Kylin seemed like a serious young man, weighing his words carefully even though the topic was harmless and there were no wrong answers at this point. Eager to impress, nervous and trying to hide it, or just genuinely humourless? It was difficult to tell. Either way, Jaren smiled at the Soldier. “That is correct,” he said, “to a point. Hiding the Ward or not depends on the purpose of the Ward, and of course hiding it from other channellers of the same gender requires using inverted weaves. For example a ward to keep insects out generally wouldn’t need to be hidden.” Or at least he couldn’t think of any reason.
“Like you said,” he went on, “Wards can be placed around an object or a space, or even a person. Many channellers find it easier to attach the Ward to physical structures, like the walls of a room, but they can be placed anywhere. And their purpose is, indeed, most commonly to keep something in or out, to protect or to confine… but also other things. The most common Ward against intrusion, for example, isn’t meant to keep intruders out, but simply to warn the channeller when somebody enters the Warded area or touches the Warded object.” That in itself could be deterrent enough for some intruders.
There were Wards that could keep people out altogether — or in; during Ravak Darrow’s misguided inquisition, Jaryd had been ordered to lock the learning ranks inside the Novices’ and Soldiers’ quarters — but they were far more complex than what this lesson would cover, requiring more Power and more than a little Talent to be functional. From a purely academic point of view, Jaren wished he’d been there to see that Ward, though from everything else he’d heard from people who had been in the Tower at the time, he was probably lucky that he’d been away at the Citadel, the siege notwithstanding…
“Some of the most common Wards used in everyday life,” Jaren continued, “are ones against sound. The basic version blocks sound both ways, but a little variation will give you one that blocks sound going out while allowing sounds from the outside to come in.”
He seized saidin and wove fine threads of Spirit into a net in the shape of a dome around himself, then laced in threads of Air, working slowly so that the Soldier could see what he was doing. “When I finish the weave, you won’t be able to hear me speak,” he said. Then he pulled the flows tight, bringing the Ward together. “There we go,” he said into the echoing silence of the Ward. Then he let the Ward dissolve again. “You try that, now.”