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  1. My pet theory is that Rand KILLING the DO would actuaslly be the total Light victory. He was just deceived into thinking it'd create a world without choice. That said, I agree that the DO needed Rand for a total victory, and he doesn't care for less. All he ever achieves without a Dragon is just a bit of misery, rather than the abyss he's looking for.
  2. Gateways are, indeed, overpowered, which I think is why they were so underutiized until Androl. I mean, just a simple 'tie off a big gateway on a wall (or on the outside of the city wall) in each great city' would have massive effects on the economy. Instant trade to basically everywhere (probably the reason everyone stopped tieing off gateways). Instantaneous troop movements, as Rand showed, are insanely powerful as well. And that's just uses that are exactly what a gateway is meant to be, nothing at all like the extra tricks you propose (which sound hilarious, if tricky. Tiny gateway
  3. To be honest - I think it's all going to boil down to channelling power. And while Elayne secured the Kin for now, she can't hold them. One other ruler being smart enough to offer them a similar deal and *bam* half the Kin live there. Or the White Tower throws a hissy fit and essentially asserts that it, not Andor, controls the Kin. Or the BT declares independence and a king/queen of Andor messes up the fallout. So which channelling powers exist? Mostly, I'd say, the WT (beaten up but not destroyed), the Seanchan (strong but have a continent to reclaim first - but after that, would le
  4. I personally think the Aiel have the right of it. The world is simply a dream (among many, see the mirror worlds). It's just that only Rand has now sorted out the trick to using it, because it's a much stronger dream than a random nightmare in T'a'R. Rand had to "figure out" the secret, of course, to even fight the DO.
  5. Consider that Birgitte knows that even in her oldest memories, there are lives uncounted before that that she cannot remember. She's been around a long time. Yet there are only around a hundred or so Heroes. So, given what we know, old Heroes continue to serve, and new Heroes being added must be exceedingly rare. It's highly doubtful that even one person from the books will be added, let alone half a dozen. Of course, we might equally ask 'which people were Heroes in disguise'? We know Hawkwing recognized Rand, but he was the most bloody obvious Hero the Age had to offer (plus Hawkwing
  6. Few extra items, there is a good deal of evidence for Mat being Aemon and per RJ the Dragon is one of the Heroes. Very true, and the evidence gets even more compelling with the Tuon-Elderene comparisons being added in. Could you elaborate on that? I haven't noticed much in that sense. Even so: Mat being Aemon reborn and having a fairly similar calling in life seems quite exceptional to me. The Heroes have such, true, but even they tend to end up in different countries and/or with slightly different callings. Mat would be a general, fighting a seemingly hopeless battle against the S
  7. Hmm, I have to think a bit, it's been a while since I reread the whole series. 1. LoC. Because 'kneel, or you will be knelt' is one of the most powerful scenes in the series, IMO (it would have been even better if Taim was 'just' power-hungry) 2. TGH. Ingtar's darkness, and Rand's growth, combine to make it great. Special mention to the Seanchan for being really just powerhungry maniacs, even if Suroth was actually evil. The whole Damane sequence... And Rand vs. the Amyrlin was a much better story here than in ToM. 3. TSR. Because the Two Rivers and the Rhuidean bits were heart-wrenching
  8. Isn't it a bit of a one-color world if everyone is just pursuing balance? To me, the Dark One as destroyer of balance/order makes perfect sense, even if he is integral to the pattern he can still try to break it.
  9. To be quite honest, I think Rand's epiphany could have been the end of the whole series, with just an epilogue to describe what happened after. Sure, there was something extra in what AMoL gave us (not only did Rand need to know why he fought, he also had to know he wasn't alone), but it's rather thin for two extra books. However, I don't think RJ would have avoided that extra message. So then I am left thinking BS could have tried for 2 books (with Rand's epiphany at the end of 1, and the epilogue at the end of 2). This seems reasonable, especially if Rand had started gathering his armies
  10. Of course, she might just die avenging her husband some other way. Which would still be a lousy life.
  11. There is that. But I am a bit wary of these pairings; from the books, it seemed somewhat 'special' that Birgitte and Gaidal were together always. There's Shiva and Calian, and they may be those (seeing as Egwene has obvious ties to Rand, who has a rather important role in ending the age too)... Sadly I still don't quite see what would distinguish Mat, Perrin, Egwene, Nynaeve, etcetera... so without that, I feel we're stuck with mostly guesswork. Hurin was explicitly mentioned as a possibility, which almost implies everyone else present there is a rather obvious figure Hawkwing already
  12. Interesting; the most obvious hero types (Moiraine, Perrin, Mat, Lan, Nynaeve) didn't die. Egwene might be one, which would make the proper less (if only by one), but what other options do we have? I am assuming, of course, the Heroes are on the side of good. Otherwise, Moridin and Demandred would be decent choices for dead ones, too.
  13. I do agree it makes some sense; I would add that they had fairly similar and strong bonds with Rand. The only people who, for significant amounts of time, seemed concerned with teaching Rand to be the best for himself (rather than being good enough while saving the world properly, which seems Cadsuane's schtick, or just concerned with Rand being alright without necessarily trying to be a teacher, which Min did). In other words, Nynaeve seemed the most explicit in combining loving Rand with wanting to teach him the right thing (rather mother-like; even progressing from telling baby-Rhand i
  14. Ah, well, I ignored it because my post expanded from the conclusion you were probably right in that they are a corrective mechanism; maybe I should've been more explicit about it. The question then is what makes them different from Ta'veren, because that might help decide who becomes a Hero.
  15. It's weak, in their cases - but getting Birgitte to die at the right time requires Gaidal Cain, and getting Hawkwing to joke around with Rand at Falme requires him to be one too. As to the heroes as corrective mechanism, that seems a duplicate and thus (in my opinion) dubious use. Ta'veren serve said function, and much less specifically. We know of at least 3 of them around in the current time, and given that many people know of the skill and how it's supposed to work, more must have been alive recently (could all be Noal/Jain, I suppose). There are two things we know require heroes: p
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