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Hello all, I have invested some stake in the idea that Cusicesh the Protector is the third Sibling, referred to as a sleeping "they" by the Stormfather in Oathbringer. The Stormfather refuses to divulge more information than their existence and their relation to himself and the Nightwatcher. Cusicesh is described in Interlude I-5 of the Way of Kings as a spren of great size (over 100 feet tall) with four arms and a body with a deep blue center. It* rises out of the ocean at the same time every day (7:46am, though I won't pretend to know what that means,) and looks toward the Origin for the full ten minutes of its "performance". While doing so, it rapidly changes between human faces--male and female. Axies cannot tell if there are any repetitions of the faces shown. People who have watched Cusicesh have reported feeling drained afterwards. From Oathbringer's exploration of the Cognitive Realm, there is mention of a link between humanity and the spren. If the Sibling is "sleeping" as the Stormfather said, I believe they would still need to sustain that interaction with humanity. So, everyday, Cusicesh wakes up from its pseudo-hibernation, drains some energy from onlookers to sustain itself, and looks toward the Origin with longing, bearing the faces of those it bonded with in the past, then goes back to sleep. *Though I believe Cusicesh to be the Sibling in question, my belief does not constitute as evidence for sentience in said spren, so I will use the pronouns given to me from the book for Cusicesh until I am proven correct or other pronouns are given.
I have recently been doing some re-reading of the Stormlight Archive, and some new clues stood out to me about the nature of the third Bondsmith spren. So, naturally, I wrote a whole essay about it. Proceed at your own risk! I don't think I've seen this theory discussed before, but my apologies if it has been. (Also, it's late, so I don't promise coherency.) My theory is that The Sibling is a spren that is somehow related to or representative of the moons of Roshar, particularly Nomon. Further, I think the destruction of New Natanan and the Shattered Plains may have been what harmed The Sibling and caused it to “slumber.” Still reading? Ok, here’s why I think these things: The main basis for this theory comes from the scene in which Shallan, Adolin, and Bridge Four confront the Midnight Mother. During that confrontation, Shallan notes the artwork: This seems to be a depiction of all the spren that are capable of forming bonds with Radiants. That means that the first three spren Shallan describe are actually depictions of the Bondsmith spren. So we have a cloud of energy; that seems to obviously be the Stormfather. We have a woman in the shape of the tree; this could be the Nightwatcher. That leaves us with a man hovering before a blue disc. This description is uncannily similar to the end paper art we have of Ishar. (Here) You’ll note that the discs in the background definitely look like the three moons of Roshar, with the smaller Salas and Mishim on either side of Nomon. So, why is there a picture of Ishar and the moons next to depictions of the Radiant spren? My thought is that the moons must somehow be related to The Sibling. (Of course, the other argument is that these are not depictions of the Bondsmith spren, but actually of Honor and Cultivation. But does that make Ishar some secret shard? Did people view him as on a level equal to Honor and Cultivation? He does seem pretty insistent that he is a god right now. But still, I’m going to stick with the Bondsmith spren depiction idea for now.) Additional support for the idea that the moons are related to the third Bondsmith spren: I find it interesting that the Stormfather always refers to this sibling in the plural. This could be purely to obscure the gender. Or it could be because the spren represents multiple things, rather like a collective noun. In this case, we have a spren that represents the moon, and Roshar just so happens to have three of them. And further, it’s understandable why the Stormfather refers to this spren as his sibling, but why does everybody else seem to call it The Sibling? Sibling to what? In the epigraphs, even a former Radiant, who should have more knowledge about who/what the third spren is, refers to it as the Sibling, as if that’s the only name it goes by. If it’s just because it’s the sibling Bondsmith spren, then why do Radiants refer to the Stormfather by his unique name, but not the Sibling? I find it interesting that the Shin refer to the moons as the three sisters. And Wit, in his story of Nomon, refers to the relationships among the moons as siblings. Speaking of that story that Wit told (and Sigzil attempted to tell, unsuccessfully) If my theory is in any way right, and if there is any truth at all in Wit’s story, then it brings some interesting implications about the relationship between Nomon’s spren and the Natanatan people, maybe even giving a clue as to what happened to the Sibling. The story tells about how Mishim traded places with Tsa, a mortal, and Tsa conceived a child with Nomon. We know that the story alludes to the fact that Natanatans had Aimian blood in them. But I think it may also be a hint about the Sibling (assuming I’m right about the connection with Nomon). Interestingly, this story is the only other mention of siblings, besides the Sibling in Oathbringer. Also, purely coincidentally I’m sure, I find it interesting that the epigraphs about the Sibling begin in the chapter following Wit’s story. The story clearly establishes a connection between the people of Natanatan and Nomon. This could also imply that there’s a connection between the people of Natanatan and the Sibling. Perhaps the Sibling even originated or lived in Natanatan. Before I go any further, let’s go back to those epigraphs for a second. In them, the Elsecaller who is recording the memory seems to believe that the Sibling is withdrawing from the Radiants, not because it intended to or because the Radiants are no longer worthy, but because the cognitive reflection has changed. In other words, people are thinking about the Sibling differently, and so the Sibling has itself changed. We know that the kingdom of Natanatan was destroyed, and the Shattered Plains (once Stormseat, the capital of Natanatan) was, well, shattered. Perhaps it was this shattering and the loss of Natanatan that caused the harm to the Sibling, which caused it to withdraw. Perhaps because the people were no longer there, they were no longer thinking of the Sibling, causing it to “slumber.” Also, Wit ends his story with, Perhaps this is a reflection, again, of what happened to the Sibling. It learned of loss, somehow. The loss of Natanatan? Other Interesting Tidbits: In Way of Kings, Dalinar refers to Natanatan as the Granite Kingdom. I don’t really know if this is relevant, but stone is important on Roshar. Additionally, they were a people apparently known for building towers. Again, I think this strengthens the idea that the people of Natanatan were perhaps involved in the creation of the tower in Urithiru and also had some connection to the Sibling, which we suspect powers Urithiru. And, I find it curious that Oathbringer mentions that New Natanan was working with Dalinar, but we hear literally nothing about them: This seems fishy to me. I think those New Natanans are going to become important. And lastly, we have this little bit from an interlude, which has some interesting mythology surround the people of Natanatan. Well, the night is darkest is just before the rising of Nomon. Also, an Everstorm really helps to make things dark. Perhaps we need the people of New Natanatan to come back, to restore the Sibling and thus restore the tower. And this lengthy essay doesn’t even begin to get into possible connections with Aimia. Or what on earth Roshar Ishar is doing in that depiction of the moons in Urithiru. And, is there any significance to the son Tsa had, the son born to be a god?
I've always found it weird that there are only 9 Unmade. I know Brandon mentioned that the 9 unmade that were similar to the orders of knights and the Bond smith was the exception. Could there be a reason for this? My theory so far has been that since, the bond smiths bond with three "god" spren the Stormfather, the Nightwatcher, and the "Sibling". And the stormfather is of Honor, the nightwatcher of Cultivation, than the sibling must be of Odium. Could the bondsmith be the replacement of the Unmade? This bondsmith wouldn't necessarily be evil, but we've seen through Maleta that the KnightRadiants aren't all good and righteous. The bondsmith would see the other side of the conflict, this could explain some of the conflict within the Knights. Is my theory reasonable? Do you guys have any better theories for this? If I'm right, who could the sibling be?
We all know about the Nahel bond between a special type of spren and a Knight Radiant, giving the spren the ability to fully manifest in the physical realm while giving the Radiant two Surges and the ability to take in stormlight on a continual basis to power these surges. In this thread, I speculated about a Gemheart bond, where a spren is captured inside a gemheart and bonds with the host of the gemheart: Human (e.g., Aesudan and Amaram), Parshendi (different spren give different forms), Various gravitation-defying creatures bonded to mandras (chasmfiends, greatshells, skyeels, and most likely thunderclasts), and Fabrials including Soulcasters and Urithiru. Venli appears to have formed a Nahel and a Gemheart bond with Timbre, as well as retaining her Gemheart bond with the Envoy spren to retain her Parshendi form of power. I believe that we'll soon see another dual-bond among Navini, the Sibling, and Urithiru using both the Nahel and Gemheart bonds to tie all three together. There have been many speculating that the Sibling is Urithiru, including my own speculation in the Gemheart bond thread. I want to clarify that the Sibling is not Urithiru but rather the spren that bonds to and powers Urithiru as well as bonding to her bondsmith. If the Sibling's bondsmith abandoned his or her oaths during the Recreance, that may explain why the Sibling and Urithiru have slumbered ever since, awaiting a new bondsmith to return. One of the WoR epithets tells us that only one of the bondsmiths is always with Urithiru, probably because the Sibling bondsmith will need to stay with her spren that will be captured inside Urithiru's gemheart, powering Urithiru. So, what makes me think this bondsmith will be Navani? All primary point-of-view characters have chapter art to denote the chapters which are primarily their own. Even though she'd had minor points-of-view before, Navani got her first primary POV chapter with Oathbringer in only one chapter: Chapter 95, Pieces of a Fabrial. The chapter art representation of Navani appears to be a giant, luminescent gemheart encased in what might be a fabrial: Obviously, one can argue that the fabrial image is perfect for Navani simply because Navani is the goddess of fabrials. But I would argue that this is probably what makes her the perfect choice as the sole Radiant whose bond is both Nahel and Gemheart. Who better to operate the Urithiru fabrial than Navani? Who better to stay with Urithiru than the ostensible Queen of Urithiru? Who better to be another bondsmith than Dalinar's wife?