"An open sack hides nothing, an open door hides little, but an open man is surely hiding something."
   — Lini Eltring

External summary

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Setting: Samara, Aboard the Riverserpent, Tel'aran'rhiod, Boannda

Point of view: Nynaeve al'Meara

Nynaeve forces Captain Agni Neres of the Riverserpent to take all of the refugees on the docks aboard his ship. She pays him what she thinks is a reasonable fare for their passage. Nynaeve and Elayne take over the captain's tiny cabin. Elyane is upset because Neres is a smuggler, but Nynaeve points out they have used similar men in the past. Elayne blackmails Neres into throwing much of his cargo in the river to give the refugees room in the hold.

They begin making good time down the river with the sails full. Nynaeve finally accuses Elayne of channeling wind the way she learned from the Sea Folk Windfinder. Over the next days the tension between Nynaeve, Elayne, and Birgitte finally begins to fade since they can't vent on the ship with everyone watching and listening. Nynaeve heals the wounded Shienarans but does so carefully so no one knows she channeled.

Nynaeve becomes close with several women on the boat. Nicola, who lost her future husband to the prophet; Marigan, with two sons that don't speak; and Areina. A comment Nynaeve makes to Elayne makes Birgitte aware the Elayne really is the Daughter-heir of Andor. They reach Boannda the third day where most of the refugees depart. Nicola, Marigan, and Areina stay on, though. After they leave the city, Nynaeve tells Neres the next destination is Salidar. Nynaeve goes to sleep with the dream ring ter'angreal, hoping to meet Egwene in Tel'aran'rhiod, but she doesn't show up.

Elayne and Nynaeve begin going to Tel'aran'rhiod together, with Elayne using a ter'angreal taken from Liandrin's group of Black Sisters in Tear. The two gather information from the White Tower, try to learn more about Tel'aran'rhiod, and occasionally have a bit of fun. They meet Egwene and Amys, who are surprised to find both women there at the same time. Nynaeve keeps trying to ask about the messages Egwene passed to her in her dreams but Egwene keeps interrupting her to change the topic. Egwene was not supposed to do that unsupervised so she is trying to avoid the Wise Ones finding out. After the meeting ends, Elayne and Nynaeve meet Egwene in Sheriam's study, where she dresses them down for not keeping secret what they were told to keep secret. After five days of travel on the river they reach the vicinity of Salidar and everyone is rowed ashore.