The Wheel of Time - The Call of the Horn
The Kin is a group of female channelers who help runaways from the White Tower. None of these women were Aes Sedai, but having trained in the Tower they have some similar rules and are not exactly wilders. Rank among the Kin is determined by age, not strength in the Power. The thirteen oldest members in Ebou Dar comprise the Knitting Circle and are the ruling body of the Kin. The oldest of the Knitting Circle is known as the Eldest.
It was recently discovered that because the Kin do not use the Oath Rod, they live significantly longer lives than Aes Sedai. When the ages of The Kin were discovered, they were met with disbelief by many Aes Sedai.
Until revealed to them by Elayne after she was told by Vandene Namelle, the Kin believed their existence was unknown, but Aes Sedai actually used them to locate runaways. This way, the capture rate of women who fled the White Tower was significantly improved, catching 90% of all runaways.
Egwene al’Vere, the Amyrlin Seat, unveiled a plan while with the faction of Rebel Aes Sedai: that Aes Sedai who wish to retire could have the Three Oaths removed and be sent to the Kin. This would allow them to live out their greater remaining days in peace while tying The Kin to the White Tower, although it does mean that those who lived with The Kin must accept their rules and customs. So far this plan has not come into action and has been met with strong opposition in the Hall.