Grasping the Chaos shard, in one hand, and my staff in the other, I focused on the core of the crystal. Flexibility of purpose with versatile joining, a commensurate combination of purposes. I shaped the crystal using my earth magic to be a three-bladed spear point, with a thin pointed base to have a solid foundation in the staff, which I stabbed into the top of the spear. My nature magic opened up the wooden top of the staff to welcome its crown and close around the bottom. The base of the blades connected to the three crystals, swiveling to join in a wickedly sharp point. Almost done. I took the feed of the generator, disconnected it from myself, and stuck it to the golden control ring on the spear. As the raw mana it flowed through the increasingly brightening staff, I put an enchantment of joining and melding through it, to make the spear a whole, not just a machine of many parts, but a spear with one function, to fuck shit up.

  The raw Chaos in the crystals reacted to my enchantment almost joyously. It seemed to want to make the impossible just a bit more within a mortal’s reach, allowing me to do what I wanted to do for less than what it would cost others, just before it finished, I threw my last Hail Mary at it, a spell-matrix copy of bone, and set it in the very core. I sat there, chest heaving as I contemplated the spear. Its grueling construction was over. Beautiful. The grey of the ironwood with diamond flecks through the bulk of the staff was still nothing to compare to the crowning tri-point of death. I could feel the seed of the bone matrix in the core, slowly drawing on the Chaos and mana, assimilating to the combination of materials in the spear. A spear fit for Odin. All it was doing now was soaking up the raw mana provided by the generator. Now I would have a backup if my batteries ever got low in combat. Ten minutes of raw, pure power later, I sensed it was full. I put the generator on low and put the crystal batteries in their slots to charge. Checking the matter to mana function on the enchantment on the generator showed that there was no degradation. That’s a relief to not have to worry about. Maybe tonight I’ll hunt that fucker that was scratching on my door.

  I caught a quick nap on my couch to rest my overtaxed brain, definitely not comfortable in full battle-rattle, but necessary. Sitting up made my back scream at me, the crystal batteries do not provide decent lumbar support. A quick refresh of flesh magic set me to rights and woke me up. I need lights. Noticing that dusk was approaching made me remember what a bonehead I’ve been. Seeing in the dark is badasses, and I’m not there yet. I conjured a pocketful of the flashbang pebbles for later, but took one of them out. Holding it in my hand, I placed a governor spell on it. It would absorb ambient mana, my house provided plenty, and when I said said the keyword “lux”, it would provide a soft white light. Testing it and making a few more was the work of ten minutes. I conjured a couple crystal stands with prongs to hold the light stands and placed them around the house. Took me a few days, but I was getting life back to a semblance of normalcy. Humans need light. We have to have it, and not having it available when the dark comes scratching at our door robs us of our dreams, the very core of what allows us to act upon the possibilities of life. And how to do we sleep peacefully to get to those dreams? With light on demand. I made another handle of the light pebbles and added a gradient to the brightness, so that if I sent out a pulse of mana, they would get significantly bright, say, spotlight level. The shadows fell across my living. Hunting time.


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