|Featured In||The Stormlight Archive|
”Coming awake means leaving the nothingness, you know? Remembering the pain. But then I think, 'Well, he gets up.'
Appearance and Personality
Noril is a bearded Alethi darkeyed man with three moles on his upper left cheek and a cowlick in his greying hair. His entire left arm is missing, lost years prior to his arrival in Hearthstone. He suffers from suicidal depression but is inspired by Kaladin to keep his emotions from dominating his life.
”You need someone to talk to, Noril, when the darkness is strong. Someone to remind you the world hasn't always been this way; that it won’t always be this way.—Kaladin
Noril tried to escape the horrors of the war in Alethkar, in which he saw his family brutally killed while he was tied to a tree and unable to help, by emigrating to Hearthstone. He arrived to the town manifesting symptoms of severe battle shock, so Lirin took extra care to make sure he was put on the Fourth Bridge for evacuation. Upon their arrival at Urithiru, Lirin sent Noril to the ardents for treatment. Those ardents, who only treated physical ailments, in turn sent him on to the Devotary of Mercy for treatment for mental symptoms. At the Devotary, Noril told them he had no living relatives and made one attempt to commit suicide. The ardents there kept him in a dark, bare room until Kaladin and Teft came looking for him. Kaladin managed to get Noril to agree to come outside to talk to him by displaying profound understanding of how Noril felt. Outside on the balcony, Kaladin and Teft reminded Noril that his niece Cressa would be devastated if something happened to him; Noril felt better as they talked, even though he still couldn't bring himself to fully believe in and accept the outlook on life the other two tried to present him with. His situation sparked Kaladin's idea to begin group therapy sessions with those who suffered depression, and Kaladin insisted that the ardents release Noril and, later, several others into his care.
During the occupation of Urithiru, Noril ended up in the Radiant infirmary not long before the tower was restored, where he painted shash glyphs on people's foreheads. Hesina, irked by Lirin's attitude towards Kaladin, initiated a conversation between Lirin and Noril in which Noril explained why he wore the glyph on his forehead: Kaladin's persistence in the face of his own depression was an inspiration to Noril to keep fighting. After Lirin spoke to the others in the room who wore the glyph, he allowed Noril to paint it on his own forehead. Later, after Teft's death and Kaladin's final defeat of Lezian, Noril and a handful of others led the humans in defending the Radiant infirmary from the Pursuer's troops. After the ensuing battle in the atrium, Rlain spoke to the group of survivors, including the singers who had just fought alongside the humans; Noril took the lead in encouraging the humans to trust Rlain.
Noril and Kaladin, suffering from a similar malady, inspire each other. Noril is suicidal and has given up on life when Kaladin first finds him. Seeing Noril's plight, locked away in a dark room because no one knows what else to do with him, Kaladin realizes he might have ended up the same way had his life not gone how it had; this inspires Kaladin to begin group therapy sessions with Noril and the others being treated at the Devotary of Mercy. In fact, he begins to view his Ideals in a different light and makes peace with the fact that it really is better for him to pursue mental health treatment in place of fighting on the front lines of battle with the rest of the Windrunners.
Noril is likewise inspired by Kaladin to get up and face each day. Although he struggles at first with accepting the perspective shift that Kaladin tries to give him, he slowly becomes much more functional and ends up one of Kaladin's staunchest supporters.