Channelers and the Men Who Love Them: Season Two
Episode Five – Xpander
“I do not understand how you allowed yourself to get into this situation, Thom,” Nynaeve tried to keep her voice level as she handed the old gleeman some tea. “Not to mention, I have no idea what you see in Moiraine. She’s not very friendly. Or nice. Doesn’t have any hobbies or know the meaning of fun. Pale as a maggot and walks around with her nose in the air. Dye her blond and she’d be Elayne!”
Thom sipped his tea, but he still hadn’t touched any of the biscuits she had made. “I could say a few choice things about Elaida….”
“Completely different!” How dare he! Who did he think he was? “I was obviously under Compulsion at the time. There is no way I would willing behave that way with Ellie.”
“Elaida.” Nynaeve did not like where this conversation was going. She liked even less that Thom was outright laughing at her. At her! No one laughed at Nynaeve unless she said they could. “No one has any proof I wasn’t under Compulsion,” except Elaida of course, “so there is no need to guffaw like that.”
“I don’t recall saying I disbelieved you.” His disbelief was written all over his face! “Have you heard from Lan recently?”
Clearly he was trying to change the subject; Nynaeve thought it might be best to let him. “No. I still cannot believe he joined the Whitecloaks. Not that they do much these days besides roam around trying to…do things…with women. Perhaps Lan is just trying to make them more honorable.”
Nynaeve felt an intense desire to tug her braid. “What other reason could he have for joining?”
“You mean besides your ‘death’? Don’t tug your braid at me, woman! Why, maybe all Lan needs is some children to keep him occupied in his old years.” He had the nerve to look her up and down. “You are still fertile enough for the job.”
With a wordless shriek, Nynaeve flew at Thom and slapped him until he limped out of the room.
Asmodean had tried very hard to avoid Rand al’Thor, but there were so many hallways and rooms in the Tower he found himself lost and cornered soon enough.
“Please! You cannot still be angry about all those years ago! I was attacked; I didn’t leave you!”
Rand just stood there staring at him without a single emotion flickering across his face. It was hard to tell if Asmodean was looking at the face of sanity or its reverse. Finally, Rand stepped toward him.
“Asmodean. I should kill you. You did some majorly bad things, man, majorly bad. But dude, sleeping with my girl is just plain wrong.”
“As if any woman who had me would have anything to do with you!” He said the words, but Asmodean had a feeling he knew what Crazy Boy was talking about.
“Cadsuane is mine. I claim her! I gave her a daughter!”
“How do you know she’s yours?” The world didn’t need anymore al’Thor spawn. What was Cadsuane thinking?!
“I know because…because…don’t try and divert me! I challenge you to a duel!” Rand gave a satisfied nod then walked away as if he expected Asmodean to follow him.
Rand was headed toward a clearing on the other side of the river. It didn’t occur to either to simply Travel there until they were halfway across the island, at which point both were content to pretend they simply enjoyed walking. While they strode past an inn built to look like crashing waves or a drowning cat or something, they caught sight of a woman who looked remarkably like Aviendha. But when Rand called out to her she ran away like the Great Lord himself had just flashed her.
“I thought she was one of your women, Rand al’Thor. Why is she running away from you?”
Crazy Boy muttered under his breath and just continued to lead the way.
Moiraine enjoyed having tea and biscuits and spending time with her family. Sometimes she even liked to combine the two. This was not one of those times. Innloine and Anvaere were gossiping and giggling like fool girls despite the gray in their hair. Moiraine didn’t mind that so much as she minded them gossiping about her and her husband.
“Lord Mat is rather cute when he is jealous, wouldn’t you say Inny?”
“Oh yes, Anvaere, his looks improve a thousand fold when he gets all puffed up!”
“Indeed! Normally I don’t understand what Moiraine sees in him–he’s a little tall for my tastes–but lately he seems a lot more attractive.”
“Mmmhmmm, I agree! He is a nice boy, too. Why, he doesn’t even mind the bit of pudge Moiraine gained from the baby.”
“Stop talking about me while I am right here!” Moiraine shouted at them, but they just went right on ignoring her. And she didn’t have any pudge! She was just curvy.
The door slide open enough to admit Elayne and her too tall, too dark, too handsome lover Raul. “Hello, my aunts. How are you?” Elayne didn’t wait for a reply. “Moiraine, I wish to discuss Andor with you.”
Instead, Elayne and Raul sat down across from Moiraine. “Aunt Moiraine, please hear me. I know you will not give back what is rightfully mine. I can even understand your reasons. But at least consider placing me in charge of the…the Province of Andor.”
“How would that be any different than making you a queen?” Moiraine had to smack Raul’s hand away from her biscuits.
“I am trying to help you, Moiraine. Andor is a different beast than Cairhien. Andorans require a certain set of skills to handle.” Elayne smiled so her dimple showed. It didn’t have the effect she wanted.
“I am so tired of you. So tired. I want you out of my sight.” Innloine and Anvaere were suddenly paying very close attention to Moiraine. Moiraine was feeling a little evil. She liked it. “I hereby banish you to Emond’s Field. Raul shall be exiled with you. Am I not merciful?”
Galad looked pretty when he was angry: or so he was told. Today it was Lan Mandragoran who caused him grief. The man was being truant from his duties with the Children of the Light. And he had had such high hopes for Lan. He couldn’t let such an example run loose and so it was that he had tracked the man down to the city of Cairhien.
While searching the palace he ran into Elayne who was for some reason surrounded by a horde of soldiers. She attempted to flag him down, but he had no time for talk, so after a polite bow and nod he continued on his way. He couldn’t be sure but he thought she might have actually cursed at him.
Lan, as it turned out, was sitting in a garden staring at nothing.
“al’Lan Mandragoran, I am afraid I will have to arrest you for abandoning your duties as a soldier.”
“Lan, I am speaking to you. Lan? Look, I know you can hear me. Please stand. I do not want to use force against you.”
“You are pushing the limits.”
Galad could feel his blood rising. Lan had never been much of a talker but this was beyond reason. “al’Lan Mandragoran if you do not rise at this instant–eep!”
A woman screamed as she witnessed that beautiful face of Galad Damodred’s get backhanded.
Romanda and twenty fellow Aes Sedai had gathered in Cairhien. The girl Amyrlin had not prohibited them from taking back Siuan Sanche by force. The fact that Romanda had conveniently forgot to ask for permission wasn’t even worth mentioning. Since arriving she had discovered Elaida a’Roihan was also in the city; what a great boom for Romanda! Tomorrow they would strike, and if one of the two fools was harmed or killed during the capture, well, such is life.