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Setting: Tarwin's Gap, Field of Merrilor


Point of view: al'Lan Mandragoran

Lan's armies continue holding the Trollocs at the Gap but they know that the Shadowspawn will overrun them eventually. Lan witnesses Bulen's death, but refuses to mourn. Instead, he talks with his men about the heroic deeds of their fallen comrades, and they begin to laugh and praised the honored dead. With Narishma's help Lan leaves Bulen's body on the top of a mountain where he will be preserved until he can be buried properly. Suddenly the the ground starts shaking and rumbling, and tiny rents appear in the rock, cracks that are way too dark to be normal. The nothingness behind the cracks soon disappears, but Lan is worried about what he saw. He heads to the Saldean camp. There he talks with Lord Agelmar about how tired the men are. Lan refuses to retreat and leave Malkier to the Shadow a second time. Agelmar calls him selfish and tells him it's irresponsible to throw his life away with the Last Battle upon them and that their task is to hurt the Shadow even if it means falling back. An emergency signal draws Lan's attention and he storms out to help the defensive lines.

He realizes that eventually he will do what has to be done and abandon Malkier again.

Point of view: Egwene al'Vere

Egwene's army is moving to Kandor. She talks with Gawyn, who is now her husband as they were married the previous night. He is obviously impatient to fight the Shadow. Silviana discusses Elayne's proposal for a stationary hospital with Egwene. The Amyrlin agrees eventually, but she is worried that the White Tower is not a suitable location, as it has been compromised twice by the Seanchan. Instead, she suggests Mayene as the place where the wounded will be transferred and healed by the Yellow Sisters, the Novices and the Accepted.

Egwene goes to meet Leilwin. The Amyrlin offers her a chance to repay her debt for not getting rid of the bracelets. The Seanchan woman swears to serve and protect Egwene under the Light and by her hope of salvation and rebirth. Thinking that the only person that would break that kind of oath would be a Darkfriend, Egwene then questions her about Seanchan military, arms, strength and the plans of the Empress.

Point of view: Rand al'Thor

Rand arrives at Elayne's tent and waits for her to arrive. They talk about the war and their children and have dinner together. Rand tells her what happened atop Dragonmount and shares his reluctance to send people to fight and die in his name. Elayne tells him he should not deny the people their right to fight and defend what they love. Rand explains to her how the Pattern works by trying to balance good and evil, and says that the miraculous signs around him since his time on Dragonmount are the result of the Pattern balancing out the evil effect of the Dark One's touch on the world. Rand gives Elayne a small statue of a woman - a Seed that is used for creating angreal. In return, Elayne gives him a dagger ter'angreal that prevents the Shadow from seeing the holder.




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