Jump to content

DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY
Cat-Sister

Why Verin didn't want Mat at the battle of Caemlyn

Mat did or did not act as Verin wished him to by not opening her letter...  

136 members have voted

  1. 1. Did Mat do as Verin wished by not opening her letter?

    • Yes, she had a reason he should not be at the battle of Caemlyn
    • No, she had the intention for him to be there to save the city...


Recommended Posts

"But she sacrificed herself!" you say? Maybe helping the DO sack Caemlyn gave her something she really wanted.

 

What she really wanted... like protecting Mat Cauthon, perhaps, a man who was at that point still fated to save the world?

 

In the game of "greater good", Mat trumps Caemlyn.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes. However, it is not something Elayne was likely to do via sheer common sense - put guards or wards on it, reasonable. Even removing the leaves so it can't be opened. Trying to blow the damn thing up? Necessary, but not the first solution that would jump to mind for most people.

 

I acknowledge that Elayne can be astonishingly stupid, but if the forsaken are about to bring a horde of trollocs through a waygate that is already known to be guarded, wouldn't the precaution of destroying or surrounding the waygate be imperative? You need Matt to swear an oath to convince her that this is a dire threat? Wouldn't Verin's letter as written delivered to Elayne be certain to convince her?

Thing is, there are many ways to render a Waygate useless. Guards on the other end, wards, taking away one or both leaves, and outright destruction. That last is the hardest, riskiest, and least repairable. Now, if there is a channeler involved, they can kill the guards, spin through the wards, even blast through a locked Waygate (as we saw Moiraine do in EotW). If you destroy the Waygate, you no longer have a Waygate. This is thus a measure of last resort. It would be quite unreasonable for Elayne to automatically jump to the measure of last resort, yet that is apparently what is required.

 

 

What issue? She has to keep His secrets until the hour of her death. If the letter is not read until after her death, then she has kept the secret. If she tells him outright, or gives him a letter and instructs him to read it before she anticipates dying, she is violating the oath.

 

But she acknowledges that her original plan is to find the oath rod and release herself from the oath. By this logic you could break the dark one oath at any time by simply swearing to yourself that you intend to go release yourself from the oaths or die trying sometime in the future. Literally taken, there would be no way to ensure Matt would open the letter in the hour of her death- in fact by her machinations she ensured he would open the letter long after her death. Could she have persuaded herself this is equivalent, given that the loophole exists by following the letter of the oath to begin with?

It doesn't matter if Mat opens the letter after she is dead - she only needs to keep the secrets until her dying hour. Once she is dead, she is under no obligation to keep them. Literally taken, there is no need for Mat to read it in the exact hour of her death, provided she takes measures to ensure he doesn't read the letter before then. Verin cannot break the oath at any time. Her actions are not breaking the oath, and her initial plan was to free herself and then return - thus she did not plan to reveal the Great Lord's secrets before the hour of her death. I'm not convinced she could do what you describe. Once she is free of the oath, she can do as she wishes. Before then she is constrained.

 

To convince him to open it, and to ensure his presence where needed if he doesn't open it.

 

Better plan- hand him the letter and say if you dont see me in 10 days please open it, its important.

How is that a better plan? It has no back up for when Mat decides not to open it.

 

 

No, they don't. Why is she even writing a letter at all, if she is trying to convince the guy she's giving it to not to open it? If she wants a delay, all she needs to do is make him promise not to open it for a few days. You've managed to make things even more complicated.

 

But you just made my point- why not just tell him to hold the letter for a few days and then open it? All her manipulation and deal making led to exactly what she was trying to avoid, Matt not opening the letter. Was Verin ever this sloppy? Given a far more direct alternative?

How am I making your point when I've pointed out that your point makes no sense? The far more direct alternative does nothing to alleviate the flaws in the plan we saw - If Mat doesn't want to open it, she can't make him. If he decideds to move on, he might be unable to contact Caemlyn, and he might decide to not open it to avoid those AS strings. As it is, the "sloppy" plan has a precaution in case he doesn't open it - Mat and his army are stuck next to Caemlyn. If a Shadowspawn army arrives, help is at hand. Your way, either Mat opens the letter or nothing - there is no back up. Verin's way, even if he doesn't open the letter all is not lost.

 

 

Nothing really to debate, pretty straight forward. Matt though, seems to wait about 30 days, not open the letter and then LEAVE the city to go find Moraine. So that pretty much put the splinter in Verin's plans completely, the fact that Matt leaves the city as soon as the oath is complete.
Which is why it was a terrible plan with an entirely foreseeable weakness. Why not just tell him to wait 10 days and then open the letter?
Because that has no easily foreseeable weaknesses, like Mat deciding not to open the letter and buggering everything up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem is she made him promise to do whatever was in the letter, after he opened it. If she had not done it, he would have opened it right after the 30day time period where he had to do what it said was up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thing is, there are many ways to render a Waygate useless. Guards on the other end, wards, taking away one or both leaves, and outright destruction. That last is the hardest, riskiest, and least repairable. Now, if there is a channeler involved, they can kill the guards, spin through the wards, even blast through a locked Waygate (as we saw Moiraine do in EotW). If you destroy the Waygate, you no longer have a Waygate. This is thus a measure of last resort. It would be quite unreasonable for Elayne to automatically jump to the measure of last resort, yet that is apparently what is required.

 

All that is true but irrelevant. Verin entrusted that information in a letter to Mat- all the same information could be either relayed directly to Elayne by having her read the letter, or via Mat exactly as planned. The letter makes it clear what the danger is and how it must be addressed- the idea that Mat (or Elayne for that matter) would accept a solution that Verin describes as inadequate is as unlikely as Mat (or Elayne) simply ignoring the warning completely.

 

 

How is that a better plan? It has no back up for when Mat decides not to open it.

 

The current plan had no back up for when Mat decided not to open it. Its a better plan because it doesn't present an option NOT to open the letter. Verin's entire scheme hinged on Mat being a man of his word. The bargain was, I will give you this way gate now, in exchange for a promise that you follow these instructions. What the instructions were doesn't really matter once he agreed to them. If you don't trust Mat to honor the oath, the whole scheme is irrelevant and likely to fail to begin with (ie- Mat just throws the letter away the second he gets what he wants). If you do trust Mat, why convolute the instructions to manipulate him into opening it? Just have the oath be to open it, nothing more. His curiosity etc is irrelevant, he will open it because he swore he would.

 

 

How am I making your point when I've pointed out that your point makes no sense? The far more direct alternative does nothing to alleviate the flaws in the plan we saw - If Mat doesn't want to open it, she can't make him.

 

Nothing in any plan short of compulsion could fix that. Again, her entire plan hinged on Mat being known to keep his promises.

 

 

If he decideds to move on, he might be unable to contact Caemlyn, and he might decide to not open it to avoid those AS strings. As it is, the "sloppy" plan has a precaution in case he doesn't open it - Mat and his army are stuck next to Caemlyn. If a Shadowspawn army arrives, help is at hand. Your way, either Mat opens the letter or nothing - there is no back up. Verin's way, even if he doesn't open the letter all is not lost.

 

If Mat can't be trusted to keep an oath to simply read a letter, how can he be trusted to keep an oath to remain with his army in Caemlyn?

Because that has no easily foreseeable weaknesses, like Mat deciding not to open the letter and buggering everything up.

 

How about the easily foreseeable weakness of Mat deciding not to live up to any of his oath and marching off from Caemlyn at his first convenience? Either you trust Mat or you don't, I don't see why you wouldn't trust him not to do something as simple as reading a letter, but you would trust him to remain with his army in a given place. That makes no sense.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem is she made him promise to do whatever was in the letter, after he opened it. If she had not done it, he would have opened it right after the 30day time period where he had to do what it said was up.

You base that on what? His desire to avoid AS entanglements is frequently stated. What is Verin's letter if not those same AS strings he is trying so hard to avoid?

 

 

Thing is, there are many ways to render a Waygate useless. Guards on the other end, wards, taking away one or both leaves, and outright destruction. That last is the hardest, riskiest, and least repairable. Now, if there is a channeler involved, they can kill the guards, spin through the wards, even blast through a locked Waygate (as we saw Moiraine do in EotW). If you destroy the Waygate, you no longer have a Waygate. This is thus a measure of last resort. It would be quite unreasonable for Elayne to automatically jump to the measure of last resort, yet that is apparently what is required.

 

All that is true but irrelevant. Verin entrusted that information in a letter to Mat- all the same information could be either relayed directly to Elayne by having her read the letter, or via Mat exactly as planned. The letter makes it clear what the danger is and how it must be addressed- the idea that Mat (or Elayne for that matter) would accept a solution that Verin describes as inadequate is as unlikely as Mat (or Elayne) simply ignoring the warning completely.

....? The point is that the letter contained instructions - destroy the Waygate being an instruction, and wouldn't necessarily be Elayne's first thought when told of an army planning to attack he via said Waygate. This was in repsonse to you stating that the letter contained no instructions, as destroying the Waygate was so obvious Elayne was sure to do it if told there was an army coming.

 

 

How is that a better plan? It has no back up for when Mat decides not to open it.

 

The current plan had no back up for when Mat decided not to open it.

Aside from the back up I mentioned, that of keeping the man and his army near to Caemlyn for thrity days.
Its a better plan because it doesn't present an option NOT to open the letter. Verin's entire scheme hinged on Mat being a man of his word. The bargain was, I will give you this way gate now, in exchange for a promise that you follow these instructions. What the instructions were doesn't really matter once he agreed to them. If you don't trust Mat to honor the oath, the whole scheme is irrelevant and likely to fail to begin with (ie- Mat just throws the letter away the second he gets what he wants). If you do trust Mat, why convolute the instructions to manipulate him into opening it? Just have the oath be to open it, nothing more. His curiosity etc is irrelevant, he will open it because he swore he would.
He only says he will if he accepts your generous offer of a Gateway. In point of fact, he didn't. He said no. Verin then had to renegotiate, giving Mat the option of not opening. It was a choice between having the option of not opening, or him not taking the letter, and thus not opening it. In order to get him to take the letter, she had to give him a way out.

 

 

How am I making your point when I've pointed out that your point makes no sense? The far more direct alternative does nothing to alleviate the flaws in the plan we saw - If Mat doesn't want to open it, she can't make him.

 

Nothing in any plan short of compulsion could fix that. Again, her entire plan hinged on Mat being known to keep his promises.

'Mat scowled at the seal for a moment, then stood up. "I pass on it."

She pursed her lips. "Matrim, you—"

"Call me Mat," he said, grabbing his hat off the top of a cushion. "And I said there's no deal. I'll be in Caemlyn in twenty days of marching, anyway." He pushed open the tent flaps, gesturing out. "I'm not going to have you tying strings around me, woman."' If Mat is a man of his word, he's still not taking the letter. If he doesn't take the letter, he can't open it. If he does, but has the option to not open it, he might open it or he might not.

 

 

If he decideds to move on, he might be unable to contact Caemlyn, and he might decide to not open it to avoid those AS strings. As it is, the "sloppy" plan has a precaution in case he doesn't open it - Mat and his army are stuck next to Caemlyn. If a Shadowspawn army arrives, help is at hand. Your way, either Mat opens the letter or nothing - there is no back up. Verin's way, even if he doesn't open the letter all is not lost.

 

If Mat can't be trusted to keep an oath to simply read a letter, how can he be trusted to keep an oath to remain with his army in Caemlyn?

Who said anything about Mat not being trustworthy?
Because that has no easily foreseeable weaknesses, like Mat deciding not to open the letter and buggering everything up.

 

How about the easily foreseeable weakness of Mat deciding not to live up to any of his oath and marching off from Caemlyn at his first convenience? Either you trust Mat or you don't, I don't see why you wouldn't trust him not to do something as simple as reading a letter, but you would trust him to remain with his army in a given place. That makes no sense.

Yes, you trust Mat to keep to his word. But he didn't agree to take the letter until the option to not open it was on the table.

 

You still haven't explained why Verin would write a letter and then manipulate Mat into not opening it. Why bother writing the letter if she doesn't want Mat to read it?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This was in repsonse to you stating that the letter contained no instructions, as destroying the Waygate was so obvious Elayne was sure to do it if told there was an army coming.

 

My point was it contained no instructions Mat would have to be compelled to follow, as opposed to being eager to follow. Why would he resist anything Verin left in that letter? Why would he do anything BUT convince Elayne to do as Verin recommended?

 

 

Aside from the back up I mentioned, that of keeping the man and his army near to Caemlyn for thrity days.

 

A backup that only exists if you trust mat to keep his word, in which case having him swear to open the letter in 10 days would suffice just as well without the risk of Mat keeping his word AND not opening the letter.

He only says he will if he accepts your generous offer of a Gateway. In point of fact, he didn't. He said no. Verin then had to renegotiate, giving Mat the option of not opening. It was a choice between having the option of not opening, or him not taking the letter, and thus not opening it. In order to get him to take the letter, she had to give him a way out.

 

He balked at promising to obey the instructions in the letter, not simply opening it! Why would anyone balk from opening a letter? In exchange for a valuable gateway?

 

If Mat is a man of his word, he's still not taking the letter. If he doesn't take the letter, he can't open it. If he does, but has the option to not open it, he might open it or he might not.

You conveniently left out Verin's instructions that he obey what is in the letter. Thats certainly a much more open ended promise than simply to carry it and open it- the instructions could say that he had to stick a knife in his own heart, or murder Olver. He was wise to decline making a blanket promise. On the other hand, simply promising to read a letter in 10 days is hardly onerous.

 

Yes, you trust Mat to keep to his word. But he didn't agree to take the letter until the option to not open it was on the table.

 

Because he was required to follow the instructions in the letter, which would be a deal killer for anybody with half a brain, let alone anyone suspicious of AS. Had Verin said- I need you to hold this letter for me and read it if i'm not back in 10 days, that hardly seems like something Mat would reject, particularly as it has an air of a woman in danger (which was true).

You still haven't explained why Verin would write a letter and then manipulate Mat into not opening it. Why bother writing the letter if she doesn't want Mat to read it?

 

Why she did it is open to question- however the fact that she did overcomplicate things to the point of the letter not getting opened is fact as far as i'm concerned (that's what happened). I suggested upthread that her oath prevented her giving Matt a letter she thought he'd open on purpose, relying on The Pattern to see the letter opened in time via Ta'veren wranglings, but i recognize the weaknesses of that theory. Whether that is true or not, I think its pretty logically sound that Verin was not careless enough to have layed the plan she claims she did, and that she had some other purpose in things going down the way they did that hasn't be disclosed yet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I havent read all the replys so sorry if I step on any toes.

 

To me from what I have read I think we are all over looking some very Verin like qualities. The woman isnt only clever she is down right smart. She wasnt a Brown just for the cover it offered her personality but because that is her true style, her calling. She is vicious when she needs to be and incredibly observant. Most importantly, she is the only person we know of who INTENTIONALLY seeks out becoming a DF to study it. She says she had to do horrible things but did them because of her oath. She doesnt say how high up she was in the BA, could be she was number 2. She has skills others dont have and initially gives Eugwene the Dreamer Ring (where did she even get it?).

 

The point is, Verin is much smarter, more informed, sneaky, and a down right badA, to have made a mistake with something like this. She is able to fool the DO and all her fellow DA sisters into thinking she was a stalwart force of evil while actually plotting against them; all the while fulling her oaths to the DO and avoiding them as possible, and working to save the world with intimate knowledge she had gained from the inside; a woman who spent years refining her skills and commits suicide to pass on final instructions to Eugwene. We really think this woman would make a mistake?

 

Not only do I think she knew had Mat would react to the letter and had reasons for her actions, I also think she had other information that Mats gambling sense would play a critical role in the futrue and this tested that chance. Notice the Band is still near Camelyn and they are the best fighting force of the age, yet Mat fulfilled all his promises and prophecies, and saves Morraine which we know Rand needs to win.

 

Vern is a badA and knew more than she let on and what she was doing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This was in repsonse to you stating that the letter contained no instructions, as destroying the Waygate was so obvious Elayne was sure to do it if told there was an army coming.

 

My point was it contained no instructions Mat would have to be compelled to follow, as opposed to being eager to follow. Why would he resist anything Verin left in that letter? Why would he do anything BUT convince Elayne to do as Verin recommended?

So you think it's a good idea to give someone instructions and just hope they decide to follow them? Without getting them to promise they will follow them? Someone you barely know? And just trust to the goodness of their heart? Getting Mat to promise to carry out the instructions is not an absurd idea.

 

 

He only says he will if he accepts your generous offer of a Gateway. In point of fact, he didn't. He said no. Verin then had to renegotiate, giving Mat the option of not opening. It was a choice between having the option of not opening, or him not taking the letter, and thus not opening it. In order to get him to take the letter, she had to give him a way out.

 

He balked at promising to obey the instructions in the letter, not simply opening it! Why would anyone balk from opening a letter? In exchange for a valuable gateway?

Hmm, maybe because he doesn't trust AS. How many times do you want me to repeat that? The Gateway isn't all that valuable, it saves him a couple of weeks. The letter could contain any number of things, and Mat might feel compelled to obey them, and therefore would decline so as to avoid those entangling AS strings he's always trying to avoid.

 

If Mat is a man of his word, he's still not taking the letter. If he doesn't take the letter, he can't open it. If he does, but has the option to not open it, he might open it or he might not.

You conveniently left out Verin's instructions that he obey what is in the letter. Thats certainly a much more open ended promise than simply to carry it and open it- the instructions could say that he had to stick a knife in his own heart, or murder Olver. He was wise to decline making a blanket promise. On the other hand, simply promising to read a letter in 10 days is hardly onerous.

Verin said she doubted Mat would find her instructions harsh. Mat has no reason to think it would be anything like that. Really, it makes no difference. She could say, "open this letter in ten days", or she could say "open this letter in ten days. It contains instructions." Difference? Negligible. Mat would still refuse to take it because he doesn't want to get caught up in her plans. If she hands him a mysterious letter and refuses to tell him what's in it, is he likely to open it? No. If she tells him it's valuable information, will he open it? Still likely not, because he wants to avoid her plans.

 

Yes, you trust Mat to keep to his word. But he didn't agree to take the letter until the option to not open it was on the table.

 

Because he was required to follow the instructions in the letter, which would be a deal killer for anybody with half a brain, let alone anyone suspicious of AS. Had Verin said- I need you to hold this letter for me and read it if i'm not back in 10 days, that hardly seems like something Mat would reject, particularly as it has an air of a woman in danger (which was true).

It has the air of an AS making plans. Mat would avoid.

 

You still haven't explained why Verin would write a letter and then manipulate Mat into not opening it. Why bother writing the letter if she doesn't want Mat to read it?

 

Why she did it is open to question- however the fact that she did overcomplicate things to the point of the letter not getting opened is fact as far as i'm concerned (that's what happened). I suggested upthread that her oath prevented her giving Matt a letter she thought he'd open on purpose, relying on The Pattern to see the letter opened in time via Ta'veren wranglings, but i recognize the weaknesses of that theory. Whether that is true or not, I think its pretty logically sound that Verin was not careless enough to have layed the plan she claims she did, and that she had some other purpose in things going down the way they did that hasn't be disclosed yet.

The oath doesn't work in the way you suggest. If she knew she would be dead by the time the letter was opened, then the promise to keep the Great Lord's secrets until the hour of her death has been fulfilled. She didn't overcomplicate things in the slightest. She just went head to head with an idiot who would likely have stubbornly refused to do as she asked simply because of who was doing the asking.

 

We really think this woman would make a mistake?
People make mistakes. No matter how smart, they are still only human.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
So you think it's a good idea to give someone instructions and just hope they decide to follow them? Without getting them to promise they will follow them? Someone you barely know? And just trust to the goodness of their heart? Getting Mat to promise to carry out the instructions is not an absurd idea.

 

So you think its a good idea to make someone take an oath and just trust to the goodness of their heart that they will follow it, if you also think they might let a city fall to the shadow for no good reason? Come on. If Verin thought for a second that Mat wouldn't go out of his way to prevent Caemlyn from being consumed by a trolloc horde by the simple act of showing Elayne a letter... why would she possible consider trusting his oath? This is absurd, only a hideously evil person would have the means to stop an entire city from being tortured and eaten but would fail to take the simple steps necessary to stop it- would an oath hold such a hideously evil person?

 

The letter could contain any number of things, and Mat might feel compelled to obey them, and therefore would decline so as to avoid those entangling AS strings he's always trying to avoid.

 

But he DID accept an AS deal for the gateway- a deal which held him in a specific location known to the AS. So the same logic would indicate Mat would surely turn down the deal, because being stuck in one place (where another AS is queen mind you) is a GREAT way to get entangled in Aes Sedai strings. Heck, it IS an AS string. So you are arguing Mat avoided potential strings that would be of his own acceptance (by reading a letter and finding it so compelling that he OF HIS OWN WILL felt the need to act on) by accepting very real strings that forced him to stay in one place where anything might befall him? Like, say, a Gholam hunting you?

 

Not only what you suggest is quite intentionally burying his head in the sand (because such a letter would demonstrably be important if it by mere words entangled you... you know, something like the city you are currently in about to be invaded by a shadow horde)... but entangling yourself with a different Verin thread in order to avoid a hypothetical, voluntary one. And remember this isn't what Mat might reason- this is what Verin decided Mat would reason.

 

She could say, "open this letter in ten days", or she could say "open this letter in ten days. It contains instructions." Difference? Negligible. Mat would still refuse to take it because he doesn't want to get caught up in her plans

 

If you aren't acknowledging that there is a monumental difference between promising to read a letter and promising to obey whatever that letter might say, you're just being obstinate. That is not a negligible difference, and its unserious to say so.

It has the air of an AS making plans. Mat would avoid.

As opposed to promising to stay planted in Caemlyn for a month, which certainly doesn't sound like any kind of weird AS plot.

She just went head to head with an idiot who would likely have stubbornly refused to do as she asked simply because of who was doing the asking.

 

Which might stand up if in fact that idiot hadn't agreed to a deal even more restrictive than the one he would allegedly reject.

Edited by mbuehner

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
So you think it's a good idea to give someone instructions and just hope they decide to follow them? Without getting them to promise they will follow them? Someone you barely know? And just trust to the goodness of their heart? Getting Mat to promise to carry out the instructions is not an absurd idea.

 

So you think its a good idea to make someone take an oath and just trust to the goodness of their heart that they will follow it, if you also think they might let a city fall to the shadow for no good reason? Come on. If Verin thought for a second that Mat wouldn't go out of his way to prevent Caemlyn from being consumed by a trolloc horde by the simple act of showing Elayne a letter... why would she possible consider trusting his oath? This is absurd, only a hideously evil person would have the means to stop an entire city from being tortured and eaten but would fail to take the simple steps necessary to stop it- would an oath hold such a hideously evil person?

Actually, an incredibly lazy person or an incredibly cowardly person would both have reasons to avoid following the instructions. The lazy one can't be bothered and the coward would want to get the hell out of dodge. Neither of those things precludes someone being honourable to follow through on a promise made. The important thing is, if you are giving someone a letter containing instructions, don't you think it's a good idea to get them to agree to follow them, rather than just shrugging and hoping things turn out for the best?

 

The letter could contain any number of things, and Mat might feel compelled to obey them, and therefore would decline so as to avoid those entangling AS strings he's always trying to avoid.

 

But he DID accept an AS deal for the gateway- a deal which held him in a specific location known to the AS. So the same logic would indicate Mat would surely turn down the deal, because being stuck in one place (where another AS is queen mind you) is a GREAT way to get entangled in Aes Sedai strings. Heck, it IS an AS string. So you are arguing Mat avoided potential strings that would be of his own acceptance (by reading a letter and finding it so compelling that he OF HIS OWN WILL felt the need to act on) by accepting very real strings that forced him to stay in one place where anything might befall him? Like, say, a Gholam hunting you?

A gholam hunting you is not an AS string. It doesn't really have anything to do with anything. As it is, mat has a choice of which string - letter or wait. He has a way out, a choice. Furthermore, he wants to be in Caemlyn anyway, at least for a short time. With the twenty days of marching to get there it would have taken, he's essentially agreed to wait ten days. And he can use that time to gather information and plan. A ten day delay against whatever the letter contains.

 

Not only what you suggest is quite intentionally burying his head in the sand (because such a letter would demonstrably be important if it by mere words entangled you... you know, something like the city you are currently in about to be invaded by a shadow horde)... but entangling yourself with a different Verin thread in order to avoid a hypothetical, voluntary one. And remember this isn't what Mat might reason- this is what Verin decided Mat would reason.
Whatever is in the letter need not be important, it need only play on Mat's conscience enough to get him to do what it asks. It might only be a minor inconvenience to him, it might not save any lives, but all the same he would rather not be Verin's errand boy. In terms of strings, he is either where he wants to be when he wants to be there, with no obligation besides waiting a little longer, or he opens the letter and is caught up in AS plans. It's harder for Verin to turn Mat sitting outside Caemlyn to her advantage than it is whatever the contents of the letter are.

 

She could say, "open this letter in ten days", or she could say "open this letter in ten days. It contains instructions." Difference? Negligible. Mat would still refuse to take it because he doesn't want to get caught up in her plans

 

If you aren't acknowledging that there is a monumental difference between promising to read a letter and promising to obey whatever that letter might say, you're just being obstinate. That is not a negligible difference, and its unserious to say so.

Frankly, no, the difference is not so great as you try to make out. Sure, it might be, if it wasn't for Verin saying that Mat wouldn't find the instructions harsh. Something like "kill Olver" is harsh. The hypothetical instructions people come up with as to what the letter might contain are always exactly what Verin said they wouldn't be. It is not a difference between agreeing to read a letter and to read the letter and obey the instructions-which-could-be-anything, it is the difference between reading the letter and obeying the instructions that are unlikely to be a big problem, and just reading the letter. This is only a problem because you grossly exaggerate the difference.

 

It has the air of an AS making plans. Mat would avoid.

As opposed to promising to stay planted in Caemlyn for a month, which certainly doesn't sound like any kind of weird AS plot.

Not overly so, no. It sounds more like an attempt to pressure him into opening the letter by making him want to avoid the inconvenience of a long wait (hence intially asking 50 days).

 

She just went head to head with an idiot who would likely have stubbornly refused to do as she asked simply because of who was doing the asking.
Which might stand up if in fact that idiot hadn't agreed to a deal even more restrictive than the one he would allegedly reject.
More restrictive means less restrictive now? Your way he has a choice of read the letter. Verin's way he has a choice of read the letter or don't read the letter.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Verin giving Mat a letter implies four things:

 

1. The letters are her 'Plan B'.

 

2. She trusts Mat to keep his word. Her first condition for him receiving the letter is that he not open it for at least 10 days. If he opens it sooner, she has made known ( what she knows of the Dark ) sooner than the last hour of her life. That would ruin everything she has spent the last ( 40? 70? I forget ) years accomplishing. If she didn't trust Mat she would never have given him a letter at all.

 

3. That it makes no difference from her calculations whether he opens the letter after ten days or not. She figures the attack on Caemlyn will happen within 30 days or she would have insisted on a longer end-date. Her entire object was to at the very least have Mat and the entire Band-of-the-Red-Hand in Caemlyn to counter the attack whenever it came.

 

4. That if she were successful in retrieving the Oath Rod and removing her vows, she could return to 'Plan A', which is to do everything possible to foil the Dark far more directly than what she could manage under 'Plan B.'

 

Rather than not wanting Mat to be there, she was doing everything she could envision to ensure that he ( and the entire Band ) would be there. She just didn't make allowance for the possibility that Moiraine was still alive and could be rescued. We can't really blame her for that.

Edited by Bob T Dwarf

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Verin giving Mat a letter implies four things:

 

1. The letters are her 'Plan B'.

 

2. She trusts Mat to keep his word. Her first condition for him receiving the letter is that he not open it for at least 10 days. If he opens it sooner, she has made known ( what she knows of the Dark ) sooner than the last hour of her life. That would ruin everything she has spent the last ( 40? 70? I forget ) years accomplishing. If she didn't trust Mat she would never have given him a letter at all.

 

3. That it makes no difference from her calculations whether he opens the letter after ten days or not. She figures the attack on Caemlyn will happen within 30 days or she would have insisted on a longer end-date. Her entire object was to at the very least have Mat and the entire Band-of-the-Red-Hand in Caemlyn to counter the attack whenever it came.

 

4. That if she were successful in retrieving the Oath Rod and removing her vows, she could return to 'Plan A', which is to do everything possible to foil the Dark far more directly than what she could manage under 'Plan B.'

 

Rather than not wanting Mat to be there, she was doing everything she could envision to ensure that he ( and the entire Band ) would be there. She just didn't make allowance for the possibility that Moiraine was still alive and could be rescued. We can't really blame her for that.

 

I agree 100%

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Frankly, no, the difference is not so great as you try to make out.

 

Thats just silly. Can I send you an email? Will you agree to do whatever the email tells you? Not a big difference in those two questions? Right.

 

More restrictive means less restrictive now? Your way he has a choice of read the letter. Verin's way he has a choice of read the letter or don't read the letter.

 

And again you're pretending staying in Caemlyn isn't a restriction. Can i send you an email? Will you stay in the town you are in for the next 30 days? Right, not a big difference. Lets get a little perspective here ok?

 

For the record I like what Bob T Dwarf is saying above.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Frankly, no, the difference is not so great as you try to make out.

 

Thats just silly. Can I send you an email? Will you agree to do whatever the email tells you? Not a big difference in those two questions? Right.

It depends. Even leaving aside that the pattern was forcing her to come to see Mat (something she planned to do anyway, but simply happened sooner), going to see mat and giving him a letter is quite a way out of her way (even with Travelling). Also, a big difference is that Verin and Mat knew each other, albeit not well, whereas I don't know you from Adam. If I am putting effort into giving someone important instructions, and getting them to promise to go through with them (as opposed to just giving them to him and saying "don't worry if you can't do it, it's not important"), that's a little different to just randomly emailing some stranger after extracting a blanket promise from them to obey whatever it says. Context is important here. In some circumstances there is a bigger gap than others. Igonring that simply makes you look silly.

 

More restrictive means less restrictive now? Your way he has a choice of read the letter. Verin's way he has a choice of read the letter or don't read the letter.

 

And again you're pretending staying in Caemlyn isn't a restriction. Can i send you an email? Will you stay in the town you are in for the next 30 days? Right, not a big difference. Lets get a little perspective here ok?

Well, I wasn't planning on going anywhere, so staying n town for thirty days isn't actually a big problem. Yes, staying in Caemlyn is a restriction, no-one is actually claiming otherwise. But Mat still has a choice. Your way he reads the letter. That's his only choice. "Take this, wait ten days, read it." The way Verin did it, he can choose to read it, or choose not to. Yes, he accepts help from an AS, but on his terms. Your way, he accepts on her terms or not at all. And as I have said, he would likely not accept at all under those circumstances. After all, there's not much incentive for him to do so.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Honestly, His Luck did pull through if you think about it. (not that it matters) Because the letter WAS opened at the right time because if it hadn't been then The Band wouldn't have thought that the fires were caused by Trollocs and The city would be lost(I think the Band will save the city). If they just saw fires they would have thought it to be an accident and wouldnt have gone to help until it was too late to win the fight. So Regardless, Verins plan doesn't really matter as long as the City isn't lost to the Trollocs which it probably wont be due to the fact that we see that Andor still has there "Dragons" long after the final battle.

 

Just my thoughts anyways

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's unclear how many people Light or Shadow know of Mat's connection to the Horn but I'm assuming that the Shadow knows and plans to use him in some way. Since Verin was Black I think she knew of a plan to capture and use Mat, so it was her intention for him to avoid the battle because she knew that if he was there, there was a chance for him to be taken.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't think it matters one way or another.

 

Verin knew of the attack, and she wanted to make sure that things would turn out okay. She gave Mat a letter that provided enough information to prepare for the attack. She was relying on his Ta'veren nature to resolve the issue. His Ta'veren-ness would have forced him to open the letter if needed, but Mat was needed somewhere else (to rescue Moiraine).

 

The pattern did not force Mat to open the letter, because it didn't need him to.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think a lot of people are overthinking the situation.It happens, but it's the same thing we see in a lot of these discussions, we're evaluating them based on the omniscient point of view of the reader. We know all of these other things that are going on, the other scenarios, the other thoughts. Verin doesn't. She's making a decision based on the limited information she has in hand.

 

It's like someone else pointed out. She never intended for the letter to be needed. She also never expected that there would be a hunt for the BA in the Tower that would cause a small group to have removed the Oath Rod from a place it would normally be secreted away. We're expecting her to choose the Waygate to be one of the things she reveals to Egwene, but she's left a letter with Mat. She's not expecting to NEED to reveal that to Egwene when viewed in light of all of the other information she has to pass on (the books, the cipher, the nature of her situation, and all while the Red AS is checking in on them and interupting them).

 

She's expecting Mat to open the letter based on the things she knows of his character. She knows he is a man of his word (even if he grumbles about having to do a thing). She also knows his curiosity is insatiable (to this point). Little does she know he will betray both characteristics.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

She obviously has foreseen an eventuality where the letter would be needed, and done her best to prepare for it by arranging everything as she has. The reason some of us are left suspicious, is that requiring Mat to adhere to her instructions therein as part of their bargain does nothing to help the prospects of his deciding to open the letter. She had absolutely no incentive to do it this way, and good reason not to. Why did she, then? Remember, this is the same Verin who told the wondergirls that secrets have no inherit value of their own. It's odd for her to fall victim to that AS trait of being mysterious to a fault.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1. Verin was a double agent but on the side of the Light. She would have known of Moridin's immediate command for the death of Perrin and Mat.

 

The letter would have saved Mat's life if unopened, as he would not have been in Caemlyn itself. The trollocs were attacking WITHIN the city, and not on the outskirts where Mat and his band was.

 

If that letter was opened before its time, Mat would have been one of the commanders there inside the city itself, aligned with the Queen as her desperately needed merc forces. Rand would even approve Mat to remain there.

 

Even with the gate destroyed, Moridin will use a back up plan to stire trouble in the city using darkfriend royals, merchants and rabble instead as he desperately wants no troops to be avaliable for the Last Battle.

 

As it is, Mat will not be in Caemlyn but waiting for an ashaman's travel portal. The trollocs will stand no chance from the cannons,literally stuck in between windfinder balls of fire, The black rod balefire ter angreal, the heavily fortifide palace with troops from the 10 royal houses, and a reserved massive merc army on the outskirts to crush the trollocs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Come on. If that were the case (i.e., if she hoped the letter would never be read) she wouldn't have given him the letter in the first place. She has, therefore she intended it to have some kind of use. It could be that she hoped it would be open by someone other than Mat after he had already left, but in that case her demand that he remain there for 20 days (or so) is illogical. The longer he stays, the more chance there is of his getting involved in the invasion accidentally. Logically, she must've planned for just that eventuality even in the case that her letter remained untouched, else her requirements make little sense.

 

Also, with regard to the Light's chances at Caemlyn, you're right that quite a few channelers were present there. The Dragons, unfortunately, are almost all stored away inside the city. Not only would it be exceedingly hard to get them out and deployed in time to counter the attack, and their use inside the city very limited, they now face the risk of being taken over by the Shadow. And, disregarding the fact that Elayne has gone to tFoM with some of her forces (among which some of the channelers bound to her ought to be), the Shadow has channelers of its own. So, I very much doubt that the invasion would be swept aside as easily as you seem to suggest.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Come on. If that were the case (i.e., if she hoped the letter would never be read) she wouldn't have given him the letter in the first place. She has, therefore she intended it to have some kind of use.

 

Again, couldn't her plan have just been to put the information in his hand and let the pattern do the rest? This seems more in line with Verin's character than assuming that she made a mistake.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You mean, if she had just handed it to him the Pattern wouldn't have been able to keep him from opening it, as opposed to its ability to make him open it even though he might not want to, due to the way she decided to go? It's possible (after all, when you're not sure what to do, small things can tip the scales), but whatever was able to reel him in after he escaped Rand in Cairhien probably has the ability to direct him exactly where he'd be needed regardless. Plus, Verin put letters in others' hands, and never tried to do the same that we know of (certainly not with Rand, and we all know how stronger a ta'veren he is; Verin does as well).

 

And, as you say, I find it hard to believe she made a mistake. Yes, she might've misjudged Mat's suspicion of AS. But the problem isn't that she miscalculated, it's that there's no apparent advantage to the method she decided upon, not from anyone's PoV. Having said that, I find it just as likely that this is a miscalculation by BS as that it's some kind or evil (or purple) plot. Perhaps more so.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...