The Dragon Reborn - Prologue [#100Days, Day 74]

War of Words

    Book three starts with Pedron Niall, the Lord Captain Commander of the Children of the Light, interviewing survivors of his men at Falme.  Child Byar, late of Geofram Bornhald's legion is the first; giving a direct, soldier's take on the situation.  Niall's conversation with Jaichim Carridin is more interesting.

    ... Carridin smiled.  "I promise you, I will be successful before summer."

    Niall nodded.  The man was confident, now.  Sure the dangerous questions would already have come, if they were coming.  You should have remembered, Carridin, I was accounted a fine tactician.  "Why," he said quietly, "did you not take your own forces to Falme?  With Darkfriends on Toman Head, an army of them holding Falme, why did you try to stop Bornhald?"

Carridin and Niall, The Dragon Reborn, p. xxi

    The battle of wits and words goes on, with Niall outmaneuvering Carridin, binding him into a corner to support Niall's initiative to keep the Dragon Reborn alive until he commands his death.

    Niall smiled a cold smile.  "In case you oath is not strong enough, know this.  If this false Dragon dies before I command his death, or if he is taken by the Tar Valon witches, you will be found one morning with a dagger in your heart.  And should any ... accident ... befall me - even if I should die of old age - you will not survive me the month."

Pedron Niall, The Dragon Reborn, p. xxiii

    Carridin's confident smirk is shattered as he finds himself bound tightly to Niall's purpose.  Niall's ability to plan and then to capitalize on broken plans, assists him in dealing with the overconfident subordinate.  Niall capitalizes on the crisis in Falme to find another option to gain a larger foothold in the region, and turn a likely rival to his cause (albeit by force).  I've used the delayed strike tactic myself; avoiding the true topic until much later in the conversation, after the other person perceives the confrontation passing.  It catches the other person somewhat flat footed, the responses prepared to block the expected confrontation are forgotten and joint work on solutions begins.  Never attack an entrenched position: arguing with people generally just doesn't help.  Talking about their kids, their dogs, hobbies, anything really  draws them outside their entrenched area and leaves them open to the strikes of reason and logic to build solutions.

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