teknopathetic

[Theory] Taln Wasn't the Herald Who Broke; It Was Chanarach

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24 minutes ago, teknopathetic said:

What has been proven wrong? 

That Shallan killing her mother started the Desolation. Ulim was already here for months and the Listeners had already assassinated Galivar when it happened so the Desolation would have started no matter what

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Posted (edited)

5 hours ago, mathiau said:

That Shallan killing her mother started the Desolation. Ulim was already here for months and the Listeners had already assassinated Galivar when it happened so the Desolation would have started no matter what

I don't think we have the same understanding of what caused this desolation. To me, the order was.

1. Odium starts pulling the Everstorm to Roshar - this takes hundreds or thousands of years. This is done so that when a Herald does break, Odium has a huge advantage this time around. 

2. Ulim manages to get smuggled out. He is knows as The One Who Escaped

3. Venli bonds Ulim

4. A herald breaks and Taln shows up at Kholinar. Now the desolation can begin but this takes some time to ramp-up. Historically, Heralds showed up before the Fused. 

5. Venli manages to get the Everstorm started.

6. Odium allows the Fused to start returning post-Everstorm so that this desolation is easier for him to win. 
 

I don't think Ulim or the Everstorm did anything to start a desolation. I think a Herald still had to break, it is just Odium was lining up a lot of pieces to make sure this desolation was the last one. 

Edited by teknopathetic
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Can someone quickly summarize this Topic with all the points in the theory’s favor

Its getting really confusing 

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Posted (edited)

On 2021-03-06 at 5:36 PM, Bejardin1250 said:

Can someone quickly summarize this Topic with all the points in the theory’s favor

Its getting really confusing 

 

Main Debates

1. Eye Colour

Shallan's Mother and Chana in artwork have different eye colours. This is the strongest argument in my opinion and isn't something I can answer without reaching into other things. 

However, Vorins are pretty specific about eye colour, and Taln is a dark eyes, but do Vorins believe he is a light-eyes? The Vorin church did change a lot to fit their ideology.

. Is it possible Chana's eyes changed colours when she used her powers/blade, but then they reverted back to a different colour like what happens to a regular darkeyes with a bonded blade that is lost? 

It is also unclear if Heralds have access to any returned-style shapeshifting. No one knows the imbued powers of a Herald, so it is up in the air.

2. Everstorms

Some think Ulim and the Everstorm caused the desolation, so there is no need for a herald to break in the first place. 

Others think a herald broke and then the Everstorm was just a non-essential but super helpful tool for Odium (fixing parshmen and preventing souls from going to Braize).
 

3. The Body and The White Carpet and the Glowing Safe

- Some think Chana's body should have ascended or teleported away if she was in fact a herald.

-Others think it is odd that no one [edit: the servants or brothers etc] noticed Shallan's mother had burned out eyes post-death. Though there was a body for a bit, it is unclear what happened after, what would happen to a herald body in general, or what the whole deal is with Shallan thinking her mother's soul in in the safe. 

- There is also some confusion about Shallan's constant mention of the white carpet with blood stains. Was the body on that? Was that after the body moved? Is that a clue the body disappeared and the white carpet remained? 

- And why does Shallan think her mother's soul was Testemant the blade? Shallan knows that isn't true? What led her to that conclusion? Didn't she unbond Testemant AFTER the death, so what was in the safe?

This is my biggest one. If Shallan believes Testement is trapped in the safe, then how did she go yell at Testamant? Something else was in that safe. Something that glowed. 
 

edit: I know testemant can be summoned,  but can she be dismissed back into the safe? And that would mean Shallan clearly knew testemant was not in the safe?  It is weird and those ideas don’t connect well enough  making this a likely spot for another secret. Shallan is crazy, but child Shallan wasn’t crazy at that point, right? She represses, but her telling is just plain wrong as we have it. There is just too much odd and noteworthy about the whole safe glow garden thing.  

Newer Edit:@serack Mentioned that the blood on the carpet set actually congruent with a shardblade wound. If Shallan killed her mother with a Shardblade, that blood could not have been Shallan's mother's since Shardblades don't cut the skin the first time.

Perhaps that blood was the paramour's or Lin Davar, but Shallan never seems too broken up about those two in this incident. Why would she constantly think about the blood on the carpet if her mother had not actually been cut? Her father's blood or the lover's blood seems pretty far down on the list.

What this implies - I am not so sure? Maybe Lin cut something out of Chana? 

4. Killing a Herald

- Some think the heralds seemed pretty confident they couldn't die to mortal humans, so how could Shallan have killed a Herlald with a shardblade?

- Others think an unexpected shardblade to the heart might be enough to kill Chana as herlalds often died during desolations. 

5. The Quote

A chapter of WoR opens with "The world ended, and it was all Shallan Davar's Fault" which then goes directly into taking about the white carpet with blood stains. This seems like strong evidence and foreshadowing imo, but maybe it meant just her world as a child (though it does say THE world and not HER world). 

6. Red Hair and Chana's Resemblance

Shallan is said to have red-hair from horneater interbreading (historically). However, Chana has red hair and looks like Shallan quite a bit. Is that a clue? 

7. The Brothers

If we accept Shallan to be a child of Chana, what of her brothers? Is there anything special about a herald child (like how Vivenna has some powers and aptitudes due to being the child of a Returned). Is Shallan unique in some way or are all the Davar children potentially special? 
 

8. Another Secret 

- Shallan has another secret and it probably has been foreshadowed. It likely has to be “better” than the other ones or risk being anticlimactic. Radiant confirms there is a secret Shallan isn’t ready to admit yet  

we have a confirmed clue that it involves a Seon box, which basically means it is about Shallan’s secret-society mother in some way or is something completely bizarre, but Shallan’s mother is very likely connected to the box seeing as she was involved in secret societies.
 

-We also have Mraize feeling foolish for not suspecting Vail was Shallan since Shallan’s family is connected to other events, which means the Davar’s were big enough that Mraize had heard of them. Yes it could be about Lin and the soul caster being not returned, but that begs the question why Lin was given one at all or why the family had a Seon on the property ten years go? It’s very odd and is being talked about so little that it must actually matter later  

Extra Evidence in Favour

WOB 1- Chanarach has been seen onscreen during TWoK and/or WoR

WOB 2 - Heralds can have children though maybe not in the usual way

WOB 3 - Shallan's step-mother is confimed to just be a rural light eyes with no interesting connections, but Brandon says "Shallan's mother on the other hand..." However, was before WoR came out, so it could just be about what we saw on screen and nothing more. 

Edited by teknopathetic
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57 minutes ago, teknopathetic said:

This is my biggest one. If Shallan believes Testement is trapped in the safe, then how did she go yell at Testamant? Something else was in that safe. Something that glowed. 

Because it's a shardblade bonded to Shallan, it could easily be dismissed and recovered. Since Testament was still alive at the time, she would glow as a blade.

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8 hours ago, teknopathetic said:

However, Vorins are pretty specific about eye colour, and Taln is a dark eyes, but do Vorins believe he is a light-eyes? The Vorin church did change a lot to fit their ideology.

The pictures have the right colour for Taln's eyes

Quote

. Is it possible Chana's eyes changed colours when she used her powers/blade, but then they reverted back to a different colour like what happens to a regular darkeyes with a bonded blade that is lost?

Unlikely, Taln's eyes would be yellow or orange if it was true

Quote

-Others think it is odd that no one noticed Shallan's mother had burned out eyes post-death. Though there was a body for a bit, it is unclear what happened after, what would happen to a herald body in general, or what the whole deal is with Shallan thinking her mother's soul in in the safe.

In RoW it's made clear her eyes had burned out, no idea why how her father managed to hid it

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Posted (edited)

13 hours ago, LuckyJim said:

Because it's a shardblade bonded to Shallan, it could easily be dismissed and recovered. Since Testament was still alive at the time, she would glow as a blade.

Shallan is blinded by the amount of light that safe gives off, and no one else can see it (though Lin Davar might be able to as he often is caught looking towards the safe as well) 

And I agree! Testament easily could be dismissed and recovered. But as far as I know, dismissing a blade would not return it back the that safe? And if it can be dismissed and summoned, Shallan has no reason to think the blade is stuck in that safe.

Shallan’s memory doesn’t hold up imo. If she went to unbond Testemant in the garden, then I don’t believe her story about her father putting the sword in the safe. I think, personally, that he put whatever a herald used to form a new body (perhaps a gemstone?). Now that would be something traumatic and that would explain the glowing, it being a soul, and would allow for Shallan to go to the garden and see Testament without Shallan having to summon her all the while believing  Testament was trapped in the safe glowing like the sun. 
 

I think time passes and Shallan represses her mother being a herald, and conflates Testament with her mother’s soul, followed by another repression of the whole thing. 

Edited by teknopathetic
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Just now, teknopathetic said:

Shallan is blinded by the amount of light that safe gives off, and no one else can see it (though Lin Davas might be able to as he often is caught looking towards the safe as well) 

And I agree! Testament easily could be dismissed and recovered. But as far as I know, dismissing a blade would not return it back the that safe? And if it can be dismissed and summoned, Shallan has no reason to think the blade is stuck in that safe 

Shallan is mad, perceptions and beliefs don't exactly work normal with her

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Posted (edited)

5 hours ago, mathiau said:

Shallan is mad, perceptions and beliefs don't exactly work normal with her

Possible for sure! 
 

But Shallan is mad is a particular way. Full on sensory hallucination isn’t something we’ve seen besides this event. Shallan will actively repress something, but this story about seeing the light would be an all together separate thing from what we normally see her do. This is her adding something to the story instead or repressing details. The light would be an active hallucination or fabrication, which is not what Shallan is ever seen doing again.

I’m also curious that a lightweaver is seeing strange light while other dont seem too (besides Lin Davar who is caught looking towards the room a lot). 
 

Personally, I think we shouldn’t dismiss the light as insanity seeing as Dawnshard events and Dalinar both have seen strange light, too. We also know there is another secret, so why not the strange light in the safe?
 

On a meta level, why does Brandon need to make up a delusion for Shallan involving glowing light at all? It doesn’t match her other issues, so what’s the point there? and why have Lin do something similar at looking towards the room at odd times? We dismiss it because we dismiss Shallan as credible, but that to me is a lot of narrative time waisted by Brandon on an overly specific hallucination. Wouldn’t it make more sense for Brandon to add a glowing light, make us discount it, and then bring it back as relevant 3+ books later? He doesn’t seem the type to mention magical glowing light and trapped mother-souls without circling back on that eventually. Brandon clearly has planned out a twisted fact trail for Shallan, so this likely is a clue in some way. 

Edited by teknopathetic
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@teknopathetic something missing from the discussion for #3 above:  Shallan's the red stained carpet dominating her memories of her mother's death are incongruous with her being killed by a shardblade.

I recommend you append that discussion summary to your OP.  

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2 hours ago, Serack said:

@teknopathetic something missing from the discussion for #3 above:  Shallan's the red stained carpet dominating her memories of her mother's death are incongruous with her being killed by a shardblade.

I recommend you append that discussion summary to your OP.  

I always thought this was clearly referring to the others' blood. Lin was stabbed by the other guy, and then took the guy's knife and killed him with it, if I'm not mistaken. Plenty of blood in the room.

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Posted (edited)

1 hour ago, Jofwu said:

I always thought this was clearly referring to the others' blood. Lin was stabbed by the other guy, and then took the guy's knife and killed him with it, if I'm not mistaken. Plenty of blood in the room.

Ok, it's been a while, and I'll probably hold off another reread until Brandon is working on #5 (unless I manage to get my wife to read them)

Edited by Serack
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Posted (edited)

2 hours ago, Serack said:

Ok, it's been a while, and I'll probably hold off another reread until Brandon is working on #5 (unless I manage to get my wife to read them)

Worth mentioning maybe? Shallan doesn't seem too broken up about her mother's lover or her father being hurt, right? Potentially a clue and I will add it.

Edit: I agree it is odd that Shallan cares about the blood if her dead mother didn't actually bleed (why would she care about the lover's or the cut her father had? That wasn't her main concern)  

Edited by teknopathetic
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1 minute ago, teknopathetic said:

Worth mentioning maybe? Shallan doesn't seem too broken up about her Husband's lover or her father being hurt, right? Potentially a clue and I will add it. 

I had forgotten there were other injuries/corpses involved so without rereading, I think my voiced concern is addressed

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On 3/7/2021 at 10:42 PM, teknopathetic said:

There is also some confusion about Shallan's constant mention of the white carpet with blood stains. Was the body on that? Was that after the body moved? Is that a clue the body disappeared and the white carpet remained?

First of all, thanks for this awesome thread. I think it's generated some really great discussion.

I also caught one additional line that I don't think has been discussed and may be a part of the puzzle:

Quote

She looked up at her father with a shudder. She couldn't blink; her eyes were frozen open.

I point this out because blinking is how Shallan takes Memories. Specifically, the Memory is what she sees just as her eyes close:

Quote

Lady Radagu (paraphrased)

How do Shallan's Memory blinks work? When she takes a Memory, is it of what she sees in the instant before her eyes close, or is it while they're closed?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

It is what she sees right as they're closing.

Idaho Falls signing 2014 (Nov. 29, 2014)

So her inability to blink would have prevented her, even if she were inclined to do so, from taking a Memory of the scene before her. Could be part of why she's still so confused about the whole scene. This presupposes, of course, that she had that ability at the time. I can't think of any reason why she wouldn't, given how far along she seemed to be in her Ideals at the time.

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Posted (edited)

2 hours ago, teknopathetic said:

Worth mentioning maybe? Shallan doesn't seem too broken up about her mother's lover or her father being hurt, right? Potentially a clue and I will add it.

Edit: I agree it is odd that Shallan cares about the blood if her dead mother didn't actually bleed (why would she care about the lover's or the cut her father had? That wasn't her main concern)  

Here’s the passage, (earlier her father wipes blood off her face)

Quote

Father carried Shallan over the body of a woman in blue and gold. Little blood there. It was the man who bled. Mother lay facedown, so Shallan couldn’t see the eyes. The horrible eyes.

WoR chapter 10

 

Edited by Serack
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What I don’t get about this theory is one thing:

Everyone thinks that Taln was the bearer of the Oathpact Ash Kalak The Stormfather even Odium probably 

Woudnt they have noticed if it was someone else?

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Posted (edited)

9 minutes ago, Bejardin1250 said:

What I don’t get about this theory is one thing:

Everyone thinks that Taln was the bearer of the Oathpact Ash Kalak The Stormfather even Odium probably 

Woudnt they have noticed if it was someone else?

Well, in the first scene in TWoK, Kelek doesn't know which heralds survived and which heralds had died post-battle. So if Chana's body had died, there really is not any evidence that the other heralds would know about it magically. What is kind of confusing is that when a herald was perma-killed, the other Heralds felt it, but they do not appear to feel a temporary body-death like dying to a thunderclast or whatever. 

And under this theory, Chana really isn't dead very long before the she breaks (between 0 and 10 years depending on how long everything took).  There's not a lot of time for the heralds to think her absence is 

Edited by teknopathetic
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2 minutes ago, teknopathetic said:

Well, in the first scene in TWoK, the Kelek doesn't know which heralds survived and which heralds had died post-battle. So if Chana's body had died, there really is not any evidence that the other heralds would know about it magically. The heralds know Taln is there because someone saw him die in a battle.

And under this theory, Chana really isn't dead very long before the she breaks (between 0 and 10 years depending on how long everything took).  

Well that doesn’t explain the Stormfather who probably had his fact straight on this one

And all honor blades are different so Kalak could probably tell who’s wasn’t there

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Posted (edited)

7 minutes ago, Bejardin1250 said:

Well that doesn’t explain the Stormfather who probably had his fact straight on this one

And all honor blades are different so Kalak could probably tell who’s wasn’t there

Well Kelek does figure out who is dead by seeing the honourblades, but that just proves he didn't magically feel Taln die (but Kelek's inner monologue is very clear he didn't know who had survived before the meeting) 

And as for the Stormfather, when he sees Ash in OB, he says "I know them ..." in a confused tone, so I don't think he had managed to keep the best track overall. One could likely disappear for 10 years without much notice or concern. 

Edited by teknopathetic
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Posted (edited)

I was recently pointed at this thread :D Has anyone mentioned that the Stormfather explicitly says that none of the other Heralds has died and returned to Braize since Aharietiam?

Oathbringer chapter 38

Quote

HE FINALLY BROKE, the Stormfather said. HE HAS JOINED THE NINE, WHO STILL LIVE. IN THESE MILLENNIA NONE HAVE EVER DIED AND RETURNED TO DAMNATION, BUT IT DOESN’T MATTER AS IT ONCE DID. THE OATHPACT HAS BEEN WEAKENED ALMOST TO ANNIHILATION, AND ODIUM HAS CREATED HIS OWN STORM. THE FUSED DO NOT RETURN TO DAMNATION WHEN KILLED. THEY ARE REBORN IN THE NEXT EVERSTORM.

 

Edited by RShara
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1 hour ago, RShara said:

I was recently pointed at this thread :D Has anyone mentioned that the Stormfather explicitly says that none of the other Heralds has ever broken?

Oathbringer chapter 38

 

No he doesn't, he said Taln has joined the other 9 in Roshar and that in the time Taln held the oathpact none of the heralds died 

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Just on a point that's a few pages back: I don't think the Heralds made any deliberate alteration to the Oathpact at Aharietiam. It was always a choice they made at the end of each Desolation. They merely took a remarkable opportunity afforded to them because only one died, and that one was Taln.

Quote

"Ishar believes that so long as there is one of us still bound to the Oathpact, it may be enough." - Prelude to Way of Kings

The usual course of events would be that a Desolation continues until one of the Heralds dies and starts sealing the Fused in Damnation again. Usually it would be several of them, and the rest would choose to return to Damnation in order to share the agonies inflicted on them and extend the time between breaks as long as possible. Every time before when just one died, the others knew they would soon break without support. But this time, they all knew Taln wouldn't - they didn't need to return to keep the seal.

In the prelude, the decision had already been made when Kalak met Jezrien. He wasn't aware of any change to the Pact, and he didn't know who had died. I think this mechanic was always possible, they just never had the opportunity before, and had reached a point where none of them could bear it any more.

It may also be why Taln had a reputation for seeking out impossible causes - he knew the state of his colleagues, and wanted to be the first to die to give the others this opportunity. In his brief moment of lucidity when Dalinar swears an Ideal, he immediately grasped how good it was what the others had done.

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Posted (edited)

14 hours ago, Quick Ben said:

No he doesn't, he said Taln has joined the other 9 in Roshar and that in the time Taln held the oathpact none of the heralds died 

Sorry, yeah I meant none have died and returned to Braize, to break. Silly fingers not typing what my brain meant!

But that rather puts the nail in this theory, doesn't it?

Edited by RShara
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On 5/4/2021 at 4:44 PM, RShara said:

Sorry, yeah I meant none have died and returned to Braize, to break. Silly fingers not typing what my brain meant!

But that rather puts the nail in this theory, doesn't it?

It is unclear how the Stormfather would know this, considering as he just kind of barely  recognized Ash and Taln when they showed up again. I see your point, but the Stormfather is far from reliable. 

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