"You've made one real mistake in it all. You should never have touched the girl."
   —Thom Merrilin
For the chapter with the same title in The Fires of Heaven, see The Fires of Heaven/Chapter 40.

External summary

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Setting: Cairhien, Falme

Point of view: Thomdril Merrilin

Thom is on his way back to his hotel room early in the morning after the night's festivities. The nobles at Lord Barthanes' party questions him about Rand after Rand talked with him.  Dena is on the bed, dead with her throat cut. He hears a sound behind him and spins with his knives and kills one attacker immediately wounds the other. He questions the attacker that is still alive and he tells Thom he is getting information on Rand for Lord Barthanes.  He kills the second telling him they should have left Dena alone. The innkeeper Zera comes in. Zera tells him that the men really worked for King Galldrian.  She tells him she will take care of the bodies, and he has to get out of Cairhien. Thom tells her that he has someone he has to kill before he leaves. Later that night, King Galldrian is assassinated. Lord Barthanes was also killed after the party, torn to pieces by someone or something.[1]

Point of view: Padan Fain

Fain approaches Falme after questioning locals about the Seanchan. He finds that much of what he dismissed as fables is actually true. He arrives at the house and headquarters of High Lord Turak.  He tells the officer in the street that he has something of interest to their boss.  The soldiers bring Fain to the Turak along with the chest containing the Horn of Valere and the Ruby-hilted dagger. Turak opens the chest and removes the Horn, which Fain identifies. They move to Turak's trophy room, where the Horn is set up as a prominent display.  Fain tries to take the dagger which he claims is his, and Turak's servant stops him, saying a hand that steals from Lord Turak is cut off. Turak questions Fain's claim to ownership since the dagger was in a chest he couldn't open. Turak plans to give the Horn to the Empress since trying to keep it or use it would be overly ambitious and likely end with him in the hands of the Seekers for Truth.  Turak says he wants Fain to entertain him, telling him stories.  He says he will keep an eye out for the darkfriends who pursue Fain.  








  1. The manner of his death is consistent with the way the gholam kills. But there is no evidence that the gholam had been released at this point, nor is there a compelling argument for why the gholam would be sent after Barthanes.

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