Mik

[Mik's Warp] - Demandred is.....*click to find out*

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I never really dug through the books to find Demandred myself. Ofcourse I followed and participated in the debates on several forums, but Im way more interested in the bigger picture of the Wheel and all things concerning the Dragon and Ishamael. But after recent debates out here about Demandred (the Timolan thread, for instance) and the tongue-in-cheek thread I made for Barid (the mod, not the character) about Demandred and BBM asking some questions about Demandred in general in the new D’mount Chat Room (it’s fun!), it got me thinking…. why not search Demandred myself for a change..?

 

Sure, I’ve read the series and wondered who Demandred could be when I saw a character behave oddly, but I never really whipped my looking glass out, like I enjoy doing with lot’s of other WoT stuff.

So, I decided to search Demandred in the exact same way that I enjoy sifting through the Wheel on topics that I enjoy most…..and you know what?

I think I found him.

 

Here’s how to find Demandred:

Basically, I just did what I do every other time when I try to figure out WoT in general; I take a big, big step back –with all the WoT knowledge just floating in the back of your mind, but not actively using it- and ask myself the question;

‘What are the really important factors and what would I do as a writer to make sure Demandred stays hidden?’

Just writing that bigger picture, I’d do something like this:

  1. Ensure Demandred carved out his own power base that fits with his MO; an army to command;
  2. Ensure that somewhere during the series, that army ‘moves into position’, as a good general –like Demandred- would do;
  3. Make sure that Demandred is able to ‘secure his rule’.
  4. Hide the above clues just so, that they don’t point to Demandred easilly, but make sure some hints are there.

So, how do we find Demandred? By looking for it as if we were the writer who tried to hide it;

  1. Look for an army, where none of the Forsaken that have a clear position seems to be meddling in affairs;
  2. Look for decent strategic positioning of that –somehow- hidden army;
  3. Look for a position within that army that ensures a ‘secure rule’ during the war to come;
  4. Find Demandred by connecting the dots.

So, again just taking a big step back and looking through our eyehairs at Demandred, at the core all he is, is a very good general for the Shadow. So –from a narrators point of view-, who would know the most about how Demandred operates? Again, the answer is simple…another Shadow general that actually ‘worked’ with him, ofcourse.

From the stuff we know about the WoS, we see only three top generals being mentioned; Be’lal, Sammael and Demandred.

 

So, from a writers perspective, Be’lal and Sammael probably will be able to best spot Demandred’s handy work. Undortunately,Be’lal was out of the picture real soon, but we do have a very interesting quote from Sammael when he’s talking to Graendal, that I figured just had to contain enough clues to point at Demandred, since Sammael is convinced he has found Demandred, and –from a writers perspective-. he. should. know!:

 

He cut in sharply. “You deliver a message to Demandred from me. Tell him I know what he is up to.” Events to the south had Demandred’s mark all over them. Demandred had always liked using proxies. “Tell him to be careful. I won’t have him or his friends interfering in my plans.” Perhaps he could direct al’Thor’s attention there; that would likely put an end to him. If other means did not work. “So long as they steer clear of me, his lackeys can carve out what he wants, but they will steer

clear or he will answer for it.”

 

And when I let those words from Sammael mix with the bigger picture of the story and all the quotes/ info that’s in the back of my head, it just hit me;

Demandred is among the Atha'an Miere!

 

It was so simple really. It fits the bigger picture of points 1 and 2 like a glove, I think.

So, -again just thinking of the bigger picture (point 3)-, what position would a top-general of the Forsaken (or any general really) aim for? Again, the answer was easy to find, because among the Atha'an Miere there is only one place that commands all the Sea Folk in battle:

The Swordmaster of the Mistress of the Ships: “The Master of the Blades”

 

And with a little bit of digging (connecting the dots of point 4), we can even give a probable name for Demandred’s alter ego:

 

Amel, Swordmaster to -and husband of- Zaida din Parede Blackwing and Clan Catelar.

 

 

 

Now, let’s look at what I think is the proof in detail:

 

He cut in sharply. “You deliver a message to Demandred from me. Tell him I know what he is up to.” Events to the south had Demandred’s mark all over them. Demandred had always liked using proxies.

I think one of those events Sammael is referring to, is the unusual gathering of hunderds of Sea Folk ships in the south. Around the same time as Sammael voicing his thoughts on Demandred, we get this from Balwer:

Balwer’s eyes never left Niall’s face by so much as a flicker, but Niall knew the tiny ball of paper on the floor would end up in the man’s hands unless he burned it.

“Four things that might be of interest, my Lord. The least first. The rumors about meetings between the Ogier stedding are true. For Ogier, they seem to be showing some haste.” He did not say what the meetings were about, of course; getting a human into an Ogier Stump was as impossible as getting an Ogier to spy. Easier to have the sun rise at night. “Also, there are an unusual number of Sea Folk ships in the southern ports, not taking cargo, not sailing.”

“What are they waiting for?”

 

For a moment Balwer’s mouth tightened as though drawstrings had been pulled shut. “I do not know yet, my Lord.” Balwer never liked admitting there were any human secrets he could not ferret out. Trying to learn more than the surface of what went on among the Atha’an Miere was like trying to learn how the Guild of Illuminators made fireworks, an exercise in futility.

 

And when Nynaeve and Elyane show up in Ebou Dar a few chapters later and speak to Tylin, she confirms Balwer’s spy report, at the very least for Ebou Dar.

“I [Tylin] will send for cool mint tea, and we will talk. You will tell me how I can help—if I send soldiers into the Rahad, it will be the Wine Riots all over again—and perhaps you will even be able to explain why the bay [of Ebou Dar] is full of Sea Folk ships that neither dock nor trade...”

 

In CoT, we find out the same is true for Tear;

The streets are full of armsmen, most getting drunk and picking fights with each other when they’re not fighting Atha’an Miere.

There are as many Sea Folk in the city as everyone else put together. Harine was aghast. She went rushing out to the ships as soon as she could hire a boat, expecting to be declared Mistress of the Ships and set everything to rights. There seems no doubt that Nesta din Reas is dead.”

 

And in KoD, we find out the same is true for Illian;

As far as the eye could see to east and west along the coastline, Atha'an Miere ships lay at anchor, rakers and skimmers, soarers and darters, [all ship types of the Sea Folk] most surrounded by bumboats so cluttered they looked like drunken shore festivals. Rowed out from the city, the bumboats offered for sale everything from dried fruit to quartered beeves and sheep,... They brought rats, too. if not for sale. Anchored so long, every ship was plagued by rats, now. Rats and spoilage [always a good hint for Shadow-meddling!] made sure there was always a market for the peddlers.

There’s Demandred’s army; the Sea Folk, in huge numbers anchored in or just outside all the major ports at the South coast of the continent. The only place where they’re not amassed is where –not coincidently- the Seanchan destroyed a big part of the Sea Folk fleet that was just sitting there since atleast early LoC in the bay near Ebou Dar.

 

Demandred and Semirhage probably staged that, so they could remove the current Mistress of the Ship and the Master of the Blades of the Sea Folk. This made sure that Demandred could manouvre into that key-position and that he could easily lay the blame with the Seanchan and Altara for later attacks. As we see through Mat, the Seanchan hit Ebou Dar (ACoS, Chapter 39), surprising everyone –including the Sea Folk- and we see the heads of the Mistress of the Ships and her Master of the Blades on poles outside the gate of Ebou Dar through Mat again in WH (Chapter 16).

 

And, this ties in nicely with strange behaviour of, and strange events surrounding who is to become the new Mistress of the Ships; Zaida din Parede Blackwing. I think RJ hid Demandred very nicely the first time we actually get to see Zaida. I think this is the only time we actually get to ‘see’ Demandred in the books without actually being ‘on screen’! (Brilliance, RJ… brilliance)

 

Again, we view important events that I think are clues to Demandreds alter ego through Mat’s eyes. I think there’s a good reason RJ choose Mat; he’s the only main character who can very accuratey assess how odd or normal Sea Folk behaviour is, based on all the memories in his head. It’s a very smart way of squeezing in information about what the Sea Folk characters actually do, without making it seem important. I think it is no coincidence we see Mat having a dance in Maerone that has him remember dancing with a Sea Folk ambassador at an important court just moments before we get a glimpse of who Demandred is hiding as;

 

“Mat,” he puffed, shoving fingers through lank hair that kept falling over his forehead.

“Mat... down at the river...”

“What?” Mat cut in irritably. He was going to start having “I am not a bloody lord” embroidered on his coats. “Sammael? The Shaido? The Queen’s Guards? The bloody White Lions? What?”

“A ship, Mat,” Estean panted, raking at his hair. “A big ship. I think it’s the Sea Folk.”

That was unlikely; the Atha’an Miere never took their ships farther from open sea than the nearest port. Still . . . there were not very many villages along the Erinin to the south, and the supplies the wagons could carry were going to run thin before the

 

Band reached Tear. He had already hired riverboats to trail along with the march, but a larger vessel would be more than useful.

 

.../ /...

 

Walking down to the end of the nearest dock, Mat propped his spear on his shoulder and dug his looking glass from his coat pocket. When he put the brass-bound tube to his eye, the ship leaped closer. The Sea Folk appeared to be waiting for something, but what? Some glanced toward Maerone, but most were staring the opposite way, including everyone on the tall quarterdeck; that would be where the Sailmistress was, and the other ship’s officers. He swung the looking glass to the far side of the river, crossing a long narrow rowboat with dark men at the oars, racing toward the ship.

 

There was something of a commotion on one of Aringill’s long docks, nearly the twins of Maerone’s. White-collared red coats and burnished breastplates denoted Queen’s Guardsmen, plainly meeting a knot of arrivals from the ship. What made Mat whistle softly was the pair of fringed red parasols among the newcomers, one of two tiers. Sometimes those old memories came in handy; that two-tiered parasol marked a clan Wavemistress, the other her Swordmaster.

 

“I have a boat, Mat,” Estean announced breathlessly at his-shoulder. “And some rowers.”

Mat turned the looking glass back to the ship. By the activity on deck, they were hauling the small boat up on the other side, but already men at the capstan were hauling the anchor up and the sails were being shaken out. “Looks like I won’t need it,” he muttered.

 

On the other side of the river the Atha’an Miere delegation vanished up the dock with an escort of guardsmen. The whole thing made no sense. Sea Folk nine hundred miles from the sea. Only the Mistress of the Ships outranked a Wavemistress; only the Master of the Blades outranked a Swordmaster. No sense at all, not by any of those other men’s memories. But they were old; he “remembered” that less was known of the Atha’an Miere than of any people except the Aiel. He knew more of Aiel from his own experience than from those memories, and that little enough. Maybe somebody who knew the Sea Folk today could make top from bottom in it. [but –we readers- know the Sea Folk haven’t changed their customs!]

 

Already sails billowed above the Sea Folk ship, with the anchor still being hauled dripping onto the foredeck. Whatever had them in such a hurry, it apparently would not take them back to the sea. With slowly increasing speed the vessel glided upriver, curving toward the marsh-lined mouth of the Alguenya a few miles north of Maerone.

Well, it was nothing to do with him [just funny]. With one last regretful look at the ship—the thing would have carried as much as all the smaller craft he had hired put together— Mat shoved the looking glass back in his pocket and turned his back on the river.

 

A few chapters later, we learn that this Wavemistress is actually Zaida! And even funnier is the fact that we never get to ‘see’ her Swordmaster ever again! We see Zaida, from the moment she enters the story in LoC, Chapter 5 have important apprearances at least once througout the following books (LoC, ACoS, WH, CoT and KoD), but we never get to actually see her Swordmaster again!. We know that he did get on land with her. Also, Zaida stays on land for a long, long time, wich by Sea Folk standards compares to an Aiel choosing to live on a ship out at open sea for months! And she declines staying at the Royal Palace, but prefers an inn?! Weird!:

 

Mistress Harfor approached Rand and curtsied deeply.

“My Lord Dragon,” she said in a deep, strong voice, “there is a petition for audience with you from the Wavemistress of Clan Catelar, of the Atha’an Miere.”

…/ /…

“Sea Folk?” he said. “What do they want?”

She gave him a patient look, trying to make allowances. Very plainly trying. “The petition does not say, my Lord Dragon.”

 

If Moiraine had known anything about the Sea Folk, she had not made it part of his education, but from Reene’s attitude, this woman was important. A Wavemistress certainly sounded important. That would mean the Grand Hall. He had not been there since returning from Cairhien. Not that he had any reason to avoid the throne room; there just had been no need to go there. “This afternoon,” he said slowly. “Tell her I will see her in the mid-afternoon. You’ve given her good apartments? And her retinue?” He doubted anyone with so grand a title traveled alone.

 

“She refused them; they have taken rooms at The Ball and Hoop.” Her mouth flattened slightly; apparently, however lofty a Wavemistress, that was not proper in Reene Harfor’s eyes. “They were very dusty and travelsore, hardly able to stand. They came by horse, not coach, and I do not believe they are used to horses. [A hint at that other Swordmaster –Moad, who can ride horses very well (per WH)- being the Darkfriend we saw at the gathering near SG in the prologue of tGH] ” She blinked as if surprised to have unbent that much, and regained her reserve like donning a cloak.

 

I think there a lot of things that could be considered clues to Zaida’s true alligance, but I’ll focus on Demandred’s position here…Now, for whatever we can come up with, when the Sea Folk find out that Nesta and Baroc were executed, Harine din Togara Two Winds –and her (probably darkfriend) Swordmaster Moad- get derailed by Verin (a known darkfriend that didn’t want to blow her cover at that point) by bringing them to Tear, instead of Illian, where the Twelve gather to pick a new Mistress of the Ships. And as we know per Min, Harine will be the new Mistress of the Ships at one point:

 

“Well, the Sea Folk are delivered to Tear, Cadsuane. I [Verin] didn’t go near the Stone, but I

heard that High Lord Astoril stopped complaining about his creaking joints and mustered inside with Darlin.

…/ /…

[Harine] expecting to be declared Mistress of the Ships and set everything to rights. There seems no doubt that Nesta din Reas is dead.”

…/ /…

Unfortunately, Min must have been listening at the door, and that young woman had little patience. “I told Harine it wouldn’t be like that,” she protested, bursting into the room. “I told her she’d be punished for the bargain she made with Rand. Only after that will she become Mistress of the Ships, and I can’t say if it will be ten days from now or ten years.”

So Harine will receive punishment for her Bargain. But who would become the new Mistress of the Ships then? Harine seems to think that it wouldn’t have mattered for her position that she arrived late in Illian, but still, it was a known darkfriend who brought Harine to the wrong place at first, giving her no time to explain and Zaida and her traveling companions all the time of the world to influence events:

Every time the First Twelve of the Atha'an Miere met since she had attained Illian, she had needed to compose herself before attending. When she reached Tear and found Zaida's Blue Gull still anchored in the river, she had been sure the woman was in Caemlyn yet, or at least trailing far behind her own wake. A painful mistake, that. Though in truth [Doubtfull?!], very little would have been altered had Zaida been weeks behind. Not for Harine, at least. No. No thoughts of Zaida.

In addition to returning with the first of the Aes Sedai agreed to in the bargain for use of the Bowl of the Winds, Zaida also had returned with her own bargain, for land in Andor under Atha'an Miere law, and where Marine's Bargain had been judged wanting, Zaida's had found great favor. That and the fact that Zaida had come straight to Illian via one of those peculiar gateways, woven by her own Windfinder, were not the only reasons that she was now Mistress of the Ships, but neither had hurt her cause.

She was the least senior except for Mareil. seated across from her. But then, Zaida would have sat only one chair farther up had she not gained the sixth fat golden earring for each ear and the chains that connected them. Her lobes might still be sore from the piercings. A pleasant thought.

Hrmmm.. Zaida was ranked just one seat higher then Harine as a Wavemistress, and the arguments Harine can think off had ‘not been the only reasons she was now Mistress of the Ships’. That begs the question… what were those other reasons Zaida won, despite having 10 of the Twelve Wavemistresses outrank her before the meeting in Illian…?

 

Regardless of the suspicious circumstances of how Zaida made it, Zaida IS the Mistress of the Ships now, and with a nice strip of Andoran soil to boot! And that –by default- makes her Swordmaster the new Master of the Blades!

 

So, what does that title mean?

It means that whoever holds that position now, has ‘his rule secure’, as long as there is a war to be fought. And here’s why:

A Wavemistress can be recognized by the greater number of medallions on her nose chain—usually they almost touch each other in a solid line from nose to nose to ear—and by a two-tiered red parasol, fringed in gold, that her attendants carry.

All the clans and septs, as well as the islands themselves, are ruled by a woman known as the Mistress of the Ships. She holds the same authority as any land-based queen, but is chosen not by birth or lineage, but by selection from among the Wavemistresses. She in turn appoints a Master of the Blades, usually her former Swordmaster, and a Windfinder advisor who has authority over all Windfinders. The Master of the Blades has authority over all the Swordmasters, and is responsible for the defense and security of the Atha'an Miere. The Mistress of the Ships can be recognized by her three-tiered blue parasol trimmed in gold fringe as well as a nose chain so thick with medallions that they overlap one another. Her Master of the Blades has a two-tiered parasol in the same colors.

Sea Folk, the: More properly, the Atha’an Miere (AH-thah-AHN MEE-air), the People of the Sea.

They live most of their lives on their ships and strongly dislike going any distance from the ocean.

Relatively little is known of their customs, giving rise to an air of exotic mystery and often to fanciful tales.

Most seaborne trade is carried by Sea Folk ships, which include the fastest by far and most of the

largest, and they are considered by the inhabitants of port cities to be bargainers who outstrip the more widely known Domani. As survival at sea often depends on instant obedience, it should be no surprise that the Atha’an Miere stick strictly to their hierarchy, though there are surprising fluidities at some points. [LIKE IN WAR-TIME!]

The Atha’an Miere are divided into numerous clans, both large and small, each headed by a

Wavemistress. Below her are the Sailmistresses, the ships’ captains of the clan. A Wavemistress has vast authority, yet she is elected to that position by the twelve senior clan Sailmistresses, who are referred to as the First Twelve of that clan, and she can be removed by the order of the Mistress of the Ships to the Atha’an Miere. The Mistress of the Ships has a level of authority any shorebound king or queen would envy, yet she also is elected, for life, by unanimous vote of the twelve senior Wavemistresses, who are called the First Twelve of the Atha’an Miere. (The term “the First Twelve” is also used for the twelve senior Wavemistresses or Sailmistresses present in any gathering.) The position of Master of the Blades is held by a man who may or may not be the husband of the Mistress of the Ships. His responsibilities are the defense and the trade of the Sea Folk, and below him are the Swordmasters of Wavemistresses and the Cargomasters of Sailmistresses, who hold like positions and duties; for each of them, any authority outside these areas is held only as delegated by the woman he serves. Where any vessel sails and when is always up to the Sailmistress, but since trade and finances are totally in the hands of the Cargomaster (or, at higher levels, of the Swordmaster or the Master of the Blades), a close degree of cooperation is required. Every Sea Folk vessel, however small, and also every Wavemistress, has a Windfinder, a woman who is almost always able to channel and skilled in Weaving the Winds, as the Atha’an Miere call the manipulation of weather. The Windfinder to the Mistress of the Ships has authority over the Windfinders to the Wavemistresses, who in turn have authority over Windfinders to the Sailmistresses of their clans. One peculiarity of the Sea Folk is that all must begin at the very lowest rank and work their way up, and that anyone other than the Mistress of the Ships can be demoted by those above, even to the very bottom again in extreme instances

 

My oh my, that’s an awful lot of power! Terms like ‘instant obediance’ & ‘strict hierachy’. Good stuff for a ‘secure rule’, I’d say!

But wait, it get’s even better for our “Master of the Blades”!

Especially when he is married to the Wavemistress / Mistress of the Ships…and especially at times of war!

 

"He wants his whereabouts kept secret for now, Shipmistress. The Forsaken have made efforts to kill him. I am willing to take Harine din Togara with me. however. From what I heard, I think he found her acceptable."

Harine jerked so hard she spilled wine over the back of her hand, then took another long swallow. But. no, Zaida would divorce Amel and marry a ballast stone [grave insult among Sea Folk] before she sent Harine din Togara as her ambassador. Still, even the thought of it was enough to make her tongue stick to the roof of her mouth.

Oh no! Zaida is married to her Swordmaster Amel, and we never ever saw him!

And we’ve learned in tPoD, Chapter 20 that In a Sea Folk marriage, when one spouse must obey the other in public, it is the reverse in private. It is accepted and perfectly normal for other Sea Folk, that Zaida will obey her husband in private. Amel calls the shots already between them and that makes perfect sense if he’s Demandred, but even the rest of the Sea Folk think nothing of it.

 

Again, it’s Mat’s PoV that comes with the killer blow:

Mat snatched it out of her hand before the blade could reach his chest and shoved her [Renaile din Calon Blue Star] back into her chair. He did have quick hands. He could still hold on to his temper, too. No matter how many women thought they could dance him for a puppet, he could—“You listen to me, you bilge stone.” All right; maybe he could not hold it. “Nynaeve and Elayne need you, or I’d leave you for the gholam to crack your bones and the Black Ajah to pick over what’s left. Well, as far as you’re concerned, I’m the Master of the Blades, and my blades are bare.” What that meant exactly, he had no idea, except for having once heard, “When the blades are bare, even the Mistress of the Ships bows to the Master of the Blades.” “This is the bargain between you and me.

”When the blades are bare –at a time of war-, the Master of the Blades calls the shots.

 

"And you?" Moridin asked Demandred.

 

"My rule is secure," Demandred said simply. "I gather for war. We will be ready."

Haha! Amel’s / Demandred’s rule is secure, because he gathers for war!

Tarmon Gai’don is nearly upon us. All blades will be bare! The Sea Folk will –unknowingly- be ‘instantly obedient’ to Demandred, because he is their “Asha’m’hael”, their “Master of the Blades”!

 

 

And ofcourse, once you see it,…. then you can find the little jokes / foreshadowing by RJ;

 

Graendal was confident she knew the plans of every one of the other seven remaining Chosen.

 

Except Demandred.

 

What was that blasted man up to? She'd have traded all of her knowledge of Mesaana's and Aran'gar's doings for even a hint of Demandred's plans.

Oh, that’s classic! Demandred is hiding as a Swordmaster, responsible for all the trade of their clan!

 

Demandred stepped out onto the black slopes of Shayol Ghul, and the gateway, a hole in reality’s fabric, winked out of existence. Above, roiling gray clouds hid the sky, an inverted sea of sluggish ashen waves crashing around the mountain’s hidden peak.

It’s tenious, but we’re talking about one of the best kept secret of WoT here; Demandred views his surroundings ‘in character’, there. Sure, he’s not the only one, but it’s there I think; RJ winking at us! *winks back*

 

He cut in sharply. “You deliver a message to Demandred from me. Tell him I know what he is up to.” Events to the south had Demandred’s mark all over them. Demandred had always liked using proxies. “Tell him to be careful. I won’t have him or his friends interfering in my plans.” Perhaps he could direct al’Thor’s attention there; that would likely put an end to him. If other means did not work. “So long as they steer clear of me, his lackeys can carve out what he wants, but they will steer

clear or he will answer for it.”

Also, a very small one, but still! In the universe that RJ created, you ‘steer’ only one thing; ships! Hello, Sea Folk!

 

Well, there you have it!

What do you think?

Demandred finally busted?

 

Cheerio,

Mik

Edited by Mik

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Excellent to see you formed your theory in full. Loving it. I am inclined to agree now that more evidence is shown. The Master of the Blades in charge in war-time is a good one. It makes sense.

 

You know my position on it and as I said in chat, even if this theory turns out to be incorrect, I think that you have uncovered something massive that I have not seen before on the Forums about Zaida being a possible Darkfriend. I like that Harine is being set up to lead the Sea Folk only Zaida is in the way. What better way to dethrone her as a Darkfriend.

 

Don't forget to add what damage the Sea Folk - the best navel forces in the known world- could do to the coastal cities.

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arent they the only navel force??(other than the seanchen??)

 

Probably the only one that matters since I doubt Tear or Illian have anything significant. And of course the Aiel are hilariously terrified of water. There's always Shara.

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This also gives a reason for Rand beeing their Corramore. So far, Rand hasn't done anything for or to the Sea Folk. He walks in, says "I am your savior, so you need to carry food for me and my troops"... and then nothing. Why is he such a big part of the Sea Folk prophesies, if the arrangement is simply one that can be arranged by any supreme leader of half the known world? Rand, as Dragon, could easily have bartered a trade agreement with the Sea Folk without the need for prophesies to smooth the way.

 

No, Rand still needs to save the Sea Folk, and routing out Demandred from their society would be a big step in that direction.

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Imagine the chaos it would cause, the Sea Folk occupying Tear and Illian (along with Andor they are the "Big 3").

 

Sea Folk are no slouches when it comes to war, we have seen their channelling ability with the Elayne rescue and the escape from Ebou Dar.

 

Darlin and Gregorin are hesitant to meet at Merrilor because they fear a Seanchan attack. We know that won't happen, but what about the Sea Folk. They are greedy enough to do it, if not murder all the citizens, at least claim it and draw the respective armies back. (Because lets face it, I can't see any nation willingly fighting for the Shadow.)

 

With the big three under attack (Caemlyn is burning atm) it would break up the FoM, which Rand would not like one bit.

 

Divide and conquer is the chief rule of war (alright, just a bit of exaggeration). Demandred, as a military man would surely know this. Even if he doesn't retain the Sea Folk's loyalty to the bitter end, just drawing the armies of Tear and Illian away from the FoM would be chaos enough. Besides, he will most likely be commanding the Shadowspawn invasion overall, so it's not like he will actually stay and fight with the Sea Folk to the bitter end.

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Another thing to consider, Rand has LTT's memories now, and he was a great captain in the AoL. When he has Lan trick Mat into studying the map outside Cairhein, Rand has a thought about him being able to command numbers this large. At the time, he suppressed the thought, but now he will embrace that side of him. So, not only does he know Demandred very well, he also has all the combat/military experience that LTT had. He'll be able to see Demandred as easily as Samael did. He'll swoop in take out Demandred in a lightning strike raid, like he did with Rhavin and Samael. Every time he has known exactly where a forsaken was, he has struck out. As soon as he takes a moment to reason out where the others are, he'll take them out. Demandred will be the first.

 

'Course, this assumes he has time to reason anything out. Things are getting hot and he may only have time to react to events, rather than influence them.

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This also gives a reason for Rand beeing their Corramore. So far, Rand hasn't done anything for or to the Sea Folk. He walks in, says "I am your savior, so you need to carry food for me and my troops"... and then nothing. Why is he such a big part of the Sea Folk prophesies, if the arrangement is simply one that can be arranged by any supreme leader of half the known world? Rand, as Dragon, could easily have bartered a trade agreement with the Sea Folk without the need for prophesies to smooth the way.

 

No, Rand still needs to save the Sea Folk, and routing out Demandred from their society would be a big step in that direction.

I didn't add it to the Theory, because I quite often get feedback that I make my explenations to complicated, because I want to take everything into acount.

What's nice about Demandred being with the Sea Folk, is that it fits really well with Semirhages placement and how Graendal just wan't able to find the pair of them.

They were both more tied to the seas then to the land and they were both found among a people that have their own prophecy concerning the Dragon Reborn.

 

When all the puzzle pieces finally fell into place, I -literally- slapped my head for not thinking about this just reading WoT. It's so wierd to consider that a people like the Sea Folk -with their own prophecies- didn't have one of the Forsaken among them, while we see Semirhage among the Seanchan. As far back as TSR (Nyn & Elayne aboard Wavedancer) we get a clue about the prophesies and how those even speak of Aes Sedai (the washing of the Coramoor's feet with Aes Sedai hair), and I still didn't think the Sea Folk important enough, even though their fleet is vast and the Aes Sedai connection to the prophesies, the interaction between Seanchan & Sea Folk, almost begs for a Forsaken Threesome.

 

What's also important I think, is to realize is how important a ship is to the Sea Folk; they view him - the ship- as having a heart and courage and as part of their family. It almost begs for a direct connection to Rand. Rafo I guess!

 

Imagine the chaos it would cause, the Sea Folk occupying Tear and Illian (along with Andor they are the "Big 3").

Don't forget the big strip of Andorran soil that Zaida made part of her bargain with Elayne! I'm sure that strip of land was bargained for because of some ..err.. 'pressure' from her husband/ swordfaster/ Chosen Master. :myrddraal:

 

 

Sea Folk are no slouches when it comes to war, we have seen their channelling ability with the Elayne rescue and the escape from Ebou Dar.

Yup. And don't forget Wavedancer's story of going toe to toe with a Seanchan vessel and comming out on top, despite the Seanchan innitiating the attack (always an advantage).

 

 

Darlin and Gregorin are hesitant to meet at Merrilor because they fear a Seanchan attack. We know that won't happen, but what about the Sea Folk. They are greedy enough to do it, if not murder all the citizens, at least claim it and draw the respective armies back. (Because lets face it, I can't see any nation willingly fighting for the Shadow.)

The Sea Folk have reason enough to attack the Seanchan and even a 'nation' like Altara for (allowing) the murder of their Mistress of the Ships and her Master of the Blades.

 

And here comes the -forehead slap- again; the Sea Folk have their own prophesy. We've already seen how easy it is to tweak prophesy itself or to just interpret prophesy wrong. Sea Folk will fight where their Master of the Blades points, because they 'instantly obey' due to their culture and it's easy to come up with a (wrong) reason that's part of their prophesy. The Coramoor will come and set things right ofcourse (making Harine the new Mistress of the Ships, probably), but only after a lot of harm is done.

 

The Sea Folk even have the Bowl of Winds. Immagine what that could bring; their name for Shai'tan being 'The Father of Storms'. *winks*

 

 

With the big three under attack (Caemlyn is burning atm) it would break up the FoM, which Rand would not like one bit.

 

Divide and conquer is the chief rule of war (alright, just a bit of exaggeration). Demandred, as a military man would surely know this. Even if he doesn't retain the Sea Folk's loyalty to the bitter end, just drawing the armies of Tear and Illian away from the FoM would be chaos enough. Besides, he will most likely be commanding the Shadowspawn invasion overall, so it's not like he will actually stay and fight with the Sea Folk to the bitter end.

It's an Hammer/ Anvil situation, but 'Randland' wide; The Trollocs pouring in from the North (mostly) as a huge hammer.

And Demandreds Sea Folk claiming the Southern part of the map, being the Anvil.

 

 

 

*nods to self and wanders off muttering to the Voice in his head*

(It's real, I swear it! Listen to me, sinners! It's real!)

Edited by Mik

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Very well presented and interesting theory and one I have not seen beforehand. Another clue that has been discussed on the boards occured to me. In WH, during the Forsaken gathering, Aran'gar says that Osan'gar and Demandred were responsible for watching Al'Thor. Considering the Bargain between Al'Thor and the Atha'an Miere included the accompaniment of a Sea Folk ambassador along with her retinue, and considering further the presence of a potential DF (the respective Swordmasters) included in each of the embassies to the two cities Al'Thor was most frequently residing in at the time. Hmmmmmm.....not a bad way to be keeping an eye on Al'Thor.

 

Another thought - it appears this would align with Dem's presence in the throne room of Caemlyn in T'a'R (LoC Ch. 7), time-wise for Amel's arrival in the city.

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That line from Sammuel has always bothered me about Demandred and his events from the south. The Sea Folk does make sense. I think that you might have found them. I only know that it will be a lot of fun reading the last book to confirm the theory.

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Very well presented and interesting theory and one I have not seen beforehand. Another clue that has been discussed on the boards occured to me. In WH, during the Forsaken gathering, Aran'gar says that Osan'gar and Demandred were responsible for watching Al'Thor. Considering the Bargain between Al'Thor and the Atha'an Miere included the accompaniment of a Sea Folk ambassador along with her retinue, and considering further the presence of a potential DF (the respective Swordmasters) included in each of the embassies to the two cities Al'Thor was most frequently residing in at the time. Hmmmmmm.....not a bad way to be keeping an eye on Al'Thor.

Yup!

I think Zaida is a Darkfriend (there's much pointing in that direction)

Also, we have Moad -Harine's Swordmaster, with a lot of influence in her direction- that's part of Harine's Ambassador embacy. I think it's Moad that we saw back in TGH (the DF social) and that Ba'alzy commanded him to help Demandred understand Sea Folk society eventually. The clues with the tatooed hand & the horse riding in WH aren't put there for nothing, I think.

Through Moad & by controlling Zaida first.. and later having Zaida become the Mistress of the Ships, Demandred has kept an eye on Rand and 'secured his rule'.

 

Another thought - it appears this would align with Dem's presence in the throne room of Caemlyn in T'a'R (LoC Ch. 7), time-wise for Amel's arrival in the city.

Oh, that's a sweet connection, FanoLan! The one where he spies on Elayne, right? +1

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I'm liking this - even if the Seafolk can't be made to attack Illian or Tear, they would definately attack the Seanchan, and that's a large, experienced army that the 'good' guys could really use!

 

It also gives the Sea folk an actual reason to be in the books.

 

I'm not sure I'd go with the Hammer and anvil, it's more fighting a war on two fronts as the area is so vast, think WW1, 2.

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I was more skeptical when you first present it to me, but now, thinking of all the possible clues that point towards it, I am actually thinking it is a very very big possibility. It is the best theory I have seen on par perhaps with Roedran. I am still undecided which of the two is more likely, but both of them are leading the race for me.

 

Personally, the Sea Folk make more sense than Murandy. I see more potential for Chaos. Murandy involves the Murandian army actually staying loyal to Demandred to fight. As the King of Murandy, he has command over the nation, but ultimately it is futile, no army will fight for the Shadow, not a whole nation. Sure, it gives the Shadow a staging point, but all that effort is wasted when the Murandians figure stuff out. Then Demandred loses all of his power in one stroke, making his fight for the Throne very much diminished.

 

The Sea Folk, however, can be used and discarded. Remembering Sammael's comments about Demandred liking to use proxies? How about Zaida, his "wife" is to blame for it. It fits exactly with the movements of his alliance with Semirhage and Mesaana. Semirhage posed as Truthspeaker - a power behind the throne. Mesaana posed as a random Aes Sedai using the Black Ajah (specifically Aliviarin) - the power behind the White Tower. It would make sense then that Demandred would be the power behind the Sea Folk, using Zaida as a cover.

 

 

That is the other thing that bugged me about Roedran, the fact that nobody notices that there is a Forsaken ruling. Be'lal Rhavin and Sammael were extremely obvious. Even Graendal, Semirhage and Mesaana were to an extent. How would nobody notice Murandy. Sure, we have the offhanded comments about Murandy, but no real suspicion. There is no way anyone can rise to power and prepare for the Shadow and nobody go "hang on, what's the go here! This ain't right!" Unless Demandred is far more awesome than even I think (which I wouldn't mind I suppose).

 

 

Unlike Sammael, Be'lal and Rhavin, who were instantly discovered because of the obviousness of it all. Random lords arriving and becomming all powerful. No, Demandred uses a "real" person to legitimately secure power. And the funny thing is, all he has to do is get a "wife" (likely a complicit DF) and sit back and wait for Tarmon Gaidon without using his influence to draw attention to himself, while freeing his schedule to do the "lots of cool things" that Brandon has said he is up to.

 

Plus, he doesn't need to stay with the Sea Folk. Once they obey his orders to attack Illian and Tear (or wherever he decides to strike) his job is done. He doesn't even need to make then invade or attack. There is one Ace card he could pull (among many others, I'm sure). Fake reports that say the Seanchan are planning to attack Illian and Tear (which is the main hesitancy for the two leaders going to Merillor). Faking a report to Darlin and Gregorin wouldn't be that effective, since the Seanchan won't show any signs of movement, because they aren't actually going to attack. HOwever, convincing the Sea Folk, who must obey the Master of the Blades in war to "occupy the cites for their own defence" (the Sea Folk hate Seanchan) will have far more effect. Sea Folk taking your city beats a flimsy report about a possible Seanchan attack.

 

Once their usefulness has passed, they can be destroyed along with everyone else, while Demandred is home free with a bunch of Shadowspawn and a whole lot of Chaos.

Edited by Barid Bel Medar

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Well done Mik, very thorough per usual. One knock I can think off the top of my head however is Brandon claiming he has seen people figure it out on the message boards. He doesn't spend all that much time around the sites and I'm certain I've never seen Amel or the Sea Folk mentioned before. One other thig of note, when Sammael says to the south you have to take into account where the forsaken meeting is. Regardless nice one...

Edited by Suttree

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Very well presented and interesting theory and one I have not seen beforehand. Another clue that has been discussed on the boards occured to me. In WH, during the Forsaken gathering, Aran'gar says that Osan'gar and Demandred were responsible for watching Al'Thor. Considering the Bargain between Al'Thor and the Atha'an Miere included the accompaniment of a Sea Folk ambassador along with her retinue, and considering further the presence of a potential DF (the respective Swordmasters) included in each of the embassies to the two cities Al'Thor was most frequently residing in at the time. Hmmmmmm.....not a bad way to be keeping an eye on Al'Thor.

Yup!

I think Zaida is a Darkfriend (there's much pointing in that direction)

Also, we have Moad -Harine's Swordmaster, with a lot of influence in her direction- that's part of Harine's Ambassador embacy. I think it's Moad that we saw back in TGH (the DF social) and that Ba'alzy commanded him to help Demandred understand Sea Folk society eventually. The clues with the tatooed hand & the horse riding in WH aren't put there for nothing, I think.

Through Moad & by controlling Zaida first.. and later having Zaida become the Mistress of the Ships, Demandred has kept an eye on Rand and 'secured his rule'.

 

Another thought - it appears this would align with Dem's presence in the throne room of Caemlyn in T'a'R (LoC Ch. 7), time-wise for Amel's arrival in the city.

Oh, that's a sweet connection, FanoLan! The one where he spies on Elayne, right? +1

 

Yes, that's the one. Also, the Sea Folk get a square mile at Cairhien and any other city under Rand's rule that's on water, IIRC. Have we seen/heard about pressure from the Sea Folk to secure that land at other cities? Would be a huge benefit for the Dark to have prepared, defended and secure entry points - via water, or Gateway.

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Well done Mik, very thorough per usual.

*tips hat* Thanks! (Epic, eh? LOL)

 

One knock I can think off the top of my head however is Brandon claiming he has seen people figure it out on the message boards.

I'm sure -as with most comments by RJ or BS that are very much plot related- I can think of a way around that, Aes Sedai style. Drop that quote in this thread, and I'll tear it apart for you. Just like I love to do with those quotes regarding Taim. The Devil is in the Details, Sut. It's a simple as that! :)

 

He doesn't spend all that much time around the sites and I'm certain I've never seen Amel or the Sea Folk mentioned before. One other thig of note, when Sammael says to the south you have to take into account where the forsaken meeting is. Regardless nice one...

I think the Forsaken 'meeting' (just Granny and Sammy IIRC) is in (what we later find out) Natrin's Barrow. I think if you draw a line straight to the south of there, you'll end up in Ebou Dar....or close enough for 'the South' being able to say that 'the Sea Folk as a whole or the Sea Folk at Ebou Dar' as a more then plausable answer. Edited by Mik

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It might also hint slightly at why the Sea folk have become quite so antagonistic towards the Aes Sedai, and quite frankly all of the population. Afterall if you can make people despise and not give a damn about a group of people as long as they arent causing you grief, they arent going to start trying to work with them as much as they might have done.

 

This sort of alienation is essential to make any sort of workings between the AS and the Windfinders traumatic at best

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an interesting theory, Mik. much better than many others I've seen like the Timolan one. A few problems I see with it.

 

RJ and BS said that Demandred's alter ego has never been seen on screen before TGS. Mat saw Zaida's swordmaster through his looking glass, however briefly.

 

Also, Amel is only mentioned once by name and that in KoD which came out in 2005. RJ said in an interview from 2001 that we should be able to figure out who Demandred is hiding as. That's before either CoT or KOD were published.

Edited by herid

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an interesting theory, Mik. much better than many others I've seen like the Timolan one.

Hey herid. Thanks!

 

A few problems I see with it.

 

RJ and BS said that Demandred's alter ego has never been seen on screen before TGS. Mat saw Zaida's swordmaster through his looking glass, however briefly.

Nope. Mat sees the two tiered parasols and knows -from his memories- that must mean that a Wavemistress and her Swordmaster are present. He doesn't "see" the person; he sees something that tells him the person must be there, by knowing the Sea Folk protocols. So no, Amel wasn't 'on screen', but we know he was there. :)

 

Also, Amel is only mentioned once by name and that in KoD which came out in 2005. RJ said in an interview from 2001 that we should be able to figure out who Demandred is hiding as. That's before either CoT or KOD were published.
That's fine; we could have figured it out with all the books up untill -and inclduing- LoC alone. I'm betting my left kidney RJ didn't impy we could name the character. Just that we could find who Demandred was posing as. And we could tell; Zaida's Swordmaster.

 

We only get a name and the fact that he's most probably married to Zaida (since why else would the word 'divorce' be used?) after LoC. I think we had enough up front.

Edited by Mik

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Sorry to be the nay sayer but Amel cannot be Demandred, he made a brief appearance in Lord of Chaos with Zaida in chapter 5, his name was not mentioned but Mat's memories labled the two parasoled individuals as Wavemistress and Swordmaster. We know that Demandred's alter ego has not made a physical appearance in the books so there is no way Amel could be him.

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an interesting theory, Mik. much better than many others I've seen like the Timolan one.

Hey herid. Thanks!

 

A few problems I see with it.

 

RJ and BS said that Demandred's alter ego has never been seen on screen before TGS. Mat saw Zaida's swordmaster through his looking glass, however briefly.

Nope. Mat sees the two tiered parasols and knows -from his memories- that must mean that a Wavemistress and her Swordmaster are present. He doesn't "see" the person; he sees something that tells him the person must be there, by knowing the Sea Folk protocols. So no, Amel wasn't 'on screen', but we know he was there. :)

 

Also, Amel is only mentioned once by name and that in KoD which came out in 2005. RJ said in an interview from 2001 that we should be able to figure out who Demandred is hiding as. That's before either CoT or KOD were published.
That's fine; we could have figured it out with all the books up untill -and inclduing- LoC alone. I'm betting my left kidney RJ didn't impy we could name the character. Just that we could find who Demandred was posing as. And we could tell; Zaida's Swordmaster.

 

We only get a name and the fact that he's most probably married to Zaida (since why else would the word 'divorce' be used?) after LoC. I think we had enough up front.

 

 

Sea Folk are very prideful, and forsaken even more so, they would not allow someone to pretend to be them. He saw the parasols among the new comers, he saw the individuals through his spy glass but he did not see details.

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