Feb 03, 2023 7:48 AM
It's 1913 in Sicily, where Sable lives
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"Well that's a relief," she replies with a giggle. "I don't even like men that way, so it's quite convenient that you have no such intentions."

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"Have you goodbyes to say or letters to send in Sicily? We can be there again this afternoon."

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No. Just. No. She is not going back to get pleaded with to stay.

<Damned right you aren't,> concurs Erika.

Nova conjures a pen in mindspace and holds it up questioningly.

<Nova's right, Bria. A letter wouldn't let them find us or stop us, and might keep them from searching,> Maya notes.

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"I would have said no," Bria says with a wan smile, "but I came around to the idea that a letter might stop them from searching as hard, and needn't give them any clues as to finding me. Have you pen and paper I could borrow?"

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"I've a study you can use, yes. I must finish unloading and go talk to various overly important bureaucrats about being paid for this cargo first, alas."

The last crate settles on the pier, forming a fairly impressive collection of Stuff.

"To the fore hatches, now. I'm not completely sure where to begin teaching, I admit. I'm unusual."

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Bria follows like an inky duckling. "I used to tutor the other students, so I know a little, and have a few ideas about how to start. It depends on whether you want to focus on shipboard things or spirit bearer things first."

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"I think it depends on whether you want to focus on shipboard things or spirit bearer things. Also, this is a decidedly unusual ship. The knowledge may not transfer. I can at least teach you about monsters..."

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"I love unusual ships. Ships in general, but unusual ships especially. There are reasons why I would especially love to learn how a ship like this is made, in particular. But that's a story for another day."

She hums thoughtfully. "As much as I want to learn both immediately, and as much as I'd love to learn ship things and start being useful, I remember hearing that a bearer's growth is easiest and fastest in the first week. I'd be a fool to pass that up. What do you think of starting on that, and fitting ship-related education in between, in breaks and when I'm magicked out?"

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"Sensible. I saw your summons, as they were- that will be your first spell. Everyone gets one. One thing that is important to consider is how you wish to grow. Flexible and varied? Defensive? Fast? A builder and enchanter like me? The first week is where you grow fastest like you said, to set an early foundation. You can push your limits with effort, but only so much."

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<Well, that confirms whether or not we're visible,> Mays notes.

Bria smiles sappily. "Well, if you could see them, I guess the time for that story is now. I was delighted that my girls got to be my first spell. This... is kind of personal, but... my 'summons' are three girls who've shared my head with me for years. They have their own desires and dreams, their own interests and skills. The way we look at things, we're all in this together, so I'd like a big part of my focus to be enabling them to stand on their own. Part of that might be just developing my magic enough that they can express their own, but part of that will require some building and enchanting like you suggested. Did you enchant the core yourself? We'll also have to figure out our fighting styles, both individually and as a group. Beyond that, I don't know what we need to focus on."

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"...I can't say I've ever heard of such a thing. Not outside of unreliable anecdotes. Are you quite sure of it? I don't know how it will shake out. In particular, it is known that spirit bearers cannot ignite more of their own. Many have tried. But magic follows will. And yes, I did- and other equipment besides. Not all of the ship is magic, I have engines and the more that works with reality the less effort I must expend to sail her, but enough."

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"We have no idea. I just know that they're their own people, with their own separate natures, for all that we're all running on my magic. Who knows what we'll manage! Just this morning we pushed a little bit and they were able to become tangible to me and each other, and that didn't feel very hard at all."

She hums thoughtfully. "I've never read or heard of a spirit bearer being multiple people at once before, though I haven't found great literature on the subject at all really. Maybe we're unprecedented, who knows?"

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"Who knows indeed. One thing you must know- That pushing? It gets harder and harder, starts taking careful practice and visualization, and only gets easier as you master the abilities you already have, and achieve great things with them. I would not at all be surprised if they can become as physically mighty as you, and wield their own magic, in time. When we're done here, I think some demonstrations and spear drill is in order."

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"Agreed. I wonder if any of us will stick with the standard spear, as well. I know I personally took better to whip, sword, and bow, in mundane training."

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<I wanna try fans, and maybe some other things too,> chirps Erika!

Nova conjures up an image of a rapier, alongside a staff with a crook on the end, and looks back and forth between them before shrugging.

<Shield, hammer, and something heavy and ranged all appeal to me,> adds Maya.

Bria giggles at all that. "The girls all eagerly chimed in with what weapon variations they're interested in."

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"Forcing your own weapon to change is permanent. It can change back, but it is the same as pushing for more spells. We can acquire samples to practice with, first."

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She nods. "Good to know. We'll have to see if they even can get their own weapon states separate from mine before we start doing much changing. practicing with mundane versions to see what we can all use sounds worthwhile. Maybe a first test, after we see where we're all suited, could be changing to something that all of us can use decently well, then one of the girls trying to get the basic spear without changing mine?"

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"We have reached the end of my expertise but it does not sound Unreasonable."

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"Hehe, maybe this is sufficiently uncharted territory that we should write a book about learning all these new things!"

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"Perhaps you could. Are you familiar with any sort of craft, or engineering? Enchanting works best if you are."

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She nods, "Not formally educated in it, but studied a fair bit of clockwork as a hobby, and sculpted some in clay."

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"We can try that later as well, then. You can rest a bit longer while I handle the cargo and take care of some things. You've had a harrowing experience."

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She closes her eyes, takes a slow, deep breath, and opens them again. "Yeah, we have. You're right. Maybe we'll head back to the cabin and just spend some time being close for a bit. Thank you again, Nick."

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"I also had an unpleasant time around my awakening. Though it wasn't a... Single incident." Sigh. "I won't bother you with that, though."

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"We'd be glad to listen sometime, if you wanted to share. For now, though, we're heading back to the cabin. You can meet everyone properly when you get back, I suppose. Arrivederci!"

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