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Mare is actually no-ghost fully dead, right?
Just wondering, since she's the only allomancer to ever be sentenced to the pits, so she's presumably the only person with a powerful soul to die right next to Ruin's Well.
Or is Ruin Energy inherently the type of thing that won't (can't) extend the life of a ghost?
There is no cognitive shadow of Mare hanging around.
Has a kandra impersonated Mare?
What's up with Mare? Here's my Conspiracy Wall about her.
TL;DR Paalm was Mare. She spent most of Shadows of Self trying to imitate Kelsier.
This one is a RAFO, I'm afraid. As I've said, there are things about Mare I haven't gone into.
Putting aside whether this theory was accurate...
Have you seeded anything else in the books that this level of newspaper-clippings-connected-with-string thinking would be necessary to figure out?
I have put things in like this, but generally I don't think I'm putting in enough foreshadowing for them to be recognized--I'm just working under an assumption on my part, which then reflects in the writing, which then people put together. (Which sometimes surprises me.)
So, I don't generally put in puzzles this complex intentionally to make people figure them out. But the puzzles do end up in the stories, and can be figured out, nonetheless.
Also note that while Mare was an Allomancer, she wasn't what one would call a "dangerous" Allomancer. She was a Tineye, which isn't one of the top tier martial powers. She couldn't have used atium, and even if she HAD somehow found [tin], she'd simply have been able to hear and see better. Which would have made her better at finding the atium.
The Allomancers to keep out of the Pits would have been Lurchers or Coinshots (who could have destroyed the crystals), and to a lesser extent Thugs (who could be difficult to control.) Mistborn, of course, needed to be kept far, far away, lest they get their hands on atium.
There's more going on here, of course. If I ever write the Kelsier short story that talks about him discovering the Eleventh Metal, I will get into why the Inquisitors weren't given Mare as they wanted. The Lord Ruler specifically chose to send her to the Pits rather than handing her over to the Inquisitors. (Note: She wouldn't have ended up on a hook. Inquisitors had other...uses for skaa Mistings they captured. See book three.)
Is finding out what the deal was with Mare, is that an Era 2 thing we're going find out or is that...
No, unfortunately it is to be left, probably, as a mystery. It is a minor secret that I do not consider a major Cosmere thing, more of a backstory thing. I might eventually get around to it. The chances of it factoring in are very, very slim. I stay closed lipped about it because there is a part of me that thinks I will work it into Secret History 2, sort of like flash-backing material, but I'm not 100% sure I will.
Was Mare a kandra?
Good question. No, she was not.