Welcome back to the Edgedancer reread, fellow Cosmere fans! Alice is celebrating her 30th wedding anniversary this week (Congratulations Alice!) so I’ll be tackling chapters 3 and 4 all by my lonesome this week.
First of all, a teensy note to answer some comments I saw on various social media platforms in regards to the previous reread post. Edgedancer is included in Arcanum Unbounded, Brandon Sanderson’s collection of Cosmere short stories and novellas. The novella will be released as a stand-alone book soon, but as of now, the only way to read it is within the pages of AU, which I highly recommend you pick up! Along with Edgedancer, you’ll find stories from all the different worlds connected to Roshar, from Scadrial (the Mistborn series) to Sel (Elantris).
Without further ado, let’s awesome our way into this week’s chapters!
In chapter 3, Hauka, a Yeddaw guard, is having a truly terrible day. First she encounters a merchant who she suspects has raided nearby fields in war-torn Emul and stolen their grain, then a young woman leads her for a merry chase around the guard station (the young woman being Lift, of course). She steals some of the guards’ pancakes, awesome’s her way around Hauka, and dumps the thief’s stolen cart of grain down into the poor part of town.
As we move into chapter 4, Lift takes a walk through town after her flirtation with anarchy, admiring clothes and architecture. Wyndle drops another hint (more like comes right out and SAYS) that he becomes a Shardblade but, again, Lift either doesn’t get it or ignores it. She reveals that she’d stolen a book from Hauka in the previous chapter, but according to Wyndle it doesn’t have anything important in it, just Hauka’s schedule. She notices a strange cremling on the wall, then tosses the “worthless” book over her shoulder. It hits a woman, a guard accuses her of assault, and we’re off to another chapter break!
Kadasixes and Stars
A strange little cremling crawled up the wall beside her. Smaller than most, it was black, with a thin carapace and a strip of fuzzy brown on its back that seemed almost spongy.
Lovely little gun on the mantlepiece, here. We’ll find out more about this creature later, but for now it’s worthwhile simply to note its presence, since it will come back into play.
“I suppose I need to get you to say the Words, don’t I? That’s my job? Oh, this is miserable.”
Poor Wyndle. A commenter last week pointed out that he reminds them of C-3PO, and I couldn’t agree more. He and Lift are like… if C-3PO had been paired up with Luna Lovegood instead of R2-D2.
Lift wasn’t supposed to be able to touch Wyndle.
“You must be stuck partially in the cognitive.”
This is a time when I wish I had Alice here! I’m admittedly not as studious of a Cosmere scholar as she, and tend to gravitate more towards character study than worldbuilding theorycrafting, but I’ll take a stab at this, since I feel as if it’s a BIG clue as to what’s happening with Lift, and why she’s so very different. If she were stuck partially in the Cognitive Realm (aka Shadesmar), it could explain quite a few things, like the fact that she doesn’t seem to age (like the spren), her odd way of metabolizing food into surgebinding instead of using stormlight for the same purpose, and – as mentioned here – why she can touch Wyndle. Is this a side effect of her trip to the Nightwatcher? If she asked not to change, is tying her to the Cognitive Realm the Nightwatcher’s way of doing so? Is this her boon… or her curse? Or both? Even more interesting to consider is whether or not she can affect change or interact directly with people or objects in the Cognitive Realm. If someone like Jasnah were there, could Lift interact with her? With the spren living there? Could she travel there herself, despite the fact that she shouldn’t have the power of an Elsecaller or Willshaper?
“Shoes are important to war,” Wyndle said, spitting out a splatter of vines on the wall about him – she wasn’t sure what that was supposed to mean.
This is just a Wyndle-ism that I find fascinating. In my head I almost see it like a paint splatter! Is this an expression of disgust at the thought of war?
“You are going to slam me into people, aren’t you? I’m going to be a weapon.”
The only way he could spell it out any clearer for her would be to give her twenty-seven 8×10 color glossy photos with circles and arrows.
It tickled, the way his main vine shot out other little vines.
Again, she’s not supposed to be able to touch him…. Curiouser and curiouser.
Journey before Pancakes
“Tuk-cake. You eat them for prosperity in the year to come.”
Sadly we don’t get any description of how the tuk-cake tastes, or what it might contain. I do rather like the purpose for them, though, as it follows a rich tradition of “lucky” foods in our own world. And who couldn’t use a little more prosperity? (Tin-foil hat time – perhaps this is a super-subtle indication that Lift will be coming into some good luck in the coming year?)
Friends and Strangers
“Did you know we were considering bonding this nice cobbler man instead of you?”
This is obviously a reference to Ym, from one of the interludes in Words of Radiance. (sobs) YM, WHY? I’ll never get over this. He was only in one chapter but he was so wonderful! I teared up when Darkness killed him. Aside from my everlasting grief, however… Upon reading this, I went back and re-read Ym’s interlude, because I wondered if his spren might not have been Wyndle. However, his spren was female, and appears as points of light. So can we surmise from this that the potential to be a Radiant isn’t locked to one order? That a potential Knight may attract spren of two (or more!) different types? Is it only because the two orders (Edgedancers and Truthwatchers) are adjacent on the chart of orders, and share a surge? It’s a fascinating concept, and if true, one that I hope might be explored in future installments.
Storming Mother of the World and Father of Storms Above
“It was snatched up quicker than a pretty whore in Bavland.”
Never change, Lift.
Wyndle: “Oh, blessed mother.”
This is a fascinating one. Is the mother he swears to the Nightwatcher? Or some other deity the spren worship?
Darkness & Co.
Nothing in this chapter. Perhaps the next!
They were in the home lands, and the need to cover up before Nun Raylisi – the enemy of their god – was minimal.
I love this touch of worldbuilding. And, naturally, I hone in on any and all mention of clothing like a hawk to prey.
“That god-king of the Tukari… there were all sorts of wild rumors about him.”
Well that’s an intriguing little snippet of information. I hope that we eventually learn more about him and these wild rumors, whatever they might be!
Well, that’s all for this week! Some interesting tidbits about the cognitive realm, Lift’s boon/curse, and those tricky little cremlings in this chapter, so feel free to don your tinfoil chapeaus in the comments section, and join Alice and I next week for more Lift shenanigans!
Lyndsey is a writer and cosplayer. She is currently working as an actress for the Connecticut Renaissance Faire, and feels as if she’s been hit by the Knight Bus after this week’s Labor Day weekend. You can see more of her work on her website or follow her musings on facebook or twitter.