Watcher of Truth

Oathbringer Prologue (spoilers)

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Hey everyone, I'm working on getting an answer back from team Sanderson. Until we get an answer, please don't post a transcript. 

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I cleaned up the audio a bit using audacity. Not going to post it unless a mod/team Sanderson says it's ok though.

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To Hell with his wishes transcribe it then email a copy to me...:)  j/k

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Ok, so here is what I have. Its far from perfect - a lot of words (almost all names) and sometimes sentences missing.
Tenses are probably messed a lot too and its not rly formatted, but maybe someone can use it as base for better transcript as most of text is already done.
When there is something missing I put time to corresponding audio.
 

prolog-en.doc

Edited by Kanrei
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On 2/5/2017 at 0:55 AM, PatronOfRot said:

I cleaned up the audio a bit using audacity. Not going to post it unless a mod/team Sanderson says it's ok though.

Considering Brandon was okay with the transcript being shared, and considering this whole thread is built around the shared audio clip, I would assume that this is okay to post. :)

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1 hour ago, jofwu said:

Considering Brandon was okay with the transcript being shared, and considering this whole thread is built around the shared audio clip, I would assume that this is okay to post. :)

Hmm. I thought I edited it in. Must have forgotten to save it. I'll have it up shortly.

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Very cool to read, and thanks to all who have worked on transcriptions. A couple of thoughts:

  • The humans stopped the Parshendi from transforming by capturing a very old spren. I suspect this third spren is of Adonalsium, and is the third Bondsmith spren. It's not Nightwatcher or Stormfather (since Lift visited Nightwatcher, and the vast bulk of the Parshendi haven't been released to bond forms yet), and for some reason I'm not leaning towards one of the Unmade as being a 'normal' part of the Listeners' life cycle. A third superspren, one that has been present since before the Shattering, would fit with the Listeners predating the Shattering as well, and provides a likely candidate for our missing Bondsmith spren. I don't think Cusicesh could fit, since he's not trapped in a gemstone.
  • The voice in Klade's head is attuned to the rhythms. This is reminiscent of similar instances we've seen in Mistborn, which would imply it's a Shard that is using the rhythms to speak into someone's mind. We have two active Shards, Cultivation and Odium. It might be a hidden plan of Cultivation, it might be that Odium needed a war to push the Listeners to experiment with stormspren. I can see either Shard as being a distinct possibility for now, until we learn who's pulling the strings. An off-the-walls idea is that it's the soul of Roshar that's coordinating these events, but I find that to be unlikely and am only mentioning it for completeness' sake.
  • The Parshendi didn't acquire Szeth until right before the assassination, seemingly by coincidence. How did Szeth get into an Alethkar slave market? But, he was already an assassin, and the Parshendi didn't give him his Honorblade, that was from Shinovar. This is probably one of the reasons Brandon had to write much of Szeth's flashback sequence, since it has to make sense how he arrived where he is, where he got his reputation, and how the Parshendi learned he was a Surgebinder. (Or, did they even know that? Did he say he was an assassin, and then they didn't know what to expect when they turned him loose?)
  • Looks like Voidlight is confirmed. Not a spren, but pure Investiture required for the Listener Forms of Power. Where is Eshonai's sphere now? How did it make its way over from Braize?
  • Gavilar is trying to bring the Heralds out of hiding. He knows most of them are on Roshar, but he must not have realized there was at least one in his palace that very day.
  • Gavilar is trying to bring pack the Listeners' old gods, of which Odium is king and the other gods are the Unmade. I don't think we have explicit confirmation on this, but it's seeming more and more likely. Thing is, the Thrill is happening in Dalinar's flashbacks, which well predate this prologue. So, at least one of the Unmade is already there and active, right? And the Death Rattles, how long have they been happening? Because that's another Unmade, isn't it? So what was he trying to accomplish that hasn't already been done? There are some cause-and-effect cases I would really like to see expanded on, so it's a good thing there are another thousand pages or so to this book.
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36 minutes ago, Pagerunner said:

And the Death Rattles, how long have they been happening? Because that's another Unmade, isn't it?

Death Rattles began to surface about the time Gavilar's expediction started to explore Shattered Plains (WoK, end of chapter 71). It's caused by Moelach (Taravangian interlude in WoR).

On the other hand, this WoB says:

Quote

The Thrill and the Death Rattles started around the same time, but the locations for the two fluctuate and have been since they appeared.

Edited by Oversleep
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Interesting read, and thanks to everyone who worked on transcribing the recording.

It seems like Gavilar has been trying to bring back Odium/another Desolation for the purpose of uniting either the Heralds or maybe even the other Shards within Cosmere? When he says, "Unite them. I need a threat. Only danger will unite them," this seems to point towards something along those lines. 

Gavilar wants to bring back the KR, but for what purpose? Is it really just because he sees the people and squabbles on Roshar as drab and pointless? Or is there a larger end goal he's trying to achieve with this? 

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I have to say it... I really have to say it: I really hate Gavilar. Dalinar might have been a brute, but at least he had the common sense to feel sorry for how he behaved. Gavilar is another kind of brute: one who seems in control and who is utterly convinced he is right. He is the dangerous one and I can't believe he was on his way to become a Radiant. I guess this confirms Radiants weren't all good people: many it seems were among the worst individuals to ever exists. 

Gavilar threw his own country into a blood shed just so he could unite. He is willing to slay innocent just so he could get his unity.

So yeah, I hate this guy. 

I like Eshonai in the prologue, though I am still annoyed at the Parshendi talk with all of these mentions of rhythms. It annoyed my in WoR and I see it still annoys me, so I'll have to see if I can get over it. This being said, it was interesting to read her perspective on humans. 

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1 hour ago, maxal said:

I have to say it... I really have to say it: I really hate Gavilar. Dalinar might have been a brute, but at least he had the common sense to feel sorry for how he behaved. Gavilar is another kind of brute: one who seems in control and who is utterly convinced he is right. He is the dangerous one and I can't believe he was on his way to become a Radiant. I guess this confirms Radiants weren't all good people: many it seems were among the worst individuals to ever exists. 

Gavilar threw his own country into a blood shed just so he could unite. He is willing to slay innocent just so he could get his unity.

So yeah, I hate this guy. 

I like Eshonai in the prologue, though I am still annoyed at the Parshendi talk with all of these mentions of rhythms. It annoyed my in WoR and I see it still annoys me, so I'll have to see if I can get over it. This being said, it was interesting to read her perspective on humans. 

I have to agree with you on Gavilar both he and Mr T. totally missed the point of the visions. Unlike Dalinar he didn't seem to change that much throughout getting the visions. Yes he changed a little by refusing duels and reading the way of kings,  However he totally missed or ignored the point of the Radiant Ideals and the life before death aspect of them. So no he wasn't on the way to becoming a radiant. More than likely the Stormfather just made a mistake in his choice of humans to receive the visions and corrected it by leading the Parsendai to buying Szeth. That last part is just my guess.

 

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7 minutes ago, Humpty said:

I have to agree with you on Gavilar both he and Mr T. totally missed the point of the visions. Unlike Dalinar he didn't seem to change that much throughout getting the visions. Yes he changed a little by refusing duels and reading the way of kings,  However he totally missed or ignored the point of the Radiant Ideals and the life before death aspect of them. So no he wasn't on the way to becoming a radiant. More than likely the Stormfather just made a mistake in his choice of humans to receive the visions and corrected it by leading the Parsendai to buying Szeth. That last part is just my guess.

We have WoB that Gavilar was indeed on the path to becoming a Bondsmith. The first ideal can be interpreted in many ways, and we know that some radiant orders can possess a Machiavellian philosophy.

Edited by Blightsong
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really that seems like a continuity error to me.  On one hand we a guy who is going to cause the deaths of thousands of people.  And at the same time BS says he was on the way to becoming a Radiant. "the radiant seeks to defend life always"

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5 minutes ago, Humpty said:

really that seems like a continuity error to me.  On one hand we a guy who is going to cause the deaths of thousands of people.  And at the same time BS says he was on the way to becoming a Radiant. "the radiant seeks to defend life always"

I think it more illustrates a misconception on what the Radiants were. Windrunner ideals are about protecting others. Edgedancer ideals are about helping others. But there are eight other large Orders, and the Bondsmiths who need to attract one of three specific spren.

To put a possible new perspective out there, Gavilar wasn't starting a new war. He's trying to end one that has long been dormant. He wants to finish what the Heralds have delayed, he may want to finish Odium off instead of leaving Rayse trapped on Braize. If he was indeed getting the same visions as Dalinar, then he was given a command to do something about it. Dalinar led his troops to the center of the Shattered Plains, which costed many lives, but was necessary for the war. Gavilar may have been in a similar situation; either leave Odium alone until he breaks free and destroys the world and everyone on it, or take drastic action to bring the Heralds back and defeat Odium once and for all. Neither possibility is good. But there is really only one option.

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7 hours ago, Pagerunner said:

Very cool to read, and thanks to all who have worked on transcriptions. A couple of thoughts:

  • The humans stopped the Parshendi from transforming by capturing a very old spren. I suspect this third spren is of Adonalsium, and is the third Bondsmith spren. It's not Nightwatcher or Stormfather (since Lift visited Nightwatcher, and the vast bulk of the Parshendi haven't been released to bond forms yet), and for some reason I'm not leaning towards one of the Unmade as being a 'normal' part of the Listeners' life cycle. A third superspren, one that has been present since before the Shattering, would fit with the Listeners predating the Shattering as well, and provides a likely candidate for our missing Bondsmith spren. I don't think Cusicesh could fit, since he's not trapped in a gemstone.
  • The voice in Klade's head is attuned to the rhythms. This is reminiscent of similar instances we've seen in Mistborn, which would imply it's a Shard that is using the rhythms to speak into someone's mind. We have two active Shards, Cultivation and Odium. It might be a hidden plan of Cultivation, it might be that Odium needed a war to push the Listeners to experiment with stormspren. I can see either Shard as being a distinct possibility for now, until we learn who's pulling the strings. An off-the-walls idea is that it's the soul of Roshar that's coordinating these events, but I find that to be unlikely and am only mentioning it for completeness' sake.
  • The Parshendi didn't acquire Szeth until right before the assassination, seemingly by coincidence. How did Szeth get into an Alethkar slave market? But, he was already an assassin, and the Parshendi didn't give him his Honorblade, that was from Shinovar. This is probably one of the reasons Brandon had to write much of Szeth's flashback sequence, since it has to make sense how he arrived where he is, where he got his reputation, and how the Parshendi learned he was a Surgebinder. (Or, did they even know that? Did he say he was an assassin, and then they didn't know what to expect when they turned him loose?)
  • Looks like Voidlight is confirmed. Not a spren, but pure Investiture required for the Listener Forms of Power. Where is Eshonai's sphere now? How did it make its way over from Braize?
  • Gavilar is trying to bring the Heralds out of hiding. He knows most of them are on Roshar, but he must not have realized there was at least one in his palace that very day.
  • Gavilar is trying to bring pack the Listeners' old gods, of which Odium is king and the other gods are the Unmade. I don't think we have explicit confirmation on this, but it's seeming more and more likely. Thing is, the Thrill is happening in Dalinar's flashbacks, which well predate this prologue. So, at least one of the Unmade is already there and active, right? And the Death Rattles, how long have they been happening? Because that's another Unmade, isn't it? So what was he trying to accomplish that hasn't already been done? There are some cause-and-effect cases I would really like to see expanded on, so it's a good thing there are another thousand pages or so to this book.

My thanks as well to everyone who put together the transcription!!

Some of my thoughts and responses to @Pagerunner's thoughts.

I tentatively agree with the idea that the ancient spren used to stop parshmem transforming must have been an Adonalsium spren and it makes some sense that it could be the third Bondsmith one.

The Voice - I definitely agree it was a Shard rather than an Unmade. I lean heavily towards Odium, while I think we know he can't communicate directly with humans like Ruin could (can't find the WoB) I think Odium has hijacked the Parshendi, who were originally of Adonalsium:

Quote

NTERVIEW: Mar 11th, 2014

WoR Signing Report - Awesomeness Summoned (Verbatim)

QUESTION

Are the Parshendi of Odium?

BRANDON SANDERSON

Not originally

Though against that, and for Cultivation, we have this:

Quote

INTERVIEW: Mar 11th, 2014

WoR Signing Report - Awesomeness Summoned

)Verbatim)

QUESTION

Are the Parshendiof Cultivation?

BRANDON SANDERSON

Not originally

and this:

Quote
  • INTERVIEW: Apr 8th, 2016

    Odyssey Con 2016

    BLIGHTSONG

    Can Odium change written word on Roshar like Ruin could on Scadrial? (I was wondering this because it would make it easy for him to manipulate Mr.T that way.

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    *apprehensive* This is not really a thing that Odium does. Um, yea.

As people have discussed before, the intent of Cultivation is probably to make things grow, change for the positive, even though that involves, let's say, some culling from time to time. Parshendi are now of Cultivation in part, Odium doesn't tend to do things like change writing, so i think I've just convinced myself that Cultivation is more likely :)

Everything with Szeth indicates very long term planning to reveal to him certain truths, get him declared truthless and have him in the position to stop the return of the old gods. So yeah definitely going cultivation, with long term planning to get Szeth in the right place at the right time. Fits as well with Mr T, who i suspect becomes more vulnerable to Cultivation's influence on his smart days.

I think Cultivation is the source of much of all this for the reasons discussed - to bring Odium out and defeat him properly, but at her chosen time, not his. She's mourned Tanavast for too long.

I agree that if the black sphere isn't Odium-essence it's one Braize of a red herring. The parshendi main forms are of Adonalsium, the new forms are of Odium formed by his own essence being given to them. I suspect the timing of the Unmade being back in action is based on Cultivation's longer term schemes.

They're my unbelievably long thoughts of how this all ties together :)

Edited by Extesian
Tidying up formatting
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It sure was a busy night for Gavilar (even before the point when some fool went and killed him). I assume all of this happens before the scene in WOR prologue, where Jasnah encounters Gavilar, still (or again) concocting secret plots with Meridas Amaram? These people were running all around the palace like mad things.

In the same Prologue we also learn the Liss  has brought Szeth with her to Kholinar, and has already sold him off to some unspecified person there (dude was to creepy for her. Too creepy for The Weeper, a paid assassin who cuts out the eyes of her victims)

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1 hour ago, Humpty said:

I have to agree with you on Gavilar both he and Mr T. totally missed the point of the visions. Unlike Dalinar he didn't seem to change that much throughout getting the visions. Yes he changed a little by refusing duels and reading the way of kings,  However he totally missed or ignored the point of the Radiant Ideals and the life before death aspect of them. So no he wasn't on the way to becoming a radiant. More than likely the Stormfather just made a mistake in his choice of humans to receive the visions and corrected it by leading the Parsendai to buying Szeth. That last part is just my guess.

 

As Blightsong confirms in his post, we do have WoB stating Gavilar was indeed on his way to become a Bondsmith, hence my comment. I personally find it extremely disturbing. As far as we know, the first oath to the Bondsmith is to unite and not divide: it doesn't say how one must perform this deed. Hence, it might be plunging your country in a civil war, slaughtering your own people just so you could sit on top of the mountain is a valid way to enforce this ideal. Hopefully, a future oaths will invalidate this behavior and Dalinar will prove to be the real Bondsmith and not Gavilar.

It also indicates it might be Taravangian is on his way towards becoming a Radiant too as his ways aren't so different than Gavilar. 

Still, I am very bothered by Gavilar. I never liked him and this prologue serves to reinforce those feelings. As much as I love to bash on young Dalinar, I did read something resembling empathy deeply buried within his mean wild ways. I saw none of it in Gavilar. 

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5 minutes ago, maxal said:

As Blightsong confirms in his post, we do have WoB stating Gavilar was indeed on his way to become a Bondsmith, hence my comment. I personally find it extremely disturbing. As far as we know, the first oath to the Bondsmith is to unite and not divide: it doesn't say how one must perform this deed. Hence, it might be plunging your country in a civil war, slaughtering your own people just so you could sit on top of the mountain is a valid way to enforce this ideal. Hopefully, a future oaths will invalidate this behavior and Dalinar will prove to be the real Bondsmith and not Gavilar.

It also indicates it might be Taravangian is on his way towards becoming a Radiant too as his ways aren't so different than Gavilar. 

Still, I am very bothered by Gavilar. I never liked him and this prologue serves to reinforce those feelings. As much as I love to bash on young Dalinar, I did read something resembling empathy deeply buried within his mean wild ways. I saw none of it in Gavilar. 

I think you are too harsh on Gavilar. If God himself tells you that you need to save humanity, you would probably do everything in your power to do so. We also don't know enough about what Gavilar knew to make assumption as to what his plan was. For all we know Amaram could be carrying out a plan divergent from the one Gavilar had in mind to begin with.

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12 minutes ago, Blightsong said:

I think you are too harsh on Gavilar. If God himself tells you that you need to save humanity, you would probably do everything in your power to do so. We also don't know enough about what Gavilar knew to make assumption as to what his plan was. For all we know Amaram could be carrying out a plan divergent from the one Gavilar had in mind to begin with.

I'm inclined to agree. This is why there are different radiant orders. There are idealists, there are pragmatists, they both have a role. And Gavilar wasn't trying to cause war, there was already war, he was trying to channel it into a higher cause, a war that had been on hold for several thousand years. Effectively releasing Odium's influence just to bring back the Nahel bonds and the Heralds is risky and will cost lives, but maybe it's worth the risk and will save lives in the long term.

I'm not saying I woulda dunnit, but I am saying it's not inherently wrong. It's the pragmatic move and it's definitely less outrageous than Mr T. I don't think it sounds inconsistent with the Radiants. Just certain orders of them. I suspect the orders with spren more from the Cultivation side are more willing to sacrifice for the greater good than the Honor type, where it's more about each action's morals. But even then you have the Skybreakers, mostly of Honor (I believe) but who will do seemingly harsh things in service of a 'higher' ideal. I think spren are like people, different ideas of what is 'right', and bond people who are like them, not who are objectively perfect.

Edited by Extesian
Additional thought
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10 minutes ago, Blightsong said:

I think you are too harsh on Gavilar. If God himself tells you that you need to save humanity, you would probably do everything in your power to do so. We also don't know enough about what Gavilar knew to make assumption as to what his plan was. For all we know Amaram could be carrying out a plan divergent from the one Gavilar had in mind to begin with.

It isn't just the prologue... There are also the flashbacks... The picture I am drawing of Gavilar isn't very sympathetic, but I am perfectly fine with this. In fact, I would rather if not all characters ended being good. Also, I never liked Gavilar, even in the books I didn't like him: something always seemed off to me. This being said, I am actually enjoying hating him. I love to hate characters.

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I'm with @Blightsong as well. It's too easy to judge Gavilar here without knowing everything he knows. I mean, I definitely suspect he's not an innocent angel. But if nothing else, I think he's convinced that he's doing the right thing.

Is it not evident that Odium will win under the status quo? He's already touching the world, and it's only a matter of time before he's free on his own terms. Stormfather's comments about Dalinar being too late come to mind. Can you blame a guy for taking extreme measures when impending doom is the alternative?

And we don't know his full plan. He obviously knows things that we still don't. Maybe he had a serious, legitimate plan to contain the Parshendi gods. Maybe the Listeners were completely manipulated (hello, rhythm voice?) into doing precisely what was necessary to stop Gavilar's plans?

You can't just pretend that the Everstorm coming (as it did) was Gavilar's end game. Seems to me he wanted to confront an imminent problem head on, on his terms, rather than let the world flounder in misdirection until it's too late.

I still strongly suspect his plan wasn't perfect. But I disagree with the heavy judgment at this point.

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7 hours ago, Pagerunner said:

The humans stopped the Parshendi from transforming by capturing a very old spren. I suspect this third spren is of Adonalsium, and is the third Bondsmith spren. It's not Nightwatcher or Stormfather (since Lift visited Nightwatcher, and the vast bulk of the Parshendi haven't been released to bond forms yet), and for some reason I'm not leaning towards one of the Unmade as being a 'normal' part of the Listeners' life cycle. A third superspren, one that has been present since before the Shattering, would fit with the Listeners predating the Shattering as well, and provides a likely candidate for our missing Bondsmith spren. I don't think Cusicesh could fit, since he's not trapped in a gemstone.

This.... uhm... Let's see.... The only way I can see what you are suggesting making sense to me is if it works as follows... Adonalsium is considered to be the original "patron saint" of the Listeners.  Now, this is not too far out. We know that they take on forms by bonding spren, and we know that they predate the humans (and therefore, at least, the coming of Honor and Cultivation - probably).  Being native to Roshar means that should predate the Shattering.  So, before Honor and Cultivation, they must've bonded spren, and therefore some of their early forms must've been Adonalsium-inspired ones. (now Adonalsium was a god of all, so those forms could be anything).

What still makes me wonder is this... I read the story of the last Desolation to be something like this: humans were fighting the voidforms of Listeners and via some feat of Investiture wound up being able to rip spren out of Listeners, turning them into parshmen.  However, *before* this happened, a splinter group of Listeners somehow defeated their voidforms to assume dullform and escape. They became the Parshendi we know now.  So, to me the "capturing very old spren" read like "spren" was in plural, and referred to the act of ripping the voidspren from the Listeners-in-voidform.

 

7 hours ago, Pagerunner said:

Gavilar is trying to bring pack the Listeners' old gods, of which Odium is king and the other gods are the Unmade. I don't think we have explicit confirmation on this, but it's seeming more and more likely. Thing is, the Thrill is happening in Dalinar's flashbacks, which well predate this prologue. So, at least one of the Unmade is already there and active, right? And the Death Rattles, how long have they been happening? Because that's another Unmade, isn't it? So what was he trying to accomplish that hasn't already been done? There are some cause-and-effect cases I would really like to see expanded on, so it's a good thing there are another thousand pages or so to this book.

Yeah, Gavilar and Sons of Honor are even creepier than the Skybreakers. I do not know if Brandon wanted Gavilar to come off as a disturbed eight-year-old who wants to burn down the house because someone took his candy away, but if he did, kudos.  Because this whole "I want my dear Heralds back because life is just too boring without a planetary Apocalypsis"  schtick is not making him look good.  Compared to him, Mr. T. is Miss Manners. 

I am also not surprised that anyone who had a clear idea of what Gavilar was up to would be very distrustful of Dalinar.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Blightsong said:

I think you are too harsh on Gavilar. If God himself tells you that you need to save humanity, you would probably do everything in your power to do so. We also don't know enough about what Gavilar knew to make assumption as to what his plan was. For all we know Amaram could be carrying out a plan divergent from the one Gavilar had in mind to begin with.

 

It is pretty clear by now that Dalinar's and Gavilar's paths have diverged significantly.  It is also clear that there are sufficiently many people on Roshar running around and one way or another trying to save Roshar from <insert something here>. Here are some of the wacky ideas that are being toyed with.

  • There is a group of people who misinterpret what can only be the in-world version of the "crack in the soul" myth and self-torture hoping to become Knights Radiant.
  • There is a group of people who run around and kill any emerging Surgebinder hoping that this will prevent Desolations from coming.
  • There is a group of people who assassinate monarchs, cause political chaos and try to amass power, all staked on semi-coherent writings of an obsessed person, hoping that this will save the world.
  • There is a group of people trying to kill Jasnah. There is a special place in hell for them.
  • And then there are people who decide that because life just isn't interesting enough because unlike five thousand years ago, they cannot just go and talk to their Gods [1], the correct course of action is to unleash upon the world the very enemies these Gods keep on fighting. 

This latter  plan makes Skybreakers look pitiful, and make the Diagram look positively the only sane people in the room.  

I am now absolutely convinced that Sons of Honor are the creepiest, most deranged and dangerous SOBs around.  The Earth parallel is the Christian sects that want to see all Jews move to Israel, because this is the event that will trigger Apocalypse. 

Yeah, Gavilar was on his way of Nahel-bonding Stormfather.  This actually is probably the best argument for why there should never be more than three Bondsmiths. Because if at least one of them is Gavilar-style wacko, Roshar is going down the drain.

[1] Who, we know from WOBs are certifiably insane in their own right (which makes this idea even worse than it otherwise looks)

 

1 hour ago, Extesian said:

It's the pragmatic move and it's definitely less outrageous than Mr T.

Nope. It really is nowhere near "pragmatic".  "Pragmatic" is running around and offing Surgebinders. You are killing individual people, but very few of them, and if this prevents entire countries from being burned out, certain lines of thinking may treat it as pragmatic: it is minimizing the overall loss of life over a long period of time.  The Diagram is the tragedy of an anti-villain turning dark and sociopathic. But Gavilar's approach to saving the world is wistful insanity of a spoiled child who has a sad because Santa isn't real and there is no Easter Bunny.

Edited by emailanimal
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