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Tollingtoy
02-12-2013, 09:03 AM
Interview: Nov 15th, 2009
TGS Signing Report - Freelancer (Paraphrased)
Question
Mr. Jordan stated that the Seanchan only know how to make one kind of ter'angreal. Then there are the Bloodknives' rings. Is this a departure from Jordan's notes, or a discrepancy in a past answer?
Brandon Sanderson
Neither. The Seanchan only know how to make a'dam.


I found this tidbit while reading about the a'dam. Any idea where the Bloodknife rings come from?

GonzoTheGreat
02-12-2013, 09:34 AM
I found this tidbit while reading about the a'dam. Any idea where the Bloodknife rings come from?
They are probably left overs from the Age of Legends. Eventually, when all of them are lost, the Empress will run out of the things. So I suspect she would like to recover the ones that Gawyn had "borrowed".

Weird Harold
02-12-2013, 10:28 AM
They are probably left overs from the Age of Legends. Eventually, when all of them are lost, the Empress will run out of the things. So I suspect she would like to recover the ones that Gawyn had "borrowed".
Demandred didn't know of the rings. He thought they were a weave placed directly on Gawyn:

“So,” Demandred said, “an assassin. And Lews Therin always spoke of the ‘honor’ of facing a man face-to-face.”
“I wasn’t sent by the Dragon Reborn.”

“With Night’s Shade surrounding you, a weave that none from this Age remember? Do you know that what Lews Therin has done to you will leak your life away? You are dead, little man.”

“Then you can join me in the grave,” Gawyn said.

That would suggest that the rings were made after the Strike On Shayol Ghul, probably by a "rogue" Seanchan Aes Sedai shortly after the breaking.

Terez
02-12-2013, 10:55 AM
The institution of the Aes Sedai survived in some for or another until Luthair's time on Seanchan; no doubt they invented the Bloodrings, and then lost the ability to make them. Politics were a bit crazed in Seanchan before Luthair, and assassinations were common. This is something the modern-day Seanchan apparently adopted and adapted, in a quaint sort of way. (Traditional assassination attempts.)

fdsaf3
02-13-2013, 12:21 PM
Demandred didn't know of the rings. He thought they were a weave placed directly on Gawyn:

That would suggest that the rings were made after the Strike On Shayol Ghul, probably by a "rogue" Seanchan Aes Sedai shortly after the breaking.

Have we heard of any other weave which, once implemented, has a perpetual effect? Is this something which someone like Nynaeve could Heal? We've seen temporary weaves to alter physical appearance and whatnot, but I can't think of anything that gets applied once and is in effect forever. We've seen weaves that get tied off and stay that way, but those can be untied if the weave isn't terribly complex and the channeler is sufficiently skilled (and patient).

As far as I know, this is the only weave which permanently changes physical characteristics of a person and can't be undone. At first blush, it seems weird that Demandred would say that. Or am I way off base here?

Edit:

Also, the way I read Demandred's statement, it can be concluded that the Night's Shade effect has been put on Gawyn but he doesn't necessarily know the source (i.e. the ring ter'angreal). All Demandred is saying is that A) the effect is there, B) no one from this Age knows the weave to create the effect, and C) it's going to kill him. There's nothing there about how it got there.

Weird Harold
02-13-2013, 01:01 PM
Have we heard of any other weave which, once implemented, has a perpetual effect?

Healing?

I'm not sure how a weave as opposed to the rings -- which can be removed to extend the debilitating effects -- would work. Since the weave/ring is basically intended for a suicide mission, I imagine there isn't a lot of thought given to removing the weave.

Tollingtoy
02-13-2013, 05:25 PM
Healing?

I'm not sure how a weave as opposed to the rings -- which can be removed to extend the debilitating effects -- would work. Since the weave/ring is basically intended for a suicide mission, I imagine there isn't a lot of thought given to removing the weave.

Are the Bloodrings a use once and done type thing or can they be reused by another person?
Once a person's blood activates it, is that the only person that can feel the effects until they are dead? At this point, can another person use the ring?

Dom
02-13-2013, 08:06 PM
There's nothing there about how it got there.

No details, but it's obvious from the context that Demandred thinks only Rand could have placed it on Gawyn.

Also from context it's clear Demandred is thinking of a weave. Gawyn had no less than three ter'angreal on his hand.

My guess is the ter'anngreal were created and used by Seanchan's Armies of the Night. I don't think the Seanchan found a stash, I think they collected those from the assassins sent against Luthair and the early emperors.

It's not the best thought out addition, though. You'd think the Forsaken would have used that weave now and again to place on their assassins. They wouldn't shy from killing a pawn.

You'd also think that if the Empress had a weapon like this, to be used highly exceptionally, mid ranking people like Egeanin would never have recognized one, nor would probably know anything about them. Obviously if knowledge of the way they work is so widespread, you'd think the Empress would realize that, if by any chance, one of the assassins was caught, there's a high chance the ring would be seized by the target and used against her. Stuff like this would have been kept very secret.

The other hole is that the Seanchan have damane with the talent to reproduce ter'angreal. It doesn't make that much sense they can copy the a'dam but not those rings. They had no problem copying the bracelets and collar and adapt them into a male a'dam.

The other weirdness is that with the rings so dangerous, it's highly unlikely Radhanan would have given a bunch to the woman who would inherit the Crystal Throne if she died... Supposedly those rings were to be exclusively bestowed at the exclusive decision of the Empress, but somehow the Daughter of the Nine Moons had some and the authority to use them.

It's admittedly nitpicky, but it suggests they're Brandon's invention (aside from the whole lot of not very RJ-like Gawyn scenes required solely to get him to learn what they were. The idea the Seanchan left elite assassins trained to kill damane behind in the WT might well have been RJ's intent, but the rings are... dubious.

Weird Harold
02-13-2013, 10:27 PM
Are the Bloodrings a use once and done type thing or can they be reused by another person?

Duh!

The three Gawyn used came from assassins he killed; he'd have looked pretty silly if they couldn't be reused. :D

GonzoTheGreat
02-14-2013, 04:21 AM
Have we heard of any other weave which, once implemented, has a perpetual effect? Is this something which someone like Nynaeve could Heal? We've seen temporary weaves to alter physical appearance and whatnot, but I can't think of anything that gets applied once and is in effect forever. We've seen weaves that get tied off and stay that way, but those can be untied if the weave isn't terribly complex and the channeler is sufficiently skilled (and patient).
Well, there's the 13x13 trick, which fits your requirements quite well.
So does balefire, for that matter. :p
Maybe the finding trick that Moiraine used with the coins she gave to the ta'veren in TEOTW also falls in this category. We don't know how long it would have kept working, as the link was broken in each case through another mechanism then natural decay of the weave.

And, of course, it is possible that what had happened to Gaywn could actually have been Healed, but no one tried because they didn't know it might be needed.

It's not the best thought out addition, though. You'd think the Forsaken would have used that weave now and again to place on their assassins. They wouldn't shy from killing a pawn.
Well, true. Then again, would it have made a difference if those Aiel who tried to kill Mat in LOC had had this extra advantage?

Duh!

The three Gawyn used came from assassins he killed; he'd have looked pretty silly if they couldn't be reused. :D
That is a good alternative explanation: he's exceedingly good in looking pretty silly, he may have fooled Demandred with it.

fdsaf3
02-14-2013, 12:01 PM
Well, there's the 13x13 trick, which fits your requirements quite well.
So does balefire, for that matter. :p
Maybe the finding trick that Moiraine used with the coins she gave to the ta'veren in TEOTW also falls in this category. We don't know how long it would have kept working, as the link was broken in each case through another mechanism then natural decay of the weave.

And, of course, it is possible that what had happened to Gaywn could actually have been Healed, but no one tried because they didn't know it might be needed.


My apologies if my quesiton wasn't clear. I disregarded Healing and Balefire as fitting the criteria because I thought of them as one-time weaves with permanent implications. Night's Shade is a weave with an affect (blurry, improved fighting ability) with a continuous effect. It's like the rings permanently *and continuously* change the physical characteristics of the person wearing the ring. To my mind, that's a rather unique attribue to the weave. Maybe it's a false distinction and I'm way off base, but I don't know. It just seems rather unique. To my mind, a comparable weave would be something like plastic surgery using the One Power: someone could permanently change their physical appearance. Then again, maybe there's something unique about the ring's effect that prevents channelers from doing something like that. Maybe we'll never know.

I just thought it was worth asking.

Well, there's the 13x13 trick, which fits your requirements quite well.

Oh, and the reason I didn't include this is because I thought the connection Fades have with the Dark One threw off the analysis. It's not really an effect of a One Power weave in and of itself. Again, maybe splitting hairs. But this is what good Theorylanders do, am I right? :p

Also, I learned today that I use the phrase "to my mind" a lot when I'm tired and can't think straight. To my mind, it's probably an annoying habit for you all to deal with.

Edit part dos:


It's not the best thought out addition, though. You'd think the Forsaken would have used that weave now and again to place on their assassins. They wouldn't shy from killing a pawn.

I missed this when I first read your response. Maybe the Forsaken just didn't have the time or necessary Seed to make a ter'angreal for that purpose? I assume that the ring ter'angreal is necessary to give the full effect of the Night's Shade weave, otherwise there's no reason (as you said) a Forsaken wouldn't have used it sooner.

Tollingtoy
02-14-2013, 04:30 PM
Duh!

The three Gawyn used came from assassins he killed; he'd have looked pretty silly if they couldn't be reused. :D

What I'm getting at is, if the ring places a weave on you, how does it know that you are dead so that someone else can use it? Could 10 people all have the ring take their blood and gain the benefits of the ring?

Weird Harold
02-14-2013, 05:30 PM
What I'm getting at is, if the ring places a weave on you, how does it know that you are dead so that someone else can use it? Could 10 people all have the ring take their blood and gain the benefits of the ring?

Judging from the debilitating effect of the rings toward the end of their effectiveness, they feed on the wearer's vitality. Once there is no more vitality to draw on, the ring resets to allow another user's blood to activate it.

It would be difficult for ten or so -- or more than one person -- to wear the same ring at the same time. I suppose it is remotely possible that the rings would allow assassins to work in shifts, with two or three assassins activating the same ring, but that seems like something that would be prevented by operational details. Assigning more than one assassin to share a ring seems to me to be a waste of resources; beyond the waste of using the rings in the first place, that is.

(ETA: The benefits aren't felt unless the ring is worn.)

Tollingtoy
02-16-2013, 09:29 AM
Judging from the debilitating effect of the rings toward the end of their effectiveness, they feed on the wearer's vitality. Once there is no more vitality to draw on, the ring resets to allow another user's blood to activate it.

It would be difficult for ten or so -- or more than one person -- to wear the same ring at the same time. I suppose it is remotely possible that the rings would allow assassins to work in shifts, with two or three assassins activating the same ring, but that seems like something that would be prevented by operational details. Assigning more than one assassin to share a ring seems to me to be a waste of resources; beyond the waste of using the rings in the first place, that is.

(ETA: The benefits aren't felt unless the ring is worn.)


So the wearer needs to keep the ring on until he/she dies to feel the effects and then another person needs to find the body and take the ring from them? If the rings are such a valuable commodity (b/c they can't make more) that seems to have the potential to lose a lot of rings!

Weird Harold
02-16-2013, 10:05 AM
So the wearer needs to keep the ring on until he/she dies to feel the effects and then another person needs to find the body and take the ring from them? If the rings are such a valuable commodity (b/c they can't make more) that seems to have the potential to lose a lot of rings!
Yep, it does seem that a lot of rings would be lost or wind up in the hands of enemies.

I would surmise that a non-assassin (aka thief) would be assigned to recover rings after the bearer dies and that the rings are used very sparingly. Sending three(?) blood-ring assassins against the Amyrlin/White Tower seems like an exceedingly exceptional use of the rings.

GonzoTheGreat
02-16-2013, 10:47 AM
Sending three(?) blood-ring assassins against the Amyrlin/White Tower seems like an exceedingly exceptional use of the rings.
That may be why five were sent. Gareth Bryne had killed one while rescuing Egwene, and another one was found and dispatched after Gawyn went party crashing.

Weird Harold
02-16-2013, 11:12 AM
That may be why five were sent. Gareth Bryne had killed one while rescuing Egwene, and another one was found and dispatched after Gawyn went party crashing.
Five is more exceptional than three. :D I couldn 't remember how many were sent, just that Gawyn was wearing three when he died.

GonzoTheGreat
02-16-2013, 11:23 AM
Five is more exceptional than three. :D
Actually, three is the number to use:
Three shalt be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shalt be three. Four shalt thou not count, neither count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, ... towards thou foe, who, being naughty in My sight, shall snuff it.
It is probably because there weren't three Bloodknives that they failed to let The Enemy snuff it.

Dom
02-16-2013, 01:13 PM
I missed this when I first read your response. Maybe the Forsaken just didn't have the time or necessary Seed to make a ter'angreal for that purpose? I assume that the ring ter'angreal is necessary to give the full effect of the Night's Shade weave, otherwise there's no reason (as you said) a Forsaken wouldn't have used it sooner.

I rather meant Demandred spoke of it as if it was simply a weave LTT would have had the knowledge to place on Gawyn. The ter'angreal probably just reproduce the same effects as the weave, and has the same attached price.

About Seeds, Rand pretty much implied the need for a Seed is part of what differentiates the making of an angreal from that of ter'angreal.

We could ask at a Q&A. There's much to suggest that's all his creation and he probably knows all the details.

mogi67
02-19-2013, 12:47 PM
I think it's more likely that the Seanchean found a cache of the bloodknife rings somewhere along the way. Perhaps they were manufactured and not used, which would make sense if it was on the tail-end of the War of Power.

There are certainly hundreds of different kinds of ter'angreal - I'm sure that none of the forsaken were aware of every kind ever made. Rand didn't seem to know what the dull dagger was at first.

It seems more likely that somebody stumbled upon the rings than the seanchan being able to create them. Although it's certainly possible that Brandon screwed up and went against RJ's insistence that they only produce a'dam

SauceyBlueConfetti
02-19-2013, 03:21 PM
They actually do seem more a creation of Darkfriends than anything else...so I would wonder if assasins were sent against a historical Empress (or Hawking, who knows?), discovered, and the rings were analyzed and kept for use.

Dom
02-20-2013, 08:32 AM
I think it's more likely that the Seanchean found a cache of the bloodknife rings somewhere along the way. Perhaps they were manufactured and not used, which would make sense if it was on the tail-end of the War of Power.

There are certainly hundreds of different kinds of ter'angreal - I'm sure that none of the forsaken were aware of every kind ever made. Rand didn't seem to know what the dull dagger was at first.

It seems more likely that somebody stumbled upon the rings than the seanchan being able to create them. Although it's certainly possible that Brandon screwed up and went against RJ's insistence that they only produce a'dam

It's already established the Seanchan can't reproduce them. Brandon said that the fact RJ said the damane only make a'dam isn't contradicted by the bloodknife rings.