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 Fantasy Guarded Waters - Alchemy | Hekazu

Discussion in 'Roleplay Execution' started by Alchemy, Sep 18, 2019.

  1. Alchemy

    Alchemy Must be the season of the witch... Administrator

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    When Cassandra's letter reached her, Lilia's life was in a place of transition. She had learned all she could from the Windrow coven, so she could either move on and seek more teachers, or she could settle into a peaceful life making trinkets and clothing for the elite of the city. She was strongly considering the latter, until she read the letter. Her parents had passed a few years ago, of a natural illness that no witch had a remedy for, so it made the choice quite easy. Lilia packed up some of her things and paid for a coach to take her back to the countryside, where she had grown up.

    The coachman had driven her and two other women through the night, and she found herself falling asleep despite the somewhat rocky ride. By the time they reached the small town of Durnsmere, the sun had started to rise, illuminating the area around her. Durnsmere was not a true town, it was more like several farms and homesteads spread out over many miles, but it was easy enough for the coachman to drop her off near the center of things. He seemed almost hesitant to leave her there, Lilia no longer looked like she belonged in Durnsmere. She remembered how people dressed here, in the kind of clothing that showed they intended to do a hard day's work, nothing like the fine brocade dress she now wore.

    Lilia simply paid him what she owed him for the ride and sent him off with her gratitude and a large smile.

    The dirt path she walked wound through trees for a bit, until the sky opened. The lake behind Cassandra's house looked still and peaceful, Lilia already found herself filled with nostalgia for the childhood she had spent here.

    In her mind's eye, she still pictured Simon as just an odd-looking little boy, so it was hard for her to imagine Cassandra really needed her help with him. They were both much older now, of course, and she was surprised the young man had not broken out on his own as she had. Her parents had left their farm to her, but after they died, she had sold the property. Lilia was not a farmer, she felt quite at home as a witch who dwelled in the city.

    Her feet brought her closer to the lake, rather than to the house, which should have been her destination. The sun had not yet cleared the canopy of trees that surrounded the water, so the shimmer of the lake's surface was still rather dull. Lilia held her suitcase in front of her and took a deep breath of the morning air, crisp and humid as it was. That was when something in the water caught her eye, though it was still distant, she could see movement just beneath the surface. It was not the even rhythm of a human swimming, where legs and arms alternated to propel the person through the waves...It was something else. Suddenly, all those old memories of Simon being just a normal child like her with a few odd quirks faded, Lilia knew exactly why she had been brought here.

    He truly did need her help.

    @Hekazu
     
  2. Hekazu

    Hekazu Menagerie Warden Member

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    Simon enjoyed the early mornings. Them and late evenings, with a healthy interest in the darker hours of the night. Yet above all, he lived for water. It was the element he thrived in, what he lived and breathed for. And in general, was just as capable of breathing if he found himself in such a pinch. Adaptability was the name of the game for the strange one, but no matter how hard he try he could not fit into human society. He stuck out like a sore thumb, more than a spotless evening gown in a barn. He'd never wholly understood mankind either, and he was told that they wouldn't come to understand him. Cassandra had been smart enough to set that small factoid straight despite having to tell it to something that had back then been the closest Simon ever had been to a normal human child. But truly, when one took on as a child a strange creation of alchemy, one that made fun of all that was natural in its oddities, one had to be ready to make such decisions.

    It had all started from when Cassandra's husband had made that strange purchase. Soon after he was found dead, blood smeared all over the egg that poor Harris had still been clutching in his hands. The Raingroves had never been a family much for revenge, and so all that came of it was that the last words of Cassandra's now late husband's had been honoured. He had wanted to know what exactly these strange "Well Wardens" were. And that was how Simon had come to be. There had to have been something in that blood that awakened him from his slumber in the shell, for he'd always resembled his deceased 'father'. But that could have been a coincidence just as well. It was difficult to tell at times.

    What could be said easily about him was that he was no human, yet there were many similarities. Two arms with hands in the usual configuration, a face built like a man's with perhaps a little larger a pair of eyes and very diminutive outer ears, the usual kind of torso if a bit on the strange side in its beep blue and chalk white colouration... he had hair, to be sure, hair that seemed to always be damp if not drenched, and then came the little things about his lower body. Like how in water he had good number of tentacles to propel him onward, yet when he rose on land they would soon converge into a pair of legs. Simon did avoid making that alteration in anyone's view though, usually. He found it somewhat embarrassing.

    As he'd grown, people had begun noticing some weird things. Sure, it was one thing when one's child told them they'd seen another kid in the water that was a little strange coloured, since children saw things. Especially when they'd heard first about this strange kid from another child. But when something man sized was breaking free of fishing nets, that's when the rumours start to circulate. Yet it wasn't as if Simon could have gone cold turkey on swimming. It was his element. Water was what he lived for, what his body yearned to soak in. Everything was so dry and bright on land. In the dew of the early morning, the land above surface was full of wonder however. And today, an old friend would arrive at the very same hour. The hour of pleasant miracles.

    Simon had been out for a swim this night, as he had been on so many others just as well. And once again he was out later than he had planned. He was already on his way back to the shore too, when he noticed something was off. There was somebody there. The ripples vanished from the surface as the freed well warden dove deeper into the lake, releasing behind him a small cloud of ink to make sure he wouldn't be followed by gaze alone. He didn't have much of it, so what followed next would have to be slow and careful. He crept towards the bank, or rather a lush reed growth behind a larger rock. Who was this person? The manner of dress wasn't familiar to him.

    Yet it didn't take more than his forehead and eyes poking out from amid the reeds and a squint in the new arrival's general direction to identify her. Lilia! It had been so long! She'd grown to be a woman too, no longer a child like they had been when they last saw one another. What could have brought her here, Simon pondered while he slipped back under the surface and glided into the shadow of the jutting rock. His tentacles coiled into the muddy bank, and soon he sprang forth from the serene waters with a splash that would only just not reach the other person at the scene. A series of wet slaps sounded from Simon landing down on the tilted surface, his bottom away from view as he leaned over the edge at the top of the rock, setting his hands on the tilted surface on the other side. He was wearing no clothes, so this sort of censorship had to do while he dried.

    "Lilia! It's you!" he called out with his oddly normal voice, the amphibian nature not affecting his vocal chords in the slightest. He was as cheery and bubbly as ever, never having outgrown such behaviour. The tentacles that had spilled over to the visible side of the rock detached their suckers from the uneven surface and coiled behind him, where they begun their adaptation into more ordinary legs. Sun reflected from the bright white of Simon's damp chest, his large eyes remaining squinted as Lilia stood in the direction the light of the sun was coming from. "It's been so long!" he finally added, but would have to drop his voice after that. Water was excellent in carrying voice after all. And what men lived on this side of the lake, hmm? Nobody, officially. "Mother did say that she sent a letter to you. Never told me what it was about, but I have my suspicions. Haven't you gone to the house yet? I can carry your luggage if I dry off enough to get dressed before you go. My clothes are under that rock there if you'd be so helpful", he go her up to speed, pointing at a pair of stones set on top of each other. "I wouldn't want the first thing you see here be, well. Inappropriate." It might all have been fine when they'd been kids, but those times were long gone.

    @Alchemy
     
  3. Alchemy

    Alchemy Must be the season of the witch... Administrator

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    Her eyes widened as he approached, but she tried to settle her expression as he got nearer. His features seemed more prominent now, though he still did seem to resemble the man her parents had called his father. He had grown into a handsome man, though, despite the oddities. And it was not as if Lilia lived in a world where strange things did not occur frequently. The humans around here would struggle to handle the way he looked, but to her, she was able to keep her surprise at bay and take it in stride. He had always been a stark contrast to her, the energetic friend while she remained quiet and often less adventurous. She averted her eyes as he got closer, but she did not hide the smile upon her lips. It was comforting to see an old friend.

    "I just arrived, I was taking in the morning air and then...Well..." She gestured toward the water. As he mentioned his clothes, she did her best to look for them without looking directly at him. The purpose was two-fold, she was meant to be modest and she also did not want it to seem like she was staring. It would have been easy to do, given how long they had been apart and how much her mind had dulled the memories of his appearance. She found the clothing and set down her suitcase, gathering it up and edging slowly closer to where he was, holding the garments out for him to take. I

    t was not surprising that Cassandra had not told him the contents of her letter, as much as she loved the older woman, Cassandra had always been protective of Simon. It was easy to understand why though, after losing her husband to such a brutal death, Simon was all she had left in this world. Lilia had some sympathy for that. "I believe she realizes you may want to explore beyond the bounds of where we grew up, as most of us do when we reach a certain age. She thinks I might be able to help with that."

    Once he took the clothing, she walked back to her luggage and lifted a hand over her eyes as she turned back. Witches tended to be somewhat less inhibited about modesty and decorum, but Lilia had been in the city long enough and around enough humans that she had been deeply immersed in their behavior.

    "I specialized in glamour spells, usually tied to trinkets, jewelry or clothing." She explained, it had been years since either of them had seen each other, and she was not sure if he kept up on what she had been doing during that time.

    "I'm glad to see both of you again." Her smiled was not obscured by her hand, just her eyes. It was a sincere expression, she was glad to be home once again.
     
  4. Hekazu

    Hekazu Menagerie Warden Member

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    Simon saw it in her eyes, or rather how she wasn't looking at him. She was upholding those same rules of modesty he'd worried about just now. It was funny seeing somebody smiling and averting their eyes at the same time, but that was probably how it was if they caught a childhood friend skinny dipping and were subsequently asked to toss them some clothes. She'd just arrived, he was told, and to be fair it very much looked like it. "I did already say it, but your luggage does say as much", he pointed out jovially, accepting back those clothes of his. He'd still have to take a moment to let water flow down his rubbery skin and drip from the light brown locks hanging from his scalp, since despite the augmented nature of his clothing they were still capable of getting wet, and if they did it took next to forever to get the damp stains out with how they were protected.

    They weren't all that remarkable on the outside, resembling very closely the working attire of a less well-off farmhand all the way to not having shoes incorporated into the outfit, but the real trick was the lining on the inside of his shirt whose sleeves he nearly always kept rolled up and the darker brown trousers. They were both covered in a thin layer of wax, designed to keep the little dampness that was always present on Simon's skin there. Him drying up brought nothing but discomfort to anyone, and if one looked closely they might note a slight weave of magic, something that had been applied to the wax to keep it from making everything stiff when it was being worn. Simon dropped off from the rock and dressed himself in cover granted by it and what he couldn't out of risk of drenching his clothes he could make do with Lilia looking more into her fingers than the surrounding world. "And there, all done! Let me see to that baggage now, no reason for you to have to lug it around any more!" he declared, extending his hand towards her. He was prepared to insist if it got to it. Short as the distance may be, he had still offered and wouldn't want to be useless especially if she was here to help him out on something else.

    Once the two would begin moving into the direction of the cabin, Simon would open his mouth once more, a smile very similar to his interlocutor's on his lips: "I'm not so sure if it's me who wants to go. I would be happy with just this lake here. But I have been getting into more trouble lately. More nets. Stronger too. I think they are trying to trap me after I've had to break free of a few nets. Careless, I know, but mother still says that's as good as my second name. And she's right. I've not changed from the time I fell in the well when we were playing around it. Do you remember how you… hm, you do, don't you?" He took the opportunity to reminisce for what little time they still had with just the two of them before mother would join the conversation and shift everything into the "important" bits that she had actually called Lilia here for. Something Simon really could not care less about at this moment in time, but he also knew better than to fight against that woman's word.

    Simon would set the baggage down next to the door at the back and run his finger along the frame, tongue sticking out of the right corner of his mouth. He'd need to make another stroke, and only a little past halfway of that would he suddenly shift the direction upwards and a small click came from the inside. "I've picked up some magic too", he explained all the gesturing. "It's hortomancy. Plant magic. A little awkward when so many plants are on land and…" Simon shrugged, not thinking it really that necessary to continue that sentence to its actual conclusion. He opened the door into the house and picked Lilia's luggage up again only to set it back down on the other side of the door. Despite being a male and not of terribly bad posture, that didn't mean he would be any more capable of carrying that stuff around. Perhaps even less so, with how his bones were ever so slightly softer. But it led to some other advantages if one knew where to look for them.

    "Mother! I'm back, and Lilia is here too! Can you finally tell me what this is all about?" he hollered into the house, stepping towards the nearby kitchen table and gesturing at the bench on the side of it closer to the door they'd entered through. "Make yourself comfortable. I'll put the kettle on", he instructed his friend while moving past the table himself and getting on with the task he'd said he would.
     
  5. Alchemy

    Alchemy Must be the season of the witch... Administrator

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    She had many memories of Simon, it was part of why she could understand Cassandra's concerns. He was always well-intentioned, but more often than not, he was also prone to explore the world around him. Adventurous is probably what she would call it now. If he was breaking fishnets, those that fished in the village had to wonder what caused such a break in their nets. The fish in this area typically did not grow very big, maybe a few meters long at most. "I remember the well." She chuckled, nodding her head.

    The light expression on her face shifted as he mentioned magic. That was something she had not expected. She was nearly certain one of his parents had a similar ability, or at least that was what she believed she had heard as a child. His life was such an odd mystery, one she knew Cassandra thought of as a blessing. She had written as much in her letter, pouring out her love for her son on the pages. "That's impressive. I lack even a green thumb, it's probably why I chose to relocate to the city." Her skills were more useful there too, but mostly for vane reasons. Everyone wanted to look different in some way, especially those of station. They would find a small flaw and convince themselves it was a blight on their complexion. Lilia tried not to make a big show of her surprise at his revelation, she did not want him to feel odd about it.

    Once they were inside, it did not take long for his mother to turn the corner. Before Lilia could manage to settle into the bench, Cassandra pulled her into a tight hug and then pulled back to look at her, cupping Lilia's face in her hands. "Oh my, you look so much like your mother, but I see you still have your father's hair," Cassandra commented, twirling one of Lilia's curls in her hand before turning her attention to her son.

    "Let's not be rude to our guest, Simon, she's had a long journey, our troubles can wait a moment," Cassandra said, gesturing for Lilia to sit down.

    Lilia shook her head. "Don't be silly, I'm fine. A bit of tea or coffee and I'll be right as rain." Lilia responded, but Cassandra seemed hesitant. The older woman took a deep breath and her gaze passed between both of them.

    "Simon may have mentioned some of the trouble he's been having, but my fears extend beyond that. People fear what they do not understand, enough of our brothers and sisters in the covens have been hurt or even killed over those fears. I worry that Simon is not safe here, not with his...unique features. I reached out because I thought you might be able to help. word of your talents has traveled widely through the covens." Cassandra explained. She had said the word unique in a way that held love and respect in it. It caused a soft smile to blossom on Lilia's lips.

    "If Simon is okay with it, I would be more than happy to try and craft some useful things to help him blend in. I can't image it would be much trouble beyond what I make for people back home. Slight changes," Lilia began, shifting her eyes from Cassandra to Simon. "We could use a pair of glasses to...enhance your eyes, keep them the same color, but more the size of a human. I might be able to work something in for the hair there as well..." She brainstormed aloud. "They could all be temporary, something like a tool you could use when you wish to."
     
  6. Hekazu

    Hekazu Menagerie Warden Member

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    Was the lack of the green thumb truly the reason Lilia had headed off into the big city? Simon had his own doubts about that. She'd always looked at things in a little different light than him, and it hadn't changed if he had to put in a guess. But it was true that her magic was more at home in such a locale. Mother had mentioned it quite a few times. So now that she was here, he suspected that she would be asked to try her magic on him. But he also had his doubts about it truly working out as intended. After all, it would not be the first time it was attempted on him. Nobody as capable as her had been at it, that much mother had made clear to him, but why else would she have called his childhood friend all the way here after these years?

    As he'd suspected, his mother was quick on her feet when she heard that the expected guest had arrived. She had been having some sleepless nights lately so Simon did feel a little bad about waking her up, but those nights were the direct result of her awaiting an answer to her invitation. So despite her arrival meaning the end to her finally successful rest, it would hopefully also mean change that would bring sleep back to her eyes in the night. Yet as long as Simon was to stay here, she might just worry herself sick about his nighttime swims, and even now he could see her give him the side eye for only returning this late. Or early, whichever way one wanted to look at it.

    Simon had just lit the flame under the kettle and poured water into it when he was chastised about not giving Lilia a moment of rest after her long journey. The male puffed through his snub nose, shaking his head and throwing little droplets from his hair around himself on the working surfaces and the carpet of the kitchen. He'd have said something, but Lilia was faster. She promised she'd be fine if she got a bit of tea or coffee, to which Simon responded by picking up an oven mitt and pulling it over his left hand before opening a metal box and a knife, soon whittling away at a slab of tea held in the covered hand to spare the stuff from being undried too soon. "If only we were so wealthy. Coffee costs a fortune in these parts", Simon noted with yet another chuckle, all too happy meeting Lilia to consider the look his mother gave him, talking like that about the wealth of the household. But when Lilia had last been here, she'd known it all. What harm was it? And it looked like Cassandra got this too, not glaring at her 'son' for longer than a couple seconds.

    At least once the discussion moved on to the very subject Simon had suggested earlier, things were slowly starting to come to light, and he was spared from further nasty looks on account of his behaviour. He chose to stand nearby, leaning against the dividing wall between the little kitchen corner and the larger living space with a fireplace and a few chairs, as well as the large bed tucked away in the corner and the dining table there on the opposite end of the room from the kitchen, if on the same wall. It wasn't an opulent cabin by any means, just a single room where everything fit in and a little extension for the cooking, but it was homely. They discussed Lilia's talents again, and Simon heard the words he'd expected. She believed this would be something that she could get done with little alterations to her usual magic.

    His mother was already looking rather happy, but Simon's smile had turned to a more contemplative expression, the oven mitt finally coming off as he tucked it into his armpit and touched his chin with the hand that had been confined within it. "Didn't we try something of the sort, mother? The other witch that came by that one time?" he asked his question, Cassandra losing a bit of her perkiness as a result but soon reconstructing the appearance that had been there just now.

    "Oh but they were nothing as capable as Lilia is, just a small timer whose expertise was in something completely different. She's an expert, so if everything goes well we might not even need to think about what could come after it", she explained what was different this time around, now finally daring let it slip that there was something else than only these summons of his old friend planned. Which, knowing her, tended to mean that she didn't believe in the success of the primary plan enough to not plan for the next one. Simon smacked his lips, but had no need to verbalise an answer. "But dear Simon is right, it's not as simple as changing a human is. In fact, Pauline told us that she had never felt such a strange reaction from her magic when she tried…"

    The kettle whistled now, and Simon raised a few fingers up in the air as the mark of him having heard it as well, turning to get it off the fire and pour the water into the cups. Cassandra took this time to lean closer to Lilia, lowering her voice to whisper a few more details: "I have no doubts you can see plain as day that he is not a child born to me… he comes from some strange alchemy, and-" With the whistle of the kettle cutting off, so did the whispering, Cassandra falling back to her side of the table as if nothing had happened in this brief period of time. "A little sugar for me Simon dear. And feel free to put some for yourself too. It is not every day that we have a touching reunion under this roof. Any for you, Lilia dear?"

    Simon would bring the cups with the tea leaves floating in them to the table, sugar added according to the given specifications. A third of a spoon for mother, an entire spoonful for him, and something close to what Lilia had asked for for her. He could finally join the others at the table, sitting down by his mother's side. "If we do change my eyes, I hope it won't put pressure on them. Last time I felt like someone was tightening a band around my head", he revealed one of the more unfortunate details about the earlier attempts, earning himself a little nudge under the table. Lilia knew what she was doing!
     
  7. Alchemy

    Alchemy Must be the season of the witch... Administrator

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    Lilia listened as Simon spoke. She could not help but wonder if this was not as important to him, but she knew that Cassandra just feared for his safety and wanted him to have what most children had. A normal life. That's what children were supposed to do, to grow and leave the nest and find someone to build their own nest with. Lilia imagined that was sort of complicated for Simon. As Cassandra explained what had already been attempted, her gaze narrowed in thought.

    "Magic does sometimes struggle to impact natural things, if it goes against their nature." Lilia agreed and now her mind was spinning about Simon and his origin. He was made, not birthed, she knew that much even before Cassandra confirmed it. People talked of the sort of monsters witches could bring into the world, but it was mostly rubbish. If someone had created him with strong intentions, then it might be the magic or something like it that created him, that was pushing so hard against any attempt at using a glamour. Glamours were not strong magic, they were generally very subtle...Even when she had used more complicated spells to change someone's appearance completely, it was mostly about intention and small tricks.

    "A spoonful, please." She responded when asked about sugar, but her mind was still deep in thought. She also cringed when Simon mentioned that the last attempt had caused him pain. "That's not how good glamours should work. You are still you, your body is still the way it is, it just doesn't appear that way to others." It was like using light and reflection and imagination all in one, to alter basic perception. Lilia took a sip of her tea and continued to ponder, having sympathy for both of the people before her.

    "I would assume it's some kind of issue with mixing magics. Most of my spells don't work on beings that are inherently magical, but some you can work around it or harmonize with their innate magic. It's like a song, the notes have to be in alignment for the melody to work." Those spells were markedly more complicated than what she did in the city and she had only attempted them once or twice. She considered the options before her and then lifted her eyes back to Simon.

    "It would mean you could travel, you could see more than just this small town, if we're able to get the spells to work. I don't think I would attempt to alter things like your shifting appearance in water...Do you have control over that? If you were splashed by a carriage, would you remain upright?" It probably seemed like a silly question, but she was actually curious. She wanted to give Simon his freedom, but it also had to be his choice and not just his mother's good intentions.
     
  8. Hekazu

    Hekazu Menagerie Warden Member

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    Simon couldn't say he would be very knowledgeable about magic despite having learnt some of that for himself. He had been warned that attempting to use magic on already magical things could be hazardous, but in the end he'd never felt the need to do much of that with his expertise laying with the plants. And those had the common denominator of not being that magical, while he was much more so. He'd mostly stay passive to the side of the conversation for the beginning, letting his mother and old friend talk the details they understood more thoroughly as proper witches, but soon the curious detail he'd offered found its way to the centre of the discussion. Apparently it was very unlike the type of magic Lilia was experienced with to act like it had with him just then, which left them wondering what might be the root cause for such an effect. They did have a suspicion about it very soon though, if not one that Simon could agree with.

    Their suggestion was that of him being simply so strange that the magic might not have done what it had been supposed to, that a disharmony had set the effect off its intended mark. Simon didn't shake his head while he stirred his tea, waiting for the sugar to settle and the leaves to impart their colour into the steaming water, but in his mind he questioned if the magic offered had been of Lilia's sort at all. Glamours, whatever they call it, how she described it didn't sound like the kind of magic that had been done at all. Somehow he felt that what the intent had been hadn't really been to mask him as much as it may have been to change him. He believed this was something his innate magic might really have fought against, driven the effect aside and returned him to how he was usually. Or at least how he was on land most often. Speaking of, Simon raised his downcast eyes up to meet Lilia's as soon as he was addressed again, a question asked of him.

    It was now about the matter of control he had about his own transformations. Cassandra knew the answer well, and Lilia had once done it too. But the years hadn't been that kind to her memories of her friend it seemed, yet when she had been a child he hadn't been a strange creature to her in the first place, and so how could she be expected to remember all the quirks that were there? Still it stung Simon a little. She must have come know so many other people, more interesting folk than him, people who would have taken his place in her life. Not that she wouldn't be allowed to know others, but she could have remembered him a little better. Simon bit the inside of his cheek and swallowed the bitterness he felt, forcing a hint of a smirk onto his face. "I've got full control on that. If I wanted to, I could remove my trousers and shift right back on to my more lake suited appearance. But I don't think I should prove that right now", he tried to laugh, but it came out as a forced half-chuckle.

    This failed attempt at seeming collected brought to him shame, and Simon followed that up by trying to take a sip of his drink. Too hot. Not complete in its brewing either. That didn't help any, he had to concede. And so he fell back into momentary silence, letting those that knew better about the current situation do the considering of matters for him. That was how it had always been, more or less. And he was starting to see the bad sides of it now, suddenly more acutely than in any of the years before now. Maybe heading out to explore the world a little wasn't such a bad idea after all?

    Simon's mother noted this sudden pensiveness of her son, and glanced at both him and Lilia with a hint of worry in her eyes, though she'd soon try to bring her unusual boy back to the reality with the other two. "I'm not pushing you out Simon, but it may not be safe here. I don't want you to go, but…" she assured him of her good intentions, even earning a nod and a hum from the freed warden. Simon understood. His eyes were raised again to meet Lilia's, and he waited to hear what she had to say next. If she had no words to say immediately or in only a short while, he would break the suddenly much more awkward air instead:

    "I guess that means I should leave my home behind. Like when you last left." A pause. "But this time it'd be the two of us on our way to… where?" Despite being quite the free spirit, he didn't like the idea of just buggering off to nowhere. There had to be a goal of some sort, or it'd be more likely to get nothing done than be of any help.
     
  9. Alchemy

    Alchemy Must be the season of the witch... Administrator

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    9:55 AM
    Lilia could tell there was some sort of tension, she had tried to remember all the details of her childhood. Simon was certainly unique, but her travels had led her to meet all different kinds of witches and other folk. Shape-shifters, beings that were human by seemed to have some kind of elemental quality to their magic, and even those who stood on the line between magic and science, the alchemists. She had not forgotten Simon, her life and mind had simply just expanded once she left here.

    She also did not want to force this on him. There were dangers, Cassandra made that clear, but Lilia thought Simon was more than capable to rise to that challenge. Children were always a bit more capable than their parents assumed. She did not expect him to offer to leave his home so willingly, moments ago he had seemed so happy to stay here and now he was looking at her as if he needed an answer to his question. Lilia held up a hand and went to her suitcase, opening it and rummaging through the contents. There was a decent size woolen hat inside, it was supposed to be a gift for Simon, but as she held it in her hands, Lilia chanted over it for a moment.

    When she stood back up, she held it out to him. "It should, in theory, make your eyes appear to others as more human-like. And it'll cover the hair until I can find a better piece for it." She set the hat on the table, near his cup, and settled back into where she had been sitting.

    "If you want to leave, we could go to the city together. You could meet my mentor and perhaps she could help even more than I could." She offered, though they would not really know if the magic even worked until he tried on the hat. Lilia finally stretched a hand across the table and put her fingers around his own hand. "Perhaps we could learn more of your origin as well, together. What happened to your father was a tragedy, but he had returned from a town south of here, yes? You are as magical as your mother and I, perhaps more so. Maybe if we found out more about how you came into being, we could figure out how to give you more control over your appearance."

    If he was able to shift and change the way his legs looked, she wondered if that ability could be extended. "It is not surprising that it was painful when someone else tried to alter your nature, but if your mind is guiding the change it may not be so painful or foreign."

    She shrugged her shoulders and leaned back in her seat. "It's up to you though. We can go south and seek out more of your story, or return to the city if my magic seems to work..."
     
  10. Hekazu

    Hekazu Menagerie Warden Member

    Messages:
    33
    Local Time:
    6:55 PM
    Simon wasn't the most apt at reading people and situations, given his very limited number of encounters with other people, but the good thing about not having met many people meant that those that actually were around you were those that you could follow even the smallest tick on, when there was no need to form more general rules. Or so he believed either way. And right now, his mother was more worried that usual. His words had caused this. Lilia, too, was surprised, but she didn't appear quite as worried as Cassandra was. No, she had this strange hopeful air about herself. Like she'd been waiting for him to say these words, even if she had not been expecting them. He'd seen that so many years ago the last time it happened. And now it was here again. He accepted the hat that she'd spoken at length about and held it in his hand. So this was her attempt at making him more human, was it?

    In truth, despite all of the words about how if he accepted the change the glamour would settle in easier, if the transformation was guided by his body, helped by his inner adaptation, everything should go more smoothly. But he didn't know if he truly believed in the fact that he wanted to change. Did he honestly want to be a human among humans? Simon turned the hat in his hands a few times, his eyes adopting a vacant look that readily betrayed that he wasn't on this plane of existence in his thoughts. He wasn't a human, and he knew this. He had never been a human, and that much had been obvious even when he'd believed he still was one. He'd always known, and being told that it was indeed the case, it had both surprised him and it had not. The façade had stood long, but rotten on the inside for all that time. Now they aimed to build it anew. Would he accept that role? No, he didn't think he would. But he would try, for it was asked of him. Simon raised the hat to his head, and felt a tingle of magic over himself.

    This time the spells worked as had been intended to the point of him not feeling discomfort with them. Yet past that point, the results were disappointing. His eyes may have shrunk a little, but even a casual observer could tell they were still much too large and for a human, never mind the fact Simon was squinting here in the light of the climbing sun. His hair, well that he might have been able to stuff under the hat if he tried. He hadn't really. After all, this was trying to find something to test if it worked on his eyes. And even if it had, would it really have made a difference with how there was an obvious shift of colour towards his sides and back, even up his neck when it came to the colours of his body? Simon didn't believe this would be nearly enough. And with his disbelief and unusual nature, the magic truly had a hard time setting in, fighting his own magical aptitude. The most well versed ones could see this. Cassandra, for one, had no difficulty seeing the proverbial sparks flying. But she elected not to say a word. It was what her son felt, and discrediting it would be silly.

    It wasn't easy for the mother to let her son fly from his nest. Especially not if he was unable to pass himself off as a human even with the aid of a skilled witch like Lilia. But then again, if there ever was a time when he could allow Simon to go, it had to be now that he had a pair of capable hands with him that she could trust to watch over him. The older witch allowed herself a hint of a smile when Lilia's fingers wrapped around Simon's hand and her son raised his head up higher, those unchanged eyes with the faintest ripple and splash of colour in the otherwise dull irises. They would do fine. No matter what the decision was, all she could do was trust him and her on this one. She'd done all she could.

    Simon slowly raised his hand back to the hat when Lilia had leaned back, and as he lifted it off his head he felt the shroud of her magic falling away more keenly than he'd felt it setting upon him. "So how was it then?" he asked, scepticism audible in his voice. Cassandra subtly shook her head, quite aware of one big obstacle in the way of the disguise. Simon himself. As his suspicions would be confirmed, Simon would sigh. "Then we will just have to be more careful, won't we?" he asked and crossed his arms, considering their next destinations. And of those two, to either seek out things about himself or to try to hide them even further? It didn't take the young man three consecutive thoughts to form an opinion on that.

    "We should go South. If my nature is in the way of all this, then we need to find out what my nature is. I don't know much myself, and that mystery gnaws at me", he openly admitted. Cassandra had told him all she knew. That he had been brought most of the way here by his late father, but he had perished on the way. Yet he had survived this violent attack, and been brought up here in secrecy. If he ever found his true parent, it was insinuated, it would not end well. But he had to know. So it was with young hearts and minds. They chose the foolhardy path out of principle. "We might not know much to go on, and I might not be able to talk with people, but…" he listed all the things that were in the way of this plan working out. These two quite hefty roadblocks. But damn him to hell if he would not make an honest attempt at overcoming them! Without even noticing it, he had stood up with his hands pressed against the table. A few seconds later he became aware of the fact, took a confused look around and sat back down, making eye contact with Lilia. So what was the first step here? Did she have anything to go on?

    Yet the last person he expected that answer to come from was his mother. "You are born from alchemy, Simon", she reminded her son. "There are not many people who would have the ability to create something as complex as you, or the blind pride to go after someone that bought from them out of some bizarre principle. No other reason comes to mind. No other reason for your father to be attacked like that. That thing… that was no animal of natural origin. The one you came from, the one who took my dear Harris from us… they are one and the same. And people like that don't make appearances often. If there is someone alive from back then, they will remember." To see her precious children depart was a pain in her chest she could hardly endure, but worse off would they all be if she hadn't spoken these words to set them on a trail. She'd only have to hold until the two would be out. Then she could cry of the next loss and fall in line with the lonely life. But that wasn't yet. It was on the horizon, but just now they were still here. Why say the goodbyes before she had to? Oh if only it was so simple.
     
  11. Alchemy

    Alchemy Must be the season of the witch... Administrator

    Messages:
    2,565
    Local Time:
    9:55 AM
    When Cassandra said the word alchemy, Lilia's eyes narrowed. It brought to mind a memory she had not thought of in a long time, whispers her parents had made, after a trip to the city. Something about an alchemist who made all manner of helpful creatures, but something about him had rubbed her mother the wrong way. The memory in and of itself did not give Lilia much to cling to. For the life of her, she could not remember the alchemist's name or really much about him, just that he had given her mother a bad feeling.

    "The blackwood coven is to the south." She stated. "I've met a few girls from there, I don't think it will be too much trouble to find their mothers." Her eyes fell on Cassandra then, who was clearly filled with worry, and Lilia wondered if there was a way to calm her fears. The future was uncertain, no matter what path they took, but she could see that the woman feared the thing that took her husband would also kill her son. Simon was more than just a creature of the alchemist, though, Lilia was certain of that. He was much more human than any creature she had come across in her travels, and the magic he mentioned....Her eyes widened and she realized something she was not sure she should share, for fear it would only make Cassandra's fears grow.

    If the creature had killed Harris, there was likely blood involved. Blood magic was a tricky but powerful thing. Her eyes shifted to the man in front of her, memories of their childhood together fluttered through her brain. She dared not say her theory out loud, but it was possible Simon was the son of more than one kind of magic.

    Instead, she forced her face neutral and reached for Cassandra's hand. "I will keep him safe. Harris did not know he would be pursued, we will be more careful." She said, lifting her eyes back to Simon. Lilia was tired from her travels already, but she got the sense that remaining here would only prolong Cassandra's suffering. Her eyes lifted to the hat and she wondered if she could tweak the magic already inside of it, enough to mask what Simon needed to look a bit more normal.

    "I have powder in my luggage, we could mask the colors of your skin with it, or just note it as a peculiar birthmark." Lilia shrugged her shoulders and stood up, moving to stand behind Simon. "Tell me if there is any pain, even a tingle, I'll stop." She held her hands out to either side of his head and closed her eyes. Lilia focused on the hat she had made and the mask it was intended to make for Simon. It was meant to be a bit like glasses, something that changed the look of his face to others, but only enhanced his own sight. She focused, weaving the magical energy to try and make it compliment the energy that came off of Simon. If this worked, he might look normal enough that they could travel without trouble...