Fable - Ask Fumbles and Foibles

A roleplay which may be open to join but you must ask the creator first

Kristen Pirian

Pirian's Chosen
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DAY ONE


You have one week, Initiate Pirian.

One week! One week! Just seven days to discover a whole new spell from her magic, practice it, and use it in a spar with another Initiate and win with it. Proctor Magomo often asked of her to overcome things which she thought insurmountable, he pushed her quite frequently just to the very edge of what she thought was her limit, and then would push her even further beyond that new achievement, but this!? Oh, but it seemed too much this time!

Kristen, first to arrive as usual and thus presently alone in Proctor Penworth's classroom (Penworth was also the one Proctor constantly late to his own classes), sat at her desk with her arms folded into a pillow and her face buried in them. She looked the precise picture of girl exhausted. So overwhelmed was she by Proctor Magomo's surprise assignment that she hadn't gotten a wink of sleep; she'd spent the night fretting about how even to begin going about this!

She groaned in frustration and fatigue.

Right as one of her peers (perhaps characteristically or uncharacteristically early as well) walked into the classroom.
 
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Delaney Lennox

Queen of Shadows
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The peer that entered the classroom was Delaney.

She, with her unusual sense of always knowing where Kristen was, had sensed something was wrong at breakfast. She didn't bring it up around anyone though. That was not who she was. People knew that she and Kristen had a strange bond but she didn't call attention to it among the general populace of Initiates.

"Hey Kristen," Delaney said as she walked over to the desk in front of her friend. She sat herself on the actual desk with her feet resting on the chair. "What's wrong? Do I need to kill anyone for you?" She smiled but there was no joking in her eyes.

Kristen Pirian
 
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Kristen Pirian

Pirian's Chosen
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Kristen raised her head from her arms, her movements as if she were covered in a heavy sludge. "Huh?"

And then see saw who it was, right as the sound of the voice registered. "Oh. Hello, Delaney." She tried to manage a smile, but it just felt wrong, like some kind of unpleasant acid on her face. The dark cloud hanging above her head just poisoned it.

Said dark cloud also, funnily enough, blunted Delaney's offer. Normally it would have made Kristen anxious to hear her speak so, but today she simply took it in stride. "No, Delaney, it isn't something of the sort. Proctor Magomo has given me a task that...oh gosh, a task that I feel is insurmountable. I am to discover an entirely new spell from my magic, Delaney! In one week!"

And practice with it. And win a spar with it!

"How should I even begin?" The first manifestations of her magic had come easily enough, but progress had stalled after that. "What...may I ask what you have done in the past to improve your own magic, Delaney?"

Delaney Lennox
 

Delaney Lennox

Queen of Shadows
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"I hate that dick," Delaney said in response to the offending party being Magomo. He was constantly trying to get Kristen to quit or trying to get her killed. She was not a fan of that at all. She would kill him someday. Soon. When Kristen wouldn't connect it straight back to her and get all huffy about it. Although...she was cute when she got huffy.

Delaney thought about her power and what she could add to her arsenal. "Maybe something with impaling? Impaling is always fun," she said with a shrug.

Kristen's question stopped Delaney in her tracks. What had she done to improve her magic? She just let her shadows have their fun. "I just fed my shadows and then they do what I tell them. They also do what they want but most of the time they listen to me."

Kristen Pirian
 
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Kristen Pirian

Pirian's Chosen
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Delaney had put it, erhm...bluntly, concerning Proctor Magomo, but, yes, there certainly were days when Kristen felt that sentiment--albeit more toned down. She disliked Proctor Magomo. But, as the man himself had said, You don't have to like me, Initiate, you just have to do what you're told. And then he made her run until she puked.

Impaling? Why, that was rather brutal wasn't it? Still, this was the sort of thing Kristen needed. Ideas and concepts she would not have thought of herself. Mayhap that was something Delaney did with her shadows. Impaled people.

Kristen shivered lightly. Gruesome. Yet the idea, quietly, implanted itself in the back of her mind.

"Hmmm..." Kristen plopped on elbow onto her desk and rested her chin on the shelf of her palm. "You just feed your shadows..." Delaney's magic, of course, was of a different character than Kristen's, but there had to be a similar idea. Right?

"...maybe I could try praying?" She brightened up momentarily, then that spark went away. "But I pray everyday. Such is the nature of Divine magic. You feed your shadows and that helps, so I cannot help but think there must be a way for me to...oh...feed my own magic? In some form? I hardly know if I'm even phrasing this correctly."

Then she looked to Delaney, that spark back in a reserved capacity. "Tell me a story, Delaney. A story of discovery from your own experience."

Delaney Lennox
 

Delaney Lennox

Queen of Shadows
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Kristen wanted to hear a story about discovery. Obviously the one about killing her baby sister and discovering her magic the first time was not the one she meant.

"It took me a while to realize that I could control the darkness. For the longest time, it just whispered to me and told me what to do and I did it," Delaney shrugged. She had been a child. "One day when I was nine, the Proctors had me go against another Initiate. He was beating me so badly. I couldn't stand against him and he was going to kill me. My shadows told me to use them...so I did."

She slowly rose from the desk and started to walk around the classroom. "I wished him him to be stabbed in the heart and to watch him bleed it. They did it. One minute he was about to slice my throat open and the next...he was dead." Another shrug. "He was the first person I killed at the Academy. The first time I had used the darkness as a weapon."

Delaney came and crouched in front of Kristens desk. "Maybe you have to be pushed and something will manifest?"

Kristen Pirian
 
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Kristen Pirian

Pirian's Chosen
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Kristen listened to Delaney's story with a searching and imaginative eye, paying attention yet also thinking about how her best friend's experience could translate into her own.

One day when I was nine...

Kristen's arm slowly descended from holding up her chin to lay flat on the desk. And now she was watching Delaney with a rapt interest. Nine years old. The same age as I when I was kidnapped!

I couldn't stand against him and he was going to kill me.


Kristen's lips parted ever so slightly. Dominic Foresend. Master of the Blades. I was powerless before him.

I wished him to be stabbed in the heart...they did it.


A tiny, whispering breath glided in through Kristen's lips, a near silent gasp. I remember looking up to Dominic as he held me, as the Battle was raging down at the beach. I looked up to him. And through my fear...I...I...

I cursed him.


Little embers of both awe and excitement alighted in her eyes.

"Maybe I do! Delaney, maybe I do!" Kristen clapped her hands together, ready to leap out of her seat and give her a big...but Fermin and Talea walked into the classroom just then, shuffling toward their seats, and she thought differently of it. Perhaps later!

"Thank you, Delaney! I will need to check on something, but you've been of great help!"

Delaney Lennox
 

Kristen Pirian

Pirian's Chosen
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DAY TWO


During free period the next day, Kristen was fortunate enough to escape to the library without bumping into any Proctors who might have been intent on "occupying" her time, or into any of the (should she say) "less friendly" Initiates who might've been belligerent with her just because she was Kristen Pirian. Her morning classes weren't especially helpful, stacking on assignments as they had which, while eminently doable, would nonetheless chip away at the slim budget of time she'd been allotted by Proctor Magomo.

The library was a special place. Here a certain quiet could be found, away from the grunts of exertion and combat in the sparring arenas or from the loud clamor of particular magics being practiced at "the Range."

Kristen entered, and she could hear the light shuffle of her Academy fatigues as she walked. It would have been nice to relax here for the whole of her free period, but all she wanted to do was check on something. Confirm something.

The aisles swept by as Kristen went. Histories, natural philosophy, mathematics, languages, ah, magical disciplines.

Kristen turned down that aisle, only having to stop herself immediately, heels digging into the floor, lest she run right into...

Chasmine
 

Chasmine

The Odd One
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Chasmine had been standing on her tip-toes, attempting to put a rather large tome back into place on a very high shelf. Unfortunately, Chas was not of the many students within her class blessed with exceptional altitude. The shelf continued to hold itself stubbornly just out of reach and she continued to balance precariously on the toes of her shoes.

Kristen appeared in her peripheral and suddenly the book leapt from Chasmine's hand in fright, slapping the platinum-haired initiate on the head as it flumbled to the floor.

"Oh!" Chasmine gave a soft gasp, turning wide, pale eyes to look at Kristen, "Hello Kristen Pirian. Please watch your step, the books are unusually skittish today."
 
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Kristen Pirian

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Kristen, almost matching Chasmine, let out a gasp as well when the book fell and bounced off of her head. She reached out a hand halfway between them.

"Chasmine, are you alright? 'Twas not my intention to disturb you so!"

Yes, it was true, Kristen had been quite cross with Chasmine in the wake of what happened at the First Annual Solstice Ball. She blamed the girl for ruining what should have been a lovely evening. This was her first time interacting with Chasmine in any capacity since, but, oooh, it just felt unseemly to remain irritated with her. Why, it was actually most difficult to believe that the incredibly destructive scream had originated from Chasmine and not some other initiate!

Chasmine
 

Chasmine

The Odd One
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"Oh, yes, I am quite fine," Chasmine rubbed at her head and stooped to retrieve the wayward tome from its dramatic display on the floor, "of all the things to be assaulted by at the Academy, I daresay I prefer a book."

She gently brushed the cover free of dust before folding the book against her chest, hugged beneath her arms, "You appeared to be moving with purpose. Are you in trouble?"

Generally anyone moving with that much haste through the Academy was either in trouble, or making for it. Kristen, so far as Chasmine was aware, did not make a habit of seeking trouble.
 
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Kristen Pirian

Pirian's Chosen
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Well, she did have a point, did she not? A book was an infinitely more preferable option rather than say, oh, those hollow wooden sticks some Proctors favored. And there was a list (a dreadfully long list) of other Initiates who could stage an assault of ghastly proportions upon her in the sparring arena. (And she was meant to fight and win over one of them?? Aionus, preserve her!)

"Oh no. I am not in trouble. Or, at least, not yet, I ought to say. I've an assignment which bears some..." Kristen scratched the back of her neck nervously, almost guiltily, "...extensive preparations, and it behooves me to make all due haste to ensure I complete it on time."

She perked up.

"That said! You would not have happened to notice any tomes on Divine Magic, have you, Chasmine? I understand the library underwent some slight reorganization last month, so I fear they may have been moved."

Chasmine
 

Chasmine

The Odd One
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Chasmine listened with rapt attention despite the fact that it looked like she may have become lost in a daydream. Her own thoughts lingered on the recent expansion of the library and the subsequent shuffling of the stacks to make room.

"As I understand, the academy received a sizeable donation to the library from one of the noble houses. There are quite a few more books on the shelves now, though I feel just as many have gone missing." She set the tome down on a lower shelf and turned to look further down the aisle with a thoughtful touch of hand to chin, "I do not recall there being many books specifically on Divine Magic. It doesn't seem to be a very common field of study here, but perhaps you might look for any books on the Radiant Church of Cortos."
 
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Kristen Pirian

Pirian's Chosen
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What a time for the library to be reorganized! Her reliable tome on Divine Magic was likely tossed aside with the others that Chasmine said had gone missing. Vel Anir was not...very fond of religion, to put it lightly. No spiritual devotions of any kind. Kristen's own magic was tolerated, her prayers and faith tolerated where otherwise it would have been illegal, for the sole reason that manifest power (however meek) came from it. That said, the library's old tome on Divine Magic was still unlikely to survive the librarian's dubious gaze and withering judgment.

But Chasmine came through for her.

"Oh! That's a brilliant suggestion, Chasmine! Thank you!"

A curiosity kindled to life just then, halting her step to go in search of such a book on the Church.

"Chasmine, have you...how shall I say this...was there ever something which prompted a powerful inspiration in you? Something from an unexpected place?"

Kristen felt that was very likely where her own breakthrough might come. A source unexpected. Reading of the Radiant Church might well elucidate her faith, and thereby her own magic, by comparison and contrast.

Chasmine
 
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Chasmine

The Odd One
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Pleased to be considered brilliant in any way, however small, Chasmine offered Kristen a fleetingly warm smile, "Of course, Kristen."

She'd turned to resume her battle with this large tome and its high shelf, but paused as Kristen asked after something rather peculiar.

"Powerful...inspiration?" Chas blinked curiously at her, "do you mean like a muse?"
 
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Kristen Pirian

Pirian's Chosen
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"Oh." Kristen considered it. "Well, yes, I suppose that fits the category in question." And she warmed to it a bit more, "Yes, like a muse! What might have prompted a visitation from a muse for you? For your magic or for a craft or...or for anything else. Surely you've felt that invigorating spark of inspiration before."

Perhaps apropos of whose company she was currently in, Kristen felt as though she were chasing ghosts. It was her hope that reading about the Radiant Church might be the inspiration she needed to further her Divine Magic, but...that's all it was. A hope. Yet this was currently all she had. Mayhap all she could have. Searching deliberately for something as fickle and elusive as inspiration was like trying to find a buried treasure on some remote island without so much as a map.

Kristen took notice of Chasmine's vertical struggles then, and interjected as an aside, "Would you like some help with that, Chasmine?"

Chasmine
 
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Chasmine

The Odd One
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Chasmine pondered the question a few moments, "Well...if I am feeling particularly stuck, I meditate, drink tea, and partake in an enlightening journey of the mind and soul."

A blink, then, and a glance to the book, "Oh no, if I do not overcome the challenge on my own this book will never respect me again."
 

Kristen Pirian

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Meditate. Oh! She could do that! Raf had explained the very basics to her, and, well, whilst a scant few fledgling attempts made her no master, she could at least try it. Drink tea. It would be lovely if the Academy dining hall served tea, but alas--though Chasmine seemed to imply that she had a ready cache of tea, sourced through methods unspoken, available for imbibing. Partake in an enlightening journey...? Oh. Well. Kristen wasn't quite sure how she might do that, but...

Kristen bent her knees and dipped herself in a quick half-curtesy--half, for her hands were still occupied with their holdings.

"Thank you, Chasmine! Perhaps, if it is no trouble to you, I could come by to your dorm room later? I would say that it is surely a splendid setting for meditation, tea drinking, and introspective journeys."

She waved the fingers of her hand while still holding her books and notes, and hurried down the aisle. She'd her own book to find, and her own challenge to overcome!

Chasmine
 
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Chasmine

The Odd One
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"Of course, Kristen. You are welcome to my room any time," Chas said after her, the warmth on her face faintly blooming into an amiable smile. When the much taller initiate disappeared through the stacks, Chas returned to face the day's quarry: the high book shelf.
 
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Kristen Pirian

Pirian's Chosen
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Kristen had been able to sneak in some reading of the tome on the Radiant Church between classes. But with the day's schedule exhausted, and with her skills in subterfuge surely increasing by escaping the open Academy courtyard without being harangued or put on some detail by lingering Proctors, she made it a point to take Chasmine up on her offer. That lightning bolt of inspiration that had come from Delaney's story had been powerful...but fleeting. Just like real lightning. She needed to capture it again! Capture it and bottle it up!

Kristen made her way through the dormitory. Tip-toeing, even whilst orange light from the evening spilled down sterile halls from the scant windows and made everything quite clearly visible. She checked around every corner, nervous that Bull or some other sour-minded Initiate might be there to interfere with their wanton belligerence.

But she arrived at Chasmine's door without incident. She carried the tome in one hand, and knocked with the other.

"Chasmine? This is Kristen. May I come in?"

Chasmine
 

Chasmine

The Odd One
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Kristen would have had to climb many steps to reach Chasmine's dorm. Located at the very tippy-top of the girl's wing, Chas occupied what had once been the grounds keeper's abode. It afforded an exhausting amount of stairs to get there, but a marvelous view and a great deal of privacy as a reward.

At the knock, Chasmine's ghosted, transluscent head popped out through the door, an impish smile on her lightly surprised expression, "Hello Kristen Pirian," she greeted the girl with her airy voice, "you have arrived rather sooner than expected."
 
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Kristen Pirian

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Kristen nearly jumped out of her boots. She never got used to that! Yes, she knew, of course she knew, about Chasmine's peculiar magic but somehow it was as if every time her head hit the pillow the new day reset her explicit knowledge of this and another startling was nocked back into the bow, ready to be loosed like an arrow upon spotting a ghostly glimpse of her.

"Chasmine! H-Hi, there, yes, um...I don't suppose I may invite myself in?"

She tried the door, and wondered quite vividly what might possibly be on the other side. Going into another Initiate's room was exceedingly uncommon, and while Kristen would estimate that most would have nary a thing extra other than what was standard issue at the Academy, she couldn't help but think that Chasmine's room (so far removed as it was) would be of a whole different character.

Chasmine
 
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Chasmine

The Odd One
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"Yes, of course, please come in," Chasmine replied before pulling her head back through the door and into her room. The door opened with a jilted and stuttering whine.

Chasmine's room was about exactly what one would expect from a girl such as herself: eclectic to the point of eccentricity. Though the Dreadlord Acolytes didn't have much in the way of personal belongings, Chas had apparently made a point to fill her room with found items and things. It was the epitome of kitsch cottagecore. There were trinkets and bobbles, many of which were broken, settled about high shelves. Books, books, books, and more books. Handmade things put together from nature. Feathers of all sizes and colors. Rocks - lots of rocks. Candles everywhere.

All the plants. In pots. Not in pots. Seeds. Drying blooms. Cut roots and leaves.

Symbols carved into the wooden wallboards and along the perimeter of her room. Phials and jars filled with collected ingredients, tonics, and oddities. Dead things, too. The skull of a crow sat atop a cork that enclosed a large jaw of its own feathers and petrified feet.

Her bedroom window looked out upon the Old Forest and the graveyard through a thicket of growing plants seeded into a makeshift flowerbox just beyond the panes, and an empty raven's nest sat off to one side.

On the floor, one of the only clear surfaces in the room, Chasmine had drawn a large circle in chalk. Several candles already sat burning along the edge within their own connected but smaller circles. Symbols lined the circumference, several raven feathers were scattered ... or perhaps very purposefully arranged inside along with several small animal bones and a crystal at the center.

"Please do not sit in the chair, Dandy is taking a nap there," she indicated the rather empty looking chair by a desk in the corner. Otherwise, she offered Kristen a pleasant smile, "Tea?"
 
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Kristen Pirian

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Goodness! This looked less like a room (Kristen's own was rather minimalistic by comparison) and more like a...like a...how would she even describe it? A menagerie. Yes, a menagerie. By the Holy Sentinel, how did she even come to acquire all of these knickknacks? Were those pinecones, oh, how quaint and lovely. Were those bones?? Were those glass jars, oh, she adored glass jars. Were those eldritch symbols??

Kristen decided it would be uncharitable to make runaway assumptions. She was Chasmine's honored guest, of course, and such would be the pinnacle of rudeness.

Still, honesty of a sort. "My, Chasmine," the words shuddered a little, she could feel it as they departed her tongue, but it was a faint thing. "This is all...I suppose this sort of setting is essential for a, um...journey of the mind and soul."

Laughter that she hoped was genial, but was probably a trifle nervous.

Kristen paled as Chasmine mentioned "Dandy" and pointed to what was a clearly deserted chair. If Kristen could graduate the Academy with her full powers simply by sitting in that chair, right now, she...would severely have to ponder it.

Kristen sat on the floor, legs crossed, at one end of the circle with all of the candles. "Yes, please, I would love some tea."

Chasmine
 

Chasmine

The Odd One
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Chasmine reached up to pull two mugs down from a set of shelves where they were accompanied by a stuffed gryphon whose beady eyes stared at Kristen with grave intensity. Taking the heating kettle off its hook over the fire, she carefully filled the two mugs with tea and handed an intricately carved wooden mug to Kristen, "Guests get the nice mug." As always.

The other mug, a much older earthenware one, she took for herself, "I'm afraid I ran out of honey some time ago. Proctor Rennou keeps smoking near the apiary and the bees have gone on strike. I tried to tell him they don't like his cigars, but he insists that its good for them."

She joined Kristen on the floor, sitting at the other side of the drawn circle as naturally as a bird on a branch. Legs folded in lotus position, Chas held the mug beneath her chin and took a slow, deep breath, "This is lemon balm and chamomile. Breathing in the scent can help calm the mind ... also, it lets the tea cool so you don't burn your tongue which I consider to be the more important factor here."
 
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