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What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by anor277, Didact

At the end of detective novels or fantasy novels we often remark at eventual disclosures, "I should have thought of that". I am trying to list those disclosures in TTT that we should reasonably have anticipated.

1. Simas' identity, the disclosure of the Mandate spy, is one thing that we could not reasonably anticipate, and a sorcerous skin spy is a very weak plot device.

2. The origin of the war between the Scarlet Spires and the Cishaurim is something perhaps that we could have accounted for in the 1st 2 novels. The immediate reaction of the Saik when they encountered Skeaös was to blame the Cishaurim. Perhaps we should have twigged that the Cishaurim would have blamed the Scarlet Spires, when Möenghus revealed the first skin spies amongst the Fanim, especially given the fact that we knew that the Consult were also at war wih the Cishaurim.

3. I think someone in the earlier threads speculated that Maithanet was in fact the protege/son of Möenghus. This was an inspired guess because it turned out to be right. It seemed more reasonable to suggest Maithanet was a skin spy. This begs the question why would the skin spies would tolerate such a brilliant individual as head of the 1000 temples? On the other hand why would Maithanet tolerate the skin spy infestation of the 1000 temples - he played a very good hand, especially as there could have been no sorcerous communication between Maithanet and Möenghus as Maithanet was not a sorceror.

Any other comments/suggestions? view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by rycanada, Peralogue

On the Maithanet question: I think Maithanet waited to "make his move" against the Consult because he knows that, unlike Kellhus, he isn't strong enough to repel a concerted Consult assassination attempt. So he had to wait until he was almost en-route to Kellhus in order to purge Sumna, and made sure to purge any skin-spies he encountered en route (so as not to expose himself or Kellhus to danger). view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by unJon, Auditor

The Consult liked Maithenet in that he declared a holy war on the Fanim which suited their purposes admirably. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by rycanada, Peralogue

Thus, Maithanet was essentially using the Consult to help the holy war (which they certainly did). view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by Entropic_existence, Moderator

Personally I don't consider the Sorceror Skin-Spy a weak plot device at all, as I remarked in another thread I think it gives more depth and complexity to the world. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by anor277, Didact

Quote: "Entropic_existence":2k1zw94r
Personally I don't consider the Sorceror Skin-Spy a weak plot device at all, as I remarked in another thread I think it gives more depth and complexity to the world.[/quote:2k1zw94r]

You are of course welcome to have this opinion. My problem is that it gives "more depth and complexity to the world" at the expense of rules that were established earlier in the novel - skin spies are fantastic beasties that are non-sorcerous artefacts, or so Achamian believed. The skin spy who masqueraded as Simas was a fantastic beasty who had sorcerous ability to boot! Quite a nonesuch. In a fantasy novel I think this is a weakness, especially as non-sorcerous skin spies could just as easily have infilitrated the Mandate. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by unJon, Auditor

Anor,

I don't really understand your point. So the rules of the game were not as Akka thought them. Why is this a weakness again? You just kind of assert that it is, but I don't get your reasoning.

Is it a weakness because it's a surprise? I kind of like my novels to not be so predictable or cliched.

Is it because Akka should be infallible? In the start of the novel, sorcery did not exist at all, or so Kellhus believed. Was it a weakness when the rules were changed Kellhus was proved wrong.

What is it about skin-spies that it's bad that they might be sorcerors? They are just creatures like any other. If you prick them, do they not bleed? view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by anor277, Didact

Quote: "unJon":omud46o6
Anor,

I don't really understand your point. So the rules of the game were not as Akka thought them. Why is this a weakness again? You just kind of assert that it is, but I don't get your reasoning.

Is it a weakness because it's a surprise? I kind of like my novels to not be so predictable or cliched.

Is it because Akka should be infallible? In the start of the novel, sorcery did not exist at all, or so Kellhus believed. Was it a weakness when the rules were changed Kellhus was proved wrong.

What is it about skin-spies that it's bad that they might be sorcerors? They are just creatures like any other. If you prick them, do they not bleed?[/quote:omud46o6]

It seems I have not explained myself clearly. It is the author who sets the rules/logic of Earwa (however you spell it) - in the preceding novels skin spies were described as non-sorcerous artefacts. Once you allow one skin spy to practise sorcery, you allow another skin spy to practise sorcery. Therefore the identity of any individual, sorcerous or not, in the Three Seas in any subsequent novel is suspect. The Consult may simply have replaced him or her. How do we know how any identity is safe henceforth? Must Kellhus vouch for them (if he in fact has not been replaced himself)? How can the reader make logical deductions about cause and effect? In the light of this thread's title is my point now clear?

You are free to disagree of course. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by Kingmanor, Candidate

Every fantasy series starts out with assumptions that later prove to be wrong:

LoTR: Frodo will be able to withstand the power of the Ring.
WoT: The male half of the One Source will be forever tainted.
aSoIaF: Stannis Baratheon with his Lightbringer is Azor Ahai reborn.

Just because things change later on doesn't suddenly mean every rule is fair game to be broken. I think its fair to say the legitimate rules of Earwa are spelled out in the Encyclopedic Glossary at the end of TTT, not what certain characters may have thought earlier than that.

Also, the skin-spy is a non-sourcerous artifact in the sense that it was not created with sorcery, it was molded using the Tekne. A Chorae is a sorcerous arifact. Even the Mandate skin-spy was created with Tekne, not with Gnosis. Practicing sorcery has nothing to do with how the skin-spy was created in the first place. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by zarathustra, Peralogue

For me the biggest revelation in TTT was how Cishaurim magic worked. This couldn't have been anticipated. It meant that Moenghus himself could not become as powerful as he wanted to be.
I had always thought that the Scarlet Spires were contolled in some way by the Consult and thought that was the reason the Cishaurim had attacked them under Moenghus' direction.
I guess though if someone needs to call their son for help they can't be all powerful and I wish I had seen that. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by Entropic_existence, Moderator

The biggest, absolute biggest thing here is ton understand that Scott reveals Earwa through the POV of characters, meaning that often what they know is not an absolute truth, it is simply what they believe to be true. This is crucial poiint to understand.

The Skin-Spy with a soul is yet another illustration of the compelxities of the metaphysics (the rules) that govern the world. As Scott has said before on the Q&A board it is "the rare animal on Earwa that achieves a soul." While animals (skin-spies) and such are inherently soulless individuals, this does not mean that through chance, or through combined events/experience they cannot achieve self-awareness, identity, and a soul. All of these fit in perfectly with the theme of the novels as they were laid out throughout the series. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by rycanada, Peralogue

What e_e said. I don't believe that even the skin-spy with a soul is a sorcerous artifact. I think it is an artifact of the Tekne (essentially perverse bio-engineering) which achived self-awareness (having a soul).

Sorcery (qua, window to the outside) wasn't part of the initial equation, it was the result of a very unique individual. When Maithanet mentions that htey have thankfully been unable to reproduce this situation, he's saying that the Consult doesn't know how to trigger / elevate the skin spies to consciousness. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 22 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by anor277, Didact

Quote: "Guest":2joze6ni
Am I the only one that knew from the FIRST time I read TDTCB that Simas was a skin-spy.[/quote:2joze6ni]
Very probably, the internal logic of the first two novels denied the possibility of a sorcerous skin spy.
Even after it was "clarified" that skin spys were souless and thus incapable of practicing sorcery, I knew it was so. I was just waiting to understand HOW.

And we're still waiting to understand. We don't know what a soul is and why its absence would prevent the practice of sorcery.
In that since I was a little disappointed; I'd hoped there would be a much more ingenuitive reason for why it was possible with the Simas-spy. Consider the implications if the Consult found a way to short-cut their way into a soul? Being able to create sorcerers aside, if you can "create" a soul then why can't you discover a way to keep it from being "damned?" It would end the need for an Apocalypse!

In fact one member of the Consult has already achieved that end, cf Shauriatis, the god cheater and one time grandmaster of the Mangaecca. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 23 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by Entropic_existence, Moderator

The Consult has come up with a plan to avoid being Damned, but they have hardly achieved it yet since the world still exists and humanity survived the First Apocalypse <!-- s:) --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_smile.gif" alt=":)" title="Smile" /><!-- s:) -->

As I've said before, the Souled Skin-Spy did not violate any internal logic of the world, it went against what certain characters believed they knew. What characters think they know, the actual truth are often very different thing and this is a narrative device that Scott has employed effectively throughout the series. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 27 February 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by Anubis Reborn, Commoner

could the whole skinspy soul thing be similar to what happened in chapterhouse: dune with the face dancers that id the skin spies are alive long enough and live in the world long enough they might achieve some sort of selfness.

any thoughts on this would be great <!-- s:D --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_biggrin.gif" alt=":D" title="Very Happy" /><!-- s:D --> view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 07 March 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by Spamoram, Candidate

Quote: &quot;anor277&quot;:gizuowvm


3. I think someone in the earlier threads speculated that Maithanet was in fact the protege/son of Möenghus. This was an inspired guess because it turned out to be right. It seemed more reasonable to suggest Maithanet was a skin spy. This begs the question why would the skin spies would tolerate such a brilliant individual as head of the 1000 temples? On the other hand why would Maithanet tolerate the skin spy infestation of the 1000 temples - he played a very good hand, especially as there could have been no sorcerous communication between Maithanet and Möenghus as Maithanet was not a sorceror.

Any other comments/suggestions?[/quote:gizuowvm]


I'm just here to give myself Kudos :p view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 09 March 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by Warrior-Poet, Moderator

Yes I agree there are numerous similarities between Dune and Prince of Nothing as I said in another thread, and that is an excellent example of one. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 09 March 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by anor277, Didact

Quote: &quot;Warrior-Poet&quot;:uf9q75og
Yes I agree there are numerous similarities between Dune and Prince of Nothing as I said in another thread, and that is an excellent example of one.[/quote:uf9q75og]

Just as an another possible example of Bakker paying homage to earlier science fiction/fantasy last night I picked up an old copy of The Magician's Nephew which is the forerunner to The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. The terrible witch queen Jadis, did have a sorcerous mark, and she claimed to see a much more dilute "mark" in Uncle Andrew (a very low sorceror). I wonder if Bakker, years ago, ever read the Narnia series (likely) and if the idea of a sorcerous stain developed from here. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 09 March 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by Warrior-Poet, Moderator

Yes that is also a good example I hadn't thought of. Even though the idea of witches, sorcerers, etc being marked has been around for quite some time. view post


What should we have anticipated? posted 09 March 2006 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWhat should we have anticipated? by unJon, Auditor

True WP, I think we can trace back the idea of a sorceror being marked at least as far back as the Christian idea of witches having the mark of the devil. Likely Christianity borrowed this idea from somewhere else that I'm not aware of. view post


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