Nov 12, 2019 2:47 AM
Jaime in Fabulous
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“It approves.”

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"Good. I wanna tweak the gradient on this one as long as by itself it's still noticeable - you're doing silver twice, what if you go rose gold to gold to silver?"

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She tries that.

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That's almost exactly the same.

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She reverts it.

”Nope.”

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"More detail than that please."

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“There might have been a small shift, but it was insignificant enough that I couldn’t tell which way it went.”

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"Okay. That means it's better. The rest of your gradients are the old way, so matching them gets motif bonus. If this wasn't lots worse that means it's a better gradient. Fix everything else to match to check."

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... oh, that’s obvious in retrospect.

Well, there’s a reason she hired a professional.

She tweaks everything else to match.

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This is substantially better. Tanya looks smug. She has Jaime place slight organic-looking variants on the shiny tattoo, variously sized, in strategic locations. She prunes away some excess feathers. She makes Jaime try 48 hairstyles with a darkness halo and without and then festoons the chosen one with ornaments. She wants to incorporate onyx into some of the jewelry. She tweaks the shape of Jaime's dress and her shoes, and then they are out of time.

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Jaime is cooperative and appreciative and absolutely gorgeous.

“Have a nice day.”

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"You too!"

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And so Jaime leaves.

She tests out what her new and improved maximum-blob-size and default-blob-darkness are like.

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She can blob a noticeably larger area than she previously could! The middles get cloudy-night-no-light-pollution dark.

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She loves her power so much.

A dozen different potential experiments pop into her mind - 

But first, since an idea occurred to her during that session, she tries giving herself a second pair of wings - not the substantial kind, that’d make her encrypt, but rather the kind that she can shape out of darkness and attach to her back and her present pair. Wispy around the edges, going on a gradient from ‘dim’ at the base to ‘cloudy night without light pollution’ at the tips, below her existing set and serving as an upside down mirror of them.

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This is slightly worse.

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Oh, huh - she plays around with a few dozen different shadow-wing positions and angles and such and sees if any of them click.

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She can get a little improvement by having them right over the backs of her real wings like wing casings, moving them together.

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She’ll take it.

She tries to...

... repeat the microwave experiment - with her regular darkness, and by trying to directly produce darkness in the microwave spectrum, and by gesturing very empathatically at regular darkness that it ought to cover the microwave spectrum...

... see if she can make her darkness selectively visible, enlisting her bemused (and moderately drunk) uncle in the process...

... create blobs of darkness which twitch or wiggle or move a foot to the left, without her active intervention, about five seconds after being made...

... make darkness blobs capable of snuffing out candles, or darkness blobs that are cold to the touch, or blobs that corrode paper, or blobs which only block out particular wavelengths of light and are accordingly tinted in various colors...

... form blobs of darkness which react differently to her gestures than blobs of darkness ought to by default - going the opposite direction of wherever she flicks, or being more responsive than they should be, or being less responsive than they should be...

... produce darkness that also blocks off sound (in the form of the television), or scent (from the chopped up garlic she’s using for dinner tonight).

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She cannot make microwave shadows, selectively visible darkness, ones that affect candles or temperature or paper, or ones that interfere with sound or scent.

She can do ones that move after five seconds, ones that are colors, and ones that do things like move after five seconds even if she's contradicting this intention with gestures, but if she hasn't preplanned a blob's behavior it will respond to gesture.

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Jaime looks up research on swarm eyesight, and the extent to which swarms tend to rely on it.

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Swarms seem to have lots of senses and fluidly switch between operating with any of them - sight, hearing/vibration sense, scent, and possibly something that's reciprocal to the magical girl ability to sense them. They are not noticeably impaired in operation at night.

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Oh well. The possibility was worth the time it took to google.

She spends a few moments indulging the urge to smile, takes several photographs of her new ensemble, and moves on.

She tries creating an inky, wispy blob, shaped like a ballerina, preset so that it pirouettes precisely five times and then disappears without any gesturing on her part.

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She can make it pirouette for sure; the shape is still sort of soft and blurred.

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If it has more definition than a stick figure, she’ll call it good enough to incorporate into her routines. 

She double checks whether she can make her blobs of is-it-really-darkness-if-she’s-making-it-be-a-color cycle between hues on a preprogrammed schedule.

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