Knife of Dreams: Chapter 24
Chapter Icon: Flame of Tar Valon
Point of View: Egwene
Setting: The White Tower
Characters: Egwene, Silviana, Alviarin, Nicola, Alvistere, Laras, Katerine Alruddin, Idrelle Menford, Jezrail, Pevara Tazanovni, Doesine Alwain, Leane, Felaana Bevaine, Dalevien, Melare, Desala, Bennae Nalsad, Lirene Doirellin, Pritalle Nerbaijan, Serancha Colvine, Adelorna Bastine, Areina, Marah, Namene, Coride, Pedra, Mair, Asseil, Mattin Stepaneos, Cariandre, Nesita, Barasine, Melavaire Someinellin, Beonin, Meidani, Jennet, Nagora, Norine, Miyasi, Ashelin
Egwene bears her punishments bravely and uses her time in the Tower to try to persuade various sisters Elaida must be disposed of.
Egwene decides that embracing pain as the Aiel do will be the best way to deal with her lot in the Tower. She reports to Silviana her first morning of capture; she cries as she is spanked with a slipper but she refuses to snivel and writhe. Silviana thinks she has done a good job and doubts she will see Egwene again soon. She tells Egwene that she was right - it is Leane in the cells - and she will give instructions that Egwene may visit Leane when she wishes. Egwene doesn't curtsey when she is dismissed, so Silviana orders her back at noon. Egwene announces that the Amyrlin Seat curtsies to no one, to which Silviana replies that she will also see Egwene at supper.
Egwene is surprised that Alviarin is waiting outside Silviana's office, even more so when she hears Alviarin being punished a few moments later. She returns to her room to tidy herself before going to breakfast in the novice dining hall. Nicola points her out to the other novices as she enters. Egwene makes her way to the food, but is tripped by Alvistere. She lectures Alvistere on her behavior; Alvistere questions what right she has to lecture her. Egwene shocks all of them by announcing she is the Amyrlin Seat, even if she is a prisoner. Egwene notices that a lot of food is going out on trays to Aes Sedai in their rooms; she takes this as confirmation that the Tower is beginning to crumble from within. She eats breakfast calmly, giving no sign that she hurts from her earlier punishment. As soon as she is done, Katerine Alruddin forces her to drink enough forkroot tea that she cannot channel much, but not so much that she will pass out.
Egwene goes to her first class, taught by Idrelle Menford, who was jealous of Egwene's fast rise to Accepted when Egwene had been in the Tower. She orders Egwene to make a ball of Fire. Egwene responds by making seven different colored balls dancing inside seven rings of Fire, even as Idrelle shouts at her to stop and switches her with Air. Katerine bursts in demanding to know what is going on; Idrelle tells her and Katerine tells Egwene to stop channeling. Egwene stops after a little while longer. Katerine sends Egwene to Silviana's office for punishment; when Egwene walks instead of running, she switches her bottom with Air. Jezrail, another Red, stops her, reminding her that she can't punish the girl. Egwene has two more classes and two more visits to Silviana's study, and Silviana announces that Egwene will need to be Healed every morning. Egwene's classes are also changed to solo sessions with Aes Sedai.
Egwene visits Leane in her cell; Felaana and Dalevien are watching Leane but tell Egwene that she can speak to her friend. Leane asks Egwene when they will escape; Egwene tells her they won't because she believes she can make the Tower sisters turn on Elaida. Leane asks Egwene if she is certain and when Egwene says that she is, Leane gives in.
Egwene has a lesson with Bennae Nalsad, a Brown sister. Bennae asks Egwene to demonstrate various weaves and tries to get her to show her the weave for Traveling - which Egwene will not show her. Bennae says that as Egwene seems well versed in the Power, she needs to be caught up on history and asks her to name the mistakes Shein Chunla made that caused the Third War of Garen's Wall, the causes of the Great Winter War and the causes of the Weikin Rebellion. Egwene admits that she doesn't know about the last two, but she states that Shein Chunla didn't make any mistakes and reveals to Bennae secret history of the Tower and the existence of the thirteenth Depository. She tells Bennae that at six different times in the Tower's history, the Hall and Aes Sedai have deposed an incompetent or seriously divisive Amyrlin. This is her strategy with all the Aes Sedai she takes lessons from, to plant the idea of rebellion against Elaida. Sometimes it works, as with Lirene Doreillin, and sometimes it doesn't, as with Pritalle Nerbaijan, Serancha Colvine and Adelorna Bastine. Adelorna tries to break her by paddling her with a hairbrush; when that fails she tells Egwene, a little respectfully, that she wished Cadsuane was in the Tower because Cadsuane would know how to handle her.
Egwene is learning how to embrace pain; she manages to smile after Silviana has punished her. Attitudes begin to change among the novices. Nicola has been spreading tales of her, making her seem greater than she is. Her refusal to bend gains the novices respect. Novices begin approaching her for advice and for comfort as the Dark One's touch reaches the Tower, making ghosts appear and corridors change. She comforts a girl named Coride who saw a ghost and who is frightened when Pedra cannot find their classroom. She manages to dry the girl's tears.
Egwene is also kept busy doing chores; she notices that Laras never uses her spoon on her. Chores give her a chance to visit the Accepted's quarters. Several of them, including Mair and Asseil, try to order her around; she refuses to obey them, which gets her trips to Silviana. When trips to Silviana do not make her give in and obey the Accepted, they gradually cease trying to order her around. Attending Aes Sedai gives her further insight into the divisions among the Ajahs and other disasters, such as the sisters sent to take down the Black Tower. She takes opportunities to make comments about how poorly Elaida is managing the city and about the past uprisings of Sitters and Aes Sedai against incompetent or divisive Amyrlins.
Alviarin approaches her one day when she is raking in the Water Garden. Alviarin hints that Egwene must want to escape. Egwene says that she is content with her situation, which Alviarin doesn't believe. She continues to seek Egwene out every couple of days to hint at escaping.
One day she is cleaning hallways and is noticed by Mattin Stepaneos, King of Illian. He recognizes her as coming from the same village as Rand and demands to speak with her. He is being escorted by Cariandre, a Red. He watches as Nesita and Barasine bring Egwene her forkroot tea, which she drinks. Egwene tells him the sisters think the tea will improve her mood. She says he looks well for being kidnapped by Elaida. Mattin says Elaida saved him from murder by Rand; Mattin says he murdered Morgase and Colavaere and a number of Tairen High Lords. Egwene informs him that Colavaere hanged herself and Morgase was murdered by Rahvin. Egwene informs him that he is being fed lies by the Red Ajah and asks him why he has only spoken to Reds. Cariandre tells Egwene to be quiet and sends her to Silviana for punishment.
Egwene sees Beonin with Melavaire Someinellin and realizes that Beonin must have been the one to betray her. She accuses Beonin of being Black Ajah because she broke her oath. Beonin asks Melavaire to leave them alone. Beonin tells Egwene that she kept her oath until Egwene was captured and made a novice; as she is no longer the Amyrlin Seat, Beonin has convinced herself her oath no longer holds. She tries to say that she betrayed no one but cannot say it. This proves she is still bound by the Three Oaths and isn't Black Ajah. Egwene figures out that Beonin must have betrayed the ferrets. Beonin says she's warned the two Grays but cannot warn the ones of the other Ajahs because of the hostility between Ajahs. Egwene tells her to warn them anyway and to think of it as a penance. Egwene informs her that she is not released from her oath and tells Beonin that she will expect to see her every day in case she has instructions for her.
Later that day, Egwene goes to inform Leane, who is being guarded by Nagora, Norine and Miyasi, that Beonin was the traitor. Leane says that Beonin is ambitious. Norine tells Egwene she needs to go to bed as she is exhausted. Egwene asks Leane in not so many words whether she is still being asked to reveal the weave for Traveling; Leane replies that she is and says she can see how that means that Beonin hasn't betrayed them.
The next morning, Doesine Heals Egwene before her morning punishment with Silviana. She seems impressed that Egwene hasn't surrendered yet but believes that Silviana will break her. That morning after her punishment, Egwene asks Silviana how Elaida can reduce an Aes Sedai to Accepted as there is no provision for it in Tower law. Silviana says there's no prohibition either so it's a loophole; the real problem, however, was that Shemerin accepted Elaida's command. If she'd ignored it, Elaida wouldn't have gotten away with it. Silviana, somewhat resignedly, says she'll put Egwene down for a midday punishment as she knows Egwene won't be curtseying on her way out.
Egwene goes to breakfast and is surprised when all of the novices stand on her entrance. Ashelin fetches her breakfast for her and curtsies to her. The novices have provided her a cushion to sit on. The novices only sit after she has. She is pleasantly surprised to find that the novices have put honey in her tea - a treat they only get on special occasions. She thinks that Doesine's questions, Silviana's resignation and now the honey from the novices means she is winning the war.