Neverstar

by

Avalon Prime

CH1 - Whereabout When I Was

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CH1 - Whereabout When I Was

Many people have wondered at the sensation of heroism, and secretly nursed a desire to take on that mantle. Inflicting guilt on themselves, even as they desire the opportunity... It isn't all it's cracked up to be. 

To find oneself crawling through broken glass, pulling a child out of a half-crushed car. Well, it wasn’t a positive moment. His arms were soaked and bloody, and the accident looked no less grim. Being partially wedged under a semi-trailer wasn't doing the situation any favors. 

The car wasn't doing a lot to prevent its own structural collapse at this point, but even being somewhat cynical, you can't just leave a little girl stuck in a car like this. Even if she did happen to be busier crying than helping herself. Frustration had long since set in.

He pushed himself further under the flipped vehicle, reaching for the tripped little girl within.

"Come on sweetheart, I need your help now. Can you reach up and undo your seatbelt?" The sound of tears and a wet nose were his reply. He repeated his question, trying vainly to reach around the back seat and disconnect it himself. The car's frame sank down another inch, his fingertip barely in contact with the buckle now.

"What about Mommy and Daddy?" She whined plaintively, as he finally managed to grab the buckle. She screamed and thumped into the floor as he released it. Rattled and upset, she scrambled out of the car and hurried to check on her parents.

He was having other problems at the moment, however. He'd just realized that the sinking frame of the wreckage had trapped his arm. To add to his problems, there was a distinctly strong smell of gasoline starting to fill the cabin. 

He'd already had a headache at the beginning of this little problem, and it was only getting worse now.

He heard the distinctive sound of a car door handle being tried. The little girl was trying to get to her parents through the hopelessly crushed door, he could've told her that wouldn't work but he couldn't exactly stop her from his current position.

"Stop it!" He yelled from his awkward position, pinned between the seats and the roof, his body wedged under the trunk of the flipped and wedged car. "Stop trying to-"

SLAM 

The car collapsed, a wet crunch was the final noise he heard.

He didn't even get to know what happened. He wasn't identified. It didn't matter, he was dead. His entire body was numb, and he couldn't feel the outside world anymore. Couldn't experience, or touch anything. The deepest and most conscious sleep he'd ever known. He didn't want to imagine what had happened to him, probably something horrifying, that was generally his type of luck.

Though he didn't yet know it, he was lucky enough to not need to experience the horrors that would've followed had he awakened. A dark and infinite corner of the unknown had taken up residence in his mind, a sensation he found familiar. He'd sensed this once before in his life. When he was coming out of the tail end of a dream. A whispered promise of dreams fulfilled and a threat of death inherent in its composition.

He'd recoiled in fear from this once, and spent many years wondering what it was or if it was. But here again, a second opportunity. And now with apparently nothing to lose. Casually but with conviction, some part of himself brushed against the odd feeling suffusing the corner of his mind.

At that moment, something wild happened in the solid and logical world of reality. His body vanished through a small hole to the Neverstar. Compressed to a point of infinity and vanishing from the local reality, his body was gone forever.

Oddly, the motorcycle parked across the road. The one he arrived on, his steel stallion, vanished as well. So had the jacket he'd left behind. Later on, despite the little girl's insistence, no one could find any savior or hero. Or any evidence of anyone else at all. Aside from her two very, very dead parents inside of a thoroughly crushed vehicle. The company responsible for loading the semi escaped responsibility. 

There was no happy ending for anyone involved.

*         *           *

He'd touched The Black Will, and now he'd no input on where he might end up. The Black Will forces understanding in some ways. It dragged him through the edges of foreign realities, showing him wonders. Alternate places and people, off-track timelines and images, but all at once and stretched all throughout the slowest thought. Not being embodied, it was an incredibly taxing experience.

Accompanied as it was by wild myriad colors and insane lights, it was difficult enough to pay attention to any one thing. But it was also difficult to describe the time it lasted. By the time it was over, he was of the strong opinion that it was long enough. In the best possible words he could use, he'd say he'd been in a tunnel of wild color and light, with windows stretching on into infinity.

Whether he looked before him or ahead, he always had the impression that he'd seen into every window. Like a memory, before it happened, he was flooded with experience as he'd never known before. He'd like to call himself modest, but he went wild with curiosity in the beginning. He peeked at everything he could, once he got over a strange sense of vertigo. 

*

Through the eyes of a child, I watch a great man. His magic is mighty and his name is well known throughout the land, but today his attention is mine and mine alone. I shiver with pride and eager zeal as he lectures me, as he teaches me.

I feel warmth and pride I've never known before.

*

"Remember everything can be broken down into a string, and strings can make anything at all. Time is made of up strings, stretching into the past and into the future. Fate is made up of strings, as it binds and connects us all together. Even your Mana is made out of stings, so turn your mind inwards and begin to seize them."

Nautil Nemes began.

The old man poured a cup of cold, icy water over his head. Despite the oddness of the situation, I am a willing participant in this.

*

He crept carefully and slowly through the alley, approaching the side door of the property to which he'd been tasked. As he reached the door, skulking and sly, his well-attuned senses suddenly gave him the impression that something was very wrong.

He looked back and forth, up and down. Through his eyes were acute and his sight excellent, he could detect nothing. And an alley smelled his the same as any alley.

Frowning, he turned towards the lock. He carefully examined it for triggers or any clues, and when he found nothing he moved onto the door. Eventually certain, the door was trapped.

Using a complex series of weaves in utter silence, the Thief opened a little tiny doorway in reality. The destination, within the room before him.

He grinned as the lock flipped open, the trap designed to trigger only from outside.

*

He cast mighty magics in sequence, dozens of utility spells! Sparks and light flew, a hue of purple and blue filled the room intensely. He laughed wildly as he allowed the magic to flow from him, his personal brand of magic the Icarus Press keeping everything under control. Somatic spells and flowed from him, odd chants and intentions were chanted from his lips.

He wet his dry mouth as his work approached completion. This would be the best yet, this would be better than the best

*

Eventually, he learned to choose. Being quite curious, he spent the most time with the child learning the basics of an Arch Magi's life's work. However he was also naturally drawn to the activities of the thief, he'd always been obsessed with getting into places he wasn't supposed to be when he was young.

Flitting back and forth between them, it slowly became harder and harder to perform these actions. Like something of great weight lay upon his mind, body, or willpower.

He eventually realized that the Black Will was done with him, that he'd essentially been stuck to the wall of a new reality. All the strange new cultures, people, and languages made that apparent enough. But there was more to consider. There were almost like TV screens, and learning from them was difficult. Being shown a thing was different from learning a thing. 

And worse, he was slowing down. Losing 'orbital' velocity.

His current standing problem was that he hadn’t sunk in yet.. This was a bit of a situation for him. Sinking into reality wouldn’t end well for him, as he’d rejoin the standard reincarnation cycle within it. 

He'd peeked into the standard mechanisms of reincarnation in this reality, and he wasn't really with the in-crowd on that process. He realized he'd been stuck in here long enough to puzzle out a language in this.... Reality stream. A discomforting thought, his perspective of time must be incredibly skewed.

That or the time with the Arch Magi and his grandson had done more for him than he'd considered.

 Regardless, he'd witnessed the process of rebirth. It didn't do a lot of good for one's memories, and he was fond of his current self. Especially considering the wild, new possibilities this reality apparently offered him.

However, he wasn't a demon. The idea of possessing someone didn't appeal to him, and he hadn't figured out how to do it anyways. Avoiding the memory wipe would be nice, though he wasn't certain what kind of waves he might make by skipping the cycle.

It seemed like a big deal to a lot of authoritative people, given how much attention the process garnered from other parties. He kept peeking through windows for a long time seeking the perfect moment, before he finally learned how to zero in on the 'current day' in his new host reality.

Despite his eagerness to be physical again, he poured through the local versions of the dialect he'd picked up for a while. He was painting a growing picture of this new world every day, or moment, however you might measure time in this crazy acid trip. He was tempted to make some references about Wonderful Lands at this point.

The myriad of fantastic races was enough to boggle the mind already. Monsters were more disturbing besides, and the existence of magic that accompanied them. He started peeking over as many shoulders as he could, though, by this time, he was running out of capital to be curious. His soul brushed the edge of the stream, causing him to seize in shock.

It was quite painful. Quite. Painful. This went beyond a toothache and straight into, never again, for I shall embrace death first!

His soul recoiled from the edge of the stream like a burned snake, coiling away from the source of the pain. He tore his mind away from the pain and the magical distractions, looking for a solution to his problem more fervently. He was both moving, and not moving inside the stream. Riding a strange state powered by the energy of his former form. And if that energy ran dry, so too would his vacation from reincarnation.

He'd learned an interesting spell called Doorway from watching a Thief in Nigim. Normally whatever incredible distance he'd be considering at this time should be beyond the simple and humble Doorway spell.

But he'd done some brainstorming and sideways research. He’d managed to figure out how to overpower it on the physical essence tagged to his soul in this weird place. So he started looking for a point of insertion, which would generally be a strong burst of life energy. Ideally.  He grimaced when he finally found a decent insertion point. 

It was strange, slightly grim, ancient, and awkwardly positioned. But his luck was terrible, so it'd have to serve. Anymore lingering and he might not be alive to linger. Plus he’d only found situation less hospitable, not more.

He cursed his luck, and lack of time. Making more of this situation would've been helpful, he wasn't certain he had the diplomatic talent required of this landing zone. But he didn't have time to learn anything else. He could only learn from looking over shoulders in this place.

 It was staggering enough that he'd managed to pick up a language, and figure out a spell.

He powered up his experimental magic, tapped into his former life essence. A Doorway opened. It was only a very small, finger width dimensional doorway. This technique was extremely exotic, and used far far less energy to maintain than high-level dimension doors. However, it'd only accepted a certain amount of mass. Thankfully, his soul weighed nothing! 

At least in the physical sense.

 

He passed through his doorway, using the window in question as a catalyst. Touched a several million-year-old dragon egg. 

Resting peacefully in the bottom of a subterranean lake, covered in a light layer of sand. Filled with the potential for life, filled with an overflowing amount of creation magic, but infertile. This egg and its spiritual energy would've haunted the area forever, never to be born.

Unless he touched it.

As his soul and magic inhabited it however, it became active again. With the smallest trace of his original life force following him, his body and mind were hastened to be reborn. 

Over the next few days he grew, comfortably and unconsciously. Nurtured within his artificial womb. A far cry from his first birth, but certainly better than having his memory wiped in his opinion. He might never feel so motivated if he didn't know what was possible here.  

Yes, he lamented everything he lost. His soul ached for all the friends he'd left behind. His heart hurt for the family who'd raised him, broken or not, loving or not. But he was happy his time on Earth, though cut short, had led him somewhere with the possibility of more. 

He couldn't wait to awaken. Inside of his dragon egg, he couldn't help but dream the most vivid of dreams. His dreams lit up the inside of the egg with soft, illusory light, the creation magic catching all of it up as it remade his body over the course of the night.

*     *     *

He had no way of knowing how long he'd been asleep. No way to know how long he'd been cradled in the depths below, with no seasons to measure or shadows to shrink or grow. It could've been minutes, or hours.

Or maybe days...

Or it could've been a thousand years. There was nothing to measure, and no gains to knowing anyway. Especially lacking consciousness as he was, in his dreamlike state, not yet fully formed and with ever more conspiring to occur as he dreamed.

Above him, the mana and spiritual essence of the lake began to thicken. Unbeknownst to its owners, their private retreat was quickly becoming a place of Mists. Where-ever Mana and Spirit conspired to mix thickly enough, Mists would form. Highly dense with energy, they attracted all kinds of Beasts, Monsters, and Spiritual Beings. Having one of these things around could generally become quite nasty.

However, exposure to the Mists was also the quickest way to develop a magical affinity. Even the meanest beast started with nothing. ZIp, zero, nada. It took exposure to the correct environment to provoke a change of a magical nature. 

Dragons, and a few other creatures, generated Mist as part of their gestation process. They couldn't fly or fight properly without magical support, or even grow to their full size. So it was incredibly important that they were exposed to and created their Magical Affinity early.

The resident of the egg was also benefitting from a hoard of knowledge that apparently wasn't genetic. Much of it didn't apply to him. It came from a dragon after all. However, there was an impressive store of magical knowledge that could help him out a little bit. 

Dragon magic was potent and had generally high mana costs. And the spells tended to focus on large, area of effect productions as well. Most of these he wouldn't really be able to put to use, unless he transformed into a dragon. 

Or managed to modify  the area effect and magnitude of the spell.

He had no idea if that was even possible, modifying dragon magic or transforming into a dragon both.

There was a range of enhancement spells and perception spells he had no choice but to try out as well. Apparently dragons were vastly similar to humans, in that their minds were their real primary weapons. Even their supposed dragon breath was a magical ability, a sort of knack.

Generally the first thing they learned how to develop was that knack.

Here however, childhood training took the form of a few dozen enchantments. They suppressed conscious thought as they sank in, making him fall into a difficult and fitful slumber as their effects took hold.

It was around twelve days until he was awake and fully conscious again. Or fully developed, depending on how you wanted to think about it. Due to his intimate knowledge of dragons,  and due to the matriarchal knowledge package left inside of the shell of the egg itself. He'd ended up inheriting a few of their traits into his new body.

It wasn't extreme, as the conscious knowledge came from the tail end of his gestation. Thus instead of having any extreme aspects of the dragonic form, he'd merely inherited a few dozen magical reinforcements to his various organs, tissues, and bones. 

A normal person in this world would potentially refer to this situation as being Dragon Blessed, or maybe Cursed. It didn't matter, it had no effect on his physical structure. Eight heads tall, just under six feet in height. Might've been taller but for the size of the egg restricting him.

 

Boom boom Boom boom Boom boom

 

He twitched as his hearts blazed to life, kicking his body into shivering motion. He hadn't realized he'd been sustained purely upon magic up to this point. He started to feel restrained instead of comfortable, and the Mists over the lake above began to retreat towards its surface. 

Despite the twelve days of Mists, neither Monsters nor Beasts or Spiritual Being made its way to this place. Perhaps due to its remote location. Perhaps due to its masters, or perhaps the span of twelve days was merely too short a time.

But nothing found its way into the vicinity to disturb him, save for whoever might know the lake's location. And for them, it was indeed a novel and interesting experience to see the Mist suddenly start receding into the lake. 

Questions were asked and the conversation in the area started to pick up a bit. The Mists began to rush into the lake, churning up the water as they cut tens of lines through the liquid into the deepest depths of the subterranean lake.

Deep below, he was churning in his shell. 

The universe, this reality, or magic... Something.

Some higher force or lower force, or both. Or everything. 

They were all leveraging magic against him, leveraging potential towards him. Every second the Mist continued to pour in his magical potential would grow, but so too would the compulsion to Name Himself. Naming himself would allow Magic, or… whatever force was acting on him.

It would allow it to fix his position in this place. To plan, plot, and chart for and around him in this new reality.

How much power can you take, before you succumb, before you're satisfied.

Before you submit.

Before you are overwhelmed. How much before you fear yourself.

How much before you wonder at the limits of your humanity?

 How was one to know, save through testing that limit?

*     *     *

Outside of the Subterranean lake, there was a large and imposing Estate. 

Magnificent, the Jewel and Center of the city in which it stood. And Mists were gathering towards it like a flood, arcing over the city and slamming into the magical barriers, wards, and shields protecting the Estate.

The Estate Master eventually ordered them to be lowered, and the course of the Mists flowed to the source of the effect.

Considering the wards would shortly be overloaded, the shields overcharged, and the barriers destroyed otherwise. Well, natural reaction to strange times.

This was an unprecedented level of Mist, almost like every Lair, Dungeon, Keep, Arcanum and Library had been sucked dry and transported to this one place.

The Estate Master eventually paled, as one of his subordinates informed him that all the mist was pouring down the central shaft of the bathhouse into the Noble sector, and from there far beneath the ground through a newly discovered illusory wall.

Unlike his associates, he both knew about the wall and what was down there. As well as who was currently down there. He wasn't normally the type to curse, but he still bit off a few choice Fionen words as he stormed out of the room.

Guards quickly heeled to position, trailing the Estate Master through his holdings as he headed for its depths. He was shocked to realize that the flow into the bathhouse was so great, and so dense. 

At this point, even he wouldn't be able to penetrate it without suffering potentially lethal damage.

Back underground, the few people in the area were starting to panic. They gathered together and started casting a complex water barrier spell, gathering their sacred waters from the pool to protect themselves. 

The incredibly dense Mists poured through the area like a flood.

The water churned like mad as the Mists penetrated deep within. A low roar could now be heard beneath the water and the Mist. It sounded like the suffering and howling of madness, of a man pushed beyond his limits.

And he really was going beyond his limits, the Mists slamming into him in endless waves. They didn't give him power, but carved out more and more innate potential. How much you gained from this process was up to how much you could endure.

But he had no measure by which to compare.

He wasn't certain how long, or short, he should or could hold out in this process. He only knew it would end when he howled out his name. Or that whatever he howled would become his name.

The Mists were becoming violent now, slamming against the egg shell with physical force. They tended to gather around the bottom of the shell, so it was quickly excavated and lifted through the waters. 

Eventually, it pierced the surface and rose high into the air, the Mists battering it about as they poured into it. Several surprised people below shouted and pointed up at the egg, attracting the attention of the whole group. The shell couldn't settle on a color, which confused them, as the color usually gave away the attunement of the Beast or Monster being hatched.

It rapidly shifted across the spectrum before slowly turning white, then rapidly shifting throughout the spectrum again. It pulsed wildly and more Mist rusted into it. The shell had started to slowly dissolve at this point, the Universe apparently deciding it'd had enough of this buffer.  

It wanted to directly assault the being within the egg. Dust flew everywhere, glittering wildly amidst the confusion and adding to the chaos... The egg started cracking, and the cavern filled with the intense pressure of a double heartbeat.

 

Boom boom Boom boom Boom boom

 

Spiritual Presence flooded the room like an ancient wyrm disturbed from its slumber, its horde of children a destroyed and desiccated mess. Several backs in the room turned cold as the cracks widened. The air throughout the room shimmered, hidden Knights revealed to have been hiding throughout the room.

Their Shimmercloaks distorted the air around the Knights, casually bending the light in their vacinity.

A total of ten additional protectors that had been hidden throughout the room, watchful of those taking advantage of the influx of Mist.

The egg burst, the shattered pieces whipping through the room and embedding themselves into the walls, a few pieces stopped dead by the water barrier created by the Mages in the room. Laughter filled the room, originating from the presence in the egg, now being held aloft by the Mist and directly assaulted. The redhead floating in the air was rapidly developing skin to match his shining crown, his eyes glowing green as the Mist continued to infuse his body.

This was the direct, traditional, and normal baptism of the Mist. You just let in as much as you could, and named yourself for the first time. The Egg was a filter and a gift to Dragonkind, and he'd harvested much from it. And now he meant to harvest more.

Having an understanding of what to do with yourself, from the word go, was just so very valuable.

And he needed every hint and advantage he could find.

The Mist continued to suffuse his body, filling up his every corner and expanding them farther and farther. He needed to go to the limit for the type of magic he planned to make his own. He shuddered and screamed, and screamed and screamed and screamed. 

He kept screaming to, until the group below him started shouting helpful advice.

"Just name yourself already! Do you want to die?" A low male voice yelled. One of the Mages.

Another more moderately pitched voice followed up with, "Don't try to be tough! Too much Mist can end up corrupting your nature! You can gain much, and lose everything, you won't even be you!" Another Mage, he could see them stare now.

That was a good point though, he didn't know what the potential limits of this process were. But they might, and they might be looking at the limit right now. Begging him not to overstep that limit.  He coughed as he tried to speak for the first time, cleared his throat and tried again.

"Does it matter what I name myself?" He choked out of his sore, irritated throat.

"Be short and to the point, longer names influence your nature more heavily, shorter ones are easy to defy. Flexibility is good." The First Mage said quickly.

"Don't be too intimidated about choosing a long name though!" The second added.

"Choose something that suits you, don't worry about what anyone else thinks!" This was a woman.

"Just go with your Guts and everything will work out fine!" The last Mage said, a larger brash sounding man.

Taken aback at the unusual deluge of information, he suddenly realized it was moot. The Mist forced you to speak your name, if you went beyond its limits. It wasn't his will or his voice, but it was spoken with him as the origin and clear designation.

"Prime!" The voice Spat, almost like a curse, and a wave of force projected him across the room at high speed. 

He wondered if he as about to die again.

 He slammed into a blue ward, to loud “Uh Oh's” and one “Oh Shit” following him through the air. The wards bent like a trampoline, and then broke like glass. They shattered everywhere. 

With reduced violence, Prime flew through the room, and skipped off the surface of a smaller pool of water before slamming into the surface and coming to a limb spinning stop.

He floated casual and naked, in the new pool of water. Idly wondering what to do, and why the room was warded when he slammed into its entrance. 

He'd barely finished the thought when an impudent finger touched his forehead.

"And just what do you think you're doing, interrupting my bath? You've got insane courage trying to peep on me of all people." A very amused, very feminine, and very teasing voice said.

 

His eye's followed the finger up to the finer, pert, young and proud breasts of the Elf above him. They would've ceased there, were her face not a more beautiful visage than the breasts. She stared at him with pure, sky blue eye's, with forest green emerald pupils. She had a generous and proud nose and a slightly small mouth with beautiful, perfectly shaped lips. 

She was so personally perfect to Prime, that he was immediately annoyed.

"If I was peeping then clearly I'd be peeping, but I was flying so clearly I was flying. And then I was crashing, so then I crashed. Now here I am." He muttered darkly, taking his her less than pleased expression.

Clearly she wasn’t as amused as she sounded.

"Now here you are," She said, "In the middle of my Estate, underground. In a secret area that only a select few know about. Would you care to explain how you got down here?"

Prime coughed, "Um, I was born here?" He tried experimentally.

She returned a wry, exasperated look to him.

"I really was," He objected, "Just ask all those fine folks in the next room. They'll tell you I was born here!" He insisted cheerfully.

She frowned. "Being born here would make you a Monster. Or, something like one." She said, "So I should probably kill you. But I don't like killing if I don't have too, so how about this." 

She tapped her finger on his forehead, and a contract appeared in his mind. It wasn't some grand, convoluted or overcomplicated thing. It essentially just said that he'd serve her, as personal compensation for violating her sanctity as a woman.

He stood up, pretending to consider the situation for a few moments but then just bolted for the door. To hell with this, he wasn't getting tied down as someone's slave the moment he stepped into a new world.

"Wait a second you!" She shouted,

"Sister, what's going-" Another voice began.

Unprepared, Prime bumped into another nude girl who'd apparently been resting next to the entrance. "No!" The voice behind him shouted as he fell on top of her, barely stopping himself from doing any damage. She reached up reflexively and palmed his chest to try to arrest his movement, and her mind slammed into his like a freight train. 

She was so kind. She was kinder than anyone he could've ever known, anyone he would know, so gentle and charming and careful. Fierce when defending her friends but just so curious and loving at heart.

Prime shook his head, snapping himself out of the connection. This girl, the little sister of the vision of beauty, was another little vision of beauty. This one more on the cute side than the vivacious one. 

She was even closer to perfect, he shook his head again, trying to clear it. This many beautiful women, more beautiful than anything he'd even seen or imagined, wasn't fair. It was hard to react or think around these two.

He clamped down on both his shy impulse and his libido, gave them both a curt nod, and booked it for the exit.

But by this point all the Knights were blocking the only earthly path to the exit. Naturally.

"Beast Born in the Depths! Mist being! You shall submit to the authority of Lord Penheart or be destroyed!"

Next to the group of Knights, a group of what Prime assumed to be mages were gathered. Younger mages by the looks, and all Elves. He wondered where in the Universe, and in which Elven Kingdom he'd found himself in.  

Bugger.

Elves were more secretive than Mankind or Beastkin or Monsterfolk, or most other sentient races really. They were quite long-lived, so they tended to value their privacy more. They had so much more time to amass knowledge, art, history, and fortune. 

It naturally made them targets of other jealous people.

Swords and spells both were leveled at him. Looked like the sympathy from the mages was all used up, and they were on board with the whole 'slaughter him and maybe worry later' idea. Prime himself wasn't feeling on board with that line of thought.

"Not going to start feeling very cooperative if you're calling me things like that," Prime muttered, shifting his position slightly. He kept the whole group to his right, and used a gesture to cast nothing with his left hand behind his back. 

Nothing should've been a maneuverability buff. Naturally, it did nothing. Having just had his natural attributes enhanced, he was completely tapped out. He had mana, but it was so little compared to his potential reserves now, that he just didn't have the finesse the grab the 'tiny amount' he had leftover.

"We recommend you surrender, you cannot defeat the Royal Paladins of Raenine!" Another knight shouted.

"Certainly not bare-assed and weaponless, I'll give you that." Prime pointed out, more loudly this time.

"Silence demon beast! None of those who feed on the Mist need weapons made by man!"

"When did you make that assumption?"

Everyone paused.

That most recent entry was the youngest sister. Her voice was light and low, like a song, he'd just noticed. The purple pupils looking out of her emerald eyes were quite striking as well, combined with her stark silver hair she seemed so pure and fragile, but also intense and inquisitive. He broke eye contact with difficulty, feeling a fairly intense urge to leave again.

"I'm sorry my Lady?"

"Why do you assume he feeds on Mist?" She asked, "As far as I've seen this is a standard attunement process, though aided with tools I've never heard of before. I was sure Sister could confirm it, so I wanted to ask her. He made it there before I did though." She said with apparent amusement. 

Unlike Prime, she was now clothed, so much more capable of keeping her bearing now.

It seemed her sister was much less inhibited.

"Anyways," She said, waving her hand dismissively, "Let us keep this discussion civil instead of tense. What with sister wanting to enslave him, and you wanting to kill him, it’s no wonder he's tense and ready to fight or flee."

"Submit!" Another one of the Knights yelled harshly. Prime just cast the guard an annoyed look.

 The guard plopped onto the ground like he'd just seen the most terrifying vision in his life. He was suddenly covered in sweat and breathing heavily. 

The other Knights looked over their fellow curiously, then eyed Prime suspiciously again, beginning to close in on him. The Little Sister again decided to get in the way, placing herself between him and the Knights.

"Again," She said, "Let us go inside and discuss this civilly." She insisted.

"He's neither dragon nor demon, nor denizen of the deep. Let us go discuss this over tea and crette instead of threats and steel." She adopted folded hand posture, and mock submissively added, 

"Please."

This was apparently more than enough to make the Knights feel awkward, and lower their weapons. Which was nice as he didn't have any. 

Would've appreciated some. Shame he didn't get talons or something.

Little Sister then glued herself to his arm, heavily distracting and impairing his thinking organ. "Let us go!" She said, in her determined, cute little song voice.

He sighed.

Good cheer was harder to resist than steel and fire.

 

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