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A Commanding Presence?
Wed May 24, 2006 23:13 (XFF:

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 say the least. Looking away from those predatory eyes, she listened as Demetri Sedai explained the types of falcons they might have. She had heard of a few of the types in passing, but never having officially been instructed in any sort of falconry, she had nothing more than minimal knowledge in any of it. When the explanations were over, she glanced over the falcon on her wrist once again, taking into consideration what they had just been told.

"I think I've a Merlynn, Demetri Sedai," Arin said. The Aes Sedai nodded, confirming Arin's guess as correct, and Arin breathed a slight sigh of relief – she didn't like being wrong, especially not in front of large groups of people.

The Aes Sedai demonstrated using Arin's falcon – watching the birds in flight was truly something to see – and after that, it was their turn to try to command these birds. Arin watched a few others go before her, glad that she did not have to be first. But her turn came before too long, and soon enough she was up at the front once more. This time, however, she would be doing more than just holding the bird while it flew to someone else.

Demetri Sedai gave Arin a few scraps of meat and then took the Merlynn from Arin and walked away with him. Arin paused for a moment, took a breath, and then held up her hands, wiggling a finger of one hand through the other hand as she'd seen the Aes Sedai do. However, when she tried to yell, only a small cough, perhaps with some of the semblance of a word, emerged. Arin silently berated herself for becoming nervous enough that her voice would catch, and tried again. This time, in the same voice she used when she'd needed to command a horse to do something, back when her only source of amusement had been to ride, she yelled, "Here!" There were a few flaps of wings, and then the falcon was back to her hand.

Arin smiled and carefully presented a piece of meat to the bird, which he snapped up in an instant. Demetri Sedai took the falcon back, walking away again, and leaving Arin with the lure. Arin waited until they were a suitable distance away, and then began to whirl the string. When the lure's circle had become large enough, she yelled again, "Here!" The falcon took off from the Aes Sedai's gloved hand and was to her in an instant, slamming the lure straight into the ground.

Arin slowly held out her glove for the bird to climb back onto. When he did so, she carefully straightened and gave him another piece of meat, which he accepted with gusto. She looked him over again, admiringly – these were indeed lovely birds.

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    • A Commanding Presence? — Accepted Arin Alistaire, Wed May 24 23:13
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