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DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY
SerenaMorrigan

The Weight of the World (OPEN for Main Plotline)

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I've been living for so long,

many seasons have passed me by.

I've seen kingdoms through ages

rise and fall, I've seen it all.

 

I've seen the horror, I've seen the wonders

happening just in front of my eyes.

Will I ever, will I never free myself by making it right?  ~ Jillian, by Within Temptation

 

Rain pelted at the glass window pane, and the howling wind swept currents of debris at the White Tower walls. The elements making their personal attack on the fragile-appearing fortress that held the most powerful women in the world. Cracks in the stone allowed the wind to infiltrate the structure in the form of cool drafts. Commonly, the time of year was often warm and often made some of the upper rooms slightly stuffy, which was one of the reasons why Serena had made her way down to the Library.

 

Light, if I keep spending all of my time down here, they’ll think I chose the wrong Ajah. Tilted emerald eyes sparkled, as she thought.

 

Well, let her Sisters think what they wanted, it hardly had much of an affect on her as it was. Leaning back in her chair, she ran a small ivory hand through short, raven-coloured hair, and sighed. Her back ached from pouring over a book on the subject of Saidin, the Taint, and madness. Laying on the table beside that one, was a heavy book on the effects of the Shadow on certain empires. Shadar Logoth had been a subject of interest of hers since she was an Accepted, and until she had made a trip through Aridhol, she had had no idea what had occurred to that city until she had actually experienced it.

 

Her mind would often travel back to the dark tunnels beneath the city, where her group had let her be Healed by Dreadlord. Rasputin, chills shimmied up her spine and revulsion boiled in her blood, as she thought of him. Granted, they had not had much of a choice. More than likely, she would have died if he hadn’t; however, merely the thought of his tainted hands touching her, made her want to sick-up. How many years had she fought against the Shadow, just to be Healed by one of the Dark One’s minions? And honestly, if she really let her mind go there, had the man been all that disgusting? No, he had not. Acidity of bile rose into her throat as she thought of their similarities.

 

Do not let yourself go there, Serena! You are nothing like him!

 

Shaking her head, she tried to stamp out her thoughts, and re-direct them to what was going on in the present.

 

Times were troubled, now. In the passed few years the weather patterns had changed for the worse, more food was spoiling, Bubbles of Evil were erupting at a more frequent pace, governments were becoming more corrupted, leaders were falling to the hands of Darkfriends. Was the Dark One’s prison so shallow? Was his grip tightening on the world and the Pattern as a whole? Was the Last Battle approaching more quickly than any of them could handle? Even the numbers of initiates in the White Tower was dwindling. Was the ability to channel the One Power being weaned out of existence?

 

A crack of thunder seemed to answer her question, and it caused her to furrow her brow. Perhaps the events in her life had caused her to become more depressed, maybe everything wasn’t as bad as it seemed; but as the Head of your Ajah, one needed to be prepared for things, and ask as many questions as possible. Besides, should she not be given some lee-way when it came to the life of an Aes Sedai? Yes, they needed to be hard, cool, manipulative, and strong; but was she not also a human woman? Was losing three Gaidin, a captive of the Dragon Reborn, being forcibly bonded to an Asha’man, losing a lover, and being Healed by a Dreadlord, not enough to make you want to curl up in a ball and scream?

 

Light, it seemed as if no one would be prepared for what might be to come, and here she was, sitting in a room full of books warming herself by the fire. “A bloody lot of good I’m doing just sitting here.” She murmured to herself. The duties of being the First Selector had required her to tie more strings to the inside of the White Tower, as opposed to being out traveling all of the time. Her decision had been appropriate, though. Her travels had practically dismantled her emotionally, and mentally; and it was her time to step up to action within the Ajah.

 

But what could she do? Where could she start? She had even let her teaching fall to the wayside. Yes, she knew that the numbers of novices were dwindling, but had she spent any time with them? What about the Accepted? When was the last time she had spoken with one and helped to guide them to her Ajah? That was a duty to your Ajah that one had to fulfill, and she had not engaged in that type of relation in quite some time.

 

Biting down on her lower lip, the Blue Sister pressed her palms down on her legs, brushing her black breeches free of any wrinkles. Why did it feel like the world was crumbling around her, and she had been thrust into a position to try and piece things back together? No, the Blue Ajah had chosen for her to be their Head because she was strong and capable.

 

But where should she start?

 

Serena Morrigan

Blue Ajah Head

 

 

OOC: Anyone can join. Please, come and play with me.  ;D

 

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Zarinen hugged her red fringed shawl tighter around her shoulders as she gave her companion a sour sideways glance. She knew it had been her own idea for the two of them to be seen together in public, but it curdled her tongue to have to give even the appearance of cordiality with a Green. A pity that Bonding kiss from Covai had wiped the involuntary, but perpetual, smile from her lips – it would have come in useful right now. She would just have to go for Aes Sedai serenity instead. Stifling a sigh, she stroked the velvet of her rose coloured dress over her thigh, trying to lose herself in the sensual pleasure of the material.

 

A blast of frigid air slipping through the cracks of the library walls disrupted her attempt to gain serenity, as they entered the room. She could have had a novice or Accepted bring her and Jaydena the relevant books, but killing two birds with one stone had seemed the logical thing to do. Besides, she would rather walk around in public than stay holed up in her quarters for one more candle mark with this woman.

 

She stiffened slightly as she recognised the lone occupant of the room they had entered. Well, not the woman herself per se, but her Ajah. Giving the Blue a chilly nod, she turned her attention to the hundreds of books and scrolls stacked against the walls. The space where she had last found the book she was looking for was conspicuously empty.

 

She gave Jaydena a puzzled look, then hastily scanned the rest of the shelf. “It was here somewhere…“ Zarinen glanced at the table the Blue was sitting at. A book about the effects of Shadow caught her eye, and even though she couldn’t make out which book the woman had open in front of her, she could make a logical deduction. 

 

Zarinen briefly contemplated just leaving and coming back at another time, but then she really recognised the Blue. Serena, wasn’t it? And hadn’t she been force bonded by an Asha’man? Her eyes narrowed as she regarded the Blue more closely. Yes, it was definitely that one. Her left hand fiddled with the pigeon egg sized ruby dangling in her cleavage as she weighed her options.

 

On the one hand, the Reds and Blues were almost constantly at each other’s throats, but on the other hand, weren’t she and Jaydena trying to find the Head of each Ajah? And here was a Blue who not only had experience of the matter which had brought this tenuous alliance between herself and Jaydena about, but seemed to be researching the matter too. A small toe in the door could lead to them finding their quarry.

 

After only a brief hesitation and a significant glance at Jaydena, she turned more fully towards the seated woman and essayed as friendly a smile as she could muster. It wasn’t much, but then, she wasn’t known for her friendliness. At least she wasn’t glaring at the woman. She hoped. “Good day, Sister. Is that ‘Saidin, the Taint, and Madness’ you have there?”

 

 

Zarinen Rafaliva

Red Highest

 

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She glanced at the woman walking next to her and wondered how she had ended up here. Zarinen had been fine with her until they reached the door to her office. As soon as they had left the Red Halls she had started in with her cold and aloof act again. Obviously it was an image she cultivated for the world around them, and the women of the Tower. She hadn't been nearly as cold, in fact Jaydena had even thought she might be a woman she could like, and now they were back to this. She shook her head and walked into the library with the other woman, glancing around she checked to see who was in the Tower and was happy to notice several Aes Sedai from different Ajahs as well as Novices, and Accepted. The more people that saw the Green hating Ajah Head with her the better, and quicker this all would be. Than maybe they could go back to her office and she could deal with the nicer woman and not this prissy one would stood next to her. She grimaced as the other woman sent her a small glare and turned to see her looking at Serena of the Blue Ajah.

 

Jade looked back the shelf for the book they had been going to do research with, hitting two birds with one stone. The book was missing from it's spot and she saw the Red looking over at Serena again and the open book in front of her. Serena must have the book they needed and wasn't this just the creator intervening, a Blue all by herself who they could test for information. They could check on the subject they had been conversing about and be seen in public together, and talk to Serena, this was indeed a red letter day. She smoothed a hand over the skirt she wore, a nervous gesture she had picked up since her face was burned. Jaydena never knew how someone was going to react to the burns on her face or the mask she wore. Some took it all in stride, some stared at her with pity, and some with horror. Serena wasn't one she had had much contact with so she didn't know how the other woman would react to her. Zarinen stepped forward and began to speak, “Good day, Sister. Is that ‘Saidin, the Taint, and Madness’ you have there?”

 

Jaydena Mckanthur

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Running her finger along the printed lines of the book before, Serena pursed her lips and pondered her subject matter. Although her bond to Arath had been broken months ago, she still wondered if there could have been any lasting affects. More than likely, it would be much like the bond between Warder and Aes Sedai. Only, the Taint of the Dark One hadn’t been laced into THAT. She huffed at her sarcastic thought, re-crossed her legs beneath the table, and leaned forward again. Tapping her lips softly as she read, the Blue could have lost herself in her studies, and she would have had she not felt as if she were being watched.

 

“Good day, Sister. Is that ‘Saidin, the Taint, and Madness’ you have there?”

 

Biting down on the inside of her lip in frustration, Serena cursed herself for not becoming more aware of her surroundings. Slowly, she let her tilted emerald eyes lift from the page, and she leaned backwards in her chair. Her head tilted to the side in her usual manner as she regarded the pair of women before her, and she began to wonder how she was going to go about this particular interaction. The rose coloured fabric before her gave way to the fringe of a red shawl as her eyes moved upwards. A Red, and Zarinen Sedai, at that. Her inner monologue depicted a tone that was not amused. The beautiful masked woman beside her, Jaydena Mckanthur.

 

From what Serena had been privy to hear, Zarinen didn’t not have a particular fond place for the Battle Ajah in her heart, so why was she cavorting about the Tower with her? Serena knew Jaydena Sedai, if only through Sirayn Simeone, and she had also remembered her before she had donned her masks. Still beautiful, mask or no. She regarded.

 

“Yes, it is.” The corner of her mouth crooked in a mock, half-smile, making Serena appear more fox-like than usual. “A wonderful book, at that. Oh, I’m sorry, were you looking for it?” Honestly, she could care less whether a woman from the Red Ajah wanted something she had; however, her intuition told her they were up to something, and the mischief-maker within her yearned for her to play.

 

Whatever these ladies were up to, Serena promised herself she’d find out.

 

 

Serena Morrigan

 

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Diplomacy wasn’t one of her strong points, and she wished Jaydena would take the lead here, but the woman seemed content to led her make the first moves. For the moment, at least.

 

Zarinen hesitated a brief second, pondering her options in how to deal with the Blue. She let herself feel the woman’s relative strength. A little bit stronger than Jaydena, a little bit less than herself. Not significant enough to make much of a difference, even if she wanted to go that route. To a degree they would all fall into the roles their relative strengths in the One Power dictated, enough to be civil to each other barring any other complications. How was one supposed to act towards another Ajah Head, anyway? There were no precedents, since as far as she knew, no two Heads had ever known about each other before. And of course, Serena wouldn’t know that she and Jaydena were … equals, and would therefore expect her to take the lead.

 

Deciding to act before her head burst from all these configurations, she spoke as she pulled out a chair and gestured for Jaydena to take one too, with a small half smile, half grimace to the Green which she hoped the woman took as apology for not according her all due respect. “I do hope you won’t mind us joining you? Perhaps we can pick your brains, instead of doing all the research ourselves again.”

 

She cocked her head at the woman seated opposite them. “I presume you are researching the effects of the Taint on those Bonded to a man who can channel. You have some first-hand experience of that, if I recall correctly?” She hoped the woman didn’t come right out and ask why a Green and a Red would be researching that topic. Together.

 

 

Zarinen Rafaliva

Red Highest

 

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