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Aug 22, 2019 6:05 PM
a handful of browns in Elsewhere
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Temple frowns. "Thank you...? I am still not sure what is obvious about it." Snuggle. "But I can't wait to get more practice."

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He still seems a little melancholy, a little withdrawn, but kisses him, a bit more slowly, a bit more deeply. "I can't wait to see."

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He shifts to cover himself, a little. "I will be."

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"Do you want to talk about it?"

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"You should know." He can't seem to quite meet Temple's eye. "I thought you'd caught it already. I'm sorry."

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He tries to resume snuggling. "Noticing what? What's wrong? Is this- you don't think you're good enough for me to like?"

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Raafi stiffens slightly when Temple touches him, but goes pliant almost immediately; he doesn't snuggle up but he does cooperate with being snuggled, and rests his head on Temple's shoulder. "I'm not, actually. Good, I mean. In the technical sense. It's - there's a story, but. I made my decision, and that matters more than anything else."

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"Oh. Is this about the detect evil kind of spells? I don't care. I like the way you are. Not your classification."

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Some of the tension drains out of him at that, and his hand goes to Temple's arm. "It matters more than I think you realize. But. Thank you."

"I should tell the story, maybe. I don't like to, but I think you should hear it."

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Temple pulls him into a kiss. And then says. "Go on."

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He lets himself smile, for a moment.

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"So - I brought up the example of a murderer at the gallows, earlier; that's - not as bad as it gets, unfortunately."

"Once, about... oh, ten or twelve years ago, now, I was out traveling, and met a man who asked for aid. He lived in a nearby town, with his family, and his clan and another local clan were feuding. And his daughter had fallen in love with a boy from the other clan, and he found out, and he beat her; half to death, from the sound of it. And the boyfriend found out, and rescued her, and brought her to his church, and they healed her, and summoned a kind of angel called a hound archon to bring the man in for justice. And the man's clan saw the archon, and hid him, and helped him get away, and that's when he found me. His clan was the minority in that town, and he was traveling to a larger one, nearby, where there were more of them, where they'd shelter him and send fighters to the first town, to get the daughter back again."

 

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"And I have an obligation. To do the best I'm able, to help people travel, not just to make an attempt."

"There's a spell that can hedge out angels. Circle of protection against good. It's an evil spell. I cast it anyway, the next morning when he caught up to us, and used the time it bought me to cast dismissals until I managed to send the archon back to his native plane."

"I don't know what happened after that. I brought the man to his destination and moved on. But. That wasn't a good action. And I can summon demons, now, if I need to, and hound archons won't answer me."

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"Oh, I am sorry that... I don't know. As principles go it is... I guess neutral is the technical term." Snuggle. "I am sorry that the world is complicated like that and just taking people places isn't just straightforwardly good." Pause. "Also, I guess it's their prerogative, but that doesn't make me like hound archons much."

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Wry grin; hug. "You shouldn't judge without meeting one."

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"I am aware! But how I will ever manage that if they don't accept your summons?" Snuggle. "But, more seriously, when something like that happens, could you try convince the man to not seek revenge? Or for the archon to try a diplomatic solution? ...does the spell still count as evil if you cast with good intentions?"

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"It does, yes. Opposing an angel is one of those things there isn't much of a grey area about."

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"What about my other questions? Sorry for asking too many at once."

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Kiss. "I did try diplomacy; I wasn't as good at it back then. Not that anyone can talk a hound archon off a trail."

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"Still... this sounds unnecessarily rigid? Maybe angels are busy with other things or something, but... I don't know if I was called into the situation I would care way more about getting the two groups to get along than to chase down one - admittedly violent - man. That's... just common sense."

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Snuggle. "They're very rigid, yes. Angels understand evil even less than paladins understand chaos; they wouldn't know where to start, with something like that."

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"I find what the guy did to be very hard to understand, but still..." Sigh. "That sort of thing is not completely gone from our world, but it sounds like the sort of thing that goes away with improved quality of life. So maybe the solution is bringing glorious industrial and magical revolution to your world, but with solar panels from the start instead of smoke stacks."

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"Sounds lovely."

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"I try, my love." Kiss.

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