Monday, December 7, 2009

Reference Library Updates after The Gathering Storm: Composition and Politics of the Halls

By Linda

The article in the Reference Library on The Composition and Politics of the Halls 998-1000 NE has now been updated with information from The Gathering Storm. The factions of the various Halls have been re-analysed with particular emphasis on the political influence of the Ajah Heads and the Black Ajah.

Under the spoiler tag below I speculate on what the latest composition of the Hall might be.

Click here to expand the rest of this post

The Reunited Tower Hall under Egwene

What will be the composition of the new Hall? Removing Black Sitters, and those seemingly mired at the Black Tower, we are still left with too many Sitters in some Ajahs, and an embarrassing lack in others. Egwene warned that:

accommodations will have to be made, for between us there are far too many Sitters for the Hall, not to mention five too many Ajah heads. Some of you will have to step down…

- The Gathering Storm, To Be Forged Again

On The Gathering Storm book tour, Brandon Sanderson said

which Sitters remain in power after reunification will be dealt with quietly. The most likely default will be who was Sitter/Head before the split.

Blue Ajah

Lelaine is the only Blue Sitter around, currently. She may have been recently made Blue Ajah Head. Two more Sitters need to be raised for the Blue.

Brown Ajah

The Browns have an excess of Sitters. Saerin and Takima will probably stay Sitters. If Janya did not go to the Black Tower, she will probably be chosen; if she isn’t at the White Tower, then Shevan will probably become the third Sitter.

Green Ajah

Faiselle and Rubinde will probably remain Sitters for the Green. One of Rina, Malind and Samalin may be the third, but they are all too young. The Greens may elect a new third Sitter of proper age.

Grey Ajah

Varilin and Yukiri will probably remain Sitters for the Grey. If Naorisa Cambral is the right age, she may be the third Sitter, otherwise it will probably be Andaya Forae, who, although too young, gave the Hall’s invitation to Egwene to be Amyrlin.

Red Ajah

All three Sitters are absent from the Red Ajah. Duhara will be replaced anyway, because she is Black. Javindhra, while not on Verin’s Black list, may also be Black, judging by her behaviour, although this is academic since she is at the Black Tower. (Academic for the Hall, that is.) The Red Ajah was not given a chance to raise new Sitters prior to Egwene’s accession:

"Following Elaida's disappearance, they retreated back to their quarters. The Sitters here, they worried that the Red would choose new Sitters quickly and send them to this proceeding. I believe some . . . curt missives from the Hall of the Tower were enough to cow them."

- The Gathering Storm, To Be Forged Again

Egwene reported that the Reds have in part accepted her peace offering of choosing a Red as her Keeper. They may be slow to raise new Sitters under the guise of a ‘political gesture’ in the hope that those at the Black Tower return, but Egwene is likely to encourage them to raise new ones to have the Hall operating properly. If Pevara returns in time she is a likely Sitter. Lirene, who took the fall for the Reds over Sierin’s death, is a possible contender (provided she isn’t Black and fled).

White Ajah

For the White Ajah, Seaine and Saroiya are likely to remain Sitters. There may well be pressure within the Whites for Ferane to be either Ajah Head or Sitter, but not both. It's not common for the Ajah Head to also be a Sitter and for a good reason. It's considered not playing fair: other high ranking Aes Sedai in the Ajah want a chance to hold a high official position too. If the Ajah Head holds another official role it means that one woman holds two extremely powerful positions, while another woman does without. With too many Sitters, why should the Ajah Head also be a Sitter? The Ajah Heads lost standing due to promoting unsuitable Sitters and the price that Ferane (and Suana, too, for that matter) may pay for this is to resign her chair as Sitter. If Ferane resigns, she may well chose another Sitter of proper age, since Berana and Aledrin are too young.

Yellow Ajah

Doesine and Magla will probably retain their chairs for the Yellow. Suana and Romanda will contend for the remaining chair and for the role of Ajah Head. I think that Romanda will want to be in the Hall to counter Lelaine. Already Romanda has sent a note of protest to Egwene about her plans for the captured damane and Egwene expects Romanda to be a thorn in her side in the Hall for years. Suana will probably remain Ajah Head.

Egwene al’Vere, of no Ajah

Keeper of the Chronicles
Silviana Brehon, Red Ajah

Blue Ajah
Lelaine Akashi
+ 2 more

Brown Ajah
Saerin Asnobar
Janya Frende or Shevan

Green Ajah
Malind Nachenin or Rina Hafden or Samalin or new Sitter

Grey Ajah
Perhaps Naorisa Cambral if she is the right age, otherwise probably Andaya Forae

Red Ajah
3 to be raised

White Ajah
Seaine Herimon
new Sitter? Or Ferane?

Yellow Ajah
Doesine Alwain
Magla Daronos
Romanda Cassin probably rather than Suana

The Ajah Heads will probably be as they were:

Blue: maybe Lelaine if the previous incumbent was executed. Siuan tells Lelaine she is faithful to her as a Sitter for her Ajah in Knife of Dreams, When Last Sounds; she did not say Ajah Head. Therefore it was unlikely that Lelaine was Head of the Blue at that stage. However, The Gathering Storm Glossary has Lelaine as ‘suspected’ Blue Ajah Head. This might be an attempt to mislead, or the former Blue Ajah Head might have been executed for being Black and Lelaine has just taken her place.
Brown: Jesse Bilal
Green: Adelorna Bastine
Grey: Serancha Colvine
Red: Tsutama Rath
White: Ferane Neheran
Yellow: Suana Dragand


Ronmamita said...

If you communicate with the Jordan team, please share the request they provide a updated glossary of Black Ajah in all upcoming books, now that the great purge has begun and is one of the priorities of the reunited White Tower with Egwene as Amyrlyn.

I'm considering Javindhra, Tarna, and Tsutama all candidates for the Black Ajah. Where is Tsutama; can she be Mesaana? Tsutama seems to always know too much and orders Javindhra to the bonding team when Pevara and Tarna failed to come up with enough sisters for this mission. [A interesting side note: Elaida invited Tsutama, along with Toveine Gazal and Lirene Doirellin, back to the W T after their long exile. Was this a very convenient ploy that allowed the forsaken, Mesaana, into the W T? We may find it fruitful to suspect these characters.]

I can imagine the entire Red team failing to return to the W T, certainly Pevara has considered this possibility when thinking that she is no coward upon departing the Ogier grove in Tar Valon. She may even display her courage by confronting the Black Ajah sisters on her Red bonding team (that would be entertaining; don't you think?)

I would think it very odd if any Black Ajah sister returned to the White Tower now; and I would welcome a scene of Pevara confronting her Red/Black sisters prior to returning to the W T, even if she dies in the attempt. In this way it could be revealed that Silviana Brehon is not the sole heroic Red sister choosing to face danger for the greater good while opposing a Red.

Oh, and one final comment.
I am choosing to accept the text at face value that Egwene's hunch is true, Mesaana is roaming the W T and has a method to defeat detection by the Oath Rod.
Just one more dangerous element in the thick mix of chaos...

Linda said...

There is a list of all Black Ajah, their deeds and locations here on the blog.

Tsutama hasn't shown any excessive knowledge. When bonding Asha'man was suggested to her, she asked for information from the Tower library on mixed circles. Tsutama was recalled when Elaida became Amyrlin. Mesaana was already giving Alviarin orders by then.

I don't think anyone is suggesting that any Black sisters will return to the Tower. Quite the reverse.

Some have suggested that Mesaana remains in the Tower to corrupt the novices and Accepted and also learn Egwene's plans.