The Eye of the World: Chapter 4
Author: Dinn da Noor
Chapter Icon: A Harp
Point of View: Rand
Location: Emond's Field
Thom demonstrates some skills and Tam and Rand return home.
The white-haired, lean man is wearing a cloak full of patches in hundred of colors, but what Rand notices most about him is that he has blue eyes, as almost all Emond's Fielders have brown.
He immediately starts talking to them about the bad welcome he's gotten and how "some girl-child" chased him out of the common room. When he finds out that the Wisdom and the Village Council are discussing the news about the war in Ghealdan, he calls it old news, even for Baerlon.
Thom Merrilin then asks Egwene if she would be his assistant at his performance, something she accepts. The gleeman smirks when Perrin and Mat tell him that they've been to Watch Hill, Deven Ride, the Mire and the Mountains of Mist, but apologizes as his tongue "has always gotten him in bad trouble".
When he sees that a small crowd has gathered around them, he starts juggling balls and talks about the stories he will tell them.
He suddenly stops talking and juggling when Moiraine shows up and asks her who she is and what she's doing here and when she has answered and left with Lan, he's obviously not pleased. As the Village Council exits the inn, he goes to get some strong brandy, to the disappointment of the spectators.
Bran al'Vere argues with both Nynaeve and Cenn Buie before the Village Council spreads and moves off in different directions. Rand and his friends go to talk with Tam, who tells them that there shouldn't be anything to worry about, but that they'll organize a watch to patrol around in Deven Ride, Watch Hill and Taren Ferry.
He then tells Rand that they should get going and meet in the stables in five minutes.
Rand, Mat and Perrin decide to join the watch and tell the Mayor about the rider. However, they think that they should try to find more people who have seen him, and decide that Mat and Perrin should ask more people whether they've spotted the rider that evening.
Rand then sets off to the stables so Tam won't have to worry about him.
They walk in silence for a while before Rand asks why the Council needed to question the peddler. Tam tells him that if they had taken the decision straight away, people could get worried about Aes Sedai and alike, and tomorrow morning "half the village would have been sure the whole war was to descend on us". They then discuss who and what the rider is, and Tam says that two of the Village Council member's sons had seen him too, something that made Rand feel more secure and as "there was nothing the black-cloaked horseman could do that the people of Emond's Field could not handle together".
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