Name: Sirayn Simeone-Damodred
Age: Mythical, 230+
Origins: Raised in southern Andor as a child. Family is Cairhienin on her father’s side and she takes after her House Damodred half in looks and political bent.
Appearance: Barely five feet and slightly built into the bargain, Sirayn is among the smallest Aes Sedai, and her short stature and delicate features give an impression of deceptive frailty. Even the most determined gleeman could not flatter a hard face, dark hair and eyes the grey colour of slate and she dresses simply, preferring sombre colours which intensify the severe appearance. She keeps a composure like iron; it is all but unknown for the impassive mask to slip in public and she is scarcely any more forthcoming behind close doors.
999 NE & later: One-handed after a run in with some vengeful Darkfriends. She conceals this as much as possible with flowing long sleeves but to little avail as the entire city knows by now.
Character History Edit
Early History Edit
Raised in a quiet village in green and pleasant woods somewhere in Andor, the daughter of farmers lived a simple life which in hindsight has to be described as idyllic. At the time she never suspected the Cairhienin ancestry that made her small, dark haired and pale skinned in contrast to her more robust kin; that discovery came much later. Nor being a typically wilful and obstinate child did she value the generous hand which life had dealt her. Her mother’s attempts to make her give up her wild ways for a more settled life chafed and finally she broke free of her family and headed to Cairhien to seek her fortune.
Along the way the child relied on her wits, deft hands and innate dishonesty to pay her way. She slept in more hedges and counted more coppers than she had ever suspected, but this brush with poverty did not dampen her spirits; indeed, the freedom thrilled her. However this liberty was short lived. She ran into a roaming Blue Sister, tested true, and was placed on a wagon train to the White Tower immediately.
The austerity of novice life scraped her raw, but the youngster soon became star struck by her mentor, a Red Sitter and formed a fierce desire to be Aes Sedai. Feeble in Saidar and easily frustrated, never the less she put her considerable resolve to achieving some success in her lessons, though the impression that everyone was a hundred times brighter and stronger than she has remained with her all her life. This difficulty meant that she spent a very long time in whites. All this time she had retained her innocence and her zest for life; but the Arches were to bring home to her how serious life could be. Though she’ll not speak of them now they had a marked effect on her burning away a lot of the enjoyment she once derived from every day life.
Acceptance was shadowed by dread and doubt. She focused her studies on strategy having decided where she would petition should she ever reach the shawl, but life was no longer so good to the once sunny young woman. Some time after that she gained the shawl.
She swore her oaths a determined young woman, reckless yes, courageous too, eager to prove her worth in the field. Half an hour later, summarily rejected by the only Ajah she wanted, much that was good and gentle about her crumbled to dust. After so much struggle even to reach this place refusal hurt her deeply; instead she found a new and bitter anger that lasted too many years. She spent most of her initiation seething and snapping at anyone who crossed her path.
It was fortunate for her that she had a chilling knack for battle weaves, or her initiation might have lasted much longer than the few weeks she suffered it. However, the damage was done. Any chance to make friends or even alliance within her own Ajah was ruined, her confidence lay in shards, and her hostility for her fellow sisters was all consuming.
She left the city which had been her home for thirty years and never looked back. The northern nations always needed more aid to defend their borders. For decades she devoted herself to the only craft she had any skill for, allowing solitude and danger to wear away her resentment. Too plain spoken to have any aptitude for politics, she concentrated on honing other skills: steel, Saidar, strategy, and a few techniques she does not admit to … stealth and interrogation being among them.
Little is known openly of her history. She rarely dropped by the Tower save to report and pick up a fresh mission and in some cases details of these are still classified. She doesn’t discuss it much herself, but ask a few questions and you’ll soon find out that a chequered history of blood and steel lies behind her.
Recent History Edit
All events should be considered secret unless specifically marked as being public knowledge.
Some time in the past: founding of the Order of the Rose. This secret and illegal organization consists of Sisters who have sworn to serve her cause; they are diplomats, soldiers and spies, marked out by cunning and the only people she will trust.
984 NE: Bonded twice and late in her career, still her only Gaidin. Her first bond was to a young Saldaean warrior, Losyn; her second, to a woman with whom she had feuded long and bitterly over many years, Seiaman. Both bonds ended in grief. Public knowledge.
998 NE: The Hunt for Namandar. An intact Age of Legends city was discovered precipitating a clash with Dreadlords in the underground city itself. The party escaped with some relics but the city itself was lost forever. The failure was chalked up to her leadership but even so short a time afterward, the mission seems to have passed into legend. Public knowledge.
- The Black Ajah Hunt. Thirteen they went after thirteen, following their quarry even into fiercely fighting Tear, but despite a spell in Black Ajah captivity, she escaped with a handful of fellow survivors. The so called Dragon Reborn seized the Sword That Is Not A Sword right in front of her, yet she does not speak of Tear, for she was there instead of back in Tar Valon when her first Gaidin burnt himself to death.
- Headed to Far Madding to catch a very old friend and arch rival, Jehanine Rhessaven de'Gavrielle, but they wound up quarrelling once again. Had some difficulties with her surviving Warder at the same time. Public knowledge.
- Back in the Tower once more Jehanine Sedai met her end. An assassin mistook them in the dark; Jehanine died in her place before their ancient quarrel could ever be resolved. Her fellow sister later returned from the dead briefly during a bubble of evil, only to die at her feet again. Sirayn never refers to this incident and would respond with scorn if anyone implied that it had upset her. Public knowledge.
- Karana Majin fell as Amyrlin Seat and she took it on herself to warn the Mother's successor, Lanfir Leah Marithsen, about the Black Ajah. Lanfir and her Keeper, Lyanna al'Ellisande, were the only two replacements for the original Black Ajah Hunters who died in or after Tear. Public knowledge that Sirayn is involved in some questionable ways with the Amyrlin & Keeper.
- Three Red Sitters assisted her in the illegal gentling of her son, Solin, although none knew his identity. Her son left Tar Valon immediately and turned to the Shadow shortly afterward. A Dreadlord, Amiarin Lucif, had been sent to target her and also wanted revenge after being crippled at Namandar; by encountering her son and turning him to the Shadow Amiarin sought to get that vengeance.
- The two Darkfriends came after Sirayn and her remaining Warder, Seiaman. Both were lured out into a dark cave, shielded and bound respectively, and tortured. Sirayn lost her dominant hand while her Gaidin was half blinded. The two women were rescued at the last minute by old friend and rival Jaydena Sedai and her Gaidin; however, while Sirayn executed her son at the site and left his body to rot, the Dreadlord escaped. Public knowledge that Sirayn got crippled in mysterious circumstances. Rumours have multiplied.
- Was tasked by the Amyrlin Seat with leading a secret mission to rescue the Dragon Reborn from their fellow sisters' clutches at Dumai's Wells. That led to disaster. Sirayn left her second and last Gaidin dead in the mud and chaos on that bloody field, brought home scarcely a handful of her shattered troops, leaving others sworn into dreadful servitude to the Dragon Reborn. Despite great suspicion the Hall got nothing out of her and her name is not openly linked to Dumai's Wells any more. So far that has been her last campaign.
- Dealing with great hardship, loneliness and grief, not to mention the crippling loss of her dominant hand, she put aside her old life as a soldier and fashioned herself anew as a diplomat and schemer. During this period she laid plans which later saw her raising to Head of the Green Ajah. She also met a boy by the name of Corin Danveer, in whom she recognised great intelligence and potential, whom she educated and later employed in matters of Daes Dae'mar.
- Her dead Gaidin, now somehow alive, returned to Tar Valon. Seiaman summarily rejected any attempts at friendship and now serves in the Tower Guard, a constant source of regret and frustration for her, and maddeningly far away. Public knowledge that Seiaman has returned and the two are not on speaking terms.
- Was present at the raising of the boy Corin Danveer to the Tower Guard. Remained completely oblivious to all his signals and responded with incomprehension and disbelief when the boy struck up a feud with her one-time Warder. Even when advised that he had some sort of feelings for her Sirayn refused to believe it. Public knowledge that Sirayn was the Aes Sedai present at Corin Danveer's raising.
- Went north to investigate the Seanchan threat and measure the state of the Borderlands. She and her unwilling companion, Seiaman Kera, did not notably succeed in patching up their quarrel during this trip. However, the ex Gaidin made clear her interest in pursuing a romance with her, a proposal which Sirayn refused with added scepticism.
- In her finest hour, Sirayn schemed herself into becoming Captain General after the Dumai's Wells disaster, and presided over a bitterly divided Ajah for some time after that. Used this opportunity to replace the Sitters with people loyal to her and coerced her bitter rival Jaydena McKanthur into joining the Order of the Rose. Ruled with an iron hand during her time as Ajah Head; she famously menaced a number of troublemakers so badly that they never put a foot out of line again. Public knowledge within the Green Ajah.
- Was seized and held under forkroot by the boy Corin Danveer, an agent of hers, due to his frustration at her callous treatment of him. Despite pressure and traumatic memories, played a classically Aes Sedai game of composure and the boy eventually released her and begged her to execute him to cleanse the shame on his family's honour. She returned him to his place in the Tower Guard under strict instructions that he was never to come near her again. She is deeply ashamed of her fear during this episode; she was tortured under similar circumstances recently and has not recovered properly.
- Found herself the target of some maliciously intentioned Dreamwalker. As one of the only surviving Black Ajah hunters, immediately concluded that a Black Ajah Dreamwalker was about, and went straight to the Tower's only known Dreamwalker - a woman once nearly a daughter to her - for an explanation. This confrontation involved an angreal and a good deal of menace.
- Raised to Amyrlin Seat. More details later.
Personal Relationships Edit
- Her Símeone family in Heartswood, Andor. These simple folk have done her bidding loyally for years and in return Sirayn protects and provides for them. About to be decimated by Amiarin Lucif, a Dreadlord and her bitterest opponent.
- Her Damodred family in Cairhien City, Cairhien. Famous for its dark political games, House Damodred has come across hard times of late thanks to the Dragonsworn takeover of Cairhien and Sirayn is seeking to assert her control over them.
- Her twin children, Solin and Lyssa. Solin, a Darkfriend, died by her hand in 999 NE in what has come to be known as the Solin Affair. Lyssa lives in Tar Valon and is currently a Tower Guard. Mother and daughter are not on speaking terms due to the events surrounding Solin's death.
- The Order of the Rose. All these sisters have bound themselves under her leadership; they obey her for now and in return Sirayn intends to make them the heart of a new Tower administration.
unfin - to add: Jehanine, Losyn, Jaydena, Seiaman, Tayline, Sasra, Telcia, Tiassale, Corin, Amiarin
Skills: Famously a general and campaign leader, resourceful and cunning, accustomed to being in command. Gifted at wreaking havoc on the field. Long ago she was known for her scorching temper and though centuries have perfected her composure a scathing tongue hasn't yet deserted her. The occasion when she deems it necessary to use it is however rare. Articulate and lively in conversation; an expert player of Daes Dae'mar, she observes others keenly, weighs up all factors before making a move, and always assumes people have an ulterior motive. She is accustomed to getting her goal through any means necessary and is skilled at deception and intimidation.
Personality: Her public image is polished to perfection. Ever composed, she responds to new developments with coolness and frequent cynicism. Her distrust originates from a lifetime's isolation and betrayal which has made her independent to a fault; the most innocent gesture appears to her fraught with a thousand shades of meaning, all unfriendly, making any meaningful contact all but impossible. Holds the doctrine of Aes Sedai perfection as paramount. Does not make friendships, nor does she show a moment's weakness save under extreme duress; however, she responds well to courtesy and respect, particularly from those who pose no danger to her, and has been known to seek out such unthreatening company when in need of reassurance. Deeming softer traits such as sympathy and compassion shameful, she scorns them in others, and often comes across as icily polite. She is rather secretive and places a high price on her independence. Easily provoked to irritation or hurt, but rarely shows it, though she is capable of single-minded savagery and holds grudges forever.
Agenda: First and foremost, the greater good of the White Tower. This goal is the driving force behind most of her activities. This ties in with another important task of hers ... to root out the Black Ajah wherever she can find them. However, she also has a number of friends, family and other dependents whom she considers it her duty to protect, where it does not conflict with her first aim. Finally she has secrets to keep and will fight to protect them.
- Strength wise, is the weakest Aes Sedai in the Tower. She famously "made it to the ring by a whisker and the shawl by an eyelash". People generally do not bring this up with her as she is not known for taking it well.
- Shielding and dream wards are two of the most common and useful weaves of which she is incapable, much to her frequent disadvantage. Conversely, she is considered to be the Tower's resident Earth Master. This makes her a formidable foe on the open field.
- Has no respect for business hours. Sirayn likes to work late at night when nobody will disturb her and can often be found in her quarters burning the midnight oil until a late hour. If her work requires the assistance of another, she expects that person to be awake and ready to help her, regardless of the time.
- Often keeps her House Damodred signet ring with her. Not often worn, it stays instead on a chain around her throat, safely hidden beneath whatever she is wearing. Anyone of any political knowledge should recognise the tree and crown symbol on the rare occasions that she wears it.
- Adverse to crowds and tight spaces. As she does not drink alcohol she is scarcely ever found at a party or large gathering; if she ever is, it's a safe bet that there is some political reason behind it, and those who do not wish to be drawn into intrigue should stay away from her.
- Originally left handed. Is still teaching herself to do right handed, with at least a passing measure of competence, all those tasks she used to do with the hand now lost.
- Has a general dislike for the privileged, the undeservedly strong, beautiful or Domani women and the entire Brown Ajah although does her best to keep this out of political business.
- Hates the Seanchan and the Black Tower. Both are hostile toward Aes Sedai on a scale and savagery previously only reserved for the Shadow; she is convinced they are Darkfriends as well.
- Pathological disregard for her own safety.