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Is Alanna Black Ajah?


Taelin
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So, Alanna disappears from Tear right before Rand returns after becoming "anointed in light" (Nyneave can see a layer of light protecting him from the madness, and Rand can identify DF's by looking in his eyes, plus, DF's can't bear to see him channeling anymore as seen in Maradon). This falls right into the timeline of the cleansing of the White Tower, when a lot of Black sisters who were abroad vanished. Other supporting evidence:

 


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  • Egwene was suspicious of her when testing for the accepted, albeit without specific reason
  • She was present with Verin (who was black even though reluctantly) in the Two Rivers
  • Verin tells Perrin not to trust Alanna
  • Loyal said Alanna disappeared for a short time without her warder's knowledge while in Emond's Field, and the Trollocs that wounded Perrin ended up in the same general area (even though Luc was probably the one who ultimately guided them around the trap Perrin laid for them)
  • She showed a lot of interest in the 3 Ta'Veren in TGH (reportedly, not through POV)

 

On the other hand, she has always shown some concern for Rand, particularly when Rand was boxed by Galena. This could be due to feeling pain through the warder bond. She is also "very protective of her warders" as we are told at some point through the story.

 

The obvious answer would be "yes", but something tells me there is more to it, and that she really isn't.

 

Opinions anyone?

Edited by Taelin
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Verin almost certainly would've known if Alanna was Black and surely would've wrote her name in the book and Egwene would've mentioned it since she already had suspicions about Alanna from way back. And given that Rand is bonded to Alanna and Verin knew it, she most likely would've mentioned Alanna being Black to Egwene before she died since that is crucial info. Since this didn't happen, most likely Alanna is not Black.

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Verin almost certainly would've known if Alanna was Black and surely would've wrote her name in the book and Egwene would've mentioned it since she already had suspicions about Alanna from way back. And given that Rand is bonded to Alanna and Verin knew it, she most likely would've mentioned Alanna being Black to Egwene before she died since that is crucial info. Since this didn't happen, most likely Alanna is not Black.

she has reason to exclude alanna though, due to the bond and the potential undesirable effects upon the saviour of earth

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I'm pretty confident that Alanna isn't black. I'm more leaning towards she just got some really nifty information from Verin, probably about massive amounts of trollocs about to pour into Tear and she should alert the people, but she's gone off to roll around in the hay with Ihvon. (that was a joke and play off of Matt's letter. not serious, least I hope not)

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Just because Egwene's perspective told about her thoughts on some of the black sisters, doesn't mean she pondered at all of them in a way for us to get a comprehensive list. If Alanna being black was suppose to be a surprise, it would be simple enough to leave her out and then have her reflect on it later.

 

I do not think she is though. My opinion isn't based on the reading, just on my gut.

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It's an interesting possibility, there is certainly evidence to support it but I'm also under the impression that Verin would have known, and would have included her on the list. The fact that Verin said not to trust her doesn't mean much to me, as there are many in the White Tower that would say the same about other non-black's. For example, Elaida wasn't black, but I'm sure many close to Rand would warn him not to trust her. Moiraine also said to be weary of all Aes Sedai.

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I think Alanna is Black, Verin is just not sure enough to write it in her little black book. She took quite some time to determine that Cadsuane was not and also told Egwene that she may have missed a few and some she was not sure of.

 

Other than that Verin warned Perrin against Alanna and that Alanna forcibly bonded Rand, there is no decisive evidence to tell either way.

 

The bond is worrying but I think it is a RAFO. Whether Alanna is Black or light, Alanna will have some important but secretive mission that Verin assigned in one of her letters or... her death will send Rand back to his dark self.

 

Oh the anticipation...

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Verin almost certainly would've known if Alanna was Black and surely would've wrote her name in the book and Egwene would've mentioned it since she already had suspicions about Alanna from way back. And given that Rand is bonded to Alanna and Verin knew it, she most likely would've mentioned Alanna being Black to Egwene before she died since that is crucial info. Since this didn't happen, most likely Alanna is not Black.

she has reason to exclude alanna though, due to the bond and the potential undesirable effects upon the saviour of earth

 

Really don't think she would take the risk of not alerting anyone to this. That is a huge gamble, one that Verin would not be prone to make given what she dedicated her life to.

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On the question of whether Alanna is black, I think that the evidence available hints more that she isn't rather than she is.

 

First, consider the fact that she's bonded to Rand. Now, I know that it is possible for a Sister to be Black without her Warder knowing about it (Anyone remember Kinnet one of the Black 13's Warder? It was clear that he hadn't known his sister's allegiance and then there's Careanne's three warders (Of whom only one was a darkfriend)),but I hardly think it would be possible to do so if the Warder was an Ashaman and the Dragon Reborn to boot. Remember that she can't control him at all, so how could she manage to keep that big a secret from him?

 

Additionally, she has on at least one occasion spoke to Rand about releasing him from his bond or passing it to someone. What's telling about that is that she spoke of it in terms of something she longed to do. Not the kind of thing a black sister would consider doing.

 

Another thing to consider is Verin. Based on what we know of her, does anyone think that she'd allow a Black to be that close to Rand? She'd already shown a willingness to kill Cadsuane if she had proven a threat, so why would she hestitate to remove Alanna by revealing her to Rand after she left him in Tear? I know that killing her isn't an option, but compelling her to release him from the bond isn't. Also, given that she became black to fight the black, why when she spoke to Egwene, wouldn't she make special note of Alanna's status as a threat given Rand's relationship with her ? That just wouldn't make sense. You'd have to be pretty stupid to miss that one (and she did reveal that one of the sisters allied to Rand was black (I mean beyond Elza), and Verin proved herself to be anything but stupid.

 

Also, remember her comments to Perrin (I Think) about Aes Sedai (and Alanna in particular) that even non black sisters' were not to be trusted because they had their own agendas. That stronger implies that Alanna isn't black, just some bat crazy Green with her own schedule.

 

And on the point of her disappearing in the Two Rivers. Remember that it was without Ihvon which bothered him terribly while she was at Emond's Field while Perrin was being ambushed. She sent Ihvon to watch over Perrin and bring him back to the town. It was fortunate that she did so since Ihvon arrived just in time to save Perrin and help save the others (Even though he was told to just save Perrin). Would a Black sister do that considering how much everyone else wants Perrin dead?

 

I think the more credible conclusion is that she's not black, just your average Aes Sedai with the normal amount of Aes Sedai certainty that she's knows better than anyone else what needs to be done and doesn't have to explain herself.

 

tud

Edited by Tud
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A rebuttal to the some points raised against Black Alanna,

 

 

On the question of whether Alanna is black, I think that the evidence available hints more that she isn't rather than she is.

 

First, consider the fact that she's bonded to Rand. Now, I know that it is possible for a Sister to be Black without her Warder knowing about it (Anyone remember Kinnet one of the Black 13's Warder? It was clear that he hadn't known his sister's allegiance and then there's Careanne's three warders (Of whom only one was a darkfriend)),but I hardly think it would be possible to do so if the Warder was an Ashaman and the Dragon Reborn to boot. Remember that she can't control him at all, so how could she manage to keep that big a secret from him?

Why would Ashaman Warders be better at determining Black sisters over regular Warders? They can only sense emotions, not read minds as well. Black sisters just have to be careful of lying in front of them, and they're already adept at it.

 

 

Additionally, she has on at least one occasion spoke to Rand about releasing him from his bond or passing it to someone. What's telling about that is that she spoke of it in terms of something she longed to do. Not the kind of thing a black sister would consider doing.

Rand has asked her to release the bond. She didn't do it.

 

 

Another thing to consider is Verin. Based on what we know of her, does anyone think that she'd allow a Black to be that close to Rand? She'd already shown a willingness to kill Cadsuane if she had proven a threat, so why would she hestitate to remove Alanna by revealing her to Rand after she left him in Tear? I know that killing her isn't an option, but compelling her to release him from the bond isn't. Also, given that she became black to fight the black, why when she spoke to Egwene, wouldn't she make special note of Alanna's status as a threat given Rand's relationship with her ? That just wouldn't make sense. You'd have to be pretty stupid to miss that one (and she did reveal that one of the sisters allied to Rand was black (I mean beyond Elza), and Verin proved herself to be anything but stupid.

Verin let Elza be close to Rand. It's true that Verin "did something" to Elza beforehand but she also had the opportunity to "do something" to Alanna when Rand was first Bonded. It's possible Verin doesn't consider Alanna to be a threat to Rand. Also, Verin is Black herself. She can't reveal Alanna to Rand.

 

Egwene is a bit harder to explain. I'd think, being a Brown, Verin would have been thorough just for the sake of completeness. However, maybe Verin removed Alanna from the list after deciding revealing Alanna would compromise whatever task Verin set out for her.

 

 

Also, remember her comments to Perrin (I Think) about Aes Sedai (and Alanna in particular) that even non black sisters' were not to be trusted because they had their own agendas. That stronger implies that Alanna isn't black, just some bat crazy Green with her own schedule.

Verin can't imply Alanna is Black. She is forbidden from doing so. Saying Aes Sedai in general can't be trusted might be the best that she can do.

 

 

And on the point of her disappearing in the Two Rivers. Remember that it was without Ihvon which bothered him terribly while she was at Emond's Field while Perrin was being ambushed. She sent Ihvon to watch over Perrin and bring him back to the town. It was fortunate that she did so since Ihvon arrived just in time to save Perrin and help save the others (Even though he was told to just save Perrin). Would a Black sister do that considering how much everyone else wants Perrin dead?

There was no kill-order on Perrin (and Mat) at that time.

 

 

I think the more credible conclusion is that she's not black, just your average Aes Sedai with the normal amount of Aes Sedai certainty that she's knows better than anyone else what needs to be done and doesn't have to explain herself.

 

tud

Alanna has been a point-of-interest beyond your average Aes Sedai. Whatever she's up to, it should be big (at least I hope so). How great would it be if, when next we see her (from a Rand POV) she states my "dress is green" and then proceeds to release Rand from the Bond.

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We know two characteristics of Rand's 'Dark Blinding' quality:

 

- Rand needs to be very close to darkfriends to ID them (as per his forced line up of Tairen nobility where he IDs and exiles Weiramon and Lady Anaiyella).

- Darkfriends can be at considerable distance from him and still get negative effects - to the point of being literally blinded. (Lord Bashere's cousin @ Maradon.)

 

Alannah left Tear before Rand had opportunity to look into her eyes. Combine that knowledge with the special warder-bond characteristics... I'm definitely leaning towards her turning out to be black.

 

If it turns out to be true that Alannah is black. It puts an ironic twist on Cadsuane's story. She had feared in ToM that the shadow could use her to locate Rand, but all along she allowed (and even used) Alannah as a tool to get general location of Rand herself.

Edited by 2RiversFan
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Reading through this thread, I am forcibly reminded of similar discussions about Verin herself.. and look how she turned out.

 

I'm surprised that so few consider the possibility that Alanna is something like Verin herself, rather than Black Ajah in whole, more like very dark green. It would serve to explain a whole lot, including those elements of her character which don't seem to fit that of someone outright evil (as well as the incongruity of Verin's actions vis-à-vis Alanna).

 

That said, I don't know what to make of her myself. My instincts have shifted on this issue from book to book, but have lately tended to think her something of a red herring -- at least on the Black Ajah issue (on her continued bonding of Rand I remain decidedly undecided).

 

Still, if you were putting odds on it, Alanna would be among those whose revelation as a Darkfriend would not be terribly shocking (I'd put Sorilea and Kiruna Nachiman in that category myself).

Edited by Alleluia_Cone
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Sorelia a darkfriend? That would break my heart.

 

I personally think that she isn't a dark friend, though I do suspect that there is something that she's hiding which is important or something very significant is going to happen including her.

 

There is a lot to say that she might be a dark friend, but she seems to genuinely care for Rand. Plus Rand isn't showing any alarm that she's gone now. I know that doesn't really mean anything but you'd think that with how sensitive he is to dark friends these days he would be able to tell whether a woman bonded to him was one

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Alanna is probably not black.

Reasons:

1) Verin spent lots of time with her on the Two Rivers trip and afterwards.

2) The BA have secret signals to recognise each other. Galina and Katerine didn't know that they were both BA until they went off to kidnap Rand. They learnt about each other on the trip.

They must use a secret code - maybe a combination of sniffs and skirt-smoothings?

3) Given above, Verin -Alanna would have discovered each other's affiliations if both were BA. Verin would also have known if Alanna was not BA.

 

Verin warning Perrin was more likely because she didn't want Alanna to bind Perrin.

 

Egwene has a relationship with Alanna. She taught the girls on the trip back to the WT from Shienar and then apologised for the misbehaving ter-angreal at Egwene's testing.

Egwene would definitely notice Alanna's name in the book and think about it, the way she did with the other BA she knew personally.

 

Too many people know Alanna is bonded to Rand for Egwene not to know about this. The Wise Ones know, Cadsuane's AS group knows, Aviendha, Min and Elayne know, Nyn knows.

 

If Alanna was Black, Verin would have known and would have recorded her name. Perhaps with a caveat that killing her might have unpredictable consequences.

Since we've not seen any hint of this, Alanna is probably not black.

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if alanna had been on that list, verin would have also made note that she had bonded rand. just because she is not on the list though, is no reason to think she is not black ajah. the fact that verin took her to the two rivers on the other hand, is reason to think she isn't. would verin bring something as unpredictable and dangerous as a person she knows to be black ajah with her to the two rivers? alanna might be unpredictable, but if she isn't black ajah she isn't likely to hold mat's sisters hostage or something insane like that.

 

i really don't know if alanna is black or not, but i think the question is still out, but with verin's study, and close scrutiny it doesn't seem highly likely, particularly because verin was capable of compulsion and the erase of memory, even with warders involved.

 

so i suspect verin would have known, and egwene would have crapped herself when she read the name with the note.

 

(EDIT)honestly i did start writing this hoping to say that i think she is black, but the more i thought it through, the least likely i found it, verin was brilliant, there is no way she wouldn't have figured it out and recorded it, and as i said egwene would have crapped herself if she had found out that rand was bonded to a black sister(/EDIT)

Edited by Testy al'Carr
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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm not entirely sure on Alanna. The time they spent together in the Two Rivers would seem to indicate that Verin had ample time to ferret out whether or not Alanna was BA, but as indicated, Verin didn't get everyone.

 

I won't be surprised if she's Black Ajah, but I'm not sure that she is.

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I said it before and will say this again Alanna is most likely, 99.9%999, black and I think that Verin knew it. I also think that she didn't say anything for various reasons: 1) Rand's bond effect if she is killed or stilled, 2) Can you imagine reaction of WT if they find out that the DR is bonded to black? Do you think they would not trust in him even less (though at this point it's hard to achieve), 3) Alanna might have another important part to play; after all, if Verin was able to "penetrate" blacks who to say she was the only one (not to say that there are scores of spies or anything like that but that Verin might have kept an eye for possible recruit or something along the lines).

 

The most heavily used argument that people usually use against the theory of her being black is that Verin didn't say anything. Right....AS are so famous for giving the whole story....

 

On the other hand, there are numerous instances that shadow of suspicion has fallen on her (which are already mentioned here so I wont repeat it).

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3) Alanna might have another important part to play; after all, if Verin was able to "penetrate" blacks who to say she was the only one (not to say that there are scores of spies or anything like that but that Verin might have kept an eye for possible recruit or something along the lines).

 

I've brought up this possibility myself but for whatever reason it doesn't seem to get a lot of consideration. I suppose people don't find Alanna clever enough to survive as a disloyal servant of the Shadow like Verin. But assuming she was a very dark Green, as opposed to a full on Black, it would explain a lot.

 

Personally, I still think she's a red herring. Having said that, if she is a member of the Black Ajah, it wouldn't shock me, as long she was something like Verin -- it would shock me if she was committed though.

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3) Alanna might have another important part to play; after all, if Verin was able to "penetrate" blacks who to say she was the only one (not to say that there are scores of spies or anything like that but that Verin might have kept an eye for possible recruit or something along the lines).

 

I've brought up this possibility myself but for whatever reason it doesn't seem to get a lot of consideration. I suppose people don't find Alanna clever enough to survive as a disloyal servant of the Shadow like Verin. But assuming she was a very dark Green, as opposed to a full on Black, it would explain a lot.

 

Personally, I still think she's a red herring. Having said that, if she is a member of the Black Ajah, it wouldn't shock me, as long she was something like Verin -- it would shock me if she was committed though.

It would shock me that RJ would use the same plot twist twice. If Alanna is black then so be it, let her be a real black with a serious intent. If she isn't, let her die in battle / pass the bond / marry Luckers (no pun intended) / whatever she is supposed to do in aMoL

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