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  #1  
Old 01-08-2013, 11:34 AM
kcf kcf is offline
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Default Nakomi (Spoilers)

(NOTE FROM TAMYRLIN: This thread comes from a private forum I made available a few days before the release to those I knew had read the book. There are no spoiler tags, and a discussion of the entirety of A Memory of Light may follow. So expect full spoilers.)

---

I favor the idea of Nakomi as a hero of the horn - I believe the discussion with Avi occured in TAR. And I don't think that it was Bair or Sorilea that helped Rand in the epilogue - first, it makes no sense to not name them and second it makes little sense that they would help him in that way - basically, switching identities and surviving. Bair may be understandble if it was something she new from dreams/etc., but Sorilea doesn't really fit.

It was confirmed that the epilogue was all RJ. Has it been confirmed that the meal with Nakomi and visit to the ter'angreal in Rhuidien was RJ as well? I've always thought so. The whole bit with Nakomi is just too subtle to be Sanderson IMO.

It seems to me that she is hero of the horn, and as others have speculated, it's possible/likely that she was a hero born/re-born in the Aiel world and possibly a Jenn Aiel or even one of the AS with the Jenn (less likely in mind).

I think this is goes along with the idea that heros may not be exactly what they think they are - a major idea throughout the series. For example, we now have hero wolves (seperate note - I'm unsure if I'm disappointed or happy that Hopper didn't turn up as a hero wolf). I think Nakomi is something of an 'intellectual' hero, or at least one not tied to battle and conflict. A WO hero, perhaps a counselor, or AOL-type Aiel hero. A hero of peace.
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Old 01-08-2013, 11:46 AM
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It was confirmed that the epilogue was all RJ.
Actually, it hasn't been. We know for sure that Brandon wrote some scenes in the epilogue; it was mostly RJ material but Brandon had to modify all of it which included adding extra scenes.

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Has it been confirmed that the meal with Nakomi and visit to the ter'angreal in Rhuidien was RJ as well?
It's pretty certain that it wasn't. he might have put it in the notes, but we don't have any real reason to believe that he did.

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I've always thought so. The whole bit with Nakomi is just too subtle to be Sanderson IMO.
It's too subtle for RJ, IMO. As in, I don't think RJ would write something so completely pointless.
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Old 01-08-2013, 11:49 AM
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Actually, it hasn't been. We know for sure that Brandon wrote some scenes in the epilogue; it was mostly RJ material but Brandon had to modify all of it which included adding extra scenes.
Do we know exactly what was said at last night's Q&A? Because the 'tweet' round-up said that the epilogue was all RJ - which I take to mean that any changes were editorial and not substantive.
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Old 01-08-2013, 11:57 AM
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The epilogue read like it was RJ's voice instead of Brandon's...FWIW.
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Old 01-08-2013, 11:59 AM
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Yeah, I saw the tweet, and corrected it on Facebook. Hopefully there will be a video so we can see exactly what he said, but what I said above comes direct from the Team and Brandon's tweets on the subject. We have to directly ask Brandon about this on the tour, though—it's nothing we can put in the database yet—but for example we know he added the Cadsuane scene, and it was implied that other scenes were added.
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Old 01-08-2013, 12:32 PM
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Do we know exactly what was said at last night's Q&A?
All I could find was Tower Guard's tweets and some photos of the pamplet.
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Old 01-08-2013, 12:45 PM
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Weirdly enough, I kind of gave up on Nakomi.

Stuff like this smacks of failure to me. There's no real purpose to something like that unless you leave the readers enough clues to puzzle it out.

I'm undecided whether this came from RJ or Brandon. I think Brandon wrote the scene, but whether it came from the notes or not...

Bair recognized the name as an "ancient one", clearly. She didn't tell Aviendha what she knew about that name, evaded the question by telling her she knew no one (alive) of that name.

The Elan Morin scene suggested it was Lanfear who still had an interest in Aviendha, but it seems that was just Moridin trying to manipulate Rand again. Cyndane had rather returned to putting Rand in a situation only she could save him from (ie: her orders to Slayer)... if she decided to. Her confrontation with LTT shattered her last illusions, and she moved on to her "last plan" where she'd hold Shai'tan by the balls and she was for real his Last Chance.

Tel'aran'rhiod for the encounter with Nakomi doesn't work for me. A dreamshard, however... that might work.

This could suggest Nakomi was Moridin himself. Unlike Lanfear he probably has enough intimate knowledge of the Aiel to pull it off. But it's weak.. Nakomi truly acted as a guide to Aviendha. It's her conversation with Nakomi who inspired her for her notion of asking Rand for a boon. It prepared her for the fact the Aiel needed to change.

The Aiel prophecies have not been fulfilled. Not really. It's post series stuff. Rand alluded to it when he thought that Aviendha singing would be right. Himself has remembered the Voice, and used this power to sing to the Land. The whole Rhuidean arc makes little sense unless at some point in the future the Aiel return to the Way, to "their old places". Being peacemakers in between has to be a transition.

I highly suspect RJ changed how much resolution he meant to bring to that arc because of the Seanchan trilogy. The whole matter that the Tuatha'an are now with them, and the Aiel have to be peacekeepers betweeen the nations and the Seanchan provinces smack of "unfinished stuff I'm better wait for 5-10 years after TG to give as "easter egg". It's there were would have gotten the clues about Cadsuane's rule as Amyrlin and what she had set in motion, and how the situation with damane evolved during that extra decade. My bet is that we'll get some of that in the Encyclopedia instead).

So I don't know what to make of Nakomi. Thematically, it would make most sense to associate her with the efforts of the Rhuidean AS/Jenn to save the Aiel, and save their past for the time they could return to what they once were.

It's just damn hard to rationalize how Nakomi could have "returned" if she was a Jenn, a proto-WO, and somehow part of the programming, or a virtual reality set up with a ter'angreal.

That leaves the possibility she was an "envoy of the Creator", or else some half-ass badly justified ploy of Moridin or Lanfear.

It wasn't cool no more hint came. It's one of those frustrating kind of red herrings, and I highly suspect it's Brandon's creation, a mystery of his own that would endure and become part of the series's mythos (his own Asmodean, if you wish). in Q&A he seemed way too much to enjoy himself about Nakomi.
She comes straight from American First Nations' mythology. She's a mother-goddess/moon goddess. She is the one who taught shamans about Dreaming, who gave the tribes "dreamcatchers". It's very typical for a woman like Aviendha to have a "mystical experience" on her way to a trial/threshold like Rhuidean... just not typical at all for a character in WOT to have such a literal encounter with a creature like this. It's like myths became real all of a sudden, and a real god or its messenger walked the earth for real. Don't put it past Brandon to have added this, he's very knowledgeable about myths and religions, and he's got a fascination for those things.
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Old 01-08-2013, 10:06 PM
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It wasn't cool no more hint came. It's one of those frustrating kind of red herrings, and I highly suspect it's Brandon's creation, a mystery of his own that would endure and become part of the series's mythos (his own Asmodean, if you wish).
More like his Hoid.
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Old 01-08-2013, 10:43 PM
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More like his Hoid.
Should we call her Nakhoidmi from now on?

Actually, I'd be happy just to know if she's Brandon's or not.

I'm leaning toward this mostly because the way of life of the Aiel owes a lot to Amerindians etc. but 90% of their culture/mythology (as well as their coloring) is Celtic (mostly, not exclusively "Irish"). And now all of a sudden Aviendha crosses path with someone named after a native people's Moon Goddess, when there was no lack of celtic equivalents to name such a character after. Let's say it's suspicious.
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Old 01-09-2013, 12:15 AM
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Default Hmm

I was disappointed with the Aviendha/Aiel arc, especially after the Nakomi/Rhuidean moment in ToM. It seemed to me like we would finally have the Aiel Wise Ones/DreamWalking/Aviendha come full circle from TDR, TSR, TFoH. In that light I could have accepted Nakomi as either Wise One Dreamwalking or Jenn Aiel/Hero breaking precepts as the culmination of the Aiel Remnant, where they would find their own purpose in what was to come.

That didn't happen.

Still, I'm hopeful that we will find meaning in Nakomi as we go back looking for other clues.
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Old 01-09-2013, 02:07 AM
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I found it fascinating with some of these dilemmas. For instance Asmo I had no idea beyond Slayer\Forsaken who killed him. I never really got some of the weirder theories but it couldn't have been anyone else.


When someone makes a post in the guide of Sherlock Holmes about Nakomi, Ill listen to it and probably believe that, but until then it seemed sort of pointless to me.
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:57 AM
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Nakomi as Verin still has an attraction, for me. The impossibilities are many, but something about her in TOM reeked of Verin.

It seems to me that in terms of Prophesy and designated roles, the men have it all in the series. Part of that has to do with the theme of balance: women have had 3000 years to put their stamp on the world. The Pattern balances that by raising men high enough that their own deeds can set the tone for the next age, brining balance again.

For all that, one has to wonder if the Pattern didn't give birth to other souls than Rand, Mat and Perrin who would serve equally big functions, but would have less to herald them, less to make them seem special. Nynaeve, Egwene, Moiraine, Verin... they all seem to fit this mold. So Verin as a Hero, disguised as an Aiel, could make sense, I guess. Its just sad we have no clues.
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Old 01-09-2013, 06:35 AM
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Nakomi as Verin still has an attraction, for me. The impossibilities are many, but something about her in TOM reeked of Verin.
To me too, obviously. But her appearance to Aviendha was well before Rand's epiphany so the timelines don't seem to match up for that. That's why I argued it was Verin in the first place; she could have appeared to Aviendha before she died. Yes, it makes more sense if she'd already died—if she was still alive she wouldn't know anything about her past lives—but the suggestion that Verin was a hero didn't go over well with fans in general, and then there was the timeline. To me she's the only option that's interesting, but there aren't enough clues to give us anything close to a definitive answer, which makes it inherently uninteresting to me. If Brandon answers it on the tour, then yay, but somehow I doubt it, and either way I would have preferred something more tangible in the book(s).
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Old 01-09-2013, 08:25 AM
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More like his Hoid.
Hey now, I said that over at DM a couple days ago. A crossdressing Hoid in Aiel garb.
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Old 01-09-2013, 09:40 AM
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I was disappointed with the Aviendha/Aiel arc, especially after the Nakomi/Rhuidean moment in ToM. It seemed to me like we would finally have the Aiel Wise Ones/DreamWalking/Aviendha come full circle from TDR, TSR, TFoH. In that light I could have accepted Nakomi as either Wise One Dreamwalking or Jenn Aiel/Hero breaking precepts as the culmination of the Aiel Remnant, where they would find their own purpose in what was to come.

That didn't happen.
I feel much the same way. Some aspects of the Aiel story arc got seriously diluted, or perhaps "trivialized" would be a better word. They had one of the deeper, more complex arcs of all the groups in the series, I imagine it wasn't easy to step in RJ's shoes with them.
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:25 PM
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Default ...Hoid-ish

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About Nakomi:

I was re-reading her section in ToM. Now, there are multiple references there which point to her being in TAR: there are many fresh coals in the fire, it becomes warmer, and of course, Nakomi more or less disappears at the end. Further, the food Aviendha tastes is particularly delicious, which is weird, since Rand wasn't around, and hadn't had his epiphany yet.

So, on the one hand, Nakomi has a Rand-like effect on food. On the other hand, we assumed she was met in TAR... but what if she was doing what Rand was? Manipulating reality in the way a Dreamer would? Tied together with Brandon's quote that Nakomi comes from notes on Rand, I think the case becomes stronger for her to be some kind of Creator avatar. At the very least, she may be some kind of corrective mechanism of the Pattern, who, unlike ta'veren, gently nudges things based on what she knows of the future.

I'm still very attached to her being Verin. And if we accept Nakomi as a kind of Pattern corrector, this fits Verin even better. Verin did exactly that. A nudge here, a nudge there, always helping people, but doing so by giving them choice, and knowledge. Even when she speaks of her past and how she joined the Black, she talks of choice.
Someone should ask Brandon something along these lines to help us speculate further: have we met Nakomi prior to ToM? Or are there hints to Nakomi's presence prior to ToM? Something along those lines, not too definitive, while still letting us know if she was around prior to the first time we meet her and if he/Jordan hinted at such.

I recommend moving the rest of your post to a new thread as it will get lost in this discussion. Also, we should copy some of our Nakomi discussion over to the Nakomi thread.
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:30 PM
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Someone should ask Brandon something along these lines to help us speculate further: have we met Nakomi prior to ToM? Or are there hints to Nakomi's presence prior to ToM? Something along those lines, not too definitive, while still letting us know if she was around prior to the first time we meet her and if he/Jordan hinted at such.

I recommend moving the rest of your post to a new thread as it will get lost in this discussion. Also, we should copy some of our Nakomi discussion over to the Nakomi thread.

For what its worth, the Hoidish explanation sucks (as a plotline that is)
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:48 PM
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For what its worth, the Hoidish explanation sucks (as a plotline that is)
A "Hoid" isn't a new concept, and each author tends to tweak it's reason for being for their own purposes. For example, I quite enjoy Zifnab/Fizban from Weis/Hickman. Assuming the latest about this is correct, that Nakomi is from Jordan's notes, it wouldn't surprise me. Jordan set up the system quite well to contain such a type or types of corrective mechanisms, but hid it well from us until it is more overtly revealed. Plus, it doesn't seem that Nakomi actually did much (as Nakomi), we just had a chance to witness this one or two nudges. We didn't ever ask if there were other "corrective" mechanisms beyond Heroes and PLEs. At least as far as I recall.

But as with anything Jordan does, he tweaked and mixed the idea, and made it work within his own metaphysics. Perhaps it's a part of the breaking of the Pattern, something that cannot pass through normally into the Real World, until further walls are broken down. With a few more questions about Nakomi, we could open up larger fertile ground for speculation. But in essence I think we have covered clear possibilities.
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:52 PM
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A "Hoid" isn't a new concept, and each author tends to tweak it's reason for being for their own purposes. For example, I quite enjoy Zifnab/Fizban from Weis/Hickman. Assuming the latest about this is correct, that Nakomi is from Jordan's notes, it wouldn't surprise me. Jordan set up the system quite well to contain such a type or types of corrective mechanisms, but hid it well from us until it is more overtly revealed. Plus, it doesn't seem that Nakomi actually did much (as Nakomi), we just had a chance to witness this one or two nudges. We didn't ever ask if there were other "corrective" mechanisms beyond Heroes and PLEs. At least as far as I recall.

But as with anything Jordan does, he tweaked and mixed the idea, and made it work within his own metaphysics. Perhaps it's a part of the breaking of the Pattern, something that cannot pass through normally into the Real World, until further walls are broken down. With a few more questions about Nakomi, we could open up larger fertile ground for speculation. But in essence I think we have covered clear possibilities.
+1.

We know the Wheel is capable of "special miracles" too. It's how RJ explained the TGH vision in the sky.

It's perfectly possible there's a hidden "special nudger" corrective mechanism the Wheel sent out, and that's Nakomi.

In Greeek myth, she would be the Moira, which inspired a lot Moiraine's character.

Maybe RJ had his three Moira in Moiraine, Verin and Cadsuane for real, and Moiraine as the one who sets on a path, Verin is the "weaver", and Cadsuane is the one who decides when to cut the thread (so letting Rand "die" and go would be an allusion to that) and the Weaver, the middle one among the three Fates, returned in a special fashion in the guise of Nakomi, the Amerindian goddess similar to the Greek Moira.

The Three Fairy Godmothers overlooking the child in a craddle of the fairy tales are another incarnation, derived straight from the Fates.... and this fits Rand and Moiraine/Cadsuane/Verin really well... Verin suspected, Cadsuane came to late, Moiraine is the one who found Rand... then Verin protected him in turn, and nudged him, and finally Cadsuane sent him. At the end, two of them were still with him in the real world. Where was the third? She had become Nakomi.

This from an old essay I wrote (or rather.. it's one of the lengthy footnotes):

The Aelfinn & Eelfinn have strong links with both Knowledge and Destiny themes. They and their realms are inspired largely by races of the underworld and otherworld (not to be confused with hell and other lands of the dead) from many eras and cultures – often related to one another - like the Welsh elfin and fairy races, the Irish sidhe (shee), the old Celtic gods like the Tuatha dé Danaan, the French fées and the Arabic Jinns – among many others. Their realms are often perilous to humans but also full of secrets, hidden knowledge, magic and treasures, awaiting the daring hero or the incautious adventurer. “The fairies are people who transform, who can in an instant grant or refuse the most ambitious desires” [DS]. Christianity has often turned these old legendary creatures into mischievous demons, such as the incubus and succubus who haunted dreams to seduce humans and which are linked to Lanfear (see Lanfear essay) and Moghedien. The fairy tales derive in part from older myths, such as the three Greek goddesses of destiny, who spin and weave the threads of men’s lives – and cut them when time comes. It’s quite interesting that their name, the Moirai, is almost certainly an origin for the name Moiraine – currently presumed a prisoner in the realms of the Aelfinn & Eelfinn – as it is the source of Moghedien's original surname Moiral; she is another parallel of the Moirae. The Latinized Moirai, the Parcae, bestow gifts on newborn children. Other related goddesses include Athena, Freyja and the Norns (addition: Nakomi could simply be added to this list). A link to Moghedien is also found via the spiders (addition: Nakomi also means Spider/Weaver) that are often associated to the weaving myths, for instance with Athena and Arachne. All these myths and legends converge in the fairytales like Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty, with their fairy-godmothers. (The fairytale author Charles Perrault was a leading intellectual who wrote Parallels between the Ancients and the Moderns, a forerunner for the Age of Enlightenment in Europe.) It might be an uncanny coincidence, but the Fairy-godmother is translated from Perrault’s Fée-Marraine (thus, as Cairhienin have French influence, Moiraine could be a mix of Moirai and Marraine). The association to Moiraine is further suggested by the popularity of the Blue Fairy. It is indeed amusing to imagine Moiraine, Verin, Cadsuane and the sworn Aes Sedai as Rand’s fairy-godmothers, Moridin/Moghedien/Lanfear as evil witches/hags/godmothers and even the Black Ajah as the evil step-sisters. The confusion and convergence of many of the mythical and legendary motifs for the Aelfinn and Eelfinn, Moiraine, the Aes Sedai and even Lanfear is in itself quite notable. The theme of weaving, spinning and webs is unsurprisingly well developed in The Wheel of Time, and the associations to weavers from myth, legends and fairytales are plentiful. [DS, MF, CP, DH]

Last edited by Dom; 01-10-2013 at 05:11 PM.
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Old 01-10-2013, 05:17 PM
Tamyrlin Tamyrlin is offline
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Originally Posted by Dom View Post
+1.

We know the Wheel is capable of "special miracles" too. It's how RJ explained the TGH vision in the sky.
We call those "special miracles" PLEs, or Pattern Level Events, around here. I remember using GOI (Gap of Infinity) when asking Jordan a question, also Learner and Sparker, and having him give us this look like, "huh? what's that?"

Last edited by Tamyrlin; 01-10-2013 at 05:43 PM.
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