The Magic of Ranger Horses

Start from the beginning

Now that's unsettling.

Even the way horses interact with each other shows language and unity in thoughts. Remember that time the Rangers were talking and their horses turned as one to stare at them? There needs to be a gif of that.

๏ ⊙ ๏

In 'The Battle of Hackham Heath', it's mentioned that Halt has met a few people while travelling who claim they can read minds or send mental messages without any explanation other than they actually can, so while Flanagan does like to have scientific reasons for most things, he is making an exception for Wargals (and Kalkara, but those aren't the focus here), and he opens the possibility that there's enough fantasy elements to allow something as unexplainable as a form of telepathy, particularly among humans.

In fact, Morgarath seems to be one of the people able to send mental messages, as Halt and Norman, the man in the mountains, can feel Morgarath's messages to the Wargals as featherlight intrusions into the consciousness, where focusing on it causes it to disappear.

I mentioned earlier that Ranger horses can access thoughts and/or memories of Rangers ('The Wolf'). Also in 'The Wolf' we learn that this phenomenon is not limited to special pairs of horses and Rangers, as the second Tug and Cormac, a retired Ranger horse Will borrows, can communicate with Will even though Cormac was either Crowley's original horse or bred specifically to replace Crowley's previous Ranger horse, and was retired as well. Interestingly, even though this proves that there isn't some weird horse soulmate frequency thing going on, not all Rangers and horses communicate, as seen in 'The Tournament at Gorlan' when only Abelard is the only one who has any level of understanding to Halt when Halt chooses from a few horses on Saddler's Farm.

If Rangers controlled the ability to communicate, then surely being able to talk with one Ranger horse would mean they can talk with all of them. Additionally, while there may be a few people who can read minds, what's the chance that all Rangers can? Plus, Rangers are only aware of what their horses are thinking when the horses speak to them. The idea that the Ranger horse chooses the Ranger (said in 'The Tournament at Gorlan') is evident in how only Abelard seems to call out to Halt, and that solidifies that Ranger horses have more control in the mental relationship.

Rangers are smart people; as Halt put it in 'The Ruins of Gorlan', it's best if the intelligence force is intelligent. However, Morgarath is intelligent himself, and gets so exhausted he's out of breath while projecting images to the Wargals in 'The Battle of Hackham Heath'. Rangers are never out of breath from it, and don't appear to practice either, so it's just something that happens to them rather than something they do to their horses. Ranger horses are specially trained and show signs of being exceptionally smart as well, and may have natural mind powers that humans in this universe don't usually have themselves. Rangers are doing very little of the communication themselves.

We all think Morgarath is an evil dude, but what if Warlock, his horse, had the same mind powers that Ranger horses have, and has been using that dominant power over Morgarath to control him, and Morgarath is just a figurehead for Warlock's evil scheme? Totally unlikely...

๏ ⊙ ๏

Magic or really weird science are as specific as I can get in how the transfer of thoughts happens between two people (or a person and a creature).

However, I wouldn't be surprised to find out that there's always a visual component to it. Within 'The Battle of Hackham Heath' Wargals were commanded by Morgarath sending images of formations for them to do; he also first reached out to them and recruited them by sending false images of Duncan harming them. When Sir Keren dominates Alyss' mind in 'The Siege of Macindaw', he uses a blue jewel to capture her focus. Ranger horses consistently appear to make human-like gestures that convey what they would be thinking if they were human, and gestures Rangers don't consciously pick up could be part of understanding what horses are thinking, along with images or vibes their horses are sending them, which Rangers (or Flanagan) turn into words for better comprehension of the message sent.

๏ ⊙ ๏

Randomly while editing I had some thoughts: can Wargals reproduce? How would they do it? How long is their lifespan? Can I ever find that out? Probably not.

That's the end of this theory, but I thought I'd share what thinking of frequencies of mental communication (or a walkie talkie, as a reader aptly put it) inspired me to imagine.

Crowley: *switches to mental channel 7* Cormac, come in Cormac.

Cormac: This is Cormac. I'm retired, what do you want? Over.

Crowley: Stop eating all the grass on my lawn, Duncan likes his parklands green. Over.

Cormac: Roger that. Eat more grass. *continues munching on The Royal Parklands below The Castle Araluen, to The King's dismay*

Collection of Ranger's Apprentice TheoriesWhere stories live. Discover now