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  •  » FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

#851 2017-11-26 00:13:59

ylvs
Mantis
From: Art Central
Registered: 2001-06-19
Posts: 13414

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

To me the expanding of the Scrollbearers is a given. And Aengas will be the first new member.

*nods*

 

#852 2017-11-26 03:41:57

Firsfron of Ronchester
Mantis
From: Ronchester
Registered: 2001-06-04
Posts: 23418
Website

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

ylvs wrote:

To me the expanding of the Scrollbearers is a given. And Aengas will be the first new member.

*nods*

You're probably right, Ylvs! Given time, we'll know for sure. (What of Jarnulf and his silver League pendant? isn't he the first new member?)


Scrollbearer, Keeper of the Firsfronicon, Message Board Poet Lariat and Guardian of the Wild Range.
Co-titan of fact-checking and priceless source of Osten-Ard-iana
Now-official Osten Ard consultant for Tad Williams

Ommu is horrifying; Akhenabi is f**king evil; Makho is Trump with a badass sword; Jijibo is the crackhead version of Towser.  And Saomeji is creepy. --Cyan

 

#853 2017-12-01 12:46:31

ajl3
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-02-14
Posts: 391

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Page 346 of the US hardcover:

Miri calls Jarnulf "Jarnalf" and Simon makes a point to correct her on the name.

Alf/Alfred being Old English for "elf" may lend fuel to some theory-fires, though I still wouldn't understand his lack of - for not knowing a better phrase - Norn/halfbreed "racial bonuses" (slips on ice, can't climb as well as even Nezeru naturally can, etc.). The only thing that still fits this is if he's a) the halfbreed of a halfbreed b) born from a Norn mother and his Rimmer mother is actually an adoptive mom - i.e., maybe her husband is his father.

 

#854 2017-12-01 21:07:12

Firsfron of Ronchester
Mantis
From: Ronchester
Registered: 2001-06-04
Posts: 23418
Website

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

ajl3 wrote:

Page 346 of the US hardcover:

Miri calls Jarnulf "Jarnalf" and Simon makes a point to correct her on the name.

Alf/Alfred being Old English for "elf" may lend fuel to some theory-fires, though I still wouldn't understand his lack of - for not knowing a better phrase - Norn/halfbreed "racial bonuses" (slips on ice, can't climb as well as even Nezeru naturally can, etc.). The only thing that still fits this is if he's a) the halfbreed of a halfbreed b) born from a Norn mother and his Rimmer mother is actually an adoptive mom - i.e., maybe her husband is his father.

It's because Jarnulf is so clumsy that I find it hard to believe he's even a half-blood. As you say, he doesn't even have the grace of half-blood Nezeru. A half-blood of a half-blood would likely be more clumsy, though, so I could buy that theory... But Jarnulf never thinks of his mother as a half-breed. So could it have been his original father?


Scrollbearer, Keeper of the Firsfronicon, Message Board Poet Lariat and Guardian of the Wild Range.
Co-titan of fact-checking and priceless source of Osten-Ard-iana
Now-official Osten Ard consultant for Tad Williams

Ommu is horrifying; Akhenabi is f**king evil; Makho is Trump with a badass sword; Jijibo is the crackhead version of Towser.  And Saomeji is creepy. --Cyan

 

#855 2017-12-02 01:37:28

ylvs
Mantis
From: Art Central
Registered: 2001-06-19
Posts: 13414

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

ajl3 wrote:

Page 346 of the US hardcover:

Miri calls Jarnulf "Jarnalf" and Simon makes a point to correct her on the name.

Alf/Alfred being Old English for "elf" may lend fuel to some theory-fires, though I still wouldn't understand his lack of - for not knowing a better phrase - Norn/halfbreed "racial bonuses" (slips on ice, can't climb as well as even Nezeru naturally can, etc.). The only thing that still fits this is if he's a) the halfbreed of a halfbreed b) born from a Norn mother and his Rimmer mother is actually an adoptive mom - i.e., maybe her husband is his father.

Sorry, not sure I properly understand. Do you deduct from the name than he might have Nornblood? Or are there other hints I am missing? I never noticed anything that made me think he was other than simply human.

Further explantion appreciated :-)

 

#856 2017-12-02 11:50:44

ajl3
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-02-14
Posts: 391

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

ylvs wrote:

ajl3 wrote:

Page 346 of the US hardcover:

Miri calls Jarnulf "Jarnalf" and Simon makes a point to correct her on the name.

Alf/Alfred being Old English for "elf" may lend fuel to some theory-fires, though I still wouldn't understand his lack of - for not knowing a better phrase - Norn/halfbreed "racial bonuses" (slips on ice, can't climb as well as even Nezeru naturally can, etc.). The only thing that still fits this is if he's a) the halfbreed of a halfbreed b) born from a Norn mother and his Rimmer mother is actually an adoptive mom - i.e., maybe her husband is his father.

Sorry, not sure I properly understand. Do you deduct from the name than he might have Nornblood? Or are there other hints I am missing? I never noticed anything that made me think he was other than simply human.

Further explantion appreciated :-)

Much earlier in the thread we gave it as a small possibility due to Nezeru's description of his very Nornish build and hair so blond it could be white (and the strange scent he has, "washed out" or something like that). I mostly saw that as Tad's use of POV: of course she interprets someone she finds interesting as more like her. But the "-alf" ending is interesting.

 

#857 2017-12-05 03:53:17

ajl3
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-02-14
Posts: 391

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Very, very interesting conversation on page 210 of the US hardcover (that's Chapter 17, White Hand, for those with other editions, should be the first or second Nezeru scene):

-Saomeji talks about Akhenabi and says his master studies the stars and knows their paths ("can read them like a book"). This sounds similar to Pryrates and his work at Hjeldin, but it's not the biggest take from the conversation.

-Akhenabi knows the darkness between the stars. Not the lack of light, Saomeji clarifies, but the darkness. This also brings to mind the Queen's "light of other worlds" line, to me, and the Darkness from the Fortis book.

-At the end of the conversation, we learn that Saomeji has gone into the deeps far below Nakkiga (the Forbidden Depths from Heart of What Was Lost that Viyeki is supposed to dig into? Possibly, since in that book it is described as a place only Singers can safely return from) but he describes himself as sometimes believing he is mad. There's a fire in his blood and it will burn him up or take him over.

Are the Singers compromised or otherwise being influenced by whatever is in the Forbidden Depths? I would assume it would be tied to their order's connection and fooling with the Veil. Tzoja also notes that even the youngest of them can seemingly turn dark and strange - could this influence be why?

Last edited by ajl3 (2017-12-05 03:55:03)

 

#858 2017-12-05 22:53:45

Firsfron of Ronchester
Mantis
From: Ronchester
Registered: 2001-06-04
Posts: 23418
Website

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

ajl3 wrote:

Very, very interesting conversation on page 210 of the US hardcover (that's Chapter 17, White Hand, for those with other editions, should be the first or second Nezeru scene):

-Saomeji talks about Akhenabi and says his master studies the stars and knows their paths ("can read them like a book"). This sounds similar to Pryrates and his work at Hjeldin, but it's not the biggest take from the conversation.

-Akhenabi knows the darkness between the stars. Not the lack of light, Saomeji clarifies, but the darkness. This also brings to mind the Queen's "light of other worlds" line, to me, and the Darkness from the Fortis book.

Is it possible that the Darkness has something to do with Unbeing?

-At the end of the conversation, we learn that Saomeji has gone into the deeps far below Nakkiga (the Forbidden Depths from Heart of What Was Lost that Viyeki is supposed to dig into? Possibly, since in that book it is described as a place only Singers can safely return from) but he describes himself as sometimes believing he is mad. There's a fire in his blood and it will burn him up or take him over.

Are the Singers compromised or otherwise being influenced by whatever is in the Forbidden Depths? I would assume it would be tied to their order's connection and fooling with the Veil. Tzoja also notes that even the youngest of them can seemingly turn dark and strange - could this influence be why?

The phrase turning "dark and strange" reminds me of how Ineluki grew fell/strange after the exile of his brother Hakatri. Coincidence?


Scrollbearer, Keeper of the Firsfronicon, Message Board Poet Lariat and Guardian of the Wild Range.
Co-titan of fact-checking and priceless source of Osten-Ard-iana
Now-official Osten Ard consultant for Tad Williams

Ommu is horrifying; Akhenabi is f**king evil; Makho is Trump with a badass sword; Jijibo is the crackhead version of Towser.  And Saomeji is creepy. --Cyan

 

#859 2017-12-06 13:18:21

ajl3
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-02-14
Posts: 391

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Firsfron of Ronchester wrote:

Is it possible that the Darkness has something to do with Unbeing?

I'm not clear on that, but I'm assuming all of it has to do with the corruption Ineluki unleashed. Falling stars were involved in the creation of the swords, which also involved the main Witchwood under Asu'a (and presumably started to kill them) and in turn has started to corrupt the Tinukeda'ya. My best guess at why they're turning more bestial, for lack of a better word, is the corruption, though if we look at it in a certain way, losing your sentience, magic gifts, etc. could be considered a type of "unbeing."

The Darkness is almost definitely the corruption (recall the quote I found from The Burning Man, where there is a mist about the Witchwood described as "pure Darkness"), but if that's also Unbeing I'm not sure. I'm actually less and less kidding now in dubbing this evil force a thought-being like from Otherland, though - it would make sense with all the talk of stars and space etc.

The phrase turning "dark and strange" reminds me of how Ineluki grew fell/strange after the exile of his brother Hakatri. Coincidence?

I think the Ineluki phrase was "dark and fell" (I love that one) and I can't recall the exact phrasing Tzoja used, just that they could get very weird even in their first years as Singers (if anyone wants to look it up, it's when she's creeping through Nakkiga to get to the lake.) I do think it's enough to at least consider that "singing" and essentially fooling with the forces they have been is generally Not Good.

 

#860 2017-12-14 13:58:32

ajl3
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-02-14
Posts: 391

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Another random thought: one of the songs used is "She is Ever Fair." We only get a few lines, but might this be a case of Utuk'ku "inspiring" mortal culture, like Ineluki/the Rimmer god that's like Loki that I forget, Fire Dancers, Morriga, etc.? On the surface it's about a woman who never loses her beauty while her suitors age and die, but in a world where immortals exist, it's worth considering.

I always wondered the same about Tiamak's death god, "She Who Waits To Take All Back" (just based on the name.)

 

#861 2018-01-08 06:09:05

Ommu
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-10-20
Posts: 10

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Ad1tu wrote:

Firsfron of Ronchester wrote:

RS wrote:

On page 119 of TWC it stated that there where five Singers that became the Red Hand (Karkkaraji, Sutekhi, Ommu, Enah-gé and Uloruzu).  In MST they founded the five houses, but the fifth was Asua, and only Ineluki was there. This had led me to think Ineluki was part of the Red Hand. Apparently this is not the case. So what did the fifth do ?

This is a really good question, and it deserves some serious discussion. There were only five A'genay'asu'e (Thisterborg, Naglimund, Wentmouth, Wailing Stone at Hasu Vale, and Asu'a), but five Red Hand members plus Ineluki. Is that why Ommu was resurrectable? Are the others resurrectable? Is resurrectable even a word?

Or is it a sign that the Sixth House has yet to be built? And if so, what would that mean?

Oh wow I never noticed this! But I think it is a really good question. We see the Red Hand in MS&T, in DBC, through Simon on Thisterborg (sp?) Are there five there? (Also, is it Ineluki who creates the Fifth House, or was it Utuk'ku or even Pryrates? Not that it matters if we're really minus a Red Hand, but more for curiosity's sake.)

And while the question of resurrectability is important, I also wonder: If it WAS Ommu, where was she supposed to be, and was she really there?

Utuk’ku is the one who conquers the Pool against the resistance of Likimeya and the other Sithi, but it’s a member of the Red Hand who creates the Fifth House just like the others.

Pryrates says:

To Green Angel Tower wrote:

In the Pool of Three Depths, Utuk’ku gives way to the last of the Storm King’s servitors, and beneath us the fifth and final House is created.

Could have been Ommu, though – perhaps that’s how Utuk’ku managed to find her afterwards because they were in close proximity when Ineluki was destroyed.



Great.
First post and it’s a nitpick.

Anyway, hi y'all! I'm so happy there is a sequel to my first big fantasy love - and to have discovered this forum and all the interesting discussions makes reading the new Osten Ard stories all the more precious. I'll admit I signed up several weeks ago and read a lot of what's been written here but only now am I starting to write.

To me, the funny thing about TWC is that I had a certain sequel in mind ever since hearing the prophecy about  the twins in TGAT: I was so sure Derra would fall in love with Jiriki and it’d be with him that she would walk the lands no mortal woman has ever been to. Even when I read the prophecy for the first time 20 years ago, I immediately thought of how they’d be separated, of course, by him being an immortal and she’d have to live among men again but ultimately be happy… that’s how I interpreted Leleth’s word’s. And now Derra actually ended up with an immortal, but the wrong one. I like Viyeki, though, I'm looking forward to finding out where his own prophecy is leading him.

 

#862 2018-01-08 09:49:57

ylvs
Mantis
From: Art Central
Registered: 2001-06-19
Posts: 13414

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Welcome to the boards, Ommu! Congrats for delurking and great first post.
This is nitpicking central when it comes to all stuff Tad, so no worries!
We're always happy for new peeps to chime in ...

 

#863 2018-01-08 11:48:51

Ommu
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-10-20
Posts: 10

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Thank you so much for the warm welcome, ylvs!

I'll continue a little bit with my thoughts and observations.

The Witchwood: if immortality is truly linked to Witchwood, does that mean the Gardenborn will be dying once their groves are no more? They seem pretty composed about the whole thing, don’t they? We know immortality is something that can be acquired since the Tinukeda’ya were actively kept from it. But if Tinukeda’ya were traditionally tending the trees (e.g. at Asu’a), how could they not know how Witchwood can grant immortality?

The City that never was - could it be the city of Tzo that the Heart Of What Was Lost shows? It’s supposed to be located in the Garden close to the Dreaming Sea, but no one safe Utuk’ku could say for sure if it truly existed or if so, if it was anything like it’s presented in collective Norn memory.

Jijibo: Did anyone else notice how he is described as a descendant of Utuk’ku without any mention of Ekimeniso? Did she stray from her marriage at some point?^^

Btw, I also caught the tiny Jiriki-Tanahaya-vibe… So far we’ve never been shown Sithi lovers so we couldn’t say how they’d interact with third parties present. The closest we got so far was Likimeya and Shima’onari holding hands in a combat situation.

My favorite scene of the whole book was Ommu’s resurrection, obviously, but it also raised a question for me: shouldn’t the Norns have witnessed this kind of thing before? Descriptions of what Ommu the Whisperer looks like now and how the Red Hand looked back then are identical, aren’t they? Perhaps they were resurrected outside of Nakkiga and that’s why to most of the Norns present in chapter 10 of TWC, it’s a novel thing? Or is it just Viyeki who’s never witnessed it? Whom would they have picked as vessels last time?
   
And I was really surprised to find out that the Red Hand were Norns. In DBC, one of them states:

The Dragonbone Chair wrote:

"We are the Red Hand!" [...] "We serve no one but Ineluki, the Lord of Storms. [...]"

No one but Ineluki? That’s one hell of a thing to say for a Norn, even for an undead one. So Utuk’ku doesn’t even feature in the equation anymore? It makes me wonder where Ommu the Whisperer’s loyalties truly lie these days and whether she brought an agenda of her own from beyond the veil that not even the Queen knows about.

So the Ineluki-Nakkiga connection is much older than I assumed after reading MST – and it might be older still. It’s been stressed time and again, how unflinching he was in his search for knowledge. I somehow doubt he would have shied from making contact with the cousin clan in the far North. Also, it’s been stated that „in all of Osten Ard“ there was no cure to be found for Hakatri - so they would have spoken to the Nakkiga folks about this as well, right? I mean this is the kind of emergency that call for a break of habits. I mean maybe Amerasu and Iyu’unigato would have been hesitant to ask Utuk’ku if she had an idea, but Ineluki probably would have stopped at nothing. (Heck, if that were my brother suffering, I’d ask Kim Jong-un for an audience if I thought he might have a solution!)

 

#864 2018-01-08 12:22:23

Kenan
Pilgrim
From: Gothenburg, Sweden
Registered: 2005-06-19
Posts: 8986
Website

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Welcome and happy nitpicking, Ommu!
(I think we were all afraid of you starting to post, considering your chosen nickname!)


Wouldn't the plural form of Olaf be Olaves? ;) - Firsfron of Ronchester

 

#865 2018-01-08 14:14:40

Ommu
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-10-20
Posts: 10

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Kenan wrote:

Welcome and happy nitpicking, Ommu!
(I think we were all afraid of you starting to post, considering your chosen nickname!)

Thank you very much, Kenan!
(No worries, I chose the name for completely benign reasons: I'm extremely soft-spoken and I'm always cold. Plus, I've always liked Ineluki ;))

 

#866 2018-01-08 21:48:21

ajl3
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-02-14
Posts: 391

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Ommu wrote:

The Witchwood: if immortality is truly linked to Witchwood, does that mean the Gardenborn will be dying once their groves are no more?

I don't think there's a real link mentioned beyond Utuk'ku's bed being called the Witchwood Kernel, i.e., a seed, because she represents their gifts and heritage, etc., but it's certainly possible and something I wondered about it. Though it could be that they gained it through a ceremony involving Witchwood, but it's not maintained by that; losing the trees would still be big as all of their advanced swords and armor and even their art seems to be built from it - they would have to learn to make due with mortal level tech instead, plus they have a kinship to it because it reminds them of the Garden.

The theory I came up with somewhere in this thread was that Utuk'ku's plan is all three definitions of a Witchwood Crown that Jiriki gives: she's going to use the Witchwood Grove at Nakkiga (mentioned as being, in rumor, moved to the Queen's Palace) to do a ritual, presumably involving dragon's blood, to create an artifact of power (maybe literally a crown that she will wear, like the one for the honored dead) that will destroy her but also destroy everything else (surrender but win).

The City that never was - could it be the city of Tzo that the Heart Of What Was Lost shows? It’s supposed to be located in the Garden close to the Dreaming Sea, but no one safe Utuk’ku could say for sure if it truly existed or if so, if it was anything like it’s presented in collective Norn memory.

"The Dreaming Sea" is a name that continues to fascinate me with how suggestive it is. I don't if it's Tzo, but I think it or Asu'a and what you said about presentation in Norn history is true: Asu'a is repeatedly mentioned as "their" city, which seems like a huge misrepresentation from what we know of actual history. It's their main goal in MST (we have to recall that even in the original trilogy, much of the Norns seem ignorant of what they're actually doing and what Ineluki might do beyond "we're going to win if we do this" - I doubt the majority would want a world of ashes and fire where nothing can live).

Even without actually "seeing" the Garden I can say the Norns perception of it sounds completely out of whack with reality (Utuk'ku "chose" to leave it to save "her children," they can never change or the Garden might not come back - it's propaganda meant to keep them from questioning why they're doing what they're doing, which I thought a great touch - the same with Norn society being heavily competitive and emotions being "weak", it keeps everyone from trusting each other too much and things like crying are stress relievers).

Random thought: "Tzo" reminds me of "Tzoja." No idea if there's a linguistic connection or not.

Jijibo: Did anyone else notice how he is described as a descendant of Utuk’ku without any mention of Ekimeniso? Did she stray from her marriage at some point?^^

Akhenabi is mentioned as Utuk'ku's "consort." Jijibo also apparently hangs out with Akhenabi a lot at his house doing fun experiments.

We did note that Ekimeniso seems curiously downplayed by Norn society. Drukhi has temples, entire major festivals, and an almost Christ-like position in Norn society, but Ekimensio is only mentioned in context of Suno'ku, her sword, and what I think was literally an "Ekimensio Avenue" off the main roads. No mention of him at all in the Queen's chambers, but plenty of Drukhi. Very odd.

Btw, I also caught the tiny Jiriki-Tanahaya-vibe… So far we’ve never been shown Sithi lovers so we couldn’t say how they’d interact with third parties present. The closest we got so far was Likimeya and Shima’onari holding hands in a combat situation.

I didn't get this because we're in Tanahaya's head and she has no thoughts about him in that way, even while in deep fever earlier in the book, assured she will die. Aditu talks to her more in loving terms. Even though we may think they wouldn't show affection like humans do and they might not, their inner thoughts would certainly do so.

And I was really surprised to find out that the Red Hand were Norns. In DBC, one of them states:

No one but Ineluki? That’s one hell of a thing to say for a Norn, even for an undead one. So Utuk’ku doesn’t even feature in the equation anymore? It makes me wonder where Ommu the Whisperer’s loyalties truly lie these days and whether she brought an agenda of her own from beyond the veil that not even the Queen knows about.

That was surprising to me as well and I brought it up somewhere, but it's foreshadowed in MST: we're told help was sent to Asu'a from Nakkiga, but not what or who or how, separately from the story of the Hand. Also, Red Hand=Queen's Hand, five members of both, etc. More surprisingly, Ommu and the twist is mentioned in Heart of What Was Lost, but you don't have the context for it until Witchwood Crown (Suno'ku says during a council meeting that they considered doing breeding with mortals as policy once before, around the time Ommu and "the others" went to Asu'a.)

As for Ommu's loyalties, I've wondered if "Ommu" is indeed Ommu or if she's entirely herself. The presence Viyeki senses that the narrative puts as separate from her is creepy. The tidbit Likimeya gives about the Whisperer being the only one that is speaking the truth but will take the world or something similar also sounds foreboding.

there was no cure to be found for Hakatri - so they would have spoken to the Nakkiga folks about this as well, right?

I'm very curious about how Hakatri ended up on the Island of Bones, if that actually is his bones, and how they could possibly be helpful. It's puzzling in that there's certainly a connection, in that he helped slay a dragon and has stains from the dragon blood, in the short story The Burning Man he's called by Witchwood wood being burned - so there are connections there, but I can't for the life of me say how or why they'd be important to some grand plan.

Last edited by ajl3 (2018-01-08 21:50:26)

 

#867 2018-01-08 23:22:57

Firsfron of Ronchester
Mantis
From: Ronchester
Registered: 2001-06-04
Posts: 23418
Website

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Lots of good stuff here!

Ommu wrote:

The Witchwood: if immortality is truly linked to Witchwood, does that mean the Gardenborn will be dying once their groves are no more?

Welcome, Ommu! Like Kenan said, your very name sends shivers up my spine. I saw you had registered, and wondered if you would ever show yourself, or remain in the shadows, whispering. Glad you have come to us, even in all your awful glory! ;)

ajl3 wrote:

The theory I came up with somewhere in this thread was that Utuk'ku's plan is all three definitions of a Witchwood Crown that Jiriki gives: she's going to use the Witchwood Grove at Nakkiga (mentioned as being, in rumor, moved to the Queen's Palace) to do a ritual, presumably involving dragon's blood, to create an artifact of power (maybe literally a crown that she will wear, like the one for the honored dead) that will destroy her but also destroy everything else (surrender but win).

I think you could be right, ajl3. That strikes me as a very Utuk'kuish plan: "Fools!" she hissed. "Did it not occur to any of you that my plan was all of the above?!"

The City that never was - could it be the city of Tzo that the Heart Of What Was Lost shows? It’s supposed to be located in the Garden close to the Dreaming Sea, but no one safe Utuk’ku could say for sure if it truly existed or if so, if it was anything like it’s presented in collective Norn memory.

But Tzo actually existed, if we are to believe the legends that Yaarike mentions, and the fact that The Heart comes from there. Presumably, Tzo was Unmade when VD was Unmade, but Unmade isn't the same as Never Made, I think.

Random thought: "Tzo" reminds me of "Tzoja." No idea if there's a linguistic connection or not.

This deserves some serious consideration and investigation.

Tzoja means Star, right? And Tzo...?

Akhenabi is mentioned as Utuk'ku's "consort." Jijibo also apparently hangs out with Akhenabi a lot at his house doing fun experiments.

We did note that Ekimeniso seems curiously downplayed by Norn society. Drukhi has temples, entire major festivals, and an almost Christ-like position in Norn society, but Ekimensio is only mentioned in context of Suno'ku, her sword, and what I think was literally an "Ekimensio Avenue" off the main roads. No mention of him at all in the Queen's chambers, but plenty of Drukhi. Very odd.

It is an oddity, but it may be explained by any number of things, including how quiet Ekimeniso appears to be during Simon's Stone of Farewell vision. He's almost conspicuous by his silence by Utuk'ku's side, if indeed (as I have long believed) the spikey-armored man is truly him. We get a very different impression of Drukhi: someone so full of passion that his people had to imprison him from stopping him from going after the human race.


there was no cure to be found for Hakatri - so they would have spoken to the Nakkiga folks about this as well, right?

That's a really interesting theory! And one I can believe.


Scrollbearer, Keeper of the Firsfronicon, Message Board Poet Lariat and Guardian of the Wild Range.
Co-titan of fact-checking and priceless source of Osten-Ard-iana
Now-official Osten Ard consultant for Tad Williams

Ommu is horrifying; Akhenabi is f**king evil; Makho is Trump with a badass sword; Jijibo is the crackhead version of Towser.  And Saomeji is creepy. --Cyan

 

#868 2018-01-09 01:52:59

Ommu
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-10-20
Posts: 10

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

ajl3 wrote:

I don't if it's Tzo, but I think it or Asu'a and what you said about presentation in Norn history is true: Asu'a is repeatedly mentioned as "their" city, which seems like a huge misrepresentation from what we know of actual history.

Right. I don’t believe there were ever Norns inhabiting Asu’a (if we don’t count the Red Hand). For some reason I have in mind that Asu’a was founded only after the parting and that everyone lived in Enki-e-Shaosaye before… but that might be because the latter is located closest to the Stone of Farewell.

It's their main goal in MST (we have to recall that even in the original trilogy, much of the Norns seem ignorant of what they're actually doing and what Ineluki might do beyond "we're going to win if we do this" - I doubt the majority would want a world of ashes and fire where nothing can live).

If that really is what he wanted. Complete destruction of everyone and everything seems more like an Utuk’ku fetish to me.

Even without actually "seeing" the Garden I can say the Norns perception of it sounds completely out of whack with reality (Utuk'ku "chose" to leave it to save "her children,"

This makes me wonder if it wasn’t the other way round: perhaps Utuk’ku had to leave because she was threatened and „sold“ it to everyone else as a sacrifice on her part. I'd really like to know more details about this boarding of the ships and Utuk'ku's role in it. For example, we're told that they were trying to take Hamakho's sword from Tzo were he had left it in the staircase to the Temple of the Gatherer, but no one managed to pull it out. So either Utuk'ku wasn't in Tzo and didn't get to try - or her ancestor didn't consider her worthy and that's why she couldn't take the sword?

I didn't get this because we're in Tanahaya's head and she has no thoughts about him in that way, even while in deep fever earlier in the book, assured she will die. Aditu talks to her more in loving terms. Even though we may think they wouldn't show affection like humans do and they might not, their inner thoughts would certainly do so.

True :/ I cannot really put my finger on it, I just „felt“ there was something there.

As for Ommu's loyalties, I've wondered if "Ommu" is indeed Ommu or if she's entirely herself. The presence Viyeki senses that the narrative puts as separate from her is creepy. The tidbit Likimeya gives about the Whisperer being the only one that is speaking the truth but will take the world or something similar also sounds foreboding.

I’m wondering if the speaking the truth and stealing the world of Likimeya’s „prophecy“ is about the representations of history that Norns and Sithi believe in. If the truth is revealed, it might feel to some of them as if their world came tumbling down. I’m mentioning the Sithi here as well because I find it unlikely that everything they remember should be accepted as the plain truth just because the Norns are so obviously fond of falsification. 

I'm very curious about how Hakatri ended up on the Island of Bones, if that actually is his bones, and how they could possibly be helpful. It's puzzling in that there's certainly a connection, in that he helped slay a dragon and has stains from the dragon blood, in the short story The Burning Man he's called by Witchwood wood being burned - so there are connections there, but I can't for the life of me say how or why they'd be important to some grand plan.

I still hope they’re not actually his bones.

 

#869 2018-01-09 02:00:11

Ommu
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-10-20
Posts: 10

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Firsfron of Ronchester wrote:

Welcome, Ommu! Like Kenan said, your very name sends shivers up my spine. I saw you had registered, and wondered if you would ever show yourself, or remain in the shadows, whispering. Glad you have come to us, even in all your awful glory! ;)

Thank you! I promise to be on my best behavior and keep the whispering to a minimum.

Firsfron of Ronchester wrote:

ajl3 wrote:

The theory I came up with somewhere in this thread was that Utuk'ku's plan is all three definitions of a Witchwood Crown that Jiriki gives: she's going to use the Witchwood Grove at Nakkiga (mentioned as being, in rumor, moved to the Queen's Palace) to do a ritual, presumably involving dragon's blood, to create an artifact of power (maybe literally a crown that she will wear, like the one for the honored dead) that will destroy her but also destroy everything else (surrender but win).

I think you could be right, ajl3. That strikes me as a very Utuk'kuish plan: "Fools!" she hissed. "Did it not occur to any of you that my plan was all of the above?!"

She probably wouldn’t even bother to point it out, just roll her colorless eyes behind that mask :)

The City that never was - could it be the city of Tzo that the Heart Of What Was Lost shows? It’s supposed to be located in the Garden close to the Dreaming Sea, but no one safe Utuk’ku could say for sure if it truly existed or if so, if it was anything like it’s presented in collective Norn memory.

But Tzo actually existed, if we are to believe the legends that Yaarike mentions, and the fact that The Heart comes from there. Presumably, Tzo was Unmade when VD was Unmade, but Unmade isn't the same as Never Made, I think.

But that’s the point: they are just legends. Utuk’ku is the only living person who actually saw the Garden, in the course of time she could have twisted what little was known of the place to serve her own ends… whatever they are. I still don’t fully understand what drives her and something tells me I won't until it's been revealed what really happened in the Garden.

Firsfron of Ronchester wrote:

alj3 wrote:

We did note that Ekimeniso seems curiously downplayed by Norn society. Drukhi has temples, entire major festivals, and an almost Christ-like position in Norn society, but Ekimensio is only mentioned in context of Suno'ku, her sword, and what I think was literally an "Ekimensio Avenue" off the main roads. No mention of him at all in the Queen's chambers, but plenty of Drukhi. Very odd.

It is an oddity, but it may be explained by any number of things, including how quiet Ekimeniso appears to be during Simon's Stone of Farewell vision. He's almost conspicuous by his silence by Utuk'ku's side, if indeed (as I have long believed) the spikey-armored man is truly him. We get a very different impression of Drukhi: someone so full of passion that his people had to imprison him from stopping him from going after the human race.

Why, he’s his mother’s son obviously… just kidding.

There’s a conspicuous comment by Tzoja about Ekimeniso, she says:

The Witchwood Crown wrote:

“[…] Great Ekimeniso promised to keep his people free – what did his promises mean after he was dead?“

Typically, Viyeki immediately shuts her up, but it’s a great hint that Utuk’ku and her husband weren’t always of one mind. What would „keep them free“ mean in the context of Norn society? Also, it’s not free them but keep them free. So Utuk’ku wanted to consolidate her power in ways he wasn’t pleased with? The Norns enjoyed more freedom in earlier times than they do now?

… How did Ekimeniso die again?^^

 

#870 2018-01-09 07:32:21

ajl3
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-02-14
Posts: 391

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

This makes me wonder if it wasn’t the other way round: perhaps Utuk’ku had to leave because she was threatened and „sold“ it to everyone else as a sacrifice on her part. I'd really like to know more details about this boarding of the ships and Utuk'ku's role in it. For example, we're told that they were trying to take Hamakho's sword from Tzo were he had left it in the staircase to the Temple of the Gatherer, but no one managed to pull it out. So either Utuk'ku wasn't in Tzo and didn't get to try - or her ancestor didn't consider her worthy and that's why she couldn't take the sword?

Either way, I wouldn't be surprised if Utuk'ku had her hand in releasing what devoured the Garden, perhaps by mistake. I wonder if we will hear more about that sword - Cold Root is strangely prominent in both Heart and Witchwood and I can't figure out yet if it's a piece of the puzzle or just a detailed bit of world building. Unfortunately, the chances to see Hamakho's sword pulled from the stone are almost none.

I’m wondering if the speaking the truth and stealing the world of Likimeya’s „prophecy“ is about the representations of history that Norns and Sithi believe in. If the truth is revealed, it might feel to some of them as if their world came tumbling down. I’m mentioning the Sithi here as well because I find it unlikely that everything they remember should be accepted as the plain truth just because the Norns are so obviously fond of falsification.

This being a MST sequel, I feel like one of the prophecies (at least) will have double meaning or word play. In Heart, Ayaminu rebukes the common Sithi belief that men broke up the races - or that even Drukhi's death did it, saying it began long ago, in the Garden and that the parting was only a matter of when, not if. I think she calls it an excuse, so I wouldn't be surprised if the Sithi have other perspective flaws.

 

#871 2018-01-09 07:46:40

ajl3
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-02-14
Posts: 391

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

There’s a conspicuous comment by Tzoja about Ekimeniso, she says:

The Witchwood Crown wrote:

“[…] Great Ekimeniso promised to keep his people free – what did his promises mean after he was dead?“

Typically, Viyeki immediately shuts her up, but it’s a great hint that Utuk’ku and her husband weren’t always of one mind. What would „keep them free“ mean in the context of Norn society? Also, it’s not free them but keep them free. So Utuk’ku wanted to consolidate her power in ways he wasn’t pleased with? The Norns enjoyed more freedom in earlier times than they do now?

… How did Ekimeniso die again?^^

All I recall is that Ekimeniso died in a battle with the Hern, not why or how. It always sounded very suspicious to me - the whole deal with the Sithi woman Drukhi loved dying, Drukhi "deciding to die" (but only once no one was around), Ekimeniso dying and leaving Utuk'ku with sole power, etc.

I agree that the line hints that all was not well between the spouses and that he only went north to try and keep Utuk'ku from going too far. Speaking of going north...I hope we get more detail on who or what they kicked out of Nakkiga when Utuk'ku had to get herself invited in due to the gates being so strong (tidbit from Heart when the gates are first described.)

 

#872 2018-01-09 07:48:56

Firsfron of Ronchester
Mantis
From: Ronchester
Registered: 2001-06-04
Posts: 23418
Website

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Ommu wrote:

Right. I don’t believe there were ever Norns inhabiting Asu’a (if we don’t count the Red Hand). For some reason I have in mind that Asu’a was founded only after the parting and that everyone lived in Enki-e-Shaosaye before… but that might be because the latter is located closest to the Stone of Farewell.

I don't think that's right: we're told that Asu'a is the oldest of the Nine Cities. This means it couldn't have been founded after the Parting, as they would have had no cities to live in before parting ways.

Also, the passage in The Burning Man indicates that Norns did live in Asu'a: why else are there doors marked with nightingales and snakes? If the nightingales represent Jenjiyana's clan, don't the snakes likely represent the Hamakha/Wormslayer clan?

I'd really like to know more details about this boarding of the ships and Utuk'ku's role in it. For example, we're told that they were trying to take Hamakho's sword from Tzo were he had left it in the staircase to the Temple of the Gatherer, but no one managed to pull it out. So either Utuk'ku wasn't in Tzo and didn't get to try - or her ancestor didn't consider her worthy and that's why she couldn't take the sword?

There's definitely shades of Excalibur to this story.

But if Tzo is a legend concocted by Utuk'ku, why does the sword story exist? It doesn't paint Utuk'ku in a flattering light.

I still hope they’re not actually his bones.

Same here. But then... whose bones could they be?


Scrollbearer, Keeper of the Firsfronicon, Message Board Poet Lariat and Guardian of the Wild Range.
Co-titan of fact-checking and priceless source of Osten-Ard-iana
Now-official Osten Ard consultant for Tad Williams

Ommu is horrifying; Akhenabi is f**king evil; Makho is Trump with a badass sword; Jijibo is the crackhead version of Towser.  And Saomeji is creepy. --Cyan

 

#873 2018-01-09 10:04:39

Ommu
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-10-20
Posts: 10

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

ajl3 wrote:

Either way, I wouldn't be surprised if Utuk'ku had her hand in releasing what devoured the Garden, perhaps by mistake.

Either that or her power struggles got her in trouble. I can picture Utuk’ku as a minor member of clan Hamakha who craved power so she became the leader of a rebellion against whomever was in charge at the time. Nowadays she’s obsessed with treason which makes complete sense if she herself started out as a traitor.

This being a MST sequel, I feel like one of the prophecies (at least) will have double meaning or word play. In Heart, Ayaminu rebukes the common Sithi belief that men broke up the races - or that even Drukhi's death did it, saying it began long ago, in the Garden and that the parting was only a matter of when, not if. I think she calls it an excuse, so I wouldn't be surprised if the Sithi have other perspective flaws.

Judging by everything that came to pass later, it’s surprising that they were every allies. Perhaps the only reason why Utuk’ku brought the Sithi along was that Drukhi was married to one of them. And wouldn’t that have made for a killer argument whenever Jenjiyana or whoever expressed dissatisfaction with her rule and/or attitude? („Without me, we’d all have been killed, so shut it!“)

 

#874 2018-01-09 10:05:50

Ommu
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-10-20
Posts: 10

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

ajl3 wrote:

All I recall is that Ekimeniso died in a battle with the Hern, not why or how. It always sounded very suspicious to me - the whole deal with the Sithi woman Drukhi loved dying, Drukhi "deciding to die" (but only once no one was around), Ekimeniso dying and leaving Utuk'ku with sole power, etc.

There goes my pet theory that Utuk’ku first wore the silver mask after Drukhi’s death because she didn’t want her enemies to see that she’d been crying… Yes, the true story might turn out much more sinister than the romantic legend of Drukhi and Nenais’u. On the other hand, if assassination was Utuk’ku’s political tool of choice back then, wouldn’t Jenjiyana haven been number one on her hitlist? In SOF, Jiriki entertains the thought whether she hadn’t been plotting Amerasu’s death since the Parting.
And come to think of it, Hamakho also didn’t die a natural death either – he was shot by arrows and drove his sword into the staircase when he was dying. Perhaps because he didn’t want it to fall into the hands of his murderess?

Speaking of going north...I hope we get more detail on who or what they kicked out of Nakkiga when Utuk'ku had to get herself invited in due to the gates being so strong (tidbit from Heart when the gates are first described.)

Dito. I’m looking forward to Tzoja wandering the depths of the mountain and hopefully finding out some more about who or what is abiding there. 
Morgenes also mentions, there might have been a castle where Asu’a was built later. I hope we’re being told if that’s true as well.

 

#875 2018-01-09 10:06:17

Ommu
Pilgrim
Registered: 2017-10-20
Posts: 10

Re: FINALLY - The Witchwood Crown discussion thread is here

Firsfron of Ronchester wrote:

I don't think that's right: we're told that Asu'a is the oldest of the Nine Cities. This means it couldn't have been founded after the Parting, as they would have had no cities to live in before parting ways.

Oops, my bad.

Also, the passage in The Burning Man indicates that Norns did live in Asu'a: why else are there doors marked with nightingales and snakes? If the nightingales represent Jenjiyana's clan, don't the snakes likely represent the Hamakha/Wormslayer clan?

Agreed, the snake is most likely a symbol of the Hamakha clan, but how does this prove the Norns added it? The Sa’onserei family are descended from both clans and seem to be very conscious of their history. The two doors facing each other like this – it could be a memento of Nenais’u and Drukhi.

But if Tzo is a legend concocted by Utuk'ku, why does the sword story exist? It doesn't paint Utuk'ku in a flattering light.

No, it doesn’t. But we haven’t heard the tale from her POV yet. Perhaps she always claimed she just didn’t get there in time. However, in that case, why did she leave the jewel from the sword’s pommel to Yaarike’s ancestor?

I still hope they’re not actually his bones.

Same here. But then... whose bones could they be?

Unfortunately, I have no idea. I’m just hoping Tad thought of something and that we get to see Hakatri very much alive.

 
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