Authors: Robert Jordan
Praise for Robert Jordan’s
“Jordan’s multivolume epic [is] a feast for fantasy aficionados.”
Book One: THE EYE OF THE WORLD
“New readers are advised to start with the first book,
The Eye of the World.
It may take you a year of steady reading, but by next year you’ll be chomping at the bit to jump on the newest book.”
—Robert Knox, MPG Newspapers
Book Two: THE GREAT HUNT
“On very rare occasions, very talented storytellers create worlds that are beyond fantasy; worlds that become realities. Robert Jordan has.”
—Morgan Llywelyn, author of
Lion of Ireland
Book Three: THE DRAGON REBORN
books to read this year.”
Science Fiction Review
Book Four: THE SHADOW RISING
“The fourth volume of the most ambitious American fantasy saga continues to suggest that The Wheel of Time will also be the finest.”
Book Five: THE FIRES OF HEAVEN
“Rich and enthralling.”
by Robert Jordan
The Eye of the World
The Great Hunt
The Dragon Reborn
The Shadow Rising
The Fires of Heaven
Lord of Chaos
A Crown of Swords
The Path of Daggers
Crossroads of Twilight
Knife of Dreams
by Robert Jordan
and Brandon Sanderson
The Gathering Storm
A TOM DOHERTY ASSOCIATES BOOK
The author and publisher have provided this e-book to you without Digital Rights Management software (DRM) applied so that you can enjoy reading it on your personal devices. This e-book is for your personal use only. You may not print or post this e-book, or make this e-book publicly available in any way. You may not copy, reproduce or upload this e-book, other than to read it on one of your personal devices.
This is a work of fiction. All of the characters, organizations, and events portrayed in this novel are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously.
THE FIRES OF HEAVEN
Copyright © 1993 by The Bandersnatch Group, Inc.
The phrases “The Wheel of Time
” and “The Dragon Reborn™,” and the snake-wheel symbol, are trademarks of Robert Jordan.
All rights reserved.
Frontispiece by Dan Dos Santos
Maps by Ellisa Mitchell
Interior illustrations by Matthew C. Nielsen and Ellisa Mitchell
A Tor Book
Published by Tom Doherty Associates, LLC
175 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10010
is a registered trademark of Tom Doherty Associates, LLC.
First Edition: November 1993
First E-book Edition: February 2010
Manufactured in the United States of America
The light of her eyes is my Light.
With his coming are the dread fires born again. The hills burn, and the land turns sere. The tides of men run out, and the hours dwindle. The wall is pierced, and the veil of parting raised. Storms rumble beyond the horizon, and the fires of heaven purge the earth. There is no salvation without destruction, no hope this side of death.
The Prophecies of the Dragon
believed translated by N’Delia Basolaine
First Maid and Swordfast to Raidhen of Hoi Cuchone
(circa 400 AB)
The First Sparks Fall
laida do Avriny a’Roihan absently fingered the long, seven-striped stole about her shoulders, the stole of the Amyrlin Seat, as she sat behind her wide writing table. Many would have accounted her beautiful, at first glance, but a second look made it clear that the severity of her ageless, Aes Sedai face was not a momentary matter. Today there was something more, a light of anger in her dark eyes. If anyone had noticed.
She barely listened to the women arrayed on stools before her. Their dresses were every color from white to the darkest red, in silk or wool as each woman’s taste dictated, yet all but one wore their formal shawls, embroidered White Flame of Tar Valon centered on their backs, colored fringe proclaiming their Ajahs, as though this were a meeting of the Hall of the Tower. They discussed reports and rumors of events in the world, trying to sift fact from fancy, trying to decide the Tower’s course of action, but they seldom even glanced at the woman behind the table, the woman they had sworn to obey. Elaida could not keep her full attention on them. They did not know what was really important. Or rather, they knew and feared to speak of it.
“There is apparently something happening in Shienar.” That was Danelle, slight and often seemingly lost in a dream, the only Brown sister present. Green and Yellow also had only one sister apiece, and none of the three Ajahs was pleased about that. There were no Blues. Now Danelle’s
big blue eyes looked thoughtfully inward; an unnoticed ink smudge stained her cheek, and her dark gray wool dress was rumpled. “There are rumors of skirmishes. Not with Trollocs, and not Aiel, though raids through the Niamh Passes appear to have increased. Between Shienarans. Unusual for the Borderlands. They seldom fight each other.”
“If they intend to have a civil war, they have chosen the proper time for it,” Alviarin said coolly. Tall and slim and all in white silk, she was the one without a shawl. The stole of the Keeper around her shoulders was white also, to show she had been raised from the White Ajah. Not Red, Elaida’s former Ajah, as tradition held. Whites were always cool. “The Trollocs might as well have vanished. The entire Blight seems quiet enough for two farmers and a novice to guard.”
Teslyn’s bony fingers shuffled papers on her lap, though she did not look at them. One of four Red sisters there—more than any other Ajah—she ran Elaida a close second for severity, though no one had ever thought her beautiful. “Better perhaps if it did no be so quiet,” Teslyn said, her Illianer accent strong. “I did receive a message this morning that the Marshal-General of Saldaea does have an army on the move. No toward the Blight, but in the opposite direction. South and east. He would no ever have done that if the Blight did no seem to be asleep.”
“Then word of Mazrim Taim is seeping out.” Alviarin could have been discussing the weather or the price of carpets instead of a potential disaster. Much effort had gone into capturing Taim, and as much into hiding his escape. No good to the Tower if the world learned they could not hold on to a false Dragon once he was taken. “And it seems that Queen Tenobia, or Davram Bashere, or both, thinks we cannot be trusted to deal with him again.”
Dead quiet fell at the mention of Taim. The man could channel—he had been on his way to Tar Valon to be gentled, cut off from the One Power forever, when he was broken free—yet that was not what curbed tongues. Once the existence of a man able to channel the One Power had been the deepest anathema; hunting such men down was the main reason of existence for the Red, and every Ajah helped as it could. But now most of the women beyond the table shifted on their stools, refusing to meet each other’s eyes, because speaking of Taim brought them too close to another subject they did not want to speak aloud. Even Elaida felt bile rise in her stomach.