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A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY
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Ask A Simple Question, Get a Simple Answer (No AMoL Spoilers)

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you see that in the real world too.  there's a certain area in NY that consistently put out good basketball players.  ohio and texas consistently have some of the best football players in the country.  so in randland, the two rivers puts an emphasis on archery.  and it makes sense genetically, since there's such isolation, that the natural abilities needed for archery would continue to carry on down the bloodlines.

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but there are farmers in other areas of randland. What makes these ones special?

It's a culture that has been formed and shaped through extreme isolation in a bubble. They are unique. 

 

I think the cultural bubble would explain the development of the longbow being isolated to the Two Rivers.  I don't think it explains why they are all excellent marksman/significantly better than other archers.  Having a unique design of bow doesn't automatically them better shots, it just makes them capable of shooting further.  Using their longbows to fend of wolves and participate in feast day competitions will be an experience common to most farmers in mountainous areas in Randland.  This wouldn't be sufficient to make them superior to trained archers.  The only thing I can think of is that everyone in Randland comments on their skill purely because they can shoot further while still hitting a target, which is really down to their bows.

 

 

I just assume they practice frequently. Probably in competitions. As a cultural thing.

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I just assume they practice frequently. Probably in competitions. As a cultural thing.

Yeah, I get that, but they train more than actual archers in armies?  More than the Aiel with their shortbows?  There are no other groups of farmers in the world who have frequent competitions and need to look after their sheep?

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Been bugging me for ages - Who killed the old scholar/inventor type guy (can't remember his name)  who discovered something very important and was about to tell Rand (via a note/letter) - when he was found dead - and what was he going to tell him ?????

 

Driving me crazy !!

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Been bugging me for ages - Who killed the old scholar/inventor type guy (can't remember his name)  who discovered something very important and was about to tell Rand (via a note/letter) - when he was found dead - and what was he going to tell him ?????

 

Driving me crazy !!

I think it was the gholam. He was found torn to pieces in his room. Obviously someone in the School is a DF and when Rand began regular visits to Herid, they began watching/following his research. When he got too close to an answer, some forsaken sent the gholam to kill him.

Edited by Whizbang

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I just assume they practice frequently. Probably in competitions. As a cultural thing.

Yeah, I get that, but they train more than actual archers in armies?  More than the Aiel with their shortbows?  There are no other groups of farmers in the world who have frequent competitions and need to look after their sheep?

 

Farmers in other areas of Randland tend to live near enough to cities that wolves and wild animals would stay away for the most part. Being able to shoot well, with a bow, is a useful tool, but in the 2Rivers, where there are more wild animals and fewer people, it becomes a necessary skill. Add that to the two rivers longbow, which probably requires extraordinary strength to even let it loose at all, and the precision is not markmanship per se, just a developed skill or affinity.

The two rivers is descended from Manetheren stock, which is nothing if not stubborn.

The only thing that makes two rivers archery better than professional archery would be the strength of the bow and the culture surrounding it; a well trained army would be able to destroy the two rivers, but certainly at a cost.

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what was the answer though  & to what ????

Rand asked Herid Fel to work on a couple of problems, essentially the same questions he asked the Finns. How to win the Last Battle and how to clense Saidin. Rand told Herid Fel the answers he got from the Finns. Fel said the principals were sound. The two talked a lot off-screen and Rand was able to piece together how to clense saidin.

 

We only have hints as to the answer for the first question, though. Herid Fel left a note saying something like "Have to clear away the rubble", which Min has been working on interpreting. She and Rand believe it means destroying the seals.

 

Re: Archery

It has been said in this series (and many other places) that Archery takes years and years to master. You pretty much have to grow up with it to become truly good. Armies train archers to shoot in unison. You don't have to be especially good, only able to hit the broad side of a field of battle. The idea is that it is hard to dodge thousands of arrows coming at you at once. Two Rivers arhcers are different. They can do the battle archery, yes. But when things get close, they are still effective. They can shoot with accuracy into a melee.

 

Two Rivers may not be different than many other isolated farming communities in their reliance on archery, but it does have two things going for it. 1) Pretty much the entire male population volunteered into an army at once. 2) The Long Bow.

Edited by Whizbang

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Rand asked Herid Fel to work on a couple of problems, essentially the same questions he asked the Finns. How to win the Last Battle and how to clense Saidin. Rand told Herid Fel the answers he got from the Finns. Fel said the principals were sound. The two talked a lot off-screen and Rand was able to piece together how to clense saidin.

 

We only have hints as to the answer for the first question, though. Herid Fel left a note saying something like "Have to clear away the rubble", which Min has been working on interpreting. She and Rand believe it means destroying the seals.

 

 

 Just to go a bit further here is what Herid Fel had to say on the two topics.

 

In relation to cleansing Saidin:

 

TPoD Ch. 14

  Rand picked up Taim’s missive, folded the page, and thrust it into his coat pocket. One in fifty mad already, and more to come. Was Morr next? Dashiva was surely close. Hopwil’s stares took on a new meaning, and even Narishma’s habitual quiet. Madness did not always mean screaming about spiders. He had asked once, warily, where he knew the answers would be true, how to cleanse the taint from saidin. And got a riddle for answer. Herid Fel had claimed the riddle stated "sound principles, in both high philosophy and natural philosophy," but he had not seen any way to apply it to the problem at hand. Had Fel been killed because he might have puzzled out the riddle? Rand had a hint at the answer, or thought he might, a guess that could be disastrously wrong. Hints and riddles were not answers, yet he had to do something. If the taint was not cleansed somehow, Tarmon Gai’don might find a world already ruined by madmen. What had to be done, had to be done.

 

 

For the seals, here is where received more hints that this wasn't actually the "Last Battle". Merely the one for this turnng.

 

LoC Ch. 18

Still, it has to be sealed up again by somebody. The Wheel, you see."

   "I don’t see... " Rand trailed off.

   "Yes, you do. You’d make a good student." Snatching his pipe out, Herid drew a circle in the air with the stem. "The Wheel of Time. Ages come and go and come again as the Wheel turns. All the catechism." Suddenly he stabbed a point on that imaginary wheel. "Here the Dark One’s prison is whole. Here, they drilled a hole in it, and sealed it up again." He moved the bit of the pipe along the arc he had drawn. "Here we are. The seal’s weakening. But that doesn’t matter, of course." The pipestem completed the circle. "When the Wheel turns back to here, back to where they drilled the hole in the first place, the Dark One’s prison has to be whole again."

   "Why? Maybe the next time they’ll drill through the patch. Maybe that’s how they could do it the last time – drill into what the Creator made, I mean – maybe they drilled the Bore through a patch and we just don’t know."

   Herid shook his head. For a moment he stared at his pipe, once more realizing it was unlit, and Rand thought he might have to recall him again, but instead Herid blinked and went on. "Someone had to make it sometime. For the first time, that is. Unless you think the Creator made the Dark One’s prison with a hole and patch to begin." His eyebrows waggled at the suggestion. "No, it was whole in the beginning, and I think it will be whole again when the Third Age comes once more. Hmmm. I wonder if theycalled it the Third Age?" He hastily dipped a pen and scribbled a note in the margins of an open book. "Umph. No matter now. I’m not saying the Dragon Reborn will be the one to make it whole, not in this Age necessarily anyway, but it must be so before the Third Age comes again, and enough time passed since it was made whole – an Age, at least – that no one remembers the Dark One or his prison. No one remembers. Um. I wonder. . ." He peered at his notes and scratched his head, then seemed startled to find he used the hand holding the pen. There was a smudge of ink in his hair. "Any Age where seals weaken must remember the Dark One eventually, because they will have to face him and wall him up again." Sticking his pipe back between his teeth, he tried to make another note without dipping the pen.

   "Unless the Dark One breaks free," Rand said quietly. "To break the Wheel of Time, and remake Time and the world in his own image."

   "There is that." Herid shrugged, frowning at the pen. Finally he thought of the inkpot. "I don’t suppose there’s much you or I can do about it. Why don’t you come study here with me? I don’t suppose Tarmon Gai’don will happen tomorrow, and it would be as good a use of your time as – "

   "Is there any reason you can think of to break the seals?"

   Herid’s eyebrows shot up. "Break the seals? Break the seals? Why would anyone but a madman want to do that? Can they even be broken? I seem to remember reading somewhere they can’t, but I don’t recall now that it said why. What made you think of a thing like that?"

   "I don’t know," Rand sighed. In the back of his head Lews Therin was chanting. Break the seals. Break the seals, and end it. Let me die forever.

 

 

& finally:

 

LoC Ch. 50 

 

It did not help a great deal with learning what Fel had puzzled out about the Seals on the Dark One’s prison or the Last Battle.

   The next day brought a note crammed onto a torn-off corner of parchment.

 

   Belief and order give strength. Have to clear rubble before you can build. Will explain when see you next. Do not bring girl. Too pretty.

   Fel

 

 

 Clearly he was on to something before he was murdered.

Edited by Suttree

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How does a shielded character break through a shield.  I get that a strong channeler can push against a shield and shatter it (if held by a weaker channeler), or that a shield can be unknotted if is tied off, but what does the shielded channeler use to do the pushing or unknotting?  They can't use saidin/saidar as they can't reach it, but how can they feel the knots if they aren't connected to the source?

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How does a shielded character break through a shield.  I get that a strong channeler can push against a shield and shatter it (if held by a weaker channeler), or that a shield can be unknotted if is tied off, but what does the shielded channeler use to do the pushing or unknotting?  They can't use saidin/saidar as they can't reach it, but how can they feel the knots if they aren't connected to the source?

 

Well when Nyn had just healed Logain she shields him and from her point of view she describes feeling like a growing pressure or presence behind that shield, my guess and this is only a guess is that it is the ability to channel itself which is used to break a shield, after all a channeler is always connected to the Source it is just that when shielded they are prevented from actually drawing anything though that connection so my guess is that they use the connection itself, like a spiritual muscle to break a shield.

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How does a shielded character break through a shield.  I get that a strong channeler can push against a shield and shatter it (if held by a weaker channeler), or that a shield can be unknotted if is tied off, but what does the shielded channeler use to do the pushing or unknotting?

They have a psychic appendage, more or less. For lack of a better term, this is their "will" exerting itself psychically. This is the same will that allows them to manipulate weaves at all. Connecting with the source does nothing if you cannot then shape/move the flows.

 

 

They can't use saidin/saidar as they can't reach it, but how can they feel the knots if they aren't connected to the source?

They can still see/sense the weaves. Blocking the connection does nothing to block their sensitivity to the source. If you think back to the time Rand was in the box, he could see the shield all the time, even without stretching out his will to touch it. When he did reach out to touch it, he could feel the soft points, yes, but he could definitely sense the shield without reaching out for the source.

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I look at it this way, look at a garden hose, the hose itself is always there but sometimes you turn it on and then water will flow through the hose, and then you have the neighbors little shit of a kid who comes and tie a knot on the hose and that would be like a shield, however the hose is still there even when it is not in use. Basically channelers in WoT have a connection to the Source and that is always there, unless something tragic happens to them, and this is what they use to shape weaves and see others channel and so on, there is allot of things a channeler can do even when not actively channeling. I mean if they where only connected to the Source when actively channeling then an a'dam for example would not be very useful for then they could take it right off when not channeling. Channelers are a little different from mundanes when when not using their powers.

 

Channelers can even feel this appendix that Whizbang so eloquently put it, if a weave get cut, fails or is interrupted they feel a recoil which can be shocking or painful, damage to their connection is extremely painful and several places it is mentioned a channeler feeling their connection, it is like if they have a non physical part of their bodies which makes them what they are.

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About breaking a shield, Lews Therin teaches the saidin way to Rand sometime after Elaida's embassy left Cairhien.  Lord of Chaos; do not remember exact chapter.

The saidar way is told in some chapter of Winter's Heart.  Nynaeve teaching the Sea Folk Windfinders various chanelling things.

 

 

Back to the Aiel Wise Ones and Maidens knowing about Min's ability; the first time the Maidens find out seems to be after the Wise Ones question Min.

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min saw a vision above melaine, that she would have twins "like mirrors". she accidentally said this out loud, and when melaine, who had just discovered that day she was preggers, asked how she knew, min was forced to explain. then melaine went off telling the other WO's she was carrying twins, and they got all excited, and wanted to know how she knew, so min had to explain, and then she became an honorary wise one.

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It seems Min purposely told the Viewing.

And the explanation seems to have been toward mainly Melaine.  Melaine I guess told both the Viewing and the explanation.

The other Wise Ones I guess asked about the details about the ability.

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min saw a vision above melaine, that she would have twins "like mirrors". she accidentally said this out loud, and when melaine, who had just discovered that day she was preggers, asked how she knew, min was forced to explain. then melaine went off telling the other WO's she was carrying twins, and they got all excited, and wanted to know how she knew, so min had to explain, and then she became an honorary wise one.

During the scene where this occurs, Min only reveals her ability because Rand assures her Melaine will keep a promise not to tell anyone else.

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min saw a vision above melaine, that she would have twins "like mirrors". she accidentally said this out loud, and when melaine, who had just discovered that day she was preggers, asked how she knew, min was forced to explain. then melaine went off telling the other WO's she was carrying twins, and they got all excited, and wanted to know how she knew, so min had to explain, and then she became an honorary wise one.

During the scene where this occurs, Min only reveals her ability because Rand assures her Melaine will keep a promise not to tell anyone else.

 

Like I said before, I don't remember the scene too exactly. But if you describe it accurately, then the fault was in Rand's poor judgement of Melaine, not with Melaine breaking a promise. Or perhaps Min's failure to secure the promise. Rand says "You can trust her promise to keep her word." Min says "Ok!" and then doesn't ask for the promise.

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Exact wording from the scene::

"You will have two daughters," Min murmured. "Twins like mirrors."

If Melaine had been unsurprised before, she made up for it now. Her eyes went wide, and she gave a start that nearly lifted her from the floor. "How could you ...?"she began incredulously then stopped to gather herself. Even so, she went on in a breathless voice. "I myself was uncertain I was with child until this morning. How could you know?"

Min did get up then, giving a look he knew all too well. It was his fault for some reason. She was not entirely without flaws, if small ones. Fussing with her coat, she looked everywhere except at Melaine, and when her gaze fell on him again, it was a variation of the first look. He had gotten her into this; it was up to him to get her out.

"It is all right, Min," he said. "She's a Wise One, and I expect she knows things that would curl your hair." Except that already was curly. How did women do that, anyway? "I am sure she will promise to keep your secret, and you can trust her promise." Melaine almost stumbled over her tongue promising.

Just the same, Rand received another look before Min sat down beside Melaine. Reproachful, maybe. How did she expect him to get her out of it? Melaine would not forget because he asked, but she would keep a promise, and a secret. She had kept enough from him.

For all her reluctance, once Min began she gave a much fuller explanation than she had ever given him at one time, perhaps helped by the other woman's constant questions, and Melaine's changing attitude as well. It was as if Melaine began to feel that Min's ability made her an equal of sorts, not at all a wetlander.

"It is remarkable," Melaine said at last. "Like interpreting the dream without dreaming. Two you say? Both girls? Bael will be so pleased. Dorindha has given him three sons, but we both know he would like a daughter." Min blinked and gave her head a hard shake. Of course; she could not know about sister-wives.

Lord of Chaos Chapter 41.

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She becomes aware in the 11th book.  Before that scene, she had suspicions.

Do not remember when the suspicions start.  She sent others to spy on him; all but the last one sent were killed by him.  Those killings heightened her suspicions.

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I think the suspicions that he he is a DF only start in KoD when she decides to have him followed.  Prior to that she just didn't like him that much as his character showed after initially getting into her good graces through saving her life.

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You'd think the Darkfriends would be better at hiding their true personalities.

 

I mean, it's established that anyone can be a darkfriend, yet all the notable ones are absolute jerks even prior to the reveal. The only ones I recall who weren't were the Shienarian one in TGH and Mat's Aiel girlfriend

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Does the continued... prolonged... boring... endless... repetitive... nausea inducing...tooth grindingly irritating humiliation of the Aes Sedai EVER... EVER end? How long has it been going on now, at least 4 books! In my weaker moments, it kinda makes me wanna quit the series. it really does

Edited by EmperorAllspice

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You'd think the Darkfriends would be better at hiding their true personalities.

 

I mean, it's established that anyone can be a darkfriend, yet all the notable ones are absolute jerks even prior to the reveal. The only ones I recall who weren't were the Shienarian one in TGH and Mat's Aiel girlfriend

Jaichim Carridin, Inquisitor of the Hand of Light was a surprise. There were plenty of Whitecloaks who were not DF's but were real jerks (like Asunawa and Eamon Valda) and DF's tended to be those who sought power and were generally evil to begin with.

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