Lord of Chaos: Chapter 42

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Author: Asandra al'Terra

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The Black Tower

Chapter Icon: A Dragon

Point of View: Rand

Location: The Royal Palace

Characters: Rand, Min, Taim


Rand visits the Black Tower and speaks before the students introducing the ranking system and awarding Taim with the Silver sword and the Golden dragon.


Rand and Min stand in his rooms, looking at each other. To break the silence, Rand asks whether Min would like to go to the farm - the school for male channelers - with him. She pales, and excuses herself, giving him a quick kiss.

He sighs when she leaves, and gathers two pouches from a chest in his bedchamber, and his sword. After thinking of Alanna and the rest of the Aes Sedai in the city - eleven, including Alanna and Verin - he weaves a gateway to the farm, letting go of saidin as soon as he steps through. Lews Therin may try and seize the Power from him again when they see Taim.

As Rand steps into the clearing of the farm from the woods he had Traveled to, he notes it has changed until it is almost unrecognisable. The place itself is well repaired, and there are many students of all ages, training and doing chores; women and children also sit, work, and play off to the side. Most of those training and doing chores wear long black coats with high collars.

One of these men approaches Rand and arrogantly asks who he is; when he receives an answer, he begins to say something even more arrogant - a flow of Air knocks him out. Taim appears, and tells two nearby students to drag the unconscious one away and wake him, without Healing. As they do so, Taim turns back to Rand, and they begin to speak. Taim informs Rand that Healing is the first thing the students are taught. Rand also learns that three students have been burned out, and one has died so far.

The farm had been given the name the Black Tower by the students and, though hesitant at first, Rand decides to let the name stand. On that note, he tells Taim to gather the students, so he can address them.

Rand's announcement has to do with rank; he establishes that the first rank, upon entering the Black Tower, will be soldier; then Dedicated - who will wear a silver sword pin on their collar to show rank - and finally, Asha'man (meaning 'Guardian'), whose rank will be shown by a gold dragon pin, worn on the other side of the collar. Rand gives Taim - who looks incredibly expressionless - the two pins; then, when the students are dismissed, begins to speak with Taim in the farmhouse. Taim believes that their numbers will be equal with that of the White Tower within a year. After this, Lews Therin tries to reach for the Source again to kill Taim, but Rand stops him, muttering that he is dead. Taim says, in turn, that Rand must hold on to sanity a while longer. After speaking of the Red Aes Sedai appearing around the countryside, looking for the Black Tower, and the eleven Aes Sedai in the city, Rand assures Taim that he will make them dance to his flute.


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