|<<< The Light of the World >>>|
|Setting: Tower of Ghenjei|
- Point of view: Mat Cauthon
The men stand in a star shaped room, with five hallways leading off in different directions. Matrim Cauthon recalls only having the one corridor to choose from last time. They see figures moving in the shadow, so Thom starts playing his flute again. Noal finds the remains of the melted Twisted redstone doorframe. One of the Finn steps forward and greets Mat as the son of battles. He offers to take the men where they want to go for a price. The other Eelfinn start to dance around the group taunting them. Thom puts his flute away as the music doesn't seem to be affecting them anymore. Mat throws his dice out. One of the Eelfinn scuttles out on all fours. Mat strikes at it but his Ashandarei passes through it. During the confusion another Eelfinn leaps out and steals Mat's dice. Thom throws an iron knife striking the Eelfinn in the shoulder. Blood from the Eelfinn falls to the ground. The blood begins to steam up, with shapes of twisted faces in it. Mat curses himself for using the wrong end of the ashandarei and spins it around to the end banded with iron. Mat lifts his weapon and hits one across the face, crunching bone in the process. Mat makes to stride after his fallen foe, warning Mat to not venture into the darkness. A group of Eelfinn start stalking forward holding bronze knives. The darkness seems to close onto the group as the Eelfinn approach. Some close on Mat and duck out of the way. Mat realizes its a distraction and spins on some Eelfinn attacking him from behind. Thom starts throwing knives at the Eelfinn but misses. Mat lights a nightflower given to him by Aludra and throws it into the darkness. It ignites lighting the room in a bright light, causing the Eelfinn to scream in pain. Mat then closes his eyes and spins around till he is dizzy. He then leads the men in the direction he is facing which is completely in shadow, and not one of the five hallways. It grows just about completely black before they emerge into another five sided corridor. Mat thinks of Birgitte Silverbow when she was trapped in here in her former life, probably walking past this corridor without even seeing it. Mat keeps walking forward. He notices no dust on the floor this time and wonders if they cleaned it. They finally arrive at a door. Noal keeps trying to assign logic to what is going on, but his explanations are becoming more flimsy. They push their way through the door and enter the Chamber of Bonds. Moiraine Damodred floats in the center, white mist covering her and the Ivory bracelet on her left wrist. Mat looks at her with an extreme variation of emotions. Moiraine had pulled him out of the Two Rivers but had set him on his path to this point. Mat steps forward to pull her out of the mist, but burns his fingers as soon as he touches the mist. Thom steps forward, unconcerned about the hot steam, reaches in and pulls Moiraine out.  He wraps Moiraine in his gleeman's cloak. Thom confirms that she lives and takes the ivory bracelet off her arm, pocketing it. A voice speaks out telling them that the bracelet is a very powerful Angreal. Eight Eelfinn stand on the eight pedestals at the front of the chamber, four male and four female. Mat warns his two companions to keep quiet. Mat tells the group that they must abide by pacts that are made here. One of the Eelfinn tells Mat that the bargain has been made. The others lean forward smelling Mat. They tell Mat that a sacrifice must be made. Mat asks for the way back be restored, with no blockages or changing routes. Just a direct route back. Mat also states that the foxes cannot try and harm them. Mat also demands to take Moiraine. One Eelfinn tells Mat his request is expensive, what will he pay for them. Another says the price has been set. Within himself he knows the price, told to him by the Aelfinn.  He also knows he will pay it as the fate of the world lies on his decision. Mat agrees to give up half the light of the world. Done one of Eelfinn cries as they all leap at Mat. Thoma and Noal move forward to help Mat, but he tells them to stay back as this is what needs to happen. One of the Eelfinn steps forward and thrusts his sharpened nails straight into Mat's left eye-socket, then pulls out the eye.  Mat drops to his knees and screams in agony. The Eelfinn stand around Mat, feeding of his emotions. Mat howls, feeling like his socket is one fire. Mat slowly pulls himself together and stands. The Eelfinn all look like they are drunk off so much emotion. The one who had grabbed Mat's eye collapses to the ground. Noal and Thom come to Mat's side. Mat picks his hat off the floor and looks around, realizing that it did seem like he had lost half the light of the world. Thom is bitter as he feels he should have been the one to lose an eye, but Mat tells him it was his choice if he was to save the world. They all turn to Moiraine and Mat wonders what important part Moiraine has left to play. They decide to make their way out of the hall and back to the entrance they made. The path is dead straight, as per Mat's stipulation of his bargain. Thom carries Moiraine tenderly, and Mat wonders what he missed between the two. They pass by Eelfinn standing in the shadows. They make no attempt to attack them. Mat feels pretty happy with his negotiation skills, but is annoyed that he lost his dice. Noal tells Mat that he is quite rusty with the Old Tongue, but he is sure that Mat said that the foxes were no allowed to hurt the group. Mat agrees. Noal asks about the Aelfinn. Out of the shadows directly ahead stalk the Aelfinn, carrying long bronze swords. Mat tells his group to run away from them.
Redstone doorframe destroyed