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DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

Return home (Drea)


The Don

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"Oh I have seen stark Tarwin's Gap,

and Trolloc's raving horde.

I have stood fore the Halfman's charge,

and walked on death's cold borde.

But a winsome lass, she waits for me,

for a dance and a kiss 'neath the apple tree..."

 

Sitting on his horse, Jaem started becoming dizzy, bobbing up and down, side to side. He stopped humming the song when he noticed himself smiling. Carefully, without spilling, he brought his flask of brandy back to his lips. The tiny village of Deven Ride lay on all sides of him now. "What a flaming hole." He laughed to himself. He remembered when it seemed like a sprawling community.

 

Eyes were now following him down the road. The older folks knew him, and many of the younger. He had been gone almost a decade, but you didn't forget a face in the Two Rivers. "What are you all bloody staring at?" He barked. "Never seen a flaming man on a horse?" Women were covering children's ears. Jaem barked a laugh and took another drink out of his flask.

 

All the sudden he was on the ground. Wobbling he got to his feet, and after a few attempts managed to pull out his sword. The bloody thing needed oiling. "Ok. Who did that? I'll have your bloody ears, burn you!" The old bumpkins backed off, knowing what was best for them.

 

"Jaem Caran, you behave!" old Thea al'Dain decided to get into the mix. "If you're going to bring that outlander rudeness here, you may as well just leave now!"

 

Sheathing his sword Jaem laughed again. "Pleasant as always, Mistress al'Dain. What are you all staring at? I'm not a bloody Trolloc." He noticed he had his arms out, with the left missing the hand. "Ah that. Darkfriends. Bad buisness, those. But I'm alive to tell the tale, not him, eh." He patted a young boy on the shoulder. "Battles are bad enough, but killing a man face to face who you had shared a mug of ale with, bad buisness." The boy backed away from him and Jaem sighed in rememberance, taking another drink of brandy. "Ah, but you boys don't want to hear about that, eh? Great cities and battles in the Blight. I've seen em all. Trollocs and Fades and Whitecloaks and Seanchan beasts." He nudged another boy with his elbow, "Women."

 

"You will stop that talk right now Jaem Caran or I'll..."

 

"Or you'll what? Take away everything I love? Take my other hand?" He sneered bitterly, "What can you do to me that the Creator hasn't already done?"

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The morning sun shone bright and harsh already and Drea’s hand shaded her eyes as she rode into town. Devin’s Ride was the reporting spot for a sentry and Drea actually found time during her week to go instead of sending someone else to do it. Laris Malohn rode behind her, an apprentice to narrow down some of Drea’s tedious work. They were approaching another battle and the Commander needed her time just as much as the scouts did.

 

A crowd was gathered just outside the Inn where they’d meet Bagwell and Drea held out a hand to slow Laris down. The man in the middle of the crowd suddenly fell off his horse, obviously drunk, and started shouting at the others, drawing his poor excuse of a sword. Drea and Laris dismounted and quietly approached the crowd. She lifted her cloak hood onto her head; Laris did the same, and watched in complete shock. Drea’s face went white and she leaned back on the scout behind her for support.

 

From the back of the crowd, Drea stared at the man she thought was dead. The man she first loved before any other was standing not ten feet away from her, alive and well. Perhaps “well” was an overstatement. His left hand was gone, one leg seemed to cause him to limp and he was obviously drunk, his beard hadn’t been trimmed in what could have been weeks and his clothes were torn and ratty. Not that a missing hand or bum leg was shocking—she’s seen men with worse injuries than that—what shocked her was his presence. It’d been five years since she’s seen him and all she could do was stare. Drea was in civilian clothes, something Jaem might never have seen her in. Their time together was before her kidnapping, before Drea became laid back—well, “laid back” was more like it really. Before, Drea had been to the book, always wearing her uniform and throwing a fit when it was dirtied. She hoped he didn’t recognize her.

 

The fool man was now sputtering tales about Trolloc’s and Seanchan to either scare the children or impress the adults, Drea couldn’t figure out which.

 

“You will stop that talk right now, Jaem Caran or I’ll-” the words were out of her mouth before she knew it but she suppressed the shock even as the villagers stared at her too. Those in front of her turned around to gape, at what she didn’t know. Mistress al’Dain had already condemned him, all she did was threaten. Where the difference was, Drea didn’t know. But they turned to stare regardless.

 

“Or you’ll what? Take away everything I love? Take my other hand? What can you do to me that the Creator hasn’t already done?” he sneered.

 

Drea’s eyes met his defiantly, even though her knees were shaking in her brown trousers and her heart thudded against her chest under her blue coat. She prayed he couldn’t hear it. With shaking hands, she lifted her hood off her head and let it fall down her back, her eyes never leaving his. She tried to hide the sadness in her eyes but wasn’t very successful. What had he become?

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Jaem turned to the hooded person, almost falling over in the process. Bloody clothes don't fit right. He almost fell again when she lowered her hood... that had to be the drink. In an almost sobering moment he stared into the eyes of his long lost love. Somehow the thought of seeing her with the rest of the Band never crossed his mind. It was more than he deserved to be able to see her. Suddenly coming back to the Two Rivers didn't seem like the great idea he had in his head. His son must be with her somewhere, probably at this "Citadel" he had heard about in Watch Hill.

 

As soon as it came, the moment was gone. Putting on what he figured was his best grin, he nodded his head to her. By her expression, it wasn't the grin he was trying for. "Well, well, well. Captain Raylin. How wonderful that you would be the one to meet me for Ehlana. I hope she is well, and my son also." She looked as if she wanted to sick up. He couldn't look that bad! Unconciously he took another drink, scrubbing his dirty left forearm over his face to get the sweat off. At second glance, her face was plainly pained, even to him. Suddenly he realized something... "Ehlana's dead?... and..." slowly, she nodded, making his worst thought of the last five years a confimerd reality. She seemed to make a move to comfort him.

 

His face contorted in rage as he shoved her hand away. Oddly sadness never crossed his mind. Not since he had been left for dead, not now. Pain and hate and anger were all he had felt since that day. The Dark One and the Creator were one in the same, they had to be. What else but an evil being could let these things happen to him? Burn the Creator for all of it! Burn the Creator and burn the Light!

 

He had not noticed that he had shouted the last until dozens of shocked faces stared back at him. His parents were two of them, his father holding his fainting mother. He didn't care. Let them hate him. It was their bloody fault he was born.

 

He swallowed all of it. Just as he had done the past five years. He quickly shoved all emotions to the back of his mind. In all that time he had never shed a tear, and he would not now. He would face it like a man, on his feet. Clearing his throat, he smiled again at Drea. "Anyways... I'll be wanting to meet the new Commander as soon as possible."

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Light, why did everything revolve around her son lately? Miria thinking she’s pregnant then her escapade with Renalie. Jaem’s return just seemed to top the cake off! If she hadn’t found time to mourn before, she certainly had enough opportunities lately.

 

Drea stared at Jaem openly for a moment. He wanted her to take him where? Then again, where else would he go? He obviously didn’t fit in at home. Even his own family seemed to turn him away—at least Drea assumed the old man who looked similar to Jaem was his father, and the woman crying on his shoulder was then his mother. She looked back and forth from Laris to Jaem and back again. Light, the last thing she needed was to travel alone with this man. It was a half day’s trip. But someone needed to be here when Bagwell returned.

 

“Go, Captain. It’s okay, I’ll talk to Bagwell.” Laris said comfortingly. Drea looked to Laris with sharp eyes. Didn’t she get it? Drea didn’t want to take Jaem back to the band. She finally likes who she is, Jaem being alive only messes the whole thing up.

 

“Thank you, Laris.” Drea murmured through clenched teeth then turned back to the man who was stumbling around, holding his horse’s reigns tightly. “This way, Jaem.”

 

They rode for a few hours in complete silence. He only hummed a tune or mumbled to himself behind her. What he was saying, she didn’t care. Drea’s goal was to keep the tears from falling for as long as possible. She was succeeding so far.

 

“I’m sorry about your son.” She said quietly and the humming stopped abruptly. “Our son. He- he was born early. Too early. Nothing could have been done. It wasn’t anyone’s fault.” She kept it short. Was she mad at him or intimidated by him? Who hurt who more? It didn’t matter anymore. He was alive and-and- he was alive.

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Jaem quietly followed Xandrea, hopping up on his horse. One day he would have to name his black steed. He was the only thing in the world Jaem really still cared for, including himself. Those long days when he was teaching the sword for coin, when he barely ate enough to keep himself alive, his horse was always well fed. Before he bought brandy or gambled it away, his horse was fed until he could eat no more. Even nights where he had not bathed, his horse was always at least rubbed down. Once he had won two gold marks from a wealthy smuggler in Illian, and he had bought the horse a new saddle and shoes before spending the rest in a tavern. Maybe he never named him for the simple fact that if he did, it would show he cared too much and the flaming Creator would take that from him as well.

 

They rode for hours without saying a word. He remembered Drea being much better company. Jaem caught himself singing again. Jak o' the Shadows. Coming home from Tarwin's Gap. All songs of war. He never had the desire to learn any other kind. He was a soldier to the marrow. So was Ehlana. It was a shame, really, that she had been taken. A competant Commander and a good friend... as much as the last counted for. He hadn't had a friend in the world since he had left the Band. And good riddance! Friends and lovers were liabilities. "The best flaming thing I can do for someone is to stay out of their bloody lives. I'm like a goat-kissing plague, everything I touch gets ruined." Even his blood was a tainted poison.

 

As if his thought was read, Drea finally spoke. “I’m sorry about your son. Our son. He- he was born early. Too early. Nothing could have been done. It wasn’t anyone’s fault.”

 

"Oh, it was bloody well someones fault." Jaem's laugh held more than a hint of mirth. "No son of mine will be let to live. Flaming Shai'tan has it out for me." his horse staggered as the world seemed to lurch. "Yeah, notice me, you flaming son of a goat. Jaem Caran is alive and in the bloody Two Rivers again, and I'm flaming coming after you." He laughed defiantly at the sky, that was for the Creator too. "Anyways, the man who attacked me was a Darkfriend, you know. Sh..." Drea gave him a warning look that he shrugged off. "Fine... the Dark One bloody sent a blademaster to specifically kill me. Or one of the Forsaken did, at least. Whatever I did to catch that kind of attention I don't kn..." before he could finish, he was sent flying to the ground for the second time today.

 

He dusted himself off and stood up to see his horse lying on the ground, his front right leg caught in a rabbit hole snapped forward. Of course. Name the Dark One. Quietly, he took out his sword and put the poor thing out of its misery. If only someone was humane enough to do the same for Jaem Caran. Suddenly he laughed. He laughed as if it was the richest joke in the world. Soon he realized he wasn't laughing at all. The dirt on his face became mud with tears. He didn't even try to stop, no matter that Drea was there. Five years of forgotten emotions. Five years of pain, and the last five hours brought a thousandfold more. He cried until he had no tears left in him, and the sun was most of the way down over the mountains.

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Drea sighed irritably when she noticed Jaem had started crying. She didn’t blame him though; she was struggling to hold her own tears back but for different reasons. Light, if she had enough strength to hold in her emotions, he could at least wait until he was alone in his rooms, couldn’t he? Then again, it was a pretty horse, obviously well taken care of.

 

But the real reason she sighed was because she knew what she had to do. Dismounting, Drea approached Jaem cautiously and put a hand on his shoulder. Okay, now what? There there? It’s alright? Suck it up and be a man? That’s what you get for naming the bloody Dark One? Drea was at a loss for words. She just looked at him with sadness and bit her lower lip; another bad habit she thought was gone.

 

“I’m sorry, Jaem.” That was it? Should she say more? Do more? Like what? Drea’s nose wrinkled slightly at the thought of hugging him. For starters, he smelled, badly. And second of all, it was too much. Sometimes who you were, Drea, is a lot better than who you are. Her arms wrapped around his broad shoulders and she hugged him, if a bit awkwardly.

 

“I think I know who tried to kill you. They tried to kill me too.” She let go of him. That was plenty long enough. “Two years ago I was kidnapped. I killed one guy and got away, but the Band had already moved on. Anyway, I’m sorry for the hardships you’ve gone through. Just know you’re not alone. We’ve hurt too.” Drea looked at the dying horse briefly. “Leave him. I’ll send scouts in the morning to take care of it. We better be on the move again. We still have another couple hours before we arrive at the Citadel, maybe longer now that one of us will be walking.” Drea motioned for Jaem to ride her horse and started on their way again. It would get dark soon, and the last thing she wanted was to have to stop for the night. She’d walk until her legs fell off if that’s what it took to get them back sooner.

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The rest of the way to the Citadel was long and silent. The small comforts Drea had given him did nothing but remind him of what a flaming baffoon he was. Still, it felt as if a weight had been lifted off his shoulders. He let himself be sad again, he let himself mourn... he let himself be human.

 

How long had it been since he had cried? Six years? Seven? It was after a battle with the Whitecloaks, after he had first killed a man. He had thought himself some flaming bloody hero out of a story because he had led men into the Blight and killed Trollocs and Fades. Killing men was different, though. They were sons and brothers, sometimes fathers. They weren't doing anything but their duty, not following the Dark One. They just had the poor luck of going against someone just a little bit better. It was that night that he had learned the value of human life, people didn't kill people in the Two Rivers. That was why the villagers were looking at him like a Trolloc. No, if Jaem Caran was coming from one side of them and a Trolloc from another, they'd run to the Trolloc. Where had he lost that value?

 

Burn it, but he was depressed. He tried taking another drink, but the flask was empty. He looked down to Drea, who was walking silently beside him. What a bloody loser I am! Breaking down and crying in front of a woman, saying nothing when she offered up her horse. She's holding up just fine, and look at me. Burn the Creator for making me weak!

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Drea kept walking. She could feel Jaem's eyes on her, but she didn't dare to look. She was scared of what his eyes would tell her, and visa versa. Though her heart thumped loudly in her chest from nervousness, she was relieved and saddened at the same time. Light! She felt like she was with child again, all those emotions going through her at the same time! Instinctively, Drea's arm cradled her stomach-a side effect of Mateo's memory. Despite Jaem's fall backs, it was still good to see him. She always thought him a handsome man, many women did, and Drea could still see hints of his old self though the dirt, grime and scars. Whatever happened to him certainly hardened his features as well as his personality, but she still remembered him as the same old Jaem Caran; charming, funny, lucky, strong and brave, a real hero in the Band. Thousands would be excited to see him, and he acted as if he didn't care more than a blink of an eye.

 

Ah, and his eyes. Those deep dark pools that first caught Drea's attention one rainy night as a Banner Captain. Rain, mud and hair all caught up in front of her own eyes. Those same eyes intimidated her now, and kept her from making full eyecontact. The same eyes she'd dream about falling into many nights in the past now right in front of her and she couldn't bare to meet them.

 

The same eyes could tell her exactly what she didn't want to see. The could return her affection, return her longing. But she knew they wouldn't. Jaem had been hardened so badly, she wasn't sure he loved anything but that bloody horse anymore. She wasn't sure he could love anything else. But he could also reject her with those eyes worse than his death had. He could turn around and hate her for losing their child.

 

The Citadel loomed in the distance, towers half finished, piles of brick and cinderblocks organized in ways Drea didn't understand. Ogier labored with sweat on their brows and backs. Soldiers trained in the yards and civilians rushed from one shop to another running daily tasks. Through the front gates, Drea saw few faces she recognized right away, but that didn't mean they didn't know Jaem. Drea knew few people in other divisions, especially since she'd been missing, but by their stares, some knew Jaem. The rumors would spread like wild fire and Drea winced at what her presence with him would cause some to say. Chances are, Mehrin would know of their arrival faster than they could get there themselves.

 

"There are a few things you need to know before we go inside." Drea finally said before they were to walk into Mehrin's offices. "Mehrin Deathwatch of the Infantry is now Commander. He took over after Cabroci Ramzael went missing, who took over after Ehlana was captured. Never call him Commander, my Lord, Sir, or anything except Mehrin." Drea walked swiftly to the door of Mehrin's office and nodded to the guard outside. She was more nervous now than she was when alone with Jaem. Stopping once more before opening the door, Drea turned and looked back at him, a head or so taller than she. "Don't be cocky. He hates cocky. The last thing you need is for Mehrin to not like you right now. Trust me." Did she tell Jaem that for his own good or for hers? Mehrin wasn't going to be happy about the man's return anyway, and for reasons beyond Jaem's understanding, at least for now.

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Deep in his own self pity, Jaem hardly heard what Drea was trying to tell him. "Like me... right. Is there anywhere I can wash up first?" From the look on her face, Drea would rather have him to the Commander and out of her sight as soon as possible. And who wouldn't? "I won't be long, I promise." He tried to make his voice as light as possible. Burn me, but I'm ruining her life all over again.

 

He didn't bother with heating any water, just poured it cold over himself and scrubbed the last few days of grime away. He shaved as well, no use going and looking like a beggar. As he got dressed, he caught a glimpse of himself in the mirror. He had the look of a man almost fourty years old rather than thirty. He looked utterly defeated. Instinctively, maybe because he was wearing his old uniform, he soldiered up. He straightened his back and stuck out his chest. The uniform was ill-fitting (he had lost a little in the chest and gained a bit in the stomach), but he looked like a soldier even still. Before leaving, he quickly took off the insignia of Captain General. He had a feeling not too many people around here would like him wearing that.

 

Buckling his sword to his hip, he went back out to meet Drea. It was a smaller blade than your average soldier carried. Just as long but quite a bit thinner. He had heared it called a Cutlass when he was training with the Warders. Light, but strong. With this, he could fend off most attacks from larger swords, yet move it at such great speed, there was little need to defend. He had picked it up in Tear, after he had realized his old sword was too heavy for use of a one handed man. This style of fighting also almost nullified his bum hip, using little engery and mostly eliminating all the twists and turns of the hips.

 

Jaem recognized quite a few people as he was being led to the Commander. Drogo and Modi were recruits with him. He had fought back to back with them once in Tarwin's Gap against a Myrrdraal. They had shared more than one mug of ale after, too. They now both bore the insignia of a Captain. That was good, they had earned it a hundred times over. Jaem was given all the awards and recognition, but the truth of it was, he was only one man. Without the likes of Drogo and Modi and a thousand others, most of which had fallen either under his command or after he left, Jaem Caran would be nothing.

 

Finally, he was led to a door. Looking at Xandrea, Jaem took a breath and knocked loudly once. "Enter."

 

Jaem walked in and stood in front of the desk. "Commander, Jaem Caran reporting." He remembered hearing something about not being proper with the man, but if Drea was that comfortable with the man, that was all well and good, this man had never met Jaem Caran. Or had he. "I remember you." Jaem barked a laugh. "Seems you've come up in the world since the Seanchan, eh? Oh... right.... uhh... so I've been thinking. Seeing as how everyone seemed to think I was killed already, that maybe I could re-enlist and make a fresh start, because well... I'm not dead. I'd like to return to the Cavalry, if thats possible."

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Despite the thick stone walls of his office and the heavy doors between him and the outside world, Mehrin could hear the hubbub of the Citadel outside. It sounded anxious, like something had happened. It was just too bad that he couldn't go out and find out what was causing it. "Currently, we have thirty casks of salt pork laid up in the cellars; we'll need more than that to last the winter. Our stores of wheat and flour are a touch short, and there are insects in some of what we do have."

 

Mehrin shrugged and said, "Throw some barley and oats in with the flour and bugs, and nobody will know the difference. Just some extra crunch and protein." The supply officer didn't even smile. Some people just didn't have any sense of humor. Besides, Mehrin had only been half-kidding. "Make whatever purchases you need to in order to be prepared. Make sure to stock some of the preserved fruit, too." The man stood and left without anything another word. Good, he thought. Finally, some peace and quiet.

 

That lasted until the door opened, of course. Mehrin was still reading over the report when he heard the door, but didn't look up. Whoever it was would probably say their bit and be gone just as quickly. "Commander, Jaem Caran reporting."

 

"For the last time, don't call me tha-" Mehrin stopped midsentence and finally looked up at the man who had come back from the dead to stand in front of his desk. "I remember you. Seems you've come up in the world since the Seanchan, eh? Oh... right.... uhh... so I've been thinking. Seeing as how everyone seemed to think I was killed already, that maybe I could re-enlist and make a fresh start, because well... I'm not dead. I'd like to return to the Cavalry, if thats possible."

 

"Aye, and I remember you," Mehrin replied carefully. The man was hardened, scarred, and... maimed. Mehrin's brow furrowed as he noticed the other man's missing hand. "Jaem Caran," he said, a slow smile coming to his face, "you look awful." Mehrin remembered the man. He had been pointed out to him on many occasions before the battle with the Seanchan, and they had even found his body, from what Mehrin had been told. Of course, he and Drea had also been lovers once upon a time. She was standing behind him, a look that Mehrin couldn't place on her face. If he's here to take her from me... "I guess I'll have to have your stone removed from the Field of the Fallen, then. And as for you returning... When you disappeared five years ago, why didn't you return to us right away? Why now?"

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"Well, truth to tell, by the time I was well enough to move about more than a few hundred paces a day, the Band was long gone." Jaem shrugged. "I suppose I could have found you eventually, there were no shortage of rumors to tell where you were... but what use could I have been at the time?" Unconciously he rubbed the nub where his hand once was. "Why now? Well, I've come to accept my... condition. I relearned the sword with one hand nearly as I had been with two. I heard the Band was settling in my hometown and, well... here I am. I suppose I have some amends to make," he took a quick glance at Xandrea, Burn me, but how could I repay ruining someone's life twice? "maybe more than a few. But I see now this is where I belong.

 

"I may not be much use on the front lines, but I have the knowledge of a Blademaster and a General still in my head. I've fought Shadowspawn and Whitecloaks and Seanchan, I've dealt with those.... men in the black coats since I've left." He shivered. It wasn't fear of Asha'man, exactly, it was just... unnatural that a man should channel. It was the kind of shiver that, well that you'd have if you saw a man walking around with one hand. "I've trained in Tar Valon with the Warders. Just give me a horse and I swear on my life I'll lead the charge upon Shayol Ghul itself. The Shadow will tremble at the sound of our hooves and the sight of our banners." He noticed his fist was clenched. "Under your command, of course. I ahh... I don't mean to get so zealous... old habits, I suppose."

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Drea needed to relax. Ha! Around these two men, especially together, there was not such thing. Might as well try though. It was a long walk from the spot where Jaem killed his hors. Drea casually made her way to the corner of the office where a padded chair sat near a bookshelf. She grabbed a random book from the wall and put her booted feet on the table, reclining carelessly. She listened intently, but looked at neither man. Her part was done, but she wanted to hang around until the fireworks were over.

 

“He will, too, Mehrin.” Drea said over the book she pretended to read. The Adventures of Jorry Allgen. Judging by the colorful pictures and short sentences, one Mehrin had gotten for Renalie. “If there’s one thing this Jaem Caran has in common with the old one it’s his passion.” Light, was Mehrin frowning at her? She couldn’t tell from the corner of her eyes, and didn’t dare to look at him.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Passion... considering how close Drea and Jaem had been in the past, Mehrin wasn't entirely sure what she meant by that. Blood and bloody ashes, man! Back down! Nonetheless, he found himself glancing at Drea, trying to see what was going on behind those beautiful eyes of hers. Of course, it was hard not to laugh when he noticed what book she'd taken from the shelf. Mehrin had spent a little bit to purchase books that Renalie could read on her own, though Mehrin found himself occasionally wrangled into reading to her. One of those things that children had the ability to do, apparently. But that wasn't helping the current situation at all. "I think I can deal with zealous men. Might be a bit of an inspiration. Just don't let old habits give you any... ideas. I prefer not to be referred to by my rank, but that doesn't mean that I tolerate insolence or mutiny."

 

Mehrin allowed silence to reign for a moment as he examined the man again. His memory of Jaem Caran was not too clear, but the man that he remembered and the man that stood before him were two totally seperate beings. That one had seemed grander, almost larger than life. This Jaem looked more down-to-earth. Could be your memory being off, or it could be your different perspective on the world. You're no longer a private in the Infantry, you know. "So, what do I do with you?" Mehrin mused. Jaem could possibly still fight, but Mehrin didn't want to simply throw him into the middle of a battle, either. It could be a bad thing. "Okay, here's what we'll do. I'm going to readmit you to the Band with the rank of Banner Captain with the Cavalry. You are to report to Captain General Carnhain Stromblade, who will see to it that you are properly briefed. Talk to the requisitions officer, and he'll see that you get a horse, a uniform, or anything else you may need. I'll have the proper papers written up within the hour, and then you can sign your life away again."

 

Sitting back, Mehrin found himself wondering whether this was the best idea, but he quickly squelched the thoughts. He couldn't afford to question himself. "So, unless you have any questions, you're pretty much free to do what you will."

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Passion? What in the Pit of Doom was she seeing? Passion was not a part of Jaem Caran, not anymore. Then again, the thought of riding back into battle, the memory of the feeling of almost superhuman abilities when adrenaline pumped through his veins... yes... he could be passionate about that again.

 

"Mutiny is the last thing on my mind. The last bloody thing I need is to go from looking after myself to thousands of flaming people. Just bloody point me where to charge and I'll go." He barked a laugh. Just the thought of having all those people depending on him for anything beyond a battle was ludacris. He had never been one for logistics or any of that nonsense that Commanders had to deal with. "Banner Captain sounds perfectly fine with me, just as long as I don't have any paperwork." As a Captain General, he hated that part. "Stromblade, eh? Doesn't sound familiar. I'll find him though." He gave a quick bow "By your leave sir... ma'am... you seem to have more to talk about that doesn't concern old Jaem Caran." He laughed again. Already pushing buttons Jaem? Blood and ashes, this time they're gonna kick me out. It feels good though, doesn't it? He was always on for a bit of fun. How long had had it been since he truely had fun? This might be a better idea than he thought. Time for a drink. But first he had to find General Stromblade. He left the room still smiling.

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