Malazan Empire: Re: ST & Cotillion's Revenge - Malazan Empire

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Re: ST & Cotillion's Revenge I don't really know where to put this.

#1 User is offline   Pearls 

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 05:31 AM

So I was reading this thread:

http://forum.malazan...-plan-spoilers/

which primarily has to do with the motivations of why ST and Cotillion felt the need to, uh, unleash the Hounds in the very beginning of GoTM. Things are kind of speculated that it's revenge. Later in the thread, D'rek quotes Steven Erikson and he justifies this as the two being new to being Ascendants, and being somewhat miffed by Laseen's betrayal/assassination.

Okay.

But when I read NoK, it very, very, extra super heavily seems like they kinda of *wanted* Laseen to kill them, so they could use their kind of deadness to enter the Deadhouse. I mean, after all, they had been gone so long, and Laseen was trying to kill them in part because they'd been away exploring the Azath for so long, that someone needed to rule the empire. Or at least that's how I interpreted what happened there. Kind of. I don't know, this is a cry for help.

It seems to me that if they wanted to die, so they could ascend, then there's no real point of revenge. If anything, the hound shore scene was more just playful poke in Laseen's eye or something. Yes, I'm probably getting hung up on a weird detail here, yes GotM was a weird book with weird motivations for people that change, yes Esslemont maybe didn't compare notes with Erikson as well as he could've during NoK. I'm just curious what all you clever folk's take is on this.
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#2 User is offline   worry 

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 05:37 AM

They wanted to ascend, through death if necessary, and also they hate Laseen for betraying them. I don't consider these things mutually exclusive. Laseen certainly didn't know she was being manipulated at this point; her betrayal was genuine.
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#3 User is offline   Studious Lock 

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 05:52 AM

Worry's got it. They wanted to ascend but she still betrayed them, which was always gonna piss them off.

EDIT: Plus, they may have just done it on principle. So they're not actually THAT pissed off, but still wanted there to be some sort of consequence for betraying them.

This post has been edited by Studious Lock: 17 October 2013 - 05:57 AM

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#4 User is offline   Pearls 

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 02:37 PM

Hmmm. Yeah, this is satisfying. Thank you, all.

I'm not a super stickler for everything being neat in a series, but when it comes to people's emotions and how said emotions are guidelines for character motivations, I tend to want to get that as right as possible. This helps a bunch.

Now to switch book forums and ask more questions!

This post has been edited by Pearls: 17 October 2013 - 02:40 PM

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#5 User is offline   Toc_theyounger 

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Posted 01 October 2015 - 08:18 AM

I always thought that hey felt Laseen never deserved the throne that they had built so painstakingly over so many decades. They don't care if Laseen helped them make that empire, and they feel miffed that their successor should try to take over in so crass a manner, without their permission.
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#6 User is offline   Vengeance 

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Posted 01 October 2015 - 12:41 PM

View Postworry, on 17 October 2013 - 05:37 AM, said:

They wanted to ascend, through death if necessary, and also they hate Laseen for betraying them. I don't consider these things mutually exclusive. Laseen certainly didn't know she was being manipulated at this point; her betrayal was genuine.


They also wanted to send her a message that they were still alive and pissed!
How many fucking people do I have to hammer in order to get that across.
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#7 User is offline   Abyss 

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Posted 02 October 2015 - 03:05 AM

Beg to differ.
To ascend, they needed Laseen to do exactly what she did. They were counting on it.
I realize this flies in the face of the chat at the beginning of GotM, the Itko Kan massacre, and the plan to get Cotillion close to Laseen via Sorry... But just based on what we know as of where NoK stands in the reading order just ahead of TB, there was always more going on. Also, Shadownthrone is insane and Cotillion lets him work his shit out in his own time.
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#8 User is offline   Andorion 

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Posted 02 October 2015 - 03:22 AM

View PostAbyss, on 02 October 2015 - 03:05 AM, said:

Beg to differ.
To ascend, they needed Laseen to do exactly what she did. They were counting on it.
I realize this flies in the face of the chat at the beginning of GotM, the Itko Kan massacre, and the plan to get Cotillion close to Laseen via Sorry... But just based on what we know as of where NoK stands in the reading order just ahead of TB, there was always more going on. Also, Shadownthrone is insane and Cotillion lets him work his shit out in his own time.


Exactly. This is never stated anywhere explicitly but if you take the invertng of the GotM Malazan structure in DG and MoI, combine that with comments dropped by ST and Cot thoughout, then you realise the NoK 'fight' was a con intended to trigger their ascendancy. Why would they want to fight Laseen for the throne anyway? They had passed beyond that and had big plans for the pantheon.
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#9 User is offline   worry 

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Posted 02 October 2015 - 03:26 AM

You can exercise your right to trick someone into assassinating you AND feel angry at them for having the gall to assassinate you. One right does not infringe upon the other.
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#10 User is offline   Andorion 

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Posted 02 October 2015 - 03:38 AM

View Postworry, on 02 October 2015 - 03:26 AM, said:

You can exercise your right to trick someone into assassinating you AND feel angry at them for having the gall to assassinate you. One right does not infringe upon the other.


Precisely! Now you are into Shadowthrones headspace! Just let me know before you unleash the Hounds on an unsuspecting populace, ok?
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#11 User is online   Mentalist 

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Posted 02 October 2015 - 05:02 PM

I'm still doing my re-read, but either in DG or HoC (probably the latter. Or maybe the very end of DG) I got the distinct impression that Cots understood Laseen' motivations for taking charge perfectly (there's only so long you can govern effectively in the name of two absentee rulers who forego the mundane running of the Empire in favour of comprehending how the Cosmos works).

But this clashes rather harshly with the "possess Apsalar for several years and put all other plans on hold to work undercover in Laseen's empire" thing he did. Unless we presume that was just to humour ST.
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View PostJump Around, on 23 October 2011 - 11:04 AM, said:

And I want to state that Ment has out-weaseled me by far in this game.
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#12 User is offline   Andorion 

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Posted 02 October 2015 - 05:18 PM

View PostMentalist, on 02 October 2015 - 05:02 PM, said:

I'm still doing my re-read, but either in DG or HoC (probably the latter. Or maybe the very end of DG) I got the distinct impression that Cots understood Laseen' motivations for taking charge perfectly (there's only so long you can govern effectively in the name of two absentee rulers who forego the mundane running of the Empire in favour of comprehending how the Cosmos works).

But this clashes rather harshly with the "possess Apsalar for several years and put all other plans on hold to work undercover in Laseen's empire" thing he did. Unless we presume that was just to humour ST.


Cotillion: "What did you say? Possess a random civilian child, invest her with Ascendant level abilities and plot revenge against Laseen? But Ammanas, I thought we discussed this...See we don't really hate Laseen, she did us a favour really..What?! Release the Hounds? What in the Abyss for? Because your breakfast was cold? That.... that... thats just like you I suppose....(mutters to himself) I could have been a baker, but noooo, I had to be an assassin...."
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#13 User is online   Mentalist 

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Posted 02 October 2015 - 07:49 PM

To be fair, they released the hounds first, THEN ST name-dropped Cots to Apsalar "leaving him no choice" but to possess her. Or kill her.

I have no problems getting into ST's headspace (he's crazy, so it's easy), but Cots sometimes baffles me. And since he's my favourite "high-power" char, I'd prefer to understand him.
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View PostJump Around, on 23 October 2011 - 11:04 AM, said:

And I want to state that Ment has out-weaseled me by far in this game.
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Posted 02 October 2015 - 11:51 PM

Oh cmon... Who wouldn't want to be a teenaged girl for a few years?
What?
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#15 User is offline   Kanese S's 

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Posted 28 December 2015 - 09:24 AM

View PostAbyss, on 02 October 2015 - 03:05 AM, said:

Beg to differ.
To ascend, they needed Laseen to do exactly what she did. They were counting on it.
I realize this flies in the face of the chat at the beginning of GotM, the Itko Kan massacre, and the plan to get Cotillion close to Laseen via Sorry... But just based on what we know as of where NoK stands in the reading order just ahead of TB, there was always more going on. Also, Shadownthrone is insane and Cotillion lets him work his shit out in his own time.


They still may have been a bit annoyed at just how easy she apparently found it to betray them.
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#16 User is offline   the broken 

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Posted 10 May 2016 - 11:33 AM

Is it possible that what they actually intended was to kill Laseen and disappear, leaving Whiskeyjack in charge of the Empire, but Laseen's guards were more capable than expected, and they had to flee or die?
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#17 User is offline   Abyss 

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Posted 10 May 2016 - 03:47 PM

View PostKanese S, on 28 December 2015 - 09:24 AM, said:

View PostAbyss, on 02 October 2015 - 03:05 AM, said:

Beg to differ.
To ascend, they needed Laseen to do exactly what she did. They were counting on it.
I realize this flies in the face of the chat at the beginning of GotM, the Itko Kan massacre, and the plan to get Cotillion close to Laseen via Sorry... But just based on what we know as of where NoK stands in the reading order just ahead of TB, there was always more going on. Also, Shadownthrone is insane and Cotillion lets him work his shit out in his own time.


They still may have been a bit annoyed at just how easy she apparently found it to betray them.


They may have hoped she would just bear witness to their fake deaths and not try as hard or effectively as she did to take them out.
Bad move, because as far as she knew, they were genuinely returning to take back the Empire, and she had no intention of giving up power when the Empire had changed since they left. They didn't know that, probably didn't expect it even.

View Postthe broken, on 10 May 2016 - 11:33 AM, said:

Is it possible that what they actually intended was to kill Laseen and disappear, leaving Whiskeyjack in charge of the Empire, but Laseen's guards were more capable than expected, and they had to flee or die?


I think Laseen was always supposed to be left in charge, but she was supposed to have the Old Guard around her to help. That didn't work out so good.

But their death, faked or otherwise, was an essential part of the ascension.
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#18 User is offline   Nevyn 

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Posted 10 May 2016 - 03:53 PM

First, a basic issue. Even if they needed Laseen to kill them, she didn't know that. So she had bad intent towards them, and even if they took advantage they don't have to like it.


Beyond that, though, you need to go earlier. Was Laseen killing them always the plan, or did that become the plan because she had taken over and was clearly preparing to deal with them anyway?


As the series progresses from GotM, everyone's motives for even early moves become more complicated in retrospect. But it is not hard to see ST and Cots being bitter.
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#19 User is offline   Axey 

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 08:48 AM

I am not sure how amend a post for spoilers and have been unable to find this in the help section so please amend if needed admins.

I like it how Dancer states to Temper that they didnt "want such an unwielding entity. A kingdom, an empire. These are just symbols. Kellanved and me see much further. We've always been after greater things". However, I think their reasons for letting loose the hounds in GOTM was the fact Laseen had the foresight and power to avoid their trap in Mock's Hold and frankly made them look foolish. Arrogance is the key here.
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#20 User is offline   Kanese S's 

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 06:17 PM

View PostAxey, on 14 May 2016 - 08:48 AM, said:

I am not sure how amend a post for spoilers and have been unable to find this in the help section so please amend if needed admins.

I like it how Dancer states to Temper that they didnt "want such an unwielding entity. A kingdom, an empire. These are just symbols. Kellanved and me see much further. We've always been after greater things". However, I think their reasons for letting loose the hounds in GOTM was the fact Laseen had the foresight and power to avoid their trap in Mock's Hold and frankly made them look foolish. Arrogance is the key here.


[ spoiler ] and [ / spoiler ] (except without the spaces)

I think it stung them that she was so ready to betray them and take them out. Also they probably saw literally filling the room with otataral dust as a cheap, dirty trick.
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