ACoS: Pitfalls and Tripwires

Rand POV#

That night he is holding saidin. If a blade cut off his hand he would feel the pain but keep going.[1] It does not make him as sick any more and that worries him. He goes through all the things that are worrying him: Why did Berelain not tell him about Annoura? Who are the Aes Sedai who just arrived? Why are the rebels camped south of Cairhien? Rhuarc has scouts looking for Sevanna. Elayne and Aviendha. Perrin and Faile, are their loyalties to him or to each other? Perrin was with Kiruna a long time. He thinks he will trust Mat and Perrin and Min.

Min is asleep, worn out from days of Galina's questioning. Lews Therin raves at him to wipe them out. Holding saidin brings him out. He began seeing flashes of color in the chest after beatings by Galina, Katerine and Erian.[2] They make him think of Mat and Perrin.

Sulin brings him out of his reverie. He is with twenty Maidens and three Asha'man - Jonan Adley, soldier, Eben Hopwil, Dedicated and Fedwin Morr, Dedicated. Fedwin is dressed as a merchant. The Maidens include Sulin, Enaila, Somara, Jalani, Corana and Nerilea. Rand thinks Taim made good weapons of the Asha'man. He has three destinations tonight, one for him alone [3]. Rand opens a gateway to the Caemlyn palace stables. He can sense the strength of the three Asha'man as they pass because their holding as much saidin as they can. Fedwin is the strongest. Men channelers grow strong faster than women. All eight Asha'man that Rand brought can make a gateway. Lews Therin rants about killing Sammael and Demandred. Rand follows the Maidens and Asha'man though the gateway to Caemlyn and lets it close. Lews Therin is puzzled by Alanna's bond. Nerilea goes to the palace to find Bashere and Bael who leads the Aiel in Caemlyn. Five Maidens hood and bind Rand and Fedwin and take them into the palace. In the palace they meet Bashere and Bael, clan chief of Goshien with Deira, Melaine and Dorindha. Bair told Melaine that Colavaere is not important. Rand tells them she's gone. Rand asks if Elayne is back. All the secrecy was in case Elayne or Aviendha had returned!

Bashere reports rumors of Aes Sedai with an army which could be Mat's[4] in Murandy or Altara. He supposes they are the ones who fled when Siuan was deposed. Bael wants to attack the White Tower. Rand says he will leave Elaida alone if she leaves him alone. Rand gets out maps.[5] He needs Mat if Perrin will not lead the army. From Lews Therin Rand knows Sammael was at his best defending. Rand thinks about Sammael's hillforts in the Doirlon Hills just inside Illian. Bashere is worried about Caraline, Toram and Darlin. Dyelin Taravin has imprisoned Naean Arawn and Elenia Sarand for claiming the Andor throne. Rand is worried about finding his angreal before confronting Sammael. Melaine tells Rand there are nine Aes Sedai at The Silver Swan, eight arrived almost a month ago just after Rand left. Some come and go, a few Reds twice, probably scouting the Black Tower.[6] Rand wonders why Taim did not mention them. Bashere is building an army with Taim's rejects.

Word of Colavaere's coronation arrived three days ago. Naean and Elenia declared for the throne. Dyelin, Pelivar and Luan arrested them and the next day made Dyelin regent in Elayne's name. Lir, Arymilla and the others who supported Naean or Elenia have fled the city. Rand is leaving Fedwin as a secret messenger and taking the other two Asha'man to Lord Semaradrid and High Lord Weiramon. He will send the troops forward tonight.

More Rand POV

Notes (Possible Spoilers)#

[#1] More foreshadowing that Rand will lose a hand.
[#2] These flashes will continue to grow (ACoS,Ch18, ACoS,Ch41) and to include Mat and Perrin. (WH,Ch11)
[#3] The third trip will be to Rhuidean to fetch the two access keys. (ACoS,Ch33)
[#4] None of them knows about Mat, Elayne, and Aviendha being in Ebou Dar.
[#5] The rest of this chapter is somewhat disjointed as Rand (POV) is distracted by his maps and his own thoughts while conversations are going on.
[#6] These are probably members of Toveine's party sent to take out the Black Tower. (ACoS,Prologue)

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