his thrice-locked chest.

6) I think I saw that Blac of Drossen Tor has already been associated with Lady Lackless's black dress on this site. To add evidence, in the Spanish translation, I believe "black dress" becomes "negro vestido," and "Blac of Drossen Tor" becomes "Nagra de Vessten Tor."

7) Chronicler mentions a rumor that there is a new Chandrian with red hair. We know that "Grey Dalcenti never speaks," and silence is always around Kote (especially in the prologues and epilogues).

8) Abenthy may teach Kvothe Yllish knots. After his troupe is killed, Kvothe dreams that Abenthy teaches him "impossibly complex" sailors' knots. Yll is an island so it makes sense that they would be sailors.

9) Hespe thinks of Taborlin's cloak "as a dirty grey. Sort of washed out from his being on the road all the time" (WMFc83). Kvothe thinks of it "like a quilt. Made entirely out of patchwork, a bunch of diferent colored rags and scraps" (WMFc83). Bast at one point wraps "a rag blanket around his shoulders like a shawl. It was a chaos of ill-matching fabric and faded color except for a bright red heart sewn squarely in the center" (WMFc151). Does Bast have Taborlin's cloak? Or is it at least meant to remind us of it?

10) I know Felurian's power being like wings has already been mentioned on here in connection with angels. But also like angels, men can't see her without great peril. And Felurian was in Murella, a city mentioned in Skarpi's first story.

11) Possible hints about the meanings of El'the and Gilthe:
"I am. I see. I know. At times I speak" (WMFc104). So "Knower" and "Be-er" are possibilities.
Jax's tools. Glasses for seeing, Flute for speaking, Folding House for shaping, Box for locking. So "Shaper" and "Locker" are possibilities.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
198. SwordOfMidAfternoon
I'm not sure I agree with any of the above #1-#11 items. Very, very tenuous connections at best. A lot of lateral connections being made to items with no known relation at all...

Combine known things to form conclusions... in some instances you seem to be forming conclusions and then trying to force combinations of evidence to support them.

Had Abenthy instructed K in Yllish knots or other forms of Yllish communication, wouldn’t that have dawned on Kvothe when he began studying under Master Whats-his-name? Kvothe himself said he didn’t absorb the sailor’s knots instruction anyways. So even if it secretly was Yllish story knots, he didn’t learn anything from it.

Speaking of tenuous connections at best...

On Kvothe having killed an angel... I pressume that means he did find the Amyr, and through some unfortunate turn of events ended up killing one of the original Amyr mentioned in Skarpi's 2nd story. Probably not Selitos, almost certainly not Tehlu but perhaps Kirel, Deah, Enlas, Geisa, Lecelte, Ordal, or Andan?

Perhaps one of them went after Denna for her pro-Lanre song, and Kvothe tried to defend her? I get the distinct impression that she is dead from Kvothe's fury tinged bitterness and Bast's reference to having seen her... speaks as if it's something that could've only taken place in the past because she is no longer alive in the present.

Tenuous, but less crack-pot than others.
jum bles
199. jumbles
Well yes, they are all of course tenuous. And not all of them were attempting to form conclusions, #s 4 & 10 were just pointing out possible similarities (I certainly don't believe Felurian is an angel).

I used future tense for Abenthy and the Yllish knots, so it would be book 3 if it all. That one particularly is very, very tenuous. I almost decided not to include it in my post at all.

And regarding forming conclusions first and then forcing evidence to it: I'm just trying to think of as many possibilities as I can and see what people say for or against them. The only items up there that I feel really attached to are numbers 3 and 6.
Jeremy Raiz
200. Jezdynamite
Hey Jumbles

Welcome to the discussion.

I really like your thoughts and angles. My favorites of your points are 3 and 6 as well.

I also like number 2, but I lean more towards "the flood" being an influx of invading or trapped creatures. Another thought after doing a wiki search; a flood could also refer to magma instead of water (which I'd never considered before).
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
201. SwordOfMidAfternoon
Yes... from what we've learned of copper, and it's anti-sympathy/anti-arcanist nature, leads me to believe that like the copper lining at the looney bin, the copper door(s) is/are preventing someone - or even their influence - from passing. That is the flood i have in my mind.
202. Nameless
I liked the comparisson of the rings and the wings. In a way a ring of glass would be unseen as well. But there is no real fit to the descriptions of the unssen rings.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
203. SwordOfMidAfternoon
On Ctheah & Chandrian –
I recall someone suggesting that the Cteath and Chandrian are opposing forces in the world… stemming largely from the Ctheah’s musings on perhaps wanting to exact revenge on Cinder. I disagree. From what we know of the Ctheah, it’s interactions with other persons are few… when such a chance does arise, the Ctheah must make the most of it. The Ctheah was not using Kvothe to attack Cinder… it was using Cinder to attack Kvothe…
The Cinder comment notwithstanding, while they (Cinder/Chandrian & Ctheah) may not share similar ultimate goals, their interests do seem to overlap from time to time. Both are declared enemies of the Sithe, both seem to promote war/destruction/social upheaval.
It could conceivably be a situation where there is no relation at all and each of the 3 (Sithe, Ctheah, Chandrian) oppose the other two…. But that doesn’t seem right to me. Are the Ctheah a race, or is it a lone entity? My best guess is that there are a few of them. If there is only one, and the Sithe are charged with guarding it, how on Earth could Kvothe stroll up, have a nice chat, and leave – without any difficulty whatsoever?
------Going back to my previous comment on angel slayings… Kvothe did not seem to appreciate the significance of his interaction with the Ctheah, I think we can rule out one of the Sithe as the ‘angel’ which Kvothe slays.
Alf Bishai
204. greyhood
Jo: can't you just ask him when D3 is happening already?
205. pbatt
118, 171 (this thread); SpecSum17 in general

Re: Kvothe not having Caesura anymore.

It seems possible that Kvothe saw Caesura's true name to be Caesura (naming), thus predicting that it would kill Roderic, or that Kvothe renamed (naming? shaping?) Saicere into Caesura, thus ensuring that it would kill Roderic, but that it was not actually his hand that wielded it.

How this might look:

Caesura is stolen/lost from Kvothe, and one of the Usual Suspects uses it to slay Roderic. Some parties know that it was Kvothe's sword, and this is used as the evidence that makes him a "Kingkiller" in the eyes of the public. He could have even been "framed." (ha! get it?) This would also explain his own ownership of the KK title, since he would feel responsible for either losing or, worse (worse = more likely?), renaming Caesura. The financial/legal "arrangements" made to return the sword to Ademre would likely implicate him, even if his stewardship of the sword was not well known.


Someone-not-kvothe kills Roderic using Caesura, but K is not fingered. Kvothe then publicly kills Roderic's successor (Prince Regent? Ambrose? Maer? How does inheritance work in Vintas?) or a different king altogether publicly, and so is publicly given the KK title/bounty, etc.

Both of these have considerable amount of leeway in reconciling who all is dead, who the penitent king is (and how he became king and how he became penitent), who kvothe kills, and how he bought and paid for the name King Killer.

Within these possibilities, I would lean towards the ones that leave two kings dead (Whichever two are king and in front of the Maer in succession by that time), with Kvothe having been framed (or scapegoated, if already thought dead) for one and having directly killed the other, perhaps even before the news of the successor's elevation had spread (cobblestones in Imre).
Carl Banks
206. robocarp
207. Starling
Hi. Long time lurker here. I'm not sure I've seen anything like this, but what if Kvothe manages to open the lockless box and when releasing the name inside, it takes part of his name? It would cut his name like a cut flower and thus his withering away?
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
208. SwordOfMidAfternoon
So a comment regarding "ravel/ravelling" in WiseMan'sFear, which I'm sure many have noticed before, Sleat uses the word "ravel" to describe K's lowly Ruh birth, " respect for your betters, which is practically everyone given your lowly ravel birth."

Of course words have many meanings... but at the least this is a rare example of how the base word ravel is used in 4C's. Better than nothing... but I'm sure most of you have noticed this already.
thistle pong
209. thistlepong
I found something both interesting and exciting in Pat's latest blog post about conventions and signings. It's one thing to be pretty sure you've found something in a text and quite another to get anything close to confirmation from the author.
Here’s my schedule for Gencon as it stands right now, that way you’ll have a much easier time catching me when I’m at the booth, doing a panel, etc.

GenCon Indy

Thursday, August 15th
12-1:45 Signing at the booth
2PM The Art of Storytelling – Moderator ICC Room 245
3PM Dynamic Characters ICC Room 245
5PM Literary Alchemy ICC Room 245
*emphasis mine
Steven Halter
210. stevenhalter
That would be an interesting panel. If anyone here is going to Comic Con SD, and goes to any of these, a report would be awesome.
John Graham
211. JohnPoint
Hmm, interesting. I second Steven's hope that someone is going and will post a report.

The way I see it, it could go one of two ways:

1) it could be about using alchemy in literature: symbology, alchemical colors, references, etc. (as per thistle's thoughts and analysis in the last several months). Alternatively, I could see Pat going with:

2) it could be about alchemy of literature: spinning tales out of words, literary straw into literary gold, the "magic" of turning words into story.

Either of these could be a really interesting panel, and both seem to have his vibe. It will be interesting to see what his intent was when naming it -- names, after all, are important and are best when they have several meanings at a few different depths...
Ashley Fox
212. A Fox
But then what is literature but a respresntation of knowledge and the pursuit of such?

The idea of teaching it, I must say, amuses the hell out of me given the highly indivualistic way such symolism was used...percieved.

213. aethel
Not going to SDCC but I'll be at Gen Con and have a ticket to Literary Alchemy (and the evening with Rothfuss panel). Keep in mind there are other authors on the LA panel too, so it won't be the Pat show. I've been to several of his writing panels between Origins and last year's gen con, and most of the things he says in panels targeted to aspiring writers are the same things he says in his blog.

But if any interesting tidbits come up that are at least new info to me, I'll post them here (like I did in 121). I also strongly advise anyone who hangs on his every word (like me -_- ) to listen to the uploads of the albino dragon hangouts. Some interesting stuff in there too.
Ashley Fox
215. A Fox

Is this true, or, no?
thistle pong
218. thistlepong
spurious connection playhouse presents a tenuous connection between A Fox's comments regarding the Holly and Oak kings (sum16.173) and "How Old Holly Came to Be"

as a fan of what Pat's done structurally with the books, i found the unrevised story a bit flat, but there is enough imagery to evoke ghostly echoes of stuff we've seen... i kind of like the possibility of a more traditional connection as well
Carl Banks
219. robocarp
Just a weird thought I'm throwing up here. I had wondered if the vowel cluster "ae" was an attribute Faerie speech. At first glance it seemed reasonable: Felurian's song and some Fae langauge examples have -ae as a word ending, so I wondered if the vowel cluster "ae" was a clue that this was related to faeries.

At first glance, it's promising. Some words that include "ae" are Fae, Mael, Scrael, the Cthaeh, Chaen-dian, Ciridae. And, most interestingly, the one line of Yllish we get. However, I've seen enough examples that aren't connected to Faeries (or so we think) to be doubtful: aerlevsedi (Eld Vintic?), Aethe, Maedre, Caesura, etc. At least some uses of "ae" are simply meant to sound exotic (not from the Temic family), and so you can't really conclude anything.
220. leafonthewind
When I think about Bast's motivations, it seems strange that he would be so concerned about Kvothe. Aren't the fae supposed to be completely unconcerned by human problems? The only two motivations I can think of are:

1. Bast is Kvothe's son (with Felurian). This is why Bast is so consumed with Kvothe "remembering" his true self; Bast wants Kvothe to remember that fact. Perhaps that was why Felurian was so insistant that Kvothe return to her - she was carrying his son. When Kvothe leaves, Felurian insists that he return in more of a vulnerable way than her previous arrogant, demanding way.

2. Or, Kvothe killed Bast's father (a king?) and Kvothe no longer remembers that fact. Bast wants Kvothe to remember before he takes his revenge on Kvothe.

Also, in the chest, maybe Kvothe locked away both his name as well as the knowledge of how to open the third box, out of protection for what would happen if he regained his name. Kvothe seems to be only half-heartedly trying to open the box, maybe because of some residual memory that opening it would be bad.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
221. SwordOfMidAfternoon
I don't detect the malevolence that #2 would require.
#1 would be neat, but even with the different passages of time, has enough time elapsed? I wouldn't think so. #1 has a better chance of being correct than #2, though.

Bast being attached to Kvothe in some odd teacher/student relationship to 'learn' reminds me of Dunk & Egg from ASOIAF. With Bast as Egg & Kvothe as Dunk. Bast's father, being a wise fellow, sent his son to be Kvothe's "squire" in a sense... out to learn the ways of the mortal world.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
222. SwordOfMidAfternoon
While Lackless lands are in Vintas presently.... do we know for a fact that their ancestral lands have always been in the same region?

Any chance that the University/Imre region could be those ancestral lands? How many secret magic doors without handles or locks can there be in the 4C's?
thistle pong
223. thistlepong

A couple folks have proposed that, but it's not supported in any meaningful way by the text. At least nobody's found anything, yet. You're suggesting holdings as vast as the entire Aturan Empire, something notable enough that it should have been mentioned already.

Valaritas has keyholes. Thus, presumably, locks.
224. leafonthewind

But the fact that Bast is of the fae makes his emotion regarding Kvothe very unusual. Why would Bast care so much? He wouldn't have the normal awe for a teacher that a typical student would have. There is some secret behind his concern for Kvothe, mark my words.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
225. SwordOfMidAfternoon
I imagine there is indeed some reason for the concern, and I imagine it ties in very closely with why Bast is with him to begin with. Clearly something Kvothe did in the years between his return to the University covered at the end of Day 2, and the Interlude time, convinced some faen authority figure (Bast's father/guardian?) that Bast would benefit greatly from being Kvothe's "apprentice" of sorts in the mortal lands.

I can't see anything that would even slightly suggest the malevolence required for this to be some vendetta... some kanly, to use the old word. I see geniune concern... everything from the guarding while asleep to the healing of the broken tooth to the alarm of the the Ctheah encounter...

Clearly Kvothe had some grand adventure that involved a substantial cross over into the fae... I'd bet it has something to do with one or more secret doors and some large grey stones shaped into an arch.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
226. SwordOfMidAfternoon
@ 174 on Denna's possible abilities ...

I was flipping through the WMF looking for a quote when I came upon the Severen chapter where he meets up with Denna there for the second (or first? or third? cant recollect...) time... she is playing with her hair, and when she realizes that part of it was braided, she undoes the braid with an unusual haste.

I wonder what it said.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
227. SwordOfMidAfternoon
Again when he takes Denna up to the gardens, she does something similar… Kvothe says “ If I were trying to seduce you, this is not how I’d go about it.”
“Is that so?” she says, and idly began twining her hair into a braid… then she caught herself, and quickly brushed it out.

I never noticed these things before.
Steven Halter
228. stevenhalter
SwordOfMidAfternoon:Yep, we're generally agreeing (strongly suspecting) that Denna is writing things in Yllish (or like magical script) in her hair.
Ashley Fox
229. A Fox
Sword' & Leaf re Bast&'K's relationship. I'm still rather fond of y theiry that Bast is a manifestation of K's sleeping mind. Ramson steel and all that. Bast's twilight characteristics, it could be argued, is the influence of Felurian's Name/Power being so closely interwoven with the event that awoke K's sleeping mind the furthest (that we have seen) as demonstrated by the star on his brow.

All very metaphysic, yet the clues are presented alchemically. That juxaposition of types of magic is very Rothfussian; with a twist of wicked humour.

Also I think WMF actually does say to what extent where the Locleos lands. (Within the Maer section I believe.) Basically all the Eld, parts of Vintas to Modeg....maybe small kingdoms? (that last is shakey)
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
230. SwordOfMidAfternoon
@225 - You're quite right.... I found the lackless lands by accident the other day. Caudicus says they were part of Vintas, Modeg, and much of the Small Kingdoms. So much for University/Imre theory. ,,

Also, not that we need more proof of Laurien as N. Lackless, but I also observed that when Kvothe's first meets Meluan he finds her features & face inexplicably familiar. Further support comes shortly thereafter when they establish (as well as anyone could establish in such a brief exchange) that heretofore their paths had never directly crossed.

Meluan's features are similar to her sister's... Who just so happens to have eloped with a "Ruh Bastard" many years ago, and is almost certainly Kvothe's mother.

Nisheeth Pandey
231. Nisheeth
@230, SwordofMidAfternoon:
I believe that the similarity was with Denna.I am quoting from one of thistlepong's post:
The way I look at it, there's roughly equal support for both Laurian and Denna, which I brought up in Part 21. Specific to the way I tend to read are these sets of descriptions. The first is Denna. The second, Meluan.
Her hair was arranged to display her elegant neck to good effect, revealing the emerald teardrop earrings and matching necklace at her throat. Her lips, as always, were red without the aid of any paint. I looked into the deep brown of her eyes.
She was dressed in grey and lavender, and her curling chestnut hair was pulled back to reveal her elegant neck.Her mouth was full and red without the benefit of any paint.Her dark brown eyes were gravely serious.
Bruce Wilson
232. Aesculapius
Hi All! Haven't had time to pst for ages but I try to at least keep up with reading when I can.

@230 SOMA and 223 Thistle:
This was as much info about the extent of the Lackless lands as I had managed to find; I originally posted it in the Lackless summary thread (Speculative Summary Part 5: “Lackless likes her riddle raveling”: Speculations on Lacklesses) but to save time, here it is again:
The first thing that I recalled (that doesn't yet seem to have been covered in detail anywhere else) is the extent of the Family's influence in ancient times and, specifically, how this might link to key locations in K's time. We know from K's first meeting with Caudicus that the Leoclos lands included parts of what are now Vintas, Modeg and a large part of the Small Kingdoms. Later it's also specifically mentioned that they once ruled the "Free City" of Tinue, which they lost or relinquished at some time in the past, following something referred to as "the bloodless revolution."

In and of itself this doesn't add much but looking at the map (for what it's worth...!) it strikes me that that combination of the Small Kingdoms, Northern Vintas, Tinue and part of Modeg pretty much describes all of the Southern, Western and possibly Northern borders of The Eld, not to mention the fact that the Great Stone Road passes smack through the middle of this too.

What might this suggest about the role of House Leoclos in antiquity...?

In the context of our previous speculation about the significance of Tinuë and a possible link to Tinusa from Skarpi's story, perhaps making it the current descendent of the last survivor of the eight ancient cities, is it also important that the Leoclos line was once its ruling House...?
I'm inclined to agree that I can't find a link in the text to anything that includes territory as far West as the the area around Imre and the University but clearly we have evidence that the Lackless line had considerable power and influence in older times. Is there anything in all this that can be cross-referenced to other information about the fate of the one surviving City, the significance of the Great Stone Road, the potential links between the Eld and the Fae, the role of the Lackless family and its various cadet branches...?
Bruce Wilson
233. Aesculapius
Oh, one other thing that occurred to me:

Regarding the Old Holly story, could this be a re-telling from a different viewpoint of the story of Sir Savien Traliard and Aloine, of "love lost and found and lost again"...?

I also still wonder how much that story is a re-working of the much older story of Lanre and Lyra.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
234. SwordOfMidAfternoon
Now I see it everywhere.
Denma: "My patron gives me other things. He knows things I need to know" as she flicked her hair over her shoulder.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
235. SwordOfMidAfternoon
On Bast... Prince of Twilight... this popped to my head when I skimmed over Jealous Moon chapter in WMF... Felurian is titled "Lady of Twilight". That would imply some connection between Bastas and Felurian... if only in place origin/residence in the Fae.

My thoughts went as such - that Bast could well be Kvothe's son... "Reshi" as used, if replaced by "Father", would fit perfectly. Like "Father", "Reshi" seems to be interchangable as both a name and a title, depending on the context in which it is used. It would fit very well.

Then I recalled that Bast was 150 years old, at least. Which made me think he can't be Kvothe's son at all then. (When I first read Name of the Wind, on my first pass I had initially thought that Kvothe was describing Bast AND himself when he said they've been doing such and such for 150 years.)

BUT, Bast is of the fair folk.... and having spent (presumably) most of those years in the Fae, all of those years could have passed in a week of mortal time... I remain uncertain as to how time passes between the two worlds.

So it makes me wonder, Felurian is Lady of Twilight.... Bast is Prince of Twilight... Bast is MUCH younger than Felurian, and was put in Kvothe's safe keeping by someone in the Fae.... so far the only person who would satisfy those requirements is Felurian. Rather than "father" , "Reshi" could mean any other familial name/title... Brother, Cousin, Uncle, Guardian, etc.

So i think we can conclude that Bast is
1. A Noble of the Faen realm of Twilight...
2. Has been assigned to Kvothe by one of the Fae Folk

It just so happens that the only Faen creature who knows Kvothe just so happens to also hail from the Twilight... and just so happened to bed Kvothe for a solid month or two (in Faen time).

I feel that I should point out that I strongly disliked the Bast-as-Felurian's-offspring theory when I first happened upon it. It struck me as another attempt by we the bored readers pining for Day 3 to fabricate connections between unrelated things in a desperate attempt to generate some new thoughts/ideas/entertainment by drawing conclusions from a string of tenuously connected facts...

But after a deal of thought, I find the argument rather compelling and rather convincing.
thistle pong
236. thistlepong

I appreciate you presenting your chain of reasoning. It shows you've taken the time to really dig into the text. We've done so as well and come out somewhat ambivalent on the familial theory.

Anyway, quibbles. One hundred and fifty years, given the rough guesses Kvothe engages in over drinks with Sim and wil, would be 2-3 years in Faen. It doesn't have much impact on your reasoning, but it's worth tinking about.

Your second conclusion is ex nihilo. There's nothing anywhere in the text to suggest Bast was sent, assigned, or otherwise directed to Kvothe by any party, Faen or otherwise.

Folks tend to guess Reshi might mean father to bolster this speculation, but it's not really supposrted by the etymologies other folks have presented for it. It's not evidence so much as a maybe.

For all that, the Twilight connection is notable. Just not convincing.

Unrealted, but interesting; everyone could benefit from the grain-of-saltiness that is TVTropes Stock Epileptic Trees page:

"Things that are frequently proposed in fan theories at a rate disproportionate to their occurrence in actual works of fiction."
George Bracken
237. jorgybear
Probably not the right place for this post, but I thought the last page was where it was most likely to be read. I was baking (yes, guys can bake too) and as I was cracking eggs, I was thinking about the riddle "What kind of box has no lid, no hinges, and no locks? An Egg) and it occurred to me that as Kvothe's mother was a Lackless, one of her eggs would be a lockless box, so Kvothe himself has come out of a Lockless box.
238. zandi
@237 A shadow box also could answer the riddle.
239. zandi
Come to think of it so does a sand box. I'm sure there are others...
Carl Banks
240. robocarp
"In a box, no lid, no locks, Lackless keeps her husband's rocks." That certainly fits with the egg theory.
241. DatBAAST
To anyone who mentioned the "Mael." Incorrect. Bast is of the Telwyth'Mael, a race of the Fae.
Katy Burnside
242. DarlinKaty
Holy crap. An entire thread based on a crackpot noteventheory of mine. Thanks for noticing!
But, before I even read through, can I ask, how the heck do I get notifications on new thread posts in this WHOLE discussion? I think I have subscribed to individual threads that already exist but I completely missed this because I had no idea there were new posts. Help? Anyone?
OK, Now I read the posts. I'm SO freaking EXCITED!!!
Sahi Rioth
243. Sahirioth
@DatBAAST, 241
To anyone who mentioned the "Mael." Incorrect. Bast is of the Telwyth'Mael, a race of the Fae.
Huh? Who mentioned the Mael, and in what context? And where in the books does it say that the Telwyth Mael (spelled without the apostrophe, isn't it?) is a race of Fae, rather than an area or clan or family or some other category?
Ashley Fox
244. A Fox

@Thistle, & you other lovely folk.

RE: Alchemy. Did you look into the Tarot during your ponderings? I happened to be a bit nostalgic the other day and did a reading for myself (dont worry I view it as a good phycological tool for self-assesment, rather than hokey pokeyness :) ).

Anywho. I suspect that K may be on the Fools journey. Tarot is intimately tied up with the Renaissance, the friction between the christian church and seemingly older values of self enlightenment, and Alchemy via Egypt & the Emerald Tablet ect.

(Am I the only one who suspects that some of Newton's early works were not, shall we say, original. But rather based upon documents he found during his pursuit of Alchemy. The Antikythera Machine's clockwork like inner mechanism clearly demonstates that the anciants around the east/Egypt had mathmatical knowledge of the solar system. IE the pin that jolts the circular cog to account for elliptical orbits. Fragments of documents are known today referancing automata ect. It is not unlikely, what with the feud between christian west and muslim east that earlier documents discussing the actual inner workings woud have been stolen and bought by the rich and folk such as Newton. Specially if the person doing the raiding/selling did not know what they were in possesion of (and so not hidden away in the Vatican!).)

Note: The inscription above Apollo's temple at Delphi is "Know Thyself"....sound familiar?

Sorry if this is a bit rambling: I've been trying to answer some questions that have occured to me and have been wading through several thousand years of history and ignorance (mostly my own but an alrming/frustrating amount of actual absence too...if anyone has any links plz share!). My dislike of the one-god religions has certainly grown, such a regressive force for humanity.
245. Brewer
I feel that I have to stand up for science here...

First, wasn't the Antikythera Greek? Either way, it had a clever way of approximating the solar and lunar calendars, but no notion of WHY the celestial bodies moved the way they do.
Newton invented calculus, which he used to mathematically determine the origin of the elliptical orbits. He literally wrote the book that underpinned the whole of physics for the next two centuries! Not to mention pioneering the study of optics. So yes, I would hope that you are the only person who is suspicious of his achievements.

Back on topic...something that puzzled me about the books...

I don't have my copy to hand, but I think it is right at the beginning of WMF, part of the description of the 3 silences, Bast (most likely, though not explicitly) is described sneaking down into the cellar of the inn while everyone is still sleeping. It is immediately forgotten about, never to be mentioned again. What is the relevance to the story? Has this been discussed?
thistle pong
246. thistlepong

It's okay, Newton, even dead, can defend himself. I think A Fox is just musing about his alchemical pursuits and writings, comprising some million words, which tend to surprise folks who think he created modern science in a vacuum.

Anyway, on to your on topic puzzler...

Bast sneaks into the Waystone in the Prologue because he's returning from making the deal with the soldiers who rob Kote near the end of the book. That's the practical reason. The literary reason is that he has to be coming in from outside in the Prologue because he's outside in the Epilogue. Incidentally you can hear him killing those same mercenaries at the end.

It's part of how a ring composition works. You can follow it through the whole book. I did a post on chaters 2 and 151 awhile back. Another example is bast's search for elderberry liquor in chapter 1 and finally getting it in chapter 152.

It also hearkens back to the opening of NW where he comes up from downstairs at the beginning of the narrative.

A Fox@ 244

I did take a look at the Tarot, but not what you'd call a close or a good look. Alchemy had a kind of steep learning curve and a bunch of educational side quests. I think there's Tarot imagery in there?

Cob's Taborlin story almost shouts about it. He takes the Fool's step at the beginning of the first story we hear. But I don't know if the Tarot's limited to Taborlin. The rest of the Arcana are sprinkled through the text, but not necessarily in order. And they're kind of, I dunno, common.

I don't know enough. There are multiple traditions. I don't remember if Pat's said anything about Tarot.
Steven Halter
247. stevenhalter
I've been reading "The Foundations of Newton's Alchemy" by B.J.T Dobbs recently and the whole area of Newton and alchemy is really interesting. The book also provides a nicely researched view of alchemy in general at that point in time.
The Antikythera Machine is also really interesting. It seems to have realized the motions of the moon as developed by Hipparchus' epicyclic model. Newton would have been well aware of Hipparchus' work but not, of course, of the Antikythera machine. Amusingly, I've had cause to be reading about all of these things for another project at which I've been looking unrelated to this discussion.
Kepler actually came up with the notion that planets moved in elliptical orbits. Newton explained why they did so.
It wouldn't be surprising at all to find alchemical symbolism influencing tarot symbolism.
248. Brewer

Thanks for the response. I agree that Bast has every reason to be sneaking into the inn (though the literary symmetry was lost on me). But why sneak into the basement? The passage deliberately describes where he is going, he could just as easily have been arbitrarily sneaking through the inn. The basement is an odd place to sneak to.
Nisheeth Pandey
249. Nisheeth
re: Bast sneaking to the basement:
I thought that he was sneaking to the basement to look for elderberry wine (or whatever he was looking for, don't exactly remember), and didn't want to wake Kvothe up.
thistle pong
250. thistlepong

I figured he was trying not to wake Kote. /shrug
251. FalconGK81
Hello! I've read the whole reread and wanted to jump in with something I've picked up on that is worth considering.

During the QA with PR, there was this interesting exchange:

What happened to Sovoy?
He lives on a farm out in the country now. He's happy there. He has plenty of room to run and play.

When I first read that, I took it as a "he's unimportant to the story, so he's not around anymore". But, if that were the case, I think PR would have just said that, and not been so silly. Usually when he gives these sorts of responses it's because the question touches on something he doesn't want to answer. When I thought about it some more, it looked more like a "I'm going to say something silly in response because answering would be a spoiler" response.

Later, when I was listening to NotW (I have the books in audio form) there was something that caught my attention. The lines, which sounded almost throwaway, got me thinking. In Chapter 44, when Sovoy is leaving to go out with a lady we get this:

"Sovoy smiled. His teeth were very white and straight".

In other places in the story, Denner resin addicts (sweet-eaters) are described as having teeth that are abnormally white. So, when I heard this, I decided to see if there were other clues that this might be something to pay attention to. So I went back and paid attention to Sovoy, and came up with this list of relevant characteristics.

1) He gets high tuitions, meaning his performance in school is not going well.
2) He seems to be a bit of a playboy (goes out with ladies alot, is seen once at the Eolian)
3) He has had money issues to the point of having to pawn possessions (despite being noble, which you would think would make him above this sort of money trouble, such as Ambrose)
4) He seems to have mood swings.
5) He vanishes from the story with no explanation.
6) Very white teeth.

I think Sovoy is gonna turn up eventually as a Sweet-eater. Of course this is just speculation, but something I thought I might be able to contribute to the discussion. Cheers!
George Bracken
252. jorgybear
@ FalconGK81

I took Pat’s answer relating to Sovoy to mean that he’s dead. The things Pat said are the sorts of things you tell a child about a pet that died. I do, having read your evidence, agree with your conclusion that he is (or was) a sweet eater. However, I think it likely that this habit led to his death. I will concede that if this was the case, his disappearance would have been mentioned, even in passing...
Sahi Rioth
253. Sahirioth
When is the last time Sovoy is "seen"? When is he last mentioned? And when would we expect him to pop up again, but he doesn't?

Don't get me wrong, I agree it's odd that he's just out of the picture all of a sudden, but he wasn't really an important character to begin with, was he? I mean, his sudden "disappearance" isn't all that jarring. Before I read of it here, I don't think I even noticed it.
254. FalconGK81
@jorgybear: It's entirely possible that we'll hear he has died (or that he'll just never show up again). See my stuff below on why I think this is unlikely. Another coincidence that points to Sovoy=Sweet-eater is because the Kingkiller chronicles is obviously inspired by PR's time in university, and it explores lots of themes about that time in life and the experiences that people have. And one theme that has been largely unexplored is drugs. Of course, this is even further conjuecture/speculation than the previous stuff, but it just seems "right" to me.

@Sahirioth: I don't have exact page numbers for you, but Sovoy is introduced right at the beginning of K's university experiences, and he's portrayed as good friends with Willem and Simmon. They even have a scene where Sovoy was "supposed" to play corners with them, but he leaves them to spend time with a female, and they grouse about it more than I would expect for someone they don't care about or spend a good amount of time with. He is also the person at the Eolian with Denna the night that K earns his pipes. At that point in the story I'd say he was just as involved as Wil and Sim. That's why his sudden disappearence from the story seems odd. I think there is one other mention later in NotW where Sim is saying he doesn't like Denna, and one of the reasons he gives is that Sovoy was really hurt by her. I think that's the last time we hear anything about him.

I'm not sure how to answer "when would we expect him to pop up again" other than to say that if you read the beginning university scenes again, you'll notice that he's mentioned at the same rate (and in the same settings) as Wil and Sim. So his sudden disappearnece seems odd. I never noticed it myself until someone asked PR about it in the Q&A. I guess what unnerves me is that Sovoy played enough of a part in the story that I would have expected him to show up more than he has so far, and PR is much too strong a writer to have developed him as much as he did and then just throw him away. Nothing he has done in the story could not have been served by other characters.

Lastly (and I know it's weak) I'll just point out that if Sovoy didn't matter at all I think PR would have answered that question more straightforward. There was a bit of a "nod and wink" in that response.
Patrick Stultz
255. Audion
re Sovoy:

I figured he dissapeared because Denna dumped him. I think it's her influence, she "just sort of writes down" for all her previous guys to not notice her, and since K and Wil and Sim all know her, it extends a bit to them. Basically, if there is a chance Denna might show up, Sovoy finds himself elsewhere.
Or after she leaves someone they just find a reason to not be around. She's been on the arm of a whole lot of guys in the story, you'd think there would be fights in the streets when an old jilted lover see's her on the arm of someone else.. but they all seem to leave after she breaks up with them.
Just a thought.
256. FalconGK81
@Audion: I like it. Certainly possible, within Denna's character (and her questions about "writing down magic"), and would explain Sovoy's disappearance.
jum bles
257. jumbles
I just thought of something. Apologies if it's been brought up before. Kvothe is telling his story, and Bast hopes it will get Kvothe to believe in himself again. Many hope the story will help Kvothe regain his name. Well pretty much the same thing happened to someone else in the story. Sceop couldn't even remember his name at first. Then as he told the story of his life, he regained his confidence and became a great speaker, which is what Sceop likely means in Ademic. Arliden (Kvothe actually says his father, I'm just going to assume his father is Arliden here) told Kvothe his name means "to know." Maybe by telling the story, Kvothe will regain his name and become a great knower again (I'm assuming becoming a good knower by regaining his name would mean he was a good knower before). Or maybe he just regains his name/confidence and the Sceop-Kvothe connection is just (imagined?) coincidence.
Carl Banks
258. robocarp

Too bad that didn't work on Ambrose. The book might have been a lot shorter.
Patrick Stultz
259. Audion

I know right! I'm guesing you were making a joke, but on the off chance you wern't I'm also assuming she only plys it on persistant suitors. Deoch remembers her and all too.
260. Rich C
I'm not sure about this and don't have NOTW handy, but I think the last we see of Sovoy is just prior to Kvothe's duel in Dal's Advanced Sympathy class, when he is running book on the betting. Don't know if that ties into the sweet-eater theory, but it reinforces the point that Sovoy was at least as regular a part of Kvothe's circle as Manet, and then he just disappears.
Carl Banks
261. robocarp

It was a lighthearted objection, actually.

I don't really think Denna is keeping them away by magic (that would be different and more powerful than anything we've seen) but maybe some guys are hurt and/or ashamed enough to stay away from places they spent with her? You can see why that would be true for Savoy but not Ambrose.

It seems unlikely that any guy would get that upset over her after dating for maybe a span or so, but maybe Denna is using magic to contribute to that. (That would be similar to magic we've seen: it's like Felurian's magic only instead of inducing desire it induces shame.)

But if you want my opinion, I don't think any of that's happening. I'm about 80% sure Denna is casting some kind of magic with her braids, and 99% sure PR wants us to think she is, but she's using it for something else. I think Sovoy disappeared because 1. he sucked as student, 2. he was running out of money even though he was Modegan nobility, and 3. he probably was using too much denner resin.

As for meta reasons, there could be a lot but my guess is that PR got bored of the character.
262. Peaceman
@ Brewer and the others concerning Sovoy.
I haven´t got my book here but let´s try… Pat gave hints as he wrote “Blue, Blue ,Blue”. So I think everything in connection with this color is important and most includes danger. Often persons got introduced with this color.
f.e. :
chandrian- blue flames
dennas- blue ring
Ambrose- got introduced with the word blue
The dracus- blue fire
I don´t know the English word for it, but the liquid that is responsible for the fire in the handicraft is for making blue sympathy lamps.
Kvothe wake up at a cold blue morning and hears the story about the Chandrian at the farm.

To get to the core:
Wilm- got introduced with the word blue
bast- blue eyes
Auri- with her blue green lamp

And last but not least SOVOY is introduced with blue eyes right in the first sentences. So I think he could be important.
Carl Banks
263. robocarp
One thing that occurred to me when I was rereading the scene were Denna stumbles into a tavern out of breath and Kvothe calls the wind to rescue her.

Kvothe is apparently using some of some sort of magic when he speaks seven words to Denna. (Grammarie?) He doesn't appear to be aware he's casting magic, though. Apparently his sleeping mind is doing it.

Perhaps the same thing is true of Denna: she's casting magic with her braids but is doing it with her sleeping mind. That actually makes me feel a lot better about it. The evidence in the text that Denna has magic hair is too strong to be coincidence IMO, but I didn't think she had it in her to do it deliberately.
264. FalconGK81
@262: I've never noticed just how much the color blue comes up until you just pointed it out, and I certainly never noticed how it is involved in so many introductions. It's definitely some good food for thought.

Just a little something I noticed now that you pointed this out, but there is a scene in WMF when K is training with the Adem, and he is complaining about the Lethani, and specifically the concept of it being hard to explain. K gets annoyed (probably because of his interactions with Elodin along this very same topic) and says something like "Give an example of something that can't be explained. And don't say blue". So there is blue again.

@263: The only problem with that theory is that Denna specifically asks about magic that is "written down", which would imply that she KNOWS in some way what she's doing. I think it's deliberate, but I also think SHE believes it's mostly harmless. But she is ashamed when K read's the knot in her hair at the end of WMF, because she immediately takes it out after he notices, and comments that she feels silly for doing it.
Carl Banks
265. robocarp

I didn't she doesn't know she's doing it, only that she's not doing it deliberately. Maybe consciously is a better word? She's got to at least suspect she is....

Take a look at post 226. She caught herself in the middle of braiding her hair and quickly undid the braid. The suggests she was absent-mindedly playing with her hair while her sleeping mind was casting spells, before she realized what was happening and stopped it.

Likewise, Kvothe presumably knows about 7 Words and at least suspects it to be magical, but there's no indication he deliberately thinks, "I'm gonna say seven words now and force this woman to love me." (If he did I doubt it would work.) The seven words come out of his sleeping mind.
Kate Hunter
266. KateH
Okay, I'm just throwing this wild speculation into the ring here because this is the latest thread in the re-read.

So, names. It's interesting to me that Felurian, and Laurien's names are close to one another. Given that Fehr is iron in the sygaldry language, is it significant that Felurian's name begins with that sound, and that she's willingly works with iron? Bast grabs Chronicler's iron pendant to make the point that he can tolerate it, however unpleasant. But Felurian doesn't mind the scent of iron on K after he shaves, and apparently spends a good chunk of time working with an iron tool to complete K's shaed. She's clearly Fae, so what's special about Felurian that she doesn't share the same aversion to iron that the rest of them do? I can't see her putting up with the kind of discomfort Bast describes resulting from iron just out of altruism/affection for K. She's not a very self-sacrificing character.

It's been speculated that some Shaper changed the nature of iron during the Creation War, possibly to help divide the Faen from the Mortal. If Felurian predates this change, or maybe the Faen/Mortal division itself, maybe she's nearly or fully immune to the iron issues. We know she's thousands of years old, while Bast is merely hundreds.

So I have no idea where, if anywhere the Fehr+Laurien==>Felurian idea could or should go. The sounds just struck me as interesting. Thinking out loud here.
thistle pong
267. thistlepong
Chronicler eased the pale wooden door gently open and peered inside. Cold Autum light spilled in through the single window, illuminating a massive back stone fireplac in the center of the room. Pink light crept into the corners and, on a small desk, brushed against three crumpled sheets of paper.

Eyes wide, he carefully untangled the closest and, one eye on the door, quickly read:
...had touched her she had been so cold. But there was no mistaking the truth. Her warm, clear voice. The way she held me close, forehead resting in the curve of her neck. I wept hot tears onto her chest as she began to teach me Birdsong at Morning. Gathering herbs, it seemed, had not been sufficient to make up for the carelss rhyming of a seven year old boy. Perhaps Hushed Hart...
Chornicler blinked. Stared at the open door. Furtively replaced the crumpled leaf and tiptoed from the room. Never daring to breathe. Some stories, he thought, should never be told.
268. FalconGK81
thistlepong: What is that? Is that an excerpt from D3? I don't recognize the passage.
John Graham
269. JohnPoint
Falcon@268 : I believe that is thistle's fanfic in response to Kate @266. Somewhat creepy but amusing...
270. FalconGK81
Oh... OHHHHH.... ew.......
Jeremy Raiz
272. Jezdynamite
Has anyone else noticed the lack of mention of any permanent iron features/items/materials in the Waystone Inn (other than the iron nails that are used to hang the swords mounting board, one of the keys and locks relevant to Kvothes chest, Chronicler's iron disc around his neck and Aaron's iron rod)?

Other than the temporary or hidden items listed above, I couldn't find any reference to iron items residing in the Waystone Inn.

The front door lock is made from brass (Kindle WMF Chp 1 "Apple and Elderberry") and so is the front door key (Kindle WMF Chp 151 "Locks" ). Together with the brass bound barrels that Kvothe orders from Graham.

Since there is a lack of any significant/permanent elements of iron in the Waystone, I think the use of brass is mostly to make sure Bast does not have to touch/encounter iron on a daily basis in the Waystone.

There could be other reasons for using brass (cause brass is partially made from copper) but the overall mystery of the "brass barrels" seems less mysterious to me now.
273. FalconGK81
@272: I always assumed it was to make Bast comfortable. Of course there could be other reasons for it, but I haven't seen anything that clearly indicates this. I think the fact that K told such an obvious cover story to Graham about the brass on the barrels indicates that he has prepared the cover story in advance.

Of course, as you point out, brass is made from with copper, and copper obviously has some special properties, so it is possible there is another reason, but I think we can't do anything other than speculate at best, and there is already a perfectly logical explanation provided.
Roger Pavelle
274. RogerPavelle
I had a new thought on Denna's patron...what if he is Count Threpe?

a) She met her patron at the Eolian.
b) Threpe has too many musicians under him currently, so wanting to hide his identity would be very important.
c) He also talks about some patrons liking to hide their patronage (when Kvothe asks him about such things).

There is also an interesting similarity in their names - Denn and Denna (or assorted variations). It is also possible he is related to her in some way (and named her after himself).

Nisheeth Pandey
275. Nisheeth
@274, RogerPavelle:
I think that the biggest problem with that idea would be that Deoch would have mentioned that Denna left with Threpe, and not some unknown person. I also imagine she would know who he is, since he is quite famous in the Eolian.
276. Nameless
@274, RogerPavelle:

Well, it was Threpe who send Kvothe to the Maer Alveron. And from time to time he is travling. On the other hand, he was in Imre when Denna was in Yll. It is not clear if Master Ash was with her, but I alway assumed so. But thinking about it, appearing at two remote places at about the same time is no obstacle for a Chandrian or anyone who can use the waystone portals for instant travle.
277. FalconGK81
If we take Denna at her word, she doesn't even know who he is. She says he doesn't want to give her his real name. But Threpe is known by EVERYONE at the Eolian. So either Denna was lying to K (possible, but I don't think likely in this instance), or it can't be Threpe.

I want to make a bold prediction for D3: We learn that K has brought someone back to life from the dead. Lyra does it in the Lanre/Lyra story, and we know that K has done something that he shouldn't have done, likely involving opening something. I think it is bringing back someone from the dead (likely Denna, but it doesn't have to be). In the Lanre story from Scarpi. Lyra is described as bringing him back from the Doors of Stone, which is also the current known title of D3.

Also, consider that in the Lanre story from Scarpi, Lanre turns "bad" (into Chandrian) after his being returned to life by Lyra. Perhaps this happened with whoever K returned to life, which explains the rumors in the frame story that there is a "new" Chandrian, and the current falling apart of the world.
278. muzmuz
Does anyone else think that Lady LAckless is Kvuothe's aunty? :)
279. Metaphasia
I have a couple of theories that I want to share. I realize that some of these were covered earlier, but I want to throw my two cents in.

First, I think that copper doesn't have a name. It's been theorized before, and in here, but I really think it makes sense. There's lots of evidence for it; from the metatextual evidence of Patrick Rothfuss saying that a copper knife would be useful against a name (it would be folly to take an iron blade against a namer, if they knew the name of iron they could turn your weapon against you, but with copper they cannot name it and are powerless), to Taborlin the Great's copper sword (not iron, but copper which Dedan says it useless as a blade, so it must have some other use) and the copper in the walls of Elodin's cell at the Rookery. I think the most powerful evidence isn't the copper in the walls of the cell though, but what Elodin says afterwards: cyaerbasalien. Some people think that this is a Name (the Name of copper), but I disagree. We are told in several places that those who are completely oblivious hear nothing when you say a Name, and that if you are clued in, if you could someday be a Namer, you hear the name of the object but not the Name, and if you are a Namer, you hear the actual Name. So when Kvothe says the Name of the Wind and Sim and Wil go get Elodin, he's not sure what is wrong with Kvothe, but he suspects. So he tests it out by saying the Name of the Wind, and Kvothe hears it (aerlevsedi), but Sim, who is clued in but not a Namer, only hears the word "wind". So at this point in the story, Kvothe shouldn't be hearing Names, which is why I suspect that "cyaerbasalien" isn't a Name, but rather a Fae spell (Grammarie?). Fae magic can defeat copper, but names cannot.

(Incidentally, I think this also explains the "seven words to make someone fall in love with you" bit. Love has a Name, just like fire or wind, but because love is so much more complex, like music , it's Name is not just one word long, but seven, one of the most complex things in the world . And when you say the Name of Love, people who aren't Namers don't hear the actual Name, they just hear the words of love, like Sim, and they hear seven words that will make that specific person fall in love with you. Elodin is so impressed with Kvothe at his initial Admissions interview, that he actually stops and considers the possibility that he might know the Name of Love, one of the most complex names there is.)

And this is why the first two locks on Kvothe's Thrice Locked Chest are copper with an iron key and iron with a copper key. Because Naming cannot beat the copper, and not are the Fae themselves, but their magic, Grammarie and Glamourie, defeated by iron, so the first two locks stop most people from opening the chest with magic.

I think the third lock, the lock that cannot be seen, is what I'm referring to as a "Lockless Lock". I think that it's possible to bind an object to your name, so that only you can use it. You can bind a sword to your name, and only you can wield it, or you can bind a chest to your name and only you can open it. And I think that's what locking the Lockless chest; that it's bound to the Lockless name, so only a true Lockless can open it. But as Elodin says, there are consequences to changing your name; if you change your name, you can no longer use objects bound to you. And the Locklesses changed their name to Lackless, hundreds of years ago, and can now no longer open the Lockless chest (But Kvothe discovers he is the son of Netalia, and proclaims himself not a Lackless, but a Lockless, and can therefore open the chest).

And this is the third lock on Kvothe's chest. It's bound to his name, Kvothe, so only he can open the chest. Which is why he is so surprised when it doesn't open; he hadn't realized until that moment that his name had actually changed so drastically that it was no longer the same, because he hadn't tried to open it while he was living in Newarre.

I also think that this is what's going on with Cinder and the bandits. It doesn't really make a lot of sense for a Chandrian to be stealing taxes, unless the Chandrian know that Kvothe is in the region. It's pretty obvious that Important People are waiting for the Lockless box to be opened (seven things stand before the entrance to the Lackless door), and I think the Chandrian are among them. Whatever their ultimate plan or objective, they need the box to be opened for some reason. And they think that Kvothe is going to be able to do it, so they set up a test; they know he's in the region and working for the Maer, so they start stealing money, hoping that he'll come out. The bandits are just a lure to get Kvothe to try to open the chest with the money, which is a Lockless box (or maybe a variation that responds to those whose name could be Lockless instead of those whose name is Lockless), which is why he can open it and not the others; they didn't loosen it up for him, it opened because Kvothe knocked and said "edro", just like he says "edro" at the end to open his chest.

Finally, I want to talk about the Cthaeh.
The Cthaeh is not evil.
I'm not saying the Cthaeh is good, just that we don't know it's motives yet. We have been judging the Cthaeh to be evil based not on the immediate, predictable consequences of its actions, but rather on the long term effects, since we believe (and have evidence to support) the Cthaeh can see the future. So where we would judge a normal person to be good for giving a person a flower to save their love, we judge the Cthaeh to be evil, since that flower eventually leads to a war. But it's possible that a soldier in that war later on went to a village on the other side of the kingdom to tell a girl that her fiance, his best friend in the unit he was in, was killed, and then he falls in love with her and they get married instead, and twenty generations later, Kvothe is born to their descendants, rather than Quothe.
There are two futures. The one where the Cthaeh does not intervene, and the one where it does. And we only know what the world looks like in the present, in the future where it does intervene. We don't know how much better or worse the world would be if it hadn't.
Everyone likes to talk about what would happen if you went back in time and killed Hitler. They argue whether it would be better today, or worse, or if it would have any effect at all. But the one thing we can say for certain is that we do not know, because changing the course of the war would have a monumental effect on history. So it is possible that the Cthaeh is helping, breaking the inevitable apocalypse up into bite sized calamities that the world can survive, despite being hurt. It's really impossible to tell within the context of the story what its motives are, without a direct statement of authorial intent.
280. FalconGK81
@278: It's pretty much commonly held in this re-read community that Lady Lackless is Kvothe's mother, and Meluan Lackless is his Aunt. I'm pretty sure Jo covers it quite a bit in the re-read, if you want to see how we got there. The key piece of evidence is the song that Arliden sung that Kvothe says his mother made him sleep under the wagon for. The last lines are (I don't recall exactly, but basically): "It's worth my life, to make my wife not tally a lot less".

not tally a lot less, when run together, would sound an awful lot like "Netalia Lockless". The line would essentially be saying that he made "Netalia Lockless" his wife. So the suggestion is that she made him sleep under the wagon because he was giving away who she really was, not because "the meter was bad", which is what Kvothe was told.

When you put it together with Meluan's hatred of the Edema, and the fact that we know Netalia Lockless ran off with troupers, and that she got really upset with Kvothe when he sang the rhyme about Lady Lackless, its about as certain as something can be without PR coming out and saying it. Which he likely will in D3.
281. Nameless
The Cthaeh is killing butterflies because their color offend him. On the meta level this referes to the Butterfly-effect / Chaos-theory. If you directly translate his statement this means his interventions into history are meant to satisfy his aesthetic taste and not to serve a greater good.
Rothfuss is influence by D&D when it comes to characters. Here the
Cthaeh has clearly a chaotic evil alignment. The Chandrian on the other hand follow a masterplan, thus probably lawful evil.
For some reason Rothfuss once characterized K as neutral neutral or neutral chaotic. Considering his tales and deeds in the frame he more appears like a chaotic good character.

I think Metaphasia is close to the truth with the 2 cent+summary on the thrice locked chest.

The idea of an reanimated Denna is kind of interesting. If she is indeed a Lyra incarnation, Lanre and her would be finally together for eternity. Kind of a happy-end, after all.

More realistic is that Lanre was reanimated in a similar way than Denna was by K. But as stories change over time, things were overburdened with significance. Probably this dualism is what Rothfuss is aiming at after all. On the one hand we watch how the events in K.'s life become a myth, but on the other hand we are confronted with a lot of ancient mythology which we readily take at face value. The only proof for this are the chandrian, and despite haliax they not even have to be immortal. Maybe they just pop in and out of fae, and thus live through the centuries like Felurian does.
282. FalconGK81
@279: I really like where you've gone with the thrice-locked chest. But I disagree about the Cthaeh, for basically the same reasons Nameless gives in 281. Also, IMO, the Cthaeh has way too much Genesis-Satan imagery to be coincidence. It's in a tree, and can see the future / is an oracle (tree of knowledge). It is describe as making slithering sounds, consistant with a snake.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
283. SwordOfMidAfternoon
For the ASOIAF fans, their relationship (Bast & Kvothe) reminds me of Dunk & Egg. Bast is Kvothe's 'squire' in a sense. He's to help Kvothe with seemingly mundane daily tasks, be his assistant when needed, in exchange for instruction & experience.
Where Egg has his father's royal signet tucked away for emergencies, Bast has his abilities as one of the Fae folk.
284. FalconGK81
@283: First, LOL at your name. Love it.

Second, I agree somewhat, in that Bast does seem to share a good number of characteristics with Egg. But Dunk and Kvothe probably couldn't be any more different.
Kate Hunter
285. KateH
Re: The whole Bredon=Mr. Ash thing. I agree that it's suggestive, but I'm just not buying that K's impressions of him could be so far off. K has good instincts about people, and he has them rather often. There isn't so much as a hint of anything about Bredon setting off warning bells for K. I can't see K in frame describing Bredon as a "gentleman down to his bones," if he later learns that Bredon is the man beating D. K more than once describes himself as Edema Ruh "down to (his) bones." This is a strong statement coming from him. Applying the same phrase to Bredon indicates to me a certainty on K's part about B's character.

On the other hand, the clues are intriguing. Bredon is a mysterious character, and of course this doesn't happen by accident. Personally, I wouldn't put it past PR to deliberately put in such tantalizing details just to yank the chains of all his obsessive (re-)readers. Pat's having fun with us!
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
286. SwordOfMidAfternoon
@284. Quite right, Kvothe will never be described as 'thick as a castle wall'

I was speaking more in regard to their relationship.... Kvothe/Dunk are clearly dominant over Bast/Egg despite the curious fact that Bast/Egg ultimately have far more power at their command.
Which is what leads me to believe that Bast is Kvothe's 'squire' in a sense. Charged to go with Kvothe among the mortal lands and learn from him. 'Reshi' is clearly a term of endearment... Which opens other possibilities along similar lines... 'Father'?
287. FalconGK81
@285: It's a fine point, but I think K talks about people in the frame as he saw them at the point in the story that he's telling. In other words, when he describes Bredon as "a gentleman down to his bones" I think he's talking about how he saw him at that point in the story. Also I don't know why "a gentleman" would be prohibited from beating D. There are plenty of people in the Four Corners that would be described as "a gentleman" that clearly are not. In fact, there may be an implication that gentleman mistreat people and get away with it because of their class.

There's one thing for certain: there is more to Bredon than we know. I feel pretty certain the fact that K gave Bredon those rumor letters that talked about the "pagan frolics" will be relevant somehow. Bredon now knows there are people gossiping about that, and K dismissed it as silly court gossip, but I feel pretty sure there is more to that than we currently know. It felt a bit like a "Chekov's Gun" moment. I'd be disappointed if it never came up again.

@286: I agree that the power dynamic between them is very similar! Although we don't yet know what Bast's title really means. Wasn't it "Prince of Twilight" or some such?

As for Reshi = "father", I've kinda liked that idea as well! We know time passes differently in Fae than in 4C, so he certainly could have fathered a child there that could appear Bast's age now. It would explain Bast's extreme emotional attachment to K. And "Prince of Twilight" (If I'm remembering that right) certainly sounds like something you might call the child of Felurian. I don't think PR is actually gonna do that, but it's not impossible. It would add a special irony to the scene in WMF where K accusses Bast of being the child's father.
John Graham
288. JohnPoint
Falcon @287 --

Bast is introduced to Chronicler as "Bastas, Son of Remmen, Prince of Twilight and the Telwyth Mael." We don't actually know whether Bast is the mentioned-prince, or whether Remmen is the prince (it depends on how you interpret the comma, just like in the 2nd Amendment to the US constitution). Similarly, we don't know whether Remmen is Bast's mother or father, though we have speculated previously that "reshi" could be a diminutive of "Remmen", as you might expect a small child just learning to talk to do (along the lines of "mama" as baby-talk for "mother"). However, to my knowledge, no one has come up with anything definitive either way.

As I propose above (e.g., @18), I think that the full title "Prince of Twilight and the Telwyth Mael" refers to a specific location in the Fae -- two sets of coordinates on the two axes: Day/Night and Dark/Light (or whatever you want to name the second axis). Felurian is described as "Lady of Twilight, Lady of First Quiet". The "Twilight" matches, so the question is, are "Telwyth Mael" and "First Quiet" the same spot on the second Fae axis? Possibly.

Re Bredon=M. Ash: I don't have a strong opinion on this one, but I do want to remind you that we can't be sure that Master Ash is cruelly/maliciously/sadistically beating Denna. All we have is the word of the Cthaeh for that, and we have to read its words very carefully... It's certainly possible that M. Ash is sadistic, but it's also possible (and implied by Denna) that he's actually teaching her something, perhaps to fight.

In comparison, Kvothe has plenty of bruises and scars from his time at the University and with the Adem, but we can't say that the Masters or the Adem are beating him sadistically (with the possible exception of Hemme). Reread the Cthaeh's statements about Denna and Master Ash, but substitute Kvothe and Vashet. It would still more or less track (ok, it's not a game for Vashet, but it's relatively easy to change the specifics of the Cthaeh's statement to be accurate given Kvothe's report on his time in Ademre), and would seem horrible to someone who hadn't seen Kvothe's POV. This is exactly what Denna implies when she mentions Kvothe's scars, and it's the reason that he ends up not talking to her about Master Ash near then end of WMF.
Kate Hunter
289. KateH
If D's patron were inadvertently bruising her while teaching her to fight, it seems like she'd say so. Instead she comes up with a flimsy story about her horse throwing her because it thought a stick was a snake. She's injured somewhere on her legs and torso, as we know from her wincing. Learning to fight wouldn't be something she obviously had to hide from K. He knows she carries a concealed knife. It's the kind of information she'd use to defend her patron to K, or at least mention, even if she didn't say who was teaching her. She'd be proud that she was acquiring another skill that would help her take care of herself.

I admit and agree that the words of the Cthaeh should be parsed very, very carefully. The idea of Bredon as her patron "beating" her at tak was a clever one, whoever suggested that. But still, I think someone is beating D, and she's lying about it. If it's not her patron, then who would she put up with it from?

It's a pretty big price for her to pay, not just in pain, but in lost opportunity. She can't be alluring to her gentlemen callers while her face is bruised. Every facial bruise means down time for her, holed up in a room somewhere. She has no hesitation getting out of town over other issues, so whatever she's getting in return must be pretty impressive. She says her patron knows things she needs to know. What's that all about?
290. FalconGK81
I have to agree with KateH in 289 re: Denna's injuries. She wouldn't be lying about how she got them if they were inadvertant injuries. It too easily compares with how we know domestic violence victims act in real life. She's clearly being beaten.

As for whether or not it's her patron beating her, didn't she flat out admit it was her patron when she was high on Denner Resin at the end of NOTW?
Steven Halter
291. stevenhalter
Denna is almost certainly concealing something. How and why (and if it is intential/inadverant/sadistic/...) she is getting hurt will almost certainly be something that factors into D3. It seems like way too big a clue to just vanish away.
The Cthaeh is certainly twisting the nuances of the event so as to manipulate Kvothe.
John Graham
292. JohnPoint
Re Denna's injuries: Yes, the signs definitely point to her patron beating her, and we're definitely supposed to believe it at this point in the story.

My point is that we don't actually know the truth. We're seeing it through the lens of Kvothe's storytelling, along with all his prejudices and expectations. Kvothe (in story) certainly believes that her patron is beating her and the Cthaeh implies it quite carefully. Whether she is or not, well, that's less certain. We will likely find out in D3.

Edit to add: Steven got there before me (@291), but I think his point more or less agrees with mine -- we don't yet know what is actually happening with Denna...

Also, she didn't actually admit in Trebon that Master Ash beats her. Rather, she said that he hit her following the attack at the wedding, ostensibly so that she wouldn't be uninjured and have more suspicion, and that he made her ask him to do it. Yes, these are red flags. However, they are hearsay at this point.
Steven Halter
293. stevenhalter
JohnPoint@292:Yep. Is it D3 yet?--because it will be really interesting to see how all of these pieces play out.
jum bles
294. jumbles
I don't come down on one side or the other on what is true about Denna's patron and what is not. But I will post something here that I posted on the ASOIAF forum a few months ago:

Some things the Cthaeh does and does not say:
1. It mentions Laurian and Kvothe's mother but does not say they are the same person
2. It does not say Kvothe's father's name
3. He beats her, you know. Her patron. Not all the time, but often. Sometimes in a temper, but mostly it's a game to him. How far can he go before she cries? How far can he push before she tries to leave and he has to lure her back again? "Temper" can mean, "calmness of mind or emotions; composure," hence why the phrase "lose your temper" means getting angry. Also the Cthaeh doesn't say that the game is seeing when she cries or tries to leave. It could just be musing to itself with those questions.
4. It didn't say her patron hit her with his walking stick. It didn't say her welts were of his affliction.
5. She's trembling on the floor with blood in her mouth and you know what she thinks before the black? You. She thinks of you. It doesn't say the patron causes the blood in her mouth. It doesn't even say the blood is her own. Makes me think of NotWc57, "Her lips were always red, morning and night. As if minutes before you saw her, she had been eating sweet berries, or drinking heart's blood." Also reminds me of WMFc30, "You're the poultice that draws the poison from my heart." Also, why would she think of Kvothe while training or being beaten (if the blood is from training or being beaten)? Is she with her patron because of Kvothe (if this even has to do with Ash)? And "the black" doesn't have to mean she blacked out; it could just mean nighttime, or before she falls asleep.
6. Good thing she's used to it by now, isn't it? Otherwise you might have hurt her. Otherwise you just might have broken that poor girl's heart. The way this is worded, the only thing the Cthaeh is saying for sure is that she is used to it. Hurting her or breaking her heart may or may not be true.

The Cthaeh sure seems to want Kvothe to hate Master Ash.
295. Valgaroth
I like the idea of Kvothe as Bast's father.

I did find, however, that Rishi or RSI is a sanskrit word meaning "inspired poet or sage". Given Rothfuss's propensity to play with words, would make me think that Reshi is closer to "master" or "sage" than "father".
Patrick Stultz
296. Audion
re: Ctheah

It obviously says things to start someone down a path.. we know it speaks the truth. And lastly it MUST BE ASKED. So, I think it's safe to say (reasonably safe) that anything it says after a question must be related to the question. Anything it interjects on it's own is totally suspect.

With that reasoning, I find everything it says regarding his parents and the chanderian to be pretty true. While some nit pick over pronouns etc etc, I think the Cth fairly clearly stated the Chandrian killed his parrents.

The Denna bit is a bit more tricky, the Cth interjects that on his own in order to push Kvothe. So a lot of the speculation there is pretty warrented. The Cth might have a bit more leway in what it says there.

Also, the Ctheah didn't start in on K until he asked something, once he finally asks about the Amyr the Ctheah goes off.. I'm pretty sure it's power is tied to the question, if you don't ask of it, it can't know anything more about you than you tell it.
Kate Hunter
297. KateH
"There are plenty of people in the Four Corners that would be described as "a gentleman" that clearly are not. In fact, there may be an implication that gentleman mistreat people and get away with it because of their class."
I agree that plenty of people in 4C are gentlemen in the societal sense of the word who might also beat a woman. But can you think of any such person whose character isn't thoroughly described by K? I mean, Ambrose is the obvious example. A noble's son, and a complete turd as illuminated by K. Am I missing anyone in thinking K's a pretty reliable judge and describer of people's personality? My take is that if K had to acknowledge a jerk as a "gentleman", he'd be damn sure to set the record straight with the less flattering details. He hasn't breathed a word against Bredon in all of WMF. I think when he says of Bredon, "gentleman," he means it in the best possible sense.

Maybe we are meant to suspect Bredon is D's patron, but he really isn't. Or maybe he really is her patron. Maybe Bredon will be the one that betrays K, and his kindly facade will be proven false. He and K have the beginnings of a friendship, probably not yet enough to have it be betrayal if he turns on K. But I'm pretty sure K will return to the Maer's court, so I expect to see more of Bredon in book 3. Further development of their friendship could build it to the level where betrayal is possible. (But really, my money's on D as the one who betrays him.)
298. FalconGK81
re: Gentleman

I assumed PR was using "Gentleman" the way it was used in the english language 200+ years ago, which simply meant "Someone born to the landed gentry". A perfect example of this is the story he tells the tailor in NOTW when he pretends he was the victim of an extortion attempt by a prostitute. If "Gentleman" were used in the modern sense (someone who is courteous regardless of social class), you certainly wouldn't use the word to describe someone who had just walked nearly nude through public streets.

Then again, to support your view of it, he does say "in every sense of the word", which could mean that he wants us to consider both the more technical definiton of the word AND the modern implications of the word. But again, that doesn't mean K is saying Bredon didn't turn out to be something other than that later in the story, he's giving his impression of him as he knew him at that point. And certainly someone can appear to be a good person and turn out to be a total cad. In other words, I'm not sure I buy your explanation that just because K hasn't told us that someone he thought was good/nice/noble/gentleman/ect doesn't mean he WON'T later tell us that. In fact, it would be bad storytelling to say "This Bredon guy was a real gentleman, but then later he turned out to be a total D-bag. But, let's not talk about that now...". It would be really bad foreshadowing.

As for examples of other people who might be "gentleman" in the societal sense and also beat women, yes Ambrose is the OBVIOUS example, because I'm pretty sure it is strongly implied (if not downright explicitly stated) that he gets physically agressive with women. The descriptions we've had of the landed nobility give us no reason to assume they aren't susceptible to the same character defects as nobility in our own history were, and physical violence to those seen as beneath their station is not a stretch at all, male or female. In fact, I think one of the purposes of Ambrose's character is to illustrate this general idea. The landed nobility are flawed humans in 4c the same way they were on Earth. This is the same reason I think we get the "Noble's sons are like natural disasters" section.
Kate Hunter
299. KateH
@FalconGK81, yeah, I take your points. It's tempting to finger Bredon as D's patron; I freely admit it. It's just my gut telling me otherwise, and my gut is far from infallible.

Ambrose does in fact beat women. It's (one) reason Devi gives for wanting a piece of him when she helps K set fire to Ambrose's rooms. She says he beats his whores. This report plus D's statement that Ambrose is "surprisingly light on his feet," plus Ambrose taking the same semester off as K and his home being not too far from Severen had me considering Ambrose as D's patron for about half a second. Far too many facts arguing against that one to make it work, but it crossed my mind.

Oh, and btw, the first person who comes to my mind when reading that noble's sons are "one of nature's great destructive forces" is K. He is a noble's son after all, and I think we should anticipate a heapin' helping of destruction in book 3.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
300. SwordOfMidAfternoon
At my local library today, going through the book store... Always a good source of good books for no more than 1$ each... Nothing caught my eye, but I moved on to the 'free to a good home" section and what do I find? A hardcover of WiseMan's Fear. Rather neat.
Kate Hunter
301. KateH
Another surmise that doesn't seem to fit on any particular thread, so I post it here. (And please forgive me if this has been proposed before.)

Re the Penitent King. What if this is merely a title and not an epithet of any individual king? We've been speculating about who has reason and character to account for penitence, but what if there has been a long line of Penitent Kings and the "penitence" is merely a nod to Tehlinism or some other religious notion? Secular authority bestowed by religious "mandate," and power sheathed in a veneer of piety is awfully common in history. "Penitent" might give us no information at all about the King's identity.
Sahi Rioth
302. Sahirioth
@ KateH, 301

Gods damn you, that makes sense. I'm inclined to agree, but I do so hope you're wrong. It somehow seems to me a less interesting reason as to why that title has been bestowed upon the King.
Kate Hunter
303. KateH
Sahirioth @302

I'm not saying I think that's the case, just putting it out there as pure speculation. Trapis' Tehlu/Manda story could look like supporting evidence in retrospect if this turns out to be true. But right now I don't think I could argue for my own idea just on that basis.
Carl Banks
304. robocarp

I don't know if I've seen it here but that idea occurred to me (like, maybe the "Penitent" King is like the "Holy" "Roman" Emperor). I also thought it might be an ironic epithet.

However, there is evidence that the Penitent King is called Penitent because people by and large think he's penitent. Kote tells Aaron that, if Aaron were to hear the true story, he wouldn't be so willing to fight in the Penitent King's war. That tells us that most people don't know the whole story, and if they did they'd think the king was a bad guy who wasn't worth fighting for. Implying that most people do, or once did, think the war was worth fighting for, and so the king was probably a good enough guy. Like maybe a penitent.
Kate Hunter
305. KateH
@robocarp, 304

I just took that to mean that if Aaron knew the true story of the war, he wouldn't be so eager to fight. I read that as not having anything to do with the penitence of the king per se. K blames himself for the war, and calls it "stupid," as most wars probably are. Since he was involved K could presumably fill Aaron in on how the war got started. I think a king with an epithet of Penitent (ironic or otherwise) could engage in a stupid war just as easily as a king with a hereditary title of Penitent. But that's just me; I'm still not arguing it one way or the other.
Kate Hunter
306. KateH
On another note...

Devi leaving her door unlocked and probably hustling K away from the premises has been niggling at my brain. What do we know about Devi? Precious little for certain, but...We know she wants into the Archives very badly. We know she hates Ambrose, but we also know that even when she hated K's guts she was willing to work with him to pursue something she wanted, which in that case was "a piece of" Ambrose. So Devi will swallow her personal feelings about someone, however strong, if the situation warrants it. We also know Ambrose is a scriv. I'm not utterly convinced that she's cut a deal with Ambrose, but I think Devi was expecting someone shortly and she didn't want them to see K at her place. If she is dealing with Ambrose, it would likely be a proxy, not Ambrose himself, but still they might recognize K. Of course, it could be anyone at all who could offer access to the Archives - Devi would feel obligated to conceal the identity of anyone helping her out.

But, thinking back on K's abrupt departure for Severin...K was being tailed by a guy with a "pinched face" as he crossed the stonebridge into Imre, on his way to borrow money from Devi to fund his journey. This means that whoever was keeping tabs on K knew that he'd talked to Devi. The same pinched face guy turns out to be crew on the riverboat from Imre to Tarbean. So someone did very quick footwork arranging to keep abreast of K's whereabouts, because he got on that boat the day after talking with Threpe and agreeing to go to Severin. Likely the conversation with Threpe in the Eolian was overheard.

Devi's reaction to seeing K alive is weirder than Sim's. She's stunned, yeah, but it's more than just surprise. Guilt, fear, both, something else. Let's review what happened when K borrowed the money to fund his trip to Severin. He only tells her that he has an opportunity to find a "fine patron" in Vintas. This information would be of interest to Ambrose, but it's pretty vague; worthless in fact if the coversation at the Eolian was listened to. However, K does give Devi information that would be highly interesting to Ambrose. K leaves D's ring with Devi as collateral, telling her that that was the motive for breaking into Ambrose's rooms, and that D means a great deal to K. He doesn't want Devi wearing the ring because he doesn't want D to see it on someone else's hand. Ambrose knew D and her ring. He knew K. But he had nothing to connect the two. It's not a stretch for me to see Devi giving Ambrose (or his proxy) that information if access to the Archives was offered in payment. She might even have enough scruples to wait until K was believed dead before agreeing to give out the information. At that point, with access to the archives hanging in the balance, would she really stand on principles of client confidentiality?

Whether or not Devi has anything to feel guilty about, it looks to me as though Ambrose set up spies to keep an eye on K. They eavesdropped on K's conversation with Threpe, followed Threpe when he booked passage on the boat, paid off one of the sailors on that boat to inform on K, and watched K visit Devi. The sailor let Ambrose know which ship he was on when he departed from Tarbean. Ambrose had that ship sunk. Ambrose is the kind of bastard who might extend his vengeance from K to D, but D was out of town too when K was. If all this is true, we might see Ambrose hurting D to get at K in book 3, particularly since his attempt to kill K off didn't work as well as expected.
Steven Halter
307. stevenhalter
KateH@306:I rather like that chain of reasoning. The pinch faced man, Ambrose and the pirates had always seemed connected to me. Throwing in Devi as a potential informant makes a great deal of sense.
Kate Hunter
308. KateH
Thanks, stevenhalter. Devi's involvement entirely aside, if I'm right about the chain of events, and Ambrose having detailed knowledge of K's trip, then K's time and all his interactions in the Maer's court should be evaluated in terms of what Ambrose might have had a hand in. Bredon would be the obvious character to look at. Though there's also the point that Ambrose probably believed he'd succeeded in killing K, so he might have stopped paying attention.
Carl Banks
309. robocarp
KateH@305, 308

I think it's unlikely that people would support a war if they disliked the King, and people seem to support the war (although their patience is starting to wear thin), so I think it's safe to say the King at least wasn't widely hated at the start of the war. Whether it's because he was a true Penitent, or someone with no strong favor who happens to support a cause people agree with, or the lesser of two evils, remains to be seen. So I agree that my "evidence" was really more of a "possible explanation vector". :)

As for Kvothe being tracked by Ambrose, I think you make an excellent case for it. I think it very likely Ambrose was aware that K was in the Maer's court and was possibly meddling. Think about it: Ambrose was relatively close to Kvothe while Kvothe was staying with the Maer (200 miles to the south, I think), and given the level of gossip in the court, it's hard to believe that news of an unknown young redhead in the Maer's favor wouldn't have made its way to the Jakis estate, or that Ambrose wouldn't have put two and two together. I think it almost a certainty Ambrose knew, and may have been working against Kvothe behind the scenes.

And now for the silly corrollary. Perhaps Ambrose (being Vintish nobility) was close to the Maer. Now, Maer Alveron is a tough dude who is unlikely to pander to the wishes of people like Ambrose, but perhaps Ambrose could use his close connection to the Maer to influence him and make life difficult for the new redhead. "Hey Maer," he might say, "that redhead sure is good at wooing. Better pray he has no desires of his own on your new fiance, you know?" And the Maer might say, "I am glad we're close, Ambrose. I'm glad you're on my side." And Ambrose might say, "I'm just doing it for the greater good." Don't you think Kvothe will laugh at the irony of that? He will, I promise.
Roger Pavelle
310. RogerPavelle
RE: Ambrose tracking Kvothe

My impression has been that Ambrose arranged for the pirate attack on Kvothe's ship, which everyone thought was fatal to him (and of which he was possibly the only survivor).

I don't see any evidence that news of Kvothe's survival got back to the University before him. Ambrose may later find out about Kvothe's association with the Maer, but don't see him trying to influence the Maer to kick out Kvothe.

Kate Hunter
311. KateH
@rogerpavelle, #310

Thinking on it further, I agree with you about Ambrose not knowing K is alive until they're both back at the university. I don't think he would knowingly have made himself out to be wrong in telling Wil and Sim that K was dead if he knew that wasn't true. If Ambrose was home in Vintas, so close to Severin, it's odd that word didn't reach him of a mysterious red-head at the Maer's court, but it does seem that Ambrose was in the dark there. I wonder if Ambrose ever really left town at all. He was at the Uni/Imre at some point to "hear the news" that K's ship had sunk. Was he simply laying low the whole time?

And the more I think about it, the more convinced I am that Devi has only just given information to someone about K's collateral and the information about it to someone. She may not even know that it's Ambrose after the information. But Ambrose has just gotten intel that will allow him to hurt K very badly without laying a finger on him. Hurting or killing D would suit him just fine. It's less obvious than attacking K directly, which would make the masters very suspicious given K & A's longstanding animosity. And Ambrose may well have a lingering minor grudge against D herself. I'd be surprised if this doesn't happen in book 3. It would also give K obvious grounds for all out vengeance against Ambrose.

When Devi loans K money for his trip, she says once again that the debt could be settled if he were to turn over certain information, meaning access to the Archives. When he gets back and is able to repay her, she tries not to take his money. But she does not bring up paying in favors or information instead of coin. She's already got her access by that point I think.

@robocarp, #309 re Penitent King
I'm still not really arguing for epithet vs. title, but...Whether or not the king is liked, or the war largely supported by the populace really gives us no information one way or the other about the king's penitence. An individual king might add "Penitent" either sincerely or as a PR stunt, and that might be viewed by the populace either appovingly or cynically. If it's an inherited title, the populace might think this particular king is a good Penitent, or not. Populations can dislike a leader and yet support a war, or vice versa. Propaganda is surely available to kings of the 4C world too, and what war has ever been waged without it? We just don't have the information to argue much about "Penitent," unfortunately.
Carl Banks
312. robocarp
If I may, I'd like to pose a little poll question:

What discussions here or elsewhere have firmly convinced you of something you thought was ridiculous when you first heard it?

For me, the major one was the idea that Denna is casting magic with her braids. The evidence and arguments posted here completely reversed me on the matter (although my major objection to it went away when I realized that she might be doing it with her sleeping mind, which would be more congruent with her character, IMO).
Kate Hunter
313. KateH
I wouldn't say I'm "firmly convinced" about much of anything that's come out of discussions. Netalia=Laurian would be the exception. I'm more in the camp of "sure looks likely, but we'll have to wait and see" about pretty much everything. Having done my own obsessive re-read, I now have hundreds of little "facts" to ponder that escaped my notice before. Many of them are surely significant. But they don't add up to a big picture yet.

I do think there's something going on with D's braids. I'm not entirely sure that it's magic, but I do think that she believes the braids are efficacious in some way, magical or otherwise.

It's fair to say I have a LOT more questions than I did before the obsessive re-read, and not a lot more answers.
314. Valarya
Hello all... so nice that I found this reread series! I've been discussing these books with friends for several years now and am currently rereading for the 3rd time (about halfway through WMF right now). I have combed every post and HUNDREDS of comments. I'm not sure where else to put a new (for me) theory right now.. but as this is the most recent post, here it goes. It's rather short and rather vague but it just struck me as I was reading last night.

In Severen, when Denna sings her version of Lanre to Kvothe, and they begin arguing about it being 'wrong,' Denna says:
"The whole story falls apart if Lanre isn't the hero."
And Kvothe replies:
"It's not about what makes a good story. It's about what's true."
Now how many times has Kote told Chronicler that he's telling the true story here. That he wishes he could make excuses for certain things he said at times, or gloss over parts that make him sound less than desirable. But he won't. Because this is his actual accounting.
For some reason this little exchange about Lanre being hero or not makes me feel that book 3 will end with Kvothe ending his story and nothing after.
This story within a story doesn't need to have a hero if it's a true-telling.
Wallace Forman
315. WallaceForman

For me it's Selitos=Cthaeh. It wasn't exactly ridiculous the first time I saw it, but it was embedded in a string of seemingly far-fetched predictions and theories, so I didn't have the patience to examine it. After a few rereads though, the echoes between the two characters grew louder for me. Instead of seeming overought and implausible, it began to feel like an elegant simplification.

There are lots of small connections, and a few larger theories that I discovered via the rereads that struck me as immediately correct. (Denna doing hair magic, Roderic is the king killed, Newarre in or near Vintas, Master Loren is with the Amyr)

Several theories look plausible and intriguing but uncertain. (Auri is princess Ariel, Kvothe changed his name - or was it stolen - or broken - or is it all a beautiful game, the fae are loose in the world, Kvothe was killed and resurrected, Tehlu & co. are reborn periodically into the world, Ambrose might not be trying to have Kvothe killed, Taborlin the seventh member of the Chandrian)

Some seem to me implausible despite intriguing evidence in their favor. (Copper has no name, Bredon is Denna's patron)

A few others seem to have little or no evidence justifying their popularity. (Adem really don't have "man-mothers")

A couple of theories occurred to me independently of the reread, and I still believe them. (Meluan is Kvothe's aunt, Master Ash is Cinder, Myr Tariniel in the Fae)
316. BigVik
After reading the books several times, and reading this post-series for a few years I finaly decided to put my 2 cents in on the topics that I think were either not mentioned at all, or just in passing and I believe deserve more attention:

1. Homages and honorable mentions: Some people already discussed here how Rothfuss pays homage to Tolkien in several places. I'd like to add to that the whole treatment of the swords in Ademre. Ancient swords with names, personalities and histories reminded me a lot of Silmarillion and the tale of Turin and his sword Anglachel. What surprised me is that no one, to my knowledge, made connections between Terry Pratchett's Diskworld novels and some instances in Kingkiller cycle. For example, the whole episode where Kvothe saves two girls from the false Ruh reminded me of Pratchett's stories about the witches of Lancre (sounds like Lanre, haha). It's not only particular people (Krin -- Tiffany Aching; Gran -- Granny Weatherwax; Jason -- Jason Ogg) that resemble characters from TPs witch cycle books, but the whole situation does the way it is written. Another parallel is with H. P. Lovecraft -- the somewhat relativistic approach to issues of moral values are typical Lovecraftian device, but what struck me is that Cthaeh resembles Cthulhu in some aspects, name being one of them (try finding a word in English language that starts with "cth"), other being that both are imprisoned but able to communicate with those willing to do so with these communications never leading to anything "good". Interestingly, one of the main deities of Chtulhu mythos is Dagon whose name is identical to our favorite Maer's soldier. Even more interestingly, the only known survivor of the contact with Dagon described him as a Polyphemus, a one-eyed (like PRs Dagon) cyclops from the Odyssey. PR lists Tolkien, TP and HP Lovecraft's work among his "must read" list of books, so it's safe to assume he is familiar enough to make these references. Other than that I have no proof that these are for real, and I'm not claiming that even if they are they may have any impact on the actual story.

2. Adem Chandrian: Vashet's horrified reaction to Kvothe's question regarding sword-breaking reminded me that one of the Chandrian figures on Nina's vase was a woman holding a broken sword. If this turns out to be Grey Dalcenti (never speaks) or Pale Alenta that would be indicative of Adem (pre-Adem) straying from Lethani and going full-blown Chandrian. I'm also thinking that Chandrian must have access to the same swords that Adem do, remember Cinder's sword -- it didn't rust in the presence of the one of his colleagues that causes iron to rust, indicating that it has to have been made with some old magic/technology that prevents that kind of damage. Is there anything in the sword-hut scene that mentions or hints at empty sword sockets?

3. Name of the Sword: How do Adem exactly know a list of owners of every sword in their possession and their most important deeds? Some of these swords predate Adem culture by 1000's of years so who would have exactly kept these records? I mean, it's not like there was a scribe following the owner of Saicere during the Drossen Tor writing down who he killed before getting himself/herself killed. My theory is that Adem have long cultivated powerful Namers amongst themselves (Magwyn) who are able to look at a thing and tell its whole history, then as a safetyguard they wrote it all down.

4. Who's your daddy?: There is an odd amount of information regarding parenting in the books that have been examined in these threads. Everything seems to point to Kvothe not being exactly Arlinden's son (Arlinden's own suggestion to his wife that God is the father which she didn't exactly deny; the Tehlu/Menda story that suggests that "gods/angels" can indeed impregnate human women; the whole "you look Fae around the edges" theme following Kvothe; Bast being teased as a potential father of some of the kids in the frame; the stories of baby-stealing Fae; just to name a few), but this may be a red herring masking something else, or maybe not. My favorite theory is that Denna was the actual daughter of Arlinden and Laurian, stolen at birth by Fae and replaced by Kvothe (though how would a girl be replaced by a boy pass unnoticed is beyond me). I have no evidence for this except for some passing similarities between facialand physical features of Laurian, Meluan and Denna and the innuendos listed above. Still, it's something I'd like discussed more.

5. (The lack of) Dancing with Denna: Kvothe is what I would call a deductive reductionist. He analyzes the problem, gets to know everything about it, breaks it down into small pieces (reduction) and then rebuilds it from there (deduction). This is a great approach in explaining/predicting/manipulating simple systems, but it fails miserably when confronted by a complex problem where the whole has properties not easily derived by simply summing up the properties of the parts. It's like a difference between mechanics and evolutionary biology. The latter requires a fair ammount of inductive wholistic approach, which Kvothe is uncomfortable with. All the disciplines that require more than just analysis and deduction are problematic to him (Naming, ketan...). His ingenuity comes from either being thaught (Heart of Stone) or inventing (Spinning Leaf) states of mind that would allow him to take the required steps back in order to see the forest and not just the individual trees. He's not there yet with Naming, but I think Elodin s making progress. I don't know if he'll get a skill there with an appropriate name, but one skill is obviously and painfully missing. I'll call it Dancing with Denna. Denna is one of those problems. He tries to analyze it and he always fails, and he's yet to invent a state of mind that would allow him to approach Denna in an appropriate way. Something tells me he won't develop it in D3, but will rather go and do something foolish like he did binding the air to his lungs in NotW.

6. What's wrong with us?: This is a logical continuation of the previous point. I think we depend too much on the deductive methods to try to figure the book out. Don't get me wrong, those methods gave some wonderful results (like the whole "not tally a lot less" thing), but we're not discussing the big picture. So Kvothe is a Lackless, so what? How does that inform us on the nature and goals of the Chandrian? I think we may want to write down these basic questions and come up with some answers that fit the facts, not the other way around trying to figure out the answers from the facts. I think PR gives us some hints along the way. For example Kvothe starts the story "When Aleph...", which is taken as a joke, but it may hide deeper meaning that there was something at the very beginning of the world that's important even in the frame. Also, Scarpi's "all stories are one story". What stories? Do things repeat, which story parallels which (Kvothe and Denna seem to me like Iax and Ludis, but that's just me). This is very broad topic and aproach and I know I don't offer much here, but again I'd like more discussions like these.

6b. Signs and wonders (and questions): Is anyone bothered by Stercus being a thrall of iron, yet Ferule is "iron bound"? Are we missing some kind of simmilar connection between the other Chandrian, some runes whose name we don't know yet? Are these current Chandrian the original ones, the traitors of the six cities? If not, what hapened to the previous club members? What was their ticket out? "All lives end in death excepting one" would suggest at least the possibility of death for all of them except Haliax. So does the mention of 13 Chandrian and the matter-of-fact tone by which Shehyn discusses Kvothe's desire to kill some of them (did Adem get rid of the potential Adem-Chandrian --see above?). Who would have filled the empty spots? I could go on like this forever...

8. Folly. Not the sword (Cinder's maybe?), the chapter. I'm surprised by Jo's thinking this is Hemme's folly, I thought of it as Kvothe's. The first rule of any heist is not to get careless with the money you stole. The second one is not to steal too much. And that's exactly what Kvothe has done there. First, he took too much. Second, he's flaunting it publicly for everyone to see. I think that Hemme and Ambrose are not the thick simpletons Kvothe is taking them for. These are the players of the ugly, Beautiful Game and all they have to do now is visit the Bursar (or whatever, sorry another Terry Pratchett reference) and add a few numbers. I think this will be the grounds for Kvothe's final expulsion from the University.

9. Love thy name is Felurian: Apart from the whole thing of actualy letting him go with his sanity and life, which is very un-Felurian like, I noticed Felurian gave Kvothe a ring of leaves as one of the gifts. Now, it seems that Fae and Vintas have a special connection, so it's not hard to imagine that they have similar ring gifting customs. Ring of leaves is similar to ring of grass, which has been told to represent love. This love may be a Fae kind of love, not entirely identical to human/mortal love. Fae seem to represent sort of embodied ideas rather than real people, so this change of heart for Felurian is very strange indeed. Maybe it hapened when Kvothe called out her name. Maybe he inadverently shaped her name and herself at the same time and made her "love" him.

10. (and last for now) What's more important than an interview with Kvothe?: Chronicler heard a rumor, but he wouldn't have traveled towards dangerous parts of the land had he not have the meeting with the Earl of Baedyn-Bryt. Earl? These guys rank lower than Princess and Dukes if Rothfuss follows western European styles of noble families. Still, Chronicler risks everything to go and meet with this guy. He even buys a brand new (royal blue!) shirt for a talent presumably for this meeting (the soldier ends up stealing it, we see it on a skindancer (??) later on). He finds Kvothe, the largest catch in his biographical career, yet he frets and frowns and tries to negotiate to leave. I mean who is this guy Baedyn-Bryt!? Why is Skarpi with him? Is this some kind of Amyr meeting? Still, why would it be more important than interview with Kvothe? Thoughts?
Carl Banks
317. robocarp

That's some good ruminating there. We should busy for days with this. I have a couple responses.

1. Cthulhu was the first thing I thought when I read the Cthaeh's name, and probably the same was true for a lot of people. I never really went back to it since I just don't see much similarity beyond the name. Then again I am not exactly the biggest Lovecraft reader. The Tolkien connection is pretty clear, and I've invoked it a bit myself in some theories I've made. (One data point in my Creation War theory is that it echoes Tolkien: Men came across a mountain range heading west, displacing the fairy-like creatures who fled into their enchanted realm--a point supporting my theory that the enemy in the Creation War came from across Stormwal.) Of course, it's not like anyone ever was out on a limb to suggest someone's fantasy novel called back to Tolkien.

2. Cinder also broke Trip's sword, I think. I think this is a very keen observation. Apart from the blue flame, one theme of the Chandrian seems to be colorlessness, and that would mean they physically resemble the Adem most. And we see they're big on violating at least one Adem taboo.

3. This is only point you make that I disagree with. I think that it's highly likely that the Adem are direct cultural (and probably genetic) descendants of Creation War era peoples. Remember: Shehyn's Creation War story says it was about the Adem "before they were Adem". It matches Skarpi's (and presumably Denna's) stories closely, so is reliable. The reason the Adem have Creation-War-era weapons, and their histories, is because they've had them in their possession since the Creation War. And, to me at least, it's very clear that the Adem tradition of memorizing a sword's history was originally part of an oral tradition. (This, incidentally, is the main reason I believe writing hadn't yet been invented at the time of the Creation War.) So, I'm afraid I don't see anything amiss about the Adem, the weapons, and their histories: it all fits. Also, this could account for similarities between the Chandrian and the Adem: they are cultural siblings.

4. Maybe Kvothe and Denna are brother and sister, or at least cousins. Maybe Laurian or Meluan had Denna out of wedlock and had to send her to the Four Corners version of a convent? It would explain Meluan's similarity to Denna. Only problem is: this has been done to death, and PR has said he is not a fan of doing things that have been done to death. I'm not sure I have much of an opinion on whether Kvothe is Arliden's son; until we have an idea who the father might be, it's not clear how it would matter. OTOH there are a couple reasons it matter if he's a Lackless. Even illegitimate children have been known to squeeze into the family estate, with heirs to the throne in Vint dropping like flies, some intrigue with Kvothe seems ready to play out. Also, the Lackless poem has a line in it: "One a son who brings the blood." One interpretation is that you need a true Lackless to do whatever the poem describes.

6b. That line of the poem always nagged at me. Stercus seems to be the person who causes iron to rust (it doesn't match anyone else's sign) but he's in thrall of it? My best guess is that Chandrians' "signs" are things they have to do to eliminate things they are vulnerable to. He's in thrall of iron, so he has to cause it to rust to nullify it. Cyphus has to make fire blue because orange fire is deadly. Etc. Interesting point about the Chandrians' revolving door membership. We've discussed it in a limited sense (did Kvothe kill Cinder and thus become a Chandrian?) but I don't recall anyone proposing that it's a regular process.

8. Good observation. I think you're absolutely right.

9. I believe that Felurian was moved to pity (perhaps for the first time ever, or the first time since "long ago") after Kvothe's encounter to the Cthaeh. K realized that she was trying to comfort him and didn't know how, so she seems to have developed some actual feelings toward him. I don't know if this happened before or after she gave him the leaf ring, but I think it's reasonable to say there was at least a little bit of actual love involved.
318. BigVik

Thanks for the welcome! These boards have been up for so long I was afraid I was talking to the Wind...

I was actually writing my 10 points from work (no employee of the month today, I guess) and had no access to the books, but now just browsing through them it seems that some of the points are getting some extra support. For example 5. (and 6. to some extent). We tend to dismiss Hemme as a buffoon (I know I did), but look at the first question he asked Kvothe about the 9 major fallacies: Simplification, Generalization, Circularity, Reduction, Analogy, False causality, Semantism, Irrelevancy and Nalt (maybe Folly? or Overambition?). Well, I already and not knowing this list covered Reduction, Generalization and Analogy. I bet we can find instances of Kvothe's strayings into the other ones. But I also think a lot of times we do this ourselves when analyzing this book, PR is probably giving us a lot that can cause False causalty, etc. Or I maybe overthinking this.

Also, I forgot about one curious thing that I didn't mention in the previous post and I don't think I found it on these boards or not in great extent anyway: When Denna and Kvothe meet for the first time in that caravan (at least for the first time that he's telling us so far) they spend an evening looking at the clouds. Denna describes the shapes of the clouds as Rose, Harp and Waterfall. Rose? Why rose? The latter Denna shows disdain for roses, yet here she names a cloud after them. Harp is even more prophetic considering what she learns to play, or not prophetic at all if she'd already started back then and obfuscated the fact. The only waterfall that comes to mind is the one from the Draccus episode. I can't believe that PR just randomly put these three objects there. Maybe I'm guilty of Semantism and Irrelevancy here, I admit.

Also, I'm not sure if I'm breaking some sort of good manners by replying so fast. I'll always try to add something new and not make this into a chatboard. However, if there's some etiquette that I'm breaking please let me know.

Anyway, I'm back to re-reading the books and I will see if I can get any more insights into it. Haven't had this much fun with books since I was a boy.
jum bles
319. jumbles
Thanks for bringing up the nine prime fallacies. I had always meant to try to figure out which fallacy Nalt refers to, but never got around to it and eventually forgot about it. The fallacies are most likely all logical fallacies. I'll try to match up the other eight first to limit the options for Nalt.

First the most obvious ones:
Generalization: this most probably is exactly what it says
Circularity: probably circular reasoning (aka Begging the Question)
Analogy: most likely exactly what it says
False Causality: most likely exactly what it says

Less obvious:
Semantism: probably Ambiguity (using words with multiple meanings) and/or Vagueness (using words with unclear meanings)
Irrelevancy: probably Red Herring (changing the subject, attacking the arguer instead of the argument, attacking a Straw Man)

Not clear to me:
Simplification and Reduction
One could be False Dilemma (assuming fewer possibilities than there are)
One could be Fallacy of the Single Cause (assuming one simple cause when there could be multiple causes)
One could be the fallacy of Division (assuming the parts of something have the same qualities of that thing)
One could be the fallacy of Composition (assuming something has the same qualities as its parts)
Simplification and Reduction could also be different aspects of the same fallacy or could be combinations of multiple fallacies.

So Nalt could be something unused from the Simplification and Reduction section, or could be:
False Authority (using misleading statistics)
Appeal to Ignorance (assuming something is true or false because the opposite cannot be proven)
Gambler's Fallacy or Hot Hand Fallacy (assuming past results influence future results)
Suppressed Evidence (only considering one side of the argument)
Special Pleading (creating a double standard)
Wishful Thinking (assuming something is true because it is desirable)

I think all we know about Nalto is that he was an Aturan Emperor, Kvothe considers him an inept egomaniac, his name seems to be used as an insult (see Pike in Tarbean), he was alive when the Amyr were disbanded, and Wilem thinks thinks Nalto is "history's favorite whipping boy."
Unfortunately I don't think this is sufficient knowledge to determine which fallacy Nalt refers to.

If I got something wrong, omitted something, or misrepresented something; please say so. It's been years since I took a philosophy class.
320. BigVik

I think Reduction is refering to reductionistic approach to problem. It is a legitimate approach in Mathematics, Physics and to some extent chemistry, but it runs into trouble in any science dealing with complex, non-reducible phenomena. The jist of the approach is to reduce a problem to a subset of simple parts, find solutions for each of the parts, then build back from there for a generalized solution. A good example is planetary mechanics: it is almost impossible to calculate all the trajectories of all the objects in the Solar System all together, but it's fairly simple to do it for each object separately, then build from there. However, in complex systems where the whole assumes characteristics that are more than the sum of its parts this approach fails (I think this is quite explicitly said to Kvothe by Elodin and others throughout the books and he continually fails to grasp this concept). For example, no matter how much you study the chemical properties of individual nucleotides that will in no way inform you about the information content of a particular piece of DNA which dependes on the order of the nucleotides, as well as on the interactions with the cellular transcription machinery.

If I had to pick something for Nalt, it's Arrogance combined with Ignorance that leads to taking on more that you can chew.
jum bles
321. jumbles
What you described for Reduction sounds to me like the fallacy of Composition.

I wonder what fallacy Kvothe commits most often or leads to the most trouble. I feel like that could be a good indicator about what Nalt is.
Ryan Murray
322. TheYllest
Just came back to the thread after an extended break. I noticed the recent discussion starting with KateH@301 regarding the "Penitent" king.
In reading this I seemed to remember a mention of something relating to the Tehlin church and Penitence. Sure enough there are only three uses of the word "Penitent" in the books, two mentions the "Penitent King" and the third occured during the Midwinter Pageantry in Tarbean:
Grey-robed priests followed along beside the wagon, ringing bells and chanting. Many of them wore the heavy iron chains of penitent priests.
This seems to indicate a sect/branch/level of Tehlinism apart from normal priesthood which for some unexplained reason, the priests are called penitent and wear heavy chains as penance. Penance practices are considered extreme in many cases but are not unheard of in modern religions, and as PR has shown a tendency to rely on real world mythos/religion/language, I would postulate that the Penitent Priests are a zealous and perhaps extreme sect of Tehlinists to whom the Penitent King belongs .

We already know sects with diverging ideology exist within the religion as detailed by PR in his blog relating to Trapis and the schism to do with the Mender Heresies. I could not begin to speculate where the Penitent sect fits into the mesh of Tehlinism, but I think our dear Penitent King is a subscriber to their particular ideology, and that his title is not derivative of something for which he personally claims responsibility and must serve penance.
323. Marco.
Question for those with better memories than me:

Does anybody remember about how many months before the release of WMF (March 2011) that he announced that the book was done?

jum bles
324. jumbles
I believe the release date was announced almost ten months in advance.

Edit to add Wikipedia quote:
On April 28, 2010, Rothfuss confirmed the book's release date as March 1, 2011
So yeah, almost ten months.
325. Marco.
Thanks much.

I was harboring hopes for a March 2014 release. Apparently that ship sailed months ago.
Sahi Rioth
326. Sahirioth
Marco, I have a suggestion. The only thing making the wait bearable for me, is the fact that another book I've been waiting for (6 years!) is being published next week. If you haven't already, go read Scott Lynch's "Gentleman Bastard" sequence (2 books already, 3rd next week). If I were to make a list of my all-time favourite fantasy authors, PR would be at the top, with Lynch as a close second and author #3, while being a great author, following far behind. I believe the appropriate colloquial expression to describe Lynch's books would be "da bomb".
Kate Hunter
327. KateH
Thanks for that recommendation, Sahirioth. Our library at least has book 1 of that series, and they're pretty good at ILL's or buying stuff outright if I ask nicely. Will check that out post haste.

For my 2 cents I'll highly recommend the work of Ursula K. Le Guin to anyone unfamiliar with it. Her short stories are easier for some to start with. _Birthday of the World_ or _Tales of Earthsea_ would be great points of entry to her work. Superlatives don't really suffice to describe her writing, in my opinion.

And here's hoping that PR is simply keeping the pub date close to his chest, and we won't have to wait 10 months once he makes the announcement. An early 2014 date is among my fondest wishes at the moment.
John Graham
328. JohnPoint
Actually it *could* still happen next spring. Pat announced in April 2010 that he informed his editor he would be finished with all writing and beta-reading by Sept 2010, which led to a publication date ~6 months later. So IF he were close to the point of being done (everything but copy editing) we could be in the 6 month window. That said, he has been awfully quiet about it, so I doubt that we're that close yet...
Patrick Stultz
329. Audion
So has anyone else ever wondered where K got all the gold he has now? We know he faked his own death.. did he claim the bounty on his own head too?
Sahi Rioth
330. Sahirioth
@Audion, 329
We know K faked his own death? afaik there's only speculation on that. What we do know is that he's assumed to be dead (though not necessarily by everyone) and that he has done nothing to dissuade people from thinking so, with the exception of Chronicler and... Aaron?
Kate Hunter
331. KateH
I think K's conversation with Aaron lends a LOT of support to the theory that he faked his own death. He says that if he were Kvothe, he'd fake his own death and then open an inn in some out of the way place. K also upbraids the Chronicler for finding him, saying that the point of being "dead" is that no one comes looking for you, and thus you're safe. It's not absolutely conclusive that he faked his own death, but it would be odd if it turned out to be otherwise.

And yes, Audion, I have wondered where all the money comes from. K is absolutely loaded in the frame story, ordering items made of an absurdly expensive wood, tipping craftsmen extravagently, failing to charge hard up customers for what they order, in possession of fine paper and ink, able to break two gold royals, stocking all manner of exotic drinks, overpaying for what he orders from farmers, and destroying his own property so as to have a reason to hire poor villagers. Frankly, it stretches credulity that this sort of behavior wouldn't make him stick out like a sore thumb in a village of very modest means. Word would get around sooner or later that K was rather generous with his coin. And that would surely be a topic of much conversation.

@322 TheYllest re: Penitent...

I would be more persuaded of this if the "penitent" priests were capitalized. Real world analogies would be Jesuits, Benedictines, Poor Clares, etc. - all capitalized. The penitent priests in chains during the midwinter festival could be individual priests performing a sort of personal penance, after which they might no longer wear such chains. That could be either motivated by private conscience or required by their church superiors as a public punishment. Or they could be priests acting the part of some customary element of the midwinter pagent, like three kings or Mary & Joseph in nativity plays. I can't rule out the possibility that they are indeed members of an order of priests within the greater Tehlin church. I just don't see evidence to support one interpretation over another.
thistle pong
332. thistlepong
@329-331 re: death faking

I agree with KateH. The hypothetical meets the real in the Frame. Kvothe's supposed to be dead. Thus, the narrative's likely to include a fake. We can be said to know that.

@322, 331 re: penitent chains

It's come up before, but I can't remember where. Whether the chains denote an order or an act, it's possible they're what's behind the "Penitent" in Penitent King. It's capitalized due to it's association with the monarch in either case. The war's young yet. It's easy to imagine him still under onus.


I've wanted to respond for awhile, but... things.

I've become convinced that much of what I syncretized in the timeline is only guesswork of varying quality due to your critique and/or that the general tenor of your assiduous questioning is worth more than fitting pieces together.

Similarly, AnotherAndrew's admonition to not dismiss obvious answers keeps a lot of possibilities alive.

Initially, JohnPoint's theory about the shard of mountain glass from "Lanre Turned" and the contents of the Loeclos struck me as kind of silly. Y'all know how I feel about that these days. I managed to convince myself of something that feels very wrong to a lot of people.

SusanLoyal made the Reread worth following with her, also intially hard to swallow, theory about the sleeping mind an Skarpi.

Among the first theories anywhere was that Denna was Netalia Lackless. I actually came online about a week after release to drop the "Not Tally" bombshell and found that alekhia had carpet bombed every discussion just days before. And yet, as more folks come with more bits of text and reasoning, I tend to fall just a little on the Denna side now.

A couple others stand out for their sheer audacity. A Fox's parallels between Cinder and Dagon are amazing. Sadly I forget who proposed which theory of the creation of Faen, but I'm reasonably convinced any or all of them might be true.

I'd credit the foundations of any work I've done with the alchemical symbolism in the series to LanceShaubert and Merihathor. I completely dismissed it at first because I didn't understand it. Now it couldn't be more obvious.

Most recently, like in the last month, I'd say KateH convinced me that there's a story actually happening in the frame rather than a simple continuation of events following the narrative. I've been so used to working the story like a puzzle that I reasounding failed to notice that the Kote of the first seven chapters of NotW wasn't or at least might not be the same man we see at the end of WMF. He's still capable of growth and change.

There's certainly more, but, y'know... things.
Ryan Murray
333. TheYllest
Just had random realization about a theory that has been tossed around here more than a few times. In Skarpi's story of Lanre and Myr Tariniel, there is a clear day/night cycle.
"The buildings were...carved of a bright white stone that held the sun’s light long after evening fell"
"Selitos watched night settle in the mountains"
"For a night and a day Selitos stood helpless beside Lanre"
This should remove any doubts about whether or not Myr Tariniel or the Ergen Empire were in the Fae, unless something about how the Fae works has drastically changed since the events of the story. I don't think Myr Tariniel being firmly planted in the 4C provides us with any particularly juicy insights, but may make us more hesitant to jump down those tempting rabbit holes.
Carl Banks
334. robocarp
Wow, I honestly can't say it even occurred to me that Kvothe didn't fake his own death. I can't think of the slightest clue as to where he might have got the money, so everything here is a complete guess, but:
1. Spoils (taken perhaps from whichever king he killed)
2. Inherited from the Lacklesses
3. Found a secret treasure (a la Count of Monte Cristo)
4. Bought a winning ticket in the Modegan lottery
John Graham
335. JohnPoint
I've thought about where Kvothe came up with all of his money, but don't have anything definitive. Presumably, he had at least 500 talents, since that's what a good-sized roadside inn would cost:
I juggled numbers in my head, converting the contents of the box to a more familiar currency, and came up with more than 500 silver talents. Enough money to buy a good-sixed roadside inn, or an entire farmstead with all the livestock and equipage included.
I think there are at least three other possibilities to robocarp's thoughts @334 -

5. Proceeds from artificary, perhaps from the Bloodless and/or other schema that he invented.
6. He may have had a patron who decided to help him fake his death / go into hiding.
7. He earned it between D2 and The Event, though work or being granted money/titles etc (as the Maer should have given him following his service in Severen).
336. Fester
regarding the Nalt debate

Has anyone mentioned that it might not be related to the emporer's actions, but be a word that sounds like or contains "nalt"?

Searching a text version of a dictionary for "nalt" and excluding non-english words comes up with


Assuming the fallacy contains "nalt" directly and not some abridged or phonetic variation (big assumptions, I know) it's probably Commonalty. Does that fit with the existing schools of thought?
Steven Halter
337. stevenhalter
robocarp@312:The theory that has most gained credence with me after I initially dismissed it would be the Selitos==Cthaeh theory. While I still don't think it is "correct" I think that it has merit and could be an explanation.
The reason I put quotes around correct is that since we are dealing with an imaginary world, correct is really what Pat says is correct. For example, book 3 could start off with (very doubtful):
Denna awoke from her odd dream of someone named Kvothe and went back to her dull job as a cashier at the 7-11 on 14th St.
This would render pretty much all of our theories "incorrect" in one sense. So, future writing can confirm or denty large swaths of reasoning.
The evidence we have to reason against is only a somewhat consistent set. Parts of the work are myth, parts are incompletely remembered history, parts are based upon unreliable narration (from K and others) and parts are intentional red herrings planted by PR.
This allows room for a very wide range of theories as quite possible. I don't really think of theories as "silly" or not silly but rather more or less likely and more or less aesthetically pleasing. More or less likey is based upon the apparant firmness of evidence. For example, it seems fairly clear that Kvothe has red hair and PR would be unlikely to suddenly assert that Kvothe's hair was really purple.
Selitos == Cthaeh (as an example) seems to be contradicted by timelines, but these timelines are based upon poorly remembered history/mythology and so it would be fairly easy for PR to assert that this was in fact "correct".
Aesthetic correctness is mainly subjective in nature. For example, I rather like the idea that the Ademre are parthenogenic in nature. I find that a fun subversion of several tropes. PR could assert the factualness of this either way based upon the evidence, but I would prefer the parthenogenic way based upon level of fun (for me).
Wallace Forman
338. WallaceForman

Nice catch. The obvious retort, however, is that Skarpi's story may simply be stylized. "Too much truth confuses the facts. Too much honesty makes you sound insincere."

Given the size of the body of evidence supporting a Faen location for Myr Tariniel (see e.g. here) I'd say this creates more doubt, rather resolves it.
339. Marco.
Thanks for the recommendation. I've read those, and
I didn't enjoy the 2nd at all. It felt to me like he had a half written pirate novel on the shelf, dusted it off, changed the names and wrapped another story around it. Didn't work for me at all.
End spoiler.

So you're telling me there's a chance....
jum bles
341. jumbles
From NotWc8:
And then there was Abenthy, my first real teacher. He taught me more than all the others set end to end. If not for him, I would never have become the man I am today. I ask that you not hold it against him. He meant well.

Isn't the man he is today a broken and depressed man? I always took it as meaning Abenthy started Kvothe on the path to power and greatness which then led to Kvothe doing some not so great things. But that was the man Kvothe was. Now he is an innkeeper waiting to die. So if Abenthy is responsible for Kvothe being who he is now (Kote, not Kvothe), then maybe that means Abenthy is the one who betrayed him. And Kvothe seems to harbor no ill will towards him, so maybe he realizes now that the betrayal was to stop him from doing some pretty bad stuff.
Pure Speculation: Abenthy could also be responsible for Kvothe's current lack of power.

An unrelated quote from that same chapter. This one of Abenthy arguing with the Mayor of one of Greyfallow's towns:
"...told you. I don't have a license. I don't need a license. Does a peddler need a license? Does a tinker need a license?"
"You're not a tinker," the mayor said. "Don't try to pass yourself off as one."
"I'm not trying to pass myself off as anything," the old man snapped. "I'm a tinker and a peddler, and I'm more than both. I'm an arcanist, you great dithering heap of idiot."

I never took Abenthy seriously about being a tinker, but maybe he is. Interesting that he pretty much says an arcanist can do anything a tinker can and then some. I thought tinkers were more special than that. The most probable explanation is that Abenthy was just blowing hot air in his anger. Still, though, it's something to think about...
Kate Hunter
342. KateH
Interesting points, Jumbles. I don't have a useful response, but agree they're worth pondering.
343. BoobShaper69
First post. Sorry if repeating/stealing ideas. This community is awesome.

So Kvothe binds a drab to chalk at the Eolian to show Denna magic ("...murmurs a binding"). Sim and Wil challenge the binding with their belief that the chalk and drab are not the same thing. This 2 on 1 Alar-off makes it harder for Kvothe to maintain binding.

Selitos binds Haliax to his inner name (“Your own name will be turned against you, that you shall have no peace”). The Chandrian challenge the binding with their belief that Lanre is not that man and was a hero. Ultimately if they can change enough minds, it's a world vs Selitos Alar-off in some sense, which makes it harder for Selitos to maintain his binding. This is why the Chandrian need to spread the word (Denna's song) and eliminate those who oppose that concept and try to get the world to associate them with "rainbows". This would go along with the overarching theme of "perception is reality", or if you think something strongly enough, it becomes true.

If Haliax can break the Selitos binding, he'll no longer be cursed by his inner name... but will still have issues with passing through any doors of grievance.

In the Battle of Drossen Tor, Lanre binds himself to the draccus-like creature, allows the draccus to kill it or kills himself, which results in both of their deaths (what a martyr stud). In binding himself though there's some magic nonsense that goes down, so when Lyra pulls him back to life he's actually a half enemy (Iax) and half Lanre (I saw someone mention the idea of Haliax = "salt of Iax")... meanwhile behind the doors of stone, a half enemy, half Lanre is awoken and steamed. Now Haliax is like "Dude I need to mend myself and get the rest of me behind those doors of stone... and in the meantime I need to break this lame binding Selitos dropped on my face."

Textual evidence is mostly that Lanre and the beast both die and Lanre's "cold", and then later he shows up in that "second-skin" black iron scale gear which could probably just be a figurative type thing for the storyteller to allude to his new situation.

Sooo yeah, I think Iax is behind the doors of stone and the Chandrian's plan is to get behind them so Iax can be restored in full.

Also, I have a Carrie Mathison corkboard in my room that is tracking the Chandrian.
John Graham
344. JohnPoint
Jumbles @341 --

I always interpreted the passage about Ben to mean that he started young-Kvothe on the path to become an arcanist, allowing him to go to the University at a young age, with all the tragic hero consequences as-of-yet unrevealed to us. Without Ben, Kvothe would not have been able to attend the U. Following the Chandrian attack (had he survived) he would have probably made it to Tarbean, lived on the street, and perhaps eventually been able to earn some money via music (maybe ultimately finding a Ruh troupe to join up with once more). However, Ben altered the course of his life, with many positive and negative consequences for Kvothe and the world.

I also have a bit of a different interpretation of the Ben/Tinker passage. Regardless of the true identity of Tinkers (whether they are Menders, Fae, or something else), I think that isn't well known to the world in general, so the Mayor thinks of a "tinker" as a "friendly old guy who travels and trades" and this is the concept of tinker that Ben refers to when he says he is "a tinker and a peddler, and ... more than both." And even if Tinkers are something more, I think it's certainly possible that Abenthy is indeed one.

Speaking of which, the idea of Tinkers being Fae or Menders (or both) is one of my answers to robocarp's poll question @312. Originally I thought they were just traveling traders, but the whole discussion of the Mender heresies and my discovery of Felurian's line about Fae traveling in the mortal "glamoured as a pack mule laden" have convinced me that there is definitely more to them than meets the eye. I think they are likely tied to both ideas -- traveling the world trying to fix the rift between the mortal and fae, or something along those lines.

@343 re Selitos and Haliax -- interesting theory. The idea that the Chandrian are trying to oppose Selitos's Alar is an interesting one that I haven't seen proposed. It raises the question of how exactly naming/shaping is related to sympathy (which we're led to believe are totally different, however I feel that sympathy is more of an application of shaping). It's definitely something to think about...
jum bles
345. jumbles
@343 re: Alar

The idea had been proposed elsewhere, but I don't think I had seen it on this site yet. The following quote from WMFc18 had been used to support the idea:
"There's a special way of thinking called Alar," Wilem said. "You believe something so strongly it becomes so." He lifted up one drab and the other followed it. "I believe these two drabs are connected, so they are." Suddenly the other drab clattered to the tabletop.
"If I stop believing, it stops being so."
Denna picked up the drab. "So it's like faith?" she said skeptically.

@344 re: Ben and Tinkers

I used to 100% agree with your interpretation of what Kvothe said about Ben's impact on his life. But now I'm no longer that sure about it.

About what tinkers are: just today I spotted something in the Spanish translation. "Tinker" is translated as "calderero." According to the internet, calderero translates back to English as "boilermaker" or, much more interestingly, "coppersmith." Why would a tinker be a coppersmith? Copper is apparently resistant/immune to naming. Also, Felurian mentions copper knives as being effective against the Fae. But I don't see why tinkers and copper should be related other than each of them being mysterious.
346. FalconGK81
re 345: The link between Tinker and translation to "coppersmith" is FANTASTIC. Copper is clearly very important to the story in a way we haven't fully learned yet. Nice catch.
John Graham
347. JohnPoint
Jumbles @345 --

"Tinker" re-translating as "coppersmith" makes some sense in English as well -- the term comes from traveling tinsmiths in Ireland who would repair household pots and utensils. Presumably from the "tink, tink, tink" sound made while they were beating dents out of pots. Many of which would have been made out of copper. We can guess that the tinkers in the 4C may likely have been named a similar way.

However, the connection to copper is intriguing. I strongly believe that they (or at least some of the "real" tinkers) have a strong connection to the fae (a la "glamoured as a pack mule laden...")
Carl Banks
348. robocarp

"Tinker" comes from the same root as "tin". Seeing that the Spanish translation means "boilermaker", I would guess that it's important that the word be related to metal work. Though it might not necessarily be the specific metal copper. Or it might be.

We know tin as a specific element, but in older times tin was just a generic word for metal or maybe base metal. So it wouldn't be wrong for tinkers to specialize in copper work, so maybe there's something to that. OTOH, the relationship of calderero to copper could be a coincidence, and Pat just wanted a word related to metalwork.

I highly suspect the other sense of "tinker", meaning to mess with something, is important as well. It could be that the Spanish word also carries this connotation and that's why it was selected. (Any native Spanish speakers?)

If tinkers are Fae, I think there could be a third (minor) reason to use the word "tinker".
jum bles
349. jumbles
Well this is disappointing. I'd been using online translators that just give whatever translation they think is best. I just used an online Spanish-English dictionary to get more (all?) English translations of calderero, and a third translation, "tinker," was listed. So as robocarp suggested, coppersmith may just be a big coincidence. Darn, I thought I was onto something there.
350. Vorbis
RE 316 BigVik's point 6b, I took the list of the signs of the Chandrian being things you could do to recognise them so you could run and hide.

Thus when you saw the man in thrall to iron, you'd know to clear out. So it has to be something that you can see and know as a warning sign.

Being in thrall is like being in bondage; bonded to something. I think that Stercus is connected to lodestones. Magnets: in thrall to iron. Or the other way around, depending on the size of the magnet vs the size of the iron. Whichever is bigger is pulled towards the other one.

When I was doing a re-read of NOTW on audiobook I was listening out for when they mentioned lodestones and it came up during Kvothes ride to Trebon when he meets the tinker.

"'A loden-stone? I've never seen one of these."
'Technically it's a Trebon-stone,' he said matter of factly. 'As it's never been to Loden, but you're near enough."

The tinker obviously found the stone there, which gives credence to the idea it was created during the Chandrian attack.

The tinker then says twice that he wasn't there at the Mauthen wedding, yet he is the only one nearby who has not heard about the attack. He then goes on to attempt to sell Kvothe exactly what he needs for his next adventure, demonstrating he has some way to know the future.

My half-cut theory is that if he is not in fact Chandrian himself (not there for the attack) he may be Amyr and have come after. Or angel, or singer - whatever they are who have some demonstration of foretelling. The only foreteller I know is the Cthaeh. But if it's been mentioned being connected with any of those orders, I'd cheerfully lump all tinkers in as members. After all, as Denna says later, "that's what you get for not listening to a tinker on the road... Clever boy like you has heard enough stories to know better." Tinkers have some power, have had it a long time.

I don't have any easy way to find references to loden-stones but if anyone has a kindle and can word search, if there's anyone who has a lot of loden-stones it might be a subtle way of saying he's a Chandrian.
351. BigVik
Vorbis@350, fantastic catch with loden-stone. Thrall of iron or iron bound, well isn't that exactly what magnetism is all about. As an aside, copper is not magnetic as anyone who tried to lift penny with a magnet knows. I have no idea if that has any meaning at all...

Anyway, onto my new meanderings: I've been carefully re-reading the first book, and I mean carefully - maybe a few pages per day, and I noticed something interesting. There is a series of chapters where Kvothe is introducing us to The Woman (we all think it's Denna, right?), but he already introduced us to her earlier on his way to Imre. That kept bothering me, and I have two explanations for it with some substantiation for both:
1. Denna is actually NOT The Woman in Kvothe's life. Gasp! you say. Hear me out. From a perspective of someone whose adolescence is far enough to be emotionally detahced, yet close enough to be able to remember it, Denna reminds me of a "crush" from someone's teenage years. Crush in all the various meanings, and probably the one that got away... even now I sometimes wistfully think of them! She feels like someone who Kvothe thinks about and fantasizes about, you know living together, kids, adventures... real obsession, but in reality that's not the one you settle down with or the one you should settle down with for a variety of reasons. Infatuation passess eventually, even if you sometimes turn back and remember it fondly, but you build a life with someone else, someone who's there for and with you, a different kind of fondness, not the ethereal, uplifting one, but the more earthy, warm, grounded one. I know I'm fumbling, but as a married man trust me I know what I'm feeling, if not what I'm talking about. There are some hints to this in the story, too numerous to list but here are some off top of my head: Kvothe's initial comparison of Denna to Felurian (the night he won his talent pipes) -- Felurian, definitely da bomb, but not someone you'd get up at night to change diapers; Fela's insight into Kvothe as told to Sim (kind of more poetic summary of my bumbling above); Kvothe's long intro into The Woman, yet whenever he mentions she's coming up, another girl shows up instead (first Devi, then Auri), then she just shows up all of a sudden without this initial chapter intro; comparing The Woman with a startled animal which fits Auri to the T but not Denna in the slightest; Kvothe's answer to Bast that if he didn't talk to Denna in Eolian there wouldn't be a story to tell -- not "she's the one" but rather "she's a plot device". There are also some potential structural problems with their romantic involvement -- as I hypothesized in an earlier post, Denna and Kvothe may be related by blood (Meluan, Laurian, Denna physical comparisons hint at striking similarities) which would create an interesting story arch that has been exploited many times from Greek tragedies on. Two more recent examples: Tale of the children of Hurin by Tolkien, where we see the devastating consequences of such relationship fulfilled (with Glaurung the golden wyrm playing the role of Chtaeh by poisoning the minds of Turin and his sister with his spin on truth come to think of it); or Stone's Fall by Iain Pears where we see what happens when it doesn't get fulfilled despite the "slow circles". Feel free to punish me for posting such an apocriphal theory, but I had to put it out there... As for the alternatives Devi, Auri and Fela all come to mind, each of them plausible with potential twists (Devi: money, power, breaking into Archives)(Auri: finding out who she is)(Fela: betrayal of Sim, killing the king).

2. Denna in the story is not the same Denna that Kvothe met on his road to Imre. Now that most people accepted the possibility of Kvothe not being himself in Tarbean and being awoken by Skarpi, I got to thinking that (and this would fit very well with the general parallelism between Denna's and Kvothe's stories) Kvothe ran into Denna while she was still in the Tarbean-Kvothe like state and that it was he who woke her up by saying the seven words. Not only would this explain his long intro of her after we actually met her, but her comments about Denna as someone she left behind. It also fits with his "unintentional namer" modus operandi sprinkled throughout the books. But this also makes sense on a deeper emotional level. Kvothe's thickness and self-centeredness makes him unable to see the world through Denna's eyes, but to me Denna's feelings for him stem from this moment of awakening. He literally saved her as a person back then (slightly hinted at when he saves her life later on in, yet again, Tarbean) and to her he is most likely someone she holds on a pedestal. This she pretty much hints at throughout, but it's a different kind of pedestal than what he's putting her on. It's one of deep gratitude, therefore her bitter disapointment in him when he reacts poorly to her song about Lanre (another instance of her (re)birth which she thought she could share with him), and especially when he shares a hint of his vision for the two of them with her by the end of the second book. This just reminds her of how ordinary and like other men he is, shattering this "savior" persona that she cultivated about him. I'm wondering if the two of them therefore end up doing something catastrophic by attempting to achieve the desired outcome from the other one. I have in mind Denna falling ill (denner addiction for example) and sending her savior to "get her a leaf from a tree at the other side of the world" he promisses this at their first Eolian meeting), which could be the flower from Chtaeh tree; and him rushing to do it to win her for himself. Can't imagine what kind of stuff Chtaeh may impart on him chanelling Glaurung (She is your sister, and the fruit growing in her womb will bring the end of the world...). I just couldn't resist connecting 1. and 2. at the end, sorry!

Unrelated Denna thought at the end: I think her "real" name is Dianne. Re-reading the meeting in Eolian I noticed how much effort was put in their back and forth regarding names, and the whole scene when Kvothe tells her his name, followed by her saying Dianne to him struck me as very sincere to be just something she made up. If she did make it up it would lower my opinion on her substantially, and it would just not fit that scene right. But then again, their two characters have many parallels and I have to assume she's commiting folly as much as he does.
Kate Hunter
352. KateH
@Bigvik #351
I've never known what to make of K's big hoopla about introducing The Woman either. As you say, D has already been introduced, and for me the idea that Denna isn't Denna just doesn't wash. I agree that the discription of The Woman who startles easily immediately summons Auri to mind, and definitely not D or Devi. I've also always thought it significant that PR never gives us K & Auri's introduction to one another. We have no idea of the details on how they became acquainted. Based on books 1 & 2 Auri doesn't seem like she could be The Woman. But it's also clear she's more than meets the eye so far and is certainly going to be very important in D3.

So in short, I'm extremely curious to see how this is resolved, and basically I think we haven't yet been given enough clues to make this make sense.
353. Nattens_Madrigal
Hi everyone, after reading through ALL the re-readings and nearly all the comments (awesome work, really) I

failed to notice theories similar to these two.
Also, as English is not my native language, be kind with me, I'm really horrible at it, but I really lack

someone to discuss the books with.

Crazy theories ahead:

- Auri as a Namer: this theory actually came to my mind a long time ago, and I don't have the books so I

can't quote from them;

1) Back during one of the first encounters between Kvothe and Auri (possibly the first) we have Auri telling

K that she saw Elodin on the roofs, listening to the wind. She then also says (not literally) "That's a good

place to listen!"
It could very well mean that she likes the sound of it, but if Elodin himself was there, it is supposed to be

a good place for a Namer (kinda like Elodin asks Kvothe why the Bridge is a good place for a Namer);

2) Auri Names Kvothe. I can't remember when exactly (probably after one of the various encounters while he is

wounded) she actually says to Kvothe "Kvothe, you are a disaster!" and he answers "Yes, I really am". We know

that Kote means disaster, that does not seem like a coincidence.
I believe that Auri was once another person (Ariel?) that tried to change her name and failed at doing it.

She was then left without a Name, possibly losing her abilities (Magical Naming). So that's why Kvothe

doesn't become Kote right away, she isn't Magically Naming him, however she might still have her naming (not

magic) skills.

3) She recognize Auri as a very good and fitting name for her. While this could mean she simply LIKED it, it

could also be a reference to the fact that she KNOWS her old name, and Auri resembled it very much (Ariel,


4) Elodin might know that Auri was a Namer (one of his students that he failed to retrieve after the Sleeping

Mind was awakened? Or a family member?) and respects her opinion; he accepts Kvothe in his class right after

Auri says he has Named her and that she finds the Name fitting.

- Elodin as Taborlin: I do not have any solid proof for this one sadly, apart from the fact that Elodin was a

genius (far more than Kvothe it would seem. Kvothe is around 18 at the end of WMF, and he is Re'lar. Elodin

was a full Arcanist and he became Chancellor a few years later, IIRC) but then something happened and he went


I believe that Taborlin the Great at the age of 14 was a very smart boy. We have seen Kvothe' stories around

the world, about how he called the fire and lightning from the sky, yet Kvothe is only 15-16 when these

stories start to be around.
So Taborlin might have done something really close to Kvothe's legend-building. He probably was just a smart

and gifted boy that masked many of his own tales and made them a lot bigger than they really were. I believe

Taborlin went into the Fae at some point in his life, hiding like Kvothe (at the Waystone) or possibly by

mistake (stepping in during a moonless night) and was forced to stay there for a long time. He then learned

Naming, or just practiced it so much that he Mastered it.

He then got out and realized that many (many, hundreds possibly) years had passed since he entered Fae, and

stories about him had grown to Legends. He heard rumors of an University and headed there, but he couldn't

give the Masters the name "Taborlin the Great", so he gave them a false Name, Elodin.
He was a seemingly young boy with hundreds of years of experience on his shoulders, so he obviously ranked up

very quickly as everyone knows.
However, I think that at one point something happened (some old enemy, or anything really) that forced him to

Name himself Elodin, not just pretending to be Elodin, but really Naming himself. He was a Master Namer, so

he didn't end up like Auri, however we don't know what are the implications of Naming a living person, or

maybe "Elodin" was just half-fitting, so he went mad (this is why he gets locked up in the Rookery, and how

he escapes. He faced a similar situation long ago, we know from the legend that I think Marten or Dedan is

telling during the Eld arc) but he didn't lose his Naming magic.

This would also explain why he freaks out so damn hard when Kvothe asks him about a person that changes his


Sorry if this has been mentioned or looks stupid, I had it in my head since the first time I read the books

(especially Auri's one) and wanted to share.
Again, absolutely awesome re-read.
354. Nattens_Madrigal
(Sorry for the double post, but I wanted to apologize for the strange output. I didn't put all those spaces, I wrote the text normally, I don't know why it came out like that)
355. BigVik
If I can't exactly provide any answers, then at least I try to ask questions that seem relevant yet understudied on this forum. Here are a few more after some really slow re-reading:
1. Hemme the Adventurer: Why does Hemme need a gram? After the class where Kvothe forms a sympathetic link with Hemme, Brandeur admonishes Hemme for not wearing a gram. The way he says it sounds so matter of fact as if Hemme hasn't put on his clothes that morning and strolled into the class naked. Now, one obvious purpose of this is to introduce us to the concept of gram early on so we accept it later on when Kvothe has to make one. But think about this -- why does Hemme need a gram in the first place? Unlike some other Masters Hemme teaches an entirely theoretical course, or so we're led to believe, it's not like first termers are going to go all Voldemort on him or something. Also, it's never mentioned that he travels anywhere, especially anywhere dangerous. Yet he not only has a gram but is expected to wear it at all times. Why is this? One explanation that comes to mind is that there's more to University than we know and that Masters serve as soldiers on some kind of guardian duty, even deplorable Hemme. I don't know, maybe I'm reading too much into it.
2. Selitos and what army: One of the things that always bothered me about Scarpi's story is it's ending. Let's review: Lanre/Haliax comes and single-handedly bests Selitos. An army comes and torches Myr Tariniel. Then Selitos names and casts him out. So, what happened to Lanre's army? They just dispersed? And who were they to begin with? Maybe some of his Chandrian were among them, but army is not half a dozen people; army is an army which means a lot of people. Why didn't they just resume what they have begun, I can hardly believe that an army that torched seven cities would be all of a sudden turning squeamish at the sight of slightly darkened Haliax. Any thought on this? As an aside, what world does Lanre want to burn exactly? We know of at least two worlds and Aleu don't appear to be in the one most of the story takes place.
3. Who is Anker: Does anyone get the feeling that Anker may be someone similar to Kvothe? When Kvothe meets him says something to him that makes me believe he had quite a few adventures behind him before he settled to run a tavern (I've been in trouble before you were born. I've been in trouble you don't even have a name for.). And consider this: aparently it cost a lot of money to own a tavern outright (thousands of talents at least according to Kvothe) and Anker owns his outright, that's why he can't be bough out. We're led to believe he's not well off due to his demeanor and his clientele, but the fact that he owns a tavern outright tells a different story. Is there some famous hero in the story whose name could be shortened to Anker that I'm missing?
4. Ademre as an exurb of Myr Tariniel: I know this is a stretch, but something caught my eye beyond that both Myr Tariniel and Ademre are "among the mountains". Skarpi tells that the houses in Myr Tariniel were "carved from the mountain itself, from a bright stone...". In Ademre houses were described in a very similar fashion as built into the hill side, also made of stone. It's probably nothing, but still...

By the way, I'm ruminating an overarching theory that I may share one day on this or whatever thread is active at the time I put it all together.
Ryan Murray
356. TheYllest
@BigVik 355

1) I believe the gram being mentioned early on is simply foreshadowing, as you mentioned as a possibility, albeit a rather mundane one. Without this reference PR would have to go into explaining what a gram is from Kvothe's perspective later on which would be tedious and uncharacteristic of his style. It is not ridiculous to think that the Masters would wear grams given Kvothe's speculation about gilders acting as grams, and any arcanist would be remiss to go around performing arcane magics without his gilder.

2) It is mentioned in a few places that the cities fell due to betrayal (mixed story references), presumably by a well connected citizen, and only one of the cities was not betrayed. This leads me to believe that it would not take a huge force to overwhlem and destroy a city, especially if your "army" was particularly deadly (The Chandrian). I never thought on this point too much, as you have to take the flourishes in Skarpi's story with a grain of salt, but I do believe a concerted effort by The Chandrian and Haliax could take down those cities without the assistance large force, or any force for that matter. In Trapis' story, Ecanis takes out the cities by himself.

3) It does seem odd that he owns his tavern outright, but it always appeared to be a modest outfit to me. Perhaps something like that is more affordable than what Kvothe suggests, as he seems to spare no expense with The Waystone, whereas Anker could cut a few corners with his costs as can be seen by his "from the pot" mentality to food service. I like the idea of famous or mythological characters hiding in plain sight for Kvothe to find, but I can't think of who Anker might be.

4) Myr Tariniel is described as being as large as Tarbean and having towers, spires, and fountains. Now, MT was destroyed thousands of years ago and could have eroded to the point that Ademre appears in the present, but if I recall, the Adem moved into Ademre around the same time that the fall of MT occured. Perhaps they took the empty city as an opportunity; perhaps they are the remnants of the army you mentioned above, but there are lots of mountains and I would need more than a three word description to convince me. Like you said, its a long shot, but an interesting one.

I must be in an argumentative mood because reading back through, I realized I disagreed on all points. Consider my thought's as more discussion points than refutations.
Ryan Murray
357. TheYllest
Anyone see anything interesting in the correlation of the Adem phrase "Sceopa teyas" (translates to 'I'm not speaking') and the beggar in Kvothe's story to Wil and Sim, Sceop? If Sceopa is a conjugated form of Sceop, meaning to speak, I think this could have some interesting implications which I have yet to figure out. When Sceop tells his story to the troup of Edema Ruh who show him hospitality in Fariniel, they are entranced and seem to wake from a "deep sleep" when he is finished, similar to the response Kvothe got on the caravan to Imre after playing the lute for the first time in years. I believe Sceop is a namer, perhaps a famous one who's name has been obfuscated by time and retellings. Ironic, considering Wil and Sim's reaction to Kvothe's story where they expected the beggar to be someone significant; perhaps he was. This also shows a connection which has been talked about here before between the Edema and the Adem (Sceopa treyas).
Sorry for the random rambling about most likely insignificant language. Just thought I'd bring up the similarity.
358. FalconGK81
@355: As to point 3, I think it's definitely worth keeping in mind. Anker unquestionably owns the inn, something we know is not cheap (even if it's not as impressive as the waystone). And Anker's "I know trouble" stuff is defnitely written like good foreshadowing. It's innocuous enough to not draw too much attention to itself, but it's striking enough to suggest there is more than meets the eye.

@357: I'm pretty sure Sceop is Skarpi. I like your observation that the Edema in the story seem to wake from a deep sleep after he tells his story. This is a recurring theme that is clearly important to the story.
John Graham
359. JohnPoint
BigVik @355 --

Hmm. I'm going to echo both TheYllist @355 and Falcon @ 358. I don't see anything compelling in 1, 2, or 4. All three seem to fit with the story more or less as explained: a gram is typical protection an arcanist will wear, particularly when surrounded by hundereds/thousands of inexperienced novices; Lanre may have had an army or just a few people, perhaps they left following the sacking of Myr Tariniel, or perhaps the "army details" are allegorical; and Ademre as exurban Myr Tariniel seems, well, unlikely given the logistics and Ademic origin stories.

As to #3 -- it's an interesting possibility that could turn out to be true, but I don't see any requirement for Anker to be anything other than what he appears. Yes, a tavern costs a lot to buy, but that doesn't necessarily mean one has to be "cash-rich" to own one. Yes, the tavern itself is worth a lot, but all of his financial capital could easily be tied up in the tavern, alcohol, food, equipment, etc. Where did he get it? There are quite a few mundane, possibilities there. Perhaps he inhereted it from his father. Perhaps he used to be a merchant and earned enough to buy the tavern. Perhaps he built it himself, slowly, over the years. Perhaps he won it playing "corners" in the 4C championship tournament. Perhaps... many perhaps. I also don't really see him as particularly "not well off" but rather as a small busines owner who operates his own place. He's not sleeping on a bed of silver talents and doesn't want to unnecessarily spend money, but he's able to support himself and have an employee or two.

TheYllist @357 and Falcon@358 -- yes, it seems potential/likely to me. Particularly given the Scoep/Skarpi connection.
360. Vorbis
I've been wondering about the scene in book two where Nina comes to town to tell Kvothe what she saw on the clay pot. It struck me that given the adventure with pirates wasn't significant enough to tell, we learn remarkably little new information. The same details about the Chandrian we already knew.

We learn three things; one, that Kvothes amulet worked to some degree in spite of its apparent lack of function. Nina had nightmares until she put it under her pillow, after which she had a true dream three days consecutive. Which suggests that

Two, either Kvothes willing her desperately to remember as much as he could was transferred to the amulet, or some Angel as Nina believes is able to communicate in dreams and considers the Chandrian worth that intervention.

Three, and most significant we learn there was an Amyr on the jar. This shows that the Amyr was around before the Church began. And that they condemn and are directly connected to the Chandrian.

The Chandrian, what's their plan. They don't kill over telling of their signs or all kids singing songs would be dead. That is all the pot shows of them, not true names or Nina would have drawn them even not knowing the language. It is the linking of them to the Amyr that they are trying to destroy.

Assuming I'm speculating right there, what does the Chandrian gain by eradicating that connection? Are they the ones wiping reference of the Amyr and not the Amyr hiding themselves like I assumed? To weaken recruitment for an enemy, make them myth and forgotten? Or is it more direct, that the Amyr can hear you say their name like footsteps across their graves the was the Chandrian do and if you know they can face down the seven you call them and they come. That knowledge would be worth destroying towns over.
Carl Banks
361. robocarp
Lots of posts to respond to....


I've been of the opinion that the Woman is Auri and no one else for some time, and is the person who called him "Dulator" (because she liked the sound of it, which is something Auri would do).


I doubt there is much controversy that Auri is a former attendee of the University who went a little batty in the head. The details are the interesting part. I want to relate this to the Yllest's theory (post 98) on how the university ranks might correspond to things you can do with names: Listening (E'lir), Speaking (Re'lar), Shaping (El'the), and Changing (?). You are saying that Auri achieved that fourth rank. I think it's as good a theory as any given the evidence you posted. Maybe part of the reason she cracked and regressed into a child-like state was she couldn't handle the burden of so much power.

As for Elodin = Taborlin, I don't buy it but it's the best explanation I've seen for it yet.


I guess I have to go with the crowd and disagree on all four points.

I doubt Kvothe was the first person to attempt malefeance on a Master (intenionally or no) so the Masters probably wear them often. Hemme was not wearing a gram simply because it was first year students who he didn't believe were capable of malefeance.

Lanre's army was probably just the enemy's army. The Creation War didn't actually end at Drossen Tor, you'll notice. Even though "the enemy", whoever that is, was set behind stone doors afterwards, there was still fighting to be done, and this is explicit in Skarpi's story. So when Lanre betrayed Myr Tariniel, the simplest explanation is he betrayed it to what was left of the enemy. As to what happened after that, who knows? We don't know much about anything that happened after Myr Tariniel fell. I have my theory (the army occupied the six other cities that fell, and continued fighting the Creation War under Chandrian rule against the surviving city until something happened to end it), other people have theories (A Fox thinks they became the Adem), but it's all guesswork.

If the Horse and Four is like the Hilton, Anker's is like the run down motel on the highway with only two neon lights still working. Someone who does good business could certainly come to own a place like that.

The main objection I have to Ademre being built on the ruins of MT (besides the fact that Ademre is a country and MT is a city) is that Ademre is a cold hostile environment and MT was an idyllic mountain town. Also, I tend to put MT at the end of the Great Stone Road.

The Yllest@356

The Adem arrived in Ademre well after the fall of Myr Tariniel. The two main clues: Shehyn says the people who lived in the Empire were what the Adem were before they were Adem. Then she says seven names were remembered through (among other things) the long wandering of the Adem. Thus the long wandering must have happened after the Betrayal.

My gut feeling is that Ademre was settled no less than 1000 years BK, after the first Adem school was founded. The Aethe and Rethe story seems to have taken place during the Adem's nomadic phase, when they valued shepherding skills and there was actually a highest hill in the vicinity. Thanks to the schools, the Adem were able to regain the fighting skills of their Creation War ancestors, and by selling mercenary skills didn't have to live off the land any more, so they relocated to present-day Ademre.
Roger Pavelle
362. RogerPavelle

I think there are a couple significant things we learn from Nina's story.

1) We have it confirmed that the Chandrian can be linked with the Amyr, which had only been mentioned previously in Skarpi's story. This goes directly to their origin, which they don't want known (hence the death of Kvothe's family).

2) It is very interesting from a story perspective that the Amyr on the pot is the scariest figure. This could lend some credence to Denna's song about Lanre being the one betrayed. It also is a sign that Kvothe is pursuing a very dangerous course by looking for them.

3) Nina is visited by an angel. Angels have been mentioned several times in the story - Kvothe is said to have killed one, Skarpi's second story tells their origin as a faction outside both the Amyr and Chandrian with their own agenda. While I don't remember any mind-to-mind types of magic being mentioned before, there is no reason NOT to believe she is telling the actual truth about the visit.

Rookie Tabin
363. rookie1
Hello, first time poster here. I discovered this re-read about a month ago, and have obsessively worked through the summaries and comments ever since, much to the detriment of my work. Kudos to Jo and the regular commentors on their insight!

Apologies if this has been discussed before in more detail, but I recall the three over-riding philosophies/paths in the book were summarised a short while ago in this re-read, to be 1) Bredon's beautiful game, 2) the Adem's lethani and 3)the Amyr's strife for right? I'd like to add to that idea further by referrring back to what Kilvin said to Kvothe at one point in Chapter 44 " The Catch" in WMF. I'm paraphrasing here but he essentially he said there are three ways to do a thing, 1)you can do a bad thing in a bad way, which to me sounds like the Chandrian, who to me sound like drivers of anarchy. Alternatively there is 2) where you do a good thing in a bad way, which sounds a little like the utalitarianism of the Amyr, and finally there is the Adem's and note Kilvin's; do a good thing in a good way. It seems to me that Kvothe through the series has oscillated between the three philosophies, identified more closely with some over others, i.e. the second philosophy is what comes easiest to him, he has been trained in the third by the Adem, and the CTH may well lead him towards the first, as it has with others before him (Iax, Haliax and possible the rest of the Chandrian). I think D3 will see him pick the wrong path, and the tragic nature of the story will be due to him realising what made it wrong and how he might have picked the right.

Also I found it interesting that Kilvin's way of thinking behind the Bloodless matches somewhat with the thinking of the Adem, Elodin is the only master to have a link drawn with the Adem in plainsight by PR but could it be that Kilvin, like Elodin and Kvothe, has also trained in the Lethani, possible by a different school other than the one of Shehyn leads?

And finally Bredon, if one was to pick a philosophy/path out to slot him into, the closest to me at least would be the first; 'to do a bad thing is a bad way'. There is something sinister about playing with people for amusement *shudder*
Carl Banks
364. robocarp

Kvothe takes the scary person in Nina's drawing to be an Amyr, but other people have had other theories, some of them reasonable. (I've seen Andan, Lyra, Tehlu, Taborlin the Great, and an Eighth Chandrian--who may or may not be one of the other four.) So I'd say it's importance is merely to confirm Amyr-Chandrian connection in Kvothe's mind; it's inconclusive evidence for us.
365. Marco.
Does anyone have any theories about the "round object" that Nina colored metallic bronze that was obscuring the hand of mystery figure #8 on the pottery?

Kvothe guesses shield, so we I think we can safely discard that.

The color, and the signifigance of copper elsewhere in the book makes me suspect that it's made of copper.

My vote? It's what's in the Loeclos box.
366. Nattens_Madrigal
@361 robocarp:

I know that Auri as a former University student is a famous theory, I just felt puzzled when I saw that clear Naming attempt right there.
And also, re-reading right now, Bast says the exact same thing when he's fixing Kvothe's injuries (from the soldiers) "Reshi, you're a disaster".
One would think that Bast, as his student, would know what "Kote" meant, and we also know that Bast is actually trying really hard "transform" him back to Kvothe, so it's a weird coincidence.

As for Taborlin = Elodin, I know, it's very unlikely and I don't buy it either, but I just refuse to think that Elodin is just some random gifted dude who happens to be a genius and become Chancellor at around 18.
(Also, how does one become Chancellor exactly? Look at when Herma gets ill, they choose a Master, not some random -although very good- student.
Was Elodin the Master Namer already? That young? He can't be a normal guy.
367. FalconGK81
@366: I suspect that Master Namer is a position that is not always held. And that when it is held, the holder is the Chancellor. When Elodin demonstrated his mastery of naming, he was made Master Namer, which also made him Chancellor by tradition. And at some point he (or they collectively) realized that he wasn't suited for chancellor, and he stepped down from that position. We've already seen that abiity at naming can cause members of the arcanum to jump ranks very quickly.
Kate Hunter
368. KateH
@FalconGK81 #367
That makes total sense to me. Good points and good deduction/guesswork.
Adam S.
369. MDNY
@367,368 I'm not so sure that Master Namer=Chancellor. I read them as 2 different positions. I think the chancellor is always one of the University's masters, and somehow Elodin became chancellor (maybe they had wanted to go for a younger man for some reason). When the time comes for a new chancellor, it doesn't seem that whoever becomes chancellor will be master namer. Elodin can continue as the Master Namer even if someone else (like Hemme) became chancellor.
370. FalconGK81
@MDNY: I'm not saying that Master Namer = Chancellor, they are obviously different positions. What I'm proposing is that there is some sort of tradition from the long ago days when naming was much more important at the university whereby the Master Namer is made the Chancellor as well. And they did that in this case when Elodin was raised to Master Namer (an office that isn't always filled), but then either Elodin or a mutual number of them agreed he wasn't right for that position, so they passed it on.

There are some passages from the story that support my interpretation of it, but I don't have the opporunity at the moment to dig it up. I will ASAP to explain more thoroughly why I first started thinking this was so.
371. Nattens_Madrigal
@370: I agree that they don't always have a Master Namer at the University, but it seems odd that they chose such a young man.
Then again, Masters aren't that powerful, look at what Devi *supposedly* did to get expelled, so they had Elodin since he's probably the best among them.
Still, something happened to Elodin since he got imprisoned in the Rookery, and when he talks about the Old University it almost looks like he WAS there. I don't know, just a feeling, and pure speculation.
372. La_Niña
I've been a subscriber to the Denna as the Moon theory since coming across this blog, and had that playing in the back of my mind while re-reading the books. I can't find where, but I think there was a comment here that Denna is never with Kvothe when the moon is not in Fae - last night I realised in NotW when D comes to Anker's to get Kvothe to walk her home (which takes several hours), there are a few references to moonlight washing over them.

Have I got this backward or is this a count against the Denna as the Moon theory? If she is in the sky in this realm, she can hardly be frolicking with Kvothe, right?
Kate Hunter
373. KateH
@La Nina, #372, I don't have my notes from my re-reads in front of me, but I'm pretty sure there are numerous times when K is with D and the moon is mentioned. Personally, I've always viewed the D=moon theory as bunkum. I'm persuaded that D is a mundane young woman with a difficult but ordinary back story. I don't think she's supernatural, royal, Fae, K's sister, mother or aunt, the (re-)incarnation of someone or something, or whatever.

But I could be wrong and I'm totally open to re-hashing the evidence.
Adam S.
374. MDNY
I can't say for certain whether D has anything supernatural about her, but I love how she is clearly linked to the moon. Even her name is evocative of the moon (Diana=Roman moon goddess). Ignoring the fact that this is a work of fantasy, I think it is clear that she is linked to the moon in a literary/metaphoric way.
Steven Halter
375. stevenhalter
We've seen D with and without the moon. Moon spotting with D gets mentioned through the threads. But, the moon is often mentioned when D is around. If someone really wants to perform a service, it would be interesting to correlate mentions (and phases if available) of the moon with the charaters that are around at the point of the mentions.
Steven Halter
376. stevenhalter
All of this reading and discussion seems to have been useful in honing my Rothfi spotting abilities as I was able to correctly pick out the real PR twitter account (@PatrickRothfuss). He only got 15.33% (second though) of the vote as compared to Mary Robinette Kowal with 42%. Full results over at his blog:
That and he complained about hash tags #tags being called hash rather than pound tags and I replied that outside of North America the symbol is called hash and the corresponding telephone key is called the "hash key". # is hash rather than pound outside of North America as the pound symbol (£ or ?) is rather already taken. He liked that.
This seemed like a Rothfian exchange to me.
377. Blue Elodin
I posted this first on the "Creation War"-thread, then realised I should have posted it here. So: Please excuse the double post (and a repetition, if this has been brought up before).

If Denna is in some kind associated with the wind, that might also explain the similarity betweeen the names "Elodin" and "Dinael". Disregarding the "a/o" difference which might be indicative of gender, both names seem to be made up by the roots "El" and "Din". So Elodin could mean "He who listens to the wind", while Dinael perhaps means "She who is heard by the wind" (if the reversed order means something). This would also fit well with the "El'the" = "Listener" hypothesis. (And what does Alaxel listen to? Some kind of power? The "Al" in "Alar" and "Aleph" might mean "power")

Or perhaps "el" at the end of a word indicates shaping (as in Alaxel), while it indicates naming if used at its beginning. In this case, Dinael would be "She who shapes the wind".
378. Blue Elodin
Afterthought: Of course, remembering that "Ludis" is the name of the moon, the root "din" might also be connected to that name. I which case "Elodin" = "He who listens to the moon", "Dinael" = "She who is heard by the moon/who shapes th moon". If one thinks of the influence of Denna`s song, a name that means "who is heard by somebody" would fit quite well, I think.
379. Blue Elodin
Just one more thing that crossed my mind: If Kvothe is "the son who brings the blood", it seems ironic that he is called "the Blood-less." The Lack-less who is the Blood-less would then bring the blood. Intentional?

It does seem to me that the name might have a deeper significance with regard to the Lackless riddle. Perhaps because he gives the blood (in the process of opening the Lackless door?), he will then be (really, in the deeper sense) the Bloodless.
380. Blue Elodin
Pardon for the multiple posts. But I wanted to share/ask one mor thing: Did someone make the connection between

1) Meluan Lackless
2) Melosi retu edan stiti ( sleep at the fire).
3) Then comes that which comes with sleeping.

It seems that the root "Mel" might mean "to sleep". So perhaps "Meluan" means "Sleeper" or "Dreamer"? And might she, as "the Dreamer", be "that which comes with sleeping"? Or, if her name means "sleeper/sleeping" might something that comes with her be "that which comes with sleeping"?
381. Blue Elodin
Regarding Lanre and his plan: Doesn't he say in his conversation with Selitos: "This world is like a wounded friend" or something like that?

Now, we know that ever since the creation of Fae there have been two worlds. So, if the emphasis on Lanre's statement is on "this", might that not mean that he doesn't want to annihilate all of creation, only this world (as opposed to both worlds)?
Ryan Murray
382. TheYllest
@381 Blue Elodin

I have recently thought back on a theory I proposed back earlier in this thread, @98, which is similar to what you suggest here, and I have some slight revisions which make more sense to me and expand upon this idea.
I believe the Haliax's plan is to destroy the 4C World, and leave the Fae intact. His motivation has to do with the fact that unlike most, I believe the Cthaeh is a manifestation of Iax/Jax/moon stealing shaper, and the Cthaeh has made some sort of deal to bring back Lyra or remove his curse, if Lanre can destroy 4C world giving him the one thing he desires most, the moon. If there is no 4C, then the moon can only exist in the Fae sky, where Iax can be with her forever as he suggests in the campfire story told by Hespe.
As he is sealed behind the doors of stone and currently has no insteraction with the mortal world, he needs others to do his bidding and bring the moon to him. Given his naming/shaping prowess, I have no doubt he has the abilities to do this.

Disclaimer: This is only a theory. I understand the lack of evidence, and I'm not trying to prove anything. This is just how I think this story shakes out, as we don't have sufficient evidence for any comprehensive theory, really.
Ryan Murray
383. TheYllest
@380 Blue Elodin

I doubt Meluan's name has anything to do with the random Siaru word Melosi which may or may not mean 'to sleep', but it is worth noting that Melatonin shares the root 'Mel' and is thought by many to aid sleep. Maybe this isn't as out there as I thought, or maybe I'm reaching.
thistle pong
384. thistlepong

Meluan also means something like, "I'm noisy," in Finnish. Several of the names are breath/wind related. I kinda think y'all are trying to force a "mel" root from inside or outside the text which isn't necessary. She's already connected to the rhymes by virtue of being tge Lackkess heir.
385. Blue Elodin
Thus has probably been brought up before. But I haven't seen it yet, so it might be worth noting: In "Feltemi Reis" the historian's first name seems to mean (and even map linguistically) "philologist" (the root "fel" meaning "desire" as in Fela and Feluraian, "temi" being conncted to "Tema"=language). As this is exactly what philologist means (lover of words) it's fitting name for him :-)

A somewhat wilder speculation: If in "Reis" the "re" has something to do with the rune for finding, his surname might mean "investigator/finder of facts". Just as fitting for a great historian :-)
386. Blue Elodin
@ 384

You're absolutely right, of course,that it's not necessary for Meluan's general association with the rhyme. But it seems interesting with regard to a possible specific connection to the line.
Kate Hunter
387. KateH
I doubt the Meluan/Siaru/sleep/wind connections too. I realize that PR has put a prodigous amount of thought into his work, and 4C is a very dense world. But collectively all the folks participating on these obsessive re-read posts have likely put in more thought on the texts than even PR himself has ever done. We're coming up with stuff that stretches to fill the gaps and makes sense of things that don't yet make sense. I include myself and my own theories in this categorization. PR has said something (somewhere, sorry for the lack of reference) to the effect of not every last loose thread is going to be tied up neatly in the third book. Because that would be too much like a tidy story and too little like real life. I take that to mean that a certain amount of stuff (possibly a whole lot) in his books just IS - without any explanation, logic, or reason behind it.
388. Bue Elodin
One final speculation on Meluan: If "Meluan" = "Sleeper", she would be "The Sleeper lackless". And what is a sleeper who lacks nothing? A dreamer? Seems somewhat interesting to me with regard to (a) a possible connection between the Lackless rhyme and the Chandrian and (b) Lanre's inability to sleep or dream.
389. Blue Elodin
@ 387
Agreed. I'm just wondering whether the names of important characters fall under the category of things that just "are". At least, many callling names in the books certainly do mean something. Even the rector's first name "Herma" seems to be an expression of what he is - a linguist - since it seems to be taken from the Greek "hermeneuein" (to translate).
390. Blue Elodin
Just like many other calling names that I am sure have already been noted. Such as the connection of Ilien to Homer's "Ilias" (Homer's role clearly being analogous to Ilien': the first, greatest and most influential poet).

But again, I don't deny the danger of reading to much into the books.
391. Soham
Sorry if I run off in a tangent, but there was something I found greatly disturbing in terms of making sense,
The Adem concept of birth. The Adem believe that women ripen on their own and give birth without the involvement of men; but seriously, that, mixed with their social custom of free sex, is a recipe for population explosion. I don’t see how the women would be better at the Ketan than men, if they spend 9 months a year under conception, unless there’s some kind of natural contraceptive in their diet.

Any explanations?
thistle pong
392. thistlepong

Getting punched and kicked a lot or just performing strenuous exercise daily is a natural contraceptive.


A wizard did it.
thistle pong
393. thistlepong
Blue Elodin@389
Agreed. I'm just wondering whether the names of important characters fall under the category of things that just "are". At least, many callling names in the books certainly do mean something. Even the rector's first name "Herma" seems to be an expression of what he is - a linguist - since it seems to be taken from the Greek "hermeneuein" (to translate).
I think there's a difference between names (Herma, Illien, Eolian, Ruach, whatev) meaning something those meanings being necessary keys to the text. So, like, it's clever that Master Linguist's name derives from a word having to do with translation. That sort of thing sends roots into literary history and winks at the audience a little. But it doesn't give you additional information about the plot.

I think the various arguments about what "rhin" means are in the same vein. Holistically, they suggest a root language for the Four Corners and a connection to Faen. They ground the Seven deep in history and reify what we already know: that they've been around a long time. Whether it means "knowledge" or "shape" is interesting, but probably not essential. It's also one of the things that might not be explicit at the story's end.

I actually think that might be where part of my resistance to Melosi/Meluan. Rhin shows up, deliberaately, all over the place. Contrast that with Lady Lackless. Is her name Vintic, Aturan, or Siaru? If it's Siaru, why? The connection seems generate confusion rather than understanding. I mean, why not suggest a connection with fire-haired Losi? So, it's a catch for sure, but one I think we should throw back for now.

This isn't to say I haven't just thrown ideas out there to see what happens. As I came to understand alchemy a little better I proposed an interpretation of "Haliax" that's quite unlikely while still coming to the same conclusion that folks have been asserting since 2007.

I respect and appreciate what you're doing. Please don't stop just 'cause I, or anyone else, disagreed with one tiny bit of it.
Kate Hunter
394. KateH
I respect and appreciate what you're doing. Please don't stop just 'cause I, or anyone else, disagreed with one tiny bit of it.
And apologies if I ever gave a different impression.
395. Blue Elodin

I'm almost completely with you concerning the relevance/irrelevance of individual names for the plot. I think, a difference might be that I would tend to say: The names do not give us any direct clues to the plot, but on the other hand there seems to be a tendency for people to have (calling) names that match what they are and therefore - to a certain degree - do within the plot.

As for "Why not suggest a connection with fire-haired Losi?": I inferred from Kvothe's question "Edan stiti? You sleep at the fire?" that the Siaru word for fire is in this part Kvothe repeats from what Wilem said. Might be wrong, of course.
Jason Hudson
397. Pykus
@391 I've been cautiously accepting their story as true. If they are the descendants of Faelings all bets are off as far as I can tell. Perhaps too much time in the mortal world made them something close to human. The fact that the menstural cycle was mentioned as "when the moon is upon her" tells me that the Adem, if not everyone, mensturate in sync with the lengthened calendar. The synodic period of the moon was given by Kvothe as 72 days if I recall, so it would seem they're less than half as likely to become pregnant than one might otherwise expect even if they are fully human and currently sexually active.
Jason Hudson
398. Pykus
I've been pondering the relationships between the different types of magic. It seems to me that there is Naming sitting at the heart of everything. The Deep Knowers Felurian spoke of knew the essence of a thing. A Namer can use that knowledge to control that thing as it is. A Shaper can use that knowledge to change its essence. In the time before the war there is no mention we have heard of other magics, either because we simply have not heard of them, we hanve not heard of them because they were not considered important enough at the time to have mentioned, or because they did not yet exist.

If we fast forward to the great war and all that changed at that time, people started to lose the ability with naming that they once had. If I were a namer alive at that time, I could see two good reasons for creating other kinds of magics: Prior to the war it might have been a kindness to those who could not learn naming, a means of bettering life for all, or perhaps as a method used for learning naming that was useful in itself. After the war, if no reason yet existed, we would have needed a way of preserving the knowledge of magic as well, even if naming was lost forever.

I think the runes would have needed to be created by someone who knew the essence of a thing well enough to give it physical form. If speech can represent a thing well enough for Naming, why couldn't a rune represent that speech enough to contain some element of its power? Who else but a namer could have understood the nature of things enough to create the first alchemy? Sympathy seems the most Naming-like of them all, but a weaker brute-force-of-will version of the elegant Naming... like teaching a parrot to talk, a student wouldn't need to understand the meaning of the sounds in order to use them.

It seems that the names of all things are in flux, some more than others, but there are likely consistencies, and its the consistencies that I think were exploited to create these other magics.

Even Felourian's magics seem related, though perhaps the right-brain version of the left brain magics in the mortal world. The two worlds themselves seem related in that kind of way. Grammery especially seems like a clear link, like what one might get if one wasn't a namer but at least knew something like the grammar of naming.

I'm not sure what the significance of this might be yet, but its been interesting to ponder.
399. Blue ELodin
I've been thining about the "Al" root again that might well mean "powerful" (as in Alar, Aleph, Alveron). Just a speculation that occured to me: Alar seems to mean "powerful thinking". Now, if "Alar" derives from an original "Al-lar" and "lar" is the element that means " thinking", then perhaps "Re-lar" means "He who finds the (expression of the) thought/finds the concept". I infer "finds" for "Re" from the rune "Re". It would fit with the description of getting to know a true name ("finding" the name of something).
Ryan Murray
400. TheYllest
Blue Elodin@399

You seem very adept at connecting what I just considered PR's ticks in creating words and names, and perhaps finding deeper meaning behind them. Any thoughts on Den? Denna, denner-resin, dennerling, Denn (Threpe), Shuden/Theden/Orden, denna-leyan. It seems to come up frequently, similar to Al. Speaking of 'Al', here's some other pretty obvious ones, any thoughts?:

-Pale Alenta brings the blight.
-Alaxel bears the shadow’s hame.
-The Prince Regent Alaitis had been killed in a duel
401. Marco.
D3 update - I saw a talk Rothfuss gave yesterday. The topic of D3 came up and he responded (paraphrased):

Did any of you read Gaiman's Ocean at the End of the Lane? Did you read the author's note? Did you notice the date? Go back and look. It's more than a year before it was published. And his book, if it was 80,000 words, I'll eat it.

My book is 300,000 words and that means that there's even more that needs to happen. This means that even if I were some how magically able to finish the book right now, during this show, that you wouldn't get it next year. And I'm sorry.
thistle pong
402. thistlepong
Thanks, Marco.

A poster elsewhere was also there:[quote][color=rgb(24, 24, 24); font-family: Georgia, Times, 'Times New Roman', serif; font-size: 13.63636302947998px; line-height: 17.99715805053711px">For everyone who is hoping that Doors of Stone is coming out in 2014, I am going to be a bubble buster. I was just at a reading Pat did last night in Chicago. He's unsure that DoS will come out in 2014 because he isn't done writing it yet. And he mentioned the publishing timeline is about a year and a half long. Although, he did mention he has a novel about Lanier [[i]sic] that's close to being done that he might publish before book 3.
Kate Hunter
403. KateH
Oh, man....That is a real bubble buster...not the news I wanted to hear. I'm trying not to be terribly disappointed about this. I'd talked myself into this idea that if I was patient and didn't whine (much), the universe would magically reward me with D3 in 2014. Preferably early 2014.

How can the publisher take a year and a half with a finished MS?!?! I know there have been books pumped out on very short notice when some event happens and publishers think books connected to it will sell. Can we petition for fast-tracking once the MS is in?
Steven Halter
404. stevenhalter
The petition is called "New York Times Best Sellers." Since the first two books already have that status, we can be sure that D3 will get "fast tracked" when the publisher gets it.
The real problem is what it means for the publisher to "get it" and what stage it is in now.
For example, "A Dance With Dragons," went through the pipeline pretty quickly from when I recall GRRM declared it was done, but I think large portions had already been at the publisher for quite some time. So, it wasn't really a case of delivering a brand new pile of 100's of K words. It was an increment that they could consume.
So, is D3 in a state like that or is it in a pretty fluid state of change where really very little finished manuscript is available? We don't really (as far as I know) have any insight as to that except that from the past, we know that Pat seems to like to mess abpout with major portions of the story through the whole process.
And, that's fine. I much prefer a great book later than a so so book sooner. Or, at least a book that PR is happy with later than one he weeps tears of sadness over.
thistle pong
405. thistlepong
Tim Powers to Patrick Rothfuss: "It's important to remember that your book might be late once, but if it sucks, it sucks forever."
Gerd K
406. Kah-thurak
Yep. As long as the story is finnished in one book, and that book is good, it does not matter that much how long it takes (within reasonable limits ^^). The only drawback to slow writers is that they write fewer books in total. Rothfuss is no Sanderson or Pratchett... Fortunately he does not seem to be a Martin or Jordan either so we can be reasonably sure that his story is still tightly under his control.
John Graham
407. JohnPoint
Thanks for the updates, Marco and Thistle. I, too, am willing to wait for a product where Pat is happy with the outcome. The year and a half timeline likely includes the whole beta-read process, which could well take 6 months in and of itself. Yes, early '14 would be fantastic, but '15, '16, or even (gasp!) '17 would be ok. Much past 2017 and we may have to have a little talk about OCD....

(Edit for typo)
408. Marco.

Regarding the "other book", he talked about this at length. I don't really remeber how he organized his thoughts, so I'll summarize the points in bullets.

- This was the novella he started during NaNoWriMo
-When it hit 50,000 words, he realized it wasn't a novella anymore
-It's set in Modeg
-He thinks that with a "good month" of writing, he could finish it and put it into the production process
-He and his publisher/editor are talking about what he should do: (A)finish the Modeg novel and give people something to real while waiting for D3, or (B) countinue to slog towards D3
-Editor: "People are going to be piiiiiiissed"

Pat took a poll of the audience. People overwhelmingly voted for the Modeg novel option. (It was very clear from the way he presented the choices that it was Pat's preference too.)
Tim Moses
409. Arwyl
Pardon me for joining the conversation late; and I must confess that I have not read each comment on every thread. However, has anyone suggested that the reason Kvothe is without his music is that it is another form of magic he must suppress? In other words, he has become a "singer." It seems that he defeats Felurian through music as much as naming, or, perhaps music is another form of naming and the essence of a name can be contained in a song. Maybe, it is the way he defeats the Chandrian.
thistle pong
410. thistlepong

If he's surppressing "singing," it's probably voluntary. One of the first things we see frame-Kote doing is singing. On the other hand there's a lot of speculation about why he does not or cannot play instrumental music.
thistle pong
411. thistlepong
starquark on reddit posted:
I was at the Chicago reading! The poll wasn't much of a poll, in the sense that he made it exceptionally obvious that he wanted to do that.
On the bright side, he did say something along the lines of "I'd rather stretch it out, and give you guys a dozen amazing books over 20 years, than burn myself out finishing book three and have it not even turn out well."
This was the first I've (definitely) heard that he plans on publishing many more books, even if we don't have any scope for them.
412. FalconGK81
This D3 news saddens me greatly. But, like everyone else, we all just have to grin and bear it, nothing we do/say is going to change it, and the "I just want the best book, no matter how long it takes" line is getting tiring to me (being an ASOIAF fan as well). Yes, we all want a great book, and whether we're willing to wait or not, we're gonnna have to wait, that's just reality.
Steven Halter
413. stevenhalter
In case anyone missed it, PR has some news over on his blog:
The caption being:
Guess who’s having a baby?
John Graham
414. JohnPoint
One other comment about the wait for D3 -- right now we have the fun circumstance of being able to anticipate, speculate, theorize, extemporize, and just plain ponder everything. After D3 is released we'll know the answers to (some of) these questions for certain, but won't have as much free rein to hunt. The mystery and anticipation is a lot of the fun, eh...?

(Granted, I highly doubt that everything will be wrapped, packaged tidily and laid out for easy consumption, so we'll probably still have a lot to speculate about. That's definitely Pat's style.)
Steven Halter
415. stevenhalter
JohnPoint@414:Exactly, it's like waiting for Christmas. There is the anticipation and excitement and then finally the unwrapping! And then, it's done. Some of our theories will be proven, some disproven, some still balanced on the razors edge of delightful uncertainty and we can chat about that. But, eventually, it will be over and we'll have to put all the wrappings into the trash and carry out the tree for the squirrels to sit in.
The waiting is part of the delight.
416. Nattens_Madrigal
Oh man I hope he doesn't go beyond 2015, that would piss off many many people (including me)...

I mean, yeah, I prefer a good book over a rushed one, but if in the meantime he starts writing other things, then he won't be using his time to work on D3 :/
417. Arwyl
Perhaps you're right, Thistlepong, but Kote would hardly need to call forth his musical talent to lead a round of "Tinker, Tailor" at the inn. Maybe he had to avoid playing the lute to avoid recognition, but maybe his music is actually the way he defeated the Chandrian or whatever impossible deeds will be revealed in the next book. In any event, what I love about this series, and why it has piqued my interest unlike any fantasy series since the LOTR, is that it is constructed like a puzzle box.
418. Blue Elodin
Something that's been nagging me for while is that several times people speak of "Lanre and his Chandrian" (most notably Selitos in Skarpi's second story). Since "Chandrian" means "the Seven", that seems an odd wording, because it suggests that the group has 8 members.

I am also still confused by the numbers in Shehyn's story: the enemy (not Lanre) poisoned seven others (including Lanre?), but one remembered Lethani (why then are there still seven Chandrian?).

I am sure these things have already beeen discussed.
Could someone post a link to this discussion if it exists?
Carl Banks
419. robocarp
Blue Elodin@418

The enemy in Shehyn's story is almost certainly Alaxel. There are seven rhinta mentioned in Shehyn's poem. There are seven poisoned against the empire, but only six went through with the betrayal. Therefore, one of the seven rhinta has to be the enemy. Unless there's some strange dynamic going on, that would mean the enemy is Alaxel.

It's not absolutely certain that Alaxel is the same person as Lanre, but it would mean there are two different people who's faces are always in shadow and can't pass through the four doors.

As for "Lanre and his Chandrian", Skarpi could be counting the one who didn't betray a city among them. But it's not really something I would call a smoking gun that there is an eighth Chandrian. It's like, when the Surpremes changed their name to Diana Ross and the Supremes, did it mean Diana Ross no longer a Supreme?

Late edit: I explain this more fully in Speculative Summary 19, post 156.
420. Blue Elodin
@ 419


So you would further conclude that the enemy before and during the Creation War (who cannot have been Lanre who was fighting for the empire at that time) is not the one Shehyn is referring to? What seems strange to me, then, is this: Lanre acted as the empire`s enemy for a relatively short period of time. Shehyn, however, says that the enemy acted that way (by treachery) because he could not bring the empire down in a differen fashion. This sounds like someone who has tried for a long time to bring the empire down (and we know that the Creation War lasted for a very long time), whereas after Lanre turned into an enemy not that much time seems to have passed until the fall of Myr Tariniel (certainly much less than the duration of the Creation War).

As an aside: Has anyone made a connection between "Lannis" (the name of one of the months) and "Lanre"? What makes me think of a possible connection is the characterization of Lanre as "strong as the spring". So perhaps Lanre = Finds the spring ?
421. Blue Elodin
Or maybe "Lan-nis" means "month of life", since, judging frome the sequence of months, it seems to be a month in spring or summer. If so, then perhaps "Lanre" = "Finds Life" (which is what he does when Lyra is calling him).
thistle pong
422. thistlepong
Lannis is probably late summer. It's never been cleared up, but the broad lay of the sesaons seems to place it there. While Kvothe is allegedly heading into spring term when he first applies, the text identifies his first year is like three spring terms and a summer term.

It's all messed up is what I'm saying. The dates in NotW are a hash.
423. Blue Elodin
Regarding "Newarre": Does anyone else hear "new war" (the Creation War possibly being the old war) in that? Chronicler would then not only travel to the middle of nowhere, but to the middle of the new war (= Kvothe) as well.
John Graham
424. JohnPoint
Blue Elodin @423: That's an interesting take that I haven't noticed before. We've discussed interpretations of the name as "Nowhere" and "Anywhere" before, but I don't think anyone has postulated "New War".

The town name is a great example of Pat's love of (and adept skill at) multi-layered meaning, particularly for names...
Steven Halter
425. stevenhalter
Another pronunciation/titilation (mixed, but so is everything) would be:
new ah reh
and that would lead us to new arret or new stop (it is K's latest stop) or new arrest--interesting.
John Graham
426. JohnPoint
I've also considered "New Auri" and "New 'Arry" which could allude to either Kvothe being an Auri-like character (which makes some sense, in several ways), or Kvothe being a dopelganger for Harry Potter... ;)

Oh, and BTW, does anyone know offhand how it's pronounced on the audio book? I've never listened to them, but I think (?) that Thistlepong has copies of the audio...
Carl Banks
427. robocarp
Blue Elodin @ 419

The enemy in Skarpi's story was sealed behind stone doors after Drossen Tor. The poisoning probably happened after Drossen Tor. So even if you don't buy into the idea that Lanre is Shehyn's enemy, it's still likely a different person than Skarpi's enemy.

Though not necessarily. The Cthaeh seems to be able to meddle with things even when limited to its tree (hint?), so perhaps the enemy would be able to poison people even when sealed behind stone doors. Maybe this is what Shehyn means by "pushing and pulling", the enemy can't open the doors.
428. Bue Elodin

Whereas for Halixax, "no door is sealed" - which would make him an ideal tool for someone who cannot open doors.

So, to me, the "pushing and pulling" wording (thanks, I was not aware that she puts it that way) does indeed suggest that the one who poisoned the seven others is not Lanre, but the enemy behind the doors of stone who poisoned Lanre as well (who is now able to pass through every door).

Of course, that woould lead to the arithmetical problem which you analyzed so convincingy,
429. Blue Elodin

If you break it up like that, it could also be:

New - Ar - Re

With "Ar" as in "Al-ar" (powerful-concept) and "Re" as the rune for finding.

In that case: Newarre = New-Concept-Finding.

Fits with "Place of new identity (concept of self)" which, of course, Newarre is for Kvothe who is now Kote.

And it could be taken as either (or all) "Place where a new identity has been found" (Kote) or "Place where a new identity is being found" or "Place where a new identity will be found" - the last two meanings referring to Kote turning into Kvothe again.
430. Blue Elodin
Since we know that other names (in Ademic, at least) can have three meanings, perhaps we may try that for "Newarre" as well.

So, perhaps something like: "The place is called Newarre, which, depending on the pronounciation, means

1. New War started
2. New identity found
3. Nowhere (referring to Kvothe's having been taken out of the world, and in a sense, out of life like a cut flower)."
thistle pong
431. thistlepong

The pronunciation comes up from time. I've never managed to get Tor to display special characters, so... it's like NEHwahr.
432. La_Niña
@426. JohnPoint In the audiobooks, Newarre is pronounced just "neh-WHERE". The audiobook reader pronounces Auri different to Pat though ("OW-oori" vs. "ari"), so I'm not sure how vauable that information is.
thistle pong
433. thistlepong
@432 (426)

I went back and listened again. Ari, Auri, and even Ariel are pretty much R-E. Occasionally Nick will pronounce it with a slight AWree sound. The only thinkg that sounded like Ow-oori was Tanee asking Trapis for a story.
Carl Banks
434. robocarp
Blue Elodin @ 428

Based on context, my impression was that "pushing and pulling" is just a metaphor for brute force. It is interesting that those happen to be the two main things you do to a door.
435. Blue Elodin
Concerning "Newarre": It seems interesting that in the Italian translation the battle of Drossen Tor is the"Nevar" of Vasten Tor, if I remember correctly. That might link "Newarre" and Drossen Tor.
436. Blue Elodin
@ 428

Concerning metaphors:

It seems that metaphors in Rothfuss should always be taken with care, especially if we remember Elodin's "Are your really afraid of that?". They might perhaps just mean exactly what they say. I just realised something that may have been discussed before: In a conversation about figures of speech in NOTW Wil asks about the meaning of "How is the road to Tinue"? At the end of the conversation Kvothe says something in Siaru which means (or so he tells us) "Don't put a spoon in your eye". Now, just like the road to Tinue, that figure of speech may have had a root in history: Selitos who put a sharp stone through his eye.
437. Marco.
Has "How is the road to Tinue?" been discussed as a passphrase, or signifier of membership in a group? (Ala the things the Edema do to indicate to each other that they're in the club)

The reason I ask is that on rereading D1, something struck me about when Kvothe and Chronicler talk for the first time in the bar. Kvothe interrupts him to ask him how the road to Tinue is. Why would he do that? It's certianly not the polite "how are things?" idiom. It has the feel to me of looking for a particular response - Maybe the Amyr secret handshake?

If this has been discussed and put to bed, (a) apologies, and (b) could somebody point me towards the discussion?
thistle pong
438. thistlepong

I've brought it up before (and will see if I can point you to it asap), but I think you and I might be the only people who consider it a possibility. I actually think there's a real response in "The Boy Who Loved the Moon." I think that's the response Kvothe was looking for. And Devan failed to give it.
John Graham
439. JohnPoint
Marco@438 and thistle@438:

Hmm, I missed this possibility before, but on initial reflection, I like it as a distinct possibility. A quick search reveals that "Tinuë" only comes up 6 times in NotW and 7 in WMF, and only about half refer to the "road to Tinuë" but it could certainly be a code or password.... Hmm, have to think about that one more.
Sahi Rioth
440. Sahirioth
Re: the road to Tinuë as a password

I like it. It seems like a good way to hide a password phrase in plain sight. Compare with 'shibboleth' or how some jews used the phrase 'am hu?' (pronounced 'umm who'), meaning 'His people?' in Hebrew. If the response was 'am hu' (without the rising cadence) they knew it was safe to talk without fear of persecution.
441. Regicide Fan
Blue Elodin @435

Based on previous threads, I'm on board with Drossen Tor representing the "black dress" in the riddles and the Lackless door lying inside the Sheer (which is described as having black scars on it). If Drossen is a play on the word "dress" and Tor is meant as black (in the Pashto language tor means black), then you'd think Rothfuss would do the same thing in the Italian version, which it looks like he may have done. Dress in Italian is vestito (vestire as a verb), which gives us:

Drossen : dress :: Vasten : vest-

Just something I thought I'd throw out there. I love what you're doing Blue Elodin!
Ryan Murray
442. TheYllest
Re: The road to Tinuë

There are as mentioned above, a combined thriteen references to Tinue, and while some may reference the road, only twice does one character directly ask another character "How is the road to Tinuë?". These two instances are when Kote asks Chronicler in the frame story and when the man in the cave from Hespe's story asks Jax. When I first read through, it seemed more prevalent than that, but perhaps all the other references plus Wil's conversation with Kvothe about the meaning of the phrase skewed my perspective. However, it is clearly important and reiterated throughout the narrative. It is also worth noting that the only people we have seen ask that question have been namers of clout (or previously as it were with Kote). I like the idea that they could be hiding a secret passphrase in plain sight, perhaps Amyr? Arcanists? Namers? Who knows...

Regicide Fan @441

Good catch with the translation. I have been tempted on a number of occasions to order the Spanish or German versions but my tenuous grasp on the languages would likely not be beneficial when facing Rothfuss prose. I wish he would open the non-spoilery parts of the translator forums. It would be fun to go through. I like most everyone else really want to know what happened at Drossen Tor.
443. Marco.
Re: Tinue as secret handshake

Did Chronicler recognize it?
The innkeeper held up a hand, quieting him. "Before we discuss the possibility that you've addled yourwits with that crack to the head, tell me, how is the road to Tinuë?"

"What?" Chronicler asked, irritated. "I wasn't heading to Tinuë. I was ... oh. Well even aside from lastnight, the road's been pretty rough. I was robbed off by Abbot's Ford, and I've been on foot ever since.But it was all worth it since you're actually here." The scribe glanced at the sword hanging over the barand drew a deep breath, his expression becoming vaguely anxious. "I'm not here to cause trouble, mindyou. I'm not here because of the price on your head." He gave a weak smile. "Not that I could hope totrouble you—"

"Fine," the innkeeper interupted as he pulled out a white linen cloth and began to polish the bar. "Who areyou then?"
(emphasis mine)
444. Marco.
Sorry for the multiple posts, but the way Kvothe asks the question, the hitch in the response, and the interruption of the response all feel off to me. I think there's more than meets the eye here, and the only thing I can think of is a secret handshake of some sort.

To add to 442's list of possibilities:
Skarpi's "friends"

Lastly, if somebody finds themselves at at Rothfuss Q&A session and feels like taking a shot in the dark, "How is the road to Tinue?" might yield an interesting response...
thistle pong
445. thistlepong
I don't think so. It looks like he's confused and frustrated anf begins to answer literally. He catches himself and answers colloquially. The password answer would be, "It's long. And hard and weary."
Steven Halter
446. stevenhalter
That would be amusing. It does kind of look like a handshake phrase of some sort, and Chronicler coming up short is a tad suspicious. The rest of his responses seem fairly standard though. Nothing like "The chicken sings at midnight." or anything. "The roads been pretty rough." and "it was all worth it" could be set phrases but they also work perfectly well here.
447. Blue Elodin
@ 441

Thanks, I wasn' t aware of the possible play on "Black dress". So, istthere perhaps a connection to the black "dress" Lanre made from the hide of the thing he slew in that battle?

@ 442

In German, it's "the Blac of Drossen Tor". I can't seem to form a word meaning "dress" out of that, though. But the German translation (though very good on the whole) seems to have some minor inaccuracies. For instance, Alder Whin's "But don't bring thunder" is translated "Bringt aber keinen Donner mit " (But don't bring any thunder), while it should have been "Bringt aber nicht Donner mit" to contain the same ambiguity as the English wording.
448. Blue Elodin
@ 442 Sorry for the double post, but I would like to add an afterhought:

If the phrase "How is the road to Tinue" has its origin in the fact that Tinue was the only surviving city after Lanre's attack, its use in the story of the boy who loved the moon seems an example for the confusion of historical facts in stories - since Iax stole the moon long before Lanre turned and only Tinue remained.
449. Blue Elodin
The password answer to "How is the road to Tinue?" might also be "Not for traveling"(and have a connection to the line in the Lackless riddle).
John Graham
450. JohnPoint
The most straightforward reading of the question "How is the road to Tinuë?" is that it's a colloquial way of asking "What's up?", as Kvothe explains to Wil when they discuss it while waiting for his whipping.

In my opinion, that reading is completely germaine to the context with Chronicler: Kvothe asks Chronicler in Newarre. Since Newarre is (somewhat) near Tinuë, Chronicler takes it as literal question -- "how is the road to tinuë?" After starting to say that he wasn't going there, he realizes that K meant the question in the colloquial sense: what's up? What's the news? How are events? And answers that question with a brief history of the last few days.

Until yesterday, I've been totally fine with that scenario, and I still think it reads 100% a-ok like that. However, upon further reflection, it definitely seems like there could be more to it.

The expression "how is the road to Tinuë?" is only asked twice -- in the story of Jax, and K to Chronicler -- and referenced by Wil. Wil indicates that he is constantly being asked:
“People are always asking me about the road to Tinuë. Endlessly they say, ‘how is the road to Tinuë?’ What does it mean?”
So, if Wil is constantly asked it at the University, why do we only see it used twice? Why didn't Kvothe ask the Tinker in Trebon (or visa versa)? Why don't we see it some other time when Kvothe is on the road or someone new comes into town? Curious.

In summary, I find it interesting that:

1) Wil is "endlessly" being asked, and
2) We rarely see it used.

So, is it a colloquial expression that we just don't see too often? Is it a coded question that relates to higher-level Arcanum matters? (Which could be why Wil hears it a lot around the U -- people who aren't in "the know" have just picked it up, use it a lot, and it has spread out from the University a bit.) Is it a coded question that relates to something older/more powerful (Naming, the Creation War, the Amyr, etc.)?

If there is more to it than the simple colloquial expression, Chronicler definitely fails the test. I think thistlepong's answer (e.g. @445) is probably the "correct" answer, too.

And, is this a hidden etymology for the word continue (like Vintas/vintage and ravel)? We think that Tinuë was the one city that con-Tinuë-d following the Creation War -- does the linguistic connection provide more evidence that we're right about Tinuë?
451. Marco.
Why didn't Kvothe ask the Tinker in Trebon (or visa versa)? Why don't we see it some other time when Kvothe is on the road or someone new comes into town? Curious.
If we accept it as a secret handshake, then one possible explanation is that Kvothe was not yet in the club. When he askes Chronicler, his having found the Amyr is in the past, whereas at the university he hadn't yet.
452. Blue Elodin
Since we know that certain metals are important (iron, copper) has a possible connections of tinkers to (the element) "tin" been discussed? I guess, Tin-ue made me think of the Tin-kers.

@450 A play on "Con-tinue-d" seems exactly like someting Rothuss would do. Brilliant idea.
John Graham
453. JohnPoint
Marco @451: That's pretty much exactly my point.

Even if it's a "secret handshake", Kvothe was aware of the term already (as evidenced by his conversation with Wil long before he goes to Trebon). According to Wil, people ask him all the time, and (presumably) Wil's not part of the club yet either. So, if it's as common as Wil indicates, why don't we see someone use it some other time? (Like, for instance, when he's sharing news with the Tinker, exactly the sort of time when you would think one would use the colloquial expression.)

So, my takeaway impression is that either: 1) it's a colloquial expression that just happens to be more common at the University, though Kvothe was aware of it prior to attending, or 2) there is something more important going on (à la the "secret handshake"). Alternatively, it might not be important one way or another and there's no specific reason that Pat didn't use it somewhere else -- just a fluke.

Blue Elodin @452 : we've definitely discussed Tinkers, and relationships to tin, copper, and real-world tinkers. And possible connections to the "Mender heresies". Felurian gives us decent evidence that (at least some) Tinkers a/o their donkeys are from the Fae ("Glamoured as a pack mule laden...") No conclusions, though.
Carl Banks
454. robocarp
JohnPoint@450 and others

"How is the road to Tinuë": it's clearly a common idiom in the Commonwealth at least. Perhaps not so much in Vintas, which is maybe why Chronicler gets confused. He doesn't seem to take it as secret handshake question either way. Kote does seem to intend the question to be more than meets the eye.

What could the handshake signify? The only thing I can of is being a member of the Amyr. Anything other ideas? Is Kote secretly an Amyr?

(I actually posted a thought about Tinuë and "continue" once, but it seemed so obvious I retracted it.)

Blue Elodin @ 452

I wouldn't read too much into tinker and tin, for two reasons. 1. "Tin" used to be a generic term for metal, not necessarily to the specific element we use it for today (and PR certainly knows this--in fact a while back we established that the Spanish translation for tinker uses a word connected to copper), and 2. there are no other significant references in the story specifically to the element tin (that I can remember). I do think it's relevant that the word tinker is connected generically to metalwork, though.
jum bles
455. jumbles
@441 Re: Black Dress / Blac of Drossen Tor

I'm so glad someone else thinks this. Though you said Tor is black, and I think Blac is black. In Spanish, Blac of Drossen Tor is Nagra de Vessten Tor and black dress is negro vestido.
Blac = black, Nagra = negro
Drossen = dress, Vessten = vestido
Based on what you and Blue Elodin said, this holds true for Italian as well: Nevar = nero, Vasten = vestito
Several months ago I posted the French version of the Lady Lackless black dress line on another site. I didn't post it here because people here didn't seem too interested when I had brought up the black dress connection to Blac of Drossen Tor. The French line is: Sous sa robe noire sept choses
Unfortunately I haven't been able to find the French version of Blac of Drossen Tor, so I can't verify that the French follows the same pattern. If it does follow the same pattern then Blac and Drossen would become some sort of transormations of noire and robe.

JohnPoint@450,453 Re: The road to Tinuë

Wil may hear the phrase so much more often than we (and Kvothe) do because he works in the Archives where (I believe) Amyr are constantly dropping off books. So Wil is constantly interacting with them.
Sahi Rioth
456. Sahirioth
Re: Drossen Tor - black dress (jumbles @455)

Right, that does it. I'm going to go into a bookstore and sneakily (that's a word, right?) find that passage in the Swedish version. If that version has something akin to 'svart' (black) then I think the theory is confirmed. The Swedish word for dress, however, is 'klänning' so I'm guessing they'll have used another word for that.
457. Blue Elodin
On analogies between the frame story and the story told within it: Before the Chandrian attacked Kvothe's troop there had been a storm (16 days before the atack). When Kvothe and Bast discuss how it was pssible for a single Scrael to attack Carter, Kvothe hyothezises that the storm a few days ago might have scattered them. Is this perhaps a kind of foreshadowing that the Chandrian are going to come to Newarre after the story is told? It seems potentially significant that Kvothe and Arliden discuss when exactly the storm had been. Though of course, it also reads well when taken at the literal narrative level: "So long ago and still we have to deal with fallen trees blocking the road."
Two cents
458. Twocents
So, I just finished my first reread of the two books, and after reading a couple of these threads, I have come up with my own theory (apologies if this has already been discussed). I doubt it will happen, but I found it interesting none the less.

People have already theorized that CTH will end up playing a bigger role in D3. This got me thinking of how he has already influenced K’s life and where it could go. We know his decision to go to Ademre was influenced by what CTH said. Among the knowledge he gathered there, he also got a very old sword. After this, he went back to the Maer (the CTH told him to do this, but he would have ended up there anyways). Here, the Maer shows him the Loeclos box.

K describes the box as having a lemon smell to it. He also describes the tree that CTH is in as having a lemon smell (among other scents). I have read other people suggest that the Loecless box is made out of the same wood as the CTH tree, and I think it is a very plausible theory. Assuming this is true, it could make sense that the box could contain the CTH’s name (or part of his name) trapping him in the tree.

It is never stated that he has always been in the tree, and many people here have stated theories with him the world (as Lanre, Haliax, and old man in the cave). If people knew Iax spoke with the CTH before he started the CW, then it would make sense that people would want to trap CTH after they put Iax beyond the doors of stone. And the precedent for trapping someone with their name in a box is set.

But if the CTH is all knowing, he knew this would happen. So if he did get trapped, it meant there was probably no way to avoid it, but it would make sense that he would take steps to get out of the prison.

I think most people agree that K’s sword was forged during or before the CW thanks to the mention of Drossen Tor in the Atas. The Atas also says it was forged for an unknown reason and was cast aside. What if Chael forged the sword under the direction of CTH (or possibly was CTH) for the purpose of escaping his prison. CTH would have known the sword would eventually end up in K’s hands, and K would have the tools/blood/whatever one would need to open the box. PR has spent a lot of time telling K that the sword is a tool used for many things besides killing (ie. Cutting food, carving wood). What if Caesura was made with the ability to open the box in K’s hand? This would free CTH from the tree and let him loose on the world once again. Free, he would be able to cause much more trouble.

I know this theory has plenty of holes in it, such as the fact, it ignores the Lackless rhymes about the box, and the fact it has nothing to do with the Chandrian. But it would certainly be a long, beautiful game CTH would be playing.
John Graham
459. JohnPoint
Robocarp @454: I agree that it appears to be a common idiom in the 4C. In general, I don't think it's a code or pass phrase, but it wouldn't surprise me if it turned out that way.

Sorry to steal your idea on "con-Tinuë-d". Off handI don't remember seeing it when you posted it before. I don't know that it's necessarily too obvious and thus should be disqualified -- for instance, I really only noticed it when I did a search for "tinue" in the ebook.

Twocents @458, re Chael as the Cthaeh: Hmm, that's interesting. We should not the similarities in the two names, which could relate to a common origin. Personally, I'm in the "Selitos = the Cthaeh" camp, but it's possible that they could be all the same... We should also note that (depending on the pronunciation, Chael could be pronounced as "sell" like in Selitos)
jum bles
460. jumbles
Twocents @458: You should go to Part 20 of The Wise Man's Fear reread and read comments 17 and 33 by JohnPoint and thistlepong. JohnPoint suggests that the obsidian Selitos used to put out his eye is what is in the Loeclos box, and thistlepong then connects all of that to the Cthaeh.
Carl Banks
461. robocarp
JohnPoint @ 459

No worries. I'm pretty sure you didn't steal my "idea" unless you happened to be reading in about a two hour window before I took it down. It might not be jump-in-your-face obvious, but I'm sure many people have had the same idea independently. And I very much doubt it's a coincidence; PR had to have been aware of the resemblance at least. The very presense of the dieresis on the e indicates that he expected people to pronounce it "tin-you". So I guess what I'm saying is, I think your observation is very valid.

However, that only would mean PR wants us to think Tinuë is the surviving city, not that is actually is. My current opinion is that Tinuë isn't the surviving city, although it was built on the ruins of Tinusa. (Short explanation: it's in the wrong place. Yll seems to have been the most civilized country in the period between the Creation War and earliest written history, so that would be my first guess where the surviving city was.)
462. Nameless
Re: Drossen Tor

Tor is the german word for gate/portal. Because of this I always imagined the Blac of Drossen Tor as a battle at some kind of gateway. This also fits that at the end of the blac the enemy was locked behind the doors of stone. As far as I know Rothfuss had german classes, so maybe this influenced his naming powers.
This would still allow that the black dress in the lackless poem referes to Lanres black suite of armor.
Steven Halter
463. stevenhalter
Tor is a hill or pile of rocks on a hill in English. It is also an anonymity service and a publisher of science fiction. So, it could refer to that fateful occasion when Stubby the Rocket went up the hill wearing a classic black dress, stilleto heels and a harlequin mask. Rioting ensued.
Yes, I'm sure that must be it.
thistle pong
464. thistlepong
I think we have to trust stevenhalter as the senior member of the DoIL.

I wanted to mention that while all the speculation about black dresses might turn out to be true, there's a potent literary referent for that portion of the Lanre story.

In Sir Thomas Malory's Le Morte d'Arthur, the first stage of Sir Gareth of Orkney's alchemical journey culminates in defeating the black knight and wearing his armor.

(Is there a source for Pat taking German classes?)
465. Trubadix

On youtube there's a video where he says that German is the only foreign language he speaks. In the blog about idioms he also says that one of his favourite German idioms is 'einen Vogel haben' (to have a bird) which means being crazy.
thistle pong
466. thistlepong
@465 I'd be grateful if you'd link the video ( or both )
467. Trubadix

Still looking for the blog.
468. Trubadix
There it is:
469. Blue Elodin
Drossen Tor = Stone Dorrs.

Close, but probably not close enough. Apologies, if that has been posted before.
470. Blue Elodin
If I remember correctly, the chapter in which Skarpi tells the story of the fall of Myr Tariniel is called "Lanre turned" in English. Has there been a discussion of a potential significance of "Lan returned". To me, it seems that the wording points to "Lan" as a significant linguistic element that means something that is being returned in that chapter. There are a few words that may contain "Lan" as well like "Lannis".
thistle pong
471. thistlepong
That's interesting. It would certainly imply a previous meeting of significance.

Does Calanthis, the name of the tiny birds Kvothe poisons snd the royal family of Vintas remain unchanged in German? How about Kvothe's name for them, sipquicks? Or Alveron's, flits?
472. selizaw
Well I found this reread in July, and it has taken me since then to geth through the posts and the comments, and I have to say, it's as addicting as denner resin.

The idea that I have found the most satisfying is that Selitos is now the Cthaeh. I have made it fit in quite well with Denna's song of Seven Sorrows, and done some extrapolating from there. So let's play some What If...

What if the moon is a source of great power for whoever controls it? What if there were a king in the mortal world at one time, who held all the power of the moon in his hands?

What if Selitos convinced Iax to make a power grab for the moon, and make a run for Fae, keeping the moon there? Iax is convinced. He steals the moon, but only partially, inciting the Creation War and heading off to Fae. This leaves Selitos to fight the war.

Many years and many deaths come and go and bang, we have the Blac of Drossen Tor.

What if at the Blac of Drossen Tor it is the enemy of Selitos AND IAX that is set behind the doors of stone? That would be the king working to get the moon back into the mortal world full time, so he can have his power back. Doesn't Fela dream of a king behind the Four Plate Door?

What if after Lyra's death, Lanre/Haliax came to see Selitos's gambit to steal the moon as a huge betrayal, bringing centuries of war down upon his people and killing the love of his life. He knows that if the king beyond the doors of stone were to return, this king would orchestrate a way of returning the moon to the mortal world full time, somehow bringing about the complete destruction of everything that is left. That sounds pretty good to him.

What if, after the fall of Myr Tariniel the next goal of the Seven was to get the Door of Stone open and bring back the king?

What if the Sithe and Tehlu's gang are one and the same? They witnessed the fall of Myr Tariniel, and are now trying to bring justice to the Seven?

What if Selitos responded to the fall of Myr Tariniel by creating the Amyr and vowing to stop at nothing to bring an end to the Seven, for the greater good?

What if Ferule was the betrayer of Myr Tariniel, and Selitos had it out for him in particular?

What if Tehlu witnessed one of Selitos's crimes committed for the greater good, and bound him to a tree where he became known as the Chtaeh, keeping him there by binding him to a piece of obsidian in a lockless box?

What if he put this box in the safekeeping of a family of human allies, the Locleoses?

What if the Sithe vow to protect the world from Selitos? Granted, since they can only punish what they witness, they don't always make the greatest guards. For example, they were busy with other things the day that Kvothe came to vitis the tree, so they can't really do anything about him now.

Time passes. We come to the story we all know and love.

What if at some point after Kvothe left the caravan, Denna was possessed by a skinchanger? This explains the reintroduction of Denna at the Eolian, because she's no longer just the Denna that Kvothe knew, she's been altered somehow by the skin changer.

What if she is trying to fight this posession, and begins to hunt for secret knowledge that can help. Along the way she finds herself a patron who is one of the Chandrian (and Dagon). Yes he is sadistic and not so very nice to her, but she's aware of the skinchanger, and the things it makes her do, and she deserves to be punished for these things. Her patron has promised to help her if she will just do what he asks, and she knows he will if she just sticks around long enough.

Eventually, Denna's patron gets her doing some geneological research to get on the Maer's good side. She finds the first bits and pieces of the story of Lanre this way... doing geneological esearch... possibly on the Maer.

What if the Maer is a decendant of Lanre?

What if he knows this and was looking for the Amyr to wipe them out instead of to join them?

And then we get to day 3. So here's what I think is going to happen:
Kvothe walks in to all this, believing only what he's heard from Skarpi, who is spreading pro Amyr propoganda.

Well lets say that Kvothe has recently returned from a trip to Fae, and not the nice side, where he's been exposed to some pretty nasty creatures and helped out a prince named Bastas. He finally recognizes that Denna is possessed and tricks the demon--I mean skinchanger--into leaving her alone, and gaining his heart's desire: Denna from the caravan.

But he's not done. He still feels he must save her from her patron's clutches, and a fight--with an angel/Ferule--ensues. Ferule/Dagon is killed and Kvothe claims his sword. When all the dust has settled, Denna smacks him upside the head for being dense, and still trying to be the white knight that she doesn't want, and ruining everything. He finally gets the other side of the story of the Seven. Let's say the Maer (who is now the king) is the one telling it, so Kvothe knows it's the real deal.

The upshot of it is that everyone Kvothe knows is now on board with Haliax's goal: to open the Door of Stone and get the king back. So they head over to the university and meet up with Devi, who's been on this project for years. They are joined by Wil and Sim and the whole entire gang. Yay!

And it works. The door is opened, the king crosses. But it seems Haliax has pulled one over on everyone. They knew he wanted the doors open, but they didn't know he wanted them open so that the king could destroy the world. So Pandora's box of evil nastiness is opened. The king of Vintas hears about this and repents that he had any part in making this happen. He turns on Kvothe and his gang, and calls for their heads.

Kvothe realizes that whoops, opening the door was a bad idea, and challenges the king outside the Eolian, and kicks him to the curb, really, really permanantly.

But Ambrose happens to be in the neighborhood and knows that the Maer is looking for them, so he captures them, takes credit for the win and ships them off to Renere to be executed.

Some of them get executed, Wil? Sim? Fela? But before the king can get to all of them Bast shows up, and orchestrates an escape for the rest. Kvothe is completely wrecked by the loss of those closest to him, and swears off any involvement in anything ever. he's just going to retire to the middle of nowhere and open that inn that he's been dreaming about. But Devi and Denna just can't let this whole thing slide. They feel that the world needs to know the truth, and begin a rebellion against the king.

Which leads us to the frame.
473. Blue Elodin
@ 471

"Calanthis" remains unchanged. The colloquial terms are "Flittiche" (Kvothe) and "Schnipper" (Alveron).
475. Blue Elodin
Just a speculation on admittedly shaky grounds: : If "Lanre turned" is supposed to be taken as "Lan returned" as well and "Lan" means something significant, perhaps there is a linguistic connnection to Felurian's "Ciar nalias". It seems to mean "Extinguish the light" or "No light". If "Nalias" is a verbal form that means "extinguish/reduce to nothing" then it's interesting that "Nal" is what you get if you reverse "Lan". Since it seems to be Haliax's plan to reduce the world to nothing, there might be a connection.
Sahi Rioth
476. Sahirioth
@Blue Elodin, 469, 475
I have to say, that feels like stretching it quite a bit. If we give credit to almost-anagrams then I should note that Elxa Dal is an anagram of Alaxel if we lose the D.
477. Blue Elodin
A thought on "nal" and "lan":

When Kvothe first arrives at the university and goes to admissions, he is asked for the nine basic logical mistakes and can't remember the technical name of the one he and Ben used to name after Emperor Nalto.

I think we have some material to answer the question why a logical mistake is named after Nalto.

1. In Elodin's seminar, Uresh reminds Kvothe that he made a logical mistake in asking Elodin for proof because non-existence cannot be proven. So, the ninth logical fallacy might well be dealing with non-existence in a wrong way. (Another problem in that context would be that from non-existence everything can be deduced in a formally corrrect way.)

2. In Felurian's " Ciar nal-ias (extinguish the light)", "nalias" might well be the term that is connected with non existence (put out the light = reduce the light to non-existence).

So if "nal" means "nothing/non-existence" and the ninth basic logical mistake is to deduce something from non-existence, then it would be fitting to name this mistake after Nal-to.

Perhaps it is too wild a speculation that the "Lan" in "Lan-re" is an anagram of "Nal" (and have the opposite meaning) but it seems interesting that in addition to "Lan-nis"(a month in summer) we also have "Lan-iel Young Again".
thistle pong
478. thistlepong
@Blue Elodin

this was posted in another forum:
Unfortunately the german translation is not that good. For example the song about Natalia Lackless: in german you can't figure out that the true identity of Arlides wife is hidden in the song, especially not we you read it loud :). The translation has its good sites and bad sites…
Would you agree? We've asked a lot of generous multilingual readers about how many of the character names change or stay the same over the course of the reread. I don't recall anything like this coming up, though.

I know several of the Potter translations make an effort to preserve clues and symbolism. Pat's commented on his involvement with the translators a couple times. I can't help but wonder if it's only a clue in English, and thus maybe not a clue at all.
479. Blue Elodin
@ 478 thistlepong.

I would agree partially. Some clues are lost in the translation (as is the allusion to Kvothe's Ademic name in "Don't bring thunder"). In the case of Netalia Lackless, however, the tranlsator seems to have made a conscious effort to preserve the clue. The last lines are: "Ich nie im Leben // In meinem Streben // zu lieben locker lass". Where "locker lass" of course alludes to "Lockless". It's definitely not as good a clue as in English, and harder to catch as it alludes only to her family name, but once you know it, it's definitely there.
Carl Banks
481. robocarp
selizaw @ 472

The Lockless box contains an item binding Selitos to the tree seems to be a major popular theory. (I wonder if Cthaeh is thown around his tree whenever someone shakes the Lockless box?) What you write makes a lot of sense but you leave out quite a lot stuff out. To improve the theory maybe think about how to explain some of these things:

Where does the conflict between Knowers and Shapers come into play? It seems like you're saying it's a red herring, and the Creation War wasn't about keeping the natural order ("Creation") by stopping the Shapers (as Felurian suggests) but about power. I.e., the "Knowers" were only Knowers because that meant they got to keep the moon.

What happens to Iax? Felurian says the the one who stole the moon is now behind stone doors. At some point something else must've happened to him.

Where do the Amyr fit into this? Remember they were founded by Selitos.

The one major thing I'd disagree with is Ferule being the one to betray Myr Tariniel. It's quite obviously Lanre/Haliax in both Skarpi and Denna's stories, and Ferule was needed elsewhere, as there were six other cities to betray. Whatever the Cthaeh's issue with Cinder is, it's something else.
482. Blue Elodin
A question for those who know the audiooks: How is "Nalt" pronounced? Does it sound similar to "naught"?
484. selizaw
I don't feel like I have a good handle on where knowing stops and where shaping begins.When Selitos uses Haliax's name to curse him, is he claiming some sort of mastery over Haliax? Is this knowing or shaping? When Lyra calls Lanre back from the dead, is she knowing or shaping?

That was why I'm uncomfortable saying this side was the shapers, and that side was knowers, I don't know which side was which.

Kvothe cetrainly sees naming as having mastery over a thing, he says so in his conversation with Felurian. This comes from the tradition of naming that he has learned at the university. Is the university teaching knowing, or shaping? Or is there no longer a distintion between the two?
Kate Hunter
485. KateH
@selizaw, #484

I agree it's ambiguous and somewhat confusing. But after much pondering, the best I came up with is that there's a sort of Naming-Shaping continuum. Like this:

a) Naming/Knowing - understanding and knowing the essence of something, without exerting one's will over that thing. (What the Adem seem to do, and what I think the Lethani teaches.)

b) Naming/commanding - using one's deep understanding to control something. (What is taught at the University.) And...

c) Shaping - using one's deep mastery of Naming/commanding to go a step further and alter the very nature of a thing. (This is akin to creation. Probably no one in the human realm can do this anymore, since, as Elodin says, magic today is like well watered wine compared to ages past.)

I posted a theory about the Adem and the Lethani and how they tie into the various levels of Naming/Shaping. Because I put in on an older thread, it hasn't gotten too much attention. If you're interested, it's comment #64 on this post. I'd appreciate hearing responses to it.

After further reflection on that theory, I think it establishes the entire reason for the Ademre interlude in WMF. It's the Lethani that absolutely must be included in the book, not the opportunity for K to pick up some fighting skills. Otherwise, K's time in Ademre seems like a clunky, kitchen sink add-on to a novel which is very full already.
thistle pong
486. thistlepong
happened upon this
Sunday 8th 10PM PST/ Monday 9th 5PM ADST (For our fellow aussies)
This is out second live stream book club, we host a google hangout with a bunch of fans of the book and this time the author himself. If you'd like to be on the panel you can email with all of your details and what you love about the book (a gmail account and stable internet connection is required) Otherwise you can tune in to the live stream by subscribing to and ask Patrick all of your questions!
487. Marco.
An hour and 38 minutes into the recap of the geek bomb event he talks about the "I'm sorry book", which he talked about at his Chicago event about a month ago. Of note:

-The decision to go down the path of the 100,000 word modeg novel in front of D3 has been made.
-It's about 2/3 done.
-The estimate of how long it has going to take has been revised to "a couple of months" from the "good month" he estimated a month ago.
Ryan Murray
488. TheYllest
Concerning upcoming (non-D3) 4C fiction: So far as I can count there are two confirned 4C stories in the works, and one rumored graphic novel.

The first confirmed and finished story is "The Lightning Tree" from the GRRM anthology "Rogues," which is rumored to be the Bast story PR mentions here,

The second, confirmed recently by his appearance in Chicago, is the Modegan Novel which is nigh on finished. I have heard rumors that PR has stated this story to be about Laniel Young-Again.

The third is rumored to be a graphic novel representation of Hespe's story about Jax and the Moon. I haven't heard much on this one, and can't even honestly remember where I heard it in the first place.

This is all the information I have concerning these upcoming stories. Does anyone have further confirmation or information regarding content, publishing tineline, etc?
thistle pong
489. thistlepong
The Yllest @488

"The Lightning Tree" in Rogues (September 2014)

The interlibrum novel is about Laniel. It can't possibly come out before 2015.

The graphic novel hasn't been mentioned since he made a couple referemces to it early last year. I wouldn't count on it. Plans fall through.

The Adventures of the Princess and Mr. Wiffle: The Dark of Deep Below was released at the end of last month.
John Graham
490. JohnPoint
Paul and Storm mock Pat in "Write Like the (Name of the) Wind" as a stretch goal for Worldbuilders (it's a filk of their hilarious "Write George, Write like the Wind", and well adapted to KKC).
Vincent Brisse
491. MadPan
I don't know if it was noticed yet (it surely was, I'm just a newcomer), but I think the hypothesis that the king that was killed by Kvothe was Simon is highly unlikely.
In one of the first chapters of The Name of the Wind, when the Chronicler says "Some stories paint you as a red-handed killer." He replies with "Everyone of them deserved it." I don't think that Sim "deserves it" since he is painted as such a nice guy in the books.
That's quite a relief.
492. Scriv #2
I'm fairly certain no one has brought this up, but I do like the idea and I see a fair chance of it working out. It is about being a KingKiller and killing a Poet-King.

I think some basic set up first. So I've seen a few posts listing the Vintas order of succession and it was something along the lines of the Royal Family, Prince Regents, and a couple others. Then the Maer and the Jakis family. Basically if everyone ends up getting killed in D3 up until the Maer, then he becomes king. The Jakis family then is next in line.

We also see a few times from the mercenary company that Kvothe travels with and even the Maer that people from Vint are pretty superstitious and distrusting of magic. From the frame story we see that they still have some basic connections to the Tehlin church because of how they treat the scrael. Martin also seems to be fairly religious at least from how prays during the attack on the bandit camp.

I know I didn't give any specific quotes or anything, I don't have the books. My apologies. But I'm fairly sure everything I said is 100 percent accurate. Now onto the actual theory!

So basically, I think Kvothe kills Maer who is the Poet-King and Ambrose is the Penitent King.

We already have a fair basis for Kvothe and the Maer + Meluan having a pretty bad relationship. Let's say the Jakis's manage to get rid of all the other people in the line of succession so that Maer becomes king and Meluan queen. If there is some fighting between Kvothe and the Maer over the Lockless box then it could evolve into Kvothe having to kill him for some reason.

My basis for Kvothe killing the Maer is pretty much based over him saying he never killed anyone who didn't deserve it and his amused reaction about the sword being callsed Kaysera the Poet-Killer. I'm sure we could think of circumstances in which the Maer could deserve killing. And Kvothe would find the "Poet-Killer" part amusing because KVOTHE wrote all of the songs and letters that the Maer gave to Meluan (I'm assuming that this would be the basis for Maer being called a Poet-King). And not only did Kvothe write all those, but Kvothe hates poets and in reality really only wrote one poem for the Maer to use. So, this is why Kvothe would do it and be amused by it.

If all of this happened, the Jakis family would then be up for the throne.

Here is where I run into one small problem that I'm unsure of. The Penitent Kings colors are blue and white like the Maer's. I'm assuming the Jakis family's isn't. So possibly Meluan survives and Jakis marries into her family instead? This is my biggest problem.

Regardless, if that is solved we can move on.

If Kvothe got into an argument with the Maer about the box that ended up in violence and Kvothe killed the Maer using magic, then natural Vintish superstition would get everyone really angry at the University and arcanists. And who is next in line for the throne (minus his father).......Ambrose, an arcanist! Here is the Penitent King. He ascends to the throne and tells everyone that he deeply regrets how his former "friend" Kvothe has turned out to be such a dark, misguided soul that dabbles in the dark arts. He claims that he went to the University to learn history and law and how to be a good King and whatnot. Then he says even that was too much and he is sorry and he is now the Penitent King.

This would also explain why Kvothe seems so adamant about not wanting even one person (Aaron) to die for the Penitent King.

Sorry for the long theory, but I hadn't seen it before so I thought I should explain in full. Also sorry again for the lack of quotes.

The biggest problem I can see is the Penitent King's colors being the same as the Maers. Can anybody think of a decent explanation for that?
Sahi Rioth
493. Sahirioth
@ Scriv #2 (492)

See the speculative summary part 4 for discussion on kings. Also, the Poet-King referred to by Vashet is a king of one of the Small Kingdoms, and most likely NOT the Maer. (Could be, if the Maer is also king of one of the Small Kingdoms, but that seems improbable.) Vashet seems to know enough about the 'barbarians' to have known who the Maer was, and thus refer to him as such.
Ryan Murray
494. TheYllest
@ Scriv #2 and Sahirioth

I may be forgetting something, but does the text ever explicitly say that Kvothe will kill a Poet-King? Or are we just assuming because he is the presumed kingkiller and Caesura (break in an Eld-Vintic line) is called poet-killer by Aaron? I have a feeling he is going to be doing quite a bit of killing in D3: a king, an Angel, presumably a poet, a Chandrian, whatever he did in Imre to break the cobblestones beyond repair. Any of these could be overlapping, or they could all be separate incidents. Although I highly doubt he ends up killing Vashet's poet-king as the King killed will most likely have to be Vintish, not of the Small Kingdoms.

Also, I believe the Jakis family colors include purple, not blue and white, but could be wrong about this.
thistle pong
495. thistlepong
The Yllest@494
I may be forgetting something, but does the text ever explicitly say that Kvothe will kill a Poet-King?
No. We assume he kills a king because the series is The Kingkiller Chronicle. There's been some pushback against even that by some of our diehard skeptics, but the other possible titles after they had to drop A Song of Flame and Thunder were "Assassin" and "Regicide."

Jo posted part of my theory about who the king killed would be in Summary 17. Alchemically, a king pretty much has to die. And all the signs, they symbolic ones anyway, point to Roderic Calanthis.

Vashet's Poet-King provides an easy enclitic bridge between Kingkiller and Kaysera, the Poet-Killer. This intuitive leap has been used as the main support for a number of otherwise odd theories. Kvothe killed more than a score of people in WMF. A poet and a king are frankly more likely than a concatenation.
Also, I believe the Jakis family colors include purple, not blue and white, but could be wrong about this.
There's no confirmation one way or the other on the Jakis colors, only that he looks good in all of them. I think the purple comes from this scene: his date with Denna where Kvothe narrowly avoids Cyrano's fate:
Lamplight glittered on the gold brocade of his jacket, and his gloves were dyed the same dark, royal purple as his boots. The color should have looked garish on him, but it didn’t.
This should also be one of the potential clues that Ambrose could ascend to a throne. The rebels in the frame have to be following someone. Jakis could be that king, just not the killed one.

ed: formatting
Carl Banks
496. robocarp
As far as I know, nothing at all (definitive, allusions, or anything else) is said about the killed king in the frame story, other than the mere implication that there is one, due to Kvothe having the epithet Kingkiller. Kote as narrator never alludes to a king he killed later on (he never says anything like "oh, by the way, the Maer happens to the king who I later killed which is why I am called Kingkiller, cool huh?").

Therefore, speculation on who the killed king really relies on metaevidence. We know PR is a writer, we know writers like to use devices like foreshadowing (because they make interesting stories), so we're trying to figure out which person PR might be foreshadowing as the killed king.

To me, the fact that flits are also called calanthis is, by itself, reason enought to suspect it's Roderic Calanthis. And this is only one of several strong foreshadows that thistlepong collected a while back.

However, we also know that writers sometimes like to foreshadow things and then do something else, as a way to heighten surprise. Especially when the foreshadowing is relatively obvious (as in this case), it might be red herring. (A lot of people think this might be the case for the Laurian = Netalia Lockless theory.)

Aside thought: Kote doesn't appear to have sides in the current war, but if the war did turn out to be Alveron (Penitent King) vs Jakis (rebels), it be interesting that Kote isn't aligned against the rebels.
John Graham
497. JohnPoint
Robocarp @496: well said.

As one of the partial "diehard skeptics" on this, here is my take:

1) I think it is very likely that Roderic Calanthis will indeed be killed, primarily due to thistlepong's really good literary and alchemical investigations

2) I think that Kvothe will be blamed for the killing, and will likely blame himself, whether or not he directly did the killing itself

3) I'm less certain about whether or not Kvothe actually does the act or not. (Off the top of my head, I'd say it's 60:40 that he does.)

My reasons for maintaining a bit of skepticism relate to what we have seen in the first two books, primarily related to Kvothe's overdeveloped sense of guilt/responsibility. A good instance of this is the draccus/Trebon incident. Kvothe takes responsibility for burning down Trebon, when reality was more complicated. Yes, he drugged the draccus. Yes, he lured it to the hill where it was able to see the harvest festival. So he definitely is partially responsible. But I would hesitate to say that he actually or directly burned down Trebon, as he himself claims.

We see this same pattern repeatedly throughout the series. Thus, I wouldn't be surprised if Kvothe doesn't actually (directly) kill the king, but instead somehow set things into motion and/or was blamed for the action in the end, regardless or true culpability or motives.

As for the name of the series, well, that's easy to explain. Kvothe is viewed by the general populace as a king-killer, and this story chronicles the events that lead up to his earning the nickname. Whether he actually kills a king or not is more or less beside the point. The same argument could have been made had the series been titled either "Assassin" or "Regicide".

So, will I be surprised if Kvothe actually kills a/the king? No. But I also won't be surprised if Kvothe doesn't kill a king. Either event could mesh well with the plot so far, and with Pat's tendancies as a writer.
Steven Halter
498. stevenhalter
JohnPoint@497:That pretty much capture's my thoughts on this point.
Kvothe the GuyWhoSetEventsInMotionThatContributedToAKingDying
doesn't quite have the ring of Kvothe the Kingkiller but could very well turn out as more accurate like you say.
thistle pong
499. thistlepong
“If you talk of them, they come for you.”
Since JohnPoint put "diehard skeptics" in scare quotes, I wanna make sure we're all friends here. I agree that it's possible Kvothe Kingkiller earned the name, bought it and paid for it, without actually ending the life of a monarch. As robocarp alluded, though, I'm loathe to relinquish some skeptical opinions.

On the other hand, I do think it's fair to say that Kvothe killing a king is nearly as popular an opinion as Laurian being Netalia. So, in the broadest sense of we, we think that. And we think that because of the title and because of Kvothe's introductory boast.

What keeps me on the he-actually-puts-Roderic-to-the-sword side of the argument most days is that I can't divine any meaningful consequence of him not doing so. If he's just blamed for it and takes responsiblility, who benefits? If he set a series of events in motion that lead to a death, what does that mean? Trebon is still ravaged.

Don't get me wrong, I can totally see it. It would tie nicely with Lorren's, “I care nothing for your intentions, E’lir Kvothe, deceived or otherwise. All that matters is the reality of your actions. Your hand held the fire. Yours is the blame. That is the lesson all adults must learn.” I just don't know what would motivate him to call it a day.

ed: There are a bunch of possibilities, of course. Ambrose does it and Kvothe takes the blame. Nice and round and addresses robocarp's aside. Denna does it and Kvothe loves her so much he takes the blame to save her, or something. He takes the blame in order to publicize his own faked death 'cause he's made a lot of powerful enemies and is genuinely afraid.

What I mean by I can't see it is that I haven't seen anything much in the story gives a reason for the epithet to be false, or for any particular scenario around that falsehood to be true.
500. Bliue Elodin
I was wondering: What is it about Lanre's story that makes Ben think it's a good illustration of what he wants to explain to Kvothe after the incident with the hawk? There doesn't seem to be folly or the thoughtlessness of a clever person in what we are told about Lanre's behaviour by Skarpi. But Ben (who hasn't heard Arliden's song) seems to know a version of Lanre's story that is more in line with Skarpi's than with Denna's in that Lanre must have done something that had terrible consequences in that version of the story.
John Graham
501. JohnPoint
It's all good, thistle, I didn't mean those as scare quotes, more as "That's an amusing way of putting it, which I'll partially own to being" quotes. And as "I'm not entirely a diehard skeptic on this one, since I could easily see either possibility happening, but I do have a bit of that tendancy" quotes. Tone and the internet, eh? Should have used Ademic hand signals ::tentatively abashed::

I definitely agree that Kvothe-directly-killing-a-king is a reasonable assumption to make, for all the reasons that have been discussed before. I just see a number of ways that Pat could flip that assumption on its end, and it seems to me like that's the kind of thing that he really enjoys doing (as, for example, he does in The Princess and Mr. Whiffle). As to what it means or why he accepts the blame, well, that depends on how events play out. Maybe he does feel responsible. Maybe he is responsible (even if his hand didn't hold the fire, so to speak). Regardless, I don't think that he just took the blame -- that is, I think he was somewhere upstream in the flow of blame, if not directly the agent.
502. Blue Elodin
Sorry for the long quote, but the following part of Samuel Taylor Coleridges' poem "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" reminded me of Lanre :

How long in that same fit I lay,
I have not to declare;
But ere my living life returned,
I heard and in my soul discerned
Two voices in the air

"Is it he?" quoth one, "Is this the man?
By him who died on cross,
With his cruel bow he laid full low
The harmless Albatross.

The spirit who bideth by himself
In the land of mist and snow,
He loved the bird that loved the man
Who shot him with his bow."

The other was a softer voice,
As soft as honey-dew:
Quoth he, "The man hath penance done,
And penance more will do."
503. RegicideFan
Expanding on thistlepong and Jo's comments on the red/gold butterfly representing the Calanthis king/family in the Cthaeh chapter; I made a quick list of butterfly deaths in that chapter and relate them to the line of succession (in chronological order of butterfly death; loose paraphrased quotes from that chapter included):

- Red/gold butterfly - Calanthis royal family colors
- Blue/black butterfly - Prince regents "No more red ones left. These are sweet." (Can't make connection to color just yet)
- Sapphire butterfly - Maer
" A pause. A blur. A slight disturbance of a dozen leaves" before killing the next. Maybe these leaves imply actual kings killed so far? If so, the 13th to be killed would be...
13. Unknown colored butterfly dies - Samista
14. Blue butterfly - Lackless (Aculeus and/or Meluan)
15. Purple butterfly - Baron Jakis ("out of spite" "willful ignorance")
"There was a pause, then another pair of purple wings went drifting to the ground" which would represent...
16. Purple butterfly - Ambrose (16th in line to throne per Sim)
17, 18, 19 (?). 3 green butterflies die "Fell at the same time like spinning leaves"

What do we think? Anything useful here? If it is, what is this 3 green ending? I would imagine one of those would be Kvothe since he's connected to the color green quite frequently... and I also can't imagine him surviving the 3rd book.
504. RegicideFan
I had comments in brackets that were removed in the above post. I wanted to stress that those "pauses" could represent the use of Caesura.
Ryan Murray
505. TheYllest

I'm glad you were brave enough to throw this out there. I did this same analysis but couldn't draw enough conclusions to put together a cohesive thought other than the red/gold and sapphire butterflies. The purple I also suspected to symbolize the Jakis family, however the description:
Why the purple one?
Pure spite. I envied its innocence, its lack of care. Too much sweetness cloys me. As does willful ignorance
It doesn't really seem to fit the idea I have for the Baron or Ambrose, so I dismissed it. Perhaps it is more fitting of Felurian...

My thoughts did not gravitate toward the Vintish royal succession, but rather focused on the deaths that would occur because of the Cthaeh's influence over Kvothe's future. I imagined who could possibly die in the upcoming installment and tried to piece together how that could work in the story, but I dropped it as hopeless when too much supposition was required.

The ones that stumped me the most were the three green at the end. There is nothing we have seen thus far that this could be describing, but I imagine it could be Kvothe, but the other two? Too much perhaps-but-perhaps-not info there to process without more info, but I still love thinking about it. I would love to hear other people's thoughts on this, as I was mildly obesessd with interpreting this scene for awhile.
Jeremy Raiz
506. Jezdynamite
Helping out with conjecture from RegicideFan and TheYllest's recent posts:

If you are looking for people associated with the colour "green", Baron Greyfallow's colours are "green and grey". Would that help?

Kvothe would have worn those colours, the Baron too, as well as Kvothe's troupe.
Ryan Murray
507. TheYllest
@506, 503

I thought of his family and Greyfallow's colors as well, but because of my supposition that the wings represent deaths caused by the Cthaeh's influence over Kvothe I had to discount them as they occurred too early in Kvothe's story. That also assumes my initial supposition is correct, but that could be off as well.

My thought is the synchronicity of the falling leaves is key, indicating to me that the three butterflies represent three individuals who die at once or just as likely represent one person to whom three is significant. Given Kvothe's propensity to be associated with the color green (troupe's colors, eyes, etc), I suspect that at some point in the frame he reassumes his true name (Kvothe/Maedre), which means three things: fire, thunder, and broken tree, and is killed as the final piece of the Cthaeh's influence over him.
Steven Halter
508. stevenhalter
I think it is likely that there is some significance in the colors of the butterflies. I think it probably is more general than just the succession. The Cthaeh is playing its very own grand game and all of the worlds are its stage.
Since it is talking to Kvothe, it is likely that the killings have something to do with Kvothe and things that will happen after their little chat. Wether each butterfly represents a specific event/person or a range of things is pretty hard to determine at this point.
509. AaronLikesKKC
Completely off current topic, but in following this blog and doing rereads myself, I feel that that king Kvothe is responsible for killing is still the Maer. In the beginning of NOTW, one of Kvothes claim to fame is counseling kings - so far the only "potential" king he could have counseled would have been the Maer. I believe he becomes king in D3 is some how killed directly or indirectly by Kvothe.
Steven Halter
510. stevenhalter
Here's something fun and interesting. A commentor on my blog noticed that if you take the trifoil coordinates that Brandeur quizzes Kvothe with, lay them out and overlay them on a periodic table then the vectors corresponding to the points roughly (depending a bit on the size of the element cells in the table) point to the stated elements if the origin of the grid is paladium.
You can see an example of the grid overlayed on the 4C map in speculative summary 11: Te Rhintae and the flipped grid from Greyhood at post 186 in that same summary.
Bruce Wilson
511. Aesculapius
@507 TheYllest

Yes, I'm inclined to agree that the chronicity of the three green butterflies falling together could well suggest the tripartite meaning of Maedre.

Note also the oblique reference in the description of the butterflies' demise to the sleeping mind state that Kvothe calls Spinning Leaf. To me, this is also highly suggestive of a connection with, or maybe even a direct reference to Kvothe.
thistle pong
512. thistlepong
Pat figured out a huge piece of the Four Corners today.


He probably could've just asked y'all.
513. dozier
@472 a lot of your theory is what i've been thinking but i have no real evidence for any of it. i just got the impression from re-reading that there's a third enemy that's still unnamed, and that selitos and iax began on the same side.

my other intuitive impression is that iax didn't just steal the moon to make him happy, but that the moon is some how linked to power. i don't know much about astronomy or different elements but i'm kind of toying with question of what exactly the moon is. i'd always assumed it'd be the same moon as ours but what if it were comprised mainly of iron or copper? or possibly another metal that would somehow affect copper if it were missing? i don't know if that'd even be possible but it seemed like an interesting thing to think about.
514. Marco.
However, we also know that writers sometimes like to foreshadow things and then do something else, as a way to heighten surprise. Especially when the foreshadowing is relatively obvious (as in this case), it might be red herring. (A lot of people think this might be the case for the Laurian = Netalia Lockless theory.)


I think the odds of red herring are low. At the Chicago reading, Pat went through the Princess book twice - first as a casual reader, and then to point out the things that everyone missed that were hidden in plain sight. I think he delights in this, and I'd be surprised if this easter egg turned out to be a fake.
Carl Banks
515. robocarp
Marco @ 514

I would have to disagree: your story indeed shows that PR likes to follow through with the hints and clues he's added, it doesn't imply he always does it.

In general I'd argue that foreshadowing doesn't work unless there's uncertainty, and writing that follows through with everything that looks like foreshadowing is not done well. To a lesser extent this is true for direct evidence clues as well.

PR has already given us at least a couple red herrings. Kote has an interlude talking about how to incorporate The Woman into the story; then we meet several women (Devi, Auri, a few others in the Eolian) before getting to the one he presumably means (Denna), who we'd already met. After reading NotW, one would be foolish to suggest that Master Ash wasn't Cinder, or at least a Chandrian. However, in WMF we start seeing clues that it could be this Bredon guy. Except in the unlikely case that Bredon and Cinder are the same person, one of those sets of clues is a red herring. And if they are the same person, then all the stuff about the Chandian being identified by their signs is a red herring.
516. Marco.
Hi Jo,

laziness inspired request: if you still lurk here and notice this, could you start a "speculative summary 21"? We don't need any new content, it would just help us not have to scroll through as much.

517. tucksnz
This may have been hashed over hundreds of times. I apologise if this is the case.

However without re-reading through everything that has been posted;

Do you think that the Thrice locked box in Kvothe's room can be unlocked by music? Seems to me the one thing missing so far from the Inn and the present tense of the story is music.
jum bles
518. jumbles
Well I think it's not mere coincidence that his lute case in Wise Man's Fear chapter 6 has three locks; one being iron, and another brass (which contains copper). The third lock on his lute case is silver; I don't know the significance of that.
519. -Red-
Hi folks,

I will echo most new posters’ sentiments that the Rothfuss Rereead has been a huge pleasure and informative experience for me. I’ve enjoyed following all of the well-argued and detailed theories, but this is a more miscellaneous posts to bring up some book passages I’d been mulling over, to see if you all had some ideas. I haven’t come across discussions of these in prior posts, but my reading has been by no means comprehensive, so apologies for any duplicative comments:

1. NOTW: When Kvothe tries to awaken Denna from her denner-induced sleep, she murmers the word/name “Moteth.” Any ideas what/who this might signify?

2. Rest are all WMF: When Aaron is asked what he knows of Kvothe, he says, “He knew all sorts of secret magics...He knew six words he could whisper in a horse’s ear that would make it run a hundred miles. He could turn iron into gold and catch lightning in a quart jar to save it for later. He knew a song that would open any lock, and he could stave in a strong oak door with just one hand…” We can tie many of these to portions of the book. The horse references his trip to Trebon, catching lightning could refer to his Taborlin-esque defense when he was jumped in the alley, staving in the door recalls his breaking into Ambrose’s rooms during the mommet fire. What could the song be in reference to? Lots of locks from which to choose. Perhaps also an allusion to the Singers? It seems to lend weight to tucksnz @ 517's idea.

3. When Kvothe tries to think through the effects of the plumb bob, he experiences vertigo and is scared of his grasp of physical reality (“I can’t eat a stone, can I?”). Sim says, “I wish I knew what *that* signified,” and Fela responds, “I have a fair idea.” Is this referencing the power of Kvothe’s magical abilities, that he can fight the drug? Or something else?

4. Kvothe receives a letter from Denna when she departs Imre for Yll, and it is sealed with an image of “a stag rampant standing before a barrel and a harp.” Has anyone tried unpacking that imagery? It seems unnecessarily specific to not be significant.

5. When Bredon gives Kvothe his three rings, he says, “Please...I must insist. These are yours without obligation, let, or lien. A freely given gift.” This mirrors Bast’s language when he presents Chronicler with the holly wreath in the frame. Further evidence that Bredon is of the Fae/Chandrian? Along similar lines, when Kvothe shows Bredon Stapes’ bone ring, he says, “It’s not a part of games the gentry play, and not the sort of ring you should display...If I were you, I’d tuck it safe away.” (Kvothe keeps it going in his response - “You’ve been such help...I wish I could repay-.”) These rhyming sentences reminded me of Felurian and Kvothe discussing the story of the moon - more Fae-esque characteristics.

I’d love to hear your thoughts/theories.
520. Vorbis
@-Red- Great questions! The only one I have a theory on is 3, Kvothe's inability to take advantage of Fela. He says he could no more do so than he could eat a stone, and Sim wonder's what it signifies. I assume it relates back to Kvothe's own being raped in Tarbean.
jum bles
521. jumbles
Red @519:

1. I don't think we can figure that one out yet.
3. I agree with Vorbis. I think Sim's comment was more on Kvothe's inability to take advantage of Fela.
4. I don't think we can figure this one out yet.
5. I like this. I didn't notice this instance of rhyming before. Besides Felurian, it also reminds me of Kvothe and Denna rhyming together sometimes. I'll also point out that in one of the videos for the Name of the Wind playing cards Kickstarter, Pat said that he borrowed from Shakespeare in that important characters will speak in verse, and unimportant ones won't. I'd link the video, but Albino Dragon seems to have switched all of their videos to private so we can't watch them.
523. Blue Elodin
@ 519

The barrel makes me think of Bredon beer.
524. Blue Elodin
Regading Kvothe's "I can' eat a stone, can I?": Could there be a connection to Fela's affinity to stone (the name of which she is going to find) as well?
525. ScottyP
Hi everyone,

I'm a new poster to this blog and have thoroughly enjoyed reading these threads over the last 2 weeks.

I've just finished my 7th listening (audio book) to the KKC and have some theories I thought about that have been reflected in these posts.

However I first have to say Sorry as I don't have my books on me for direct quotations so you'll have to deal with my poorly referenced concepts.

I'm a big fan of the Bast as K's son to Felurian. The passing comment K makes to Bast, when Bast exclaims K shouldn't be using the Names of the Chandrian in WMF, of "Who taught you your naming law?".

Being that Bast is of the Fae and the inherit knowledge he has access to, why would he need a mortal like K to teach him is Naming Law after having lived for such a long time?? Perhaps K has already been back to the Fae and met his son when Bast was young, taught him some stuff and left. Now Bast has come back into the 4C world 150 years later (in 4C years), but how does the 4C timeline of years relate to the years or time spent in the realm of the Fae.

This next part is one of my favourite theories:

Is it possible to consciously age ones self in the Fae??

When K leaves Felurian's den only a short amount of time has passed, and when he initially runs for her K says something along the lines of "See you in 3 days at the (inn they were going to)". . . Maybe this suggests that because K believed that he would return in this small amount of time that it became true. Perhaps Bast "aged" himself through a similar process. . . .

OK one last thing that has recently popped up that I gleamed form my last listen is that of D possibly not being the love of his life. . . In NW when he's introducing the character there are a few possibilities that could have been eluded to (eg. Fela, Devi, Mola etc.). . . However after my most recent listening I think I've narrowed the 2 possibilities for K's lady love as being D and Auri. . .

The reason for me doubting D as the lady love is that we had already met her on the way to the University, so why was she waiting in the wings for her introduction, when she has already been introduced?

Also K mentions before introducing the lady love that he didn't want to scare away the thought of her, and both D and Auri have this attribute of being scared away easily. . .

Finally one of words used to directly describe the lady love when K is telling Chronicler directly what to write is Lovely. . . Which is a word that has been used to describe both D and Auri. . . .

One separate idea that I've had is that we haven't met any Amyr is K's life yet. Felurian says that there were never any human Amyr, and my theory is that the people everyone suspects as Amyr are actually human agents/spys working for a particular Amyr.

This is why Lorren knows of Arliden the bard, they are both agents for the Amyr. . . I'm convinced that Arliden was an agent for the Amyr after the comment of "for the greater good" when K had a ripped shirt. This to me suggests that Arliden possibly used to engaging with one of the Amyr (as an agent) and having to accept actions that he has to take towards the greater good. . .

There are many other theories which I have enjoyed thoroughly however I don't really want to bore everyone too much with my repetitious ways. . . .

I also have some ideas on Old Holly but will wait to contribute on a separate post. . . . .

**All just pure speculation, no need to hurt my feelings too much**
Carl Banks
526. robocarp
Question 4, concern the stag on the seal on Denna's letter.

We'll throw out the obvious implication (that Denna's patron is Harry Potter) and just think about hypotheticals.

I did some keyword searches on my Kindle for various words related to deer (deer, stag, hart, fawn). Mostly, PR uses words relating to deer in similes for being startled. However, there are a couple interesting usages.
1. Kvothe describes both Denna and all her suitors in terms of deer: Denna was like a wild hind (untamable), men around her are like stags in rut.
2. There is a inn in Imre called the White Hart.
3. One of Felurian's kama sutra positions is called "a hushed hart".
4. Kote imagines Felurian luring a hart to her glade and killing it with elfin efficiency when trying to figure out where the food came from.
5. And, finally, there are Bast's deer hooves.

None of these shed any light on who's seal it might be, however. My guess is that this is a Checkov's detail: it is unimportant now, but in Book 3 we'll meet someone with those motifs and know who Denna's patron is.
Jeremy Raiz
527. Jezdynamite
My speculative guess (asked in the Rothfuss Admissions questions):

"Does Baron Greyfallow’s family name originate from a bird (a grey fallow), a deer (also a grey fallow), or perhaps the place called Fallows (where red and white wine is made/from)?"

And Pat gave the answer: Good question.

My thoughts in asking the question were:
A "stag" corresponds to a grey fallow deer.
A "barrel" correlates to the making of red/white wine which both carry the moniker of "Fallows".

On a side note: Fallows is the town where young Kvothe heard a Lady Lackless rhyme twice (which his mum chastised him for reciting).
528. Marco.

I wonder if it will identify the patron. If he and Denna are so concerned about protecting his identity, it seems odd that he would allow her to use his calling card like that.

I do agree with both you and the OP though - it seems too specific not to be important.
thistle pong
529. thistlepong
Pat's doing another Reddit AMA today:
Steven Halter
530. stevenhalter
And now for something completely different:

As a: $150,000 Worldbuilders stretch goal, Mary Robinette Kowal has
written some Kvothe fan fiction erotica, titled "The Wind Comes".
You can find it at:

I'll just say, Oh my.
Ryan Murray
531. TheYllest
@530 stevenhalter
I came here to post exactly the same thing you did, but you beat me by about half an hour. I'm not much for erotica, but being very much a fan of KKC, I had to read it. It is listed as non-canonical but Rothfuss definitely had say in it. I will reiterate your statement of "Oh my".
John Graham
532. JohnPoint
"Oh my" is ... the best I can articulate on the subject right now....

Edit to add: on a more topical subject, re Jumbles @521 -- thanks for posting the comment about Pat having the important characters speak in rhyme. I've long suspected that rhyming was an indication of particularly important scenes, though I haven't yet gotten around to cataloging all of them to conduct an meta-analysis (perhaps that would be the subject of a group effort a la Dept of Imaginary Linguistics). It's good to hear that there is at least some truth to my suspicion.
533. BigVik
Of Namers and Shapers:

This is the main topic of this novel in my opinion, therefore clouded in some mystery and deliberately obfuscated by the author. Yet a lot of clues remain. Actually the story starts with a clue, when Kvothe jokingly goes to the beginning of things "In the beginning, as far as I know, the world was spun out of the nameless void by Aleph, who gave everything a name. Or, depending on the version of the tale, found the names all things already possessed.". Well, isn't that an exact description of shapers (gave names) and namers (found names)? I think that from this and other hints we can somewhat reconstruct the story of the early days. Naturally one assumption has to be made, and that is which partucular story of the beginning of the world you accept, the explicit creation (shapers) or implicit finding (namers)? My gut tells me that the truth is with the namers and from now on I'll assume that in the beginning Aleph became self-aware, first of his kind and then turned on to find names of other things thus becoming a first namer. This fits better I think with the general theme of the book about people/things waking up after being called or being told a story. It fits with Bast trying to draw Kvothe out of Kote by coaxing him to tell a story about his life.
In any case, Aleph saw the names of all things and started calling them out to awake them. I think this process is very similar to what we saw of naming in the book so far: when Kvothe calls on the wind or Fela on the stone, they don't shape it, they just read a small portion of wind's/stone's potential therefore materializing it. It's like saying "Wind can strike this man down to the ground" and that actually happening (somewhat like what Ben did). There's nothing "unnatural" about this, wind can do this, namer just reminded it to do it right here and now. Now I assume Aleph first drew out being similar to him, maybe Ruach, and whereas some saw him for what he was and accepted the namer's version of the beginning regarding him as primus inter pares, an early rift occured among them with some seeing that the very nature of the things could be changed and thinking that Aleph actually created everything, including them out of the nameless void. Those would be the shapers, they started not only drawing things out of themselves but actually changing their names to make them something different which started all the trouble. Names of real things are complex and impossible to master, whereas the shaped things were simpler but lacked that "secret fire" (to borrow from Tolkien). Again, references to shaping (name changing) as something inherently horrible are in existence to hint to this throughout the books. In the beginning namers and shapers had this as a philosophical difference, as in the end some of the things shapers shaped were admired by both sides (Felurian mentions some kind of fruit bearing tree), but at some point shapers starte messing with sentient beings and I think that's where things went downhill fast. Fae are most likely such shaped beings, firstly because they come in all shapes and forms unlike humans who are pretty uniform -- probably signifying multiple attempts to improve upon the basic human design; secondly because Kvothe himself says somewhere how Fae look like humans like water looks like alcohol, but their essence is different, again implying that the basic design was altered for whatever purpose. I think at this point namers and possibly Aleph himself order shapers to clear out, which they do by attempting to create the world of their own. Unfortunately for them, that world is apparently not very successful, something is missing. Secret fire, life, love, way to enforce the passage of time necessary for life... call it what you will, but it obviously has something to do with the Moon. In order for their world to work, the most powerful among the shapers, incidentally one of the most powerful namer as well (Iax), decides to transfer the Moon to shaper's world. As this would cause untold damage to the existing world namers strenuously object leading to the creation war.
I tend to believe that this war is still going on. Even when Lanre killed off the black beast, the enemy was merely put behind the doors of stone. The later fall of Lanre has probably been precipitated by him somehow taking upon at least a good portion of Iax's essence (becoming a namer, etc), thereby continuing the war with the goal of destroying the world with possible consequence of only the shaper's world remaining and being fixed somehow by capturing the Moon for itself whole. Chandrian I believe are people whose names got changed (shaped) by Iax/Lanre/Haliax/Alaxel. Therefore they are less then men yet more then men.
Well, there you have it, my little pocket cosmology. I'd love to hear the opinions and add-ons.
thistle pong
534. thistlepong
Would you consider sapcing between paragraphs?
Ryan Murray
535. TheYllest
@533 BigVik

While much of what you propose is difficult to confirm or refute, I agree with your initial statement that the Creation War is the underlying plot of the series, continuing to drive events of the current day. And that the world likely began with Aleph (in some form or fashion), and the war began with Iax trying to pull the moon into the Fae.

The largest issue I have with this theory is that you have left out a huge player: the Cthaeh. Where does it fall into this discussion? Who is it, and did it actively participate in the Creation War? We are told it had influence over at least Iax and Lanre at some point.

You also seem to glaze over the whole idea of Lanre turning and becoming Haliax. We know he fought for the empire initially, but what happened after Drossen Tor is still largely up for debate. We don't even really know which side (namers vs. shapers) the empire was on, or if it even mattered.

I really like your idea of the Chandrian having been people whose names have been changed. I have proposed the theory before that they were all changed by the Cthaeh (Iax trapped behind the doors of stone and interacting with the world through the Rhinna tree), and that they have been changed in such a way that their purpose is to destroy the 4C realm so that the moon can only exist in the Fae sky (effectively winning the war).

Let me know what you think of my concerns. I'd love to hear what you have to say. Also this -> @534.
thistle pong
536. thistlepong
I know at least a couple of you are curious about the length of days in the 4c. Pat gave an answer on the AMA that I'll link and format when I can, but for now:
I skipped this question last night because it was going to require a longer answer, and I didn't want to get bogged down early on in the Q&A.

Even now, I hesitate to try to give some sort of hard, definitive answer on this question. But here are a few statements that might be informative/interesting/helpful.

1. It is not unreasonable to think that a day in the four corners is a different length than ours.

Everything in the frame story shouldn't be included in the wordcount, obviously.

2. Kvothe would probably tell his story much more quickly than a narrator would read it.

3. I know this last one to be true because I know the prologue of the book very well, so when I read it out loud, I tend to go about 50% faster than the narrator of the audio book.

Anyone who has ever listened to an audiobook on 1.5 speed knows what I'm talking about. The story doesn't sound very different at all. The compression they use just trims out the empty pauses between words and sentences....
Steven Halter
537. stevenhalter
In the Reddit I see:
I've got a few things that will be happening before doors of stone:
A novella (about 22,000 words) that centers around Bast. It's coming out in the Rouges anthology later this year.
I'm also working on another novella centering around Auri. I meant for it to be a short story, but it became a lot more than that, and right now it's creeping up on 25,000 words.
A short novel (short for me) set in Modeg. It tells the origin stories of one of the other legendary figures in my world: Laniel young-again. (That's probably going to be about 100-120 thousand words or so.)
thistle pong
538. thistlepong
Further information pertinent to stevenhalter@537
A novella (about 22,000 words) that centers around Bast. It's coming out in the Rouges anthology later this year.
See also: @489

"The Lightning Tree," a Bast novella, in Rogues (GRRM & Dozois ed.)
September 2014

iirc it was started around the same time as the Laniel novel(la - at the time).
I'm also working on another novella centering around Auri. I meant for it to be a short story, but it became a lot more than that, and right now it's creeping up on 25,000 words.
This is new. It's also probably the source of the Facebook post, "Auri knew that she had seven days." So, probably third person.

He's owed Subterannean Press a novella since the first or second Worldbuilders. Maybe this is... that? Of course, the Laniel book started at around 25-30k, too.
A short novel (short for me) set in Modeg. It tells the origin stories of one of the other legendary figures in my world: Laniel young-again. (That's probably going to be about 100-120 thousand words or so.)
This is the one Marco posted about. It's still not done, apparently. And has grown since he first outed it as a novel from 90k to maybe 120k. If he finishes it soon we could see it by next year. It's in third person.

DrFood actually posted about it here back in 2011 (RR-WMF 2:30)*, close to a year after he started writing it:
a woman who decides to go out and see the world *after* marrying and raising her kids. He's playing against the idea that any female heroine is either the plucky tomboy type or inspired by a need to protect her children.
*Rothfuss Reread - The Wise Man's Fear Part 2: Post #30
**since links tend to get eaten I'm just gonna mark Tor posts like that
539. BigVik
@534 -- will do

@535 -- I don't think there's any smoking gun type definitive proof for anything I wrote, but I don't think there's anything working against it either and I like that. I think PR created such rich world that he didn't really leave any intentional clues (apart from some Easter eggs like Arlinden's Lot less rhyme) -- the world itself, when described, gives us clues but ptherwise it's perfectly normal to its inhabitants.

Regarding Haliax I may not have explained myself clearly. What I think happened is that Lanre went to look for the way to bring Lyra back from behind the Door of Death. He was probably told that this was a bad idea, but nevertheless went to seek advice from Cthaeh. Cthaeh probably reffered him to Iax. Why Iax? Well, obviously Iax can't be really killed, he had to be set behind the Door of Stone. Therefore he'd know a thing or two about cheating death (not to mention Fae obviously being immortal of sorts, and if my theory is corect they have been renamed or changed to become that way). This may have something to do with the nature of those original Ruach woken up by Aleph -- they are obviously all immortal in some form, maybe their state of wakefullness allows them to pass back and forth between the Doors (except the stone one, which is a mystery to me -- other doors we read about are Sleep, Insanity and Death, ideas not materials, so either Stone represents one of the three, or something entirely different).

Anyway, Lanre finds the Door (Valaritas????) and figures out how to open it (uh-oh! Foreshadowing anyone? Especially since Kvothe has been droping hints of his story being somewhat like Lanre's). Sits down for a chat with Iax, who in his "benevolence" changes Lanre's name transfering a lot of his own power onto him thus making him into Haliax, a powerful namer/shaper who can't be held by any Door. I think the evidence for this is pretty straightforward, the abilities that Lanre gets are the ones Iax had himself and his physical transformation into the likeness of the beast he slain is a hint as well.

Naturally, Lanre's human nature doesn't jive well with the godlike nature of Iax -- especially when he finds out that for whatever reason he can't call back Lyra the way she called him back. Now he wants to set himself behind those Doors but he can't so he turns into what his name actually means "Hal-Iax" -- The Salt of Iax. "The salt to kill the bitter weeds" as Haliax himself says (or something like that). Mind you, I don't suggest that Haliax does Iaxes' bidding, I think that he wants the world to end for himself to find peace, still his goal then coincides with Iaxes'. This theme sort of repeats itself with Cinder, the "wayward tool" if you will.

So he decides to kill the world, goes around renaming people to create his Chandrian -- tools in his hand as he calls them. Again, hints of this renaming are subtle, like when he calls Ferula instead of Ferule, to which Cinder goes all limp and scared, meaning that slight change in hw something is said may change its nature. I wonder what is the meaning of Adem stories regarding one Chandrian that left the service of Haliax. Who was that? The last common ancestor of Adem (their potential parthenogenetic way of reproduction hints on them not being entirely human but potentially "renamed" somehow; Lethani seems like a story of ex-convicts finding religion)? Selitos?

As for Cthaeh... aaaah, I really don't know! It's one of those characters that is so compelling yet somehow don't fit anywhere. I suggested elsewhere that his name is similar to Cthulhu as CTH combination doesn't otherwise exist in English language. Cthulhu is the Old God, forzen in sleep in some temple deep under the sea, but it still sort of communicates with the world above through mental projections. As PR lists Lovecraft as one of his favorite authors and says that research in old and dead religions had something to do with 4C world, I'm tempted to speculate that Cthaeh is some sort of Cthulhu like Old God (BTW, Dagon is one of the Lovecraftian Old Gods too, not that I suggest that Maer's Dagon is anything but an ordinary mercenary, hehehe! As if not...). In other words some sort of entity that predates Aleph and the awoken state of the world. An entity that perhaps wants to return the world in that state of thermodynamic death by equilibrium. But this is total conjecture Cthaeh is just so different that I feel obliged to go outside of the box and speculate wildly.

As for the other questions, again I don't know. Maybe 4C is the created world and Fae is the real deal. The limited geographical nature of 4C may suggest a box-like world, closed in on all sides. As for the Empire, it could be just one of those story tools like "Once upon a time...", maybe there was no Empire. But then if there was, who was the Emperor? If we really want to get wild maybe that Emperor/King was Iax, the shaper who created the other world. King of his domain so to speak, until the realm went to war. Or maybe it was Cyphus, who was somehow recruited by Haliax? What more powerful traitor then the King himslef to bring down the kingdom? I don't know, I'm just rambling now...
Carl Banks
540. robocarp
BigVik @ 533

I have a couple comments.
Naturally one assumption has to be made, and that is which partucular story of the beginning of the world you accept, the explicit creation (shapers) or implicit finding (namers)?
There's a third assumption, however: neither being true. That's the impression I get when Chronicler chuckles at it. It seems like Aleph is this old guy whose story people co-opted for their own political purposes, but that doesn't mean one of the stories isn't true.
My gut tells me that the truth is with the namers and from now on I'll assume that in the beginning Aleph became self-aware, first of his kind and then turned on to find names of other things thus becoming a first namer.
Very well, I am not one to object to a gut feeling, especially as a hypothetical. However, the only time Aleph appears in the story as a character, he was doing what looks like Shaping magic, namely transforming some Ruach into angels. How would you reconcile this? I have a few ideas.
1. It wasn't actually shaping magic
2. It wasn't actually Aleph
3. Aleph is not opposed to Shaping for the greater good
4. Skarpi is making it up

I am starting to lean toward the idea that Knowing vs Shaping might have been mostly political posturing. One of the tricky things about reconstructing is that, with one exception, no one seems to limit themselves to merely Knowing. Including people known to be enemies.
541. BlueElodin
Sorry, if this has been discussed before: When Kvothe travels to Ademre with Tempi and is so exhausted that he doesn`t realize that they are speaking Ademic, he says "Sceopa teyas". From the context, this seems to mean something equivalent to "But I". I was wondering if there is a linguistic connection between" "Sceopa" and "Sceop" - the name of the old man in the story about Faeriniel. What makes me think of that, is this: It is stressed several times in the books that everyone knows at least one story - their own. And Bast points out to Chronicler that the story people are telling in their minds about themselves shapes (and I think this word might in more than one sense be appropriate here) what they are, their identity. Now, in the story about Faeriniel the old man has almost forgotten his name and has to be reminded that he does possess something he can give in return: his story. So, with regard to the "story/name/identity" aspect in the story of Faeriniel it would make sense if the old man's name means simply "I".

Concerning methodical problems, I don't think that we are not allowed to draw conclusions based on expressions from different languages. On the contrary, I think there is a clear hint that there is connection between the languages in the 4C-world which is similar to a family like the Indo-European languages: Kvothe's realization that the meaning of Tempi fits with a word in own language. Interestingly, variations of this very word had come up earlier in the story when Will wonders whether Kvothe's body might have lost its ability to regulate its temperature (and does not use the correct form of the word).
thistle pong
542. thistlepong

We've talked about sceop/sceopa, but I don't remember anyone suggesting his name meant "I." That's got all kinds of meta resonance.

Jo posted a new entry so we wouldn't have to scroll through hundreds of posts just to read a new comment. You might get more action there.

But while I have your attention, as far as we know the German edition the only one with an appendix and I was wondering if you could confirm or deny its contents?

Supposedly, it has the names of the days and months in order, but we don't know what else it contains. Holidays? Number of days in a year? Anything else?
543. Blue Elodin
The appendix of the German edition contains:

1. calendar (months and names in order and some explanations concerning their meaning),
2. currencies (units, hierarchy, shape of the Cealdic and Vintic coins)

If we suppose that "Sceop" is in some way a word whose meaning has something to do with identity, I find two things quite interesting:

1. Concerning its linguistic root in our languages someone already pointed out that "sceop" is a word in Old English. I would venture a guess that this is a cognate of the German "Schöpfer" (creator). Both words should also be related to "shape". This has resonances with the possible background of the Creation war: finding the names of things or giving the namens of things (also Elodin's shock when he thinks that Kvothe has meddled with his name).

2. Elodin states that it is important to remember that our names (identities) shape us and we shape our names. This would also fit well with the hypothesis that the word for identity ("sceop"?) has a semantic spectrum which includes shaping.

On a different topic: The title of the chapter "Lanre turned" with its possible alternative segmentation as "Lan returned". If "Lan" means "life" (in my opinion the month "Lan-nis" and "Lan-iel-Young-Again" suggest that it does) the title in its alternative segmentation would mean "life returned" which is what happens in the chapter: life is being returned to Lanre by Lyra, and also, in a way, to Kvothe by Skarpi's story.
thistle pong
544. thistlepong
Interesting. That's more than we knew it contained. Would you be willing to transcribe it or email me a photo?

Pat's on record telling a fan that sceop means storyteller, which lends some tangential support via Bast's storytelling-as-identity. He also published a eddaic-inspired poem in Clash of the Geeks called "The Lay of the Eastern King" where he used "sceop" in the Beowulf/official storyteller sense.

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