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This week we read the prologue through to the end of Chapter 20.
1) What do you make of Nynaeve's initial training with Verin? Is she being too stubborn? Do you think the Aes Sedai are messing with her a little?
To quote that great reservoir of wisdom, Mister T, “I pity the fool that messes with Nynaeve!” :D
It is difficult to judge the training that we are seeing because we do not know what is normal, but I suspect that the Aes Sedai are fairly experienced in dealing with Wilders like Nynaeve. As they are trained by a different sister every night I have to assume that they are given the same treatment as other new Novices. I can understand why Nynaeve presents much more of a problem than Egwene, because she has already learnt subconscious methods to control her channeling and they need to help her break through those barriers. It seemed like Verin was both amused and impressed by Nynaeve’s power, and possibly a little surprised at how quickly she could learn to reproduce what she saw.
“Is she being too stubborn?” That is like asking if a tree is too woody . . . Nynaeve is always too stubborn, but I imagine that makes her relentless in her pursuit of perfection and once she decides to be the greatest living Aes Sedai nothing will stop her becoming just that.
2) Ooops! Is Rand channeling even in his sleep? Or do you think some other power pulled him, Loial, & Hurin into that alternate plane of existence?
He always seems to channel in response to a desperate need, so it makes sense that it could be triggered by an intense dream. However, he does not seem to have had that type of dream on that night . . . I have a sneaky suspicion that they were transported by ‘Selene’ so that she could have a chance to manipulate Rand and attempt to get the Horn. We know that a woman in white has been seen in the deserted villages . . . and then up she pops . . . it is far too much of a coincidence.
3) Perrin is taking a calculated risk in sharing part of his wolfish gift with Ingtar. How do you think that will turn out?
I think that of all the peoples that they have encountered so far the Shienarans are the most likely to accept such strangeness. After all, they accept Hurin and make use of his unexplained powers, even trying to protect his secret from the Aes Sedai. This suggests that they will tolerate any special talent that they can use against the Dark One, just as long as they see no darkness in it. I also suspect that they are more likely than most to retain stories of the Old Powers that used to aid in the fight, so Ingtar might have heard of men like Perrin before.
4) Who and what do you think Selene is and from where does she draw her power? What is her hunger for the Horn? If you already know, feel free to critique her choice in clothing.
I am almost totally sure that she is Lanfear, one of the Forsaken.
She can obviously channel, which is how she travelled to this other dimension in the first place. Although she is happy to use her charms on Loial and Hurin, she is most definitely targeting Rand with her womanly attributes. It is very unfortunate that he is so naive and hormone-driven that he cannot see how suspicious her actions are:
1. She is the only living person they encounter
2. She knows far too much about everything
3. She happens to know where another Portal Stone is
4. She is far too calm in the face of a grolm attack
5. When Rand does not agree to her plan increasing numbers of grolm arrive
6. She is obviously obsessed with power and sees the Horn as a way to get it
7. She seems to have known Rand in one of his other incarnations (Lanfear was said to have been associated with Lews Therin Telamon)
Or I could just hate and distrust her because she is pretty and not ashamed to take her clothes off to make a man’s brain turn to mush! :D
5) Hehe! What was your favorite part of the first meeting between the Amyrlin and Nynaeve & Egwene?
I love the way that Siuan is so normal. She has no pretentions and no arrogance about her position or even her ability with the One Power. I find it funny that she comes from a very humble background and so she is not at all what the girls expect the Amyrlin to be.
6) Wow! I did not expect Rand to go for the Horn and Mat's dagger. What do you think finally pushed him over into doing so?
I would like to think that he finally realized that Selene is someone that he should get rid of and so decided to take that final step. However, I think it is most likely that her constant manipulation of his emotions made it almost impossible for him to chose any other course of action.
Rand, Selene is really bad news: run away! :(