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Assail speculation Rate Topic: ***** 1 Votes

#1 User is offline   champ 

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Posted 16 November 2010 - 10:23 PM

I couldn't see any threads specifically for Assail and since there is no future book forum for the novel, figured i would post here...

Hopefully with the not-soon-enough release of SW we will at least get some more info on this damned continent (sub-continent??) but just wondered if anyone has any wild speculation with what's going on... Also putting together a couple of things we know about Assail...

I am mainly posting this because of two throw away comments I picked up whilst rereading RotCG

Stoop has just revealed himself to Kyle at the Sanctuary of Burn...

Quote

..."I'm with you, lad."
Everyone shoved their weapons away, "With me?"
"I'll be taggin' along with you for a time. K'azz's dispensation."
"Really? Just as those other Brethren come to K'azz?"
"Yeah - for a while. Till the vow pulls me back, I s'pose."
"Just like back home," Badlands said aside to Coots, who glared for silence.
"So, why can we see and hear you then?" Stalker demanded, ever sceptical.
A translucent shrug. "I guess because you was Guardsmen for a time."
"So no one else would see or hear you?" Badlands asked.
"I dunno. I ain't no mage. Unless they're priests o' Hood or mages, I s'pose.
"Too much like back home," Badlands commented behind a raised hand.
"Shut it," Coots answered, and he shook himself, brushing dust from this thick mane of hair...


Got me thinking on Assail and my sum conclusion... what the hell?

The first underline threw me, at first I thought Assail may be like Lether and not have a Hold of Death and that's why spirits could be seen? That was quashed a couple of lines later as they're not exactly going to have priests of Hood and yet no Hold of Death...

So I was stumped as to what he could be referring to...A load of mages in Assail, well that would be obvious? Ghosts roaming freely? Someone will be better able to interpret them... hopefully?

We also know the T'lan Imass got dicked out there by a "Human Tyrant"

Quote

Our losses: twenty-nine thousand eight hundred and fourteen Kerluhm. Twenty-two thousand two hundred Ifayle. Eight months of battle. We have lost this war.’


Scary huh?

On top of that we have the loss of Cal-Brinn of the Crimson Guard and his company... With the lucky survival of Iron Bars and his blade...

Quote

"And worst of all, he was worried: would further men then be sent to investigate that end? Cal's last instructions argued flat against that. And Bars agreed."


Couple other points picked up from RotCG - Stalkers musings...

Quote

"You asked about Badlands and Coots. Well, we are related. You might say brothers. We're all of the Lost back where we come from. Well, back there, it's just the same. Stuck in the past..."


Hmmm... What else:

- We also know that magic is referred to as "Holds" on Assail, not "Warrens."
- Various competing factions on Assail
- Silverfox is heading that way

Sure there is loads more I've missed but at least it's a start...

So, has anyone got any wild theories on Assail, anymore facts to add?

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#2 User is offline   Abyss 

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Posted 16 November 2010 - 10:51 PM

Your Quote Fu is strong.

Here's one i've always wondered about...TB, Cotillion is raging at the Imass for the lack of more support to defend the First Throne...

Quote

"To Hood with Assail! ...There is nothing worth fighting for on that miserable nightmare of a continent! Don't you see? Among the Tyrants there it is nothing but a game!"



And then in TtH there is Spinnock's brief report to Rake regarding Assail...

Quote

..on my last day, a league from the sea...I lost count of those i killed to reach that desolate strand...the very bay was crimson.


...and later Endest's conversation with Brood which suggests that the Jaghut Tyrants and Forkrul Assail had a nice little war going on...

Quote

"Was there war?"
"Was?"
"Gods below Caladan, no war can last that long."
"It can, when the face of the army is without relevance."
"Where?"
"Far away from here."


So, my guess... once upon a time Jaghut Tyrants went to war with Forkul Assail, and that war encompassed an entire continent of peoples. Jaghut's can jump souls. FA's are nearly immortal, and both have access to some powerful mojo. End result: armies of insane fanatics who keep fighting as ghosts even after they die, and who can get new bodies, all run by tyrants who no longer care how they win or lose or who suffers in the deal so long as the game continues. And something like an invading army of Crimson Guard, Tlan Imass or an Andii agent is just an interesting distraction.

Supposedly ICE's fifth novel, after the Darujhistan novel that's supposed to follow SW, will address Assail.

- Abyss, can't wait to find out.
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#3 User is offline   WhiskeyJackDaniels 

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Posted 17 November 2010 - 12:10 AM

One observation and one question.

The implications of the Brood conversation with Endest never really sat well with me. I mean, yea, it makes sense that armies of Jaghut and Forkrul Assail would be the ones that could take out two full clans of T'lan Imass. BUT I have a hard time believing that clans of T'lan Imass wouldn't be able to recognize that they were being destroyed by armies of Jaghut and FA souls transmigrated into humans, and not just humans.

Also: Stalker, Badlands and Coots were apparently the martial equals of the Avowed. They were humans. For some reason humans that live on Assail have just naturally gained strength, stamina, and skill.

My question is for the OP. When did we learn that they used holds instead of warrens on Assail? It was my understanding that that was unique to the continent of Lether because of Gothos' ritual of preservation.
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#4 User is offline   ShadowRaven 

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Posted 17 November 2010 - 01:06 AM

Considering that more about the Seguleh will also probably be revealed by ICE in the Darujhistan novel, I would assume the peoples on assail have something similar going on that makes them really powerful (the Seguleh are clearly stated to be human after all). This could also explain the three's comments from RotCG mentioned by Champooon: if there is an entire continent filled with superpowered humans, there's bound to be a whole host of mages providing those magical 'roids.

The connection between Assail and Seguleh would not be much of a stretch in the foreshadowing sense either, considering that we are introduced to Mok and co. and then we hear from Lanas Tog that the Kerluhm and Ifayle have been pwned by humans. Also, there is an interesting little tidbit about the weapons impaling Lanas Tog when he is described just before he reveals their losses:

"The T'lann Imass before them was shorter, squatter than Tool. Three black-iron broadswords of unfamiliar style impaled this undead warrior's broad, massive chest, two of them driven in from behind, the other from the T'lan Imass's left. Broken ribs jutted through black, salt-rimed skin. The leather strapping of all three swords handles hung rotted, unravelled strips from the grips' wooden underplates. Wispy remnants of old sorcery flowed fitfully along the pitted blades."

If they are walking around there with magic imbued weapons, I would assume there are a loooot of mages prancing around too.
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#5 User is offline   champ 

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Posted 17 November 2010 - 07:29 AM

View PostWhiskeyJackDaniels, on 17 November 2010 - 12:10 AM, said:

My question is for the OP. When did we learn that they used holds instead of warrens on Assail? It was my understanding that that was unique to the continent of Lether because of Gothos' ritual of preservation.


Not much time so I can only pick this up at the moment... Will get back to the rest when I get to work...

But from RotCG...

Quote

He scowled his disgust. "Shadow Hold, I'd say."
"Shadow Hold? What's that?"
"That's what we call it where we're from. You could call it the Warren of Shadow, or Meanas, or whatever you like. Take your pick - it don't care a whit."


and

Quote

..."What is it?"
"As you said, a path of Wind."
"Like nothing I've never seen," said Stalker. "But I'm new to these Warrens. What I've seen were more like tears, gaps and holes


Which just got me thinking... Could there be a "wound" on Assail like Morn...

This post has been edited by champooon: 17 November 2010 - 07:30 AM

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Posted 17 November 2010 - 03:44 PM

View PostWhiskeyJackDaniels, on 17 November 2010 - 12:10 AM, said:

One observation and one question.

The implications of the Brood conversation with Endest never really sat well with me. I mean, yea, it makes sense that armies of Jaghut and Forkrul Assail would be the ones that could take out two full clans of T'lan Imass. BUT I have a hard time believing that clans of T'lan Imass wouldn't be able to recognize that they were being destroyed by armies of Jaghut and FA souls transmigrated into humans, and not just humans.


But all we really have is Lanas Tog telling envy that they were fighting humans. There wasn't an extended discussion of the who what and how. Tho i admit finding appeal in the notion of a nation of fanatics are so powered up and far gone that it sends human tides of magic armed nutjobs swarming Tlan Imass.

Quote

Also: Stalker, Badlands and Coots were apparently the martial equals of the Avowed. They were humans. For some reason humans that live on Assail have just naturally gained strength, stamina, and skill.



My guess - it's just that nasty a place that you get that way just to survive. The 'Lost Bros' are probably part of a minority of sane humans who aren't caught up in whatever else is going on and were happy to get out when the Guard bailed.


View PostShadowRaven, on 17 November 2010 - 01:06 AM, said:

... if there is an entire continent filled with superpowered humans, there's bound to be a whole host of mages providing those magical 'roids.


They are never described as being on the same level as the Avowed. Just really really tough. So no 'superpowers'.

Quote

... Also, there is an interesting little tidbit about the weapons impaling Lanas Tog when he is described just before he reveals their losses:

"The T'lann Imass before them was shorter, squatter than Tool. Three black-iron broadswords of unfamiliar style impaled this undead warrior's broad, massive chest, two of them driven in from behind, the other from the T'lan Imass's left. Broken ribs jutted through black, salt-rimed skin. The leather strapping of all three swords handles hung rotted, unravelled strips from the grips' wooden underplates. Wispy remnants of old sorcery flowed fitfully along the pitted blades."

If they are walking around there with magic imbued weapons, I would assume there are a loooot of mages prancing around too.


Or an industry dedicated to producing them perhaps.

Quote

Quote

..."What is it?"
"As you said, a path of Wind."
"Like nothing I've never seen," said Stalker. "But I'm new to these Warrens. What I've seen were more like tears, gaps and holes


Which just got me thinking... Could there be a "wound" on Assail like Morn...


I think he's just describing how Hold-powered gates operate, as opposed to the sort of 'slide into another world' thing we've seen with warrens like Meanas, Rashan, Serc and D'riss off the top of my head.

The wound at Morn is a form of gate, but one that was ripped into being by the Matron death spell and left in place.

Someone correct me if i'm wrong, but we never saw Letherii using Hold magic to create gates from point A to point B, did we? Which raises the interesting point that if on Assail they are using Hold magic to get around, that could mean a few nasty things for the state of the conflict there or its impact.
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#7 User is offline   worry 

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Posted 17 November 2010 - 07:12 PM

Indeed, perhaps a continent full of Hairlocks.
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Posted 17 November 2010 - 07:57 PM

I've given up trying to MultiQuote so...

@ Abyss & WJD

Quote

...and later Endest's conversation with Brood which suggests that the Jaghut Tyrants and Forkrul Assail had a nice little war going on...

Quote

"Was there war?"
"Was?"
"Gods below Caladan, no war can last that long."
"It can, when the face of the army is without relevance."
"Where?"
"Far away from here."

So, my guess... once upon a time Jaghut Tyrants went to war with Forkul Assail, and that war encompassed an entire continent of peoples. Jaghut's can jump souls. FA's are nearly immortal, and both have access to some powerful mojo. End result: armies of insane fanatics who keep fighting as ghosts even after they die, and who can get new bodies, all run by tyrants who no longer care how they win or lose or who suffers in the deal so long as the game continues. And something like an invading army of Crimson Guard, Tlan Imass or an Andii agent is just an interesting distraction.

Supposedly ICE's fifth novel, after the Darujhistan novel that's supposed to follow SW, will address Assail.


Quote

Quote

One observation and one question.

The implications of the Brood conversation with Endest never really sat well with me. I mean, yea, it makes sense that armies of Jaghut and Forkrul Assail would be the ones that could take out two full clans of T'lan Imass. BUT I have a hard time believing that clans of T'lan Imass wouldn't be able to recognize that they were being destroyed by armies of Jaghut and FA souls transmigrated into humans, and not just humans.


But all we really have is Lanas Tog telling envy that they were fighting humans. There wasn't an extended discussion of the who what and how. Tho i admit finding appeal in the notion of a nation of fanatics are so powered up and far gone that it sends human tides of magic armed nutjobs swarming Tlan Imass.



Whilst liking the train of thought with regards to the Jaghut...

I find it strangely more appealing if it is a Human creating so much chaos on Assail rather than a Jaghut hiding in a human body ala Pannion Domin, if it turned out to be this I reckon I would claim to be disappointed for all of 1 minute before I actually realise I am reading the Assail novel and forget all about it!

We never hear that the T'lan faced the "Human Tyrant" directly, they could of been facing an army of humans and put two and two together, the Jaghut would go a long way to explain such severe losses though amoungst the T'lan, but then so would an army of the "Lost Boys" with super magic'd weapons!

Why oh why does this novel have to be such a long way away!

Which leads to...

@ ShadowRaven

Quote

"The T'lann Imass before them was shorter, squatter than Tool. Three black-iron broadswords of unfamiliar style impaled this undead warrior's broad, massive chest, two of them driven in from behind, the other from the T'lan Imass's left. Broken ribs jutted through black, salt-rimed skin. The leather strapping of all three swords handles hung rotted, unravelled strips from the grips' wooden underplates. Wispy remnants of old sorcery flowed fitfully along the pitted blades."


Good catch! one of the throw away comments that are easily missed or not put into context! Also we never hear of any other nation using black iron, could it be an offshoot of Letherii blue iron?

@ Abyss

Quote

Quote

..."What is it?"
"As you said, a path of Wind."
"Like nothing I've never seen," said Stalker. "But I'm new to these Warrens. What I've seen were more like tears, gaps and holes

Which just got me thinking... Could there be a "wound" on Assail like Morn...

I think he's just describing how Hold-powered gates operate, as opposed to the sort of 'slide into another world' thing we've seen with warrens like Meanas, Rashan, Serc and D'riss off the top of my head.

The wound at Morn is a form of gate, but one that was ripped into being by the Matron death spell and left in place.


Early morning wild speculation heh! It more backs up that Holds are raw untamed power and Warrens are all finesse!

Quote

Someone correct me if i'm wrong, but we never saw Letherii using Hold magic to create gates from point A to point B, did we? Which raises the interesting point that if on Assail they are using Hold magic to get around, that could mean a few nasty things for the state of the conflict there or its impact.


From my memory no we haven't, when ever we have heard of Letherii using the Holds for communication it has been mind-to-mind, which is mentioned a fair bit!

Scary thought on the level of magic being used there!

This post has been edited by champooon: 17 November 2010 - 07:58 PM

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#9 User is offline   Ulrik 

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Posted 17 November 2010 - 10:30 PM

Alcohol made in my mind picture of HUGE fans that literally scattered whole Imass army...or rather blown...

OK, not funny, but yknow...Im under protection of little scotch humor imp...you shall not pass...I should shut up...
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Posted 18 November 2010 - 09:16 AM

an army of boles!!
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Posted 18 November 2010 - 03:43 PM

View PostTattersail, on 18 November 2010 - 09:16 AM, said:

an army of boles!!


You mean the Mott Irregulars?
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Posted 18 November 2010 - 03:54 PM

View PostWhiskeyJackDaniels, on 18 November 2010 - 03:43 PM, said:

View PostTattersail, on 18 November 2010 - 09:16 AM, said:

an army of boles!!


You mean the Mott Irregulars?


they weren't all Boles though were they? and okay I mean a nation of them. a creation of the Jaghut to destroy FA's and anything else stupid enough to cross thier country. okay it's not true but one could hope.
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Posted 18 November 2010 - 04:14 PM

y'know, that may not be totally off base.

Afai can tell, the Boles are a specific family within the Mott woods peoples/Mott Irregulars, and at some point back in history Jaghut experimented on them and somehow created a 'mutant' human race with the potential to power up when faced with witches, mages or whatever. Point being the Jaghut have shown the ability to upgrade humans, and it appears that Jaghut are or were involved in whatever is happening on Assail, and the Lost Bros suggest the humans there are a bit more than 'normal'...

hmm... could be on to something there...
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#14 User is offline   champ 

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Posted 18 November 2010 - 07:51 PM

View PostAbyss, on 18 November 2010 - 04:14 PM, said:

y'know, that may not be totally off base.

Afai can tell, the Boles are a specific family within the Mott woods peoples/Mott Irregulars, and at some point back in history Jaghut experimented on them and somehow created a 'mutant' human race with the potential to power up when faced with witches, mages or whatever. Point being the Jaghut have shown the ability to upgrade humans, and it appears that Jaghut are or were involved in whatever is happening on Assail, and the Lost Bros suggest the humans there are a bit more than 'normal'...

hmm... could be on to something there...


and that - to me - would fit in nicely with Cots quote of

Quote

"To Hood with Assail! ...There is nothing worth fighting for on that miserable nightmare of a continent! Don't you see? Among the Tyrants there it is nothing but a game!"


you can just imagine it, competing factions trying to go one up on the other... how else could you possibly imagine humans standing any chance of taking out so many t'lan...

jaghutroids... power-up in a pill...

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#15 User is offline   TheSurvivor 

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Posted 28 November 2010 - 07:52 AM

Personally I'm hoping for a human tyrant or several because that just fascinates me more. I mean if it's Jaghut then there's nothing new there. Could be that, to the whole experimentation point, the humans were upgraded and there was a revolt. Dead (or perhaps enslaved?) Jaghut with a mass of humans walking around with some powerade sporting a slightly off-balance mental state. Ah, a wait never seems longer than when you're speculating.
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Posted 28 November 2010 - 04:26 PM

View PostTheSurvivor, on 28 November 2010 - 07:52 AM, said:

Personally I'm hoping for a human tyrant or several because that just fascinates me more. I mean if it's Jaghut then there's nothing new there. Could be that, to the whole experimentation point, the humans were upgraded and there was a revolt. Dead (or perhaps enslaved?) Jaghut with a mass of humans walking around with some powerade sporting a slightly off-balance mental state. Ah, a wait never seems longer than when you're speculating.


Agreed. I'm sure it'll still be interesting if it's a Jaghut tyrant, but it's going to be infinitely more interesting if it's a human one.
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#17 User is offline   mostly.harmless 

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Posted 01 December 2010 - 12:18 AM

Hmm. Currently at work so I can't check the [relevant] book, but I clearly seem to remember that a T'lan Imass somewhere reminisces on how she was fighting one of the human tyrants or kings and that right at that moment they were ordered to retreat.
I can't remember the book but it feels recent, so Iīd go with TtH, DoD or RotCG.
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#18 User is offline   The Seguleh 46th 

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Posted 01 December 2010 - 03:44 AM

View Postmostly.harmless, on 01 December 2010 - 12:18 AM, said:

Hmm. Currently at work so I can't check the [relevant] book, but I clearly seem to remember that a T'lan Imass somewhere reminisces on how she was fighting one of the human tyrants or kings and that right at that moment they were ordered to retreat.
I can't remember the book but it feels recent, so Iīd go with TtH, DoD or RotCG.
Wehehe.


I think its DoD with one of the T'lan Imass talking about getting the closest to The Bearded One (?), possibly wounding him. Red Spires something maybe? Think there is another thead somewhere speculating on that, as i was thinking it was the Three mage-kings of Shal-Morzinn (sp.?), but as far as i recall there hasn't been anything really concrete on who or what they are, or for that matter, who the heck The Bearded One is. Could be wrong though....
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Posted 01 December 2010 - 04:51 AM

View PostThe Seguleh 46th, on 01 December 2010 - 03:44 AM, said:

View Postmostly.harmless, on 01 December 2010 - 12:18 AM, said:

Hmm. Currently at work so I can't check the [relevant] book, but I clearly seem to remember that a T'lan Imass somewhere reminisces on how she was fighting one of the human tyrants or kings and that right at that moment they were ordered to retreat.
I can't remember the book but it feels recent, so Iīd go with TtH, DoD or RotCG.
Wehehe.


I think its DoD with one of the T'lan Imass talking about getting the closest to The Bearded One (?), possibly wounding him. Red Spires something maybe? Think there is another thead somewhere speculating on that, as i was thinking it was the Three mage-kings of Shal-Morzinn (sp.?), but as far as i recall there hasn't been anything really concrete on who or what they are, or for that matter, who the heck The Bearded One is. Could be wrong though....


Ah, I think you're right, some distant bells are ringing.
Shall-Morzinn, not quite the same as Assail, oops.

For some reason this Island/Land/Kingdom/whatever-they-are fascinates me more than Assail. Unless they're the same and this is one of those 'duh' moments where I just like one name and description more than another, although they are just two points of view on the same object/subject.
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Posted 01 December 2010 - 05:06 AM

View Postmostly.harmless, on 01 December 2010 - 04:51 AM, said:

View PostThe Seguleh 46th, on 01 December 2010 - 03:44 AM, said:

View Postmostly.harmless, on 01 December 2010 - 12:18 AM, said:

Hmm. Currently at work so I can't check the [relevant] book, but I clearly seem to remember that a T'lan Imass somewhere reminisces on how she was fighting one of the human tyrants or kings and that right at that moment they were ordered to retreat.
I can't remember the book but it feels recent, so Iīd go with TtH, DoD or RotCG.
Wehehe.


I think its DoD with one of the T'lan Imass talking about getting the closest to The Bearded One (?), possibly wounding him. Red Spires something maybe? Think there is another thead somewhere speculating on that, as i was thinking it was the Three mage-kings of Shal-Morzinn (sp.?), but as far as i recall there hasn't been anything really concrete on who or what they are, or for that matter, who the heck The Bearded One is. Could be wrong though....


Ah, I think you're right, some distant bells are ringing.
Shall-Morzinn, not quite the same as Assail, oops.

For some reason this Island/Land/Kingdom/whatever-they-are fascinates me more than Assail. Unless they're the same and this is one of those 'duh' moments where I just like one name and description more than another, although they are just two points of view on the same object/subject.


Assail and Shal-Morzinn are two different places. And i'm not sure if it really was SM they were talking about (in the battle with the Bearded One and others), although they were in southwestern 7C at that time they were talking about (out in the Jhag Odhan perhaps, IIRC?), so the geography just made me assume it was Shal-Morzinn.

This post has been edited by The Seguleh 46th: 01 December 2010 - 05:08 AM

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