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Cor's Initiation Welcome to Shae'en M'Taal

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OOC: The stone dogs are a little different than the other Societies. We're doing our initiation into the society before the warrior training. Since you wish to be a Stone Dog and all are taught to fight from a young age I'm working under the assumption that your character has already learned all of the basic fighting skills. Your actual "Training" which will occur after your initiation will be society specific and help to advance your weapons score as advertised in the Aiel Policy post. So without further ado much of this post is simply you writting. If you look in the Off Site boards under the stone dogs there is a link with an Outline of the Initiation. I will reply shortly at most of the steps the rest is up to you. Here is the link http://aiel.aliciawilkerson.com/viewtopic.php?t=218


IC: Hung over, tired, and exceptionally bored was not a feeling any man enjoyed. It was to the Stone Dog sentry’s extreme pleasure that a young boy was coming closer to the gate. “Stop. What do you want?â€


OOC: Short and to the point...check the outline and have fun with step 1. Please be realistic though we've assumed you're a trained warrior you're no match for an entire society of trained brothers. They'll only beat you close to a bloody pulp! 8)

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  • 2 weeks later...

“Stop. What do you want?â€


Cor came to a halt and looked at the sentry who had spoken. Red-eyed and weary looking, the sentry appeared about to pass out, and if the smell of oos’quai was any indication, Cor knew why. “I seek admittance to Shae'en M'Taal,†he stated calmly.


The sentry nodded sluggishly, replying “I’ll get the society leader,†before turning toward the entry way. Sticking his head through the door, the sentry shouted “INITIATE!†and turned toward Cor, beginning to draw a knife as he did so.


Eyes going wide in surprise, Cor acted on instinct, dropping to a knee and punching the sentry in the groin. Hearing the footfalls of another attacker behind him, Cor pivoted and swept a leg behind the legs of a warrior who had just landed after leaping from the society’s rooftop. With that warrior momentarily taken care of, Cor looked back to the hung over sentry, now bent over and holding his crotch. Grabbing a handful of sand, Cor stood, connecting on the sentry’s chin with an uppercut as he did so.


More Stone Dogs were rapidly appearing, both from within the roof and from the surrounding area. Knowing there was no way to fight so many in the open, Cor knew his only chance, slight as it was to be sure, was to get inside the roof where only a handful of enemies could attack him at one time. Cor threw his handful of sand in the faces of several Aiel who were nearly on top of him after having leapt from windows and running up the path. In the brief moment this gained him, Cor turned once again to the now seriously hurting sentry, who was holding a fistful of blood over his mouth while with the other hand still gripping his groin. Cor grabbed the sentry with both hands and lunged forward toward the door of the Shae'en M'Taal roof, with the sentry between him and the other Stone Dogs.


Falling in a big pile of curses, elbows and knees with a double handful of Shae'en M'Taal just inside the entry way of the roof, Cor attempted to rise when, from behind, a large Stone Dog grabbed him by a leg. Cursing, Cor kicked the huge warrior in the face, feeling the nose break through his soft-soled boot. The huge warrior merely grunted at the pain, holding tightly to the leg while his brothers untangled themselves and others wiped sand from their eyes, all the while swiftly piling onto Cor’s prostrate body seemingly in an instant.


Unable to rise to his feet, Cor felt blows rain down on his body. Sensing the inevitable, Cor refused to give up. Once again, the sentry received the brunt of Cor’s wrath as the youth wrapped his arms around the neck of the bleeding Stone Dog lying beneath him in a choke hold. Rapidly losing consciousness from the severe beating, Cor smiled, knowing that he would help at least one of his enemies to wake from the dream with him.


OOC: hope you like it. :D

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OOC: I will be writing this post as Belran my NPC Society second.


The initiate had shown great resolve during the onslaught of Stone Dog members. The members of the society always took great pleasure in the ritual beating of new members. Xin and Belran stood on the balcony of their roof watching the fight progress. Belran reflected on the time when he had been the newest initiate into Shae’en M’Taal and had to play his part in the next part of the initiation. At that time it had been Xin who was undergoing the beating. They had become fast friends and rose through the ranks; Xin advancing slightly faster and naming Belran his second.


Now it was time; with Cor laying on the ground a bloody pulp from the beating the society had given him. Belran descended the stairs quickly and emerged from the door of the hold. “STOP†with the trained practice that only comes from many battles shared, a lifetime of bloodshed, and a brotherhood forged by fire everyone stopped. “You have shown you can stand against the onslaught; that you will not run. Now you must show your strength. You must go from the hold; you may take your weapons with you. You will run until sunrise and then turn around and return to the hold. You won’t stop or rest. Now go and return only when you have completed your journey.â€


OOC: Ok check the outline to see what you have to do.

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“STOP!†Cor vaguely noticed a voice shout from somewhere above him. Lying facedown on the ground, battered and bleeding, it was all he could do to hold onto the hazy form of consciousness that had returned to him.


“You have shown you can stand against the onslaught; that you will not run,†said a voice from right above him moments later. Rolling over onto his back, Cor looked up into the eyes of an Aiel he had never met before. “Now you must show your strength,†the unknown Aiel continued, as Cor struggled up to his knees. “You must go from the hold; you may take your weapons with you. You will run until sunrise and then turn around and return to the hold. You won’t stop or rest. Now go and return only when you have completed your journey.â€


Staggering to his feet, Cor laughed softly to himself. Running all night normally would have been no problem whatsoever, as he had done so countless times in the past. But now, keeping from falling down on his face seemed just about all he could manage. He somehow managed to stand up straight, however, and as quickly as he could manage, gathered his weapons and waterskin and made his way out of the hold, lumbering awkwardly with his stiff and sore body.


Glancing at the night sky, Cor knew that he had a long run in front of him. Just a couple of hours past dusk, the night was still very young. Shortly, however, his body returned to a vague semblance of normalcy. Years of running across the Threefold Land had hardened his muscles and shaped his body into incredible fitness, and with the warmth of the exercise loosening the grip of soreness, Cor lost himself in the joy of the run. It appeared none of his pain came from serious injury, or any broken bones, merely the agony of a severe thrashing.


Cor ran long into the night, his ground-eating strides covering the miles steadily until the sun peaked over a low range of mountains in the east. Turning without pause, Cor began the return trip sipping from his waterskin as he did so.


A couple of hours past sunrise, Cor noticed something unusual. In the shimmering heat waves ahead, he saw a lone figure staggering toward the hold. Cor surveyed the land around him suspecting a trap, but saw nothing out of the ordinary aside from the figure who had fallen now but not yet risen again. Closing the distance between them cautiously, with an arrow nocked and half drawn on his bow, Cor repeatedly scanned the nearby rocks, dips, and shrubs, carefully examining each for signs of any enemies. Seeing nothing, Cor strode up to the fallen warrior and saw for the first time that it was a Stone Dog, although one that he didn’t know. Looking him over for any wounds, Cor couldn’t find any sign of what ailed him.


Wasting no time, Cor again scanned the nearby area before re-casing his bow, placing his spears and buckler on the ground, heaving the man over his shoulder, picking up his weapons with his off hand, and making his way back toward the hold. Holding the unconscious man’s body on his shoulder proved burdensome, but the young warrior saw no other choice. If he left him in the Threefold Land in his condition, he would be dead before much longer. He only hoped that his society leader would understand his tardiness and not refuse to allow him to continue with the initiation.


Moving at a steady, if much slower, pace Cor pondered on what had caused a Stone Dog to be injured and alone, and relentlessly scanned the surrounding area for an ambush. Only his alertness gave him the split second necessary to avoid the archer who rose out of a shallow dip ahead of him and the arrow he loosed. Diving to the side, Cor rolled behind a good-sized rock before reaching out and dragging his fellow into cover. Peering around the bottom of the rocky outcrop, Cor saw the archer fitting another arrow to his bow. Quickly grabbing a fist -sized stone from the ground, Cor hurled it at the attacker’s head. Luckily it landed flush, and the bowman fell like a blacksmith’s hammer. Beginning to draw his knife in order to finish the job, Cor heard running in the distance behind him and looked over his shoulder. A handful of veiled enemies were running towards him.


Forgetting the knocked out archer, Cor calmly drew his bow, nocked an arrow and fired at the nearest enemy. For some reason, none of the other attackers were using their bows, but Cor simply thanked the light at his good fortune and hit his first target just below the rib cage. Swiftly going to ground, the half dozen or so ambushers disappeared behind cover. Cor knew if he stayed where he was his chances were slim, but the unconscious Stone Dog would certainly die. His only choice was to try and carry him toward some cover where he could make a stand.


As quickly as he could, Cor cased his spears and hoisted his spear brother onto his shoulder, keeping his bow in his other hand, and ran as fast as he could on toward the hold. Looking for any place to make a stand, Cor zigzagged his way between piles of brush, rocky outcrops, and strewn boulders. Peering again and again over his shoulders for signs of his attackers. Every so often one would pop out of the brush, and Cor would barely have time to get an arrow off before they would disappear like water in the sand. Cor suspected they were merely toying with him before killing him outright, but he refused to make it easy for them.


Staggering under his burden, Cor could just make out the silhouette of the hold in the distance as the sun’s rays tried to hold on against the coming darkness and thought he had a chance to make it when his attackers rose up around him. Dropping his passenger to the ground, Cor attacked. Clearly anticipating no such thing, the ambush party hesitated giving Cor a needed moment to close with nearest. Dashing toward him, Cor rolled at the last moment, pulling a dagger from his boot and stabbing the assailant in the foot. As the man bent over, screaming in pain, Cor rose with a knee to the face and felt the bones melt under the impact. Anticipating an attack from behind, Cor dove headfirst over the first attacker’s prostrate body with a somersault before rising with a spear in each hand. Cor counted only three remaining Aiel, not seeing the two he had taken out earlier.


The trio circled him as Cor spun around trying to keep all three in view. There was no doubt now, he was in big trouble, but trusting to the Light Cor refused to give in. Feinting at the two he could see, Cor gambled. Spinning quickly he leapt in the air, catching the third warrior in the temple as he had lunged forward. “The Light be praised,†Cor fervently thought at his good luck, as the Aiel dropped bonelessly to the ground. The two remaining Aiel split apart, trying to keep Cor in the middle, but the young warrior wasted no time. Charging the warrior to his left, Cor took a spear gash along the ribs but not before he closed the distance between them and felt his own spear go up and into the warrior’s right arm pit; a devastating injury. Spinning back to the remaining foe, Cor hurled the spear in his right hand at the chest of his adversary. Leaping to avoid the point spared the man’s life, but the blade caught him in the soft tissue just below his kneecap with a crippling blow.


Cor began to approach the down but not out Aiel who was down on one knee, cocking his remaining spear in order to end this foe’s dream. At that moment, an arrow landed at his feet and Cor looked up. Spying several more warriors racing toward him in the distance as another arrow barely missed him, Cor knew he only had one chance to save his companion’s life. He had no doubt about the outcome if he had to fight these newcomers in his condition. He knew that he had been incredibly lucky to have survived this long, and was even more fortunate that the path to the hold was unblocked.


Heaving the unconscious man over his shoulder yet again, Cor staggered to a sprint as best he could. Surrounded by darkness, Cor entered the hold gasping for breath with a searing pain in his side. Dazed and exhausted, Cor didn’t notice the lack of greetings nor the lack of alarm at his condition. Stumbling to the Stone Dogs’ roof, he managed to ease his passenger to the ground before falling to his knees himself.


He tried to speak to the sentry, but his throat was painfully dry, and furthermore he was stunned speechless as the man he had carried all day rose to his feet. Looking around, Cor thought he had lost his mind, as nearly the whole society was standing around him silently watching.

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Belran had taken up the sentry duty as was customary for the Society Second while they awaited the return of their potential brother. He returned from the desert tired and worse for the wear but carrying the burden that had been set before him. The other warriors he had faced returned before him and had already been seen to by a wise one; some bearing more scars than they left with; it was almost enough to bring a smile to his face. Those men had been careless to let the young ones spear find them; he should have been no problem for them and they had grown cocky and learned a lesson in the progress. It was now time for the less than pleasant aspect of their initiation, Belran only hoped that it wouldn’t send the young man into shock. The stone and the fire pit were brought forth, Belran picked up the blazing stone with a pair of blacksmith tongs and approached the man, two Stone Dogs removed the top half of his Cadin Sor and Belran placed the blazing stone on the right side of the mans chest. The boy did well accepting his pain and poring it forth in a guttural scream and the smell of searing flesh filled the air.


He was tired and warn out and his trails had only begun. Xin stepped out from the doorway the blazing sun now fully set he moved with as one with the darkness, staying in the shadows watching the boys eyes follow his slow progress towards him. The two men who had held Cor while he was branded began stripping him of his clothes and taking his weapons from him. He tried to struggle at first until he realized that this was part of the initiation. Xin now stepped into the ring that had formed around the initiate and slowly drew his sais. He had carried them with him since he was first initiated in Shae’en M’Taal; past the time that was customary and was supposed to be returned to the armory. Cor now stood naked in the middle of the ring, he had managed to find his feet and had taken up a fighting stance waiting for Xin to make the first move. “You have come far since you first approached our roof, will you now show me your skill?â€


OOC: Ok time to fight Xin, remember he’s the SL for a reason you won’t be able to make a mark on him but you will be able to relieve him of his sais….eventually. SO have fun with the fight you’re almost done; just be realistic.

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Looking up at the crowded area in front of the Shae’en M’Taal roof, Cor knew that his trials and over exposure had finally gotten the best of him. His mind was surely playing tricks on him in the fading light of dusk. He would have sworn that several of the Stone Dogs looking down at him were the very same warriors he had fought earlier that day. He had little time to focus his wandering thoughts, however, because two of the warriors approached him and helped him remove his shirt.


Behind the gathered members outside the roof, Cor noticed the evening’s sentry using a set of tongs to retrieve a red hot stone from a brazier that had been brought forth from inside. Calmly approaching, the sentry placed the blazing stone onto Cor’s chest. Embracing the pain, the young warrior pored it out in a guttural scream. Close to utter exhaustion, Cor simply knelt there after the stone was removed, leaving the smell of seared flesh and a livid scar as the only result of the branding.


Suspecting he still had more trials ahead of him, Cor searched inside himself to find strength as he eyed another Stone Dog who had just exited the roof, this one moving in the shadows until he joined the gathering in the darkness.


At that moment the two men who had already removed his shirt, forgotten for a moment, regained his attention by beginning to remove the rest of his cadin’sor. Cor struggled to resist until he realized that this was part of the ceremony, and silently endured the process, struggling to his feet as the last of his garments were removed.


“You have come far since you first approached our roof, will you now show me your skill?†asked the shadow-cloaked warrior as he stepped out toward Cor, drawing a pair of sai. Quickly scanning the silent circle that had formed around them, Cor snapped into a fighting stance and patiently waited to see what would happen.


The warrior approached him with lightning speed, his sai flashing like quicksilver. Slowed already, Cor barely managed to avoid the initial strikes with nothing more than a couple of minor scratches. Circling in an attempt to keep the armed Stone Dog off balance, Cor tried to formulate a strategy. But before he could focus his tired and muddled mind, he was forced again to desperately stave off a furious series of attacks. Fighting with all the skill and speed he could muster, Cor finally broke away from the assault as the new owner of numerous other gashes, bleeding like a Maiden who had run through a briar patch. He had managed to block the brunt of his adversary’s attacks, but had not landed a single respectable strike of his own. He had lost track of the number of cuts on his body; his blood watered the sand.


His opponent moved like a desert adder, striking with blinding speed, but Cor had finally realized that he was being toyed with. The attacks, as swift as they were, were meant to merely test and prod him like a cat with a mouse, confident of the kill. At the realization, Cor’s anger grew and he knew what he must do. If the fight continued, he would tire too much to even offer meager resistance (he realized he was rapidly approaching that point), and his foe would dispatch of him like the cat. “Blood and ashes, I’m no mouse!†he growled.


He stopped circling and charged. Almost before his adversary could react, Cor was upon him, a deep gash on his ribs the only cost. Tackling the older warrior with a strength born of desperation, Cor landed on his adversary with the force of an avalanche, the sai clattering to the ground.

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Xin had always been small amoungst the Aiel; but it had taught him to rely on speed and lightning quick attacks to throw his opponents off guard. It was exactly the tactic that he was using with Cor; testing and prodding to see how much strength remained in the man. He had cut the initiate several times through the fight and was surprised he was still standing. He knew the young couldn’t last much longer with the cuts that had been inflicted from his previous beating as well as the fight that he was now in, and expected something to come but was surprised with the strength that he had mustered. The ground met his back with racing force and knocked the sais from his hands. The members of Shae’en M’Taal roared a cheer for the young man as Xin rose from the ground. Many of the members present had had to fight Xin to join entry to the society, and all secrectly enjoyed seeing the man bested in single combat. Once back on his feet Xin collected his sais silently turning to the boy who barely stood watching him warily.


Belran moved forward holding the branding stone out to Xin who took it and moved towards Cor. Two members once again braced Cor to keep him standing, and Xin placed the Stone on the left side of Cor’s chest. “You have shown your dedication, your skill, your strength, and your willingness to protect at the risk of your own life.†Having said what needed to be said Xin turned leading Cor into the hold with the rest of the society. They made their way into the back of the roof and into the armory; he was always proud of their armory it was the largest in the hold and boasted of their ability it battle. “Now my friend you shall pick one weapons from this armory, you will carry it with you for a year and a day to show you are new and learning our ways, customs, and rights.†Xin waited until Cor had finally selected a weapon and was tottering on his feet. Xin smilied looking forward to the next part of the initiation, “You still have one more test you must pass before being allowed full entry into our society.†Xin grinned as a large Aiel stepped forward holding a bag of Osaqui and dowing half of it in a single swallow, “You must face our friend here in a drinking match and enjoy the night and remember it as your first night as a member of Shae’en M’Taal.â€


OOC: React tell us what weapon you picked etc…etc…then you’re a full stone dog and we’ll continue with your training and advancement to Soceity Second

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Cor stood silently, vaguely aware of cheering from the gathered Stone Dogs. Guessing that the initiation was coming to a close, Cor calmly eyed the warrior with the brand approach and stoically allowed two more warriors to hold him. As exhausted as he was, Cor barely winced as the searing brand marked his flesh. It was just one of many hurts that his weary body had endured in the past two days, like a grain of sand on a mountain.


After completing the branding in silence, the warrior Cor had just faced spoke, “You have shown your dedication, your skill, your strength, and your willingness to protect at the risk of your own life.†Motioning for Cor to follow, the leader as Cor now thought of him, made his way into the depths of the roof along with the rest of the society.


Coming at last to the armory, the leader looked at Cor and fondly stated, “Now my friend you shall pick one weapon from this armory,†gesturing at the vast weapon room. “You will carry it with you for a year and a day to show you are new and learning our ways, customs, and rights.â€


Cor carefully surveyed the arrayed weapons, twice circling the room before choosing an incredibly well made, long-bladed knife with intricate carvings. Thinking to himself, “The Stone Dogs are the last line of defense for the clan, and this will be my last line of defense. So the circle is complete.â€


Raising the knife high so everyone could see, Cor stumbled back toward the leader.


Smiling, the leader said, “You still have one more test you must pass before being allowed full entry into our society.†Stepping forward, a large Stone Dog held forth a skin of oos’quai and downed half of it in one gulp. Smiling again, the leader added, “You must face our friend here in a drinking match and enjoy the night and remember it as your first night as a member of Shae’en M’Taal.â€


Cor cracked a grin, thankful for the end to his rigorous testing, and reached toward the skin. With a shout, the gathered warriors acknowledged his acceptance and the party began.

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