FIRST CONTACT: BEGINNINGS OF THE ECLIPSE
Several scented candles and incenses sit in a almost perfect circle around Seth. Just after dusk, the moon just completely finished rising over the horizon, covering the earth in its silvery rays. In the troughs of a hilly grassland, a modest, hand built gazebo stands with an open roof, showing the night sky through its open slats. Seth sits criss-crossed on the floor, made by worn cobblestone, with grass peeking through the gaps in-between: the stones still warm with the lingering magic of an old rune. His long-dead spiritual ancestor, of which he shares a soul with (which is pretty weird, if you actually think about it) told him of this place... In fact it’s where she used to meditate on her magics. Or that’s what her voice inside his head said.
He clears his mind as a surprisingly warm breeze sweeps across the land, threatening to extinguish the various small fires he lit. A familiar buzzing that starts in his toes and ends in his nose sweeps upwards in his body. A puff of white smoke seeps out from his nostrils as his spiritual guardian leaves his body. Feeling sort-of empty, he focusing his now slightly blurry vision on the projection in front of him. She smiles.
“Seth… I’ve been inside your body for too long! You need to bathe more often, my boy,” she laughs loudly.
Seth stares at her. “I’m teasing,” she says.”You’re too much, Nanna,”
he shakes his head. The plethora of dad jokes--well, spirit grandma jokes--has deseneistized him.
After a medium amount of small talk, which was mostly them recalling (and scrutinizing them) they began a session of meditation. Lately, at least, his studies and meditations of the journal of his magic seems to have broken through an invisible mental border, allowing him to concentrate his magic much easier.
After about half an hour of peaceful thought to soothe and clear his mind, Seth opens his eyes readily. His nanna nods readily. He draws the old, tattered journal that contains the secrets of his magic from a leather satchel nearby. He sets it so its cover is face up, his spirit grandma’s beautiful calligraphy displayed on the front. The pages fly open so quickly that the old binding of the book almost breaks. His Nanna’s mouth opens and she starts mumbling, “In libro de magicis secreta, vidua, et ignorabo lunae agit, patitur influunt in me est scientia inrisio repetebatur. Dominus meus antiquis scientia invenire nova, permittere ad aggrediendum soror potestas in caelo. Dedit eis decuplum super dolorem patitur reconsile qui super eos,” she begins spouting more phrases to begin the transfer of knowledge. The pages flip back and forth wildly: certain runes, words, or pictures glow and they appear in sight. The whole journal begins glowing bright blue, as well as Nanna’s eyes. The moon itself shines brighter, seemingly shining a ray directly onto the plaza. Seth’s eyes begin to glow as well. First the pupils, then the whites of his eyes. He makes eye contact with his spirit grandma, and as their eyes connect, the book rises into the air in between them. A ray of light shoots from his Nanna’s eyes, into the journal, and then into his eyes. His entire awareness of his surroundings vanishes. Minutes? No, hours? Pass as this process continues. He blinks back to consciousness and all of the candles surrounding him fizzle out at once. Sweating, he lays back and rests his eyes for a minute.
Looking up at the twilight sky, he wonders ”Is it light out?”
His spirit grandma answers his thoughts, “The moon set already, Seth. Time passes when you’re meditating.””I’ve never done it until dawn,”
he says thoughtfully, while pointlessly searching the sky for the moon.
“The moon just set, and that’s why your mediation was cut short. If it was out, I’d bet you could keep it up for longer.”
He looks at her blankly. That makes sense. Sort of.”Is there a way I could meditate without the moon?”
he asks, casually.
Nanna stares at the ground for a second, thinking, “Well, no, not while using Luna,” she hums to herself, “I suppose you are ready enough,” she finishes.”What?”
he says, ”What does that mean?”
“Come, talk with me until the sun rises.”
He complies and sits up.
“I was a powerful, legendary mage back in my day,” she huffs, “I created many different types of magic, it was a hobby. I prefer knitting now,” she jokes, “But above from the basic arts, I wanted to make special magics,” she pauses to lift up the old, but charming journal that contains his already known magic, “Luna was my last creation before I died.” Seth nods. “I made more!” she gloats, “long stories aside, I made Sol… No, not soul. Sol! Like the sun! Remember that, sweetie. I figured it would make a well-rounded mage out of you. I DID create Luna as a reflection of Sol.”
Seth blinks. And thinks. It took him a minute to process this. It seems so recent that he retrieved Luna from a deep jungle. Wait. Ugh. Would he have to hike up a mountain or trudge through a desert? “No, Seth, It’s right here,” his spiritual guide responds to his thoughts, “under this gazebo.” She points up, while still sitting down, “At noon, the sun sits directly in the center of the roof. It’s light refracts and activates an old magic rune on the floor.” While not outwardly so, she seems very excited. Seth feels around his legs, now realizing the gaps between the ancient cobblestone is symmetrical. “All you have to do now is wait until noon.”
Seth groans. And so after he waited for a good six hours, splayed out on the warm stone. So far, tall hills surrounding the gazebo shaded it. Until now. The wet, hot, summer heat rose over the awning as the sun creeps into position over the open roof of the structure. His Nanna puffs out of his nostrils, standing up and directing to the roof. “Now, look at this! I doubt you have been here during the day, but less when the sun is out!” He scoots away from the center of the plaza in fear he would disturb the process. The sun aligns itself in the center of the roof and the structure itself sparks to life. The skylight window magnifies the rays of sunlight, and it pierces the center of the plaza. Rainbow colors spark and brighten the gaps between the stone. Seth stands up as the stones begin rumbling. He backs off of the platform and the stones gradually descend into the ground to form a pair of stairs.
“And here it is!” she looks excited. “A tomb… Well not really… More like a cellar. Well, I constructed it to hold some stuff I wanted to keep secure. Well. Maybe not that either. It does open up every day at noon… Well, there is a set of trials that require some of the magics I only know. Unfortunately, none of them are Luna. Fortunately I am here to open them for you, my dear boy,” she finishes. "Uhh… Well I’ll head down then,"
Seth begins walking down the narrow and steep staircase. The stones are warm and there’s an unnatural heat emanating the from the interior of the cellar. He pants, face already slick with sweat even as he is barely halfway down the circular flight of stairs. After what seems like an eternity of walking downward (he is totally looking forward the walk back up) he arrives in an extremely narrow corridor. So narrow in fact, that he has to inch his way sideways through the small opening. Luckily, the polished stone brick walls are not as jagged as plain rock, but still tugs at the fabric of his clothes and his hair, shirt sticking to his skin with sweat. Ew. Meanwhile, his guardian phases through the walls and lands in front of him. “It gets wider after the first door.” He hopes so. After about two minutes or so of slow crawling, the tunnel stops, for the normal person. “Here is my first lock. If the narrow pathway did not deter anyone already,” she laughs. The lump of dirt under Seth’s foot feels more like a bone now. He sincerely hopes not.
“Step back.”"Uh, okay..."
he scoots back as far as he can, around five feet.
“Procella: Arc of the Tempest,” she put her translucent hands on the back edge of the wall. A touch of magic flows into the wall, highlighting various runes and other scrawls in the gate. It lit up the tunnel. And yeah. He was stepping on a bone. Great. The wall literally fell apart. Like the bricks literally fell over into the next room. A rush of hot air blows in his face, revealing a dim red room once his vision clears. He sat down on the floor of the room, a bit light headed. It’s definitely a good substitute for a sauna, if he ever needs one. His spirit combs across the room, touching the opposite wall. “Flos: Arc of the Forest,” she says, and the walls lights up with a green light, which bleeds into the wall, and creates an intricate floral pattern, before the wall splits down the middle and retracts on both sides. A blast of scalding air flips Seth’s hair in the wind and catches in his (now wet) shirt. Ugh. It was just getting in the way at this point. The shirt sticks to his skin and makes a posterboard-like whooping noise as it flicks off of his body. He swears he can hear a sizzling as the sopping shirt hits the ground. He runs his hands down his torso, roughly flicking off the sweat sticking to his skin. He follows his extended spirit into the next corridor. Eyes adjusting to the darkness, he vaguely makes out a pedestal with a rectangular light on it? It’s very dim orange glow highlights the surroundings, chests and shelves of… Clothes? Melted chocolates? Bird cages? And plenty of books, kind of smelly, and slightly brown. His Nanna is nowhere to be found. ”Go, my youth, that’s it. Sol. My magnum opus, ready to be unleashed onto the world,”
a thought not his enters his brain. And he does. He reaches out to the book, air becoming hotter and hotter. He grips the book, hot as fire and lifts it from its resting place.
Almost immediately, the heat disappears. The one remnant of it is a light thumming of pulsating heat from inside the book. The book! Beautifully decorated with gold bearings and a metal clasp. He thinks about his older spellbook. Ratty, and bound with old leather, mostly falling apart and fading in places. Sure, magnum opus. She moves forward and places a hand on his forehead and one on his right shoulder. “Now come. I am ready to live through you, such a youthful body! Let us meditate on this.”
After a hasty exit of the cellar, and a lengthy re-locking of the corridors, with Seth basically rebuilding the wall. Surprisingly, the whole ordeal of climbing through a secret, underground, safe only took about an hour. The sun high in the sky, both Seth and his spiritual extension sat down after the ground of the plaza reforms, stones now cold and normal. He lit each of the candles again and began to clear his mind. Listening to the surround sounds of the summer day… The sun’s splendor, what it provides for a grassland as such. The plants that grow, the songbirds that perch on them, and the temperature driven wind that pushes through the landscape, rustling the grass. The book itself opens, and a great heat washes over the nearby area as the book rising into position. Beams of light project from his spirit guide, to the book, and into his eyes. Vast information of the sun, it deity that resides within it, the past where it rose and set whenever and the deep control that the magic uses from the truce made with such god. Many images and information flows into his mind, old memories from his previous incarnation. Eventually the sun goes down, and he snaps out of his trance as twilight shines its light over the land. When opening his eyes, the candles were burning extremely bright and his Nanna gone. He grips his new book just like he would grip his old journal.
He could now mediate for weeks at a time if he wanted to, not saying he’d want to. (2106)