Eye Color: Unusually Large and Icy Blue
Hair Color: Blonde
Place of Origin: Arafel
Chaise Ayende Age: 17 Place of Origin: Arafel Hair color: Blonde Eye Color: Unusually large, and icy blue Height: 5'7" Weight: 140 lbs
Chaise Ayende grew up in a small village in the far northern reaches of Arafel. She was the youngest of two siblings, soon to be the middle child as her mother was with child again by the time Chaise was ten summers old. Her father was a soldier and was constantly gone to patrol the Blight, but he would keep in touch with his family and would never come home without something nice for his mother. Chaise's mother was a kind woman, and out of the goodness of her heart, she assisted the village healer and so in part, both Chaise and her older brother learned their manners from the stern, yet loving healer. Her brother was much older, by birth that was. Without his special birthday, her brother was 16 summers, however, he had also been given his first sword when he was but eight summers. So his brother was only but 8 summers old and despite his size, he would proudly tell people that and they all seemed to understand. Chaise, for a long time, did not understand and so once when her father returned home, the girl asked him. Her father laughed at her and ruffled her hair, something that always made Chaise laugh as well, and then explained to her about duty, honor, swordplay and training. Chaise, the little woman that she thought she was, sat and listened to her father intently, desperately trying to understand this new concept.
When her father was away, Chaise spent a good deal of time at her mother's side, doing her best to cater to her in her final months of pregnancy. She would follow her around and tell her the kind of stories that only small children can make up and she would laugh at her as she went about her chores. She would eventually send her off to play and sometimes she would go find her brother, who was usually practicing with his swords if not trying to sweet talk one of the village girls. If he was practicing, then Chaise would pick up a stick in her tiny hands and try to mimic her brother's movements. This act of cuteness would ultimately get a laugh from her brother, who would in turn stop what he was doing and try to teach his little shadow the proper way to swing the stick she was wielding before taking up his own branch and sparring with the child. Chaise liked to spar with her brother, because everytime she managed to poke him with the stick, then her brother would die well. It was overdramatic, but he died well. Of course, while Chaise was busy doing her victory dance, then her brother would 'come back to life' and tackle her to the ground and tickle her until she started crying, "No fair! You're dead!" Then they would laugh and her brother would go back to his practice. On other days, Chaise would find a few of her friends and they would go catch toads down by the creek just outside the village or play soldiers.
Once, after they had spent the day collecting toads down by the creek, one of them had the bright idea of setting them loose right in a crowd of girls. With their pockets full of croaking, wriggling toads, the Chaise and the boys made their way into town. They caught sight of a group of girls who constantly pestered them and they made their way towards them. The girls giggled and made eyes at them and the boys in turn made gagging motions back at them. They stopped just short of the girls and Chaise nudged one of her friends forward. He grinned at the little blonde-haired girl that was always trying to kiss him. "Amelia," he said and she smiled at him, "I...I..." He turned to look back at his friends who urged him on. He turned back to the girl with a slight blush, "I...think I am ready to let you kiss me now." He lowered his gaze and Chaise prayed that the toad in her hand kept quiet for now. The girls giggled and Amelia's eyes brightened and she stepped forward to him. The two puckered their lips and she closed her eyes as she leaned forward. Quickly, Chaise pulled the toad out of her pocket and held it up to the little girl's awaiting lips. Just after Amelia's lips touched the toad, the little beast croaked.
Chaise and her friends howled with laughter as Amelia's scream sounded through the street and she ran off in tears. Her friends glared at them before taking off after her and her friends patted her back in praise. Chaise's smile faded a little after it finally sank in that it made her cry. She felt bad for a little while, but soon she bounced back out of that and found herself back down by the creek to release the toads again. What Chaise had done had topped anything the others could think of. She decided to keep one of the toads as a reminder of her triumph.
The hour had grown late and the boys decided to retire for the evening. Chaise knew that her mother was still with the healer so that's where she went. The scene that met her there was not one that she expected, or will soon forget. When she walked through the front door, she was met by the healer who wielded one of the biggest switches that Chaise had ever seen. She bowed to her, her eyes not leaving hers. "Chaise Ayende!" her voice resonated off the walls of the house, "What you did was unacceptable, it was just downright mean! Poor Amelia is upstairs right now in such a shock that she can't even hold down a cup of water!" Chaise winced at that, she knew what was coming but Couldn't resist the urge to defend herself. "Tessie, I didn't have no toad, that girl just wants to cause trouble for me," she tried to explain, "I ain't even been down to the creek today!" It was at that moment that the toad she had in her pocket managed to free itself and hop right down onto Tessie's right foot. Chaise winced, nothing good could come of this.
Crack! The switch landed across her backside and Chaise yelped and jumped forward a bit. "Light, Tessie! It was only a joke! I didn't hurt her or nothin', honest!" Crack! Again, she felt the sting of the switch across her backside, followed by another yelp from her. "Tessie!" The switch landed several more times, each time making her hop a little further across the room. "That was for the cursing and the lying, Chaise. Now you march right up those stairs and apologise to the girl," Tessie demanded. Rubbing her stinging bottom, Chaise bowed with a murmured, "Yes, ma'am." She turned and headed up the stairs. In the first room to the right, she found her mother leaning over the bed with a damp cloth and sponging Amelia's head. Her mother shot her a look, one that she knew well and one that she couldn't bear to see from her. She wasn't angry with her, but she was disappointed. Her mother stood up and handed her the cloth and left without a word. Chaise almost wanted to cry but managed not to. When she looked at Amelia though, she did cry. Chaise was 10 years old. She decided not to treat people that way anymore.
Chaise's father had managed to be home when her mother was giving birth. Tessie had taken Chaise's mother back into a room and forbidden any of them to come inside, claiming that it would be a distraction. So Chaise and her brother sat in the front room of Tessie's house waiting. Her brother was busy writing what Chaise thought was a love note to one of the village girls while her father sat next to her and tapped his foot impatiently. Occasionally, the man would rise and poke his head into the room to check on things, only to return seconds later grinning and rubbing his head where Tessie had smacked him. "She's a fiesty one, that Tessie," he had said with a chuckle and Chaise giggled. It seemed like forever before Tessie opened that door again. Smiling, the family stood but the mood suddenly shifted as they saw Tessie's Face. "I'm sorry," the healer said, "But, neither made it." She began to weep. Chaise felt as if she were suddenly falling and the room whirled on her. She heard a different sob and realized that her father had fallen to his knees, weeping for his lost wife and daughter. Chaise looked between her family and the wisdom and without a word, she ran as fast as she could. Away... anywhere. She needed to wake up from this nightmare. That's what it was, just a bad dream and soon her mother would come and wake her up and tell her that it would be aright. "Mama," she choked out as she felt the lump in her throat and fought it to no avail. Chaise sat down in the town square under the lamps and wept for her mama. She was only eleven years old.
Several years later, the family was still getting over their loss. There were times when Chaise swore she heard her mama humming a lullaby in the next room, though, that was at night when she was trying to fall asleep in her own bed. Her father was still gone a lot of the time to patrol the border, but was talking of retirement. Whereas her brother talked of following their father's footsteps and joining the small patrol. Chaise had taken on a job as a serving girl in the village inn to make a little bit of money to help with the house. She would work until late at nights, only to come home to sleep and then to get back up the next day, early, for chores. She tried to keep their home as her mother had, but she just wasn't very good at it. Thank the Light for Tessie, who had always been their friend and helped them through everything, even now. Chase was fifteen then and had begun to settle down somewhat. Tessie helped her through most of her growing up and Chaise would assist the woman with her patients.
When Chaise was not at home or with Tessie, she was working her shift at the inn. It was late that fateful night when Chaise walked home from the inn and into her house. The scene she found there changed her life forever. There, splayed out in the middle of the floor lay her father and not far from him a small, cast iron cookpot. Chaise would have thought her father sleeping had it not been for the dark pool of blood that he lay in, or the broken shards of bone that protruded through his cracked scalp. Shocked, she just stood there trying to figure out how to make her feet move. She needed to get to Tessie. She needed to bring Tessie, she could fix this. The woman could heal anything. Chaise felt her heart beating faster and faster in her chest, threatening to explode. Again, the room started to whirl, but it stopped suddenly as she heard a gurgling gasp from the corner. Slowly she pulled her gaze from her father's lifeless corpse and found her brother sitting in the corner. That was when her feet suddenly remembered that they weren't planted into the floor. The sight of her brother was even worse than that of her father and Chaise could not supress the tears that now flowed freely down her cheeks. Her dear, sweet brother, the ladies' man, sat in the darkest corner of the front room. Blood trickled from his eyes and his ears and his lower lip was busted open. His breathing was labored and Chaise felt her stomach turn everytime she heard the gurgling sound of one of his labored breaths. His hands were clamped tightly across his belly and blood poured from between his fingers. "Ch...Chaise," he gurgled and she gasped and hesitated before coming loser, "Sisssterrr." He took in a deep breath and then coughed a little, splattering her with a few tiny drops of blood. "Jonathon," she whimpered and leaned closer to hear him. "My brother, what has happened here?" she started to cry as she reached up to stroke his hair. He managed a weak smile, "My time has come..." another breath, this time he winced, "Sister. Our time." She followed his eyes to their father.
"No, Jonathon, no," she was sobbing, "I'll go get Tessie. She'll patch you up. You'll be fine."
"NO!" he cried out and then fell into a fit of coughing again. "No," he said more softly and then smiled at her again as he lifted a blood covered hand to brush his fingers against her cheek, leaving her cheek red.
"You mule-headed....man!" she cried, "I will get Tessie, Jonathon. You will see!" She started to pull away but he grabbed her arm and pulled her back. "No, Chaise," he gasped, "Tessie..." His eyes closed and she began to try to wake him. "Jonathon....no no no, Jon..wake up. Tessie what?" she started crying anew. His eyes popped back open gain, "Tess....see...kill..d." Chaise smiled a little and kissed her brother's forehead, "No, Jonathon. Tessie would not kill." He pushed her back a little and found her eyes, "Lissstennn.." he said and choked up something that looked like a black clot, "Motherr, sisssster." Chaise's eyes widened, "She wouldn't." A single bloody tear fell from her brother's eyes, "Tessseee, murrrd...der mommma, fath....errr.And..." he took a small breath and as he exhaled, "Ussssss." And then Chaise was alone. She kissed her brother's forehead again and closed his eyes, as was proper. She did not cry though, which was odd. Lying nearby were both her father's and her brother's swords. Now soaked with blood, the blood of her family, Chaise rose to her feet and picked up one of her father's swords and then one of her brother's and left to find the Wisdom.
The young woman was a sight as she walked down the street, wielding a longsword in either hand, her clothing so soaked with blood and gore that it clinged to her body in a sickenly obscene manner. The twin blades, her father had given Jonathon replicas of his own, gleamed in the moonlight as Chaise went to seek her revenge. She neared the betrayer's home, intent on using the blades to take her head, despite the fact that they felt akward in her hands. As Chaise neared the door, she heard her name called and turned, her eyes full of death. It was one of her father's friends and as soon as she laid eyes on him, she dropped her weapons and fell to the ground, weeping out of anger. He saw the blood and it seemed to take forever before Chaise could calm down and explain what had happened. Fortunately for her, the man knew her family well and knew that Chaise would not do such a thing. He took up the swords and then took her back to his home to clean up while he went to round up the village guardsmen to go to her home. Upon his return, he found the girl wrapped in a large blanket and bawling as his wife gently rocked her in a soothing manner. Chaise stood as he entered and then turned her icy blue eyes to him. "Teach me to fight," she said to him, "Teach me to use those swords." She nodded towards the longswords in the corner. "No," he said. "Why?"
"Because you do not wish to learn for the right reasons. Your reasons are dishonorable. I will not instruct anyone who has the intent to kill an innocent," he explained. Innocent! INNOCENT! That... woman... that....THING killed her family! "I wish to protect myself. I wish to protect those who cannot protect themselves," she said in an eerily calm tone for one her age, "I wish to defend. I will lay down my life to see that this sort of tragedy never happens to another. I will give up my life, what I have left, for the blade." Chaise stood tall and held her ground, her eyes locked with the man's. "You wish for vengence," he said and she cocked her head slightly and said, "No, Sir, I wish to die but I will not end my life so easily and without honor. When I die, it will be with a sword in my hand, protecting those who need it." He clenched his jaw as he thought about that. "I will not be denied," she said, "Will -not-. You can either instruct me yourself, or I will leave this village and find someone more willing." He narrowed his eyes at her and finally said in a stern tone that only her father had ever used on her, "Very well then. As a favor to your father, who I know would want you to be able to take care of yourself, I will do this. Your training begins in the morning. I expect you to do exactly as I say with no question and I expect you to work. If you cannot do this, then I will not begin instruction."
Chaise nodded curtly, "In the morning then, Sir."
The first six months of Chaise's training consisted mostly of fitness. Every morning, Maarcus would have her stretch and run several laps around the village. At first, she could barely do one lap, but he was persistant, claiming that warriors needed endurance. A month later, Chaise had worked her way up to five laps around the village before she would become winded. Running though, was not the only excercise that Maarcus had her perform. Aside from the fact that he made her run wherever she went, provided that she was not inside the house, he also made her carry all of the water that they required. She was to run to the well every morning, fill up two buckets at a time, and then jog back to the house carrying a bucket in either hand. At first, she could only manage a few steps before she had to walk, but again, she worked her way up to where she should have been. This excercise was repeated until both of the large barrels in the house were completely filled. He would make her perform other excercises as well including sit ups and push ups, these were to strengthen her arms, stomach and back because one could not fight properly if one could not stand properly. During those first six months, Chaise was not allowed to even touch her weapons and eventually, she had gotten to the point that she just didn't feel normal unless she did her daily excercises. She never forgot though, why she was doing this or her oath, yet her anger raged inside of her as hot as wildfire in a dry praerie.
She began her sword training six months after the initial training had began. Maarcus taught her how to hold her weapons properly, keeping her wrists loose so she would not be disarmed so easily, and he taught her the proper stances. Everyday, he would teach her a new move and once a week he would call one of his men to come spar with her to see what she had learned. Chaise learned quickly and practiced often, proving herself a very dedicated student. The times when she did not have her weapons in hand or was not busy with the chores that Maarcus had specifically designed for her, she spent talking with the man. He talked to her about maintaining calm and about logic. He taught her the key to defeating any opponent and that was, "Know your enemy." If you know your enemy well enough, then you will know his strengths and weaknesses and you will be able to use those against him. Chaise agreed with her instructor and always kept that in mind. Time seemed to fly by as she continued her training over the next couple years and when she was seventeen, she was fairly formidable against the weakest man in Maarcus' unit. She could do basic maneuvers with both swords and some more advanced maneuvers with a single blade.
Soon after Chaise turned seventeen, Maarcus came to her. "I have trained you as much as I am able to. Now it is time for you to choose your path. There is a place for you in the patrol if you so wish it or you may go out on your own to seek more training," he said to her, his face as stern as always. Chaise still wanted vengence, but she wanted to be trained. She wanted to defend what she believed in, but she felt that she still needed training to perform that task well enough to be worth anything. She didn't really need to think of her answer as she looked up at Maarcus and answered, "Sir, I thank you for all of the knowledge that you have bestowed upon me, but I believe that in order to better serve my goal, then I must seek more training." He nodded to her and his normally stoney features seemed to melt briefly as his lips turned up into a small smile, "I commend you, Chaise, on your decision. It is an honorable one and one that I thought that you would make. I have an escort for you to Tar Valon. Seek out the Warders and perhaps they will be able to further your education. You will leave tonight."
Chaise bowed to her instructor and thanked him again before excusing herself to make preparations. That evening, she would leave for Tar Valon and find the Warders and perhaps one day, she would reach her potential and beyond. One day, Chaise Ayende would find justice.