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DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

SerenaMorrigan

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  1. Serena had arrived to the classroom early, and had chosen to sit behind the large mahogany desk with her feet up on a chair opposite her. She relaxed and waited for her students to arrive. Once again she had been incredibly pleased with the work Kathleen and Regalia had done. This class had been written specifically for Accepted and was NOT an easy one. Serena wasn't normally huge on homework, but this class was designed to help the girls think on their Ajah choices, whether they were to choose the Blue or not; although, it definately was directed towards..perhaps...molding them in the right direction. She smirked at her thought. All Aes Sedai did it, especially when they found innitiates that they thought had the drive that fit with their Ajah. As the young women walked into the classroom, Serena nodded to each one, and slowly removed her boots from the chair they'd been resting on. A mischievous thought cross her mind, and let her mouth quirk slightly in one corner. Her eyes sparkled as she stood and began to pace in front of her students. "Girls, for that is what you are," Her tone was sharp and almost condiscending. " I had thought that this class would have made you learn something, made you think, made you strive towards a final goal of becoming Aes Sedai." She removed her eyes from glaring straight forward, and turned to fix them on each Accepted. Pausing, she placed her hands on her hips and seemed to invoke anger from nowhere. "Clearly, you have much more to learn. If homework, field experience, and lecture are not enough, I do not know what is. In fact, there is so much more for you to learn that I have decided..." She clenched her teeth to show the ferocity behind her words, and her cheeks actually flushed as if her anger were rushing towards them in a blood pounding rage. And then....it stopped. "....Class is dismissed. You both did extraordinary work, and I am glad to have been the one to teach you in this lesson." She grinned. "As we spoke of earlier, we all know here, that once we have taken the Oaths that bind us, that we cannot lie; however, I did not lie when I spoke those words. There really is a lot more for you both to learn. Honestly, I am not done learning. One thing someone once said to me was, 'Remain teachable', and that is to help in keeping one humble. What I have done here, was using the art of deception." "Congratulations, Accepted." OOC: Class is done! I've already spoken with Lavinya and you guys have both far exceded the word count. Well done! ;D
  2. Serena was very proud of her students, both Katherine and Regalia were very promising Accepted, and the White Tower would be a better place with the two of them instilled as Servants of All. Gently, she pressed down the buttons of the front of her coat with the palm of her hand. Her eyes twinkling with the anticipation of what was in store for the young women, in their years to come. "Good afternoon ladies. Today we’ll be addressing the tools of the trade for the Blue Sister of the White Tower.” “As many of you are well aware, the Blue Ajah is often considered to be a group whose expertise coined the phrase, the truth you hear an Aes Sedai speak …” Serena smiled. “Blues have been accused of being ambulatory lexicons, women whose tongues are as golden as the rings we wear on our fingers. While the people of Cairhien are masters of the great game…we invented it.” “Truly the most powerful weapon any woman has is her good sharp wit but all the more so for a blue. The ability to convey messages unseen and unheard, despite scrutiny, is a fine art usable by even the lowliest of servant or novice of the Tower. Imagine being able to convey to a fellow Novice or Accepted about a secret rendezvous that would occur late that night or a prank, right in front of those you meant to avoid knowing! I will advise all of you to take the class, Basic Daes Daemar regardless of which Ajah seems attractive to you but ESPECIALLY if you are wanting to go with the Blue Ajah once raised. In fact, if you’re considering the Blue Ajah… consider taking all three Game of House courses offered here at the Tower.” “Again, the Blue Ajah is considered powerful because of our connection to the outside world… our ‘eyes and ears’ as it is sometimes referred to by the Sisters of the Tower. This connection is like the veins in a body… without them the body of our Ajah would not function, our purpose in the Tower… might as well be defunct. While other Ajahs have networks of eyes and ears, it is the blues who spend decades cultivating and nurturing their relationships with their fellow men and women of the world, to ensure a lasting connection. Sometimes families will work for lifetimes, far beyond anyone’s remembrance in the family, for the White Tower simply because a good relationship was established by the initial Aes Sedai and up kept by younger ones over the years.” “True enough this is a large portion of what young blues do, traveling the world keeping in touch with Eyes and Ears at the instruction of their sitters and ajah head. These young women represent the Tower, renew bonds with their contacts, and more importantly serve the practical purpose of being the first on scene for problems. This, as you might have guess, often puts them in the position to make or break the image of the White Tower and it is a trial by fire to be certain.” “What sometimes starts out as a simple trip through the borderlands to make contact with eyes and ears often turns into some of the grandest adventures of the gleeman’s tales.” For a moment Serena seemed excited, like she herself would rather be out right now chasing down adventures with her warder but then she suppressed the excitement and resumed Aes Sedai calm. “Sometimes, when out in the field a Sister finds herself caught between the most difficult choices… often for a Blue it is the conflict of duty to the Tower and duty to her cause. For some their Cause is the Tower or in a fashion an idea the Tower stands by… but even for those lucky Sisters, fate finds interesting ways to weave the pattern in such a way that we’re forced to make hard choices.” “It is in these tough decisions that the character of a Sister is tested truly. Sometimes, as you will discover in time, two things can be very right… and very wrong all at once. Deciding between the lesser of two evils or the better of two rights… is no easy task but the Blue is prepared for these things by her training and her ability to think outside the box.” “What I mean by this is non-conventional thinking. Coming up with original solutions to unusual problems. More than once a blue has disproven the old adage ‘ you can’t have your cake and eat it too.’ The trick is knowing what you want and what others want… and how to employ the help of those around you even if they don’t realize or want it.” Serena smiled mischievously. “Okay girls here is what I’d like you to do for homework tonight…” Serena began to hand out homework assignments. Ooc: No ic homework. Instead write up a paragraph or three about an rp you could do as a blue sister. With tweaking it could be usable after you’re raised (whether you go blue or not!) It doesn’t have to be a magnum opus but show us something that doesn’t deal with the main plotline (of the books) elements which could realistically occur in randland PRIOR to the timeline which Jordan deals with, as this will be the timeline you’re rp’ing in as new aes sedai. Consider things like politics, traveling to touch base with eyes and ears and what could happen along the way to see them, things eyes and ears might tell you are going on in their cities (think common problems from crime to sickness… drought to disputes between citizens) anything works, there is no wrong answer here. Try to employ at least one of the thoughts of the three elements which Blues use: Wits, Eyes and Ears, & the Great Game. Good luck!
  3. OOC: Sorry, guys, I had finals and papers due this week, so I got behind on my RPing. Won't happen again. IC: Lesson 3 Serena walked into the classroom and smiled at the students there. She’d greatly enjoyed watching them in the past lesson and reading their thoughts from their reports. Each of them showed a great deal of the beginnings of what it took to be a member of the Blue Ajah. Today however, she was going to break a little further into the depths of what it meant to be a Blue… the Cause. “Good afternoon, Students.” She chirped brightly as she came to stand before the large chalk board. Taking up her chalk she wrote on the board in big bold lettering: “What is a Cause?” Looking back at the students she waited to read their reactions. “A cause,” she began. “is anything which is worth fighting for, sacrificing for, or working at until its completion, even if that means working til your very death knowing that it may not be you who completes the task but another who will one day benefit from the study of your triumphs and failures.” “Causes come in all sizes. They are sometimes grand and legendary, so big that Ajahs have been formed around them, such as protecting the world from the threat of male channelers… the unending war against the Shadow and the eventual triumph of the Light’s forces at Tarmon Gaidon. But these are not the only causes to follow and a Blue Sister recognizes the idea that commiting the vast majority of your life to any one… while respectable… isn’t always realistic or fair to the many other causes which we as Aes Sedai could work with in a life span the likes of which an Aes Sedai has.” “Smaller Causes, by the mind set of the average man on the street, are taken up all the time by the Blue Ajah. Some of these causes are ones that are resolved and set right in a day or weeks time… but others are ongoing favorite projects of which the Sister toils at the whole of her life; doing what she can, where she can. I have several Causes, the main one being the Cause of the Light, which I will go into more detail letter on in the lesson." Serena's emerald eyes flicked towards Katherine, as she was aware of Serena's other Cause. "I chose this particular Cause, because of something that occured before I came to the White Tower. Granted, I could have chosen the Green Ajah, and fought Shadowspawn with steal and Saidar. However, my interests lay on the side of Justice and not steel” Serena would not reveal her other major Cause to students of the White Tower. Only a select few of her Sisters actually knew that Cleansing Saidin was a primary purpose of Serena's. “Blue Aspirants do not simply wake up one day and say to themselves, 'Self, I think I’ll spend my life working towards educating the poor.' And go out into the world and do it once raised. I believe that misconception is what keeps a lot of able bodied women from looking more closely at the Blue Ajah and I find that very funny as that is exactly what the aspirant of any other Ajah does. Wakes up one day, is tested and tried and commits herself to a single but important Cause under the banner of another Ajah for the whole of her life.” “Think about that for a moment… do you believe that even in the course of 20 years its fair to say you know what you’d want to do with perhaps the next 300 years of your life? Because that’s exactly how long you could live. Some Aes Sedai lived to legendary ages far exceeding that and there are two within our Tower right now whom I suspect are such… though it is rude to speak of such things so I shall say no more on that topic.” “The Blue Aspirant or newly raised Blue is often passionate about something and sees that as her cause but as she interacts with the world outside the Tower with the shawl on her shoulders… those ideals often change. Perhaps its happenstance or just the idea that after 20 years removed from society she finds the world different than she left it; but I like to think that it is a growth process. The difference between seeing the world with the eyes of a young idealistic woman who is new to power and the idea of what she might do with such a thing… and one who comes into her own and realizes even power can not solve all the wrongs of the world.” “In another writing about the Blue Ajah it is said that, ‘Blues sought to right wrongs, which was not always the same as seeking justice, like Greens and Grays.’ And this is so very true. As I said, loosely I term my own Cause as Justice but, in truth, I have fought even against the will of local governments which I thought unjust … something that a Gray working within the ranks of Justice of a city; just might not do. A Gray, such as my good friend and Sister Dawn, might work to change the government… while my good friend Eadon, a Green, might seek to right the immediate problem possibly with violence. I, on the other hand… might use more subtle methods which we will discuss further in the next lesson.” Serena smiled a mischievous grin. “Let’s take a look at some of the causes we’ve seen Sisters take up in the past. Justice, again not always the same from Sister to Sister and while this could have you working very closely to some Grays and Greens… that’s not always the case. Many a Blue Sister who worked for ‘justice’ was considered a bit of a maverick and very untraditional even for an Aes Sedai.” ”Freedom. This is one that is close to a lot of Sister’s hearts. Freedom means so very much and can have a Sister fighting all manner of things from the enslavement of men which has occurred in the past to the rights of women and men within given societies that they might be seen as equals.” ”Which brings us to …Equality. Whether among sexes, people of different countries, races… such as the Ogier, the Aiel, or those of us from the West Lands among the Aiel and Seafolk… and of course the ever popular Channelers in Amadicia and Tear… all of these are important.” ”Peace, again very open to interpretation. Peace could have you working as an advisor in Arad Doman trying to keep things quiet between them and Tarabon or maybe take you to the borderlands to fight beside the men of that area to protect the peace of the Southern Countries of our world.” “Which brings me to the Light, which is how I prefer to think about it rather than just limiting it to the war against the Shadow. Darkness, it is said by the Whites, lurks every where but no more strongly than in the hearts of men. Fighting for the Cause of the Light could take you to battle the Shadow’s big bad minions, dealing with small stuff like weeding out dark friends, but it also could have you working for understanding, kindness and other such noble ideas within towns all around the world. Every day is an adventure when your cause entitles so much… it’s a Cause you’ll work your whole life at and never see the end of… but I know that no Cause is so satisfying because everyday you personally can experience the joy which the Light brings.” Serena's eyes shone as she spoke of her own Cause ”The Children of the Light and trying to bridge the gap with them. Now I have known few Sisters who have gotten very far with this and I tell you from personal experience its not from lack of desire. However the force for good which the Children of the Light represent should NOT be underestimated and the Sister who bridges that gap and makes us allies will NEVER be forgotten. Truly it’s a sword we can ill afford to chase… but one which is as likely to strike us as it is to let us wield it.” ”Then there is, Education. Many a Blue and Brown have traveled the world together helping make sure everyone they come across has a chance to get a standard education if they desire it, trying to improve the standards of education in the world by starting schools and educating people to be teachers in their own communities and so on.” ”Ending Hunger and other large scale causes of death within our world has been the cause of a few Blues in history. Maybe you’re trying to find new and better ways to farm, or using Saidar to discover new ways to provide food like they did in the Age of Legends; but no matter how you do it one can not argue the worth of such a cause and purpose in life.” ”With that said there is also the Sisters who take up the cause of trying to restore the Age of Legends. Another noble ideal but one that is unlikely to be done by any one Sister alone. This cause is VERY broad and involves many I’ve already stated and includes others as well. Seeking out items of power, lost secrets, preservation of the Old Tongue, and finding remnants of cities lost to time and the breaking… they are all ways of trying to return the world to what it was long ago.” ”In the end, what makes a good cause is your passion to put behind it. There is no wrong cause… all things which you do for the world are good causes to have and your cause can change day to day with your experiences… a mistake many make about us Blues. Unlike the Sisters of the Ajahs, we prefer to remain true to the roots of the Aes Sedai and embrace the versatility and necessity of change from time to time. As the world and people change so too must we. Without that ability we would be lost to the world as surely as all unchanging things.” “Now, I want each of you to write a small paper tonight about a Cause you could take up realistically based on your life experiences right now… if you were to be an Aes Sedai out in the world. Assume you have all the Tower resources at your command and all the things which make an Aes Sedai an Aes Sedai… both weaknesses and strengths. Tell us about why you’d choose it… if you were a blue that is.” “Class Dismissed.” ooc Homework: You are to come up with a cause (that doesn’t involve the dragon reborn, ashaman, seanchan, etc as they wouldn’t be around in the time their characters would have been raised in the Tower) and tell us a bit about why your character might choose it… if you were to go blue. Try to think outside the box a little and realize that originality in rp is the spice of life! While its easy to take up Moraine’s cause from the books or even simply state “justice” as a cause; know that there is a lot more to any thing you pick. I could find three sisters who choose “justice" and each could easily have different views of what they are fighting for so help me to understand what it is you’re really wanting to do. Have fun with this. If you’re finding you’re stuck and you’re thinking “I HATE this, I don’t want to pick any one thing…” write about that. It’s a legitimate answser but tell me why. Tell me about what many things you’re thinking of and torn between. Ideally your brain storming here could help you stumble upon something you haven’t thought of yet. Write without thinking… just jot notes down on paper about what your character is interested in… eg: Keeping novices from being picked on without reason … and expand from there. That, for example could easily develop into “Well, I don’t like to see people oppressed by those who are stronger than them or in positions of power.” And that easily becomes the cause, “Stopping oppression” or “Building better leadership in the world governments – both large and small.”
  4. "Wonderful questions, indeed." Serena pursed her lips and pressed her fingertips together in her lap, so that they formed an arch. The girl had obviously thought a lot about the subject, much as Serena had from the time she was an Accepted. Granted, she could not tell Kathleen all that she knew, and some of it, she did not even know herself. "At times, I wonder if I would have been better suited as a Yellow, because I have wondered the very same thing about Healing the madness." She smirked at the thought. Her, spending all of that time Healing? No, that was not where her interests lay completely. "Personally, I am not sure how long it takes for it to begin, but I would bet my life on the fact that the more one would use Saidin, the more it would lace itself into their very being. Much like drinking poison. The more you drink of it, the closer you become to death." Raising her arched fingers to her mouth, she propped her elbows up onto the arm rests of the chair, and pressed her fingers to her lips. "Which makes me wonder if a man could survive if he simply did not touch the True Source. However, personally, it would be incredibly difficult for me not to embrace Saidar once I'd had my first taste of it." Her insides tightened so she would not shudder at the thought. "I mean, could you imagine it? Not reaching out and grasping at the sweetest and most powerful thing you've ever felt?" She let her eyes be affected by her smile, when she thought of one of the questions Kathleen had, and she let out a light laugh. "As far as I know, since the Dark One's touch had lashed out on the male half of the True Source, that would mean that all men would be affected by it. In history, all of the channeling men that had been caught, caused serious harm to the people about them, and parts of the world as a whole." The Blue nodded her head towards the window, rain still pelted at the glass, and every once in awhile a flash of lightning would silhouette Dragonmount. "We do have proof of that, right outside of our walls. Although," and this where she found it funny. "some of us take it too far at times, I think. There are those in the Tower that might be more than happy to just do away with men altogether. Channeler, or not." She restrained from winking, but her eyes reflected what she was thinking, and hopefully Kathleen would understand which Ajah she was talking about. "I am sure that the Taint could have been lashed out at Saidar, if things had gone a little differently. Unfortunately, none of us has learned to time travel, so going back is out of the question. Men going mad, is just something that 'is', although that does not mean that we can't wish that it never happenned, or wonder if it could be fixed. Some Aes Sedai would argue that I waste my time pondering such things, and should leave that up to those who are more suited for it: No one, or the Brown Ajah." "As to your questions about the Dark One," Serena sat up and leaned forward, her face darkened as she spoke. "I study the Shadow and how it works in our people and the world; however, one can only get so close. From my own experience, we know there is an heirarchy, one with Dreadlords somewhere near the top. Of course, the Forsaken would be at the top of that food chain." Emerald eyes darted towards Kathleen, and she wondered if she had spoken of the Forsaken with too much nonchalance. It wasn't that she was not afraid of them, but showing fear and acting out of it would only cause her to be weak. "Dreadlords are the men that abide by the Dark One's hand, and can channel." Her skin crawled as she thought of her brush with one in Aridhol. Yes, he saved my life, but why? "Anyways, I would assume that the Dark One gives orders to his subjects, and they carry them out. I also believe that there is reason and rhyme for the places that his hand touches. Perhaps, some of it is like waves rippling outwards from the intended target, but for the most part I am sure that the destinations are pre-meditated. Now, just because Darkfriends don't channel, doesn't mean they are any less dangerous. Yes, we can Shield them and hold them with bonds of Air, but it is behind the scenes that they often work. Squirming their way into High Courts, for whatever reason that promises them power." Serena's face grew even cooler, and her eyes took on a very serious look. She leaned forward and held the Accepted with her gaze. "Kathleen, you spoke of letting your guard down earlier; don't ever fully let your guard down." A draft of cool air swept through the cracks in the walls, making the flame on the candle waver and almost snuff out. As if she had not assumed such an ominous postion and tone, Serena leaned back against the chair again with ease. The iciness of her face smoothed out, and appeared warmer. "Did I help you with any of your questions? Really, it's almost all speculation and theory, so I probably didn't help you at all; however, I am glad to have someone to throw theories around with." Serena Morrigan
  5. 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
  6. Preparing for her lesson that day, Serena reflected over the previous lesson. She had really enjoyed two of her students. Kathleen, she knew from their quiet talks in the library, and the girls curiosity of many of the subjects that Serena, herself, was interested in. It was a pleasure teaching the young woman. Another student had suprised Serena, and she berated herself for not having met with the girl sooner. Regalia was an Aspirant to the Blue Ajah and the Ajah Head herself had not met with the girl personally. Granted, Regalia would not know who Serena was until she was welcomed into the Ajah; but Serena should have extended herself to the Accepted much longer before that. Lesson 2 ~~~~~~~~~~ Serena entered the class, purposefully late and dressed for travel; blue socks and all, accompanied by three tower guards and her Gaidin Thera Trakelyn dressed in her Fancloak. She waited to see which students would notice her socks and how they would respond. “Ladies, its time to go for a ride into the countryside. Follow me.” Without waiting too long for the girls shock to melt away she turned and expected the group to follow. The ladies were lead out to the stables, each given a horse and instructed that they’d be taking a day trip to a small village just north of Tar Valon where they could do some ‘hands on’ learning about the Blue Ajah. Each girl was given a pack which included a lunch and various supplies. As they began riding Serena began her instruction. “What being a blue is all about…” Serena said as she motioned a hand outwards towards the milling people all around her, the life and heartbeat of Tar Valon… the merchants, the beggars, the thieves, and the many transients who had come from countries far and wide to call upon the White Tower. “People. At the heart of it, all our work and deeds must be the people. Some will tell you Justice is our truest purpose and reason for being… but without the concerns of the people near our hearts Justice is an empty thing. What good is law if it does not serve? What good is rule without the people it protects? All people… not just some, from these merchants to those homeless children in rags over there.” “Now you might argue that these are the concerns of all humanity, of all Aes Sedai, and you would be right but no Ajah more so than the Blues are connected to the heart of these people. They share in one thing that the Sisters of other Ajahs do not and at this end of this lesson, I hope I’ve made that clear to all of you.” The city streamed passed the small entourage, some people smiling and greeting them as they passed… others staring on in awe at even the girls in White. “May the Light bless and keep you, Aes Sedai!” A woman called from across the way and her children waved happily and shouted with joy at Serena and the students as they passed by. In fact, one little girl even pointed at one of the students and called out, “Momma I want to be like her someday and become Aes Sedai too!” Serena couldn’t help but smile at it all. Truly with the sun shinning down on Tar Valon it was a lovely day for a ride in the country! “The Blue Ajah believes that each person has a mind and a voice of their own, and each as deserving of basic human rights; rights that cannot be taken away by any man, woman, or King. This is not always a popular opinion in a world where men and women are meant to bow to Kings and Queens and serve as they are told. It is for this reason that Novices and Accepted must learn to live as they do at the White Tower. To be a true servant of all who live in our world a girl must first learn what it is to be like even the most lowly of people in the world. Imagine if when you had come to the Tower we had treated you as Aes Sedai right away. Now perhaps you would have kept your perspective, and more the better for you if you would have, but not all girls would. Most would lose themselves in a lifestyle so vastly different than the ones they came from. Many girls who come from money would never learn what it means to go without and to live as a servant and so… if they had ever met one on the street, what do you suppose such a girl would do? Would she stop and help such a person? Would she ever understand what it means to be her? No. She wouldn’t. But now you will always remember, or so we hope.” “For a blue, who often lives out of her saddle bag and surrounds herself with the common people of our world… it’s not so hard to remember. There have been many times in which I have found myself sleeping in a cold hard bed, or on the dirty earth… times I’ve gone without meals, let alone sweets… and chores pale beside some of the hard work I’ve done with my bare hands in places where the One Power was dangerous to use or not a viable option. It is for these things we prepare you, to make you strong and able… to know your fellow man and to better know yourself and your own heart.” “Usually Blues have known exactly what they want to do for their whole lives in one fashion or another. We’re willful women by design and we have a strong sense of self that sometimes develops and grows under the pressures of Novice and Accepted life. We can be opinionated to the point of being bullheaded and perhaps that is one of our greater short comings if we have many at all. But considering the Causes which we become bullheaded about, its hard to say being stubborn is bad.” “Blue's are worldlier, or if you will… street-smart, because unlike the other Ajahs each blue has her own agenda which she’s working towards as well as the Ajah’s goals. And while those two things might sometimes be the same thing as what other Aes Sedai are doing, they don’t necessarily have to be and usually aren’t. For that reason alone, younger blues rarely stay in the White Tower long and instead prefer stretching their legs and their newfound resources to go back to the world they came from and make a real difference.” “Other Sisters see the Blue Ajah as so ready to save the world that they lose themselves. I don’t know that this is a fair assessment but I can see why they believe it. Our passions run high about the things which we care for and I can’t blame anyone for saying such a thing about us. According to some Greens a Blue Ajah sister likes men as long as they share her causes and do not get in her way. Perhaps that’s why we chose Gaidin who share a passion for our Causes. That Justice and Mercy must be a balanced working team and our beliefs have lead us to many interesting places together and helped a great deal of people.” Serena smiled briefly at Thera before turning back to her students. “A Blue can appear to be like a Brown when it comes to researching a subject that has to do with a cause of theirs so do not believe that because a Blue might like to travel that she does not have a love for learning. I’ve spent many an hour preparing for journeys and missions with my nose placed firmly in a book. In fact, there are several blues who have championed the cause of furthering education in the world and more than once there has been talk of the Browns working with us to establish places of learning across the width and breadth of Andor and the Borderlands.” “For every purpose of every ajah the Blues have at least one Sister who has, in the past, shared their cause. If you’re considering another Ajah think of this first… what prevents a Blue from healing like a yellow and making her cause better health care for all the people of the world? What prevents a Blue from mediating despites and arbitrating laws of countries between kings and queens as advisors, making her cause peace like any Gray? What prevents a Blue from taking up a sword and joining the warriors along the blight border and keeping the Shadowspawn out of the southernlands, and sharing the cause of preparation for Tarmon Gaidon like any Green? What prevents a Blue from researching the degeneration of male channelers, the arts of shielding and detection of the male channeler, thusly taking on the cause of preventing another breaking like any Red? What prevents a Blue from studying philosophies of the past and the theories of the world and its origins and thusly making learning and discovery her cause like any White? What prevents a Blue from opening schools and teaching poor children to read and write, making knowledge and its preservation her cause like any Brown?” “You see, the purpose for every ajah is simply a specified cause. It is the Blue Ajah alone which leaves it to the individual Sister to find her purpose and follow it and change that purpose when it is no longer necessary or something else comes along. Like our Sisters and Brothers in the Age of Legends the Blue Ajah is versatile doing what is needed today, tomorrow, and in the future.” As they rode and continued speaking a village came up on the horizon and soon they were entering its tiny dirt packed streets. Dismounting and tying her horse to a tree she turned to the girls and opened a small book from her pocket. “In the words of a blue sister two generations ago; ‘The Blue Ajah is comprised of women who have a strong sense of justice. Many pursue causes of their own or bend their energies to causes such as seeking out girls who can channel, searching for the Dragon Reborn, bettering the living conditions of villages, involving themselves in trade between Tar Valon and foreign countries and a host of other things. Its primary focus is to champion worthy causes by Aes Sedai standards and to promote justice for all men and women in all areas of the world. They are skilled at political maneuvering and able administrators. In Tower history, and since Artur Hawkwing’s time, it has been found that Blues are better suited as Amyrlins because of this openness and ability to adapt and lead those around them in what they believe in. Thusly the Blue Ajah has produced many most of which have come from very humble beginnings, returning to them for years before coming home to the Tower and working their way to the positions of respect that got them into the lauded position of Amyrlin Seat.’” Closing the book she looked at the girls, each in turn. “This village is like many others which great women have come from, some have become Queens… some great wisdoms and sages, and even some have gone on to become Amyrlin Seat. But all of them have one thing in common,” Serena paused looking into the eyes of the girls before her. “They all had a moment in which someone helped them and changed the course of their lives. Perhaps that help came in the form of someone assisting them in learning something new, maybe through inspiration, or perhaps just the simple act of being an open ear. Sometimes people don’t know what they most need until they are given it… or worst of all, until they lose it.” “Here in this village, today, you will take the objects in your packs and go out to do what a Blue does every day of her life… today, you will take what you have been given: knowledge, caring, and objects of physical being… and strive to find some cause worth spending your time upon. You will labor at that task, no matter what it is… fishing… gathering food with a local towns person, perhaps helping a child to read… maybe cooking for an elderly person… or even comforting someone ill. There is no wrong cause and there is no small cause… only small people who can not realize that the most important things in the world to us are sometimes the smallest things.” “When the sun sets you will meet me back here at this tree, I’ll be obseriving you from afar and I will not assist you today. If I must step in, it had better be for a very good reason or I will not be pleased. I want to see what you can do on your own. Mischief will be harshly punished today ladies, so I advise you to behave as the representatives of the White Tower that you are. To these people you might as well be wearing shawls… please, behave as such.” “When the sun has set and you report back, we’ll return home and your homework will be to write a paper telling me why or why not you think the Blue Ajah is something you could consider. Include some of what you’ve learned today, and even a bit about your experience here in this town and how it helped … or didn’t help you to see the point I was trying to make.” “Oh… yes, and while you’re out and about looking at these people and how they live… compare it in your minds to how the Aes Sedai of the Tower live. I know most of you have seen our rooms and how we are treated in the walls and then ask yourself this; ‘If I were to spend a lifetime in the White Tower and almost never came out to see that the rest of the world lived like they do in this town, and in some places worse, how then could I ever really believe I know the people I claim to serve?’ Regardless of which Ajah you choose in the future ladies… I pray to the Light that the lesson you learn here about that one thing, remains with you always.” “Now… go forth with your escorts,” she motioned a Tower Guard to follow each girl as a guardian. “… and begin serving all ladies. I’ll see you in a few hours.” Ooc: Sorry this got longer than I meant it too! LOL You have two options for your homework. #1 Write a small essay telling us how your character currently does or does not fit in with what is good and bad about the Blue Ajah and how she does or does not fit in with what the Blues would be looking for in an aspie. This shouldn’t involve your personal choice yet; however show us based on your rp thus far how they would or wouldn’t both; match with the good and bad of the ajah AND how they do or don’t match with what the blues are looking for in potential future sisters. Ideally this should help the player actually think through the process of “Does my character have more in common with Blues than I thought? Or have I been liking the Blues only because the characters in the book were cool?” AND… “No matter what my character wants, will the Blues realistically try to recruit her?” #2 Write up a scene in which your character is spending the day in the Town and what she does that day as her “cause” or multitude of “causes.” Let me see her getting her hands dirty with whatever cause she feels is fitting to spend her day on. If you’re a blue aspie this might be a good time to toy with some ideas for a cuase. If you’re not, have some fun with this and consider perhaps this is also a good time to explore the reasons you might aspire to your future ajah. A yellow aspie might find someone sick to help, a brown aspie might help a child with reading, a gray aspie might settle a dispute over a piece of property or animal based on laws of the city, a red aspie might meet someone who had once lost someone to a male channeler or who cared for a now dead male channeler thusly getting some insight into that. A white aspie might spend the day discussing philosophy with an older person in the village and maybe playing stones. A green aspie might meet a traveling borderlander and his family and spend some time talking about the lifestyle of those who always fight the shadow. Be creative and have fun!
  7. Down the long quiet corridors to the Tower which contained the classrooms, came a small curvy form. Pixie like raven hair framed her crème colored skin and tilted emerald eyes; giving her a soft motherly quality… all save her shapely lips which seemed to always hold something of a mischievous smile upon them. Dressed in a simple blue dress, Serena Morrigan had forgone her favored breeches and jacket for today’s attire; for today it was most important she make a good impression. Today she would teach the class the Blue Ajah had asked Espara A'Dautry to write about the Blue Ajah. Today she might cause a young Accepted to consider the very Ajah she’d come to call home, and that made her very glad. Entering the room she smiled at the students present. “Good afternoon Accepted of the White Tower.” She waited for a response from the young girls as she laid out her notes and book on the desk at the front of the large lecture hall. It had seemed like an odd choice of rooms to pick, being that her class would likely be small, but Serena had always liked to imagine what it might have been like long ago when such a room had been necessary; when great minds had come to the Tower to share their vast knowledge with the future Servants of All. “This is ‘The Ajahs 101: The Blue Ajah’ and I’ll be your instructor for the duration, Serena Morrigan.” Laying her blue fringed shawl on the table she scanned the room once and then once again to take note of the faces present. “To understand the past is to understand ourselves. Can anyone tell me who said that?” She walked around her desk and sat on the front edge of it, crossing her ankles and resting her weight on her arms behind her. When she realized the girls were taking notes already and not able to answer, she continued. “I did. Today… here and now.” She waited for the girls to let out their laughter and then continued. “But many have said things just the similar and it is no less true then than it is now. We are the sum total of our experiences and the things we have learned in the course of our lives. So, today we’re going to focus a bit on history and how it applies to what is around us all today.” Serena walked around her desk to the large slate board on the wall behind the desk. Taking a piece of chalk she began to write, ‘Aes Sedai.’ Turning back to the students she began to pace calmly as she lectured. “By now most of you know that Aes Sedai, in the Old Tongue, means Servant of All. And, in theory, you likely understand what that means by today’s standards as you’ve all made it through your first trial on your way to earning that title. However, in the Age of Legends, a Servant of All was a woman or man who spent their whole life doing just what the words say… serving all. Based on what we know of that time, we have ascertained that Aes Sedai worked in all manner of fields from Health to Diplomacy, much as they do today… however, it was not unknown for an Aes Sedai to dabble in many things and change from one line of ‘work’ to the next depending upon what was necessary in the course of her journeys.” “The word ‘ajah’ from the Old Tongue translated means “Sisterhood of Aes Sedai” and defined means; an informal or temporary group of people gathered together for a common purpose or goal, or by a common set of beliefs.” Serena stopped to write the word and definition upon the slate board. “Please note the word ‘temporary’ in this definition. Ajahs, did in fact exist in the Age of Legends. However, they did not exist as we know them now. These groups formed as necessary to serve specific causes and when they were no longer necessary they simply disappeared.” “When the breaking occurred Aes Sedai were scattered to the four winds trying to survive and to help the world where they could. It was rare that more than two or three Sisters really ever gathered anywhere for more than a short time and so Ajahs faded into nothing more than memories.” “Of course, individual Sister did design ways of making note of each other and in particular an ajah who had been working together in the latest hours of the Age of Legends, devised a series of connections with the people of the world which would soon grow to be the largest Eyes and Ears network known to the White Tower. Can anyone guess who might head that network today?” Serena called on a student. “The Blue Ajah, Serena Sedai.” “Correct. Being that the world was in such chaos as it was at the time, items had to be used to identify women. Now, since this was a time before shawls and rings let me show you what they used.” Reaching under her desk where she’s earlier placed the item she pulled up a large quarter staff. It was made from a strong wood of some sort and the direction of the wood grain could barely be seen, that was how old it was. The staff had carvings of various saying in the old tongue as well as a symbol from long ago that had meant justice. From the top of the staff, which stood some distance above Serena's head, there hung a feather about 3 inches long of a pure blue color that looked almost unreal from some bird of an age long gone the only thing keeping it from fading or falling apart was the keeping weave which hung still upon it. “Staffs, such as this one, were carried by Aes Sedai to identify them to contacts and friends who would help them, giving them food, shelter, and aid from a myriad of foes that spanned the world hunting Aes Sedai. Not the least of which was their Brother Aes Sedai who had gone mad.” Serena handed her staff out to the students and let them pass it around the room to look at. “This staff has passed Sister to Sister since the age of legends. The bird feather on its top is not identifiable to us and we believe it died out in the breaking. Each sister, during the course of her life, adds something special and uniquely herself to the staff and once she has returned to the Creator, that staff is given to another so that through our Sisters our causes and the things we believed in live on.” She watched the amazement of the young Accepted as they admired her staff and she smiled. It was good to see so many impressed by this wonderful piece of history. “Of course the Tower was built and established and in time Amyrlins were raised. To this date more Amyrlin Seats have risen from the ranks of Blue Ajah than any other. Part of the reason for this is quite possibly our connections to the outside world, or perhaps that many of our Sisters come from well versed families in the arts of Daes Dae’mar… or the Great Game of Houses.” “But in truth when it comes to raising an Amyrlin Seat, you’re only as good as the Sisters who will support you and this is where the Blue Ajah has been truly blessed. Now, while the White Tower is a working unit and is certainly not at odds with itself; it’s pompous to assume that a centuries old institution with so many women running it, might not have groups and even factions within itself working for a vast group of goals and ideals. And, one can’t expect that everyone will always agree on just how to accomplish those goals. Now the Blues, while it is known we’ve often been at odds with the Red Ajah for our choice of methodology, have close ties and connections to nearly every other Ajah in the Tower. Practical reasons are the primary reason for this, again our connections with the outside world, but many other ties are forged from experiences that Sisters share in their time in the Tower.” “Since this is a bit of a hot topic among Novices & Accepted, I’ll take a brief moment to focus upon the Red and Blue Ajah relationship. Often it's said that the Blues hate Red Sisters and vice versa. This is a blanket statement and I assure you that not all Blues hate all Reds or vice versa. You might site the fact that no blue sister wears red or that no red wears blue… well, I can not speak for the Red Ajah in this matter but I can tell you some of the reasons for this tradition on the Blue Ajah side of things.” “The tradition of not wearing red came from, yes, old feuds. But it has continued as a matter of principal… a sort of silent statement of objection to, as I said before, methodology. The Red Ajah works on a very strict “prevention” sort of policy. Take for example the cause they are most well known for: protecting the world from insane male channelers. In this they are dedicated and well respected, my own mentor was a Red and I can say without doubt I have mountains of respect for this woman. However, she and I don’t agree on how all male channelers should be dealt with. It was not so long ago this topic came up in the Hall of the Tower.” “Should the Tower study male channelers under shieldings in an effort to try to cleanse the taint of Saidin? A bitter topic let me tell you what! But it brought out the passion that both the Red and Blue Ajah hold in their hearts. Both Ajahs concentrate on their goals with a fire in their souls and the problem is, when it comes time to lay plans in how to deal with the issues before them… they almost never agree. The red wishes to simply end what she fears may be a problem in the future… and the blue sees that the hope of a better future is worth risk, pain, and effort even if its done so in vain for many years. Eventually…” Serena holds up her staff taking it from the last student. “… some sister will be successful. I’m sure that whoever held this during the worst times of the breaking feared the world would never see an organized Aes Sedai government again… and now look.” She smiled brightly. “I’ll be happy to talk further on that subject with any of you outside of class, feel free to find me in the Blue Ajah Quarters but, I’d like to take some time to go back and focus a bit more on the Blue Ajah traditions and what they’re purposes are.” Taking up her shawl she passed it out to the class. “Take a look at this shawl and ask yourself, why is it that any random woman couldn’t simply make a shawl like this and play at being Aes Sedai? After all… once the pattern is learned it must be a simple task, if you don’t fear Tower Law catching you.” “This shawl you’re holding, however, wasn’t made by some seamstress with a pattern. Each Blue Sister’s first shawl is handmade by her fellow Sisters. Each Sister in the Tower before a raising takes time to put a few bits of the stitching into it and when the Blue is raised the youngest Sister in the Tower gives the new Blue her first shawl. This is part of welcoming the new Blue into her family. To show that each of us is part of a greater whole and that with this symbol we are now a part of that unity which is even more tight knit than the Great White Tower itself.” “Once a Blue is raised a most interesting thing is done which some of you have seen already, no doubt, she is asked if she would like to go light clad save for her shawl through the Tower for all within to greet her. Why, you might wonder, would a Sister do such a thing? Well, some of this has to do with the fact that it is a matter of pride and a tradition which the Tower has nearly forgotten the origins of. The other is to show to all the world that the new Sister, still clad in her wounds and weariness from the final testing, needs only the Light and her shawl… a symbol of her new family… to protect her from anything the world has to offer.” “When a Sister of the Blue Ajah leaves the White Tower she always wears blue stockings. The reason for this is so that she will remember that no matter where here feet take her… they will always know where home is. In the times of the Breaking when the Aes Sedai had no home all they had was their Sisters. There is a story in a private library I’ve been privileged enough to use which details out a story of a group of Sisters who met in an Inn for a few days before traveling their separate ways in the chaotic world. Each had come weary and without good shoes or socks and so each made socks for the other all of the same look and all in the only color cloth available… blue. This was their way of telling each other that so long as one woman walked the world who was yet Aes Sedai, there was still a place they were at home… still hope… still family.” Serena let the idea of her story sink in a moment before continuing. “Lastly it is tradition that each Ajah keep certain weaves to themselves… now, I won’t be telling you too much about those today simply that they exist. Again this is to instill a sense of oneness and unity with the Sisterhood of the Ajah. Few things bind us tighter than the Tower but you’ll find that in an Ajah it is vital to the causes it pursues that each member feels they have some place, someone, with whom they can trust and rely on. The Blue Ajah, despite its many varied and differing causes among their sisters, believes that they create this environment for their members.” “Okay, now for your homework. Based only off what little you know of the Blue Ajah already, since this is your first class about the Blues I can only assume you know very little, and what you’ve heard today I’d like you to write a small essay. The Essay should be titled either: “The importance of the Blue Ajah” or “The false importance of the Blue Ajah.” Neither essay will be wrong based on topic … rather I’m looking to see what you know, what you think you know, and what you can find in the library in one week’s time. Next class we’ll focus on the life of a Blue Sister and what all that entails. Class dismissed.” --------------------- OOC Homework: Based on what the characters have heard in this thread and imagined research time, the characters are writing a paper on the importance (or lack of importance) of the Blue Ajah. No answer is right or wrong but the character is expected to support their argument either way. Simply saying “the blues are cool cause they had a lot of Amyrlin Seats and they do good stuff.” Just won’t cut it; nor would saying, “they are pointless and they suck.” Ideally this will give the player a chance to examine what they really feel about the history of the Blue Ajah and what their characters might think. This helps form a basis for if the character would or wouldn’t be drawn to the Ajah. I encourage you to check out Blue Ajah websites all over the web and even reference the WOT books. There are a lot of good sources for information or… just write from your character’s biases. Have fun with it! I know it's long, but the next ones wont be as long. I hope it doesn't bore you
  8. "I am finding being Accepted is a lot different for me than being a Novice was. Not for the role or the new dress, of course, I have just been changing in attitude it seems. When I first arrived I was timid and overwhelmed. I was awestruck by the Tower and all that came along with it, and I closed off to everyone. I didn't want to stand out, but in doing so I lost touch with who I was. Since I gained my ring I have realized how shut out I was making myself, and how much I've missed by over thinking. Now I am just starting to let down my guards, but it seems it is harder than I had thought it would be." Serena nodded, and folded her hands in her lap. Ah, the life of Acceptedhood. She smiled as Kathleen spoke of the trials and tribulations that Serena had practically forgotten. Light, that had been such a strange time in her life. During her novice-hood she had had to learn to read, and had to adapt to the structure of the White Tower. Most of the other novices had performed their tricks and pranks, but she didn't start getting into serious trouble until she donned the banded dress of the Accepted. The subject quickly changed to the books Serena had displayed before her. "I have taken many books to Brown Sisters, and a few to the Whites, but none have ever asked for any of these books, or similar. I didn't even know we had them. How long have you had an interest in this stuff? And what do you look to gain from these books? Are there others like them, or this all we have?" Arching a dark eyebrow, Serena responded. "Perhaps, Kathleen, they simply did not ask you to bring these specific books to them. Aes Sedai have been interested in these things for quite some time, and it is not always information that we wish our innitiates to be side-tracked with." Her hand grazed over the covers of the books as she spoke. "Although, I've been studying Aridhol since I was about your age." Serena fondly remembered her time in the library, where she sat across from Espara A'Dautry and Delana Sedai discussing Mashadar. "It was fascinating to me, how a whole nation could fall victim to such an awful Taint on what had been such a great city. A place, where not even Shadowspawn will tread." "I acquired these many years ago, from a Brown Sister that had taken me under her wing while I was still a novice." Memories of Arette Sedai trickled into her mind's eye, and she wondered whatever had happenned to the woman. Gone, without a trace. Lifting her eyes from the table, she tilted her head to the side and regarded the Accepted. "And you? Do you have an interest in these subjects?" Serena Morrigan Blue Ajah Head
  9. The girl arrived back at Serena’s table, and the Aes Sedai studied her. The steps she had taken back to the table had been almost “bouncy”, and as soon as the girl probably thought that Serena was watching her, she composed herself into a stiff manner as she approached. Her curtsy had been too deep again, and now she stood with the rigidity of a soldier. No doubt the poor child is running circles in her head about what is proper, and what is not. Oh, Daes Dae’mar had been so much fun to inflict upon the younger women of the White Tower, when Serena had first been raised to the shawl; however, it was not always needed, even if it came as second nature. Likely, the girl would jump if she said "toad". Where was the fun in that, when your subject was so willing. Arching a dark eyebrow, seemingly unimpressed. “Child, your formalities are impressive, and often needed, no doubt; but, please relax and sit yourself down.” She waved a hand towards a chair opposite from her. “My Sisters often put an incredible amount of effort into etiquette and formalities, and fail to include that the Creator gave Accepted brains to use. Besides, if you have come as far to obtain the ring, you should be able to begin to think for yourself.” Serena gestured at the tea pot. “You may have some, if you like.” The Blue Sister let the anger that had practically consumed her from earlier, trickle out of her mind. A smile approached her lips, and she shook her head. “Here I speak of formalities, and I hardly follow them myself. I am Serena Sedai of the Blue Ajah. I have been sitting here, studying, and I am growing increasingly restless with my subjects.” Her hands grazed over the books before her. The titles in plain view. Tilted emerald eyes watched the Accepted from her periphery. “Anyways, “ She leaned back against her chair, again, and propped one of her boots up on a chair across from her. Serena often feigned a relaxed state in heated moments, and times when her “opponent” would have expected her to be on her toes, or the edge of her seat; however, she was truly relaxed in this moment, and was having a little fun all the same. “Tell me about yourself, Accepted. Like, say, your name for starters, and maybe how you are taking to the life of Acceptedhood.” Flames from a nearby candle danced in her eyes. Serena Morrigan Blue Ajah Head
  10. Mashadar, the dark and mysterious power that seems to keep even the forces of the Dark One out of the city, is not unlike… Serena ran her finger along the lines of text, as if she had never read the sentence before. …the menacing and corroding darkness of Machin Shin, or the Black Wind, in The Ways. Some think… Serena had not noticed the moving tower of books that was headed straight for her table, and it was at that moment the tower collapsed right on top of her. Heavy volumes, fit for only a Brown, smashed on top of her hands and pushed her books down onto the floor. Pushing back in her chair, the legs screeched on the floor as she stood up. “What in the bloody..?” At the same time, she heard. "Blood and A--Aes Sedai!" And the girl dropped into a deep curtsy, fit for nobility, no doubt. Her face turned a lovely shade of crimson and she stammered apology after apology. "I am so sorry, Aes Sedai, I did not see you! I should have been looking...are you alright?" The Blue Sister watched the Accepted, and after being perturbed from being interrupted, she found the scene to be slightly amusing. Granted, her first reaction was anger, but after a few moments of watching the girl drop to the floor grasping at books as quickly as she could, Serena had decided that interaction with the younger initiates was exactly what she needed. “Really, child, it’s quite alright. No need to stammer and fuss over a few books, although we may have to enlist you in some lessons on etiquette. Keeping one foot in front of the other gracefully, will be quite useful.” Tilted emerald eyes twinkled, yet her other features remained cool. The young woman must not have heard her, and continued to scramble for the books. Her hand reached for Serena’s books, paused, then returned to the rest of her pile. Tilting her head to the side, the Aes Sedai watched in interest. Perhaps the Accepted was interested in those topics as well, it would not be brought up often in her studies. Serena, herself, had had to seek out help from Espara Sedai when she was an Accepted, to find out any information on Aridhol. In moments, the girl rose and headed towards the rows and rows of shelves. Shaking her head with a sly grin approaching her lips, Serena followed the Accepted. “Oh, Light, there’s no way you will be able to navigate your way around here with all of these and not cause another accident. You can hardly see around these. Which Brown sent you down here without a basket?” She reached up and grabbed the top half of the books. “I will help you put these away, and when we’re done, you will come and meet me back at my table.” Serena nodded matter-of-factly, despite the look on the young woman’s face, and spun around on her heel to find the shelves that she needed. Serena Morrigan Blue Ajah Head OOC: Hope that's alright. I promise I'll make the next one more exciting. ;D
  11. The loud clicking of heeled boots echoed in the cool, stone corridors of the White Tower. If emotions were capable of manipulating the One Power, Serena would have been encapsulated in a bubble of flames and dragging behind her a path of destruction. She was fuming on the inside, and every time she thought about it her feet picked up their pace, and her long blue coat flared out behind her. The blasted women treat me like a child just loosened from her mother’s apron strings! How dare they undermine me during an Ajah meeting! The diminutive Saldaean Blue had been meeting with the Ajah regarding an unusual occurrence where a set of Eyes and Ears had gone missing, some of the elder Aes Sedai did not agree with her and called her point of view “rash”. Bloody women! If Darkfriends are involved with our Eyes and Ears they will lead a trail right back to us, how could they not want to scout things out? So, Serena found herself removed from her quarters to take refuge in the most unlikely of places for her, the Library. There was a time when the fiery Blue wouldn’t have been caught dead in that part of the Tower; however, as her position in her Ajah had changed, she found herself more inclined to remain within it’s walls, than outside. She was not one to be confined or caged, but one to roam free and travel. It was not that being Ajah Head was a sentence for penance, meaning that she had to always remain within the Tower, but it had changed her lifestyle slightly. Pushing upon the large mahogany doors, Serena took in a deep breath and composed herself. Her features cool and composed, except for the spark behind her tilted emerald eyes. The clicking of her knee high black boots changed to an even pace, as she crept through the deadly silent Library. The large open room was fairly empty, save for a few novices and Accepted studying. Finding a nice quite place to sit was not difficult, and she pulled up a large cushioned chair with a table before her. The two books she had cradled under her arm were her favoured subjects: One on the Saidin, the Taint, and madness; the other, on Aridhol and the Shadow. Both of which, had to do with Serena’s Causes. She did not fight the Shadow with sword in hand like the Greens, but she fought them and studied them in her own way. And, she did not study the effects of the Taint on the male half of the True Source, like the Yellows did; but she could not help but be curious, compassionate and somewhat sympathetic. Those men didn’t have a choice, yet they were punished for it. After summoning a novice to bring her some tea, and using an immense amount of will-power to not take out her flask and pour something a little “extra” in it, she leaned forward and began to read. As her eyes swept over the material, she began to relax. Odd, that, reading material on some of the most dangerous and frightening events and individuals could make one feel more at ease. Serena Morrigan Blue Ajah Head
  12. 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
  13. As Serena’s sobs rattled through her, she cursed herself for being a weak woman, let alone any type of Aes Sedai. If the woman seriously thought about it, she would have found it difficult to pinpoint the last time she had cried. The Tower, and the symbol of what it meant to be Aes Sedai, was tough on the soul. Although her tears were silent, and she did not wail like a toddler, the Blue Sister did not know that Thera had moved. The lithe and agile Tower Guard slipped from her seat and knelt at Serena’s feet. The warm and strong hands that held her own were callused from sword-use, yet soft and inviting. A longing in her heart seemed to pull at her chest as she yearned to be in Thera’s arms again. Through tear-blurred eyes, she looked down at the beautiful woman as her small hands were being lifted to Thera’s inviting lips. If it had been another time, some year in the past, Serena would have cracked a joke about being so close to her lips, or kissing the wrong area; not now, though. Now, it was the perfect gesture, and it made her tears sting in the corners of her eyes again. Crumpling forward, she let them fall again. Looking into those caramel coloured eyes was almost painful, and when her once-lover began to speak and explain her side of the story, Serena could do nothing but want to shake her head. No, this was not you, my love. As Thera’s story progressed, and the details of her own pain and emotional upheaval became relevant, she felt even worse. What had she done to the woman? How could she not have been there for her? When the Mistress of Trainees spoke of Jasin, her husband, and how they were still wed, it stung like nettles that had been swept up by the wind and thrown hard at her skin; and when she found out that the child was not Thera’s, had that made the pain of her lover’s miscarriage any lighter to bare? No. The woman was stronger than Serena could ever be, stronger than she could ever imagine, and where had she been? Nowhere to be found, neck deep in her self-pity. Pulling one hand free, although she would have preferred to keep it against those soft, full lips, she placed her hand on the side of Thera’s face, and ran her small ivory coloured thumb along the smooth skin of her cheek-bone. Light, those eyes could melt the Creator. “Thera, beautiful Thera.” Serena’s emerald eyes danced in the firelight, and shimmered with her tears. Tilting her head to the side, she took in all that was the image of beauty and love, before her. “I have missed you, and my heart has never stopped longing for you. I have lived in fear that you despised me, and I would have understood if you had. In such a short time, you have become stronger and bathed in more beauty than before I had left.” She dropped her gaze from Thera’s. “I have been weak, and should cast down my shawl, for I have behaved like no Aes Sedai.” “Could you…” She swallowed the lump of tension in her throat. “…Could you ever forgive me, Thera Trakelyn? For what I did to you, for not being around when you needed me the most, for not being there for you?” Light, she felt like a bloody child. Fear swarmed like butterflies flapping against her stomach lining. If the woman could not forgive her, she knew she would break again. The physical manifestation of herself would go on, but she would refuse to feel anything at all. Aes Sedai numbed most of their human feelings, but her love for Thera had been the last thing she could hold onto. Sucking up her pride, she bit down on her lower lip, and looked into Thera’s eyes. The Blue would be hurt if the other woman could not accept her, but Serena would always love her. She did not expect a full recovery of their relationship, she did not know if it could ever be salvaged, although she hoped somewhere deep within her, that there was at least a dim light at the end of that tunnel. Serena Morrigan Blue Ajah OOC: Serena’s apology and mine. Sorry, for once again going insane with work.
  14. "An army, Sister? Is that all you've heard?" Light, had the woman not heard the rumours in the cities she has passed through on her journey towards the Tower? "Well, you could call it merely an army if one lived in the Age of Legends; and even then..." Serena trailed off with her thoughts. No, not even in the Age of Legends were men bred to channel the One Power as a weapon, they had been much the same as the Aes Sedai were now. Shaking her head, she placed both her feet firmly on the floor and sat up, leaning in towards the elder Aes Sedai. "I understand that you keep your network where you do, and that you feel the need to travel, but also know that much has happened since you have been gone." Moving forward, as if to sit on the edge of her seat, Serena felt as if she almost might whisper the news for fear of any affect it might have on Miya. "This army he has is full of what he calls, Asha'man. They channel saidin, and use it as a weapon." She paused, and wondered if she might summon a novice for some tea, but cleared her throat and continued. "Awhile ago, while Sirayn Simeone was the Amyrlin Seat, several of us were sent out to their base." Her lips curled in a sardonic smile. "The Black Tower. "And, Sister, they captured and bonded us. Not that I am suprised after the events of Dumai's Well." Serena shook her head in exasperation. Light! That had been a bloody mistake. Furrowing her eyebrows momentarily, Serena tilted her head to the side in question, "You do know of that disaster of a plan?" How long had the woman been gone? Serena Morrigan Blue Ajah Head
  15. With one small hand placed on the stone mantle of her fireplace, Serena looked into a mirror across the room from her. She had on her best long blue coat and breeches, for today was a momentous occasion and one for all of the Blue Ajah to celebrate. A new Sister was being Raised to the Shawl, and with either great persuasion from the Blue’s through her years of traing, or by sheer luck, the woman had chosen the Blue Ajah. Gianna Riatin…Serena went over the young woman ‘s name in her mind. It would be a pleasure to welcome her home, the Saldaean nodded to herself. Gliding towards the door to her rooms, Serena reached out quickly, grabbed her shawl, and wrapped it around her shoulders. Granted, her blue coat with the embroidered flame of Tar Valon on the breast and back of it would regularly have proven enough; she could not go without formalities today. Momentarily her dark eyebrows furrowed, and she wondered if the other Heads of their Ajah’s physically went out and greeted their new Ajah Sister, or did they wait for the new woman to come to them? Tousling her short raven coloured hair, she shrugged and headed out into the hallway. It would only be moments before Gianna would be entering the Blue Quarters. Stepping out into the corridor, Serena walked purposefully towards the gathering crowd of her Ajah Sisters and waited patiently. One could almost feel the excitement build right there in the hallway as they waited to welcome Gianna Riatin home, and when she came through those doors wearing not a stitch and clothed only in the Light, Serena nodded and smiled with pride. Yes, she would witness the growth of her Ajah, and it was happening before her very eyes. The diminutive Saldaean Aes Sedai had stood amongst her Ajah and greeted their newer Sisters plenty of times before; however, before she was voted into her position as the First Selector, she would have let her emerald eyes take in every curve, every freckle, and every goosebump that graced their new Sisters’ bare flesh. Now, she simply couldn’t. Yes, she prided herself on being unconventional at times, but not when it came to her new position and respecting the new Blues. She couldn’t ogle them all, for the sake of the Creator! Smirking at her thoughts, she watched as Gianna made her way through the crowd and noticed that the woman’s skin had been marred with marks of a penance. Serena’s eyes went to Estel’s and she could see the amusement in the Domani’s eyes, and remembered a certain Raising of a particular blue haired and bruised novice. The familiar spark of mischief lit within the Saldaean and she grinned to herself, Yes, she will make a wonderful addition to the Blue. Miya seemed to be the one that would receive the blueberry pie this time. Was that a hint of pleasure in the elder Aes Sedai’s eyes? At last, Gianna was led to Serena. An odd feeling of overwhelming emotion swept over Serena, and she felt as if she might shed a tear. Light, she had become too bloody emotional since arriving back at the White Tower. Serena took Gianna’s head in both of her hands and kissed her on both cheeks before pulling back and looking the woman directly in her eyes. A smile graced the Saldaean Blue’s lips and she let it touch her eyes, “Welcome home, Gianna Riatin Aes Sedai, Sister of the Blue Ajah. We have waited long for you.” As she spoke, she put emphasis on the word “sister”. More likely than not, the fact that Gianna was Aes Sedai would not have sunken in with her just yet, and Serena remembered just how wonderful and astonishing the words had actually sounded. Raising her voice, she announced to her Ajah. “Aes Sedai of the Blue Ajah, please welcome Gianna Riatin as your Ajah Sister.” As Serena released Gianna, she and Miya shared a glance and the elder Aes Sedai was off down the corridors to grab an age old tradition of the Blue’s. The staff. She wondered which Miya would choose, and what Gianna would think. “Now, while we wait for Miya to return, I am guessing you might want to obtain some clothing.” Smiling in her mischievous way, Serena led Gianna to a door, and opened it for her. “These will be your rooms, Sister. As much as we enjoy the view, please take the time to dress yourself. Only if you wish, that is.” She added the last with a wink. “Miya will meet you out side of your rooms as soon as you are ready." Serena Morrigan Blue Ajah Head
  16. Digging her fingers down into the dirt she had freshly tilled, NDaye wiggled them around in the cool damp earth and tightened her fist. Tiny grains of mud smooshed against the palm of her pale hand and oozed out between her fingers. The Illianer novice smirked and let out a breath of relief. Light, it felt good to be back with her hands in the ground again. Tower life was not easy, but the accommodations, food, and even some of the people were better than the alternative. The Perfumed Quarter had not given her much except grief and pain; glancing down at the flattened dirt in the palm of her hand, she shook her head. No, that do no be true. The earth did always grant me salvation. NDaye kept to herself, mostly. Not many of the other girls seemed to want to come too close to her. Granted, her pale skin, oily chin length dark brown hair and circles under her gray eyes didn’t make her much of an appealing person to want to approach. She shrugged as she dug her hands into the ground again and yanked at a weed, it suited her fine. The less the others approached her, the less she had to feign that she cared. Never having learned social skills while she was growing up made it quite difficult for her to communicate. Biting down on the inside of her cheek as she worked, NDaye nearly had a heart attack or jumped right out of shoes when she heard a voice arise from behind her. "Do you...Be you alright?" “Fortune prick me!! What in the bloody Light do you be doing?” Her heart jumped up into her throat as she ran a hand through her hair. The other girls voice was low and soft, she hadn’t meant to startle her, no doubt; but this was a rare occasion. Clearing her throat, NDaye gathered herself as she pressed her dirty palms down onto the skirt of her dress. Pursing her lips, she narrowed her eyes at the other girl in confusion and speculation. What did she want from NDaye? "NDaye, right?" Her voice grew a little louder as she continued "How does your weeding go?" “Yes, that do be my name.” Surprise painted NDaye's face as she wondered how anyone had paid attention enough to hear and remember her name. Light, what was the other girls name? “Rytali?” She waited for the other novice to nod in recognition before going on. “Honestly, it do be hotter than the Dark One’s back side, if you do be asking me.” The sun seemed to respond and the heat of its’ rays felt as if it might burn her skin to a crisp. NDaye had been an night-owl before coming to the White Tower, and had only recently accepted that she had to go out into the day light; however, it had not been without a little persuasion. “They did stick you with this accursed chore as well? Does it be going well for you?” There! She had done it! Now, with Fortunes’ good luck the novice should turn and leave NDaye to her own devices. NDaye Kishar Novice Slightly...odd
  17. Serena’s eyes quickly passed over the elder Aes Sedai as the woman greeted the two of them at the door. The full gray bun knotted neatly on her head was a definitive symbol of Miya’s age. Sister’s had to be up in many years to have their whole head of hair go gray or white. It was odd to see such a sign of age with an ageless face set up against it: No lines, no darker spots that came with the years, just smooth everlasting skin. Nodding, Serena let Miya dismiss the novice as she had been the one to summon the girl. Tilting her head to the side, the Saldaean Sister watched the scene before her and wondered if she had missed something completely. Had the novice been so jumpy before entering Miya Sedai’s rooms? And why would her Sister be so interested in the young girl? Pressing her lips together in thought, Serena resolved to make a note of the behavior displayed before her and look into it later. “I hadn’t expected you to stop by so soon. I would have had my reports prepared for you by tomorrow afternoon - I do hope that everything has been well here in my absence?” Absence? It could almost have been a hiatus for all Serena knew. A sardonic smirk touched Serena’s lips as she took a seat near the hearth. “Well, Sister, that depends on what you mean by ‘well’?” Leaning back in the large chair, the diminutive Aes Sedai crossed her legs, feigning ease and comfort. She gestured for Miya Kiyoshi to take a seat of her own. Yes, she knew she had come too soon, and she should have followed the light-forsaken protocol; but the thing was, she liked to keep them guessing. When would she follow tradition, and when would she seemingly throw protocol to the wind? Emerald eyes shone with the flame from the fire dancing in her irises as she regarded the woman before her. Through her agelessness, the woman appeared weary from travel, and rightly so. Who really knew how long she’d been on the road? Serena’s eyes drifted out towards the window, and she watched the clouds as they drifted through the sky. Pressing her index finger to her lips in thought, she asked, “How long has it been since you have been here within the Tower walls, Sister? I assure you, much has changed. I honour your work traveling from place to place, nation to nation; and I, too, am a traveler. It must be something born within a Blue.” She mused. The only Blue she had known not to spend a considerable amount of time outside of the Tower was Keraselle Morveine. She had her reasons, Serena supposed. “However, it leaves me to wonder, what do you know of what is going on inside of the White Tower?” Serena turned towards Miya, her eyes piercing, yet not threatening. Before she spilled everything onto the table, she needed to know how much her Sister already knew, and to pick and choose between what she actually needed to know. Perhaps everything… Serena Morrigan Blue Ajah Head
  18. Oh, Light! The woman had asked her the one question that Serena did not want to have to answer. The question would open a can of worms so large that no eagle, hawk or other giant bird could pick up every piece and put it in its place. Yes, we have both changed. Serena’s eyes swept over Thera’s form once more, and could not help but notice all of the physical changes, as well as the stern and motherly look in her eyes. Sharing a grin with herself, the Blue Sister took all that she could muster, as to not let a small laugh escape her lips. Never in a million years could she ever have pictured Thera Gaidar as a mother. Not that she wasn’t capable of it; by no means did Serena mean that. It was merely the excessive drinking and dangerous lifestyle. Serena had changed as well, but for the worst. Her heart and soul had been torn out of her very existence and left on the line to be flayed instead of dried. Her sanity was questionable, and she was not sure which man could have offered his hand in that. Perhaps the breaking of the Bond with Thera had a piece to play in that as well. Biting down on the inside of her lower lip, Serena took a seat across from Thera and leaned back, feigning comfort and ease. Taking a sip of her wine she averted her eyes to the dark liquid inside of the cup, instead of watching the beautiful woman before her. A change from her normal habit. She trusted Thera. If there was anyone in this Light-forsaken world that she could put faith and trust in, it was her. Like a knife, a pain seemed to stab her in her chest, right where her heart would be. It was cold, and felt like a hard ball of coal. Obviously, she had not trusted the woman or had faith in her while they were bonded, otherwise they wouldn’t have had the problems that they did. “Where have you been! I know that it is my fault that we are no longer bonded, but I could find no news of you for over a year. I feared you were dead…I thought…..” Serena spluttered as she heard Thera’s words. Lifting her face from her cup, her lips curled in a smile and her eyebrows furrowed. Her face was an obvious contradiction, and she was completely astonished. “What?!” Serena dabbed at her mouth as she tried to collect herself. Was Thera serious? Setting her goblet down on a glass table between them, the Aes Sedai smoothed her hands on her breeches before sitting back up. Tilting her head to the side, her smile a thing of the past, Serena shook her head as she spoke. “Thera, I will tell you where I have been, and what I have been up to; however, do not think for a moment that this was all your fault. This…” She waved her hand in the air to simulate the situation that had occurred between the two of them. “…wall that has been erected between us. “ Out of the corner of her eye she caught the flames dancing on the hearth; licking at the log that it burned to ash. Serena had always loved to sit by the fire, especially when she was curled in the arms of her lover on a cold winters’ night. Giving her head a brief shake as if to knock the image of years past out of her mind, the Aes Sedai reached into her coat pocket and produced her ornately carved pipe. Hopefully, the diversion of her hand reaching into her coat would have distracted Thera from noticing the slight shake of her head. Again, the Blue scoffed at herself. Thera was much too smart to fall for Serena’s feeble attempt at Daes Dae’mar. Naturally, as a Blue, Serena was better than decent at the Game of Houses; but, not in this moment. Nor did she think she really wanted to be. The Saldaean would have sliced her chest open and laid her heart bare on the table before them for Thera to see, and to deal with as she wanted. However, an Aes Sedai had to hold onto some kind of dignity, didn’t she? Producing a silver box from a hidden drawer beneath the table, Serena withdrew a small amount of tabac and placed it in her pipe. As she did so, she leaned backwards again, and placed the stem of the pipe in her mouth. Her teeth clicked on the smooth wood as her lips wrapped around it. Two fingers, her index and middle, seemed to tickle the air as she channeled a small strand of Fire to light her pipe. Sighing, she began. “When I..when we..” Oh, this is starting out fabulously, Aes Sedai. She mocked herself. Serena cleared her throat and pulled from her pipe. “After being released from the bond from Asha’man Arath Faringal , we returned to the Tower in shambles, you and I. What we had and what I lost bared a weight on me I could not understand, and could not stomach. I took off to the Borderlands to defend the Blight as my people do. Yes, I may have been going for some of the wrong reasons, but I could not face the circumstances here any longer. Not after…” The release of the bond…she finished in her head. Light, this was so much harder than she had ever thought. “While in Shienar , I chased a Darkfriend into the Blight, and while there I ran into a lost Gaidin. He was broken, and determined to kill every last scrap of Shadowspawn in the bloody Blight. His Sedai…had been lost to them.” Serena’s face reddened with rage at herself for not being able to save the blasted man. Her heart ached with his pain, and it broke again when he died. No, she had not loved him like her other Warders, and none as much as she had loved Thera. It was during her explanation of Bonding Elessar that Serena suddenly worried about what Thera might think of her once she found out that she had not had his word to do so. “Thera, you must know, I Bonded him against his will.” There, it was out in the open now. Damn her and her empathy for dying men. She raised a small hand before her, as if to stop Thera before she could rebut. “He was dying, Thera He was committing suicide and I could not stand by and watch him do so. I realize that I am no Green, and perhaps that is why he died anyways. I could not help him, I could not save him. I betrayed him by not giving him a choice, and he died none-the-less.” The pain of his death rang true. Her blood boiled with anger at herself, and her own stupidity. Tears welled in her eyes and she hunched forward in a sob. She could NOT be expected to be over a Bondmates death in merely a year, but she felt weaker for it. “Light…I tried to save him.” Her Three Oaths kept her from lying, so Thera must know that it was how she truly felt. Reaching forward for her goblet, she buried her face in her wine and took a sip to calm her nerves. “I apologize, Thera. I did not mean for our night to begin like this.” Clearing her throat once more, she collected what dignity she had left and continued. “Once he passed into the last embrace of the Mother, I took off for the White Tower. I could not keep running from the truth and pain that resided here, and that followed me. When I arrived and saw your daughter, I was overjoyed for you that you had given birth to such a wonderful little being; yet, it pained me greatly that I was not the one you were bonded in heart and soul to.” Well, there it was. Laid bare on the table. An Aes Sedai, reduced to sobs and shame. Serena Morrigan Blue Ajah
  19. Miya Kiyoshi... Now there was a name that hadn't been spoken around the Blue Quarters much in quite some time. Serena took the envelope and broke the seal. Both eyebrows arched upwards as she read the contents of the letter. Light, the woman's returned! It wasn't uncommon for Sisters to leave the Tower and not return for years; but this particular one had been gone almost as long as Serena had been in the White Tower, or longer. Serena hardly knew the woman, other than the fact that she had been out of the Tower for ages. Miya Kiyoshi was by no means a young Sister, and would most likely be quite suprised to see the Ajah being lead by one such as herself. The "rogue" Ajah Head. Furrowing her brow, she resolved that she would not defer to the woman just because she was much younger and slightly different. No, Serena was the First Selector, and she would hold her position with dignity. Glancing over at the novice, Serena could tell that the girl was exhausted, and rightly so. The life of a novice was not easy; however, she wasn't sure which room was Miya's and would have to be led there. "Child, what is your name? I am Serena Sedai." Her voice was low and smooth like velvet. Once the novice spoke her name, Serena nodded. "Well, Serey, you must be tired from your lessons and chores; however, I will need you to guide me to Miya Sedai's rooms, then you can go unless she has something else for you to do." It wasn't common for the Ajah Head to be summoned to someone elses rooms, but Serena felt she would go to the returning Sister, instead of the other way around. Plus, the novice was tired, and to send her traipsing around the Blue Ajah halls would be ridiculous. The two of them headed down the hall; one of them gliding silently in her long blue coat and breeches, and the other just keeping pace in her white novice dress. The walk to Miya's rooms was a short one, and Serena was suprised that she had not known or remembered whom it was that belonged behind this particular door. Mentally, she made a note to no make that mistake again. With Serey standing beside her, Serena raised her hand to knock, and did so loudly and determinedly. A part of her wanted to press the palms of her hands onto her coat to smooth out the invisible wrinkles. Light, woman! She's just another Sister, and you are the Head of the bloody Ajah. Act it! The Saldaean Blue lifted her chin, and set her eyes straight before her. She was not sure how tall the other woman would be, and she needed all the leverage she could get at her height. Serena Sedai Blue Ajah Head
  20. Chewing on the inside of her lower lip, Serena went down a list of names for a second time. Each name had either a star or a check mark placed next to it. Tilting her head to the side, the Aes Sedai regarded a name freshly scrawled before her. Neither a star, nor a check mark had been made. Pursing her lips in contemplative thought, she reached for her ornately carved pipe and packed it full of tabac. Thoughtfully, she tamped the bowl of the pipe with her thumb, then went to light it with a thin strand of Fire. "Minerva Miagoma..." The raven-haired Aes Sedai said between soft pulls from her pipe. Smoke curled and whisped through the air like silvery fingers, as she spoke the woman's name. The list before her was a group of names of only a small piece of the Blue Ajah's Eyes and Ears. This particular woman, none of the Sisters of the Blue had heard neither hide nor hair of, and when an informant disappeared, it was often cause for worry. Leaning back in her chair, she propped a black leather boot up onto her desk, and ran her free hand up the laces to her knee. Swiftly, she slipped her small ivory hand into her boot and drew out one of the five knives she had hidden on her. Often, while the Aes Sedai was distracted with her thoughts, she would twirl her blades between her fingers; and the small sapphire on the tip of each hilt would glitter passed her emerald green eyes. Letting a small smirk approach her lips, an amused laugh escaped. Here she was, appearing completely at ease, with her feet propped up on a desk that had been used by hundreds of women whom the Ajah had voted into a position of esteemed rank and respect, twirling blades and smoking a pipe. "Yes, highly respected, I'm sure." The only other Head of the Ajah that she was anything similar to, would have been Espara A'Dautry, and Light did she miss that woman. "Well, if 'Para could do it..." She nodded and took in another breath of smoke. Seemingly out of nowhere came a knock on her door. It did not sound like the urgent knock of a servant, or the determined and authoritative sound of a Sister's knock. "Hmm.." Serena mused and dropped her feet softly back onto the floor. Gently and carefully, she placed her delicate pipe onto her desk and briefly channelled Air to drop a small stone inside of it to smother any fire that might be left. Tossing a small hand into the air she disengaged her Alarm Wards, and went to the door. What an odd manner of knocking... Her curiosity and been spiked and she planned to open the door herself, instead of channeling. A fair skinned girl with her face splashed in freckles stood staring right back at her. Luckily, the Saldaean Blue had worn her heeled boots, so she at least came face to face with the novice. Although, it had been years since anyone had used her height as a deficiency. Tilting her head to the side, Serena's emerald eyes regarded the girl and noticed she was carrying a sealed envelope. Arching a dark eyebrow at the brown eyes before her, she said, "Hello, Child. Is there something I can help you with?" Serena Morrigan Aes Sedai Head of the Blues
  21. Biting down on the nail on her thumb, Serena regarded the storm clouds outside of her window. They roiled and curled, and shed tear-like droplets that caressed the pained glass that set in her windows. The rhythmic tapping of the rain would have lulled her into a trance like state, or sleep, if she let it. Removing her thumb from her mouth, she replaced it’s spot with the stem of her pipe and bit down hard on it. Her teeth clacked on the innately carved wood, before she set into drawing smoke from within it. The Aes Sedai’s emerald eyes studied the busy souls that rushed in the rain across the courtyard a few stories below. One of them would be Thera, no doubt. Light! Her heart jumped into her throat with merely the thought of her once-Gaidar. The woman would be making her way to the quarters of the Blue Ajah, over the blue tiles of the cool corridors, and straight to her rooms. It seemed like Ages had passed since the beautiful, warm, and feisty soul had been so close. Colour crept its’ way into Serena’s ivory cheeks, and she blushed like a novice having been caught staring too hard at the Trainees in the Yard. Woman! You will be two centuries old in less than two more decades, and you still act a fool when it comes to Thera! You are no child fresh off of apron strings. You are Aes Sedai, fool-woman! No matter how old she was, being wrapped in the Mistress of Trainees arms earlier that day had been like coming home. The comfort, the warmth, the love, the passion- everything that she had missed in the years that had passed. One day, Thera would be gone, and Serena would be left to live on without the woman; Age, would take all the Warders and Tower Guards one day, and the Aes Sedai would hardly have the sign of age on them. Shaking her head, Serena could not bare to think of losing Thera completely. Yes, she had thought she had lost her love already, but she knew that the woman lived on. Once death took her…. No, I cannot think of that. Those thoughts were the ones that had been responsible for her to distance herself from her Gaidar years ago. She loved the woman, and she had come to understand that she could not protect a Warder from doing their job, no matter how much she loved them. It was what they did, it was what they lived for. Sometimes, Serena wondered if it was really the Tower Gaurds that Served All, by serving the Aes Sedai and the White Tower. If an outsider were to look in on her, they would see her and regard her for looking absentminded; however, the diminutive Aes Sedai was aware of her surroundings, and was merely being caught by her thoughts momentarily. It was like being swept into a current of nostalgia. Light, the things that Thera’s embrace had done to her. Feeling the woman pressed up against her…breathing in her scent… A firm knock lifted Serena out of her thoughts and she got to her feet with confidence. She ran a small ivory hand through her short raven coloured hair and set her jaw. Cool serenity swept across her features, and tilted emerald eyes glinted with mischief momentarily. Rose coloured lips smirked at the spark in her eyes, and she could see pieces of her “old self” again. Nodding, she ran her palm across her jacket and checked the buttons down the chest of her coat. Smoothly, Serena seemed to glide across the hard wood floor towards the door. She released the Alarm Wards around the threshold, and opened the door. The sight on the other side was breathtaking, and it made a gasp escape between her parted lips. Warm red curls seemed to reflect the golden light that was being given off by the candlelit sconces on either side of her door. The Mistress of Trainees seemed a powerful woman, yet, somehow, still the young Tower Guard that Serena had bonded all those years ago. Yes, age, experience, and childbearing had changed the other woman; but hints of her younger years swept through her features. “Thera,” the Saldaean Aes Sedai breathed. Shaking her head in disbelief and to set her thoughts on a more lucid path, the Blue Sister cleared her throat. As she let her eyes glance over Thera again, she noticed the glistening droplets of water on her cloak and quickly spun a weave of Air to remove and dry the other woman. Why hadn’t she thought of that before? Light, she had let the her soak! Afraid of what might happen if Serena invited Thera into her rooms, she was unsure of the next move to make. Stepping backwards slightly into her quarters, she gestured into the room. “I have not been very hospitable, I apologize, letting you stand out here in the hall…would you like to come in for a moment, or shall we proceed into the City?” Fool woman!! She cursed herself. Where was her Aes Sedai calm? Where were her years of training and schooling her features to appear to be the icy and commanding woman she had become? Gone. Thera knew Serena, better than anyone in the White Tower, or without. The Aes Sedai had cast aside her her visage for the Tower Guard once before, and was finding it easier to keep things simple. Serena had to pull pieces of her Aes Sedai mask off. Maybe not all at once, and maybe not all of it, ever; but she had to show her true self, if she wished to be part of Thera's life again. Serena Morrigan Blue Ajah Cursing her light-fool self
  22. Gasping from shock and surprise of the feel of well-toned arms wrapping her up into a swift embrace, Serena reached out to the One Power to Shield herself from whatever strange attack that had just occurred. Her mind was wrapped up in a mechanical wheel of thoughts of worry, anxiety and “what-if”. The corners of her eyes burned with threatening tears, and as she was swept up by this strange force, the tears fell. A beautiful scent of lavender and rosemary filled her nostrils as gorgeous red hair caressed her face. Soft skin nuzzled up against her neck, and even velvet-like lips grazed her neck. An ample bosom pressed up against her own, and it seemed to heave deliciously with each breath. Thera! Serena cried out in her mind as she released her touch on the True Source. There was no threat here. Light, she had wanted and willed for this moment to occur, and now…she could do nothing but wrap her arms around the other woman. Her right hand wrapped behind Thera and up into her hair. She cradled the back of her former Gaidar’s head and gently ran her fingers through hair like spun red-gold. “Thera…” Her tears streaked down her cheeks. Pulling away from the other woman, she placed both of her hands on either side of Thera’s face and looked deeply into those warm caramel ones. She had yearned for so long to be wrapped back up in their warmth, to be all that those eyes could see when it came to matters of the heart. Tilted emerald eyes sparkled with love and tears that had not trickled down her face with the others, yet. Aes Sedai should not act like this, not in public, and definitely not mere steps from outside the Tower walls. Serena cast aside all care for trivial things like rules of etiquette. This was the woman she loved, for the sake of the Creator, and all things holy! Not a care in the world, except for the one she loved. Light, her heart ached. “I have never…ever…stopped…” Should she tell her she still loved her? How could she not? She didn’t want to frighten the woman off by using such strong words, and after she had turned her back on Thera years ago. Not finishing her sentence, she pulled the woman’s face towards hers and she placed her lips upon Thera's. The same surge of electric passion that had ignited from a mere touch of their hands, seemed to magnify as their supple lips met. To Serena, at least, it was as if the whole world had stopped moving and just the two of them remained. Pulling away from the kiss was as hard as pulling to magnets apart. Her soul ached for their bodies to be touching, for their lips to meet once more, and to be wrapped in each other’s arms. Small ivory hands remained cradling Thera’s head as Serena pulled away slowly. Her eyes closed and she pressed her forehead against Thera’s. “Please, let’s meet.” She whispered breathlessly
  23. Flames burned in Serena’s cheeks as she opened her mouth to speak. Her throat made a strained squeaking sound as words refused to form on her lips. Warm eyes stared into hers as she said something was…”perfect”. What was perfect? Had she really been telling Serena that, and not her daughters’ doll? Although her chest was tightening as if her heart were in a vice, Thera’s words, drifting off of her beautiful soft lips had been a comfort to her. Her voice was melodious and caressed the Aes Sedai’s ears, making the hair on the back of her neck stand on end as if she had been electrified. “How…. Are you…… here? Why….I..mean…you are not..I wish…." Thera had stumbled over her words. This great warrior of a woman was diminished to a stuttering girl, just as Serena had felt. No, she’s done better than I. Words won’t even come out of my blasted mouth! However, it was a comfort, nonetheless. Wait... What was it that she had ‘wished’? Could it be possible that the woman still felt the same way that she did? Or was she still just so incredibly destroyed over the annulment of their incredible Bond, of duty AND soul, that she was too angry to even speak? The tightness in her chest gripped at her throat, and Serena ached to wrap her arms around Thera. Were those magnificently ardent eyes misting over with tears? Oh, Light! Aes Sedai were to be like rocks in times of need, strife, and danger; never to give into their emotions or think impulsively, lest it be the demise of a larger cause. Servants of All, in the Old Tongue…yet, they were forced to deny their own needs and emotions in the stead of relieving and assisting those in need, casting aside the human desire for love and the intensity of a relationship with another being. Granted, it was said that the intensity of channeling the One Power should be enough for any woman channeling it, and it was a glorious and addictive substance at that; but never did it embrace you, the way you embraced it. Never, did you feel the heat of its’ skin pressed up against yours. Never, did its’ lips caress yours with gentle or fervent passion. Feeling weak and weathered from her struggle to keep her emotions trapped inside a metal box within her soul, Serena could stand it no longer and dropped to her knees like a rock being tossed into a stream. She sunk to the hard wooden floor and let her emotions wash over her like a current. Shaking, her hand reached out to cradle the smooth and warm skin of woman she knew she would always love, whether the feeling was mutual or not. Her fingers trembled as she feared the other woman would refuse her touch and cringe away from her. The exhilarating tingle of the woman’s flesh encouraged her to continue on. A tear streaked down Thera’s cheek and onto Serena’s hand, and glistened on her skin. The Saldaean woman had not ever thought that her former Gaidar could be anymore beautiful, but in this moment…she was bathed in ethereal splendor. Divine Beauty. “Thera,” She whispered again and tears shimmered in her eyes and spilled down her ivory cheeks. “I am.. so sorry…” She wanted to tell the woman how she thought of her always; how, in the peaceful moments before bed, or in the midst of battle, it was Thera who crept into her mind. She wanted to tell her she loved her, and craved to be held in her arms once more. There was so much she wanted… “I never stopped…” …loving you, yearning for you.. Her emerald eyes drifted towards the beautiful little toddler, who stared back and forth between the two of them with wide eyes and wonder. Serena smiled at the girl, then winced and let tears stream down her cheeks. The aching in her chest persevered, threatening to crush her through her sternum. The small woman pushed up onto her feet, and as she rose she leaned forward, gently held Thera’s head in her hands, and kissed her beloved on the forehead. The same surging spark from their touch earlier tingled on her lips, and she craved more. With all the force in the world, she stood, and turned away from the one she knew she was tied eternally to. Her heart cracked and shattered and she thought her knees might give way once more, but she willed her legs to hold her. I cannot put that child through any pain. It is not just Thera anymore, and she is bloody married and with a child! Damn you, woman! She cursed herself. The only way she did not look back, was by picturing the child’s face. Serena could not bare to hurt anyone she loved anymore, especially to marr the innocence of a child for her own selfish needs. It was more than a need, though…it was a yearning. An aching, painful yearning for her love. Serena Morrigan Blue Ajah
  24. A lump formed in the Aes Sedai's throat as the familiar sound of the large wooden door that led out to the Yards clicked shut behind her. Biting down on the inside of her cheek she willed herself not to let the tears continue to fall down her ivory cheeks. Was it really possible that the anullment of her bond to Thera Trakelyn had been more painful than the deaths of the others? Light, she was sure it was so. Serena clenched her teeth as she stalked swiftly down the corridor. A sound that resembled a growl seemed to emanate from her throat, which caused any passers-by to either stare in wonder, or quickly dart out of the way.Rage seemed to fill her as if she were a glass brimming with red wine; and her ivory skin began to turn red with the emotion. Who am I mad at? What in the bloody Light am I doing? I can't be mad at her for getting married and having a child. It's my bloody fault she isn't still my Bondmate and... She winced as she thought and she could only paint her feelings as being painful. It was her fault that Thera was no longer hers; be it Bondmate or lover, it was Serena that had broken it all off and let the woman go. I couldn't stand by and watch that man fall head over heals for her and have his heart ripped out by my decision. He obviously cares for her better than I ever could...or did Jaw aching with the strain of barred teeth, she clenched down even harder. Was that the rusty taste of blood that filled her mouth? The Blue almost welcomed it. She wanted to scream with the agony she felt as the vision of Thera and her beautiful daughter kept invading her sight. Her once Gaidar truly was the Warrior Goddess of the painting in her rooms, but Serena, Serena was nothing. She should not have even had herself painted into that bloody picture. The lump that had formed in her throat appeared to be tearing apart her chest, now. Breath seemed hard to come by, and she wasn't sure if she shouldn't stop and take a minute to catch it. No, stopping would not be smart. It would give her emotional strife a chance to catch up with her, and she couldn't have that. It was already enough that she had let her emotions and pain get to her like an untrained novice. Her many years in the White Tower, and under the scrutiny of other Sisters, had taught her how to seperate her feelings from reality. She had learned how to look at things from all angles in a cool fashion so that her decisions would not be biased, or be made impulsively. Now, she was a ruined mess. Silently, she thanked the Light that she had no classes to teach and no Mentees to watch over that afternoon. Most likely, the woman wouldn't even be able to put a sentance together, or sound even half-way sane. Shaking her head, she cursed herself out loud, not caring who heard her. "No Aes Sedai should act like this. Can you even call yourself that, now? You are a broken cowardly fool!" It was not long before Serena found herself in the streets of Tar Valon. In a bloody toy shop, none-the-less!What in the bloody Light am I doing here? Teeth still clenched shut, and dark eyebrows drawn down to create a deep crease between them, the Aes Sedai was a strange sight in a childrens store. How had she wandered here, of all places? Dolls lined one wall, dressed in silken robes, and crafted from porcelain and other fine resources. For a moment, a familiar smirk crept onto her lips, and noticed that some of the dolls were split into seven colours of dress. One for each Ajah perhaps. Would the artisan truly have tried to make dolls of Aes Sedai right there in the heart of Tar Valon? Serena found herself gravitating towards a dark haired doll wrapped in her favourite shades of blue; and as her hand reached out, her fingertips caressed the smooth skin of another woman's hand. An electrifying spark seemed to shoot up her arm, at that point, amplified by the beautiful eyes that stared back at her in shock. "Thera..."She whispered in longing, loosely disguised as shock. Cradling the red-haired womans face in her hand, Serena ran her thumb across the womans cheek bone, and stared longingly into her warm eyes. Her Gaidar's warmth seemed to coat the Aes Sedai's very being. At times like this, it almost seemed that a blanket was being wrapped around her soul. Leaning forward, Serena's lips softly traced the line that her thumb previously swept across. Her heart raced and she yearned for the woman she held. As her lips came to Thera's ear, Serena whispered softly, "You are my Light, my Love, my reason for being." A delicious heat rose from within her as her words finished, and the two silhouetted shadows that were cast on the wall from a dancing flame, intertwined and became one... Serena Morrigan Blue Ajah :o and :-[
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