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There's been a lot of speculation about what the secret was that destroyed the Knights Radiant, as well as speculation into the causes or mechanics of the Desolations and the Oathpact. I have a wild theory that connects the two. There's probably a thousand things wrong with it, and even I see a bunch of holes and leaps in logic, but hopefully it will at least be entertaining. It starts with a WoB exchange I saw posted in another topic earlier today by Steeldancer, so credit goes to them for finding this quote: So we know that the Heralds all being present on Roshar causes another Desolation to occur. The question is, why? Well let's consider what we know of Worldhopping, because that is essentially what is happening. Spren (and perhaps originally the Listeners themselves) come from Braize to Roshar. Other worldhoppers transition between the Cognitive realm and the Physical realm using Perpendicularities. Other WoB have confirmed that perpendicularities could be caused by a massive amount of Investiture. I believe it was confirmed that Jasnah essentially did a miniature version of this to return to the physical world. My theory is that the Heralds act like Investiture lodestones. If they stay long enough in the world, there is a kind of critical mass that occurs, creating enough of a perpendicularity for Odium's forces to transition en masse into Roshar. This is basically how the new Everstorm worked. Once a critical mass of Fused Listeners was reached, they were able to call the storm. I believe the Everstorm itself is Odium’s perpendicularity on Roshar, at least this time around. We know it carries Voidspren with it, and could be what allows them to come into the Physical realm in large numbers. We also know that it was created by a large number of Fused (ie, Invested) Listeners pooling their energies. That sounds like a recipe for a perpendicularity to me. Now what if the Highstorm works in the exact opposite way (which would make sense, since they are reversed in every other way). The Highstorm is described by (suspiciously colour-obsessed and oddly familiar) “Zahel” as “invested to the hilt and looking for somewhere to stick it.” (As an aside: god bless “Zahel”). The Highstorm disperses Investiture. It takes a huge amount, maybe enough to form a perpendicularity, but then spreads it out across literally the entire world. I submit that this was its primary purpose (because remember, the Stormfather has been tasked with keeping the Highstorms coming, and presumably Honor would have some reason for unleashing these things periodically upon the world). My theory is that there are other ways to enable (or hasten) a Desolation. Perhaps with sufficiently concentrated Investiture, Odium can create a workaround, or at least speed things up, with less time between Desolations. The Highstorm is a check against this by dispersing Investiture, whereas the Everstorm keeps it concentrated (which is which it doesn’t infuse gems with Stormlight). So Honor works to prevent (large) perpendicularities from forming, and Odium tries to create more. Smaller perpendicularities ensure that the two worlds will never be entirely isolated, but might not facilitate a lare-scale invasion. The Oathpact, then , could be an agreement. Honor creates a bargain by which Odium has a shot at Roshar every once and a while. Honor essentially creates the Honorblades as a controlled means of opening a path between worlds by way of highly concentrated Investitute (which could be why Syl refers to Szeth using a dangerous amount of Stormlight with the Honorblade). At the same time though, he makes them double as a means of fighting against the very invasion they facilitate. Odium, in turn, agrees not to just come over to Roshar and destroy it himself, an agreement that binds him even after Honor's death. So how do the Knights Radiant fit in? Well we already know that they were not intended by Honor. They were the result of the spren taking it upon themselves to mimic what he had done. They mimic the Honorblades, which are presumably involved with the Oathpact (see above). What if, unintentionally, they have re-created certain aspects of the Oathpact as well, as a side effect of the nahel bond? The Heralds, when concentrated on Roshar, kicked off Desolations. The Fused, when concentrated on Roshar, kicked off the Everstorm. And for however many centuries, human beings, Invested to the hilt, as it were, were concentrating themselves in a specific location: Urithiru. What if this was enough to, if not cause the Desolations, at least exacerbate them in some way? What if it created enough of a perpedicularity to allow some of Odium's forces onto Roshar in a consistent manner, like a door propped open even between the Desolations. Spoilers from Edgedancer: To me, this seems like the kind of revelation that would utterly crush a group dedicated to sacrificing for the good of all. To learn that they and their spren had in fact been causing or at least hastening/worsening the Desolations, that all of their efforts and sacrifice were only perpetuating a cycle of endless violence, I could see that breaking them, and causing the Recreance.