Well I'll start by saying the DO didn't "win," so much as he has managed to prevent his own loss. He is the father of lies. By convincing Rand that he is, in fact, required for the choice between good and evil, he is basically preventing his own death, thus insuring the continuation of the circle until he might actually win some day. I find that turn of events... Refreshing. Now, while LTT was indeed a scholar in the age of legends (or so I was told), he lived most of his life with no knowledge of the DO at all. The writers of the BWB had, so RJ said, vast knowledge, including things that were known during the age of legends. Now, they were mere theorists, but they still had knowledge of probably hundreds, if not thousands of years of knowledge of a world influenced by the DO. Rand's knowledge by himself was very limited to basically nothing concerning the DO. Everything he learned was from books of theories, prophecies and Aes Sedai. Those are the same Aes Sedai who thought, for example, that the heroes of the horn would fight for the shadow as well, should they be called by a darkfriend blowing the horn. In other words, he had very limited knowledge about the nature of the DO, so did LTT. The writers of the BWB had a vast knowledge, AND they had resources of research from previous theorists. The best example I gave in the other thread was Harrid Fel - he was Rand's best source of information on the DO, his prison, etc. He was a theorists, I assume one much like those who wrote the BWB, and we know for a fact that Rand indeed listened to him about clearing LTT's seals before attempting to reseal the prison. LTT lived most of his life without the DO at all, as he was sealed. If we accept that while the DO is sealed he is unable to touch the pattern, then I fail to see how he can be required for a choice, since we KNOW that people did bad things during the age of legends even before he was rediscovered. So there are two options - either he can effect the world even when he's sealed, which goes against everything we've been told in the books, or he simply has nothing to do with the choice. Now, the authors of the BWB indeed described something like this (I brought the quote in the other thread), saying that the DO doesn't MAKE people evil, he just "enhances" their evil and pushing them towards it. We see this during the book many times - people can choose for themselves if they want to follow the light or be evil, but once they've chosen the DO, their choice becomes limited. So saying that the DO "gives people the choice" makes no sense to me, when all along the books it was the exact opposite - people following him had LESS choices then other people. Another example someone gave (not mine, but I liked it) was the evil of Aridhol, or the whole plot with Fain. The evil of Shadar Logoth started BECAUSE of the DO, but it was AGAINST him, not choosing him. It was so against him, that we've seen it used against him in the cleansing of Saidin and the half healing of Rand's wounds. If the DO is the SOURCE of evil, the SOURCE of the choice, then how can there be an evil opposite it's own? Would there now be a choice between 3 options? Does that mean there could be also another choice for good except the maker? What if Rand would have killed the DO but Fain would have survived? Is he not evil? Could people not choose to support him? Those are important questions that no one seems to be able to give me a logical answer to. Then we have Rand himself, while battling the DO. The fight was most likely no more then a few hours, and the part after he discovered the DO's lie was probably very short, which means there wasn't a lot of time to think about everything. And we know that he's been wrong before, during this very battle - when he first encountered the DO, he thought that the DO can't be killed at all, because he's too strong. We know from a later scene that he was, in fact, wrong, and that he COULD have technically kill the DO, should he choose. All in all, there are just too many things that don't "add up" for me. I can't point at one thing and say "that's it," it's more a combination of information, things that contradict previous information in the books, things that make little sense... I hope that made sense to you. That's the core of my theory.