View Full Version : Birgitte and the turning of the Wheel.

05-28-2012, 07:06 AM
I cannot find the exact quote but RJ/BS said there is only *one* thing different in this turning of the wheel ... and that is the uniqueness of Padan Fain.

I have been re-reading the entire series recently and I'm up to TSR / TFOH and something struck me as odd:

1. Moggy's "hint" she would be the one to rip out Brigitte; long before she actually did it.

“When the Horn calls us, we will fight. When the Wheel weaves us, we will fight. Not until then!” He glowered at her. “Have you forgotten what Moghedien promised you when we followed Lews Therin? I saw her, Birgitte. She will know you here.”

“She knew what I was, even though I did not. How, I do not know.” Birgitte glanced at Cain; he appeared absorbed in his sword, but she lowered her voice anyway. “She promised to make me weep alone for as long as the Wheel turns. She said it as a fact that simply had not happened yet.”

In TFOH we see that Birgitte can remember her old lives the further back the less she remembers but she remembers many many lives.

Even knowing I can do almost nothing, I find myself wanting to help you. But I cannot. It violates the precepts, precepts which have held me for so many turns of the Wheel that in my oldest, faintest memories I know I had already lived a hundred times, or a thousand. Speaking to you violates precepts as strong as law.”

Obviously we do not know how many times she is reborn in an age... she mentions it has "been a long time" since she was in the flesh but even if it is modest 10 times per age that is only 70 times for each full turn of the wheel of time. but she mentions hundreds... perhaps thousands it stands to reason she remembers lifetimes from previous turnings of the wheel, i.e. the last 3rd age.

Now Moggy's cmment references that she is broken out of the wheel and re-added again; but surely she would remember breaking the precepts the last time around and more importantly the price. More importantly she would remember only one turning of the wheel (back to the previous 3rd age).

We have the same paragraph at the start of each book:

The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass, leaving memories that become legend. Legend fades to myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth comes again. In one Age, called the Third Age by some, an Age yet to come, an Age long past, a wind rose in the great forest called Braem Wood. The wind was not the beginning. There are neither beginnings nor endings to the turning of the Wheel of Time. But it was a beginning.

Does this mean that the memeories of heroes of the horn also fade and are forgotten when the wheel turns to the same place again? From what Birgitte mentions each life is similar... but not the same she knows some parts which are the same but also cites many differences showing that at the least she sees the pattern of the ages more closely than most but she REMEMBERS.

Surely for such an important event of her being ripped out woudl have stuck in her mind reguardless of the time betwene the event.

So.... on the one hand we have a "prophecy" and a hint that moggy knew she would be the one to rip birgitte out showing that this even was always part of the turning of the wheel; which suggests it has happened before. But you also have the suggestion that Birgitte remembers hundreds of lives but not this event; so perhaps this has never happened before.

In a similar vein now that Hopper is dead dead dead never to be reborn with the next turning will there be a new "Hopper"; the old Hopper reborn (somehow) or will Perin never have his guide in TAR and thus fail in the next turning?

Since the DO knows all the turns of the wheel in destroying those in TAR (either by the final death and ripping specfic heroes from the wheel), on the next turning there would-be allies never existed and thus allow a victory for the shadow?

Or does the wheel account for this and weave Birgitte and Hopper back somehow altering their memories so they never knew they would be ripped out?

Any thoughts/ideas?

05-28-2012, 07:19 AM
With the Turnings of the Wheel, there are differences of various sizes.
There are minor differences: what color shoe lace Mat is wearing on the day that Elayne is crowned could be one. This would probably be random, with no significance at all, between various Turnings.
There are medium differences: which specific Cairhienin lord betrays which other lord. This would have some temporary effects on that part of Randland, but no more.
There are big differences: whether or not Birgitte is ripped out. This changes a lot of details all across the world, but not the overall dynamic.
And then there are truly exceptional differences: Padan Fain is such a one in this Turning. That would have a big effect, or rather, big effects. For instance, it could influence how Rand removes the Taint, consequently, when he does it, and, as a result, how far the madness in lots of Ashaman (including Rand, maybe) progresses. It would influence Perrin if his family isn't eaten. It would influence the White Tower, if Elaida isn't infected with distrust of the DR. And so forth.

But not even the last category is enough to really distinguish this Turning from another one, if viewed from, seven thousand Turnings away.

05-28-2012, 07:38 AM
But my issue is whilst there are differences... the basic path lives of each person takes is *bascially* the same. Even Birgitte comments on it.

Birgitte laughed suddenly. “I begin to talk as if I were a philosopher. In almost every life I can remember I was born a simple girl who took up the bow. I am an archer, no more.”

Sometimes she becomes famous and gets promoted to a general or something similar other times she dies in obscurity.

... but being ripped out and breaking the cycle of being reborn again and again IS a huge change for HER.

My big question has got to be: why doesn't she remember it?... surely if this happened regually either with each turning of the wheel or irregually. The only hint is the precepts she "sort of remembers" from hundreds of lifetimes ago which could be a memory of it occuring previously.

I have no idea what is going to happen to her... RJ and BS have been vague over her and the horn for a while but this seems to be a logic hole in my head right now.

If Birgitte stuck to the precepts there is too much which would have failed... nyneave would certainly have not been able to heal madness/stilling/taint/possibly rand.

Elayne would have died most likely; al important characters to the Dragon... without them he woudl never win; Birgitte *had* to break the precepts and be torn out... but she does not remember....

05-28-2012, 09:09 AM
Fun, isn't it?
And if you think that's bad, just remember that the DO will have a far better memory than any mere human, even a HotH. So he is basing his actions and orders not only on what he can learn is happening now or has just happened, but also on what happened during thousands, maybe millions, previous Turnings too.

05-28-2012, 09:48 AM
I cannot find the exact quote but RJ/BS said there is only *one* thing different in this turning of the wheel ... and that is the uniqueness of Padan Fain.

Not the ONE thing though...

Here ya go: Dec 9th, 2002
Wotmania and Dragonmount Q&A
Has the Padan Fain/Mordeth character been present in previous Ages, or is he unique to this particular Age?

He is unique to this particular Age. A very unique fellow, indeed. In some ways, you might say he has unwittingly side-stepped the Pattern.

fain, mordeth, pattern,

Lost One
12-15-2012, 06:13 PM
“She knew what I was, even though I did not. How, I do not know.” Birgitte glanced at Cain; he appeared absorbed in his sword, but she lowered her voice anyway. “She promised to make me weep alone for as long as the Wheel turns. She said it as a fact that simply had not happened yet.”

However, all it says is that Moghedien made a horrific threat to Birgette/whoever she was at the time. It does not say what that threat was. There is nothing to say that she was ripped away from the Horn before. There are only two things that can be drawn from this quote.
(1) This was during the War of the Power at the end of the 2nd Age, because the name of the threat-giver is Moghedien specifically, and not any other reincarnate name that we would not recognise... and there is the little fact that M. has not died since then so she could not have been re-spun. But it sets the time of when the threat was made.
(2) A horrific threat was made.
These are the only things that are given. Remember, these are forsaken. They are not pleasant people. By being able to channel, they have a much greater ability to carry out thier threats, and they have done things so horrible that normal villians seem pretty tame. I would put the Forsaken up there as a group of Hitlers, Saddam Husseins, Pol Pots, and Vlad the Impalers.. who can channel.

"Whatever your crimes are Taim, they pale beside the Forsaken's. HAve you ever tortured and entire city, made thousands of people assist in breaking others slowly, in breaking their loved one's. Semirhage did that for no other reason than that she could, to prove she could, for the pleasure of it. Have you murdered children? Graendal did. She called it kindness, so they would not suffer after she enslaved their parents and carried them away." ..... Have you ever given people to the Trollocs to eat? All of the Forsaken did_ prisoners who would not turn always went tot he trollocs, if the weren't murdered out of hand- but Demandred captured two cities just because he thought the people slighted him before he went over to the Sadow and every man, woman, and child went to the trollocs cook pots".. LoC, chapt 2, pg 77.
Any threat a forsaken made was pretty horrific, and as far as saying it calmly as if it had not happened.. well they are so twisted, that they do not have to make threats in anger. A calmly delivered threat has more of an impact. Who knows what the threat was.