|Portrayed by||Milla Jovovich|
|Occupation||Aes Sedai of the Green Ajah|
|Affiliation||The Grey Tower|
|Affinities||Air, Water, Fire, Spirit, Earth|
Those that only look casually find that Saphire looks very much like her mother, Amora en'Damier Sedai. Saphire inherited her mother's raven black hair, stature, purposefully arched eyebrows, almond-shaped emerald eyes, and ivory skin. She wears three rings: her Great Serpent ring, her House sigil of four white swans in flight, and her personal sigil of a fire encased in stone. While there are striking similarities between Saphire and her mother, Saphire's face is heart-shaped with a straight brow, her lips are rose pink but full, her body is voluptuously curved, and her emotions are as clear on her face as in her dramatic body language. She is very loud and violent when angry. Saphire often walks with a polearm. She wears simple, honest, merchant-rank clothing in the Tower or an Instructor's black training uniform in the Warder Yards. She purposefully defies her class by swearing, sitting with her feet upon a stool, and drinking Black Ale. Yet she moves with noble grace woven with a Gaidar's prowess.
Before I begin my biography, I must make note to you that it was pieced together in part from my memories, those of my mother captured in her last ter'angreal, and in part from family stories. I will tell it in as complete a whole as I can, although there are some parts in which I can only guess. All of these parts make up the past that brought me here today.
I will only tell of my parents back to the point of their marriage, for it was on that very night when Kader and I were conceived. Shortly before the ceremony, Jel'viendha Sedai gave my mother a necklace ter'angreal she had brought from the Three Fold Land. My mother's near-sister told her that it would make her more (shall I say) receptive to bearing children. Amora en'Damier Davram Sedai and Jaisen Davram Asha'man married and bonded that day, but the night lead to something completely different. Father still denies it, and hereafter as will I, that mother danced the sa'sara for him. Although almost all evidence of this myth has been lost, including the location of the so-called Sa'sara Room. The only possible credibility I can add is that of a certain music ter'angreal in the store room. Rumor has it that the necklace ter'angreal which caused our conception was also the cause of a sudden upspring of several pregnancies shortly following ours. Rumor also has it that this ter'angreal is still in the Tower somewhere, and still missing from the storeroom to the dismay of the Indigos.
Kader and I were born exactly nine months following the wedding on an early fall afternoon. We were the first children born in the Grey Tower, and although Father had had Kayla with his first wife, we were also the first and only children of our parent's marriage. Mother was head of her Ajah and Mistress of the Novices and Soldiers, so sadly after we had passed infancy she was pressed to return to work. Although mother and father always cared for us when they returned home, we were given into the daily care of mother's own nursemaid, Ilya. For three years we lived as a family in the Tower. A few children grew up with us, but the Tower was still quite bare of young children as it is today. I think that there could have been many more children had so many people not died in the Tower's fall.
I can only conclude based on her last message that mother had a prophecy dream three years after I was born about our family's future. She was very upset to send us all away to Whitebridge, but more scared of our future if we were to stay when she knew the Tower would fall. She must have known that she could not change her future, and it scared her. Whitebridge was the best option, she had grown up there. This was the first of the few slight changes she made in preparation for prophecy. The second was a new weave she developed, the third was hiding all of the ter'angreals she knew would either be taken from her or lost with the fall of the Tower. The last preparation she made was securing father's life; but that could only be done just before fate could take its hold on her.
Father didn't know. He was a Blue Asha'man, her Warder, and her husband; but from what he has told me, he had no knowledge of what she planned to do. I think she kept him in the dark because she knew he would follow her into the Pit of Doom. It has made my life both very difficult and much easier that he was spared from her fate. But I know she made that choice for the same reasons that sent my siblings and I to Whitebridge.
It is during this time when she worked on a way to be here for our family without being physically present. Among other talents, she could make ter'angreal, but this was an even newer kind of power object. She took one of the larger moonstones from her hair and wove her memories inside. It works literally like a second person's memories. When I see something that would otherwise not trigger one of my memories, if mother encountered it then her memory appears in my head as the moonstone glows. It does not work in chronological order, only as people, places, or things "remind" the moonstone of a memory. She may have intended on making more than one stone, or finding a way from keeping two memories flash at once when I see something we have in common. But as the Wheel willed, there wasn't enough time. But despite what could have been improved, I thank the Light every day that she made this extraordinary gift for otherwise I wouldn't be here to tell the story now.
One year after sending us to Whitebridge, she woke knowing this was the day. This memory is very vivid for me because it made a strong impression in her past. She turned to my father that morning and told him that she had had a prophecy dream and that they must get out of the Tower immediately. I think she wanted to tell him everything she had planned and all that was to come, but the time left did not allow her. He pressed her to leave the Tower first and then tell him. She conceded and they fled their chambers with only the clothes on their backs. On their way out of the Tower my parents found Jel'viendha's quarters with her chamber door ajar. When they stepped inside they saw her dead with her own wrists slit. Her blood had dried on the carpet hours before. Even the tree rooted in her quarters had withered and died. I think Jel'viendha knew somehow what was to happen, but I can only theorize. To this day no one knows why the Head of the Green Ajah killed herself on the eve of the Tower's fall. With one long look at her near-sister's corpse, mother thought, This place is already dead. Father slung Jel'viendha's corpse over his shoulder and they ran out of the Tower just as it was crumbling to pieces.
Many people died that day. Ranks from the lowliest kitchen maid to the Amyrlin Seat herself died as the Tower crumbled. Father tells me that Nefaline Sedai was one of the few who escaped, she met with my parents just after the Tower fell. The three of them buried Jel'viendha in Rhuidean. Among other things, mother's last message says that her Sleeping Cat ter'angreal is buried there. If it can indeed be found there, I think that ter'angreal could prove to be as valuable as her memories. But I must return to my story . . .
When the three former members of the Grey Tower arrived in the countryside near Whitebridge, they were met by an army of Whitecloaks. I know that my father's father was involved somehow in their appearance, but I do not know for certain if he was with this army or if they came in his name. I also suspect that Aunt Corrin was there among the ranks. I wouldn't doubt that had Mother been unshielded, she could have escaped the Whitecloaks. Aunt Corrin has been known to be a Black sister since before my parents came to the Grey Tower. She had always attempted to turn Mother to the Shadow and was one of the main threats to my siblings and I as we lived unprotected in Whitebridge; yet another reason why Mother and Father hurried to defend us. But enough what-ifs. Father tells me that he opened a gateway to escape and return later for us. Mother, however, made no move to leave. Instead she passed Father's bond to Nefaline and pressed the moonstone into his hand. He says that her last words to him were that I receive the moonstone, and that it was crucial to the survival of the family. Then she pushed him through the gateway, Neflaine shortly followed.
That was the last anyone ever saw of Amora Sedai. Father has news now that she has been with the Seanchan all of these years. But no one knows what ship, what sea, or under who's leash. I've vowed to find her once I'm raised to Aes Sedai.
I was only four years old on that day, but I remember it clearly. Grandma Liah had dressed us up for our parents' arrival. I remember Kayla, in her little white silk gown, asking every few minutes when father and mother were coming to take us back to the Grey Tower. I recall playing with a fabric doll on the parlor floor as Kader tormented Kayla. He teased her out of his own fear with taunts that we would never see our parents again. But despite his taunts, Kayla would ask "Where is father?" with a small, scared voice. Grandfather Telam told us to wait and that it wouldn't be long. He said "It won't be long" every time Kayla asked but with each reassurance, doubt crept further into his voice. I waddled over to the windowseat and with my toddler hands I touched the window that separated me from the countryside where my mother was dragged away by Whitecloaks. Something in me was born at that moment. It caused me to rebel against my grandparents and all of their noble ways, to use mother's memories to seek the Tower and find father once again, and to choose the shawl of the Green. Unlike my mother, there is a storm that brews within me. It reflected the storm I called when I discovered father loved someone else, and it mirrored the Balefire I used in the Three Arches. It is this fire encased in stone that defines me.
Ironically, Kader had been right. Mother never came, and it was many weeks before I saw Father. With the moonstone strung on a silver lace, he came and hugged his children. Father hung the stone around my neck and made me promise to always keep it. He kissed me on the forehead and left to join Nefaline in rebuilding the Grey Tower. I rarely saw him in the years that followed.
Grandmother and Grandfather raised us as they had their own children. This time, however, they raised us with hatred towards Aes Sedai and fear of Asha'men. They taught us to act like little noble adults who would carry on the lineage. They accepted Kayla as their own and ignored her origin as best they could manage. They raised Kader as the son they had never had, a prince of their minor house. And I . . . they were always afraid that I would grow up like mother. Grandfather would point to the marks of her throwing knives on the door, he forbid me to approach boys or Aes Sedai, and only with reluctance did he let me learn how to ride a horse. Instead I was told to focus on dinners, balls, tutoring in the Old Tongue, Daes Dae'mar, dancing, and history. They kept us at a polite distance from the outside world at all times. Always they watched and warned us of the Aes Sedai who took mother and Aunt Corrin away. Grandma Liah, with venom, told us of stories of mad Asha'man breaking the world and Aes Sedai with nations under their thumbs. She gently but firmly called father a madman. Kayla cried when they said those things. She remembered the Tower better than any of us. I was quiet, especially on the days when I planned to run away. That fire within me brewed when I felt especially trapped.
I was seven years old the first time I ran away from my Grandparents' estate. On Kayla's thirteenth naming day she received a letter from father with the promise that he would visit us within a few days. But Grandma Liah's teeth set on edge. She looked to Grandfather and back at us and with fire in her eyes, told us that our madman of a father would not set foot in her house again. Her hatred for the man she believed caused Mother's death had been mounting over the years. Kayla cried, Kader fumed, and I grew quiet. When no one was looking I slipped out of a servant's entrance and ran into the streets of Whitebridge. I ran through the allies, past the shops and houses, and over the hills where I remembered the battle that took my parents away. I cried my father's name in the hopes that somewhere out in the grass he had been waiting, shut out by my grandparents. But father did not call back, only the sound of the river and the wind through the grass returned my cries. Not long after I had disappeared, the entire adult en'Damier household spread out in search for me. Kader found a small gray horse and rode out of the city while everyone combed Whitebridge. Kader parted from their search and found me in the countryside not far out into the hills. He dismounted, and hugged me in silence. It was the only time I remember seeing him cry. He took my hand and led me back to the horse, we climbed atop and rode back to the city as the sun set. When our grandparents returned home, they found us playing Jain Farstrider as if nothing had happened. Kader was always who saved me because he knew where to look and why I ran. We were our own shadows. We knew each-other better than anyone else under the Light. And yet, he was always the responsible one. Instead of running and rebelling, he faced our grandparents and absorbed all they had to teach. That was his way. But he still understood why I ran and sympathized so much that he felt it was his duty to save me. Every time I ran away, it was Kader who brought me back. He was the only one who could.
I grew older. I found other ways to find joy and vent my anger. I picked up dancing among other things. It was the one quality that my grandparents were glad I had inherited from my mother. Although I resisted learning the Old Tongue like Carhein avoid Aiel, Kader picked it up like he would any ordinary book. Kayla in turn developed a knack for healing which was renowned through Whitebridge, she was always the soft-hearted of us three. We developed our talents by means of coping with the household we were members of, and even I picked up habits attributed only to nobles. Despite my private rebellion, I've been criticized to spend too much on luxuries for example. I also admit that I prefer silks to cotton breeches or riding skirts. Lastly, I feel obligated to wear my hair up like all women of my family, unless I'm in the presence of the man I intend to marry or family members.
The only other joy I found aside from my approved hobbies, was Ilya's counter to my grandparent's snide comments about our parents. She told us of our parents' adventures, of the Grey Tower, and the virtues of their struggles. Her stories were true, so I've verified. By day Grandfather Telam lectured us on the evils of Aes Sedai, but by night Ilya secretly reminded us of the good our parents brought to the world. She admired them I think, especially their conflict with the Whitecloaks. Something crept into her voice when she mentioned the Children of the Light. I think they must have played a part in her flee from Camlyen to work for my grandparents. She spoke of my mother as if she her own daughter, with pride not scorn. I absorbed everything she told us like a sponge soaks up water. But by my fifteenth year, over a decade since I'd been sent to Whitebridge, the ritual changed. I was too old to hear bedtime stories, and yet I had taken to wearing mother's stone on my forehead. There was a long period of time when I concentrated on other things and came close to becoming the young lady my grandparents had pushed me to be. But there was one day when an lady of a higher complimented me on my skills for dance. "You dance like your mother used to." She told me at the ball, speaking as if it were the highest of compliments. I thanked her, and later that night I asked Ilya to tell me again about mother. I was hoping I could find some clue of who I was. Ilya shrugged me off, told me that I was too old for stories. I pressed her, and she gave in. She began to speak as she bushed my hair late into the night.
"Jaisen fell in love with your mother as they danced. They had only met that morning in the White Tower and he took her to a local inn. By the end of that night, they were promised." She spoke softly.
I felt a euphoric rush, almost as if a sun beam warmed my entire body if for only a moment. Mother's moonstone glowed a warm blue as if opening and closing of an eye. I spoke in fond remembrance, "Yes, I remember how on our return Jel'viendha had painted a picture of a bridal wreath! I was so angry I painted her and threw her out of the room . . ." My mouth shut abruptly. What am I saying?
Ilya's hand stopped in mid-brush. She frowned, most perplexed. "Light and the Creator, child! These stories have gone to your head. You speak as if you were there."
I turned to her and with confidence I spoke, meeting her eye-to-eye. "I was there . . somehow. I remember. I remember how he saved my life after the Three Arches, he stuck my knife in the wall as a reminder . . ." I trailed off as the memory faded. I frowned then as well, trying to recall the memories on the tip of my tongue.
Ilya looked at me as if I'd grown Trolloc horns. After a long pause she spoke, placing the brush down on the armoire. "I think you had better go to bed child. No more stories." I bit my lip, trying the hold back the tears of frustration. I crawled into bed obediently. Ilya shut the door and after a pause, her footsteps drifted down the hallway. The memories of my father as a young man tumbled through my head, rolled over and over as I tried to recall what happened. But nothing came. I slept eventually, 'though my life was forever changed.
Memories that were not mine came more frequently after that night. And every time I remembered and experience I'd never had, I felt the same warmth through my whole body. Every time mother's stone glowed soft blue. Fragments of a different life flashed through my head and began to group themselves into larger pieces. It did not take me long to realize they were mother's. When I approached Ilya about these daydreams, she denied any knowledge. I think father had told her, but she felt it too dangerous to confirm my belief. Our house was the only one she had known since she was a young lady; to directly undermine my grandparents would mean the loss of her home and eventually death. It was only four months after mother's moonstone was activated when she told me the truth. Ilya lay on her deathbed, weakly clasping my hand. The roots Kayla had made into soup had numbed the pain but nothing could be done for 81 year old woman. She told me then, because she had nothing to loose and knew something of the dangers I faced. She knew that if I didn't seek training, my gift would eventually kill me. It was the same reason she had helped mother escape that house over thirty years before.
Through lips that could barely part, she told me the last piece I needed to fulfill my destiny. "Child. Your father told me that before your mother died, she made that stone for you. She intended that you know the moment you had the gift to channel. Those are her memories inside that stone. Use them to seek training at the Grey Tower. If you stay in this house among your blinded grandparents, you will die." She gasped for breath. "Find everything you can in this house to awaken her memories. And for Light's sake be careful. The life of an Aes Sedai is very dangerous." She coughed up blood. Saphire held a bowl out for her nurse with tears welling in her eyes. Ilya recovered her speech and continued. "You were never meant to stay here child. Make a promise to a dying woman: find your father, find what happened to your mother, promise me you will save yourself." I took her hand and swore to follow her advice. As the only parent I ever really knew wasted away, I searched the house for mother's things. I eventually pieced together enough to find my way to the Grey Tower. When I emerged from my search, my eyes passed over the faces of my siblings. I considered inviting Kayla and Kader, but Kayla had never channeled and she was already past twenty years. And Kader . . . light I wish I had asked him to come. I guessed that he felt too much duty to pick up and run from our grandparents. Ilya died that night. When the lights grew dark in the estate, and my family had long gone to bed, I left my childhood behind. I ran away for the last time, past the streets and shops, past the hills where the Whitecloaks had marched over a decade before, and over the bridge of white for which my city was named. I ran like I had in childhood, but this time with direction. But this time . . . this time Kader never found me. I must have run too far.
(to be continued)
- Aes Sedai of the Green Ajah
- Sitter of the Green Ajah (first term)
- Sitter of the Green Ajah (first term)
- Warder-Channeller Representative (July 2001)