Written By: Paul Clarkson & Michael Clarkson
Directed By: Wayne Yip
Original Air Date: November 19. 2021 on Amazon Prime Video
Darkness shrouds everything. A limp body scrapes across the rough terrain. Nynaeve regains consciousness as the trolloc clutching her braid drags her through the forest. Up ahead, another trolloc stumbles towards a large rock. The hideous beast dragging Nynaeve drops her roughly and moves towards the other trolloc. At the first sniff of injury the larger trolloc disembowels his kin, feasting on its still warm flesh. Nynaeve takes advantage of the beast’s bloodlust and makes a break for freedom. She can hear her monstrous pursuer hot on her trail and ducks into the cave, easing herself down into the ceremonial pool where she had previously spoken with Moiraine Sedai. She submerges herself into the sacred waters, which provide her refuge. This gives her the opportunity to steal the trolloc’s own weapon and gut him where he stands. Nynaeve emerges from the pool that’s slowly filling with blood. The opening credits roll.
The blade Nynaeve stole from the trolloc when she ended its life is still pressed tight to Lan’s throat. She demands to know what happened to her friends. Lan admits that it is him that left Rand, Perrin, Mat, and Egwene behind, not Moiraine. Lan then asks for help to heal Moiraine. Nynaeve will not commit her help, and so Lan challenges her and steps forward, pressing his neck to the blade. He confronts her further, saying that she will not really kill him. Nynaeve attempts to prove him wrong and ends up in a choke hold. She tries to bite the warder in an attempt to escape, and Lan knocks her unconscious.
Mat and Rand are higher up in the mountains, standing in a rocky outcrop shouting for Perrin and Egwene. Mat attempts to convince Rand that they need to head for home and can hopefully find their friends along the way. Rand refuses and resolves to go to the White Tower because he knows that is where Egwene will go. Reluctantly, Mat agrees to head east towards Tar Valon. Down on the plains Perrin and Egwene are being pursued by wolves, who seem to be relentlessly driving them forward. In an attempt to keep the wolves at bay, they try to light a fire. Perrin struggles with his knife, cutting himself while trying to get the fire going. Seeing his struggles, Egwene concentrates hard and attempts to channel the One Power. She manages to grasp just enough of it to spark a fire. Egwene is worried and wants to go home to search for Rand, but Perrin convinces her that Rand will head to the White Tower in search of her.
Nynaeve wakes up once again and finds herself tied to a tree. She demands that in exchange for assisting Moiraine, the Aes Sedai gives her the answers that she desires. Nynaeve convinces Lan that she is Moiraine’s only chance. She will die without her help. Lan does not seem like the type of man to yield, but he knows that Nynaeve is his only chance. After releasing her from the tree, Lan observes Nynaeve like a guard as she gathers the supplies that she needs to make a poultice for Moiraine. There is a tension between Nynaeve and Lan that speaks of an uneasy alliance. Nynaeve knows that a warder feels what his Aes Sedai feels and warns Lan that her poultice will hurt. Unable to heal like an Aes Sedai, Nynaeve tells him that her medicine will take time to work.
Perrin dreams. He is back at home and wakes to find that his wife Layla is not in their bed. He searches the house for her eventually finding her in the forge. Her body is slumped against the forge and the wound Perrin inflicted is oozing. Layla’s intestines are being eaten by a small grey and white wolf. Layla’s dead eyes fly open, glazed a yellowish green with death. A voice sounds from the darkness, “I know you.” Perrin comes face to face with the man whose eyes are fire. Egwene shakes him awake because they are once again pursued by the wolves. The wolves seem intent on driving them onward.
Mat is already growing weary of their traveling and expresses his desire to at least head back down the mountain instead of up. As if by wish fulfillment, he and Rand crest a ridge and well below, along the base of the quarry is a small mining town. As they walk into the town, they see a man dressed in shades of tan hanging dead in a cage. As Rand looks on in disgust, Mat’s keen eye spots a large gem hanging from the dead man’s belt loop. They wander until they find a tavern and duck inside. A young innkeeper named Dana (Izuka Hoyle) greets them over the rumble of a rather raucous crowd. Rand inquires after any other strangers in town, in hopes of hearing news of their companions. They do not find their friends but are treated to a song by a gleeman. He slowly strums his six-string guitar and sings a ballad about the Dragon.
‘The colors of his morning.
The darkness of his night.
The grays that gain no warning.
A sun that brought no light.
He saw his whole world breaking.
That tortured soul, I met.
In a prison of his making.
The man who can’t forget.
I can still hear the way that he cried for the ones he was missing.
I can still hear the way that he cried for ones he had lost.
He saw them in the rivers.
He felt them in the rain.
In dreams he heard them whisper.
The truth that is his pain.
He caused the whole world’s breaking.
That tortured soul, I met.
In a prison of his making.
The man who can’t forget.’
The once lively crowd is silenced as they are transfixed watching the gleeman (Alexandre Willaume). Dana snaps the crowd out of their trance by making a joke about crying or ordering another round. When he finishes his song, he steps down off the dais and joins Rand and Mat at their table asking after a donation. The gleeman seems bemused by the boys. When trying to pay for their meal, Mat discovers that a thief had pickpocketed his money. But the thief in turn had lost it to the gleeman, who had lifted the coin purse. Mat demands the money back, but the gleeman keep it. He calls it a life lesson.
Perrin and Egwene have been beaten down by the sun in the wind. There is no shelter on the plains, and they are still being herded by the wolves. They come across fresh wheel tracks, deep enough to be carrying a lot of people. The tracks are heading east, towards the White Tower. It is almost as if the wolves have led them there.
The boys beg Dana for work in exchange for room and board. Rand starts to cut firewood, but Mat’s mood has gone sour. He says that Perrin and Egwene are probably dead, and later that Egwene wouldn’t be searching for Rand. The tension is too strong and Mat walks away to find different work. He attempts to sweet-talk Dana, but only manages to talk his way into a serving job. He and Dana chat about life. Mat shares that he wants to go home while Dana expresses that she wants to be anywhere else. “Here we’re born in this dirt, spend our lives digging in it until one day they cover us up with a few shovels full of the same stuff.”
Moiraine lays on the ground dying. Nynaeve confesses that she’s never seen poison like this before and she is worried that Moiraine does not have long to live. Lan orders Nynaeve to watch over Moiraine while he leaves to find additional help.
Perrin and Egwene are driven into the mist. Perrin tries to go ahead alone, driven by the desire to protect Egwene since he could not protect his wife, Layla. As the pair trudge deeper into the mist, Perrin hears the howling of the wolves. They both turn, knives at the ready, to find a group of people approaching. “Do you know the song?” the strangers ask. Perrin and Egwene stand in stunned silence until one of the newcomer’s approaches. This young man, Aram (Daryl McCormack) repeats a phrase that sounds like ceremony and prompts them to do the same. “Your welcome warms our spirit as your fires warm our flesh, but we do not know the song.”
Egwene gathers herself enough to repeat the phrase, but Perrin mutters about not knowing the song. As poorly executed as it was, it seems to satisfy the stranger’s requirements. Introductions and formalities complete, the leaders step forward and introduce themselves as Ila (Maria Doyle Kennedy) and her husband Raen (Narinder Samra). The newcomers gather up Perrin and Egwene and journey back to their encampment. It is a camp filled with wagons. Each wagon painted in an array of bright colors and patterns. Egwene and Perrin have not heard of the Tuatha’an, The Traveling People, The Tinkers, who have a reputation of stealing children and gold. The Tinkers attest that their reputation is unearned and that their fires are open to all. They allow Perrin and Egwene to warm themselves by the fire and share in their meal.
Dana comes back out to find Rand still chopping wood. She shows Rand to a storage room where she says she’ll allow him and Mat to sleep for the night. She offers Rand and Mat more privacy in case they want to be intimate. Rand is not offended but makes it clear that he and Mat are not a couple. Dana leaves two drinks for Rand and Mat, but Rand offers his to Dana and asks her to stay.
Lan rides through the woods and up to the edge of a rocky cliff. Below him in the distance is a camp of small red tents. Nynaeve is tending to Moiraine’s wound when she begins to wake. Lan returns asking if Moiraine can ride. Nynaeve can only guarantee a few more hours of Moiraine’s life.
Mat sneaks out into the night, intent on stealing the caged dead man’s gem. His plan is foiled when the gleeman steps out into the night, throwing knife in hand. He calls Mat out on being from the Two Rivers, saying, “It is written all over you. Your speech, your dress, your asinine attitude, stubborn as a mule.” The gleeman makes it clear his intent is to bury the Aiel. Mat helps to cut the dead man down, inquiring how the gleeman came to be here. The gleeman explains that red hair is uncommon outside the Aiel waste and while they are known to be great fighters they only kill when their faces are veiled. He says that the villagers murdered him because they were cowards. The gleeman asks Mat once again why he was out in the night. Mat confesses to needing money to get home. The gleeman still wants to bury the Aiel man but looks away so that Mat can steal the gem. Mat not only finds the gem, but also a small carving of a wolf. As Mat steals the Aiel’s last worldly possessions, he apologizes, saying he has sisters at home who need him.
Back in their room Rand and Dana get cozy, getting to know each other. Dana confesses to Rand that she dreams of seeing the world. They discuss how the Wheel of Time affects their lives. Dana leans in for a kiss and Rand pulls away while she apologies. Dana walks to the door and makes sure that it is locked. As she turns back to him, she mutters “Was it the hair? I shouldn’t have braided it. It makes me look too much like her, doesn’t it?.” Rand is perplexed by what she means, but Dana goes on explaining that it makes her look too much like Egwene. Dana orders Rand toward the bed and when he lunges for his sword, she is closer and knocks it away and steals his sword. Her plan quickly unfolds. She is waiting for Mat to return because she “needs him” as well. Dana expresses that she likes Rand, which makes it harder.
Out in the night Mat and the gleeman bury the Aiel Man, Thom Merrilin (Alexandre Willaume) the gleeman intoning, “May you always find water and shade.” He and Mat come to an understanding and after it is requested, Thom returns Mat’s coin purse.
Unwilling to be trapped, Rand throws his body at the thick wooden door, attempting to break it down. Dana tells him the room is soundproof and that three men Rand’s size could not break through the door. Gathering himself Rand makes a run at the door several more times. At his last run the door pulls from the frame and bursts outward into the night. Mat rounds the corner just in time to have Rand pull him along. Waving Rand’s heron marked sword, Dana chases them through the town before finally cornering them. She explains that she sees the five of them in her dreams, but only one of them can be the Dragon. Dana intends to be the next Ishamael, the man who brought the Dragon to the Dark One. It is her desire to live something more than a simple life as the proprietor of a tavern. She dreams that she will be remembered throughout history. Dana says that the Dragon can break the Wheel. She informs the boys that she has called a Fade to assist in their capture, since “no one can outrun a Fade.”
Suddenly a knife blooms in her throat and she falls over dead. Thom appears, explaining that Dana was a Darkfriend. He gathers the boys, telling them that he is heading east, and they best go with him.
Lan, riding with Moiraine in the saddle in front of him, and Nynaeve head towards the Aes Sedai camp Lan found. They stop in the road as they see two Aes Sedai on the cliff’s flanking their path. Lan awakens Moiraine just as they are confronted in the road by Liandrin Sedai (Kate Fleetwood). Behind her more riders come into view, along with a horse drawn cart topped with a large iron cage. Liandrin brings forth the man she had captured. He stands bound in a cage, flanked by Aes Sedai. Liandrin proclaims that he is a man who has named himself Dragon, and she is his captor.