We are currently seeking new theories to expand this section of the site.
Why bother? - your theory will more than likely be referred to in future discussions, when a similar topic arises. - you will get guild points (10 points per theory; maximum of 50 points per guild competition). - it'll challenge and refine your own theorising abilities.
To submit a theory, please: 1. Write it up in its entirety. 2. Refine; - if it hasn't already been discussed - post it on the boards. Get feedback, and add to your theory based on this feedback. Perhaps even mention that you're hoping to submit it to the archives; everyone on the boards is happy to help. - make sure your quotes are properly referenced, to either the book/s (page numbers and edition), or the member who said it, so anyone wanting to discuss your theory will have the correct references. - spell and grammar check your theory. English, please, NOT txt/chat talk 3. Finally, submit it in this thread. That is, the completed theory, as you would like it to appear in the archives.
So get writing and have your theory take its proud place in the Obernewtyn.net Archives already!!
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What about Legendsong and other IC books / another category? Easy! We'll create the categories as the theories are submitted.
Where can I go for help with writing my theory? - The theories message board (this board!) - existing threads, or start your own! - The books themselves (for quotes) - The Obernet Encyclopaedia
IC has given us several criteria for the Destroyer; and these have led me to believe that Rushton is the Destroyer. We know that:
The Destroyer isn’t necessarily Ariel It isn’t Jes or Swallow either, but Swallow is the SORT of person she would guess if she were in our positions It's someone not obvious at first, but who will seem obvious once revealed The Destroyer doesn’t know what he’s going to do, and what happens in the end is an accident- as an inherently good character, we know that Rushton would never deliberately seek out and use the weapon machines, and because Elspeth hasn’t told him anything, he doesn’t know anything about her quest. The Destroyer isn’t necessarily evil- Rushton is always portrayed as a protagonist- he is the one who is responsible for turning Obernewtyn from a prison to a haven for misfits, but he also never quite fits in at Obernewtyn.
I also found several of my own clues from the books. A catalyst is usually required to bring out misfit talents: so when Ariel kidnapped Rushton, he could have been trying to bring out Rushton’s latent talents. We know that Ariel is the H’rakya, the bringer of destruction, so it would make sense that he knows who the Destroyer is. And as for his torturing Rushton; Ariel must have had a bigger reason than just to affect Elspeth. While he may be an evil, sadistic character, there is always a reason behind what Ariel does, and hurting Elspeth isn’t a big enough reason. We also know that Ariel tried to turn Rushton against Elspeth, and almost succeeded. Again, hurting Elspeth isn’t a big enough reason for this; but if Rushton was the destroyer, then Ariel may have been trying to turn him against Elspeth so that Rushton would have no problems with becoming the Destroyer and hurting Elspeth should he need to. Rushton is Elspeth’s love interest, practically the second most important character. It is typical of writers to make the villain someone very close to the hero, as it always manages to shock the readers- and IC keeps telling us that the end will surprise everyone. Also, IC makes a point of bringing up Rushton’s latent powers- this could mean they play an important part later, undoubtedly in Elspeth’s quest. The antagonist is almost always someone who’s been around since the beginning- and Rushton has been there since book one, and has played a major part in every book since. Rushton and Elspeth have a rather tumultuous relationship- they seem drawn to each other, appear to love each other, and yet are constantly arguing. This could be because as the Seeker and the Destroyer, they are subconsciously drawn to each other, but as enemies, they cannot be totally comfortable around each other. Rushton’s family and ancestors have always been a major part of the books- Hannah Seraphim started the Reichler Clinic and was a friend of Cassy's, Jacob Seraphim first built Obernewtyn, and one of them (feel free to correct me, I don't have access to my O-Chron books =[ ) disappeared into the mountains, where Elspeth will have to follow one day. Every Seraphim that is mention has played an important part in Elspeth's quests, and so Rushton must too.
I haven't had a chance to see if IC has given us any clues about Salamander's identity outside of the books but it seems to be a fairly popular theory.
To try to avoid confusion, I have used "he" wherever I am talking about Salamander, and "she" when talking about Seresh.
There is much debate by characters in the Obernewtyn series as to the real identity of the slave trader, Salamander. Although it is not mentioned as a possibility by the characters in the book, I believe that Salamander is really Seresh, the twin sister of the Sadorian tribeswoman Jakoby. She is first introduced in TSK and most of my evidence comes from this book.
We have not yet actually met Seresh, but heard about her in TSK from her twin sister, Jakoby. Due to the Sadorian practice of submerging pregnant women in the mildly tainted isis pools, Seresh was born with a deformed jaw. The two girls grew up with their mother away from the rest of the tribes until they were five, when her mother was forced to send Seresh to the Earthtemple as a novice. She was unhappy with this life and, after a few years, ran away and has not been seen since.
The main piece of evidence suggesting that Seresh may be Salamander comes from the rule of books: authors don’t include characters and information unless it is relevant. Although Seresh’s history explains Jakoby’s attitude towards the immersion practice, there is too much information about her for not to pop up later in the series. Supporting this is the fact that a kasanda told Jakoby Seresh had survived.
A kasanda summoned me and told me that Seresh had not died but had stolen coin and escaped upon a ship… The overguardian had dreamed it and dreamed that I must be told. – Jakoby, TSK, pg 954
IC has confirmed tis and said that she will become an important character.
Another indication as to the identity of Salamander is that, in all of their speculations, IC allows her characters to assume that he is male, even though there is no evidence to prove this. This suggests that he may, in fact, be female. This is particularly likely given IC's tendancy for strong-willed female characters.
Evidence revealed by characters in TSK eliminates several previously popular Salamander candidates. Daffyd discovering that he has dark, Sadorian coloured, skin, immediately discounts Ariel, leaving us with a Sadorian (male or female), or a Gadfian from the LotRQ. This took some time to discover as Salamander is fanatical about secrecy. To this end, he keeps his face and body covered at all times and uses a spokesperson for issuing orders. This would have the double advantage of hiding Seresh’s deformed jaw and the fact that she is female. It is also mentioned that the wraps covering his face are very similar to those used by Sadorians in the deep desert.
His head was entirely covered in a loose black cloth similar to that worm by the nomadic Sadorians when they travelled across the blazing white heart of their desert land, only he also wore black bandages about his face, concealing all but fierce yellow eyes. – TSK, pg 270
The yellow eyes are also a hint as they appear to be unique to Sadorians in general and Jakoby in particular.
Salamander is famed for his sea navigation skills and open water sailing. Seresh is in the best position to learn these skills. All Sadorian children are taught to sail from a young age. Although Sadorian sailing is predominately coastal, Seresh was adventurous as a child and often sailed out further than others.
It has always been the Sadorian custom to remain in sight of land when we take our greatships to sea. Indeed we have gone vast distances in that way, but even as children being trained, my sister and I were wont to venture further out from shore in the little children’s coracles made for us by our mother that she liked; my sister out of natural adventureness, and me for love of her. – Jakoby, TSK, pg 81
The Sadorians also have maps showing LotRQ, and may have records of open sea sailing methods from when the captured Gadfian slaver taught them seacraft to rescue their stolen women. His ship also closely resembles the Sadorian spicewood ships.
Another indication that salamander is Seresh comes in the form of his relationship with Ariel. We know that they first met each other when Ariel sold the survivors of Henry Druid’s camp, and that they have worked together closely since. I believe that they may have had a closer than business relationship and that the expensive, Sadorian-style clothes and jewellery found in Arial’s house on Norse Isle are Seresh’s. This would fit not only with Salamander’s wealth and Seresh’s Sadorian origins, but also with the fact that she liked beautiful clothes and things as a child.
Seresh loved pretty things. She would dress in my mother’s silks and jewels and dance with such grace it was pure beauty, and neither of us new that she was hideous to behold. – Jakoby, TSK, pg 954
Two of the main questions surrounding Salamander, other than his true identity, are why he enslaves people and why he avoids the Sadorian ships. The obvious answer to the second question is that he knows that
Sadorians despise slavers even more than murderers. – Elspeth, TSK, pg 977
and that if he was found
that he would be despised as a thief of freedom and captured and sentenced to the desert walk. – Elspeth, TSK, pg 977
A less obvious motive may be that Seresh is subconsciously afraid of being in the position where she is enslaving her sister, whom she still loves.
I believe that her wish to enslave and sell people, despite having already amassed huge wealth, is a form of revenge. She knows the Sadorian attitude to slavery and is flaunting the rules of the Earthtemple whom she sees as having stolen her freedom as a child.
The woman mentioned as being with Salamander when he is first introduced, is important only as being his mouthpiece. This is due to the fact that his true identity is unlikely to have been decided at that time.
Bibliophile: *Introduces herself to * I'd like to submit the first Legendsong theory please.
Portal Song Prophesy
I’ve been looking at the portal song and think it could give quite a few hints as to how the Unraveller prophecy will be fulfilled. Although seemingly fulfilled by their crossing over to Keltor, I feel that it has greater significance. It is possible it is even a ‘lost’ part of the Ledgendsong itself. When night falls And the darksong calls, Will you hear? Will you tread the moonpath? Will you sing the lost soul home?
When night falls
There are several ways to interpret this.
1) Literally; the Unraveller starting her quest at dusk. If this is the case, it is likely that when she succeeds the Unykorn will return with the dawn.
2) The night could be a metaphor for the effects of Chaos. This could either refer to the fact that only when hope seems gone does the Unraveller arrive; or that Chaos will appear to triumph over the Unraveller, to be defeated at the last moment.
3) It is also possible that it refers to Ember’s blindness. At the end of Darksong, Ember is racing to Darkfall to be healed. We know that she will go completely blind shortly before she dies, and that once this happens, her sight can’t be healed. It is possible then, that this line means that Ember will become completely blind before she is healed, and shortly after (or possibly during) her healing fights her battle with the Chaos spirit. It would be appropriate as Lanalor says that Chaos enters your mind through the eyes. Ember being half blind is no longer relevant now that she has been identified as the Unraveller.
And the darksong calls,
There are two main possible meanings for this line, both related.
1) The darksong could be death, similar to the siren call of the mindstream in the Obernewtyn Chronicles. If she gets to Signe too late, it is possible that she is on the point of dying and must choose whether to resist death and fulfil her quest as the Unraveller, or surrender.
2) It could also refer to the indifference maintained by Dark Ember. Once again, if something happens to prevent or delay her healing, it is possible that Ember will succumb to fear and let Dark Ember and Chaos take control again.
Will you hear?
Although seemingly obvious, the answer to this can be either positive or negative depending on what it is referring to.
1) This line is most likely linked to the previous line as Ember’s choice to surrender to death/Chaos, or resist. In this case, the answer is that she should not hear.
2) In a similar way, it could also be asking if she will accept her role as the Unraveller. This combines crossing over to Keltor, resisting dark Ember, announcing her identity and actually freeing the Unykorn. Under this interpretation, she should hear.
Will you tread the moonpath?
Once again, there are two main interpretations for this, depending on how literal it is.
1) In a similar way to the moon leading the way and opening the portal in our world, it is possible that a rare double alignment of Keltor’s two moons is what allows Ember to find the Unykorn. They could either lead the way to a physical location where the prison is weaker, or, most likely, help guide her through the Void.
2) Less literally, it could also refer to Ember choosing to become soulweaver. As part of this, she would open her spirit eyes, negating her full blindness (see 1,3) and allowing her to see the truth during her battle with the Chaos spirit. She would also gain the blue tattoos, which would be in the shape of crescent moons, hence following the path of the moons.
Will you sing the lost soul home?
This line can probably be taken fairly literally.
1) Most likely, it requires Ember’s singing to break the prison and call the Unykorn. Given the frequency and seeming irrelevance, it is possible that this will occur in the clearing of her dream. In the dream Shenavyre or herself wanders around singing, watched by the manbeast and waiting for the Unykorn. The dream always ends before she sees the Unykorn. Although the clearing could be a physical location, it is more probable that it is one of the ‘bubbles’ within the Void.
2) It is also possible that it simply refers to the way that movement while segueing can be controled with music. In this way, Ember would quite literally sing to guide herself and the Unykorn back through the Void.
From this, a theory can be formed as to the events of the climax. Although in many cases it is possible that all of the interpretations are correct, I believe that the following combination is most likely.
Ember goes completely blind, thereby preventing the Chaos spirit from influencing her when she segues, and possibly ridding herself of Dark Ember. By the time Signe is able to heal her, she is too far gone to be saved without her helping and resisting the call of death. Ember chooses to live and fulfil her destiny as the Unraveller. To do this, she undergoes the Darkfall process to open her spirit eyes so she can know the truth when seguing. As a full soulweaver, she is tattooed with crescent moons and later has Glynn as her myrmidon. She then segues to find the Unykorn and ends up in the clearing of her dream. She sings the song from her dream and, perhaps with a last-minute hitch, successfully frees the Unykorn.
It is my belief the Ember is the Unraveller as the Legendsong signs all point toward her but that the Soulsaver is a different person, Glynn!
At the end of Darkfall Glynn links with the mother fienna to save her young and while doing so gives Glynn powers no other person on Keltor has. In particular the power to link with the "soul spark." Key word here soul
In Darksong, we learn the Glynn has been hidden from the Chaos spirit and 'all the wise' by the watcher. Why bother to shield her if she is unimportant?
At the end of Darksong, the watcher speculates between Ember and Glynn and how both are destined to achieve something important
Some of the characters meation that the Legendsong refersn to gold hair but Ember has red hair
Ember is destined to free the Unykorn but Glynn is meant to save it