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Re: Falconry Part II: Caring for Nestlings
Fri May 26, 2006 12:11 (XFF:

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 precisely an uncomfortable smell, just-

Riani snapped back to paying full attention – she could feel her back straightening, damned the woman! – as the Green spoke her name, gesturing towards a small wooden box standing on the other side of the small room they were currently in. The corridor leading to the room had made Riani somewhat uneasy; she had never liked feeling fenced in, and that corridor had come as close to being trapped as Riani wanted to allow herself. I guess that is one way you’re quite alike a falcon, Riani, she thought to herself as she lifted the box and carried it back across the room, bowing slightly after the Aes Sedai had taken it from her.

She glanced at the Peregrine nestlings again as Demetri Sedai spoke. The woman’s accent was quite implacable even to Riani’s well-trained ears; if the former noble - she no longer thought of herself as such, she had realized to her amazement some time ago; until she was Gaidar she was merely a trainee of the Tower, no more – was pushed to guess she would’ve said Andoran, but…

Who cares where the woman is from, Aethan’Tar? Her admonishment was sharp, given in much the same voice her instructors would assume, and Riani squared her shoulders and looked on as the golden-eyed bird – the one Demetri had named a Kuyper’s Hawk – snapped its beak shut over the thin sliver of meat the Green had afforded it.

Riani was already on her way to her chosen bird – the Peregrine nestlings might not be at their prettiest, but the Peregrine was her favourite and that was that – when the voice of one of her classmates broke into the bustle. It was a question that Riani already knew the answer of since she had heard it answered when she took her very first class on the theoretical aspects of falconry at age seven; her father might have refused her to touch the birds before she turned seventeen summers, but had been unwilling to let any sort of knowledge his daughter could ever require in courteous conversation pass her by, knowledge on falconry included. And Demetri’s answer fit the one her father’s chief falconer had given so many years ago, fit it closely enough that Riani could almost hear the old man’s voice under Demetri’s softer, fuller.

It almost seemed the tiny Peregrine she had chosen for her own knew that was the case even before she had stepped into a circle of a yard or so of it. It stretched its tiny beak up against the wooden ceiling, forcing it wide enough open that Riani would’ve been afraid it would disjoint if her teacher way back then hadn’t told her that was the way of birds. She had been barely tall enough to be able to look down at the nestling back then; now she stood tall over it. Well, as tall as a girl of her stature could stand over anything. She marvelled for a moment over the fact that the tiny bird was not at all afraid of her; as she leaned down over it to make sure the sliver of meat made its mark the feather-clad creature seemed to push itself against her, towards her.

Or towards its food at least, she thought to herself, letting out a wry laughter that turned a couple of her peers’ heads, dropping the sliver of meat into its beak. The ‘click’ when the Peregrine’s beak snapped over the treat was loud enough to surprise the tiny Aethan’Tar, but she quickly fed it the three remaining slivers.

The bird looked content. It gave away no sound as Riani lifted it carefully from its nest, and if Riani had ever been tempted to pet a falcon it was right now, this moment.

“It’s so light!” she murmured softly to herself.

“Yes,” a soft voice said behind her; the Aes Sedai. “They are light. Light, quite trusting, and vulnerable. And ferocious hunters-to-be. Don’t forget that, Riani Aethan’Tar.”

Riani bowed, murmuring a polite ‘yes, Aes Sedai’, but the woman had already continued. Careful so as not to disturb the peregrine nestling in her hand the Aethtan’Tar rose, savoring the feel of soft feather-clad body on callousing but still soft female skin.

  • 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 Nestlings — Riani Aethan'Tar, Fri May 26 12:11
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