Crossroads of Twilight: Chapter 14
Chapter Icon: Flame of Tar Valon
Point of View: Elayne
Setting: Royal Palace in Caemlyn
Elayne deals with spies and other matters, finds out she will have twins and that one of the Sea Folk apprentices is missing and probably left with Merilille.
Warded against eavesdroppers, Reene Harfor informs Elayne that Milam Harnder, the Second Librarian, is a spy for the Brown Ajah. Elayne uses the spies to make her enemies believe what she wants. Currently, there are no spies for the Black Tower, but Mistress Harfor is sure there will be some with time. Halwin Norry reports there have been arsons on warehouses storing food the day before. He also says that "Marne, Arawn and Sarand have all recently taken very large loans against the revenues of their estates," which are being used to pay for their mercenaries and bribe some of Elayne's into turning coat, as Dyelin is sure. Elayne orders the mercenary companies to be watched and Birgitte intends to switch them to guarding another gate frequently.
Once Mistress Harfor and Master Norry leave, Aviendha says someone tried to listen in with the Power. Birgitte informs Elayne that the Borderlanders are moving, but it may take them well over a month getting close to Caemlyn. Elayne hopes they will come soon enough to drive the six still uncommitted High Seats to her. Julanya Fote and Sabeine Ocalin, two Kinswomen sent out as scouts, reported that rumor has Lord Luan at a dozen different places and not a whisper is to be heard of either Abelle or Ellorien. Arathelle, Pelivar and Aemlyn crossed the borders to Murandy, but without any Murandians. Dyelin thinks they could be heading to their estates, but Elayne hopes they move on to Caemlyn, so Dyelin can convince them the choice is between Arymilla and Elayne for the throne.
Tzigan, a Guardswoman, enters and announces Monaelle and Sumeko wish to see Elayne. The Wise One says she wants to check her condition and the Kinswoman is there to learn from her. She weaves threads akin to Delving, but way more complex, to find out if something is wrong with the mother or the child and learns that Elayne has twins. Sumeko immediately Caresses the Child too, as this is called, once the Wise One is done and Aviendha is to try it as well but as she embraces saidar, the beacon to the west stops abruptly and Sumeko is afraid to know whether something horrible or wonderful happened. Elayne assures her something wonderful happened. Caseille, another Guardswoman, enters with news that the remaining Sea Folk women are in a frenzy, because one of their apprentices has gone missing. Guardswoman Azeri told her she saw Merilille leave three hours ago with a woman cloaked and hooded and tattoos on her hands. Elayne wants Birgitte to order the gates to watch for Merilille and the Kinswomen to search every inn, in case the Aes Sedai is not already out of the City.