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307 Bloodsealer

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  1. I enjoyed reading the Jasnah and Wit chapter because it lets us see an interesting new side to both characters, and it also makes sense that these two got together. Both of them are used to operating alone, and they took a rare opportunity to be close with someone who is on their level. Both of them can accept and understand the other’s quirks in a way that most people couldn’t. Having said that, I don’t expect their relationship will last long. Both characters are on different trajectories, so it would be hard for them to stay together. Also, both are planned to be main characters in the future, so if Brandon was planning a grand romance between them, I doubt so much of how they got together would be off-screen.
  2. If it were just the light, I would assume that it was an invention of adult Shallan’s. Like a way of censoring the memory after the fact. For me, the weird bit is that Shallan associates the thing in the safe with her mother’s soul. That’s oddly specific, which rules out the theory that it’s just adult Shallan’s addition to the memory. And you don’t confuse a soul with a Shardblade for no reason. The obvious(ish) explanation is that Chana’s soul is literally trapped in the safe by Lin. Presumably something goes wrong, and she ends up on Braize. We know that it is theoretically possible to trap Herald ‘souls’ in a gemstone like spren, and it’s plausible that the people around Chana had figured this out. Maybe it was even a contingency plan in case of Herald death. Another possible explanation is that child Shallan considered Testament to be her mother. I don’t mean that she confuses Testament for Chana (that would be wild), but that Testament acted like a parent to child Shallan, so Shallan saw her as another mother. That would explain why she connects the Testament Shardblade to her mother’s soul - it’s her mother, but it isn’t a body in the traditional sense, so she calls it a soul. As for Shallan seeing the ‘soul’ locked in the safe and then going to talk to Testament in the garden - I think this can be explained by Shallan panicking, and instinctively knowing that she can call Testament to her.
  3. I think this is my main point of disagreement with the Stormfaker theory. I’ve never thought of the SF as being a ‘good guy’. Sure he’s working with the good guys for now, but he’s in kind of a grey area. He’s petulant and childish, he doesn’t have much respect for other people or value human life, and he has always been cagey. And that’s setting aside that one time he tried to kill everyone. The SF likes to present himself as a force of nature that exists outside of human ideas of right or wrong, but as we see during Eshonai’s death flashback in ROW, that’s not really how the SF is. Prologue!SF behaves very similar to current!SF in my opinion. Prologue!SF is petulant and childish, he has no real respect for Gavilar, lying and withholding information to try to manipulate him. Prologue!SF and current!SF are both terrible at reading people, trying to control events from behind the scenes but being so bad at it they don’t have that much of an impact.
  4. I’m in the ‘probably the real Stormfather’ camp, but for the sake of argument let’s assume that it is Ishar impersonating the Stormfather. What would that add to the story? Presumably, it would be upsetting to Dalinar, but I doubt it would change his plans or the way he feels about Ishar. Gavilar is dead, so unless he’s somehow going to play a role in SA5 beyond the prologue, he wouldn’t be relevant to any Ishar reveal. Ishar seems to have dropped the impersonation scheme and done other things for six years. Also, we know very little about him other than him being god-king of banana-pants town. So the reveal wouldn’t really change or add much there. That leaves the Stormfather as the last person I can think of who might be affected by this twist. Would he be angry at Ishar? Would he try to undermine Dalinar as a result (since Dalinar wants to try to work with Ishar)? It doesn’t sound very different from their current dynamic, as the Stormfather is often difficult and unhelpful with Dalinar. To be honest, I’d be more on board with this theory if I could see more dramatic potential. Does anyone have ideas about how this could play out? What are the juicy conflicts here?
  5. Is this actually stated anywhere? Because I can’t remember a confirmation.
  6. I think what’s going on here is that the Stormfather has limited options. He has instructions from Honor that he has to carry out, and if it happens that Dalinar is uniquely well placed to combat Odium and the Fused, then the Stormfather’s hand is forced. I think that’s how he ended up showing the visions to Dalinar, but without the intention to form a bond.
  7. I mean, I figured that each Dawncity is associated with a frequency, but this begs the question. Why do specific physical locations have their own frequency? Is this a natural feature, or did someone make them like this? Why is the resonant frequency expressed by the rock? It’s as though the rock was much more fluid (molten?) at some point, and a tone was played really really loudly, and then the rock froze in place. That’s what I would be thinking, if I were a scholar living on Roshar. But ... why? When? How? By whom? As for the Shattered Plains, it is implied (by one of the Listeners’ songs, if I recall correctly) that somebody did it. Who, why, and how? That’s unclear. It can’t be that somebody played two really loud tones that clashed, because that wouldn’t make the rock shatter. I guess somebody could have lobbed a lot of anti-light at the Plains, and the explosion shattered them, but then why would they have shattered in a perfectly symmetrical pattern? I don’t expect anyone to have answers yet, since there’s not much to go on. That’s why I’m expecting this to come up in future books (probably the second sequence).
  8. To add to this - Maya has a history of having a moment of clarity when it’s really urgent. Oathbringer has enough presence of mind to become less screamy after Dalinar does the right thing. I think deadeye spren, including the ones whose original Radiants are long gone, can be at least somewhat lucid for a brief period if it’s important and they have some form of bond with a person who is behaving in an oath-like way.
  9. I think it’s very likely a conversation like this will happen. It just won’t actually end in Dalinar releasing Odium, since that would be a weird anticlimax. Taravangian and Dalinar have been ideological foils for each other since OB, and their conflicting views on morality and leadership inform both of their characters. I have no doubt that they will try to talk each other around at some point in SA5.
  10. Off the top of my head, I can think of two running mysteries that have been in the background since WoK. What’s up with the Dawncities? Why do cities have those weird rock formations? Why do they look like resonant frequency patterns? Does this have to do with the formation of the Shattered Plains? Where do spren come from? It has been noted several times that there are no baby spren. But the spren are different ages, and they need to have started somehow. So how exactly do you get a ‘new’ spren, and what are ‘new’ spren like? How do their personalities form? Both of these seem like an opportunity for a big reveal in the back half.
  11. You should probably put the spoiler in a spoiler box. You’re using a quote box.
  12. I think the Everyone you know will be dust by the time you return line is Gavilar’s internal thoughts. That’s him reminding himself that he’s got bigger and more important things than his family, so he should distance himself. Take the route that’s less painful for him. (Apparently, his family’s feelings don’t merit Gavilar’s concern. What a guy.)
  13. Needing a living Shardblade could only work if it is a more recent development, since the Fused could kill Heralds in the past. During the early Returns, the Radiants hadn’t been founded yet, so there were no Shardblades to be had. Later, everyone with a Shardblade would have been on the Heralds’ side, and the Fused can’t steal a living Shardblade. As the others said, I think the Heralds’ longevity is more to do with being supernaturally tough.
  14. I also find Gavilar a fascinating ‘love to hate’ character. He was given so many puzzle pieces, but was unable to see the picture. He fixated on the Words as though they were like a magic spell - say the right thing, and poof - and never thought that the important thing might be the meaning of the Words. He studied The Way of Kings to the point of memorisation, but internalised none of it. So close, yet so far. And the Stormfather just wasn’t equipped to handle it. I think it’s in large part because the Stormfather isn’t human that he has so much trouble reading Gavilar, and in explaining what he needs Gavilar to do. As for why the Stormfather would choose Gavilar, I think the choice makes a lot of sense, in a Stormfather sort of way. You want somebody to win your war? Why not pick the warlord who unified ten notoriously aggressive tribes? Why not pick the king with power, wealth and a great army at his disposal? He doesn’t need to be nice. It doesn’t matter if he’s manipulative, violent, deceitful, or self-aggrandising, as long as he’s effective. As for whether the Stormfather can lie - I’ve reread everything we see the Stormfather say to Gavilar onscreen, and assuming he does genuinely intend for Gavilar to become a Herald at some point, then none of it is technically untrue. However, there is so much lying by omission, I don’t think the technicality should matter. So yes, it seems that the Stormfather can and will lie.
  15. That Prologue was a lot to digest, so I’ve gone through it and tried to pull out the relevant things that various characters do, say and think. Gavilar: Believes the Stormfather is guiding him towards Words that, if he finds them, will make him into a Herald. Believes the current Heralds are all on Braize, being tortured, per the Oathpact. Knows that a Return is coming, and thinks this will be the opportunity for him to replace one of the Heralds. The Stormfather has implied there’s only room for one new Herald. Believes that his experimental Light will be a good weapon against the Voidbringers, and thinks he may even be able to use it to control them. Understands that fighting without the new Light would be a huge problem. Does not recognise Szeth’s Honorblade, doesn’t connect Szeth’s abilities to either the Honorblades or Radiant powers. The Stormfather: Does not correct the things Gavilar thinks about the Heralds, presumably implied a lot of it, or lied outright. Talks about Gavilar becoming a ‘... Herald’, but hesitates. Encourages Gavilar to read Way of Kings and find the Words. Told Gavilar that spren can’t lie. Asks probing questions about how Gavilar will handle immortality. Has grown increasingly ‘suspicious and hostile’ (according to Gavilar). Refuses to reveal information about the causes of the Recreance, is very cagey about Knights Radiant in general. Talks about being instructed by Honor to show someone the visions to ‘prevent calamity’, but also refers to choosing to do this. Does not explain the discrepancy. Panics when a Herald dies, says he isn’t ‘ready’. Gives up on Gavilar when Gavilar reveals his plan to trigger endless Returns. Calls his efforts with Gavilar a ‘miscalculation’, blames both himself and Gavilar, says he will never trust Gavilar’s family again. If he tries showing the visions again, he will approach it differently. Thaidakar: Wants to get hold of Restares (unknown reasons, but Restares thinks Thaidakar wants to find Ba Ado Mishram). Promised Gavilar a ‘return of ancient powers’. (Probably a false promise?) Restares: Wants the ‘honor of men’ to return. Does not want the Radiants to return. Is afraid of another Voidbringer Return if the Radiants come back. (Possibly got this idea from Nale?) My interpretation: Restares wants people to start speaking and living by the Ideals again, but without the associated spren bonds and powers. Some of my thoughts and theories: Gavilar definitely makes a lot of assumptions, and the Stormfather could have used this to pull a ‘nothing I said was technically untrue’ trick. However, he does reference Gavilar becoming a Herald plainly, and ties this to Gavilar speaking the Words. There’s no doubt that the Stormfather is lying here. The Stormfather has emphasised the importance of The Way of Kings, which is essentially an introductory textbook to the philosophy of the First Ideal and Bondsmithing. He’s trying to get Gavilar to bond him, but has been untruthful with Gavilar about what that will achieve. He has also told Gavilar that he (the Stormfather) is unable to lie. He seems to be setting up Gavilar to be a Bondsmith who is manipulated and controlled by the Stormfather. So, what is the Stormfather’s end goal here? What was he planning on doing with Gavilar? I think the Stormfather genuinely planned to have Gavilar become a new Herald. As a Bondsmith, and with the Stormfather’s approval, Gavilar would have had the power to alter the Oathpact and insert himself into it. This is what the Stormfather was preparing him for, and the reason for the concern over what Gavilar would do once he became a Herald. And why is the Stormfather lying and withholding so much information? He wants to prevent the return of the Knights Radiant. He still blames the Radiants for what happened during the Recreance, and he doesn’t want a similar calamity to happen again. He keeps all relevant information to himself, so that Gavilar can’t use it to found a new order of Knights Radiant. That’s why he needs Gavilar to think that saying the Words will turn him into a Herald. If the Stormfather guides Gavilar through the intermediary steps, Gavilar never needs to know. And why would the Stormfather want a new Herald? Because the Oathpact is the solution that Honor came up with, and the Stormfather is, in large part, what is left of Honor. He doesn’t truly understand why the Oathpact can’t work in the long term. He only understands that his Heralds broke. What do you do when your Heralds break? You get new ones. Wow, this got longer than I intended! I hope somebody finds it useful or interesting.