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Setting: Royal Palace of Andor in Caemlyn, Black Tower

Point of view: Rand al'Thor

Rand asks Min if she would like to visit the farm with him, but the thought frightens her and she declines. She needs to head back to the Aes Sedai from Salidar to let them know about Rand's rules. She gives him a brief kiss before leaving. Rand can sense that Alanna, the Aes Sedai who bonded him, appears to be in good spirits; Rand suspects she is with the nine Salidar Aes Sedai. With Verin, that would bring the total to eleven. He goes to the farm without his Aiel guards.

The farm has changed a lot since his last visit. A new barn, more animals in pens, trees cleared, and some other buildings under construction. The men have started calling the farm the Black Tower as a balance to the Aes Sedai's White Tower. Rand has the students assembled. He announces that they will be training to become Asha'man, which means "Guardian" in the Old Tongue. Just as the White Tower has ranks before a woman can become a full Sister, the Black Tower will have ranks before a man can become a full Asha'man: Soldier and Dedicated. The rank of Dedicated will be indicated by a silver pin in the shape of a sword on one lapel; the rank of Dedicated will be indicated by a red and gold pin in the shape of a dragon on the other lapel. Rand awards both ranks to Taim and places the pins on Taim's lapels. Taim looks furious. Taim and Rand still disagree about what to do about the Aes Sedai in Caemlyn or the rumors of Reds trying to intercept men coming to the farm. Rand has an argument with Lews Therin in his head. Taim can tell something is wrong and urges Rand to hang onto his sanity.