|<< The Way of Kings / TWoK Prologue: To Kill >>|
|Prelude to The Stormlight Archive|
Point of view: Kalak (4,500 years before Prologue)
Setting: A large battlefield in the aftermath of a great battle.
Kalak, one of the ten Heralds, wanders through a torn landscape littered with dead humans, thunderclasts and other beasts. He is traveling to the Heralds' preordained meeting place (a rocky spire) for those who survived the Desolation.
Upon arrival, he finds only their leader, Jezrien, waiting for him. At first, Kalak assumes that the other eight must have died, for the battle was "furious". However, he notices that seven Honorblades had been driven point-first into the ground at the base of the spire. Jezrien then informs Kalak that the other Heralds have departed, abandoning the Oathpact. Kalak then admits to Jezrien that he can't return to "the place of nightmares", the waiting place of the Heralds between Desolations. Jezrein then tells Kalak to relinquish his blade as well, for " ... it is time for the Oathpact to end." This effectively leaves Talenel, the only Herald who was killed in the battle, alone to uphold the Oathpact and the sole sufferer of the pain and torture in the waiting realm.
Kalak is horrified and disturbed that both Jezrien and himself have been broken by the cycle of Desolations and that they are too weak to face their suffering. They plan to lie and tell the people that they finally won against the "enemy", and hopes that it might even turn out to be true. Their abandonment of mankind is somewhat diluted by the fact that Ishar, another Herald, believes that " ... so long as there is one of us still bound to the Oathpact (i.e., Talenel), it may be enough. There is a chance we might end the cycle of Desolations." Jezrien points out that man also has the Radiants.
Finally, both Jezrien and Kalak summon their Blades and slam them into the ground along with the other seven. They depart following opposite directions along the barren lanscape, vowing to go their own ways and to not seek one another, or any other of the Heralds. As Kalak is leaving the ring of swords, he looks back and notices a single open spot, "The place where the tenth sword should have gone." Kalak feels a deep sorrow and shame for Talenel's exclusion and thinks, "Forgive us ... ", then leaves.
|Kalak||POV||Is broken by the constant cycles of Desolation and abandons the Oathpact.|
|Jezrien||Appeared||Informs Kalak that the other Heralds have abandoned the Oathpact.|
|Talenel||Mentioned||Only Herald to die during this Desolation.|
|Ishar||Mentioned||Believes one being bound to the Oathpact might be enough.|