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Nov 17, 2019 5:03 PM
Shift!Fenris in AA
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"Could an Artefact stop a bond then? Or be bound to two people taking turns?"

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"The first one, absolutely. They frequently do so, even. Most Artefacts prefer not to move on to a new partner until after their previous one has died, and will accordingly refuse to bond to someone new until then if it is attempted. They're more likely to accept people their late partners were close to - spouses, lovers, children, friends. Aside from that, bonding involves a brief exchange of mana, which allows the Artefact to asses their new partner's personality before bonding, and vice versa. If they don't like you, they won't bond.

"As for sharing Artefacts, well, I have heard of it happening. If two people have an exceptionally close bond, an Artefact might agree to working with each one. Two Artefacts will roughly never agree to bonding with the same person, however - and they can tell if there is or was another bond, they leave remnants." 

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Okay, it doesn't sound like he can check any of those claims in the chance that he will need to put "liberate Artefacts" in his to-do list. Also, he needs to figure out a way back home before his brothers get too desperate.

"I should change shape. Is there anywhereI could do it privately... and then dispose of the skin?"

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Dispose of the skin. Well that sounds gross. Also interesting! 

"There's not much private space in a fort like this," he admits, "Would my quarters do? How messy is this exactly?" The Captains, the Commander, and his brother and himself have private quarters, but his are the only ones he can rightly offer up. 

"As for the skin... well, someone could bury or burn it?" 

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"It dissolves on its own, but that also works. And I could just do it anywhere with one or two feet radius, but it's not something pleasant to look at."

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Better to spare everyone the distraction, he supposes. "I suppose a storage room would do just as well, then," he says. He motions for Zephyrinus to follow him out of the room, through a door which leads to the hallway. There are a few mostly empty rooms meant for administrative supplies in the command center. They haven't recieved the latest shipment yet, so there should be enough room for the man to change shapes. 

He unlocks one of them with a tap and a thread of mana, offering the open door to Zephyrinis. Inside is a room of about six feet squared, with some boxes stacked up two feet deep in the back.

"Will this do?" 

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"This works fine. It will just take me a minute." He steps inside.

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He closes the door - it opens from the inside without need for a key. He leans against the wall beside it while he waits, ruffling his hair and carefully checking himself over for any injuries, now that he has a moment. Just bruises, it looks like. Good.

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If Jaim is paying attention, he might hear something like a wet sound coming from the room, but it isn't that loud. And indeed after a minute. "Come in." Zephyrinus says through the door.

He is now remarkably more human looking, his skin looks sunburned but still and his hair a firey-orange, but in shades that are human-passing if you don't squint too hard. The upper half of his loose robes are tied around his waist. "Do you see why it would be dangerous to set it on fire?"

He is pointing at the discarded skin, which is sitting on a bowl of ice.

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He enters, takes in his new appearance with interest, and looks as directed, "Yes," he admits after a moment, "That might be problematic. You said it would dissolve? Into more ice like this, or..." he trails off, uncertain. 

He also notes the partial nudity with some interest, but ignores it professionally. Not the time, the person or, given that this is Cialin, not Sanctuary, the place. 

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"It just dissolves, and first evaporates, the ice will make it take a bit longer, but not much. It's usually safe to touch with unbroken skin."

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"We could simply leave it here, in that case. I can lock this door to all except myself and the Commander, and inform her to keep it closed. There are other supplies closets." 

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Shrug. "I am going to spend the next while trying to acquire a power, but I can do that while answering your questions about my world, if you want."

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He smiles, "I would appreciate the chance to have them answered," he admits. "Though I think I'd like to sit while I ask," he says, making his way around the skin and his guest to perch on one of the crates at the back.

"First - can all your people change shapes in this way?"

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"Yes. It's possible to lose shapes. People are born with a hereditary quantity of them and can later acquire more in special locations called pools. People that have a single shape are known of and they don't have other shapes to change into, but it's very rare for to be born with just the one. It would be... irresponsible of their parents."

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"Irresponsible of the parents? If it's hereditary - people with only one shape are encouraged to have children with people with more? And why irresponsible?"

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His face looks strained. "They are hereditary in a non-straightforward way." Pause. "A child will get all shapes their parents have in common, plus one of the shapes they don't have in common. If two single-shaped parents have a kid, the kid will be born with a single shape. It's irresponsible to do that because having two shapes resets your age and if you only have one you grow old and die."

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He stills. 

"Your people are immortal?" He asks, stunned. 

He doesn't think on it, often, how much longer he's likely to live than his brothers - and others. They're all so young now, and it wouldn't do to dwell on it. Still, he knows that the time will come when they grow old and leave him, and he will be without them for the next two hundred years. 

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The Nomad unfurls gently, reaching out to his mind to offer soothing reassurance. He might be without them, but he will never be alone. 

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"Aging is not a problem if you have two shapes. If that's what you're asking. Or at least, if the shapes are young enough. Shapes have a reset age, which is the age when you first shifted in the case of your born shapes, or the age when you first acquired a shape for the acquired ones."

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No aging. Gods. 

He focuses on the answers, "Can you get stuck with a second form which is forever some young age? Or can you only change once you are older?" 

 

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"Yes, but also technically yes. A shape can die by accident or disease. Shifting is painful and doing on purpose is very hard until you are in your late teens. And shapes do age, it would be inconvenient, but one could just stick to a too young shape for years at a time."

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He nods, "Alright. And the magic? Aside from the shapes. They change with the shapes, or at least... the subset of powers you can get?" He has been paying attention. 

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"Yes. You can sacrifice a shape to another when a shape dies. You still lose access to it, but you gain a power, which is based on the combined shapes. Hibera - the shape I was - has themes of ice, permanence, stillness and so on, and this Aestes shape I am in right now has theme of fire, light and change. And it's more suited for communication and transportation as well. Which is why I am currently in it. One can rebind a power, losing the old one and getting another in its place. Which is what I am doing. It's painful."

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"So you get a power on top of the one related to shapes if you sacrifice a dead shape? And, is there a way to be more comfortable while you rebind a power, do you want to sit or something?" Leaving guests to be uncomfortable: not good manners. He's supposed to be representing the kingdom here. 

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