The Gathering Storm: Chapter 16
Chapter Icon: Flame of Tar Valon
Point of View: Egwene
Setting: The White Tower
Egwene continues to impress sisters who interact with her and eventually she is sent to the kitchen to do chores. Later on she serves at a dinner Elaida has with five Sitters. She confronts Elaida about the way she is ruling the Tower, eventually calling her a coward. Elaida beats her senselessly and proclaims that Egwene is a Darkfriend.
Egwene shells walnuts for the three Whites. Ferane asks her what she would have done in Elaida's situation. Egwene says she would have sent sisters to Rand's home village to learn what sort of man he is. She tells them she knows Rand to be a good man at heart and would have sent sisters to offer guidance or spies if he rejected them. She tells them he has restored order to Cairhien, Tear and Illian and gained the respect of the Aiel. Ferane interprets this that Egwene would let him sow chaos, but she says without information, what Elaida did was lunacy.
Ferane tells Egwene that she still has not said how she would deal with the situation. She says she would send three Aes Sedai to honour him, a Gray, a Blue and a Green. Tesan is impressed with her logic. Egwene says that Elaida's delegation is flawed because it was sent by a Red and that she can't see the logic of raising a Red to Amyrlin in the days of the Dragon Reborn, as they "deal with", not "work with" men. Ferane sees the sense in this.
Egwene mentions that because of Elaida's bungling he has taken some Aes Sedai captive and allowed others to be bonded by Asha'man. Egwene tells her that they can't deal with Rand until the White Tower is mended. Ferane says that by continuing to claim to be Amyrlin, Egwene maintains the division. Egwene replies that even if she renounced the role and persuaded the rebels to accept Elaida, the internal divisions would still hold. Miyasi claims the Whites didn't cause the tension, but Egwene says it is only logical given Elaida and the Hall's actions. She persuades them to reach out to other sisters. She tells them that Suana of the Yellow will invite them to dinner with her and they should accept and take it in a public place. Ferane tells her she would find a welcome in the White.
She leaves and Katerine doses her with forkroot, telling her that she is to have no more lessons and instead will just do chores. In the kitchens, Laras takes her to a fireplace to store her until night when she intends to help Egwene escape. Egwene refuses saying that someone has to fight Elaida. After her duties, Katerine tells her she is to attend Elaida that night. At dinner, Egwene sees there are five other Aes Sedai, a Sitter from each Ajah apart from Blue and Red. Shevan says that the rebels must be given a chance to reconcile. Elaida refuses and insults first the Gray, then Rubinde. Shevan mentions the Seanchan and Elaida says there is no need to worry about them. She instructs Egwene to say she has been spreading lies but Egwene tells the truth, that she is a Dreamer and that the Seanchan will attack the Tower and are a serious threat. She is told to bow or Elaida will use the Power to make her. Egwene asks if she intends to control everyone that way and brings up the fourth oath Elaida had considered. Elaida starts to weave a gag of air, but Egwene says an Amyrlin should be able to persuade her opponents, impressing Yukiri. She quotes Balladare Arandaille on the role of an Amyrlin, impressing Shevan and asks Elaida what she had intended to do with Rand if she had succeeded in capturing him and asks her how she expected him to fulfill the prophecies. She says she has been trying to heal the scars within the Tower while Elaida has been bullying Sitters and insulting Ajahs. Doesine murmurs agreement and Elaida realises she has lost the discussion and ends it.
Egwene calls her a coward and says she would also name her a Darkfriend but imagines the Dark One would be ashamed to be associated with her. Elaida loses control, calling Egwene a Darkfriend and lashing out with the Power. Rubinde tries to stop it, but Elaida forces her down. She sends servants to declare to the city that Egwene is a Darkfriend.
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Visions and Prophecies
- "'As the plow breaks the earth shall he break the lives of men, and all that was shall be consumed in the fire of his eyes, the trumpets of war shall sound at his footsteps, the ravens feed at his voice, and he shall wear a crown of swords.'"
- "How was he to cause war, as the prophecies say he must? How was he to break the nations and bind them to him? How could he 'slay his people with the sword of peace' or 'bind the nine moons to serve him' if he was locked away? Do the prophecies say that he will be 'unfettered'? Do they not speak of the 'chaos of his passing?' How can anything pass at all if he is kept in chains?"