Basic Description: Valan dresses mostly in black..except for a crimson sash to denote the sacrifice he has had to make to be where he is today. Black pants, Shirt, boots and cloak...even the leather baldric and sheath he has for his sword has been died black. His head is shaven except for the traditional Shienarian top knot. His grey eyes seem devoid of any emotion..only cold and depthless. He stands at 6'1" and weighs approximately 200lbs.
Valan was born the third son of a merchant/tradesman family. His father was an armorer/weaponsmith by nature but also did and had a store where he sold his goods. The smithy was his father's domain..there his word was law..however in the shop his mother held sway. While he was growing up in his younger years he helped his mother in the shop from the age of 6 till the age of 8. He learned the differences between swords and armor and why some were good in some areas while others were not so good. His mother also made sure that he had an understanding and learning of arithmetic and the written language as well as the spoken language. When he turned 8 his father decided he was old enough to join him and his brothers in the forge. He learned the ways of smelting metal to take it from the raw ore. His father showed him the ways of the forge and instilled in him the basic foundation and knowledge that he would need to begin forging on his own. The basics of forging and the shaping of iron and steel. At the age of 13 his father decided that Valan was able to pick up the hammer and begging work at the forge. The first years was the basics..he worked mostly as a common blacksmith making the basic things townspeople would need...the second set..were the special years...the training and mysteries of forging true weapons and armor. His father was a master of the craft and he learned much from him.
However such a good thing was not meant to last. He had noticed at times while he was forging that the kiln would get to hot for proper forging. It wouldn't happen often but to him more then the rest of the family. One day it came clear...there was a project his father was hired for that needed to be done with the utmost speed. His father came in that night while he was closing up in a frantic pace trying to get the forge back up and running. The coals were not hot enough and would take some time to heat. He went to help his father. This project could either vault them up in stature or ruin them completely. Valan tried with all he had to pump the bellows to force the coals hotter but it was taking to long. He felt a pressure building from somewhere when all the sudden a wave of heat came rolling from the kiln and the coals ignited in a fierce fiery glow. The heat was tremendous and the pressure left as quickly as it had built. However what had answered his silent pleas did not stop there. Parts of the forge started catching fire it was a blaze that could not be explained. His brothers saw the flames and quickly rushed in to help put out the fire yet they all stopped suddenly when they looked at him. The fire as all around him yet it did not touch him. It stayed in a circle around him never comming close. The fire was put out and the project finished in barely enough time. However the next day the shop was closed and the family sat down at the table. They questioned Valan mercilessly about what happened. Finally Valan told them about his silent pleas and the pressure he had felt and how it all went away when the fires started. They all looked at him frightened. His father asked him in a shakey voice if he had really understood what he had just said. Valan sat there and thought for a moment and the blood drained from his face. There was only one reasonable explanation for it all.....he could channel. His father decided that he would be sent to the White Tower and that they would deal with it. Valan was frightened. He had heard about what happened to men that were gentled. How they did not live long past it. That night before he was to be sent Valan snuck out of the house and took one of there horses and rode off. He didn't know where he was going or where he would end up only that it would not be Tar Valon.
For three years he rode around doing odd jobs working in a different smithy each time. He knew his family was probably searching for him..and he had no wish to be found. Finally one day there was a man dressed in black that came through town talking about testing men to see if they could channel to join something that was called the Black Tower. Valan knew he could channel however he did not want to just come out and say it so he stood in line with those that consented to be tested. When the man came up to him and tested him he looked at Valan with an odd look almost like the man was saying with his eyes "you know you can channel so why are you being tested?" Valan merely looked the man in the eye and didn't say a word. The man looked around and nodded to him in understanding and proceeded with the test and pronounced that he could channel. The man took all of the ones that passed as a group and opened something called a gateway and brought them to the Black Tower.