This is a theory I thought of while spending weeks compiling the myriad laws and customs of Aes Sedai.
Egwene has had a dream of her own impending execution by beheading:
Straps at waist and shoulder held her tightly to the block, and the headsman’s axe descended, but she knew that somewhere someone was running, and if they ran fast enough, the axe would stop. If not…Beheading is a punishment in the White Tower. According to White Tower law, treason is one crime that requires the headsman, as do crimes such as the “vileness” after the Aiel War (illegal gentling of men and murder of Aes Sedai).
- A Crown Of Swords, Unseen Eyes
"Well, what's one treason more or less? The Hall can put you on your knees from here to Tarmon Gai'don for penance, but they can only take your heads once."Elaida is about to meet Egwene again after some time. So far Elaida has been merciful to Egwene, despite Egwene's claim to be Amyrlin. Falsely claiming to be the Amyrlin is a crime for which stilling is mandatory:
- A Crown of Swords, Diamonds and Stars
“I look forward to seeing your neck stretched on the headsman’s block for treason,”
- Crossroads of Twilight, A Mark
"Any woman who falsely claims the title of Amyrlin Seat must be stilled."but since one “cannot refuse a summons to become Amyrlin” (Lord of Chaos, In The Hall of the Sitters) and further, Egwene was raised from the Accepted, who “can’t choose which sisters to obey” (Crossroads of Twilight, Prologue), Elaida was able to declare Egwene not at fault.
- A Crown of Swords, Prologue
However, since her kidnapping, Egwene has committed another treasonable offence, namely informing the rank-and-file Aes Sedai of the existence of the Thirteenth Depository (the secret histories of the Aes Sedai) and even their contents:
Access to those secret histories, hidden deep in the Tower library, was set out in a law that was itself secret, and revealing the existence of either records or law was treason.I think that during Egwene’s imminent attendance on Elaida, there will be an interruption either of sisters demanding an answer on the Thirteenth Depository, or Sitters or Ajah Heads to complain that the rank-and-file know about it and Egwene’s actions will be exposed. This will be a crime Elaida will not be able to shift away form Egwene; nor will she desire to, since Egwene’s aim is to incite the Aes Sedai to rise up and depose Elaida.
- A Crown of Swords, An Oath
Though, of course, assaulting the Amyrlin is also considered treason, so hopefully Egwene doesn’t lose her considerable self-control while she attends Elaida.
Probably only the arrival of the Seanchan will prevent the axe falling on Egwene.