The Shadow Rising: Chapter 39

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Author: Atarah al'Norahn

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A Cup of Wine


Chapter Icon: A Harp

Point of View: Elayne

Setting: Wavedancer, city of Tanchico, Tel'aran'rhiod

Characters: Elayne, Nynaeve, Coine, Bayle Domon, Thom, Juilin, Birgitte, Rendra

Summary

The chapter opens with Elayne, Nynaeve, Thom and Juilin standing on the deck of Wavedancer, prepared to disembark. Nynaeve is asking Coine where she will next sail, and she answers, "To Dantora, and the Aile Jafar, and then on to Cantorin and the Aile Somera, spreading news of the Coramoor, if it pleases the Light." At the same time, Elayne and Jorin are saying their good-byes.

As Nynaeve, Elayne, Thom and Juilin walk down the dock, they see many hungry-faced men, and Elayne thinks that any one of them would kill her if they thought it would mean money for them. As they walk, they hear a familiar voice. "You! It do be you!" It is Bayle Domon. He tells them that he waited as long as he could for them in Falme, but "the time did come when I must sail or watch my ship burn." He tells them that he can help them get a room, as Tanchico "do burst its caulking," and they accept. They hire a sedan chair and soon arrive at an inn called The Three Plum Court. They meet the innkeeper, who's name is Rendra; she reminds Nynaeve of Liandrin.

While Nynaeve, Elayne, Thom, Juilin and Bayle Domon eat, Nynaeve tells the captain about their search for the Black Ajah, saying that they may need his help. He reacts almost with despair. "It do be going to happen again. Falme all over. Maybe it do be time for me to pack up and go." After a while, he agrees to help them, and Thom and Juilin proceed to question him about Tanchico.

Nynaeve gives Bayle Domon a list of the Black Ajah members, and descriptions of what they look like; he promises to have his men keep an eye out for them. Bayle Domon then leaves, and Juilin follows him, intending to have a look around Tanchico. Nynaeve goes to get some sleep, and Thom and Elayne go down to the common room. While Thom performs, Elayne watches him and drinks wine. She can't help but think that he seems oddly familiar, though she can't figure out why. Hours later, when Thom stops performing, Elayne rises to go with him...but it turns out that she has become drunk from all the wine. When she finally gets upstairs, she goes to Thom's room. "I remember," she said. "I was sitting on your knee, and I pulled your mustache...and my mother leaned over your shoulder and laughed at me."

Thom tells her that she should go, and that she needs sleep, but Elayne is persistent. "My mother sat on your knee, too. I saw it. I remember." Thom keeps insisting that she needs sleep, but Elayne is on a roll. "I want to know why Mother sat on your knee. You're a gleeman. My mother would not sit on a gleeman's knee." Thom tells her that he used to be the Court Bard in Caemlyn, and Elayne correctly guesses that he was also Morgase's lover. "I always knew about Gareth Bryne...Gareth Bryne, and you, and this Lord Gaebril Mat said she looks calf-eyes at now...what makes her different from Berelain, tripping every man who catches her eye into her bed." Thom becomes angry and slaps her, then explains that it is lonely to be a queen.

Elayne finally makes it into the room that she and Nynaeve are sharing. "Rand must think I'm crazy, Thom is a bard, and Berelain isn't my mother after all," is her greeting to Nynaeve. Nynaeve proceeds to dunk Elayne's head in a bucket of water and then prepares to go to Tel'aran'rhiod while Elayne watches over her.

The setting changes to Tel'aran'rhiod, from Nynaeve's point of view. She looks around for Egwene, but cannot find her. She wanders around and winds up in a city in the Aiel Waste, which must be Rhuidean. She sees a man who is wearing breeches and a bright blue coat...she thinks to herself that he is certainly not an Aiel.

Birgitte shows up and warns Nynaeve that she must leave. "If that one sees you, you are dead, or worse." Nynaeve is shocked to see a hero out of the legends in Tel'aran'rhiod, but before she can get Birgitte to answer any of her questions she disappears and Nynaeve is alone again.

The setting switches to the Green in Emond's Field (still in Tel'aran'rhiod). She sees Birgitte again, this time ducking behind the corner of Ailys Candwin's house. She runs after Birgitte, trying to catch her, but instead she runs into a man in a dark coat who looks like Lan. He raises his bow to shoot her, but Nynaeve wakes up just in time.

When Nynaeve has awaken, she tells Elayne of the man and of Birgitte, and then they go to sleep.

In the morning, Elayne is less than pleased with her condition. Both Elayne and Nynaeve go to see Thom in his room, and inquire after Juilin. The thief-catcher appears, looking as if he has been engaged in a fight. He tells them that he thinks he has found one of the Black Aes Sedai. They all talk of who will be the first to find the Darkfriends. Elayne and Nynaeve decide to go out searching, but Thom and Juilin attempt to talk them out of it since the Black Aes Sedai know the girls and might attempt to harm them. Nynaeve says that she has taken care of it, and when Mistress Rendra appears with breakfast, she tells Elayne and Nynaeve that their Taraboner disguises are ready.

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