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DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

My thoughts after finishing the series last night (spoilers)


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@barid bel medar,

"nynaeve healed the madness not the taint".

nynaeve healed the madness when she removed the taint,

in my opinion,those black spikes inside male channeler's brain are a physical

manifestation of the taint,something akin to a brain tumor,nynaeve didn't remove

the madness,she removed the malignant black spikes,and when those spikes 

were removed the madness was gone.

 

It's just a difference in wording, but it is the same thing. 

 

The Taint caused the black spikes - we'll call em 'Taint Tumours' which induce madness. 

 

The Taint is cleansed by Rand, so it can't cause any more tumours to grow, but the ones that have grown aren't miraculously healed. 

 

Nynaeve healed the residual Taint Tumours, which was the madness. That's why it doesn't contradict the inability to cure insanity. The Taint-driven insanity was not a 'natural' thing, but a tumour that grew because of the Taint - an external force.  

 

 

So the real big question is are the black spikes actually the taint, or just the end product the madness takes on the brain? 

 

If those black spikes is the actual taint, could she even remove that?  After all curing the madness is different then actually removing the DO's taint from the brain.

 

Depends how you look at it. 

 

Personally, I look at it as Machin Shin. It is a 'growth' caused by the Taint.

 

The 'Taint' is the layer of corruption placed on the entirety of Saidin, not little pieces on the brain. I don't believe they are little pieces of the Taint because RJ said that the Taint would never run out. It makes much more sense that it is a layer of corruption that a man has to 'touch' when he uses Saidin. Touching the Taint causes subsequent ailments. Like nuclear radiation, it causes tumours etc.. but the tumour itself isn't radiation. The Taint is a radiation that doesn't go away. 

 

Nynaeve didn't eradicate the 'radiation' just the cancers it caused. 

 

Even so, if you think of it as the Taint itself, then the spikes are at best a fragmented piece of the Taint no longer connected to the original Taint on Saidin. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

What do you think about the death of Siuan? I've read about it all of a sudden just after a phrase used only few pages before from Cadsuane about the weave needed to stop a man's heart. It left me very dissatisfied, for the repetition and for the insignificant death of a character special to me.

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I go the other way on these thing, I always find it annoying in a major series when no main good guy ever bites the dust.  I like it when the good side must make sacrifices.  Not sure her death was insignificant, she did die trying to save mat and min.  I thought her dearth was sort of fitting since she assumed she knew everything and that Min's vision had already been fulfilled only to discover it hadn't.  She never bothered to ask min if the vision was gone.  I would say I am more dissatisfied with Bashere's death, sure you saw it coming, I expected Faile at the end of the series to be queen.  So I assumed both the queen and Bashere were going to bite the dust.  But not even a paragraph about him dying and to simply find out during Rand's battle with the DO.

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@lizzybennet,

siuan sanche is my favorite amyrlin hands down.

her wheel of time journey was extremely difficult,and if one compares it with rand's journey,

it was nothing short of tragic.

at the beginning of our story siuan is the most powerful woman in the world and rand is a nobody.

during a very short period of time,siuan was deposed,stilled and imprisoned while rand was busy

conquering half of randland.

fast forward to the field of merrilor meeting,the shift of power was complete,rand was now the most

powerful man in the world while siuan was clearly not deemed important enough to attend the meeting.

a memory of light is full of bad decisions(storywise),leaving siuan out of the pavilion meeting and omitting

a moiraine-siuan onscreen reunion was one of them.

siuan death hit me the hardest not only because i liked her no-nonsense and never say die attitude,but

also for her ability to find love after so many setbacks.

her(supposedly) insignificant death was not a major issue for me,i was more upset that she died not how

she died,at least it was onscreen.

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Yea, I was disappointed with Bashere's death also.

 

But the amusing thing about it and Faile thus becoming monarch, is that while we had to read 5 or 6 books of Elayne becoming queen of Andor(and ALL the dry politics of it), all of a sudden *BINGO*, Faile is queen of Saldaea. LOL

 

 

Speaking of Saldaea, I did like how Tenobia's death was written.  As Faile pointed out way back in tSR after she lead the attack against the Shadow's forces at Two Rivers to rescue Edmond's Field, noted that her cousin Tenobia was chomping at the bit to lead troops in combat. Then when she gets her big chance at the Last Battle, Tenobia's elite guard is surrounded by Trollocs and she is killed due to one of her generals being manipulated by Forsaken Compulsion.  Really sad way to go. Felt bad for her.

Edited by Cosmic Champion
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Sorry, my mistake. Insignificant was the wrong word, but the death of Siuan imho wasn't on screen. We were following the struggle between mat and the grey man and when that was over we simply discovered that meanwhile siuan found her death all at once, without seeing that coming probably, without fight ... I found it disapponiting.

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I absolutely loved AMoL, but it did have some weak points. I think my biggest complaint was the death of Padan Fain. On the one hand I like the idea that he is a nobody that spends the entire book series pretending to be and trying to become someone important and powerful, yet he meets his demise in mere seconds from a farmboy that he used to look down on. On the other hand, I feel his build up was immense and the end was very anti-climatic.

 

I think it would have been cool if he had stayed out of the last battle entirely, letting his two mortal enemies fight it out and waiting to pounce on whoever remained standing. Maybe even become the evil that's left to plague the world after the Dark One is resealed. I get that Sanderson had to cut some things short to finish the series, but it doesn't make me feel any less unsatisfied.

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Fain wasn't as powerful as it lead up to, yeah anything near him was insta dead but one stream of balefire from someone on a cliff or from an overhead gateway and poof he was gone.  Fain had to die, there was no way he was living.  You look at what he had become and imagine what he would of been like a year or two after the last battle.  Fain eventually would of become unstoppable.

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  • 2 weeks later...

so guys... what exactly did Cads teach the Asha'man? I know she taught Rand to laugh and bend but Min repeatedly said she would teach Rand and the all the Asha'man something they need to learn and they won't like it. What was it that the Asha'man learned and where? 

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my understanding is that the lesson was the same for all of them; not different things.

the lesson I take was not to laugh and bend; but that they were human and not weapons.

 

Rand sent a messenger in Towers of Midnight.  From what I skimmed, I take the message was received off-screen.

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@aziz,

"i know she taught rand to laugh and bend".

seriously? to laugh and...bend? when exactly did she do it?

 

@mb,

"i take the message was received off-screen".

no,rand's message to the black tower was acknowledged on-screen in a memory of light,

"he instructed us to learn one last lesson:that we are not to think of ourselves as weapons,but as men".

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that was one of the scenes I skimmed.

acknowledgement of receiving is not the same as the receiving itself.

 

I guess the other poster was referring to Rand's Dragonmount experience.

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@aziz,

"i know she taught rand to laugh and bend".

seriously? to laugh and...bend? when exactly did she do it?

 

 

wait I'm confused.. are you saying she didn't teach rand either of the two? Wasn't she the cause of the Dragonmount experience which then led to him softening and learning to be more flexible (i.e. bend) which is why he had the successful encounters with the Borderland Rulers. He admits it himself by saying sth along the lines of "had you met me a week back". He also bows to the Crystal Throne as another consequence instead of trying to vanquish them. And the laughing comes with the crying and general softening he experiences. 

 

Considering what a huge figure Cadsuane was portrayed as it's a bit anti-climactic that her "teaching" is just sent off screen to the Asha'man. 

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Cadsuane's problem was exactly what Rand tells her in TOM "You tried to manipulate me, and failed horribly.  But in that failure you have shown me something."  "I thought I was being forged into a sword," Rand said, eyes growing distant.  "Buy I was wrong.  I'm not a weapon.  I never have been."  So it was more about how she went about trying to make him  laugh and cry.  What Min saw the Asha'man and Rand needed to learn from Cadsuane turned out to be you must be human not a mindless weapon. Being Aes Sedai she tried to do it how Aes Sedai always try to do things, through manipulation or simply trying to take control and assume they know better.  Which was the worst possible way to do it with Rand.

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. Being Aes Sedai she tried to do it how Aes Sedai always try to do things, through manipulation or simply trying to take control and assume they know better.  Which was the worst possible way to do it with Rand.

 

This has been well documented in other threads but Cads approach was spot on. She had Rand's back harder than anyone in the series aside from Min perhaps. More so her angle was far away from how other AS were approaching things and it's rather telling that Sorilea and the WO's reached the exact same conclusion.

 

Old post below:

 

In fact we know she did a ton of research on Rand and tested his character and sanity in their first meeting. She fell on a course of action based on the results that the WOs advocated as well.

 

 

"Most men will take what is offered, if it seems attractive and pleasant," Sorilea said. "Once, we thought of Rand al'Thor so. Unfortunately, it is too late to change the path we walk. Now, he suspects whatever is offered freely. Now, if I wanted him to accept something, I would pretend I did not want him to have it. If I wanted to stay close to him, I would pretend indifference to whether I ever saw him again." Once more, those eyes focused on Cadsuane, green augers. Not trying to see what lay inside her head. The woman knew.

 

- The Path of Daggers, New Alliances

 

Here decision on how to proceed was absolutely correct:

 

"If you want to see what a man is made of, push him from a direction he doesn't expect. There's good metal in that boy, I think, but he's going to be difficult." Steepling her fingers, she peered across them at the wall, musing to herself. "He has a rage in him fit to burn the world, and he holds it by a hair. Push him too far off balance .... Phaw! Al'Thor's not so hard yet as Logain Ablar or Mazrim

Taim, but a hundred times as difficult, I fear."

 

- A Crown of Swords, Diamonds and Stars

 

 

After how he was treated by other AS there was no other course of action she could have taken. He would have been distrustful of anything else.

 

But I must wait for him to come to me. You see the way he runs roughshod over Alanna and the others. It will be hard enough teaching him, if he does ask. He fights guidance, he thinks he must do everything, learn everything, on his own, and if I do not make him work for it, he won't learn at all."

 

- Winter’s Heart, Bonds

 

 

It should be noted that Moiraine told Eggy and AVi that this was exactly what Rand needed.

 

Rand will need both of you in the days to come. You handle his temper well – though I may say your methods are unusual. He will need people who cannot be driven away or quelled by his rages, who will tell him what he must hear instead of what they think he wants to.”

 

- The Fires of Heaven, News Comes To Cairhien

 

Towards the end the deterioration of things was mainly do to Rand's psychological darkness, he saw not only Cads but everyone in the worst possible light. The reality is she saved his life multiple times, she backed him to the hilt/executed a perfect defense at the cleansing, and she out of all the AS swore to do what was best for him, not herself or the WT. Compared to all of that calling him "boy"(often when he is acting like a child) is hardly an issue. It may have taken a lucky stroke at the end but Rand himself flat out states she took the correct course:

 

"I was broken," Rand said, hands behind his back. "And then, remarkably, I was reforged. I think he almost had me, Egwene. It was Cadsuane who set me to fixing it...

 

- Towers of Midnight

 

She doesn't care for titles, she hates politicking, and she never suffers fools. It's part of the reason the WO's respect her so much. She keeps her word and swore to do what was best for Rand, not herself or the WT. That is pretty much the exact opposite of every other AS.

 

Oh, yes. Whatever I do, it will be for your own good; not mine, not the good of the White Tower, yours.
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@suttree,

"she had rand's back harder than anyone in the series aside from min perhaps"

no perhaps,ifs,buts or maybes regarding min,during all those months when rand

was spiraling out of control min was his rock,she was his haven and she was his home,

min's unconditional love saved rand and inadvertently saved the world,the only other

person i would even consider including near min's pedestal is nynaeve.

i am well aware of your opinions about cadsuane and i don't share them(no great news here),

for the record,cadsuane was never the solution,she was part of the problem,a BIG part of it.

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have to agree with both of you! Cadsuane played a major role with Rand but without Min's unwavering love and confidence, there would have been nothing left for Cads to salvage.

 

Another point about Cads... why was she approached as the new Amirlyn at the end? Wouldn't a more suitable choice be Moiraine? She's also a legend and has actually been part of finding the DR, killing 2 forsaken and then fighting the DO himself along with DR. Plus she's younger! Why Cads of all people? 

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@suttree,

 

for the record,cadsuane was never the solution,she was part of the problem,a BIG part of it.

1. Again Cads was the single AS who swore to do what was best for Rand. She saved his life multiple times and backed him to the hilt at the cleansing(which saved the world as well and not inadvertently). That said your points about Min are spot on. Didn't mean to suggest otherwise.

 

2. Fair enough if you disagree and think she was the problem. Unfortunately it's not supported by much if anything in the text. what should she have done differently and why? I layed out my case above. Please do the same.

Edited by Suttree
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Though with Cad we saw she very nearly pushed Rand over the edge, her using Tam to go talk to rand for instance almost was the straw that broke the camels back.  I fully agree she is what he needed with her tough love sort of approach.  She had the Aes Sedai arrogance that she knew what was best for him.  In most cases she was right but in some cases I feel it was the wrong tactic. 

Edited by Sabio
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about the Amyrlin choice; Moiraine became weak in the One Power and needed an angreal to be strong.

Cadsuane has also faced Forsaken; Semirhage and Hessalam (Graendal resurrected).  She broke Semirhage, and might have been a help in the breaking of Hessalam.

one reason for Cadsuane might have been that they thought of age being better than beauty; since the 2 last Amyrlins were the youngest ever.  but the main reason seems to the advise they mentioned in the scene.

for young Aes Sedia, Nynaeve and Elayne might also have been good candidates.  yet Elayne is pregnant, and Nynaeve might soon be if she is not already; same for Moiraine as for Nynaeve.  and other young Aes Sedia might soon consider marriage & pregnancy.

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for young Aes Sedia, Nynaeve and Elayne might also have been good candidates.  yet Elayne is pregnant, and Nynaeve might soon be if she is not already; same for Moiraine as for Nynaeve.  and other young Aes Sedia might soon consider marriage & pregnancy.

okay I really, really don't mean to be rude... but hahaha. Goddamn! the same reasons women aren't fast tracked to upper management nowadays still applied in the 3rd age :D didn't realise the White Tower was such a misogynistic corporation :D 

jokes aside I think Nynaeve and Elayne beng sovereigns of other states gave better service to the AS than as the Seat. So they weren't much of a choice for me. And honestly, I didn't realise that power came so much into play with being chosen. Because in that case Egwene was weaker then Nyn. But then they had issues with Nyn stubbornness..

 

I don't know I just feel that it would have been more... complete maybe if Moiraine had been chosen instead. But that's done with. 

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for young Aes Sedia, Nynaeve and Elayne might also have been good candidates.  yet Elayne is pregnant, and Nynaeve might soon be if she is not already; same for Moiraine as for Nynaeve.  and other young Aes Sedia might soon consider marriage & pregnancy.

okay I really, really don't mean to be rude... but hahaha. Goddamn! the same reasons women aren't fast tracked to upper management nowadays still applied in the 3rd age :D didn't realise the White Tower was such a misogynistic corporation :D 

jokes aside I think Nynaeve and Elayne beng sovereigns of other states gave better service to the AS than as the Seat. So they weren't much of a choice for me. And honestly, I didn't realise that power came so much into play with being chosen. Because in that case Egwene was weaker then Nyn. But then they had issues with Nyn stubbornness..

 

I don't know I just feel that it would have been more... complete maybe if Moiraine had been chosen instead. But that's done with.

 

At the time the bigger problem with Nyn was the block and lack of temper control. It doesn't do much for the Rebels if their Amrylin can't channel at will and only when she's angry :)

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