Quest [Spring Quest] Rigor Samsa

‘Maybe we should think of memory itself as a work of art—and a work of art is never finished, only abandoned.’

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The Diamond of Kalea is located on Kalea's extreme west coast and called as such because its completely made of a crystalline substance called Skyglass. Home of the Alvina of the Stars, cultural mecca of knowledge seekers, and rife with Ethaefal, this remote city shimmers with its own unique light.

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[Spring Quest] Rigor Samsa

Postby Thomas Cosa on April 3rd, 2016, 2:31 pm

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Thomas visibly flinched as he was struck by the statue's ire, his spine pinched by her creeping displeasure. His magic responded, spiraling around her, alert to anything. Still, he found nothing, his spell diffusing over the statue dissatisfied, only collecting the most obvious information. Her stone was solid and expertly crafted, warm from the now-hidden-behind-the-storm sun.

He'd only barely recovered from the shock, his mind only just processing whatever happened, his magic prowling around the fountain desperate to strike again, when Buno addressed him. "I only suggest that we assign the most able to whatever tasks they'd be best suited for, I hadn't meant to offend," he offered with a shrug, the majority of his attention still fixated on the statue. Buno was hardly worth his time, at least until he started initiating people into magics left and right. Still, he was a volunteer the same as Thomas and the others, and deserved a response at the very least. "And it wasn't like I actively prevented anyone from trying. Obviously," he gestured to Izuyanai and to Kelski, who'd taken to dancing in the waters and stalking off to talk to herself, "People will do what they want, and we can only hope that they'll stumble into something."

Done with the old man, he returned with full force at the fountain. His magic raged like a hurricane, at a frenzy from the statue last interaction. Thomas was sure he'd seen her smile flicker into a quick frown, her displeasure palpable, and yet the statue seemed to stubbornly be only what she was - marble. The fountain proved more interesting, it's aura collecting at the bottom into a bulbous prism. His Auristics delighted in it's apparent delicateness, the sheer size of it almost ready to burst. The wizard checked against it, the thing wobbling in repose like a ballon filled with water. There wasn't anything about it that was comprehensible, but nothing like that had detoured him in the past.

"There isn't anything to fix, Budo," Thomas replied sourly, he and his magic almost completely focused on Khara. Her aura shinned with ruby red and magenta, sputtering flame like a burning candle. Nothing impressive, but he thought he caught the glimmer of magic. "If anything, she's open to a whole world now. A smart person would seek out lessons, an instuctor. Someone at the Dusk Tower might be willing to show you how to take advantage of your new gifts," he said, a casual interest coloring his voice. He was busy with Izuyanai and Estrellir, and while he rightfully encouraged by Estrellir progress, Izyuanai had stubbornly managed to surprise him at every chance. He wondered how her progress might be affected if he added Khara to the Kelvic's class.

Suddenly, there was a commotion. The other red head, Azira, had found something. Thomas waved his magic over to her, his spell pouring into her hand, fizzing with excitement as it rolled over the locket again and again. The statue may have refused his magic, but perhaps the locket wouldn't.

"The Doctor asks good questions, although I would argue that perhaps some don't search for a cure," Thomas responded, now focused on the spider. He wasn't thrilled with the effect the fountain had on him, and was even less enthusiastic about Lhavit's lack of literature on whatever magic he'd been struck with - but he wasn't unhappy to be given a magic. "The how and why of our situation may be unknown and unsolicited, but the results aren't entirely unpleasant," he said, his gaze falling on the statue again. Had he'd been on Sahova, the whole experience would be different. He'd have found someone to teach him for information or an audience with Mashaen, but in Lhavit? He had nothing to barter with, and the city had even less to tell him about his new magic.

"Perhaps I can help another way," he sighed, a touch defeated as he broke his spell. Thomas breathed deeply, closing his eyes as he clasped his hands together. Public displays of prayer weren't the norm for him, but he was going on too little information to hope to find anything in the Chavi himself.

Please help us. Please help me," was all he whispered as his left wrist lit in tightly, dusk purple and black flashing as he drifted into the Chavena, hoping to find some answers. The people around him collapsed into abstract shapes, lines connecting and threading between them all and everyone who was alive. Hopefully Avalis was feeling particularly charitable today.

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[Spring Quest] Rigor Samsa

Postby Khara on April 6th, 2016, 7:10 am

The strange horned woman had been the last to introduce herself to the group and Khara couldn't help but give Alses her full attention. Her manner of speaking was strange, seeming to refer to herself as more than one person. Maybe it was a language issue? Khara knew all about that, after all. Everything about the Teacher was fascinating and it was nice to hear that the strange experience Khara had with the flowers wasn't entirely unusual. Though having it happen to food instead was probably nice.

Büdo's assurances were appreciated and she couldn't help but smile back in return, but she also couldn't help but feel slightly inclined to agree with what Thomas interjected with. Khara hadn't been entirely certain she wanted everything to go away or be fixed. Despite all it's unwanted information and complications, the way she had experienced the world for the better part of the season had been exciting and had, at times, been like seeing everything for the first time all over again. If only she could learn to control it... The Dusk Tower. Khara made note of the name. Even if she was left incapable of the magics the fountain had given her once everything was set right again - if it was set right again - she still wanted to know more about what she had gone through. The Inarta nodded her thanks to Thomas. He seemed to rub the others the wrong way to an extent, but he just reminded Khara of an Avora or an Endal - people who were good at things and wanted others to know it and expected a certain degree of respect. There was something comforting in that, even if Khara wasn't entirely sure if it should have that effect on her.

As Khara began her fruitless search of the fountain she tried to keep her awareness of the others and what they were saying and doing. Those that had been declared mages - for the most part - seemed to be gazing at it with varying degrees of intent. She thought of trying to watch them, to better understand what they were doing when the fountain didn't turn up any new information for her when Kelski caught her attention. She seemed to muttering to herself. No, not herself, someone or something else. Maybe she was speaking to the plants around the area? Or maybe the birds? Sira had been able to understand birds to some extent, after all. Khara couldn't help but smile a bit as the woman laughed and seemed to dance a bit. It almost looked like the shifting shadows joined her, but that was impossible... wasn't it? The Doctor seemed to know something but Khara couldn't quite make out what he had asked her.

As her search finished Khara found one of her questions answered - the water had always been there - but that only brought on more questions in it's place and Veldrys seemed to be of the same thought as Khara on it. The water had to be coming from somewhere, but if it had been here and all the trouble had only recently started then it really was the statue's fault. Though fault was a strong word, it seemed wrong to blame the woman.

The small commotion back at the fountain had her look towards where Azira had been searching within it. She'd found something! Kelski had already joined her and Khara was quick to get as near as possible without actually entering the fountain herself. Though, given that Izuyanai had also chosen to brave the waters and none of the three seemed any worse for it - and the fact everyone was already getting a bit wet thanks to the storm - it was something Khara gave up on and she stepped into the fountain herself to get a better look at the object Azira had come across.

It was a locket and her gaze followed Kelski's in the same manner of going from portrait to statue to observe the likeness found there. Her eyes settled on the etched words, ’Love is to feel, What knowledge cannot know.’ Khara found her hand absentmindedly raising to the side of her neck to rest on the small metallic mark there. Whoever this woman was, Khara couldn't deny the wisdom she inspired.

Both Kelski and Veldrys commented about the unknown woman's name. It certainly would have made things easier if it had been present within the locket rather than the small phrase. As the warm feeling water of the fountain lapped at her boots and began to soak up the legs of her bryda, Khara felt herself drawn to look back towards the locket. She was only vaguely aware that the others were still speaking as her attention seemed to refuse to move away from the object.

Khara still wasn't sure how to describe it, at least, not as it was happening. She felt as if part of herself expanded outward towards the locket, questing towards it as her senses opened. Somewhere in the back of her mind she knew it was happening again. There were others better suited for it, though! She didn't need to. But no matter how hard she tried to stop, Khara couldn't pull herself away from it and the sensations it caused, though it all felt fuzzy and vague. Her skin could feel the texture of the beautiful etchings around the locket, the temperature of it became noticeable, the color of the thing became somehow richer and she felt as if the raindrops that had fallen on her skin echoed the drops of the fountain water that remained on the locket, but whether her sudden lapse into the magic that the fountain had granted her would be useful ... well, that was at the mercy of the statue and the waters themselves now, she suspected - though that care was slowly vanishing as time passed. Either way, she could faintly see something, but what exactly that was she had no clue. Did all lockets look like this when you went searching out their aura? Was that even what she was doing? It felt wonderful though, that much was for certain, even if it was somewhat intimidating, even frightening in a way.

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[Spring Quest] Rigor Samsa

Postby Alses on April 6th, 2016, 6:40 pm

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Alses seized at the moments of weakness and aberration, her power roaring at full spate and pouring like a tsunami into those anomalous spots, glutting them and using the pressure of her presence as a wedge to drive open the ephemeral fissures, her own djed dancing inside and drinking deep of the well of secrets therein.

It was perhaps a shame that auristics was such an intensely personal discipline; unlike the showy pyrotechnics of reimancy, all its glories were internal, visible only to the practitioner under normal circumstances. If there had been some sort of lightshow, then perhaps people would have been a little less…enthusiastic…about getting in the way; as it was, more delicate and thorough investigation would evidently have to wait until people stopped dicking about in the fountain, churning and muddying the auristic waters even as Alses’ fine control fought to discern the slightest subtleties before charging in. Brute force sometimes worked, admittedly, but she had other concerns about heavy djed expenditure at this early juncture.

A veteran of previous undertakings in the name of the City, she understood just how djed-heavy these little excursions often were – and jumping in without due regard for her own soul was…ill-advised. Alses took a deep breath and turned her magic inward, wielding the power of her mind like a scalpel, slicing away at the outgoing torrent with a practiced hand, splintering and choking the golden tide until it fell away and back into the nova-like blaze that was her compound soul, an internal sun.

Coming away from comprehensive use of her magic was always akin to surfacing for air after a long dive into the depths of the sea – only the ocean in this case was the rich panoply of auras sentient and otherwise which pervaded the world and informed it on the most subliminal, basic levels.

Alses took a long, lingering breath and shook her head once, sharply, instinctively trying to clear it and – as usual – failing miserably. “It’s a mess,” she proclaimed with a sigh to the world at large. “Everything is compressed around the base of the fountain, right under the statue. Many auras all crammed into the same place, all tangled up together - I can't understand all of them, at least, not without a lot more time and more djed than I'm willing to risk right now, but of those we've examined, they are all imprints of sentients. Most of them with the same set of mind, too, although that could be subjective on our part. Quite the conundrum, a sort of physical impossibility.” Alses paused, thinking. “It looks rather like Tanroa’s temple,actually,” she added, pensive, even as her thoughts took a new track. “I've always felt that time is unstuck in there; there are impressions on impressions, all pressed on one another. We wonder if a similar phenomenon applies here. Or perhaps we’re looking at buried mementoes of some kind or other, having taken on something of the character of their owners.

Alses was thinking of wedding rings and necklaces, trinkets of a love that had gone awry, soured and poisoned, cast aside as a literal as well as a symbolic severing of the ties that had once bound so tightly. That, however, brought up more questions than it answered; if it were true, then why now had something untoward happened?

She walked slowly – and as unobtrusively as was possible, in her state – towards the gathering around the fountain, towards Azira who appeared to be at the centrepiece of it all, holding some small object that glittered and shone in her hand. She was distracted from the prize, momentarily, by the sound of Thomas’ self-satisfied voice pontificating, this time on the wisdom of the cure.

Well. She knew where that came from; acquisition of new magics was not something that happened easily or lightly for most mages, even in Lhavit where the sharing of knowledge and instruction was relatively free.

Perhaps control might be a better aim, rather than cure? Turn inconvenience to our advantage, if we can; we know I would be quite glad to retain what the fountain has given, provided I could control it more effectively.

To have had a new discipline to play with and then, by your own action, no less, to cut off your access to it…that was what was being seriously debated by the others, whether they fully grasped the implications or not, and Alses could see exactly where Thomas was coming from in attempting to modulate their zeal, even given the current deplorable state of affairs. It was unusual, and slightly uncomfortable, that they agreed.

Perhaps we could ask a jeweller about it,” she mused aloud, turning her attention back to Azira and the current focus of their collective intellects, the volume enough to make it more than a merely private surmise, a thought thrown out for group appraisal. “If we can’t find anything else. Whatshisname at the Shining Diamond, maybe? Fine metalwork and engraving like this – although I freely admit we’re no expert - is surely skilled work; they may have a record or recollection of it, and who bought it. Although I thought lockets and the like tended to be silver or gold,” she added, idly turning the peculiarities of the current situation over and over in her head. “Not red brass or copper or whatever this one actually is. We'd like a closer look, if we might, Azira, after the others have had their turn? I might be able to pry a little more out of it, given some time.

"If this were a normal fountain, we'd agree with you, doctor," she remarked to Veldrys, her voice light. "Lucis and Lucis might have records of the pipes they put in and the work they did to make it. But given that we have statues inexplicably appearing and waters inducing random effects, I have to wonder if we'll find anything. Anything mundane that we might be able to trace through normal methods, I mean," she clarified quickly, seeking to head any offence off at the pass.

Which, now she came to think on it, prompted another question about oddities. Ignoring – for the moment – the locket and the tight knot of people at the fountain scouring its once-tranquil bowl for answers, she turned back, instead, towards Budo. “Forgive us our rudeness,” she began, eyes still far away, expression loose and calculating, “But what is your interest here, exactly? Not that I’m disputing your right to be here; everyone is useful. We merely wish to understand your reason. And if there’s anything you’ve noticed about all of this; you’ve been watching too, after all.

She would have stayed, politely attentive to the response, had her auristics not sent a warning prickle shooting up her spine, an instinctive alert to magic working and moving in her immediate vicinity. Even without turning to see, she could pinpoint it, feeling a soft wash of self – made manifest as a burning orange undulation twisting and twining against the currents, a wave of barely-focused magic that was almost characteristic of a novice, and a novice aurist at that.

With a sigh, Alses focused more of her mind in that direction, a subconscious directive sending more of her djed racing to follow this new development, hugging close about the diffusely-questing melange, tasting spice on her tongue all of a sudden, a heady burst of smell and flavour. In response, she thrummed her own aura, reaching inside herself and pushing pulses of brimming djed forcibly outward, setting up a harmonic vibration in the spangled panoply of colour and darkness and a thousand impossible sensations that hummed and crackled out from her fire-opal skin, a taste of her own personality and of the patchwork panorama of other, older lives that stretched behind and around her like an empress' train.

It was a beacon, an eyecatcher for an aurist, an attempt to distract the novice from prolonged and - presumably, if her own experiences were anything to go by - involuntary exposure to an unknown. Whether it would work or not was another matter, particularly since the magics they had been granted seemed almost maliciously capricious, but Alses gritted her teeth and tried it anyway.

There was a duty, at least in her mind, and Syna above knew Thomas, with his Views on overgiving and greatness, wouldn’t step in to help, even if he recognized a developing problem.
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[Spring Quest] Rigor Samsa

Postby Azira on April 6th, 2016, 10:53 pm

As she felt at the bottom of the fountain, the huntress mused on the little group who had assembled. Each was off doing their own thing, each seemed drastically different and she wondered how such an oddly mismatched group had come together. Thomas did not seem to be a favourite, not even with Büdo, so she wasn't alone in having an instant dislike for the man. Interestingly, their leader, if he could be called that, had defended Alses more readily than she would hav expected. Izuyanai had made allusions to Thomas's powers, albeit not with as many words or as much scorn in her tone, and yet there had been no word on the teacher's behalf. He seemed worth watching, even if it was simply because she doubted anyone else would consider him much. Veldrys had received such a warm recommendation from Büdo that Azira was pleased with her earlier assessment of him. He was still a stranger to her though so she would continue to distrust him a little due to that, but she wouldn't distrust him for his race. Some of the others were still questionable to her. Kelski seemed nice but then she had also been talking to herself when Azira had last seen her... or something.

She had barely had a chance whether to the woman would come and join her in her search when her fingers brushed something unexpected. Rather than the smoothness that she had thus far encountered, there was something sitting on the bottom. It was small, round and smooth. At first, she wondered if it was a pebble but that didn't seem right and as she lifted it up and free of the water, it was revealed to be a piece of jewellery with a chain hanging from it. Straightening up, she placed it flat on her palm, the fine links of its chain dangling over the side as she examined what was on it. It was a locket, small and delicate looking, but beautiful. She tried to trace the patterns, marvelling at the way they were etched in to the unusual surface, but her fingers were too large and so hid the fine tracings from view.

"Stunning," she breathed in her native Nari, as her fingers quested around the locket's edge. The Inarta pressed the button at the top and the circle of metal popped open to offer a view of what it held. Within the little window in one of its halves, a woman's drawing was clear to see. Like the etchings on the outside, a lot of effort had gone in to it and the detail of it was exquisite. Furthermore, she recognised who it depicted. Her gaze moved to the fountain's statue, noting the recognition in Kelski's eyes--when had she gotten here?--as well so that she was not alone in what she was seeing. Abruptly, she found that she and Kelski were not alone as the space near them became more crowded. Others had noticed her discovery and everyone seemed to want a look at it.

Izuyanai stood a short distance from them in the water and so the huntress chose to offer her a closer look as she didn't even seem to have noticed what was going on. Instead, the bartender was gazing at the statue's face, clearly enthralled.

"Izuyanai! You want to see?" she called softly to her in Common. The words had barely left her mouth when she found the Symenestra offering his hand to her, an offer of help she realised as she went to pass him the locket. She drew it back, accepting his hand and stepping from the warmer waters of the fountain to the chill of the stormy air on her drenched skin. She glanced briefly at the locket's outside once more in search of a name but finding none, she held it out towards those in the fountain. She did not know whether it would be Khara, Kelski or Izuyanai who would take a closer look at it. She was sure that it would go the rounds but she decided it was better to make certain that no one would hog it.

"Pass it around." It was not a strong order, she was not trying to impose her will upon anyone, but it needed to be said for the sake of fairness. "There is no name. It would be good to know it, maybe. A... jeweller is good. It is made well. I know little about metal but it is beautiful, very fine," she explained to those gathered as she tried to provide some sort of response for everyone present.

"There are words in it. I do not know what they are for. It says something about love. Maybe Kelski's story has truth," the huntress suggested, smiling at the woman. "It is the woman. The statue. She's in the locket. I don't know if it helps but... did anyone else find anything? Something to go with it, more clues?" she questioned in Common, looking around at the others to see if they had found anything. "I do not know what you mean, Alses. Maybe you have a good clue but can you... say it easier... better?" She shook her head. They'd know what she meant even if she couldn't find the word or so she hoped anyway.
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[Spring Quest] Rigor Samsa

Postby Elysium on April 7th, 2016, 7:32 am

”What does it say?” Budo asked with interest as the locket was passed around the circle. As Veldrys helped Azira from the fountain, it was as if the sky had been cut open.

Lightning lashed across the granite sky with the thunder close at hand. The storm was upon them and this one was abnormally fierce. Wind came sweeping across the terraces, carrying small whirlwinds of debris along for the ride. With the mounting chaos all around them, their guide seemed abstracted from their investigation, evaluating their options. With one hand, he hung onto his hat.

The two shadows weren’t difficult for Kelski to charm, unaccustomed to speaking with humans as they were. They ceased their dancing, but still seemed to waver to the music of the wind as it blew.

Veldrys ran his hand all along the fountain, but did not find purchase. No matter where he touched, it all seemed relatively ordinary, with no nook or cranny to search. Further inspection would reveal that the fountain was self-sustaining, expertly engineered to both draw from and feed water into the basin. The pipes were simply well hidden. His hand ghosted over them as passed near the dais. Were any of the water to actually spill over the side, it would be lost forever. But with the deluge upon them, that didn't seem likely.

”Not too sure…” Said the shadow to the left. ”It moved like a man,” supplied the shadow to the right, “but it was little, like a woman.”

”No face,” said the left. ”Always covered, always hidden. Not much was seen, except glittering, glistening in the sun. Bright and lovely.” The two of them seemed to relish this thought. But what they seemed to most enjoy was Kelski’s continued attentions. They were seemed to be competing with one another to hold her focus, lapsing in the typical shadow behavior as expected.

From what she could tell, their names were ‘Umbra’ and ‘Halo’ when translated from Makath, but before she could press them further, they broke, bickering with one another about who knew more than the other. It would take some diplomacy for her to continue the interaction. Interestingly, the little shadow became a bit more responsive at her kindness. At the proposition of friendship, it drew a little closer. It gave a little shudder of delight as Kelski’s hand passed through the inky darkness. That seemed to earn her a bit.

”Orchid,” it replied in a mellifluous little whisper. ”....because I like to lay beneath the flowers and shade the grass.” It spoke so softly, she’d scarcely be able to hear. Orchid seemed very self-conscious, which all in all was odd for a shadow.

”Precious,” said Umbra, interjecting. ”Darling, sweetheart, treasure!” Halo countered and the two were at it again, taken into bickering on who knew the lady’s name best. The subtext was obviously jealousy, which would be a definite problem were she to take things any further. Their overbearing presence seemed to be too much for little Orchid, who slid away into the background.

Izuyanai engaged with the rest of the group and splashed into the waters brazenly. It seemed the more people were in the waters, the happier this statue grew. As Thomas entered the Chavena, the world slid away into nothing. Instead it was supplanted with a gloried realm of interlocking shapes and patterns, each with a several paths and destinies as their made their way into the vast distance, toward the Ukalas. The chavi of those gathered there were especially bright and colorful he’d notice, some more than others, like that of Kelski who had a rather unique and incredibly varying chavi as it dissimilated into many forks and branches, breaking off into opalescent patterns that captivated the eye. Regardless, all that were there were deeply entangled at that moment, for better or worse, brought together by this crusade as an act of destiny.

There was a pattern nearby that he would not recognize and it was bright, brighter than all the assortment combined. It was just beyond the crowd, undulating and almost solitary, unencumbered by the massive web of connections the others seemed to have. Instead, it was a simple pattern, one he might recognize in the mortal scope of geometry. While whatever destiny it might have was weak and uncertain, beyond the scope of Thomas’ power, the past was etched deeply upon the Chavena and could be read by him, by virtue of Avalis’ gift.

He’d be drawn into a memory. It was a balmy summer evening. The ambient sounds of the Sharai chorused in the distance. Stars flickered on the breast of the navy sky and the moon was pinned there like a broach. Two lovers could be seen in this place, though there was no fountain here. Instead they were entwined on a blanket, looking out into the horizon. As a remote viewer, Thomas might choose to observe at any angle that he wished. The vision carried on. He would hear their murmured laughter and see their fevered kisses, on the precipice of abandoning dignity and making love in the grass.

He would see a red, gemstone arm glistening in the low light at the man's side, for he was a proud Isur. There was the woman in his arms, the woman of the fountain and in person she was more beautiful than ever. Her laurel eyes were flickering with genuine appreciation and love.

”I would do anything for you,” he said, in his deep, sonorous voice. The woman merely laughed by reply. He would taste the happiness, feel in the lilting cascade of her voice as it moved through him. This woman was larger than life. Soon after, the memory faded.

Khara began to focus and as she did, the incomprehensible shape of the aura became apparent. The effort would cause pain in a few moments and even if she tried she wouldn’t be able to let the focus go. It would require great concentration, perhaps even titanic willpower to resist the urge to release the auric sight as her fledgling tendrils of djed greedily drank in all the information they could. The locket was green, bright green and tasted like a melange of copper and windflowers but smelled like an ocean. It was a happy feeling color and had an incredible power all its own, casting a diffuse glow in the rich world of auristic sight.

”Me?” Budo replied innocently, to Alses’ questioning. ”I’m just doing a service for the community. Helping, organizing.” From what she could see of his aura, this was true. He didn't register any special interest in the task outside of the concern for the weather. His was an act of altruism, as bland as she might find that to be.

The surge of Alses’ aura would catch Khara’s eye, snapping her out of the trance and allowing to try and exert some kind of influence over the power, though it was to no avail. Alses underestimated her own power. Instead, Khara was drowning in sunlight and the fever dreams of a thousand lives or more as they bore down on her in the form of pure sense experience. Khara would taste the heady, cloying scent of kariino, and become lost in Tyrian purple, gilt and bronze. She would undoubtedly buckle beneath the weight of the despair that was but the surface of Alses’ astral body, the veneer of sadness that all Ethaefal had to endure. Khara would be touched to the core and in this moment of intensity, pain would streak through the backs of her eyes, straight to her brain. It was enough to throw the girl to the ground.
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[Spring Quest] Rigor Samsa

Postby Kelski on April 10th, 2016, 4:48 pm

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Kelski left Azira with a smile. She liked the woman and was glad the lady of the fountain had gifted her with something. That she so easily passed it away from her to let others look spoke volumes to Kelski about her character too. The Sea Eagle thought her heart must be as warm as her smile. She glanced around at the others, unsure of if they were like that or not. Mages perhaps were not, though the stories she’d heard about them so far had just been stories. They had, to a man and woman however, seemed self-centered and trusting of no one but themselves and each other. To Kelski that was a warning sign and she said nothing even when Alses mentioned taking the locket to her Master. Kelski didn't want the strangers to know what she was, in any respect, because her whole life she'd been judged not good enough or simplistic by people that considered themselves her betters and that was as far from the truth as possible.

The pale inhuman doctor seemed nice enough. So too did the other red-head. Kelski wondered if she was related to Azira. Khara? The Sea Eagle wanted to talk to her as well, but not now… not until she’d got a bit more information out of the shadows and got to know them better. They were easier for her being less people and more of Akajia’s realm – things she trusted and respected more.

She turned back to them, speaking softly, quietly, knowing what they saw was important. “I don’t know if you hear common well, but the waters of this fountain are doing strange things to the people who drink it." She rubbed at her eyes a moment, noting that they felt strange as she looked at the trio of darkness gathering nearby. She saw them no differently, but Kelski suddenly had the urge to demand of them what she’d never do and push her will onto them.

No.

The Kelvic took a breath, shook her head again, and continued on. “It’s giving people strange powers. It’s making them feel things, burn things, even see things oddly. It’s like it has power and the woman is a clue. I don’t ask you these questions lightly.” The girl said in Maketh, talking to all three of them.

By now the kelvic had left the fountain again, wrung out her skirt, and was sitting on the edge of it near the shadows with no hope of getting dry soon. Kelvic form was feeling more and more appealing.

The rain and lightening muffled her words a bit, but it didn’t stop her from trying to communicate the urgency to them. Their information was invaluable. It moved like a man but was small like a woman. Always covered always hidden, but something that glittered in the sun? Kelski nodded, very interested. Like she’d suspected they had seen something and knew things even if they didn’t know they knew things.

“Your memory is very good. That sounds very important. If you could not see their face though, what glittered on them? Jewelry? Their very skin? Horns? You found them bright and lovely or what was on them bright and lovely that glittered?” Kelski asked carefully and slowly, trying to dissect what the shadows were telling her.

“Umbra, Halo… you are both very clever remembering this much. It’s so much more than I thought we’d know. Thank you.” Kelski knew enough to let the two bicker a bit more, working out their issues with one another before she distracted them again. She would in a moment. But until then there was Orchid.

“Your name suits you, Orchid. You might be smaller but you seem very well spoken and by far more clever than even some of the humans that roam the world here.” Kelski praised, truly impressed with the little shadows ability to communicate. “I’m like you. I don’t interact with them much… these people… but I like to watch and learn. Kelski was sad when Orchid retreated. Of the trio, Orchid was the one she could best relate too and the one that seemed the most intelligent.

“Umbra… Halo… can you tell me what the little figure did when they came here? What they said besides those words?” She asked then decided to make a game of it. “How about you tell me one at a time. Umbra first, then Halo, and the one that can remember the most details I will tell a secret too?” She said, knowing secrets were the language and currency of shadows. “And if you both do well, I’ll tell a secret to you both.” She said quietly, looking sad that Orchid had retreated. But she didn’t want to leave the little shadow out. “And if you can get Orchid to play, I will give you a third secret to keep close to your hearts about me. Okay?” The Kelvic said, knowing she had few secrets but there were big ones she didn’t really want anyone to know. They would pay the shadows well if she got enough valuable information from them. That is… if the shadows wanted to play.
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[Spring Quest] Rigor Samsa

Postby Izuyanai on April 11th, 2016, 5:45 am

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The statue's expression seemed to glow as Izuyanai gazed upon it but it soon faded as one by one, the volunteers stepped out of the waters. It was Azira's friendly call and the more alarming crack of lightning that brought her back from her reverie. Bright light briefly illuminated their surroundings before receding back into the cloud cover.

"Hm? Oh, of course," she answered and waded over to the edge of the fountain where she was passed over a locket for inspection.

Flipping open the locket revealed the same woman gazing back at her. Clearly this mystery was revolving around her. The raven let her finger brush lightly over the script and read aloud, "It says, 'Love is to feel, what knowledge cannot know.' A nice sentiment, no? Do you recognize this verse from anywhere, Budo?"

Izuyanai tangled the delicate chain in her fingers and made to place it in the hand of the next inspector as she looked back around at the statue.

"Do you think all of us stepping inside the fountain would be worth a try? It might seem strange, but I have a feeling that's what she would like." Gesturing toward the benign statue, she looked back to read the other's expressions.

Catching sight of Khara wavering out of the corner of her eye, Izuyanai leapt forward to try and steady her.

"What's wrong?" she questioned with a concern shading her expression.
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[Spring Quest] Rigor Samsa

Postby Thomas Cosa on April 12th, 2016, 12:26 pm

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Thomas' consciousness floated in the Chavi. Etheral threads, connecting the entirety of existence, swished and flitted around him, a sensitive to his curiosity. They teased him with whispers, with their vibrant colors, each a promise of a history of a living person.

The group around him was brighter than the rest, more obvious and near. Each threatened to spill it's secrets. Kelski's, her thread singing her name, was perhaps one of the most interesting. It muddled together, a clump of thread that spread out generously across the city, and perhaps the world. It shined like a pearl, a white colored with rainbow. Thomas almost forgot why he was there, tempted to steal a look, just a glance.

Until he saw something better.

It was exponentially simpler than the rest, an easily idetifiable cylinder of memories. Or memory. The entire length of it's thread strung so tightly, that it coallasced into an almost perfect shape. It was brighter, shiner, somehow more present than any of the others. Thomas thought it especially interesting that it's thread didn't spread out to the others, to the world like some of his partners. It's a sign, She was showing him this, he decided, completely confident in his faith. This was what he was supposed to see.

The desire to see it was more than enough, and it broke apart, wrapping around him as the environment changed once again.

It was summer, he knew because the memory knew, and it was a beautiful evening. The stars twinkled, winking at him from a navy sky, the moon large and full and generous with it's light. Thomas knew he was atop the Sharai, because of the same reasons he knew that it was summer, and that the two people drinking in the twilight views were lovers. For this moment, in this memory, he knew everything.

They laughed to each other, whispered fevered promised of their love and it's grandiosity. They kissed eagerly and openly, with complete disregard of the public space. He smiled, his mood colored by theirs, a contagious happiness, a delicious peace with the world. This moment to them, and to Thomas now, was perfect. The man's arm was red, like the ruby that Stranger held. Isur. The word came to him instantly, long before he remembered Ialari and her own arm, the mark of their kind.

"I would do anything for you," he promised, his voice heavy with desire and intention. Thomas knew that at least, then, he meant every word he said. She laughed, a sweet, airy timbre, her voice all light and life. He knew that she was this man's world, and he loved her more than Thomas had ever felt about anything.

And then it ended. The memory blinked from him, the Chavi dispersing like smoke before a storm, the world back like it was when he'd left.

He admired the statue's face, knowing now how'd she looked in life, her eyes laurel pinpricks of emotion, once holding all her love for the man who'd surely carved this statue. Would have Avalis shown him the memory otherwise? It was important, and obviously connected to the fountain. He'd give what information he was sure of now, and hold the rest for later.

Thomas was still flushed with their passion, warmed by their loved when Izuyanai suggested they all step into the fountain. He didn't acknowledge the idea with anything other than his cooperation: he walked over to the fountain, stripping himself of his shoes and socks, carefully rolling his pants as he stepped inside. Wrapped by foreign emotion or not, he wasn't about to wet his clothes. The wizard was poor enough as it was, and wouldn't waste his money to buy new shoes.

"She loved a man, an Isur with a red arm. I don't know how old this fountain is, but the Isur live long, don't they? Perhaps we might be able to find him, or someone he knew him?," he paused, pressing a finger to his lips in thought. The Isur was obviously still alive, or he wouldn't had seen the memory at all, unless someone in the group had seen them together? And even then, despite his inclination to think the Isur had constructed the statue, he had no concrete proof. The memory was only that, and he was still to unused to the Chavi to dive in again. It was always a risk, the temptation to stay and gleam the histories of the currently living. "Are they even that common here, Isur? I haven't seen any since my arrival, so surely, he would be easy to find?," he asked, only then thinking, "If this man still lives in the city."

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[Spring Quest] Rigor Samsa

Postby Veldrys on April 12th, 2016, 12:34 pm

The Symenestra briefly halted his search as lightning lashed across the sky, followed by thunder. It had been a while since he had seen such a thunderstorm. For a moment he found himself transported back to the Denval and the djed storm that had destroyed his beloved home. It didn’t make any sense that he remembered it now, and yet he could not push the face of his beloved bondmate away. They had been forced to flee the city on ships. Lucette had never been the same again after they had left the city behind.

He shook his head and turned back to his inspection. Everything seemed to be relatively ordinary. The fountain seemed to be self-sustaining, but there was something. There were pipes. They were simply well hidden. He turned to the Ethaefal with the strangely scared face – Alses? Had that been her name? – and informed her, “There are pipes. The things that the fountain does may be magical in nature, but the fountain itself seems to have been constructed by normal means. Asking Lucis and Lucis might still be of use. As for the auras you seem to have noticed around the base of the fountain – would it be possible to remove the statue and see what is under it? If there are things buried under it as you have implied, removing them might at least keep more people from suffering the effects of the water.”

His words were directed as much at Alses as at Budo whom he still did not trust entirely. He was about to take a look at the locket as well and comment on what Izuyanai and Thomas had said – it would be a good idea to try and find the Isur, if he was still alive - when he noticed that Khara didn’t seem to be feeling well. He immediately rushed to her side as well. He nodded at Izuyanai who also tried to help before he raised his hand, signaling the other members of the group to please stay away from the patient. It wouldn’t be good if there were suddenly half a dozen people, most of them incompetent, trying to play doctor and overwhelming the patient.

He did not know how to read auras nor could he speak to invisible creatures, but this was something that he could help with. He wrapped an arm around the woman, hoping that she would not mind a Symenestra’s touch and gestured for her to take a seat at the edge of the fountain. She didn’t look as if she should be walking around or even standing.

“Can you tell me what happened …?”
He hesitated for a moment as he tried to remember her name. “… Khara? Are you hurt or in pain?” As he asked those questions, he took a closer look at her to see if she had any external wounds. Was she bleeding? Was there anything wrong with her eyes? Did she seem to be dizzy? What had happened to her? Had the magic of the fountain been at work here or had she perhaps overgiven?
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[Spring Quest] Rigor Samsa

Postby Khara on April 18th, 2016, 9:15 pm

The locket proved beautiful, far more so than Khara had initially realized. The green coppery feeling was inviting. It felt like the first spring days that Thunder Bay had been opened, or at least as much as she could compare it to anything she had experienced. It was warm and pretty and...

Then there was something else. Overwhelming and glorious in it's own right. The locket seemed to call back to her but the new experience that the fountain's powers granted her couldn't be ignored. This time, it was like staring into the sun and it started off almost like being bathed in Syna's light directly. But then it shifted, so quickly that Khara hadn't even the time to grasp what she was fully experiencing. Sadness. So much sadness. The Inarta was barely aware of the slight gasp that left her lips as pain shot through her head. She thought she heard someone ask after her but the sorrow was all encompassing.

She was falling, losing her footing as every part of her mind seemed to scream at her in agony. One of her hands shot up to cover her right eye and her palm pressed to it tightly even as Veldrys guided her to sit at the fountain's edge. The sudden intense pain had only done one bit of kindness, and that was to finally halt her uncontrolled auristic senses. Her own, far more typical ones came back slowly but the coppery taste lingered on her tongue. Tears had begun to streak down her face and she wiped at them as if barely aware of the action.

A winced glance was cautiously given to Alses. It had come from her hadn't it? Though still struggling to get past the headache that now firmly had planted itself behind her eyes and slight blur to her vision, Khara's pained look turned to one of sympathy for the horned woman. Gods... what was she? How could anyone live such a life?

It took a few moments for Khara to come to the full realization she was being tended to by the Symenestra doctor. Initial instinct was to recoil away from his touch but the situation wouldn't allow her much more than a slight shying away from him.

"I... I will to be okay. I looked at something too far." Her words came out mumbled, slightly slurred as she still worked through the haze of pain. "Th-the locket," her attention tried to grasp at what they had all been doing. "It- It hangs on to something, I think. Happiness? Yes. I think so."

A small wave of nausea threatened her and Khara was forced to take a deep breath or two before an attempt was made to answer Veldrys' inquiries. "I have bad head hurt, but is will be fine. S-Someone said to go and find someone who is good with jewelry, yes? I will go with, maybe safer such ways. See if we can find who made it. See if they know about this..." Khara paused to try and remember what she had hazily heard Thomas mention. "Isur? What is Isur?"

"Nari" | "Common" | "Pavi"
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