ToM: A Backhanded Request

Morgase POV#

Morgase looks out from her tent at Whitebridge and Andor. She goes to look for Gill passing Faile and Bavin Rockshaw. Galad and the Whitecloaks have joined them. She finds Gill, Lini, Lamgwin and Breane, but Tallanvor is not with them. She thinks she must get to Caemlyn to aid Elayne. They are preparing to leave when Tallanvor returns from Whitebridge. He wants to talk to her alone but she is reluctant. She learned from Taringail that marriage is dangerous so she never made Thom or Bryne her official consort. Gaebril reinforced the danger to her. He is still hurt that she rejected him, but she reminds him that he never really asked her. Lini returns with every intent of dragging them off to Perrin, but Tallanvor finally asks her properly and she accepts.

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Perrin POV#

Kevlyn Torr shows Perrin a stand of trees suddenly gone dead and dry overnight. Perrin tells him to harvest it for firewood. Carts have returned from Whitebridge with metal and forges. Neald cannot remember what he did to create Mah'alleinir but he can make weapons that will not dull. The Aiel want more. Grady, Annoura and Masuri in a circle hold large gateway open for refugees returning to Caemlyn. He sent a messenger to Elayne requesting an audience. Supply carts return with foodstuffs while Faile watches. Perrin warns her that he suspects Bavin is not entirely honest and she smells satisfied.[1]

He also realized that Berelain and Galad are attracted to each other. Lini arrives with Morgase and Tallanvor in tow. Perrin is confused that they now want him to marry them. Galad and Berelain arrive. As they walk up Galad tucks a letter with a red seal in his pocket.[2] Morgase and Tallanvor profess their love for each other and Perrin brusquely tells them they are married.

Perrin still has an army of seventy thousand, mostly refugees and ex-mercenaries trained under Dannil and Tam. He is bewildered when something taps him on the back of the head. It happens again and Perrin is delighted to find Mat there. Mat caught another badger. There are no more swirling colors now that they are together.[3] Perrin excitedly asks about the others, Thom, Nynaeve, but Mat interrupts to warn him about assassins. He tells Perrin to meet him at The Happy Throng. He asks to borrow an Asha'man for a gateway[4] then returns through the gateway to Caemlyn. Perrin chuckles as he tries to ease the poor badger.[5]

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Notes (Possible Spoilers)#

[#1] She already has the situation well in hand. (ToM,Ch16)
[#2] Can this be another of Verin's letters? Who delivered it and what can be the content?
[#3] An interesting effect, but it is not obvious what it means beyond the fact that Rand, Mat and Perrin must all be together at the end.
[#4] To Travel to the Tower of Ghenjei.
[#5] A play on the title to TDR,Ch42 rumored to be a private joke between Robert Jordan and his wife Harriet.

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