Ilain Dormaile

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A similar entry appears in the Wheel of Time Companion confirming the information available in the main story arc.

Author: Atarah al'Norahn

General

Ilain Dormaile, originally from Cairhien, owns a banking house in Tar Valon.

She is described as a slim, graying little woman, who is a hand shorter than Moiraine. She usually wears a solemn expression.

Ilain is a very discreet woman; Moiraine thinks to herself that "the grave is less discreet than Ilain Dormaile". She says that she would never reveal the affairs of her patrons in any respect.

(Reference: New Spring, Chapter 13)

Timeline

  • A man named Ries Gorthanes from Cairhien appears at Ilain's banking house, dressed as a Tower Guard. He presents her with an order supposedly signed by Tamra Ospenya, but she can tell that it is a fake and has him imprisoned. He was trying to pry into Moiraine's affairs, wanting to know how much money Moiraine has been dispensing and to whom. He manages to escape before the Tower Guards can come for him by bribing one of Ilain's employees. When Ilain finds out about the bribery, she has the young man who worked for her strapped, and then hires him out as a bilgeboy on a ship bound for Tear (NS, Ch. 13).
  • Moiraine goes to see Ilain Dormaile nine days later. Ilain tells Moiraine about Ries Gorthanes; she supposedly sent a letter about it to Moiraine in the Tower, but Moiraine never got it. Moiraine is convinced that the Hall of the Tower got a hold of it and kept it from her in an attempt to convince her that they have decided against making her the Queen of Cairhien (NS, Ch. 13).
  • After hearing about the issue with Ries Gorthanes, Moiraine tells Ilain to transfer a suitable recompense into her own account. Properly, Ilain objects twice before accepting (NS, Ch. 13).
  • Before she leaves Tar Valon, Moiraine stops at Mistress Dormaile's banking house. Ilain gives her several letters-of-rights in various amounts, and four fat leather purses with two hundred crowns in silver and gold between them. Mistress Dormaile doesn't ask any questions, though she offers Moiraine the use of four of her footmen as an escort, which Moiraine accepts (NS, Ch. 14).

Miscellaneous

  • Her banking house is in what appears to be a small palace. It is a southern style building. It has a high, white dome and narrow spires at the four corners. There are broad, marble stairs climbing to a wide, white-columned portico. The stones carvings, which are friezes of vines and leaves, are both well done and simple. It is a nice building, but there is a restraint about it (NS, Ch. 13).
  • Part of the reason why Moiraine chooses Ilain as her banker when she first arrives in Tar Valon is because Ilain's elder brother was the banker of Moiraine's father in Cairhien; her elder brother still handles Moiraine's accounts in Cairhien (NS, Ch. 13).

Quotes

"A slight smile broke Mistress Dormaile's usually solemn expression when she saw the shawl, and she spread her dark, red-banded skirts in a precise curtsey, neither too brief nor too deep. But then, she had given the same courtesy even when Moiraine had come in an Accepted's dress. After all, she knew how much Moiraine had left with the bank on her first arrival in the city, and how much more her estates had sent over the years. Still, the smile was genuine." (Moiraine; New Spring, Chapter 13).

"He (Gorthanes) presented an order purportedly signed and sealed by the Amyrlin Seat directing me to lay open your finances to him. Unfortunately for him, I know Tamra Ospenya's signature well, and the White Tower knows I would never reveal the affairs of my patrons in any respect. I had several footmen overpower him and lock him in an empty strongroom, and then I sent for real Tower Guards. I regret failing to take the opportunity to thrash his mistress or master's name out of him, but as you know, White Tower law takes a dim view of that." (Ilain to Moiraine; New Spring, Chapter 13).