Aes Sedai of the Blue Ajah
Rikela is an Aes Sedai and former Sitter for the Blue Ajah. She spent many years trapped by a ter’angreal, only able to access the world through Tel’aran’rhiod. As a result of this she is one of the most talented dreamwalkers of her Age, and was instrumental in Arikan’s defeat during the Battle of Tar Valon. She is a mysterious figure, and was fiercely loyal to Kaydrienne, the former Amyrlin. Her current whereabouts are unknown.
The Lady Reialore
Rikela was born into the illustrious Mayene court, where she grew up in wealth and privilege. Though it was a closely guarded secret, due to the proximity and fractious relationship with neighbouring Tear, the ruling Firsts of the city-state had long enjoyed a close alliance with the White Tower of Tar Valon. As such, Rikela was identified as a channeler early; before she even had the chance to Spark, and it was in the safety of the Tower that she first learned to embrace the One Power.
She was a refined and easy student, with gracious and courtly manners, and she settled into her new life easily. She showed a natural aptitude for saidar, spending much of her free time exploring it on her own (the only rule she routinely broke), and promised to one day be of exceptional strength. She rarely indulged in pranks or misbehaved, and her generally exemplary conduct meant she was rarely caught or punished for any misdemeanours she did indulge, those times usually at the behest of her friends.
It wasn’t until she was an Accepted that she discovered a strange talent; an ability to enter the World of Dreams. In those days it was a vastly unknown gift, with few Aes Sedai actually having any knowledge let alone expertise. She received lessons from Corele Taravin, a young Aes Sedai of the Blue Ajah, who had self-taught herself many years before. Rikela was shown enough to keep herself safe, but given she was still an initiate, albeit one who had by now earned the Ring, she was instructed never to enter the Dream without permission.
Aes Sedai of the Blue Ajah
Rikela knew many years prior her raising that she would choose the Blue Ajah. As a young Sister she advised monarchs and travelled the known world, becoming a prominent member of the Ajah’s Eyes and Ears network. In what little time she spent time in the Tower she discovered a surprising friendship with her mentor Corele Taravin, sparked first by their shared talent in the dreamworld, and solidified by their shared Ajah. They found much more common ground between them, both having grown up shaped by the rigours of court life.
Rikela’s cause was both simple and wildly ambitious; to aid the Dragon however she may in order to ready him for the Last Battle, and to buy him time by strengthening the seals keeping the Dark One locked away. In Mayene’s ruling court, and as a close blood-relative of the First, she had long been aware of old rumours; of a twisted archway bartered away 300 hundred years before, which offered transport to a portal world and answers for any brave and shrewd enough to ask the right questions. In both the dream and waking worlds she began chasing these mysteries.
It was during her time of travel that she met and bonded her only Warder, Ottar Hildisvin, nicknamed the Boar for his stubborn and headstrong nature. Rikela was chasing leads at the border between Arad Doman and Saldaea, and it was rare indeed that she ever encountered trouble, for her calm and stately nature usually smoothed any difficulties. Yet this time it came to arms, and he interceded on her behalf. Afterwards he upbraided her for her stupidity. Rikela had never had a man dare tell her what to do in her life, let alone one who would speak so bluntly to an Aes Sedai, which by now he certainly realised she was. When the shock wore off she realised the value in such a companion. Her life would be one of risks, and he offered a voice of reason. When she later asked him to accept her bond, he was surprised, but agreed.
In the years that followed Rikela continued her work with single-minded dedication. She became well versed in myth and obscure prophecy, explored the dream, and experimented with saidar frequently, seeking secrets that might be used to strengthen or repair cuendillar. The methods for making it had long been lost, and Rikela did not uncover them, but she did eventually realise that its strength lay not in any physical property but in its tie to the very Pattern. Thus she solidified her belief that help must come from beyond their world. She came to believe in the existence of a ter’angreal that might facilitate access to a realm that existed beyond, a lesser version of Mayene’s lost archway. From the creatures thought to reside there she hoped to glean answers that might help her quest.
When she discovered the ter’angreal and used it, she was indeed transported to another world. But it was not answers she was offered, but a bargain. Rikela had been born for negotiation and diplomacy, and met the challenge with calm. Her efforts paid off, but it came at a cost. For the extra strength given to the seals of the Dark One’s prison, time would be claimed from Rikela in kind. She accepted, believing that this would simply mean her life became shortened. A worthy sacrifice, even if it killed her outright.
But it was not the way the payment was exacted from her; instead, she was imprisoned. Her bond with Ottar snapped in that very moment. The ter’angreal went quiet and still, then grew cold.
For many years Rikela was believed to be dead.
Time was amorphous while she was trapped, and many years passed. Her memories of this time are hazy and nightmarish; she does not know exactly where she was, or what happened to her. Eventually she was able to assert some sort of control by slipping her consciousness into the World of Dreams, but it was a largely barren landscape. She desperately sought, and failed, to find Corele: to explain what she had done, and what it meant.
Finally, Rikela discovered the Gap. In that blanket of twinkling night, she found the dreams of a young girl: sixteen year old Modane, a Lady of the Court of Mayene. It transpired Rikela had been drawn because Modane was her baby sister, born several years after Rikela had been lost to the world, and the link between them was one of close kin.
She began visiting whenever she could resist the chains binding her. Though surprised at first, Modane accepted the strangeness; she understood who Rikela was, for the Reialores were proud of their lineage and the daughter they had sent to become an Aes Sedai. They’d received compensation for Rikela’s death, and word of her great deeds in service of the Light, thus had always told stories.
Modane was a welcome and soul-saving respite from the deepness of Rikela’s oblivion, and the strange, endless passage of her time. Though she searched the dream regularly, and grew adept in all the years she spent there, she was never able to communicate with another. Soon Modane was discovered to have the Spark, and went to the Tower to learn her gift, much as Rikela had done. In helping her adjust and learn the One Power Rikela found new purpose. She counselled her to say nothing of the visits, unsure how they would be received, and knowing she could not and should not be saved.
Yet unknown to Rikela, when Modane was raised she turned to the Red Ajah in her desire to help. Following saidin’s cleansing the Reds had been given charge of the Tower’s ter’angreal, and it was with this knowledge Modane hoped to save her lost sister, not knowing the bargain she had made or why.
Rikela does not know the details, or what Modane did. She only remembers the pain of being wrenched free, and discovering herself gasping on the floor of the Red’s apartment.
Rikela was finally home.
Sitter for the Ajah
She was out of sorts when she finally returned to the world. Many years had passed, and the Tower was not as she had left it. Sisters had come and gone, and with it the political board had shifted. By now Kaydrienne was Amyrlin Seat, with Corele as her Keeper, and the world had grown steady and secure under the Dragon’s Peace.
So, so much had changed.
Rikela now had a sister she had never met in the flesh, no longer a child but raised to an Aes Sedai of the Red Ajah – and a woman married, too. The Black Tower had begun to blossom from a disparate farmhouse of mad men granted the Dragon’s amnesty, to an organisation in its own right. Saidin had been cleansed. The Red Ajah’s purpose had changed too, its new direction perhaps influenced by Rikela’s own work to repair the seals, and the ter’angreal that enabled her to do it.
Regal, composed, and ever serene, Rikela accepted everything with aplomb, yet inside she struggled. Her life’s work felt complete, and in that knowledge she was adrift. There was guilt, too, in knowing that with her release the seals might begin to degrade once more.
Her Warder, Ottar, driven to madness by the sudden snap of their Bond, had long ago taken a last stand in the Blight, his memory and sacrifice a distant memory even to his own family. So sure of herself, Rikela had never thought to offer him release before she used the ter’angreal. She discovered that he had returned the object to the Tower upon her death, and relayed what he knew of her actions and intentions to Corele before he made the final journey north.
Though she had not felt his death, Rikela grieved deeply; for the loss of her closest companion, for the loss of her old life, and for the loss of her purpose. Her instincts urged her to flight, to seek some new cause out in the world to bury her head in, but in an effort to drive her to new purpose, she was offered and accepted a Seat in the Hall instead.
She served her Ajah faithfully as a Sitter, and diligently directed the running of the Blue’s Eyes and Ears network. She believes wholeheartedly that peace best serves the Dragon’s purpose, and that the world must be united in the face of Tarmon Gaidon, thus remained a staunch and loyal advocate of the Amyrlin and her policies. The two were close, some suspected even closer than Kaydrienne and her Keeper.
Still, Rikela was never quite the same following her experiences. She has never spoken of it fully, not even to her sister.
Siege of Tar Valon
When whispers reached the Dream of a growing threat, Rikela was the first to know. After alerting the Amyrlin and Keeper of her concerns, she began hunting for its source. Months passed with little to show for the search. Yet her fear of the Shadow’s amassing strength came to fruition when an assault was brought right to the Tower’s gates. There was simply no way trollocs should have ever managed to get so close to Tar Valon, let alone within the very walls.
The devastation wrought was sudden and unimaginable. They were deeply unprepared.
It transpired that an Aes Sedai, formerly of the Red Ajah, led the attack in the dreamworld. Alongside Corele, Rikela rushed to form the primary defence against Lairona in Tel’aran’rhiod. Together they fought the Black Sister, until she was finally bested and taken captive. Meanwhile the battle raged on in the waking world: the first time the Tower had been breached in its 3,000 year history.
They interrogated Lairona, and to save her own skin she revealed the dreadlord general who was actually behind the seige. Arikan.
Though hidden away in the Tower, Rikela’s body lay undefended, for she’d never bonded another Warder after Ottar. The battle still raged in the waking world. Corele quickly departed to confront the dreadlord and stop him enacting the rest of his plans. In the same moment, Lairona attempted escape. Ruthless in her reaction, Rikela killed her, though not without taking injury herself. She tried to remain in the Dream, aiming to locate and assist her Sister, but lost consciousness. Corele was successful, and escaped with her life.
Loss and Rebellion
In the interim years, Rikela continued to serve her Ajah in the Hall. By now the art of Travelling had been rediscovered, and she made full use of the ability, as often outside the Tower as within its walls, enacting Kaydrienne’s will and serving her own mysterious ends. From the shadows she shaped the lives of girls she deemed suitable for a Blue shawl, including the wayward Accepted Nythadri Vanditera, who was ultimately persuaded by Lythia Krean to pledge herself Green. A shame and a waste both. Meanwhile she searched for evidence of Arikan’s escape. But if he walked the dream still, their paths did not cross.
When Lennox was lost to the Finn, Rikela counselled Corele to caution, afraid of what the man might have done. She offered to speak to Modane discreetly on Corele’s behalf. The Red agreed to help readily, but whatever had happened to trap Rikela all those years ago, it was not the same thing, and the search continued. She never expected her friend to act so rashly, for it was unlike her to do so. Corele’s death affected Rikela gravely. She feels immense guilt for not doing more to help.
Afterwards, Rikela receded from what little public life she maintained. She was aware of the Tower’s unrest, and advised Kaydrienne to be careful of how her dealings with the Asha’man King of Arad Doman would be perceived. Ultimately, however, the plot and its stakes were too important to fully mitigate the risk. Rikela was one of the few trusted with the knowledge of its true purpose; that Asha’man Daimon had ousted one of the Forsaken when he took the throne, and they hunted for them still, believing they had fled to root themselves firmly amongst the Seanchan and thus beyond reach. Trista, the gaidar “traded” by terms of the treaty, was intended as a spy.
But neither of them could have predicted the events and influences that led to the night of the coup.
Rikela was apprehended and held for the duration of the Hall meeting, and prevented from entering Tel’aran’rhiod. She was not released until after the conclusion of the executions. What Kekura may have intended for her, Rikela did not stay to discover. She escaped the Tower, a trickle of others following in her wake, and has not been seen since.
Appearance and Personaltiy
Rikela is possessed of a mature beauty, with dark hair and eyes. She is the epitome of Aes Sedai serenity and grace, and is a mysterious and solitary figure in the Tower. The death of her closest friends, Corele and Kaydrienne, have furthered her isolation, for they are the last of her companions to recall the woman she was before she became trapped by the ter’angreal. Though she maintains her relationship with her sister, she is aware of the animosity between their Ajahs, inciting the restless rumours that Modane is more loyal to her than the Reds.
Rikela is ambitious and dedicated, fully willing to sacrifice in service of the Light.
Allies and Enemies
- Corele Taravin (deceased)
- Kaydrienne Lindelle (deceased)
- Modane Reialore
- Blue Ajah rebels
- 1st Age: Zhenya Disir, head of a private security company in Moscow, with a dreamwalking daughter she seeks to protect. Currently she is assisting in the establishment of an order of women that will teach girls the One Power.
- 6th Age: Freyja, goddess of love, beauty, fertility, sex, war, gold, and seiðr, and reputed leader of the Valkyries. Freyja directed the peace-keeping forces of Fólkvangr.