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DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

Slaggy Pants Lillian (attn: Kasi)


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Know what? Saline couldn’t decide whether or not Lillian had been sulking since she was almost sure the other had been avoiding her. Not that they hung out all the time as both had been busy, but during the last month she had not a single glimpse of the White Sister.

 

Her other problem was that, though Kasi’s progress was evident throughout the past four weeks she still needed a lot more guidance, and Lillian was to step up regardless of her personal preferences. Saline would feel bad about gifting Lillian with Kasi, but she had already sacrificed a month of her own search for this.

 

Enough was enough.

 

“Shall we continue tomorrow?”

 

“No,” Saline replied “ we won’t, for I must away.”

 

There was a moment of silence as neither spoke.

 

Kasi asked, “will you be back soon?”

 

“Depends on how fast I can find the person I’m tracking,” Saline was smiling, for an idea had struck her. It was pure inspiration, as were the bread crumbs left by the two children in one of Rory’s fairy tale stories.  She would give Kasi all the tools and clues, but it was up to the girl to solve this trick. “My leaving the city does not mean I’ll let you off though. You will continue your lessons with a new tutor, though she doesn’t know it yet. Her name is Lillian Tremina. Finding her, however, will be your errand. It’s what you will be doing for the rest of the day.”

 

Saline neglected to mention Lillian was, in fact, one of the Aes Sedai. She can imagine the scene now, a novice confronting the Sister. With anybody else Saline would have reckoned the novice to run back to her room crying, but it was Lillian who rarely, if ever, did mean. 

 

Practically pushing her student out of the room Saline only said, “take this envelop to Lillian, she will know which assignment you’ll be doing together“

 

“But what if she’s not here?”

 

“Don’t come back until you find her.” Saline said, confident Lillian wouldn’t leave the Tower while Kasi was there. Not as advocate of embracing her emotions to resolve issues.

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The day had started out like any other. Even her class had been as usual. The exercises to help Kasi learn to touch Saidar had been helping more and more. She was now finally being able to use it with only a try or two. It seemed like a miracle. She was now excited to come to the classes with Saline Sedai. Her initial misgivings towards the woman were now gone. If she were to come into a problem Kasi would now have ran to Saline first off before anyone else.

 

At the end of their lesson Saline didn't dismiss her as usual. For awhile she seemed lost in thought. Kasi was glad, and not for the first time, that their lessons started just after midday meal rather than before. As she waited patiently to be released Kasi started to daydream about what it would be like once she was raised to Aes Sedai and to have the ability to use Saidar at her own will rather than just when allowed. Snapping herself out of her own reverie Kasi noted that Saline was still deep in thought. "Shall we continue tomorrow?" Maybe the prompt will grab the Aes Sedai's attention back to the present. Hopefully it was appropriate.

 

"No," Saline replied, "we won't, for I must away." Away? Where is she going? She can't just leave me here to do nothing now can she? Kasi tried to digest the abandonment for a moment but set her resolve back once more. Nothing will stop me. Nothing! "Will you be back soon?" Maybe it is just a trip to do a small errand. Kasi could hope at least.

 

“Depends on how fast I can find the person I’m tracking,” Saline started smiling of all things. Smiling! Kasi was now perplexed at what her mentor had in store for her. “My leaving the city does not mean I’ll let you off though. You will continue your lessons with a new tutor, though she doesn’t know it yet. Her name is Lillian Tremina. Finding her, however, will be your errand. It’s what you will be doing for the rest of the day.” A new tutor? The shock only stayed for a moment, but it was a large shock to Kasi. Lillian.... the name seems somewhat familiar, if only I could remember how.

 

While Kasi was still trying to find the words to ask the questions she wanted Saline took her by the arm and almost pushed her out of the room. “Take this envelop to Lillian, she will know which assignment you’ll be doing together.“

 

Looking down at the envelope in her hand Kasi didn't know what to say for a moment. “But what if she’s not here?”

 

“Don’t come back until you find her.” That was the end of the conversation and Kasi knew better than to push it any farther. With a deep courtesy she acquiesced. "As you command, Aes Sedai." Kasi stood for awhile out in the hallway. Confused by the task at hand and still not really sure what had transpired in the last few minutes.

 

Find Lillian Tremina? Who is she? That name seems so very familiar. She still couldn't shake the feeling that she should know who that is. With a sigh she set off in search of the woman. Where to look though? Well, since she didn't say Lillian Sedai, I guess I start in the kitchens. After all it seemed like that was where most everyone in the Tower that wasn't Aes Sedai seemed to spend most of their time either through various chores or errands. Still stunned, but still determined to make the most of what she was given Kasi headed off to the kitchens to get started. This may be a long day...

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For most people, Aes Sedai were intimidating people, best to be left alone. But for Laras the Sisters were still very human, live as they might longer than ordinary spans of life, they also gave an inconceiveable chunk of their long expectancy to training. It was hard to be diffident to those she cooked for.

 

When, in addition to supervising the scullions and trainees alike toiling in the kitchens, a person's job consisted of feed everybody from the Amyrlin Seat to the most ignoble servants, Laras' administrations were understandably in demanded. Yet, Mistress Laras seemed to know everything that went on her busy demesne. Before the intruder, a tall novice looking lost, had been there for long Mistress Laras had left off stirring the lentil soup and located her. Swift as thought Laras asked the novice's name, Kasi which she pronounced was indeed pretty as far as names go then inquired after her business.

 

Despite having generated many chores and punishments for the character training of those Tower initiates, Laras was a stout woman with a big laugh and even bigger heart. To those novices and accepted, even those who were never her helping hands, Laras reserved a particularly tender spot in that big heart of hers, particularly accepted seeing how they were being carefully weaned from the Mistress of Novices' influence. She remembered Lillian as an accepted. Lillian's best friend Taei Mirel, who never made it to be accepted. And sometimes Lillian would come here with Darienna Sedai, and comforted by the tempering hands of the former Mistress of Novices then, Laras would prepare the best toast for them.

 

Therefore when Kasi mentioned who she looked for a broad smile shone on Laras' face as her mind was filled with fondness for Lillian. She said kindly, "if she's teaching you a class I know for a fact that girl loves to escape to a garden whenever possible." The Mistress of Kitchens beckoned, bending her cap near "A moment Kasi . . . would you mind taking some toast to Lillian when you do find her? She is so thin now."

 

The novice nodded and Laras asked, "what would you like to drink, name your poison."

 

As the novice sat on the stool with her glass and was looking around Laras worked efficiently, and in silence. Although it could never be too quiet in the kitchens where many things were going on. None of the workers looked up to gawk though. Even as she managed to get all her work finished bright and early, Laras often had visiters over the kitchens.

 

Wrapping the dish with a warm towel to retain the heat Laras spoke, "Lillian's good value, I tell you. A natural at teaching. She makes a person think, she does. Once she asked me about my painting you see over there, see the one with these people at the tavern? Yeah, the one behind you, with the three figures who sit alone nursing their ales. She asked, what do you suppose they're thinking about?"

 

"I told her it was probably about themselves. People are wont to think about themselves a lot, you know. Particularly evident for those trying to drown their sorrows in wine or food, I tell you."

 

"But she says, they're thinking of somebody else. And how lonely they look!" In went the toasts, and setting down the tongs Laras smiled. "Lillian was right. From then on, every glance at the painting reminds me how lonely people can be without their friends."

 

Still smiling Laras handed the novice a basket with the dish of toast inside. As well as some other surprises, all Lillian's favorites. "Anyway you should probably head on out to Lillian before the food gets cold. Do me a favor and give her my regards."

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  • 1 month later...

The painting had stuck in Kasi's memory. How lonely people can be without their friends. I miss mine. She kept thinking about her friends back home and if she'll ever see them again. There were a couple people that she didn't mind around here, but she didn't really have a friend. Most people didn't seem to agree with her view of Aes Sedai. Which to her was absolutely illogical because they were all going to be Aes Sedai!

 

Struggling with the basket Kasi tried to weave her way out of the kitchens without bumping into anyone, which was easier said than done. Avoiding people as well as pots, pans and kettles was a chore, not to mention the occasional ladle sticking out over the edge of a pot. By the time Kasi got back to the hallway she was already tired of carrying the basket. I sure hope that Lillian is easier to find now. She leaned against the doorway for a minute and rearranged the basket a bit to make it as easy to carry as she could.

 

Finally settled, Kasi started off towards the gardens. I sure hope there aren't a lot of Aes Sedai that I encounter along the way. Curtsying for the first Aes Sedai that she saw, Kasi didn't think that avoiding Aes Sedai would happen today. She made her way step by step, lugging the basket and making the appropriate curtsies for those who required it, which was just about everyone. I sure hope she's in the gardens.

 

----

 

The gardens were beautiful. Flowers from all corners of the world, including some that Kasi had never seen, were in full bloom. As Kasi made her way through the gardens she tried to identify them and found that more often that not she couldn't. As Kasi rounded a corner she stopped dead in her tracks. Ahead of her was a patch of herbs to make any gardener back home jealous. No wonder all the food tastes wonderful around here. She tried to identify the herbs and had much better luck than she had with the flowers.

 

Seeing a bench near the end of the herb garden Kasi decided to rest for a moment. I sure hope that she's in here somewhere. Lugging this heavy thing all over the tower having to curtsy for Aes Sedai every couple steps... Kasi sighed at the thought of having to do this all afternoon. Checking her pouch to ensure the letter she had been given was still there Kasi leaned against the trunk of some sort of tree behind the bench. Well, at least there aren't many Aes Sedai in the gardens today.

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  • 2 weeks later...

After her short break Kasi took the basket and finished her route in the gardens. Not finding a soul around she put the basket down at the exit to the gardens for a moment and tried to decide her next move. Where else could this Lillian person be? I've tried the Kitchens, the gardens were suggested by Laras... How about the library? With a sigh and a small shrug her mind was made up. Worst thing could be that she's not there, and maybe someone will tell me where I can find her.

 

Lifting the basket again she slowly made her way through the hallways to the library. Making the appropriate curtsies to all the Aes Sedai she ran into. Well, at least one good thing will come out of today. My arms are going to be a lot more fit after this expedition is over. Surpressing the urge to giggle she finally got to the door to the library. Carefully turning the knob and standing back to make sure that she didn't have a Brown run into her by accident Kasi opened the door. Seeing that the way was clear Kasi approached the desk situated in the middle of the room where a Brown was sitting. "Excuse me, Aes Sedai, but I was sent to look for a woman by the name of Lillian. Might you know if she is here or not?" Kasi sat the basket down on the floor next to the table because her arm was getting tired.

 

The Brown sister looked up from her papers and then looked quizzically from Kasi to the basket and back again. Kasi had noticed that sometimes it took a minute or two for some Brown sisters to recall what you had been talking about. "Lillian you say?" The Brown paused as if going through a list of people in the Tower in her head. "Haven't seen her in here for about a week or so. She was looking up books about the Wheel of Time and about the pattern repeating itself on the small scale. Wouldn't say why she was researching it though." The Brown shrugged as if it wasn't unusual for Lillian to look up things without a reason given. "As for where to find her, I'd try the stables if I were you. She's been known to be there more often than not of late. There or the Warder's Yard." With a dismissing shrug the woman went back to the papers set before her.

 

You know, if it wasn't for the fact that many of the Brown's I've met are dismissive of the world like that, I would have taken that as in insult. Kasi had told that to Saline after she had met her first Brown sister after Claire Sedai when she first arrived. When it was explained to her that it wasn't meant as an insult and they were just wrapped up in seeking knowledge it made more sense to Kasi, but still seemed odd even after all this time. Picking up the basket she curtsied to the Aes Sedai just in case someone else was watching and then carefully continued out the door. So, the stables now. Kasi sighed. This is definitely going to be one of the longest days I have ever had.

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Laura Sedai's diary showed extraordinary workmanship when examined. Emobossed words stood out from the smooth leather of the cover, which disappeared in neat little tucks under the painted endpapers inside. The pages were thin enough to crinkle slightly when turned. Fine quality paper.

 

Cracking the diary open with excessive care, Donna pored smilingly over the maps and illustrations scattered throughout. Laura's letters, so full of meaning to those who knew old tongue, were draped over the paleness like a  black net. Unsurprisingly, the archivist was not too pleased when a girl in white pulled her from her work. She made brief answers to the aspirant concerning her friend Lillian, who had been coming and going from the libraries at random hours ever since she was assigned to guard the secret storerooms underneath as a novice.

 

Yet there was something off about Taei, something funny that tickled at Donna. Not the flowery scent from her as though she'd just scampered in with the daffodils, although Donna was allergic to pollen. But it would not be until another Aes Sedai brought Donna out of Laura's diary with her supper that her spoon would clatter on the tray in great astonishment at something that was not written in the diary.

 

Taei Mirel died years ago . . .

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  • 1 month later...

Well, she's not in the kitchens, gardens, library or stables. Where else could this wandering mystery woman be? Sitting down on a bench near the stables for a moment Kasi let her mind ponder that question as she watched the comings and goings of those around her. I'm sure she would have said something if she expected her to be somewhere I couldn't go so the Ajah Halls are a pretty big no. What else does that leave?

 

The warm sun was making it's way down from the apex of it's journey at an alarming rate now. Kasi hoped that she would be able to go to sleep having completed her goal of finding Lillian, but was worrying more and more that this might not happen. All the stable hands had been busy so she hadn't bothered any of them, but she was starting to wonder if this might have been a big mistake. There has to be someone who knows where this Lillian person is, there has to be!

 

"You look lost." The voice behind Kasi was enough to shock her into the here and now. Turning around she saw a stable hand, about her own age. He wasn't bad looking, but was still rather gangly. Kasi found herself blushing as she turned quickly to meet his gaze. "Maybe I can be of assistance. My name is Nate. I won't say that I know everything that goes on around here, but I know enough." A small smirk worked it's way onto his face.

 

"Well, Nate, I appreciate the offer of assistance, but I'm not sure if just knowing your way around would be helpful at the moment. I'm looking for someone, a woman by the name of Lillian Tremina, only problem is I don't know where she might be or even what she looks like." Feeling the red in her cheeks get brighter at the admission she stopped there and awaited what response she might get from the boy. He seemed to be enjoying her discomfort way too much at this point.

 

"Lillian Tremina you say? Well, now I could understand why finding her might be an issue recently. She hasn't been keeping to the prescribed routes for an Aes Sedai, but then many don't to tell the truth." With a knowing grin he watched the small flicker of dismay flash over her features at the mention of Aes Sedai. "You weren't aware that you were being sent to a sister then?" A small shake of her head no was all that he needed. "Well, the best place to find Lillian Sedai would usually be one of two places, this being one and the second being the Warder's Yard. She's often found there." Kasi offered him much thanks for his help another knowing grin lit up his face. "Perhaps a name would be enough of a symbol of thanks.

 

With a shocked look Kasi realized that he had introduced himself to her but that she hadn't extended the same courtesy to him. "Oh, my! Where's my manners today. I must be half mad after this search." With cheeks that were a truly deep shade of scarlet she answered his question. "My name is Kasi, Kasi Duvan. I hope to meet you again one day Nate, but I really must run and find this Aes Sedai." Picking up her basket she headed off immediately towards the Warder's Yard and hoped that the boy wouldn't follow her.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

Finally reaching the Warder's Yard Kasi set out about finding out which of the women there was her new mentor. After several random guesses, all of which were wrong she was pointed towards a practice area off to one side where two figures were sparing. One was dressed in black from head to toe, he lacked the shifting cape of a warder but there was no doubt to Kasi that he was one. The second person was a woman, her hair was pulled back to keep it out of her face. She was wearing a white shirt and breeches despite the dusty area in which they were battling and dark boots, all of which were surprisingly clean, her figure was well toned if slightly round and she fought the man with a look on her face that would have scared most of the men that Kasi knew when she grew up. The warder sparing with her didn't even seem to notice the look.

 

Around the two there was a small crowd gathered. A few women stood apart from the rest, their elegant demeanor screamed Aes Sedai to Kasi. Gathering her basket and herself she approached the group serenely. Stopping a few steps off she started her curtsy as she started talking, "Excuse me, Aes Sedai, but I was sent to talk to Lillian Sedai. Which of you is that, if I might ask?" Coming out of the curtsy she noticed the slightly amused expressions on their faces. The tallest of them, obviously Domini by her dress, spoke up first, "Child, you are talking to the wrong people here. If you are looking for Lillian Sedai you'll have to wait till the match is over for she is one of the combatants."

 

Kasi was dumbstruck for a moment at this revelation. The wild woman that was sparring with a warder in a white outfit that wasn't getting dirty in spite of a cloud of dust that surrounded them was the woman she was sent to talk to. She did her best not to gawk at her as the fight continued. She just hoped that she was able to regain her composure before it was over. Oh, by the light! What have I gotten myself into now?

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An audience had gathered, perhaps due to the new techniques she picked up from her travels abroad.

 

For a moment Lillian stared unbelievingly at the basket-carrying figure in the white dress which had just mounted the match arena, and then concentrated her gaze on her latest, not to mention ill-matched from general opinion, sparring partner Braxton.

 

"Tell me, Braxonator, have you ever won a spar before?"

 

The Tower Guard was thinking.

 

After a few twirls with his lathe he replied: "not really, Lillian Sedai, unless the time Aran and I fooled with the whip counted . . ."

 

She was conscious of a feeling of guilt (drama was not usually her thing); then, closing her eyes and hardening her will, she sprang lightly in the air and descended with both feet on the ground below the sparring dais.

 

"Consider this one a victory then. I forfeit."

 

The crowd stared after her, astonished. But the girl followed, as Lillian knew she would.

 

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  • 5 months later...

Kasi watched, a bit puzzled, as Lillian jumped out of the sparring ring and forfeited the match. Not really sure what she was supposed to do she followed the woman back across the yard. She tried not to lose her as they weaved through the many people who were watching the matches today. Luckily the crowd had thinned a bit as it got later on in the day, but it was still difficult to keep up with the basket full of items in her arms.

 

Where in the light are we going?!? She knew that the woman had seen her, she could tell that there wasn't much that the woman didn't see. If this is some kind of trick I'll... I'll.... do something mean to Saline the next time I see her. Dunno what that will be, but I'll find something. She noticed that Lillian had seemed slightly uncomfortable when she first laid eyes on her, or at least that's what it seemed like for a fleeting second. Aes Sedai were masters at keeping their feelings to themselves, but if you paid attention there were hints here and there. They were still like the rest of us after all, just had more practice controlling their faces.

 

Kasi almost ran over Lillian when she stopped abruptly. "Oh, I'm so sorry Aes Sedai." Her bumbling apology made her cheeks turn red with embarassment, "I was tasked to find you in order to continue my training. I... uhm... these are for you." She gestured with the basket, "Laras made them for you." Letting her sentence trail off with uncertainty she looked at the ground in front of her feet uncomfortably.

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  • 2 months later...

It would be too much to say that Lillian Tremina snorted. Women of her upbringing do not snort. Instead, she gave a sombre nod. The kind of nod that Artur Paendrag Tanreall might have given if somebody had asked him in 939 "ah, so you just came back from Tear?" (after all, the destruction of the second dragon was how the high king had gotten the name Hawkwing.)

 

She had known of Kasi's existence. After all, Saline was the first to inform Lillian who Kasi was in relation to Taei after Lillian set eyes on the girl and walked away from them both. But, just looking at Kasi, it hurts too much. Emotions she thought she had resolved threaten to trickle out like beer from a jug. There was still a fair bit of mud on Lillian's face, but not so much that it hid her wounded expression.

 

"Thank you for the food, Kasi. You may continue your training with your teacher now."

 

She had always been unremittingly kind to Saline, but if the woman would not do such a little thing for her, Lillian would kick Saline's head through her hat.

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"Thank you for the food, Kasi. You may continue your training with your teacher now." Kasi was shocked for a second. A dismissal? Didn't she hear me?

 

"Uhm, Lillian Sedai, you are supposed to be my teacher." She gave the other woman the letter she carried. She wasn't quite sure, but the Aes Sedai actually seemed disturbed by her presence. "Saline Sedai sent me to find you and I ended up with the food trying to do just that."

 

Not sure what else to say she sunk back into silence. Shifting her feet uneasily as the Aes Sedai looked at the letter. She tried to pay attention to something else. Looking around the training yard she saw that another match had begun already. This time a sword master and a trainee. They were using wooden swords and the poor boy looked scared to death as the older man gave him instructions while they were fighting. Sympathizing with the boy at the moment she looked away again to the Aes Sedai who were no longer watching the match, but instead chatting with warders and others who looked to be much more experienced with their weapons. Is that how they pick a Warder? Hanging all over their arms?

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