From Tar Valon Library
Author: Ilissa al'Nari
Noal Charin is an old man; bent, white-haired, scrawny. His hands, fingers and nose seem to have been broken several times (ACoS, Ch. 14), but he still has a firm, strong grip (WH, Ch. 16). Because of his hands he cannot wield a sword anymore; instead he uses a couple of long knives as his primary weapons, and he is good enough with them that most who attack him are lucky if they live to regret it (ACoS, Ch. 17), and he is in good enough physical condition that he manages to hold on to a kicking Tuon when he aids Mat in kidnapping her as well as managing to keep up when he, Mat and Egeanin walks back to Valan Luca's Circus despite carrying a heavy basket of fish (CoT, Ch. 2). According to himself he is widely traveled and a good cook (CoT, Ch. 1).
He is constantly sad or melancholic; at least that is the way it appears both from how he talks and his facial expression (CoT, Ch. 1). He is also quite ruthless and cynical; for instance he is ready to kill one of their own number (the former Panarch of Tarabon, Amathera, who after her captivity with the Seanchan is known as Thera) to avoid her revealing the truth about them if she is questioned by Seanchan (CoT, Ch. 28). Mat thinks he has lost everyone and everything he ever cared for and that he is desperate for human company since he has decided to follow him (CoT, Ch. 1), while Thom Merrilin says he has the talent of hearing whispers and knowing that they mean (WH, Ch. 28). He also has something he is struggling to remember; he knows it is important that he remembers it and lifts a hand to his temple whenever he is thinking of it (ACoS, Ch. 17). He is educated enough to speak the Old Tongue, though is a little rusty at it (ToM, Ch. 53).
- Noal has probably been a more than adept swordsman at some point. He has carried and used two long knives for the past thirty years (ACoS, Ch. 17). He claims to have been in Shibouya/Shara, and Thom Merrilin seems to think he might be telling the truth (WH, Ch. 28).
- Noal is at the Silver Circuit in Ebou Dar at the same time as Mat; stands close to a fox-faced young woman whom Mat recognizes as the same who tried to kill him and Rand in a stable close to Caemlyn. Mat sees both of them and pursues the woman to Jaichim Carridin's palace; Noal is the one telling Mat who the palace has been let to after Mat asks more or less to himself 'who lives here?' He then disappears, and Mat realizes he is the same person he saw at the Circuit (ACoS, Ch. 14). The two men are seen by Jaichim Carridin (ACoS, Ch. 15).
- He watches the house where Ispan and Falion live. He knows they are Aes Sedai and that they have not been around much since they arrived, and that Mili Skane/Lady Shiaine is Jaichim Carridin's killer (ACoS, Ch. 17).
- He watches Carridin's palace often; Vanin sees him there and Mat sends Thom Merrilin and Juilin Sandar out to learn what they can learn about him, but none of them are able to ferret out anything at all (ACoS, Ch. 28).
- He comes to Mat's aid when the gholam attacks him in an alley. Mat offers him to sleep in the Tarasin Palace, and Noal agrees. Mat does not recognize him from the Circuit and the palace, but thinks there is something familiar about him. He has heard of Shadar Logoth and knows it is a place few survive visiting (WH, Ch. 16).
- He meets Mat as he returns from seeing Queen Tylin of Altara off with the Seanchan nobles, and offers his services in whatever Mat is planning to achieve. Mat claims he is not planning anything, but Noal only smiles and says he sees great leadership material in Mat before he continues with giving Mat an update on the gholam's latest ventures. Offers his help again before he leaves. He keeps updating Mat on the gholam, sometimes in person, sometimes through Thom Merrilin (WH, Ch. 28).
- Noal surprises Mat by saving him again; this time from Tuon when she comes upon him as he prepares to flee from the Tarasin Palace, Ebou Dar and the Seanchan. He tells Mat he intends to leave the city as well and asks whether he intends to leave Tuon in a hay barn after Mat has surprised him and the surrounding Seanchan by saying Tuon is his wife (WH, Ch. 31).
- He comes with Mat and the others as they leave Ebou Dar with Valan Luca's show; the fifth day after their escape he approaches Mat to ask whether he intends to stay outdoors much longer; he longs for a fire or at least a blanket, but still he volunteers to come to the river to get bait. Despite his many alleged travels he admits to never have seen so many ships in one place that the Seanchan have in the harbors of Ebou Dar after the Corenne has come to the shores of the Westlands. He claims to have seen worse than damane and da'covale, and tries to comfort Egeanin when she talks about her own damane and how she fears she will never see her again (CoT, Ch. 1). When the three of them return to the show, some Seanchan soldiers are talking to Luca, and Noal suggests they take the horses and flee. Mat sends him off to watch Olver instead, but he goes off to do something else, unknown what (CoT, Ch. 2).
- He agrees to follow Juilin and his girlfriend Thera (the former Panarch of Tarabon, then known as Amathera) whenever they leave the show to get warning in case Thera reveals something to the Seanchan; he offers to kill her, but Mat says no. When Mat returns from town he finds Noal telling stories to Olver, and Noal remembers a tidbit of the Prophecies of the Dragon that he has been trying to recall (CoT, Ch. 28).
- Noal tells tales of the Ayyad and claims to be Jain Fairstrider's cousin. He doesn't think highly of Jain for abandoning his wife (KoD, Ch. 6)
- Noal says Jain always wanted to see it and thought it was on the Shadow Coast. Mat remembers seeing it with Bayle. Noal offers to be the third person (KoD, Ch. 10)
- Noal meets with Mat and Tom to discuss the gholam Mat tells him the gholam intends to kill him (ToM, Ch. 9).
- He again insists on being the third man into the Tower of Ghenjei, claiming it is something he needs to do. He brings iron, "to bind" (ToM, Ch. 22).
- Before entering the Tower, he says the words "courage to strengthen. fire to blind. music to dazzle. iron to bind"
- He briefly leaves and re-enters the Tower to see if the entrance they made will also work as an exit (ToM, Ch. 53).
- After entering he is disconcerted, at first thinking a good map would help, then when it becomes obvious it would not, trying to claim it is done with mirrors (ToM, Ch. 53).
Noal spies on Jaichim Carridin (ACoS, Ch. 14).
He saves Mat's life and becomes a helper of sorts to his cause (WH, Ch. 16).
"Aye. And Inquisitor of the Hand of the Light. Not a man to bother unless you must, and then I'd think three times." (Noal to Mat; A Crown of Swords, Chapter 14)
"You don't trust me, yet. That is understandable. Although, if I meant you any harm, all I had to do was stand back that night in the alley. You have the look in your eye. I've seen great men laying plans, and villains dark as the Pit of Doom, too. There is a look a man gets, laying dangerous plans he doesn't want known." (Noal to Mat; Winter's Heart, Chapter 28)
"Are you sure it wouldn't be better to just make sure she can't talk to anyone? Just a suggestion, lad. If you say not, then not." (Noal to Mat; Crossroads of Twilight, Chapter 28)
"Fortune rides like the sun on high
with the fox that makes the ravens fly.
Luck his soul, the lightning his eye,
He snatches the moons from out of the sky"
(Noal to Mat; Crossroads of Twilight, Chapter 28)