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  1. 353 points
    Important note: This list would be far less complete if not for the efforts of everyone who helped me compile it. Specifically thankyou to: Awesomeness Summoned, Delightful, Argent, PorridgeBrick, Kurkistan, Quiver, Green Hoodie Mistborn, Senor Feesh, Observer, ccstat, Swimmingly, Alvron, Metacognition, The Only Joe, GreyPilgrim, Aether, jasonpenguin, Mailliw73, Moodle, Tempus, Baine, Kobold King, LeftInch, Sir Jerric, Tensoon, Ashiok, Theorymaker, Seonid, Shaggai, TheYoungBard, Curiosity, Snoopy, Voidus, Frosted Flakes, Kasimir, Shallan. (Let me know if I missed you.) Hokay, for those who want to know the ranks, I looked through everyone who had at least 10 posts. Here are my findings. 10000+ God Beyond 9000 9999 Adonalsium 8500 8999 Hero of Ages 8192 8499 The Broken One 7800 8191 Shard 7500 7799 Splintered Shard 7200 7499 Splinter 6800 7199 Dragon 6400 6799 Stormfather 6000 6399 Herald 5700 5999 Sliver 5350 5699 Nightwatcher 5000 5349 Worldhopper 4750 4999 God of Color 4500 4749 Lord Ruler 4250 4499 Unmade 4096 4249 Dawnshard 3761 4095 Prime 3500 3760 Lerasium Mistborn 3250 3499 Bondsmith 3000 3249 Voidbringer 2750 2999 Knight Radiant 2500 2749 Most Ancient 2250 2499 Steel Inquisitor 2048 2249 Mistborn 1900 2047 Tarachin Superstar 1800 1899 Dawnsinger 1700 1799 Rambleman 1600 1699 Savant 1550 1599 Gerontarch 1500 1549 Midnight Essence 1450 1499 Listener 1400 1449 Enefel 1370 1399 Kalad's Phantom 1338 1369 Compounder 1337 So l337 Hoid Can't Compete 1300 1336 Surgebinder 1260 1299 Radiant Squire 1220 1259 Kandra 1180 1219 Twinborn 1145 1179 Returned 1111 1144 Scadrian Waffle Cook 1080 1110 Stone Shaman 1050 1079 Cryptic 1024 1049 Honorspren 1000 1023 Sentient Awakened Object 980 999 Truthless 950 979 Highprince 920 949 Worldbringer 890 919 Full Feruchemist 860 889 Full Shardbearer 830 859 Shardbearer 800 829 Seer 777 799 Spinner 760 776 Wyrn the King 730 759 Elantrian 700 729 Originator 667 699 Svrakiss 666 Torturer of Heralds 650 665 Shade 625 649 Soulcaster 600 624 Forger 575 599 Dakhor Monk 550 574 Lord Prelan 512 549 King's Wit 496 511 Son of Honor 475 495 Vanisher 450 474 King's Tester 425 449 Ghostblood 400 424 Envisager 375 399 Artifabrian 350 374 Ferring 325 349 Stormwarden 300 324 Bloodsealer 278 299 Silent Gatherer 256 277 Misting 225 255 Arbiter 200 224 Gyorn 180 199 High Prelan 160 179 Oldblood 145 159 Cobalt Guard 128 144 Hazekiller 110 127 Forescout 100 109 Houselord 90 99 Babsk 80 89 Prelan 75 79 Arteth 70 74 Idrian Monk 64 69 Obligator 56 63 Lighteyes 50 55 Grand 45 49 Noble 40 44 Crew Leader 32 39 Ardent 25 31 Pahn Kahl 20 24 Awakened Object 16 19 Noble-Blooded 10 15 Bridgeman 7 9 Spearman 5 6 Darkeyes 2 4 Skaa 0 1 Spren --- -1 -2 Negaspren -3 -5 Lifeless -6 -10 Hoed -15 -19 ? Beheaded Inquisitor -20 -24 ? Rotting Chull Carcass -24 -25 Lamespren -26 -100 Zucchini -101 and below Chasmfiend Corpse Note: negative reputation titles are no longer obtainable due to downvotes having been removed. I'll update this as we learn more We now know them all! I like the new levels. Good work Chaos Please don't ask me how long that took. Current lowest Unknown rep: nonexistent. We're so close to getting them all =D Edit: Wooohooo first popular post Later edit: For the record, at the time I added that comment 10 rep was a little more exciting Another edit: The lower rep ranks have changed at some point, I don't know where all of the new boundaries are yet.
  2. 337 points
    We have some exciting news to announce today. So far in order to obtain some unpublished works of Brandon's, you'd have to email him through his sites, and his assistants would distribute them. Well now you won't need to wait for that, because now we will be in charge of distributing out Aether of Night! All you have to do is post in this topic (you'll need a 17S account, but that's it), and our staff will PM you the document. Once we do this, we'll remove your post here. We'll be using this topic as a to-do list for requests. Ideally since we have lots of staff members, we will get this out to you soon, within a week or two. With this change we are unpasswording the Aether of Night board, as now all of you will have access to it if you want it. You may discuss Aether of Night in the Cosmere Theories board, but tag your topic title with [Aether]. We hope you're excited about this, so many of you will be able to get this text in a much more obvious way now! You will receive a .docx file, and if you need to convert it into a .pdf or .epub, there are many converters to do that for you. (We are not distributing the prose version of White Sand, as that will continue to be distributed in Brandon's newsletters.) Thank you Dragonsteel for letting 17S do this! Edit as of March 16th, 2022: This is all still going! We've gone through over 250 pages of replies distributing. It's just that we remove posts here once we send them out.
  3. 209 points
    Okay so I saw a few of the Explain a Film Plot badly things earlier and thought they were funny, so I decided to do them for the cosmere books. I think some of them are funny, so I decided to share them. Hopefully it'll at least get a few laughs. If anyone has any more or any different ones, please post them. Spoilers for the cosmere, obviously. I'll label each one just in case though. The Final Empire: Well of Ascension: Hero of Ages: Alloy of Law: Shadows of Self: Bands of Morning: Warbreaker: Elantris: I couldn't think of any for Stormlight, hopefully someone else can [EDIT by Moderator: This topic originally was solely cosmere but has moved beyond that, so I moved this to Entertainment Discussion.]
  4. 172 points
    SPOILERS AND ADDED INFORMATION: I had posted other bits of this else where in 2020, but consolidated it all here in this post This theory and post came out before Rhythm of War, but updates have been made to include information from ROW SA5 Prologue: This is not discussed to avoid spoilers, but SA5 Prologue has some interesting information --- Weird Questions: 1) TALN BREAKING SEEMS ODD What broke Taln? He is crazy and insensate for 4000 years and then one day he says "No thank you". What could have broke Taln? And Taln returned before the Everstorm crossed into the physical realm, so it can't be that the Everstorm freed Taln. Yes the Everstorm was in the Cognitive, but all the doom and gloom seemed to be about the Everstorm being pulled in the Physical Realm by Eshoni and her team. Since Taln returns at the end of The Way of Kings, then Taln must return in a way that is not related to Eshoni. And as I mentioned before, I don't think it makes sense that Odium suddenly found a way to break Taln after 4000 years of trying. Edit: we later got a WOB that Taln did not break 2) DAVAR FAMILY CONNECTIONS Why was the Davar family so connected to secret societies despite being a Vaden house of little note? They have connections to the Ghostbloods and the Ghostbloods have handed them a confirmed soulcaster AND possibly a Seon box. Why? And it seems Skybreakers may have been visiting as well for "reasons". And finally, Mraize seems to know the Davar family well enough to recognize the name immediately. The Davar's would need to be pretty active for that name recognition to be so apparent. 3) CRYPTICS, SKYBREAKERS, AND FAMILY FIGHTS Why did the cryptic go to Shallan as a child? Lift was chosen due to her strange connection to Cultivation, but why Shallan? And why twice? And what were Shallan's parents fighting about? Shallan remembers her parents having huge fights over Shallan's future starting from a very young age. What was that about? Connected to that, why is an dark influence attacking the Davar family? Why is Heleran given a shardblade and brought into the skybreakers? No other Skybreaker acolyte was given a dead-blade and sent to war (that we know of), so why is Helaran so non-standard? 4) MAMA DAVAR IN THE KNOW Why was Shallan's mother so quick to try and kill "one of them". How does she know "them" so clearly? Why would she have such a quick and radical reaction? 5) MORE SECRETS What is Shallan's last secret. There is still something horrible in Shallan's past, and this has something to do with a Seon box and whatever Radiant was created to protect Shallan from. What is worse than killing testament? We also have strange internal thoughts from Shallan from WOR in Chapter 10: "The world ended; and Shallan was to blame". This thought has never been explained. What did Shallan do to end the world? "The world ended, and Shallan was to blame.- Words of Radiance, Chapter 10. Mentioned by @honorblades Another strange but overlooked instance occurs in TWoK when Shallan almost summons her Shardblade: If this is indeed Patters/Testement, then why would that Spren ask "What are you?" Testament should full-well know "what" Shallan is in terms of her being a human or a semi-radiant or anything like that. If this voice is Testament, then asking "What are you?" is very odd in my opinion. Shallan answers "I am terrified", but to me that always seemed ... not what the voice was asking Shallan. I always felt there was more to this that simply speaking truths. 6) THE FAMILY SAFE AND GLOWING LIGHTS ARE IMPORTANT (main data point for me creating this theory) People are very quick to discount Shallan's recollection of Lin Davar placing a glowing soul into a safe. I have always been very confused as to why Shallan is taken as "lying" to herself in this scene. Shallan has no reason to lie about the item being her mother's soul instead of a Shardblade. Lin Davar acted extremely quickly in that situation and made sure to place the item in that safe before dealing with any other issues. That to me is extremely telling. Why would Lin think the Shadblade wouldn't disappear eventually whenever Shallan dismissed it? Why would Lin think the Shardblade would stay in a safe if he managed to place it there quickly? Why would Lin so quickly run to place the item in the safe in the first place? Why is there an unused safe in that room? And then why do Shallan and Lin seem to continually see light coming from that safe for years and years? None of that vibes with "it is just a blade and Shallan is lying to herself" in any way. I just don't get it. Shallan having a Shardblade is not in anyway covered up by this lie, nor is the lie that Shallan killed her spren hidden by this lie either? There is no mental cover-up being done by Shallan making up a lie here. It seems everyone else dismisses Shallan, including Pattern, in favour of "Lynn put a sword in there". EDIT FOR ROW: Then in ROW we get the timeline, and this does not hold up to scrutiny either. Shallan says her father put the item into the safe. WoR Shallan thinks that was a soul, but Pattern convinces her she is misremembering and that the item was a dead spren-blade. But that can't be a dead spren blade because Shallan has not unbonded Testament yet. Shallan does not think that a spren is trapped in that safe and we know this because Shallan then leaves to go speak with her spren in the garden AFTER the item is placed in the safe. Shallan acts immediately as a child in a way that doesn't even consider that her "blade" is in that safe. It just doesn't make sense to think a blade was placed into that safe based on the reactions of the two witnesses involved (which we learn Pattern is not one of) We take it from Pattern that Shallan is wrong here in her memory. However, In ROW we learn that Pattern is NOT an eyewitness to what went down in that room. Pattern sure has a lot of opinions about what Shallan saw, but Pattern was not actually there in the room and cannot actually know what Shallan saw go into the safe. Pattern assumed Shallan is lying to herself as Pattern sees many other lies around that event. But Pattern has no knowledge about who Mother-Davar was, what the safe was for, or why Skybreaker/Ghostbloods may have been in the home. Pattern is not a credible source of information on the events of that day. Shallan is the only living witness, and the actions of her father are consistent with the understanding Shallan had as a child. Shallan too noticed her father staring at the direction of the safe and the light. Only later in life is Shallan told again and again that her memory of those events are wrong by people who were not there. Both Lin and Shallan believe something is in the safe, and a sword does not match the other data points we have. There is "light" in that safe, and it is leaking out over time. The box is something. The light was something. Pattern is making assumptions and is wrong about this history with the safe. And why does Shallan see a glowing light coming from the box? Is it a soul like she believes? We learn in RoW that no herald soul can be trapped completely, and that the light of a herald will slowly leak out (is that what Shallan was seeing her whole childhood come out of the safe?). Is it her mother's soul escaping slowly to Braize? Or maybe could it be a perfect gem with Mishram inside? Who knows? But it is something. We have seen other glowing lights (Dawnshard and Dalinar hearing TwoK), so is she just mad, or did she really see something? Whatever it is, it does not make sense that Shallan thinks Testament is trapped in the safe if Shallan went and yelled at Testament after her mother was killed. Something was put into that safe, and to me the most likely answer is "her mother's soul" 7) HOID and MIDDLEFEST Hoid is downright shocked to see child-Shallan at the Middlefest celebration. Hoid sees something, but that something is unclear. Shallan does not have a regular active sprenbond at that age, so he did not simple something like with Kaladin. Perhaps Hoid saw Odium's touch as Hoid says Shallan fights something unnatural. Or maybe Hoid say a dead blade or the Cryptic team that watched Shallan. Or perhaps Shallan is so obviously a part of Chanarach that Hoid was gobsmacked by the resemblance. Maybe even Shallan is noticeably different than other Rosharans due to her strange parentage. ---- It All Put Together - A Timeline 1) JAH KAVED Chararach settled in the Davar estate in rural Jah Kaved. Chanarach is involved in several of the secret societies of Roshar just like most of the other heralds we have seen. Chanarach learns of the theory that a return of surgebinders will bring about a desolation. Chararach is completely terrified of returning to Braize and supports the culling of nascent surgebinding. 2) COMMUNICATION NETWORKS Chanarach commands a fair bit of influence and even has a Seon to communicate off world. It is unclear who knows who Chanarach is, but as she did settle in a rural area it is likely Chana's identity is not common knowledge even within secret societies (similar to Restares and Amaram). Chana exerts some form of influence and stays in-the-know with investiture theory and is able to contact others on Roshar or off-world. 3) CREATING THE SAFE Chana tries to devise a way to never return to Braize. She creates a special kind of safe that her soul could be placed in to. She thinks it will entirely prevent a return or will greatly delay her return to Braize. Chana has no way to test this as there are no herald-souls or returned-souls to experiment with. Possibly, the safe is akin to the Seon box in design or the safe may even actually be the Seon Box Shallan remembers playing with as a child? At some point, Chana tells Lin Davar what to do in case she is ever killed (place her soul into the box). In ROW we learn Kelek has some knowledge on this herald soul-leakage issue, so perhaps he was also involved in the Soul Box experiments in some way. 4) SHALLAN IS BORN Chanarach eventually has a daughter and names that daughter after her friend Shalash (Shallan says she was named after Shalash). Shallan may not be a "typical" offspring. She seems to be different from her brothers in some meaningful way. Perhaps Shallanis a cutting of Chararach or maybe Shallan conceived through some form or parthenogenetic process. EDIT: In a later WOB we learned that that non-returned Cognitive Shadows have had children Edit: In a later WOB we learned that Heralds can have children but it is complicated and effortful to do. 5) SHALLAN IS DETECTED BY SPREN The Cryptics find out that one of the heralds has children or they discover a weird child who stands-out and is similar to the child of a Returned. The Cryptics send a delegation to investigate (WOB confirms heralds can have children though maybe it is difficult). At the same time, an unmade is drawn to the family. Testament begins to bond Shallan similar to what happened with Lift. Shallan eventually discovers what her mother is by playing with a Seon box at the Davar estate. The unmade's influence increases in an attempt to get the Herald to go insane and potentially get herself killed by Lin Devar or Shallan. 6) SHALLAN IS DETECTED BY SKYBREAKERS Shallan is discovered to be a surge binder by her mother. Her mother, fearing a return to Braize, refers to Shallan as "one of them". Note that Chanarach does not seem surprised that surgebinders are real. Chanarach has an absolute PTSD breakdown and attacks her daughter. Lin, who likely knew, steps in and Shallan is able to kill her mother in self defence. Lin Devar takes something and locks it away in the safe. We are told this is the Shardblade and Shallan's mother's soul. Shallan goes to the garden to scream at Testament and break her bond AFTER Testament is supposedly locked away in the safe. This timeline does not make sense even if we believe Testament could escape the safe. Why does Shallan believe her spren was trapped but also then in the garden? And how is Testament-blade = her mother's soul? There isn't a connection there logically. 7) CHANA'S SOUL IS PLACED IN THE SAFE Shallan realized what she has done and perhaps even realized that she has sent her mother back to damnation. Shallan goes to Testament and breaks her bond. It is possible Testament told her more here as well. Shallan then begins to repress everything since Shallan has, in her mind, done the most evil act in history. "The world ended, and Shallan was to blame.- Words of Radiance, Chapter 10. Mentioned by @honorblades 8) CORRUPTION SETS IN Lin Devar begins to be corrupted even more. Lin also has mental guilt and wrestles with killing his herald-wife to save his daughter. He beings to protect Shallan at all costs for reasons that may be more than just guilt. Then Davar family hell ensues. The ghostbloods continue to cultivate the family. The Ghostbloods may not believe a herald could be killed by Lin or may not know she was a Herald. The Cryptics stay with Shallan as they don't blame her for what happened. They are still curious about what Shallan is and are researching what happens to a bonded-deadeye to its original radiant. The dark influence in the house may be more than an unmade as well. One of Chana's divine attributes is "obedient". I think this is significant. Lin is driven to rage every time one of his children will not obey him, and the word obey is emphasized many times. It may be possible the Lin's rage was a dark consequence of something Chana was doing, the safe's magical effects, or something else. It is also possible that Lin thought his children would inherit the divine attribute, and the fact they dont obey him drives him to rage. 9) BRAIZE AND SOUL LEAKAGE Chanarach returns to Braize. It may have taken some time for her to get to Braize. It seems the soul is leaking out of the safe over time (ROW: as we see with Jezrian in the gem). Or maybe it takes 5 years to find Chana on Braize since arrival was unexpected and because in earlier returns the heralds were able to "hide" for some time. Either way, the other heralds do not know that that has happened as they cannot detect the pain-bond while on Roshar. Edit: Ishar created the oathpact so he may be able to sense changes in it. 10) HOID SEES SHALLAN Shallan, with no bond, goes to Middlefest. Wit's magic or memory allow him to detect that there is something very strange about Shallan. Wit somehow knows what Shallan fights "is not truly natural" and encourages her to make a path for the light. It is unclear what Wit saw, but he knew more than the fact she was a surgebinder (even though she's actually a deadeye-binder at the time). 11) CHANA CAPTURED AND BROKEN Chanarach is eventually found on Braize. For some reasonChana breaks or gives in. It may have taken a while or been immediate. Chana is not known to return to Roshar. 12) TALN RETURNS WITHOUT BREAKING THE OATH Taln returns to Roshar completely insane and without breaking. What happens to Chanarach is unknown. All assume Taln broke. 13) SHALLAN BEGINS TO REMEMBER THAT HER MOTHER WAS A HERALD Radiant is created from memories of Shallan's mother. Or potentially, Radiant is somehow part of Chanarach. Radiant dresses in the same blue and red warrior outfit as the Herald Chanarach in artworks. Radiant is Shallan's repressed memories of who her mother was. It is also possible that Radiant is in someway Shallan's mother (connection mumbo jumbo and cognitive shadow stuff along with cultivation weirdness possibilities) Here is a description of Radiant: “She [Radiant] had chosen to wear her vakama; the traditional Vaden’s warrior clothing. It was similar to the Alethi takama but the skirt was pleeted instead of straight. She wore a loose matching coat with a tight vest and shirt beneath. The bright clothing features vibrant blues embroidered over reds with gold woven between and it had trim on the skirt” Here is Chanarach: 14) TESTEMENT MEMORIES Shallan is forced to confront what happened with Testament, and Radiant begins to see that she must help Shallan deal with her final truth. [Option 1 ]Shallan knows she killed a herald and that she sent her mother to damnation - possibly ending the world and starting the final desolation. [Option 2] Shallan does not know her mother was a herald, but will put that together in regards to the "hole" in her memory" ------------ MOST COMMON CRITICISM DISCUSSED: OATHPACT MEMBERS SENSING THAT A HERALD HAS RETURNED TO BRAIZE ABOUT ISHAR'S POWERS; THIS IS RELEVANT FOR SA5 PROLOGUE BUT NOT A SPOILER IN ANY WAY Heralds typically do not sense when another Herald returns to Braize as we see in TWoK. However, It is possible that Ishar is an exception to this. It is possible Ishar can sense a return due to the fact Ishar actually forged the Oathpact and was a Bondsmith even before leaving Ashyn. However, Ishar being able to detect herald-returns isn't a problem for the Kelek timeline in TWoK or the Chana timeline later on. Timeline of Renouncing the Honourblades: Taln Dies. Other Heralds know this has happened somehow. Most Heralds finish their fighting (not Kelek) Most Heralds head to the meeting spot (not Kelek) Ishar convinces the group that because Taln has died, the Oathpact will hold without anyone else returning to Braize. Ishar implies his plan relies on Taln and the fact Taln has never ushered a desolation before The Heralds determine that humanity can likely clean up the remaining Fused. The Heralds lock down Roshar from Braize Ishar leaves the group while Kelek is still fighting. Ishar assumed Kelek will survive any further skirmishes. Jezrian waits to inform Kelek or what went down. Because Ishar already left, Jezrian has no way of knowing if Kelek will come to the meeting point. Kelek shows up. To me, it seems Ishar knew Kelek was alive at the time of the Oathpact Renunciation. However, once Ishar took off, then Jezrian had to sit around and wait without anymore information. We learn in RoW that the Oathpact closes off Braize even with Fused still battling, so my proposed timeline can hold water. In conclusion, it is possible that Ishar was fully aware of which Heralds had died, and that the other Heralds lost access to that information as soon as Ishar separated from the group. Edit November 2022: It is also possible that the ability to sense the oathpact changed after Honor died.
  5. 170 points
    Greetings, friend. You may have noticed that many of the illustrations in the Stormlight Archives contain strange markings. I have determined that these markings are writing, and I have undertaken to decipher their messages. Crazy? Perhaps. But these markings are not simply decorative. They contain information about the Cosmere, hidden in plain sight. In The Way of Kings, we are introduced to the Alethi script. This is the writing system used by female scribes and scholars in Alethkar, understand? It shows up in the labels of Navani’s Notebook: Since the novel was first published in English, the labels were also “translated” into English, but Alethi letters were used to preserve the feel of the original diagrams. Each symbol stands for one letter – however Alethi has some letters that are not found in English (Th, Sh, Ch), and English has some letters that are not found in Alethi (C, Q, X, W). In Words of Radiance, we learn more about the languages of Roshar. Alethi script reappears, with greater variety. Navani’s Notebook again provides straightforward diagram labels directly transliterated from English into Alethi: (Translation credit goes to cris34b: http://www.17thshard.com/forum/topic/6418-navanis-notebook-page-406-translation/?hl=navani) Shallan’s sketchbook provides more cryptic text, friend. First spotted and translated by jcoop513, the text here is hidden, and is written phonetically so that each letter is an approximation of how it sounds when spoken aloud. Based on the context, this is most likely a page of Jasnah's notes that Shallan appropriated to use as sketchpaper. Note that the transliteration of Jasnah's writing is very different from that of Navani's. Read aloud, the passage would be thus: Translation efforts are ongoing at http://www.17thshard.com/forum/topic/6619-shallans-drawing-page-354-alethi-script-translation-spoilers/. KalynaAnne traced over the partially-obscured letters by hand and was able to reconstruct several missing words: http://www.17thshard.com/forum/topic/6487-thaylen-and-alethi-glyph-translation-glyph-key-revised-418/?p=233114 Alethi is not the only language spoken on Roshar. That would be crazy. The Map of the Southern Frostlands introduces us to the written language used in Thaylenah: As with Alethi script, the Thaylen in this illustration is simply transliterated English, and can be deciphered using the following key: Thaylen people are renown for smashing their consonants together when they speak, and this is reflected in their writing. Written Thaylen has no vowels and is written vertically, understand? Both the Alethi and Thaylen pages include numerals. Just as many different nations on Earth employ Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3, etc.) is quite possible that all Vorin peoples (indeed perhaps most inhabitants of Roshar!) use the same numerals, even if their written languages differ. The numbers are written as follows: And now we come to glyphs, friend. Glyphs are written in syllables, with each syllable corresponding to a certain subcomponent of the glyph. Glyphs can be written three ways: a “standard” blocky form with syllables somewhat similar to Thaylen consonants, a “radial” form in which the glyph is warped to form a circular shape, and a “calligraphic” form in which the glyph can be warped into any shape. Often, the shape of a calligraphic glyph is reminiscent of the word it contains. Extra lines that do not represent syllables can be added to enhance the effect. For instance, a bookseller might advertise the name of his shop with a glyph shaped to resemble a book, understand? Many men in Alethkar are illiterate, relying on their wives or sisters to read documents to them aloud, but most can recognize certain important glyphs based on their shape alone. Alethi glyphs are not simply transliterations of English, but represent words in the Alethi language. The esteemed jofwu has compiled images of all known glyphs in another thread. Edit: The next bit is obsolete, as of Oathbringer. See p.519 for a key directly from the Calligrapher's Guild, courtesy of Nazh. My efforts to decipher the Alethi glyphs are ongoing, friend, but I present here what I speculate thus far: Please refer to the further pages in this thread for the latest developments in the 17th Shard's ongoing efforts to decipher these glyphs. Original first post, for posterity:
  6. 154 points
    I am pleased to announce that there's an entirely new set of reputation titles. Check out under your name to the left of your post and see what title you are--I imagine it will be very different. Why did the ranks get altered? Well, I hadn't ever really expected people to rise through the ranks so fast. Obviously this site isn't going anywhere, and five years down the line, it wouldn't make sense for all of us to be Adonalsium, now would it? So this new scheme was designed to be much more sustainable for years to come. It's also designed to have a ton more progression than the old system. In the old scheme, you became Shard at 128, and then new ranks appeared at 256, 512, and 1024. Not so much progression. Considering how many people are in the 1-500 range, there needed to be a lot more ranks. And boy, there are a lot of new ranks. In the old scheme we had less than 20 ranks total. In this new system, there are 102 positive reputation levels. There's also no exponential growth on new ranks--it's much more linear, with the differences between levels gradually increasing. I hope you find the new system fun! There are a lot of very powerful and cool titles now, but there are also delightfully obscure cosmere titles, and some that are just plain silly. Hehehe. And of course, now with a properly large list of ranks, it's time to complain about their ridiculousness. Some of the promotions are... interesting, to say the least. Discuss yours in the These Stupid Ranks topic.
  7. 152 points
    While reading the Stormlight Archive books, I realized that spren are 'real life' emoticons. So naturally I made some emoticons involving spren. To use an emote, copy the link next to it in the parentheses and paste it into your post. You can also right-click the link and choose "Copy Link Location", then paste it in your message. 17thshard.com forums allow you to load pictures into your posts by pasting the URL of the image into the post's content. It may be helpful to save a .txt file in notepad with all of the links you prefer to use in order to copy and paste elsewhere. Also, more cosmere-themed emoticons are under construction. Enjoy: Alespren (http://i.imgur.com/ktwO0cb.gif) and static version (https://i.imgur.com/bbMSt3L.png) Angerspren (http://i.imgur.com/D6J6xRU.gif) and static version (https://i.imgur.com/cCqVYgw.png) Anticipationspren (http://i.imgur.com/BM44BrV.gif) and static version (https://i.imgur.com/1tjwhIn.png) Awespren (http://i.imgur.com/3YfOz4J.gif) and static version (https://i.imgur.com/VkpiJTb.png) Awespren (canon) (https://i.imgur.com/7C8wANr.gif) and static version (https://i.imgur.com/9xD7XH0.png) Bindspren (https://i.imgur.com/2tmDaoQ.gif) and static version (https://i.imgur.com/32yBzwl.png) Coldspren (https://i.imgur.com/uOFJI3L.gif) and static version (https://i.imgur.com/e137yIJ.png) Creationspren (http://i.imgur.com/THDwKRq.gif) and static versions (https://i.imgur.com/8lMJI4Z.png), (https://i.imgur.com/1bSjE7G.png), and (https://i.imgur.com/AH8WdWC.png) Fearspren (http://i.imgur.com/fwkGdLK.gif) and static version (https://i.imgur.com/RTfcvUl.png) Gloryspren (http://i.imgur.com/IiBDG5u.gif) and static version (https://i.imgur.com/60gRN2F.png) (alternate version) (http://i.imgur.com/0rFKCWU.gif) and static version (https://i.imgur.com/844IBnV.png) I edited the laughterspren to make it more visible, but left the old one up so links aren't broken: Laughterspren (https://i.imgur.com/HLCjBvQ.gif) and static version (https://i.imgur.com/YcigcGe.png) (alternate) (https://i.imgur.com/UVYzqQB.gif) and static version (https://i.imgur.com/IFaGQje.png) (old) (http://i.imgur.com/dk9SAg9.gif) (dark version) (http://i.imgur.com/twskx1S.gif) Shardblade (http://i.imgur.com/6tU3gRQ.gif) and static versions (https://i.imgur.com/PVjEeQv.png) and (https://i.imgur.com/6UkYJJG.png)
  8. 146 points
    I totally saw Brandon the other day, and he was getting drunk on stormlight. He was so drunk that when I offered to help him carry the giant vats of concrete he was lugging around (don't ask), he just handed me some notes on his plans for Stones Unhallowed and walked away. Being a loyal fan of Brandonalsium, I decided to do the only logical thing and post what will happen in the next book for all to see. I hope you enjoy having Stormlight Archive #3 ruined for you! - The prologue is Elhokar at the party where Gavilar died. He notices Dalinar following the codes as Gavilar said. Then, the two mysterious men convince him to trick Dalinar into getting completely wasted. He gets Dalinar drunk, then gives Szeth directions to Gavilar's room, gives Sadeas the handbook on how to stop the Desolations (it was the only one of its kind, and Sadeas destroys it), gives Venli the tip that she needs to unlock Stormform, and gives Darkness a list of crimes committed by all Surgebinders so that he can kill them. Adolin is also revealed to have dated Shallash. - In present day, the Ghostbloods say that Shallan must find true love if she wants to join them. She angsts over whether she loves Kaladin or Adolin. - Kaladin flies in to Hearthstone in the middle of Roshone's marriage to Laral (it was a really long engagement). Roshone has now grown an evil goatee and intends to push his new button that gives supreme power to Odium once he gets married. Kaladin bursts in and gives his objection right before the vows. Everyone cheers that Kaladin saved the day, only for a brick to knock him out. - Jasnah has to babysit Baby Odium, the suckling child from WoK Chapter 57's Death Rattle. - Szeth decides to chase his dream and become a rockstar. It is revealed in his flashbacks that everyone in Shinovar discouraged this dream because stone was sacred. Szeth was sad, but then he saw someone Soulcasting some grass into a guitar. Using the guitar, he rocked out, singing that the end was coming. He was made Truthless because his music was too loud. - It's revealed that Lirin has turned evil and crowned himself Emperor of Hearthstone. Kaladin, Roshone, Laral, Jost's Dad, and Hesina team up to stop Lirin from upgrading the Voidbringers into the Super Voidbringers. However, when Kaladin tries to fight him, Lirin goes Super Saiyan and defeats Kaladin, telling him that he has to unlock more true potential. - Dalinar confesses that he doesn't remember his wife, only to find out that her name actually is "Shshshshshshsh". - Jasnah runs into a hat-obsessed man who likes drinking metal, claims that two and two equals pickle, can regenerate and slow time, is a master of disguise, and hates guns. Brandon's notes indicate that he is indeed a worldhopper: Hrathen. - The Highspren cause Highstorms, but they've grown tired of it so they give Adolin the power to make Highstorms. - Shallan actually does draw herself as a bridgeman, causing her to realize that she loves Kaladin. - Kaladin decides to say the Fourth Oath to get enough power to defeat Emperor Lirin. However, when he learns that it's, "I will not go after my friend's girl", he refuses to say it. - Dalinar walks up to Shallan and says, "Kaladin killed Helaran" with no context, then walks away. - Nalan is also in possession of a giant block of ice in which Spook has cryogenically frozen himself. - The recurring Interlude character (like Szeth in WoK and Eshonai in WoR) is Mazrim Taim. - Ghost Sadeas appears and swears the Oath, "The death is my life, the strength becomes my weakness, the journey has ended", causing him to transform into Sataneas. - Kaladin tries to flee Hearthstone, but ends up tripping over and unplugging a power cord. This gets rid of Emperor Lirin's power, and Kaladin easily defeats him. As thanks for stopping Lirin, Laral gives Kaladin a big smooch. However, as she does, Shallan walks in, gasps, and runs away. Kaladin chases after her saying that he can explain and we see no more of them in this book. - To raise money for the new Radiants, Dalinar and Renarin start a car wash. However, Amaram's 1974 Parsher truck turns out to be a Carform Parshendi, which turns into the legendary Voidmobile when Adolin hits it with a Highstorm. - Lopen is part of the 11th Radiant Order, the Ganchos. - Szeth and Darkness can't get into Shinovar because there's a ten dollar admission fee. Spook defrosts and the trio go on an epic quest to find ten dollars. - Derethil is still alive and the Aesudan subplot is resolved when Wandersail falls from the sky and crushes her. - Nan Balat reveals that Shallan's mom's name was 'Restares Davar'. - Szeth, Spook, and Darkness run into Jasnah, owner of Roshar's last ten dollars. Szeth and Jasnah bond over their mutual fakeout deaths. - Navani falls into a parallel dimension where Steelheart, The Rithmatist, and Alcatraz are part of the Cosmere. - Lift eats Sadeas's body, causing Sataneas to get mad. - Szeth finally gets back to Shinovar with the ten dollar admission fee, only to find out that they're closed for the summer. - Taravangian finds love. - Adolin gets a puppy and names it Sureblood Jr. However, his puppy gets eaten by TenSoon. - It's revealed that Odium wants to destroy the Cosmere because he got friendzoned by Cultivation. - The Nightwatcher is revealed to actually be the Nightwasher, and only gives you a boon and a curse if you wash your dishes. - Eshonai wakes up and finds that she has been rebuilt into a cyborg. - It's revealed that the Ten Fools founded a group called the Knights Radian. It takes two orders to form a Knights Diameter. - The big twists of the book are: 1. The Recreance happened becuase the Knights Radiant were no longer given a discount on fast food. 2. Elhokar has already been assassinated and Danlan has tricked everyone into thinking that she is Elhokar. 3. The masked Ghostblood is Stella, daughter of Dalinar and Vin, master of all Radiant powers, only one who can stop Odium, and love interest of Hoid. (Totally not a Mary Sue.) 4. Nohadon plaigirized The Way of Kings, stealing it in its entirety from How to be Evil by Dilaf. 5. Lift gets a Shardfork. 6. Ronald McDonald is coming to Roshar. I hope you are all happy to have the book utterly spoiled! Sorry Brandon, but I had to share this new info.
  9. 132 points
    (Note: an updated version can be found here.) Dr. Seuss One spren, two spren, Lie spren, truth spren. Are the blue spren truly glue spren? This one makes a skyeel fly, That one shows up when you die. Oh what a lot of spren I spy! You have light in your spheres, You have shards in your hand, You have surges to help you to fly and to land! So where will you go? Somewhere high? Somewhere low? To the great Reshi Isles, or somewhere with snow? Perhaps you will dine on some Horneater Stew, Delivered directly through Urithiru. Or maybe the Shin will sell you a chicken (eating it helps Thaylen eyebrows to thicken). There’s so many places and people and spren, It’s easy to wonder just where your path ends. But please, don’t forget, it’s the way that you walk that matters much more than the place that you stop. Yes, the road that you take, whether straight, curved, or bendy always matters the most—just ask the Parshendi.
  10. 131 points
    Hey, all. Brandon here. With the release of this book, there have been some minor updates to continuity that I think some of you will find relevant. The big one has to do with Hoid's visit to Terris in The Well of Ascension. For those unfamiliar with the backstory, this little behind-the-scenes action has been a source of some consistent problems. The outline, and original draft, of Well had Vin and Elend traveling up to Terris, then into the mountains, to find the Well itself. This was a huge momentum killer in the story. Having your cityscape-focused book suddenly turn into a traveling quest fantasy for a few chapters felt very out of place, and required too much strange time-jumping to make it work. In revisions, I set about finding a way to repair this, and to overlap the Well of Ascension discovery with Vin's return to Luthadel. The end result worked much better, but I was forced to cut Hoid's cameo. (In the form of footsteps in the snow and frost leading to the Well, hinting that someone had been there just before her.) I knew where Hoid was, and added in the cameo of him with the Terris people—with the plan still being that he visited the Well sometime during the days after Vin's return to the city. Well, in working on Secret History, I found that this had a problem with it. Hoid had to already know where the Well is, because after the destruction of the Pits, he'd need to use the Well to return to Scadrial after leaving in the middle of book one to attend to certain other events. If you've read the story, you know this is how I proceeded. Official continuity is that Hoid went up to Terris after visiting the Well, as he had things to do there. He did not go looking for the Well. This doesn't change continuity for any of the books, though it does render one of the annotations for Well obsolete. Otherwise, I'm quite pleased about this novella. I wasn't certain how it would go, writing something using threads I'd left dangling ten years ago. (You should thank the beta readers, who are all Sharders I believe, for their continuity help. They made me aware pf several things I needed to make much more clear from the original draft, so that canon would be more crisp.) I know there has been a lot of discussion regarding which times when someone appears to hear Kelsier's voice were actually Kelsier. The story offers the official canon for this as well. It's nice to finally be able to give the answers to some longtime fan questions, such as what spooked Vin during her inspection of Hoid and what was up with Preservation and the Mist Spirit. It's entirely possible that, despite our efforts, we slipped up and made some continuity error here or there. If so, I'm terribly sorry! This one has been particularly challenging to do. Thanks, as always, for reading.
  11. 130 points
    Completed code. Got lots of help reading everyone's ideas.
  12. 120 points
    Ok, first time poster, long time lurker. Going to wikipedia searching for the Julia set and using the same animation that Veil used I was able to produce this. Mystery solved right?
  13. 117 points
    These icons were all designed for free use so anybody can have a stylized profile icon to identify themselves. I'll be adding more on occasion so please check back if your personal style isn't represented yet. I'm also open to suggestions for future designs. Knights Radiant Glyphs: __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ Glyphs Without Borders: __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ Radiant Gemstones: _________________________________________________________________ Alternate Gemstones: __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ Voidbinder Glyphs: Glyph One Glyph Two Glyph Three Glyph Four Glyph Five Glyph Six Glyph Seven Glyph Eight Glyph Nine Glyph Ten __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ Swag Series 1: Windrunner Skybreaker Releaser Edgedancer Truthwatcher Lightweaver Elsecaller Willshaper Stoneward Bondsmith __________________________________________________________________________ Swag Series 3: Windrunner || Skybreaker || Releaser || Edgedancer || Truthwatcher Lightweaver || Elsecaller || Willshaper || Stoneward || Bondsmith __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ Allomancy and Feruchemy Charts: __________________________________________________________________________ || Iron - Steel || Tin - Pewter || Zinc - Brass || __________________________________________________________________________ || Copper - Bronze || Atium - Malatium || Gold - Electrum || __________________________________________________________________________ || Chromium - Nicrosil || Aluminum - Duraluminum || Cadmium - Bendalloy || __________________________________________________________________________ || Lerasium || || || __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ || Iron - Steel || Tin - Pewter || Zinc - Brass || __________________________________________________________________________ || Copper - Bronze || Atium || Gold - Electrum || __________________________________________________________________________ || Chromium - Nicrosil || Aluminum - Duraluminum || Cadmium - Bendalloy || __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ Elantris Glowing Aons: There are too many of them to give a preview of all 33 glyphs but the first 15 are displayed below. The links for the entire set are after the preview. The design and meaning for all of them can be found on the coppermind. Aan || Aha || Ala || Ashe || Ata || Daa || Dao || Deo || Dor || Edo || Ela || Ena || Ene || Eon || Eshe || Iad || ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Ido || Ien || Iri || Kai || Kii || Mai || Mea || Nae || Omi || Opa || Rao || Rii || Sao || Sea || Seo || Shao || Teo || __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ The Rithmatist Chalklings: This is only a small sample of the full set. All 27 can be found HERE __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ The Many Faces of Pattern: __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ Roshar Flora & Fauna: Santhid Santhid Eye Chull Axehound Axehound Head Whitespine __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ Individual Designs: 17th Shard Soulstamp Bridge Four The Wafflesworn Necago Court Observers Guild Lords of Choas Edit: Per Chaos' suggestion, the tint for the knights radiant glyphs have been brightened Edit 2: Moved all glyphs to this post for ease of access Edit 3: streamlined the layout so its easier to locate the icon you want to download.
  14. 117 points
    So, I just got out of the midnight release event, and I asked Brandon what the intent of Bavadin's shard is. After conversing with Isaac, he was willing to release it. Bavadin's Intent is Autonomy
  15. 116 points
    “They named it the Final Desolation, but they lied. Our gods lied. Oh, how they lied. The Everstorm comes. I hear its whispers, see its stormwall, know its heart.” "Do you mind, Kobold? I'm trying to watch the Weather Channel."
  16. 114 points
    I have a joke about the 4th ideal of the Windrunners but I'm not ready to say the words.
  17. 109 points
    The blood being in motion is part of it. Because the power, once used, returns to him--much as water, after passing over a turbine, continues on in its system. If they tried to actualize their Aon, it would have an undesirable result. In addition, the chasm broke their bond to the humans they were tied to, and you can see the result of that. So they were affected.
  18. 107 points
  19. 103 points
    George Lucas Open on Kaladin, staring out at the battlefield. It is littered with both soldiers and Parshendi corpses. He stands alone in his vest and trousers, an unreadable expression on his face. KALADIN: Dead. All of them….dead. Half of Bridge Four is gone, because of me. Sylphrena floats up to him, a ribbon of light, before assuming the form of a young girl. SYL: Not-so, Mistah Kaladeen, sah! You-sa still have meesa! KALADIN: Uh, Syl? Why are you talking like that? You didn't talk like that in the last book. SYL: Mistah Lucas thought it'd be better for the KIDS! You-sa knows he loves dee children! KALADIN: Excuse me, Syl. SYL: Where-sa you-sa going, Kaladeen? KALADIN: To find the nearest chasm. J.K. Rowling Dalinarbledore gripped Kaladin's shoulders, meeting his eyes. "Don't you see, Kaladin? You are the Chosen One. Of all the Radiants at this school, you alone can unite the Sprenly Hallows and defeat Voidemort!" Kaladin looked away from Dalinarbledore's eyes, which always made him feel as though he were being X-rayed. "But….this doesn't make sense." "Of course it does. Voidemort chose you as his equal, which is why you can fly and do all of those amazing things." "But wouldn't I have been able to do that anyway, being a Windrunner and all? And while we're at it, why did I get Windrunning while Shalmione got Lightweaving? I mean, seriously, why are there differences in our magic, anyway?" "Because it's magic. Duh." Just then, Professor Sadeas walked by, scowling at Dalinarbledore. "You're smiling, Professor. Ten points from Gryffindor." "I outrank you, Sadeas." "Fine. Ten points to Slytherin, because I have better fashion sense." George R. R. Martin Sigzil stood alone on the battlefield. Around him lay the broken bodies of Bridge Four, Dalinar's warcamp, Sebarial's warcamp, and the entire customer base of a random tavern. "Looks like it falls upon me, then," he sighed. "I alone must carry this narrative to the end. And I shall. I shall." The arrow struck his heart from an unknown source, and there he died. Stephanie Meyer Pattern buzzed in deep chagrin. "Shallan?" "What?" "I know that your sketches are important….but shouldn't you be working on keeping the parshmen from destroying the world?" "In a minute," she said, chagrined. "Shallan, you have already made 499 sketches of Adolin Kholin's abdominal muscles." "And this will be an even 500." Just as she finished the sketch and held it to the light for a moment's admiration, the door swung open. Her chagrin was quickly replaced by delight. "Shallan," Kaladin breathed. "I'm sorry for intruding on you like this, but I had to see you. I didn't have time to put on a shirt. I hope you don't mind." Pattern's chagrined buzzing began anew, but Shallan ignored it. When the Almighty sent you a shirtless Captain, you didn't ask for details.
  20. 103 points
    This is... something... that I came up with. Its inspired by the Wheel of Time ISAM summaries. I'm sorry. PART ZERO: FROM SHINOVAR WITH LOVE Szeth: I don’t want to kill the king, but I must. Because Rock. Dalinar: I’m drunk. *Faints* Jasnah: I’m doing NOTHING OF IMPORTANCE Szeth: Gavilar! Why won't you kill me?!? (SZETH mostly kills GAVILAR) Gavilar: You must tell my brother he must get what he cannot have. (GAVILAR holds out PLOT DEVICE) Gavilar: Its dangerous to go alone. Take this PART ONE: ALETHI HISTORY X Cenn: I’m gonna die, aren’t I? Dallet: Friggin n00bs. Kaladin: I’m a squadleader! (A SHARDBEARER attacks. The KALADIN’S SQUAD is WIPED OUT.) FOUR MONTHS LATER Shallan: I’m on a boat! FIVE MONTHS LATER Kaladin: I’m a slave. Life sucks. Syl: Hello Kaladin (Looks away). D..don’t get the wrong idea. I...it’s not like I want to make you a Surgebinder or anything. Kaladin: How do you know my name? Syl: How do you know your name, bakka! Meanwhile, SOMEWHERE ELSE Shallan: I’m a young noblewoman from a quaint farming village. Jasnah: What do you want? I’m very busy. The narwhal bacons at midnight. Shallan: BLAM! EXTRA HERESY!- I mean, I want to be your ward. Yeah. Jasnah: Then jump off that cliff. Scientifically. (SHALLAN jumps off CLIFF. She survives SOMEHOW) Jasnah: You think you’re qualified to be my ward? Why is that? Shallan: I’m naive and inexperienced, have no formal training, and my house is in ruins. Jasnah: And you want to become my apprentice as an opportunity to gain the fiscal stability needed to gain the capital loan to open your own restaurant in order to raise the revenue to save your family. Shallan: Wait... what? Umm... yes. That’s it exactly. Jasnah: Shut up and take my money. Meanwhile, at the SHATTERED PLAINS Kaladin: Please let me fight again. Assignment Woman: You want to fight? Fight has five letters, which is one fewer than sphere! And one sphere is what a slave makes in a day! You want to steal our spheres! Send him to bridge four! (An AIR RAID SIREN sounds) Gaz: Time for a bridge run. Get in line, lordling! (HOURS PASS while KALADIN and BRIDGE FOUR carry the bridge) Kaladin: I can’t wait till we get there. Parshendi: (singing) Oh I just can’t wait to be king~ Gaz: We’re here. Cross and reverse, then charge the chasm! Parshendi: Dakka dakka. (The BRIDGEMENT CHARGE. It SUCKS, and MOST of them DIE, except KALADIN, who FAINTS) Syl: Wake up, Kaladin! You’re going to be late for the bridge run! Kaladin: Ugg... Syl: Not that I came all the way out here f-f-for you or anything! I just happened to be passing by. 3 σx= 1 WEEKS LATER (KALADIN is on a FABRIAL-TRAIN, clutching his FABRIAL-SDAT) Kaladin: Everyone else is dead. My life sucks. NINE YEARS AGO Kaladin’s Dad: This girl made one rude gesture too many, so we’re taking her finger. Kaladin: Is that even legal? Kaladin’s Dad: I’m a back-alley surgeon. What do I care? PRESENT DAY (KALADIN walks to a CLIFF to consider COMMITTING SUICIDE) Syl: I-I made one Blackbane leaf too many, and I was w-wondering if you wanted it. N-not that I made it just for you or anything. (KALADIN slowly grasps the leaf while EMOTIONAL MUSIC plays) Kaladin: I- (KALADIN turns away from the CHASM, which EXPLODES behind him. DRAMATIC MUSIC plays) Kaladin: TODAY, I’M CANCELING THE BRIDGEPOCALYPSE!
  21. 102 points
    I've tried to be more GLBT aware in recent years, but I want to be careful. Doing it poorly could be more insulting than doing it not at all. Having Ryan, the real world Drehy from Bridge Four, as a friend does at least give me access to someone who can give early feedback and tell me where I might be going wrong. So let's just say maybe. I will keep the books, in this series at least, long. It's what the story demands. As for title...it does have a certain charm, but I worry that it just feels wrong to too many people. Three out of four laugh when I mention it. That doesn't bode well...
  22. 101 points
    It's finished! Or, as finished as it will get for a while. I printed a physical copy to give to Brandon at Boskone, and he seemed to enjoy it a lot. I wish that I had been able to put more illustrations in it, but there simply wasn't time. I am inordinately fond of my Thaylen eyebrows illustration, though. I feel like it really captures the spirit of the mashup. I'm also quite pleased with the Unkalaki tongue twisters. If only I had figured out a way to stick "Airsick lowlanders!" in somewhere. Anyway, here is the book! (Spoilered for size) I hope you like it! I also had some partial drafts for Stormlight versions of other Seuss books that I didn't make the cut for inclusion. So there may eventually be a sequel or improved draft that includes The Bitter Battle Book (about the war on the shattered plains) and a version of Green Eggs and Ham ("Amaram, Lord Amaram, I do not like the Diagram").
  23. 100 points
    So, I know there's a gallery, but it only allows you to post one picture at a time, and I thought it would be a cool idea to share fanart illustrations I've done. SA is really colourful and reads like a graphic novel in my head sometimes, and I like creating character designs after finishing a book. Inspired by many many years of watching cartoons, as you can probably tell. Feel free to ask questions, give feedback, or whatever. This is just my take on SA, so artistic license disclaimer. Click to open spoilers, click picture to open up full size. Illustrated scenes "Visions from God" "Honor is Dead" "Lashed to the Ceiling" "Blossoms and Cake" "The Chasms are Mine" Character portraits "Kaladin" "Dalinar" "Navani" "Jasnah" "Shallan" "Adolin" "Renarin" Character designs "The Kholins" "Shardplate Proportions" "Dalinar and Navani" "Eshonai and Szeth" "PoV Portraits" "Frenemies" Shallan's sketchbook pages "AK + SD" "Stormfather" "Unconscious Brother" "Oathgate" "Adolin" "More Adolin" Silly stuff "Arena Groupies" "Eshonai the Explorer" "Mornings" "Kaladin Valentine" "Adolin Valentine" The end!
  24. 100 points
    [bands of Mourning and Secret History Update: Appended to the end of this post. I have not edited the original text of the post, so no one can infer anything about SH based on what I cut, add, or change.] I just finished re-reading the Mistborn trilogy (got the hardcovers for Christmas), and it really jumped out at me on this read-through just how good Vin is at everything. If it had been my first time through the series, it probably would have bothered me how quickly she picks up Allomancy and other tricks. (I read it several years ago, and I don’t recall it sticking out to me, then.) As she’s learning Allomancy, all the Crew members comment on how naturally it comes to her – Marsh, especially, thinks she has already been practicing. Even mundane things, like how influential she is on Camon’s crew or how quickly she adapts to the nobility, stuck out. However, having read (and re-read) everything in the Cosmere, it seemed more like a clue. Mentions of how Vin was a quick learner or trusted her instincts were slipped in about as often as mentions of her earring, Reen’s voice, or how Sazed wore his copperminds on his arms. It made me wonder… what was the secret behind how quickly Vin learned? In the last epigraph of Book 3, Sazed speculates on Vin: Sazed speculates was special because she was chosen by Preservation as a child and possibly drew in some mists. But he doesn’t stop there; he says that there is something else special about Vin, something he doesn’t understand. So, what could it be? Can we figure it out? I kept this thought in mind during my reread, and some thoughts began to coalesce. The crystallizing point for this theory came to me after Kelsier’s death in Book 1, when Vin went back to Kredik Shaw and fought two Inquisitors. She prepared two tricks: arrowheads with rings on them (basically, the same thing Ranette would invent as anti-Coinshot bullets), and pewter dust to blind the inquisitors. It’s one thing if Vin has an affinity to learning how to use Allomancy because she was chosen to take Preservation or because she drew in some mists as a child; but I didn’t see how that would give her these kind of tactics. So, it occurred to me that maybe Vin had these experiences from a previous life. I know reincarnation isn’t a common thing in the Cosmere, but there have been instances of the dead not staying dead (in Warbreaker, obviously, and Kelsier hangs around even if he doesn’t take on a new body). What if an experienced Allomancer who died during the Final Empire hung around like Kelsier did, but instead of sticking around and meddling, she (assuming it’s a lady Allomancer, as I will go into more detail below) bestowed her experiences upon Vin? Before I dive in to the specifics, I’ll include a brief Table of Contents of the theory. Vin’s Unearned Experience: the instances of Vin’s surprising aptitude Vin vs Valette: Vin views herself as a combination of two or more people Déjà vu: the pieces required for a reincarnation are already present in the series Guess Who?: speculation as to Vin’s previous identity Hoid: maybe this explains what warned her away from him Kelsier: the ramifications on the future of the series Part 1: Vin’s Unearned Experience So, Vin obviously picks up Allomancy very quickly in TFE. Not only does she burn pewter and zinc on instinct, but she learns all of the metals extremely quickly. Other areas of her training, like acting like a noble or even her time on Camon’s crew, come to her naturally, and her instincts guide her. Instincts became the keyword that I looked for; anywhere Vin trusted her instincts (or, even better, her instincts told her something, an active-voice sentence with “instincts” as the subject). I also looked for instances where the word “instincts” wasn’t expressly name-dropped, but people remarked how Vin learned very quickly. (Or I thought she learned too quickly.) Basically, any place that her past life could be manifesting. See the full list below. It’s roughly chronological order, not by importance. I’ve italicized the points that are more circumstantial; the good examples are all un-italicized. On the first mission Vin went on with Camon’s crew, this quote jumped out at me when Vin first became suspicious: Ooh, an internal voice. We haven’t seen those before. Later on, she thinks something along the same lines: Two active voice verbs, where Vin is the object, not the subject. As if something else is acting upon her. Is this Ruin’s influence? I don’t think so. Her earring isn’t in at this point in the novel; she starts wearing it after they get back to the lair, and she prepares to sneak out. These “instincts” can’t be Ruin’s influence. So, to summarize, Vin’s instincts tipped her off to the Ministry’s tactics, even when Camon, an experienced crewleader, was falling for the trap. Experience beyond her station. She responds surprisingly well to Kelsier using zinc on her when he first meets her. “Somehow” is a squirrely Sanderson word for when there’s something behind the scenes. (Okay, not every time, but it’s still a red flag.) Vin could have recognized this from her previous life experiences. When it’s just just her and Kell and Dox, she also resists his Soothing: After resisting his soothing, we see another interesting sentence: There’s that dang “instinct-as-a-subject” construction again. Pushing her to stick with Kelsier and learn Allomancy. That last point aside, the main takeaway from this point is that Vin has experience in recognizing and resisting emotional Allomancy. Vin picks up being a Noblewoman very quickly. She sums up her experience during the first planning meeting with the crew: However, when rubber meets the road, she knocks it out of the park. A sampling of praise: And she keeps getting better. According to Sazed, in Chapter 24 of TFE: Maybe because she’s a reincarnated noble? Vin acknowledges in Hero of Ages how she took to the nobility naturally, because it was a part of her. I won’t quote that in-depth at this point in the theory; see Section 2 for a more in-depth analysis of what this means for her character. Just a quote of interest from when Vin trains in steelpushing. Circumstantial evidence; doesn’t support reincarnation, but takes on new meaning. The coin pouch trick is more substantial. Vin teaches Kelsier a new trick after only a few months of training, the first (of many) times she displays her Allomatic tactical ability. In fact, in Kell’s words: “Fantastic progress”… maybe because she’s remembering skills she had in her past life. The push-match also struck me as uncharacteristic of Vin. She had always avoided direct confrontation, but here, she throws her weight directly at Kelsier, getting in a Push-match. Maybe that’s an instinct from her past life, where she may have been larger and it was an effective tactic. Again, not supporting evidence, but something that takes on new meaning. The evidence from this passage is how Vin learns super-fast. As she thinks to herself: Kelsier is speaking with Sazed later. That last line is Sazed. Sound familiar? (It’s because he calls her special in the HoA epilogue epigraph.) So, yes, her instincts (*cough* past life experience *cough*) make her special. When Sazed is quizzing her as she gets her hair cut, he says: Add another tally mark to the “Vin, you’re so good at everything” comments. Remember when Kelsier said Vin only was good at the physical metals? Soon after that, she sits in on one Breeze session where she realizes how to Soothe subtly. She follows Kell as he goes to find Camon, and sooths him. He catches on, but only barely. His thoughts: I know how! It’s her past life experience coming through! Learning the spikeway quickly was another example of her Allomantic tactics. I won’t do the full quote, but the narration does say “She got the hang of it quickly.” When Sazed rescues her from the Inquisitors, he gives her some of Ham’s pewter to heal. He says: Vin was unconsciously burning pewter when she was on Camon’s crew – she recognizes it when Kelsier gives it to her for the first time. Her body has been familiar with Allomancy for a long time. As Marsh says later: Again, we learn that… Vin is special. “Instincts” pops up again, but in an interesting context, after Vin has gone to a number of balls. An interesting take on her part, since it doesn’t seem she’s losing instincts, but gaining new ones. Also, “Valette” is natural because her previous life experience was a noblewoman. (See the next major section.) Training with Marsh. A huge clue. Marsh gives the spiel, gets her burning bronze, and asks her what she feels: What takes practice comes naturally to Vin… it’s been the story of her life as she learns Allomancy. Again, I suggest that this is because she actually does have prior experience. This doesn’t really have anything to do with anything, but I suspect Vin unconsciously burns gold in Chapter 24. She just came from a ball, where I suspect they had gold-plated utensils (I looked over the chapter, and I didn’t see any mention of anything), and she’s sitting with the crew, having a good time. She imagines she sees herself out in the shadows, as she was before she met the crew. Sounds a lot like the gold shadow she sees of herself later. Anyways, it’s of no substance to this theory, except maybe showing she can unconsciously burn more obscure metals. Allomantic tactics. When fighting Shan, she extinguishes her atium a few seconds early, tricking Shan into thinking that she had run out. When she turns it back on, she confuses Shan, and Vin kills her. A nice bit of trickery for someone who has thus far only burnt Atium against other Atium-burning Inquisitors (and she got subsequently steamrolled by them). Again, unearned experience; tactics she may have learned in her previous life. Kelsier notices how good she is: He goes on to tell her that directly: Allomancy is nothing but tricks, and Vin comes up with new tricks time and time again, things that Kelsier and even the Inquisitors (coming up in another bullet point) don’t have figured out. Ah, the Inquisitor fight in TFE Chapter 36. The place where this theory came together for me. I won’t quote the passage directly, but Vin uses rings on arrowheads to launch un-Steel-able projectiles to shred one Inquisitor, then uses a cloud of pewter dust to blind another. These don’t come from being strong in Allomancy; these are tactics, tricks. Vin comes up with these all the time. Why did she think of these when others didn’t? She even thinks that she wasn’t sure how their eyes worked, but she knew a perfect way to block out their senses. How did she know? Here, more than anywhere else, when her soul is damaged by Kelsier’s loss, her past life begins to creep in the cracks, giving her the training and experiences of her past life to help her with her battles. Oh my, I’ve got this many examples, and I’m only starting WoA. Hoo boy. Anyways, we start off with some more talk about Vin being “special,” this time from Elend as she spars with Ham. She winds up beating Ham, a good thug. Vin is a quick learner when it comes to fighting, too, not just when it comes to Allomancy. He also remarks on her strength in Allomancy; she might have her Allomatic strength determined by her previous life’s strength, during a time when Mistborn were more powerful (not as powerful as Elend, though). She gives OreSeur dog bones. That’s another new tactic – no kandra had used animal bones before, as we find out in Book 3. Vin really does come up with these all the time. I wonder how she does it… She instantly picks up Duralumin-Steelpushing herself. She first uses it to go rescue Breeze, and she lands at just the right spot. A brand new skill, and she does it perfectly the first time. I think she might have past-life experience with duralumin. She wasn’t the only one to discover it; the Lord Ruler mentioned it in one of the storage caverns. There’s another very powerful clue for me when Vin was researching the Deepness. She starts the chapter being barely trained in writing: A very clear picture: Vin has little experience writing, and is not good at it. But, apparently, she can write very well anyways. Vin, of course, brushes it off and starts talking about the Straff’s army. But it seems a little heavy-handed to me. Perfect penmanship? What an odd thing to mention. The only thing more Mary Sue-ish would be… …oh, no, she’s also the most graceful person in a dress. When Tindwyl takes her and Allrianne shopping: *gag* I certainly hope this is indicating she spent a long (previous) life as a Mistborn noblewoman. Because otherwise, this is getting out-of-hand with how good Vin is at everything. And then, we have The Big One. Taking down Zane. Beating someone burning atium without your own atium. And what word shows up in the narrative? Instinct: that word keeps popping up. She let her body do what it wanted to. This is a crazy technique, and, again, it’s one she does perfectly without practice. It reminds me of the way she resisted Kelsier’s Soothing when she first met him. She has experience resisting Allomancy; mental metals, and now atium. Techniques I think she learned in her past life. Vin doesn’t think she’s the first to figure it out: If it was a technique she had done in a prior life… then, yes, Vin, you were the first to think of it. And the second to think of it, as well. Maybe someone else can take bronze… (that’s a reference to Olympic metals, not Allomantic metals.) Oh, and don’t forget the flying horseshoes trick. The annotations say that she is the first one to pick up that particular trick. So, that’s not one tactic that’s definitely not from a previous life. Oh, good, things are going a lot quicker through the rest of the trilogy. I’m on to Hero of Ages, now, and I’m 30 chapters in before Vin does something surprisingly well. It’s when they crash Yomen’s party. She dives in from a position of power, something she had never had in her previous ball interactions, and she instantly takes to it. Elend notices: So, there are three main categories where these examples fall in to: Learning Allomancy quickly, learning Tactics and Fighting quickly, and learning Nobility quickly. If it were just Allomancy, I could believe it was enhanced intuition provided by Preservation. Even the anti-atium and anti-Inquisitor tactics, on a good day. But all three categories? It seems too much of a stretch that being chosen as Preservation’s hero would give her penmanship and the mindset of a noble. So, I think these experiences come from a past life as a noble. Part 2: Vin vs Valette One major theme of Vin’s character arc is reconciling her two different personas. She wonders, is she Vin the street urchin? Or is she Valette the noblewoman? Eventually, she determines that her true self is a combination of the two. She needs to incorporate both the experience gained on the street with the noblewoman who goes to balls. This conflict is presented from the beginning, from Kelsier’s first training session with her: When she was thinking of how “Lord Renoux” adopted his persona: She begins to realize that she isn’t actually either of them, but something else entirely. From WoA, Chapter 35: She tries to push the “Valette” persona off as an act, but her conversation with Tindwyl when they were dress-shopping begins to change that. Vin says she sees a problem with wearing dresses because it wasn’t really her; Tindwyl asks, “And these can’t dresses be part of who you really are?” More pointedly: This conflict continues, somewhat, into HoA, Chapter 27: She eventually realizes in Chapter 32 that being a noble is an essential part of her: Since I was thinking about the context of reincarnation, this took on a different meaning to me entirely. Vin isn’t just a combination of her two sets of experiences… what if she is a combination of two different people? Vin the street urchin represents her current life experiences. Valette the noblewoman (and Allomatic experience) comes from a previous life. As she struggles with these two halves of herself, she’s actually trying to merge her current and previous identities, to create who she truly is. Oddly enough, combining multiple people into one is a concept that is presented elsewhere in the Mistborn trilogy. Koloss and Steel Inquisitors are both described as being multiple people combined into one. Steel inquisitors first, by Noorden, the friendly obligator. Immediately afterwards, Elend realized how koloss were created: I thought it was an odd way of characterizing the change; Hemalurgy has been presented more as stealing someone else’s attributes, not combining multiple people. But it gave me some insight into how Vin could be the combination of two people. Marsh was still Marsh, even though he had other people “combined” into him. Same with Human the koloss; the annotations give his backstory, so he is a real person. The reincarnation isn’t a Wheel of Time kind of reincarnation (like the Heroes of the Horn being spun out into new identities), but someone who has already died giving up her experience to Vin. I don’t think I’m saying Vin is a Hemalurgic creation; the experiences of a past life spiked onto an orphan girl. But I think it’s a similar concept, not necessarily carried out using that magic system. Part 3: Déjà vu So, conceptually, it’s a bit of a stretch to say Vin’s experiences belonged to a dead person. I get that – there isn’t a single hint of this kind of previous lives in the trilogy (or even in Alloy or SoS). But I think all the pieces are there in the trilogy itself. Dead individuals stick around. Kelsier sticks around. Vin’s previous incarnation could have stuck around in a similar fashion. Combining multiple people into one. I discussed this in Part 2, so I won’t go into detail here. The gods made Vin special. According to Sazed, Preservation chose Vin after she was born, because she snapped so early. Ruin also made his mark on her when she was young, spiking her with her sister’s Bronze ability. A third individual, “meddling” like Kelsier, could have also imparted past life experiences onto her. Souls can return to bodies. Sazed says that he didn’t figure it out in time to resurrect Vin and Elend, but WoB says it’s possible. http://theoryland.com/intvmain.php?i=727 Minds can be used to power magic. I’m not sure my Realmatics are quite right, but we saw Preservation turn his mind (soul?) into Investiture to imprison Ruin. It wasn’t his body, his Shard’s power; it was just his mind. The mind of Vin’s past life could be the power behind this reincarnation of its experiences. So, while the way I’ve assembled them may be novel, I think that it is a natural progression of what is presented in the novels. Part 4: Guess Who? I strained my eyes looking through the pages, trying to figure out who could have been Vin’s previous life. This person had to be dead before Vin was born (duh), and they had had to be born after Allomancy was discovered (because Vin knew tricks against both Steel Inquisitors and atium burners). And, lastly, this person had to be a Mistborn (since Vin had good instincts in all metals). I also think that her previous incarnation needed to be a noblewoman, because of how her internal conflict played out between orphan and noblewoman. I guess it could have been a nobleman, but Vin always sounds secure in her femininity. She’s a combination of Noble and Urchin, not a combination of Man and Woman. Now, gender and status aren’t deal-breakers; if I could find a character who met the previous three conditions who was a non-noble or a man, I would consider them a strong candidate. So, boil this all down, compare it to characters from the books… and I’ve got nothing. Gemmel is the only Mistborn who’s dead before the series begins, but he was still alive after Vin was born. (Also, not a girl.) Alendi crossed my mind, but he was only a Seeker, and he never fought Atium burners. Other than that, we don’t know much about the history of the world. So, I can’t point to an individual who I think was Vin’s previous life. But I can describe what I think she was like: a noblewoman Mistborn. Part 5: Hoid Now, the part where this really got fun was when Vin decided to avoid Hoid (hmm, that might be the Cosmere name for Tag. Avoid Hoid. It’s got a nice ring to it.) Uhh… let’s try this again. When Vin decided to avoid Hoid (stay on target), she trusted her instincts. Remember, Instincts = Past Life in this theory. So, something about her past life told her to stay away from Hoid. But what could it be? All Vin heard was humming. She didn’t even see Hoid. Just heard him. What was he humming, anyways? I wonder if Vin recognized it. Could it have been a song she knew in her past life. Has Hoid visited Scadrial before? Did he work with Vin’s past life, someone who knew that song? That’s a very Hoid thing to do; hum a song from a bygone era that no one living knows (except Vin has a vague memory of it because of her past life). And, hey, let’s go down the rabbit hole. Hoid was looking for the Well of Ascension to get a Lerasium bead. Vin’s previous life might have thought she was the Hero of Ages as well, looking for the Well of Ascension, even though the thousand years hadn’t passed. After she died, she stuck around, and saw who Preservation chose to take her power and use the Well of Ascension. And she (old Vin) decided to grant her experience and skill to the new Vin. Mad speculation, of course. We know precious little about what Hoid has been up to. I have no idea what Vin’s previous life was all about. So, please disregard the previous paragraph. (I’ll stand by the rest of this section, though.) Part 6: Kelsier So, this is a fairly complex undercurrent for Vin’s character. If Brandon was writing something like this into her arc, how is he going to get it across to the readers, now that the trilogy has been concluded? What are the ramifications on the future of the series? He doesn’t have plans for flashback books, so how would we ever learn about Vin’s past life? I’ve compared Vin’s previous life to Kelsier a number of times throughout the theory. That’s where I think it becomes relevant: not in learning about Vin, but as a key trait of a character in a future trilogy who Kelsier reincarnates into. He would grant his experiences, his motivations, to a new character, to aid them in… well, whatever a future Mistborn trilogies would be about. That way, we can learn about the circumstances of reincarnation, without going back to Vin. We learn it all through new eyes, and then someone like Harmony says, “I’ve seen this before. Although we didn’t realize it at the time, the Ascendant Warrior had the experiences of another to aid her. What you have is what remains of Kelsier, the Survivor. You can trust it.” Except, probably in much more epic language. That also would let us see some of that hinted-at Hoid/Kelsier animosity! Vin was known as the Heir to the Survivor. I don’t think she inherited anything from him, though; I think she was the Heir to someone else’s experiences. This hypothetical future incarnation of Kelsier, however… he would be the true Heir to the Survivor. Another mythical Hero who we thought was Vin this whole time, only to have the rug pulled out from under us. Again. Summary Okay, here’s the gist: Vin is so good at what she does because a dead person has passed along her experiences and skills. That is why Vin learn so quick and come up with her tricks, and it also contributes to her “identity crisis” between skaa and noblewoman. This might become relevant in the future if Kelsier reincarnates himself in the same fashion. Also, sorry for direct-quoting 30% of the text of the Mistborn trilogy throughout this post. Bands of Mourning/Secret History Update:
  25. 99 points
    I have him as a guy right now, but that could change. (It has before.) Yes. Yes. Yes. Separate summoning. He has a home base. Perhaps. I've got a few more chapters than I've posted. Including some viewpoints from the most powerful magical sword ever created. Most powerful...in that he has the most powers. Thousands of them. All useless.
  26. 99 points
    You guys are awesome, and I really appreciate what you've done here. No RAFO. In my own terms, I refer to all of this as types of investiture. The degree, and effects, can be very different--but those people are invested. I term this Innate Investiture, and it is similar to what happens with people on Nalthis. That is also innate. In most cases, they would still be Allomancers. Mixed, potentially, with something else depending on the native innate investiture. That mixture could do some strange things, though.
  27. 98 points
    This is why my ears aren't pierced. Just sayin'...
  28. 97 points
    I went to my first signing ever on the Arcanum Unbounded tour, and when I went through the personalization line, Brandon and I had a nice conversation about the physical properties of ettmetal, otherwise known as harmonium, and how they were impacted by Realmatics. (Influenced in part, I assume, because when he was going through his opening talk, I fist-pumped when he said he was originally a chemistry major. He saw, and asked if I was a chemist, to which I replied I was a chemical engineer. So, I think he took the chance to share some details with someone who’d be able to fully comprehend them.) I’m still waiting to get the recording of the signing line, but I’ll paraphrase what I got out of it. Brandon said that it makes sense for ettmetal to be so volatile, because it has the power of both Shards in it, and the conflict associated with them. He also clarified that it’s not a nuclear reaction; it’s chemically reactive, it’s the properties of the electrons in Harmonium that make it so reactive. It’s like ‘super-cesium,’ reacting very quickly with water. I wasn't quite ready prepared to deal with the implications (I was there as a cosmere fan, not a scientist), but I've spent some time thinking it over, and I think I understand a little more exactly how the physics and the realmatics are interacting. I've come to several major conclusions, which are reliant on a college-level understanding of chemistry. If you’re not at that level, skip ahead to the next section, where I’ll try to build it up in layman’s terms. For those who feel knowledgeable, though: Overview of the Theory · I propose that the subatomic particles of harmonium (protons, electrons, and neutrons) are comprised of pure Investiture, but still functioning as normal subatomic particles. This Investiture would be still of each individual Shard, even though the atom as a whole would be of Harmony. · The reactivity of harmonium follows the trend of alkali metals, but would be enhanced due to an additional electron shielding factor that would come from the repulsion of Ruin particles and Preservation particles, lowering the ionization energy and increasing reaction rates. · The alkali-metal behavior of Harmonium would come from the imbalance between the two Shards, the extra piece of Ruin. It would follow the orbital structure of cesium (atomic number 55), with one electron in each filled orbital from each Shard. The single valence electron would be an extra Ruin electron. · I’d like to say that each harmonium atom (cesium-133, the only stable isotope) is a combination of a lerasium atom and an atium atom, which would make atium = nickel (28) and lerasium = cobalt (27). However, I can’t get the neutron math to add up. It’s possible that the nucleus looks different, that the stability of harmonium is different because of the competing Investiture in the nucleus. This gets into physics, not chemistry, so I’m not equipped to dig deeper into this idea. So, if you understand that, great. Head on down the page to my conclusions, to see what I’ve thought of as implications of this. If you didn’t (which I assume is the majority), let’s do a quick* chemistry lesson. (For those who have actually studied chemistry, be aware this explanation will be pop science. Like one of my professors used to say, all explanations of chemistry are lies, and we just learn slightly smaller lies the farther and farther we go.) Chemistry of Alkali Metals What are atoms? Elements (like copper, oxygen, or chlorine) are made of fundamental particles called "atoms." These atoms interact with one another, bonding together to form more complicated substances (from water to gasoline to medicinal compounds). Different atoms will behave in different ways, based on the number of subatomic particles they’re comprised of. All atoms have dense nucleus, made of protons and neutrons, surrounded by a cloud of electrons. The number of protons defines the element: any atom with one proton is hydrogen, any one with six protons is oxygen, any one with 55 protons is cesium. Chemical reactions are largely driven by the transfer of electrons from one atom or group of atoms to another. How do electrons behave? Electrons are attracted to the nucleus through the electromagnetic force, pulling together the negative charge of an electron and the positive charge of the protons. But electrons aren't like planets in a solar system, just floating wherever they feel like. When they surround a nucleus, they order themselves into levels, filling from the lowest level (closest to the nucleus) and going up. For chemical reactions, only electrons in the outermost level will be involved; anything in a lower level that has been completely filled will not react. In chemical reactions, atoms will trade or share electrons until every atom involved has a filled outermost shell (either by getting more electrons or getting rid of some of theirs), since a filled shell is the most thermodynamically stable. That's how the periodic table of elements is arranged; elements in a column all have the same number of electrons in their outermost level (called 'valence electrons'), so they will all behave in a similar fashion. If they have an almost-full shell, they will be very reactive, like chlorine and oxygen. If their shell is filled, they will be nonreactive, like helium. The reactive properties of ettmetal match the first column of the periodic table, the 'alkali metals.' They all have a single valence electron, and they want to get rid of it like none other, so they'll take any opportunity to do so. They are metals, but they will react very violently with water. Other alkali metals you may have heard of are sodium, lithium, potassium, which are not found in nature in their pure forms because of how reactive they are. How can we free up that electron? Pure alkali metals would like to pass off their single valence electron to another molecule or atom, which would be more thermodynamically stable with it. However, to get rid of this electron in the first place, there is some energy required to ‘knock it loose.’ It's sort of like trying to launch a rocket from earth; you need a bunch of energy to overcome gravity, but once you're out in space, you can go wherever you want. Unlike that rocket, though, there are many different forces acting on an electron. Each proton is pulling on that valence electron, trying to keep it there. But, believe it or not, as you take alkali metals with more protons, the total force on a valence electron electron goes down, and they get easier to remove. Why is this? Two reasons: first, the electron is farther away from the nucleus. But, more relevant to this discussion, the lower shells filled with electrons are also pushing the valence electron out. This concept is called "electron shielding.” Negative charges repulse other negative charges, so when there are a ton of electrons between the valence electron and the nucleus, they will cancel out some of the pull of the protons. Since the electrons in heavier alkali metals aren’t held as strongly, reactions happen faster, and release their energy much quicker. Harmonium reacts even quicker than cesium, the highest alkali metal that's not a pretend element (another of my old professor's fun sayings about transuranic elements). That means its electron is even easier to remove, and it reacts even faster. Realmatics of God Metals How does this play with Realmatics? Finally, we get back to what Brandon said about the opposite forces within the same atom. An atom with protons and electrons comprised of Ruin would behave like a normal atom; no unusual interactions. Same for an atom completely of Preservation. But mix and match, and Preservation electrons would push on the Ruin electrons, giving extra electron shielding. And the Preservation protons would also push on the Ruin electrons (partially countering their normal electromagnetic attraction), reducing the force holding them in. By making it easier to remove harmonium’s valence electron, the rate at which it reacts with other atoms will increase. Which is what we’ve seen. Why does Harmonium have 1 valence electron in the first place? Lastly, I think that harmonium needs to be an alkali metal and have that 1 extra valence electron because of the balance between Ruin and Preservation. In a filled electron shell, each electron has a pair. I think each electron pair contains one Preservation electron and 1 Ruin electron. But, here's the problem: there's extra Ruin. Some of Preservation is in mankind, so if he doesn't physically manifest this extra Ruin somewhere, he won't be in balance. So, he throws in an extra Ruin proton and Ruin electron; this very reactive valence electron. As long as he manifests enough harmonium, the extra Ruin is there in the environment. Brandon has referred to ettmetal as super-cesium. That could be interpreted as a magically stabilized francium (which isn't stable, and doesn't exist outside of a few moments in a laboratory), but I think he means it's a super-reactive cesiuim. Cesium has 55 protons and 55 electrons; harmonium would have 27 of Preservation and 28 of Ruin. The Invested protons, neutrons, and electrons change the atomic behavior of Harmonium, which is why it isn’t exactly cesium. In Conclusion So, I learned in my discussion with Brandon that 1) the pieces of Ruin and Preservation are distinct in harmonium and 2) the battle between them causes ettmetal to be highly reactive. I think I’ve identified the specific mechanism by which this happens. It does, however, carry some interesting implications that I’m still working out. Let me share some of them with you; feel free to comment. · If there’s a repulsion between electrons, there must also be one for protons and neutrons. This would make Harmonium’s nucleus more unstable. Although Brandon said it is not a nuclear reaction that we’ve seen, it may just require the proper catalyst, so I would not be surprised to see an ettmetal nuclear bomb at some point. · If harmonium is cesium made out of Investiture, then maybe it is a fusion (the scientific term, combining the nuclei) of a lerasium atom and an atium atom. That would mean that lerasium would have 27 Preservation protons, and behave like cobalt. Atium would have 28 Ruin protons, and behave like nickel. However, although the electrons add up, the neutrons will not. (The number of neutrons doesn’t affect how an atom behaves chemically, but it can make it radioactive, which will change it into a different element.) There’s only one stable isotope of cesium, and one of cobalt, and doing the math doesn’t yield one of nickel’s stable isotopes. It’s possible the stability of harmonium is different, because of the extra forces between Ruin’s and Preservation’s protons and neutrons, somehow requiring fewer neutrons for stability. But, this isn’t anything I’ve studied as a chemist; it’s in the realm of physicists. · Because there are individual elements of Ruin and Preservation, this doesn’t bode well for Harmony as a whole. Sure, on a macroscopic scale, there’s balance. But it could mean that, in each of his individual interactions with people, he might go back and forth between two extremes. It also makes me wonder how easily Harmony could Splinter back into two Shards (although we do know that at this point, if Sazed died, he would drop a single powerful Shard.) · Ettmetal reacts, which means its transferring part of itself to water. Once the electrons are gone, they ain’t coming back. Atium burns and regenerates; how would a harmonium oxide make its way back to continue the cycle? It seems like Investiture is lost to the environment when ettmetal reacts with water. · People have extra Preservation, but if ettmetal is Harmony’s way of sequestering his extra Ruin, then as it continues to react with water, the extra Ruin could end up transferring to the environment. Man vs Nature is a very big concept in sci-fi, so maybe it could come up in Mistborn Era 4, that the planet itself is of Ruin while its inhabitants are of Preservation. Just spitballing here. · How do other god metals work? If they’re elements made out of Investiture particles, then can Shardblades rust? Or maybe are they silver made out of Honor’s Investiture, which is why they won’t react? (Unfortunately, Element 10 is neon, which is not a metal.) But that wouldn’t give them the structural integrity they need (even if they don’t physically do the cutting, a pure silver sword would be deformed in a duel). Does each Shard make a different metal for its god metal, or could it make any metal it wanted? · Are all physical forms of Investiture (the mists, the liquid Shardpools, Stormlight) similarly constructed? Maybe the mists were composed of two Preservation hydrogens and one Preservation oxygen? Are Perpendicularities just Invested mercury? The reactivity of ettmetal shows that, at the very least, the solid form of one Shard’s power manifests below the atomic level; does every solid form of Investiture do so, as well? Uh… In Conclusion, Again Okay, I’m done for real this time. I know people have proposed similar things (like atium is Ruin’s electrum) based on allomantic behavior, and I didn’t like them at the time (the ideas and logic behind them, not the people), but the way Brandon spoke of Harmonium makes me think that approach was on the right track. However, it’s on a more fundamental level: the very protons and electrons are either of Ruin or Preservation, and when you combine the two, you get a very reactive metal. I’ve tried to completely explain the chemistry of the situation, but it does dive pretty deep at times. If you’d like to know more about that, please just let me know. I didn’t bring out any graphs to show exactly why electron shielding increases reaction rate, but I can if anyone’s interested. I will also try to get the actual transcript to post it. I’m confident in the broad strokes of my conversation with Brandon, that Harmonium is extra reactive because of the opposing Shards it’s made up of, but I do think that having his exact words would have preempted some objections that I’m sure are coming. I’m just not patient enough. 07/19/17 - Made slight changes to the text to (hopefully) clarify what is canon and what is supposition on my part. To emphasize, it is not confirmed that harmonium is unbalanced towards Ruin. What is canon is it behaves like an alkali metal. If my supposition is true, that each electron is either of Ruin or Preservation, then the idea of unbalanced harmonium naturally follows.
  29. 97 points
  30. 96 points
    Hey everyone! So I, like many of you I'm sure, have been trying to successfully convert my wife to the Cosmere. Literally since I met her I've been trying to get her to read The Way of Kings but there never seemed to be a good time for her to jump into it - either she was reading something else, had too much work, or just couldn't commit to a 1000-page book whose series wasn't finished yet. However, we've recently figured out that she really enjoys being read aloud to - she likes the sound of my voice and it helps her relax after a long day (she's a high school English teacher dealing with teenage angst all day - please show her some sympathy here). So naturally, I finally sold her on tWoK and I've been reading it to her for the last few months, a bit at a time. At the moment, we're in part 2 and just read the scene where Dalinar experiences the first vision we see 'on-screen' where the Midnight Essence shows up and he fights it off with a fire poker. So here's another thing: my wife is absolutely hilarious and also has trouble remembering names (to be fair, Alethi names have a lot of -lin, -as, -nar suffixes), so I recently asked her to give me a breakdown of what she remembers each character as. Here's what she's got: Kaladin - Slaveboi - "He used to be soldierboi, now he's slaveboi, but I'm pretty sure by the end of all this he'll be shardboi" Shallan - Sneak - "She's so mean! She's just becoming friends with her to steal her magic jewellery. I don't like her." Dalinar - Jeffrey Dean Morgan - "He looks like JDM." Adolin - The Hot Brother - "He's kind of a slut right?" Renarin - The Awkward Brother Sylphrena - Manic Pixie Dream Girl Sadeas - B****boi - "He's the idiot with the bridges right? Yeah, he's a b****boi." Jasnah - Princess Jasmine - "She's a princess right? No? Yes - she's the daughter of Dead Kingy Boi." Gavilar - Dead Kingy Boi Szeth - The Michelin Man - "Because he's big and all in white!" "Tay, he's average size. Just his eyes are described as big." "Are you kidding me?" Elhokar - Boi King - "You're making sure to write these all as 'b-o-i', right?" Gaz - C***! - I know this board doesn't allow swearing - but she just straight-up shouted the c-word when I mentioned Gaz. The Stormfather - The Stormdaddy - "Make sure they know it's being said in an uncomfortably sexual way." Chasmfiends - Rock Lobsters Some early hot takes from Tay: - Dalinar killed Gavilar so that he could become king because he's in love with Gavilar's wife. - The shardbearer who Kaladin fights in the first chapter killed all of his men and enslaved Kaladin. - Sadeas is behind the cut saddle. - Kaladin and Syl are going to fall in love. - Kaladin is going to get a shardblade ("He's obviously going to get a shardblade Chris... don't mess with me here.") - Shallan already has a shardblade (!) - Shallan is going to feel too guilty to steal Jasnah's soul-caster OR "Princess Jasmine is going to catch her sneaking around and say 'Hey Sneak. Let's have a DMC about why you want to steal my magic jewellery.'" I also thought I'd pop back in on this thread every once in a while to update you with any fun observations she makes in the future, and thought this could be a nice place to share our experiences with introducing the series to the people in our lives and their reactions to us being insufferable and incorrigible nerds!
  31. 96 points
    Warbreaker: Slight edit to OPs The Final Empire: Well of Ascension: Hero of Ages: TWoK:
  32. 94 points
    My guess would be: "I cannot save everyone, but I will save those I can".
  33. 94 points
  34. 94 points
    Realmatic theory was part of the ancient Terris religion. Re: Alcatraz. Ha! Burn the One Ring, eh? I think it's such a powerfully invested object that it would be very, very dangerous to try.
  35. 94 points
    Good question. I designed the cosmere to have much the same structure, but imagined the action happening in a compact dwarf galaxy. Still a lot going on, but far, far fewer stars and systems than our own.
  36. 94 points
    It's mostly relevant for later books, but there are some things here and there. Good question. ... RAFO Sel is very cosmere aware at this point, but getting to and through Shadesmar (that's not the local term, by the way) is very difficult on Sel. That stunted them for a long while. They're still fairly far ahead. Ha. If I give you this, what will you speculate on in the future? I hate to do this, but I'm going to RAFO that one for now. Sorry.
  37. 94 points
    A lightsaber is actually a little more easy to wield than a Shardblade, I would guess. Shardblades were designed to fight something larger than another person; you don't actually need all of that size when fighting someone. So that gives a slight edge to you average Jedi. If it's someone like Szeth, who has a more modestly sized Blade, then I don't honestly know. That's very flattering to hear. I've made a study of leadership in many different areas, the military being one of them. It's a topic that fascinates me, and I try hard to get it right. I wouldn't say I have any practical experience in it, unfortunately--just a lot of study, questioning, and curiosity.
  38. 94 points
    The middle section was scorched pretty clean. I know of a few interesting tidbits, but it's not technology. (The tech level before the Lord Ruler took over was nothing particularly special, early industrial era.) The cool and interesting things are on the southern continent. They will be known by the modern trilogy, so it's safe to assume that a discovery will happen soon. Either during the Alloy of Law era or soon after. There were groups who would go out there to escape the Lord Ruler, and the Final Empire in general. Survival was practically impossible. It's possible someone might have gotten across to the southern continent, but it would take a small miracle. RAFO. (You knew I'd do that.) Something is different. You will find out what. Thanks for reading!
  39. 94 points
    He couldn't get rid of this entirely. I don't want to spoil things, but Snapping was built into Allomancy primarily because of larger-scale magical issues. This is getting deep into the issue, but it has to do with a person's spiritual makeup and a 'wounded' spirit being easier to fill with something else, kind of like a cut would let something into the bloodstream. Sazed made this threshold on Scadrial much easier to obtain. Yes. In theory. Getting to Sel is really tough... I'd say that the spren on Roshar have been my favorite so far--they are so different, but also so RIGHT. They have a mythological fae-feel to them, but also fit into the cosmere arcanum just perfectly. I also like writing them.
  40. 93 points
    Today there were huge thunderstorms in our area and during lunch, the cafeteria lights flickered and this low rumble of thunder went off.I just whispered "the stormfather is angry" My friend beside me completely lost it.
  41. 93 points
    They are in a symbiotic relationship with the chasmfiend, and are part of what allow the creatures to grow to the size they do with an exoskeleton. (Along with a high-oxygen, lower-gravity world.)
  42. 92 points
  43. 92 points
    My pleasure. Thanks for reading. It has some very small effect. Selish, Scadrian, Nalthian, Rosharan. I have heard of Madoka Magica, but have not watched it. I don't know the other one. I haven't really gotten into an anime since Bebop, though people keep telling me I need to watch one of the Full Metal Alchemist shows. Well, my son (having only girl cousins) has a stuffed rabbit he named Fluttershy...so that one? I'm afraid you're talking to the wrong Dragonsteel person for MLP discussion. Peter's a fan, but I've never actually seen an episode of the new incarnation. (My little sisters, many years ago, did make me suffer through the movie with the sea ponies about a billion times, however.)
  44. 91 points
  45. 91 points
    There are interesting connections around the cosmere between linguistics and some cultures. Though different groups of humans were created on different planets, the Shards all share a single point of origin. However, the Tranquiline Halls legends are not related to a Nalthis/Roshar connection.
  46. 91 points
    This is feasible. One thing to keep in mind is that mistwraiths are people who have a blockage between the physical and the cognitive realm, messing with their ability to think. Think of them as mentally-stunted people. There's enough there to train, but then you have to dig into the ethics of it... Hemalurgy can give allomantic powers to a kandra. The process to do so is not known to anyone but Harmony.
  47. 90 points
    RAFO From world-hoppers, Shards, and those who know about the cosmere. Someone did exactly this in the original draft of Way of Kings, back in 2002. It grew out of the culture and linguistics somewhat naturally; nobody 'named' it that. RAFO Shallan will likely be doing some sketches from dueling grounds where Sharbearers fight.
  48. 90 points
    Thank you for reading, and for the kind words. I'm thrilled that people out there are paying enough attention to even ask questions like this. It's flattering. Yes, though in the overwhelming majority of cases, it's end-positive or at least neutral. Hemalurgy really is an oddity in the cosmere For similar reasons to why the Dor acts so differently from Preservation's essence... Some planets had people before the shattering. The Dor's nature, and why it acts as it does, is in part related to this question. Thanks!
  49. 89 points
    Ha. I...really would rather pass on this one. Getting the Ketek right in KINGS took weeks of writing and rewriting. I'm not sure I'd like to try something, even for fun, in a quick forum write like this. RAFO. (But you will see it again.) The relationship is there, but it's not a very strong connection. There are metals which exist that any Allomancer can burn, regardless of their own orientation. Sadeas would make great use of Zane. Far better use than his father did.
  50. 89 points
    They range between the size of a hand to perhaps the size of a small melon. You'll find out more about them eventually. Like most things from Aimia, they're pretty odd, and are also now very rare since the scouring. Yes. Good question. Interesting theory. Yes.
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