May 21, 2022 2:58 PM
Xian in Cosel
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Well, Durante may not know how to horrifically abuse the powers of shadow or stone elementals to his military gain (wait, no, he knows how to abuse both of them - lightning or... water?), but he certainly knows how to use Adamant.

He's potentially interested in buying this Adamant, since the ability to make metal would help a great deal. Does his Adamant mage want to come with?

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She'll come! He'll need her if he wants to actually buy the elemental, he's not a mage and can't hold onto one of the amulets properly.

The seller is perfectly happy to explain to him that Shadow elementals can permit you to teleport. (Between dark places.) If that's the sort of thing that might be interesting.

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(Actually, he thinks that scrying would be much more useful, though he won't say it.)

He does think it's interesting, but he doesn't have the capital for two elementals for the moment. So, Adamant elemental.

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Adamant elemental is his! His mage takes the amulet and puts it on and can conduct the elemental along behind her, matching her gait. When they get back to where she's been working she starts taking off bits of its wings and also has it braiding her hair while she works.

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And what is the Adamant elemental's reaction to this? Does it have anything to, say, say about this program? Or is it just being a zombie?

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It's not saying anything at all! (On closer inspection it's probably a boy elemental but it's covered in a lot of metal so it's not easy to tell.)

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Then he will not worry about his exceptionally stoic probably-boy elemental.

... Actually, wait. Can't elementals also do crafting-magic?

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Assuming he remembers right, yes!

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In that case he is going to suggest that, if there's no magical reason why not he isn't aware of, she could get her job done much faster (and then she and her new comrades would have better armor, very important for her job) if the elemental participated in armormaking too!

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"Huh? No I couldn't, I'm using its magic. I'll run through both reserves after not too much of this."

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Oh, that makes sense. Carry on!

(Any crisis happen before the next day?)

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Nope! No crisis! The Adamant mage does have a screaming argument with her dad that ends in her making the Adamant pick the dad up and remove him from the scene but the dad doesn't come back after that.

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Just so long as the dad isn't damaged.

Durante wants to leave comparatively bright and early, as he told everyone he would! This will involve SO MUCH work getting people who got drunk in the festival out of bed, and SO MUCH use of his Officer's Voice. (If people want to desert immediately, well, he hasn't paid them yet, and better now then later. But if not they should get ready to get on the road.)

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One guy makes a rude gesture at him and goes home. Everybody else is still game to get going.

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Excellent! Let's get this army on the road. Durante is ready with advice and assistance and morale-building (he has SO MANY SONGS and is now getting to the point where he can translate lyrics on the fly) to keep his caravan moving.

He won't be making any objections if the noncombatants want an early stop, but that's because he wants to get some training underway.

(He also wants to have a quiet conversation with his Adamant-mage, once they're away from the city, about tech sharing, if they can find a moment.)

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They're mostly used to doing a lot of walking but marching is a different story and they don't have unlimited endurance for it even with the Adamant carrying a lot of their stuff.

The Adamant mage (her name is Pajuna) is amenable to a quiet conversation, though she brings the elemental, possibly in case Durante decides to attack her or something.

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Well, before they arrive he's going to stop, and pause, and smile at Pajuna and her elemental, and quietly draw his gun without pointing it at anything he does not want destroyed, and hand it to her carefully, safety-on.

"This is a military airpistol," he says, treating it as a loan-word. "You can think of it as the next step after a bow, the way a bow is the next step after a javelin. The javelin delivers the power of an instant's exertion at a distance, and the bow concentrates your muscles to deliver the force of more than an instant's draw. The airpistol uses your strength to compress air, then uses the compressed air's desire to escape to drive a bullet -" he uses the native word for a crafted projectile made for a sling "- through an enemy. I want to know if you can replicate copies of this pistol made wholly out of titanium; if so, they would be an amazingly valuable advantage, and one no one knows we have."

(And they'll also be obsolete as soon as he gets an R&D facility that can turn out chemical-propellant rifles, let alone railguns.)

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"...gosh," she says. "Can I take it apart, to see how it is inside...?"

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He'll demonstrate! It's supposed to be possible to field-strip and reassemble without difficulty; here's the magazine with the bullets in it and the spring action that makes it go, the barrel, the slide, the safety so you can't shoot people... it's a really neat little device, if a little bulky for a pistol. (Given the need for air instead of a better propellant.)

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Cool. She doesn't have Air but the other mage does, if that would help make them work faster? She thinks she can do the spring and everything assuming titanium is in fact the kind of metal you want for that.

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He's happy to discuss the specific metals to use in more detail! Titanium is generally good for weight and strength, but there's different metals useful for different things, and he's happy to go over all the principles of gunmaking in great detail.

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Pajuna's very intent on learning all the weird stuff he knows. When she has some magic back they can check if the gun can fire through a ward.

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Sounds good!

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(Thank you for the reminder that all of his technology will become obsolete as soon as magic completely changes the battlefield, he thinks but does not say. At least his tactical mind won't.)

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She gets to work on replicating the gun parts with bits of metal picked off the elemental's halo.

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