Kahlan Amnell was the Mother Confessor of all the Midlands and, later, the wife of the Seeker of Truth and the Lord Rahl of D'Hara, Richard Rahl. After the rise of Darken Rahl, Kahlan ventured across the boundary to Westland in order to find the First Wizard, Zeddicus Zu'l Zorander, and ask him to name a new Seeker of Truth who would defeat Rahl. The First Wizard named Richard Rahl, and with Kahlan's help and guidance, he was able to kill Darken Rahl using the Boxes of Orden and the Book of Counted Shadows. Along the way, Kahlan and Richard fell in love.
After the rise of the Blood of the Fold, Kahlan and Richard led the New World against Jagang the Just and his followers in the Imperial Order War. Respected as a strong and intelligent leader and a powerful Confessor, Kahlan proved instrumental to the formation and survival of the D'Haran Empire, which she ruled alongside Richard. However, she would later become prisoner to a small group of Sisters of the Dark, who cast the rare and powerful Chainfire spell on her, effectively altering reality itself.
It was only with the efforts of Richard and the couple's various allies that Kahlan was freed, and consequently, the damage of the Chainfire spell was reversed. In the aftermath, Richard and Kahlan used the power of Orden to end the Imperial Order War and bring peace between the Old and New Worlds.
Outside of the Sword of Truth universe, Terry Goodkind reports that Kahlan was the first character he thought of, and that her iconic scene running from the D'Haran quad sparked the entire series.
Richard believed in his grandfather and his great father who creates the bond. Knowing the greater picture is has a price, one he is willing to pay with his life.
- 1 Biography
- 1.1 Early life
- 1.2 Fighting Darken Rahl
- 1.3 New Beginnings
- 1.4 Imperial Order War
- 1.4.1 Galea
- 1.4.2 Return of the Mother Confessor
- 1.4.3 Death spell
- 1.4.4 Capture
- 1.4.5 Battle of the Palace of the Prophets
- 1.4.6 Battle of Aydindril
- 1.4.7 The plague
- 1.4.8 Death of magic
- 1.4.9 Recovery
- 1.4.10 Leader of the D'Haran Empire
- 1.4.11 Reunion
- 1.4.12 Pristinely ungifted
- 1.4.13 Bandakarian Empire
- 1.5 The Chainfire Effect
- 1.6 Aftermath
- 2 Personality and traits
- 3 Powers and abilities
- 4 Relationships
- 5 Titles
- 6 Behind the scenes
- 7 Appearances
- 8 Notes and references
Kahlan's mother, the Mother Confessor at the time, chose King Wyborn Amnell of Galea as her mate, to ensure, as was the Confessors' tradition, that her daughters would have a strong father. Their first and only daughter was Kahlan. Before she gave birth to Kahlan, her mother met a powerful sorceress named Adie, who gave her a necklace to help protect Kahlan while she was in the womb. Adie was loyal to the Confessors and an ally of Kahlan throughout the Second D'Haran and Imperial Order Wars.
Kahlan grew up at the Confessors' Palace in Aydindril. Like all Confessors, Kahlan was given an exceptional education as a child. Her father, as a king and a warrior, taught Kahlan about diplomacy, war, leadership, economy, history, languages, geography, and many other matters needed to rule the Midlands. He also taught her how to fight with a sword, a bow, and a knife. Kahlan also studied with the wizards at the Wizard's Keep, in order to learn about the principles, usage, and history of magic.
Kahlan's mother taught her about her powers, and about the mission and duties of a Confessor. Kahlan was taught that the sole purpose of her existence was her duty to truth and justice and her duty to protecting the Midlands. She was told throughout her childhood that she could never have love, and that duty would take its place in her life.
Once she reached the appropriate age, Kahlan began presiding over trials and taking Confessions all over the Midlands. Most of her teenage years were spent in dungeons and jails, Confessing the accused in the name of justice.
However, when Kahlan was still reasonably young, her mother died from a terrible sickness, and her father died from grief shortly thereafter. Dennee's mother, another Confessor who was close to Kahlan's mother, "adopted" Kahlan; thus Kahlan and Dennee became something like sisters.
Dennee was frail, her powers were relatively weak, and her heart was soft; she found Confessions unbearable. Although she herself found them haunting, Kahlan often took Confessions in Dennee's place.
The Confessors' magic was exceptionally strong in Kahlan; this, along with her great strength and wisdom, resulted in Kahlan becoming the youngest Mother Confessor in history. However, shortly before and during her reign, Darken Rahl set his sights on conquering and enslaving the Midlands, and soon dissolved the boundary that separated it from his land of D'Hara. The People's Peace Army began to invade the Midlands in Rahl's name, citing motives of peace. The resulting conflict was known as the Second D'Haran War. Kahlan led her allies in a fierce fight against Rahl, but as par Wizard's First Rule, many Midlanders sided with Rahl
But Rahl truly gain the upper hand by ordering a mass genocide of the Confessors. Each Confessor was hunted down by one of Rahl's deadly quads, beaten, raped, and killed. Dennee was murdered in this manner. Only Kahlan managed to escape the purge.
With the highest source of justice in the Midlands nearly extinguished, Darken Rahl put the Boxes of Orden into play, even though the third box was not yet in his possession. Kahlan and the five remaining wizards loyal to the Midlands Alliance decided to take a final and desperate action. Kahlan fled in secret from Aydindril to cross the boundary to Westland, where it would be her mission to find First Wizard Zeddicus Zu'l Zorander and get him to name a Seeker of Truth. The wizards cast spells to cover her trail, and after doing so, killed themselves in order to make it more difficult for Rahl to follow Kahlan or find out what she was doing. Kahlan herself took a solemn oath to pledge her life to the Seeker's service, once he had been named.
Fighting Darken Rahl
Search for the First Wizard
After crossing through the boundary, Kahlan happened upon Richard Cypher, a woods guide, who had spotted four men following her not far behind. With his help, they were able to kill the four men - a quad sent by Darken Rahl, and escape.
Richard took Kahlan into Westland to his brother's house for a function. There, Michael made advances on Kahlan, which she put down, and then Richard and Kahlan went to Richard's house. After avoiding danger at Richard's house, they went to meet his friend, Zedd, as Richard was falling ill from a poisonous sting he had received from a mysterious vine. Zedd recognised Kahlan for who she was, and as he healed Richard from his sickness, they spoke a great deal about the affairs of the Midlands. Once Richard regained consciousness, through observation and questioning, Richard figured out that Zedd was the First Wizard Kahlan was looking for. Kahlan asked Zedd to name a new Seeker of Truth, to help in the fight against Darken Rahl. Zedd named Richard to be the new Seeker, and gave him the Sword of Truth.
The Seeker's Guide
Kahlan pledged her life to the new Seeker, Richard, and volunteered to act as his guide through the Midlands. Kahlan, Richard, and Zedd found an ally in Richard's old friend Chase, who, knowing the boundary better than anyone, sought to aid them in bypassing it. In the middle of their journey, they were attacked by creatures from the boundary, and Zedd and Chase were struck ill. Richard and Kahlan were forced to take them to the mysterious bone woman, Adie. Adie proved able to heal the pair, though the process took quite some time. She suggested that Richard and Kahlan leave them in her care whilst they continued their quest. Richard agreed to this, and in the short time Kahlan spent with Adie, she learnt that the old sorceress had known her mother and given her the bone necklace that she buried with Dennee. Adie also told Kahlan that she possessed the true "power of the tongue" and all should fear it (referring to the Con Dar).
Adie told them how to travel the pass across the boundary, and gave Kahlan a bone necklace to shield her from the underworld beasts. She also placed into their keeping a Night Stone, which aided the duo in their journey through a pass in the boundary. In the Midlands, Richard and Kahlan came across the Mud People; and, after they had proven their dedication and loyalty, the pair were initiated as Mud People. Kahlan acted as translator for Richard throughout his time with the Mud People, and found friendship in Weselan, wife of Savidlin. As Mud People, Richard and Kahlan called for a spirit gathering. The spirits summoned by the Mud People divulged that the witch woman Shota knew the location of the Box of Orden not possessed by Darken Rahl.
Knowing of the witch woman by reputation, Kahlan was apprehensive to meet her; Richard, however, had them set off straight to Agaden Reach. Whilst guiding Richard through Agaden Reach, Kahlan was captured by the witch woman. Fearing her Confessor's Power, Shota covered her in illusory snakes; removing them only at Richard's insistence. Through Shota, the pair learned that the lost Box of Orden was in the possession of Queen Milena of Tamarang, and the disturbing foretelling that Kahlan will use her power on Richard. Horrified, Kahlan asked Richard to kill her and became suicidal when he refused, forcing Richard to go to the extent of confiscating her knife, tying her up, and watching her constantly to prevent her from killing herself. Eventually, he convinced her to ignore the prophecy and continue to live. En route, the pair reunited with Zedd.
Venturing to Tamarang proved opportune to Kahlan and Zedd, as Milena was the same queen who Kahlan's personal wizard, and Zedd's former student, Giller, had dishonorably pledged himself to. Keen to deal with Giller, the trio arrived at Tamarang, only to find that he had been killed by Darken Rahl, who had also apparently gained the Box of Orden. However, Zedd realised that Giller had sacrificed himself to prevent Rahl from discovering the location of the Box.
After leaving Tamarang, the trio met up with Chase and the young girl, Rachel, whom Giller had entrusted with the Box of Orden. Though their mission seemed complete, they discovered that Richard had been spelled with the use of artistry and couldn't travel far. Richard went back to remove the spell and was captured by the Mord-Sith Denna. Kahlan and the others followed Richard's orders to join with his brother Michael's army, to better protect the Box.
After having met up with the army, and having no news of Richard, they decided to head back to find him. En route, Zedd was nearly trapped in the underworld whilst seeking out the nightstone in Richard's possession. By using Kahlan's power as a lifeline, he was able to escape the trap set for him by Darken Rahl. Later, whilst making their way to D'Hara, the group had what they believed to be an encounter with Darken Rahl himself, atop a dragon.
Having survived the encounter, the group continued on their way to D'Hara. They were attacked by two quads led by Demmin Nass himself. Protected by Darken Rahl's Subtractive Magic, Zedd's attempts at destroying the quad with magic proved futile and it seemed they would prove successful at their task. However, Nass's taunts that Richard was dead at the hands of the Mord-Sith forced her into an ancient state known as the Con Dar. A Confessor flew into this when a threat appeared to her true love, in Kahlan's case, Richard. Enraged, Kahlan proceeded to use her new found powers to destroy Nass and the remainder of the quad, before proceeding with Chase and Zedd to attempt to kill Rahl in revenge for the apparent death of Richard.
Darken Rahl's defeat
Once at the People's Palace in D'Hara, Zedd led the still enraged Kahlan to its centre; the Garden of Life. There Kahlan used her power to touch who she believed to be Darken Rahl; though the spell that made this so dissolved immediately, to reveal that it was in fact Richard, as it had been atop the dragon. The spell placed on Richard by Darken Rahl caused his allies to see him as their enemy, but his enemies to see him as himself.
At this, the power of the Con Dar immediately left Kahlan and she, and her allies, were quickly captured by Rahl. Touched by Kahlan's power, and not wishing her to be harmed, Richard proceeded to aid Rahl in the preparation of the spells to invoke the power of Orden, having memorized the magical instruction book the Book of Counted Shadows.
However, when Darken Rahl finally chose to open the box he believed would grant him the power of Orden, he was killed, claimed by the power instead. Richard then revealed that he had used the Wizard's First Rule; Rahl had believed that Kahlan's power had touched him, because he wanted to believe it. In actual fact, Richard had learned to love Kahlan unconditionally, and as such, her power was invalid when turned against him, and he was able to fool Darken Rahl into believing he had given the correct instructions as required by one under the power of a Confessor.
Though they were able to love freely, Kahlan's magic no longer an obstacle, the pair found their troubles to be far from over. Richard began to suffer from increasingly severe headaches, which the Mud People's healer, Nissel, believed to be caused by a sickness of Richard's spirit, rather than of his body.
However, even more troubling, a creature Kahlan recognised as a screeling appeared at the village of the Mud People, and attempted to kill Richard; Kahlan's ability to call upon the magic of the Con Dar on his behalf being the only thing to save him. Kahlan recalled learning a song, that spoke of screelings, from the wizards at the Keep as a child, which indicated that a screelings presence in the world of life meant that the Keeper of the underworld was somehow involved.
Kahlan also began to suspect that the gift was active within Richard; particularly after learning of his style of archery, which indicated that he unconsciously used his magic to thicken the air around arrows to slow them down.
Sisters of the Light
To Kahlan's horror the leader of the Mud People, the Bird Man, soon approached the pair with news that three women calling themselves Sisters of the Light had appeared searching for Richard. Kahlan had only heard the Sisters of the Light referred to once in her life; her former wizard, Giller, had once mentioned them in conversation, with a look of utter terror upon his face.
Reluctantly the pair met with the three; Sister Verna Sauventreen, Sister Grace Rendall, and Sister Elizabeth Myric. These Sisters disclosed that Richard's headaches were caused by an untrained gift/power within him. The Sisters told the pair that should Richard not train himself soon, the headaches would kill him. In order for Richard to be saved, he would need to accompany the Sisters to the Palace of the Prophets where he would be allowed three chances to accept an important offer.
Sister Grace then proceeded to offer Richard a Rada'Han, a device that served to counter the headaches and control the person collared. Richard refused the offer thus prompting Grace to kill herself. With Grace's death, her power passed onto the remaining Sisters. As part of his training, and to make sure that Richard wasn't haunted with magic related nightmares, Richard was required to bury Sister Grace alone.
Kahlan and Richard were next approached by the witch woman Shota, who informed them that she had been driven from her home by a rogue wizard accompanied by screelings. While vowing to reclaim her territory, Shota warned Richard that should he ever father a male child with Kahlan, she would kill it, to prevent the horrors that a gifted male Confessor could unleash upon the world. In addition, Shota revealed that she had learned that the veil of the underworld had been torn and that the world was in danger of being consumed by the Keeper.
Soon Sisters Verna and Elizabeth returned, and when Richard refused the second offer of the Rada'Han, it resulted in the death of Elizabeth. Following this, Richard and Kahlan called a gathering of the ancestors' spirits. Richard learned the disturbing truth. Darken Rahl was Richard's true father. Upon being summoned to this gathering, Darken Rahl's evil spirit escaped through a tear in the veil that the power of Orden had created. It was only through the intervention of the spirit of the Mord-Sith, Denna, that Richard survived his father's touch.
Later, Sister Verna reappeared at the village. Kahlan, fearing that Richard's gift would soon kill him, commanded him to accept the offer of the Rada'Han and reluctantly he complied; though feeling that Kahlan had forsaken him.
Imperial Order War
Following this, Kahlan set off with three Mud People guards, Chandalen, Tossidin and Prindin, in an attempt to reach Zedd in Aydindril and inform him of what had transpired. En route she taught the three Mud People the basics of speaking the common tongue.
On their way, the three came near to the Galean Crown city of Ebinissia, which they found to be deserted; the people had been butchered, raped and murdered by an immense army. Worse, Kahlan found evidence that suggested a small Galean force that had happened upon their ravaged Crown city had set off to confront the much larger offending army.
- “For Ebinissia! For her dead! For her spirit!”
- ―Kahlan during the battle of Galea[src]
After walking unhindered into the Galean camp, Kahlan became horrified as to what she found; an army of five thousand, barely into adulthood, who hoped to defeat the fifty thousand strong army that had destroyed Ebinissia. Furthermore, the force refused to obey her orders to return to Ebinissia, and as such, Kahlan felt obligated as the Mother Confessor to aid them. Indeed, she had discovered that the enemy army had with them a wizard, something the Galean's had failed to realize.
Having taken command of the severely outmatched force, Kahlan travelled, alone, to the camp of the enemy. There she discovered that the army was made up of soldiers from many lands and had formed together under the banner of the Imperial Order. After causing chaos within the enemy camp, Kahlan was successful in killing the armies wizard, Slagle, ensuring that the Order was not aware of the approaching Galean force.
Later, Kahlan led her men in a surprise raid on the Order camp, capturing the command tents and killing many enemy soldiers. Later, Kahlan would find herself at the mercy of one of her guards, Prindin, who revealed himself as a baneling, however, Chandalen proved able to save her. Shortly after this, Kahlan decided that the Galeans, under the command of Captain Bradley Ryan, to whom she entrusted the sword of her father the former king of Galea, were ready to continue fighting the Order without her. As such, she and Chandalen left for Aydindril.
Return of the Mother Confessor
Upon returning to Aydindril, Kahlan made her way to her ancestral home; the Confessors' Palace, from which the Confessors had ruled the Midlands for thousands of years. There she found High Prince Fyren sitting in the First Chair of the Central Council of the Midlands; a seat reserved for the Mother Confessor. After rebuking the High Prince, Kahlan ordered the entire Council to meet the following morning.
That night Kahlan found herself forced to participate in a grand celebration in honour of her safe return. At the conclusion of this she found Fyren urinating in her bed; she had the Kelton thrown from the palace and her bed burnt. The next morning when she arrived in the council chamber, it was revealed to her that Fyren had been killed and that she was being charged her with his murder. The wizard, Neville Ranson, created various charges against the Mother Confessor and had her tried before the council; indeed, Kahlan encouraged Mistress Sanderholt to go along with the accusations Ranson, and the Imperial Order who he was allied with, tortured her into lodging.
Having been found guilty, Kahlan was thrown into a pit with murderers and rapists, to await execution. Using her power on one of these men, she charged him with her protection, until Chandalen rescued her, having been told of her troubles by Jebra Bevinvier and in her escape, she killed Neville Ranson. A short time later she was reunited with Zedd and Adie, each of whom had lost their memories after having been healed to rid themselves of a terrible underworld sickness; however, Kahlan's news that Richard had been taken by the Sisters of the Light successfully returned Zedd's memories to him.
In his anger, Zedd made Kahlan believe he intended to have her executed; however, this was revealed as a ploy on his part, so that he could cast a death spell over her. Death spells required the subject to truly believe they were going to die, and as such, Zedd needed Kahlan to think he intended to execute her. The death spell Zedd created made people think that she had been successfully executed following her trial, and as such, she was no longer hunted.
Her half-sister, Cyrilla Amnell, having been rendered temporarily delirious due to her own ordeals in Aydindril, Kahlan took her place as the Queen of Galea. Due to the death spell around her, people believed she had always held this position rather than that of Mother Confessor.
In addition, Kahlan and Richard were reunited in a parallel realm for a brief time, by the spirit of Denna, where they consummated their love. Whilst there she was given a message by a spirit named Pell for Adie, telling her that he knew she had never betrayed him. This message was so emotionally powerful for Adie, that it jolted her memories back to her. Kahlan also learnt that Richard had successfully banished the spirit of Darken Rahl back to the underworld, and closed the tear in the veil his opening of the Boxes of Orden had caused.
En route to Ebinissia, a gar named Gratch appeared with a message from Richard that indicated he planned to dissolve the alliance of the Midlands. Horrified, Kahlan sent Zedd, atop Gratch, to counsel Richard, whilst Adie stayed with her to act as her protection.
Whilst continuing on their way to Ebinissia, Kahlan and Adie decided to break away from their Galean contingent and travel alone in the carriage driven by Ahern. However, they were soon intercepted by an army of the Blood of the Fold, and the pair attempted to escape; alone, Adie used her gift to destroy well over a hundred of their enemies, though this drained her and she was unable to fight the two lesser sorceresses used by the Fold, which caused them to be captured.
In addition, the leader of the Fold, Tobias Brogan, named Kahlan as the Mother Confessor, rather than the Queen of Galea, indicating that the death spell around her had been broken; something that could only occur should something happen to the wizard who cast it, Zedd, or if someone who was gifted deduced that her death had been feigned by such a spell.
Due to the Fold having placed Rada'Han's on their necks, Kahlan and Adie proved helpless and were promptly taken to the city of Tanimura in the Old World. There the pair were held at the Palace of the Prophets; the ancestral home of the Sisters of the Light.
Whilst kept prisoner at the Palace, the pair were briefly confronted by the Sister of the Dark, Sister Merissa, who claimed that Richard had cheated on Kahlan during his time at the Palace; with Merissa herself. However, Adie promptly dismissed Kahlan's fears, reminding her that Merissa was a woman who hoped only to cause Richard pain; by turning Kahlan against him.
The pairs imprisonment ended however, after Lunetta Brogan, revealed to her brother, Tobias, that he had been born with the gift; something he had always condemned as the taint of the Keeper. Tobias promptly withdrew his life time beliefs and declared that rather than the gifted being banelings, it was the Creator himself who was evil. Lunetta proceeded to kill her quickly maddening brother, and was herself killed by his right hand man, Galtero. After Kahlan dealt with Galtero, she and Adie escaped their confinement only to find themselves in the midst of a violent battle.
Battle of the Palace of the Prophets
The Palace of the Prophets had come under the control of the evil Sisters of the Dark; women committed to serving the Keeper. In addition, the leader of the Imperial Order, Emperor Jagang, had used his abilities as a dream walker to capture the minds of the fallen Sisters, forcing them to do his bidding. However, those loyal to Richard were protected from Jagang's powers by the ancient bond passed down through the line of the House of Rahl. Among these people were the Sisters still loyal to the Light, led by the now Prelate Verna Sauventreen.
Kahlan and Adie found Verna, who informed the pair of what had transpired. In addition, the soldiers of the Blood of the Fold had taken to killing anything in their sight, whether Sister or Imperial Order soldier. Kahlan quickly left Adie with Verna to have the Sisters take the Rada'Han from her neck but in her haste to rescue Ahern, who remained captured, failed to have her own collar removed. Kahlan freed Ahern and had him head north with Adie, Verna and the loyal Sisters. Shortly afterwards, Kahlan was found by Richard who had travelled through the sliph from Aydindril in a matter of hours. Richard removed the Rada'Han from Kahlan's neck and then planned with her and Verna how to prevent Jagang from gaining the Palace, the prophecies it contained and the benefits of the bifurcated web cast over it. In addition, the Sisters pledged themselves to Richard and to protecting the D'Haran Army from Jagang's gifted. Kahlan also learnt that Zedd had never arrived to help Richard; indicating that he and Gratch had been killed.
Richard and Kahlan entered the vaults of the Palace, hoping to find a way to use the Subtractive side of her magic to destroy the entire Palace, so as to thwart Jagang. The pair found themselves met with many obstacles; and indeed, it proved not to be Kahlan's magic that ignited a light web that was inexplicably lit with in the vaults, but Richard's fledging gift, which was activated by his need. The pair escaped the Palace moments before it was annihilated by the spell Richard had ignited.
After travelling through the sliph to the Wizard's Keep in Aydindril, Richard was confronted by Sister Merissa, who had followed them, while Kahlan was unable to breathe due to the rapture the sliph caused. Richard proved able to kill Merissa by forcing the Sword of Truth within the sliph whilst she was still connected to it, as its magic was incompatabile with that of the sliph, and then helped Kahlan to breathe.
Battle of Aydindril
The pair were then forced to destroy the eggs of the mriswith queen, before destroying the queen herself. However, after believing they had finally reached safety, Richard and Kahlan discovered that Aydindril itself had become embroiled in battle. It soon became clear that soldiers of the Blood of the Fold were forcing themselves into the city; with the aid of mriswith. After the revelation that mriswith were making their way into the capital, Richard had Kahlan taken to the Confessor's Palace for protection, whilst he led the defence of the city.
However, Kahlan defied his orders, leading D'Haran's and members of the palace staff into battle. While Kahlan's tactics proved more than sound, the presence of mriswith blunted them considerably. Richard resigned himself to die by her side, when, spots within the sky appeared. These spots proved to be gars, led by Gratch, who had survived his earlier troubles. In addition, an army of Keltans appeared with the intention of protecting Kahlan, who Richard had named as the new Queen of Kelton after the death of the last of the royal family and having dissolved the Midlands into the D'Haran Empire. These additions to the D'Haran army proved invaluable; the battle for Aydindril was won.
Through Gratch, Richard learnt that the gar also believed Zedd dead, but had not actually seen him killed. Richard also had Gratch ensure that the gar nation would no longer hunt humans, so long as humans would allow gars to live in peace. Shortly after the battle, Kahlan added her authority to Richard's in his demands that the nations of the Midlands join with the new D'Haran Empire in opposition to the Imperial Order.
With Richard having dissolved the alliance between the lands of the Midlands, matters of protocol had fallen into disarray, and untrained D'Haran officers had taken to handling such matters. During this disarray a young man named Marlin Pickard approached some officers asking where he may find Richard Rahl, Lord Rahl of D'Hara, so that he could assassinate him. The D'Harans acted quickly, apprehending the man before alerting Kahlan to the danger. Kahlan proceeded to interrogate the man along with the Mord-Sith Cara, who had pledged herself to protecting the Lord Rahl and Mother Confessor. Cara noted that Kahlan had fought mercilessly in the battle of Aydindril and deemed her worthy of Richard; indeed, she even proclaimed her a sister of the Agiel.
Cara was keen to kill the threat to her charge, however, Kahlan ordered that they assess the threat Marlin posed first. It soon became clear that the assassin was in fact a wizard, though Cara was able to capture his magic through her talents as a Mord-Sith and direct it back at him. Marlin revealed that he was a wizard under the power of the dream walker Emperor Jagang and had been ordered to announce himself and his intentions upon gaining entry to the Confessor's Palace. Knowing that the emperor must have known that Marlin would be captured after announcing himself and unable to identify what Jagang's true motives were, Kahlan had the wizard placed in the pit outside the palace, which had once housed the murderers and rapists that had attempted to defile her and had caused her half-sister Cyrilla to become deranged.
In the pit, Marlin revealed that he had travelled to Aydindril with another person sent by Jagang; a Sister of the Dark, though he did not know her name. However, his description of the woman seemed to match with that of a woman, by the name of Nadine, who Kahlan and Cara had observed with suspicion whilst making their way to interrogate Marlin.
Nadine appeared to be nothing more than she seemed; however, she revealed that a woman named Shota had come to her and told her that her destiny was to marry her old friend Richard Cypher, and that Richard Rahl would be able to help her find him. Knowing full well that Richard had once gone by the name of Cypher, Kahlan became furious at Shota's inexplicable meddling, as she had tried to prevent Kahlan and Richard's union since they first encountered her.
Richard assured Nadine that he had no intention of marrying anyone but Kahlan, though it was clear to all that Nadine was far from causing trouble. Kahlan reluctantly informed Richard of the appearance of Marlin and he hoped to dissuade her and Cara from continuing their interrogation. Equally as reluctantly, Kahlan allowed Nadine to stay at the palace after learning that Shota had asked her to warn Richard that "the winds were hunting him".
Nadine followed Kahlan and Cara to their interrogation of Marlin and proved a burden. Emperor Jagang, through his control over Marlin had been able to capture Cara's link to the wizard, causing it to become useless. Using Marlin, Jagang imprinted on the walls of the pit the words of a prophecy, in High D'Haran, which he claimed to have invoked through Marlin and the Sister of the Dark, Sister Amelia, and would ensure the death of Richard.
In Marlin's escape, Jagang manipulated the link between himself and Cara to strike the Mord-Sith down causing her to feel extraordinary amounts of pain. Nadine and Kahlan pursued Marlin, and when Kahlan attempted to use her power on him, in the hopes of also destroying Jagang's mind, Marlin died as Jagang burnt the bridges of his mind whilst he removed his control over the wizard.
- “On the red moon will come the firestorm. The one bonded to the blade will watch as his people die. If he does nothing, then he, and all those he loves, will die in its heat, for no blade forged of steel or conjured of sorcery, can touch this foe. To quench the inferno, he must seek the remedy in the winds. Lightning will find him on that path, for the one in white, his true beloved, will betray him in her blood.”
- ―An ancient prophecy about Kahlan and Richard[src]
The prophecy proved extremely disturbing for Kahlan, as it indicated that she would betray Richard. In addition, it mentioned the mysterious winds that Shota had warned were hunting him. Richard helped to dissuade Kahlan's fears that she could possibly betray him by reminding her that prophecy was not meant to be read by the words alone, and by talking of their approaching wedding. Richard also found it disturbing that the healing order his brother Drefan claimed to be part of was named the Raug'Moss, a term that meant Divine Wind in High D'Haran.
Later, as Jagang had told Kahlan it would, the moon rose red for several days. Following a train of thought based on his repeated encounters with "the winds", Richard researched ancient texts written by Koloblicin and eventually found an interesting passage mentioning the Temple of the Winds. It was also learnt that the Temple was often referred to as simply the winds and that the rising of the red moons was a warning sent by the Temple that indicated that it had been violated.
Kahlan was also involved in accepting the surrender several nations of the Midlands and in condemning those who chose neutrality in the war against the Order. In addition, she became disturbed at the outbreak of murders within Aydindril. However, she became horrified further when it became clear that a deadly plague had begun to take the lives of her people. It soon became clear that the plague was what had been referred to in the ancient prophecy Jagang had revealed to her.
Death of magic
To end the plague, Richard Rahl traveled to the Temple of the Winds, though the price for doing so was that he marry Nadine and Kahlan marry Drefan, where he learned how to take the plague from the world and trap it within his own body. Upon returning, he did so, but was then committed to dying. Kahlan traveled through the sliph to find Nathan Rahl, who told her to recite the names of the three chimes. Kahlan returned to Richard and did so, which in turn released the chimes into the world. Later, Nadine having been murdered by Drefan, who in turn had been killed, Kahlan and Richard married at the village of the Mud People.
The function of the chimes was to drain the world of magic, which would leave everyone helpless. Zedd and Ann tried to trick Richard and Kahlan into believing the chimes were not the cause of the magic's failing, but as the Seeker of Truth, Richard learned otherwise. Though Additive magic failed, Subtractive did not, allowing the Sisters of the Dark to still use some of their magic. Jagang was unable to use his powers as dream walker. Cara found it troublesome that she could not feel the bond with Richard, and her Agiel did not work.
Richard learned that the chimes were defeated by Joseph Ander, nicknamed "The Mountain," and discovered that Joseph used the chimes to power the Dominie Dirtch, a bell-shaped defense system that formed a perimeter around Anderith. Richard turned the chimes against Joseph, destroying the Dominie Dirtch and sending the chimes back to the underworld; returning magic to the world.
However, beforehand Kahlan had been dreadfully beaten and had had a spell of Subtractive nature cast over her that ensured magic could not be used to heal her. Having lost faith because of the people of Anderith, Richard renounced his claim to rule the D'Haran Empire and went to the woods of Westland with Cara and Kahlan, so that the later could heal in peace. In addition, the beating caused Kahlan to miscarry Richard's child.
Richard was devastated by the fall of Ander, but most of all by Kahlan's abuse. He lost faith in the cause of the D'Haran Empire, believing that the people did not deserve freedom if they would not fight for it, and abandoned his army. He took Kahlan and Cara back across the boundary to Westland and built them a small cabin in the mountains to hide. They lived here for many months, and Richard and Cara managed to nurse Kahlan back to health. Once she was recovered, Kahlan became determined to return to the Midlands and continue to lead the Empire. She, unlike Richard, believed that although the people do not always stand up for themselves, it is their leader's duty to patiently teach them, and to not give up on them.
But before Kahlan could leave or convince Richard to leave, she was attacked by the sorceress Nicci, who proceeded to cast a maternity spell on her, linking the lives of the two women. Nicci demanded that Richard abandon all of his obligations and identities and come with her as her husband to the Old World, lest she kill Kahlan. Kahlan, horrified at the thought of Richard being thus enslaved to Nicci, ordered him to kill them both. However, Richard valued Kahlan's life more than his own freedom, and went with Nicci anyway. Before he left, Kahlan convinced him to take Shota's magical necklace, so that Richard could render Nicci infertile in the eventuality that she would force him to sleep with her.
Enraged by this turn of events, Kahlan vows to lead the Empire into battle until every man, woman and child of the Imperial Order are dead, including Nicci, freeing Richard and the New World. On their way out of Westland, Cara and Kahlan were found by Annalina Aldurren. Kahlan blamed Ann for all that had transpired and threw her journey book in the campfire before leaving for Galea. There, Kahlan had her half-brother Harold Amnell ready the Galean army, and left with an advance guard of one thousand men to aid the D'Haran Army in its battle with the Imperial Order.
Leader of the D'Haran Empire
- “Kahlan, do you have any idea how we can get Richard back?"
"Yes. I have a plan."
"Would you mind sharing it with me?"
"It's simple. I plan on killing every Imperial Order man, woman, and child until I get to the very last one left alive, and then if she doesn't give him back, I'm going to kill her, too.”
- ―Kahlan, in control of the New World[src]
Kahlan and her small force arrived at the D'Haran camp in the aftermath of a major battle with the Order. Unfortunately the commanding general of the army, Reibisch, had been killed along with most of the senior officers; as such, Kahlan instated Benjamin Meiffert as commanding general. She withdrew into herself as she informed Zedd, Verna, Adie and other important people within the army that Richard had been taken by Nicci, and then organised a very successful raid on the Order's camp, in which not a single D'Haran was killed.
Later, the Order would attempt a similar attack upon the D'Haran army, and though they were partially successful, Kahlan and the army ensured that the Order lost many men during the skirmish. However, the attack forshadowed the full force of the coming Imperial Order army which Jagang had decided to throw against Kahlan in the hopes of annihilating her, whom he had come to despise more than even Richard, and the entire D'Haran army itself. Fortunately, a weapon designed by Verna, and used by her, Kahlan, Philippa and Cara, that blinded and injured thousands of the enemy, stalled Jagang's horde long enough for the army to retreat behind the passes to D'Hara which were easily defended, as it was an arduous journey to outflank any army protected by them.
Whilst commanding the army from behind the passes, Kahlan also participated in diplomacy with representatives and ambassadors of Midlands nations. In one such meeting with Representative Theriault of Herjborgue, Kahlan was able to ensure the army acquired warm woolen uniforms, for the terrible winter ahead, that also served as camouflage. Later, when her half-brother Prince Harold of Galea finally arrived, overdue, instead of the one hundred thousand men she had been expecting, he brought but a thousand; his sister, Queen Cyrilla, had regained her mind and the throne, before calling all Galeans back to the homeland for protection. The one thousand men were members of the force she had lead in defence of Galea at the beginning of the war, who had renounced Galea in favour of Kahlan's leadership.
Kahlan ordered that Cyrilla be removed from power and that Harold bring the army he had promised; however he refused, and one of the gifted with her, Zedd, Adie, Verna and Warren, killed him (Kahlan stated she never wanted to know which one) (Most likely Zedd or Adie having grown up under the rule of the Mother Confessor would not talerate the way she was treated.). By the next morning, half the Galean contingent of the army had left as ordered by Prince Harold before his death and were soon followed by Lieutenant Leiden and his Keltish forces. However, shortly afterwards, during the wedding of Verna and Warren, which Kahlan helped organise for her dear friends in the hopes of raising morale, General Baldwin of Kelton arrived with the entire Keltish army, having demoted Leiden. In addition, a force of additional Mord-Sith arrived to aid the army.
Soon afterward, Kahlan ordered her home city, and the capital of Midlands, Aydindril evacuated so as to deny Jagang the satisfaction of capturing it. Unfortunately, Warren was killed when several Imperial Order assassins entered the camp, though before dying he warned Kahlan that Richard had been right in avoiding to fight the Order head on.
When the pair arrived at Altur'Rang, they found that it was in revolt against the control of the Order. Kahlan searched desperately for Richard, running him through with his own sword when she began to duel him not realizing who he was; however, Richard had allowed Kahlan to stab him so that Nicci would feel compelled to sever the link between them so as to use her magic to heal Richard.
Kahlan was wary of Nicci, though she ultimately allowed the sorceress close enough to remove the link between them and heal Richard. Unfortunately for Richard, Nicci had made the choice to free Kahlan from her magic and release Richard the moment she saw the statue carved by him that caused the people of Altur'Rang to revolt, and had not needed to allow himself to be injured. Nicci apologized to the pair and swore herself to their cause.
After leaving Altur'Rang in Nicci's care, Kahlan, Richard and Cara discovered a statue that had been carved in Kahlan's image. Once activated, sand began to fall from within the small statue, indicating that Kahlan's life was in danger. Horrified by this implication, the trio began to return to Altur'Rang to seek Nicci's advice, however, were tracked by hearthounds; creatures of the underworld.
In addition, Richard saved a man named Friedrich Gilder from the hounds. Friedrich had been sent by Nathan Rahl to deliver a book entitled Pillars of Creation to Richard, as prophecy warned that the book would prove instrumental to him. However, whilest they pondered this, they were beset upon by Oba Rahl, who with the Keepers aid managed to temporarily paralyze them and kidnap Kahlan.
Oba proved to be pristinely ungifted; that is, immune to magic. Richard followed his mad half-brother to a place known as the Pillars of Creation and there was followed by his half-sister, Jennsen Rahl, who also proved to be pristinely ungifted. Richard managed to prove to Jennsen that he was different to other members of the House of Rahl and held no wish to kill her; as such, she joined with him and aided in rescuing Kahlan.
Shortly after meeting Jennsen, the small group came across a man named Owen; who after taking advantage of their kindness, poisoned Richard as a means of forcing him to aid his people. Richard, who was also suffering from a terrible illness caused by his gift, soon discovered that Owen and his people in the land of Bandakar were pristinely ungifted just as Jennsen was. In addition, the entire populace of Bandakar had been taught to abhor violence and refused to take up arms against the Imperial Order force that had taken control of their land.
When Kahlan attempted to take the leader of this force, Nicholas the Slide, with her power, Nicholas used his own ability to capture her soul before she could unleash her magic. However, Richard ultimately proved able to kill the Slide and free Kahlan. In addition, he was able to remedy the problem with his gift, which allowed him to instinctively create the antidote to the poison Owen had trapped him with.
The Chainfire Effect
A Rada'Han was then placed around the Mother Confessor's neck before the four sister's proceeded to cast the Chainfire over her. An untested spell that wiped Kahlan Amnell - Mother Confessor of the Midlands, wife to the Seeker, and Lord Richard Rahl, and Queen of Kelton - from existence.
Kahlan's entire life was taken from her in an instant. All memories of Richard, her friends and sister confessors, even her own power and position as Mother Confessor, was lost. In addition, every single prophecy, and record of Kahlan Amnell was wiped out as well. This left her invisible to all because they couldn't remember what they saw long enough to realize who and what she was. The only people in the world who could see her were the Sisters because they had cast the spell.
Though the Sisters referred to her as Kahlan, they never spoke her last name or her title in the mother confessors presence. As a result Kahlan came to view herself as a nobody with no past or hope for the future. Following her capture the four Sisters and their captive then set off for the People's Palace in D'Hara. However, along the way they stopped in the city of Aydindril and planted a corpse in a grave marked "Kahlan".
Stealing the Boxes
Once at the People's Palace, the Sisters pretended to be kindly tourists who were eager to see the sights of the famous Palace. However, this was merely an act designed to allow them the best chance to scope out the direction of the Garden of Life.
Armina was the Sister who discovered which hallway led to the Garden. Ulicia then ordered her to keep a look out at one end of the hallway and Cecilia the other. This just left her, Sister Tovi, and Kahlan to approach the heavenly guarded door. As they approached, Ulicia directed Kahlan to walk past the guards and into the Garden. For a moment the guards noticed that she was unauthorized to be in this area, but a mere second after noticing her, she was wiped from their memory due to the Chainfire spell that surrounded her.
Ulicia and Tovi played at admiring artwork near the entry to the Garden while waiting for Kahlan to return. When she did, they were ecstatic; she had brought them the one counter to the Chainfire Event: the Boxes of Orden.
However, Kahlan did not had enough room in her pack for all three of the Boxes. Ulicia reacted violently to this and savagely beat Kahlan with her ever present stout oak rod. She then used her gift to pin Kahlan against a wall and instructed her to return to the Garden, remove whatever she had in her pack and bring her the other two Boxes.
After this, Ulicia ordered Tovi to leave the Palace with the first box, as it was too dangerous to stand idly by with something so important to their plan and so jealously guarded by the D'Haran troops. They would rendezvous later. When Kahlan returned, Ulicia placed the Boxes of Orden into play before she, Sisters Armina and Cecilia and the captive Kahlan left the People's Palace behind.
Ulicia, Armina, Cecilia and the captive Kahlan, finally made it to The White Horse Inn. It was here that they were to meet up with Sister Tovi and finally have all three Boxes of Orden in their possession. The inn keeper and his wife, Orlan and Emmy, let the women in out of the rain. At first the Sisters did not realize that the inn keeper and his wife were fighting over the number of women present. Emmy believed there to be only three, while Orlan believed there to be four. However, the importance of the conversation didn't escape them for long.
The Sisters quickly forced Orlan to describe the extra woman that he saw. It soon becomes obvious that he was able to see Kahlan. Armina could not believe that Orlan was able to see Kahlan, as they had done the verification webs to ensure everything had gone to plan. Cecilia then argued that they did not do the interior webs, only the exterior. However, this practice had not been done since the Great War.
Orlan became angered at the gruff way he was being treated by the Sisters, but was quickly knocked down by Sister Ulicia, with her oak rod. When he got back to his feet and almost used Kahlan's title, Mother Confessor, Ulicia used her gift to unleash a powerful bolt of lightning that blasted the man in two. She later used her dacra to kill the man's wife and daughter, but only after discovering that Tovi was no longer at the inn and had stated she was on her way to Caska.
On the way to Caska, the Sisters and Kahlan were forced to avoid Imperial Order troops, however, they could not avoid the carnage left in their wake. The Sister's dreamt of the power they would be able to unleash upon Jagang, once they had opened a Box of Orden. Eventually making it to the Deep Nothing, the land in which Caska was situated, the Sisters began to sense someone was following them. They later captured the person; a young girl named Jillian.
Jillian said that Tovi had her grandfather captured and that she had sent her to guide her Sisters to her. They also discovered that Jillian was also able to see Kahlan. Jillian guided the Sisters through a labyrinth and when they came to a door, using their gifts, the Sisters could sense Tovi beyond it.
However, when they entered the room, it was not Tovi who waited for them, but Emperor Jagang. Jagang informed them that Tovi had been dead for some time now and that their supposed bond to Richard Rahl had never been anything more than a fantasy, he had been using them all along, because he liked the idea of having Sisters of the Dark out in the world, who were up to things he could use to his advantage. He also realized that their plans would help him further sabotage Richard Rahl's cause and net him the prize of prizes; Kahlan Amnell. What Jillian had said about her grandfather earlier, had been true, except that it was Jagang, not Tovi, who held him captive.
The Sisters were forced to help Jagang with his preparations with the Book of Counted Shadows. As the book insisted that a Confessor was the only way to verify the truth of the book, Jagang and the Sisters had Kahlan study the book to see if she can find a way to do so. She pointed out that the book says Shadow, not Shadows. The Sisters argue the relevance of this, Ulicia insisting that Kahlan had verified the falseity of the book, as it said she would.
While Jagang listened to the Sister's argue, Kahlan helped Jillian to escape. She killed two guards, took a knife and then ran with Jillian, knowing she would be apprehended due to the Rada'Han on her neck. As Kahlan turned back, she threw the knife as hard as she could at the open doorway, before anyone had even come through. As the knife reached the doorway, Cecilia walked through it and was stabbed directly through the heart, dying instantly.
Kahlan was apprehended via the Rada'Han and made unconscious, while Jillian was able to escape. Ulicia and Armina continued to argue over whether Kahlan's verification was relevant or not. Later, Jagang had Kahlan walk naked through his camp, to draw out anomalies among his men who were able to see her despite the Chainfire spell. Ulicia and Armina were made to follow her from a distance, so as to make sure she was unharmed by the soldiers. These soldiers were made Kahlan's guards.
After long discussions with Jagang about matters to do with the Book of Counted Shadows and the Boxes of Orden, Ulicia and Armina were sent to the tents, as they were so long ago, to be used and abused by Jagang's men, in any way they saw fit, so long as their wounds weren't fatal. Both women continued to accompany Jagang during the day, however, their attractive appearances had eroded, due to their treatment.
Shortly after, Jagang began excavating under the Azrith Plains so that his forces could secretly enter the People's Palace and wipe out the D'Haran army and all those inside. Armina and two other Sister of the Dark then entered the palace and managed to capture Nicci. Nicci was then brought to Jagang where she met Kahlan; realising instantly who she was.
Meanwhile, Jagang's forces were competing in a Ja'La tournament. During the ultimate match between Jagang's prized team and a rival squad led by a man whom Kahlan was instantly drawn to, riots broke out due to Jagang's unfair decision about the outcome. In the process, the man, really Richard, was able to rescue Nicci, whilst Kahlan was taken by Samuel.
End of the War
After several days of journeying, Samuel attempted to rape Kahlan. During the struggle, she touched the Sword of Truth, which caused the affects of Chainfire to be countered. She recalled that she was a Confessor, and released her power into him so as to save her life. Even though she remembered that she was a Confessor; she did not recall anything of her past. Samuel revealed that he was an agent of the witch woman Six of Tamarang, and that Richard Rahl and Kahlan were once married. Samuel died when he realized that he was going to rape Kahlan, his mistress, and she could not forgive him.
En route to Tamarang, Richard met up with Kahlan. He wouldn't answer her questions about the circumstances of their marriage, for fear of contaminating what was known as the sterile field, the consequences of which would ensure she could never regain her memories. To make amends for his lack of forthrightness and to show he did care for her, he carved for her a smaller model of Spirit.
When at Tamarang, Richard and Kahlan attempted to rescue Zedd, Rikka and Tom, however, they were interrupted by Six herself. However, the timely arrival of Shota resulted in Six's death, whilst Kahlan, Richard and Zedd were able to escape to the People's Palace atop the red dragon Gregory.
At the Palace, Richard surrendered to Jagang's terms, allowing him and his Sisters of the Dark into the palace so they could use the Garden of Life to open the boxes of Orden. During the ritual, Jagang goes, unguarded, to a cell where Nicci was held. She promptly locked a Rada'Han around his neck, rendering him powerless, and eventually killed him unceremoniously, insisting that he would not become a martyr or have a drawn-out, climactic death. Her imprisonment had simply been a ruse to lure Jagang unguarded, so that she could eliminate him once and for all.
In the Garden of Life, the Sisters of the Dark completed the ritual to find out which Box was correct and subsequently opened it. At first, it seemed they were successful. However, it became increasingly clear that something was wrong. Richard explained to the furious Sisters that all of the Books of Counted Shadows were fake keys - they mentioned Confessors, which were created after the boxes were. He also told them that even if they did have the true key, they would still fail because of their intent. The Book of Life warned against hatred and malicious intent in the very beginning, and since they were using the power for evil, no matter which box they opened they would forfeit their lives. This was proven correct when the Sisters were sucked into the underworld.
Richard explained to everyone that the real key to the magic of Orden was the Sword of Truth. Much to Richard's dismay, Kahlan told Richard she loved him, proving that she was no longer a sterile field and that emotions had contaminated her chances of regaining her memory. Richard then put the Sword over each box in turn. Each box on the side turned the sword black; the one in the middle turned it a brilliant white. Richard stabbed the box, capturing the magic of Orden. Now in command of life and death, he used the magic to send the followers of the Order to a new world, devoid of all magic, as they wished. Richard's half sister Jennsen and the rest of the Pillars of Creation decided that they also wished to go to this new world too. They felt that because they had no magic, a world without magic was a better place for them, because in this new world magic will be bred out because of their presence. Tom, the man that loved Jennsen, also went to this world so that he could be with her.
Richard also used Orden to repair the damage caused by the chimes, and to remove Chainfire and send it off to the new world he had created, where instead of causing harm it could serve a useful purpose - ensuring the complete removal of magic from that world, and removing all its inhabitants' memories of their previous world. As Richard went to close the doorway, he feared Kahlan was lost because the sterile field required for Orden was tainted. She then told him that she was protected because she realized she had fallen in love with him on her own, and for the same reasons that she had fallen in love with him at first, similar to his realization of his love for her when they had first met.
As such, Kahlan Amnell, Mother Confessor of the Midlands, remained a sterile field and regained all of her memories of her previous life.
Following the wars end, Richard and Kahlan presided over the reconstruction of the New World. Together, they attended the wedding of Cara and Benjamin Meiffert and appeared to retain close ties with all the allies they gathered around themselves throughout the war.
Personality and traits
- “I hope that someday I'm half as wise as you, and have the guts you do, to use that wisdom.”
- ―Captain Ryan[src]
Kahlan was a very beautiful, tall woman with intelligent green eyes. She wore her dark brown hair longer than any other woman in the Midlands, as she held the highest rank of all. Being the Mother Confessor, she was usually dressed in her white Mother Confessor's dress, though she was not adverse to wearing traveling clothes. In the books she wears pants and a tunic when traveling, while in the television series she wears a green, black, or purple dress.
Kahlan carries a knife given to her by Chase (two daggers from Aydindril in the television series). She wears a necklace with a pendant of black stone given to her by Shota that makes it impossible for her to have children. She also wears the Agiel of Denna around her neck, a sign of her simultaneous respect and hatred for the Mord-Sith who guides her husband in the spirit world and yet tortured him and took him as a mate in life.
Despite having grown up in the beautiful Confessors' Palace, Kahlan was far from arrogant. She longed for peace across the Old and New Worlds and for the freedom and prosperity of all her people. Kahlan was capable of being ruthless to those who committed treason or who were allied with the Imperial Order, and was ruled by cold, unrelenting justice and duty. Kahlan was adept at hiding her emotions behind the face of a Confessor. As a Confessor, Kahlan valued and respected truth immensely; as Zedd once said, "you know, dear one, you might make a good Seeker yourself."
Confessors have no friends, bar other Confessors, and all her life Kahlan longed to have a friend who loved her for herself, and also for the possibility of being a woman and living the life of family and children. Kahlan's lifetime wish became a reality when she met her future husband, Richard Rahl. Soon after, Kahlan made many friends with Richard's allies and no longer felt the loneliness of being born a Confessor.
Powers and abilities
- “I'm of Confessor blood, first and last. I am the Mother Confessor, and as such, if I say you're to march into a lake, then it's your duty to march until you're breathing water and seeing fishes. Does that make it clear enough for you, soldier?”
"I'm the bringer of death."
"So you are.”
- As with all Confessors, Kahlan possessed the magic of love. With but a touch, Kahlan could cause a person to become fanatically loyal to her, to the point that he or she no longer possessed a sense of self. However, whereas a typical Confessor would be incapacitated for up to a day after having used her power, Kahlan required only hours to recover. This in particular highlighted her as an unusually powerful Confessor.
- Kahlan's power over those touched by her magic was seemingly limitless. Indeed, she even possessed the ability to cause a subject touched by her power to die at her command. At one point she is even able to cause a man to die simply by making him see the full injustice of his actions.
- Kahlan also had the ability to invoke the Subtractive side of her magic, the Con Dar or the Confessor's Blood Rage; though only on behalf of her true love, Richard Rahl. The Con Dar allowed Kahlan the power to use her traditional Confessor's magic without touching a person, and caused her not to need time to recover from its application afterwards.
- In addition, whilst in the midst of the Con Dar, Kahlan could summon immensely powerful blue lightning.
In addition to her magical abilities, Kahlan was a master linguist, having mastered every major language of the Midlands, as well as a majority of the minor ones. As the Mother Confessor, Kahlan was naturally a skilled diplomat and well versed in all matters of state. Kahlan also had a strong knowledge of principles of magic, having been tutored by wizards as a child, though she herself did not possess powers beyond her Confessor's magic.
Having been taught all manner of combat styles by her father, and in greater depth by Richard, Kahlan was a skilled physical combatant. In particular, Kahlan proved more than capable as a swordsman and archer. As the Mother Confessor, Kahlan was well versed in military strategy, and was a tactician comparable to Emperor Jagang.
- “To know Richard is to know who Kahlan is.”
Richard Rahl was, simply put, Kahlan's true love and soul mate. He was also her husband, Seeker, war wizard, and co-ruler of the D'Haran Empire.
Growing up as a Confessor, Kahlan was denied the simple pleasures of having a friend. However, in 40 ACB, when Kahlan met Richard Cypher on her mission to find the First Wizard, she found herself exploring her very first friendship outside of the sisterhood of the Confessors. Richard and Kahlan's friendship grew throughout the Second D'Haran War, as they became unified in their quest to defeat the evil tyrant, Darken Rahl. During this quest, Kahlan found her feelings for Richard growing to the point of love; something she feared greatly, as she had been taught that Confessors were unable to love in the traditional sense without destroying the mind of her partner. Unknown to her however, should a Confessors' partner come to love the Confessor unconditionally, to the exclusion of all else, they would be immune to her power. Indeed, Richard discovered this during the final confrontation with Rahl, allowing the pair to love freely.
After the outbreak of the Imperial Order War Kahlan supported Richard, now the Lord Rahl of D'Hara, in the creation of the D'Haran Empire. Kahlan added her authority as the Mother Confessor to his, and together they acted as the chief opponents of Emperor Jagang and his horde, In the aftermath of the plague pandemic sparked by Jagang, Richard and Kahlan married in a private ceremony in the village of the Mud People. With the release of the chimes the magical precaution taken to ensure that she did not fall pregnant failed, and Kahlan became with child. However, she was viciously beaten by the underlings of Jagang's supporters in Anderith, and as result miscarried and nearly lost her life. Richard became so disillusioned by the attack on his wife that he temporarily withdrew from the war.
Later, when four Sisters of the Dark captured Kahlan and cast the Chainfire spell on her, causing everyone to lose all memory of her, Richard remained adamant that she was more than a simple fantasy. Ultimately, Richard was able to prove Kahlan's existence, and was aided by all of the allies they had amassed together, to undo the dangerous spell. However, Richard was eventually forced to take upon himself the power of Orden to reverse the spell and reunite with the woman he loved. Following the end of the war, Richard and Kahlan took residence at the People's Palace and began their lives together in peace.
Zeddicus Zu'l Zorander
After encountering Richard who eventually led her to his friend, Zedd, the wizard and Mother Confessor worked together to heal Richard, who had been poisoned by a magical thorn. Because of the spell Zedd cast before leaving to Westland, Kahlan had no idea that the First Wizard for whom she searched was really Zedd. However, as the true Seeker of Truth, Richard realizes that the First Wizard is indeed Zedd, and the three of them set off for the Midlands at once.
Zedd, seeing the growing attachment between Richard and Kahlan, warned her that she must be honest with Richard about who and what she is. Kahlan feared doing so because she knew that it would mean the loss of her only friend left in the world. However, after Richard learned the truth and overcame the only obstacle in the way of their relationship—Kahlan's power—the two embraced a future together. As Richard's grandfather, Zedd is both proud and happy for his grandson for having found a way toward happiness with the woman he loves.
When Richard and Kahlan finally get married, Zedd welcomed Kahlan as he would a granddaughter. Like Kahlan, Zedd knows the terrible cost of responsibility and power, and he understands her struggles. He comes to love Kahlan almost as much as he loves Richard.
- “Cara always addressed Kahlan as 'Mother Confessor.' Coming from Cara, Kahlan didn't hear 'Mother Confessor' so much as she heard 'sister.'”
Cara is a Mord-Sith who swore her loyalty to Richard after he gave her her freedom from the House of Rahl. Because of fealty, Cara works tirelessly to protect Kahlan as well as Richard. Over the course of their time together, Cara and Kahlan became extremely close friends, such that Cara eventually named Kahlan a Sister of the Agiel. When the Chainfire spell was used, she forgot about Kahlan, but eventually helped Richard reverse the effects of the magic.
Although Kahlan was taught the dangers of male Confessors prior to her meeting and falling in love with Richard, Kahlan and Richard were warned about having a child by Shota as she foresaw their child would not only be a male confessor but would also inherit Richard's gift. Shota predicted this would have disastrous results. Kahlan was pregnant after the release of the chimes, but lost the child after she suffered a cruel beating at the hands of some thugs in the land of Anderith.
Kahlan had a close relationship with her mother before her death. Kahlan's mother taught her the values and beliefs of a Confessor; which she relied on heavily during the second D'Haran War and the Imperial Order War. In addition to the lessons Kahlan's mother taught her, she learned the art of war from her father and became a brilliant tactician. Whilst she was not close to her half-siblings Cyrilla and Harold Amnell, there was a great mutual respect between the three. Unfortunately, this relationship soured after Cyrilla was forced into insanity. Kahlan's closest sibling relationship was with a fellow Confessor, Dennee, whose mother adopted Kahlan after her own mother died. Dennee's death at the hands of a quad during the second D'Haran War devastated Kahlan.
- “By succession and selection, by right, by oath, and by duty.”
- Mother Confessor of the D'Haran Empire
- More commonly "Mother Confessor of all the Midlands" and previously "First Chair of the Central Council of the Midlands"
- Wife to the Lord Rahl
- Lady Rahl
- Queen of Galea
- Queen of Kelton
- Sister of the Agiel
- Wielder of the Agiel of Denna
- Mother of the chimes
- Bringer of death (self-proclaimed)
- Mud Woman
Behind the scenes
- Terry Goodkind has stated that the idea for the Sword of Truth series originated with the character of Kahlan.
- Should Kahlan have a daughter from Richard, she would quite likely be an extremely powerful Confessor with free control of the Con Dar as well as a sorceress with both sides of the gift and ability with prophecy (therefore possibly a witch woman); if it were to be a son, he would further be a male Confessor, a war wizard, possibly a prophet, and the inheritor of the Lord Rahl bond.
- In Legend of the Seeker, a television series based on the events of the Sword of Truth series, Kahlan is portrayed by actress Bridget Regan. Kahlan's backstory is significantly different in the television series when compared to Terry Goodkind's novels; in Goodkind's novels her father was said to have been kind to her as a child, in the series, it is said that he treated her and Dennee, her biological sister in the series, atrociously. They were then taken from him and raised by Sisters of the Light in Thandore.
- Wizard's First Rule (First appearance)
- Stone of Tears
- Blood of the Fold
- Temple of the Winds
- Soul of the Fire
- Faith of the Fallen
- Pillars of Creation
- Naked Empire
- The Omen Machine
- The Third Kingdom
- Severed Souls