|Memories of Ice|
|The Spark and the Ashes|
|Chapter 1||Chapter 2|
|Chapter 3||Chapter 4|
|Chapter 5||Chapter 6|
|Chapter 7||Chapter 8|
|Chapter 9||Chapter 10|
|Chapter 11||Chapter 12|
|Chapter 14||Chapter 15|
|Chapter 16||Chapter 17|
|Chapter 18||Chapter 19|
|Memories of Ice|
|Chapter 21||Chapter 22|
|Chapter 23||Chapter 24|
There were dark surprises that day.The Year of the Gathering
North of Capustan
Kruppe and Silverfox are riding away from the camp towards the area where the Second Gathering of the T'lan Imass will take place and are being followed by the two nameless marines and the T'lan Ay. They stop on a low hill and the T'lan Imass rise from the dust in their tens of thousands. Kruppe feels something in the air he can only guess is despair. Frozen between life and death for so long, he thinks, the T'lan Imass retain nothing of their past lives but "memories of ice".
Pran Chole comes forward, telling Silverfox he stood with K'rul during her birth. She asks if that makes him her father, and angrily accuses him of abandoning her. As Pran Chole lowers himself in guilt and despair, another Bonecaster of the Kron T'lan Imass comes forward, Okral Lom, who tells her that her rage is misplaced: if anyone could be considered her father, it would be Onos T'oolan whose isolation caused changes to his Tellann warren, which influenced her birth. Tool is slowly making his way to the gathering with a secret desire, but Okral Lom will not tell her what it is.
Two more Bonecasters come forward, Ay Estos and Olar Ethil, who tell her that the bulk of the Logros T'lan Imass forces are hunting renegade T'lan Imass who have committed crimes. Logros himself himself commanded Olar Ethil to search for the four remaining nations of T'lan Imass: the Bentract, who are trapped on the continent of Jacuruku, the Ifayle, Orshayn, and Kerluhm, all of whom seem to be missing and likely no longer exist.Kellanved, upon claiming the First Throne, commanded Logros to find them. When Kellanved ascended, he didn't yield the First Throne, leaving the T'lan Imass directionless, distracted by the presence of Jaghut in the Jhag Odhan (hence their abandoning the Malazan Empire during Laseen's first crucial years).
Silverfox asks Pran Chole if any Jaghut are left. Pran Chole says there is one at the center of the deeds of the Pannion Seer. Kruppe interrupts, telling Silverfox that what the T'lan Imass want is not an enemy to fight, but an end to their eternal limbo. In essence, they want to die. Silverfox is shocked by this, and tells the T'lan Imass that she belongs with them as their first mortal child. She doesn't want to be abandoned again. Pran Chole and the rest of the T'lan Imass all drop to their knees, pleading for release. Kruppe assures her that the Jaghut pose no threat, even if a Tyrant were to rise, and begs her to "redeem them" and give them peace. Silverfox says no, and the T'lan Ay all join in a sorrowful howl.
West of Capustan
Korlat and Whiskeyjack have made up after their earlier misunderstanding and stand before the crowd of Tenescowri with Anaster and the Women of the Dead Seed at their head. The Women open up warrens that cause the Malazans to feel an irrational fear, but none of the soldiers break. The Tenescowri prepare to charge, but Anomander Rake appears in his dragon form. He snatches Anaster out of his saddle, but flings him away, staggering as if poisoned. Rake recovers, and blasts the Tenescowri and the women with Kurald Galain, which is enough to cause the Tenescowri to surrender. Rake sembles back into his Tiste Andii form, and draws Dragnipur in order to kill the Women of the Dead Seed. Whiskeyjack intercepts, saying that Dragnipur is too harsh a sentence for these women so afflicted by madness. Rake says that Whiskeyjack must either kill them himself or allow Rake to do so, as the women are recovering. Whiskeyjack turns and executes the Women as they stumble incoherently from Rake's assault. Whiskeyjack is stricken to see that the Malazan Army watched him do this. Rake and Whiskeyjack talk about the weight of taking lives, and Whiskeyjack thinks to himself how no one could possibly bear the burden that Rake chose when he took on Dragnipur. The two go to meet Anaster.
Korlat and the Tiste Andii have surrounded Anaster, who has lost an eye in the conflict. Rake asks what should be done with him, and Anaster, suddenly afraid, asks to be killed. Anaster says that Itkovian wants his soul, and begs Rake to kill him. When Rake suggests they meet Itkovian, Anaster tries to kill himself, but fails. He crumples to the ground, weeping.
Whiskeyjack and Dujek discuss military procedures when it comes to executions, and Korlat approaches them. She tells them that Anaster figured this final attack would see him and the Tenescowri killed, an act of mercy to his mind. Korlat tries to comfort Whiskeyjack, saying that the Women of the Dead seed were powerful mages, and would have unleashed destruction had he not killed them. Whiskeyjack is still afraid to face his army, but Korlat tells him he has never commanded more respect. His army would follow him to the abyss if he asked, she says, which scares Whiskeyjack most of all. They talk about how Laseen probably felt she could handle Dujek as a High Fist, but could not handle Whiskeyjack, and so had Whiskeyjack demoted. Whiskeyjack comes to the horrifying conclusion that the destruction of the Bridgeburners at Pale was just a botched attempt to have him assassinated. Korlat warns him to be careful who he trusts.
Coll and Murillio talk about the day's events. They realize that the Mhybe has been all but forgotten, her usefulness at an end. Sore at the injustice of this, they make a plan to take her away from the army once they reach Capustan, perhaps finding a priest who might allow her some final dignity before she dies.
The Mhybe is dreaming once again that she is being chased by wolves. This time, however, she loses them in a dense forest, where she cuts her cheek on an antler. She finds a cavern, and crawls inside of it, hoping she is moving closer to her death. A man calls to her from within the cave, and when she identifies herself as "a mother", he laughs. He seems to think she's someone else, calling her "Seer", accusing her of trying to trick him. The Mhybe doesn't fully understand his words, as he talks about Omtose Phellack and seeing a god of winter, a wolf, in his reflection.
The Mhybe tries to convince him she is not who he thinks, but he continues, calling her tactics tricks to overthrow his mind. He says that a wolf resides in this dream world, and the Seer's mother won't go near. He talks about the mother, how she has memories of children who loved her and children who betrayed her, nearly a lifetime imprisoned and in pain, and an unexpected release when the Seer arrived. Finding all her children dead, and her city destroyed, she turned to the Seer. She used his power to reanimate her children, but the undead revenants drove her insane, allowing the Seer to usurp her. They speak on how love between mother and child is like a curse, when a distant howl is heard. The man says it is his mate, and he gives an answering howl which cause the Mhybe to scream.
In the Mhybe's wagon, Coll and Murillio hear her bloodcurdling scream, and notice that a cut has appeared on her face. They agree to move the wagon to the front of the line.