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DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

Kura

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  1. Arcon nodded, pleased with Shadar. "Good, practice that weave often, and your skill with it will develop. There is one more Illusion weave, one that would allow you to mask your own appearance, but it is far out of your ability to do for now. I will teach it to you when you gain the rank of dread lord." Nodding to himself, he moved on, cutting the flows that blinded and deafened the man. "Irol, welcome to my rooms. I would like to use you to teach a future dreadlord, Shadar Al'Niende." His tone was sweet, an oddity delivered from an almost skeletal face like his. He locked eyes with the man, his eye patch causing one eye to quiver between that and his good eye. He loved the effect it had on people, if not the reason he had it... May squids erupt from your intestines, Mr. Sweeper. "Shadar, watch. I will demonstrate a weave with a most obvious effect. Putting someone to sleep. I'm sure you can think of the uses for such a weave." He laughed lightly, watching with a tremor of joy as the man, Irol, was nearly overcome with fear. Then, he snapped the weave into place, weaving it in an instant. It was an easy weave for Arcon to accomplish, but for Shad it would again push him. He wanted to see him get it right, with out the slow and purposeful demonstration he did of other weaves. It was another test... Weaving bands of air to constrict the throat, waking the man up from his slumber, Arcon turned to his student. "Begin."
  2. Arcon nodded, accepting the responsibility that Shad was offering him. A surrogate father... who would have thought it was in me? He knew though, that this was the strongest bond he could forge, if the most risky. He could never throw Shad away, not after tonight. To do so would form a vendetta that would end with one of them dead... and with Shad's strength. "Thank you Shadar. I swear on the Great Lord and my own ambition I will not fail you in this." It was the strongest oath he could give, both of the things he dedicated his life to in a single oath. It was stronger than a hope of salvation and rebirth for a light fool, it was the core of who he was. What made him Arcon Dadread. "I knew you were hurt when I first laid eyes on you, you seemed emotionless, but I knew they were simply buried deep. A twitch of your eye brow, your lips, they would have been the equivalent of a man screaming for soldiers to stop playing with his wife... We will start there." Arcon pulled up a chair, sitting in a few feet in front of the man. "Someone or something hurt you, I doubt it was the loss of your parents... Tell me Shad, what was it? What happened to you? Show me if you can... I have shown you the weaves." Arcon had his own weaves ready, razors and clubs of air inverted so that Shad could not see them. He would use them if needed, if Shad got to far out of control. Knock him out, heal him, and try again. They needed to get through this, had too. Arcon would not loose Shadar. He wouldn't loose a man who considered him his father; he wouldn't let a man he thought of as a son go...
  3. Adamin laughed at his sister's comment on their mother's grace. "Perhaps dear sister, but your the only one with her hips." He chuckled, knowing her thoughts on Deval, trying to make her conscious of her body. It'd do her good... I'll just have to watch it develop. He had no doubts on his sister's ability to court a man, between her figure and her eyes a man would be a blind not to notice her. Hearing the Mistress' command, he fell in beside his room mate without a word. He watched the small exchange between the two, holding back his knowing grin. "Fine, fine. Davel, riding isn't all that hard. I've only been on a boat a couple times, but when I was, I was given the advice to walk with a bit of a swagger, move with the boat, instead of trying to move on it. It is the same with a horse... Relax, pay attention to her movements, and move with them..." Adamin shot a glance at his sister, "See, look at her. Her legs aren't in a vice around the horse, she knows her foot in the stirrup is enough. She glides along with the horse, her hips moving forward with her..." He droned on for a bit longer, earning a death glare from a seemingly flushed Adela. He was purposefully drawing attention to her body, if for no other reason than his own amusement at his dear sister's discomfort. "It won't be over night, but study us Davel, and you'll be a master rider in no time." He patted the man on his back, and turned his attention back to the road. They were crossing the bridge of Tar Valon, into one of the gate towns. It was a beautiful place, but after seeing Tar Valon, it seemed rather plain. Still, it'll be good to be on the road for a bit... Adamin had adapted well to their traveling life style, and found he missed it. Freedom was something he valued, but, glancing at his sister once more with a smile, family came first. As did their reason for setting out... He refused to think of him as a brother any longer...
  4. Sereth listened to her words. Good, she feels there may be a chance. Bowing his head and kneeling in front of her, he presented his head for her to delve. "Do as you will. I'm not holding the source, if you need me to, then ask." He kept his breath even and his voice level, but he couldn't beat down that snake of hope in his chest. Come on Sereth, the Aes Sedai of the Age of Legends couldn't fix this... Are you so arrogant to think that you can do what they could not? Your basing this off of philosophy, not facts... His thoughts continued in this manner, trying to talk sense into himself. One thought however, decided it. What is there to loose? Either way you walk out wiser... and if you are right. He thanekd the creator he was already on his knees. The thought of channeling pure Saidin was almost to much to bear. "Eqwina Sedai, I'm ready when you are."
  5. Sereth's strength was nearing its end. He drew heavy breath, but channeled with all his remaining power. He watched in amazement as she leaped from stone to stone, from air to air, dodging his and Matthis' attacks. When he reached the top, Sereth's mind raced. What do I do now... He wove, copious amounts of fire stoked with air, twin walls of flame erupted, forming a sort of corridor from him to the Mistress of Trainees. He purposefully cut out Mathis, a move more to test his reaction than to do any real harm to the woman. The fires ate up oxygen, making it more and more difficult to draw breath. "You've done well Thera Trakelyn. Made it through my maze, dodging attacks, some you couldn't even see. I know several dedicated and Asha'man that couldn't do what you've done today." Sereth placed his hand upon the black leather grip of his own sword, and loosened it in it's sheath, drawing it as the woman advanced upon him. My god she is an intimidating woman... "We're both weapons, more so than this blade, Thera, we both have our purpose. But if I were you, I'd pray you are never sent against a channeler, not a Dread Lord," the Asha'man grinned. "Well, at least not when they can see you coming." Sereth wove bands of solid air, wrapping them around Thera when she was but inches from striking him. He cut the flames, looking into her eyes. "And that is how you defeat us, make sure we don't see you coming. We have five elements of defense against just about anything you can throw at us, but as Aes Sedai, a stray arrow can still find our throat, or a knife in the dark." Sereth wove a gateway, and walked through it to his house, releasing the woman. He left the gateway open for a moment, allowing her the chance to walk through if she wished. It however, took the last of his strength, and he promptly slumped against the wall. He chuckled, "Or exhausting us works... I doubt I could channel a candle alight without burning myself out at this point..." He waited for her reaction. She could win right now, laying the blade against his neck.
  6. Sereth flinched when a hand was placed on his shoulder. A deep seated fear ran through him, but he had resigned himself to his fate. Covai drew on Saidin, and Sereth closed his eyes. When enough wasn't drawn to decimate him, or worse gentle him, he opened them. Just in time to have the robe cover him. The Asha'man blinked, looking down, and then blinked several more times. The embroidery on the sleeves, he looked back to Covai, understanding donning on him. Promotion, not punishment, he was an Attack Leader, a leader of Asha'man. Perhaps the wrist, holding the sword. "Thank you Storm Leader. I..." For perhaps the first time in Sereth's life, he was at a loss for words. "I will make sure you don't regret your decision."
  7. Sereth listened intently to Tai'Dashan, nodding in agreement. The other man spoke of the heart of the matter, something the Andorian thought he could always expect from Tai, no matter the hardships he'd been through. Don't worry Tai, you'll get through this... "Tai'Dashan and I share the same reasons for attacking the Storm Leader. I have very little to add Covai, accept the man was obviously mad, or at the very least I pray to the creator that he was. If such a beast were allowed to raise to power under Brent, than you did us a larger favor than I originally thought by ridding us of the man." He steeled himself for the next part, "Which brings me to the next reason, he was Brent's man to the core, Brent disobeyed the Dragon Reborn. A recent oath, and my own heart forced me to take action against such a man." A cold drop of sweat trickled down the back of his neck. He'd acted on the oath that Covai made him take, but he feared that he'd taken it to far. "I hold no guilt for my actions Storm Leaders, so do what you must."
  8. Arcon nodded, pleased with his student's progress. He knew these weaves tested Shadar's ability to weave, but that was good, that was how he would grow. The next weave wouldn't be any easier... "Good Shadar, you have learned the basics of illusion. Let us move on to one of its purer forms." Arcon seized Saidin once again, still amazed at how fighting for his life was so... second nature. No wonder men who channeled tended to be brave, the weak were culled by their own power. He began to weave, it was simple compared to what it perhaps should have been, weaving all the elements, minus the yellow of earth into an intricate web. This web spun, molding itself into the shape a huge black spider, Arcon's houses colors stripped on the abdomen. Arcon continued to weave, the illusion shifting and staring at Shadar, it's huge pincers opening and closing. "Illusion is an infinitely useful weave, you can form anything you want with practice. It is, however, difficult to master. Try weave a simple, familiar object at first." He dismissed the spider, a beast he planned to take as his heraldry. "Begin, Shadar."
  9. Sereth held back a sigh of relief. Good, he is listening... "Well sir, we let them do what they do best. Elite squads of Asha'man, I suggest 3-8 maximum sir, each capable of inverting weaves, with at least one man on the stronger side of the tower's power scale." He studied the man, taking a moment to gauge his reaction before continuing. "The purpose of these squads is to break off from the main force. As I said, our rank and file strength is great enough that I doubt they'll be missed." "The purpose of these squads is to hunt out high priority targets, by using gateways or other means of transport. Soft targets such as supply trains, which the Trollocs must need, they have to eat even more than us if I'm not mistaken. Or perhaps to harry the rear or flanks of the main forces, or," this was the clincher, he had to present it right. "Strike squads of dreadlords." There, the bulk of his idea was out, he'd have to hammer out the finer details of it with Arath and perhaps the council later. For now it was enough to put the idea in this man's mind...
  10. Sereth Arian was sitting in the inn, sipping at one of his many herbal concoctions. This was a simple one, meant simply to rejuvenate; it gave energy and helped clear the mind. Two things he needed desperately, as he'd barely slept. Brent dead, Aria gone... Tai... He sipped again, his thoughts having revolved in these circles many times since the events of the previous day. He stood, noticing that his drink was finished, and walked towards the door of Covai's inn, thinking of his friend Tai'dashan, and the man who defeated Brent Enios only one day prior. He'd seen the mad light in Covai's eyes, but still he trusted the man. He wrote it off as nothing more than the glee of destroying a foe as vile as the former M'hael. Just as his hand touched the grain of the inn's door, a dedicated came at him. "Asha'man Arian, you are wanted to M'Hael Seriba's quarters." Sereth's eye brows shot up, now what does he want... He nodded, dismissing the dedicated, Rurial was his name. Sereth had trained the man himself. He looked around, for the first time relizing that their were full Asha'man in the room whom he had trained from the lowest rank, some he had even tested for the ability to channel. Your not old Sereth... but you've been channeling for a while now... Ruthlessly he shoved down the thoughts, he took precautions for madness. He wouldn't be caught unprepared. His thoughts returned to Covai's summons, walking to the man's quarters, where he'd been recovering from his brutal battle. When he entered, he saw three Storm Leaders, and he nodded to each in turn, a gesture of respect to each. He waited but a moment, and Tai'Dashan entered the room. He was more startled by this than he cared to say. The both of them... "I have a couple of ideas, Tsorovan'M'Hael Waeyl." He resisted the urge to sigh, realizing what it must be like to be examined by his own careful eye. No... your eye is almost always friendly. "Punishment or reward for our actions yesterday, unless I miss my guess. After all, we did play a small part in the battle." He schooled himself, keeping his voice level. He had no wish to sound condescending or arrogant, simply to present his thoughts in front of the leaders of the Tower.
  11. Adamin's smile only grew as the man spoke. The man seemed to be a pompous ass with a mean streak, but Ada held a grudging respect. He did commit to his actions. He had to hold himself back from laughter as he continued to undermined Del as a threat... Oh, if only he knew... "Too pretty for my own good?" Adamin looked astounded, shocked, "I always thought I was pretty for your mother's enjoyment, not mine..." He let the land-kisser thing go. His sister could retort it. Ada was then given his cue to act by his sterner half. It was a rather simple cue, with her remark on kicking him in the head translating to a cheap shot. No, he didn't target anything soft or reproductive in nature. Ada's long legs whipped out in an arc, aimed for the back of the knee. With the whip-like nature of his legs, it was going to hurt. That however, wasn't its real purpose. Ada didn't withdraw his leg immediately, remaining obviously off balance. His leg however, acted as a fulcrum in a great lever of embarrassment. The trick here was his sister who would follow through with the two-part attack. The goal was to have him knocked over and pinned by the beautiful form of his sister, and to then work from there. It was true, this could be considered an underhanded tactic, capitalizing on the fact that there were two of them. More than that though, it had proven effective, and always both comical and fun. The way the twins chose to live their lives. Well, one of them anyways...
  12. Arcon had kicked the pebble, letting the sound skitter through the dark room. He knew the emotional state that Shadar was in, and he needed to end it. He needed Shadar focused, under control. A jumpy assassin gets caught, and that was not what Arcon needed. At least, unless he planned for Shad to get caught... "Shadar." His voice was gentle, fatherly. He knew how Shadar felt about him... "Shadar you have done well over the past couple years, advancing quickly under my guidance." He let the praise roll off his tongue, sincere but at the same time sounding almost trivial... "Yet you seem to have been broken, that callous man that I picked up and took under my wing gone, and it has been gone ever since your test for Adept." The words would sting the man, that much he knew. Shadar wouldn't be able to handle Arcon leaving him to flounder... at least without killing the dreadlord. "Normally, I would toss you away, a tool that has lost its purpose should not be kept. But this is you, Shad, my friend, my student... I will give you the chance Shad, to reforge you into a superior blade, to serve, and to live out your life as you have chosen. But to do this, I must ask you questions, know you intimately. In order to reforge you I will need to melt you down my friend. This will not be easy." Arcon had used those words before, and knew Shad would know how much he meant them. "Who are you Shad? What have you been through? What broke you in the test?" Arcon paused... "And what are you so afraid of? What scar has left you jumping at the shadows?" His voice was gentle towards the end, concerned and filled with sincerity. "You can grasp how hard this will be, but I promise you will be stronger for it, under control of your emotions. You will be Thakan'dari Steel by the time I am done with you tonight." Arcon had never sworn an oath to Shad before, and even more strengly he didn't have to fake the conviction. Arcon didn't want to think of the attachments he had made to the man...
  13. Sereth’s body was nearly exhausted, working through the exercises that Arath had put him through. His mind however, was vibrant; relishing in the new exercises it was being put through. Still, he saw holes in the Asha’man offensive, ones that needed to be filled in if they were to succeed. He decided to bring these up with the man who’d just taught the class. “Storm Leader Arath… If I may take a moment of your time, I have a few things to talk to you about. I have some ideas about deployment strategies that might be of use to us.” He kept out the fact that he had been studying tactics as often as he had philosophy in the past. He needed these ideas to seem to stem from him, even if Arath was clever enough to know the source, or at least the inspiration of the ideas. It was still a shock to see Arath in the new coat, even though Sereth felt he deserved it long before this time. He taught nearly everyone at the Farm, and was a pivotal figure in the minds of all the Asha’man. Still… he had always be Attack Leader Farnigal… This could help him though; he was talking to a man with even more influence now. “Though our power in standard rank and file is, well, I’ll say it is down right impressive. I feel that using only this technique is a waste of our potential. We have hunters in the Tower with us, sir. We should use them.” Their, the basis of his idea. He of course had the fleshed out idea already in his mind, but needed something to keep the man’s attention. After all, he’d hardly spoken to Arath, and that first impression needed to be done away with. No matter how much better he liked his former self, this new one was more important…
  14. Arcon was standing in his personal quarters when Shadar entered. It was not a place many were permitted to enter, and the dreadlord knew that the importance of this would not be lost on his student, his favored student, Shadar Al'Niende. It was the first time he had been in here. It was not such a barren place as his students was. Books lined every corner of the room; tactics for mass battles, stealth and assassination reports that he had to bribe out of a certain librarian to get a hold of, large sections of history, and what was bound to be books containing the heraldry of every single noble family on the continent. The Carhienen was a man who liked to be thorough.. The walls were decorated with various tapestries, some traditionally dark like what would be expected of any dread lord, others looking to be stripped straight from palaces around the world. They probably were. No less than three wardrobes dominated the room, each a masterpiece of mahogany, and one didn't have to look that each was filled. It wasn't indulgence, as some might think. Arcon traveled, he needed to blend in. Each one contained a mixture of rough spun wool to fine silks, the silks undoubtedly bearing heraldry. His writing desk was in the corner, several bottles of ink laid stacked against the back wall, and the papers upon the desk were many but organized. A spider that didn't know the value of organization built a terrible web, as his father had often said. All of this was impressive, and showed more than a bit about the man that Shadar followed, but one thing would undoubtedly draw the man's attention. A man bound with flows of air to a rather impressive wooden chair. He was blindfolded with a band of black...nothing. Though for once the dreadlord left the illusion uninverted, and a carefully woven ward of silence surrounded the man. "This man is a traitor. He had betrayed a darkfriend circle to the children of the light, and he will be executed. However, he serves our purposes well. I will be using him to teach you some advanced uses of the element known as spirit. These will be useful to you in your chosen calling." Arcon almost snickered at the word. It was chosen alright, and it suited the man. It had just been chosen by Arcon. "Are you ready Shad? Some of these weaves will push your ability, if not your strength." Arcon hardly waited for an answer, knowing that with Shadar's emotional strife it was best to keep him busy when Arcon needed him. He began. The dreadlord drew forth his dagger from his hidden sheath, and wove air fire and spirit onto the object, and it began to grow into a full fledged sword, and beyond. "This is called Mirror of Mists, it is a simple weave, and all it does is alter the size of a stationary object. Though it can be used for intimidation rather easily. Draw your blades, and try it Shad." A simple weave, but one that would test the young man's ability. Arcon knew it to be on the outer limits of what he could do...
  15. Arcon Dadread stood, watching the initiate from the shadows, reading his reactions. He knew he was being watched, and Arcon used that fact, using prepared weaves that were inverted, making ghost sounds; creaks, groans, the occasional foot step. It was all a carefully constructed den of paranoia, even the edges of the hall in either direction gradually dimmed, forming the illusion that he was in some segmented part of the Fortress. He had to say he was almost impressed with Alliveer's endurance. Though Arcon knew at least a portion of it was due more to arrogance than any real control. No matter the source though, control was control, and Arcon could use it, shape it to fit his desires. It didn't matter that the man knew he was being shaped, he'd still think he would have the upper hand, that he was using Arcon... It was a laughable notion. Arcon wove again, illuminating his spot with a globe of light. "Alright Alliveer, let us begin your lessons. I have a very simple task set out for you. Make it to your rooms, and you will be done. If you can do this, then you will proved yourself in my eyes and the Great Lord's." It was a subtle thing, using both of their names in the same sentence. Though Arcon had no illusions of approaching his lord's grandeur and power, he did want the association there. He wanted to be seen as a path to power, a power born of the Great Lord, at least to this man. He had simple, naked ambition, and Arcon would twist it. It was what he did. What he was born to do... "Alright Alliveer, get walking..." With that he let the globe fall, breathing hard, silent breaths. He had already channeled a great deal today, to set all this up. He was never the strongest in the power, and this lesson would have tested his limits as well as his students. Which of course, is why he had Shadar to help him... He knew his assigned task. These thoughts bringing forth that ghastly grin, invisible due to the darkness he surrounded himself in, Arcon Dadread settled down to wait. A spider, comfortable in his web...
  16. Sereth stood near the back of the bunch, checking out the men who chose to stand there. As Arath spoke he felt a personal spark of guilt, and more than a touch of memory of Shienar. Lightning...thicker than a man, slaughtering whole squads. He shuddered at the thought, and acknowledged Arath's point whole heartily, even if he did have a couple suggestions for the man. He was broken out of his thoughts by the grumbling around him. To his surprise it was full Asha'man who grumbled the loudest. Sereth was at Shienar, he was convinced he knew the face of every man who went with him. None of those men were present. "You are all fools who don't realize the weakness we had. We weren't beaten, we were slaughtered. The moment we did the most damage was that last minute, before Covai pulled us back, and we channeled ourselves nearly to death. That is not how it should be. We are a military organization, yet we act as if we are all trained assassins, arrogant, invulnerable assassins." A few of the men looked surprised at his cold tone, knowing or at least having heard of the Asha'man who would rather read a book than grapple with Saidin. Those men knew how friendly and open Sereth was, and how wise. Others looked at him with rage, others embarrassed. None rose against them, he was the only one present to have participated in a battle... It gave him some kind of seniority, or at the very least a hardness that people didn't like to challenge. One particular person stood out to the Asha'man, a man he didn't reconize. This was surprising, Sereth could often be found training or hanging out at the traveling grounds. Sereth had a good education, that much he flaunted, but a much more seldom talent was his emerging ability to read people as readily as words on a page. He wasn't the innocent student he was when he first came to the farm... Something he had mixed feelings about. All of that was a discussion for a later time, between him and his journals. This man was a cause of concern at this moment. He knew the type, one who despised those who readily stepped in line, those who played the game. Sereth had personally always had mixed feelings about them, at once admiring their desire for freedom and originality, while laughing at their attempts to be 'edgy' and stand out. He'd have to talk to this one who stood at the edge of the grounds... Get a true measure of him. After all, it wouldn't be the first time that he'd been wrong. Just one of them.
  17. Adamin had learned his lesson early on. He wasn't going to flirt with the Mistress of Trainees any longer, but he knew he couldn't stop himself from tossing out a couple of jokes every now and then. The physical conditioning would do them both good anyways. "A few licks wouldn't be too bad, I'm sure the rugged look would help find someone to kiss them all better." He laughed openly at the look his sister gave him. It was a familiar one by now. Immediately he found himself sprawled out, mirroring his sister’s look at the honey cakes... They had been so good. Still, he supposed he'd have to apologize to the man... That was until he started flinging insults at the pair. Adamin put on his sly grin, but in truth, he was being thrown into a slowly boiling rage. Insult him all day, he could banter with the best of them, but never insult Del. Especially not with this one's attitude... "My sister is right, no one needs to be hurt." He stressed the word slightly, showing with very little doubt that he was open to the idea. "But it appears that you are either some sort of thief, or maybe a pirate with your sea legs, or our new room mate. Personally, I'm hoping for the first, however unlikely." His nimble hands were held in what appeared to be a relaxed position, but he was ready to be attacked. "But in the unfortunate case that it is the latter, why don't we introduce ourselves? My name is Adamin, and this is my loving sister Adela." Ada added a bit of malice to his grin, "Now tell me my fine pirate friend, do you have a name?" He'd owe his sister big time for this, but quite frankly he didn't like the man's tone... Not for his sister at least.
  18. Adamin struggled with rising out of his bed, mumbling something derogatory in response to his sister’s comment. It would forever remain a mystery exactly what it was. Still, once awake he managed to get through his morning fairly well, despite his sister's bickering that he was slowing her down. Of course he was moving slower; there were women in the hall and a man wasn't to appear to be rushed in front of such company! The thought brought a rueful smile to his lips, which was hidden by a simply extraordinary honey cake. Del tried to hide it, but he knew his sister, they knew each other better than either would admit. He noticed the changes, the slight hesitation, the bit of a lingering stare. True, to the outside observer these might very well appear to be her typical attitude; that being putting men as far from herself as possible. Ada knew better, he just kept the knowledge from her. It'd make for great teasing when ever she brought up some past incident. The male twin arrived at the assigned meeting place, with a grin on his lips. He never tried flirting with Thera, he knew better, and actually respected the woman. She was far more than any woman he had ever met, with the possible exception of his sister. Still, that didn't mean he couldn't joke. "Sorry Mistress Thera, it takes a moment to look this good." He chuckled slightly, expecting fully to pay for that comment later. As ordered, he emptied his pack and saddle bag. He had spent a year on the road, often without money and being forced to live on the land. Something that he had been taught to do. As such, he unloaded several strings for traps, a small packet of wax paper that contained extra bow strings, parcels of dried meat, and cold weather clothing. He packed light, knowing full well that energy was a prime comity in the wild, and carrying to much was a good way to waste it. His saddle bags were a bit more heavily packed, carrying more clothing and dried food, as well as some waxed rope and various hooks. He'd picked most of it up along the way to Tar Valon, but used a bit of his first bit of coin to obtain more gear. Ada was a flirt, and often appeared to be a fool, but he was far from ignorant. He waited expectantly for his sister to unpack, smiling at the look of surprise in his eyes. He'd packed the night before after she had fallen asleep. True, it was a couple hours that he could have spent resting... but this look was worth the time.
  19. Sereth shrugged, "Perhaps. Though I doubt anything less than the combined efforts of Saidin and Saidar would do the trick. It was always said that the greatest things done with the power required union of the sexes." The thought brought a lance of pain. He desperately wished for such a union to occur... though neither tower seemed particularly keen on the idea, and without the dragon to tell them to, Brent himself would never allow it. "I've had theories on the nature of the taint. I'll spare you the questions that lead to the conclusion; you are not one of my students. The essentials of it are as follows. The world we live in, and everything that was supposed to be in it, was made by the Creator. It all meshes well together, interacting by certain laws, and so I believe I can safely call these original creations 'order'. The Dark One, opposite to the creator, could then be called chaos. You are older than I most certainly, and have fought the Lord of the Grave in many ways I'm sure. As such, you could attest that the things he spawns... simply don't obey the same rules that the rest of us follow." Sereth paused for a moment, it was a fairly basic concept and he was almost certain she had already thought of it this way. "This next part is where my actual idea comes into play... The taint is of the Dark One, his finger sliding over the currents of beautiful Saidin, and through covering the source, it enters us. I believe it to be upsetting the order of our bodies, and thus a purely physical thing. I believe this... well because the Dragon is sane, and if the taint affected our souls he would have started off taint touched. Here lies the issue though, The One Power, for all its gifts, is a thing of the purest order. You manipulate it in certain ways to get predictable results, and I can think of no way to make it interact with the chaos of the taint once its inside of us," after a moment of staring at his companion, "Er, sorry, my fellow Asha'man." He waited for a moment, letting all thoughts settle. "Here, I must bow to your superior experience and knowledge of both the source and the human body. Is there a way, you think, to reestablish order within us?" Still his tone lacked hope. Though he felt a slight tremor of it... just maybe a yellow could help them. Maybe the Asha'man could be more than disposable weapons of the dragon...
  20. OOC: Sweet! I've been updated to an attack leader! (name is sereth, not arath) IC: Sereth watched most of the dealings impassively, the constant goose bumps on his arms reminding him of the danger this woman possessed. Still, he put on his mask of calm, remembering fondly the lessons he had learned when he held naught by the rank of soldier. When finally she addressed him again, Sereth shook his head. "I knew Isha, a good man up till those last moments. I've heard rumors about him..." He broke off, not wanting to address what he'd heard. "That however, has little to do with now, does it?" He put on an easy smile, stretching his well muscled arms. He was trying to relax the tension in the room. If he was going to be her e for a while, it would have to. Though he could work in this environment... it was stifling. "Eqwina Sedai, I too have tried to study the taint, and its effects, but as you can imagine it is not an easy subject to approach at my tower." "From my examinations, thoughts, and," he cleared his throat, "Personal experiences with the taint I've thought up several theories as to what exactly the taint is, and how it affects our minds and bodies. I could relate them to you if you wish, but it might take some time." He had to hold back a grin, instead keeping his friendly smile on his lips. What Aes Sedai wanted to spend time with an Asha'man. "Though I must ask, do you really thinks it’s possible? I mean, I've thought of ways that might work, but I don't think of any of them will work... As long as Saidin is tainted, more madness will come..." He spoke of it all with a hint of the passion that was within him. Though for all of that, no hint of hope or depression showed in his speech or manner. Sereth had thought about it all a thousand times a thousand times, and even though he had his promising ideas, hope of doing something about it never entered into the picture... Sereth Arian knew he'd die by the Dark One's Hand, either by his taint or his minions. He couldn't think of a better way to die.
  21. Sereth felt rage well up inside of him. He saw Tai’Dashan’s desperation, quickly connecting it to the actions of this despicable storm leader. He was behind him, he could end it now. A simple weave, a fire ball, an air razor, anything would end it now. This man deserved it, a death he didn’t see coming, never knowing his killers face… No… Tai deserves the kill… Never had he seen the man in such a fury, pure, unbridled wrath. Sereth knew the feeling, he experienced it at Shienar, watching friends and fellow Asha’man slaughtered… He wouldn’t rob Tai of this kill. He couldn’t, it’d betray that last moment, before Covai pulled them out of the battle. That moment when the historian, the philosopher, the thinker, all of it was lost in one moment of pure bloodlust. No, he couldn’t take the kill from him, but he could help him make it. Sereth wove a club of air, blasting the man in the lower back. He followed with solid bands of air, wrapping the man up, crushing him under the force. It wasn’t a subtle weave, by the light; he could have woven the man to sleep. This however, was more satisfying; that last scream was something Tai would relish for the moment. Sereth knew enough about the mind to know it wouldn’t be enough to help… but a moment of fulfilled vengeance might be the last bit of joy his fellow Asha’man had for a while. He felt the recoil of his weaves being cut, but he rewove them, again and again, suffering each time he did so. “Take him Tai, he deserves it.” His voice was unusually low; the light tone he was almost famous for was stripped from his voice. Distantly, he thought how common that was becoming, feeling a pang of pain for his lost innocence and later, Tai’s, as he was about to make his first kill… That was the price they paid though, for the gift of Saidin.
  22. Sereth was walking into the barracks, keeping track of the reactions of the men who had just heard the news of the bonding. The soldiers were edgy, and Sereth was doing what he could to keep them all settled, cracking jokes to some, posing difficult riddles to others, one soldier even got a pat on the back as he looked about ready to break down. A moment later he felt a terrific amount of Saidin being channeled, and rushed out, shouting orders to remain calm. The Asha'man watched in horror as Brent launched a flame arrow, his heart falling into his chest as the barn fell upon the man who had led them at Shienar. For the first time since he had learned the Flame and the Void from his Teacher, Sereth Arian nearly had the void shatter on him. It was true that he didn't know Covai, had barely spoken to the man, but he admired him. He was a true leader, where Brent was only in title. He led men to their deaths, and felt each wound. Sereth felt the three soldiers behind him seize Saidin. Sereth turned, catching the half-formed weaves out of the corner of his eyes. The Asha'man began his own grapple with the Source, years of experience rendering the battle second nature. Three cutting weaves, followed by three shielding weaves as each soldier recoiled from the shock. Distantly the philosopher mused that was probably the first time they'd had a weave cut. "Brent will destroy you if you attack him." His voice was low, his anger obvious despite the void. Releasing the shields, Sereth advanced upon the main party. After a bit of searching, he saw Tai'Dashan, and tossed the man a nod. They were among the few who wore the dragon pin proudly upon their lapel. It was there job to keep the soldiers in line... and protect them if the need arose. This in mind, he turned and faced the battle, watching in controlled awe as the battle unfolded...
  23. Arcon wove, masking his own ability to channel. An inverted weave of folded light hid his favored student, and a hint of illusion gave the appearance that the man had disappeared into shadows that literally reached for him. He was proud of his work. He stepped out from behind his own wall of folded light, only a couple feet behind Alliveer. "Hello Alliveer." His was was low, cold. It was aimed to startle the almost certainly edgy initiate. "The Myrddraal was correct, Alliveer. There are paths in the shadow that you are yet blind too, dangers you are not aware of. Any one of these doors could have exploded, eliminating a valuable resource to the Great Lord of the Dark." Though his words were stern in the patriarch sense, his tone made it clear that he held no fatherly affection for Alliveer. No, he kept him what he was for now, a resource, not even fit for the human verb of lose 'to kill.' He would have to earn that right. He wove gusts of air, inverting them, blowing out the torches. He wove a strong shield, slamming it into place, yet strong enough to do so even if the man had seized Saidin, the male half of the power. "This exercise will teach you to be aware of your surroundings. It will teach you to be prepared for anything, at any time. But most of all, it will teach you how far you've come in your education." He drained any compliment from the last words by switching to an almost mocking tone. He made the darkness complete with an illusion weave, and wove a ward of silence, to mask his steps as he retreated into deeper, nautural shadow, before lifting both weaves. For now it was enough to watch Alliveer, test his reactions, Shad would know how to startle him when the time came...
  24. Sereth's eyes glittered with suspicion. She said she was of the yellow Ajah, the healing ajah, and by the oaths she couldn't tell a lie. Yet something rankled with him... Why couldn't she do something for him here? He'd been healed before; hell he had healed before, the power was almost instantaneous with regards to mending wounds... She can't heal him and still fulfill her purposes... He actually smiled in understanding. "Well, that all seems well enough for me, but I hadn't actually planned on staying here the night over. Our Tower has certain... gifts, that make such things as an inn irrelevant." As I could sleep in my own bed tonight... He left that unsaid, judging from her horse that she had not the weave for traveling. "As such, I'm open to your suggestions as to a good place to stay." He smiled a disarming smile for the Aes Sedai. He thought over her self-proclaimed title of most knowledgeable, and decided to run with it. After all, there really was only one reason this woman would want to keep him overnight. She wished to study the taint, and its effects on his mind. He thought of the journals he kept, dating back to the first time he had channeled. He chronicled his thoughts, going back over them every so often, checking for any changes in the patterns. They had changed over his years at the tower, but that seemed more the evolution of his brain, his growing maturity, than the effects of the taint on Saidin. Could be wrong? "Oh, don't worry. I know well enough to let an Aes Sedai of the Yellow do her work." It was the reds that he intended to interrupt. "And my name is Sereth Arian, Asha'man of the Black Tower, I'm sure we'll both profit from this chance encounter, Eqwina. We... share a similar interest in mental illness." He laughed, and walked down the street, giving her the chance to walk beside him. At least they'd have equal chance of destroying each other from this position. The book keeper followed of his own violation, knowing that he didn't have much of a choice. They found a pair of rooms at a reputable inn, neither feeling quite comfortable with the idea of sleeping near the other. The three retired immediately, and went to the Aes Sedai's room. He warded the room for silence, "We shouldn't be overheard." Sereth took a deep breath, and took a seat on the bed, and let Saidin go. It was a gamble, but he hoped it'd pay off. Afterall, she wouldn't know if he let go of the source, and Sereth very much believed she thought he'd hold it the entire time... And this way, he'd be fresher than his opponent if it came down to it. "Eqwina, if I may be blunt. Who do you desire to study first, I, or this book keeper."
  25. Sereth looked up at the mounted woman, smiling all the while. It was nice to see someone not be immediately cowed by his black coat, or, he supposed, the floating man beside him. Goosebumps on his arm told him why she was not afraid. He drew heavier on the source, if this got ugly, he wanted his hammer blow ready. Outwardly however, he nodded his head respectfully. He remembered his lessons with the Grey Sister though, and made sure the movement was that of an equal, not of an inferior. He wouldn't allow her to push him around. The Asha'man needed a strong presence, needed respect, especially from these Aes Sedai. He doubted they'd get it though, or at least, not so much as the young Asha'man held for the woman upon horseback. "Flaunting what I am? I assure you, though it must look like this it is something quite different." He paused, allowing her to put in the obvious question. "This man seems to be suffering from some disease. He was perfectly reasonable when we began talking, but severe mood swings rendered him about ready to attack me. He recognized my coat, even asked for healing." He left the rest unsaid, she was Aes Sedai, didn't need him to connect all the dots for her. Didn't need to tell her that no sane man would willingly attack a male channeler, not a trained one, and certainly not unarmed. "So, I restrained him. Though I could have easily overpowered him, holding him and transferring him to one of the famed Wise Woman of Ebou Dar would have been difficult, and I might have had to strike him to ease the burden..." He presented the idea calmly, but with a hint of distaste. He didn't want her to think him violent, but didn't want the idea out of her head. Though he would hate to have to resort to it. These woman had done to much for the world for him to take one out of it... "Though you are Aes Sedai, you could do much better than even the red belts could, unless I'm mistaken." He left out better than he could do. Not for the first time, he wished healing was one of his gifts. He released the gag on the book seller, and set him down gently, though immediately ready to seize him again. "Is this agreeable?" The man looked up to the mounted woman, and reluctantly nodded his head. Sereth was proud of himself, he had almost certainly secured some help for the poor man, if any was to be had. She couldn't rightly refuse to help him if she hoped to maintain the prestige of the Aes Sedai, not to mention the 'lesser of two evils' aspect that the crowd had pinned on them. He knew she'd recognize the ploy, he just hoped that it was seen for what it was. An honest attempt to help a man. Now he just needed to sate his curiosity. "And if it wouldn't be to much trouble, if you know what affliction the man has, I am quite curious about it." He offered her his trade-marked sideways smile, attempting to disarm the situation for the final bit. He was after all, asking for a favor...
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