AMoL Chapter 20

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Bad news everyone, in this chapter of the book. Previous chapters are listed here. This will have spoilers, as ever, don't read this if you haven't already read all of WoT.
What Happens
Egwene attacks and several other Aes Sedai attack a hilltop, claiming it from the Trollocs. This forces them down into the valley where the heavy cavalry attack them. The Trollocs advance on their hilltop so they retreat. Gawyn observes that the Myrddraal are forcing the Trollocs quite hard to maintain their current position. But that is strange, the position isn't worth that much to them. Egwene recognises something is wrong, and Gawyn runs to warn the command tent. But it's to late. A gateway as wide as the camp opens, and an army stands on the other side, with hundreds of women. Lelaine recognizes them as the Sharans. The Sharans attack the camp, and target anyone who channels. They destroy the command tent when Bryne uses a gateway to send messages to withdraw the army, it's likely that Bryne, Siun and Yukiri died. Gawyn and Egwene hide under his warders cloak.

Aciendha, Rhuarc Amys and Ituralde scout Thakan'dar, and form up some battle plans. Aviendha goes back to talk with Rand. Rand tells he he intends to try and slay the Dark One. She encourages Rand to consider taking him gai'shain rather than killing him, because the way of ji'e'toh suggests this would be a greater victory. Rand appoints Aviendha as leading the channelers while he enters the Bore, to protect his back, and keep them from entering the cavern. He also says how he's sending Min to Egwene, and that he's taking Callandor with him when he attacks. Nynaeve urges him not to, that it's a trap, that anyone can seize control of him while he uses it and use his power as they wish. Rand intends to spring that trap, and announces they attack tomorrow.

Commentary
i guess this is hello to Demandred. So I got this wrong. Now that I've read this scene, I think I recall some Forsaken conversation in a previous book about how easy it was to subvert the Shara. But it wasn't Demandred who was talking, I think it was Moghidin or Gaendral.

This is looking terrible. Egwene's army in Kandor is in total disarray, and likely to be almost completely overwhelemed. Elayne is already facing significant problems near Caemlyn. Lan's army has always been on the back foot. They've lost the seals. We still haven't seen the red-veiled Aiel, nor has Padan Fain made an appearance. So it can still get a lot worse.

With the way the Sharans are responding so quickly to any channeling, I rather think that the next time someone tries to gateway in they will meet a very nasty surprise. So that doesn't look good for Min, or any messengers, or healers. But hopefully that means word will get back to the others soon that there is a big problem there.

I'm predicting that the Seanchan army will be deployed against the Sharans. Because there really isn't another choice, there are no other armies that are in reserve, who also have sufficient channelling resources to confront this threat. And with the extreme lack of communication with the Sharans throughout the rest of the book it doesn't look like it will be possible to talk them down, and explain that they are fighting on the wrong side. That probably wouldn't be possible anyway, as I suspect the Forsaken have completely warped their religious culture, effectively making them into an aggressive alien force with which it is not possible to communicate.

2 Comments

Ha! You didn't see that coming. So now you see that they're all completely stuffed with a capital F you might as well stop reading now, before it gets to hard for you.

Well maybe I would have. But if you look at the timestamps, you're comment was posted after I'd put up my post on chapters 28 and 29. So I guess I've lost the opportunity to take your advice and abandon this series of 15 books with only 519 pages to go. Woe is me.

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