The Fracture: Amber Forest
Since Vita’s last letter to Omen he was unable to replicate what he experienced during his meditation. Even as he practiced hand to hand combat to take his mind off of his inability to connect with the force that he felt. His frustration often lent a hand to his physical training which he neglected most times. This distraction was unwelcome for his imprisoned mind. Omen suggested he pursue the research of Professor Albinon. Vita got the odd feeling that his contant pushed him away from coming to the collective but had no substantial proof. However, among the information the demvir was able to discern once you entered the Collective leaving was very frowned on and down right nigh impossible. Omen himself had not left in almost a decade. These facts raised many concerns for Vita. He wanted to unify the demvir not isolate himself from it. Questions would have to wait to be answered for a later date.
Vita flipped through the notes the enlil sent him. Albinon spent four years in study of the Phantasmal Fairy. How this creature came to be he was unsure of but, that was not the focus of the professors efforts. The fairy’s physical form was solid much like a rock formation layered on top of one another coming to a rounded tip. Inside, a cavity filled with a deep blue jelly substance that oozed out of cracks in its stone. Large yellow eyes hooded from the rough outer layers covered in shadow. Gems lined the front face of the creature that glimmer slightly with the more fluid it had inside its cavity. The base of the subject is surrounded by sticks, grass, leaves, and various other fauna much like a nest. To date, no appendages have been discovered.
At night it was discovered that during a new moon the fae emit a soft hum and its shell closes. Slowly it petrifies and a small hand sized creature with the form more common to sprites emerges from a blue ball of energy. With the speed of a hummingbird these astral forms are projections of the creatures incorporeal form. Smartly it visits various flowers that have trapped the moonlight in dew. Once enough is collected it weaves all it has into a solid pearl and places it in the nest to be eaten by the physical form. Professor Albinon hypothesized the creatures and the trees themselves were connected somehow but had yet to gain any proof toward that assertion for the shells seemed to be in a state of staysis, void of life and yet not dead. The thought that a being could separate its consciousness from its physical form was a curiosity enough for Vita to pack up everything. He closed the binder of notes he was given just before he arrived to the location agreed upon by him and the enchanter. A camp site within the thick of the Amber Forest.
For most of the journey Vita struggled with his personal dogma against biologicals. However, the professor was Enlil which subdued his disdain marginally. Through his correspondence the researchers ability to hold a conversation of anything other than work was nonexistent which rendered Vita’s curt tone ineffective and overall tolerable to him.
The Amber Forest, a place which got its name from the many deposits of fossilized sap produced there. A lush canopy of maple trees with leaves slightly opaque and in a perpetual state of Autumne that refracted the light of day into a never ending sunset. The overall feel of the forest radiated energy, the ambient mana in the air electrified Vita’s senses. The arcanist’s keen eyes focused on the energy around him. He could almost see the trails of mana flowing around and through the trees, water, and air. There was a connection to the land that Vita craved. He felt a nostalgia from his days buried in the ice cocoon but, this was different. A warmth he had not come to feel from the land until now.
His moment of pause interrupted by the sound of a loud avian like scream followed by the distinct snap of branches with a thud shortly to after. Vita let out a deep sigh of annoyance. Before him laid sorry was Albinon, a enlil with a proclivity for talking too much and a notorious habit of being clumsy. The guild outwardly mocked his unconventional methods and chosen topics but it did not seem to bother him. His indifference toward society's expectations and social norms are no doubt what saved his sanity. Vita walked over piously and looked down on the pathetic excuse of an enlil. His plumage tattered and mangled at best with a crest of teal and blue atop his head. He sported a leather vest filled with various baubles and scrolls among its pockets. His wings sparse with feathers matched his talon like legs that were covered in dirt and blood soaked bandages.
Vita looked down displeased with the biological before him. Either a genius or a mad man sometimes one in the same. The demvir questioned himself. Was this really the man responsible for the discovery of the groundbreaking field of interdimensional species? Presumptions aside, Vita extended a cold mechanical hand to Albinon.
“Professor, I am Vita. How… unusual for us to meet in such a manner.”
“You startled me! I thought you to be a bandit! How relieved I am it is you, Vita!”
The demvir raised a metaphorical eyebrow as he helped the lump of organic material up. Albinon was much taller than he was although incapable of taking care of himself. Illogical mids always seemed inferior to the mechanical man.
What a sad excuse…
“You should be. Are you injured, the distance of your downward descent was large. Where is the rest of your research team, shouldn’t one of them be present when you are up in the canopy?” Albinon ruffled his feathers. The ones that remained anyway and shook off the residual dust, dirt, and foliage.
“Oh they are around. It’s okay really I’m fine by myself honestly but, not anymore! You’re finally here and there is so much for us to talk about! That must wait!”
Albinon was caught in a mix of emotions between excitement and from what Vita could tell paranoia. A screw or two was missing for the bird brain. The novice enchanter was on his guard to say the least. The anxious enlil searched the ground frantically for a moment before letting out a squeal of joy. He picked up a large piece of bark with an odd texture to it. He got up and gestured for the demvir to follow him.
“Come, Come!” You are just in time for dinner. You are in luck tonight I was able to peel off a piece of bark bread that was growing!”
Vita gazed at the inedible looking piece of brown rock. “I will pass, thank you. Your caloric deficit tells me you require it more than I do by looking at the state of you.” His tone aristocratic at best.
Albinon looked at him with large black eyes planely. He let out another crow and headed to his camp site. Vita’s tone did not seem to bother the avian in the slightest.
“This way! You don’t want to be out her at night when the kids are out playing!”
What an interesting choice of vernacular.
He folded his hands behind his back and calmly followed his lead to the campsite. Quickly he learned there was a day camp and a night camp. Vita had brought enough provisions for a week or two but he felt the trip would take him much longer than that. The two rolled up to a cave with a narrow mouth. Albinon placed his hand on a warn boulder in the wall and magically the rocks rumbled and folded into one another to reveal a large cavernous space with floating lights and several tents. Inside, enough equipment for a compliment of roughly four people. Most of the things had not been touched in sometime from the looks of it. This raised many questions. Cots still made with dust settled on them. Various packs with the gear ravaged and taken apart. On a far back wall various books with a combination of alchemy and enchantment devices. Several containers filled with the blue jelly of various sized. The rock-like specimen of the Phantasmal fairy sat in a square array on the ground with various enchantments layered on top of one another; many of which Vita was not familiar with. Finally in a cage with glass walls and symbols etched into its facade was an incorporeal form of the creature. Trapped by Albinon and his team. Behind him the rocks crumbles back into place sealing them inside what would be home for the time being.The professor made way for the center of the cave and lit a decent sized fire that kept the chill of the cave walls at bay.
Albinon’s anxiousness diminished moderately while in the sanctity of the night campsite. There was not much conversation between the two for the first few hours in which Vita set up his pack and his things in meticulous order. The [avien race] seemed very distracted by his work way back in the recess of the cave. He rambled incessantly doing math out loud and gave no indication he was aware of his state. Clearly his outward representation was a reflection of his mental state Vita gathered. There was a large distraction in the forefront of Albinon’s mind and this trp would not be as fruitful as the robot hoped for him and [cluster dude]. Bother by hie situation Vita grabbed some hot food he had prepared and fresh bandages covered in a paste of herbs and salves to aid in healing.
“Professor, excuse me for interrupting but you looked hungry. Feed yourself. Your physical appearance is unacceptable. Clean yourself.” Vita placed a bowl of warm water and a towel on the research table while cleaning it off of the various notes.
The man jumped sending a pile of ink flying through the air. “What are you doing! I must continue my research there is time for that later. Back. Back! Don’t touch my things, it took me much time to organize these!”
His tone seemed desperate opposed to that of an obsessed researcher. The more time that passed the lingering feeling that something was off settled into his gears. Vita brushed everything off the table and slammed the food down, stomped over to Albinon and grabbed him by the shoulders.
“You insignificant creton, You are illogically killing yourself over this research. Your life is not that important to me but I thought as a man of the arcane and artisanship I at least expected a sane mind. I have taken my time to honor you with my attention and I come here. To find what? A frail and weak mind. A biological mess held together by a meat sac. How dare you waste my time! I see this has been a waste. To think that someone like you could educate the eternal was a farce. I will be gone by morning.”
Albinon leapt at Vita frantically. Panic crept into his bones and ruffled his feathers. He heard everything that Vita said and the only thing to resonate with him was “I will be gone by morning.” He reached out and grabbed at the machines feet. He grabbed ahold of anything he could as hard as he could. His grip so strong blood dribbled down his hands. His eyes dilated and his throat tightened. This was a man in fear.
“No! Don’t leave! Everyone's left me. All of them Taken! Don’t let me be alone again I beg you. See, I am eating! Look!” The enchanter began to voraciously shovel food into his mouth.There was something going on here and Vita had willingly walked right into it. He formed a list of questions logically in his mind for his new… pet. HOwever, he clearly was not of stable mind to answer. The look of displeasure permeated from his face veiled with mild concern. He motioned for the crazed man to take a seat and he began the necessary task of healing him to his level of ability.