realSEyOda

My Ultimate Hoid Theory

8 posts in this topic

Hi All,
 
First theory (YAY!) so let's dig in.
 
I'm very much obsessed with Hoid. What is he doing on the Shardworlds, what does he want, what's his ties to the current (and past) shardholders and what Investiture does he hold.

 
I'll start off with what I've discovered in my readings and then run into my theory.

Note: My theory is central to the Chronology of the Cosmere and knowledge of all Cosmere books. 

 

As I mentioned, this theory is based on documentation from all books so careful for spoilers for all Cosmere books. On that note, I'm just going to spoiler tag the whole post :P

 

 

WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT HOID

  • Hoid has been present on Sel, Scadrial, Nalthis and Roshar
  • Hoid has demonstrated:
    • Surgebinding (without a Spren) - Lightweaving demonstrated in Kaladin cell scene 
    • Feurochemy - I think he stores Connection to remain anonymous, Health as he's hard to kill and unafraid when threatened by Jasnah's shardblade
    • Awakening - perfect pitch observed in jail scene with Kaladin
    • Potentially Allomancy - suspected Soothing of Shallan
    • Maybe Sand Mastery? - unconfimed but the white sand/black sand when he's telling Siri and Lightsong a story on Nalthis made me suspicious
    • Efficiency in using Shardpools to access the Cognitive realm (on Roshar, Sel and Scadrial)
    • He has a bead of Lerasium - attained between The Lord Ruler's death and Ruin's release
  • He's been around for a long time - present at the time of the Shattering. Whether he's mortal and is manipulating time via Cognitive Realm travel, tapping Age via Feurochemy or just immortal, I can't be sure.
  • He know's a lot about the Cosmere (albeit less than Khriss) and knows of The Shattering of Adonalsium, personally knows the Shardholders and demonstrates knowledge of Shardic Intent (The Letter)

All of the above can be found out know from reading Cosmere books, Brandon's comments or the Coppermind Wikis.

 

I find it astonishing that Hoid has access to so many forms of Investiture and these are only the ones he has revealed to us! For anyone to gain so many forms of Investiture, you would think Hemalurgy would be involved normally, but I'm inlined to think otherwise.

 

ELANTRIS 10TH ANNIVERARY BONUS CONTENT SPOILER:

 

One titbit that I only found recently came out of the 10th Anniversary Edition of Elantris was a scene were Hoid is speaking to a Dark Seon after what appears to be an attempt to become an Elantrian. He admits failure but is excited by the secrets that remain unknown, then vanished into a Shardpool.

 

So I'm inclined to think that Hoid in fact didn't have any form Investiture until he got the Lerasium bead, just great knowledge of the Cosmere and Shadesmar, which gave him the ability to go out and seek Investiture for himself. 

 

On that point, let's talk about the method for gaining Investiture that we know he has.

 

LERASIUM

 

We know that Hoid has a piece of Lerasium, which he attained from the Well of Ascension. We now know from Mistborn: Secret History that this was attained after The Lord Ruler died and before Ruin was released.

 

The timeline is unclear but I assume that this came after Hoid's meeting with Eland when he is disguised as the leader of the Terris refugees. But he mentions at this time that The Keepers were killed or captured by Inquisitors (for Hemalurgy I presume) and that Sazed and Tindwyl are likely the only keepers left. So at this time, was Hoid not a Feurochemist? As he didn't state himself as a Feurochemist (and as the leader of the Terris refugees if he was I assume he would've) I'm assuming he didn't have Feurochemy at this time.

 

Brandon hinted at Hoid's intent for the Lerasium bead:

 

 

HEROWANNABE

Would you answer if Hoid used it (Lerasium) for Feruchemy?

BRANDON SANDERSON

His bead? Hoid’s bead was—He originally got it because he wanted to be an Allomancer. [Note that he doesn’t actually answer the question.]

 

So from here we know he wanted to use it to gain Allomancy but Brandon doesn't outright say he used it to become a Mistborn, so I'm going to say he didn't and he's used it for another purpose.

 

FORGERY

 

In The Emperor's Soul, based on Sel, we are introduced to the Investiture known as Forgemastery. The protagonist seems to be Realmatically aware and talks about creating a plausible fabrication that is imprinted on the soul of a person or object in the Spiritual Realm to make changes in the Physical Realm. This is in contrast to Soulcasting, which operates in the Cognitive Realm and requires the Soulcaster to convince an object in the Cognitive Realm to change its form in the Physical Realm.

 

In the original prologue to The Emperor's Soul, Hoid is The Fool that causes Shai to get caught and presumably arranges the assassination of the Emperor to give her the opportunity to survive, all the while making off with the Spear. However, while this was deleted, the following commentary is found on Brandon's website.

 

In terms of canonicity, you will notice that various details in the above scene contradict with details of Shai’s imprisonment in the final version of the novella. However, Brandon considers a conversation between Shai and the Fool (Hoid) very much like the one presented above to be a part of official continuity.

 

So this means Hoid was on Sel, working with a Master Forger (and full knowledge of the capabilities of that form of Investiture), he betrays Shai and then vanishes. As The Emperor's Soul occurs before the original Mistborn trilogy, Hoid knows that he can manipulate his Spiritweb to gain other forms of Investiture if his Spiritweb is first modified to attain Forgery. He subsequently gains the means to do so when he gets his bead of Lerasium in The Well of Ascension, which can overwrite a person's Spiritual DNA (Spiritweb).

 

BRANDON SANDERSON (PARAPHRASED)

 

Lerasium overwrites Spiritual DNA. It can do some interesting things, and can overwrite your Spiritual DNA in different ways if you do it right. If a Surgebinder ate lerasium, he would become an Allomancer, but Brandon implied other things could be done.

 

This got me thinking, so I tweeted Brandon:

 

ME: 

Can Forgemastery be used to rewrite a person's Spiritweb?

 

BRANDON SANDERSON:

That's basically what Forgery always does.

 

 

HOW I THINK HOID GOT ALL HIS INVESTITURE

 

Given the information we have learned in Mistborn Era 2 that Hemalurgy modifies the Spiritweb (a Hermalurgic spike takes Attributes or Investiture from the source person's Spiritweb and attach it the target person's Spiritweb).

 

I personally don't see Hoid using Hermalurgy because he doesn't like killing people (and he'd have to kill A LOT of people to get all the Investiture he has).

 

So I propose Hoid used his bead of Lerasium to modify his Spiritweb to gain Forgemastery and has systematically rewritten his Spiritweb to gain all forms of Investiture, either all at once, or as he's needed them.

 

MY THEORY

 

I subscribe to the theory that Rayse/Odium and Bavadin/Autonomy are working together and wreaking havoc across the Cosmere. I think that Autonomy = Trell and he's attempting to weaken Harmony while Odium is tied up (or trapped) in the Greater Roshar system. 

 

In The First Letter, Hoid admits he's perpetuating a grudge against Rayse & Bavadin in his quest.

 

You have accused me of arrogance in my quest. You have accused me of perpetuating my grudge against Rayse and Bavadin. Both accusations are true. 

- The First Letter

 

He knows the power they hold as Aona/Devotion, Skai/Dominion and Tanavast/Honor have all been killed and their Shards splintered as a result of Odium (and possibly Autonomy's) attacks.

 

So Hoid is bolstering his power by gaining all forms of Investiture so he can become the 17th Shard - Wit - by combining all forms of Investiture to take down Rayse/Odium.

 

Khriss knows this and fears the repercussions of his actions, which is why she formed the 17th Shard and recruited Baon, Galladon and Demoux, provided them with knowledge of Worldhopping and sent them after Hoid.

 

Proof Khriss is 17th Shard: Strong suggestions that Khriss is the author of Ars Arcanum here and the below quote indicates that the author is either Hoid or a member of 17th shard and we know Hoid isn't the author:

 

WETLANDERNW

In whose voice is the "Ars Arcanum" written? Hoid's?

BRANDON SANDERSON

I've avoided answering that question. It's either Hoid or a member of the Seventeenth Shard. That's as much answer as I'm giving anyone right now.

FOOTNOTE

Brandon has later stated that the Ars Arcana Author is not Hoid.

Theoryland

 

Thanks for reading, I know this was fairly long. Let me know your thoughts :)

Edited by realSEyOda
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A couple of points:
Hoid almost certainly uses Yolish Lightweaving, not Surgebinding and has likely had that ability for a very long time.

He uses time dilation techniques so he hasn't lived through all the years he's been alive but he is also older than should be possible so a little of both.
He definitely doesn't use Hemalurgy, Brandon has confirmed this.
Forging doesn't have enough Investiture to bestow abilities like Allomancy without extra assistance, it's a pretty low-Investiture system.
He uses Feruchemy to know where to go so I'd say he probably had it when he encountered Elend and just didn't want to reveal it.

 

 

 

 

QUESTION
Aha! Yes! Uh, ok, second thing. My brother and I have been debating about Hoid and how he got his abilities. We have a couple theories. One of them is Hemalurgy.
BRANDON SANDERSON

Ok…

QUESTION

The other has to do with the portals into the worlds themselves, because the birds in Sixth of Dusk-

BRANDON SANDERSON

Ok, he does not have Hemalurgy. He has powers that predate the Shattering of Adonalsium. Not all of his powers predate, but he does have powers that predate.

 

 

 

 

ERIC LAKE ()
Can Hoid jump through time? If so, can Shards jump through time?
BRANDON SANDERSON
Hoid, so far, has only moved forward in time. He has not 'lived' all of those years, but has used some time dilation techniques. That said, he is far older (both in relative and real time) than a normal person can live.
TAG

 

 

LADY RADAGU
If Shai were to gain a Shardblade, then she gave it up, could she create an Essence Mark that represented the history where she still had the Blade? If she then applied the Essence Mark could she summon the Shardblade or a copy of it?
BRANDON SANDERSON

So doing that sort of thing, like rewriting herself even to be an Allomancer, or something like this.... This is possible, but, in order to gain the Investiture she wants to have, she will have to input that much in Investiture, which her current magic system is not capable of doing. Okay? Alright, so, a rewrite so that I have a Shardblade would require some sort of hacking of her magic system, which is currently impossible to her in her current situation.

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*snip*

 

Khriss knows this and fears the repercussions of his actions, which is why she formed the 17th Shard and recruited Baon, Galladon and Demoux, provided them with knowledge of Worldhopping and sent them after Hoid.

 

Proof Khriss is 17th Shard: Strong suggestions that Khriss is the author of Ars Arcanum here and the below quote indicates that the author is either Hoid or a member of 17th shard and we know Hoid isn't the author:

 

*snip*

 

We know that Khriss is not 17th Shard by WoB from this most recent JordanCon

 

[55:18]

Q: In Secret History, is Khriss working with the 17th Shard at that time?

A: Khriss works with anybody who is interested in the information that she has. She is a...no, not a freelancer, really, she is a...She’d get along with Edward Snowden, right? She is for the good of the Cosmere in her opinion, she is providing this information. She thinks it’ll be useful for everyone. So if the 17th Shard comes to her and says “We want to know this” and she knows it, she will tell them. If Hoid comes to her and says “I want to know this”, she would tell him. So Khriss will work with anyone who she thinks their motives are...are for the good of the Cosmere in general.

Q: Not strictly a mercenary…?

A: No, not a mercenary, she’s kind of a freedom of information type person.

(source)

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We know that Khriss is not 17th Shard by WoB from this most recent JordanCon

Eh, I feel like he kind of wiggled out of that question. He never explicitly said that she was or wasn't with the 17th Shard. She could be working with the 17th Shard, as well as those other things. It's really just a matter of interpretation.
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Maybe as an independent agent. It's hard to imagine someone assigning missions to her after that WoB.

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Eh, I feel like he kind of wiggled out of that question. He never explicitly said that she was or wasn't with the 17th Shard. She could be working with the 17th Shard, as well as those other things. It's really just a matter of interpretation.

Unless she and Baon had a falling out, I would assume she's at the very least associated with the 17th Shard. I hope they're still cool with each other. Her running around with Nazh kind of makes me suspect there is a rift between them. Unless she sent him with Raoden and Demoux on the mission from the 17th Shard to find Hoid. I'm gonna go with she sent him on the mission.

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I don't believe Raoden was ever sent anywhere. The grouchy guy from the Ishikk Interlude is Galladon.

 

Or were you referring to Elrao, from the Ire? Who were you referring to? 

Edited by Varangian
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Forging doesn't have enough Investiture to bestow abilities like Allomancy without extra assistance, it's a pretty low-Investiture system.

He uses Feruchemy to know where to go so I'd say he probably had it when he encountered Elend and just didn't want to reveal it.

 

    From the quote you provided, it seems more like forging (Like Feruchemy) depends more on what the person has to offer than what the magic system has to offer.  The quote states that to get something out of Forgery, you have to put an equal(ish) amount in.  Also, we have never seen Hoid using more than one magic system at one time.  So, there is always the possibility that he is just putting something he already has (Yolish Lightweaving) to gain something else.  Also, we are dealing with the possibility that Hoid is a full lerasium mistborn here.  That is a lot of investiture to work with. 

 

    Personally, these things make a lot of sense.  The main problems are how Hoid gained awareness of Cosmere events in the first place, and how he gained world hopping abilities.  If he is Yolish, which I am pretty sure is fact now, how did he get to Elantris?  How has he lived so long? So on and so forth.

 

   I think a lot of thought was put into this idea.  Some things are definitely off, but that has already been said.  Personally, I love the idea that Hoid wants to become the Shard of Wit.  It just seems so... fitting.  :D

Edited by Magestar
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