Talks in the DreamingTria looked between Hermian and Ged, crossing her arms over her chest. "You go first, Hermian. I'm curious to see what happens when someone wakes up."
"I'll do that, though I doubt your motives," He smiled, then closed his eyes, focusing hard to will himself awake from The Dreaming. And Hermian vanished. Tria chuckled as he disappeared, glancing back to Ged. "I haven't the faintest idea what he's talking about."
She moved toward the kite, glancing back at Ged in hope that he would follow her. "So, this was a message...?"
Ged raised his eyebrows at her, smiling slightly as he did so. "Yes. Harlest was asking for help getting out. But Nimbus says that they should be able to on their own...I'll do more research."
"But how was he able to get in contact with us?" Tria took a seat at the base of Matthew's tree, playing with the tail of the kite. "Or you, I suppose. I wasn't around yet."
"That I don't know. But he is Masks' servant, and Masks is the Dreamer, so he must have found a way," the young mage responded, thinking to himself.
"It still doesn't explain where they are now, if Masks lost his Place."
"Rel lost his, too, but has a new one now. Masks is probably in a Skerrie which is of what his Place used to be."
"Possibly," Tria paused for a moment, "but then again, is that the real Masks? The one who is asleep that is, or the one that speaks to us?" The girl fingered her necklace lightly, looking off in concentration. "Who is that Masks anyway?"
"I think that Masks as we have seen him is how he reaches out to us, almost a dream in the real world."
"So he's more like a figment in our minds? Sort of the way Rosetta is a voice?" Tria raised an eyebrow, confused.
"That seems possible, yes." I can't be certain, though."
Tria shook her head. "You counselors are strange creatures!" she laughed quietly, her face becoming more saddened. "What happened tonight? I woke up in tears and I can't help but think it was
because of you. And then when I was here, I heard you crying out. It was just..." She shook her head again, sniffling.
Ged looked somewhat uncomfortable at Tria's apparent emotion. "I...when I first went to that Seeing Place, while attempting to get to the normal one, I saw Mab," he spoke softly.
Tria nodded. "I had sort of guessed that from what I heard..."
"That's really all I know."
"Why was Rel yelling at you to stop whining?"
"I felt terrible sadness. Terrible joy. And then terrible guilt." The young man looks down at the ground, remembering the scene vividly before adding, "He was helping me act, which I did."
"What did you do?"
"Mainly...get over myself. Then I realized we were in a Seeing Place, and was able to focus on that for a bit. But then Mab's ghost reappeared..." the voice became softer once more, "...and all rational thought stopped for all of us. That's why Rel left."
Tria nodded silently, staring at the ground. "So that was the memory you saw. You didn't see anything from your past as Ged?"
"Nothing. None of those memories are as strong. There aren't really any mysteries there, anyway."
Tria sighed sadly, drawing her knees in to her chest. "I see."
Ged walked over the stalks and sat down next to her. "You know the Truth, now. And you have a way to try to find out more."
Tria glanced sideways at him and eventually gave him a small smile. "I know. I suppose it's good knowing that I wasn't just forgotten, even if Nan did lie to me all these years." She leaned to the side, resting her head on Ged's shoulder. "But if someone was after her and scaring her so badly; there's a chance that she's not even around anymore. And if that's the case, then
what's the point in trying? Especially with so much going on right now."
The young mage looked down into Tria's hair, enjoying the scent briefly before speaking. "Did Nan really lie? She certainly didn't seem to know where you came from in that memory. And as for your mother, realize that she was Fae. Which means that she is eternal. You can probably find her, some day. Perhaps just by going to Faerie and traveling to find her, the way Tara found her family."
"She didn't lie about that!" Tria shut her eyes. "When I was little, I asked her how she and Ned found me because all I remembered was wandering around barefoot in the woods when I was four. She told me that Ned found me and took me home. But if I had been with them since I was a baby, and the memory of mine was just another time when I must have wandered off...well, it just doesn't make sense. Why would she hide the truth from me, especially if she's Fae and (like you said) I might be able to
find her one day?"
"Are you certain you're remembering the memory correctly?" Ged raised his eyebrows again, wondering if he and Tria saw the same thing. "As I saw it, the person your mother gave you to raised you, then turned you out on your own. And then Nan found you with other witches."
"I know..." Tria shook her head again, straightening up. "I don't understand why I had to see THAT memory. Perhaps that place really was created to bring up the most intense thing in our minds."
"I'm not sure if it was created that way, I don't think Masks would cause harm like that," the mage responded. "But maybe it does now."
"Do you think that place in particular was Masks's old Place? It seems like it was corrupted by something. From what both Nimbus-es said, it seems like a possible theory." Tria smiles brightly, proud of the idea that came to mind.
Ged shook his head. "No. Nimbus in the memory asked why he created that Skerrie, and also if Rel was already missing it was very late in the First Age." He leaned forward a bit to rest his hands on the ground, propping himself up as he looked over the field of grass and stalks. "So, Masks would have already had a Place. I wouldn't precisely say it was corrupted. Masks seemed sorrowful at the end, there. Maybe
that had impact."
Tria stared at the kite with a deep, slightly frustrated look. "This is all rather confusing. So, the Purging: this happened after yo-after Rosetta did away with the other counselors, right?" The mage nodded as Tria continued. "Well, Masks was put to sleep after things had already begun, but before the general population was aware."
"The battle between Rosetta and Nimbus was during the Purging itself."
"So, that memory was some time before it began. I can only assume that the Truth Nimbus saw was Rosetta putting Rel into Tree." Tria shook her head, her tone a bit incredulous. "And she never told anyone?"
"Rel and I believe that Rosetta thought the other Counselors would be able to stop it. And we hope that reuniting the Counselors now could help fix it. Also, Nimbus has a point, although I'm not
certain how much it showed her. I think she may honestly have not known exactly what happened, only a vague concept."
Tria turned her head quickly, eyes narrowing slightly. "Now that I think of it, you never really explained what you mean by 'fixing' it. You certainly don't mean that after waking up Masks again you can bring back Queen Mab and pretend like this whole thing never happened do you?"
"Well..." the mage got a thoughtful look on his face. "If I could bring back Queen Mab, I would. But no, I don't think that is likely." He smiled up at Tria. "But maybe we can help Faerie in other ways, including solving what is wrong with Bedlam once and for all. Although admittedly, now that I know that that wasn't Rosetta's doing, the chance that I will just be able to fix something he changed seems less likely. But I'm not giving up hope, yet."
"It wasn't?" Tria gave him a confused look. "I thought Bedlam opened because of Rosetta's deal backfiring or whatever."
"That was my assumption, yes. I'm less certain about it now. Although, admittedly, because of the things the Mysts are covering there's still a chance of that. But it's beginning to
seem less likely," replied the young man.
Tria's expression softened slightly as she placed her hand lightly on Ged's arm. "You know, I'm surprised. I would think that even if this wasn't Rosetta's doing, you would still try to solve
it all on your own, inevitably leading to a whole mess of trouble that you needn't get yourself involved in." The girl smiled lightly. "Good on ya, Mage."
Ged chuckled, almost imperceptibly relaxing when another thought occurred to him. "Oh! I can tell you now what the 'nothing' was while Nimbus was there."
"Ah yes, please do." Tria kept the smile as she started playing with her hair, trying to wring out some of the rainwater that still clung to her. Ged noticed this and tittered. "You know, you could just think 'dry'. But anyway, I was wondering if I was about to get the proof that Rosetta's Place was the Mysts--"
"I could, but then I couldn't do this," she said softly under his voice. And with a flick of the wrist, Tria sent some water onto Ged.
"--Rosetta in my head doesn't seem to know, but it would explain- Hey!" Startled, he stared at Tria. She only giggled, looking at Ged with an innocent expression. "What? I was just drying off!" She batted her eyes, doing a horrible job of concealing a grin.
After a moment, Ged shook his face to get the water off, then continues with his own small smile. "It would explain why Nimbus was looking there. If she knew Rosetta was involved, she could have looked in."
Flirting achieved, Tria nodded at Ged's words to show she was following along, all the while thinking herself 'dry'. "Well, how do you know that she was going to look into the Mysts? In her memory, she could have been looking anywhere. I didn't see any fog at least."
"I know she looked into the Mysts because that's where she found me. And we basically spent the rest of the time until we discovered for sure that Rel was in Tree together, I don't think she had time to go into the Dreaming."
"I see..." Tria paused, looking herself over with a bit of curiosity to find she was as he said: completely dry in less than a minute. "Well, it definitely helps the case, except for the fact that Masks is the most ambiguous creature in the world. He may have been telling Nimbus to look into the Mysts because it was full of the Truth, not because it was Rosetta's place.'
"I don't think Masks ever told her to look into the Mysts, I think that was either because the Queen asked her to or because she knew Rosetta was involved and it was his Place. But either way, I didn't find out this time. Oh well."
Tria shrugged, leaning back against the tree trunk and shutting her eyes. "I wish I could say that we have plenty of time to figure it out, but I keep remembering what you told me about the
Solstice being in less than two days and I think we really should try to do SOMETHING. Ever since I learned about this whole Luna thing, I've been much more attuned to the world and the moon cycles and magic and everything. Not sure why, though."
Ged chuckled, but a bit darkly, causing Tria re-open her eyes. "Oh, don't worry about that," his voice took on a bit of a slight sneer. "We took care of that particular problem. With a fire lion, pillars of salt, and then with four people against an army."
"That was a bit disturbing. Are you sure you're alright?"
"Sorry!" the young man quickly apologized, but the smile remained. "It's just a dark thing to be proud of, killing that many people. But believe me, the ritual they were going to do on the Solstice is the one we disrupted by taking Xanas back. Either their ritual was going to take three days to complete, or because time is weird in Fae we actually saw them during the Solstice."
"As long as that's all." She closed her eyes once more. "I still feel like doing something. Anything." Tria shook her head. "Maybe I'm just trying to make up for running away yesterday."
"You didn't run away!" the mage chastised her. "You were Sent away, and that was my fault. Believe me, if anyone had argued too hard I had the ability to force them out."
Looked sad for a moment before laying her hand on his, Tria opened her eyes. "Ged... come now, don't say things like it was your fault. You were right about us needing to get out of there. I'm sure I would
have done much more harm than good had I stayed. Willpower can only get you so far in the real world. And as for the others? Well, they would have just kept you distracted by asking for more details. You didn't need that right then, and the rest just had to trust you, like Tara did... And like I do."
He stared at their hands. "It's true, the things I said may have been correct, but I still don't like that I said them. Or that since I was channeling Rosetta so much I was able to convince everyone so easily."
"It wasn't because of Rosetta that you convinced me!" said Tria emphatically. "I had my reasons."
"And as for how far willpower can get you: remember the plane we're dealing with."
The sad look melted away to another smile, showing yet again just how fast a moon child could change. "True. Fighting in Rel's Grove is a bit different from other places. But I still don't think you should worry yourself over how you were able to convince the others. Tara knew that she had to get Xanas out, Valerie was all for leaving right off the bat, and Hermian came back anyway. The others, well, they weren't
exactly easy to make leave if you recall. And I, well..." Tria paused to collect her words, but the pink blush creeping into cheeks revealed a bit more stress. Ged noticed, and mentioned she didn't have to tell him anything if she didn't want to, but the blonde shook her head from side to side. "No, it's fine. Besides, I'm trying that honesty thing remember? I just knew that if I stayed I would get too
caught up in making sure you didn't get yourself killed and I would have become too much of a hindrance. Besides, after what happened with those bandits last week, I knew I wasn't ready to fight again just
Tria looked away, but kept the hand there. Ged processed her words quickly, making his own judgement. "I see. Your willpower impresses me. I don't know if I'd have been able to do the same, leave because I thought that the way I would try to help would mean I would get in the way."
"I usually wouldn't be able to either," admitted Tria. "But sometimes there are more important things in the world than proving your worth."
Ged nodded, and stood up to stretch. "Not to change the subject too much, but just how did you end up at Nan's? Did you go there from Faerie? And do you know where Tara and the others ended up?"
Tria blinked. "Oh!... I just ended up there. I don't know if I went through Faerie or not, but I didn't see the others. I can only assume that they all went somewhere safe. I just wrote it all off to another one of those strange things that happens in Rel's grove. Though how did Hermian get back?" asked Tria, fidgeting with her necklace and leaning against the tree trunk once more. "I got
a letter from him today saying he was at the grove. I thought he was taking off for the North."
"He was heading North, but then apparently Luna spoke to him and asked him to return. I don't know why, but since it was her work that was helping to keep the Grove protected, through Kell, I trusted
her to have a good reason."
Tria raised an eyebrow. "I don't know about that. Hermian is in that same category as Baeldor and Mahki in my mind. A little too eager for action and information for my comfort. I wouldn't put it past him to have been lying."
"Remember what I said about forcing people to leave? I'm pretty sure that everyone I asked is actually more or less banned for a few days. It should wear off by Sunday, but don't worry about that; since Hermian was able to return he must have had extra help."
"I know Hermian much better than Baledor, and slightly better than Mahki, I'd say. I trust him. You just haven't been around much when he was. He's similar to me in a number of ways. Heh, even including looking around, seeing that Rel is missing, and deciding to magically talk to Tree. Almost exactly the same train of thought I had..."
Tria shrugged. "I suppose. I'm just a bit paranoid these days I guess. I only trust a very small amount of people. At this point, I don't even know if I trust myself."
"I know the feeling. It could be said, in fact, that Hermian is the reason all this happened. Not in a bad way, though."
"What?" Surprise crossed her face. "How so?"
"We met in the dream where I got this mark," Ged said as he traced the line on his left wrist with is fingers. "And then again at the KoEF
questing. I recognized him and his group and realized that they didn't know what they were getting into with the Bedlam stuff that was going around. They're from the North, where Fae is much less well-known. He expressed an interest in Fae, so after the Black & White I told Hermian everything I knew, at that point, about Fae. After I finished I spent the rest of the day thinking about what I had told him, the things I knew, and the questions I still had. That night I seanced the Dreaming in order to start learning."
Tria nodded slowly. "And that's when all this started? I don't think you ever told me about seancing the Dreaming."
He gave a long pause. "By the Dreaming, I meant to say 'The Mysts'. My apologies, I'm really tired."
"Ah, I see. Though now that you mention it, I wonder what would happen if you seanced this place..."
"That's a very good question. I don't think anything would happen, since it's a place not a being. On the other hand, maybe something powerful inside would answer. and that kind of frightens me; not everything here is friendly."
"I would assume not. Otherwise, we wouldn't have to deal with nightmares, now would we?" Tria shuddered. "When I looked in on that scene, I was afraid for a bit that you were in one of those. Graveyards, rain, and figures hunched over are generally not signs of a good dream. I was scared that you wouldn't be able to get
out, but then I saw Rel disappear and I was slightly less worried. Slightly."
"I don't really know how I got there. I didn't have much time to be worried, though, because then Mab was
there. . ." he quieted down for a moment, eyes watering up. ". . .but I'm not dwelling on that, now."
"You were trying to get to where I was, right?"
"Huh, strange. I got there right off." Tria looked down at her feet, shrugging again. "Where did that mirror come from?"
"Didn't you see? Masks made it as part of the Skerrie."
"Oh...that was the same one then? I didn't know if it was that one or if it was his own mirror!" she chuckled. "Not terribly observant tonight I suppose.
Terribly convenient that we were both able to see each other though. I wasn't expecting you to be somewhere that I could get to so easily. How did that work, anyway? All I remember is thinking how close you were; how if I just reached out I could probably even just touch you, and then it just. . .worked."
Ged mimicked Tria's shrugging. "I don't have any idea. If Masks made it, though, maybe it tries to help anyone who uses it, even if it now
causes the memories too."
"Or maybe these things can just happen in the Dreaming," replied Tria. "Though I wouldn't want to pull someone out into the fiery Seeing Place. Getting soaked is bad enough."
Ged shuddered at that.
Tria chuckled. "What? You don't want to get an instant tan?"
Tria smiled. "I'm surprised you got to sleep tonight, Ged. I would think you'd be up all night, preparing for another Blackstar assault. That or worried sick about Tara."
"Actually...I was kind of up all night after the battle, talking with Rosetta. I know a ton more runes now."
"Do you have them all? As of last time I checked, there weren't terribly many left to be found out."
Ged didn't answer her question, talking over her. "Also, he showed me how Nimbus appeared in his/her place. That was... Well, have you ever heard the word dominatrix?"
Tria blinked. "You have to be kidding me."
"Remember, whenever one of us entered another's Place, we took on some of the appearance that would fit for them. I saw Nimbus become much more wild when she was in Rel's Grove. So, considering what you know of Rosetta..."
"Oh no." Tria blushed, rubbing at her eyes. "Bad images, bad images."
"Yeah, I'm just glad that I was thinking about other things when we saw her tonight."
"Oh man, and she's the queen. I--" Tria sighed. "Is bursting into uncontrollable laughter at the sight of the Queen of Fae an offense punishable by death?"
No, but it should be, thought the unseen individual, watching the entire proceedings.
"Heh, Faeries like laughter, so I wouldn't worry," Ged said as he stretched.
"That's good." Tria smiles. "So what new runes have you learned? Can you manipulate the very fabrics of reality yet?
Once more, Ged skipped over her question. "She was apparently pretty unhappy about it, though. And Rosetta was unhappy he couldn't make her sword into a whip. Apparently they reached a compromise with Cuchulain, and she got a chain whip..." He caught Tria's stare. "Heh, I'm coming closer. I got a bunch more runes, too, and was able to learn the runes and meanings for some of the things Rosetta did."
"Like what? Have you learned the rest of the ones that were already in your journal?"
"Not yet, only about 2/3 of them. Rosetta was very forthcoming, he just kept asking which other ones I had questions about. The only reason I didn't get all of them is that I was getting too tired to go on."
"Huh, strangely accommodating of him. No...making you turn yourself into strange creatures or anything?"
"Actually, he taught me how to use the Gift word to give new talents. I let myself sing far better than I ever have before. He also taught me the Grow and Shrink words. Mentioned that he and Rel enjoyed playing with them. I used them to make my pillow the size of a mattress and then shrink so I was on an
enormous poofy bed."
"Aww, I would have liked to hear your singing." She grinned proudly. "You may have been almost as good as I am."
Ged smiled at that. "Oh, I wouldn't go that far."
Tria blushed. "What can I say? It's in my blood." She cleared her throat and then looked up at him quickly. "Oh, I just remembered something. Did you see the spell that I wrote down in your journal?"
"Which spell? The warding one the Black Stars used on my magic?"
"No, not that one. There was one I wrote in your list of experiments, one that was just the runes not translated."
"Show me." Ged pulled his spellbook out of his pouch. On the rune pages, the second page was now mostly filled in instead of being mostly empty, the third, under the Counselors, had several more runes filled in than before, and after the 'summon using the item, area, and creature', there was a page with the words used by Rel and then a list of new runes.
"There, underneath the Absorb+Self spell. You didn't use that one, did you?"
"Bankorok Matsu, me, Santek. No, why?"
"Well...it's, it's not done. Don't use it yet. It's just something odd I'm playing around with. Just in case."
Also can't use four-points. If you use even numbers when casting, except for the largest one, Paradox is generated and you can hurt the Mage. ...you'll learn this later, I'm sure, thought the entity.
"I see. I'll remember that," replied Ged to Tria's words. Tria nodded as she skimmed the runes that were listed, eyes widening. "Wow..."
Ged watched her, then yawned. "I suppose we should probably think about waking up, eventually."
Tria glanced up from the book. "What? Oh...that's right. We're asleep aren't we?" She shakes her head. "I'm getting myself all confused now."
"Heh. So, see you tomorrow?"
Tria nodded, standing up and dusting herself off. "I should get there by sundown I expect. Try not to do anything that will keep you busy all of tomorrow, alright? No more blowing up the grove."
"Heh, I've had enough of that for quite a while. And there shouldn't be much of anything to keep me busy, with Rel and Tree again we could hold off anything, so I think we can spend the day resting."
"Good." Tria held out her hand to pull Ged up. "Oh, I sent you a letter, should be there by now. I suppose it's a bit superfluous at this point, but it's good for a laugh."
Ged accepted the help as he stood to his feet. "Yes, well, we can never really know when we'll get a chance to actually talk instead of sending letters. Although, I think one of the runes I learned might let me touch someone's mind so that they can talk at any distance, but that's an experiment for another time."
"Indeed. Especially since I'm sure I know who Rosetta will want to test it on." She smiled, wrapping her arms around his neck and giving him a light hug. "I don't need to start hearing voices in my head while I'm on the road."
Ged hugged her back, slightly, insecurity seeping in. "That can certainly be disconcerting. You want to wake up first?"
"Sure, considering I'm not as experienced with it as you." She pulled away slightly, smiling. "Take care." She kissed him on the cheek quickly before waving and willing herself awake.
As Ged stood there with his thoughts in the Dreaming, the unseen entity sighed. "You can't hear me at all, but just so you know... you're not the only one. I know you think you are, but...oh, what's the use." The being jammed its hands in its pockets, moving away across the field and towards the edge of Matthew's Place.
As it walked, its appearance became more pronounced and less hidden by the light. A small cap, drab clothing of grays, blacks, and whites and plums swished as he walked, touched by the tall grass. He was an elf it seemed, the ears betrayed him, and yet the years showed on his face as well. And then suddenly the ear tips were gone as he halted his stride in front of an actual elf, teeming with power and arrogance, with a crafty look to his enormous build. He carried a long sword, draped in black leaves and white taffeta. The clothing was of the finest velvet and leather, all in black and dark greens. His hair was long, swept to one side by the breeze here, and the markings on his face were more for show than for a badge of office.
"So. You've met him. You've seen him."
The man scuffed his boot into the ground, silent for a few seconds, then responded quietly, "And I will take the job."
"Excellent! You realize that you are pretty much our 'average' from here on out. I don't expect you to make it, but you should study up and go through the whole rigamarole they do, just in case." He stood up from the stump he was sitting on, a full two heads taller than the other man.
Looking up, he asked, "My lord, I don't have any ties to Rosetta, do I? Because that would be a most awkward thing to go through if you say I must experience what they experience."
To this, the elf threw back his head and laughed. It was not a nice laugh. He frowned as the elf continued for some time.
"Oh! Ha-ha! Oh... heh, no, young Aven. No, you are not even remotely related!" He grinned, watching Aven squirm under his gaze. "You are a Peon in the Unseelie Court, however, which means you serve ME. You're a Changeling, are you not?"
"Then do I as I tell you. Choose Mage as your Primary when you find The Story-Teller. The Philosopher, The Entertainer, or the Dreamer: whatever Sky & Space is called these days, you must choose that for your Secondary."
"And whom am I opposing?"
"I don't really care." The sword became a staff as the elf began to walk away, and Aven followed. "You are to watch all the Path-walkers as you can-"
"All of them?!" exclaimed Aven incredulously, but the elf kept speaking. "-and report on how they are doing to myself and to the Queen on a seasonal basis. The enemy is moving fast, and these people think they have all the time in the world."
"Excuse the pertinence, my lord Domino," Aven asked quietly, "but as beings of Fae, don't we have all the time as well?"
To this, the one addressed as Domino lost his smile, and the mouth set into a grim line. "No, Aven. No, we do not."
There was silence between the two men for a good long while. Off in the distance, a bird cawed. Finally, Aven spoke. "I'll look into this Masks and the others paired with him, first. I'll use the Dreaming, the Runes, everything I can, to watch from gatherings, dreams, scrying, whatever it takes. There is a piece here that possibly could save us all a lot of hardship, I believe; and since they're all just learning now, maybe by the time the Battles take place, we'll be ready."
The grim line turned into a frown. "I wish I shared your hope."
(December 20th, 1008 - Yes, that was Duke Domino. This was the thing that had me choose. Yes, I had already been paid, but the Duke saw my nervousness, and taught me the ways through them to watch, to observe, and to make good use of my Changeling nature to blend in at gatherings. This was a good way to end this year and start the next. - Aven)
Created by Janna Oakfellow-Pushee at 08-15-11 11:51 AM
Last Modified by Janna Oakfellow-Pushee at 08-15-11 11:54 AM