View Full Version : What, exactly, is the Dragon?

09-10-2011, 02:32 AM
On one hand we have the concept of the Dragon Soul, reincarnated, innate. RJ confirms this. The Dragon is one with the land. LTT is reborn as Rand, but the two are ostensibly the same individual. The Dragon is the Creator's representative of sorts, recycled through the Wheel.

On the other, "Dragon" was a title apparently bestowed upon LTT in the Third Age. Allegedly, Demandred would have been named "Dragon" if not for LTT, and ultimately left the Light because of this slight. Then again, somebody recently linked to a RJ quote about LTT being tied to the land in the same way, back in the Third Age; how is this possible if he was consciously named "Dragon", presumably by the Aes Sedai of the age? Is this like a Dalai Lama selection process or something? Did LTT actually "earn" the title, and if so how?

I'm somewhat confused.

09-10-2011, 03:35 AM
What is a Dragon?

In literal terms, a Gara soul re-born in a male human's body by the Pattern. (Theory)

Who is the Dragon, in the Second Age? In the Third Age?

The common claim is L.T.T. was the Dragon in the 2nd Age.
Yet I'd strongly suspect that L.T.T. was NOT the true Dragon in the 2nd Age. Who was the Dragon then? Beidomon.

The common claim is Rand al'Thor is the Dragon in the 3rd Age. Yet I'm strongly support a claim that Valan Luca is the true blind Dragon of the 3rd Age.

Charn knew some of this truth, meanwhile his grandson Coumin believed Aes Sedai propaganda, propaganda meant to hide his true identity from the Shadow. Coumin's own son Jonai thinks of Coumin as an "aberration" for a Da'Shain Aiel: 'hardly Aiel at all'.

He enjoyed Charn’s stories even if he could not make himself believe, but some earned the old man frowns and scoldings. Like when he claimed to have served one of the Forsaken, once. Not just any Forsaken, but Lanfear herself. As well say he had served Ishamael. If Charn had to make up stories, Coumin wished he could say he had served Lews Therin, the great leader himself. Of course, everyone would ask why he was not serving the Dragon now, but that would be better than the way things were. Coumin did not like the way citizens looked at Charn when he said that Lanfear had not always been evil.

The Fires of Heaven, Chapter "Rhuidean" -- Coumin point of view and Rand al'Thor point of view

Coumin did not grasp that the Dragon was an Aes Sedai, who was not a Warrior, not a General. Just a man, attempting to serve his People. A man who had already died serving his People.

Robert Jordan has stated that Beidomon killed himself. Robert Jordan did not state how this occurred. How is a key question.

My working hypothesis claim is Beidomon knew he was going to die, when he re-sealed the Bore. A Bore, he originally drilled no less. Beidomon knew what had to be done.

The true 2nd Age Dragon (Beidomon), died in the attempt of re-sealing the Bore. L.T.T. survived to live after that event (if TEotW book, Prologue is to be believed).

Reputation versus Reality: Sammael's claims

Sammael knew that Lews Therin's reputation and claims were not completely accurate:

Sammael’s hand trembled with anger, nearly slopping punch from his goblet before he could still it. Rand al’Thor was not Lews Therin. He himself had outlived the great Lews Therin Telamon, handing out praise for victories he could not have won himself and expecting others to lap it up. His only regret was that the man had not left a grave for him to spit on.

Lord of Chaos, Chapter 6 "Threads of Woven of Shadow" -- Sammael point of view, with Graendal, his thoughts

09-10-2011, 05:32 AM
Demandred would in no way have been named the "Dragon" if not for LTT. He might have been named Tamyrlin, though, if not for Lews Therin. The Dragon is a particular soul spun out for a function, and that soul was LTT and is now Rand. It is not purely a title, however, but a specific individual reincarnation of a soul.

09-10-2011, 07:00 AM
Tamyrlin was not a title like Amyrlin is. Amyrlin is theoretically a corruption of the name Tamyrlin, and Tamyrlin was theoretically the guy who discovered channeling at the dawn of the Age of Legends. The First Among Servants wore the Ring of Tamyrlin (https://docs.google.com/View?docID=0ARw8aVNqPsL5ZGNqc3BqcWdfNDg0dm1mZHZuZ2 g&revision=_latest#Ring_of_Tamyrlin).

Just saying.

09-10-2011, 08:49 AM
The First Among Servants wore the Ring of Tamyrlin.
I stand, or rather sit, corrected. Apparently the title I was referring to is called "First Among Servants."

Weird Harold
09-10-2011, 12:49 PM
On the other, "Dragon" was a title apparently bestowed upon LTT in the Third Age.

The Soul designated "Dragon" in this Turning is so designated because the appelation of Dragon was bestowed on LTT. It is NOT a fixed designation for every Turning; in some other Turning, Rand might be called the "Hamster Reborn" or "Unicorn Reborm" depending on what appellation was applied to LTT.

The Soul is the same "Messiah" or "Creator's Champion" but the name is arbitrary and can/does change with each Turning.

09-10-2011, 12:54 PM
A view which is somewhat contradicted by the DO's statement in LoC:

09-10-2011, 01:06 PM
Tamyrlin was not a title like Amyrlin is. Amyrlin is theoretically a corruption of the name Tamyrlin, and Tamyrlin was theoretically the guy who discovered channeling at the dawn of the Age of Legends.

Really, Terez? Lew Therins discovered channeling 'At the Dawn of the Age of the Legend? All of 3,000 years before the Bore was drilled?

I assume you really meant to write sometime nearer to the Dusk of the Age of Legends? Yes?

The First Among Servants wore the Ring of Tamyrlin (https://docs.google.com/View?docID=0ARw8aVNqPsL5ZGNqc3BqcWdfNDg0dm1mZHZuZ2 g&revision=_latest#Ring_of_Tamyrlin).

Just saying.

The Ring of Tamyrlin is tied to L.T.T. leading the Nine Rods of Dominion in the 2nd Age, according Elan Morin (e.g. Ishamael; Moridin).

Elan Morin grimaced. “Look at you,” he said scornfully. “Once you stood first among the Servants. Once you wore the Ring of Tamyrlin, and sat in the High Seat. Once you summoned the Nine Rods of Dominion. Now look at you! A pitiful, shattered wretch. But it is not enough. You humbled me in the Hall of Servants . You defeated me at the Gates of Paaran Disen . But I am the greater, now. I will not let you die without knowing that. When you die, your last thought will be the full knowledge of your defeat, of how complete and utter it is. If I let you die at all.”

The Eye of the World, Prologue "Dragonmount" -- Ishamael point of view, via Lews Therin point of view; in alternate Mirror World of Earth set in the past with people

L.T.T. worn the Ring of Tamyrlin in the 2nd Age, however Rand al'Thor has not been seen wearing any Ring in the 3rd Age. Matrim Cauthon on the other hand, wears a Carver's Ring with Nine Crescent Moons with Two Ravens startled by a Fox.

“I answered your question, Tuon, so you answer mine.”

“You know that damane can tell fortunes?” She gave him a stern look, likely expecting him to call it superstition, but he nodded curtly. Some Aes Sedai could Foretell the future. Why not a damane “I asked Lidya to tell mine just before I landed at Ebou Dar. This is what she said. 'Beware the fox that makes the ravens fly, for he will marry you and carry you away. Beware the man who remembers Hawkwing's face, for he will marry you and set you free. Beware the man of the red hand, for him you will marry and none other.' It was your ring that caught my eye first.” He thumbed the long ring unconsciously, and she smiled. A small smile, but a smile. “A fox apparently startling two ravens into flight and nine crescent moons. Suggestive, wouldn't you say? And just now you fulfilled the second part, so I knew for certain it was you.” Selucia made a sound in her throat, and Tuon waggled fingers at her. The bosomy little woman subsided, adjusting her head scarf, but the look she shot at Mat should have been accompanied by a dagger in her hand.

Knife of Dreams, Chapter 36 "Under an Oak" -- Matrim Cauthon point of view; with Tuon, Selucia, Teslyn, Joline, Edesina, Juilin, Amathera, Leilwin, Bayle Domon, Deathwatch Banner General, Setalle Anan, Talmanes, Band of the Red Hand members and others in scene

The number Nine is a special number in the Wheel of Time. Same for the numbers of Ten, Eleven, Twelve, Thirteen, Twenty--all of which possess a special meaning in the Wheel of Time.

The Ring of Tamyrlin like Matrim Cauthon's Carvers' Ring is a symbol of leadership. A symbol of dominion (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dominion) over the Nine Crescent Moon Rulers. In other words, a Pax Cauthon.

Dragon, but not a Ruler?

A vexing problem if Rand al'Thor is the Dragon's soul re-born in the 3rd Age, are Andoran High Seat Abelle's claims:

“I know something of the Karaethon Cycle,” Abelle said. “I believe you are the Dragon Reborn, but nothing there speaks of you ruling, only fighting the Dark One at Tarmon Gai’don.”

Possessing the throne of Illian is a problem, for anyone claiming to be the true Dragon.

Dragon, is a Bannerman?

“The women who guarded you today, for a start,” she said, without so much as pretending to pause for thought, “and a few more that I’ll pick. Maybe twenty or so, altogether. Too few can’t protect you day and night, and you bloody well must be,” she put in firmly, though Elayne had not offered any protest. “Women can guard you where men can’t, and they’ll be discreet just by being who they are. Most people will think they’re ceremonial—your very own Maidens of the Spear—and we’ll give them something, a sash maybe, to make them look more so.” That earned her a very sharp look from Aviendha, which she affected not to notice. “The problem is who to command,” she said, frowning in thought. “Two or three nobles, Hunters, are already arguing for rank ‘sufficient to their station.’ The bloody women know how to give orders, but I’m not sure they know the right bloody orders to give. I could promote Caseille to lieutenant, but she’s more a bannerman at heart, I think.” Birgitte shrugged. “Maybe one of the others will show promise, but I think they are better followers than leaders.”

Winter's Heart, Chapter 10 "A Plan Succeeds" -- Elayne point of view; Birgitte speaking

What is an Bannerman, in Birgitte's judgment?

The woman seemed vaguely familiar, though Perrin was certain he would have remembered her had he ever seen her before. Who was she, to be in the wolf dream? Or was it Moiraine’s Tel’aran’rhiod, too? “Are you Aes Sedai?”

“No, archer.” She laughed. “I only came to warn you, despite the prescripts. Once entered, the Tower of Ghenjei is hard enough to leave in the world of men. Here it is all but impossible. You have a Bannerman’s courage, which some say cannot be told from foolhardiness.”

The Shadow Rising, Chapter 28 "To the Tower of Ghenjei" -- Perrin Aybara point of view; with Birgitte speaking, in a Wolf Dream

A Bannerman is a person with courage, who is a fool too.

How does Matrim Cauthon prefer to use his Bannerman/Standardbearer?

He knew what she was doing. The people in the line had seen three Seanchan soldiers sent running, and who could say for sure why they had run. but now they had seen her disperse a much larger crowd by herself. He would have given her a place in the Band as a Bannerman in a breath. “I'd make a terrible soldier, Standardbearer.” he said, tipping his hat, and she laughed.

Knife of Dreams, Chapter 7 "A Cold Medallion" -- Matrim Cauthon point of view

As a Peacemaker.

Justice shone like a mirror in Artur Hawkwing’s gauntleted fist. “I have fought by your side times beyond number, Lews Therin, and faced you as many more. The Wheel spins us out for its purposes, not ours, to serve the Pattern. I know you, if you do not know yourself. We will drive these invaders out for you.” His warhorse pranced, and he looked around, frowning. “Something is wrong here. Something holds me.” Suddenly he turned his sharp-eyed gaze on Rand. “You are here. Have you the banner?” A murmur ran through those behind him.

“Yes.” Rand tore open the straps of his saddlebags and pulled out the Dragon’s banner. It filled his hands and hung almost to his stallion’s knees. The murmur among the heroes rose.

“The Pattern weaves itself around our necks like halters,” Artur Hawkwing said. “You are here. The banner is here. The weave of this moment is set. We have come to the Horn, but we must follow the banner. And the Dragon.” Hurin made a faint sound as if his throat had seized.

The Great Hunt, Chapter 47 "The Grave Is No Bar to My Call" -- Rand al'Thor point of view; with Birgitte and many others in the scene

Notice the distinction of a "." breaking up a possible single sentence, single concept instead to two sentences, two concepts. Not the Banner and the Dragon, but instead: The Banner. The Dragon.

Notice that Artur Hawkwing never directly calls Lews Therin (Rand al'Thor) the Dragon, at Falme.

What Old Blood memories does Matrim Cauthon recall, before visiting the Eelfinn?

A Bannerman at his side...

They must win here or die. He was known as a gambler; it was time to toss the dice. In a voice that carried over the tumult below, he gave the order as he swung up into his saddle. “Footmen prepare to pass cavalry forward.” His bannerman rode close beside him, the Red Eagle banner flapping over his head, as the command was repeated up and down the line.
Below, the spearmen suddenly moved, sidestepping with good discipline, narrowing their formations, opening wide gaps between. Gaps into which the Trollocs poured, roaring bestial cries, like a black, oozing tide of death.

He drew his sword, raised it high. “Forward the Heart Guard!” He dug his heels in, and his mount leaped down the slope. Behind him, hooves thundered in the charge. “Forward.” He was first to strike into the Trollocs, his sword rising and falling, his bannerman close behind. “For the honor of the Red Eagle!” The Heart Guard pounded into the gaps between the spearmen, smashing the tide, hurling it back. “The Red Eagle!” Half-human faces snarled at him, oddly curved swords sought him, but he cut his way ever deeper. Win or die. “Manetheren!”

The Dragon Reborn, Chapter 19 "Awakening" -- Matrim Cauthon point of view; his thoughts.

After all, why does it matter who carry a Banner?

The sound of music drew him to Asmodean, seated by himself on a granite outcrop with his harp on his knee. The crimson banner’s staff had been twisted into the rocky soil, and the mule tethered to it. “You see, my Lord Dragon,” he said cheerfully, “your bannerman keeps loyally to his duties.” His voice and expression changed, and he said, “If you must have this thing, why not let Mat carry it, or Lan? Or Moiraine, for that matter?

The Fires of Heaven, Chapter 21 "The Gift of a Blade" -- Rand al'Thor point of view; with Asmodean speaking

It's of little importance... a Mule tethered--synomyns for collared, harnessed--to a Crimson Banner, to a Plowman. ;) :D

The wagons quickened, too, though they could not keep up on the slope. Asmodean’s—Jasin Natael’s—patch-covered gleeman’s cloak rippled behind him like the banner he carried at his stirrup, brilliant red with the white-and-black symbol of the ancient Aes Sedai at its center. His face wore a sullen glower; he had not been best pleased at having to be the bannerman. Under that sign he would conquer, the Prophecy of Rhuidean said, and perhaps it would not frighten the world so much as the Dragon Banner, Lews Therin’s banner, that he had left flying over the Stone of Tear. Few would know this sign.

The Fires of Heaven, Chapter 20 "Jangai Pass" -- Rand al'Thor point of view; with Asmodean

Asmodean does not enjoy being a follower, a bannerman either. Yet the Dragon is a follower.

Elaida's foretelling which Alviarin witnesses is very similar to this particular claim of Prophecy of Rhuidean. One difference is Elaida's foretelling claims she will above the Dragon, when this occurs. One interpretation is Elaida will be above the basement rooms, where this conquest occurs. Not that the Dragon will kneel to Elaida/Suffa.

Who has been on the look out for a Bannerman? The Dragon?

Members of the Band of the Red have.

A fat knot of civilians trailed along behind, townsmen and refugees mingled, young men all, watching curiously and listening. It never ceased to amaze Mat. The worse the song made soldiering seem—this was far from the worst—the larger the crowd. Sure as water was wet, some of those men would be talking to a bannerman before the day was out, and most who did would sign their names or make their mark. They must think the song was an attempt to scare them off and keep the glory and loot. At least the pikes were not singing “Dance with Jak o’ the Shadows.” Mat hated that song. Once the lads realized Jak o’ the Shadows was death, they started panting to find a bannerman.

Lord of Chaos, Chapter 5 "A Different Dance" -- Matrim Cauthon point of view; his thoughts in Cairhien

Zombie Sammael
09-10-2011, 03:43 PM
A view which is somewhat contradicted by the DO's statement in LoC:

The DO probably just meant that he was called Dragon right now. Alternatively, maybe LTT/Rand is always called "Dragon" every turning. It's not outside the realms of possibility that the Wheel could make something like that happen, or that eventually it could be so corrupted it was "Unicorn" or "Hamster" instead, in which case in that turning the DO would say "DONE BY MY ANCIENT ENEMY, THE ONE CALLED HAMSTER."

09-10-2011, 06:59 PM
The DO probably just meant that he was called Dragon right now. Alternatively, maybe LTT/Rand is always called "Dragon" every turning. It's not outside the realms of possibility that the Wheel could make something like that happen, or that eventually it could be so corrupted it was "Unicorn" or "Hamster" instead, in which case in that turning the DO would say "DONE BY MY ANCIENT ENEMY, THE ONE CALLED HAMSTER."

There are some who call me...'Tim'.

09-10-2011, 10:53 PM
Use your hamster style, Choda Boy!

Zombie Sammael
09-11-2011, 07:48 AM
There are some who call me...'Tim'.

According to my "WOT is the whole of fantasy fiction in different turnings" theory, that would make the Killer Rabbit the Dark One.

09-11-2011, 08:27 AM
According to my "WOT is the whole of fantasy fiction in different turnings" theory, that would make the Killer Rabbit the Dark One.Bela is a rabbit in another Age? Makes sense, I guess.

Zombie Sammael
09-11-2011, 08:40 AM
Bela is a rabbit in another Age? Makes sense, I guess.

It's not like, in that particular turning, she could be a horse....

09-11-2011, 08:56 AM
It's not like, in that particular turning, she could be a horse....Point.

09-11-2011, 10:50 AM
Bela is a rabbit in another Age? Makes sense, I guess.

Whatever Nynaeve al'Meara decides... Bela is to be, Bela can be...

If Moghedien can turn Birgitte into a child, if Amys can turn herself into a snake, anything is possible. Imagination, Belief are keys to creating reality.

One of the lessor discussed narratives is Nynaeve al'Meara's of learning about the World of Dreams and what is truly possible. Nynaeve has had more teachers & interaction with others, than Egwene has had in the World of Dreams: Moghedien, Birgitte, Amys, Bair, Melaine, Egwene, Elayne, Lan, Rand, Rahvin, Siuan et al.

Zombie Sammael
09-11-2011, 10:55 AM
Whatever Nynaeve al'Meara decides... Bela is to be, Bela can be...

If Moghedien can turn Birgitte into a child, if Amys can turn herself into a snake, anything is possible. Imagination, Belief are keys to creating reality.

So are you saying that, if Nynaeve willed it, a swallow could carry a coconut in its beak to England? And more importantly, an African Swallow or a European Swallow?

09-11-2011, 03:19 PM
So are you saying that, if Nynaeve willed it, a swallow could carry a coconut in its beak to England? And more importantly, an African Swallow or a European Swallow?

Listen. A fahv ounce bird could no' carry a one-pound co'onut!

The Unreasoner
09-11-2011, 09:11 PM
I wonder what the relationship between the Dragon's luck (has enough for ten men, is minted like coin) and the Dark One's own luck is. If luck is seen as random events yielding favorable results, it is a result of threads being forced to a specific weaving. As ta'veren intensity fluctuates, luck may be like IQ with ta'veren as the 'genius cutoff'. Neither luck nor ta'veren needs to operate equally across different classes of events, in a constant perceived manner, or even consistently within a class. And so 'normal' luck is a distinct a real entity (and can be manipulated to same extent with the Power), but always works to perpetuate the pattern. The common level of luck may only be sufficient to alter events in the immediate area, and only perpetuate the thread (and its relative state) it is linked to. So a lucky small time gambler will be able to perpetuate his existence as a small time winner, but probably shouldn't trust a dice roll to get him out of Finnland. Ta'veren magnitude luck is also related to the ta'veren's thread, but a ta'veren thread has significance to many other threads, and its relative state incorporates this. The small time gambler is lucky, but really has minimal effect on most other threads, so the thread's relative state produces the definition: small time gambler. Mat's thread has a relative state affected by the vast number of threads whose relative states are largely dependent on the state of Mat's. His thread's relative state produces a corresponding definition of "Vital general of the light, liaison to the Dragon for the Empire, etc, etc...". Both Mat's luck (ta'veren level) and the small time gambler's luck (small time winner level) perpetuate their corresponding thread's relative state. Which is why Mat is frequently yanked all over the place, his thread's relative state is largely dependent on the actions he ultimately takes wherever he is yanked to. Mat, as he is defined by the relative state, is a general. So the Wheel will kick him into Rhuidean if it has to, and will keep him out of the columns, because Mat not doing those actions is no longer Mat, as far as the Wheel is concerned. And so even "favorable" outcomes in random events obtained by luck can be seen as undesirable (as is frequently the case with Mat), as "favorable" is concerned only with being favorable to "keeping the weaving of the thread to its current relative path".

By this logic, not only should Dark ta'veren not exist, but very lucky Darkfriends will be rare, unless very little of the Darfriend's thread's relative state is concerned with being a darkfriend. As such, 'lucky' evil will usually be effectively neutral, or even positive. This may even explain the incompetence of the Forsaken and their frustration with LTT's/RaT's luck. Any significant act by them against the Pattern would encounter extreme bad luck (or absence of luck), impeding success. Good "Bad" ideas may almost never occur, while the good guys get fortuitous light bulbs coming out their ears.

But then what is the Dark One's luck?
Myrdraal are said to have it (and seem to). Is there something in the Myrdraal's nature that allows them to better embody the Dark One? The Dark One's luck may be a sort of anti-luck: Luck serves to perpetuate an existing weaving (and current relative states), while anti-luck seeks to disrupt it. While destroying a thread certainly is one way to deviate a weaving, there are others too. Considering relative significance, Myrdraal are far more competent servants of the Shadow then the Forsaken are. And perhaps this all comes down to relative states again. Extreme selfishness makes a thread's state largely dependent on itself. This loop is resolved by generalizing it in the relative state, making the relative state largely dependent on successful perpetuation of weaves. The importance of perpetuation in the thread's identity generally prevents the Dark One's luck from being expressed. Since neither luck will significantly evident in actions by the Forsaken, they are fundamentally incompetent. And always will be, excluding special cases like Moridin.

09-12-2011, 04:42 AM
I don't think there is any real indication that Rand has the DO's own luck. However, there is this interview quote:
Jordan: That is a coincidence. When they say that Mat has the Dark One's own luck, he can get as mad as he wants to, but in a way it is true. It wasn't a gift from Lanfear, though.Of course, if my "Mat is the DR" theory is correct, this would indeed mean that the Dragon has the DO's own luck. :p

09-12-2011, 01:06 PM
Of course, if my "Mat is the DR" theory is correct, this would indeed mean that the Dragon has the DO's own luck. :p

Perhaps you might want to think about being more specific in your 'Mat is the DR" theory. Why you ask?

Because their a strong foreshadowing that Matrim Cauthon will take over Rand al'Thor role as the Dragon in public. Not that Matrim Cauthon is or believes himself to be the Dragon's soul.

In other words, a theory that "Mat is the DR" is likely to be only half right. Publicly the Dragon, however Privately not the Dragon.

One of first clues of Mat Cauthon role-playing is when he does this:

Rand glanced down, and had to grin. Mat Cauthon crouched beside the cart so Tam and Bran and Cenn could not see him, his wiry body contorted like a stork trying to bend itself double.

The Eye of the World, Chapter 2 "An Empty Road" -- Rand al'Thor point of view

Mat and Rand both have been identified as a 'Stork'.

She glanced back once from the doorway. A tall, broad-shouldered young man in a plain green coat among the High Lords in their silks and satin stripes, Rand looked like a stork among peacocks, yet there was something about him, a presence that said he commanded there by right. The Tairens recognized it, bending their stiff necks reluctantly. He thought probably they bowed just because he was the Dragon Reborn, and perhaps they thought so, too. But she had seen men, like Gareth Bryne, the Captain-Commander of her mother’s Guards, who could have dominated a room in rags, with no title and no one knowing their name. Rand might not know it, but he was such a man. He had not been when she first saw him, but he was now. She pulled the door shut behind her.

The Shadow Rising, Chapter 8 "Hard Heads" -- Elayne point of view; her thoughts

A scene somewhat similar to this scene, in terms of imagery & motifs, I do think will be in AMoL book.


In essence, Mat Cauthon is publicly is going to take Rand al'Thor place as the Dragon. Yet neither is truly the Dragon's soul. (Theory)

Rand al'Thor place in history, a history of the Third Age, is going to be omitted by almost everyone. Matrim Cauthon is going to end up taking most of the credit or blame, in the end. Not Rand, not even the true Dragon's soul--Valan Luca.

Matrim Cauthon will not ever speak of Rand al'Thor name in the near future. Why? A Promise given to Rand al'Thor upon reaching Toman's Head.

As she started around among the others, stopping briefly by each, Rand went to his friends. When he tried to straighten Mat, Mat jerked and stared at him, then grabbed Rand’s coat with both hands. “Rand, I’d never tell anyone about—about you. I wouldn’t betray you. You have to believe that!” He looked worse than ever, but Rand thought it was mostly fright.

“I do,” Rand said. He wondered what lives Mat had lived, and what he had done. He must have told someone, or he wouldn’t be so anxious about it. He could not hold it against him. Those had been other Mats, not this one. Besides, after some of the alternatives he had seen for himself . . . ”I believe you.

The Great Hunt, Chapter 37 "What Might Be" -- Rand al'Thor point of view; upon arriving at Toman's Head by Portal Stone.

Matrim Cauthon kept his Promise to Rand al'Thor, when Tuon asked about the Dragon Reborn and same with Aludra (KoD, Ch.8). Mat's a man to keep his Promises now.

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Other individuals with the 'Stork' motif include:

Gearan: a Da'Shain Aiel man cast out, with Luca.

Dustveils hid their faces, but he could make out who was who. Luca, with his shoulders half again as wide as anyone else’s; he liked to play tricks. Gearan, lanky as a stork and the best runner among the wagons.

The Shadow Rising, Chapter 25 "The Road to the Spear" -- Rand point of view through Lewin's eyes; in Rhuidean

Kiril Drapaneos: a Illianer nobleman who looks like a stork & plays cards.

Men moved around a number of small fires where water boiled for tea, among other things. For once, Tairens, Cairhienin and Illianers mingled. Not just the commoners. Semaradrid was sharing his saddle-flask with Gueyam, who wearily rubbed a hand over his bald head. Maraconn and Kiril Drapaneos, a stork of a man whose square-cut beard looked odd on his narrow face, were squatting on their heels near one of the fires. Playing cards, by the look of it!

The Path of Daggers, Chapter 23 "Fog of War, Storm of Battle" -- Rand al'Thor point of view

Ned Yarman: a Warder to Sareitha Tomares. A tall, broad-shouldered young man with bright blue eyes & corn-yellow hair curling to his shoulders. (Assumed dead)

Sareitha and her Warder left them after a few paces, the Brown murmuring an excuse about books she wanted to see in the library. The collection was not small, though nothing in comparison to the great libraries, and she spent hours there every day, frequently pulling up age-worn volumes she said were unknown elsewhere. Yarman heeled her as she glided off down a crossing hallway, a dark stocky swan drawing a strangely graceful stork in her wake. He still carried his disturbing cloak, carefully folded over one arm. Warders rarely let those out of their own hands for long. Kosaan’s likely was in his saddlebags.

Winter's Heart, Chapter 7 "The Streets of Caemlyn" -- Elayne point of view; with Birgitte

Varilin: Gray Ajah Sitter in the pre-Civil War White Tower & later the with Salidar Aes Sedai Rebels. She aligned with Romanda side. She was originally sent to Salidar by the Gray Ajah Head Clerk Serancha Colvine.

... Varilin, a red-haired stork of a woman and taller than most men, had taken her seat beside Kwamesa, too. Adjusting and readjusting her shawl restlessly, Varilin darted her eyes from Moria to Escaralde to Malind and back. ...

Crossroads of Twilight, Chapter 19 "Surprises" -- Egwene al'Vere point of view; her thoughts, while with Salidar Sitters

There's a parallel of the House of Matherin's livery colors of gray and blue, and the Ajah's livery colors of gray & blue. Varilin is a Gray. Varilin has previously pushed for negotiations, to end a war.

Mat Cauthon:

A good joke...

Rand opened his eyes to see his friends straightening up out of the knot of dicers. Mat Cauthon, long-limbed as a stork, wearing a half smile as if he saw something funny that no one else saw. Shaggy-haired Perrin Aybara, with heavy shoulders and thick arms from his work as a blacksmith’s apprentice. They both still wore their Two Rivers garb, plain and sturdy, but travel-worn.

Mat tossed the dice back into the semicircle as he stepped out, and one of the men called, “Here, southlander, you can’t quit while you’re winning.”

“Better than when I’m losing,” Mat said with a laugh.

The Great Hunt, Chapter 3 "Friends and Enemies" -- Rand al'Thor point of view, in Fal Dara

Yarin Maeldan

Second of the Spray. Where ever Bayle Domon send this ship the Spray and the rest of his fleet to, Yarin Maeldan is the one in command now.

While he was sitting there worrying, Yarin Maeldan, his brooding, stork-like second on Spray, came into the Badger with his brows pulled down to his long nose and stood over the captain’s table. “Carn’s dead, Captain.”

Domon stared at him, frowning. Three others of his men had already been killed, one each time he refused a commission that would take him east. The magistrates had done nothing; the streets were dangerous at night, they said, and sailors a rough and quarrelsome lot. Magistrates seldom troubled themselves with what happened in the Perfumed Quarter, as long as no respectable citizens were injured.

“But this time I did accept them,” he muttered.

“ ’Tisn’t all, Captain,” Yarin said. “They worked Carn with knives, like they wanted him to tell them something. And some more men tried to sneak aboard Spray not an hour gone. The dock watch ran them off. Third time in ten days, and I never knew wharf rats to be so persistent. They like to let an alarm die down before they try again. And somebody tossed my room at the Silver Dolphin last night. Took some silver, so I’d think it was thieves, but they left that belt buckle of mine, the one set with garnets and moonstones, lying right out in plain sight. What’s going on, Captain? The men are afraid, and I’m a little nervous myself.”

The Great Hunt, Chapter 9 "Leavetakings" -- Bayle Domon point of view; with Yarin Maeldan, in Illian

Lots of imagery & metaphors tied up in this above short scene including: stork, spray, knife/dagger, silver, dolphins, rats, lack of justice, flowers, moonstones, garnets, sailors, captain, badger, thieves, finder weave placed on a metal belt (implied).

An Omen about Storks?

Cenn Buie's omen of worst to come:

Bran harrumphed. “I could wish somebody wanted to talk about something besides the weather. Everyone complains about it, and folk who should know better expect me to set it right. I’ve just spent twenty minutes explaining to Mistress al’Donel that I can do nothing about the storks. Though what she expected me to do . . . ” He shook his head.

“An ill omen,” a scratchy voice announced, “no storks nesting on the rooftops at Bel Tine.” Cenn Buie, as gnarled and dark as an old root, marched up to Tam and Bran and leaned on his walking staff, near as tall as he was and just as gnarled. He tried to fix both men at once with a beady eye. “There’s worse to come, you mark my words.”

“Have you become a soothsayer, then, interpreting omens?” Tam asked dryly. “Or do you listen to the wind, like a Wisdom? There’s certainly enough of it. Some originating not far from here.”

“Mock if you will,” Cenn muttered, “but if it doesn’t warm enough for crops to sprout soon, more than one root cellar will come up empty before there’s a harvest. By next winter there may be nothing left alive in the Two Rivers but wolves and ravens . If it is next winter at all. Maybe it will still be this winter.”

The Eye of the World, Chapter 1 "An Empty Road" -- Rand al'Thor point of view; with Tam al'Thor, Cenn Buie, Bran al'Vere