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DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

Loyalty Priorities


Asfaloth
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Two hours before dawn found Shawn running laps around the Yard. It was sometime after the fifth lap that he actually gained conscious control of himself. After over eight months of training his muscles had developed a memory of their own. His body woke naturally hours before the sun to begin the workout that he'd been assigned after his first day with Corin. This workout included running, pushups, situps, and pullups. Shawn himself had added swimming as well. After all of that he would go through the sword forms with each hand and both together.

 

Today was to be different though. Yesterday he'd realized that even after increasing the laps he ran and swam and the repetitions of his exercises he was still finishing his workout in less than half the time it used to take. He was encouraged by this but knew he needed to push himself further. Today he planned to double everything he did in his workout.

 

When he finsihed his circuit of land exercises he was exhausted, and he still had the swimming and sword-work left to go.

 

Halfway through his laps in the lake, he was truly regretting the decision to double his workout. But he persevered, and in fact pushed himself harder to finish faster.

 

Dragging himself out of the water he found the practice lathes he'd brought and pushed his weary body through the sword forms he'd learned so far. After finsihing the forms with a single sword, first one hand and then the other, he knew he'd had enough. But, as he leaned over to pick up the second lathe and go on to breakfast, he saw Corin out of the corner of his eye.

 

Shawn tried to hide the realization that he was being watched and appear as though he'd merely been catching his breath as he grabbed the second sword and went through the forms a few more times with both hands.

 

He finished up facing Corin. Shawn feigned surprise at seeing him there, not hard since they didn't usually meet until after breakfast. "Good morning. Plan to join me for breakfast or was there something else you had planned for today?"

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The shrill call of morning birds in song to each other carried in the still air of early morning; subtle shades of pink and orange still vaguely noticeable in the brightening sky of dawn. Mornings were still an enjoyed welcome to Corin after so many years in the Tower. The delicate blue and black wings of a butterfly stretched out across the vibrant tangerine peddles of some unknown flower in the garden before his eyes. Each morning since well into his training he came here to mediate in the Void. Lonrick had taught him the basics he needed to use it, but hinted and displayed such immeasurable mastery of it’s true potential. A potential that Corin hungered for and strove to reach.

 

Rising from the soft grass, the butterfly already in flight from his movements, his eyes trailed its jittery progression across several bushes; leaves deep green with a lush sheen. He had a mentee to surprise this morning and time was slipping quickly away on him. He often observed their progress from shadows and distance, ensuring that they maintained the structured schedule he had outlined them to; gauged their progress and when he should test them again or offer words and guidance.

 

The thought drew forth another, a strong seemingly gentle man who held discipline in high regard. A man Corin held in high regard and even to this day still missed. Reikan had been his mentor when he arrived at the Tower, had become like a father to him and a model to his method of teaching in many instances. It was through that, combined with some of the demands of a Green that seemed to have his fate tight in hand, that he was dropping in on Shawn unrepentantly today. Though this time it may start in the shadows he would ensure the boy knew he was there.

 

Arriving at the tree line’s edge near the pond he surveyed his mentee’s work in the forms as he worked one hand and then the other. Good ….. he is making very good progress. This one has potential. As Shawn bent to retrieve the second lathe he seemed to pause before righting and working through some forms with both in hand. A smile grew on Corin’s face as he weighed the motions carefully. Surely the boy had seen him and knew he was watching, yet for all appearance you would believe him to have not noticed. Either he is getting better then I suspected at the game or he needs a great deal more training in observation. It would take little time questioning him to work out the truth; skills Corin had been learning to master for years now.

 

But that was not the need right now; there was a more pressing goal to strive for. Stepping out into the light of day he moved to stand just out of the boys reach as he completed the movements and stopped facing him. Suppressing a small smile at his appearance of surprise whether it was real or not. “Good morning. Plan to join me for breakfast or was there something else you had planned for today?" Corin motioned to the pathway as he shook his head, “walk with me Shawn. I thank-you for your offer, but I am afraid breakfast will have to wait for both of us this morning.†He glanced quickly over to the boy walking along beside him before continuing with a slight curl to the corners of his mouth; eyes surveying the trees around them idly. “There is much to know in becoming a Tower Guard. Much needs to be understood for those chosen to protect the lives of Aes Sedai. Your training is coming along well,†drawing a pause out for the boy to feel proud of his accomplishments so far. The smile that bloomed on his face and lit his eyes said as much. “But, there is more to this job then mere physical skill. You have to have an understanding of why an opponent might react a certain way, why an enemy might position their men is such a way for battle. Why a certain weapon might be better then another for the same task. For this you must begin to understand history, lessons learned and losses felt.â€

 

As they cleared the pathway and entered the training yard, Corin stopped and faced the boy a stern lecturing mask in place on his face, authority and command supporting tones for his words. “You will go to the Tower library. There you will research the loss of a great army, you will know for our next meeting what strategy the Manetheren army used to defend it’s home, and why it failed.†Puzzlement was thick in the boy’s eyes as he faced him and Corin chuckled inside. Sometime this really was a fun sport in a way. “If you remain here looking at me all day you will find your bell rumbling will wake the night watch. On your way …. You have little time before I find you.†With that the boy was off at a run for the tower library, Corin silently chuckling as he watched the boys back grow smaller and the distance between them greater.

 

 

Corin Danveer

Tower Guard

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“Walk with me Shawn. I thank-you for your offer, but I am afraid breakfast will have to wait for both of us this morning.†No breakfast? Of course it would be this day that Corin came to steal him away from his breakfast.

 

“There is much to know in becoming a Tower Guard. Much needs to be understood for those chosen to protect the lives of Aes Sedai. Your training is coming along well." Then again, maybe it was a good day for Corin to have watched him training. He knew he was improving but he was hard pressed to determine what his mentor thought. He couldn't quite keep a grin from spreading across his face, Corin's regard meant that much to him.

 

But Corin wasn't finished, of course. “But, there is more to this job then mere physical skill. You have to have an understanding of why an opponent might react a certain way, why an enemy might position their men is such a way for battle. Why a certain weapon might be better then another for the same task. For this you must begin to understand history, lessons learned and losses felt. You will go to the Tower library. There you will research the loss of a great army, you will know for our next meeting what strategy the Manetheren army used to defend it’s home, and why it failed.â€

 

Manetheren? Shawn had heard the name mentioned with reverence around the Yards occassionally but knew nothing about it. He wasn't even sure where it was. For that matter, he'd only been to the Tower lirary once before. Not that he didn't like to read. Actually he enjoyed it immensly. He craved the knowledge that books provided. It was just that he'd been so focused on his weapons training that he hadn't gotten to the library since he'd first come to the Tower. Shawn was pretty sure he knew how to get to the library but once there he wouldn't know where to begin to find this information. For that matter Corin hadn't even said how long he would have to complete this assignment.

 

“If you remain here looking at me all day you will find your bell rumbling will wake the night watch. On your way …. You have little time before I find you.†He was right, though Shawn suspected he was having at least a little fun at his expense as he watched him run away.

 

Shawn made his way to the library as quick as he could. He thought about stopping at the mess hall on the way but Corin must have planned for that as it was now in the opposite direction of where he was going. He would just have to do without.

 

Soon he reached the door to the library and he stopped outside for a few moments to compose himself before entering. Once inside he was quickly overwhelmed by the sheer size of the library and number of books that it held. He despaired of ever finding what he was looking for. Just then he saw an Aes Sedai of the brown Ajah sitting at a desk. As it was evident that she was there to assist any newcomers in their research Shawn felt no qualms in seeking her help. Besides, Corin had not said he needed to do it on his own.

 

The sister led him to a table and directed him to sit while she found book after book that she thought might contain the information he was looking for. As the pile kept growing something caught Shawn's attention. There were hushed whispers coming from a corner nearby. Peering through the darkness he saw two sisters with their heads together. He tried to puzzle out what might have been happening between them when he realized that the one helping him had asked a question.

 

Turning back he noticed that the pile of books for him to wade through had grown significantly. It now covered almost the entire table. There were books specifically talking about the kingdom of Manetheren, books about strategy, books about the Trolloc Wars, and many more. HE thanked the Aes Sedai for her help and grimly set about the task he was set.

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Christine gasped in horror. This could not have happened. Not now! Not after everything she had done... But her friend merely nodded her head. How could her letter have gone astray? How could a stupid novice mistake Green Ajah for Gray Ajah? That letter could be anywhere! Any if someone found it that wasn’t supposed to... there would be hell to pay.

 

She shook her head, and her friend rushed off. Two nights before, Christine had written a letter, explaining in detail about the plans of the Modernists. It was meant to go to her Captain General, Sirayn, but at the moment, she was more than certain that Jaydena’s spy was watching her, just to make sure that she would not switch her alliances. It was hard being a spy that was double crossing. Her true alliance was with Sirayn, and if Jaydena found out... she would disappear from the tower.

 

So, of course, to make it so that no one saw her anywhere NEAR Sirayn’s, Christine had given the letter to a novice, after putting a lock on it that only an Aes Sedai could open, and told her to take it to the Green Ajah Halls and take it to Sirayn. How could the child have taken it to Gray? Her friend was one of Sirayn’s followers, and said she saw the girl take it to the Gray Ajah halls... this had to be a joke.

 

So of course, Christine had to get it back. If anyone found out... then there would be question of trouble in the Green Ajah, then wondering what these plans are... and a total conspiracy would come out. It was horrid, and Christine felt her heart drop. She had to find the novice, figure out where the letter went, and get it back. But there was no way in the world she could do it herself, that would bring questions.

 

Christine turned from her corner, wondering who to ask. It had to be someone that would keep their mouth shut. Accepted tended to gossip, and a novice had already messed up for her. It had to be someone else... perhaps a recruit... but ever since her own scandal a few years before, Christine didn’t hold much power around the green ajah... it would be years yet before she was given the respect she properly deserved.

 

And her eyes set on him. A trainee. They knew to keep their mouth shut, and he seemed to just be fooling around books. He should be out training instead of reading. Well, she would train him now- train him to get her what she wanted, and to keep his mouth shut afterwards. She walked by him, and picked him up by his shirt, and said, “Keep your mouth shut, and come with me.â€

 

He stumbled up, and she led him by his shirt down the hall, up a stair well, and then to an empty class room. No one was around, and she was grateful for that. If anyone had seen her, more than likely, Sirayn would find out, and then Christine would have to explain her mistake... she didn’t want to do that one.

 

She shut the door behind him, and he tried to protest as she put her hand over his mouth, and said, “Shut it, anyone could be listening.†He nodded his head, and she wrapped a weave around the room, warding out any listeners. She looked around the classroom, shut all the windows, then turned back to the trainee who stared at her, confused.

 

“What is your name?†He answered, and she nodded. “My name is Christine, and I am a Green Sister. I have a problem. At this moment, there is a letter floating around the Gray Ajah, and it belongs to the Greens. You must keep this quiet, and do exactly as I say. I need you to go to the novice quarters, and ask for Elyna. Do not go in, or you will be in trouble. Just wait for her to come to you.â€

 

“Then, when she comes, ask her to whom she took the letter that was given to her by Christine Sedai. She will tell you. Come back here, and tell me who it was. Then we shall see about what I need next.†He nodded his head. “Any questions? If not, run boy, because who knows when that letter will be opened.†He nodded, turned, and ran.

 

 

 

ooc: ok, the novice can say anything, just pick any random name out of your head to say is the Gray sister. It doesnt matter. Just TPC the novice. Hope this is ok so far and don’t worry, we will get all the posts we need out of this.

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Shawn was nearly halfway through the second book--scanning only at this point, he'd read when he got close to what he was looking for. The first book he'd chosen had been completely useless to his search and so far this one didn't provide much hope of being any better. Suddenly he was yanked out of his chair by the collar of his shirt.

 

Sitting on the ground now he looked up and was surprised to see one of the two Aes Sedai he'd seen arguing in the corner earlier. What could she want with him? He was going to bow and ask when she commanded, "Keep your mouth shut, and come with me."

 

Well, Shawn knew better than to argue with any woman when she was in that kind of mood. It was usually easiest to just appease them as quick as possible and sort it out later. He figured the sisters were no exception and followed her to what seemed an empty classroom.

 

At this point he decided he'd try to set things aright and see what she wanted. Only, before he could speak she had her hand over his mouth and was again speaking to him. "Shut it, anyone could be listening." Interesting. Who was she hiding from? Another sister? He'd heard Tower politics were fierce but he'd never imagined they'd resort to this type of behaviour.

 

"What is your name?"

 

"My name is Anwashawn Ellasser. You may call me Shawn. And you are?"

 

"My name is Christine, and I am a Green Sister. I have a problem. At this moment, there is a letter floating around the Gray Ajah, and it belongs to the Greens. You must keep this quiet, and do exactly as I say. I need you to go to the novice quarters, and ask for Elyna. Do not go in, or you will be in trouble. Just wait for her to come to you."

 

Okay, that didn't seem too hard. He could run this small errand for her and still do the research Corin asked of him. Only, why couldn't she do this herself?

 

"Then when she comes, ask her to whom she took the letter that was given to her by Christine Sedai. She will tell you. Come back here, and tell me who it was. Then we shall see about what I need next." What she needed next? How long was this going to take? Did she think he was a servant that he would drop everything to run these errands for her? Then again, as a Tower Guard it would be his duty to serve the Aes Sedai unquestioningly. Very well. He nodded to show he understood what she needed.

 

"Any questions? If not, run boy, because who knows when the letter will be opened."

 

Well. It looks like the research would have to wait. What could be in that letter to cause such a fuss? For that matter, where were the Novice's Quarters? He thought he remembered enough from what the other trainees had said to find it but the Tower was so big he hoped he didn't get lost.

 

Eventually, after a few wrong turns, he made it to the entrance of the Novice's Quarters. Unfortunately there was no one about outside their rooms. He considered calling out for the girl but he didn't want to disturb anyone unneccessarily. He decided to wait a few minutes first. Soon enough he saw a girl in a white dress leave one of the rooms and come toward him.

 

"Excuse me, I'm a trainee I'm looking for a novice named Elyna. Can you find her for me?"

 

"I am Elyna, but I don't believe we've met before. What do you need?" She was the one he needed? The Creator must have been guiding him this day.

 

"I have been sent by Christine Sedai. She gave you a letter and needs to know who you delivered it to."

 

"I delivered it to the Gray Ajah's quarters just as she told me to. I believe it was Allissa Sedai that took it."

 

"Thank you. Have a nice day."

 

And with the answer he needed so quickly procured Shawn raced back to the room where he'd seen the Green Sister earlier. She was still there waiting for him. As soon as he caught his breath he reported to her exactly what Elyna had said, verbatim.

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Christine waited for the boy to return. Light, anyone could have that note by now. And she meant anyone! And word of traveled fast in the tower… if it was in the hands of one of those flirty grays… they would tell the world, and Christine would be ruined, as would half the members of the Green Ajah. Everyone’s reputation would be in shambles… all because of a silly novice. She waited, and when the door opened, she saw it was the boy, Shawn. She let him catch his breath, then dragged the words out of him.

 

“Well, who was it? Who did she give it to?†He repeated back the name, and Christine almost fell over. Allissa… oh light, it couldn’t have been any worse. She was surely going to be ruined from this one. Perhaps getting the letter back wouldn’t be that hard for the young trainee, however.

 

She turned to him, and spoke slowly and clearly. “Listen to me. Go to the Gray Ajah quarters, and ask for Allissa. If she isn’t in there, ask where she is. She might be teaching a class or something, I do not know. But, whatever she is doing, go find her. Tell her that you need the letter, just make up something. Tell her that the note was no longer important, or that it was just about some novice and it was sent to the wrong person. But whatever you do, do not mention my name or what is in that letter.â€

 

He nodded and ran off again, and Christine sat down to wait. How could she have been such a fool?

 

Ooc: ok, add some bit of difficulty to it… say, she is in a class, or that she wont give you the letter or something. Make it so that you have to struggle for the letter.

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"Listen to me. Go to the Gray Ajah quarters, and ask for Allissa. If she isn’t in there, ask where she is. She might be teaching a class or something, I do not know. But, whatever she is doing, go find her. Tell her that you need the letter, just make up something. Tell her that the note was no longer important, or that it was just about some novice and it was sent to the wrong person. But whatever you do, do not mention my name or what is in that letter."

 

And he was off again. He only hoped this went as easy as the last errand had. He needed to get back to his research. Corin had not said when he would come by for the answer and that only served to make Shawn nervous. What if he came before he finished the research? What if he came while he was still out running silly errands for an Aes Sedai? What if he'd already come? Shawn thought he might be understanding and forgiving of his failure if he said he was helping a Sister but he couldn't do that, as she'd sworn him to secrecy.

 

By the time he reached the Gray Ajah quarters his head was throbbing with worry. He had taken three steps in when he realized where he was. Luckily noone had seen him and he jumped nack to stand outside their hall. He called out, "Hello! Allissa Sedai?"

 

Receving no answer he continued calling until finally a Sister came into the hall from one of the rooms close by. "Excuse me, ma'am. I'm looking for Allissa Sedai. Can you tell me where I might find her?"

 

"I might, if I even knew who you were."

 

"Pardon my thoughtlessness. My name is Anwashawn. I am a trainee here at the Tower. I have been sent to find Allissa Sedai. Can you please tell me where I might find her?"

 

"That's better. Unfortunately you just missed her. She's just left to teach a class of novices. If you hurry you might cactch up to her before she begins, otherwise you'll have to wait until she's finished to conduct your business with her."

 

Having procured directions and given his thanks Shawn raced off again. He was dismayed to see, as he made his way back toward the library, that the Tower was coming alive with activity as more and more of its inhabitants began their day. Shawn was dismayed by this. It was certainly not how he would have preferred to be seen. Wet with water and sweat he was dressed in pants and shirt that both had holes in them and he was barefoot. Corin had not given him time to change after his workout, probably assuming it didn't matter what he wore as he'd only be in the library.

 

Only he was not just in the library. He was running all around the Tower on a series of errands that he couldn't even tell anyone about if questioned. How were any of these women ever going to trust him with their safety given this first impression?

 

Regaining the library he found the hall off the North side and saw a Sister with a gray fringed shawl step into a classroom. He continued on, hoping that she was early and her students hadn't arrived yet.

 

Shawn took a moment to compose himself as best he could before he entered the room. He breathed a sigh of relief when he saw that they were the only two people in the room. "Excuse me. Would you be Allissa Sedai?"

 

"I am. What do you want, boy? I have a class to teach here."

 

"I understand that ma'am and I will make this as quick as I can. I'm a trainee here and I have been sent to retrieve a letter given to you by mistake. A novie named Elyna handed you a letter that was intended for aomeone else. If you could just give me the letter I'll deliver it to proper recipient and be out of your hair."

 

"I have the letter here with me, but tell me why I should give it to you? This seems like it must be a rather interesting letter for someone to send you through all this trouble to get it."

 

"Oh no Ma'am, it's not very interesting at all. In fact, that's why I was sent to retrieve it. It was simply a note on the behaviour of a novice. Apparently this behaviour has already been addressed and as such the one who wrote the letter did not want to disturb you any further."

 

Shawn hoped she'd believe him. This was the only time he had lied to an Aes Sedai and he prayed he'd never have to do it again. Finally she relented and gave him the letter. He left just as the novices began arriving for their class. Another time he might have stayed to admire return the glances and smiles they passed him but he had other things to attend to.

 

"Here is the letter, Christine Sedai. May I return to my studies now?"

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“Here is the letter, Christine Sedai. May I return to my studies now?"

 

Christine smiled as he handed her the letter. She channeled the revealing spell and opened it. Thank the light, it was untampered. She sealed it again, and put another weave on it. Handing the letter to the boy, she led him behind her. “Come, we are going to the Green Ajah quarters. You must give the letter to Sirayn Sedai. I will point her office to you.â€

 

He followed her, reluctantly, and when they got to her office, Christine pointed to it. “There. Now, go in there, and tell her it is an important message from Christine Segreto. Can you remember that? Go, take it to her, then I might let you return to your work. If she has a reply, bring it to me, and fast.â€

 

Christine turned away from the boy, and went to talk to a sister standing just down the way. She hoped that all of her trouble wasn’t for nothing.

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It seemed he would have to follow through with one more task before she would let him return to the assignment Corin had given him. So be it. Somehow he had gone from a trainee learning the art of weapons to an errand-boy for a very young Sister. Fine. He plastered a smile on his face and sketched a mocking bow to Christine before entering the office of Sirayn Sedai.

 

Upon entering the room he made a much more authentic bow and introduced himself. "Sirayn Sedai, I'm not sure if you remember me but I'm training to be a Tower Guard. I have come to deliver a letter to you from a Sedai named Christine Segretto. She said to tell you that it is very important."

 

He was unable to read from her expression whether she remembered having met him that first night he spent in Tar Valon these many months ago but she listened to what he had to say and gestured for the letter to be placed on her desk. He turned to leave after doing so but was stopped. Sirayn cleared her throat to get his attention and pointed at a seat across from her.

 

Shawn sat while she read through Christine's letter and waited patiently while she wrote another in reply. Sirayn commanded him to deliver it with all due speed and returned to the papers at her desk.

 

Shawn walked back out to the hallway and saw that Christine was engaged in conversation with another sister. He made sure that she saw him slip the letter into his pocket and then slipped down the hall. Returning to the classroom they'd begun this in he waited as patiently as he could for her to extract herself from the other Sedai and return.

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Christine waited, and watched. She saw him leave the office, and the letter in his hand. It went into his pocket, and he ran off to the classroom. She pardoned herself from the sister, and quickly went after the boy. He got into the classroom, she could hear the door shut, and she half ran to the classroom, opened the door, and grabbed the note from his hands.

 

Channeling and unlocking the words inside, her eyes scanned over the letter as her heart raced. She let out a sigh of relief… for that night, she would not be entering the lion’s den. Thank the light that Sirayn had gotten this note in time, she had been about to make a fatal decision.

 

Turning to the boy that stood there, she smiled, and thanked him. “There are many people that are greatful to you and the service you did today. How about we get you back to the library?†He nodded, and she led the way. As they walked, she began asking him questions. Turned out, his mentor was Corin, and he was as good as bonded to Sirayn.

 

She stopped him, and looked him straight in the eyes. “You must swear to tell no one, expeccially Corin. Do you promise?†He nodded his head, and she continued down the hall, leading him to the library.

 

She opened the door with a breeze of air, and as he sat down at his seat, she glanced over the books. “What exactly are you reading about?†He told her of the assignment, and she nodded. Leaving him there for a moment, she went back along some books, until she found the right one. Opening, she took it back to him, the page beginning with telling of Manetheran. “When I was your age, I worried about battles and such. That is why I am a battle sister… studying battle arts is what I do.â€

 

She left the book in his hands, and winked at him. “You be good, little trainee. The tower has eyes in places that you cant even see.†And with that, she left.

 

 

 

ooc: now you, then corin, and a final post by you. this should meet your requirement, i do believe

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Fortune prick me there it was. The answer he was looking for was right there in the page she laid out in front of him. Maybe his time with her hadn't been wasted after all.

 

He had to wonder why she had further insisted upon his silence in regards to his mentor. he had already stated several times his agreement to not share their experiences with anyone else but then she had made a special point of not telling Corin. Was all of this related to his mentor in some way?

 

Speaking of Corin brought all his earlier anxieties back. Shawn couldn't help but remember that Corin had not said when they would meet again, only that they would. What if he had already missed it? But he had no way of knowing that.

 

Well, he had his answer now and Corin hadn't said that he had to wait here until he was found. In fact Corin hadn't said where they would meet at all. He had instead said that he would find Shawn.

 

So Shawn made his way to the mess hall to enjoy a very late breakfast. Though truly it was more like an early dinner as he had missed breakfast and lunch by running errands for the Sedai.

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The deep booming rumble of a thunderstorm in the distant horizon echoed oddly and hollow under the bright sunshine bathing the yard in it’s radiant light. But it reflected harshly in the face of a stalwart guard as he made his way along the beaten path leading to the Tower; heels of his boots leaving a slight indentation in the packed surface of the path. His stride solid and purposeful almost militaristic in gait and force spoke of agitation. The brilliant rays from the burning globe already past it’s mid point only added to the look of displeasure; casting harsh shadows across a hard set face, eyebrows drawn down. If I find him flittering away his study time to prance around with a novice in the Tower he will not see his bunk for a week.

 

A brief vision of the garden warm and bright; vibrant colors swaying softly to the music of a slight rippling breeze and the soft tender touch of a Red hair women pressed close to him. An angry growl rumbled low and deep in his throat as he crushed the picture viciously under heel in his mind. Not now Lavinya, I have more pressing matters to deal with. Your spell will have to wait. His boots rang out from the hard hallway floors and echoed ahead of him as he proceeded through the tower pausing only long enough to offer respectable recognition o the few sisters he passed. Looks from impassive eyes offered reflections of a face chiseled in stone. A simple task, research the books and find a simple answer. It should take the better part of a day for a trainee to find, especially if they inquired of a Brown for assistance. Even Dragonmount it’s self will not be a high enough climb if I find him in novice quarter. Turning down another passage he came to the entrance of a wing forbidden to trainees, forbidden to any man with out very good reasoning.

 

“You … girl,†his voice came out low and sharp edged like a sword. “I’m looking for a trainee, he goes by Shawn; barefoot, ragged looking. Have you seen him?†The novice looked back with a shocked expression as plain on her face as the white of her dress, mouth half open. “I warn you, don’t play games with me I am not in the mood for silly childhood antics. If I feel for even the slightest reason you are hiding something related to him I will have you in front of the MoN before your feet can touch the floor. Are we understood?†Her head shook quickly up and down but her tongue remained frozen for several more moments before an answer squeaked to existence between them. “No … no sir. I have not seen nor heard of any trainee in the wing.†She remained frozen in place under the glaring stare for the span of several heartbeats before Corin offered her a nod of his head.

 

Spinning on his heels he stormed back down the hall toward the library. He paused briefly in acknowledgement of a slender young Aes Sedai that seemed familiar to him for some reason. Something about her eyes had him looking back at her trying to put name to face before he continued. The new puzzle channeled some of the energy heating his anger away to its resolve and lightened the hard fall of his steps. The library was a quiet and organized bustle of activity. It took Corin little time to find a Brown Aes Sedai and locate where Shawn had been sitting. But the table now sat empty save for the mountain of books. The puzzle thickened in his head as he let his eyes wander over the books. His hand tracing lightly over one in particular interesting. His eyes traced over the room once more. Perhaps I need to approach this a little different, his finger tapped on the cover several times before he noticed the side look from a Brown a table over. With a brief smile and nod he slipped back out and headed back to the yard.

 

With the late after noon hour and the time he had collected his mentee this morning it was a safe bet the boy had gone for food, a grin cracking the edges of his face. Perhaps it was time to have a little chat and see how the boy had made out. Slipping into the mess hall it took only a quick glance to find him; it would be a couple of hours before the dinner rush began. Walking up to the table he acknowledged the boy as he looked up from his meal. “Seems you have finished sooner then I expected Shawn. Perhaps I underestimated your skills at research, yes?†He studied the boy’s face but continued before he could answer. “Since you are finished I’m sure you can enlighten me in the answers to my earlier questions.†Leaning on a support column as if getting comfortable to listen to Shawn’s rendition he added one more piece to the game. Just as Shawn was about to begin his explanation Corin address one more sentence to him. As if in passing conversation, words with no great meaning. “Funniest thing happened while you where studying, I was informed there was a trainee in the novice quarters, ragged clothes and bare feet. You would think a mentor would keep a closer eye on his charge.â€

 

With careful precision he used the tools Sirayn had grown in him. Studying the boy from the corner of his eye as he rested at his ease. His mind working out what purposes the boy could possible have in novice beside the hormonal one. Words filtered through his head in Sirayn’s flat instructional tones “sometime what is not said is more important then what is said..â€

 

OOC: Don't want to make it too ease on ya :twisted:

 

Corin Danveer

Tower Guard

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Shawn had his answer formed and ready when Corin's final words sank through. Somehow he'd been found out. Somehow Corin knew he'd been somewhere other than the library. He knew it was all too good to be true, thinking that he'd gotten back before his mentor came looking for him. Now what was he to do? The Aes Sedai had sworn him to secrecy.

 

The silence had drawn out too far. His very lack of response was as good as an admission of guilt. It was time for some damage control. "You shouldn't be too hard on the mentor. Perhaps the trainee had good reason to be there." No, he needed to be honest. Corin had taught him much during his months here, he owed him the truth. Or at least as much of it as he was free to share.

 

"The truth, as I'm sure you've guessed, is that yes it was me you heard about. But before you get too upset, please allow me to explain what I can of the incident."

 

Shawn took Corin's silence as assent for him to carry on. "First of all, my presence in the novice quarters. I assure you, I was not actually in the novice quarters. I made sure to stay outside in the hall. That may not count for much but I want you to know, I broke no rules today."

 

"Second, my speedy research. As I'm sure you knew when you gave me the assignment, on my own it would have taken at least to the end of the day to find your answer, if not longer. I will admit to having had some help in the matter. My presence outside the novice quarters was partial payment toward getting that help."

 

Now the hard part. He could tell his answers so far had intrigued his mentor. If he continued with the open and honest approach he might not suffer any consequences. Alas, he could not do that. "Before you ask, I cannot tell you who gave me the help. Nor can I tell you why I was in the hall outside the novice quarters. Nor can I tell you what else I was doing instead of my research. What I can tell you is the answer you sent me to find."

 

And so Shawn shared all that he had learned about Manetheren's final battle. He could read nothing in Corin's expression. He could not be certain how this would end. All he did know was that no matter what he was asked he could share no more than he already had.

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The silence and stunned expression confirmed his assumption in his mentee’s involvement in something earlier today. The underlying question was what, and who? He should have the boy in the yard just on the silence alone. But he was a patient man, and the chance he might gain further information from this stayed any judgement he might believe warranted. An eyebrow twitched as he began in a pattern that spoke of evasion. But it was short lived before the boy stepped forward as a man and accepted responsibility for his actions. Corin only nodded acknowledgement to what the boy said, allowing him to explain the circumstances surrounding his disobedience.

 

Intrigue swirled with possibilities as he listened to the story his mentee laid out. It was obvious from the surroundings and the involvement of Novice that this some how involved an Aes Sedai, but which one and for what purpose. It agitated him slightly that one had begun to put hooks in his mentee, annoyed him that the vultures could not wait until he reached the level of Tower Guard and recognised as a tool the Tower could use. The boy should consider himself very lucky he did not indeed enter the Novice quarters.

 

Who would have interest in him and what barter had taken place to secure the answers Shawn was offering him? It had taken Corin several days of searching to find that book that had been on the centre of the table when he went looking for Shawn. Definitely an Aes Sedai’s touch was in this. He should still punish the boy for his disobedience, there was little likely hood he would get the Aes Sedai’s name from him and really he did not deserve to be put to that task. As for the punishment; visions of a battered and bruised boy being lead off by the Mistress of Trainee’s flashed into his head. I pay my debits Shawn, whether the receiver knows there was a debit or not. Consider my debit to you paid. Shawn had come to his rescue during a spar with a particular woman Corin still had great contempt for. The memories still hurt Corin to a degree; the boy was his responsibility, but what was done was done. He remained at ease leaning on the column as he listened to the rest of the lesson Shawn had learned from the books. But his mind continued to work the puzzle, who?

 

 

OOC: Well done, consider yourself raised :D

 

Corin Danveer

Tower Guard

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