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What was the point of Halima?

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I recently read Leigh Butlers’ The Wheel of Time Reread - COT and it hit me: what the hell is point of Halima/Aran’gar in story? S/he doesn’t actually do anything of consequence. Giving Egwene headaches and interfering with her dreams, bossing Delana, and occasionally beating Sheriam is all well and fine but it’s importance to plot is minimal. Might as well not being there at all.

Osan’gar purpose was to teach Flinn advanced Healing, he did it, and in next book we see him expose himself and book after - his sole (pardon second) appearance ends with him burned along with hilltop he was on. Ok,I get that. What I don’t understand is, and I will repeat myself: what the hell is point of Halima/Aran’gar in story? In fact, story would be (at list for me) better if there was no one to control and direct Black Ajah amongst Rebels. That could actually explain away all their cross-purpose working among SAS and their poorer performance. Not to mention that Balthamel was one of Shadows’ top two spymasters, so he should have as much or nearly as much political acumen as his Third Age counterparts and actually accomplish something. Instead of doing, you know, pretty much nothing. So, can somebody tell me what was the point of that?

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Guest PiotrekS

I personally tend to think that RJ used to write all Egwene's arc from around book 9 or 10 onwards on his weaker days.

 

I agree that Halima served no purpose at all - she was neither caught by Egwene or any other Aes Sedai, nor did she do any serious damage (even though Egwene allowed her in fact unlimited access to herself). If she wasn't there at all, nothing substantial would have changed.

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She did do serious damage. She stopped Egwene's dreaming for months. She also helped setting the Rebel AS on the Tower AS even more and make sure that there really comes a war. Well, she helped Egwene with that and other than that she was a bad politician and her schemes didn't go well either (because Egwene was kidnapped, for example).

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I think it's hard to quantify the damage Halima did since we don't get to see what position Egwene would have been in without Halima's presence. On the other hand, she does seem to have been largely ineffectual even considering her influence on Egwene's dreaming. I think the best conclusion is that the Dark One simply wanted to have a hand on the tiller of every organised group of channelers and that Halima served her purpose even though the Dark One didn't happen to exercise her use.

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well balthamel IS one of the weakest forsaken, he didn't even get a third name afaik. even moghedien had a third name.

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correct if i'm wrong but lanfear doesnt have a third name either

 

i thought it was given for doing some incredible as oppose to just being powerful with the one power.

 

as for halima, i think she didnt live up to being one of the forsaken, but those headaches kept egwene distracted from the bigger picture and that meant she was easier to manipulate into certain directions

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Guest PiotrekS

The damage Halima has done was minimal in comparison to what she could have done, having almost absolute freedom of action, unique camouflage (nobody expected a woman to channel saidin) and the deep trust of the Amyrlin. She could have killed or influenced Egwene, placed Compulsion on her, made Aes Sedai fight and kill each other. In that context, her actual accomplishments are terribly small.

 

If interfering with Egwene's Dreaming is to be deemed so vital for the Shadow, then I think I somehow missed in the text the examples of Egwene's dreams having so huge an importance for the Light. Most of her dreams are understandable only after the prophesized event has already happened. Her opposition to Rand's idea of breaking the Seals seems to me to be the first instance when the dream actually makes her pick a particular course of action. I think that interference with Egwene's Dreams was as useless for the Shadow as all the other Halima's activities.

 

She would be redeemed only if we were to see Mat's face after he's told he'd danced with Belthamel :wink:

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Guest PiotrekS

I think the pertinent quote is:

Her appetites had not altered, only broadened.
(KoD, Chapter 3)

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I think its too early to know whether or not halima put compulsion on egwene, it could be something more against rand than anything an with the very limited interaction between the two of them it could be possible yet

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I think its too early to know whether or not halima put compulsion on egwene, it could be something more against rand than anything an with the very limited interaction between the two of them it could be possible yet

 

Her only real accomplishment that is known as yet was to free Moghedien. Something no female Forsaken could have done and no male Forsaken could have gotten close enough to her to accomplish.

 

He/she also stood-in for Graendal dying gloriously in her stead leaving Rand convinced that Graendal is dead.

 

Therefore, Graendal is gonna hafta do something pretty substantial to justify both her presence and Halima's.

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well balthamel IS one of the weakest forsaken, he didn't even get a third name afaik. even moghedien had a third name.

 

Moghedien did not have a third name. Neither did Lanfear, Mesaana, Rahvin, or Balthamel. The rest all earned the third name. So even for the Forsaken it wasn't an easy thing to achieve, and it doesn't have anything to do with strength, as Lanfear, who is as strong as a woman can be, never earned it.

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I think most of her time was spent on preparation work, killing Anaiya/Kairen, killing the maids was used to secure her backstory and free up her path to Egwene. She couldn't have known she was about to be exposed, she believed she had plenty of time perform. Heck, even in the few short months she had the rebels terrified of an unknown assassin, not a bad accomplishment. She also tried to get a few proposals over the line that would continue to ensure division between TAS and SAS. Don't forget, her main authority figure to work through was a girl considered a child amyrlin by most of the sisters, as opposed to Mesaana who could work through Alivian/Elaida.

Edited by Mordaunt

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Halima also seeded the concept that it was possible for the GLoD to transfer souls to bodies of the opposite gender. However the channeler in question would retain his/ her original ability to channel saidin/ saidar. That increases our knowledge of WoTverse and it could be important at some stage to the future plot.

The rest of what Halima did/ didn't do has already been mentioned above including speculation about how exactly (s)he messed with Egwene's mind.

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I view it as one of tose plot lines that never received the pages it needed to reach it's full potential.

Edited by Pinzarn

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I think it's possible anything Halima did won't be seen until later. Or maybe she was just an idiot. I think maybe he she had a half-hatched plan or something... But was too distracted by flirting with/screwing everyone she could to keep her mind focused on what she was supposed to be doing. Demandred did say that it would be the end of her.

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Guest Emu on the Loose

I view it as one of tose plot lines that never received the pages it needed to reach it's full potential.

 

Yeah, I think this is it. It reminds me of the "Semirhage hated Lanfear" detail...a premise with good story potential that never got acted upon. Semi is toast now. I guess that's the thing about not having plot armor. Sometimes you die before you get to make a huge impact. I guess Aran'gar was one of those.

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Halima also seeded the concept that it was possible for the GLoD to transfer souls to bodies of the opposite gender. However the channeler in question would retain his/ her original ability to channel saidin/ saidar. That increases our knowledge of WoTverse and it could be important at some stage to the future plot.

The rest of what Halima did/ didn't do has already been mentioned above including speculation about how exactly (s)he messed with Egwene's mind.

 

And the Dark One was not pleased that s/he 'lost control' of Egwene (ToM Prologue).

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I think its too early to know whether or not halima put compulsion on egwene, it could be something more against rand than anything an with the very limited interaction between the two of them it could be possible yet

Exactly, she knew one of the only ways to save rand was not to swear on the oath rod, but she did it anyways. She went from supporting Rand to writing letters to turn all his holdings and followers against him drawing them to the FOM. There's more there, the "headaches" were a means of being able to speak with Eggy while her fingers undid the headaches. Any Forsaken that would NOT use compulsion on an A.S. in her/his control should have their henchman card torn up. We just have to RAFO.

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im still convinced that FOM is rands plan to bind the forces of light to someone else, so they can fight the war while he does his battle, whether or not shes been under compulsion, how powerful was the balefire that killed halima, cos it could have been erased, they should check sheriams fingers to see if they are back

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If you consider that her main goal was to throw the rebel AS into chaos, and keep them from re-joining the Tower, her plan was sound. The one thing none of the Forsaken could have forseen was Egwene's ability to be a GREAT leader. Think about it: who would have thought a 20-something woman would be able to not only do a good job leading a bunch of strong-will channelers, but also clean up the mess that de-throning Siuan caused?

 

Seems to me that Halima didn't have any back up plans, though...

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