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Training Day
Tue May 23, 2006 00:37 (XFF:

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 the Dragon. That mistrust, since his arrival in the White Tower, had blossomed to outright hate. It turned his stomach to think that men who could channel, were being left to walk around, free and perfectly safe.

The Reds had the right idea! he thought, glaring at the Dedicated. Upon his entrance to the White Tower, Jield had laid down the rules. He was expected to show diffidence and respect to the Aes Sedai, Gaidin, Sei’Tar and Accepted and an ounce of respect for the Novices, but Jield had not included the Soldiers and Dedicated of the Black Tower. Thank the bloody Light! I couldn’t show respect to those scum! he glared one last time at the Dedicated, before turning his attention back to the rest of the class.

Tain had decided to participate in this lesson, as soon as he had heard it was to take place. Once, many years ago, as a young boy in the Rahad, he had witnessed a Noble hawking one bright and sunny day. He had been outside the city, scavenging one of the old wrecked ships along the bank of the river, when he had looked up and caught a fleeting glimpse, of the Nobles bird of prey, soaring and wheeling in the air. Entranced, he had made his way to the bank and had spent the rest of the day, staring at the bird as it danced among the clouds. Since that day, Tain had forever thought of a time when he would have the chance to witness this act of aerial ballet for himself.

Today, hopefully! he thought, smiling briefly to himself, before turning his gaze to Demetri Sedai.

The Aes Sedai began the class with a warning. Apparently, though Tain thought it impossible, an Aes Sedai could not do everything. Tain was shocked to learn that this woman was admitting any weakness in front of a class of Trainees and more importantly, before a Black Tower Initiate. Tain was far from the most knowledgeable, when it came to any subject and knew very little of the workings of Aes Sedai and the Towers, but he would have thought that any weakness, on behalf of an Aes Sedai, would be kept from such untrustworthy ears as a Dedicated.

What if he takes this admittance as a queue to try and best her? Tain wondered, taking an involuntary step back, his hand straying to his belt, where two heavy bladed knives should have rested. Cursing quietly, he cast around for a usable weapon, finding none, he stepped uneasily back into the line of the class, keeping a weary eye on the Dedicated. he had been thought how to kill unarmed, in the Hand-to-Hand lesson he had attended and would, if the Dedicated deemed it a good time to attack. He did not doubt that the Aes Sedai would be able to handle him, but he was ready to intervene if it turned bad. Light Tain, you are an Aethan’Tar! What can you do? Nothing! But if it comes to it… My life to stop him! he vowed, taking a deep breath and turning to the Dedicated. I don’t trust you an inch! he projected the thought at the man, grimacing.

As Tain’s mind returned to the lesson, he still kept a weary eye on the Dedicated, placing himself behind the man, at the back of the class.

Demetri warned against petting the bird they were to be working with, as to do such a thing would see them injured. Tain slipped on the glove and waited for the Aes Sedai to approach him and lead him to one of the falcons. When the woman did approach, Tain swept her a deep bow, before following. She described the correct way to move the bird from the perch to his arm and watched him do so, before moving on. He watched the Aes Sedai move on, before turning, slowly and deliberately to the falcon perched on his arm. It was a comforting weight, the bird perched on his left arm, it felt right, as if the bird belonged there.

Maybe it does! he thought, running his eyes, up and down the bird, taking in every inch of the magnificent predator that perched on his arm. I do feel oddly calm… even with this born killer so close! he stared t the bird with a deep respect.

Tain’s eyes met the falcons and he had the sudden urge to flinch. He saw there, within these hunters’ eyes, a cool, calculating gaze. He refused to back down however, looking deep into the bird’s eyes, matching him stare for stare. Tain felt sure that the bird he held was male. There was something in the gaze, something definitely predatorial, which had never felt any maternal feeling in its life. As he stared harder, focusing and feeling his way deeper into the birds mind, he felt a strong kinship toward the hunter. He was not so different to the falcon on his wrist.

You wish to be free of this place and I wish to be free of my past! he smiled slightly to himself and for a second, thought he caught the barest hint of understanding in the falcons eyes. But it cannot be! he smiled sadly, before returning his gaze back to the Aes Sedai.

As the lesson progressed slowly, the woman began to describe the different falcons that they were holding. Taking a sidelong look at the one he held, Tain knew instantly which of them it was. The Gyrfalcon perched atop his arm shifted slightly, when Tain’s gaze fell upon him, he hooted softly and gazed at him intently. He agreed with the Aes Sedai, the bird was magnificent. Tain did not bother to identify the bird upon his wrist. Anyone could plainly see what it was.

When the woman had described the proper method of calling the birds, Tain’s hand shot into the air, to be one of the first to practice. He was not the first, but was close! Demetri moved to him and Tain inclined his head fractionally, unable and unwilling to bow, as he would have wished, with the falcon perched on his wrist. Demetri handed him the strips of meat and removed the large falcon from his wrist, walking away a couple of steps, before turning back to the young Aethan’Tar.

Taking a deep calming breath, he emptied his mind of all distractions, forgetting the Dedicated for the moment.

“Here!” he called, in a clear commanding tone. What felt like an hour passed, before the bird took flight, closing the gap to alight on the young Aethan’Tar’s wrist. Thank you! he silently thanked the bird, offering the falcon the strip of meat.

Demetri returned to him and Tain eagerly handed over the Gyrfalcon, taking the lure from the woman and nodding his thanks to the Green Sister. When the woman was ready, Tain began to whirl the lure, staring intently at the falcon for a second, making sure he had caught its attention, before giving the command. The bird sprang from the woman’s wrist, taking the leather lure mid swing and dragging it to the ground, attacking viciously. Tain took a step forward and bent, to return the bird to his wrist. Straightening slowly, he offered the falcon the last strip and watched the bird intently as it gobbled down the meat.

“Demetri Sedai?” Tain stopped the woman carefully as she walked past. “May I ask, what is his name?” he indicated the falcon with a slow movement, careful not to disturb the bird.

OOC: Hope this is okay!

  • 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 Day — Tain Aethan'Tar, Tue May 23 00:37
    • Properly Trained?Riani Aethan'Tar, Mon May 22 13:52
      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... more
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