A Poor Pair of Heroes
While Rand, Verin, Ingtar and Loial mingle at Barthanes' party, Hurin tracks Fain and the Darkfriends to a Waygate, the last remnant of a destroyed stedding. Rand elects to open the Waygate to prove to Hurin that the trail is still trackable even through the blackness of the Ways; upon doing so, Machin Shin appears, actively trying to escape the Ways and kill Rand, Hurin, and Loial. As Rand fumbles with the Power, Loial crawls forward and manages to shut the Waygate.
"You saved us, Builder," Hurin had his back pressed against the wall and his voice was hoarse. ...
"I only found the leaf and put it back," Loial said, shrugging. "It seemed that if we could not get the Waygate closed, it would kill us. I am afraid I'm not a very good hero, Rand. I was so afraid I could hardly think."
"We were both afraid," Rand said. "We may be a poor pair of heroes, but we are what there is. It's a good thing Ingtar is with us."
Hurin, Loial and Rand, The Great Hunt, p. 402
Loial's honesty here is refreshing. Admitting his own fear, yet still managing to act decisively is a strong leadership quality. It wasn't a gamble, it was a calculated risk; the stakes were just immense - as losing probably meant death. Fighting through the fear, Loial finds success. There will always be reasons why things can't be done; many of them are based out of fear. As leaders, it's up to us to find the way through them to get that next level of success.