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Korbin

[OB] Kaladin's Ideal Woman

161 posts in this topic

30 minutes ago, Dreamstorm said:

Sorry, you edited to add that and I didn't re-read when I quoted it.  I think it's very hard for Kaladin to separate his duty to protect from personally caring.  Besides in the line you bolded ("What did he care? He intended to see his parents moved from this city anyway.") this makes it seem like he would abandon them, which we all know he won't do.  Kaladin has these dramatic reactions all the time (e.g. when talking to Dalinar about flying to Kholinar with Elhokar and having to brood about it and then say he was fine with taking Elhokar) but in the end he feels just as emotional about protecting the people he doesn't necessarily care for.  Besides with Laral at least, this is all after she just shot him down (shutting down the "I was going to save you"), so there's a definite sense of rejection going on.

Laral changed. People do. Kaladin sees that and notices that any romantic feelings that might have been there when he was crushing on her are gone. I mean, are you okay with how Laral talked to him? A supposed friend?

I'm not discounting the possibility, that there could be something between them in the future, but any romantic attraction that was there is terribly, terribly dead. They'd have to start again at square one and then Kaladin could also date Jenet or May Aladar for all that it is worth. I just don't see any special connection between them anymore and Kaladin seemingly doesn't either.

I'm absolutely not saying, that he would abandon anyone, but that he probably wouldn't lose a lot of sleep over not being there for Laral and Roshone, if something would happen to them. Lirin, Hesina and Oroden? Dalinar, Shallan or Adolin? Bridge Four? We're talking about depression deluxe again. Like after Elhokar, because he started to care about him personally.

But we can agree to disagree and wait for whatever happens. I really don't want to start a fight with you over speculation. :D

Edited by SLNC
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15 minutes ago, SLNC said:

Laral changed. People do. Kaladin sees that and notices that any romantic feelings that might have been there when he was crushing on her are gone. I mean, are you okay with how Laral talked to him? A supposed friend?

I'm not discounting the possibility, that there could be something between them in the future, but any romantic attraction that was there is terribly, terribly dead. They'd have to start again at square one and then Kaladin could also date Jenet or May Aladar for all that it is worth. I just don't see any special connection between them anymore and Kaladin seemingly doesn't either.

I have no clue if anything romantic will happen between them (likely not, because I think all signs point to Shallan), but I hardcore disagree with you that he has zero feelings for her in the watcher at the rim chapter.  He tried to impress her ("'I imagine returning here a war hero and challenging Roshone.  I wanted to save you, Laral'"), she shot him down ("'I am quite happy here.'"), they argue about Roshone (the "little passion to continue the argument" is about how he doesn't feel strongly about his hatred for Roshone anymore, as tied to his embarrassment after the punch and his new "perspective"), and then he gets all pissy when Syl asks about Laral ("'That's a girl I was never going to marry, no matter what happened.'" is a lie and he knows it, as everything we've been told is that Kaladin was going to marry Laral if Wistiow hadn't died.)  Seems like classic rejection causing indignation (I don't know what you're talking about, I never liked her anyway!) sort of thing to me.  But, it's cool you have a different take!

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Deep down I think we all know that Kaladin's going to die a virgin ;) 

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6 hours ago, Dreamstorm said:

Hmmmm, maybe I can even get up the courage to do a Case for Kadolin post... (caveating that I understand it's not going to happen in the book so I don't get yelled at for that!  But still why I love it and what in-book "evidence" we have...)

There's a lot to dig into in the books for these two, a lot of meaningful growth and interaction between them, and there's a lot of relevance they have to each other. It's just sort of funny and sad... a ship's canon-ness or lack thereof doesn't contribute to its legitimacy in most fandom corners of the internet; I actually find it a shame folks feel it's necessary to base all their arguments around whether it'll happen or not. But I guess that's a total paradigm shift from other species of theorizing Sanderson fans end up doing - it's just that (a) digging into the text to try and prove that a ship might become canon and (b) shipping are two totally different animals. I just know that I'd really love to hear your thoughts, and I'm sure there are at least a few others who would have fun with that discussion, too!

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About Laraldin, I will only bold this:

6 hours ago, SLNC said:

“Roshone brutalized my family. He sent my brother to his death and did everything he could to destroy my father!”

“And your father spoke against my husband,” Laral said, “disparaging him in front of the other townspeople. How would you feel, as a new brightlord exiled far from home, only to find that the town’s most important citizen is openly critical of you?”

Her perspective was skewed, of course. Lirin had tried to befriend Roshone at first, hadn’t he? Still, Kaladin found little passion to continue the argument. What did he care? He intended to see his parents moved from this city anyway.

(@SLNC Im recycling your quote)

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2 hours ago, Awesomness said:

(@SLNC Im recycling your quote)

That is what they are for.

Yes, I also find it extremely appalling, that Laral seemingly sees this as a good excuse to destroy a family.

Edited by SLNC
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22 minutes ago, SLNC said:

That is what they are for.

Yes, I also find it extremely appalling, that Laral seemingly sees this as a good excuse to destroy a family.

Yeah, agreed.  It is some pretty skewed logic. 

Lirin might not be completely innocent, but he hinted that using that money for Kaladin's education was what the plan was all along, as Wistiow's way of taking care of his people's future.  I think he did anyway.  Either way, certainly a better use for it than whatever Roshone would have used it for.

Lirin did attempt to be friendly though, even after when, during Roshone's first appearance he looked at the people of Hearthstone as if they were crem scraped from his boot.  

Everything Roshone did to Kaladin's family was pretty horrible, and Laral's best defense was....Lirin spoke critically of him?  Even if she had thrown in the money that's not nearly enough to justify what Roshone did.  

So no, the idea of Laral as Kaladin's love interest really does not work for me at all.

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Just my 2 cents worth of thoughts;

1) Syladin - no. The bond they have makes them more like 1 soul than 2. Romance is not about merging your souls, but about souls touching/meeting (i feel weird saying, I'm an atheist but I hope the allegory holds). I think it is more like the Pan/Lyra bond in His Dark Marterials.

2) Laral - not unless there is a great deal more work put in and I don't think there will be. Roshone needs to die and Laral needs to move to Urithiru/near Kaladin and it seems that won't be likely. On top of that I viewed his understanding of her "being the woman he was never going to marry" as being more like true acceptance/resignation to an idea he knows he should have accepted long ago. He isn't bitter about it - he whispers it. I think his lack of passion when arguing with her is as much about his lack of feeling about her as it is with Roshone. He needs to understand why previous love interests don't/won't work and figure out what he wants instead.

3) Tarah - no - for simlar reasons to Laral - she is a former lover that he needs to realise he has moved on from. His needs and wants are different now to what they were when he knew her. I think what he needs to learn from that relationship is that he can put his burdens (ie his failures) down (represented by the rock he associates with Tien - not Syl imo) and that he can do his job and have a relationship.

4) Lyn - no shes a fan insert and unlikely to be a bigger role beyond scribe/squire

5) Rysn - no - likely to stay an interlude character that shows us other parts of Roshar. I also think there might be some resentment along the the lines of "why can he fly and I can't even walk", and guilt on Kaladin's part for the same problem. Rysn needs someone who won't make her feel inferior simply by existing but also can ignore the disability and see her underlying strength. Not sure that would happen with Kaladin who has a "saving people" thing. She can't help herself and make herself walk again whereas (eg) Shallan's problem is not permanent.

6) Jasnah - personally not a fan because Jasnah needs no man. Jasnah doesn't want to be defined by her sexuality (WoB). If she marries it will be for political reasons and I doubt her partner would be "king" - NB Queen Elizabeth II is married and her consort is Prince Phillip - he couldn't become king because he wasn't heir to the throne, he was simply her husband. Jasnah would likely do something similar if she marries at all. She doesn't need to though because she already has an heir in Gavinor. They also have very different moral codes that would need to be worked out. However this is the best of those mentioned so far imo

7) New character not yet met - possibly, though unlikely imo because BS has set up other options already and might as well use one of those. No evidence one way or another. IMO an Edgedancer or Lightweaver would be best. Can also see an Elsecaller working if their moral position was more like Kaladin's than Jasnah's.

8) Shallan. I know this thread started by saying Shalladin is dead, but I disagree. Shallan is still the best bet given the romantic build up, the huge amount of foreshadowing, the obvious "misunderstanding" on the boat that divides them, the fact that she doesn't know who she is or what she wants while she is fractured (and "has a long way to go WoB), the fact that neither Shallan nor Kaladin have actually changed their positions relating to each other from end WoR to the end OB (Shallan is still with Adolin and Kaladin still thinks they fit/is accepting of it) and that both still need a huge amount of growth as people before they are in a position for a sensible, decent, healthy romantic relationship. No I don't think Shadolin is healthy - for either Shallan or Adolin - indeed I fully expect them to have serious issues going forward. 

 

That being said, whilst I want him to have a romantic arc, I don't think he needs one. I just want him to have some more happiness and this is a reasonable means of him getting that. 

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5 hours ago, Wolven said:

Everything Roshone did to Kaladin's family was pretty horrible, and Laral's best defense was....Lirin spoke critically of him?  Even if she had thrown in the money that's not nearly enough to justify what Roshone did.  

Exactly! Had she said: "Your father stole from us", or  "your father didn´t save Roshone´s son" or any other thing really, then it would be a maybe. I get she may had the necessity to side with her husband, but did it by mentioning the most frivolous reason, even knowing Tien died because of all this!

So she made the best of the situation by being a good wife and landlady and gained respect from the people in town, and that´s commendable, but it also shows how she is comfortable in her position of relative power gained by marrying an old guy. She even says she needn´t saving, but she saved herself by an arranged marriage with a guy she dislikes...

She never questioned anything as a girl in the flashbacks, and I don´t think she changed as an adult.

Laral´s only good quality is being resilient. That´s an amazing quality, but I don´t think that´s enough.

Edited by Awesomness
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@Awesomness @PhineasGage @Wolven @SLNC

Alright, I never thought I'd take a more unpopular position than Shalladin :P  Not that the Laral dislike is surprising considering we get a fairly unsympathetic portrait of Laral from Kaladin's point of view.  Couple questions for you guys if you want to play (but no worries if you don't!):

  1. Why do you think Syl (the character) says she likes Laral after this conversation?
  2. Why do you think Brandon (the author) decided to tell us (the readers) that Syl likes Laral after this conversation, i.e. what was the reason for including that exchange and what was he trying to get across?

To respond to a couple points which I think are a bit unfair to my poor Laral....

6 hours ago, Wolven said:

Lirin did attempt to be friendly though, even after when, during Roshone's first appearance he looked at the people of Hearthstone as if they were crem scraped from his boot.  

Laral doesn't have perfect knowledge; she knows what she was told of these situations.  Roshone's first words to Lirin were "you were the one who let Wistiow die" or something like that, so you can infer that in addition to hearing how poorly Lirin was treating Roshone, she also heard that Lirin caused her father's death.  I think it's a bit unfair to expect the 12-13 year old Laral to be able to push this aside.  As a practical matter, she becomes essentially the hostage of Roshone's family (she has no other family), so as a survival mechanism (Stockholm Syndrome), she is going to side with Roshone because that's the only way to psychologically survive her current position.

1 hour ago, Awesomness said:

she is comfortable in her position of relative power gained by marrying an old guy. She even says she needn´t saving, but she saved herself by an arranged marriage with a guy she dislikes

Where do you get the idea that Laral had any choice in marrying Roshone? What else was she supposed to do instead of "saving herself" when she was, as I think we can assume, forced into marriage with a man half her age?  Run away?  Kill him?  Collapse into a ball for the rest of her life?  I'm not sure how Laral, a young girl who was made to marry this man, could have responded in a satisfactory way given the circumstances she had to work with.

1 hour ago, Awesomness said:

She never questioned anything as a girl in the flashbacks, and I don´t think she changed as an adult.

We have zero clue what Laral did or didn't question as we see everything from Kaladin's perspective.  He has very little of an idea as he barely interacted with her after Wistiow died.  To take a dark path (and maybe not that unlikely given Roshone seems like a very bad man and his son not much better) you don't know what physical and emotional abuse she may have suffered at the hands of these men.  We just don't know enough of what she has been through to judge her harshly; all we know is she survived a bad situation, ended up in a position where she is well respected by her staff, and has found a way to psychologically justify to herself Roshone's behavior. 

4 hours ago, PhineasGage said:

He needs to understand why previous love interests don't/won't work and figure out what he wants instead.

I agree with the fact the main reason we see Laral and Tarah in the same book is a way of pointing out he's moving beyond both of these crushes/romances (and Kaladin actually thinking about his feelings for both in connection with his feelings for Shallan while on the Reachers ship is particularly on the nose.)  Let's be real, it's 100% clear,um I mean, quite likely that Shallan is going to be Kaladin's actual romance for a bunch of other reasons, but that's not because Laral is an awful person, or Laral would make a patently bad match for Kaladin, or Kaladin has zero feelings for Laral and would leave her out in an Everstorm to bond with a voidspren, but because we've been given "the" match for Kaladin elsewhere in the books.  Spoilered below because this is long and Shalladin...

Spoiler

Here are a collection of non-attributed quotes from this thread which describe what posters want to see for Kaladin's love interest.  As I found on the other "now that it's not Shalladin so who" thread, we have a person who almost perfectly matches these attributes (and likely will even more so when she heals a bit more mentally); that person is Shallan :D

Quote

Kalidan needs someone who is happy. And someone who can make him happy [...] He always does best when he has someone to keep his spirits up like Tien did. I also think it would be great if she knew how to fight.

someone strong who disagrees with him very often, at least at first

Realistically, Kaladin needs not someone who is happy, but someone who is capable of happiness, and pointing out when he is being stupid, or has his head buried in his own backside.

Kaladin needs someone in his life who challenges his perceptions, first as a friend.

I could see Kaladin with another radiant that he can work with, one that is more battle-oriented than scholar-oriented [DS note: realize this doesn't fit Miss Shallan, but the rest does], so they can go out and help people. Ideally this person would not be a damsel in distress that needs protecting, so she can defend herself and he wouldn’t be constantly worried about her safety.

Quite a lot of people would like to see him with a fighter girl. I agree she needs to be badass, but I'd really hate to see someone military oriented and, well, simply too similar to him [...] It'd be so much more interesting to see a character with completely different powers that save the day when his are not applicable, so that they could complement each other. 

I hope for a lighteyes. 

This along with just the general vibe I get from her makes me think of the divine attributes learned and giving (Truthwatcher) and Wise and Caring ( Elsecaller).  [DS note: Lightweaver is directly in between Truthwatcher and Elsecaller on the surgebinder diagram]

I think Kaladin needs someone who is NOT a Windrunner. Someone who can remind him that life doesn't have to always be about serious things and sacrificing yourself all the time.  Someone who can challenge him when he is too stubborn and make him laugh. I like the idea of a scholar- Kaladin is unusully bright (his Father suggests this) and has intelligent parents which would lend him that way [...] They would be bright, stubborn, and a little bit irreverant.

Someone incredibly loyal and caring, but still able to keep up with him. Someone who knows how to deal with his depression. Someone who is truly a partner to him.

She can also understand loss

 

 

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10 minutes ago, Dreamstorm said:

@Awesomness @PhineasGage @Wolven @SLNC

Alright, I never thought I'd take a more unpopular position than Shalladin :P  Not that the Laral dislike is surprising considering we get a fairly unsympathetic portrait of Laral from Kaladin's point of view.  Couple questions for you guys if you want to play (but no worries if you don't!):

  1. Why do you think Syl (the character) says she likes Laral after this conversation?
  2. Why do you think Brandon (the author) decided to tell us (the readers) that Syl likes Laral after this conversation, i.e. what was the reason for including that exchange and what was he trying to get across?

I agree with the fact the main reason we see Laral and Tarah in the same book is a way of pointing out he's moving beyond both of these crushes/romances (and Kaladin actually thinking about his feelings for both in connection with his feelings for Shallan while on the Reachers ship is particularly on the nose.)  Let's be real, it's 100% clear,um I mean, quite likely that Shallan is going to be Kaladin's actual romance for a bunch of other reasons, but that's not because Laral is an awful person, or Laral would make a patently bad match for Kaladin, or Kaladin has zero feelings for Laral and would leave her out in an Everstorm to bond with a voidspren, but because we've been given "the" match for Kaladin elsewhere in the books.  Spoilered below because this is long and Shalladin...

  Reveal hidden contents

Here are a collection of non-attributed quotes from this thread which describe what posters want to see for Kaladin's love interest.  As I found on the other "now that it's not Shalladin so who" thread, we have a person who almost perfectly matches these attributes (and likely will even more so when she heals a bit more mentally); that person is Shallan :D

 

 

1. & 2. Because Syl really wants to get Kaladin a girlfriend. That is also why she alludes to the once planned marriage between them.

To the bolded section:

... I didn't say that :( only that he probably wouldn't lose much sleep over it if he wasn't there to protect her. He certainly would protect her if he was there.

To the spoiler:

Yes! And that is also why I made my case for that a few posts back :)

Edited by SLNC
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22 minutes ago, Dreamstorm said:

@Awesomness @PhineasGage @Wolven @SLNC

Alright, I never thought I'd take a more unpopular position than Shalladin :P  Not that the Laral dislike is surprising considering we get a fairly unsympathetic portrait of Laral from Kaladin's point of view.  Couple questions for you guys if you want to play (but no worries if you don't!):

  1. Why do you think Syl (the character) says she likes Laral after this conversation?
  2. Why do you think Brandon (the author) decided to tell us (the readers) that Syl likes Laral after this conversation, i.e. what was the reason for including that exchange and what was he trying to get across?

I guess I wasn't clear. I have no problem with Laral - she just isnt a love interest option imo. She's a former love and serves that purpose . I don't expect to see much/any more of her. 

In answer to your question:

1) Laral shows strength of character and leadership skills (look at the way her men won't go around her). Laral also stands up to Kaladin - something Syl values because it is something Kaladin values - nb he colours her perception of people at least as much as she influences his perception. I actually figured that the truth of Lirin's treatment of Roshone lies somewhere between what Kaladin tells us in flashbacks and what Laral says. Most truth is subjective ;)

2) I think he wants to show that Syl is part of Kaladin - and that she feels the same things he does but most importantly, that she can voice them even when he can't. Hence he can feel "agreement" with Shalladin, but Syl thinks he ought to fight for it. One day he'll realise that he and Syl are not separate in this sense and that her thoughts reflect his subconscious position on people. 

I actually quite like Laral personally - she has grown into adulthood in an appalling position (nb she was entirely alone and likely pushed/bullied/coerced into a marriage in which she had no real power) and has managed to survive anyway. She has an edge, a hardness to her that I find appealing but I don't think she'll be explored further. This was the close of that arc I feel. Kaladin no longer feels like he failed her.

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Will Tarah be coming back into the equation, do we think?

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4 minutes ago, Ookla the Melodious said:

Will Tarah be coming back into the equation, do we think?

I'd be surprised.

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15 minutes ago, PhineasGage said:

she was entirely alone and likely pushed/bullied/coerced into a marriage in which she had no real power

Not that I disagree with you, but do we know for a fact that she was coerced in any way? I don't find it impossible that she was the one to actually suggest the marriage. I mean since a young age she was pushing Kaladin to become a soldier and win a Shard, which to me shows that she's very much concerned with the social standing of her possible husband. And she pushes him to fight with the other boys and seems quite dispassionate when he loses, and she picks up and leaves. Also, in the scene with Rillir she seemed willing enough to play along with the berating of Kaladin, but broke at some point and pleaded with Rillir to stop, which shows to me that she was trying to appeal to him. And as you say, she was in an appalling position, would it be so strange to latch on Roshone in order to fulfill some cultural stereotype and enjoy whatever protection he could offer her?(okay, that last one is a bit weak but a cool possibility). What I mean to say is what if Laral was never the victim that escaped and took control, but had some control from the beginning and a general plan in her head for what she wants in a husband (someone with a good social standing but contollable enough).

Actually, if all of the above are true, it makes Laral a much more appealing character in my eyes. As for future romantic plot with Kaladin, I don't dismiss it but it would take quite a lot of effort put into it in order to make it believable and satisfactory, at least for me.

Edited by DimChatz
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2 hours ago, Awesomness said:

Exactly! Had she said: "Your father stole from us", or  "your father didn´t save Roshone´s son" or any other thing really, then it would be a maybe. I get she may had the necessity to side with her husband, but did it by mentioning the most frivolous reason, even knowing Tien died because of all this!

So she made the best of the situation by being a good wife and landlady and gained respect from the people in town, and that´s commendable, but it also shows how she is comfortable in her position of relative power gained by marrying an old guy. She even says she needn´t saving, but she saved herself by an arranged marriage with a guy she dislikes...

She never questioned anything as a girl in the flashbacks, and I don´t think she changed as an adult.

Laral´s only good quality is being resilient. That´s an amazing quality, but I don´t think that´s enough.

I also don't like the pairing because when they were younger, Laral was trying to push him into becoming a soldier and go off to war and win a shard blade.  I always took this to mean that she knew of the possibility that she would marry Kaladin, and being the wife of a surgeon was simply not good enough for her.  

Yes, she has had time to grow out of that, but something about her brief appearance in OB makes me feel her personality has not shifted to far from what it was.

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Just now, DimChatz said:

Not that I disagree with you, but do we know for a fact that she was coerced in any way? I don't find it impossible that she was the one to actually suggest the marriage.

I suspect that (a) she wouldn't have suggested the marriage to a much older man but I can't prove it, and (b) even if she suggested it, it was likely a result of her position in Vorin society - subjugation of women works best when the women essentially subjugate themselves because of societal norms. 

Remember that she still had a chaperone/nurse (or something like it) who was probably pushing the marriage because Laral would have had few marital options. She wanted Kaladin as a girl, so she wanted him to be an appropriate level to marry, but I don't think her goal was marriage per se. 

I personally feel pretty comfortable thinking that Laral had little agency in her choice of spouse as a result of Vorin culture, let alone the fact that Roshone could easily have prevented her meeting anyone else that she might have married. Laral seems reasonably bright - if that didn't occur to her then she is a fool. Given Roshone's behaviour, I doubt she had that much freedom. Many people will try to make the best of a situation rather than escape. Kaladin is the abnormal one in his position as a slave and his multiple escape attempts. Most people learn to accept their lots in life.

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4 minutes ago, PhineasGage said:

I suspect that (a) she wouldn't have suggested the marriage to a much older man but I can't prove it, and (b) even if she suggested it, it was likely a result of her position in Vorin society - subjugation of women works best when the women essentially subjugate themselves because of societal norms. 

Remember that she still had a chaperone/nurse (or something like it) who was probably pushing the marriage because Laral would have had few marital options. She wanted Kaladin as a girl, so she wanted him to be an appropriate level to marry, but I don't think her goal was marriage per se. 

I personally feel pretty comfortable thinking that Laral had little agency in her choice of spouse as a result of Vorin culture, let alone the fact that Roshone could easily have prevented her meeting anyone else that she might have married. Laral seems reasonably bright - if that didn't occur to her then she is a fool. Given Roshone's behaviour, I doubt she had that much freedom. Many people will try to make the best of a situation rather than escape. Kaladin is the abnormal one in his position as a slave and his multiple escape attempts. Most people learn to accept their lots in life.

You are probably right, but I think it could be a cool plausibility, but I don't have much to argue in favour of it.

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8 hours ago, Wolven said:

Everything Roshone did to Kaladin's family was pretty horrible, and Laral's best defense was....Lirin spoke critically of him?  Even if she had thrown in the money that's not nearly enough to justify what Roshone did.  

So no, the idea of Laral as Kaladin's love interest really does not work for me at all.

I'm right there with you. Laral gets a lot of defenders because her situation isn't great, but I'm not really willing to give her much credit because she succumbs to her situation rather than mastering it.

2 hours ago, Awesomness said:

So she made the best of the situation by being a good wife and landlady and gained respect from the people in town, and that´s commendable, but it also shows how she is comfortable in her position of relative power gained by marrying an old guy. She even says she needn´t saving, but she saved herself by an arranged marriage with a guy she dislikes...

She never questioned anything as a girl in the flashbacks, and I don´t think she changed as an adult.

Laral´s only good quality is being resilient. That´s an amazing quality, but I don´t think that´s enough.

I like how you singled out really Laral's only redeeming feature: her resilience. And she's absolutely resilient. She lost her father, the new citylord severed her connection with Kal, her 'betrothed', and then she lost her new betrothed and was forced to marry a man her father's age. She was left in Hearthstone with no family, few friend, and in a marriage of convenience but never love. She holds together remarkably well and seems to earn her role as citylord's wife.

However she never really changes through the course of what we've seen of her. She's still the same lighteyed girl who turned on Kaladin in the kitchen, and the respect of her hosuehold servants doesn't change that.

45 minutes ago, Dreamstorm said:

Alright, I never thought I'd take a more unpopular position than Shalladin :P  Not that the Laral dislike is surprising considering we get a fairly unsympathetic portrait of Laral from Kaladin's point of view.  Couple questions for you guys if you want to play (but no worries if you don't!):

  1. Why do you think Syl (the character) says she likes Laral after this conversation?
  2. Why do you think Brandon (the author) decided to tell us (the readers) that Syl likes Laral after this conversation, i.e. what was the reason for including that exchange and what was he trying to get across?

I will confess to being a Laral-hater. I didn't like how she treated Kal when they met after Roshone came but before his son died. I think it revealed more of herself than any other scene. She let her childhood friend get bullied and demeaned, and participated in it willingly in order to fit in with her new boy. She was perfectly willing to bend propriety when just around Kaladin, but can't stand to be seen with him otherwise.

As for your questions, I think Syl is picking up on what Kaladin thinks and feels with Laral. She senses his attraction and desire, but also recognizes his reticence as a defensive mechanism that she's trying to break down. This wasn't the first nor the last time she's pushed him towards some woman or another. I think it's just Syl doing what she's always done and trying to encourage Kal to be happy in the best way she knows how.

As for Brandon, that's a bit of a mystery. I'd guess that it was put there to make us feel more sympathetic towards Laral, which in my case has failed miserably. I'd attribute it to Brandon not wanting to make Laral into a scapegoat for Kal's troubles and to show the reader that we should also not make Laral into a scapegoat. Again, for me, this didn't work.

30 minutes ago, PhineasGage said:

Hence he can feel "agreement" with Shalladin, but Syl thinks he ought to fight for it. One day he'll realise that he and Syl are not separate in this sense and that her thoughts reflect his subconscious position on people. 

Yes, one day, and then the next day Shallan will reconcile her personalities, and the day after Adolin will revive Mayalaran, and by the end of the week Dalinar will have united the princes, kingdoms, peoples, splinters, realms, and shards, and worlds.

I'd love to see that day come, and I know it's coming, but oh man there's no reason it has to be soon. 

34 minutes ago, PhineasGage said:

She has an edge, a hardness to her that I find appealing but I don't think she'll be explored further. This was the close of that arc I feel. Kaladin no longer feels like he failed her.

I'm generally going to agree. There might be some Laral cameos, and there's not much point in giving Kaladin a little brother if we're not going to see more of his family so she might be there, but I don't see any more scenes between Kaladin and Laral that are deeper than what we got this book. If we do see her again, I'd expect another frosty confrontation with Kaladin, maybe with some regret for the past mixed in this time, but no declarations of love and no significant contributions to the plot.

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1 hour ago, Dreamstorm said:

@Awesomness @PhineasGage @Wolven @SLNC

 

  1. Why do you think Syl (the character) says she likes Laral after this conversation?
  2. Why do you think Brandon (the author) decided to tell us (the readers) that Syl likes Laral after this conversation, i.e. what was the reason for including that exchange and what was he trying to get across?

Laral doesn't have perfect knowledge; she knows what she was told of these situations.  Roshone's first words to Lirin were "you were the one who let Wistiow die" or something like that, so you can infer that in addition to hearing how poorly Lirin was treating Roshone, she also heard that Lirin caused her father's death.  I think it's a bit unfair to expect the 12-13 year old Laral to be able to push this aside.  As a practical matter, she becomes essentially the hostage of Roshone's family (she has no other family), so as a survival mechanism (Stockholm Syndrome), she is going to side with Roshone because that's the only way to psychologically survive her current position.

 

I don't think Laral is unintelligent though.  She was pretty young before her father died, but by that point she has to know what kind of man Lirin was.  Lirin and Wistiow were friends, I'm sure she's been around Lirin quite a bit.  Not just that, but it was in Lirin's best interest to keep Wistiow alive, both for the possibility of that money going for Kaladin's education and the possibility of him marrying Laral.  

Now, I seriously doubt that Roshone told Laral the reason for his exile, and I am sure any of his conversations about Lirin that Laral was around to hear were colored, but I also doubt that the man was at all pleasant to be around.  He's a miserable jerk and while I have no doubt he's more pleasant to Laral than he is to the people of Hearthstone, that attitude likely shows through.  So I think she was old enough, and knew enough to be able to make her own decision about what was going on.

It does seem that she has made the best of the situation though, and has stepped up to be a leader to the people of Hearthstone, and as well has a degree of control over Roshone.  For that she is to be commended.  However, the things she says to Kaladin, the way she tries to defend what Roshone did to his family, makes me feel that her attitude has not shifted all that much.

As for your questions, I think Syl is desperately trying to help Kaladin be more happy.  She knows that depression of his is part of what led to their bond becoming broke.  She wants to avoid that.  Also, she very much cares about Kaladin and truly wants him to be happy.  Laral is a woman she knows he once cared about, and sees her as an option, but that doesn't last very long as she's right back on Shallan before to long. 

Maybe Syl sees or senses something deep within Laral that is still good despite her attitude, I will allow that's possibile.  

As for what Brandon was trying to say, I have no clue.  I imagine we have not seen the last of Laral so I think we will find out.

Edited by Wolven
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I think that Kaladan will not end up with any of the characters we know except possibly Shallan. I want there to be a new character introduced. A character who isn't made for Kaladin but serves a spot in the plot. But will work for Kal. I'm not sure but I think there is a shipping for Kal with EVERY Woman in Rosahr... At least thats how it seams. To me that means none of them work but people still want something to happen.

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I don't get Laral. I thought Brandon couldn't be blunter with sinking this ship, making it absolutely clear, that neither of them has any feelings at all for each other. I mean, he can always get a scuba diving rescue team, but then why bother with it in the first place.

What annoys me most about Laral, is that she not only doesn't even give a hint that she regrets anything. No, instead she goes straight on to judging Kal. I mean, seriously, she was so mean to him and now the first thing she can think of is that he ruined her floor? And she can suddenly forget everything Roshone did and instead concentrate on how terrible Kaladin is because he punched him once for good reason? How far can you go with double standards??

I am especially bitter about this ship because I kind of liked it before OB...

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2 hours ago, Ookla the Melodious said:

Will Tarah be coming back into the equation, do we think?

Yes, though not as a serious interest I think, just tying up the loose ends.

Someone else pointed this out, but I think Tarah is already there. In the scene where Shallan is training as a spy, she describes a women who dresses unusually (but similar to how Kaladin describes Tarah's dress) who seems to be looking for someone. My guess is that Tarah has heard of Kaladin Stormblessed, and is keeping her eye out for him. 

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27 minutes ago, Ailvara said:

I don't get Laral. I thought Brandon couldn't be blunter with sinking this ship, making it absolutely clear, that neither of them has any feelings at all for each other. I mean, he can always get a scuba diving rescue team, but then why bother with it in the first place.

What annoys me most about Laral, is that she not only doesn't even give a hint that she regrets anything. No, instead she goes straight on to judging Kal. I mean, seriously, she was so mean to him and now the first thing she can think of is that he ruined her floor? And she can suddenly forget everything Roshone did and instead concentrate on how terrible Kaladin is because he punched him once for good reason? How far can you go with double standards??

I am especially bitter about this ship because I kind of liked it before OB...

To be fair, what was she supposed to say - "you have a shardblade, you are so cool!" ?

Kal came and found Laral at an extremely stressful moment, he is pushing around Roshone (both in the sense of making demands and also literally; also, at this point it seems like Laral is in control), and basically his first words to her undermine the immense effort it must have taken to survive after her father died and she became essentially a prisoner in her own house.

I don't know if Laral is a good person or not, and she certainly wasn't nice to Kal there. But its a difficult moment, and I think things could grow back given the right environment. It seemed like Laral was trying to protect people in the town, and doing a pretty decent job of it - that is a point in her favor, and something that certainly would make Kaladin take notice.

That being said, surely there must be many, many women that Kaladin doesn't already know that would be better for him.

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8 minutes ago, Calyx said:

To be fair, what was she supposed to say - "you have a shardblade, you are so cool!" ?

More like, "Hi Kal, I'm glad you're not dead. / I know we didn't part on best  terms, but it's been a long time, can we forget about it?  / It's not cool to beat my husband, but he had it coming so let's leave it. / Are you going to help us with rebuilding?" sth of the sorts

Edited by Ailvara
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