The image of Marian's mask floated ominously in the dark, and despite its lack of expression, displayed enough of her displeasure at the current situation. Initially she was very much impressed how Naisiskhrea was able to blend their spells together, but now it was the opposite. Well, not to say she wasn't still impressed that it was even possible in the first place, but now that it's finally grown out of their control, she was not too excited about the other things attached to it.
Gods, why is magic way too over-complicated?
Marian sighed heavily, the sound itself seemingly distorted in her ethereal form. "It would definitely mean it'll back to the islets for me," she continued Naisiskhrea's words, the irritation plain to hear. Of course, Marian didn't remember the greater part of her stay there, but she couldn't possible be excited about the idea of returning to the correctional facilities.
"So? Any ideas?" she demanded. "My abilities on dreams are plain and simple but it's out of my control now. We're gonna need to kick that guy's ass ourselves. So what's the details of your abilities?"
Naisis had no idea what this 'islets' was, but from Marian's expression, it was not a nice place, "then we just have to make sure you do not go there."
As for a plan, Naisis was at a loss. Yes, she studied what a magical cascade was and the means to end it, but all that was a theory since nobody, at least as far as she knew, has ever done anything like that. Well, now, it was no theory. She has gone and done it. She should be taking notes, but at the moment, she had more pressing matters to deal with.
She looked at the mask of Marian and ran her fingers through her hair, "Since, as far as I know, this has never happened, I have no real idea what to do. The most obvious is to separate the power sources, you and me. You stay here while I go to Earth or the Subliminal. That should snap the link. Although the backlash will not be pleasant."
Hearing about Marian's magic brought Naisis hope, "My magic can make illusions real but only in my - dream bubble."
An idea began to form, "Is your's linear, that is, has a beginning and an end? My magic is cyclic in nature. If so, then we can let it play out. We have to keep the use of magic at a minimum. Which means keeping him at bay." She peered around the corner at Azure.
Easier said than done.
Marian could feel her vision doubling, creating the illussion of more shadows surrounding her despite her knowing full well it wasn't the case. The spell was draining from her own magic, but she couldn't put a stop to it becuse of this 'magic cascade' thing. Marian didn't need to hear about that part nonetheless unless it was going to help them figure out a way to break down this living nightmare.
"So basically this is only real as long as I'm around you, yeah?" The shade surmised. Naisiskhrea's idea of them splitting up could possibly work indeed. Her basic nightmare spell should wear off probably after less than hour, so they could really just let it play out until then.
Even so, that doesn't really explain why Marian was feeling lightheaded.
"That's it!" Marian perked up, turning to face her fellow dream maker. "The spell I cast shouldn't be able to hold out for longer than an hour, but" a pause, trying to level if her guesses were correct. "Your dream bubble is drawing out the full effects of the spell, which means this guy and whatever magic he has can probably hurt us both mentally and physically.
"Problem is, I can't be using the spell at its fullest for too long so it's already starting to get to me. If we wait it out, you'll probably come out of here mentally intact as long as you avoid him, but I haven't gone that long to be sure I would too," Marian explained grimly. No matter how Marian looked at it, it seems that she was at a disadvantage right now.
"As I said, this spell is out of my control now and I can't stop it even if I wanted to. Besides, isn't this your dream bubble? Don't you have more control over it?"
Naisis sighed. It wasn't so much the cascade, but that she trapped Marian in it. And from the looks of it, she was getting the worst end of it.
When Marian commented about Naisis's magic, She gave a dry chuckle, "Ya. Others can see anything inside my bubbly, but the stuff outside, like Azure, is - well - painted on the inner surface. So you must be inside to see it. Regrettably, I can not shut down my bubble."
Naisis listened to Marian as she explained the situation with incredible clarity. When she described her situation, Naisis bopped her head as she realized how the mix was happening and knew how to stop it.
"You are more in control than you think. You are the motivation behind it, which is why I can not control it, but I am the power behind it overwhelming your control. But if I..."
She dared go no further. She did not want Azure to know her plan, which was simple, to drain off Azure's magic without adding any more. Hoping drain off enough so Marian could take control. But, to do so, she had to get him very angry. She grimaced, knowing it would mean getting hammered, but that was the price she had to pay.
Stepping out from behind the building. Flaring her horn, she was encased in a battle-armour exo-suit she saw in a movie (Matrix Reloaded) with a pair of chain-guns on each arm.
Yelling, "Hey! Shithole! EAT MAGIC!"
With that, all four chain-guns came to life, sending bullets flying to Azure and pouring out brass casings onto the street. Azure roared in pain and rage as he was engulfed in dark smoke. Naisis strode forward with the chain-guns blaring knowing she would soon be out of ammo.
She yelled over her shoulder to Marian, "stay in the shadows and remember this is all an illusion!"
Marian huffed. The hell does she mean she's in control? Marian had already tried to shut it down but the dream wasn't having it. The young Shade expected Naisiskhrea to finish her sentence but the side glance she threw to the side told Marian she wasn't going to hear any more of it. Without any other warning, Naisiskhrea stepped out of their hiding, donning a suit she could have sworn she saw in a film.
But that wasn't he point of it. Naisiskhrea had decided to face their enemy, which made sense -- one way to deal with her nightmare spell was to stop feeling it with fear. Except the scene left Marian just a bit dumbfounded as she watched from the shadows.
Marian nearly zoned out until Naisiskhrea yelled back to her, to which she responded, "Yeah, no shit, you think I didn't know that?!"
Of course she knew that -- but illusions werent just an illusion when it had the capacity to damage her mind a second time. Again, Marian huffed, trying to focus her thoughts into bringing down the illusions from her end. If Naisiskhrea couldn't turn off her imagination, then it apparently was up to her to actually shut this particular nightmare down.
Naisis chuckled at Marion's retort, which also showed Marion was still with it. With what was going on, that was very important. Naisis hoped Marion did not get overwhelmed by what was happening.
Although she was still pouring it on, he did get a few good hits. One knocked out one of her chainguns, so she was down to three. Dodging and keeping up the pounding, she could sense Azure's magic levels dropping, but not fast enough.
She roared over the sound of her guns, "Is that the best you can do! You claim to be this all-powerful being an ex-Set, and you are getting your butt whooped by a female Anacorn, no least!"
Azure roared in rage. A set of rocket launchers formed under his wings, which caused Naisis to blink. She was not expecting that, But everything he does draws on his magic reserve, which should be a significant draw. Now, if she could survive the onslaught, they might be able to take him down.
While she was dodging and firing the guns when silent, she discarded the outer exo-suit revealing an inner one. Azure grinned as he launched a volley of rockets. She rushed ahead just under them. She was knocked forward by the blast as the building behind her was turned into rubble. All except the wall Marion was hiding; she made sure it was outside her bubble and not affected by the illusion.
With each volley, she could sense his magic plummeting. This volley found her and sent her flying. Although the attacks hurt, they cond no damage her; it was the real stuff in the area could. She was wearing a suit designed to absorb a lot of the impact, but not all.
With the next volley, she could sense another magic in him, Marian's. As the rockest hit, she yelled while flying through the air, "Marian, NOW!"
Marian hid in the shadows; the most she could do was watch and visually break down the illusion, breaking down the images for what they were. Naisiskhrea and Azure duked it out, occasionally distracting Marian as they darted about, but it was not enough to keep her from doing her work.
While those two were busy, Marian worked in the background, breaking down illusions that weren't at focus. She could feel the spell unraveling around its edges, occasionally feeling some objects return to their normal state within her mind's eye. That probably means it was working and the illusions were starting to wear out. Naisiskhrea was still caught mid-fight she could assume if she were to go buy the sounds that were reaching her -- distant but echoing. But of course Marian knew this to be normal knowing that that man was the very core of this nightmare.
Soon enough, Naisiskhrea's magic was finally releasing the nightmare. Naisiskhrea called for Marian, and the latter did not miss the moment to retort, "Already on it!"
Marian took control and undid the spell. Not a few moments longer, Azure came to view, looking nothing more than a statue beginning to crumble before them while it struggled to move. Marian, offering nothing more but her words would simply blurt out towards Azure's direction: "Hey you're being a bitch about this, stranger!"
As the curtains finally dropped on the nightmare they created by sheer accident, Marian reverted to her human shape. Which for a moment, she had to regret because her vision blurred, and everything spun around. She managed to catch herself by crouching on the ground, eyes closed, before she fell flat on her face but even then it took her longer to manage to even look into artificial lighting from the city lights.
"Not physically hurt at least," she admitted. Normally she wouldn't but right now wasn't exactly a good time to hide the fact. She'd lie about anything else but she'd rather not open her eyes and see things she won't like. "Feeling a little dizzy -- give me sec."
From the sound of it, Naisiskhrea was okay, which disappointed her just a bit because she wanted to shake her up a bit -- the main reason why she even put her into a nightmare. Alas, it was one of those times she didn't size up her target well. The least she hoped was she put on a good show for her.
"My brothers gonna nuke me if he finds out I went drinking but I wouldn't mind a treat," she finally said, slowly getting up to her feet. She wasn't feeling 100% yet, but she didn't like looking like the weak link.