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Introduction to Arcane & Metaphysical Theory 1000
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Fliss
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 9:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To say Fliss was amazed was a bit of an understatement. She sat there, clutching her little De-light, trying not to burn with embarrassment over trying to make something real from it, and watched in absolute fascination as first Andu, and then Layla, did just that. And listened to the way her mind worked with each of them.

A chess set needed at least one other person to play, so Andu's chosen dream was clearly a social one. Perhaps a little competitive, but filled with the complex ins and outs of a game that required a good grasp on strategy and logic. Maybe the kind of dream you have when you're trying to work out what happens next in the real world while you sleep.

Layla's door, though ... Fliss stared at it. For a start, it was huge. And it reminded her of the doors she sometimes saw in her nightmares; doors she didn't dare to open for fear of what was on the other side. But she could just be projecting her thoughts there. Just because she found Layla a little creepy, it didn't mean there was anything sinister about her chosen dream, or the object she chose to manifest from it. It might just be a door, with nothing unpleasant on the other side at all.

Biting her lip, Fliss looked down at the De-light in her hand, trying to focus her mind. The last thing she wanted to do was manifest a fully naked clone of her boyfriend in the classroom, but there wasn't a lot else to work with in there. Unless ...

Smiling in relief as a way out presented itself to her, she concentrated fiercely, holding out one hand, palm up, as she closed her eyes. The shape formed in her mind; she knew exactly what it looked like, exactly what it felt like, how heavy, how textured, how big. Here in Dream, she didn't need to fear that it would be a replica made of flame. Here, it would be as real as she could make it.

And there it was. She opened her eyes, her bright smile reflecting her delight at finding a fully formed feather on her palm. Long and white, the quill was sharp, the pointed end coated in down that became straighter and harder along the length of the feather. It wasn't curved, as most people would expect from a bird's feather, but then, this feather didn't come from a bird. This feather came from Lucas, one of his primaries, and she sincerely hoped he never found out about this entire experience.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 8:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ammy had rejoined the class, the voice of Proffessor D'Arcstorm a whisper in her ears as it was with the other students, instructing, explaining and encouraging the next step of the lesson during the field trip. The slightly dense field of air dogging her steps and hovering behind her, soft thumps of booted feet as it followed her on to the classroom floor. She missed the sound of the thumps as her golden eyes drank in the 3D chess set of Andu, enjoying the details of each piece and the three tiered board. Layla's door begged for Ammy to open it and go inside to explore the unknown, take up the old mantle of the weapon she once was, throw caution and parenthood to the wind and revel in glory of hot young blood and adrenaline. The feather Fliss held drew curiosity from Ammy as if she were the fabled cat in the story about curiosity and demise. Ammy took her turn and hoped that fashioning something simple from a child wouldn't be looked down upon as naive.

Ammy closed her eyes and took a slow centering breath. Her minds eye settled on the frozen scene before her, decisions being made and discarded on what to bring from the dream until she had her answer. The strongest thing that stood out to her senses the most besides her daughter was the blanket. How could she not recall it?

Five days of walking 5 months pregnant, through stores with Fleety to find the right hue of dark orchid purple to go with the deep pink in a yarn weight that was warm but soft like my own fur to comfort Ruby on cold days. The feel of the yarn kept me company through the long nights of discomfort when Jake, Mabel and Ruby wouldn't settle down for a week in my belly and all I could do was lay around and crochet that blanket for my sweet little daughter to come. The first day seeing such warm, living colors swaddling my human child for warmth while her siblings fought to be cool with their natural born fur. A blanket that had mamma's weight and smell to it, the right kind of weight that let her know mother held you and feeling of softness like fur. The whispery rustle of it as it moved over wood floor or carpet, the little crinkle cracks as it made tiny pops of static electricity. The smell of my daughter on it no matter how many times it was washed and the well frayed and fringed look it was now getting from being her princess cape.

As Ammy recalled, dialed in and relieved memories from her senses just by the sight of that blanket, the orchid purple and deep pink striped yarn blanket was soon draping over her shoulders, neck and outstretched forearms that she held out as if holding the blanket. Her muzzle twitched a bit as her eyes remained closed.

The smell of mud, grass, weeds and endless days of sand and beach mingled among the smells of Ruby and the blanket. The scent of bird feathers with a light, almost ticklish yet sneezy like haze to it floated over her nose. The smell of cinnamon candy, clove soda, and a hint of stolen perfume from her own closet tied things together in her minds eye and she looked in that De Light from the blanket, a gift from mother to daughter to the very worn and well loved stuffed toy dog Ruby held. So well loved that it was a solid shade of gray no longer a two tone husky that was once named Tin-Tin. A gift from her eldest daughter to her youngest daughter, the scents on the toy bring sharply to mind Myrlene. Her eldest child, wild, strong, stubborn like her mother, proud and successful. Always dogged by chaos as well, the stalwart companion of the little winged hellion was Tin-Tin. Any adventure she was on, the poor thing was drug through, dropped, tossed, rolled in or lost once, maybe twice but always recovered. A decent weight for a stuffed animal, enough to let a child feel they owned a real puppy but never enough to grow too tired from carrying but more than enough to sock a sibling in the muzzle if annoyed. The curly tail was extra curly, having thirty extra stitches to sew it back on after a mishap with a pretend pirate raid while someone was trying to hide mamma's fabric scissors. Tin-Tin had been washed so many times little of the original faux fur was left, and yet the smell of fire, ash, metal and leather oil pervaded. The little thing had seen it all in the family, from happy days to dark nights. Myrlene believed nothing could harm the person who held Tin-Tin. Tin-Tin the Brave, last seen with her grandson Calcifer Spiritor. That was the sand and the ocean she smelled, she remembered that day. He had dropped it in the water the day ...

In her held out hands, a very worn out, well loved on Siberian Husky stuffed toy about two feet long and bare of most fur, very gray from a hard life of being loved on, appeared. It's scratched up clear blue eyes gazed into eternity in a forever look of friendship and happiness. It's tail curled unnaturally tight as the the seams from repair showed quite well with the fur mostly rubbed away. Behind her though, that slightly thickened air began to solidify behind her into something towering and darkly armored.

... the Ebony Knight ambushed us during our family vacation and took Calcifer as a shield and hostage, to force me to watch the cruel Champion of Chaos to just walk away while I could do nothing. The sun couldn't shine at all on that black armor, it just seemed to be soaked in like a black hole letting nothing out that struck that surface. The air around the being was winter in the middle of a sunny summer beach. Glowering violet eyes that felt like a wall slamming into me thrown by a tornado. His voice echoing and rattling from the armor like a bag of bricks shoved into a washing machine. Armor that was smooth but burned hot then cold to the touch when I came to blows with him and the tail he had, tipped with that ceremonial dagger shaped like a silver scorpion stinger that filled the body with ice cold venom. I got too close to him and gagged on the stench of the rotting lich king he had defeated and unceremoniously took up residence in the tainted dead city. A palpable, spine crawling hum and pressure to the air whenever he gazed or walked me way. The white hot pain of his thorn like lance picking apart muscle and bone of my shoulder the day we met again ...

Behind Ammy now stood the Ebony Knight in full, unnerving detail. Clad in black armor from head to toe that soaked up light, reflected nothing and held metal work long lost to the ancients before man lived. A long, feline tail flowed behind the Knight, armored in jointed masterwork marvel, tipped by an ornate silver scorpion stinger that dripped a viscous liquid of amber color. Violet eyes burned with intense intelligence and malice at it looked down from it's 7 foot height upon the diminutive 5'7" height of Ammy. A long, wickedly sharp, thorn like lance was held fast in one hand that seemed to tug on the mythical and wondrous if it got too close. The Ebony Knight said not a word as it shot a gauntleted hand forward and wrapped fingers around Ammy's neck lifting her off the ground. Ammy opened her eyes in a moment of startled panic, the stuffed toy and blanket fell to the ground as she twisted like a snake, grabbing onto the armored fore arm in pain as she felt the hot burn from the arm to face the person holding her. She saw the Ebony Knight, her eyes went wide in fear and surprise. The Ebony Knight tightened his grip on her neck making her grunt and choke. She gave his check plate a few kicks as she pulled her mind under control from the panic like a tug of war game.

You cannot be here. I see you. I feel you. But you cannot be here. I know the real you. The real you is not here. Not now, not ever. No longer more will you be either. You're dead, shadow. Dead. Dead. You will hold no more power over me or my dreams. Come, face who you really are ...

The Ebony Knight squeezed harder, creaking of bones being heard from her neck. Ammy forced in a breath and shoved a burned hand out to touch the face plate of the Ebony Knight's helmet. Her eyes half closed from the pain and mostly from her trying to focus on something in her mind.

Before her was her alchemy laboratory in the Alchemist's Fire. Shelves arranged neatly and with care, showing a categorical masterpiece any one suffering OCD would kill for. Among the vials, bottles, potions and canisters of reagents was a space cleared. Sat squarely between vials of Dragon's Bane, Wolf's Bane and Eldrich Nettle sat a cube of clear crystal. 2 feet by 2 feet by 2 feet cubed, it sat and captured the light perfectly, refracting it into rainbows in her workshop, save where light struck the suspended severed head within. Delicate bone structures would say it was a Lupinossai of a desert species, used to hot weather and prone to losing weight often from consumption by magic or disease. The skin was dark grey, gaunt, frail as if the person had once been a promising youth but had thrown away life and vitality for something powerful and draining. A lifeless grimace of acceptance or perhaps a sneer of unanticipated defeat was slit along the muzzle showing white, young teeth. Black hair, long, showed leaching of stress in the white that flowed from the crest of the head to the still black tips of the hair strands. Long, delicate canine ears, notched and scarred from a life of being bullied all framed the staring, lifeless amethyst eyes that seemed to look into the soul and mock it for every flaw it had. This is the Ebony Knight she knew, the pathetic thing that had reached too far, done too much and had brought the doom of her upon him as she held his head free from his body as it toppled from the 200 foot balcony with her only remaining arm. He took her arm, she took his head. Fair trade.

Ammy's hand, seared onto that visor, flipped it up to reveal the suspended head in that cube of crystal, proving that the death of the Ebony Knight was the reality that she remembered. The Ebony Knight crumbled to dark, iron sand, dropping her and the crystal cube to the floor to join the blanket and the stuffed dog toy. Ammy gasped for air and rubbed her throat as her blistered hands began to slowly heal. She didn't look up at anyone. How could she? How should face anyone eye to eye flat on butt, with a child's blanket, a kids toy and the dead eyes of a grizzly war trophy she'd only told her wife and husband about staring at them all. Perhaps it was time she got rid of the head.
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Atticus DArcstorm
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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 8:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Atticus altered Dream again, just slightly, to ensure his voice was audible to all within the 'class', as it were.

"What each of you have now accomplished, has a certain symmetry with the use of magic in the physical, or 'real' world." He had resumed lecture mode. "The main differences are that, here you're granted a much broader range of 'perceived power'," he was throwing a lot of emphasis around on some of the terms he used. He was aware of it. "The 'us' that exists in the physical world have much more limited scopes of powers compared to what we have here. In Dream anything is possible, limited only by imagination, whereas in the real world our magic or our ability to learn magic can be restricted by our faith, our belief, sometimes our genetics or physiology. Moreover, these traits in the people on whom we try to work magic can also determine the potency of it's effects."

"The most important thing to keep in mind, however, are the similarities between what we've done here, and working magic in the physical world. You have used knowledge, faith, and will to change the nature of reality - even if only in a localized field. This is the essence of what we try to accomplish with the arcane, which by definition will appear mysterious to those who do not practice the Craft."

"Though we've only yet begun to explore the world of Dream, we have arrived at the end of today's class. In the few remaining classes we have left, we will be further examining the schools and spheres of magical thought, and which will hopefully end with experimenting with creating rudimentary spells in class. For now, though, due to the apprehension which accompanied this field trip on behalf of some of the faculty concerns, the homework I ask is something that will help both of us learn. Write a paper on how this field trip could have been made better; highlight what the high and low points of it were for you. As always, any additional feedback is also welcome."

“Before I forget, and before we leave,” he reached into a pocket and pulled forth a small vial which radiated vibrant swirling pastels onto his skin – both hand and face. “This is Dreamfire, and it is exceptionally rare. Like heat from a fire already burning, it can be freely harvested from dreams in a raw form that once refined is the only substance capable of working Worldstone. The former,” he held the vial aloft a little more visibly, “Holds within itself the illimitable potential of pure energy, at once every type of energy that exists, and every type of energy that does not. It is the yang to the yin of Worldstone, which is itself a penultimate expression of matter in the same way that almost every culture and world holds one substance to be purer, stronger, and more durable than any other.” How many of them had noticed the occasional pulse of energy from the dreamcatchers in their tethers after harnessing one of the De-lights? “With this excursion I should have just more than enough to craft the badges which, like diplomas, will mark your graduation from this class. Perhaps if there is excess, it may find it's way into the hands of a particularly rewarding student.”

If any cast a glance his way to glean who he might be referring to, they would look a long time. Too many of his pupils had too many rewarding qualities. Choosing one that was particularly rewarding beyond the others would be challenging.

One of his students suddenly had his attention.
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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 8:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

All the Dreams he looked at appealed to him, but not like what he was thinking about. Using Dreams to conjure something appealed to him, too, but not if it had to be something from one of the dream shards – not when he had anything at all that he could create here. It was like the ultimate sketch pad, one that could take a thought or an image directly from the mind and manifest it into 3 dimensional moving artwork. He was sure it was only artwork, and that it wasn't real. Fairly sure, at least, but that was a huge digression.

The thing he'd been thinking about had been in his dreams – well, dreams and reality. It was something he'd spied in the air above the marketplace, and sometimes hovering elsewhere in the city. It was like a suit of armour, black in a way that seemed to drink in the light rather than just refuse to reflect it. Not all black, there was some white filigree in places, most notably in the center of it's chest where he was almost sure there was some kind of flower characterized. The armor was huge as well, near seven feet tall he was sure – though that kind of detail was always imperfect and existed only in his mind. He'd never been close enough to the one that existed in real life to be able to determine it's size.

Suddenly the black knight was in the Dream with them, manifested accidentally, equally by Bastion's attention to his daydreaming, and his inattention to the class coming to an end.

At a height that was only challenged by the Minotaur, and just barely, the Knight cut an imposing figure. It's armor was highly glossy – a corruption of it's true self, and the way it was seen through the eyes of Kincaid. The white flower which adorned it's chest, a rose, seemed to pulsate with a light from within. Most eye catching of all was it's left arm which ended not with a hand, but with an armored talon – a gauntlet of razor sharp blades. It's head raised and regarded Kincaid and the rest of the class with an stare, and to look into the veiled pits of it's eyes was to look into the heavens and see endless dead space in which the stars, the galaxies, and the cosmos float.
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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 8:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The presence of the Knight was not lost on the High Mage, who reacted almost instantly.

Class dismissed.”

He wasn't taking any chances. All the tethers connecting all of the students to Dream seemed to stretch, and elongate, and snap – though the latter sensation didn't accurately depict what happened. The cords were cut, yes, but after the students had been returned to the waking world of the classroom. For the students, it would have been nothing more traumatic than snapping fully awake from a daydream, only to realize that the clocks on the walls had changed – and that class was done for the day.

The only difference from how class usually ended was the fact that the professor wasn't there. Atticus, to any that noticed, hadn't been tethered either. What no one could have known, however, was his reason for not wearing a tether. He wasn't in Dream in the same way that the students were, as he had to travel there in his physical body. For some time now, Atticus could no longer enter Dream as his students could. Atticus could no longer dream.

((OOC: As the late John Geyssen used to say, 'Alrighty then'. So, that was long overdue. Apologies. Profuse, profuse apologies. Just a couple notes on time line. At the end of this class, all the students will find themselves safely deposited in the class room – they're not moving, nor have they ever moved. More the class has moved around them.

I wasn't sure if I should put this in character, or OOC, but I think it fits better here: the next actual 'class', will take place after the protests that took place on campus (yes, that long ago is when the field trip started).
Basically in the intervening time the students would have/will have (complicated tense shifts anyone?) been contacted by the school telling them that classes are on hiatus or what have you. Likewise, students also would be contacted when classes resume.

For the record, I believe there are only two 'lectures' left, and the field trip was always going to be the most difficult part for me to handle, so it should all be downhill from here. Any questions, comments, or concerns – fire me off a PM, and in the meantime feel free to respond as you would in character in the thread.
Alright, I'm sure I'm forgetting something here – but since I'm forgetting it, I'll just leave it out and call it good since this is long overdue. Take care everyone, much love!))
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PostPosted: Fri May 19, 2017 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jerking awake after their extended daydream, Fliss automatically clutched for the dream, which didn't seem to have come with her. The dreamcatcher had, obviously, but she was quick to remove it, leaving the delicate piece on her desk as she packed her bag to head out. As fascinating as the field trip had been, it had left her uneasy. She needed to talk it out with someone.
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PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 11:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Waking from the Dream World had Ammy in slightly fuddled mind pickled in the potent fear of the Ebony Knight spiked with the bitter sweet victory again. Rubbing at her golden eyes a few times, she noticed she was back in the class room, bereft of blanket, plush dog toy and the hideous war trophy she hoped the rest of the class would not remember. Her fingers trailed to the dream catcher that was on her desk that came back with her, her mind at work on whether to take it or leave it. She saw some of the other students regaining senses and noticed Fliss leaving.

Ammy took her own Dream Catcher and put it in her satchel right next to her Barrington Codex. Perhaps it may come in handy should the goddess ever find herself adrift in the Dream World again. Or perhaps it would hang beside a transparent cube as a reminder that she'd won a fight twice. Ammy stood quietly and left the classroom not wanting to add any jarring stimulus to those coming out of the Dream themselves. She had a lot to think on as well.
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PostPosted: Sun May 21, 2017 9:53 pm    Post subject: The Ultimate Darkness Reply with quote

Layla’s head fell forwards slightly and her eyes shot open. She immediately lifted her arm to see if she still wore the armband tether, then rubbed her wrist in its absence. Only because she was facing forwards, she noticed the instructor was missing. She didn’t really care since he seemed like if he got left behind anywhere, he’d probably be able to fend for himself.

After looking around the room to make sure everyone else had returned safely, she sat for a moment, trying to remember the last addition to their Dream world. She had only briefly seen it before the professor abruptly dismissed class, but it was enough to draw her attention. She had thought she had found the ultimate darkness in her De-Light, but the black knight seemed to be even darker as its armor absorbed all the light around it. She had noticed the white rose emblem on its chest only because she thought it was a shame to disgrace the darkness with its light contrast.

Her thoughts then turned to who made the form; the pathetic little artist in the back of the class that she sometimes caught staring at her. Wondering what kind of De-light he had found to warrant such a creation and why he would care about such a thing, she began to wonder if he was a little more dark than she gave him credit for. She glanced at him briefly, developing an idea.

Layla stood up and began gathering her supplies. Ignoring the homework assignment from their teacher, she was more focused on the assignment The Company had given her. She would have to fight in a cage match, unless she could find someone to take her place. Her only concern was that it would be a fight to the death and, as a result, something she’d much rather delegate to someone else. As she threw her worn leather knapsack over her shoulder, she glanced at the boy once more. She smiled at him, then turned and proceeded to leave.

As she made her way out of the classroom, there was a slight disturbance at her feet. It would have easily gone unnoticed unless someone was actually looking for it. It almost seemed as though her shadow was a little darker than it should have been and lingered just a little too long over the linoleum flooring it covered. It would have made her life so much simpler if the darkness from her De-light had merely followed her out from the Dream world. Unfortunately for her, that was far from the case.
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 10:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just after last class, while Atticus was still in Dream...

He had remained behind, and much to his consternation - if not surprise - so had the Knight. It advanced on Atticus, who threw an arm up in a defensive gesture as gleaming wards written in arcane language on the very air wrapped themselves around the black clad figure, seeking to immobilize it. No words had been spoken, the gesture had been immediate and reflexive. As they wrapped around the ebon clad form, they transformed from words to bands of glowing energy.

"What are you doing here," it was more than half rhetorical of the Artificer to ask, and simply implied that of all places, the being had no place there. "If you needed my council, you were to wait within my Sanctum. We don't need you here, scaring the students." He stared long at the armored figure before demanding an answer from the otherwise silent juggernaut. "Well?"

"The boy summoned us," the Knight began to answer.

"Then it was because you allowed yourself to be seen. You strayed from your posting in the lake of the glen." The wizard's posture relaxed somewhat. "I realize your difficulty," though the words could have been consoling, Atticus's tone was more chastising as though he spoke to a faulty piece of equipment. "You don't know what you are - and neither do I. That makes you dangerous, perhaps." He tilted his head as he observed the Knight, "I'm no longer certain your component parts will ever blend together; part him, part her, and technology and magic binding it - you - all together into some kind of Frankenstein. I still cannot decipher how the bond holds."

"I can," the Knight returned, without moving. The two sat staring at one another in silence for some time. Their alien miens were too far removed, collectively, from humanity for it to be called awkward. It simply was what it was. For a long time, the wizard did not question the Knights claim, he simply regarded him with a mixture of skepticism and scorn.

"Elaborate, then." Atticus quietly demanded after a long silence.

"Love," the word left the Knights lips unhindered, a simple statement of fact. The bands of energy around him seemed to bend back on themselves, as space itself warped where they had landed on his body. He stepped forward. Atticus posture did not change, not even a dilation of pupils to signal alarm. Nor did the look of skepticism vanish. "I will return to the Glen, or if circumstances permit, the Docks. I await further summons, thus."

"Love," Atticus sighed to himself as a silvery white portal opened with a swipe of the Knights left hand. "After all this time? After all you've seen?" Atticus speaking on the subject of love was odd enough, and as alien a topic for lecture as any he could think of choosing for himself. The Knight hesitated and looked back for a moment.

"Always." The Knight nodded tersely and stepped into the portal, it closing behind him.

Atticus stood alone in Dream, surveying the spot of the Knights departure, before once again glancing around the grounds where the classroom had stood. He remained there a long time, considering the Knight, considering his students, considering himself. Emotion was still difficult for him, in many ways alien to him. It was easy enough to see the connection and influence of emotion on the articulation of power, as evidenced by his students participation in Dream. Could one emotion in particular weigh so heavily upon the scales, though? What were the limits, if any, to the way such a thing may modify power?

He was proud of all of his students, in different ways. Most of them chose to stretch their abilities and truly test their limits unhindered in Dream - and due to the way he designed the scenario, there was nothing wrong with them doing that. Let it inspire them back in the waking world, inspire and awaken them, to the limits or limitlessness of their powers. There was one however, Ms. Storm, in which he could not help but take particular interest. Her conviction to do no harm, or anything that might be construed as harm, was in some ways typical of someone of her talents. Pyromancers generally tended towards always erring on the side of safety, or being borderline or complete sociopaths; the latter he would not teach, and would have felt obligated to monitor more closely. The notion of a pyromantic abjurer, however, left him intrigued. He couldn't help but wonder what would happen, and pity the aggressor, who turned her conviction to do no harm on it's head, and invoked her unfettered wrath. Her native determination would make her a formidable foe.

He couldn't tell how long he tarried, but he felt somehow it was too long. A blue rent in space and time opened to the safety of his Sanctum on Horizon, and he stepped through. The preparations for the next class were long ago made, but he preferred to have ample time to go over them anyway.

((Lectures incoming shortly - more shortly than the time between my last post and this one, ie, within the next week <3))
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2017 11:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Horizon Amphitheater. Mage Hall. Academy of Bristle Crios.

It had been some time since their last class, the regular curriculum having been interrupted by protests on campus and throughout the rest of the city as well. At the request of the administration, Atticus had had to attend seminars on cultural empathy and sensitivity training, the results of which were likely to be subtle at best. An errant remark he'd made, loosely worded, had sparked controversy among the alumni, casting him in an unfavorable light. The hiatus of all classes had given him ample time to reflect, but he preferred shorter periods of introspection punctuated by extended periods of external focus. Now in the brief period before class started, Atticus was afforded yet another brief flash of introspection as he realized how his time away from teaching allowed him a more objective view of what he'd been doing. Not only that, but how that new objectivity would change his teaching method.

Before the students began arriving, he began loading notes onto the transparent boards. Questions, lists, diagrams, and definitions covered three entire boards – and would immediately be transcribed into any Codex's opened during the class, as was noted in the top right of the central board. He would offer a smile, his version of one at least, to students as they entered, but otherwise keep about his work until the notations were all loaded onto the boards.

Transparent Boards wrote:

The last subdivision of Arcane Arts we will be studying: that which draws from and manipulates the unliving, (not to be confused with undead – the unliving pertains to that which was never alive) primordial energies, and that which draws from and manipulates the living (in this rare case, the 'living' also includes the undead). The former is routinely thought of as 'Sorcery', the latter as 'Mysticism'.

What is Sorcery?

Sorcery – A Way of Looking at the World?

Schools of Sorcery:
Aeromancy – Air & Wind
Cryomancy – Ice & Cold
Divination – Determining Past or Future Events
Electromancy – Electricity & Magnetism
Enchantment – Imbuing Objects with Arcane Energy
Geomancy – Earth & Rock
Hyrdomancy – Water
Pyromancy - Fire
Spectramancy - Light
Summoning – Transporting via Arcane Energy
Transmutation – Changing Matter

What is the 'best' School of Sorcery? How many schools can I learn?

What is Mysticism?

Mysticism – A Way of Looking at the Self?

Mystic Spheres:
Animism – Talk With & Mimic Animals & Plants
Alteration – Shapechanging
Channelling – Adjusting the Physical State
Healing – Restoring Health & Energy
Meditation – Adjusting the Mental State
Mentalism – Power of Telepathy
Necromancy – Cause Arcane injury, Commanding & Creating Undead
Sensitivity – Aura Perception
Spiritualism – Communicating with, Creating Spirits

What is the 'best' Mystic Sphere to focus on?

The Curious Case for Wood
Wood – Dead or Unalive?
What about Hybrid Magic?

Combining Sorcery & Mysticism

Spellcraft & Design: What Are the Factors?
Invocation Time – How Long Does it Take to Cast?
Range – How Distant Do I Need to Effect?
Duration – How Long Must I Maintain the Spell?
Area – What Amount of Space Must the Spell Effect?
Effect – How Intense is the Effect?

Notice to Students – This Material Will Be Covered During the Final Two Lectures.



The last line was underlined just as the last student sat down (barring any latecomers), and he stepped in front of the lectern and leaned back against it just slightly. Atticus cleared his throat.

“Homework assignments given during our last class will be forgiven if you haven't completed them, or will count as bonus credit if you have.” He took a moment to scan the students, gauging their reactions, before continuing. “I have a fair degree of certainty that this will be the portion of the class you were likely looking forward to the most. Students, welcome back to A&M Theory.” A slight smirk betrayed him as he considered, briefly, the implications of his phrasing. What part of the class might they assume he was talking about, if they hadn't read the boards? Why, the end, of course.
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 30, 2017 9:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

After a good long break, thanks to various disturbances and her parents flipping out over deaths on campus happening nowhere near her at the time, Fliss was back, feeling a lot less confrontational about Professor D'Arcstorm and his methods.

And then she saw the boards. And the smile. Good gods, the smile ...

Sitting down heavily, she opened up her Codex to let it transcribe everything itself and pulled her notebook out. The very first line she wrote was ... Cultural empathy and sensitivity training has sent the prof round the bend. Warning! Warning! Then she closed her notebook and got comfortable, actually reading what was up on the boards.

Well now ... this actually sounded like it might be more fun. Had they finally reached the practical application part of Theory?
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 23, 2017 12:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

“Just like the rest of what you've studied here, it's important to note that the definitions you'll learn here are only a frame work – by their very nature, they change according to the practitioner's subjectivity.” The class had settled down faster than he anticipated, either eager to learn, or eager for the bell and the end of term in general. 'No matter,' he thought. He had never considered that he might have been in some way obsessed about his teaching before, had not considered it until his counselling. He was put off by the notion that the class itself was subject, but when the counselor had drawn the parallel between the subjectivity of his students to the class to the subjectivity of Arcanists and their spellcraft, there was little he could say to argue. He was resigned to teach the class according to his own, he hoped objective, point of view, and let the rest fall to the students for their interpretation.

“We're going to jump around a little bit in the syllabus now, so while that-” he gestured to the notes on the transparent boards, “Provides a basic outline for what we'll be doing, the actual practical work is going to be done a bit more out of order. First, as you can see reading down through our to-do list, there are two main categories of magic listed: Sorcery & Mysticism. Both of which have already been loosely defined up there, along with their subcategories. Before we go any further, I'll field any generic questions you have about what's in your notes, but I'd prefer to keep the elaborations brief, if possible. The notes should provide us with a more than level playing field, as it were.”

“Feel free to read into the term 'playing field',” he was moving back behind the lectern now, “Because we're going to play a game. The rules are simple, and I'm familiar enough with all of you to know that you're all more than capable of playing. Simply put, you must either define – through explaining the phenomena seen or encountered – a spell that you've seen, heard of, or read about. You don't have to list a 'name', you can call it anything you wish – many casters 'customize' their spells by giving them names, but many have quite common core components. A magic missile is a magic missile is a magic missile, whether made of fire, light, or water. The other option, and this is my preference,” he paused for a moment, not for drama, though it did seem to heighten for a moment. “Is that you cast a spell yourself, preferably something which we can discern in some way; don't try to claim you've cast a Divination charm and then proceed to simply make something up.” His tone was very dry, with a vague hint of amusement.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 23, 2017 12:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

“After the spell is named, explained, or cast, tell the class whether it is Sorcery, or Mysticism. In addition, bonus marks will be awarded if you can name a subcategory to which the spell might belong. There are no wrong answers, and no penalty for a wrong guess, though I would ask you not to be completely silly in your assertions. I would also suggest that students comment on each others examples as well, which is to say, if you think the spell in question might be the opposite of what the person who gave the example claimed, feel free to state why, and how it might better fit in another category.”

“Consider this to be the end of class homework, at the beginning of the class. For those of you who were worried,” he smirked again. He couldn't help it. He knew students longed for the end of classes. “I will drone on and give brief additional notes on the various schools and spheres listed on the board now. Nothing in depth, just something to fill the moments while you prepare your examples. Don't worry about interrupting me, simply stand and I'll pause in giving notes to let you give your examples. I may, on occasion, play Devil's Advocate as well in some cases, and try to make you consider more 'outside the box' thinking in how you define you magics.”

((Greetings everyone! I only waited this time to make sure people saw it was being posted to again, and to give anyone that wanted to do an entrance time enough to do so. I'm going to try to lay down some brief notes for the class every other day or three, while giving you/ the students time to throw something out there. Don't wait for Atticus to intro anyone, or worry that he's being interrupted – like a good AI, he'll pause in his efforts while the students take the stage. If you plan on your character casting a spell themselves, which I encourage everyone to do if it's an option, feel free to assume that the classroom environment has been optimized to support whatever spells you wish to cast, in a fashion that will not be harmful to the other students; ie, fire spells aren't going to ignite the books, no one will drown in a water summoning spell, etc. That being said, have fun with it, go wild, don't -try- to burn the place down, or injure others characters. :p))
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 23, 2017 7:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah, well, this part was easy. Even though she didn't consider what she did as particularly spell-casty, Fliss was definitely at home with this. She waited for the inevitable pause, raising her hand to volunteer herself as the first demonstrator. Getting to her feet, she shucked off her clothes - for reasons that would become only too clear in just a few moments - revealing that, like her father, she wore a skin-tight bodysuit beneath.

"Nobody panic, I've got this under control," she promised, and quite simply combusted.

Every inch of her set light, from the tips of her hair to her ankles, though she thoughtfully left her feet free from flames to avoid damaging the floor. Through the flickering brightness, her features were still discernible; she had become, to all intents and purposes, just a fire person of some kind. She held the flame for about a minute, fluctuating the heat and intensity just to show off, really, before absorbing the fire back into herself. The body-suit was untouched, proof that even if she'd been wearing her uniform, she wouldn't have been nude after going to flame. This was her innate skill, her born power, and even though she hated it at times, Fliss was beginning to learn why her father enjoyed being what they were so much.

"So ... pretty obviously, it's Sorcery, and even more obviously, Pyromancy," she said with a grin. "It doesn't really have a name - I guess The Human Torch is already taken, so feel free to name it if you like." She shrugged, biting her lip. "And ... I'm gonna get dressed again now."

Blushing, she pulled her clothes back on haphazardly, throwing herself back into her seat to hide her face behind her hair. One moment of confidence, and now she just wanted everyone to forget she was there.
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2017 10:11 pm    Post subject: Burning Hatred Reply with quote

Layla perked up a bit when the professor said they would be playing a game but, by the time he started describing it, her enthusiasm waned. ‘That doesn’t sound like a game,’ she thought to herself, ‘Sounds more like work.’ She decided she would put in minimal effort. ‘I’m here for surveillance, not to be on the Honor Role, unlike some people,’ she thought while glaring at Fliss, who had proceeded to perform her ability.

Of course Miss Goody-Two-Shoes would want to show off first. Look at her, a teen with fire, how impressive,’ Layla silently sniped to herself while rolling her eyes. She was impressed, though she wouldn’t admit it. Her jealousy had taken over. ‘She’s got it all - awesome powers, and a sickeningly sweet Goody-Two-Shoes boyfriend. All that at like, sixteen,’ she thought while trying to remember what it said was her age on the public census records.

Once Fliss extinguished her flames, Layla’s burning hatred quickly fizzled, too. ‘Oh, man,’ she thought while panic set in, ‘What am I going to do? I can’t do a spell or magic or anything else like that. I’m pretty sure drinking someone’s blood wouldn’t count as a power…’ But she did have one vampiric ability that might work. It wasn’t too showy, since she hated people knowing too much about her, but it might suffice.

After waiting to be called upon, Layla stood up and said to the professor, “I would like to demonstrate the ability to shapechange.” Allowing herself to grow agitated by Fliss’s demonstration once again, Layla welled her hands into fists at her sides. Slowly opening her hands as she brought them up for show, it became clear that her fingernails had grown thicker, longer, and more curved, becoming long talons similar to those of a bird of prey. She quickly glared at Kincaid, revealing amber eyes with reptilian vertical pupillary slits. Since their last encounter did not go as she had planned, she wanted to make sure he didn’t try to tell on her, at least not again.

With a blink, her eyes reverted to their normal cold blue. She loosened her stance and her shoulders, trying to ease her aggression. As she did, her nails returned to normal. She was grateful she had fed earlier that day. Not only did it give her extra energy for her little performance, but it had also caused her skin to have a healthy light tan complexion, which would have been impossible since she never saw the sun. She hoped if anyone suspected anything of her superhuman nature, they would at least rule out vampire.

Layla cleared her throat and looked to Atticus. “Since the ability to shapechange involves the manipulation of the living…” She reminded herself that the professor did say that, in this case, ‘living’ also included the undead, “it would be considered Mysticism and, more specifically, Alteration.” At her conclusion, she promptly slumped back down into her seat.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It had been a long break with much that had gone on during the hiatus. Ammy slid into class on time as usual, but that was about all that was usual for the Lupinossai. She was often distracted, golden eyes half meditative on something inwards and she was absorbing information it seemed by periphery accumulation. Her codex open, she viewed the updated content for today's lecture, then leaned back and listened to the lecture by Professor D'Arcstorm. The promise of others demonstrating spells or describing what they've seen was amusing to hear.

Ammy gave a smile seeing Fliss' pyromantic display, just like her father and gave a smile as well seeing the shape changing Layla performed. She had no comments on either students ability to do magic. Had this been a much earlier time and she still inclined to be a teacher perhaps it would be different, but now times have shifted, sands swirled and callings had her attentions and instructional insight consumed. She was a student as well, so she was happy to enjoy some laziness.

Once Fliss and Layla were done, she slid from her seat and approached the front of the class to take a turn. Prior bouts of worry and self doubt shredded, gone, loss like melted ice to the fires of something burning long and bright in her seeking out a beacon calling to her among the stars. This bled into her an unshakeable confidence of old as she turned and viewed the class.

"When I first took the class, I was full of doubt and concern with what I was and could do or if I could continue to do anything I used to do. If that sounds like a confusing cadence of words, then allow my energy to speak the rest clearly for me."

Ammy no longer spoke now and held out her hands. With a fluid motion of a dancer, she began to move side to side and shape the air with her hands into a ball of brilliant yellow sunlight that filled the class with summer warmth. She'd pause in her in movements, holding the ball out in her palm out to face the class to see it was indeed small ball of pure sunlight she held. She'd then clap her hands together, smashing the ball of sunlight and they'd see her entire body coated in steel. She walked among the class so they could see every detail on her was steel, and not some magic armor but the fact she'd just transmuted fur, cloth, hair, and skin into steel that moved and flexed just like their non-metal components could.

She returned to the front of the class, made several pulling, drawing motions from her chest outward as if pulling string. The steel left her body forming a solid, intricately made steel staff that she then drove into the floor. The metal vanished as around her four slim pillars of stone rose to frame her. She touched the stone pillars changing each one to a different element, one diamond, one water that stayed in a pillar shape, one a swirling column of air, the last a pillar of pure, dark shadow.

Once the pillars were changed she made a single howl, and everything melted her from body, leaving behind a growing form as she became and eastern dragon with scales the color of black, white, orange and gold like that of a Koy Fish. Her long serpentine tail slithered through the pillars, snuffing, snapping, shredding or illuminating them into oblivion. Ammy then coiled her dragon body and flew straight up with no wings, to erupt into a burst of a fire ball that rained phoenix feathers.

The feathers floated down to the floor, swirled in the stirring breeze of something breathing and slowly formed a funnel cloud in front of the class. The feathers spun faster and soon became a blurring mass that popped with sparks of blue electricity into the form of a dark tanned woman with white hair and golden eyes. Ammy stood before them, human, still clothed as she had been, held out her left arm and raising her right arm slid a small knife from her pocket along her forearm to show a bleeding cut before the class. She put away the pocket knife and spoke. "Buum" A slight golden aura surrounded her right hand and she slid it over the injury leaving behind no cut, just blood that she wiped away.

She'd stay in human form a bit longer as she'd speak about what she'd done with a slight, inhuman pant of heavy breathing.

"You have witnessed multiple uses of both Sorcery and Mysticism. I will do my best to dissect for you what my spells were. As to any names for them, I have none. I just know them and they are, they exist.

My first spell drew heavily upon Spectromancy as I called upon my connection with the Sun to produce sunlight in the classroom.

The second spell was Transmutation mixed with Prime Energy to change my clothing, fur and skin to metal without any metal upon me to use for the transmutation equation.

The third spell combines Geomancy and Electromancy to control both an element and shaping that element by dealing with its unique lattice and grain structures to produce intricate details on a solid metal rod.

The fourth spell was Transmutation and Geomancy combined making the metal into stone to allow me to use Geomancy to erect the pillars.

The fifth spell was Transmutation and Prime Energy again to handle lack of certain elements in the equation to produce four pillars of four different elements with just stone.

The sixth spell was pure Alteration to allow me to change into my dragon form.

The seventh spell was Channeling allowing me to reclaim and channel the energy I spent on the prior spells back into my body to allow the eighth spell.

The eighth spell was a complex variation of Alteration by using Summoning to move my dragon from into the sky, Transmutation to change it into a cloud of phoenix feathers and finally the Alteration and somewhat Healing aspect to reform me into the human before you.

My ninth spell was simply healing the wound on my arm the I inflicted."


Ammy took a moment more to breath and compose herself. "What I have shown was not done or demonstrated by any means to discourage or flaunt abilities. It is a demonstration of someone who has finally come to love herself and found forgiveness in a land lost long ago. It is possible for many to do multiple spells from multiple divisions and subdivisions. Do not use me as a standard, for a celestial soul that is part of the fallen creation is gifted in working energy and doing much with it. I am deeply grateful for being part of this class and the courage it has given me to break free and be who I am."

She'd bow to the class, and return to her seat, her form shifting back to Lupinossai as she sat looking drained.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 20, 2017 9:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Professor and High Mage of the First Sword did just as the first student to respond asked, he remained calm and without letting his mien betray it any more than usual, cast a critical eye on the workings of his students. He let each who indicated they wished to stand take their turn displaying and explaining their manifestations, all the while mentally cataloguing the techniques they alleged to associate to their skills.

It only took a moment to realize that no more students were forthcoming in taking the floor, perhaps having been intimidated by the last display. He allowed a momentary half smile and a single eyebrow crooked skyward in amusement.

“Those were all excellent examples,” he began, “Normally when someone inserts 'but' here, it disqualifies the sincerity of their first statement, but,” his lips were tugged again into a smirk, “what I'm going to ask you to do now is to try to think differently.” The mantra of some great innovator, he thought to himself.

“Is it possible that some of the effects which you've just now manifested and shown the class could possibly be done more efficiently?” He resumed his place first in front of the podium, then pacing before the assemblage, unconsciously using hand gestures to try to aid in his explanation.

“For some of you, this could include considering how you could add to the effect you achieve with minimal additional cost to you in terms of energy,” he gestured sweepingly to the students, then to himself. “No matter where we draw the energy from, there is always a necessary expenditure of energy, so part of our goal is to make the exchange or transformation from one format to another as economic as possible.”

“For others, it's going to include considering techniques which allow you to achieve the same results, but drawing the power for those results from fewer sources; call them what you will, pools of energy, schools, spheres, mana, cosmic power, to a great degree for the purposes of this class, they are interchangeable.” This time the gesture started out grand, but as he continued speaking he drew his hands to emulate an increasingly focused channel. “Often, but I concede not always, a case can be made for using fewer sources of power, but with greater ability and more nuanced control of those sources.” He gestured behind him, and ten glasses of water were suddenly there, adorning the desk which sat before the transparent boards. Each of the glasses was slightly less than 1/10th full. “If I were a thirsty man, this would be a complicated way quench my thirst,” he reached behind him, into a hidden compartment of the podium, and drew forth an 11th glass, full almost to the top. “Thankfuly, I am not.” He raised the glass to his lips and began to drain it, as he did so the liquid in the other glasses slowly lowered until all eleven glasses were empty. He lowered the glass from his lips and made to set it beside him, and it vanished as soon as his fingers let go. The other ten glasses had vanished as well.

“Now, before I go on and give some examples in relation to the manifestations we've already seen, is there anyone else who would like to step forward?” He quirked a brow, stepping away from the podium. “Don't let yourself be intimidated by the displays you've already seen, or by any trouble you might have in giving explanation for what you do – that's something I'm more than willing to work out with you here in class, and could even be to the benefit of your other classmates.” He cast his gaze around the room, eyeing many of the students who hadn't said anything yet, and pausing momentarily on Bastion Kincaid, purposely as he'd noticed the young man draw the ire of another earlier in the class.
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bastion stood up. He was nervous, shaking slightly, and focused entirely on the Professor. He hated being the focus of any kind of attention, especially in class. Especially when it came to his magic, or whatever the hell it was. He didn't even know if he belonged in this class, except that he found it interesting, and the field trip had provided some interesting visuals. As far as that goes, the class by itself had provided some interesting visuals. Not just today when the students were putting on their displays, but the student body in general: the Lupinossai, the Minotaur, couple of attractive young women - and so what if one of them was more than mildly psychotic? There were pictures of all of them in there, especially Felicity and Layla. There were lots of those two, though at one point in his sketches all the images of Layla suddenly stop. Probably had something to do with the fact that she'd abducted him, or tried to at least; she wasn't really a girl, she was like a sack of cats wrapped in a hot girl costume.

"I'll go!" He swore inwardly as soon as the words left his lips. Too loud. Maybe it was his own head, though. He was a quiet guy, having to speak loud enough to be heard in the class wasn't his thing. In his own ears, it felt like he'd shouted at the professor. For a second that felt like an awkward eternity, he stared rather dumbly at Atticus, then suddenly bent to grapple his pad and pencils from his seat and shuffle down to the front with all the grace of a buffalo.

"I just, uh," My god this is a nightmare, he thought, "I have to kind of show you what I'm doing," he spoke to the professor as he tried to compose himself, casting a slightly apologetic look at the class - except for Layla who he still deliberately avoided eye contact with. "It's not like, flashy, or, I mean, I guess it could be," he shook his head, as if to clear it, and finally stood before Atticus. He panned between Atticus and the class, sketch pad clutched to his chest so that its pages were open for everyone to see. He began leafing through it, from front to back. Dozens of miscellaneous pictures, then onto some around campus, and the class. Sketches in and around Rhydin, some down by the docks and the fountain, several inside the Red Dragon Inn. More of the class, some very detailed renditions of their field trip - and one of a knight clad in black armor except for a white rose on it's chest. The majority of the sketches that were people in the class were skewed in numbers towards one person in particular, and every time another one came up, Bastions face quite fittingly burned. "Finally," he gave a sigh of relief, once again looking up from the pictures to the professor and class. "So, none of those were signed; you probably didn't notice but I left myself nowhere to sign them." It was true, he hadn't. They were all shaded so that there was no real appropriate place for his signature - not if he wanted it to be at all legible. "And, it's gotta be my name signed for it to work, so," he was flummoxed. "I'll just show you." He leafed to a picture of a door - the background of the door was vague, it just stood in the middle of a white page. He panned it around to everyone in the class, then dropped the pad to one of the table tops, and set to drawing something. The pencil scratched somewhat frantically across the pad, but each stroke was strong and deliberate. In only a moment, he held it up again, to show that he'd penciled in the rough features of the room - from the students point of view. Transparent boards, podium, table, even a slight shading to add depth to the back wall. There was room in the bottom right, which was still empty white paper. "So, no living things," he gestured with his chin down to the paper, "That's why, not signatures on the other," he felt like he was rambling. "Anyway, it works like... this." He turned so he was facing the front of the class, students at his back, cheated slightly away from the Professor. He held the pad up with one hand, bracing it on the inside of his forearm, and signed his name, with a sharp dot of the 'i' and a crisp slash underneath.

Something twisted, visually, at the back of the room on the wall behind the transparent boards. A doorway, clearly reminiscent of what he'd depicted in the picture he signed, had appeared there as though it were naturally part of the architecture, though by its design it clearly was not.

"So. That. I don't know what it is, like what kind of magic. I don't know what to call it. That's one of the things I was kind of hoping to learn, here. I can do it with all kinds of things, though, but doors are easier." And safer, he added silently to himself. "That's why I don't do it with, you know sign that is, all my stuff." Because I don't know what it's doing, if it's bringing things to me, making them from scratch. Everything about both of those explanations is wrong, isn't it? So, can't there be... something else?

It was as if he heard the voice of the Professor in his head, as though it were speaking solely to him, Mr. Kincaid, where does that portal open to?

"I don't know that, either," He answered aloud, and somewhat miserably, pausing to look back at the professor as he made his way back to his seat.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2017 10:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The doorway crafted by Mr. Kincaid was there only moments before Atticus had thrown a Hold Portal and Seal Portal effect over it. The answer to the silent question he sent the student confirmed his suspicions - he was a wild talent. Although he knew how to harness his ability, he didn't fully comprehend what it was he was doing. There was a level of danger involved in what he was doing that Atticus couldn't fully understand without further study.

"Conjuration, Mr. Kincaid. Correspondence, Prime," he'd begun to list the potential and likely sources of the effects, but the list would prove too long an onerous for the intervention that was needed here. "See me after class, if you would Mr. Kincaid." He cast a backwards glance at the doorway now imposed upon his classroom. Let the rest of the class surmise that requesting Kincaid stay after was due to that infraction, no need to incite panic. For a moment, the High Mage's attention seemed to have been diverted. He slowly forced his attention away from the boy alone and back to the rest of the class as well.

"Ladies, Ms. Storm, Ms. Tollivar, and Ms. Spiritor, all excellent displays; different from one another as possible, and all excellently controlled." He placed a little more emphasis on that than perhaps he should have, though his appreciation for control likely surprised no one, not least among his students after having the dry tone with which he began the year. "I confess difficulty arguing each of your magics and effects are any different than you say they are - which are truly testament to your individual, perhaps unconscious, pursuit of the dictum, 'know thyself'. I will, however, make the attempt."

"Ms. Storm," that smile again - more than a touch of pride, "For sooth, I believe you are completely efficient in your access to your abilities and their use. The only alternatives I could discern to your methods would be an application of Spectramancy, but in that you sacrifice the effects of heat in favor of solely using light. If however your abilities stay true to the pedigree you suggest," his nod to her was a short bow, "I am eager to see where your pursuits take you.

"Ms. Tollivar," he turned to Layla, his attitude cooling slightly from Felicity, but only because he'd been made aware of certain issues concerning the raven haired student. "Again, equally efficient, though perhaps slightly more facile to give rebuttal; spectramancy could account for your manifestation as illusion, but then you lose the efficacy of the available weapons procured by the changes you invoked. The only remaining avenue I could see possible would be to use Transmutation to the same end, but altering some covering of yourself, rather than yourself. Excellent initiative in jumping ahead and using something related more strongly to mysticism, though.

"Ms. Spiritor," somehow, some way, the woman's title was issued as a slow drawl. It was highly uncharacteristic of Atticus, but it was also infinitely suitable to the look he was giving her. Equally uncharacteristic lines of wry humor etched the corners of his mouth. He placed his hands together as if in consideration, and his head canted just slightly to the left. He righted himself, only to look vaguely upwards, his head tilting back now in remembrance of Ammy's display. "I have concluded," his mien shifted again to regard Ammy, but lost none of its good humor, "That you sought to use everything at your disposal in an effort to stymie my ability to identify the multiplicity of your effects. I will simply point out, instead of going over each in detail, that some of the effects could have been duplicated by spheres you had already used, without the need to use a new one. This is not a criticism; if you are comfortable with a sphere, my all means you should use it - practice begets perfection. Most people simply don't have the access to that multitude of magic and so I offer the concept that some of them could be otherwise duplicated with less spheres, to those who have less spheres to use." There was a hint of pride about him as he spoke to Ammy too, for surely it was a feather in his cap as a professor to count her among his students.

"What's important here, is that we acknowledge - once again - that magic is subjective, as are its effects. This leads us to our next question, which you'll find equally subjective. What type of sorcery - or mysticism for those of you with that particular bent - is best? Obviously, there is no necessarily right answer, but for answers, I yield the floor to you." Gesturing to the class from in front of the transparent boards. "Keeping in mind that same effects can sometimes be duplicated, or almost duplicated, by other means - which school of sorcery or sphere of mysticism is best, and why."
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 08, 2017 9:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Praise from the professor was rare enough that Fliss could feel herself preening a little as he commented on her display. She felt a little bad for Bastion, hoping he wasn't going to get into too much trouble for inserting a door to nowhere in the classroom wall, but the professor's continuation on her pryotechnics distracted her. Spectromancy? She frowned thoughtfully. It had never occurred to her to try and use just one aspect of her flame. Was it even possible to separate the heat from the light, and vice versa? That was sort of fascinating just to think about.

The question put to the class made her smirk. She had a little brother and sister - family arguments had taught her there was only one answer to a question like that. She raised her hand, waiting to be called upon before she spoke.

"There is no best or worst," she said with the authority of the eldest sibling in a family. "What works best for one person might be terrible for someone else. Defining schools of magic into best and worst is an argument waiting to happen. It's all subject to personal perspective."
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 5:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Andu had silently taken his usual seat, sitting on the floor while leaning back against the back wall of the lecture hall. Silent, subdued, contemplative, yet alert and taking notes. Though an occasional raised eyebrow was given at the displays, it would seem that Andu would forgo any displays himself, or even any active participation in the discussion, in favor of giving thought to the material and displays given by others.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 9:51 pm    Post subject: Offense Versus Defense Reply with quote

“I agree,” Layla said when she was called upon after Fliss.

She leaned back in her seat and continued, “I almost view Sorcery as offense and Mysticism as defense. True, you can use both offensively or defensively, but primarily, Sorcery affects other things versus Mysticism affects the person. For example, offensively, someone could do more damage if they created a tornado that rips across an entire continent versus if someone turned himself into the Hulk. Defensively, sure, I could protect myself a little if I made an ice shield or put up a wall of fire or something but, depending on the attack, I may be way more protected if I turned my skin into diamond armor or something fantastical like that.”

“Depending on what someone’s preference is, they might prefer one over the other. Offense or defense,” she concluded.

Just like a girl with straight hair wishing for curls and a girl with curls wishing for straight hair, she longed for what she didn’t have. Since her abilities seemed more Mystic in nature, she wished she could do Sorcery and devastate a whole city or something equally impressive. ‘I’d be way more important to The Company then,’ she thought.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 1:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As both young women spoke, Atticus nodded and had adopted a more serious tone. He always did when really discussing the actual metaphysical mechanics of Arcana.

"I've heard it said," he began as he stood before the podium, "That there is no 'fair' in philosophy - a maxim I'll now adopt since this is an academic class, and neither love nor war.

"I'm going to take a little from both your answers," he raised his hands gesturing to Felicity and Layla, "And see if I can't give all of you," gesturing to the class entire, "a little bit more to think on." One of the transparent boards changed, and listed the headings 'Offensive', and 'Defensive'. A list of all the Schools of Sorcery and Spheres of Mysticism appeared under each heading.

"Now, you," gesturing to Layla briefly before turning to gesture to the board, "Suggested, or implied at least, that these were two, if not the two generic categories for magic. Allow me to make this suggestion, by means of alteration," he gestured to the board, and the categories changed to instead be labeled 'Combat' and 'Utility'. "This is actually a closer approximation to how I was taught."

"Now," he began again, this time gesturing to Felicity, then to the boards and their recent change, "I think this is an excellent illustration of one of your points, which was that magic is essentially subjective - something I'm almost certain I've heard somewhere before, if I could only remember where." He was clearly into the conversation, to have uttered such a rhetorical ironic musing - aloud no less.

"But is it the magic that's subjective? Or is it more appropriate to say that it's us, as users, who are subjective? Consider for a moment the more broad notion of the difference in how magic is used, what it is for, or what different subdivisions of it are for. Offense and Defense are too limited in scope for how they should actually be categorized, but, it is the perfect example of our own limited subjectivity - which is one of the things we're trying to overcome here.

"A few examples, and I promise to be terse," Now for the attempt. "First let's look at Sorcery, one of the most obvious uses is combat, but where it can be used to do violence, it can also be used for immunity to the same element one is using to effect damage. That is to say, using Enchantment and the right elemental school can render you immune to that element. To note one of the specific examples you've given," gesturing to Layla again. "Diamond skin would almost certainly be affected through use of Enchantment and Geomancy; where as Alteration and Channeling combined could prove to develop a sort of natural armor, it would still be composed of biological matter. Further outside the scope of combat at all, Pyromancy can make simple fires - or flares, though Spectramancy can also do the latter. Hydromancy could conjure or purify water, all of which of course fall outside the scope of combat.

"In regard to Mysticism, allow me to offer a more complete array of some of the potential in regards to its use both inside and outside of combat. Channeling, Meditation, and Mentalism are three Spheres commonly only used retroactively by the wielders of the Spheres; that is to say by improving ones physical or mental stature through increasing strength or charisma artificially, and in the case of Mentalism, for telepathy. What if you externalized both Channeling and Meditation, however? Used their energies to, respectively, reduce an opponents physical ability to defend itself or render a foe comatose? What if you used Mentalism to overwhelm a foe with illusion that not even Spectramancy could duplicate, one that applied to all their senses - or perhaps even their memory or whether they view you with hostility or not: these are all within the scope of an accomplished Mentalist.

"All of this is said without even broaching the subject of Necromancy, which is among the most potent and versatile of magics wielded in combat, able to injure anything which is living, regardless of elemental affinity or opposition, and if a wielder is powerful enough, able to command that which is not living." He let that hang in the air for a moment before continuing, "We will not dwell long on Necromancy, however, unless there is anything the student body wishes to explicitly discuss; more focus than that is outside the ethical boundaries of the mandate of this class."

"With that, I'll allow any more of today's discussion to be student lead, though I will readily participate if there are any concerns or questions. I hope the takeaway, in part, from today's class will be an examination of the similarities between magics themselves, with consideration towards the concept that the divisions we see in it are largely superficial, and of our own making. This isn't a criticism of course, but a rather logical commentary; magic is a supernatural, metaphysical, manipulation, and where there is no unified knowledge, those with the talent to perform it create their own sort of structure to make it accessible to themselves.

"Before you go, again, if there are no more questions," he raised his hand to halt the class from leaving just yet, to those who would immediately do so, "We have one more class, and we'll be covering the Problem with Wood - water can be effected with Hyrdomancy so long as its outside your body, but not after you drink it; the problem with wood is this - is it alive, dead, or unliving? Or is the problem in what magic effects it and how all in the mind of the mage? That and Hybrid casting of spells using both Sorcery and Mysticism, next class."

The transparent boards winked out, and he moved behind the podium, organizing beneath and opening his own Codex. He'd stay until all the students - except Kincaid - had left, and entertain the questions of those who stayed after as well. He also kept a steady gaze on Lady Spiritor as the class ended; she'd put on a much more elaborate display than some of the other students, but there was something about it. One of the things she used, he was certain that she'd labelled it wrong, but he wasn't certain that she'd done it intentionally. One of the effects she'd displayed had been Necromantic, of that he was certain, but without many of the hallmark after effects of it's use. He would write her directly, Codex to Codex. He hadn't meant to overlook the complexity of her display, he had merely been trying to ascertain the veracity of the effects she'd used. If he would not have had a moment of insight explaining how she might achieve a Necromantic effect without realizing it, he would have sought a different explanation.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 2:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ammy found the discourse about what was deemed best for a practitioner a twisted, Pandora's Box with neatly crafted Schrodinger Cats tucked into every nook. The point of what was best being very subjective was true within Ammy's own mind as she reviewed briefly her attempts to teach her children the arts of weaving magic. However the relabeling Professor D'Arcstorm presented; taking the Layla's two sides of a coin definition of Attack and Defense to be rolled, drawn out and rewoven as a thick strand of infinite possibilities with Combat and Utility had Ammy staring at the boards behind Atticus. Centuries of study from several continents, realms and life times and not one of her teachers placed the dichotomy of magic in such a way.

Ammy gave a small sigh and a slightly audible face palm as she feels truly like the proverb 'Always something new to learn'. Though now her mind was ticking and picking away at what could possibly be considered Utilitarian Combat spell? Then again the Codex shimmered and winked with the lectures topics for next class and she felt maybe that was a topic worth exploring then. She hadn't noticed how far off in thought she'd wandered until she saw students walking past her and leaving the class. She blinked a few times noting the lecture was over.

Ammy tossed some of her crimson hair over her shoulder and began to pack her Codex away to leave, mind already a swirl with logistics, council meetings and the trip back home again. She noticed a slight glow from a page on the Codex and saw she had a message from Atticus. She leaned on the table and looked it over. Necromantic Sphere? One of her spells? She felt something ill root in her stomach as she wondered perhaps some of her varied lives did take root within her soul. She nibbled on her lower lip and closed her Codex tucking it into her shoulder bag, then she moved to the front of the class to politely await her turn to speak with Professor D'Arcstorm about something she'd done, her mind worrying over the magic performed, nervous and unsure of what was necromantic in the display.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 10:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bastion had been silent, and had not drawn, etched, or broached a pencil in any way, shape, or form, since being reprimanded - even if it was for a just cause. A sullen look had stolen over his face as he leaned against his hand waiting for the class to empty, except for any others who had direct reason to speak to the professor at least. He stared at the doorway he'd created, and Atticus's question plagued him. Where did it go? Then a thought struck him, such a simple solution he almost slapped his own face.

Labels. Titles. Names.

They needed something that defined them. Not a description in total, that would be too long; it needed to be something short, yet evocative. It had to be something he could write or mark on a page. Something symbolic that identified what he drew, in total.

A True Name of some sort.

Mirroring Ammy unintentionally, he began to chew his bottom lip. The professor intimidated him, he didn't know what to expect. Should he even be trying to puzzle out a solution, or would that just lead to more trouble? He pulled the hood of his shirt over his head and dry washed his face with his hands. He hated anxiety.
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