Random musing: Kingkiller Chronicles, Heat Eaters
(This is a few thoughts I had about the magic system in Patrick Rothfuss’s Kingkiller Chronicles. If you haven’t read those, this ain’t gonna make much sense. Also, if you haven’t read those, consider trying; they’re awesome.)
In The Wise Man’s Fear, Master Kilvin uses a ‘Heat Eater’ when putting out the bone-tar fire. A small device capable of safely storing tremendous amounts of heat? Sounds valuable for an arcanist. Very valuable.
Keep it half-full and you won’t have to worry about a heat source or a place to dump excess – and if it runs low or gets full, you can fill it from any classic source, or empty it, as the case may be. It essentially removes sympathy’s maim limitation.
Bonus: add a mechanism to release the heat over a half-hour or so, and it’s like a campfire – without the fire, light, or smoke. Add a heat –> light binding, and it’s a flare.
Another note on heat eaters: how might they work? I’d conjecture the following:
Though it hasn’t been explicitly stated, one-way sympathy links seem to be possible – Anker’s cold box that Kvothe repairs seems to be based on a simple heat link, but in order to cool anything to below room temperature it would need to be one-way.
Given this possibility, constructing a heat sink may be a simple matter of creating a one-way heat link from the outside of an object to the inside — escaping heat will simply be channeled back in. No link is perfectly efficient, so there will be gradual loss of the stored heat, but the rate might well be negligible, given the efficiency of a link between the in- and outside of the same object. If necessary, it could even be further augmented by mundane insulation.