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WestTea

Dropping Nightblood

Question

Hello, I noticed that in warbreaker when Vasher uses nightblood he is able to discard Nightblood before all of his investiture is consumed by just throwing him away. However, in Oathbringer when Szeth uses Nightblood he is not able to drop him without the sheath and nearly dies from having all of his investiture drained (Lift has to use healing on him iirc).

So my question is why can Vasher drop Nightblood but Szeth cannot? I have a few theories and am curious what other poeple think:

  1. Is this a sign of Nightblood growing stronger from having consumed more investiture? If so will he become harder and harder to resist/sheath in the future?
  2. Was Vasher able to drop him because he understands how Nightblood works and has a better cognitive understanding of how the investiture is being used
  3. Is there an inherent difference in using breaths to fuel Nightblood compared to using Stormlight?

My personal opinion is that it is a combination of 2 and 3 where Vasher is able to separate the breaths/investiture he is holding from himself and view them as individual pieces that Nightblood is consuming and then discard the investiture as a separate entity whereas Szeth views the stormlight as a single entity (not a combination of many parts) as well as the stormlight becoming a part of himself, so once Nightblood started feasting on the investiture he had a hold on all of Szeth.

Thoughts anyone?

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8 answers to this question

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I think your second option is closer than the others. Vasher knows how to partition Investiture, as shown with him suppressing his Divine Breath and his partial-bestowing of Breath, and it's not a stretch to think that he could sacrifice a portion of his Investiture, partition that off, then when Nightblood is almost done consuming it, chuck the blade before it starts looking for more to eat. I think part of it also is Vasher's experience with Nightblood and his superior willpower compared to Szeth. Vasher's been there since the beginning, has carried the thing for who knows how long, and has enough willpower to put any Green Lantern to shame. Szeth is used to taking orders, not all there upstairs (which means Nightblood probably could dig its hooks in further), and still conflicted about just about everything.

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the difference between breath and stormligth might be relevant too.  Breath is a lot stickier - stormlight will fade from a person over time, while breath generally wont.  I also go tthe impression that Vasher's fight was shorter, though I could be wrong about that, but if so it could simply be that if he'd been fighting longer it would have been harder.

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I wonder if Szeth's inability to release Nightblood was because some part of him still views himself as "evil" or deserving of oblivion for all the murders he committed while Truthless.

But then the "adhesion" effect extended to Lift as well when she started aiding Szeth in giving Investiture to Nightblood, and both were released when Dalinar overcharged all the gems on the entire battlefield with his I AM UNITY mini-Ascension. So maybe it's also a factor as to how "hungry" Nightblood is, however that mechanism works.

I thought it was interesting that Szeth was able to scoop up the sheath from off the ground and then slam Nightblood into it as he walked up to stand at Dalinar's side after that. Not just because it seemed like Nightblood had actually been temporarily sated, but because the last we saw, a Fused version of an Edgedancer (using the Surge of Abrasion to be slick, anyway) had got around behind him, removed the sheath from his back, used it to block Nightblood when he swung it at him/her in a way that suggested foreknowledge, and then ran off with it as other opponents swarmed at Szeth to keep him busy. Why would that Fused then drop the sheath?

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1 hour ago, robardin said:

Why would that Fused then drop the sheath?

The Fused panicked from the Unity thing. That's probably when it got dropped.

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17 minutes ago, Invocation said:

The Fused panicked from the Unity thing. That's probably when it got dropped.

No, they gave it to Amaram, who threw it down in front of Odium. Then Odium noped out of there, so Szeth was able to recover it.

Quote

Stone crunched as a figure in glittering Shardplate walked up to them, carrying a Shardblade in one hand and—strangely—an empty sheath in the other. The human had his faceplate up, exposing red eyes. He tossed the silvery sheath to the ground. “I was told to deliver that to you.”

“Well done, Meridas,” Odium said. “Abaray, could you provide this human with an appropriate housing for Yelig-nar?”

 

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31 minutes ago, RShara said:

No, they gave it to Amaram, who threw it down in front of Odium. Then Odium noped out of there, so Szeth was able to recover it.

Ah, yes, that's what happened. Lucky break for Szeth, I guess. And maybe everyboday. What happens with a permanently unsheathed Nightblood lying around? Seems like a Bad Idea that maybe neither side wants.

What would happen if a Fused were to pick it up?

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2 hours ago, RShara said:

No, they gave it to Amaram, who threw it down in front of Odium. Then Odium noped out of there, so Szeth was able to recover it.

Ah, right, my bad. 

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Ok, so the larkins on Roshar tell us that Void light can be consumed in a similar way to Stormlight, but the real problem comes from what Nightblood perceives as Evil. Basically, Nightblood would likely make the Fused commit suicide as a result of being Evil. The only way around this is to have enough Investiture to rewrite the initial command to "Destroy Evil"

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