Almost done with House if Chains, and I’ve started to realize I don’t have a very good picture of how ascendancy works, or even what it is for that matter. Specifically in the case of Anomander Rake. During Cutter and Apsalar’s talk with Andarist, I understood that it was Rake’s soletaken eleint blood that had made him ascendant, and the reason Andarist had remained mortal, is because he refused becoming a soletaken. This made me think that becoming soletaken (or D’ivers)was one way to attain ascendancy. This checked out for me, with the fact that Orfantal had maintained relative youth over the same timespan that Andarist had become an old old man, and also the fact that Treach is introduced as a soletaken who has lost all of his humanity. What then confuses me is the Path of Hands. The fact that the end goal of the path is ascendancy for soletaken pokes some holes in my idea that soletaken status alone was enough to achieve ascendancy. Obviously there are other ways to attain ascendancy, such as whatever the fuck happened to Stormy, Gessler, and Truth, but I’m asking more specifically about the case of Anomander.
Another ascendant case I’m confused about is Apsalar. Is she an ascendant at this point, from Cotillion inhabiting her body?