Submission 20 - Keith "Diomedes" Casner


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Chapter 1: Lord of the Two Rivers Icon: Wolf

Excerpt: "The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass, leaving memories that become legend. Legend fades to myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth comes again. In one Age, called the Third Age by some, an Age long past, an Age yet to come, a wind rose in the Mountains of Mist. The wind was not the beginning. There are neither beginnings nor endings to the turnings of the Wheel of Time. But it was *a* beginning.

Eastward it blew, down the steep slopes where only a few hardy shrubs eked out an existence in the frigid soil. The wind gusted eastward and descended through the forested valleys where kingdoms had risen and fallen. It howled past ancient stones which once had been the mighty walls and towers of the great nation of Manetheren, stones which now marked that nation's grave. Onward it blew, through the well-treed foothills called by some the Westwood, and into the farming country of the Two Rivers, rustling the dark leaves of the tabac plants, setting the chimes hung by a farm cottage to jingling.

Finally the wind came to the village called Emond's Field, where it swept across the Green, setting the two great banners flapping, the one emblazoned with a red wolf's head and its companion with a red eagle. The wind whirled past a stone plinth freshly inscribed with so many names that it stood nearly five paces high, then gusted through an open window on the third floor of a sprawling manor house, the newness of whose stone and wood construction contrasted sharply with the ancient inn which lay across the Green."

Synopsis: Alanna visits Lord Perrin Goldeneyes and Lady Faile at his new abode in Emond's Field. She probes Faile, who has been complaining of nausea, with the Power and announces that she is with child. And there was much rejoicing. Gaul and Chiad, permanent houseguests of Perrin and Faile until now, announce that they will be returning to the Three-fold Land at last. Bain had left many weeks ago. We soon move to Aram, who spars with Tam and defeats him; Aram has been practicing the sword fanatically with Tam and the Warders and has become very talented. The wolves have returned to the Westwood. Most of the Two Rivers folk have moved back to their farms, but some have stayed and built new houses in Emond's Field. A handful of the Companions continue to hang around Perrin, to his dismay. They rotate in and out from their farms or homes, and now include some Deven Ride and Watch Hill folk. Alanna has bonded Wil al'Seen as a Warder, and he has also been practicing the sword. She and Verin have been instructing several TR girls who have the spark - including Bode Cauthon! - and several more who lack it but are trainable. Loial has been working furiously on his book. A messenger comes from Taren Ferry, which has been rebuilt and repopulated by *true* Two Riversians - a contingent of the Queen's Guards have appeared at the Taren River!

Chapter 2: The Old Blood Icon: Wolf

Synopsis: Perrin summons the Companions and rides out to Taren Ferry to meet the Queen's Guards. They had been sent by Morgase and Gaebril not long before her flight from Caemlyn. They are rather unhappy with finding organized government and troops flying alien banners. Perrin crosses the river to parley with them, bringing only Faile, Gaul, Chiad, Tam and Aram. The Guardsmen behave rudely, being Gaebril's "new men," and try to seize them. They escape, leaving the QGs on the far side of the Taren without a way to cross, but they have to kill a number of QGs and Faile is captured. Perrin is very irked - in the heat of the moment he declares that he will "never submit to Andor or any other nation." Perrin summons up the full militia to Taren Ferry - over two thousand men, to help "persuade" the QGs - who number only about a thousand. So the QGs pack up and leave, taking Faile as a hostage and threatening to kill her if they are pursued. Perrin, Aram and the Aiel pursue them and in the night, with the help of wolves, liberate her from the QGs. The next day, the TREF (Two Rivers Expeditionary Force) sets out after the QGs.

Chapter 3: Meeting at Baerlon Icon: ????

Synopsis: The QGs hope to take refuge in Baerlon from their pursuers - but find it in ruins, blasted and charred. No one living remains. Almost simultaneous with their arrival at the devastated town, however, is a force of Saldean soldiers, three thousand horsemen strong, led by Davram Bashere; he is seeking Mazrim Taim. DB informs the QGs that Morgase and Gaebril no longer rule in Andor - Rand al'Thor does. The QG commander convinces DB that the army pursuing the QGs (the TREF) are the culprits in the destruction of Baerlon, not Taim. DB has his doubts, but agrees to help crush them. The combined force essays from Baerlon to meet the TREF, and just as battle is about to be joined, Faile recognizes her father. Clash of arms is not averted, however, as the QGs quickly turn on the Saldeans from within. They are crushed, but not without many casualties. On the field of battle, a wounded DB, Faile and Perrin meet. After some tense moments, DB and Perrin realize they like each other, DB scolds Faile for running off, Faile sulks. Excerpt:

Chapter 4: To Find the False Dragon

Synopsis: DB tells them of Rand's amnesty for male channelers, that he hopes to find Taim and recruit him for Rand. Alanna and Verin are appalled at first, but finally agree to help control Taim if necessary when he is found. They have also brought along their pseudo-Novices whom they had been teaching, and they hope to use them also against Taim, if need be. Perrin enters the wolf dream to try and locate Taim, and finds evidence that he is moving southeast, towards Altara. He also has several new visions: Mat and Thom standing by the Tower of Ghenjei; Fain stalking Egwene, and being stalked in turn by Slayer; Nynaeve fighting Seanchan with an a'dam on her wrist. When he awakens, he finds out that Verin has vanished again - Tomas is quite distraught. Gaul and Chiad set off for Caemlyn to join the other Aiel and update Rand. DB happens to mention the upheaval that beset the Tower - Alanna had not yet heard, of course, and Verin is already gone before it is revealed. DB doesn't know the details Alanna wants, but she doesn't want to leave Perrin's band without an Aes Sedai, so she fumes with frustration. The force sets off after Taim.

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