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The Ghostbloods *Spoilers*

The Count

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I am right in the middle of my 3rd reading of WoK (didn't mean to start reading it again so soon but got hooked again by the posts and quotes on here... doh!)

Anyway I have been thinking more and more about the Ghostbloods and weather they are actually the Evil League of Evil that we all assume.

From what I rememeber there are three main references to the Ghostbloods in the book:

1/ Amaram assumes that the shard wearer killed by Kaladin is a Ghostblood

2/ Kasbal has the tatoo of a ghostblood

3/ Shallan's father allo has this tatoo.

((If there are any further references I have missed please feel free to add them))

If you accept the theory that The Shardbearer was Halaran then all three have links to Shallan... but that is slightly off topic.

So lets look at each of these in turn:

1/ If we assume that Amaram was correct and this is a Ghostblood then he was fighting Amaram (and by extension Sadeas). Since Sadeas is the embodiment of everything bad in the Alethi... is the enemy if my enemy my friend?

Of course, Amaram could be wrong, or we could be wrong about the Shardbearers motive.

2/ Kasbal wanted to kill Jasnah. This is clear cut. However, I think he genuinely did not want to kill Shallan and was genuinely concerned about her.

This makes me think he was not so much evil, as misguided. I think he felt that there was a very good reason that Jasnah should die.

Of course you could argue that if Shallan's father was important to the Ghostbloods then his daughter's death at their hands would not help their schemes. Kasbal could have feared for his life / plans rather than for Shallan directly.

3/ Shallans father seems certain to have been a Ghostblood. He also had a terrible temper (one that may have led to his violent death). But this in itself doesn't mean the society was evil. Bad men can still be working for honorable goals...

I am more inclined toward the notion that the Ghostblood are a political socienty rather than any agent of Odium. Their goal seens to be to destabalise the old area of Alethela (now Alethkar and Jah Kaved). This would fit with assassinating the kings sister, conquering Sadeas' (the kings main supporter) princedom and putting a puppet on the throne of Jah Kaved.

Are the Ghostbloods actually trying to 'unite' old Alethela?

I know this is all pure speculation we have nowhere near enough information about the Ghostbloods to make any judgements. But Brandon certainly seems to be implying that they are the nasty party, and that make me suspicious.

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In the name of being a devil's advocate, I'll do what I can to kill this idea :)

For starts, I'm SURE they had a good reason for attacking Jasnah and Amaram. As is said in Warbreaker, everybody's got a reason, and they all think it's a good one. Gavilar believed Szeth was a ghostblood, which means said group of people is known by Gavilar, and was the kind of group he'd first suspect of killing him.

Well, that's all I've got for now.

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Aaaand for more wild speculation on this subject you can look here and here B) .

Thanks for the links, loads of good discussion on these places.

Further thoughts on this now that i am 70% through my re-read....

I think The point raised in the above threads regarding Kasbal's outburst is significant (more than just personal motivation)

It seems like Thaidakar is a well known person (at least in political circles).

So futher to my theory above...

I think that The Ghostbloods are a "radical" arm of the Ardentia who are persuing the aims of the time before the Heirocracy (sp?).

I also think that Thaidakar may be the political head of the Ardentia (there has to a head priest somewhere, right?)

This would fit with both the destbalisation of Alethkar / Unite Alethela theory (since that was the goal of the Ardentia before the Heirocracy) as well as the assassination of high political figures to that end.

The Ardentia are a pretty secretive lot already so a militant wing which is officially denounced as a myth by the higher Ardents would fit the scenario quite well.

All still speculation of course but... well... it's fun to guess.

Edited by MadRand
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It seems unlikely that the ghostbloods are evil incarnate. Brandon seldom creates groups which are pure anything at all. Individuals can be evil in his works, as well as misguided, insane, and selfish, but groups are almost always a mix of the above.

This doesn't mean what they are doing is good, or even unselfish. We just don't know enough.

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My wild speculation on this is that they may be a sub-organization of the 17th shard on Roshar. They would want to kill Jasnah because she could potentially wordlhop (assuming they know about the access to Shadesmar), and I have no idea about Amaram if it was indeed a ghostblood. Just pure speculation, but that's what I think may have a possibility of being true.

Also, did anyone ask Brandon about the shardbearer that attacked Amaram in the Q&A? If so, was it RAFO'd?

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I asked if Amaram ever found out who it was. (Along with 6 other short questions... I went a bit overboard.) Brandon hasn't written anything about being done with the Q&A, so as long as he decides to finish answering them, there's hope. There's still 4 more people with questions before mine. Kurkistan followed up with a "Was it Shallan's brother?", but I think that's a guaranteed RAFO.

I don't think the Ghostbloods are necessarily evil, and I'm sure they don't see themselves that way. Almost everyone in the series is using a "for the greater good" mentality. Taravangian liked a lot of the people he had Szeth kill, he just thinks that more effective leadership for the troubling times ahead can be achieved by killing off current leaders. (I think Taravangian is Restares, by the way.) Thaidakar and the Ghostbloods might even have the same exact goal, but consider themselves the better choice for leadership.

The other question is where the loyalties of all the Houses are? Amaram is considered to be loyal to Sadeas, but he used Restares as his guiding moral judgement when deciding what to do about Kaladin and the Shards. Gavilar considers Sadeas and Restares separately from each other and Thaidakar as Szeth's masters when he's dying, so it's unlikely that they are closely allied, if they are allied at all.

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