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Thomas and Estrellir meet for another Auristics lesson.

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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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Postby Estrellir Konrath on May 15th, 2016, 3:38 pm

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Estrellir went unusually still as he explained the sweet whispers. It sounded like that irresistible thirst after periods of drinking more than was good, after testing the effects of the latest plaything every Dynast was raving about. That hunger for more, that trick of the mind that her body needed whatever it was to survive. So, even though Thomas had mentioned worse symptoms, Estrellir knew just how seriously she had to take overgiving.

The remark about writing assignments almost escaped her attention and was pushed aside in favor of more interesting topics. The Konti grinned. “There are many kinds of tea, both strong and weak, soothing and arousing. Still, it’d be a pity if what you said was true. There seem to be many different establishments around though, surely one of them could offer more exotic entertainment?”

As they walked away from the tower, Estrellir finished stuffing her pipe and lit it with the routine of an experienced smoker. Tilting her head back, she released the first blueish cloud with a content sigh. The Konti had a good idea of how her habits appeared to others – a weakness, relying on substances to calm her down. They didn’t know it was her decision though. A choice, every time.

Of course, the inn would be called Shooting Star. Estrellir gestured. “Of course. If nothing else, I’m curious what you deem an interesting crowd. But do tell, how long have you been here and where are you from originally?”

They arrived at the inn soon enough, unmistakably the large building with white pillars and star-shaped ornaments. Even the interior was all whites and rich golds, almost blinding her. As they had arrived after the midday rush, halfway into noon rest, most tables were empty. Estrellir, having extinguished her pipe prior to entering, carefully put it back into her pocket and sat.

When the waiter approached, she went for a light lunch and an entire bottle of wine (to share, obviously), inquiring about available brands. Eventually she settled on his recommendation, the house wine, and turned back to Thomas. “I hope you’ll forgive me if I don’t know how to go from here. Improvisation seems to be a major part of this idea. Observation too, although there aren’t many people here now…”


Receipt :
lunch - 3 kina
wine bottle - 10 kina
= 13 kina

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Postby Thomas Cosa on May 18th, 2016, 12:27 pm

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"I'm from Syliras, originally. Which might explain why I find the people here so...different. But, if I'm being honest, to an Aurist, anyone is interesting. Or, their aura is, anyway," Thomas offered her a lazy smile, his head propped up his his hands, elbows sprawled awkwardly -- impolitely -- over the oak wood table. His mood had changed to a happier fatigue as they settled in, more dreamy than tired. Ever since he'd lost his trust in his magic, he'd found solace in other vices: liquor, mainly. Despite his earlier complaints, and while he wished for something with a bit more kick, Lhavit's wine did the job easily enough.

"People, at least most, maintain some kind of façade," He started, his eyes lingering over the kitchen doors, hoping for a quick return of their server, "You'll notice, especially at the beginning of your training, that this, unfortuntately, carries over to their auras. The better people are at keeping their faces calm, their voices sturdy and unbroken, so too are their auras harder to read than a more expressive person," he shrugged, a simple truth that couldn't be overcome. Of course, if everyone's aura was so easy to read, than Thomas imagined there would be more Aurist. "The better you get, the easier these aura untangle, obviously. A master Aurist will probably spend as much time deciphering someone with a stone's temper as much as they would someone a bit more fiery, you understand."

Thomas opened his mouth to continue, only to catch a flicked of movement to his left; their server, carrying a tray of glasses and a single bottle of wine. The wizard hadn't asked, but he assumed they would be sharing - not that he ever acknowledged anything wasn't for him. It was his nature, to assume the world and everything in it was his already.

He smiled, the gesture more hungry than grateful, as the server poured the wine into the glass. The liquid, as red and vivid as blood, spilled wonderfully against the transparent cup, dancing and marking it's every touch as it balanced around. Thomas reached out for one, tilting it back and fro, something he'd picked up from watching people around the Inn. The wizard wasn't exactly sure why they did, only that they did it, and that he wasn't going to risk being see as anything less, and so he did the exact same. Stupid, he knew, but still.

"Anyway, once you learn how to get past the initial wall," he continued, his voice renewed and refreshed with each sip, "Then you get the real show," Thomas nodded towards a couple, two young men, tentatively holding hands between a shared bottle of something bubbly and white, "Them, for instance. I've seen them before," he said, his voice lowering to a knowing whisper, "Lovers, but that's obvious enough. What you don't know is how much they're in love. Or lust," Thomas giggled, already tired, the wine was already coloring his cheeks, "Their auras practically ravish each other. Pushing and pulling, violent reds, passionate pinks and an overwhelming sense of orgasm. It gets too much, and then they leave for a room," he paused briefly, allowing himself a longer sip.

"What I'm getting at is how much more you'll see of the world. I mean, having Avalis' favor, you already know, but Auristics adds a certain color that wasn't there before. It's like....it's like...," Thomas hesitated, caught in his own thoughts as he lumped together a metaphor, "Like having a painting without color, only to suddenly have the color added after you see it the first time. You see it all before, the color only makes it more, you understand?" He asked, hoping his explanation landed.

"You should try. Don't look at them, it would be much too obvious now, but pick someone else. Or another couple. Tell me what you see with your eyes, try and get to know them, and then maybe a spell, if you can manage," Thomas said, more of an order than a request.

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Postby Estrellir Konrath on May 26th, 2016, 10:41 pm

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Ah, Syliras… Estrellir had heard enough about it to suspect it was where that feeling came from, that subtle vibe she got from Thomas. Stiffness? Propriety? Something like it.

He would probably prefer observing strangers instead of analyzing his own demeanor though, so she let her gaze drift around the room obediently. Nodding along (for he wasn’t saying anything new), she spotted a charcoal cat snoozing next to a trunk in the corner. Recalling earlier teachings, Estrellir supposed it had an aura too, but one too hard to read for a beginner.

When the server returned, she grinned at his hungry smile, not unlike her own hunger for something different. As expected, the server poured and Estrellir let the wine settle for a bit before picking up her glass. She didn’t flinch at the taste, but wasn’t impressed. It’d do.

Thomas seemed perfectly at ease after just a few sips though (cute or pathetic, she didn’t know), continuing with his lecture about what Auristics did. Only as they glanced at the pair of lovers together, it turned into less of a lecture, but more of a demonstration. One where Estrellir still couldn’t see the object that was demonstrated, an increasingly frustrating state. Love, lust. Was it even possible to tell one from the other? If all the poets and minstrels had never figured out the answer, mages couldn’t have.

The image colored his words in her ears though, and her grin widened. “Thomas, I think you’re in love.” A sharp laugh, a sip of dark wine. “But yes, it makes sense. It’s the knowledge you gain of things and people. I imagine it also shapes the way they see you… if you let them know, of course.” Divination colored her view of the world too, sometimes to a point that estranged her from others. Naturally, her twice and thrice marked sisters were even less of the world, but master Aurists would likely be the same. It all came down to what they did with all that knowing.

Estrellir wasn’t sure what he meant with his careless words, a spell, but decided to simply obey instead of ask. Swirling her wine, she took a big sip and then scanned the room. Two other tables had been claimed in the meantime. One was occupied by a woman with glossy black braids and proud gestures and a girl, possibly around ten, whose fiery hair spilled over her shoulders in wild cascades. The stark contrast between the two was fascinating, but after some time, the similarities became apparent too. Sunkissed skin. Hands that moved quickly and freely to accentuate words. The shape of their eyes. “The woman and girl. Despite what it looks like, I think they must be related.”

So far, so good. The secrets behind their words (she wasn’t close enough to eavesdrop), their gestures, facial expressions and overall body language. That and the elusive thing that surrounded them, that was visible only in auras. Without quite realizing, Estrellir continued voicing her observations. “The woman is irritated. It’s probably something the girl has done or said… wait, no. She’s straight as a rod, if it was that easy, she’d scold the girl and be done with it. As for the girl, she belongs to the woman. Obviously, she’s probably too young to survive on her own. But there’s stubborn resistance in her spine. They don’t really get along, but they can’t do anything about it.” She cocked her head, completely lost in the moment. “The woman’s problem should be the key, but what is it?”

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Postby Thomas Cosa on May 28th, 2016, 12:45 pm

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"Love?" Thomas echoed, stretching the word out to two syllabus. Luh vah. It sounded strange, both foreign and familiar, as it bubbled from his lips. "Maybe, although I would say obsession is more likely," he shrugged, tilting his lip back, the last of the sultry red liquid plunging into his throat. "Magic will do that to you, it does it with everyone. Some might call it a passion, or love, but I know better. You will know better, as my student," he paused, considering whether not he wanted more wine or not. It was a quick decision as he reached out for the bottle, careful and deliberate as he poured himself another glass. "You will obsess over magic, over auras. You'll learn when the obsession becomes too dangerous, and when you should pause in your castings. And you will know never to confuse your feelings about magic with love."

He nodded as she picked her couple, a woman and child, a familial relation between the two she suspected. Thomas agreed, picking up on her suggestions. Despite the differences in their hair coloring, one brown and bland in comparison to the younger of the two, whose hair was adorned in crimson fire. The way they danced at each other, passioned gestures thrown wildly about, and something about their eyes, both narrowed and sharp. Estrellir had the mind for Auristics, of that he was sure, but Thomas had yet discovered how to unlock her magical potential. The wizard hoped this exercise might do it.

"You are observant," his mouth curved happily at the remark, "It's always better to develop that before you dive into Auristics, as catching the subtle nuances of each emotion is difficult enough so the more observant you are the better. So, the question remains, what has the girl done? Try and focus on her body language, she's stiff yes, but is she looking at her presumptive mother? Don't they both seem a bit tense?" he asked, hoping to lead her. He'd caught the young girl lifting a few kina from some of the drunker clients before, himself included. He wondered if she'd stolen something a bit more importance from someone a bit more dangerous from their average client.

"And remember, the moment anything happens, magical of course, tell me. It will be difficult to handle, but trust me that while it'll be shocking, a bit scary perhaps, we will be able to control it." Thomas offered a small smile as he nodded, encouraging her to continue.

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Postby Estrellir Konrath on May 30th, 2016, 5:43 pm

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Estrellir sipped lazily as he spoke. By then, she was getting used to his hymns and odes (as she was beginning to call them), but didn’t mind them one bit. The rich taste of wine mixed with his words as if to crystallize their meaning. When he ended, she only uttered a single word. “Yes.” There was nothing else to say.

Now, the woman and girl. If Thomas complimented her, she was too focused on them to take note. It was clever of him to remind her though, to correct her focus. Their relationship, yes, but more importantly, emotions would be visible in their auras. Eyes narrowed to slits, Estrellir tried not to think of magic, instead she continued observing the pair. The girl was in the middle of a speech, gesturing and attacking her mother with rapid fire words. Such a sharp little tongue. “Apparently she wants to prove something, to convince her mother of something. She thinks she’s right, but her mother is hesitant. It… it must be a moral question they disagree on. The girl has…”

She trailed off, too enamored to describe what she was seeing. It was her Konti gift that had thrust their blood relation upon her mind, but then something else happened. Strange and foreign, like the gritty taste of distant lands between her teeth and the exotic smell of incense in her nose. As she stared and stared at the girl, her appearance seemed to change. For a mere tick, the color drained from her hair and ice blue sparks flickered before her vision.

Estrellir blinked. The sparks were there, dancing around the girl, so closely that they seemed to mix with her hair and eclipse its vibrant hue. The longer she stared, the better she understood their pattern and what it told about the girl. “She has taken from others. Her mother doesn’t approve, but the girl is convinced she’s done the right thing. A good thing, for both of them. There are pale blue sparks around her head, conviction. Violet and blue stains, the things that she’s taken. They look like dirt because she’s only acquired them recently, they don’t belong to her yet.”

Suddenly the colors became blinding light, hurting her eyes. Forced to look away, she glimpsed a reddish haze around Thomas. Blinking it away didn’t work. “I might be getting a headache. Tell me, why is it so bright?”

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Postby Thomas Cosa on May 31st, 2016, 11:51 am

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Thomas was to distracted by the delicious scarlet water inside his cup to realize Estrellir had managed a spell; he was blind without his magic, painfully so. The wizard nodded absentmindedly as the Konti observed the woman and the child, his cheeks all the rosier, colored by the wine. He wondered at the acidic bite, the heavy memory it left on his tongue, not all together unpleasant, but not entirely satisfactory either.

"Tangy," he thought, swishing the liquid in between his teeth, "Riverfall, they had wine, didn't they?" Thomas recalled the city, sundrenched white stone, the sounds of seabirds echoing all over the place. He heard Estrellir begin to speak, something about the two they were watching, and Thomas really couldn't be bothered to pay attention. He looked disappointedly into his cup, wishing instead it was whiskey or vodka, or even one of those pretty neon drinks he saw during the odd festival he was unlucky enough to stumble on -- it was then, of course, he realized that the Konti was going on about colors.

"Shyke," he swore, loudly, fumbling his grasp on his own magic as it soared away from him, the spell enveloping the Konti as he tried to understand her current situation. Purple fire burned away at her core, the electric tingle of magic polluting everything. Everything was too bright, a panic contained in a single person, and it burned as his spell, at him, even, as Thomas pushed his magic forward. "You're overgiving, I think," he said, only just realizing that he hadn't ever observed someone overgiving, only the overgiven, so perhaps, if they were lucky, he was wrong.

Still, it dawned on him that he wasn't exactly prepared to deal with overgiving, and he suspected no one here was as well.

Struck with inspiration, Thomas decided to throw his own pebble right at her. Before he gave himself a second to check if he even bothered to hit his target, the animator threw his wine at her, cup and all, as panic over took him. He reached to grab the bottle, deciding a good smack to the head might bring her out of it, when he was struck with common sense.

"Is everything alright now? You should stick to things that aren't quite so sentient, perhaps, at least for now," he wavered, the bottle still cold in his hand. If she was still babbling, it would only take a quick swing to knock her out -- and then there was the matter of getting her to that damned Catholicon, if he could even manage that.

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Postby Estrellir Konrath on May 31st, 2016, 5:21 pm

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As she watched, the red haze around his head thickened, bleeding into crimson and swirling around his brow like brilliantly colored smoke. Usually the color would’ve been beautiful, but in that case, it only seemed to fill her eyes with searing pain. The meaning of that haze registered only in part of her mind – it was the fuzzy warmth of alcohol, of course, that clouded his thoughts – while the rest was screaming at her to close her eyes.

She did, but the colors didn’t disappear. Rainbow sparks seemed to be dancing at the back of her lids even as she pressed the balls of her hands to them. Together with white lightning from the pressure, it reminded her of sunlight refracted through a diamond. “I can still see it… why doesn’t it go away? I want it to go away!” A different kind of person would’ve begged, but Estrellir wasn’t used to saying please.

After all the talk about power and responsibility, she knew there had to be a way to escape the colors… she simply didn’t know it yet. The pain made it impossible to think clearly and analyze the situation, so she simply willed it to stop with every fiber of her being. As if to mock her, it didn’t. “Over… giving…” Of course, it had to be, but knowing the term didn’t help.

The moment she curled into herself, trying to protect herself in that instinctive gesture, something small and hard hit her temple. It didn’t hurt, not compared to the pain in her head, but it surprised her enough to prompt a tiny pause. Then, liquid and the noise of shattering glass. When Estrellir looked up, her hair was dripping and spicy liquid running down her face. The alcohol stung in her eyes... but nothing else. As she looked at the shattered cup on the floor, then back at Thomas, she slowly came to realize the blinding colors had disappeared from her vision. The headache hadn’t, but with its catalyst gone, it had shrunk a bit at least.

She combed through her hair with trembling fingers. “Most likely. I don’t see them anymore. There’s the headache, but it’s bearable for now.” When the waiter came to clean up the shards and wine puddle, she asked for a glass of water and left the apology to Thomas. He'd broken the cup, after all. Once the man had left, she turned back to the wizard and grinned a little, remembering what she’d seen on him. “I’m assuming it was just the shock of seeing auras for the first time? I’ll be able to control how much I see of what, right?”

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Postby Thomas Cosa on June 5th, 2016, 2:53 pm

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Thomas' magic flexed around her aura, instinctive as it combed through her dazzling echo, fresh scars of magic rotting the color purple deep into her soul. He felt more open, he breathed easier, his magic free. Thomas knew it was a risk, but he was a silly drunk, and thought his time spent with Alses and Vick might have his little voiding hiccups under control. Perhaps, he reasoned, everything was better now; safe, even.

"Control? Well...," Thomas shrugged, not entirely sure how to phrase that, no, he didn't think she would have perfect control. He hadn't expected her to overgive, or even if he had, he hadn't expected the overgiving to be so painful. "Probably, not, I mean, you've only just started. That's also why you have the pebble, remember? People, or anything sentient, you might want to avoid casting around them. You're just beginning, so it's much easier for their auras to flood your sense, you understand?" The wizard explained, hoping she would understand. He was only just realizing that he'd done a shoddy job at teaching her. Hopefully, she'd be understanding -- he was only beginning this teaching thing.

He allowed her to digest the information before continuing, his magic scouring her aura for anything permanent. The purple was fading, no longer violent or offensive, instead becoming a softer hue, like twilight, a sun-kissed pink/purple. The buzz of magic warmed to a hum, the whole of Estrellir becoming calmer. He wondered, though, once she realized she was stuck with the pebble, what would her reaction be? Nothing good, he bet.

"Should you practice with the pebble enough, I'll see the magic grow in your aura. If you've developed enough, next time, we might try looking at a rabbit. A dog, even," Thomas offered, nodding encouragement, not only at Estrellir but at himself. How clever, he thought himself, for thinking of an animal. They had interesting enough auras, and emotion wasn't foreign to them -- hopefully, not enough to where it would flood Estrellir's magic.

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Postby Estrellir Konrath on July 26th, 2016, 7:42 pm

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Estrellir blinked as a glass of water was placed in front of her, still sluggish and slow. The water was cool to the touch though and she pressed it against her brow for a moment before taking a sip. Then she directed her full attention back to what Thomas had said, digesting. “You should’ve told me before we started trying to read people in this restaurant. We were obviously going somewhere with people around, you could’ve warned me before.” She sighed. “I could’ve deduced as much from the pebble, but I can’t step out of my own skin and watch from a distance. You’re the teacher.”

The headache blunted some of the edge, yet the accusation remained. Why hadn’t he told her? Judging from the state he’d come to class in, she could understand why he had been thoughtless, she could even forgive him for getting her in danger. Overgiving! What she wanted was for him to confide and to offer an explanation, he was still the one to blame. Although younger, Thomas was supposed to guide her. With knowledge came responsibility.

A sliver of irritation rose to the surface. As soon as the matter was settled, however, it’d sink back into violet depths. Pebble it was. After that first exquisite taste, that delicious hors d’oeuvre, Estrellir ached for more, wanted to drown again. At the same time, her rational side (that far outweighed her reckless one, no matter what others said) cautioned against too much too fast. The headache was still pounding behind her temples like a whole cavalry of warhorses, a painful reminder.

Yes, she understood the need for the small steps. Pebble, rabbit, dog. “What about cats? I’m planning to adopt one or two. After the rabbit, it’d be good practice, no? Also, now that I’ve had a glimpse, how do we proceed? What kind of practice regimen did you have in mind?”

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Postby Thomas Cosa on August 15th, 2016, 8:08 am

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Thomas' lips pursed at her irritation, violet blooms streaking across the delicate surface of the Konti's aura; a shallow emotion, and one, Thomas knew, would pass quickly. Still, she deserved an explanation, even if it wasn't an entirely honest one.

"Overgiving is always the hardest lesson to teach, but luckily you managed with anything permanent damage," he chewed his lip, in thought, considering his lie. It was, he told himself, good that she'd fell into overgiving somewhere he could help her, and so early in her training. Thomas expected that she would be more wary with her use in magic, but that was something they could whittle away at during her training. No use in practicing magic to only stop at every risk. "You'll remember this, always. Auristics, while a safe magic, can do a number on your brain, on your soul, same as any other," he nodded in a way that he hoped was wise, but he was drunk, so he wasn't entirely sure if he managed to nod at all.

"And as for practice, I suggest guessing the colors of the pebble. You should know it well enough by know that you can guess the meaning of whatever your Auristics show you. After a few days, when you feel comfortable, try a plant, or bug," Thomas suggested with an air on non-chalance, as he sipped his drink. "The more intelligent something is, the more magical, the larger and more tempting it's aura. Prettier, you understand."

"We might be done for today, unless you have any other questions?

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