Private Finished Extracurriculars and Extraplanars

foggydoggy

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Adelaida briefly examined her pupil, turning her head to see all the small details. She gently held onto Michi's chin and tilted her head to observe, maybe a little too closely as was natural for her. "Well, I like how you look... so it's a pass from me. Clean, no obvious gaps that I can see, everything's in place. Your family, I'm guessing? It's a similar face to yours, with a different kinda charm to your normal."

She sat down again and let out a long sigh, dramatically slumping her body on the chair. She put on airs, a tired mother from a soap opera, complete with the back of her hand on her forehead. "What am I gonna do with you? You're learning so fast I don't know if I can keep up. You're breezing through the practical stuff so quickly. Don't get me wrong, it's absolutely fantastic but I'm having my common sense thrown out the window here."

"Ah. Anyway, I think we should take a break here. After I teach you syntax, it's really just memorization and replication, so there's not much point to me doing anything right now. Basically, I'm just here to keep an eye out while you practice."


Adelaida produced two bottles of orange juice from a nearby box she had prepared earlier. They had lost some of the coolness in the meantime. One of them she handed to Michi. "Hope you're not getting too lightheaded. We'll pick back up in a bit, so for now let's take it slow..."
 

Hyper

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Michi stood under her mentor's scrutinizing gaze, flinching ever so slightly at the touch on her chin. She tried not to mind it, while also trying not to stare into Adelaida's eyes in such close proximity. But, it took Michi Adelaida giving back her space before she spoke herself. "Ah yeah, it's... my older sister. She's sort of the prettier one," she admitted, grimacing slightly as the words left her. She would have hated to elaborate and she was glad that she didn't have to, seeing her mentor drape herself on a nearby chair on a spiel about her easily picking up. This elicited a small chuckle from Michi, a gesture contrasting her sister's sharper features. She didn't even think she'd easily pick up on anything despite not having any prior knowledge to magic -- almost as if she was guided by something else than just her mentor. At Adelaida's suggestion to take a break, MIchi tried to shake off the spell, reverting back to her normal appearance while quietly thinking to herself that she could probably try that when she didn't want to go through the effort of fixing her hair. The voices in her mind seem to encourage it, reminding her how it felt more rewarding than spending a few extra minutes just for her signature buns. Michi decided not to dwell on the thought. For now. "I think I still have a few charges left in me," she said a bit jokingly as she accepted the orange juice. Not quite a lie, though the voices seemed to have a different sound compared to when she came in earlier, but Michi couldn't quite put it into words. Regardless, her mind was focused on her lesson. Syntax. Didn't sound too complicated from the sound of it, but she might be overestimating her own learning curve. "So um. How long did you take until you perfected the bigger spells? Like the one you gave me for homework?"
a song from beyond
 

foggydoggy

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"Yeah, this is good too," Adelaida said with a smile as Michi reverted to her own face. At the same time, she smiled at her student's ability to dispel the spell without needing to be taught how. It spoke of great instinctual feel for the arcane, which she hoped was natural. The other possibility creeping in the back of her head was that whatever had its hold on Michi's soul was helping her out.

She made a mental note to defer mentioning that theory. After all... it was technically Michi's power now, whether she liked it or not.

It was good that Michi wasn't tired or drained, though it did reinforce Adelaida's suspicions a little. She dismissed the thought with a laugh. "Well, let me take a couple of minutes to accept everything then!"

Adelaida thought back to her own time when she was learning. Her pace wasn't too far off from Michi's, all things considered. "I was messing around with syntax and fragment sequences by the end of the first day, so if you manage to make a spell yourself today I'll be incredibly impressed. But it took me a few months before I got to the really complicated stuff. By the way, that homework... doesn't count as complicated. Spell complexity is exponential because you're combining distinct spells together at the same time in the correct sequence, which is what we've got next."
 

Hyper

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Michi gave her mentor a timid smile when she was asked to let her catch up, along with an awkward little giggle. "If you say so." She hadn't really put much thought into how it even occured to her to dispelling the illusion, instead her focus was on her progress and the next step. For all she knew, dispelling should have come naturally to casting, not aware of her secondary coach in the back of her mind. As Adelaida told her her side, Michi fumbled with the juice box in her hand, lightly fiddling with it as she sipped through the straw. Her eyebrows shot up slightly, being told that the homework she was given wasn't considered complicated. The first thought that occurred to her was that she might be able to perfect that sooner and actually put it to use. And if it's not at all considered complicated then she could probably do more with it. Imagine the possibilities, a voice in her mind whispered. Michi set he thought aside, choosing to inquire further into her lessons. "So... for example?"
a song from beyond
 

foggydoggy

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"Hmm." Adelaida's brow furrowed for a bit as she thought of the possibilities. They were theoretically infinite as long as one found the right sequence and managed to properly connect them to one another.

She considered what to speak of. She could tell from that innocent question that the curiosity had taken hold of her student, and as the mentor it was her job to keep that fire lit. Adelaida was now personally invested in this pet project of hers.

After moments of silence, she chose a common project that still had a great amount of skill expression in the arcane sciences. "It was popular among us to create magical automatons... like golems. You build them with a spell, and then inscribe them with the more complex 'code' that determines their actions and what triggers them. A lot easier than the more ambitious creation of something that's actually sentient, which I only partially accomplished, but still a fantastic and useful way of getting your sequencing practice in. We used to make automatons to do boring jobs like laundry and house-cleaning. I sold quite a few and I'm still living off of savings from those."

Adelaida flipped one of the more advanced fragment compilations and stopped on a page depicting a delicate maze-like pattern. "If you want to try it, this is the spell to make a thing out of a non-metallic, inorganic solid like a stone or a crystal. Either write it on the material, or put whatever you wrote it on on the top of the material as you invoke it to make it work. The shape-change is permanent, and it's based on what you're imagining as you cast. Tricky for beginners cause you need to focus on two things at once, but you did the illusion just fine, so I think you can handle it."

"Now... making it move is the tough part,"
Adelaida continued, skipping forward to a section of the book labeled Physical Actions. She pointed at multiple similar-looking fragments, and then to a different section labeled Triggers. "For each action it can do, you have to combine a fragment that tells it what to do with a fragment that tells it when to do that, and then the more separate actions it does the harder and harder it gets because you somehow have to get them all on the material without making them overlap if you're physically putting the marks on it. Actually, that reminds me."

Adelaida yanked a small parcel out of one of the boxes of materials she had prepared, a box that she held in her hand and gave to Michi. Inside it was an eyepiece and multiple magnifying lenses for it, alongside a collection of extremely fine-tipped pens, chisels and brushes. "I used to use these before I mastered directly using magical energy to write my spells. Yours now... They'll help you pack in more patterns in a smaller space and make more complex work."

While it was a difficult matter, she had a faith that Michi wasn't going to be scared off by this level of complexity. She could sense a kindred spirit in her student, someone who had the same hunger. Instinctively, she just knew. Adelaida let herself be briefly amused by the amount of investment she was putting into this girl.

"Would be a shame if you got cold feet now, wouldn't it," Adelaida grinned.
 
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Hyper

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As Adelaida dropped the word 'golem', it would have been hard to ignore how the girl's eyebrows seemed to perk with curiosity. Just from that Michi could wager a guess there was a lot of possibilities she could explore, and it only was encouraged by the voices whispering in her mind. Slowly, Michi was starting to lose track of her original motivation to wanting this apprenticeship... While Adelaida began to explain what really warranted a 'complex' spell, Michi tried to keep up, visualizing the whole process of creating golems. She was very clearly transfixed to the process as it was getting explained to her, nodding and humming in understanding occasionally. Her eyes followed the pages in each turn, tracing the patterns of the fragments shown to her with her eyes. Almost as if already practicing drawing them herself. Michi, being still somewhat distracted by the book, took a moment before she followed Adelaida reaching for something off to the side before it was handed to her. Curiously, she opened the box, revealing its contents. Michi let out a quiet gasp, marvelling at the tools. She instinctively picked up one of the pens, inspecting the tip while half-listening to Adelaida that she almost missed what she'd said. Once it sunk in that Adelaida was giving it to her, her head snapped up towards her mentor. "Wait, I can have this?" she said, surprise in her voice. She bit her lip as she turned back to the pen, and then a brush, biting her lip to hide a playful yet scheming smile. Imagine, a voice in her mind chanted again. Getting to keep the book for reference was one thing, but having a few tools on hand made Michi want to try them out as soon as possible. "I'll... try not to get ahead of myself for now," she said, stretching out the first word almost teasingly. The thought of having little creatures running around the house doing chores had always been fantastical for her, but the idea that she could actually make that real was making her giddy. "Don't think you'll have to worry about me getting cold feet," she told Adelaida, trying to bite back a wide smile.
a song from beyond
 

foggydoggy

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"All yours," Adelaida said with a smile. Hook, line and sinker, she thought to herself. No one could miss how enthralled her pupil was now.

Of course, no matter how much Adelaida wanted this student of hers to plumb the depths of arcane knowledge, she wanted Michi to do it right. She couldn't keep learning if she ended up dead or insane, after all.

"I've given you what you need to make your own stuff, but I'll lay down a few rules and hope you follow them, just for safety's sake. First, if you're making a spell and you're not sure, show it to me before you, uh, turn it on, even if you just send me a pic or something. Just so I can confirm you won't blow yourself up. Second, even if you find someone who sells, which shouldn't be hard on this island, no using magic materials like blessed ink or whatnot. Crutches make it harder to learn properly."

Adelaida dropped the smile for a second to emphasize that the next rule was important and should not be taken lightly. "Last, you never do magic when you're not in control of your thoughts. No drunk spells. No conjuring colorful lights when you're high. When you drink drive you're gonna crash, and with spells you're lucky if it's just physical injury. I'm not about to let my magnum opus be ruined by something like that."

She relaxed a bit and let the proud smile return to her face. With the rules out of the way, Adelaida was ready to proceed with the bits she knew Michi was more interested in than caution. After all, Michi was raring to go, so who was Adelaida to slow her down?

"Alright, I think I've had enough time to process. We'll do syntax next, and I think that'll be a good place to wrap up day one. You will have a lot of stuff to take home after though."
 

Hyper

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At this point, Michi would have already missed the expression on Adelaida's face when she confirmed Michi's question. All yours, the voices in her mind echoed, all while she tried to keep herself from bouncing about in her seat. But, she reminded herself. They still had a lesson to do, so she had to restrain herself for now. Perhaps later, once their session was over, she could try them out. Michi carefully placed the items back into the box, trying to focus in on Adelaida's instructions while the voices in her mind seemed to whisper inquisitively inside her mind. It made it hard to focus but it was a good thing Adelaida was pretty straight to the point -- else she'd have to struggle longer. Michi had a mental list of the do's and don't's and she figures that's enough. "No random magic, no cheats, and no magic when under the influence, gotcha," she said a little lightheartedly as soon as Adelaida's scary face let up. She smiled at her mentor, assuring her none of the likes would happen. With that part done, she set aside the box of tools and turned back to Adelaida. "I don't really mind carrying--" She paused, looked at the box and the book and for a moment and wondered if she could carry that all the way back to the dorms. She probably could. Putting that thought aside... "I'll live. So... syntax..?"
a song from beyond
 

foggydoggy

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Syntax was where the good and the bad in her school of magic were threshed out. No matter how precise the symbols were, if they were in in the wrong arrangement, if the wrong sequence of runes were made, the spells wouldn't work as intended. Adelaida's scientific school was like that. Rigorous, structured, strict.

Adelaida pulled out a complex sample runic circle, one that created the most basic of her custom golems. It had at least a dozen smaller circular patterns inside the biggest containing circle.

"For syntax, it's easier to understand if you think of the fragments as 'words'. Your sentences that form the spell go clockwise, from inner to outer, until you form the complete circuit. Each sentence is one circle, and you form complex spells with paragraphs. For example, here," Adelaida said, pointing at the center pattern, "it basically says 'shape stone into the drawn shape, with these measurements. These little additions to the base spell provide the measurements, and that completes one layer. Then you move out to the second layer, which gives it articulation points. You do one of each of those for every point you want to be able to bend. It's always clockwise, and from inside to outside."

Adelaida flipped over to a simpler spell, a light source that adjusted itself based on how bright the surroundings were. "This one is more straightforward. You see the pattern of light that you've already practiced, but with these additions. They set a trigger - if the light's bright, your light dims, but if it's dark out, the light shines brighter."

She handed Michi a pair of the many books she had compiled. "This book's literally just triggers, and the other one's just 'effects' that let you modify spells. And they're not all that there are. Now you can kind of see why I said there's a lot of memory in play here."

After handing her the pair of books, she next provided a blank paper. "The triggers and effects are all listed there. To see if you understand syntax, I want you to try and customize any of the spells you've already practiced to do something a little differently. You can use any trigger or any modification from these books."
 

Hyper

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Michi's eyes squinted at the first runic circle, trying to break down its complexity from the momentary glance before Adelaida started speaking. Michi followed to where Adelaida pointed, trying to familiarize herself with how it was constructed. "Clockways, inside to out," she echoed quietly, making sure to commit that detail to memory. She did fairly the same onto the next, though she remarked inwardly that it looked less overwhelming than the other. She took another moment to look at the design of the rune, locking on on to the familiar pattern of the lightspell under all the other shapes that altered the spell. Just as she hit the wall trying to figure out what the trigger should have looked as its own fragment, Adelaida handed her a couple of books, one which likely contained the fragment she was looking for but before she could ask, a blank paper followed. "Wait so, right now?" Michi asked, a little bewildered. Sure the syntax sounded easy but it was the same as trying to form a sentence in a language she didn't know a single word of. She was about to say the thought aloud, but figured perhaps she should, try and open the books first. Maybe she could just randomly think of something and hope that any of the desired modification she wanted could be in the books. Michi sat there for a moment before flipping through the books, trying to look for something she could match with the spells she'd tried earlier. It probably was taking a while and if it weren't for the murmurs in her mind, it would have probably been awkwardly silent. "Is there... something... that could get it to set off if the heat goes up..?" she mused aloud, as she flipped through the pages. She couldn't really think of a good spell at the moment -- all that came to mind was a magic fire sprinkler.
a song from beyond
 
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