The name of the wind, p.1
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       The Name of the Wind, p.1
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         Part #1 of The Kingkiller Chronicle series by Patrick Rothfuss
The Name of the Wind


  THE NAME OF THE WIND

  THE NAME OF THE WIND

  THE KINGKILLER CHRONICLE DAY ONE

  PATRICK ROTHFUSS

  DAW BOOKS, INC.

  DONALD A. WOLLHEIM, FOUNDER

  375 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014

  ELIZABETH R. WOLLHEIM

  SHEILA E. GILBERT

  PUBLISHERS

  http://www.dawbooks.com

  Copyright © 2007 by Patrick Rothfuss

  All rights reserved.

  Jacket art by Donato.

  DAW Books Collectors No. 1396.

  DAW Books are distributed by Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

  Maps by Nathan Taylor www.king-sheep.com

  All characters and events in this book are fictitious.

  All resemblance to persons living or dead is coincidental.

  ISBN: 1-101-14716-4

  The scanning, uploading and distribution of this book via the Internet or any other means without the permission of the publisher is illegal, and punishable by law. Please purchase only authorized electronic editions, and do not participate in or encourage the electronic piracy of copyrighted materials. Your support of the author’s rights is appreciated.

  DAW TRADEMARK REGISTERED

  U.S. PAT. OFF. AND FOREIGN COUNTRIES

  —MARCA REGISTRADA

  HECHO EN U.S.A.

  To my mother, who taught me to love books and opened the door to Narnia, Pern, and Middle Earth.

  And to my father, who taught me that if I was going to do something, I should take my time and do it right.

  Contents

  ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

  PROLOGUE

  A Silence of Three Parts

  CHAPTER ONE

  A Place for Demons

  CHAPTER TWO

  A Beautiful Day

  CHAPTER THREE

  Wood and Word

  CHAPTER FOUR

  Halfway to Newarre

  CHAPTER FIVE

  Notes

  CHAPTER SIX

  The Price of Remembering

  CHAPTER SEVEN

  Of Beginnings and the Names of Things

  CHAPTER EIGHT

  Thieves, Heretics, and Whores

  CHAPTER NINE

  Riding in the Wagon with Ben

  CHAPTER TEN

  Alar and Several Stones

  CHAPTER ELEVEN

  The Binding of Iron

  CHAPTER TWELVE

  Puzzle Pieces Fitting

  CHAPTER THIRTEEN

  Interlude—Flesh with Blood Beneath

  CHAPTER FOURTEEN

  The Name of the Wind

  CHAPTER FIFTEEN

  Distractions and Farewells

  CHAPTER SIXTEEN

  Hope

  CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

  Interlude—Autumn

  CHAPTER EIGHTEEN

  Roads to Safe Places

  CHAPTER NINETEEN

  Fingers and Strings

  CHAPTER TWENTY

  Bloody Hands Into Stinging Fists

  CHAPTER TWENTY-ONE

  Basement, Bread and Bucket

  CHAPTER TWENTY-TWO

  A Time for Demons

  CHAPTER TWENTY-THREE

  The Burning Wheel

  CHAPTER TWENTY-FOUR

  Shadows Themselves

  CHAPTER TWENTY-FIVE

  Interlude—Eager for Reasons

  CHAPTER TWENTY-SIX

  Lanre Turned

  CHAPTER TWENTY-SEVEN

  His Eyes Unveiled

  CHAPTER TWENTY-EIGHT

  Tehlu’s Watchful Eye

  CHAPTER TWENTY-NINE

  The Doors of My Mind

  CHAPTER THIRTY

  The Broken Binding

  CHAPTER THIRTY-ONE

  The Nature of Nobility

  CHAPTER THIRTY-TWO

  Coppers, Cobblers and Crowds

  CHAPTER THIRTY-THREE

  A Sea of Stars

  CHAPTER THIRTY-FOUR

  Yet to Learn

  CHAPTER THIRTY-FIVE

  A Parting of Ways

  CHAPTER THIRTY-SIX

  Less Talents

  CHAPTER THIRTY-SEVEN

  Bright-Eyed

  CHAPTER THIRTY-EIGHT

  Sympathy in the Mains

  CHAPTER THIRTY-NINE

  Enough Rope

  CHAPTER FORTY

  On the Horns

  CHAPTER FORTY-ONE

  Friend’s Blood

  CHAPTER FORTY-TWO

  Bloodless

  CHAPTER FORTY-THREE

  The Flickering Way

  CHAPTER FORTY-FOUR

  The Burning Glass

  CHAPTER FORTY-FIVE

  Interlude—Some Tavern Tale

  CHAPTER FORTY-SIX

  The Ever-Changing Wind

  CHAPTER FORTY-SEVEN

  Barbs

  CHAPTER FORTY-EIGHT

  Interlude—A Silence of a Different Kind

  CHAPTER FORTY-NINE

  The Nature of Wild Things

  CHAPTER FIFTY

  Negotiations

  CHAPTER FIFTY-ONE

  Tar and Tin

  CHAPTER FIFTY-TWO

  Burning

  CHAPTER FIFTY-THREE

  Slow Circles

  CHAPTER FIFTY-FOUR

  A Place to Burn

  CHAPTER FIFTY-FIVE

  Flame and Thunder

  CHAPTER FIFTY-SIX

  Patrons, Maids and Metheglin

  CHAPTER FIFTY-SEVEN

  Interlude—The Parts that Form Us

  CHAPTER FIFTY-EIGHT

  Names for Beginning

  CHAPTER FIFTY-NINE

  All This Knowing

  CHAPTER SIXTY

  Fortune

  CHAPTER SIXTY-ONE

  Jackass, Jackass

  CHAPTER SIXTY-TWO

  Leaves

  CHAPTER SIXTY-THREE

  Walking and Talking

  CHAPTER SIXTY-FOUR

  Nine in the Fire

  CHAPTER SIXTY-FIVE

  Spark

  CHAPTER SIXTY-SIX

  Volatile

  CHAPTER SIXTY-SEVEN

  A Matter of Hands

  CHAPTER SIXTY-EIGHT

  The Ever-Changing Wind

  CHAPTER SIXTY-NINE

  Wind or Women’s Fancy

  CHAPTER SEVENTY

  Signs

  CHAPTER SEVENTY-ONE

  Strange Attraction

  CHAPTER SEVENTY-TWO

  Borrorill

  CHAPTER SEVENTY-THREE

  Pegs

  CHAPTER SEVENTY-FOUR

  Waystone

  CHAPTER SEVENTY-FIVE

  Interlude—Obedience

  CHAPTER SEVENTY-SIX

  The Mating Habits of the Common Draccus

  CHAPTER SEVENTY-SEVEN

  Bluffs

  CHAPTER SEVENTY-EIGHT

  Poison

  CHAPTER SEVENTY-NINE

  Sweet Talk

  CHAPTER EIGHTY

  Touching Iron

  CHAPTER EIGHTY-ONE

  Pride

  CHAPTER EIGHTY-TWO

  Ash and Elm…

  CHAPTER EIGHTY-THREE

  Return

  CHAPTER EIGHTY-FOUR

  A Sudden Storm

  CHAPTER EIGHTY-FIVE

  Hands Against Me

  CHAPTER EIGHTY-SIX

  The Fire Itself

  CHAPTER EIGHTY-SEVEN

  Winter

  CHAPTER EIGHTY-EIGHT

  Interlude—Looking

  CHAPTER EIGHTY-NINE

  A Pleasant Afternoon

  CHAPTER NINETY

  Half-Built Houses

  CHAPTER NINETY-ONE

  Worthy of Pursuit

  CHAPTER NINETY-TWO

&n
bsp; The Music that Plays

  EPILOGUE

  A Silence of Three Parts

  Acknowledgments

  To…

  …all the readers of my early drafts. You are legion, too many to name, but not too many to love. I kept writing because of your encouragement. I kept improving because of your criticism. If not for you, I would not have won…

  …the Writers of the Future contest. If not for their workshop, I would never have met my wonderful anthology-mates from volume 18 or…

  …Kevin J. Anderson. If not for his advice, I would never have ended up with…

  …Matt Bialer, the best of agents. If not for his guidance, I would never have sold the book to…

  …Betsy Wolheim, beloved editor and president of DAW. If not for her, you would not be holding this book. A similar book, perhaps, but this book would not exist.

  And, lastly, to Mr. Bohage, my high school history teacher. In 1989 I told him I’d mention him in my first novel. I keep my promises.

  PROLOGUE

  A Silence of Three Parts

  IT WAS NIGHT AGAIN. The Waystone Inn lay in silence, and it was a silence of three parts.

  The most obvious part was a hollow, echoing quiet, made by things that were lacking. If there had been a wind it would have sighed through the trees, set the inn’s sign creaking on its hooks, and brushed the silence down the road like trailing autumn leaves. If there had been a crowd, even a handful of men inside the inn, they would have filled the silence with conversation and laughter, the clatter and clamor one expects from a drinking house during the dark hours of night. If there had been music…but no, of course there was no music. In fact there were none of these things, and so the silence remained.

  Inside the Waystone a pair of men huddled at one corner of the bar. They drank with quiet determination, avoiding serious discussions of troubling news. In doing this they added a small, sullen silence to the larger, hollow one. It made an alloy of sorts, a counterpoint.

  The third silence was not an easy thing to notice. If you listened for an hour, you might begin to feel it in the wooden floor underfoot and in the rough, splintering barrels behind the bar. It was in the weight of the black stone hearth that held the heat of a long dead fire. It was in the slow back and forth of a white linen cloth rubbing along the grain of the bar. And it was in the hands of the man who stood there, polishing a stretch of mahogany that already gleamed in the lamplight.

  The man had true-red hair, red as flame. His eyes were dark and distant, and he moved with the subtle certainty that comes from knowing many things.

  The Waystone was his, just as the third silence was his. This was appropriate, as it was the greatest silence of the three, wrapping the others inside itself. It was deep and wide as autumn’s ending. It was heavy as a great river-smooth stone. It was the patient, cut-flower sound of a man who is waiting to die.

  CHAPTER ONE

  A Place for Demons

  IT WAS FELLING NIGHT, and the usual crowd had gathered at the Waystone Inn. Five wasn’t much of a crowd, but five was as many as the Waystone ever saw these days, times being what they were.

  Old Cob was filling his role as storyteller and advice dispensary. The men at the bar sipped their drinks and listened. In the back room a young innkeeper stood out of sight behind the door, smiling as he listened to the details of a familiar story.

  “When he awoke, Taborlin the Great found himself locked in a high tower. They had taken his sword and stripped him of his tools: key, coin, and candle were all gone. But that weren’t even the worst of it, you see…” Cob paused for effect, “…cause the lamps on the wall were burning blue!”

  Graham, Jake, and Shep nodded to themselves. The three friends had grown up together, listening to Cob’s stories and ignoring his advice.

  Cob peered closely at the newer, more attentive member of his small audience, the smith’s prentice. “Do you know what that meant, boy?” Everyone called the smith’s prentice “boy” despite the fact that he was a hand taller than anyone there. Small towns being what they are, he would most likely remain “boy” until his beard filled out or he bloodied someone’s nose over the matter.

  The boy gave a slow nod. “The Chandrian.”

  “That’s right,” Cob said approvingly. “The Chandrian. Everyone knows that blue fire is one of their signs. Now he was—”

  “But how’d they find him?” the boy interrupted. “And why din’t they kill him when they had the chance?”

  “Hush now, you’ll get all the answers before the end,” Jake said. “Just let him tell it.”

  “No need for all that, Jake,” Graham said. “Boy’s just curious. Drink your drink.”

  “I drank me drink already,” Jake grumbled. “I need t’nother but the innkeep’s still skinning rats in the back room.” He raised his voice and knocked his empty mug hollowly on the top of the mahogany bar. “Hoy! We’re thirsty men in here!”

  The innkeeper appeared with five bowls of stew and two warm, round loaves of bread. He pulled more beer for Jake, Shep, and Old Cob, moving with an air of bustling efficiency.

  The story was set aside while the men tended to their dinners. Old Cob tucked away his bowl of stew with the predatory efficiency of a lifetime bachelor. The others were still blowing steam off their bowls when he finished the last of his loaf and returned to his story.

  “Now Taborlin needed to escape, but when he looked around, he saw his cell had no door. No windows. All around him was nothing but smooth, hard stone. It was a cell no man had ever escaped.

  “But Taborlin knew the names of all things, and so all things were his to command. He said to the stone: ‘Break!’ and the stone broke. The wall tore like a piece of paper, and through that hole Taborlin could see the sky and breathe the sweet spring air. He stepped to the edge, looked down, and without a second thought he stepped out into the open air….”

  The boy’s eyes went wide. “He didn’t!”

  Cob nodded seriously. “So Taborlin fell, but he did not despair. For he knew the name of the wind, and so the wind obeyed him. He spoke to the wind and it cradled and caressed him. It bore him to the ground as gently as a puff of thistledown and set him on his feet softly as a mother’s kiss.

  “And when he got to the ground and felt his side where they’d stabbed him, he saw that it weren’t hardly a scratch. Now maybe it was just a piece of luck,” Cob tapped the side of his nose knowingly. “Or maybe it had something to do with the amulet he was wearing under his shirt.”

  “What amulet?” the boy asked eagerly through a mouthful of stew.

  Old Cob leaned back on his stool, glad for the chance to elaborate. “A few days earlier, Taborlin had met a tinker on the road. And even though Taborlin didn’t have much to eat, he shared his dinner with the old man.”

  “Right sensible thing to do,” Graham said quietly to the boy. “Everyone knows: ‘A tinker pays for kindness twice.’”

  “No no,” Jake grumbled. “Get it right: ‘A tinker’s advice pays kindness twice.’”

  The innkeeper spoke up for the first time that night. “Actually, you’re missing more than half,” he said, standing in the doorway behind the bar.

  “A tinker’s debt is always paid:

  Once for any simple trade.

  Twice for freely-given aid.

  Thrice for any insult made.”

  The men at the bar seemed almost surprised to see Kote standing there. They’d been coming to the Waystone every Felling night for months and Kote had never interjected anything of his own before. Not that you could expect anything else, really. He’d only been in town for a year or so. He was still a stranger. The smith’s prentice had lived here since he was eleven, and he was still referred to as “that Rannish boy,” as if Rannish were some foreign country and not a town less than thirty miles away.

  “Just something I heard once,” Kote said to fill the silence, obviously embarrassed.

  Old Cob nodded before he cleared his throat and launche
d back into the story. “Now this amulet was worth a whole bucket of gold nobles, but on account of Taborlin’s kindness, the tinker sold it to him for nothing but an iron penny, a copper penny, and a silver penny. It was black as a winter night and cold as ice to touch, but so long as it was round his neck, Taborlin would be safe from the harm of evil things. Demons and such.”

  “I’d give a good piece for such a thing these days,” Shep said darkly. He had drunk most and talked least over the course of the evening. Everyone knew that something bad had happened out on his farm last Cendling night, but since they were good friends they knew better than to press him for the details. At least not this early in the evening, not as sober as they were.

  “Aye, who wouldn’t?” Old Cob said judiciously, taking a long drink.

  “I din’t know the Chandrian were demons,” the boy said. “I’d heard—”

  “They ain’t demons,” Jake said firmly. “They were the first six people to refuse Tehlu’s choice of the path, and he cursed them to wander the corners—”

 
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