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Christine

Welcome to the Tower... NOT! (Attn: Elgee)

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"Melainia Mosagina.  She was tested."

 

The door slamming shut behind her, Melainia Mosagina jumped, startled, and twisted quickly to see the door shut tight behind Jaydena Sedai.  Turning back around to see the woman before her, Mel took in the sight to see.  There was a large desk before her, stacked with papers and books.  Tall bookshelves were to one side, and a large fireplace on the other.  The walls had beautiful red tapestries, and there were elegant candles with red gems to one side.  A soft, rich red rug was on the floor, and as Mel looked around, there was a warming, graceful red glow to the room. What was it Jaydena Sedai had called herself?  Green Ajah?  Well, whatever an Ajah is, this Aes Sedai must be red.

 

Turning to her left, she noticed a glass fronted cabinet with a strap and slipper inside.  What in the light is that for?   She then saw a huge mirror against the same wall as the door, and Mel had to turn and look at her reflection.  Her long blonde hair had a film of dust on the long braid that was sitting over her shoulder.  Her pale white skin was slightly darker from the dust as well, but still had a slightly rosy glow.  Her tan breeches hung loosely to her hips and her white shirt clung to the slight glistening sweat that had arisen from the ride in the carriage.  Her new boots were still being broken in and she could feel the blisters on her feet.

 

Turning back to the Aes Sedai, she shifted her pack from one arm to the other.  Inside, she had one change of clothes and her family’s possessions – a few books from her father and her mother’s few feminine items.  The sword hung at her hip and she placed her hand over the hilt and bowed low before the woman that was slowly rising from her desk.  She was a tall woman, with dark hair and dark skin.  She wore a flowing red dress that was modest yet still fashionable.  She had a motherly face to her, and had a sweet smile that almost made Mel feel welcomed…. Almost.

 

“As Jaydena Sedai said,” that stupid old witch, “my name is Melainia Mosagina.  She brought me from Shienar, after she told me I could channel.  I have no idea what is going on, but I did see men outside training, and I would much prefer to join them.”  The woman had an odd smirk on her face, and returned to her seat, sitting back in the chair, as if welcoming Mel in.  Mel slid into the chair in front of the desk, and continued her plea.  “All of you ladies seem so prim and proper, and I am just a country girl.  Let me train with my sword, and not with this power that Jaydena Sedai seems to think I posses.  I promise, you will not regret it.”  Oh Light, I don’t like this already…

 

Melainia Mosagina

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Larindhra could not prevent one eyebrow from rising in surprise as Jaydena entered her office, announced a new novice, then left just as abruptly. Maybe the woman was just tired from a long journey, judging from the state of said new novice, but she made a mental note to drop in on the Green Sister later. On those few occasions that their paths had crossed, their meetings had always been cordial.

 

Putting that aside for now, Larindhra concentrated her attention on the girl in front of her. She waved a hand to the chair in front of her with as warm a smile as she could muster, under the circumstances.  The huge sword the girl carried on her hip made sitting slightly awkward, she noted. She had a suspicion the girl was not going to give the thing up easily, judging by the she caressed the hilt.

 

Her suspicion was born out when the girl expresses her desire to join the Warders. Suppressing a sigh and a desire to roll her eyes, she decided to demonstrate her point instead. Channelling a flow or Air, she lifted the teapot and poured both of them a cup, floated it to the table, then leaned back in her chair and took a sip. “Child, I might not regret allowing you to fritter away your ability, but you certainly will. Why use that,” she pointed to the sword, “when you can do this?” Weaving Air and Spirit together, she formed a coldly gleaming sword in front of her. “In fact, why use that, when there are so many other options available to you?” Again she wove, this time pure Air to trap the girl’s arms and sword against her sides, then lifted her out of her chair. That was about as much as her strength allowed, but chances were this girl could become much stronger than she was. “So, why not give channelling a chance?” Larindhra asked, coolly regarding Melainia over her teacup.

 

 

Larindhra Reyne

Mistress of Novices

 

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The woman before her sat back, and stared for a moment, before leaning forward slightly.  Her eyes went to the teapot on her desk, and Mel looked there as well.  She saw the teapot slowly rise up off the table and pour two cups of tea.  Her eyes could not leave it as it slowly rested back on the desk.  The Aes Sedai seemed so calm, but Mel thought she would pass out or her heart would fly from her chest.  That was not normal!  Things do not just fly off of a table into mid air!  This has to be some type of trick!

 

“Child, I might not regret allowing you to fritter away your ability, but you certainly will.”  Ugh, ability?  She calls being an Aes Sedai ability?  It was a curse more than anything!  All freedom was lost upon having this special ‘ability’.  “Why use that,” Mel saw her point at her sword, and she almost whimpered in her chair.  They would not take her sword from her.  “when you can do this?”

 

A sword was formed before her.  What in the blasted light?  She had created a sword in mid air. “In fact, why use that, when there are so many other options available to you?”  And suddenly the sword was gone, and instead Mel was trapped in her chair.  She was too upset and shocked to struggle, and stayed still, not moving as the chair went up in the air and then back down.  Oh Light, they are going to torture me!

 

“So, why not give channeling a chance?” Mel sat back in the chair, her head spinning.  She saw the teacup that had been poured for her and, in order to avoid passing out AGAIN, she reached for it and took a slow sip, centering her attention on it.  She shifted in her chair slightly, then set the tea cup back down, wincing at the bitter taste.  No wonder she had stuck to Ale and Water all this time.

 

“Ok.  I can channel.  And I will give it a chance.  But I have to know a few things first.”   The Aes Sedai nodded as if she could continue.  “Alright.  First, I need to know if I can keep my things.  I have some things from my family that… I treasure them, and would be grateful to keep them.”  The Aes Sedai sat back in her chair, as if considering the matter, so Mel went on.

 

“Also, you may be able to create that sword, but this sword-“ and she indicated the one at her side “-has been with me for a long time.  I would like to keep it with me.  I would never use it against someone, but it is…” She didn’t want to call it a security blanket, although at the moment, that was exactly how she felt.  “I would just like to keep it.”

 

The Aes Sedai poured herself another cup of tea, then set back in her chair again.  Maybe if Mel was more open to this idea of ‘channeling’ then she could keep her things.  “And will you please tell me more about this White Tower?  Jaydena Sedai did not explain much to me, and I would like to learn more.  I honestly don’t know much about Aes Sedai either, so I would like to know more…”

 

After all, she couldn’t run away if this woman had her things…

 

Melainia Mosagina

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Larindhra leant back in her chair and regarded Melainia with a blandly smiling expression, but she wasn’t fooled by the sudden capitulation. She had a feeling this child was going to be full of tricks, once she recovered her spirit. She poured herself another cup of tea to give herself some time to think. Normally she would have confiscated something like a sword and kept it in secure storage, but something told her she might need leverage later.

 

“I see no reason why you cannot keep your possessions in your room … as long as you behave.  You will not be allowed to wear the sword, you understand?” Her smile was motherly and encouraging. Let the girl think her fooled – she would be less careful to hide her true plans. She had noticed the slight grimace when Melainia sipped her tea, so another flow of Air lifted the honey pot and placed it gently next to the barely touched teacup. “That brew can be a bit bitter; a bit of honey might help.”

 

“You will be assigned a Mentor to instruct and guide you, but let me see … do you know what the name Aes Sedai means? No? It is Old Tongue for Servants of All. That is what we try to be. There are different ways of doing this, which is why there are seven Ajah’s, each with their own specific mission. For instance, the Yellow Ajah are the Healers, the Greens are the Battle Ajah, and we Reds try to prevent another Breaking. You might find the Greens particularly interesting; most of them have seen more battles than any ten Warders combined. But it will be years yet before you have to decide which Ajah suits you best, and many things you will have to learn first.“

 

Larindhra chuckled quietly. “I am getting ahead of myself. First let us get you officially signed up.” She drew the novice book towards her and dipped her quill in the ink.  “Is Melainia Mosagina your full name? Where were you born and how old are you?”

 

 

Larindhra Reyne

Mistress of Novices

 

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“I see no reason why you cannot keep your possessions in your room … as long as you behave.  You will not be allowed to wear the sword, you understand?” Mel smiled, almost giddy with delight.  She could keep her sword, as well as her real clothes. This is almost too good to be true. For all their pomp and extravagance, Aes Sedai were rather stupid.

 

The honey pot rose into the air and landed beside her tea cup.  She had to resist shuddering – she still wasn’t used to all this crazy stuff flying through the air, including herself.  “That brew can be a bit bitter; a bit of honey might help.” Being polite, Mel put a little honey in her cup and sipped again.  Well, it was slightly better, but tea was still a disgusting thing created only for punishment.

 

“You will be assigned a Mentor to instruct and guide you, but let me see … do you know what the name Aes Sedai means? No? It is Old Tongue for Servants of All. That is what we try to be. There are different ways of doing this, which is why there are seven Ajah’s, each with their own specific mission. For instance, the Yellow Ajah are the Healers, the Greens are the Battle Ajah, and we Reds try to prevent another Breaking. You might find the Greens particularly interesting; most of them have seen more battles than any ten Warders combined. But it will be years yet before you have to decide which Ajah suits you best, and many things you will have to learn first.“

 

Hmm… Greens didn’t sound so bad.  Battle Ajah means wars… Wait, did she say years?  YEARS to be an Aes Sedai? That’s it, I knew it, they are all absolutely bloody insane!   “I am getting ahead of myself. First let us get you officially signed up.” A large book was suddenly before the Aes Sedai, and she dipped her quill in the ink. “Is Melainia Mosagina your full name? Where were you born and how old are you?”

 

Mel had to think for a moment.  How old was she?  It had never really mattered before.  “Yes, Aes Sedai.  I prefer to go by Mel, however.  I was born in Shienar, and I am 18 or 19.”   This received an eyebrow raise from the Aes Sedai.  “I don’t honestly know.  It just wasn’t all that important to me.” Mel was suddenly embarrassed, and looked down at her hands.  She tried another sip of the tea, coughing on it as she took too big of a swallow.

 

Regaining her composure, she brushed the strands of hair that had fallen in her face back and looked at the Aes Sedai, who was back to shifting around papers.  “You said something about a Mentor?  And you never mentioned your name, Ma’am, although I have guessed you are an Aes Sedai of the Red Ajah.”   Wow that was a stupid comment.

 

Melainia “MEL” Mosagina

 

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Larindhra raised an eyebrow. The girl wasn’t sure of her own age? Oh well, some who came to the Tower weren’t even sure of their last names. It didn’t really matter, though; the honorific Aes Sedai was enough for any woman. Those who couldn’t read or write, were taught. There was almost nothing the Tower couldn’t teach. “We will just enter it as eighteen, child,” Larindhra smiled comfortingly at Melainia. That was the upper limit on age the White Tower accepted, though Larindhra was not quite in agreement with that rule.

 

“You said something about a Mentor?  And you never mentioned your name, Ma’am, although I have guessed you are an Aes Sedai of the Red Ajah.” 

 

Larindhra tsked to herself. Old age must be getting to her, if she could forget her manners that far! Though she wasn’t really that old, for an Aes Sedai – barely into her middle years, by all accounts. “Forgiveness, child. My name is Larindhra Reyne, and yes, I am an Aes Sedai of the Red Ajah.” She held up a corner of the shawl draped over the back of her chair, showing the long red fringe. “Though most Sisters do not usually wear their shawls in the Tower, except on formal occasions, it is a useful way to figure out which Ajah one belongs to. The fringe will indicate the Ajah.”

 

She rose to get the girl a set of novice whites from her storeroom, speaking over her shoulder. “Your mentor will be Jasmyne Ceres, Aes Sedai of the Red Ajah.” If anyone knew all the tricks, Jasmyne surely did! And sometimes, revenge was best served in kind, even if many years later. Larindhra could barely suppress a rather evil chuckle at the thought. “Put these on, then I will show you to your new room.”

 

Larindhra Reyne

Mistress of Novices

Trusting in Jasmyne

 

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“Forgiveness, child. My name is Larindhra Reyne, and yes, I am an Aes Sedai of the Red Ajah.” Did she really just apologise? Mel saw a long red fringe coming off the shawl that Larindhra Sedai was holding up.  “Though most Sisters do not usually wear their shawls in the Tower, except on formal occasions, it is a useful way to figure out which Ajah one belongs to. The fringe will indicate the Ajah.”   Why were Ajahs colors?  And what is each Ajah for? Melainia had so many questions in her mind, she didn’t know where to start.

 

Larindhra Sedai was up again, reaching into a closet.  “Your mentor will be Jasmyne Ceres, Aes Sedai of the Red Ajah.” What in the blasted light is a mentor for? And what does Aes Sedai mean anyways? So many different names and words  and customs that these strange Aes Sedai used, it was like another language or culture.  “Put these on, then I will show you to your new room.”   And with that, two white somethings were placed into her hands.

 

Looking down at them, Melainia rose slowly, sliding her bag and sword off and setting them on the chair.  She set the one bulk in the seat, and held the other up from a sleeve.  A dress.  A bloody dress?  Who in the…  The Aes Sedai was staring at her, expectedly, and Mel slipped off her shirt, then her boots and breeches.  Standing in just her undergarments, she pulled the dress on, awkwardly looking for where her arms went.

 

After a few minutes, she figured it out, looking down at it.  Not able to help herself, she started laughing before pulling it back over her head.  Already in the process of putting her pants on, she then balled the dress up.  “This just won’t-“ the Aes Sedai had an eyebrow raised, and Mel cut off short on her words. 

 

Pulling the dress back over her head, she left her breeches on, at least happy she couldn’t feel her bare thighs rubbing together.  The Aes Sedai had turned around to grab something, and Mel pulled her boots on. This is so coming off as soon as possible. She balled up her shirt and stuffed it in her bag, and grabbed her other dress and sword.  “What now?”

 

Melainia Mosagina

%&#@^*@ DRESS!

 

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Larindhra gave no indication that she had seen the girl leave her trousers on and slip her boots back on under the dress. The more she left her with now, the more she could take away as punishment later. She was sure she would need every bit of trade-off she could muster, with this one.

 

“What now Aes Sedai or Larindhra Sedai, would be a good start,” she replied wryly.  “Next up will be learning to curtsy, but I will leave that to your Mentor to teach you,” she added with a smirk she could not quite hide. Jasmyne was going to love this one. “Now, come with me.” She wasn’t about to allow the girl the opportunity to slip away before she had set up some watchers, which made for a rather interesting trip to the novice quarters; despite some popular misconceptions, Aes Sedai did not quite have eyes in the back of their heads.

 

Once the child was installed in a room, she rounded up some of the girls she could trust and gave them their instructions. One was sent to find Jasmyne Sedai and deliver a message that the Mistress of Novices requested the pleasure of her company at her earliest convenience. Larindhra strolled back to her office with a smile threatening the corners of her mouth. This was going to be fun.

 

 

Larindhra Reyne

Mistress of Novices

Trusting in Jasmyne

 

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Jasmyne shuffled through some papers on her low desk. She had become a bit more interested in developing her own personal Eyes and Ears and now the paperwork was getting ahead of her. But it never hurt to know something that someone else didn't, like where some channeling men might be, ripe for shipping to the Great Lord.

 

A knock on her door snapped her out of her little world and she gave a harsh "Enter" without looking up from her work. A red-haired novice with a face peppered in freckles entered with a deep curtsey and said nothing. This one must have been to see her before. After she finished her paper, Jas looked up. "What is it?

 

"Larindhra Sedai requests your presence in her office at your earliest convenience, Jasmyne Sedai." The vein on Jas's forehead buldged just a little. That wretched woman! She knows that Jas can't focus on anything when  she knws that Lari needed her. "Fine, you may go." The novice curtseyed again and scurried out with Jas on her heels.

 

She opened the door to the Mistress of Novices office and took a seat before Larindhra could say anything. "What is it that you need?" she said as calmy as possible, but she could tell her tone was a little on the cutting side. She wanted to be done with her as soon as possible.

 

~**~

 

Mentoring? Well, that wasn't so bad. But there was something about this one. Lari was trying to hide a smug look from her, so the girl was probably some priss.

 

Jas sauntered back to her rooms and send a novice to fetch the new girl. She hated the novice quarters and would avoid them if at all possible. Jas looked around her rooms to make sure everything was in place. Her room could be described as lavish, but that would be an understatement. Gilt was on everything, her deep red curtains and drapes were fully embroidered with thread-of-gold, and everything else was more than fit for a queen. She took a seat on one of her sofas and waited for the soft, malleable girl to arrive.

 

Jasmyne Ceres Sedai of the Red Ajah

Unfortunately shares an Ajah with Larindhra

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