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 1st Interlude: Shadowstep

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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Thu 22 Mar 2018, 11:36 pm

Nick is last in and remains astern, Crossbow pointed toward the treeline.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Thu 22 Mar 2018, 11:38 pm

"May, row!"
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Thu 22 Mar 2018, 11:40 pm

"May row, May row." She springs into position and takes up her oar. She'll pull in time to Marcus' call.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Thu 22 Mar 2018, 11:53 pm

With Marcus and May going as fast as they can, the boat rapidly floats away from Shadowstep.

The squad and the fairies have almost reached the Tempest when Jacob notices something standing on the beach; a small ball of fire, two feet tall at most. It has no limbs or distinctive facial features. It's just there, immobile.

Jacob clenches his mouth and glares at it.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Thu 22 Mar 2018, 11:56 pm

It's well out of range, but Nick keeps it in his sights nonetheless.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 12:03 am

Sam does not look at the elemental on the beach for long. She taps Jacob. "Did everyone make it?"
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 12:07 am

The black-haired fairy stays silent for a long moment. Some of his kin are openly crying now, and they hug the three party members for comfort.

"...No," Jacob replies.

He is still glaring at the Fire Elemental.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 12:13 am

"I'm sorry. We'll do whatever we can to help you and your friends."
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 12:34 am

Jacob gives Samantha a somber nod.

"Thank you," he says.

Finally, the boat reaches the ship and a rope net is thrown to the squad.
____________

The sailors are simultaneously awestruck at the sight of the small winged creatures and perturbed at Marcus Riddle's injuries. The colonel has a quick discussion with Captain Hoelder, during which the fairies gaze at the large crowd of humans, uneasy about the situation they've found themselves in and refusing to let go of the party members. The colonel rejoins the rest of his group and informs them that the small humans will be moved to the largest cabin, which is usually reserved for an officer.

The fairies are offered the best food available on this ship; a few apples, a meat pie and even some chocolate. None of them seems eager to eat, but Jacob asks Gab to feed them while he talks with the squad members. Anne conducts a small medical examination and decides to cast Cure on them.

Once the fairies are taken care of, Anne tells them that she and her colleagues need to talk to Jacob first, but she'll soon be back. This reassures them immensely, and they begin to relax on the bed. Their mood hasn't improved much however.

The white mage joins the rest of the party at the other side of the room. Jacob is looking at his rescuers and waits for their questions.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 12:37 am

"What did it do to me?" - Smirk asks without preamble.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 12:39 am

Jacob looks at Smirk and Nick with pity.

"The Elemental who gave you these powers took control," he explains. "They can do that to all summoners."
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 12:45 am

"Can it do it again?"

Despite the curtness, Smirk's voice is far from detached. Rather, it feels like he's barely holding together. Both Nick and Smirk visibly brace for the answer.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 12:48 am

"It shouldn't, now that I've given you an orb." Jacob rubs his right arm, feeling awkward. "...I don't think I can control you either."
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 12:50 am

Nick and Smirk exhale a shaky breath, but doesn't do all that much to brighten their mood.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 12:51 am

Sam gets a chill as it sinks in. "Deremonda... There are green mages in the ranks of all armed forces in the Archipelago. If they wanted to invade us... But showing their hand now wouldn't make sense, unless some people who would be against this found out about it?"
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 12:51 am

"But vy VVhirlyman? Vut do they hope to accomplish?"
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 12:57 am

"I'm not really sure what they're trying to do," Jacob answers as he lowers his gaze. "But... if they can feel something, I think they're afraid you. Of humanity. I'm not sure what they'll be doing now."
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 1:00 am

"Big monster afraid of May? No one needs do that. Ve just drink wein and sing songs." She takes a drink and offers some to the fairy.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 1:02 am

Jacob looks at the wineskin, approaches it and smells. He immediately frowns and backs away.

"No, thank you," he says.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 1:03 am

"Afraid of us or not, right now, I don't want to think the damage they could do if they decided to strike now. So, who are all of you?"
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 1:11 am

Hearing this question, Jacob looks at his kin with bitter eyes. He tightens his fists and, humiliated, says, "An experiment."

He pauses, holding back painful emotions. With clenched teeth, he calms himself and continues.

"We were born from the fusion of a human and an Elemental of Life. There were a hundred of us at first, until... until the Elementals..."

Tears are forming in his eyes, but he holds them back. The colonel and the white mage are shocked by these revelations, and Anne can't help but caress the fairy's back to comfort him. He seems grateful.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 1:17 am

"I see. What reason could they possibly have for what they did today?"
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 1:20 am

Jacob lowers his gaze.

"We escaped. They tried to stop us."
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 1:25 am

Nick exhales. Smirk grows restless.

"Either Phil changed a lot over the years, or the thing we just fought had nothing to do with me. You're saying it could have taken control of me from anywhere, at any time - across the Archipelago if it felt like it? How did it know what i was doing, can it see what i see too?"

He's trying to keep his agitation in check.
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PostSubject: Re: 1st Interlude: Shadowstep   Fri 23 Mar 2018, 1:38 am

Jacob refocuses on the conversation at hand.

"They can see through the eyes of every green mage they're connected with," he calmly explains. "I don't think they can do it ever again with my orb inside your head."

"What exactly is this orb we're talking about?" Marcus asks.

"It's a... it was supposed to be a container for the Elemental's will. They would send us into the human world and we would... give them to everyone." Jacob's expression darkens. "Every human would be under their control then. But when we were born, we didn't inherit the Elemental's will."
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