• Closed • The First Steps in a Thousand Arcs

The Vault Thread #1: Floor 1, Room 1

From Tried's Mouth to the mysterious Tower, the waters around Scalvoris and the island itself hold a vast array of secrets, just ripe for discovery. Here are landmarks and small villages of note, dotted in and around the island itself.

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The First Steps in a Thousand Arcs

Postby Aegis » Sun Apr 15, 2018 7:50 pm

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The runes flowed freely as Amaris took them down on their paper. As they tore their gaze away, to go toward the shop, the runes on the paper shifted into Common, "Welcome Amaris, child of Yanis and Lorin." But those words were unnoticed, for the moment.

As Sephira tapped into the vibrations of the room, she would find herself in a sea of overwhelming bombardment of sense Sephira didn't have. Alien, foreign, she was in a rampaging ocean of frequencies she couldn't understand. These frequencies came from everything around the mage, everything here was interwoven with these incredibly complex notes. It could take a thousand lifetimes to attempt to decipher them all.

But one frequency rang through heavily, for it was the only one that Sephira could "hear". And it was beautiful. And while it didn't give her the clearest of picture or knowledge, she would be able to glean that she was still on Scalvoris. It was hard to tell for her just how she knew, but she did nonetheless. A breath of a whisper on the back of her neck, or perhaps instinct, or her heart telling her. They were still on Scalvoris. And Sephira's Attunement spark was in love. All of these unknown sensations washing through it. It was intimidated but mostly overjoyed. And it yearned to be awash in this for eternity. And it would be very reluctant to be pulled away from these.

The door was opened to Amaris and Rowan by a "man". He was smiling at them, and appeared to be made entirely of finely crafted, polished, and stained wood. "Welcome welcome! Come on in! I haven't had customers in so very long! I am Charlie, Charlie Barkley and this is my shop!" He turned and walked into his shop, heading straight for the counter. "Do come in, I know you'll find something you'll love."

Charlie went about preparing something on the counter with his back to the door, allowing them entry, to explore the single room shop that was filled to the brim with wooden toys and carvings and statuettes. Everything was made of wood, of course, though with so many different types and grains and colorings. A paradise for a true woodworker, and the skill level was unparalleled. Charlie turned around, with a tray in hand, three steaming cups of tea, "One for the handsome gentleman, one for the fascinatingly tall beauty, and one for your..." he could be seen looking at Sephira outside the shop, who was busy with her attuning, "Friend. I do apologize though, I do not have any milk or sugar to accompany, the delivery man has not been by in a long while. My friends grow the tea somewhere, and bring it to me though. So kind they are. Please feel free to look around, and yes, you may touch the items, but do be careful. I will insist that anything you break must be paid for."

Of the many ships, animals, puzzles, sculptures and other such toys, there were only three things around the shop not carved from wood. The first was a large, impressive ship, not carved of wood, but appeared to be made of bones. It was beautiful, in an eerie way, and ornate, with a price tag of 20,000 GN in front of it, it sat prominently among the many other ships that were carved. On the wall near the door was a rather plain glass mirror. And then finally, over near the window, a glass orb, that shone of every imaginable color in its core.


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The First Steps in a Thousand Arcs

Postby Rowan » Thu Apr 19, 2018 5:50 pm

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Upon reaching the toy shop, Rowan discovered that what he'd thought was in fact dead wrong. Whatever this eh... gentleman was, it wasn't human or like anything that he'd ever seen before. He appeared to have been crafted in the same manner of the objects that he had for sale. If he hadn't seen him move then he would have thought that he was an uncannily made piece, given a shocking semblance of life. Instead, he found himself grinning a little uncertainly, unsure what to make of the wooden being as he had no frame of reference. He did his best to ignore his unusual nature, deciding that it wasn't his place to pass judgement on the appearance of others. Still, it didn't stop him snorting with laughter when the man announced his second name as 'Barkley'. He coughed abruptly, trying to hide his mirth.

"Well uh... hi there, Charlie. It's a lovely place you've got here. Eh... little out of the way but yeah, glad we found it," the blond told the shop owner when he'd recovered himself after a few moments. Glancing around himself, he discovered that there were a great many items indeed crammed into the relatively small space. The young man didn't know much about woodwork. He'd seen many ships of course, but they were usually concerned with function rather than pretty form. Not that a great deal of skill didn't go into it and some shipwrights did like to carve various designs into their work. Still, what he'd seen before was nothing compared to this and as he gazed around him, he could certainly appreciate the craft of a true master.

"Is this all your own work?" he asked. "It's stunning, truly."

He accepted the cup of tea offered to him with a grateful nod, pressing his lips together to keep them from twisting in distaste. Rowan didn't like black tea but that didn't mean that he wouldn't drink it, he just wouldn't be particularly happy about it. He followed Charlie's glance to where Sephira stood outside, seemingly lost in a daze. He knew that she was a mage but he had no idea what she could do; it might well be related to the arcane but he wouldn't know without asking her. Although his eyes lingered on her, a slight frown on his face, he listened intently to what their host had to say.

"Your friends? Do they... uh... come here often? I only ask because as I said, you're a little out of the way here, we were lucky to find you. Do your friends live near here?" the blond asked, wondering if the man might unknowingly provide them with the means of getting out of this place. As things stood right now, it didn't seem as if there was a ready exit from this odd cavern.

He tried to sip his tea, found it too hot and thus set it down again. "I don't suppose that I could trouble you for a drop of cold water, could I? Just to cool this down a little? No worries if not, I'll have a look around." He did just that, moving around the shop, reaching out a hesitant hand to lightly touch a little ship, a perfect version of many of the ones he'd seen; it looked as if it would sail quite well. He moved on from it, not really caring to relive things from his past. Still, his eyes went to another one, larger this time and not wooden. He found himself moving closer, drawn to it as he tried to determine what it was. It didn't look like wood but it was pale and it had an odd-

By Syroa, it was bone!

He approached it with greater caution, a morbid fascination remaining even when he caught sight of the price tag. he was careful not to touch it, going so far as to step away from it a pace or two so he wouldn't inadvertently tip off it. "Bizarre," he murmured. "What do you make of this, Amaris? Pretty but... uh... a bit... macabre. Too rich for my blood though," he joked, moving away from it but finding himself throwing a glance back to it even as he walked to the window. He peered out at the unusual scene, not able to reconcile the fact of a shop within a cavern. His eyes moved down though, drawn by the glass orb that shone with so many colours. He stood, mesmerised by it as he peered into its core, unconsciously leaning closer.
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The First Steps in a Thousand Arcs

Postby Amaris » Thu Apr 19, 2018 7:28 pm

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- common / murnasian

Amaris had intended to pull out the sheet of runes to ask the gentleman if he might know what they meant. They had every intention to until they saw him, brows raised and mouth slightly agape before they blinked and attempted to compose themselves again. Charlie, as the….man introduced himself as, went about making them drinks. The mixed blood found it was then that they might get the chance to ask about the runes.

However, they didn’t much look like runes now - they could read it. How this had happened baffled them further, considering the Common in front of them had welcomed them by name and their parents. They drew in a breath, looking to the man. Friends? “Sorry to interrupt, sir, but the runes. Would you happen to know what language they are and who wrote them?” They accept their drink graciously as they awaited his answer, though did not take a sip before they turned their attention to the wares Charlie had spoken of.

Rowan was already ahead of them, staring at a ship. They drew close enough to see what he was talking about, and was more than ready to move on. “Much the same for me.” They turned instead to look at the mirror on the wall for a moment, staring at their reflection before the orb caught their attention.

The colors were certainly something else and curiosity piqued, they observed it for a moment before cautiously turning over in its little stand.
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The First Steps in a Thousand Arcs

Postby Sephira » Wed Apr 25, 2018 1:51 pm

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The notes were everywhere; it was as if everything else around her fell back into an abyss, totally overpowered by the deluge of frequencies. It was a sea of foreign impressions and feelings that Sephira had no reference point for. Like an ant trying to fathom the acts and thoughts of a god. The mage felt so small and insignificant in the downpour of notes. They prickled against her consciousness, demanding her attention one after another. Instinctually she slapped her hands to her ears, as if somehow this would block out the frequencies that were assailing her.

Finally out of the storm of notes something pure emerged, something she could latch onto like a raft to keep herself afloat. Sephira took a deep breath to calm herself, her hands finally relaxing and falling slack at her sides. The note was exquisite and her Attunement spark was absolutely obsessed with it. Like a bird fawning over a sparkly piece of jewelry, the spark just wouldn’t release the frequency. The mage struggled to regain control while getting muted impressions that they were indeed still on Scalvoris. It was only the barest hint that they were indeed on the island, like a distant call over the waves, but it was there. Sephira had at least learned something. They had not been transported, at least not so far as to have left Scalvoris. After a great deal of effort the mage managed to rip her spark away from the frequency, leading her to stumble a few steps before regaining her balance.

Sephira regained her composure after a couple trills, shrugging off the experience to rejoin the others that had moved inside the store. Her eyes swirled with hues of silver, blue and brown as she looked toward Rowan, her eyes meeting his. Their encounters thus far had been rocky to say the least, but she at least hoped that she could trust him. The woman had trained with Amaris in the past, so at least she had some faith that the councilwoman would have her back.

“We are still on Scalvoris, somehow.” She said lowly to both her companions before fixing her attention on their ever so gracious host. He was strange to say the very least, and nothing like the mage had ever seen before. Her brow arched faintly at his appearance before mutely taking the third cup of tea.

“We appreciate your hospitality.” The mage said politely, raising the cup slightly before taking a long draught of the bitter tea. Drinking bland sugarless beverage was something she was accustomed to, many Elements drank their tea black and Sephira was no different.

Moving through the store she came to stand beside Rowan as he finished exclaiming that the ship was made of bone, rather than wood, as she might have expected.

“This is all a little odd.” She whispered to the blonde man, her voice deeply cynical and sharp. “One trill we are on a mountainside and the next we are in a shop where the proprietor is offering us tea...oh and by the way, he’s made of wood!” Sarcasm dripped from her words, and a slight hint of frantic paranoia.

Sephira’s eyes narrowed once she finished and she stalked off, brushing past Amaris, and moving toward the mirror. The mage stared at her reflection, caught off guard for a moment at the image of herself. It had been so long since she had seen herself as more than an Element. Her identity was fused with her role in the military, with her identity as a mage. To simply see herself in non-descript leather armor, with no Flame Pin and her hair braided back rather than down; she looked like a stranger, like a different woman. It was unnerving, like she had left some core part of herself behind at Element’s Hall. Who was she, once all her military trappings stripped away?



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The First Steps in a Thousand Arcs

Postby Aegis » Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:32 pm

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Charlie smiled at Rowan, "I am so glad you think so, good sir! And you are right, it is a bit out of the way these days. Wasn't always this way. I remember when I had many visitors per trial. I could barely keep my shelves stocked back then. And I was just a lowly apprentice."

He looked over as Amaris approached with a question. His face was taken aback, shock evident. His eyes dipped curiously, "What a peculiar question since you of all people know who wrote them. I don't know the name of the language, that knowledge died along with the rest of them."

Charlie meandered around with them, a watchful shepherd over this new flock. But his blocky shoulders slumped, "Most of them are mine. Some of the finer pieces belong to my master. She made my body, taught me her craft. But she's gone now... just like everyone else. And here I am, just an echo of her former glory." The awkward silence lingered far too long for anyone to be comfortable before he continued, "My friends aren't able to visit as much as I like. I don't know where they live. They never speak. They only bring me things."

He turned away from the group, moving back toward his counter before he stiffened up at Rowan's next words. His voice changed, sounded deeper, scratchy, "You'll have plenty of water to drink soon!" His body then relaxed and he continued, his voice back to normal. "But of course sir, give me one moment to pop in back, the river flows through my workshop. Cleanest water you could hope for, and tastes just as I would imagine falling in love would taste." He disappeared into the back to fetch Rowan's water.

As Sephira looked upon herself, musing over her identity, there was a moment where the reflection seemed... off. The slightest twinge, or lack of movement. Just enough to make her eyes suspicious, but unable to confirm anything actually happened. Then simultaneously, her reflected lips twisted into the slightest of smirks, before the reflection's hand, her hand shot of the mirror, snatching at her. Sephira's reflexes would be fast enough to dodge the attack, but not entirely, as the reflected version of herself got a hold of some of her hair, and ripped it from her head, before the arm retreated back into the mirror. Behind the glass, the reflected Sephira was sniffing at the hair she'd tore out, and then began rubbing it against her face, much like a cat would rub against its owner's leg, smiling in ecstasy.

Meanwhile, across the room, Amaris and Rowan were staring into the kaleidoscopic glass orb and it shimmered and shifted with the subtleties of their angles, showing more and more colors. Until Amaris touched it. It flared a bright, blinding white, disabling the pair temporarily, only a trill or five. As they recovered, they would see colorful spots in their vision for a moment before their eyes would show them a much different world. A much... larger world. The table the orb sat upon, that stood at waist height for Rowan earlier, now appeared to be several stories above him. The ceiling was so distant now that it blurred into obscurity. The smaller Sephira was now a giant.

They had shrunk.

Rowan stood a mere 1 inch, while Amaris stood 1.5, of course. Charlie returned through the door from his workshop, cup in hand, "Here you... " Turning toward Sephira, "Where did your friends go?" He then saw Sephira's reflection in its state, "Careful with that one. She's handsy."

To Amaris and Rowan, his simple speech was booming thunder, that could be deciphered if they tried really hard. Down on the floor, or rather, much lower on the floor now, they could see more intricacies in the shop. Even underneath the table the glass orb sat upon, were beautiful engravings. The floorboards hand etched, the legs of the table adorned with leaves of wood, the mouse hole in the corner tucked right in behind a shelf, just out of sight of anyone full sized. Charlie began walking toward where the pair had been, his foot steps loud and menacing, "Such a shame they couldn't stick around. They were so nice."

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The First Steps in a Thousand Arcs

Postby Rowan » Fri Apr 27, 2018 7:19 pm

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Charlie seemed nice but he still unsettled the young man for reasons that Rowan couldn't quite put his finger on. The wooden man had been welcoming from the moment they'd walked in, providing them with tea and making conversation. He was obliging, willing to answer the questions that the blond put to him. He was able to glean some interesting pieces of information indeed, eyeing Charlie with new interest as he discovered that his former mistress had actually made him. He wondered what it took for someone to be able to create such a thing. After all Barkley didn't have a mere appearance of life - he'd seen puppets that looked uncannily so before - but seemed to be quite sentient. Not only was he carrying on a conversation and making cups of tea but if he was to be believed - and why not? - then he had also produced much of the shop's contents. The young man knew very little about magic, only properly encountering it since he'd come to Scalvoris, but he assumed that it was behind Charlie's existence.

It wasn't until he mentioned water that he noticed a change in the wooden shopkeeper, the alteration in his voice, sending icy fingertips dancing along his spine, something in him wanting to recoil from Charlie, far away from him. A moment later, his voice had returned to normal and that made it even worse. He felt that for a moment, he'd seen the real Charlie, the part that he had sensed intuitively as wrong. The fact that it was gone now, hidden once more under his sunny disposition, made him all the more wary. Hence as he made to move around the shop, he found himself casting furtive little glances back towards him, waiting for him to make a reappearance and nervous about what would happen when the shop owner returned.

Still, he allowed himself to get momentarily distracted by the pretty orb, glancing away at the moment that Amaris reached out to touch it, only catching sight of it from the corner of his eye.

"Wait, Amaris! That looks frag-" His protest cut off as the world became overly bright, letting loose a low cry of pain, hands jerking to his face as he ground his palms into his eyes. "By Syroa! I tried to tell you not... to... touch... it. Fuck! By the Fates is this real?" he gasped, gazing around at the altered scene. At first, he couldn't process what he was seeing but then he saw Sephira - gigantic and towering over them both - and the rest of it fell into place. They'd shrunk. He didn't know how the orb had done it but he knew that it was that infernal thing. Not that he could see it anymore, the tabletop that it sat on high above him now.

He waved his arms about his head, having a small frustrated tantrum before he threw his gaze heavenwards, staring at the underside of the table, silently fuming as he wondered how the situation could be rectified. He could see the craft that had gone into everything but he didn't care about the prettiness of everything around him, not when he was an inch tall and had other concerns. For one thing, he didn't think that they would get Sephira's attention, doubting that their voices would carry or that anything they did would catch her eye. Thus, he was looking for something, anything in the environment that they could use, spotting the mouse hole moments before Charlie reappeared, basically stomping across the floor to them, or so it seemed to Rowan.

He made a desperate clutch at his companion's arm, wanting to drag them with him, to get them away from the danger that couldn't be stopped. If there was no way to halt the man's approach then they would simply have to avoid it.

"Amaris, run! Come with me, this way, quick!" he roared at the mixed blood, setting off at a run towards the mouse hole. He pumped his legs, arms swinging at his sides as he put as much speed and energy into his desperate sprint as he quite literally ran for his life. His heart pounded, air whistling rapidly in and out of his lungs and although the muscles in his body screamed, the adrenaline pumping through his blood vessels was enough to keep him going. He wanted to live, he really wanted to live and so he was going to do everything he could to get to safety. The problem was that if he got there and Amaris wasn't with him, he'd be too willing to go back and help them, his self-preservation strong but mind unwilling to allow them to come to harm. They had supported him, they were his friend and he didn't have many of those. He'd come at their behest and gods damn him, he was going to have their back even if it killed him. All he could do was hope that such a thing didn't happen; it hadn't thus far and life certainly hadn't been kind.
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The First Steps in a Thousand Arcs

Postby Sephira » Mon May 07, 2018 9:45 am

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When Charlie’s voice shifted Sephira barely noticed as she was enthralled by the gleaming surface of the mirror. Her reflection had moved...somehow it had moved freely of her own movements. It must have been a trick of the light or perhaps the mirror was not what it seemed. The mage was not given the chance to consider the nature of her reflection for long as suddenly her reflection smirked before her hand shot through the mirror to grab at Sephira. Purely on instinct she dropped to the floor to roll away, but she was not quite fast enough. Her reflection snatched a few strands of hair from her head before retracting her hand back inside the mirror. Sephira snapped to her feet, her hand on her sheathed saber as she stared at the women in the mirror. Her face was aghast, as if trying to make sense of what had just happened.

At that moment a flash of light erupted in the corner of the mage’s eye. She had only lost contact with her companions for a few trills, but in that time they seemed to have vanished. Sephira turned almost dizzily on her heel toward the direction of the flash just as Charlie made a comment about the reflection in the mirror and the fact that her two companions were gone.

The Element turned her head, looking at her reflection with wariness; her twin was rubbing the hair she had taken on her face, like she was more feline than human. It was unnerving and sent a shiver down her spine. Sephira stared at the place the light had originated from, trying to work out where they could have gone.

“Rowan, Amaris!” She called sharply, hoping for a moment that they had only stepped outside and that they would pop back in at any moment. When that didn’t happen, a cold sinking feeling took hold in her gut. Something was very wrong.

Sephira turned toward the wooden man, a dangerous look glimmering in her eyes as she took a few steps toward him.
“Where are they? What happened to them” She said darkly over the dozens of wooden statuettes, her right hand resting firmly on the hilt of Wyvern. “And what is that in the mirror?”

Suddenly it felt very much like the three of them had walked into the den of a predator. It was like a spider’s web, but they hadn’t seen the strings until just now. Was this an illusion? Was the proprietor Charlie pretending to be something he was not? If he did have ill intent, how long would he go before revealing himself? There was something about his voice from earlier, something dark and twisted that she had ignored because the reflection in the mirror had absorbed her attention.

Sephira silently scolded herself for not keeping better track of her team. They were in alien territory and she had been foolish enough to let Amaris and Rowan out of her sight. They had all been put off balance by the presence of the shop and the initial friendliness of the wooden man. Sephira should have been expecting some sort of trick. They had stumbled through a mysterious, clearly magical gateway, deep in the Scalvoris Mountains. They had been fools to not be more wary.



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The First Steps in a Thousand Arcs

Postby Amaris » Mon May 07, 2018 11:53 pm

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- common / murnasian

Had it been the Ancient Language? Amaris wasn’t versed enough in it to truly know it. But why would they know who wrote it? Brows furrowed, they mulled over it. Perhaps when they left the cave, they would inquire about it to their father, who was certainly more knowledgeable on the subject of language. Soon enough, the questions were placed in the back of their mind and attention returned to the items before them.

One would think that they might have learned from past experiences what touching an unknown object would result in. There had been plenty of instances they could have learned from, from the Ice Caves of Ishallr to the expedition on the Immortals’ Tongue. Though, truthfully, only one experience had a fairly bad result in regards to their touching a stray object. Regardless, the blinding light subsided and there was something terribly wrong with the situation. They were so used to looking down at things, and now they had to crane their heads up to see what was previously about the same size as them. Had everything become massive? No; they’d just gotten smaller. And, as it would seem, it wasn’t just them.

Jaw dropped, they gaped for a moment before they were very literally taken from their stupor. While they had shrunken, nothing else had changed. As such, what might have been a nice approach of a concerned, normal-sized shopkeeper, was the foreboding step of a monstrous creature. They didn’t require much pulling to be hastened forward and out of the way. The mixed blood was perhaps glad only in instances like this for the length of their legs, aiding in their stride.

At first, they weren’t exactly sure what they were running towards. They were aware, however, that another set of thundering footsteps had added to Charlie’s relatively easy march. These were hurried, panicked almost. A quick glance up and they could confirm it was Sephira - and that she was getting dangerously closer to where the now inches tall pair were running. As focused as they were on running, they also had to think of a solution to this mess. But, of course, not being squashed underfoot of their now much larger companions was the pinnacle of priorities.
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The First Steps in a Thousand Arcs

Postby Aegis » Wed May 09, 2018 6:47 pm

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Charlie's steps boomed, shaking the floorboards beneath him. The vibrations wouldn't be noticed by normal sized people, but to Amaris and Rowan, it was just a hair shy of an earthquake. The vibrations would make Amaris' long, but awkward strides send her to her knees or trip more than once. A shadow cast over Amaris as Charlie's foot came down over her. There were more runes carved there, but he was moving to fast to see what exactly the were. The wooden shoe crashed down, a breath away from Amaris' pretty nose. It lifted away once more as he kept walking, and with Rowan's help, Amaris was brought to the cover of the mouse hole.

It was dark within the hole, the only illumination ambient from the room outside. The pair were safe.

Charlie looked shocked at Sephira's veiled accusation, "I have no idea young lady. They were just here." His eyes fell upon Sephira's hand on Wyvern, and he stepped back, his wooden arms up defensively, "Please, if you're here to rob me, just take what you want and go. I don't want any trouble." Then he remembered her question about the mirror, "That's just Lydia. I don't know what she is, and I named her that. She's harmless really, just a bit grabby. "I-I can help you look for them, but your guess is as good as mine. Please just... just don't hurt me. Or my shop. It's all I have."

Charlie continued backing away from the dangerous woman, and bumped the shelf lightly behind him. The same shelf that had the mouse hole tucked in behind it. And his bumping into it caused a critter living upon its side in the corner to be awoken. It smelled food. Hot, warm blood. Meat. It floated down along the line the spinneret crafted behind it. The wooden spider descended right in front of the entrance to the mouse hole, settling upon the floor in front of Amaris and Rowan. It was dark, with large fangs and a slew of wooden eyes. And yet, venom seemed to drip from those sharpened fangs. It appeared to be a spider, beautifully carved from a piece of teak, similar to the real thing aside from coloring. But to the shrunken Amaris and Rowan, it was the size of a hippo.

Within the mouse hole, while dark, it was clear that it was a small space within between walls. There was room to run to the left and to the right, and straight forward would plop them right into a wall. With the limited light, it was clear that it was a dusty place, and that the wood had been covered in scratches. It was too dark to see further in either direction, though it there did seem to be a light breeze moving from the mouse hole to the corridor to the right.

And it lunged at Amaris, looking to sink its fangs into the councilor.

Behind Sephira, within the mirror, the Sephira-creature meowed loudly, and began purring. It bumped its head against the barrier of the mirror, and began pawing at it from its side. It then consumed the hair that it had stolen from Sephira, as if it were spaghetti upon a fork. And as the last of the hair disappeared from Sephira, and with it, all memories associated with the Elements in the last season.

 ! Aegis wrote:
Congratulations! You're still alive! Amaris and Rowan are now in a combat scenario, so please treat it as such. Feel free to ask questions.



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The First Steps in a Thousand Arcs

Postby Sephira » Fri May 11, 2018 10:57 pm

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The mage’s eyes flared, suddenly realizing that she had allowed herself to get out of hand. She had panicked and sought out the first person to blame. It was almost disorienting to see a peaceful man fearful of her, this was not something she was accustomed to. The woman was an Element, someone who protected people, or at least tried to. She held her hands up passively to the wooden man, the wrath dissipating from her face like a passing cloud of smoke.

However before she could speak, right at that moment Sephira paused, her eyes going hazy as if she were about to faint as a strange sensation passed through her mind. Like something was being pilfered...and taken, like a book stolen from a shelf. Just like that it was gone and her eyes snapped back into focus. Something was wrong, very wrong. The mage couldn’t be quite sure what it was, but it now felt like there was a gaping hole in her mind. Like a half-remembered dream, she knew something had been taken simply because now it felt like she was grasping at empty air when she tried to remember. Regardless of whatever she had lost, the woman didn’t have the time to be introspective. She had frightened Charlie, and she needed to make amends swiftly. Sephira had not meant to lose control like that.

Her eyes flared with hues of emerald green and a soft blue. “I’m sorry, please, I meant no harm.” She said humbly, making sure that her hands were no where near her sword.

“Where I come from, I’m a soldier, I protect people...I...I don’t steal.” Sephira said as gently as she could. The Element took a step back from him, swiveling her head for a moment to glance at the reflection in the mirror. The creature wearing her form purred and begin bumping her head against the glass, sending warning tremors down her back. It wanted out, and the mage knew that if it did somehow escape the glass that it would bring a whole new kind of danger to Charlie’s shop.

“Please, help me find my friends.” She uttered, glancing back at the woodcarver before snapping her head back around to meet the eyes of the creature within the mirror.

“And tell me what that is...and can if it can get out?” A thread of worry and panic was woven into Sephira’s voice, and her hand was back at Wyvern’s hilt. But the mage’s eyes were fixed on the mirror, her pupils quivered with adrenaline, and her nostrils flaring slightly as she hardened her nerves.

“Because I have a feeling it wants out...soon.” she muttered, her words barely audible. She breathed in deeply, drawing in the ether around her and setting both her Sparks alight. Sometimes ether could be intoxicating, filling her with it’s cool, quicksilver embrace. It brought a calm over the mage, a sensation that was sometimes replaced with jitteriness after burning just a little too much of it. Like an overdosing addict. For now, her etheric channels were fresh and ready, and the mage infused her Attunement Spark with her intent and a dash of the ephemeral energy. She needed to find her companions, and if she had time…discover what the creature was in the mirror was.

Her attunement spark immediately leapt toward the exquisite Frequency she had sensed earlier, when she had been attempting to discern their location. It took a few trills to wrench its fawning attention away and force it to begin inspecting her immediate surroundings. Notes reverberated all around the mage and her spark was fascinated with all of them, no matter how mundane. Like a sparrow fascinated with a shiny fleck of metal, it fluttered from frequency to frequency, but Sephira pushed her will against its primeval alien consciousness, forcing it to look for living things. For a drunkard and the councilwoman, and if she had the time…examining the beast disguised as her in the mirror. It took the Attuner roughly three bits now to fully attune to an object, but she didn’t necessarily need a full attunement to know that Rowan and Amaris were alive, just a whiff of their essence, a few notes associated with them would do. She could spend more time looking for them later. Sephira had a feeling that time might not be on her side.



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"Inside each of us, there is the seed of both good and evil. It's a constant struggle as to which one will win.
And one cannot exist without the other."

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