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Monday, February 27, 2012

Test of Metal - The Metal Island: The Last Riddle



This is it. The real confrontation on the metal island.


The Metal Island: The Last Riddle

Nicol Bolas jerked as if he’d been hit by lightning. That insufferable little clot of ghoul turd! He should have killed Tezzeret years ago. The inarguable fact that he, himself, not only had not done anything so prudent as kill the artificer, compounded with the other inarguable fact that he, himself, had actually healed that festering pile of scrapings from a dung beetle’s butt, made at least one of his subminds wonder openly if perhaps Tezzeret had been right about him.

Maybe he was stupid.

(*sigh*)

At least his is a mistake that can be corrected. Nicol Bolas gathers his power and unleashes it upon the man and his infuriating smirk... except he doesn't.

He tries again, and again nothing happens.

Tezzeret lectures the dragon, tells him that they did not have to be enemies, and that his problem is all in his head. Nicol Bolas tells him that he's nothing more than a cockroach, so Tezzeret challenges him to step on him and kill him like a cockroach. Nicol Bolas commands his body to lunge forward and finish him off... but nothing happens.

“I should think you know me as well as any creature in the Multiverse, excepting only Kemuel and Crucius,” Tezzeret said. “What’s my talent? Not superficial, magic and rhabdomancy and artificing. What am I best at? What is my specialty?” 

Bolas opened his mouth for a sarcastic reply, but shut it again without speaking. Shut it with a snap like a dry branch breaking, because he realized he did know Tezzeret’s specialty.
Preparation.

(So what... Tezzeret is the Batman of the Magic multiverse? It's not like Nicol Bolas is known for being simple-minded. He's the all powerful and devious Nicol Bolas! There is no reason he'd be in awe of Tezzeret's "specialty," unless, I suppose, it's due to actually feeling a bit of fear and helplessness because of the current situation. It could very well be that way, but this rubs me the wrong way.)

Tezzeret then continues on with the lecture and explains that he's revealing his complete and absolute control over the dragon in this particular manner for a reason. He reminds him that his last words before implanting the trap into Jace Beleren's words were that he was going to kill Nicol Bolas. Tezzeret then reminds him that he did. Multiple copies of them in fact.

(Oh come on. Tezzeret had no idea back then that he was going to face off against multiple zombie-Bolas' from alternate timelines. He's just twisting around his own prediction to make him seem smarter and more dangerous than he intended at the time.)

The device wasn't implanted in Jace Beleren's head because he thought Jace Beleren was a threat. It was placed there because he that sometime down the road Nicol Bolas would read his mind. And when Bolas did exactly that, his trap was sprung. The device has since moved into Nicol Bolas' head.

And while Tezzeret was busy killing Nicol Bolas after Nicol Bolas, he was also studying the brains of each of those dragons until he figured out the proper pathway for his device to continue traveling down to end with the situation they're in now.

In short, the device removes any motivation the dragon has to kill him. Or any other planeswalker in fact.

With that said though, Tezzeret is quite sure it won't take too long for Bolas to remove it, but it does allow them enough time to have talk.

This situation isn't something he can stand for. Something that clockworking can easily fix... except it can't. Or at least, he can't. Bolas remembers being able to clockwork, but he can't seem to remember how to do it.

“I have come to believe that clockworking in general is a very bad idea. Even in the hands of a well-intentioned mage, it has the intrinsic potential to rend the fabric of the Multiverse—which makes it a particularly bad idea to let you, for example, use it. So you can’t. Possibly forever.”

Bolas could no longer contain his disbelief. “That’s impossible—you can’t just take a power away from me!”

“Yes. The only person who can do that to you is, well … you.”

“What?”

“Jace Beleren wasn’t the only one with a trap in his mind,” Tezzeret said. “This one was a little subtler. I’ve given your clockworking powers into the care of a subpersonality of yours. I based my design on your work. This subpersonality actually understands how dangerous clockworking is, and so he’ll make sure you never do it again. I have given you something more valuable than all the etherium that has ever existed.”

He smiled, and now Bolas did see a trace of that malice that had been formerly absent. Tezzeret said, “I’ve given you a friend.”

(YES! Bye-bye clockworking!)

“Doc,” said Tezzeret, “say hello.”

And Nicol Bolas heard a thinly wiseass human voice buzzing in his left ear. “Hiya! Hey, it’s nice in here! Damn, Nicky, we shoulda got together years ago!”

(No! Doc's not gone!.. I suppose it's still worth the trade-off.)

Nicol Bolas bursts into tears.


...Later...

After Nicol Bolas collects himself, Tezzeret apologizes to the dragon and tells him that he had no intention of humiliating him, and in fact, this whole situation was set up to not do any harm to him at all. Bolas is a bit skeptical, so Tezzeret adds that if he wanted to humiliate him, this whole conversation would have taken place in front of an audience. Tezzeret then reaches out beyond their reality and pulls Jace Beleren back onto the metal island.

“That’s impossible!” 

“Not here.”

“But how—?”
 
“I can think of no reason why I should tell you.”

Bolas then asks Tezzeret what's the point of bring the mindless body of Jace Beleren back to the island. Tezzeret gives the dragon a smile, and lets him know quite clearly that it was Tezzeret himself that mind wiped the telepath as justice for what Jace had earlier done to him.

But... Jace is too valuable to leave this way. Nicol Bolas then assumes that Jace isn't actually dead. The opposite is the truth, however a blue haze comes off of Tezzeret's right arm and the magic streams into Jace's head. Tezzeret tells Bolas that Jace is not dead anymore.

Baltrice and Liliana Vess are pulled back to the island next, and Tezzeret asks Bolas if it's okay if he takes care of some business with the others first. The three of them will be quite unaware of the dragon's presence while it happens.


...After Tezzeret awakens the others...

There's a lot of commotion and confusion, and Baltrice needs to be kept back from killing Liliana Vess. Jace is more focused on what's going on, and what happened to Nicol Bolas.

“It is always safest to assume,” Tezzeret told them gravely, his deadpan unbreakable, “that Nicol Bolas is closer than you think.”

“And what in the hells is up with you?” Beleren demanded. “What is this place? How did you get us away from Bolas? What’s going on?”
Tezzeret favored him with the same smile Bolas had found so infuriating. Beleren didn’t seem to like it any better. “Each of you has been of exceptional assistance to me in recent days. I hope to thank you, and to give each of you a gift. This place is … me. Or I am it. Or I will be, eventually. I did not take you from Bolas. He cast all three of you into the Blind Eternities. I have retrieved you; that’s all. You are, I suppose, salvage. What’s going on is our taking leave of one another. Is that clear enough?”

(Wait... what? This place is Tezzeret? What about Crucius?)

Jace doesn't like the answer, or doesn't like how the answer is given, and decides that as long as Nicol Bolas is gone, it's time to take on Tezzeret. However this time it's Baltrice that holds him back and gives him the warning that he doesn't understand how much Tezzeret has changed, and that perhaps it's not the best idea to attack him right now.

Tezzeret does remind them that while Nicol Bolas isn't a threat at the moment, he still is very angry,  and it's best they finish their business.

For Liliana Vess, although her help was inadvertent, it was there nonetheless, and his gift to her is her freedom. He knows that many of the alternate Liliana's were bound to Nicol Bolas by blood pact, and he knows that she is one of them. There are also many who never made such a compact. He asks Liliana to close her eyes despite her skepticism and places his hand on her head. When he asks her if she has learned the perils of making blood pacts, and would never do so with the dragon Nicol Bolas, she tells him that is the obvious choice, and thanks him for nothing because she doesn't realize she's changed.

(Is she changed? It seems more like he's swapped one Liliana for another. That's not saving her, it's just putting the one that is suffering, the one that is bound and enslaved, off in a corner where she can't be seen or heard. Some gift.)

“I’m out of this place,” she said. “Jace, it’s been real. Baltrice, kiss my ass.”

(Clever and appropriate dialogue as always.)

Before Tezzeret can speak to Baltrice, she tells him that she doesn't want anything he has to offer, and rather just wants the device taken out of Jace's head. He tells her that's already been taken care of, and insists she listen to what he has to say.

Tezzeret hands her a necklace and tells her that it has the power to protect her from any mental intrusion. Jace Beleren immediately becomes concerned and tells her to not put it on. That only makes matters worse. There is pain, fear, and anger as Baltrice confronts Jace and brushes past his excuses that he needs to trust her and that what Tezzeret is doing is a trick. They both know it isn't so. They both know that what Tezzeret is saying is the truth.

Jace gives in and explains why he did it. Why he's altered her mind. He tells her that the fight between Liliana Vess and herself did not end well for her. He tells her that Liliana summoned the ghosts of every living thing that had ever died in Tezzeret's tower, and in doing so made her insane. He tells her that he pushed that all back, and saved her life. He also tells her that the ghosts aren't gone and that if she puts on that necklace she will die.

With Tezzeret pushing her to put on the necklace and Jace Beleren pushing back the other way. Baltrice knows the truth, and knows that she can never put it on to be absolutely sure. With a sob, Baltrice turns and walks away.

Jace accuses Tezzeret of taking away the happiness that Baltrice once had and of not knowing what true happiness feels like, but Tezzeret only says that he suspects it feels exactly how he's feeling right now. Tezzeret tells Jace that his talents are too useful to be wasted, so his gift is life. Jace gets to go free. He explains to Jace that he can do this despite the hate he feels for the man because he also knows that Jace isn't a particularly brave man, and now he's going to have to live in constant fear that Baltrice might change her mind about how she's taking all this new information and decide to go after him. He's going to have to live in fear that Tezzeret himself has decided that maybe it's not worth it to have Jace running around. And he has to worry about Nicol Bolas.

Tezzeret lets Jace know that Bolas has been severely crippled thanks to a device that was delivered to him when the dragon read his mind. When Jace protests that he had nothing to do with it and that it was all Tezzeret's planning and execution, Tezzeret says that doesn't matter.

(Really? It doesn't matter? Even though Nicol Bolas is right there watching and listening to all of this? Despite Bolas hearing the fine details of what went on and can hear that Jace had absolutely zero part in the plan to transfer device to the dragon besides existing?)

(Maybe he's just trying to convince Jace to believe it and doesn't believe it himself.)

Jace then counters that if Bolas is mad at him for taking no part, then Tezzeret himself must be worried even more.

That's when Tezzeret reveals the dragon to the telepath, and he tells Jace that they've come to an agreement. Jace nearly chokes in surprise and runs as fast as he can.

Nicol Bolas is quite satisfied with the reaction, but after that's over he turns his attention back to Tezzeret and asks him to clarify what he meant by partnership.

“Listen to me: I don’t know what you’ve planned, but I know it’s big, and I suspect it is intended to repair your mind and rebuild your power. I also believe that your plan is going to involve a great deal of destruction, not to mention the deaths of many planeswalkers, including myself. This is where you and I have a problem. I’m not certain that you even know how destructive whatever you’re doing will be. As far as I can see, you might have passed your mental tipping point, and millions or billions may die for nothing at all. So I’m going to help you.”

Tezzeret asks Nicol Bolas to please indulge him despite his skepticism and think about what's he knows from this whole experience. He knows that Tezzeret beat him and could have killed him at any moment.

“This whole thing hasn’t been about you at all. It’s—you did all this—everything you have shown me, everything you have done to me, and everything you haven’t done to me … you …”

Bolas felt the dawn of a sensation he could not identify. He wondered if it might be awe. “It was about me all along.…”
“Yes,” Tezzeret said. “Also all about me. At the same time. Curious, isn’t it?”

(Does that make any sense to you? Tezzeret says that this hasn't been about Nicol Bolas. Then Nicol Bolas "realizes" it's all about himself. Then Tezzeret agrees that it's been about Nicol Bolas.... so has this been about Nicol Bolas or not? Am I just missing something? Or was that "hasn't" supposed to be a "has"?

(I know I've had plenty of mistakes in this blog, especially recently because of how last minute I'm getting posts up on the site, so I haven't been doing thorough 2nd drafts to catch mistakes, but a blog isn't a book, and at least the way I view it, blog's get a bit more leeway when it comes to typos. On top of that I have the ability to go back through my posts and correct them when I have time. Not so true for a book.)

This whole thing was a set up to prove to Nicol Bolas that Tezzeret can be trusted.

Tezzeret shrugged. “Trust is too much to hope for between beings like us, Bolas. But you can believe I will not harm you unless you leave me no other choice. You can believe that I do not want you to kill billions, for good reason or otherwise, and I certainly don’t want you to kill me. I believe that you want so badly to be restored to your former glory that you will accept help. Even from me.”
“So this …” Bolas began to understand the feeling of the metal whirl that had plagued Tezzeret in the Riddle Gate. “So this is about the fourth line.”

Tezzeret agrees. This is about the fourth line of the riddle and the fourth characteristic that makes a good artificer. Insight.

“Whom do you rescue by slaying …”

“Exactly. Whom do I rescue by slaying.” The artificer offered his hand. “I don’t want the answer to be you.”
Bolas stared.

(Okay, even more confused, and I don't think this is because of a typo. What was the point of the emphasis on the "I", and how would Tezzeret "save" Nicol Bolas by saving him, and if he's going to be saved by the slaying, why doesn't he want Nicol Bolas to be the answer?)

Nicol Bolas agrees that he doesn't want that either, but realizes that he'll probably eventually kill Tezzeret. Just not today.

With that settled with. Nicol Bolas asks about Crucius and if he really is the etherium sphinx statue that they're standing besides.

(If you can call that being settled.)

Tezzeret says that it's not. Tezzeret tells Nicol Bolas that he is Crucius. And then laughs at the reaction on the dragon's face and tells him he is just joking. Kind of. Maybe.

He says that he may become Crucius in the future, or that Crucius may become him. Or that that both of them might be Nicol Bolas. It's complicated.

(More on this later.)

The statue is just an elegant work of art. Nicol Bolas hears the reverence in Tezzeret's voice, and Tezzeret explains that to become what Crucius has become is his fondest dream, and with the power that he has in this place it is something he could easily transform himself into, except he knows that's not his destiny.

“I don’t expect you to really understand this. I’m not sure I really understand it. Crucius thought he had an answer to existence—he thought he understood himself, the Multiverse, and his place in it. This place is what he became after he found out he was wrong.”

Tezzeret looked up into the face of the Metal Sphinx as though it were looking back at him. “I don’t know if he decided there was no answer, or if he simply realized that whatever answer there was, he wasn’t the one who could find it. So he set out to design and build someone who was.”

Bolas snorted. “You?” “Not me personally. Someone who can do what I have done. Who can become what I’ve become. Someone who can reach this place, understand what it is, and realize that the real Search is only now beginning.”

Well... then why was the riddle on the statue written in classical draconic and how did Tezzeret learn to read it? Tezzeret tells him that it's not. It's just written with a magic that allows any reader to read it in a language they're comfortable reading. And it wasn't written by Crucius. It was written by Tezzeret himself. Or whoever is actually the Seeker which, at the moment, he assumes is himself. He explains that he didn't know that he, himself, wrote it until after he solved it.

[For reference:

I AM THE STONE THAT COMES NOT FROM THE SEA
I AM THE BLOOD BUT THE BLOOD IS NOT ME
I AM THE KEY TO THE DOOR WITH NO LOCKS
I AM THE MAINSPRING THAT WINDS BROKEN CLOCKS
I AM YOUR TEARS ON THE CHAINS OF THE RACK
I AM YOUR GIFT AND YOU CAN’T GIVE ME BACK

[A riddle from the very first chapter that isn't repeated again, and isn't referenced in this chapter. It's just something you're supposed to remember.]

When asked what the answer is, Tezzeret smiles and says, "I am the carmot."

Nicol Bolas cannot believe that the ultimate answer that seems to have turned Tezzeret into a god in this place is simply about accepting, "I am the carmot." Then Tezzeret clarifies the answer and tells Bolas that he is just a an ill-mannered dragon and that it is Tezzeret himself that is the carmot. The artificer then takes a needle of sangrite that's been stashed away in his hair and stabs his own eye.

Tezzeret's face bursts into flame and starts a fire that consumes his whole body. When it's over Tezzeret's head is gone. Then a moment later Tezzert's head pops back in existence, good as new except that his eye and a part of his face is now made of etherium. Tezzeret pops out the eye and tosses it to the dragon as a gift. Nicol Bolas catches it, and when he looks back at Tezzeret he sees a new eye of flesh back where the metal one was pulled from.

Nicol Bolas' mood changes. Maybe he hasn't found Crucius, but he's still found a planeswalker that can create etherium. That can be quite useful. But before his thoughts can wander further down this path, Tezzeret tells him that he'll be leaving, and will drop by to check on him in a day or two.

The idea is absurd. Nicol Bolas won't simply just stand around and wait for Tezzeret to return. The problem is that when he tries to planeswalk... nothing happens. Tezzeret explains that this place is very similar to the Riddle Gate. He tells Bolas that he knows the answer from diving into Tezzeret's own mind. He just has to remember that it is easy to discard etherium... but getting rid of the desire for it is much harder.

(So how are Liliana, Baltrice, and Jace going to leave?)

Nicol Bolas is furious, but is powerless to do anything about it. Tezzeret tells him this must be so, because once he leaves this place, his powers will be as limited as they ever were before, and he'd prefer not to have the dragon by his side.

As for where he's going? He's going to spend some time with his father.

* * *


How to Tackle This

This was a looong chapter. Longest chapter in the book. Let's break this down bit by bit.


Tezzeret's Plan

Tezzeret very clearly states that this was his plan all along to prove to Nicol Bolas that they can work together. At the same time how can that possibly be? Tezzeret took on Jace and implanted the device before he ever talked to Sharuum and learned about the hints that led him to the Crystal Labyrinth, which in turn leads him to learning about the existence of the metal island.

It makes sense that Tezzeret assumed that eventually, some time after implanting the device, Nicol Bolas would read Jace's mind and the device would transfer over. But all the device does is keep Bolas from harming other planeswalkers. That in no way would grant Tezzeret ultimate dominion over Nicol Bolas and keep the dragon within his power so he could demonstrate to him that they could be partners. Tezzeret was only granted these god-like beings after becoming a new man after he solved the Riddle Gate and was granted access to the island!

Is this just supposed to be one more example of how Tezzeret thinks he's smarter than he actually is because he's putting things together after the fact to make himself look smart? If that's the case it's working, but I don't know why you'd want your protagonist to come off that way.


Tezzeret's Gifts

Obviously no planeswalkers can die in the writing of this book. They're too valuable as cards for the game. Tezzeret lets them all go and leaves them some gifts. I already spoke my piece about how swapping Lilianas didn't really seem much like a gift, but let's talk about the other two.

Baltrice's gift was pretty well done. It's been building up for the entire book and the catch-22 that she's put in is quite a dilemma that gives a nice new layer for her to live with. I've never been fond of Baltrice. She always just seemed like the ugly step-sister to Chandra Nalaar because a fire-themed planeswalker was needed but they couldn't have the actual Chandra in the story. I didn't really like her all that much while she was Tezzeret's second-in-command and I didn't like the blindly-loyal-thanks-to-mind-control version in this book. I didn't hate her, but I didn't like her either.

The gift of the necklace and the knowledge that might kill her if she wants to know the truth with absolute certainty is something I can appreciate.

As for Jace's gift. Well... it didn't seem particularly cruel like the words of the book seemed to imply to me. I don't really see Jace cowering in the corner wondering if people will be out to get him. It's not like Tezzert and Nicol Bolas weren't his enemies before. He's lived with the threat that they could come after him before, he'll do it again. The scene seems mostly a set up to have Tezzeret and Nicol Bolas have a moment together where they get to watch him run in fear. That was actually kind of funny, it's just the set up about how he's going to live out the rest of his life that didn't work for me.

I don't hate it, don't love it. It kind of balances out and is a somewhat satisfactory wrap up for his character in this book.


Tezzeret is/isn't Crucius

This is a total copout. Tezzeret may or may not be Crucius. He may or may not become him, or was already him and then has since turned into Tezzeret. Both Tezzeret and Crucius may be Nicol Bolas.

That last part is the worst of the bunch and pretty much says there is no answer.

Crucius is the metal island, the metal world, but so is Tezzeret. Tezzeret can make himself into the metal island, but he knows that's not his destiny except that maybe it is his destiny to be the metal island.

Stover totally cheated us on any answer.

We've seen the friend of Crucius that is the sphinx Sharuum. We've seen the son of Crucius that is the sphinx Kemuel. But we're never going to get a straight answer as to who the creator of etherium is and what happened to him.

Crucius thought he knew the answers to everything, but then turned himself into the island when he discovered he was wrong. If Tezzeret is going to be Crucius, does that mean that since he realizes that... that it isn't true?

It's like, "This sentence is a lie." It just doesn't make any sense.


Tezzeret is Carmot

That's the answer to the riddle that was told to us only in the beginning of the book, yet was supposed to be something we remembered for this final chapter? First of all, complete failure in refreshing the reader's memory for the climax to the story. Second of all, maybe that was intentionally done because it doesn't really seem like an answer at all.

It doesn't make any sense, but if we have our characters say with conviction that it does, and don't remind them what the riddle was in the first place then no one will notice.

A good riddle gets a person's mind working, wondering what the answer is, and when the answer is revealed or figured out it instantly makes sense.

I AM THE STONE THAT COMES NOT FROM THE SEA
I AM THE BLOOD BUT THE BLOOD IS NOT ME
I AM THE KEY TO THE DOOR WITH NO LOCKS
I AM THE MAINSPRING THAT WINDS BROKEN CLOCKS
I AM YOUR TEARS ON THE CHAINS OF THE RACK
I AM YOUR GIFT AND YOU CAN’T GIVE ME BACK

Answer: I am the carmot.

Again, maybe this is just going over my head, but that doesn't seem to make much sense to me, and certainly isn't smack your forehead obvious. I suppose it can work for some of the lines, but certainly not all of them.

I AM THE STONE THAT COMES NOT FROM THE SEA

First of all, there are plenty of stones that don't come from the sea. I don't understand how that means anything at all.

Second of all, since we were told that carmot is a catalyst for the creation of etherium, a catalyst that reacts with sangrite, I suppose we weren't specifically told that it's not stone. But since it turns out that Tezzeret is carmot and he's not a stone, that doesn't seem to make any sense.

Tezzeret does come from Tidehollow which is next to the sea... maybe somehow that fits.

I AM THE BLOOD BUT THE BLOOD IS NOT ME 

Is that a take on "I am more than just flesh and bone"? A commentary on nature vs. nurture?

Or is it saying that carmot is sangrite, but sangrite is not carmot. Although since carmot is only a catalyst, and so by definition is a substance that helps speed reactions along but it not part of either the products or reactants, that actually isn't true. It would be more appropriate to say that etherium is sangrite but sangrite is not etherium, so maybe that's not it.

I AM THE KEY TO THE DOOR WITH NO LOCKS 

This is so vague that it clearly very solidly can fit with the answer of "I am the carmot," but it could fit with all kinds of answers as well.

Or is this in reference to Tezzeret transforming himself to get past the Riddle Gate.

I AM THE MAINSPRING THAT WINDS BROKEN CLOCKS

Another vague line. It could mean anything.


Although if the word clock is an allusion to clockworking, it doesn't work because Tezzeret has removed clockworking from Nicol Bolas and pretty much killed the clockworker that is Silas Renn. He destroyed them, put them back into working order..

I AM YOUR TEARS ON THE CHAINS OF THE RACK 

I may not be getting this one at all. Since it follows the fixing broken clocks line, I'm guessing this means it's a good thing to have "tears" in a chain. A good thing to create weak links that might break before the rack pulls you apart... (Although I don't think simple tears would be enough to keep you alive/allow you to break free from a rack.)

Edit: I mistakenly read that as "the tears" instead of "your tears" which changed the meaning of the word to be tear as in "tearing a piece of paper" rather than tear as in "tears from crying." That's one oversight fixed... but that still doesn't help me figure out how that equates to carmot and/or Tezzeret being the answer.

I AM YOUR GIFT AND YOU CAN’T GIVE ME BACK

What does this have to do with being carmot? Or does it just mean that once that Tezzeret discovers that he is carmot, then he can't go back to not being carmot?

To me the whole thing reads as:

I AM SOMETHING THAT EXISTS
I AM MORE THAN THE SUM OF MY PARTS
I AM A PATH TO DISCOVERY
I AM AWESOME
I AM AN EXPRESSION OF PAIN
I AM A STATE OF BEING THAT WHEN LEARNED CANNOT BE UNLEARNED

I am I just totally wrong? I feel like it's strongly possible because this just doesn't make sense. When someone tells me what this all really means I'm going to feel so stupid.

But let's take a look at this one other way. If the answer is, "I am the carmot," if "I am = carmot" then let's fill in the blanks and see how that works.

CARMOT IS THE STONE THAT COMES NOT FROM THE SEA
CARMOT IS THE BLOOD BUT THE BLOOD IS NOT ME
CARMOT IS THE KEY TO THE DOOR WITH NO LOCKS
CARMOT IS THE MAINSPRING THAT WINDS BROKEN CLOCKS
CARMOT IS YOUR TEARS ON THE CHAINS OF THE RACK
CARMOT IS YOUR GIFT AND YOU CAN’T GIVE ME BACK

Does that makes sense to you?

Or how about swapping "I AM" for "TEZZERET IS"

TEZZERET IS THE STONE THAT COMES NOT FROM THE SEA
TEZZERET IS THE BLOOD BUT THE BLOOD IS NOT ME
TEZZERET IS THE KEY TO THE DOOR WITH NO LOCKS
TEZZERET IS THE MAINSPRING THAT WINDS BROKEN CLOCKS
TEZZERET IS YOUR TEARS ON THE CHAINS OF THE RACK
TEZZERET IS YOUR GIFT AND YOU CAN’T GIVE ME BACK

For reference, here's a riddle with an answer that makes sense.

Until I am measured
I am not known,
Yet how you miss me
When I have flown.

Answer: Time
Until time is measured
Time is not known,
Yet how you miss time
When time has flown.

More riddles can be found here .


Tezzeret and His Father

What was that last line all about? Now that Tezzeret is a changed man he's going to be a good son and visit his father? You know... Tezzeret's father isn't a changed man. He was an abusive and negligent father that deserved to be abandoned.

Note: I do not think that Tezzeret was going to leave for Esper to get his revenge against his father.

We're shown that Tezzeret feels like he's been a bad son and he now has to return to the person that abused him for his entire childhood. While he's the protagonist of the book, I know that he's a villain in the overall Magic storyline, but still... that's a horrible way for him to exit.


Two Epilogues to Go

There are two epilogues left. One two and half pages long, the other is two pages even. What else is there to squeeze out of this story? Let's find out.


1 comment:

  1. The point of the emphasis on *I* was that Tezzeret solves Sharuum's riddle by asking what *he* would do, not trying to find a generic answer that in theory anyone could get. The point is that if Bolas perpetrated a stupidly destructive plan, Tezzeret would be saving him from himself by killing him. Something like that.

    Jace's gift was actually quite clever. His gift wasn't life, you misread that, it was fear, and if Tezzeret ever feels like Jace isn't scared enough he'll drop in and hurt someone Jace loves. So that gives Jace an incentive to stay scared, and something to be scared of.

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