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Lord of Chaos, Chapters 19-21

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Basel Gill


Chapter 19 (Matters of Toh): Lews Therin is starting to take over Rand's dreams now, apparently. A small crowd of Aiel, Tairens, and Cairhienin are waiting for him in the morning. Berelain is there too, for some reason the Wise Ones think a great deal of her. I haven't yet figured out what she has done to impress them so much. Berelain tells him that the hanging he ordered for an Aiel murdering a Cairhienin will be carried out that morning. Rand tries to impress upon her that he doesn't need to make a decision on every murder; she has been placed in charge of Cairhien and needs to take care of these things herself. Berelain asks him to pass along her warmest wishes to Perrin and Mat. I figure this is just a sign of Berelain's looking to attach herself if not in marriage, then at least sexually, to a man (or men) of importance. Not just for the connections that would bring her, but also for the sex. Powerful men really do seem to turn her on. Aviendha passes along some tidbits she has been told about the Wise Ones' dreams. Rand on a boat with three women they can't see the faces of. Elayne, Aviendha, and Min? And there is a scale on the boat, tilting back and forth. Not a clue what the scale means. Rand with a man he doesn't see holding a dagger to his throat. Probably this is whoever the traitor among Rand's inner circle is, that Rand trusts but will wind up betraying him. Rand thinks it means a Gray Man, but I'm going with the traitor angle. (Taim? Or someone else? The jury is still out on this one.) Rand cutting the wetlands in two with a sword. Maybe having to do with his path of conquest, both what's happened already and where he will conquer in the future. Rain coming from a bowl. Obviously, the bowl Nyn and Elayne want to find in Ebou Dar. If the wrong hands find the bowl, the world is doomed. So Nyn and Elayne have to get to it before the Black Ajah or other assorted Darkfriends, or Padan Fain, or the Legion of Doom can grab it. The key to finding the bowl is to find the one who is no longer. No longer? As in dead? Well, there's lots of dead people, so this isn't very specific. Aviendha thinks about the toh she has to Rand, and the toh she has to Elayne. It isn't specified why has has toh to Elayne, but I'd guess that she means watching over Rand and trying to convince him that Elayne is meant for him, only to sleep with him herself. And the toh to each of them conflicts with the other, meaning she can't meet one without making the other debt even worse. Sooner or later, she will figure something out... won't she?


Chapter 20 (From the Stedding): Ogier! This is an unexpected surprise, both for Rand and for me. The Elders have decided that Loial has been away for too long. Ogier who stay away from steddings too long have this tendency to die, and Loial has been out for five years now. So two high-ranked Ogier have come to retrieve him, bringing with them a young female to whom Loial has been betrothed. Without his consent, and possibly even without his knowledge, going by the negative feelings he has shown about getting married and settling down. Rand needs help finding all the waygates because Trollocs and Myrdraal are using them. He's already tried asking Ogier, but now we have Ogier who need his help. He offers to take them to the Two Rivers in exchange for help with blocking off the Ways. Maps get delivered. Lots and lots of maps. Pretty much most of the chapter is a geography lesson on what steddings are where, which ones have been abandoned, and what extinct nations used to be where. Loial isn't going to be happy.


Chapter 21 (To Shadar Logoth): Rand has to argue with Sulin about how much of an escort he has to take with him. Because the Aiel have pretty much appointed themselves as his Secret Service. Finally they work out twenty Maidens and twenty Aiel men. Sulin uses handtalk to gai'shain, which apparently gives her a huge toh debt to pay. She agrees to deal with it after they get back. Shadar Logoth is just as creepy as the first time we saw it. Rand weaves a saidin booby trap around the Waygate there that will kill shadowspawn but not humans. Rand wonders if it is possible to cleanse the Ways of Mashin Shin. That sounds almost as ambitious as healing the taint off saidin. Shadar Logoth's creeping evil somehow seems to amplify the taint or something. Which just means he should get out of there ASAP. But one of the Maidens disappears, and they need a half a day to look, without any success. Rand is really lucky he only lost one. Finally, he gives up and opens a gate to the Two Rivers, drops off the Ogier, and takes everyone else back to Caemlyn. Yeah, Loial isn't going to be happy regardless of whether Rand is saving his life.

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