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Chapter 61



Welcome to my liveblog of Rhythm of War! Index post here. Beware of spoilers.

Chapter 61 (Oil and Water)
Title: I presume this is about the stormlight/voidlight/lifelight that Navani is going to discover don’t mix well? 
Icons: Betab and Shash, associated with the essences of oil- and water-based liquids this may be the most straightforward one we’ve had yet.
Epigraph: Why are we talking about sand now? It’s the sand itself that’s interesting so it’s not anything to do with cymatics. Presumably Venli was shown something by El, Sand from… Braize? Somewhere else offworld? It’s the main text not the undertext, so it’s her words.

So, “corrupted” spren. Are they really Sja-Anat’s progeny? I would default to trusting Syl in this case to recognize what’s been done, but “corruption” has been an inaccurate term both in books and as explained by Brandon, so there are other possibilities. I’m especially curious, though, about whether the corruption took place before or after the spren were captured in the spanreed gems. That would make a big difference in what is possible to interfere with.

I’m surprised that Kaladin didn’t try to deliver the spanreeds via Dabbid. It’s good that Syl can analyze them at least to some extent, but we already had the first part of the heist movie. You can’t leave us hanging before the tricky handoff scene!

Yes, Kaladin, good plan. Let’s jump off a cliff and hope that our flying powers reactivate before we hit the bottom. I’m not sure why I didn’t think of something that brilliant, but at least you’ve identified a drawback: you would be gone on a mission and unable to help. Yes, that’s definitely the only thing wrong.

Oh, Kal gets to use the spider man glove, or however we want to characterize it. Stick spanreed rubies all over it, to give enough power, and he’ll have the gaudiest personal floatation device ever. I’m excited to see this in action. Brandon just loves to put Kal in awkward situations, doesn’t he?

Ooo, show off Elhokar’s blade to hurt Navani. That’s an effective ploy, and once again spren make it really hard to keep a poker face. Sorry, Navani. Raboniel is not fooled.

Hm, shardblades can cut through the shield, not just in the “pass through it” sense, but removing chunks of the visible light. That’s unexpected and a cool interaction. Fortunately, it’s regenerating. Ah, Raboniel thinks it’s fascinating as well. I’m in good company.

I thought she was living up to her Lady of Wishes reputation, but I’m inclined to believe her that she genuinely didn’t know the provenance of that Blade. Her reaction reads to me like frustration at finding an unexpected variable ruin her planned manipulations.

So the Fused hear the screaming of dead blades, and some of them are insane enough to enjoy that? Eeew.

Oh, the shield is regenerating glass, not a hardlight construct. All the better to soulcast things with…
I am amused that the crystal pillar is therefore encased in glass just like the currency in use throughout Alethkar (and other nations, but presumably not all of them, even ignoring Shinovar). It’s like one of those giant checks that get delivered for publicity stunts. “Here is the biggest Broam in the world!”

Oh, maybe not quite. It’s in a half-state, according to Navani. Neither glass nor air. Still, the resemblance remains.

I’m uncomfortable with how much progress Navani is helping Raboniel to make. “Oh, just add a third ingredient that can bind them together.” 

I’m excited that this forced isolation means Navani will be acting as a scholar not just a patron. She’ll discover that she does in fact have a talent for these things beyond paying skilled people to do good work.


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