Oltux72

Is there an interstellar black market for Breaths?

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Riino asked Kaladin at which Heightening he was. Immediately. Why?

  • Does Kaladin look like a member of a Nalthian ethnicity? We have seen only a small part of the planet.
  • Are the majority of people in Shadesmar from Nalthis?
  • Is having Breaths simply the only way to be Invested without the reason being obvious, like carrying an Aviar?
  • Or is there a trade with Breaths going on and world hoppers are often at a higher Heightening?

I would go for the last explanation, just because we have to ask ourselves, why people would not buy Breath. It is very useful even if you have no idea how to Awaken. You still get life span and life sense. In addition, other magics are not exportable readily. A metal mind is useless to anybody not a Feruchemist. Seons cannot easily leave Sel. Aviars are conspicious.

Also they are extremely easy to transport. They literally weigh nothing and take up no room. Do we have any instances of people showing something like a life sense?

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Breaths are the easiest investiture to get.

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25 minutes ago, Frustration said:

Breaths are the easiest investiture to get.

Yeah, Breath is described as being openly traded in Hallendren in Warbreaker, and it's been mentioned in WoBs that Nalthis is easy to get to and commonly visited among worldhoppers, to the extent that they even "have customs that you can go through". (More accurately, I assume, Brandon means have to go through - nobody eagerly goes through customs, looking forward to having their stuff rifled through and then to have taxes potentially assessed, or contraband seized!)

Besides, if Riino looked "Shin" to Kaladin, then surely he looked equally "Alethi" to Riino, so his being in the CR and also being Invested enough to make the globe work would only come from him either having visited Nalthis and making a purchase, or being one of the first Radiants to enter Shadesmar in hundreds of years.

He eventually thinks of option #2 ("Merciful Domi... A Surgebinder?") but clearly option #1 seemed much more likely to him.

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Plenty of worldhopers of acquired breath and a great many Nalthian natives do worldhop.  Famously Nalthis is the only shardworld with actual customs at their perpendicularity.  Many individuals on Roshar have acquired breath including some members of the ghoostbloods, Nalthian ex patriots like Vasher and Azure, and possibly even King Gavilar himself.

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Just now, Karger said:

Plenty of worldhopers of acquired breath and a great many Nalthian natives do worldhop.  Famously Nalthis is the only shardworld with actual customs at their perpendicularity.  Many individuals on Roshar have acquired breath including some members of the ghoostbloods, Nalthian ex patriots like Vasher and Azure, and possibly even King Gavilar himself.

Whoa... Really? (How's that?)

Breath doesn't even need to be personally acquired on Nalthis, too. Anyone with Breath can give it to anyone else, anywhere, any time.

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Just now, robardin said:

Whoa... Really? (How's that?)

Certain actions he takes during the released RoW prologue indicate he has some kind of life sense.  Additionally many people in world remark on his "aura of majesty" which lead some sharders to theorize that he is getting some supernatural help.

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Posted (edited)

He asked which heightening because Nalthis is like the easiest planet  to get to and the easiest magic system to access. 
on top of that. Riino wasnt aware that spren bonds were happening again and he knew kaladin was invested so he just assumed kaladin had breath

Edited by Eternal Khol
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Posted (edited)

14 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

Riino asked Kaladin at which Heightening he was. Immediately. Why?

  • Does Kaladin look like a member of a Nalthian ethnicity? We have seen only a small part of the planet.

That's true. I was going to say Scadrial is relatively homogeneous before remembering that they got scoured twice. Kaladin looks quite Alethi, I think, which might resemble some other ethnicities in the Cosmere but the way it's framed narratively and how Brandon keeps saying to look out for "Shin eyes", I think we won't see them or they won't be that prominent.

But as many have said, Worldhoppers probably often have Breath, so it might not be an ethnicity thing.

14 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

Riino asked Kaladin at which Heightening he was. Immediately. Why?

  • Are the majority of people in Shadesmar from Nalthis?

In Shadesmar in particular, they very well could be. Rosharan subastral is neighbours with Scadrial, who don't have an in-built Cognitive travel method in their Investiture systems & Perpendicularities in relatively difficult to access places for people in-world during the Final Empire, and Sel, whose Cognitive Realm has an Investiture plasma storm hurtling about. We don't know much about Nalthian subastral but it could have a comparatively freer flow of people. It apparently has a customs office in its subastral.

14 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

Riino asked Kaladin at which Heightening he was. Immediately. Why?

  • Is having Breaths simply the only way to be Invested without the reason being obvious, like carrying an Aviar?

Having Breaths is probably just more common among Worldhoppers. It's easy to get access to and as you note:

14 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

It is very useful even if you have no idea how to Awaken. You still get life span and life sense. In addition, other magics are not exportable readily. A metal mind is useless to anybody not a Feruchemist. Seons cannot easily leave Sel. Aviars are conspicious.

Also they are extremely easy to transport. They literally weigh nothing and take up no room.

 

14 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

Riino asked Kaladin at which Heightening he was. Immediately. Why?

  • Or is there a trade with Breaths going on and world hoppers are often at a higher Heightening?
Quote

Questioner

We started out in the earlier books knowing that there's this Hoid guy, he's a worldhopper. Hey, worldhoppers exist. And then we've kind of been given more and more. In Secret History it said you'd be surprised about the economy you've upended by destroying the perpedicularity. what amount of people are travelling between worlds? Hundreds? Thousands? Billions?

Brandon Sanderson

...Thousands.

Questioner

Is it like vacation? Or is it like...

Brandon Sanderson

Well, I wouldn't call it--

Questioner

Is it the frontier? Or is it from where you could go?

Brandon Sanderson

It depends on the roadway. Let's say you look at frontier era America. How hard was it to get to England? It was really far away, but it was actually relatively safe and common to do this. How difficult was it to get to Boise, Idaho? That's harder, but you know how to do it. How easy was it to get to, let's say, the Hawaiian Islands? You're starting to get into like, the question comes here, certain pathways are more traveled. There are going to be caravans, there are going to be guides. There are going to be safe travels between certain places that are done commonly enough that if you are in the know and are in the right place you can be like "I wanna buy passage here." And you go there, and you can have a reasonable expectation that you're going to make it to where you're going. 

Other places, you say, "I wanna go here", and they're like, "Yeah, I've known someone who tried that and they never came back. I'm not taking you." So, where you're going, where you're trafficking, Khriss gives you some indications of which ones are easy to get to and which ones are commonly visited. I would recommend that if you want to go on vacation in the cosmere, like, "I want to go somewhere different," go to Nalthis. Go to Nalthis. Nalthis is great to go to, right? They even have customs that you can go through. You can like, arrive, and things like this. Don't go to Sel. Sel is not good to go to. Sel is really dangerous to go to. There's a dead Shard--two of them--in the Cognitive Realm that will destroy you. Other places, Scadrial, used to be a lot easier to get to. Roshar, depends on which era you're talking about. Sometimes it's pretty easy to go to. Those nice Horneaters will treat you like a god and feed you food. However, right now, it might not be a good time to try to visit Roshar.

JordanCon 2018 (April 21, 2018)

Quote

yulerule

So if you were in the cosmere, and you know how it works, or how it all should work. Would you hack it like all ridiculously and like what would you-- Do you have a plan of action.

Brandon Sanderson

Oh yeah I would. I would have two choices. I would go hide on the planet I know is safe, and ride it all out. I have those two options.

yulerule

What was the second option?

Brandon Sanderson

Well the second option is try to take over, right? 'Cause I know all the secrets. I don't know which one I would do.

yulerule

Would you be able to hack it all?

Brandon Sanderson

Well, would I be able to? It depends on where I am in the cosmere, and how easy it is to get a hold of some Investiture.

yulerule

But once you get some initial Investiture then you go out.

Brandon Sanderson

Then things start rolling. As soon as you can get one of the easy ones, it's easy to use, transfer. 

Argent

Like Breath.

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah like Breath, or uh...

yulerule

Mistborn?

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah, well Mistborn's harder, but you know Breath is the easiest I've approached so far. Unless you kind distill it, then you've got the... Anyway. We won't go there. You saw that in Secret History

Argent

Oh, oh that.

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah. When you strip off all kinds of identity and stuff.

Argent

Connection Juice...not Connection Juice.

Brandon Sanderson

Connection Juice?

Argent

Yeah, that's what we're calling it.

Brandon Sanderson

Okay, okay I suppose.

JordanCon 2018 (April 20, 2018)

14 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

Riino asked Kaladin at which Heightening he was. Immediately. Why?

The lack of reaction was startling in a way. I didn't expect Shadesmar to be that well-travelled by humans. Having spren to trade with probably plays a big part.

If Riino did recognize Kaladin's ethnicity as Alethi Rosharan, which should be his first guess, why was his reaction so cavalier?

I wonder if widespread knowledge of the existence of another realm means more people discover how to access it on Roshar. But how? With the Perpendicularities being difficult to get to, Surgebinding not being used in a while, Soulcasters not quite allowing exploration of Shadesmar.

But he did ask him if he had Breath, which is one of the easiest Investiture to get. There are several Worldhopper and Cosmere aware secret societies in Roshar. They are actively recruiting. I wonder... 

14 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

Do we have any instances of people showing something like a life sense?

Zahel and Mraize 

Edited by R J
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9 hours ago, Karger said:

Certain actions he takes during the released RoW prologue indicate he has some kind of life sense.

When he noticed Venli peeking in?

8 hours ago, Eternal Khol said:

He asked which heightening because Nalthis is like the easiest planet  to get to and the easiest magic system to access. 
on top of that. Riino wasnt aware that spren bonds were happening again and he knew kaladin was invested so he just assumed kaladin had breath

OK, we can go with that, but given the location, why did he not ask whether Kaladin is from Ashyn? Does this confirm that Ashyn no longer has access to the CR?

3 hours ago, R J said:

But as many have said, Worldhoppers probably often have Breath, so it might not be an ethnicity thing.

Do we need to make a distinction between worldhoppers and permanent residents of the CR?

Whom did Riino expect?

3 hours ago, R J said:

We don't know much about Nalthian subastral but it could have a comparatively freer flow of people. It apparently has a customs office in its subastral.

The problem is that the numbers do not match. We have seen as many Scadrian worldhoppers as Nalthians. The majority, even if we count the whole Ire as one, were in fact Selish. Chance?

3 hours ago, R J said:

Having Breaths is probably just more common among Worldhoppers. It's easy to get access to and as you note:

That is a bit odd, as for example Ashyn magics should be even reproducible in a cell culture or incubator.

3 hours ago, R J said:

 

The lack of reaction was startling in a way. I didn't expect Shadesmar to be that well-travelled by humans. Having spren to trade with probably plays a big part.

I guess he was expecting customers. Though that makes me wonder how he explained Kaladin to have arrived without a ship coming in.

3 hours ago, R J said:

If Riino did recognize Kaladin's ethnicity as Alethi Rosharan, which should be his first guess, why was his reaction so cavalier?

Why should it be his first guess? He is a long way from the perpendicularity. Anybody coming from the perpendicularity would arrive by ship. The oath gates have been blocked for centuries.

3 hours ago, R J said:

I wonder if widespread knowledge of the existence of another realm means more people discover how to access it on Roshar. But how? With the Perpendicularities being difficult to get to, Surgebinding not being used in a while, Soulcasters not quite allowing exploration of Shadesmar.

The Horneaters are unlikely to react well to any outsider taking a swim in ther holy pools.

 

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4 minutes ago, Oltux72 said:

Do we need to make a distinction between worldhoppers and permanent residents of the CR?

I don't think so, citizens of Silverlight do often Worldhop. Unless the Cognitive residents are like the spren or a Cognitive Shadow, bound to a Shardworld, there isn't much of a distinction.

5 minutes ago, Oltux72 said:

why did he not ask whether Kaladin is from Ashyn? Does this confirm that Ashyn no longer has access to the CR?

That is a bit odd, as for example Ashyn magics should be even reproducible in a cell culture or incubator.

I guess he was expecting customers. Though that makes me wonder how he explained Kaladin to have arrived without a ship coming in.

Why should it be his first guess? He is a long way from the perpendicularity. Anybody coming from the perpendicularity would arrive by ship. The oath gates have been blocked for centuries.

Ashyn magics we don't really know enough about to tell. But being sick isn't really an ideal way to have Investiture, especially when the current extract suggests worse sicknesses give more powerful abilities.

Since there aren't any Shards on Ashyn currently, it's quite likely that they no longer have a Perpendicularity.

I think Rosharans would look... not quite distinct from Ashynites but at least off-puttingly different enough. It's quite possible that not everyone would be able to tell the difference.

The Heralds' physical descriptions are off-Alethi, so either the Shin were a distinct ethnic group or they've adapted. Or it's the Rosharans who've adapted and the Heralds' appearance is a bit affected by other things.

That Kaladin might be native should be his first guess is simply from location + appearance.

We, the readers are looking at these things with a magnifying glass. Most characters in the book probably aren't.

Quote

The problem is that the numbers do not match. We have seen as many Scadrian worldhoppers as Nalthians. The majority, even if we count the whole Ire as one, were in fact Selish. Chance?

We haven't really seen all worldhoppers, only plot relevant ones

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2 hours ago, R J said:

I don't think so, citizens of Silverlight do often Worldhop. Unless the Cognitive residents are like the spren or a Cognitive Shadow, bound to a Shardworld, there isn't much of a distinction.

There seem to be very few casual worldhoppers. They seem to be professional worldhoppers. Very few of them hop rarely or once. It always looks like a way of life. We see nobody who is clearly rooted in a culture and just travels through the CR for trade or other purposes. Worldhoppers, with the exception of Azure, look like a distinct ethnicity. Perhaps aided by their extreme life span.
Even Felt is the last subject of the Final Empire. Mraize is a Ghostblood first and foremost. Thaylenah is coincidental to him.

2 hours ago, R J said:

That Kaladin might be native should be his first guess is simply from location + appearance.

What allows us to assume he ever saw an Alethi in person? He knew that Surgebinding was extinct but might restart. He treated it as an undesirable possibility. And an Alethi coming to a fortune teller as a customer? That is rather unlikely.

 

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9 minutes ago, Oltux72 said:

There seem to be very few casual worldhoppers. They seem to be professional worldhoppers. Very few of them hop rarely or once. It always looks like a way of life. We see nobody who is clearly rooted in a culture and just travels through the CR for trade or other purposes. Worldhoppers, with the exception of Azure, look like a distinct ethnicity. Perhaps aided by their extreme life span.
Even Felt is the last subject of the Final Empire. Mraize is a Ghostblood first and foremost. Thaylenah is coincidental to him.

Yeah, we've only seen professional worldhoppers in-book because they would be more plot relevant.

Look at the Silverlight scholars Khriss, Nazh and Guyn, they make a living out of it, indicating that the people of Silverlight do visit and study other Shardworlds. This is corroborated by how Brandon often talks about Worldhopping, like in the WoB I gave in my first response regarding Nalthian customs office. Also check out the WoBs regarding Felt (interplanetary trade through the Pits, this is also mentioned by Hoid in Secret History)

Not every Worldhopper is a part of the big organizations like the Ire, the 17th Shard or the Ghostbloods. Most are interested in tourism and trade between Shardworlds. 

9 minutes ago, Oltux72 said:

What allows us to assume he ever saw an Alethi in person? He knew that Surgebinding was extinct but might restart. He treated it as an undesirable possibility. And an Alethi coming to a fortune teller as a customer? That is rather unlikely.

He lives in the Rosharan subastral corresponding to Alethkar. He does know enough of the situation on Roshar to recognize Surgebinding. I'd say he's Physically been there too and he probably has the means to observe things from the Cognitive if need be. He also seemed to be aware of the stigma surrounding fortune telling. He treated the return as such because of the conflict it indicated as being near, which is undesirable for his business.

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I'm sure there's trade going on but I can't think of any reason it would be a blackmarket. On Nalthis its completely legal and that's the only place it would regulated.

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13 minutes ago, Elsecaller_17.5 said:

I'm sure there's trade going on but I can't think of any reason it would be a blackmarket.

Announcing that you are a space alien who sells a substance that can make rich people immortal is not good for business. At the very least you would have people, who would in turn turn into competitors, investigate the source of your goods.

13 minutes ago, Elsecaller_17.5 said:

On Nalthis its completely legal and that's the only place it would regulated.

It would be taxed for sure. Everywhere. The ultimate luxury good.

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Posted (edited)

19 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

When he noticed Venli peeking in?

Navani but yes.

19 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

OK, we can go with that, but given the location, why did he not ask whether Kaladin is from Ashyn? Does this confirm that Ashyn no longer has access to the CR?

Maybe not it might just be more difficult.  Additionally Ashyn is from a lower level investiture system as shards are not in residence their.

19 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

Do we need to make a distinction between worldhoppers and permanent residents of the CR?

I don't think many residents are really permanent other then spren and any people who reside in the CR will be cosmere aware. 

19 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

The problem is that the numbers do not match. We have seen as many Scadrian worldhoppers as Nalthians. The majority, even if we count the whole Ire as one, were in fact Selish. Chance?

We have not seen a statistically significant number of worldhoppers nor do we know with 100% veracity who is and is not one.

19 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

That is a bit odd, as for example Ashyn magics should be even reproducible in a cell culture or incubator.

We don't know if that will work.

19 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

I guess he was expecting customers. Though that makes me wonder how he explained Kaladin to have arrived without a ship coming in.

I suppose he gets surprise visits once in a while.

10 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

Announcing that you are a space alien who sells a substance that can make rich people immortal is not good for business. At the very least you would have people, who would in turn turn into competitors, investigate the source of your goods.

Quite market might be better or grey market.

Edited by Karger
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On 22.5.2020 at 10:20 PM, Oltux72 said:

Does Kaladin look like a member of a Nalthian ethnicity?

 

I really doubt it because Rosharans are, among other things, significantly taller than cosmere-average because of their lighter gravity. And Alethi are the tallest among them, so they would look like veritable giants to people from the other worlds, or at least like professional basketball players do to us. It is no coincidence that most suspected worldhoppers are described as noticeably short by the PoV characters. Felt only reaches Dalinar's chest, for instance, and both Adolin and Kaladin are taller than Dalinar. Vasher and Vivenna don't look short to the Alethi, but both of them can change their body shape and size within limits - I doubt that either had proper Alethi eye-shape back in Warbreaker either and Vivenna's eyes certainly weren't orange! I suspect that Hoid can do something similar, because in none of his appearances on several planets is his size noted as remarkable in either direction.

As has already been mentioned, Breaths were just the easiest investiture for a Rosharan to get, until the return of surgebindings. Also, it seems like Riino was getting a steady enough traffic of clients to survive in his lighthouse, so Rosharans worldhopping may not have been as rare as one would assume. Either the Horneaters are accomodating, or there is another way to get into CR, catching Honor's Perpendicularity somehow - probably more feasible in the west, where storms are not so deadly, though.

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