Oct 20, 2018 9:48 PM
combinatorial explosion
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Treble Cir lands on a very suspicious Maitimo
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The strangers have six casters, in their group, that Qiri can count. Qiri's group has four counting him, and they got split up awhile ago when the strangers started that earthquake. Qiri is stuck with Master Huo. Master Huo is dying, but since Qiri is chained up he can't use that to escape, or attack Master Huo. The master's magic is uninjured, and he can reach Qiri's from where he lies, and Qiri is sitting there, goosepimpled, enduring it. He wonders if Master Huo might be in enough pain to distract him, if Qiri tried to wrench his magic away, but he doesn't think so. He can squirm around a fair bit under Master Yu and Master Zao if only one of them is using him for a spell - and if he wants to earn himself a beating - but not Huo.

He doesn't get nauseous anymore, like he did when he was a kid. So there's that.

Huo's casting a healing spell, moving Qiri's magic around this way and that to set it up. Qiri assumes it's going to target Master Huo, but spells don't know who anyone is. Qiri can't distract himself, not with his spine tingling and all his magic cringing under the slide of Huo's. Instead he tries to concentrate on something less directly sensory: how's the spell targeting? How is Huo going to make sure it heals him, and not Qiri's irritated skin under where the chains sit, the injuries to his fingers from the last time he irritated Master Yu, the probably broken toe sustained in the earthquake?

He figures it out when the spell is probably almost over: it's going to target the most injured person, and Qiri is a little banged up but Master Huo's got an arrow to the gut and a slice through his thigh that's probably going to bleed him out before the abdominal wound can kill him. It's objectively pretty impressive that he can concentrate enough to make his magic force Qiri's through the motions he wants.

Then, dimly around the cloying sensation of Huo's magic over his, Qiri notices a group of the stranger mages approaching, standing close together, back to back to back, doing something -

And he and Huo are banished somewhere else.

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It's a bunker half a mile underground, but it'd take a little while to notice, because the ceilings are outrageously high and made to look like tall trees with sunlight streaming down through them. There are people walking around, in uniform. When they see the two of them they freeze. The nearby ones draw weapons and the farther ones start running.

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Master Huo has his eyes shut to concentrate through the pain, and Qiri can't even finish contemplating warning him in time. Huo doesn't abort the spell. It goes off, in a sickening frission of vertigo and fever through Qiri's magic.

The spell identifies the most injured person in range and fixes him right up.

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This means that a third person appears crumpled on the floor of the bunker. The people with weapons drawn hesitate. "Don't move," one of them says uncertainly. 

(Behind them all, heavy concrete doors slide shut). 

I'm not even sure I know how to move, the new person says drily. He's shaking violently, but his voice is calm and bored and tired. The other intruders aren't Elves, are they?

       No.

Confine them. I don't know how they did that and I don't care to have it keep happening until I do.

       Fast, tense discussion follows over whether this is Lord Maedhros and whether they should listen to him. Eventually they get confirmation of the order from the copy on the ship.

Some Elves move forward to get a look at the first two mysterious arrivals.

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They are:

- one corpse, who was cutting it really close on the spell timing
- one frightened teenage boy, conveniently already in chains (wrist to wrist and ankle to ankle, loose enough that he could walk but not run, with an additional length of chain from his wrist to the corpse's limp hand), staring up at them in bewildered terror.

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The Elves look unhappily at one another and then gesture that he should follow them. One of them has his hands up, palms out, as if to say he's not dangerous, but the other still has a gun drawn. 

 


The newly-created person on the floor sits up to observe this, still trembling violently.

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Qiri looks between various Elves, still bewildered and terrified. He winces when he stands up, and favors one foot, but drags his chains after him where they beckon.

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An Elf smiles at him encouragingly. 

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Qiri has no idea what to make of that, so after blinking at the smile, he ignores it and shuffle-limps along, not less bewildered nor terrified.

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He stands. Standing feels nearly impossible but when he directs his body to do it it happens, somehow. He is really loathing experiencing this kind of sensory input; he closes his eyes and looks out of other peoples; which is much better. It feels sort of like - but not exactly like - something is protruding out of his spine. He can see through other peoples' eyes that nothing is there. 


It is so so hard not to die. He could. This heart will just stop if he tells it to. It'd be a horrifically stupid thing to do, this is potentially quite a strategic asset and has implications for every dead person whose chips they've retained, but he could do it and so he has to spend most of his attention making himself not do it. 

It still feels like there's something in his spine. He tries not to think about it. 

 

 

They don't have prison cells but they have supply rooms that are currently empty. The Elves lead the sudden arrival there. They watch him warily. They hand him a Dwarven earpiece and close the concrete door.

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Qiri takes the earpiece, but has no idea what it is, so he just sort of holds it, till they've closed the door, and then he risks setting it down, and sits and rearranges the chains as comfortably as he can.

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They sweep the area for invisible people or small robots or other things which the magical arrival of the humans could have distracted them from. They get Lord Maedhros some clothes. 

 

They try to talk to the captive in seven different languages. 

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Qiri doesn't know any of those languages, just one dialect of Yisi, which he'll mumble through a sentence of in case that helps: "I don't know your words."

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They look at scans and review memories of the incident. The teleporting human seems typical of a human aside from the teleporting. Huan says he's not a Maia.

Lord Maedhros is skeptical. Lord Maedhros doesn't explain why.

     After a short while, the door opens again and an Elf, singing to themself, starts trying to undo the chains.

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The chains are locked, but not particularly sophisticatedly. The mechanism will need picking but not telekinesis. Qiri doesn't resist, though he continues to look bewildered and terrified.

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More Elves come over and there's a flurry of conversation in their language and then someone gets an appropriate bit of wire and they manage to pick the lock. They lead him out.

 

Lord Maedhros is looking out of his own eyes by now, and when he sees Qiri he starts scowling.

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Well that's bewildering and terrifying but what isn't, really. Qiri shrinks a little closer to the relatively friendlier Elves but not enough to encroach on their personal space.

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One of them pats him, a little cautiously, and assures him that they're going to get him a room and medical attention, which of course he doesn't understand. They gesture at an elevator.

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He does not know what an elevator is, so he's assuming they're going to lock him in here instead of the larger room because they need the larger room for something, but in he goes.

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The room moves! It's sort of nauseating. When the door opens, it opens on a hallway, smaller but still exceptionally decorated. They gesture him down it, open a door, and go in. 

This room has a large bed and a glass screen on one wall and a glass false-window on another wall, with a spectacular view outside. There's a bathroom and a closet. 

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...well this bodes horribly.

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The Elves smile encouragingly and leave; they're still right there in the hallway, and they don't close the door, but they're trying to give him some space. Or something. 

"We've got a doctor coming," someone says, unhelpfully.

 

(Lord Maedhros watches through other peoples' senses. There's no mysterious extra limb through other peoples' senses. Other people don't even have the sense which would detect it.)

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Qiri, unbeknownst to Maedhros, can sense magic just fine. Qiri is currently paying attention to Maedhros's own, somewhat uncomfortably, and also paying attention to the bed, more uncomfortably.

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The Elves fetch their doctor. Her clothes would communicate to an Elf that she was a doctor, but will probably not do that for Qiri. She comes into the room with a case of equipment and attempts to communicate that she'd like a look at Qiri's injuries.

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Qiri will let her pick up his hands and look at his wrists once she moves to do so, and she can pick up his feet and look at his toe if she's noticed the swelling - he's wearing sandals; it's visible - and check out the the manacle marks there too.

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She sings and takes a look and applies a cream to the manacle marks and a brace to the toe and says something vaguely scolding to the other Elves and then offers him the bottle of cream to reapply as needed. 

      "-what's occupying Curufinwë, this is ridiculous, I can't give him any medical instructions -"

"On his way. Lord Maedhros didn't want him to talk with him remotely, apparently." 

       "Hmmm."

"It's nothing life-threatening, is it -"

       "Humans are fragile and if it were he wouldn't be able to tell us. But no, I don't think so."

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