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Ghostbloods

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Ghostbloods
Ghostblood.svg
Universe Cosmere
Featured In The Stormlight Archive
This page or section contains spoilers for Rhythm of War!
This information has the ability to potentially ruin elements of the plot for the reader. Proceed with caution if you have not read this book.
This page or section needs to be updated with new information for Oathbringer!
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The Ghostbloods are a secret organization on Roshar[1], though they are not Rosharan in origin.[2] Members are required to get a tattoo of three overlapping diamonds somewhere on their bodies.[3]

Objectives[edit]

Power, portable, easily contained, renewable. You hold the energy of a storm in your hand, Veil. That raw energy, plucked from the heart of the raging tempest. It is tamed—not only a safe source of light, but of power that those with … particular interests and abilities can access.

—Mraize to Shallan[4]

The Ghostbloods seek power. They are seeking a way to get Stormlight (Investiture) offworld from Roshar through Shadesmar. They hunt Restares and the Sons of Honor as they fear they are close to discovering the secret of making this possible. Stormlight is free, portable, easy-to-access power.[4] To attain this goal, they need control of the Oathgates, which inspired their hunt for Urithiru.[5] They seek perfect gemstones that would allow the Stormlight to last long enough to get offworld, though there is a Connection problem.[4]

The Ghostbloods are obsessed with finding Ba-Ado-Mishram, who has the ability to bind minds of an entire people, though it is unclear the reason.[6] They are not interested in seeing Odium rule Roshar.[4] They seek to bond Sja-anat, as her ancient knowledge would be invaluable.[7]

They also seek to imprison Heralds in gemstones, in order to obtain information. Thaidakar seeks knowledge about an affliction he shares with the Heralds, in order to save himself.[8]

Hideouts[edit]

They own a tenement building in a warcamp on the Shattered Plains that has a basement. In it there was a display of trophies that Shallan saw, including several enormous gemhearts, a tusk was probably from a whitespine, an eye socket that looked like the structure of a santhid’s skull, a vial of pale sand,[9] a couple of thick hairpins, a lock of golden hair, a Yolish branch of a tree with writing on it,[10] a silver knife, an odd flower preserved in some kind of solution, and a chunk of pale pink crystal that looked like it might be some kind of gemstone.[11] There were also shells that Shallan vaguely recognized. There were no plaques describing any of these mementos.[12]

Structure[edit]

The Ghostbloods operate across multiple planets within the Cosmere.[2] They operate within a strict hierarchy, as a group of hunters without structure would turn on each other too easily. They do not strike against their own. They do not negotiate upward.[7] It is common for a master to spy on their pupils.[4] Ialai Sadeas warns Shallan that the Ghostbloods will watch her to ensure she doesn't rise high enough to learn secrets that could hurt them.[13]

Upon joining the Ghostbloods, they share everything they know and the member can influence decisions. Mraize warned Shallan that if she were to break ties with the group, she would be hunted. He and his babsk would not hunt her, but all they could do was discourage others.[4]

Thaidakar is not on Roshar and only comes as an avatar.[14]

Known Members[edit]

  • Thaidakar: a high-ranking member referred to as 'master' by Mraize [15]
  • Iyatil: a high-ranking member, the pupil of Thaidakar, purports to be Mraize's master, a worldhopper
  • Mraize: a high-ranking member, the student of Iyatil, a worldhopper
  • Shallan Davar: under the alias of "Veil" (formerly)
  • Jin: a golden-haired man
  • Kabsal: a member of the Kharbranth Ardentia (deceased)
  • Lin Davar: Shallan's father (deceased)
  • Luesh: the Davar family's steward (deceased)
  • Other unidentified members who visited the Davar estate[15]
  • Unnamed Sleepless: used a pen-shaped cremling to spy on Wit[2]

Actions[edit]

Attempted Murder of Jasnah Kholin[edit]

The Ghostbloods have made several attempts to murder Jasnah Kholin, and claims that she has had a number of their members assassinated as well. When Jasnah spent time in Kharbranth to study the Voidbringers, a Ghostblood agent named Kabsal infiltrated the local Ardentia in order to kill Jasnah. He used her young ward Shallan Davar to get close to Jasnah, which led to them forming a relationship. As Kabsal attempted to poison Jasnah with bread, he was inadvertently killed when he ate some of the poisoned bread and Jasnah Soulcast his antidote, mistakenly believing that to be the poison. Jasnah later found the Ghostblood tattoo on Kabsal's arm.

When Jasnah left Kharbranth, the Ghostbloods planted at least one operative aboard the ship Wind's Pleasure on the journey from Kharbranth to the Shattered Plains. That operative, along with other men Shallan did not recognize,[16] attempted to murder Jasnah. They thought they'd succeeded, but in reality, Jasnah had escaped to Shadesmar by Elsecalling.[17][18]

Jasnah assumes that she was targeted because of her Radiant oaths.[18]

Recruiting Shallan Davar[edit]

A man identified with the Ghostbloods was financing Lin Davar in his bid to become Highprince of Veden, Jah Keved. After an unknown Veden Shardbearer attacked Amaram, Amaram speculated that Thaidakar and the Ghostbloods were behind the attack.[19] The unknown shardbearer turned out to be Helaran Davar, Shallan's brother.[20]

The Ghostbloods were sought out by Shallan Davar, who, under the disguise of Veil, wanted to investigate them. Shallan met with Mraize and Iyatil in a Ghostblood hideout located in Sebarial's warcamp, and managed to trick them into believing that she was sent there by Tyn. Mraize, unaware that Tyn was dead, ordered Shallan to tell Tyn to investigate the quarters of Meridas Amaram. Shallan successfully performed this task, and brought her findings to Mraize, which led to her accidentally revealing her photographic memory. Mraize then deduced that Tyn was dead, killed by Shallan, but commended her for it. He then told her that she could get a place among the Ghostbloods if she completed tasks for them. However, he also allowed other Ghostbloods to attempt to murder her if they wanted to. Shallan managed to avoid the attempts on her life, and carried out her next task, to investigate Taln's presence in the warcamp of Dalinar Kholin, to a satisfactory manner.

After the Battle of Narak, and the subsequent discovery of Urithiru, Mraize confronted Shallan, and revealed that he had figured out her real identity as Lin Davar's daughter, Jasnah Kholin's ward, and a Knight Radiant with the ability to Soulcast. Mraize reminded her of her family's debt to the Ghostbloods, and also revealed that Ghostblood agents had rescued her brothers from the civil war in Jah Keved, and would bring them safely to Urithiru. The Ghostblood operatives succeeded, and the Davar brothers arrived in Urithiru after the Battle of Thaylen Fields.

Shallan's identities debated their interest in joining the Ghostbloods. Veil was interested in joining, but refused to get the tattoo.[21] Shallan planned to break ties with the Ghostbloods.[5][4] Formless, an imagined fourth identity for Shallan where she hid her self doubt and selfish ambitions, wanted to join the Ghostbloods.[22]

Mraize offered Shallan full membership in the Ghostbloods in return for assassinating Restares, leader of the Sons of Honor.[8] Shallan did not go through with it and broke ties with the group. She threatened Mraize to leave Urithiru and warned him that she would be hunting for Ba-Ado-Mishram. Mraize warned her that she'd moved against the group in the most offensive of ways.[14]

This will not end well for you, Shallan. You make an enemy of the most powerful organization in all the cosmere.

—Mraize to Shallan[14]

Cleansing Urithiru[edit]

Mraize asked Shallan to investigate the wrongness in Urithiru, which she was already sensing.[23] This led her to find, confront, and defeat the Midnight Mother.[24]

Pursuit of the Sons of Honor[edit]

The Ghostbloods wished to keep an eye on the activities of House Sadeas, and Mraize was personally spying on them, acting as a guard to Ialai Sadeas in Urithiru.[4] They murdered Thanadal and Vamah. They struck at Ialai several times and ultimately succeeded when Shallan assassinated her with Blackbane, though Shallan claimed she did this for the good of Alethkar.[13][22]

Shallan and the Unseen Court searched Ialai's bed chambers and found a notebook containing many Ghostblood secrets, including a map of Shadesmar, a route through the Sea of Lost Lights, and Thaidakar's supposed offworld origins.[4]

Shallan hunted Restares to Lasting Integrity. Restares was an alias for the Herald Kalak. After an internal struggle, Shallan decided against killing him. She offered to share information about the Ghostbloods. He claimed to be close to getting offworld.[22]

Recruiting Sja-anat[edit]

During her wedding, Shallan is instructed in a letter from Mraize to recruit Sja-anat into the Ghostbloods.[25] Mraize requested a bond between a Ghostblood and one of her "enlightened" spren. Shallan only arranged a meeting.[4] Sja-anat sent Tumi, who ended up bonding Rlain.[26]

Bringing other forms of Investiture to Roshar[edit]

The Ghostbloods have plans to commercialize Investiture on a much larger scale than what happened on Scadrial. In these efforts they bring sand from Taldain, Seons from Sel, and Aviars from First of the Sun to Roshar. They also want to use the Oathgates to facilitate the trade of these items on Roshar, as they would not need to rely on perpendicularities.

Jasnah and Adolin observed that all gems in circulation appeared to be flawed. They speculated that a group, presumably the Ghostbloods, had been secretly collecting perfect spheres.[27]

Trivia[edit]

  • The name of the Ghostbloods means something, and has roots in specific cosmere events.[28]
  • The Ghostbloods would actively recruit from the Seventeenth Shard, particularly from their field agents.[29]
  • They are not working together with the Seventeenth Shard.[30]
  • The Ghostbloods have had interactions with Autonomy.[31]
  • The Ghostbloods find Hoid intriguing.[32]
  • The Ghostbloods do not trust the Sleepless. They are worried about having their organization taken over.[33]

Notes[edit]

  1. The Way of Kings chapter 74#
  2. a b c Rhythm of War chapter 64#
  3. Tor.com Q&A with Brandon Sanderson
    Arcanum - 2011-01-10#
  4. a b c d e f g h i j Rhythm of War chapter 13#
  5. a b Rhythm of War chapter 9#
  6. Rhythm of War chapter 24#
  7. a b Rhythm of War chapter 30#
  8. a b Rhythm of War chapter 82#
  9. Emerald City Comic Con 2018
    Arcanum - 2018-03-01#
  10. Shadows of Self signing London UK
    Arcanum - 2015-10-19#
  11. Idaho Falls signing
    Arcanum - 2018-12-29#
  12. Words of Radiance chapter 43#
  13. a b Rhythm of War chapter 7#
  14. a b c Rhythm of War chapter 115#
  15. a b Words of Radiance chapter 54#
  16. Words of Radiance chapter 7#
  17. Words of Radiance chapter 34#
  18. a b Oathbringer chapter 33#
  19. The Way of Kings chapter 51#
  20. 17th Shard Forum Q&A
    Arcanum - 2012-09-28#
  21. Rhythm of War chapter 20#
  22. a b c Rhythm of War chapter 93#
  23. Oathbringer chapter 22#
  24. Oathbringer chapter 30#
  25. Oathbringer chapter 122#
  26. Rhythm of War chapter 114#
  27. Rhythm of War chapter 29#
  28. Skyward Pre-Release AMA
    Arcanum - 2018-10-29#
  29. Skyward release party
    Arcanum - 2018-11-06#
  30. Paris signing
    Arcanum - 2016-10-22#
  31. JordanCon 2018
    Arcanum - 2018-04-21#
  32. Skyward Houston signing
    Arcanum - 2018-11-19#
  33. FanX Spring 2019
    Arcanum - 2019-04-19#
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