Alvah walks the pattern

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Sitting among the clutter of a back section of the library, Arlo has been laying out spell sheets, explaining them. Alvah is interested but Arlo seems particularly distracted and the run this morning was particularly grueling. Arlo explains, "Just to be clear, I'm not teaching you sorcery at the moment. Just laying out the details and showing a few spell examples. There is far more to this and you may want a shadow with a fast time rate just to do the reading! "
As he talks Random walks into the the angled nook among the stacks of the library.
"Well, teaching magic in the middle of the magic section? Isn't that a little cute?"
Arlo says, “I told you. This is the Magic section for magic that people made up. They are here because the fake magic is workable magic in a tiny number of realms.. Many of which get eaten up by overpowerful magic of shadow.. Hell, most of these are romance novels where people do sex magic and crystal magic, and faith healing....Don't get me going Random....”
Random laughs, looks to Alvah, “Sometime ask him about women laying in ponds distributing swords as a basis for government. Its hilarious.”
“Is there something I can do for you, my liege?”
“Delwin has given me his opinion. She should go back to the Dresdenverse she came from and study magic under him for 10 years before walking the pattern. Then she would walk his pattern first. He plans to speak to her in about 15 minutes. I had Margot distract him. ”
Arlo says, “You have my opinion as well. “
Random nods, “Yes. Delwin is overprotective and unrealistic. I think you also said he's an ass”
Arlo points a finger, “You added the last part. I was only thinking that. In my opinion she is no crushing danger to Amber. She is untrained, young, and will break a lot of dishes from here to Chaos but that makes her no different then Donovan, Visally, Macsen, Martin, Tesara, Carissa, or a half dozen other Amberites we let walk. I found no direct connection to destructive forces, such as Lark or Geryon. He most dangerous connection is an appreciation for Fisk, same as her father. Let her walk. Then she can decide who will train her in sorcery.”
He says, “But she should train in sorcery?”
Arlo nods, “Yes sir. She has ample psychic armamentarium. It will manifest in uncontrolled ways, as it did her first time, and she needs to control it. Give her the pattern imprint and an instructor who wants to train her, not keep her safe. That's my opinion.”
Random looks at Alvah. “What do you think of all this? Ready to do a decade back home before coming back here again? Or are you willing to piss off your father to get the imprint?”
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah looks shocked and then angry hearing her fathers decision. She then stands up and smiles defiantly
"Well i would be breaking with family tradition if i did not piss off my father with big decisions. "
She then frowns at Arlo
"Hey Fisk kind of raised me and thaught me a great deal. Ofcourse i appreciate and respect him. But that is no danger to Amber."
She then nods
"So uhm sure lets get this done then." Alvah looks at Cicero.
"Don't think he can come with right?"
Alvah looks a bit more serious to king Random
"And what I think of all this can be described in lots of colorful language, that would just be a waste of time casue Dame Margot is fantastic but my father is a pain in the rear and stubborn."
Michael James Watson
Random smiles, "Ok then, lets take it by the numbers. First, I am not Oberon and I am not your father. But...I am King of Amber and its my pattern down stairs. I also have a proprietary interest in all the others. And I have an interest in you. It may be a thousand years from now that you are crucial to some unforseen nightmare's resolution but i like to plan ahead. If you want to piss off your father that is your business. But don't piss me off. Second, Fisk. He is charming, and deadly, and i know why he and Delwin are friends. He and I have an agreement. I'll let him explain that to you but know ahead of time i am serious about it. Finally, I assign an Elite to every young Amberite. Its not their job to spy on you for me. Its their job to save you if you need saving, help you when you need help, and fill you in about things you may not know. And in an emergency they can transport to the Lower Ward courtyard where trama mages can fix almost everything long enough for us to get you to a Kolto tank at Vulsara. I am going to hold the snake, and when you get to wherever you have the pattern send you, call me by trump, and i will pass through your elite and your snake. Deal?"
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah nods as the first point is made.
"Got it not pissing you off, your majesty. And ofcourse i only do this so i have good reason to stay and even my dad wants me to serve Amber."
Listening to the second point she shrugs
"Understood, your majesty. He has been my mentor for a time and i actually do listen to him."
Alvah nods
"Yes understood, trump you, Cicero. Cause he has a name. "Alvah says with a grin
"And the elite will join me. So uhm where do i get a trump of you, king Random? And where should i go via pattern. Earlier the idea was my brother. Still go with that plan? "
Michael James Watson
Random hands a tight leather box over, "Thats a trump deck. Currently 100 place cards, a huge collection of royals faces, and 56 playing cards of 4 suits; Cups, coins, swords and staves. Going to Vulsara isn't a bad idea. Vance is King there and its a pretty safe place all things considered. From there, remember. Fantalin for a year sometime in the next 5 years Amber time. oh, and Margot says its name is 'He who slides in the woods and curls on the wrist of the warm arm. But it all sounds like hissing to me. Now, lets take a walk."
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah takes the leather box and looks appreciative to it.
"Thank you, your majesty."
She keeps the box close sees if it fits in her awesome jacket pocket.
Alvah inhales deeply
"Vulsara, king Vance. Got it. "
She then waves her hand back and forth
"Yes yes year of Fantalin i promised and i'll do it. And guess that will not be my only study."
She looks at Cicero
"Sorry my friend maybe i should ask Flora to teach me to understand you. "
Alvah starts walking after king Random. Feeling a certain sense of urge, knowing her father he might be on to things soon enough.
Michael James Watson
Walking down the stairs takes a short time to get down to the prison level takes a little time but Dwynwen and Satura are waiting when Random, Arlo, and Alvah arrive. The mood is somber, almost funerary somehow.
Random stops the decent on the first level below the prison administrative section and takes the group off on a side passage away from the stair leading further down. Dwyn looks surprised, Satura doesn't know the difference and Random and Arlo seem similarly serious. After a couple turns, passing well maintained, utilitarian cells that appear fairly modern in apperance for a castle Arlo breaks the silence.
“Are you sure about this?”
Random says, “we have been over this. I know your view. I am”
Arlo shrugs.
After a few more turns the groups sees a small group at the end of a row. Sgt Darcy is there, with another rather formal looking man in a dark coat and a large hat. He looks like a roguish fop.
He steps forward, “Majesty, I would like to renew my objection to this. Its not appropriate. I can not assure that there won't be reprisals.”
Random says, “By Margot's Teats, Wyndham, you have made that clear. If you or your boys want to do something about it I will take their punishment under advisement. Darcy, glad to see you.”
Sgt Darcy bows his head, “Majesty, How can I be of service?”
Random waves for Darcy to bide and stops the group in front of a cell. A young woman in a green prison jumpsuit comes to the bars.
Random says, “30 days this time.”
She says, “Worth twice the time.”
He says, “Next time won't be 30 days. I'll send you off to some posting that will taxi your ability to make trouble. Maybe the Tazilwere Embassy. Imagine a whole world like Haris Tazil.”
She nods, “Yes sir. Grim to the border of boring.”
The door opens and she steps out. A guard steps up with a backpack, and a sword belt with a collection of knives.
“Lady Alvah of Amber, this is Sancha Do Helech. They call her Spatchi. She will be your Elite.”
The woman looks Alvah over with a smile.
“A pleasure to make your acquaintance.”
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah gets a bit nervous from the grim mood but she just follows the group. Trusting they know what they are doing.
She waves to Darcy and listens to the exchange between prisoner and king Random.
Being introduced Alvah steps forward.
"Pleasure to meet you as well. How do you prefer i call you? Sancha or Spatchi?"
Alvah then looks behind her as if she expects her father to follow she then turns and asks
"What was worth twice your sentence? Just curious with who i am going to hang out for a bit."
Michael James Watson
she shrugs, but Alvah notices a tiny gesture Fisk taught her, Thieves Kant, that says "later". "Call me, Spatchi."
Random turns to Darcy. "Sergeant Darcy, your Elite Blade please."
Darcy looks surpised but passes a knife to the king. Holding the handke, blade out, the blade grows to a longsword. The shrinks to the knife and he sheaths it. Handing it to Dsrcy he says," Luitenant Darcy, keep up the good work." Arlo smile and shakes his hand.
Random starts heading down again
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah notices it but doesn't react.
She only says
"Spatchi it is then. And i am just Alvah. "
Seeing the exchange of blades she raises an eyebrow but says nothing.
Quickly she follows king Random again. As they go further down Alvah feels a healthy dose of tension and excitement.
Michael James Watson
Coming to the seventh door, a guard opens it. As Random passes he says, "Thanks Roger. All quiet?"
Sgt Roger. "No sir, but the problem is yours not mine."
Entering the group sees Fiona standing by the pattern in the common role of Pattern Guard.
On the far side is Bleys, sitting on a bench with ankles crossed and a tankard in his hand is Bleys.
Near Fiona, arms tightly crossed and face scowling in anger is Delwin.
Random hhrmmphs then says, "Bleys, why are you here? "
Bleys says, "This will be cheaper then theater tickets and the show will be funnier then Cats."
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah looking past Random she looks at the scene. At that point her anger just grows. Her fists clench and she steps forward. Standing on a decent distance of her father, because she is not crazy and respects his power.
"Dad, WHAT THE FUCK?. So you figured now what? You want to stop me from walking the pattern? Do you can keep me in a freaking cage for at least 10 years?"
If looks could kill she would be shooting daggers.
"So are you trying the absolute opposite of what you did to Vance? You drilled him and overprotect me."
She then glares at Bleys "you have your own damn theater to watch the drama. " she takes a step closer towards her father and the pattern. "Just let me do this. You can't keep me away from this stuff."
Michael James Watson
Bleys says softly, chuckling,"Yes but in my Theater i have to pay the actors"
Delwin says, "Don't do this.. You need more training. More preparation.. This will set you on a path to great pain and failure. Let me finish training you; actually training you this time. Sorcery, Conjuration, Trump..When you walk the pattern in Talgwir you will be a mistress of powers; trained, formidable.. not petulant and self-destructive. You are setting yourself up to make yourself look like my kitchen covered in brownies"
Bleys says, "Brownies?oooo... a plot twist..."
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah sigh tries to keep her cool but her nails dig in the palms of her hands. Her jaws clenched.
"So you can only prepare me. Only you? Won't that be to onesided? How am i going to be prepared then? Dad don't do this please. "
Alvah glares at Bleys again
"Bleys with all the fucking respect i can now damn well muster. Shut it. Not helping any situation."
Alvah turns to her father again she just looks sad now.
"Dad you were able to keep this all from me for 40 years and i behaved, well enough. I lived a carefree life please let me walk this pattern, create a life of my own where you didn't set my boundries. I might be young, i am not stupid. And i am not as self destructive as you think. "
A deep sigh.
"I wish you just trusted me enough to be my own person. And make decent decisions. "
Alvah takes another step closer she guides Cicero to the floor and points him to go to Random.
"Don't chase me away like you did with Vance. Don't let the fear of me maybe getting hurt stop me from learning and growing. You know what i already learned, if i don't train my abilities with magic sorcery and the likes i will become a danger. And with proper training in that pain will happen. Else one won't learn. Same with combat training, same with learning to run, same with dancing. Everything hurts. "
She holds up her hands trying to get a bit closer again.
"And you know dad, maybe i didn't need protection, maybe i needed a father, maybe i needed a mother, maybe that would have prepared me more then keeping me small locked up and catered by a butler. "
Alvah looks him straight in the eyes.
"Don't chase me away and let md do this. At least then we can later talk about what you can teach me. "
Alvah stands with hands by her sides now open though small slivers of damaged skin of where her nails dug in.
Michael James Watson
Delwin looks about the room.
"Its not you I don't trust. Its them. Its Caine, Gerard, Julian, its the whole rotten pack of them.. They are charming but dangerous. They will twist everything to their desire including you! It was bad enough here when no one knew about Chaos except Sand and I. But they drank black waters and brought the Black Road to Amber."
He turns to Bleys, "Thats You, I'm talking about." Turning to Fiona, "And you. And that monster you keep downstairs."
Bleys stands, looking suddenly less amused, "And I paid for my crimes in blood."
Delwing spins, "Did you? DID YOU!?!?! You seem alive! Yet tens of thousands of my people in Talgwir died to Chaos Spawn YOU set loose! You won't make my daughter a servant of CHAOS!!! "
Random says, "Del, calm down.. We have talked about this. We had this argument with Vance.. Trust that I am better then Oberon was. Harla approved of me.. You know that.."
Del turns to Alvah, "Are you certain about this? Will you acknowledge if it comes to it, that i told you so?"
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah closes her eyes for a moment softly shaking her head.
"Dad i know, i grew up around you. You twisted and created and guided my world to your liking that i would be safe. giving me enough space to feel free enough and be rebelious. But you twisted me as well to what you want. "
She then gestures to Random
" he has been honest enough to say that he wants ofcourse to keep me close if the situation needs it that i am ready to help. "
Her hand points to Bleys
"He to has been the first day clear. or well clear enough for me. That ofcourse he wants to train me in his ways. apparently i am in the raw power sense stronger then others of my age. But you know what he also said, blabber mouth there, that i have to pick and choose my own teacher to what is fitting to my ways. and my views and that it is going to hurt like hell. "
Alvah nods to Fiona
"OH and sweet talking Fiona she has ways to i know she can clearly honey up her words enough they seem tasty enough to swallow. But i know of manipulation that. again, you did the same with me. "
She holds her hands out to her father
"dad please. trust me to make the right decisions. why would i serve chaos if my family is here. "
Alvah shrugs with one shoulder
"Dad show me that i can trust you, stop hiding things from me. That is going to hur tme only more. So yes i am certain about this."
She then grins a sly grin
"And that when i screw up who do i always call. or when i am surrounded by the effects of a bodged spell. You. Trust me dad."
Michael James Watson
"You are going to Vulsar from the end of the Pattern to speak with Vance?"
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah nods
"Yes i am, i want to meet my brother. "
Michael James Watson
Delwin smiles, "Alright, lets."
Delwin turns and sets his foot on the pattern.
Random yells, "HEY!!!???! WHAT THE HELL!??! FIONA? You are supposed to stop that kind of thing!!!"
Fiona raises her hands and steps away.
Bleys bends over laughing.
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah groans as she sees her father step on the pattern. She rolls her eyes and step back.
"fucking typical, controlling son-of-an-ass."
She looks at Fiona
"guess i have to wait then right?"
Alvah her eyes scream murder as she turns to Bleys
"i really thought you were an okey guy, i kind of even spoke nicely about you, but you to are a bit of an ass. "
Michael James Watson
Bleys points at Delwin, "It runs in the family. You'll get used to it."
Arlo puts his hands on Alvahs shoulder and whispers in her ear, "Watch.. Be angry later. Watch his feet.. Slow. He is moving always....don't stop. Stop rather then turn back....He is entering the first Viel. It not hard but its … insistant. look...his feet slide. He is seeing visions.. the past.. he is sliding his feet because the pattern will guide him when he can't raise his foot. Whatever else he is you are watching a Master Pattern Walk. Look at his hands; loose, flexing slightly...flexing the fingers fights off immobility...Stopping, freezing in place is dangerous. ......... the vision are filling his mind... but his feet are moving. Ignore everyone else in the room except Delwin and me...let them bicker... you are going to follow will be where he is soon.. Don't ever let Anger guide your passage through the pattern. It will engrave you as you walk. It isn't engraving knows him. Every speck of him. Well enough to recreate him if it needs to. Are you listening to me? Are you watching him? "
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah is fuming with anger until she hears Arlo behind her. She starts to control her breathing. Calming herself, as if she was readying herself for a job.
Her fingers start tapping like she does when remembering a complicated dance.
Alvah nods slowly listening still to Arlo.
"it is a very slow dance. Flowing. It looks like the pattern is leading. Is it?"
Alvah in hales deeply again opening and closing her eyes slower, to calm her heart, calm her head.
"i am watching, i'm listening. i'm calm. "
Michael James Watson
He whispers.. "a dance? Yes... I can see that.. a tango at times..a waltz at times. Fast and slow.. He is leaving the First Viel.. This will be fast..a space to make distance....Normally you would have watched the pattern walked many times before walking it.. but its too late for that unless you choose not to do it now. Once you put your foot on it you must walk. Look....he is walking normall around the edge.. distance.. The sparks are more distracting for viewers.. the walker just feels the electricity. The pattern is senient. Its your dance partner in this. some times it leads, sometime you wil.. He is in the second arc. Its hard and powerful. Your first time you will feel like it is breaking you into pieces, molecules.. not painfully...but it is tearing you apart.. Keep walking even if you don't feel your feet. flex your fingers even if they are gone. Watch the movie, listen to the music, but don't forget the dance."
Arlo leads Alvah by the shoulder around to the very edge of the pattern as Delwin reaches the inner parts.
"This is the Final Veil..It surrounds the pattern then leads inwards. It is rebuilding him. It knows him. All the patterns, all the shadows of the primal pattern are connected. They are one intellects of many parts. Practioners say a pattern has Flavors. They are more like moods. Some times Wild and raging, eager to toss power.. sometimes Fiery, or Shaken, remembering pain.. but usually Calm. Watch the feet, hips.. sometimes you have to settle for a hip thrust, or a head turn to keep moving. The pattern wants you to wont make a step on the offshoots accidentally.. but it makes you earn the power it gives you.. If we are contentious as a people its because of this.. Logrus walkers have it worse.. Chaos is more so because of it.. Remember...we are as are those in shadow, only more so.."
"He will step into the center in a moment.. Calm. Complete. Clean. Clear...Refreshed. "
Delwin steps into the center. Looking at Alvah. Calm, almost serene.
Random steps to Alvah. "Your turn."
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah looks at her father his feet, at his body how he moves. seeing it merely in the dance technical terms. Not even seeing him as a person.
She continues to watch as she is guided towards the beginning.
Looking up to Random she nods, a slight smile to Arlo
"thank you for your help."
Turning back to Random
"Thank you for the oppertunity. and please keep Cicero safe."
She then grins at Bleys
"if you are entertained about the brownies then i will tell you one day about when i made popcorn."
Alvah winks to Dwynwen giving her a friendly warm smile. Then turning her attention back she inhales and just steps on the pattern.
Michael James Watson
Random hands Cicero to Spatchi then walks up and watches Alvah as she walks..
The first veil brings up the sparks around her feet. The feeling of power is tangible. IT feels numbing, and pin pricks.. as she steps on she feels what Delwin just went through. Flashes of her past race through her mind, not distracting but some how framed. She sees them like a vision through a sparkler rimmed mirror. Step after step, as the dance is a slow and deliberate.
The second veil is colorful and vast., Showing vast lands and forests. Oceans.. something fire like.. ice walls.
The Third Veil shows quick images but finally shows a vast city of pyramids with a ritual sacrifice in progress. victims brought to the alter, hearts rpiied out. the priests raising them and drawing power from the sigil of azcala with them... then the vision fade.
Slowly, Alvah feels rushes of power unlike anything before.. as she steps into the center next to Delwin.
Feeling refreshed and clean.. exhilarated.. she knows she can will herself anywhere
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah keeps focus on her body,
like Arlo said. Just move. She uses all of her dance training to keep her body moving even if it just the slightest of movement.
Seeing her past she has mixed feelings about it. especially now, but she lets it be. It had already happened. no use looking back.
seeing the wonderful sights a smile returns to her face. Albeit a very strained one Her focus stays.
Alvah gasps a moment seeing the horrid scene's from Azcala. But she just keeps moving.
Standing next to her father. feeling way better then before and powerful she just shakes her head to him.
"You cannot keep doing this dad, stop try to control everything in my life."
She then looks towards the group outside the pattern. as far as she can see them ofcourse. A nod, a smile.
"To Vulsara then. " She focusses on her request on her wish to go there.
Michael James Watson
Arriving she sees first a vast ocean. Looking around she is on a rectangular balcony. The air is salty and warm but pleasant. on the wall behind are two doors an a large window. both doors are open to let in the breeze.
Walking out of one the doors is a short, thin, frail looking woman of a late age. She walks to the edge and looks out to sea.
She says, "North east lays Amber. Let me look at you.."
"My goodness. As I suspected. Sharp as a knife. I was told you would be coming. I won't keep you long. Just a cup of tea's worth. Would you like to stay out here or come in?"
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah was not expecting to end up here, she looks around feeling the breeze she just inhales and enjoys even if it is for a second.
Turning seeing the woman she smiles. Even if it is a bit confused. Trying to place the face with the many names she heard and the paintings she saw.
"Are you, Delwin his mother?" Alvah asks it carefully.
She then shrugs
"well maybe this is for the best this gives me time to cool down. And tea would be lovely just like this view it is almost magic."
Michael James Watson
She smiles, "Its nice to be remembered. Its been awhile since i had guests. Yes, I'm Harla. "
She steps gingerly for her age inside..
She pours a strong smelling tea., Biscuits, honey, and slices of ham are on a small tray. In a corner is needlework in a frame. Another corner has a calligraphy stand. A bed is in the far corner. Its bare, almost austere.
"You are Alvah, i believe? The Unicorn was unsure if she had the name right. Please, have a seat. The afternoon breeze is lovely this time of day"
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah smiles
"actually dad did tell about you, told me about your story. From his perspective ofcourse. "
She nods and sits down
"Yes i am Alvah, the unicorn had it right. It is lovely to meet you Lady Harla. "
Alvah sticks her face in the breeze to just enjoy the smell and feeling she then looks back again.
"It is so nice to meet family. "
Michael James Watson
"especially dead ones? "
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah chuckles softly
"Well you would be the first one in that category. But then again i hear dad say, mostly dead several times now. Speaking about you, about Oberon."
Michael James Watson
She nods, sips her tea. "Well, my husband and is mostly dead because he was terribly injured. He rests with the Ancestors of Darkness and heals. I am dead because i died. The pattern sent you to me anyway. It is amusing to see my servants here think me made, talking to imaginary people. If they only knew! I suppose you are not actually here either, but the pattern has given us this moment to regard each other. Tell Vance I am so proud with what he did to create Vulsara. Tell Delwin to leave Vance alone, he is a good boy serving Amber as he does. And Sand, tell her I said hello."
She nibbles a bit.
" Would that I could return with you to see Amber as it is then. But i will have to be comforted by my memories"
Amber Bronkhorst
Alvah nods slowly
"possible that i am not here no, i just walked the pattern for the first time. With the necessary drama from dad. "
Alvah rolls her eyes and lets out a sigh
"But i will tell Vance, can't wait to meet him.
And yes i will tell that that you said to leave Vance alone. If i meet Sand i'll say hello."
She then sips her tea and thinks
"isn't there a way or something to bring to you that you can watch Amber? in its current state?"
Michael James Watson
She smiles, "Oh I am kept up with the state of affairs but to see the streets clean and colorful with my own eyes and now the eyes of others would be wonderful. Thank you for the offer. You must go soon. You have my blessing. Do not treat the other children of Oberon too hard. He was a difficult father since he had cares no monarch in shadow could ever know. I speak with Random and Vaille fairly often, through the crowns. Lovely woman, her. I was so worried about Random.. For such a sensitive boy he needed a strong queen..Be well, dear.."
As she finishes her tea, almost, she sees the world fade away.
Standing on a balcony, She sees over a vast clean high tech city from the top of the tallest buildings around. The top is huge and a pair of shuttle craft sit beyond.
At a collection of tables and chairs near the building edge she sees Delwin arguing with a taller man in a star Fleet uniform. The two are having a heated discussion using many hand gestures.