by User: Sheep
|Featured In||The Stormlight Archive|
The Voidbringers are a race of creatures known only as myths to most inhabitants of Roshar. Legend tells of a time when they attacked mankind in their homes in the Tranquiline Halls, forcing them to Roshar. The Voidbringers then attacked mankind on Roshar, attempting to force them into Damnation. According to legend, mankind defeated the Voidbringers once and for all during the Last Desolation. However, over the course of The Way of Kings it is implied that the Voidbringers are not as absent as the legends claim.
The Voidbringers are also capable of using Stormlight to fuel magic, though we are not yet certain what they can do. In the prologue of The Way of Kings, Szeth states that he has heard Voidbringers can retain Stormlight indefinitely, without losing any to leaks as humans do when they hold it.
Near the end of The Way of Kings, Jasnah speculates to Shallan that the Parshendi and Parshmen are at least part of the Voidbringer species. At one point in The Way of Kings, during a conversation with Navani, Adolin, Renarin, and Dalinar via spanreed, Jasnah has Shallan sketch a picture of a Voidbringer from an historical text. When the sketch was complete, all agreed that it closely resembled a Chasmfiend.
A picture sent from Jasnah to Dalinar via spanreed, combined with the similarities in appearance to thunderclasts or chasmfiends, has led to the speculation the chasmfiends are voidbringers as well, and possibly some earlier stage in the development of a thunderclast. Jasnah states along with it that the artist might have only drawn the most fearsome thing she could imagine.
It is also speculated, based largely off of The Almighty's declaration at the end of The Way of Kings that Odium is planning to attack, and his added implication that Odium is behind the Desolations, that the Voidbringers are the troops used by Odium. Though there is no confirmation of this, the fact that each of the Desolations brings Voidbringers with it shows that the Voidbringers and Odium at least share some goals. Given Eshonai's change in personality and the screaming she experiences when she attunes the rhythm of peace, it is likely that the Voidbringers are similar to the Koloss or other Hemalurgic beings that are controlled by a Shard.
Alternatively, it may be that voidbringers are more accurately described as any creature (or object, in the case of thunderclasts) bonded to (or possessed by) a spren of Odium. In this way, voidbringers are not a species or collection of species (e.g. parshmen/parshendi, chasmfiends, thunderclasts); instead, these are simply creatures that have a predisposition to bonding Odium-spren. However, it's not entirely clear whether or not these creatures bond to Odium-spren voluntarily. So, it may be that they have been singled out for possession by Odium-spren. Either way, Eshonai's experience in Words of Radiance indicates that the will of a creature bonded to an Odium-spren is bent to serve Odium's hateful, destructive goals.