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Properly Trained?
Mon May 22, 2006 13:52 (XFF:

The glove was somewhat too big for Riani’s hands; then again, most gloves were unless they were made to fit her. Her small hands were an annoyance when handling certain weapons – like the sword, for example! – but her mother had just the same hands and had never had any problems with falconeering, so Riani hoped the same would go for her.

She listened patiently as the Aes Sedai listed her rules and the dangers that were involved in falconeering; it was a lecture Riani had heard on several occasions before (even if her father had not allowed her to try her hand with falcons before she left for the Tower she had still been included in the theoretical lessons given to her and Terian, even to her older brother, actually, when he was still alive.

The thought of her brother, dead long since, made her heart beat faster, and momentarily she even closed her greenish eyes in order to see his appearance before her inner eye. Her parents - or anyone else for that matter, Riani wasn’t even sure she understood it herself – had never understood why Riani had reacted so much stronger emotionally to Mihraim’s death than that of Terian; after all Terian was both the closest in age and the one who had died last.

Mouthing a short prayer for her two deceased brothers, Riani watched as the Aes Sedai helped each of the students get a un-hooded falcon onto their gloved hands. Despite the Green’s word of caution one or two did look as they at least considered petting theirs; it wasn’t that Riani did not understand the temptation, but the deep wounds she had seen inflicted on the birds’ natural prey was as strong a deterrent as was needed. Better keep to kittens, she thought with a wry smile.

Finally it was her turn. To Riani’s shame – she didn’t quite blush, but it was close – she needed the Aes Sedai’s hand in cupping her hand just so; apparently she had it slightly wrong. Other than that the bird’s transferral from its perch to her hand went without further issues, and as Riani returned to her place, watching the perched falcon with somewhat wary eyes and no little anticipation, she made sure not to do any quick or hurried movements that could possibly make the Peregrine believe she was some sort of food.

Peregrine. Her heart had very nearly jumped as she realized the Aes Sedai meant to give her one of the birds that had always been her very favourite; in fact she more than suspected that her own glee had played at least part in her troubles with getting the proud falcon onto her cupped, gloved hand. Its appearance was as the strong-faced, tall woman had said, of course; its blue-brown back matched the drawings in her father’s books. That, and a far more evocative image; a painting of her brother, probably not too long before he died at such a tender age, and his falcon, Feria. The Peregrine Feria.

As such there was no doubt in her feminine voice as Riani stated that her falcon was a Peregrine, and the Aes Sedai nodded before continuing to the next student.

Right. Riani looked over at the Aes Sedai, standing a few yards away. The falcon was perched on her hand, its eyes seemingly scanning the world surrounding it, and the mere sight of its talons and beak, let alone the thought of either coming into close contact with any of her exposed flesh, made Riani shudder. I guess I had better do this before I lose courage, Riani thought with a quick glance at Sirestes; she had no wish whatsoever of failing in front of the tall Aiel.

“Here!” Her voice rang loud and clear despite – or maybe because of; for some reason Riani always sounded the most calm when she was in reality anything but – her nervousity, and while her finger might wiggling just as much from fear as from its owners will – it worked! The falcon willingly returned to Demetri Sedai’s hand, scrap of meat in beak, and Riani prepared for her next task. After having made sure the lure was securely fastened to the leather rope she started swinging it, again in imitation of what the Aes Sedai had done only minutes earlier. On the rope’s fourth or fifth circle, lure being but a blur even to Riani’s relatively sharp eyes, she called again. “Here!” The Peregrine knew not the word ‘hesitation’, and within seconds the leather lay on the ground, soundly defeated by piercing talons.

Remembering what the Green had said about quick movements – and now knowing first-hand that everything she had said about the falcon’s sharp eyes and hunting instinct was true – Riani bent slowly down towards her falcon, rewarding it with the second scrap of meat after it had jumped onto her gloved hand once more.

  • Falconry Part I: Train the TrainerGeneral Demetri da'Faile Sedai, Green Ajah, Sun May 21 15:18
    The class was blessedly small—the raptors didn’t mind so much the attention, but often in larger crowds Trainees and others got brave and reckless and did stupid things that resulted in injuries.... more
    • Starkly Feathered ContrastMajor Locke Lemain, Dedicated, Fri May 26 10:53
      Locke felt a small twinge of amusement pass through him, at the idea of anyone having small animals or children stowed away somewhere. What an unlucky day for someone who kept a friendly pet rat... more
    • Falconry Part II: Caring for NestlingsGeneral Demetri da'Faile Sedai, Green Ajah, Fri May 26 08:24
      Demetri let everyone run through the exercises of getting the birds to come when called and saw that most achieved success after only a few tries, though it was hardly surprising. She'd chosen birds... more
      • A TwistMajor Locke Lemain, Dedicated, Sun Jun 4 16:12
        Locke's brow furrowed slightly at the idea that a lesson would involve coddling chicks. It was unexpected and pleasant, the kind of nuturing thing that one would not see at the Black Tower. Fatty... more
      • Falconry Part III: Going HuntingGeneral Demetri da'Faile Sedai, Green Ajah, Thu Jun 1 06:11
        Demetri led the class out of the mews quietly, studying the looks on their faces as they passed her; she saw reverence, happiness, contentment—everyone seemed to have enjoyed this portion of the... more
        • NosediveMajor Locke Lemain, Dedicated, Fri Jun 9 20:53
          Locke meandered silently amongst the rest of the class, mulling over the prospects of falconry as applied to military concept. It was not as hazy a comparison as one would think, on the most basic of ... more
        • Lesson Closed!Taryn, Tue Jun 6 07:22
          The following people got Falconry credit: Riani Aethan'Tar Accepted Celeste Accepted Arin The following have an extension until June 11: Tain Aethan'Tar John, if you need an extension, just shoot me... more
        • Gaining ConfidenceAccepted Arin Alistaire, Mon Jun 5 21:15
          Arin donned her glove once more and examined it on her hand, deciding as she did that it was a bit on the large side; being a small person, she also had fairly small hands. She deposited it back in... more
        • HuntingAccepted Celeste Illharess, Sun Jun 4 22:22
          Celeste rifled through the box of gloves. Searching around for one that fit her. It took her awhile to find a left handed glove and longer still to find one that fit perfectly. Being nearly the last... more
        • Bird of PreyRiani Aethan'Tar, Sun Jun 4 14:42
          Riani sat easy in her saddle, enjoying the sensation of sun’s warming touch. Her green-grey eyes had long since accustomed themselves to the brightness of the wooded hill-land in which they were... more
      • Exaggerated CareAccepted Arin Alistaire, Mon May 29 22:55
        Arin followed Demetri Sedai as Demetri led the group of students to the aviary, walking slowly. Perhaps she was walking a shade too slowly… but better to be over-cautious when dealing with animals... more
      • NestlingsAccepted Celeste Illharess, Fri May 26 18:55
        Raising her hand to gain the attention of her class, Demetri Sedai announced the start of the next phase of the class. They were to return the birds currently on hand to the mews and proceed to work... more
      • Re: Falconry Part II: Caring for NestlingsRiani Aethan'Tar, Fri May 26 12:11
        It was warm and dry, and Riani swallowed a yawn. Light, but she was tired! Or not tired, really, merely a bit…unaccustomed…to the heat and dryness combined with the strong smell of bird. It wasn’t... more
    • A Commanding Presence?Accepted Arin Alistaire, Wed May 24 23:13
      Arin gazed levelly at the bird on her wrist, and it looked back at her, its gaze equally commanding. She'd never been this close to one of these birds before – it was an interesting experience, to... more
    • Basic techniqueAccepted Celeste Illharess, Wed May 24 03:40
      It was a short wait for Celeste as Demetri Sedai cleared the last few who had rushed to make it for the lesson. As one of the last to arrive herself, Celeste busied herself studying the glove that... more
    • Training DayTain Aethan'Tar, Tue May 23 00:37
      Tain smiled slightly to himself as the man, a Dedicated from the Black Tower, was called down firmly, but not cruelly. Tain had always had a severe disliking of the men and women that had sworn to... more
    • Properly Trained? — Riani Aethan'Tar, Mon May 22 13:52
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