Teveriel (prime)/A Paladin's Dawn

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Eorgaen, 5104.

The grey-beard human traced the pattern of the Symbol of Recognition before nodding his head slightly in acknowledgment. "We do not get many of -you- making pilgrimage here." The grey-bearded human gave the hooded figure standing before him a discerning look, noting the gold and eahnor pendant that hung from his neck. "Why have you sought an audience with me, scion of House Vaalor?"

In reply, the elven lord lifted his hand to lower the hood of his cloak. Even in the spartan, dimly lit chamber that served as the Grand Master's office, his hair stood out starkly against his dark attire; it was pale blonde in color and framed the clean, severe lines of his face in a straight curtain. "Grand Master," he began in a tone that would brook no argument. "I would swear my blade to do Voln's great work."

The old man's thick eyebrows lifted at that. "Yet I see that you are already of our Order."

The elflord's eyes glinted as he tilted his head to one side. "I am," he simply agreed. "But I wish to be more than that."

He stepped forward, taking the antiquated scabbard from his belt, and held it out in his hands horizontally in front of him. There was a soft chink of metal against the scabbard's locket as he drew a few scant inches of the silver-white vaalorn blade for the Grand Master's inspection. "This is one blade, forged of many other, lesser blades long forgotten." The Grand Master merely watched impassively as he continued. "Let the Order break me. Reforge me. Let me forget all that I ever knew of war, that I might become Voln's own blade." Sheathing the blade once more, he lowered his hands and presented it in offering to the Grand Master.

The Grand Master gazed at him with new wonder now, accepting the scabbard gingerly. "Come," he said briskly. "Meditate with me."

Fetching the iron candlestick from the table, he ushered the elf through the chamber door and led him down the darkened hall. Glancing over his shoulder, he requested, "Tell me your name."

"Teveriel Anduin--of House Vaalor, as you rightly guessed." He offered the Grand Master a brief bow of the head in acknowledgment.

The Grand Master's eyes flickered briefly over Teveriel. His armor was obscured by the voluminous cloak he wore, but obviously exquisite and wrought of vaalorn in the same fashion as the blade he bore. His boots, though soiled by the road, were similarly well-made. Clearly, this was no down-on-his-luck hiresword, but an elven lord in truth. The only question to his mind was, what could he be running from?

When they arrived at the meditation chamber, he motioned for Teveriel to join him at the altar. They knelt together, and the Grand Master placed the sheathed blade upon the black-and-white marble surface. Teveriel lowered his head, a serene absence of expression overtaking his visage. The featureless globe adorning the altar began to rotate, and before long the Grand Master lost count of the number of revolutions taken by the sphere. "It is clear," he said at last, "That Voln favors you, Master Anduin." He nodded faintly. "You shall receive no special treatment," he warned. "You will train alongside all others who would take up the mantle of Paladin. You shall live in the selfsame barracks appointed to squires and servants both." He paused, arching one eyebrow as he studied the elf's expression. "Is that what you have sought in coming so far from home?"

"It is," Teveriel stated without hesitation, turning his head to face him. "I have lost none of my love for my home," he explained, lifting his hand to rest over his heart. "But my war there is over; the Dark Alliance broken along with the Griffin Sword, my command dissolved." His cloak shifted, revealing the shape of the pendant he wore; that of a Golden Hawk banded with eahnor. "But my true enemy is well known to me."

The Grand Master nodded gravely. "The enemy we share. Yes, I have no doubt of that." With that, he stood and bade the elf do the same. "Go now to whatever lodgings you had for the night and return to us at dawn, in the yard you passed through on your way to my office. Then you shall begin your training, Innocent Teveriel."

A brief flicker in his steel grey eyes was all that betrayed Teveriel's wry amusement at the title. But he did not give it voice. Instead, he rose and bowed his head. "At dawn," he agreed. "Then I shall see you again on the morrow, Grand Master." Arraying his hood to shroud his pale hair, he departed the chamber without further word, moving with purpose. His course was set, and he would see it through to the end.