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Friv
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31. In Which The Conduit Triumphs

12 Sep 2007, 00:40

I should be sleeping, but work made me not get this done earlier, and it really has to get out of my mind and onto... pixels, I guess, not paper. Regardless.

-----

Serafin stood, carefully avoiding the blade hanging in midair, and then glanced downwards. Below her, she saw herself, pushing to one side to avoid the descending weapon. It was clear to her that she was not going to make it. “You know, that Charm is supposed to block anything.” Her comment came out sounding more moody than she had intended, and she crossed glumly to where her goddess sat. Luna was wearing Serafin’s own face this time, tinted with silver light.

“Oh, it does. According to the rules.” Luna shrugged. “That’s what Isidoros has always done, though. Restructured reality to suit himself. He dislikes perfection.” She snapped her fingers thoughtfully. “How did it go? Ah, yes. ‘It’s better to dream tomorrow than be there’. Suits him to a tee, really.”

Serafin raised an eyebrow. “What does?”

“The Sutra of the Expectant Maiden.” Luna shrugged. “The others never quite got it, and I didn’t feel like sharing. Maybe I should have. Maybe we would have seen it coming.” She sighed and shook her head. “The Sutras have to apply to a Conduit as well as their Primordial for the conjunction to succeed. That Conduit was right in that way – it’s not quite like being an akuma. Much more of a union than those puppets over there.” She gestured calmly towards the two Infernals, each frozen in the midst of preparing to attack their defenseless foes. “We always knew their return was possible. That’s why we distanced ourselves from the actual control of Creation. But they outsmarted us.”

Serafin looked over the Conduit thoughtfully. “Well, not all of the Abyssals still work for their lords, right? If we could gather them –”

“Nope.” Luna dashed Serafin’s hopes with another shrug. “The Deliberative already handed their power over. They can’t just take it back. The Lunars and Sidereals could reverse the edict, since they still hold the balance of power, but you’d need fifty live Sidereals for that. And I don’t think the Conduits will allow that to happen ever again.”

Serafin frowned. “Why in the name of… well, of you… did you set it up that way? Why not a majority of the living Sidereals and Lunars?”

“We didn’t want someone to murder their way to consensus.” At Serafin’s disbelieving snort, Luna laughed. “I know. I recognize the irony.” She paused for a moment. “Anyway, what’s this about ‘we’? I can’t do anything. The Competition binds me. And you can’t do anything, because you’re about to be gutted.”

“Mm.” Serafin nodded after a moment, her moment of amusement vanishing. “There’s no chance, huh? No smart idea to save me?”

“I came to say goodbye, not to give you smart ideas. I couldn’t give you smart ideas. If there was even the slightest chance that my actions could alter your odds, I couldn’t be here.” Luna looked over at the blade. “A Solar could disrupt Isidoros’s power in moments. A Sidereal could avoid it, if they were prepared beforehand – which Nash wasn’t. You could probably stop it if you were in the Wyld, but not here. Not now.” She sighed.

“And that’s it? The Conduits rise up, and Creation falls?” Serafin was incredulous. “You aren’t going to do anything?”

“What could I do? Without Conduits on their side, there’s no way Creation can get out of this.”

“Well, that’s no good! It’s not like we can just walk up to a Primordial and…” Serafin trailed off, and blinked. “A Primordial.”

“Excuse me?” Luna raised an eyebrow?

“The Competition isn’t between the Yozi. It’s between Primordials.”

“Correct. The Neverborn are in on it, too.” Luna smiled sadly. “Of course, they have only four Conduits, instead of the nine they expected. A small victory for our side.”

“What about Gaia?” Luna looked up sharply. Serafin stood, began to pace. “Gaia’s a Primordial. Doesn’t she have a stake? A Conduit?”

“They don’t grow on trees.” Luna looked down. “Like I said…”

“I know, I know. They have to mesh up on some primeval level. What’s Gaia’s scripture?”

“I can’t tell you that.” Serafin looked over to find Luna watching her.

“Why not?”

“It could affect the Competition.”

“I thought I was about to die! How could…” Serafin’s eyes went wide, and her voice went quiet. “oh.”

Luna stood. “Hm. Looks like you’re in the middle of an epiphany. I had better leave, before I inadvertently say something else.” She took a step away, then glanced back over her shoulder, mirroring her Chosen. “Goodbye, Serafin. It was an honour to have you sworn to me. And thank you for the Silver Court.” A sudden, impish smile crossed her features. “They are very dedicated.”

As she left, Serafin felt time starting to pull, and resisted. She did not speak, because there was no need.

Once there was a maiden… who met a thing that lived outside the world, and there was a beauty to it.

She stepped towards her body, looking down the hallway at Alakazar and Gwydion, and she smiled.

It burned with an unholy wrath that could destroy Creation. It hated her as much as it loved her.

It could have been anything. It could have gone either way. The world as it might have been if he had never understood was dark.

Its kiss was blood and perfection, for its teeth were sharp.

She let her mind range free, and she heard the thoughts forming within her. “The Storm has come.”

It offered her power, and with it, hooks to tear at her soul.

Her thoughts blended. “I am the Firmament.”

With care not to burn her fingers, she took it into her life.

It was about healing wounds. About finding the balance, when the world perched on a knife’s edge. The thoughts echoed with her own, her small voice blending with another, a greater, all of Creation singing the final line of the sutra through her mouth.

“Love is what you make of it.”, said she.

Time started. The blade descended with the wrath of the Yozi.

And she caught it, because that is what heroes do.
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Re: 31. In Which The Conduit Triumphs

12 Sep 2007, 00:56

DUDE! Rock!

...And now part of me is wondering if you had this planned out when you created the character in the first place.

My only quibble is that I would have expected the sutra for Craft to be associated with Autochthon.

Edit: On the other hand, given his current state, the sutra for Survival could conceivably apply to Autochthon, as he is trapped in a tomb made from his own body, but won't die until his systems stop running. Which is an interesting inversion, given that Gaia is usually associated with Survival and Autochthon with Craft.

...Although I suppose the Eternal Maiden or the Clay Maiden might fit him better.
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Friv
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Re: 31. In Which The Conduit Triumphs

12 Sep 2007, 01:34

This was indeed why I created Serafin; In Which grew out of my trying to decide who and what should go along with her, and hitting on the Silver Court and loving the concept.

I have written up a complete list of which Sutras I apply to which Primordials over at http://exalted.xi.co.nz/wiki/wiki.pl?Fr ... ziPantheon . In short, I paired them up based on the constellations and connections therein, rather than the literal descriptions of what a given Ability does.

Gaia gets Crafts because it is the constellation of the Peacock - "The Peacock is the constellation of thoughtful breeding and considered partnerships. Procreation, dualities, and necessity are among its correlations." Also, I liked the sutra.

Autochthon was given Investigation, which is The Key - "The Key is the constellation of wisdom discovered through curiousity, and of innovation. Mechanical devices and books are included among its correlations."
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Re: 31. In Which The Conduit Triumphs

12 Sep 2007, 01:53

BrilliantRain wrote:
DUDE! Rock!

...And now part of me is wondering if you had this planned out when you created the character in the first place.

My only quibble is that I would have expected the sutra for Craft to be associated with Autochthon.

Edit: On the other hand, given his current state, the sutra for Survival could conceivably apply to Autochthon, as he is trapped in a tomb made from his own body, but won't die until his systems stop running. Which is an interesting inversion, given that Gaia is usually associated with Survival and Autochthon with Craft.

...Although I suppose the Eternal Maiden or the Clay Maiden might fit him better.


Serafin lives!

That's such a fantastically cool chapter conclusion. Aw man, that's awesome. I literally got goosebumps while reading the Scripture. Literally. Shivers up and down my arms. That's...well, I think that speaks right there to how excellent this was.

Anyway, as I recall, Friv had this neat arrangement of abilities paired up with Primordials. I want to say Autochothon got Investigation and, if you read it ,it really suits him better. After all, part of Gaia is Earth and creating what's there. Autochthoan was the one who made new things.

Edit: And Friv totally ninjaed me. That's okay. It's not only his story, it's his fluff too. :)

Edit Edit: I'd totally do up Indra, the Loom of Fate, on your Wiki as a non-canonical, Friv...but it appears every ability is taken.

Sadness.
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Re: 31. In Which The Conduit Triumphs

12 Sep 2007, 17:16

Friv,

I have only one thing to say about this chapter.

:win:

That is all.
 
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Re: 31. In Which The Conduit Triumphs

14 May 2008, 01:09

The end of this chapter is pure greatness. :twink: I don't see what I can add after that.
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Re: 31. In Which The Conduit Triumphs

14 May 2008, 01:33

Yeah, it always makes me tear up.
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