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Aug 08, 2020 7:26 AM
Abras Ashkevron at the start of the book 3 timeline (A Song for Two Voices)
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He crams that into his head too, and nods. Puts his hands in his pockets in what he hopes looks like a casual gesture but is actually checking if there's anything in there that might be a note from his future self.

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Sadly there is not. 

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Damn. Does that mean he won't write the note, or that the dream won't pick it up because the note was caused by the dream? What if the reason he won't write the note is because now it won't do any good? Does that mean he should write it anyway? Or . . . should have been the sort of person who would write it anyway? If he thinks too hard about this right now he's going to forget one of the things he's supposed to be remembering. Instead he asks, "So, if you really are immortal, how old are you?"

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"Well over a thousand," Leareth says. "I am not going to tell you the exact number at this time." 

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That's an odd thing to have be a secret. Possibly it would be a clue to something important, if he knew it.  Or he's just keeping as much as possible secret on general principles, in which case Abras can hardly blame him. He should read more history and try to figure out which possible ages would be the sort of thing someone would hide. 

"If you've spent that long being the sort of person who tries to take over countries, I'm surprised I haven't heard of you before." Not that he knows the man's name, but you'd think he would be kind of hard to miss. It's evidence that he isn't really immortal.

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"I have not only taken over countries. In fact I took a very long break from it. Also, the way that my immortality works is not that this current body has been alive the entire time. I can still die, and it has not generally been of old age although sometimes I have been lucky; it is simply that I return. On general principle I am not going to tell you anything more about the method." 

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"Understandable." But damn frustrating, that knowledge that important should belong to this person instead of literally anyone else.

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"Do you have any other questions?" 

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"None I think you'll want to answer. I expect you're in the same situation."

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Nod. "Well, I am not sure if we will have the chance to speak again, but it seems plausible, and perhaps both of us can in the interim consider what sorts of questions we would be willing to answer." 

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"I agree." 

Are they, he wonders, just going to stand here awkwardly until they wake up, like guests waiting for a party to end.

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Fortunately the dream takes mercy on them and ends fairly soon after that. 

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Abras rolls out of bed, writes down the numbers and the quote from allegedly-Taver, and then flops back into bed and stares at the ceiling. 

If this mage has actually figured out how to come back from the dead, if he wasn't lying and it wasn't just a one-off accident, that's the most important thing that ever happened. It isn't clear, from what he said, whether it would be possible to use the same method to bring back people who have already died, but the idea occurred to him and now he can't unthink it, and it hurts like only a very, very small amount of hope can hurt. He doesn't know how much of the night is left, but he's going to spend it crying. Lendel, ashke, I miss you, I don't know what I would do to see you again.

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Yfandes wakes up at around her usual time. :...Chosen? Are you all right?: 

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:Um. Not really. I had the dream and realized I was dreaming and then the mage realized he was dreaming too and--things happened. Can I come down and sit with you while I talk about it?:

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:–oh, goodness. Yes, come right over - maybe you should grab something to eat on the way, this sounds like the sort of conversation that could take a while: 

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:Um. Yeah, okay.: He doesn't want to interact with people and finds the idea of food very unappealing right now but Yfandes has a point (Yfandes always has a point). :I'll be right down.: He scurries in and out of the dining hall with his head down and is curled up in Yfandes' stall with a couple of apples as soon as he possibly can be.

:So apparently we've been having the same dream. And now we can talk to each other in it. And he says he's over a thousand years old and comes back from the dead.:

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:Wow. Er, all right. I have a lot of questions!: She nuzzles at his hair. :Also that sounds very scary. And - well, hard to believe. Did he have some sort of proof about it?: 

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:It was definitely scary and hard to believe. He said he had proof--said he knew the prime factors of a number on the statue of King Valdemar and had spoken to Taver eight hundred years ago--here, I wrote it down.: He takes the paper with the numbers and the quote (somewhat crumpled and in very shaky handwriting, but legible) out of his pocket.

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:Huh! That's really interesting, actually. It's known to be a very difficult math problem, getting the prime factors of a big number like that - it's not one you can really use magic at either, right. Seems rather convenient, but - I suppose if he really is immortal, he might've thought about scenarios where he'd want to prove it. Hmm, I'm trying to think of ways that could be faked...:

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:Well, you could look at the product and try every pair of numbers that it might be, and if you were fast enough at division and willing to put in a lot of time--or pay a bunch of people to put in less time each--you could do it eventually, but why would someone go to that much trouble to pretend to be immortal? I mean, he probably wants to mess with me in any way possible because I'm maybe going to fight him, but he didn't know he was going to talk to me last night--unless he did--and he had the numbers memorized. Or he wants me to look at the statue for some other reason.:

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:I'm not sure how he could've known he would be talking to you last night! I suppose it's possible he thought he'd talk to you at some point, and prepared it a while ago for that reason... Hmm, the only other thing I can think of is if there's some secret organization and the statue-maker wrote down the numbers and kept them for later generations, but - that's almost as implausible as immortality, actually, and then there's the Taver part as well... We should talk to Taver anyway, this is the sort of thing he ought to know about: 

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:Good idea. Um, do you want to talk to him? Does he talk to people who aren't Lancir much?:

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:Rarely. Maybe a little more so than other Companions, since he's the Groveborn. I think both of us should go - it makes sense for you to explain directly, I think: 

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:Both of us sounds good.: Abras has never interacted with Taver and finds him intimidating and having Yfandes there will help a lot.

 :And there was another thing. He said that he hadn't lived all that time without dying. Said he had died and come back. Is that possible? People coming back from the dead?:

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