Chapter 1 The Eye of The World Chapter 3


Dark one


Rand and Mat unload the first barrels and enter the common room of the inn, to find not only Tam and Bran al'Vere, but Cenn Buie and the rest of the Village Council. Haral Luhhan frowns at Mat. Mistress al'Vere brings out some food, and says the boys can get something to eat in the kitchen when they're done. In the cellar, Mat says that he played a prank on some boys using one of Master Luhhan's dogs, and might have gotten flour all over their house.

When they return through the common room, Tam is speaking quietly and intently to the Council. They unload the rest of the barrels and are just getting some food when Ewin Finngar comes and says there are strangers in the village--not men in black, but a women in blue and a man in a cloak that shifts colours. Mat says that they were the ones he'd started to tell Rand about earlier--they'd arrived the evening before and taken rooms at the inn. Mat says their names are Moiraine and Lan. Ewin says that Nynaeve doesn't like Moiraine, because she called her "child". Moiraine has been asking questions about how old people are, and how long they've lived where they have.

Mat mentions the gleeman, too, but Ewin is skeptical. They go back through the common room, where the Village Council is still huddled together talking quietly, and outside. Mat asks Rand to back up his story, but he suddenly get the feeling he's being watched. He looks around, but only sees a raven sitting on the inn roof. Mat and Rand, both angry at the bird staring at them, throw their rocks, but the raven dodges, to their surprise.

A woman's voice from behind them describes the raven as a "vile bird", and it flies away in surprise. The boys turn to see a woman who can only be Moiraine. She looks like nobody Rand has ever seen, and he can't pin down her age. He notices the Great Serpent Ring on her hand. They greet her as "Lady Moiraine", but she tells them to just call her Moiraine.

She says she may have some small tasks to be done while she is in Emond's Field, and gives Mat, Rand and Ewin each a coin. She says that later they must tell her all about them. Rand asks why she came to Emond's Field, and she says she is a collector of old stories. They wonder aloud what stories there might be in the Two Rivers, but she says that men wear different faces as the Wheel of Time turns, and nobody can see the whole Pattern. The boys are tongue-tied; she says they will talk later, and walks away.

As she does, for the first time they notice the tall man in the colour-shifting cloak who was standing nearby and now moves to follow her. Ewin says that that's Lan, and that he's probably a Warder. Mat scoffs, saying that Warders have jeweled armour and fight Trollocs in the Blight. They look at their coins and realize they are silver, with a women and a flame on them. They are worth more than the boys have ever had before, but they resolve not to spend them. They hear shouting and see the peddler's wagon, at last, coming towards the Wagon Bridge.

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