The morning after the battle, Mat sits alone and contemplates recent events. He has numerous minor injuries from the battle, but Daerid's ointment stopped the bleeding. He tries to avoid thinking about the fact that he killed Couladin. Couladin's head now hangs on a post. The Aiel are celebrating and getting drunk with the Tairens and Cairhienin. Daerid and Estean stagger by with a drunk Aielman. Kin Tovere, Jol and Cail poke through the debris of the tower. Among other things, Mat is worried about another attack from Sammael. He does not know if the foxhead medallion protects against saidin. Melindhra comes up with a pitcher of brandy. She is proud that he sought honor and glory for himself.
Nalesean and Talmanes come up. High Lord Meilan has offered Rand a procession into Cairhien. Lord Dobraine, Lord Maringil, and Lady Colavaere also paid a call on Rand. They want Mat at the head of the procession with Rand. Despite his protestations they declare him their general and vow their loyalty to him. Talmanes and Nalesean do not like each other but in this they agree. They say he also needs a banner. Up on the hill Mat sees Moiraine and Lan. Moiraine says something and Lan seems to make a violent protest. Mat fervently hopes for some way out of this mess.
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Rand wakes in his tent. It is midmorning. Aviendha tells him that Moiraine Healed him. Asmodean is there as well. Aviendha still wears the silver necklace and Rand wonders again where she got it. Asmodean comments that Moiraine has recovered and has already been by twice this morning. He indirectly says that he provided a small amount of Healing as well, but that is not one of his Talents. Aviendha reports that the Miagoma, Codarra, Daryne and Shiande are all camped nearby. They will eventually come to Rand. The Wise Ones are conducting the negotiations and Egwene is with them. Sorilea and Bair dragged her from her bed. Thousands of Shaido were taken prisoner, but most escaped across the Gaelin River. Rand is astounded when she tells him that Mat killed Couladin. Rand wonders why Sammael did not return to finish him off. He remembers that Sammael was Tel Janin Aellinsar and that Asmodean was Joar Addam Nessosin. He thinks he has at least made a start against Sammael by sending Weiramon back to Tear.
Rand thinks about getting up, but he does not see his clothes anywhere. Rand tells Asmodean to bring Jeade'en, but Aviendha does not let him go. Asmodean tells Rand that Meilan and the other six High Lords came at dawn to see him. The Wise Ones led by Sorilea, Amys, Bair and Melaine and the Maidens led by Sulin would not let them. The High Lords including Torean, Simaan, Aracome and Gueyam eventually left in a fury with Meilan shouting that he was giving Cairhien to the Dragon Reborn. Asmodean says they are all dangerous men. Before them, a dozen Cairhienin lords and ladies came. They were also sent away, but they brought the same message of fealty to the Dragon Reborn. Two were Lord Dobraine and Lady Colavaere. They hinted at offering Rand the Sun Throne. Rand says he already has plans for who will sit on the Sun Throne. Rand intends to pay a surprise call on Cairhien and sends Asmodean to get his horse.
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Notes (Possible Spoilers)#
[#1] It does. (LoC,Ch44)
[#2] This is the beginning of the Band of the Red Hand.
[#3] No clue what this might be about.
[#4] It was a gift from Egwene. (TFoH,Ch7)
[#5] Weiramon and his army will play a crucial if unexpected role in Rand's plan for Sammael. (ACoS,Ch41)
[#6] Because Aviendha is sitting on them. (TFoH,Ch46)
[#7] The other two are Hearne and Maraconn. (TFoH,Ch46)
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