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atarynnosaurus

Tien and Maya - Choices

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4 hours ago, atarynnosaurus said:

Did anyone else, in the haze of brutal emotion that was chapter 108, feel an extra emotion because of the fact that Tien, like Maya, chose his fate, and the obvious parallels between those scenes/the implications behind them? 

I didn't make the connection until you mentioned it, but absolutely. I think it's no accident the honourspren think the same way too/had the same blindspot.

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7 hours ago, atarynnosaurus said:

Kaladin's fourth ideal was "I accept that there will be those I cannot protect", which was obviously a HUGE step for him, as he obviously viewed this, based on the end of Oathbringer, as letting go of the people he lost. But I think it's also about accepting that sometimes he cannot protect people because they are not his.

Yeah, I actually though his oath would be "I will accept that you cant protect people from their own choices"

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On 11/21/2020 at 4:29 AM, atarynnosaurus said:

Did anyone else, in the haze of brutal emotion that was chapter 108, feel an extra emotion because of the fact that Tien, like Maya, chose his fate, and the obvious parallels between those scenes/the implications behind them? 

The belief, all those years, that the Radiants murdered their helpless spren as unwilling casualties of the Recreance. 

Kal's belief that Tien was sacrificed, without his knowledge or consent, along with the other messenger boys, to buy some time for the trained soldiers. 

The revelation that, in both cases, the innocent victims chose their fates for their own beliefs, and made the choice to do what they felt was right. Perhaps neither was fully aware of what the consequences might be, but they went to them willingly. 

Obviously the spren's choice, and the fact that Adolin, via the power of goodness, is slowly reviving Maya, have huge overarching implications for the entire series, and put everything into a different context. However, in terms of the parallels here between that scene, and Tien's death, and what the implications are for Kal, I think it revolves around the idea of "you cannot have my sacrifice". 

Kaladin is an incredible character, don't get me wrong. He's a hero. He's saved so many lives, and tried to save so many more. He's Kaladin storming Stormblessed, he can't be anything other than fabulous. But he also has a big flaw, and a big habit of removing agency from the people that he feels he's failed in the past. He wants to protect. He wants to protect so badly. And he fears failure so much, that sometimes he can erase the choices of those he tries to protect. 

Sometimes it feels that Kaladin is a storm, and all the people he's tried to protect, Tien, various groups of slaves, his squad in Amaram's army bridge four, Elhokar, etc, are just debris picked up and carried and then dropped by him, that they have no will or agency of their own. But they all chose. Elhokar chose to go to Kholinar to try and save his city, and his family. His squad chose to follow him into battle, and to support his assault of a shardbearer. Bridge Four chose to take up spears against the parshendi at the end of TWOK and help Dalinar. They chose to become bodyguards to Dalinar and the Kholins. They chose to become squires, and then Radiants. They chose to protect, and to put themselves in harm's way to do so. The slaves Kaladin led on an escape attempt chose to go. They chose to be brave and attempt to escape their chains, rather than living within them. And Tien. Tien chose to go with the other messenger boys. He chose to stand at the front of that group of soldiers. He chose to give them light, and hope, in their final moments. He made that sacrifice willingly, so that the others would be less afraid as they died. Like the spren of the Recreance, he chose, and history, and Kaladin, have erased that sacrifice and made it their own. 

Kaladin's fourth ideal was "I accept that there will be those I cannot protect", which was obviously a HUGE step for him, as he obviously viewed this, based on the end of Oathbringer, as letting go of the people he lost. But I think it's also about accepting that sometimes he cannot protect people because they are not his. They are their own people, with their own ideals, beliefs, and courage. Sometimes you cannot protect someone because they make the choice to not be protected. They make the choice to put themselves in harm's way, as Kaladin does time and again, to protect, or give hope, or chase their own dreams. Their choice is their own. Their sacrifice is their own. And Kaladin will have to learn that the people he saves may want to do something with the lives he protected. Even if that's to give them away for a greater good. That's their sacrifice. And their choice. And Kaladin cannot have it to fuel his guilt and fears. 

I just have to add the fact that at the end of Oathbringer, the main way Dalinar fights off Odom was to keep his pain, "you can not have my pain" the same way Maya said, "you can not have my sacrifice". It could just be a coincidence but with Brandon Sanderson, I'm not so sure. I think it will be a continuous pattern we see as the group struggles to keep going.

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On 11/21/2020 at 8:29 PM, atarynnosaurus said:

Kal's belief that Tien was sacrificed, without his knowledge or consent, along with the other messenger boys, to buy some time for the trained soldiers. 

I love the new context Brandon has given to many parts of the story in this book, and this in particular is one I've loved more than others.
I always saw Tien's death as him pressed into going in front of the trained soldiers to act as a bait, similar to how Kaladin sees it, with him dying in fear. But given the new context we've gotten here, Tien stepped up and went with the other messenger boys willingly, exemplifying Radiant ideals by being there for the others, to allow them to have a little light in their final moments. I love the way this shows Tien as someone who was always there for others, which we've already seen from Kal's flashbacks to their childhood, but really shows how this links in even to his final moments, and how Kal refused to accept that others could step into harms way deliberately to protect others, much like he does himself.

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