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Dred's arrival at the Cleansing


RAND AL THOR
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According to Demandred's POV, he instantly figured out Rand's plan with the Cleansing as soon as he figured out where it was being used.

 

Presumably, he knew of its location prior to going there.

 

Why then, did he gateway himself right into the centre of the city which was being used by the Dragon Reborn in a huge experiment (with potentially disastrous consequences) to Cleanse the Taint of the Dark One on the Power that drove the Universe?

 

He knew what Rand was doing (apparently). And yet he goes right into the city. I can't see anyone with even 5g of brains doing that.

 

Possible reasons? (Aside the obvious)

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Wasn't this topic brought up within one of the other topics?

 

No matter.

 

Besides the obvious suggestion of him being an idiot, which you can't really believe, you should think that he was curious. Curious about what Shadar Logoth looked like during the Cleansing. Curious about the effects the Cleansing would have on the city.

 

But beyond that, you can't assume that he'd know that there would be a huge dome encompassing the city. He may have figured that Rand's plan was to Cleanse the taint, but that doesn't mean he knows exactly how or what the result would be in any sense. He wouldn't even know if it would work. For that matter, I bet not even Rand knew what it would look like or what to expect. So why would Demandred?

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I thought he was intending to interrupt the process and prevent saidin from being cleansed and hopefully kill Rand or at least still him not sure how he intended to do that though, perhaps by corrupting Rand's channeling or breaking his conduit which saidin was flowing through.

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Wasn't this topic brought up within one of the other topics?

 

 

Yes. But its so intriguing that it deserves its own thread. Besides, few people discussed it there.

 

For that matter, I bet not even Rand knew what it would look like or what to expect. So why would Demandred?

 

Yes, but Demandred was able to reason out Rand's plan of using the two opposing evils to remove the taint. That, along with the fact that Rand would be channeling using the CK, very strongly suggests that SL is a very vulnerable and unsafe location during the process. Even if he were curious, he ought to have gatewayed outside it and then made his way in. It makes no sense to enter right into the middle of the place when he knows that it is being used in this manner.

 

The outcome could not have been predicted- but SL was obviously a very unstable location.

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Demandred might have guessed the Cleansing's aftermath would destroy Shadar Logoth, but the process had just begun. And besides, he opened the gateway, checked inside to see if things were being destroyed left and right, saw that it was - rather - peaceful, and went through.

 

There's nothing illogical about this.

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"He had reasoned out what al'Thor's plan had to be as soon as he realized

where the access key was. A brilliant scheme, he did not mind admitting, however insanely dangerous. Lews Therin had always been a brilliant planner, too, if not so brilliant as everyone made out. Not nearly as brilliant as Demandred himself."

 

Interesting that he stepped right into the middle of this insanely dangerous plan.

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You have to look at the context. He's not just saying "insanely dangerous" in general. He's not saying it can potentially destroy the city or anything. The context is that it is insanely dangerous for the person doing the Cleansing.

 

And, as Asmo said, he didn't exactly open a gateway and walk straight through. I think if he'd seen any devastation, he would not have continued through the gateway.

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You have to look at the context. He's not just saying "insanely dangerous" in general. He's not saying it can potentially destroy the city or anything. The context is that it is insanely dangerous for the person doing the Cleansing.

 

And, as Asmo said, he didn't exactly open a gateway and walk straight through. I think if he'd seen any devastation, he would not have continued through the gateway.

I agree with Roxinos and Asmo here.    Yes, Dred figured it out and stepped right into the fire so to speak - but First - He surely checked through his gateway first. 

 

And Second - what choice did he really have.    The DO had commanded the Chosen to fight Rand at the Cleansing and in this would obviously not accept any excuses.  So face it ALL his choices were in the order of Extreemly Dangerous.  The Chosen were being sent up against a guy that had the CK and Challender with little or no preparation.

 

Actually, Dred's plan was quite brilliant - he would have figured that SL was going to be a real bad place to be - eventually - but he hoped that he could get in there and do his business - then get out quickly, before shit hit the fan.  It was only after he got in there that he decided that things were going down hill too quickly and had to abandoned that plan.    If he had had just a little more time - it would have been a brilliant success and much less dangerous than going toe to toe with Challender and all those circles.

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If Rand had stuck to his original plan, it would have just been him and Nynaeve and maybe Lan.  So Demandred could have gated in, finished everyone off, grabbed the Choeden Kal, and gated out.  Of course, his gateway location was a little strange, but he might have reasoned that there was more cover in the city.  Plus, he's a Chosen.  They view themselves as a far superior brand of human.  And Demandred views himself in particular as far superior to Lews Therin, and therefore far more superior to Rand.

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And besides, he opened the gateway, checked inside to see if things were being destroyed left and right, saw that it was - rather - peaceful, and went through.

 

"If he could undo what al'Thor had done at the source, Demandred thought as he stepped through his gateway into Shadar Logoth, undo it sharply and suddenly, that might well kill the man, or at least sear the ability to channel out of him."

 

Where here does it suggest that he paused before stepping through? He was thinking of something while entering the city- that does not indicate that he was carefully analyzing the city from the other side. The only possibility of that would be if he did that before the scene began but even then, he would have been more cautious when entering.

 

And afterwards:

 

"One look at the rubble-strewn street changed his mind about altering anything, though. Beside him rose half a pale dome, its shattered top two hundred feet or more above the street, and above it, the sky held

the light of midmorning. From the broken rim of the ruin down to the street, though, the air was dark with shadows, as if night were already falling. The city . . . quivered. He could feel it through his boots."

 

Here I can agree that he could not have anticipated this and left at once since the danger was clearly much greater than he had previously expected.

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Well, we know that to a limited degree the Forsaken understood the physics of what was happening. Moghedian's POV shows that Aran'gar was theorising on what the effects of the black dome might be long before Rand began showing a degree of understanding--they knew enough to predict the way events would proceed.

 

From there Demandred is arrogant--brilliant, yes, but by the quoted comment he clearly underestimated the imediacy of the effects of the Cleansing.

 

Stupid is probably not the right word--overconfident in his own knowledge might suit better.

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Where here does it suggest that he paused before stepping through? He was thinking of something while entering the city- that does not indicate that he was carefully analyzing the city from the other side. The only possibility of that would be if he did that before the scene began but even then, he would have been more cautious when entering.

 

You said his reasoning for going directly into SL yourself with that quote. I stand by what I said, though. If he'd seen any devastation before stepping through, he would not have gone in. Unfortunately, he could not see the dome that Rand has created until after stepping through.

 

Of course, his gateway location was a little strange, but he might have reasoned that there was more cover in the city.

 

It's not very strange. RAND AL THOR said it himself. Demandred was attempting to sever Rand's attempts at the source of his attempts. He hoped to either burn him out or kill him. He knew the center of the Cleansing was Shadar Logoth, so he went there to stop it. It was only when he the sheer daunting quality of the dome and the effect of Rand's Cleansing overcame his arrogance that he regretted his decision to go directly into Shadar Logoth and attack Rand indirectly.

 

It wasn't a stupid move. It was a very calculated and intelligent move. Aided by Demandred's arrogance and feeling of superiority over Rand/Lews Therin which was then destroyed by the sheer magnificence of the event.

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Well, I just consider it slightly strange because I wouldn't decide to gate into the city which is home to an evil homicidal mist.  I would gate just outside, then walk in.  By the way, was Rand actually in Shadar Logoth?  It's been a while since I read the part on the Cleansing.

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If I recall correctly, no, he was not in Shadar Logoth. Rand was just outside of it on a hill.

 

I'm fairly certain that no matter how deep in thought Demandred was, he would have noticed Mashadar had it been floating wherever he decided to open his gateway. Not to mention the fact that it was still during the day, and while Shadar Logoth is dangerous, it is slightly less so during the day.

 

You might gate just outside and walk in, but Demandred wanted to get in and get out as quickly as possible. The best vantage point for his plans to dismantle whatever Rand was weaving was inside the city, from the center of Rand's focus.

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Keep in mind that except for ishy/mordain the forsaken have been sealed for over 3500 years.  I doubt when Dem first felt the flare he said, "Egad, Al'Thor's at SL....Oh, I see what he's doing!"

 

No, he probally didn't know a whole lot about SL to begin with, except what ishy/mordain and some Fades would have told him.  But he probally thought Gating right to Rand's feet would have been stupid.  So he adjusted the gate to the "left" and came out in the ruined city.

 

Then he would have looked around, felt the auras, did some tests, felt the opposing evil, then thought to himself, "I believe this is that SL place I heard about that died in the Trolloc Wars over 2000 years ago.  Now I see what he's doing.  So, how can I stop it."

 

Their have been several examples of how the forsaken DO NOT know everything about everywhere and everybody.   

 

 

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Keep in mind that except for ishy/mordain the forsaken have been sealed for over 3500 years.  I doubt when Dem first felt the flare he said, "Egad, Al'Thor's at SL....Oh, I see what he's doing!"

 

In fact, according to his POV, this is exactly what he thought. He immediately figured out Rand's plan as soon as he realized where the key was being used.

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He may be arrogant and self-congratulatory, but I'm quite sure that he figured it out. Needless to say, he is a better strategist than Lews Therin and Rand. The only thing that makes him weaker than Rand is his arrogance, much the same as the swordmaster Rand fought at the end of tGH.

 

No, he probally didn't know a whole lot about SL to begin with, except what ishy/mordain and some Fades would have told him. 

 

Shadar Logoth is not some myth or legend to be passed around like an old wives' tale. Especially not to the Shadow. Shadar Logoth was the only major threat to any force of the Great Lord's beyond the armies of the North. The Chosen, upon their awakening, learned as much as they could about the world and then entrenched themselves where they felt the most comfortable. I'm fairly certain that if their only source of information about the world was the Fades and trollocs, they would have heard about Shadar Logoth.

 

And by "hear" I don't mean a Fade putting on a spooky voice, getting a flashlight and pointing it under his face, and then saying, "There's this place called Shadar Logoth." I mean, they were so terrified of the place that trollocs would not even enter unless driven directly by a Fade, and even then, the Fade was not likely to want to force anyone unless driven directly by Ba'alzamon.

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I agree in that I'm pretty sure Demandred knew exactly what Rand was up to when he realized where they were. He even acknowledged it's brilliance.

 

However, Dred's problem is that he always thought he was LTT's equal, and he never was- and he still isn't now. Dred would never have the balls to try this if he were in Rand's place, and for all his talk about being this or that- he still accomplished nothing at all at the Cleansing. Again he tries to strike from the shadows when the only way to undo what was being done was to kill al'Thor. Aginor was the only one who got close. I hope when Dred finally does reveal himself that the confrontation at least lasts a couple of minutes.

 

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However, Dred's problem is that he always thought he was LTT's equal, and he never was- and he still isn't now.

 

Correction.

 

Demandred always thought he was better than Lews Therin.

 

Lews Therin had always been a brilliant planner, too, if not so brilliant as everyone made out. Not nearly as brilliant as Demandred himself.
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However, Dred's problem is that he always thought he was LTT's equal, and he never was- and he still isn't now. Dred would never have the balls to try this if he were in Rand's place, and for all his talk about being this or that- he still accomplished nothing at all at the Cleansing.

He was also outnumbered and outgunned.  Of course, anyone with the balls would take on a superior force with one of the most powerful sa'angreals in existence, especially when all they could do was get annihilated.

 

Again he tries to strike from the shadows when the only way to undo what was being done was to kill al'Thor.

Where I come from, we call this "smart."  Like snipers.  The goal is to inflict maximum damage on the enemy with minimal damage to your own forces.  That's why we don't do open warfare like in the American Revolution, where people walked up in lines and blasted at each other in the open until someone retreated.

 

In regards to Demandred's effectiveness, I agree that it was a poor tactical decision.  Every good strategian needs one thing, information.  He was arrogant enough to believe that he'd accounted for every possible occurrence.  However, that does not mean he is a bad strategian.  It means he's arrogant.  He made the correct decision in retreating.  When you can't win a battle, you retreat to fight a different one.

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However, Dred's problem is that he always thought he was LTT's equal, and he never was- and he still isn't now. Dred would never have the balls to try this if he were in Rand's place, and for all his talk about being this or that- he still accomplished nothing at all at the Cleansing.

He was also outnumbered and outgunned.  Of course, anyone with the balls would take on a superior force with one of the most powerful sa'angreals in existence, especially when all they could do was get annihilated.

 

Again he tries to strike from the shadows when the only way to undo what was being done was to kill al'Thor.

Where I come from, we call this "smart."  Like snipers.  The goal is to inflict maximum damage on the enemy with minimal damage to your own forces.  That's why we don't do open warfare like in the American Revolution, where people walked up in lines and blasted at each other in the open until someone retreated.

 

In regards to Demandred's effectiveness, I agree that it was a poor tactical decision.  Every good strategian needs one thing, information.  He was arrogant enough to believe that he'd accounted for every possible occurrence.  However, that does not mean he is a bad strategian.  It means he's arrogant.  He made the correct decision in retreating.  When you can't win a battle, you retreat to fight a different one.

 

Excellent summary of my feelings on this  -  except for the end.    If this had been a real situation - not fiction, I feel that although it was scareing the shit out of him, he should have gone through with his plan.    It was an excellent plan and depending on how long it would have taken him to - weave his reversal/sabatoge spell - he should have.  That is assuming it was something that did not take too long.  Hell he was already in there and had already decided what he needed to do to create the "backlash", a few more minutes and he could have avoided all the running from the Challender blasts and the fight with Flynn.    Instead he chickened out at the crutial moment of opportunity - He Obviously had NO BALLS!    His problem with LTT all along MIGHT not have been that he was not Brilliant enough, but that he never had the guts to follow through.   

 

Look at LTT - back at the sealing of the Bore - when the females refused to help - he addapted his plan and did it without them.  In my opinion going to the Bore in the middle of SG with all the forces of the DO against them would have been on par with going to SL during the Cleansing - but LTT & his 100 stuck with it and did the job.  They had the Balls, Dred did not.    Nuff  Said!!!!

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You're forgetting two things.

1) He had no idea where Rand was.  He could see the weaving, but he'd still have to find Rand first to attack him.  Also, he had no idea whether Rand had defenses in place.  So he could channel in that general direction all he wanted, but he wouldn't be able to get through defenses like Cadsuane's.

2) He opened a gate, probably using reversed (or is it inverted?) weaves.  He steps through and immediately comes under attack from a distance a la Cadsuane's terangreal.  This means that he was coming under attack by someone who could sense his weaves and target where he was before they could see him.  Moreover, the person had to be powerful to attack from that distance.

Conclusion?  Get the hell out of there and attack from another angle.  I don't see what's so cowardly about that.

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"If he could undo what al'Thor had done at the source, Demandred thought as he stepped through his gateway into Shadar Logoth, undo it sharply and suddenly, that might well kill the man, or at least sear the ability to channel out of him."

 

The plan was not to Channel AT Rand but to channel something within the confines of SL that would cause the Cleansing weave to crash and/or bounce back at Rand.  He did not need to See Rand to do this and the warding weaves that were protecting Rand would not be likely to protect him from his own weave bouncing back at him.  With all the saidin & saidar power that he was using it would have probably created a massive backlash that could well have burned out everyone that was even with Rand.    Dred might well have burned out all his Forsaken buddies as well - if they were too close.  -  Although that is just a guess on the last part.    If he had only had the guts to stay a little longer & do it.

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