Forlag Tor Books
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The air smelled good - of ale, smoke, and of the washcloth that had recently wiped the counter. He liked that. There was something calming about a good, rowdy tavern that was also kept clean. Well, clean as was reasonable, anyway. Nobody liked a tavern that was too clean. That made a place feel new. Like a coat that had never been worn or a pipe that had never been smoked.
"However", Norry said, raising a slender finger. "I have reason to belive that Duhara Sedai may have had a hand in the document you seem to be treating with... um... unusual reverence." He glanced at the pages Elayne had tossed to the floor. One bore the distinct outline of her shoe.
''Well, boy,'' Cadsuane finally said. ''You-''
''Are you ever going to give up that affectation, Cadsuane Sedai?'' Rand asked. ''Calling me boy? I no longer mind, though it does feel odd. I was four hundred years old on the day I died during the Age of Legends. I suspect that would make you my junior by several decades at the least. I show you respect. Perhaps it would be appropriate for you to return it. If you wish, you may call me Rand Sedai. I am, so far as I know, the only male Aes Sedai still alive who was properly raised but who never turned to the shadow.''
Cadsuane paled visibly.
Rand's smile turned kindly. ''You wish to come in and dance with the Dragon Reborn, Cadsuane. I am what I need to be. Be comforted - you face the forsaken, but you have one as ancient as they on your side.'' He turned away from her, eyes growing distant. '' Now, if only great age really were an indication of great wisdom. As easy to wish that the Dark One would simply let us be.''
"Don't ask me," Mat said, scowling. " I said this place doesn't make sense. If that's the oddest thing we see here, I'll be a Murandian's mustache. Come on."