Lord of Chaos Read Along Part VI

JordanLordOfChaosBannerWelcome back everyone! This week are awesome commenter Eivind is our host. You can catch his answers below in the comments.

This week we covered Chapters 24-30. Spoilers lurk below!

1. The Aes Sedai embassy, even when not meeting Rand, appears to be busy with pointless channeling and undermining Rand’s noble support. With the first meeting in mind, what do you think their ultimate intentions are? How will they go about achieving them?

I wonder if they are weaving some sort of saidar cage to catch and transport him in? Is that even possible? Rand has threatened to leave weavings in place around idiots before – basically locking them in place. Anyway, they are Aes Sedai and up to something. I don’t think they know how NOT to be up to something.

I think Rand did a pretty good job in this first meeting. He let them go on about the Amrylin’s titles, etc., and then he simply intros himself as Rand Al’Thor. Nice. Rand started off as a sweet boy and has turned into this powerful man, who has a touch of class. I also liked how he let them know that he could detect them channeling – which they completely dismissed as possible later. I swear, these Aes Sedai are blind! Anyway, back to Eivind’s question – what are their ultimate intentions? Well, power. they want power, don’t know how to live without it. So, power over Rand. If they can achieve that, then I think think they expect to be able to conduct the Final Battle in an organized manner.

Snort. Yeah, right. How will they attempt to achieve that? Well, they think gold will be a hook, and then I think they will employ whatever they are constantly channeling in town. Of course, it will all go sideways on them. And I will enjoy reading every minute of that!

2. Egwene and Gawyn finally have their moment. What will the future hold for these star-crossed lovers on opposite sides of a rift? Will Egwene manage to convince him of the truth? Will she be discovered by the Aes Sedai or can they both manage to elope?

Well, shared wet dreams or not, that was sudden! And I find this a bit of a tough question as we have seen so little of Gawyn. I wish his character was fleshed out a bit more. While Galad is an extremist, Gawyn does have a similar streak within him. I think it will take something huge, like Morgase walking up to him and slapping sense into him, to convince him Rand did not murder her. So, no, I don’t think Egwene by herself can convince him.

I think she will slip past the Aes Sedai this time, but she might need Rand’s or the Aiel’s help. This might force her to leave the Wise Ones and go cause havoc some place else, or perhaps force her to take Rand to Salidar.

3. The Sea Folk are back and they’re hounding Rand for a meeting. Evidently they also have a role to play, but how do they fit in?

I suspect that Rand is correct in that the Sea Folk have their own prophesy concerning him. But they also are in the best position to hear word of the Seanchan and what they are up to. They may also know movements, especially naval, of any other nation. In short, Rand is being an idiot, and perhaps even a dick, for ignoring them this blatantly for this long. His list of allies is short to begin with.

4. A Gray Man makes an attempt on Rand’s life, and Taim just happens to stop by the palace exactly then. Fortuitous timing or something else? Could there be a connection between this attack and the earlier one in the streets, which was apparently orchestrated by Padan Fain?

From Padan Fain’s mullings and contemplations, I don’t think he sent the Gray Man. Rand has such a long list of enemies, and even frenemies (like Mazrim Taim). So we have the Forsaken – any and all like to play with Gray Men. Perhaps Taim suspected or knew and wanted to be there to save the day to make an impression with Rand. Perhaps he just wanted to see how things went and when he saw that Rand planned to capture, instead of kill, the Gray Man, Taim eliminated the thing in case it incriminated him.

5. Siuan and Leane are finally healed, and Nynaeve makes headlines! Now that they’re back in the fold, do you see them trying to take over the show again? And what now to do about Logain?

Can I just say that Aes Sedai are sometimes real asses! Siuan and Leane needed compassion long before now, but some many of the Salidar Aes Sedai could barely give them the time of day. But now that they are Aes Sedai again, they are real sisters and once again worthy of comfort, respect, and all that honey goodness. If I were Siuan and Leane, I would have learned something important from that – like how transitory the friendship of the sisterhood can be.

So of course Siuan wants to be at the top once again. Already, the hierarchy of the Aes Sedai has raised its ugly head and Leane and Siuan are deemed at the bottom of the totem pole.

This is a little related to my answer to the next question, but I am going to guess that Siuan, Nynaeve, Elayne, Birgitta, and Logain (and perhaps Leane) all end up running away, perhaps with the help of Uno & friends. Siuan can’t have the power she wants in Salidar. Nynaeve and Elayne already have tentative plans to save the world by finding a bowl. Logain needs to get away from the Salidar Witches and Siuan & crew could use a ‘protector’. Now I just wonder how the bargain will be struck?

6. A couple of baddies resurface: Padan Fain in Caemlyn and Aran’gar in Salidar. One as crazy as ever, and the other the calculating villain we’ve come to expect from the Forsaken. What do you think Aran’gar’s orders are? And could Fain have a plan in mind that’s more specific than just… being himself?

I think Aran’gar is in Salidar for Rand’s childhood companions, perhaps simply to kill them. If she can do it with some subtlety, she can even stay in place and gather intel on the Salidar Aes Sedai, perhaps guide them into some stupidity or trap. This feeds into my answer to the question above. If Nynaeve and Elayne, perhaps even Siuan, are threatened, injured, nearly lose their lives, then they might finally decide to leave Salidar. Oooo! Perhaps Aran’gar will offer ultimate glory to Logain! that could makes things very interesting.

Padan Fain. He’s a disgusting brute, don’t you think? When Rand finally does kill him, I hope it is slow and exquisitely painful. I am guessing that Fain does have a plan, but it will have to be a tight knit one. As wicked as Fain is, he is a loner with few frenemies to work with. He has some regular human followers and a tame Myrdraal. I would guess that his plan would rely heavily on sneakiness and trickery. I am not sure if the dagger ties him to Shadar Logoth or not, but if it does, and if Rand returns there, that could turn into a messed up situation quickly.

Other Tidbits:

Egwene demands from Rand to know how he travels from city to city. Without hesitation, he picks up her shawl and does his best to explain and demonstrate. He gave away that knowledge without demanding something in return. Come on Egwene! You can’t be that selfish and not realize what he just gave you and yet you withhold something so important as Elayne’s whereabouts.

I just have to say that Egwene must be pretty physically fit by now, with the Wise Ones having her run around the city, sometimes literally. I am sure Gawyn has appreciated this particular aspect of Egwene. ;)

The Aiel rabbit warren of honor and obligation is complex and confusing. I feel for Rand. I don’t really understand why Sullin is now a palace servant, though I respect she is paying some obligation or erasing some smudge from her honor.  And Rand is starting to catch on – asking the Aiel to be silent about the Gray Man and Mazrim Taim. I now wonder what he has planned for Sullin – something that will help her pay her obligation, and also allow Rand to pay part of his obligation to her. And she won’t like it. But I bet I will love reading it! :)

While Aviendha has clearly spent too much time 1) staring at Rand’s eyebrows or 2) avoiding him, she now feels she is behind in teaching him abut Aiel honor, etc. And I think she has something else to tell him. I still think she is pregnant.

9 thoughts on “Lord of Chaos Read Along Part VI

  1. Liesel Hill says:

    The Aes Sedai don’t know how NOT to be up to something. LOL. I agree. When things get too quiet in the Tower, they go, ‘oh no. I’m not up to something right now. Let’s see. Where can I meddle…” :D I also think you make an interesting point about what a decent guy Rand still is. He may be going crazy (voices in his head and all) but he shows Egwene the Traveling without question, doesn’t give himself titles, and still shows compassion for the likes of Sulin, Aviendha, and the maidens who were guarding him during the Grey Man attack. More than anything, I think that decency was what impressed me most about Rand in this section.

    • nrlymrtl says:

      Yeah, Rand’s a good guy. I hope he stays that way, but I think he may not get the chance, between the inside of his head getting crowded and all the hard choices he has made, and has yet to make.

      So true about the Aes Sedai. Even Egwene. She can’t take a week off! told to rest and she sneaks around in Dreamland every chance she gets.

  2. Eivind Fonn says:

    1. So we kind of know what they want to do. They want to take Rand back to Tar Valon with them, somehow and someway, and then install some rulers in Tear and Cairhien who are Aes Sedai-friendly. The biggest mystery is how the channeling fits into it. And… I won’t say how. :P

    2. Yeah, next time they meet they won’t be quite as friendly with each other I think. And we will know more about why that is next week. Compared to these two, Rand and Aviendha seems like a downright straightforward relationship…

    3. Aaaaand… the Sea Folk is back. I have to admit I find them really annoying. I applaud Rand’s efforts in keeping them out of the story for as long as he can. :D

    How do they fit in? Well, we know their channelers are experts on weather, and there’s a weather ter’angreal waiting to be picked up… hmm…

    4. You know, I don’t trust Taim at all. The first time ever he just shows up unnanounced in the palace, he kills a gray man before he can say what he knows (if, indeed, it were possible to get them to reveal things—it could not be, for all I know). Seems extremely conventient.

    And in spite of the odd timing, I’m going to assume that Fain was not involved at all. Although that’s just conjecture on my part.

    5. Ah, it was so nice to see Aes Sedai for once collectively lose their brick wall attitude and revert to a more emotional state of mind. And i was also great to see Siuan and Leane genuinely doing something nice for the girls afterwards. Happy for everyone! Even Logain, who now represents a major problem. I don’t see a solution without problems.

    6. I doubt Fain has any concept of an overarching plan. He seems to just wing it, for better or worse, and it doesn’t really seem possible to predict what he will be doing next.

    Now that Aran’gar is in Salidar, note that we have a forsaken installed on both sides of the Aes Sedai rift, with Mesaana being in the Tower (although we don’t know who she masquerades as). I’m assuming they want to keep the sides as level as possible, so that the conflict will continue but nobody will be able to win. Note that we now know Delana is Black. She is also a Sitter, so we might be able to find out what the Black Ajah wants by studying her voting patterns… if we ever get the chance. Also be on the lookout for other Aes Sedai who agree with her suspiciously often!

    I also wonder if it was not Aran’gar who was the unknown person who saw Nynaeve spying on the Hall here the other day.

    And, of course, now we know the purpose behind Semirhage torturing poor Cabriana Mecandes.

    See you all next week! I suspect we will have QUITE a bit to talk about. ;)

    • Liesel Hill says:

      Yup, it’s great that some of this stuff is finally starting to come together. Taim never ceases being…you know, Taim. Compared to him, Logain’s pretty much a Saint. Very excited for next week! :D

    • nrlymrtl says:

      My oh my! I wonder what has both you and Liesel so excited for next week’s section? Hmmm… Now I just want to stay up all night reading that section.

      It is interesting that the Sea Folk annoy you so. We have only seen a little of them so far in the story line, so I look forward to seeing what they do to become so annoying.

      With Taim, Logain, Fain, Aran’gar, and Mesaana all in places and motivated to fuck things up, I don’t see how our heroes can win. If any three of these bad guys get coordinated, Rand is going to have a major hard time saving not the world, but his own skin!

    • suecccp says:

      1. I can’t help wondering if the Aes Sedai have even considered that anyone might refuse to go along with their plans.

      2. Oh crumbs, that IS messed up!

      3. Yes, considering how much time everyone spends moaning about the weather I am getting annoyed that nobody is actually trying to do anything to get it back to normal.

      6. I would be interested to learn why these sisters turned to the Black. With Liandrin it is pretty obvious that she is just plain evil, but Delana seems fairly normal.

  3. suecccp says:

    1. Your idea of a Power-wrought cage is interesting and could certainly explain what they are doing. Stupidity, your name is Aes Sedai! They are so amazingly blind to anything that they don’t want to see, even if they have the evidence right in front of them!

    2. I think Egwene is very lucky that the Sisters in the envoy are so focussed on Rand, otherwise they might spend more time trying to track her down.

    3. I couldn’t agree more . . . *slap . . . “Wake up, Rand!”

    4. It is so very difficult to trust Taim, isn’t it? I can’t work out quite why he makes me uneasy, but he does.

    5. I agree that the Aes Sedai are total bitches and deserve a good slapping all round. Also, I cannot see the girls sticking around for much longer, though I am not sure that they will take Logain to get the magic bowl. He certainly needs to be well away from Salidar so that he can join up with Rand and start working towards his glorious future.

    6. I hadn’t thought of Nynaeve as a target for Aran’gar, but that does make sense. Unfortunately, I think Fain is going to around for quite some time.

    Aviendha pregnant? I can’t begin to imagine how grumpy that would make her!! :D

    • nrlymrtl says:

      Yes, I want to see Logain head off to his glorious future….and I am sure sooner or later there will be a love interest. It will probably start off as a love-hate relationship as all seem to do in this series.

      Ah yes, if Aviendha were pregnant, this would explain many of her sudden starts & stops in conversations, and some of her mood swings.

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