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Oops - Through the Looking Glass
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Ammy Spiritor
Just An Alchemist
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2015 2:09 pm    Post subject: Oops - Through the Looking Glass Reply with quote

Three days had past for the Lupinossai Alchemist. Her leg healed and restored as she predicted. Ammy felt much better from the rest, but she was out of the loop of what may have gone on during her rest. She stood, dressed in a spare set of black pants, maroon blouse and leather vest. She was about to see to breaking her fast in the Alchemy House kitchen and maybe score some of Jack's legendary coffee when her eyes settled on mahogany chest upon her desk.

She walked to the chest, the one place she stored her correspondence with all the teachers and faculty, opened the lid. Lying atop the pile was a very unique letter. One of the few she'd every responded to, Atticus D'Arcstorm. She looked retrieved the letter and went in search of food. She sat down an hour later with food, coffee and her letter from Atticus written a year ago. As she ate, she read the components that Atticus had listed for his proposal to make a large arcane artifact using the entirety of the Bristle Crios coven. She remembered writing him about caution in making this device and asking who would control it and be responsible when the inevitable hit the proverbial fan.

Her eyes paused upon 'The Looking Glass' mentioned in his letter. It was a device to study alternate or parallel realities. She laid the letter down, ate more of her meal in quiet thought. This couldn't be related. She was fairly certain that such a device was never requested to be installed anywhere near her classes. She was pretty sure she'd remember those release forms. However, she had a cabinet with a mirror in it. A cabinet she bought herself when first starting to teach. Sturdy, cheap and reliable but completely ordinary. So why then was she getting the mother of all shivers down her spine?

She ate more eggs and her mind pulled a piece of the puzzle to the forefront. A simple cabinet, yet a broken mirror is missing. Now why would the mirror and any traces of it be missing? She finished her meal, folded up the letter and left Alchemy House. It was time she paid a personal visit to Lord D'Arcstorm. Perhaps he could help her with this bizarre issue.
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Atticus DArcstorm
The Artificer
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 10:18 pm    Post subject: To Whom It May Concern Reply with quote

Atticus stood within the confines of Horizon, his Sanctum on the co existent plane of the same name. Within one particular chamber of Horizon there is a room called the Scryer's Eye, and it was there that the archmage now stood.

The room was a vast and spherical, and he levitated in the center of it, watching all around him as the far walls became backlit and produced three dimensional reproductions of each of the Coven's Houses - specifically the areas of each that he'd sought to use for his Paradigm Projects. Each of them were still bare, but the materials for each of the projects had been stored on site. And now... some were missing.

None of them were terribly potent on their own, but they could certainly be used to ill effect if one knew what they were doing. The most potent of them that were missing was a mirror from the Looking Glass.

"Arcfire, what about Zero Point energy?" he murmured, seemingly to no one, though a blue light pulsed across the displayed images, then over additional scenes as the images changed; the process repeated several times over, and though he'd spoken seemingly to no one, someone answered.

"None, sir. If I might add, there is no indication that it's him. It could very well be someone within the Coven, as the evidence suggests." The voice was totally disembodied, and despite the slight echo, rather soft.

"Keep reviewing the data here, we will be returning to the Coven. I'll be in my... office," the word was not natural to him. He didn't understand keeping office hours, instructor or not. In general he hadn't really understood the point of an office, when the backroom held a Gateway to Horizon anyways. "The letter of condolences should be... hand written."

~ ~ ~

His office space within the Academy was small. Very small. It was the only real space that he had to himself, except for Horizon. He didn't even have his own chambers to speak of, really, in the Coven; although he did night there often enough, he stayed with someone else. And now that person had also taken up a separate residence.

He occupied the entry, a small desk and two chairs; shelves lined with books, papers, obscure knick knacks of minor arcane nature - mostly amusing trinkets with no purpose, just cleverly enchanted. It was a cluttered broom closet, to be sure, but it was all he required while he was here.

To take more than he needed would be at the very least inefficient.

He smiled for a moment, almost able to hear Miranda's voice; would she sound plaintive, and annoyed, at his refusal to admit to anything but his own brand of logic? For not taking just a few feet more space, there was lots to be had after all, for himself? He didn't dwell on how that boded for their relationship, as he admittedly found women - and especially her - a mystery. Even when he felt the most distant from humanity, however, something about seeing her just a little mad made him want to kiss her.

"You should be working, sir." Arcfire's 'voice' broke the silence, as it were, though it only spoke to him in his mind.

"Correct," he thought to himself as he took quill and ink, and set pen to paper. In fairness, it probably would have done him good to keep thinking about Miranda. His first few drafts of condolence letters were somewhat... disheartening.

"To Whom It May Concern: Your children are dead and injured, perhaps if you elect to continue to produce offspring your second litter will be sooner taught not to tamper with forces beyond their control..."

The letter continued on, and Atticus would be doing revisions for some time.
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Ammy Spiritor
Just An Alchemist
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 27, 2015 5:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ammy took a stroll to Mage House and detoured a bit to see what the Academy was doing to the Mage Wing of the school. She could see from the designated pedestrian pathway she was on that the construction crews were already at work tearing down and gutting the damaged areas. She hugged herself around the middle and continued to walk for Mage House.

Have I lead Chaos here? A place I once thought a safe haven from He who stalks my life? No, that'd be folly to think Chaos was only hunting me. The whole coven is a patchwork of lives similar to mine. Happenstance maybe? But why the taint on those potions? Why a daemon kracken? Was I careless around these children?

Ammy's mind was numbing with the crash and fall of questions coming in waves. She'd locked away the torrents of self doubt and fear for several years now. She'd been given a measure of peace to breath. Was that peace now gone? She looked at students waking by to the other wings for the few classes that had rallied and were being taught at the time. Her mood darkened a bit watching them.

Innocent lives, young and fragile and here she was the wolf among many sheep. Perhaps I should think about the ways of a hermit and vanish away for a time?

The thought had her recoiling with self loathing and a slap of mental indignation. Her thoughts had distracted her from the usual walk to Mage House and soon she realized her legs had taken her to a part of the building she'd never gone to. Looking about, Ammy found an index of instructors on the wall and walked down the hallway to face a small door.

This was an office? The size of the entry seemed to say cleaning closet or water heater instead of 'Noble Professor of Bristle Crios'. Ah, well, to each their own. Maybe Atticus liked small places. Checking her blouse and vest, she gave a knock on his door and waited.
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Atticus DArcstorm
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PostPosted: Sat May 16, 2015 10:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ammy Spiritor was an interesting creature, at least Atticus thought so; she reminded him somewhat of a Protean - if only because her form and likely all those of her race reminded him of the beastmen from the islands called Ruinora & Pelucid. Her intellect and nature, however, reminded him more of the Protean's which shared those lands; noble of heart, with power embedded into the fibre of their beings.

His thoughts had been on her, following the incident, and her presence at his door had struck him as ironic - and fortuitous. He wouldn't need to hunt her down, not that he was necessarily ready to speak to her. He hadn't gathered enough intelligence himself.

He'd gotten to his feet as she'd entered; Arcfire had opened the door with his mage wards, admitting her without even consulting him. Something he would have to remedy, given his now knowledge of potential enemies in their midst.

"Lady Spiritor, please enter." he gestured towards an empty space, then addressed an evidently unseen presence. "Arcfire, chair. And monitor Horizon's simulacrum event trials and probability matrices."

"Yes, sir." A straightforward, compliant, yet gentle voice sounded from nowhere, as an energy construct of blue light began to form where he'd gestured for Ammy; the angles and vertices of the construct quickly coalesced and began to form a comfortable looking chair - much more so than the backless stool on which he'd been rigidly perched.

"My condolences on the..." he'd started addressing Ammy again, hesitating a moment before finishing that particular sentence, "unfortunate events which befell the Academy; would that I could have been present to help. To what do I owe your presence here, now?" That is, 'what can I do for you?', an attempt at empathy without really knowing what to say, nor how he should appear. His face was largely stoic & plain as he'd addressed her; though he was pleased by her presence - he loved, if it could be called that, spending time with others of the Craft - but his voice betrayed none of that.

It just wasn't the way he was programmed.
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Ammy Spiritor
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PostPosted: Sun May 17, 2015 1:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ammy bowed her head to him, defering homage to a higher mage than herself. "Thank you for seeing me unnanounced, Atticus."

She'd enter and take a seat once the seat was formed. Golden eyes glimmer watching how the chair was made and formed. A unique method indeed that she may venture to learn at a later date perhaps. She'd fix those golden eyes upon Atticus and gave a rueful smile hearing his condolences.

"A tragic event indeed, but may I ask you send the condolences instead to the families of the men that lost their lives. I do not feel worthy of praise or pitty. The beast was loosed on my watch. Students and faculty were harmed. Lives were lost. I'll be reporting directly to the Head Mistress after my time here to see if I am still a teacher or am to be removed. That aside..."

She drew in a deep breath and released it. Her furred ears twitched and her fingers worked at the trim of her vest. She was nervous, puzzled and outright agitated by the events.

"Against all advice by medical staff to me moving with my injuries, I returned to the fourth floor alone to search out what may have gone wrong before the morning crews could remove evidence. The only thing I found useful was within the shattered remnants of my alchemical supply cabinet. I've found two oddities I cannot reconcile with my memory. There was a small rack of vials still intact for students to use during experimentation in class. I made them myself to verify and confirm safety for what they may need to experiment on and deemed them safe.

However, I recalled the student that started the incident had used a summoning potion and squid ink to create more ink for his well. Both reagents were prepared by me several days before the incident. So I was curious to see if the magic had changed on the vials. A simple magical detection cantrip showed me something, to this day, that still makes me shiver. Only two of the many vials was normal with the hue my magic gives off. The rest were violet hue showing Daemon taint upon them."


She looked at him with a bit of a pleading face. "I've not touched Daemon magic in three years Atticus. None of the power or spells used for them but yet they are tainted." She said, a bit hard upon herself in what she thought was her fault.

"Yet... the other odditie is bizzare. Is it not natural and among the laws of physics that when glass shatters it moves about the area of impact? That cabinet had a mirror in it when I bought it. That mirror though is missing. I know it broke with the impact I can see on that cabinet, but none of the silvered glass was found among the glass shards of reagent vials or chemical bottles.

I put little stock into either of these oddities until I woke from a 3 day recuperative rest due to my injuries. Upon my desk were I keep my correspondence, I found your letter to the Academy about creating your large scale artifact. The listing of the Looking Glass is what has drawn me to you today to ask.... could it be possible that the mirror or one like it could impart Daemon Taint upon items near it?"


Her goldens settled on his calm face, unaccusing and hopeful that a fellow mage could her keep grip on sanity during this dark time.
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Ammy Spiritor
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 1:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One year later:

Ammy sat in her office, with tea and cookies from her shop prepared and waiting for Atticus D'Arkstorm, Magus and expert in his fields of Magical Study and Use of the Magical arts. She was having trouble remembering the last time they had met to talk about the events of the Daemon Kracken attacking the Academy barely a year or so ago, nor the de-shelved, crest fallen teacher she'd become as her students and classes dwindled to nothing.

Perhaps though, with his return and appearance in Professor Tolmay's class, they can finally make head way into what really happened and she hoped in her heart, restore something she feared is lost forever in her.
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Atticus DArcstorm
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2016 11:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

He waved aside the offer of refreshments, which was not necessarily out of sorts for him, but something had definitely changed in him over the year since they'd last spoken. There was a certain quality to him before that suggested naïve curiosity in his analysis of things, and that quality could be seen in his face, heard in his tone. He was more bereft of that, now, replaced by something harder. His features now were all too often painted with suspicion and skepticism, when they showed anything at all, beyond stoic neutrality. An exchange of pleasantries passed, and the change in his demeanor would have been subtle, but existent.

He'd been about to speak about the mirror, to address it when he heard a voice whisper, "Tell her... it was her fault."

He ignored it.

"It was the mirror itself; a Gateway of sorts, and one of the materials I had stockpiled in preparation for the creation of the Paradigm artifacts. Someone, somehow, had attuned it to an Abyssal realm, and placed it in your classroom. You were not at fault, though I must concede it is possible that one of your students, or perhaps an assistant, was at fault for the mirrors theft, and placing it in your class."

The voice in his mind's eye continued to whisper, "One of you has already fallen to our greatest pawn..."

He ignored it, focused on her, and the voice was reduced to an irritating buzz in his head. He had mostly been looking away from Ammy while he explained, but always made eye contact when he did look her way.

"I've taken personal responsibility for the materials, of course. I've made sure that no one, student or otherwise will use them improperly again." There was something a little darker to his tone, or maybe it was just that he was about to say something he was sure Ammy wouldn't like. She'd had ethical or moral objections to some of his projects in the past. With this last revelation, perhaps they were founded. But it was too late.

"I made sure by using them myself."
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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2016 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ammy gave Atticus a polite nod of understanding when refreshments were declined. The change in his bearing and attitude since the last time they'd seen each was indeed a stark change. She'd often wondered what had happened to him and where had vanished to? Granted before him, he would not see the same, vibrant, take charge professor that once dared life to throw any challenge at her.

She was a bit more weathered, quieter about the academy and rumored to keep to herself more and more in the Alchemy House doing more and more research. Not to mention the faculty gossip would be very accurate in how she had not taught a single class since the Kracken incident and it was not for her lack of trying. Student simply viewed her as dangerous even though many praised her for her many attempts at keeping people safe that day. As the students vanished, the rumors flew more that the famed Professor Spiritor lost the fire to teach and dwindled to a dim ember of research and hermitage in her office.

Now though, she held a glimmer of something returning as she watched Atticus. Oh she remembered well her warning voiced to him in a letter about those devices. To voice them again was pointless and a waste of breath. Damage had been done though in perspective on a small scale.

Furred fingers danced along her tea cup a moment or two, muzzle twitching a bit as she heard the admission of what she suspected. "So... something did happen." She sighed a moment. "I fail yet again to guard the Light from the Dark." she mused bitterly and sipped her tea.

"Indeed, someone is influenced around here Atticus. More than just your 'Looking Glass' has gone into play. Regrettably an ancient Philosopher's Stone is now missing from my possession and control as well. During the fire fight and such, one of my arcane casters that was experimental held one of the few stones I have left. It was entrusted in the care of Professor Tolmay. I recently asked for it to be returned as I know that a stone made in the old ways with the cost of human lives is damnably vile and disastrous in the wrong hands. Regrettably the Chaemera Pistol was handed to a security guard that was found dead. The pistol never turned in or found." Her words laced with fire and a cold promise of something nasty to come.

"So we seem to have someone posturing things like a chess game. A mirror here, oddly a gun vanishes there, and dare I say you go missing for a whole year? What happened to you Atticus? I came to you for help. I came to you for help. Me. The one professor in this school everyone assumes would rather go in guns blazing into hell first than ask for help. And you.... vanished...." Her voice choked down a bit, restraining a sob from a long worried strain of tension.

Ammy arched a white furred eyebrow as she just stared with her molten gold eyes at Atticus. She may lack the will to teach and may have lost her zeal, but her wit was very sharp still and her long history of being used as a weapon and pawn in many wars made her rather cynical and clever in diagnosing things. "What is really going on Atticus? What do you mean you used the stockpiles for the grand artifact you wanted to make? Chaos has taken all the time in the universe to personally stalk my entire existence and after the last chess game he played with me and my family I am in a mood to flip tables."
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Atticus DArcstorm
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PostPosted: Sun May 22, 2016 11:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Would that he had any emotion to spare her.

"I am not certain what order to address your concerns in, Lady Spiritor." He was stone, steel, diamond, and ice, all at once.

"It is neither Chaos, nor Darkness, Lady Spiritor; those are both things which exist. What plagues us is that which does not; those things that, because they do not exist, are envious of all those things which do. If you must assign a label to them, it is Oblivion. Chaos is merely that, chaos; it cannot stalk you, and if it does then it has ceased to be chaotic and must therefore be something else. What is Darkness, but the absence of light? And what of shade and shadow, then? Are any of these things inherently bad? Not at all, for some they are the necessities of what constitutes life."

He was quiet for a long moment, bridging the silence by the intensity of his gaze as he scrutinized her.

"Oblivion. That force that urges us to give in to despair, despondence, to become nihilistic; it doesn't really push at us from where we can see it, it pulls at us from beyond. The lure of the empty, of nothingness, can be surprisingly strong."

He fingered the one ring that he wore, like a miniature crown - because it was - upon his finger. He turned it one way, then the other. Finally, he caught his finger under it and pulled, and the soft metal gave way like rotten cloth, opening and pulling off his digit. Nothing more than dross, now.

"Yes, you did try coming to me. As I tried coming to you, before this all started, I must point out. My... dangerous artifacts... had a purpose. Have, I suppose, both lesser and greater, depending how you perceive the situation. As to where I was: I was in Lazarus Sleep; the sleep High Eternals are taken by whenever we die."

In the darkness of his mind's eye, there was... laughter.
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Ammy Spiritor
Just An Alchemist
Ancient Wyrm
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PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2016 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ammy listened to Atticus speak and she pulled herself back within, the mask of her former worn self in place again. Emotions were a frivolous waste on the man, or was he a man? She listened to him more and she was having her doubts on many things with him.

"First, just Ammy. I am not noble. I have no titles and I am far from polite and refined to be called 'Lady'. I'll still drop kick butts and rip out throats. As to Chaos, I agree, it's not living but it does love to cause mischief and among that mischief are Champions of Chaos. Ebony Knights. They are the vassals of Chaos that I have dealt with. In the same vein, Oblivion is a concept or a state of being no more animated or free thinking than Chaos, Atticus. Are you implying Oblivion has vassals as well running amok?"

Oblivion vassals would be worse than Chaos vassals. Ebony Knights had rules to follow and play by. Oblivion vassals did not care. Which mean life and death were fair play to them. She watched him toy with that ring and noticed in sickening clarity the hollow finger fall away like strands of rust and metal filings. He was nothing more than energy in a construct. That made him vastly vulnerable to use.

Ammy was no longer seated, nerves of steel and battle senses strung taught hummed making her stand, within in her hand a sword of pure sunlight held and the tip in Atticus' direction hearing the remainder of what he said. If he was a High Eternal that was dead and now awake again then Oblivion could be at play. "Who killed you and and who am I really speaking to?"
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PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2016 9:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As the conversation progressed, Atticus remembered well why he took a liking to Ammy; she was possessed of knowledge which extended beyond a single universe, such as the Ebony Knights. He was ready to engage on this subject, ready to ask, 'The Ebony Knights you refer to; do you mean the ones with the Yellow checks? Those who serve Arioch?' Few had studied the multiverse as he, those myriad Nexus and worlds that they were connected to; such an obscure reference intrigued him. Misguided fellow, Atticus thought, that Arioch. All in all just a particularly nasty demon who had to make do with Lucifer's leftovers.

Alas, it was not to be.

It's amazing what a little misunderstanding can do, and how honestly they can happen; Ammy did not see his finger torn away as dross, merely the ring. Though with the position of his hands when he was doing it, and the flak falling to the floor, it very well could have looked like that's what had happened.

As her words rang out, and the would be blade of sunlight snapped forward, several Contingency spells Atticus maintained were activated. His robes retracted back onto his body, looking for a moment like a dark, second skin before stiffening into the black, molded plates of an Alluvian battle suit. His body filled with undirected energy, which crackled over his skin; simultaneously his skin took on an almost metallic gleam, and ribbons of unspent energy bled upwards from the corners of his eyes. As the full light of the sword fell upon him it briefly revealed the full glory of his Apocalyptic form, if only for a moment; he appeared to grow in height, nearing seven feet, and a crown of blue fire smoldered above his brow. Most noticeably, huge metallic, pinioned wings spread out behind him, as best they could within the confines of the area that for him - for only a moment - had now become cramped. Just as suddenly as it happened, the wings rushed forward and wrapped around him, as a cloak - as his robes had - and that's exactly what they became. His height was diminished again to that of a regular man - perhaps that he had grown was some trick of the light, some illusion spell... perhaps it had been something else. Gone was the crown of energy, gone the sheen from his skin.

But the eyes remained, burgeoning with energy - no longer human eyes at all, but vast wells of cerulean energy. He turned from her slightly, and blinked once. Twice. Three times. With each blink, the energy faded slightly. Or it's appearance did, at least; he was funneling it back into resetting the Contingencies that had just been activated.

His eyes returned to her, his expression flat.

"I am Lord Atticus Kiergaard D'Arcstorm. High Mage of the First Sword, Archmage of the Gardener Knights." his voice was cold. One of her thoughts had been entirely accurate, though he couldn't have known what she was thinking. He was a vessel filled with energy, but no more or less than any other mortal. What were we, if not suits of meat, filled with energy? Was there something special about our forms, something sacred? Atticus would not have believed that.

"Although I was dead, I was not killed; merely faded. For now. This place is rejuvenating. Instead of the True death, Lazarus Sleep took me. Healed me. Bonded me with... myself." Every universe, in every multiverse, or at least, many of them, had an Atticus. As they had one or another of every other thing. Perhaps somewhat ignorantly, he chose not to go into this digression. It would be too detailed, especially given her somewhat aroused state, and the implication of the sword brought to bear for somewhat immediate action. "And now, I am stronger. Harder," he paused, "Better." Those things were arguably synonymous with better; one of his peers had once said that that which yields is not always weak, and while Atticus knew this to be true in regards to properties of physics, he did not always allow for correlation to the living, in terms of mindset; more regarding it solely in terms of physical properties.

"Do you need to ask in regards to the agents of Oblivion, and whether or not they exist? Tell me Lady Spiritor," yeah, good luck, he picked up on her being called that once before, and his mind is like a steel trap. It won't come out. "Ebony Knights aside, you know Chaos is not evil; it's just as likely for a babe to fall from an open window and not be hurt, as it is for the dead to rise up from their graves - on account of Chaos. Often the agents of Oblivion masquerade as servants of something else; they must, for Oblivion does not actually exist. They are the Priests of Light, who abuse their flock; they are the Enforcers of the Law, who lord it over those they should protect; they are not the sole domain of chaos or evil. Oblivion pervades all. Tell me Lady Spiritor, have you not felt the darkness that no light has known, the despair that harrows what you might call your soul, has your mind never, not once, turned to the notion that it would be easier just to let go? Tell me Lady Spiritor, and mind the questions I've just asked - have you not felt the pull of Oblivion?"
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Ammy Spiritor
Just An Alchemist
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PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2016 2:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Unsettled and rattled Ammy had truly been over the last year. Some may have called her insane but that was oft the case with Master Alchemist's and their ever deepening pursuits where mortals should never tread. The illumination of her sun blade upon the High Eternal's contingencies bore truth to her mind and she retreated a step or two, the blade lowered for a moment, heavy breaths taken as her golden eyes flickered with a white sheen of iridescence. Her nostrils flared wide as if taking in the full scent of every thing within the confines of her office as the subtle differences in magical energies grew vibrant in her vision for a moment.

Her sun blade extinguished allowing the room to fall to the normal sun lit afternoon it had hosted prior to her episode. Senses having been jarred and seared clear by the surge of adrenaline and swirl of divine magic and High Eternal aethar. Ammy collected herself more and indeed noticed that Atticus' hand was intact, whole and only a ring missing. She lowered her head to him, a fatal sign of one in her standing to another to show acknowledgement of a grievous error on judgement.

"I offer my humble apologies, Lord D'Arcstorm. I, Amaterasu, Goddess of Sunlight and the daughter of Elise Deluwith, Witch of the Cirus Star have acted with distaste and assumption." Her head remained bowed.

Hearing his exposition on how he had recovered by the Lazarus Sleep made sense to her on many levels. "Waking from long slumber can be jarring when one forgets much of who they were for whole millenniums." She spoke with a tone of experience.

"I merely inquire about the vassals of Oblivion as I've been to busy with dealing with the vassals of Chaos. They alone have proved disastrous to me until the last year or so when I finally awoke to what I once was. Chaos may not be evil but the vassals it has Championed of late have excelled in retaining their wills while exercising the control over Chaotic Energy lending to it evil intent. Now another threat is made aware." Ammy said tiredly and she raised her head but did not look to him.

She moved to the window to stare out at the gardens that Alchemy House kept for beautification as well as a source of reagents. "I must ask if things exist Atticus. I've been lied to my whole life about many things and even to this day, mortals live life spinning lies. Lying is half of the chemistry of life. It is what allows life to thrive and gives Chaos and Oblivion the necessary canvas to move and work upon mortal lives. So much so that my son, when born was blessed with the ability to manifest Chaotic energy. So I've had much to worry about with Chaos.

That said though, who hasn't felt the pull of Oblivion? Have you, Atticus, ever been used as a weapon? Had your entire existence condensed into one focal point? To view all of life and creation that was not in the best interest of a master in control of your leash as vile and evil and then move your hand against that tapestry of life and creation? Have you ever watched an entire nation of several million souls, thriving and alive be silenced in a moment by your own powers? Walk down those now silent streets that are all clean, untouched, unmarred by war yet lifeless, the effect of the new, clean mass destruction of a magical weapon that lives and breathes? Do you wake at night and see souls stare at you and demand your death no matter how much you repent and pay your dues?

Tell me Atticus . . ."
Ammy turned from the window to stare at him for a moment, the sun framing her body setting her white fur to glow softly like a sunset of gold and red. "Have you looked your husband in his eyes and thrust a knife into his heart and watched him die in your arms over and over during the quiet times of the day when the children sleep and your new families are busy? I have. I live with my sins every day and every night for I am ancient as the sun and I have strayed so many times as the sun is want to set on the horizon of many realms only to find itself on the right path once more at the dawn of a new day. Do I feel the pull of Oblivion?

Ammy gave a broken laugh best suited to those that had stared into the abyss too long or those in solitary confinement for life and finally set free to find themselves paranoid to leave their cell. "I've felt Oblivion. Danced with it often. Sometimes lost to it but it didn't matter. I've tried to kill myself sometimes. I've tried to give up often. Yet there is a firm truth to me, Lord D'Arcstorm. A Phoenix never dies they simply are born anew and take on new purpose in the eternal struggle for life."

She turned to look at the sun again. "All that beauty in the sky. Provides warmth, energy, life, and yet it can also kill, destroy and be ugly. Only from a distance can some things be enjoyed less wings of wax and feathers melt and temples of flesh and bone melt away. Yet, sometimes a cleansing fire is needed and often times I've been reminded by my mentors that as many times as I have given life I am also charged to take it for the greater good where need be. Though honestly, I'd rather stand here and shine on the roses until it rains than shine upon hot armor and bloated corpses. A pity that few ever think that deities could ever think like mortals, but we do for we were all mortals once."
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Atticus DArcstorm
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 1:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

He repeated the litany of her 'Have you ever...?' series of questions, one after the other; had he been used as a weapon? Had his entire existence been condensed into one focal point? Had he ever watched a nation of a million souls... the list went on. "Have I," or "Do I," again and again.

He gave no immediate answer, his eyes as turbulent as his namesake, though it wasn't quite emotion that touched them, nor did he view it as memories. He was replaying scenes, thousands and thousands of years worth of information, in his mind's eye.

"Call me Atticus, please, Amaterasu." There now, this was a form he recognized because it was more than social nicety; the exchange of Names was magical ritual as well as social, and so in his mind's eye it had more use.

"All these things you ask, if I have experienced them, if it has been the same for me; the answer in most cases... is yes." He was certainly neither haughty nor condescending in his tone, and likely as close to 'understanding' in demeanor as he'd ever been towards anyone. "Do not let that statement diminish the magnitude of what you have weathered, simply because I have weathered things all too similar." And now, he began to speak more quickly. He couldn't help himself, at what her information about her own ideals suggested about her to him, from his own point of learned view at least.

"You are a thing of Being, Amaterasu, like myself in some ways, and like others who are akin to 'us', I believe as well. Often people segregate Creation and Destruction, and give no mind at all to Balance at all; but these three things are all part of Being. Anything that IS experiences them. Allow this to serve as further evidence of the... machinations... of Oblivion. As I said, Chaos is not... chaos is chaos, it is the force of Random, just as that which is lawful is also Purpose. Oblivion is the annihilation of both Purpose and Random; it draws them in, so to speak, and in so doing makes them its pawns. That is the long answer, to your question. The short answer is yes, Oblivion has pawns on the field. But to call them pawns is a great underestimation of their reach; if Being and Oblivion were playing chess, Being's pieces would have defined ways in which they could act, while Oblivion's would not, and do not.

"I know there are many Ascended beings, like us, who mourn the way of things. I simply cannot, it is simply... the Way. A... friend of mine, a youth, he listens to music all the time. Although I lack the passion to properly bring a piece to life as some can, as one of the liberal arts, I cannot help but appreciate it's beauty in other ways. We discussed, he and I, the nature of Being, and the duality of Creation and Destruction in regards to them being viewed as good or evil. His notion of it was quite succinct but surprisingly accurate, I felt, when he compared it to something he called a 'classic rock' song. The lyric he quoted was, 'Destruction leads to a very rough road, but it also breeds Creation'. The act of one is often the act of both, for to create a thing, something else must often - if not always be destroyed. And to destroy a thing is to create something else, even if what is created is not as readily apparently valuable as that which was sacrificed for its Being
."

He wasn't sure if he was at all answering anything she had said, really, but the entire subject made him surprisingly loquacious.

"Amaterasu, you realize it is Oblivion which makes us feel as though we are alone, when we are not. It's sibilant voice that whispers in our ears, that make us stop searching for, or simply unable to see those things which bring us together. We are all like prey, those of us who exist - and especially those of us who enforce existence. Were that I could give you, or tell you something that would be truly comforting - for I realize that although we are alike in ways you probably, nor I, realized, we are dislike one another in how we 'feel'.

"All I may tell you Amaterasu, is that Oblivion does have agents, and they pursue us, you, me, others like us, seeking to drive us apart, so that we are alone - so that they may better prey upon us. They seek to make us 'feel' as though it is only each of us against IT, alone. Amaterasu, we are not. You, are not.
"

Was it just the subject matter that made him so loquacious? Partly, but not only, no. The other thing that so inspired him was her tale of tribulations; there was a term for a being who's entire existence was so condensed, as she explained hers to be, a term for those who have experienced things so shockingly similar to what she had, that Atticus was uncertain whether it was simply coincidence or not - or he would have addressed it. He did coin the term, on Alluvius, and by extension within the Nexus - or the other way around - and so knew well what someone termed thusly would exhibit. They were forged like ingots, and beaten into the framework of existence that held Oblivion at bay. Sometimes they worked loose from repeated, targeted blows, but almost always they were beaten back into place.

The term for them was High Eternal.
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Ammy Spiritor
Just An Alchemist
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2016 10:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ammy hesitated with an almost audible gasp hearing him offer his first name to her for use. Indeed, names used and given were among the most ancient ways of magic first breathed into mortals with the fire for the arcane. To hold a mortals full name gave the controller full reign; just knowing a full name of a demon allowed imprisonment or banishing. She retreated from the sunlit window and returned to her padded chair taking a seat once more.

"Very well, a name for a name by the ancient ways of Heart Song and Soul Speak. I shall call you Atticus in fair treaty of my name Amaterasu. May the ways be light and with care, may darkness never hear full names for in them we are bound." She said formulating one of many variations of an old name trade ritual.

"Please forgive the flood of emotions that I present. I was once warned before humanity could even speak that taking a fascination with the mortal form would lead to an incurable illness of emotions." She smiled as if remembering some small, bitter joke that brought comfort to her mind.

She spread her hands out in simple, good natured supplication of a hostess. "Please, Atticus, at least sit if nothing else. Even if one of your cast and bearing is immune to such an illness, paying mind to how your demeanor speaks out to others even in silence will reap you many benefits in observation and information."

Ammy took up a ceramic cup of cold tea, her furred hand aglow with soft sunlight and soon sipped the hot tea within the cup bearing a sunflower painted in warm yellow tones. She sat the cup down and considered Atticus for a moment or two and what he'd mentioned of how Oblivion worked and its pawns.

"Yes, I am well aware that one cannot Create without Destroying at the same time. To do so would mean you are of the ancient Elder Gods that take no merit in the trivial acts of our kind. Only they can do as they wish with no rules and to keep their vaunted positions firm, we are shackled to the rules. As you mentioned, Creation and Destruction are one set, forcing life to come about from the recycling of energy and the decomposition of materials into fundamental building blocks to make new arrangements and complexities.

To facilitate it further, Chaos is a subset rule of randomness as pointed out for without Chaos, living creatures are devoid of will, thought or motivation. The simply exist, live, breathe and die without moving. Oblivion is a second set of rules for it is not one rule but multiple subsets of rules that funnel into annihilation, nihilism even.

For if Chaos sparks will, thought and motivation, Oblivion balances it all with despair, loss, and eventually crushing death that leads to Destruction and fulls Creation once more. It is a cycle that all play parts to and some enslaved to. However, cycles like all things living and even with machinery can loose rhythm as extraneous factors hinder or accelerate various parts of the cycle."


She sipped more of her tea. "I am going to hazard that something is accelerating Oblivion more in the cycle than it is normally apt to be. Yes we all feel despair and loneliness, but when something calls in vassals and agents to foster a more expedient execution of the cycle, something is no longer balanced."

Ammy would nibble a cookie soon and ponder things for a moment or two. "I have often faced many things alone. It seems to be a trait but I am not too old of a dog to learn new tricks like having more allies to fight alongside. Honestly though, Atticus, why are the agents of Oblivion set against us? What have we exactly done to upset the cycles, to snub the laws to incur their attention?"
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2016 11:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The dynamic in the room was truly strange; it would have been nice to say it was like the difference between sunlight and moonlight, one generating, one reflecting. It would have been wrong. She was like the sun, in many ways, a self contained ball of energy that waned at times, other times waxing into spectacular flares. She was warmth that was both comforting and deadly.

He was just the purely practical. It hadn't always been so, once he'd simply acted like it was. Once he'd engaged in the strange little humanizing rituals like the tea, the cookies, the formalities when they'd just exchanged names. The very alien part of his mind reminded him that ritual aided in control, over ones self and what one wished to accomplish; magic for example, was filled in many cases with ritual that was in reality pointless except to direct or channel energies when one was not aware of more economic methods. So why not then, social ritual?

He'd remained standing, head down and apparently deep in thought as she asked her remaining questions, and finally he appeared ready to answer. He sat and, with trepidation, reached out and took a cookie. He held it between his fingers, examining it, flipping it end over end. Arcfire, Archon, whatever it was he was calling his Myriad since his Lazarus Sleep, was providing him with nutritional information. He was not impressed, and frowned. What was the purpose of this thing?

Ah, yes. That's why he'd eschewed social niceties. Distractions.

"Creation is an act which almost demands a certain level of arrogance on the part of the creator, even if it's riddled with self doubt." His eyes raised from the cookie to her again, "Forgive my loose paraphrasing of what has happened, but I shall attempt to explain it in a way which would make sense regardless of a persons cosmology - if that stands to reason. Somehow, some... when... Creation was stretched thin, is stretched thin; each tiny patch of creation and being unto itself, often times no longer tethered to others, simply free floating at the discretion of whatever God, Elder or otherwise, or Ascendant or other Power deigned it exist."

He raised the cookie hesitantly to his lips, not yet opening them to taste.

"We each of us, Creators, look around and see what we've made, and we marvel at it's... grandeur. Were we like artists in a museum, we would eye each others work with critical gaze, and insist that our 'art' not be shown alongside one another - and so the space between the art - between our creations grows more vast."

Finally, he took a bite, and chewed the cookie slowly, setting the remainder down on the table and dusting his fingers off upon his robes, then wiping his mouth with them and cleaning them again, making sure any errant crumbs were brushed from his knees.

"It is not that we have done anything to ... offend it, or break any rules. It is that while we have been distracted, it has been... winning. This place is not the only Nexus, though I must confess that currently it is very possible it is, but this was not always the case. Many have fallen, entire Nexuses," he paused, perhaps it was sugar from the cookie causing him to question the way that sounded, "which once were like hubs, tying multiverse to multiverse, are gone. You ask, 'what have we done'? Someone I spoke to on the subject one said it perhaps better than I could explain it. He said, 'We are the picky eaters, who refuse to let our food touch on our plate - no matter that it tastes much the same combined, and ends in the same spot anyway'. Crude, I realize, but true just the same. We've segregated ourselves, and what was once a raging bonfire is now reduced to - against the darkness of Oblivion - thousands of matches."

Something about his voice had changed, if only barely detectably. It was somehow more subdued.

"Whatever else may be said of Oblivion, one must acknowledge this: it is united in its purpose, where those who stand for creation are divided."

Maybe it was the realization, or at least the notion, that he himself wasn't a force for creation; he saw himself as more a force of stability and stasis, now. Though those too were fraught with their own perils.

"I don't think this is as it should be, Amaterasu," he added softly, "but it is as it will be."

Finally, things were coming full circle. He'd embarked on the Creation of the Paradigm artifacts in order to use them against the forces of Oblivion - and somewhere in their near abandonment, Oblivion had seeped in, and one of its agents had usurped them - at least one of them, if only temporarily.
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