Alerin's Enlistment Interview (Attn: Drune)

The offices of the M'hael, Amyrlin Seat, Master of Arms, Keeper and the MoNSTers
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Craig
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Alerin's Enlistment Interview (Attn: Drune)

Post by Craig » October 20th, 2016, 2:03 pm

Mordjen, Tower Guard
The grey-haired guard jabbed his sour-faced companion roughly in the ribs. "I swear, one day you're going ta let one of these pups stray, and you'll be out on yer arse Heb."

Heb grunted dismissively in response, meandering back to the guard post without a glance back. The grey-haired guard threw his hands up in exasperation with a loud sigh. "Fine," he muttered, turning to the new arrival. "The name's Mordjen. Pleased to meet you. I'll take you to where you ought to go. If you'll follow me, please?"

Mordjen stepped out in front, taking comfortable but ground-eating strides. As he walked, he chattered amiably with the newcomer. The entrance road was somewhat long, and Mordjen only went halfway down before veering off to the right. He cut across a field towards a large four- or five-story building. It looked like a dormitory, and faced the tall glass Grey Tower itself.

"I never tried t' be a Warder meself," Mordjen continued. "Me wife, Liz, bless 'er. Well, she would probably cry herself to sleep every single night if I told her I wanted t' try an' get meself bonded to some fancy Aes Sedai." The guard chuckled at that, then cleared his throat after stealing a glance at the man striding alongside him. "No no, I watch the front gate, and help carry firewood when there are special occasions. That is more than enough connection t' the One Power for me, yessir. But if I could learn some of the way of the Warders, like how they fight with their bare hands, I would very much enjoy learning about that. I think it would make me better at being a guard." Mordjen seemed to be lost in his own thoughts for a moment, his pace slowing briefly.

"Anyways," Mordjen perked up, "Master Darrow.. or is that Captain Darrow now? Mm, well ne'er mind that. He said he would be seeing t' inviting me and some of the boys to a class with his trainees. 'pparently there's a Blademaster for that now. Am sure that will come about when the time is right. Master Darrow always seems to be busy now, especially with that kid to look after, but I think he's a goodly soul, proper head on his shoulders." They were walking into a hard packed dirt yard, between four buildings spaced far apart. To their immediate right was a barn-sized building all on a single story, with a few people around it. The men and women practicing various forms of fighting styles were spread from there all the way across the Yard. At the opposite end were two newer structures, made of unweathered stone, although the purposes of either was not evident from the exterior. Immediately ahead was the large dormitory hall, and it was towards that and a large set of doors that Mordjen led them. "Master Darrow is a good man, but a hard man too. Don't be letting on what happened with Heb back there, if you please. He's a trial for most, but this Tower is probably the only thing keeping him from finding an arrow wi' his name on it. He didn't mean no harm; I'll keep on at him. The Master of Training's office is upstairs." Mordjen pointed at the set of stairs that ran central through the large lobby. The foyer had a tiled floor and wood panelled walls, with several tables, chairs and benches set out, occupied by groups of trainees in the various greys of the Warder Yards.

Mordjen turned and clasped his hands behind his back, bouncing up once on his toes. "He usually has open hours in his office from a couple of hours before High, until a few hours before Low, if he's no out running an errand. If he doesn't happen t' be there right then, there is usually a book with a pen. You can scribble a request for a meeting, and then come back. Right now, it is about four hours after Early, so he is probably already there." The guard grinned broadly, and nodded. "It is good to welcome you to the Tower. Good luck!" Patting the newcomer jovially on the shoulder, Mordjen retreated back the way they had come.
Ravak Darrow, Master of Training and Gaidin Captain
In the moderately-sized office beyond the Mistress of Arms', Ravak Darrow leaned forward in his leather-backed chair, iridescent quill in hand. The nib made a near-continuous scratching noise as he penned out replies to various individuals. His hand had improved somewhat in the year since his appointment to Gaidin Captain, although he got clerks to write out his words when the letter was important. Improved, but still hard to make out without focus.

Behind the broad shouldered Shienaran was a crackling fire, set in a large stone fireplace that warmed the room. It was warm, but not too warm. Anywhere between the blistering heat of day in the Aiel Waste and the murky depths of night up in Shienar was a suitable temperature for Ravak, although he favoured the former a lot more now.

The room's furnishings had been expanded upon, since his promotion from 'just' Master of Training to this combined role. Everything was Shienaran in style, if not in manufacture. It was a lot easier to get imitations carved than to import furniture from the Borderlands. Hard edges and clean lines were everywhere, all built from solid oak. The desk Rav sat behind had solid sides as opposed to spindly legs, so the lower half of the Master of Training was hidden from view. Two newer chairs sat on a Taraboner rug for the Gaidin's visitors. A weapon rack in one corner held Rav's weapons. His Tower-forged longsword was placed so that the Great Serpent on its crossguard was visible. Beside it rested a stout sword-breaker, a long quarterstaff made of silvery wood, and a simple longbow. There was two further tables, covered in more sheets of paper being weighed down various throwing daggers and painted rocks. Lastly, a small stand held a teapot and cups.

Rav finished a reply with a derisive sniff. He had little patience for the haughtiness of nobles, but he had to be diplomatic in his replies. He wasn't just representing himself but also Riahana, and the wider Grey Tower. He folded the letter, not needing to wait for the letter to dry, and sealed it with a blob of red wax. Into it he pressed the circular pin of the Gaidin Captain: a twelve-pointed sunburst with the Flame and the Fang embossed in the centre.

As the wax cooled, Ravak heard approaching steps along the floorboards outside of his room. He slid the letter aside amongst a pile of other missives, then placed the quill on his desk. Settling back into his chair, Rav folded his hands on the desk and waited for the new visitor.
OOC: Post Alerin's perspective of the guard showing him to the Warder Hall, continuing into the Master of Training's office and him approach to/through the open door.
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Elan wrote:Of course, the problems with observing a chain of command arise when the one in command decides to do something unspeakably idiotic, like taking off on his own for no discernible reason in the middle of enemy territory.

Drune
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PC: Alerin al'Nai

Re: Alerin's Enlistment Interview (Attn: Drune)

Post by Drune » October 20th, 2016, 6:05 pm

Alerin al'Nai, Drin Following quickly behind Mordjen, Alerin tried to keep up, look at everything at once, and listen to what the guard was saying. He didn't really listen to any of it though, as most of it seemed to be rambling. He looked around at the people training, trying to imagine himself in their positions, making a few half-hearted imaginary swings. He looked at the buildings to his sides, wondering what they were for, sure that he would eventually find out. The Grey Tower grounds were an expansive place. Heck, the mayor's house from where he lived could fit inside the large building standing in front of him. He realized he had stopped walking in the middle of the Training Yard and started walking again, hiking his backpack into a more comfortable place. He lifted his Two Rivers longbow up and trotted after the guard to catch up.

Alerin stood in the entrance of the building, staring up the stairs. This is where my old life ends and my life as a Warder begins. His heart began to pound, his breath came in short bursts. "Excuse me." Came a voice behind him and he jumped, looking behind him. A servant or cleaning person stood there, looking slightly annoyed. "Light, I'm sorry." Alerin stepped out of the way and looked around the foyer. It was nice, but nothing he hadn't seen before. What really caught his eyes were the trainees sitting around the room. The rather uniform grey clothes they wore somehow augmented their features. Even to his untrained eye, he could tell that they were skilled in fighting. Blood and ashes, what am I doing here? I am nothing like them. He took a deep breath, Come on you wool-headed fool, You can do this. I am sure some of them were just as helpless as you were when they got here. This Captain Darrow is a hard man, huh? Well, you know what they say about first impressions. At that, he looked around in vain for a nearby mirror before looking down and straightening his clothes. He ran a hand through his hair, putting it in some semblance of order then stroked his short beard. He didn't have the time or tools to trim it up, so he would have to deal with it. There didn't seem to be a convenient place to put his bow or pack, so he started up the stairs with them.

Sitting behind the desk in front of him was an impressive man. It wasn't that he was tall, as the man seemed to be about the same height as him if he were standing, instead it was how he presented himself. He was confidant. He face was serious, just like that warder that passed through his town all those years ago. It was impressive, if not intimidating. His eyes widen slightly, Wait, he is frowning, why is he frowning? I don't look that ratty do I? I just have to appear confident, that will make me look good. Alerin stiffened, bringing his longbow to his side, giving a quick, awkward, salute. "My name is Alerin al'Nai, reporting for duty, sir."

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Re: Alerin's Enlistment Interview (Attn: Drune)

Post by Craig » October 24th, 2016, 12:27 pm

Ravak Darrow
"Reporting for duty, sir." Well that made a pleasant change, having a new recruit present themselves with appropriate decorum. Rav gave the man a quick look, reading in his features. Alerin seemed Andoran, but then Rav seemed Andoran at a glance. The Shienaran wasn't a master at accents like his sister, and honestly Rav didn't care too much about where a person was from. Aiel got angsty over his dragon tattoo; Cairheinin were a haughty bunch with too much time on their hands with their silly Daes Dae'mar; and those along the southern coast thought that Shadowspawn and Darkfriends were childhood stories. Ok, so maybe I do care. A slight smile broke his hard stony façade.

"Come in," Ravak beckoned, gestured to the two chairs on the opposite side of his desk. As the man approached, Rav vanished the missives into one desk drawer, stopped the flow of ink from the inkwell to his ter'angreal quill, and opened the opposite desk drawer a crack. The letters were private, or at least not the concern of Drin.

When the man -- or is it lad? He had a notorious inability to determine the ages of people -- took a seat, Rav gave him another look. Someone who knew manual labour, that seemed clear to the Gaidin. Someone who knew how to use the bow at his side, because only an idiot -- as he had learned delicately from a former Ji'val -- attempted to use a Two Rivers longbow without plenty of training. He made a mental note to introduce this Alerin to Lysira Gaidin at the next convenient opportunity.

Scratching at his thick shaggy beard, Rav started in a mild tone. "My name is Ravak Darrow. I am the Master of Training here at the Grey Tower, which means I'm in charge of the Gaidin-in-training. We call them Drin, the ones in the paler grey, and Ji'val, the ones in the darker grey." Rav himself was in a muted blue shirt. "You can call me Master Darrow or Ravak Gaidin, whichever you prefer." He spread his hands as if to say he didn't mind which name Alerin used, which was the truth.

It was then that Rav pulled open the other desk drawer and retrieved a large, leather ledger. A crisp, new, red dustcover protected it, and he opened it up to one of the first pages. "Well, you've given me your name, Alerin al'Nai. Andoran, is it?" Calloused fingers lifted the quill to the inkwell, activated the thin flow of ink that meant he never had to refill it, and started to write in his chicken scratch on the page.

"I've got a few questions for you, then you may ask some questions of me." Grey-blue eyes peeled away from the ledger and bore into Alerin's skull. Ravak wanted to ensure he got the truth from the lad. "What brings you to the Grey Tower for training? If you're Andoran, the White Tower has a longer history with the Lion Throne, or you could join up with the Queen's Guard, I suppose. And why do you wish to become a Gaidin? Do you intend to become a Warder with all that it entails, being bonded to a channeller until the end of your days or theirs?" His hard glare jumped to the longbow for the briefest of moments. "And is that-" he gestured with the quill "-what you intend to use? It's pretty hard to knock an arrow when a Trolloc bursts into your bedroom in the dead of night." A mostly absurd notion, but his voice was dry as dust. Illianers and Mayeners would laugh at the joke, but Borderlanders would just give you a knowing stare. Trollocs are no joke. The scar along his shoulders were testament to that. So how would Alerin react?
OOC: Please make sure that you answer the questions posed above. Principally, make sure to state Alerin's reasons for coming to the Grey Tower, and whether and why he intends to be an unbounded Gaidin or a Warder. If you have any questions for Ravak, feel free to ask in your response.
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Elan wrote:Of course, the problems with observing a chain of command arise when the one in command decides to do something unspeakably idiotic, like taking off on his own for no discernible reason in the middle of enemy territory.

Drune
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Joined: October 18th, 2016, 7:44 am
PC: Alerin al'Nai

Re: Alerin's Enlistment Interview (Attn: Drune)

Post by Drune » October 24th, 2016, 8:42 pm

Ravak beckoned for him to sit and he did, grateful for the rest as he had been walking all day. Placing his belongings beside him he glanced quickly around the room, admiring the stout simplicity of the furniture as well as the fine weapons on the weapon rack. Alerin looked to Ravak as he began speaking. He muttered “Ravak Gaidin” under his breath to get used to the sound. It was certainly not a Manetheren name. His was, though. “I am from Manetheren. Deven Ride to be specific.” He quieted as Master Darrow continued.

Alerin took a breath as he processed the questions. “What brings me here? Well, like I told my… a friend, I want to be part of something bigger. The Grey Tower brought Hama Valon which in turn helped all of the Two Rivers prosper, not just Emond’s Field and Taren Ferry. My whole town owes the Grey Tower a debt of gratitude. I thought I might help repay it by becoming a Gaidin. I don’t owe those Andorans a bloody thing.”

“As for why I wanted to become a Gaidin. I want to go on adventures. That sounds kind of stupid now that I say it in front of you, but I want more out of life than just being a cook. I know I won’t go running around like Jain Farstrider but still… I do intend to be a Warder no matter what it entails. And to be paired with someone who can channel, that is icing on the cake.”

Looking to his bow, he gave a slight grin. “I may have grown up using a bow but I am definitely not that good. Being a cook requires a lot of your time, even though I was just in training for most of it. I got out to do hunt only now and then. I intend to at least learn the sword. I like the look of the ashandarei too but I’m not wool-headed enough to make decisions like that on looks alone.” He took a moment to think about the comment on Trollocs, unsure if it was a joke. This man was so serious, it was kind of scary. “Well, hopefully you’ll teach me what I need to know to take care of Trollocs before that happens.” At that Alerin gave a half smile. Light, I hope he doesn’t take that as me being cocky Trollocs? While there hadn’t been any Trollocs in the Two Rivers in ages, he had heard enough stories about an attack long ago and even saw a skull that someone had kept.

He shifted uncomfortably on the chair before asking his questions. “I don’t have too many questions. The first one is pretty simple. What sort of interactions will I be having with channelers? How much will I know about what they can do? Actually that is all of my questions. I can’t really think of any more right now.”

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Re: Alerin's Enlistment Interview (Attn: Drune)

Post by Craig » October 25th, 2016, 10:25 pm

Ravak
A cook who wants to be Jain Farstrider. Well, he was underselling himself in spite of the flippantry about adventures and icing. If he hunted with that great bow, he was a step or two ahead of most recruits. And he was already thinking of other weapons. Rav nodded in approval.

He sat forward, holding himself up straight. "I've got The Travels of Jain around here somewhere, if you wish to re-read." His voice gave little of the amusement he felt away. "It's definitely not like the stories, but if you want adventure, that can be arranged." He grinned a touch unpleasantly. It was fun to keep the Drin guessing.

Rav took a moment before answering Alerin's question. "By and large, the classes you will take are for Drin alone. As a Gaidin, it is your duty to protect those within your care. Your focus is quite different from the novices or soldiers, who need to know... other things." He scratched at his beard. "Some of them, mostly the soldiers, like to dabble in how to use weapons, so you may find yourself facing off against a pretty girl in white. Don't let that stop you from hitting them." The grin broadened with genuine mirth. "Trust me, they'll give as good as they get." How many times had Katrie broken his nose now? Three times? Four? The Brown ran rings around him. "Similarly, if you want to learn something a bit more scholarly, you can take certain classes at the Tower. We can get to that once you're settled in, and got a lay of the land."

The Gaidin turned the red-covered book around, so that it faced Alerin. "Oh yes, you'll have chores, potentially beside some of the channellers. Feel free to use that time and your free time to get to know them. You'll want to know who you're bonding. It is not a light decision."

He tapped with the feathered end of the iridescent quill at a blank line. "If you wish to join the men and women of the Warder Yards, you need only make your mark here." He offered the quill to Alerin.
OOC: Feel free to write this bit out and/or pose more questions.

Rav placed the quill ter'angreal back on the table. "Alerin al'Nai." His voice was ceremonial in tone. "You have just taken the first step on the path towards the fancloak. You'll have a few days to pick things up, but the training process will see you getting the proper training in whatever weapons you choose." The Gaidin's voice turned hard. "I shall warn you now, you will be hurt. You will be broken. Even practice weapons can leave their mark, and their sting with be unkind. If you haven't experienced Healing before, you shall." Rav spoke the simple truth - he had lived for months with his body a colourful tapestry of blues and browns and yellow bruises. "You shall also undertake daily lessons in the strategy and tactics of warfare, and you will acquire skills that will help you to survive in the wilds and become self-sufficient, not just for yourself, but for those under your care and protection. And as I said, you will also be sharing in the chores that keep this place running." He added it like a casual afterthought, although it was the least pleasant truth about being part of the Tower. He had duties rather than chores now, and whilst they were as hard and exhausting, at least he wasn't cleaning chamberpots or scrubbing floors.

With that, Rav got up to his feet, the tall chair scraping against the wooden floor. The shimmering, eye-wrenching fancloak unfurled from underneath him. He took up both of his swords, slid them into their scabbards, then slid the sword belt around his waist. "Come," he gestured towards Alerin, then towards the door. The fancloak on his back shimmered brown, attempting to merge the Warder in with the walls. They moved back through the Warder Hall. "You have now started your training here at the Warder Yards with the rank of Drin. As the Master of Training, you report to me as your superior. Your lessons and other training will be directed by teachers. Some of these will be Gaidin, others Ji'val. Regardless of your rank and theirs, if they are the teacher, you obey."

Ravak led the way back down the stairs into the great foyer. The ancient symbol of the Aes Sedai - the black of the Dragon's Fang conjoined with the so-called Flame of Tar Valon - was inlaid in the marble flooring, a striking impression on any that entered these halls. Leaving through a set of double doors, he continued the introductions without looking to see how far, or if, Alerin was lagging behind. "At the Grey Tower, Gaidin are equals with the Aes Sedai and Asha'man, not beholden to them. Likewise, you stand equal to a novice or soldier." A slow grin crossed his face. "That said, Drin do have a liberty or two more. As you are pushed to your physical limits, you have free access to the Mess Hall. Novices and soldiers have prescribed meal times, but whenever you need food for energy, you can go to the Mess."

Now out in the open, the sonorous percussion of wood striking wood and barked instructions filled the air. Trainees and teachers were sparring, practicing, and exercising in small groups, whilst others laboured alone out in the expansive yards. "You will have to choose a weapon, or weapons, to master. I have my swords, but you can see plenty of other weapons out there. Hammers, axe, pole arms, bows, throwing daggers." The last he emphasised by producing one of his own daggers, seemingly from nowhere. He grinned again, his hard face becoming genuinely warm. "You should consider which weapon or weapons you wish to learn. But you will also need to learn how to use your own body as a weapon." The dagger vanished in a deft piece of sleight of hand. "If you end up disarmed or caught without a weapon, you still have to be able to defend yourself and your Aes Sedai. You will find postings for various classes later, but he sure to look up Unarmed Combat as one of them."

Ravak stood and watched the scenes of training before him. He had a lot of pride invested in the regime that saw all of these men and women practicing before him.
OOC: Please describe Alerin's impressions of the Yard and the trainees/trainers as they walk about. Raise anything that catches his attention, or that you have a question about. Make use of the Warder Yards Art Gallery in aiding your descriptions.
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Elan wrote:Of course, the problems with observing a chain of command arise when the one in command decides to do something unspeakably idiotic, like taking off on his own for no discernible reason in the middle of enemy territory.

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