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robardin

Marsh's hemalurgic spikes for Feruchemy

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On-screen, we've seen Inquisitor Marsh exhibit three Feruchemical abilities: using pewter (he grows beefy while choking Vin in Fadrex City), steel (he blurs in speed while fighting Elend), and gold (multiple instances of healing). He is implied to have gained the spike for F-gold as part of his original set of Inquisitor spikes, before Ruin went about massively upgrading him to use him as his primary pawn.

As the Coppermind entry notes, we can infer he has a spike for F-atium, as he's documented by WoB to have survived into Era 2 (and will last for a good while further) by Compounding atium the way TLR had done. Why Ruin saw fit to use up one of a small number of Feruchemists available to spike out attributes from to give Marsh a spike for F-atium is unknown; the most obvious one being, he wanted to continue to use Marsh around the Cosmere after destroying Scadrial, and thus wanted to ensure his longevity.

If that's the case, we can also infer Marsh has a spike for F-bronze, with which he can Compound wakefulness. Why? For the same reason that TLR must have constantly tapped an infinite bronzemind: once past his mortal lifespan he cannot fall asleep, as one cannot tap a metalmind unconsciously, and he needs to maintain a constant draw on an atiummind to stay alive with The Rashek Maneuver. So concurrent with that constant drawing of youth must be a constant drawing of wakefulness.

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I never considered the wakefulness limitation, that's really interesting.  For at least a little while it's possible he'd be able to tap enough ahead of a sleep that his accelerated aging would not kill him before he woke up, but the further away from his natural age the less viable that becomes.  But, it does mean he wouldnt have needed the F-Bronze until he was at least past his first lifetime, which introduces the possibility that he was able to get his hands on an early Medallion for R-Bronze rather than using a Spike to accomplish it.  He's got various friends in High places in those days, at least two of which might have been able to get him access to the secret of medallions. 

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2 minutes ago, Quantus said:

I never considered the wakefulness limitation, that's really interesting.  For at least a little while it's possible he'd be able to tap enough ahead of a sleep that his accelerated aging would not kill him before he woke up, but the further away from his natural age the less viable that becomes.  But, it does mean he wouldnt have needed the F-Bronze until he was at least past his first lifetime, which introduces the possibility that he was able to get his hands on an early Medallion for R-Bronze rather than using a Spike to accomplish it.  He's got various friends in High places in those days, at least two of which might have been able to get him access to the secret of medallions. 

True, but I'm separately trying to come up with a plausible accounting of all the additional spikes Ruin put into him from his original 11 after helping to bring down TLR to the "upwards of twenty" we see him with at the end of The Hero of Ages, and it seems to me that if he did get the spike for F-atium from Ruin (which there is a WoB about), and if we assume that the only reason Ruin would do that in the first place (rather than give more Feruchemical powers to other Inquisitors) would be to enable The Rashek Maneuver for his favorite pawn, then the other half of that Maneuver would require a spike for F-bronze as well.

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2 hours ago, robardin said:

If that's the case, we can also infer Marsh has a spike for F-bronze, with which he can Compound wakefulness. Why? For the same reason that TLR must have constantly tapped an infinite bronzemind: once past his mortal lifespan he cannot fall asleep, as one cannot tap a metalmind unconsciously, and he needs to maintain a constant draw on an atiummind to stay alive with The Rashek Maneuver. So concurrent with that constant drawing of youth must be a constant drawing of wakefulness.

You can burn pewter and suck in stormlight while unconscious.  We know you can't store but you might be able to tap instinctively.

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I am moving this to Mistborn, as this is not a topic related to the Coppermind itself.

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Most Inquisitors pushes and pulls were said to be very strong so they probably have F-iron. 

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14 hours ago, Karger said:

You can burn pewter and suck in stormlight while unconscious.  We know you can't store but you might be able to tap instinctively.


If you can burn in your sleep then they might be ok, the Compounding hack releases Feruchemical-ability while Burning the metalmind so it would be governed by Allamancy rules.  From what I can gather a Compounder has the choice to tap the burn energy directly or store it into another metalmind if they prefer (that seemed to be how Miles was doing it). 

16 hours ago, robardin said:

True, but I'm separately trying to come up with a plausible accounting of all the additional spikes Ruin put into him from his original 11 after helping to bring down TLR to the "upwards of twenty" we see him with at the end of The Hero of Ages, and it seems to me that if he did get the spike for F-atium from Ruin (which there is a WoB about), and if we assume that the only reason Ruin would do that in the first place (rather than give more Feruchemical powers to other Inquisitors) would be to enable The Rashek Maneuver for his favorite pawn, then the other half of that Maneuver would require a spike for F-bronze as well.

That's fair.  Lets see, according to the Coppermind list he has A-Steel, A-Iron, A-Pewter, A-Tin, A-Zinc, A-Durlumin, A-Atium, F-Pewter, F-Steel, F-Gold, and F-Atium.   That's eleven purely in metallic arts.  He'd also need a Lynchpin spike, and could always have some of the non-metallic arts enhancements (Copper, Zinc, Steel, & Iron spikes).  I strongly doubt he has any of the spiritual metals, simply because they werent particularly accessible in Era1 by design.  But if you assume he has, for the sake of argument, one each of the other enhancements, that brings his spike count up to 16.  Which is a number I particularly like...

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47 minutes ago, Quantus said:

If you can burn in your sleep then they might be ok, the Compounding hack releases Feruchemical-ability while Burning the metalmind so it would be governed by Allamancy rules.  From what I can gather a Compounder has the choice to tap the burn energy directly or store it into another metalmind if they prefer (that seemed to be how Miles was doing it). 

That's a good point: you don't actually tap the metalmind when Compounding, you burn it.  And we know that you can burn reflexively while unconscious (Vin), so I see no reason why you couldn't burn the metalmind in your sleep, getting the youth boost.  You may or may not be able to store the excess, but that shouldn't matter.  

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7 minutes ago, Scion of the Mists said:

That's a good point: you don't actually tap the metalmind when Compounding, you burn it.  And we know that you can burn reflexively while unconscious (Vin), so I see no reason why you couldn't burn the metalmind in your sleep, getting the youth boost.  You may or may not be able to store the excess, but that shouldn't matter.  

But burning an atiummind gives you a big 10x factored burst of youth, which the Compounder then stores into other atiumminds, and then taps those atiumminds at the correct rate to maintain the desired age.

It's established in the text that Sazed cannot fill a Feruchemical metalmind while asleep, so I guess it's an open question whether or not that would apply to someone like the Lord Ruler who'd have far more years of practice, or if it would equally apply to tapping a metalmind while asleep.

Funny thing, though - the point about "The Lord Ruler could never sleep, or he'd die" was one of the first posts I saw on this board after discovering it that was like a "whoa, I never thought of that!" thing, and I assumed it was canonized with a WoB or something, but evidently not quite? (I just spent some time searching and there is only one joking confirmation about Lift being able to eat Rashek's dinner and suggesting she'd hit Kredik Shaw while he was asleep, but that was a light comment without thought)

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54 minutes ago, robardin said:

But burning an atiummind gives you a big 10x factored burst of youth, which the Compounder then stores into other atiumminds, and then taps those atiumminds at the correct rate to maintain the desired age.

It's established in the text that Sazed cannot fill a Feruchemical metalmind while asleep, so I guess it's an open question whether or not that would apply to someone like the Lord Ruler who'd have far more years of practice, or if it would equally apply to tapping a metalmind while asleep.

Funny thing, though - the point about "The Lord Ruler could never sleep, or he'd die" was one of the first posts I saw on this board after discovering it that was like a "whoa, I never thought of that!" thing, and I assumed it was canonized with a WoB or something, but evidently not quite? (I just spent some time searching and there is only one joking confirmation about Lift being able to eat Rashek's dinner and suggesting she'd hit Kredik Shaw while he was asleep, but that was a light comment without thought)

The indications Ive seen are that this middle set is optional: the Compounder can burn and either use the energy directly, or store it into a second Metalmind for later use.  But it doesnt require that second metalmind to be able to access the Compounded feruchemical charge, you can channel it directly from the burn the way allomancers do.

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Posted (edited)

14 minutes ago, Quantus said:

The indications Ive seen are that this middle set is optional: the Compounder can burn and either use the energy directly, or store it into a second Metalmind for later use.  But it doesnt require that second metalmind to be able to access the Compounded feruchemical charge, you can channel it directly from the burn the way allomancers do.

Yes, of course you can directly access the releasd Feruchemical attribute as a result of burning the metalmind with Allomancy, without storing it first into another metalmind.

But the way the mechanics of Compounding have been described, the released attribute is at a very high multiplier. When it is first expounded on by Sazed, he says: "[Rashek] would have to place that excess youth inside of another Feruchemical storage, I think. ... The Lord Ruler wouldn't have wanted all of that youth at once, so he'd have stored it inside of a piece of metal which he could slowly drain, keeping himself young." And as we saw, that is exactly what TLR did: store all of his Compounded youth in his atiummind arm bracers.

Of course, just as an Allomancer can keep a light, low burn (as of tin or pewter) versus a flare, it should be possible to "throttle" the burning of a metalmind. And even if throttling the high multiplier release of burning a metalmind would be difficult (like maintaining low speed control on a 250cc dirt bike versus an 1800cc Harley-Davidson Fat Boy), TLR would have had a long, long time to get good at it.

But that doesn't appear to be what he did, otherwise removing his bracers wouldn't have separated him from all of his atiumminds (he didn't have any inside of his stomach on a low burn). 

It also seems to me that maintaining fine control of Allomantic burning should require one to be awake, but we're probably entering WoB territory here. It could work that way, we just have no real evidence of it one way or the other, do we?

Edited by robardin
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3 hours ago, Dancer said:

Most Inquisitors pushes and pulls were said to be very strong so they probably have F-iron. 

Or F-Nicrosal

Also @robardin why did you start two separate posts, discussing largely the same thing? I like this other one.

 

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1 hour ago, robardin said:

But burning an atiummind gives you a big 10x factored burst of youth, which the Compounder then stores into other atiumminds, and then taps those atiumminds at the correct rate to maintain the desired age.

You could also just burn much slower to give yourself the correct rate.

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51 minutes ago, robardin said:

Yes, of course you can directly access the releasd Feruchemical attribute as a result of burning the metalmind with Allomancy, without storing it first into another metalmind.

But the way the mechanics of Compounding have been described, the released attribute is at a very high multiplier. When it is first expounded on by Sazed, he says: "[Rashek] would have to place that excess youth inside of another Feruchemical storage, I think. ... The Lord Ruler wouldn't have wanted all of that youth at once, so he'd have stored it inside of a piece of metal which he could slowly drain, keeping himself young." And as we saw, that is exactly what TLR did: store all of his Compounded youth in his atiummind arm bracers.

Of course, just as an Allomancer can keep a light, low burn (as of tin or pewter) versus a flare, it should be possible to "throttle" the burning of a metalmind. And even if throttling the high multiplier release of burning a metalmind would be difficult (like maintaining low speed control on a 250cc dirt bike versus an 1800cc Harley-Davidson Fat Boy), TLR would have had a long, long time to get good at it.

But that doesn't appear to be what he did, otherwise removing his bracers wouldn't have separated him from all of his atiumminds (he didn't have any inside of his stomach on a low burn). 

It also seems to me that maintaining fine control of Allomantic burning should require one to be awake, but we're probably entering WoB territory here. It could work that way, we just have no real evidence of it one way or the other, do we?

In the specific case of Atium burning to keep from aging yourself to death, I could easily buy that a compounder would instinctively burn just enough atium to keep from dying.  Instinct taking over to prevent death seems like a reasonable thing, even if it might not trigger in less extreme circumstances.  Given that Miles can tap Gold enough to heal even after most of his head was destroyed (which should be a bigger barrier than simply being asleep), I think it's reasonable to think that an Atium compounder coudl similarly avoid death as long as there is charged metal available to them.  

 

For what little it's worth, I do think that the whole limitation where only Bronze can be stored while you sleep is more of a Doylistic addition, otherwise nearly all ferrings would always store their max while sleeping with no literary downside, which would upset the innate balancing of feruchemy. But that's not to say there isnt Watsonian explanation, though the fact that there is an exception makes me think it's not going to be an absolute boundary.

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1 hour ago, Truthwatcher_17.5 said:

Or F-Nicrosal

Also @robardin why did you start two separate posts, discussing largely the same thing? I like this other one.

 

This one was the first one, where I posted it to the Coppermind forum basically suggesting an addition to the entry there for Marsh that he likely had a spike for F-bronze. In explaining why I thought he did, it spiraled into a spreadsheet-like checklist of 32 possible spikes he could have, the 20+ he was described to have, and trying to figure out which ones they were, which I then put into the Mistborn forum. Then a mod moved this one to the Mistborn forum as well. I guess they could be merged.

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1 hour ago, Karger said:

You could also just burn much slower to give yourself the correct rate.

Yes, I agree. However, it's also evident that that is NOT what The Lord Ruler actually did, otherwise removing his atiummind bracers would not have killed him, if he had slow-burning atium beads in his stomach as well.

So either he didn't keep slow-burn atiumminds to use in his sleep because (a) it can't be done; (b) it could be done, but he just didn't bother (because he could Compound bronze and never need to sleep); or (c) it could be done and he did a slow-burn-in-sleep thing to indulge in a little nap from time to time even though he didn't have to, just because he wanted a change up in his long, long life (like how Vin found that he spent some time aged, even though he wouldn't have to), and only as needed.

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24 minutes ago, robardin said:

Yes, I agree. However, it's also evident that that is NOT what The Lord Ruler actually did, otherwise removing his atiummind bracers would not have killed him, if he had slow-burning atium beads in his stomach as well.

That was not what TLR was doing at that particular moment.  He could certainly do it.

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20 minutes ago, Karger said:

That was not what TLR was doing at that particular moment.  He could certainly do it.

He could definitely do a slow-burning atiummind thing, in his stomach.

He definitely wasn't in the habit of doing that on a routine basis, as we saw by how he died.

The question is, could have he done a slow-burn in his sleep to maintain his age, if he wanted to sleep, which he didn't have to do.

To me it is not entirely analagous to burning pewter while unconscious to stay alive, as we've seen Vin and Elend both do, or to unconscious use of Stormlight or goldmind healing, because those are "staying alive" modes that matches one's physical self to the Spiritual model (the underlying basis for the way that F-gold or Stormlight healing works). And the whole reason the Lord Ruler quickly died without his atiumminds is because his Spiritual model "knew" it was being bypassed; his Spiritual self's "natural level" was far older. So that's something that just feels to me like it needs to be done consciously, especially if it's a matter of modulation.

On the otherh and, that might be the best explanation for Vin coming across Rashek-as-an-old-man. She interrupted him napping, and the unconscious "keep me alive" Allomantic burning of an atiummind results in him being at a near maximum for his natural physical age, requiring him to wake up and tap harder to get down to a form in his early twenties.

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32 minutes ago, robardin said:

 

To me it is not entirely analagous to burning pewter while unconscious to stay alive, as we've seen Vin and Elend both do, or to unconscious use of Stormlight or goldmind healing, because those are "staying alive" modes that matches one's physical self to the Spiritual model (the underlying basis for the way that F-gold or Stormlight healing works). And the whole reason the Lord Ruler quickly died without his atiumminds is because his Spiritual model "knew" it was being bypassed; his Spiritual self's "natural level" was far older. So that's something that just feels to me like it needs to be done consciously, especially if it's a matter of modulation.

I disagree, though it's a subtle difference:  TLR only died because he lost access to the Investiture that was facilitating the Change, it had nothing to do with his spiritual aspect overriding the Change.  I dont see why it should function any differently than Compounded Gold to keep yourself alive, and if Miles can do that without having a whole and functioning Brain, I entirely think that subconscious, minimal tapping of an Atium-mind to avoid death should be possible.  

 

32 minutes ago, robardin said:

On the otherh and, that might be the best explanation for Vin coming across Rashek-as-an-old-man. She interrupted him napping, and the unconscious "keep me alive" Allomantic burning of an atiummind results in him being at a near maximum for his natural physical age, requiring him to wake up and tap harder to get down to a form in his early twenties.

I much prefer this explanation.  If there were Unconscious tapping involved, I could easily see it doing the absolute minimum to keep the person alive, as opposed to real, skill-based throttling of the ability.  

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On 27. 8. 2019 at 9:18 PM, robardin said:

As the Coppermind entry notes, we can infer he has a spike for F-atium, as he's documented by WoB to have survived into Era 2 (and will last for a good while further) by Compounding atium the way TLR had done. Why Ruin saw fit to use up one of a small number of Feruchemists available to spike out attributes from to give Marsh a spike for F-atium is unknown; the most obvious one being, he wanted to continue to use Marsh around the Cosmere after destroying Scadrial, and thus wanted to ensure his longevity.

Does that mean that Marsh has some unknown way to gather more Atium/has it in stock? You still have to burn Atium, so how does that work? Do you have to take your metalmind off, eat it, then burn it? Atium is quickly broken by stomach acids, so for how long can you burn metalmind before it is unusable?

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3 hours ago, Urtan said:

Does that mean that Marsh has some unknown way to gather more Atium/has it in stock? You still have to burn Atium, so how does that work? Do you have to take your metalmind off, eat it, then burn it? Atium is quickly broken by stomach acids, so for how long can you burn metalmind before it is unusable?

Yup, per WOB he has a bag of Atium beads (same one that KanPaar attempted to sell) and is confirmed to be compounding it to stay alive.  Also, "A small bead used right can reverse age someone back to their childhood. WOB"

His supply will run out eventually, and even if he had an infinite supply that sort of immortality has an absolute limit.  Per WOB, the longer past your lifetime you are the more atium it takes to keep you alive, so eventually it would stop being effective.  But Scadrial legitimately might make it to the stars first.  

 

Quote

 

Kirrin

Marsh? The book doesn't mention him after he fights with Elend.

Brandon Sanderson

Marsh is alive. I changed this from when I talked to [Peter]. I realized some things about his use of Allomancy that would allow him to survive. Actually, he is immortal. He can pull off the same Allomancy/Feruchemy trick that the Lord Ruler did. (And he knows it too, since he was there when Sazed explained how it was done in Book One.) He's actually the only living person who actually knows this trick for certain. (Though there's a chance that Spook, Ham and Breeze heard about it from Vin and the others.) So yes, if there were another series, Marsh would make an appearance.

Douglas

I thought that trick required atium and involved burning the atium. With all the atium gone and Sazed not making any more, it would therefore not be possible even for a full mistborn/feruchemist. Am I wrong, is Sazed providing atium specifically for Marsh to allow a friend and valuable servant to survive, or what?

Brandon Sanderson

Marsh has the bag of atium that KanPaar sent to be sold, as well as several nuggets in his stomach. So, I guess 'immortal' is the wrong phrase. He's got the only remaining atium in the world and can keep himself around for a long, long while—but he WILL eventually run out. Unless Sazed does something.

Footnote: Brandon had earlier told Peter that in his mind, Marsh was dead having been "burned out by the sun"
Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide (Oct. 15, 2008)

 

 
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7 hours ago, Quantus said:

Yup, per WOB he has a bag of Atium beads (same one that KanPaar attempted to sell) and is confirmed to be compounding it to stay alive.  Also, "A small bead used right can reverse age someone back to their childhood. WOB"

His supply will run out eventually, and even if he had an infinite supply that sort of immortality has an absolute limit.  Per WOB, the longer past your lifetime you are the more atium it takes to keep you alive, so eventually it would stop being effective.  But Scadrial legitimately might make it to the stars first.  

 

 

Thanks for explanation. 

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