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XaviGzz

Souls of people killed by Nightblood or shardblade

Question

Hi all,

I was thinking about how when someone dies in the cosmere, their souls passes to the CR and from there to the beyond.

Does this mechanic apply to people who die by a shardblade? If I understand correctly shardblades sever souls, so, is this soul able to go to the CR and the beyond?

Additionally, Nightblood functions differently, it (he?) consumes and destroys the investiture of one handling him unsheathed, and eventually consumes the life force (soul?) of the person and kills him.  Is this soul also able to pass to the beyond?

Thanks!

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There's in-world debate on the matter.

Quote

Questioner

So, if Nightblood, unsheathed, killed someone, would their soul still go to the Beyond?

Brandon Sanderson

So, that's gonna be a matter of-- There's gonna be disagreement in the cosmere about that. Nobody has been able to actively test it, because there are certain things you can see, but there are people who are actively discussing this concept.

Questioner

So, no one knows for sure?

Brandon Sanderson

Nobody knows for sure. And I'll just leave it at that. It's an astute question that even Vasher has-- Vasher has his thoughts, but he does not have a definitive answer, and others disagree with him.

I personally believe they all still go to the beyond, but it doesn't seem like we have a definitive answer.

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Well we do know at least that fused killed by nightblood don't come back/reincarnate. We have a WoB on that. I will add it momentarily. 

 

edit: here is the WoB

 

Questioner

My question is not really a question, it's more of a theory. How Odium keeps the Fused around is more if he has them tied to his essence, so it's like he's essentially fishing them out of the Spiritual Realm and since their minds are left behind in the Cognitive Realm and their minds are *inaudible* damaged, because their spirits are separated and it just pulls them back.

I'm 100% convinced Nightblood did kill the thunderclast, because Nightblood consumes all investiture, that's something I asked you back at Barnes and Noble a couple years ago, during Christmas and you said your soul is investiture. So my thought is, that thunderclast isn't coming back any time soon.

Brandon Sanderson

You are correct on that one.

Questioner

When I saw that, my thought was, "Yep, It's dead." Other people were like, "I don't know, will it come back?" Nope.

Brandon Sanderson

I'll tell you this. They have not run into something like this before, and there will be ramifications of what happened there.

Questioner

That is fun to know.

Brandon Sanderson

If you are used to death having no consequence, and suddenly your friend vanishes forever...

Questioner

Yeah I, know I already thought of that. They're going to fight over Nightblood.

Brandon Sanderson

Mmm.

Idaho Falls signing (July 21, 2018) Edited by Pathfinder
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8 hours ago, XaviGzz said:

Does this mechanic apply to people who die by a shardblade? If I understand correctly shardblades sever souls, so, is this soul able to go to the CR and the beyond?

The Fused reincarnate even if they're killed with Shardblades so while their souls are damaged, they're certainly intact enough. The only reason they don't go Beyond after death is because they're Cognitive Shadows. Nightblood is another question entirely and that's one for the philosophers and theologians of the Cosmere to debate. Given that it directly relates to the nature of the Beyond which Brandon has stated he's never going to provide a definitive answer for, the question of what happens to the soul of someone killed by Nightblood is likely to also remain unanswered.

Edited by Weltall
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Thanks for the replies! I didn't know there was a WoB about this, and hopefully we can get an answer eventually about what happens to people killed by unsheathed Nightblood.

With the Fused I think we know that shardblades don't destroy the souls, as opposed to what we have seen happens in Silence with the cognitive shadows there. And we do know weapons exist that can destroy cognitive shadows as Moash very gladly showed us.

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I have a feeling someone killed by nightblood would likely be either stuck in the CR or immediately go to the beyond. I feel like they could have become cognitive shadows but there seems to be evidence countering this point in Warbreaker itself, with there being deaths by nightblood and no discernable shadows wandering around on the planet. However the way that nightblood sucks at a persons investiture or soul seems extremely similar to the effects of "withering" that the shades on Threnody inflict. Which is why I feel it would make sense for them to become cognitive shadows. Maybe the weilder would become one if they let nightblood completely consume them. Im not certain if this point has yet been touched upon in any of the books or blogs by Sanderson himself. 

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The difference as I see it is that Shardblades Cut the Spiritual aspect, damaging it enough to kill the person, but the Investiture that makes up the Spiritweb is otherwise left Alone.  Nightblood, by contrast, directly Absorbs the Investiture of what it attacks (or it's wielder if nothing else is available), so after the damage is done the pieces are then trapped.  So in the case of the fused the shadow can be reconstituted by the Everstorm because the peices are availible, but those killed by Nightblood are then trapped at least as well as a Perfect Gem would.  

That still leaves the separate and perpetually unanswered Question of what, if any, distinction there is between the Spiritweb and the Soul that goes Beyond (if "Beyond" even exists). 

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1 hour ago, Quantus said:

Nightblood, by contrast, directly Absorbs the Investiture of what it attacks (or it's wielder if nothing else is available), so after the damage is done the pieces are then trapped.  So in the case of the fused the shadow can be reconstituted by the Everstorm because the peices are availible, but those killed by Nightblood are then trapped at least as well as a Perfect Gem would. 

You stating it in this way makes me wonder if Nightblood could have some of the qualities of a Fabrial Fused in the Oathbringer era...  Gonna need a lot of Stormlight to test that without getting absorbed, however.

Edit: Fabrials don't trap spren, they trap stormlight.  C'mon, StarrFall... I doubt any abilities would be passed on to Nightblood's bearer, so I suppose Nightblood would have to find out for itself if this was the case.

Edited by StarrFall
Coffee BEFORE posting recommended
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1 hour ago, StarrFall said:

You stating it in this way makes me wonder if Nightblood could have some of the qualities of a Fabrial Fused in the Oathbringer era...  Gonna need a lot of Stormlight to test that without getting absorbed, however.

Edit: Fabrials don't trap spren, they trap stormlight.  C'mon, StarrFall... I doubt any abilities would be passed on to Nightblood's bearer, so I suppose Nightblood would have to find out for itself if this was the case.

Have you finished Oathbringer yet?

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@Quantus I have read everything except White Sands II, but I read Oathbringer right after it was released and have been insanely busy since (became a parent) and had been reading other stuff in the interim so I’m rusty on the details. Working through a Cosmere reread currently since I finally convinced a good friend to join the fun, & he’s on Oathbringer as of yesterday, hence my visit here to brush up :D

I was thinking along the lines of “Szeth taking out a fused w Nightblood and NB potentially picking up an Odium-based surge by virtue of absorbing the trapped spren”, assuming that the spren must be absorbed if the Fused cant return after being taken out by NB.

Lot of holes to poke in that though: spren are cognitive constructs and not pure investiture (I don't think), Nightblood’s guiding words of “destroy evil” don’t play well with anything let alone Odium’s intent, etc.

 

Edit: something tells me I need to brush up on fabrials as I’m now second-guessing whether a fabrial gem can hold spren as a the Fused’s gemheart can... I’m positive I’m forgetting some very cool details here. 

Edited by StarrFall
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