The Tower Mystery - Episode 5

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Author: Elyss Koh'inor, November 2016

TarValon.Net members have signed up to be included in a mystery! The story will be released in six episodes over the next six months. Look out for your friends, or if you signed up, for your own name! You can catch up on the first, second, third, and fourth episodes if necessary. Have fun reading.

The Amyrlin frowned, “You questioned a citizen of Tar Valon?”

Leora nodded.

“You tried a ter’angreal that could have harmed you?”

Leora hesitated before nodding again.

“You then tried the ter’angreal on the Citizen?”

Leora winced. She glanced at the Master of Accepted and Soldiers, who stood in a corner of the office with his arms folded.

Kyla Sterling was there too. The Head of the Blue kept her face still with Aes Sedai calm. The Amyrlin picked up the necklace.

“Mother,” Kyla Sedai stepped forward, “The fact that the Accepted withheld this information from my investigation shows that she should not be involved.”

The Amyrlin raised an eyebrow. “And how is that? Historically, Aes Sedai have not always jumped at the opportunity to share information.”

Kyla’s lips pinched together.

Padron Gaidin leaned forward, opening his mouth to speak, but the Amyrlin held up her hand. “I know you think this is dangerous Padron, but I think Leora Maltana has proven that she deserves the trust I placed upon her. Unless she wishes to relinquish the investigation, I would be glad to see her continue.”

Padron nodded sharply, obviously displeased.

“I would like to continue, Mother.” Leora said. She had no clues and few ideas left, but the Light would burn her before she admitted that in front of Kyla Sedai or the Amyrlin.

Rhed al’Tere nodded. “Kyla, you have spoken with Elanda Tonil?”

“Yes Mother, though she did not give much information. The Yellows sent me away before I could ask many questions.”

“Very well. You are all dismissed. But Leora…”

The Accepted looked up from where she had dropped into a low curtsey.

“Do not tamper with ter’angreal without an Aes Sedai again.”

Leora gulped. “Yes Mother.”

“You want me to do what?”

“Just ask her a few questions. Casually.”

Mychael Ritoryn shook his head, “Just casually ask, ‘oh, did you happen to recognize the people who trapped you in a closet for three days?’”

Leora raised an eyebrow, “I thought healers were supposed to have a clam, subtle bedside manner.”

“You haven’t met many healers then.” Mychael scoffed. “If I was caught by Raevienda Sedai or Inanna Sedai or any Aes Sedai who happens to own a Yellow shawl I’d be scrubbing floors for a month!”

“What if we switched duties then?” Leora pleaded. She had already asked several Yellows to let her speak to Elanda. Mychael was her last hope. “I could take your sickroom duties and you could take mine.”

Mychael laughed. “You don’t have any duties since the Amyrlin made you her private investigator.”

Not so much private anymore. “Exactly. I know you’ve been wanting to practice for your test to become Aes Sedai…”

Mychael seemed to think seriously on the idea. A bell chimed the hour in the distance.

“All right. Your shift starts now. Room three needs his lunch, and make sure room four doesn’t start howling or room six will wet the bed again.”

Leora blinked.

“You didn’t think Elanda was the only patient here did you?” Mychael grinned. “Instructions are on the door. Good luck.”

Leora opened the door to Elanda’s sickroom. She had already done her duties with the other patients, cleaning the rooms and bringing trays of food back and forth. The Aes Sedai were still learning how to Heal some types of sicknesses.

Elanda seemed fairly calm. She was sitting in a wicker chair by the window, glass open to let in a cool breeze. The room was bright with sunlight and several candles. Leora had read on Elanda’s instructions that the Accepted was now terrified of small spaces.

The other Accepted turned to look at Leora, and smiled softly. All physical appearances of her captivity had been Healed, but Elanda’s eyes seemed haunted. “You’ve come to ask questions, haven’t you?”

Leora looked away, making sure several candles were trimmed and the wax cleaned up.

“I may not be completely well, but I can still hear,” Elanda said. “What do you want to know?”

Leora sat on the edge of Elanda’s bed, facing the Accepted in the chair. “What do you remember?”

Elanda looked out of the window again. “A flash of light. I was bound by weaves of Air before they subdued me. There were four of them, wearing hooded cloaks. I…”

The Accepted trailed off, staring into the distance.

“She does not like speaking of her captivity.”

Leora jumped up from the bed and turned. Luna Morn, Head of the Yellow Ajah, stood inside the doorway. The Aes Sedai motioned for Leora to follow her out of the room. With one last glance at Elanda, Leora obeyed.

“I told Kyla that it would be several days before Elanda would be well enough for questions.” Luna Sedai said, a touch of asperity in her voice. “She will not have lasting effects from this experience other than mild claustrophobia, but if she is continually asked to relive those three days she may not recover.”

“I am sorry Aes Sedai.” Leora bobbed a curtsey. “But Elanda is the key to understanding the plot to kill the Amyrlin.”

“Perhaps.” Luna Sedai crossed her arms, twitching her yellow-fringed shawl. “But if she never fully recovers, she will never be of use to you or anyone else associated with the investigation.”

Luna looked at the door next to Elanda’s. Room two. “I already informed Kyla, but I think you should know as well. The woman in room two is perfectly well in both mind and body.”

Leora was puzzled. “Why is she here then?” She had served the woman lunch just before speaking to Elanda.

“She appeared the night of the sabotaged fireworks.” Luna said. “Kyla dismissed the information as coincidence. What do you think?”

“One question.” Leora replied. “Has Willin Gaidin or Cahalan Sedai visited this person?”

“Willin came, and Samarasin went in with him. As far as I know Cahalan has not come.”

Leora thought many things at once. The person who had lost the disguise ter’angreal would have had to explain their presence at the White Tower somehow.

The Accepted moved towards the door of sickroom two. Luna Sedai followed, but did not try to stop her. When Leora opened the door, the bed was empty, and the open window let a breeze ruffle the clean linen curtains.

When Leora looked out of the window she didn’t see a body on the grounds below. The saboteur hadn’t jumped, but had somehow managed to climb out and escaped.

“Cahalan, Willin, Samarasin, and whoever was impersonating Elanda.” Leora murmured. Every one of them was still in the Tower.

Leora straightened. They were still in the Tower. They hadn’t finished what they had come to do, and now the one had escaped…

The Amyrlin was in more danger than ever.

Thanks for reading the fifth episode! The final episode will appear in next month's issue.