This post has the following content warnings:
Aug 13, 2022 2:28 PM
+ Show First Post
Total: 889
Posts Per Page:
Permalink

Tiny white text spreads before Marianne's eye.

Professor Ravi. Soul - Body.
Don't mind me.

Permalink

"Augury is a prophecy calculator. It returns a positive, negative, or neutral answer to a question regarding future events. It is not adequate to the task of always returning the correct answer — but cast at the fifth rank its conjectures are superhuman and cover the next seven days. My question would be if you are satisfied with your choice of materials. Thirty thousand kisses is — perhaps three-quarters of the price you could find at Bogrine."

Permalink

"APPROACH AND BEGIN THE ASSIGNMENT, APPRENTICE."

Permalink

Lily nods, approaches the pile, and begins looking at the stack of materials on the floor.

"May I handle them?"

Permalink

"IT IS CERTAIN."

Permalink

Lily kneels on the floor by the pile, and begins sorting through smaller pieces of material and looking at them individually, prioritizing variety. She has to understand what kinds of things are even available before she can ask sensible questions.

A bar of silver-shimmering material, light in her hand like aluminum - 

Permalink

Mithril. Metal - Soul.
Lightweight and strong, suitable for armor and cutting blades. In magical foci, draws power from the wielder's gentle sentiments, especially love and sorrow.

Permalink

A handful of gemstones. The first is orange -  citrine, perhaps? - that sings with energy, hot against her skin. The second, a ruby, clings to her and draws a flush from her pale flesh. The third is an emerald, perhaps? Its magical properties are less obvious even in her hand - 

She takes a moment to read the tiny white text. 

Permalink

Eternal Citrine. Fire - Body.
Bestows heat, fuel, and energy, serving as a natural capacitor for mana. Allows a magical foci to be damagingly overcharged for additional power if necessary. 

Blood Ruby. Blood - Necrotic.
A parasitic material formed from the harvested soul of a scavenger. In a focus, serves to convey the Wild Gift of blood magic. 

Emerald. Earth - Mind.
Known for the ability to reveal the truth, this gemstone yields its power to principled and honest mages. In a focus, can be used for the set-spell Lesser Telepathy. 

Permalink

A metal bar with a deep red tinge and a block of wood that's still leafy and green, what are these -

Permalink

Ashkalt. Metal - Body.
A natural conduit for raw and unshaped magical energy, Ashkalt channels elementalist magic strongly, particularly the powers of Sorceresses. Able to alloy well with other magical metals, Ashkalt is one of the Three Etching Metals that correlate with the three types of Witch. 

Sacred Ashwood. Nature - Life.
A living wood even after having been cut, Sacred Ashwood is capable of explosive growth and withdrawal. Used primarily in the construction of staffs that can shrink to the size of wands, this material naturally resists magic and provides grounding to wards.

Permalink

There's so much. She doesn't even know where to begin.

Is Marianne doing any better?

Permalink

"Thank you for explaining, ma'am." Then she hesitates.

Exposing additional genuine vulnerability to the person who just hurt her badly is difficult. She does need to force herself because this is actually serious and she needs to be her absolute and endorsed best.

She breathes. The weight of Professor Ravi's presence makes it difficult, but she can still breathe.

"—I am not sure what spiritual qualities I might possess, ma'am. My personality is liable to change from hour to hour, upon the expectations and predilections of who I'm interacting with."

Ow ow ow fuck. She feels like she's twisting her own shoulder out of socket by putting voice to such things. Blessedly she is a distance from Isabel, or she would not be able to make the admission at all.

Permalink

"Who are you when you're alone?"

Permalink

She is never alone. Even in moments where Lillian is away, the internet is a sea of people to shape herself about. It would be a pathetic thing to say, and she doesn't expect Professor Ravi can work with 'nothing.'

She would pick the persona she endorses the most, that she thinks would be the best to have in the world — except Professor said explicitly not to choose something aspirational rather than descriptive.

What is it like to be her? If she dropped her current shell of 'deferential student' would she actually see anything under there, or would she just stand there catatonic, no interests or desires? She doesn't want to—

Permalink

"You like dragons. Why?"

Permalink

"...I'm sorry, ma'am?"

Permalink

"You can fake a lot of emotions, but excitement is an expensive one. You looked thrilled about our resident financier, and I speculate it's not his profession."

Permalink

Marianne has the tendency to divide people into two classes: friends and strangers.

The former are fun and worthy and trustworthy. In practice they are extensions of herself, she can generally talk them around to whatever she wants. The other class contains potential friends but is largely boring evil people she would never dream of wanting to interact with.

Professor Ravi is definitely not a friend — but right now she doesn't feel like a stranger either. The Professor wants to refine her as efficiently as possible, just as Marianne is expected to refine her mothergifts. She isn't going to judge or laugh at Marianne, she is occupied enough.

Marianne bites down on her lip, closes her eyes. and says what comes to mind.

"His form is very elegant. There is a lot of appeal in it. Watching his muscles move is splendid, I think I could do it all day. His wings make me — fall over myself a bit. His spines, the fire just behind his teeth, he looks actually properly engineered for mass murder. Sorry, can he hear me?"

Permalink

"No. Your girl talk is safe with me. Mass murder. Are you a weapons nut? F15s and M1s?"

Permalink

"No ma'am."

Permalink

"Pity. I might've shared my collection with you.

It is an uncharacteristic thing for a human to admit to appreciating, but even more uncharacteristic is the — nakedness. I would have expected a random witch with that trait to try to dress it up somehow, try to make it reflect better.

Anyway, I diagnose you with sociopathy and hot for dragons. Your treatment is holding this."

The air breaks over Professor Ravi's hand and she holds out a fistful of materials, predominantly black and scarlet and violet.

Permalink

Onyx. Mind - Necrotic. 
With abrasive and unfriendly energies, Onyx yields its power to witches of strongly independent bent and those who oppose the world around them. In a focus, it can be used for the set-spell Mind Hex. 

Bloodstone. Blood - Necrotic. 
Able to extract the life energy from blood it touches, Bloodstone draws power from bloodshed, producing a temporary surge of magical potential in long combats. Often used in relic daggers to extract the soul for storage.

Keterite. Earth - Metal. 
Heavy and unrefined, Keterite is used in weapons meant to pierce armor. This material alloys well with other metals, and in magical foci it focuses the mana-direction of the implement, providing a kind of artificial willpower. 

Evermetal. Metal - Soul. 
A supernatural alloy of steel, Evermetal is malleable and easy to work with, lending itself to swords and foci alike. Reliable and stable, the properties of Evermetal are some of the best-understood of supernatural materials in witchdom.

Arcanite. Mind - Soul. 
An exotic crystallization of mana not dissimilar from Kissmail, Arcanite is useful in divination and as a power refiner. Known to have addictive effects from repeated casting using it. 

Hoardstone. Earth - Body.
The result of keeping of ordinary jewels by a dragon, Hoardstone is the gem equivalent of Wyrmgold. Like that material, Hoardstone encourages ambition and greed. It acts as a vault for magical power and is known to be useful in safeguarding one's holdings. 

Amethyst. Mind - Soul. 
The gem associated with the most abstract forms of sorcery, Amethyst yields its power to the calm, self-possessed, analytically-minded, and critical. In a focus, it can be used for the set-spell Dispel Magic. 

Permalink

The metals and stones vibrate upon the floor as Accountant shifts to a more comfortable position. His head looms over Lillian's; she can feel the heat of the steam even a meter away.

"I HAVE SEEN A HUNDRED WITCHES RUINED BY EXCESS FAITH IN THEIR INSTRUMENTS. KNOW THIS THEN: THAT THIRD RANK IDENTIFICATION IS NOT THE WHOLE OF LORE."

Permalink

"What would you recommend, then, for... someone who - owes everything she has to someone else."

Total: 889
Posts Per Page: