ChaseBakes

Nightblood Anti-Investiture

38 posts in this topic

On 11/29/2020 at 2:05 PM, ChaseBakes said:

So we saw a lot of Nightblood in RoW and I wanted to share a theory.  So I believe that Nightblood uses the anti-Investiture we learned about (e.g. anti-Voidlight, anti-Stormlight) in order to destroy.  So think about it: Raboniel told Navani about how anti-Voidlight would react with Odium's vessel to kill him like what was done to Tanavast.  Coincidently, Rayse, Odium's Vessel, a being that should be too powerful to be killed by a human creation, was then killed later by Nightblood.  Furthermore, we see Nightblood damaging Ishar's Honorblade; this was previously thought to be impossible.  The only theory I can come up with is it came into contact with anti-Investiture.  Now, some might argue that Nightblood wasn't damaged in either process as has been seen in the case of Investiture reacting with its opposite.  Remember that Shadblades and Honorblades are pieces of power manifested in the Physical Realm.  Nightblood, however, was once an ordinary sword infused with massive amounts of Investiture and given a Command with Intent.  It then uses external Investiture to fuel its power.  My theory is that, somehow, the Investiture that Nightblood absorbs from its bearer becomes inverted, as we saw Navani do in her experiments.  This anti-Investiture is then what causes instant antihalation upon contact with its opposite.  We saw anti-Stormlight used to kill Phendorana.  I believe that would still happen if she had been manifested as a Blade.   Possibly in the form of, say, breaking or chipping it?  I also believe that is how Nightblood kills so... uniquely.  The descriptions of people being instantly vaporized sound similar to what happened to Phendorana as well as Raboniel's and her daughter's souls.

So definitely not cannon and I am sure my theory has some holes, but I honestly believe this has merit.  I would love to here your thoughts as I believe this will have massive implications for the future!

Brandon says that Nightblood did not begin as the most invested entity (except for shards), but became that powerful overtime. Further, he is described as consuming investure, not destroying it (which is how he became so powerful). If he was or contained a form of anti-investiture, he would destroy normal investiture, not consume it. He would actually lose power, as anti and normal investiture annihilate each other. So I doubt he has anti-investiture

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I don't think Nightblood is anti-investiture - it's just end-negative investiture which is pretty rare in the Cosmere, but also much more effective as a weapon than anti-investiture. 

Nightblood (like hemalurgy) is of Ruin and interacts with any positive or even end-neutral manifestation of investiture by consuming a portion of it for an effect (powering the sword, powering a single ability) that diminishes over time (black mist leaking, slow expiry of invested spikes), and destroying/dispersing the rest. It just seems to be a matter of scale. And it's pretty versatile as it's been so far confirmed that investiture from Autonomy, Cultivation, Devotion, Dominion, Endowment, Honor, Odium, and at least one other can be 'Ruined'. 

This is superficially similar to the destructive properties of anti-investiture, but the principles by which this is achieved are quite different. Navani is able to produce anti-lights keyed to the intent of a specific Shard that obliterate that specific form of investiture rather than a broad parasitic kind of investiture that does give access to some powers. This means that a bearer of anti-investiture also does not gain anything at all from what they've done - no talking swords or magical spikes - and needs pretty specific targets. As an example, if you created anti-Voidlight and put it into a Raysium blade then I'm not sure it would do anything at all to the Mist on Scadrial or to the Divine Breath of a Returned. It might just be a normal knife in that situation whereas Nightblood would be damaging to both.

The only thing that makes the anti-investiture discovery significant is that there's been a deliberate effort to suppress the spread of knowledge of how to make anything like Nightblood, which is far more dangerous as a weapon than a knife that can functionally only do anything to Fused and Regals one at a time. That might change if Odium cooperates and mass produces Raysium, but yeah, not that similar when you dig into it.

 

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I do not believe this to be true because nightblood acts more like a battery than anything else. In the coppermind it says on the topic of anti investiture two things one is that the only known anti investiture is anti stormlight and anti voidlight, my second point is that the coppermind also says that anti investiture reacting with investiture would destroy both. Now I can see where you're coming from I used to theorize about this but nightblood acts more like a battery and when it gains enough investiture it is sated and will use that energy to destroy evil. I think it becomes hungry when outside because it no longer has as much investiture supporting it's consciousness which is necessary for it to function and destroy evil. 

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Yeah I think Nightblood is more like a Larkin or Leecher combined with a super-powered Shardblade - it has the other-Realm cut/destroy effect of a Shardblade and it eats/leeches Investiture. But I think that Investiture is eaten (partly consumed into Nightblood partly expelled as black smoke) not turned into energy by an Investiture/anti-Investiture reaction.

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In relation to the last message, and the fact that we now have confirmation that what allows a Shardblade to cut through things is that it transforms a small amount of matter into Investiture, maybe what we can assume is that it absorbs investiture. I mean, it maybe transforms even physical matter into investiture and absorbs it, not destroying it but adding it itself. Kind of like a blackhole?

So, no destruction, just transformation and absortion.

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Posted (edited)

Nightblood sucks in all Investiture around it. It has to change the Physical manifestation of Investiture (Matter) to do this. So there is a change. In that change, it defines some Intent (we don't really know which Intent: Endowment? Ruin?) This change entails "corruption" resulting in the Physical matter manifestation of Investiture with Corrupted Intent: black smoke. The leaking is due to Nightblood being made of steel and steel not being able to hold much (if any) Investiture. Over time, the steel material Nightblood is made from has probably been altered by being so stuffed full of Investiture and can now hold more, making Nightblood more powerful.

As to why Nightblood sucks in Investiture:

A material completely unable to hold Investiture or support any type of life was infused with both with the command "Destroy Evil". The only thing the steel knew before this was "I'm steel", and maybe "I'm a sword". With the infusion of Investiture (Breaths) and the force of a command, it learned three new things: How to take in Investiture, a general idea about what Destroy means, and an even more nebulous idea about what Evil is. "Destroy evil" would have been conveyed through whatever Connection was created between the steel and Shashara through the use of the Command then filtered through the lens of what the sword already knew, which was very little. Since the only active thing the new Nightblood knew how to do was to take in Investiture, it associated the sucking in of Investiture with "destroy" and probably associated "evil" with entities who have Investiture.

The amount of Breaths in Nightblood gives it enough Spiritual and Cognitive presence to develop sapience. So much Cognitive presence, in fact, that it can affect the Cognitive aspects of others. The sapient being Nightblood has learned how to use these tools overtime to destroy the original evil it was set out to destroy: namely things that have Investiture. One thing it has also learned is that it has to cooperate with its holder to avoid being locked away in its sheath for all time. It has also learned that certain individuals aren't worth cooperating with, probably using its Cognitive abilities to suss this out. It can't keep its holder alive though, since its holder is evil (has Investiture).

 

 

Edited by Leuthie
rogue comma
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Technically, we have confirmation via a WoB that the idea that Nightblood has of "Evil" is the average of what the Breaths original owners thought Evil was (the Breaths used to awaken it, not the later absorbed Breaths).

Still, if we consider that perhaps most of the Breaths used came from Idris' people living in Hallandren (perhaps sold for money, as mentioned in Warbreaker), and the fact that Idris' people consider Breaths and Awakeners as "Evil", it still more or less supports your theory of interpreting its command as "Destroy Investiture/Invested beings".

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On 7/12/2022 at 4:15 PM, DresdeMBM said:

Technically, we have confirmation via a WoB that the idea that Nightblood has of "Evil" is the average of what the Breaths original owners thought Evil was (the Breaths used to awaken it, not the later absorbed Breaths).

Wait, really? I'd like to see that... that would totally change how I saw Nightblood (I assumed part of the problem is that either Shashara herself didn't have a good enough/sufficiently well thought out definition of Evil, or didn't incorporate it well enough into the visualization of the Command, so Nightblood kind of had to make it up for himself or rely on his wielder).

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I have been searching for it, but I misremembered. That WoB doesn't exist. Still , we can assume what I said was true because that guy at the start of Warbreaker. Vahr, I think? Part of his personality was shaped by the Breaths he held. Maybe it is the same for Nightblood.

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3 hours ago, DresdeMBM said:

I have been searching for it, but I misremembered. That WoB doesn't exist. Still , we can assume what I said was true because that guy at the start of Warbreaker. Vahr, I think? Part of his personality was shaped by the Breaths he held. Maybe it is the same for Nightblood.

Here’s the WoB:

Quote

Ghero6

In Vahr's case, did collecting Breath from other rebel-minded people strengthen his determination and resolve?

Brandon Sanderson

It would have had an influence on him, but you would need the numbers of Breaths that he had for any effect to manifest. It's basically a non-issue in the current book, but it could be an issue in some of the things that will happen in the next book.

Tor.com Q&A with Brandon Sanderson (Jan. 10, 2011)

 

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And that is what happens to something that already has a mind, it can be influenced. I think that in the case of something inanimated, the influence would manifest much more strongly. I mean, it's basically a blank slate.

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On the other hand an Awakened object is very strongly defined by its Command/visualization...

I think it's plausible that the Breath sources have some effect but I think Shashara's visualization would be much more defining.

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Posted (edited)

Yes, but if we refer to other Awakened objects, we must say that Nightblood is unique, because the enormous ammount of Breaths used gave it sentience. Thus, the Breaths' influence coupled with it being capable of thinking allows it to stray from the original visualization.

Even then, do we know how Shashara visualized "Destroy Evil"? It's a very nebulous command, so maybe it allowed more wiggle room. 

Edited by DresdeMBM
Grammar
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