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Dec 07, 2021 1:21 AM
alerans in skyfire
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Lexius doesn't know what the fuck just happened. He was walking through the Academae campus and he was passing by the fountain and everything suddenly - twisted. And then he was somewhere else - between impossibly tall buildings, made of sooty gray stone and iron and glass. He's never felt so much iron in one place. And the smell - almost completely inorganic, like oil and burnt grease. It's dark, not that it matters - he could navigate by metalcraft alone, in this place.

"Where the fuck am I?" he asks rhetorically in a language that hasn't been seriously spoken on this planet in hundreds of years.

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"Where the fuck did you come from?" Says a startled-looking person pointing a knife at him, in a language that bears any similarities to it but is nonetheless incomprehensible. 

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knife. What, was this guy in the middle of dinner?

Lexius draws his sword, a fluid motion too fast to follow, and points it at the moron in turn, the metal glowing cherry-red with heat. "Drop the blade before you hurt yourself."

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Red glowing sword, what? The moron is very worried about this development! 

His friend down the alley, not so much. He draws a small black thing out of his jacket and points it at Lexius, clearly expecting this to worry the stranger as much as or more than the sword worries the knife wielder. 

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The level of confidence that man is displaying in his small black object is worrisome. Even Lexius' poor watercraft can pick that up, through the man's apparently nonexistent shields.

He breathes in the smoky air and, in the blink of an eye, he's at the other end of the alley and his sword has bisected whatever that thing is.

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Based on the shouting, this man is surprised! Or maybe he's shouting because of all that heat so close to his body. Or maybe it's both! Both seems likely. 

Behind them, the shouting man's 'friend' makes a break for the end of the alley the three of them are standing in. 

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Lexius has an idea, and that idea is to cause the man's feet to sink up to the ankles in the weird stone under their feet. No running. (Maybe the guy has enough earthcraft to free himself and get away, but based on the clownery that has been going down in this alley, he kind of doubts it.)

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This produces yet more incomprehensible shouting!

Panicked, the man in front of him points his newly shortened black object at Lexius again and pulls the trigger. 

One might assume that something is supposed to happen when he does that, and the fact that nothing does is a result of Lexius' work on it. He pulls the trigger again, swears as it does nothing again, and then attempts to hit the unnaturally fast red-hot sword wielding person with it instead.

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"Fucking really?"

Lexius swirls around him. Slam goes the man into the stone. Crack go several of his bones.

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And he's out like a light, which is probably for the best. It's certainly easier on Lexius' ears, anyway.

The guy buried up to his shins in cement is still shouting, though.

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The shouts attract the attention of a passerby, who leans around the corner to investigate, taking in the scene with interest. 

"Hello!" he calls down the alley, the word accented slightly oddly but still, actually, understandable. Then he asks a question in whatever language Lexius' ineffective attackers were speaking.

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"Salve!" Lexius calls back. "I don't speak whatever language that is!"

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There's a pause, and then he mutters something indistinguishable but incredulous-sounding. Then he waves a hand purposely, and repeats himself, "Are you speaking Latin?" 

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"Yes. You're not, and I can still understand you. Are you - telepathic, or something?"

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"I'm not good enough with mist to be telepathic," he says, shaking his head, "This is a sky trick. I am good enough to make them forget what they just saw, though," he motions to the two guys, "Though I dunno if that one will need it," he muses, hand coming up to cup his chin as he looks the unconscious one over.

(He also takes that moment to mentally poke at the part of his mind which houses his Intuition, trying to get it to spit out something clearer than 'Something Is Wrong Here', to no avail.)

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"Why bother making them forget the fight? They're just bandits. Maybe it'll teach them not to fuck with swordsmen they don't know."

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Well, now he's confused! And concerned, "If you leave them aware of what actually happened here - the cement trick and the burning, mostly - there's a chance the Vindice," a word which carries along with it the concept of 'widely feared enforcers of law', "Will come after you for it. I can try to leave them with vague memories of attacking a strange swordsman and regretting it, though, if it's important to you? I might not succeed, I'm still new to this, but I can try." 

The man stuck in the ground objects to this idea loudly. And then he objects to it silently, as another hand wave renders him muted.

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"...not that important. Are you saying... I don't even know what you're saying. I figured out already that you're not human, but - you not only can't furycraft, you don't want people to know furycrafting exists?"

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"Never said I wasn't human," he says, and, "What's furycrafting?"

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"The thing humans do. Manipulating the natural elements."

He holds out his hand and crafts a curl of flame. "You do... whatever 'sky' and 'mist' are, humans do furycrafting."

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"...Yeah, now that you mention it... translation error I guess," Harmony translation usually doesn't do that, but at least it's corrected itself now. "Supposedly Flames come from the soul, though, so you could probably do it if you went active. Anyway, better safe than sorry when it comes to the Vindice. Can you get him out of the ground once I've wiped him?" 

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"Yeah, sure. Why didn't they use their Flames when I was fighting them, by the way?"

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"They're not Active. I think our best estimate is less than 0.001% of the population world-wide is? And almost everyone else is like these two, wiped if they see any evidence." He steps closer to the man, into his reach, and grabs the fist he tries to swing at him before it can hit. His other hand goes to his forehead and then he's dropping on his ass with his feet still trapped in the concrete, as unconscious as his fellow. 

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"So they just... can't do anything? That little knife he was threatening me with was his best bet? I almost feel sorry for the poor bastards."

He considers. "Well, he could at least have gotten a proper sword."

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"If you carried a sword around here without a way to conceal it you'd probably get arrested," he says as he makes his way over to the other guy to wipe him too, just to be sure. "If he couldn't get a gun like his friend here, the knife was probably the best he could do." He leans over and pokes the guy in the forehead, and then straightens and tilts his head at the swordsman, "I'm Jamie," he introduces himself, "You're really not from around here, are you?" 

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"Oh, let me-" He crouches to release the earth's grip on the bandit, then straightens up. "Alexianus Rufinius. Lexius, for short. If they don't let you have swords and most of you don't have crafting or Flames how are you supposed to defend yourselves, your fists?"

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