Who attacked the Scarlet Spires and why?

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locke

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« Reply #45 on: January 07, 2014, 06:59:17 pm »
So here's an idea, perhaps The Thousand Fold Thought is the Dunyain reducing "The World Conspires" to first principles to understand what comes before "The World Conspires"

perhaps these "what are the thousand fold thoughts posts should be moved to the what is the thousand fold thought thread?

Madness

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« Reply #46 on: January 08, 2014, 01:42:49 am »
There are only a couple. Not enough depth in them to warrant the move, I don't think?
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mrganondorf

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« Reply #47 on: February 19, 2014, 12:37:45 am »
I'm going to go with the notion that the Cish killers were sent from Moe, BUT I don't want to rule out other Dunyain interaction.  I could see a Dunyain/Cishaurim conspiracy stretching way back.  Dunyain+Cishaurim would make the execution of the TTT eeeeaaassy (what with all the little circumstances that needed to happen before the holy war to eventually get all of the 3 seas under one umbrella).

@ locke - I think that skull stumble is vary important too.  Whatever Kellhus' plans, there's going to be something unforseen and deadly in his blindspot.

Also like your point that a consult skin spy in atyersus would just do the obvious thing and destroy the heart.  Even if there are a lot of wars and even if the Consult are playing a long con, it seems too important to simply snuff out Seswatha in the world to pass up.

@ Francis Buck - As for Moe getting his followers to die for him, that really clashes with Kellhus' assertion that Moe only had power when he had the ear of the great.  This makes me think that Moe's water level is really really irrelevant so long as he's got others to do it.

@ Madness - I had never considered the discovery of the skin spies as anything other than a Moe thing!  +1!!!  That would be cool, the Cish playing a game deeper than the Dunyain, making a tool out of the slavers!

As far as Moe thinking about what sorcery Kellhus would acquire, I think Moe would have been in the south long enough to know that the gnosis was preferable to the anagogis, BUT I totally agree with you that Akka is too much of a wild card.  I bet that Moe was planning on Kellhus getting the easier to get magic first, and then being so awesome with it + holy mission of destroying Consult = he would eventually get the gnosis.

THAT IS, unless Moe/Dunyain/Cish are manipulating events at a very specific level.  They could do it with enough Cishaurim and lordy knows that Moe has been in the south long enough to have a Cish army far larger than the SS's estimation.  In that case, Akka is just pushed into Kellhus' path.

Back to Moe, why does he lack the gnosis?  He would certainly know about it and would have all the means to capture/seduce a mandati, thus: 1) the psukhe prevents his acquisition of the gnosis or 2) he doesn't want it.  I'm thinking its #2, Kellhus gets to be damned for the sake of all the rest of the Dunyain/World.

@ Curethan - I'm really torn about the difference in sight between Kell/Moe.  I think it might be somewhat plausible that using snakes to see makes you see even better.  I wonder what the limit is on Moe's seeing-through-critters?  Could he watch Kellhus through a Sranc's eyes in snowy north?

@ Borric - I have to agree with you, I think that the assassination/invitation to the SS was Moe's way of efficiently including another great power of the 3 seas into the new union.  Without this motivation, who knows, maybe the SS would have forbid Ainon's involvement in the holy war, thus making it harder to overcome Kian/Nilnamesh and setting up more conflict in Ainon later (even more than Kellhus had to deal with anyways).

@ Somnambulist - Totally!  The SS had to be humbled in order to be dominated.

@ Wiltshire - I don't know, I think Moe would have projected Kellhus getting sorcery much sooner than he actually did.  It took Kellhus so little time to actually learn the gnosis once he got started, in an alternate world, Kellhus ends up near the SS early on and has the Anagogis before they even get out of the desert?

@ themerchant - I love the idea that Somas is Moe-made!  That would tie up something that I've been worried about: how can Maitha & Co be so sure that Somas is an accident?  I was wondering if the Ordeal was going to be overun by a hoarde of skinspy sorcerors.  You have converted me.  Welp, I wonder where else Moe has got his skinspy magicians and wtf are they doing?

locke

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« Reply #48 on: February 19, 2014, 07:00:43 pm »

@ Francis Buck - As for Moe getting his followers to die for him, that really clashes with Kellhus' assertion that Moe only had power when he had the ear of the great.  This makes me think that Moe's water level is really really irrelevant so long as he's got others to do it.
...
Back to Moe, why does he lack the gnosis?  He would certainly know about it and would have all the means to capture/seduce a mandati, thus: 1) the psukhe prevents his acquisition of the gnosis or 2 he) doesn't want it.  I'm thinking its #2, Kellhus gets to be damned for the sake of all the rest of the Dunyain/World.

Firstly, brilliant to take the tact that Moe's water level is irrelevant, that is a wonderful insight.  Remember that the Scarlet Spires refer to Cishaurim attacks as "Concerts."

What does every Concert need?  A Conductor. 

Moe is a Cishaurim Conductor, and the level of his water is irrelevant if he can get his Cishaurim concerts to sing in perfect unison or use them to weave complex meta-water spells (such as translation/teleportation, opening the door into the Scarlet Spires' war council) together in a way that other Cishaurim Conductors cannot.  Since the other schools are so individualistic and egotistic, they might never realize that the Cishaurim are more collective in their approach...  The idea is delicious and it is hiding in plain sight.

Secondly, I agree, Moe did not want the gnosis.  Why?  Because the gnosis would mark him.  Cold Blooded bastard had his son get damned instead.

mrganondorf

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« Reply #49 on: February 25, 2014, 05:53:58 pm »
I may have screwed it up, but I thought that a concert was just any kind of group of sorcerers acting in harmony.  Don't know?

Shae--living concert!!!

"cold-blooded bastard" -- kind of hoping we find out that Kellhus isn't even Moe's kid, just another one of the welps with most of the dunyain talent but consigned to the fate of defects...until! they find out that's he's got just the level of narcissism that would work to mold him into a tool

:)

Triskele

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« Reply #50 on: September 05, 2014, 04:28:19 am »
Wow, the idea of Moe getting Kell damned is amazing, but I am not ready to sign on just yet.

Thoughts having just reread the thread: 

You know how in society today we call people "Truthers" if they believe in something that is largely considered a conspiracy theory?  Such as "9/11 Truther?"  Well, I think locke is the leader of the Moenghus Truthers, and I am a follower.  I love the idea of Moe having played a deeper game all along and Kellhus having overlooked things. 

What's so agonizing about this is that the text seems to give both sides of this plenty of evidence.  There is plenty of food-for-thought to think Kellhus is wrong and Moe is doing it all (fucking love the "conductor"  comment too).  But the explanation that the reader is given for how Moe met a dead end is also totally plausible, so what to do with it all at this point. 

But here's one more bit that has always tripped me up and why I personally find even more evidence for Moe being behind it all:

When Kellhus is Kelsplaining stuff to Moe, he suggests that Moe met a dead end because the Cishaurim's own lack of understanding of whatever underlying principles of the Pshukhe.  I find this hard to believe for a couple of reasons.  For one, the Cish don't seem like pure religious fanatics:  they seem like really enlightened monks from a pre-tech or scientific method world; hardly idiots who just love the Transcendent God the most.  But even if we accept that the Psukhe can't be mapped like the Gnosis can be, I still find it really hard to believe that Moenghus took such an incredible risk and got it so wrong.  The Cish don't understand their craft?  Could be, but Moenghus is Dunyain, motherfucker.  If Kellhus made an error kicking a skull, Moenghus made a lightyears-worse mistake letting someone blind him for something he didn't understand.  Not really plausible.  I get a bit defensive about folks at Westeros nitpicking any potential mistake of consistency that Bakker could have made, but this one I do find hard to explain.  The reader is beaten over the head with versions of "30 years, Father...." obviously touching on Kel's realization about how crazy-good Moe must be amongst the world-born.  Moe wasn't fresh out of Ishual when he agreed to be blinded by the Cish.  Curious. 

That being said, we do know that Moe was blinded and became Cishaurim. 


Cüréthañ

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« Reply #51 on: September 05, 2014, 06:04:44 am »
Cish philosophy seems to mesh somewhat with Dunyain beliefs.

Transcendent, unconscious god - check. 
The hundred and the outside as warped products of history and TDTCB - check. 
An alternate way of viewing the world that reveals Dunyain as superior beings - check.
For both of them, their power springs from mastering the passions within. 

If Kellhus' suppositions are correct it is simply that the dunyain method of mastery simply precludes the fulcrum that powers the flow of the water. Like Moe has used that power source to fuel the Dunyain ability to cleave and bind the souls of others - and when it comes to unleashing their own soul the power socket doesn't fit or is already in use.  In which case Moe was misled by the similarities between their metaphysics and was tripped up by an unexpected incompatibility.

Alternately, perhaps they are compatible and Moe has levels of control of the Psukhe that Kellhus can't even guess at, as theorized, because he has been misled by Moe.
Retracing his bloody footprints, the Wizard limped on.

The Sharmat

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« Reply #52 on: September 05, 2014, 09:19:35 pm »
Yes I believe Maithanet's letter about Achamian was just he and Moenghus, as a Dunyain would say "Moving to exploit a fortuitous correspondence of cause." They did not move Achamian there, nor did they assume the Mandate would be there. But they immediately recognized the opportunity for what it was nonetheless.

The idea that when Moenghus says "translating" he means translating location for location ala a Psukhari version of the Meta-Gnostic Cant of Transposition is interesting. Certainly, we've seen him bend the distances between spaces before, as Mallahet, when he allows the Emperor and Skauras to speak face-to-face despite Skauras still being in Shigek

I also completely agree that there is a strong possibility that the Cishaurim attack on the Scarlet Spires was at Moenghus' bidding. In fact there's kind of a weakness in his story here: Why would the Cishaurim believe the Scarlet Spires were behind the Skin Spies? The Cishaurim can see the mark of sorcery as well as any of the Few, and have no reason to believe the Scarlet Spires have suddenly learned how to hide their mark.

Further (and this actually lends weight to some of my upcoming points), despite the impressiveness of their ability to penetrate to the heart of the Scarlet Spires and the advantage of surprise...they still had to deal with the fact that they were in the heart of the Scarlet Spires, completely surrounded by the enemy, who would soon beset them from all sides as soon a the shock wore off. Those Cishaurim were sent there to die, and they probably knew it. The kind of devotion that would lead men to such a sacrifice simply to provoke a fight is something we normally see reserved only for Dunyain

@ Curethan - I'm really torn about the difference in sight between Kell/Moe.  I think it might be somewhat plausible that using snakes to see makes you see even better.  I wonder what the limit is on Moe's seeing-through-critters?  Could he watch Kellhus through a Sranc's eyes in snowy north?
The scenario outlines by Kellhus is plausible in this regard. Snakes have fairly poor eyesight, and on top of that, lack the vast amount of brain space a human uses to analyze the differences between faces, which is an absolutely crucial Dunyain technique.

The problem is there are enough uncertainties that Kellhus' story being wrong is also plausible. For one thing, Cishaurim don't seem to have face-blindness (a real medical condition actually, that leaves sufferers unable to tell people apart by their faces). So either the lack of facial interpretation hardware in a snake brain is irrelevant in the metaphysics of their bonding to the psukhari-OR the Cishaurim upon losing their eyes gain new kinds of sight. A Dunyain that could see a soul could be just as powerful a manipulator of men as one that saw the movements of the facial muscles, if not more so.

Four things bother me about the idea that Moenghus lost his perceptive abilities with his original eyes. One may be utterly meaningless thought.

1. The Cishaurim that Kellhus met at the fall of Caraskand, who was apparently so indoctrinated towards Moenghus that he was willing to die simply to deliver a message for him. The message, tellingly, ending with "the Logos is without beginning or end." Moenghus ensnaring those around him by sharing partial revelations of Dunyain philosophy, trading bits of truth for leverage with which to control others, is classic Dunyain, and Kellhus has been doing it since he met the tracker in Kuniuri.

2. Cememketri says when Mallahet (who we now know to be Moenghus) comes as emissary for Skauras to the Emperor before the Holy War that the Cishaurim esteem Mallahet above all others, that the only reason he has not ascended to the rank of Heresiarch is that the law explicitly forbids a non-Kianene from holding the office. In the same sentence he also expressed dismay at Mallahet/Moenghus's purported tremendous power with the Water, but that's another issue, and could, admittedly, be the result entirely of propaganda.

3. Maithanet serves him unquestioningly. It seems to me that whenever we see two individuals that have more than a little Dunyain in them meet, a struggle for power is inevitable. They seem almost pathologically unable to avoid the attempt to master all circumstances around them, including their fellows. Maithanet was skilled in the Dunyain arts as best as Moenghus was able to do. Maithanet is as a result quite skilled at reading faces, and is only slightly inferior to Kellhus in that regard. If Moenghus had truly lost his ability to read men as a Dunyain does, then he handed a powerful weapon against himself to Maithanet. That Maithanet never decided that he could do better than his defective father and usurped him would seem to me to indicate that Moenghus retained the ability to make others his willing slaves. White-Luck Warrior Spoilers
(click to show/hide)
. Maithanet is operating independently of his father for long periods of time and possesses great power in his Dunyain training and temporal power as leader of the Thousand Temples. Yet he still follows Moenghus's commands until he arrives to find him dead at Kellhus' hands.

As an aside, even if Moenghus did lose his Dunyain insight with his eyes, he could have just as easily assume the role of shadow ruler over the Cishaurim through Maithanet, if he so chose. We clearly see he commanded Maithanet's devotion, and Maithanet could have easily been crafted as a puppet ruler over the Kianene and the Cishaurim through which Moenghus could work his will, just as Maithanet becomes his instument in the Thousand Temples.

4. At some point in his exchange with Kellhus he explains "I have not my eyes with me. I walk this place from memory."

Not very long afterwards at all, his "eyes" (the snakes) pop out of the shadows they'd been keeping to to avoid Kellhus' scrutiny the instant Moenghus needed them. Moenghus is a blatant liar. And it's possible that this has greater significance, that this is a littler literary hint, and that the snakes were not the only set of eyes he was lying about. His apparent admission that Kellhus was correct and that he lost the greater share of his power over the world born with his eye sight could have been just as much an outright lie as "I have not my eyes with me." was in the other  context.

.

@ Francis Buck - As for Moe getting his followers to die for him, that really clashes with Kellhus' assertion that Moe only had power when he had the ear of the great.  This makes me think that Moe's water level is really really irrelevant so long as he's got others to do it.
...
Back to Moe, why does he lack the gnosis?  He would certainly know about it and would have all the means to capture/seduce a mandati, thus: 1) the psukhe prevents his acquisition of the gnosis or 2 he) doesn't want it.  I'm thinking its #2, Kellhus gets to be damned for the sake of all the rest of the Dunyain/World.

Firstly, brilliant to take the tact that Moe's water level is irrelevant, that is a wonderful insight.  Remember that the Scarlet Spires refer to Cishaurim attacks as "Concerts."

What does every Concert need?  A Conductor. 

Moe is a Cishaurim Conductor, and the level of his water is irrelevant if he can get his Cishaurim concerts to sing in perfect unison or use them to weave complex meta-water spells (such as translation/teleportation, opening the door into the Scarlet Spires' war council) together in a way that other Cishaurim Conductors cannot.  Since the other schools are so individualistic and egotistic, they might never realize that the Cishaurim are more collective in their approach...  The idea is delicious and it is hiding in plain sight.

A very interesting idea and a plausible alternate take on his facility with the water that would make the things he said to Kellhus about calling, scrying, and translating being the elements of the Psukhe he had "some facility" with merely half truths meant to mislead instead of outright lies. A very Dunyain tactic.

This might also go some way to explain the apparently drastic discrepancy between the power of the weakest practitioners of the Psukhe and the most powerful. Perhaps the lowest level of them suck at Concerts, where as the Primaries and the Incandati are prodigies at it, and get far more of a boost from it than the lower level psukhari.

Still, I'm not entirely convinced. It's internally consistent and has some fun implications, but there's not enough hard textual evidence there to make me a true believer yet. Could be though. I won't be shocked if it turns out to be true somehow.

If Kellhus made an error kicking a skull, Moenghus made a lightyears-worse mistake letting someone blind him for something he didn't understand.
I've always taken it that it's literally impossible to apprehend the Psukhe on a fundamental level without being blinded. So it's possible it was just a calculated risk he had to take.

Alternately, perhaps they are compatible and Moe has levels of control of the Psukhe that Kellhus can't even guess at, as theorized, because he has been misled by Moe.
And yet he's still undone by a madman with a Chorae. There's just no escaping that quandry with sorcery.

Wilshire

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« Reply #53 on: September 10, 2014, 03:13:10 am »
My bid is that Moenghus gambled and lost, as you have said, both arguments exist and I've had to pick a side, though you all have gone a long way to make me wonder...


As for Maithanet, consider that it seems that all the children respect the Pragma. Moe was the one doing the conditioning, as the Pragma to him. I don't find it at all hard to believe that Maithanet found it inconceivable to rebel against his absent father, but disagreed with his half-brother, his father's first son who murdered his beloved daddy.

Quote from:  The Sharmat
Quote
Quote from: Triskele on September 05, 2014, 12:28:19 am
If Kellhus made an error kicking a skull, Moenghus made a lightyears-worse mistake letting someone blind him for something he didn't understand.
I've always taken it that it's literally impossible to apprehend the Psukhe on a fundamental level without being blinded. So it's possible it was just a calculated risk he had to take.
When all possible answers are ruled out, you must consider the impossible.

Moenghus was just as capable as making mistakes as Kellhus.  Probabilities suck because every so often, that 1% happens. I think Moe's trials broke him physically, the swazand on his arms, the blindness, and eventually the failed conflict with son. Wherever it was that he made his first mistake, it was unforgiving, and lead him down a path that forced him to make concessions to survive. An old, beaten and bruised Dunyain, grasping at one last hope to conquer all, and losing. Moe is a tragedy. Though more capable than his son, potentially in every way, he was broken on the knee of the world. Kellhus, stumbling along, getting lucky over and over, succeeding where his father should have been. Anagke, Fate, The Whore, getting her way.



Conductor of concerts? That is quite brilliant. I like that a lot.
Moe getting his own son damned on purpose, also incredible.

Honestly, I'll not be upset if I'm wrong. There is enough vagueness for me to concede with just a hair more evidence either way. TUC, the masses beckon..
One of the other conditions of possibility.

locke

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« Reply #54 on: September 10, 2014, 06:35:05 am »
See this is why I need to collect my insanities into one place that conductor bit is long forgotten by me and is fucking awesome

All typ0s courtesy of Samsung.


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« Reply #55 on: September 10, 2014, 10:41:37 am »
When Kellhus is Kelsplaining stuff to Moe, he suggests that Moe met a dead end because the Cishaurim's own lack of understanding of whatever underlying principles of the Pshukhe.  I find this hard to believe for a couple of reasons.  For one, the Cish don't seem like pure religious fanatics:  they seem like really enlightened monks from a pre-tech or scientific method world; hardly idiots who just love the Transcendent God the most.  But even if we accept that the Psukhe can't be mapped like the Gnosis can be, I still find it really hard to believe that Moenghus took such an incredible risk and got it so wrong.  The Cish don't understand their craft?  Could be, but Moenghus is Dunyain, motherfucker.  If Kellhus made an error kicking a skull, Moenghus made a lightyears-worse mistake letting someone blind him for something he didn't understand.  Not really plausible.  I get a bit defensive about folks at Westeros nitpicking any potential mistake of consistency that Bakker could have made, but this one I do find hard to explain.  The reader is beaten over the head with versions of "30 years, Father...." obviously touching on Kel's realization about how crazy-good Moe must be amongst the world-born.  Moe wasn't fresh out of Ishual when he agreed to be blinded by the Cish.  Curious.

According to the Kel x. Moe scene, Kellhus only understood that his father is weaker than him because he had grasped TTT. If Moenghus is to be believed, he spent years as Cishaurim before he understood TTT himself. So that could be a possible explanation as to how he could have chosen the Cishaurim even though it is not to his advantage. Also, bear in mind that Kellhus had Achamian as teacher before he knew much about the Psukhe or the Gnosis.

The Sharmat

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« Reply #56 on: September 10, 2014, 04:40:29 pm »
My bid is that Moenghus gambled and lost, as you have said, both arguments exist and I've had to pick a side, though you all have gone a long way to make me wonder...

As for Maithanet, consider that it seems that all the children respect the Pragma. Moe was the one doing the conditioning, as the Pragma to him. I don't find it at all hard to believe that Maithanet found it inconceivable to rebel against his absent father, but disagreed with his half-brother, his father's first son who murdered his beloved daddy.
They respect the Pragma because the Pragma have power over them. They do not love the Pragma. And I doubt Maithanet's relationship with Moenghus was particularly loving either.

EkyannusIII

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« Reply #57 on: September 11, 2014, 04:54:56 pm »
But here's one more bit that has always tripped me up and why I personally find even more evidence for Moe being behind it all:

When Kellhus is Kelsplaining stuff to Moe, he suggests that Moe met a dead end because the Cishaurim's own lack of understanding of whatever underlying principles of the Pshukhe.  I find this hard to believe for a couple of reasons.  For one, the Cish don't seem like pure religious fanatics:  they seem like really enlightened monks from a pre-tech or scientific method world; hardly idiots who just love the Transcendent God the most.  But even if we accept that the Psukhe can't be mapped like the Gnosis can be, I still find it really hard to believe that Moenghus took such an incredible risk and got it so wrong.  The Cish don't understand their craft?  Could be, but Moenghus is Dunyain, motherfucker.  If Kellhus made an error kicking a skull, Moenghus made a lightyears-worse mistake letting someone blind him for something he didn't understand.  Not really plausible. 

Simplest explanation is that Bakker missed a stitch in making a consistent history for Papa Moe.
What is reason, but the blindness of the soul?

R. SCOTT RAP3ZT TERRIBLEZ LOLZ.

if Kellhus was thinking all of this, he's going to freak out when he get's back and Kelmomas is all "i lieks to eatum peeples da"

the whole thing is orchestrated by Kellhus who is wearing a Bashrag as if it were a suit

EkyannusIII

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« Reply #58 on: September 11, 2014, 05:02:49 pm »
My bid is that Moenghus gambled and lost, as you have said, both arguments exist and I've had to pick a side, though you all have gone a long way to make me wonder...

As for Maithanet, consider that it seems that all the children respect the Pragma. Moe was the one doing the conditioning, as the Pragma to him. I don't find it at all hard to believe that Maithanet found it inconceivable to rebel against his absent father, but disagreed with his half-brother, his father's first son who murdered his beloved daddy.
They respect the Pragma because the Pragma have power over them. They do not love the Pragma. And I doubt Maithanet's relationship with Moenghus was particularly loving either.

Probably not.  I am disappointed that we never got Maithanet as a viewpoint character. I also wish Bakker had written him as an example of hybrid vigor instead of being a half-breed mule.
What is reason, but the blindness of the soul?

R. SCOTT RAP3ZT TERRIBLEZ LOLZ.

if Kellhus was thinking all of this, he's going to freak out when he get's back and Kelmomas is all "i lieks to eatum peeples da"

the whole thing is orchestrated by Kellhus who is wearing a Bashrag as if it were a suit

The Sharmat

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« Reply #59 on: September 11, 2014, 08:57:42 pm »
Is Maithanet not an example of hybrid vigor? Aspect Emperor Spoilers:
(click to show/hide)

That said hybrid vigor is something that occurs after a relatively short period of inbreeding is mixed with outbreeding. That's not quite the same as two thousand years of genetic drift and selective breeding in a tiny base population.