TPoD: Unexpected Absences

Egwene POV#

The next morning before dawn Egwene sends Sheriam to call a meeting of the Hall. There are now half again as many novices as sisters. Egwene almost runs into Carlinya embarrassing her. When the Hall gathers she announces that they will rest for two or three days. Romanda leaves followed by Magla, Saroiya and Varilin. Lelaine leaves with Faiselle, Takima and Lyrelle. Carlinya, Beonin, Nisao, Anaiya, Morvrin and Myrelle are still upset and scared at having to swear fealty to Egwene. Egwene sees Morvrin talking to Takima and wonders why she did not chose Janya or Escaralde if she wanted a Sitter of her own Ajah.[1] Back in her study, Selame serves her tea. Egwene and Siuan go over petitions from Sitters Moria Karentanis, Malind Nachenin and Salita Toranes on how to solve their money problems. Egwene must learn more of the White Tower's history from Siuan. She will avoid the fate of Shein Chunla if she can, but she will not remain impotent like Cemaile Sorenthaine was.

More Egwene POV

Aran'gar POV#

Aran'gar buries a body in the snow.[2] She thinks about tonight's dreams.[3] She could wipe out all these Aes Sedai, but the Great Lord would not be pleased.

More Aran'gar POV

Egwene POV#

Lelaine accompanied by Faolain, then Romanda accompanied by Theodrin enter her study.[4] They want to talk about Rand visiting the Sea Folk. Romanda wants to approach the Sea Folk in Cairhien. Lelaine wants Elayne and Nynaeve to pass a message to Merilille to contact the Sea Folk in Caemlyn. They refuse to believe that Windfinders are better at Cloud Dancing than Aes Sedai. Chesa brings tea and complains that Meri has wandered off. The Sitters leave.

Siuan goes to get lunch for them; Selame has wandered off, too. Siuan has a report of soldiers moving south out of Kandor.[5] All that Egwene has heard from the Wise Ones is that Merana is waiting for Rand to return. There are rumors that Mattin Stepaneos was either killed by Rand or kidnapped. Siuan thinks there is an odd pattern among the Sitters.[6] The Sitters chosen in Salidar are too young. After Romanda and Moria, Escaralde is the oldest and she is about seventy. The Hall has rarely had more than one Sitter under a hundred, but in Salidar, "here we have eight."[7] Lelaine, Lyrelle and Moria are the Blue Sitters.

Romanda returns and orders Siuan to leave. She found out about the meeting with Pelivar and Arathelle. She tells Egwene to delegate her to do the talking. As soon as Romanda leaves Lelaine enters with an identical message. She told the entire Hall about Egwene's plot. Siuan returns and confirms that everyone now knows. She heard from Bryne that the meeting is set for tomorrow and that Aemlyn will also attend. Egwene is pleased that her plan is working![8]

Sheriam Bayanar POV#

That evening, as Sheriam enters her tent, she is shielded, stripped and beaten because she does not know Egwene's plan. She wishes she never spoke to a sister in the Hall.[9]

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Notes (Possible Spoilers)#

[#1] Why does Egwene think Escaralde or Janya would be more likely choices than Takima? Does this discussion contribute to Takima's cooperation in the War Vote in TPoD,Ch19?
[#2] Meri and/or Selame.
[#3] Egwene has been having nightmares and evidently Aran'gar is the cause.
[#4] Faolain and Theodrin swore fealty to Egwene so they must be acting as her spies. (ACoS,Ch11)
[#5] The Borderlands leaders. (TPoD,Prologue)
[#6] We get a resolution on this puzzle in TGS,Ch43.
[#7] The original text read "and here we have nine" which caused a lot of discussion and theorizing. This correction brings the statement in line with CoT,Ch18 and TGS,Ch43.
[#8] All is explained in TPoD,Ch19.
[#9] What are Sheriam's true loyalties and who is her tormentor? We learn more in TGS,Ch25.

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