The Dragon Reborn: Chapter 21
Author: Cursor Wrathwind
Chapter Icon: Dream Ter'angreal
Point of View: Egwene
Setting: The White Tower
Verin gives Egwene a ter'angeral that grants access to tel'ara'rhiod.
As Egwene is scrubbing dishes and dumping ashes, Verin comes to the Kitchen asking for a meal and whispers a secret summons to Egwene. Egwene wanders the Brown corridors alone searching for Verin's study, noting the dusty feel of the air and the minimal decorations. She finds Verin's study cluttered with maps, books, strange instruments of glass and metal and skulls of various shapes and sizes, as well as a pet owl.
Egwene finds Verin studying what she claims is perhaps the only page to have survived the Breaking, trying to decipher what Rosel of Essam had meant two hundred years after the Breaking when she said that it held secrets the world was not ready to face. The page is a High Chant the reads on about Ba'alzamon and how it is a name hidden within a name. The chant calls Ba'alzamon "Betrayer of Hope" and then names Ishamael the Betrayer of Hope. Neither Verin nor Egwene understands its meaning.
Verin gives Egwene a folder of papers detailing the women who left the Tower with Liandrin, giving any details Verin could find on record, and a list and description of the ter'angreal they took. Verin says she sees no use in the information, and Egwene becomes suspicious that perhaps Verin is also Black Ajah. She waves the thought aside and tells Verin she trusts her.
Verin then turns the conversation to Dreamers, telling Egwene she is the first Tower Dreamer since Corianin Nedeal four hundred and seventy-three years ago. Verin begins to explain what a Dreamer does to Egwene, drawing first a map of lines representing the Worlds that Might Be. She tells them how these worlds and their very lives are woven into the Pattern of an Age, and how those patterns are further interwoven into the Great Pattern. She then explains how some in the Age of Legends believed that there were still more worlds, overlapping all the Worlds that Might be, and that the Dark One and Creator exist in all worlds simultaneously.
Verin then tells Egwene that there is a third constant, a world within each of these worlds known as Tel'aran'rhiod, or "the World of Dreams." She then tells Egwene that true Dreamers can enter Tel'aran'rhiod. Verin thinks that the World of Dreams may be a tool Egwene can use to hunt the Black Ajah and gives her a stone ring ter'angreal that Corianin Nedeal claimed allowed easy passage into the World of Dreams. Verin warns Egwene that what happens in the World of Dreams is real and that she must keep the ring secret and sends her off.
- Verin describes the Dark One as Paradox. If he is free in one World, he is free in all and if he is imprisoned in one world, he is imprisoned in all. However, we know from Rand's journey through the Portal Stone that there seem to be worlds where the Dragon Reborn died before the Last Battle
- Verin knows of the task entrusted to Egwene and Nynaeve, so Siuan must have decided to trust her.
This section contains Notes on this Chapter which may contain spoilers. Please expand to view.
- The line about Ba'alzamon being a hidden name is about as strong a confirmation as we could get that he is Ishamael, in case there was any doubt left
- Verin says the Amyrlin believes in bringing girls on too slowly - they do seem to learn much slower than damane, but Siuan later apologises for forcing them