Solo The Spelled Apprentice - Part II

Aleron explores his new power and draws out some metal

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Built into the cliffs overlooking the Suvan Sea, Riverfall resides on the edge of grasslands of Cyphrus where the Bluevein River plunges off the plain and cascades down to the inland sea below. Home of the Akalak, Riverfall is a self-supporting city populated by devoted warriors. [Riverfall Codex]

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The Spelled Apprentice - Part II

Postby Aleron on January 23rd, 2016, 1:13 pm

Winter 1 - Continued from The Spelled Apprentice - Part I

The heat of the forge radiated through the room as the ingot of iron grew hotter and hotter. It seemed to share a warmth with him, though more dull and less pronounced than the fire surrounding it. It was communicating with him the temperature it felt. Aleron could tell it was reaching the correct temperature quickly, so he retrieved the blacksmith's hammer from the iron table as the Akalak watched. He didn't need advice from the Akalak to know that he would be drawing out the metal now.

With the hammer in his hand of flesh, the metal resonated with him that it was beginning to get too hot. He reached into the forge with his metal arm, and as he grabbed it the piece reacted to him with gratitude. He withdrew it quickly from the flame, and then slowly with care turned around and set it upon the anvil. It was molten now, glowing a hue of bright-hot orange, white-hot. The flames from the forge danced around him in celebration, the orange glow illuminating what was left of the darkness around the anvil's surface. Readying the hammer in his other hand, he shifted his grip on the metal piece to hold it steady between his index finger and his thumb, pressing down with his palm with a good deal of strength to brace it for the shaping it would soon be receiving.

He brought up his right arm with the hammer, and then he swiftly brought it down for the first strike. The sharp clang resonated through the room, and then he repeated the motion for another strike. He focused on maintaining his accuracy at just hitting the piece correctly for now, flattening it out ever so slightly with each powerful swing. It was beginning to be deformed now, a pale shade of what it would later become. With each strike the piece conveyed a sense of fullness, as if it were getting overfed and widened too much. He shifted his strikes to begin drawing it out more length-wise, pummeling it out at different angles to keep drawing it out.
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The Spelled Apprentice - Part II

Postby Aleron on January 23rd, 2016, 1:14 pm

Entranced as he was in his work, Aleron barely noticed the words of the Akalak in the back of his mind. "You're doing well. Just remember to measure and go according to the plans. You only need to taper it a little, but you don't want it to be too thin or the point will be useless." The Akalak watched Aleron with a cupped chin, genuinely curious about how the Isur was learning to work the metal. He noticed the way Aleron corrected himself, as if he was feeling the art like a natural, or like someone who had worked with metal for much of his life.

Aleron continued to hammer away at it, drawing it out with repeated strikes. It still looked nothing like the basic shape of a sword, but it was a lot more length-wise than it used to be. Drawing out iron or steel was an art in an of its own. Aleron wasn't very good at it, but the metal seemed to be guiding him in a manner that surprised him. He had no complaints, but he did worry that the origin of this gift would soon bear him a nasty price to pay. The fullness it communicated was beginning to decline with every swing, inducing a sort of euphoria within him that made his head swim. It distracted him from everything else beyond his craft, as if consuming his attention for its own ends.

The Isur's muscles burned as he hammered away, both up his metal arm and his arm of flesh. Muscles he had not used in a long time complained and ached, asking for less when he wanted more. His grip of the metal was changing over time, and he was soon beginning to draw out a thin bar-shaped piece for the tang, where the handle for the sword would go, where he could hold it from with more stability without his hand getting in the way. As he continued to hammer out the shape, he was almost finished drawing out the piece length-wise. He ignored the soreness running up his body, knowing that it was a natural thing for there to be pain before his body adapted.
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The Spelled Apprentice - Part II

Postby Aleron on January 23rd, 2016, 1:14 pm

The bar that he was working on was coming along nicely, and he twirled it in his fingers, rotating it to hammer it at different angles into a rounded shape. It told him toughly that its edges were too bumpy in certain spots, so he followed through and mended those areas. Haiduk continued to watch, still impressed that the Isur wasn't making any huge mistakes as his apprentices usually did. So, this was why the Isur were such renowned craftsmen? No wonder they were so highly valued. Aleron paused to wipe the sticky sweat off his brow that was dripping down his forehead, the heat of the forge to his back truly invigorating. The metal on the blade portion of the sword was beginning to cool off, so he took it off the anvil by the new tang and held it over the forge fire.

The piece immediately told him that the fire was too cold, conveying a chill which he himself felt. Aleron poked around the coals a bit to bring the hot ones to the top and the cool ones to the center. Then, he pulled on the billows rope with three deliberate tugs. The heat was good enough now, so he held it there for awhile. The metal began to heat up again, and soon it was hot enough to be worked on further. He pulled out the flat, rough-looking molten chunk of iron sword by the tang with his metal hand, turning around to set it on the forge again. Normally Aleron would let slip a prideful quip about his progress, but his mind was wrestling with the idea of the new magic he had. Was this a gift from Izurdin? Yes, it had to be...

Aleron smiled at the iron as he began to beat the metal into shape again, focusing this time on bending out the edges so there was a distinct rise in the middle. He made a pledge to Izurdin, speaking in his native tongue. "I dedicate the drawing of this blade to you Izurdin, and I thank you for the insight you have granted me in the absence of the tradition of my brethren." The prayer was strange and alien-sounding to the Akalak, who didn't have a response for it. He didn't want to pry the Isur for what his words meant.
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The Spelled Apprentice - Part II

Postby Aleron on January 23rd, 2016, 1:15 pm

By now the sword was at a decent length as Aleron worked on the edges. Every so often he would give the edge a few taps to taper it inward, and then he would backtrack to spread that uneven surface backward or sometimes forward through the blade. He paused for a moment, realizing that he shouldn't trust his newfound abilities entirely. He stepped over to the table and picked up the ruler in his metal hand. He placed the ruler at the side of the hot metal, starting wtih the tang. He had forged the length of the tang well enough, leaving excess length in case he had to upset it or chip it down. He subtracted an inch from his measurement, and scratched the iron near the top edge of the ruler with his thumb as a placeholder while he slid it into the next set of twelve inches. Aleron repeated the process until he measured the sword fully.

Aleron added up the notches in his head, eventually realizing that the blade was too long, even by Akalak standards since they seemed to use slightly bigger blades. He had to push some of the metal back, and do some more tapering. By now, the metal was beginning to cool off again. He placed the ruler back on the table and picked up his sword by the tang, running it through the fire and pulling on the bellows once to heat it up. The forge hadn't cooled much since he last used it. When it was sufficiently heated, he brought the piece back to the anvil and got back to work on it. Haiduk saw the mistake, but he let the Isur figure that out on his own. He was here to help if Aleron became lost, but to him it was a bit more of a show and a throwback to the old days when he was learning how to smith the perfect Lakan.

Pounding in the tip of the blade lightly, Aleron set about shrinking it down. He only needed to shave off an inch, knowing that there would be room to grind down the remainder to the perfect length later. He hammered it at diagonal angles and repeated a lot of his work from before, refining the edges. The form of the blade had taken basic shape by now, and to Aleron it looked like a crude tool that an uncivilized creature might use for killing. Hammering in the edges and turning the blade around in his fingers to get both sides, he set about making sure the rise in the center of the blade was symmetrical. This task would take a long time, but he was patient.
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The Spelled Apprentice - Part II

Postby Aleron on January 23rd, 2016, 1:15 pm

Taking to shorter and lighter strikes, he focused on being as even as the project demanded. As he connected with the blade, he could feel the narrowness it indicated, gritty in places where the surface was uneven. Through guidance, he focused on flattening those imperfections. Now was not the time to go for a perfectly smooth finish, not by far, but he wanted the shape to be as true to the example of a broadsword as possible. He was mindful of having enough thickness for the fuller he would later be taught how to add. So far, he had mostly worked with techniques he was familiar with but had only used sparingly. It would be interesting to see how this new gift would behave in the face of something unexpected.

Aleron had to heat the blade one final time, but he knew that he was close to finishing the drawing. Heating it up once again in the forge, he brought it to the anvil with vim and vigor. He could tell that the portion of the blade by the tang was uneven and crude, so he focused on hammering that out to a rough 90-degree angle. The metal bended to his unrelenting force, his mustles aching for a break, the shock reverberating through them like hot pokers digging through his skin. He knew he was soft, but Aleron wasn't about to let that stop him. From there, Aleron finished up on some of the last remaining imperfections he could find, and then picked up the sword by the tang and looked it over.

It was a reasonably well shaped, drawn out piece. Haiduk's voice chimed in as an interlude to Aleron's scrutiny. "You said you only made a dagger before? You're work is pretty good for a novice. Now that you're done drawing it out, let's have some lunch. You need to keep your energy up, working the forge." The Isur heard this clearly, and set his blade upon the iron table carefully and with the respect it deserved. The Akalak was right, he would rest for a small while before continuing. He nodded, and Haiduk led him out of the forge.
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The Spelled Apprentice - Part II

Postby Konrad Venger on March 11th, 2016, 11:27 pm

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Hello again, dude! Once you get back and deduct your Winter Seasonal Expenses, I'll grade this up, no problem. PM me when you get back!

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Note: As of Fall 517AV, Konrad is known only as "Hansel" in Endrykas
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