The Great Hunt: Chapter 36
Author: Ismene Gillandred
Chapter Icon: A large leaf with two smaller leaves next to it
Point of View: Rand
Setting: Stedding Tsofu
The group try to use the Waygate outside Stedding Tsofu but find Machin Sin again. Alar tells them of a Portal Stone nearby.
The chapter starts with Rand, Perrin, Mat and the party of Shienaran soldiers trying to convince the Ogier Elders to allow them passage through the Waygate. They are determined to reach Toman Head quickly, in order to put a stop to Padan Fain and his evil schemes.
Juin leads Rand and company to meet the Elders. After quite a bit of debate, Loial nervously decides to sit out the meeting. It is clear that Loial is afraid of what sort of judgement the Elders will pass on him for running away from his home in Stedding Shangtai, and he is also quite nervous about the possibility of being ordered to marry Erith (or some other Ogier woman) and being forced to stay in the stedding, instead of continuing his adventures. Rand and the others see that Verin is already present in the massive Ogier hall. Rand realizes that the size of the hall, being built on the larger scale of the Ogier, would dwarf the size of many large (human) palaces.
Rand, Mat and Perrin are quickly introduced to Alar, the Eldest of the Elders who warns them that traveling the Ways is dangerous. She introduces them to Trayal, an Ogier who became brain damaged while traveling the Ways. Two Ogier women lead Trayal in to the room; he would barely be able to walk without their assistance. He is drooling and unable to speak. His eyes appear blank and his expression seems slack. Mysteriously, Verin seems able to Delve him, and announces that he is "empty," devoid of a soul.
Rand, Perrin and Mat are determined to go through the Ways anyway, and Alar makes Rand promise that he will return Loial safely to Stedding Shangtai. The boys catch up with Loial who is carrying a flower that Erith has given him. They all joke around about which of them is more popular with girls.
Pretty soon, the boys meet up with Juin, Ingtar, Uno and the other soldiers and realize that they've come to the Waygate already. Rand is a little creeped out when he realizes he can sense saidin again, and he very much wants to keep his ability to channel a secret. Verin opens the gate, but Rand sees that Machin Shin is directly behind it and warns her to close it. Verin puzzles over this, and Rand worries that Machin Shin is following him somehow. Ingtar says he wants to return to Cairhien.
At this point, Hurin suggests using a Portal Stone to get to Toman Head in order to catch up with Padan Fain, who is now in possession of both Mat's cursed ruby dagger and the Horn of Valere. Rand volunteers to try and find the Stone, even though he dreads the idea of channeling again. Verin leads everyone to believe that it is she who will be able to activate the Portal Stone. Everyone believes her misdirection easily enough, as they have no reason to believe that anyone but an Aes Sedai would be using a Portal Stone. In fact, Verin intends for Rand to use the Portal Stone. Verin commands Alar to take them to it.
None of the boys back down from the Ogier Elders.
- First Mention
- First Appearence
Bramble Briar, burning leaf itch oak