Iron Flame Theory: How come that Violet and Xaden share dreams?

Iron Flame Theory: How come that Violet and Xaden share dreams?

In Iron Flame, Xaden and Violet share dreams of venin. Or at least this is how it looks like. We get to experience the dreams from Violet’s perspective but then, we learn at the very end of the book that it was Xaden that the venin wanted. It was him all along.

Xaden was the one told that he will turn for love and surprise, he does…at the very end of Iron Flame. That’s confusing right?

Welcome to my wildest theory so far. But hey, we’re all friends, right? Right? I hope so. Please don’t throw potatoes at me. Instead, grab your tin foil and go on a trip with me.

What do we know so far?

It’s fair to assume at this point that Xaden and Violet seem to be sharing the same dreams. But that is not right. It cannot be. First of all, Rebecca Yarros herself challenged this belief. Second, that’s not quite what happened in the book. So let’s revise a little bit and check what’s going on.

Nightmare 1

Faster. I have to run faster. Fear holds my throat shut as a tidal wave of death chases me across the sunburned field to where Tairn waits, his back turned.
“So disappointing,” he lectures, as if he’s my Sage and not the teacher of the dark wielder I killed on Tairn’s back.
[…]
“Death it is.” He looks so…disappointed as he lowers his hand.[…]

A scream tears through my body as a wave of agony rolls over my skin and bones, leaching the very essence of my energy until-
(Iron Flame, Chapter 22)

Let’s discuss. I want you to pay attention to several things as we go through the nightmare sequences.

I believe this is Violet’s nightmare. The ground is sunburned. She is talking about Tairn and Andarna (although we’ll get back to this as well). There is a thick maroon hood the venin is wearing.

The venin is “disappointed” the same way as Markham is disappointed that she is in the riders quadrant. Coincidence? Scribes have cream robes, the venin has a maroon one. Again, coincidence? Maybe.

Now let’s go back to Tairn. (Gold flickers near the tip of his wing) We are thinking Andarna right now. In this nightmare, it seems to be Andarna from Violet’s perspective. I don’t think it’s Andarna. I think it’s Tairn’s feathertail. I wrote a theory about Tairn and Sgaeyl and their potential hatchlings. Why would Andarna, now black (or else) in Iron Flame would ever be gold again?

If this were Xaden’s nightmare, wouldn’t he be thinking of Sgaeyl? Warning Sgaeyl? I think nightmare 1 is Violet’s. The venin is somehow communicating with her via her dreams. Terrifying!

Then let’s look at the last sentence. The venin is actively trying to drain Violet. Hmmm…This doesn’t seem to ever happen in Xaden’s nightmares.

Nightmare 2:

“Bold choice to move so far from what you perceive as the safety of the wards,” the Sage says, holding me immobile, my feet just inches from the frozen ground of my own personal torture chamber.
I’m trapped in this fucking nightmare again, but at least I made it farther across the sunburned field this time.
[…](Iron Flame, Chapter 37)

Check this out. The ground is now frozen. Interesting…She said she is trapped in the nightmare, but I don’t think this one is hers. She is somehow seeing Xaden’s nightmare.

Could it be because maybe Violet is somehow connected to the venin? Therefore, potentially having access to Venin mind collective? Or could it be that Violet herself is part venin? Now that is a theory for another time…

She says at least the made it further across the sunburned field. But it cannot be sunburned and also frozen.

This is also the first nightmare she has when she is right next to Xaden, beyond the wards. The first nightmare was when she was within the wards. Sounds exactly like that: a nightmare. Now that she is beyond the wards, the magic is a little wilder. Could it be that she actually has access to venin mind?

Nightmare 3:

I’m suspended again over that sunburned field, the death wave a heartbeat from overtaking me once the Sage releases me from his hold, and he will. He does it every time. […]“I grow weary of this. Now wield,” the Sage whispers, his robes purple tonight.[…] “The rest turn for the power,” […]

The temperature plummets, and my next exhale is visible in the frozen air. I blink and snow covers the ground. The only warmth is a quickly cooling trickle along my neck.

“And you won’t do it for something as trite as power or as easily satiable as greed,” he promises in a whisper, “but for the most illogical of mortal emotions— love. Or you’ll die.” He shrugs. “You both will.”(Iron Flame, Chapter 52)

Alright, this one is super tricky. Because she still talks about Tairn. But she is an observer somehow. She has to be. For several reasons. Again, she is suspended over the sunburned field, yet the temperature is well, very cold. The air is frozen. This venin has purple-robes. It’s not the same venin as in the first nightmare. Please notice that even Violet recognises the difference in robes colour.

And another very important detail here. The only warmth is a quickly cooling trickle along her neck. That’s sweat basically. She can feel the sweat in her dreams. Stay with this thought and read what is next.

Xaden’s POV:

“You strike. I block. You throw. I dodge.” He sighs, dragging his staff in the dirt behind him.
Just like my fucking nightmares.[…]Except the sweat dripping down the back of my neck reminds me that this is very much my reality.
“I told you once that you’d turn for love,” he says, holding his arms out. “And so you shall.”
“You know what will happen when you fail?” […]“I’ll step over your dead body and find her. Then I’ll wrap my hands around her delicate little neck—” […]“—and drain her.” (Iron Flame, Chapter 66)

Xaden can feel the sweat, and this is HOW he knows it’s reality. Interesting. In nightmare number 3, Violet pointed it out that she can feel the sweat. So, was that reality? For her, it was. She was the observer and not the dreamer. She was either observing the nightmare through Xaden’s eyes, or somehow being able to predict the future.

Sounds strange, right? Not quite. Remember when in Fourth Wing Jack Barlowe said precognition is not a thing? It might be. Whether is a second signet or some riders/dragons simply have this ability, I think precognition is a thing.

Alright, so going back to the first nightmare. Was that…real? I am not sure. It’s still very likely a possibility that she is seeing the future. The possibility of when one of the venin will come for her and try to drain her.

How come that Violet and Xaden share dreams?

I have several options for this. I’m not too sure which one is correct, but let’s discuss.

  1. Violet had the first nightmare, and the subsequent nightmares were all Xaden’s. She is therefore a type of observer for when she is right next to him. They shared emotions before so maybe he simply shares his dreams (not on purpose).
  2. Violet is an observer, as mentioned above because this is somehow her second signet. She can get into people’s dreams and see the future, communication whatever. Could be a good weapon if used strategically.
  3. Violet is connected to the venin. One way or another, I do think this is true. Whether she was just drained by venin, is immune to being drained by venin or is part venin herself. We don’t know enough yet. But she is definately connected to them. And the same way the hive mind works between venin and wyvern, maybe it works between all venin too.
  4. Venin have abilities in mindwork. They can simply slide into nightmares and work their magic. This way, they sort of shared nightmares but not really.
  5. Violet has the second signet of precognition. She can simply access this via her dreams right now. In which case, nightmare 1 is due to happen eventually and well, sadly, nightmare 3 already happened. It would be an interesting one. Could explain a few other things in Iron Flame as well.

How come that Violet and Xaden share dreams? They don’t. At least Xaden doesn’t know that. Violet might just be a dream walker, be connected to venin or simply have precognition as a second ability.

What do you think? Did you figure it out? Why are the dreams shared and how? Which option is the most plausible to you?

Share that Venin and Wyvern are real!

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15 responses to “Iron Flame Theory: How come that Violet and Xaden share dreams?”

  1. orrr, i have an idea. Maybe because Xadens signet was revealed to be intinnistic although I know he said it was intentions– what if somehow revealing that signet he kept so close ashamedly let Violet could be precognitive to combine and walk Xadens dream or the venins mind.

  2. I have another theory to add, what if the reason the sage can communicate with her is because of the poison? Maybe it was dark magic and not poison, making him connected to her subconsious in her sleep.

    1. That would be a pretty cool theory!

      1. While reading the dream sections of the book, I felt that maybe they aren’t just dreams but the venin are actually communicating to them through their dreams in real time. I think thats why the dreams feel so real. Because they are real. Each dream the venin are saying different things and often it is like they are saying what they are going to do to them. Unless Violet is having premonitions, how would she be able to dream up some of the things the venin say in her dreams before they happen? I haven’t gone back and reread parts to check this side theory so I would love to hear others thoughts.

        1. It’s difficult, isn’t it? I can’t tell. I think SHE is there. Xaden is not. Because he makes that comment with the sweat down his neck. I don’t know how is she there. Premonition? Very possible. I mean, remember Fourth Wing when Jack made fun of her?
          “Fuck off, Barlowe,” Rhiannon snaps.
          “I’m not the one who thinks precognition is a thing,” he retorts with a sneer.

          So…maybe it is a thing? Maybe is just Andarna’s thing? Or maybe it’s a whole thing.

          1. I feel like you are onto something here. I have only read the books once, so forgive me if I’m not connecting all the right dots, but here are my thoughts on the matter.

            I don’t think the aspect of manipulating time stuck with Vi like some people speculated. If that was the case why would Andarna tell Vi that she can no longer control time and ask her if she is mad at her because of it?

            Therefore, it needs to be another signet.
            We don’t really know what type of dragon Andarna is but she is the last / only one of her kind..as far as we know. So if precognition was never a thing in the past, that might very well be true. There was no dragon like Andarna in the past 600 years (if there was it was prolly erased from the archives by the scribe so no one would know at this point in time), so maybe she is the offspring of a dragon race that has the power to gift such a powerful signet. Maybe that is even the reason why she is the last of her kind.

            To me reading those nightmares felt like Violet sees a glimpse of the future, but not just her own. It’s like she can see her own fate and the fate of others as well through their eyes. That would explain why the surroundings are different each time, the colors of the robes, what is said. The scenarios change.

            Maybe this only works with Xaden..for now, cause of the strong bond they share, but if that is a signet then that can be trained and mastered.

            Maybe the venin are also trying to communicate with her in those moments, but she hasn’t learned how to respond yet / she doesn’t know that she can?

            ..and maybe she can not only do that with humans but also with venin. This is the part where we could potentially circle back to the theorys of Vi being linked to venin in some way.

            Also, my mind can’t let go of the god theory and all those parallels that Cory drew between the characters and the gods. If Vi embodies Zeus..and Zeus is also know to be a shapeshifter..which I agree would never fit the narrative of the series..then maybe this is Vi’s way of “shifting into or becoming” someone else.

            I know this is a wild one, but I’m looking forward to what you think.

          2. I don’t think the aspect of manipulating time stuck with Vi like some people speculated. >> Hmmm, it’s possible you know. But they do say that they can accidentally pass the gift of time to riders. I’m not entirely convinced, but it does feel like she can someone manipulate time. Not stop it, but manipulate it.

            I do feel like she can either see the future or walk in his dreams somehow right? They are def not just her dreams that much is clear (to me).

            Vi being linked to venin in some way.>> 1000% I feel she is def connected. I want to write a theory about it but I’m terrified that people will throw eggs at me haha

            Vi and Gods >> That is the only thing I’m uncertain of…the shapeshifting ability. As you said yourself, Zeus could shapeshift. Could it be that Vio can “shapeshift” into venin temporarily?
            Or could it be that she could shapeshift into a dragon? Or WHAT?

  3. Did anyone notice that in nightmare no. 2 the sage appears to be inntinistic? There is dialogue followed by inner monologue and when the sage speaks again he’s responding to the inner monologue (of who I agree is Xaden).

    Inner monologue-
    Im trapped in this fucking nightmare again, but at least I made it father across the sunburned field this time.

    “Of course, again,” the dark wielded hisses, his face contorting into a sneer.

    The sage also seems to allude to the coming battle at Basgiath in this dream scenario saying “and the longest night has yet to pass”.

    This makes me think this particular dream is not a premonition or a vision of the future but a real time dream communication between Venin/Xaden that Violet is observing. Or else she’s not observing from another vantage point at all but actually trapped in Xadens body and experiencing the dream from his perspective. “But it’s only my mind that knows this isn’t real. My body is very much locked into the illusion”.

    Kinda sort of like when she felt Xadens need, wants, desires when they were having sexy time on the throne…was that him letting her in or her accessing him?? Part of her second signet??!

    SO MANY UNANSWERED QUESTIONS !!

    1. SO MANY UNANSWERED QUESTIONS!!!

      But yes, I am starting to think this has something to do with her signet. You are right, the venin does feel inntinnsic. Replying to their inner monologue. And we know that Violet can truly feel the pain, the “sweat” in real time in those dreams. Xaden cannot (which we learn from his inner monologue POV chapter).

  4. I absolutely think Violet has precognition. First up, it’s such a perfect foreshadowing by Yarros in Fourth Wing to have Jack mock Violet over something she actually will develop eventually.
    But also, when Violet has jumped from Tairn and is falling through the sky onto Ridock’s dragon, her mind races through all her loved ones but it’s her mother’s face that comes up in her mind. It’s a point of high adenaline, the perfect time for a signet to flare and I think this is her predicting her mother’s death, she just doesn’t know it.
    And in terms of the signet representing what the person needs most, Violet needs to know facts – information – she’s done with people keeping secrets or holding stuff back. This is her way of knowing crucial information before and beyond anyone else.
    Plus it would trump Melgren’s signet and that would be awesome.

    1. Hi Sarah, I am with you here. “Plus it would trump Melgren’s signet and that would be awesome.” Exactly this. It wouldn’t matter rebellion relic or not. She could see what’s about to happen and prepare. Because that’s what is most useful to her: to be able to know when something will happen, to be prepared.
      And that’s what happened to Tairn as well, Jack really wanted Tairn, but Violet bonded him. It would make sense re precognition.

  5. Hi Cory, I’m a super fan too and I can’t stop reading and thinking about these beautiful books. Today I came up with something, I tried to find an article where you talked about it, but I didn’t find anything.
    I’ll talk to you about it now:
    When Jack killed Baide, he didn’t die. So now that Xaden is Venin, if Sgaeyl dies, Xaden stays alive. So it’s no longer related to Violet.
    What do you think? Thank you so much for everything you do.

    1. Hi Silvia, I can put together an article about it if you want. I think this is super important because we get clues about it when it comes to Tairn getting his teeth into Solas’s neck and threatening Varrish. I have an article about Varrish being venin and I think Tairn kinda knows? So yeah, you are right, venin can control dragons and I don’t think they die if their dragon dies…

  6. Cory, I finally had the opportunity to read this and I think you are onto something here.

    First, I think Violet can see his dreams in the same manner she can see through Tairn and Adarna’s vision and he can project his memories and thoughts (ex: Violets first signet training and the Throne). Violet in kind can do the same with Xaden due to their bond.

    I do also think she has a connection to the Venin. I keep wondering if the missive referenced beginning chapter 66 is “old” or in reference to Jack. I personally think it is in reference to and older event.

    I still think there is a significant reference in Chapter 58 when Violets states clearly “I am a person who NEEDS information to center myself”. I do like your theory about precognition. But I also believe she may also be a type of inntinnsic (possibly) that can garner information from various sources (the dead, written, geographical maps, dreams, living people, etc).

    I still struggle with the time traveling bit (Andarna was waiting 650 years vs 600). But that doesn’t have to be Violet but could be a signet we have yet to find out about.

    1. Thank you so much! I also think the same: either precognition or some type of inntinnsic as well. I cannot quite put my finger on it just yet which is so frustrating!!!

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Hello! This site is dedicated to the Empyrean Series by Rebecca Yarros. I’ve made this place to explore the rich world of Empyrean, full of characters, theories, and places. Each post is carefully researched and updated with the newest details from the series. This site is also a great spot for discussing theories about the Empyrean Series. 🐉
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