I have one last suspicious activity to note before moving on. I can’t believe I missed it the first time around – good thing I read the graphic novel too!
WHY is Bela even on this journey to begin with?
The obvious answer is because Egwene showed up at the last minute and needed a horse. But how did she come to know?
It’s incredibly last minute, preparations are done in secret, and nobody has been informed. They even have an Aes Sedai and a Warder watching out for them to keep anyone from finding out. NOBODY else suspects anything. Not Nynaeve, who keeps a watch on all the villagers. Not Thom, experienced at intrigue as he is – he really only finds out because he’s been preparing to leave on his own in the loft when they enter the stable. Not even Padan Fain, who’s already been set like a hound after the three boys. So why did Egwene notice where everyone else did not?
Did someone perhaps… give her a nudge in the right direction? Someone whose ravens had noted her early in her childhood and remembered her as wanting adventure?
When Bela found out that everyone was leaving she panicked because they weren’t planning on taking her along. As it would be awkward for a horse to follow them on her own, she reached out and gave Egwene’s mind a little tug, pointed out what was going on. It wouldn’t be hard to find her, since she’s always wanted adventure and Bela’s known her in this form for a while.
And to those who will ask why she didn’t tug Padan Fain instead – she needed someone not only would be receptive to going on adventure, but someone who the others would also be willing to bring along without suspicion. Padan Fain is, unfortunately, quite suspicious. Besides, he has his own horses.