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DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

Eht Slat Meit

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Everything posted by Eht Slat Meit

  1. With Elayne, I would expect the obvious - Birgitte's death. For Mat, possibly balancing his distrust of channeling in genearl and Aes Sedai in specific with his acknowledgement of the fact that they are an integral part of his life.
  2. Well, no. I don't believe it was a cliffhanger, as I outlined above. I said I looked at the evidence presented and understand why they perceive it as such. I don't believe in dismissing people's perspectives out of hand, yours or theirs and I'm actually in some agreement with you on this. However, you're not providing substance to your arguments and that's a pattern I've noticed from you in this discussion thread because you've argued a several points with me. You say (paraphrased), "No, it isn't so. THIS is the way it is." despite the fact that your point is objectively wrong. Had you supported your point, given it substance with material from the books or WoG, you wouldn't have had that problem. In short, support your claims and make an attempt to understand where your opponent is coming from without simply saying "No" or dismissing them outright without support as if you were the WoG himself.
  3. Addressing your questions/arguments: 1. "Fain's" status in ToM is not an update or a power-up. It's a picture of a creature in degenerative transition. I'm not sure how that would be painted in psychological terms, but basically both personalities in his head are dead. The WoT equivalent is killing LTT and Rand off while leaving the body alive. At this point he is essentially an unnamed Shaisam. 2. The abilities that allowed former incarnations of Shaisam to successfully track and manipulate its way to Rand are of extremely limited usefulness in the Blight and he wouldn't have the mental capacity to use a lot of them anyway. The Waygates are useless - he no longer has quick transit to wait in ambush. His tracking skills require him to wade single-handedly in a MORTAL shell directly to Rand, who is completely surrounded by warring powers. Most of the Trollocs and Fades have been claimed for the Last Battle(s) - he has no army to call on and couldn't lead them properly anyway. Any army that "Mordeth" could have gotten control of is now in battle and he doesn't have Mordeth to call on anyway - Mordeth is dead. What this means - Shaisam has a radar screen and is blindly wandering his way across it. 3. "Changed a lot" The last time Fain changed was between WH and ToM. Between ToM and AMoL there is almost no change; he's still a creature of madness, both Fain and Mordeth are dead, and he still has his killer fog powers. 4. Where is he? He's the Walking Dude, because he's got no Waygates. No Gates. No Fades. In short, he's taking the long road from whatever Waygate still survives deepest in the Blight and getting there "ahead" of Rand is in question. 5. With Fain's death, I'm not even sure he has the Shadow Hound abilities other than the most rudimentary sense. Either way his effectiveness has been severely curtailed. 6. "Abrupt death" - Agreed. It felt very lusterless; Fain is on foot, walking his way through armies of Light and Dark and should be wreaking some kind of havoc as he goes. Some sense of that would be nice; and the ambush would not have been sacrificed. Basically we agree on quality, but for different reasons. I don't consider ToM a cliffhanger in any way anymore. It is a statement of a character's transitional process that has been ongoing throughout the books and before the books. 7. "Then he dies" - You say it doesn't follow, but I disagree completely on this. It's follows and is completely in sych with Fain's story arch throughout the books. Why? Because if we look at "Fain" as more than just a label, it isn't Fain. It's Mordeth the Counseller. It's Mordeth the Spectre. It's Fain. It's Fain the Shadow's Hound. It's Ordeith the Wormwood, a bitter mix of Fain and Mordeth. It's Jeraal Mordeth the Counsellor again, tracking Rand with Fain's powers and manipulating encounters into being. Fain and Mordeth die, and it's become Shaisam the Unnamed Mashadar. And in the end, it was all three again, pieces of each, a creature with many identities, all of them dead and still alive, ended at the stroke of its own knife. Looking at Fain as one creature is a mistake.
  4. I'll provide some, but I'm also going to debunk it. Fain's bravado can be taken seriously because he's not jut Fain, but Mordeth. That makes him the man that is single handedly not only responsible for shutting down the Shadow but making it afraid of him and the city he lived in. He's responsible for maiming the Prince of Manetheren and likely part of the cause of Manetheren's downfall. He's the guy that makes the most powerful monsters everyone else fears run away, terrified. He is part and parcel of a creature that brought down one of the Forsaken. He successfully protected the Dragon Reborn from enemies mundane and Forsaken. He brought down one Great Captain and is probably responsible for the downfall of two Amyrlins. He turned about three nations into pits of chaos. Dude's got a resume. However, dude's also dead, replaced by Shaisam. He's got nothin' that a couple of scary monsters named Mashadar and Machin Shin don't have, and in some ways far less because you can stick a knife in him and make him die.
  5. As far as supporting your ideas, I'm referring to points in this discussion where you've argued points with me on related issues without book evidence or WoG to back them. The cliffhanger discussion is something I'm weighing in on as a new participant now as I was not involved in most of it. In respect to the ToM scene, I can see why people might consider it a step up in power for Fain. He just wrecked one of the most powerful creatures in the Blight and now the rest of the Worms are scared of him. That's pretty hardcore. It's also not really new, and not a huge accomplishment. While Worms are a serious threat to the Borderlanders, that threat comes from a lack of real competition. There are now Battle Sedai at war and Asha'man on the loose, and most of the more powerful ones could probably kill at least one reasonably well. But as far as making him a credible powerhouse threat to Rand? I guess if Rand couldn't channel and couldn't get away, the tendrils might be a problem. As it was, the one opportunity Fain got under that circumstance got fouled up. The Dark One itself? Not a chance. A Forsaken? Mashadar already did one in. Redundant. My only real gripe is the lusterlessness of Fain's end, but I don't feel he should have been Captain Killface on the battlefield. He never made himself a real army, and settles for singular acts of extreme violence to establish credibility. The REAL damage that he did was as Mordeth, and as Fain. Not as Shaisam, losing both elements of what made him most dangerous. I think Fain's greatness is a matter of relativity. In the endgame where Rand is death walking facing the cream of the Dark One's crop, Fain is just a wild card and one that was already played to devastating effect early in the game. Back in the beginning when it was just a trio of farm boys running around scared in a world of mysterious threats, Fain was the the known threat, and one who came out of the starting gate hard - the most dangerous threat ever known to the Shadow short of the Dragon Reborn coupled with one of the Shadow's own hounds.
  6. Honestly, despite his inability to support most of his ideas with supporting text or WoG, I'd have to agree with Finnns that it's not a cliffhanger, but in saying so, I also have to agree with you about looking at the scene as a whole, and go further in having you look at the ENTIRE story of Fain & Mordeth as a whole. What I see, when looking at that apparent cliffhanger scene is a character that has DEVOLVED, not evolved, and is slowly turning into Shaisam, the walking equivalent of Mashadar, which while slightly a step up in power, is a serious step down in character. Mordeth, the clever mastermind is dead. Fain, the Shadow's hound is dead. All that is left is a walking killer husk very much like the Black Wind, but more like Mashadar, which is a mindless mass of hate-filled killer fog, with no purpose but to kill. Unlike Mashadar, however, Shaisam is mortal and dies.
  7. Good leader of the Asha'man, and not worthy as the Dragon because he wasn't given the background. Rand sought to save the world because he saw it as a duty, and hopefully to save his life in the process. Logain sought to save the world, but only for the power and glory. Ironically, it took Logain turning his back on power to match the Dragon to achieve both.
  8. Again, as I said, there is no question that he was more than capable of conceiving elaborate plans and schemes. That was never the issue. The issue was actually carrying them out to the end. His insanity granted him the attention span of a young child with ADD. He thought up and even managed to start a lot of grand schemes. Finish them however...not so much. The only greatness Fain ever achieved was in his own mind. Most readers, myself included, were suckered in by his self proclaimed and completely false grandeur. Again, I can only tell you how I felt at his demise. At first, like most, I felt disappointed by it but then I thought about it. Thought about what he ever actually accomplished and it took very little thinking to realise that his demise was proper and fit perfectly. Even his last thoughts, that he was too powerful and his greatness to vast to end like it did. In the end, don't blame BS for the way Fain met his fate, blame RJ or really, blame yourself for letting RJ fool you in the first place. Cause fool us he most certainly did. Again, we're in disagreement. Mordeth's schemes accomplished EXACTLY what they were intended to - all except one. The problem is, accomplishing those schemes was completely unable to help him accomplish the goal he wanted most. What was the point of those schemes? To frustrate the Forsaken and to protect Rand from those most likely to seek his harm. Sounds bizarre, but we as the reader know that WAS one of his priorities because nobody but NOBODY gets to kill Rand but Fain. Problem is, he's a manipulator and a politician, not a leader of armies, and as such completely incapable of mustering the actual power he needed to accomplish his primary goal. I'm not even sure we saw a master scheme for how he was supposed to kill Rand other than a slice of the dagger, which while certainly harsh was proven insufficient to the task. That's pretty consistent for Mordeth - he's a big thinker, but all of his schemes while successful in the short run, have only ended in disaster. He only stopped the Shadow long enough to kill himself and everyone within the bounds of Aridhol, and only stopped Rand's enemies long enough to save Rand and kill himself in the process. Par for the course. Fitting, even if his ending seemed far more condensed and meaningless than his other scenes. Maybe that was BS, maybe it was RJ - don't know, don't care, and don't hold it against either. Given the amount of damage Mordeth did directly in the process of successfully achieving his lesser goals, I'd say that puts him levels above most of the Forsaken, and way above everyone else short of the Seanchan. Problem for Shaisam's death in my mind is the same as his life - you have to read way too much between the lines to really enjoy the impact. RJ did tell the story, but he told it in fragments of fragments.
  9. Actually, he objectively did do an incredible amount of damage, but unfortunately RJ left it to extremely short passages of one sentence or slightly more that you have to read way into to realize exactly what he accomplished. He was directly responsible for Pedron Niall's shenanigans which had serious world-based consequences, after all. Indeed. Those saying he wasn't responsible for anything are greatly oversimplifying the situation. They were side effects of his passing/touch. He didn't go out of his way to "infect" Niall or Eladia. He went to the Children so he would have a force he thought capable and willing to assail The Two-Rivers in an attempt to draw Rand to him. He went to the white Tower to retrieve the Dagger. The entity Fain became certainly had the intelligence and capability to conceive of elaborate schemes pertaining to long range goals. Actually carrying any of them out a midst the Chaos and insanity that was Fain is a whole other story. Everything and anything Fain accomplished or, mostly tried to accomplish, were short term in nature period. He didn't control the Chaos he created, he couldn't! I think you're under the mistaken impression that the man has some evil disease (RJ debunked communicability, note). Nor am I talking about powers like his ability to create illusion, use fog or just having some dark miasma. I'm talking about an actual, genuine set of skills that Mordeth possessed prior to attaching himself to Fain. That's real skills, like blacksmithing, leatherwork or politicking. WoG here - RJ pointed out that Mordeth is accustomed to gaining the ears of the mighty, and that's certainly substantiated by the distant past and modern company he got himself into. He was a counselor/advisor; that was his specific skill set. Perrin makes stuff out of metal, Mordeth makes connections with people. One of those connections he made was with Pedron Niall. The direct result of this connection was that despite being half nuts, Niall recognized his counsel as particularly clever and acted on it. Directly substantiated by a passage from the books, TDR Prologue "But he was clever. It was he who helped Niall see the pattern emerging in events." That's what I mean about Fain's build-up. He's given a lousy sentence that outright states what he's doing but it's PRIOR to the actual chaos he directly helped create so the reader isn't likely to pick up on it without falling back. Niall later compared his assistance of Rand the so-called false dragon by creating chaos as something to the affect of letting loose a lion in the streets and then killing the lion. High blasphemy, but all for the good of the cause, really. If I recall, without looking, Niall's actions directly protected Rand (so that Fain could kill him himself, of course), set three nations into chaos, left them open to the Seanchan, and got a Great Captain killed, leaving the Whitecloak armies without worthy or competent leadership. That's just the tip of an iceberg with Fain. Again, direct result of his special entirely human set of skills.
  10. It seems so wrong to mention RJ's Fallon Trilogy here, but shoot. Doing it anyway!
  11. That depends - we're talking about roughly the same period that the male channelers all went nuts, right? You want multiple Dragonmounts or just one?
  12. Actually, he objectively did do an incredible amount of damage, but unfortunately RJ left it to extremely short passages of one sentence or slightly more that you have to read way into to realize exactly what he accomplished. He was directly responsible for Pedron Niall's shenanigans which had serious world-based consequences, after all.
  13. #1 Seve and Jaril. Rest in no particular order: Rand's attempt at resurrecting the dead girl. Olver's trying to escape from the trollocs. Rhurc getting whacked by Aviendha. Friendly fire is just cold way to die. Lan. Living took the sting out of it. Birgitte's death would have had more bite if I didn't instantly envision her coming back by blowing the horn.
  14. People were too scared to use the Choedan Kal, actually. But I agree that adding this in for Sakarnen just feels off. Certainly true, but they were going to use the CK (although they had a healthy fear of doing so). In fact, thats why they built it. Its an open question as to why you would build a weapon you would never use, even in the last extreme. Especially when you were busy building weapons even more powerful that you did intend to use. Nuclear weapons and the real life guiding principle that people are too simultaneously smart/stupid for their own good immediately comes to mind.
  15. It feels to me like Fain's work on behalf of the forces of Light was entirely a byproduct of his unwillingness to let anyone other than himself kill Rand - there's really not much in the way of suggesting that either Mordeth or Fain gave a fig about anything other than their personal goals. As far as Mordeth's ability to kill Shadowspawn and not Mat, it's heavily implied throughout the books that Mordeth's powers include some sort of rough control over Shadowspawn. That makes some sense as Shadowspawn creatures are the result of Aginor's experimentation on natural creatures and Modeth's abilities are suggested to go down that same path. The tendency is to think of Shadowspawn as creatures of the Dark One, but that's not precisely true, and the most the Dark One ever seems to have to do with them is taking one as its personal host, a completely unsustainable relationship.
  16. I tend to believe that there's more to Mordeth/Fain's presence in the story than meets the eye - he's acted as a very real spoiler for some serious threats to Rand throughout the books. List that immediately comes to mind from looking at his bio: 1. Two of the Shadow's top hunters eliminated or sent on snipe hunts - Fain himself as the Shadow's hound, and Slayer (as commented on in AMOL) wasting his time trying to track down Fain as an ongoing and secondary objective. 2. He assassinated Turak's so'jhin, likely the reason why Rand and company were able to stumble unseen onto the premises. No telling how much effect Turak handling Fain's ruby dagger had on his fight with Rand. 3. He counselled and corrupted Pedron Niall in a fashion that led the man to completely remove the Whitecloaks as a threat to Rand, and caused the Whitecloaks to cripple both the nations of Altara and Tarabon, making them easy meat for the Seanchan. Not that they were a huge threat, but setting the ball rolling matters when there's a press for time and prophecy. 4. The attack on Two Rivers basically set Perrin on the path to generalship. 5. Directly responsible for widening the schism between Elaida and Alviarhin, right under Mesaana's nose, eventually sending a corrupted Elaida down the road of having Alviarhin investigated for treason and the Black Ajah rooted out of the Tower. And of course seriously damaging the Tower's influence by encouraging her to put strings to one close to Rand. I'm presuming that's Moiraine as Fain probably wouldn't know about Elayne and those were the only two that Elaida immediately went after. 6. Fain's attack on Rand led to the cleansing of the Light. 7. Basically he was the king of all wrecking balls, unintentionally working for the forces of Light while being his plain old evil insane self, and when RJ was done with him, he fed him to Mat for some good old fashioned Manetheren Payback. 8. For some reason he wiped out a good number of some of the most powerful creatures in the Blight right before the final battles. Given that most of his strength stems from his toxic influence, it's appropriately that he died the way he did, though the sequence was very much anti-climactic.
  17. The actual quotes were these: "Did Mordeth go to the Finns?" ~ Answer: YES. (BS) "Padan Fain will be seen again. He's a mixture of two things—Mordeth's power, which he got by seeking out all of the evil things that weren't related to the Shadow, and the Dark One's Hound. Brandon said that Fain's number one goal is to kill Rand, and a close second is to kill the Dark One." (BS) "He was seeking things that were related to the Shadow. I think that that might be a misquote. He was looking into the power of the Shadow in order to defeat it, was his goal. He was looking into everything. He was looking into things that were not necessarily related to the Dark One as well. He was looking for everything that he could get." (BS) Anyway, it boils down to three sets of powers, probably not fully listed here and possibly inexact.: 1. Mordeth's powers, gained from answers to his questions gleaned from the 'Finns at Sindhol prior to his counsel at Aridhol. a. Basic Illusion b. Drawing Mashadar c. Power over unnatural creations ala Trollocs etc. 2. Fain's powers, as the Shadow's Hound a. Tracking Rand b. Safe passage, dark 3. Shaisam's powers, those developed as an amalgamation of the two men. a. Soot-stain viewing - Darkfriends at a glance. b. Advanced illusions c. Mashadar tendrils d. Toxic influence
  18. Run this by those who are currently starving, being raped and murdered. And if their response is that all people should be turned into mindless robots in order to stop the rape and the murder from ever happening again, I'd say that their situation has completely clouded their judgment. Returning evil to those who have done nothing wrong to you over evil you have received from evil people is completely unjustifiable in a fully reasoning and rational mind. Bear in mind also that the person committing this crime... cough service for mankind... is a fundamentally flawed human being without even the supposedly saintly motivations and perfection of ideology that a benevolent deity theoretically possesses. But it's all "magic" so it should work out perfectly, right?
  19. The problem is the relativity of "best possible consequences" it's best for results of compulsion, not for individual initiative left untinkered with. I would argue that if the best possible result of such a Compulsion is that a highly competent and intelligent person is turned into a vapid fool capable only of performing "baby-care competitions" - this, in a world post-Battle, requiring leadership in rebuilding.... ... then the results aren't worth much at all. Yeah, I do consider turning the world into more mindless versions of Paris Hilton a fate worse than starvation and the cycle of pain, particularly when it has no chance of ever getting better. Dark One's victory indeed.. I
  20. My speculation would be that they're getting them from the stunted trees seen in TSR, ch 36, that seem to be RJ's version of a real world cactus. For as short as the spears are described to be, and the Aiel skill in sharp knives and with blacksmithing, I'm guessing they wouldn't have much problem taking cuttings for spears. The trees are described as rare by Rand's PoV but he's also not a a native Aielman and wouldn't know the whole of the Waste or places where it might be more populous and native to various regions.
  21. On that note about character flaws, one that really totally grated on me throughout the series is Rand's aversion to hurting women. Seriously, here is a guy that is surrounded by every sort of hardcore female capable of kicking as much butt as any guy, he has a history of being surrounded by some of the foulest and most vicious women ever born, and yet throughout it all he simps over and nurses a ridiculous vibe about protecting women and not hurting them. I could seriously see Lanfear slaughtering a room full of children in front of him until he finally does something and then adds her name to "The List". I realize they're all meant to have character flaws, Perrin and his obsesssiveness over Faile, Mat's irresponsbility bordering on ignornace and all the forenamed flaws of the female leads, but there's a point of overkill.
  22. Moiraine, Thom and Lan, along with Moiraine's instruction to Egwene were what hooked me in, the Shadar Logoth arc locked me on for the long haul.
  23. Polygamy and polyarmory aren't all that unrealistic or unique, but yeah - romance hasn't been RJ's strong suit in either of his series, trending more to creepy than anything else. Could buy into it with Aviendha since it's a cultural norm, and I could see it maybe happening with a "best friend", but throwing a third woman into the mix just seemed awkward and forced. Min never came across as the type who would be open to that sort of thing, even grudgingly, after they all got wise to the situation. I get the distinct impression RJ was trying to fit it into his various mythological underpinnings and fumbled the ball.
  24. If "the people" want a figurehead who does what they tell him to do, when they want him to do it, they should have called forth Basil Gill instead of Perrin Goldeneyes. As it is, the idea of initiating a war with the fellow Forces of light, in violation of the Dragon's Peace, and for no other reason than "we want to becuz Manetheren was kewl" is so insanely foolhardy and founded in ignorance of Manetheren's past that it should be ignored by any sane and reasonable leader. While Manetheren certainly did have a fine reputation, it was also stabbed in the back by every single member Ten Nations alliance, had its prince imprisoned, tortured and horribly mutilated by one nation of said alliance, and was also betrayed by the Amyrlin Seat of that time. It ended up a smoldering ruin, population ravaged by the forces of darkness including those lovely man-eating Trollocs, thanks to all that love from the so-called Forces of Light. So yeah, if you shave off the ugly history, all you have is a nice pretty banner. Tai'shar, hup hup cheerio! But a real nation to live up to? No, time for something new.
  25. True, but nobody goes hungry, is abused or dies. I'll take the lobotomy thanks! Incorrect - nobody goes hungry, is abused, or dies *at the hands of other humans on purpose*. He's wouldn't be creating a world full of mini-Creators, he'd be creating a world for of robots, and one that he does not have the capability of micromanaging, meaning that he can't create some super convoluted C++ human programming that will allow people to look beyond their own lack of will and go out and actively do things for other people. Like theft, charity is an act of will.
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