I'm not perfect but I'm so close it's scary....

originally posted by Matthew

The things stated below may not reflect the true thoughts and feelings of the author of this post

A thread some people may take offence to but i'd ask you to actually think about what im saying before jumping to your guns :smiley: Again, apologies if this has been discussed in a previous thread.

Which of the brothers do you think is the most human? Do you think their behaviour and traits are realistic?

1)master archer,
2)master swordsman,
3)master mage,
5)master sailor,
8)a good listener
9) also able to be assertive without being bossy when the situation calls for it
10)brilliant tactician
11)skilled rider,
12) even more at home in the wilderness then a 30 year veteran scout.
13)Loyal (to a fault, crossover with flaws).

1)Mistwraithe's curse meant that his decisions were warped to a darker outcome and some futures without bloodshed were blocked out. If he has mastered the curse completely and is able to block the major attempts to control him and the sneaky insinuating manipulation then this is no longer a flaw.
2)His loyalty and sense of fairness means he takes risks or makes decisions which endanger him to spare them… i'm not even sure if this would be a flaw though.


Lysaer -
1) could cook a steak in under 1 second (also a flaw as it'd undoubtably be burnt),
2)would make a lovely decoration strapped to the top of a tree or pinned to a wall because of his diamond fetish.
3) able to produce cheap firework displays
On a more serious note…
4) he doesn't give up (even though he's been defeated many… many times. You'd think he'd have realised by now that Arithon isn't pure evil simply because he still has his head and kingdom. LOTR - if the fellowship had been facing Arithon instead of Sauron i think there'd have been a very different ending…)
5) he knows how to make a girl feel special, when he wants to.
6) he feels guilty - it shows that he does have a more sensitive side, it's just smothered under his sense of duty.
7) Has the ability to convince a bald starving man that using the last of his money to buy shampoo is a much better idea then buying food.

1) Pride
2) too Self-reliant - a leader is only as good as the people under his command. this ties in with…
3) poor judge of character - the people he appointed to take his commands and rule in his absence have been unreliable or corrupt.
4) self-righteous - mostly convinced of the truth of his cause, recently he's shown some doubt.
5) dresses to impress/fit expectations - he never dresses humbly, whether this is because he'd feel insecure without the trappings of power and wealth or becuase he knows noone will take him seriously without them only Ms Wurts knows.
6) also suffering under the mistwraiths curse and subject to the same effects.
7)etc etc lots more, but i have to sort out food :smiley:

Also, think about this.

On what planet can a man sleep with another woman and not only not be castrated, but actually win the sympathy of the woman he's cheating on? the answer… Athera. But only Arithon. With the hate most people have for Lysaer I doubt anyone felt like he deserved abit of a break with another woman when he was estranged from his first wife.

Even if Elaira is certain of his love for her through their bond i've never yet heard of a man successfully using the excuse 'it meant nothing, i don't love her i love you' without ANY reprecussions.

Also, did anyone REALLY think Arithon wasn't going to make it through the Maze? Arithon's mastery of mistwraith's curse, when you look at his many successes so far, seemed inevitable. What will be interesting is if/how Lysaer will achieve redemption when he has slapped away every hand offered in help.

originally posted by Angus

Matthew, Matthew, Matthew…

Don't you realize that at its heart, all fantasy, with some notable exceptions (e.g. George R.R. Martin - all the likeable characters keep getting killed!) is romantic. Not the lovey-dovey kind, but the sweeping romance of the early Victorian era. Think of the romance of LOTR - ruined civilizations, lost knowledge, Aragorn and Arwen, Eowen and Faramir, the valiant struggle by all, but especially Frodo and Sam, to complete an impossible task, and then, impossibly, completing it in an impossible way, and surviving to rebuild a land.

Sorry I didn't note a spoiler, but the ending's been known for over fifty years. I think I'm in the clear.

This is what makes it fun, because romance (and I mean the romance of Byron and Keats, not Danielle Steele) creates hope in the heart of the reader. Even when it is tragic, as so much of WoLaS is tragic, it creates hope that something beautiful will be created from it's ashes.

Arithon is an incredibly talented man, so much so he is almost unbelievable. But he is our hero, and he needs all that talent to do the things that are necessary. (Incidentally, Janny, he's a damn sight better than Bonnie Prince Charlie was at Colloden.)

One of the faults you fail to note is that he is prickly and arrogant. He is in no small part responsible for the way in which Lysaer was twisted, i.e. against the Clans, because of the way that he was introduced to the Clans. Asandir meant for Lysaer to experience the worst of the mayors before his sense of justice had to struggle with the Clans use of thievery, but Arithon just had to force a confrontation with the young Earl of Erdane. Had he not done so, Lysaer might have been curse-bound to unite the Clans, and wipe out the townies. How would our tale-spinner have made that work?

We all knew that Arithon would make it throught he maze. It was the How that mattered.

The sleeping around thing, well, that happened about fifty years ago, in the story, anyway. I agree, though, that it is a hard thing to comprehend. However, Elaira is currently Oath-bound to not tarry with Arithon, or any other man, for that matter. Their relationship is one of… oh, who am I trying to kid. I've read all the books and I still don't understand it.

Romance, my man. It's all about romance. That is what makes fantasy a good read. It is inspiring, because it creates hope in the breast of the reader. Sci-Fi, on the other hand, can be downright realistic, so much so that it creates cynicism in the reader. I face realism everday. I don't need it in my escapes.

originally posted by Blue

I agree with Angus on the "cheating" part, Matthew.

Yes, "it meant nothing, because I love you," BUT, at that point in time, Arithon and Elaira were not handfasted, engaged or married. Elaira is constrained by her vows to the Koriani to celibacy AND chastity - yes, they ARE two different things. As far as Arithon knew at that point, SoM, there was no way they could be together, sexually or otherwise, or the broken vows could be used against her to literally destroy her. It would have been no different for him to have cut her throat, as far as he knew, since she did not tell him about the temporary freedom from that particular portion of her vows.

I believe there is mention in TK that the empathic connection between them would have made sexual consummation the next logical step. Arithon stopped just short of that, because he did not know that she had been granted clearance of her vows at that time, for the purpose of binding him through sexual blackmail - I know of no better term for Morriel's actions. Both of them were ultimately frustrated, but only Arithon was free to do something about it - Dalwyn's own needs matched his own, and her inability to bear children* made it possible. She was in agony over a loss, the same as Arithon, so they were able to comfort one another.

For another reason, Elaira IS ultimately an understanding and perceptive woman, and she knew he was deeply distressed that they could not be together. It was brought to her attention by Traithe that Sethvir had an augury about her that for better or worse, she would come to know Arithon best of anyone alive. That is not the mark of a person who is going to give in to jealousy at the drop of a hat. It should be interesting, should Elaira meet up with Glendien in Stormed Fortress, what those two will make of one another, because Glendien sure acts like a groupie.

With his ability to use magic and his mage sight again, as well as his prowess as a Masterbard, I would also not be surprised if Arithon was calculating something to break her free of those vows. I guess we'll have to wait for November and SF, however, before we see.

* Arithon stated rather brusquely to Lord Jieret that he would NOT have any child of his raised while he was under threat by Desh-Thiere's Curse and the ensuing insanity, or under threat by many enemies who would seek to use such a child against him. He wants to BE there for any children he might have, eventually, "raised by their mother, and protected by the guarantee of my sanity," (paraphrase) I think that might have been stated because he knew the pain of losing a parent early, and not being raised by his father by default, because of the situation between Karthan and Amroth. He wants to make children, not orphans.

originally posted by Matthew

Two big posts to read on the first day! i love instigating debates. (I wouldnt be stooping to it if SF wasn't so far away though :smiley: )

I agree Angus. Romance makes the world go round, the earth move and your head spin, i can't read a story without it :smiley: whatever the backdrop i like to watch relationships unfold. oh, When you mentioned Arwen and Aragorn etc then Frodo and Sam i had to re-read that sentence :smiley:

Is Arithon our hero? or are there more twists in the tale to come…

I didn't mention Arithon's arrogance because it's never really seemed like arrogance to me, just complete confidence in his extremely remarkable abilities. I think it was Davien said somethign about people viewing him as arrogant but he views him as something else…

Hey Blue, coming to understand him the best doesn't necessarily mean that they end up together or have children does it … i never actually considered it before but maybe something fatal could happen to Elaira *gasp*.

Arithon's position on children might have changed a little judging from his reaction to Dakar's handling of the situation… or maybe its just more of his prickly attitude and a simple thankyou would have cracked his teeth :smiley: Even if he has mastered the curse there are still plenty of people baying for his blood.

oh another thought before i head to bed… when the Koriathain changed Areth how deep does the change go, would Lysaer's curse be triggered in his presence? if he is a double down to that final detail what would happen if Lysaer killed him. Would the curse fade away because it believed its purpose was fulfilled? This would certainly open the way for Lysaer to change without outside help.

originally posted by Blue

Matthew, if the F7 EVER wants to make sure the s'Ffalenn royal line continues, they are going to need Arithon's cooperation in making those heirs, and he's got a GOOD bargaining chip; he's the last s'Ffalenn, and there are no s'Ffalenn family members left back on Dascen Elur, unlike the multitude of s'Ilessids and s'Ahelas'.

Thusly, Arithon could hold the F7 over the barrel with the stubborn insistence on "Elaira or nobody, guys!"

You're probably right, that just because they're "prefect for one another" does not necessarily mean that they will end up together.

However, Elaira has her heart set on Arithon to the point where she openly defies her Prime for his sake "I will NOT betray Arithon!" and risks utter destruction through the power of her oath to the order - PG. That is NOT a light commitment, since she knew very well that her mind could be blasted into oblivion by the Prime's displeasure. She also took the supreme risk for his sake in attempting to clear her personal crystal, which could have backlashed nastily on her with the loosing of the longevity bindings she believed were in force. Sethvir and the Adepts, however, foiled that, so Morriel/Selidie would not discover that the longevity bindings had been supplanted by Grand Conjury made on Elaira's behalf by Luhaine back in SoM.

So its possible that they will LIKELY get together, through sheer force of will. Plus, Janny probably does not fancy getting the crap beat out of her by Arithon, who strikes me as a rather cranky muse. :smiley:

originally posted by Angus

It obviously takes a woman's touch to understand the relationship between Arithon and Elaira. I can feel it, but I can't explain it. So, I agree with Blue about everything she said about Elaira and Arithon.

Didn't mean to confuse anyone about the way I used the word "romance" or "romantic". I mean it in the historical sense, not the modern truncated meaning that it has. Everything about LOTR was romantic (get out your Byron, Keats and Shelly, and you will know what I mean. Those guys were really interested in ancient civilizations etc.). For example, the ruins of Eregion and Moria, the waning of the civilization of Elves and Men of the West, but the hope that the King will come again. THAT is the romance I am talking about. Frodo and Sam's heroic struggle through the plain of Gorgoroth amidst orc hordes, when Frodo can barely stand. Aragorn and Arwen are a part of that grand sweeping romance with a small bit of the love-romance that is the more modern meaning of the word. Faramire and Eowen are two broken people who together become whole, again, a small bit of romance amid the ROMANCE.

No, Frodo and Sam did not have a romance between them. Sorry for my lack of clarity in that sentence. I should have explained myself better.

WoLaS is grand romance similar to LOTR, but of course stands on its own merits. The romantic similarities are the ruined civilization (Paravians (Elves)); frustrated romance (Arithon & Elaira (Aragron & Arwen)); ruined people (Lysaer (Boromir, who redeemed himself in the end)); persecuted people (clans & talented (everybody west of Anduin)). We also have a clear view of the way we want it to be, knowing that it cannot quite be repared that way, but that it will be in some way, etc. and so on.

Arithon not our hero? Who, praytell, else would be our hero? Who do we cheer for as we read? Lysaer? Fionn Areth (I'm sorry, but that boy is just too stupid)? Actually, we have a number of heroes (I have become quite fond of Sulfin Evend) in addition to Arithon, such as Elaira, the F7, Dakar, the twins, etc., even the mysterious Davien (with a nickname like "the Betrayer", he sounds more like a wrestling anti-hero. Perhaps he's getting ready to join the WWE.). I think they all combine to be our hero.

Arithon's "heroship" in this story has been one of the very few predictable things that Janny has done. She has to keep some constants, or we will get mad at her (like I get mad at George RR Martin, who keeps killing most of the good guys).

I agree with Blue. Arithon would be a very cranky muse.

originally posted by Blue

The mind boggles - Davien in the WWE?!? :smiley: I could just imagine his brand of cutting remarks reducing his opponents twice his size to blubbering like babies; then taking the championship belt from one, looking at the cameras and saying, "You call this difficult?"

Personally, I think it might be interesting to have Janny write a short satirical story of Davien deciding to run for President of the US in 2008. Could you imagine the presidential debate, with Davien's sharp tongue at the ready? The mind further boggles, what party would Davien end up joining?

As for the woman's touch, well, I don't know how good MY particular woman's touch is, as I have never dated.

I guess we could view Arithon in the way of the old adage, "One man's villain, another's hero." He is a prickly, isolationist pain in the tail, and the clans are rightfully confused if not downright angry with him at times - witness Jeynsa's and Eriegal's reactions to him.

The main problem Arithon has with his relations with just about everyone else is his mage's outlook and upbringing. He does NOT explain his actions, and leaves himself wide open to misunderstanding and fear. Sure, he will share information, to a point, if the person ASKS, but like the F7, he WILL NOT volunteer information.

originally posted by Angus

I'm tellin' ya Blue, its the moniker "the Betrayer" that does it. "Jack the Ripper" comes to mind. "The Undertaker". Brett "the Hitman" Hart. I can come up with more, and I don't even like wrestling, and never watch it. I just thought it was funny.

Now running for President. That would have been better in 2004, or 2000. Can you imagine him trading barbs with George W. "don't say strategery" Bush? In 2008, imagine a face-off between Davien and Hillary Clinton. He'd have her reduced to tears. Or with Dick Cheney (if the guy is dumb enough to run)? Davien would have him admitting that the whole Iraq-Al Qaida thing was cooked up in Donny Rumsfeld's back yard during Thanksgiving in 2002. Come to think of it, the way that they have botched the whole job makes it look like that's the way it was planned…

Davien would be an independent. No party affiliation, except maybe with the remains of Ross Perot's protest movement. He could name Ross as his running mate.

Sorry, but Arithon, to date, is the hero. He does the good things, like get rid of necromancers, entertain children in knacker's yards, protects people by teaching them how to sail, all that sort of stuff.

Maybe he becomes the villain later? Possibly, but I don't see Janny as being that twisted. I do see her having Arithon make mistakes, but not making him a villain. He must "embrace kingship" after all.

Your right about his being prickly, though I would have used stronger language. However, then the mighty Webmaster would cut me down to size and cut out my post.

originally posted by Matthew

I think that we cant rule out anythign with Ms Wurts… and i made the point about Arithon because hero though he may always seem to be almost every plan he has requires some assitence… even if the other people only have bit parts. Defeating the necromancers took some assistence from Davien didnt it?

Do i dare draw parallels between the iraq war and Bush… Davien and the rebellion… methinks both had ulterior motives beside simple conflict. Even Dakar could run verbal rings round Mr President.

originally posted by Blue

I am not arguing that Arithon is a villain, but that is certainly perceived by many quarters on Athera, which must make for interesting times while Our Miss Wurts is at her computer.

"Let's see here, how can I take even the most simple and innocent action of Arithon's, and have it twisted into the most diabolical evil by Lysaer and his propaganda machine?" maniacal laughter.

I'm going to dodge the political bullet for the most part, especially since my brother decided to hide my soap box. It would be interesting, however, to see how Davien or another Atheran who is not afraid to speak his or her mind would perform in the Presidential debates. Especially if we could get one on the platform - Repub or Dem, who cares? - who is not so rampantly politically correct, and actually talks straight. Then again, even BEFORE political correctness, you could not get a straight answer out of an American politician. "Crookeder than a dog's hind leg" is probably how my sweet Southern granny would put it.

originally posted by Jo

Not to get too political I completely agree with you Matthew. Otherwise certain presidents/prime ministers would have gotten rid of a certain african ruler because he is also a tyrant. But then again there is nothing in it for the 2 leaders involved in getting rid of him. I would go a lot further and say what I really think but I had better not.

originally posted by DarthJazy

i THINK all of you are forgetting some visions dakar had in FP. It is possible that arithon turns to be the villion since dakar had a vision that a unicorn would gorge arithon with its horn muwhahahahahahaha

originally posted by Jo

Darthjazy I have the distinct impression that you do not like Arithon. Obviously there are more people on the message board who are rooting for the guy and we think we can really see Lysaer's faults before and after the curse. After everything Arithon has done and the fact that he has mastered but not of course vanquished the curse , the other prophecies and the fact that he has the gift (or curse) for his compassion how is it possible for him to be really really evil!!. Maybe I am blinkered cause I really do like the guy but everything he does good or bad he seems to do for everyone else, if he had his way he would have died when he was captured in Curse but Lysaer wouldn't let him, he would have preferred to have died in near enough every book but the F7 and the pact he has made will not let him. So my view is nobody has forgotton about that vision (not a prophecy as far as I am aware) but no one knows exactly what it meant. I know i'm running on so I will now go away. I hope this made sense as I'm rushing but I know what I mean even if no one else does - sorry everyone

originally posted by DarthJazy

its not that i hate arithon but everytime i read the books i have more respect and regret or lysaer. plus with everyone loving lysaer im just playing the devils advocate to make ya all remember arithon is not the only brother hurting here. lysaer has lost just as much but cant see reason over his bred true since of justice.

originally posted by Matthew

Lysaer at first glance seems to have less to offer then Arithon… but i've always felt redemption is all the sweeter if you have to go the furthest distance. Arithon mastering the curse is understandable… if somehow Lysaer pulls it off he should get a standing ovation :smiley: I'm hoping to see more of Lysaer in the future books =P

originally posted by Angus

I have to agree a little with Matthew. Janny has always been a moralistic writer. Take a look at the Empire series that she co-wrote with Ray Feist.

Repentence, redemption and forgiveness are a logical destination for this series. Might does not make right, which is precisely why we are mad at Lysaer. I am finishing my re-read of CotMW, and prior to being cursed, Lysaer showed incredible potential. He was capable of considering all sides of a dispute, and did show compassion. Yes, he was a hoity-toity privileged snob, but he was learning about the realities of life with incredible speed after coming throught the West Gate.

I have to disagree with DarthJazy. I do not respect Lysaer at all. His actions, after the doomed coronation at Etarra, are not worthy of respect.

And DarthJazy, not to be critical, but could you please take a little more time on your keyboarding? It is hard to understand your messages sometimes.

originally posted by DarthJazy

sorry im the reason spell check was created and the more i type the worse i get sometimes. im sorry

originally posted by Angus

DarthJazy: Thanks, man. Just slow down a little, and use the shift key once in a while for capital letters. I am a grammar freak (it's my father's fault, him being a history professor. It doesn't help that I'm a lawyer) and I admit it.

This is the only chat area that I go in. I cannot do internet abbreviations. They just wreck language.

originally posted by Matthew

Lol, the only reason my typing doesn't resemble a 5 year old's attempt at creating a new language is because i spend 30 mins re-reading every post… even then there's mistakes and half the time I still don't think i'm making my point clear enough (if there even is one).

I respect Lysaer for his persistence. In some ways he's alot like his brother, neither cares about the cost to themselves when they're pursuing a course of action. Where they differ is that Arithon doesn't think everyone else is expendable as well, Lysaer expects the same devotion to the cause from the people around him. If he had his way he would always lead from the front and face his enemies.

We all blame him for dragging everyone else into his feud with Arithon, but are we certain he had any choice in that? It may be that he would have gone after Arithon on his own … but with the curse driving him to use EVERY resource to destroy his brother he had no choice but to get others to assist him. He is utterly convinced that Arithon is evil and believes completely that if there is a chance for anyone to survive he must use everything he can to defeat the spinner of darkness. He must tell himself every day 'What are a thousands of lives when measured against hundreds of thousands of lives?' just to convince himself to carry on. He does care for people, even curse riddled he shows momentary gaps in the walls he's built up around himself, but he will also use them. I think that's tragic.

The way both brothers have handled things is a testement to their experiences growing up. The choices they make now are because of it.

originally posted by DarthJazy

Thank you Matthew that is exactly what I have failted to say.

a question I have is can anyone tell me the mahalla kings royal gift? I know they are all dead but have found the other 4 kingdoms gifts in the glossary but not this one. I'm refering too the Justice, empathy etc.