The Slog WLW - Chapter 8 [Spoilers]

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« on: April 13, 2016, 12:18:58 pm »
Chapter 8:

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The notch that would shatter his sword, so allowing the broken blade to plunge into the Aspect-Emperor's heart. He could even feel the blood slick his thumb and fingers, as he followed himself into the gloomy peril of the alley.

So, is the White Luck mistaken?  Does the vision he have lie?  No, I think it is right.  But I think there is far more to it.  That once he can be killed, it simply won't matter.

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And so he stepped into his stepping, walked into his walking, travelled into his journey, a quest that had already ended in the death of the False Prophet.

This part is why I don't believe it hinges on a play on words.  The False Prophet is Kellhus, not just someone with the title Aspect-Emperor.

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Thus had her husband, in the course of arming her against their mad son, also warned her against himself. As well as confirmed what Achamian had said so very long ago.

So, she finally gets it?  But she still trusts Kellhus, it seems.

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"What if redemption were simply another form of damnation? What if the only true salvation lay in seeing through the trick and embracing oblivion?

Like a Nonman?  Is this what they knew?

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"You lean heavily on Father's advice..." he said, his voice reaching for intonations that almost matched Kellhus's. "But you should know that I am your husband as he really is. Even Uncle, when he speaks, parses and pitches his words to mimic the way others sound—to conceal the inhumanity I so love to flaunt. We Dûnyain... we are not human, Mother. And you... You are children to us. Ridiculous and adorable. And so insufferably stupid."

Indeed, again, it revolves around Dûnyain not being truly human.  That "accursed blood" and so on.  I still see it all going back to that Nonman heritage...

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"Kel..." he said with a bestial grunt, "and Sammi..."
The Holy Empress stiffened. If Inrilatas had been seeking a fatal chink, he had discovered it. "I don't understand," she replied, swallowing. "Sammi is... Sammi, he..."

Does he goad her?  Or is he being honest, that Sammi really is the voice?

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Fanayal ab Kascamandri raised his hand as if trying to snatch words she had tossed aside. "So this White-Luck Warrior of yours," he snapped, "he hunts the Aspect-Emperor?"
"The Goddess hunts the Demon."
Fanayal turned to his Cishaurim and grinned. "Tell me, Meppa. Do you like her?"
"Like her?" the blind man responded, obviously too accustomed to his jokes to be incredulous. "No."
"Well I do," the Padirajah said. "Even her curses please me."

At first I thought that Fanayal was just kind of dumb and open to manipulation.  But I think there is more to it.  Perhaps he thinks he can actually ally himself with Yatwer to kill Kellhus?  Perhaps he is actually not wrong...

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Apparently activity along the Scylvendi frontier, which had surged in previous weeks, had now dwindled to nothing, a fact that at once heartened her, because of the redeployment it allowed, and troubled her.

Something is up with this, but I don't know what.  Perhaps a Scylvendi attack is the real death-blow to the Empire?

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The crisis she faced was a crisis in confidence, nothing more, nothing less. The less her subjects believed in the Empire, the less some would sacrifice, the more others would resist. It was almost arithmetic. The balance was wobbling, and all the world watched to see which way the sand would spill. Anasûrimbor Esmenet had made a resolution to act as if she believed to spite all those who doubted her as much as anything else, and paradoxically, they had all started believing with her. It was a lesson Kellhus had drummed into her countless times and one she resolved never to forget again.
To know is to have power over the world; to believe is to have power over men.

Ah, yes, confidence, speaking to certainty, Kellhus bread-and-butter.

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The tone and pose of an innocent bewildered and bullied by another's irrationality. "If his actions conform to your expectations," Kellhus had told her, "then he deceives you. The more unthinkable dissembling seems, Esmi, the more he dissembles..."

Did Kellhus figure to pit Esmenet versus Maitha?  Why?

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"I serve my Lord Padirajah."
The Mother-Supreme laughed. This, she realized, was her new temple, a heathen army, flying through lands where even goatherds were loathe to go. And these heathen were her new priests—these Fanim. What did it matter what they believed, so long as they accomplished what needed to be done?
"But you lie," she croaked in her old voice.
"He has been anoin—"
"He has been anointed!" she cackled. "But not by whom you think!"

So, Yatwer does have plans for Fanayal, it was no accident that Psatma was taken.

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"I fear my brother does not fully trust me."
"Because he knows, doesn't he? He knows the secret of our blood."
"Perhaps."
"He knows you, knows you better than you know yourself."
"Perhaps."

Again, about the blood.

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"The sum of sins," Inrilatas continued. "There is nothing more godly than murder. Nothing more absolute."

So, did Inrilatas actually plan to kill Maitha?  Or was it a ploy to have himself killed?

There is plausibility either way.  He seems to have told him about Kel to distract him, but it could be that this wasn't the only reason.  Then again, it seems like he is being completely honest in telling him about Kel:

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"A thousand words and insinuations batter them day in and day out," the youth said. "But because they lack the memory to enumerate them, they forget, and find themselves stranded with hopes and suspicions not of their making. Mother has always loved you, Uncle, has always seen you as a more human version of Father—an illusion you have laboured long and hard to cultivate. Now, suddenly, when she most desperately needs your counsel, she fears and hates you."
"And this is Kelmomas's work?"
"He isn't what he seems, Uncle."

So, he acknowledges that this is all Kel's work.  So, why try to kill him?  I think Inrilatas knows full well Maitha's strength and so he elects to have him kill him, rather than Kel.  However, this plays right into what Kel wants, so why unmask him only to aid his plan?  Should we be asking cui bono?  Perhaps.  But benefit here is tricky to figure...

This conversation is very much akin to Kellhus and Moe's TTT conversation.  Very little is as what it seems.  I need more time to ruminate on it really...
“I am a warrior of ages, Anasûrimbor . . . ages. I have dipped my nimil in a thousand hearts. I have ridden both against and for the No-God in the great wars that authored this wilderness. I have scaled the ramparts of great Golgotterath, watched the hearts of High Kings break for fury.” -Cet’ingira

Blackstone

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« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2016, 03:25:23 pm »
Chapter 8:

Quote
The notch that would shatter his sword, so allowing the broken blade to plunge into the Aspect-Emperor's heart. He could even feel the blood slick his thumb and fingers, as he followed himself into the gloomy peril of the alley.

So, is the White Luck mistaken?  Does the vision he have lie?  No, I think it is right.  But I think there is far more to it.  That once he can be killed, it simply won't matter.

Quote
And so he stepped into his stepping, walked into his walking, travelled into his journey, a quest that had already ended in the death of the False Prophet.

This part is why I don't believe it hinges on a play on words.  The False Prophet is Kellhus, not just someone with the title Aspect-Emperor.

I totally agree. I think we talked about this in another thread. I think the WLW succeeds in killing Kellhus. But, as you say, the question is whether it matters by the time he gets around to doing it. (But note: my favorite crackpot theory right now is that Kellhus is sucked back in time and imprisoned in the Carapace to walk the world as the No-god, and that the final series is entitled "The First Apocalypse.")

Chapter 8:

Quote
"You lean heavily on Father's advice..." he said, his voice reaching for intonations that almost matched Kellhus's. "But you should know that I am your husband as he really is. Even Uncle, when he speaks, parses and pitches his words to mimic the way others sound—to conceal the inhumanity I so love to flaunt. We Dûnyain... we are not human, Mother. And you... You are children to us. Ridiculous and adorable. And so insufferably stupid."

Indeed, again, it revolves around Dûnyain not being truly human.  That "accursed blood" and so on.  I still see it all going back to that Nonman heritage...


I have a bit of a problem with this. I just finished a re-read of TDTCB, and Kellhus clearly has feelings and passions as a child. In fact, a lot of the training he undertakes as a young Dunyain is to overcome his passions. As late as the climax of TDTCB, when Kellhus is thinking about that meditation exercise (the logos is without...), he is having feelings. So the "blood" really only has to do with their physical and mental advantages, not emotional "advantages."
So why are some of his children born without the ability to feel human emotion? Authorial inconsistency?
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« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2016, 05:16:41 pm »
I totally agree. I think we talked about this in another thread. I think the WLW succeeds in killing Kellhus. But, as you say, the question is whether it matters by the time he gets around to doing it. (But note: my favorite crackpot theory right now is that Kellhus is sucked back in time and imprisoned in the Carapace to walk the world as the No-god, and that the final series is entitled "The First Apocalypse.")

While that is interesting, I hope not.  Time travel just seems kind of silly to me.

I have a bit of a problem with this. I just finished a re-read of TDTCB, and Kellhus clearly has feelings and passions as a child. In fact, a lot of the training he undertakes as a young Dunyain is to overcome his passions. As late as the climax of TDTCB, when Kellhus is thinking about that meditation exercise (the logos is without...), he is having feelings. So the "blood" really only has to do with their physical and mental advantages, not emotional "advantages."
So why are some of his children born without the ability to feel human emotion? Authorial inconsistency?

I think it has to do with the inherent instability of the hybrids that the Dunyain are inevitably breeding.  Indeed, the fact that most women they try to reproduce with tend to end up with nonviable mixes, producing freakish or at best completely imbalanced children seems to imply some genetic incompatibility.  The results are probably pretty typical, really.

If we can believe what Maitha tells us about Moe's children, his rate of success was 1/6.  Kellhus' actually seems only slightly higher, at 2/6 (Kayûtas, and Serwa) but I think that might speak more to something special about Esmenet than Kellhus.  Still, I think that ultimately, what the Dunyain think they are doing isn't really what they are doing.  I think there is more metaphysical things going on then just the training that they go through, just the training tends to sharpen it.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2016, 07:25:04 pm by H »
“I am a warrior of ages, Anasûrimbor . . . ages. I have dipped my nimil in a thousand hearts. I have ridden both against and for the No-God in the great wars that authored this wilderness. I have scaled the ramparts of great Golgotterath, watched the hearts of High Kings break for fury.” -Cet’ingira

themerchant

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« Reply #3 on: April 13, 2016, 07:21:20 pm »

I'm not sure we can believe Uncle Holy, the text notes these tiny pauses in his answers, which may or may not mean anything.

I can't work it out :)
« Last Edit: April 13, 2016, 07:24:11 pm by themerchant »

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« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2016, 07:23:45 pm »
The fix is in...only Madness and Wilshire will ever know how dumb I am,  ;)
« Last Edit: April 13, 2016, 07:25:56 pm by H »
“I am a warrior of ages, Anasûrimbor . . . ages. I have dipped my nimil in a thousand hearts. I have ridden both against and for the No-God in the great wars that authored this wilderness. I have scaled the ramparts of great Golgotterath, watched the hearts of High Kings break for fury.” -Cet’ingira

themerchant

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« Reply #5 on: April 13, 2016, 07:24:58 pm »
Moe the younger is Cnaiur's Son.

Indeed, I am in idiot.  Early morning posting takes it's toll...I'm going to edit...
I've edited as well let's purge it :D


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« Reply #6 on: April 13, 2016, 07:28:58 pm »

I'm not sure we can believe Uncle Holy, the text notes these tiny pauses in his answers, which may or may not mean anything.

I can't work it out :)

I think that his pauses are actually him trying to figure out that Inrilatas is really after with all this, rather than him concealing anything.  The scene strikes me as him actually being quite forthcoming to try to divine what the hell this this all about...but again, that could just be window-dressing.

Still, Maitha seems to me to really just be forthright here and there is little to point us to him having lied.
“I am a warrior of ages, Anasûrimbor . . . ages. I have dipped my nimil in a thousand hearts. I have ridden both against and for the No-God in the great wars that authored this wilderness. I have scaled the ramparts of great Golgotterath, watched the hearts of High Kings break for fury.” -Cet’ingira

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« Reply #7 on: April 13, 2016, 07:48:03 pm »
I've never once thought that Maithenet was lying about anything. I simply have always believed it to be Esme's paranoia and Kel's manipulations. If only Thelli had read his face......
“No. I am your end. Before your eyes I will put your seed to the knife. I will quarter your carcass and feed it to the dogs. Your bones I will grind to dust and cast to the winds. I will strike down those who speak your name or the name of your fathers, until ‘Yursalka’ becomes as meaningless as infant babble. I will blot you out, hunt down your every trace! The track of your life has come to me,

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« Reply #8 on: April 13, 2016, 07:50:58 pm »

I'm not sure we can believe Uncle Holy, the text notes these tiny pauses in his answers, which may or may not mean anything.

I can't work it out :)

I think that his pauses are actually him trying to figure out that Inrilatas is really after with all this, rather than him concealing anything.  The scene strikes me as him actually being quite forthcoming to try to divine what the hell this this all about...but again, that could just be window-dressing.

Still, Maitha seems to me to really just be forthright here and there is little to point us to him having lied.

Agreed!

Also, I don't think Kellhus's odds are that good. There are all the nameless ones to consider.
I totally agree. I think we talked about this in another thread. I think the WLW succeeds in killing Kellhus. But, as you say, the question is whether it matters by the time he gets around to doing it. (But note: my favorite crackpot theory right now is that Kellhus is sucked back in time and imprisoned in the Carapace to walk the world as the No-god, and that the final series is entitled "The First Apocalypse.")

While that is interesting, I hope not.  Time travel just seems kind of silly to me.



Glad we can draw a line somewhere ;)

I have a bit of a problem with this. I just finished a re-read of TDTCB, and Kellhus clearly has feelings and passions as a child. In fact, a lot of the training he undertakes as a young Dunyain is to overcome his passions. As late as the climax of TDTCB, when Kellhus is thinking about that meditation exercise (the logos is without...), he is having feelings. So the "blood" really only has to do with their physical and mental advantages, not emotional "advantages."
So why are some of his children born without the ability to feel human emotion? Authorial inconsistency?

I think it has to do with the inherent instability of the hybrids that the Dunyain are inevitably breeding.  Indeed, the fact that most women they try to reproduce with tend to end up with nonviable mixes, producing freakish or at best completely imbalanced children seems to imply some genetic incompatibility.  The results are probably pretty typical, really.

If we can believe what Maitha tells us about Moe's children, his rate of success was 1/6.  Kellhus' actually seems only slightly higher, at 2/6 (Kayûtas, and Serwa) but I think that might speak more to something special about Esmenet than Kellhus.  Still, I think that ultimately, what the Dunyain think they are doing isn't really what they are doing.  I think there is more metaphysical things going on then just the training that they go through, just the training tends to sharpen it.

While you have a point, I'm not sure that does it for me in the category of credibility :-\ I can see the physical defects but the emotional defects seem odd. Why are the hybrids more "Dunyain" at birth than the originals?
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« Reply #9 on: April 13, 2016, 08:00:40 pm »
I've never once thought that Maithenet was lying about anything. I simply have always believed it to be Esme's paranoia and Kel's manipulations. If only Thelli had read his face......

I would think she has though, at least at some point, even inadvertently.  Thing is Kel has manipulated Esmenet to the point of such distrust that she won't believe anything unless it confirms what she is imagining is going on.  Since Inrilatas is the "best face reader" she believes he can see what Theli can't.  Thing is, Theli didn't see anything because there is nothing to see...

Also, I don't think Kellhus's odds are that good. There are all the nameless ones to consider.

Yeah, that's why I say I think it is something special about Esmenet, rather than Kellhus that gives rise to even potentially viable children.

Glad we can draw a line somewhere ;)

I can take a lot for granted, but time travel just isn't one,   8)

While you have a point, I'm not sure that does it for me in the category of credibility :-\ I can see the physical defects but the emotional defects seem odd. Why are the hybrids more "Dunyain" at birth than the originals?

Yeah, I don't know really.  Perhaps because of some kind of interplay between the differences in Nonman emotion and human?  It's unclear really.  Theli shows signs of being something near autistic though, which makes it really uncertain just what, exactly, is wrong with her.  We just know she isn't right...

Perhaps too much Nonman in the mix?  Perhaps too little human?  It could be nearly anything, but I feel it's got something to do with the whole Anasûrimbor blood thing.
“I am a warrior of ages, Anasûrimbor . . . ages. I have dipped my nimil in a thousand hearts. I have ridden both against and for the No-God in the great wars that authored this wilderness. I have scaled the ramparts of great Golgotterath, watched the hearts of High Kings break for fury.” -Cet’ingira

themerchant

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« Reply #10 on: April 13, 2016, 08:05:07 pm »
An honest Dunyain? ;)

When Moe and Kell speak, Moe does continually re-evaluate "scrutiny... calculation..." So it is very probable that is exactly what Uncle Holy was doing as taught. So you might very well be right.

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« Reply #11 on: April 14, 2016, 11:59:56 am »
An honest Dunyain? ;)

When Moe and Kell speak, Moe does continually re-evaluate "scrutiny... calculation..." So it is very probable that is exactly what Uncle Holy was doing as taught. So you might very well be right.

Well, I don't know that I want to call him honest, per se, but in this case, since I really don't think he had any ulterior motive and is sitting in front of someone very adept at reading faces and tones, it's not in his interest to try to deceive Inrilatas.  Not to mention he literally has to reason to.
“I am a warrior of ages, Anasûrimbor . . . ages. I have dipped my nimil in a thousand hearts. I have ridden both against and for the No-God in the great wars that authored this wilderness. I have scaled the ramparts of great Golgotterath, watched the hearts of High Kings break for fury.” -Cet’ingira

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« Reply #12 on: April 17, 2016, 11:35:02 am »
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Call her what you will!” Psatma Nannaferi exclaimed. “Demon? Yes! I worship a demon!—if it pleases you to call her such! You think we worship the Hundred because they are good? Madness governs the Outside, Snakehead, not gods or demons— or even the God! Fool! We worship them because they have power over us. And we— we Yatwerians— worship the one with the most power of all."

Confirms how Akka explains that madness is the Outside leaking into Earwa. And, I'd also venture that it confirms that the more worshippers a God has the more power they have in turn.

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Psatma Nannaferi resumed her appraisal of her miraculous twin in the mirror. “You bear the Water within you,” she said to the Last Cishaurim. She drew a palm across the plane of her abdomen. “Like an ocean! You can strike me down with your merest whim! And yet you stand here bandying threats and insults."

An ocean of Water.......Where did it come from? Huh, you know my answer.

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We walk the Shortest Path,” her divine and heartless husband had told her the last time she had seen him, “the Labyrinth of the Thousandfold Thought. This is the burden the God has laid upon us, and the burden the Gods begrudge."

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Inrilatas seized the opportunity . “You think Mother has blunted Father’s pursuit of the Shortest Path time and again, that he walks in arcs to appease her heart, when he should cleave to the ruthless lines of the Thousandfold Thought."

Two quotes that seem to suggest the Kellhus is still following the Thousandfold Thought.

Quote
You really believe that we Dûnyain differ? That, like fathers, some can be good and some bad?”“I know so,” Maithanet replied.

And here is the crux of Kellhus's intentions. Its as I said, I believe his feelings he acquired throughout PoN for Esme, Serwe and humanity in general; is why he still walks the labyrinth of the Thousandfold Thought. There can be good Dûnyain's.
“No. I am your end. Before your eyes I will put your seed to the knife. I will quarter your carcass and feed it to the dogs. Your bones I will grind to dust and cast to the winds. I will strike down those who speak your name or the name of your fathers, until ‘Yursalka’ becomes as meaningless as infant babble. I will blot you out, hunt down your every trace! The track of your life has come to me,

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« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2016, 03:06:23 pm »


Two quotes that seem to suggest the Kellhus is still following the Thousandfold Thought.

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You really believe that we Dûnyain differ? That, like fathers, some can be good and some bad?”“I know so,” Maithanet replied.

And here is the crux of Kellhus's intentions. Its as I said, I believe his feelings he acquired throughout PoN for Esme, Serwe and humanity in general; is why he still walks the labyrinth of the Thousandfold Thought. There can be good Dûnyain's.

Totally agree. I think his feelings are genuine.
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« Reply #14 on: April 25, 2016, 11:59:03 pm »
I'm only skeptical of Kellhus, after the Bakker quote about his test readers not seeing through his manipulation. And we see in Esmenet's reflections in TJE just how little Kellhus bothered to appease her heart. Still, there may be something  to this.

The Dunyain trade in truth. I believe it was H on a podcast who remarked how his wife found it strange Kellhus is supposed to be a deceiver on a secret mission but he tells everyone who he is and what he's after. It wasn't just a good observation on how he operates, I also thought it added an interesting perspective on why they call themselves the Dunyain and the significance of the salutation 'Truth Shines.'

Inrilatas and Maithanet spend too much time on it for it not to have some significance. Kellhus indicates later to Proyas that he does not love Esmenet but I don't know. I have a feeling this will be revisited in TGO, if Kellhus really did intend Esmenet to succeed the whole time.

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