Knife of Dreams, Part VI

JordanKnifeOfDreamsBannerWelcome everyone to Book 11 of The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan. You can find the schedule to Knife of Dreams over HERE. Everyone is welcome to join us!

This week, I am your host. Eivind, our WoT encyclopedia, can be found in the comments. Check out Sue’s post at Coffee, Cookies, & Chili Peppers for insights and deft resoning and Liesel’s at Musings on Fantasia, cool non-spoilery fan art.

This week, we covered Chapters 24-26. Spoilers run rampant for this section and all previous books below!

1) Egwene is holding strong in the Tower. Have you had a similar experience to her revelation about embracing the pain?

I have found that injuries incurred through honest farm work, such as working with the goats or donkeys, is far easier to tolerate than, say, stubbing my toe on a chair leg. If I have some work to show for the injury/pain, then I am better at handling it. Unless I am very tired. Then I can be a bit of a bitch/cry baby over it. I am glad that Egwene is getting healing each day so that her injuries do not become semi-permanent disabilities.

2) Egwene seems to be hoping for a mutiny from within the Tower. Do you think this will happen? If so, is it more likely to start with the initiates or with the Aes Sedai closest to Elaida?

Yes, I think we are looking to enjoy a mutiny in the near future. However, this might be coupled with the Seanchan invasion that Egwene dreamed about it. In such chaos, it would be easy for the mutineers to feel that they had an advantage in tossing out Elaida and electing Egwene to speak for the Aes Sedai with the invading force.

In some ways, the mutiny has already started, and it started with the initiates. They are treating Egwene with preference, providing a battered pillow for her and honeyed tea. So I expect that they will lead the way and other Aes Sedai will fall in line.

3) Egwene hears that Aes Sedai have been bonded to Asha’men and that some Aes Sedai have sworn oaths to Rand. What did you make of her reaction that it is inappropriate (at the least) for Aes Sedai to swear oaths to any man?

Haha! Egwene would be in a red fury if someone changed things around and said that such and such male group should never, ever be expected to swear an oath to any woman, no matter how powerful or competent. Sexism, it works both ways no matter what set of genitals you got.

4) We spent a little time in Tuon’s head this reading. What surprised you the most? Did you find Tuon’s reaction to her first kiss amusing?

So much here. First, she really expects to some day rule all of Randland (haha!) and she expects to collar all the Channelers (hahahahahhahahahahahaha!). Obviously, this woman hasn’t been paying much attention to customs of the folks around her nor to the news of the land she walks.

Then she was unfamiliar with the idea of ta’veren, not having an equivalent in her culture, and merely blew it off as superstition, while failing to see her bird readings as (possibly) superstitious.

Part of my thinks Tuon is a good match for Mat (physically capable of fending for herself, just as bullheaded if not more), but then she has these ideas about enslaving a good chunk of the population. Mat definitely has his work cut out for him.

I was amused that while we know Tuon quite enjoyed the kiss, she managed to make a simple observation about Mat’s potential fever with a straight face. I was giggling to myself over this scene.

5) Grady and the other Asha’men with Perrin are looking pretty haggard, worn out from making gateways to move troops around. Will they hold up for the Shaido fight? And young Aram is also looking pretty haggard, but from some different reason. Is he the weakest link in the forthcoming fight?

Ooo! I am worried about them. We all know that those loyal to the ta’veren tend to push themselves really, really hard. I fear we may see one or more of them burn themselves out in the forthcoming fight. We know that Stilling can be healed, to some degree. Can burn out be healed?

I fear that Aram is working himself up to betraying Perrin in some way. He’s probably wrapping his mind around it, coming up with excuses of why Maesma is right and how Perrin is just mislead. Hence, he has some internal conflict going on and needs to overdrink to cope with it.

6) Play a kissing game with Rolan or meet with Galina in the burned out half of Malden to pass off the Oath Rod….Which would you choose?

I would choose the kissing game. 1) It promises to give me my freedom (either in escape or eventually when I put the white off); and 2) It would be far more pleasant to meeting with Galina (who may or may not betray me). I know there is that whole conflict of being in a committed relationship, but Faile hasn’t trusted Perrin, ever, around Berelain. So if Faile truly believes that crap, then she ‘knows’ she isn’t in a monogamous committed relationship anyway. Additionally, I think Faile would be far more appreciative of Perrin and his commitment (in spite of sexy women just throwing themselves at him) if she did a little kissing while in this extraordinary circumstance.

Other Tidbits:

Loved Egwene’s little chat with Mattin Stepaneos about how just how many leaders the Dragon Reborn had actually killed.

Alviarin seems desperate to gain Egwene’s confidence. Of course, we all know why, and I very much hope and Egwene continues to hold her tongue around her.

4 thoughts on “Knife of Dreams, Part VI

  1. Liesel Hill says:

    Yeah, it was interesting that Tuon had never heard of ta’veren, wasn’t it? You’d think that with them having their own prophecies and histories that often parallel the ones of Randland, they’d at least have a similar concept, but it seems that isn’t the case. I, too, really enjoyed Egwene’s interactions with Mattin Stepaneos. It will be interesting if they ever see each other again–he as a ruler and she as the actual Amyrlin seat. Let’s hope everyone lives long enough to make that interesting scene happen. :D

    • nrlymrtl says:

      I would love to see Stepaneos as a ruler having tea and a chat with Amyrlin Egwene. That would be extra interesting if Rand was there with his three wives!

  2. Eivind Fonn says:

    1. Can’t say that I have. One of the most painful things I remember was in eighth grade, I was trying to get rid of this really annoying girl, and I kicked her right in her shinbone, toes first. She didn’t feel a thing and I legitimately thought I had broken my foot. Big failure. Egwene is on a totally different level. :-D

    2. I don’t think it’ll happen from the sisters any time soon. With how divided the Ajahs are, any mutiny will effectively have at most 1/6 support, since nobody will cooperate with anyone from a different Ajah. Her biggest hope is from the initiates, since she’s basically already won them over. (Go Nicola!)

    3. Yes, I think Egwene, like many other Aes Sedai, are somewhat stuck in the previous age. They are going to have to get used to being half of a whole now. But I expect that she and the rest will turn around by the end of the series.

    4. I’m always struck when reading this chapter about how fascinating it is to be inside Tuon’s head. Most jarring is how she genuinely thinks about Mat as ‘Toy’. From her point of view, that is really his name. It’s also interesting how much she discusses with Selucia, even when they’re silent, and how, even when travelling with Mat, she has the invasion in mind. Even if Mat marries her, that might not be the end of the Seanchan threat.

    5. Yes, Perrin’s major problem is that he is low on channelers. Even if he defeats the Shaido, Perrin will still be stuck in northern Altara with a large host of people he has to get out, with only two wearied Asha’man to do it. But to be honest, they don’t have to hold up. They are there for transportation, now. The outcome of the coming battle rests on the forkroot tea. If it is effective, they will likely win. If not, they will lose. Tylee has some channelers, and I don’t think Grady and Neald will make much difference to or from.

    The situation with Aram is about to come to a head, I feel. With the battle looming, it would be the perfect moment for it, plot wise that is.

    6. Well, good question. Galina is ready to help tomorrow, and I haven’t seen a good ETA from Rolan except for “soon”. Then again, Galina is clearly vile and I think Faile knows this. If she helps them out it’s against her will, and I’d rather take help from someone who wants to help than from someone who doesn’t. Then again, Faile will have to be unfaithful (however justified) to accept Rolan’s help, and she is clearly very loyal to Perrin.

    Other.

    Yay! Next week, some things will actually happen! :P

    • nrlymrtl says:

      Good point about the Ajahs in the Tower not cooperating with each other and hoping they will band together to get something done is pointless at this point.

      Yes, I still worry that Tuon will continue on her Supreme Ruler path until she gets a major smackdown, and if that smackdown comes from Rand, Mat could be in a rather awkward place.

      I wonder if Perrin, if he wins the forthcoming battle, if he could convince some of the Shaido Wise Women to work with the Asha’men in creating gates to get everyone out of northern Altara quickly? But that might be asking too much….or it could help pay off the defeated’s ‘toh’.

      As interesting as things have been (Ogier wedding, Tuon’s POV, etc.), I am ready for some of this plotlines to be resolved. Hurray!

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