Tinkering


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Post Mon Mar 03, 2014 11:40 am

Re: Tinkering

Astarte nickered softly as AuraSidra moved to her side to help with the weight. It was nice to let go of one of the stabilizing hands, though she gave a final tweak so the stone would slide away from her friend's wings. She shortened her stride a bit to make up for her younger companion's shorter legs and the adjustments to what they carried. This was certainly a more physically demanding adventure than any she'd undertaken before.

AuraSidra took it all in stride though, her thoughts again ricocheting forward to what they'd do next. Astarte was content to let her plan. She was starting to realize she wasn't much inclined to be a leader, regardless if her age may merit such assumption. It was easier to bend her talents to a design, to find places where she--or her trinkets--could fit, cogs and gears in a greater clockwork. Perhaps that would change in time, but for now following along was amusement enough.

It was a short walk to the lake's edge, give or take the slow pace and delicate adjustments. Astarte paused near the water, kneeling as per AuraSidra's plan. Yes, with some more minor movements, the smooth stone should be off their backs and on to the next step. The fireglow, nervous in its proximity to water, drew deeper into the recesses of the crystal. The light dampened a bit, but it only served to enhance the ethereal glow of the strings from the ceiling and the mysterious shine from the heart of the lake.

"Alright," Astarte mused, looking towards her friend with curious eyes. "What's the plan now?"

She knew her friend did have something in mind, but she wasn't sure yet of the exact dynamics. Regardless, she'd do all she could to make it work.
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Post Wed Mar 05, 2014 1:49 am

Re: Tinkering

The mad spark was still in her eye, but at least she was making an effort not to simply bowl over her new friend. She glanced down as the spark flickered uncertainly, suddenly remembering that it was a spell of Astarte's; it was a marvel to her that the other filly wasn't at the end of her limits with all this magic work. AuraSidra found her respect going up another couple notches; she must be so strong.

The moss had a bright glow by itself, especially when reflected through the crystal; in full sunlight the glow was plainly seen. It was a bio-luminescent light though, and the fireglow had provided a certain sharp clarity that the moss wasn't capable of. Well, it was still providing it; she was just weighing how much it would suck if the thing flickered out while she was up by the ceiling. A diffuse glow, no matter how bright, just wasn't quite the same.

I need to fly up and get some of the string-t'ings the little glow-lights made, she reported, craning her head back and squinting up at the ceiling. It almost looked like stars; almost. That way we can find a way back to shore after we get the thing in the water. But I have another idea first; if I fly across and take the strings and tie them near where the shiny-whatsit is from both ends, we can swim to the other side too.

With that she spread her wings and gave a few experimental flaps. She'd glided before, she'd even managed a bit of a flutter, but climbing up to the ceiling was another matter entirely. And, more to the point, how was she going to gather the strings? She'd thought to spare her friend from calling that 'hand' spell again, but flailing and biting at the things didn't seem like such a great idea. She'd probably be better off sticking with her original plan... But something held her back.

It didn't seem right to keep asking. If she wasn't careful she'd get to be a nuisance, with her inability to properly fly or see in the dark or work any true magic... It'd be like seeing the auroras here for the first time. Back home they were every sort of color, from blues to silvers to purples and greens and reds and golds and everything in between; some even looked like rippling bands where the stars had disappeared, deeper blues and blacks. Here, though... There they were just a sort of green, the same green of her freckle-spots she'd gotten from her Mama, a mirror of the gems. What sort of aurora was just green? She didn't want to disappoint Astarte like that had disappointed her.

Nothing to do but try, then. Gathering herself up she bowed her head, slipped off the lantern (she certainly didn't need the extra weight or counterbalance right now), and launched herself as hard as she could into the air. Flapping as hard and fast as she could she managed to climb a little higher with each down stroke until, finally, she'd reached her goal. And proceeded to do exactly what she'd thought; flailed and bit at the strings the glow-bug-things had dripping from the ceiling, the sticky ones tangling in her wings and mane.

And promptly proceeded to fumble her way into falling.

She'd dropped barely a foot before part of the wall shot out to catch her, the stone suddenly sprouting a dense layer of algae so thick it mimicked moss. Landing with an oomph she flopped onto her side and simply lay there for a minute, catching her breath. Even with the algae it'd been a hard fall; and her wings were screaming at her. Still, with as much as was sticking to her she had plenty of strings, and more than a few lay next to her muzzle where they'd fallen from her mouth.

You really should be more careful, Darroch chided, making her head shoot up with enough force to about send her over the stone ledge, this is the second time I've caught you. You are lucky that I am able to sense the vibrations of flailing fillies as they disturb the air near against stone.

Stone? she asked, blinking at him dazedly.

Yes, stone. My element is nature - all of nature - thus, entire landscapes are at my disposal.

So your esperry-mints-

Experiments.

Ex-per-i-ments worked then?

Father helped with the basics.

Which meant she never had slipped out of his reach. Well, that put a damper on the adventure.

He smirked a bit as he saw her sulk, recognizing the moment it was safe to get her down. With a little effort he got the stone to shift and lengthen, quickly creating a slide that dumped her right at his feet. Seeing her glare up at him just made him smirk wider; it was the perfect touch.

This is Astarte, she said, bouncing to her feet and shaking off hard. She's my new friend and I was getting her the shiny thing in the water acuz she likes strange stuff like it.

Glancing over, Darroch gave a curious tilt of his head and sent a ripple through the ground, making the object scuttle up onto the shore. It was a mirror, a good size and ornate, with delicate stained glass designs twisting about the edges. It was also broken; the pieces that were intact gave a good example of what it could be, but several others were jammed into the frame at odd angles, and there seemed to be a second frame half-way attached; a lid, with a broken hinge.

Framed in silver and gold, and with filigree stained glass, it was nevertheless a compact mirror. That explained the shine; it'd been reflecting the light through the water.

There you go, Astarte, Darroch smiled, giving the filly a polite nod. Did you like exploring with the Sidhe-foal? Maybe you can play again soon.

Wait! I wanna stay!

You always do. But you know the next question.

Do you still wanna play? AuraSidra asked, spinning around and completely forgetting the funny little item. We got the string and the shiny bit from the ceiling, so we can still see what's at the other end of the big water.

If you can swim that far. You are not the best swimmer, little WindStar.

I can do it!

Darroch merely sighed. It wouldn't hurt to let her try; it wasn't like he'd let her drown. But he knew a tuckered out filly when he saw one. Just because he was interrupting her mid-shenanigan didn't mean she wasn't done in.

In the end it was up to Astarte if they continued or not; he'd let her fall asleep on her hooves if that's what it took. Although if they asked, he could just as easily tell them. He could read the landscape after all.
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Post Wed Mar 05, 2014 1:08 pm

Re: Tinkering

Astarte cocked her head as AuraSidra laid out the next part of her plan. It took a little more effort to understand the filly the more excited she became--still, if her friend was restraining herself enough not to go scrambling right to the heart of the matter, the least she could do was make sense of the words. So they were going to go swimming out to the lake, using the strings as landmarks? Fair enough, but--

"Are you sure you should be flying again?" Astarte questioned, even as AuraSidra flapped her wings experimentally. The ache from the spells and bearing the weight of the stones and trinkets wasn't quite easy to ignore; only her dayis' training kept it at bay, and AuraSidra had done as much as she had, even more so on her delicate wings. Still, the filly seemed driven, lost in her own thoughts and determination.

Astarte bit her lip as her friend slipped the lantern off her head and took off. Well, all to do was to trust her, her and the presence she'd felt coming closer since the stone drapery cave. It certainly didn't feel like an enemy regardless of the magical power emanating from it, enough so that AuraSidra perhaps would've sensed it too had she not been so eager in her quest. Astarte paid it only half a mind, watching AuraSidra's shaky ascent to the ceiling. She almost breathed a sigh of relief as the filly reached the proper height, only to have her stomach drop in time with her fall.

A sharp curse left her along with the hands, reaching out as far as she could muster on sudden adrenaline. Not far nor fast enough though, worn as she was. But then, there was the algae to save the day. Thank the gods.

Trembling with the sudden rush, she turned an eye to look at the newcomer, wincing slightly as she called back the hands. So, this was the guardian, that much she could gather from their easy banter. He looked about her age, though more impressive--whether it was interesting architecture of his wings or his easy command of the elements, she couldn't decide. He wore his power more subtly than the Elemental that flitted about Sive's lands though, and that was a bit of a relief. The last thing she wanted was to have raw magic crackling around, setting her teeth on edge.

'She's my new friend and I was getting her the shiny thing in the water acuz she likes strange stuff like it.'

She didn't know why the short sentence made her laugh so, maybe because of her friend's succinct acceptance of her oddity or just the adrenaline finally letting her go. "I'd rather you not risk a plummet regardless of the shiny things, AuraSidra, but thank you for thinking of me."

But it seemed all was not lost in terms of treasure hunting. With an easy tilt of his head the Elemental brought the mirror to the shore. Astarte sighed a little bit inwardly--so easy compared to all their trials just to make it halfway. Regardless, it was as interesting piece, quiet now as it was. Mirrors rarely remained so, though. "Thank you, Darroch, and well met." She trotted around the salvaged treasure, taking in its delicate design and, more importantly, its missing pieces. "It has been an adventure, indeed." She shot a quick but brilliant smile at her young friend.

Ah, but it seemed the exploration may be coming to an end. While AuraSidra's eagerness hadn't taken a hit, her fall only proved that the day was wearing her down. Still, she didn't want to disappoint the young one, and there was not much waiting for her at home, only the quiet melancholy. Well, perhaps--

"I think it's better for us to give the physical trials a rest, AuraSidra." Almost on cue, the fireglow flashed up from its crystal cradle like a firefly, dancing in tight circles around Astarte's body. The heat was a boon to her sore muscles, soothing away the worst of the ache. She stretched experimentally as it danced away, looping a few times over AuraSidra's wings before returning to the lantern. "This cave has waited hundreds of years or more, I'm sure it can wait a little longer."

She took up the lantern and looked quizzically down at both the mirror and stone. Ought she to bring both objects? It might be a bit much. "You know, I can't bend space like you can, so I'll have to carry these home. If you'd like, you could help? As long as it wouldn't take you too far away from your path back."

It would be an easier route than braving the cave, a gentler adventure that AuraSidra might find suitable enough to wind down along. Of course, only if both she and her guardian were up for it.
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Post Wed Mar 05, 2014 7:23 pm

Re: Tinkering

Darroch eyeballed the stone at the same time as AuraSidra, each of them tilting their heads. It was quite amusing, the way they mirrored each other.

She pawed a bit at the shiny outer shell on the stone, watching it flex with her hoof as she tried to chip at it. It was an odd thing, but pretty and malleable; it could be useful. And the shiny-thing, whatever it was, did need some new connecty bits; the shine even matched the sheen on the gold and silver shell. And poking at it with her senses showed that it had some rather unique properties.

While she couldn't place why the stone thing seemed unique, Darroch could. If done right it could absorb magic and energies, or even reflect them. It'd take more time to work with, but there was so much that could be done with it... It may even act as a failsafe mechanism.

'Course we will!

A bit of a walk will not hurt anything.

I could put them in a tree hollow 'til we get there, AuraSidra offered, taking inspiration as Astarte mentioned bending space.

I think it would be better to carry them directly, Windstar. You should not put someone else's belongings in a place they can not access them.

The filly paused for a moment as a look of Ohhhhh crossed over her face, absorbing the new information with mild surprise. She hadn't thought of that at all.

Darroch gave a mild grin and eyed the stone again, contemplating ways to carry it. After a moment, as Astarte grabbed the lantern, he got a flash of inspiration and sprouted a net of sturdy mosses to make his own 'lantern,' if one considered the shimmering properties of the stone. Slipping it over his head he watched the little filly eyeball the mirror; the sharp pieces proved problematic, however beautiful it was.

He grinned again as the little fireglow danced about her wings, watching her give a mild shudder of relief. After a moment she had her own flash of inspiration and, carefully, nosed the lid closed over the compact. As she ducked her head closer she gave a tilt of her head, noticing a surprise detail.

Look! she cried, and motioned with her head, plainly excited. It has an extra thing in this other part - what's it do?

Darroch leaned in and took a look as well, his ears canted curiously. There was a little peg in the 'lid' - a stand for something? Wait... That might explain the pieces of colored glass that didn't seem to fit along the edge of the mirror. There had been a little stained glass figurine at one point.

It looks as if some of the glass attached to the part you found, he said, looking to Astarte to verify. He really didn't know anything about these sorts of contraptions, but it was his best guess.

Neat! AuraSidra squeaked, and after a moment to give her friend time for a peek she shut the lid together and reached back, tucking it under a wing as she folded them firmly to her sides. Seeing the end result, all repaired, would be fascinating.

Darroch led the way back to the log bridge once they were all packed up, shifting the ground to allow them an easy climb after taking one look at the pair. Pulling themselves up with the moss-ropes was a valid option; but he wasn't about to put the tired fillies through that. It did take him a few minutes to get the angles right though; he was fully grown, with only his spindly legs and mid-length mane to indicate lingering coltishness. An easy step for him would be a leap for AuraSidra, however thin he remained.

Lead the way, M'Lady, he said, offering a shallow bow to Astarte once the ground had stopped rippling. He could tell that even with as tired as she was AuraSidra was looking forward to following her friend home, a lingering excitement hovering over her that kept her steps lively enough for each hoof to snap off a smart clop. And walking a filly home resonated with his own sense of chivalry. If nothing else, Astarte had very willing companions.
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Post Mon Mar 10, 2014 10:48 am

Re: Tinkering

Astarte chuckled softly as the two heads moved in unison. It might've been a small motion, but her amma's eyes allowed her to pick up on the subtle--these two must be close indeed. Again bloomed the vague longing for that sort of intimacy, someone to grow up with. Ah well, she had started making friends now, however late that may be, and even a shadow of that closeness felt precious enough. She was glad to have them come along with her, even a bit touched that they'd agreed so readily.

She'd been a bit worried about how to carry everything, but it seemed that Darroch's talents had little that was beyond them. She observed the sprouting of the moss with a curious eye, impressed by the ability to shape tools from the elements around them. How easy her projects could be with a gift like that, but on the other hand, perhaps she'd have to exchange one for the other. Better to have her own then; she couldn’t imagine what she would do without a new puzzle to solve.

Speaking of which, the mirror seemed to be unveiling a little more of itself with every passing moment. Astarte bent her head in time with AuraSidra’s excited question, studying it as Darroch did. “I think you’re probably right,” she mused, nosing the peg gently. “Maybe a figure or a latch.” The material warmed beneath her touch, a very slight spark but silent still. “I suppose I’ll have to wait till it tells me. It’s been here for some time.”

She was happy to see AuraSidra able to move her wings with some degree of ease, enough strength left to carry the mirror. The fireglow hummed happily in its lantern, smug with a task well done. So they were off again, plus a handful of new treasures and one new companion, welcome indeed for his ability to make the journey home a little less strenuous. Astarte was pretty sure that climbing the moss, while possible, would have probably damaged some component of the hand spell. Come to think of it, she’d never pushed it so far before--she was both curious and wary of what new aches tomorrow would bring.

Deep afternoon light them at the lip of the sinkhole, nowhere near as bright as midday but enough that they would need the lantern no longer. Astarte gave a small grin as the fireglow floated up to hover before her nose. “Thank you, little one.”

She bopped it gently and it shot off into the sky, disappearing in a shower of sparks. So dramatic sometimes. She laughed to herself as she tucked the crystal back in the pouch, then looked about to gauge her surroundings. Their path seemed easy enough to follow, and she nodded politely in return to Darroch’s bow. “Certainly, good sir. This way.”

The courtesy felt a little odd on her tongue, in contrast with the relatively easygoing conversation she’d shared with with her younger friend. Eve had started passing on a few ladylike graces here and there, but she’d often found herself speaking casually or little at all. It hadn’t seemed to bother AuraSidra though, and she doubted this colt would judge her any more harshly. Still, lightened by the young filly’s confident step, she set off down their trodden path. An easy pace, for regardless of how bold AuraSidra’s hooves struck the ground, there was a while between where they’d met and where Sive’s lands lay.
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Posting Elemental
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Post Mon Mar 10, 2014 5:08 pm

Re: Tinkering

OOC| I know this is pretty wrapped up, but I had to pop in one more time to say thanks! This has been loads of fun. :) :heart:
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