The Golden Path
Part One, A New Life
Moiraine woke up early in the morning by the Aes Sedai who discovered her talents in her uncle’s court, Julian a beautiful blonde woman of the Blue Ajah.Their ship had arrived at the southern dock of the city.Moiraine reluctantly woke up ,she had barely taken some hours of sleep since she tried to use her kesiera in order to find out what Julian was trying to tell to her warder ,Triand .It had been an unsuccessful attempt since something or someone was blocking her .She really liked that woman , she had recognized her uniqueness and understood her, but she had some secrets that she would really like to know and of course what would happen to her in the White Tower.
The White Tower , a infamous place for the majority of the peasants in Cairhien and even for some relatives.She felt fascinated by its history from the very first time she had read about it in the library , a room which was rarely used by her kin nowadays . A lonely young Lady , a quite beautiful young Lady (as she consider herself), a lady without any companion or close friend in the vast court of her uncle.Her uncle a savage in a throne , Moiraine knew that his actions as far as their external matters are concerned would lead him to an excruciating death. His sister , a fool with crude manners , a whore who had neglected her child from the very first day of its birth, her father an extraordinary man who had died in battle and with him died the patience that Moiraine had for her kin.But she was moving on!
The washing water felt great on her face, its coolness restored her vigorous state.She brought her things with her – a couple of dresses and her favourite books- on the deck where the two others had already mounted .
-I thought that he would have breakfast first ,Moiraine said
-You will Moiraine me and Tristan have already eaten , Julian replied while passing over to Moiraine some bread and milk
-You’ll have to compromise with that , novices do not get fuller meals, Julian commented on Moiraine’s grimace. Also you must learn to control your temper , because if you continue to burst out like a volcano then I must admit that your studies will not be so pleasant.
-I thought the Tower meant to train women who have the ability to wield the one power not to create hard disciplined soldiers, she commented as she tried to bite the loaf.
-Without discipline child you will not go much far into the discovery and expansion of your talents and Alas you are really talented. Julian pronounced the last word with admiration something that made Moiraine wonder on what she probably meant by that.
After that their trip to the Tower’s Gate continued quite silently and only the natural noises from the people around them , and Moiraine continued to struggle with her breakfast.
Half an hour later they arrived at the tower’s gate where the guards saluted Julian and Tristan formally .She was not paying that much attention to that , Moiraine was focused on the huge building in front of her. She had read somewhere that Oghier constructed it after the Age of Legends and the Time of Madness , a building of vast beauty .
Moiraine’s thoughts were interrupted by Tristan’s gesture to dismount and get her things .Julian approached her and she followed her.
-Now we will have to go to the Amyrlin’s Seat and then you’ll probably be sent to the Mistress of Novices office in order to show you your rooms and get the lowdown on your studies and duties. Alright?
-Yes Julian ,Moiraine replied , “lowdown? What kind of word is that?It is obvious that Julian is not the heiress of the Noble house of Jian , but it does not matter since she is a well educated person and above all she was the woman who freed her from that luxurious prison .
They came upon the great stairs that lead to the main corridors, there Moiraine saw several young girls in grey and others in white and the small lectures that Julian gave her during their time in the boat , those in white were the Accepted , girls who were only a step before their rise to the long lusted position , that of an Aes Sedai . The others were the novices the rank that she would have in a while.
While they were walking through the corridors several girls saluted properly Julian , Moiraine observed that they were trying to avoid a particular room from which angry voices were heard . She could not avoid it though because they had to pass through it , it was the office of Mistress of Novices .There they found a girl who possibly had the same age as Moiraine , only that she was blonde and taller than her . The girl was very beautiful she thought
Do you understand me Siuan Sanche this behaviour cannot be tolerated you will show respect when Accepted talk to you,a rather stern woman with ageless characteristic addressed angrily the girl
-But Sertine Sedai she provoked me , came the reply in a rather proud tone which made a vivid impression on Moiraine
-It doesn’t matter !She was an Accepted you ought to respect her !And I will not have you defying every authority here ! Now go to the kitchen Mistress and tell her that you’ll be scrubing pots there for a month!
-Yes Sertine Sedai , the novice replied with pride even if she had been defeated she did not show any signs of it , something that made Moiraine instant like her even if herself would not end this in the same way.
Siuan left the room with red cheeks and fast strides while Julian pattered Moiraine in the shoulder in order to remind her of their work in there.Finally Serine paid notice to them.
-Julian , its great to see you again after so long.And this is the reason why you were delayed at Cairhien I guess.
-Well yes , this is Moiraine Sertine and she has the potential to become the most powerful Aes Sedai that this Era has ever known.Child salute Serine Sedai, she encouraged Moiraine.
It is a pleasure to meet you Sertine…ehm.. Sedai , she felt a little awkward , she did know that she was capable of becoming what Julian said but being addressed to the Mistress of Novices like that just did not feel right , it would not allow her to perform her notorious pranks.
-Well it is nice we have found a talented one but only time will tell of what she will become, she said firmly .At this Moiraine frowned , she did consider herself capable to do anything that passed her mind .But I think that is time for you to visit the Amyrlin this is important news and then come back to perform the ceremony.
-Thank you Sertine , Moiraine follow me please.
They walked through many corridors and they majority of them seemed to have been deserted for centuries despite the fact that Aes Sedai still dwelled there .Through al of their route one word had remained in Moiraine’s mind ..ceremony, what did the Mistress of novices mean by that, were they going to perform a welcoming dinner or an acceptance speech?Well if she had not previously witnessed the incident with that novice she could believe that but now , well that did not matter since she and Julian were about to meet the Amyrlin Seat! A woman whose vast power among the lands could make Moiraine’s uncle look like a lesser noble living in the border lands, the profound achievements that she could accomplish with the One Power made her shiver.She was about to ask Julian what was the Amyrlin’s name but they stopped in front of some huge oaken doors carved with the flame of Tar Valon
-Well we arrived young one , inside we will meet The Keeper of The Chronicles and the Amyrlin Seat , I must remind you to behave yourself and everything will be fine, allright?
-Yes Julian Sedai, muttered Moiraine , she disliked the fact that she had to be treated like a child by everyone , including Aes Sedai!
They stepped inside the room which was full of books , as she observed, inside two women awaited them , the Amyrlin was sitting in a throne and the Keeper on a seat beside her.
-Well Julian this is the young girl of which you wrote me, the Amyriln said
-Yes Amyrlin, this is Moiraine Damodred of the noble House of Damodred in Cairhien, niece of King Laman and a wielder of the One Power, was Julian’s reply.
-You come from a House powerfull in the One Power and if some relatives die you could become the Queen of the Golden Throne ,interesting, most interesting , she said as if muttering to herself . Well you are welcomed here to study and to cultivate your talents.Now Julian I believe you have more important business than a novice’s acceptance ceremony. Gitara please call an Accepted to take this child downstairs, she commanded the Keeper who followed her orders like a humble servant would do to a queen.
Moiraine felt great at the Amyrlin’s command , she thought that this ceremony would not last long and she would begin her training shortly.
After a few seconds an Accepted appeared , she was a stern girl not much older than her with a certain pride on her face that could outmatch her own when she appeared in public beside her mother.
-Follow me novice and try to keep up with me , the last scathing comment made Moiraine furious, the Accepted could have been taller but she could not be so rude!!
She followed her , “what they meant by downstairs must be definitely the lower levels of this tower” Moiraine thought.The Accepted was not walking , she was striding! It was difficult to keep up with her , she was definitely doing this in purpose.
When they finally arrived she saw two Aes Sedai , one of them was holding a grey dress , the other moved closely to her.
-Child , it is time for you to get rid of your clothes , by that you denounce the ways of your old life for new ones .These may lead you to the uttermost purpose the rise to an Accepted. Now take off all your clothing, she said sternly and nothing seemed to bother her ageless features .
Moiraine was somehow used to strip in front of others , her nanny never left when she changed clothing, but these two were foreigners, two Aes Sedai whom she had never met before .She had to do what they said an she begun taking of her clothes, when she was completely naked she received the grey dress and she putted it on .
-Now these clothes will be burned , the destruction of the first bond with your previous life, the other red haired Aes Sedai declared while putting the garments -perfect Cairhien silk- on fire.
She was left watching the first link she to her kin being vanished, if they knew her they would have understand that nothing could integrate her with them anymore .
When the ritual ended she was ordered to follow that creepy Accepted to her room in the Novice’s bowers because it was rather late for her to begin her duties and therefore she had to get some rest because tomorrow would be a hard day full of duties and assignments.
When she was shown her room and got rid of that annoying girl, she lied on her bed while a sound came from the room next to hers , someone was sobbing. Moiraine leaned on the wall when she discovered a small hole from which she could see a girl -the one whom she had met on the Mistress of Novices office weeping .She left a sigh for the sight of that poor girl but it seemed that Siuan -as Moiraine thought the girl’s name was – heard it and a commanding response came from the other room : “Who’s eavesdropping on me ?”