[IRP] Visitor from the Vale

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Raef
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Re: [IRP] Visitor from the Vale

Post by Raef »

The void. His body, unable to move but healed, his mind detached but his soul transcending to another place. Raef knew these things in a moment and would have frowned if he had eyebrows. Was he in the Veil? Impossible, for he was no dream walker. His magical senses could only span a measly 10 meters. How long he floated in the darkness, he did not know but suddenly he felt a sharp pain then peace as light shone on him...he was in his core...the heart of his power. He could feel it now. Usually he spent hours meditating to get to this space but his being had changes slightly. There was...another energy mixed with his core now...what was it? it was not of this realm or the Vales....but pure...light...

The orb used to float in his sea of power, visualized as an actual sea. Most Mages had large lakes until they could condense their sea to be more solid form of power. Where he used to have a vast cavern with a rolling sea below a massive glowing ball of gold, blue and white power, he now had a small cavern, with a dense lake and in the center was a golden statue of a women, with raised arms holding his core which was the size of a large ball, but felt more intimidating, more dense, more concentrated. Whisps of white, pure light danced around his core, sometimes fusing with it to leave ghostly mist trails of translucent power before coming out the other side whole again.

He has become stronger? With a frown he concentrates and moves his subconsciousness back to his body.

Eyes, that now had a silver light radiating from them looked up at the stars, blinked and sat up, letting his magic sense wash over the area. He immediately looks down to his left to find his Princess sleeping next to him and feels Iris' aura, even through the wards. Odd. Stranger still, he felt a thin line of the same power that circles his core, connecting his soul to Nikolai's. What had happened?

His fingers brushed a strand of blonde hair from her sleeping face and began to meditate while keeping his sense, which were sharper, active.
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Nikola
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Re: [IRP] Visitor from the Vale

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Nikola slept the deep, dreamless sleep of exhaustion. Dreams did not come during these times as every ounce of mental and physical energy was being used to replenish her store of power, and to refuel her ability to wield it. She knew nothing until those reserves were filled enough that simple rest and food could accomplish the rest. It was at this point that her mind began to wonder in a dream in which she remembered how, with Vaelen’s assistance, she had stopped the destructive disruptions in the elf’s core. In her dream, she wandered weightlessly through his core, marveling at the wells of power that were stored there. She watched, fascinated, as the tendrils of her power, pure light, had touched and restored the damaged places. She was fascinated by what she saw, partly because she was inside the body of another creature and could see how all the parts worked together, and partly because she knew that what she saw was the power and magic of this creature. Whether the uniqueness was his alone, or something he shared with elf kind she could not say.

As wakefulness began to bring the dream to a close, Nikola floated, or perhaps she swam, to the surface where she found her own body and mind. Yet something remained behind of her power. A single ribbon of power that still bound them together. She wondered about this and as she woke, her eyes remained closed as she prepared to test the bond, wondering if it was like the one she shared with Vaelen. Her grandfather had seemed surprised when it had happened to them, so she was fairly certain it was not a normal occurrence among his kin but had something to do with her power. She did not understand it, but she did recognize it and if felt much the same, yet somehow different.

She could feel light on her face, filtering down through the canopy of the old oak tree under which she lay. She sensed a presence near her and knew it was not Iris, for the presence was not familiar, and yet she knew it. Her eyes fluttered open to find Raef sitting beside her. He seemed to be in a meditative state. Good, she thought. Without moving, as she did not want to alert him just yet to the fact that she was awake, she sent an image of herself and Raef with a ribbon of light connecting them to each other’s core and watched for a reaction. The image was sent as a question without words. That was how it worked with Vaelen, and she wanted to know if this was the same or different somehow. The bond between herself and Vaelen had formed when he had melded their minds together and sent his memories of her family and its history into her mind. Her power had somehow attached itself to that connection and the bond was still as strong as it had been the day it was formed. Would this one be the same? Or would it be different due to the circumstances under which it had been forged?
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Raef
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Re: [IRP] Visitor from the Vale

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The Lord of the Vale let his senses roam far and wide. Before he could sense anything in a radius of 1000 miles but now he could sense almost 10 times that. He focused a very obscure use of magic on a small mountain in Bravia and shot a remote complex spell through his sense at its core. It rumbled and imploded, rock turning into fine stone dust. Raef felt only slightly light headed but otherwise full of energy. He may even be as powerful as his liege, King Vaelen. He quickly wiped that treasonous thought out his head as he felt a tug on his mind.

He opened his eyes to see Nikola mounting her steed and his eyes could not help but trace to the fine contours of her shapely posterior. The tip of his ears heated as he thought that she had really grown into a stunning woman.

More surprises was he when she turned towards him and he realized he could read her...oh no...he thought then winced.
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Re: [IRP] Visitor from the Vale

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Perhaps the bond did not work like the one she shared with Vaelen, for Raef did not move, seemingly concentrating on something internally. She rose quietly and joined Iris in getting the horses ready to leave, eating the bread and cheese that was left from the evening before and washing it down with more of the spiced wine. She assured Iris that she was recovered, at least enough to ride back to the castle, if not enough to use her power to any extent. Once Starr and Betsy, the horse assigned to Iris, were ready, Nikola got Raef's horse ready for him as he had not moved from where he was when she had first awakened. As she was heading back to Starr, an odd vision dropped into her mind of a flash of magic on top of a small mountain, followed by solid rock transforming to dust. She hesitated, wondering where that thought had come from, but thought little of it as she placed her foot in the stirrup and started to pull herself up into the saddle. She had the uncomfortable sense of being watched and an image of her backside flashed across her mind along with a thought that was not her own.

She froze in the act of tossing her right leg over the saddle. Momentum gone, she quickly found herself with her right foot back on the ground. Yanking her left foot out of the stirrup she whirled around to see Raef staring at her, his eyes going wide and the tips of his ears turning red. Surprise, embarrassment, curiosity, and anger all jumbled up inside her as she stared at him, too confused to think clearly for several heartbeats.
"Did you just...?" she started and felt her cheeks go warm at the memory of the thought accompanying the image of her backside as she started to mount her horse. "And just now, you knew...." she started to ask whether he knew she had heard his thought, but cut herself off before she said any more words out loud. She could sense the same surprise, embarrassment and curiosity coming from him, although there did not seem to be any anger. She realized she was not even sure why she was angry, or whether she was angry at him or the situation they now found themselves in. Taking a deep breath, she dropped Starr's reins and walked slowly back to stand in front of Raef, keeping her eyes on his without wavering. "Are you as aware of me as I am of you right now?" she asked, searching his eyes for any hint of avoidance. Elves did not lie, but that did not mean they were not adept at skipping over the parts of the truth that did not best serve them.

She followed the question with another, but the second question was sent to him mind to mind as a test to see whether he could read her mind as clearly as she seemed to be reading his. She sent the image of her backside along with the thought she had heard and then mentally slapped him without moving a muscle. Then she waited to see whether and how he might react.
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Re: [IRP] Visitor from the Vale

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Fascinating, he thought with wonder, surprised at the turn of events but not a little mortified. He rose from his lotus meditation position and was about to go to her when Nikola asked him the question he has pondered himself, but knowing the answer.

"Yes, we seem to have gone through a bi-directional echo congruence metamorphosis with our souls, but more so than I have ever know two creatures to do...you see...ow!", he said in an excited logic explanation that stopped abruptly when a vision imprinted and...and a mental slap! As he winched again, his eyes grew wide and excited with a healthy dose of fear. Not the kind of fear for ones life, but the kind where you realized someone was about to see all your deepest, darkest secrets and you couldn't do a thing about it.

He intended to rush to her side but magic subconsciously wrapped around him, folding him into space and he "blinked" a few steps forward, popping out of thin air. He frowned but he would unpack how he just did a complex, dangerous spell without any prep work, naturally and took her warm hands in his, forgetting all protocol in his excitement.

"Princess! Do you know what this means? In each creature, there is the body, the soul and the mind which is connected by energy paths called meridians, not so dissimilar to veins in our body. Most normals only have access to a strong body due to their meridians being thin and blocked naturally. You and I are Magi and we seemed to have bonded on a soul level. Much like you and your Grandfather, King Vaelen have...but furthermore...which is the astonishing part...we seem to have bonded our minds also and perhaps please excuse me...", he explained quickly and gave her an apologetic look at the end then moved in to kiss her on the lips more hungrily than he intended for he was excited for the experiment, before stepping back, excitedly waiting for the inevitable slap while watching her reaction intently with all his senses.

If he was right, he she would feel the slap she would give him but it was very possible, he could be wrong. Full integration ascendance merging had never been heard of in the history of the seven realms. In his focus, he failed to realize the extra tingly sensation on his lips and the odd emotions swirling inside of him.
Last edited by Raef on Fri Aug 05, 2022 3:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: [IRP] Visitor from the Vale

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She stared at him open-mouthed, only understanding a few of the words he was saying at her, and it did feel as if he was talking AT her rather than TO or even WITH her. “A bi-echo what?” she asked lamely after it was clear he had indeed felt her mental slap. Then he started towards her, and she wondered whether she had blinked as he seemed to reach her far sooner than he should have. He took her hands in his and she was too surprised to be alarmed, trying to process what had happened, what was still happening, and what it all meant, all at the same time as she was trying to keep up with what he was saying to her, although most of his words went right over her head.

She was about to ask him to slow down when she heard him say
“….please excuse me…” and then leaned in to kiss her full on the mouth. Her eyes went wide in shock, and she took a step back, yanking her hands free of his and looked at him in astonishment, noting with horror the excitement and anticipation in his eyes. How dare you do such a thing? she thought at him and sent another mental slap followed by a physical one. He seemed to expect the first but was surprised by the second. Good, she thought ruefully.

“I don’t know what you thought you were doing, but I am not a subject in an experiment, nor am I agreeable to such displays!” She told him aloud, trying to keep her voice firm but calm. The whole situation had her mind reeling and she wished she could get him out of her head. “I have only just learned your true identity, which I don’t understand why you thought it necessary to hide such from me in the first place. We will discuss that later… No, you will listen to me, and you will be silent until I am done!” she told him, cutting off his attempt to interrupt. ”And stay out of my head!” she added irritably and gave him a stern look.

“I do not understand why you are here, what happened to you that caused the damage I saw inside you, or why we are connected now, but we are both going to have to figure this out and find a way to mute this link if we cannot break it. I do not want you in my head any more than you want me in yours!” He looked like he wanted to speak, and she cut him off again, raising her right hand with her forefinger pointed skyward in warning. “Ah-ah, I didn’t say you could speak yet,” she said, her eyes flashing. “I do not know how things are done in Vaelen’s realm, but I certainly never witnessed anything like this there and I will warn you only once. DO NOT touch me or try anything like that again without my permission! Are we clear?”

Sapphire eyes bored into him with the intensity of fear and rage, and she held his gaze until he responded. “There is also the issue of the sabotaged portal. We will need to work on this end of it to determine whether the other portals have been similarly sabotaged before Vaelen or anyone else tries to travel them. I do not want anyone else to risk the kind of damage that befell you. So whatever this is,” she waved a hand between herself and Raef, “has to be sorted out quickly, and without any more surprises from you. Are we agreed?” She looked at him, then sighed. “You are free to speak now, but please use smaller human words that I can understand. My mind is too mixed up right now to process anything more,” she said as she rubbed her temples, feeling the beginnings of a headache forming behind her eyes.
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Re: [IRP] Visitor from the Vale

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Iris nodded to Lord Raef when he sat up, but he did not seem to notice her. She was used to not being noticed unless she wanted to be so she took no offence. He settled into a meditative state, and she went about her morning, preparing a breakfast of cheese and bread for when Lord Raef and her Lady were both awake and ready to meet the day. She had no idea of what Nikola had done for him, but whatever it had been seemed to have revived him well enough. She hoped that he appreciated the sacrifice her Lady had made for him. She knew that Nikola’s magic was powerful, but she also knew the toll it could take on her when she used too much of it for too long and she had spent a long time healing the elf.

Eventually Nikola stirred, rose, and quietly joined Iris who provided her Lady with a meager meal of bread and cheese and more of the spiced wine. She set aside some from Raef as well, then joined Nikola in getting the horses saddled and ready to go. Everything seemed to be going along smoothly until suddenly they weren’t.

Iris looked from Nikola’s surprised face to Raef, who seemed equally surprised and even excited. Nothing seemed to make sense to Iris. It was as though they were talking to each other without actually saying much of anything at all until he kissed her. Iris’ eyes went wide and instinctively looked around for TK, who, of course, did not make a sudden appearance. Nikola’s reaction, however, surprised even Iris who had never seen her mistress react so vehemently to anyone before, at least not where Iris could see it. She could sense a myriad of emotions radiating out of Nikola – fear, uncertainty, confusion, interest, anger, curiosity, embarrassment.

All Iris could do was look from one to the other of them and back again with her mouth open. She finally began to put the pieces of the puzzle together during Nikola’s outburst aimed at Raef. She nearly felt sorry for him. She was certain he was not accustomed to being scolded so by anyone, much less the object of his affection. Wait. Did he…? Iris stared at Raef in disbelief. Surely, she was mistaken! She looked back at Nikola and the lass merely looked tired and frustrated. Perhaps she was wrong, then, and had just imagined what she thought she had sensed in the elf.

There was an awkward tenseness that seemed to fill the space within her wards. Nikola seemed blissfully unaware, or perhaps she had dismissed it as anything out of the ordinary when so many other emotions were whirling around inside her. Iris picked up the bread and cheese and took them over to Raef, hoping to break a little of the tension. “You should probably eat, Lord Vael’darion. It isn’t much, but it’s what we have along with some apples. We need to get the both of you back to the castle. My Lady needs more rest, and more food than we have here,” she explained, hoping he would understand.
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Re: [IRP] Visitor from the Vale

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He felt lightheaded being scolded and feeling...so...much at the same time. Although her words rang true, he felt the underlying emotions and her jumbled thoughts on the matter and all Raef could do was bow formally to hide a slight tug at the corner of his lips before straightening.

"It will be as you command, my Princess.", he said in his most courtly voice while mentally he began building "rooms" to store the memories and emotions he did not want to yet be discovered. It was not hard for him as he had millennium to master the control of his mental faculties though he was surprised that even these fail-safes seemed to only fuzz the memories or emotions and not block them entirely as it should. Interesting. He would of course, not experiment anymore for he was likely to get mentally stunned again and beat with a shoe or some such.

Then the one that called herself Iris approached with food, "Thank you, Protector.", he said in the language of his people before taking sustenance.

"So....do I suppose I failed in the job application hmm?", he chuckled, mirth filling him and he projected an image of her surprised then scolding face at Nikola.

"But "Iris" is correct; you need rest.", and then his thoughts unconsciously went to her in bed, resting and how angelic she looked then blinked with embarrassment as he realized she would have just seen what was on his mind. Act like nothing happened; act like nothing happened, he chanted as he plucked at the nodes and fed the portal spell that sprung into life, a blue, white and gold sparking circle swirled into life, enough for two beast abreast. The image on the other side of the portal was the inside of Nikola's stables. This spell was safe for it was not punching a whole between realm but more like folding the current reality on itself, punching a small hole and stepping through to let is bounce back and heal in a moment.

"We need to talk when you are rested. About your powers and what has happened here today but in the mean time...shall we ladies?", he said and bowed to Nikola then gestured for both of them to step through, marveling at how easy the spell had been and how fast. Something had definitely changed he thought as he multi cast a glamour on himself to resemble the human Raef.
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Re: [IRP] Visitor from the Vale

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“Thank you, Raef,” Nikola said simply in response to his formal intention to comply with her request. So much was buzzing around in her head that she did not think to use his honorific, although when that thought did occur to her later, she decided that it was probably best since he was glamoured as a human anyway. She busied herself calming Starr after her outburst at Raef, feeling a little guilty for having been so hard on him, but what she’d said had needed to be said. She could still sense waves of memories and thoughts coming from him, although none were quite as clear as before, and most were images rather than words which was helpful, albeit a little dizzying.

She had calmed down enough to smile as his attempt at humor, supposing he had failed at the job application, then chuckled outright as she saw her own face looking surprised and then scolding him. She blushed a little at how vehement she had been, trying not to think about it as she turned her face away to hopefully keep him from seeing her reaction. She had only been this stern with one other, and he had been an enemy of her people. Raef was no enemy, of that much she was certain.

Before she was able to respond, however, she felt his use of power and instinctively turned in the direction of the portal he had opened to see what he had done. At first, she was confused, but then she recognized Starr’s stall inside the stables at the castle, daylight streaming in through the open doors and setting the straw and hay alight with brown and golden hues. She had planned to mount Starr once they were all ready, but the portal was not quite high enough for a mounted rider, although it did seem wide enough for two horses to pass through together. The horses were not quite sure what to make of the portal and shied away from it, but Nikola was able to calm Starr first and led her through the portal. The other two nervously followed Starr, hesitant at first then rushing through so that they nearly ran into her. Once inside the stables, they visibly relaxed, shaking their maines as if to rid themselves of the memory.

Ben walked in just after Raef closed the portal and stopped short, looking startled and confused.
“I did not see you arrive, my Lady,” he apologized and reached for Starr’s reins. “You wouldn’t have, Ben. It’s OK. I will try to explain later. If you don’t mind taking care of the horses?” He nodded, gave a little bow and reached for Betsy’s reins as well. She smiled at the young man and nodded her thanks to him. At Firestorm Manor, there was no bowing of the staff as they were more like family there, but here at Castle Fenshire, things were somewhat more formal and would be at least until she was certain of her staff.

She turned to Iris who was watching her carefully, likely on alert for any sign of weariness.
“Iris, please have the kitchens prepare a quick meal and tell Bianca to prepare a room for Raef,” she instructed, and her eyes swept to Raef to address him as Iris hurried to the castle ahead of them. “I need a proper meal and more rest before my strength is completely regenerated. Healing you took a lot more of my power than I have needed to use in a long time. You are welcome to join me for the meal if you wish,” she said and began walking out of the stables back toward the castle. It was not a large castle, like the Fenian complex where the High King lived and held court, but it was larger than her home estate and would serve the county of Fenshire well enough. She adjusted her stride to walk beside Raef. “If you are agreeable, I would like for you to remain here at the castle with us at least until we can sort out what to do about…our circumstance…and the rest of the issue. Once I feel stronger, I would like to meet with you again, and see what we can do. Is that acceptable to you?”
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Re: [IRP] Visitor from the Vale

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Raef watched his Princess command the people around him and he smiled ruefully. She had grown into a fine lady and leader he mused, quietly admiring her.

He began to walk beside her with confident purposeful strides. No longer feeling the need to play the part of a servant, even though he still looked human thanks to the glamor.

"Thank you for the offer, Princess, but I think I shall retire to my room and meditate on the changes that have happened to us and see if we can...find a way to have some boundaries within our minds.", he explained, as his mind subconsciously pulled a memory of hers resting in a bathtub once upon a time. He shook his head and focused. He wondered if she could access his memories also. So fascinating, he thought.

Magic was one of his great obsessions. It was why he became a mage.

"I shall follow this Bianca. Rest well.", he said and bowed his head to her and nodded at "Iris" before following the servant tonhis room.

Some time later, after he had eaten in his room and bathed, Raef sat on a mat on the floor in the lotus position, with nothing but cotton shorts toncover his modesty. His body was athletic and his muscles tone. He was elite warrior but he had kept up a physical training regiment for centuries, making his body a living weapon. At this moment his mind was focused internally, analyzing the changes to his physical being and his spiritual.

It was unmistakable. They had linked their souls somehow. There were forbidden high spells that had similar effects but nothing like this. There was other energy involved which he puzzled to great extent. Celestial? He dismissed that theory. Improbably. She was of his leige decent.

Unable to come up with a satisfactory answer, he moved his attention to forming a mental house in the node between their minds. It was the space that connected them in their souls. The mental image was "land" and was white, a blank canvas.

He contructed a simple house and opened the door. Inside he pushed all his memories, emotions and thoughts. That done, he contructed mental rooms with gold doors and pushed thought, memories he didn't want tonshare into those rooms and "locked" them.

Now she should only be able to read what was in the house but not in those rooms unless he chose. He would teach her this method for herself.

Opening his eyes he got up and began to dress, his mind going back to her and a flitter of emotion crossed the link before he could catch it. She was breathtakingly beautiful, he thought as he left the room to go seek her out.

"I hope this goes well.", he said to no-one.
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