When Karl first saw the boy he was to mentor, he saw in those young eyes a bit of himself when he was that age. Sixteen, defiant, reckless - and, above all, unwilling to let his determination to escape be waned by a mere two weeks in solitary confinement. He apparently had a reputation for foolish attempts at escape, this being his fourth attempt at it. Karl had only ever gone as far as harassing a few templars by replacing their lyrium potions with magically-dyed urine, among other pranks and mischief. Still, he was determined to be miserable about his teenaged years in the Circle and to escape that misery however he could. His methods of escape often involved sex, recreational herbs, and abusing templars. Never had he been so desperate as to try to literally escape, but Karl still felt as if he could somehow relate to this blonde-haired runaway. At the very least, he knew he had to try: he was chosen specifically by First Enchanter Irving for the job of mentoring him.
Of all the enchanters in the tower, Karl had no idea why Irving chose him in particular. He wasn’t particularly strict with his apprentices, nor had he ever mentored before. Why give him such a hopeless case when he was new at this? Karl was sure he would leave the kid even more screwed up than the poor lad likely was in the first place. Still, it was his duty, and so it was with a shrug and a resigned sigh that Karl at last introduced himself to the young man with whom he would be spending so much quality time.
“Um, hello there. Karl Thekla. Enchanter Karl Thekla. Nice to meet you, uh, what was your name again? Sorry, I don’t believe I-”
Karl offered his hand for the young blonde to shake, but Anders merely kept his arms crossed in front of him as he glared at his new mentor.
“Erm, well then, Anders, please have a seat. I’ve been informed of your proclivity for... how shall I put it? Taking unauthorized jaunts outside the tower? Is that correct?” Karl said with a bit of a smirk.
Anders merely glared at the enchanter, then said, “I suppose you could put it that way, yes. Listen, I know Irving’s put you up to this, and if you really don’t want to waste your time on me, we could just not and tell him we did, hm? How’s that sound?”
Wow, this kid sure doesn’t mince words, does he? Karl couldn’t help but thinking. I think I like that.
“Listen, Anders, I want to help you. You seem like a very, um, nice young man and all and I’d rather not see anything bad happen to you should you attempt another little stroll outside, okay?”
“Oh, like you’d really care. Nobody in this damn tower actually cares about me, so quit pretending. Now, if we’re finished, I’d like to return to my dorm and sleep in what passes for a proper bed around here since I’ve been sleeping on a dungeon floor for two weeks. Thank you, Enchanter, Ser,” Anders stated quickly and abruptly as he stood, turned around, and left their meeting with a brisk stride and his head held high.
Karl rubbed his temples as he felt a slight tension headache coming on. He knew this was going to be hard, but he hadn’t ever imagined it would be this difficult. Anders acted strong, and he indeed must be to have come out of two weeks in solitary in such excellent shape, but Karl would tell something was wrong with him. Obviously, something would have to be wrong with anyone who would try, and fail, to escape a tower built in the middle of a gigantic lake four times and still look as determined as ever to try it again. Still, he had an inkling that whatever it was, it would require him to get closer to the lanky blonde teen before he’d ever find out.
It was a challenge the good enchanter decided he might as well take on with a little enthusiasm, anyway. If not for Anders’ sake, then for his own, anyway.