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Fatebinder Ophelia Vaudelle lands in the Circle of Magic 'verse
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-- Her spell connects with Fifth Eye, who's struggling with the hint of Lantry's sepia in his system, in the moment his cone of twisting colors is about to reach out, forcing frenetic adjustment, adjustment that sweeps a fourth body that Fifth Eye wants anywhere but where he's going into the cone --


An Archon's servant's magic fights the unspoken corollary of an Edict.  Both of them win, from a certain point of view.

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And is thrown into the tower that is the center of the Winding Circle Temple.


In the midst of an earthquake. The building is stable, at least, but people, most in single colored robes, are streaming out the large door in the center. The clock from the top of the tower is thrown out of time. The ground is roiling beneath them, and if she can sense this she will find that the earthquake is not only powerfully magical, but interfering with the spells in the ground beneath her.


What the bloody fuck!

Shit shit shit what's even causing this - it can't be - not again - she promised herself that she wouldn't let this happen -

She joins the crowds getting the fuck out of there, and hisses at the ground to fucking stop that this is not Azure it is not permitted to be quaking right now --

(She's not sure that she would normally believe that this would help, but right now, every edge is worth it - and so she does, as she well must, because she's attempting to improvise a solution to this problem out of the ragged edges of the Edict of Stone, her existing knowledge of magical lore, and sheer bloody-minded resolve that she won't let another place suffer like Azure - and frankly, the only thing she knows to be helpful is her knowledge of magical lore.)

No matter what happens, the people near her feel a surge of Vigor through them as a mage in somewhat fancy black robes joins the evacuation, storming onto the nearest bit of exposed stone and slamming a staff into it furiously.


The earthquake thrashes around her. The magic in it fades where her Edict faces it, but the power is in the moving stone and earth. It has to go somewhere. The earthquake around her eases, but doesn’t end. 

The main quake lasts about 8 seconds.

The acolytes and dedicates look at her, but continue to evacuate as she does so.

When everyone is safely outside, a man in yellow robes walks over to her. He looks older than most of the people around him, around his 50s. To magical senses, he is clearly magical, but a fairly plain sort, able to be molded into whatever is needed.


”Do you know what happened? I know of powers that can transport without visible travel, but none that create light. And none that would leave you sane enough to do.. whatever you did.”





"Well, Nerat was hardly sane to begin with, but who knows.  I think it must have been sigil magic, though - he had his puppet adjutant actually finish the spell, which suggests that it's probably not his Archonate that did it, if anyone's got teleportation in their portfolio it'd be --"  She cuts herself off, frustratedly.  "We don't have time for the theory discussion, there's people that need assistance lest they die.  I don't know this city but I do know how to heal and administrate, and I have a regrettable amount of experience with planning for earthquake recovery.  Point me where the help is needed."

...The power needs somewhere to go.

What if she wrests what remains from the quakes, along those same torn-open-feeling channels, and pulls that magic into area-effect healing spells, as she looks for the places that need the most help?  The Orphan Midwife's Sigil (- the Sigil of Life, for those that do not know her story -) has always been one she's had a knack for...


The man nods, grimacing.

"Yes. We weren't prepared for..whatever caused this. The earthquake, yes, but our disaster relief is centered on the areas we expected to be the worst off."

The aftershakes die off as those around the area start work, messages being delivered as attempts to coordinate the temple start in earnest.

If she wants to find the areas that need the most help, she's going to have to leave the temple. It's fairly isolated, though, and will take a few hours to reach the nearest city.

Within the temple, infirmaries have been set up for those who have been wounded, and people are being carried in as healers attempt triage.


It will take much less than several hours if she puts her back in, thank you.  Vigor marches work well on their own and that's before she adds Haste (from the Sigil of Force) and Lifely reinforcement to the equation.

"I'm going to put up a field of healing magic," she says, loudly, while theoretically blatantly lying; "It ought to last as long as nobody messes with it too much."  At which point she starts scribing the sigil for Restore the Land in an empty bit of field adjacent to the triage area.

(Belief is power, and they'll believe her when this starts working.)

"I can speed travel for a small group of responders; it may be that that's the best use of me after this is done."


When the healing aura starts, people are certainly confused, but most people seem to accept it. It’s the midst of a disaster, and no one has the energy to question this sort of thing. It might not get much belief, but it isn’t being disbelieved.


A messenger runs over to deliver a slate, which he reads before cursing quietly.

”That may be for the best once we sort out things here. I’d send Rosethorn and Lark, normally, Rosethorn has medicines and Lark is good at managing people, but their students are missing. Out on a walk and haven’t been seen since this morning.”

The dedicate sighs, deeply, before breathing in and out several times, clearly using some sort of meditation technique.

”I’m not familiar with any method to speed travel for a group on land, but if you have one I won’t refuse the offer.”

”Thank you. You haven’t found us at our best.” A rueful smile.

”I can figure out who to send with you.”


...The comment about 'not finding them at their best' draws a slightly surprised look to her face.

"On the contrary; I have found you and your people at your best.  Catastrophe has struck your very home and the first things you consider are going to the aid of others.  Fatebinder Ophelia Vaudelle of the Empire of Kyros, not that Kyros' Law holds on what I must assume to be another world entirely.  Despite the circumstances, I think working with you will be a pleasure.

"How many people are you thinking to send, and how close a march can they hold?  There's different tradeoffs I can make as regards capacity and speed."


A smile, and look of confusion cleared away quickly.

”Thank you. Initiate Dove, and well met. I can say the same.”

”I don’t know what standard of march you’re using, but I suspect most won’t. It’s not something training focuses on. Physical fitness in general…I can find some people, but I’d like to ask the Dedicate Superior what she thinks. Dedicate Moonstream’s better at this than I am, and has the final authority in this sort of emergency.”


"Ah.  Noncombatants.  Peace upon us all, as it should be, but that's still inconvenient.  I'll make do.  I can handle keeping people moving, it's just that it is easier to do so if they are already well-coordinated.  ...If I never have to march a Chorus gang halfway across the province overnight again it will be too soon," she grumbles.  "I'd plan for maybe a fist's worth of people, given this information.  Five to ten, if they're comfortable in eachothers' personal space.  But please do consult your leadership.  Coordination is important."


A polite nod, and Dedicate Dove finds a slate to write a message on. A runner takes the slate, and goes to find Dedicate Moonstream, who is moving towards the Hub with several a group of other dedicates, including a half dozen mages. She will arrive shortly, but Ophelia will need to interrupt her if she wants to talk immediately. The runner moves back, and goes to fill Ophelia in.

"Moonstream is busy at the moment, but once she's done she'll arrange a group to head over to Summersea. It turns out a group of students were trapped underground, and she's helping to get them out. They're using the Hub to make it easier, so she'll be here soon."


She nods.  "I am at your and her disposal, should they be injured, but I've had little time to familiarize myself with Stone, despite some ...personal experience... with its only known Archon, so I do not expect that I will be able to usefully contribute to such a ritual.  Most of my expected utility in earthquake recovery is in the use of the Sigil of Force to move objects, and of course Life and Vigor for healing."


A wry smile. "Never too much of those."

The temple might look from above to be reminiscent of a knocked over ant-hill. The magical ritual in the hub is powerful, and moves stone and earth from around the city, deep underground, carefully avoiding the spells that keep the circle dry despite its depth and location.

She’ll be welcome healing injuries (mostly minor, a few broken limbs, but most everyone is stable at this point. The worst off are a young girl with a bad concussion, and an elderly man with a fractured hip).

After about a half hour, several initiates carry out four young teens, all unconscious, all badly bruised and magically exhausted, and one with welts across her hangs, looking like they were formed from some sort of wire.

Several mages follow, including Dedicate Moonstream, who takes a moment, completes a breathing exercise, and walks over to Ophelia. She beckons over a man, thin and dark-haired, who looks at Ophelia with magical sight beyond that of many masters. He’s looking for unmagic, and any traces of the teleportation effect, but will almost certainly see any magic that she isn’t hiding very well.


If she had known that that was what this man was looking for, she would have simply told him that she has a few magical items on her person - and her staff is obviously an amplifier - but she's never had the time to investigate working magic into herself before, and she doesn't sense any working upon her now that she hasn't cast since her arrival here.  (She vaguely suspects Lantry has, and wishes she could have stolen copied his notes.)

...Well.  Perhaps the Edicts.  Those, she's been told, leave scars.


She is keeping some of her buffs up constantly, Haste and Guidance in particular, to speed her movements and grant both herself and any other healers that are working greater precision, but most of her magic is going directly into patients, including the newest ones, rather than herself - and certainly none of it is 'un'.

There's a few items on her person that seem magewrought, though clearly through strange means - a selection of jewelry that carries minor blessings, including one still-living, heavily grafted plant covered in healing herbs; her symbols of office - her seal, and the scales Tunon gives to the ambitious hanging from a durable but somehow swift-looking silken sash (though in this matter they differ, slightly, from the normative pair that is described, should one look up their description: the balance itself is Justice, the anchor-point is Law, and what is weighed is CONSEQUENCE vs. MERCY) - a mantle of raven's feathers (gathered from willing birds) upon a cloak, woven of gossamer illusions, that help her blend into even the strangest environments.  Her staff, of course, is a strange object indeed - it amplifies her connection to various forms of elemental magic.


And then there's the weight of law and commitment wrapped around her soul like both armor and a comfortable cloak, the varicolored dyes of magic and ink that drip from her fingers/her quills, and the scent of libraries that drifts throughout her history; the acid-scarred wound in her heart, where it still weeps, impaled by a shard of grinding, quaking stone; and the executioner's sword that hangs (suspended by puppeted puppeteer's puppet strings that fold back upon themselves in a twisting, recursive snarl of plots, plans, and webs between the hands of Kyros and herself) above her head as a Spire looms in the distance, for all that that last element is entangled in a madman's maddening spray of strange Sigils that sear in a twisting rainbow of colors, echoing and anchoring to a location that cannot be here yet cannot be entered nor left, for the sword still wards from it like a barricade - but none of these last are things she's aware await.  Her legend is hardly solid, yet, though she is taking her first, unsteady steps upon its path.


...Concussions take a much heavier-duty-feeling spell (to the onlookers) than almost anything else she could find herself treating, but she will treat it, if that's necessary.  It's not like her area effect healing-spell has suddenly dissipated, anyway, (to her carefully maintained lack of surprise; of course her magic worked as she intended -) and that will actually do just as well, since it's the same spell.


A pale, dark haired man blinks a few times, the moves to shake her hand,

”Niklaren Goldeye. A pleasure to meet you, despite the circumstances.”


"Fatebinder Ophelia Vaudelle.  Likewise."  She shakes his hand firmly; she's not the sort to get into a pissing contest - pardon her language - over pleasantries, but she takes things seriously, including these things, and that means that she puts a certain amount of effort in, rather than mimicking a wet noodle or slacking on her weapon katas.  "Did you find what you were looking for?"  It takes barely a second before she's correcting herself.  "Or rather, no, I think you cleared me of something.  Though of what, I do not know.  I expect it's a rather insidious sort of threat, to merit surreptitious investigations like this, though that's rather confounded by..."  She gestures at the everything going on.  "Well.  I'd be suspicious too in your position, on general principle."


His handshake is firm, and taken seriously, but Niklaren’s forte is not in the physical, and Ophelia can likely notice that.

He widens his eyes at her response, but recovers quickly from the surprise.

“I’ve never heard of instantaneous transportation done by any means but unmagic. And, yes. It was unlikely by dint of your clear sanity, coherence, and casting magic, but someone else could have transported you by such a mean, and it would be much less immediately obvious.”

A grimace.

“Exposure to unmagic is more insidious than the effects to the caster, though the caster is no less effected. But yes. Though if someone had completely controllable teleportation and used it to…attempt to rob a temple in broad daylight or something, I can only say that that would be a true failure of both ambition and sense.”

Introductions complete, Niklaren moves over to one of the teenagers, who has been healed of the bruises but is still unconscious, and follows as she is brought into the infirmary.


"I'd never heard of it being a possible working of Sigils, and yet Nerat somehow accomplished it, so I daresay we're both rather surprised.  I'm certainly unsure as to how I ended up here; there were effects that simply should not have allowed me to leave the general vicinity.  Perhaps there's a way in which I haven't, somehow, but I don't feel that Edict in effect around us - and I'm certain I'd know if it was; it was hardly subtle once it had been delivered.  My teeth have finally stopped buzzing.

"Though as far as a failure of ambition and sense...That really does describe Nerat.  His ambition is the bloody Chorus, and you should probably take 'bloody' quite literally.  ...Well.  It's either that, or being a hoarder of forbidden lore; I'm not sure which he'd trade off first - but I'm fairly certain that the torture, mutilation, and bloodsport is what he does to enjoy himself.  He's a sick and twisted bastard that may have at one point been a man, and frankly I was looking forward to bringing justice for his victims.  At least once I figured out how, because there are some complications to the situation that I don't think you need to know save for never being alone with the man if, despite the impossibility, he turns up.  ...It would've been troublesome, but I do think I could have somehow managed it."


"...If you're wondering what gave you away as having been looking for something, by the way - you were too obviously surprised."


She's going to follow him into the infirmary; she has a few other things she can try, once they're not going to bash their heads open if they move suddenly.


When she does so, Moonstream tries to pull her aside.

"I can gather a group shortly, if you would like to set off with them. Dedicates Frostpine, Henna, Mapleseed, Comet, Rosethorn, and Yarrow, are those who are physically well and have volunteered. I can gather initiates shortly, and I suspect that you can leave within the hour."

She looks over to Niko.

"You likely can't help his student, and likely shouldn't if you could. It would teach bad habits, to take risks when the stakes are less then deadly. And might cause permanent damage."

She sighed. "And there is much higher priorities."


"If we have time, and it seems that we have at least this minute - I am nonetheless going to try.  Because 'they won't understand the consequences of their actions' is not a reason to not heal someone who might be in a coma, judging by how drained they feel, because I would swear an oath on a name that would kill me themself if I made my word false that no harm will come to them because of this healing, even should it not succeed, because they cannot learn if they are not awake and alive enough to understand what has come to pass, and because I can be consequences just as well.  Gather your people, but I sha'n't ignore a problem in front of me merely because I will face greater.  And...they're children.  Perhaps old enough to apprentice, but surely not a single one is yet qualified a master.  They deserve the care children are due."

She has many spells in mind for this, but there are few that could possibly take more than a minute to lay upon every still-exhausted student.  Of Life, of Preservation, of Vigor.  To heal what is yet unwell, on deeper levels than blood and bone.  To Preserve what is presently well from any future depredations.  To be a boon to Vitality, Resolve, and Might.  To hope that they awaken less haunted than she would be, by whatever has come to pass.

And then she is ready to move out, her robes fluttering dramatically as she hits marching stride.


She grimaces at the word coma, and frowns at the rest, but nods in acquiescence.

”You make a fair point. Their ordeal has been extreme already.”


Niko offers a tired smile.

”I heard some of the argument. They will be fine, in time, but I’m sure none will complain if you can save them a week of exhaustion.”


"It is," she says, already moving through the group, "the least I can do.  They've been through enough."

And then, she is ready to lead the relief party.


A black man, heavily muscled and balding at the top of his head, waves at her and moves to shake her hand. 

”I’m Frostpine. This is one of my apprentices, Kirel.” A white skinned man in white robes, standing at about six and a half feet, waves when her is introduced.”

“I heard that you can speed up travel, for yourself and a small group?” He begins to walk towards a cluster of about 5 people, all in the colored robes of a Dedicate, several glowing with magical power, including Frostpine himself.

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