The Dragon Reborn: Chapter 15

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Author: Val a'Shain

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The Gray Man

Chapter Icon: A black head on a white background facing a white head on a black background

Point of View: Egwene

Setting: The White Tower

Characters: Egwene, Nynaeve, a Gray Man, Sheriam


A gray man shoots a crossbow at Egwene and Nynaeve. Nynaeve captures him with air, but someone else kills him.


Egwene and Nynaeve hurry to the novice quarters after their talk with the Amyrlin. They discuss ways to defend themselves in case they run into a Black sister and wonder how they can do so without breaking the Three Oaths. When they arrive at Elayne's room they notice she hasn't returned from her visit with the Mistress of Novices yet. At that moment, a crossbow bolt streaks past Egwene, nicking her ear. Nynaeve drags her down to the floor.

Both embrace saidar and look around for the assassin. They can't see anyone at first but after a moment Nynaeve spots a man and ties him up with Air. A trick she learned from the Amyrlin. When they reach the man they find he has been killed with a dagger. The crossbow is missing.

At that moment Sheriam finds them and wants to know what happened. Nynaeve tells the Mistress of Novices they found the man like this. Sheriam checks if he is dead and recoils when she realizes it is a Gray Man. Egwene and Nynaeve haven't been taught about Gray Men yet so Sheriam quickly explains. Gray Men give their soul to the Shadow to become the Dark One's assassins. They are almost impossible to spot before it's too late.

Sheriam thinks it's better Nynaeve and Egwene don't become involved in this considering the trouble they are already in. She sends them to their rooms. Egwene suddenly remembers the crossbow bolt and makes an excuse to go get it. When she gets there the bolt is already gone though. There is only one possibility: another Gray Man took it. When Egwene and Nynaeve leave the site of the murder Nynaeve notes Sheriam never wondered who stabbed the Gray Man.


Character Development

  • She almost reveals the reason she is in the Tower

This is still so she can get revenge on Moiraine

  • She is able to repeat the trick of holding someone in air, despite knowing nothing of channeling when it was done. Presumably at the time, she couldn't even see the flows used.
  • She says she thinks she sees a way of making something useful of the trick Sheriam used to hide the body - what?
  • She seizes the source without difficulty
  • Despite all her time as damane, she is too flustered to hold saidar


Why is a Gray Man used?

It seems Egwene survived by just pure chance.

Who killed the Gray man and took the crossbow?
Has the time that Nynaeve and Elayne had to be removed passed? Do the remaining Black Ajah have no interest in them?

Someone did seem to want to kill them


The girls seem to be unaware that they can use the Power against darkfriends and still be following the Oaths.


This section contains Notes on this Chapter which may contain spoilers. Please expand to view.


Who killed the Gray man and took the crossbow?

Later revealed as Slayer, though the motivation is not explained.

Has the time that Nynaeve and Elayne had to be removed passed? Do the remaining Black Ajah have no interest in them?

Someone did seem to want to kill them, but this seems to be the only attempt, other than when they are later captured after meeting the Aiel


Siuan says she should be at least able to trust Sheriam and Leane. She is right about Leane, but Sheriam is Black Ajah and not to be trusted.

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