Cerin powers the engines north with the vigor of the fire pole and all it's essence, switching over to the air-annihilation effect as they near the north
The city seems well at ease travelling back to the North, closer, so closer, to its original home.
Thirteen "Birds, how willing will Iallu be to aid us in recovering the seals?"
Birds "I don't know, but I hope that I have some influence with her now. At the least, it would be an adventure for the books, and she does love books."
Thirteen "I suspect that I may have something of interest to her."
Thirteen "What aid has she given us thus far?"
Birds leans off the edge of the city and shouts, "We're off to see the goddess!" Then she comes back. "Now we can surprise her."
Lucent "She only knows secrets?"
Birds "Hm. There was that flower, it had some information on it that I found as I was examining the fold pattern."
Birds "She's less interested in not-secrets. I'm sure that her eyes and ears would inform her that we were coming, if they didn't THINK she already knew."
Birds thinks about the flower.
The oh so familiar Temple of Unfeeling Ice eventually looms below the Solars.
Birds wanders around to the entrance of the temple and sort of lets herself in.
Cerin wanders in besides Birds
Birds is forcefully greeted by a rather larger Nibbles than the one she first left here.
Birds "Nibbles!" Birds gives him a hug. "Where's mom?"
The tiger cub rubs its rather vicious looking muzzle gently against Birds' legs, then runs back into the temple. The place is messier than most of the Exalts remember, with books spread out everywhere and loose papers flapping in the breeze -- Iallu has been doing some research, apparently.
Birds walks around shutting windows and locating chairs. "Sit down, boys. I'm sure the boss will notice we're here soon enough."
Cerin idly reads some papers. It's the quickest way to get Iallu here.
Thirteen glances around in some sort of rapture of information overload, trying to decide what to pry into first.
Lucent walks in a step behind the rest
Within seconds, the goddess, looking somewhat frazzled, pops in and quickly snatches at whatever Cerin is reading.
Iallu "Hello, welcome to my home, STOP READING THAT."
Lucent makes an appropriate gesture when meeting to such a goddess "It is a pleasure to meet you, Lady Llalu. We are sorry for the disturbance."
Iallu looks Lucent over carefully. "You look familiar. Do I know you?"
Birds "Hi! This is my buddy Luc."
Cerin discretely reads more papers whilst Luc distracts Iallu
Lucent "Pehaps. I have heard I look like my predecessor. The one who had my shard before me." The pools of gold in his eyes shine and undulate serenely, "I... feel I remember you, my lady. I must have met you in another life, certainly."
Lucent "My name is Lucent Copper Haze, yes."
Thirteen begins browsing through the nearest book, taking another and calmly swallowing it.
Iallu nods. "Hmmm, well. Welcome to my sanctum." She looks quickly at Thirteen, but doesn't manage to catch him with the book still visible, so she merely narrows her eyes and continues. "Birds, Birds, what brings you here today? Are you going to finish cataloging the Creeds?"
Cerin "The Imperial City."
Birds "We thought we'd consult you. You know, for your sage advice. I thought I catalogued the Creeds last month?"
Iallu "You cataloged them by author, title, and date. I still need them cross-referenced by subject, language, and accuracy of metaphysical principles!"
Birds "Oh, of course. I'll start with accuracy, then. Much less troublesome than that other rot."
Iallu Looking over the other Solars, she settles down very, very slightly. "What do I have to gain from this particular situation?"
Birds plans to catalogue them as "agrees with me" "disagrees with me" and "cannot make sense of, ask cerin."
Thirteen pauses, then calmly doubles over and vomits. Standing up again, he offers Iallu an enormous rolled parchment, covered in the same intricate language that decorates his spear.
Lucent ::What are the sorts of things she cares about? Information, the more obscure, the better?::
Iallu Iallu, apparently not in any way bothered by the vomiting, snatches it up and begins to flip through. After a mere moment, she suppresses wide-eyed glee and states "Ah, yes. This will do nicely."
Thirteen "A little bird told me you might be able to help us with our current predicament."
Iallu nods. "What do you need?"
Thirteen "The Seals of the Solar Deliberative."
Iallu "Pffft. You already have one, don't you?"
Thirteen "I use the plural form of the word advisedly."
Birds lifts several Creeds from their shelf and begins making notes on some scrap paper.
Iallu "And what do you want them for, exactly?"
Thirteen "It's a secret."
Iallu laughs forcefully.
Iallu "Give me a moment. This isn't a straightforward or easy request."
Iallu With that, Iallu waves a hand and two bookshelves slide open onto a dark staircase lined with intricate metallic runes, which she begins to descend without delay.
Birds "What about political agenda of author?" Birds asks herself.
Thirteen "You may, of course, omit information we already possess. It is clear that the Dawn Seal is held by agents of Malfeas, and that the other seals were scattered, presumably by the Perfect Circle, to prevent them falling into their hands."
Cerin wanders after Iallu
Lucent walks down with the Circle
Iallu "You're almost completely right!"
Cerin "It was the Sphere that had them removed."
Birds decides nothing interesting is going to come of being a librarian today, and tags along.
Thirteen "But the Sphere did not possess the power necessary to protect the Seals from the usurpant Solars. Only other Solars could do that."
Iallu The stairwell winds down some distance, the sigils changing shape and language as they pass. Eventually it lets out in a chamber where glowing strings of letters, maps, and other informational designs hang in the air, at strange angles to one another.
Cerin "That was why they sought to have them hidden. The Circle was in tatters at this point, I think."
Thirteen "My statement applies equally to their ability to conceal such items of importance."
Iallu nods at the others. "One seal was taken by Ymir beyond the bounds of the world. One is held by Malfeas. One was stolen before it could be disposed of. The last two were hidden; one was found, the other not."
Lucent "So, we have to walk into hell and take it out of the Primordial's grasp, after we are done."
Thirteen "Of course not. Lai is going to bring it to us."
Cerin "Anyway, if you would speak to us of the other three."
Iallu tugs on a series of glowing lines in the air, and they reshape themselves accordingly. "Even my knowledge is not as full as I wish it to be."
Iallu "The Eclipse Seal was spirited away within several months of the events surrounding Kiriath and Rosada. I have no clue as to where it was brought."
Thirteen "Do you by chance know who was last known to possessit?"
Iallu "The Zenith and Twilight Seals were hidden by the Sidereals, in two unlikely places. One, though it did not remain there, was hidden within the true heart of the mountain, accessible only by climbing to the very top and plunging into the depths. The other was taken to the heart of another place, far beyond this world: the Inlaid Palace of Xara."
Iallu "Even with years of effort, determining who took the Eclipse seal has proven beyond my capabilities. The information seems utterly lost."
Cerin idly considers where Ymir might have hidden it, as he wonders where he might find a list of Night Caste with similar skills
Birds pokes at the things floating in the air.
Thirteen stops for a moment. "Ah, Xara."
charlequin Thirteen excuses himself briefly to look into something in Iallu's stacks, leaving the other Solars with the goddess.
Zahara "Iallu, I would speak to you a moment, about a personal matter I think you will be quite interested in."
Iallu regards Zahara. "What, precisely, did you wish to discuss with me?"
Zahara "Well." she pauses, "There is a creature who is convinced that he will never die, as he will live on in stories and be forever reborn. This is unacceptable to me, so I intend to eradicate his memory from existence, distilling it into a single secret, held only by those currently in the room. This creature is, or will be when I do this, quite famous."
Iallu "How do you intend to accomplish this?"
Zahara "I intend to both consult with Birds of Trinity on making all written record of him disappear, as well as devising a spell based partially on her work, and partially on my ability to spread rumors..." here, she begins to go into detail on how such things can be reversed, and extrapolated into memory eradication if cast at the precise points in the precise order using Solar Circle Sorcery.
Iallu Iallu seems drawn into this conversation in some depth, nodding and occasionally offering tiny comments as Zahara explains her elaborate plan. Cerin and Lucent find themselves more or less alone in between two massive shelves of strange manuscripts and odd knickknacks.
Zahara "In return for this secret, and the knowledge of how to create it, I must, of course, ask for something. I ask only to fulfill a promise I made - I always keep my promises." She leans over and whispers in Iallu's ear.
Iallu thinks the matter over for a moment.
Iallu "How much do you know of the Deathlords?"
Zahara "Well, with one as a neighbor for quite some time, I've had a bit of a chance to learn about them. I understand they once used to be Chosen of the Sun, but have been corrupted to serve Death and bring the world to Oblivion. Other than that, my knowledge is limited."
Iallu Iallu digs into one shelf and pulls out a large scrap of parchment -- a map of the southeastern region, written on in Old Realm characters -- and hangs it in mid-air. "Yes. They are filled with the energies of the undead Primordials." She points to the area of Thorns. "You encontered one for the first time here, yes?"
Zahara consults the map, "Yes, in Thorns."
Iallu nods. "As you may have seen, then, even the weakest amongst them outstrips you like a woodsman next to a fresh babe."
Zahara "Indeed. I did not expect this to be a simple endeavor."
Iallu "No, indeed."
Iallu "I will have to consult my... sources, about your quarry in specific."
Zahara "Do you expect that you will find what I need by the time I complete my spell?"
Iallu "Oh, I expect I can easily do so."
Iallu looks over the Solars again, giving a slightly funny look to Lucent but otherwise seeming pretty self-satisfied.
Zahara "Then we have a deal?"
Iallu "Yes, yes."
Cerin It's at this point that Zahara hears a footstep, just slightly to her side "If I might talk with you too, Iallu."
Iallu nods to Cerin.
Zahara steps aside lightly for Cerin
Cerin "More specifically, I would like to talk to you about something that Ymir hid, apparently in the air of the North itself."
Cerin "I would like to know how I would find such a thing, and retrieve it."
Iallu "What.... is it?"
Cerin "That is at least half the reason I want to find it."
Lucent stays on his corner, watching, answering Iallu's look with a smile
Zahara walks over to Lucent and leans near him, glancing over, "Have you no secrets?" she asks quietly, so as to not disturb the others
Iallu curls her lip slightly. "The trouble with your predecessor is that she was not interested in creating secrets. If they were secrets, at least /I/ would know about them."
Cerin "So there is someone else who knows of this box then, and it's contents, and where it is hidden? Or are secrets merely by the dint of time not within your domain?"
Lucent "Oh yes. I stole a grape from an oasis before my tribe got there once. And I mated with a lady who was about to marry a friend once. Nothing that matters those days, does it? You, all of you, have those sweeping stories about you... but me, I am just someone who le his tribe to shelter on the Sunlands, someone who wants to crush the Lion's part on the Lily." He says, loud enough for Iallu to hear.
Birds makes herself busy tidying the area, which has become disorganized with use.
Lucent "There are a few secrets I would ask, but they seem so... small, when I am here with you all"
Zahara "Such things are small in mortals, but you are beyond that now, and even the smallest things, the secrets you see no value in, have more meaning."
Iallu "Ymir was certainly the most mysterious and skillful at the arts of hiding of any Solar in the golden age. There are many ways that secrets wend their way to me -- whispered silently in sleep, thought of too long in the company of the gods of air, written in the lines of one's face as he dies. In these ways I gather information that no one else knows.
Iallu But Ymir was often proof even to those methods." She clears her throat. "What do you know of this box?"
Lucent is taken aback "I... had not looked at it like that..."
Cerin "Ah, I would apologise for such techniques but ..." he shrugs, and then describes the box, in every detail that he remembers from the memory, as well as the backdrop to the vision.
Lucent "Also, now that I think of it. I need to ask about this thing of the Sun turning his face from us. Cosmic truths will be more interesting for you to listen than a village boy's problems, as well."
Zahara smiles at Lucent, "You say our dreams are bigger than yours, but we have simply had more time to grow used to our power." she shakes her head a bit, "And you must beware that even the secrets of your mortal life can and will be used against you."
Iallu asks Cerin to sketch the scene.
Birds watches over Cerin's shoulder with interest.
Cerin does so after pulling a set of coloured pencils from his cache egg. The scene is soon rendered in crisp blues and golds and pale flesh tones.
Lucent "Were yours'?"
Zahara "There is one attempting to. Thus I am eradicating him from existance."
Iallu pulls a sextant and several other small measuring devices out of... somewhere and immediately goes to work on the drawing. After gathering quite a few rather arbitrary numbers and writing them in glowing text amidst the air itself, she screws up her face for a moment, then snaps -- causing the very roof to open up.
Iallu rapidly resumes her measurements using the actual sky as reference
Cerin watches with interest.
Birds "I must learn that air-writing trick."
Zahara "Speaking of tricks, Birds, I must discuss one with you. My plan relies on your help."
Iallu mumbles without stopping her work, "I thought you were transcribing the Elements of Fundamental Metaphysics! It's described in a sidebar."
Birds sits by Zee. "Right. So, what about that..."
Iallu suddenly goes "AHA!" with a look of immense triumph, followed by sudden disappointment.
Zahara "I know that you have books that can write themselves. What I propse is a technique wherein all knowledge of a person is gathered into a single tome, erased from its original location with no trace."
Birds "The one in Tesearan hieroglyphs? I didn't translate it yet."
Iallu "Cerin, the good news is that I have determined the location of the box."
Cerin "I take it that there is some bad news then."
Birds "I think this is possible. It might require me to stretch my perceptions a bit... there needs to be some path between the book and the knowledge-in-the-world."
Birds "But it shouldn't be impossible, given that we know the art of clairvoyance and the art of making people forget."
Zahara "I imagine our techniques could build on eachother, as I am devising a spell to do the same from all memory."
Iallu "...are you familiar with the boundaries of the world?"
Birds brightens. "Yes! I'm sure that I can supply the knowledge to examine and erase records. With your spell doing the heavy lifting..."
Cerin "Which boundaries? Though I would guess at this juncture you are refering to wyld at the edge, not the adamant dome that is the sky..."
Iallu "The former, yes. I am afraid that the point in question lies some five hundred miles north of them."
Zahara "They must be performed in conjunction, or the one could influence the other. One with memory may write, or one with no memory may read. They must be completed at the same instant to ensure that this does not happen.
Cerin "Perhaps if you would be so kind as to tell me the point then?"
Iallu describes it in coordinates, assuming that Cerin is smart enough to work with them.
Birds nods. "I'll begin experiments and research at once."
Cerin considers the matter. He then considers the gates, and wonders if any will work after this long in the wyld. "Thank you, Iallu." He starts to drift over to Zahara and Birds.
Lucent steps foward. "Hello, Iallu. Thank you to be helping us so. Can you still spare time for my questions, oh goddess?"
Zahara "I appreciate your willingness to help me in this endeavour, Birds." she smiles. "You are a good friend."
Iallu "That seems to be my job for the evening."
Cerin leans down to kiss Zahara as he reaches the pair
Birds grins. "I'll always be glad to help you do bloody vengeance on your enemies, Zee."
Zahara smiles and kisses back, "Cerin, you will come with us on our quest to eradicate Tevezst won't you?"
Cerin "Of course, my love."
Zahara "I haven't told Ebon yet, do keep it a surprise for me, won't you?" she regards all assembled.
Lucent "I have two questions about heaven. And some others about myself, but they will wait next time I am around, right? Especially now that I know how to come here... but, um. The Lily has spoken that the Sun has betrayed us, is consorting with dark things from beyond. Apparently, all their higher ups believe that. Know if there is any truth to that, and how many believe so?"
Iallu gets very quiet and still.
Cerin nods "Before we travel back to the south though, I would like to take a detour through the wylds."
Zahara "See, Lucent has asked the grandest question of us all." she says quietly, smiling. "And of course, we can detour as long as Thirteen's plans permit."
Cerin "For the memory to occur as it did, I suspect the contents of the box may well influence them, my love. My memories from that time are rarely trivial... and yes, yes he has."
Iallu "I am not one to know of the Sun's doings." Iallu speaks, very quietly.
Lucent "That is, however, a rumor. It was told by someone to the Lily."
Zahara kisses Cerin again, "You are right, love. We will go to look for this box."
Zahara "I'm sure he can accomodate us for once." she smirks a little.
Iallu "I... cannot speak to any such dealings. Sol Invictus is not a topic of secrets to me."
Zahara "In fact, I think you owe me a detour of my own." she smiles mischevously and tugs on his hand."
Lucent "... are you telling me you believe this rumor to be true?"
Lucent "And asking about why he 'turned his face from the world' before is right out as well, I suppose..."
Birds /me takes this opportunity to look productive, copying down the sidebar in Elements for translation later.
Iallu The normally fairly energetic Iallu seems almost pallid.
Cerin "... I do?" Cerin says, a rascalish look in his own eyes to match her grin, drawing her away from the others.
Zahara "Oh yes, you've been rather.. distracted lately. I mean to fix that." she follows him into the depths of Iallu's stacks
Lucent "Is it the Lily? Are you scared about those who made this rumor?"
Iallu shakes her head.
Lucent "Who can speak of it, then?"
Iallu clams up.
Lucent "Is it against some big heavenly law they made recently? Damnit, Iallu! Say SOMETHING!"
Iallu bursts out. "I think you've outstayed your welcome here!" and turns to run from the room.
Birds gives Luc a look. "Remember the jungle cat? He attacks his prey from behind. Iallu gets uncomfortable with very direct questions."
Birds "Don't worry though, she'll get over it. You're much too charming to stay angry at." She heads after Iallu.
Birds "And too -full of tasty secrets.-"
Lucent "What does it take, nowdays? Festivals? A cult?!? Hey, don'..." Too late. He makes some slow noise - like a scorpion would if it could hiss - but stops to chuckle. "Thanks, Birds..."
Iallu Birds follows Iallu out of the room, leaving the other Solars alone in the library.
Lucent has to fight the urge to punch something, or scatter books around. "... damnit."
Iallu Birds wanders back over after ensuring that Iallu settles down for a nap.
Birds "Hi, Luc!"
Lucent has his hands against the wall, as if wondering wether or not to kick it down "Hey, Birds. She let you go?"
Birds "She just needed a break. I think all is not well in the heavenly city."
Birds "And we are going to have to do something about it, I'll bet."
Birds looks slightly irritated about this.
Lucent "This was for real, right? She did not want to tell me because..." He shakes his head, "How can we get that out of her?"
Zahara ::Interesting noises emanate from off in the distance, accompanied by the crackling of discarded secrets ::
Birds "She will be leaving notes and relevant documents around, I imagine. We can't get her to -tell- us, I don't suppose, but she might be trying to -show- us..."
Lucent "If that is right, Birds, we need to break into heaven, and set things right. We need to burn that out of it." He sighs. "My, will Thirteen be delighted."
Lucent begins to look around the room, picking whatever books he can find and skimming them...
Birds tries to do the air-writing thing and manages to light up her castemark.
Tags: (:tags Crystal, Iallu, Temple of Unfeeling Ice, Nibbles, Seals of the Deliberative, Dawn Caste Seal, Perfect Circle, Sidereals, Ymir, Zenith Caste Seal, Twilight Caste Seal, Eclipse Caste Seal, Xara, Tevezst, Deathlords, Primordials, Lockbox, Sol Invictus :)