Jump to content

Sho Del Information


Recommended Posts

Since the Sho Del lore may be more canon than other elements, I thought it could be interesting to compile everything we learned here: 

Quote

Shardcast Interview (Jan. 23, 2021)

Brandon Sanderson

 [Dragonsteel Prime] Basically there's not a whole lot that's canon in that anymore. The Sho Del are, the dragons are, and the Tamu Keks are. But all the Hoid stuff is not really canon anymore. He'll get a completely new book backstory. 

 

  1. Sho Del Biology 
    1. The Sho Del are primarily white in colouration
    2. They have 6 limbs: four arms and two legs
    3. They have black eyes (among the few described)
    4. They have  hair-like parts described as grassy strands
    5. They refer to their "hair" as a mane and can curl/move according to emotion
    6. Their blood is white and milky
    7. Their bones/hearts are a mixture of dragonsteel axi, calcium, and and carbon
    8. Their bones/hearts are known as Tamu Keks to humans
    9. Tamu Keks are describes are realeasing something like Spiritual Energy not unlike metalic radiation (by Frost so probably true)
    10. There appear to be at least two genders: Female (a daughter) and Male ( a father)
    11. Females can spend years having children (described as being bedridden for 20 years having kids but is a possible hyperbole)
    12. Adulthood must be induced via the use of dragonsteel (unclear if pure or as a mixture) 
      1. This dragonsteel substance is referred to as Ana Ku Mae (likely pure dragonsteel)
      2. Adulthood is not possible if a Sho Del waits too long. This dreaded status is known as a Sha La Men Ves and is becomming more common as Sho Del struggle to collect an ample supply of Ana Ku Mae
         
  2. Fainlife Flora and Fauna
    • There are Animals in the Sho Del continent of U Poni Sho Del 
      • Sho Del warriors have animal mounts (real? illusions?)
        • "These beasts Jerick had never seen before were jumping through the air, traveling the vast distance between the Sho Del and human plateaus. They were large and reptilian, with four small legs in the front and two enormous ones at the back, legs powerful enough to jump even the fifty-foot chasm. Each beast bore a Sho Del on its back"
        • The Lord fo the War rides one at one point, making me think these beasts do exist in small numbers at leas
          • "the monster reined its beast in and paused, looking at his fleeing opponents. His face seemed to pause on Jerick, staring at him, though no eyes were visible beneath the dark helm"
             
      1. Sho Del animals might sometimes enter normal areas
        • A lizard is seen in Jerick's town
          • possibly came with the Sho Del assassin as the Assassin was "very angry" when the town killed the lizard
            • "A creature of darkness—or so the priests said. It had a thin, flat head with black eyes, and, unlike any normal lizard, its mouth was lined with teeth. It hissed loudly at its captors as it unrolled, its long tail raising as if to strike. Its most distinguishing feature, however, was its legs. An extra set of limbs sprouted from its belly, making it look almost like some overlarge insect rather than a lizard."
               
    1. Sho Del Forest Description as seen from quite some distance:
      • "Jerick was accustomed to pines, which tended to grow relatively far apart from one another. U Poni Sho Del’s forest was more like a wall of foliage; one mass of solid shrubbery as opposed to a line of tree. And, of course, the plants were all bone white. Fain animals he had seen before, but it had never really occurred to him that the plants would be Fain as well."
         
    2. Fain Wood might provide some magical abilities according to the prologue:
      1. The dying soldier bought a wooden charm from a Horwatcher; it let him hear the conversation between dragons and the Lord of the War (who is either a human or a god but is not Sho Del)

        "He gasped in pain for a few moments, then reached up with his left hand, wrapping his fingers around the small wooden charm at his neck. His good luck charm, purchased for an incredible sum from a traveling Horwatcher wizard

        The Lord of the War still stood beside the Dragonsteel well. The lead dragon stared down at the Lord, its dark eyes unreadable. Somehow, Adsen felt like he could feel the creature’s emotions. He was seeing something he shouldn’t; something that was not of men. Something between the Lord of the War and this dragon

        Suddenly, Adsen’s charm began to vibrate. He blinked in surprise. He had paid good money for the charm, but he hadn’t really expected it to do anything. Had the Horwatcher actually been telling the truth

        We are leaving. The words exploded in Adsen’s mind, ramming their way in through the pain and surprise. Somehow he knew that the lead dragon, the old one, had spoken. The words seemed to come through Adsen’s charm, entering directly into his mind

        Adsen could feel surprise, and anger, from the Lord of the War. Leaving?
        the Lord of the War said, his voice projected through Adsen’s charm."
         
      2. *Possibly* Jerick had a fainlife tree near his property and his castmark is made of it.
        1. Jerick stood before the massive tree. He had never been able to determine just what kind of tree it was—it had leaves rather than needles, but its bark was flaky and layered like that of a waxpole pine. It seemed to grow out more than up, its thick branches extending almost horizontally, like enormous vines. All of the branches were long and twisted, and they didn’t seem like they should be able to grow out as far as they did without breaking. Yet, each branch was powerful; Jerick had climbed in them many times, and they barely gave way beneath his weight. It was like they were made of metal rather than wood" ...

          The tips of the upper branches were dark and brittle, the bark charred. Lightning had struck here many times, but, for some reason, the tree had never started on fire. The top of the tree did not come to a point, like the pines or firs he had climbed. Instead, the ancient tree ended in a fat round knob, branches spreading out from it like the palm of a man’s hand
           
        2. Oddities
          1. The colour of this tree is never mentioned (the black colour is actually just a lightning strike).
          2. The cast mark is stained so we never learn the colour that way
          3. The tree is described as maybe having metal in it for support (fain sho del and dragons have metal in them)
          4. Resists fire
          5. Grows out to the side more than up (like the tree walls seen at a far distance in U Poni Sho Del)
          6. Jerick didn't know Fain trees were a thing until the end of the book and he never sees them up close
          7. There is a "source of power" in Jerick's village, and Jerrick;s power is somehow connected to it. Perhaps this tree is a magical tree separate entirely from Fainlife or perhaps this tree is somehow connected to fainlife. 
             
  3. Connection to Dragons:
    1. Dragons are Fain and also have dragonsteel in/on their bodies
    2. Worshiped dragons are called the Dra Sho U Fel by the Sho Del (unclear if all dragons are called this)
    3. Some humans can commune with dragons using Tamu Keks (not easy; not simple; more in one spot makes it easier)  
    4. Sho Del started worshipping dragons on their own
      1. "We leave them because of their need, the dragon replied. We never asked for their worship, but we have done the best with it that we could. Now they have chosen to listen to you instead of us. Gods are not gods when they are ignored"
         
  4. Named Sho Del
    1. Du Len:
      • Is a female child who has not taken Ana Ku Mae to enter adulthood
      • Is a Kame Ken Den Tu (magic adept person)
      • Is the daughter of the council leader
      • Is unsure of becoming an adult
         
    2. Fa Len Ko Mar
      • Is the council elder and likely leader of the Shattered Plains forces
      • Called Fa Len by his daughter
      • Is male
      • Is a Kame Ken Den Tu (magic adept)
         
  5. Sho Del Magic
    1. Cognitive Illusions
      1. Can project these into the minds of others
      2. The enemy mind fills in the details of the illusions meaning the same projection can vary from person to person
      3. Illusions can deal real harm, block real swords, and kill.
      4. Projecting "nothing" where something is doesn't work well
      5. Illusions require constant concentration and disappear if not projected.
      6. Effects like succumbing later to post illusion-injury  may require other mental projections for a time
      7. Minds can be trained to resist many of these illusions but its not perfect. 
         
    2. Sho Del are able to broadcast their thoughts precisely or widely
      1. "Though I have trouble believing any Sho Del would be careless enough to broadcast so widely that a bystander could hear" - Topaz
         
    3. Sho Del might use items/tamu keks to cast sonic spells (potentially an illusion? Feels different maybe)
      1. "The Sho Del calmly lowered its bow, then reached into his cloak to re- move something thin and white. He closed his eyes and his mouth began to move slightly, his thumb rubbing the object. A spear, thrown by one of the approaching guards, slammed into the ground beside the creature. The Sho Del did not move.

        Jerick felt what happened next, and he thought he could see it too. A wiggling bubble exploded suddenly from the stranger, a translucent thing that wavered and vibrated. It moved impossibly quick, expanding like a ripple in water, and it hit Jerick before he could even jump back. Only then did he realize what the bubble was. Sound. He was seeing sound.

        It crashed like thunder, thunder that had struck incredibly close. It slammed into Jerick’s ears, making him gasp in pain. The guards dropped their weapons and put their hands to their ears, groaning in agony. The sound, however, had not been intended just for human ears. Its suddenness startled the massive horde of cattle, causing them to call and run madly.

        -----
        Thats what I caught! I would be happy to hear what other lore bits people picked up 😃

Edited by teknopathetic
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@teknopathetic, Thank you for this exhaustive summary!  Some thoughts:

Are Sho Del actually described as having 6 limbs in Dragonsteel? Because I remember wondering about it whenever I read fighting scenes with them, where they never used more than 2 hands/arms. Likewise, all it takes for the Lord of War to disguise himself as one of them is wearing armour with a  concealing helmet. They do, of course, have 4 arms in canon after TLM and Yumi.

Are dragons Fain, given their human form? Or are they something in-between? Maybe an intended bridge between the 2 ecologies?

I also find it interesting that unlike in  the few chapters of Liar of Partinel that have been made public, Fain ecology doesn't seem to be invasive or transformative.

Regarding Adsen's charm, isn't it more likely that it contains a bit of tamu-kek than that the fain wood itself allows one to hear mental communication? 

 

Edited by Isilel
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Isilel said:

@teknopathetic, Thank you for this exhaustive summary!  Some thoughts:

Are Sho Del actually described as having 6 limbs in Dragonsteel? Because I remember wondering about it whenever I read fighting scenes with them, where they never used more than 2 hands/arms. Likewise, all it takes for the Lord of War to disguise himself as one of them is wearing armour with concealing helmet. They do, of course, have 4 arms in canon after TLM and Yumi.

Are dragons Fain, given their human form? Or are they something in-between? Maybe an intended bridge between the 2 ecologies?

I also find it interesting that unlike in  the few chapters of Liar of Partinel that have been made public, Fain ecology doesn't seem to be invasive or transformative.

Regarding Adsen's charm, isn't it more likely that it contains a bit of tamu-kek than that the fain wood itself allows one to hear mental communication? 

 

Six Limbs: 

The legends all say that Xeth made his creations have an extra set of limbs, so I believe they must have 6. Though I agree the extra limbs dont seem to be used well in the combat descriptions. 

"Xeth the Black saw his brother’s creations and scoffed. He saw no point in them. Xeth, however, always found joy in spiting Oreon. So, in order to mock his elder brother, he too created a race of beings, but his creations were flawed. They were of pure white skin and had an extra set of limbs"

or

"Xeth the Black heard of this and was jealous. He too wanted the fol- lowing of man, for he was a loathsome and vile beast who had the love of no creature, despite his beauty and power. However, he knew he had not the strength of the great creator Oreon, so he went to the one known as the Mother of the World, Slonis, and begged her help, lying to her, saying he wanted to present Oreon with a gift. Together the two gods created a race, but their power was not equal to that of Oreon, and this race of man was flawed. Its skin was white and did not tan, and it had the wrong number of arms, four instead of two"

Brandon doesnt seem to describe Sho Del limbs though:

"The strange man frowned, dropping his bow to the ground. Except, he wasn’t a man. Jerick’s eyes opened wide as he realized the servant’s face had changed along with his bearing. It looked something like that of a human—two eyes, a firm nose, and delicate features. Except the servant’s face was a pale white, the color of bone, and his eyes were pure black. A Sho Del. Fain"

or

"The Sho Del assassin stood quietly beside the tent, just a few feet away from Jerick. The creature had lowered the hood of its cloak, revealing a white, almost human-like head that stared at Rodis with solemn black eyes. Long ivory wisps covered its scalp, blowing freely in the wind. The creature’s face was expressionless as it dropped the bow, drew a thin-bladed sword, then rushed toward the king."

or

 

"jerick shook his head, pulling himself into the present. The Sho Del wore a tight-fitting pair of green leggings and shirt, its bone-white arms sticking out of short sleeves. It held a gleaming bronze sword in its hand, and it was running toward the king"

So it is really under described. I am not sure how shoulders would even function if there were two sets. Maybe the extra arms are only semi functional? 

-----

Dragons and Fain:
Brandon has said elsewhere that dragons are fain. I took them to be fain as well since they have dragonsteel and 6 limbs. 

 

Questioner

Further, how relevant to this is [it] that if you count four legs plus two wings, dragons have six limbs?

Brandon Sanderson

Yep, that is the exact correlation that I would like you to draw! Dragons are fain, if you're wondering. If that's what the question is, yes, dragons are fain.

----

The Charm

Totally possible that the charm has bone. However, it is described as being wood, so that is all we have to go with.  Seeing that Jerrick may have gotten some powers from "the source of power" in his home town, which is likely that weird Fainish tree, there is room here that fain trees might do something. But you are correct I think and this could also just be an unreliable narrator not knowing there was fain stuff in the wood. 

Edited by teknopathetic
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 5/29/2024 at 3:30 PM, teknopathetic said:

Females can spend years having children (described as being bedridden for 20 years but is a possible hyperbole)

I took that not to mean that their gestation period is insanely long but that the Sho Del numbers are dwindling and if she became an adult, Du Len would pretty much be forced to spend the next 20 years pushing out kid after kid to help perpetuate their race.

 

On 5/29/2024 at 3:30 PM, teknopathetic said:

Jerick didn't know Fain trees were a thing until the end of the book and he never sees them up close

I dont know, even if someone doesnt know what fain is youd think that a massive bone white tree in the middle of a forest of greenery would merit a mention or some reaction.

 

39 minutes ago, teknopathetic said:

So it is really under described. I am not sure how shoulders would even function if there were two sets. Maybe the extra arms are only semi functional? 

I always imagined their second set of arms as being like Stitch's from Lilo & Stitch lol. Coming out of the body under the first set, around the waist/ribcage area.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...