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Old 09-09-2011, 01:19 PM
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Default TGH: Lanfear and Rand

There some interesting things I've found when rereading TGH regarding Selene/Lanfear and her interactions with Rand. Some of this I know has been discussed before, but since this is a reread and Lanfear/Cyndane is still a player, I'll open it up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Great Hunt:31 - "On the Scent"
Transferring things from his old coat to his new, he found the parchments. Absently, he stuffed the invitations in his pocket as he studied Selene's two letters. He wondered how he could have been such a fool. She was the beautiful young daughter of a noble House. He was a shepherd whom Aes Sedai were trying to use, a man doomed to go mad if he did not die first. Yet he could still feel the pull of her just looking at her writing, could almost smell the perfume of her.

"I am a shepherd," he told the letters, "not a great man, and if I could marry anyone, it would be Egwene, but she wants to be Aes Sedai, and how can I marry any woman, love any woman, when I'll go mad and maybe kill her?"

Words could not lessen his memory of Selene's beauty, though, or the way she made his blood go warm just by looking at him. It almost seemed to him that she was in the room with him, that he could smell her perfume, so much so that he looked around, and laughed to find himself alone.

"Having fancies like I'm addled already," he muttered.

Abruptly he tipped back the mantle of the lamp on the bedside table, lit it, and thrust the letters into the flame. Outside the inn, the wind picked up to a roar, leaking in through the shutters and fanning the flames to engulf the parchment. Hurriedly he tossed the burning letters into the cold hearth just before the fire reached his fingers. He waited until the last blackened curl went out before he buckled on his sword and left the room.
It's fairly clear to me that Lanfear had been using subtle Compulsion on Rand, as well as on Hurin and Loial to an extent. He's obsessed with finding her, thinks a lot of positive and romantic thoughts about her, and waxes on about her beauty, etc. I would argue that Rand does this to a greater extent than we would expect even regarding the most beautiful woman in history.

What's interesting to me is the last part about the letters. When Rand burns them, the wind picks up. Maybe this is symbolism, but is it possible Lanfear put a "tracker" in the letters not unlike what Moiraine did with her coins in EotW? Did the wind represent some breaking of the "spell," or was it Lanfear being pissed off and losing her temper when she realized what Rand had done?

Moreover, from the sound of it, I almost think the letters had some kind of latent Compulsion effects as well. Look at the portions I italicized above. Rand can "almost smell" her perfume, and even has the sensation that she's right there with him. Opens up some neat possibilities, IMO.

Of course, it's also possible that Rand is somehow sensitive to the One Power and whatever weave she used. Could this be a precursor to his ability to copy Isha'mael's Gateway resonance at the end of TDR?

Finally, we have the end of TGH, where Lanfear comes to visit Rand (Min's POV):

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Great Hunt:48 - "First Claiming"
The woman came to stand over the bed – her movements were so graceful, Min felt a stab of envy, though she had never before envied any woman anything – and smoothed Rand's hair as if Min were not there.
"He doesn't believe yet, I think. He knows, but he does not believe. I have guided his steps, pushed him, pulled him, enticed him. He was always stubborn, but this time I will shape him. Isha'mael thinks he controls events, but I do."

Her finger brushed Rand's forehead as if drawing a mark; Min thought uneasily that it looked like the Dragon's Fang. Rand stirred, murmuring, the first sound or movement he had made since she found him.
There has been much speculation about what Lanfear did here. It seems clear she wove something, because it affected Rand enough to make him stir and murmur (one would think Min crawling in bed with him might also do that...). Many have suggested she marked Rand or put another tracking weave on him (hence the chapter title). I think this is quite likely, but I also think she Healed him...to the extent she could.

In the next chapter, Min tells Rand about how both Moiraine and Verin tried to Heal him, but Moiraine thought Nynaeve did the best job. As we know, and as she even said, Nynaeve at this point couldn't channel unless she was angry.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Great Hunt:49 - "What Was Meant to Be"
He shook his head. Something told him the pain in his side was important. He could not remember being injured, but it was important. He started to lift his blankets to look, but she slapped his hands away.
"You can't do any good with that. It isn't healed all the way, yet. Verin tried Healing, but she said it didn't work the way it should." She hesitated, nibbling her lip. "Moiraine says Nynaeve must have done something, or you wouldn't have lived till we carried you to Verin, but Nynaeve says she was too frightened to light a candle. There is... something wrong with your wound. You will have to wait for it to heal naturally." She seemed troubled.
So the other speculative thought I have: did Lanfear do something to the wound to make it inoperable, so to speak? We've always assumed it was the True Power or some weave Isha'mael created when he stabbed Rand, but what if Lanfear threw her own brand of nasty in there?

I'm wondering about the implications of all of this for the last book, because we know that something is going to happen with Rand and Cyndane. If she's had some Compulsion weave on him all this time, or somehow tied herself to his wound, she could use this as a final ploy.

I just wish I knew how.
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Old 09-09-2011, 02:04 PM
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I'm on this exact same chapter (TGH #48) in my reread right now, as of this morning.

First, the wind that you refer to I've noticed on many, many occasions where Rand has a PoV in these first two books. It just occurred to me last night (as I read Chapters 45-48 or so), that it may be the case that Rand experiences this wind on every occasion that his destiny hangs in the balance (think of it is Rand's equivalent to Mat's dice-in-his-head). I thought about it because I also noticed that Rand arrives at various locations (Falme, Whitebridge, Fal Dara, Cairhien, Baerlon, the Eye - I'm pretty sure you get the idea) throughout the first two books just as the sun is rising.

As I just realized this mere hours ago, I haven't had an opportunity to double-check this theory for accuracy, but I've already planned to reread the first 3 books just as soon as I've finished TDR, because I have a ton of things I want to check on that I've noticed during this reread.

As for the Mark, I'm afraid I have nothing more to offer than you've already stated. In fact, if truth be told, I'm a paragraph or two away from Min finding Rand's slumbering body in that scene and Lanfear hasn't even entered the picture. So I'm a little underinformed to speculate at this time.

Thanks for the insight, though, CC.
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Old 09-09-2011, 02:11 PM
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I agree that it is possible that Selene used a tracer weave, but it would be more effective on a metal object, like Rand's sword or belt, than on a paper letter, not to mention those items would be kept for a longer time by Rand.

It would be interesting if such a compulsion weave were possible, to cast it on an object and have it triggered at a later time, possibly by it being handled by the target of the compulsion. That would have some interesting possibilities.
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Old 09-09-2011, 03:35 PM
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Observe how your theory has become canon:

Quote:
BRANDON
No, Rand. Lady Selene isn't suspicious AT ALL.

MIKE RENTAS
Did RJ ever explain her trick? I know she enhances her appearance, but is there an element of light Compulsion to it?

BRANDON
As far as I know, she didn't use Compulsion.
Hopefully Brandon's impressions won't become canon as well. (I think she had to use light Compulsion, or RJ really stretched the effects of female beauty to caricaturish proportions.)
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Old 09-09-2011, 05:21 PM
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Not sure what you mean about canon, but I was thinking more about the lasting impressions rather than the implausibility of her appearance. They could easily be one and the same, though--her victims see and feel exactly what she wants them to see and feel.

I think it's really interesting exactly how Rand thinks of her as he's touching and viewing the letters. He gets this touch of whimsy that seems out of character or context. Not to mention thinking she's standing there behind him. LOL
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Old 09-09-2011, 05:37 PM
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It's the same stupid effect when Perrin and Mat see her. Even Loial. Really implausible. (Not necessarily that she turns the heads of men, but that she's the only one that does it to that extent.)
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Old 09-09-2011, 06:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Terez View Post
It's the same stupid effect when Perrin and Mat see her. Even Loial. Really implausible. (Not necessarily that she turns the heads of men, but that she's the only one that does it to that extent.)
Even Min's mouth went dry in that TGH scene I quoted. Quite implausible.

Then there's this from TSR:

Quote:
Originally Posted by TDR:9 - "Decisions"
"You are Lews Therin Telamon. Oh, physically, nothing is the same except your height, but I would know who is behind those eyes even if I'd found you in your cradle." She laughed suddenly. "How much easier everything would be if I had found you then. If I had been free to..." Laughter faded into an angry stare. "Do you wish to see my true appearance? You can't remember that, either, can you?"
He tried to say no, but his tongue would not work. Once he had seen two of the Forsaken together, Aginor and Balthamel, the first two loosed, after three thousand years trapped just beneath the seal on the Dark One's prison. The one had been more withered than anything could be and still live; the other hid his face behind a mask, hid every bit of his flesh as though he could not bear to see it or have it seen.
The air rippled around Lanfear, and she changed. She was older than he, certainly, but older was not the right word. More mature. Riper. Even more beautiful, if that was possible. A lush blossom in full flower compared to a bud. Even knowing what she was, she made his mouth go dry, his throat tighten.
So it's a Mask of Mirrors type thing when she's Selene, but somehow she becomes even more beautiful than the woman who makes Loial and everyone else stammer.
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Old 09-09-2011, 06:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Terez View Post
It's the same stupid effect when Perrin and Mat see her. Even Loial. Really implausible. (Not necessarily that she turns the heads of men, but that she's the only one that does it to that extent.)
It also worked famously (and not even consciously on Lanfear's part) on Caldevwin at the inn they stayed at near the Choedan Kal. In fact, once she realizes that Caldevwin is making eyes at her and he asks for her name, she immediately channels to make one of the serving girls drop something to create a distraction, then immediately dismisses herself.

One thing I noticed about all of this (Caldevwin's encounter especially) is two things:

The effect is an area effect. Any male in close proximity to her seems to be affected equally, and she does not exhibit any ability to exclude certain individuals from the effect, or target specific individuals she wants to affect.

She seems unable/unwilling to turn off/control the intensity of the effect entirely, given how she handled the Caldevwin situation (be using the Power to cause a distraction, then excusing herself from his presence, rather than turning off or lessening the intensity of this effect, especially with regard to Caldevwin specifically).

Of course, Terez could have been displaying her world-class sarcasm here. Nevertheless, my post is also in response to CC's OP.
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Old 09-09-2011, 06:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Crispin's Crispian View Post
Even Min's mouth went dry in that TGH scene I quoted. Quite implausible.
Perhaps I spoke too soon, as I excluded mention of females being affected by this effect of hers in my last post. I'd like to investigate this further myself, but CC provided pretty good evidence of the exact same effect affecting both Rand and Min independently.
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Old 09-09-2011, 07:09 PM
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Perhaps someone can refresh my memory. I vaguely remember it being mentioned that Lanfear visited the Finn(Judging by what she supposedly was given it was the Eelfinn). Where she supposedly was granted the wish of being as strong as a woman can be in regards to saidar and the most beautiful women.

If this is taken as a legitimate event, although my vagueness may make this point moot. We can assume perhaps this Area of Effect is a result of what the Eelfinn did to her after her bargain.

Despite the recent rather in-depth looks into the Finn they remain largely a mystery. If that can plant generations of peoples memories in Mat, who's to say they can't do what Lanfear asked of them. Mat's price was death, but he went into the Ter'angreal doorframe unprepared. Which I highly doubt Lanfear would have done. I wouldn't be surprised if she sacrificed a fellow channeler to get what she wanted. We know how much they love channelers.

As I was writing this I remembered a piece of evidence that semi-backs up this information. Cyndane was noticeably weaker after her rebitrh. We have no knowledge that Aran'gar and Osen'gar were weaker after their rebirth. Therefore it can be reasonably concluded that it wasn't the cause.

However it could be that her time with the Eelfinn, provided she was not killed right away weakened her, like Moiraine. However if this was the case she would have been weakened to the point where she could no longer channel, completely drained, before finally being allowed to die. Unless she somehow managed to free herself during the process to take her own life which is a bit of a stretch.

It therefore seems more likely that she died after entering the Finn domain and was resurrected by the Dark One. Without the alterations made by the Finn back in the AoL. Thus, in conclusion, why she is not at her former strength and without the Area of Effect ability her original body exuded.

Of course this is all based on conjecture and hearsay. Which will probably be torn apart in the next post. Still an interesting theory in regards to her having no control over whom is effected and being unable to shut it off.

Last edited by Acaelus; 09-09-2011 at 07:14 PM.
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Old 09-09-2011, 07:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Acaelus View Post
Perhaps someone can refresh my memory. I vaguely remember it being mentioned that Lanfear visited the Finn(Judging by what she supposedly was given it was the Eelfinn). Where she supposedly was granted the wish of being as strong as a woman can be in regards to saidar and the most beautiful women.
This is Crispin's theory. It's about ten years old. It was also tied up in the Cyndane thing, if I recall, suggesting that Cyndane is what Lanfear looked like before. Those of us Theorylanders who post elsewhere managed to spread word of the theory, which gained popularity and a life of its own on other forums. But since you're not a lurker, you wouldn't have heard of that.

Quote:
Mat's price was death, but he went into the Ter'angreal doorframe unprepared. Which I highly doubt Lanfear would have done.
I don't think she realized she would be taking a trip to Finnland. Moiraine, on the other hand...

Quote:
Cyndane was noticeably weaker after her rebitrh. We have no knowledge that Aran'gar and Osen'gar were weaker after their rebirth. Therefore it can be reasonably concluded that it wasn't the cause.
The cause was presumably the same cause as Moiraine's loss in strength. The Eelfinn drained her, if not quite as much as they drained Moiraine; they told Moiraine they killed Lanfear by draining her too quickly, and perhaps that's true - as in, she died from the shock, but wasn't drained all the way. It's like torture; if you're really good you can keep the victim alive for a long time, but if you get too impatient, you might kill them on accident. However, it may be that they lied to Moiraine, since Moiraine saw a man come for her. The Shadow would not likely be ignorant of Lanfear's death, so why would they send someone in after her if she wasn't there?
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Old 09-10-2011, 02:59 AM
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This is Crispin's theory. It's about ten years old. It was also tied up in the Cyndane thing, if I recall, suggesting that Cyndane is what Lanfear looked like before. Those of us Theorylanders who post elsewhere managed to spread word of the theory, which gained popularity and a life of its own on other forums. But since you're not a lurker, you wouldn't have heard of that.
Cannot say I've heard of this particular variation of the common misconception that is the 'Lanfear is Cyndane' Theory.


Amusing concept, except that Mierin already showed Rand a younger version of herself in 'The Great Hunt' book. Let alone the fact Cyndane neither acts nor behaviors anything like Mierin/Lanfear. Perrin would have been a dead man, if Mierin wanted him dead. Likewise Perrin would be a dead man, if Cyndane truly was Mierin's soul. Recall Mierin found Perrin's Dreams repeatedly, and Perrin even found her's twice with Hopper's aid.


Cyndane's is a woman, who's native origin is from outside of the Westlands. A woman from the Third Age, not the Second Age. Another woman who is Moridin's plaything, one of many.
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Old 09-10-2011, 06:56 AM
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Cannot say I've heard of this particular variation of the common misconception that is the 'Lanfear is Cyndane' Theory.
We need not wonder why, as it's clear you've missed a number of memos.
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Old 09-10-2011, 03:04 PM
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We need not wonder why, as it's clear you've missed a number of memos.
Ha, ha... Robert Jordan didn't write memos, he wrote books.
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Old 09-10-2011, 05:17 PM
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It also worked famously (and not even consciously on Lanfear's part) on Caldevwin at the inn they stayed at near the Choedan Kal. In fact, once she realizes that Caldevwin is making eyes at her and he asks for her name, she immediately channels to make one of the serving girls drop something to create a distraction, then immediately dismisses herself.

One thing I noticed about all of this (Caldevwin's encounter especially) is two things:

The effect is an area effect. Any male in close proximity to her seems to be affected equally, and she does not exhibit any ability to exclude certain individuals from the effect, or target specific individuals she wants to affect.

She seems unable/unwilling to turn off/control the intensity of the effect entirely, given how she handled the Caldevwin situation (be using the Power to cause a distraction, then excusing herself from his presence, rather than turning off or lessening the intensity of this effect, especially with regard to Caldevwin specifically).

Of course, Terez could have been displaying her world-class sarcasm here. Nevertheless, my post is also in response to CC's OP.
This sounds to me like a ter'angreal.
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Old 09-12-2011, 03:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Terez View Post
We need not wonder why, as it's clear you've missed a number of memos.
Well, in this case Felix is correct, at least insofar as that was not part of my original theory. But as usual people ran with different variations.

I always figured Cyndane was a new body.

Unfortunately, the artificial power enhancement was shot down in ToM. But hey--maybe she was enhanced in other ways.
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  #17  
Old 09-12-2011, 03:21 PM
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This sounds to me like a ter'angreal.
It really does. At the least, it doesn't sound like any type of Compulsion we've previously seen.

We do have some precedence in the Crystal Throne:

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TITLE: Path of Daggers
CHAPTER: 23 - Fog of War, Storm of Battle

Few easily shook off the awe they felt, kneeling before the Crystal Throne, with the thirst to obey drying their tongues.
It probably also explains why she disappeared once in the city. She doesn't particularly like being around a bunch of people.
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Old 09-12-2011, 04:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Crispin's Crispian View Post
It really does. At the least, it doesn't sound like any type of Compulsion we've previously seen.

We do have some precedence in the Crystal Throne:


It probably also explains why she disappeared once in the city. She doesn't particularly like being around a bunch of people.
It would work on a much lower level than the Crystal Throne, obviously, but it does seem to have that effect. It can be very tiresome being around people who aren't being "real" with you, which would explain Lanfear's reluctance, but presumably she couldn't turn up without it because that would make people notice something odd about "Selene".

Of course, this begs the question where she got it from. The earliest Lanfear can have been released is the end of TEOTW, which doesn't really give her a lot of time to locate a cache of ter'angreal; she doesn't turn up in the Tower until TDR, if memory serves, so she couldn't get it from there. She may conceivably have had a cache near to Shayol Ghul before the sealing, or possibly had it on her person before being sealed. Or perhaps the Great Lord gave her instructions he knew she would follow, upon being released, and assisted her by also giving her the means to follow them; in a pre-travelling world it seems unlikely, but I suppose there could be any old things lying about in the Blight for a clever Trolloc or Myrddraal or Dreadlord to find.
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Old 09-12-2011, 07:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Crispin's Crispian View Post
It probably also explains why she disappeared once in the city. She doesn't particularly like being around a bunch of people.
Yeah, this hadn't really been evident to me until you just pointed it out. She does seem to have an aversion to crowds larger than 3 or 4 people; including the other Chosen.

Then again, there's the travelling party that she was part of out in the Waste. Certainly there were more than 3 or 4 people around her at some point during that trek...
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  #20  
Old 09-13-2011, 04:48 AM
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Originally Posted by the_collective View Post
Then again, there's the travelling party that she was part of out in the Waste. Certainly there were more than 3 or 4 people around her at some point during that trek...
Yes, but she was not really trying to appear all that blindingly attractive at the time, so she may have left the ter'angreal in a safe place then.

And she may not have needed to find it after TEOTW: it is possible that she had it with her when she was sealed away by LTT.

Of course, it is also possible there is no such ter'angreal at all.
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