Haxia folded the note next to her teacup, nodded at the girl who had passed it to her, and turned back to the breakfast table. “Does anyone know where Amaranie Sedai’s quarters are?” She asked, rather pleased her voice sounded just as pleasant as it usually did in the morning- which was only mildly. Haxia did know those particular directions, although she had never been- but it was usually wise to pretend she knew less than she did. Whatever this was, it stank of Aes Sedai… something.
Beorin Sedai had taken over her instruction in the One Power in the last few years. New girls tended to be jealous of the close instruction, and Haxia always told them that it was a privilege of her venerable status as a novice- which was really a joke for the older girls. Any private tutoring for a novice was generally remedial. But as loathe as she was to admit it, Haxia was grateful to Beorin Sedai. The Grey had started of their first lesson with the acknowledgement that Haxia had needed- ”You’re not strong enough to do this in the usual way, so we’ll have to get creative.”
Other sisters seemed not to notice her weakness in the One Power, and glanced past her struggles with advice that rarely seemed to apply. Beorin looked right at it, and told her in plain terms what she could and could not manage, and what she might modify to get it done. Haxia had never appreciated bluntness before, but it was beginning to grow on her.
Beorin Sedai did send her out for lessons with other Aes Sedai now and then- but always to women who were weaker in the One Power, who had little tricks to share. Amaranie was certainly not that; Haxia could hardly imagine that she’d have anything of use to share. It would be a waste of a morning lesson, which meant that it was something else. While it would be comforting to imagine that it was about her, perhaps a motivational nudge to work harder, Haxia rather doubted it. Her long slog as a novice had taught her, much to her great shock, that not everything was about her. She lacked the context needed to do more than wonder what this could be about.
She nodded in a quick thanks to the novice who offered her directions, drowned the rest of her tea, and stood to make her way to the Indigo Halls. It could be some sort of dig at Amaranie- to force her to acknowledge that she had chosen poor allies as a novice. Or perhaps some subtle punishment, to make her sit through instruction with a relic of her past? Haxia couldn’t do more than imagine. It rankled, to have to leave those analyses and machinations to Amaranie- who was hardly the sort who would manage it well.
The sad thing was, she missed Amaranie Sedai. It hadn’t been terribly inconvenient, when Amaranie was an Accepted- it was reasonable enough to press a cup of tea into the hands of a favorite Accepted, to ask her how she was sleeping, to meet in the gardens for a quick chat. They had grown apart, but Haxia had expected their rapport to return quickly when she gained the banded dress. So it was more than a little inconvenient that Amaranie had gained the shawl, and Haxia had gotten a new set of novice whites, after wearing out the stitching in the first. They had not spoken since Amaranie’s raising, and Haxia could hardly blame her for it.
Haxia stopped in front of Amaranie’s door and grimaced. It would be fine. She schooled her face and knocked lightly. It would be fine! Maybe Amaranie would have something useful to teach her, and wasn’t caught up in some sort of Aes Sedai rivalry! They were full grown women, they could sit through… whatever this was going to be.