TPoD: Message from the M'Hael

Rand POV#

Back in camp Rand is using Mattin Stepaneos' gaudy tent. He is served by Boreane Carivin. Damer Flinn is there and tells Rand that Torval arrived and is waiting with Narishma.

Rand goes to meet them with Dashiva and Hopwil. Rand promoted Flinn, Narishma and Morr as well. Torval tells Rand there are definitely Aes Sedai in Murandy. Rand tells him to leave them alone. Torval brought a message from Taim. There are now twenty-nine Asha'man, ninety-seven Dedicated and three hundred twenty-two soldiers at the Black Tower. He has about fifty recruiting parties bringing in three or four every day. He harvested "that blackberry bush" himself getting a "surprising number of berries."[1] When Rand presses, Torval adds that there have been nineteen deserters, also thirteen burned out, twenty-eight dead, and ten insane whom Taim poisoned.

Fedwin Morr arrives with news that the Seanchan will soon move on Illian next. They have been in Ebou Dar barely more than a week, but they have already moved soldiers along the Venir Mountains all the way to Arran Head. Between Arran Head and the city of Illian lies the Kabal Deep. Morr tells them saidin is worst northeast of Ebou Dar where there was an explosion.[2] Dashiva says saidin misbehaving is impossible. Rand once asked the question of how to cleanse saidin.[3] The answer he got was a riddle that Herid Fel said stated "sound principles, in both high philosophy and natural philosophy." Rand thinks he knows the answer.[4] Rand realizes he has been speaking aloud. Torval, Narishma, Morr and Hopwil look at him with wonderment and hope.[5] Dashiva looks poleaxed. Rand gives orders to the Asha'man. Torval heads back to the Black Tower with orders for Taim.[6] Rand sends Narishma on a special mission.[7] Lews Therin's voice returns. Weiramon, Gregorin, Tolmeran, Rosana and Semaradrid arrive with news that the men nearby acquiesced.

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Notes (Possible Spoilers)#

[#1] Scouting the Two Rivers for Asha'man. (WH,Prologue)
[#2] Exactly where the Bowl of the Winds was used.
[#3] Of the Aelfinn during his trip through the twisted red doorway. (TSR,Ch15)
[#4] The riddle is never made clear, but the application of the answer is revealed in WH,Ch35.
[#5] This revelation is likely the impetus for the assassination attempt in TPoD,Ch29.
[#6] And to bring back a lot more Asha'man. (TPoD,Ch21)
[#7] To fetch Callandor. (TPoD,Ch24)

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