I might be crazy for thinking this, (and I NEVER post theories generally) but I'm wondering if anyone else finished A Fire in the Flesh and was convinced that the Blood and Ash and Flesh and Fire series' are connected to Fall of Ruin and Wrath. There were a couple things in Ruin and Wrath that had me wondering, but A Fire in the Flesh just further cemented the theory for me.
Here are a few things that popped out to me.
Before I continue though, I want to point out by saying that while I think they are connected, I don't think they are the same world, but rather part of the same universe.
No overlapping, but just under the same umbrella.
The events in Ruin and Wrath won't affect the events in Blood and Ash and Flesh and Fire and vise versa.
Obviously, there are spoilers below for all three book series.
1. Jennifer wrote the words "ruin and wrath" in the same sentence a quite a few times in the last 25% of A Fire in the Flesh.
Both books mention the fall of a civilization far more advanced. Thorne tells Calista "The world before this one? The world that fell? It was so much more advanced. Buildings that stretched as tall as mountains. Food was rarely hunted, but raised or engineered. Cities that were connected by roads and bridges that spanned miles. Streets that were clogged with powered vehicles instead of carriages, and steel cages that took to the air, transporting people across the seas." Which is pretty interesting when you compare it to Sera's visions during her ascension. “I heard the names they were called, both here and beyond, in unfamiliar lands full of towering cities and steel beasts.” and "They would boil the rivers and turn the seas to deserts, laying utter waste to sprawling stone kingdoms and toppling those great steel cities in distant lands."
The creation of the ancients that Sera "sees" during her ascension is pretty close to how deminyens are created. In A Fire in the Flesh, Ancients are stars that landed and buried themselves in the soil of barren lands. As the land heals, the stars feed the land, which leads to sprouts, and trees. The stars are fed and nurtured by the roots of the trees they created, until they became as strong as the trees, and rise to the surface as ancients. In Ruin and Wrath, deminyens awake as a consciousness below the soil. Their bones are forged from the rock deep in the ground as their flesh is carved from stone. They are nurtured by the roots of a Wychwood tree for years, creating their organs and filling their veins. They are not born. They are created. Thorne tells Calista that he is a part of everything. Aside from the fact that in both these series, the ancients and deminyens are created and nurtured by the trees - which is just too similar to be a coincidence in my opinion - but if the ancients were the very stars that created the land - aren't the ancients also everything?
This brings me to the Wychwoods themselves! Also eerily similar to the Blood Forest, considering the trees bleed. There is a difference. In Ruin and Wrath, the Wychwoods comes to fruition from the stars landing in barren lands, eventually growing into sprouts and trees, that in turn, nuture the buried stars, until they grow into deminyens. They are literally made from the earth and fed by the tree. They share a lifeforce - blood. In FBAA, the actual Blood Forest is created by the spilled blood of the gods. But what if they are connected through the cycle of life. The Wychwood created the deminyens (that I think are the ancients that Sera saw in her ascension). The primals and gods, having the blood of the ancients in them, create more trees with their lifeforce - blood.
Eye color. Deminyens have multicolored eyes. Irises that contain blots of blues, greens, and browns. They swirl with different thoughts and emotions. At other times, white specks will appear that look like stars in their eyes. Which is very similar to the ancients Sera describes with their ever-changing eyes, don't you think?
In Flesh and Fire, Sera describes the ancients as being proud and happy after creating the Primals, who in turn create mortals, but they become angry when they see the mortals start destroying their first creation, which is the land itself. Most go to the soil to rest. Some stayed to make sure that it is always known that there has to be a balance. Life must continue and death always comes. (* I have a theory on this below). Furthermore, we know that Primals have to go to ground and sleep every so often so they don't go insane. If they go to sleep too late in the process, it's irreversible even in sleep. In Ruin and Wrath, Thorne tells Calista that when the deminyens separated themselves from mortals, they started losing their compassion, and became more unpredictable and violent. They went to ground, hoping it would bring back those feelings. While it works for some, most are too angry with the mortals for the destruction of the realm and are much the same. Again, this is too similar to be a coincidence.
My theory in a theory - the ancients that stayed awake to make sure that balance must always be obtained, that life must continue and death always comes, as seen by Sera during her ascension - sure does sound like the fates, don't they? That is what the fates do, after all. While Calista in Ruin and Wrath doesn't believe in fate, how else does she have intuition? How can she see what is to come, if it's not already predetermined by the fates?
Here is a quote by Thorne in Ruin and Wrath : “Either way, the Deminyens were ancient, Calista. As old as the realm itself. They were here when the first mortal was given life, and I imagine we will be here long after the last passes.” The word ancient is italicized. Why is it emphasized?
FBAA and FAF have heartmates. They can make each other more powerful, while also being each other's greatest weakness. In Ruin and Wrath, there is ny'chora. Big difference here is that while heartmates are rare, all Deminyens have a bonded mortal - a ny'seraph - someone who grounds them and keeps them humane. But they are similar in the fact that they are both a great strength and biggest weaknesses. A primal can only be killed by someone they truly love. Deminyens, I assume by the fact that their ny'chora is their greatest weakness, can also end them. We don't have enough information on this yet.
Sera see's that both the eather, the essence, had comes from the stars that fallen eons ago. I don't remember the word essence being used in the blood and ash or flesh and fire series. I could definitely be wrong on that, but I don't remember it. It is used in Ruin and Wrath. Just like I don't remember eather being used in Ruin and Wrath, but its used in FBAA and FAF. In Sera's ascension, she uses both words, and says they are from the same thing.
Deminyens (Ruin and Wrath) and Primals/Gods (FBaA/FaF) have an animal form. Thorne is a raven - or multiple ravens really. Nyktos is a wolf, Sera, and their sons are cave cats, etc ... Also, did you notice that ny'chora is the word used to describe a bonded mortal to a deminyen, but in Fire in the Flesh, we learn that the primal's animal forms are called chora?
There is probably other things that I could pick up on if I did a full reread. Perhaps it is in the cards in the future. I just found it all stood out to me, and I wasn't expecting it. I love the idea that these books - and perhaps more of her books, who knows - all exist in the same universe or multiverse. I think this is further proven when Sera, once again, during her ascension, see's beyond her realm. "Cracking heart flooded my limbs as I heard the names they were called, both here and beyond, in unfamiliar lands full of towers cities and steel beasts."
When I posted this theory on JLAnders, Jennifer's facebook page, it got a lot of love, and some other fans picked up on other things I either forgot about, or completely missed.
Melissa S. picked up that when Sera and Nyktos dream walk for the second time, when Nyktos tells Sera he remembers what he saw in their first dream, remembered what Kolis and Kyn told Nyktos while he was in stasis, lines form on Nyktos's face, forming a design, that reminds Sera of vines that she see's on the throne room doors, and the god's tunics - Rhain's tunic. Melissa said it made her think of Thorne's markings on his face - something I completely forgot about. This is an amazing catch!
Jan NY picked up on the milky white blades made from bones of the ancients. In Wrath and Ruin, they are described as milky white blades called lunea - the only thing that can pierce the skin of a deminyen. We know that these immobilize the deminyen. We see Thorne passed out on a table when he is pierced through with several of them. Funny that that the very thing that also immobilizes gods and Primals is another milky white weapon - the bones of the ancients.
Before you say Jennifer said in a live that these books were not connected and she wasn't doing a multiverse - I know. I know she said that. I also know she said that before A Fire in the Flesh came out. If they are in fact, connected, why would she give that information away before A Fire in the Flesh came out? My honest feelings on this, is I believe these books are connected. While I don't think one story will affect the other, I do think they are the same world. I think Fall of Ruin and Wrath is a prequel. The story of the ancients we hear so much about.
There is just TOO MANY similarities for it not to be.
But what do you think?
Did you pick up on anything I missed?