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A little bit of Foreshadowing

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Not a particularly long, nor scholarly topic, just thought to bring to attention this from tGS. Which I am sure has been noted and discussed before, anyhow, I thought to bring it back up.


tGS Chapter 1: Tears from Steel


Even with saidin to provide a far more potent weapon, his first instinct was for the sword. He'd have to change that. It might get him killed someday.


Now usually, I would not take notice of this, but this is the wheel of time.


Could it be that this hesitation is the reason for his death?


Of course, the scenario would be much more complex than somebody suprising him and such, but could that reflex get him killed?


Is it just Brandon's blunt(er) way of writing? Or could it actually be a foreshadowing?



For myself, I am not sure, on the one hand, I can see the sentance as a forshadowing (although it is a little blunt for RJ, but it was Sanderson, as mentioned) however, I have no idea how the scene would play out sucessfully.



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this is an interesting quote. Could be a foreshadowing as you say. It's really hard to tell at this point.

What I find quite interesting about this quote is that it goes very much against what we've learned of Rand previously. As early as in TDR his first instinct is to use the power instead of the real sword.


“You have chosen a good campsite, young man,” she said. “I have often used it on my way to Remen. There is a small spring nearby. I trust you have no objection to my sharing it?” Her guards were already dismounting, hitching at their sword belts and loosening saddle girths.


“None,” Rand told her. Careful. Two steps brought him close enough, and he leaped into the air, spinning—Thistledown Floats on the Whirlwind—heron-mark blade carved from fire coming into his hands to take her head off before surprise could even form on her face. She was the most dangerous.


He alighted as the woman’s head rolled from the crupper of her horse. The guards yelled and clawed for their swords, screamed as they realized his blade burned. He danced among them in the forms Lan had taught him, and knew he could have killed all ten with ordinary steel, but the blade he wielded was part of him.

-TDR, Ch 36


Bashere makes this point to him in LoC

Shifting in his chair, Bashere laughed. “Do you think you’ll live long enough to equal the greatest swordsman in history?” An angry mutter came from the Andorans—feigned anger, Rand was sure—but Bashere ignored it. “You are who you are, after all.” Suddenly he moved like an uncoiling spring; the dagger drawn while shifting flashed toward Rand’s heart.


Rand did not move a muscle. Instead he seized saidin, the male half of the True Source; it took no more thought than breathing. Saidin flooded into him, carrying the Dark One’s taint, an avalanche of foul ice, a torrent of reeking molten metal. It tried to crush him, to scour him away, and he rode it like a man balancing atop a collapsing mountain. He channeled, a simple weave of Air that wrapped up the dagger and stopped it an arm’s length from his chest. Emptiness surrounded him; he floated in the middle of it, in the Void, thought and emotion distant.





With a sigh he tossed the dagger aside. “Your question,” he said politely. “Why?”


“Because you are who you are,” Bashere said plainly. “Because you—and those men you’re gathering, I suppose—are what you are.” Rand heard feet shuffling behind him; for all they tried to, the Andorans could never hide their horror at his amnesty. “You can do what you did with the dagger every time,” Bashere went on, putting his raised boot down and leaning forward, “but for any assassin to reach you, he has to get past your Aiel. And my horsemen, for that matter. Bah! If anything gets close to you, it won’t be human.”

-LoC, Ch 1


same thing in CoS:


He limped around that as fast as he could. And nearly ran into four black mailed Trollocs and a Myrddraal, inky cloak hanging unnaturally still down its back as the Fade moved. The Trollocs snarled in surprise, yet shock lasted less than a heartbeat. Hooked spears and scythe-curved swords rose; the Myrddraal’s dead-black blade was in its fist, a blade that gave wounds almost as deadly as Fain’s dagger.


Rand did not even try to draw the heron-mark sword at his side. Death in a tattered red coat, he channeled, and a sword of fire was in his hands, pulsing darkly with the throb of saidin, sweeping an eyeless head from its shoulders.

-CoS, Ch 41


It's not natural for him to revert back to the sword in tGS, especially since he only has one hand now. Perhaps one can justify it by the fact that he gets very sick when he channels but still, that's not the reason he mentions in that scene.


This discrepancy does lead me to believe that this was written by Sanderson as you suspect.

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I think the sword thing is a constant Rand-ism. It was big in tFoH, and although he got better at relying on the Power he often used it to create a blade. It would make sense he'd rely more on his sword the harder it got for him to channel.


Maybe it's a discrepancy, but I'm not sure. That's not the important bit really. Maybe the "sword" foreshadowing is Callandor? He's so focused on how that's important that he ignores the more important thing that has to be done (which causes his death somehow)?


Or it might have just been minor foreshadowing for later in the book: Rand disregards the Callandor prophecies and rejects the "sword" for the more potent CK. Doesn't really explain the "killed" part though.

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I believe that swordfighting is very important to Rand's destiny, and not for small reasons. It's very much interwoven in his entire plot. I have theorized before that he will die by the sword, and it still seems likely to me.

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Not sure if sword fighting would be a contributor to Rand's death. Though from looking through Encyclopaedia's Towers of Midnight pages, I take Rand would use a sword (or something that looks like a sword) in Tarmon Gaidon. Perhaps the sword is actually Callandor.


There might be many ways for Rand to die.

Some of them (in no particular order)::

-Rand trying to save one or more of his 3 lovers

-Fain killing him

-an unintentional hit on him from a Light sided character

-Rand overusing the One Power

-Dark One killing him

-maybe a hit from one or more Forsaken (I would guess that they all will have been eliminated by Tarmon Gaidon)


Though I would guess that Rand would die in his own body.

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