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Dec 08, 2019 3:49 PM
a fruit elf on the Howling Mountain
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Curses could do all kinds of weird things.

This was something Elodea had become very familiar with over the course of her long life. The ones that just hurt you she could safely ignore, but it wasn't always possible to be sure that it was that and not something that would be inconvenient even to an immortal. So she was very careful of magical traps. And other casters, when she fought them.

It hadn't occurred to her to worry about one getting caught by her curse. It wasn't that it never happened, although it was relatively rare; she avoided fighting them when she could and therefore ones eligible for the curse to snag didn't happen to be in its range very often. But when they did get snagged, they tended to use relatively ordinary spells, like "web" or "fireball."

Why the fuck the curse had let the asshole cast plane shift was a mystery up there with why he would want to while under the effects of the curse, neither of which she had any particular avenue of solving.

She hits the floor of her new location with a thud, and lets herself lie there cursing everyone responsible for her situation for a few seconds before sitting up and looking around.

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Directly in front of her is an expanse of green grass artfully dotted with colourful flowers and sloping upward toward an enormous, elaborate, stunningly beautiful palace, the sky behind it glowing with the fading colours of a recently concluded sunset. To her right, the steeper upward slope of a mountainside. To her left, a calm lake, and the unnervingly intense wary stare of a girl in a white dress crouching by the lakeshore. The hems of the dress trail in the water, but it is otherwise pristine, not so much as a speck of sand.

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--Okay.

Given the curse that stare...probably doesn't mean anything good, but that at least appears to be a woman, so it at least probably doesn't directly mean the obvious not-good thing.

Sigh.

She has no idea what plane she's on--most of the ones she knows of don't have humans, and the woman does appear to be human although she could easily be something else, polymorphed. She might as well try the languages she knows before wasting her Comprehend Languages.

"Hello, I'm very lost," she says in trade jargon.

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She shakes her head and says something in a completely unfamiliar language.

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Not really surprising. She repeats herself in Celestial, Infernal, Auran, Yretani, Kladzek, Rrrn'thal, Lissamere, and Saljez, although she doesn't especially expect any of them to work.

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The woman in the white dress shakes her head once per language, looking increasingly nervous and tense as the list goes on.

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Yeah okay.

"Comprehend Languages," she incants in Yretani. Not very creative but whatever.

"Hello, I'm very lost," she says in the language the woman spoke to her with.

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"- what are you - doing - how - never mind that," she says, shaking her head. "Leave. Now. Get off this mountain as fast as you can."

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She's been in more than enough combat situations to not question it when someone says something like that in that tone of voice.

She tries to teleport.

It fizzles with the unpleasant mental sensation of spell failure.

She grits her teeth at her head's throbbing--that should not have failed, which means--

"I don't think I can. Why should I?"

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"Jump off a cliff if you have to, it'll be better than what happens if he finds you."

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She sighs.

"Unfortunately, I expect that if jumping off a cliff would work I would fail to do it if I tried. I'm under a curse."

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" - what do you mean, a curse -"

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"When I was young and stupid I said yes to a god and he subsequently took it badly when I tried to say no and now I can say no as much as I like and it's never going to matter. I have a sort of--quota. Even if I should be able to--fight them off, or get away, it doesn't work."

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"- have you also tried killing yourself, because that would be my next suggestion."

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"I tried that with the god when saying no didn't work and now I'm immortal."

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"...You really need to get off this mountain."

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"What is it about this guy that's got you so freaked out?"

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"He's an all-powerful sorcerer who kidnaps people and takes them to his mountain and tortures them until the magic he uses to keep them from dying on him makes their minds stop working."

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"...Lovely."

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"It takes a hundred and fifty years. I've been here for three. If you have forever - doesn't matter if you don't think it'll work, jump off a cliff anyway, you'd be better off anywhere else -"

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"How powerful is 'all-powerful'? I'm a seventeenth-tier wizard..."

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"I don't know what that means."

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"You have sorcerers here but not wizards?"

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"- 'sorcerer' just means 'person who does a lot of magic', 'wizard' means the same thing but it's an older word, and they're neither of them very precise because most people - aren't one, couldn't be - the way you get more magic than the tiny bit everyone has is by torturing people and he's nearly the only one who even knows how..."

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"...Okay! I promise I didn't torture anyone to progress beyond cantrips. That is not how the magic I'm familiar with works. ...Why do you not have a word for cantrips."

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"I don't know, what's a cantrip."

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