Kingkiller Chronicles Speculation (Spoilers for both books)
This thread is for speculation about the content of the Kingkiller Chronicles. This thread is not for discussion of the relative merits of the series, so please do not be part of it degenerating into one of those oh so fun internet brawls :rolleyes:.
Here be Spoilers!
I am currently listening to The Wise Man's Fear and am intrigued by the trouper boy's rhyme about the Lackless door.
Seven things stand before
The entrance to the Lackless door.
One of them a ring unworn
One a word that is foresworn
One a time that must be right
One a candle without light
One a son who brings the blood
One a door that holds the flood
One a thing tight-held in keeping
Then comes that which comes with sleeping.
Of these I think "a son who brings the blood", is probably the most obvious - which may make it the most suspect given Rothfuss's predelictions :D. I suspect most people have heard this all before, but for the benefit of those who have not...
Kvothe's mother "Laurian" was a noble who ran away with his father. There is a brief mention of Kvothe recalling staying with a noble family when he was very young, but I think we can dismiss this as a red herring - can't seem to find it and I don't think it too important.
It is revealed that Melowyn Lackless has a sister who was seduced by a Ruh trooper engendering her hatred of the "ravel", "I'd started a second bottle of wine by the time I read that young Netalia Lockless had run away with a troupe of traveling performers. Her parents had disowned her, of course, leaving Melaun the only heir to the lackless lands." Kvothe feels like he recognizes Melowyn the first time he meets her, presumably because of the similarities between her and his mother. We almost get this identity confirmed if we look back at Kvothe's drunken conversation with Wil and Sim while waiting to cross the bridge. Kvothe sings them a song his father wrote which got him kicked out of the wagon for the night, because of the bad meter rather than the lyrics according to Kvothe.
Dark Laurian, Arliden's wife,
Has a face like a blade of a knife
Has a voice like a prickledown burr
But can tally a sum like a moneylender.
My sweet Tally cannot cook.
But she keeps a tidy ledger-book
For all her faults I do confess
It's worth my life
To make my wife
Not tally a lot less...
To make my wife Not tally a lot less = To make my wife Netalia Lackless. Too much of a coincidence, especially when coupled with Tally being used as a name. It makes a deal more sense that Laurian would be angered over him endangering them by risking revealing her identity than because a song had bad meter - especially one that was obviously very tongue in cheek. Kvothe also repeats a rhyme he heard about Lady Lackless - might have been Lockless but its mentioned the name morphs a little - which upsets his mother, and she says he can make it up to her and the lady by gathering nettles, etc. And here, thanks to Contrarius, is that rhyme,
“Seven things has Lady Lackless
Keeps them underneath her black dress
One a ring that’s not for wearing
One a sharp word, not for swearing
Right beside her husband’s candle
There’s a door without a handle
In a box, no lid or locks
Lackless keeps her husband’s rocks
There’s a secret she’s been keeping
She’s been dreaming and not sleeping
On a road, that’s not for traveling
Lackless likes her riddle raveling.”
Rothfuss is not exactly being subtle with this, which to my mind is the biggest reason to be sceptical about the theory!
As for the other six things...
One of them a ring unworn - There is a mention of Kvothe's rings, a poem even,
On his first hand he wore rings of stone,
Iron, amber, wood and bone.
There were rings unseen on his second hand.
One was blood in a flowing band.
One of air all whisper thin,
And the ring of ice had a flaw within.
Full faintly shone the ring of flame,
and the final ring was without name.
There are also a few rings which may or may not be those mentioned in the rhyme. Auri gives Kvothe a ring that "holds secrets", Stapes gives him a ring of bone, and Melowyn gives him a ring of wood - the later two are probably those mentioned in the rhyme. It seems odd perhaps that the rhymn suggests these rings are actually worn by Kvothe, but given the nature of stories and the fact that the giving of the rings of wood and bone were significant and unusual that might make sense. For me those three are the prime candidates for "a ring unworn". Though Denna's blue stone ring might also be a candidate.
"One a word that is foresworn", could well be a name, perhaps the name of the fellow who stole the moon? I don't believe he is named by Felurian, though the female mercenary - what was her name? - does name him in her story as Jax I believe. The word foresworn could be his true name.
As for, "a time that must be right", I would guess that this might have something to do with the moon and ites relationship with the doors between the fae and mortal worlds. Felurian tells Kvothe that a full moon allows easy access between the worlds for those seeking to pass between them, and that a moonless night makes it possible to slip betweenworlds accidently and become trapped in the fae. Of course I am sure there are plenty of other options here, but the aforementioned is the only one which springs to my mind.
"One a candle with out light", has me pretty stumped, at a stretch perhaps something to do with Kilvin's search for an everburning lamp? Kilvin also has some ancient magical artefacts - though I am sure they are not so called - do any of them fit the bill? Not that I recall.
"One a door that holds the flood", um, the door in the archives? No idea really.
"One a thing tight-held in keeping", seems the most ambiguous, Denna's ring perhaps? Kvothe treasure his lute, but he goes through so many that hardly seems likely ;).
"Then comes that which comes with sleeping", nightmares perhaps? We could assume that the Skrael and the bodysnatching thingemy are from beyond the door, and they might be justifiably called nightmarish. Still that seems a little obvious for Rothfuss, I am expecting something clever.