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  1. In OB we learn the apparent reason for the Recreance: Humans had been the original Voidbringers and would eventually destroy Roshar by using surges, as we hear from the Stormfather himself: The thing is, it does not make a lot of sense. A: They could have chosen a way less dramatic exit. They could have broken their bonds and still retain the Shardplates and Blades. This way their order would have remained as a powerful political institution to prepare humankind for the next desolation. Or in general to keep order in Roshar. B: There has been one Knight Radiant order around for 4000 years, they did not destroy Roshar and possibly never will. Therefore, behold my grand theory! The Radiants abandoned their oaths because they realized, humans are Odium`s children. This needs a bit of explanation. So let`s back off a bit shall we? Rosharan came from Ashyn/ the Tranquiline Halls, which they destroyed by using Surges. They had access to these Surges but they were likewise under Odium`s influence. I think it is likely Odium created Rosharan humans on Ashyn Edit: This is definitly not true as seen by WoB below quoted by RShara. Anyways, it is apparent Odium has a deep bond to Rosharan humans as he speaks to Dalinar and Taravangian: It is made clear in Dalinar`s passage explicitly and in T.`s implicitly that old Rayse regards Rosharan humans as his children. Maybe this is a special trait he brings to the power of Odium. He does not want to destroy them, he wants to corrupt Honors influence and ethics and bring them to his side. We know for some time that the question of whether you are on Honors or Odium`s side is not as much about your ends, but about what means you are willing to employ to get there. Journey before destination is Honor`s path. Passion before anything else Odium`s. Now, if we look around Roshar at the beginning of SA, we see Odium`s influence everywhere, Honor`s almost nowhere. Alethi culture is all about game, the thrill, the glory, the victory. The codes of Honor are followed by exactly no one except House Kholin. The Way of Kings used to be a handbook for any ruler, almost nobody is reading it in our time. The Vorin church reveres the Almighty, but does not put ethical, “honorable” restraints on anyone. In fact in Kholinar we see that one Ardent paving the way for the arrival of the Unmade. The Shin follow the code of their tradition too much. So much so they miss the time, for which they were created in the first place. They make Szeth Truthless for this. In Azir it is almost the same. The protocol has become so elaborate, it makes responding to challenges almost impossible. Powerful groups in both countries only care about staying in power, not about how this power is exercised. And then there is the enslavement of an entire race, about which nobody cares about…. I can think of two explanations for this horrible state of affairs. 1) Humans on Roshar as Odium`s children are more drawn to Odium than they are to Honor. 2) It was Odium`s subtle influence on his children over 4000 years that created this; Or a combination of the two. This is the explanation for point A). If the Radiants had stayed as a powerful force on Roshar, their Order would have been corrupted by the shortcomings of human nature or Odium`s influence. They would have become like the Skybreakers or the Vorin church: Organizations corrupted beyond recognition. Odium would only need to ask the Bondsmiths to release him end they would have freed him. By terminating the Order they gave future Radiants the chance to stand up to Odium. It is likely that the enslavement of the Listeners gave the deciding impulse to make them realize they were becoming a tool of Odium. Regarding point B), I propose it is not exactly Surgebinders onto themselves that are destroying worlds. It is Surgbinders under Odiums influence doing it, as it happened on Ashyn and was going to happen on Roshar with corrupted KR orders. The Knights realized that they were the children of Odium/ Voidbringers. Therefore they had to accept that their order would be corrupted, even if they had just abandoned the spren and carried on without them. The Skybreakers realized they would be immune to Odium`s influence, if they`d be completely emotionless. This in turn perverted the intent of their order.
  2. I'm sorry if this is something of an incoherent mess, but I'm writing this half-asleep and I may not know what I'm saying. From what we've seen so far in SA, the budding Radiants have to figure out their oaths on their own. They reach a point in their development where they exemplify the spirit of the oaths, and then they suddenly know the right words to say. And they don't know that their spren can turn into swords. Wyndle says (or rather, dances around the topic not-saying) that bondspren are not allowed to mention the Shardblade thing before it happens. Since there's only a handful of proto-Knights scattered all around Roshar, and it's been thousands of years since the KR were a thing, they can't know anything in advance. But as you get more and more Radiants, sooner or later they're going run into someone else of their own order. And the Noobs Radient are going to ask their more experienced counterparts, "So how does this work, exactly?" The system is going to change, unless the bondspren have some objection to sharing the Words. Would the bondspren want the Words to stay secret? Would they object to their human partners telling the Noobs Radiant where Shardblades come from, or is it just against the rules for the spren to say it? Because if it's supposed to be all Top Secret Classified Keep Out That Means You, I can't see that working very well. It only takes one person to hear a KR talking to her sword and drawing a conclusion, or one Knight to have a Kaladin moment and find his Words while in public, and word will spread. Two possible conclusions about the Words: 1. The Words are instinctive when you reach a certain level, but nothing bad happens if you say them early. Nothing good happens either; the Words are just words until you grow into them. You can't just, say, bond a cultivationspren, read the Edgedancer oaths off of an index card, and boom, you're a full-blown Edgedancer. 2. It's the intent to fulfill your oaths that counts. You can read them off an index card and progress all at once if you sincerely mean to hold up your Order's Ideals. The KR 2.0 is doing things the slow way because they don't have anyone to tell them what the Ideals are until they level up themselves. Just to put that out there as a hypothetical possibility that I don't think fits with what we've seen; something in the back of my head that I don't have words for sees a way this makes sense, but that may be because of the aforementioned sleep-deprivation. I'll come back and see if still works when I'm not tired. Closemouthed Spren: Are bondspren mum about the swords because it's against their nature to give Radiant spoilers, or do they have a specific reason for keeping quiet? Also, do they forget the Ideals until their bond develops, or are they deliberately not telling those, either? Discuss.
  3. After spending WAY too much time researching the various orders and being consistently dissatisfied with other quizzes online, I created a Knights Radiant Order sorter (I hate that that rhymes) based upon personality, psychology, and ideology. I'd love to know what orders you all fall into with this quiz, whether or not you think it's accurate, or if you think I should change something. For my sake and the sake of others, I need to have a good personality identification not based upon stupid questions like "Which character is your favorite". Knights Radiant Order Quiz ^Links updated, now works I took the test the day after I created it (so I couldn't remember much of the specific tagging I did), answering as honestly as possible, and got the order I identify with, so I'm really hoping it's accurate.
  4. From the album Stormlight Archive desktop wallpapers

    Truthwatchers wallpaper with a quote from Words of Radiance
  5. From the album Stormlight Archive desktop wallpapers

    1920x1080 .jpg of the Bondsmiths glyph and Dalinar Kholin's Third Ideal
  6. From the album Stormlight Archive desktop wallpapers

    Willshapers wallpaper using a quote from Words of Radiance
  7. From the album Stormlight Archive desktop wallpapers

    Stonewards wallpaper with a quote from Words of Radiance
  8. From the album Stormlight Archive desktop wallpapers

    Dustbringers wallpaper with a quote from the Prelude to the Stormlight Archive
  9. This is not about the spren that bond to knights (honorspren, cryptics, etc). I'm curious about the connection that some spren seem to have with certain orders of Radiants. Since we have so few Radiants, particularly in the same order, it's hard to make any good observations. Windspren are the most curious. Syl calls them cousins several times and tries to explain to Kaladin that winds are of honor. Kaladin meanwhile in OB is so desperate to protect that he starts airbending at one point (which Syl is surprised and curious about). Windspren also gather to Kaladin while traveling in Shadesmar. Creationspren pop up regularly around Shallan, eventually by the hundreds. If Shallan is like Kaladin, she might be able to manipulate them to some extent. I can't help but think that the way they take the shape of random things is similar to the sea of glass bead souls in Shadesmar (and thus to soulcasting). Gloryspren appear around Dalinar at least two notable times in OB. Once when he's using Bondsmith abilities to fix a temple, and then at the end when....uh....there's a lot of unifying going on. And in the middle of it is a giant swirling pillar of gloryspren. I know these spren are probably heavily leaning towards Honor or Cultivation and that may be part of the attraction towards the radiants, but maybe there's something more?
  10. Hello all! The dust has settled on Roshar. The Final Desolation has come and gone. The time has come for a new order of Heralds. Unity has chosen you to join his heralds and lead a new order of Radiants. Chose your surges, your ideals, and your attributes. Stand firm and strong, for there must always be a watcher at the rim... The Order of Gatelords: Outgoing and earnest, the Gatelords must walk a fine line. On the one hand, they hold the terrible power of division, and on the other, the blessed gift of progression. Firm and resolute, they have garnered much respect among their Radiant colleagues. One modern scholar remarked on their personality: "They were fiercely protective of their charges, and cared little for their own safety. Where there was danger, you could bet the Gatelords would be there first. I don't think they would ever willfully permit any to confront an enemy without first being present. They were a group to whom you could run for the most serious of aid, and never expect to be turned down. "However, be warned. If you ever harm one whom a Gatelord views as their charge, you may forever be viewed as an enemy. It is rare that a Gatelord forgives this offense, and it may take years to prove that you are worthy of exoneration." Your turn!
  11. I always liked thinking about the Knights Radiant as powerful chosen ones in ancient legends. It is said that they were not perfect but most of them were broken at some point (as regularly emphasized). But I get the impression that they were not ordinary. Not everyone could become a radiant even if they wanted to. You didn't only need to say the Words but you had to be worthy. The journey of Kaladin was detailed. We read his childhood, hardships he went through, bridge days, slave days, his personality. So his transformation felt natural and pacing made sense. The words came in order and it was not easy to say them sincerely. Afterall, being able to use stormlight or bonding a spren shouldn't be too easy, considering the power it grants. So my question is, what do you think about the requisites before becoming a full radiant? Do you think Radiants should be rarer or is it more fun to have more of them around? I personally didn't even like the squire thing. Being able to suck in stormlight after just a few field trips to Shattered Plains with prof Kaladin... Seemed to undermine how hard it is to become a Radiant. You could say that Bridge 4 pushed through same nightmare as Kaladin in bridge days but the difference was that Kaladin changed those hopeless men and decided to protect them no matter what in that hellish situation. None of them even came close to what Kaladin did in those days. Following him is not the same thing. But now, they swear ideals left and right, when did Teft even said the second ideal before he said the third? It just feels too quick or even not justified. I like Bridge 4 characters but I don't think everyone needs to become a Radiant and they shouldn't. What do you guys think?
  12. Two Spren types/SHARDPLATE theory Ok so I have a theory that eacg Radiant order has two different types of Spren. The first one is one of the ten higher types of Spren, which forms the Nahel-bond and once the Radiant swears the third Ideal of his/her order, can turn into a Shardblade. The second type of Spren is one of the lesser Spren. My theory is that once the Radiant swears the fourth oath, these lesser Spren form into that person’s Shardplate. Which explains why Sanderson has said that Shardplate isn’t as invested as Shardblade, it’s made up of weaker Spren then Shardblades. This theory is backed up by the fact that when Kaladin was about to swear the fourth ideal of the Windrunners (I am aware he didn’t) hundreds of windspren where spinning around him. And when he said to Syl that he couldn’t swear the oath, he apologized to Syl and the WINDSPREN. This theory is backed up further as throughout Oathbringer the closer he got to swearing it the more windspren appeared in Shadesmar around him. So I think it might work something like this: Windrunners: windspren Bondsmiths: gloryspren Elsecallers: logicspren Willshapers: intoxicationspren (JK) Lightweavers: creationspren Edgedancers: lifespren Skybreakers: ???? Truthwatchers: ???? Stonewards: ???? Dustbringers: flamespren With this in mind, think off the various statements about Spren throughout the series. No Spren in Shinovar: this could mean that no Radiants lived here, so no lesser Spren needed to be there to form into Shardplate. Logicspren only common in Urithiru: this could be where most Elsecallers lived, as I can totally see all the scholars hiding away in some hidden corridor somewhere. Windspren super common in Alethkar: we know as a fact that most Windrunners came from and lived in that area. If someone could confirm this at I signing for me, that would be great. (Ps. I want props for this theory).
  13. So reading Oathbringer I was really confused. The Knights Radiant was refounded and the numbers were increasing. But mostly with just more wind runners. Shallan is kind of training squires... But not really. Kaladin is the only one we see who actually is trying to get more radiants. He is recruiting squires and making the most of it. Because of this we have several new radiants. Rock, Teft, Lopen, and maybe a few others. But Jasnah doesn't have any squires. Shallan accidentally gets a few but she isn't even meaning to get them. Renarian isn't doing anything. Why is Kaladin the only one who actually is actively working to expand the knights radiant?
  14. Did anyone else think it was weird how when Szeth pops up during the battle for Thaylen City, everyone is just sort of okay with him being there? What Lift thinks: What Dalinar thinks: What Jasnah thinks: This last quote by Jasnah almost seems to be bordering on humorous, as if she's saying, "Hahaha, the Assassin in White, what a joke, I never thought I'd see him on our side! Sure, he brutally murdered my father, and half the rulers of Roshar, and then was killed himself by Kaladin so he's basically a zombie as far as we know, but we'll take all the help we can get!" This was just really weird to me, and seemed like a major oversight. You would think that at least Jasnah would be threatened by Szeth - she seemed to have a really close relationship with Gavilar, why is she so nonchalant about meeting his murderer? And why are they all okay with Szeth becoming Dalinar's bodyguard and joining the Knights Radiant - do none of them think for a moment that he might be trying to stab Dalinar in the back while no one is looking? Nobody has questions for him, nobody attacks him, nobody screams because he's apparently come back from the dead. I feel like the comeback of Szeth is supposed to be really cinematic and cool - he sweeps onto the battlefield, clothed in white, wielding a black sword, redeeming himself... and everyone is so awestruck that they conveniently forget the fact that he is the most feared, notorious and dangerous criminals in the world, and HE WAS KILLED by Kaladin as far as they know, so why is he even alive? I get that they're in a tight place and they're not going to interfere if Szeth is helping their cause, but everyone seems so unfazed by his appearance - they're mildly surprised, and a bit confused, but then they get over it almost immediately and he's just one of the gang as far as they're concerned. Did anyone else feel like the return of Szeth was really rushed, and that it was weird how easily everyone just accepted him as a good guy?
  15. So I created an account just so I could pose this questions to everyone. Be warned, Oathbringer spoilers here! ---- We now have scenes from Oathbringer (as well as WoB) demonstrating the use of one type of investiture to fuel a different off world sub-type of magic (ex. Szeth using stormlight to fuel Nightblood rather than breath). Now that Hoid is Knight Radiant in addition to a fully powered lerasium mistborn what sort of effect would stormlight have fueling allomancy? We see Kaladain receive a renewing supply of energy flying at the front of the everstorm and Szeth able to unleash the full effects of Nightblood without having to utilize biochromatic breath. Would stormlight act as a "metal supply" for Hoid? And if so, would it also potentially fuel him with an "atium reserve", possibly even a renewing one if he was near the everstorm? Conversely what sort of effect would metal vials have fueling surgebinding?
  16. I'd like to bring your attention to Maleshi, now mentione twice - in WoR and OB (emphasis mine): Melishi – the sole Bondsmith of the last Radiant generation during a False Desolation. He imprisoned Ba-Ado-Mishram, the highprincess of the Unmade and commander of Odium’s forces (according to Mythica), who was providing voidlight for the parsh in the absence of Odium - already imprisoned by Honor at that time I assume. These parsh are ‘the devils’ the KR were said to be fighting at Feverstone Keep in Dalinar’s vision of Recreance. Not only did Melishi and the coalition of Radiants manage to capture Ba-Ado-Mishram, but also caused the fighting parsh to lose their ability to form bonds with spren. Around this time the Last Legion escaped all and hid until their descendants were discovered by Kholin expedition. Somehow they managed to avoid losing the ability to bond spren, so the imprisonment of Ba-Ado-Mishram is not the main reason other parsh were stuck in dullform. So, matching False Desolation, cognitive destruction of most parsh and Recreanse, we get Windrunners and Stonewards abandoning their Shards for people to easily find and take. If the reasoning behind it was what was done to the parsh, surely this wasn’t the best way to do it. They deliberately left both Plates (that could have been dismissed for all we know and disappear as a footnote in history) and Blades out in the open for anyone to take at Feverstone Keep. The only threat I can think of that is worth fighting with Shards are Odium’s forces, so I suggest the Radiants were inclined to think they did not permanently defeat their enemy. In the light of all that, I do not believe the revelation humanity isn’t originally from Roshar played as big a role as the Stormfather claimed. They disbanded for whatever actual reason, yet left invaluable weapons to humanity for future war. It is interesting to point out previous books claimed Urithiru was abandoned before Recreanse, yet there doesn’t seem to be much of a time difference between the two. How whatever was happening with the Sibling, Urithiru becoming unsafe and uninhabitable (for more see Urithiru the corrupted city), along with the tensions between Windrunners and Skybreakers, the only ones who kept their Oaths to present day, is related to it all remains to be seen.
  17. Looking through Arcanum, found this: (original link) I take it, the Radiant Order would be Willshapers, but they no longer accept humans.
  18. Towards the end of Oathbringer, Moash was given a special knife with which he killed Jezrien and was later given the Herald's shardblade. With Jezrien being the first Herald to die a true death (which probably means he cannot be resurrected), Is Moash going to the the newchampion of Odium?
  19. In one of Dalinars flashbacks, he met a beggar in The Beggar's Court at the Royal Palace to share his drink. Could this beggar have been Jezrien, The Herald King, Patron of the Windrunner later killed truly by Moash?
  20. Hey 17th Shard, My best friend shared with me an interesting theory that I wanted to run past you. He is not much for the forums but he did say he would be OK if I shared it here. I took his idea and built up a quick assumption list to help solidify his insight. Assumptions: 1. Bondsmiths can make and break Nahel, and other, bonds between a person and a spren. This assumption is not, necessarily, pivotal to the theory but perhaps the Bondsmiths are the ones who figured out what to do. 2. There is some sort of fundamental, underlying principles that dictate how these bonds are formed. Perhaps it is the innate system of the Rosharan system that makes the rule, perhaps Honor/Cultivation have a hand in it, perhaps it is a mix of those two, or perhaps it is something else altogether. Whatever the reason is, I do not think it is too big of a stretch to say that Brandon would create governing principles for the Rosharan magic systems. 3. The Knights Radiant of old (pre-Recreance) knew that Parshendi (or Parshmen) were Voidbringers. Or, since there is some debate about what a Voidbringer actually is, we might say that the Knights Radiant of old were aware that Parshendi/Parshmen were involved, somehow, with Desolations and Voidbringers. Theory: The Knights Radiant, knowing that Parshendi were related to the Desolations/Voidbringers (see assumption 3), discovered a way to break (see assumption 1) the underlying magical principle (see assumption 2) that allowed Parshendi to bond with Voidspren. In doing so, however, they also had to break their own bonds as well because the underlying principle applied to both their Nahel bond and the Parshendi bond. The Recreance was a direct result of the Knights Radiant deciding to give up their bonds because they thought it would forever prevent the Voidspren from bonding with the Parshendi again. We know that one Order of Radiants (possibly the Skybreakers) secretly kept their bonds which means that whatever a Bondsmith (see assumption 1) did to break the underlying principle (see assumption 2) was not completely successful - either due to the Order that secretly refused or perhaps because the Bondsmith just did something wrong. This mistake/accident/betrayal meant that some of the Parshendi remained Parshendi (Eshonai's people) and most turned into the Parshmen. This also means that the line in the Diagram about Taravangian possibly reusing the secret that broke the Radiants before could be referring to this. If the current Radiants were told that they could break all of the Voidspren's bonds with Parshendi by sacrificing their spren what would Kaladin, Shallan, and the others do? Could they justify to themselves not doing this? If they could save the world by sacrificing their spren... well, I think it would be hard for them to refuse. What say you Sharders? Is it possible that the Recreance was caused by the Knights Radiant delibrately trying to break the bonding process so that Parshendi could never again join with a Voidspren?
  21. There's been a lot of speculation about what the secret was that destroyed the Knights Radiant, as well as speculation into the causes or mechanics of the Desolations and the Oathpact. I have a wild theory that connects the two. There's probably a thousand things wrong with it, and even I see a bunch of holes and leaps in logic, but hopefully it will at least be entertaining. It starts with a WoB exchange I saw posted in another topic earlier today by Steeldancer, so credit goes to them for finding this quote: So we know that the Heralds all being present on Roshar causes another Desolation to occur. The question is, why? Well let's consider what we know of Worldhopping, because that is essentially what is happening. Spren (and perhaps originally the Listeners themselves) come from Braize to Roshar. Other worldhoppers transition between the Cognitive realm and the Physical realm using Perpendicularities. Other WoB have confirmed that perpendicularities could be caused by a massive amount of Investiture. I believe it was confirmed that Jasnah essentially did a miniature version of this to return to the physical world. My theory is that the Heralds act like Investiture lodestones. If they stay long enough in the world, there is a kind of critical mass that occurs, creating enough of a perpendicularity for Odium's forces to transition en masse into Roshar. This is basically how the new Everstorm worked. Once a critical mass of Fused Listeners was reached, they were able to call the storm. I believe the Everstorm itself is Odium’s perpendicularity on Roshar, at least this time around. We know it carries Voidspren with it, and could be what allows them to come into the Physical realm in large numbers. We also know that it was created by a large number of Fused (ie, Invested) Listeners pooling their energies. That sounds like a recipe for a perpendicularity to me. Now what if the Highstorm works in the exact opposite way (which would make sense, since they are reversed in every other way). The Highstorm is described by (suspiciously colour-obsessed and oddly familiar) “Zahel” as “invested to the hilt and looking for somewhere to stick it.” (As an aside: god bless “Zahel”). The Highstorm disperses Investiture. It takes a huge amount, maybe enough to form a perpendicularity, but then spreads it out across literally the entire world. I submit that this was its primary purpose (because remember, the Stormfather has been tasked with keeping the Highstorms coming, and presumably Honor would have some reason for unleashing these things periodically upon the world). My theory is that there are other ways to enable (or hasten) a Desolation. Perhaps with sufficiently concentrated Investiture, Odium can create a workaround, or at least speed things up, with less time between Desolations. The Highstorm is a check against this by dispersing Investiture, whereas the Everstorm keeps it concentrated (which is which it doesn’t infuse gems with Stormlight). So Honor works to prevent (large) perpendicularities from forming, and Odium tries to create more. Smaller perpendicularities ensure that the two worlds will never be entirely isolated, but might not facilitate a lare-scale invasion. The Oathpact, then , could be an agreement. Honor creates a bargain by which Odium has a shot at Roshar every once and a while. Honor essentially creates the Honorblades as a controlled means of opening a path between worlds by way of highly concentrated Investitute (which could be why Syl refers to Szeth using a dangerous amount of Stormlight with the Honorblade). At the same time though, he makes them double as a means of fighting against the very invasion they facilitate. Odium, in turn, agrees not to just come over to Roshar and destroy it himself, an agreement that binds him even after Honor's death. So how do the Knights Radiant fit in? Well we already know that they were not intended by Honor. They were the result of the spren taking it upon themselves to mimic what he had done. They mimic the Honorblades, which are presumably involved with the Oathpact (see above). What if, unintentionally, they have re-created certain aspects of the Oathpact as well, as a side effect of the nahel bond? The Heralds, when concentrated on Roshar, kicked off Desolations. The Fused, when concentrated on Roshar, kicked off the Everstorm. And for however many centuries, human beings, Invested to the hilt, as it were, were concentrating themselves in a specific location: Urithiru. What if this was enough to, if not cause the Desolations, at least exacerbate them in some way? What if it created enough of a perpedicularity to allow some of Odium's forces onto Roshar in a consistent manner, like a door propped open even between the Desolations. Spoilers from Edgedancer: To me, this seems like the kind of revelation that would utterly crush a group dedicated to sacrificing for the good of all. To learn that they and their spren had in fact been causing or at least hastening/worsening the Desolations, that all of their efforts and sacrifice were only perpetuating a cycle of endless violence, I could see that breaking them, and causing the Recreance.
  22. I feel like I should know the answer to this, but I don't, so, here goes. What is the other Windrunner surge, after gravity?
  23. [ Spoilers from the first 30 chapters of Oathbringer currently released ] So with the "final Desolation" pretty much officially underway as of the end of WoR, the main question going through my mind has been: how the hell can Odium actually lose??? Think about it. We know from Dalinar's visions and various other lore elements that in the past each Desolation nearly wiped out humankind. In fact, the justification for the current level of technology (or lack thereof) is that civilization is basically pushed back to the bronze age with each Desolation because of how devestating they are. And now consider this: that was with the full, organized strength of the Knights Radiant. Literal armies of them. Plus the Heralds! Now we have the Final Desolation coming, and so far there's only a handful of fledgling Knights Radiant, none of whom even have their Shardplate yet. Not only that, but the existing nations are super divided, and at the start of Oathbringer it looks as though it will not be easy to unite even a small number of them. So how can Odium screw this up? How could this be even a close fight? It seems to me that the only possibility is that the Listeners (at least some of them) are going to fight with humans. This is being set-up already at the beginning of Oathbringer, where we see groups of former parshmen slaves, healed by the Everstorm, basically just on the run. Not trying to attack, not out to kill humans in vengeance even (though they have real cause to want revenge). Just trying to survive, and most importantly not yet infused with any type of Voidspren (at least not in any obvious way). We also know that the Listeners way back made a choice to cut themselves off from their gods (Odium and co), restricting their forms drastically but earning freedom. They assassinated Gavilar in an effort to stop their "gods" from returning. They don't want to be Voidbringers, and I can totally see at least some of them fighting to maintain their freedom, refusing to be used by Odium. This could be what is "different" about this Desolation, the edge that humanity needs to balance the scales just enough to have a hope of winning. It would also fit with the themes established throughout the Cosmere books (spoilers for Mistborn series coming). We know from The Hero of Ages that the Deepness was in fact the mists. But more than that, it was Preservation's power tainted by Ruin. Ruin caused the Snapping process to be more brutal than it needed, killing people instead of just awakening their powers, covering the land and blocking out the Sun when it wasn't meant to, etc... This was Preservation's actual power, but Ruin managed to influence it. This shows that the influence of the Shards is not always rigid and distinct. There is overlap and intermingling, where multiple Shards use the same basic phenomenon. That is what the Thrill has to be. Dalinar's first revealed vision, where he fights Midnight Essence, with a poker. The Knight explains that any who feel the desire to fight should be compelled to go to Aletha. The Thrill USED TO BE a force for good, a way of telling people that they were destined to fight evil alongside the Knights (either as a full member or as a "squire." Since then, it has been twisted by Odium into something that makes people lust for battle and death. And without actual monsters around, they turn on each other, or make a game out of war, or almost kill their own brother. Odium is doing the same thing that Ruin did. But maybe it can go both ways. I've seen others here comment that it is odd that the Everstorm seems to heal the parshmen, making them whole again by reforging their Connection (incidentally, because of how we know this works from the second Mistborn series, this explains why they all speak unaccented Alethi). This seems like a very un-Odium thing for the Everstorm to do, especially since they do not seem to be possessed by Voidspren yet. What if Cultivation pulled the same kind of trick? Twisting the Everstorm just enough that it healed parshmen without automatically dominating them, giving them at least a chance to resist, run, be free, what have you? We know from the Jasnath-Hoid dialogue that the Everstorm is "new" or at least working differently than how the Desolations worked in the past. Perhaps the reason is that this time there are forces other than Odium at work on it. There are even hints about this in the depiction of the Midnight Mother. During Shallan's interactions, it is revealed that she was created to sow chaos, but that over time she became curious. Yes, it is a twisted, warped curiosity. But consider her actions at Urithiru. Did she flood the tower with monsters? Did she set about assassinating actual targets? No, she just copied what humans were already doing. Does this seem particularly effective? Or does it seem like a lost, broken creature trying to comprehend these creatures through the only relationship she understands: violence? My point is just this: she has actually changed since her creation. Just like the Everstorm is different this time. Just like maybe the Listeners aren't behaving the way Odium might want this time around. A big theme so far is how the good guys, left to their own devices, become corrupt and fell. But I think Brandon is hinting that maybe, just maybe, the reverse is true for the villains. Odium is banking on how time changes humans, makes them forget why they fought and abandon what they once were. But wouldn't it be poetic if the same was also happening to his forces? The Unmade have changed, however slightly. The Listeners seem to have changed as well. And maybe this time around they will surprise him, make him think that he could actually lose...
  24. Okay, so I've been reading the free chapters of Oathbringer on Tor, and I got to Dalinar's conversation with the Stormfather about challenging Odium to a duel, and I wondered "what would the stakes have to be for Odium to accept?" I knew that Odium would only accept such a challenge if winning would put him significantly further ahead than he already was, and he was basically winning the war at that point. So what could put him so far ahead that it would be worth it? What could possibly stand in his way that he could remove more effectively by drinking a duel than his other methods? Radiants. They could pose a serious problem to his plans, and fighting then could be really annoying, even for a Shard. What if Odium could ensure that, if he won, all of the Radiants would go away? Say, break their oaths or something... So what if that's already happened before? What if that was the cause for the Day of Recreance? This actually makes sense, if you think about it. We know that one Order didn't break it's oaths, so maybe they had all agreed to break their oaths if their contestant lost, and one order broke that promise instead of those previously made to their Spren, or didn't agree at all. I'm not sure which order this would be, but what do you think? Could this be it?
  25. What odd or interesting (or humorous) names could you make up for orders of knights radiant? thingpoker - they would go around poking things all day foodtaster - no idea what they would do windrunner + edgedancer = winddancer bondsmith + skybreaker = bondbreaker (downright genius this one is. kinda seems to defeat the purpose though.)