Rhythm of War by Brandon Sanderson

Rhythm of War Reread: Chapter Seventy-Five

and

Heigh-ho heigh-ho, back to Shadesmar we go! This week, the reread finally hits the chapter where we return to Adolin and Shallan! I know different readers feel differently about the characters, but for myself, this feels like a refreshing break from the constant strain of the Urithiru-under-the-invasion vibe. Anyone else? Just me? Well, let’s go talk about it.

Reminder: We’ll be discussing spoilers for the entirety of the series up until now. If you haven’t read ALL of the published entries of The Stormlight Archive (this includes Edgedancer and Dawnshard as well as the entirety of Rhythm of War), best to wait to join us until you’re done.

In this week’s discussion we also mention some things from Warbreaker and Mistborn in the Cosmere Connections section, so if you haven’t read those, you’ll be confused at best and spoiled at worst.

Heralds: Vedeledev (Vedel). Edgedancers (Abrasion, Progression). Loving/Healing. Role: Healer.

Shalash (Ash), Herald of Beauty. Lightweavers (Illumination, Transformation). Creative/Honest. Role: Artist.

A: Well, now, that’s an interesting mix for this chapter. Shalash seems fairly obvious, given Shallan’s involvement, but why Vedel? There’s the bit about Godeke being allowed to heal Adolin, but that hardly seems enough. Is it about Adolin’s care for (and later “healing” of) Maya? Reflecting the way the honorspren watch over the deadeyes? How about Pattern’s effort to confront Shallan with the deadeye in hopes of healing both of them? I really don’t know.

P: I like the idea of Shallan and the deadeye that Pattern brings as the training for Vedel in this chapter. It feels right. Anyone else have any ideas?

Icon: Pattern, for a mostly-Shallan POV.

Epigraph:

There was a time when others would approach me for help with a problem. A time when I was decisive. Capable. Even authoritative.

A: “There was a time…” This implies that none of the rest is true any longer. Once we discover that he’s the “High Judge” that’s really worrisome; at the same time, most of what we’ve seen of him so far proves the truth of the implication. He’s helpless, irresolute… wishy-washy and useless, it seems. (Am I being too hard on him? Not saying it’s his fault; 7000 years would do it. But he is pretty useless these days, IMO.)

P: After thousands of years, I’m surprised he’s as together as he is, to be honest. He’s not Jezrien or Ishar level nutters, at least.

A: Oh, you remind me… I’ve had a theory about the Heralds, that they’ve been turning into inverse reflections of their traditional roles and divine attributes. Kalak was “the Maker” and his attributes were Resolute/Builder. While I can’t recall any case in which he’s actively destroying to oppose his former “making” (unlike Shalash, for example!), he’s also not actively building or making anything anymore. In any case, it’s pretty obvious that “resolute” has done an about-face.

Chapter Recap

WHO: Adolin, Shallan
WHEN: 1175.4.9.5-ish (This is the earliest possible date, if the timeline is correct in identifying 1175.4.7.5 as the date they arrived at Lasting Integrity. I personally think the dates ought to be placed farther apart, but I haven’t checked into any of the other time-limiting factors. I sure would like to see Karen’s official timeline!)
WHERE: Lasting Integrity—the honorspren fortress in Shadesmar

(Note: For the “when” notations, we are using this wonderful timeline provided by the folks at The 17th Shard.)

(My apologies that the circle is slightly off; I haven’t figured out how to edit this clever overlay map Lyndsey made. But you can see the proximities, so it serves its purpose.)

RECAP: Adolin looks out from the top of Lasting Integrity, filling the reader in on the setting, events of the past weeks, the equivalent of “weather” in Shadesmar, and the structure of the fortress. He also notes, and discusses with his jailer, the presence of a growing group of deadeye spren on the shore below them.

Meanwhile, Shallan is hiding deep in her own mind, making Veil and Radiant deal with the peculiarities of Lasting Integrity. Having set out to meet all the humans in the fortress in her search for Restares (and reviewing the ones she’s met for the reader), she prepares to entrap the last one, expecting him to be her elusive quarry. She’s distracted by Pattern, who tries to get Shallan to come out and talk. Radiant makes him confess that he’s lied to them, and he says he has someone she needs to meet—but Shallan emerges, furious, slamming Radiant and Veil away and refusing to speak with Pattern. Suddenly she realizes that the man she’s trying to see has emerged, and she moves into position, prepared not only to reveal him, but to kill him. Lucky for him, he turns out not to match the description at all. The newly decisive Shallan, again refusing to have a conversation with Pattern, gathers her things to go report to Mraize.

Spren and Shadesmar

During his weeks incarcerated in the fortress, he’d discovered that there were weather patterns in Shadesmar. They just weren’t the same type as in the Physical Realm.

A: First quick note, Adolin thinks of “weeks”—meaning at least two, but to me that phrasing always feels like it implies more than two. Not that it matters much, but… there it is.

His thoughts on the weather patterns are a nice little info-dump, which the geek in me finds fascinating, but there’s not a lot to say. Mostly it’s about how spren are affected, and I do wonder what the causes are. We saw in the past that there are Shadesmar effects from a physical-world highstorm, but what causes these other things?

P: Yeah, it made me wonder what the weather might be like in the physical realm when it’s a crystalline day in Shadesmar.

Lasting Integrity was enormous, several hundred feet tall. It was also hollow, and had no roof. Rectangular and resting on the small side, all four of its walls were perfectly sheer, without windows.

A: Without quoting all the rest of the descriptions (because you’ve just reread them all anyway, right?) I love the whole concept of this place. It seems so perfect that the honorspren would create their main fortress/city with permanent Lashings, redefining gravity for everyone, the way a Windrunner or Skybreaker can do temporarily. Adolin addresses it briefly, describing the odd sensation of stepping off the edge only to be caught by a new gravity field that makes the top of the wall “down” again. Shallan’s various identities give us more detail later, and… it all makes me chuckle. Yes, I grant that it would be really disorienting, but it’s still so cool.

P: Super disorienting! To approach what looks like a wall and then step onto it and then it’s the ground. So bizarre. It would make me dizzy!

A: I’m going to toss in here a quote from Radiant’s thoughts, later in the chapter, just because.

She passed one fountain that surged and fell in powerful spouts; if a spray got beyond about fifteen feet high, the water would suddenly break off the top and stream down toward the actual ground rather than back toward the wall plane.

A: The Lashings extend 15 feet, and then normal gravity takes over, and I love it. I have to wonder about the corners, though. I guess it depends on where you actually contact the surface? It’s very Escher.

P: It just weirds me out!

Lasting Integrity overlooked a sea of churning beads lit by the cold sun so they shimmered and sparkled, an entire ocean of captured stars. Huge swells washed through the bay and broke into crashing falls of tumbling beads.

It was mesmerizing, made all the more interesting by the lights that congregated and moved in the near distance. Tukar and the people who lived there, reflected in the Cognitive Realm.

A: Frighteningly enough, that “near distance” is right about where Ishar is doing his weird experiments on spren… just in case you needed to be thoroughly creeped out by the proximity. Other than that, it’s a beautiful image.

P: The ocean of beads is a beautiful image, as well as the lights representing the people of Tukar. I don’t want to think about Ishar and his monstrous experiments just yet. *shudder*

A: Fair point! Not something we can really enjoy thinking about.

Lifespren were larger here, though still small enough that he wouldn’t have been able to see them save for the bright green glow they gave off.

These lights blinked off and on, a behavior that seemed unique to this region of Shadesmar. Watching, Adolin could swear there was a coordination to their glows. They’d blink in rippling waves, synchronized. As if to a beat.

A: Rhythm of Cultivation, anyone? Although why it would be more pronounced in this area, I’m not quite sure. It’s interesting that, unlike most spren, lifespren don’t seem to look much different in Shadesmar than they do in the physical realm. They’re just bigger on this side. I wonder why…

P: Gotta be the rhythm of Cultivation, right?

The view wasn’t why he’d come, however. Not fully. Once he’d spent time drinking in the beauty, he scanned the nearby coast.

A: This is more about Adolin than about Shadesmar, but still: Isn’t it interesting, and very Adolin, that he first simply enjoys the beauty of the place before turning to business?

With some persuasion, the honorspren had allowed Godeke to come in, given him a little Stormlight, and let him heal Adolin’s wound.

A: “Business,” it would seem, is mostly a matter of looking out to see where his people are, and (as near as he can tell) that they’re okay. I recall being a little surprised—and greatly relieved—that the honorspren not only made the concession to allow Godeke to heal Adolin, but even supplied him with the Stormlight to do so. They even allow ongoing communication, which… well, why not, but then again… why? The honorspren seem to do a lot of things that don’t make sense to me, so I’m still a little surprised every time I read this. (It’s nice for those of us who worry about the rest of the party, though. They aren’t being completely ignored.)

P: Yeah, during that whole intro, I was wondering about his wound as it hadn’t been mentioned yet. And it really was big of the honorspren to let Godeke in to heal him, and especially to provide the Stormlight. They are an odd bunch, the honorspren.

A: On another tangent… remember all the debates over the cover art when it was first revealed? So yeah, that big tower is indeed Lasting Integrity. And also, yes, that’s Adolin with a real, ordinary sword, because as we know, he took a whole trunk full of them into Shadesmar with him. The chapter even contains a nice little reminder…

They’d traded—with his permission—a few of his swords to a passing caravan of Reachers for more food and water. Non-manifested weapons were worth a lot in Shadesmar. The Stump, Zu, and the rest of Adolin’s soldiers had left to bring word to his father.

A: Poor Adolin, trading off his favorite swords. But of course he did, because he’s responsible for these people.

P: I don’t know how anyone could not have realized it was Adolin on the cover with one of his regular swords, since Maya can’t manifest as a Blade in Shadesmar.

A: IIRC, there were people complaining that he shouldn’t have a sword in Shadesmar because Maya can’t sword there; they assumed it was a continuity error in the painting, rather than that it was just a normal sword. I recall making the argument that, after the previous venture, there’s no way Adolin would venture into Shadesmar again without an ordinary weapon or three. (Or a trunk full of them, as it turns out.)

Side tangent… By my calculations, if it takes roughly the same amount of time for the Stump, Zu, et al to return to Urithiru as it took to arrive, the returning party should take somewhere around six weeks to get back. That puts it somewhere about 1175.5.3.5 when they arrive, or about three weeks after the Tower is freed and the book ends. It’s good to have reason to think that Stump, Zu, et al weren’t trapped at the Oathgate when it was controlled by the Fused. On the other hand, if it’s really three weeks from the end of Rhythm of War, they’ll emerge into whatever is happening a week after the contest of champions. Yikes. ANYWAY. Back to this chapter.

It occurs to me that there’s no mention of Shallan’s team—Vathah, Ishnah, Beryl, and their spren—in this section. Is Adolin uninterested in them and doesn’t bother to think about where they are? That seems unlikely, Adolin being Adolin. Sanderson must have left them out on purpose, since the lack of mention was noted in the beta. They’re never mentioned again in this book… which kinda reminds me of Rlain in Oathbringer. I assume this means they’re Up To Something, and we’ll find out about it in the next book.

Gathering on the coast nearby was an unusual group of spren. […] there had to be two hundred of them. They stood on the coast all hours of the day, motionless, speechless. Deadeyes.

A: Oh, shivers. It’s a rather portentous setup in any case, but knowing what we know now… I can’t wait to see what happens with all of them in the next book, after the results of Adolin’s trial. (And we’d better find out!)

It’s also just a tad creepy, you know? Normally, you don’t see deadeyes gathering in Shadesmar unless there’s a battle, and even then there would only be a handful or so. This is hundreds of them, gathering of their own volition. Somehow. Adolin can even see when one disappears, summoned from this place to wherever its current holder might be. That’s really odd behavior, considering they mostly follow their physical bodies around as closely as they can. It’s fascinating to note that there are many, many more deadeyes gathered here than there are known Shardblades in the entire world. Granted that the Skybreakers have at least some that no one else knew about, and it’s possible that the Shin have some squirreled away, that doesn’t account for all of these spren. Either there are a lot of lost blades out there, buried or in the ocean or some such… or there are a lot of spren who had taken different forms before they all broke their bonds. So many questions.

Incidentally, Adolin’s guard is pretty sure they’re gathering because of the pending trial, and I expect he’s right, but I sure would like to know what they’re thinking.

P: I love how Adolin asked if anyone had asked them why they were there and his guard was just so incredulous. I’m really curious to see what might happen if Maya interacted with those deadeyes. Could she communicate with them? Would they respond? Would they then be able to talk to their bearers as Maya talked to Adolin to give him her name?

A: Yes, the assumptions of the honorspren are great set-up for what comes later. “Deadeyes can’t talk.” YET, dude. YET.

The fortress had quarters for deadeyes. Though Adolin had little love for these honorspren and their stubbornness, he had to admit there was honor in the way they treated fallen spren.

A: Yeah, I’m with Adolin here. I don’t have a lot of appreciation for the honorspren here and now, but it is good that they make so much effort to find and care for the deadeyes.

P: It is good that they care for the deadeyes as they do, and at least they don’t keep them locked up, they seem to be able to wander at will, hence Pattern’s friend that he wanted to introduce to Shallan.

Bruised and Broken

Veil was really starting to hate this fortress.

A: This opening bit of Shallan’s POV has its funny bits, for sure. (I’m using “Shallan’s POV” rather loosely here… It’s mostly Veil and Radiant until nearly the end of the chapter.) I’m always amused when tough, unflappable Veil is so thoroughly flapped by something like the weird construction of this fortress.

P: I so don’t blame her. I’d be creeped out, too.

The worst was how honorspren had no respect whatsoever for the laws of nature.

A: Bahahaha! Poor Veil. It’s just awful. No respect.

Shallan, Veil thought, you should be leading. You’d like the way this place looks.

Shallan did not respond. She huddled deep within, refusing to emerge. Ever since they’d discovered that Pattern had been lying to them, probably for years, she had become increasingly reclusive. Veil was able to coax her out now and then, but lately something… dangerous had come with her. Something they were calling Formless.

Veil wasn’t certain it was a new persona. If it wasn’t, would that be even worse?

A: And then it’s not funny anymore. We’ve been seeing hints at Formless since the beginning of the book, but it seems to be getting worse. Shallan won’t even come out, because… I’m not sure why, and IMO neither is she. Partly she’s afraid Formless will take over, and partly she’s afraid of what she has to face, and… maybe other things? Anyway, Shallan’s mind and emotions are a mess. Veil’s question is entirely valid; a new persona would indicate further fracturing, but at the same time, if Shallan is becoming Formless, that could be worse.

P: Yeah, Formless seriously creeps me out. The whole fractured personality really creeps me out, to be honest. As sad as it is and as much as it makes me feel for Shallan and all she’s been through and all she can’t face, it’s so worrisome to see her do this to herself. I know it’s her way to cope but she’s strong enough to handle the truth of her past.

Without direction from Shallan, and with the honorspren taking their time preparing their trial, Radiant and Veil had reached a compromise. They’d find Restares, the person Mraize had sent them to locate. They wouldn’t take any actions against him unless they could get Shallan to decide, but Radiant was perfectly willing to locate him.

A: Oh, right. Shallan’s mission from that snake, Mraize. So she’s spent their weeks here working on finding all the humans (17 of them!) in the fortress, trying to find Restares.

No, Veil thought. We’re avoiding the truth, Radiant. It means something else. Like Mraize told us. Those people came from another land. Another world.

A: As I got a chuckle out of bold Veil freaking out over the construction of the fortress, I’m also a bit amused at scholarly, logical Radiant having such trouble comprehending other planets, while Veil is okay with it. Or maybe that’s just my misinterpretation of Radiant. In any case, Veil is right, and I’m afraid they’re all going to learn far more about it than they wanted in the next few years. Perhaps even months.

P: They won’t learn it as quickly as they might have if she had followed through with Mraize’s plan and joined the Ghostbloods, but I have no doubt they’ll learn. Perhaps through Jasnah and Wit?

A: I was thinking more about Odium’s plan to take over the Cosmere using the Radiants as his army… but maybe that won’t happen for a while yet.

Shallan, Radiant thought. You could come and talk to people from other worlds. This is too big for Veil and me.

Shallan stirred, but as she did, that darkness moved with her. She quickly retreated.

A: Run away, run away!

P: She can be so confident at times, yet she’s hiding because of Pattern lying. Why not find out what exactly he lied about?

Shallan, Veil said, opening the sketchbook. See? It’s time to draw.

Shallan started to emerge. Unfortunately, a faint humming sound made her panic and Veil was thrust back into control. She sighed, glancing to the side—to where Pattern walked among the statues […]

A: They’re trying so hard to coax her out. This next bit is painful to read; she seems to be hiding from Pattern, but then she also seems to be very bitter and angry toward him, thinking that he betrayed her. Meanwhile, Radiant and Veil get more and more confused about who knows what, and why Pattern is lying to them.

P: It kind of bugs me how nobody has bothered to ask Pattern about what he lied about. As it turns out, Radiant does and it all comes out eventually. I just don’t get why Shallan put herself through so much torment?

A: It’s just infuriating, the way they assume they know what he’s thinking or what he lied about. (I really, really hate it when people misconstrue motives, and then blame the other person for what they only assume that person was thinking. Drives me insane.)

We can’t quote the entire thing, but Radiant decides to confront him about lying, and opens up a can of worms that’s way bigger than she expected. First he admits he’s been lying, then he pushes her to ask more questions, and finally gets her to start putting things together and realizing they don’t add up. Veil, knowing too many of the secrets, is worried by Radiant’s line of questioning, but she pursues it anyway, finally pinning down something that’s been nagging around the edges for a long time: If Pattern was so sure Shallan would kill him eventually, why did he bond her anyway? His answer is profound.

“You and the others,” Pattern said, “refer to Shadesmar as the world of the spren, and the Physical Realm as ‘your’ world. Or the ‘real’ world. That is not true. We are not two worlds, but one. And we are not two peoples, but one. Humans. Spren. Two halves. Neither complete.

“I wanted to be in the other realm. See that part of our world. And I knew danger was coming. All spren could sense it. The Oathpact was no longer working correctly. Voidspren were sneaking onto Roshar, using some kind of back door. Two halves cannot fight this enemy. We need to be whole.”

“And if Shallan killed you?”

“Mmm. I was sure you would. But together, we Cryptics thought we needed to try. And I volunteered. I thought, maybe even if I die it will be the step other spren need. You cannot reach the end of a proof without many steps in the middle, Shallan. I was to be the middle step.”

A: Oh, Pattern… so sure he would be killed, but willing to accept that fate for the sake of the experience and for the hope that other spren would also be willing to take the risk, to defend against Odium and the Fused.

P: This really makes me love Pattern all the more. How brave of him to take on this task!

A: The really frustrating part of the conversation is the bit where Radiant is asking direct questions, and misinterpreting the answers. Yes, he’s been lying, and yes, he used the seon cube—but not for the reasons she assumes. She almost gets to the truth, because Pattern has brought a deadeye along to meet her. Veil even recognizes her, but not quite soon enough…

Shallan emerged. She grabbed Radiant, shoved her away someplace dark and small, and slammed the door shut.

[…]

Shallan was in control. The other two became whispers. “No,” she said to Pattern. “We are not doing this.”

“But—” he said.

NO,” she said. “I want nothing from you, Pattern. You are a traitor and a liar. You have betrayed my trust.”

He wilted, flopping onto the bench.

A: The first-time reader may or may not have twigged to it yet, but on a reread this is just infuriating. Shallan knows. She knows the whole truth, but she’s going to aggressively refuse to face it, and essentially blame Pattern for things that not only aren’t his fault, but are completely disconnected from him. The only thing he’s done is know the truth but allow her to hide from it, and now she’s going to refuse to let him help her face the truth. Oh, Shallan, you poor broken frightened guilt-ridden child.

P: I want to hug her and smack some sense into her at the same time. Okay, maybe not smack… maybe a gentle nudge, instead. It’s unfathomable to me that she didn’t force the whole truth out of him right there.

A: The really awful part is that if she actually followed through on her current intent—to hide from the pain of what she did by aggressively becoming the terrible person she thinks she is—she would kill Pattern. Then she’d be responsible for two deadeyes as well as the death of both her parents, and I’m pretty sure the guilt of that would be more than even Formless could handle.

She needed to determine for certain that Sixteen was her target. Then…

Then what.

Kill him.

A: And that’s when you (or I, at least!) start to believe that Formless may have won. Shallan is reintegrating her memories, but in all the worst ways. All Veil’s stealth, all Radiant’s weapon skills, all Shallan’s repressed rage and fear… If this had been Restares, he’d have been dead.

P: I know that I was worried about how much influence Formless had on her at this moment and in the moments to follow.

“Shallan, I need to explain to you. What I’ve been doing.”

“No,” Shallan said, covering her pain. “It is done. Let’s move forward instead.”

“Mmm…” Pattern said. “I… What has happened to you? Something has changed. Are you… Veil?”

“No,” Shallan said. “I’m me. And I’ve finally made a difficult decision that was a long time coming.”

A: Sigh. Right decision—sort of, in the sense of starting to reintegrate—but the wrong way, the wrong reasons, the wrong result.

Secret Societies

Restares was, according to Mraize, a human male. […] And unfortunately, the description was rather vague. A shorter human with thinning hair.

A: OH GEE WHERE HAVE WE HEARD THIS DESCRIPTION BEFORE. Shockingly enough, it apparently didn’t register with any of the beta readers, or at least no one commented on it. So maybe it’s not as obvious the first time through as it is once you know.

P: I know that I didn’t catch on, either.

Restares led a group of people who had worked to restore the singers and the Fused. The coming of the Everstorm had led to the fall of multiple kingdoms, the deaths of thousands, and the enslavement of millions. The Sons of Honor were deplorable for seeking these things. True, it wasn’t clear their efforts had in fact influenced the Return, but she could understand why they wanted to hide.

A: All too true. While most of the Sons of Honor were merely foolish, and likely ineffective, I can’t help wondering if Gavilar’s activities were part of what enabled the breakout. I suspect we may learn more in the next book. In any case, “Restares” wouldn’t really want to be found by the Fused!

P: He certainly wouldn’t want to be discovered by the Fused. He’d get a nastier knife than Shallan has for him.

Cosmere Connections

She’d started with the largest group of people: a caravan of traders from a kingdom called Nalthis, a place out in the darkness beyond the edges of the map. Veil had chatted with them at length, discovering that Azure—who had moved on from the fortress by now—was from the same land.

A: I have to wonder why a caravan of Nalthian traders would stay here for a whole year. You don’t get much trading done sitting still, but what do I know about it? Maybe the Nalthians have other missions besides trade.

Also, oh, hey, Vivenna. Too bad we don’t get to find out yet where she went from here, but I guess it’s nice to know she made it and is likely still free. (I personally hope/suspect we may see her in the novella between books, which is supposed to be about Rock; she was looking for Cultivation’s perpendicularity, wasn’t she?)

It’s worth noting here (all out of order) that Pattern makes note of a distinct difference in appearance between the Nalthians and the Rosharans. He even goes so far as to wonder why Azure managed to look so like an Alethi. For anyone who hadn’t sorted it yet, this might just be a blazing clue that it’s because she’s got Returned blood, and she’s figured out how to change a lot more of her appearance than her hair in the years since she left T’Telir with Vasher.

The next handful on her list had been Horneaters; apparently there was a clan of them who lived in Shadesmar.

A: Speaking of Rock… I suspect this is foreshadowing for that novella.

P: I can’t wait for that novella!

A: So. She eliminates the Nalthians, the Horneaters, and four “wanderers” who don’t really fit the description, leaving her the one that obviously has to be Restares.

P: There’s literally nobody left, since they think that the High Judge is a spren.

The target called himself “Sixteen.” He supposedly came out of his home once every sixteen days exactly—the regularity of it amused the honorspren, who suffered the odd fellow because of the novelty.

A: And if that number doesn’t set off all the alarm bells for you, you haven’t read Mistborn yet. The fact that he doesn’t seem to eat, drink, or do any other bodily functions makes one wonder about him, of course. My immediate thought is “Cognitive Shadow” of course, but there could be other explanations too.

He was Shin; there was no mistaking that pale, almost sickly skin and those childlike eyes. Restares was a short Alethi man with wispy hair. This man was short, yes, but completely bald, and was not Alethi.

A: He’s probably not Shin either, just a human without the genetic adaptations to Roshar. Which leaves the burning question… Who is he? As noted above, “Sixteen” has definite Scadrian implications, but it might have Yolish implications too. For that matter, it would be significant to anyone sufficiently Cosmere-aware. The thought crossed my mind that he might be Shin after all, and be Szeth’s father, hiding from Ishar—but in that case, why Sixteen, and why does he not seem to need to eat? He could be a Cognitive Shadow, as mentioned earlier. It’s also possible that he’s got some kind of… portal, or something, that gives him access from inside his home to somewhere else, but we haven’t come across anything like that anywhere in the Cosmere yet, have we? (Aside from whatever mysterious mechanism brought the humans from Ashyn to Roshar, anyway…)

Who is Sixteen? Any ideas?

Arresting Artwork

A: They’re a fascinating bunch, all right, and they seem to be quite likable. I assume we’ll learn more about them in future books. It seems incredibly appropriate that the peakspren remind her of the Unkalaki (a.k.a. Horneaters), and I’m sure it’s not coincidence. The only question is which direction the influence went!

Also, I’m amused at that last bit, about the ability of peakspren to hide in stone and then re emerge from something as small as a pebble.

 

We’ll be leaving further speculation and discussion to you in the comments, and hope to join you there! Next week, we’ll be back with chapter 76, in which Navani and Raboniel make an astonishing discovery, and Navani ends the chapter with more insights than Raboniel.

Alice lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and two kids, and is currently unable to think of a single interesting thing to put in her bio this week.

Paige resides in New Mexico, of course and she’s ecstatic that baseball season is back! Links to her other writing are available in her profile.

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