Ookla the Shadow

Kelsier - spoiler question and speculation

14 posts in this topic

This is a question that I have been thinking a lot about lately. Not one that I have really dug super deeply for answers on though, so apologies if there is a wobs on this already or if someone has asked this already! Just assume spoilers for all cosmere below, hope that’s ok:

Spoiler

So we know that Kelsier became a cognitive shadow, and eventually somehow got another body (the same one??), likely through hemulurgy or something. Now he is bouncing around the cosmere as Thaidakar and being super legit but sketchy and there’s lots of questions there. But- what happens if his new body is killed? Can he be killed? Would he continue on as a spiritual cognitive shadow again automatically and start working on making another new body? Or would he need to be supercharged with investiture again to prevent him from moving on to the Beyond? 

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Posted (edited)

3 hours ago, CognitiveShadow said:

But- what happens if his new body is killed? Can he be killed?

I think, It really depends on the circumstance.
 

Was he just killed regularly? If he just got stabbed and his body died a regular death again, i believe he should just reappear in the Cognitve Realm again, still a Shadow, just without a body again. Or maybe he would need an infusion of Investiture after dying to sustain the Shadow

 

Or was he stabbed with an Anti-Investiture knife/weapon? If so, hed probably go to the beyond instantly(do beings killed with Nighblood/Anti-Investiture move on? Or just dissapear?)

 

Any number of things could happen really. Hope that helps!

Edited by Eternal Khol
Typos
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6 hours ago, CognitiveShadow said:
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So we know that Kelsier became a cognitive shadow, and eventually somehow got another body (the same one??), likely through hemulurgy or something. Now he is bouncing around the cosmere  Scadrial as Thaidakar and being super legit but sketchy and there’s lots of questions there. But- what happens if his new body is killed? Can he be killed? Would he continue on as a spiritual cognitive shadow again automatically and start working on making another new body? Or would he need to be supercharged with investiture again to prevent him from moving on to the Beyond? 

 

FTFY - as that is the reason (or primary reason) Thaidakar is being "sketchy." He really wants to bounce around the Cosmere, but can't leave Scadrial (as he saw in Secret History when he felt the increased pull of connection trying to get to the Ire Fortress).

As for the question, I think we can't know the answer without knowing how he got his physical body. If we consider of known/suspected Shadows on the Physical Realm:

  • Returned die normally, or when expending the Divine Breath that animates their corpse and making them returned
    • E.G. Blushweaver killed by having her throat slit, Lightsong dying to heal the Godking
  • Heralds/Fused return to the Cognitive Realm on Braize, but that is a feature of the Oathpact so we don't know if they would go to Shadesmar on Roshar now that the Oathpact is broken.
  • Shades (threnody) are just weird because what happened in that system made everything there weird - so they may or may not apply in any of these theories.
2 hours ago, Eternal Khol said:

was he stabbed with an Anti-Investiture knife/weapon?

I think this would be the case for any "flavor" of Shadow or invested being in the Physical Realm (with or without a physical body, as Phendorana's fate shows)

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14 minutes ago, Treamayne said:

I think this would be the case for any "flavor" of Shadow or invested being in the Physical Realm (with or without a physical body, as Phendorana's fate shows)

What?

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I think the only way to answer the question concretely would be to figure out the mechanisms that are allowing Kelsier to survive in this new body. I'm pretty sure it's Hemalurgy, but as he is the only example of a cognitive entity being tied to a physical body through that metallic art, we can't be sure what would happen.

The Heralds, who are technically Cognitive Shadows, just turn back into those Shadows when their bodies die, but as we see with other Cognitive entities, there are differences in what would happen. I think there's a possibility that if you were to just kill his body, he would still survive Cognitively, because all you did was sever his link to that body. For that same reason, his body would probably die if you pulled his Spike out, but his Shadow would still live. That's what I think, at least.

Now, you could try to trap Kelsier in a gemstone, like what was done with Jezrien at the end of Oathbringer. I think that causes some problems that might end Kelsier's Cognitive Shadow. (It's been a while since I looked into that whole mess of mechanics, though, so I'm not sure.)

As for an Anti-Investiture weapon...I think that we can say for sure that one of those will kill any Cognitive Shadow, Kelsier included.

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Without further information on how Kelsier acquired his new body, I assume that he exists independently from the body itself (as he was transformed into a shadow without a physical body, unlike a Returned, for example). Thus, I assume that killing him in regular means (i.e. no anti-Investiture, gemstone raysium dagger, Nightblood, etc.) will simply separate the shadow from the body and he will survive in the cognitive realm.

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7 hours ago, Eternal Khol said:

What?

Also found this (fragment) WoB:

Quote

So I needed another tool for the late part of the cosmere, when people have figured out Cognitive Shadows; How do you destroy a Cognitive Shadow? Well there are ways, but throw some anti-Investiture at them and that's guaranteed, you are gonna kill that Shadow.

It's halfway through the last paragraph. . .

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Posted (edited)

34 minutes ago, Treamayne said:

Also found this (fragment) WoB:

It's halfway through the last paragraph. . .

Ok, so using Anti-Investititure kills cognitive Shadows... isnt that what i said in my first comment? I still dont get what your trying to prove to me.

Edited by Eternal Khol
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@Eternal Khol Did you not get the PM? I was unsure of the meaning of your "What" and thought you did not know/recall who Phendorana was. As for the quote where I mentioned her; all I was trying to accomplish was to add evidence to support your quoted statement. 

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3 minutes ago, Treamayne said:

@Eternal Khol Did you not get the PM? I was unsure of the meaning of your "What" and thought you did not know/recall who Phendorana was. As for the quote where I mentioned her; all I was trying to accomplish was to add evidence to support your quoted statement. 

@Treamayne I just checked, i did get your PM, i just hopped on though and clicked on the first notification it gave me, which was your response here.

It does make more sense though after reading it lol, so thank you:)

 

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Posted (edited)

Assuming he wasn't 'killed' with something capable of annihilating him or otherwise messing with his spiritweb (Nightblood, the Preservation equivalent of anti-stormlight, maybe some kinds of hemalurgy), I think that killing his body or pulling his spike would dump him back into the Cognitive Realm annoyed but not really harmed. His ability to persist indefinitely comes from the fact that he's a Sliver, meaning that his soul has been permanently expanded by holding Preservation. I don't think his current method of bodily incarnation affects that in any way, so if you 'cut the string' he'd just hang out until he could make a new one.

Oh, and as mentioned he can't 'bounce around the Cosmere right now though he'd like to. He uses tricks to make people think that he can meaningfully travel to other worlds.

Edited by Weltall
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Posted (edited)

Thanks everyone for the great comments! I think I am pretty well aligned with these core arguments that you people made: (stormlight 5 and cosmere spoilers)

Spoiler

Kelsier and any other cognitive shadow would be totally destroyed if killed by an anti investiture weapon

He likely got his new body through Hemelurgy, and any physical attack that would “kill” a mortal would just sever his connection to that body, leaving him once again as a spirit cognitive shadow stuck in the cognitive realm

Thanks for the correction, definitely misspoke there — Kelsier is not able to leave Scadrial and is therefore not bouncing around the Cosmere haha just sending seons in trench coats instead.

Super excited for the next few books and secret books coming out! Hopefully we can get some cool glimpses into how Kelsier is interacting with the Cosmere. Thanks again everyone!

Edited by CognitiveShadow
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20 hours ago, Weltall said:

Assuming he wasn't 'killed' with something capable of annihilating him or otherwise messing with his spiritweb (Nightblood, the Preservation equivalent of anti-stormlight, maybe some kinds of hemalurgy), I think that killing his body or pulling his spike would dump him back into the Cognitive Realm annoyed but not really harmed. His ability to persist indefinitely comes from the fact that he's a Sliver, meaning that his soul has been permanently expanded by holding Preservation. I don't think his current method of bodily incarnation affects that in any way, so if you 'cut the string' he'd just hang out until he could make a new one.

Oh, and as mentioned he can't 'bounce around the Cosmere right now though he'd like to. He uses tricks to make people think that he can meaningfully travel to other worlds.

Yes, I think so. After Ruin attacks him and then is distracted by Vin becoming Preservation, Kelsier says the Beyond can't take him unless he wishes it to or he is completely destroyed. So anti-Investiture destruction would work, but not physical body death.

(Stormlight spoilers)

Quote

Zahel in RoW says that surviving after a new bodily death is about the strength (Connection? Access to Investiture?) of a Cognitive Shadow. Weak ones stay dead if killed again, strong ones like the Fused- "connected directly to Odium to feed on his power" - survive.

Kelsier, boosted by the Well then becoming a Sliver, is surely a strong one.

 

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On 5/18/2022 at 11:59 AM, cometaryorbit said:

Yes, I think so. After Ruin attacks him and then is distracted by Vin becoming Preservation, Kelsier says the Beyond can't take him unless he wishes it to or he is completely destroyed. So anti-Investiture destruction would work, but not physical body death.

(Stormlight spoilers)

 

These are super good points, thanks for sharing.

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