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Prologue "What the Storm Means" Spoiler Thread


Aiemond
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On a different topic from the prologue, did anyone else take notice of Mesaana's dress?

 

"Mesaana seated herself. She had chin-length dark hair and watery blue eyes. Her floor-length white dress bore no embroidery, and she wore no jewelry. A scholar to the core. Sometimes Graendal thought Mesaana had gone over to the Shadow because it offered a more interesting opportunity for research.", [brandon Sanderson, What the Storm Means: The Prologue to The Gathering Storm]

...

"Mesaana cut in, stepping forward, plain dress brushing the mirror-bright black marble floor.", [brandon Sanderson, What the Storm Means: The Prologue to The Gathering Storm]

 

Immediately, my mind jumped to a novice dress!  I know people have gone on and on speculating about this sister or that for mesaana, but could she simply be posing as a novice?  I mean, before coming to this meeting, she likely would not take the time to change and the dress described seems to match a novice white.  It would make it much easier than posing as a sister and having to learn all of her intricate histories.

 

Did this sections strike anyone else?

 

That part never clicked in my head. It makes sense for her to be a novice as no one would suspect her and it would allow her to be fairl unnoticeable.

 

However, it doesn't fit with her personality and past. I don't think a scholar from the AoL who was deemed not worthy enough to be taught at the highest research institute would become a "student" and listen to the lectures of "children calling themselves Aes Sedai." I think it'd fit more if she was an Aes Sedai of the Brown Ajah but who knows?

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However, it doesn't fit with her personality and past. I don't think a scholar from the AoL who was deemed not worthy enough to be taught at the highest research institute would become a "student" and listen to the lectures of "children calling themselves Aes Sedai." I think it'd fit more if she was an Aes Sedai of the Brown Ajah but who knows?

 

But, she was also known for indoctrinating children and turning them into her army for the shadow, so being with the novices might be a perfect place for her to work from.  We'll see. It was a small thing, but having graendal immediately link the unadorned plain white dress to a scholar seemed a misdirection that made it more important.

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I'm disputing it. Rand only killed half the Trollocs at Tarwin's gap. He unnerved the remainder enough that they routed when the Shienarans charged. The Two Rivers had maybe 10,000 Trollocs in it, that's chump change. So at Tear 100,000 Trollocs were killed and at Tarwin's Gap several hundred thousand more were slain.  That isn't that bad especially when you have two years worth of maturing Trollocs entering the force to make up for those killed at the Gap.

 

My only question would then be the starting pop base of the Trolloc hordes and their rate of replacement.

 

Of course, the BBWBA suggests they reproduce like rabbits *and* are pretty much fully grown in a couple of years.

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I'm disputing it. Rand only killed half the Trollocs at Tarwin's gap. He unnerved the remainder enough that they routed when the Shienarans charged. The Two Rivers had maybe 10,000 Trollocs in it, that's chump change. So at Tear 100,000 Trollocs were killed and at Tarwin's Gap several hundred thousand more were slain.  That isn't that bad especially when you have two years worth of maturing Trollocs entering the force to make up for those killed at the Gap.

 

My only question would then be the starting pop base of the Trolloc hordes and their rate of replacement.

 

Of course, the BBWBA suggests they reproduce like rabbits *and* are pretty much fully grown in a couple of years.

To have fought the Ten Nations, Aiel and the Sharans at the same time I'd think they would have needed to put about 5 million in the field and I don't see why they wouldn't have that number available now.

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I'm disputing it. Rand only killed half the Trollocs at Tarwin's gap. He unnerved the remainder enough that they routed when the Shienarans charged. The Two Rivers had maybe 10,000 Trollocs in it, that's chump change. So at Tear 100,000 Trollocs were killed and at Tarwin's Gap several hundred thousand more were slain.  That isn't that bad especially when you have two years worth of maturing Trollocs entering the force to make up for those killed at the Gap.

 

My only question would then be the starting pop base of the Trolloc hordes and their rate of replacement.

 

Of course, the BBWBA suggests they reproduce like rabbits *and* are pretty much fully grown in a couple of years.

To have fought the Ten Nations, Aiel and the Sharans at the same time I'd think they would have needed to put about 5 million in the field and I don't see why they wouldn't have that number available now.

 

Actually, the BBWBA - not to mention Mat's memory - suggests the Westlands were outnumbered during most military engagements, and that they won through vastly superior tactical ability.

 

They also, despite being portrayed in this general Euro Medieval/Renaissance type military, had very, very large, almost steppe horsepeople large, numbers of horse archers. One needs only look at the many many times the Turks or the Mongols or someone else massacred larger, slower armies.

 

Finally, they had qualitative advantages in weaponry - in addition to recurve horsebows, they had longbows and crossbows and pikes, whose great reach canceled to an extent the physical discrepancies between the human and Trolloc form. These Light-fearing qualitative advantages did not really exist during the First War, where pretty much everyone had shocklances.

 

For that reason, I wouldn't be surprised if they had up to *10* million during the TW. Yet, and I obviously can't look into the minds of Elan Morin or Barid Bel (the only remaining decent Shadow general), if they had so many in the present, why not crush the Wetlands like an egg, and fight out the 11 remaining clans to a stalemate?

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I'm disputing it. Rand only killed half the Trollocs at Tarwin's gap. He unnerved the remainder enough that they routed when the Shienarans charged. The Two Rivers had maybe 10,000 Trollocs in it, that's chump change. So at Tear 100,000 Trollocs were killed and at Tarwin's Gap several hundred thousand more were slain.  That isn't that bad especially when you have two years worth of maturing Trollocs entering the force to make up for those killed at the Gap.

 

Good call. I guess he didn't kill them all. My point still stands, though. There are plenty of Trollocs out there -- the Shadow might have as much as a bloody nose right now. That's it, tops.

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(6) Masema had a "source" from within Rand's group that told her about Semi's capture.  Do we already know who this is?  Or does this still need to be revealed?  Cadsuane maybe?

 

 

not cads.  we know that eliza (?sp) is BA.  we see that at the cleansing when she thinks something like "how can the great lord kill the DR if he dies before TG"

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Do we already know who this is?  Or does this still need to be revealed?  Cadsuane maybe?

 

No  :P

 

That much I know.

 

The woman in Rand's group is Elza ( I think that's her name). She's the confirmed Black Sister that Verin used compulsion on now she has to "see that the DR makes it to the last battle"

 

***EDIT*** Missed the last posts on the previous page. But whether or not she was with the group at the farmhouse I'm sure she would have found out sooner or later and been able to report back.

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I highly doubt she would have found out, considering how careful Rand and Co. have been about keeping a low profile.  I think the person who reported would have had to be there during the incident.

 

BTW, I don't think it was Cadsuane like I implied in my earlier post, but I don't think the informant was Elza either.  She wasn't there.  The Informant must be Matt Damon.

 

 

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On Westeros.org there is an excellent line by line summary of the prologue.

This summary provides every bit of key dialogue,action,characters' thoughts and observations,and every minute detail someone could have missed.

I highly recommend checking it out!;D

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On a different topic from the prologue, did anyone else take notice of Mesaana's dress?

 

"Mesaana seated herself. She had chin-length dark hair and watery blue eyes. Her floor-length white dress bore no embroidery, and she wore no jewelry. A scholar to the core. Sometimes Graendal thought Mesaana had gone over to the Shadow because it offered a more interesting opportunity for research.", [brandon Sanderson, What the Storm Means: The Prologue to The Gathering Storm]

...

"Mesaana cut in, stepping forward, plain dress brushing the mirror-bright black marble floor.", [brandon Sanderson, What the Storm Means: The Prologue to The Gathering Storm]

 

Immediately, my mind jumped to a novice dress!  I know people have gone on and on speculating about this sister or that for mesaana, but could she simply be posing as a novice?  I mean, before coming to this meeting, she likely would not take the time to change and the dress described seems to match a novice white.  It would make it much easier than posing as a sister and having to learn all of her intricate histories.

 

Did this sections strike anyone else?

 

The problem with it being either a novice or accepted is that RJ stated that prior to CoT there are many clues to Mesaana's identity--enough that he thought we could figure it out. And that we had actively seen Mesaana's alter ego.

 

No novice or Accepted in the Tower is singled out in any way that could be suggestive.

 

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Mesaana's certainly not a novice or accepted. Why? Well, she wouldn't be in a position of influence if she was! If her only influence in the Tower would have been ordering Alviarin around, she wouldn't have to stay in the Tower all the time and pose as anyone at all!

Mesaana is posing as a full Aes Sedai and probably even as a Black Ajah sister. That must be, because she discovered Alviarin to be the head of the Black Ajah. I doubt Ishy told her that. I stick to Danelle being Mesaana, though she hasn't been exposed as BA.

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Mesaana is posing as a full Aes Sedai and probably even as a Black Ajah sister. That must be, because she discovered Alviarin to be the head of the Black Ajah. I doubt Ishy told her that. I stick to Danelle being Mesaana, though she hasn't been exposed as BA.

 

Wouldn't it be great for Pereva to catch Mesaana in her net looking for BA. That fits with prior story lines and would make her the fourth Forsaken captured.

 

With all that Mesaana has been through and as weak a personality as she seems to have, I can see her breaking and giving Pereva and company everything. This may happen after Egwene unites the WT.

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Mesaana is posing as a full Aes Sedai and probably even as a Black Ajah sister. That must be, because she discovered Alviarin to be the head of the Black Ajah. I doubt Ishy told her that. I stick to Danelle being Mesaana, though she hasn't been exposed as BA.

 

Wouldn't it be great for Pereva to catch Mesaana in her net looking for BA. That fits with prior story lines and would make her the fourth Forsaken captured.

 

With all that Mesaana has been through and as weak a personality as she seems to have, I can see her breaking and giving Pereva and company everything. This may happen after Egwene unites the WT.

While ironic, I'd much rather have the Seanchan or Egwene bring her down.

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Mesaana is posing as a full Aes Sedai and probably even as a Black Ajah sister. That must be, because she discovered Alviarin to be the head of the Black Ajah. I doubt Ishy told her that. I stick to Danelle being Mesaana, though she hasn't been exposed as BA.

 

Wouldn't it be great for Pereva to catch Mesaana in her net looking for BA. That fits with prior story lines and would make her the fourth Forsaken captured.

 

With all that Mesaana has been through and as weak a personality as she seems to have, I can see her breaking and giving Pereva and company everything. This may happen after Egwene unites the WT.

While ironic, I'd much rather have the Seanchan or Egwene bring her down.

 

It would, however, feel amazing to see Seaine, Pevara & Co. use Talene's summons to the Council take Alviarin, and in doing so, expose the whole BA in one fell swoop.

 

That would be one of the best feelings in the series because it would be a major victory for the Light; it would be absolutely justified based on previous writing, and not some deus ex for Our Guys; and Pevara (along with Tarna I guess) is a stellar example of *why* the Red Ajah was founded in the first place and continues to be the most numerous Ajah - because what they were doing *was* really important until two years ago, and because they really *do* hate the Shadow, maybe more than anyone.

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also, i dont know how you guys who started reading this series right away and could stand the wait! i have started the books a bit after KOD came out i think and have read it 4-5 times. im going crazy waiting for one book but you guys who have waited for like all of em, i respect you immensely

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Ziggdiezan, I thought about the Towers of Midnight referring to Moridin's black towers too, but that has pretty much been debunked.  You can check out more about the Towers of Midnight theories and discussion in the Towers of Midnight Spoilers thread.

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K, two things.

Mesaana is probably Danelle, Danelle is Brown, browns get lost in thought all the time it could be possible

I think it would be possible for the Reds with Asha'Man to take down the black at Talene's summons(I highly doubt Taim will let his pets go), I don't think it will happen this way but it's possible

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K, two things.

Mesaana is probably Danelle, Danelle is Brown, browns get lost in thought all the time it could be possible

I think it would be possible for the Reds with Asha'Man to take down the black at Talene's summons(I highly doubt Taim will let his pets go), I don't think it will happen this way but it's possible

That would be pretty awesome, but I have a feeling that Egwene will get involved somehow before the Black Ajah gets outed in a big way.

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K, two things.

Mesaana is probably Danelle, Danelle is Brown, browns get lost in thought all the time it could be possible

I think it would be possible for the Reds with Asha'Man to take down the black at Talene's summons(I highly doubt Taim will let his pets go), I don't think it will happen this way but it's possible

That would be pretty awesome, but I have a feeling that Egwene will get involved somehow before the Black Ajah gets outed in a big way.

 

At this point, I feel like either Doesine will let Eggs in on the secret or else Tarna will have become so fed up with Elaida that she makes an alliance with Egwene. I can't see the SAS managing to take down the Tower until Egwene gets the support of *some* major faction within the Tower already, if not the majority of sisters within it, who're pretty damn steamed at Elaida McCrazypants.

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I'm pretty certain that Egwene will be imprisoned after her dinner with Elaida. She'll verbally slap Elaida around, robbing her of her blind idea that she is turning Egwene into a polite little novice, and thus be arrested.

 

Then the Seanchan attack will come--Pevara and the like are often in the same basements, and that's where they'll meet. Egwene will notice the oddity of them being down there and either figure it out or they'll come to confide in her.

 

It'll happen over time--possibly not until well into Towers of Midnight--but it'll be Egwene's knowledge of Alviarin's letter that keys Pevara and the others into the fact that she's black, or even top of the black, which will be what brings all of this out into the open.

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Less than 3 weeks was the period I could stay away from a WoT forum after Wotmania closed down. So here I am.

 

I have read the prologue and I am super excited. I will comment on the theories that can arise from it, but first I will comment on Sanderson's style. I have read the Mistborn trilogy, and he is one of those writers who is not afraid to kill characters. Will he do that in WoT? (still following RJ's notes of course). I mean, only in the prologue you have two characters killed. One a minor secondary character (Mishima), the other a big secondary character (The Prophet). I had expected Perrin to do it, since he seemed determined after the Aram incident, but I didn't expect it to happen so soon. (That is if he is going to stay dead ;)). Who else believes that in these final books, besides the characters RJ intended to kill, a bunch more will also go meet Jack o' Shadows?

 

Now on to theorizing. It is quite possible that Demandred had been pulling the Prophet's strings from the beginning, though I don't think that is the rule he was talking about. It is also quite possible it was Morridin who came into his dreams, since he always liked to do that.

I also thought that Demandred might be posing as King Roedran. But I don't think that is the case. Roedran used the Band to gather support among the nobles and strengthen his rule. Talmanes also said that Roedran is reading that book about war that Mat knows. Well, Demandred is good at war, so he really doesn't need to read a book about it. Furthermore, he could use Compulsion to sway nobles, so he wouldn't need a foreign army. And third point, Murandy is one of the weakest countries in Randland, so his forces would not be able to cause more than just some chaos.

Demandred isn't with the Borderlanders either. So far, they haven't caused any chaos, and it is clear that Demandred has been serving the DO in that aspect well. Also, what the Borderlands rulers did strengthened their alliance, not weakened it, which would be more in the Shadow's advantage.

I believe that RJ confirmed that Demandred is not posing as Mazrim Taim, not to mention there was a Forsaken in the Black Tower before (2 Forsaken in the same place is a bit redundant).

At one point, Sammael was thinking that events in the south looked like Demandred's doing. Since Sammael was in Ilian, the only thing south of that are the Sea Folk, but they are ruled by women, and we already know what happened with their rulers.

Is it possible that Demandred went as far as Shara? Imagine an army of Sharans appearing in Randland out of nowhere. That would cause somebody a shock. Another shock would be if Demandred has taken control of one of the Aiel clans.

Whatever his case is, right now we are all as clueless as Graendal is. :)

 

On to the Trolloc attack on the Seanchan. Two thoughts come in mind: the one posing as Sammael, or Demandred. The first one might be more likely in terms of motive; somebody who doesn't care about what Moridin is doing, and just wants to cause trouble. Still, the motive is unclear, because what would that person have to do with the Seanchan. Now what if it was Moridin, or Demandred? An army of Trollocs so close to Ebou Dar is there with a purpose, and depending on its size, it could cause trouble with the Seanchan. Not to mention that it could put Tuon in danger, in which case Mat would find himself racing back to Ebou Dar to rescue his wife faster than you could say "goat stew". ;D

Now, how have the Trollocs gotten there in the first place? Well, Shadowspawn cannot go through gateways, so that's out. The number one way are the Ways. Somebody mentioned that there are still some doors left on the Shadow Coast that are still open and unguarded. I could see the Trollocs marching from there to Ebou Dar undetected. Or they could have marched all the way from the Blight. Either way, if they are under a Forsaken's control, then it has to be Demandred because only he could have pulled it off. This also suggests that there are other Trolloc armies out there. One maybe on its way to Tanchico.

 

Ok folks, if you had the patience to read through my ramblings, I thank you, and I welcome you to reply with your opinions.

 

 

 

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