Essay for Raising to Accepted: Elissa

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Author: Elissa Roshan

What Was - You will write an essay explaining which of the lost Talents from the Age of Legends would best suit three mid-main, non-Aes Sedai (non-channelers) female characters from the books in your opinion.

Over the turning of the Wheel of Time, Ages become lost and so does the knowledge that was contained within them. Like all knowledge, it can be regained and refined as well, although the Age that originally gave it birth may not come again for a while. A lost Talent is something that was inevitable to happen considering the turmoil that ended the Age of Legends. What is considered a lost Talent from the Age of Legends is a tricky subject as due to the Dragon being reborn and with the Forsaken loose, some channelers are rediscovering what is lost. For the purposes of this essay, what is being considered a lost Talent is one that was lost as of the beginning of the series.

Of the female characters in the series, the three that I would like to see possess any one of these talents are Faile, Min and Berelain. In particular, I would like to see Faile possess the ability to Travel, Min the ability to create angreal, and Berelain the ability to create Power-wrought objects.

Faile is a character who is fiercely protective and completely supportive of those she loves. Due to these attributes, she not only cares about Perrin, but supports him and his home. Due to his responsibilities and his loyalty to his friend, Perrin is torn between his wife, his friend and his country. Faile, who is a strong woman in of herself, is happy to remain in the background while putting her husband forward. If she had the ability to Travel, she would be able to take care of the Two Rivers and be with her husband at the same time.

With Min's visions and intelligence, not only does she have the opportunity to be inspired by one of her visions, she has the intelligence to make something that she sees. Due to this, I feel the talent of creating angreal would be aptly suited to her. Many ter'angreal have unknown powers that were created for unknown reasons. Creativity and intelligence would serve very well in determining what to make and what would benefit people in general to make. Min is a caring individual which makes her more likely to use that talent to everyone's benefit and not just her own.

Berelain is the First of Mayene, a small country trapped by Tear where the only reason they are still independent is through the strength of their leaders and the strength of their economy. If Berelain had the ability to create things with the Power, she would increase her country's economy even more. The ability to create the Power-wrought swords, involving creation of special alloys, the ability to create cuendillar which is unbreakable and would be ideal for use in areas of high corrosion, and simply the ability to reinforce buildings with the Power would enable Mayene to be free without feeling like they have to be subservient to Tear.

While some of these Talents may just being rediscovered, I feel they are still considered lost Talents since only a few select people know how to perform them. I also consider them the most useful of the lost Talents other than the ability to enhance plant life and Heal using all Five Powers. Each Talent that I listed I feel is most suited to the characters for the reasons stated above. Each of the three women chosen, were chosen based on their exceptional qualities in the first place and these Talents would be the icing on the cake. Like all knowledge, these Talents could be lost again, but let us hope that in the rebuilding of all the knowledge, some of it will survive Tarmon Gai'don.

What Is - You will write an essay about how the Game of Houses, while openly accepted and played, is also a factor in at least three other Nations in the books... Explain the similarities and how it affects the nation and culture in general.

The Game of Houses, while being widely acknowledged to have originated and be played in Cairhien, is also played to a lesser extent in Tear, Illian and Andor. With the Dragon being reborn and the Forsaken in many high positions in the various lands, the Game is coming more into the open as well. In Cairhien a subtle glance or a slight misdirection may be a way to gain power and status.

In Tear, the High Lords scheme against one another. While not quite reading into a glance as much as a Cairhienin might, poison and intrigue abound. While Rand was occupying the Stone, Thom helped thwart several plots that were floating around and neutralize several of Rand's more verdant enemies. Like in Cairhien, Thom, the High Lords and the High Ladies all tried to act in secrecy and hide what they were thinking and feeling about each other. In general, the nation and culture are not very affected by the Game being played by their nobles. The common person in Tear never enters the Stone unless employed there and has very little chance of being noticed let alone be the object of intrigue.

Unlike Tear, Illian does have a ruler as well as a Council. The nobility, again are involved in the Game of Houses. The King quite often contends with the Council of Nine. As an example, the first King of Illian told the Council that they could have a palace so long as it was not larger than his. They decided to build the exact same palace just slightly smaller in every measurement. This is a more indirect form of saying that they would not be entirely controlled by the King, yet following his direct orders. This follows the trend of not outwardly showing your feelings, yet conducting an action that sends a message. Again the general populace does not really get involved. The only ones that do are those that are part of the Assembly. This is a third body that contends for power in Illian.

Andor plays the game, but to a much smaller extent. While Morgase was a strong queen, she had to play and maneuver her rivals when she claimed the throne. Morgase tried her hardest to keep the game from taking root, but it still has its forms in Andor. Elayne encountered the same difficulties, trying to make her rivals believe she was stronger in position that she actually was and using rumors amongst other things to convince more Houses that she should be queen. Andorans like to believe that their nation is free of political intrigue that can be associated with the Game of Houses as they feel they are really outspoken people. Elayne has mentioned in the past that queens have been overthrown if the people don't want them in power. Even as outspoken as they are, Elayne had to try to maneuver her way to gaining acceptance from the people and when she was still missing, many noble women in Andor would put themselves forward and try to maneuver Rand into supporting their claim. Like with the Game of Houses, nothing was completely in the open, yet after being subjected to the Game in Cairhien, Rand saw through all of their schemes fairly quickly and got annoyed with them just as quickly.

While the game is more dangerous and widely played in Cairhien, it has forms in many other nations. In most nations, the game does not extend into the general populace unlike in Cairhien. Rand, causing upset and upheaval seems to be unable to avoid the game in its many forms, even causing it to appear more in nations that were free of it before he was announced as the Dragon.

What Will Be - What are you looking forward to most about becoming an Accepted?

At first, I thought I would be looking forward to seeing the City again, but I really think I am most looking forward to being able to get closer to a particular Ajah and become even slightly more entwined in the community. I think this is exciting since is a wonderfully supportive and friendly place to visit and spend my time as well as being particularly effective at relieving the stress caused by being in my graduating year in Engineering.