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Runes Part 2, Chapter 3 - The Will of the Ranyhyn
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 3:26 am    Post subject: Runes Part 2, Chapter 3 - The Will of the Ranyhyn Reply with quote

Ranyhyn. Wild free horses from the Plains of Ra. Earthpowerful quintessence of the Land. Land-riders and proud-bearers. Sun-flesh and skymane. The glory of the Lords; the dream of the Haruchai.

The Ranyhyn played a significant role in the First Chronicles, and in turn were a significant part of its beauty. They, more than any other single element, helped us fall in love with the Land. However, they were very limited as characters. At most times they were mere devices, super horses who enabled our heroes to be where they needed to be, and from time to time got them away from where they didn't want to be. As simple and as convenient as starting a car, you could just whistle and they would appear. On those occassions where they acted on their own, they acted mysteriously, inscrutible forces of nature, too lofty and too alien for humans' comprehension.

That changes now. In Runes, they shake off their mantle of passivity.

This chapter begins with Linden's admission, Lord Foul has my son, still hanging in the air.

To this, she adds, I'm not going to let anything stop me.

The Ramen protest. But Stave, unexpectedly, does not. He does not support Linden, but he will not contest her either.

During the previous two chapters, Stave and Linden have been having a low-key battle of wits. Stave explained why he believes that the Ramen misjudge.
Quote:
"The Ramen cannot know how the Bloodguard loved the Giants. They cannot grasp how the hearts of the Bloodguard were rent by what had transpired. Therefore they presume to scorn our fall from faith."

So when Linden throws that argument back at him
Quote:
"You weren't there when Covenant sacrificed himself. You weren't there when I took his ring and turned Vain and Findail into the Staff of Law, or when I erased the Sunbane, or when-" For an instant, she choked on the memory of Covenant's farewell. Then she shouted, "And you sure as hell weren't there when Covenant and I were summoned in the first place!" When Jeremiah had burned away half of his right hand in the Despiser's bonfire. "You think you have the right to pass judgment, but you don't know what's at stake for me."

Her argument about judgement scores a hit on the Haruchai. And he is moved.
Quote:
"In ages past, the Haruchai have doubted you-and have learned that they were mistaken. And we have not been present to share your burdens. Their cost is hidden from us. Therefore I will not strive to prevent you now.

And so it is that Linden convinces Stave to withold his judgement. Perhaps it represents Linden becoming more compelling. But I feel that this passage says more about Stave than about Linden. Stave is changing. Isolated from the other Masters, witness to Linden's need, he's coming around to a new way of looking at things. His journey may end up transforming all of the Haruchai.

The Ramen assembly ends on that note. Mahrtiir desires to travel with Linden, protect her; she agrees. But then old Dohn drops the bomb. "How will you return?"

Quote:
Her pulse labored in her temples as she said, "If I can't use the first one, I'll have to make a new caesure."

During her translation to the Land, she had seen herself rouse the Worm of the World's End with white fire. Perhaps Lord Foul had already accomplished his aim. By kidnapping Jeremiah, he may have ensured the Land's destruction. If she misjudged her power, or herself, or the stability of the Arch, she might bring Time to an end.

There is the risk that makes the other risks look feeble: Linden could need to make her own ceasure!

But Liand is not daunted. Despite her best efforts, Linden cannot talk Liand into staying behind. "Your intent is not to destroy the Earth, but to redeem it, as you seek also to redeem your son. I will abide the outcome with you." Plain, simple Liand can see into the heart of the matter, and has no fear; how can we not also abide the outcome with her?

Soon enough, despite his wounded hip, Stave is ready to depart. He summons his Ranyhyn.

But lo! The Ranyhyn reveal that they have their own intentions. Hyn, Linden's Ranyhyn, as well as Hynyn answer the call. And when Stave mounts and attempts to ride, Hynyn balks. The Ramen chuckle.

Forgive me for going on a wild tangent at this point, but its the only way I know of to say what I want to say. I want to talk just for a second about the US Marines. Neil Stephenson wrote something in Cryptonomicon about the Marines that I always thought was profound.

Quote:
"Says right here you are gung-ho."

"Sir, yes sir!"

"What the hell does that mean?"

"Sir, it is a Chinese word! There’s a Communist there, name of Mao, and he’s got an army. We tangled with ’em on more’n one occasion, sir. Gung-ho is their battle cry, it means ‘all together’ or something like that, so after we got done kicking the crap out of them, sir, we stole it from them, sir!"

"Are you saying you have gone Asiatic like those other China Marines, Shaftoe?"

"Sir! On the contrary, sir, as I think my record demonstrates, sir!"

"You really think that?" the major says incredulously. "We have an interesting report here on a film interview that you did with some soldier named Lieutenant Reagan."

"Sir! This Marine apologizes for his disgraceful behavior during that interview, sir! This Marine let down himself and his fellow Marines, sir!"

"Aren’t you going to give me an excuse? You were wounded. Shell-shocked. Drugged. Suffering from malaria."

"Sir! There is no excuse, sir!"

The major and the colonel nod approvingly at each other.

This "sir, yes sir" business, which would probably sound like horseshit to any civilian in his right mind, makes sense to Shaftoe and to the officers in a deep and important way. Like a lot of others, Shaftoe had trouble with military etiquette at first. He soaked up quite a bit of it growing up in a military family, but living the life was a different matter. Having now experienced all the phases of military existence except for the terminal ones (violent death, court-martial, retirement), he has come to understand the culture for what it is: a system of etiquette within which it becomes possible for groups of men to live together for years, travel to the ends of the earth, and do all kinds of incredibly weird shit without killing each other or completely losing their minds in the process. The extreme formality with which he addresses these officers carries an important subtext: your problem, sir, is deciding what you want me to do, and my problem, sir, is doing it. My gung-ho posture says that once you give the order I’m not going to bother you with any of the details—and your half of the bargain is you had better stay on your side of the line, sir, and not bother me with any of the chickenshit politics that you have to deal with for a living. The implied responsibility placed upon the officer’s shoulders by the subordinate’s unhesitating willingness to follow orders is a withering burden to any officer with half a brain, and Shaftoe has more than once seen seasoned noncoms reduce green lieutenants to quivering blobs simply by standing before them and agreeing, cheerfully, to carry out their orders.

Such words must convey how it really feels to ride a Ranyhyn. Sure, it would be exciting. Sure, I would be proud. But part of me would be quivering from the implied responsibility placed upon my shoulders by the Ranyhyn's unhesitating willingness to bear me wherever I wish to go, no matter the danger.

The Ramen understand this in their bones and blood. "Ringthane, you are reluctant to ride. For that we honor you. It is fitting to be humbled by the Ranyhyn."

Eventually, everyone figures out that the two Ranyhyn are asserting their will, and that they will not do anything else until they have taken Stave and Linden wherever they wish to take them. In this their will must not be thwarted.

And so it is that Linden and Stave find themselves riding deep into the Southron range.

Before long, their conversation turn to the obvious topic: the one other time where the Ranyhyn expressed themselves, revealed their will to the people of the Land. The time when a Ranyhyn carried a young Elena away to the horserite of the Ranyhyn.

And it suggests an answer to the question of their destination. Linden and Stave are being taken to the same tarn where Elena was led, where she drank the cold waters, and where she learned the tale of Kelenbhrabanal's doom.

And they argued about what it really meant.
Quote:
"What was the warning?" she insisted. "I don't see what Kelenbhrabanal has to do with Elena. She wasn't looking for a way to sacrifice herself."

Not according to the little that Linden had heard of those events.

The Master appeared to sigh. "You know the tale. High Lord Elena sought the Seventh Ward, the Power of Command, so that she might compel Kevin Landwaster from his grave against Corruption. She believed that despair would anneal Kevin's heart, rendering him from pain to iron, making of him an indomitable tool.

"In this she was wrong, to the great cost of all the Land.

"Bannor deemed then, as do the Haruchai now, that the Ranyhyn had perceived a flaw in the High Lord's comprehension. By means of their horserite, they sought to alter the course of her thoughts. They wished her to grasp that despair is no more potent or salvific beyond death than it is in life."

If Bannor and his descendants were right, the Ranyhyn had read Elena's future in her young eyes. They had seen the time ahead of her: who she would become; what she would do.

And Elena had not heeded them.

Did the Ranyhyn read the future? Do their time-loose powers of perception extend to this kind of prognostication? If so, the implications are astounding.

Think about what it means to be chosen by the Ranyhyn. Is it an honor? Is it an indication of valour? Or is it, as these lines imply, that you are chosen to meet a future need that only the Ranyhyn see? If so, then perhaps the Ranyhyn are not the passive although superb beasts of burden that they seem to be. Perhaps all along they have been shaping events in the Land by choosing whom they would bear.

Perhaps the will of the Ranyhyn has been an invisible hand all along.

When Esmer said to Linden, Look to the Ranyhyn, were the Ranyhyn awaiting for that call? Did they hear the call long before the whistle was loosed?

The two riders travel farther and farther, deeper and deeper, into the moutainous wastes. Finally, they reach their destination, a cliff-walled glen, a grassy floor, a pool of icy water. The two Ranyhyn do not hesitate; they shrug off their riders, drink, and then gallop in pounding ecstacy.

Linden wonders if they should drink. Stave does not want to.
Quote:
"I am Haruchai," he replied as if that answer sufficed. "We have no need of horserites."

Could there possibly be a more Haruchai answer than that, I wonder?

But Linden thinks Stave should partake of the rite. The Masters need all the warnings they can get. When Stave claims that the Haruchai need no lessons in despair, she bites back
Quote:
"No," she protested as if she were sure. "No." Her hands insisted at his shoulders. "Bannor heard what High Lord Elena said, but none of you heard the warning."

"Sure," she went on, "Kelenbhrabanal's despair didn't save the Ranyhyn. I get that. But what did?

"It wasn't anything grand. It wasn't Lords or Bloodguard or white rings or Staffs. The Ranyhyn weren't preserved by Vows, or absolute faithfulness, or any other form of Haruchai mastery. That was the real warning."

"Linden Avery?" Stave sounded implacable, ready for scorn.

But she had come too far, and needed him too much, to falter now. "It was something much simpler than that. The plain, selfless devotion of ordinary men and women." The Ramen. "You said it yourself. The Ranyhyn were nearly destroyed until they found the Ramen to care for them.

"They wanted Elena to understand that she would be enough. She didn't need to raise Kevin from death," or give up sleep and passion, "or do anything else transcendent," anything more than human. "All she had to do was trust herself."

All she had to do was trust herself. Is that the real warning? No, it cannot be. Elena was not enough. Only white gold was enough, and even then, only for a while.

They walked to the tarn. They stooped. They drank.

And then they ran like the Ranyhyn.

- - - - - - - - - -

Question As Linden tries to mount the Ranyhyn, she mutters "All right. I don't understand any of this. Never mind that. Help me up." When I read this, I cannot help but think, what a Covenant thing to say.

Question At one point Linden thinks about Foul's words, "If you fear what has been 'done,' think on the Elohim and be dismayed." Did the other Elohim screw up when they did whatever they did to Kastenessen?

Question Why are there only two Ranyhyn at the horserite? Linden is sure it means something.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 12:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I love this chapter! Great dissection, WF!

I think SRD develops the Ranyhyn into pivotal characters in the series here. As WF mentioned, before they were not much more than horses who carried their riders and offered their lives in service to Thomas Covenant. Now we see, they have not only their own consciousness but their own wills, and a desire to shape the events which could have profound effects on their lives.

I don't know about anyone else, but it never really occured to me that Elena attending the Horserite was anything more than the Ranyhyn wishing to honor the child of the Ringthane. That is, until SRD made this comment when Fist&Faith asked about Elena at Elohimfest 2004:

Quote:
It is not irrelevant that [Elena] is the only character in the history of the stories as far as we know who has attended a Horserite. That wasn't an accident of horse hormones. They did that on purpose because they saw in her the capacity to be pivotal. Therefore, they wanted to have some influence on which way she pivoted.


I just love it when ROTE brings back the previous story and makes it relevant again.

As to why there aren't more Ranyhyn at the Horserite - I think that the Horserite that Elena attended was THE Horserite, the one that occured every so often. This one obviously is special, and had to be conducted outside of the norm.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 9:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

excellent job, wayfreind. I too love this chapter for the changes in Stave (and there are more to come!) and the hint that the Ranyhin are taking an active role ...
Spoiler:
ESPECIALLY that moving chapter when they bid Ramen to ridew them...!


I love the way Linden tries to reason with everyone. The exertion of logic and feeling! TC would have grunted and hoped that others would blunder along after him.
Linden is desparately trying to make everything work. Yah, to save her son, but also for the Land. And she has only her (shaky) confidence, logical healing mind, and passion.

Love it!
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wayfriend wrote:

Think about what it means to be chosen by the Ranyhyn. Is it an honor? Is it an indication of valour? Or is it, as these lines imply, that you are chosen to meet a future need that only the Ranyhyn see? If so, then perhaps the Ranyhyn are not the passive although superb beasts of burden that they seem to be. Perhaps all along they have been shaping events in the Land by choosing whom they would bear.

Perhaps the will of the Ranyhyn has been an invisible hand all along.

When Esmer said to Linden, Look to the Ranyhyn, were the Ranyhyn awaiting for that call? Did they hear the call long before the whistle was loosed?


Wow! Nicely put. Before this chapter I only saw the Ranyhyn as exceptionally intelligent Earth-powered horses. This chapter certainly makes you reconsider the role of the Ranyhyn.





dlbpharmd wrote:

As to why there aren't more Ranyhyn at the Horserite - I think that the Horserite that Elena attended was THE Horserite, the one that occured every so often. This one obviously is special, and had to be conducted outside of the norm.


I think you're right. Although Elena and Linden were brought to the Tarn for similar reasons, there was plenty of time to transport Elena to the regularly scheduled Horserite. Linden's journey to the Tarn had a sense of urgency to it. It was sort of her own personal Horserite.
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 12, 2007 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tulizar wrote:
I think you're right. Although Elena and Linden were brought to the Tarn for similar reasons, there was plenty of time to transport Elena to the regularly scheduled Horserite. Linden's journey to the Tarn had a sense of urgency to it. It was sort of her own personal Horserite.

Think about it. Spoiler:
Are you suggesting that the Ranyhyn were somehow not as ready for Linden's horserite? That they didn't know when it would be? That they didn't answer the call before the call was made?
Wink Very Happy

Nope. I can't see that happening. If there's something to there being only two horses, it has to be that that's part of the message. Something like, they were trying to impress Elena with spectacle, while they are trying to move Linden by reason. Or something along those lines.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 13, 2007 12:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wayfriend wrote:
Tulizar wrote:
I think you're right. Although Elena and Linden were brought to the Tarn for similar reasons, there was plenty of time to transport Elena to the regularly scheduled Horserite. Linden's journey to the Tarn had a sense of urgency to it. It was sort of her own personal Horserite.

Think about it. Spoiler:
Are you suggesting that the Ranyhyn were somehow not as ready for Linden's horserite? That they didn't know when it would be? That they didn't answer the call before the call was made?
Wink Very Happy

Nope. I can't see that happening. If there's something to there being only two horses, it has to be that that's part of the message. Something like, they were trying to impress Elena with spectacle, while they are trying to move Linden by reason. Or something along those lines.


I see what you're saying. How could the time-fluid Ranyhyn not be ready for Linden's Horserite? Doesn't make sense huh? I like the notion that Elena's Horserite was more of a spectacle to impress her. Linden has seen and experienced so much in the Land that a visual spectacle might not have the same effect upon her.

I didn't mean to suggest that the Ranyhyn were unprepared for Linden's Horserite. By all accounts they appeared to have everything under control and planned out. It just seemed that they wasted little time transporting Linden to the Tarn as if there was a sense of urgency. Perhaps this was intentional; part of the Ranyhyn's plan to make an impression on Linden. Aside from the knowledge Linden was to learn at the Horserite, I think it was important for the Ranyhyn to impress Linden with a need to act quickly yet intelligently.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 13, 2007 7:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My first thought reading the chapter originally was that these were among the remnants of the proud Ranyhyn. Perhaps the last of them all.

Spoiler:
Suddenly though, and I mean suddenly, wasn't something said about them being the only two willing to perform the rite for her? I can't remember.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 13, 2007 4:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good stuff here. I had to listen to the chapter again before I posted...

There is a comment about my favorite Ramen that may be telling... when Mahrtiir volunteers to join Linden on her quest for the Staff, she notices his energy and thinks something like "she did not completely trust him. he seemed a bit too overeager." Another hint?

Also interesting is how the Ramen know what's going on when the Ranyhyn refuse first Stave, then Linden. "She will not bear you where you wish to go. Nonetheless, she wishes to bear you." This is clearly more than just reading the horses' body language. How much can they communicate with each other? This is similar to the question of how the Ramen know the horse's names...

Wayfriend wrote:
Perhaps the will of the Ranyhyn has been an invisible hand all along.

dlbpharmd wrote:
I don't know about anyone else, but it never really occured to me that Elena attending the Horserite was anything more than the Ranyhyn wishing to honor the child of the Ringthane.

Neither did I. It also makes me think of something in the GI where SRD compared the Ranyhyn to the Haruchai in the way that they are connected to the essence of the Land and to the Earthpower. It makes sense that they would also be trying to influence events, as do the Haruchai. It's just that their interpretations and decisions are very different from those of the Bloodguard/Masters. They seem to be able to see possibilities or potentials in peoples' futures, and will attempt to influence them. But then they are willing to allow events to transpire as they will. Very Creator-like.

(btw, I never knew the reference, but when I saw the Narnia movie it was clear where SRD got the idea of Kelenbrahbanal's failed sacrifice. But Aslan did not truly die, or was resurrected. Is something similar in store for the Father of Horses?)

Tulizar wrote:
It just seemed that they wasted little time transporting Linden to the Tarn as if there was a sense of urgency.

I believe it's because they do understand Linden's plight and want to support her decisions as soon as they can. But first, they want her to understand their position.
Spoiler:
As we find out, they will take her where she wishes to go. Just not yet. And in essence, they end up taking Stave where he wants to go, when they come back to the present.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 1:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Relayer wrote:
There is a comment about my favorite Ramen that may be telling... when Mahrtiir volunteers to join Linden on her quest for the Staff, she notices his energy and thinks something like "she did not completely trust him. he seemed a bit too overeager." Another hint?

I hope it's another hint. I really like Mahrtiir and would love to see him set himself apart.

Relayer wrote:
Also interesting is how the Ramen know what's going on when the Ranyhyn refuse first Stave, then Linden. "She will not bear you where you wish to go. Nonetheless, she wishes to bear you." This is clearly more than just reading the horses' body language. How much can they communicate with each other? This is similar to the question of how the Ramen know the horse's names...


Interesting. Even though it's never been spelled out in the Chrons, I always assumed that there was some sort of special bond between the Ramen and Ranyhyn that transcended normal communication. It does make me wonder how this is possible.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 1:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Avatar wrote:
My first thought reading the chapter originally was that these were among the remnants of the proud Ranyhyn. Perhaps the last of them all.

Spoiler:
Suddenly though, and I mean suddenly, wasn't something said about them being the only two willing to perform the rite for her? I can't remember.


--A


That thought occured to me. We've seen 2 races of the Land annihilated in 1st and 2nd Chronicles, could the Ranyhyn be next? Along those lines, if the Ranyhyn population is diminished, could the cause be that they've been so long away from the Land, with its' close-to-the-surface Earthpower?
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 3:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I doubt that the Ranyhyn are near extinction. If they were, the Ramen would be freaking out.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 6:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe they are.

Remember how they met the suspicion of the Haruchai who obviously suspect the same thing?

Not with proof that they were wrong.

And I too wondered about the effect of their abscence from the Land.

And let's face it WayFriend...everything must go.

It'll be just like SRD to kill the Ranyhyn...I mean, he brought down the Watch!

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Ranyhyn aren't dead yet ... they'll go, but it'll be on stage so we can cry. Of this I feel sure. They Ramen would be haggard and unsure of themselves if the meaning of their lives were disappearing. Instead they are confident; the way they stand up to Stave seems confident to me.

Right now they are to the South, with the majority of the Ramen, the elders and the children. ( The Ramen that Linden meet are on their once-every-decade journey north to the edge of the Land. ) That's my interpretation.

I believe that they don't bring the Ranyhyn because, well, they don't bring Ranyhyn. And I believe that they didn't mention the Ranyhyn because they had not yet tested Linden, and that they did not want Stave, and thereby the Masters, to know of the Ranyhyn. They fear the Masters would misuse the great horses; they certainly would not do the Haruchai any favors. Their goal, as stated, is to keep them away from the Land. It's only after Stave was accepted by the Ranyhyn that the Ramen relented their secrecy.

I can't think of anything that disputes that there are only a few Ranyhyn left. But it doesn't seem to fit. And I think that the clues you mention mean other things.
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 15, 2007 6:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good post. Very Happy

I certainly agree that it'll be onstage, and you're right about the attitude of the Ramen. But I still think that the Ranyhyn are lessened in numbers at least since we saw them last.

--A
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 15, 2007 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks. Not to beat a dead horse ... heh ... but last we saw the Ranyhyn, they were not doing too good.

Quote:
"Manhome is abandoned. Ramen and Ranyhyn are scattered." ... All of them, even the children, were haunted by the bloody visage of Ranyhyn extermination.


But I know what you mean. I'm sure that they cannot be doing as well as they did when they had their Plains.
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2007 5:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Laughing Good point. But yeah, I meant when they roamed the Plains of Ra. Wink

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 10:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Help me with something - when Stave is telling Linden about the history of Kelenbhrabanal, he says that the Ranyhyn were at war with the wolves of Fangthane the Render before the time of Berek Halfhand. What do we know about Foul's presence in the Land at this time? When did he come to the Land?

The Ramen certainly knew about Foul/Fangthane, but Kevin didn't recognize him. Did the Old Lords at least know that there was some malevolent being "out there?"
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2007 7:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Damned if I know, and I don't have my books handy. He only came after the destruction of the One Forest IIRC. I'm not sure if, at the time Stave is talking about, the ranyhyn were battling with the Kresh as agents of Foul...although, is possible, since it was with Foul that the Horse Father (Can't spell his name off the top of my head Wink ) made his deal.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2007 1:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd have to say that it's plausible. I don't think anyone knows precisely when Foul came to the Land. We do know that he's been in the Earth since it's Creation.

There's a lot of leeway for Donaldson here. The Lords may not have known about Lord Foul, but that doesn't mean he wasn't around.

It's possible, and even in character, that Foul would have spent a while practicing his moves before he moved openly against the Lords. He might have tried mastering kresh and tormenting Ranyhyn for a while first. Even if people in the Land, or even the Ramen, knew of the kresh, they might not know that Foul was behind them. And if Foul revealed himself to the Ranyhyn, well, know one else may have heard about it, and even if they did, he was only Fangthane the Render -- they might not connect that to anything else.
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 10:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wayfriend wrote: Why are there only two Ranyhyn at the horserite? Linden is sure it means something.


Having just read through this chapter I needed to read your dissection to see if I could grasp some of what has happened. My initial thoughts about this chapter are that this is the middle point of the book - the fulcrum of the RUNES OF THE EARTH - and within the depths of the tarn are the hidden answers.

Question Why were there only two Ranyhyn? Maybe because of what Linden said - more to herself than - to Stave:

Quote:
"So here's another fine mess you've got me into."


The Ranyhyn picked up on this, (although they couldn't have possibly known who Laurel and Hardy were!) they perceived the humour in what she said. But when Linden drank from the tarn she became hysterical on the flip side. Instead of laughing her head off, she cried uncontrollably. The trauma that Linden connected to was Jerimiah, Covenant, and Jehannum. She missed the point. Just as Elena did. The horserite failed...well, almost. Stave was there Big Grin Exclamation

p.s. Since writing this dissection Wayfriend, did you find an answer to your question on why only two Ranyhyn were at the horserite. I'd be interested to know how your idea's may have changed since then.
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