Sep 24, 2020 1:37 AM
Isansia in PMMM
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Nod. That's reasonable. I think. What else would there be to use it on, by the way? You mentioned uses other than fighting witches, and I assume the telepathy is one of those things. Is there anything else?

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Different magical girls have different specialties depending on what they wish for, but all of them can do telekinesis, and healing, and transmutation, and other little tricks that they find all kinds of uses for!

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Wait, am I supposed to wish for magic? I thought you said I could wish for anything I wanted. Or is it that I get those things regardless of whether I wish for magic, but other specialties only if I wish for them?

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You can wish for anything you want, and will get magic regardless. You will get slightly different magic depending on what it is, even if it is not for magic at all.

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Ah. Okay. She spends a moment thinking. So I'd get magic plus a wish in exchange for fighting witches. How dangerous are the witches? Like, without knowing what abilities I'll have exactly it's probably hard to know, but... wait, you mentioned different magical girls. So that makes it easier. How long do typical magical girls go without getting seriously injured? Seriously injured by standards that take into account healing magic being a thing, at least.

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It's impossible to damage a magical girl's body so much that she can't recover if she has enough magic left!

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Oh. Wow. So we can't be killed either? Or is it less that we can't be killed and more that killing us involves giving us enough injuries that we run out of magic before we can heal everything? How scarce is magic, I guess? I remember you said that I'd need to fight more witches if I wanted to use more magic. Is that the sort of thing I can go into debt on? If I'm missing a leg or something and don't have enough magic to grow it back, can I borrow extra magic from you and then make up for it with extra witches fought later, or would I just be stuck with one leg until after fighting enough witches to be able to heal it?

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You can't go into magical debt. When you kill a witch, you get a way to restore your magic capacity, but it runs out after a few uses. Magical girls can be killed but it takes much more than killing a human would.

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Okay. So avoid getting excessively damaged to the point where I don't have enough magic to fix everything. Got it. How often does that happen to magical girls, then?

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Magical capacity varies a lot. Sometimes girls don't manage what they have well, but on a full capacity any one could restore herself from no body at all.

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Shania shakes her head. That's not what I'm worried about. I'm worried about getting hurt or killed fighting witches, which... okay, so magical girls always fight witches, right? Because that's your contract and it's how we get magic? And unless the witches massively outnumber us, the remaining living ones are going to have learned some things about how to fight back. So they'll know to keep hitting us while we try to regenerate, rather than just doing a bunch of damage and then leaving. At least if they're fighting to kill. Do they not try to kill us when we fight them?

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Witches don't really learn from experience. They do try to kill, but they're not very smart. Fights take place inside a witch's barrier, so the magical girl would have to be the one to leave if she wanted to end the fight.

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Okay. So given those limits, then, the rate of witches managing to seriously hurt or kill one of us before we manage to run away? Or are you trying to imply that that literally never happens?

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It sometimes happens. I'm not always there when a magical girl disappears, though.

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Sure. But your best estimate? I'm trying to figure out how much taking your contract is going to mess with my life expectancy, here. Like, I understand that you don't have perfect data, I understand that it varies a lot from girl to girl depending on how competent we are, but you're being really vague even given that. Like, should I expect not to live to age twenty if I take your contract? Or is it more like only a small fraction of magical girls get killed by witches, and the rest do all the magic-management stuff you keep emphasizing and come out fine?

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Some magical girls live much longer than normal humans! Magic can stop you from aging. Being killed by a witch is not the thing that is most likely to kill a magical girl.

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Okay. Great. So I'm just going to assume that most magical girls die young, then, because you're being way too evasive about this. What's the most common thing to kill magical girls, if not witches?

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Mismanaging their magic.

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Is that a separate cause of death from witches? What else is out there that can kill us when our magic levels are too low? Or, wait, are you saying that we die directly from running out of magic, even without external dangers?

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Yes.

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Okay then. Any other causes of death that are disproportionately likely among magical girls, or is it just those two?

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Deaths resulting from violence or magic loss are it.

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Okay then. Do you have a way to tell in advance how much magic capacity I'm going to have?

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Not precisely, but it has to do with how strongly you feel about your wish.

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In which direction?

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