Second Trial: Father's Honor Daughter's Love
Thu Jun 1, 2006 7:58pm (XFF:

Sarina listened intently as Tira Sedai told them of the next part of their lesson. This was something new to her. Since the idea of justice was still raw in her mind. Living alone for the past several years was definitely not conducive to helping her relate to the interpersonal relationships between people. What right did one human being have to judge another’s actions, or to punish them for those actions? As she was snapped out of her reverie upon hearing Tira Sedai say her name. Even though it was just to assign which case they would be listening to it made her flush with embarrassment. Instead of paying attention to the Aes Sedai she had been lost in her own thoughts the nature of justice and judgment.

She chastised herself and set her mind to listening to Tira Sedai’s explanation of Master Delmar’s case. As she listened she caught everything, but her mind focused on two things the Aes Sedai said. The first was “Master Delamr is accusing a young man of dishonoring his daughter.” This was a new concept for Sarina. Whatever could the Aes Sedai mean by “dishonoring”. It did not make sense to her. She had heard the words before, but this connotation meant nothing to her, but it was obvious to her that the others clearly understood what Tira Sedai meant. Sarina decided that instead of showing her ignorance she would stand back and listen. Perhaps she would come to understand this use of “dishonor” through the course of the case.

The other thing that caught her attention was that Tira Sedai said that the young man claimed that he was in love with the girl and no one knew how the girl felt. This again was a concept of which Sarina had little experience. So little that she did not know what the word meant. Yet she could feel a change in the room when the word was mentioned. Most likely imperceptible to everyone else, but Sarina’s instincts were as sharp as any animal. Some of the other women made a small sharp inhalation and there a small tenseness in some of the men. Whatever this love was it must be a powerful thing that people would react in such a way and not even notice that they were reacting.

Yet whatever love was did not matter. She was here to learn about justice.

Sarina listened intently as the young man Avarin stepped forward to give his testimony. She had believed that it might have provided her some more information about the nature of the “dishonor”. It did not. Avarin spoke instead about his time with the daughter Mileya as a meeting of two souls, and he spoke about them having a deep love for one another. Whatever that meant remained far from the grasp of her mind. She would have to ask later if she was to understand this case. She might have asked then, but her attention was returned to the front as Master Delmar stood to offer testimony.

There was a definite tenseness about the man, everyone would have to be blind in order not to see it. Yet he held it in reign as he began to speak.

“Avarin, it does not matter if you and my daughter are two souls destined for one another or whether you are truly in love. And you have already agreed that what you have done was improper, but can you really understand how much. You are and outsider, not a member of this village, this community. What could you understand of it? We have custom here, tradition that is just as strong as law and both of you; you and Mileya broke that. I claim that you have dishonored Mileya and based on the customs of this village it is true I doubt any here would dispute that. Neither woman nor man is supposed to know each other in such a way until they are properly wed true love or no. But the dishonor is not yours alone to bear, Mileya shares it because she could have said no.”

Master Delmar paused for a moment and looked away from Avarin into the crowd where he had been sitting. There were two women there very much similar, but one was old and one was not. They must be Master Delmar’s wife and daughter Sarina thought when he began speaking again. “I do not know whether you truly love her or not. I do not truly know whether she loves you, but that is why we are here. You have already admitted to the deed and that proves there is dishonor, what I wanted to see is if you will be a man and own up to your mistake. If you had immediately I would see no problem in taking you as a son in law, but no. Instead you have dishonored yourself further by claiming innocence to an offense which you already admitted was improper.”

Master Delmar then pointed at Avarin and added, “there is still a chance to prove to me that you are a man and are worthy. Both of you are guilty of breaking custom. If you admit your guilt and take not only your punishment, but also that of my daughter you might be a man worthy of her. A man wise enough to admit he is wrong and own up to it and a man who is strong enough to put the well being of his woman ahead of his own.”

With that Master Delmar sat down. Sarina finally understood the need for this trial if not the meaning of love and dishonor in context. Whether these two loved each other did not matter. It did not matter that both of them might have been willing. It was not even about the daughter’s dishonor. It was about the father’s. Master Delmar was dishonored by the act committed by his daughter and this man. He could not let this go and still save face in the eyes of the village.

Which is more important Sarina thought, a father’s honor, or a daughter’s love?

(OOC: I hope that this is an appropriate direction for me to take the case in, but it makes sense given what we know of premarital customs from the books. Especially if this is a place in Andor (which is South of Tar Valon) which has been noted as one of the more stuffier countries when it comes to the sex drugs and rock&roll side of life.)

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