Fantasy Heaven -Illusion- (Kane)

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Fantasy Heaven -Illusion- (Kane)

Post by Ederlaath » 2012-04-21 23:19

It aggravated Ederlaath that there was only so much time in a day. Even indulging as she often did in certain ways of extending her waking hours she had only managed to bring it to 20 out of the typical cycle of 24. Anything more and it begin to wear on even her. Worse still, a fair portion of that was taken up by the affairs of state. It was a good thing in the long run, of course, bulwarking her admittedly tenuous grasp on power, but there were times she missed the life she had before all this. She enjoyed the quiet sometimes.

And then there were times like these. Normally she spent her free time absorbed in her own pursuits, and even then felt like she was neglecting them. Poor Anansi had been quite put out for a while with the change in schedule as well, but had forgiven her in time. That was before she had broached the subject of her education with her, well, was he still her husband? It was close enough, anyhow.

She never expected to be a master Jedi, nor anything more than generally competent really. She had neither the time to pursue it as some had, nor the inclination to spend her days meditating even if she did. But at the same time, it was getting dangerous not to know anything at all. It was slightly disturbing if in the end useful that her husband seemed to agree. At least it gave her what she wanted, even if she had to give up some of her own art in return. Such was the price of power—at least she was confident that she wouldn't be soon rivaled in that realm. Every second of her life was practise, and innumerable sacrifices had been made. Lessons and forbidden wisdom simply did not compare.

And she was still getting something out of it, which made the sting a little more bearable. She had dressed informally for the occasion, her usual dresses deemed rather inappropriate. For a moment, she had almost not bothered redressing at all, and simply leaving herself in her undergarments. It wasn't something he hadn't seen before. But the Emperor did get rather rather wrapped up with himself about those sorts of things, so loose workout clothes it was.

She sat crosslegged on the floor as she waited for her husband, slowly nibbling her way through the longest pretzel stick she had the pleasure of seeing in her life—probably the least well known benefit of being Empress—as she skimmed through the article on her slate. She wasn't as active in her field as she used to be, but she liked to keep up anyhow, and one really couldn't know enough about the structure of the pelvic girdle in australophithecines. At least, she didn't think so.

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Re: Fantasy Heaven -Illusion- (Kane)

Post by Kane » 2012-04-22 00:04

Usually it was he who called upon his students, when he felt it suitable. But when it came to his wife Ederlaath, her schedule was usually well known to him, unlike her activites; most of which he had little interest in. So they had pre-arranged this meeting. He could feel her presence on the other side as he approached the door. Subtle, but familiar, and therefore enough to be noticed even when he wasn't looking for it.

She had loose-fitting garments on, suggesting that she was no stranger to physical training. It also demonstrated that she had a fair idea of what this could entail. His own tunics were similarly simple, black and loose. The Sovereign Protectors that escorted him silently took up guard posts on each side of the door, leaving him to enter alone. He regarded Ederlaath with his piercing eyes and a brief nod in her direction.

"You seem to be prepared. Good, let's not waste any time. First, however, I need an idea of what you can already do."

With that he lifted his hand and a shimmering ball of light appeared above it. It was relatively simple, to gather a little of his own vast storages of the Force and channel it into another form of energy at a single point, creating... light. Simple, but for the completely untrained, it could still form an insumountable task, impossible to wrap your head around. To do it you first had to be able to feel the Force, next gather it intentionally, and finally, assemble it with the purpose of converting it. An untrained sensitive used the Force instinctively, often powered by their emotions or distress. To form that purpose, and to hone it to a finely tuned razor's edge, took more than raw talent, even for the line of Palpatine.

"Your turn", he said and lowered his hand, the light disappearing. While she concentrated on her task, he went over to one of the small wall benches, to check if suitable tools were available as they should. Even though he took his eyes off her, he could feel what she was doing easily enough, given that he was paying attention.
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Re: Fantasy Heaven -Illusion- (Kane)

Post by Ederlaath » 2012-04-22 06:53

That was one difference between the man Ederlaath married and her current husband—he was a great deal more brusque in certain dealings. Not impolite, per se, simply less willing to waste time on things he didn't consider to be important. Or perhaps more appropriately, found much less in terms of social niceties to be important. Still, she could sympathise, not particularly wanting to waste the time they had together either.

She finished off her pretzel with a contemplative air, watching as he worked. Or, really trying her best to feel while he worked. She knew at least that much, that the gestures were there for focus and the like, but it was the inside of the thing that mattered.

And she was good at focusing, if nothing else. She had no formal training, and undoubtedly she would require corrections to her technique in all sorts of ways, but she knew how to bend herself to a task.

Of course, bending herself to this task was a little more challenging. It was simple enough, but it was out of her normal range of expertise. She could feel the living Force around her, even if she probably felt it a little differently than most classically trained, the tattered fabric of reality, decaying and crumbling, falling into the abyss of the hereafter. But when she saw the light to guide the way, it wasn't in any way literal light.

That didn't stop her from trying. How had it been phrased, when she had seen it on the records of training materials she had seen in the past? It had been couched in scientific language. Odd, she thought, for a cult of mystics, but there it was—everything seemed to be couched in scientific language, save when they didn't understand something, and then it was all about uncertainty and shrouds.

Excite the molecules of the air, or pour your energy into the photons you wish to emit. There had been a few methods and metaphors described and she could think of more, but she had never taken to them. She tried anyhow, letting her thoughts calm, focusing herself, letting… what? How did you focus on the molecules in the air? Or the photons in front of you? Or even on some kind of "lightness"? Her brow creased and her lips pursed. She felt like she was trying to pick fibres apart from a rope, only to find the rope was a single strand of plastic with nothing to gain purchase on.

She sighed, relaxing, and then wrinkling her nose. This was not working. It was dry, and just out of her grasp, out of reach of her usual more… esoteric approach to things. Well, if she couldn't do it the tradition way. She grabbed a hold of the skein of reality, yanking it sharply upwards, and burned.

She blinked then, staring. "Well, that's not quite what I think was intended," she admitted. It wasn't just light, but a pale blue flame, crackling silently in mid-air in front of her. It wasn't cold, but it certainly wasn't warm, and it made a chill go up her spine all the same.

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Re: Fantasy Heaven -Illusion- (Kane)

Post by Kane » 2012-04-27 12:10

Sorry, I thought I had a post in here, but it must've been eaten and then I got caught up in the latest drama.

Kane slowly turned around, studying the rift Ederlaath had caused. It was plainly visible, which was what caused the blue flame. The rift had only been present momentary, but the flame remained, however without any apparent source of fuel. It wasn't conversion of Force energy, nor was it excited atoms or molecules giving off thermal energy. It was a quantum fluctuation of the sort present when a ship entered or exited hyperspace, and it was giving off radiation similar to Cronau, but it wasn't. It was a telltale sign that she had literally ripped a small wound in the fabric of spacetime and briefly exposed it to contact with another dimension, of which he knew several existed and had in fact experimented with some of them in the past. Enough to know that it could be quite dangerous. His face remained unexpressive, but he experienced a slight pinch of curiosity, which was rare enough these days.

"It is interesting, nonetheless. It's a good example of how you can use your specific talents to create a given effect, even if the method is nonstandard."

He turned again to pick up the snifter he had filled up to three quarters with clear spring water and dropped a small leaf on top of its shimmering surface tension and brought it with him back to Ederlaath. He placed it on the floor in front of her, then lifted his hand to snuff out the blue flame with a quick gesture. It wouldn't do to have its energies confuse the results.

"I'm thinking now that the water test will not be conclusive on you yet. Your talents seem to be wild and unfocused. Nevertheless, it may offer some insight. Simply hold your palms very near the sides of the glass and call upon the Force. Do not focus on harnessing its energy, just invoke it within yourself. Start slow and build up if you can. Try to hold it for a few minutes."

He pondered what Ederlaath's talents might be. On one hand, she was an obvious manipulator, on the other, she was full of intrigue and deceptions, which might point her in the opposite direction, that of transformation. There simply wasn't enough information to tell so far, which was why he subjected her to tests in order to at least get a hint or two.
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Re: Fantasy Heaven -Illusion- (Kane)

Post by Ederlaath » 2012-04-27 22:50

Wild and unfocused? That was probably come to think the most complimentary thing anyone had said about Ederlaath's own private explorations into the nature of the Force. Usually she was called much worse. To be fair, she probably deserved it, with some of the things she got into, but that didn't change the matter that it was highly unflattering.

It was certainly true that she was unfocused as well, having lacked the formal structured training most Jedi went through. At least, in the ways that they usually counted, as she was certainly disciplined when she needed to be. Not that that changed the fact that she suffered from a lack of coherence to her talents, and she was probably even too far gone to really compete with more formally trained Jedi on that ground, anyhow.

She sat herself down again, crosslegged by the glass and made as though she were about to pick it up, cradling the image of it between her hands. Another one of those calming breaths, the most useful of the meditative techniques she had picked up, second in calming effect only to her own invention of pinching the bridge of her nose and saying unkind things about the object of her ire. The power didn't quite flow through her as it traced lines, like cobwebs extending throughout herself, to follow her usual metaphor, then outwards. She could almost see the little network jumping from her fingertips, inwards to the glass, light and delicate patterns through the air.

She never claimed to be the most powerful or intimidating of people. Her bloodline was strong, no doubt, and she was no marginal talent, but at the same time she wasn't the blazing star of unchecked power her late grand-uncle was, either. And just as well, as he had always taken poorly to that sort of potential threats.

But she could do delicate with the best of them, even when she wasn't really trying to. She couldn't see the movement of the water, but she could feel it now, a complicated series of vortices, each running in complicated patterns around the strands of the web building in front of her, whether guided by her subconscious or simply by some set of self-ordering natural principles she couldn't tell.

And yet the surface remained still, a deceptive calm over the network growing beneath it. And then, the slender filaments were almost invisible in the water at first, the barest suggestion of where the water was slowing, moving to a stop along the lines of her will. They weren't quite ice, or at least, anything like the normal ice one found in an icebox. It formed far too rapidly for that, crystals never forming. Instead, they were as glassy as the tumbler itself, at once both without defined structure, and beginning to form a fractal along the threads that provided the pattern for their formation.

They grew more rapidly then, joining and branching, making a web in the interior of the glass, a visible one this time, through which the rest of the water flowed. At the same time more exotic than any ice normally seen, and then again far more natural, reflecting the amorphous ice common to the darkest depths of space, out where no mortal hand or even stellar object could alter its primordial natural.

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Re: Fantasy Heaven -Illusion- (Kane)

Post by Kane » 2012-05-04 12:19

Sitting opposite of Ederlaath, also with his legs crossed, Kane observed her solemnly for a little while until he had resolved his assessment.

"That was actually more useful than I had thought it would be. You are a transformer."

Ederlaath gave him a quizzical look in return, one that clearly said 'I'm a what now?' Perhaps the term gave her associations with giant robots that could change shape, who knows. But she realized of course, that in this context, her husband was speaking of what he thought of her Force talents.

"Because the water changed?", was her actual response.

"That, and because it confirmed my suspicions. I teach my own school of the Force. It is perhaps no more accurate or flawed than any other, but in so doing, I have been able to re-discover ancient abilities that were lost for thousands of years. The basics is that the Force can be divided into six different Aspects, and every Force user has some talent in each. The one Aspect in which you can reach your full potential is the Primary Aspect, in your case, Transformation. It also happens to be my weakest Aspect, but nevertheless, I could teach you many things about it. I'm not so sure that the only other primary Transformer in the Order is suitable to teach you, and in any case, she already has a student."

Ederlaath appeared to ponder this information for a while, then she had another question.

"So what happens next?"

"Targeted basic training, mostly. Sensing the Force, gathering it, directing it for a purpose.But since you have already started on it, some special training with regards to your ability as well. I will set up a training regiment for you to follow, and during lessons, we will explore the latter under controlled forms. This is also your formal initiation into our Order, however, I don't intend to reveal the fact to the others just yet."

He also reached into his long sleeves and brought out something he had kept hidden in there. A lightsabre, which he placed before her on the gray metal deck.

"I'm sure you are aware of these. This particular piece is simple but reliable, but with the current powercell in it it's little more than a stun baton. I'm giving you this for two reasons. One, because it's a badge of office, two, because training with a lightsabre can enhance your ability with the Force. You get the best results when mind and body works in conjunction."

Again, Ederlaath seemed to have her own mind of this, but she accepted the lightsabre without vocal dissent.

"I believe we have little time to train before your skills will be challenged. To that end, I propose drastic measures to accelerate your abilities."

Drastic measures? That brought forth a raised eyebrow. Just what did Kane have in mind, exactly? She wasn't left longing for an answer, but it didn't really explain anything.

"I have done this before. It's not particularly dangerous. Before we begin however, you will need to accomplish one task, or you wouldn't be ready yet."

"Alright... what's the task?"

"You must bring forth the Force all over your body, and maintain it steadily for at least a few minutes. Actually the first stage is to do just that for a period of 72 hours straight. But you have to learn to walk before you can run", he said and got up from the floor in one smooth, graceful motion that hinted of long time practice. He then grasped her hand, firmly but with consideration.

"Feel the Force flow through you", he stated and called up the Force himself, spread across his body. The close contact would allow her to feel the effect in him a lot easier, to allow her to mimick his actions. "Imagine it spreading from your center, outward, gently flowing like a warm fluid slowly spreading throughout your body. Picture it, then realize it. Make it Flow, all through. Like standing in a fire without being hurt... or chilled as dipped in cold streaming water."
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Re: Fantasy Heaven -Illusion- (Kane)

Post by Ederlaath » 2012-05-05 06:27

The lightsabre was unexpected. It shouldn't have been in retrospect, as it was one of the most fundamental of symbols of being a student of the ways of the ways of the Force. And all the more so if Ederlaath were to be a member of an actual order, if a quiet and unrecognised one. It still seemed… strange. Not at all the sort of thing she expected to be in possession of, even in this training form.

She blinked. Then again, perhaps it wasn't so bad. It was as she had desired yet another layer of protection for herself, and she even knew exactly who she would want to go to in regards to further refinement of her skills when her husband didn't have the time, and she didn't want to simply repeat drills.

That was for later, however, as at the moment she did have Kane there for instruction, and she hardly wanted to waste that time. Especially if this was to be a crash course of sorts. She did not mind being brought up to speed hastily, and she did believe it wouldn't be terribly dangerous. After all, she was still, she hoped, too valuable to risk in that way at least. But that didn't make it necessarily easy.

She didn't delay them by pressing for more, however. She swept up the lightsabre as she was brought to her feet, tucking it away for the moment in her belt, figuring out what to do with it a little later. Probably on her own time, given the way this seemed to be going.

If nothing else, she could certainly feel the stirrings in him, the motions coming as naturally and effortlessly as breathing might to her. Power coursing up from somewhere within, running in streams throughout him, then submerging again, in an endless cycle as he pushed himself and his essence farther into reality than it had any right being.

She barely had to picture it in the end. While she had never done something quite like this before, she could see clearly enough how it was done. It might have been difficult anyhow, the difference between knowing and doing and all that, but she realised a way to cheat as she stood there with their hands touching.

He was like a whirlpool in himself already, the current running down his arm, brushing against her skin before it withdrew back as he let himself relax.

So she touched a little harder. Not physically of course, just gently reaching herself out and letting herself get caught in the current just a little. It was barely closer than they had been, but the tug left a vacuum in the split second before she pulled away, and that was enough.

She took a deep breath as she felt it, filling the void left behind. Later of course she would have to do it entirely on her own, but in the meantime she could feel how it worked just as well this way. Once she had the momentum, she just had to nurture it along, feeling the Force flow through her, guiding it along through a thousand channels cut deep simply by living. Her eyes closed as she at once focused and relaxed, the cool, slick feeling wrapping her up in tendrils of silk.

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Re: Fantasy Heaven -Illusion- (Kane)

Post by Kane » 2012-05-07 12:52

She cheated, but as far as Kane was concerned, there was no cheating when it came to the Force. Either you did something, or you didn't, and using any and all means at your disposal was simply intelligent. But to not make it too easy on her, he dimmed down his own Flow and let go of her hand, leaving her to maintain her own Flow for three minutes.

Endurance - the time you could keep your Flow up and running at full - wasn't practiced enough in his opinion. But practical use gave training on the job for most of their number, so it sufficed as long as no one put push to show. A clash directly between Force users was a rare event, in any case. Just one that couldn't be discarded.

Ederlaath flickered a couple of times but managed to stabilize herself, and he noted that she did so by keeping her feelings steady and helped it by breathing regularly. A young, inexperienced apprentice could very well have panicked when they started to lose control. Ederlaath was certainly still young, but this showed that she wasn't a complete stranger to structured training, although by all accounts she must have been doing it on her own. It was also hard to say what she had experience with practicing.

In any event she made it past the three minutes. "Alright, time to begin your crash course", he said. "Just remain calm. I have no hostile intentions toward either you or our unborn, you should be able to feel as much." While it was possible to mask one's feelings just as well as your presence in the Force, it was by no means easy, especially at point blank range where she could see or sense every detail of his being. Being strong in the Force made it all the harder to mask it as well. This very ship - the Nemesis - was permeated from fifteen years of his living aboard it, and every trained Force user who entered aboard it could feel the same.

After saying that, he lifted his right hand and carefully began to form a specific shaped of energy, small, intended for a very specialized task. He kept building up larger reserves than he actually used for form the oval which was invisible but clearly glittering through the Force. They were meant for what came next. He passed his hand across her face at the level of her eyes, and the energy field left him only to take up residence on Ederlaath's face. After that he briefly touched her hands, both of them, and in doing so he passed a similar energy band from one to the other. While she was wondering what he was doing, he bent down so that he could do the same with her feet.

He had only just straightened himself up again when the energy fields he had left on her settled in, and everything went black. Not just dark black, nothingness black, as in that she couldn't even sense the varying levels of light that a person with normal sight did when they closed their eyelids. An absolute black darkness. Moments later, her limbs were weighted down, raipdly increasing to the point where she would need the utmost of her strength only to lift a hand above her hip.

"Relax", he said and studied his work on her body while crossing his arms. "With these simple measures, you are almost unable to do anything unless you rely on the Force to do it. It is a very effective form of training, because it never stops just because you're inconvenienced or tired of it. I don't need to tell you that it's going to be difficult. Once you are ready, I will remove the bonds... or if you eventually grow strong and skilled enough, you can remove them on your own. These bonds also work as a form of limiter, diminishing your presence in the Force. As such, the technique can be used for varying purposes."
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Re: Fantasy Heaven -Illusion- (Kane)

Post by Ederlaath » 2012-05-12 00:54

Well this was novel. Ederlaath had found herself blind before, and for that matter so exhausted she could barely move, but rarely was it while she still otherwise felt fine, or all at once, or with a peculiar feeling of near-claustrophobia as all her senses were dampened at once. It wasn't only hard to see—Kane's words sounded like he was a long way off all of the sudden, and she was even having trouble feeling his presence, almost as though he had just receded, the power burning within him dull and smoldering. It was her not him, of course, but the trick of perspective made it muddled in her head.

She could see the potential as a training device, and at the same time she could already tell this was going to drive her crazy. It was hardly like she could abandon her schedule for as long as she needed until Kane deemed her ready, or she herself could undo the bonds he had placed on her. Which meant she was going to be blind and crippled for a time. At least he had already given her the key to acting normal. She would simply have to take longer rests than normal as she exhausted herself.

It wasn't as though she was a stranger to hardship, and this would hardly be the first time she had pushed herself for an extended period. And of course, it was something for which the activity was its own reward. If this temporary inconvenience translated into a greater personal adeptness with her own talents, well, it was a small price to pay then. She'd simply have to be a bit more careful and circumspect in the meantime.

And no time like the present. She took a breath and started on gathering herself up. A few minutes spent centering herself and she started to lift herself up from where she sat. And since doing it the conventional way only to kick in with the assistance of the Force halfway through would probably only knock her off balance, she exerted herself from the start.

Of course, she was not particularly good at it. She had refined a number of personal tricks with her talent with the Force before, but amongst those had not been gross movements of things in the world. It would have been useful she imagined, but she had never had the time or the focus or the desperate need to cultivate that skill, and trying to start now was all the harder for all the habits she had already inculcated in herself. The physical world was a much… weightier place than what she was used to, for lack of a better way to describe it. It had left her deft and delicate, used to dealing with things that would blow all over the place if you pushed too hard, but here it left her overly sensitive and without the needed heft to move anything through.

She smiled a little, even as she could feel herself breaking out into a sweat as she rose. She was like an animal with vestibular canals far larger than her was suitable for her speed, and her tendency to try to make fine adjustments to a system that simply flattened her overreacting was making her a little dizzy. THe metaphor was a little tortured, but she found it apt enough, and it gave her something to to process while she focused on the task of standing up.

She managed in the end, although she was feeling the worse for wear for it. This was certainly going to take some getting used to. Although even the exertion couldn't entirely quench her curiosity. "What other purposes might you use it for?" She could come up with a few, she was sure, but she was decidedly intrigued what Kane's answer might be.

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Re: Fantasy Heaven -Illusion- (Kane)

Post by Kane » 2012-05-12 03:34

He was keeping very close attention to her as she adjusted to what just happened, since panic and freaking out was entirely a possibility. It hadn't happened yet since Force users in training had to be strong of mind, but seemingly perfectly stable people had lost it before and a darksider was always on a razor's edge.

"Pretending to be something you're not for example. It's a lot easier to maintain Force stealth when you have no choice about it, either. Plus one more thing... with such dampening bonds on, it's like training with a heavier sword than the one you will actually wield. If you get used to and train with having such an extra difficulty to overcome, you can easily push out an extra ten to thirty per cent energy when you don't use them. Sort of like taking off your gloves? In the same manner, it can be used to train against another in a less lethal fashion and still make it realistic."

She was taking it well so far, but the bonds did their job; she was paying close attention to what she was doing, and with enough practice, that would become second nature.

"The principle works with physical training as well. For many years now, I've used a bed that would keep me in a gravity field stronger than standard 1 g, gradually increasing it as my body adjusted. Of course, I've since lost the need to sleep at all."

There was a bit more to it actually. He hadn't changed physical appearance because he had been healing himself, subconsciously and constantly, through the Kaiburr crystal amulet he had made by himself and worn. It had reached the point where he had lost the ability to feel pain or even feel the effects of alcohol, since it was immediately and automatically countermanded. It wasn't so much that he had lost the need to sleep, he had lost the ability to even do it in the process. Now things were a bit different. He had a brand new body to work with which hadn't suffered from years of accumulating power, and had lost his amulet which Mai had taken to Force knows where. Although he still retained the ability and the subconscious effort, it wasn't dialed up to eleven anymore.

"As a transformation user, you specialize in certain abilities", he continued. "It may be my weakest aspect, but there are certain skills within it that I have perfected over many years, one being tutaminis."

"Tutaminis?", Ederlaath asked. She wasn't very familiar with Jedi or Sith terms, and also needed something to focus her mind on other than her effort to just remain steady.

"Absorption of energy. Electromagnetic waves, solar radiation, gamma rays... blaster bolts or the strike of a lightsabre. It differs from drawing Force energy from others in that you usually convert energy that strikes yourself, although you can reach out to draw it into you. You can only absorb so much energy before you combust, so it has to be harnessed safely. Usually in the form of projecting that energy back at the enemy, such as Force lightning, but you can use it for anything you want. The key is that you have to spend it on something. The amount you can absorb increases with practice, as your Flow will. In any case, all trained Force users have the ability, but most of us don't specialize in it. As a transformer, you can... and it works both ways. You can project fields around yourself. Shields, or otherwise. A magnetic aura for example. Or a bouncy one."

He recalled training Mai in doing just that, during his previous lifetime. She had made it key abilities, and he had to admit that bouncing around in what amounted to a giant soap bubble had certain... frivolous qualities with it.
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