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DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

Arath Faringal

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Everything posted by Arath Faringal

  1. Arath paused again, weighing his options before he responded. He definitely owed her something. This was the least he could do. "I'm Arath. And yes, I know the Queen's Blessing. I don't know about finding a job there, but I can show you the way." She looked pleased, and she released her grip on his arm. With one more glance up the alley, Arath pointed Michelle further down the street they were standing in. "That way." It didn't take long before they had made their way to the gates of the inner city. From there, it was only a short walk to the inn she was looking for. The Queen's Blessing was one of the better inns of the city. It had a veyr good reputation. There were rarely ever fights there, and it was usually filled with fine, upstanding citizens. Not a place Arath visited often. He had followed it's patrons a time or two, but he had never stepped inside. "Well, milady," Arath said with a sweep of his arm, "here we are. A fine upstanding inn if there ever was one." Looking around, Arath began to wonder what he would do for the night. He'd been counting on making a nice profit from the inn keeper, and was quite at a loss for what to do now. "So ... is there anything else I can do for you? I feel like I should thank you for what you did back there ... but I'm at a loss for what to do exactly."
  2. Arath watched with amusement as Michelle browsed the weapons. He supposed he shouldn't have been surprised when she started with the large two handed blade. How anyone could wield that was beyond him, and the image of Michelle trying to swing that thing around made him crack a smile. She seemed to realize the same thing after she tried to lift it, and quickly moved on down the line. As she ran her fingers over the metal, Arath repeatedly forced himself to not look at her specifically. Even in her loose fitting clothing it was hard to avoid looking. Whatever she did to make him notice her, he was sure she did it on purpose. She seemed to enjoy making him jumpy. Focusing entirely on the task at hand, Arath walked to the end of the line and examined the blade he believed she would eventually choose. It was similar to the pair that he usually carried. A little thinner, perhaps a little shorter. Something she wouldn't have a problem using. When Michelle finally picked up the blade, Arath knew it would be a good match. She took a few experimental swipes through the air before looking to him for approval. "Looks good to me," he said with a grin. "Though it looks a little lighter than your usual weapon." That frying pan ordeal had certainly been something else. A memorable experience to say the least. Ignoring her scowl, Arath held his light globe high and lit the way back to the door. Moments later they were back in the sunlight, making their way toward the clearing in the woods to the west. They didn't talk much on the trip. Mostly she seemed to be enjoying the sunlight. Michelle had been a little reclusive since her last little bout with Tai'Dashan, spending most of her time in the kitchen or in her room. Arath wasn't quite sure what he'd done wrong, nor was he sure how to fix it. Hopefully this would be a step toward that end. As they reached the clearing, Arath did a little preperation. Siezing Saidin, he wove large cables of fire, melting away the snow and drying out the ground beneath them. Sword work was hard enough to learn without slipping around in the mud. Setting Michelle's basket on a large stone that Tai must have raised from the ground at some point, Arath set aside his practice swords and turned to his student. "Well then, shall we get started?"
  3. Arath watched carefully from the corner of the inn, waiting for the right moment. The innkeeper here was a fat fool, but he did a good bit of business. And he kept all of his earnings in a purse almost as fat as he was right on his belt. Easy pickings, if he did things right. It was mostly a waiting game. This inn attracted a lot of different kinds of people. Merchants guards, city watch, lesser nobles ... some of which were a little too observant for his tastes. On the other hand, they paid well for their drinks, making this place an excellent target. If a little bit hard to manage. If he could pull it off, he would be set for quite a while though. Maybe be able to find a way out of his current predicament. The opportunity arose after a good hour of waiting. The number of patrons had dropped off a little, and the innkeeper was engaged in an animated conversation with a friend of his. Another innkeeper judging by his girth. But he was busy trading rumors, which meant his attention was focused entirely away from his purse. Perfect. Moving as normally as possible, Arath set down the mug he'd been tending for so long and made his way toward the door. The casual observer would notice that the innkeeper just happened to be standing along the best path to the door. Purely coincidental. What happened next was not quite according to the young thief's plan. By some unfortunate twist of luck, just as Arath made his pass at the dangling purse, the innkeepers friend kicked his foot out in wild embelishment of his current rumor. The foot caught Arath behind the knee, causing him to fall hard, with his fingers tangled in the purse strings. The innkeeper squawked in surprise as he felt the tug on his belt, and surprise quickly turned to anger when he saw the dirty young man on the floor, struggling to extricate himself from his purse. "Thief!" he roared, bending down with surprising speed to lift Arath from the ground. "No!" Arath lied, frantically looking for a way out of this. "I just fell! Your friend tripped me and I just fell into you!" "Tell it to the city watch!" the fat man sneered, hauling the youth to the door. That was the last thing Arath ever intended to do, and so he struggled. The innkeeper had a surprisingly strong grip, but as could be expected was not a very agile man. Arath managed to worm around in his grip, finally hitting him behind the knee with a well placed kick. The man squawked again, tumbling down the front step and loosing his grip. Arath twisted free ... only to see a handful of guards rounding the corner, eyes locking onto him. Blood and ashes ... Arath wasn't quite sure what happened next. As the guards roughly siezed him, he noticed a young woman kneeling down next to the innkeeper. Whatever she said seemed to surprise and confuse the old man. The next thing he knew, the innkeeper was waving off the guards, saying it was all a mistake. Within moments of his arrest, he was free once again, and entirely unsure of why that was so. Before he could pull his wits together, the young woman had snagged him by the arm and was dragging him down an alley. Arath briefly considered breaking away from her and running, but considering that she'd just rescued him from certain imprisonment he decided to indulge her. The girl dropped her hood and turned to face him. She was pretty ... but what did she want with him? “So, what happened back there? We both know that was no missunderstanding...” Arath did his best to look innocent. A pretty good job actually ... not that she looked fooled in the slightest. With a shrug, he simply said, "Lets just say ... the fat man is faster than he looks. And has the Dark One's own bloody luck." Glancing uneasily back the way they came, he added, "I don't want to seem ungrateful for your help back there, but I really don't know what I can offer you in return. You don't really seem the sort that would associate with ... folks like me. And if it's all the same to you, I'd rather not wait around here until he decides that maybe he wasn't so mistaken after all."
  4. As Michelle packed her picnic basket, of all things, Arath pondered for a moment on exactly how he was going to go about this lesson. Michelle was not a very large person, and for all the power she could pack behind her full arm slaps, she probably wasn't strong enough to heft a longer blade for long. Once she had finished and happily announced her readiness, Arath gave a nod and a smile, then led the way out of the house. It was a fairly bright day, the first in a quite a while actually. And warm enough that some of the snow was melting off. What snow hadn't been burned or blasted away already. The soldiers did a pretty good job of getting rid of the stuff from the streets, but they largely ignored anything off the beaten path. It was now melting and turning the paths into a slushy mud. "We'll have one stop to make first. I have an idea of how I want to do this, but first we need to select a blade that you're comfortable with. So we'll swing by the forge and find something for you. I set aside a handful of swords that I thought might work." It wasn't long before they reached the forge which Arath worked on occasion. The dark room was still, nobody coming to work the anvils so early in the day. Weaving a globe of light above his hand, Arath led Michelle across the cluttered room to the full weapons rack. "Here you go. Go ahead and find something that feels comfortable. Make sure it's a comfortable weight too ... you'll be swinging it around for a couple of hours and we don't want you getting tired too quickly."
  5. Not for the first time, Arath questioned the wisdom of going through with this. He had promised that he would teach her how to use a sword, but at the time he hadn't imagined that Michelle would actually hold him to it. Or that she would get along so poorly with Tai'Dashan. Teaching her how to use a weapon was seeming less and less like a good idea. But he'd promised. Light willing he wouldn't regret it. And so he stood at the bottom of the stairs in his home, a pair of practice swords in his hands, waiting for Michelle to come down. They would be going to the clearing in the woods that Tai had created for this. Going to the training grounds to teach a civilian was just asking for trouble. Too many distractions that way. At long last, the latest resident of Faringal manor made her way down the stairs. "Ready to go?" Arath asked with a smile. "It's going to be a long day."
  6. Arath watched curiously as the Dedicated lied with through his teeth. Odd ... He would have expected a Cairhienen to be far better at it. He didn't feel anything at all? Why had he been staring so intently at the thing for so long then? Imagining it's many uses as a paper weight? "Hmmm ... that might be just as well. You could be down here for quite some time sorting through this mess, and if you don't feel any impressions about anything you find you'll be less likely to experiment in some fool way." Arath casually let the threat dangle for a moment before continuing. "Even if you're right about something you can be wrong. An Asha'man was here a few months ago, searching in the first chamber. He found a rod that he was sure would shoot fire out the end if he channeled into it. He was right. Too bad he was holding the wrong end." Despite himself, Arath grimaced at that particular memory. It had not been a pretty sight. Bouncing the ter'angreal in his palm, Arath looked around the rest of the room. Some of those piles reached nearly to the vaulted cieling. And there were several more chambers just like this one. Larger in fact. This could be the job of months, especially for men accustomed to doing everything with the Power. "Well, I'd best leave you to it. I'll be in the Asha'man quarters sorting through another box. Let me know if you need anything, or if you find anything that looks important."
  7. It's confirmed by the very nature of the struggle. If the Dark One is already entirely free, he's already won. There's no stuffing his finger back through the bore and fixing it. Unless you believe that Rand will create an entirely new Pattern to contain the free Dark One. And last I checked, Rand is no creator.
  8. Probably just CC it. Unless we actually need her approval for Whitecloaks to kill an Aes Sedai?
  9. Here's the modified version. Character Name: Jahier Shiwon Nation of Origin: Arafel Physical Characteristics: Eye Color: Blue Hair Color: Dirty Blonde Height: 6’ 0” Weight: 265 lbs. Build: Muscular Skin: Fair though weathered Physical Description: Arafellin braids with bells. Scar down right side of face. Has a tattoo of a howling wolf on his right forearm, for luck. Personal History: Jahier was the youngest of three brothers. His father was a soldier and his mother an artist. They lived in Shol Arbela, The City of Ten Thousand Bells. His father died in an attack on one of the outlying villages near the blight when Jahier was only seven years old. His mother did not have to raise her sons alone. She had help from his father’s brothers in raising Jahier and his brothers. Jahier’s uncles taught him and his brothers everything they needed to know to be men. His uncles instilled a strict code into Jahier and his brothers: persevere in spite of danger and stand up for what is right. After five years of training under his uncles, he was excelling in: woods craft, hand-to-hand combat, and swordsmanship. During Jahier’s time training with his uncles, something happened to him that he had never thought of before; he fell in love with a girl named Lanai. Lanai was the only daughter of one of the most renowned officials in Arafel. They met at one of his mother’s art exhibits and quickly fell for one another. Around Lanai’s thirtienth naming day she came to Jahier’s house with wonderful news, she was going to the White Tower to become an Aes Sedai. Jahier was very supportive of her decision and did not make leaving any harder than it needed to be. Jahier decided that he would follow Lanai to the White Tower to study to become a warder. Warder training was very demanding, but he knew that if he got through it he would be a warder worthy to be with Lanai. His already large physique expanded into a quite imposing figure. Whenever he thought about dropping out he remember what his uncles told him, to persevere no matter what. The weapons training they had given him was being pushed to its limit. As the intensity of their training increased Jahier and Lanai began losing touch with each other. As the years passed they saw less and less of each other. Finally, after Jahier’s twenty-sixth naming day, Lanai had completed her training; she was now a full Aes Sedai. As soon as he heard Lanai had passed her test, Jahier ran to the Tower to find her. As Jahier searched for Lanai he experienced a moment of doubt. The instant he saw her, he knew she was still the same wonderful woman he fell in love with. They talked for hours just telling each other about their lives. Then came one of the happiest moments in Jahier’s life, Lanai asked him to be her warder. After a year of happiness, Jahier asked Lanai to marry him. When she said yes, it seemed to him that nothing could ever go wrong. Time would soon tell, as it often does, that he was wrong. Shortly before they were to start their return to Shol Arbela for the wedding, Jahier and Lanai stopped in a village for the night to replenish their supplies and rest. Little did they know that a wandering patrol of the Children of the Light in the area had spotted Lanai and recognized her for an Aes Sedai. When Jahier and Lanai started for the store to purchase the supplies, the patrol ambushed them from the darkness and Lanai was killed in a hail of arrows. In that moment of seeing Lanai shot, he exploded his rage and fury on the Children. As the ashes of the Children were still smoldering, he bent down beside Lanai and wept. An Asha’man recruiting party in the area felt this use of Saidin and decided to investigate. They found Jahier wailing from loss and told him about the Black Tower. Jahier screamed for them to leave them alone and started to attack the recruiters. The Asha’man, far more skilled in Saidin, wrapped him up in a flow of Air and told him that the Black Tower could offer him true vengeance. Jahier leapt at the chance and told the recruiters that he would accept their offer after he laid Lanai to rest in his family’s burial ground. When he returned to Shol Arbela, he told his mother and Lanai’s father what had transpired. Jahier’s mother told him to stay, but he refused. The only thing on Jahier mind was the promise of vengeance; he was off to the Black Tower. *Bio Checker Note* Due to the ... fragile ... mental state this character is likely to be in, he is required to have a significant channeling block to protect him from Saidin. The chosen block is that he cannot channel unless a nearby woman is in danger.
  10. Arath took the artifact that Baran offered him and turned it over in his hand. It was definitely a ter'angreal. He could tell simply by touching it. What it did ... now that was a bigger challenge. The challenge common to almost every ter'angreal they had found. It made him think of ... a line? A tunnel? "I have no idea," he confessed. "I get a feeling of lines. Long lines. Distances maybe? It's hard to say. I know it is a ter'angreal, but other than that ..." Arath traced the spiral pattern on the disk with his thumb. "I wish there was a way to figure these things out, other than trial and error. It's mostly taking whatever vague impressions you get and slowly expanding them. Some people are better at feeling out ter'angreal than others. I'm better at it than most, but that's not really saying much. If I can figure it out, I can try to recreate it, but it's a slow, painful process. More frustrating than fruitful." Bouncing the ter'angreal in his palm for a moment, Arath handed it back to Baran. "So tell me, what do you think of it? There must be some reason why you picked out it from all of ... this."
  11. Digging through yet another pile of curious objects that the Asha'man had brought up from the Great Holding, Arath struggled to contain his disappointment. It was said by some that the amount of objects of the Power held in the Stone rivaled that held in the White Tower itself. What nobody ever mentioned was the sheer amount of utterly useless trash that was also in the Stone. For each true ter'angreal they found, they had to sift through a dozen rotten pieces of junk. It seemed to Arath that the Tairen paranoia about the One Power had led them to throw absolutely anything that looked even slightly out of the ordinary into this dungeon. Most of it was trash, rotten and no longer useable. Other things were still servicable, but not related to the Power. Some of the soldiers had not yet been able to distinguish between mundane artifacts, and the ter'angreal they were looking for. For the most part they were soldiers who had only just begun training, who still had problems even grasping Saidin. This was a safety measure. They were less likely to channel around these things because they hadn't become accustomed to doing everything with the power yet. One fool dedicated had tried to sift through an entire pile of refuse with flows of air a couple of weeks earlier. He'd regained consciousness that morning, and had no memory of the last few months. Needless to say, the others were being more careful now. There were still incidents every day, but thankfully nothing large. As Arath finished looking through the box of items, all bloody mundane objects, he turned and made his way back to the holding. Maybe enough had been sorted for him to examine another box? As he pushed open the door leading into the latest room they had been clearing out, he was met by the sight of one of the Dedicated, staring down at something in his hand. He wasn't moving. He didn't seem to be doing anything at all except stare at the object he held. Resisting the instinctive urge to sieze the source, Arath carefully made his way forward, brushing aside fallen junk from the path. The dedicated, Baran, stirred at the noise he made, which made the Storm Leader relax a little. But only a little. What was he up to? "Find something interesting Dedicated?"
  12. DM Handle: Leala Gymorraine Contact Info: redsong4@gmail.com Character Count: 0 Character Name: Tomoyuki (Tomo) Sarenda Nationality: Arafellin and Cairhienin Age: 19 Physical Characteristic: Tomo’s eyes are a deep brown, nearly black. They are rather narrow and are always alert to his surroundings. His hair is short and black, with a tendency to feather and spike on its own around his scalp. Two very thin braids trail from the nape of his neck and over his shoulders in the Arafellin style, but still with his own twist. He inherited his mother’s Cairhienin height and is rather short for a male, at only 5’6” tall. Tomo’s wiry body does not weigh much at around 140 lb. Physical Description: Tomo, while having blood of both Arafel and Cairhien, the traits of his mother’s homeland, Cairhien are more noticeable than his Arafellin features. He is rather short with pale skin and deep brown eyes that are narrower than those of Arafellin heritage. Perhaps the only thing that indicates his Borderland heritage is the pair of braids slithering from the back of his neck to his rib cage. Rather than using all the hair on his head, though, he uses the long hair from the bottom layers to braid. This is because when the rest of his hair is braided, it looks messy and not at all like he wants. He constantly wears brown leather armbands that his father gave to him for hunting excursions. Personal History: In a rather ironic weave of the Wheel, Tomoyuki’s parents met in Tar Valon. His mother was the daughter of a Cairhienin seamstress and his father was an aspiring Warder. Before his father had a chance to enter the White Tower to pursue his ambitions, however, he had a rather nasty tear in his cloak. Wanting to make a better impression, he stopped by a seamstress’s shop. He was quite taken with the young apprentice, and she with he. Deciding against his future as a Warder, Tomo’s father married the young woman after a short courtship and the pair moved to a small town in Cairhien. Tomoyuki was born two years later. As the boy grew, it became apparent that he was rather sharp witted and was constantly alert to something to comment on. His father took this alertness and applied it to hunting. Tomo did not see much use in hunting, as his father was better than he and he certainly wasn’t interested in being a tailor. However, the life of a scholar wasn’t what he wanted, either. His mind was constantly going at an alarming rate and he incessantly said what was on his mind, becoming somewhat of a cynic. On a few occasions, he would accompany his father on hunting excursions and tried his hardest to exhibit control. However, he was always too flighty to wield a bow or a lance to kill anything, so he ended up helping his father skin and clean the animals. His ability to channel the One Power became known to him in the dead of winter, not even a year ago. He and his father were hunting in the woods around the village where they lived, and Tomo was determined to prove useful this time and insisted that they split up. His father agreed rather happily and they split ways. Tomo wandered farther and farther into the forest, looking for any sign of movement, concentrating on his surroundings and blocking out everything else. He was so concentrated on the forest that he ignored the sky and before he knew it, the sun had disappeared and he could no longer see five feet in front of him. Frustrated and realizing that he was tired, the young man drew his coat around him and decided to try to wait out the night. Squatting on the ground, he shivered himself to sleep. He woke up close to dawn, finding ice matted to his braids, his cheeks, and his nose. Drawing his cloak tighter and tighter, he concentrated on warmth. The harder he concentrated, the more the snow around him melted away and the more heat he felt around him. After a while of this, his mind suddenly felt what seemed like waves of chaotic feelings. His head filled with rushes of ice and fire, streams of lightning assaulted his thoughts. The edges of his cloak burned as he tried as hard as he could to let go of this feeling. When he finally did, he found that he had risen to his knees, his hands had grasped his head, and he had been screaming a wordless scream. He fell to his hands and passed out with exhaustion. At least he was warm. When he awoke, he was back home. His father had gathered a search group and had found him in the middle of a circle of damp ground. His mother and a few of the other women had fed him warm food and given him fresh clothes and a warm bed. That night, he thought about what it might have been that had caused that feeling in his head and the melting of the snow. The only thing he could think of was the unthinkable, that he was a channeler. The next morning, he did what he felt was necessary. When his father went hunting once more and his mother went to meet with a client, he left, not wanting his family to suffer on his behalf.
  13. Yeah, I noticed that, but liberties were made to accomodate age in the later part of the bio. There had to be an adequate amount of time for her to actually finish Aes Sedai training, but they also had to be within the acceptable sparking age for him as well. Kind of ended up being at the extreme end for both.
  14. Testing seems a little odd. If she was a wilder the sister would automatically know, otherwise there would be no reason to suspect that she had 'certain talents'. Not a big deal though. Consider it CC'd. *BT Stamp*
  15. DM Handle: Arafellin Wolfbrother Contact Information: jorgenson75{at}yahoo{dot}com Character Count: 1st Character Name: Jahier Shiwon Nation of Origin: Arafel Physical Characteristics: Eye Color: Blue Hair Color: Dirty Blonde Height: 6’ 0” Weight: 265 lbs. Build: Muscular Skin: Fair though weathered Physical Description: Arafellin braids with bells. Scar down right side of face. Has a tattoo of a howling wolf on his right forearm, for luck. Personal History: Jahier was the youngest of three brothers. His father was a soldier and his mother an artist. They lived in Shol Arbela, The City of Ten Thousand Bells. His father died in an attack on one of the outlying villages near the blight when Jahier was only seven years old. His mother did not have to raise her sons alone. She had help from his father’s brothers in raising Jahier and his brothers. Jahier’s uncles taught him and his brothers everything they needed to know to be men. His uncles instilled a strict code into Jahier and his brothers: persevere in spite of danger and stand up for what is right. After five years of training under his uncles, he was excelling in: woods craft, hand-to-hand combat, and swordsmanship. During Jahier’s time training with his uncles, something happened to him that he had never thought of before; he fell in love with a girl named Lanai. Lanai was the only daughter of one of the most renowned officials in Arafel. They met at one of his mother’s art exhibits and quickly fell for one another. Around Lanai’s twelfth naming day she came to Jahier’s house with wonderful news, she was going to the White Tower to become an Aes Sedai. Jahier was very supportive of her decision and did not make leaving any harder than it needed to be. Jahier decided that he would follow Lanai to the White Tower to study to become a warder. Warder training was very demanding, but he knew that if he got through it he would be a warder worthy to be with Lanai. His already large physique expanded into a quite imposing figure. Whenever he thought about dropping out he remember what his uncles told him, to persevere no matter what. The weapons training they had given him was being pushed to its limit. As the intensity of their training increased Jahier and Lanai began losing touch with each other. As the years passed they saw less and less of each other. Finally, after Jahier’s twenty-sixth naming day, Lanai had completed her training; she was now a full Aes Sedai. As soon as he heard Lanai had passed her test, Jahier ran to the Tower to find her. As Jahier searched for Lanai he experienced a moment of doubt. The instant he saw her, he knew she was still the same wonderful woman he fell in love with. They talked for hours just telling each other about their lives. Then came one of the happiest moments in Jahier’s life, Lanai asked him to be her warder. After two years of happiness, Jahier asked Lanai to marry him. When she said yes, it seemed to him that nothing could ever go wrong. Time would soon tell, as it often does, that he was wrong. Shortly before they were to start their return to Shol Arbela for the wedding, Jahier and Lanai stopped in a village for the night to replenish their supplies and rest. Little did they know that a wandering patrol of the Children of the Light in the area had spotted Lanai and recognized her for an Aes Sedai. When Jahier and Lanai started for the store to purchase the supplies, the patrol ambushed them from the darkness and Lanai was killed in a hail of arrows. In that moment of seeing Lanai shot, he exploded his rage and fury on the Children. As the ashes of the Children were still smoldering, he bent down beside Lanai and wept. An Asha’man recruiting party in the area felt this use of Saidin and decided to investigate. They found Jahier wailing from loss and told him about the Black Tower. Jahier screamed for them to leave them alone and started to attack the recruiters. The Asha’man, far more skilled in Saidin, wrapped him up in a flow of Air and told him that the Black Tower could offer him true vengeance. Jahier leapt at the chance and told the recruiters that he would accept their offer after he laid Lanai to rest in his family’s burial ground. When he returned to Shol Arbela, he told his mother and Lanai’s father what had transpired. Jahier’s mother told him to stay, but he refused. The only thing on Jahier mind was the promise of vengeance; he was off to the Black Tower. *Bio Checker Note* Due to the ... fragile ... mental state this character is likely to be in, he is required to have a significant channeling block to protect him from Saidin. The chosen block is that he cannot channel unless a nearby woman is in danger.
  16. It took a bit longer than he would have expected, probably close to an hour, but eventually all of Arath's students had overcome their shields. As each one filled with Saidin, Arath gave an approving nod, noting those who had completed their task the fastest. They would be paired up according to that speed for their next task. When the final, disgruntled looking Dedicated managed to slip through the knots of the shield and sieze Saidin, Arath barked the command, "Release!" Each of the Dedicated dropped his link with the Power. Some a little faster than others, but all obeyed the command. Siezing Saidin himself, Arath started down the line again, reshielding each of the students. Some of them looked outraged, others confused. More than a few wouldn't like this next part. "These knots on these shields are less complicated than the last ones, so you should all be able to break through them more quickly. Being able to channel will be in your best interest for this next part. Most of the time, if you find yourself shielded, you will not be able to sit down and concentrate entirely on breaking the shield. You will have other distractions. Probably fighting for your life. So you are going to provide each other with distractions." Walking down the line, the Storm Leader paired up the dedicated according to their speed in breaking the shields. Once all were paired up, Arath continued his instruction. "This is your chance to apply everything you have learned today. You will spar with your partner. You will apply what your peers and I have said to your duels. And you will be trying your bloody best to break through that shield. Once a shield is gone, I don't expect the duel to last much longer. And do try not to injure your partner or yourself too badly." The last was delivered with a pointed look at Baran and Gavin, who had managed to be paired up together. Light willing they would at least heed that part.
  17. Rochel had been somewhat of an oddity as an Accepted, and still found herself that way as an Aes Sedai. After all the ceremony and whatnot that had followed her raising, the young Domani rarely, if ever, wore her shawl. Most young sisters clung to their shawl like a lifeline, at least until the ageless look set in. Rochel had abandoned it at the first convenient moment, bringing it out only when required to. Today was no exception. As she walked through the halls of the Tower, blissfully shawless, she contemplated the assignment in front of her. This would be the first time she would be out of the Tower, out of Tar Valon, in years. As she had correctly suspected, the real training hadn't begun until she had sworn the oaths, and her time had been consumed by lessons. And teaching. The Mistress of Novices had seen it fitting retribution to saddle her with difficult novices. But that was at an end for a while. She was being set free to hunt for new candidates to become novices. A chance to get out into the world and do something. She wondered how much the world had changed. Half of her life had been spent behind the gilded bars of the cage that was the White Tower. Little to nothing of the world entered these walls. Little news filtered down to the initiates, and she had found that it was still dificult to find out anything without your own contacts throughout the world. What better time to start then now? She soon found herself at the Tower stables, where she had been told a horse would be waiting for her. She was greeted by the sight of Esther Tremaine being winked at by a stablehand. That was certinaly interesting. Esther had been raised around the same time as Rochel, and appeared to be having the same sorts of problems. It must be a common thing. "Making friends Esther?" she asked with a grin. "I didn't think he was your type."
  18. OOC: Aww crap ... forgot about this ... sorry ladies. Although he had some limited practice with circles before now, Arath was still not sure what to think of the sensation. The strange emotional link that the circle provided was unnerving enough, but the feel of Saidin rushing through him without the need to fight it to his will ... that was just beyond strange. The first few times he had done this he had managed to rip control of the circle from his partner in his panic to control Saidin. That had not gone over well. Zarinen had been less than happy. The demonstrations proceeded quickly. Each Aes Sedai entered the link and took control of the circle briefly. Some of them simply held the flows for a moment, studying the feeling, but most made an attempt to weave Saidin. Almost all of them grimaced in disgust at the taint, several of them looking close to losing their breakfast. Once the last of them had had a chance to lead the circle, late arrivals included, the final sister passed the link back into Arath's control. Slightly relieved to be fighting Saidin again, the young Storm Leader turned to the cluster of Aes Sedai and continued with his lesson. "As you can see, there are a few differences between how Saidin and Saidar are handled. There are very few weaves that are formed the same way for either power, and even those have subtle differences. Being in a circle is the only time to learn how to do things the other way. So long as I am linked with any of you, I can see your flows of Saidar, and you my flows of Saidin. I still cannot see what anyone else is doing with it, but it gives me the chance to become familiar with your weaves. Very important when it comes to countering them. I've had to combat Saidar a few times in the past, and the little I've learned in the last few days would have been invaluable to me back then. Hopefully you will find the same benefit from these exercises." "I do want to stress how important it is that you don't try to weave Saidin in the same way you weave Saidar. The best example of this is with Travelling." Motioning to his side, Arath began to slowly form the weave for a gateway, using only Saidin. As the weave gradually took shape, Arath explained what he was doing. "To travel with Saidin requires the channeler to fold two pieces of the pattern together, and bore a hole from one to the other. I honestly don't know what might happen if I were to attempt the same with Saidar, and I really don't care to find out." Several horrified faces among the Aes Sedai were clearly in agreement. Finishing the weave, Arath waited for the rotating portal to fully open before he continued. "This is the largest gateway I can manage by my own strength." It was a respectable sized gateway, large enough for a medium sized cart to pass through, if the driver was careful. "I haven't yet mastered your version of Travelling, but like I said before, it is much easier to simply reinforce my own weaves with Saidar. This is what I can do with both powers." Letting his first gateway snap shut, Arath prepared another, much larger weave with Saidin. The weave should have collapesed into a useless mess, but Arath fed Saidar into his original flows, strengthening them and making them appear more solid. When the weave finished, the familiar slash of light appeared and rotated into an enormous gateway, by far the largest Arath had ever seen. A hundred paces wide, and tall enough for a man to ride through with a lance held high. One the other side was a massive expanse of open grasslands, somewhere to the west of Tar Valon. Letting the giant gateway snap shut again, Arath let the circle dissolve and released the source. "There are a lot of things we still don't know. An entire Age worth of knowledge left to rediscover. But light willing, we will be able to figure out enough, quickly enough to make a difference. Now then, does anyone have any questions?"
  19. Arath knew he would need to treat this last fight a little differently. With the previous two, there hadn't been any real risk of injury, unless the over zealous Baran had somehow managed to bludgeon him into unconsciousness. With Gavin and his knives though ... Arath needed to be extremely careful, but he needed to end it quickly. When the battle began, Arath wasted no time. After Gavin's initial attack he pressed his own assault. Or tried to anyway. The battle was surprisingly difficult. Gavin was fast and nimble, and he carried a surprising number of knives on him. When he wasn't tumbling out of the way of an attack, he was thowing a knife to buy himself some time. In under a minute, Arath had had to dodge or deflect at least ten of the missiles. He'd landed one good hit that had struck a little harder than intended on the other man's ribs, but the Dedicated was still tumbling about as though nothing had happened. Finally, the rain of blades ceased. It appeared that Gavin had thrown the last of them, though Arath remained wary. Especially after Lir's lesson, he didn't want to get caught unprepared and take a bad hit for it. Eventually an opportunity presented itself and the Storm Leader landed a powerful kick through Gavan's weak defenses. That should have been the end of it. The grimace on the former gleeman's face told Arath that he'd been injured, but the stubborn man rolled out of the kick and back up to his feet. Or his knees at least. He seemed to have twisted an ankle somewhere along the way. The fool seemed determined to fight to the bloody end. Shaking his head slightly, Arath decided to change the rules again. It led into the next part of his lesson anyway. Saidin filled him, and Arath reached out with threads of earth and water. The already muddy ground at Gaven's feet turned to mush, and he sank a foot into the liquified dirt. Before he had a chance to react, Arath replaced the water in the weave with fire, and the mud solidified as though it had been in the sun for weeks. Unprepared for what he surely considered cheating on the Storm Leader's part, he wasn't prepared when Arath charged up to him and knocked his odd weapon away. Trapped in the ground, and completely defenseless, the Dedicated had no choice but to give up. Softening the ground up again, Arath wove healing and placed the weave on the dedicated. He wished he could have been a little less brutal, but the boy's tactics had left him little other choice. As the third and final instructor uprooted himself, Arath turned once again to the rest of the class. "Use whatever tools you have at your disposal. We push you hard physically, making you faster and stronger. We push you with weapons, making you capable. Use your physical abilities and your martial abilities however you must to gain the advantage. But never forget that your most potent tool is Saidin. The One Power is what sets us apart from the armies of Kings. Our ability to destroy other's isn't limited to our prowess with a blade or a bow. "I used my best available tool in order to deal with an opponent who made himself hard to catch. I mostly did it to avoid further injury to him, but also to lead into the next part of the lesson. Our ability to channel gives us a completely unfair advantage over others. As I just demonstrated. Therefore, it is always in our best interest to make sure we are able to take that advantage. "Everyone close your eyes, and focus on Saidin." Arath watched as they all did as they were instructed. Several of them frowned as they came across the shields Arath had placed upon them earlier. "Like trying to reach through a glass wall, isn't it? You can see Saidin on the other side, just out of reach, but you can't touch it. Shields are one of the most dangerous weapons that can be used against us, but now I'll teach you how to defeat them." Pacing in front of the group, Arath began to explain the process of breaking through a shield. "For the most part, a shield feels like an unbroken sheet of glass placed between you and the source. As some of you may have discovered in your training, you may be able to force your way through a weak shield. If a much weaker channeler has you shielded, or a weak shield is tied off, you may be able to tear right through the weave and reach the source. For stronger shields though, another approach must be taken." Stopping at the center of the line of students, Arath began the fun part. "Now, feel along the shields. Like I said before, it probably seems like a smooth piece of glass between you and Saidin. However, there is a point on the shield which feels different. It is ... hard. A knob on the edge of the shield which isn't quite like the rest of it. That is the weak point. That is where the knot is tied on the weave. In order to defeat the shield, you must force your way into that knot. Reach through all the crevices and curves of it, until you find yourself to the other side. Then ... it is difficult to describe. You ... flex ... your ability to channel. You should be able to figure it out once you reach that point." "The knots in your shields are fairly simple, so I don't expect this to be too difficult for you. The process is a little painful, but I expect all of you to do it, and do it quickly. The last one to get out of the shield will be running laps of the training ground for an hour after we're done here." OOC: Almost done. Figure out how to bust of the shields, then there's one more activity for you.
  20. The second Dedicated, Lir, also spoke more or less how Arath had expected. Lir was well educated, and often seemed to refer to his favorite books regarding the great captains. Every other word out of his mouth seemed to be a quote from Artur Hawkwing or some such historical figure. This time was no exception. One Agelmar and a Hawkwing later, Arath squared off with his next opponent. As Lir came in with some heavy, wild swings, the Storm Leader thought about what had been said. Knowledge, subterfuge, and deception. Arath considered the dedicated's attack method and compared it with his previous fight. It was very different. Lir had fought carefully, with far more emphasis on defense, and calculated strikes when on offense, none of which were evident now. So this some sort of deception, trying to make himself seem more wild and aggressive. Arath noticed that he never pressed forward enough though, always ready to fall right back into habitual defense. Yes ... he was definitely up to something. Deciding to play along, Arath pressed his own attacks, denying Lir the opportunity to make his aggressive feints. His attacks weren't overwhelming by any means, but Lir seemed to be having trouble keeping up. Taking small hits from the dull weapons, rather like he had before. Feeling that he had an idea what was going to happen here, Arath changed tactics, doing something he knew Lir wouldn't predict. Hopping back a step after making a few last quick strikes, Arath threw his left hand blade straight at Lir, aiming for his head. A brief look of shock crossed Lir's face before he instinctively snapped his sword high to deflect the missile. Arath jumped forward even as he let the blade fly, swinging his remaining sword in a heavy handed blow at his opponents sword, and bringing his boot down on Lir's firmly planted foot. The impact on his weapon, along with a small nudge against his knee, caused the dedicated to overbalance and make a spectacular fall backwards into the muddied ground. Avoiding a last desperate kick from the man on the ground, Arath stepped forward and grounded his remaining sword tip on Lir's chest. "I really don't have much to add to what Dedicated Lir has told you. Trickery and deception can indeed be powerful tools to help you overcome your opponent, and we should all know that knowledge is power. That being said, never get so caught up in setting up a trap for your enemy that you get caught in one yourself. I could see that he was trying to set me up for something, so I changed the rules on him myself. I don't recommend throwing away your weapon as a distraction in a real fight, but do take whatever advantage you can to win." Siezing the source again, Arath wove air. A small weave retrieved his fallen blade, and another larger one hauled the fallen Dedicated to his feet. With a nod, he sent the Dedicated back to the rest of the group, then turned to his third and final instructor, waiting to see what the next part of the lesson would be.
  21. Arath watched in silence as the next part of the class unfolded. Baran went first, his instructions to his peers going more or less how Arath had expected. From what he had heard of the Dedicated, Baran dove into everything completely, without any holding back. Sometimes to the detriment of those around him, such as his unfortunate sparring partner earlier. It was no surprise then, when Baran rushed at him immediately. The flurried exchange of blows took place quickly, resulting in a sore leg and a probably a sizeable bruise for Baran. "Fine. You've had your fun. Get this over with so I can drag myself back to the Healers." Arath said nothing, but a smile slowly split his face. He could see the nervousness in his opponent, even as his anger was rising. Slowly stalking forward, trying to bait the Dedicated into a foolish strike, Arath kept his weapons wide, presenting a wide, and plainly obvious target. After batting aside a few half hearted strikes, the opportunity presented itself. Baran took the bait and made a heavy stab at Arath's torso. Using his right hand blade, Arath knocked the strike away slightly, then spun into action, rolling down the side of the Dedicated's sword and closing in very close. Leaning away from a thrown elbow as he moved, Arath found himself squarely behind Baran even as he tried to turn. Blades slashing quickly in what would have been a killing move, Arath drew one blade across the middle of his back, and the other struck behind his knees with enough force to knock the Dedicated down. A quick kick knocked the sword from the fallen man's hand, and the same foot planted gently on his back prevented him from standing up again. Thankfully, he had the good sense to stay down. Tapping one of his swords idly on the back of Baran's head, Arath turned his attention back to the rest of the class. "Baran was correct in his instruction. We are weapons of the Lord Dragon. We are here to destroy the shadow. But we are Guardians. Protectors of the Light. We are each a powerful weapon, but we are stronger together. We grow stronger together through unity. You," Arath pointed his free sword toward the young Dedicated the Baran had brutalized earlier, "are you feeling particularly united with Dedicated Baran right now?" The young man shook his head. "Would you go out of your way, or put yourself in danger, in order to protect him in a battle?" He hesitated, clearly weighing his options. Finally he nodded. Slowly. "Good man. But that hesitation speaks volumes. Hesitating for a moment in battle would result in ruin." Removing his foot from Baran's back, Arath hauled him to his feet with a simple flow of air. "The world despises and fears us. The only solace you'll find from that is here, among your brothers. Train hard, but learn limits. There is a time for total destruction of your enemies, but it is not on the practice fields. The healers are overworked as it is without us beating each other to death with swords."
  22. I don't see anything wrong with the broken hip. True, it probably wouldn't be beyond the abilities of a Yellow to heal, but that's kind of conditional on a Yellow being there to heal it. If it was a life threatening situation, she probably would have just taken whatever healing she could get. You can't Heal the same wound twice, so unless there was a Yellow on hand at the time of the injury she'd just have to live with it.
  23. Arath supervised his sparring students with a pained look. Many of them weren't taking this seriously. Only a small handful of the dozen or so dedicateds seemed to show any promise at all. It didn't take him long to decide which ones would participate in the next part of the lesson. Giving the last couple of pairs an extra minute or two to wrap up their fights, he walked down the line and administered healing to those who were in the worst need of it. Generally the ones who had lost their fights. Once he was finished, the Storm Leader returned to his place in front of the group and addressed his students again. "Most of you," Arath said loudly, "are horrible. You wouldn't last five minutes against a farmer with a pitchfork, let alone a Trolloc or a Fade. Thankfully, not all of you are total losses. And a few of you are going to help teach the next part of my class. Gavin, Lir, and Baran, you three will stay here. The rest of you, run a lap of the training grounds and assemble back here." Once the rest of the disgruntled class had left, he focused his attention on the remaining three. "Each of you have something to offer the class. A reason for why your fight ended the way it did. Lir, you seem to have had some prior training, and took full advantage of the unique circumstances of this spar. Baran, you ended your fight quickly and effectively, even if you the force you applied was a little ... excessive. Gavin you lost your fight, and obviously have no experience with the weapon you chose. Despite that, you controlled yourself well, and treated the situation as though it were real. If we could put the three of you together we'd have a decent fighter. "So, what I want you to do is explain to the rest of the class when they arrive why your fight ended the way it did. Explain what advantage your particular attribute can give you in battle, what part of you they need to emulate, and why it will help you to defeat me when I spar with you. I expect you to at least hold your own long enough to make your words credible." Ignoring the incredulous looks on their faces, the Storm Leader turned to monitor the rest of the class. It was always interesting to see what the Dedicated would come up with. Occasionaly it didn't work out too well, but Arath had learned enough about twisting words lately to make just about anything work to his advantage. OOC: Again, sorry for the delay. Whoever wants to go first, give a nice little speech to the class, then prepare for a humbling. Go ahead and write the first part of your spar with Arath. He'll hold back long enough for everyone to get the idea of what you're talking about. I'll take over the end and wrap up each fight based on however you leave it hanging.
  24. Arath hadn't expected either of the warders to speak with him that evening, let alone offer thanks for the meal, or encouragement for a job well done. "Would you be interested in trying your skills with a blade with myself or Kynwric? It's going to be a long journey, and perhaps we could learn from one another. Er, as long as you do not use your Power to win." Arath couldn't help but laugh. "I can give it a try. I doubt you'll be able to learn much from me, other than how to poke a hole in an Asha'man perhaps. We train with the sword, but it's not where our focus lies. And no, I won't use the Power. As much as I dislike being at the disadvantage, I don't care for cheating."
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