Jump to content

DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

A Fresh Start [attn MoN]


Arae Selidan
 Share

Recommended Posts

Megain looked up in awe at the towering heights of the White Tower.

 

"Light," she breathed. It was an exclamation of wonder rather than an oath.

 

She felt her heart soar. Here she was, on the threshold of Tar Valon, free of Cairhien, free of Daes Dae'mar, free of the feelings of sadness that she couldn't be the perfect heir her father wanted...

 

Teranne can be the next High Seat. She's welcome to it, Megain thought to herself, smiling slightly. I've found something better.

 

A fresh start. Just as she'd always wanted.

 

She walked up the steps to the White Tower and soon found herself inside. She looked around, eyes so wide they felt ready to pop out of her skull. Nobles and peasants alike walked the corridors, and seemed to bear it, something Megain had never seen before. Aes Sedai glided between them, their poise as much as their faces marking them out for what they were - channelers, wielders of the One Power, each one as serene and magnificent as any queen. Even the girls walking around in novice white seemed to Megain at the moment to be the true embodiment of splendour and radiance.

 

She looked around herself, feeling lost and smaller than she'd ever felt before.

 

Find the Mistress of Novices, she'd been told. Easier said than done, in her opinion. Still, she had time on her hands... maybe she could have a little look around while she waited.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"I'm sick of this!"

 

"Calm yourself Enia, you are doing fine."

 

"No I'm not!  I can't get it!  I just cannot do this!"

 

"Enia, you're perfectly capable.  If you weren't, you would not be here, now I would like you to focus.  Just try it one more time and we'll take a break.  Now, what is this?"

 

"Uh...."

 

"Come on, think about what else we've already done, what is left?"

 

"U?"

 

"Yes, U.  See?  You have it in you, its just a matter of practice and the letters will come naturally to you.  It will be the same with words, just remember that the more you learn the easier it is to learn.  Now go and take a break, go to the Dining Hall and have your midday meal.  Be sure to bring back something for me once you're done, and we'll continue with your lessons."

 

"Thank you Darienna Sedai!"

 

*    *      *      *      *

 

"Darienna Sedai?"

 

Looking up, Darienna frowned.  "What is it, Enia?"

 

"There is someone here waiting for you, wants to be tested I think."

 

"Send her in."

 

Sighing as she set aside her papers and dragged the ledger of Novices before her, Darienna looked up at the young girl who entered.  Short of stature, long dark hair, pale, a hint of blue about her dark eyes, she seemed quite petite.  If the cut of her clothing was indicative of her home, she was Cairhienin.  She'd already been tested, Darienna could see that her ability had already been tapped and Darienna doubted the girl was simply a wilder that had decided to come, though it wasn't something she could assume.

 

"Please, take a seat."  Gesturing to one of the two chairs on the other side of her desk, Darienna had already found the place in the ledger she was up to and had a quill in hand.  Waiting until the girl was seated, Darienna smiled slightly at her.  "Well, it seems you have already been tested, or perhaps you discovered your ability for yourself.  If you would, I need your name, age and place of origin for the records, and once you have told me those essentials you could tell me what transpired to lead you to this new life."

 

 

Darienna Ceradin

Mistress of Novices

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"I'm Megain Kestharin," Megain said hesitantly. "I'm fifteen."

 

She'd just spent an enjoyable morning adventuring the Tower, until a sister had caught her staring at one elaborate tapestry depicting the Trolloc Wars and whisked her along until she was deposited in front of this door. Off-balance did not describe it.

 

"I live - used to live in the City of Cairhien, in the manor of my father, Lord Daranos," she continued in a voice that steadily grew stronger and less hesitant. "I was going to be the High Seat of my House, but I was tested and found to be able to wield the Source. My father organised a ship to take me to Tar Valon, and... that's how I got here," she ended up lamely.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Noting down the essential bits of information on the paper before her, Darienna also listened to the extra details that the girl supplied.  Not that there was much in the way of detail, save that she was of noble blood from Cairhien and that she was tested before arriving, which Darienna had been able to see for herself before the girl had even spoken.  She traveled to Tar Valon along the River Erinin, and that was all that was offered.  Darienna wanted a bit more information than that, but it could wait until she was finished with her quill.

 

Setting it aside once down, Darienna got to her feet and stepped around the desk as she gestured for Megain to stand, much like she did most novices.  She needed to get a decent look at the girl's figure so she could pick out Novice dresses of the right size for the girl to wear.  Studying the girl for a moment as she complied, Darienna turned away and made her way into the side room where she kept the spare dresses as she called out from within.

 

"You didn't really tell me very much, Megain.  How about some more details, what was your trip on the boat like?  Did you part your family under good terms?  What was life with your family like?  Howabout you tell me a few more things about yourself?  Just five things off the top of your head, in addition to those other questions while I find your Novice uniform.  Since I'm going to be spending at least fifteen years overseeing your education, though it could be twice as many years before you become Aes Sedai, it may help for me to know a little more about you."

 

 

Darienna Ceradin

Mistress of Novices

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"Oh," Megain said, blushing. "Well, the boat trip was good. Better than I would have thought. Father gets seasick very easily, but I wasn't ill at all. Erm... There was a party for me, when I left home, but I think my father was glad to see the back of me. I was going to be High Seat one day, but... I'm not really good at... erm, I just can't really seem to get my head around the Game of Houses. I don't know. It just seems... silly to always expecting the worst of people... I don't know."She gave an embarrassed shrug. Guess that's another reason why Father didn't want me as High Seat, she thought. Unskilled at speaking to people of a higher station than myself...

 

She gave a timid smile. "He said that I should give my all to the Tower rather than assume control of House Kestharin. I'm not disappointed, really. I wasn't very good at all that stuff. Teranne was much better - that's my sister," she explained. "I've got three of them. We get on pretty well, but they didn't seem too happy during the party."

 

Her face fell as she said it. They had been a lot worse than just 'not happy'. The youngest had been wailing, and the second-youngest shouting at her to just go away and do her Light-forsaken witchcraft. Teranne was the only one who'd been on her side. Fortunately, with Teranne's help, Megain had managed to reconcile with her sisters, so she left home with at least moderately good relations with them. Thanks to Teranne.

 

She just wished she didn't suspect Teranne's support as being a move in Daes Dae'mar...

 

Megain turned from that thought, trying to think of happier things to tell Darienna Sedai, so that the Mistress of Novices didn't think her life was all doom and gloom.

 

Five things off the top of my head? Right, then. "I like learning," she said at last. "Learning about history was the only thing I could do - " Light! Can't I think of anything happy? Her life wasn't this bad. She was just making it sound worse than it was. Surely.

 

"I like dancing," she said. "My mother died when I was born - " Light! Where did that come from? Think of something happy, burn you! "I tend to wear too many layers of clothes at winter - " What on earth was coming out of her mouth now? " - and I'm really, really bad at talking about myself," she finally burst out, her face turning an even deeper shade of red as she heard the words coming out of her own mouth.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Emerging from the room filled with uniforms with a couple of white Novice dresses slung over her left arm, Darienna listened with a slight smile on her face as Megain spoke of herself.  She seemed quite unused to speaking of such things, or perhaps she was just rather nervous about the impression that she might be making.  She did not seem to have inherited the Cairhienin love of the game for that reason, a player would have been much more artful, and Darienna was quite certain that this was genuine.  The mention of the girl's mother made her smile falter, but what followed had her laughing as she walked over and rested her right hand on the girl's shoulder reassuringly.

 

"You did perfectly well, Megain.  And do not worry yourself, you haven't made a fool of yourself even if you feel like it.  I'm actually rather sorry I cannot mentor you myself, you seem like a lovely girl and one that I think will do well here."  Squeezing the girl's shoulder, Darienna handed her the dresses to take on her arm before turning her towards the door.  "Go on out, I just need to grab something from my desk and I'll be with you in a jiffy."

 

Walking behind her desk as Megain went outside, Darienna had to check a couple of drawers before she found her pipe.  Stuffing some tabac in it and lighting it up, Darienna emerged from her office puffing away merrily as she closed the door behind her.  Placing an arm around Megain's shoulders, she led her away, making sure the smoke didn't trail onto Megain as she did so as that would have been rather rude.

 

"I'll try and summarise things for you, though your mentor will be better able to explain them.  I'm the Mistress of Novices, I oversee every Novice and Accepted's education within the White Tower.  Novices who perform well may become Accepted, and Accepted in turn will become Aes Sedai if they qualify.  As a Novice, you will receive classes on a wide variety of subjects, including history, alongside the one power which you will be taught how to use.  Every single one of your teachers works with me to some degree to make sure you get the most out of every class.  You'll get whatever help you need so long as you are willing to work, we do not mind how quick or slow a person may be, but laziness is another matter altogether."

 

Reaching a flight of stairs, they proceeded up as Darienna continued.  "Now, we are going to find your mentor now.  Each Novice receives one, a person that they can go to if they want advice or help and someone who will look out for them.  Mentors are picked from the Aes Sedai and Accepted, in your case she is an Aes Sedai.  Estel Sedai will serve as your mentor and I believe she shall be a good one.  Do keep in mind though that she isn't the only person you may speak to, if you ever need anything you can always come and see me, and there will be other Sisters you may feel comfortable approaching in time as well."

 

"Now, I realise thats a bit to take in at once, so any questions so far?"

 

 

Darienna Ceradin

Mistress of Novices

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Megain smiled with relief as Darienna Sedai assured her that she hadn't made a fool of herself. Then, as they walked along the corridors, she listened avidly to what Darienna Sedai was saying. Free from the constraints of being the future High Seat, Megain had heaped all her hopes into her new life. She wanted to be Aes Sedai more than anything. And if she was going to do well, she had to learn to fit in...

 

"Now, I realise thats a bit to take in at once, so any questions so far?" the Mistress of Novices finished.

 

Megain shook her head and smiled. "None at all, Darienna Sedai."

 

As they continued down the corridor, she wondered what her new Mentor would be like. What Ajah would she be? What nationality? Most importantly - would Megain get on with her? Darienna Sedai seems to think so, but what if she is wrong?

 

Megain felt anticipation mounting. Soon she would know the answers to all these questions - and after that, her journey to Tar Valon would finally end and another would begin - the road to becoming an Aes Sedai.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Surprised at the lack of question, Darienna decided that Megain simply needed more time to process what she had already been told.  Besides, her mentor would be able to assist her in learning the many other ins and outs, what times meals were served and when class times were, the behaviour expected of a Novice and Accepted and many other facets of the life that Megain was about to embark upon.  They were things that she could learn in time, and Darienna had high hopes for the young girl and her potential to become an Aes Sedai.  Maybe she'd been a touch charmed by the girl's nature, open and honest if somewhat dazed and confused.

 

As they entered a section of the Tower that was dominated with blue, Darienna elaborated on their surroundings.  "This is the Blue Ajah Quarters, each of the seven Ajahs have a section of the Tower reserved for them and it is pervaded with the colour of that Ajah.  The Blue Sisters take up causes, anything each sister feels is important, and they will try to do their best to fix what they feel is a problem.  It is one of the less regimented Ajahs, unlike the Green who are organised into a military hierarchy which suits their nature as they are dedicated to helping the Borderlands maintain their borders in the face of the Blight and its denizens within."

 

"And here we are."  Stopping before a door, Darienna decided she may as well inform Megain who exactly was going to be taking her under wing before they met.  "Estel Sedai lives here.  Some would say she is not our finest sister, but it is precisely because of that I think you will do well with her.  She will take good care of you and make sure you settle in well, and she will listen to you."

 

"But, let us see whether she is in."  At that, Darienna sharply knocked on the door.

 

 

Darienna Ceradin

Mistress of Novices

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, despite the hell the first ten years of her career had cause her, Estel couldn't say they were completely unfruitful years.  A stack of Eyes and Ears messages littered her desk, curled from their journies from Arad Doman, Shienar and Saldaea.  The young Blue didn't hold for paranoia and crypts; the only thing written in code throughout all of her reports were the sections pertaining to rumours of male channellers.  ...drifted to the capital from a town on the border with Saldaea, a wolf apparantly attacked and killed an entire family last week.  It is unconfirmed whether or not the wolf was rabid, but this is the first I've heard of this...  Angelika Liones' spidery handwriting was scrawled neatly across the page, much like Estel's own reply- minus the tidiness of script. 

 

...I have heard no other reports of rabid wolves on the border, no need to trouble yourself... and by that she meant herself ... How goes court?

 

A knock on the door stopped the Domani mid pen-stroke, blotting the ink.  "Mother's milk in a flaming cup!"  If there was one language Estel was prodigious in, it was swearing.  Muttering a string of curses, each more vulgar than the last, she checked herself in the mirror on the way over.  She was not about to recieve yet another lecture on proper decorum from Serena or anyone else!  Quickly raking her fingers through paper-straight hair and satisfied with just the hint of rouge around her eyes and cheeks, Estel prepared herself for likely unwanted company.  With the exception of Rossa, Lillian and possibly Aeveryn, all company was unwanted.

 

Rather than a Blue, though, Darienna stood smiling.  Keeping her smile in place, the Blue internalised her wince.  This only meant one thing, a new mentee.  Estel's track record with teaching and mentees, in general, was well... not good.  Mind you, Dre seemed to be coming along decently but the fiasco with Aithne and Veronique before her, the Blue had isolated more Novices than she had helped.  One would think, with the sparkling example of Carise as her own beloved mentor, she would have picked something up.  However, success and talent were in short supply when set in conjunction with Estel's name.

 

As predicted, a girl stood a little ways back of Darienne, gaping around everywhere at once.  Perhaps it wouldn't be too much to hope that this one wouldn't be quite so unbalanced as the last.  In a moment's glance, Estel had her pegged as a lackwit Cairhienin who couldn't survive the uptight competition.  At least the child would be in good company.

 

"Darienna." Estel said inclining her head.  A pointed glance and raised eyebrow was the only question needed to illicit the girl's name.  "Welcome to the Tower Megain.  At the risk of being redundant, I'll repeast the name Darienna has no doubt already provided you with.  I am Estel Sedai."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Megain dropped a clumsy curtsy. She was unused to curtsying to anyone, but she'd never been that proud, no matter how much her father had tried to change her.

 

"Pleased to meet you, Estel Sedai," she said.

 

She was now more than even a little nervous. The first thing she'd heard as she'd come up to the door was a long string of oaths more vile than any she'd heard before. Light! If that was any indication of what Estel Sedai was like...

 

((OOC: sorry for the short post! I'm very busy at the mo ^^; ))

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"Well, thats the formalities observed."

 

Smiling at the pair, beneath it there was a certain mix of amusement and apprehension.  When she'd knocked on the door, she hadn't expected Estel to be cursing so loudly that it was clearly audible on the other side of the door.  She certainly had quite the vulgar vocabulary to put on display when she felt the need, it was perhaps a bit unfortunate that Megain had heard it but she was going to sooner or later.  At least there would be no illusions now.

 

But Darienna was still quite sure that Estel would do well, Estel just needed the chances to prove herself and if nothing else, Darienna was certain that Estel would take care of her mentees.  She might not have always enjoyed success, but a person could not learn if they did not have the opportunity, and it was as much for the benefit of the mentor as the mentee.  Much like her own role, her students taught her as much as she taught them, she never ceased to be a student herself as she gained new insights.

 

"Estel, I will leave Megain in your care.  I've already told Megain here that I am leaving her in good care, don't go making a liar of me."  There was a warmth rather than a sarcasm in her tone, something that carried as Darienna turned from the Blue Sister to the new Novice.  Reaching over and clasping the girl's arm, Darienna was still smiling with the pipe in her mouth as she said.  "Enjoy today and listen well to what your mentor has to say to you.  Tomorrow you will begin your training."

 

At that, Darienna squeezed the girl's arm reassuringly and turned away, leaving the pair to get to know one another.

 

 

Darienna Ceradin

Mistress of Novices

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It took a great deal of Estel's limited self control to keep her face perfectly smooth while Darienna practically insulted her in front of her new mentee.  Well, not so much insulted as insinuated- but that hardly mattered!  Ushering the girl into her rooms and the Mistress of Novices parted, the Blue sneered down the hall at her.  It was well-known fact among Aes Sedai that Estel was incompetent, what right did the woman have to spread that around the Novices and Accepted?  Light, now how was she supposed to teaach her mentee without seeming a hypocrite, being incompetent in every subject.  Burn Darienna!

 

"Tea?" she asked, betraying irritation in her voice.  Throwing a few leaves in the pot and momentarily embracing saidar to heat the kettle, Estel sat it down to steep, taking a seat in her usual armchair and gesturing for Megain to do the same.  "Cairhienin."  It was not a question.  The Domani's intelligence came into question often despite her noble upbringing.  Basics were a cake walk, it was every else that obeyed as quickly as most mules.  "Though not much used to Daes Dae'mar, I presume?  Light, how I hate that Game." a small smile twitched the corner of her mouth- closer to a smirk, really.

 

"You've already got my name and, no doubt, heritage, so what will it be?  You tell me something, I'll try and do the same in return.  No promises," she winced "some thing you really don't want to know and I really don't want to tell you."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The sound of the door closing had the ominous ring of a dungeon door closing. Megain looked nervously at her new mentor, wondering what would happen next. She couldn't imagine ever connecting with this beautiful and imposing Domani, who was so fluent in common curses. The feeling mounted when her mentor snapped out a brief and irritated query of "Tea?" to which Megain could only squeak, "Yes please, Estel Sedai!"

 

However, when Estel Sedai voiced her dislike of Daes Dae'mar, Megain relaxed slightly. Her mentor obviously disliked the Great Game. Maybe there is a common ground between the two of us after all. She hadn't admitted to herself how much she was worried that her inabilities in Daes Dae'mar would be a barrier to her becoming Aes Sedai.

 

"I'm used to Daes Dae'mar, Estel Sedai," she said in answer to her mentor's questions. "I'm just not that good at it." She gave a weak smile. "My father tried to train me to succeed him as High Seat, but he never quite managed it."

 

"I have three half-sisters," she continued. "I'm the oldest by a year. My mother was Andoran, so everyone blames her side of the family for me not being good at Daes Dae'mar. I was found to be able to channel by a passing Aes Sedai, who told me to come to the tower..."

 

She hesitated before asking the question that came to her at the memory of her testing. Should she ask? Did she really want to know the answer? Well, better ask now than be caught off-guard later... "If I may ask... what kind of things will be expected of me as a Novice? The Aes Sedai who found my ability didn't seem..." She braced herself. It was difficult to admit that anyone had questioned her ability to achieve her new dream. "...she didn't seem very optimistic about my chances of becoming even an Accepted."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Darienna seemed to be making a habit of sending her Novices that eerily reminded Estel of herself.  Sighing at what was more likely paranoia than any real attempt by the new Mistress of Novices, Estel took another sip of tea and listened attentively to Megain's history.  A noble?  Surprising.  At least there would be no problem with the more basic educational essentials.  And there didn't seem to be an huge lack of self-confidence.  Another bonus!

 

"As a Novices, you're expected to scrape and grovel for the Aes Sedai, jump when the Accepted says "toad" and do whatever meaningless work we classify as "character building".  Despite constant chores, your education remains paramount.  Being noble born, you have an edge over most of the other girls and will be exempted from classes on the basics of writing, reading and arithmetic.  And, of course, there is saidar."

 

The Blue took a moment to sense the girl's ability.  "You're strong enough in the One Power, but strength in saidar will only get you so far."  'And don't I know it.'  "Strength of character and determination will get you much farther."  'And don't I know that too.  Burn you Sirayn.'

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Megain paid close attention to what her mentor had to say, forgetting her nerves enough to grin when Estel mentioned the "meaningless work we classify as 'character building'." That does not sound good, she thought after the smile had left her face. Still. If my becoming an Aes Sedai requires me to drop my pride for some ten years, then it will be easy enough. She hoped.

 

She felt a great deal of relief when she discovered that she was allowed to bypass some classes concerning basic academic skills.

 

"And, of course, there is saidar."

 

Megain set up slightly at the mention of the One Power. The familiar excitement and wonder that she felt every time saidar was mentioned welled up in her again. She listened intently to what Estel Sedai said next.

 

"You're strong enough in the One Power, but strength in saidar will only get you so far. Strength of character and determination will get you much farther." 

 

Megain nodded. I will become Aes Sedai, she vowed.

 

Strength of character, though... that worried her. She was well aware of her liking of comforts. In the adventure novels her second-youngest sister Elienne had poured over as a young girl, the ones who had enjoyed being comfortable were always the greedy and spoilt ones who could never motivate themselves when hard times approached. Light! Let me not be one of them!

 

"I have determination, Estel Sedai," she said, trying to convince herself as well as the Aes Sedai. "I will not disappoint you. I promise!" She cringed and went bright red as she heard the tone in her voice. As bad as one of those heroes out of Elienne's novels! "I mean... I mean... I really will try hard, Estel Sedai."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Biting her lip to keep from laughing, she smiled at the girl.  While there were obvious parallels between herself, after having gained the Shawl, and Dre, Megain reminded the Blue of her own years as a Novice and Accepted.  Mind you, this girl seemed far more pleasant than Estel had ever been.  The fire was there, though and a desire Estel knew painfully well; the desire to prove one's self.  It was impossible to look at the girl and not remember times with Carise, struggling so hard to live up to the Reds standards despite prejudices based on Ajah choice.  Fifty years of hate for the women who Gentled her father, thirty years knowing Carise and Estel still hadn't worked her mind around the dichotomy that she both hated and loved her mentor.  The Red's disappointment when Estel had not lived up to expectation had been crushing.  Light pray she and Megain didn't have so many complications.

 

"As long as you throw everything you've got into reaching the Shawl, you should do just fine."  The words felt a bit awkward coming from her mouth; Estel was not usually one for comfort and encouragement, bitching was her forte.  Not wanting to venture too far into such unfamiliar territory, she changed the subject.  "Half-sisters, hmm?  I have no sisters except those in my Ajah." she smiled thinking of Rossa.  "I grew up in Bander Eban.  My mother remarried and I took my step-father's name, Liones, as I never got the chance to meet my father.  I fled to the Tower when my step-father tried to force me into an arranged marriage.  If I may, can I ask what happened to your mother?"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Megain smiled sheepishly back as Estel Sedai comforted her. She listened with interest to accounts of Estel's early life - the mention of a mysteriously absent father, the talk of an arranged marriage. Megain's eyes widened as Estel told her that she had run away from that marriage. I don't think I'd have the courage to do that, she thought to herself.

 

Maybe if she became an Aes Sedai, she might have enough self-confidence to stand up to her father. But not now.

 

"If I may, can I ask what happened to your mother?" Estel Sedai asked.

 

Megain paused before answering, taken aback by the question. “She died when I was born,” she replied after a moment, with some difficulty. She felt a surge of anger at the sorrow that saying that small sentence had evoked. Get a grip on yourself, Megain! You didn’t even know the woman, so why should you feel sad when you talk of her? But the feeling remained.

 

“It didn’t really affect me too much – ” Lies. You won’t be able to say that if you become Aes Sedai. But it was true, in a way. Emotionally, she probably hadn’t been affected to any great extent. But in Daes Dae’mar, not having a mother was not having your greatest ally. “ – because I had my stepmother to talk to, and my sisters of course. I know my stepmother cares for me almost as much as she does for Teranne, Elienne and Roseyn.” ‘Almost’ was the key word there, of course.

 

She fell silent then, and in the sudden quiet, she realised she was struggling not to yawn. She clamped her jaw down hard to resist the temptation, but the effort made her eyes water.

 

Distract yourself, she thought. Ask Estel Sedai a question. "Bander Eban, Estel Sedai? Where about is thaaa - " All her careful self-control finally cracked, and she yawned loudly.

 

She snapped her jaw shut immediately after, and quickly looked at Estel Sedai, hoping she hadn't been offended. 'Call yourself a noble?' The thought came in her father's weary voice, and she winced. 'You can't even stop yourself from yawning...'

 

"Pardon me, Estel Sedai. Sorry," she mumbled.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Estel couldn't help but raise an eyebrow when the girl asked where Bander Eban was.  A noble's daughter who didn't know her geography?  Or perhaps things were moving too quickly for Megain to think straight, it was a lot to take in.  Learning the next twenty to thirty years would be devoted to gaining a title that would then give you more or less unlimited power throughout most of the countries of the world, but in process you would be returned to more or less a second childhood.  Realising that while the rest of your family grew old, you would stay the same; younger sisters and former friends would marry and by the time Megain would wear the Shawl, those nieces and nephews would be grown up.  She would miss all of that.  Estel had been lucky her mother had borne her young, she had had the chance to see Anglika Liones, old and wrinkled while Estel herself looked more a grandaughter than daughter, one last time.  When most Novices left their parents for the Tower, that was the last time they would ever see them.

 

"Bander Eban is the capital of Arad Doman, child." she couldn't keep all the wry amusement from her voice, particularly when Megain couldn't finish the question without yawning.  "Whether or not you would realise it, not growing up with your own mother will have affected you."  Not that Estel believed Megain didn't realise the implications of not growing up with a biological mother.  "I grew up with a step-father, never having met my father.  I think of family differently than most others who grew up with both their biological parents.  Your childhood is always spent wondering what the missing parent was like, blaming yourself and them for leaving, dreaming that by some miracle they might actually come back and you'd have a real family." 

 

It had been a long time since the Domani Blue had been able to talk to anyone like this.  Rossa had been the first since Carise had gone off again.  This was a weakness of hers, blabbering on to the wrong people when she became desperate because she had no one else to talk to.  That was the problem with pushing everyone away and harbouring her many, many grudges; back while she was Accepted, she had been able to talk to Serena, before that she had been far more open with fellow Novices despite never really having many friends.  Her compulsive need to share was what had landed her with Sirayn's leash aroud her neck.  Perhaps it was time she started making more friends, she couldn't bear another repeat of Sirayn.  Unfortunately, Estel wasn't exactly easy to get along with despite Megain's apparant ease while talking with her.

 

Standing, Megain followed suit, the Blue walked the new Novice over to the door, without words signalling that the meeting was done.  "It's been a long day, I'm sure.  Go back to your room and finish settling in, you may or may not have a roommate to help you get situated but if you need anything else, ask a fellow Novice or Accepted to lead you to my rooms.  Tomorrow, I'll have my other mentee, Dre, come pick you up and lead you to a place in the gardens where we'll start your lessons with saidar.  Good night child."  Conveniently, for Estel and Megain rather than the poor Accepted, an aspirant was passing by.  "You!"  The Blue barely contained a smirk as the Accepted failed to hide a particularly pained expression.  Estel did have a reputation.  "Escort Megain back to the Novice's Quarters."

 

With a last parting smile, the Blue disappeared back into her rooms to weigh the benefits of getting to know some of her other Sisters a little better against the risk of just creating more grudges.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...