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Meet Pierah
Thu Oct 26, 2006 05:26 (XFF:

“It’s not a question of want or don’t want, Pierah, it’s a question of duty. And you have yours to perform. Find Novice Khaji after the midday meal and show her around. She’s new to the Tower and needs to see a friendly face.” A Novice jumped as Pierah passed them, her imitation of Madeline flawless, if colored with a little spite and bitterness. “What are you looking at, Novice?” She spat out. “Shouldn’t you be doing something useful, like scrubbing the floors or kissing up to Aes Sedai?” She strode on by with long legs before the girl could even squeak out an answer; the answer wasn’t important, neither was the stupid Novice.

“Pierah, you shouldn’t be so hard on that one, it’s not her fault.” The soft voice of Brioc interrupted her stride and she came to a stop to look at the older Accepted, his golden-brown curls framing a face that only she thought of as handsome. She knew she was infatuated with Brioc, but he saw her merely as a friend, nothing more. No, she hadn’t told him of her feelings for him, the shame of it would mortify her—but he’d made it perfectly clear that he was like the old, staunchy sort that thought of their studies first and everything else as not important.

“No, it’s Madeline Sedai’s fault.” Pierah said with an angry sigh. Running long, slender fingers through flaming red hair, it only caused the curls to frizz more under her abuse. “I’m this close from figuring out that translation, this close from changing what we know about the Trolloc Wars, and she calls tending to some green Novice important.

He reached out and wiped at her freckled nose. “You have a smudge.”

The tenderness of the gesture was more than she could bear. She thought her studies were important, as important as he thought of his studies, but the proximity was just too much. “I hafta go, Brioc. Otherwise I won’t be doing my duty.” Pivoting on her heel, she refused to look back and see what sort of expression was on his face. Was it hurt? Was it puzzlement? No, she couldn’t look, it would be pathetic, and no matter how pathetic she was, Pierah wasn’t going to behave like some Green wannabe, besotted with every pretty face that came along.

It was time for the midday meal and Pierah had chosen to find this Novice Khaji during rather than after because otherwise there would be no way to track down the girl amid the labyrinth of corridors, rooms and hallways. At least if it was noon, she would know where to find her. Besdies—she'd gone to the girl's room and been informed by one of the sniveling Novices that Accepted Laska had picked her Novice up and led her to the Dining Hall. When this was all over, she was going to have a talk with that suck-up Shawl-wearing wannabe. Laska never did anything unless it was to make herself look good and Light knew that any one of her Accepted peers knew this even if the rest of the White Tower seemed blinded. She wasn't so sure that she wanted the Shawl anymore, not if it meant losing her common sense along the way.

The Novice Dining Hall was much like the Accepted Hall, except that it was larger and less personalized. The cooks and servants were dressed the same, but the food they served was a little more plain, a little less—appetizing. Light, she’d been overweight before coming to the White Tower, but after seven years of eating the gruel they tried to call “food”, Pierah had lost all remnants of her body fat to reveal a slender waistline, impressive chest and long legs that were now much more womanly.

But though she’d lost the fat and become attractive from the neck down, Pierah never could call her face pretty or beautiful. “Slightly comely” was as close as she could come with the long nose covered in freckles contrasting against milky white skin, lips that were maybe too full, large blue eyes that made her look permanently surprised unless she squinted (and when she did that, it only made her look short-sighted) and then a head of flaming red hair that would never allow itself to be tamed, no matter if she bound it up, left it down or chopped it all off.

But she was going to be Brown, and looking pretty (for anyone except Brioc of course) made no difference. Books didn’t care if you were fat or thin, pretty or ugly, they didn’t even care if you were intelligent or dumb as an ox. You just had to appreciate them and they would give up their secrets with enough time and attention.

It didn’t help that she had had plenty of time to pursue her studies in an effort to be a Brown. Seven years as a Novice, and she was on her eighth year as Accepted. She’d come to the Tower when it was discovered she had the ability to learn to channel, and among those with just the ability to learn she was one of the strongest—though still weaker than some of the weakest wilders. Why she was fifteen years into the Tower and not yet earned the Shawl was beyond her. Maybe it was her attitude but she’d given up trying to progress her channeling abilities when it seemed fairly evident that her earning the Shawl would have absolutely nothing to do with it. As a result, some of the Novices whispered as she passed by, her infamy in terms of Acceptance length beginning to grow on par with Arwyn Sedai. As Pierah passed, she glowered at the Novices into silence until she came up on Khaji, the girl’s likeness described to her by Illusion.

“Novice Khaji.” Pierah announced, sitting abruptly across from the girl as the fork stopped in its ascension to her mouth. “I’m Accepted Pierah, and I’m to be your guide and—mentor—“ she nearly choked on the word. Mentor. Light, when she’d been a Novice, she didn’t have a mentor, no, she’d been stumbling her way through the Tower trying not to flub up the rules too much. “Madeline Sedai may have mentioned an Accepted would come to meet you today.”

“Yes, she did, Accepted.” The woman said, her tone both clear and subdued.

“Good, finish up your meal and then we can move along. I have a lot of work to get back to, so you won’t mind if I make this as quick as possible.” Pierah settled back on the chair, crossing arms over her chest to wait. The Novice looked at her for a long moment, then when it seemed apparent that Pierah was going to wait, she continued eating. Her movements were efficient, putting away the food without wasted effort or time and within the space of five minutes, her plate of questionable culinary efforts had been cleaned.

“Put your plate into that pile there and let’s go.” Pierah prompted, letting Khaji put it into the dirty dishes pile and following after her. “I suppose I should ask you about yourself, but to be honest, Novice Khaji, it doesn’t matter. Who you were and what you did in your former life are best left forgotten as you move forward. If you fail—well just pick up your life where you started, but if you succeed, the Tower will make you into something you could never dream about.”

“I don’t understand what you mean, Accepted.” The girl replied in that same quiet, subdued tone.

“I came from an unsuccessful merchant family in Arafel, there’s a girl here who is the cousin to Queen Elayne of Andor, down the hall from me in the men’s wells is the brother to one of the High Lords of Tear while my next door neighbor in my well grew up in some backwater town in Murandy. We come from all walks of life, but what we do here is the important thing, you see? It doesn’t matter who we were, we’re now Novices and Accepted and hopefully someday Aes Sedai. We become a nation of our own, a conglomerate of the many who all have one thing in common: we are unique with our ability to channel the One Power.”

The Novice nodded her head, either in understanding or just so that Pierah wouldn’t have to continue her extrapolation. Either way, the Accepted was grateful that she didn’t have to continue on that course. She’d said enough and Khaji would need to learn to catch on quickly when someone explained something.

“Okay, so I’m going to take us around the Gardens, show you the Training Grounds where we shouldn’t be, but every Novice needs to know where to go to stare at topless men with glistening muscles wielding dull wooden implements to bruise each other with, to the Library, the grandest in the Westlands, and then when you’ve worked up enough questions, I’ll answer them for you. And then we move on to the fun part—teaching you how to channel consciously.” She looked down at the girl beneath light lashes and wide blue eyes. “You with me so far, Novice Khaji? Or do you have questions now? You can ask as we walk, if you wish.”

The girl shook her head in silence and Pierah turned them left to take them out into the sunlight to where the largest and most magnificent gardens in the world were tended.

OOC: I emailed you a little about this string, so if you have any questions, just refer to it or give me a shout!

  • A Flurry of EventsNovice Khaji Nagora, Wed Oct 25 19:37
    “Do you have questions, child? Anything you are curious about, and would like to know? Anything that I have said that makes no sense to you? Ask, child, ask. If not, I’ll send for a novice to help... more
    • Meet Pierah — Accepted Pierah, NPC, Thu Oct 26 05:26
      • Flounder in the Training YardNovice Khaji, Thu Oct 26 15:32
        “Okay, so I’m going to take us around the Gardens, show you the Training Grounds where we shouldn’t be, but every Novice needs to know where to go to stare at topless men with glistening muscles... more
        • Loudness in the LibraryAccepted Pierah, NPC, Thu Nov 2 07:46
          He tweaked her arm gently and flashed a smile that never ceased to cause her heart to skip. "No, it was my fault too. I was trying be suave and look casual." "Why in the Light would you do that,... more
          • So much so fastNovice Khaji, Sat Nov 4 20:32
            "You said that this is the biggest library in the world?" Khaji asked as they walked, her voice soft. She looked left and right. SO many isles of books! She couldn’t believe what she saw. She had... more
            • Illegal Block in the BackAccepted Pierah, NPC, Tue Nov 7 13:35
              "Now what?" Despite herself, Pierah had been pleased by Khaji's interest in the books—interest in books meant interest in studies, and although the new Novice hadn't seemed to have much in common... more
              • I can't channel. My wish has come true!Novice Khaji, Mon Nov 13 15:54
                "Are you ready?" Khaji drew in a deep breath and gave a slow nod, exhaling almost cautiously. "Good, it's best for you to close your eyes, it makes it easier to concentrate, and I want you to…"... more
                • Painful PinchAccepted Pierah, NPC, Mon Nov 27 11:31
                  Pursing her lips together to hide the frustration she was feeling—it wouldn't do for her to vent at the girl for something that wasn't her fault— “So, how do I fix the block? What happens if I... more
                  • Creator's PunishmentNovice Khaji, Fri Dec 1 15:25
                    "Any block can be fixed, it's just a matter of patience. In circumstances like yours, Khaji, we figure out what the actual block is and then it's just a matter of working through it, developing a way ... more
                    • Credit!Taryn, Wed Dec 6 04:34
                      I was going to post a response to this and realized that I didn't need to. =) You have credit and you can participate in the Novice Lesson, it's still open for anyone to join and write!! ~~~~~Taryn
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