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A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

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Even if you were a very unpleasent, cruel and greedy person, would it be worth the cost to become a darkfriend?

Many darkfriends have suffered terrible fates, not just in the hands of the lightsided charkters.

Many have been hurt, tortured and hummiliated by other darkfriends, forsaken or the dark one himself.

For example a much larger percentage of the black sisters have suffered terrible fates than "light" sisters have.

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I liked it better in the beginning of the series when Lan said something to the effect of "every man dies, except for darkfriends and only a fool would pay that price". Also, wasn't their a girl with a magical knife in the first book? I think the series started to paint darkfriends as people who made a Faustian bargain for beauty, longevity, power, etc.. It would have been really good if they could have kept going with that line of thought. But as the series progressed, only Forsaken really seem to have gotten anything out of the deal.

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In their mind, yes, because they were promised great rewards. But it truth, no, because they don't realize the aim of the Dark One is to unravel the Pattern and destroy the world, so they won't get any of the things they were promised if he succeeds.

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Of course not. One of the most implausible things in the series is the presence of so many Darkfriends when they get so little out if it for all the risks and moral damnation they take.

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Or perhaps we simply do not know enough of what they are promised...

 

In the same way that some people have religion to ground them and to provide direction, a certainty of what will come and the order of things or whatever, perhaps in Randland we have people who embrace the DO seeking those same things (after all there are no religions mentioned in the series, even the 'Creator' is more of an abstract belief that something good created everything, yet there is no references to any beliefs about that creator, such as its personality, or that he/she/it has established rules by which humans are to exist or that he/she/it protects or rewards those who abide by those rules or punishes those who do not, or that there is some 'great plan' or anything else).

 

Other dark friends may not be interested in this religious aspect but rather the rewards they were promised such as eternal life, dominion, power and so forth. While they must submit to those above them they rule over (to an extent) those below them, therefore its presumable that enough of them have been given such rewards of influence and power that the others still think it possible that if they try that little bit harder they too might rise.

 

For some it may well have been a mistake, something they thought had no real meaning (we are told that some people do not even believe there IS a dark one) a joke or something to pass the time, until they suddenly realised that what they had done had ensnared them and they found themselves with no way out.

 

Finally those that think the DO will win sooner or later, so its best to be on the winning side hoping the DO rewards (or at least doesn't kill) his 'faithful'.

Edited by Stitch
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I got the sense that most of them didn't know what they were getting in to, but once they took the oaths, they realized they were in over their heads.

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Toy sounds like he's got the right idea. The vast majority were most likely lured in with false promises of glory and what not, and were wtuck after the oaths.

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Darkfriends in Rand's time, what with the influence of the DO being what it is, seems plausible, but- let's say that 1000 years ago a sister swore herself to the Black Ajah. Is she really hoping for eternal life? Don't see it happening. The deeds are not there to be done, the service required for the promise of eternal life just isn't around.

 

If someone went in Hawkwings time to Shayol Ghul- would they be able to communicate with the DO? Assuming the seals were strong? Could the DO really have promised anyone anything during these times? Would DF's not realise in 3000 years that none of them were 'living forever'? Seems like the novelty would wear thin.

 

I'm chalking off Darkfriend faith as similar to the faith in the Creator. Present without convincing reason.

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Maybe he gives a similar promise to the ones we hear in many religions- you will, after the DO has won, be resurrected when he remakes the world in his image, and then receive all of what was promised. They would likely believe it. They do call him the "Lord of the Grave," after all.

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Even if you were a very unpleasent, cruel and greedy person, would it be worth the cost to become a darkfriend?

Many darkfriends have suffered terrible fates, not just in the hands of the lightsided charkters.

Many have been hurt, tortured and hummiliated by other darkfriends, forsaken or the dark one himself.

For example a much larger percentage of the black sisters have suffered terrible fates than "light" sisters have.

 

I think they don't realise when they sign up for it that doing so is likely to result in them being hurt, tortured and humiliated. Also the promise of ever-lasting life can make otherwise intelligent people do the stupidest things (just look at religions on earth).

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I think sheriam is telling here too. For a long time being q darkfriend would be like joining a secret society. A bit of naughty fun and a few social benefits. The price of it only became apparent with tg. Before that it would have just meant the odd ritual. Now it means essential slavery.

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But reading the 13th Depository, we can see the subversion, murders and atrocities committed by black sisters prior to the current setting.

Unless I'm mistaken and such actions occured only (mostly) when Ishamael was on the prowl? I know theres reference to the BA murdering an Amyrlin and Ishamael murdered the Head of the Black Ajah because of it? - That doesn't seem like 'dabbling in the dark arts' naughtiness. Sorry if I'm confusing, I may definately be mistaken here.

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Let's make a list of Darkfriends that, thus far, seem to have come out ahead in the bargain:

 

Mili Skane

Daved Hanlon

Demandred

Moridin

 

I'm not counting Verin. She was no true darkfriend even if she was a member of the Black Ajah.

 

Can anyone think of any other ones? Mostly they die horribly after suffering horribly.

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Let's make a list of Darkfriends that, thus far, seem to have come out ahead in the bargain:

 

Mili Skane

Daved Hanlon

Demandred

Moridin

 

I'm not counting Verin. She was no true darkfriend even if she was a member of the Black Ajah.

 

Can anyone think of any other ones? Mostly they die horribly after suffering horribly.

 

Well you could argue that all of the Forsaken came out ahead even the ones who have since died. Since they all got a second shot of life complete with their memories which is more than they would have gotten if they had stayed true to the light. In this way if you can get as high up as a forsaken turning dark offers real, tangible benefits. But to be an ordinary, run-of-the-mill darkfriend involves high risk for very little in way of real return.

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Let's make a list of Darkfriends that, thus far, seem to have come out ahead in the bargain:

 

Mili Skane

Daved Hanlon

Demandred

Moridin

 

I'm not counting Verin. She was no true darkfriend even if she was a member of the Black Ajah.

 

Can anyone think of any other ones? Mostly they die horribly after suffering horribly.

 

Alviarin is still alive and is marked as Shaidar Haran's pet, so she doesn't have it too bad.

Weiramon was allowed to walk away after being outed as a Darkfriend, so I'd say he's done well.

Taim, of course, is at the top of his game.

 

But I imagine that life before the Dragon Reborn was not so dangerous for Darkfriends. :wink:

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Darkfriends in Rand's time, what with the influence of the DO being what it is, seems plausible, but- let's say that 1000 years ago a sister swore herself to the Black Ajah. Is she really hoping for eternal life? Don't see it happening. The deeds are not there to be done, the service required for the promise of eternal life just isn't around.

From what I understand, the Shadow has always had a certain influence on the world, if only through Ishy's half-bound state that allowed him to be free every once in a while. Look at the Trolloc wars, for example. Many people thought the Shadow would win then. Joining the winning side sounds like strong motivation.

 

But again, as I said and others said as well, I think many of these people got lured with false promises.

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Didn't Verin say she was sort of forced to join BA? Join or Die kinda deal? That could explain the large amount of Black Ajah members...

 

 

Other darkfriends? I dunno. As some people said, maybe they did it as a 'game' for shits and giggles, and since karma is a bitch, that little 'game' bit them back when the Dragon was actually reborn and the war started.

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Even if you were a very unpleasent, cruel and greedy person, would it be worth the cost to become a darkfriend?

Many darkfriends have suffered terrible fates, not just in the hands of the lightsided charkters.

Many have been hurt, tortured and hummiliated by other darkfriends, forsaken or the dark one himself.

For example a much larger percentage of the black sisters have suffered terrible fates than "light" sisters have.

To an normal person who had no worth to the DO, no it would not.....But to a rich person, or someone who had alot of influence or had great military experience and could help leader the Shadow's Army to victory, the DO would probably reward their efforts.

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^Or so they would think.

 

 

However, what about that high-up darkfriend in Altara, who's a beggar? Can't remeber his name... Old... something.

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^Or so they would think.

 

 

However, what about that high-up darkfriend in Altara, who's a beggar? Can't remeber his name... Old... something.

 

A begger would bring less attention...They are amazingly effective spies.....That is why I think he was given a high position. But in many cases, military leaders and political leaders, would make better high ranking darkfriends....since they are already trained in deception and can easily avoid detection as long as they are not open in their loyalties...Mixed with their great influence, this would make them very vaulable...and from what I have seen..the Dark One is actually quite giving if his followers do their jobs.

Edited by Dagon Thyne
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To an normal person who had no worth to the DO, no it would not.....But to a rich person, or someone who had alot of influence or had great military experience and could help leader the Shadow's Army to victory, the DO would probably reward their efforts.

 

"Beggars could give orders to kings" The Darkfriends have their own hierarchy. We are specifically told at the beginning of the book that Darkfriends who are of a lower class in Light society could hold a great rank among the Darkfriends. Greater than kings even.

Edited by Awakened
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*nods* also its difficult to see if the particular individuals have come up in the world seeing as we dont know where they started from

 

Also since the forsaken revived (not so much the dragon) and more importantly the DO, things would have changed dramatically, before the only real chain on them was probably Ish and the darkspawn he sent, so up until now perhaps more darkfriends DID benefit, whereas now they find themselves forced to perform orders outside of their skills (or they find themselves taveren'ed into failure), whereas before they would have had more freedom - so for the last few thousand years they were probably not having as many bad things happen to them ((though there was probably not the same feeling of imminent reward either))

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It seems like before the forsaken got free and became involved, some darkfriends were doing pretty well for themselves: they are successful merchants (Gode), High Seats of powerful houses (Damodred), Lord Captains of the Children, High Lords of Tear, High Bloods of Seanchan, Highest of the Red Ajah, Sitters for the Hall, Commanders in the Borderlands (Ingtar).

 

In another sense, becoming a Darkfriend is a way to gain status and power that one would be able to get otherwise, like Old Cully. Instead of being just a begger, he has power.

 

Darkfriends have just had a few bad years recently, since they suddenly found themselves dropped a few rungs on the ladder.

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