Arithon - Role in the Story (Traitor's Knot)

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Spoiler warning: Contains plot elements from Traitor's Knot.

Third Age 5670: In late spring, Arithon is shown via Sethvir's earth link, reading in Davien's library and promising Elaira that he will soon meet up with her. His awakened mage sight also triggers prismatic overlay of future probabilities, stemming from his s'Ahelas lineage. Arithon discusses his broadened perceptions with Davien and expresses his intent to proceed without further killing. As Arithon recovers and tames his reawakened mage talent, Davien often disappears on odd errands. When Davien attempts to trigger the curse with Lysaer's auric imprint, Arithon's recall of Alithiel's star song allows him to break the compulsion. Arithon spends the season learning more from Davien's library while Davien keeps him abreast of outside events. He shows Arithon the meeting between Ellaine and Eldir in Telmandir and again recommends books on necromancy, which Arithon refuses. Later, Davien challenges Arithon in a blind duel with practice sticks in the library, and urges him to revisit Alithiel in the armory.

When Selidie Prime engages the Great Waystone against the Evenstar, Davien warns Arithon and agrees to transport him on board. Arithon prepares the crew for an incoming fiend storm and uses his gifts of mage talent and music to protect the ship. When he goes below deck to protect the water casks, Fionn Areth accompanies him. The pair protect the water stores and set up a warded area of protection over the Koriani sigil using Alithiel, and Arithon orders the Evenstar to sail farther away from the continent. Arithon is struggling to reproduce the tones of a fiend bane with pots of water when he stumbles from exhaustion. When confronted by Teive, he offers to leave in a small boat but ultimately convinces Teive that staying in defense of the ship is everyone's best option. He tries to explain to Fionn Areth why he would put his friends' lives at risk to save the lives of the strangers in the Alliance. Dakar, Fionn Areth, Vhandon, Talvish, and Teive all take turns keeping Arithon awake to maintain Alithiel's spell. At the edge of failure, he engages his gift of Shadow and flash freezes the iyats, then has them sealed into a pot. Before sleeping, he promises Fionn Areth that he will take him to the survivors of Tal Quorin.

Third Age 5671: When Lirenda spies upon the Evenstar, she observes Arithon experimenting with his captured iyats. She cannot cut off the connection before Arithon enspells an iyat directly into the Great Waystone. Arithon arranges to rejoin the Khetienn by using an iyat as a messenger and asks Feylind to sail on to Southshire. Brought ashore in Shand, Arithon and his party encounter Kyrialt and other clansmen out of Selkwood. Arithon wagers that he can rob a caravan of stolen amethysts, a tribute to the Light, and silk for Glendien's wedding gift without bloodshed. With a spell of diversion from Dakar and distraction from clan darts, Arithon commands his captured iyats to successfully rob the caravan. Returning to camp, he obtains permission from Erlien s'Taleyn to address his clan elders. When Elaira seeks him out from Whitehaven through her quartz crystal, he is alone by the River Hanhaffin. Their reunion is interrupted by Glendien, who fears that she will lose Kyrialt in the upcoming conflict. Recognizing that Glendien had a father lost in the Vastmark campaign, Arithon apologizes and offers to foster the false impression of attempted rape so Kyrialt will remain safe at home.

When Talvish and Vhandon assume that Arithon attempted to rape Glendien, he does not protest the assumption. His plan backfires after Glendien tells the truth about the encounter. As a result, Erlien forces Arithon to accept Kyrialt's oath of fealty to the crown of Rathain. Alland's clansmen are also convinced to back Arithon without the formality of a hearing. Arithon performs at Kyrialt and Glendien's bridal feast in his role as Masterbard. Afterwards, he writes plans for Kyrialt and departs for Telzen. He and Dakar separate from Vhandon, Talvish, and Fionn Areth, with the double under Rathain's crown protection through Arithon's intent to avoid Koriani interference.

Arithon and Dakar cross paths with the previously robbed caravan, posing as a bard and button seller. Arithon invents a catchy satire about the religion of Light which he hopes will spread into Southshire when the robbed men reach town. The pair rendezvous with a merchant brig to enact the next phase of Arithon's plan to defang sunwheel recruitment efforts and travel along the southcoast. In Southshire, Arithon causes a riot over spoiled wine distributed by sunwheel recruiters. In Shaddorn, Arithon composes a satire about the resulting riots and eventually accept a galley ride to Telzen.

In the summer, Arithon performs in the taverns of Alestron in disguise, intending to seed fear about the durability of the keep's defenses. Dame Dawr arranges for him to perform for the s'Brydion brothers and their wives. He warns them that he has forseen their deaths and urges them to dismantle Alestron. He reveals his plan to bring peace between clansmen and townsfolk and accept kingship in Rathain.

Give me Havish, Melhalla, Shand, and Rathain, free from clan strife and predation, and Tysan becomes a backwater pocket. Her merchants will be helplessly landlocked by winter if High King Eldir will seal amity and join force with me, and impose a stiff policy of port sanctions![1]

After the s'Brydion refusal, Arithon formally severs the alliance originally started during the Vastmark campaign. He travels to Atwood to present his plan to Teiren's'Callient and finds that Traithe has traveled there to warn of encroaching necromancy in Etarra, Darkling, and Jaelot. Arithon realizes that he will not have the time to enact his plans in the south, and the backlash from routing necromancy will again fall on his reputation. Traithe teaches him the keys to the focus circle at Tirans Ruins so he can still visit the clans in Halwythwood before traveling to Etarra. Traithe also convinces him to learn more about necromancy. Forced to break his promise to Fionn Areth yet again, he leaves the boy in the company of Vhandon and Talvish.

In Halwythwood, Arithon goads a hostile Jeynsa into attacking him and then enacts a blood oath of protection as he promised Jieret. In spite of his understand of her pain, Jeynsa refuses to drink a guest oath with the prince, choosing to flee the tent instead. After the rejected guest oath, Arithon formally reports Jieret's death to Feithan. Before he can retire, he must also accept Barach's oath of fealty. Exhausted, he loses control on his prismatic farsight but still manages to complete the oath-giving. Elaira arrives to care for him in the aftermath. When Arithon awakens, the reunited pair search for potential Koriani traps in Elaira's being. Arithon discovers that any consummation of their love will enact a completion of Rathain's higher mysteries. He takes Elaira into the forest using his sovereign tie to the land to enforce privacy, unaware that Selidie plots to enslave his unborn heir. Their consummation is arrested through the efforts of Kharadmon and Dakar who breach Arithon's wards and prevent Selidie's trap from springing. Because Arithon is still ritually fused to the land, Dakar's intervention is needed to unleash the grand confluence. Selidie's trap, which would have caused conception in Elaira and forced Arithon to father a child on every woman in the future, is revealed in the aftermath.

Arithon coordinates the timing for the purge of the Kralovir with Kharadmon before departing, leaving an address behind for Dakar. He travels to Etarra and disguises himself as a blind old bard, gaining a reputation in town for the vibrancy of his music. He places a bet that his music can cure High Chancellor Raiett Raven's insomnia. When Dakar arrives in town, Arithon (in disguise) orders him to visit Simshane's House of Exotic Delights. After the errand, Arithon reveals that the girl children were sold earlier to necromancers but the boys will be saved by his plans. He enspells a load of sunwheel tribute gold to look like simple granite and gains an invitation to perform at a gathering of sunwheel priests. Once the gold has been used by Dakar to purchase young boys, an anonymous tip is sent to the Lord Marshal leading to a raid on Simshane's. Arithon puts the priests to sleep with his music and stages a scandalous scene with the young boys. He uses iyats to awaken the sunwheel party in full view of Etarra's elite and is taken by Raiett Raven's guard for questioning.

Arithon offers to cure Raiett Raven's insomnia but the offer is declined. A guard slices open his arm to drain him of resistance for the Kralovir and he is transported to a crypt under the governor's mansion. In a ritual two days later, his Named consciousness is separated and trapped. Instead of seeking Fellowship intercession, he falls back on his experience touching Paravian presence in Kewar Tunnel. The result destroys every single initiate master in the cult across the continent and frees the cult's coerced servants. Afterwards, Arithon asks Davien to transport him to Alland to salvage what he can of his plans for the clansmen. Davien agrees and sends him to the focus circle in the Sanpashir ruins.

References

  1. © Janny Wurts, Traitor's Knot, p. 399 (US-Hardback)