• Mature • A Long Walk with Chanter

Pygmalion accompanies the head psychologist/nurse of Dukahrn's back to Almund.

78th of Ashan 720

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A Long Walk with Chanter


78th of Ashan 720

Chanter and Pygmalion were a few breaks out of Harvadr, on the road to Almund. They'd come a long way from Scalvoristown, since having met at the University. The route had been mostly uneventful. Perhaps the fact that Pygmalion was taking the form of the Dubaebo had scared off many of those who might accost them. Or the fact that Jim Chanter was a famous pirate in his day stayed their hand. In any event, they made it this far without much trouble. So Pygmalion saw little reason to change his form back to that of a humanoid. Besides, he'd become somewhat comfortable with his Dubaebo totem of the last few days. Occasionally, at need, he could temporarily use the voice of his Biqaj totem to communicate with the head psychologist of Dukahrn's.

Otherwise, he wouldn't have said much if it weren't for Chanter's talkative nature. The avriel man liked to tell stories that much was for sure. In a way, his storytelling helped jog Pygmalion's ailing memory. He was able to form connections that had been lost over the past tentrials. Even in the case where they had nothing to do with Pygmalion personally or things he'd experienced... It was helpful. Pygmalion supposed it was a credit to his role as head psychologist and nurse of Dukahrn's.

The avriel ex-pirate was in the middle of one of his stories when they came upon a bend in the road. "... and then, I flew overhead the sloop and dropped a lit Molotov cocktail onto the deck. That brought her down, sure enough!"

Pygmalion growled in acknowledgment, then echoed his biqaj totem's voice, "So... you sent your prize to the deep?"

Chanter smirked sideways at the Dubaebo, and shook his head, "Got some magic of my own, matey. Plus, gotta love the cooper's trade. Much of the prize we were after they floated right to the top of the surface after the ship itself was blown apart. We weren't after no tub. Just the rum they were hauling."

Pygmalion nodded and growled thoughtfully. Then, they came to the bend in the road. "Perhaps we should make camp here? It's getting near dark. How far out from Almund might we be?"

Chanter shrugged, "I've never walked all the way... I usually fly, but I suppose we're a few days walk yet, at the pace we're going. On the wing? It would only take a day to get anywhere from anywhere on the island."

The Dubaebo grunted and shrugged its shoulders. "Follow." He grunted and headed off into the nearby brush, where they'd be hidden from passersby in the road. They made some distance into the surrounding wilderness until they came to a slight clearing. Here, Pygmalion was confident they could avoid notice, and make camp until they were ready to take watches and rest away from their wearisome journey.

"Is it chilly for you, Chanter? If so, we may set a fire. Gather a ring of rocks and kindling. We'll set up camp here."

Having been so instructed, Chanter's gave him a twisted smirk before he set about the task. Nevertheless, Pygmalion helped him, gathering sticks with his maw and bringing them over toward the spot where they were to set their fire. Before too long, they had what they needed to start it, and a small fire was roaring within moments, fed on kindling and deadwood.

While waiting, Pygmalion stared off into the darkness, while Chanter ate his packed ration, watching the Dubaebo. For a few moments, they sat thus. Pygmalion enjoyed the silence. As entertaining as Chanter's stories and tall tales were, they did get a bit too distracting while trying to keep themselves safe on the road.

After about half a break, Chanter finished his meal and drink, and stood up next to the fire. Pygmalion saw his shadow cross his own on the ground, as he came around to the other side of the camp. Once he was beside the Dubaebo, the avriel sat there, and watched, following the beast's eyes into the forest.

Perhaps he was wondering why Pygmalion searched the darkness. Whatever the case, it appeared to Pygmalion that he was trying to form a rapport with the beast, by imitating its mannerisms. Thus, as he opened up with his next bit of speech, the Dubaebo's suspicions were formed and solidified. "So... Pygmalion? You're a mage yes...?"

"Aye, that I am." The black wolf-like creature rumbled. "I can become other creatures at need."

Chanter hummed at that, and for a few bits was silent again, staring off into the wood. The wind blew through the trees as they sat there, a chilly breeze that set Pygmalion's spiny quills on edge.

Before long, Chanter opened up again, "So becoming other creatures, is that a cosmetic change, or can you truly take on their abilities?"

"I adopt the abilities of the totem in full. As it was when I took on the totem."

"They say at the hospital you came to them as a middle-aged biqaj man. Is that your true, original form?"

For a moment, this gave the Dubaebo pause. Who was he really? A question that had bedeviled him since awakening in Beacon. He hadn't seen the form through which he'd traversed to this island. Pygmalion only knew that he was large and tall. And that it was more economical to adopt the form of someone much smaller, such as Pygmalion, the older biqaj. His frame was far thinner and more compact than... than...

"Rakvald." The Dubaebo intoned. And then, as if a cascade of light had been shone on his synapses, he found himself unfurling into self-awareness. He was Rakvald. Not merely his father or teacher, but Rakvald in truth. His original form!

"I'm sorry?" Chanter asked, not quite understanding.

"I'm... Rakvald the Last... I was a reborn Lotharro, but I sacrificed my immortality at the Chapel of Imagination. Now I will no longer be reborn." The Dubaebo wasn't sure why he was telling Chanter this. Still, it came out all the same as if his mind was automatically unburdening itself of its lost memories.

"Then, there was Desnind, the Mermaid Cirinna, the Darkness in the forest, and the Dubaebo..." The Dubaebo grunted, and something painful snapped deep in his body. He grunted, "I... I feel him now... He has arrived."

This being said, the Dubaebo began shifting and changing forms, quite rapidly. Rakvald couldn't be contained any longer. Chanter's eyes flew wide open, as he beheld the beast turning forms in front of him. The black-furred beast howled at the sky as his skin shifted, his bones broke and reformed. His blood boiled as it altered in consistency.

Then, once the mutability of his form was established, he began changing shape. His quills retracted, his fur drew back into his dermis, which was changing color to an olive tone. He rumbled his discomfort and agony but managed to keep the worst of any potential noise-making at bay by sheer discipline.

Within moments, Rakvald had emerged, naked on the ground of the outskirts of that wooded area. Chanter rifled through the things he'd gathered, the things that had belonged to the old man Pygmalion. One of which was an oversized robe, that looked as if it'd fit this Rakvald. He draped it over the fallen Lotharro.

Rakvald shifted on the ground and whimpered as the robe made contact with his skin as if he was too sensitive. "Thank you..."

So saying, he managed to get up from the ground, pushing himself off and then throwing the robe over his head. He coughed once it was on, and nearly doubled over in renewed pain. "Ach! The ache! It's the worst part. Only mercy of Unleashing... at least it's over quickly!" He laughed a little and then coughed.

Chanter had little to say to Rakvald after that display.

The next morning, they made for Almund. Before the sunset on the following afternoon, they arrived at the walls of that great town and capital of Scalvoris. Rakvald parted ways with Chanter, but not before promising compensation once he managed to gather his fortunes. In the meantime, Rakvald would owe Chanter a favor.

The Lotharro found lodging at a nearby Inn, at the edge of the town's wall. There he would stay until he found his bearings.
word count: 1433

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Re: A Long Walk with Chanter


[*]Becoming: Echo: Using Rakvald's voice in Dubaebo form.
[*]Becoming: Unleashing: From Dubaebo to Rakvald.
[*]Becoming: Unleashing: Can be used once every few days before overstepping, at least.
[*]Endurance: The agony of transformation.
[*]Endurance: Becoming is a long agonizing process at Competence at the art.
[*]Meditation: Realizing who you truly are.

Loot: -
Wealth: -
Injuries: -
Renown: -
Magic XP: Yes, for Becoming
Skill Review: Appropriate to level.
Points: 10
- - -
Comments: I love Rakvald/Pygmalion! His threads never fail to entertain me!

Chanter seems like an interesting NPC. I have to admit, I’m curious about the Avriel’s background story and how the pirate turned into a psychologist. Taking the form of a Dubaebo is a good way to scare off bandits and other people that might cause them trouble.

The conversation between Chanter and Pygmalion was interesting, especially the part where they talked about Pygmalion’s magic. Pygmalion’s remembering who he really is was unexpected, but not at all unrealistic, and the transformation into a Lotharro was well-written.

I’m glad that Rakvald finally remembered who he really is!

Enjoy your rewards!

word count: 185





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