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Was SRD aware of the Insequent before the Last Chronicles?
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2007 2:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Apart from the fact that I wonder whether the Insequent themselves were the basis used by students of lore in the Land for the Unfettered path (lore-wise people, each of them acting by him- or herself, without interfering with the others, and each of them devoted to a specific aspect of power, in the Unfettered's case Earthpower), I think the problem of their "sudden" appearance can easily be explained away.

The Mahdoubt, for instance. Until she was met in the Land's past, nobody could imagine she was an Insequent or she had so much power; sure, she seemed odd, and sure, she seemed to be a bit prophetic, but then again that wasn't beyond the scope of a "seer and oracle" from the Lords' times. So it is perfectly conceivable that she lived, unnoticed, through the Land's history... until she had to use her power to save Linden twice. The Harrow hints at that the Mahdoubt was well-known when she was younger - but she may easily have been known among the Insequent only (sort of a "scholarly knowledge of other experts in other fields", which makes sense).

The Harrow had no need to visit the Land before Linden's arrival, if what he wanted was the Staff of Law (and we have to assume he had no way to find it, having devoted his study to the Viles, the Demondim and the Demondim-spawn, so he had to wait for the Staff to show up again) and the white gold ring (which he wants to be given willingly, so as to preserve its power). So it makes sense that we never heard of him earlier, either.

The Vizard wasn't even met directly - he was mentioned by Jeremiah (who could have "met" him anytime in the 3500 years since the Second Chronicles) and by the Haruchai as a relatively reclusive-looking person, so it's not a surprise that he wasn't known to the Land either.

Finally, we have the Theomach. As the greatest of the Insequent (it seems all the Insequent grudgingly agree on this) he is the one who had the biggest impact in the history of the Land. Technically speaking, we met him in the Second Chronicles (the Guardian of the One Tree was certainly not a normal human being, he was apparently immortal - judging from Brinn and Cail's tale - and we knew he took his post during Berek's time). We didn't know he was of the Insequent, or that he had been mentor to Berek, but then again, back then we had no idea what ak-Haru was at all, nor what the source of his power was. We could speculate it was an Elohim, or a "super-Haruchai", but we had no clue about it. Now we simply have learned who Kenaustin Ardenol truly was - and where his power came from (a melding of the Theomach's power with the power of the Elohim guardian he defeated).

So in short, even if the word "Insequent" never popped up in the SC, we had clues to their existance - or at least the Theomach's...
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2007 3:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I disagree with your analysis w.r.t the Harrow, Xar. He wanted white gold, and was willing to steal it. If he was around during the First or Second Chronicles, it's hard to imagine why he wasn't angling for the ring. Or some other Insequent.

With respect to the Theomach, you are correct, but the problem is, why didn't other Insequent come and work with other Lords?

With respect to the Mahdoubt, it seems clinched to me that the Haruchai knew she was Insequent and let her remain for that reason. It explains why they tolerated but did not question a being of her stature living in Revelstone. The Haruchai definitely noticed her. They just didn't say anything.

The question is not why did those Insequent go unnoticed. The question is, why weren't there any others such that they would eventually have had to have been noticed?
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2007 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wayfriend wrote:
I disagree with your analysis w.r.t the Harrow, Xar. He wanted white gold, and was willing to steal it. If he was around during the First or Second Chronicles, it's hard to imagine why he wasn't angling for the ring. Or some other Insequent.


Keep in mind that Covenant is not Linden... and we don't know if the power the Harrow had over Linden's soul could also be used on Covenant. For starters, the relationship with white gold was much stronger in Covenant's case - it might even have refused to work at all for the Harrow, if he had stolen it from Covenant. Besides, as I said before, I doubt the Insequent have a lifespan that covers millennia; the Harrow might not have been born during the First Chronicles, and for all we know he could have been an infant during the Second Chronicles.

Wayfriend wrote:
With respect to the Theomach, you are correct, but the problem is, why didn't other Insequent come and work with other Lords?


I could counter - "why should they?" If each Insequent has a different brand of lore, it makes sense that not all of them would be willing or capable of helping the Lords. And many of them might not even have been interested in helping the Lords at all, at least without recompense. The Insequent strike me as a group of very narrow-minded people - each follows their own pursuit, and very often pay little to no attention to everything else. See what Roger said about the Theomach being less likely to notice the "blinking" through Garroting Deep after the Insequent got to where he wanted to go...

Wayfriend wrote:
With respect to the Mahdoubt, it seems clinched to me that the Haruchai knew she was Insequent and let her remain for that reason. It explains why they tolerated but did not question a being of her stature living in Revelstone. The Haruchai definitely noticed her. They just didn't say anything.

The question is not why did those Insequent go unnoticed. The question is, why weren't there any others such that they would eventually have had to have been noticed?


How many Unfettered did we meet during the Chronicles? Just a handful, and yet, from what Atiaran used to say, there should have been many others. It's a similar thing for the Insequent - they might not bother with the Land at all unless it held something that interested them, such as an addition to their specific lore, or threatened them, like the destruction of Time.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2007 5:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm rereading TPTP right now for that part with the Unfettered One in Morinmoss... she just seemed too much like the Mahdoubt. SRD might not have thought of the Unfettered when he wrote the 1st chronicles, but he might have been thinking of the Unfettered when he wrote the Insequent into the last.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2007 6:04 pm    Post subject: Insequent and history Reply with quote

Like the rest of you I have found things in the Last Chronicles that I enjoy as well as things that seem too convenient. That aside, one poster asked something about 'why haven't we seen the Inseqent before now?' Maybe the answer is as simple as "It has never been the right time until now." It may also have something to do with Lord Foul. Surely someone as powerful as Foul would be aware of the Insequent. Maybe some of his whisperings have been directed that way.

Add to this the idea that all of the Chronicles seem to be part of a progression in the history of the Land. First Chronicles: Teach the lords despite and despair to make the summoning of white gold desirable. Second Chronicles: Attack the earth by using Earthpower to create the Sunbane to be so powerful that defeating it would rouse the worm and/or break the Arch. Last Chronicles: Everything is in place to break the arch. It has been going this way since TC's first summoning to the Land. Somehow this is mixed in the 'necessity of freedom,' but I can't see how just yet.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2007 6:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As far as the Mahdoubt being the Morinmoss healer - this idea has been brought up since Runes came out. However, the healer had two brown eyes, while the Mahdoubt had one purple and one orange. I'm satisfied that these are merely two characters who both happen to be old, ugly women, and there's nothing more to it.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2007 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wayfriend wrote:
As far as the Mahdoubt being the Morinmoss healer - this idea has been brought up since Runes came out. However, the healer had two brown eyes, while the Mahdoubt had one purple and one orange. I'm satisfied that these are merely two characters who both happen to be old, ugly women, and there's nothing more to it.


Hey what do you mean the Mahdoubt was an old ugly woman!!! She could have been a raving beauty during her first 2000 years!!! Razz Laughing
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2007 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wayfriend wrote:
As far as the Mahdoubt being the Morinmoss healer - this idea has been brought up since Runes came out. However, the healer had two brown eyes, while the Mahdoubt had one purple and one orange. I'm satisfied that these are merely two characters who both happen to be old, ugly women, and there's nothing more to it.


I happen to think she was beautiful on the inside. <sniff> Very Happy
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2007 8:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wayfriend wrote:
As far as the Mahdoubt being the Morinmoss healer - this idea has been brought up since Runes came out. However, the healer had two brown eyes, while the Mahdoubt had one purple and one orange. I'm satisfied that these are merely two characters who both happen to be old, ugly women, and there's nothing more to it.


Agree. Also, the Healer was not just some random character that "popped up" to heal Covenant. She was known to the people of Mithil Stonedown during the time before LFB but had disappeared (presumably moved to Morinmoss.)
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

@ anyone who has mentioned 'deus ex machina' - please look it up, and you'll see why The Insequent are definitely not this. Please, do this for me. They're not 'deus ex machina-esque' or 'deus ex machina-ish'. That's like being dead-ish.

The Elohim were mentioned in the 1st Chronicles indeed - but if I recall correctly as a throwaway comment here and there. You know, one of those meaningless names fantasy authors throw into the mix here and there to enrich the flavour of the whole. I'm absolutely certain SRD had no image of the Elohim beyond their name and the fact that they were a 'faery' people. Same goes for the Braithair.

Now you have The Insequent. It's no different at all. And in a similar fashion, SRD has taken one of the names added for flavour in the 2nd Chronicles and given it meaning. It's that simple, really. This happens all over the place in fantasy fiction, even in LoTR, when Bilbo's ring eventually got revised and became the One Ring.
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2007 2:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, khalgregar ... but such things can be done well or done badly.

WGW might have ended by, on the last page, having twelve dozen Insequent jump out from behind a rock and hogpile on Lord Foul, rendering him impotent with bad singing and tickling.

That fits the bill of introducing a new element. But it would not be done well.
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2007 4:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's another way to introduce the Insequent that would've driven us crazy with suspense but would have eliminated all possibility of deus ex machina: In ROTE, when Linden meets The Mahdoubt and asks Galt about her, Galt could have simply said "She is one of The Insequent." We would've banged our collective heads against the wall for 3 years wondering what that meant, but then in FR when all is revealed about them we wouldn't complain about it.
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2007 4:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very Happy

Or if Kasreyn had simply been called "The Kemper". Very Happy
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
As far as the Mahdoubt being the Morinmoss healer - this idea has been brought up since Runes came out. However, the healer had two brown eyes, while the Mahdoubt had one purple and one orange. I'm satisfied that these are merely two characters who both happen to be old, ugly women, and there's nothing more to it.


Your knowledge of the eye color of this Unfettered woman surpasses me, Wayfriend! However, SRD could surely account for this if he chooses (or has already chosen) to re-use this character and make her the Mahdoubt. Or...?

Also, the Theomach...What's the deal with this guy? He, like the Harrow and the Mahdoubt, is quite active in FR as far as interacting with people of the Land. What was his motivation in the first place to go and defeat the Elohim that guarded the One Tree? Was he just trying to prove Insequent superiority over the Elohim? Or did he have a particular fondness for this tree, and felt that leaving it to be guarded by a stupid Elohim was unacceptable? Or, did he need to get that Elohim out of the way so he could take Berek to the tree so he could make the staff? Would the Elohim guardian have allowed Berek to approach and take part of the tree to harness and focus Earthpower?

And how long ago did that happen? How long was the Theomach the guardian before Brinn took his place? It had to have been quite a long time. I feel that there's some relationship with the Theomach and this particular Elohim that will be fleshed out before this is all said and done. It might help explain why these two races seem to have such disdain for one another.
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

there is no problem with the Insequent introduction for me. i see two ways they could be "fit" into the series:

1. they are a new plot device to "explain" things and introduce new interesting characters. having the same races (giants, elohim, haruchai, et. al.) is kind of boring.

2. they were there but, never recognized (or forgotten). although the Haruchai were aware of the Vizard and the Theomach, how would they know the Mahdoubt was another Insequent? is there some obvious feature that makes an Insequent recognizable? or are they recognized only after they express themselves thru their power?

for me, the 1st theory is more believable. SRD created the Insequent for the Final Chronicles more for literary purposes than for Canonical correctness.

--
i still wonder if the Theomach's goal is the resolution of Lord Foul.

--
the conflict between the Elohim and the Insequent seem to be an even easier one to explain. the Elohim have always been an arrogant/self-absorbed race - they are an answer unto themselves. the Insequent seem to seek mastery (and answers) outside of themselves and are almost (with the Theomach being an exception) as powerful as the Elohim. that they find the other race anathema seem quite natural.
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 3:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Theomach wrote:
Quote:
although the Haruchai were aware of the Vizard and the Theomach, how would they know the Mahdoubt was another Insequent? is there some obvious feature that makes an Insequent recognizable?


Or do the Haruchai have some means of discerning an Insequent from just some mangy old hag via their mental communication?

Quote:
the conflict between the Elohim and the Insequent seem to be an even easier one to explain. the Elohim have always been an arrogant/self-absorbed race - they are an answer unto themselves. the Insequent seem to seek mastery (and answers) outside of themselves and are almost (with the Theomach being an exception) as powerful as the Elohim. that they find the other race anathema seem quite natural.


I definitely get all that, but it doesn't strike me as being enough of an explanation. SRD seems to like his explanations of things to have a hard reality in the Land. He is a fantacisy after all. I just think that there is something between this Theomach guy and the Elohim who was guarding the One Tree. Time, and two more books will tell...
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Both Galt and Stave lied to Linden about The Mahdoubt at the end of ROTE.

I'm beginning to think that SRD made up the Insequent just prior to FR.
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wouldn't go that far. I don't think SRD can revise his story that much after he starts it, given that he works backwards from the end.

I think that they were planned, but reserved for book two. Lord knows there was enough in book one to gape in awe (or, rather, confusion) at.
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2007 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wayfriend wrote:
Yes, khalgregar ... but such things can be done well or done badly.

WGW might have ended by, on the last page, having twelve dozen Insequent jump out from behind a rock and hogpile on Lord Foul, rendering him impotent with bad singing and tickling.

That fits the bill of introducing a new element. But it would not be done well.


I do think that the absence of any mention of the Insequent in RoTE is 'not handling it well'. It really does give the impression that they were created in SRD's mind between RoTE and FR. Perhaps his vision for this series was less fleshed out than he would have had us think Smile

That said, I've thoroughly enjoyed the Insequent in FR.
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2007 11:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just want to throw another idea into the mix: There were a lot of unknowns in this series: who was Kenaustin, were Berek learned of the One Tree, that sort of thing. It's possible SRD (between TRoE and FR) decided to tie this stuff together.
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